Back to Normal… and Recovering

I’m a raging introvert. I really like my time alone to recharge. So after having company I can feel completely wiped out, even if I totally enjoyed having that company around. So I’m not feeling particularly driven to be productive right now. But I did muster just a little bit of sewing tonight.

I felt like I wanted to do something, but since I’m tired I didn’t want to do anything that required measuring or precision. So I decided to whip out the six additional quarter log cabin sunburst blocks I need to complete this quilt.

It didn’t take too long to have them all sewn together and squared up to 8.5 inches.

I didn’t have enough oomph left to cut and sew on the sashing strips. I can easily get that done tomorrow night and get these blocks back up on the design wall.

It will sew together pretty quickly. the blocks are 8.5 inches plus 3 inch sashing. It’s only 32 blocks in total. The quilt won’t be huge. I’ll add setting triangles I the same jumble. And an additional jumble border to make those blocks float like dumplings in a lovely soup of jumble. Yum!

It will be a throw size quilt that isn’t huge, but is sufficient.

I also didn’t have enough oomph left to clean up the mess I made.

Our winter weather continues, much to my displeasure. Just two weeks ago I was all cocky that spring had arrived. I guess that will teach me to be fooled by our fake spring that almost always arrives in February. But… the really good news is that Daylight Saving Time arrives in about a week-and-a-half! That truly is my favorite day of the year! I would have it be dark until 10 am if I could have more light in the evening during the winters. I LOVE the long summer light in the evenings.

It snowed on and off most of today but didn’t accumulate. We didn’t have a chance to get out for a walk until around 4:15. It wasn’t raining or snowing when we started, but by the time we hit mile 2, there was an enthusiastic and wet snow falling.

The boys were covered with snow and nearly soaked to the skin.

I stopped to take this photo when we were at about 3.5 miles of our four-mile walk.

Someone in that photo looks happier than the other two.

The weather tomorrow looks dry so I’m hoping my schedule will allow an afternoon walk.

I leave you with this boop-able schnoz tonight.

Busy Last Day With My Friend — Aboriginal 16-Patch Done!

Yesterday, Saturday, we got up and headed out to Battleground around 9:45 for Rico’s herding lesson at 11. We gave ourselves a little extra time because we weren’t sure how the roads would be. Just two nights ago the freeways were at a dead standstill in the snow storm.

The street my house is on was solid ice and really slick. The main road that takes me east from my house to Interstate 5 was terrible. Very slick and icy and rough. The three mile drive took us about 15 minutes! I was being extra careful so we didn’t slide off the road.

Once we got to the interstate the roads were completely dry! Even up on the country roads around Battle Ground. I was expecting to see icy and slick roads up there.

Our herding lesson was great. We spent the hour working on some fine tuning for the sheep herding trial on Sunday.

When we were done we stopped at the field at Washington State University to let the boys have a good run. They really needed one after not much activity during the storm.

There’s Bender in front and Rico waaaaay back there. They were so happy to get out and run!

On the way home we decided to stop at Ikea to see what curtains they had for my bedroom since I wasn’t thrilled with the ones I got at Penney’s, or with the ones I ordered from Amazon. I found a set I really like. They are very tall so will need to be cut down and hemmed.

When we got home we grabbed the curtains and returned one set to Penney’s and another set I bought to Amazon. Then we headed out for a treat of frozen yogurt! That was our lunch. Hell of a lunch!!!

When we got home I tossed a chicken with potatoes, carrots and mushrooms in the oven to roast. Then we got busy sewing on the second half of the 16 patch quilt. We got three rows done before dinner and finished up the last two rows and sewed the two large sections together after our good meal.

Here’s a little video showing this gorgeous quilt…

I’m really happy, too, that my friend is now IN LOVE with his quilt! I was feeling terrible as we were making it that she wasn’t very excited about it. But when the blocks started being sewn into the quilt top, she fell in love more with each block! I was thinking she was going to have to leave it with me.

I really can’t believe we got it done!

We made the decision last night that we weren’t going to head out for Rico’s sheep herding trial as a storm was coming in and it could have been dicy as we would have had to be on the road at 5:00 this morning. I actually felt better after making this decision. I was dreading a trip in bad weather. We both think it was the right decision.

So, what did we do instead? Well, we didn’t get up a 4 am., that’s for sure! But It was snowing when I went to bed last night and my friend said the road was covered with snow when she woke up at 5 am.

So we had a good night sleep, had a leisurely breakfast then headed out to my favorite local quilting store to purchase a backing for this 16 patch quilt. My friend is going to leave it here with me to take to my long arm quilter to finish. She decided on the KFC Onion Rings wide backing. I think it’s a great choice!

I have a big piece of that Onion Rings in my stash that I planned to use on an Aboriginal Fabric quilt some day.

On the way home we stopped at the Pendleton Woolen Mills outlet store. We go there often and never buy anything, but it’s so fun to look at all the beautiful things they have.

Things to furnish your house… blankets… gorgeous huge rolls of wool fabric…

The pillows were my favorite. The colors were so amazingly gorgeous!

And, again, we walked out empty handed.

When we got home my friend’s husband came over and hung my new curtain rod above my bedroom window. Then my visitor and I got busy cutting down the curtains we bought at Ikea, getting them hemmed and pressed. Once they were done we hung them on the new rod.

I’ve had a sheet hanging over that window for a couple years… there since the blind that was there broke. I don’t know why I waited so long to do this! It feels so good to have the window showing. And I can’t wait to open these curtains in the morning when the sun is shining! Its makes the room feel so much bigger.

I wish the panels were a little wider so there was a little more fullness when they are closed. But the alternative would be that I made curtains from scratch. And I’d rather spend my time making something else!

We’re winding down tonight as my friend is preparing to head home tomorrow and I’m back to work. It’s been really fun to have her here again and great to have a week off work.

I think I may plan to take a long weekend around Memorial Day weekend. It might be a good time to head down to my brother’s place again.

Aboriginal Fabric 16-Patch Half-Way Complete

(I’m back from tech issues! This post is from Friday night)

It was cold again today in Portland. Crisp and cold. Our snow is still fluffy and many of the roads are icy. They have cleared the freeways, for the most part and traffic is flowing again.

My visiting friend lives in a place that got around 14 inches of snow over the last few days. People there are already back to normal. So she’s having a hard time adjusting to what happens in Portland with about a third of that amount. She had a store and restaurant that she was ready to go to today. I suggested that we should call first to see if they were open. And, as I predicted, they were both closed! She thought this was astounding. Yup. Snow storms are very different here.

The good thing about the cold weather after a snow storm is that the snow on the ground stays nice and fluffy, which is good news for dogs. I didn’t get them out for a walk today because we were out and about and because the roads were too slick for me to be walking on. So we played in the back yard instead.

I think they enjoyed themselves.

That Rico takes his play very seriously. Bender, on the other hand…

We stayed home a good portion of the day today, but we did venture out. We want to the grocery store and then dropped by the mall again to buy some curtains for my bedroom. There weren’t very many people out and about and some of the roads were really icy and slick.

Once we got home we hunkered down and decided that we were going to get the first five rows of the 16 patch quilt all sewn together and in one piece. And we did it!

I just love seeing all these blocks sewn together. It takes it from a bunch of blocks to something really fantastic! We made a big old piece of amazing fabric!

My friend went through the blocks and made sure all the seams were going the same direction in each row… alternating direction in each subsequent row. This insures that the seams will nest nicely and the corners will be perfect!

Case in point…

Look at all those beautiful corners! Thanks to Wanda at Exuberant Color for her fool proof tutorial! Here’s a direct link to Wanda’s tutorial for making a 16 patch.

A little more eye candy…

We pulled the remaining 5 rows off the design wall after clearly marking each row.

I pinned all these rows and my friend pressed them all. We took turns sewing. I actually love pinning all these seams. I pin every place where two seams meet. I absolutely love the feeling when those nested seams make that little soft click when they nest. It’s almost mediative to me. And I love all the precision that nesting makes possible.

While we were at the grocery store today we bought everything we needed to make rock fish tacos for dinner. They were pretty tasty!

I don’t have a recipe. I basically pan fry the rock fish with some Penny’s Northwood Spice rub. Then I add pickled onions (lots of recipes for these online), some simple coleslaw with a vinaigrette, and a little cheese in a corn tortilla. We topped these off with some home made hot sauce my sister in law gave me. So tasty!!! And enough fish left over that we can have another dinner of rock fish tacos!

Tomorrow we are planning on heading out again on a more adventurous post storm trip… Battle Ground for Rico’s weekly sheep herding lesson, and we’ll be getting ready for his competition on Sunday!

Technical Issues… Please Stand By

I’m having some technical issues with my blog platform. It appears that I’m out of storage and can’t upload any photos. I’ve contacted support, but it being a weekend might mean I have to wait until Monday to get help.

So here’s an old photo of my boys. We’re off on a snowy adventure in sheep herding today.

Snow Day Means 80 Aboriginal 16-Patch Blocks Done

I measured the snow on my patio table this morning and was shocked to find this…

But as I thought about it, I realized that a good deal of that was from drifting. So later in the day I put on my boots and ventured out into the middle of the yard where I was able to ascertain that we have a total of around four inches. It’s hard to know for sure because of the winds. Downtown Portland got around 11 inches!

The roads were still at a standstill this morning. They have been working on getting them cleared all day. Many people abandoned their cars which makes that job a lot harder. It will likely be days, at a minimum, until it’s all cleared and back to normal.

I took a few minutes and shoveled some paths around the patio and to my gate. I also cleared the front sidewalk and a path down the driveway. The pat on the driveway was completely drifted over in about an hour.

It was cold to day but the sun did come out and it was really pretty.

I did manage to get the boys out for a walk this afternoon. The streets were pretty icy and we only saw a couple of cars in a 1.5 mile walk.

There were some areas where the streets had cleared off a little. But my street was solid ice and is really frozen solid tonight.

All this snow and cold meant that my friend and I were inside nearly all day today. And we got a lot done. Last night we had 24 blocks done. And tonight, ALL 80 BLOCKS ARE DONE!!!

Amazing what you can get done when you’re stuck in the house during a record breaking snow storm!

That’s not all the blocks. There are 16 blocks in that pile at the bottom. We’ll get them up on the design wall tomorrow and start moving things around.

It feels great to have these blocks done. I was worried that we wouldn’t be able to complete this top while my friend is still here. But now I’m feeling pretty confident about getting it done.

My friend set the first row nice and straight.

We just didn’t get it high enough. Tomorrow we’ll add a row at the top and a row at the bottom to make this top 8 blocks by 10 blocks. It will finish at around 64 inches by 80 inches. That’s a good size throw quilt and the same size I’ve made my other 16 patch quilt.s

I just love looking at these blocks as we put them together. Look at this one!

It’s funny how my friend and I have sort of settled into the jobs we’re each most comfortable with. I’m doing all the cutting of the strips and the pinning of the block pieces. My friend has been doing most of the sewing all of today. And we switch off on pressing.

I’m loving this quilt top! I knew I’d like the Aboriginal fabrics, but I love the way they work in these small squares.

I just love that purple block at the upper center.

And one more bit of eye candy.

My brother let me know today that they decided not to come up this weekend. They just don’t want to deal with the winter weather. It’s not a terrible decision but my friend and I were looking forward to their visit.

We’re hoping we’ll be able to get out and about some tomorrow. We will spend some time on this quilt top. We should be able to get it designed tomorrow and get most of it sewn together. We will definitely get it done before she leaves for home.

Aboriginal Fabric 16-Patch is Happening — and SNOW!

It snowed this evening. It snowed a lot more than I thought it would. This is a big deal for Portland. I have friends in the area who got up to nine inches.

Today my friend and I took a really delicious Thai lunch to a mutual friend who lives in Oregon City on the southeast side of Portland. It was a really fun visit. It snowed the entire time we were at her place but it didn’t accumulate on the ground. She has a really nice piece of property and it was so pretty.

We knew a storm was coming in and I knew it was important to get home before the storm hit because it gets really bad here really fast when it snows. I finally got my friend in the car around 4:00 and we were on our way. The drive home was just rainy and traffic was light. We stopped and got gas as we got close to my house and pulled into my driveway right at 5:00 as it was just starting to snow.

We just watched the 11 pm news and the freeways around Portland are still backed up with traffic and a dead standstill. People have been stuck in their cars since the evening commute. I would imagine a good number of people will be spending the night in their cars. I’m so glad we got home when we did!

Portland doesn’t do snow well. They essentially don’t do anything to clear the snow… except wait for it to melt. So when a storm hits the roads are treacherous.

The snow has stopped now but we could pick up a little more over night. Here’s a photo from earlier this evening.

It was really snowing! And now it’s cold. It’s not supposed to get above freezing tomorrow so I would think it’s unlikely we’ll be going anywhere since the roads will still be solid ice.

So we hunkered down in the house tonight and got to sewing. I started pressing and slicing the strip sets we started last night.

My friend sat at the sewing machine and sewed the pressed and cut strip sets that I handed her.

We had 12 strip sets that we started last night and got them all ready to sew into blocks.

OMG! Look at hat block! It’s one of my favorites! Something so magical about red and turquoise together!

We sort of tag teamed it tonight. I cut, she pressed, I pinned, she sewed, she pressed, I sewed… and in a couple of hours we had 24 blocks done and up on the design wall.

That was a really productive night! And I’m loving this quilt!!! I can’t wait to see It as we add more blocks. I think it will brighten up quite a bit because there are some vibrant colors that aren’t in there yet.

My friend is liking it more tonight and I’m happy to see that.

Here’s some eye candy…

And one more…

We have a couple of projects to do around the house tomorrow. We want to hang the curtain rod in my bedroom and hang a bunch of dog photos in my utility room. Plus, we have more blocks to make!

My brother sent me this photo from his place on the southern coast today.

Someone is worn out tonight.

We Bought More Fabric and We Sewed a Little

Typical for me and my friend, we’ve been busy buying fabric since she’s been here. Yesterday we headed out to McMinnville, Oregon, to a lovely quilt shop there and picked up a few more Aboriginal prints. I bought a bunch of Aboriginal prints and one piece of KFC fabric. I completely neglected to take a photo of what I bought before I put it away. So here’s a photo of what my friend bought. We bought a lot of the same stuff.

McMinnville is about a 45 minute drive from my house. When we come back we always wind our way back through the country side rather than sticking to the main roads. It’s always a nice and enjoyable ride through gorgeous Oregon farm and wine country. It’s a tradition for us to share a bag of salt and vinegar potato chips on that leisurely drive home.

When we got back home we cut strips from the all new Aboriginal fabrics my friend bought since she’s been here.

This is a good time to get excited about how this quilt will turn out. I know I’m getting excited! It’s so fun to see more bright Aboriginal designs. The first ones the came out with were all darker.

Before we settled down last night we paired up most of the strips in preparation for sewing them into strip sets. We still don’t have enough pairs to make the quilt so we’ll probably have to cut more fabric and make some new combinations.

Today we drove up to Battle Ground, WA, to the country fabric store that has a ton of Kaffe fabric. My friend bought a handful of pieces of some older KFC fabrics she found there. I bought a small stack of blue KFC fabrics to include in the blue quilt I’m thinking about making.

Looking at that photo, I’m thinking one or two of those will definitely NOT make it into that quilt!

While we were up in that area, we stopped to let the dogs have a nice run in the park with the creek. It was pouring when we got there, but it let up a little by the time we left. They didn’t get a walk at all yesterday so they really needed to stretch their legs.

If you ever lose Bender, this is where you can find him about 90 percent of the time.

The dogs were soaked and happy!

Tonight we sat down and sewed 10 or so strip sets together, then finger pressed them in preparation for pressing with the iron.

I showed my friend how I use my metal ruler to keep my strip sets nice and straight when I press them.

And her strip sets turned out beautifully!

We got one set cut before we decided to call it quits for the night.

Look at how gorgeous that block is going to be! Those pops of orange are so incredible! I can’t wait to see more of these blocks come together. My friend is still not terribly excited about making this quilt. I’m hoping she’ll get more excited when she sees some of these blocks come together.

This is the point when I start getting really excited about a project… when you first see how the colors and patterns are playing with each other.

This afternoon we headed to the mall — NOT the favorite activity for either of us. My friend headed for the Apple store to buy a new iPad and I headed to JC Penney to buy some curtain rods. One for the window in my bedroom and one to hang above my bed to hang a quilt. I also bought a small one for a wall hanging in my sewing room.

We’re still trying to decide what we’re going to do tomorrow. We have some winter weather coming in so it might not be the best time to be out on the road. We’re going to play it by ear. If the weather keeps us at home we may hang those curtain rods.

We Did It! We Finished The Starburst Quilt Top!

It took two of us tag teaming it today, but we finished this baby right around 10 pm.

It’s not a great photograph, but it shows the full quilt top. We’ll try to get a better one in the natural morning light.

It measures 81 x 81 inches, which is right where I though it would end up. So all those calculations my friend Karin provided really did work! I’ll be adding 7.5 inch borders of the red fabric all the way around. That will bring it to around 95 inches. It will be a good size and will allow for some shrinkage with quilting and washing. Better too big than too small.

My friend did al the pressing as I sewed the seams. It went together easily but it did take longer than I anticipated it would.

It feels really good to have it done and it really is pretty. It’s so much prettier when you can see all the fabrics close up.

My friend and I were talking about this quilt last night and we decided that there are likely a couple hundred different fabrics in this quilt top.

That eclectic and varied mix of fabrics is really something special in my book.

While I was helping my friend maneuver that bulk of fabric across the ironing board I got a glimpse of my standing lamp shining through. It was so pretty.

It looks like stained glass.

It did take some effort to keep all the pieces organized and in the right order. So we kept everything labeled to avoid disaster.

The good thing is that the graduated size of the rows made it a little easy to keep the rows in order. And I had to make sure all the triangles were aligned the right way.

We ended up with three large sections at the end. One section for each corner and a four-row strip of the longest center blocks.

We used every available surface in my sewing room to keep it all in order.

And as usual I folded all the bulk up into a narrower section then accordion folded that so I could feed it through my sewing machine.

This is the entire quilt top with that final diagonal seam pinned. I hold the folded pile on my lap as I feed it all through the machine.

Again, this is not my favorite part of making a quilt. But it’s done! Phew!

And the last few inches of the final seam…

It feels good to have this done! I’ll sew the borders on after my friend leaves next week. We need to focus on her quilt the rest of the week.

And to that end we took a quick trip to Pioneer Quilts, a local quilt shop, early this afternoon to pick up some Australian Aboriginal fabrics for her 16 patch that we’ll work on this week. She brought a bunch of 2.5 inch strips with her, but they are mostly dark so we needed to supplement them with brighter colors and some lighter value fabrics.

I picked up a few half yard cuts for myself while I was there. And I’m feeling pretty bad that I didn’t get any of the purple one, second from the left on the bottom row of the photo above. What was I thinking?

They were having an end of bolt sale so I bought all they had of this blue Kaffe Roman Glass to go with the blue fabrics I’m slowly putting together.

I meant to take some photos of the store to share here. It’s my favorite quilt store in the immediate Portland area.

While were were standing by the cutting table with an impressive stack of bolts of Aboriginal fabrics we were chatting with a woman who had brought her out-of-town friend to the quilt store. Then she held up her phone to show me this picture and asked me, “Is this you?”

I laughed and said, “Yes, but how did you know it was me.” Here’s what tipped her off:

  1. She was at the fabric store because I had made a mention of it.
  2. She saw the tall stack of Aboriginal fabrics on the cutting table and knew that I love those fabrics.
  3. She recognized my hair from my photos on Instagram. And I had a mask on!!!

I wish I’d gotten her name. It was fun to chat as we waited for fabric to be cut.

Tomorrow we are hoping to head out to McMinnville to visit a Quilt store that has a good selection of Aboriginal and Kaffe Fassett Collective fabrics. We have to wait and see if they’re open since tomorrow is a holiday.

Then we’ll start pressing and cutting from my friend’s quilt.

Officially On Vacation!!!

I left my house at about 5:15 last night to head to the airport to pick up my friend at around 7:00. I was a little early so I parked at a cell phone waiting lot at the end of one of the runways. About 15 minutes later a man approached my car to see if I had any change. I apologized that I don’t carry any cash. He was very nice and not threatening. But I decided that I should drive to a different lot that has better lighting and more people in it for safety.

It was at that time I realized my car battery was D-E-A-D. Not even a click. Dead as a doornail. And my friend was to be arriving within minutes. So I got on the phone with AAA and had them all set up to come and help within a few minutes.

My brother gave me a charge pack for Christmas a year ago. It’s in the car and charged up, so I thought I’d give it a try to see if I could jump the car myself. The guy at AAA called me at that time to see what I needed help with, and he ended up FaceTiming with me to help me jump my car with the charge pack.

Long story short, we couldn’t get it to work. But the good news is that the AAA service guy arrived about 15 minutes later. So I just had him put in a new battery. I figured it was better than spending a half day during my vacation getting a new battery installed.

Luckily, sort of, when my friend’s plane arrived they couldn’t get the door open, so she sat at the gate for nearly a half hour waiting for them to open the blasted door. She was afraid that they were going to have to use the slide to get off the aircraft.

I finally picked up my friend and we were on our way back to my house right at 8 pm.

After a good night sleep, I was on the air this morning from 7-10. Then we hightailed it down to Molalla, OR, for a sheep herding lesson with Rico. He was so amazing!!! For being in a place he’s not accustomed to, he did an amazing job. He needed a good cool of when we were done.

When our lesson ended we hopped back in the car and hightailed it for home. Then I worked as producer for the final three hours of our drive, from 2-5 pm.

So now… the drive is over and I’m officially on vacation!!! And I’m exhausted.

We ordered some shrimp tacos for dinner, hopped in the car and picked them up, headed home and then actually sat down at the dining room table like civilized people. It was a really good dinner and it was fun to enjoy some conversation while we ate.

After dinner I took the boys for a 2 mile walk. When I got home my friend and I hit my sewing room and put together two more rows of my sunburst quarter log cabin quilt. But first I had to cut some additional setting triangles.

I managed to get the two longest diagonal rows in the quilt sewn together. My friend pressed as I sewed.

I thought maybe we’d actually sew these two rows together and get them pressed tonight, but I was just too tired to tackle that long seam. So we’ll do that tomorrow. Maybe we’ll get the rest of the top done tomorrow.

That’s one long row folded over itself. Below, both rows all sewn together, resting peacefully on my cutting table.

The good news with the remainder of this quilt top is that each upcoming row is shorter than the last. So It should go together pretty quickly.

Tomorrow we’re going to get a good sleep in. Then we’ll hit a lovely local quilt shop to pick up some Aboriginal fabrics for the quilt we’ll make for my friend while she’s here.

Tired and Ready for a Week of Vacation

I’m exhausted. And I’m happy we’re down to the last two days of our fundraising drive. My friend that visited late last summer, the one who helped me make my red Fractured quilt, is flying into town tomorrow night. She will spend ten days here. I’m taking next week off work and am soooo looking forward to it.

That means I’ve been busy this week getting my house in order and getting ready to be gone from work for a week… all during a stressful and demanding time at work. So I haven’t gotten too much done in my sewing room this week.

I did manage to finish up the last 18 color wash blocks over the last couple of days.

That makes 161 blocks done.

That stack is almost six inches tall.

I’ll put these aside while my friend is here. Our plan is to make a 16 patch quilt top for her while she’s here. She hates the idea of making one, but I’m going to show her how much fun they are and how easy they are to make, thanks to the tutorial by Wanda at the Exuberant Color Blog. We’re going to make it from Australian Aboriginal fabrics.

And tonight, to prepare for my friend’s visit, I finished cleaning my living room and vacuuming the entire house. And a quick touch up of the guest room. Then I took the boys out for a nice 9 pm two-mile walk.

When we got home I hit my sewing room and pulled the quarter log cabin blocks off my retractible design wall so it will be free for us to use while my friend is here. I carefully stacked and labeled the blocks to I can easily sew the rows and assemble the rest of the top.

We might have enough time to finish up this top tomorrow and Saturday night since we’ll have two people. We can’t start on my friend’s 16 patch until we do a little shopping on Sunday.

My brother and his wife will come up for a visit next weekend while my friend is here. I have some things I need my brother to do for me… he’s very handy. I’m going to have him hang some curtain rods for me. One for my bedroom window, and one above my bed to hang a quilt eventually… maybe my new color wash. Maybe my KFC scrappy trip quilt.

I will also have him hang one in my sewing room to hang my NY beauty wall hanging. You can see it, and my KFC scrappy trip quilt in this blog post.

One other little thing he’s going to do for me is attach a new latch to my Featherweight case to replace the broken one.

This is an actual vintage latch. Not a reproduction. So the store that sells them doesn’t always have them in stock. I’ve been on their waiting list for months. And they got some in jus tin time for my brother’s visit. Once this is done I might give that case some attention. It’s pretty beat up. I might try just cleaning it. If that doesn’t do the trick, I might paint it. There’s always a chance I’ll decoupage it with come KFC fabrics. I wouldn’t do it if the case was in good shape. it’s kind of a mess!

While all my company is here, we’ll go up to the Olympia, Washington, area because I have Rico entered in a sheep herding trial. It’s time to see how he can do in competition. it should be a fun day out for the four of us.

During one of our recent wind storms, a piece of a large sequoia tree across the street from my house fell and hit the house behind it. Yesterday they removed the remainder of the tree. This was a BIG tree. You can see the guy at the top, just below the foliage.

It was fascinating to watch him work.

And I got there just in time to watch him lop off the top of the tree.

I was talking to him later in the day and he said the tree was probably around 100 feet tall. He said he’s been up in trees that are over 150 feet tall!

I can’t imagine doing that for a living. It just gives me the shivers!

It makes me so sad to see that tree gone. It’s been the best part of the view out of the front of house since I moved here almost 13 years ago. I’ve always loved having it’s shadow cast into my back yard by the morning sun. I’m goin to miss it.

The good news is that I am the proud owner of a huge pile of former sequoia tree.

That’s a whole truck load of that tree all chopped up. My yard guys will come this Saturday and move it to my back yard to cover some bare dirt areas under some trees and in the way back portion. It’s a truck load of free mulch!

It’s been colder here the last few days. it was so cold yesterday morning, the little metal birds I have on the top of my fence, were all frosty.

And a few days ago I was convinced spring was here! We’re going to have a couple of cold days next week. They’re predicting a high of 28 degrees for one day next week! That’s really cold for Portland! But it’s going to be sunny, so that’s a good trade off for me.

Vacation baby!!! Two more days of work and it all starts!

Bender’s resting up to get ready for vacation.