Louisa Enright's Blog

Mainely Tipping Points

Late August 2021

with 3 comments

Turkey Tracks: August 26, 2021

Late August 2021

The rainy days have finally stopped, and the very long lawn grass dried out enough for me to mow on Tuesday.

It was rough going as my little electric mulching mower was not happy with the long and damp grass, but we persevered, and the job is done.

There is so much moisture in the system though, from all the rain, so the hotter days (mostly 80s) are creating a lot of humidity. Fortunately, the nights are cool. I’ve been running the dehumidifier downstairs for many weeks now, and that has helped a lot.

It’s been a busy week, but today and Friday are “open,” so AC and I will get out into the yard for much-need shrub pruning and weeding of one bed maybe. Other than the suddenly overgrown shrubs (they liked all the rain), the weeding is not out of control. The deer are though. They love my hostas.

Debbie Jeske, A Quilter’s Table blog, has been posting the sampler blocks she’s making. They are all done now but for the big center block that will come along now with this project.

I really like her blocks and her color choices. Take a look?

https://aquilterstable.blogspot.com/2021/08/summer-sampler-2021-providence.html?m=1

I really like all of Debbie’s work, actually. She is an inspiration.

And here is where I am with Tara Faughnan’s Wedding Ring pattern. This quilt is so much fun! And it is not hard. I will want to make it again with a different color palette.

The top two rows are done, and I’m working on the rings for the third-row centers. I think all the centers are now placed where they will stay now. This quilt is chewing up solid fabric scraps in the most pleasant way.

Enjoy this back end of summer before we head into fall. The seasonal wheel is turning here—the light has already changed a lot.

Written by louisaenright

August 26, 2021 at 9:00 am

It’s Water

leave a comment »

Turkey Tracks: August 19, 2021

It’s Water

And look at how clear and clean it is:

What a relief!

And here’s the rest of the Haskell’s crew who installed the new pump yesterday:

There was more drama, but more of the “usual suspect” variety.

Last night’s shower felt REALLY good.

We are getting “Fred” today—so I’m looking forward to a rainy day of sewing.

Here’s where the Tara Faughnan wedding ring pattern is now:

I’m still moving around color, but, hopefully, will sew the second row today. I just need a few more of the circles completed. I never how how they will look until I put them in place.

Written by louisaenright

August 19, 2021 at 9:20 am

Water Drama

with 3 comments

Turkey Tracks: August 18, 2021

Water Drama

Water drama occured here yesterday.  

I realized earlier in the summer that the well pump has been in place for around 20 years. A call to Haskell’s water revealed that an average life span is about 10 years.

I decided not to push this pump further and have a failure in the winter—especially as the well is NOT in a flat location that is easy to access.

Yesterday, Haskell’s came to take out the old well pump, but two men couldn’t get it out.  That well is somewhere around 300 feet deep!!!  The hose and electrical cord are, obviously, that long—and something was stuck so the hose just stretched when pulled rather than pulling the pump up. The issue was to get the HOSE OUT more than the pump. They couldn’t install a new system (pump, hose, electrical cord) that would put the new pump deep enough if the old hose was still in the well channel. If they could get enough hose out, they could cut it and just let the old pump drop into the well pipe so that it would just fall to the bottom of the well. But, the pump was simply not moving upwards.

Two more men came, and four men couldn’t budge the pump either.

So, Haskell’s called a very nice man (“CT”) who came with big equipment that could go up the steep bank and try to pull out the pump. He got here late afternoon—with Steven, one of Haskell’s two owners.  It took some time, and the hose broke once, but they finally pulled out the pump. I felt such relief when it came up.

Here’s the big equipment arriving on a flat bed trailer and preparing to go up the steep hill to the well head.

Here’s the equipment balanced on the hill after freeing the pump.

And here’s the equipment on the way DOWN the hill—so you can see how steep it is. You can see clearly that having the pump fail in winter with deep snow or ice on the ground would be a real problem.

And here’s what that stalwart pump looked like.

I am so grateful for the Haskell’s men and the very competent “CT” who came on such short notice to help solve this problem.

I decided to just start over with new hose, electric cord, etc.  It does not make sense to me to take a risk with equipment that is somewhere around 20 years old.  Especially with a well that deep, with our winter climate, and with the location of the well.

Obviously, I have no water in the house now. I filled containers from the house pipes when it became clear I would have no water for some time—but didn’t get much as I had been flushing toilets. It is a total reflex action to just reach back and flush a toilet. The Haskell’s men told me to empty the pipes from the downstairs tub, which makes sense given gravity.

So, I made a quick trip yesterday to Hannaford’s to get portable water—about 9 gallons, 5 gallons of which was in two big containers and all had to be lugged into the house from the garage.  All the toilets can’t flush unless one adds needed water.  And water has to be heated for dishes.  Last night I just got those rinsed as well as I could and put them in the dishwasher and kept dinner to a bare minimum in terms of pots and pans.  

I have a whole new respect for those people in Africa who have to walk miles to water and haul it back.  It’s HEAVY.

Haskell’s has promised to come today to put in the new pump.  This morning they will have to organize the new pipe/electric cord, I think.  And they have other scheduled jobs. But rain is coming for two days after today, so I’m still crossing my fingers for a resolution and getting water back TODAY. 

I won’t be taking water for granted from here on out.

It’s a gift.

Written by louisaenright

August 18, 2021 at 8:20 am

Mid-August 2021

with 3 comments

Turkey Tracks: August 14, 2021

Mid-August 2021

Hello, hello!

After 9 days of his visit here, I took this guy back to the Portland airport for his journey home:

I started missing him before he even left!

He is heading into his 18th birthday and his senior year in high school, which includes all the stressful college applications and worry about “what next.”

It was delicious to have 9 days to one-on-one time with him as I had not seen him (or any of the other family members in Charleston, SC, for two years).

While he worked on summer school assignments, due very soon now, I did get in some sewing. And what a fun, fun project this wedding ring quilt by Tara Faughnan is!

I am sewing together the the last block on the right in the upper row later today and will join it to the others. Each is 20 inches finished—so the quilt will eventually be 80 by 80 inches. Of course I am moving around colors—nothing is set in stone until I actually sew it, and the color ideas have already changed from this picture.

The garden is at that late August messy stage. EVERYTHING needs mowing or dead heading. But it is so hot and so humid that one gets drenched with sweat in short order outside. I did mow yesterday, but that was enough for one day.

Some of the trees are starting their fall colors. And the hummingbirds will be leaving very soon now. And the light has already changed rather a lot as the seasonal wheel starts to turn.

Written by louisaenright

August 14, 2021 at 7:51 am

A Summer Gift

with 3 comments

Turkey Tracks: August 7, 2021

A Summer Gift

This guy made a last minute trip up to see me:

He is 18 next month, a rising high school senior, and my oldest grandchild.

I am so touched that he wanted to come and spend NINE days with his grandmother.

I have not seen my family for two years now, and this grandson is now taller than anyone in his family.

Plus, he is a sweet as a summer day is long.

The Aurifil blog posted an interview with Edyta Sitar, whose work I’ve always admired. I met her when I made my solitary trip to the Houston Quilt Show years ago. She was so gracious and lovely, and I so enjoyed meeting her.

I’ve been really tempted by her house quilt—and there is a scrappy version in this post. Her original one was in the blue fabrics she so loves.

https://auribuzz.com/2021/08/06/a-chat-with-edyta-sitar/

Written by louisaenright

August 7, 2021 at 10:05 am

Funky Wedding Ring Quilt Top

with one comment

Turkey Tracks: August 2, 2021

Funky Wedding Ring Quilt Top

What a fun scrappy quilt!

It is so lively and so full of good energy. And I have not named it yet.

This is just a quick and dirty picture—and the quilt is hanging over another quilt in progress, so things look lumpy.

A reminder that this block comes from Freddy Moran and Gwen Marston and is in their book FREDDY AND GWEN COLLABORATE AGAIN: FRIENDS. I mixed printed and solid scraps in the blocks and am happy with how that evolved.

And here is what is going on BEHIND this quilt:

This quilt is designer Tara Faughnan’s “Wedding Ring” quilt.

It is so fun to make!

I have a busy day but can’t wait to spend some time today making more of the scrappy rings.

Fun “Pancakes”

with 2 comments

Turkey Tracks: July 31, 2021

Fun “Pancakes”

These fun “pancakes” have fast become a “go to” for a quick lunch.

They only take a few minutes to assemble. Using a cast iron frying pan gives strong heat without burning too.

Here’s a picture before they have browned so you can see ingredients:

I vary what I put into these delicious concoctions, but grated zucchini and the egg are the bulk and the glue that holds everything together. This one also has grated carrot and some chopped green onion. (I don’t try to chop the onion really fine.)

First, my thanks to Farmer Tom Griffin of the former CSA Hope’s Edge for the basic recipe which I have modified for my needs. For locals, Tom is holding a farmer’s market out at the farm for select hours two days a week: Wednesday afternoon (3:30) and Thursday morning (10:00). As always, his food is so fresh and delicious. I will include the recipe version he sent below my modifications.

For one person, grate one medium sized zucchini. Wrap it in a towel (I’ve been using those bamboo “paper” towels that can be reused over and over) and squeeze out the water. There will be a lot of water. You want at least a packed 1/2 cup of grated, squeezed zucchini.

Grate some carrot too, if you like.

Add some chopped onion—the sweet ones and green ones are in our markets now.

Add some grated cheese—I can use mozzarella, but cottage cheese or ricotta would likely work too. You can certainly use stronger cheeses (cheddar, etc.).

Add an egg.

Add about 2 tablespoons of brown rice flour—I use a sprouted one.

Add whatever herbs you might like and a bit of sea salt.

Mix it all up and fry it in a good fat—I’ve been using duck fat, but one could use ghee or beef tallow. Keep a medium, even heat, not too hot so the edges don’t get too brown too quickly. Turn once and maybe pat each pancake down flat with a spatula as it helps them cook evenly and faster.

***

Here’s the recipe from Tom:

Written by louisaenright

July 31, 2021 at 2:43 pm

“Fractures” Quilt

leave a comment »

Turkey Tracks: July 28, 2021

“Fractures” Quilt

I finished “Fractures” last night and hung it outside my quilt room this morning—after retiring one quilt and moving another.

I am really happy with this quilt.

Latifah Saafir was the guest designer for this year’s 7th month in season 3 of The Color Collective. She called her block “Tenderoni.”

Latifah spread out her block by using blank pieces of her fabric palette (which I really love), but I wanted to play with how the block worked when all were together without interruption. Latifah’s version, though, is a very handsome quilt and a better choice I think if one wants a bigger quilt.

I hand quilted with 12-wt cotton Sulky thread in various colors—using a Tulip Saskido needle.

Written by louisaenright

July 28, 2021 at 9:51 am

Dessert Before Lunch?

with one comment

Turkey Tracks: July 25, 2021

Dessert Before Lunch?

You betcha—when the raspberries are ripe.

I can’t pass them without stopping to eat some—and most of the time, I eat all the ripe ones on the spot.

It’s what raspberries and summer are for, right?

In any case, my raspberry bushes are just in their first year, so production is not overwhelming yet. The ripe berries each day just fit into my palm. For the most part…LOL.

Yesterday, in the midst of mass production of the scrappy centers for the “Funky” wedding ring quilt—I needed 40 more—I paused to play with some of the scraps.

And I can say this improv session was fun. And took a fairly long time as this kind of sewing is intense.

This block trimmed to 12 inches, and I can see that it needs to be much bigger in order to work in the strips with short pieces. And it needs to have funky sewn strips, not these nice neat ones.

I’m going to draw a pattern on freezer paper to use for trimming as my triangle rulers aren’t big enough. I can use my big squares to get the pattern right I think. The blog needs to be 16 to 20 inches big to allow for funky strips and additions of the little stripe strip in various places.

I’ll take this prototype apart and make the pieces bigger.

My inspiration is a quilt Maria Shell made

So, here goes another project—but I’ll put it on hold for now and get back to the “Funky” wedding ring parts that need to have their triangle pieces installed.

Written by louisaenright

July 25, 2021 at 12:43 pm

I Never Get Tired…

leave a comment »

Turkey Tracks: July 24, 2021

I Never Get Tired…

…of watching AC doggie in the woods and water.

This swell in the land is boggy and filled with “things that jump away,” like small frogs.

That tail goes a mile a minute when he’s hunting.

The fox-like springing up and pouncing with front feet is his modus opperendi when he hunts in tall grass. This time out I missed the first line of jumps, but they were at least 4 feet off the ground.

These degraded mushrooms were just out in the middle of the field. They could be the poisonous Jack-O-Lantern, but the one I picked smelled really sweet.

I want to go sew some now that I’ve worn down AC’s super energy, so I’m not going to look through my books right now to see what other possibilities I can find. The dark centers are almost a deep purple. Nature is a really good color artist.

Written by louisaenright

July 24, 2021 at 7:39 am