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.

Thursday, October 31, 2013

A Halloween (Blog-Hop) Party

Happy Halloween to you all.

2013 Hallowe'en Blog Hop

We’re not big on Halloween in this house, and generally tend to try to ignore it.  But this morning, I found a Halloween Blog Hop that was lots of fun, and inspiring for anybody who loves to cross-stitch.  So why not head over to Serendipitous Stitching and hop around, discover the mystery phrase, and see all the wonderful stitching that these folks have done for Halloween (and lots of other occasions as well).  And you might win a prize while you’re at it!

Happy Halloween Hop!               Blessings, Peg

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Wednesday Words and Hodgepodge

Here it is Wednesday again.  Busy week, getting that quilt together, after suffering quilter’s block (more on that later).  If you want to read more Hodgepodge, follow the link on my sidebar.

1. What's something you're dealing with that might be described as tricky?

Tricky, huh?  Well, a quilt pattern that I’ve designed, and want to get done up to show you all – it’ll get there someday, making progress regularly.

2. What's your treat of choice?

Chocolate, always chocolate – in any form, in any amount!

3. Did you/will you carve a jack-o-lantern this month? Which real (living or dead) or fictional 'Jack' would you most like to meet in person? Why?

No pumpkin carving in this house any more.  As for a ‘Jack’ that I’d like to meet – how about Jack Klugman, always loved his acting.

4. In your opinion, what's the grossest sounding word in the English language?

‘Cackle’ comes to mind – just think of those witches hovering over those cauldrons, with who-knows-what in them!!  LOL!

5. When did your heart last skip a beat?

Happens every time my husband kisses me ‘that way’ .  Actually makes my heart skip just thinking about it!

6.  Monster Mash by Bobby 'Boris' Pickett, Michael Jackson's Thriller, Werewolves of London by Warren Zevon or Ray Parker Jr.'s Ghostbusters...your favorite 'scary' tune?

Don’t pay a lot of attention to ‘tunes’, but what comes to mind is The Twilight Zone – noo noo noo noo.  Oh, man, now it’s going to be in my head all day!

7.  It was a dark and stormy night when__________________________

Drawing a blank on this one!

8.  Insert your own random thought here.

Was all ready to show you the quilt top, sans borders, but when I looked at the picture, I saw a glaring mistake that I just can’t live with.  So today will be a frogging day – then when it’s back together correctly, and I have the borders on, I’ll show you.

In the meantime – here’s a picture of the dogwood tree in our back yard – glorious:

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Have I said before how much I like fall colors?!?  Years ago, there was a Colors movement in fashion, and people held home parties just to discover what color-way suited them best.  Well, I’m a ‘fall’ person, but then just look at the color choices in my wardrobe, and one needs no checking of the wrist, draping of the scarves, or testing of the cosmetics to know that (about me at least).  Apparently, though, black is a color (or non-color) that I should never wear, but sometimes, there’s nothing for it but that ‘little black dress’.

Happy fall!                  Blessings, Peg

Saturday, October 26, 2013

The World of Men

Don’t you just love good service?  I sure do, especially when I have to deal with those things that generally Grizz tends to, and I enter the ‘world of men’.

Grizz right now isn’t allowed to drive, needs a couple more weeks of healing after his knee surgery.  But it was time to get our snow tires put on, just in case we needed to go over the mountains to see my parents.  So off to the tire shop I went.  No problem, tires on, everything checks out – we do need to think about doing a brake job soon.

Three days later, headed out to the vehicle and the wonderful electronic monitoring system displayed a message on the dash that the left front tire was low.  Hmmm…..so I got out to take a look.  That tire looked okay, but the left rear looked a little sad.

So I got Grizz, and we checked the pressure on both tires, filled up the rear tire, and I added another stop at the tire store to my list for the day.

The service rep was more than happy to arrange to check the tire out, and in the end they replaced the valve stem thinking it might be leaking, but otherwise couldn’t see any problems.  Okay, good to go!

Two days later, the same tire is low again (but the monitor still said to check the front tire????), so back to the tire store – this time they decided that there was a little bit of corrosion around the rim, so they cleaned that out and put everything back together again.

Another three days, and a trip to Costco and back, and now the monitoring system says the left rear tire is low.  Again, checked the pressure manually – I’m getting really good at this! – it looked okay, but stopped at the tire store anyway to ask them to double-check the pressure for me.  They were, once again, more than happy to do that and I pulled the van into the service bay.

A nice young man checked the pressure on both front and rear tires on the left side, which were all okay, then said he’d check the other side.  Wouldn’t you know the right front tire was obviously a little low.  Hmmmm…..so why does the monitor say it’s the left rear.  Solution, maybe the sensors need to be reset.  Oh, who knew?!  So after testing to ascertain that in fact when the right front tire is low, the system thinks it’s the left rear, this fellow did some fancy-dancy playing with an electronic gizmo, then retested the system by letting air out of a tire to see if the monitor displayed the message for the correct tire, he’s happy that all is fixed.

That was two days ago.  The tire pressure seems to be holding.  When I go back for the brake job, they’ve assured me they’ll check all the tires once again while they have them off the vehicle.

Through all of this, I never once felt that any of these men thought that I was just a ditzy broad who didn’t have a clue what she was talking about.  Never once felt condescension or neglect from any of them.  They all seemed concerned that I would be safe on the road, and treated me respectfully.  It was, all in all, a happy experience.

So, now I know for sure how to use a tire pressure gauge,

know what the pressure is supposed to be on my tires, know where to find that information – and know where to go to get service when I have a problem.

Lessons learned, and so happy to have found a great tire shop with fabulous service – and they never once groaned when they saw me coming!

Happy service!           Blessings, Peg

YES!

I got it – woke up yesterday morning with Disappearing 9 Patch in my head.  Oh, that’s what I can do for that baby quilt. 

First I want to thank all of you who suggested ways to get over quilter block.  Good ideas all, and I’ll certainly be tucking them away for future reference.

So after another look at some fabrics that I already have, I started looking around the web for D9P patterns and tutorials – don’t you just love the web for all the information and ideas that are right at hand!

Anyway, in my Pinterest pictures, found Fractured 9 Patch, from Linda’s Quiltmania site, complete with tutorial:

Linda's Quiltmania: Fractured Nine Patch, featuring Coma

And I set to work measuring and cutting, then sewing and I’m getting there.  The fabrics are Dr. Seuss.  Today, I’ll put together the last of the 9-patch blocks, then begin the fracturing process.

So happy to be back at the drawing board sewing machine again.

Pictures in a couple of days!               Blessings, Peg

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Stuck!

You’ve heard of writer’s block, well, I seem to have quilter’s block.  For some reason I just can’t settle on fabrics and a pattern for a baby quilt that needs to be done before Christmas.  I’ve searched web-sites, wandered through fabric stores, pulled fabrics from my stash – and put them back.  Not sure why this is such a struggle!

In the meantime, no other quilting is getting done either, I’m completely obsessed with this one quilt, none of the others matter.

And there’s a pile of quilts needing binding waiting for me.001

And there are a few projects in bins waiting for me.

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Any ideas out there?  Got any inspiration?

Happy helpers!              Blessings, Peg

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Wednesday’s Words and HodgePodge

It’s been a while since my last HodgePodge – no excuses, just is.  If you want to read more HodgePodge, follow the link on my sidebar.

1. When it comes to good manners, what two top your list of most important?

Opening doors for others, and stepping aside to allow the other person to pass.  I just think these show so much consideration and respect, especially if the other person is older, or has some obvious impediment (including carrying a large load of groceries).

2. Let's open a proverbial can of worms...Common Core.  Are you familiar with the term (talking education reform in the USA)?  If so, care to share your thoughts? In your opinion, what is one of the biggest issues schools (in your home country) face today?

Haven’t heard of this before, so right now no comment.  But as for issues in schools today – probably lack of discipline, not just on the part of teachers, but parents as well.  I really think teachers’ jobs would be so much easier if the children came to school with a sense of self-discipline and respect for others.  And parents need to respect the teachers’ need to discipline, just in order to keep some semblance of order in a classroom of 25-30+ children.  I could go on, but I’ll stop there.

3. Name a celebrity whose fashion sense you admire and share why.

I pay so little attention to celebrities, I can’t even begin to answer.

4. How are you affected by the changing seasons?

I find I enjoy the changing seasons, each one brings its own beauty and enjoyment.  I also find at the beginning of each new season, I’m inspired to do things like clean and organize and start new projects.  It’s kind of like a new beginning for me as well as for the world around me.

5. Scariest book you've ever read?

I avoid scary – books, movies, TV shows. Even at Halloween, this is much more my style:

 

6. What time of day are you most hungry? What's your go-to snack?

Most hungry around 3-4 in the afternoon, must be a left-over from the childhood after-school snacks.  My go-to snack will almost always be chocolate if it’s around (so I tend to not keep it in the house), if not that, then I like cheese and crackers.

7. Do you lean more towards being too needy or too independent? Which do you find harder to deal with in others?

I think I tend to be more independent, and actually get resentful of others trying to ‘help’ at times.  Probably why I find needy people annoying.

8.  Insert your own random thoughts here.

I think I have always done crafts of one sort or another.  Knitting was first, as a bunch of us wandered around the school yard with yarn in our pockets and needles in our hands (can you imagine schools letting kids have knitting needles these days?).  Then I learned to crochet, and I made everything I could think of – doilies and tablecloths and sweaters and even a blouse.  At one of those home sales parties, I picked up a cross-stitch, and fell in love.  Other needlework like embroidery and needlepoint is okay, but cross-stitch is my passion, and it’s rare now for me to not have a cross-stich project on the go. 

Actually right now, I don’t have a cross-stitch project going.  The hand-work I’m doing now is needlepoint, but only because I fell in love with the picture, thinking it was cross-stitch, saved the pattern for years until this past summer when I pulled it out and read the materials list. But, I still want the project, so I’m forging ahead – a little over 2/3 finished now

Doesn’t that just warm your heart thinking about having it on your mantel for Christmas!     I can hardly wait to put it all together.

Happy crafting!           Blessings, Peg

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

It Must be Fall

When the quilt shows start to abound.  There were two in our area this past weekend, and my Sis-in-law joined me.  Here’s a sampling of what we saw:

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This little biker was embarrassed to be seen at a quilt show, even with a Harley quilt:

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There were lots of Jelly Roll 1600 (Race) quilts this year.  I overheard somebody recently say that they knew of a quilter who built one of these tops in 45 minutes.  Have you done one?  What is your fastest time?  I’ve done a couple – took me about 1.5 hours if I remember correctly.

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At the local yarn and needlework shop display, they had their own version of a patchwork quilt.  I wanted the pattern, but it only came with a kit, so I took a closer look.  It’s literally knitted squares, sewn together, placed on point.  I think I can even do that!!!!  Just might need a lesson from my knitter sister how to make the set-in triangles on the edges. 

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But if you need any further proof that fall has arrived, just take a look at the colors around.  This is the tree in our front yard:022

The colors are much more rich in real than they show in this picture, and make me want a quilt in that color.

Happy inspiration!             Blessings, Peg

Monday, October 21, 2013

Monday ‘Musement

Once upon a time, a phone was stuck to a wall usually in a kitchen or in a hallway, and we had to get out of our chair or stop whatever else we were doing and go to the phone to answer it, and then we talked to whoever was on the other end of the line.  Then somebody thought it would be nice to have the phone sit on the kitchen counter, and make them in decorator colors – never mind the water and whatever else in the kitchen might get into the phone – but we still went to it and talked to whoever was on the line.  Then we added phones in other rooms, bedrooms, living rooms, dens, and we didn’t have to go so far to answer.  Then there was the phone in the car, and we could phone home and let folks know when we were running late, or check to see what we needed to pick up at the grocery store before we got home.  The telephone world became more and more mobile.  But we still talked on it.

Then came the first cellular phones and gradually they shrank, and had a display screen so one could know who was calling, and then somebody thought it would be cool to use the alphabet on the phone pad to send messages, and one could know that even if the recipient wasn’t right near their phone, eventually they would get the message.  When that became cumbersome, somebody put a typewriter pad on a phone, and ‘texting’ became much, much easier.  And we no longer had to talk on the phone.  Actually I’m not sure why they’re called phones anymore, because we hardly have to ‘phone’ anybody, we just ‘text’ them.  It’s an interesting world we live in, and just writing this makes me realize how the world has changed in my lifetime.  Just imagine how much it has changed for those people, like my aunts, who were alive before there were telephones in every household.

I remember being in my aunt’s farmhouse kitchen, and the phone rang –

2 long, 2 short – and they knew the neighbor on the next farm was getting a call.  They even had an answering service – just call the next farm and say they had to be out for a few hours, would somebody answer their calls.

Now our phones go with us everywhere, we talk and text and take pictures and send them and surf the ‘net and mark our calendars and leave ourselves memos and play games and keep up with our social network and calculate the unit cost of an item and check the weather.  They don’t even have to ring any more, just vibrate in our pocket, and nobody in the movie theater knows that we’re being called messaged (there’s even a new lingo).

A little while ago, we were in a restaurant, sitting just across from a young couple, both of them on their phones, not talking.  I wondered if they were messaging each other, just like some of those commercials we’ve seen.

The following was posted by a friend on FB this morning:

Out for dinner

It is a new world, sometimes I’m not sure I really like it, but it does make me laugh!

And talking of sending pictures on phones, got this one on mine just yesterday:

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A future quilter – my niece learning how to use a sewing machine!

Happy networking!              Blessings, Peg

Saturday, October 19, 2013

Flying Geese

Yesterday I was out in the yard doing some clean-up, when I heard a noise.

I followed the noise, up, way up, in the sky, and this is what I saw:

Not having my camera right beside me, and knowing the geese would be gone before I got inside and back out again, I stole borrowed this picture from the internet. 

I love fall, the colors, the crisp air, the sounds of the geese (going where I wish I could go for a little while).

And isn’t this a good time to use Flying Geese in a quilt?  This is the closest I’ve come lately:

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A little fuzzy, sorry, but that’s what happens when you try to enlarge a small piece of a picture.  Anyway, this is Circle of Geese, one of Linda’s Stashbuster blocks.

A number of years ago, I did this wall-hanging for my mother:003. Flying geese.jpg

The Flying Geese strips are paper pieced, my first foray into that method, then appliqued on top of the background.

Happy fall!                   Blessings, Peg

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Catch-up

A little while ago, I posed the question, ‘What do you do with your time?’  It was rhetorical, because it came with an inspirational video to make one think about time and how it’s spent.

I had intended following up with some of the results of my time-spending, but it just never happened.  Looking back, I see that I haven’t shared anything substantial for quite a while, so today is a little bit of catch-up.

Fairly early in September my brother, SIL and niece came for a visit, and we all trekked over to Wayward Pines.

118.Visiting Wayward Pines with M, V and Eryn

You may remember previous posts about this ‘town’, which is actually a film set that has transformed the main street in our little town.  As a matter of fact, as the three of them drove through on their way to our house, my SIL was heard to exclaim on the shoe shop, the toy shop, the candy shop, with full intent to spend a day shopping.  Well, window shopping was all we could do in most of the shops, but it was fun.  But we all wanted to ride the carousel:

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Mid-September is always Fair Time here, and we were home for a change and able to head over to enjoy the displays, the animals, the entertainment – and of course, eat some corn on the cob:

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The quilts were inspiring

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Somebody did some research on quilting history – just a reminder of the sister-(and brother-) hood to which we all belong:

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In the meantime Grizz has had total knee replacement surgery, spent all of 48 hours in the hospital, and now we (and it IS we because he’s not allowed to drive yet) do physio runs twice a week.  He’s recovering nicely, every day gets a bit better, and I have had to become a nag to make him remember to use his cane (not that nagging is that much of a stretch).

Then our Sadie got a GI infection, which laid her low for a couple of days and meant a trip to the vet – not her favorite place to go, but they always do a fabulous job making her feel better, just wish we could explain it to her:

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September quilting time was spent getting a few tops sandwiched and quilted, and now these are complete:

A Linus blanket for a (kind-of) nephew:

120.Colton's Linus blanket

A baby blanket for a niece who has joined the family

121.Noella's quilt

A table topper for a house-warming gift:

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There are a few more now just waiting for binding to be finished.

Also been working on Linda’s Stash-buster Challenge – 7 blocks now completed:DSCN9937DSCN9936

 

Between times, I continue to do some needlework, some genealogy, lots of reading, and of course waste some of that time I mentioned at the top of this post just playing on the computer.

I think that catches up – will try to let you all in on our activities a little more regularly!

Happy fall!            Blessings, Peg