Wednesday, April 18, 2018

Bakersfield or Bust!

I left this idyllic location yesterday morning as Linda’s SUV rumbled up the long drive and toward Betty Ann’s guest cottage ---

I had been getting some steps in walking up and down the vineyard road, knowing they  would HAVE to pass by me to get to the cottage – there was a whole day (or the better part of it anyway) of car sitting ahead of me and I needed that leg stretch while I could get it.

Cool morning amongst the vines?  Beautiful! 

And if you peek closely, you’ll spy an old farm house tucked in between those trees.  And the mountains in the distance?  Lovely!


Sun glinting over the vines.

There was a guy out on a tractor mowing the grass on the edge of the vineyard as well…if you turn your imagination to “smell” perhaps you’ll pick up the scent of that freshly mown grass as well.  Oh what a lovely day!


And we are off!

It was quite the effort to get not only all of MY stuff, but their belongings all in the vehicle and on the shelf hitch as well.  So happy these ladies are here for more workshop tome.  Riding with them made the journey very pleasant and time passed quickly as conversation never stopped --


Brunch along the Delta!


Oh, my goodness I know this place!

I had dear friends who lived in Merced when I was going to high school in San Jose. We had all met when our graduating Jr High classes had student day at Marriott's Great America, becoming fast friends as we stood in long lines waiting for our ride turns, and becoming pen pals after.

Oh, if only kids today could understand what it was like - a friend 2 hours drive away was LONG DISTANCE when it came to phone calls - no internet, no text - just real letters with stamps, and waiting by the mailbox to see if ANYTHING had come with that Merced postmark on it.

It was often that my dad would put me on the greyhound for a ride over to spend the weekend during the summer – it wasn’t that far, but I didn’t have a car at that time.  

The friendships and memories we made were lasting ones.


Saying "Hi!, remember me?" to the water tower of my teenagerhood!


Hello, Hanford!

California is chock full of small farming communities and out of the way small towns you have likely never heard of.  There are some that I have never heard of, either!

On this journey we stayed off the major freeways, taking back roads and a more leisurely, scenic route all the way to Bakersfield.  Hanford is about  an hour and a half outside of Bakersfield and we thought it would be a good place  to get out and wander for a bit.


What do I spy with my little eye?

This is a Wilcox & Gibbs chain stitcher treadle.  It was fun having other folks with me to explain the ins and outs of this machine to – there is no bobbin, the stitch looks much like the top stitching on a bag of dog food does – where you can pull one end and the whole thing zips out -


It may be missing a couple of parts….spool holder comes to mind.

But it isn’t often that I find one IN the cabinet with the cabinet in great shape.  This one is.  And get a load of the shape of the foot pedal:




There was also this beauty – a toy machine.

Also a chain stitcher.

The condition of this one wasn’t great and they still wanted $95.00 for it.  I did love that it had the original wood base and clamps.

What is coming home with me? A small Pyrex casserole dish with lid that matches my set, only $10.00.  The lady at the counter wrapped it up before I could even think to snap a photo, but it is half the height of my smallest round casserole at the cabin, same color, same pattern, and it is so great for things that go from oven to refrigerated leftovers, and then to the microwave the next day to reheat.  I’m doing all I can to say bye bye to anything plastic for food.


“Still life with Featherweight.”

What a wonderful welcome upon my hotel arrival in Bakersfield!  I met with my program chairs last night for dinner to plan our strategy for the next few days that I am here over a Mexican dinner.

We start today off with Wonky Wishes – and all of our workshops this week are being held at Thimble Towne quilt shop right here in Bakersfield. I’ll also be teaching My Blue Heaven and Jamestown Landing – and there are two lectures as well.


Evening Stitching!

4 more have been added to me “sewn on the road” pile!  All of these will be squared up at home.  Many more of you have been able to find the Quiltmaker May/June issue this week.  It is still arriving at stores near you, so keep checking back if you haven’t found it yet.  It’s not a race, there is no rush! 

But these Diamond Tile blocks are so cute, I can’t wait to see what you make with them! 


Quiltville Quote of the Day!

On Ringo Lake quilt shared during this week's visit to Napa.

There is always more to a story. Seek to understand both sides, not just relying on what has been passed on to you by someone else.

Dig deeper, and fact check!

Have a wonderful Wednesday, everyone!


  1. I have the Wilcox Gibbs treadle machine with the table. Feel guilty that it is not on display because of the beautiful iron frame. I was thrilled to see another one. All I needle is needles for mine to be functional!

  2. What fun on the Back Roads of Californina. Glad the quilters are willing to loan you their prized Featherweights. Such nice memories you brought to mind. I had a Pen pal or two in my youth as well. I remember waiting for the Mailman to bring me the letter. Hey, Mr Postman!!

  3. Love my Wilcox Gibbs. Knew nothing about it when I bought it, except that it was cute! Mine is Also a treadle, coffin top, glass tensioner, from 1864! And sews the sweetest tiny chain stitch!

  4. My husband was born and raised in Hanford. Go Bullpups! We drove through there a couple years ago and stopped at Superior Dairy. An ice cream single is approximately quart size. Even an ice cream lover like me couldn't finish my serving.

  5. I have no problem loaning my featherweights, especially to people who love them! I lent one to a friend of a friend last year. It came back to me in great shape!

  6. I had a director who used to say, "There is the way I see it, the way you see it and the way it really is". Her reminder to look deeper for the whole story.

  7. Hanford! Oh, Bonnie, my dad was from Aberdeen, WA, but his childhood best friend wound up living in Hanford, while we lived in Huntington Beach. I have memories of driving to Hanford so that the two great friends could spend time together. Thanks for giving me a glimpse of that part of the world again.

  8. i BOUGHT ONE of those Wilcox and Gibson machines in the cabinet at an auction. While the machine was very interesting, the cabinet was so beautiful. The curve of the drawers and the beautiful butterfly foot pedals was the prettiest part of the whole purchase. I sold it later for almost 10 times what I paid for it. If I had room for it at my home, I would have kept it.

  9. Bonnie Hi It's Claudia hubby and I share an email. YES! I had a penpal too! I also had a very best friend Suzanne Christy. We made crochet tote bags with a cloth lining. So much fun. I wanted to mention something a sweet lady told me when her kids shoes were piled by the door. "You have to pick your battles. In the scheme of things no very important." She was looking at the shoes when she told me that and I thought she was so smart! Great memories!

  10. I've checked at the local fabric chain store for Quiltmaker, but no luck yet. I ought to get to the LQS this weekend, and I will check there too. Fingers are crossed.

  11. I have the Wilcox Gibbs treadle machine with the table. Feel guilty that it is not on display because of the beautiful iron frame. I was thrilled to see another one. All I needle is needles for mine to be functional!

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