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.

Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Christmas in Calgary

Well, finally sitting down to get caught up on this. DH and I left home on Dec. 20 to tackle the road to Calgary. We went through Kelowna first to stop briefly and deliver a Christmas package to my parents. Roads were great - the worst being over the Coquihalla and connector, but even that wasn't all that bad. The first pic is the highway just no rth of Vernon, then a shot of 3 Valley Gap, then a view of the Rockies as we headed into them. Weather was very cold, -20 to -30 all day.







We stopped at a motel in Golden, then arrived at our son's home in Calgary shortly after noon on the 21st. We spent the first few days just relaxing, visiting the kids. Our son's girlfriend and I made chocolates, DH got the turkey in brine and we took it over to our daughter's house. DD and partner were expecting his parents to arrive Christmas Eve, and dinner was planned for that evening as his brother was only out from Banff for the one night, back to work for Christmas Day. Well, the snow in the Fraser Valley delayed the flight, so dinner was without the parents from Chilliwack - they arrived finally on the 25th at 10:30 pm. The next pic is of the Christmas Eve dinner table loaded with food, then one of most of us with our party hats on. The brother from Banff took the pic for us.



It's now New Years' Eve. DD and partner left for the Bahamas yesterday, well actually middle of the night on the 29-30, and DH and I are house/dog/cat sitting for a week. We'll go over to DS house this afternoon, cook our sauerbraten (marinated roast - we have one beef and one venison in the marinade now) and then to his girlfriend's house to ring in the New Year - with maybe a game or two, a movie or two, whatever. I bought a new game, Five Crowns, that looks like it could be fun. We might even tackle Canasta for a while.

In the meantime, I brought some quilting and sewing projects with me, and DD wants some minor alterations on pillow covers and a duvet cover. When I get to the quilting projects, I'll take some pictures so you can all see them. These kids also have a ton of movies, so we can get caught up on all that we've missed over the last few years, and I can work on a cross-stitch project while relaxing. Anyway - will get back to you all in a few days.

Oh, and the weight - well, we've not watched it too closely, but been trying to be reasonable - anyway, it doesn't feel like I've gained any - will try to get to a Weight Watchers on Friday to weigh in.

Also, I've not been keeping you all updated about my weekly resolutions. This week: maintain the weight for at least a few more days; get some quilting projects at least cut out; sew a dress that's been waiting for me to tackle for a few years.

Happy New Year to you all.

Friday, December 19, 2008

Well, happy 6 days before Christmas. We've spent the last 2 days just getting ready to head out to Calgary to spend Christmas with our 2 older children. We haven't been away from home for Christmas for years, and we can't believe the undertaking this is. Christmas gifts, Christmas cookies, a turkey, some chicken liver pate, fixings for mulled wine, extra warm clothing, camera and tripod, computer, dog's needs, blankets, sleeping bags, pillows, thermal underwear, books, cross-stitch, some sewing projects - it's almost more than packing up the trailer!! But we're almost there. Just have to wash a last load of clothes, and we'll be ready to hit the sack, so we can get on the road in the morning.

Wishing everybody a very merry Christmas - will share pics when we have some time to sit back down.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Winter Wonderland

I just read my sister's blog Walking in a Winter Wonderland, and couldn't resist adding a comment about the winter wonderland here. My sister lives in northern BC, where they've had snow now for weeks, and sub-zero temperature for almost as long. But here in the Fraser Valley, we've only experienced winter for a few days. The wind started blowing on Saturday, 4 days ago, shook up the whole town downing trees, carrying shingles off roofs, and knocking out the power for varying periods just enough to mess up all the clocks in the house!! Temperatures hit -7, forcing us to pull out all the stops and gather up the warmest winter wear we could find. The dog got her first walk in days on Tuesday, with a quick trip to check the mail - that's all I could stand as my face felt like it was freezing in the wind. But she doesn't seem to mind, as her trips to the back yard are shorter and less frequent in this weather. This morning, we woke to our first snowfall. It started sometime during the night and we have enough to make us shovel the driveway - which will only need to be redone again in a few hours. So here we are, hunkered down, with flashlights and candles and butane stove at the ready for the next power outage, fireplaces burning brightly to keep the temperature up in the house, and me sneaking in a quick blog before being cut off from the world again.

What we discovered during the last power outages is that we lose phone contact too quite quickly - the battery backup for the phone line may last 8 hours, but the portable phones only last about an hour before those batteries die. So yesterday, we went and got the cell phone we've been meaning to buy since I retired and the phone got retired with me. That was an adventure in itself, until we found a wonderfully knowledgeable young man at Wireless Wave who walked us through the whole process of selecting the right phone, the right plan, the necessary add-ons, initializing the phone, setting up an account, getting a good holder (which cost almost as much as the phone in the end), and charging us less than the price listed for the phone on the display!! Now we just have to figure out all the buttons (which we can actually read without glasses) and make sure we know what we're doing before we head for Calgary later this week.

Anyway, enough today about the weather. I promised you a picture of my Delectable Mountains quilt, so here it is.


I'm absolutely thrilled with this, and love being able to show it off on our bed.

This week, I also finished a little Christmas table topper, combining two blocks: a 4-square Kaleidoscope that we learned at our Monday night quilting group, and Disappearing 9-patch. It turned out rather well, I thought - it's just below here.


While I'm sharing quilt pictures - here's a picture of Criss-Cross Applesauce, that I made with Blue Meadow designs. It was a Mystery Quilt, but I only discovered it after the mystery had been solved.



So, on to the day - getting packed for our trip to Calgary to spend Christmas with 2 of our children. The last picture for today shows our spare bedroom as it looks as we try to get organized for the trip - taking food, gifts, camera, all the essentials for traveling in snow. And by the way, the quilt hanging in the background is a Double Wedding Ring king-size that I picked up in Oklahoma a few years ago for a real deal!!

Friday, December 12, 2008

Well, Christmas is really here - we had our first Christmas get-together last night after our community Christmas carolling event. Friends came to share some Christmas cheer, and taste of the first batch of hot mulled wine. That's become a tradition in this house, but for the first time the pot was emptied!! But it gave me a chance to show off the new counter top on the kitchen island. I mentioned that in my last blog, and want to add a picture here so you can all see it.



Isn't it gorgeous!!

I also got a Christmas table-topper started, using a combination of kaleidoscope squares and Disappearing 9-patch. When it's done, and I have a picture, I'll get that posted.
Then my Delectable Mountains quilt came back from the quilter yesterday. It will be finished in the next day or so, and that picture will be forthcoming.
Aside from quilting, we're getting ready for a family Christmas dinner on Sunday - that'll be fun. DH and I are going to Calgary to spend Christmas with our 2 children there, then staying on to sit for our DD's dog and cat while they go to the Bahamas for a week. DS1 has also sent us a note that he is looking at a temporary (up to a year) job at a diamond mine in NWT, and needs a home for his dog. Jemma is a wonderful 11-year-old black lab, so she may be coming home with us in January.
Resolutions for this week: finish the Delectable Mountains quilt, finish the Christmas table-topper quilt, wrap all the Christmas gifts ready to go to Calgary, finish DIL's Christmas stocking - oh, and pick up the new laptop, and get it all set up - and lose another pound or two!!
Should be a busy week.

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Good morning world - it's a dull Sunday morning, but right now, I'm thinking it's beautiful. I'm really excited to get into blogging, and plan to share with you all my new life as a retired person. I'm currently reading Maeve Binchy's new book, Heart and Soul. A character in the book said she makes three resolutions every day - the current day she planned to persuade a patient to learn her medication names and uses, lose 4 pounds, and meet a new man at a charity dinner she planned to attend. The idea of setting resolutions regularly (daily, weekly) really attracted me. I wish I could plan to lose 4 pounds in a week, but know that's not going to happen, especially now at Christmas time. But I can determine to lose something!!! I joined Weight-watchers a few weeks ago, and am down 6 pounds all together, so feeling pretty positive about it all.
This character is a nurse, and I'm a retired nurse, so I could relate to her desire to persuade her patient to know all about her health care needs, but no need to do any persuading any longer. I just retired the end of October, so this is a new life-style for me. My DH has been retired for 7 years, and loves it - although right about now, he's probably wishing that I'd go back to work, so he could go back to his peaceful life!! The first day off, I turned our house upside down in order to move my sewing space into the family room. That meant moving the TV into the living room (but that gave us an excuse to buy a new TV, as the only reasonable space was over the fireplace and that meant a flat-screen). Anyway, the house got turned upside down the first day, but it took a week to get it back right-side up again. At least I know every nook and cranny is clean!! Since then, I've persuaded DH to build some sliding shelves in the kitchen cupboards, and finally replace the kitchen island countertop with a butcher block top. They're fabulous. And next time, I'll take the time to figure out how to post pictures so you can all see what they look like.
I also plan to make this blog a place to share my quilting adventures with you all. I'm fairly new to quilting, mostly because working didn't give me the time I'd have liked to devote to it. But I've taken on a really big project this past year that I'll share as well.
Well, it seems I have lots of resolutions, at least in relation to blogging. I'll get back to you all in a few days - maybe my first real resolution will be to blog at least once a week.