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Turkey Tracks: Sewing/Knitting Projects Update November 2014

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Turkey Tracks:  November 17, 2014

Sewing/Knitting Projects Update November 2014

Late October (that strange blizzard) and early November have brought a fair amount of inclement weather.  It is snowing off and on today, as a matter of fact.

So, I have been snuggling into a whole array of winter projects.

This big quilt is quilted, and the binding is on.  It is just waiting for me to sew down the binding.  It’s 97 inches square, so it will take some nights of hand sewing.

 

 

 

 

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BUT, I’ve been finishing knitting a white linen shawl at night.  There’s a tale here.  I started this shawl on the J&E Riggin in early September.  I had it completely finished but did not like the tension, so I took it apart and went down a needle size.  I’m much happier with it now, and it’s almost done.  Just a few more nights.

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After linen is knitted, one thoroughly wets it, dries it, and irons it.  In the process, the linen turns soft as butter and very shiny.

Our Coastal Quilters and Georges Valley auction took place last weekend–and look what I bid on and won:

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Gail Galloway Nicholson made this quilt, and Joan Herrick quilted it freehand on her long-arm.

Here’s a closeup:

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It gives me such pleasure to have the work of friends and family in my home.  Everytime I walk past one of these pieces I am reminded of the loved ones involved and of all the wonderful energy that they have put into their work.

You can see that this quilt is so, so happy to live on my coral chair!

I am in the process of making other quilts for this downstairs room.  I need quilts that can be loved, used, and washed–in place of the dog-blanket strategies that live in this sitting room/tv room/den space.  So, here’s a quilt top I’ve just finished that’s going to go on the back of the couch–where Rey Rey likes to hang out so she can see the back door comings and goings:

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Fun, huh?  It’s 85 inches square, and I think I’ll just bind it without adding any borders.  I’ll quilt it when I return from Charleston December 2nd.

Here’s the backing–which is especially nostalgic as grandson Kelly Enright picked it out with me this summer.  He’ll get such a kick out of seeing this quilt with it’s lively backing when he next comes to visit.

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This quilt is made with the 2 1/2-inch strips that I cut up from my stash two summers ago.  I had a HUGE bin filled to the top.  Look now:

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OK, I have a few of the darks and mediums out on the cutting board as I’m using them in another quilt top:

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It’s Bonnie Hunter’s Scrappy Trip Around the World version, and I’m having so much fun putting together various sets of 6 strips for each block (at 16 inches).  Here’s two of the blocks I made yesterday:

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I’ve seen so many variants of this quilt now, and I can’t wait to see how mine develops.  I’m sure the blocks will get moved over and over again until I’m happy with the results.

My leader/ender project now is a low-contrast quilt made with a focus fabric and 2 1/2-inch light and dark blue blocks.  I’m mixing the focus fabric into the four-patch/eight-patch blocks.

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Here’s what’s forming on the design wall–in a dark corner of the wall.  I’m playing with creating a center of 8 pieced blocks surrounding one of the focus fabric squares.  I don’t know how this will work out…   I’m just playing.  I may play with some single 4-patch blocks surrounded with sashings of the focus fabric as well.  Or, use another fabric that co-ordinates.  Who knows?  That’s what play is all about…

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I made a big soup yesterday so was able to quilt until I got hungry.  AND, I’ll freeze some of it to have on the night I return.  The meat is from the turkey I roasted earlier in the year–a turkey from last Thanksgiving that came from my neighbors:  Susan McBride and Chris Richmond of Golden Brook Farm.  Sometime last summer I defrosted the turkey, cut it up, and roasted it.  I froze one-half of the turkey breast and am just now using it.

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I used a chicken bone-broth base (of course), the turkey, and what I had on hand:  frozen tomatoes from the summer, onions, carrots, celery, fresh parsley, rutabaga, some brown rice, and the Indian spices (cumin, coriander, a bit of cinnamon, tumeric).  It’s super delicious!!

My fabrics for Bonnie Hunter’s Mystery Quilt 2014–Grand Illusion–are ironed and ready to go!  I’ll get the first clue the day after Thanksgiving, but will not be able to start it until I get home.  But, I’m ready!

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I leave for Charleston, SC, this Thursday, for the Thanksgiving holidays with my family, and, as always, posting to the blog with the ipad is always chancy–but I’ll take lots of pictures and will post when I get home if all else fails!

 

Turkey Tracks: Household Dramas

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Turkey Tracks:  March 30, 2014

Household Dramas

 

SMOKE ALARM

The smoke alarm outside my bedroom went off last night about 3:30 a.m.  LOW BATTERY.  That alarm talks to you in a voice that can raise even a deaf person like me from a dead sleep.  Rey Rey jumped off the very high bed (I hope she used the nearby chair) and followed me through the house-check I made to make sure there wasn’t smoke anywhere, etc.  And to get the ladder downstairs so I could reach the alarm upstairs on the third floor. Rey Rey ducked into her bed downstairs–a laundry basket with soft old blankets under the table in my office–and had to be retrieved when the drama was all solved and the offending alarm removed from the ceiling for the night–which meant another trip up and down three flights of stairs.

It took me forever this morning to figure out how to open the battery door… Went online for the manual to figure it out, but couldn’t find a clue–which means most anyone with any brains should know how to open the darn thing.  Only, I didn’t want to break anything by forcing plastic parts.   The little door pulls and kind of swings out.  The online ad said one could change the batteries without removing the device from the ceiling.  Ha!  I’d like to see someone do that.  And it’s easy enough to unscrew it anyway.

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Now I suppose I should check the other alarms as I suppose they might all have low batteries.   But, that will be a task for another day…

Meanwhile, Rey Rey is still a total wreck–made more so when the new batteries went in and the device “talked” again in the piercing, scary voice.

She retreated to the rug in front of the sink–the next best thing to my lap as it is “my” spot in the kitchen–where she sat shaking with terror and refusing to look at the camera.

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BEAUTIFUL DAFFODILS

See those beautiful daffodils on the kitchen counter?

A wonderful friend brought them to me this week–along with a big bunch on the dining room table.

And I have had swollen lymph nodes under one arm, other swellings, an allergy runny nose in spurts off and on ever since.  It took me a few days to figure it out–but it’s those flowers.

I started washing my hands really good to get rid of whatever pesticides I had gotten on my hands from the flowers–and gathered up those beautiful, gorgeous, sunny flowers and threw them on a snow bank.

And my nose has stopped and the swellings are going away…

But I will miss the daffodils and will be so happy to see my own bloom in the meadow this year.

Again, maybe this is a lesson in “slow” flowers/food and staying in the seasons…

 

CLOGGED DRAINS IN GARAGE

So, today is the day that the documentary TOXIC HOT SEAT is being shown at THE STRAND in Rockland, Maine.  I had a leisurely breakfast, dressed with care (the pretty blue sweater I save for “good”), and went to the garage to leave.  At the last moment, as it was pouring rain, I changed my pretty shoes for sturdy rain shoes.

There was at least four inches of water in the garage.

The drains were plugged.

Water, water everywhere and threatening the bottoms of the refrigerator and the freezer.

I went back to the house, changed into LL Bean tall boots, took off my pretty green scarf (a present from DIL Corinne during her pre-wedding parties) that matched my pretty green raincoat that I treasure but that is at least 15 years old, got a toilet plunger and tried to open the drains.

No luck.

I called my wonderful neighbor Chris Richmond, who came down with adorable and growing-fast son Carleton in about 30 seconds.   What a great feeling that was.

Chris had no luck with the plunger either.

Chris determined that the drains were iced up and tried to find their outside outlet–and set about redirecting water flowing down the hillsides into the drainage ditches along the driveway–which had become plugged with too many leaves.  (Next year I’ll do a better job of blowing leaves out of those drains–and maybe get Tom Jackson to deepen them again.  After ten years, they’ve silted up quite a bit.

Meanwhile, Carleton and I “broomed” water out of the garage doors so that it flowed down the hill.  As I only had one big broom, Carleton worked with a snow shovel while I followed him him with the big broom.  (I will be buying another broom forthwith.)

Chris had brought some de-icer pellets and put those down the drains, but it may take some time for them to “work.”

And I went to Renys and bought one of their last de-icer bags and put more down the drains.  And I will go back in a bit to see if I need to put in more.

Now my mind is busily turning over what kind of treats I might be able to proffer to thank Chris and Carleton!

I am a lucky woman to have such nice neighbors.