Sunday, August 30, 2015

Gone Quilting

Friday the 14th David and I took off for our favorite catfish and fixin’s. It just happens to be 56 miles away but it’s all good. $10 for all you can eat and tea to drink plus the good company of our friends Larry and Silvia.  After dinner we all headed to Buffalo Creek Winery outside Bellville to listen to one of our favorite Texas Music artist Max Stallings and his wife Heather who plays a mean fiddle. David’s boss and wife also joined us for the show. The venue is open and we sat outside. It started off a little warm but cooled off after the sun went down just enough to make it bearable.
David got up early Saturday morning the 15th and headed to the farm to do some work. He has already made arrangements with Pamela to stay at her place that night. He decided sleeping outside even at night was a little too warm to be acceptable for sleeping. Smart man! After working in the sun and heat he needs at least to be comfortable and get a good night sleep. I stayed home to vacuum the house and pack for my quilt retreat. This retreat was the 5th one I’ve organized and I’m not sure how organized I was this time but we had fun.
Sunday the 16th… Yahoo it’s retreat time. Got my car loaded and I’m off to meet my Quilting friends.
We can’t check in to the retreat until 5pm so we meet at Las Fuentes Mexican restaurant for margarita’s and an early dinner. This was the first of the group to arrive for early dinner. The rest will meet us at the retreat later.


What better way to start our week long retreat of fun, laughter, lots of creativity, more laughter and maybe an adult beverage or two and field trips. 





Oh I should mention awesome food. For breakfast, brunch or lunch we are on our own. We got a little more organized and had a schedule of who was gonna provide food on those days plus there’s always snacks if you can’t wait.  






Margie of RR Retreats by Margie cooks dinner for us every night and it is always yummy. 




And she always provides a perfect ending with a yummy dessert. is an awesome place. 
Are you drooling yet?  I could use some of this refreshing dessert right now.




If you need a break you can walk outside on the porch take a seat and relax while enjoying
 the view of the country side and the sunsets are pretty awesome too.  
My picture doesn't even begin to capture the beauty of the sunset over the country side.

Oh and did I mention we took a field trip. Well maybe 2. Yep we took not one but 2 field trips. Both of them going to Gerlines Quilt Shop in Giddings. She's going out of business. She's ready to slow down and only quilt. She's keeping that part of the business going. Hey if you have the time you need to go. Her sale is good thru September 30th. 50% off fabric. Her cost! She has some great fabric. 
 Quilt retreat #1 to Gerline's in Giddings.  That's Gerline cutting Megan's fabric. She's starting her stash. We went back for 2nd trip to Gerlines. We just couldn't pass up the great bargins.

Here’s a few pictures from retreat but if you want to see all you can click Here  

 You might look close at this Sunbonnet Sue Quilt. One the Girls couldn't resist it. At a glance it's really cute but can you quilter's catch what's wrong with this quilt.

It took me a minute and then it was so obvious.......

Figured it out yet?
..........................................................
Look at her arms, the hat and dress..................................
The apron should open to the back.. her arms are facing the back and her bonnet is on backwards.  
Below is what the block should look like when done correctly.

Cindy couldn't pass on the quilt for a conversational piece.
A finish for Donna Lynn ..... Granny Squares I think it's called.  Too cute









Our newest retreater Kathy is left with one block. With the roll of the dice she gets to keep it.  We toss 3 dice.
R  -   L  -  C    Right  Left  Center. We all start with 3 Fat quarters and the last one standing wins the bowl with all the Fat quarters.
Our theme was Christmas. 
This is a fun game. It keeps us laughing trying to remember the rules. How many dice to roll who gets to roll or who doesn't and just when you think you're out of the game the person next to you passes you a Fat Quarter.
And the winner is Sandy for the 2nd retreat in a row. Lucky girl.
 Our new greeter. Mr Wiggles only Mr Wiggles is a girl. She belongs to the lady that lives next door of the retreat. Mr Wiggles was very loving.
 Here's Megan our youngest quilter. She finished this cute piece and started another.

And ready to start quilt top #2


I don't remember who actually snapped this picture. I was sewing the binding on Pamela's quilt then Judy, Ellen and Kathy circled up for the photo

 
This is the quilted border that I added to the quilt that was already quilted. Came out pretty good thank good. At least that's what all the girls tell told me. 




And here's the quilting by Donna's Lavender Nest on the whole body of the quilt.
Here's the whole quilt.  All complete.
Meet the Material Girls

 Ellen jumped out and had me stand in and she took a picture so I could be included.

Judy taught the girls how to make Wine glass slippers. Something I need to finish and mail to a friend of mine. I owe her a something homemade and crafty

 Sandy on her way to finishing another quilt.









Pat left me the rest of her bottle of wine when she left Thursday at lunch time.
I didn't want to disappoint her and not drink it. Our last night. bummer but a nice ending.
No one got sick and no one cut off any body parts.






This is just a piece of the whole fabric for a baby quilt for my expecting Niece and Nephew in Missouri.  I had texted her and asked for her colors which this fabric had but it also had orange and that wasn't in the list but she texted back that she loved it.

I hope she still loves it when she see the completed quilt. ;o)

I can't thank all the girls who went on retreat enough. For their support, contributions of food, door prizes, talent and most of all friendship and laughter. And Thanks to Margie for a great place to have our retreat, her great cooking, her friendship and great talent and least I not forget Jim her side kick and soul mate. It was great getting to know him this retreat. He added the spice at dinner time. LOL. Awesome guy. Since his retirement from Mustang, Margie has had him hard at work on the retreat. See y'all again in 2016.


I can’t say I knocked much off my to do list since my daughter keeps adding things too it. But I did finish everything for her bedroom. Quilt, Dust Ruffle, Shams and Deco Pillows all done.
I left the retreat and headed to Pamela's. I had the bed all made by the time Pamela came home.
 I think she was pleasantly surprised.
Her daddy came up the next day with Lilley to help hang some final pictures. 







I was happy to see my Lilley girl
and she rode home that Sunday the 23rd with her mommy.




Since being home I have got 2 more quilts cut out and a ¼ of two more. I don’t have much time to cross some older projects off my list so I must get busy. I'll share my list next time

Until next post The love of quilting is our common bond


Thursday, August 13, 2015

Mom's Birthday

David left last Friday afternoon to head up to the farm to mow, hang cabinets, work on marking all the sprinkler heads/valves, run a line for the city water to the barn and maybe try to water. Some of that was easier to type than it was done. He did mow a path down to the pond and around but spent most of his day marking the sprinkler and valves so we wouldn't run over them when we mowed.  He got the cabinet hung in the barn he bought but when he went to put the connection on the city water valve connection he didn't have the right supplies. Great. Shopping field trip. With all the rain we had in May and June we he only made one trip to the farm during that time. He was shocked on Friday at how brown everything was. It's been so HOT in July that the crepe myrtles at the front entrance looked fried as did some of the other plants. WOW. That's not good.
David toughed it out Friday night by staying in the barn on a cot with a fan blowing on him. We convinced him to come to Pamela's house Saturday night.
I went to Pamela's on Friday with Lilley and stayed the night. I had no desire to sleep with nature in the heat at the farm. Yes I'm a whimp and I admit it.


Saturday was my Mom's 80th birthday. A birthday get together that almost didn't happen but finally got the details worked out. Joe and Mom came to Pamela's new house and showed up 30 minutes early. Pamela gave them the grand tour and then we were off to Lunch. We had lunch at Fish Daddy's there in College Station. This picture looked better on my phone but the sun was so bright coming through those windows it kinda messed with quality
Yum.
 After lunch Pamela and I took Mom and Joe to the farm for the first time. . A day of firsts.
We celebrated Mom's birthday and a late father's day for Joe.
It was a great day.  Joe texted me again later to say Thanks for the great day
The pond was really low and the cattails keep growing and so does this viney stuff into the pond. In fact it has separated a section of the pond from the rest.  There's  big catfish on both sides of the viney stuff. And some perch too. I want to say we counted 10 on the one side and 7 catfish on the other side.
It was way to Hot that day..but Mom enjoyed the feeding of the catfish.
These pictures were taken by Pamela since I left my camera at her house.
And you can see how tall every thing is since we haven't been up there much. It was getting late so I figured we better head back to Pamela's house for cake and ice cream before Mom and Joe needed to head back to Montgomery while poor David stayed at the farm to continue working on things. He had figured out how to get the irrigation to have pressure and work of which he found many of them leaking. We must have hit some of them already when mowing prior.
David did make me a make shift potty for up there until we find a cabin or trailer. I share a picture next time. He built a nice box, cut a hole and put a toilet seat on it and a bucket inside. Alright so now I don't have to drive 5 miles down the road. YAY

I can't wait until we can live there full time.

David showed up at Pamela's house at 10pm Saturday and got a goods night sleep. He got up Sunday and headed back to the farm. He decided to stay there until Monday but I had to go home Sunday evening and so I could go to work on Monday.

So ends the weekend.

Until next post.....Live every day as if it were your last, because one of these days, you’ll be right… unknown







Tuesday, August 4, 2015

Life Up Down and everything in between

I don’t tend to use my blog to whine and complain because what fun is that to read right? So let me say though this life is not always fun or adventurous. Sometimes it’s like a storm at sea or a major roller coaster. And that is what the last almost 30 days have been like with happiness thrown in and about. I try not to let it get me down but my daughter told me to to snap out of it and she’s right but sometimes I just can’t help it. I’m not in control of my surroundings and it affects me then I choose the happiness. Okay I’m good now. Awwwww breathe…………………………….
Now on to the better stuff.
This past Thursday I went to my book club meeting. It had been my turn to choose a book and location for the meeting. It’s always nice to get together with this group. Even if I feel bad they make me smile. It’s crazy to think that most of us have been together for 18  ½ years. Friends that read together stay together. Well this group has. There’s 19 members and 12 of us were the charter members. 
And no we don’t all show up to every meeting.  I think I have missed 3 meetings in these 18 ½ years. Not a bad record at all. For this meeting only 5 of us were present.


Anyway I chose the book The Captain’s Wife by Douglas Kelley and we met at the Redfish Grill. 
The book starts off a little slow but then the action kicks in. The book is based on a true story about Mary Pattern. At the age of 19 she takes over the navigation and command of the clipper ship Neptune's Car when her husband the Captain falls ill. If you click on the book title you can read my review.
Besides reading for my book club I was asked by a friend of mine who’s an author to join a street team to read series of 5 books and review them to get the word out. I think most of the team has already finish all 5 books but I’m a straggler and I’m only on book 4 of the Linger Series by Edward Fallon. I have enjoyed the first 3 that I've read so far. Book 4 was in truth written by my friend William Graham. The books were publish under one pseudonym You can find them on Amazon now. If you click Here it will take you to amazon and the Linger series. The books are murder mystery/paranormal to thriller. Sometimes they’d start off a little slow and then boom things start happening and I didn’t want to put the books down.

Last Friday marked the 1 year anniversary of my step-Mothers unexpected sudden death.  On that same day our Dad was declared cancer free (Remission) I still can’t believe she’s gone. My sister(s) set up a scholarship in her name and issued the first one this past spring. Carolyn was quite a woman. She supported the community and education thru various donations or volunteer work that none of us were aware of until going through her papers. She owned an abstract company and at some point in time she probably touch every piece of property via paperwork in the Grundy county area in Missouri. She is dearly missed by all her family. And a little over a year our Dad remains in good health and free of cancer. He did recently have a maintenance shot of chemo but he's doing very well. He's even amazed the doctors and I personally am glad for that.

Yesterday my neighbor came down to borrow a dog crate for her grand-dog that’s coming to visit for the next several weeks. We were talking so I walked her out the door and was walking down the road toward her house when we both stopped and looked at this dark line in the road. It was just about dusk and I'd had full glass of wine. I kept thinking that’s weird and took a couple more steps closer, Deborah didn’t move, and it was about this time the head of that black line in the road rose up. I did a quick back step as did Deborah and the whole time we were yelling for David who was in the garage with the music going. I never took my eyes off the snake. He was moving slow and I wanted David to hurry before he slithered into our front yard.
David arrived with a hoe like tool just as the snake slide into the grass but David was faster and got it. Sorry if you’re a snake advocate but the only good snake I know is a dead one. This one was about 3foot long and about as big around as broom stick handle and…… in the picture it is  now a headless copperhead. Yep a copperhead. He's not a good snake at all. That was my first snake up close ever and the first I’ve seen in our neighborhood since we moved in 4 years ago. It can be the last and I’d be just fine with that. 
I’m just about done adding the extra border and the quilting of said border for Pamela’s guest room quilt.  Too many things have gotten in the way and the fix hasn’t been real easy for me.  I pray I never again make this mistake. I still can’t figure out how I didn’t make it long and wide enough for the queen bed. See why I tend to hesitate when I say I try to be a quilter. I mean I even laid the damn thing across her bed that took with her to the house. Oh well about 70 more inches and quilting will be done and then all I have to do is trim and square up everything and bind it. I hope I can finish it this week and take it to her this Friday. I may take my sewing machine so I can hem the bedskirt I made and make her pillow shams.  Her quilt, my screw up is jamming up my Project list and crossing off finished projects. And top off the fact that working 10 hour days kinda messes with your energy to do things after work. Oh Pamela has added 3 more baby quilts to UFO list. Yikes.  Hopefully I can cross a few off the UFO list in a couple of weeks when I go on my quilt retreat. This will be the 5th one I've organized. The hardest part of the organization is trying to figure out what to take and work on.

Oh well I guess I better get busy on this quilt if I even hope to have it ready this weekend.

Until Next Blog.....Quilting Fills My Days..My closets, My trunk and My cabinets.!



Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Quick Wimberly Trip

David and I had a weekend planned to go to the Farm, stay at Pamela's house, go to Waco, visit Magnoila market, Hope to see Chip and Joanna Gaines at the Market from the Fixer Upper show, go back to the farm until it was time to head home but one of David's high school buddies shot out an email asking if anyone in the Bell Gang was interested in coming to their Wimberly place.  
Warning blog heavily loaded with photos.



So our plans changed. And we were off to Wimberly on Friday Morning. They live high on a hill with loads of beautiful views.




Billy & Cheryl opened their home and offered up some good ole hospitality.

Love their beautiful home and bright outdoor furniture.




Meet Billy Senior and Billy Junior. hehehe
They only had Billy Senior when we were here last hear.

We ate at some new places while visiting. For dinner Friday night we headed to a Pizza place that Billy and Cheryl raved about only to find that they had over a 2 hour wait time. So we ended up at Trudy's in Austin but just outside Dripping Springs.

Saturday we hung out and enjoyed their balcony and nature before heading into Wimberly and River Road and then to lunch

We were heading to car when Billy hollered for me to come see the Banana Spider. Okay I'm not into spiders but I was curious.

Look at this spider. It's huge and scary.

This thing was interesting but scary as heck. He moved once real quick and so did I. The above picture more accurately shows the size.
Supposedly they are mildly poisonous unless you have an allergic reaction to the venom but I didn't care to find out either way..

Aren't you glad I shared this with you.



After my fascination with the spider we headed into Wimberly. Billy drove us down River Road that runs beside Cypress Creek where homes, cabins and families were washed away during the recent continuous rains in June. Nothing could prepare you for the scene we saw. Now's when I wish I was a much better photographer. 
My photos don't even begin to share the devastation. River Road is a narrow road and no where to pull over so I shot some pictures out the car window as we drove down the road.






This use to be someone's home. 

100 year old Trees, Rocks and roots were just moved around like they weighed nothing.



Tree's were bent and twist 

and 

stripped clean of their bark. 
Most likely without the bark the trees will die.


Caught some people relaxing in the cool refreshing water. It did look really inviting. It was HOT Saturday. Hard to imagine that this same water in Cypress Creek in Wimberly raging and destroying everything in it's path.


You can hardly see the stairs just hanging there off the bluff on the right of the picture above. That last step would be a doosey. The river was something like 40 feet out of it's banks.  It's hard to image the water being that far out of it's banks and that high.


High above the river not even this house escaped damage. 

It's all boarded up.


Seeing all of the devastation put a lump in my throat. 
This was a house and this is all that's left.  Driving this path made me choke up. I just can't image the fear and the loss of life, homes and belongings. It tears at your heart.

We left here and headed to lunch at Salt Lic in Driftwood. Soooo Good! After that we all probably needed a nap but we headed to Wildseed Farms then Fredericksburg for some shopping.


No turquoise this time Pam Jackson but we did have a Jalapeno Margarita at Hondo's.



Sunday we got up hung out again on their awesome balcony. I did some bird watching. They were very distracting. LOL Kinda like the dog in "UP"...(squirrel) BIRD.  


Can you find them in my not so great photos. 





I need a bigger lens. These little guys were very skittish. 
They were so cute.


Cheryl and I were wanting a picture of this truck with the longhorns in front of it. We passed them going into Fredericksburg Saturday thinking we'd get a chance to snap a picture later but the Longhorns didn't cooperate. They were gone I took this picture in 2013 and it now hangs in my house. Maybe next trip I'll catch those longhorns out by the truck.

Did you do anything for Heather Von St James All or Nothing event on July 26. She's trying raise awareness for  Mesothelioma an asbestos disease  She is a 10 year survivor.

I can't say I did anything totally crazy but David and I did relax all weekend and didn't leave the Hill Country until 3:30 Sunday. Normally we get up have breakfast and we hit the road for home by 12. We were in no hurry this time.  No rushing around. We got up Sunday as I said earlier and I did a little bird watching, visiting with Billy and Cheryl then headed into to town for brunch. We weren't disappointed. We ate at the Wimberly Cafe known for their awesome breakfast. Yum Yum
After brunch/breakfast we did some shopping. Hope y'all did something fantastic.

I'm sure you're tired now after reading all this so......
Until next blog.......The most beautiful discovery true friends make is that they can grow separately without growing apart. ~Elisabeth Foley