Saturday, March 17, 2018

United Kingdom

Last time I posted I said I was going to show you some pictures of word quilts from QuiltCon, but I can't even find those pictures.

So instead you get pictures of my next adventure -- daughter and I went to England and Scotland! It was a whirlwind trip, enough to give us a taste and a yearning to go back and see more. We both came back sick, and my cough is lingering. Never mind that - here are some photos:

Tower of London and Tower Bridge

The Eye, a guy, and Westminster Abbey

Warner Bros. studio tour, "The Making of Harry Potter" - very interesting

Edinburgh, Scotland is a beautiful city!

I found one tiny fabric store in Scotland and bought two small pieces of fabric. I also bought two skeins of yarn. Now I'm staying home for a while and saving up my pennies for my next great adventure.

Wednesday, February 28, 2018


Friends and I attended the QuiltCon 2018 quilt show in Pasadena, California. We had a great time! While I was gone, two snow storms hit Minnesota, dumping 7 inches of snow each time. Poor husband had to shovel without my help. I, meanwhile, was enjoying the beautiful sunshine and flowers of California.

QuiltCon is a show and conference put on by Modern Quilt Guild. The quilts were modern, unique, unusual, and gorgeous. Here are some examples:

Crazy Town Roopetoope by Irene Roderick

Configuration Kasuri with Five Lines by Julie Haddrick

I forgot to record the maker of this one.

Color Explosion by Carolina Oneta [She is from Chile. I sat by her in the shuttle ride back to the airport and enjoyed a nice chat. She is teaching quilting in Chile, trying to spread the love of this art form.]

Time Out by Claudia Shearer

This one looks so much better in person than in a photo. I tried a second shot to show how tiny the pieces are in the center of this quilt. It's hard to portray this one accurately in 2D photos.
Leftovers #7 by Debra Jalbert
It won first place in the Improvisation category.

Reflection by Anne Sullivan
It won 2nd place in the Small Quilt category.

Blue Jean Butterflies by Charlotte Noll with a Judge's Choice ribbon

Happy Dance by Sandra Kaye won Best Machine Quilting

Color Study H1 by Victoria Findlay Wolfe won first place in Modern Traditionalism

Cielo by Kristi Schroeder

Oblique by Diana Vandeyar

Captured Moments by Marianne Haak

Remote Destination by Christine Yi

Up and Down by Claudia Scheja

Sine Me Up by Kent Williams

my screen print from a class I took.. I had a little trouble with smearing, etc., but I like my result

my group of friends - we all travelled to Pasadena from Minnesota - sans the next person (photo below) who decided to break her leg just before we left

friends with whom I rendezvous'd in Pasadena: G (left) from California and T (right) from Texas

Fun trip and now I'm home (in the snow) and inspired to create!
Where did the flowers go?

P.S. There are many, many more quilts, all beautiful, from this show. I just could not photograph them all. I do have a series of Quilts with Words photos that I will post in the future. They're awesome!

Tuesday, February 27, 2018

Book Review: Big Little Lies

Big Little Lies by Liane Moriarty ... I give it 4 out of 5 stars. I enjoyed this book and often laughed out loud, especially in the sections depicting the conversations between the mother and the teenage daughter. The book is mostly about relationships and family/friend dynamics. A murder is hinted at through the whole book and doesn't happen until... well I won't say. Don't you want to read it and find out for yourself?

Wednesday, February 14, 2018

Hands 2 Help Challenge is Back!

It's time once again for the Hands 2 Help challenge. Sign-ups begin on March 11. Click on the H2H button in my sidebar, and it will take you to the explanation of the charity challenge. There are three different charities you can send quilts to. You can choose one, two or all three of them to donate quilts! It's always so much fun to learn about the different charities and to see all the gorgeous quilts that people send in. Quilters are so generous! I love that about us.

One of the charities is taking tops (not finished quilts) and the size must be 50" x 70". Guess what. Just today I finished a top that is exactly that size. So I am already 1/3 of the way completed with this year's challenge. How serendipitous! This is the top I just finished:

Can you help donate a quilt(s) this year? Just follow the link and start sewing!

Sunday, February 11, 2018

Book Review: Beartown

Beartown by Fredrik Backman. This story takes place in a small town surrounded by forest. (The forest plays a role in the book.) The townspeople rally around their local boys' hockey team, in fact almost get their identity and fulfillment vicariously through the team. Two things I didn't like about this book: (1) it was about hockey, which I don't like and (2) it seemed to encompass all the stereotypes I don't like - kind of a 'boys will be boys' mentality surrounding the hockey team.

Friends who have read this book loved it, but I have my reservations. It is not ALL about hockey. The hockey culture is a key player in the story, but after a traumatizing event takes place, other viewpoints emerge. I felt that those other viewpoints slipped in too quietly and even surprisingly when the whole town, at least on the surface, seemed to thoroughly embrace the bad parts of hockey culture. Those other viewpoints were a breath of fresh air, but.. too little too late? I would have liked those voices to speak out louder and much earlier than they did.

I hope that if you read this book you will love it, as my friends have. If you're like me, however, you may not enjoy it as much as you hope. If you read it, please tell me your thoughts.

This is not me. Unfortunately. I am reading indoors under a quilt, surrounded outside by snow and cold.

Friday, February 02, 2018

Tripping Down Memory Lane

The college where husband and I met and from which we graduated is celebrating its 50th year of existence. My future father-in-law was its first business manager. Its first class opened in the fall of 1967. My future mother-in-law was a member of that charter class.

Each year they added one more class. I arrived in the fall of 1970, the first year they had four classes of students on campus. And that spring, in 1971, my future mother-in-law graduated with the charter class. I didn't know her or my hubby at the time, but I played in the band at her graduation ceremony.

Hubby and I started dating in the Fall of 1971, graduated in 1974, married in 1975, and now, suddenly, it's a million years later. How did this happen? Time is a funny thing.

We decided to take a road trip down to our old college and see what it looks like these days, and to peek at an art exhibit which has a piece of mine hanging in it. This exhibit is part of the college's 50th anniversary celebration.. they asked for alumni art and then picked the pieces they wanted. The exhibit changes about every six weeks. (Note: there were no classes in session on the Friday that we visited, so campus was very quiet and very few people show up in these pictures.)
I'm in the car on the way there. The college was built on a flat prairie; you can see the flatness out the car window. We were happy to see that the baby trees, planted while we were there, have grown up and are large and good for shade.

First thing we did was drive around town to see what we remembered. A lot has changed! This is the house my hubby and his family lived in since he was about 12 and while I dated him. It has been remodeled and is much bigger now. (My in-laws moved away long ago.)
Here we are!

The first picture is of my missing dorm. During my first three years on campus I lived in a dorm that was on this spot of ground. It has since been torn down.
The fourth picture, the dark and fuzzy one, is of the dorm I lived in during my senior year. The other pictures are general campus pictures; some scenes are things we had never seen before.

The next day we went back in the daylight. These two campus scenes are what we remember. The school was so new, it had only three main buildings. This courtyard was in the middle, and what we see in the picture is what we mostly remember. The campus is now much bigger. It looks great!

This structure was in the new student center which was finished about a year before we graduated. It had a skylight-type of dome over this structure. You can see it depicted in the next picture. Later the dome was removed, and they built more around and on top of this structure.

Here's the art exhibit I was in. Can you see my name on this sign outside the Whipple Gallery? Prof. Whipple was the Dean of Humanities and Fine Arts while we were there.
Some of the other art work.. the one below is a print of 400 sketches of horses, some very rough, some completed. I took a shot to show a detailed look at the small parts. Hubby is examining the big piece.

Bill Holm and Philip Dacey were two of our professors in English and Literature back in our day. The 2nd shot shows some book covers of books written by Bill Holm.

This is the hallway where my now-husband surprised me and asked me out on a date. I wasn't even aware that he knew who I was at the time! I was on my way to history class and then sat starry-eyed in class the whole hour without hearing a word the professor said. The second picture is the spot where he invited me to our 2nd date. After that, I don't remember any particular spots of importance.

I end with two pictures of the New - a view from the new student center, looking out toward the campus that we remember. And a view from the administration building, with a view of the dorm I lived in during my last year there.

What a fun visit! Old memories flooded back, and we enjoyed seeing all the changes on campus. And I got a new sweatshirt.