A Pieceful Life

A Pieceful Life

Welcome

I'm so glad that you stopped by, and hope that you enjoy your visit. Here you will find pieces of my life - quilting, cross-stitch, family, travel, friends.
My name is Peg - I am a 60ish wife, mother, daughter, sister, aunt, cousin, friend - and if we're not already related or friends, hope to become your friend too.
We live in the eastern end of the beautiful Fraser Valley, about 1.5 hours east of Vancouver, BC. Empty nesters, we have one son living just a few minutes away, our other son and daughter live in Alberta.
Comments are always welcome, always read - and answered if need be. Feel free to share, I love hearing from all my cyber-space friends.
Please do check out some of the links in my side-bar - you'll find other bloggers and fabulous people to visit.

Friday, September 19, 2014

Best Tip Ever

This was posted on Facebook by Quilted Connections Magazine:

Keep your end tables full of needlework and quilting so that you don’t have to dust them.

Works in my house!!!

Although I do have to confess that I’m a bit of a neat freak, so things are usually piled at least in some sort of order – but anything to avoid dusting!

Happy projects!                        Blessings, Peg

Monday, September 15, 2014

Sewing for Fun

When we got back from our trip, my sewing machine was ready and waiting to be picked up from the LQS where it had gone for its annual tune-up.  I could hardly wait to get back to creating.

First task was to make a cover/stand for the new iPad that our kids had given us:DSCN1074DSCN1072

The pattern is by the Inspired Wren, free on Craftsy.  I did make some changes – instead of a button, I put in an elastic loop on the flap.  Then I made the end of the flap narrower, and added a couple of pieces of Velcro to it and on the front of the cover, so that when the iPad is propped up, the flap angle won’t slip.

Then I started to tackle my scraps bin.  I tend to cut scraps into 2 1/2” strips, which will lend to 2 1/2” squares for future projects.  This seems to be the most common size of strips and squares that I use. 

First project up, a Jelly Roll 1600, quilt top done in just a few hours:002

Now I have strips and other bits laid out, trying to decide what I want to do next:001

When we were cleaning out the truck after our trip and before lending it to DS-K for use in getting his house cleaned up, I came across a bag that didn’t look familiar.  Grizz looked at it and said he had no idea what was in it, and then we checked it out.  Well, it was a Christmas gift for me that he had bought when we were in Sisters, OR a couple of months ago.  He’d tucked it away, and then completely forgot about it.  So, for the winter ahead, I have something to keep me occupied for a few days anyway:DSCN1071

Looking forward to that one!

Happy sewing and quilting                                 Blessings, Peg

Sunday, September 14, 2014

It’s Been Quite a Week

We’ve been home for a little over a week now, and it’s just flown by!

We started and ended the week helping our DS-K clean up his new home.   What a job!  But it’s clean enough now that he can actually live there, but the cleaning and renos and redecorating will be continuing.  Here’s a picture of behind the fridge before we cleaned it:DSCN1052

K’s mother-in-law actually took charge of the kitchen, and it looks fabulous now!

DDIL-M is away at school,so she is missing out on all the FUN!

So, at the end of the week – carpets are all out, ceilings are almost all painted, floors are vacuumed and washed, kitchen and bathrooms are clean, drains are almost all running freely, lawn is mowed, garbage has been removed, several windows are clean so that we can actually see through them, the small bedroom that K will use temporarily has been painted.  Lots and lots more to do yet – painting will continue, the furnace and water heater will be replaced this week, some windows need to be replaced this week.  But K actually slept in the house for the first time last night!  Welcome home bud!

During the week, Grizz and I tackled a few jobs around the house that were waiting for us – picked and juiced our grapes (sorry, forgot to take a picture), washed the living and dining room drapes (oops, that exposed our windows that are ready for another cleaning), and got started on painting the trim on the outside of the house.

Friday was a day off – and we took full advantage.  We headed out to watch some of our friends and neighbors compete in the BC Senior Games Floor Curling competition:PicMonkey Collage

They came home with a gold medal!  And another friend competed in the bike racing competitions and came home with a gold and a bronze medal.  Not bad for folks in their 70’s and 80’s!

Friday evening we went to the local Fall Fair.  The Midway held its usual fascination for the young and the young-at-heart:DSCN1086

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There was outdoor stage entertainment by a home-grown singer (not our style, so we didn’t stay long)

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We learned that the first night of the fair, there are no animals in the barns yet (will make sure to go on Saturday next year).  But the arts and crafts and horticultural displays were all ready:

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I, of course, particularly liked looking at the quilts – and there were lots of them:

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For the first time ever, I entered a craft project in the fair, the cross-stitch of Kilby Farm (local historic site) that took me several years to complete.  As you can see it got a second place:

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Happy week!                                Blessings, Peg

Monday, September 8, 2014

We’re Home

Sometimes it feels almost like we haven’t been away, as coming home, we’re plunged right back into the regular busyness of life.

But first, a couple more photos to share.

As we left Bar U Ranch a few days ago, we drove a portion of the Cowboy Trail:095

Apparently named because it winds its way through much of Alberta’s ranchlands:

This isn’t the first time we’ve driven parts of this route.  And not the first time that we’ve seen this:

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Either cowboys don’t wear cowboy hats anymore, or they so like their cowboy hats that other caps only get to top fence posts!

But the views of the prairies with the mountain backdrop – breathtaking:

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And then a few days later, we headed west again, and once again stopped just to enjoy the mountains as they got closer:154

As much as we enjoy our road trips, there’s a certain risk in heading out there and we have to stay alert for what other drivers may decide to do.  Over and over again we see drivers passing at risky times, cutting off other drivers, ignoring rules of the road – and then we saw this:155

This wasn’t a ‘new’ accident, and there was no evidence of people needing help, but it’s truly a worry on these roads as you can never know what’s around the corner.  Hopefully this trucker came out of this okay!

Since we arrived home 2 1/2 days ago, we’ve hardly stopped.  First there’s the job of emptying and cleaning the trailer, opening up the house again, getting laundry done…..

Then on Saturday morning we joined our DS-K as he opened the door to his new home for the first time:150

He knew what we’d find inside, at least some of it, but we didn’t.  This was a bank foreclosure, and the previous owners weren’t the cleanest.  It was a shock to pull out the fridge and stove and washer.  First task – pull out all the carpets.  Unfortunately (or maybe fortunately for her) DDIL-M was unable to be there for this as she’s back at school in Edmonton for her last year.

Sunday we returned to help continue the job of making this house live-able.  It was determined that the stove and dishwasher were not keepers, and they were sitting in the carport when a junkman just happened to drive by.  He took the appliances and a few other small bits of metal, and will return to get the freezer (really, really not useable).  How handy was that?!

There’s a lot of work ahead, and after a morning appointment, we’ll go back again to give some more help.  There’s plumbing and electrical to address, as well as paint and then replace flooring.  First up – make the kitchen and bathrooms use-able, clean up the living room and one bedroom.  Once that’s done, K can move in and they can work on the rest of it one step at a time.  A couple of positives: the roof is good for another 20-25 years, and most of the windows are newer thermo-pane.  Actually once it’s cleaned up, mostly esthetics will make this home very desirable.

So, there’s no just sitting around for us – gotta get busy!!!!

Happy busy times!                          Blessings, Peg 

Thursday, September 4, 2014

Bar U Ranch

Our visit to the Bar U Ranch National Heritage Site was, as these kinds of places usually are, absolutely fascinating.

About 130 years ago, the Canadian government would lease land for a penny an acre, for the development of farming and ranching.  And it was then that the first company, Northwest Cattle Company, lease acreage in the southwest section of Alberta.  The ranch was called the Bar U and remained a functioning beef ranch for over 70 years, selling their beef at times to Canada, US and British markets.

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The ranch site is now managed and maintained by the National Parks of Canada as well as Friends of the Bar U Heritage Society.  There are no family living quarters currently on the site, but the buildings that are there are all original.

Besides the beef industry, the ranch was known for its Percheron drafts horses.  Originally developed by Napoleon in La Perche, France, the first two sires were imported in the early 1900’s.  About 90% of the Percheron draft horses world-wide can apparently be traced back to these two sires.

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We had the opportunity to ride in a wagon behind two of these gently giants, just one of three teams currently working on the ranch:DSCN0960DSCN0961

As we rode, Don, the driver entertained us with tales of the ranch, its owners and workers:

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One story is of The Sundance Kid, whose name was actually Harry Longabaugh.  After a stint in a prison in the US, Harry made his way north and got at job at the Bar U.  It was here that he got the nickname by which everybody knows of him today, given to him by ranch hands because of his stay at Sundance Prison.

After our ride, we were entertained to cowboy coffee and more history and tales by Miriam, the camp cook:DSCN0965

There were a few other draft and saddle horses to be seen about:DSCN0974

We saw the horse barns, cattle barns, storage sheds, and the bunk-house:

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But out on the range, when the cowboys were out driving the cattle, the ‘cookhouse’ was a bare bones chuckwagon where food for anywhere from 10-40 men was prepared over an open fire:

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Beans and bannock were staples.

The harvest wagons used in later years weren’t a whole lot bigger, but certainly better equipped:DSCN0938DSCN0939DSCN0940DSCN0941

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Crews would have had to eat in shifts if they couldn’t eat outdoors.

Women did not become part of any crews until the 1920’s apparently, and when they finished the day out on the range, they went home and did another full shift as wife, mother, and housekeeper!

All in all a fascinating visit back in time!

Happy tourism!            Blessings, Peg

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Breaking the Silence

It’s been over a week since my last post, and I thought it was time I let you all in on what’s been going on since then.

We arrived in Alberta last week Tuesday, and have spent most of our time since then with our children and granddaughter.  We even got a morning of babysitting!

An afternoon BBQ had all of us – Grizz and me, three children and their spouses and our granddaughter all in one place at the same time!  Nothing warms this mother/grandmother heart more!

And here they are:228

LV was just about ready to head for bed when we took this picture.

And as you can see little Eli will be joining us soon.  We don’t know yet boy or girl, but one thing we do know for sure, there’s a baby there.

In between our family times, we spent a day at the Calgary Highland Games.  Grizz was judging, I was score-keeping, and DS-J was competing.  The evening before the Games, we were treated to dinner at Big T’s BBQ and Smokehouse.  Huge platters of food224

More than we could eat at our end of the table:

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But the big guys polished it off for us.

Unfortunately I didn’t have my camera with me (a police incident at the hotel precluded us from returning to our room to get our things before heading out to the Games – now that was interesting!), so have no pictures of my own to share.  I pulled a couple of pics from FB of our DS-J competing elsewhere recently.  This first one is just after he’s tossed the hammer (14 or 22 lb.) about 100 feet out into the field.

This next one is as he has ‘picked’ the caber and starting his walk before he tosses it:

I see that Lynn has copyrighted these pictures, so hope I’m not breaking any laws in sharing them with you (they were on FB after all).

Then we had a day for us to do our ‘tourist’ thing, and we headed out to the Bar U ranch – I’ll share pictures and stories from there in a separate post.

Today it’s pouring rain, so we’re having a bit of a lazy day indoors, will probably do some cleaning as we’ll be parking the trailer for the winter when we get home.

It’s been a great vacation time, full of travel, sight-seeing, relaxing, family and fun.

Happy travels!                 Blessings, Peg

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Happy 65 Years

On Saturday, some of the family and a few friends gathered to celebrate with my parents the coming occasion of their 65th anniversary!

Today is actually their date, but weekends work better for get-togethers, plus several of us had commitments that precluded actually gathering ON the day. 

But we had a wonderful time!  The immediate family that couldn’t be there, and much of the extended family and friends sent greetings, and one of my sisters was able to make a Skype call.  PM Stephen Harper sent his greetings as well, thanks to the efforts of my sister (there will be more coming, but time was short and this was the only one to arrive on time).

We read aloud all the cards and greetings that were received, and then read a letter my mother had written to my father – such love, and so many memories!

So today, special greetings and congratulations to my parents, Margaret and Frank, on this day that is uniquely theirs to celebrate!011

And their plans for today???  They’re going to the PNE, where they would have gone back in the days when they were courting.  And then they have a small bottle of champagne to toast each other!

Congratulations   Mom and Dad!