Home from Thanksgiving!

Kids Thksgvng 2010, originally uploaded by ivoryblushroses.

Hope that everyone had a blessed Thanksgiving! I had a lovely trip home! For the first time in many years, all the family was together around the table with the exception of my "foster" son, who spent the day with his family. How wonderful to have everyone together!

dsc_2622 Boni
My son the Marine and his girlfriend announced their engagement! No wedding date as of yet, but we're anticipating a summer wedding! This photo is from this year's Marine Ball in Denver.

Frosty Grasses 1
The ride home was lovely as there had been light snow all across Colorado and New Mexico. Near Las Vegas, NM, the frost was heavy on the grasses and I had to stop and take some photos!

Frosty Grasses 2

Frosty Sunflower Seedheads

Frosty Grasses 4

Frosty Grasses 3
The color in some of the grasses underneath the frost was amazing. So brilliant!



Linen and White Rabbit, originally uploaded by ivoryblushroses.

Every now and then, I like to change things a bit in my surroundings. This time, it was a small change, but one that I think I'm going to enjoy for the winter at least. I moved a cubby-hole cabinet from my study out to the living room next to my stitching chair.

Cubby Hole Shelf
Now I have a place to display some of my stitching items and have them close at hand. The painted sign on top was painted by my mother when I was small ~ it adorned my toy shelf once upon a time!

Sewing Boxes
I don't remember where the little brown bunny came from, but he makes me smile! The acorn is a thimble holder and was a gift from one of my closest friends! The tall wooden box is a sewing box that belonged to my great grandmother a century ago. It still houses her old thimbles (which delightfully, are just my size!) and a couple smaller wooden needle boxes.

St Francis with vine
As I was rearranging, I realized that the "wandering jew" plant had grown out onto the floor and was wandering under the plant stand and around the base of the chair. I draped it up over St. Francis in order to clean. I think I'm going to leave it to wander there for the time being!

Angel Vine
On many of the Scandinavian blogs, I've been seeing this lovely plant, known as Angel Vine, and have been wanting to find one. At Echter's Greenhouse in Colorado, they had lots of them, and one came home with me! I love the bright little green leaves on the deep brown stems. I may eventually train this up over a miniature arbor, but for now I'm content to let it send tendrils cascading over the sides of the pot!


Making Progress!

Center Block 4, originally uploaded by ivoryblushroses.
In between working on round robin blocks, I've been making sure to take some time for stitching on my own projects. Block 4 of my cream/white CQ project is coming along well!

Needle woven Daisy
I love perusing old books for embroidery ideas. This daisy came from Beeton's Book of Needlework (image 544), available online with Project Gutenberg. The original was meant to be completed using all Guipure d'Art also known as needle weaving. I chose to needle weave only the flower petals and did the rest in padded satin stitch. I can tell by my stitching when my eyes get tired, as the work begins to get less precise! Time for a new pair of sewing glasses I think! Regardless, I'm pleased with the way this turned out!

Block 4 Cream CQ
Here is an overall look at block 4 as it stands right now. The rose trellis is the next part to be completed in the lower left. Since the silkie on this block doesn't have a bird on it, I plan to add an embroidered dove, though I'm not certain yet, just where it will go. This block is also lacking in silk ribbon embroidery, so there needs to be at least one SRE motif too.
FYI, I've added a link on the sidebar for online embroidery resources of some of the wonderful old books that I love taking inspiration from! How wonderful that these rare books are now available for all of us to explore once again!


Autumn Block for Beryl

Beryl's Autumn DYB was so much fun. When I saw this patch in the pile, it reminded me of the rolling farmland in Iowa. What fun to play with a stylized idea of those farm fields! I actually stitched and then removed and restitched the block with the wheat sheaves as the first idea simply didn't work with the rest of the block.

Squirrel Detail
My favorite part of the block is the little embroidered squirrel!

Leafless Trees
The branches, which were full of golden leaves just yesterday, are this afternoon mostly barren branches reaching for the sky. It astounds me how quickly the leaves fall! I also notice that suddenly, the sun is taking a much lower arc in the sky. It is now the time when the sun's rays reach my apartment for just a short time each afternoon. Time to snug in for winter.


Golden Leaves

Golden Leaves, originally uploaded by ivoryblushroses.

The gnarled oak trees outside my windows carry a bounty of golden leaves, quickly changing to russet. Their gentle light reflects in my apartment windows bringing warmth and a sense of peace. I cherish these lingering golden days knowing that winter is just around the corner.

Pocket Prayer
With a pleasantly unexpected night off of work last night, i woke rested and refreshed this morning in a way I haven't felt in a long time. How wonderful to have a peaceful morning! I spent some time writing notes and tucked a little pocket prayer into one of them.

Wishing you each a blessed and golden day today!


Views of Southern Colorado

Sunrise Nov3 2010, originally uploaded by ivoryblushroses.

The journey back to Arizona began in the wee hours of the morning and I was near Walsenburg when the sun came up. The band of clouds turned a startling red-orange. It fascinates me how the sky below the clouds glowed golden orange while above the clouds it was almost colorless.

Spanish Peaks with Alpenglo
When I turned to look the other direction, the Spanish Peaks were catching the Alpenglo as well as each wearing a cap cloud!

Goemmer's Butte near La Veta, CO
Each time I've come this way in the past, I've wanted to detour and take the "Highway of Legends" which circles around the Spanish Peaks. The road heads south from the lovely small community of La Veta and heads up into the mountains past this butte known as Goemmer's Butte. The early morning sun made the landscape glow!

Doe and fawns
South of La Veta, the mountainsides are covered with scrub oak. When I came around a corner and saw this doe and her two fawns browsing underneath a stand of scrub oak, I had to stop for a photo!

Wild Turkeys
Not more than a couple miles further down the road, a whole flock of wild turkeys flew across the road in front of the car and landed in the field! It's delights like this that I love about traveling! In all, the detour added a little over an hour onto my travel time, but for me it was well worth it!


A Trip to the Greenhouse

With a little extra time to spare, my daughter and I took a meander through the local greenhouse, Lafayette Florist & Greenhouses. I've loved going there since I was a child and can remember walking through the greenhouses to see the carnations and snapdragons growing in midwinter for cut flowers and the greenhouses filled to the brim with homegrown geraniums and poinsettias. These days, they don't seem to grow so many of their own, but the greenhouses are still filled with a wonderful array of plants! Even though it is now November, one area was filled with blooming roses. Such a heavenly scent filled the air.

Cinnamon Girl Rose
The blossoms of "Cinnamon Girl" were my daughter's favorite of the day.

Apricot rose
My favorite were these gorgeous apricot blooms.

Edges of red
Despite the number of roses in bloom, evidence of autumn appeared here and there. These red leaf edges were beautiful.

Stepping stones
The front green house has paths and stepping stones planted with lovely ground cover. It always has seemed such a fairytale setting to me!

Koi Pond
The main greenhouse also has a koi pond complete with a large bridge that traverses it. The largest of these koi are well over a foot long!

Boston Ivy
In one of the back greenhouses, fall is quite evident in the changing colors of the Boston Ivy that has escaped it's pot to grow across the ground.

Peony Leaves
These peony leaves were just gorgeous!

Baby Tears
What a delightful and peaceful hour was spent among the plants!


Cream/White CQ Revisited

Block 3 Button Flowers, originally uploaded by ivoryblushroses.
I brought my Cream & White crazy quilt to work on for this trip to Colorado. Looking back, I see that is a work in slow progress as I started it back in 2007! Motivation and creative ideas for it seem to come in spurts. Each of the 4 blocks have certain items in common, such as a group of button flowers, a cotton printed silkie with birds and flowers, a rose trellis and a butterfly of some sort.

Block 4 Button Flowers
A trip to the antique mall resulted in a new little stash of fancy mother of pearl buttons, perfect for button flowers, so that is what I worked on first. I couldn't resist creating another bouquet of flowers using the set of tiny buttons meant for a baby dress!

Butterfly in Cream
For block 4, which seems to be coming together faster than block 3, I added a butterfly in satin stitch, inspired by one that Hideko had created.

It feels great to be working on this project again and as I see it coming toward completion, I have new motivation to focus on it and get it completed!