Season’s Greetings!

Season’s Greetings!

Good morning everyone!   I hope everyone is trying to take some time to themselves to just enjoy this time of year.  It’s hard when you have children in your life to take some time for yourself any time of year, let alone during the holiday season.  But the dividends of doing so far outweigh the costs.  The same goes for the childless people picking up extra shifts this time of year so those with children can spend time with theirs.  I hope you find some time to just enjoy the season.

Friday I hosted a cookie exchange.  We had a great time chatting, eating and playing games.  The cookies were great too!

We went to a friend’s for a Christmas dinner Saturday, where I re-learned how to darn my good hand knit wool socks.  I’ve been busy mending socks ever since.   I have a lot with holes I’m afraid!  We had a wonderful Christmas dinner, opened some gifts early, and played games.

Sunday I went for a walk with a friend in the snow, as it came lazily drifting down from the sky.  We visited family to drop off gifts.  We are slowly preparing for Christmas.

My future creative plans?  I’m busy preparing to knit a beanie hat (or a toque as we call it in Canada) for my last Christmas gift.  After that I want to knit myself another pair of wool socks.  Plus, now I’ve finished the Trip-Around-The-World quilt, it’s time to finish the South Korean appliqué quilt.  I have nine blocks stitched.  I need at least 27 more.

For those of you having a lonely Christmas – whether due to Covid or other factors – I encourage you to reach out to others online or by writing letters or email, or Zoom/Skype/FaceTime…whatever works for you.  Give a bit of yourself to others, or take some time to heal.  That is what I’ll be doing the next two weeks.  I’m taking some time off to spend time with family and friends, and to enjoy Christmas.  I’ll spend time knitting and quilting for a change.

This will be my last blog post until after New Year’s.

If you have been, thanks for reading, and…

MERRY CHRISTMAS EVERYONE! 

 

Holiday Preparations

Holiday Preparations

Good evening everyone!  I’m a bit late with this post because I really haven’t done anything crafty this past weekend.  At this point I’m organizing Christmas.  I did finish baking the Raspberry Ribbon Cookies.  They are very good, according to Hubby, my taste tester. I concur. I put them in the freezer quickly, so there would be some left for Christmas.

I’ve been writing cards and organizing gifts. I have a large extended family and, while we normally don’t exchange much with each other, I singled out a couple of families for all the help they’ve been to us since we moved.  I’ve also singled out a few close friends for cards and gifts.

I love giving gifts, but I realize not everyone likes to receive. They feel an obligation to exchange gifts. Or they just aren’t “into” gifts. Or there’s financial reasons.  Or time constraints. Or…

That’s okay.  There are many types of gifts other than physical objects. I gift my time, or fulfill a need or want that comes up throughout the year. I will gift my experience and expertise to people who really need it and ask for it.  There are, of course, limits on that. I don’t like to be used any more  than the next person!  By taking a broad view of gift giving I am able to help more people and spread happiness throughout the year, not just at Christmas time.

I hope, wherever you are, that you find time to slow down during this holiday season (no matter what holiday you celebrate) and soak up some peace, and wonder at the marvellous world around you.

If you have been, thanks for reading.  Have a great week!

 

 

 

Weekly Review: Christmas Decorating

Weekly Review: Christmas Decorating

Good morning everyone!  This week has been one of preparing for the upcoming holiday season.  I hosted a tree decorating party yesterday.  I invited a few friends to help.  Our house is small and with Covid doing its thing again (still) I decided to err on the side of caution.

We had a potluck buffet and it was great! One of my friends surprised me with a home baked bread Advent wreath!  I’d seen one at her place before  and commented on the uniqueness of it. She decorated it before she left last night.

We had a young lady come who helped decorate the tree, the front window and arrange some Christmas florals in a floor vase.  It was great to have her energy and enthusiasm in the room.  I think I still need more ornaments on the tree, but we were running out of them. I just didn’t buy enough. Something to think about next year.

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Then there were the garland ladies!  They did a magnificent job of making two cheap Michaels garlands look good. Trust me, that was a job!

One lady took on the mantel and went all out.  It looks gorgeous!

I am so happy for the help of my friends.  They did a wonderful job and we had great fun doing it. The food was good too.  I made some mulled apple cider as well.  It was a great time, and lots of fun. Thank-you to all involved!

In other news…I am still in the process of printing out labels for “The Weave” and “Where Are We Going?”.  Once those are done I’ll be taking a month long break from hooking. I want to focus on finishing up some other projects around here.  I have some quilts and other projects to finish up.

If you have been, thanks for reading!  Have a great weekend!

 

Weekly Review – It’s Finished!

Weekly Review – It’s Finished!

Good evening everyone!  I finished hooking “Where Are We Going?”, and with it the poetry series of hooked wall hangings. This weekend I will be hemming and attaching hanging sleeves to it and “The Weave”.

I am pleased with this series, and also happy to be moving on.  I’ve been working on it for far longer than I anticipated, due to hooking for other reasons, and moving cross country.  The full series took me eight *years* to complete!  I am a slow hooker who packs a lot of life into her days.  Hooking is only one of my areas of interest.

This week I have been busy transferring files from an old external hard drive that is being retired because the company that made it is no longer going to support it.  I still have more files to go.  The hard drive stopped recognizing all my Apple devices.  However it still recognizes Hubby’s PC, so he transferred everything to flash drives and we’ve been transferring files that way.  I’ve had to go through every file to make sure there were none missing and no duplicates. Time consuming to say the least. We won’t be buying that type of hard drive again.

We are still busy preparing for Christmas. There’s been a flurry of activity and plans surrounding the occasion. I unpacked the pre-lit pencil Christmas tree to make sure all the lights were in working order. They are!   I’m trying to decide how I want to decorate this year – casual or glam?  Hmmm…I think casual.

If you have been, thanks for reading. Have a great weekend everyone!

There’s a Storm Brewing!

There’s a Storm Brewing!

Good morning everyone!   Here in Canada’s Maritime provinces we have been preparing for a storm. Yesterday we had a lot of wind and rain.  Today we’re poised to receive more wind and rain. It’s supposed to continue into Wednesday and possibly Thursday.

I have not hooked a loop on “Where Are We Going?” all weekend. Instead I’ve been prepping for the storm. I have also been decluttering and cleaning in preparation for decorating for Christmas.

Yesterday I decided to repurpose some red linen I had into kitchen linens. I washed it, but it came out stiff and wrinkled. I’m thinking it’s too thick for what I want. I may rethink that plan.

I decided it was time to use up the two quarts of pears on my table.  I made a pear marmalade with candied ginger and lime in it.  At this point I’m making preserves, jams, jellies and pickles as gifts. This recipe came from an old Bernardin cookbook.

I am still hoping to finish “Where Are We Going?” this week. It just became a bit more of a nuisance because there are Christmas decorations blocking access to my wool stripper. I am just being lazy about moving them…

Today is baking day for me.  It’s time to bake some muffins.  I’m not sure what else I’ll bake. It depends on time and energy.  I do have other things I’d like to do…like rug hooking. But I’m thinking posting some of my new work in the shop area on this website wouldn’t be a bad idea either.

If you have been, thanks for reading!  Have a great week everyone!

Beeswax Wraps, Sewing & Rug Hooking

Beeswax Wraps, Sewing & Rug Hooking

Good evening everyone!  I went to my trusty colour wheel to check out possibilities for my border on “Where Are We Going?”, and I have a couple of candidates.  I’m going to try them this week and see how it goes.

I spent the weekend hemming two sets of curtains – one for our bedroom and the other for the guest room.

I was also thinking about, planning, and doing activities related to Christmas.  I decided it was time to change things up a bit in the Christmas home decor end of things a week or so ago.  This weekend I pulled out some Christmas fabric I’ve had for a while, and sewed four cushion covers.  I have three more to go.  There are four different fabrics and sizes of covers for different cushions.

In other crafting news, I have old glass Tupperware and the lids are wearing out.  In an effort to be environmentally sensitive I decided to try and make some beeswax bowl toppers. I invited a friend over and we spent the afternoon making them.  They are super easy, once you get the hang of them, and very effective.  We followed instructions from All Things Being Eco .  We also bought the pine rosin and jojoba oil through All Things Being Eco.

Well that’s it for today. If you have been, thanks for reading everyone!  Take care and have a great week!

Progress…

Progress…

Good evening everyone!  I’ve been working more on “Where Are We Going?” this week.  I’m almost finished the picture part. Now to colour plan my half border. I think I’ll use the blue from the blue jeans in it.  Other than that I’m not sure.  I have some last minute colour planning to do!

Aside from hooking on that, I’ve been shortening curtains so we have a better pair for the basement bedroom. It will be nice to get something decent up.

I’m already surrounded by Christmas planning. Michaels had tree sales on before Remembrance Day, and we needed a new tree. I purchased one 40% off. I also picked out some Christmas florals, ribbon, and general craft supplies. I have plans…! 🙂

I sorted through my Christmas ornaments and separated them by colour family.  I sold most of my ornaments and decorations before we moved.  I haven’t replaced them because our house is so small, I don’t know how or where we’d store them after Christmas!  I am going to have to put my thinking cap on this year.

Well, if you have been, thanks for reading!  I hope you have a lovely weekend!

Home Again!

Home Again!

Good afternoon everyone! We had a great time in New Brunswick.  Lovely scenery and lovely people. Company will be leaving soon and I am deep into planning November.

I finished knitting the baby hat. All that’s left is to mail it.

I am making a short list of projects to work on. Mostly it includes WIP’s, or Works In Progress.

  • I have “Doom” sitting beside my chair to finish hooking.
  • I also want to finish the quilt I started at 17 years of age.  I won’t say how long it’s been.  Suffice it to say I have taken my own sweet time hand stitching it.
  • I also have the South Korean appliqué quilt to finish.
  • I want to make some beeswax toppers for bowls.
  • I want to move onto hooking the fishing shack series I have planned.

That’s more than enough for November. Right now I’m just glad to have the baby hat finished.

If you have been, thanks for reading. Have a great weekend everyone!

Stash Utilization

Stash Utilization

Good afternoon everyone!  I have a confession to make.  I am a fibre-aholic.  I collect flibre…preferably silk, wool, and cotton.  I have it in yarn form and in fabric form.  I rug hook, so I have a lot both types for that.  I also spin, which makes the situation worse!  I have two large Rubbermaid Roughneck totes full of natural fibre yarn.  It’s time to use some up.

We had a new baby born into the extended family.  Needless to say, some things have halted. Like rug hooking. I’m sending a gift her way, and maybe a little something for the mom.  I’m eyeing my yarn stash…maybe some soft hand dyed hand spun merino.  Maybe not the best for a baby.  I’m thinking about it.  It’s not superwash wool.

That’s where my thoughts are going today. That and just catching up on grocery shopping.

I hope everyone is  having a great day.  If you have been, thanks for reading!

Weekly Review – Hectic Days

Weekly Review – Hectic Days

Hi everyone!  It’s been a busy week!  I am preparing for our Canadian Korean friend to visit for Thanksgiving.  We are having a mixed Thanksgiving dinner – both Canadian and Korean food. I’ve been busy preparing ahead of time.  I made trips to various Korean grocers today, and serious cooking starts tomorrow.

Aside from that, my greeting  cards have been taking back seat due to an unexpected opportunity falling into my lap.  I will not say much now, but I did spend a lot of time arranging for decent photos of some work.  The photographer was here this week to do the job.  I also rewrote my bio for this opportunity.

Aside from the above, I have been busy cooking and baking this week.  I baked a double batch of Blueberry Oatmeal Muffins, lots of 2-bite Brownies, a couple of Lemon Tea Loaves, a triple batch of whole wheat dinner rolls, Chocolate Chip Cookies and Granola. My freezer is full!

I also caved and learned to make yogurt in my Instant Pot.  I started with a gallon of reconstituted skim milk and ended up with two litres of yogurt and two litres of whey after straining it.  I used half the whey in my dinner roll recipe and, boy, did they turn out light and fluffy!  I’m plotting how to use the rest of the whey. I hear you can freeze it for later use.

Well, if you have been, thanks for reading!

Happy Thanksgiving

to all my fellow Canadians!

Weekly Review

Weekly Review

Good evening everyone!  It’s been a busy week.  I’ve spent it processing food for the winter, emptying out the kitchen and preparing for the kitchen renovation. Tomorrow is the day the old kitchen is dismantled.

First the food processing. I love home canned peaches and prefer them over store bought. So on Monday Hubby and I went on a gorgeous drive up to Wolfville, Nova Scotia to the farm markets – ostensibly to look for peaches. Well, that ended up with us coming back with over $70 worth of goods, including a $45/2 litre jug of maple syrup.  I picked up two huge zucchini for $1 each, a 5 pound basket of green tomatoes, two 5 pound bags of beets, a bag of salad greens, four 2 quart baskets of peaches and a quart of fresh strawberries.

In the end the peaches weren’t ripe enough to can.  I didn’t have time for them to ripen before the kitchen came out, so I decided to try to make peach jam.  I ended up with peach syrup. All’s good. Hubby says it tastes great for pancakes!  I made zucchini relish, pickled beets, green tomato chutney, and chow-chow.

On a whim, after watching a YouTube video on a channel named Frugal Jo, I made a clementine marmalade of 1/4 cup sugar per clementine.  I simmered it for half an hour and was rewarded with a lovely fridge/freezer marmalade.

My goal this week was to sell the stove and give away the microwave. After some back and forth with potential buyers, it appeared that was not going to happen. So we will remove them tomorrow with the cabinets.  The stove is still listed online for sale.  The microwave will be taken to recycling.

We were out buying paint for the kitchen too.  Hubby prepped some of the walls today and is going to do the painting as soon as the old kitchen cabinets are removed.

We’ve spent the last two days emptying out the kitchen.  We have a lot of stuff in there.  I’m culling as I go, and will continue to cull as things go back into the kitchen.

So…nothing happened in rug hooking this week.  Nor anything creative for that matter.  BUT…great strides were made in preparation for the kitchen renovation.  I did spend time organizing the paper mess of recipes and kitchen information on my cookbook shelf.  I’m still not finished with that, but I’m getting there!

If you have been, thanks for reading!  Have a great weekend everyone!

 

 

Running Late!

Running Late!

Well I totally forgot about posting to my blog yesterday!  A lot happened the last three days.

  • We sold the kitchen…well we met the people buying it and got a deposit on it.  It comes out Saturday and they’re going to pick it up Monday.
  • We sold the big old fridge and it is gone, but not without leaving some battle scars on the house on its way out. Hubby has to repaint the entry anyways.
  • The stove has a pending sale on it
  • The microwave/range hood combo has a broken handle, so we’re giving it away.  It still works and I still use it. It’s just a cosmetic mess.
  • I spent a lot of time canning and processing food for the freezer this weekend. Bread & Butter Pickles, Zucchini Relish, Salsa, Peach Jam, and Clementine Marmalade (really for the fridge/freezer). I also processed green beans. I still have about 2 quarts of peaches ripening in a bag, a basket of green tomatoes, and 4 pounds of beets calling my name.
  • I sprained my foot standing too long?!  Hence I’ve commandeered Hubby’s help with canning. I’m taking a lot of rests and doing as much sitting down as possible.
  • We went on a trip to the farm markets in the Annapolis Valley for fresh produce for preserving.
  •  I spent down time, with my foot up, sorting through cooking magazines, recipes and kitchen notes.

Well that’s it.  Not one loop pulled, but a lot of worthwhile activity here…short of spraining my foot. I hope everyone else is having a productive week!

If you have been reading, thank-you!  Have a great week everyone!

Thankful Tuesday

Thankful Tuesday

Today is a red letter day!  There is finally a start on our IKEA kitchen renovation!   We’ve been waiting a year.  It took six months to get all the materials and supplies.  We still haven’t bought appliances. We’re buying from IKEA. We were assured they have plenty in stock in their local warehouse.  We shall see.  I’m looking forward to a functional kitchen I can also use for dyeing fibre.

Meanwhile, I took this weekend off. Sunday we travelled to visit family.  It was a long, but nice drive.

My plans for the week?  Finish hooking “The Weave” and colour plan the next poetry wall hanging.  Probably “The Bubble”.

Otherwise?  It’s canning, processing and freezing food time. It’s time to stock up for winter.  This past weekend I made bread and butter pickles, blueberry honey jam, strawberry apple lemon jam and red currant jelly.

I’m busy organizing my cupboards, fridge and freezers. We have two freezers – one small chest freezer and a medium sized upright one. I put in an online order for some wire mesh bins to help organize the upright freezer.  I’m looking forward to having those in hand in a week or so.

Lots to do!

If you have been, thanks for reading! Have a great rest of your week everyone!

The Weave

The Weave

It is with sadness that I write this post. Judy Carter, a well known rug hooker and teacher, is no longer with us.  I have Judy’s book “Hooking Animals”, and was looking forward to taking a class from her one day.  I regret not having made a decision to take that class sooner.  I have never met Judy, but her impact can be felt throughout the rug hooking community amongst those who did. And it was a significant impact.  She will be missed.

Today, as I worked on “The Weave” – a rug about a poem on the stages of life – I thought about Judy.  I think it is time to add some darks, for the sad and the dark times in our lives.  May you rest in peace Judy.

If you have been, thanks for reading.

Weird Weekend

Weird Weekend

Hi everyone!  A late post today. No rug hooking related work done on the weekend. Instead I chose to be outside and managed to get heat exhaustion two days in a row. Today was my second covid vaccine shot. Except for my morning and evening walks I stayed indoors…drinking lots of water.

I’ve been browsing and reading library books. I have Deanne Fitzpatrick’s “Making a Life” in front of me. I want to start that next.

I also have some poetry books on the go, and a natural history book for Nova Scotia. I’ve been using the “Book of Nature Poetry” edited by J. Patrick Lewis to find poems to add to my nature journal pages.  Sunday we were up to Cape Blomidon and I painted a very poor quality watercolour of the cliffs and ocean. I just accepted it for what it was. Some days my art works and some days it doesn’t. Today I added a poem about the sea by Lillian Moore and felt a bit better about the page.

On our way to the Cape we stopped at The Naked Crepe in Wolfville, Nova Scotia.  It’s a cute restaurant with patio on Main Street.  We ate indoors, out of the sun, and were rewarded by an excellent view of the chefs making the crepes.  It was fascinating to watch!

There were a considerable number of options on the menu.  The servings were quite large.  Still, we found room for dessert crepes.  We had the Thai spicy chicken crepe, the donair crepe, the lemon curd crepe and the berry fruit medley crepe.  My favourite was the berry fruit medley crepe.  It came with sweetened yogurt in a crepe shaped like a cup, surrounded by a mixture of berries and fruit drizzled with maple syrup.  We waddled out of there and headed back to the car to continue our trip to the Cape.

Well, if you have been, thanks for reading.  Hopefully I’ll have something related to rug hooking to post the end of this week.  Have a great week everyone!

Monday Meanderings

Monday Meanderings

This weekend was spent rug hooking, talking with family, sewing a doll outfit and gardening.

I also sent an email to the photographer whose photos I am using as a base for some of my nature journaling. I wanted to make sure he knew I was using his photos and how. He was okay with it. His name is John Phillips. He’s a Nova Scotia photographer. Check out his website here!

I hooked more on “Gyeongju”.  I have one quarter of the border left to do – about four to five hours work.  I’m looking forward to finishing.

My doll now has a new sailor dress outfit.  This is my childhood doll and I’ve been meaning to sew her a new outfit for years.  I never really prioritized it though. But Saturday was the day. I sewed the hat, dress and panties.  The hat looks big, but actually just fits the back of the head.

My niece looked at it and commented the doll looked scary. Lol!  Poor doll is over 55 years old and missing a few eyelashes and a pinkie finger.  The missing lashes and discoloured face from age definitely give  it a different look! Lol!

This week I am pushing to finish hooking “Gyeongju” and blocking it.  I am also transplanting plants into pots for the deck garden.  I have extra plants to unload on friends.  I have a couple friends lined up already.

If you have been, thanks for reading.  I hope you have a great week!

 

Summer Oasis

Summer Oasis

Good morning everyone!  The weather was lovely this past weekend.  I confess I didn’t do much creative.  Instead Hubby and I spent it in the yard preparing for summer.

We had garden soil delivered on Friday. In our marriage I have the know how, having taken some courses and had some experience with gardening, and Hubby is the brawn, having a strong heart and back.  He also has experience in the gardening arena.  So I was able to look over the four different types of soil we had, give him directions for mixing them appropriately, and help fill containers.

The first container he filled was a long, narrow raised bed we built a couple weekends ago.  We built it with lumber we traded for with a neighbour.  The neighbour had some lovely 2x8s and 4x4s. We had fresh cedar from a tree we had to have cut down because it was growing in power lines.  Fair trade!  The planter was filled Friday and planted.

Saturday was another nice day. Hubby put together the second Adirondack chair.

Sunday we were busy.  We put up the gazebo in the morning, and put the deck furniture in it.  Then, in the afternoon, we took all the soil out of the 12+ pots, loosened up root balls of various plants that were growing, and added soil to top up and refresh the pots. I’m surprised and happy to report that mint, strawberries, oregano, tarragon, and lavender, and more have all come back up this year!

Hubby rewarded himself for a job well done by going on a bicycle ride. I enjoyed the deck with a cup of tea. Aaaah!  I can feel summer coming now!  Next weekend I hope to plant the rest of the containers.  For now, I feel the urge to set up my rug hooking on the deck!

If you have been, thanks for reading!  Talk to you all later.  Have a great week everyone!

 

Lockdown Plans

Lockdown Plans

So for those of you who don’t know, all of Nova Scotia (where we live) has been placed in lockdown. We’re talking a super tight, don’t go out of your house unless you have to, lockdown. One person per household is allowed out to buy essentials – food, gas and medications – and it has to be the same individual throughout lockdown. We are allowed to walk, masked and socially distanced. If we’re a 1-2 person household, we can team up with another 1-2 person household and keep them in our bubble. When we do go shopping for groceries, gas or meds, we are not supposed to leave our community. It’s a bit stressful here right now.

So…our soil delivery for our newly made raised bed was canceled.  The greenhouse staff called and said maybe next week, maybe not until the end of May.  So much for my early spring crop. But it is what it is, and people need to stay safe!

Instead of focusing on the outdoors, which is hard to do anyways with all the rain forecast, I decided to focus on indoors.  Saturday I spent all day picking up my studio.  It was a mess!  It still has a lot of extra stuff in it that needs culling and putting away, but it’s better than before.  I made an eight minute video of the current state of my studio here.  It’s middling.   There’s still a lot to do in there.  However there is progress.  Last year this time we were dealing with this.

I also took time to do a quick two minute video of my nature journal.  It can be found here.  I hope to work on sketching some flowers I received for Mother’s Day.  I’m also contemplating a Great Blue Heron page for my nature journal.

Today I’m sitting down with my hook and working on “Gyeongju”.  I am also doing paperwork for my business.

If you have been, thanks for reading.  Have a great week!

 

 

Weekly Review

Weekly Review

It’s been a busy week for me. In between rug hooking, yard cleanup, sewing and gardening, there’s also been nature journaling. I’m really enjoying learning more about observing and recording nature, even though I struggle with the scientific end of it…primarily thinking of questions to ask about my observations. But, the drawing practice is invaluable!

I spent some time watching YouTube videos by John Muir Laws on nature journaling.  He uses coloured pencils outdoors.  Because I’ve been working from photographs indoors, I’ve been using watercolours.  You can use either in either location.  But I’m thinking I could use a greater variety of journals, at a more affordable price, if I learned to use coloured pencils properly.  So I put an order into Michaels craft store for curbside pickup of a few pencils and a case to hold them.

Here are more watercolour pages in my nature journal.

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In other news, I finally finished the last project for the L.L. Bean shirts that belonged to my dad when he passed away three years ago.  Dad loved L.L. Bean clothes – their shirts in particular.  He had white hair and blue eyes. He could wear just about any colour, and did!  The bright orange nylon one became a cushion cover for his widow. The rest I took and sewed into various projects – one for each descendant.  You can find “The Shirt Project” video here .

While all of the projects but one were finished within a few months of Dad’s death, one project in particular was vexing. One of my nephews wanted a knife sheath for a jackknife. The shirts just aren’t built for that. But I happened to have some tanned moose hide, so thought I’d try. Then we had to focus on moving. It wasn’t till last fall that I picked up the project again. I broke many needles and couldn’t sew the moose hide on my home machine, even with leather needles. So, after consultation with my nephew, I sewed this alternative gift. Here’s the final project for my last nephew.

Hubby and I also put together a raised garden bed to run along the side of our raised deck.  We traded our deformed cedar we had to have cut down (it was growing in power lines) for some milled lumber leftover from a neighbour.


We also put together a Muskoka Bear chair, which is really a type of Adirondack chair.  Hubby is working on the matching chair now.  It came in pieces.  Hubby sanded it, painted it and assembled it.  The colour is Aruba Blue by Benjamin Moore, and I just love it!

Well, if you have been, thanks for reading!  I hope you all have a wonderful, productive weekend.  Take care.

Plans for the Week

Plans for the Week

I have a busy week ahead of me. I have two Zoom meetings. Plus we need to run errands and catch up on household chores. I have a meeting with my framer about the embroidery and handwork I am having framed.  In-between all that I hope to hook more on the border of “Gyeongju” (aka the South Korean roof tile end caps rug), and embellish more on “Time”.

Both my hubby and I receive our first shots of the Covid vaccine this week. I’m building in some down time just in case.  I have some reading to catch up on.  There were also quite a few freebies from Sketchbook Revival 2021 that I’d like to follow up on.  Plus a friend sent me some bird photos to practice nature journaling.

I’m also trying to put my photos in order to have some printed professionally.  I am planning another series.

A Belated Weekly Review

A Belated Weekly Review

Hi everyone. I’ve been very busy with Workshop Week 2 projects and with prepping for a couple of winter storms. I’ve also been prepping for a kitchen renovation.

First, Workshop Week 2 was a great learning experience. I really enjoyed Donna Mulholland’s class on abstracts. I finished two small 6” x 6” pieces based on her provided templates. It was informative and fun


My second class was with Nadine Flagel. It was a Text to Textile class. We were to take a piece of literature or poem and try to create a rug design based on the imagery in the text, without including any text! I had drawn a pattern before class, but it had text in it..a lot of text. So I scrapped that idea. My poem was on time. I drew two more patterns and did not like them. In the end, I think I know what I want to do. I’m just concerned the finished wallhanging will lack interest.

Also, Tuesday was Susan Feller’s fraktur class – Folk Art with Flair. I thought I would make a series of chair cushions (four, to be exact) for my kitchen chairs. I took forever to figure out the first cushion. Thanks for your patience and help Susan! I learned a lot about frakturs in Susan’s class.

Wednesday I took a break from classes and attended the evening hook-in. It was interesting listening to people talk about potential future Workshop Week classes. I managed to accomplish a lot of hooking in one and a half hours.

Thursday I had Beth Miller’s class on how to create a Market Tote Bag. This was just a fun class for me. I was able to draw a mandala on my tote and start hooking. I’ve made many totes, lined and unlined, with box corners, so there really isn’t much new in this class for me. But I really enjoy Beth as a teacher and I was ready for a relaxing class after my double hitter on Tuesday. I will probably use my tote for projects rather than the market.

Friday was the last day and we had the opportunity to listen to a panel discussion in which the instructors for the course talked about what inspired them.

There are a few follow up sessions I think. I have two scheduled for sure. I’m a bit unsure if there’s a third one or not. I may have already missed it. I don’t know. That would be one concern I have. I don’t think I will take as many courses next time as this time. I have so much going on otherwise that I lost track of when various Zoom meetings were. My inbox is very busy. I’m hoping I receive notice the day before the follow up sessions.

Overall impressions? Workshop Week 2 was very well done again! Thank-you for all your hard work Donna, Nadine, Susan, Karen, Beth, Laura, and Meryl! I appreciate your efforts.  I’m looking forward to Workshop Week 3 in the fall!

In other news…

I’ve been designing a kitchen online, and in and out of IKEA fine tuning that design. We had a kitchen installer in today. Basically we’re working as our own general contractor. This is going to consume a fair bit of time at some point. Right now we’re still in the planning phase. I hope to have a new kitchen by summer.

We have a couple of winter storms passing through in succession between now and Wednesday. I put in a grocery order and hope to pick up tomorrow, before the first storm hits.

If you’ve been reading, thanks! Have a good weekend, what’s left of it!

Oops!  I’m Late!

Oops! I’m Late!

I promised y’all a post on Friday, and here it is Saturday evening!  I’ve been busy and wiped by turn. This past week has been busy.

Those of you who follow me on Instagram and/or Facebook will have seen the cushion covers I finished this week.  I knit the cream coloured ones as the front and back of a pullover sweater for myself. They are from Handcrafter Cotton. I had to resize the sweater to fit, and design my own sleeve pattern. That’s where I stopped many years ago.  So I decided enough is enough. I did not want to finish the sweater and I liked the colour to go in my living room.  Into two cushion covers it went!  A friend gave me some fabric for backing.

What really started me going was the desire to finish the cushion covers from the pieces I knit last January (2020). This yarn is a gorgeous soft bamboo.  I used the same fabric to back these as the previous cushions.

Having finished cushions, I turned my eye towards rug hooking. I watched Tracy Jamar’s retrospective of her work over the last twenty years and really enjoyed it. I also enjoyed my time with Donna Mulholland and the other ladies on Thursday.

I finished “Autumn” while on Zoom with Donna, et al, but I’m not showing it here until I’m satisfied with it. If you want to see it in its current condition you’ll have to check Jean Ottosen Studios on Instagram or Facebook.  I’m not happy with it and plan to change it until I am.

I then turned to home reorganization and decluttering.  A friend came over Friday afternoon and evening to help. She has very good spatial sense. I was impressed. I’ve only had to change a few things since she left.

Today I went for a walk with my walking buddy. We just started walking regularly this week. It’s been very good for me.  I hope it is for her too.

I’ve also been exploring new recipes with my new Instant Pot. It’s been illuminating, and yummy!

Well,, that’s been my week in a nutshell.  I didn’t get everything done I wanted to, but I did finish the cushion project. One baby step at a time!

Monday Meanderings

Monday Meanderings

Hi everyone!  I have made some moves in planning more crafting this weekend. I definitely took a good long break over the holidays. This week I will be off sewing cushion covers with a friend. Time to change up the cushions in my living room and bedroom. I’m also contemplating seat pads in the eating area of our kitchen. Now if I were smart I’d be hooking all these! But I need these, like yesterday, and have more hooking plans on the horizon.

I’ll also be attending Tracy Jamar’s Zoom talk through In The Studio on how she went from there to here in her hooking. I am curious about her work and her transition when she downsized, as I am in that position myself.

I’ll also be attending a show and tell with another group of rug hookers via Zoom. Donna Mulholland will be demonstrating how she finishes or stretches her pieces over a frame. Should be fun!

I received some homework questions from Nadine Flagel for Workshop Week, which is Feb. 1st – 5th. I’m looking forward to getting in the groove again. I’ve signed up for three classes.

I still have two hooked pieces I want to finish – Autumn and my South Korea rug.

As for my reorganization efforts, I finished the spice cabinet.

Then worked on clearing my counter.  Here is a before picture:

Here is an after photo:

Finally! I can see the back of the counter!

Then I emptied my linen closet and moved all my fibre dyeing equipment and supplies, and most of my dye books, into it. I had about $30 CAD worth of help from Dollarama in the form of portable shelving and lidded bins. I’m going try and get decent photos for you. Here it is from two angles – a dye kitchen in a 24” linen closet!

It is a lot of work settling into a new home.  But it’s also very satisfying when you find a good home for the things that matter.  I had hoped to do my dyeing separate from the food kitchen, in my laundry room.  However someone had other plans for the laundry room.  Thankfully I use fairly safe dyes and follow strict dyeing procedures!

Well that’s my current update.  It’s a busy week and I better get at it!  Have a great week everyone!

 

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