Thursday, September 29, 2016

A Trip Back in Time

We Dreamers hopped on a time travel machine.
We took a trip back in time on a visit to New York.

If I made a timeline, our time-travel adventures might look something like this:


Back to the scene of the crime wedding.
The groom waits for the ceremony to begin.

Now.... still waiting (Will you hurry up and take the picture?)

The wedding takes place.

I am sure I could hear the echoes of our vows as we peeked 
into the church. It hasn't changed much!

After the ceremony...

 The chairs have changed, the carpet has been ripped out.
No one was around to take our picture, 

So, we muddled through on our own. 

I attended Bennett College in Millbrook, NY. The main building, Halcyon Hall, was formerly a luxury hotel constructed in 1893. The story I heard was that the proprietors would extend invitations to wealthy families in New York City to come enjoy a restful week in the country. Evidently the invitation hinted that the stay was free, but in fact, families received a hefty bill upon leaving!

The building was purchased in 1907, and may have looked something like this.

In my day, it looked like this. (I didn't have any pictures of the building,
but found this on the Internet, and must give credit to

The school ran into problems in the mid 70's as enrollment declined. 
The original trust did not allow the school to admit men,
nor could they turn the school into a four-year college.
The property was ensnared in the trust decrees and was left empty
when the school closed in 1978. 

What a shame.
It was difficult to go visit, but I felt compelled to see it again.

My dorm, first year.
My room was on the top floor, 4th window from the left. 


High school graduation.

Here I am with a few of my classmates (just a few years later!)
In the picture above, I am on the far right in the front row.
The handsome fellow in the picture below is top row, third from right.
My friend is on the bottom row, on the left.


We had the opportunity to visit with my beau from 10th grade!
We remarked that we had no pictures of us together from back in the day.


We attended a reunion for Mr. Dreamy and his classmates.
They were the first class to spend all four years at this "new" high school.

Some of the attendees took a tour of the school.
Much of it remains the same and "students" pointed out their lockers,
where they sat in in the music room, and where they used to
go outside to smoke during lunch.


Mr. Dreamy has been exploring his genealogy for years. 
Some of his ancestors attended this one-room school...

... and met in this Quaker Meeting house in Greenfield, NY.


Hugo Freer, an ancestor of Mr. Dreamy's, built this house in New Paltz, NY.

It still stands, much as it did back in his time.

We had a great time visiting, and talking, and remembering, and talking....
I'm ready for some quiet time now.
I'm all talked out! It's good to be back in 2016, in the here and now!

Tuesday, September 27, 2016

It Started With a....

... bit of inspiration from embroidery software I purchased last year. I saw the designs and thought that they might be interesting to use.... some day!

Then.... I found the perfect fabric as a background
for the embroidered designs.

It looks kinda like rock.
It's bright.
The designs would "pop" on this.

Then.... I found another fabric.
It reminds me of the red rocks of Sedona,
and Bryce Canyon,
and Santa Fe....

Several of the designs I liked the most required machine embroidery
and applique.
This fabric would be awesome in an appliqué!
(Don't you think?!)

Then I went to a quilt guild sew day and I was introduced to
"Stack and Whack" quilts.
The finished results look somewhat like a kaleidoscope.
I found fabric in great colors for a "western" quilt,
and made some blocks using this technique.

Then I put it all together. 
I found some thread with the perfect colors for quilting,
and I dreamed up some Indian-like designs to quilt,
and I went to work!

Nope, they aren't perfect!
 But, considering that I've only been using the
longarm machine for a few months, 
I'm not dissatisfied!


Ta daaaaaa....

I completed the quilt, which I named "Navajo Nation",
(even though some of the designs are Hopi)
and I sent the quilt to my sister.

I sure did have fun on the whacky road to dreaming, designing and completing the quilt!

Thursday, September 8, 2016

Walking on the Edge

Sewing is wonderful, but it isn't exactly aerobic. One day I did log 3.3 miles walking from the embroidery machine to the quilting machine and back.... and forth.... and back.... and forth. But, generally, I don't get enough exercise while sewing.


I decided I needed to start my day with a walk. I live "on the edge". That is, I live right next to suburbia, but I am fortunate to be "almost country"! My home is in the upper right corner of this picture, and you can see where suburbia begins to encroach on us in the lower left corner. 

Suburbia has a beautiful network of paved trails. But there isn't great access from my home. In the past I have driven down to a park in the populated area, where I could access the trail, but it is a bit of a pain. Luckily for me, the farms/ranches/ranchettes just south of me left easements between their pastures, and I can walk along those. The green dotted lines show my options for walking along the easements or along the roads. 

Each "leg" is a bit more than a quarter of a mile in length, and I can change my route following any of the paths. The easements are partially mowed. The terrain is up and down hills (there is a 100 foot change in elevation!) Some of the pathways have serious erosion that makes walking a bit of a challenge. But, it is beautiful....

Why don't I take you along with me?!

I have always loved these red barns....

And, the view of the mountains to the west can be spectacular!

Once I'm off the road I have not encountered another two legged creature. I did see another dog taking his human for a walk in the distance, and when I'm on the road I am occasionally overtaken by a runner or I meet someone on a bike. 

Even though I've not seen another human, I am not alone! 

Ducks frequent a pond in the lower right quadrant.

 A buck checks me out as I trudge up one of the hills.

Yearling cows are curious as I walk by. 
(See suburbia in the background?)

 I find this ant colony to be fascinating. 
Nothing grows in a 6' diameter circle around the ant nest.

Two does watch my approach.
Once a doe held her ground and stomped her little hoof at me!
When I stomped back, she turned tail.

 This property owner, on the edge of civilization,
has horses... and a deer.
(Yes, we have a lot of deer.)

The young buck has decided he'd like to leave. I'm too close.

On this walk I surprised the yearlings when they were close to the fence.

This pasture has some sheep (almost as wide as they are tall) and 
a llama (on the right) who acts as a guard animal.

These fine fellows are carrying beautiful racks, still in velvet.
Soon they will scrape that skin off and become more aggressive.

Glad you could come along. It's time to head out for another walk. I wonder what I will see today?