Thursday, June 26, 2008

Day Six

This is the air quality.

It seems like a really foggy day, but the fatigue, headache and slight nausea tell me otherwise. My lungs are thirsty.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Sun Rise

The air quality in the valley just keeps getting worse. I woke up feeling like I hadn't slept and was so thirsty. I can't imagine what it's like for those closer to the fires.

The local news said the number of fires is up to 107 and 10 neighborhood communities are on evacuation alert. Evacuation centers have been set up at two local High Schools, with pet evacuation centers near by. The news said it was difficult to give an accurate weather forecast because the smoke was influencing temperatures and visibility. Ya THINK??

We're okay at my house but co-workers and friends are packing valuables should they receive the call. It's odd to go to work and act like nothing's going on, but there's nothing else for it.

Monday, June 23, 2008

The Results

We could've used the rain that usually follows a lightening storm. This weekend the news reported ninety fires in our county as a result of lightening strikes. There are so many over 60 of them are unmanned, there's just not enough staff.

It's fire season in our area, but never has there been so many spread out across so much land.

Montgomery Woods redwood grove is in the middle of one of the burns. Redwoods are fire resistant but that doesn't mean all the undergrowth in that State Park is.

A friend of mine has a co-worker staying at his house, she had to evacuate her home on the ridge overlooking Montgomery Woods. She got out just before the access road to her house was closed by Fire Fighters.

The air quality in Ukiah Valley is awful. My office mates have said they feel tired, nauseaous, dizzy. Someone commented on all the poison oak that's burning... we're staying indoors with the windows closed. Predicted highs today: 92.

It seems like there might be an analogy here about beauty and destruction coming hand in hand, but I can't bring myself to make it.

Light Show

Friday night I woke up alittle before 4 because I thought a camera flash had gone off in my face. I finally realized it was a lightening storm, the first of its size in this area in 15 years.

I pulled a quilt from the rack in the front room and let myself out on the front porch, curled up in a chair and watched the light display.

It was amazing. No rain, just shock after shock of lightening bolting down from the sky. Sometimes the yard was lit as bright as day. I counted one thousand one, one thousand two, one thousand three... till the thunder rumbled, mostly till seven. But once in awhile they came in the count of three, then the house shook, the window behind my head rattled and I felt it in my breast bone.

It just went on and on and on. I'd heard of colored lightening before, but that night I got to see it, pink and blue and white so bright my eyes involuntarily closed. Frank grabbed a quilt and joined me and we sat and watched the night sky lit with colors.

Rain never came and we eventually became chilled and went inside. But *WoW* The power of God!

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Progress Report

A little of this, a little of that. Each evening I add more stitches to the fabric rug.

Aesop says "Slow and steady wins the race." It's relaxing and I enjoy watching it grow.

Patching the Patches

I've been working on replacing the blown out fabrics on the bridal quilt. Once I took the back off it wasn't hard to 'reverse engineer' the patches.

Here's one section complete.

And here's the largest section mostly done. It hasn't been as tedious as I thought it was going to be. I'm also enjoying the memories of my early marriage that flow through my thoughts as I work. Breathing new life into the old. :cD

There's a noticable difference between the strength and stability of the new fabrics next to the old. If it was a customer's quilt I'd probably discourage them from trying to do what I'm doing. I'm reminded of the verse in the New Testament that advises against sewing new cloth onto old. But I plan on adding a fresh batt and machine quilting it along the seams to strengthen it. I guess I'm preserving memories as much as anything.

Monday, June 16, 2008


And all the while I'm repairing the bridal quilt, I'm piecing HST's for the Ocean Wave.

Trimmed to 1-3/4"

This'll keep me busy for awhile...

Moonlight Show Part II

These next few are from Mitzi Dowling, hand applique on a small scale extrordinaire. The entire quilt is maybe 60" square. Click to enlarge.

'Le Jardin'

The rest are from the Featured Artist - The Quilt Mavens. Amazing!

Quoting the Mavens: 'Cressida', 2004 was our second collaborative quilt, and proved to both of us that we were totally insane.

Crown of Isis


Jungle Ju Ju

Friday, June 13, 2008

Santa Rosa Moonlight Quilters Show

Had a fabulous three-day weekend last week. I visited Nathan and together we went to the annual quilt show. Eye candy!

A Little Celebration - a miniature

Teddy Bear Paws - a miniature
The Stars Come Out at Night - a small scale quilt

Color Play

Everything But the Kitchen Sink
Mahola - paper pieced

New Mexico Mountains - influenced by Sally Collins' miniature work
On Eagles Wings

Poppy Field

Reflections of the Serengti I

Reflections of the Serengit II
Tumbling Out of Sight
~ More later

The Next Twenty-nine Years

Frank and I were married in August of '79. There were 13 weddings among our friends and classmates that summer. We had to jockey for position on the church calendar. I remember my girl friends and I attended many, many bridal showers that year. The Dorcas sewing circle at the church presented each of the brides to be with a patchwork quilt. They were true scrap quilts pieced from whatever was donated to the group. I was pleased and excited when I saw mine, the colors worked together and there wasn't any double knit!

We've used and loved this quilt and it went to college when Nathan moved out. Here it is on my clothes line in the late afternoon shade.

And close-ups. It was tied with embroidery thread and many of the fabrics just weren't suitable.

I've removed all the ties and will take the back off, replace the errant fabrics and see if I can breath new life into this dear thing.

Too many memories to let go...

Monday, June 02, 2008

Back to the Drawing Board

This looks like an innocent little alternate block, it's part of the Ocean Wave I'm currently waste deep in.

I've made this block four times. FOUR TIMES! I don't mean I've sewn four blocks. I mean I've sewn, ripped, picked, pressed and resewn the same block over and over. It's mostly because I'm such a trusting soul. The pattern said to cut the center square 4-3/4" and so I did. But the block came out 6-1/2" unfinished instead of 5-1/2". What did I do wrong?
After more efforts to solve the mystery than I will bore you with here, I threw it down in disgust late last night. I'll take a fresh look at it tomorrow, 'do the math' and conquer this puppy. Then I realized all I had to do was draft it out, like 'the old dayz.'

I started with the unfinished outside measurement, drew a 'Square within a Square' block, added seam allowance and measured that. Sonofagun. When I pieced it this time it came out spot on. Then I remembered the instructions had also told me the 5-1/2" main blocks finished at six inches... The errors in this pattern are compounding.
The source of this pattern is from someone we all know and respect in blogland and in the quilt world, so what the??

It reminds me of the verse in I Thessalonians 5:21, "Test everything. Hold onto the good." Never assume until you do the work yourself. Anybody can have a bad pattern creation day...