Wednesday, May 25, 2022

The cutter bug

What can I say besides the fact that we are so relaxed here that -- if we don't get any sewing done - who cares? We didn't spend quite so much time at the dinner table, but we had other things we needed to get done! 

We are all sleeping like babies here. Since some babies don't sleep well, is that a good expression to use? But it's so darn peaceful here; I could stay here forever. In my case, it's likely peaceful because Lexi and Murphy are not here! But then I miss their furry antics, so I'll be happy to go home, but not until tomorrow! I love the small retreats (we are four), as they are so relaxing and calm and peaceful!

I know the trees that fell in our forest are NOTHING compared to some of the damage around the province, but I wanted to share some things about them with you. 

So this small tree crashed to the ground, and rightly so since it looked like a dead one. No big deal, the girls jumped over this one, no problem. 

MOM -- what's this tree here for? Now I have to JUMP over it - I hate jumping!

Another tree crashed into another one and never made it to the ground. How did I see that? The leaves were very dark in one spot as the two treetops collided. 

The top of this tree crashed

Another dead tree fell across the path, but I didn't get a picture of it. 

And then there was this HUGE maple tree that fell across the path. 

A significant tree came down

I love to look at things in detail, so Murphy and I got close to where the trunk broke off. WOW  -- my first thought was, no wonder the tree fell as the inside was hollow. 

The inside was hollow

This was the other part lying on the ground, and it was also hollow. Hmm -- that's weird. 

The other part of the tree is also hollow

The tree's center had literally been sucked out of it, or the bark had separated from it. Parts of the tree were ground up into sawdust. I suspect it was a diseased tree, and the wind broke it apart on the weak spots. 

There's the center of the tree

All this came from the center of the tree. The tree was in full leaf, so it didn't look sick. 

Lots of sawdust from the center of the tree

It brought several other trees down with it, and look what happened to the bark on this tree. It literally split wide open! It was almost like someone sliced it with a knife. 

The bark split open o this tree

And several other trees were broken when the big tree hit them. 

Trees that got bent or broken

What's weird is that neither of these following two trees, ready to topple, was affected by the storm. The squirrels live in this tree, and it's literally hanging by a thread - the center is pretty much gone, but it's still standing. 

This is literally a shell of a tree

And what about this one -- the center is gone, and one massive branch remains, but it's still standing. 

This tree is hanging by a thread

Mother Nature makes weird decisions about what is ready to go and what gets to stay. This small tree on the street over from us also went. So you see, compared to other pictures you saw online, this was NOTHING, but it's always traumatic for me to see a live tree go down. 

A small tree in our neighborhood went down

The fungi are already growing in the forest, and I spotted these guys the other day. 


And it doesn't take long for people to create a path around that fallen tree. I suspect when I get home that all the trees will have been dealt with. I'm sure the city had quite the job dealing with all the trees that needed to be cut down or trimmed. 

A new path around the tree

It's early in the season for storms, let's pray that there won't be any more, but that's like praying we won't get more sunshine. It's going to happen. 

And now, back to the retreat. What happened? 

I was back at work on my Long Time Gone. I had brought my grey scrap box languishing on the floor in that area where all the sew-alongs are stored. I was determined to make the borders from the scrap box. I sorted the fabrics out, and I had an idea. 

The grey scrap box

This is part of the border. 

Part of the border for Long Time Gone

I wasn't sure how much border I needed to prepare because who can be bothered to measure! So I was down to small pieces like this, but they got incorporated into my border strips. 

Cutting up the small pieces for the border

Phew  -- I cut all that I could from the scrap box. Then they got sewn together, and it took me almost ALL day to get that border on, but it's on! I'm thrilled with the results, and I'm delighted that Long Time is Gone is done!

Ready to sew the border together

So that means that THREE of the four Jen Kingwell quilts are done! That's a miracle! I'm afraid I'm not going to show it to you as I want to save it for the reveal for the class. Then you'll get to see it. 

Did I have enough pieces? You bet -- I had about 80" of the scrappy border left over -- oops -- thankfully, it didn't take long to create. Loads!! There was no need to worry! I love making things up as I go along, and if you've been good, the world will treat you well, and you'll always have plenty!

Then we spent a significant part of the afternoon playing with the digital cutter. It seems that we have all got the cutter bug! One of the ladies brought her Silhouette Cameo, and we had fun doing a project. We each got to make one, and I'm waiting for a group shot before posting what we did. 

The Silhouette Cameo

It involved some messy hands, so much excitement that I forgot my shoes, a bit of mad shopping, and a WHOLE lot of learning. What's so fun is that it became a collaborative effort, and we learned from each other. That's the best thing ever. 

Where are your shoes? 

But here's the thing --- has anyone shopped for freezer paper lately? I went to FOUR stores yesterday and found NOTHING. I did find something that we were able to use as a substitute, and it worked like a charm, but it doesn't really replace freezer paper! We did a Google search and found a box online at THAT store for $25!!!!  

So if you have a box (or two or three) at home, don't keep it out in the open when friends are over -- it's precious! 

My bag of finished projects, or at least finished for here, is now full. I'll walk it to the car today - one less bag to take when we pack up tomorrow. 

My bag of completed projects

I have TWO remaining projects to work on today and tomorrow. There are a few small bags of odds and ends in the bag -- mostly half-square triangles that need to be trimmed or sewn. So I think I packed very well. That's only taken 10+ years, and how many retreats? This is my fifth time here, but there've been many retreats before and I envision many more in the future. 

What I have left to sew 

My workstation is full of the next project. I started last night, but none of us are super productive, but we're getting stuff done, and that's all that counts. 

My workspace is a bit messier than yesterday

Remember when I worked on this at the last retreat? I'm determined to get one more panel done at this retreat. I don't seem to be making a dent in the stack of precut squares, but since I'm down to one bag, not two, I guess I'm making a dent, but it doesn't seem like it. 

My flannel square project

There are no extra projects planned today, and no running around is necessary. I cooked dinner last night, so today is all about sewing, although I have to walk back to the grocery store. I was there three times yesterday and still forgot to buy ONE banana for breakfast tomorrow. Good grief! 

Be sure to check out QUILTsocial as well as I continue to make my fidget quilts. 

There is a virtual retreat this weekend. I can hardly wait!! I'm not sure what I'll be working on -- OH -- I have some labels and quilt sleeves to hand stitch, and I might do that, or I might save those for sitting outside later this summer. I'll check it out when I get home! BE sure to stop by and say hi. It's going to be loads of fun -- it always is. Or get yourself organized and sew along with us. Some people mentioned that they think their sewing machines are noisy. NOPE -- we haven't had that issue with anyone! 

Here are the links

Saturday -- May 28  -- starts at 6 PM. 

Join Zoom Meeting Meeting ID: 892 5423 3911 Passcode: 982797

Sunday - May 29 -- starts at 10 AM.

Join Zoom Meeting Meeting ID: 816 9371 7518 Passcode: 579285

OH -- on a sad note, Harriet Hargrave recently passed away. She was only 69, which is so young. I took a machine quilting class from her many years ago, and she was a pioneer in getting people to accept machine quilting as acceptable. And I loved her accent -- "washed" in her accent sounded like worshed, and I loved it. RIP Harriet -- you will be missed in the industry.

On that note, I'm out of here!!! 

Have a super day!!!!


1 comment:

  1. I too had a lot of trouble finding freezer paper last year when I needed it. I ended up getting some at a Home Hardware store. Not all stores had it and some staff looked at me like I was nuts when I asked for it, but I did eventually find it. I think it was about $5 a box for 50' of Reynolds.