Tuesday, February 14, 2017

Warm Winter (Conroe, TX)

We woke this morning to severe thunderstorm warnings while tornado warnings were south of us in the Houston area.  Other than a couple of freeze warnings and this one bad storm, we have had a very pleasant winter.
View of Lake Conroe from our dining room table.
Not bad too shabby, right?
So, where have I been lately?  Well, if I am not outside walking or watching cats, I have been very busy sewing and getting use to our new home.  I have been very bad about taking photos, so here are a few that I took with my phone recently.
These two photos were taken back in December.  Dan took me to a quaint little restaurant setup in an old house.  After lunch, we walked around the outside to view their yard art.
I took a lot more photos, but these two are my favorites especially the teapot man.
The cats have adjusted well to their new home.  Squirrel is starting to show his age.  He must be around 17 or 18 years old now.  Every once in awhile, he will act like a kitten and start running around, chasing bugs, jumping up on furniture, and howling then he goes back to acting his age again.
Max ~ Like dis!  See!
Max has become my yoga partner.  He is a big help.  Here he is showing me the Cat Down pose.
Dusty ~ Mine!  All mine!
Dusty loves the new scratch post.  He also loves the fact that he can lay on the sofa and hug the post.
And he really loves playing string with us.  He hints first thing in the morning, again around noon, just before bed, and...okay, just about every opportunity there is when we walk into the living room.  😻
Hitch ~ Come on!  No more photos!
Hitch is being his typical punk self.  He is still bugging the others, trying to sneak outside with no leash or taking himself for a walk.

On the Cutting Board
I finished three custom orders for three different customers!  They all sent in requests on the same day, so I decided to work on all three together.
I made this one for a customer after she sent me a photo of her Patriotic Shasta.   I might make more Red White & Blue Happy Campers.
This one is for a small Airstream with no side windows.
The last one is for a cute vintage trailer done all in pink and lavender.
I had started working on some new pillow covers for our motorhome.  We found that we will need a couple of more pillows for the dining area.
I'm also working on two quilts and two wall hangings.  So much to do!  So I better get back to the cutting board!
Happy Quilting!

Sunday, January 22, 2017

Visit to Fredericksburg (Columbus, TX)

The following photos are from December when our son was visiting us during his holiday vacation.  We wanted him to see our favorite German town in Texas.
We have visited Fredericksburg often over the years.  I have taken and posted a lot of photos of this town, so this time I decided to focus my lens on smaller unusual things that caught my eye.
Except for photos of the two story Christmas Pyramid which is my favorite German Christmas decoration.  

Looks like this truck is loaded and ready for Christmas!
This is the first time we have noticed this little courtyard.
Walking into the courtyard, I felt like we had returned to Europe...
..with statues, water fountains, and little shoppes.

Back out on the street - a bicycle ready for the holidays.  Notice the plant is still alive and green.  The weather has been crazy with a couple of warms days followed by close, if not below, freezing temps at night.  Apparently, it has been warm enough to keep this plant blooming.  I'm certainly happy that we decided to stay in Texas instead of returning to Oregon for the winter.
I found this Gallery's sign to be very unique.
The two steeples belong to St. Mary's Catholic Church.  The old steeple is in front of the new steeple in the background.

I know this is getting a little long...so just a few more street scenes, okay?

On The Cutting Board
I have been staying very busy.  I have been getting all sorts of new ideas from browsing the internet. (like I need more projects, right?)

I had to stop surfing the web, so I could finish my last custom order.  Thanks to this customer, I have received three more Happy Camper orders!  She did a shout out on "Glampers on the Loose" Facebook group.  I had joined the group after she had told me about some of the groups she followed.  I'm getting all sorts of new ideas from the photos they are posting!
I did manage to finish three more Happy Campers before the new orders came in.  I will try to list the ones below soon.

Back in November, I started working on a new baby quilt using a pattern from one of my old magazines.  I have used the fast sew and rotary cut method a few times over the years with no problems.  This one turned into a nightmare!  The measurements for the flying geese were so far off that the finished length was over an inch too wide.  I had already cut out all the pieces, thinking (or not thinking) that the pattern had been tested since it was published in a well-known quilt magazine.

After consulting the internet, trial and error on downsizing the flying geese, I finally got the correct size.  Very frustrating, but lesson learned - make one block BEFORE cutting up all the fabric.  I might  not be so lucky next time.  This time the measurements were too large...next time they might be too small.
Well, I need to get back to the custom orders.  I also have a request in for another Black Cat in the Pink quilt!
Happy Quilting!

Thursday, January 5, 2017

Good-bye 2016 Hello 2017 (Pipe Creek, TX)

I hope everyone had a nice time over the holidays.  I spent most of December being lazy and just getting use to our new home.  I managed to get a little organizing done with my stuff that I haven't pulled out for months.  During our move, I found quite a few things that I forgot that I had sitting in my storage bins.  Goodness, so many ideas, so little time!
Okay, a little catching up time....
We spent most of December near Waco, TX.  This time, we decided to visit The Magnolia Market in downtown Waco.  Both Dan and I enjoy watching the HGTV show the Fixer Upper with Chip and Joanna Gaines.  The houses they fix up are well done.  Chip makes sure the house has strong bones and good wiring.  Joanna does a wonderful job of keeping the character of the older homes while giving it a fresh modern look.
Inviting play area with swings, toys, and chairs
Have you seen the show?  We like it because there is no drama and yet it is entertaining to watch the two interact on the show.  We have lost count of how many animals Chip has adopted and how often Jo tells him no more pets!  We are amazed at their bottomless source of energy that never wears out.
Magnolia Market and Silos
Their love for each other, for their family, and for their community is so refreshing. As you can see from the photos, the Magnolia Market at the Silos is more than just a place to go shopping.  It is a gathering place for families and friends to enjoy the day and at night for concerts.
We had a choice of meals from several different food trucks along the perimeter.  The most popular food truck served only Mac and Cheese meals.  We had a vegetarian rice bowl from a different food truck.  I wanted to get one of the cupcakes from the bakery, but the line was out the door.  Of course, by the time I finished my rice bowl, I was too stuffed to eat a cupcake no matter how delicious they looked!
There is even a small garden area setup for us to walk around.  The Seed + Supply Magnolia Shop carried some cute little garden items.  It made me wish I had a garden room to decorate.
If you happen to be near Waco, stop by the Magnolia Market.  If you want a cupcake, I was told you need to get there early before the crowds show up.  Shopping inside the store wasn't too crowded.  It is not packed to the ceiling with merchandise.  It is understated and doesn't feel like another tourist trap.  Simple elegance just like Joanna Gaines.

Afterwards, we decided to walk a couple of blocks around the downtown area and came across the original Dr. Pepper factory.  We did not go through the Dr. Pepper Museum, but we did stop in for an ice cream in the cafe.
I don't know much about the building except that it was built in 1906 and this side was damaged by a category 5 tornado in 1953.  I find the building interesting especially the tower towards the back.
Before Christmas, we moved to Medina Lake near San Antonio.  Check out the two photos of Medina Lake!  The first time we visited this area, we could not see a spot of water and cattle were grazing towards the bottom of the valley.
Medina Lake New Years 2015
Today it is full due to all the rain Texas has received in the past two years.  I tried to get the exact same view using the hills in the background.  What an amazing difference!  We hope this will breath new life into the area and help bring back the little towns nearby.
Medina Lake today!
We were happy when our son Shaun joined us for the holidays.  We spent Christmas eve eating potluck with other campers at the family center and we showed him a couple of the local sights that I will post next time.  For most of the time, we just sat around enjoying the peace and quiet of the park.
I'm not sure who had a better time with the feedings - us or the deer.  We can tell who feeds the deer around their sites by all the deer hanging around.  We decided to feed them down by the lake and away from where we walk our cats.  When the deer get close to one of our cats, they start alerting with a hissing sound and stamping their hooves.  Neither the cat nor the deer back off, so we end up chasing off the deer to keep them from attacking.
The office and the local hardware store sell bags of corn so we know it is okay to feed the wildlife here.  Quite a success - the deer look very healthy!
On The Cutting Board
My shop stayed busy between November and December.  As a matter of fact, I need to get busy and refill my shop.  It is looking a little empty.  I have been working on a couple of things, but nothing close to being finished.
Recently, I had an inquiry about one of my first Happy Campers done in blue with a Welcome sign.  I told the customer that I could make another one. She sent me a photo of her retro trailer. Isn't it cute? She sounds like a very happy Happy Camper!  I plan to finish this one soon.

With the new year, I hope to get back on track and get things done!  I'm not getting any younger, you know!  😊
Happy Quilting!

Sunday, December 4, 2016

Settled In Our New Home (Bridgeport, TX)

I feel like I am living in a miniature condominium on wheels.  Our new home has better appliances and furniture.  A dream home for sure!  I wasn't so sure I would be happy to leave our old Bluebird with its quirks and its own unique characteristics.
Moving Day
It was strange and sad to watch our old Bus drive off, knowing I will not see it again. I know one thing - I do not want to go through a move like this again for a very very long time. The next move will have to be our last one - into a park model or a nursing home. 👵

Now, that I have had a little time to get to know our new home, I am quite happy with Dan's decision to buy this 2003 Foretravel.  It will be a very comfortable home for many years to come.

Well, would you like a tour of our new home?  Great!  We will start with the bedroom.
Slideout- Desk in bedroom
We have one small slideout in the bedroom with a desk set in it.  This desk sits a little high from the floor for cutting or sewing.  It comes up to just below my chest.  I have to raise my arms quite high to do anything on the surface, but it is perfect for using it for ironing or other close hand work that needs to be on a flat surface.  As you can see, I filled up the space below with more quilting supplies.  Once compartment holds our printer.  Excellent spot for it.  Now, I can start coping quilt paper blocks again without making Dan move!
Ceiling fan and plenty of overhead storage
We do not have as much space in the compartments below.  At first, I wasn't happy about losing all that storage,  Then I realized that now most of my supplies will be inside and I won't have to wait until morning or the rain to stop and the ground to dry so I can look for that one piece of fabric that was stored below.  Yep, every nook and cranny has been filled with fabric, supplies, and books.  
dark outside so it was hard to get enough light for photos
I just have to remember where I put everything....
Our bed is a little taller than the last one.  We worried that our old cat Squirrel would not be able to get on the bed at night, but he fooled us by climbing up the covers.  Not good for the covers...oh well, at least he is happy and not getting us up in the middle of the night to help him.
Bed is Cat-Approved
Our first night was bad with all the caterwauling all night long, but as you can see, they got use to their new home quite fast.  They all like the desk at night.  A great spot to watch for night critters.  I know because they all land on me in the middle of the night when they are done looking out the window.  Ooof! 😽
2 of 3 clothes closets and laundry
Our new bathroom is quite a bit bigger with 3 large clothes closets and a laundry closet as well.  I was able to fit quite a few of my quilt items in the bottom of this closet with our winter jackets.

I love the fact that I can now heat just the bathroom with the aqua hot heating from the floor registers.  So nice to have warm tootsies while brushing my teeth or getting ready for a shower.
The aqua hot heating runs throughout the motorhome.  We also have ceiling heating pumps vented throughout the motorhome so I can stay toasty warm all winter.
Skylight in shower
All the furniture is covered in microfiber leather-like fabric that is self-healing. It is warm to seat on and the cats don't seem to like the fabric for scratching...so far.

I was so surprised to see my pillows were a perfect match to the sofa.  The previous owner said the fabric color is called Salsa Red.  Perfect!  With this color scheme, I am able to keep my southwest decor which is good since I just made all those pillows.
Slideout has sofa and dining booth
The layout of the living space is like being back in a house. The front slideout includes the sofa and the dining booth.  I like having the two small windows that gives me a view of the front and back areas.  Actually, I like all our windows.  They are large and open wide giving us plenty of air and views of our surrounding area.  Right now, I can see the lake and watch the birds flying around in the bushes behind our site.  It makes for great entertainment during breakfast.
dining booth and back window
I tried out our dining area for sewing today.  It will be all right for small projects.  For larger projects, I'll have to bring in my folding table.
Dan has claimed the recliner as his favorite spot to sit while I find that I like the couch.  The furniture is more comfortable.  My feet touch the floor except when I sit in the passenger seat and the previous owner made a foot stool for his wife that he gave to me.  I do believe it is going to get a lot of use while we are traveling.  But wait!  There's more....the passenger seat also has its own foot rest that pops out.  I believe I can be quite comfortable with the foot rest out while working on some of my quilt projects with a cat in my lap!
Ekornes recliner
All the cats like the new recliner.  They have already had a couple of battles over who gets to sleep in it.  It is not unusual to see two of them sleeping together in the morning.
The kitchen has a nice design to it.  I can move around without being in Dan's way when he is sitting in the dining booth.  Notice my new refrigerator?  It is huge!  We are having a hard time filling it up, but that's okay.  It is nice to store food and be able to find it again without removing half the contents of the fridge.  We also have an Advantium oven.  We speed-baked croissants and baked potatoes for Thanksgiving.  Perfect!  It has been a long time since I have served toasted brown croissants.  I may never use my roaster oven again.
Advantium Oven
The kitchen counter will be my new cutting area and with the ironing set up in the back, I should be able to add a few extra steps to my Fitbit.
Well, I hope you enjoyed your tour of our new home.  We are still getting use to it.

On The Cutting Board
I did manage to finish embroidering Drummer Boy from the "A to Zzz Snowman" quilt pattern.
I hope to have a little more time for sewing and hand work during this month.
My shop has been busy, so I should get to work on some new mug rugs too.  And of course, I have more scrappy quilts to make.  Gosh, it is never ending!  A good thing for me, right?
Happy Quilting!

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