Tuesday, December 31, 2013

A couple of projects

I have not been idle.

I finished sewing the braid strip for the BOM "Cathy's Carousel" that began in October but that I just found out about. Pam over at Mad About Patchwork is hosting it. She just posted part three and I do plan to catch up. I still have to trim the sides of the braid, add the end triangles and then add the side strips.

I have also been knitting a toque - done with Patons Classic Wool in Wedgewood. As you can see, it self stripes and in this case, the stripes went slightly angled. The pattern is a freebie from Ravelry.

This is just one of two colour catchers that I put into the washing machine as I was washing a whole lot of batiks that I plan on using in a future project. I really didn't think I would get this much colour coming out of the fabrics. The colour catchers are not available in Canada (I don't know why) but my little box was purchased for me by my youngest daughter when she was living in London, England.

So now I am linking up with The Needle and Thread Network and also Esther's blog.
Pop on over to check out what other people have been up to over the holidays.

I hope you all have a very healthy and creative New Year in 2014.

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

A Very Merry Christmas

from my house to yours!

Monday, December 23, 2013

We have Power!

Saturday night, at 11:00 p.m., our power went out. It turns out that we weren't the only ones. Over 250,000 homes were affected.

The power outage was caused by an ice storm. This is the view from our backyard.

There were a lot of tree branches that came down with the weight of the ice.

The view down the street. My neighbour always keeps his walk free of ice and snow. They use their side door to enter so the front stairs are not that important.

The view to the north. You can just about make out that there is a white vehicle under the tree branch on the left.

This is the vehicle. I don't think there is much damage to it but the owner was having problems contacting his insurance company on Sunday.

It wasn't long before these guys showed up...

to put up some yellow tape around the tree branch and vehicle.

That's the owner on the right.

On the home front, this is how my husband decided we could have a cup of tea, coffee, or...

some chicken noodle cup-a-soup. We were cold, our youngest daughter and her boyfriend, who live 4 subway stops away were also without power. Our middle daughter and her boyfriend had power. They live in the west end and our eldest son and his wife, who live north of us, also had power. We popped in to see them, to warm up and watch a video and were treated to snacks, wine and a great dinner of veggie lasagna and salad. They very generously offered their extra bedroom for the night but we had two senior cats that needed us at home. After that we went to the show to see Hunger Games 2 with our youngest daughter and her boyfriend. It was quite busy there because it was one place that you could get warm for a few hours. 
This morning the power went back on just before 8:00 a.m. The thermostat in the house read 56F (13C) when I decided to look at it so I think it went a bit below that. I am waiting until it warms up a bit more before I continue on with my baking. I managed a bunch of jam thumbprints on Saturday night and was going to make some Chinese Almond cookies on Sunday so that's what I will start with. I have to make some more thumbprints because I got rave reviews on them.

 I will leave you with this photo of Digit who is trying to get warm in front of the heat register. Pixel is on the heat register in the kitchen (it's on the floor and there's an area rug on top.) I feel so fortunate to have heat and electricity because I know that there are still many more households out there without heat. The hydro workers are out in full force but some may not get their power restored until Christmas or Boxing Day.

Thursday, December 19, 2013

New, a new project!

We all have so many things to do and of course, there are those projects on hold until after the holidays BUT, I have been antsy to do something creative. I found a block of the month that started in October and ....it's Canadian. It's different from the other BOMs out there. The blocks are NOT the same size and there's a variety of techniques to try out.

 I took this photo from the site of Mad About Patchwork. Pam is hosting the BOM. I have no idea what fabrics I will be using but definitely something from the stash. Here's the introduction to Cathy's Carousel.

These are just some of the fabrics I picked off my shelves. I'm thinking blues and greens with maybe some yellow and red thrown in for accent.

This is just the beginning of part one of Cathy's Carousel. It's the focal point of the French braid. I liked Cathy's version and decided to border my central square too. Here's part one.

I really want to continue this. It's a pullover but...

I have told myself that I need to put these pieces together first. I started it a year ago - not for anyone in particular. It's a little cardigan. I really don't like putting the pieces together but the shoulders are already done. I know there's not much left to do but it's just one of those things. That's why I gave myself the ultimatum. Nothing continuing and nothing started in knitting until this is put together.

I need to get some floors washed now so that's it for creativity until later...

I'm linking up with The Needle and Thread Network. Pop on over.

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Tuesday Treat

I LOVE this photo (and little Luc, of course.)

Too bad it's only an ornament.

Little Patric.


I hope everyone's decorating is non-stressful.

Saturday, December 14, 2013

Christmas Quilt-a-long Reveal

Well, now's the time.

Way back in the summer I joined a group of ladies in the Christmas QAL and Challenge. The challenge was to make a quilt where the outer dimensions did not exceed 96 inches and we could not use either red or green.

Here it is, all complete. (click on any of the photos to enlarge them.)
The pattern was a freebie from Connecting Threads called Gifts Galore.

I altered the pattern to meet the requirements of the challenge. 
My table runner measures 31 inches across and...

15 inches in length. 
The total adds up to 92" - well within the rules and there is no red or green at all. It was machine pieced, machine appliqued, hand embroidered and machine quilted.

To see the other entries in this Christmas challenge, visit the hostess of the month, Sue at her blog.

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Something for a little boy and something for me

I have this pattern. I like it because it can take the place of a stocking.

I made this for my grandson Luc.

Years ago I made the two stockings on the right. I used upholstery samples that my friend gave me and I tea dyed some fun fur for the cuffs.
 This is the snowman fabric I am using to make a Christmas mitt for ...

 Luc's brother Patric.

Before I left this little guy to come home, he stood up on his own for the very first time. I was the first one to witness it. I had been reading a story to Patric and Luc, sitting on the floor, leaning against Patric's crib. Patric was just sitting beside me and as I turned my head, this little guy had used the crib rails to pull himself up to a standing position. Apparently, he does it quite regularly now.

 This little fellow is a chocolate moose. Not just any chocolate moose but...

he's a chocolate marshmallow Peep. Not as good, in my opinion, as regular vanilla marshmallow, but I love moose so I had to get these. 
I also bought more of the gingerbread man Peeps too. Tucked away, just for me.

This week I'm linking up with The Needle and Thread Network and with Esther's blog.
Go and be inspired.

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

One family - many quilts and little boys

I just got back from visiting my daughter's family in B.C. and while I was there, I noticed that she had several quilts. She doesn't quilt herself, although she does have a log cabin in denim started. These were all given to her or her sons or her husband and I decided to photograph them.

Remember polyester? Stretch polyester? The stuff that was popular in the 70s and never seemed to wear out? When I first started quilting I took a night school class and there was one lady there that used polyester. It makes for a heavy quilt. This is hand quilted and I do believe it was made by my daughter's mother -in-law. The backing is polyester too and I didn't check to see if there was any type of batting. As you can see, it's a spiderweb pattern.

This is one side of a flannel quilt I made for my daughter.

Here's the other side - the raggy side. There is no filler in the squares. I figured that two layers of flannel was enough. It is still used for warmth.

 This is a scrap quilt with a flannel backing that I picked up for $5.00 at a Christmas craft fair a couple of years ago. It's machine quilted and I really like the randomness of it all.

A fun snake quilt, again with a flannel backing, was made by friends for little Luc when he was a baby.

 These next three were all made by my daughter's neighbour, Karen MacDonald for Luc and Patric. The first and third ones were machine quilted and the second one was hand quilted.

 I love the colours in this coin quilt. I made it as a baby quilt in general for my daughter.

This is Luc's monkey quilt that I made when he was born.

And this, of course, is Patric's quilt. All of my quilts are hand quilted.

 Another flannel quilt that I made. It's fairly big and of course, is totally reversible. Not knowing if my daughter was expecting a girl or a boy, I made one side pink and ...

 the other side blue.

A wall hanging I made using Jenny of Elefantz' embroidery patterns to commemorate the purchase of the house they now live in.

I hope I have recorded them all. Now, here's the little boys that I have spent the past month with.

Going for a walk along the Fraser River.

Luc found some sand right beside the big rock.

The bench is a semi-permanent fixture. In the spring, when the snow melts off the mountains further up the river and the area gets flooded, the bench gets moved to higher ground. Luc's dad made the bench. It's one of two. The other one is in the garden.

  Shades of Tom Cruise doing his famous dance scene in Risky Business.

This is Luc's second advent goodie that he found in one of the socks I made. It's a little blue dog.

Little Patric and me.

Mother and son.

Patric is usually such a smiley little one. His top two teeth are about to break through.

Orange cat comes to say good morning and is great entertainment for Patric.

 Orange cat is never far from the boys. Unfortunately, because papa has allergies, the cats have to stay outside. They have a warm little house in the garage.

 Three generations.