Monday, April 22, 2013

Spring - just remembering.....


While Spring is only beginning to make an appearance here in Alberta- our dining room table has had a few bundles of spring flowers...We have enjoyed tulips, daffodils and iris over the last few weeks.
Somehow I have not been very productive in a quilty way.. Its not that I haven't been looking at fabric. I recently received an order from Hancocks as I did not have any grey or cream batiks in the stash.  I have a specific project in mind that required that I  using those colors..I am trying to order less from the US ( rising postal rates combined with a huge stash that is waiting to be used LOL) However Hancocks had a deal on shipping and they do have good prices in their clearance section of batiks, so I succumbed to the sale and ended up with some lovely neutrals as well as more kids fabrics for baby wraps.. I am very happy with the fabrics that arrived- now if I could only get on with the projects..
Recently my school participated in a district fundraiser for kids so I made some jewelery and coordinating scarves to be used in a silent auction.   
They raised a little money for kids and I got to play with some beads and yarn - a winning combination - don't you think?
 I have been reading a book about the importance of Play by Dr. Stuart Brown. One of the most striking points that come from the book is the importance of continuing to play all of our lives. Sometimes  I find it quite a challenge  to balance work and play- even though I know I feel better when I play- I admire those of you who can carve out play time on a daily basis... even if it is only a half hour a day. I am just not very organized about playing versus working, and I get distracted by things I find on the computer- email, pinterest and facebook not to mention my favorite blogs...
I recognize that reading blogs and checking out things on the computer is  a different form of playing - but then I don't quilt or knit or bead...It is quite the conundrum... How to do you balance your time?  Do you set a timer and say that is all the time you can use to do one thing or another? Perhaps you have another way to fit in time to create and play?
  
This evening I started out trimming these blocks- it is a bit tedious and so I have squared some of the blocks (if I put my head down and just trimmed it would go a lot faster).
 Over the past week I have cut bias binding for the 10 baby wraps that I want to get made over the next few weeks. I plan to get the wraps spray basted soon so that I can get some baby wraps quilted up..
However none of these steps, which are valuable parts of the quilt processes, make for a very interesting blog writing.
Recently we have had some family events - our grand niece, Miss A turned two. Here she is with her beloved flopsy earred bunny.
We also remembered the birthday of my husband's brother, David by having a lovely brunch at a local hotel. He would have turned 60 at the beginning of April. David left us far too early - He died suddenly in a car accident in 1975- a  young man not quite 22.
 
I pulled out this coat that hangs in a closet in our house- a treasured piece of clothing that belonged to Dave. It holds a host of memories for my spouse. Dave was a talented pianist who had eclectic taste in music. Here is a collection of some of his favorite bands from the early 70's ( the Band, Genesis, Led Zeppelin and Chopin's Piano Concerto) David took my husband to his first concert- Procol Harem playing with ESO ( Edmonton Symphony Orchestra). Inside the vinyl record cover is a ticket stub and program from that concert - more treasured memories. David was a gifted mathematican and a writer. He worked for Canadian University Press at the time of his passing.
 I did not know Dave except for my husband's stories and memories. When I created this quilt for Bruce's parents, it was important to meto include David in the family wall hanging.
 You can see David's photo in the top in the middle. This quilt recently returned to our home after Bruce's mother passed away last fall. For a long time it had hung over Bruce's mother's bed. Mars is laying on our family picture. Do you think she recognizes her family?
April is a month of birthdays-both of my parent's celebrated their birthdays recently so I will leave you with the spinning flower quilts from earlier in my quilting journey.
This quilt belongs to my father. It is called Dad's garden and is made of rich batiks. The exact pattern name escapes me at present, but is a template quilt.
 I created 4 quilts of this pattern - two that had vivid bright batik flowers( the batik quilts were quite similar) but the other two were more subtle and different from one another. It is so interesting to see how different a quilt can look when one uses different fabric combinations.
Quite the contrast isn't it? This one was very soft looking with a mint background and pale sashing between the blocks.
And the final variation with no sashing between the blocks and a beautiful print backing and border- The spinning flowers were all different fat quarter prints.
Life does seem to get full and maintaining my blog is sometimes a challenge. Thanks for joining me for a bit of reminiscing and helping me honor David's memory. 
My quilts contain my stories and my life's journey - yours do too.. I believe that the stories behind the quilts are often as interesting as the beautiful works created from the fabrics.
 One day soon I will have some new pieces to show you I hope.
In the meantime, I hope to find my followers list - it appears to have disappeared from my sidebar. I am still not sure if I need to change something so that I continue to have a list of my valued followers. I know that some of the google reader is disappearing soon . Some of the technical parts of blogging remain a mystery to me. The more I read the more confused I get... LOL
Wishing you lots of time to play so that you can feed your creative spirit.
 
Warmest regards,
 Anna
 
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