Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Highland Games

I want to share photos from last weekend's Highland Games in Kalamazoo, MI. I want to highlight each event in the upcoming posts. Highland Games are events of strength, skill and endurance. You must wear a kilt to participate.

These photos are of the first two events. The top photo is the Breamar stone. It is like a modern shot but however, your feet must stay still. The athlete has three throws and the best of the three is used to in the competition.

The second event is the Open Stone. The athlete may move feet, shuffle or spin. They have to stay behind the wooden board or "trig." Same as before, three throws and the best of three is used.

This is a full day. There are a total of 9 events in a competition that does a full games. To "count" in scoring, a games has to do a minimum of 5 events. This games did all 9.

Some festivals have dancing, music, vendors, Celtic heritage living history actors, booths and clan tents. I have fun at all of the festivals and I have had a great summer going to these. We have one more games in October and our season will be finished but in warmer climates it can go all year!!

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Something new beginning September

I have been thinking about how to give my blog more structure over this summer. I have been blogging for several years and I need to make some changes. I am going to continue to talk about every day happenings, an occasional rant and photos of life. I am going to have a few themes for a few days of the week.

Monday-Design Wall Monday as hosted by Patchwork Times to showcase quilt projects, ideas and design
Tuesday-Tiny Tuesday's a day posting my mini quilt blocks that are 6 inches or smaller
Wednesday-Happiness Project Updates
Thursday-Simple Living Updates including organization, downsizing, and re- purposing
Friday, Saturday and Sunday -updates on family and random thoughts

Of course there may be other updates in between the daily themes that will include Highland Games, wrestling, music, Renfest and other happenings. Starting tomorrow I am sharing pictures and information regarding the Highland Games that my husband has been participating in.

Monday, August 29, 2011

Design Wall Monday

Here are my little 6" Civil War Diary quilt blocks. Getting to the end of this , have about 15 left to go!

Sneak preview of a overall freehand swirl on a customer quilt. I deleted the overall picture but I think My mom has some.... technical difficulties.

Tomorrow I will show highlights of highland games and the RenFest I attended this weekend. Come back to hear all about it!

Monday, August 22, 2011

Design Wall Monday

I have the technology to do my Civil War Diary Quilt blocks again!! Love the little blocks so much and I will finish the block assembly very soon as I have only 17 more to go. I have the book that shows a straight line assembly but I believe I will deviate from that plan and go with an on point setting.

The tutorial for my Little Rails quilt completed with the Happy campers charm pack and honey bun is here .

I plan to do the Farmers wife quilt after Labor Day. Any one else want to join me in an informal FW quilt along?

Little rails- a tutorial

Fabric requirement: One honey bun and one charm pack . Pictured is "Happy Campers."
First sew three strips from the honey bun together in a dark/light/dark manner.
Trim to 3 1/2 inches square.
Then begin to assemble into a 9 patch , three patches by three patches.
One of the patches is to be a square from the charm pack. Cut to 3 1/2 inches and save the 1 1/2 inch strip! No waste here!
Assembly is in a manner that the rails are vertical, then horizontal then verical in row one.
Just the opposite in each subsequent row.

Once all of strips are used in your block assembly, use the left over strips to assemble little rail patch as above. Trim to 3 1/2 inches.

Once you reach this point, you need to begin to cut up the charm pack squares. First cut a 1 1/2 inch strip off the full length.

Then rotate the block 90 degress as above and cut into three 1 and 1/2 inch strips as above, this yeilds the most strips per charm square. Continue to assemble 9 patch blocks with one 3 1/2 inch square cut from a charm square and in a random manner rotate which square will be the charm square for maximum effect! Total of 24 blocks are to be assembled.

Now assemble into rows. 4 squares by 6 squares. There are only 4 charm squares and a partial strip left from the honey bun to go into the fabric stash.

Any questions, please email me.

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Civil War Diary Quilt Block

I have Electric Quilt program up and running again in a more updated computer. I haven't worked on the Civil War Diary Quilt in a few months. This is the second block of row 10. I have only 18 blocks to go. This quilt has a total of 121. I have decided that this quilt is going to be set on point unlike the quilt in the book so I believe that I will have a couple of extra blocks.

I am already planning my next small block quilt The Farmers Wife.

I plan to start in September, anyone else want to join me?

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Getting out the special soaps!

Why am I getting the special soaps out, just because. For me!
I love soaps, I bought this orange scented soap at the local festival this summer. Hmm, very nice hand made soap.

I received this soap as a gift from my DD. I have used up most of my Bath and Body works stuff and now it is time to indulge in the hand made soaps. Yes, this came from Williamsburg, Virginia. I was looking for this the other day and thought I lost it, I am saving it for a special day. I am going to open this soon and use it. But for now, it is out and lovely to see and smell. Funny how the soaps can make me feel happy.

Monday, August 15, 2011

Happy Campers top finished!

I have finished my little quilt. I love it, it used one charm pack and a honey bun. There are four squares of the
charm pack left. I think it is really eye catching and will look great on the back of my couch! I will get a tutorial written for this.

View of Lighthouse keepers home from top of lighthouse

View of Lake Huron from Top of the Old Lighthouse
We spent a wonderful day around the Alpena area. We stopped and the Old Prisq Ilse lighthouse and climbed to the top. Even with the rain the view is fantastic! This is one of my favorite keepers cabins. It is so rustic. There is another lighthouse that we will get to within a mile of the old lighthouse, the rain became too much Sat.

Today is back to work, back to my eating plan and exercise program. I need to get focused on these things because vacation two weeks ago set me a bit off track and that's OK. The ice cream yesterday was great by the way...and that wasn't on a vacation.

Friday, August 12, 2011


Tiffany glass at art museum

photo of the USS Wisconsin at the Nauticus museum

Ocean at Sand bridge

This week has been long because it is the first week back from vacation. It has been a week of cleaning, exercising and working. I didn't miss these things while on vacation!! The pictures above are more from my vacation.

Happy Campers

I have been working on my Happy Campers quilt. I have most of the blocks pieced. I hope to get a tutorial written up for this pattern over the weekend.

The air is getting cooler here. The garden produced it's first red tomato, beans and some peas. The cukes are little and the zucchinis are growing. We will have a nice harvest this year. With the cooler air, brings the sounds of football practice, the first signs of leaves changing and walking outside on off days from the gym.

Hotel from the beach, I see a quilt in here!

Yeah for Friday!

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Here are a few of the 561 pictures I took while on vacation last week. We visited our daughter and son-in-law. We went to a light house the first day and I climbed up with only minimal problems. The stairs down were a bit creepy but the view was way worth it. Next, we went over the Chesapeake Bay Bridge Tunnel. We saw some cool ships but the best were the dolphins spotting swimming in the water while driving.

We also went to an Aquarium, an art museum, the ocean, beach, waterfront and to the USS Wisconsin and museum. We played board games and ate as a family every night.  Lots of fun. I loved it all. Virginia Beach is a very cool place.

I have EQ up and running on a laptop. Thanks kid! I have been having fun drafting blocks and designing quilts. More to come.