Friday, August 29, 2014

Reusable Grocery Bags

It was a cooler day yesterday with some rain. We turned off the air conditioning until late afternoon. It was wonderful to be able to sit outside and enjoy the coolness of the day.

We got started early canning peaches and by 10:30 a.m. the last canner load was boiling. We did 21 jars of peaches in 2.5 hours. We both love the basement kitchen as it allows us to work smoothly together in a small space.

After a small break, I swept and mopped most of the basement floors. The house is cleaned up for this week. I plan on doing some each day starting on Monday so the house will remain clean on a continuous basis. A goal has been met and I am happy.

I am starting to do a basic clean up of the sewing room with a group of other women. Mine is messy and dusty. It needs my attention now though it will get the big scrub in January. At this point, I am not feeling productive due to the mess.

I started out looking at the different areas of my sewing room. The first is where my sewing machine and one set of drawers on wheels is.



You can’t see it all, but things have been dumped around it causing me to hunt for items. My first race shadow box is now in the room across the hall to be hung in there. I have moved the hair products which will be donated to a young rodeo queen. Items got cleaned up, surfaces dusted, and the floor swept. The drawer got moved and the floor swept and the top is tidier.


Much better for me from this side.



The sewing machine on the floor will be given to a child who wants to learn how to sew through 4-H. There are two containers holding embroidery thread and I need to order 2 more of them for the rest of my thread. That thread is in small baskets on the table where the serger resides.

After that, I cut out three reusable grocery bags. I used up 3.6 meters of fabric. The first fabric I used has honey bees on it. I bought the fabric to make cushions for a bench but never got them made and have moved on from that since then.

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One of the linings is black, the other a dark green.

The second piece of fabric is a piece I love and bought at 50% off.


It was to be a reusable grocery bag so I hit the mark with this one.

Today, I will be cleaning up this part of the sewing room but will be only doing it in 15-20 minute spurts.


This is the dump spot when I was cleaning the basement. I do hope to get most of it cleaned up, dusted, and the floor swept. In between, I will sew a reusable grocery bag, enjoy the cooler weather, prepare to can tomatoes.

Until tomorrow…………………………………

Thursday, August 28, 2014

A Bag Completed

It was hot yesterday; the sun was burning hot. We were under a severe thunderstorm watch for quite a while yesterday. We didn’t get the storm though it rained early this morning. We did get to 34C or 93F.

I finished cleaning the upstairs yesterday. I worked at it off and on all day and am pleased at how it looks. The most amount of time was spent cleaning up the guest room; bed made, air bed put away, dusting, sweeping, and mopping. The rest of the house was easy as I only had to dust, put away a few things, and mop the floors.

I allowed myself to sew during the day. It was timed sewing and I followed the schedule I set. The bag was completed.


Inside is pockets. I used a 10” deep piece of fabric for it. After turning under 1/4” hem at the top, I laid it on top of the lining. I measured 3” up from the bottom edge and sewed it down. That way nothing can fall into the bottom of the bag. Then I did vertical seams so there are pockets. The front pocket is quite long and is closed with velcro.


The bag was finished in my usual way and I am pleased with the results. I have paired the pillow case with it.


I have knit a dishcloth for a present. It is a new pattern for me and I do like it. It is the Welcome Home Kitchen Set that is free on Raverly. The author is Mindy Vasil.


This pattern is the basket weave and I have started on the Inset Garter Stitch cloth. There is a third cloth (seed stitch) and two hand towels in the set. I will work through them all for the fun of it.

Today I have the upstairs windows to clean, peaches to can, and the basement floors to start sweeping and damp mopping. I am also going to cut out the next pieces of fabric to make reusable grocery bags.

Until tomorrow……………………………….

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Cueing up the Fabric

It has been warmer than normal the past few days and we have enjoyed it. Yesterday the temperature got to 32.3C or 90F and this is suppose to be the last warm day for the next day. We keep saying fall is on its way and the weather is always cooler. True, but I have seen it hit 100F the middle of September and the kids swimming every day after school. I have seen it where you can eat Thanksgiving dinner outside in early October and that we wore short sleeved shirts and shorts in mid December. The region we live in gives us some warm weather late into the year. On the other hand, I have seen it snow up to 10 inches at Halloween and be –20C at Christmas which is cold for here.

Yesterday I got the ensuite cleaned from top to bottom and the master bedroom dusted and floors mopped. I also did 4 loads of laundry. I do love having everything in its own place. Cleaning up is so easy.

The afternoon was spent sewing and thinking. The pillow case was made and I love how it turned out.


As I am using up what is on hand, the piping is paler than I hoped for but it does match the pink hearts on the fabric.


The pattern I used is burrito style (roll it up so seams don’t show on the inside) and is for a regular sized pillow. I did buy a pattern that has three different sizes of pillow cases in it when I want to make larger sized cases.

I also cut out a baby bag and got the pieces interfaced. It is ready to sew in this picture.


I have since taken the pink broadcloth and opened it up. There is a 10” piece of the print left and I will layer it on top of the broadcloth to make inside pockets on this bag. I will put it into the craft container to sell later on.

Today my goal is to clean up the guest room, dust, mop floors and try to get the hallway done. If there is enough time, I will give the kitchen an extra wipe and do the floors in there. Sewing will be the bag and I will start on the next piece of fabric from the container. The honeybee fabric is calling me.


There is 1.5 meters of it. There is another fabric also calling me as I can use black and dark green for the linings of these bags. I will cut them out together with the possibility of getting 3 bags total.


As the fabric cues up, I will X them to keep me on track.

Until tomorrow………………………

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Hoarding Fabric = Anxiety and Stress

Yesterday was considerably cooler than usual and we spent it being busy but feeling tired. The Spousal Unit did a bunch of trimming of bushes and plants in the garden and yard. I cleaned the main bathroom and washed the towels. It gave me time to think about a lot of things.

The considerable amount of time I spent cleaning up the house and purging paid off. I am working my way through cleaning up after company and I noticed that less is better. The bathroom was a breeze to clean and having a shelf in the guest room closet for the towels is perfect. It is a great feeling to have.

As I cleaned the house this summer, I thought about my sewing stash and how I am trying to bust it. It needs to be reduced without me feeling guilty about what I have bought in the past. Yes, I bought fabric thinking that I would need a good stash after I retired. I was wrong about that. I do feel guilty about a lot of the purchases I made though they seemed right at the time. I am not going to quilt until the cows come home. I don’t have the support system here like I did in the north.


I just read this article about three ways to find willpower when you shop. In some ways I have been doing it unconsciously this year. I called it a fabric diet and could only buy what was needed to complete a project. I wrote a list when I shopped and couldn’t buy what wasn’t on it. It worked for quite awhile. I didn’t buy a lot at the fabric sales, mostly notions.

Then my second self stepped in and I bought fabric. Some has been sewn as I did a challenge of making little girls’ dresses using only measurements and not a pattern. The amount of fabric I bought ended up becoming 2 dresses, 2 boleros, and a western shirt for 2 little girls. I tossed the scraps knowing I had done a good job of using up that fabric.


Other pieces of the fabric are still sitting waiting their turn so I have had to tell the other self I can’t shop for fabric for another length of time. I need to go back and bust the stash again. I am back to buying only what I need to finish up a project. This fabric diet is until the end of the year.

With that in mind, I hauled out a piece of cotton fabric and a piece of broadcloth. It will be sewn up I said. A quilt at first but then I decided to make a pillow case. It is cut out ready to sew.


The left over cotton and broadcloth will be used up into a Baby Loves Books bag. It isn’t going back into the stash.


The small tub the above fabric was in, holds more fabric.


I am going to use it up; pillow cases and grocery bags are on the agenda for these pieces of fabric. Quick and easy is the motto for that tub. Projects I can do in an afternoon.


As I pick up a piece, I will measure and then decide ~ pillow case or shopping bag.  It felt good to have made that decision and I am ready to tackle this lot of fabric.

You may ask yourself why am I doing this. I have been thinking about this for several months now. It has been a long process of thinking, tossing ideas around, being angry and frustrated, and finally at peace with the decision. The guilty feeling I had about the fabric was causing me to hoard it and not let it go into projects. It also stressed me to the point I couldn’t deal with it without having a lot of anxiety. It was affecting me daily in a sub conscious way. Add to the fact that I won’t be moving this fabric another time, I had to make a decision on using it up or giving it away. I will be doing both.

Next on the list is my garment stash. It isn’t as big as the quilting/craft stash but it needs to be tamed also. I will work through it also. Little plans are niggling at me. That is good. More on that later.

Until tomorrow………………………….

Monday, August 25, 2014

Departure Day

D-Day has arrived and we are sad to see our family leave for home. It has been an amazing 9 days filled with visiting, day trips, geocaching, and water fights. It will certainly be quiet around here as we slide back into our quiet routine.

Yesterday morning, the Dude and his parents went out to do 2 geocaches while we did a few things around the house and yard. We then headed out to buy corn and do our last geocache together.

In the afternoon, the Dude and his parents went out to visit friends and we sank in our chairs to rest. We had 2 hours of unwinding before dinner was started.

Our evening ended with ice cream at the DQ.

In all we had a great day and an amazing time with our son, daughter-in-law, and grandson.

Today I will start cleaning up the house and look in my sewing room. I do have a simple quilt to make and may start on that.

Until tomorrow…………………………….

Sunday, August 24, 2014

A Day In the Mountains

Yesterday was another warm day but it didn’t affect us as we were higher up in the mountains looking at views and geocaching. What was to be a short trip took a good 7 hours to complete.

We headed out to the first two caches and found them after some hunting. We ended up walking a distance up the road to the find the first one. The second one, the views were breath taking.



We drove upwards and south from there to a lake called McLean’s Lake. This is part of the land that the ranch we managed for 13 years roamed. Water from the lake was monitored by the ranch to water fields next to the ranch and a certain amount had to be let go by into the creek below the ranch.



A walk down the ramp takes you to the valve that regulates the amount of water that flows out of the lake.


We continued on our way around the lake heading north and had lunch just after we left the ranch’s grazing land. A bull and cows were nearby. It was quiet and restful eating on dirt piles.

From there we headed out to another road and headed south around the base of Cornwall mountain. Next stop was at the ore sheds at Hat Creek Coal Mine. We hunted and hunted in the wrong spot as we didn’t stop where there was a road to the left. We walked a good mile up from where we parked to find the road and headed out to find the cache. It was there that we found a trackable which will move with the Dude when they head home tomorrow.


We stopped at another geocache along the way meeting others out doing the same. The rock was covered with orange growth. No pictures as we had not cell service and I left the phone in the car.

The next geocache was off the road we were on and at a provincial site. A piece of flat land and an outhouse. No cell signal and jumpy GPS signals made this a hard find. But it was found by Son who kept going back to the spot.


There were several geocoins in it.


We drove down to the highway for our last cache but didn’t find it. We headed home for dinner and the Dude went swimming at the pool with his parents.

Today is the family’s last day here and it is suppose to be a quiet day. We know we are having a corn feast. What else transpires remains to be seen.

Until tomorrow…………………………

Saturday, August 23, 2014

A Day of Learning

Yesterday was warmer than expected and today will be quite warm also. We are now experiencing temperatures in the high 80F but it can still get into the 90F range. Mornings are cooler and I am getting the urge to run again.

Our day trip was wonderful. The series of land slides was around the lake and a couple were scary. As we couldn’t stop, I took some pictures on the go.



Our trip was two fold; to geocache and to explore. It was super fun doing both.

Our first stop, after lunch was at the museum to see the huge slabs of jade.


The base of this slab really caught my eye.


A variety of rocks including jade. We walked across the road to a jade shop and the Dude got to choose a rock from the kid’s bin. We left from there to go to where the salmon are migrating. It is a great run this year.



The dark in the water is the fish. Once they enter into the clear blue water, the Aboriginal people cannot net them. The brown water flowing is the Fraser River and this clear river is the Seton River.

Up on the rocks someone has painted this design.


And all around on the rocks are tents where the fish are cleaned and hung to dry.


We did geocache just beyond this area and as we found the cache, friends came along and shared the excitement of the find with us. We all signed the book.

We did drive down to the old bridge to do a second cache but the pictures didn’t turn out of the bridge. You would have thought it was a foggy day they were so bad. We also did one cache on the way home.

We had a quiet evening as we were all tired. Today we will do an afternoon trip. This morning is laundry as we seem to have mountains of it.

Until tomorrow……………………………..