thankful and pinned

Happy Thanksgiving!  I only have Thursday off this year, but I had a great morning talking to my mom and pin basting this first small quilt.  I did a little hand stitching around the hexagon.  I tried tying some of it, but it didn’t seem right.  I will have to spend some time looking at it before I quilt it.  I have no ideas yet.

I hope you are having as lovely of a Thanksgiving.  Since my husband always cooks,  I pretty much just have to pick up a little.  He’s one of the things I am thankful for!  It’s hard not to feel blessed this year:  All my family is healthy and safe, from my parents down to my littlest nephew. Two boys that are doing great in school.  A solid roof and a new (to us) car. A new job that is still less stressful and more fun. Take care and have a turkeyful day!

July ufo- bike update

So my July ufo is this knitted scarf.  Now I am a fairly proficient at crocheting, but knitting is something that I never quite got the hang of.  A couple of years ago when my sister, Becky, was visiting, we went to the mall together.  Becky sews, crochets and works with beads, but like me didn’t knit.  The mall was hosting a knitting event.   They gave us each a skein of yarn and knitting needles and we both learned to knit.  Every so often I get it out and work on it.  I plan to make it long enough to use as a scarf this month.  It will be a good project because I have a little bit of travelling in July and it is portable.  By the way, my sister lives in Minot, ND, and her house is very likely damaged from the flood.  If you have any spare prayers for her and her neighbors, I’m sure that they would appreciate it.

Bike update

We were excited to get this postcard from Eliott yesterday.  He was in Forks a few days ago.  Now, he is in Port Angeles.  They will be heading to Seattle for the Fourth.

They really enjoyed Lake Crescent.  They went kayaking and jumped off  a cliff into the lake.  He said it was really cold.  Here’s a picture of the lake from their twitter, @dembikeboys:

denim quilt

Thankfully, my commitment to writing here every Thursday and Sunday has got me out of my little anxiety funk.  My oldest boy began his epic bike trip on Monday.  He got on the bus and rode to Portland via Kansas City, Denver and Salt Lake City.  Anyway, he arrived in Portland yesterday.  He and three friends plan to bike back to Minnesota over the summer.  After a couple days of sort of sleeping at night,  I laid down in the afternoon and took a nap yesterday.  I got up refreshed and much less worried.  I knew I needed to get something ready for my post. I only really have the cathedral windows denim quilt out and ready to work on.  So I put together a few blocks.

It was easy to put together.  However, I realized that each circle needs to have the square drawn on.  I plan to do that while I watch tv. 

The back looks great, too.  I will have to try to be more intentional about the value of the circles.  I did get two circles that were very similar together on the other sample right next to each other. 

Here’s a sample of how it will look with the colored squares.  I love the way it looks.  Now I have some decisions to make.  I am thinking about what color thread to use to edge finish the denim part.

Anyway, I will continue to post updates on this blog about my son’s trip to help family follow his progress but I plan to bring this blog back to my primary purpose: documenting my work.  In the mean time, if you are driving on the highway and see some bikers please go slow and be careful.  My boy could be among them.


A few weeks ago, I went to my uncle’s house to help my aunt and my mom clear out the clothing for my aunt who passed away in January.  It was really difficult to be at her house without her there.  I know that she has gone on to a better place, and is peaceful.  Still, it was hard to see her absence.

He was kind to allow me to have as many things as I wanted, and what a blessing that is to me.  I have been watching my money more carefully this year with graduation, and my clothing has fallen to the bottom of the list of my purchases. 

My aunt had beautiful taste in everything, and her clothing is no different. She picked the prettiest but still tasteful and useful things.  Her whole life was like that. She always kept her house carefully clean, but it was always warm and welcoming.

It’s a blessing that her clothes would fit me, and my uncle would take the time to include me when her closet needed cleaning.  She managed to give to me again, as she did many times when she was here.  This in no way makes me unique, she was just the kind of person who was thoughtful and kind.  I was a little nervous about the whole situation, until my friend at work told me about the sweatshirts she got when her father passed unexpectedly.  Every time she wears one she feels like she is being hugged by her father.  So these last few weeks, I have been hugged every day from above.


So last Monday, my eldest son and I went to see his college.  He has chosen a local community college right downtown here in Minneapolis.  I was a little disappointed he wasn’t going to my alma mater, the U of M, but since he is smarter than me, he looked at the economics of the situation and chose a community college.  He has a strong possibility of emerging out of the first two years of college with no debt.  I guess all those years of listening to his parents complaining about the student loans had some impact, too.  In any case, I went to look at the school with him.  I was so surprised at what a great school it was. It had beautiful views of the city.  They had huge amounts of technology.   Even though this is a cliche, I can describe it best as “state of the art”.

Anyway, as the representative showed us the school I became more and more excited with all the opportunities he will have.  I remember how I felt when I started college, like I could go in any direction. I feel the same way about him.  He is full of open ended potential.  All of these things washed over me, I got over excited and as I often do, a little weepy.  However, I held it together and didn’t become too embarrassing.  I just told him that I thought he had made a really good choice, and I was proud of him.  I told him he had so many choices there and I was excited for him.  Then I hugged him several times.  I can tell he was happy too.  He actually let me hug him without shrugging me off (ok, maybe I was a little embarrassing but he was very tolerant), and he smiled. Then, to celebrate, our whole family went out to Pepito’s for dinner.

Pepito’s is embedded in our family history so it was nice cap to the day.  When Steve and I  first moved into our house when I was pregnant with Eliott, our very first night that we ate dinner in this house, we sat on our little porch with take out from Pepito’s.  We watched the Flintstones on our little black and white tv.

Now, my big boy man is graduating from high school, going to college.  Time certainly flies.  This year is full of those mingled feelings of endings and beginnings, nostolgia and brand new experiences. This creates a huge hodge podge of feelings.  I didn’t know how much of child rearing is happiness and sadness all mixed together.  It is surprising that I am not even more embarrassing.


For those of us in Minnesota, spring is taking its sweet time coming.  Although this is mixed good and bad, since the heavy snowfall may cause some flooding if it doesn’t melt slowly, it is hard to be patient.   Some internal sun clock, not related to actual temperature caused my little impatiens to bloom.  I guess seeing the impatients’ little cheery blossom makes it a little easier to be patient.

Notice the snow outside.

Happy Spring!