Tuesday, October 06, 2020

Meanwhile, in a World Away -

Jason has been exploring South Dakota over the past few days and has sent us the most amazing photos – including a live video chat while watching the sunrise over the Badlands yesterday.

He is seeing so many amazing aspects to this beautiful country, and I know that even though this is a tough time for him in so many ways – it is also a time of self-discovery and reconnecting with family on a deeper level.  Simply because there IS TIME.

He sent this photo of a buffalo just grazing out next to his vehicle as he drove on by.  How amazing is this?

This photo of the Badlands is so full of color and texture – and I am so glad he is experiencing all of this. 

The first time I visited the Badlands I was about 14 years old.  My dad, my two brothers and I drove from Minneapolis back to San Jose California – catching all of these same sights along the way.

I remember all of us wearing red and blue striped rugby shirts, the Wilkinson Family “uniform” just so Dad could keep tabs on us and know where we were.

It was my first time seeing buffalo roaming.  It was my first time seeing the wonders of the Badlands and finding beauty in such a desolate wonder.  It was my first time going on cave tours and learning about stalagmites and stalactites and all of those things that the ground above hides below.

It was also the first time to see Mount Rushmore, and Jason sent us this photo from last evening:

Mount Rushmore is one of those wonders that you really have to see to believe, and a photo will never do it justice.  I am boggled by how these likenesses were carved and chiseled from the face of a mountain.

I love that my son is experiencing the same sense of wonder and awe that I also felt earlier in my life – I only wish I was sharing it with him in real time!

Meanwhile, back at the ranch INN – this was my yesterday with much pounding and sawing.

The gutter guys arrived right on time and began their job of pulling off old fascia board and molding, in preparation for new guttering all around the house on both levels.

 While the retreat ladies were packing up to the left of the house in the drive, the gutter guys were setting up saws and other equipment behind the QPO to the right of the house, leaving me to park in front of the QPO. 

I had to catch my breath a time or two as 115 year old molding was being ripped off the house – and tossed to the ground.  But I know this is for the better because without gutters, wood siding will continue to rot. There are not enough coats of paint to stop the rot.  Gutters are needed.

When it comes to things like this I ask myself “What would the original owners have wanted you to do? What would they have done had they lived now?”  GET THE GUTTERS!

And this was SO FUNNY!

I had gone to the front door as retreaters were going through their pack up routine to check on things, and to start the gathering of the laundry.

This sign was on the front door.  Quilt Pox! LOL!  Click to Play:

These ladies had a wonderful and SAFE retreat!  I am so glad. Their laughter will be missed, the shenanigans and abundant creativity remembered.  And we will see them again next year.

With such a crazy “run between” day – Throwing Monday mail order processing into the mix of folks leaving, overflowing laundry tackled, gutter guys banging and sawing – the MOST I could really get done in the patchwork department was to kit a few more Nearly Lemoyne blocks.  And stitch up TWO.  At that point I hit the brick wall and headed home.

These two!

Zoey Jo and Ivy Lea are now BOTH claiming ownership of the top-of-the-crate real estate!

Ivy says “But I was here first!”

My reply: “You girls better share the space, or you are BOTH going elsewhere!”

No actually, that open mouthed photo was a huge yawn from Ivy, and they both settled in together, right as rain.  What a pair!

Today – More gutter activity, hopefully some piecing time, and a chiropractor visit late afternoon.

Quiet Tuesday ahead, well, except for the sawing and hammering and….but you get it!

Anything happening from your side of the monitor?

Are you feeling the pull to make some string pumpkins yet?

Sharing some Punkin Patch love from Patchwork Playground, her version of my Punkin Patch Quilt found in my book String Frenzy! This quilt looks adorable even without the borders as shown in the book pattern!

Through the month of October, the PDF pattern for my Punkin Patch Table Runner is on sale at half-price for only $5.00! No coupon needed!

I love this one that Jen made, using a neutral background instead of black!  What background do you see on yours?

Melinda Keppler's Appalachian Autumn!

She writes:

“I just finished the machine quilting of my Appalachian Autumn Quilt. I had a large collection of orange/fall type fabrics so I was easily able to make this from my stash. I only purchased a few extra grey fabrics so it would look more scrappy. I love it! Thanks, Bonnie, for another great pattern.”

Beautiful finish, Melinda!  The pattern for Appalachian Autumn is also found in the digital pattern category of the Quiltville Store.  You can be pulling fabrics and stitching pumpkins and/or autumn leaves in MINUTES!

Quiltville Quote of the Day -

I was talking with a friend on how to feel more productive. One of the biggest things is to not feel guilty over the creative stuff you own, or bad about what you don't own.

Don't compare your studio space to anyone else's - whether you are stitching at the kitchen table, taking over the dining room, or using a small space in your basement, it doesn't matter.

Create in the space that is yours.

Whether it is messy, or clean doesn't matter. What matters is that you allow yourself the time to do what you love even if it is full of mistakes and false starts. No judging on yourself!

There should be no GUILT in QUILT!

Now get in there and do it!


  1. Those ladies are so funny! There is no cure for QuiltPox. Oh to be closer so I could join them. Jason is a great son to share his trip virtually. That eases your mind about how his trip is. Awesome pictures. Gotta go home next Summer through South Dakota.

  2. What a "happy" filled post - Mother Nature's glory, the colors in your photos, the stories, the four-legged family members, just all of it. Thanks for a day brightener.

  3. That picture Jason took of the sunrise over the badlands should be entered in a contest. It is incredible!! Have a great day sewing. :)

  4. I'm so glad your son is enjoying my home state of South Dakota. The Badlands and Black Hills are places I never tire of visiting.

  5. We camped in South Dakota parks (I think it was Teddy Roosevelt state park?) and enjoyed the Badlands, Mount Rushmore, etc. Camping was not my “thing” while I was in high school! (This was about 1974-1975j. One morning, everyone was saying “Sally, Sally! Get up! Look at the buffalo, There’s a herd of them right here!” Of course, I thought it was just an attempt to get me up. But sure enough, there was a whole herd of them maybe 30 feet from our tents!

  6. Thought of you last night when sorting a large bag of scraps ("If someone doesn't take them, they go in the garbage") left at our guild meeting last night. Almost all already cut in strips, they just needed sorting, which my son's two 3 month old kittens were happy to help with! My Scrap User's System just doubled - but also added some odd sizes, like enough matching 1" for 2 whole 1/2" borders.

  7. So glad Jason is enjoying his visit to SD. I was born and raised here and never left. I worked at Mt. Rushmore for 6 summers and I never tire of seeing it or experiencing the beauty. I used to work with the last carver on the mountain before he passed last year. He told of going up in the lifts and using picks and axes to chisel away the granite to form the faces. He lied about his age so he could work there and play baseball for the Mt. Rushmore workers team.

  8. I love the mix of Jason's photos mixed with your photos. He is having an experience that he will always remember. He is making the best use of this time. Yesterday our Renewal Ranch charity group finally got together. Six of us got together masked and worked to make quilts for group of men who are trying to get their lives back from drug and alcohol abuse so they can rejoin their families. We try to make at least 50 quilts a year for them. They are allowed to keep these quilts in each phase of their future lives. We are given and use a lot of scraps.

  9. There is a vaccine for quiltpox. It is stash enhancement ;-)

  10. This is the best picture of Mount Rushmore I've ever seen. Beautiful. As for your scrappy quilts - it's the weirdest thing, I'll think that's too much scrap, I'm not liking what Bonnie's doing..then BOOM the quilt is done and GORGEOUS! I love your scrappy quilts.

  11. Your son is getting some fabulous photos! Glad he's able to enjoy our beautiful country. So glad we RV'd extensively for many years and I was able to visit every state (though Hawaii by RV wasn't possible). Going that way allows you to see everything in between!! I love that pox sign on the door--too funny! And my pumpkins are on black just like yours..so striking! I have 6 leaf blocks made for my Appalachian quilt. Slow and steady dontcha know.

  12. Great photo of Mount Rushmore! I too am amazed that they were able to carve those faces out of a rock wall with the tools they had available at the time. I love the fact that you're still having Retreats at the Inn. That warms my heart.

  13. Oh how precious are the pictures of Zoey and Ivy. I'm so happy to see the two of them together sharing their space. They are just "too cute"!
    Do they ever get upset with one another? Just curious!

  14. Jason's photo of the Badlands looks like a set for Star Wars! Out of this world gorgeous! I haven't done pumpkins yet but I think my favorite of all I've seen is with a brown background.

  15. Oh, if only . . I've already had Covid. I want to raise my hand and submit to quarantine at your Inn for quilt pox. Oh, please! Please!

  16. My dog (rotweiller) is named Zooey too. I am sure they would be great play pals!

  17. jason’s pictures are awesome. I will be making the Appalachian Autumn when at a retreat in January.

  18. Thank you for showing the photo of the buffalo. I was born in Nebraska although I have lived in PA seems like forever. It's wonderful to think the buffalo are back. Growing up the only buffaloes we saw were on quarters or the statue in Pioneer Park in Lincoln, NE.

  19. Lol that really made me chuckle, sounds like the sure had fun at the Inn.
    Exciting that your new gutters are getting put up, a very wise move on your part.
    ZoeyJo and Ivy Lea sure look comfy together, it’s a special and precious friendship that they have.
    Stay safe
    Love and quilty hugs
    Anne xxx

  20. Please start sharing what the retreaters are doing. I miss that. I know there are others that don't think it is responsible, but we are each the judge of our own actions.

  21. Imagine my surprise when my sister messages me- isn’t that your quilt on Bonnie’s blog. Yes it certainly is. Pulled out my leftovers from that quilt on Monday to make a couple runners

  22. Bonnie after finding my quilting peace again I want to thank you for so much inspiration. Your daily blogs keep me laughing and remembering that nothing should get in the way of our peace.

  23. Always so many great comments here. I LOVE reading the blog with my morning cuppa. and BONNIE asks: Anything happening from your side of the monitor? LOL CRAZINESS. I am getting my bundle of tops together. Ladies in Sublimity, OR are taking orphan quilt tops and quilting for the victims of the devastating fires on the West side of OREGON. I am part of a small but MIGHTY group of quilters and with my sometimes flagging energy and boundless enthusiam will be sending said tops in the next few weeks. There are so many people who have lost ALL. I lost all back in 2001, so the project is near and dear to me and truly hit home HARD. I posted in early Sept about this project on my FB timeline and cried the entire time... lots of memories and emotions. THAT is on my side of the screen this morning! Along with defrosting the freezers, laundry, scrubbing ice chests for winter storage... and other common stuff.. Hopefully a no tears day, but no guarantees. QUILT ON!

  24. Please thank Jason for sharing his great pictures. I looked at his pictures of the Badlands and immediately thought what a great batik it would make.

  25. I am delighted to see Jason's pictures of South Dakota and Mt. Rushmore.We were there back in early 90's. Made me wistful but full of gratitude for the traveling we were able to do at a younger time of life.

  26. I am enjoying Jason's pictures. It brought back memories of our trip from Ontario, Canada across the northern United States to Alberta, Canada. Zoey and Ivy crack me up. So glad they enjoy each other's company.

  27. I grew up in the Black Hills, it's a beautiful area. We just couldn't deal with the harsh SD winters anymore. We live in the TX Hill Country, not quite the same thing, but close.
    I'm glad Jason is enjoying his trip and thanks for sharing his photos with us.

  28. Love Jason's pictures - in awe. Always wanted to do a cross-country trip like that...thanks Jason & Bonnie for sharing.


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