Monday, October 10, 2011

A Journey to the country to visit a quilt store.....

Fall is probably my favorite season- the weather is often pleasant and the colors are rich. A little while back Bruce helped me dig out the fall decorations and I finally put away the spring rabbits. Somehow summer never made an appearance- at least as far as house decor. I am particularly fond of ceramic jugs and thought this scarecrow was one handsome guy.
A couple of weeks ago my friend Carolyn emailed me and asked if I wanted to go on a road trip with her to a little shop Behind the seams that is out in the country north of the city. After a little discussion we found a time that worked for both of us and off we went..( Do click on Carolyn's name and it will take you to her fabulous post about our fun road trip)
The drive was beautiful- it was a mild day by fall standards here in Alberta (about 12 degrees C). You can see the contrast of the big blue sky that I associate with the prairies. I am a fourth generation Albertan, a woman whose genealogy has connections with England and Sweden on my mother's side, and with the United States on my father's side. My great grandparents gave me agricultural roots even though I never lived on a farm myself. There is nothing more beautiful to me than the big blue prairie sky against the golden crops.

In the country one often sees barns (both old and new) that mark the landscape. I love this bright red one. We saw some weathered well turned barns as well but unfortunately I did not get a photo of them.
Take a look at this lovely old wooden fence that graces the hillside. There was lots of shades of gold to be viewed. Most of the crops were bailed waiting to be hauled away before the snow arrives.

We arrived in the town of Mayerthorpe sooner than we anticipated.(the town was established much earlier than the signage of this now defunct shop).We stopped to have something to eat in the local cafe before heading on to the quilt shop.
The shop is out on Shelley's farm about 6 1/2 miles north of town. Carolyn contacted her ahead of time, and Shelley graciously opened up her shop for Cheryl(another quilting friend of Carolyn's) Carolyn and myself. From the outside it looks like the shop is not large, but inside it is a virtual treasure trove. We found some beautiful fabrics to purchase for very reasonable prices.

Before I even went into the shop, the place felt familar to me. My grandparents lived on a farm all their lives. On their homestead there were many beautiful populars that graced the property. The golden leaves of the trees and the line of washing hanging on the clothesline flooded me with warm childhood memories. It was very tempting to go and smell the wash blowing in a gentle fall wind.

Here is just inside the door- some gorgeous yellow and orange to create something for the fall season..

Here is Shelley with the treasures that we found in the shop. The pile in front of her, is Carolyn's finds. Mine is the one in the plastic bag to the left. I love the sewing machine border on the wall behind Shelley. The store services lots of quilters in the surrounding community. She and her mother have owned the store together for the past 17 years. There were lots of fun projects and seasonal things as well as buttons and notions to help quilters. It took us quite alot of time to explore the shop and we came out with some great purchases to use in future projects.

Just some more fall foliage to enjoy... We don't have the rich reds of Central and Eastern Canada because we don't have many maple trees in the west. We do get some oranges and browns though and many many shades of gold.

This is a view of the Pembina River as we travelled back towards the city.

Carolyn and I stopped in another Quilt store in Sherwood Park called Lori's. I have visited their store often and on this stop they had their annual birthday sale. I found some beautiful batiks there to add to my stash.

These are two views of the city center skyline- quite the contrast to the big open spaces we just visited. I live in the central part of the city and while we have lots of large buildings, we also have a green belt that runs along the river. There is a large parkland on either side of the river that divides the northern and southern part of Edmonton. This is a photograph of the skyline coming in from the east.

Bruce returned yesterday from a visit to the West coast. He and some friends drove to Victoria( about 1000 miles from home) and stopped overnight in a place called Thrums to visit a friend of one his travelling companions. Thrums,British Columbia has lots of rich farm and timber land. Bruce took this photo of the Sunflower for me to admire. They were very tall and very large sunflowers!

Last night we went to a concert to hear a group called The Strawbs. Bruce and I have listened to them forever - The main attraction of the evening was a band called The Zombies who were also a British band. If you do decide to google the Zombies - make sure you include British rock band in your search-. The Zombie band has existed since 1964 and while I didn't think I was familar with their music, I knew a surprising number of songs.

Today is Canadian Thanksgiving. We are cooking a nice dinner for the two of us- I got a small roasting chicken and have made a Japanese Coleslaw salad. I have stuffed the bird and Bruce will make some brussel sprouts, mashed potatoes and turnip to go with the meal. It will be a delicious and there will be some yummy leftovers for this week. To my Canadian friends, I hope you have spent a lovely day with your loved ones.

I have been quilting these days, but right now all I have to show is many pieces that are cut up into bits to be sewn together. Perhaps next time I will have some blocks to show you- that is if I don't get too busy doing other things.

Happy quilting,
Warmest regards,

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