Monday, May 31, 2010

Memorial Day

May 31, Memorial Day

Thank you to all who made the ultimate sacrifice for our freedom (and also to all who served and are serving our country).

Oh, I think summer is here. - another beautiful but hot and humid day!

Gas at the beach $2.64 today - it has come down!

This morning we went to the Wright Brothers National Memorial. (It is only 1.5 - 2 miles from us.) Interesting and informative. Hard to believe that 66 years after that first flight, we had a man on the moon!

This afternoon we went north to the flag shop. I think Ray really enjoyed that!! I’ve spent part of the day working on the newest quilt.

Not sure what’s going on tonight…

Sunday, May 30, 2010

Friday, May 28

Great weather. Spent time at the beach. Found a place with fresh seafood - we cooked a wonderful shrimp dinner. We are slowly figuring out the streets so we can get around without getting on the main highway - the traffic is getting bad!

Saturday, May 29

Overcast today but warm and muggy.

Went to Roanoke Island to the Farmer’s Market. It was on the waterfront and looked like a small craft fair with all of the tents. We enjoyed blueberry scones and bought some produce and almond strudel (Oh the power of samples!).

We walked around the waterfront and visited a few shops including the only quilt shop in this whole area - there were 4 quilt shops a year ago but only 1 survived the economy. Hard to believe that I found fabric to buy! Actually I saw a kite yesterday that is the inspiration for a new wall hanging. I have spent some time trying to draw what I want - it should be interesting.

We decided to rest this afternoon due to my back and leg. Ray got to watch the Cubs win. Go Cubs Go!!! Dinner was great - we cooked fresh tile fish. We did get in our walk this evening. Now we are watching the Blackhawks and I think it is time for fresh strawberries.

Sunday, May 30

Sunny and hot! Great day at the beach - really glad we have a beach umbrella. Used outdoor shower when we got home - nice!

Whenever we get a decent wi-fi connection, we'll try to post pictures!

Thursday, May 27, 2010

OBX update

Tuesday, May 25

We slept in and were quite lazy this morning! Breakfast at Henry’s and then to the business of the day - groceries! After visiting Harris Teeter (which was fun - we really enjoy wondering through BIG grocery stores), we went to a fresh produce stand about ½ mile from our cottage. Fresh tomatoes and strawberries - what a find!

After lunch we went to the beach on the ocean side - riptide warnings and No Swimming signs were posted. We walked from 5th street to the Avalon Pier and back. It was very breezy and the waves were really rolling. Our glasses were covered with sea spray - it was amazing how much clearer the day was when we removed them!

Later we walked to the Front Porch CafĂ© and enjoyed mango/green tea smoothies. Weren’t sure about the flavor (the only flavor!) but after trying a sample, decided it was good! You don’t have to pay to use their Wi-Fi but you do have to be a customer.

After dinner we walked about 2 miles around our neighborhood. (I finally dug out my pedometer tonight.).

The weather has been wonderful - mid 70s again today! Tomorrow we plan to head north to Corolla.

Wednesday, May 26 - Wild Horse Day

Got up early (for us) and headed north to Corolla. We went to the Currituck Beach Lighthouse and Ray climbed to the top.

hen we found a jeep tour to see the wild horses. There were two other people (a man and his college-aged daughter) and our driver, Mike. A few miles after heading north, we entered the 4 WD beach. There was a storm surge last night so the waves covered the beach and moved the dunes back. That means the beach wasn’t the easiest to drive on today. Besides the beach, Mike drove us back in the dunes. In the 4 WD area, we saw many horses, walked on the dunes in the superfine sand , got stuck in the sand, helped some guys in a truck get unstuck, saw a lot of huge houses… We were within 2 miles of Virginia when we turned to head back. It was a great trip!

After a picnic lunch, we did some shopping. In Duck, we were in a store that mainly sold clothes but also homemade fudge. The lady was just finishing a batch when Ray said something about licking the bowl. and she handed it to him! Oh, it was good!

On our way home this afternoon, we stopped to get more strawberries - they are sooooo good!

We are enjoying wonderful weather although it is still breezy. We still haven’t used the A/C!

Thursday, May 27 - Lighthouse Day

Up early - gorgeous day but warmer. Headed south to Cape Hatteras. The landscape is very different from here - not as many trees, the island is VERY narrow in some places, less commercial business and more open spaces. We visited the Cape Hatteras Lighthouse in Buxton and the Bodie Island Lighthouse which is under restoration. We decided not to go to Ocracoke because we didn’t want to spend all day in the car!

Fish tacos for lunch at Mulligan’s Raw Bar and Grill. Good! The peach cobbler was good too!

It was too hot for us to go to the beach - the high 80s and little wind. We visited a few shops. Then home to the A/C.

Now the sky is overcast and the temperature has dropped. I wore a sweatshirt for our evening walk!

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

We are in the Outer Banks!

We don’t have WI-FI so posts will be random.

Monday, October 24

It was hard to say good-bye to Brad, Sheila, and the kids. We had a great time visiting with them for 5 days. Sheila and Brad fixed a great dinner last night. I would guess that Grace’s favorite part of our visit was either the sewing or learning to do Sudoku puzzles; Jackson definitely loved the army men; Colter enjoyed our attention; Crosby seemed to like playing peek-a-boo. The kids get a little wound up when we are there so after we left them last night, we hope things started to get back to normal.

We arrived in the Outer Banks this afternoon. It was a bit of an adventure - the A/C on our car stopped working on Saturday and we stopped east of Raleigh to get it fixed today. Then we drove through rain and heavy rain. Shortly before we arrived, the rain stopped! Surely an omen that we are in for a great time!

Our cottage is cute! In 900 square feet we have a living room, a kitchen, a dining room, two bedrooms, a laundry room, and a tiny bathroom! We have a privacy fence around the tiny backyard which has two chairs, a table, a grill and an outdoor shower. It should be perfect!

Tonight we ate at Awful Arthur’s. Our landlord, Eric, recommended the place and told us about the portions so we shared a deep fried shrimp dinner with extra hush puppies. Ray added a bowl of clam chowder and I added a side salad - Why??? The portions are huge - we had 16 large shrimp, a nice serving of coleslaw, wonderful red potatoes AND we had that chowder, the side salad, and a dozen hush puppies!

After dinner, we walked out to the ocean; it was about 70 degrees with a good breeze. When we got ‘home’ we walked to the sound. Our neighborhood is mostly permanent residents and it seems pretty quiet. Think we’ll leave the air off and sleep with the windows open tonight!

We are catching up on laundry and trying to decide what to do tomorrow…..

Friday, May 21, 2010

A special day!

Yesterday was very special - yes, because we are here, but also because I was able to spend time with each of the kids one on one. What a gift!

When we arrived in the morning, Grace was at school, Jackson at preschool, and Colter was sleeping, so we just enjoyed Crosby. He smiles easily and is just a joy to watch.

When Colter got up, he went with Brad, Ray, and me to have lunch with Grace at school. After we got home, Crosby was sleeping and we got to play with Colter. What a game of hide-n-seek we had - he would tell one of us to shut our eyes, then he went to the kitchen and "counted", then came and told us he found us! He was really enjoying himself as were we!

Colter went for a nap shortly after Jackson got home from preschool. Everyone was busy so Jackson and I took a walk. We found the source of noises that he thought were alligators in a drainage ditch sheltered by trees - it was a house being built on the other side! What a wonderful imagination!

After Grace got home from school, she and I spent some time learning to use a sewing machine. She loved it! At first she sat on my lap and I ran the foot feed as she fed the material. Before we were done, she was doing everything and would have gone on all night if we'd had more to sew!

Tonight we get to go the Firefly Festival at Grace's school. It is going to be great!

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Fuquay-Varina, NC

We are here! We arrived yesterday and had a picnic with Brad, Sheila, and the kids last night. The two little guys have changed so much. 

Crosby looks like a little big boy - a little tank! He smiles easily and even laughed for me!

Colter talks and talks and talks. He just figured out he could swing on the playground equipment. He is a very busy little guy and loves showing us what he can do.

Jackson still seems serious but loves playing at the playground. He tried some new things with encouragement from his mom and day and was delighted with himself. He still seems like "little Brad".

Grace is still a sweetie. She doesn't like to have her picture taken but let me take this because she wanted to see what her hair was doing. We are headed to her school in a while to have lunch with her. 

Brad and Sheila are doing well! We are looking forward to a few more days here!

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Winston-Salem, NC

We have had a nice day - it even started without rain!

First stop was Sew What Fabrics in Wytheville, VA. They have more batiks than any place I know and I love stopping there. I even found a few batiks to buy!

Next stop was Sew Biz in Radford, VA. This place is in an old hotel from the late 1800's. They have so much that I'm not sure I could have seen it all if we had spent the day! It would be so much fun to come back for their camp in July. Since that's not going to happen, I bought some fabric to take with us!

We met some "new" friends for lunch in Dublin, VA. Alecia and David are the parents of our friend and pastor's wife, Amy. We ate at Fatz Cafe - great food - fried green tomatoes, ribs, chicken...! We were too full for the peach cobbler :( After lunch, we went out to Alecia and David's home. It was fun to see where our 'adopted grandchildren' spend their time in Virginia.

We took the old road from Fancy Gap to Mt. Airy (Mayberry). It is probably a pretty drive when it isn't foggy or raining! We arrived just as the stores were closing but had a few minutes in the Main Oak Emporium. Next time, we'll make sure that we have time to spend shopping there.

Tonight we are in Winston-Salem. We took a walk through the Hanes Mall - needed to work off some of that lunch! It is interesting that you have to walk through Penneys to get to the other half of the mall. See the map here.

We just got back from a late dinner and here I sit drinking my pop from my to-go refill!

Monday, May 17, 2010

Beckley, WV

A wet day! Indiana - rain. Ohio - heavy rain. West Virginia - rain. Flash flood warnings in Charleston, WV. The grass is green though!

We had lunch at Gramma's Pizza in Batavia, Ohio - it was as good as we remembered! We had forgotten that places around here refill your pop one last time as you are leaving with a to-go cup. Nice!

I have Quilt Shops of the US loaded on the GPS - I need to do a little work though. All that shows up is the name and phone number of the shop. So we follow the directions and have no idea of the address or the town. We are pretty sure Maynard's Quilt Shop in Gallipolis, Ohio, doesn't exist. Nor does Get to the Point in Point Pleasant, West Virginia.

Gas was $2.84 in WV today.

We are at a motel that we frequent often when we travel through this area. The motel is almost full - I guess they are training Coal Mine Rescuers. They didn't have the normal room we would rent so the desk clerk decided that Ray was in the military and gave us a suite with a big discount!

Time to work on that GPS quilt list.

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Crawfordsville, Indiana

This is day 1 of our May trip! Gas was $2.899 at home this morning. We left under overcast skies and drove through some rain. Tonight we are staying at the the new Hampton Inn in Crawfordsville, Indiana. Every room has a different black/white picture by the door. This is ours.

I love the carpet in the hallways:

Our room is very nice but no pictures posted - this netbook is taking too long uploading them.

We ate at the Creekside Lodge - same place we were sent to the last time we stayed in this area! Still good! Gas here is $2.529.

Police Week

We stopped at CherryVale Mall to see the Police Week displays this morning. Lots of departments were represented, but of course we were most interested in the Illinois State Police display. We happened to meet Brent, Emily, Mack, and Griffin in the parking lot on our way in. Mack was very excited to take this picture of his dad cleaning his car.

My favorite vehicle was this 1951 car.

The Police Memorial Wall was very nicely done. I know Brent and Emily spent quite a bit of time doing it and it shows! Sorry I didn't get a picture of it.

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Quilted Tablecloth

I was inspired by a photo of a quilt on Flickr and decided I wanted to make something like it as a tablecloth for our porch. The entire quilt is made from my stash so I guess it cost nothing!

The whole quilt is hand-quilted mostly with stars. I think you can see the detail in the border here:

This quilt definitely adds color to our screened porch!

Monday, May 10, 2010

A few more Snap Bags

Snap Bags are fun, easy, and quick to make and a great way to use up some of my fabric stash!

This bag is from a fat quarter that has been in my stash for a few years. I liked the purple lining with the flowered fabric.


I began experimenting and decided to add handles - just a little loop on the side.





The last four bags are all from fabric left from baby quilt projects.

When we get back from our trip, I have three young friends - girls ages 6, 8, and 10 - coming to make bags. I've been busy getting things ready. Since two of them have never used a sewing machine, it will be an exciting day! The 8-year-old keeps asking if we are seriously going to use a sewing machine! Yes we are!!!

Thursday, May 6, 2010

How To Make a Snap Bag

I wanted to make a Snap Bag and a friend gave me the address of a blog that had instructions. I thought I would expound a little on the instructions and post them here.

The measurements can vary greatly so I'll use a set of measurements and give some hints along the way.

1. Start with 2 squares (These could be two rectangles or just one large piece of fabric!) I used 2 orphan blocks that I trimmed to 9 1/4 inches square. I ended up with a bag that was 6 inches tall, 8 inches wide and 2 inches across the bottom.

2. Sew together the two pieces with a 1/4" seam. This seam is the center of the bottom of the bag.

3. Cut a piece of lining the same size as this piece. Mine was 9 1/4" X 18".

4. Sew the lining to the blocks, right sides together with a 1/4" seam using this method: 
First sew one short side. Then sew the other short side leaving an opening for turning. Now sew the long sides turning the already sewn seam in at both ends. This makes a nicer corner when you turn the bag right side out.

5. Turn the bag right side out. Press the bag, pressing the opening in the seam allowance as if it were sewn. 

6. Press approximately 1 1/4" toward the lining on both short ends. 

7. Stitch straight across the 1 1/4" close to the edge leaving the ends of the casing open.

8. With right sides of the bag together, sew one side using a 1//4" seam.

9. Cut two pieces of a metal tape measure about the width of your bag. Using tin snips, round off one end of the tape measure on both pieces.

10. Cover the ends with duct tape. Cut and trim the other ends at least 1/2" shorter than the width of your bag

and cover the ends with duct tape.

11. Insert the tape measure pieces into the casing of the bag with the numbers facing the RIGHT SIDE or OUTSIDE of the bag. (The outside of the bag is probably on the inside right now!) If you don't insert the tape correctly, the bag won't snap shut.

12. Sew the other side seam being very careful to not hit the tape measure.

13. All we have left is to make the bottom. (You actually can stop here and not do anything else to the bottom. Go to step 15.) With the bag still inside out, pin the side seam to the bottom.

14. Measure up about an inch and draw a line across. The measurement should be the same from the side seam to each side. My side seam just happened to be 1" from each side. Sew on the line. 

Repeat for the other side.

15. Turn the bag right side out!

I think any size square/rectangle will work for this project. You could add a shoulder strap or purse handles. This is just a neat bag - the perfect size for a small quilting project!


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