Tuesday, September 20, 2022

Autumn Jubilee Rules and Notices

Well, Carole is again hosting her Autumn Jubilee!  There are always a variety of projects to try.  Some years I just do a few, but perhaps this time I will finish at least the quilt she designs for readers.

She has arranged for drawings with different sponsors too.

So here is the link - give it a try!




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Since last posting, I have taken several more EBHQ classes, have visited quilt shops in CA, and in other states,  It has been fun.  I have photos, perhaps I will post to share later....


Sunday, April 24, 2022

EBHQ Make Words Not War

Attended another online EBHQ workshop by Cheryl Arkison.  This time she covered making pieced fabric letters.  She covered fabric, color, cutting tips, style tips, information about letters (kerning, etc.)

I first learned about piecing fabric letters while participating in the Block Lotto in 2012 - back then it was very difficult for me to make the letters.  Now though with Cheryl's tips and techniques I was able to get most of the letters I wanted to make done in class. A B O U F L C W - just need K and S in the fabric I selected today.  Tomorrow hope to finish K S and add T I R E N - then you will know what I am up to!

: )

Tomorrow evening she is presenting a lecture that is open to the public.


EBHQ Scraptastic Options

I attended a really wonderful EBHQ zoom workshop with Cheryl Arkison presenting: Scraptastic Options.

Even though I had read her book "Sunday Morning Quilts" the presentation covered it all more in detail so it was really nice.  She is one of those teachers who really enjoys quilting and people - it was a pleasure to spend the day with her and with the EBHQ community.

First she discussed different ways she organizes scraps.  The book just has some measurement guidelines, but she really explained how she does it - as a model for us to consider ourselves.  There was time to organize.  I only was able to do the first sorting as I was trying to do it all with fabric balance on my lap using a bankers box lid as the table.  The people who really spread out were able to do much more.

Then she went thru the process of making a block with the larger scraps and gave us sewing time.  Then the other sizes with more time to try things out.  At each level she also showed examples, and gave us more ideas and tips so we could be successful.

I'm excited to really get into organizing my scraps and using her ideas to make my own quilts.

I recommend both her book and taking workshops from her.


Tuesday, April 12, 2022

Places to Go, Things to Read

I am hoping to take a driving trip from coast to coast this summer.

Did this once before in a car*. It was so much fun. On one way it was my husband and me, on the way back a friend from Sweden, Christina, flew over so we could do the drive together. (*Also did a cross country trip in a motorhome with husband, son, and cat!)

I spent a week with her in NYC years before.  She had done this before and was prepared with a list of art museums and we spent a day in most of them. I thought it would end up being repetitive, but any that did cross over added to my understanding and appreciation. We weren't tied at the hip. Generally we would set up place and time to meet for lunch and at the end. Great fun. It was wonderful.

We took the train from Boston, and made got tickets to see The Heiress? with Dan Stevens (of Downton Abbey) while on the train...  I remember after we saw the play I commented on how could he do the play and be in Downton Abbey - and she said with the timing of when the show was on TV in USA vs Sweden that I didn't know something and should just wait to find out! : )

As soon as we got to NYC we got passes for the train/bus that would last the week so we didn't have to stop to buy things every trip.  Great idea.

We stayed at the Edison Hotel - near to Times Square and lots of restaurants.  A lot of Swedish people stayed there according to my friend.  It has since been renovated and I think the prices are even higher. The room with her overlooked the Barrymore!  Later that summer, when I returned with my husband, we could see the flashing lights from Times Square reflected on the glass of the building across the way.

We started most mornings having breakfast at a place near Fox News and by St Patrick's Cathedral. Can't find it now in Yelp.  (EverGreen Cafe?) One day when we were there we could see lots of activity and concern at the side of Cathedral - turned out the Pope had announced his resignation.

Instead of taking the subway, my friend and I mainly took the bus so we got a feel for the locations of the museums and places we visited. 

Frick Collection  https://www.frick.org/

The Whitney Museum of American Art https://whitney.org/

New York Public Library  https://www.nypl.org/

The Museum of Modern Art (MoMA)  https://www.moma.org/

The Brooklyn Museum  https://www.brooklynmuseum.org/

The Metropolitan Museum of Art  https://www.metmuseum.org/

We went to plays and the movies every night. Except one snowy night I took the train to visit a school friend of my son's while my friend went to see original The Book of Morman. 

We went to the High Line and the City Quilter. Walked thru Central Park and thru the NYU. Found a kitchen supply shop that was lots of fun to see, had lunch at what we thought would be a little cafe, but turned out to be a popular place.  (It may have been the Coffee Shop Bar, 29 Union Square West, NY, NY, 10003 - Yelp says it's closed now. I just found the business card!) Walked by Hotel Chelsea - my honeymoon hotel!

Somewhere I hope I can find the list of where we went on that trip!

And a list of places visited on the driving trip to and from the east coast!

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Anyway, for 2022, I asked the group attending Joe Cunningham's Friday group for suggestions on quilt or art places to stop and this is what they contributed:
  • Shelburne Museum (VT)
  • International Quilt Museum (Lincoln NE)
  • de Young Museum (San Francisco CA)
  • Joe also has quilts in Newark NJ and Michigan State University
  • I asked at in a comment on FromMyCarolinaHome.com and Carole suggested Quilt Museum (Paducah, KY)
  • Also remembered hearing Missouri Star Shops were fun to see too in Hamilton, Missouri.
Any other ideas are welcome!

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This trip I have Audible so thought my husband and I could listen to some books while driving...

Joe Cunningham's Friday group suggested:
Series by: Terry Pratchett, John McPhee, David Rosenfelt, Andrea Camilleri, Alan Bradley, J.K. Rowling (Harry Potter)
Books: A Gentleman in Moscow, 9th St Woman, Remembrance of Things Past

I had intended on quickly downloading books before my subscription renewed, but I misremembered how Audible worked. So for a few hours thought I had lost the ability to use the 8 credits I had remaining with my first subscription. On what I thought was the last day the subscription had flipped to 12 credits for the new year. But a simple email and phone call later I have 20 credits in my account so I did not lose any credits. What I have now will expire at the end of the subscription again (so I'm glad I had earlier changed the account from 24 to 12 books a year as I do not seem to be able to listen to more paid books than that). Thumbs up to Audible!

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My husband always brings his computer on trips and keeps a log of hotels stayed at in his calendar. He is so organized!  But I just write notes on scraps of paper and sometimes in my phone.

My quilting friend, Claire, has a notebook where she writes down the dates and names of guests and what food is served!  A terrific idea.  

During the covid shut in I started to keep a meal and food log, but when I came to the end of the notebook I lost days and haven't been consistent after the first book.  Lots of information lost.  I do have bills for food that someday I want to buy exactly the same items to see the price changes....  It is difficult to know how much detail to include, as I don't know my audience for the logs...

If I were to live my life over though, I would get a notebook to record information for trips so I could have fun remembering things and could recommend things to others...

Well, back to going thru books filled with papers that I didn't organize before now!

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Amazon Cart Updates:

2020-08-28


2022-04-10


Added 9-17-22 - Prices are creeping up!

Bought Dunkn Donuts Coffee at Costco this week.  Usually around $14, now $23!
Amazon and Costco Update Added 10-6-22 


Sunday, January 30, 2022

Memories: Four Non-Forever Friends

One

When our son was little we had Australian friends who came and visited.  Actually we only knew them because the husband was writing up an Australian version of a program that I wrote the documentation for the American version.   Anyway, at the time they seemed to be to be only family with new little baby so they came and stayed with us for a while.  They did that a few times and I remember walking with them and thinking how we would be couple friends forever and would see each other kiddos grow up and be friends too.  

But sadly that didn't happen.  

The husband got a job with Microsoft so they moved to the US for a few years.  They were in a different state though. More importantly we did not keep up writing letters or keeping in touch.  When they moved back to Australia instead of coming to see us they would fly to the East Coast and stay with someone else.  I wrote letters but did not get a reply, so when I heard they were visiting the other family gave up writing.  It was a great loss to me to not have that forever friendship. It would have enriched our lives so much to have that connection - the adults and the children.

I learned a lot from that Australian woman while they were here and when we were writing each other.  She had one slightly older daughter who also stayed with us.  My mom bought that little girl a beautiful dress with pink polka dots on a black background as a going away gift, it was so much fun to have them stay with us.  It was wonderful to see the kids interacting and playing together.  

She taught me how to make playdough - and we would set the kids up each with a little pile of the stuff on what she named the playdough counter.  It's a divider between our kitchen eating area that is about 18 inches high on the eating side and you (the adult) can stand at the den side and easily do crafts with little kiddos.  Other people may get high stools and serve drinks on the counter, but we always used it for crafts.  

I had our son go to UCSD to be part of a study about delayed language - he was not talking when I signed him up, but was talking by the time the study started.  He would be in a room with a student doing whatever they asked with blocks and things - and they would ask him questions.  I could look thru the window and see and hear what was going on.  They asked if he had a sister and he said he had, but she moved back to Australia. Little kids. It made me so sad to hear him say that.

She gave me these wonderful cookbooks that showed how to make special birthday cakes - she said it was fun to make them instead of just buying them.  To this day we always make our birthday cakes here. 

She also told me about the concept of 'parent and me' playgroups.


Three More

I looked into parent and me playgroups and my son and I had fabulous times not only at the classes (operated thru park and recreation programs) but even more wonderfully after a few years.  Three mothers got together and organized a private group and we were invited to join in.  For several years every Friday we would trade houses and the hostess would plan activities for the kids and food for us to share.  I don't think we even did potluck, it was as I recall, all the responsibility for the hostess to entertain and feed for the day.  Those ladies and the kids were so special to me.  

It turned out one child was born the day before our son at the same hospital, and the other was born the same day at the same hospital.  Years later we realized we had photos of her and her husband in the recovery room in our photos!  

It was so much fun to be part of a group.  When we would take a little trip, I would bring back three little things to share with them.  

We helped one of the families move to their new home and had fun at birthday parties and holiday events.  Then one year before the Christmas party that was to be at our home one of the ladies decided we should not exchange any gifts - adults or children.  We certainly don't need gifts, but I was shattered as my son did not have siblings or cousins - that was the role the Friday Group was to play for him.

I still thought we'd know each other and be friends forever.  But the kids started kindergarten then and we mainly stopped seeing each other. 

The real kicker was years later when we finally did get together, I discovered that one of the kids had gotten married more than a year before.  I really felt out of their lives then. I know how difficult it can be to invite people to a wedding - there is an extra cost for each guest, and brides may restrict the number of groom family invitees so they can have more from their side of the clan present -  but I thought I'd get a phone call or email telling me of the engagement or wedding.  

Every few years one of us will contact the others, but the closeness is gone. There doesn't seem to be any point to asking questions and catching up now.



Monday, January 10, 2022

Memories: Waldorf Kindergarten

When we were looking for schools for our son, the local school gave us a very bad impression.  Remember this was before all the school tragedies - but the school had signs saying that parents were not allowed on campus, not just that they were to sign in thru the office, but they were not permitted on campus!  That and that there were no grouping for writing or math put me off of the school.  Another school only used workbooks for the kids to learn - it was a very non-creative environment.  Another one had a super high percentage of handicapped and disabled children who needed diapering and feeding care. None of the schools had groupings for writing and math, only reading...

So when we were thinking about what school to have our son attend we started hearing about Waldorf.  There were three times we learned about it, let's see if I can remember any of them.  The last was a notice at a garage sale telling about the Waldorf Open House. I will think to see if I can remember the other ways.  

Anyway, Waldorf seemed perfect as it was so arts and craftsy - the opposite of what my husband and I could offer our son.  He started in a kindergarten program.  Before school started I missed hearing that the kids were supposed to wear different colors on different days of the week.  We had red, yellow, and green shirts, but needed orange and purple. So that first day after leaving our son off I went to the store to get some white t-shirts and fabric paint - so we could decorate a shirt together.  But I got rear ended that afternoon, so was late with picked our son up.  One mother stayed on the playground with my son and her son and they played together.  I will always remember how wonderfully kind that was for her to do.

The four of us spent many hours together after school during that year.  Her husband was living in their native country, so she had lots of time to share with us.  We would take the boys to so many places - it was always fun!  My husband was working all the time so he didn't miss us at all...  I cried when she and her son moved back to be with the husband.  They wanted their son to live in their country and learn that language.  I caught her at a time when she needed company too, as we had met her just after her husband had left to work in the family business.

We have seen each other a handful of times since then.  Here, in Boston and Buffalo, and in their country two times!  I always feel like we just start up where were left off even though we have not done a good job of keeping in touch in between visits.

Her son is now a dentist working at the university where he did his training.

The last time I saw her was in 2015 at the beginning of my wonderful drive across the country with my Swedish friend. The first friend's son was starting dental school in Buffalo so we drove from Boston to her and stayed a few days.  We went to Niagara Falls, did a self-guided architectural walking tour of  Buffalo, the Teddy Roosevelt Inauguration House Museum, had Buffalo Wings, and ice cream and sponge candy at an old fashioned classic ice cream parlor (Fowler's?), (pretty sure we went to the Modern Art Museum).  Chatted, shared thoughts and feelings.  It was a great beginning of the driving trip.

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At Waldorf the kindergarteners and teachers make lunch together every day.  I found the recipe booklet while going thru a box so will write them down here so they are handy!  While typing I searched the web to be sure of the bread recipe and discovered that different schools have different recipes for their schools.  Makes sense, but I thought all these years the schools all did the same thing...

Monday - Violet Day - Rice Cereal

(For 25-30 children)

3 c sweet brown rice - cover with 1.5 inch water

Cook until tender (watch pot and stir often) The school had a heat disperser the grains didn't burn.

Sprinkle with gomasio (sesame salt) or sweeten with honey.

Tuesday - Red Day - Bread

1.  Sponge: Combine and set aside, 1/4 c water, 2 T yeast and 1/4 t maple syrup

2. Combine 1/4 c oil, 1/2 c maple syrup, 1/5 t salt and 2 c water

Add 1 & 2 together, add 1.5 c flour, stir 200 times and then let rest 5 - 10 min.  Add 4 c whole wheat flour (okay to sub 1/2 c oats for 1/2 c flour) Knead, add flour as needed.  Shape and place on oiled pan.  Bake in 325 degree oven for 20 min for rolls, 45 min for a loaf.

I'm not sure now if the kids only had bread on this day.  I'm remembering they all had baskets for their lunch and how I had to look for metal bowls and cups for him to use.  I made cloth napkins and a cover for the basket.  I still have the napkins and one of the baskets - now holding hand towels.  My favorite napkin was made with red and white checkers, but it had ants printed on it so they were crawling around.  Anyway, maybe these recipes are for a mid-morning or afternoon treat, not a full lunch.

Wednesday - Yellow Day - Apple-Millet Cereal

Serves 25-30 children

2.25 c millet

6 - 8 c water (or apple juice)

5 - 7 apples, cut up

2 t cinnamon

Cover with water, add more as needed.  Cook until tender - around 20 minutes.

Perhaps serve with maple syrup.

Thursday - Orange Day - Barley Soup

For 25-30 children

1 onion

3 carrots, chopped

3 c barley

1/2 c tamari

1 T parsley

1 T oregano

2 quarts water

Chop onion, saute in oil until soft.

Add remaining ingredients.

Cook until barley is tender.

This was our son's favorite.  A few times that year they asked me to have him bring in a few carrots or apples to use.

Friday - Green Day - Rye Cereal

6 c rye flakes

1.5 t salt

12 c water

Cook until tender. 

Serve with maple syrup and bananas or honey.

Note: 3 cups rye and 6 cups water for 11 to 12 children.


Birthday Cake

For our son's birthday the teacher made a cake and decorated it with beautiful orange nasturtium flowers they picked from their hillside.  I'd never had them before, they added a fresh and peppery taste to the cake. They must have had this cake many times during the year, but it felt special for us and our son to have it to celebrate his birthday.

Applesauce "Birthday" Cake

3.25 c whole wheat pastry flour

1.5 t baking soda

1.5 t cinnamon

3/4 c butter

1 c maple syrup 

1/2 c molasses or honey

1 egg

1.5 c applesauce

Combine dry ingredients.  Cut in the butter.  add rest of ingredients, Beat well.  Bake at 350 degrees for around 1 hour.

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Compared to our lives, there was a lot of religion in Waldorf, but we felt it wasn't a religious school. I'm looking over this verse and recipe booklet.  Ah well. It's good to be good to each other and ourselves. Here are a few poems/verses the kids recited. I don't remember them all, but do remember I thought it was sweet the way they added to the order of the day, the rituals, the community, and the memories.


Verse of Anticipation

When I have said my evening prayer, 

and my clothes are folded on the chair, 

when Mother switches out the light, 

I'll still be ___ years old tonight!  

But at the break of day, 

before the children rise and play, 

before the darkness turns to gold, 

Then I'll be ___ years old.


Birthday Verse

In heaven shines a golden star

An Angel lead me from afar

From heaven on high unto the earth

And brought me to my house of birth.


Birthday Song

We wish you a happy birthday

a joyous and celebrated birthday

To our friend _____

May you have a long, long life


Candle Lighting

I can light a candle

God can light a star

Both of them are helpful

Shining where they are


Candle Snuffing

Candlelight shining bright

Thank you for your loving light

Good night


Good-bye Verse

Our work, our play, our song

In us becomes a light

We carry it along

Until the stars shine thru the night

To God we bring it all

Answering his call.


Good-bye Song

Good-bye now, Good-bye now.

We leave you now 

And home we go.


Good-bye now, Good-bye now.

Good-bye to all of you.


It's time to go or we'll be late.

Let Martin lead us to the gate


Good-bye now, Good-bye now.

Good-bye to all of you.


Come Out and Play

Bright is the day

The birds are all singing

The flowers are gay.


Stretching up, oh, so high

Trying to reach the sky


Come Out and Play!


Bright is the day

The birds are all singing

The flowers are gay.


Wash Hands

Wash hands wash

The men have gone to plow.

Now's the time to wash your hands

So wash your hands now


Snack Blessing

Earth who gives to us this food,

Sun who makes it ripe and good,

Dear Earth, Dear Sun, by you we live

Our loving thanks to you we give

Amen

Join hands, join hands, join hands.

Blessings on our food.


Lunch Blessing

Before the flour, the mill

Before the mill, the grain

Before the grain, the earth, the sun, the rain

The beauty of God's will.

Join hands, join hands, join hands

Blessings on our food.


Morning Verse

To Earth I come to greet the light, to greet the Sun

The stones that rest

The plants that grow

The beasts that run


To greet all people who walk and work and will

Love God in all

Then God greets me, in all I do

And you and I and God are one.


Morning has come

Night is away

Rise with the sun

And welcome the day!


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There is more to remember about those Waldorf days, but I will save that for later.  Going to get ingredients for barley soup now!