Friday, November 30, 2012

Photo Op Day Trip

A photo op can appear when you least expect it, but sometimes you wake up and know that it is a great day to find some of those photo ops... intentionally.  A few years back, when we first moved here to South Texas, a couple friends took us on a mission tour.  There are a few missions along the Mission Trail in  San Antonio. We have been to a couple of the missions since then, but a couple weeks ago Ron and I decided we would try to recreate that day's adventure again.  Of course the Alamo is the start if you want to hit them all, but we started at Mission Concepcion.

The missions have lots of history and the architecture and structures are typically in varying stages of reconstruction.  There is always signs of refurbishing going on, but they have done a fabulous job of preserving these buildings and grounds.  Concepcion was not hard to find, but we kind of stumbled on it because we forgot to check out a map first.  Once you get to one of the missions, there is alot of information available to show you how to find the others.

 The second mission we visited was San Juan.  I was very disappointed that I had not brought my camera bag with me.  I hung the camera around my neck and left the bag in the car.  About half way around the perimeter I discovered that my camera battery was out.  I had a fresh battery in my bag, but I guess I learned that I should at least put my backup battery in a more accessible location... like my pocket. It was too far to go for my battery.  Ron got to take lots of great shots of the grist mill that was at the far end of this mission.  I will have to wait till next time.  Ron and I see things slightly different sometimes,  so when we are taking pictures, it is interesting to see the diverse perspectives.

 I really enjoy taking pictures at Mission Espada, specifically this church.  I often find doors to be very interesting.  Mission Espada even has a mission kitty.

I have quilted a few quilts lately, but somehow my camera wasn't handy, because it seems I am missing all those pictures.  This is the last one I quilted.  It was only a baby size quilt, but sometimes they are the most fun because I can finish them quickly.  This one has giraffes and lions and elephants.  I often like to piece the back... it adds character to the quilt, and usually it is because the backing was a little short.

This quilt is for a lady at church that really doesn't sew.  The quilt was pieced by a family member and it has been waiting for quite some time to be quilted.  When I received the top, there was no backing with it, which meant that it would be a whole lot easier for me to find something in my stash than it would be to try to explain what type and size the fabric needed to be for the back.  I found a piece that had many of the colors, but it was just shy of being large enough to work.  I matched it up with another fabric and I thought it made a perfect addition to the character of the back. 

I will have to get busy in the next couple of weeks so that I can finish a quilt or two before Christmas.

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Happy Thanksgiving

Today is pretty quiet here at home.  Up until a couple days ago, we were going to be heading to Arizona for a Thanksgiving dinner with family.  It was going to be a combined Thanksgiving/Christmas type of celebration.  On Sunday evening we received a call from son number two advising us that the whole family was not doing too good.  Everyone was at varying stages of a cold/flu type virus. They had hoped things would start to turn around, but he figured it was best to give us enough notice to change our plans, and he was definitely sounding pretty bad himself.  I went to the store on Monday to buy a turkey... I don't think I have ever waited to buy my turkey that close to the big day.  One benefit is that I didn't need to find room in the freezer.  I haven't cooked a Thanksgiving dinner in quite a while, so I was actually looking pretty forward to it... and this one was just the two of us.

I finished a quilt the other day, and before I could get a picture taken, Boston stepped in to give her approval.  She likes to be first on the scene.  Now this is not a quilt that I pieced, but one that I quilted for a friend.

I finished a second quilt this week.  It was a Christmas quilt that I had planned to finish last year, but I didn't get the piecing done until March.  It has been sitting in the closet since.  After this pictured quilt came off the frame, I determined it was time to put that Christmas quilt on the frame.  Every once in a while it is good to quilt one of your own quilts.  I am in the process of putting the binding on, so I'm waiting to take pictures of that completed quilt.

One of my recent projects is a pretty hot item around here.  Everyone is either making these scarves, or trying to find someone to make one for them.  I have lost count on the number I have made.  There is alot of variation in the net/mesh type yarn that is available out there, but I like the Starbella Flash that I have bought several colors of at Joann's.  There are just plain Starbella colors, but the Flash does just that... it makes the scarf FLASH.  Different brands of the yarn have more in one skein, so there are scarves of a wide range of lengths.  You can get more creative with the longer lengths.... but any length... they are just FUN to wear.  Age doesn't seem to be a factor.  I have seen ladies of all ages wearing them.

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Houston is but a blur...

Last week at this time we were on a bus for our return trip from the Houston Quilt Festival.  Five of my quilting buddies and I boarded the bus shortly after 7am and it was close to 11pm before I arrived back home.  It was one very long day, but worth every minute.  Although we had until 6pm to get back to the bus... we were all so exhausted, I think we were sitting in the chairs by the door at least 1/2 hour before.

 We all brought back many treasures.  These bright yellow string backpacks helped us spot each other in the sea of people.  I had embroidered each of my friends names on their bags.  It is very important to have your hands free, and it helps to have a place to keep your purse safe from being left behind.  Now next time, I'm going to look for a pair of bionic legs.

I think the people who lived in our house before must have hung a few stockings above the fireplace... there were hooks left behind that haven't had anything hanging from them in a while. I  finished this kitty block back, maybe a year ago or so.  For a couple months the block was on my design wall.  I was going to make a whole quilt with various kitty blocks, but after I finished this one, I started the second one and I didn't like how it was turning out... so I set the project aside.  I thought I would get inspired to pick it back up and run with it at a later date.  Well, when I got it out again, I couldn't make a decision for the next block, so I hung it on the design wall.  A couple weeks ago I had an idea pop into my head.  Out in the shop I found a piece of foam board that I cut down to fit the block.  I used spray adhesive to adhere the block to the foam board, then I used a piece of ribbon that I attached with 2 pins. Couldn't get much simpler than that. I hung it on two of the mantel hooks.  So now my kitty cat block is suspended over the fireplace, and it looks like I planned it that way from the very start.