Sunday, November 26, 2006

Getting Ready for Christmas !

As you can see this is the porch window display I present every year. I made these hangings many years ago when I was starting to learn to make quilts.

The wreath making is so fun. As long as the sun shines! My DD Penny made the "Rosie Reindeer" about 14 years ago. I have been asked many times for the pattern! The toddlers want to "kiss" her! The decorating starts the day after Tday. As we open the tree farm that afternoon.
(Nothing like starting early I always say!)

Sunday, November 19, 2006

Fall Into Christmas

Our Japanese Maple tree is the epitome of fall colors. The photos are real, no "touch ups", I must look at it a "zillion" times during the day because I know in a short time it will disappear and I will have to wait a whole year for it to reappear!! As the sun shines on this tree at a certain time in the morning, the colors "float" thru the window and saturate the room!This week and the following weeks will be our busiest of the year as we prepare to open our Christmas tree farm! Everything comes at once as the fall colors fade into Christmas greens! I can't wait for the "folks" to drive in to cut their "perfect" tree. Their children are so excited! Everyone is so happy to celebrate the birth of Jesus. I am starting to decorate already w/my Christmas quilt and wall hangings in the windows (yes, they are protected from the sun!) Some of our tree buyers are also quilters and wannabe quilters who enjoy the(eye candy) display

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Sun Bonnet Sue and the Last Rose of Summer!

I just realized that the story that went along w/these photo were "dumped"! Geez whiz. Well, I will try and tell the story again. I was wandering around in the garden soaking up the colors of the birches,walnut and sycamore trees and trying to decide what was I going to use as a "prop" for the up coming "Crayon Quilt Workshop" at the llqg . God listens in the garden, at least in our garden! I later visited a quilty friend and she said she was using a transfer Sue as a project for dishtowels.....duh.....I had some also.. where were they? When I returned home I opened a "stash" cupboard" and my hand went right to the "to do" box! There was Sue and Mother! I practiced on a "chicken" tracing and coloring at the workshop. ( can't see it yet!) I have not colored for years. Staying in the lines is a real challenge! A few days later a couple of friends came over for a "sew day" and we each worked on different projects. So...this is what I have done so far. I hope to make a lapper. Stay tuned!

Monday, November 13, 2006

Quilt Guild Happenings

I am really getting excited already for the Ladies of the Lake Quilt Guilds ( 2007 Falling Leaves Quilt Show. It is always the first weekend in October! We had a quilt show committee meeting today and we are committed to having as wonderful a show has we had this year! The entry's were up over 200 and the attendance this year far surpassed the 2005 show. I am secretary of the guild and have learned so much from my "sister guild quilters" !
This seemed like fun to read on others blogs and so I wanted to share my "done that,been there" also! I am only going to post 10 this time. (Learned that from another quilter blog)

1. Taken a quilting class.
2.Paper Pieced!
3. Hand quilted!
4.Gone on quilt retreat!
5.Made a baby quilt!
6.Made a wall hanging!
7.Made fabric postcards!
8.Mailed out the postcards!
9.Made a lap quilt.
10.Made a full size quilt.

Friday, November 03, 2006

Here's Rosy!

Mini Flying Geese

November entered w/a hard rain! It also took me to a Mini Quilting Group meeting I attend monthly! It is so fun. We never know what new challenge our "teacher" is going to present to us! Here is the beginning of the new one! These are "scrappy" flying geese "parts" in reds and greens, the sky is beige! I have sewn one of the four strips for this "mini quilt". It measures 2"X "11"!!! Hope to finish this before "next" year!!!

Sunday, October 29, 2006


I know you will expect photo's, but alas, there are none!! We spent a couple weeks up in northern California "flyfishing" paradise. Except I didn't fish...DH did,(this was a first "catch and release" trip, usually we eat fresh trout and always bring some home to smoke.) and I didn't even leave the confines of the motel except to wander a couple blocks to a fabuloush old fashion "dime store" that has everything you'd need for survival in a remote area. Even....fabric!!! A limited amount. Of course I did imbibe in several yards ! But, I actually rested and had taken handwork w/me that I started 2 years ago when we were in the same location!! I actually finished one embroidery sampler! I grew fingernails, rested my aching body and slept as late as I wanted. Even watch t.v. shows that I never have seen or even knew about! Didn't cook,do laundry,or make a bed! I LOVED IT! The weather was perfect w/fall colors every where.The population probably is about 1,200. Now that I am back to the real world, I have 2 decent looking nails left!!! Our little dog was sooo happy we rescued her from the doggy motel. I am so looking forward to seeing my "quilty" friends on the coming weekend at the monthly guild meeting.

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Falling Leaves Quilt Show Entry Results

You saw them before "They" all earned their ribbons at the Falling Leaves Quilt Show last weekend! What a beautiful display of over 250 quilts. Our guild members ( really put on a spectacular show. I am so proud of them!
The "Blue Goose Chase" was of scraps as was the "Around the World...Twice" ." Around the World ....Twice" was a scrappy creation. My Bday gift quilt "Delectable Mountains" is now able to come off the rack and be used by me. Just in time as the fall weather has arrived and today the east wind is blowing leaves all over the place. I am including "Caught in Disgrace" of our "terrior" Skipper, she was really mad that she didn't get to attend the quilt show I think and took her frustrations out on her cedar bed on the porch!!! She is 3 yrs and this is the first time she has "rearranged" her "stuff"!! What a character!

Friday, September 29, 2006

Turkeys Photos!

They finally came all the way in the front yard!! They are only about 30 feet from us!
We were eating lunch at the patio table and here they come across the creek bed and into the yard. We keep cracked corn thrown around there for the quail and doves. Now, the "big Jakes" (as the young turkeys are called) have asserted themselves to some good easy food!
Ever since they were just "turkey chicks" I have been waiting for the day they came "up close and personel"!! They wander our place and roost in the creek trees and in the walnut orchard in the back of our field! There are 13 total and a few more are lagging behind but do join the others.
For those of you who don't know, wild turkeys can see very well and are very alert to the most minute' movements. So, I had DH take these as he was sitting in front of me and didn't need to move as I would have! They have come every day for 4 days now! What made it even more special was we had house guest from Washington, my 75 yr. Sister,herBF and her daughter(our 49 yr.Niece) they were amazed !Hope you enjoy these priveledged photos as I do!

Sunday, September 24, 2006

Canning Time!

The past week has been jammed w/picking apples,peeling,chunking them along w/all the other ingredients for my DIL and I to make our annual batches of Chutney. This is the only time of year we get for a one on one day! She is a busy gal works as a Labor Delivery RN at the local hospital. I didn't get a photo of us doing our "thing". But....after our son returned from a very successful salmon fishing trip on the Klamath River w/a friend he asked that I smoke and can the "Catch"! So..of course how could I refuse. Here are the results in photos ! sure was worth staying up until late one night for a second load in the smoker. But...I am exhausted!! Mmm.... where does all that energy go I used to have! It sure tasted good! The whole house still carries the delicious aroma! DS said when he came to help pack the jars full:"Mom, this is a 3 way split"! I didn't argue w/that! Of course then it was "tasting time"!

Monday, September 11, 2006

Carmelite House of Prayer

Wanted to share these photo's of the Carmelite House of Prayer in Oakville. Just about 1 1/2 miles from Hwy 29 on the Oakville Grade. We attended the annual fund raiser BBQ Sunday afternoon. It is overlooking the Napa valley. (Airal view by someone else!) It was built as a "summer home" for San Francisco affluent in the early 1900's! It was occupied by others before the Carmelite Priest . (It is a very inspirational place of worship.) The background shows a "lily pond" and to the left the ponds trickle into others w/lilys. It is beautiful and the swimming pool was filled in. Where the silent auction tents are is where the pool was. I would guess at least 500 + attended. It was all organized by volunteers that support the Carmelites. The "ragtime band" provided continous soft background music! My DH attends 1st Saturday Mass there every month. If you are ever in that area "go see", you can't imagine the beauty.

Saturday, September 02, 2006

Another Fair!

What a surprise I had when DH and I went to the local fair! Of course we went straight to the main hall where the quilts are on exhibit. The flannel lap quilt "Dancing Leaves" I entered recieved a 2nd place (red) ribbon in its catagory. Wow,I was really pleased! Then as we made our way back to where the individual blocks were displayed I was again "bowled over", a 1st place blue ribbon was attached to the"Contrary Wife" blocks.(see that blog for photo!) Remember, I said in a previous blog, that I only thought it would be fun to have the blocks made into a raffle quilt? Well, $25. comes w/1st place!!! Yippee, looks like 3 yards of fabric to me! I thought you would like to see "Mickey" by another quilter, it is sooo cute! The next day I helped out again at the "Ladies of the Lake" ( guild booth selling Oppourtunity Quilt tickets, the same as at the last fair w/ quilt car, brought attention to us and my shift partner and I did have quite a few sales. Now fair duties are ended. Next month is the Falling Leaves Quilt Show the first weekend in Oct. It is "crunch time" I still have some bindings calling me to finish up for entry in the show! Hope you all can come to see the show. There are 250 entrys, some are for sale!

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Contrary Wife!!!

This is the final choice I have made for my participation in the local fair "block entry". It is as the title states: Contrary Wife! I love the title. (I am sure at times it describes me!) I found it in my new program. The mail lady finally brought me the fabric just 2 days ago. I have fussed w/this until I think: "What the hay, it is only for fun and I love the colors!" The colors are a raspberry and apple green chosen by the "authorities". I found this fabric on line hoping it will please them! Actually just the participation and knowing that my two entries will be joined w/all the others to make a quilt to be auctioned off is enough satisfaction for me!! (However, the prize $$ would buy a couple yards of fabric!)The block is a little crooked; as the photographer( me) is not a pro!!! I have it on my "sticky wall" and when it sticks....that is it! Here are a few of the Ukiah fair quilt photos, I hope you enjoy them. ;D

Thursday, August 10, 2006

A" Little" More About Me

The WeatherPixie

The first 9 years of my life was spent growing up on the military base on Angel Island in the San Francisco Bay! I am the youngest of six children. What great memories of my childhood! My father was a career Army man, he retired from the army after the end of WWII. We were one of the last family's to move from the "island". My Mother , A Russian immigrant who learned to speak English to obtain her U.S. citizenship, never mentioned that one day someone would send a gift to me, by USPS, simply addressed to : "CHRISTMAS TREE Lady" (town),CA. Wow, the postal service always delivers! Potter Valley was my parents choice for retirement after the military and so began my "farming education". We had a few acres and could have a garden, cow and chickens and I loved that place. We moved to Ukiah when I started high school! Many years later I married DH ( God has blessed us with 41 years of married bliss!) DH, then a pear farmer, and also a licensed Pest Control Advisor monitoring other farmers pear orchards. Together we raised our 5 children, and yes I learned to drive a tractor. During frost time when the frost alarm would ring at various times in the early a.m., I would tow DH in his homemade "chariot" holding a flame thrower to light the orchard heaters. When we began pear harvest I drove the tractor w/a bin mover on it, also while sorting pears that were being picked and put in the bins to assure that only quality ones were taken to the pear packing shed of which we were members. As our three son's grew up they relieved me of the tractor job!! With the continual sea of paper work that it takes to operate any farming business I was able to draw on my business courses from both high school and community college.
In the 1970's it became apparent that there was a need to educate and inform the majority of our population about the food and fiber they are dependant upon was being supplied by a minority of the population: the dedicated farmers. I then became a charter member of the local county chapter of California Women for Agriculture, a non partisan organization. We felt the need to speak up for the busy farmers that were attending to their crops and could not leave their fields. Serving as the chapters first V.P and then President was a great privilege and experience. One of the speeches I gave starts out: "FARMERS ARE GAMBLERS IN DISGUISE", (they gamble on their crops, weather, workers and the market place.) That speech always amazed the listeners, as the average consumer never looks at a farmer as a "gambler". (The food is always on the grocery store shelf!) Assisting with local county elementary classroom presentations of "How Pears Grow" was always enjoyable. Our annual yard sales were a huge success and allowed our group to offer scholarships to local college students pursing An Ag related degree. Meeting w/ CWA members from all over the state of California, some who were "urban dwellers", some farm wives all who were as dedicated to preserving and educating the public about agriculture, was also a privilege. We learned from each other and that gave us the ability to speak to the non-agriculture sectors of our populated great state about issues that affected agriculture. Meeting w/our legislators in Sacramento is a plus to tell our story. I have changed my member ship from "very active" to "very supportive" as I now purse other interest that is less stressful. (Quilting!!)
Starting our choose and cut Christmas Tree farm was a huge gamble and departure in 1982, from operating our former pear orchard. I am still the "support" person. It took us several years of research before we "pulled" our 24 acre pear orchard. As in any commercial farming enterprise it is not for the "faint of heart". It is a huge commitment. We are committed to offering the"just right tree" to our customers that return every year. DH and part time helpers do all physical work that goes in to the growing of our trees. As the Thanksgiving turkey roasts in the oven we are busily preparing to open the "farm" the next day. We greet our dedicated customers with a "sincere "Merry Christmas" and we see the growing and expanding of families, keeping their tradition. They always share w/us how their year went and how long they had their tree up. (One year a lady kept hers up until Valentines Day). Over the last 19 years of selling trees, those that came w/their parents are now bringing their children. Many newlywed's come for their first tree. It is a honor when when of them comes w/their first born and says they hope we will be here for their grandchildren. (I do not think so!)