Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Travels with Anna....

Lilies from my father's garden..
I am not sure where the summer has gone ... Well that is not quite true.. my days have been full enough with some quilting time, family time, a little cleaning and a bit of local travelling... Since I last posted, I have been away visiting my parents and getting a bit of quilting done.Over the summer, I have read a few novels that included some by Jennifer Wiener, Earlene Fowler( State Fair) and a book called the Knitting Club by Ann Hood. There is a stack sitting on my night table that include "Three Cups of Tea", The Forgotten Garden and Leaving Gee Bend..)

I finally got caught up on my blog reading until my laptop died. I am currently using my husband's machine as we contemplate our next step- the warranty on my computer has just recently run out:(

We travelled the backroads to my parents who live 100 miles south in a city called Red Deer. The city is now about 90 thousand people ,but when I grew up there, it was only around 25 thousand. We have travelled the main highway many times over the past 35 years and it does get a little boring. The traffic is a lot heavier as it is the main corridor between the two largest cities of the province (Edmonton to Calgary)This photo is not too far east from my folks- if you look close you can see the rocky formations of the river bank.
Along the road you often will find what we fondly call Nid Nods. They are oil pumps and they are a common enough site on the drive.
Alberta countryside is sometimes referred to as knob and kettle land. Some parts of the prairies are quite flat but the prairies where I was raised is quite hilly. I loved the fields of canola(rapeseed) when they are yellow and ripe. My grandparents were farmers in the Alberta foothills and their farm was much like this land.

You can see my hand in the mirror taking the photo- It is sort of Escher like (some of Escher's brilliant work happens to be showing at Alberta Gallery of Art along with Looney Tunes) This picture was a fluke but sure was interesting...

When Summer comes, it usually means that I have the opportunity to have a longer visit with my parents. I spent four days with my mom and dad. During the visit we went shopping, visited Tim Horton's for coffee and checked out the local quilt stores. The quilt store trip did not produce any great finds - perhaps just as well, with the cost of a new computer on the horizon.. We visited a family friend, Sherry, who has an old homestead house that she and her husband are renovating. She is a fabulous artist and her home is filled with her beautiful paintings and lots of antiques. The quilt on their bed is one that I made a number of years ago, called Chimneys and Cornerstones.
Her husband Brian is a fabulous woodworker. Don't you love his beautiful sleigh coffee table?

On their property is a Pretty cool antique thrashing machine..

My parents celebrated their 55th wedding anniversary while I was home. To mark the occasion, we took a few pictures of our family. I particularly liked this one of my folks.

This family photo was taken after a celebration dinner that we had to mark the occasion. Unfortunately my husband and son (as well as one niece and her husband) were not able to be there, because they were working. Pictured here are my two brothers, my sister and their partners, along with myself and my parents.

Earlier in the day, I suggested to my folks that we should go and take a photograph of them outside the church where they had been married. We arrived at 2:25 in the afternoon at the approximate time when they would have been leaving the church. They obligingly stood outside the church where they exchanged their vows 55 years earlier.

For those of you who may be wondering if I have been having any quilting adventures... Before I went to my folks, I did get three quilts spray basted so that they are now ready to quilt. My teaching partner and I went to school and used the tables there to lay them out for spraying. Next goal is to find some quilting time... I made a new couch sized convergence quilt that I am very pleased with the results. Some of my summer projects are finally coming together but I have not taken updated photos.
Over the weekend, I took a tessellation quilt workshop- I have some blocks made. We had a bit of excitement during the Friday nite session as the power went out. Quilting by candlelight was somewhat limiting so we headed home about 40 minutes early. Perhaps I should learn how to use my grandmother's treadle machine...LOL

On Saturday, we learned how to make a disappearing 4 patch pattern block. Disappearing 4 patch looks more complicated than it is and is made with charm squares. Hopefully I will get some quilting done by the end of the week and have some new photos to show you.

Next week we are off to the mountains for a few days. We are going to Jasper which is a beautiful spot. My husband is hoping for clear skies so that he can see lots of meteors during the Perseids meteor showers.. The summer is moving along too fast-
I officially return to the classroom on August 30 and there will be school things to do before that time. The time does pass all too quickly..

Happy travels and safe journeys,
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