Tuesday, September 29, 2009

A Productive Weekend

The weather here turned dark, cloudy and dreary over the weekend - perfect weather for quilting and sleeping and I did a little of both. I managed to finish piecing, machine quilting and binding the 2 signature quilts from our August retreats. One theme was polka dot fabrics and one was red prints. I also finished hand piecing the center of my Tilt A Whirl quilt. I have the piano key border hand pieced and I think I will add that border and the small border by machine. I will post a picture of the quilt when it is finished. For some reason I felt like I needed a nap on both Saturday and Sunday and did just that. And since my recovery from surgery I have rediscovered my love for crocheting. I posted a picture of a pink baby afghan that I crocheted. My Mom brought me over a bag of odds and ends of skeins of variegated yarn that someone had given to her. I crocheted two little doll afghans. Then I decided to use up the rest of the yarn in making a scrappy full size afghan. I have really been enjoying working on that. I did take time on Sunday afternoon to go for a golf cart ride and probably rode about 10 miles. It was very enjoyable, chilly, but enjoyable.

Friday, September 25, 2009

Fun things happening at Thunder Bay Resort

Fun things are happening here at Thunder Bay Resort this fall. The bull elk have their antlers fully grown right now and are quite a sight to see. Dinner rides are available for those who would love a horse drawn carriage ride through the woods to see the big guys and their gals, then on to the Elk Antler Cabin for a 5 course gourmet dinner with wine tasting. The colors are starting to change now and are just beautiful. We are also on You Tube too. I have not see the videos yet but I hear Mark Lipinski is hillarious. Check out our website to see the videos and see what else is happening here at Thunder Bay Resort. We also have two more retreats scheduled for Oct. Sherrie Jaqua will be here on Oct. 15 for a Quilter's Murder Mystery Retreat, complete with a murder and a mystery quilt. Sue Nickels will be here on Oct. 22 and will teach her award winning machine applique. Full details can be found on our website.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

A New Bridge in Hillman

Who says nothing exciting ever happens in Hillman? The bridge in town, over the Thunder Bay Rover is very old and is now being replaced. There are lots of mixed emotions among the community and I have to agree with both sides. The bridge is historical so it is sad to see it go but there are also safety factors that need to be considered. Our bridge is a double camel bridge constructed of concrete. Those who have been under the bridge say that there is a lot of decay in the cement. A temproary bridge is being built right now that we will be using while the permanent bridge is being built. From the pictures that I have seen the new bridge will look similiar to the old bridge. Plans are also underway to bury the utility lines along Main street. All of this is to be completed by next August. I was in Okemos (near Lansing) last weekend and they have a single camel back bridge there. It is now just a one way street with a second bridge built next to it for the other lane of traffic. It doesn't look as though any attempt was made to keep the look of the original bridge there.

Friday, September 18, 2009

Firemen's Memorial

My husband, Steve has been a volunteer fire fighter here in Hillman for over 30 years. I am very proud of him and his service to our community. He has also created a Fire Ministry for the Hillman Fire Department, offering financial help to those who lose their homes to fire. This weekend is the 30th Annual Firemen's Memorial Festival in Roscommon. We are planning to go to the festival tomorrow. A highlight of the festival for me is the parade. It consists mainly of fire trucks and rescue vehicles all running their flashing lights and sirens. They also hold a very emotional memorial service at the monument for fire fighters who have lost their lives in the line of duty. Some of the other activities include water ball contests, demonstrations, a flea market, craft show, a chicken barbeque, music, vendor booths, fire trucks galore and carnival rides. We are planning to take our 4 year old grandson, London with us tomorrow. It will be his first Firemen's Memorial. Speaking of London, he started pre-school this week. He and his Mom invited me to go woth them on the first day of school. I felt so honored to be invited. Today was his "official" first day of school. He and his Mom both told me that he was very excited and had no tears. He met a new friend and he told us his name is Rocco. He and Rocco had fun playing with Thomas the Train and the dirt bikes. Mom (Tasha) shared with me that this has been a tough week for her. Her "little man" grew up really fast this week. I told her I remember those days. Any stories to share?

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

A Wonderful Quilter's Friendship Day

Friday my Mom and I took a road trip to AuGres, MI for a Friendship Day hosted by the Wednesday Night Strippers. AuGres is about 100 miles from Hillman and we drove through very dense fog all the way there. The trip was very worth while as we had a great time. The "Strippers" know how to host a party. There were approximatley 100 ladies in attendance. The Guild members had several quilts and quilted jackets hung around the room. We were all asked to vote for our favorite quilt. The quilt I voted for (a stained glass block of the month quilt) won second place. In fact the first place quilt (a hand appliqued, hand quilted quilt) was made by the same lady who made the stained glass quilt. The members also participated in a challenge using a specific fabric and the theme sunrise. We also voted on our favorite challenge quilt. The pictures here are of two of those challenge quilts. We enjoyed participating in a chinese auction with lots of "quilty" items to bid on. We enjoyed visiting with two vendors, Bayview Calicos of Au Gres and Hollyhock Quilt Shop of Harrisville. Not only can the "Strippers" quilt but they can also cook as we were treated to a delicious salad luncheon which also included delicious desserts. It was a great day hanging out with quilters, visiting friends whom I hadn't seen in a long time and spending the day with my Mom.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Another Completed UFO

I finished another quilt a week or so ago. This quilt is Hip To Bee Square made in a class with Amy Davidson during a Thuner Bay Resort Quilter's Retreat last June. Amy is an excellent teacher and a wonderful designer. She will be back at Thunder Bay Resort next April. Those of you who know me know that I prefer hand quilting. I usually say that I am cheap and long arm quilting is not. Well, sometimes I feel that long arm quilting makes a quilt and that is how I felt about this quilt. Terry's Quilting from Gaylord, Michigan did the quilting on this quilt. I got the quilt back from Terry just a couple of days before I went into the hospital so it sat at my house for almost 4 months before I was able to get the binding sewn on. I am sorry that the picture is a bit dark. I was going to take the quilt outside this morning and hang it on the clothesline for a picture but I didn't want to risk wet feet and a wet quilt from the dew on the ground.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

A Beautiful Labor Day Weekend

How was your Labor Day Weekend. Our weather was perfect ... and even better than that we spent the entire weekend with our family. Thursday afternoon after my Guild meeting Tasha, London and I drove to Mackinac City. We met up with Heather and Allie and then spent some time on the shore of Lake Huron under the Mackinac Bridge. The kids played with the stones, sand and water and us girls visited. Then we went to Burger King for dinner. Heather went back home to Mackinac Island and Allie came home with us. She was two in May is just absolutley beautiful and so much fun. She spent 5 days with us. Friday Tasha, London, Allie, our great nephew Gabe and I went to some garage sales. Then we decided to have an impromptu picnic/pool party at my parents house. We called my sister Connie and she went out there with 2 of her grand kids and my niece Courtney was there. We had a great time swimming and visiting. Allie is like a fish and loves the water and so do I. I don't do much swimming but it is so relaxing just to float in the pool. Saturday we went for golf cart rides and the kids rode their bikes. We went to Steve's brothers house to see the cows. Sunday after Church we had a carnival/pool party/pot-luck at my parents house. I am from a large family and we all enjoy getting together and hanging out. The kids played so hard and had a great time. Yesterday Heather came to pick Allie up and we went back out to the pool. It was hard to send Allie back home again - we had so much fun with her. But this Nana was tired too. In fact I was in bed by 9:30 last night. I got absolutely no sewing done during the weekend but that was perfectly fine with me. How did you spend your holiday weekend?

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

A Day of Canning

I do other things besides quilting and sewing although they are my second love, my first being my family. Last weekend we canned 26 pints of beets from our garden. Because rain was predicted for the weekend and because Steve had to work on Saturday we went out to the garden on Friday night and dug up the beets. Well, actually Steve did the digging and I used some huge scissors to cut the tops off. We filled a wheel barrow with beets. Steve washed them off with the garden hose and put them in the garage. Saturday morning I got the jars washed up, then started boiling and peeling the beets. By the time Steve got home I was ready for his help in running the beets through the pressure cooker. Since my surgery I am still a bit leary about doing any heavy lifting. And since the garden had to be planted shortly after my surgery Steve did all of the planting and weeding. We have canned several quarts of beans from our garden and enjoyed eating peas (edible pods) and we have a few containers in the freezer. I have made several batches of zuchinni bread for the freezer and for the kids and we have enjoyed a few tomatoes from the garden. Our tomatoes didn't do too well this year but we have been told by several "old timers" that this hasn't been good weather for tomatoes this summer. I hope to buy some tomatoes and peaches for canning in the next few weeks.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Three more Round Robin Quilts

As promised here are the pictures of the last 3 Round Robin quilts that were shared at the retreat two weeks ago. Every time I look at the pictures I am just in awe. All of the quilts are just beautiful. I hope that I will be able to see the finished quilts some day. I have heard that some Round Robins don't have such happy endings. I have heard about quilters who drop out and do not return the quilt tops to the rightfull owners. A very good friend of mine was involved in a Round Robin a couple of years ago. Her center block was an appliqued basket. She had ideas of flowers in the basket. Someone else decided it reminded her of a basket of eggs so she appliqued eggs in the basket. Another participant went with a chicken theme and Helen's quilt quickly turned into a chicken quilt. Unknown to the rest of the participants Helen is scared to death of chickens. So I guess when you get involved in this type of activity you have to be prepared for anything. I would love to hear your Round Robin stories, just leave a comment.