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.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

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!

 

Weekly Review

Weekly Review

Well I did not accomplish any crafting this week. I did accomplish a lot of decluttering and reorganizing. Mostly in the kitchen.

Today we ran errands in the morning and had a meeting in the afternoon. Then off to pick up a 2×4 from some friends in our bubble. Of course that meant tea. I love tea with friends!

What did we want with one 2×4? The 2×4 was cut down this evening to make one spice stand in the kitchen cupboard. Tomorrow we’ll do the second one.

This all started when the square glass spice bottles I ordered from ULine arrived today. I spent the evening transferring spices from plastic bags to jars. I often cook with spices, using them instead of salt and pepper in my food. I also cook a wide variety of food. I love cooking! There were close to forty different spices to make room for in that cupboard.

The 2×4 was cut to fit the width of the cupboard and laid flat about an inch from the back of the cupboard. Then another piece was laid flat on top of it, but pushed back to the back of the cupboard. About 2/3 of it resting on the 2×4 piece below. It created a step like situation on which to set spice jars.

This is a very temporary situation until we have our kitchen renovated, which we hope will happen this year. It’s better than the previous situation, which was having a hiking boot box full of spices spilling out onto the countertop!

Here’s to tomorrow. May I get the second shelf done and then work on moving my dye equipment and supplies upstairs!

Happy New Year!

Happy New Year!

May 2021 be a whole sight better than 2020!

We received our second big dump of snow this past weekend. It is melting almost as quickly as it fell.

I took the week between Christmas and New Year’s off.  I spent a lot of time visiting in my five person bubble and talking to family and friends on Zoom, FaceTime, Messenger, WhatsApp and the phone.  What did we ever do before technology?!

I’ve done nothing in regards to rug hooking, or quilting, or sewing.  I’ve had a complete break. However, I am going to have to get back into the swing of things soon.  Workshop Week is coming up the beginning of February, and I’ve signed up for a lot of classes. I have some prep work to do.  I need to pick out a poem for one class. I’ll use one of my children’s poems again.  I’m just not sure which poem yet.

  • I also need to finish binding my quilt and fixing the hand quilting,
  • I want to finish my South Korea rug,
  • I need to finish my nephew’s Grampy gift,
  • I need to finish my “Autumn” wall hanging.  I’m so close!
  • and I need to clean up my studio. It’s a disaster!

On the house front, a friend in our bubble has offered to come help me organize my kitchen a bit better. Hubby and I have been looking for furniture that might help.  We spent a lot of time reorganizing last week.  Of course one thing leads to another, and by the end of our part of the  “kitchen “ reorganization we had worked on every room in the house.  We still will need our friend to come mid-January and help us finish the job.

So, while I have not been hooking or quilting or sewing, I have been rather busy.  I am looking forward to getting the house more organized and making it more livable. May 2021 be a good year for that.

If you’ve been reading, thanks! I’ll check in with you on Friday again.

Meandering Monday

Meandering Monday

Good morning everyone! It’s a slow meandering kind of day here. It’s overcast and raining off and on. The snow that fell last week will soon be gone.

I slept in this morning. Last evening we had a friend from our Covid 5-person bubble over for a cookie exchange, supper, and game. It was a fun time.

I made tortieres and pies yesterday. The tortieres are in the freezer for the holidays. One of the pies was for dessert last night. I am reserving the other pie for a neighbour who plowed our driveway last week unasked. These guys are the nicest neighbours we’ve ever had. He’s been very good about explaining things to Hubby about the house and the neighbourhood.

This week I am hoping to work more on binding my quilt. Once I’m done that I have to go back and fix the hand quilting. It was originally quilted about forty years ago and, what with all our moves, it has seen better days.

I’m feeling a little tired today, and still have errands to run. Plus I want to fit a walk in between rain showers. I’m off to make a grocery list.

Take care everyone! Have a great week!

Monday Ramblings

Monday Ramblings

The photo attached to this post shows the Tree Decorating Party food. We made two types of chicken wings, vegetable sticks and hummus, homemade brown bread a spinach dip, mini spinach quiche, and shrimp canapés. A friend brought us pumpkin tarts as a surprise. There were four of us and we had a great feed! The food lasted a day or so here. Don’t know about what the others took home. It was a great feed!

I’ve done nothing crafty since Friday, but hopefully this week I’ll finish a few projects. I’m still stopped on the moose cushion cover, the quilt, and my rug hooking. I think it’s the miserable weather. That plus preparations for Christmas.

This past weekend I spent visiting with relatives online. Today I helped a friend decorate her Christmas tree. Tomorrow is errand day and appointment day. At some point I have to do some Christmas baking. Maybe tonight. Plus put in another grocery order for curbside pick up. I may get to my crafting Wednesday. We’ll see.

Here’s hoping my blog finds you all well and enjoying the season as much as possible in this strange year of Covid-19. Thanks for reading!

Weekly Review

Weekly Review

I’ve had an enjoyable week with family and friends, albeit most of it long distance due to Covid restrictions. Our area of Nova Scotia is restricted to our five person bubbles right now. We included a couple of friends in our bubble. Wednesday both friends were over and we sewed and visited. It was a great opportunity for me to make headway on some projects.

I’ve had a challenging week with projects. You know how sometimes a project just eats up your time and you feel as if nothing was accomplished at the end of the day? Well the moose cushion cover has been one such project. It should have been a quick and easy project, but it hasn’t been. The machine appliqué stitch I used has been a bear to rip out. It needed ripping because the tension on my sewing machine went wonky last week. I finally sat down and dealt with it. I had also accidentally ripped the Black Watch plaid back of the cushion cover while ripping out the side seam of the cushion cover. I found a suitable patch for that. That is one project I am going to be glad to have finished!

I have also been hand sewing the binding of the Trip-Around-The-World quilt. I’m looking forward to finishing it and enjoying it on our bed.

This past weekend was taken up with other activities. Christmas is fast approaching. We, like a lot of people, are used to more social gatherings this time of year. Covid is putting an interesting twist on things. We are still having a tree decorating party, only this year it’s a house decorating party. I think we’re having at least one other person over. I also have a small cookie exchange plan in progress for closer to Christmas…with the same individual.

I am lamenting the state of my Christmas home decor. It is a mishmash of items that do not coordinate. I don’t know what I was thinking when I packed it to move! I think there will be some serious decisions made this holiday season in regards to what stays, what goes, and what comes into the house.

Well, that’s it for now. If you’ve been reading, thanks! I hope you all have a great week! Till Friday…Jean

Weekly Review

Weekly Review

Lots happened this week. We finally received our upright freezer – only four months after ordering it. I now have a small fridge freezer, a small chest freezer, and a medium size upright freezer. That has got to be enough for two people! I started filling and rearranging them this week.

I also finished sewing the hanging sleeves on the quilt. We went shopping for a curtain rod to hang it from. It’s more like a cafe rod. The quilt will be at the top of the bed by tonight.

I’m almost finished “Autumn”. I have just a bit of hooking to do around the letters on one side of the wall hanging. Then it’s onto finishing.

I struggled greatly and have the binding sewn onto one side of the Trip-Around-The-World quilt. I’ve pinned it down the whole way around the other side, ready for hand stitching. The quilt itself is not square, so it looks dreadful from the front. But then I remind myself I was only 17 when I started it, and I didn’t have a clue what I was doing. It was a major learning experience.

I almost finished my nephew’s cushion cover when my sewing machine went wonky. The tension is totally whacked. I took the threading out and rethreaded the entire thing. Crossing my fingers it works. Today is the day to try it again. I hope it does work, because I have another face mask order to fill!

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

A Busy Weekend

A Busy Weekend

Hi everyone. I’m posting a bit late. We have company from inside the Atlantic Bubble this weekend. Plus one of our daughters and her husband came over Thursday evening for supper and a rousing game of “Terraforming Mars”. We’re still learning, but it’s still fun! Last evening my sister and niece arrived for the weekend. They taught us how to play Settlers of Catan. Tonight we have company coming over to play “Wingspan”. We’re still learning that one too. We’re having a fun weekend of games!

However that means not much rug hooking is being done. I have hooked a bit on “Autumn”, but not much else. Today we’ve been running errands. I’ll check back in on Monday.

Production!

Production!

Face masks are finished!

Ken doll clothes are happening. There is a great disparity in sizes between free online patterns and commercial patterns.

Knife sheath attempt after all. Can’t get my domestic machine to sew through the suede leather, even with a leather needle. Will take moose suede to a leather worker and see what they say.

In my pile of things to finish by my chair. Notice the hooked heart hanging and coasters from February. They’ll be ready for next February.

I hope everyone has a great weekend, and a productive one. Till next time, take care everyone!

It SOLD!

It SOLD!

Our house sold late Friday evening! We are moving!…end of November…driving across Canada. Are we crazy?! We’ll see.

Since I last posted I caught some wicked cold and have been fighting it off. Yesterday was the first day in a long time that I’ve felt half decent.

We had company arrive on last Friday for a few days, and again last evening. She is an ex-boarder of ours and due to leave the country soon to fly home. We will miss her. We’ve been binging on games, visiting, and watching a movie.

Last Sunday we had a lovely trip to the Qu’Appelle Valley Lumsden and Craven areas. We stopped in Lumsden to take a couple of walks. Then we stopped at 641 Grill & Bar in Craven for a late brunch. It was a delight and we stuffed ourselves. I took my own Korean Honey Citron Tea to keep from coughing all over everyone. The waitress kindly provided copious amounts of hot water in a teapot and a mug.

Last Sunday evening (Canadian Thanksgiving weekend) was eventful. Our basement sewer line backed up…for the second time in 25 years. It was in the line under the house. We live in a 90 year old house, so you can imagine the issues it might have. It was, unfortunately, backed up in the bathroom our company was using. So Monday morning, Canadian Thanksgiving, Hubby called in a plumber to clean it out. They were great! It was cleaned out by the time I was out of bed! Hubby dealt with the whole thing.

Last Monday I woke up feeling much better. We decided we were too full and inactive to justify three regular meals in one day, let alone two regular and one large Thanksgiving meal, so we had just two meals – breakfast and lupper (which is somewhere between lunch and supper). We had a lovely Thanksgiving meal of roasted turkey breast and thigh, cranberry jelly (homemade), baked sweet potato, tossed green salad, pumpkin pie, and apple pie…with whipped cream or ice-cream…or both… Afterwards we decided to go to the mall to walk. It was raining when we left and snowing when we came home!

Nothing creative has been accomplished last week or this. Too sick and too much house stuff going on.

I did find out a dear elderly friend from church passed away this weekend. I will miss her dearly. She always greeted me with a hug, and most everyone else too! She had what I referred to as a hugging ministry! She will be missed by a lot of people.

I hope everyone has a great week. Take care!

Monthly (?) Update

Monthly (?) Update

Hi everyone. I haven’t posted for a couple of reasons. 1) I’ve been super busy with the move and medical happenings. 2) I’ve been having website issues. I am not a happy camper on either front because they take me away from my creative activities.

On the medical front…MRI is done. No results yet, but I feel fine…except my back…which was the reason for the MRI. I’ll wait a while and see if I receive a phone call from the doctor’s office in regards to it. No call is a good thing. If I don’t hear anything in about a month’s time I’ll call them just to double check everything is okay.

On the moving front, the house has been up for sale for almost two weeks now. We had three showings the first week and two this week. Kind of hoping for more, but we shall see. Like I said above, I’m waiting for about a month for medical results, so if the house doesn’t sell right away I won’t be disappointed.

The sump pump fix was a waste of money. The seepage was coming in even with it, and it wasn’t kicking in at all. So Hubby, under my direction, re-sloped the land at that corner of the house, away from the house. Then he caulked some thick plastic to the foundation and covered it with red shale. I suggested he redirect the downspout into the alley instead of onto the lawn. We took the opportunity to outline the entire area and the front flower bed it abuts against with lawn edging. That will hopefully keep weeds down.

After that we had a couple afternoons of rain and saw no return of the seepage in the basement. So we had new carpet laid. Then Hubby painted the basement and installed baseboards. It looks positively lovely down there!

Still…some nibbles on the house, but no offers.

As for my blog…grrr! I’ve been trying to set up a system whereby I can post from my cell phone or tablet to my blog. This is supposed to be easy, but is not. I cannot get it to work…at all. It posts to my old blog, but not my current one. Very frustrating. I think I’ll be buying a new laptop in my future, to be able to post to my blog while traveling and before we get internet set up wherever we end up.

Nothing creative happening here. Though I am reading “The Secret Lives of Color” by Kassia St. Claire. It’s a fascinating look at the historical side of color. I’m having fun reading and sharing the stories with people.

Have a great day everyone!

It’s Warming Up!

It’s Warming Up!

Wow! It’s only -5 Celsius out there today! LOL Well I guess it’s all relative. After about a month of -30 Celsius weather, this is downright balmy! Hubby is feeling better and is in the kitchen making Chicken Rice Soup. Yes, he caught that cold/flu bug after me and had it for all of 48 hours. I am soooo jealous! I wish I had short illnesses like that. I am looking forward to the soup tonight.

At any rate, after our two or three weeks of illness, we’re back at doing things around the house. Hubby is renovating and I’m back at the cardiac gym three times a week. We canceled the GoodFood meals. I found them to be great while we were sick and excellent quality and variety. However they are a tad on the expensive side. I can feed us 21 meals for what they were charging for 3 meals.

I made a menu plan and grocery list the other day before heading out grocery shopping. Picked up $120 CAD worth of groceries for about two weeks or more of food for Hubby and I. I found some good deals on meat. Came home and prepped the meat for easy use in meals.

I used to do mega-cooking. That’s where you cook all the meals for a month (or however long you want) at one time (usually over the course of a weekend) and put it in the freezer in meal sized amounts to pull out and reheat as needed. However that takes too much of my energy now. So my plan is to double cook meals. That just means making double batches of meals, eating one, and freezing the leftovers for later.

Hubby is still busy renovating the house. He is silent on when he thinks the house will be ready for sale. We’ll see. For now he is working on the basement, having finished all the upstairs BUT the front entry closet doors, which are an odd size.

I’m back at decluttering and selling used items online. Slowly getting rid of excess. I also had a good friend stop in and give me a sketchbook. An artist can always use one of those! She also brought her celery tops, which she doesn’t eat. As I was making chicken stock at the time, I just tossed them all in. Her timing was excellent!

As far as hooking goes…I have started hooking my South Korea rug and am not happy with it. I want to ‘fix’ it before posting a photo.

I also have not done any scrapbooking because of this illness. I need to have some photos developed first. I’ve temporarily given up on the idea of digital scrapbooking. The Forever program I was looking at requires a PC for full use of the site and I work on an Apple platform. There are work arounds, and I’ll have to look more in-depth at those before making a final decision.

I hope everyone has a great couple of weeks! I will be back then to post more.

Baby it’s cold outside!

Baby it’s cold outside!

Actually, it has warmed up since last night. But for the last two weeks we in Regina have been in a deep freeze of -30 Celsius or lower. I have two winter parkas. My friends laugh. I have the regular parka good to about -25 C, but when it goes lower I pull out my Eddie Bauer goose down parka good to who-knows-how-cold! It never disappoints. I’ve been wearing it the last few days, after finally finding it amongst all our packed items.

Yeah, packed items…about that move…sigh. This past week has been a string of medical appointments that have kind of left me whirling. There are, apparently, more tests to do, more medication to adjust to, and being careful of my stress levels to boot.

Hubby and I are trying to decide the best way to do the move. It is looking more and more like it will be a two stage move. Stage one will see us go into an apartment locally until the medical situation calms down. Then, once that is all settled, we’ll plan the actual move east. It’s a pain to do it this way, but I think it’s what’s best for my health overall. It is also a plan that has the support of my doctors.

Despite that negative news, I am still getting out and about. A friend gave us symphony tickets last weekend and we had a great time listening to a cellist and visiting with friends we hadn’t seen in ages. That resulted in a few invitations being exchanged.

We also went with friends to a local buffet for a Valentine’s Day dinner. We joined our church friends there and had a blast!

Hubby and I also went out Wednesday to a favorite local cafe, Le Macaron, for dessert and tea this week. I try to spell off bad news with good experiences. So I threw as many good experiences into my week as I could this past week!

I also had a haircut done in the home of my delightful hair dresser, mom to a new baby boy. She makes me laugh and is good for my spirits.

We’ve also been over to a friend’s place to visit and play games with her and her 15 year old daughter…quite a few times.

We are still enjoying GoodFood.ca meals. We order three a week. This week the three meals actually fed us five meals. Our appetites aren’t as big as they used to be when we were younger.

This week we are looking forward to our first bread delivery. Jim’s Bread from outside town delivers Surprise Baskets every two weeks to homes who pay up front for the privilege. So for $240CAD we get 5-7 loaves or packages of breadstuff every two weeks for 12 weeks. He includes bread, buns, and sweet dough treats of various sorts…things like cinnamon buns, soft pretzels, etc. Hubby and I couldn’t go through 5-7 loaves of breadstuff in two weeks, so we plan on freezing some to share with company and friends later.

Not much creative happening here. I’ve been sorting photos and memorabilia for the 2003 scrapbook. I’ve been exploring digital scrapbooking, but am not sure I’ll bite the bullet. I think I’ll wait and see.

We continue to sort through my genealogy papers. Hubby is redoing my mother’s family history using strictly primary source documentation…that means official documents. A lot of my mother’s family was done on stories handed down through the generations. Her family is Irish. My brother is in Ireland for awhile now and he and his wife are helping us unearth what we can from that side of the ocean.

Chocolate Dipped Strawberries for Valentine’s Day. Yum!
Easter Week Post

Easter Week Post

Hi everyone.  You probably won’t hear from me on Friday, so I’m posting mid-week.

  • I’ve spent time working on my new bullet journal, preparing it for the next few months starting Easter Sunday – April 1st.
  • I’ve finished the first fingerless mitt and am about the start the second one.
  • My friend came back from the other city in time to help her daughter at the craft and bake sale Saturday.  I think they had a good time and made some money.  Time will tell if they do it again.
  • I finished reading “Six Hours One Friday” by Max Lucado.

It’s a busy rest of the week and weekend ahead.  We have company coming for Easter.  We have five at the dinner table Saturday evening and ten for an Easter buffet Sunday evening.

Our company is of Ukrainian heritage, so there will be a lot of Ukrainian food.  I hear we will be making perogies (pyrohy) Saturday afternoon. There will also be a traditional Ukrainian Easter basket. Plus some Baked Cottage Cheese.  Company is also bringing fiddleheads and asparagus!!!  We are going to dine well.

As Hubby is of Danish descent we will also make a nod to Danish tradition by having a salmon dish with rodgrod (a raspberry jello/pudding) for dessert on Saturday evening.  And, as some of our guests are Chinese and some Korean, we will incorporate whatever they bring to the feast as well.  I’ve tried to make sure there are some familiar food items available for them.  So it’s roast pork, broccoli, and sweet potatoes.  Everything else will be new I think.

I’ve had a request for my cinnamon buns for Sunday morning breakfast, but need to wait for company to arrive with some frozen pumpkin puree Saturday morning to make them.

Hubby and I spent today finishing packing some boxes that were in the living room, and rearranging things to make room for ten people to sit.  Just general tidying up.  We brought our round drop leaf table and chairs upstairs to help hold the desserts or drinks.  We’ll have to see how it works out.

I’ve packed my iron and sold my ironing board, so the tablecloth will be a bit bedraggled and in need of an ironing job.  But it will be covered with food anyways, so hopefully no one will notice.

This week I have to bake bread yet, and bake a carrot cake birthday cake with cream cheese frosting.  We are celebrating three March birthdays on Sunday too.

Plus there’s the usual Easter services to partake in.  It’s going to be an interesting holiday!

Easter Menus…company arrives before noon Saturday…

Saturday Lunch: leftovers from the previous night and fresh cinnamon buns
Saturday Supper: Salad, asparagus, salmon custard, perogies (pyrohy), brown and wild rice, rodgrod (a raspberry pudding made with cornstarch) and whipping cream.
Sunday Breakfast: Cinnamon buns and fruit.  This is open to adjustment if we feel the need.
Sunday Lunch: contents of the Ukrainian Easter basket – cottage cheese, kobasa (Ukranian sausage), krysanky (dyed hard boiled eggs), beet and horseradish relish (or horseradish), green onions, babka (a bread), paska (another bread), parsley, butter, and any other Ukrainian meat products company can find to bring.
Sunday Supper: Salad, roast pork, sweet potatoes, broccoli, fiddleheads, sauerkraut, baked cottage cheese, perogies (pyrohy), carrot cake with cream cheese frosting, and ice-cream.

 

WIP Thursday

WIP Thursday

everyones-an-artist

Hi everyone!  I’m up early today.  For some reason my sleep patterns are off kilter. I wish my American friends a very

Happy Thanksgiving!

I’ve spent most of this week working on my website.  It’s not finished or ready yet, but it’s getting there.  Mostly I’m posting product.  I hope to finish product posting next week, but we’ll see.  I’m still coming across the odd wall hanging I don’t have a picture of yet!

No hooking on “Moss” this week. Or knitting for that matter.  I’ve been working on my Gale courses as well as the website.

Plus I’m still reading “Everyone’s an Artist”.  It’s a pretty good read. It starts out by saying how everyone needs to be a bit creative to be the best at their job, and then the rest of the book goes on to say how you can be more creative.  It covers the main character traits of artists and relates them to the every day person.

I’m also trying to decide if I want to take my artwork in a different direction or not. This is always a touchy subject, as my inclination touches a raw nerve with some people.  My nature work and children’s work is an extension of my past experiences.  This new direction would be darker, and I’m not sure the world needs that right now.  Still, I may hook a few pieces just for myself…to work some things out of my system.

Hope everyone has a great day! 🙂