Sunday, August 14, 2022

Middlin' Through August

Last week we were away for a few days, visiting our friend who lives on New Smyrna Beach (Atlantic Ocean). It's always lovely to see her, and get a fresh perspective on life in Florida. This is a morning view from her tenth floor condo.

An outdoor lunch at the Outrigger (restaurant) was especially nice. 

We couldn't believe our luck at being beachside when another Falcon 9 rocket was launched from Cape Canaveral at 10:14 pm, carrying 52 satellites! I really wished I'd taken my camera along, rather than capture poor, grainy iPhone photos. The rocket was orange. It was remarkable to hear the sound too!

A thank you gift to our hostess, for her always-generous hospitality was my Seaglass quilt #2, finished in May. This is the one made with a linen background. She seemed to love it, and intends to hang it in her condo. 

Machine-piecing time has been very sporadic, so there's not much different happening with my improv log cabin quilt top. 

Starting August 1, I've been participating in "30 Days of Improv QAL" #30daysofimprovqal hosted by @shannonfraserdesigns and @broadclothstudios on Instagram. Though it's suggested that in five days of block-making each block should be about 5" X 5", we're free to do as we wish. I am.

Week 1: Stripes

Week 2: Polygons
I chose to focus on trapezoids. I'm keeping this totally improv and haven't been using any rulers, but my blocks haven't been very wonky. I've spent too many decades rotary cutting precisely using a ruler! The un-wonkiness of my blocks may be something I correct once I start joining blocks together. 

The end is in sight with my Alison Glass Stitch Club Kantha Sew Along! Good thing; it's due August 31. I have 16 more rows (75" long) to stitch. You can see the blank spaces that need to be filled it along the bottom of the dark blue section. 

Yesterday, our Central Florida MQG meeting program was "Demo Day." Six stations were set up to show how to choose colors, appliqué, set up quilt photos, use a particular ruler, improv piece, and make Kawandi. Six times I explained and demonstrated Kawandi using two different in-progress Kawandi. This is one I'm working on using more of my Grandma's vintage scraps. 

I mentioned also that Sujata Shah, who taught me Kawandi in a November 2020 virtual workshop, will be teaching Kawandi at QuiltCon 2023, next February, in Atlanta.

This Tuesday morning at 10 AM (Eastern time) QuiltCon registrations open for MQG members only, A lecture costs $14.40 (last year $12.75) and a half-day workshop is $96 (last year $79.20). Just another  instance of rising costs. Still, I plan to be in line online to get my free admission, a few lectures, and two workshops.

Book Recommendations
It's apparent I need to blog more frequently because my book recommendations are piling up!

http://The first review is of an e-book, a very short story in the "Ruth Galloway series" by Elly Griffiths. Ruth's First Christmas Tree is a charming piece about Ruth needing a Christmas tree because her daughter Kate needs to experience a real Christmas. Ruth buys a tree from a roadside vendor, who absconds with the tree and the money paid for it, so DCI Harry Nelson (Kate's father) and Cathbad make sure Ruth and Kate have a proper tree.

This book - number 4.5 in the series - isn't necessary to the plot of Ruth Galloway stories, but was a nice read. I was able to download it at no charge through Google Books.

Because the story is so short, I'm not counting it in my year-long tally of books read with is 56 as of this blog post. Linda's score: 3.5/5.0

A Dying Fall is also an e-book, written in Elly Griffiths' well-done style.

In this fifth book of the series, Ruth is traveling - with Kate and Cathbad - to Blackpool to follow-up on a letter Ruth received following the death (in a house fire) of an archeology college mate, Dan. In the letter, Dan indicates he's found the burial site of King Arthur. As a forensic archeologist, Ruth is intrigued to visit the site and see the bones. When Ruth discovers the bones have been replace (the upper and lower jaws don't match), Dan's computer and notes are missing, and she receives threatening text messages, she realizes Dan's death may not be accidental. Meanwhile DCI Harry Nelson is on holiday in Blackpool, visiting his mother, and reconnecting with an old friend on the police force. when he Nelson learns about the case, and becomes involved because of Ruth and Kate.  Linda's score: 4.0/5.0

Remarkably Bright Creatures is a delightful book written by Shelby Van Pelt.

Seventy year-old Tova Sullivan is a widow who volunteers as a nighttime cleaner at a local aquarium. She takes pride in her work, making sure every surface is spic and span. She also talks to tanks of sea creatures as she works. One night she discovers the giant Pacific octopus, Marcellus, in the break room, tangled in electrical cords. She frees him and helps him return to his tank. From that experience she develops a unique relationship with him.

The story is also about Tova's girlfriends - they're the Knit-Wits; Ethan who owns the local grocery store; Tova's son Erik who disappeared at the age of 18; and the knowledge Marcellus has about what happened that night. When Cameron comes to town looking for his long-lost father, he meets Ethan and Tova, and things begin to change. 

It took me a bit to get my head around this story because much of it is told by Marcellus, the giant Pacific octopus! It's excellently narrated by Marin Ireland and Michael Urie. Linda's score: 4.4/5.0

Dirt Creek by Haley Scrivenor, takes place in a small town in rural Australia. Esther and Ronnie (Veronica) are 12 year-old best friends who have grown up together. When Esther disappears while walking home from school, Detective Sergeant Sarah Michaels is put on the case, asking questions of everyone who knows Esther - her parents, relatives and school mates. When school friend Lewis tells Detective Michaels that he saw Esther walking along the creek with a man Lewis has never seen, more questions are raised than answered. Ronnie is determined to find Esther herself. 

Sophie Loughran beautifully narrates this book - don'tcha just love an Aussie accent? This is Hayley Scrivenor's debut novel. I'll be watching for more from her! 

Linda's score: 4.4/5.0



Patty said...

HOw fun to see the rocket launch! What classes do you hope to sign up for? I'm still trying to decide.

Susan said...

The Seaglass quilt will certainly look quite at home in your friend’s home. And how interesting that the novel Dirt Creek is known as Dirt Town here in Australia. I have it reserved also!

Anne / Springleaf Studios said...

Yeah on being so close to finishing your Kantha. The texture looks amazing! Glad to hear you are out and about to the ocean. I would love to see a launch. It's long been an interest of mine and especially now that our son works in the space industry.

Nancy @ Grace and Peace Quilting said...

It's fun reading about all your quilt and other doings! I can't read fast enough to keep up with your book recommendations! Good thing I can look back on your blog!


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