Saturday, April 25, 2009

too late

As I published my post I noticed that I am "Grave' That should be Grace, I know that I can be grave but I would much rather be Grace in Ont. just now residing for three weeks in BC.

wonderful weather

Hi all,
I am enjoying the sunshine at the west coast. It is still a little cool but my face has a slight sunburn so I must be enjoying the sun. My chair just follows it. LOL
We had a great trip out here with minor problems. Been to the new house and it looks fantastic. DS and DDIL a doing a wonderful job in restoring and trying to keep to the way this house was.
Hope that Jean will be home before we go home so I can get in touch with her yet.
Need to find the favorite quilt shop again and see what I desire.
Have a great weekend
enjoy the sun where ever you are.
Hugs to all

Friday, April 24, 2009

The Confusion of Older Age...(grin)

Jane, the only place to have a retreat would be Ashville. There, at least, people can reach it via plane and there are things to do and see there. That said, believe me, as Grace and others will attest, it is a big job to arrange a retreat for people and after all that you've been through recently, you might want to pass this one by. On the other hand, Ashville and its location is beautiful. The Blue Ridge Mtns., breathtaking. From Ashville, people could strike out on tours, etc. but getting people to're are remote and it would be more bother for you and for them than to go to Ashville where there is more to see and do.

Weather here is becoming spring-like; the grass is magically turning green after a long winter of brown and the pool has had its first cleaning after the winter. We lost a lot of water for some reason...we're hoping whatever caused it isn't serious...the weight of the ice in January took most of the water down for some reason. I am relieved to see it holding water even though I spent an hour cleaning the winter's mud out of it yesterday that fell from or through the tarpaulin covering it. I enjoy winter but it's the in-between stage when it's neither one or the other here that isn't pretty or enjoyable with a mixture of storms and teasingly warm weather in-between cold spells.


Monday, April 20, 2009


I guess i can't complain about inactivity on the board or chat page. I check daily and am disappointed when there hasn't been a post in a week or more. However, I guess I'm part of the problem as I haven't done much to correct it.

I am feeling much better. The cortisone shot in the shoulder has helped a great deal and other pain sources are gradually easing. I've been working on more exercise so have more stamina, that is to say, some stamina so dirty dishes don't accumulate for three days before I clean up the kitchen.

As I have felt better I've thought about a retreat. On the other hand I don't want to bite off more than I can chew. There are several problems beyond my inability to organize anything more complex than a one man parade. The first and most obvious is the remoteness of my location (which is one of the most endearing characteristics of my digs). However, there is a daily direct flight to Asheville from Detroit and another from Newark. It's an hour's drive to Sylva from there and another half hour to my house. I assume that if I do this and anyone wants to come we will pattern things somewhat after Grace's retreat for similar reasons. There are a number of motels in the area, a Comfort Inn in Sylva and several others in Dillsboro right next door. The fun side trips all require some driving.
Franklin is down to two quilt shops, both quite nice owned by fellow members of my guild also located in Franklin. There is another quite small but nice one in Dillsboro. Smoky Mt. National Park is less than an hour from Sylva and so is the Blue Ridge Parkway. The Biltmore House (check it out on the net) is in Asheville and costs a bit to enter for the tour throughout but is a fantastic walk through the Edwardian period where the rich and famous resided. George Vanderbilt was a son of the Commodore, a shipping magnate. George, unlike his brothers, was an aesthete who spent his adult life collecting art from all over the world and making his home something of a museum. The gardens are extensive and one needs two days to do the whole thing. I suppose that's too much to tackle on a three or four day affair. Spring and fall are my favorite times here. The colors in the latter part of October are spectacular and attract leaf peepers especially displaced Yankees who live in FL so accommodations are pretty well filled although the tourist numbers are down for obvious reasons. As a wildflower and bird nut spring is probably my favorite. Just walking my property one sees an encyclopedic collection of flowers that rotate from March to May. It's a spectacle I missed last year. The migrating birds who nest north of here stop off to fatten up from their trip from the tropics. The woods are a regular concert hall sounding of all kinds of warblers that I don't have the patience to stand out there with my arthritic neck bent back looking for them but they sure are vocal. Some of my favorites stay and nest here. If you haven't heard a wood thrush playing his flute in the morning and evening hours you haven't quite lived a full life. Like Grace, I'd like to host a visit at my house which is far too small to spend much time here with more that two house guests. Now that my sewing room is respectable I'd love to show it off.

If we do this and want to do any quilting or sharing I could rent a meeting room at whatever motel we stay at and forget some of the ambitious sight seeing. Am I out of my mind? Probably so. If we were to manage to gather at a time including the second Monday of the month we could all troop into a guild meeting with lunch to follow. We always have a great show and tell mostly taken up with the charity baby quilts. Last week we had a little over fifty members in attendance.

Travel can be via Greenville/Spartanburg, Charlotte or Atlanta but they involve a much longer drive. Atlanta is a minimum of three hours involving very heavy urban traffic.

Well, this has been a stream of consciousness and not a full fledged plan or even an offer of one. I just wondered if anyone would salute the idea if I were to run it up the flag pole to use a rather stupid cliche.

I know many of us don't have as much play money as we did a year or two ago but I have decided to have as much fun as possible and if I drop dead with my home equity loan in arrears I won't much care, will I?


Sunday, April 19, 2009

surfacing, Hello

I have been reading pretty well every day. Keeping up with what you are all doing. Just have not felt well enough to post. Life has been having major crisis in our own family as well as with good friends. It is amazing how fast you can go into a tail spin and when it stop you are not sure how steady the ground is. Equally amazing that with some major good friends the world does right itself and life as we know it seems to continue on and you can again begin to smile at little things like rain drops.
Yes we have had a few of them, so much better than snow.
It has been a very long and hard winter. Seems to me the longest ever in my life, but then maybe it was the circumstances.
It has been nice to see some long ago poster posting at times. I do miss having to read a lot of post every time I come on board.
Have not been doing too much sewing except our Cancer quilts. That never seems to take a break and lately it seems as if there are more people that we personally know. Some are actually becoming survivors ( just a term that is used) Because we always have and pray that every one beats it. Unrealistic I know but it is what keeps us going. Since our little group started in our small area we have giving away over 200 quilts. I am so proud of our little group they are absolutely the best . Some of the girls that were here for the retreat have seen pictures and our scrapbook and will know what I am talking about. I wish I could share with you all some of the letters we receive. Thank Goodness for the old time quilters from the area that I live in because without them we could not accomplish all we do. Like I said the ladies are the best.
My DH and I are leaving for Vancouver Island again on Tuesday morning. Hoping for a little nicer weather than in Ontario. Must say though the last two days it has been gorgeous, but we are to go below freezing again tonight and the next couple of nights. I am looking forward to the trip though. Hope I am there long enough for Jean to have come home again. read that she has gone on a trip herself.
Looking forward to another retreat at some point. Miss all of you, and I am not mentioning names. Would love to meet more quilters , so I could say miss a whole lot more
Take care and god speed to all
Grace in On

Lady slipper, weather, and school

How lovely! I don't think those grow around here.

I have a question for those of you living in the southern-midwestern US. Is the weather more unsettled than usual for this time of year? It sure seems that way to me. Maybe it's just that we've had such drought conditions for so long now that I've forgotten the usual spring weather patterns.

We only have about another month of school. I have way too much to cover, and not enough time to do it, especially since we're required to waste at least 6 days in standardized testing instead of instruction. I know that the government thinks it has to measure the students' and teachers' progress, but 6 days! Furthermore, the kids seem to be less and less prepared when they come to me, and less and less willing to do any work at all. I teach Algebra II and Trig, and I've been re-teaching Algebra I to the Algebra II group before I can present the related Algebra II topics. I asked the Trig kids to memorize some common Trig facts that we need to use repeatedly, gave them more than 8 days to do it, gave the quiz once (really bad scores), and then gave the quiz again, and the grades on the quiz range from 27% to 100% (the second time I gave it!) There was only one person who scored higher than 80 %!

I've been teaching since 1978, so maybe I'm just a dinosaur.

I just sent off registration money to an inservice training workshop. It's going to take a week of my time, but I hope it will be more informative and a whole lot more interesting than the local "inservice" workshops. It's supposed to be on ways to combine the teaching of science and mathematics.

I'm almost finished piecing my mother's quilt. I need to finish grading papers and get some more done tonight.


Lady Slipper

It's so fun to finally be able to post a photo that I'm adding another one. :-) This is a wild Lady Slipper. I used to see them a lot when I was much younger but they are more difficult to find these days. I think it was about 45 years ago that I last saw one. Aren't they gorgeous little things?
Mary in Oregon

Australian bushfire quilts

YEA! I tried for about two hours this morning to post this photo. These are some of the quilts that are going to Australia for the victims of the February bushfires. I'm sorry the picture isn't better and not all the quilts are visible. It's been difficult for me to find a way to display all of them at once. At least you get a visual of what they look like.
Hope everyone is doing well!
Hugz, Mary in Oregon