Bits of everything

G'day all!

Oh what a busy time we've been having here, yet so far we don't have that much to show for it!

Quartermaster Bay, Vashon Island.  Moody and magnificent.

I was away last weekend at the Seattle Modern Quilt Guild retreat.   I was rather concerned before going - I have Food Issues, as regular readers will know.  I couldn't find the power cord and pedal for my sewing machine, noisy and heavy and slow beast that it is... but it is better than nothing!  Also, because of this ongoing issue with my vocal cord, I make interesting noises when I'm asleep and apparently now snore as well.


Sunset.  Pretty!

So the idea of having to share a room was umm, intimidating.  The food issue also intimidating and not having anything to sew on?  DOH!  Then there is the small issue of spending a weekend with people I don't know.  For some people this would be the Best Thing Evah but for an introvert?  It's a form of hell.

As it turned out, I had a perfectly marvellous time.  The food was fine - they are used to catering for people like me - I have quite normal food needs apparently!  The company was lovely - many quilters are fairly introverted, which isn't really surprising I guess because it is a fairly solitary activity (though you can have quilting bees and get togethers and quilters have been known to work on the one quilt in a group).

Low tide was low - high tide pretty much obliterated the beach!

Well my lovely room mates were indeed lovely - one said I could not outsnore or make more noise than her husband and the other normally sleeps with earplugs anyway.  I didn't keep them awake, which was very good.  They had more difficult food needs than me!  It was nice to a) have people who grok how food issues can really screw you around and b) to feel relatively normal.  LOL

I think it looked better dressed in greys - much more moody!

I got to see my quilt hanging up one last time (and, ahem, may have bought some more fabric... sigh)

Big green quilt!

The surroundings and accommodation at Camp Burton on Vashon Island were superb.   We had been told to expect rustic but we got a new "bunkhouse"  with three people to a room and our own en suite, a cleverly laid out en suite with toilet to one side in its own room, shower to the other in its own room and the vanity in the middle.  I have never understood the idea that all three bits have to be in the one room - separating them makes so much more sense.

Avast me hearties!

I think the surroundings speak for themselves, as you have seen above!  Pity I forgot to take the phone down to dawn on the water - it was pretty amazing!

And the sewing machine issue?  I borrowed a machine from someone who could not go - it was wonderful of her to offer it to me when she was a bit sad about not being able to go.  And it worked perfectly all weekend, allowing me to make this:

Riley Blake challenge quilt top,
backing is white white not blue!

I also got to explore Vashon a little.  The previous times I'd been there it was either persisting down or we had run out of daylight.  I found a nifty lighthouse on the adjoining Maury Island, and it turns out that our neighbour here grew up right next door to it!

Point Robinson lighthouse, Maury Island

I timed my drive home to coincide with the start of the Superb Owl.  The local team was playing and I figured that the ferry would be quiet - I think this shot is proof of that:

I have never seen such an empty ferry before.

And I ended up at the neighbours' watching the game.  The Seahawks absolutely slaughtered the Broncos and Seattle erupted.  There were people running around jumping up and down with joy, fireworks and the whole joint was going off.  I didn't go to the parade - the buses were full and it was frigging cold this week - most of it didn't get above fridge temp and we had two or three days that didn't break freezing.

Poor hummers couldn't feed from these!

That'd be ice in the pond there... (MOHAI, Lake Union)

This week we got the agreement from our neighbours saying we could alter the garage, HOORAY!  So I spent a few hours down town over two days to get the agreement recorded and then the permit issued, and DH is going full steam ahead on getting the garage reframed and the new roof done.


Except last night this happened:

Passing on tea on the deck

and it was still quite snowy this morning

My baby!  Covered in snow!

Antler-like snowy branches.


Quite a bit of snow!

and as it turned out it was still snowy late this afternoon, so we spending the day at the garden show instead was a good plan!

First crocuses - I guess they won't

We saw some wonderfully cool things - both of us were rather impressed by some of the garden gates we saw.  They weren't always practical if you were looking to exclude dogs and children from the back yard (excluding cats requires a lot more effort) but gee there were some nice gates.  I told DH if we ever bought one, we'd be taking it home with us - we couldn't leave it behind!

Not our cat on our bed.
She made herself quite at home.
No gate would exclude this cat.
We saw pretty plants and pretty displays, most of which the phone is too crap to capture.

This one was bright!
Saracenias (pitcher plants) were the plant du jour and we saw a heap of Australian plants, some of which would even survive outside in a crappy winter like we've had this month and in December (multiple days of below freezing are not common here).  We brought home a few orchids to torture, though I've got a much better idea of how to look after various of them this time, and I have a couple of things to plant in the yard (PEONIES! And a dahlia.  And a bleeding heart).

Beside the glass bamboo is a
non-critter excluding gate

Now I want to find some echinoderms!

I don't know that a sand dollar will do.

There has been knitting too - I've finished a sock and am working on a couple of other things, including a top that I put down months ago when it started getting cold.  If I finish it, it will free up another set of needles.  I only have about ten rows of sleeve to go so I really should pull my finger out.

Works in progress.
Yes the sock really is lurid.
This week, however, will be devoted to finishing my challenge quilt - I have made a backing for it and now have to find the batting, baste the top, batting and back together then quilt it and bind it, all by Wednesday night!  Oh and also getting my current work module ready for polishing by someone else.  I thought I'd have it done by Friday but then the permit process got in the way... Still it is close and I'll be glad to move on to something else.  After many months of working on the one thing, I've had enough of it.  Time for fresh eyes to find its faults.



  1. Your retreat sounds wonderful, isn't it great to find out you're normal. Snow is so picturesque! Lucky you having crocuses just popping up! The garden sculptures are very cool. I love your lurid sock!!! Oh lovely lurid colours!!

  2. Oh I love your big green quilt and your lurid sock. I find that if I am a bit apprehensive, the outing usually turns out well. Not that this makes me complacent!! Great garage news and snow!!!! I envy you the snow!!


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