Friday, August 27, 2021

Really Random...Friday, 8/27/21

Thursday came and went. So here we are on Friday.

Before I forget, several people were interested in the Urchin bowl made from 3 mm wool felt, but were no-reply commenters. I purchased the pattern from She no longer has the pattern listed but I'm sure if you contact her, you would be able to purchase the pattern. I purchase my felt from selection of colors and great service as well.

This past Monday was a milestone birthday for Mark, the big 7-0. He is a man who wants nothing more than being surrounded by his family--that is the best gift he can receive. He and I drove over to Carmel on Saturday. While we enjoy going to Pismo for the ocean view from our room, Carmel is a charming little town full of art galleries and shops. Months ago when I mentioned to Christa that although he wouldn't want a party, we needed to do something special, she suggested Carmel for the day--it's a part of the coast they don't get to very often. So the troops arrived on Sunday morning and we spent the day together.

We headed over to 17-Mile-Drive, to a spot where Mark and I have had many picnic lunches over the years. Christa and Jill had brought everything needed for a yummy lunch. It was overcast and sweatshirt weather, but not too windy--a perfect afternoon.

Then we headed back to Carmel, hit the toy store and the candy store. 

Mark and I had searched for a place to eat dinner before they all headed back to Fresno. We walked around town Saturday night and stumbled on a new bakery/pizzeria on one of the side streets. There was a room with a large table--perfect for all 12 of us--and the pizzas were delicious and reasonably priced, which is not an easy thing to find in a pricy tourist town like Carmel. 

I think his entry into a new decade began in the best way possible. 
Handmade birthday cards from Gabe and Ella are priceless.

Flowers seen close to our hotel room.

And this cute paintbrush display in one of the art galleries.
I agree--simply brilliant.

We have a new doormat. Sometimes I feel like I should make our regular mailman a quilt for all the bundles of fabric he has delivered...
Something to keep in mind...
I've been doing the Summer Sampler 2021, hosted by Lee Heinrich, Faith Jones and Katie Blakesley. I am all caught up with the weekly blocks--something that has never happened to me in the history of quilt-alongs when I participate. I'm feeling quite proud of myself.

In my quest to find locally made iced lavender oatmilk lattes, Mark was at this cool coffeeshop with our pastor last week, and guess what?! They make what I was looking for. So after Mark and I got our hair cut this morning, he surprised me by taking me there. He even tried some coffee, but nope, he is NOT a coffee lover.
Cool light fixture.
Any of you mothers feel like this?
Mark's brother Pete lives in Driggs, Idaho. Your little town finally makes it to the New York Times, but not for a good reason... Is it smoky where you are?
I'll end with these.

Hope your weekend is a good one.

Thursday, August 12, 2021

Really Random Thursday, 8/12/21

Every new beginning
Comes from some other beginning's end

(Lyrics from "Closing Time" by Semisonic)

As Christa stated, it's been 517 days since normal school.

Along with countless others, today is a new beginning for these four:

Second grade.
Fourth grade.
Eighth grade.
Tenth grade.
Along with this new beginning for them comes a new beginning for Mark and me. For an entire year, we were known as Wienskler Academy, West Campus, as the kids were here all day on Mondays and Thursdays for virtual school. It had its ups and downs. I have already forgotten the "downs," but we had many "ups"--transportation back and forth, lunch around the table two days a week, with much laughter, lots of time for bonding... As grandparents, those times are priceless.

I'll be honest here and say that I'm having a tough time with the transition. I got used to, and looked forward to, having them here twice a week. Now I have to figure out again what to do with those two free days. I was used to being a steady part of their lives. Kids are busy. I feel like I'm mourning the loss of those times together, but I do know that we will make it a priority to schedule individual and group time together. They need to be in school. They need to be with their friends in person, not faces on a screen. We made it through a year unlike any other. I'm so happy they are back in school and I know they are as well.

We did go back-to-school shopping the other day. It was hot but fun, and I think they are mostly outfitted for awhile.

I thoroughly cleaned my sewing room and sold all this fabric. Yay. Now to get back into that room and start messing it up again. :)

I was able to visit my father today. His hair is so long! I've never seen it like this before.
He told me it was because he is now the only person living in skilled nursing so they don't have anyone to cut hair. *sigh* Memory is a hard thing to lose...

And that's it for this week. Stay cool.

Thursday, August 5, 2021

Really Random Thursday, 8/5/21

 Welcome to August. 

I want to begin by sharing a photo of my brother-in-law, Leon, and niece, Christina, taken in mid-July. Leon normally picks me up from the airport when I fly into Minneapolis for the quilt retreat. I spend the night at his house, and he drives me to Amanda Jean's house the next morning. It didn't work out for me to stay with him this year, but he and Christina came to my hotel with Chinese take-out. The weather was perfect--no bugs or humidity--so we sat outside and ate our dinner together. It was a lovely evening, and I forgot to post this picture with the quilt retreat post.

Continuing on with the summer, we go back in time to July. As soon as I returned home from Minnesota/Wisconsin, we had the grandkids at our house for five days, 8:30 to about 5:30, or whenever Aaron got off work, because Christa was in Kansas City doing a residency as part of her master's program.

It has continued to be hot here. From 9:30 to 1:30, Ella and Gabe were at a summer program, Young Engineers for Ella and Robotics for Gabe. Charlotte and I went to Starbucks a couple of times. We always put the order in her name just so we can see how the barista decides to spell it. We have quite a collection of variations.

Traditionally this has been the week for Wiens Art Camp, but since Ella and Gabe were gone a large part of the day, we just did a few projects as they felt like it.

Charlotte experimented with resin and made some really cute thumb tacks that look like popsicles.

She also practiced her skill as a crepe maker.

Gabe and Ella worked with clay--both polymer and the softer Model Magic.

We ended the week with dollar Slushies from 7-11.

On Saturday morning, Mark and I left for a road trip to Oregon. Our first stop was in Salem, to deliver the Tattoo quilt (which will get its own separate post) to our niece, Rose. She works at a great coffee shop called the Governor's  Cup (very near the capitol building). 

We spent some time catching up. And she got me hooked on a new drink to me, an iced lavender oatmilk latte. Yum.

The next day, we had a walking tour of Willamette University. Rose graduated from Willamette last year and her partner, CJ, currently attends.

Beautiful flowers.

Lunch at Bo and Vine was great.

Our time together was short but so good.

The next morning we left for Portland, where we stayed with like-a-granddaughter, Stacie. So I'll just admit right here that I fell in love with her house, her neighborhood, and of course I have always loved Portland, so I just didn't want to leave. She lives in what was her grandparents' house. Her grandfather now lives with her parents, and she is redoing the house bit by bit. That girl is a DIY ninja. 

We stayed in this room.

On the agenda first of all was a project that she and Mark worked on together--they have worked on projects jointly before and he loves working with her.

Her idea was to build a loft in a spare bedroom closet, in anticipation of Aaron, Christa and the kids visiting the following week.

It took a couple of trips to Home Depot, but they made good progress.

We had pizza for dinner on 23rd Avenue, a popular hangout spot in Portland. And then walked down the street to Salt and Straw for ice cream.

On the way home we stopped at Pittock Mansion for a gorgeous view of the city.

On Wednesday, Stacie was working so we had the day to ourselves. We took the light rail downtown to find Caleb's memorial brick. (Caleb was our first grandchild, born in Portland, who passed away after three days.) 

We had a great lunch at Jake's Famous Crawfish.

We went to Skyline Burgers and then watched the Olympics in the patio, obviously in style.

We hated saying goodbye.

And a little side note: Aaron, Christa and the kids are all at Stacie's this week, which was the reason to push to get the loft completed. Stacie finished it all after we left. Isn't it amazing?!

I'm pretty sure it's a big hit...

For our last night, we stayed at the Railroad Park Resort in  Dunsmuir, California, home to 23 cabooses and railroad cars. When Mark made the reservation a few weeks back, he scored the very last available car, Caboose 26.

It was lovely inside, all knotty pine.

The next morning, the view from the bed was so pretty.

We arrived home Friday afternoon.

On Saturday, we kept the grandkids overnight. We drove to Oakhurst, a small mountain town about 45 minutes away, for an outdoor melodrama performance.  The evening was beautiful--a welcome change from the heat of the valley. 

This week, as I mentioned, they are all up in Oregon, so it's pretty quiet around here. As I often do after things have been so busy and I need to introvert, I spend time organizing. 

My dining room is filled with things headed for the thrift store. (Bad lighting but I don't have the energy for a better picture.)
But does my sewing room ever look awesome.

Will it stay that way? Highly unlikely. I'll keep you posted.

I'm glad to be home. Hope your weekend is a good one.