Saturday, May 26, 2012


I got up a 7am today and did some yard work. I've been a terrible home owner when it comes to the yard and let the tree seeds take root in the garden and become "tree suckers" - those weed-like trees that grow where you don't want them to. Anyway, I spent an hour pruning and sawing away to get rid of several of these trees. Good thing I got up earily cause the weather is changing.

Now it's almost 10am and the sky is dark - very dark. There's rumbling noises going on that aren't coming from my stomach (haven't had breakfast yet). But this blackout of the sky is not the blackout I'm talking about.The blackout that's happening around here is in the form of craft pictures.

My cousin's daughter (Layla's Mom) is expecting another wee one this fall We also have Layla's birthday coming up and, of course, there's always Christmas to think about.. This means things are happening around my house in the form of fiber crafts that just can't be posted on the blog. Layla's Mom and Grandma and Mom's cousin from the other side of the family check this blog out occasionally and - well - they aren't going to get any free pics of what's coming off my needles (knitting and sewing).

I'll be working on other things but this week, no pics. But, I'll leave you with a mental picture of something have invaded my brain during my shower yesterday. There's no explaining where this came from but - don't judge me too harshly.

For some reason I got a picture in my head of a line up of pigeons in grass skirts with little leis around their neck doing a hula. Quite a lovely dance line! Then over in the corner of this festival was a worm on a spit with a little tiny apple in its mouth. Don't you sometimes wonder where the line between being creative and being psychotic is?!

Monday, May 14, 2012

Shepherd's Harvest Festival 2012

This weekend I headed over to the Shepherd's Harvest Festival at the Washington County Fairgrounds to wander around yarn and fiber critters.  Saturday was a beautiful day and everyone there seemed to be having a great time.

The Walleye chunks seemed to be very popular with long lines to get them.

Where ever there's bunnies - there's kids

And these bunnies had lots of good, soft fiber!

Lots of fiber means someone has to be around to shear the critters. This sheep got her "shave and a haircut" in no time

Llama Magic happens at the same time as Shepherd's Harvest each year

Some of the llamas appeared to need extra iron in their diet

Some llamas had "unique" hair styles

Other llamas just seemed to be happy to hang out together

Then there was this poor guy - I think it wasn't his best day

Some sheep just don't know they aren't supposed to be lapdogs. This one was bottle raised and never learned to be a sheep. She plays with the dogs at home

On the way home I had to stop for a moment to enjoy the view of the Mississippi River. What a beautiful day!

The one problem with the day was I forgot to bring my camera so I had to take all the pictures with my iphone. The pictures are definitely better than my old phone but not the quality of my camera. But - better this than nothing.

Closer to home, the work on the old Brookdale shopping area continues. Denise in China used to live around here so these pictures are for her.

Again - the iphone camera so a bit grainy. First up, looking toward the old Donaldson's area from the south west. The whole Brookdale area was cleared except the Sears building. The construction in the background is a new Walmart going up.

Here's the Walmart building from the Sears parking lot.

Another view from the same spot.

Now, its time to enjoy a week off. When I stay home I don't call it a staycation, I like to think of it as practice retirement. I've got yard work, house projects and more and that is NOT vacation. But there will be plenty of time for knitting and quilting and I hope to get the Shoo-fly quilt sandwiches together before the week is up.

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Nice surprise to end the week

Last weekend at the Quilt Shop Hop I was incredibly lucky. At each shop everyone had a chance to win one of the many door prizes - patterns, material, etc. I ended up winning something at 5 of the 9 shops. Then Thursday I got a phone call. Seems my luck continues. Each shop had a main prize and then there were the 1st prizes (sewing machine, etc.) Turns out I won one of the shop prizes.

Saturday I went over to Treadle Yard Goods to pick up my prize. When I got there I received a tote bag filled with goodies.

The tote bag/messenger bag is vinyl with pockets and was so full it couldn't be latched. (Sorry the pictures aren't that great, my camera is hiding and I had to use my iphone.)

Inside was a ton of material, decal for the car, several little storage containers and a travel iron.

The material ended up being a lot - seriously, a lot. There's 12 yards of material!
2.5 yds of the brown/blue materials (1/2 yd of each) and 1.5 yds of the lime green prints

Then there was 7 yds of a beautiful paisley. Enough for a main color of a quilt front and the backing.

As if that wasn't enough, there's 1 yd of 8 1/8 yd pieces of homespun in natural shades. They came with a little charm attached to them.

Finally, the travel iron. I did a little search on the net on these and I'm very impressed with the reviews of it. This will be a wonderful tool and something I've been looking into getting so - great timing!

What a wonderful surprise to a very hectic week. All I can say is THANKS! Treadle Yard Goods. You made my day - make that, made my week!

Sunday, May 6, 2012

Another fiber weekend

This spring is ridiculous with all the fiber things going on. A few weekends ago was the Yarn Shop Hop - last weekend was Yarnover (MN Knitter's Guild event) - this weekend Twin Cities Quilt Shop Hop - next weekend Shepherd's Harvest Sheep and Wool Festival. Then this rolls on into the events for the summer including MN Quilter's Guild Show (this year in Rochester). It's crazy! But a good crazy.

So this weekend as I said was the Quilt Shop Hop. 9 stores around the Twin Cities put on a wonderful hop. Each shop had a quilt block and their own version of putting the 9 blocks together. There was also a treasure hunt. The name of the shop's block was a clue to what treasure to find in the store. At the end of the hop if you found all the treasures you were entered into a drawing for a prize. You also got your card stamped at each shop and if you were at all shops, that card was entered into a drawing for some pretty big prizes. Then, as if that was not enough, when you got your card stamped you had a chance to win a door prize. Prizes have not been drawn yet but I was pretty lucky with the door prizes.

At the end of the day (actually Friday night and Saturday) I bought some good stuff and won some good prizes.

Here's the pile of goodies I came home with. I decided not to buy just because "it" was cute or cool. I only bought what I could use right away (mostly). The pile of goodies on the lower left of the picture - that's all the door prizes I won! I know - that's a lot of draw prizes.

First up - a couple patterns. I'm embarrassed to say I can't remember which shop I got every prize at but the one's I remember - Santa pattern was from Fabric Town. The Spin Off pattern was from Blue Bamboo.

Then there was a fat quarter from Bear Patch Quilting. They gave everyone that came a free fat quarter. Bundle of fabric and pattern from Glad Creations. Quilt notecards from Treadle Yard Goods (I think), and the little packet to make a hexagon flower was also from Blue Bamboo.

Then there's the stuff I bought. I got some 505 spray. It's a temporary adhesive which I hear is great for putting your quilt together. Spray the back, place the batting on it. spray the batting, place the front of it. No need for all the pinning. I'll be giving this a try on the Shoo-fly quilt. The batting in the background is for that quilt also. Then there's the new quilt pounce. This little guy is great. You mark the quilt top and after you quilt the top this pounce chalk irons off. Finally, a pattern and kit. It' a long skinny snowman. I have a narrow wall at the entrance of the house that will look wonderful with a snowman to greet visitors this Christmas time. If this fits the spot as well as I hope, I'll be looking to get some of the other kits in the series for different seasons.

I got some fabric. On the left is enough to finish the back of the Shoo-fly quilt. Mlie P's came through again with just the right fabric for the quilt. On the right was - well - it was pretty and a really good price. Blue Bamboo is a shop I would never have gone to if it were not for the hop. It's fairly close to home but in an industrial park and I thought it was just mail order. When I walked in the door I was pleasantly surprised. They specialize in Asian fabrics and have a beautiful shop. The fabric on the right side of the picture was all half price and I'm thinking will become a knitting project bag.

Then there was the kitty Christmas fabric. The fat quarter was only $1.50 so how could I say no. They're just SO cute!

Finally, I added to my magazine collection. Both of them have some great quilts and inspiration for future projects.

This post has gotten long so I'll save my thoughts about all the other shops until next post. Each shop has a distinct personality and the shop hop gave me a chance to meet each of them. Until next post - I have some quilting to do.