Ooooooo Mom…

On Sunday we are heading up to the cottage for 3 weeks so I wanted to give a lot of crafty inspiration before I signed off blogging for 3 weeks (no Internet at the cottage).

Sooooooooo my mom blames me for her somewhat recent move into the world of quilting. She would normally be found knitting in the evening but now she has a sewing workshop set up in the dining room. I think she’s going to turn a spare bedroom into a proper sewing room soon! I didn’t think getting into another creative outlet was such a bad thing but as you can see her stash grows, always in a very organized fashion of course…

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She was been going gang busters on different tops and my summer presence has been inspiration to get going on the backs and making the quilt sandwiches with the batting. We got these 2 ready for quilting the other day…presents for babies…

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And it’s back…

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And…

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Now you decide, she’s gone sewing crazy or just really enjoying making quilts…these are the other tops that are done and waiting to be sandwiched…

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This the top with her gorgeous liberty fabric…

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This is a wonderful sampler top that mom started awhile ago when she was taking a set of lessons. What a great way to learn some different techniques. I’m doing the same one but with retro Christmas fabrics. It’s very traditional but beautiful depending on the fabrics chosen…

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This is a neat top for a picnic quilt. Ha ha I finally caught mom in a pic. She’s cutting the cute bandana fabric for the back. Can you spy the ladybug fabric amongst the red…

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I saved my favourites for last. The first is for a queen bed that she will take to a long arm quilter. It’s the beautiful Anna Maria Horner fabric. The colours are stunning. I love the simple modern squares. I can’t wait to do one myself. The second is for their king sized bed. She’s had this fabric awhile now and I’m so happy to see it come together. It’s the Trapezoid pattern from Johanna Masko. I did one of these in a smaller size for 2 friends years ago. Stunning!…

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Oh and the fun doesn’t stop with finished tops. She’s already on to an adorable but scary Halloween quilt. Ultimately, she wants to have a quilt for each season…work in progress…

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I think mom is amazing even if she does blame me for starting quilting because she hated the idea of collecting fabric but come on right! Some fabric is just too beautiful to resist. I think you can see she’s really given in now. She also totally blames online shopping for fabric and the ease of paying with Pay Pal!!! There are truly some delicious fabrics out there so get sewing!

Stayed tuned in mid August when I return. Thank you for reading and keeping up with my adventures!

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Lady Fia

I’m sorry I did take pictures of Lord Isaac’s quilt but they came out too dark and you can’t really see the quilt so I’ll get more today…see…

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Isn’t he dreamy. I can’t wait for a cuddle this afternoon.

Lady Fia is pretty good with her baby “brudder” but as you can see she can’t wait to get out the door for a day out with her Aunty “Sarwah” in her new party dress from England. She’s perfect!!!…

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At home…

It feels very nice to be home and I have been doing a lot of visiting. HOWEVER… I just talked to John, who is still in England, and he said they are having a heat wave! Really, seriously, the day I leave the sun decides to shine…brutal is all I can say! Oh well!

Stay tuned for Lord Isaac’s Jubilee quilt but before I show you that I forgot to show the quilts that I found in Roland’s house in France…

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Apparently, he got 2 of these at the local market for 25 Euros. This makes me think they were certainly not hand done but I still really love the idea of the quilting pattern. I love how the lines are quilted so that they form little squares. When the quilt is lengthways on the bed they actually appear as diamonds. I think it’s really simple, modern and pretty. I also really like how around the edges are just a few rows of straight lines. They also reminded me how fresh and clean a solid white background can be. Also…what a neat idea to use just different alternating striped material with white blocks. I like!

No Time to Quilt

Coming back to the UK wasn’t too bad because my copy of Elizabeth Hartman’s new book “Modern Patch Work” was ready to be picked up at the post office.

I really liked her first book, very inspiring…

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I haven’t had a chance to really look at the second book yet but I’ve taken a few pics of things that have caught my eye so far…

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I particularly like how at the end of a pattern she shows different colour/fabric options. It helps to get the creative juices flowing…

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Hmmmm, I have all summer to think about fabric for these projects because I leave for Canada on Sunday until the end of August. I will spend 3 weeks at a cottage in Georgian Bay enjoying family, swimming, the sun and lots of reading! I can’t wait. I will try to make a few posts before and after we go but once there it’s all about no electronics!

Au Revoir France!

John and I were very sad to leave the beautiful and relaxing area of south west France. We went for a last bike ride in the sunflowers…

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Look I found my new holiday home that is being gorgeously renovated for us!…in my dreams…

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Back in the chilly UK rain! Actually, it was slightly sunny when we got back, smile.

Sunflowers and Lunch

After the excitement of the Tour we took it easy yesterday and went for a bike ride to have lunch in a very pretty village about 20km away. It was stunning. There were sunflower fields everywhere. See if you can spot us!…

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It’s nice to feel that you have earned your feed! We ate on a patio over looking another church stop on this pilgrimage walking route…

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And again aren’t the shutters perfect!…

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We finished the day with a cheese crepe and a chocolate banana and cream one for dessert. It is so relaxing in the south west of France. It is peak summer season but hardly any people about, perfect!

It’s my birthday today so we are going for a swim and to a nice pizza places for dinner! Happy birthday to me…having the sun out is present enough!

Vive le Tour de France

Years ago I lived in Ottawa and fell in love with how they closed some of the roads on a Sunday in the summer to allow cyclist etc. to use them freely. I saw many “pro-looking” Québécois cyclists take to the road and thought with my bad knees from running that that was the sport for me. I loved the idea of going fast and farther on the roads than a traditional mountain bike would allow. Unfortunately, I quickly learned that a good bike was the price of a small car so instead got more road like tires for my little red Gary Fischer mountain bike. Not the same! But I wasn’t to fear because years later while working at my first school in Cambridge I met a cycling enthusiast teacher friend named Kari who helped to fuel my old inspirations. She helped me to learn about the components of a road bike and what to look for when purchasing. I believe it was after one of John’s bonuses that I worked my magic and was able to convince him to buy us both bikes at a good entry level to the sport. (Soon enough he was into it as much or more than me and began riding to work!) We began watching the Tour de France on t.v. and got right into it. It is extremely exciting and you quickly pick a favourite to root for. You also get to see and learn a lot about the French countryside from the helicopter coverage. The long time commentators Paul Sherwen and Phill Liggett are wonderful to listen to and make any new comer to the sport feel welcomed and quickly knowledgable. It’s still on so give one stage a go! When I knew we were moving to the U.K. I immediately thought great, now we can go and watch the Tour. John added it to the long list of things I had already said I wanted to see, lol! My birthday is tomorrow and my present was to make sure we saw the Tour pass by. We went yesterday and it was better than expected. It was a quick pass by but we went to a lovely town called Auch were there was lots of Tour atmosphere. It was a comfortable and relaxed atmosphere which I wasn’t expecting. At what other sporting event can you A) get in free and B) sit at a cafe in the sunshine and drink coffee while waiting for it to pass!…

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We did walk and find a nice stone wall to sit and watch from, just above street level. In our magazine it said that the “caravan” would come through at 1:00. We weren’t sure what to expect. It turned out to be a wonderful parade from all the sponsors who were all throwing out free stuff. I got a little polka dot jersey key chain!…

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Here are some parade pictures…

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Then it all got really exciting because the red car came through which is the official car at the front of the race and the t.v. helicopters came right over head…

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The small break away came through first…

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And then the main peloton came through. They were quite stretched out in a line but I imagine going through a town can be dangerous and it looked safer on the narrow roads lined with fans to space out a bit! Below are a few of the shots of the riders, of course not as large as life as on t.v. but still amazing to see such incredible athletes. Take a close look at the picture with the rider in the yellow jersey. That is the leader of the race in the maillot jeune, British rider Bradley Wiggens. They went by so fast that I didn’t see last year’s winner Cadel Evans or my favourite sprinter Brit, Mark Cavendish but I think John did. (My favourite rider Andy Schleck is out with injury and didn’t start the race. The Canadian, Ryder Hesjedal got injured in the first few days of the race and had to abandon, boo.)…

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IT WAS SOOOOOOOO EXCITING!!!!!

After they passed by that was it and we walked around this beautiful town a bit. It truly felt and looked how I imagine France in my head!…

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After we drove back towards Roland’s house and stopped for a coffee in the lovely town of Condom, yes have a wee giggle! Apparently, Dartagnan, one of the 3 musketeers, came from this area so there was a modern statue installation, a bit tacky Roland thought but I loved it!…

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The statues are at the foot of a famous church. There is a pilgrimage route in this area of France and we saw many walkers at this church as one of their stops. They all had shells hanging off their bags for some reason?…

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A full day! Off for a bike ride and lunch now!