Wednesday, April 22, 2015
I cannot believe I can actually say in these days of packing and chaos that I finished the quilt I found in the back of the closet! This was the one I took to the place we can rent a Sweet 16 machine and do-it-yourself. Well, don't ever let me go near one of those things again, Friends Marilyn and Jan. What a mess. After a couple of evenings of picking out the machine stitching I used a variegated blue perle cotton and big 1/4 inch stitches and uneven spacing and quilted it by hand.
Now for sure all quilting is packed and off to storage. From now till we move I will spend my decompression time reading.
This week's books at school:
Saturday, April 18, 2015
Friday, April 17, 2015
My well used coaster says it all.
We sold our house, we bought a different house, and now it's time to pack up. It's been a long process and in anticipation of moving I've been purging and packing since last summer. Lots of purging. But that doesn't mean there isn't packing to do. Lots of packing.
I came to grips this morning and decided I have to just be honest with the next month and let something go. That means I have to pack up my quilt supplies and decide for the next few weeks there won't be any sewing - but just in case I am keeping some applique projects close by. But to be honest, I'm so exhausted at the end of the day I just want to lie on the couch and read a few pages. Sewing takes too much thinking. Even is the pieces are all cut and waiting. The blog posts, when they come, will probably not be about quilting.
Sigh. I have fallen in love with quilting with perle cottons. But into the box they go.
Thursday, April 16, 2015
We came home from wintering for ten weeks at my brother and sister-in-law’s and the very next day we had a showing and they turned out to be our buyer. As with any house sale there were offers and counter offers and wish lists but all being said and done we sold our home.
Then the real task began. We had to find a place to live. While in Grand Rapids for the winter I spent days and days and days on end driving neighborhoods, looking online for prices for those neighborhoods, noting how fast or slow things were moving. What we discovered was anything in our desired price point was selling faster than it could be seen. Absolutely no exaggeration when I say a house listed at breakfast was sold by lunch. A house listed at lunch was sold by supper.
We knew what we wanted – something smaller than this, something with a little nature to it, something not needing any more than a can of paint, good light, etc. In other words, take this house into your hands and squeeze it down to manageable size. After looking, viewing and one false start we believe we found it.
Unexpectedly, it’s 45 minutes from PH’s family, 20 minutes (I timed it today to make sure) from the northeast side of Grand Rapids, an hour closer to son and daughter-in-law (and grands) and around the corner and two blocks away from daughter and son-in-law (and girls.) That was a surprise! The house and property are connected to a series of National Parks that span 4,600 miles from New York state to the Dakotas. This house backs up to that property. Essentially the back yard is acres and acres and acres and acres of undeveloped nature.
We aren’t spring chickens anymore, we've evolved to becoming a stewing hen and a tough old rooster and just being in the process right now we both know we could not do this kind of a move in a very few more years. It goes without saying we will miss this house and the laughter that rang through it. We had such good times here. We made so many memories I can’t hardly look at the pictures without tearing up. We made it our own from scratch, we loved being here. And we hope that where we go from here the fun and laughter will follow, not because of a house, but because of the people in it.
To give myself a little perspective as I work through leaving here I bought myself a present. This beautiful book puts home into perspective. PH and I believe, even though we are leaving a beautiful building and the lakeshore, we are following our hearts.
Kindergarteners love anything improbable, exciting and full of action. When Dinosaurs Came with Everything was exactly that. It's an impossibly good luck day when a round of errands with mom means that everything is rewarded with a real live dinosaur at each stop. Donuts? Dinosaur on the side. Haircut? Yup. Shoes? yup. What to do with a backyard full of dinosaurs? Put them to work!
Tuesday, April 14, 2015
Under Magnolia by Frances Mayes
We know Frances Mayes best as the author of the book Under the Tuscan Sun, her memoir of finding a new life in Italy. But in Under Magnolia we meet the real Frances Mayes. Straight from the South you think you know and hear spoken about as something akin to another planet populated with a different species than you and I.
Frances takes us into her home as a child and keeps us there until she escapes that home and Fitzgerald, Georgia and everything it represents. She leaves. She leaves behind the gothic marriage of her parents, and of course the imprint on her brain as a result.
She takes us through her school years, her climbing, tussling, disrespectful, unladylike girlhood as she even then seemed to know she had to rebel and find her own way. Sometimes we know very young that things aren’t right and we need to push through those years to get on with our own life.
And always, guiding her with her hand on her back was the family maid, Willie Bell. She kept perspective for Frances, she kept her fed and clean and sometimes she kept her sane. And who told her, “You gon’ fly, little girl.” Oh, that we all have a Willie Bell at our keel.
If you enjoy reading Frances Mayes’ books, you will appreciate meeting her in person here.
I received this book for review from Blogging for Books