Tuesday, 22 September 2009

A Yummy Retreat!

No retreat is complete without good food! Here are a few pictures of our culinary efforts at the retreat. Unfortunately, I didn't get pictures of every meal we had, but I got a few. If some of the other ladies have pictures, I'll add them to the post later. Cathy and I were paired up to take care of the first evening's dinner and lunch the next day. Here is Cathy preparing her wonderful dinner of roast, fresh green beans, rice and squash. It was very good after driving to the cottage all morning and sewing all afternoon! I set the table and helped with the dishes after :-).

Cathy preparing her made from scratch apple crisp for dessert. It was very cool that day, so nice to have the oven on to warm up the kitchen:

We were so full from dinner that we waited til 9:00 for dessert with a cup of tea or coffee. Yum, yum!

I brought meatball soup, homemade whole wheat bread and a macaroni salad called Rotini Riot. It is from the Podleski girls' Looneyspoons cookbook.

Thursday evening's dinner was done by Ina. She brought Nasi Goreng (an Indonesian dish) with a salad and we even had kroepoek (shrimp crackers). Sure hit the spot after a busy day of sewing!

This was our breakfast/fruit/baked goods bar at the retreat. We were well taken care of!!
We now need to go on lots of walks to work off all that good food :-).

Saturday, 19 September 2009

Cottage Retreat!

Five of us (Joyce, Liz, Cathy, Ina and me) from my local small quilting group were able to go to a cottage up north for four days of sewing. A good time was had by all and a lot was accomplished. What fun we had. It was sooo peaceful up there. The view was incredible and inspired us to creative sewing :-). This is the cottage we stayed at:

The view from the dock across the small lake:

We sewed in the diningroom. We set it up so we could all sew together and set up ironing and cutting stations in the kitchen, livingroom and bedroom. Here is the diningroom with the large windows overlooking the woods...no traffic, no people (except us!) and lovely sunshine most of the time we were there. Cathy (standing), Liz and Joyce keeping those machines humming!

Cathy is working on a coffee themed table runner she designed herself:

Liz sewing the binding down by hand on her table runner:

Joyce and Liz are sisters and kept us laughing with their sisterly bantering and memories of growing up in Winnipeg! Liz came all the way from Winnipeg to join us:

Had to make sure there was at least one photo of me to prove I was there :-). It was very cold the first day we were here so it was nice to wear 'mittens' while quilting!!

Ina is working on a little tote bag inspired by one Liz brought along. She used her beautiful Pfaff embroidery machine to decorate the seams. Liz even got to use her machine for her second little tote bag:

We had a Scrabble game set up and took turns playing between sewing. We managed to get three games completed and the score between the top few was very close keeping the final result a mystery til it was all over. The last day, we made a crossword puzzle with all our names and quilting words. We did use up all the letters, but they didn't all connect, and, no, we did not start in the middle "like you're supposed to". We were a rebellious lot, balking against the rules LOL

We had all our lunches out on the deck in the lovely warm sunshine:

Enjoying our last dinner together...check out that view of the lake from the kitchen window!

I found a box at a yard sale recently, containing these six little mini puzzles of quilts! They are only 7" x 7" and we thought they might be too easy. But, these little puzzles were anything but easy. It took us awhile to get the six together...very enjoyable activity when we needed a break from sewing. Cheap entertainment for 50c! There were only two pieces missing which was noted on the box when I bought them.

Joyce took care of some decorating and picked some gorgeous wild flowers for our centerpiece:

On the last evening, Liz got out her knitting. You can see the original little tote bag she brought along on this photo:

We even had a design wall! Cathy hung up her large piece of batting and it came in very handy for hanging up our blocks and table runners to decide on the next step or colour:

Here are the projects which we finished:

We were all in charge of two specific meals, brought one homemade, baked item for our coffee breaks and one person bought all the drinks and breakfast items and we shared the costs for that. It worked very well with everyone pitching in to help. We had wonderful meals! Now time to get back to normal. It was very inspiring to work together, see everyone's projects and brainstorm together on colours and designs.

Wednesday, 2 September 2009

Table topper for my friend Lynn

My friend Lynn had a birthday yesterday. My other friend, Amy and I went to Newmarket to visit, take Lynn out for lunch and visit a couple of quilt shops! What better way to spend a birthday than quilt shopping and visiting friends!? We sat outside and enjoyed Lynn's beautiful gardens and listened to the birds, had coffee and yummy birthday cake. Here is the table topper that I made for my dear friend Lynn. She is displaying it on her table with a lovely milk glass piece :-). She will alternate every day with the table runner Amy made for her!

I quilted leaves in the outer yellow border, larger leaves in the piano key border and loops in the inside yellow border. The center was meandered with a lovely King Tut turqouoise and brown variegated thread:

I used some of the teapot fabric that I bought from The Marsh Store in May and combined it with leftovers from the charity quilt I made this winter:

The pattern is from the newest Fons & Porter magazine, but I made mine smaller since I didn't have a larger piece of the center leaves or the teapot fabric. I can't remember where I bought the binding, but it matched beautifully: