Thursday, April 19, 2007

Here's What's Happening in Exeter...

Well, for one thing, there's QUILTING going on, at last. Yesterday I started machine-quilting the antique remake, but as promised, no pics till it's done. May I just say that the Bernina 440QE is a fabulous machine. Not using the BSR for this quilt, but the diagonal quilting looks wonderful and I'm totally in love with this machine.

In other news, I've knit my first sock-and-a-third. Used Grumperina's Jaywalker pattern from the net, and it's been really fun, though a bit daunting with those teeny-tiny (US Size 1!) needles. I'll make more socks, I'm sure, and I have some gorgeous Jo Sharp tweed yarn that's hankering to be a sweater, at some point.

And here's what things are looking like in Exeter, these days. As you can see, autumn is in full dress, and the colors are gorgeous. When we go back to California in a couple of weeks, we'll have full spring there, so what's not to like?!

And on a sad note, the six steers went off to market on Tuesday. I took this pic through the slats of the truck once they were loaded. DH got splattered with steer bleep shortly after this pic was taken...after he'd spent 3 hours chasing the one escapee up and down the paddocks till he got him penned! Turns out this one steer was actually an intact bull! So glad I didn't know that when we were strolling through the paddocks!

And that's the news of the day from Exeter.

Thursday, April 12, 2007

In Memoriam

My mother passed away last night in California, after a long struggle with Alzheimer's, at age 86. She had been living in a very caring residential care facility for the past few years, following a stroke, and after suffering a second stroke a couple of weeks ago, she finally has found release from her suffering and is at peace.

She lived a long and interesting life. Born in the Texas Panhandle in February of 1921, the youngest of 10 children, she and her older sister hitchhiked to California during the Great Depression to live with relatives there, as it was too difficult for her own mother to take care of all 10 children and give them the help they needed to make a good start in life. They arrived safely in California, where she lived for the rest of her life.

She was not a quilter, but did beautiful knitting and crochet. She loved to garden, and enjoyed a succession of lovely cats. I like to think of her with a cat or two on her lap, enjoying the warmth and fluffiness of their coats, and the comfort they brought to her.

Here's a picture taken early in her illness, with a little "knee quilt" I made for her to keep them warm after her knee replacement surgery.

Rest well, Mom. Tracy, Sheri and I will miss you sorely.

Sunday, April 08, 2007

Hello? Hello?

Well, it's been a L-O-O-O-O-N-G time since I've posted, but I'm back at last. Dunno, I've just been in a real funk lately. Finally beginning to see the light of day. Feels good to be back.

Haven't done a lot of quilting yet, but as you see to the left, I finally got the largest center section layered and pinned together. I stalled out when I realized I need to learn how to put on the walking foot attachment on the new machine. That, plus there's company arriving this week, meaning I had to clean up the quilting studio/guest room to allow a place for them to sleep.

So, quilting is on hold for a week. Still, it feels good to be nearing the end of this project. And I promise, no more pics of this quilt until its at the binding stage! You must all be as tired of it as I am!

Thought you'd enjoy this pic DH took this is really changing here now, and autumn in Exeter looks like this...sometimes. Very changeable, so you might have three days worth of weather in just a couple of hours here. Already, the fog has burned off and we've got scattered clouds with a fair bit of sun.

And the next pic gives even more a a glimpse of the foggy patches at the bottom of our lower paddock. Pretty, huh?

And here's an interesting pic of the strange mushrooms growing in our upper paddock. Don't they look like the creature from the Blue Lagoon?

I started my first pair of socks in about 40 years this week. Using five eensy double-pointed needles. Yikes! Fun, but I feel like I'm all thumbs. It's a portable project, though, and with company coming I need something to work on that's manageable.

We're off to Sydney to pick up our guests today, climbing Sydney Harbour Bridge tomorrow (another big yikes!), back home with them for a couple of days, out to Canberra Friday/Saturday, and taking our friends to the airport for their flight to Hayman Island on Sunday. Wish we were going along on THAT little jaunt!

Anyhoo, sorry for the long silence. I hope to be a more faithful poster in coming weeks...