October SALE

While I ponder the future of TheQuiltifyShop, I am having a sale.  We all love sales, don’t we?  There will be FREE shipping on all items to the USA and Canada for the month of October.  I also have placed this item specifically on sale:

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Some come shop for a deal!  Happy shopping!

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Chores, Pies and Random Thoughts

Autumn is my favorite time of year.  I love being outside when the air is cool and a breeze is singing through the leaves.  Autumn is also the time for yard work and painting.  Here is a sample of my activity:

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I’m not particularly fond of heights, but I also believe you can’t let your fears get in the way if you can help it.  This type of activity is my way of keeping healthy and, if I don’t step back, having a long healthy life.  I had one grandfather die of lung cancer young.  My other two, yes, I had two more, lived to be 89.  One retired at age 75, wrote a book, and was still acknowledged up to his death.   My other grandfather was still active, taking care of his houses, traveling, and on the roof painting his houses late into his 80’s.  (He was also still swimming in the bay, but that’s not my cup of tea as I hate wet bathing suits!)  So I’m there, scraping and painting in my sunglasses, and listening to The Time Traveler’s Wife.  You’ll note I’m holding onto the shutter hanger so I’ll keep from stepping back.

I’ve also been thinking…  When I retired from my main job, I started my small quilting business.  I guess I thought it was hard to jump from life being too structured, to not being structured at all.  I’ve mostly always had some type of small business on the side, whether it was a small antique business or writing historical novels.  However, I’m now thinking about whether I really need this small quiting business, especially with all the government requirements for making my Don’t Bore Your Baby quilts.  I love longarming, making tee shirt quilts and, particularly, my Don’t Bore Your Baby quilts, but there is so much to do in life, even the small tasks that we once did in a hurry as a nuisance seem more enjoyable and then there is my severe travel addiction.  Or is it my travel planning addiction?  Is there time for everything?

My mother used to make the best two crusted lemon pie ever!  Unfortunately, I never tried to make it when she was alive.  I do recall her telling me that the key was slicing the lemon as thin as possible.  Well, I have tried to make this pie through the years and have totally failed. The filling she made was real lemon and I could not duplicate the texture or taste.  This fall I decided to conquer her lemon pie.  I’m not the neatest cook: Cooking-1

I am happy to say, I settled down, took my time, took each word she wrote extremely seriously, and was able to duplicate the lemon  filling.  The crust actually was pretty good as well, but I can improve upon it, I think.  So I am happy to say, our holidays this year will again have Mom’s lemon pie!  I actually think she was in the kitchen with me, slowing me down, so I would follow the directions correctly, which is something I don’t always do in the kitchen.  Slowing down is easier the older I get…

And to digress, is it worth marketing something to a population who is not interested in paying a real value for something?  Fewer, but better quality, vs more, but poor quality.  Is more really better?  To me there is no question about the value of a well made quilt.  A quilt that will keep looking good through the many washes it needs to go through.  A quilt that is not the same as thousands of other quilts. And a quilt that will help your baby to not be bored and to provide something for her to look at as her vision develops is important.  Just the other day, I saw another baby in a white outfit, belly down on a white blanket.  What’s up with that?  Stop boring your baby!  It really bothers me that parents do not seem to consider the developmental stage of their child when they are babies.  I, also, find most people don’t think about from where their products originate.  There are many people who can’t worry about that due to their finances, and that is OK.  But, I know so many people who don’t think about it, who should.  Those ridiculously cheap items from large stores are made with cheap foreign labor and from shoddy materials.   Too many people try to get my quilts on the cheap.  I think a lot of people conclude that I am retired, I don’t need to work, so why am I charging for my labor? (And a lot of women don’t properly charge for their labor, but that’s another subject.)  Or do people have no clue what good quality costs?  I would rather give my quilts away to people I want to give them to than to sell them to someone who doesn’t want to pay a fair price.  So, I’m thinking of closing my Etsy shop and sticking to tee shirt quilts,  longarming, and DBYB quilts by word of mouth.  And I’d have time for all the other things I want to do!

And I see the poor refugees in Europe and I wish I could just pass my quilts out to those little children so that I felt like I was doing something for them.

I’ve also been taking photographs, so I will leave you with one.  I love old buildings, derelicts, storefronts, etc.

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OK, and can anyone tell me how to get one of these copyrights off of my photographs?  LOL.  Happy Autumn!

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Mt. Desert Island, Maine or Morning by Chocolate

Mt. Desert Island is an island close to the coast of Maine on which much of Acadia National Park sits.  This is the first time B. and I have taken a trip for the sole purpose of photography.  This trip included committing myself to getting up to see the sunrise. I told myself daily for the week before, “you will get up”.  Seeing the sunrise was never on my ‘need to do’ list.  For those who know me, it is an understatement to say I am not a morning person.  That’s not to say I haven’t seen the sunrise before, but it is while something else had called me out, as in an early morning flight to Europe or a Brimfield excursion.  Nonetheless, I sucked it up, ate some dark chocolate and waited for the sun to rise.  B. had fun, so this will not be the last time.  I’m thinking the next time I rise to photograph the sunrise I need to be in Venice, Italy…what do you think?  Anyway, here is a small sample of my photographs:

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This island is one of my top three favorite places in the USA.

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Here’s the sky before and after dawn.  Imagine me having a few bites of dark chocolate as the sun rises.  I couldn’t have coffee until breakfast, but, geesh, did that coffee (and breakfast) taste good!

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I’d like to say that these trucks belong to real men, doing real work.  (Not men who commute from the suburbs in their fancy, clean trucks and shuffle money to make their fortunes.  In case you miss my tone, I say this with derision.)

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The Grand Canyon of Acadia National Park.  Sunset over Johnson Pond, I think, on our last Acadia evening for the season.

I am very happy with the photographs that I took on this trip, because there is not a blurry one in the bunch…except when I, accidently, took a picture of the ground.  This is a huge improvement from my Sweden pictures, which were often blurry because I had used too slow a shutter speed.  Maybe now I can pay more attention to composition.

We had an interesting kerfuffle while waiting to take the sunrise pictures.  When we arrived at our sight, we set up our tripods and equipment with no one in sight.  Just when the sun was about to rise, a photographer (I’ll refer to him as Pman) came hurrying down the cliff and started hassling B. to move.  He had three students with him and apparently B. had picked Pman’s favorite spot to shoot the sunrise.  Pman wanted B. to move because he wanted B.’s spot.  He did not want any other place along the coast, just B.’s spot.  Keep in mind, besides him and his students, we were the only other two people in this area on the coast of Maine!  Apparently, cooperation to Pman means ‘get out of my way, I own the coast’.  It did disturb B. a bit because both he and I try to cooperate…but this guy was ranting and raving, and in the wrong.  His students were clearly embarrassed.  Fortunately, when it was clear he couldn’t bully B. into moving, Pman disappeared behind a huge boulder during the sunrise.  His students just set up next to me and refused to move near their teacher when he called them.  When the light was gone, he was ranting again as he headed back up the cliff to his car.  The last student off the rocks came over to me and confirmed we were absolutely in the right, we had been there first.  Even though we knew this, it was nice to hear from one of the parties involved.  Who would think a photographer would be so arrogant and aggressive?  Isn’t this about art?  Needless to say, B. was a bit off kilter during the shoot and was not totally happy with some of his photographs, because he was distracted by Pman’s behavior.  This is where it pays to not be a morning person.  I did listen to what was occurring, I offered Pman the place next to me in which he was trying to force B., but I didn’t get too emotionally involved because I was just starting to eat my chocolate so I was only partially there.  We’ve had some good chuckles about this encounter since.

So type A photographers out there, I say, “Chill! With a little luck there will be another sunrise tomorrow.  Or, get up earlier to calmly claim your spot…and eat chocolate!”

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Absence…

I’m sorry I have been neglectful in posting, but I have been on vacation doing this:

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Although this is B., I was doing the same.  This is Mt. Desert Island, one of my favorite places.  I’ll post some better pictures in the near future, but just wanted to explain my absence.  Happy days!

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Millie Monday

I did manage to get one quilt top quilted and bound this week.  Here’s busy Millie:

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My goodness, she is a particular charm when it isn’t humid.  Who would think the atmosphere could affect a machine so?  And yet, I shouldn’t be surprised as humidity sure affects me.  Here’s the completed quilt:

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I love the back of this quilt.  I had been meaning to get to Gather Here in Cambridge for a couple of years, but finally I did.  They had a lot of lovely backing fabrics.  It’s an easy subway ride away so it will by one of my ‘go to’ fabric stores from now on.

I’m playing with a 40mm lens on my Canon DSLR to determine how much I like it for a single travel lens, when not traveling by car.  No decision yet.

Happy quilting!

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Millie Monday

On this hot and humid day, Millie is perhaps overdressed.

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I will hopefully have these quilt tops quilted by the end of the week.  My September schedule is unlikely to allow time to add more DBYB quilts to my shop.  Here’s hoping I also clean this cluttered and thready (word?) studio before I change direction!  I am a messy sewer and here I did not clean up the mess between these two quilt tops.

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Wednesday’s Word

Or words this week, “Today, was a good day“.  I’m having a difficult time with these words.  I am lucky to feel almost every day is a good day so I could fill books with photographs.  Every year gets better.  But as I recently checked one item off of my bucket list, I’ll say that any day you meet your ancestors and learn something about why you are the way you are, is a good day.

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Photograph taken in Umeä, the land of the Norlins and Lindströms.

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And Ingatorp, the land of the Möllers and Samuelsons.  Both beautiful and full of beautiful people.  Happy traveling!

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Millie Monday

Millie is resting today, but there is a new sea creatures quilt in TheQuiltifyShop.  Sea-9

I’m in the process of making a quilt for a fundraising silent auction for the Rehoboth Antiquarian Society.  As it turns out, my many times great grandfather, Sylvanus Perry, and my many times great grandmother, Rebecca Bliss, were born in Rehoboth in the first half of the 18th century.

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Although, it makes me think of the Boston Bruins on bicycles,  so we’ll see.

And as I am not feeling chatty and as I need to go mow the lawn, ugh, I’ll finish this post now.  Have a happy day!

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Wednesday’s Word

This week’s Daily Press’ word is Creepy.

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Or do I just have a strange mind?

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Millie Monday

Millie is still wearing last week’s outfit.  I could have changed the photograph, but I’d thought I’d be honest about my week.  With a little concentration, this quilt top could be a quilt by next Monday.

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Where did the week go?  I finally downloaded Lightroom.  And because my Sweden photographs were less than stellar, although wonderful anyway because of all the memories they hold, I thought I’d work on editing them.  I must say Lightroom is fun.  Here’s a few I worked on:

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I really like this photograph, the way the man comes out of the shadows in the old town with the cruise ship in the background.  I think it tells a story or stories.  What do you think?

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Here’s a lovely, simple, typical Swedish door.  Need I say more?

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It was high school graduation time when I was in Sweden.  I imagine there is a different name for it, but I didn’t learn it.  After the ceremony, the students pile into huge trucks and tour the town, while many parents stand on the sidelines and have posters of their graduating child when they were little, like this one for Maia.  You can get a glimpse of a decorated HUGE truck in the background.  It was a festive atmosphere as the students rode round and round the town with music blaring, while they danced and celebrated in the trucks.  This picture was from Eksjö.

And as you see, I’ve never used a watermark before, and apparently Lightroom automatically set one up with my name.  Hmmm, will need to delete one, but I’m not sure which one.  I was thinking quiltify would be less about me.  Should you have your name on the photograph?  Anyway, have a great week.  Happy distractions!

PS.  I still have a problem with too much blue in the white balance.  I didn’t see that until the post was uploaded.

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