Friday, May 31, 2013


Meet Piper...sweet adorable Piper.   

She's my second teddy bear from England.  Boy was I glad to find her.  Cute as a button and she fit in my suitcase  without a problem.  

Welcome home Piper!

Thursday, May 30, 2013

Flower Embroidery

Before our road trip last week I attended my first embroidery lesson.  That's my first attempt above - the orange flower.  
I hoped to use the embroidery thread I had on hand (...for years!) but the blue thread kept breaking so I switched to orange.  

Before embroidering at home for the first time, I marked off in painter's blue tape the area that needed to be free for the embroidery arm and hoop.  I also marked the corner positions of my sewing machine.  Now when I remove the machine to take to classes I know where to reposition it. 

The embroidery hoop is attached and I'm ready to sew. The flower pattern I programmed is showing in the computer viewing screen.
The machine is stitching the yellow centers of the flowers here.  
What do you think of my first finished embroidered flower?  I'm not sure what I will do with this but I will think of something.  

I went to Joann Fabrics today and bought a cutting mat, ruler and other sewing items with my 40% and 15% off coupons.  I bought some fabric flats to make some more cosmetic bags too.   

Have you ever seen these little teeny, tiny skeins of yarn?  They are called Bombóns and I think they would be great when you have a small project and just need a small sample of a yarn color. 

I bought batting, three bags, for my crochet pin cushions.   Now I can finished up that project.  

I was so excited to find these two crochet magazines at Joann's.  I've never seen them at Barnes n' Noble.  Nor did I see any crochet magazines while we were in the U.K.  The crochet issue on the left is a publication from the U.K.  The other is a Vogue special issue.   I can't wait to read them.  

Well, that's my fun day.  What have you been up to?

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Red Work Embroidery

I had fun this afternoon embroidering on my new Janome Memory Craft 12000.  I picked two designs out - one of flowers with four color changes and the other red  work in, of course, red thread.  

The first one took 14 minutes to complete not counting time to change thread and the redwork took ten minutes.

Ten minutes and look at this beautiful red work embroidery!  

I "stole" one of my finished crocheted pin cushions to use in my sewing room.  It's in red yarns on one side and green on the other.  They really make nice functional pin cushions and they are pretty too. 

I guess I will have to buy some plain tea towels or flour sacks because I just love red work embroidery.   

How about you?

Do you love red work embroidery too?

Sunday, May 26, 2013

Happy Memorial Weekend

I would like to thank all the military service people safe guarding our country on this Memorial Weekend. 

We returned from our road trip Friday.   Hubby drove 3,000 miles on this one.   We visited the Headwaters of the Mississippi and traveled to Iowa to tour two RV manufacturers - Winnebago and Born Free. 

This is the first Winnebago Class A D22 model off the assembly line in 1967 that changed the RV world.  

Yesterday was our 39th wedding anniversary.   So strange how quickly the years have gone by.  Hubby surprised me with a bouquet of flowers and took me out for dinner.  Here's a photo I found of a younger us from sometime in the late 1980s (I think).  
Remember the vivid colors from the 1970s?  These are colors used in the Winnabego coaches back then....lots of oranges and greens.  
While on our road trip I crocheted up a storm making lots of hexagons for my pin cushion project.  

I'll "have" to go to Joann Fabrics this week to get more batting to finish them.   

While taking my first embroidery class on my new sewing machine I bought some buttons that will be perfect for my pin cushions.  I'm torn between sewing and crocheting.  

Last night was a bad night for me.  Lots of congestion and thick drainage down my throat all night.  Not sure what set it off - probably the weather.  So I didn't sleep well at all.  I'm taking it easy today and Hubby has been an angel making lunch for us today.  

We're glad to be home!

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

York, England

While we're driving around Minneapolis/St. Paul, MN in morning rush hour traffic, I thought this is an excellent time to post about our stop in York, England, on April 25th during our grand tour of England/Wales/Scotland. 

York is another historic town that the Romans settled.  And where the ancient Roman town walls are still standing.  

We walked the Roman Wall - I still can't believe we walked where the Romans did.  Did you know the Romans were in Britain for several hundreds of years!  Longer than our country has even existed.
 These are Romans stone caskets!   Our guide told us that when the Romans left Britain the people didn't want to live in their buildings and either left the structures alone or used the stone for their own buildings.  That's after hundreds of years of Roman rule!  

We enjoyed walking the historic streets of York.  
York Minster....fantastic!  Inside and outside...just magnificent!  

Me sipping English ale for the first time.  I'm not a beer drinker at all but I had to try it!

And more Roman walls!  I could post hundreds of photos.  But I better stop.  More on our our trip coming.  

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Hexagons Anyone?

The Class B Rally is over.  We had fun with the group.  Today we traveled through the UP of Michigan, Wisconsin and now we're set up at a KOA Campground in Cloquet/Duluth, Minnesota.  We're bracing for severe thunderstorms this evening and overnight.  

Do you know what a "Yooper" and a "Troll" are?  We didn't either until our rally in the UP.    
What Da Heck Is A Yooper?
The people that live in the Upper Peninsula or the U.P. are called "Yoopers" and are proud of it. The people that live under the bridge are called "trolls." The song "I'm a Troll Man" was written about them. Lots of trolls from down below dream about moving to da U.P., but there's no work here. So we let them come up to relax, enjoy and spend their cash, but they gotta go home afterwards.

Where is Yooperland?

From Da Yoopers School For Da Truly Ungifted
Yooperland Geography 1034

The state of Michigan is broken up into two peninsulas - the Lower Peninsula and the Upper Peninsula. They are connected together by the Mackinac Bridge.

An artists view of Michigan 
Adapted from John Hinde Inc. Distributed by Antigo Card Service

Yooper names for the Mackinac Bridge - Da Crossing, Da Bridge, Big Mac, Troll Turnpike.

Yooper names for the Upper Peninsula - Yooperland, Da U.P., Da Yoop, Yoopsconsin.

Yooper names for the Lower Peninsula (Michigan, Da Mitten, Troll Land, Detroit)  

I had fresh strawberry French toast for supper.  Yummy!

I'm crocheting my hexagons for my pin cushions.  I'm on my 8th set.   When I'm home I will fill them with batting, single crochet them close and add the yarns wrap arounds and buttons.  

We're on our way to the Head Waters of the Mississippi tomorrow - that is if it doesn't rain too hard or we may stay over here in Duluth another day.  

Friday, May 17, 2013

Beautiful Day in Upper Michigan

The bluest sky...lovely warm sun and a nice light cool breeze! 

It doesn't get better than this for camping!

Throw in a little crochet after a long walk and it's perfect.  

Hope your day was as wonderful as ours.  

Thursday, May 16, 2013

RVing Again

Hubby drove about 400 miles yesterday and almost 500 miles today.  I don't know how he does it.  But we are here in Upper Michigan for the Class B RV Rally.  While Hubby was driving I multitasked.  I am so behind in reading my magazine subscriptions.  Determined to catch up I packed all my unread "Better Homes and Garden" magazines from last year and this year.  I read quite a few on the way from Pennsylvania to Upper Michigan yesterday and today.

I'm crocheting in the van too.  I bought along lots of cotton yarns from my stash and crochet supplies to make the hexagons for my pin cushions.  I was happy to find some jumbo markers in my supplies that clip close.  I was so tired of the open ones that would work their way loose as I crocheted around the hexagon.

Where we are camped was at one time an army base that housed the military in trailers.  The old concrete pads and hook ups are still here.  No cable, no WiFi and the one bathroom I saw I wouldn't use.   No problem though...luckily we have a shower in our van albeit a tiny one.   

The rally starts tomorrow officially and runs to Sunday morning.   We joined the pot luck dinner tonight in the rally tent and now we are back in our van for the evening. 

Guess we will watch a DVD tonight.  Have a good night!

Has this happened to you....

Monday, May 13, 2013

Pin Cushion Amoré

Want a great way to use up all those small lengths of yarn in your stash?

Try this fun and easy pin cushion pattern (here). 

I have pin cushion AMORE!

I'm crocheting tons of them to give away as gifts for family and friends.  I'm on my seventh one.  I think about twenty-ish will give me the quantity I need for  Christmas gifts for the Bunco gals plus my sister-in-laws and nieces.  

I've used two ways to wrap the yarn around the corners.  

The first way is on the outside which creates a lovely flower as shown below.  

The second way is to insert the needle inside the the single crochet enclosure which creates a more round pin cushion (see photo below).  

I like both ways but maybe now I'm favoring the flower method more.  

I finally finished the laundry from our U.K. Trip and now we're packing our "Little Guy" - that's our name for our tiny travel van - for our road trip this week. 

We had to re-winterize after our Florida trip this past Jan-Feb and remove all liquids.

It takes more time to set up our first trip after winter. 

Hubby de-winterized and filled the water tank.

We re-stocked the van with fresh bedding, clothes and supplies.

We re-organized a few cabinets too. 

On the trip agenda are two RV Rallies, a visit to the head waters of the Mississippi and maybe one or two visits to Class B RV Manufacturers in the mid-west.  

Hubby is planning our route so if we decide to go home at any time we can within a day or two. 

We aren't summer campers...we prefer spring and fall seasons for two reasons - we don't like hot weather or busy campgrounds in the summertime.

It's been a strange day...dark and overcast at times and then the sun comes out.

Just weird and on the cool side too.

We're packing warm weather clothing because it's still on the cold side in upper Michigan where our first Class B RV Rally takes place.  They had snow yesterday!

There's just over 30 vans and about 60 plus people signed up.

Our outdoor activities are in a large tent since the campground doesn't have a meeting room. 

I better get busy.    

Have a lovely day!