Saturday, July 28, 2007

New addition to the village

This morning I made blueberry pancakes with real Vermount maple syrup, lots of coffee, bananas with fresh strawberries and english bacon. The blueberries were from France and gorgeous. The Strawberries were picked yesterday in a field not far from our house...most were consumed during the drive home. Due to the lack of water I hadn't cooked in days. This morning I decided to splurge a bit. It helped!

The photo on the left is our village blueberry...a blue bowzer (in the army we called them water buffalos!) There are four of them within walking distance so we are pretty lucky. They also give out bottled water each night at the village hall. I've been really impressed with how helpful everyone is being. They say we may get water in the lines by mid-week that we can use to flush toilets and clean. That will help.

It is amazing how much water it takes to get through the day! We fill the Folgers containers on the left at least twice a day. We have enough bottled water for drinking, cooking and coffee (as noted by other bloggers the latter is an absolute necessity!) At one point my DH threatened to toss my boxes of empty coffee containers. He thought I was planning on building and earth ship or something with them! The first few days of the shortage we gave out most of them to our neighbors. They are large enough to make a trip to the bowzer worth-while but small enough that our elderly neighbors can lift them. I knew being a pack-rat who hates to throw out anything that could be reused would work out someday!

They say we are going to get some more rain tomorrow. The photo on the left is of our main street. Even this morning there was still run-off from a bit of rain last night. The soil is so saturated that the roads fill up with only a few minutes of rainfall! It is also difficult because the water did so much damage to the road. When the water is across the road you can't see the huge potholes and it can bottom out the car! it could even be worse if you try and walk through it (I did go out and buy my first pair of wellies yesterday! Thought that might stop the rain!)

I am working on some Halloween tablerunners. I wanted to play in the bright colors! I'll try and get some photos later tonight.

Checked my mailbox on Friday...still no Harry Potter book...I love Amazon but they really let me down on this one...

Sunday, July 22, 2007

Water everywhere and not a drop to drink

Well it has continued to drizzle on and off today but that isn't the worse of our problems...the local water plant is now under 5 feet of water and the faucet has turned to a trickle. They say it could be a couple of days until we have water. How crazy does that sound!!!

Anyway, growing up in New England I was "trained" to have canned food, bottled water, and lots of paperproducts on hand. I think we can make it through a couple of days OK. I will be desperate for a shower by then I'm sure!
The photo is of our apple tree that was doing so well before the rain. About half of the apples are on the ground and there is a black spot attacking those on the tree. We could use a few days of sun about now. My neighbor lost most of their plums as well. This can't be good for the farmers.
I am spending the day watching the British Open and putting the final border on the sampler quilt. Amazon sent me an email letting me know my Harry Potter is on its way so I have something to look forward to this week!

Saturday, July 21, 2007

Time to build an ark...

The last 24 hours have been very, very wet and worrisome. It has rained, rained, and sometimes just poured. My DH left work at 4 yesterday afternoon. It usually takes only 20-30 minutes for him to get home. He walked in the door at 9:30!

The highway was blocked with cars and the road from the M-5 to our village was flooded in two areas. The roundabout about 1/4 mile away was the end of the line for many folks...the road was closed in all directions. We ended up with 3 visitors overnight...the man Dh carpools with couldn't get into his village because all routes into his village was closed and a young women and her 3 year old daughter whose car ran out of gas at the roundabout. The guys took pity on them and brought home. She had been on the road for 7 hour! The little one barely finished a bowl of soup and fell asleep on the couch. It made for an intersting night. The cats and the dog were happy for the company!

It stopped raining for long enough for us to get to them home this morning. It just now started to rain again. Good thing I did lots of shopping this Wednesday! (Wow, just watched two huge rescue helicopters go overhead!)

While it rained and I worried about my DH on the road I worked on my rose sampler quilt. These are the blocks I made with the group up in Fairford. The brown homespun was from an abandoned project. I really like it....wish I remembered where it came from?!

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Unanswered questions

Brownie spends much of her day sitting on our front wall. Some people have marble lions, some stone gargoyles, we have a small, fuzzy brown cat. who, as you see below, gets tired very quickly.

Not much quilty to write about today. Yesterday I had some MS problems with my leg which left me gimping and grouchy...not a pretty sight! Today I am doing better so am on my way to the library to help with the summer reading program for the 8-12 year old group (what did I get myself into!)

There have been some question from my past posts that I couldn't answer by email so here goes...

First, the red in the lavender fields are poppies. They look wonderful against the purple. There are whole fields of poppies around here and they are breathtaking. Unfortunately I usually see the field while driving on an impossibly narrow road with a high performance German made car tagging my rear bumper. Tough to get a photo that way....

Second, yes I did get fired for too many chips in the chocolate chip cookies. It was one of those jobs you take for the summer while at university. It was a small "shop/stand" in a touristy area of Boston. (I don't know if it is still there or not.) Anyway, the owner/manager was there all the time. The mixer would dump a huge lump of dough in front of the us and we would put the dough onto the pans as fast as possible. Each time you finished a pan you put it on the shelf over you and moved a bead on the stick. When the lump of dough on the table was finished the owner would check to see who finished the most pans and who did the least by counting the beads(about 5 girls were working on the pans.) Needless to say - I was never the fasted. Then she would randomly take a pand and check the size of the cookies and count the chips (no more than 4 were the rule.) I routinely flunked that as well. Did I hate the cannot imagine how much I hated it! The same day the owner gave me the "do you really want this job" speech I got a call about a summer job at the Department of Education. I think it worked out best for all of us! (except the poor customer who paid big money for little cookies with hardly any chips in them!)

Third, I was diagnosed with MS about 3 years ago though I had syptoms on and off for 4 years prior to that. I decided early on to be open about the conditin/disease for a couple of reasons: with the unsteady gait and occasional slurring of words folks could easily think I have drinking problem (with all the meds I take at most I can have a glass of wine/beer/cider with food,) it is easier to explain the condition when you feel OK rather then waiting until you feel pathetic (in my last job the office was on the third floor with no elevators! They moved me to the first floor and a week later I had an episode...if I hadn't moved I would have taken half a day to get to my office!), and finally, it makes my DH feel more comfortable knowing there is a support network in case he has to travel or work odd hours. I think trying to keep it a secret or avoiding the discussion would only add more stress to an already stressful situation.

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Lavender fields

Today I went to visit the Lavender Farm in Snowhill. The weather was a bit iffy but it held off long enough for us to get through the fields and the distillery barn. They usually are harvesting this week but because of the wet weather this summer it has moved out a few weeks. The owner gave a nice talk about the history of the farm, how to care for lavender and how the distiller operates.

I love the different colors of the lavender...makes me want to play in my hand dyed pink and purples! The scent was amazing. The teashop at the farm was packed with people so we went down the road to the Plough at Ford for lunch. It was a nice outing. I am such a wimp these days...just the morning really wore me out.

I worked on another table runner this weekend. I thought the inner border on the christmas runner was too narrow so I added a half inch to the red white and blue. It handles easier and lays flatter. The pattern for this came off of the website.

Thursday, July 12, 2007

Medieval Festival

The weather here has been nice the past few days so I haven't spent much time on the computer.

Last weekend we went to the Medieval Festival in Tewksbury. It was really fun. I thought this little boy in costume was too cute. My DH got a new walking stick so he was happy.

I did spend some time sewing this weekend. I put together a baby quilt (to be shown later) and a table runner as a sample for out all day sewing event later this month. The fabric was from my stash (I even had enough to kit up another!) I'm going to make a potholder and a tea cozy to go with it.
Sorry so short. Mac is bouncing against my leg begging for a walk (his buddy dogs just past the house....)

Friday, July 06, 2007

London City Break

First, today has been so strange. To start with, I made M&M cookies. The recipe says it makes 2 dozen so naturally I doubled it (going to a picnic this afternoon.) As I packed the cooled cookies into the tin I counted them out....48 cookies. That has never happend to me before. I was fired from a job one summer off from university because I put too many chocolate chips into the chocolate chip cookies!
Anyway...more on all that later. First I want to catch up on our latest visit up to London. Just once I would like to see the city when the police aren't out patroling in bullet proof vests and carrying machine guns! We seem to have the worst timing on our trips. It was still a great trip though. the photo on the top is me in front of the underground near Big Ben. It rained nearly the entire time we were there so the photos are all dark and we both got colds!

Our first day we went on a Harry Potter walk. I had fun but my DH was sort of miserable. There were too many people on the walk so it was difficult at times to hear the wizard leading it. He did as good a job as you could under the circumstances. The photo was taken outside the "ministry of magic." Part of the problem may be the Harry Potter movie primier was that weekend. Hundreds of screaming HP fans in Leis. Square. I like the movies but am more of a fan of the books. If it were not for the crowds, rain and a grouchy DH I may have hung around. I'd rather hear J.K. talk about how she planned the books then see some teenage actors!

We went to see Caberet that night. A bit more racey and political on stage then the movie. It is a great production though. Because of the rain I ended up spending most of the next day in the V&A. I love that museum. Hours just disappear as you sit in the textile study room. It is very quiet and a bit dark - feels like you have gone back a centry or so. I spent most of my time on the samplers but did look through some medieval pieces as well.

What a great place for inspiration. Even walking though the corridors with the examples of metal gates I could see possibilities for quilting designs! I could feel my blood pressure drop as I sat looking at the new exhibit being unpacked (maybe because I wasn't doing the unpacking!)
Got to run. (ps. thanks to all the folks who sent me tips on the hand crank sewing machine...I'm going to try it this weekend!)