A Pieceful Life

A Pieceful Life


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, January 30, 2009

New things

It took me a while to get back to this. Yesterday, my friend Bev posted on her blog this new method of writing blogs. It intrigued me so I wanted to experiment. First I started to download this Windows Live Writer, to discover that I already had it!! Who knew? Then, in order to try to practice inserting pictures, etc with this, I needed to get some pictures out of our camera, which led me to remembering that I hadn’t yet made the 2008 Photo Album Disc, which meant I needed to go through the pictures, and make sure they were all organized, then copy them onto the disc, then make sure I had the ones separated out that I want to actually print and put in a physical album, then make sure significant pictures, and other documents, are on the external hard drive (so if the computer crashes…), then select the pictures I actually wanted to insert here, then finally get back to this.
So, this week, we went to DH’s brother’s to meet their new puppy. Holly is an 8-wk-old golden retriever, and just an adorable ball of fluff.

So this is cool!!! Much easier to insert pics. There are apparently a number of fonts that can be used, which I’ll not try out right now.
As for the rest of the week – well, I got fabric for the applique for the anniversary quilt. Now I just need to decide what shape I want to applique – the pattern has hands, which is what attracted me in the first place. But stitching (either by machine or hand) 42 of these in place is going to be more than daunting. So I thought of doing mittens – which serves 2 purposes: simpler stitching, and more space for people to write. But mittens seems very child-like, and I’m not sure that’s how I want the quilt to end up. Yesterday afternoon, I suddenly thought of ovals (cameos, pictures, that kind of image). And this morning, in those wee small hours when I was wishing I was asleep, I thought of hearts – family, love … So what do you all think?
As for the dog bed covers – well the fabric is sorted, and some decisions made, but not much further ahead yet with that. I did buy some colorful cat fabric to make a cover for a bed for the cat’s basket (which has had a towel folded in it for the last 11 years). She doesn’t sleep in there much, but the fabric was cheap at 60% off, so I thought – well, it’s another project, one more to add to the list, not too urgent to get done any time soon …
So onto the next week. DS#1 will be arriving from Calgary today. He’s spending the weekend before he heads to NWT to work in a diamond mine. We inherit the dog – a lovely 11-year-old black lab (thank heaven she comes with her own beds already made!!) DS will be here for the weekend and family will gather to spend time together on Sunday. Beyond that, I think I just need to tackle some of these projects and see if I can make some headway, start on the ESS courses, and of course lose some more weight.

It's just way too early in the morning

It really is way too early. I don't know what wakes me up, but I just can't seem to get back to sleep some mornings, so after an hour or so of tossing and turning and listening to DH and the dog snore, which makes me jealous and more restless as I try to get a few more ZZZs in myself, I finally get up. Most of the time on these mornings, I crack a book, which usually puts me back to sleep just about the time I'd need to get up and get moving anyway. This morning, I was already awake when DH made his nightly trip to the BR, which woke the dog, who paced the hall (clacking her toenails) trying to decide if she needed to come in and greet us or if she could go back to sleep, which made me more awake in my annoyance at listening to her. If I could accomplish something productive while lying in bed, I might be able to stay there longer. In years past, I'd take the time to pray, which was a sure cure for the insomnia, but that doesn't work anymore. Oh, I pray (mostly that I can get back to sleep), but after a while my back and neck are sore, and my head starts to ache ... oh, the pleasures of middle age!!! I wonder if sleep patterns revert to those of childhood as we get older and other aspects of life get more juvenile - like wearing purple with a red hat that doesn't go and doesn't suit me? Somehow I doubt it.

By the way that's one of my favorite poems, called Warning, and is the basis for the Red Hat Society. I have a crossstitch of it in our bedroom, just to remind me of the pleasures of getting older and enjoying life without the worries of what others think or whether time is being 'wasted'.

Well, thinking about wasting time - these last few months of not working have been very pleasurable - more than pleasurable, most of the time I think I've died and gone to heaven. Doing what I want, when I want, as slow or as fast as I want is wonderful. But I still need to accomplish something every day, thus the goals that I set for myself every week. So, I'm not really wasting away the time, but somehow it's not quite enough. I am finding more and more frequently that I'm restless and looking for something else. Thus the search for a job as mentioned in my last post. I've looked at the local library, and even applied for casual work - so far no calls. There's also a company that needs RNs to do insurance medicals - now they'd love to hire me, but I need to get certified in phlebotomies (blood-letting) first, and it may be some weeks before I can get into a course for that. So I've contacted my old boss to see what she might have for me to do. Any one of these would leave freedom to select my work-hours, and be able to spend time with DH, and do some of the fun things like quilting and jig-saw puzzles and camping and traveling and and baking bread and decorating cakes and reading and geocaching...

Now there's another new one for us - geocaching. What's that, you say? Well, I'm not really sure, but apparently it's got something to do with a GPS and hiking. We're getting a GPS from DH's barber, and plan to do some (very mild) hiking to find places where people have cached items for other people to find. It'll get us out and exercising some more and learning something else new.

I do love to learn new things, which has led me to some of the projects I've tackled lately. This week we went to meet with the Emergency Social Services folks (who are more than happy to have volunteers), and will be taking some courses so that we can be of service in the event of need. They also have a house - where they meet and plan and store and sort and, and , and - which is sadly in dire need of organizing. Now that's just up my alley, and the coordinator seemed really excited at having somebody on board who could maybe tackle some of that. So we'll also be starting a couple of on-line courses, and then there will be more to learn later. But it looks like we're in!!!

There's also cake decorating - something I've wanted to do for a long time. I registered for the class which was to start last week, but was cancelled because of a lack of students. So, hopefully it will be a go next month.

Well, honestly as I read back on this, I think life is pretty darn full. It's no wonder I wake up so early in the morning - sleeping would eat away too much time!!!

This past week's goals were mostly met - except the weight loss - I'm sorry to have to admit that I actually gained a pound!! I'm going to sign off now and start a separate blog to let you in on a little more of my life this past week, and practice some new blogging techniques.

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Anniversary flimsy

Happy day to you all - I've just been reading my sister's blog (Yemalla's Moon) and am once again inspired to journal my thoughts and experiences. At the same time, I'm fully aware that I'll never be able to match her ability to put thoughts and feelings into words. She just has that inborn ability to be aware of what she thinks and feels, and to be able to put them in writing - and in a way that is thoroughly enjoyable, at least for me.

Anyway, I'm here to show you the Anniversary Quilt flimsy - finished just this morning.

The next step is to get the fabric for the 'hand' appliques, and decide how to applique them (hand or machine) and when to applique (before or after quilting). Idon't know if I told you or not, but the plan is to applique outlines of hands (or maybe mittens - easire and quicker to sew), and have each family member sign a hand - for my parents' 60th anniversary in August.

Last week's goals have all been met, including a little more weight loss. Just a couple more pounds to go to reach my goal, and become a Lifetime member of WeightWatchers.

Today we're spending time with brother-in-law and sister-in-law as they empty their trailer, parked in an RV spot at our strata complex, in preparation for trading it in for a slightly larger model. Tomorrow, we'll celebrate our youngest son's birthday with him and his wife and in-laws. It appears to be an in-law weekend!!

For now I need to go and relax and let my back and shoulders recup from the hours of sewing this morning, so I can do it all over again on Monday!!

The goals for the coming week: make the next decisions re the Anniversary quilt, get started on quilted covers for the dog's beds, look into a couple of job applications I have out there - and maybe contact my old boss for some part-time work, read John Grisham's latest book, and attend at a meeting for Emergency Social Services to see if we can be of any help.

Monday, January 19, 2009

Home again and back to quilting

Good Monday morning, world. I know it's been a while since I shared with you all last, but it's been an incredibly busy week. We finally were able to leave Calgary on Jan 11. As we left the city, moon hung over the horizon enticing us to try to reach for it. This pic is what it looked like over Nose Hill.

We stopped at Canmore for breakfast, and there was this herd of elk. It's not often we've seen this many together in one spot, and had to preserve the memory. The snow and the mountains were brilliant.

Our drive home was essentially uneventful, and we pulled up to the house at about noon on Monday. Since then it's been flat out busy. Unpacking, collecting the cat, getting Christmas put away, catching up with all of our friends' lives, strata council meeting, getting back into exercising and dieting, getting hair cut (it was really, really shaggy!!), Highland Games meeting, and finally, finally starting to make some progress on the anniversary quilt. This picture is the strip sets on my design board, ready to be sewn into blocks. As you can see, I'm short a few strip sets, but that has been rectified, and today I should get at least some of them sewn together. As I've said before, this is for an anniversary gift for my parents - so if you know them, please be sure not to tell them about this. The reunion (for their 60th) is in August, and I'm hoping to surprise them with this.

Getting back to Weight Watchers this week brought the pleasant news that my weight is still on the downward slide, which served the purpose of encouraging me to keep on keeping on.
During the week, our strata secretary resigned for personal reasons, so I'm going to take on her duties until a replacement can be found. So today I need to get the news out to the owners at large to see if we get a response to the appeal. Our Highland Games executive meeting was successful, and decisions/plans for the year were laid out, now those need to be shared with the membership.
We finished the week with celebrating a friend's 60th birthday party - a great time, met up with many, many old friends we haven't seen in a long, long time. So the catching up with friends' lives included finding out how things have been going for some people we haven't seen in literally years - grandchildren and retirement and moves ....
So my goals for the week: lose another pound or two, get the strip sets all sewn together in blocks, deliver the t-shirt quilt top to the quilter, get the strata minutes and HG minutes out to the world, and sign up for a cake decorating class!!!

Friday, January 9, 2009

Snow, Rain, Mud

This is a picture of our neighborhood, sent to us by a friend a couple of days ago

It's been a snowy Christmas for everybody everywhere. When we headed out from home to Calgary just before Christmas, it was so very cold and we hoped to get some relief at some point. Our drive was in -20 to -30 weather all the way. Throughout our stay here, we've seen it get as warm as +3. So weather has been cold, but not unbearably so most days, some snow but not enought to immobilize us completely. Little did we know that we were probably in the safest place we could be. Over the last few days, as we started to prepare to head home, we watched BC news and road reports a lot more closely. We had planned to be home today - but apparently there's not one safe/open road between here and home. I've just been reading the Global news and Chilliwack web-sites - mud-slides, avalanches, floods have closed roads all over BC, and forced evacuations all over the Lower Mainland. It appears that our home in Agassiz is safe, but as you can see by the picture above we would have had to shovel a lot of snow had we been there. Nobody has reported that there's any flooding right in Agassiz (yet) but it sounds like there's lots of rain happening there as well. So for the time being, we're here in Calgary, spending more time with our children, wishing everybody well at home, and praying for safety for all of those affected by this weather.

Thursday, January 1, 2009

I'm experimenting to see if I can get better use of pics. I'm hoping that this pic of our DD's Christmas tree will display in such a way that you can click on it to see a larger image. Note how the tree deco coordinates with her curtains, and indeed the rest of her decor in the living room - she's an interior designer and it shows!!