Monday, February 27, 2017

Mon Oeuvre ~ Mythical Alphabet cross stitch progress 1

"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.)

In between my Mystery Quilt work, I'm also getting back to a cross stitch project that I started probably 40 years ago. Some of the blocks are beginning to color so I'll have to figure out how to brighten them up before I put them all together. I'm thinking about putting the finished alphabet into some kind of a wall hanging. I did a Gnome cross stitch project years ago that I actually had completed and made into a wall hanging.

As you've probably figured out I'm trying to "re-friend" some of my passions.
Here are the finished letters in the Mythical alphabet.

Now I'm working on the letter "O". 
I found when I got it back out and started trying to figure out where I am, my counting wasn't so accurate when I had been working on it the last time around. I'm not going to pick any stitches out but will continue on with it the way it is.

Hovander trail run

On Sunday (yesterday) we decided to head over to Hovander park for our 5 mile run together. There was a Northeast wind blowing against us that wasn't too bad while were running towards Slater road, but once we turned around to return to our car at the boat launch parking lot the gusts were strong against us. I looked at my weather app when we got back to the car and it said the winds were 24 mph sustained and 37 mph gusts. So we got in a good resistance training day in as well. Lucky us!
We went over to the Tennant lake and Fragrance garden parking lot and went up into the tower for our lunch. It was a welcome shelter from the wind. I took a 360 video of the view from the tower.

My husbands Starbucks cup and my reflection also did a cameo appearance in this short video. I'm sure my video won't get even a mention much less a nomination in the short film category in next years Oscar's 😉🎞🎭.

Monday, February 20, 2017

Mon Oeuvre ~ en provence MQ progress 12

"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.)

Putting my quilt sandwich together: I used adhesive spray to keep the sandwich together, and flattened out the wrinkles as I went.
This is the back -

and the top.

All together: backing, batting and top.

I stitched around each of the blocks by sewing all of the verticle rows first and then turning the quilt and sewing all of the horizontal rows next. I'm trying to decide if I want to continue to machine stitch designs into the top or to hand sew now. Hmmm.......

Friday, February 17, 2017

Raptor Ramble

Today my husband and I hiked up to Raptor Ridge from the north Chuckanut trail head parking lot.  We had planned on just going to Raptor Ridge and maybe an 8 mile day but on the way down, we decided to do a little adventuring so we got in a few more miles. Here's a photo of the trails in the area from one of the kiosks along the trail. I took it from the "you are here" arrow location. 
The red dot trail shows our route for the day, You can click on it to enlarge it.

I've been having some big toe & hip issues lately, and have been only able to run or walk about an hour without too much pain. At about two miles in my hip really started to bother me. We had pretty much figured that my hip pain is IT band related. I have a leg strap to use when it acts up and I had put it on, but it obviously needed to be adjusted. So I felt around the outside of my leg just a little above my knee and found exactly where it hurt and put the pressure point of the leg strap right on it. Between the strap and the toe covers, I made it through the hike with no pain the rest of the way. It's pretty amazing how that little strap placed in the right position takes all of the IT band pain away fairly quickly. Yahoo!
My miracle devices: the IT band strap for my right leg, my left big toe cushion and the right big toe side ball joint cushion -

Anyway back to our hike. We made our way up the Arroyo park trail, and through the Chuckanut falls trail. I really appreciate the new trail work done on Chuckanut falls section. We didn't hike to the falls this time.

On our way up to Raptor Ridge on the Hemlock and Raptor Ridge trails, I snapped a few photos of things that caught my eye,

Since it was so close to Valentines day, I thought it was great that there was a great big heart in the sky,

We ate our lunch at Raptor Ridge and then continued on down the trail towards the Lost lake trail. My husband has a little saw he carries in his pack in case he needs to use it. Today it got a LOT of use. Two areas on the Raptor Ridge trail needed some trail work done.

We then connected with the Lost lake trail. This is where the kiosk is that I took the photo of the map.
After walking a short distance on the trail (which is really an old gravel road), we decided to change our course and take the 1/2 mile trail to check out the Madrone Crest view.

After enjoying the Madrona trees along the trail and the view, we made our way back out to a junction just before heading back to the Lost Lake trail. Again a change of route, we decided to follow the Madrone Crest trail and connect with the Salal trail. The photo below shows the trail coming towards me (to the left of the sign post) that we hiked up from the Lost Lake trail to our Madrone Crest view trail. Just behind me is the trail we came from for the view rest break. Our destination from here was to go to our right and follow that section of the Madrone Crest trail.
Are you confused yet 😉.

More trail work to be done on the Madrone Crest trail.

After his hard work and my photo documenting, we hiked on down to the Salal trail, crossed the Hemlock trail and decided to join the Huckleberry trail. As we were heading down the Huckleberry trail, we came to the bench at the viewpoint and I spied a little tree still adorned with it's Christmas decorations! I thought I heard the song "Angels we have heard on high" wafting through the breeze or was it just my imagination......

We came to the Hemlock trail and retraced our steps from earlier in the day on the Chuckanut Falls trail, the Arroyo park trail and on to the north Chuckanut trail head parking lot.
Such a fine day to ramble around the Raptor ridge area, my leg survived and my toe is just a little bit sore.

Garmin stats:
total miles hiked - 11 miles
minimum altitude - 117 feet
maximum altitude - 1694 feet
total ascent - 2333 feet
total descent - 2037 feet

*don't you think that if a girl that loves purple finds a pair of beautiful purple hiking boots that they should be hers???
Yep, me too!
**disclaimer - my leg and toe were bothering me BEFORE I got the new boots!!!!!!

Monday, February 13, 2017

Mon Oeuvre - en provence MQ progress 11

"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.)

Today is the "Last" Monday link up for the mystery quilt. If you want to look at the other quilts that have been created in our mystery group you can go here to view them -

This week I purchased the batting and backing fabric for my en Provence mystery quilt by Bonnie Hunter (Quiltville).
I'm using Warm & Natural cotton for my batting, and Keepsake Calico Sundrenched Butterfly Flowers cotton for my backing fabric.

Here's a close up photo of the backing fabric so you can see the design details a bit better. I think the color with the white design will go nicely with my quilt top colors. I felt like I needed to tie in the white somehow since my quilt top has sooo much white in it. The mystery quilt is named "en Provence" and was themed after the colors in a Lavender field in France, I thought the butterflies and flowers fit into the theme nicely. 
I can just imagine the butterflies on my fabric taking flight and fluttering around my quilt top, sitting here and there and enjoying my en Provence lavender field 😉.

I found some photos Online of some Lavender fields in France, that show some examples of the color theme for our quilts.

This has been a most wonderful mysterious adventure!

Saturday, February 11, 2017

Picture of the week ~ Sunrise

"Morning has broken like the first morning
Blackbird has spoken like the first bird
Praise for the singing
Praise for the morning
Praise for them springing fresh from the world".
Morning has broken - Cat Stevens

Thursday, February 9, 2017

Whatcom county ice and snow fest

Today we opted to stay home, not necessarily because of the weather but because I'm having an issue with my right hip. Last week my husband and I hiked the South Fork trail and there were several downed trees that we needed to climb under and over. I must have bent down awkwardly because my hip started bothering me and was pretty uncomfortable by the time we got to our car.
I've been indoor cycling which doesn't seem to bother it, since our weather has been icy/snowy and cold. Yesterday I decided to take a couple mile walk in the snow and savor it while it was beautiful before it all melted away. It was predicted to get really rainy and warmer the next day. Sure enough my hip is still not happy.
While I was in the protected area of our neighborhood, I took a slomo video of the large flakes floating down.

The reason I don't do much exercise outdoors when it gets snowy and cold here is because it's usually accompanied by the Northeast winds. Our neighborhood is tucked away in a nice protected area. We do get some nice gusts but nothing like the open fields. We can go 1/2 mile in our protected zone but as soon as we turn the corner BAM we are right in the full force of the winds. Big winds and wind chill. This video was taken just a 1/2 mile down the road

Here's a still photo of the corner.

As I said before there is a marked difference from the county weather and the weather in Bellingham. Just drive the Hannegan road from Bellingham sometime when the weather is wintry, you'll see that within a 1/4 of a mile of the Smith road intersection it becomes snow and ice when Bellingham has little or none to speak of.
The farther north you go the more intense the winds effects. Here's a photo I found online of a snowdrift around the Lynden high school building. You can see more photos and read about the north county weather phenomenon in this article by KOMO news..

I did manage to get a measure where the snow laid fairly flat on a table outside. Our temperatures have been mostly in the mid 20's for our daytime high for about a week.

We spent most of our time this last week keeping the birds and hummingbirds full.

Tuesday we had a break in the weather and the sun came out, making the ice sparkle. 

Yesterday brought another day of wind & snow....

Our yard sculpture iris got a new layer of snow,

as did my measuring table.

It has warmed up today, and not too much rain as yet but a heat wave of 37 degrees.
Hopefully I'll get my hip figured out and can get on with my outdoor fun.

The best meme I saw on the internet about our weather was this one. We live near the Canadian border and the Abbotsford, British Columbia weather forecasts are more accurate for us, so this was funny to me.

Monday, February 6, 2017

Mon Oeuvre - en provence MQ progress 10 (flimsy complete)

"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's progress on my en Provence mystery quilt by Bonnie Hunter (Quiltville).
I've seen many quilts posted online laying in the snow and thought what a beautiful thing. I was so happy when I got my flimsy (a quilt top that isn't quilted yet) done and we got snow! 
Pardon the footprints around it, but our Northeast winds were just beginning to blow harder and I just got the picture taken between gusts. Whew! We got some BIG winds later in the day, so my timing was perfect.
My Flimsy ~

and on our bed.

It's now pressed and ready to be made into a quilt sandwich.
*Quilters call the process of  assembling the three layers -- quilt top, batting and backing -- as making a "quilt sandwich".

Thursday, February 2, 2017

South Fork trail frost & ice

My husband and I started today's hike with a chill in the air, it was in the mid 30's when we began our hike. The northeast wind was blowing when we left our house, but thankfully we chose a nice out of the wind area for today's hike. The trail was frosty and cold, sooo glad I wore layers.

Skookum creek

The South Fork trail also known in some guide books as the 1000 puddles is one of my favorite hikes. it can be as short or long as you want it to be. We've heard that it continues all the to Hamilton. The longer route would include a crossing of Cavanaugh creek, which has several nice big rocks to aid in the crossing (even better with trekking poles for balance).  Today we chose to just go as far as the creek and then head out to the riverbank for lunch, just over 2 1/2 miles one way. A lot of work has been done on this trail and I've not ever seen the 1000 puddles. Today however we walked on frozen ground and saw lots of hoarfrost and ice.

We found a nice clearing and stopped for a "solar" rays warming snack break.

The closer we got to the creek the thicker the moss on the trees and logs.

Below is a macro shot of a strand of moss.....
from this log.

Cavanaugh creek

A mossy bough veil obscuring the creek view.

We then walked back to a fork in the trail and headed to the riverbank for lunch.
Moss covered with ice crystals.

Bits of snow & large frost crystals here and there.

The white on the bank in the photo below is frost.
South Fork of the Nooksack river, looking to the west.

South Fork of the Nooksack river, looking to the east.

Ice formations on the opposite bank from where we were eating lunch.

 Walking back I took some more photos of the magnificent hoarfrost and ice along the trial.

We took a few of the side trails down to the river as we made our way back just for fun.
Another fine day on the South Fork trail.
Garmin stats -
total miles hiked - 6.38

*note, if you go to this trail a large sign that I used to enjoy reading is no longer near the gate. I'm glad I took a picture of it long ago.