A Long Weekend of Sheep and Dogs

Oh wow! It felt so good to have a nice long weekend away from home! I left Portland on Thursday afternoon and headed down to my brother’s place near Bandon, Oregon. I returned home today and I feel so much better! I really needed some time off.

Here are Rico and Bender on the trail on my brother’s property on Thursday. We celebrated our arrival with a nice brisk hike and then settled in for a cold beer before dinner.

Friday my brother and his wife accompanied me and my boys to the beach for a nice long walk and romp in the water. It was almost perfect weather for the beach. We were in our shirt sleeves. It’s been so hot here in Portland and the weather on the coast was so cool and wonderful.

Saturday and Sunday Rico was entered in a sheep herding clinic outside Bandon, Oregon. It was a really fantastic weekend, doing something we all love to do in a really beautiful place. Here are all the border collies entered in the clinic waiting patiently as they’re leashed to the fence. Rico is closest to the camera… hiding in the grass.

Here’s Rico watching another dog take her turn as he waits patiently. There is a lot of waiting involved in sheep herding clinics. It’s important that dogs learn to wait calmly.

The sheep we were herding had never been worked by dogs, so on Saturday there were sheep and dogs flying all over the place. By Sunday, everyone had it all figured out and we saw some really nice work. Here’s a video of me and Rico in his final run on Sunday.

A friend of mine who is an excellent photographer was also at the clinic and took some great photos on Sunday. Here’s a few of me and Rico. Click on each image to see it larger. (All photos by Heather Christenson)

We were all exhausted at the end of the clinic, but decided to hit the beach on the way back to my brother’s… and I’m so glad we did. I’m always sad to leave the coast and I really enjoyed my time on the sand with my boys.

And they were completely worn out when we got home.

Before we left for home this morning, Bender helped my sister-in-law pick strawberries. So to reward him, she gave his own bowl to eat.

We got home to Portland around 3:00 this afternoon. I got the car unloaded and got everything put away and did some laundry before grabbing dinner and heading out for a walk.

After our walk I spent a little time in my sewing room. I opened a package of some fabric that arrived while I was gone.

I bought a big piece of Brandon Mably’s Octopus in black with the plan of using it for a quilt backing some day. I just love this fabric! I also bought a yard of the Damask Flowers in five color ways. A lot of shops have been having pretty substantial sales on the previous collection’s fabric. A new collection is coming out soon and they are clearing out their inventory. It’s a great time to buy KFC fabric!

I have no idea what I’ll make to go with the Octopus fabric, but I have a few ideas. Look at all the soft and muted colors in this close up.

Hmmm. Ideas.

I also cut a few more strips of Aboriginal fabrics for my upcoming trip quilt then. Then I put together fabric combos for six strip sets that will be made into blocks.

I always tend to think of Aboriginal fabrics as being dark. But look at all that color! It will be interesting to see how this one comes together. I’m looking forward to making another trip quilt.

I wrapped up my evening in my sewing room by sewing together one row of my Ice Storm quilt. I’m determined to finish this thing this week!

I’ve received a few more Frankenbags from blog readers over the last week. This first one was made by Sue Phillips. Sue said she is very new to sewing… only got her first sewing machine during lock down! She had never heard of crumb quilting, and now she’s hooked. Isn’t that fantastic!!! And what a fun bag! It looks like a well loved family quilt. So cheerful and pretty!

This next bag was made by Diane Lyons. I just love that big blue bloom on the front of the bag. And all that wonderful color on the other side with that strong blue band around the top. Really pretty!

The last one I received this week is another lovely bag made by Jodi Smith. I really like her limited palette and the strong black borders. And the diagonal quilting is really fun! All wrapped up with a pretty lining.

Thanks to Sue, Diane and Jodi for sending photos.

I have a short work week coming up and then I’ll be on vacation for two weeks! I’m really looking forward to it.

12 Replies to “A Long Weekend of Sheep and Dogs”

  1. Thanks for sharing photos of the boys and these lovely bags. I got done of that octopus fabric as bd maybe I need more. I’m reluctant to cut into it because I like it so well

    Sent from my iPhone


    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’ve purchased several pieces of the Octopus fabric. I just love it and want to do something that does it justice. I have some ideas germinating… maybe some kind of trip quilt. I’m on a bit of a 2.5 inch strip set kick these days!


    1. It is very calming and so out of the ordinary for me. But I really like it and have been thinking about other pastel combos to explore. It’s hard to get a good collection of pastels and lighter value KFC fabrics these days.


  2. A sheep-herding clinic!? I love that. What lucky dogs who get the training and skill set to be helpful. Do you plan to have actual sheep on your own property? Or is this just a skill set to teach them discipline? Your quilting is beautiful and your bags are divine!!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It would be really handy to have property and sheep so I could train every day. But I’m not sure I want to maintain 20 acres and farm stock. I like herding because it involves a lot of training the dog, and that’s something I enjoy. It’s actually a dog sport that people compete in! I’ve had Rico in a few trials. We are quite novice, but he’s doing a lovely job. He’s very talented at herding. He comes from very accomplished sheep dogs.

      Thanks for your comments on my quilting. It’s a lot of fun to share it far and wide!



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