Thursday, May 31, 2012

Online Friends

Nancy S., Lori H., and Henrietta
Gavins Point Dam
Yankton, SD
May 2012
Lori (Dakota Quilter) and I have been online friends for a couple of years, and recently, Marilyn and I had the opportunity to meet and visit with Lori and her long-time friend Henrietta.

Although I didn't know it at the time, Julia who I met by chance in Lincoln, NE is also a friend of Lori's. Oh yes, it is a small world.

Lori volunteers at the Gavins Point Dam, and we were privileged to have a private tour with Lori as our guide.

Some of the original tools were on display.
Lori said it is a tradition to have a yellow bicycle in a dam.
Lori explains the generators to Marilyn and Henrietta. 
Original control panels for the generators.

Lori also recommended some quilt shops in Sioux City, IA and Mankato, MN. The shops were wonderful. Thanks, Lori.

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

What a Concept

spotted in New Ulm, MN
May 2012
I spotted this sign on a bar across the street from a quilt shop in New Ulm, MN. I wonder how many women took advantage of the "service."

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

A Pleasant Surprise

"Let Your Sparkle Out!"
2012 Biennial Quilt Show
Lincoln Quilter's Guild
May 18 - 20, 2012
Lincoln, NE
Last week, Marilyn and I stopped at the 2012 Biennial Quilt Show in Lincoln, NE. On display were 350 quilts made by Lincoln Quilter's Guild members.

 A separate area featured an exhibit of 102 Quilts of Valor.

Sara K (QOV coordinator), Nancy S., and Julia S. (co-QOV coordinator)
At the Quilt of Valor information table, Marilyn and I added a note of thanks and our names on some prepared, signature quilt blocks. It was at this table, I unexpectedly met two women with whom I'd never met before that day but with whom I shared a prior connection.

More about our chance meeting is posted on the QOV blog.

Julia S. (shown at right in the photo above) was the volunteer machine-quilter for Controlled Spin (QOV #7), and Sara K. is a Wyoming Breezes follower who used to live in Sheridan, WY. It was great fun to meet these two dynamic ladies and to marvel at our chance meeting.
Julia S. bids us farewell and safe travel.

Monday, May 28, 2012

Up and Running

Nothing is worse than a battery that does not hold a charge, especially if it is the lifeblood of a laptop computer. Over the last few months, my MacBook has delivered less and less battery-operation time, and eventually, a warning flashed on the desktop that the battery needed replaced.

My MacBook is nearly three years old and does not have an exterior-removable battery and required a trip to the Apple store and an extended stay: the battery had to be ordered since my MacBook is an "older" model.

When I picked up the computer yesterday, I was pleasantly surprised the repair didn't cost me anything.

Saturday, May 19, 2012


My computer is in the hospital, so it may be awhile before I can post. I hope to be back up to speed soon.

Friday, May 18, 2012

Foreign Friday

Misawa, Japan
Spring 1980

I drove by this Holiday Inn, which was near one of the base gates, often; however, I never did go to check it out. Despite being a familiar business, it was the two misspellings on the sign - desco and tenpra - that caught my eye.

No matter how it is spelled, tempura or tenpura is definitely delicious, and I am sure those who went to the disco didn't care how it was spelled on the sign.

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Sky Scarf

Sky Scarf in progress
started Easter Sunday - April 8, 2012
Alpaca lace-weight yarn - size 3 needles
I was intrigued when Grace (Lovin Comfort Knits) posted about about the Sky Scarf in January. It sounded like a lot of fun.

My friend, Cheryl started the project on the first day of Spring, but I didn't get into the game until Easter Sunday. Since yarn shops are few and far between in this area, Cheryl and I both ordered the kit available from Leaf Cutter Designs. The price of the yarn is reasonable, and it arrived quickly. The kit includes the pattern, but "the pattern" (it is all garter stitch) is also available here free. 

Since only two rows are knit each day, I write the color of the sky on my desk calendar for each day. When I change the calendar the next day, the sheet goes in the Sky Scarf basket, and once a week I sit down to knit.

One fiber guild member is weaving a Sky Scarf, and another is knitting a Sunset Scarf, using the colors of each day's sunset.

Please note that Leaf Cutter has another scarf project which sounds fun if you belong to some social networking sites. Details are on the Leaf Cutter Designs link, given above.

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Bottle Baby

Bottle-feeding a calf
Photo-op for a farm visitor
One of my summer jobs on the farm was feeding the calves from a bottle (no nipple, just the bottle) and eventually teaching them to drink from a bucket. The calves were taken from their mothers after birth and fed their mother's milk via a bottle. (The fresh cow's milk was not added to the pipeline and mixed with the rest of the herd until her milk was deemed ready by my mother.) Some cows were "canners" which meant their milk was always expressed into the can for the calves and never added to the bulk tank. The calves were bottle-fed for about a week or until they would suck on the bottle and/or fingers. Once that was accomplished, then it was time to teach the calves how to drink the milk from a bucket and wean them off the bottle. Sometimes this process was a smooth one; other times, not so much.

To begin the bucket process, I entered the pen with the milk in a bucket and let the calf suck on my fingers. Then, I straddled the suckling calf, and with the other hand position the bucket under the calf's nose, gradually lowering the nose into the milk. Slowly, I removed the fingers the calf was sucking. If I was lucky, the calf would begin drinking the milk from the bucket, if not, the process would start over again. Sometimes, the calf would butt his head in the bucket, and both of us would be covered in milk.

The calves were fed milk and hay twice a day.

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Simply Precious

After I knit baby sweaters for my sisters' grandmother boxes using Bernat Jacquard yarn, Cheryl (a knitting buddy) suggested a preemie blanket using five different colorways. She purchased the yarn, and we determined the color order. Sheri (another knitting buddy) was recruited to knit a section.

The blanket was knit in stockinette stitch with a garter stitch border. Since the edges have a tendency to curl, Cheryl will probably add a crochet edge.

This precious, preemie blanket doesn't have a name.

Monday, May 14, 2012


West Coast Region
Oddball Baby Blanket
started April 2012
I had originally planned to knit a raspberry section on this Oddball blanket; however, the previous knitter had used raspberry. I added my second favorite sherbet flavor - a rainbow of lemon, orange, and lime.

Update: July 19, 2012

Friday, May 11, 2012

Foreign Friday

Children wait to participate
in the Autumn Festival Parade
Misawa, Japan
Autumn 1979

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Take the Time

Everyone has a favorite teacher, and since this is Teacher Appreciation Week, please take the time to write a quick note to former teacher and explain the difference he/she made in your life. I guarantee the note will warm his/her heart and your words will be treasured.

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Peaceful Setting

Last week I escaped the chaos at my house and found a peaceful scene under a Russian Olive tree in Lander. I first noticed the sculpture when I drove by on an errand and later decided to stop and take a photo from the driveway; however, God had other plans.

As I approached the driveway, I saw a woman mowing the grass. On impulse, I asked permission to photograph the sculpture and commented on the beauty of the piece.

As we visited about the sculpture, I learned that the woman was the artist and that her goal when creating the piece was to depict Mary in her later years.

The three jars on Mary's right represent Christ's first miracle (turning water into wine at the wedding in Canaan), and the crown of thorns Mary clutches to her heart is from Christ's crucifixion. The piece gently pulls the observer into Mary's world and is simply stunning.

Mary from Canaan to Calvary
Sculpted by Beverly Paddleford
I would have missed the opportunity to visit with the artist and to learn more about the sculpture if I had not gone back to photograph this work of art.

Monday, May 7, 2012

Cleaned Out

Not much sewing has been happening in this room, but it has been full of activity.

This room has been cleaned out, too. 

Hmmm, I can't say that about this large room. In fact, it closely resembles a scene from Hoarders.
All that I've accomplished since last Tuesday is moving piles from one room to the next because the interior of my house is getting a fresh coat of paint.

With luck, the painter will be finished with week, and I can put things back where they really belong.

Friday, May 4, 2012

Foreign Friday

Antenna on Security Hill
Misawa AFB
Autumn 1979

This elephant cage antenna was said to be the largest in the Far East and was a part of a worldwide network to monitor communication from the former Soviet Union, China, and North Korea. Construction of the antenna began July 1, 1963, and it was finished in March 1965. It has since been removed probably due to evolving technology and digital communication.

The facility, one of the last of its kind, sat next to Misawa Air Base on a 39 acre plot, called Security Hill.

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Reach for the Stars

Reach for the Stars was made with blocks left over from Controlled Spin and Love from the Heartland. I did not make the flying geese flag: it is a printed panel.

This is the thirteenth quilt in the 12 in 2012 Quilt of Valor challenge. Even though it is very scrappy, I love this happy quilt.

Reach for the Stars
Quilt of Valor
56 x 67 inches
Update: August 15, 2012

This quilt was shown on Alycia's blog today and will be wrapped around an American hero soon.

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Best Foot Forward

Finally, I have some actual knitting to show. Even though I prefer matching socks, I am pleased with these fraternal twins.

Patons Kroy Socks FX (Clover Colors) yarn - same dye lot, but striped very differently. Knit on size 2 circulars, using two 50g skeins.

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