Wednesday, May 31, 2017

A Circus and When Guinea Pigs Fly Giveaway

Believe it or not, there was more to Saturday's Pig-a-Palooza than nail clipping.  Really!  Some guinea pigs were lucky enough join the circus.  Salem Pet Photo was there snapping pictures of guinea pigs who had aspirations to be clowns or lion tamers.  Be sure to check out the photos over at The Wheekly.  So much fun!

Tuesday, May 30, 2017

Stashes, Holes and Headers

Ryco had a sale this weekend on precuts.  I went to pick up a few reds and darks.  Technically I succeeded; I got a few of each... plus a lot of colors I didn't need.  But I just kept picking them up and couldn't put them down.  Especially in the bargain bin area.  Those peacock feathers were so pretty!  I loved the watercolor greens.  The gold had bits of shiny specs.  So they all came home with me.

Monday was a cool, cloudy, rainy day - perfect for sewing.  I rolled up my sleeves and attacked the last of the sound drapes.  I recognized my handiwork on two of the drapes.  Some fixes had held better than others, so I adjusted how to patch holes/rips this time around.

I went through a lot of denim iron-on patches for the big holes and menders tape for little holes that hadn't quite frayed.  One tear was 30 inches long!  I patched over a dozen holes on another drape.  And I finally found a use for the Fray Block that has been sitting in my sewing box for decades.

Sunday, May 28, 2017

Pig-a-Palooza 2017

I spent Saturday at Nevins Farm's Pig-a-Palooza in Methuen, MA.  I went to the first Pig-a-Palooza two years ago.  (I missed last year's since it conflicted with candy making.)   Wow - what a difference two years makes.  The first Pig-a-Palooza was well attended, but this one was packed.

Raffle table (there was some great stuff!)
Happy sows and happy people.  It was a packed room.

Thursday, May 25, 2017

I Like Thursday: Nothing to See Here

So much happened this weekend and I liked so much about it.  But I forgot the camera.


So you'll have to imagine a lot of my likes.

I liked the Escape from Boston battle reenactment at the Spencer-Peirce-Little Farm in Newbury, MA.  My mom and I stopped by on Saturday afternoon, just in time to see the redcoats get routed (although we missed my poor Uncle Redcoat get shot down like the dog he was).  Amazing how loud those muskets were!  And a cannon.  And the smoke!  And how damned close you need to be to see the whites of their eyes!  I got history lessons from some of the bystanders.  Very cool.  And we got caught up with my aunt and uncle.  Nice.

I liked the Chocolate Tour in Newburyport.  Chocolate!  We gave them our tickets, got a bag and a map, then wandered around for two hours to at least twenty different stores.  Happy people!  Happy shopkeepers!  Beautiful weather!  And did I mention chocolate?  Some was run-of-the-mill.  But Lindt chocolates are always good.  Plus there were some wonderful handmade chocolates, brownies, lava cake (to bring home and microwave), even gelato.  Oh, yeah, I liked this a lot.

I like that proceeds went to charities like Nevins Farm (MSPCA) and Habitat for Humanity.

Ooh.  I do have something to show - I liked the paper quilling art I found in one shop.  She had some beautiful framed pieces - I bought a little card.

Monday, May 22, 2017


But why can't we go in the living room?
Did not feel well last week, so nothing much was done.  No sewing.  No writing.  Very little of anything was accomplished around the house. 

But stinky guinea pigs ensured there was cage cleaning on Friday.

I was not up to cleaning the cage as well as chasing pigs all over the living room, so I put up the grids to keep them in the kitchen.  I was quickly told this was unacceptable.  First I was chattered at.  Later, when Wedgwood determined they couldn't sneak around the edges, Boadicea attacked the grids.  I haven't had a pig so determined to breach grids since Pinniped.

Cage cleaning was easier without chasing them.  Still, their antics were so distractingly funny I kept stopping to watch and photograph them.

Sunday, May 14, 2017

Wedgwood's Gotcha Day

Photo by Salem Pet Photo
It was one year ago today that stormy little(?) Wedgwood blew into our lives.  On the surface she was just what I was looking for:  a mature sow to keep Boadicea from getting bored.  The added bonus -  she was my favorite color of agouti grey and white.  She's ridiculously cute with her long pointed nose.

Wedgwood was not quite what we expected, as we've discovered over the last year.  She doesn't wheek, she whines.  She's relaxed when being held but OMG, don't pick her up!  She wants all of the food and none of the affection.  She's one of the meaner butt-headed pigs I've had in dealing with other pigs.  Yet she's the absolutely the gentlest pig I've had when handled by humans.  She wants to be near Boadicea all the time and doesn't like to be separated for long (even when she's picking on Boadi).  I suspect a lot of her quirks is from living years in two different households without guinea pig company.

Thursday, May 11, 2017

I Like Thursday: Fun and Games

I like my new kitchen scale.  My previous scale got dunked - I wasn't thinking.  Water is never a good thing with electronics.  The old scale eventually turned on, after I jab the button a dozen times.  I told Rob how bummed I was, and to please keep his eye out for a new one.  This arrived on our doorstep two days later (the guinea pig was an add-on).  Love that.  I may have to wish for things more often....

Monday, May 8, 2017

Doomed Again

Three years ago I took on a project to split three large acoustical curtains in half.  They are (fondly?) referred to as the Drapes of Doom.  They were heavy and massive.  Unfortunately, my Singer Graduate never recovered from the experience.  Sadness.

But I did... and somehow agreed to work on another eleven drapes.  How did I manage that??  When we hauled them into the house, Rob swears there were thirteen of them.

Thursday, May 4, 2017

I Like Thursday: Spring and Scraps

Spring has sprung.  Huzzah.  The green and flowers are making me happy.  A little warmth, lots of new growth.  I'll even deal with the pollen.

I like the little purple flowers that are growing up between the stones in my front yard.  I've never noticed them in prior years.  They're really pretty.

Tuesday, May 2, 2017


Songbirds was my insane inspired project.  I love this feather pattern.  When I first bookmarked it, it was a year before I had a chance to make it (Parrot Plumes).  I was excited to do it again.  This one came about in a similar manner:  a gift for someone who made me think of birds.  This time I had the added advantage of printing out the correct sized pattern and knowing the piecing/quilting pitfalls (I avoided most of them).

The recipient is into photography, the outdoors and has several bird feeders in the yard.  No parrots this time around - I was thinking North American songbirds.  A search of the internet produced two feathers I liked: blue jay and cardinal.  I had these colors on hand plus I thought blue jay feathers were interesting.

Monday, May 1, 2017

Some Sewing Insanity

Flange binding, hexies and knot bags
Inspiration sometimes hits like a tidal wave.  I get swept away - physically trying to keep up with what my mind is designing.  It happened this weekend.  It started innocently enough - the plan was to make a couple more knot bags and perhaps some more strip blocks.  Then another project butted in. 

I had an idea for a wall  hanging on Friday afternoon that simmered overnight.  I woke up the next morning with a firm idea of what I wanted to do.  By 11am I was running between the cutting mat, the sewing machine and the iron.  I pieced together wall hanging blocks until I started going cross-eyed, then switched gears and assembled knot bags for a while.

I briefly came up for air about 3:30 (for a nice dinner out - it forced me to focus on something else), then dove in again for another couple of hours.  I finished the blocks, layered the wall hanging, top-stitched the bags.  Pinning backing/binding to the hexies were icing on the cake.