Friday, April 29, 2016

First Mosquito

Tomorrow is the big day when I make the draw for the Island Batik fabric.  I will post the name on Monday.
Finished the quilt I had on the frame and made some adjustments to the frame itself.  The machine is a couple inches longer than the space between the two rods so I had to turn the base that the machine sits on.  I have a carpenter friend who could make large end pieces for the frame but I think I will just get used to everything first. 
Hubby had his physio appointment today and he continues to improve.  He was advised to not going walking outside though as the ground is to uneven.  She was saying that one patient dislodged her new hip twice so he really does have to be careful.  Being diligent in doing his exercises and strengthening the hip muscle will also help greatly.
I see by the traffic that our summer residents are starting to return.  Also killed a mosquito today so summer is on its way,

Thursday, April 28, 2016

Good for Gracie.

Gracie has almost finished the first quilt.  I had some problems earlier on today with thread breakage.  I changed the thread even though it had been working, Changed the needle even though it only had a couple hours use, threaded and rethreaded the machine.  Double checked the bobbin to see if it was installed properly.  Then checked the bobbin tension.  It was off a tiny bit.  Voila.  Off we go.
It has been a lovely early spring day.  It wasn't warm enough to go outside without a coat but the sun was shining.  Hubby and I went into the village to take care of a couple of things including a stop a the library so he could get some more books.  I took Heidi for a walk to the pond and through the bush later in the afternoon.  I just love walking through our back woods.  It is always so peaceful.
My sister has arrived from England and we will be getting together later.  It is so nice that both my sisters travel to Canada fairly frequently.
Just in case you know anyone in the market, I have a few left over items from my old frame set up to sell.  I no longer need the laser that is used for quilting pantographs, the speed controller and the upgraded (metal) Gracie carriage.  All these items can be seen on the Grace Company web site (  Let me know if you are interested.

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Practice Quilt Loaded

I got my first practice quilt loaded onto the frame to give Gracie a good workout.  I am feeling a bit nervous about starting but keep telling myself 'it is practice.  If I make a mistake, it doesn't matter.  I am only learning.'  Hard to convince myself though.  If it doesn't turn out to be too much of a disaster, it will be given to a friend.
I got my quilt room back to where I can see what I am doing again.  All the delivery paper, boxes, etc. was on the cutting table and I had to find somewhere to put them just in case anything had to be returned.
I got Skype set up on hubby's laptop so we can talk to the grandchildren.  We usually use the desktop but, as he hasn't fully recovered from his operation yet, it is easier if he sits on a proper chair.
My Island Batik fabric draw is coming to a close.  April 30th is the last day for you to enter.  Just add a comment to my blog (this one will do) and be sure to add your name.  Good luck

Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Welcome to Gracie.

This is a picture of the new member of our family.  Her name is Gracie and she is sleek, stylish and surprisingly strong.  She is now comfortable in her new home on my frame and I have all the parts installed except for the rear handles and the ruler table.  The tension only needed a little adjustment and she sewed like a dream on my test sandwich.  I thought I would have problem with installing the stitch control and adjusting to using it but, after I figured out something that was designated with a list of letters and numbers was actually a screw, it went together easily.
I bought the machine from Qnique Quilter ( in Alberta and am very pleased with the service I received.  Susan was knowledgeable, friendly and efficient.  My order was sent right away and arrived in perfect condition.
I am looking forward to getting to know Gracie better in the coming days and really enjoying the quilting I am going to be able to do in all that additional space.

Thursday, April 21, 2016

Life is Good

There is something very special about getting together with someone who has known you a long time.  Carol and I have been friends for over 40 years and she has seen me at my worst and helped me survive my difficult years.  I am pleased that she is now able to see me enjoying a wonderful life with an even more wonderful husband.  We aren't able to get together often-a few times a year but it is always special when we do.
Today, we met for lunch and chatted about this, that and nothing for about an hour before returning to our respective homes.  I came back feeling more rested than I have for a number of weeks.
I have another friend who I have known for a few years longer than Carol.  I don't see her very often either although we do talk on the phone regularly.  She is another person who has been there for me.
I am very fortunate in my friends and many of them have been part of my life for decades.  I also have newer ones like those I have made since moving here to the back woods.  I know they will continue to be important to me for many years no matter if we all stay in the same area or not.
Hubby continues to get better by leaps and bounds-not literally but certainly figuratively.  He filtered and bottled our maple syrup today while I was out.  After I got home, he had his first shower since the operation. 
So, life is good.

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Maple Syrup Bounty

It is funny how things work out.  I had been feeling disappointed (and a bit pouty) at not being able to go to a much anticipated quilt retreat this weekend.  Hubby's limitations made it impossible to leave him alone so I knew I was making the right decision but was still not happy.  Last night, I got a phone call from my son saying he was in the hospital with pneumonia in one lung and possibly another problem.  I can't be there unless there was an emergency but by being at home I can get there quickly.
Prayers for his recovery as well as peace and comfort for my daughter in law would be appreciated.
Our friends have spent another day here boiling sap and it looks as though we are going to have a good amount.  Hubby thought we wouldn't have any this year.  I am so thankful to these two men for their help. We will be giving them some of the syrup but that isn't much of a thank you for all their work.

There is still lots of time to enter my fabric draw.  Leave a comment at the end of this blog or on my ArkAngel Creations Facebook page.


Tuesday, April 19, 2016

Red Rain Boots

This is my latest creation using Island Batik fabrics.  It is called "Red Rain Boots".  She is supposed to be standing in a puddle but it looks like a rock.  Oh, well.  It is what it is.
Have you entered my draw to win some beautiful Island Batik fabrics?  Contest ends on Apr. 30th and all you have to do is leave a comment on my blog or Facebook page:

I couldn't seem to get going today I did a bit of this and a bit of that but not a great deal of anything.  We still have two of our friends doing the maple syrup and we are getting more than we thought we would. The weather is lovely and sunny again today and I just want to be outside.  This is probably why I don't have any real desire to do anything.

Friday, April 15, 2016

Win Some Beautiful Island Batik Fabric

As you know, I was one of the lucky quilters to have been chosen as an Island Batik Ambassador.  I love these fabrics with their vibrant colours and versatile patterns. 
I want you to have a chance to enjoy them as well so I am holding a contest.  All you have to do to enter  is to leave a comment on my blog or Facebook page telling me how you would use the fabric.
Contest will run from April 17th until April 30th.  If you are the winner, I will contact you for your mailing information.
To check out what you might win, go to
Good luck and please share this post.

Thursday, April 14, 2016

Another Long Day

Another exhausting day.  We went north to the hospital where hubby had his operation so he could see the surgeon and have the staples removed.  I got him into the van and was getting ready to move and the parking brake locked.  Unload van, reload into the car and off we went.  We made it with 15 minutes to spare and then waited an hour and a half for the appointment.  It was just after 4 when we got home so it was another long day.  Tomorrow is a physio appointment.  A friend is coming over to look at the van as it is so much more comfortable for hubby but the car is better than walking 10 miles!
I may get some quilting done tomorrow.

Wednesday, April 13, 2016

Spring Memories

I left the house this morning shortly after ten, got home around 3 and only accomplished two things.  The Burk's Falls Arts and Craft Centre meeting was in the morning (I am publicity and promotions and vice-president) and after that I went to Huntsville to grocery shop. By the time I got home and put everything away, it was time to get supper.  Normally, hubby would help with all that but he isn't able to do anything but offer encouragement and appreciation right now.
Tomorrow, we are going to see his surgeon and will, hopefully, get an update on his progress and how much more he can add to his activities.  Our only concern is the swelling in his foot.  Other than that, he seems to be doing really well.
No quilting today and probably none tomorrow either.  It is so unusual for me to be spending so little time in the studio but, as I have said before, hubby comes first.
It was a lovely warm day here in the back woods.  I even put the air condition on for a bit on the trip home just to cool down a little.  I wore my winter coat when I went out and could have done with something lighter.
Someone came to visit hubby while I was out so he could let out our little dog.  He also did chicken and wood duties so I didn't have to do them when I came home.  We continue to be blessed by the help we are receiving.
I have been trying to find time to start some of my seeds indoors but it doesn't seem to be happening.  Maybe on the weekend.  Maybe.
Hope spring is showing signs of arriving in your corner of the world.  Of course, in England and many other areas, it has been around for quite a while now. One of my favourite memories is of the birthday card I would receive from my mother early in April.  It always had a pressed flower from her garden.  As my yard was usually deep in snow, it was a lovely reminder of things to come.

Tuesday, April 12, 2016

Moving Forward

It is marginally less hectic at our house.  I did get to quilt group for a few hours yesterday but had to get home before the dog needed to go out.  I cut some of the squares I will need for my granddaughter's quilt.  Today I put the sections together to make the first block.  There is no rush on getting this done so I have put aside for now and started working on the Block of the Day again.  I was almost at the point of giving up but one of the ladies in our local quilt group is further behind that I am and she is plugging away so I decided to continue.
One of the men from church came over today and carried two large containers of water out for the chickens so I only have to bale it out.  He also brought in some wood which is another big help.  Another of the men made a base for the big easy chair so my husband can use it now instead of an uncomfortable lawn chair and still have is leg at the correct angle.
We are off to the surgeon on Thurs. and he hopes he will get the go ahead to just use a cane rather than the walker. He is doing quite well and has started getting some of his own meals provided I have what is needed on the top shelf of the fridge.
Our temperatures are gradually heating up.  I really need to get some tomato seedlings started.  Better put that on my to-do list.

Wednesday, April 6, 2016

Wing Walking

I was looking at mid arm web sites today.  I have been wanting to get a machine with a bigger throat space for my frame and had narrowed it down to two models.  I wanted up to 16" of space (my current frame will handle that), needle up/down, speed control, stitch regulator and not need me to mortgage the house to purchase it. 
I have finally settled on Qnique made by the Grace Company.  I already have their frame so I know the machine will work on it.  There is a Canadian distributor ( and they have given me a good price so this is the one I will get.  I am going to add a few accessories: ruler base and rear handles.  I have been offered a discount on them as well so am pleased with the overall deal.
I will be placing the order in a week or so and am trying to not get overly excited in case something happens that I can't get it.
My quilting today consisted of cutting fabric for the border sections of the 365 challenge.  I hope to get them sewn together tomorrow.  I am beginning to feel as though I am never going to catch up but my schedule is easing a bit here so I may yet.
Saw the oddest sight today.  One of the little birds that had been eating the seeds that had fallen to the ground started using its wings to walk along the snow.  It got to the base of a shrub and burrowed into the snow.  I have never seen that before.

Tuesday, April 5, 2016

Two at a Time

Our weather has been lovely and sunny the past few days and I have been enjoying walking through the bush with wee Heidi.  We had an exciting experience yesterday.  We were on the return trip when my eye was caught by something standing just a few feet away.  I was a large doe.  It stood there looking at us, it's huge ears twitching.  I stopped where I was and Heidi sat quietly beside me.  After a few, marvellous moments the deer bounded away and the dog barked.  I was surprised that she hadn't kicked up a fuss before that as she has a strong hunting instinct.
We have had quite a few deer around the property the past few days.  All of them look nice and healthy so I guess it was a good winter for them.
I loaded two quilts onto my frame on the weekend and am getting them done.  Yes, I did say two.  They are baby quilts and not very big so I decided to see if I could do both at once.  I placed the backing and batting onto the frame as usual except they were large enough for both quilts.  Then I sewed the tops together using a narrow strip between them.  They were then treated as one top, added to the frame and quilted.

I am quilting right across both using a cream thread and a loose meandering stitch.  The dark yellow is the joining strip.

Friday, April 1, 2016

Moving Forward

Another busy day but I think we are starting to get into a routine of what has to be done and when.  A friend from church came over and did a few of the heavier chores which was a big help.  I am going to need to not try to do everything.  My main job is to see hubby gets what he needs to get better.
I am managing to get at least one block of quilting done each day so am staying, almost, current with the daily block challenge.
I have a to do list and the things on it are also almost done.  I do have those crib quilts that need to get in the frame so will put that on the top of the list for tomorrow
I also want to take a photo of some of the blocks I have been doing to show you the different methods the challenge designer is using.
The latest issue of the Quilt Pattern Magazine arrived in my in box today and I have printed a pattern from it that I would like to try soon. It is called Serape Quilt designed by Nancy Noah.  The quilt looks like the colourful blankets that are often used as part of Latin American d├ęcor or draped over someone's shoulder.  I think it will be fun to do and would make a lovely housewarming gift for someone.
Have a nice weekend.  We are still getting the odd snow flurry but the temperatures are definitely warmer.