Sanna's Bag

“I never seem to have what I need when I need it. I’m going to make a belt-bag that’s bigger on the inside than on the outside, and just carry everything with me.”

Saturday, July 31, 2010

So I have this quilt batt . .

This quilt batt is 90 x 108 inches. I am sewing to clear the stash, so I determined to piece both sides. I pulled together a colorway, and invited MJ to come over and sew with me. I figured that two machines and strip piecing would get it done in no time. Some of the fabric was already torn into 6 inch strips so I began tearing the rest into strips. Some of them just begged to be sewn together, so I slapped up a couple of seams. Then the Vision smacked me between the ears, and I spent most of Thursday sewing. MJ came over Friday morning, and I got out my vintage steel Singer and she settled down to the Janome and we both sewed pretty much non-stop for around five hours, till she had to leave. And we STILL weren't done! I sewed another two hours after that, and now there are only two long seams, and both front and back wll be finished. Next project - finding a space big enough to spread it out and pin the front, back, and batting together. I do not have that much clear floor space in my house. Sooo - backyard, or garage?

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Another quilt

Benita purged her stash and sent me some fat quarters which have insisted on becoming a stripey green and yellow comforter. I mis-called this style a biscuit quilt, but biscuit quilts are actually little pillows, turned and stuffed and sew together. These comforters have raw seams on one side which get all fringey and fuzzy with a couple trips through the washer. So here's the raw seams side. Nice and bright and happy to work with all the yellow and green selvedges that show.

And here's the happy yellow and green side. There are kitchen themed strips and floral strips and charming children and circus animals . . . it will be a fun comforter for a child to sleep with. And since I have run out of fluffy batting, I made it with three layers of fabric which makes for a heavy, but toasty warm cover. In Denmark, they call a heavy blanket, "a virgin killer." Evidently an experienced woman won't be crushed under all that weight.

When we went out for our anniversary dinner, DH and I wore the clothes we wore to get married in. (Brag, brag! We can still wear the clothes we wore 16 years ago!) So, since it was a warm and joyous occasion, and we both got a bit steamy with wine and hot food and rowdy laughter, I had to take things to the drycleaner. (My wedding dress is pink raw silk, knee length. Very versatile!) (I should have gotten photos, I know.) Anyhow, it was a glorious morning, and the drycleaner is about a mile away, so I walked. On the way, I spotted roses forcing their way through a hedge about nine feet above the sidewalk.

And a rebellious, freedom-seeking vine sneaking out through a knot-hole.

And a perfect pink and ivory rose blooming in the front yard of an abandoned house.

And on the way back, I stopped and chatted with a guy who was supervising a lad inspecting the top of the local water tower. Turns out that Don is the guy in charge of the local water department, and we had a great chat while the young fellow got photos of the tower top before the cell phone folks came to do maintainence on their antennae. The city gets three thousand a month from the cell phone people to allow them to put the antennae and repeaters up there. Seems like a great deal to me! Your cell phone dollars helping to maintain your water supply.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

la-la-lazy weekend

Doncha love my new hat?
We've had a quiet weekend after that rocking Friday. A little grocery shopping, a little lunch out, a little lolling in the livingroom.

A little sewing

And the other side. The prints on this side are from the selection of fat quarters that Benita gave me. These are pink and purple squares with a pink background.
Benita also gave me a load of green and yellow fat quarters that are going into a fuzzy seam quilt tomorrow.

Friday, July 23, 2010

Yeah! Oooooo, yeah!

Sixteen years ago today the most wonderful man in the world married me in our back yard. The 21 years I have known him have been the happiest years of my life. He has decided that it is his job to make me happy, and he is extremely good at his job!!

So today he took the wole day off and we have been out, celebrating out butts off! First a quick weigh in at Weight Watchers. I held steady. Then breakfast at Sully's. I had the hangtown fry. YUM!! Then a quick stop at the wonderful new yarn store with all the Lorna's Laces that I found yesterday. I didn't get the name right yesterday. It is Angelika's Yarn Store at 1975 SW first AV, Suite L - right near the Lovejoy fountain. I won't be making it to the Flock and Fiber Fest after all this year, so what's the point of saving money when the Swirls is on sale? I bought Tickled Pink in DK weight for $6 a skein. (Happy dances, happy dances) and two skeins of Baby Alpaca Chunky in Plum because DH says I need a pair of really warm house socks.

Then we drove up to Northwest Portland and found the new Lush store. I needed another bottle of Dadd-o shampoo which is purple colored and gives my silver curls and added luster. And on the way back to the car we passed a hat shop where Dh talked me into buying a darling new hat. Quite 1920s chic and fair game for any ammount of dressing up! From there, we were off to Powell's City of Books - cook book and two local hiking guides for him, and a couple of Robert Aspirin's Myth books for me. "Have you ever checked to see if they have any of your books?" he asked. It had never occourred to me to look. I'm on the shelf at Powell's!! Sanna, Sorceress Apprentice is being sold as a used book there. I was very excited, and a young woman in the same aisle looked interested so DH gave her a card with the other books listed on it. She was looking over Sanna as we walked away. Squeeeee!!

After that, we went to Kenny and Zuke's Deli where I had a grilled cheese sandwich because they are pretty high point, but there are no points on your anniversary. Did you know that? Kyle told me, so it must be so.

Now we are resting up, and tonight we are going out for dinner with friends. And there are STILL two more days left in the weekend. Is life great or what?

Thursday, July 22, 2010

photo-heavy posting

Roxie said we would have a good time downtown, and believe me, we had so much fun it shouldn't be sheep-legal! She wanted me to see some of the fountains with which Portland is so richly endowed. We started with this little splasher in the south end of downtown. It wasn't much more than hip-high on a short cowboy, and I've gotta say, I wasn't impressed.

A few blocks furthe north, though, and we found the real deal. This is the Lovejoy Fountain, and it's got a lot going for it!

See where the water cascades down on the left side. Roxie and I climbed up there and enjoyed the view.

It was actually quite exciting to be perched up above so much falling water. And it sounded - I could have sat there for the rest of the day and just listened to all the different sounds the water was making. but we had places to go and people to meet.

Several blocks further north is the Ira Kellerman fountain, also known as the Forecourt fountain. When we got there, we found that they had just experienced a pump failure, and the water was not doing its waterfall imitations. But Roxie knew how to take complete advantage of that.

Naughty girl that she is, she knows a hidey hole behind the waterfall where she used to be able to go sneak a kiss. Without the waterfall, though, there's no hiding at all. That's me in the left corner of the bench. Click to embiggen.

On our way further north to yet another fountain, we met these three cheerful and friendly people. They are, reading left to right, Morgan, Merlin and - I really have to apologize but with those other two, the young man should have been named Arthur, and I just can't remember his real name. Sir, my profoundest apologies!

This is the Salmon Street Springs. On hot days, Roxie tells me, children frolic gleefully in the water. And a few grownups as well.

While we were getting pictures of the fountain, this young person came over and joined us. We had a bit of a romp and a giggle under the father's watchful eye, then Roxie escorted the child back to the parental unit, and we went on our way. No names were exchanged.

Next to the Pioneer Courthouse Postoffice are a series of fountains with animal sculptures. Ducks for example.

And seals. These nice bronze sculptures have very shiny heads from being stroked affectionately by passersby.

Here is a beaver that has escaped from the fountain. I wonder if the tree feels nervous with that beaver hovering so toothily close?

On the other side of the block arre more animals in fountains. This young lady is sitting on the head of a bear. She and her sister and mother are from Germany and visiting Portland for 3 months. Wow, what adventures they must be having! The girls don't speak any English, but Mom got along quite well.

This is called the Teacher's Fountain. Looks like a nice place to soak your hot, tired hooves.

We were meeting LG for lunch and were just a bit early, so we stepped into an art supply store to see what mischief we could get into. I posed with the little people.

Then, as we were leaving, we found a picture of my alter-ego, Ramses the First! Good likeness, don't you think?

Lunch with LG was so much fun that we forgot to take pictures. How do you like them apples?

In front of the Heathman Hotel, Josh agreed to pose with me.

And Roxie insisted that my fountain tour was not complete without visiting one of the "Benson's Bubblers." An early city father noticed that on a hot day, there was nowhere for a thirsty man to get a drink except in a tavern. He reasoned that he could greatly alleviate public drunkeness by providing public drinking fountains, and proceeded to do so. The handsome brass drinking fountains are now maintained by the city and continue to refresh citizens and visitors a hundred years later.

Walking back to the car, we paused again by the Lovejoy Fountain where I met Giovanna, a friendly and helpful young lady who offered to take our photo. Roxie dragooned her into posing instead. Thank you Giovanna!

And then, we found a new yarn store! They have - gird your loins - all of Lorna's Laces colorways in all the weights and even 7 colorways which are available nowhere else. Really! Roxie has been trying to purge the stash, and to save some money for the Flock and Fiber Fest in September, and there was Lorna's Laces Swirl Chunky on sale for $10 a skein, marked down from $21. Roxie went mad.

I decided to wallow in the insanity myself. Oooo. Ahhhhhh. Merino and silk. Yessssss!

Now, after my splendid walkabout in downtown Portland, it's time for me to pack my bags and travel to Tennessee.

Bucky reports

Bucky Merino, your roving ramporter here posing with the fruit of the Oregon state flower - Oregon Grape. Suitable for rather a nice jelly, but a bit tart to eat fresh. And the leaves, being quite prickly, tend to irritate the gums and tongue. I hate getting scratched up while I'm eating.
Roxie took me to work with her today. She administered GED tests at the county jail. Unfortunately, photos were not allowed, and since I didn't have the proper clearance, i wasn't allowed into the jail itself. But the jail is in a semi-rural area, and Roxie left the window cracked, so I could listen to the birds and feel the fresh air. It has been quite pleasant around here, weather-wise, but I understand that a great deal of the nation is suffering. I will soon be on my way to Tennessee, so I am enjoying our cool damp weather while I can.

When she had finished the tests, we took a walk around campus where there is quite a lot of art scattered about. Here is a sculpture of - well, it looks like a rock wearing a polished belt. I'm not sure what makes this art, but it certainly is nicely done.

Here we see a metal pteradactyle hanging in the trees. Interesting, amusing, but is it art?

In the formal gallery is an exhibit of paintings inspired by aerial views of landscapes, trying to portray how mankind tries to establish order and pattern, and entropy breaks it down. OK, if this is art, and commands a big price tag . . .

Is this art, too? It portrays - oh, let's say it portrays the sheep's hatred of fences and restraints, and the ever-powerful way nature overcomes artificial boundaries and superceedes the will of mankind to control and compartmentalize. What'll you pay for this?
(Yes, Roxie has finished a third comforter. The woman is driven!!)
Today, Roxie will be taking me downtown to show me some of the city's fountains, then I'm on my way to visit the Tennessee Weavers. Film at eleven. This is Bucky Merino, signing off for the day.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Blue too

Knit Tech asked how I do these so fast. First of all, it's random. You just select the color palatte, tear your fabric into strips that are six inches wide, scramble them up, sew them end to end, to end, to end. Finally, cut the strip to the length of your filler, and sew them RANDOMLY side by side.

Annnnnnd, do it again on the other side. Zip, zap
quick as that. I had a lot of the strips sewed together yesterday - end to end to end - so it was even easier to do two sides of another comforter today.

Monday, July 19, 2010

seams monochromatic

I got a new book on tape and settled into the zen zone today. The brain follows the story, the eyes and fingers put fabrics together. I worked for about 8 hours with a couple bathroom breaks and a salad lunch. And voila!
And more to come. Charlain Harris - "Dead in the Family" The True Blood TV series is a trashy, tacky unfortunate version of the books. All sex and gore and nothing of the relationships and interpersonal dynamics.The books are good, have plot, and engaging characters, and occasional hot vampire sex which is incidental to the story. There are a few chapters still to go, and then I have a couple other recorded books that I won't mind listening to while I sew on. I aim to clear a box out of the stash!!

knit in the dark

DH, because he indulges me shamefully, took me to see "The Sorcerer's Apprentice" yesterday, and I thoroughly enjoyed it! It was a Disney film, so the good guys won and the bad guys were occasionally comically inept, (though the good guys were also funny.) Nicholas Cage played the sort of sensative, suffering hero he does so well, looking much like a wealthy wino with a heart of gold. The girl playing his love interest was astoundingly lovely. The young sweethearts were Mousketeer perky, and the scene from Fantasia was pretty much lost on most of the audience because they weren't old enough to remember Mickey Mouse doing the same thing.
I started to cast on in the car on the way, and joined the work in the dark. And oops. I twisted the work. About two inches along I noticed it.
So this is what happens when you just correct the twist and carry on. You get a little twist or tuck or pleat or what-have you. A "Design Element." The hat is perfectly wearable, and I got to continue knitting briskly along in the dark. I made good progress. Yet another hat for Medical Team International, to help people get well by keeping them warm. Nice soft Merino around the ears and forehead, and mohair for the crown.
Today, I sew. Wish me well!!

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Bucky Merino's saturday morning.

Here we are, ready to go on our walk to Sully's restaurant. Roxie, her Dear Husband, known to you as DH, and me, the one and only Bucky Merino, roving ramporter. The time was 8AM, the weather was cool and cloudy and as you can see, the verdure was flourishing.

Wehadn't gotten very far along before DH stopped to greet a neighborhood cat named Charlie. DH is very kind to all animals, but he has a particularly tender spot for cats and sheep. So he introduced me to Charlie the cat.

I'm not too sure about Charlie, because the first thing he did was try to nibble on my ear. I'm just not that kind of sheep!

As we continued on our walk, we saw many attractive homes, flowers, birds, yadayadayada. Borrrrring. We passed this hamburger stand which Roxie says is a local landmark and a center for vintage car cruise-ins. Whatever that means. Sheep really aren't too interested in cars.

Breakfast was a pleasure. Roxie shared her oatmeal with me and Kyle gave me some oof his coffee. I flirted with two little girls while their parents finished their breakfasts.

Then we walked back. Here's DH consorting with yet another cat. They do seem to like him.

We passed this very tidy paddock on the way. Roxie says it's a landscaped garden, but I could see it had lots of herbs growing in it as well. Still, it's sadly missing in grass. Well, perhaps that will come in time.

That was our walk. Whoopdedoo. I am most grateful to you folks who have offered to let me come and visit, and Roxie and I are discussing that plan. She wants to take me on a tour of some of the fountains downtown, then we will see about travel arrangements.

Friday, July 16, 2010

She had the best of intentions.

Roxie promised me a trip to work with her, and I was rarin' to go frist thing in the morning. I even offered to drive the car, but Roxie pointed out that I couldn't reach the pedals, so I settled myself comfortably in the passenger seat and awayy we went. That seat was so comfortable that I sort of fell asleep, and when I woke, the car was parked, Roxie was gone, and I was all alone. She says she got to thinking about work and by the time she parked, she had completely forgotten about me. Is that supposed to make me feel cheerier about sitting in a closed car for 8 hours? I ask you!

But she apologized very nicely and promised to take me with her when she met with her friend DJ who has just returned from Paris, and since I am a forgiving sort of ram anyway, and Roxie really does TRY, I forgave her.

DJ had books from the many places she had visited in Paris. She stayed very close to the loovre. I thought she had a touch of the tourist quickstep and was saying she had to saty close to the loo, but she explained the the loovre is a big art gallery with more pictures than you can shake a stick at, and sculptures and lots of other stuff. She showed us her favorites in one of her books. They were right purty!
Then Roxie and DJ talked girl talk until I fell asleep again. Roxie lives a pretty boring life, I can tell you. She said I can walk to Sully's with her and DH tomorrow and maybe we'll see some ducks. Whoop de doo. I've seen ducks already in my life. I've seen all the ducks I ever needed to see. The herb farm where I grew up used ducks and geese to help maintain the plantings. They ate weeds and slugs and bugs, and raised a big rucus if anyone even thought about wandering into the basil beds for a little mid-afternoon snack. Ducks are not my favorite peeople. But, I suppose it beats sitting around the backyard, watching the hostas wilt.
I really am needing an adventure of some type. Anyone have any suggestions?

Thursday, July 15, 2010

blooming idiot

I got nothing, but still want to check in and say hi. So here's some lilies for your eye candy and smiles and hugs just for you!

Last night, when DH went to take a shower, I switched the chanel to the Cake Off - a reality (sort of) show where three teams have 9 hours to construct and decorate a five-ft tall cake which is then judged on flavor,technical difficulty, and customer satisfaction. When DH returned from the shower I handed over the remote and said, "I know you don't especially enjoy these shows. You don't have to watch something you hate on your own TV."

"It's OUR TV." he told me. Then he smirked and said, "But it's MY remote." I do love him. He makes me laugh all the time!! We watched Jeopardy.

I'm hoping to take Bucky to work with me today, so we may have a report from your roving ramporter soon.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Sewing again

I have the sewing machine out again and fabric scattered hither and yon. A great deal of yon as the kitties play with it. The flamingo blanket is done and some scraps have thrown themselves together into a five foot strip. Then I had to go to work. I'm working all day today and most of tomorrow. No complaints. The pay is most welcome. And the enforced pauses builds up a good head of steam for more sewing. Brace for more qilts in the future. The fat quarters that Benita sent me are really agitating for construction time. We hit an estate sale, and I got five pink sheets for $2 apiece. Obviously I gotta make a pink quilt right away!!

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

tracking Lulu

Lulu has become a soccer fan. Here she is at a World Cup Party.

As usual, she manages to acquire another goody from her adoring fans. She's a stylin' lamb!

Monday, July 12, 2010

Mmmmmonday or, can a title be more boring?

On Sunday, after running errands, DH and I parked about half a mile away from a restaurant and walked to lunch. Very pleasant. The pub we chose was playing the World Cup for about ten enthusiastic fans. The drone of those vuvuzelas really IS annoying. But the food was good and the service was commendable so we had no real cause for complaint. Then a nice stroll back to the car to feel virtuous for the rest of the day.

I got my next does of exercise virtue in this morning. LG said I was welcome to harvest the lavender in her front yard, so, to beat the heat, I got over there before she had even left for work. She told me to take it all, so I did. I have four baskets of lavender sitting on the air registers in our house, drying out. The house smells divine!!

And since I was already in tidy-it-up mode, I went out and cleared out our two raised beds, filling an entire 33 gallon yard debris can thereby. My back is already grumbling.

I get to go to work for 14.5 hours this week. Whoop, whoop! There's so much to be said for being gainfully employed.

Knitting, of course, goes on. I am using up scraps. The cuff is fairly scratchy, but the part of the hat that will be against the forehead is a cashmere blend.

Waste not, want not.

Saturday, July 10, 2010

The n way of tea

Nice, Asian sort of illustration for the titile, doncha think?

Now you're all prepped for the elegance of a proper tea ceremony. Well, I'm reading a silly book by Robert Asprin and in it the heroine performs The Way of Cake which involves a strictly formatted birthday party with pin the tail on the dragon games and the proper Cake with the proper frosting and only one scoop of the

properly made ice-cream - and the cake is cut with a sacred silver cake-server. A Nineteenth level master can cut a Cake into 19 perfectly even portions.

And all this is to explain that I am much taken with the phrase, "The Way of Cake" and may employ it myself in future. Today's festivity was much less formulaic.

I used glass plates and cups today. Light, cool and airy. With blue napkins to pick up the little blue flowers in the cutwork cloth.

I dished out a serving of cake to everyone before they got here so I wouldn't be stuck with a whole angelfood cake that everyone else had the strength to resist. Because I can't resist angelfood.

I also got and sliced up a Sin-Dog from Dave's Killer Bakery. So here we are, with sinfully happy expressions - Linda, Linda, Merilee

Maggie, Pat and Phyllis.

Sin-dogs are to cinnabons as Jack LaLanne is to Arnold Schwartzennagger: They're smaller, healthier and more substantative. Unlike Jack, they are also a good source of omega-3 oils.

Linda brought Gingeroos, with bits of ginger bbaked into the cookie itself. Oh, YUM!

Maggie brought cherries which she herself pitted. I usually just let people spit. and she brought them in her grandmother's bowl which is a beautiful green and white porcelain made in china with a dragon in the bottom. I wish I had gotten a photo.

Pat brought sliced cantelope. It was yummy. OK guys. This is not a potluck. Enough with bringing the food, no matter how delicious it is. I make too much as it is, and this is MY party!!

That's iced tea in the wine and pilsner glasses. Just the ticket for these steamy days - but DH fixed the air conditioner last night (it was a blown fuse) and things are nice and comfy cool in here today.

Oh, and some knitting has gone on. Using up the ends of little balls, I made another child's cap.