Wendy's Longarm Quilting, Thunder Bay, Ontario

Christmas Eve…my morning view

The blizzard warning has been lifted, the wind is still howling and we have a lot more snow than we normally do before Christmas. (Thunder Bay has been under a Winter Storm watch followed by a Blizzard warning for the last several days)

I really enjoy my early morning coffee and the reflection of our Christmas tree in my morning view.

Liam stayed the night last night. He is so excited for Christmas, we spent part of the evening working on this puzzle. Last year it was too hard and we put it aside for another time.

So much changes in a year especially a child and this year he was determined to complete it.

Wendy's Longarm Quilting, Thunder Bay, Ontario

Todays Morning View

As the Grandchildren began arriving, we began a tradition of holding a Christmas brunch the Sunday before Christmas. My thinking was it would be nicer than the pressure for young families of trying to be with everyone over a two day period.

So todays our day. The tree is decorated, gifts under the tree. Liam has a new Fort built for the cousins. Cookies are baked.

Liam and I began a tradition when he was very small of baking his favourite chocolate cherry cookies together…

This year he and his Mom mixed the dough and last night he helped me bake them…

We have enough snow! Erik has the snowmobiles ready and made the trails yesterday through the woods for fun after brunch!

It will be a full but fun day!

Wendy's Longarm Quilting, Thunder Bay, Ontario

December and Life

Big News on the life front! We found our Christmas tree!

I guess we are just a couple of old souls as we just love having a real tree for Christmas.

Every year we visit the tree farm and carefully choose our tree. It will be set up and decorated before next weekend. I love the addition of light the tree brings to our home during the less day light days this time of year. 11 more days until Winter Solstice 😊

The owners of this tree farm we recently discovered have retired and moved…yesterday I met the new owner and am so happy to say that she is so excited about their new home and venture.

On the quilting front my days and evenings have been busy helping others finish their quilts!

This one is currently being quilted, and in fact is more than halfway finished. I pieced the backing for its maker, something that I offer for free to my customers and for the most part am taken up on the offer.

I also like to take the time to press each quilt top and backing before loading onto the Longarm.

Wendy's Longarm Quilting, Thunder Bay, Ontario

Millie’s Christmas Quilt

The weather here has changed with much cooler nights and the leaves are quickly changing colour. With Fall definitely upon us it’s time to finish Christmas Quilts.

I have been quilting for Millie for several years and often pick up and deliver her quilts. It’s always fun to visit in her quilting room and see all the projects that she has going … and her stash too!

Yesterday I delivered her Christmas Quilt.

I had initially considered adding more snowflakes with my quilting however I decided that adding movement with the panto windswept would add some movement without distracting from the snowflakes on the fabric.

Another consideration was thread, when there is a lot of contrast in the fabrics choosing a thread that blends is often best and a design that won’t be partially cut off on some portions of the quilt is favourable. I used a 60wt thread in white.

I pieced the backing, the stripes worked really well.
Wendy's Longarm Quilting, Thunder Bay, Ontario

All is Calm

The picture below was taken a year ago from our garage roof by Erik last winter. I have shared it on this blog before.

I have been pondering what to write about 2021…it sure was a year of blessings and challenges. The thing about this picture of our home is that it reflects the calm and peace that it brings. Regardless of the challenges that came my way over the year I have been so thankful for this safe sanctuary.

We have been immensely blessed with family and we will soon be adding a seventh grandchild into our lives. Together we have seven daughters who along with their families truly do enrich our lives.

One day in December we were able to have a Christmas celebration with some of our family and all but one grandchild and wow what a busy party that became! Our calm quiet house came to life with so much fun and laughter!

We were so busy living life we forgot pictures…we alway enjoy our tree into the new year.

When discussing Christmas plans with my Dad, I mentioned how I had been craving a prime rib roast dinner like the Sunday dinners that I grew up with. He took up that challenge…he has really become an amazing cook in the last few years! We enjoyed Christmas dinner at my Dads.

I took care of the Yorkshire pudding and gravy and made sure to have horseradish while my youngest and her husband took care of the veggies. I should have taken more pictures but was just enjoying the moments!

Dad cooked the roast in his Green Egg bbq and it was cooked to perfection and carved just right. What a treat!

2021 has taught me many lessons, most of which I had already learned but then life has a way of adding twists and turns and detours. We said goodbye to loved ones, had health scares in the family all along with riding the current seemingly at times never ending pandemic. This year tired me out at times making me realize how very crucial self care is.

Welcome 2022… I greet you with a resolve of more self care!

My January 1, 2022 morning view! Happy New Year!

Wendy's Longarm Quilting, Thunder Bay, Ontario

Quilting and Life

We held a Christmas brunch for the grandkids and family on Sunday it was so fun to watch the kids enjoy each other’s company and open their gifts. The excitement of Christmas is alive and well with the children!

Unfortunately one of the families had had the gastro crud run through their house a week ago and we were sure they were in the clear….we were wrong. Almost everyone came down with it starting on Monday.

I was spared however Liam was not, he rarely gets sick and had never had this. We were both very glad that I could care for him through this. Much to our relief and after sleeping from late Monday night until Wednesday morning with a few wake points he is now back to his happy self. Others are recovering as well.

Liam and I really enjoyed fresh air yesterday

We also made some slime

While he slept I was able to quilt my Moda Blockheads quilt and will work on the binding later today. This is my first personal quilt to be quilted this year!

I first saw this sunshiny backing on a customer quilt and loved it!

Wendy's Longarm Quilting, Thunder Bay, Ontario

Mid December

December is always an interesting and busy month. I loved the result of the last snowfall, the whole world just looks so bright and clean esp when the sun comes out.

Yesterday however was a grey and foggy one and we had rain overnight and a forecast of snow later today. I do love a white Christmas so hopefully there will be more snow.

Quilting has been busy of course and the Christmas jobs are almost finished. One small one to go for later today.

Of course my machine had a hiccup as a Longarm sometimes does thankfully it was easily resolved, it was a worn out bobbin case…yes they wear out!

Our tree is up and when Liam arrived on Monday the lights and garland were on it and he saw the ornaments and went right to work hanging them while I made supper.

Liam did such a nice job and it was fun telling him the stories of the ornaments as I have collected special ones over the years. Many have been carved by my Dad and painted by my Mom. This year I bought a box of candy canes to add to the tree which Liam though was a fantastic idea.

Liam will spend more time here over the holidays and we have baking plans, his request as we have done so every year that he can remember. He also wants to build and sleep in his lego fort one night and like me he is hoping for a white Christmas. He wants the snow for another reason though, he and Pappa like to drive the snowmobiles!


Moving Along

I remember learning about Lapland in school and thinking to myself I’d like to go there someday…

We stayed in this hotel in Rovaniemi, Finland. Even though it was July, it felt almost like Christmas, which is part of Rovaniemi’s claim to fame being so close to the Arctic Circle and of course the home of Santa Claus.

The room was a little different than in Canada or the US, twin beds to begin with, the room was much smaller as well. I am 5’1″ tall so I found the rooms in Finland suited me just fine but I would imagine taller or bigger people would miss the biggie sized everything that we have here.

The bathrooms were all compact as well.

This next picture was taken around 2am. The days were so long in July, they are the opposite right now of course.

We went exploring after dinner, what an interesting little town.

While we were in Finland my daughter and grandson moved to Texas….to live with my Son-in Law. While I am so happy that they are all together, I can’t help but wish that they would move up here. I called Sarah the other day to let her know she needed to come home and decorate our tree, she told me she had checked our weather that morning and our -35C with the wind-chill wasn’t much of a draw. Though she did tell me that her husband had warmed up his car that morning because it was chilly….

This will be our first Christmas apart; hopefully they’ll be able to join us next year for a white Christmas.

My second daughter and boyfriend are flying down today for a visit. Auntie Emily is so excited well so is Sarah, the sister bond is so special. I’m really looking forward to more pictures and stories.

Emily is delivering Christmas gifts. One is Jerry’s quilt that I was finally able to finish up. I thought it would be fun to get a few outside shots of it to share some snow with them.

I made his quilt using a layer cake of the Pure collection by Sweetwater (MODA) The blocks were shown in a recent quilting magazine that I’ve loaned to my Mom. I’ll add that information soon as it was such a fun block to sew.

Thank you to Jocelyn for commenting and refreshing my memory. Please check out Jocelyns blog post where she suggested that we run not walk and buy Quiltmaker Magazine because of a block that they had in that issue. She included a tutorial and link, and I that very afternoon went to Chapters and  bought my own copy, and made a sample block that night. I also made a 1/2 version and is it ever cute!

Doesn’t this picture look so inviting with all the fresh show, no leaves to rake? I’m really looking forward to new pictures with Jerry on his new quilt.