Wednesday, October 22, 2014

A Gem of a Place

 **Warning - no quilting reported in this post**

Last Saturday I spent the day with my mom and dad leisurely traveling the backroads of Southern Alberta. It was such a beautiful October Fall day.

We were going back to my dad's growing up years. It was so fun to hear the stories and see the places. In all my years growing up I had never been there.

We started out at the Crowfoot Cemetery. The Cairn is all that is left of the cemetery itself. It is in the middle of a farmer's field and in the middle of 'nowhere'.

 My dad's brother (Ernest Koop) passed away when he was only one.

What a special memory to be there with my dad!!

We then took a drive just down the road from the Cairn to the old ferry crossing which has been shut down since the floods of 2013. You can see where the water came up to and how it cut into the bank.

The sky was unbelievable that day.

From there we went to the Bassano Dam. Dad recounted school picnic outings there many years ago.

Even there you could see the evidence of the floods. Look at all that beautiful sand from the river bottom.

Then it was off to the old homestead. Can you imagine raising six children in a house this size? I don't think those years were particularly prosperous.

Dad told stories about sliding down the roof of the old barn. Looks perfect, don't you think?

Just a hop, skip and jump from the old homestead was the Gem Cemetery. Apparently, the church used to stand in the same yard.

My grandpa's cousins are buried there. I think dad said that the Dyck's sponsored Grandpa to come to Canada from Russia.

One last stop in the hamlet of Gem. All that is there is a bank of post boxes, a church, a couple of houses and a school. I see on the sign that they just celebrated their 100th birthday!

My mom and I had been talking for quite some time about stopping at the cemetery where her grandparents (my great grandparents) are buried. Again, I had never been there. Took us a while but we found them. (sorry mom, was the only picture I had of you by the grave site)

The only thing that I regret was that I didn't take some quilts to photograph with some of the old buildings and gnarly trees we saw!!

So after a busy day, travelling the country roads, I can't resist but end with another beautiful sunset picture taken the very next night.

Make happy memories this week!


Monday, October 13, 2014

Around the World Blog Hop

I was nominated by Britany from Pickles Quilting
to take part in the 'Around the World Blog Hop'

If you have never checked out her blog, 
please take a moment to do so. 

In fact she is having her one year blogiversary with a giveaway.

She considers herself a newbie but certainly has tackled
and completed some unique and fun projects.

I have been quilting now for six years and have been blogging
for just over three years now.
My how the time flies!

So to get down to the following questions I need to answer.

What am I currently working on?

 I am currently working on a quilt for my son. 
He as been very patient with me as I often get side tracked with various other projects.

I only have one more row to put on, a couple of borders
and then to quilt it.

I also need to put a border on my Arkansas Road Quilt.

And I am in the midst of sewing this one together. 
Another favourite of mine.

I just recently finished the top of my wedding ring quilt, probably 
my most challenging project to date.
Another one to add to my completed pile but not quilted yet.

How does my work differ from others?

That's hard to say and I'm not sure it really does.
I am a person who loves what I consider 'happy colours' 
and most of my work reflects that.

If I like it, I generally will try it.

I've tried my hand at several different techniques.

Printing on fabric from my computer . . .

Paper piecing  . . .

Hexagons . . .

I like to try new blocks and new techniques.
I have yet to put in a zipper (been dragging my feet on that one)
and set in seams but I had no problem learning to sew curves.

Why do I write / create what I do?

My need to quilt came out of a time
that was not so happy for me.
I was looking for an outlet to combat what what
transpiring in my life at the time.

I think that is why I like 'happy' colours!

A natural progression took place in that I started to blog.
I wanted a place to showcase my quilting and record
what I had accomplished or was doing.
Some posts are sprinkled with family news and holiday reports.
In some ways it was more for me than the general public,
however, it is a nice boost when others take notice of your work.

How does my writing / creative process work?

I have always been a creator of sorts and look for inspiration
in books, magazines, blogs, friends and yes, even while watching
a movie.  I have seen many a pattern in which I declare that
it would make a lovely block or quilt.

I have designed my own place mats out of a panel 
and I have been know to tweak patterns
a little here and little there. 

I have never designed anything bigger because the math involved
stumps me little but if I would just take the time to think
it through I could have it figured out.
Too busy sewing I guess!!

While quilting I often listen to music from a Paris radio station 
(my favourite place on this planet) 
and dream of going back someday.
Sometimes, I have a person in mind that I want to make a quilt for 
and love it if I have the fabric on hand.
I often find myself thinking of and praying for the recipient as I quilt along.

This was one I made for my aunt who passed away earlier this year.
I hear that she never had this quilt off her bed.

Other times, I don't really have anyone in mind but when 
the time comes, the right person pops into your mind.

This was one that I had made long before it became a wedding
gift for my niece and her husband.

I aim to have a few quilts ready so that when a need 
comes up I will be ready.
I have a rolodex in my head of quilts or block that I want and need to try.
I figure I'll never live long enough to do all that is on my list . . .

I've really enjoyed writing this blog and I hope you enjoy reading it as much.

I failed in my quest to find three people to tag. 
I do, however, have one lovely blogger, Alice from Alidiza Blog.
Alice, by her own admission, considers herself
a Compulsive Quilter and Fabric Addict among other things.
She has an awesome blog and is truly an accomplished quilter.
I especially like her Weekender bag and can 
only hope to one day make a project like that.

Thanks for stopping by and "Happy Thanksgiving" to all.


Sunday, October 5, 2014

Finding Joy in Hexagons

It's been quite a while since I picked up my hexagons
but they seem to be bringing me joy these days.

Funny how it's the small things in life that can really tickle your fancy.

Since the evenings come earlier and Fall has settled in, 
it seems fitting to sit and watch t.v. and do some handwork.

Over the past two weeks I have seven completed flowers done
and these lovelies ready to go.

Somehow they just make me smile.

Hope you all had a great weekend and that the week
ahead brings you much joy.


Friday, September 26, 2014


“Victory belongs to the most persevering” 
– Napoleon Bonaparte

I am so excited to write this post as it means that 
I have finished the top of my Double Wedding Ring quilt!!

There were days that I would not have believed that it would be 
or could be possible to finish this off. 

It wasn’t that it was terribly difficult but it seemed a long time with little progress.  

Once I really put my mind to it though, it was a sweet victory

When I look back at my first post about my Double Wedding Ring quit it was late October 2013

I guess that’s not too bad considering I work full time, hosted my daughter for 8 months this year 
and had a couple of holidays away from home.

This quilt gave me much agony right at the beginning. 

I had a very difficult time in pulling fabrics for this quilt and after a few failures, 
I finally settled on the greens and pinks with a pop of yellow. 

Very happy with the outcome as I feel it was very close to what I envisioned – a definite success.

This quilt is not perfect and I had to keep reminding myself that 
it is a ‘homemade’ project and not mass produced. 

I was very happy to learn a new skill – sewing curves. 

 This will open the possibilities of other quilts that I have in mind.

As mentioned before, I plan to have this quilt quilted. 
Definitely well worth it considering the work involved.

Phew . . . . now I get to move on and finish up my son’s quilt. 

Perhaps it could even get done before Christmas. 

Wouldn’t he be surprised?!

Savouring my finish this weekend and linking up with
AmandaJean at Crazy Mom Quilts

Have a fantastic weekend!


Saturday, September 13, 2014

Best Laid Plans

Really thought I would have finished my double wedding ring quilt.

Somehow working full time, being tired, 
running errands, paying bills, catching up on finances, 
going to the dentist and tramping through the snow
this week has hampered my plans to finish off this week.

I don't mind snow but when it falls on September 8 I do have a bit of a problem with that.


My big tree out my front didn't fair so well with all the heavy snow.
Looks like I'll loose that one branch.
Such a shame.

Because I had decided to do an extra row on my wedding ring quilt
I had to cut out a few more pieces.
That was a challenge as I had already given back the templates 
to my friend who lives a couple of hours away.  
I didn't want to wait until I could get out there 
so I made my own templates and they worked good.  

Netflix came in handy here.

I hope next week I can report a finish!


Saturday, September 6, 2014

Crazy, Beautiful, Love Filled Summer

I see again that it has been for-ev-er since I have posted!
How does that happen?!
This has been the most wonderful summer for a long time.

It started in June with a lovely visit with my son in Victoria.

I had time to get away on holidays in early July with my parents.

Was wonderful to reunite with family in July and again in August for a wedding.

My sister and I went to see Michael W Smith in concert.  So fun!!

I spent time with my lovely daughter throughout the summer.

I helped as she got ready to head off to do her Masters in Toronto at Ryerson.

Watched beautiful summer sunsets. 

That meant little time for sewing but that's okay.
I did, however, manage a day away with friends and a couple of days at a friends house to quilt.
So still working away on the same quilt. 
Perhaps next week I can say I have finished this quilt top.

Different seasons in life.  

Life would be too boring if we did the same thing over and over.

There were some very hard and sad moments this summer but all in all, I wouldn't trade it.
At the end of it all there is always a rainbow of hope.

Hope your summer was good.  
I'm looking forward to fall and some time for quilting.