Monday, October 30, 2023

California Here We Come

 Hello Everyone,

We started driving for home on Saturday, so we said our goodbyes to Texas, our friends, the Marcus Fabrics staff, and the wonderful time we had there. According to my sister, and the AAA guide book the saying goes, "The sun is ris, the sun is set and we ain't out of Texas yet!"  We finally drove out of Texas yesterday, our second day on the road.  Once we left Houston, we spent the night in Abilene. 

I have a lot of pictures to share over the next few days.  This morning I'm just focusing on the Marcus Fabrics booth. Shop owners come and sit at the booth to see all of the new offerings and order fabric......hopefully lots and lots of Hearthstone!

The booth was so beautiful!

After driving through freezing fog and 26-degree temperatures, we made it to Albuqueque, NM and spent the night here.  Is this a Halloween sunset or what!

We are going to try to get to Needles, CA today.  We have to get all the way across New Mexico and Arizona to meet our goal.  I have my last retreat for the year starting on Sunday, so we can't take time to stop and smell the roses.  It's California or bust today, and it's Mr. Joe's birthday.  In celebration of his special day, I'm treating him to our free breakfast at the Hampton Inn!  No expense will be spared.


Friday, October 27, 2023

It's Show Time

 Hello Everyone,

My Bridle Path quilt was one of the first things that went on display in the Marcus Booth.  It's right on the end and close to the food vendors, so she should get a lot of attention.

The Marcus crew will turn this blank space into a wonderland of quilting goodies.

Crates were shipped from New York to the convention center.

I would say the show is considerably smaller than the Spring Market I went to a few years ago.  This one I can walk through easily in a day.

Mr. Joe and I went out into the upstairs and took this picture looking down on the displays in the works.

In the afternoon we met up with Carrie and Katie from Pieceful Gatherings, and Kellie from Tulip Cottage Quilts.  I had alligator for the first time and yes, it tasted like chicken.

We walked 13,000 steps yesterday, so last night we sat by the pool, put our feet up and enjoyed a cocktail.  I highly recommend Texas Tea!

I make my presentation at the Schoolhouse session at 11am.  Then there's a sales meeting for me to attend at noon......then we are footloose and fancy free to enjoy the show!


Thursday, October 26, 2023

Houston Quilt Market

 Hello Everyone,

Yesterday we drove through the scenic Texas Hill Country and stopped at our first quilt shop, One Quilt Place in Fredericksburg, TX.  The shop is 4,000 square feet of quiltiness!

I gave Beverly, the shop owner, one of my Sew'n Wild Oaks bags along with a copy of my Patchwork Math book and a fat 1/8th tower of my Hearthstone collection.  She is on her way to Quilt Market today, and I hope to see her again.

This is Steve's room.  He made all of the quilts in the room and he long arms!  I hope to meet Steve tomorrow.

There's so much to see in the shop.

Many antiques are included in the fabric displays.

They even have their own line of Hill Country fabric!

This morning we got our Marcus Fabrics credentials so we can come and go throughout the show as we please.  It's not even 10am and I've walked 5,000 steps!  Mr. Joe and I found the room where my Schoolhouse session will be tomorrow.  We checked out the electrical....and it looks like all is good.  I do not like to have any last-minute surprises, which will make me nervous.


Houston Day 5

 Hello Everyone,

I only have time for a quick post this morning.  We have arrived!  I took this picture through the window of the Conference area. I'm so excited to be able to go in the building today.  It just doesn't seem real.

We are on the 24th floor of the Marriott Marquis hotel which is right across the street from Quilt Market.  This is just one of the pools!  I would love to swim laps around that pool.

They do things BIG here in Texas.  More later.  


Wednesday, October 25, 2023

Houston Road Trip Day 4

 Hello Everyone,

Well, we made it to Texas, and we will be leaving Ozona this morning and head to either Austin or Houston.

The freeway system in El Paso was a maze of over and under passes which really surprised us.

There were a lot of signs saying not to pick up any hitch hikers, and there was one inspection station where we had to stop.  Once we stopped, we were waved right on through without the car being inspected.  I guess they saw some quilting things and figured there wasn't any room for a passenger.

The landscape at times is interesting, but we got do bored we started a roadkill list. We are up to:
3 coyotes, 2 undetermined carcasses, 1 rabbit and 3 snakes.

Mr. Joe takes me only to the finest dining establishments.  This restaurant came highly recommended by the hotel staff for Texas BBQ.

Mr. Joe is into smoking meats, but this smoker looked a little sketchy.

This was the outdoor dining area.  It may look sketchy, but the food was good!  Everything was fine until the owner came out and proceeded to swat a mosquito off of Mr. Joe's forehead. Unfortunately, she was missing a few fingers and she missed.  I asked her to swat him again, but the mosquito was long gone by then.

The food was so good I think it should be featured on Drive-Ins, Diners, and Dives.

Houston here we come!



Tuesday, October 24, 2023

Houston Road Trip Day 2 & 3

 Hello Everyone,

This is what we look like after being in the car together for three straight days looking at cacti, sand and wide-open places.

We crossed into Arizona on Sunday and met up with our granddaughter and her boyfriend in Mesa, AZ.

They are both going to college and holding down jobs.  Our granddaughter is taking 17 units at Arizona State University, and she is one busy gal.  Her boyfriend is also going to college and holds down two jobs.  These two are very focused on school, work and each other.  Our granddaughter's boyfriend has a red beard which qualifies him to be an actor in Outlander.  His last name is MacDonald, so he is overqualified.

We also had the opportunity to watch #22 play in an ice hockey game.  Mesa has not gotten the memo that this is the end of October, and it shouldn't be 100 degrees outside! It was nice to be inside the ice rink.

We then headed to Las Cruses, NM.

We've seen a whole lot of this.

We have also seen some interesting land formations.

I call these naked mountains draped with soil.  Our mountains are covered with pine trees, so we never see what's underneath.

We spent the night in Las Cruses, and we were awakened by a thunderstorm that was so strong it shook a 4-story hotel!  It poured and hailed.  I listened to the news this morning, and the area received 1-1/2" of rain overnight.  The air should be nice and clear this morning as we head off to Texas.


Sunday, October 22, 2023

Houston Here I Come - Day 1

 Hello Everyone,

Just a quick post today.  We headed out yesterday for our road trip to Quilt Market in Houston.  It wouldn't be possible to drive through the Central Valley of California without stopping at Andersen's Pea Soup.  It wasn't a soup kind of day, so I opted for a salad.

After driving a zillion miles through the valley, we turned East to Bakersfield, and finally saw a mountain.  I was so encouraged the landscape was changing.

We drove through the Tehachapi mountains and saw the wind farms.  Eons ago, I mapped all of the wind turbines at my job at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory. It was nice to see them in person.

Our goal was Barstow and we made it.  

We are setting out for Mesa, AZ today.  We are planning to meet up with our granddaughter and boyfriend for dinner and watch Dan play in a hockey game.  It's going to be a long drive with fun at the end of the day.


Thursday, October 19, 2023

To Market to Market....

 Hello Everyone,

Such a busy, busy week here under the pines for me and Mr. Joe. We've been hustling and filling orders.  The Double Dutch kits sold out this morning.  Thank you to everyone who purchased one.  The Mondays with Marcus generated a lot of pattern sales too; and to say I was overwhelmed is an understatement!  Mr. Joe and Mazey were making 2 trips to the post office each day.  Mazey loved it since she gets a treat after each trip.

I've been preparing for my Schoolhouse presentation at Quilt Market in Houston. I'll be presenting Patchwork Math in 30 minutes.  I'll have to be talking like an auctioneer to pull this off.  If any shop owners are reading this, I will be in room 372DE at 11am on Friday the 27th.  

I'll be going over formulas and construction techniques for just a few of the components in my Patchwork Math Book.  I guarantee it will be a fun and informative session.

This week I remade all of my step-outs using my Hearthstone fabric.  This wasn't trivial and it took me two days to complete the task between my shipping duties.  I'm happy to say they are DONE!  The best thing about it is they are now completed and ready for the next time I teach Patchwork Math.

Mr. Joe and I thought it would be fun to do a road trip to Houston, and we hit the road bright and early Saturday morning.  We will be stopping in Tempe, AZ to see our granddaughter who's attending ASU.  The added bonus is meeting her boyfriend, and we get to go to one of his ice hockey games.

I'll be posting our travels along the way.  Last year at this time I was just returning from a road trip to North Dakota.  The scenery in the southwest is going to be a lot different in comparison to the northern part of the US.  

The last time we drove through the southwest was in 1972 in a 1967 finicky Mustang Fastback with a 390 engine......during a gas shortage. The car went through gas like a sieve. We set out to go across country to visit Mr. Joe's parents who lived in Alabama, with only $200 in our charge cards.  What were we thinking?  Two young kids without a care in the world out on an adventure.

Fifty-one years later, our circumstances are a bit different.  Our hotel room in Houston, for one night, is double the amount we had for our first trip!  The Houston Astros are in the baseball playoffs and the hotels are doing a bit of price hiking! 

I like to think we are still two young kids without a care in the world out on an adventure.



Sunday, October 15, 2023

Mondays with Marcus

Hello Everyone,

Today is the day to finally show you my Mondays with Marcus project called Double Dutch Treat.  As a designer for Marcus Fabrics, I was asked to create a design inspired by my trip back to New York to meet and spend time with the wonderful Marcus staff.

Prior to my trip, I read the book New York by Edward Rutherfurd. I learned that the colony of New Netherland was founded on the southern tip of Manhattan Island and was christened New Amsterdam, the capital of New Netherland in 1624.  Brooklyn, Harlem, and Wall Street (Waal Straat) are all names from the colonial Dutch.  Wall Street was originally built as a wall to protect New Amsterdam from pirates, and potential dangers to the colony. The Bowery (bouwerij) is also a Dutch word which means farm. I doubt there are too many farms in Manhattan now! The New Netherland colony was founded in a spirit of trade, and everyone was welcome. 

What do you think of when you think of Dutch, other than wooden shoes, and windmills…..tulips!  That is why I designed Double Dutch Treat. The double treat in this project is that you get to see the luscious Lanacot wools blending perfectly with my Heathstone cotton fabric line.  

We took the table topper out on a photoshoot to Cooper Winery in Plymouth, CA.  Mr. Joe loves this old truck, and we always thought it was a great place for a photoshoot.  This fake little steer was our California version of the Bull on Wall Street.  I'll have you know we were warned about rattlesnakes when we attempted to take this picture.  I'm still in recovery mode for my venomous bites, and I wasn't taking any chances, Mr. Joe had to put the table topper on the steer.

To download the free pattern, click HERE.  To print the pattern, go over to FILE on the upper left-hand side of the screen, scroll down to PRINT.

I'm also selling a limited number of kits in my Etsy shop HERE. I'm sorry I will not be able to ship the kits Internationally.   

Please let me know if would like to purchase the pattern only if you are unable to print it.

I want to thank the staff at Marcus for making me feel so welcomed.  My sister, Gail and I had so much fun in New York and we made memories to last a lifetime.