Tuesday, October 14, 2014

recently

our guild's annual quilt show
mini quilt for silent auction


and one of 3 I entered 


tail end of eclipse



and moon rise 12 hours later


gem of a church on St. Mary's Ridge Cashton, WI  that hosted a most enjoyable concert



on a newly restored 100+ year old instrument


we discovered they say a Latin mass every Sunday at noon... now that would be a treat for both of us.

drying and shelling beans for winter meals


checking out the town's harvest festival



keeping an eye on the beauties just outside my window


a week of blessings 

Sunday, October 5, 2014

Hello, October

Snow yesterday


which melted as soon as the sun shown.
Then later preparing for a predicted frost by picking all we could and covering the tenders



and early this morning the house temperature falling below 60 and jump starting the furnace despite our determination to resist so early in the season.
Yesterday apple upside down cakes from some of the last of our windfall apples to be delivered to two neighbors who've been in the hospital.


And in the moments between, despite promises to myself not to, having to rush with projects for our guild's upcoming quilt show



Ah, October.


Sunday, September 28, 2014

a play day

Jerome treated me to a day out for my birthday. We agreed on Dubuque, Iowa with stops along the return trip. Our weather couldn't have been more agreeable.

First stop, an all volunteer garden that just keeps getting better as the years pass.


That sweet husband of mine asked one of the gift shop volunteers to take our picture. On the way back into the shop I told her it was my birthday and my husband was treating me.  She told me I was probably quite a bit younger than she. Her guess at my age was 47! I told her I had applied for Medicare recently and that we'd been married for 42 years.
We had lunch at Vinny Vanucchi's  Little Italy on Main street in the old downtown. Absolutely divine. Jerome: chicken marsala, me: fettuccine seafood.

Then an attempt at riding what is described as the "shortest, steepest scenic railway",  but alas, it was down for repairs. It would have provided a stunning panorama of the Mississippi and a view of 3 states. Fun just to glimpse from below.


Just up the street there was Yarn Soup. I was on the hunt for Tunisian crochet hooks. So hard not to stroke every fiber in the place. One of those shops, where if you worked there by the end of the week you'd have little left of your pay.
My buddy Mary had recommended we stop at the new co-op in town. We did but agreed our co-op is still the best.

Along the road home Jerome's eagle eye spotted a billboard for a quilt shop in the town of Fennimore. We were charmed by the town but I was delighted with the quilt shop, The Quilt Peddler. Only 18 months old, it is beautiful, spacious, fully stocked and a joy to visit. Though 50 miles from home, it is definitely going to be a destination.
In Dickeyville we walked the grounds of Holy Ghost parish which contains the Dickeyville Grotto. It's actually called the Dickeyville Grotto, but I have a hard time calling a town Dickeyville, let alone what appears to be a pilgrim destination. In the mid morning as we drove past it on our way to Dubuque it was crowded with people, women in dresses, men in slacks.






We stopped for an ice cream in Lancaster and a quick shopping in Gatherings in Boscobel, a gift shop with a tiny but good quilt shop tucked in back. Good to get home in time to close up the chickens for the night and lavish attention on the cats who wondered why they were alone all day.

Thank you Jerome.

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

sunrise on my last day of being 64

Looking east:



looking west


I've promised myself some improvements to my daily habits in my new year ahead. Already I've been rewarded.
And another thing….. for the past year I've had a specific Beatles tune running through my head nearly daily. Can I change that now??

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

autumnal equinox

This evening summer will slip away. I'm not in the least sad about this. I am deeply rooted to the American midwest and love all four seasons. I vibrate with the cycle as each season shifts, sometimes with quiet subtlety.



It has become a tradition, standing in the middle of our road looking west as the sun sinks to the horizon on the last day of summer. A way to honor Mother Nature's rhythms, so deeply a part of my own.
And the night sky is amazingly new now, stars and planets moving into view.
It's sweater weather,  steaming mugs of tea, soup on the stove, bread in the oven. Wishing you the joys of autumn.


Thursday, September 11, 2014

whatever happened to what's her name?

The discussion at a Rogaland Rosemaling class with Ruth Green this week went something like this: "I wish I could retire so I'd have time for everything I want to do."  "That's what I used to think. I'm retired now but I don't have time for anything anymore." "You've got that right!" "Man, is that ever true!"
The dream that woke me early this morning was my brain's way of saying, "Enough already, girl. Time to slow down or else."
So, the desk is nearly cleared, the lists are written for my trip back to the city for a family event I can't miss this weekend (what to bring, stops to make along the way and while I'm there, birthday gifts and canned goods to share, etc.) the laundry is started, library items organized, garden produce mostly processed, time for a bit of the county fair in town… I think you've got the idea.
Just a quick visual idea of some of the things that kept me joggin' since my last post:

Quilt Expo, Madison:




Last year's best of show was awarded to Betty Ekern Suiter. Just an example of how interesting life can be, I sat with Paula Ekern at the rosemaling class. Betty, this world renowned quilter, is her sister-in-law!

harvesting and processing garden bounty (freezing, canning, pickling):


surprise overnight visitors (Jerome's two brothers and nephew) out for  "ride" on their bikes:



a class at the local quilt shop, Rapid Fire Hunters Star, a single finished block done in class and then a second done at home and joined to the first while I still remembered how to use the fancy ruler



Jerome's new B, a John Deere 1947 B


my new B, a Bernina 750QE with stitch regulator so I can do free motion quilting and have every stitch be uniform (well that's the theory, anyway!)



a time or two that I remembered to stop and take a photo of the beauty that is every where around me:

a rainbow caught just as the sun was setting


And that cute photo of our little Mya on the header??? She knows how to take cozy time. Thanks for the example, dear one.

Monday, August 4, 2014

august:

adjective… inspiring reverence or admiration; of supreme dignity or grandeur; majestic.
August, the season of lilies.

Our ridge meadow farm is home to several varieties of lily. From the humble roadside field lily


to the the ephemeral blossoms in our pond.


Just now our brick walk flower bed is bursting forth and the aroma, especially under the stars, is amazing.






I do love all manner of flowers, every season, inside and out, but it is the lily that brings me closest to peace.


And for that reason I chose this piece of art glass as my welcome home gift to myself when we bought the farm. It never fails to center me, to bring hope, to ease.