Monday, September 14, 2020

HELLO EARLY FALL



The weather is changing over to FALL, and a very welcome site! 
Nights are cool and the day temps this week will climb to high 80's but then a steady decrease in temps. This is very helpful for the Cameron Peak Fire, steady decrease in temps. Still little containment on the fire but so much work has been done in the past week. Thank you fire fighters for all your work! 

Knitting: not much done in the last week, quilting has taken center stage.
I have several quilts that are close to being done and really need to focus my attention on these quilts and get them completed. I set up my big quilting frame and loaded the Amish Quilt on, this quilt has been in the hand quilting stage for years and only the borders are left. I had forgotten how much easier it is to hand quilt on this frame. Nothing to gather, its all right there, ready to sit down to for a few stitches or an hour of stitching. This quilt will be finished by Christmas this year, (I hope). 
I have started the BOM quilt designed by DiFord, Sutton Grange, who sadly passed away late spring of 2020.
The fabrics sing to my heart,  a mix of appliqué and machine piecing with an overload of color and prints. A year long BOM quilt, perfect for COVID isolation going into the fall and continuing through 2021. 

Not a book read or started the past week, but plenty of books stacking up on my table to be read. 

The weekend was a mixture of calmness, quilting, and movie watching. 
 
Saying goodbye to late Summer and hello to early Fall.

Wednesday, September 9, 2020

EARTH, WIND and FIRE





Hmmm.....my fire  and ash snowing pictures will not load to blogger, hmmm.
Labor Day Weekend here on the Front Range was long, hot, smoke fill, ash snowing, sun blocked out dark and well---just very concerning. Monday morning opening the drapes, the outside looked apocalyptic, not a bird in the sky and nor a chirp could be heard, so quiet and orangie dark! With city lights on all through the day and temps in town hung out at 60 degrees, while all around us it was 93 degrees. This is what being under a smoke plume from a major forrest fire is like. Friday night, the fire started expanding but still not out of control, with the hot, dry , windy conditions by Monday morning the fire exploded and took a ten mile run on all three sides, roaring down the canyon (east), bursting into Rocky Mountain National Park (south), and threatening the Red Feathers area (north). Alerts were beeping every 5-30 minutes to evacuate these area "now" and the Voluntary Evacuation lines being widely extended. A cold front was pushing in with winds 50 miles/hour pushing this fire, which has so much beetle kill timber for fuel to burn. By midnight the temps were really dropping and it started to rain lightly thru the night, around 5 am snow was falling.....thank you Jesus! It snowed on and off all day and will continue til late morning Wednesday, with temps staying cold, 29Deg tonight. This is much needed time for the fire fighters to regroup, bring in more resources and get lines around this monster and go on the offense. { rest assured, Fort Collins is in NO danger}, this fire is in the high country/foot hills, however their are several thousand homes in these areas that are being threaten, 100+K acres is approx. 102 sq. miles that has burned. Thankfully no life has been lost.  This week the temps will slowly climb into the high 80's, with drying conditions. Praying for fire containment and early snows to come into the Northern Front Range.

Sunday, I did manage to finish 2 dresses for the kids but no knitting done this past week. After Monday and the apocalyptic atmosphere,  by Tuesday I was exhausted. Soup was made and that was it!
Oh 2020 I am ready to see you in the rear view mirror.

Monday, September 7, 2020

LABOR DAY WEEKEND


Out and about.



Bird Bingo


Love a little boy who can put on his own pants! Inside out and backwards!


Smoke  from Cameron Fire, Estes Park, Rocky Mountain National Park.
Thanks Julie for photo, My Sister Knits.


Sunrise Sunday


Smoke cloud over house


Our weekend was full, with the littles for a sleep over on Friday. This is the kids favorite day and they know what Friday means...."Sleep Over at Mimi's house". We eat dinner, (and a not very healthy one at that), then it's bath time, popcorn (their favorite), a movie and the grand finale; "sleep over".  Pretty simple stuff makes a 2 and 4 year old happy. Saturday, out for a walk, (before the smoke moves in), and Gus mastered the balance bike. Bird Bingo was a BIG hit as well.

By Saturday afternoon the smoke from the Cameron Fire was covering Northern Colorado. Window closed and the air turned on, it was also 100 degrees outside. Yes, I am soo over these high temps and the smoke clouds covering us are also dropping lots of ashes. I have had a sinus headache all weekend. But, the BEST news, SNOW! Yes, I will be like a little kid this afternoon with my nose glued to the window waiting for a 60 degree temperature drop, and the.....glorious snow! Oh, how we need this, 1) it will help the fire that now has crossed into Rocky Mountain National Park on the NW side and has moved further down the canyon, 2) we need a break in these ridiculous high temps. Besides isolating from people with COVID, lately I feel like a mole hiding in my basement from heat and smoke! Tuesday morning I will be outside with woolens and boots on, looking up and being grateful for cold-wet snow! 

While holding up in the basement on Sunday, I started this twilling dress for Betty. Today the buttons will go on, after I watch a You Tube tutorial on using Bernia button system. Buttons are my nightmare in the garment making adventure, I just cannot seem to master this much needed technique. Any help would be appreciated. 

 

Friday, September 4, 2020

A LITTLE TRIP









We went on a little trip up North to a Reservoir in Wyoming. Their was conversation with my sister, BIL, Caitlin and her family, food that was out of this world, sand, beach and lots of sun! Temps were warm but not crazy! Sunsets-beautiful and the moon rising----breath taking. Something that didn't happen....knitting, not one stitch! Never before have I gone out camping and not spent time knitting! 
September is here, one of my favorite months. The promise of cool weather, in fact we have snow in the forecast, here, at 5500ft! Not unusual, but getting more rare with Global Warming. Tuesday though, they are saying in the high 30's and snow, what a welcome sight that will be. Snow will be helpful for the fires burning North of us and will break the heat cycle,(the day before the snow, temps in high90's). Does this make one feel a little crazy,  no, if you live in Colorado by the mountains, the weather can and will change in extreme directions on a dime. I love it!

Wednesday, August 26, 2020

FILLING TIME








Time has become almost surreal 6 months into this pandemic, a National Disaster for sure, that just keeps cycling around with more bad news. In the West, the more bad news - the fires! We have two burning, one within 10 miles from us, the other 40 miles. Both are burning hot enough for the smoke to block out the sun, almost daily. It's nearly impossible to sit for 20 minutes on the porch, fresh air, not at this time! Daily temps. are hanging around 99-100 degrees, we need cold and snow! The RNC is not helping my mental health
 with all the HATE they are spewing on TV! Oh, 2020 you have been one hard year!

But, a little break yesterday....Caitlin and I canned Roma Tomatoes. Jason first roasted them,    (4 cases in less than 10 minutes), never again will I do the blanching method to remove skins.
I thought we were going to make tomato sauce, the kind that is ready to pour and use for pasta dishes. Caitlin wanted to can whole tomatoes, because they are so much more versatile, open a jar, make sauce (by adding garlic and spices), open a jar and use the whole tomatoes poured over a roast, or make soup, spicy V-8 juice.......
You get the idea! So whole tomatoes it was and it was fast. We started at 1pm and I pulled the last jars out at 6pm. Not bad for a winter supply of deliciousness! 

The Brown and Pink quilt is on the machine and it is going to be slowing going!  Though it will be beautiful when completed and I have the time! 

Reading: 
~Caste: This is a hard read for me, but a much needed read for me! Please, if you are interested in Race and Race relations, this is the book you are looking for, get it, read it slow and digest the information. 
~The Mountains Sing- Is about a family in Viet Nam that survives the years of wars from the French through the Americans and last-the Communist Party. WOW. 


Tuesday, August 18, 2020

KEEPING IT SIMPLE while THE WORLD IS ON FIRE












The kiddos were here on the weekend and I came up with an art project that, 1) they loved and 2) lasted most of the morning....BINGO that's a win! I had used up some fabric on a few bolts and hated to just toss the cardboard , so I decided to put them on the table with a bunch of art supplies and said 'go for it'. 'Go for it' they did, what started as making -'people board's' went to pure unrestricted artistic expression. I love that kind of kid art! Let them run with imagination.

We have a GIANT fire burning about 50 miles up the canyon from us and the smoke is awful! It has been blocking out the sun for days, some days worse than others. So besides for COVID reasons, we are locked inside our homes due to the thick smoke. Oy Vey, what else is 2020 going to throw at us?

A few projects that I have completed are:
--sweater for Gus
---rainbow socks that I am keeping for me
---the disaster quilt for Gus
I call it the disaster quilt because of all the mistakes in the quilt. One would think- this is the first quilt I have ever made and I have close to about 150 under my sewing belt. One thing that I finally cried "uncle" on -is my straight edge ruler. It must be 15-20 years old and has few markings  left on it that I can read and the edge is all gouged and nicked. I ordered a new one! If Disaster quilt was not going to little Gus I would of thrown it out. It almost landed in the trash several times but I thought, Gus is just going to drag it through the dirt, stomp on it and use in fort building....well now, it may just be perfect for him. Betty saw it and thought it was so "beautiful" and asked if it was for her?
Me: no Honey this is for Gus.
Betty: But Mimi, Gus does not SHARE! 
Betty:  I know, You can make me one too!
Me: Of course I will!
The quilt is made from scraps and I mean true scraps. I have buckets of small scrappy quilt fabrics. I can't bear to throw out fabric, it's expensive and I can always make something from the scraps. 

I'm anxiously awaiting a Di Ford -BOM quilt and book to arrive, it will be the first Di Ford quilt for me. Lots of piecing, (so glad I ordered that new ruler), and some appliquéing, best of both worlds. 
Also on the agenda is a Hexie Quilt that will be done by hand! Hope I live long enough to complete this beautiful quilt, another quilt inspired by Di Ford.
Presently, I am machine quilting the Brown and Pink Reproduction Quilt. 

Reading:
The Good Lord Bird by James Mc Bride
Caste by Isabel Wilkerson
Needled to Death by Maggie Sefton

Saturday, August 8, 2020

PEACHES










Last Wednesday was spent canning 2 cases of peaches with Caitlin. We ended up with 29 quarts and about 7 whole HUGE peaches (left over)! Not bad for about 3 hours of work. 
The kitchen 'flow' was hard, I had the canning flow down in my old house to a smooth sailing ship. This new kitchen is much bigger and lots of room to move, but have to figure out the 'flow'! Also, without stone counters we had to bring in ply wood so the jars wouldn't burn the counters and table. Yup, Caitlin and I have both done that at one time or another. 
What is on the agenda this week coming up, I am not sure but I bet their will be something and it will be fun!

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