Saturday, August 27, 2016

Sorry To Be Leaving Blaine (Silver Creek, WA)

Since my last post, we have moved several times.  I hope to have another post soon of our other stops.  We settled in Silver Creek, WA on Saturday and have not had time to visit the surrounding area...yet.

In the meantime, I wanted to share more photos of the area around Blaine, WA.  We visited Lynden, WA several times.  It is a small town with Dutch influence showing up in the downtown area.
The buildings were quite interesting and this bakery....the best little pies ever!  I had a small blackberry pie that was overflowing with sweet berries.  Usually, the single helping pies have so much crust, I feel like I am playing hide-and-seek with the fruit.  No hunting for the fruit in this little pie!  I had to go back for another one before we left.
Below is a photo of a restaurant and hotel.  Just gorgeous!  And the hanging baskets of flowers were all along the street.  They were hugh!  They were so big that I (the vertically challenged) had to be careful not to walk into one and end up with a face full of flowers.
Love the welcome sign.  I should have got a better photo of that one.
I wish I had taken a photo of the Tangled Threads Quilt Shop.  Of course, the more interesting things to show were inside.  The displays were wonderful.  I ended up buying fabric I did not need, but I could not live without.  Hmm, I might have to make another "The Witch is in" wall hanging.
I found out that I missed another quilt shop called "Folktales".  You know what that means, right?  I'll have to go back!

Blackberries are in season and seem to be everywhere.  In the campgrounds, in the downtown areas, and even in a Blaine's city park which is where we were picking the ones below.  I was having a little bit of cereal with my blackberries every morning.  Yum!
We drove to Mt. Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest.  So many breath-taking views!  Wouldn't some rocking chairs be perfect for this porch?  I could sit here for hours rocking and watching the clouds float by.  
I can see why they called this area Heather Meadows.  The Heathers were blooming all over the valley in pinks and whites.
If I understood the information ranger, we were not seeing Mt. Baker from Heather Meadows, we were seeing Mt. Shuksan.  I'm not sure this is the right peak in the photo.
We were expecting it to be a little cooler since we were at a higher elevation.  It turned out to be a very warm day.  People were sledding in shorts and t-shirts.  Wandering around the snow with flip-flops.  Definitely a warm day.
One more place we visited before leaving Blaine was Fairhaven's downtown historical district in Bellingham.  Wednesday is Farmer's Market day in Fairhaven's Village Green, so the downtown area was very busy.  It was worth it to find a parking spot and to be able to walk around viewing the old, not to mention, very interesting architect.
We had lunch at the Colophon Cafe which is in the building on the left side in the photo below.  We sat close to this door and were able to watch people come and go.  More good food!  I had a vegetarian Greek salad and Dan had the Mexi Black Bean burger.  Such good flavors.  I have to confess that I have put on quite a few pounds with all the good food we keep finding in this area.
Fantastic murals!  They really blend in with their surroundings.  The first time I walked by the mural above, I only caught the guy standing at the window from the corner of my eye making me think he was really standing there until I turned my head.
It's too bad we were full from our lunch.  Next time, maybe we can stop here for a drink and people watch.
I would not mind living in this building with its outdoor roof garden.  I bet they have a great view of sunsets and the Bellingham Bay nearby.
Speaking of water, we took a short trail through blackberry bushes to the Taylor Dock.  A very unusual dock as it has seats and what looks like parking spots for bikes/strollers as you walk down towards the water.  But wait!  The dock doesn't end there....
..it curves around and ends in another area near a park.  We did not walk the full length.  We were getting very hungry by then and decided to turn back.  I probably should have done the walk to burn a few more calories before eating!  Next time I will know better. 
Okay, I better stop.  This is turning into quite a long post.
On The Cutting Board
Just a quick look before you go of what I have been working on the last few weeks.

I finally finished binding my Asian Sand Crane quilt.  I need to come up with a better title for it.  I got the photos prepped for Etsy, but I have not listed the quilt just yet.
I started hand quilting the True Lover's Knot. 
I'm keeping the quilting simple with in-the-ditch and echoing stitching.
As fast as this stitching is going, I might have this quilt done before the other one gets listed.
Happy Quilting!

Thursday, August 11, 2016

Trying To Get Caught UP (Monroe, WA)

We moved from Blaine to Monroe on Monday.  I am still trying to get caught up with all the photos I took while we were in La Conner and I still have the surrounding area of Blaine and Mt. Baker National Park to show you!

The following street photos are from Anacortes, WA.  I love the old fashioned clocks I saw while walking down the street.  This one was around the corner from the main street, but it still made quite a statement in its royal blue colors.
Of course, I had to add a photo of the many beautiful older buildings.
This cute little guy greets Gere-a-Deli customers at the door.  We did not eat there, but what I saw looked inviting to eat.

Now, this is what I call upcycling!  Instead of being a fire hydrant, it re-hydrates people and their dogs.
We took Shaun to Washington Park in Anacortes when he came up to visit us.  There is one road that loops around to different scenic views.  Some people walk, but on this day it was cold and a little dreary so we stayed with driving the loop.
This is a combination I do not see very often.  Large flowering gardens with a view of the Anacortes Marina.  You can barely see the mountains in the background.  What a view and such a relaxing walk to take after shopping at the Farmer's Market.
Not too far from Anacortes is the Deception Pass.  As a child, we crossed this bridge often to go visit family in the Seattle area while living in Oak Harbor.  I never grew tired of the view.
Being able to walk across the bridge is even better.  Well, as long as you do not have a problem with heights and traffic whizzing by.
I did not see any whales, but we did see one lone Seal fishing along the cliff sides.
I had to toss one in of Max enjoying the warm days of summer.  The weather was perfect for getting out for walks and exploring the area.
The cats, of course, wanted us to stay home so they could enjoy the sun as well. We did spend quite a bit of time just sitting outdoors while we were in Blaine, WA.  Between visiting with other full-timers and chasing wandering cats, I tried to get caught up on my reading, a little quilting, and......

On The Cutting Board
a little more embroidery work on my "A to Zzzz Snowman" blocks.  I'm up to "C"!  
Only 23 more letters to go.  Lucky for me, some of the letters are combined into one block, so I better get back to them!
Happy Quilting!

Wednesday, August 3, 2016

More Photos of La Conner (Blaine, WA)

I wanted to share more photos of La Conner.  We are in Blaine, WA and finally have decent WiFi for uploading photos.
We had to walk around town often to burn off the calories from all the delicious food we found to eat at the Calico Cupboard Cafe & Bakery. (sorry no photo)
Plus, this is a great place to window shop!  So many unusual art pieces from near and far.  I could have spent hours just looking in each shop.
Across the river is the Swinomish Indian Tribe Community.  They also own the land that our campground is located.
I just love a town that loved a strange looking dog so much that they have a statue of him and named the little square after him. 
Art work seems to be everywhere. In small squares and sidewalks....
on porches.....
and on old dock pilings
I fell in love with several old homes.  The wood work and paint colors are so inspiring!  I wish I could see the inside of the house in the photo below.
Okay, I had to have at least one photo of La Conner's famous bridge.
So, I will end my photo tour here for now.
On The Cutting Board
More Southwest Happy Campers in the making!  
I sort of let my needle get away from me on the peach one.  Lots of embroidery on that one!  Well, they are not going to get done if I stay on the computer, so back to the cutting board for more sewing!
Happy Quilting!

Saturday, July 30, 2016

Getting A Quilt Fix (Blaine, WA)

While we were in La Conner, I had to visit the La Conner Quilt & Textile Museum.  I'm not sure what I enjoy seeing again - the quilt exhibits or this grand old Victorian mansion built in 1891.
I was only allowed to take photos on the first floor which included the old kitchen and a gift/fabric shop.  So, here are a few photos that I was able to take.
The parlor was filled with a weaving exhibit.  Of course, I had to get a photo of the cat.
The rest of the first floor was filled with Colonial Revival Quilts.
Each quilt's story was told by its maker accompanied by a photo of an old quilt that inspired them.
The second and third floor were filled with fiber art and quilts from Japan by Sachiko Yoshida and students using silk from old kimonos.  The fabric does not look easy to work with, but the results are amazing.  Since I could not take a photo, I borrowed photo from Pinterest.  You can find more work by Sachiko Yoshida online.
Sachiko Yoshida Flowering:
from Pinterest
One more photo of the couple with a vision for this beautiful home we are still able to enjoy - Mr. and Mrs. Gaches.
Photos of the Gaches and their home
Across the street from the museum, there is a small butterfly garden open to the public.  I did a quick walk through since I had already spent quite a bit of time in the museum.
I am in love with the gardens in the northwest.  So lush and vibrant!  Interesting flower below.  Does anyone know the name of this one?
Walking down the stairs to the main street, I noticed the big cherries on this tree.  Not quite ripe for picking, but a great photo op for a colorful scenic view of La Conner.
On The Cutting Board
Sales have slowed down, so I am getting caught up on my UFOs.  Three more Happy Campers are ready for edging and layering.
I spent one beautiful day basting the Lover's Knot quilt.  It is now in the hoop and getting a little attention each evening.  So nice to be back to hand quilting in a hoop.
Happy Quilting!

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