Sunday, December 5, 2021

Retreat Day Four -- One SMALL step at a time

Have you ever looked at a task as a whole and just about fainted because of what you have taken on? Oh yes -- that can be the most daunting thing in the world. How will I ever walk the equivalent of the distance across Canada? How will I ever finish these UFOs? The whole thing looks too much, and we fall off the wagon. 

I want to show you what happens when you take one small step at a time. You MUST keep that end goal in the back of your mind, but you can't let it get you down. 

Even though I'm at the retreat, my waistline isn't on vacation. My body just loves sweets and if I overeat, well, think of it this way: calories in, but no calories out -- my body isn't going to be too happy. So I was back out walking yesterday and managed to get over 12 KM in. I feel terrific about that -- it helps my mental health, not only my physical health!!

And by taking those steps every day, this is what happened. 

I'm now less than 100 KM from my end goal. Since January 1, 2020, I've walked 8,281.3 KM. When I started almost two years, I felt the task was impossible, but step by step - it happened. I've developed a NEW positive habit in my life, and there's no going back! I'll be the one who will drive the nursing home staff crazy as I race up and down the hallways with my walker. 

Now you don't need to be as ambitious as I am. You may not have the ability, nor the time. But perhaps you can set a goal of ONE KM (or mile) a day. Or maybe, you meditate for 5 minutes every day. We NEED to clear our minds of those damn screens at least part of the day. Between dogs and errands and just plain old mind-clearing, I feel like in seventh heaven. This is HUGE!!! 

The second "miracle" is this. 

The bed runner

This is what the bed runner looked like last night. It's a bit more together this morning -- yep  - I've been up for hours and quiet as a mouse in the house!!  I am NOT going home until it's in one piece. Thankfully, I've made good progress this morning, and that will be very doable and well before my scheduled departure. 

I remember at the last retreat that I finished the last seam right when I had scheduled to leave. I'm slightly ahead of schedule. That is a HUGE accomplishment, and I'm thrilled, to say the least. It's a UFO and a nasty one. Let's just say that I've had my fill of curved seams for a while. 

I didn't get to the other four projects I brought with me, but I'm just fine with that. It just shows that you can do ANYTHING if you put your mind to it. Trust me, I didn't want to do this - well, part of me did, and part of me did NOT. I didn't go shopping -- I don't need anything. I didn't get sidetracked by what the others were working on -- it was slow and steady with LOTS of breaks in between!!!

It appears that I can't count. Well, I didn't count -- I just made pieces for the papers I had with me. And this is what is leftover. Not enough to do anything with, but I'll figure out something to do with them. 

Extra bits

And I'm not being picky about matching that one seam in the center; however, if your seam allowances are good, this is what happens. Now, this is NOT every block, but enough to make me happy. 

Points match

This is the same block -- just the other end. Yep -- I can live with that. 

The other point in the block

Here's the latest on the Postcards from Sweden quilt. It's gorgeous with all those colors, but I think it would take half the time (or even less) to randomly sew those half square triangles together. 

Postcards from Sweden

And yes, like many people, we bought lottery tickets for the big draw the other night, but we didn't win the big one, although I think we won a free ticket. Next time -- we'll win next time!!!!  It's funny because we all want more money, but when I was out for a walk the other day and "dreaming" about how I would spend my share of the winnings, I really couldn't think of anything that I would want. Oh yes -- we all want to pay off the mortgage or bills or do some renovations, but there wasn't really one burning item that I would buy. 

Our lottery tickets

There is usually ONE item that everyone covets to make during any retreat. This time, a tea towel that cleverly fits over the stove handle. Someone was supposed to send me a photo of the finished tea towels on the stove, but they forgot. Not going to mention any names, Ronda!

Anyway, the instructions were on a video, and I don't know how many times I heard that video playing yesterday!! Here are the girls listening to the next set of instructions so they can get to work. 

Listening to a how-to video

In total, the group (but not me) made 24 of them. Paula made 10!!!  I'll have a picture tomorrow. I swear, there are NO tea towels left in this town. 

The weather has been bizarre, and I've been lucky in timing my walks, so the temperature has been very nice, although a bit windy at times. 

Here's one of the clouds from yesterday. This was the view from my sewing table. We called it a snow tornado, but I'm sure it was just the cloud. Anyway -- pretty cool. 

Snow tornado

Thanks to Karen and Helen Anne, who are way smarter than I am, I realized that we are very close to the Bruce Trail, which I want to walk in person! So Susan and I got in the car to check it out. It's too far away to walk too, but only a five-minute drive by car and probably less if you go the back road which we know how to get to. 

We stopped at the first parking lot. OK -- we see NO markers or signs. But we saw a little path leading off the parking lot. OH BOY -- this leads down a steep path to a small river. I don't think this is the Bruce Trail. 

A river near the parking lot

Across the road, we spotted another trail, so we went in that direction. Hmm -- it doesn't seem to be the Brue Trail either, but we got a good view of the parking lot! After our investigation, we think this upper trail is the backway to get to the Bruce Trail -- or should I say, one of the side trails leading to the main Bruce Trail. 

The parking area for the trails

Then we checked one of the other trailheads. Yep -- this is definitely the Bruce Trail. Well, at least it was a side trail to the main trail. Some small loops that would make good hikes. Sadly, we didn't check this out earlier - I won't get to it today, but we'll be back before you know it!!

Side loop to the Bruce Trail

And we saw a sign explaining all the blazes -- I've never seen that before so this was great. 

Explanation of the blazes for the trail

We drove to the third and final parking spot in the area, and this is Bruce Trail all the way. Here I am, standing beside the sign. 
Me beside the Bruce Trail marker

Thanks to Karen and Helen Anne for alerting me to this. You bet I'll be back and off on a Bruce Trail hike the next time I'm here. 

There is also a rail trail south of the town, so I'd like to check that out. I hate to get in the car to go for a walk, so I can walk on the road or get in the car and have a peaceful walk. Either way -- new stuff to check out!!! 

Sadly, today is our last day, and it's time to pack up the cars and go our separate ways. But after five days, I think we'll all be anxious to get home. I'm sure Murphy and Lexi are missing me - well, maybe not me, but they will be missing their walk!!

As the new year is approaching, remember the goal-setting I set out a couple of days ago. And remember that everything and anything is doable by ANYBODY  - it just won't happen overnight. You must plan, and practice, and be patient. DO NOT give up!!!

Have a great day!!!



  1. YES! We can do anything. One of my grand-nephews graduated High School in June. This spring I had planned his grad quilt. He is a self-taught guitar player (at age 10) and in a rock band. When in Nashville 2y ago, I saw a guitar quilt hanging in a quilt shop and asked for the pattern.

    So, this kid is getting a guitar quilt. I bought all the fabrics this spring. But oh my all those flippy corners? Well, I came up to the mountains Friday determined to get this quilt made. Saturday morning I cut and cut and cut. And then I sewed and sewed and sewed. Any idea how many flippy corners are in a guitar let alone 12 of them? When I stopped last night at 730 I had just 48 flippy corners left!!!!😂😂 All those sewn were trimmed and pressed.

    I am so excited that this project is coming together so quickly. I thought it would be a 4-5 day project and now I think it will be together today and ready for some border decisions.

    Congrats on your beautiful bed runner. It is coming together fabulously!

    Happy Sunday and happy stitching to you😊

    1. Wow!!!!! FLippy corners!!! That's a LOT of flippy corners! I can't wait to see the quilt finished and I bet your grand nephew is going to love it as well.

      Its' amazing what we can do when we put our minds to it.
      Have a super day!

    2. I put a pic in email to you.

  2. You should get a Bruce Trail Handbook. I used one for years with maps of the different parts of the trail, including side trips. Dad & I would get Mom to drop us off somewhere and pick us us somewhere else. We had the times figured out quite well. This is also a safety item, as if you don't show up in a reasonable time, the recue people can be called out to find you if you are hurt or lost. Travelling with a companion is safer, but it is still good to let someone else know where you are going and what time you will be back.

    1. YES --- I do have a version from about 3 years ago. I just never realized we were that close to the darn thing and YES -- I do want to walk it. I need a support vehicle. You were lucky to have someone to help you out. I need some planning time! Thanks for the information.

  3. I found your blog thru an eBay group post. I can't wait to try the fabric basket -- your tutorial looks so easy!
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