Milwaukee Bound

We have headed to Milwaukee for a visit with family.  Brrr!  It is cold up here!  My blood has gotten thinner from wintering in the southern states.  There isn’t much snow here and driving around the scenery reminds me the most of what I disliked about northern winters.  Everything is varying shades of gray and brown.  It is a stark contrast with the colors of Florida where the azaleas and camelia’s are full of blooms.  The citrus trees are loaded with blooms and the smell is intoxicating right now.

The great part about this trip is that we are able to have some time with our family.  Parents, siblings, kids and grands all make for a very happy visit.  Hopefully, we can squeeze in a little time with friends as well.

Life is Good!

Knitting Projects

 I was going through some pictures and found some of my past knitting projects.  I remember knitting these things for some very special people in my life.  Andy wanted a zip up sweater that would be warm and comfortable.  I had him choose the pattern and color so that it would be a sweater that he would actually wear if I went through the time of knitting it.

Andy’s Sweater

The sweater was knit in a wool yarn.  A very nice and soft wool yarn.  A pricey wool yarn.  It was put into the washer by a well meaning friend and that was the end of that gorgeous sweater.  Next time it’s synthetic yarn for him.

 

The following four shawls were knit for my sisters one summer in Maine.  The yarns there are so great.  All of these were made from yarn from sheep raised in Maine.  The wool was processed. spun and dyed in Maine.  I picked the colors and patterns especially for each one and sewed a satin pouch for each to store her shawl in.  I loved doing them and hope they are loving using them.

Sister Shawl

Some Quilt Finishes

I have some quilt finishes to show this month.  I completed them late last fall.  The tops had been completed but they hadn’t been quilted and bound.  All of the above are finished and tucked away waiting to be loved by someone.  Even this last little quilt called thimbles is completely done.  This pretty mini is hanging on the wall in the fifth wheel.My Hummingbird quilt has been passed to my friend Lisa at Lisa’s Creative Quilting and I should have it back and bound within a week.  I am so excited to see it done.  Stay tuned for a photo.

Celebrating Friendship

I had the opportunity to connect with a lovely lady that I met twenty plus years ago through the AOL quilting group.  Sue and Frank are in northern Wisconsin for their annual north woods vacation.  We met for breakfast and enjoyed updating each other on our lives, our kids lives and our grand kids lives.  We laughed and reminisced and we cried a little too as we were missing our right arm friend, Karen.  We lost her a few years ago to cancer and hardly a day goes by that we aren’t reminded of what a great friend and inspiration she was and still is to us.

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In our lives we are lucky to be blessed with people that encourage us to be better than we think we are.  Karen and Sue are two of those people in my life.

Good Times With Family

We have been in Oak Creek since Saturday and it has been a fun packed week.  We started in Merrill with our great nieces graduation party, picked up my parents and headed to Oak Creek for my sisters 60th birthday party.  We have been getting together for meals and visiting and more meals and more visiting.  Our daughter flew in from Tampa along with two of our grands.  That brought on another round of visiting and good meals.  I think this may be a five pound vacation.

We have been playing Wizard most nights and we all enjoy this card game.  Our six year old great niece Olivia was bound and determined to learn the game.  So first thing this morning we had a game with Olivia and by golly she is pretty good. It brought back a lot of great memories of playing card games with my grandma as a child.  She would come from the farm in Minnesota for a visit bringing fresh eggs and all the news from our cousins.  In between visiting, meals and shopping we would play cards for hours.  We laughed, talked and made wonderful memories.  Now we are doing the same a generation or two later.

The Hummingbird Quilt

It has been so long since my last post that I have forgotten if i have shown these photos….  bear with me.

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This is a sixteen block quilt that I began many years ago.  Finally all of the blocks are finished.  I can get them joined together and start appliqueing the border.  Perhaps in the next year or so I will have a completely finished quilt to show you.

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So Much Inspiration!

We are in northern Wisconsin for a visit and I have had the opportunity to get together with my group of quilting friends.  Our group is called The Red Wagon club and these eight ladies are absolutely amazing with the amount of work that they manage to accomplish.

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Most of the quilts they make get donated within the surrounding area.  They go to nursing homes, veterans and other charitable organizations.  These ladies are such good friends!  They are all very positive and always encouraging.  I count myself very lucky to be included in this group.

Spring In Kentucky

We stopped In Campbellsville, KY to pick up our fifth wheel.  We had left it there in storage over the winter.  We had two days to unpack the car and clean up the rig before we headed to Wisconsin.  One nice afternoon we headed over to Green River State Park to do some exploring.  This little cabin was used as a surgery and hospital during the Civil War and the wood floors still carry the blood stains from that time.

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The trees are leafed out and the flowers are blooming.  This Rhododendrum was absolutely glorious!  Notice my red purse sitting on the rock wall next to it for a size comparison.

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Here’s a close up of the flower.

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This is a beautiful area of the park and a great place to visit the next time you pass through central Kentucky.

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Honor Flight Of Central Florida

Tom is a Vietnam veteran and a history buff.  Stories of World War I and II as well as more recent conflicts always catch his attention and his  extensive reading habits always gravitate to these conflicts.  Several years ago we became involved with the Honor Flight program as supporters.  The Honor Flight Program is a nationwide program that is dedicated to taking World War II veterans to Washington DC to view the WWII Memorial as well as some of the other sites in the capital.  The Veterans are treated with the dignity and honor that they so richly deserve and at absolutely no cost to themselves.  Each veteran is assigned a guardian to travel with them on the trip and that person assists with wheel chairs and anything else the veteran might need.  All meals are provided as well as the airfare for the veterans.  Guardians pay, usually between $400 and $500., for the privilege of traveling with their honored veteran.   We attend the welcome homes and help raise money to send the veterans on these trips.  Our daughter is amazing; teaching cookie decorating classes and funding this group in many ways.

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Tom was able to fly on the trip that went out last week and had a wonderful guy to escort all day.  They really hit it off and it was an amazing honor for Tom to be able to do this.

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They fly out early in the morning and arrive back late in the evening.  I was at the airport along with approximately five hundred other people to welcome these veterans home.  A band was playing all the old favorites like “Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy” and “Don’t Sit Under The Apple Tree” and the crowd sang along.

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We ran into some lifelong friends also at the airport to be part of the celebration.

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This is an amazing program and we highly recommend that if you ever have the opportunity to attend please do.  In past wars everyone felt the effects of being at war: they sold war bonds, rationing coupons made shopping a challenge and you learned to do without so much of what we easily purchase today.  Victory gardens were planted and cooking pots were turned in to support the soldiers.  Wives, mothers and sisters knit socks, hats and sweaters for the boys and supported the war effort in hundreds of other small ways.  For an inspirational read I suggest “Once Upon A Town: The Miracle Of The North Platte Canteen” by Bob Greene.  Today, unless we have a soldier on active duty, we don’t feel the effects of the wars we are waging around the world.  Our lives go on in much the same way that they always have.  To understand the sacrifices that were made by our previous generations gives a new appreciation to our lives today.