October has been a great month for being outside which means I have not done tons of quilting. However there will be plenty of time when the rainy, gray weather begins. Ray and I have done lots of hikes around the area, picked berries, spent a week with his mom – so many fun days. Let’s go through it!
Ray’s mom had not been up here since last fall so it was a treat to spend time with her. She is a very easy houseguest. I had gotten my Covid vaccine a day or two before she came and it knocked me down pretty hard. So for the first couple of days she and Ray hung out together and when I felt better I joined in. (I don’t know why that vaccine was so hard on me – did any of you react strongly to this one??) My kids all came for a bbq over the weekend which was fantastic.
We went to a local nursery that is a favorite of Ray’s and mine. Michele bought me a Japanese Maple tree for the front yard as birthday gift. While we wandered around we came across this wooden carved statue of Little Red Riding Hood and the Big Bad Wolf. Look closely at all of the detail as this is just amazing. It is all carved from ONE tree trunk. We inspected it for a long while; it was incredibly impressive work. Red Riding Hood’s facial expression looks a little strange but otherwise, amazing!!!
So many of you have asked about my dad’s health. You are all really thoughtful!! I want to show you picture proof of his improved health. Steroids can be magical. Fortunately, he isn’t experiencing any negative side effects from taking them daily. It seems like he will need them for months to come. But the doctors are following him closely and monitoring his health while he is on this regimen.
Last May I started adding a bit of a jog to my walks. In June I began running and soon was able to run three miles. Not fast, mind you, but I could run the distance. Since then, I have done two races with Ian, my youngest son. He loves to run and is really quick. For this race on October 15th (celebrating Ian’s 33rd birthday) he did the 10K and I did the 5K. He ran his best time so far for for his 10K and took 3rd in his age group. I had hoped for a better time but for whatever reason, this run was a struggle for me. (I think it had to do with my blood sugar and the food I ate before the race.) Anyway I ran it but was a bit slower than the first race I did in August. I also took 3rd in my age group but many of the women in my age group choose to walk the race so this isn’t a huge deal. But I am enjoying the running I am doing and try to do a three mile run at least twice a week.
While this isn’t an award winning photo, it shows the size of the huckleberries my husband has been picking. I haven’t lived where these grow wild prior to now. Last year we were just too busy getting settled to notice them. But this year! Ray has picked so many of them. He spends quite a while cleaning them because they are tiny!! Getting those little stems cleared out is not a fast task. But yum. He has made huckleberry jam and a batch of huckleberry muffins so far. There is a quart of berries in the freezer waiting for his next inspiration. I do enjoy having a husband who is comfortable in the kitchen.
Check out these quilting rulers!! I treated myself to two sets of Bernina quilt rulers as well as a ruler foot. When Sophia was here in September we talked about how much fun she has using rulers to quilt with. I have thought of these now and then but couldn’t get it in my head that it was doable. Free motion quilting is already fairly awkward. To add a ruler to the mix when moving the fabric around?? But guess what? It is so fun. The rulers have a layer of thin adhesive (or some sort of gummy substance) on one side of them so they do not slide. I have been looking at loads of YouTube videos and tutorials on the Bernina site.
I haven’t used them on actual projects yet. So far, I am just playing with them. It is super fun and I can see using them on something real fairly soon. Also, for those of you who are frugal like me, Bernina presser feet and accessories are super pricey. I am a fan of watching EBay. The foot I bought used for half of the retail price. The ruler kits arrived in unopened, original packaging so were never used. They were also half of retail price. This hobby is rather expensive so saving a few bucks where I can is helpful. It takes some patience to watch for items that you specifically want or need but I think it is worth it.
Looking ahead at the week, I am hoping to spend a bit of time in the sewing room. However, on Saturday my Bernina started acting up while I was quilting a lap quilt (see above) that I am anxious to finish because it is a gift for a friend. Why fail me now??? The timing is not good here. But it seems to be something to do with the hook (behind or under the bobbin area). I have cleaned and oiled, threaded and re-threaded, changed out needles, rewound the bobbin about 87 times. What else can I do??? Ray looked at it for a while but couldn’t find anything either. I don’t want to take it in because it takes so darn long to get it back, it is probably something simple and it will be a $250 outlay. How frustrating! If anyone has ideas as to why the upper thread is binding up below after just a few stitches, please leave a comment. Anywho….. If I can get the Bernina 570 back on track, I will finish the lap quilt.
At the moment, I have my little back-up machine set up. I used it to make a pair of cozy joggers yesterday but I can’t finish the quilt with it. The little machine is actually quite a work horse and is fine for piecing and making clothing.
Have a lovely week everyone. Wish me luck in figuring out my silly sewing machine mystery!!
I will leave you with this cute picture of the girls ‘rowing a boat’ at the pumpkin patch over the weekend. They always make me smile.