Monday, August 21, 2017

Mon Oeuvre - Dogs in Sweaters quilt progress: Completed!

"Oeuvre" (the works of a painter, composer, or author regarded collectively: "the complete oeuvre of Mozart" a work of art, music, or literature: "an early oeuvre" ORIGIN late 19th cent.: French, literally ‘work.’ - Oxford Dictionary.)

Last week I had finished my quilt sandwich
This week was very productive. I learned a new skill. I haven't done any free motion sewing with my Pfaff yet, so I decided this quilt would be my first experiment. I did practice a few on scraps first. 
Dog bones!

I cut the binding.

I sewed all of the strips together, folded it in half, then ironed it.

I sewed the binding to the quilt sandwich.

There, now the quilt sandwich has all of the binding machine sewed to the edges. Then I trimmed the batting to 1/4 away from the binding edge.

Time to hand sew. The corners are mitered. I also am getting better at hiding my stitches, when I hand sew. This is the best hand sewing I've done on a quilt yet.

I got up this morning and took my completed quilt picture before the eclipse, just as the sun was rising.

Here's another look.

What a fun project. The directions were easy to follow. Now I think that if I do another one, I would make all of the blocks much smaller and have more little weenie dog blocks on the lap size quilt.

Progress links for this quilt:

Monday, August 14, 2017

Mon Oeuvre - Dogs in Sweaters quilt progress 3

"Oeuvre" (the works of a painter, composer, or author regarded collectively: "the complete oeuvre of Mozart" a work of art, music, or literature: "an early oeuvre" ORIGIN late 19th cent.: French, literally ‘work.’ - Oxford Dictionary.)

This week I got all of the sashing. spacers, borders cut and sewn.
I took a picture of this "sun-dappled" top or "flymsy" outside. All of the piecing of the blocks were sewn on my Singer "Betsy" as in "Betsy Ross". If you remember, Betsy was the 1955 Singer 99k that we found "free" in someone's yard. Yes, I named her & she is a girl.

I also completed the quilt sandwich - which is the backing, batting and top. I put the layers together with spray adhesive. next I will machine stitch through all of the layers. The binding fabric will need to be cut into strips and sewn together. The last step will be to sew the binding to the quilt.

As you can see, I tweaked the pattern abit. I spaced the dogs more equally on the quilt. The "small sized" quilt pattern had them all to the right.

My quilt measures 46" x 60" without the binding.
I think the scrap fabric from my en Provence mystery quilt is working out just fine for this "Dogs in Sweaters" quilt pattern.

Progress links for this quilt:

Friday, August 11, 2017

Baker Lake trail Backpacking trip

In July we backpacked the northern end of the Baker Lake trail as far as Noisy creek, you can read about that trip HERE. On Tuesday we began our backpacking trip at the southern end and hiked towards Noisy creek again. Our purpose for doing this was to complete the entire length of the Baker Lake trail this summer, linking our two separate trips. Our plan for the first day was to hike as far as Maple Grove. I'd only been there once before, it was so many years ago and I didn't really remember much of it.

Day one -

I like this bit of info. from the Forest Service website. "This trail leads into a majestic stand of Douglas fir that regrew after Mt. Baker erupted and started a forest fire in 1843. You can still see the burned snags of the cedar trees that once dominated the area." 
The trees were magnificent.

The Anderson creek bridge had been repaired this summer, and it was a treat to cross such a well made bridge across the creek.

We headed down to Anderson Point for lunch. 

I happened to glance over at my husband as I was eating and noticed he looked like a silhouette. I love this picture.

Then it was on to Maple Grove.

It was warm when we got to camp, so after setting up the tent we went for a cooling swim. The water was perfect.

The haze in the air from the B.C. fires cast a pink glow around us. We walked over to the dock to watch the sunset behind Mt. Baker.

The photo below is from our campsite. I loved our little rock island with it's tree just off shore.

Day one Garmin stats:
total miles hiked - 4.72 miles (this includes our wandering in and out of Anderson point)
total ascent - 449 feet

Day two -
Wednesday's hike would take us to our connect location, Noisy Creek. If you've read my blog much you'll know that I love wilderness toilets and think that there really should be a 5 toilet roll rating system for them. The two at Maple Grove were great. The one by the campground was surrounded by a wonderful "grotto" feeling forest scene.

Near the trail junction there is a newfangled conveyor belt toilet. It was interesting. Here, I'll give you a look inside. After you do your business, you push the foot pedal down 5 times and it's all gone. Amazing! I give this a 5 star toilet roll rating.

Leaving Maple Grove and heading to Noisy creek.

Rest break and trying out the timer on my camera.

Just before Silver Creek campground we came to the bridge that I took a picture of in my first section blog post. In that post I wondered what was beyond the bridge and here we are crossing it from the other direction. 😎

We ate lunch at Silver creek and then made our way to Noisy creek.

Noisy creek is the point in the distance in the photo below.

When we got to camp we set up our tent and went for a swim. I rinsed out a few of our sweaty clothes and hung them on a line to dry. We ate our dinner on the lake shore.

I really enjoyed the campsites that we had at both campgrounds.

Day two Garmin stats:
total miles hiked - 6.34 miles (including our lunch at Silver creek campground)
total ascent - 768 feet

Day three -
Thursday was to be a long hike day. Our plan was to hike all of the way out.
I took a morning photo of the lake before we left. It couldn't have been prettier. As you can see the sky had really begun to clear, we even saw a white moon and stars in the night. Since the haze has been in our air we haven't seen stars at night and the moon has been an eerie red.

Coral root

A nice mossy trailside chair courtesy of mother nature.

We had lunch at Maple Grove, and enjoyed the dock view again.

Anderson Creek bridge again.

Day three Garmin stats:
total miles hiked - 10.33 miles
total ascent - 1306 feet

Well our three day backpacking trip couldn't have been better. The trail in it's entirety is wonderful.
Now we are thinking of driving down and leaving our bikes at one end. Do a thru hike, when we get to the other end get on our bikes and pedal to our car at the other end. 
Now that would be an adventure!

When we opened our car doors to put our packs in, we were met by quite the surprise. "MANY" mice had partied in our Van while we were away. There wasn't any food in the car, so they must have just used it for a cozy place to play at night. Poop was everywhere. Ugh, but now I'm happy to say it's all vacuumed and washed out. I hope they had fun, because they sure left a mess. I picture them with little party hats on their tiny heads, and one of them playing a Ukulele while they danced the night away.

Thursday, August 10, 2017

Rafts on the Nooksack

How many days and how many vehicles does it take to do a single day float on the Nooksack? 
Day 1 - Saturday was spent getting the rafts ready and loaded into our Van. Sunday we shuttled my car to Hovander farm in Ferndale for our take out point. We then drove our Van with our rafts and gear back home from Ferndale to get our Pathfinder, we then drove both cars to Riverside park in Everson for our day of rafting. The Pathfinder is our raft inflation vehicle. We don't use the Van for this because the battery is in a crazy location and we can't use the Pathfinder for hauling and filling because everything doesn't fit in it. Hence, three cars.
Day 2 - Sunday we had a family outing planned to raft the Nooksack. The air quality hasn't been great around here because of the wildfires in B.C. but it turned out to be O.K. on the river. We had a good breeze blowing, especially the latter part of the day. While we were waiting for the rest of our group to arrive, we began the task of setting the rafts up.
We take everything out of the Van and begin the process of filling up the rafts with air and putting the seats and frame onto them. We hook the pump up to the Pathfinders battery for the pump. 

All ready, just need the crew to arrive.

The rafts and then all of the gear had to be carried to the river.

The rafts and their crews.

We set up the yellow raft with a rowing frame and the larger blue raft with a paddling set up. Each person in the blue raft had a paddle. Less chance of boredom 😉.

To start the trip off right we had a great water fight!

The upper section of the river had quite a lot of branches and trees down that we had to navigate around. The lower section was very slow, hardly any current. So the last section was spent paddling a lot especially with the wind coming up river for the last few miles. We rafted the Ski to Sea route of the Nooksack, just over 18 miles. 

When the river got really slow the men switched rafts, my husbands rowing arms were getting tired so he paddled the rest of the way. My job on these trips is to drive for the shuttle, watch for obstacles in the water, to help load and take down before and after, to look beautiful in the front of the boat and to photo document everything - of course!

High and dry roots.

We had planned to take out at Hovander, but the wind was blowing hard against us and the day was getting long. We still had the car shuttles ahead of us, so it was decided to take out at the boat launch just before Hovander. We carried the rafts up the launch and put them in the field. 

Everyone that stayed with the rafts took care of the take down and deflating of the rafts and waited there while my daughter and I walked to Hovander (about 1 mile by trail) to get the shuttle car. We stopped at Ferndale and got some food for the starving rafters first, then made our way to Everson, where my daughter got her car and I got our Van (we left the shuttle car there). We then drove back to Ferndale to pick everyone up and load the equipment into the Van. We said our goodbyes to our family. My husband and I then drove to Riverside park in Everson to bring the shuttle car home. Then we drove the Van back to Riverside park to get the pathfinder. Whew, finally all of the cars were home.

Now it's day 3. 
The rafting trip is never over until the rafts are refilled with air, cleaned and dried thoroughly before they're packed away.

It's always worth it though!
What a great day together.