Thursday, November 30, 2023

Really Random Thursday, 11/30/23

 And just like that, November is over. 

It always takes awhile to get fall color here in the valley, but it does eventually arrive, and it's always worth the wait.

Mark and I were treated to dinner by good friend, Lois; her daughter, Hannah, was in town and was able to join us. Such a fun evening.
I follow @loganlisle on Instagram. Two guys sitting on a dock telling jokes to each other. Mostly "dad" jokes. They always make me laugh.

Lunch with friends. I think about doing this all the time at my house, but I have yet to carry through. I guess I always think it has to be a big production. Connie opens her home with generous hospitality, serving salad, bread and soup. Simple and wonderful. She inspires me to do the same.


While Aaron, Christa and Levi were at the Grand Canyon, and Mark was busy one evening, Charlotte, Gabe, Ella and I went to see the new Trolls movie and then had dinner at Spaghetti Factory. 
Charlotte spent the weekend home alone. She is 17, after all. But she did come over to our house a few times. We had a crochet session where I taught her how to make a granny square. She did a great job on her very first try.
I love that Gabe loves to decorate for Christmas. He helps me every year. This year, Levi, who usually helps with the outside lights, was in Arizona, so Gabe helped with both the inside and outside. 

Thanksgiving was a great day with lots of good food (Aaron made turkey breast, ribs and salmon) and family. But we forgot to take a family photo. At least I got a picture of the table. And my plate. :)

My birthday fell two days after Thanksgiving, and we celebrated with breakfast. The food was awesome, but the best part was just being together.
Because Charlotte is now my crochet partner, I couldn't resist getting each of us a cute ornament that looks like a skein of yarn. I hope she will have a few hours over the Christmas break to do some crocheting together. 

Christa's mom, Debbie, made the cutest wooden trees for the members of her Bible study. She had a couple of extra ones and I was a lucky recipient. 

Well, that's it for November. I've been spending a lot of time in my sewing room, so I'll post my progress tomorrow. 

Friday, November 10, 2023

Sewing Room Friday, 11/10/23

 I had planned on doing more sewing, but we were gone over the weekend so I didn't get much accomplished. 

Whenever I finish a project that I've spent a lot of time on, I have a hard time revving up the engine again. I just feel out of sorts. My good friend, Amanda, was making the best blocks out of her Denyse Schmidt stash so I asked if I could basically copy her. She gave her permission. I made one block, which I really like, so I think I will forge ahead and make some more.

I also concurrently thought I would begin the popular Norah quilt, and even made the center square. But the Norah quilt uses long strips of fabric, so while I think I would really like a Denyse Schmidt version, my pieces are small. So I'm rethinking that idea. I might like a Christmas version. I'll pull some Christmas fabrics together and see what I think.
We photographed two quilts while at the coast, and that was really fun. I'm thinking of doing a 2024 calendar, The Mural District, and I needed two more murals. And Mark is always so willing to hold quilts for me. 

These murals were stunningly gorgeous. They are by an artist named Maria Molteni. I wish I could have gotten the entire mural but it was so large. There is a row of friendship stars all along the top, but I would have had to stand even further away.
And then that car showed up...but I still love this photo.

At first, the sun was glaring on this mural. So we went across the street to a wine bar and waited till the sun went down a little bit. It was a nice way to pass the time while we waited. And then all of a sudden the timing was right. We ran across the street, took the photos, and then went back and leisurely finished my wine. :)

And that's it for the sewing room this week.

Thursday, November 9, 2023

Really Random Thursday, 11/9/23

 We went to an elementary cross country meet last Thursday afternoon. I think there were three schools competing.

In 5th and 6th grade boys, Gabe finished 5th.

In 5th and 6th grade girls, Ruby finished 4th.
In 4th grade girls, Ella and Amelia did very well too.
Mark has been refereeing sports for a long time--52 years in fact. He began in college and, with a short break while he was a traveling salesman, has been consistently reffing all those years. While he does football, basketball and girls softball, this year he decided it would be the last year for Friday night high school football. As he says, the boys are always 16 to 18 years of age, but he keeps getting a year older.

He was unable to ref what would have been his final Friday night game because of his kidney stone. It was disappointing--an anticlimactic way to end his varsity football career. And then his good friend called and said plans had been made for him to complete his career in a playoff game. Without having to actually ref the game. 

He wore his uniform, did all the pregame activities, came on the field for the coin toss and spotted the ball following the opening kickoff.  At that point, all the players stayed off the field, and over the loud speaker the announcer made a really nice announcement about it being his last game. He got hugs from coaches and players before he walked off the field. 

He was able to sit in the stands and just enjoy the game. An added bonus, which I had known all week but was a complete surprise to him, was that Christa came with Ella, Gabe and Levi (Charlotte was performing in a play and Aaron was reffing a playoff game).

It was such a nice tribute and great way to end his Friday night career.

On Saturday, Mark went to see Charlotte's play, as he had been unable to attend the previous week.

On Sunday we left for a few days at the coast. It was such a nice, relaxing time. We were able to have lunch with good friend, Jullie.

Beautiful flowers.

I didn't take many photos this time. We always like it when it's foggy.

And we did have one beautiful sunset.
I'm ready to go back.

Friday, November 3, 2023

Sewing Room Friday, 11/3/23

 Remember that stack of fabric from last week?

I got busy making another version of Sorbet, which was only 40" square. I had always wanted to make a larger version. 

I got to this point, where all the blocks were made, and the top four rows were already sewn together, and then I decided the four darkest vertical colors were wrong, wrong, wrong.
Too maroon/burgundy.
More purple. Ah, so much better.
I'm really happy with this version. It measures 70" x 75" and I have named it Weave.

And all those blocks that were voted off the island? They found a new home on the backing.

Lastly, more progress on my granny squares. 

And that does it for the final week of October.

Thursday, November 2, 2023

Really Random Thursday, 11/2/23

 Hello, November. Today my father would have been 96 years old! The funniest thing I remember about him and his birthday is that he always thought he was at least five years older than he really was. So I'm sure if he were still around, he would say he never thought he would live to be over 100! The other part of the story is that he always remembered the year he was born. So the next part of the conversation would always be, "I was born in 1927. YOU do the math!" Yep, you are not 100...but we never argued with him. 

Charlotte is a senior this year and has been working countless hours as assistant director of the fall performance, a play based on a true story of two men who collected the works of William Shakespeare to have them printed into a book for future generations.

Then, on top of her duties as AD, a day or two before the first performance, she had to take the place of an actor performing two different characters, and learn all those lines in like 24 hours. She did such an amazing job. No one would have ever guessed she had just learned those lines. Literally the definition of "the show must go on." Super proud of this girl.

Our church had a "trunk or treat" on Sunday afternoon. Here is Jason. He keeps his head shaved now, but at some point he actually had hair like this.
Gabe decided to be Garth from Wayne's World. 

On Halloween night, Aaron and Christa always pull out the firepit to the driveway, and in addition to candy, offer hot cider to the parents of trick-or-treaters. It's such a great tradition. They also make something to eat for family and friends who get to visit together while the kids are out getting candy. 

Besides Gabe's costume, Ruby was definitely one of my favorites--she was a jellyfish. So cute and clever! 

Haha #1

Sorting out the candy...

And if the time comes that I need a costume, I hope I remember to copy this one:

Haha #2

Books I read in October.  You know by now that I always love anything by William Kent Krueger. I'm getting closer to the end of the series and that makes me sad. 
My favorite book this month was Hello Stranger by Katherine Center, an author I really enjoy. This is a story about a portrait artist who sustains a brain injury, causing her to have acquired face blindness, where she does not recognize faces at all. Of course the romance aspect was fun, but the whole idea of face blindness was really fascinating. I listened to the audible version, which I highly recommend as the narrator was superb. Five stars for sure. 
And that's it for the beginning of November.