Friday, December 24, 2010

Christmas Eve

Christmas Eve is nearly over here at the Scott House. It's been a day of fun and laughter, of remembering and gratefulness.

This morning I got a phone call, "Gamma...when are you going to pick me up?" "On my way Sydney!" Picked up this delightful 5 year old and off we went to the grocery store. I've been there every day this week; you would have thought I had enough. But still needed a few things. As we passed the olives I asked Sydney if she thought we needed some for Christmas Eve dinner. "Nope." she said. I then asked if she thought we needed them to put on our fingers and she quickly said we definitely needed them.

We picked up Mama's gift and came back home. Liz called to add another family to our Christmas Eve Crab Feast...of course there is always room for the Caldwell family at our table! Larissa & Lewis and their 3 munchkins are considered part of our family. Mr. Scottie Dog cooked and picked crab for everyone, I made salad and Liz made a shrimp & Parmesan pasta. Add some sourdough bread, crab Louie sauce and we have a feast!

Sydney helped me decorate, set the table and make some cookies for dessert. She and Mr. Scottie Dog got his vintage Lionel trains running around the Christmas Tree. These vintage trains are from the very early 1920's and were given to his dad for Christmas. There are crates and crates of track, buildings & cars. The only place I've ever seen them before is at the California State Railroad Museum. He's got quite a collection.

After dinner Sydney got to open a gift under the tree...there were only 3. One for our cats and one for her cats (we bought kitty treats at the store today) and one I had placed there. "Merry Christmas Curious George." So we made Sydney a bed beside the tree, read the book, said her prayers and she went to sleep with the twinkling tree lights and visions of Christmas Morning dancing in her head.

Liz and Steve headed home...they'll be back at the crack of o'dawn thirty and we'll open our gifts and have brunch. I hope that all of you have a wonderful Christmas. The most important thought I can leave you with is that the Baby Jesus grew up to give his life that you might come to know God the Father. Bless you all.

Monday, December 20, 2010

Christmas Crab

In our neck of the, Coastal Redwood Forest, that is.... Dungeness Crab is a December delicacy. The fishing fleet braves winter seas, rain and wind to bring us Dungeness Crab. You'll find them in every grocery store, the local fish markets and every restaurant will be serving their December Crab specials. Crab manicotti, crab cakes, crab salad, crab melt sandwiches and more.
I came home from work on Saturday weary and hungry. Mr. Scottie Dog had been out to Woodley Island Marina (in the bay just a stone's throw from downtown Eureka) and purchased Mr. Crab (pictured below) from a crab fisherman.

Mr. Dog brought home this fine creature....notice he's making a sideways run for it off the tray. I guess he knew there was a big pot of hot water heating on the patio. Bill likes his crab fresh. That means buying it off the boat, dripping wet and then rushing home and putting him into the boiling pot within an hour or so. Dungeness crab is quite sweet and they are meaty too. This big guy yielded enough crab meat to feed the two of us....quite full!
Look at him...he's wearing his beautiful deep orange "suntan" all ready to be cracked, cleaned and eaten. Bill put his share on a salad and I just seasoned mine with a tiny bit of seasoned salt and a generous grind of the pepper mill. Yum!
Liz and I went to a bridal shower tonight for our friend Jammie and Mr. Scottie Dog invited Sydney to dinner. She brought prawns and another crab. When we got home she exclaimed, "I like crab better than shrimp and even better than mac 'n cheese!" High praise indeed from a 5 year old.
It's been stormy and rainy around here and the weather report is for more of the same. If weather permits we'll have Crab on Christmas Eve.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Catching Up

It seems I need to catch up a bit on my blog....
At Quilt Market Moda had a fabulous party for everyone. Dinner, dancing, good conversation at Minute Maid Park...home of the Astro's. As it started we posed with our good friend Marie who owns Runs With Scissors Quilt Shop in Citrus Heights, CA.
Here's a close-up of us...I LOVE working with my daughter, Liz!
Back again to MN I flew after Quilt Market for another 2 1/2 week visit. We celebrated Beka's birthday at BD's Mongolian Barbecue. They made her a birthday hat!

Here's Jakob...what a handsome 4 1/2 year old!
Of course we took a trip to McDonald's while I was there. Mercedes is a toofer kind of girl!
Miss Shiloh is always checking out her surroundings.
It was a magical time while I was there....first snow! Now I know that MN has had more than it's share of snow so far this year but I so enjoyed those first 9 inches! Snowmen, sledding, snow angels and more. A beautiful winter wonderland for me.
We also paid a trip to Famous Dave's Barbecue after church one Sunday...Sadies wanted to pose by the bear.The Sunday after Thanksgiving The historical Eureka Inn invited the community to the first Christmas Tree since 2004. Hundreds and hundreds of people came and placed an ornament on it's branches.See the Scottie Dog we brought!Here's a picture of Mr. Scottie Dog and Sydney. We stood in the crush of happy celebrants for awhile and then made our way home.
More tomorrow

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Long Time, No See...or Quilt Market Pt. 2

Yesterday and today I received several emails from friends in the blogging world saying basically the same thing: "Is everything OK? Long time, no see."

Yes, Tanya, Sara, Nan and Natalie...everything is fine. I've just been busy. I know I blogged last about Quilt Market and said there was more to it is. I spent two weeks with the Grands in MN and the last several days back at home. I'll tell those tales later.


While at Houston's International Quilt Market I rounded an aisle and stood in front of Martingale Publishers' booth. They are That Patchwork Place, one of the larger publishers of Quilting Books. In front of me was a cute gal working on "wonky letters" at a sewing machine. I glanced over and saw a copy (advanced copy...the book is NOT out yet) of Word Play Quilts: Easy Techniques from the UnRuley Quilter. Hey...we were InterNet friends...I timidly asked, "Are you Tonya? Wonky letters Tonya?" It turned out, of course, she was and we excitedly chatted about Wonky Letters, InterNet friends we had in common...Carol E. and Tanya W. Then Tonya suggested we have a picture taken:

Frame and all! The quilt we are in front of was made by none other than our friend in Japan, Tanya W. So here's another shot:
I like that there are wonky English letters AND Japanese characters. I believe this quilt now belongs to Tanya's daughter who lives in the states. Quilting certainly makes the world smaller!

This quilt here is not printed fabric! It is all applique by an Australian designer. Her work is impeccable.
This was a "tuffet" in one booth. Note the Yo Yo flowers....3-D flowers were everywhere at Quilt Market. I noted quite a trend in prints, colors, garments, toys, etc, etc that took me back to the mid 1970's.
Of course Sweet Chic was Pretty in Pink..Pink Princess style never goes out of fashion!
The button vendor reminds me of a candy shop display. Yummy color.
Amy Butler's booth is always in good taste....Midwest color-filled and yet so restful.
Close up of some of her pillows & bags.
1950's influenced clothing....Mad Men, anyone? See the fabric flowers again? Sophistication at it's finest.
I loved this Four Poster Bed. Dolls, animals and "veggie" pillows abounded at Market.
If you keep your eyes open, you can even find a Gee's Bend Quilt display at the end of one aisle! Beauty in utilitarian jeans quilt. there's Part 2 of Quilt Market. I've got at least one, if not two, more batches of pictures I think you'd like to see.
Thanksgiving is coming....I'm trying to be more thankful.....and to name my blessings. Today's thought...I'm so very thankful for my family, my daughters, their husbands & children and for my dear sweet Mr. Scottie Dog. I'm very blessed!

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Quilt Market Post #1

Here's my report from Houston Quilt Market (Blogger is having issues right now so I can't change the order of the pictures or edit them...I'm hoping you don't mind). On Friday we spotted this VW Van....shades of Arcata!

Cute booth: Easy Peazy Patterns!At school house Jean Wells of The Stitchin' Post shared what she's been working on....she totally works in solids now. We're buying a bunch of solids!We enjoyed our time with Georgeann Bender & Rich Kizer...the business gurus. We had another consultation with them thanks to Susan Fuquay and American Quilt Retailer.I'll try to post more pictures later. Perhaps Blogger will cooperate. Liz and I found some wonderful embroidery & wool kits, patterns, clothing patterns, new books...and for those who know how wonderful the Quilt Smart printed interfacings are now making bottle bags in addition to Smart Tote & Cell Phone Tote! Watch also for our Hunter's Star from them too.

For Buck-a-Block fans we bought the 2011 program...and.....TA DA! Guess what's new? We know that most things have gone up in price lately but now you get an even bigger value for your Buck: TWO BLOCKS! That's right, each month you'll be able to make two blocks from your kit. We are really excited about the 2011 program.

We've seen lots of our friends we only see at Market: Ricky Timms, Amy Butler, Jo Morton, Eleanor Burns, Jackie Clark, Pat Sloan, Alex Anderson and more....more pics and info tomorrow!

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Miniature Golf

We went miniature golfing today! Beka showed me that my camera could record videos. So she made this little one. Here's Jakob golfing:

I'm off to Houston Quilt Market tomorrow!

Sunday, October 24, 2010

My Grandkids are cuter than your Grandkids!

Tonight my son-in-law Jason posted some pictures on FaceBook of my Minnesota Grandchildren. They were great pictures. I made a comment on his pictures: My Grandkids are cuter than your grandkids! And it's true! At least to me and that's all that counts.

Here's some of the latest pictures and you can judge for yourself.

Sydney, age 5 1/2
Pumpkin Patch, October 2010

Jakob, age 4 1/2
School Picture, October 2010

Mercedes age 2 1/3
modeling at home, October 2010

(I included this one so you could see her face)

Mercedes, I LOVE this photo

Indian Summer fun day, October 2010 Shiloh 8 months

October 2010

Now...don't you agree that I have the cutest grandkids ever?

What's with the weather?

On Tuesday I fly back to MN. Their weather forecast is rain mixed with snow for Wednesday night. Thursday I fly to Houston for Quilt Market. The forecast there is for 85+ & humid. So I'm going to need another suitcase just for clothes for all seasons!

Friday, October 22, 2010

We've been to "school"

On Tuesday our fabulous Pfaff educator, Vanessa came to town and spent a day and a half training us and our staff on how to demonstrate and sell our sewing machines. She took our motley staff (note that I'm including Liz and I in this group) and taught us so much about our Pfaff sewing machines that I'm surprised our heads did not explode! She taught us a few things about selling too.

Number 1: SMILE.

Geri and Liz demonstrate this. (Be sure to notice that our Quilt Expression models all have this fabulous 9 1/2" neck for quilting!)

Judy and Katie listen attentively to Vanessa's instruction. We learned how to use lots of different feet for our machines, wonderful stitches and lots of to make cording for example.
Or sew hems on'd be so surprised how easily these machines could put new hems in your jeans...easy as pie.Oh and how to do a blind hem (need a skirt or pants hemmed?) in a nano second (or there-abouts...perhaps I exaggerate just a tad).
Here Geri is making a rolled hem.

Look at Liz smile...."Look Ma, I made a buttonhole!" These are the first buttonholes she's ever made. She's ready to tackle a garment now!

We all got a turn on the Grand Quilter. That stitch regulator certainly helps everyone to be a pro at free motion!
Thanks again, Vanessa for coming to Redwood Sewing Center. See you at Quilt Market next week.

Monday, October 18, 2010

I'm so Excited!

We had a fabulous weekend here at Redwood Sewing Center. Our Scottie Dog Mystery Quilting Retreat was a rousing success. The food was wonderful, the quilt pattern (Criss Cross Applesauce) was very well received and we got to sew the entire weekend with amazingly wonderful quilting women!

Today is Monday and somehow the Monday after Retreat can be kind of a "let down" day. But today I am so excited there is absolutely no let down. A friend had her baby boy early this morning (it's not been officially announced so I can't say another word just yet) AND.....ta da! Tomorrow our Pfaff educator is coming to do a special training just for our staff. I can hardly wait. We became dealers in late August and I began to sew on my Pfaff Quilt Expressions 4.0 machine

around the first of September. I was prepared to like my new machine, of course. But little did I know how much! I am so in love with my Pfaff! The dual feed foot on this Pfaff machine is really something....this means that any time you sew, you can have the advantage of a built-in walking foot. Oh, my! This baby keeps your fabrics from slipping, wobbling and more. My stitches are straighter and more even. I push a button and voila! Both my threads are cut. It has presser foot lift I can touch with my knee....or just tap the foot pedal and the presser foot goes up or down.....neat! On my own I learned a lot about this machine....but there is so much more to learn. I don't even know the right questions to ask. I can make button holes two ways....but this machine can make 6 different kinds of button holes. It has a wonderfully large and extended neck making quilting a larger quilt relatively easy. There are embroidery stitches up the wazoo (I always wanted to use that phrase!) and three alphabets. I can't wait until tomorrow afternoon when our Pfaff Educator comes to teach me (and my whole staff) all the tricks, tips and take away any mysteries we might have about our machines.We'll even learn to use the Pfaff Grand Quilter....of course Liz is already a pro at it. I look forward to being able to quilt our store samples right on the sales floor. Did you know that this big baby extends up to 120" (think King sized Quilt!), is complete with the table, poles, etc, has a stitch regulator and is affordable? Our lessons will be 1/2 day on Tuesday and all day Wed....but don't let that deter you if you wanted to come to the store. We'll be glad to help you....the whole staff will be here!

Did I say I was excited? Well, I am!