Monday, September 29, 2014

Weekend Wanderings Giveaway!

We had a beautiful weekend and even though I am still dragging, I had to get out and enjoy it. For saturday we went to Bluff Point Connecticut. It was warm but cooler near the ocean with the breezes so  hiking to the bluff was the perfect place to go.

I love walks where the paths are wide and you have views of the water, most of the way. It is so calming and a great way to boost my spirit. At the end of the trail, there are the bluffs where you can look out at the ocean and see all the way to the islands off of New York.

The afternoon got warmer and there are no trees at the point, so we headed back and sat at the picnic area under the trees. A great place to cool down and enjoy people watching.

Sunday was even hotter, so I decided it was a good day for the bay. We started in the cove but went straight out to the bay and headed down the coast. I left the house tired, but once I got out on the water, I wanted to keep going, I love being on the water.

Since the tide was still high, we went to a cove and paddled around the perimeter. It was calmer in the cove and a good way to relax after paddling in the waves and against the wind. I always love seeing the old mill, they are condominiums now but they still have their historic charm.

In the middle of that area, there is a group of patriotic birds.

Another cove comes to the sanctuary where we go for walks, so no homes past this point. A touch of fall is just beginning in the areas closest to the sea.

We ended out trip at the outer cove. I went in to the waist, too cold to jump in;) It is a nice place to walk around and see what interesting things are hidden in the sea.

And now for the giveaway! I tried taking a photo when we were at Bluff Point and this guy ducked under, just as I hit the shutter. What do you think it is? You don't have to be right, all comments will be entered. The winner will receive any one of my epatterns, of their choice. I will pick a winner on Friday night and announce it, that night.

Friday, September 26, 2014

Friday Finish!

I am not sure if I should call this a finish or a mess, lol. I was thinking of making some yarn punched chair pads and thought it would be good to try a practice piece. I have an old cheese box and wanted something fun for fall and a pumpkin face seemed like a good idea.

With hooking  you can use a frame and move the piece around if it is large than the frame. With punch needle you need to use a frame that is the size of the piece or a hoop that won't damage the loops. I had a larger hoop and used that to trace the circle for the pumpkin. I drew a face on with a sharpie, something simple but fun.

The yarns I used were from a batch of old sears wool yarn for rug hooking. It was orange and I over dyed it with red so it is now reddish/orange and gives a nice variation. The black is lopi wool and the border was done by whipstitching around a half inch edge with an old wool, light brown.

As you can see from the photo, I made a mess, my stitches are uneven and in some areas I was too tight and it punched into the other loops. My fabric was not taught enough and would loosen, so some spots are higher than others. My hoop size was not big enough for the top of the cheese box, but it was a good learning experience. I learned that I would rather hook my chair pads;)

And another thing you will notice, it is not a circle, definitely a primitive scrappy piece.

Here is a close up of the wool yarns, so you can see the yarn textures. I hope everyone has a wonderful weekend. I am hoping to get out and enjoy the beautiful weather, that we will be having.

Monday, September 22, 2014

Weekend Wanderings!

This weekend was beautiful and I was sick, as well as my daughter and Bill got it too, so no hiking or paddling. I love it when we get a warm fall and we do have another nice week coming up, so hopefully we can get out on the water next weekend.

Even when I am sick, I cannot just sit and do nothing, it is not in my nature;) I have been working on small projects and decided a few hours of ocean air would do me good. We went to Jamestown which is an island and enjoyed walking around a bit and the fresh breezes.

The island has lots of coves and we found a new area to park at and walk around, beautiful views and a blaze of fall colors bursting from the bush.

Most of the parks on this end of the island, are sites of forts built to defend the coast. It is a mix of sadness and beauty, growing from the ruins.

We ended our drive at the lighthouse. A place to relax and rest as we watched the waves roll in.

I worked on some pumpkin ornies, I need to finish them, but that will come later in the week. I just drew them up on the weavers cloth and used scraps from my basket, something fun to add to my decorations on the tables.

Friday, September 19, 2014

Friday Finishes!

I was able to spend time working on projects this week and it was a great stress reliever, as well.
The first piece I finished was my Christmas wall hanging. The pattern is called Hang The Stockings by JoAnn Mullaly. 

For mine, I added some star quilting, in some areas. I also stained it, then let it sun dry so it got more of a splotchy effect. As the sun pulls the moisture away from the fabric, it leaves the walnut stain behind, so it is not as controlled but gives it more of a true aged look. It is hard to get a true photo of the piece since some colors pop and others darken too much, it is more blended and yellowed in person.

I needed something else to keep my hands busy so I made up another punch needle star. This time I used the cat design from Renee Mullins and extended the scarf into the bottom of the star. I was trying to raise the loops on the scarf but it didn't work out the way I wanted, I would have to go higher on the loops, so I will have to try another piece and practice my sculpting.

I still need to clean it up and fix some spots, then I will do up all of the stars, into ornaments.

Another thing I did this week was to antique a wooden cat, that I found. I can't pass up a .99 cent deal and will a little sanding, some antique medium and a rusty bell, he is now a primitive kitty. I hope you all have a wonderful weekend and hopefully I will feel good enough to get out and enjoy the good weather, we are  having.

Monday, September 15, 2014

Weekend Wanderings!

We had an easy weekend, the weather is cooler so no paddling and it was the first weekend of hunting season, so I decided to stay out of the woods. My son saw my photos of the aquarium and decided he wanted to go too, so we took him and Nicholas with us and got a guest pass that we can use for him or any one person we want to take with us. It is nice since anyone can go with us and it is a big money saver.

Nicholas hadn't taken a very good nap and was sleepy, but once we got to the aquarium he was full of energy. He loved watching the whales from the glass windows. He didn't like sitting in his stroller and wanted to run all over the place.

Inside there are lots of tanks with all types of fish, it was a day for smiles for Dad and son.

Going together was nice for dad too, while I watched Nicholas, dad got to be a kid again, too;) They have several petting tanks and this one had sharks and baby skates. 

Today I got the quilting done on my Christmas wall hanging, so all I have to do is finish off the binding and antique it.

Friday, September 12, 2014

Friday Finishes!

Another week of almost finished but I want to take the time to decide how I want to finish my new projects. I needed something to do and one of those weeks where I didn't have a lot of energy to get up and look through my books or work in my sewing room so I went with my old standby, needle punching.

I love doing needle punches when I have down days, I have all my supplies at hand, hidden in my tv cabinet, so I just got out some backing and drew up some designs to do. I also wanted to do something practical and with the holidays coming up, I went with something I could give as gifts.

I was going to go with a snowflake design, but way too many edges to sew it into an ornament so I took the main design and made it into a six pointed star which also gave me more room to add a design.

The first one I made using a design by Sandy Gervais of Pieces From My Heart. It is called fat cat and I thought it was a cute design but not sure if it shows well on a star, but still cute. I am planning on making it into a hanging ornament and antiquing it, after I stuff it. The red on his neck was my attempt at a scarf.

The second star is done with a design by Renee Mullins of Plum Purdy Designs. She also has free designs on her website. I like this one the best, the simplicity and design fit nicely into the star. I really had fun making these, so I am sure I will do more with other designs. The colors were lightened so you could see them better. The backgrounds were done with dmc variegated yellow/golds, they work nicely as fill in a star.

The first star was punched by going around the design and filling in, till I reached the middle, as you can see by the shape. The second was done by hooking in smaller areas in random directions, so you can see how different you can make your backgrounds by moving around the piece in different ways.

Monday, September 8, 2014

Weekend Wanderings!

After Friday's paddle, I crashed, that was a bit too much with the sun and paddling against the winds so we decided to do something fun without over doing it. 

Since we never get to the beach during the summer, except in our boats, we decided to go to the ocean and play in the waves. This beach is in Point Judith and the nice thing about it is, it is shallow, so you can walk out and play in the waves without dropping off.

The air was cooler at the ocean but the water was warm.

Going out to play in the waves.

Sunday I was still tired so I decided it was a good day to go to Mystic Aquarium. I haven't been since the kids were little and they had a lot of new things since we were there. We got a senior membership, so for the cost of two visits, we can go anytime for a year and bring Nick along for free, so looking forward to taking him.

They had a lot of beautiful sea displays inside, but it is hard to get good shots through dirty, scratched glass;) I think Jelly Fish are beautiful as long as they are not swimming in the ocean with me.

Not sure what these guys were, but they just looked funny and just sat in their little crate house.

Rock Fish hides with his surroundings. I was taking a photo and Bill was asking, where is it, lol.

I took a lot of photos but most were blurry or washed out from the sun, so next time I will try and go during a cloudy day or later during the day. I did take some video of the beluga whales, they put on a show for me and even made whale cries, but I cannot remember how to convert it for iTunes.

A new exhibit is the Titanic exhibit. There are a lot of fun interactive areas to enjoy and inside some of the rooms, you really feel like you are down in the deeps. Bill and I had fun being goofy on the bow of the titanic, but I forgot she was leaning forward, and posed wrong;)

To end the day, we went to another ocean beach. It was a beautiful day to go and not too crowded. This is East Beach in Charlestown, RI.

This beach was cold and deep, so I decided to sit in my chair and enjoy the views, perfect way to end the day. Now it is time for me to get back to a routine. Today I spent half the day cooking up things from the garden and the other half cleaning, so time for me to relax for the night and tomorrow I can get back to my sewing projects.

Speaking of sewing, I found a wonderful tutorial today. If you would like to make a fun and beautiful halloween bag, check out Christina's tote tutorial at Sometimes Crafter.

Friday, September 5, 2014

Friday Fun!

I am not sure if I had a good week or bad, lol. Bill took the week off since he has been working non stop all month, but plans don't always work out the way we want. The weekend was a bust, with the holiday, too many beach goers to want to go out and fight the traffic. Then I broke a tooth and had to go to the dentist, late in the day, so it killed any paddling on that day. Then I had to go back another day to get a regular check up and it took awhile with X-rays and cleaning. That will teach me to put off going to the dentist;) To top it off, my cheek swelled up so I look like a chipmunk on one side, lol.

The good thing is, we got to go out for a couple of days and enjoy some paddling, even though it was still a bit on the humid side.

We went to Barn Island which is off of the coast of Connecticut and paddled down a cove, then out to the island. The cove was long and calmer, fun to explore new areas.

We even spotted the castle. On the road side it looks more like a castle with gargoyles and stone work. From the back it is a mix of styles, but a beautiful place sitting on the marsh.

You can also find unexpected items while exploring. Why there is an old mini submarine in the marsh, I have no idea.

Today we went to Ninigret Pond. It is a saltwater pond that has a lot of coves and an opening to the ocean. As we came out of the launch, we passed a guy who was hauling in his oyster pots.

We explored a cove today, it was a nice way to paddle without the winds. There was a little spit of land with a duck blind on it, but I guess the birds didn't care.

After we paddled around the cove we came out to the pond again and the wind was blowing harder and I was getting hot and tired. The great thing was, it was low tide and there were sand bars in the middle of the pond. The perfect place to stop and go for a swim. After we rested we went to the ocean but the tide was coming in, along with hundreds of jelly fish, so I decided not to stay and swim there, lol.

And for those who would like a dose of cute, my son took a video of Nicholas and put it to music, just too sweet, love the little guy:) I hope everyone has a wonderful weekend!

Monday, September 1, 2014

Holiday Weekend!

I hope everyone had a wonderful holiday weekend. For me it means staying home and away from the crowds of people that hit the roads and the beaches to get in that last minute summer holiday. This week will be my fun week. Bill is finally taking time off so we can get out for some fun and the weather will be perfect.

I did have a fun day with my grandson. Time with him brightens up my day and he always makes me smile, he is just so happy and lovable that you can't help but be happy, along with him.

Since it was so hot, I sat him on the edge of the pool and he loved kicking his feet in the water. Last time he cried when I put him in, so we just sat and played a bit.

Then he started leaning forward and splashing his hands so we decided he was ready to go in. Of course I didn't have my suit on, so I jumped in with my clothes on, lol. He loved kicking and having me pull him around in the water.

Last week I took a photo and forgot to put it up. I have a few bunnies that visit and a couple of them stay close and know I won't hurt them. I took a photo of this little guy with my zoom and I didn't realize, until I saw the photo, that he must have escaped being coyote food. Better a piece of ear, than becoming the main course;)