Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Little book

More like a booklet really is just several pages.  With samples of my work to remind me of how I did certain things or things I want to try at some future point.

Anyway... here are a few of my pages.

Variegated embroidery thread.

I moved the white on white embroidery to a page with a bit of colour.   I wrote myself notes as you can see...for down the road when I'm sure to forget what things were.
Some day I want to do a pincushion with yellows and ruffles .. I still have some of the fragile silk hanky..just waiting to be used.......

The flower pounded fabric below is pretty but it never did become quite what I envisioned when I tried to piece it together so cut it into smaller pieces and have used it in my book.

I did a pincushion in taupes with a bit of another piece of flower pounded fabric and love it... I wish this one had worked out as well....but, it didn't and now...I'm just happy it's still good for something.

Wanted to show you my other flower pounding piece if you haven't see it before.  I posted it a while back. Lovely Olde Worlde tatting cut off a beautiful vintage hanky that I bought at a doll and bear show...for only pennies...I almost felt guilty.  I managed to buy 4 lovely hankies that day.  Thanks to that wonderful lady whoever she was.

Saturday, September 12, 2015

doing something...

.... almost anything to stay busy ... I have things on my mind that are happening this coming week and not looking forward to them... plus the ribs are holding me back .. so I'm just "doing" ....

I decided to make some little books in the style of Karen Ruane...

Putting some of my stitchery samples in one for me... they've just been sitting in a pretty box 'til now.

We began a larger ledger in one of her classes ...for doodles, samples and other inspirations, but, I saw that she has been making cute tiny  books... only a few pages really.. so I decided to do one.

What is it they say?  Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery...... .. hahahaha ... oh, alright ...I'm just a copycat....

Here is a page ...

Lots of various stitches on the first piece .. which is a piece of linen with some sparkly bits on it.. a gift from another member of the first class we took together... thanks Lexxi ... and, the second is a bit of hand made lace that Karen made..and I won in a little giveaway .. to which I added some pink and some white French Knots .. then.. stuck it to some water colour paper and did a bit of paper pricking.                                                                                      

Thursday, September 3, 2015

Almond Biscotti

Yep.... another month has flown.

I'm hanging out close to home because I've managed to break some ribs.....again.  It happened a few years ago as well.  Then, I leaned into a woodbox .. putting a fair bit of weight on them.  It hurt like hell when it happened ..but, like an idiot I also turned to my left and reached in again... also doing the other side.

This time, hardly any weight at all (barely leaning) on a spindly clothes drying rack...whilst trying to peer behind it into the water softener to check the salt level.  Yikes!  It felt like getting stabbed with a hot poker.  What an idiot.  There was a lot of swearing and then some crying.  Then, just being totally p.o'd.  How disappointing it is to realize I am in such a fragile way;  I've always thought of myself as 'sturdy' or physically fit even if I am a smallish person.   But, a few years ago I even gave up my motorcycle when I found out I have full blown osteoporosis.  Can't afford to get knocked off or fall off one of those if I can't even lean on something without breaking parts of me.  Let's just's bloody annoying.

Anyway.... onward.  I've been baking.  My usual fall back in so many situations.  I love baking.  And at my speed it is not too strenuous.
I can't lift out my mixer...but, Mister BV moved it onto the counter and I'm leaving it there.  For as long as it takes for me to be able to lift it once again.  It was only a week ago today that I did the stupid I have several weeks of not being able to do much.  Laughing, coughing, sneezing or any quick movements are shocking to the say the least.   Getting in and out of bed is agony.  Turning over in the night wakes me up with a start.  Okay... backtracking...hahhahah...oh, don't hurts!

These are lovely and rustic looking.  In my biscotti making over the years I've gone from wanting them to look pristine to loving the rustic, home made appearance of biscotti like these.

On my Tea and Scones blog I have more pics and the link to Nonna Pia ... (what a little sweetie) ...actually, I'll link this up as well.  She makes very soft dough.... which is the furthest thing from what most recipes make up.  She spoons it out onto the parchment paper.  Seemed so strange when I first tried it because I usually have a lump of fairly dry dough that doesn't even stick to my hands while forming the 'logs' for the first bake.

My first few test bake recipes are in preparation for ...............wait for it................................did you guess?  ..   and I'm not the first this week to be talking about it......... Christmas!

Yeh, I know.  Too early.  But, it isn't.  That's what happens isn't it?  We are still trying to have our summer fun... then, it's fall and other things happen, and, all of a sudden, whammo!  It's the festive season and we are behind the eight ball already.  Not this year.  I'm getting a jump on recipes and then, I'm going to get busy with some crafting stuff.  Yep.  This year I'm gonna be ready.

Hahahahhahahhaha..... oh, brother that really hurt.  Silly me.  I say that every year and it never happens.  But, also, having said that ...I don't have too much to do at the festive season except baking and some little crafty stuff.  Buying gifts went the way of the Dodo years ago.... when postage and bus fares went sky high.  Our families agreed to buy ourselves gifts instead.... or not.  How much does a person need anyway?  We usually spend our money on things for the house.   Luckily, this year we are not renovating....wooohoooooo ........

So, after all of those paragraphs of twaddle, how do you like my rustic, crunchy, Almond-y biscotti?

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Look at that will ya?

More than a month has passed since I last posted.

Oh, well.... it's summer.  We don't get that many months of summer up here north of the 49th.... so we make the most of it.

Golfing, gardening, hanging out on the patio sipping a cold beer .. admiring the fruits of our labour ...etc... you know how it goes.  The lawn is the best its been in spite of those pesky voles having made hundreds of trails all over the one side grew in beautifully.  Kind of like they aerated it I guess.  You'd never know they'd spent the winter wrecking things under the snow banks.

My pots are beautiful... a riot of colour this year.  I particularly love the 'million bells' flowers (Calibrachoa)  ...  they just keep on blooming all summer.  I always have yellows and pinks ... and purples ...  and even the odd orange just to get my own attention.  I don't even like the colour orange ..but, some oranges are nicer than others...and, for some silly reason, I like how orange and pink flowers look side by side.

After my visit to my sister's "fat farm"... there was no Mr. Limpy when we got back.  Nobody fed him while I was away ... and I guess he moved on to greener pastures.  Like the clubhouse at the nearby golf course.  I was there one day and a whole family of crows was perched on trees and signposts "cawing" for a handout...hahahhah...I laughed and tossed a few bits of my peanut butter sandwich in the air.  I scared one off the post... must not be my crows wouldn't be afraid of me.  I did try to call out to Limpy just to see if one of them was him...but, no limpy guy hopped down to greet me.

This is the last time I saw him .. through the window... having some fun in the birdie bath all by himself.

And, this is the last one I have of Missus..... giving me the 'come hither' look ... there is just something about her.........

We had a huge storm last Wednesday and I saw my first funnel cloud.  It gave me goose bumps.  I know the folks in Kansas and Oklahama will be saying, "big deal"... but, we don't get that type of weather around here.  Well, not often.  There was a tornado that did touch down several years ago in Edmonton, a city not too far from us ... that did a lot of damage...and a lot of people were killed.  That was a first.

I looked it up on Wiki ... here is what happened.

~~~July 31, 1987 The tornado killed 27 people, injured more than 300 people, destroyed more than 300 homes, and caused more than $332.27 million CAD ($597 million in 2015 dollars[1]) in property damage at four major disaster sites.~~~

Our day was nothing in comparison.  But, on Wednesday, I was coming home along a busy highway and cars were stopping to look  ...and take photos...traffic was doing ridiculous things.  I kept my eyes on all of them and on the clouds too... knowing I could make it home in 8 minutes and feeling as though I would beat it for sure.  Hard to tell how quickly things were moving but it was a fair ways off in the distance.  I did get home just in time to wrestle the big flower pots closer to the house.  I "walked" them by turning them side to side .. cuz I sure can't lift them.   All 8 of them.

Next, I grabbed the camera and stood in the garage with the big door open.  Got a few good ones of the clouds. The lower ones were rotating as it all moved along (just like in the movies) and I was happy it was moving south ... at quite a rate of speed .. not a funnel, but a huge dark bank of clouds... looking pretty ominous....
black as night at 1:00 pm...

then it rained ... next came hail.. then... oh, wow ... huge hailstones!!  And, seeing as folks might think I was exaggerating when I told the story, I took this photo with my tape measure to corroborate things..... no doubt how big it was now!!  I had to wait til it stopped as I didn't want to feel the bash of one of these on the old noggin.  Guess I could have worn a motorcycle helmet...but, what about the rest of my body? .. Didn't risk it.

Areas just outside the city were the hardest hit and crops decimated by the hail ....several houses totally did plenty of damage.... and apparently a small tornado touched down just outside the city limits...but, not a lot of damage in that area.

But, today is beautiful.... time to go out and water my pots...... luckily I still have pots to water. !!

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

The Fat Farm

That's what we used to call them.  You know...the "retreats" where you go to lose some weight ...get refreshed and then go back home to your normal routine.  Political correctness decrees that we shouldn't call them that anymore...but, I ain't politically I call it just that.  The Fat Farm.

This one is my sister's acreage.  We have joked about it being that since the first time I went there and did a lot of physical stuff ...and did come home 5 pounds lighter.  Since then, I don't always manage to lose, but still do a lot of things while I am there at least I am in a bit better shape when I get home ...except last time when I had an infected fingernail area... which had nothing to do with work or even her place.  It was wrecked before I left home ..but,  progressed to the point where I needed antibiotics by the time I got back here. 

This time we picked major weeds, made a new little garden area where we planted pansies given to us by a guy that had accepted the last of her spruce and fir 'baby trees' that she has been trying to get rid of for ...oh....about 8 years.  She bought them in a silent auction.... thought she was only buying a couple... she ended up with a couple of "lots" ... which consisted of plenty.  The total number of trees was well into the many hundreds. This was the last 20 or so .. by now, they had rooted right through the bottom of small pots and straight into the ground.  We had to pull them out by the roots to move them.  some were pretty big ..and heavy........... some even had 3 trees to a huge pot...

On the day before that she had begun to dig around the leaky yard hydrant, which is near the horse waterer and just outside the fencing around Mickey's paddock.  Not much room to work around it as it was situated between the waterer and a fence post, but it had to be replaced.  Digging commenced... but had to be abandoned on the first day...    too hot and it became too late in the day and ...well, one can only do so much in a day.  I forget what else came into play...but it was something..........

Next day the digging continued.  We needed to get down deep enough in our narrow trench to see the bottom of the hydrant pipe and the coupling ... everything was totally rusted and wrecked.  It was a narrow dark space; we were running out of daylight and brought out a trouble light... there were rocks and roots and rootlets everywhere and it was damp and smelly.  I hated having my head in the narrow space..could hardly breathe.  She was the trooper, as usual, and was right down in there with the crowbar.... digging around behind the pipe as well as in front of it.  We had to make enough room that when we took out the old dirt would be dislodged and fall into the lower pipe as we tried to carefully place the new one onto the threaded portion.  Once we found the lower drain area we made sure it did drain out a bit ...then, of course, there was also mud..... oh it was great.  
In the end... we got the old one off...  guided the new one into position and tried to lower it into the proper area..... et voila ..... success!  It turned into the threads nicely... we got it tighter.... tested it and it worked perfectly.  A lovely new blue handled yard hydrant.  Woohoo!  I'll just add that to our résumé  ....... along with massage, dental assisting, secretarial skills, .. re-jetting a motorcycle carbureter, baking pies, churning out muffins and cookies, doing landscape rock work, house painting,   etc...  ...  stitching up things (and, in her case, even making clothing and costumes, I don't really sew)   .. worming horses, and all the other stuff that goes with that.. etc, sheeesh.... she's got me well beat in the 'extras' department of any résumé  . ... we can now also claim to be able to replace a frost free yard hydrant.  Hah!  As if anybody would hire a couple of 60s women to do the task.  Not that I want a job.

I'm not going to tell you about the weed eater episode ... suffice to say...some things turn in the opposite direction than you may think... especially when they need to stay in position while operating in the other direction..... nobody was injured in this process as it can't even be turned onto the threads unless you get it right.

So, the upshot of it all is.....I lost 5 pounds!  

Now, off to get some groceries.  The fridge is bare.  

Oh, and.... deer.  These two came down from the top of the property one night when I was on the porch .. sitting quietly.  I'm not sure if they recognized me as a human..or if they were just not afraid...I quietly took several photos and they never did seem nervous.  Finally they moved off back up the hill.  That was fun.
Click on them to see their little faces up closer .... 

As you can tell....they were pretty cheeky and nibbled on every leaf or flower that looked like it could be tasty .... and wandered around the yard at will.  Checking out every single thing.