Saturday, December 31, 2005

Soggy in Sonoma County

No, this isn't a local lake, its the Russian River flooding, but still a few hours and feet shy of cresting. That should happen tonight sometime in the wee hours.

Hubby and I were scheduled to drive to Chico to celebrate the New Year with Cousins Lori and Bob. Anyone who has ever visited Sonoma County knows that the ways in and out are limited. Our main arterial, Hwy 101 is a traffic nightmare and to be avoided at all costs. That leaves traversing the Napa Valley at either the top (Calistoga-Middletown-Clearlake) or the bottom (Napa via Sonoma). In clear and nice weather, Calistoga is do-able but very, very curvy and not for the carsick prone. Sonoma/Napa is easily done, but feeds into I-80 near Vacaville and can also be a traffic nightmare many times.

We opted to try Calistoga and encountered flooding, mudslides and large amounts of debris in the roads. After 15 minutes of white knuckling on my part, we opted off the road and rather than head directly home, we headed up towards the Russian River to see how high the river was getting (see above).

My heart goes out to the Guerneville residents being forced out of their homes. It takes a special personality to live in West Sonoma County and they always take the brunt of our storms. Towns only 20 miles west of Santa Rosa proper can get half again as much rain as we do and the clay soil is easily saturated resulting in mudslides.

Keep the good thoughts coming for these good folks.

Friday, December 23, 2005

I got tagged!

Lynn (BigFatLiberal) did it to me.
I got tagged.
Had to really think about some of these things and yes, Lynn, I'm using your format:

7 things to do before I die:
1. Go back to the UK and see it all
2. Take a train across Canada
3. Learn to draw
4. Read the classics
5. Live someplace where I can use public transportation or walk everywhere
6. Watch my grandson (and any new grands to come) grow up
7. Do more volunteer work

7 things I can't do:
1. Say "no" easily
2. Lose weight
3. Learn to like modern art
4. Sports or anything requiring physical coordination
5. Rapid hand-eye tasks like video games
6. Tolerate snobs and bigots
7. Play any type of musical instrument

7 things that attract me to blogging:
1. Gives me a place to show my quilts
2. A place to show off my family
3. Because everyone's entitled to my opinion
4. I like to read others' blogs and get to know them
5. I'm more of a reader than poster because others say it so well
6. I get to share my love of books
7. Getting to know new people

7 things I say most often:
1. "Gawd I hate that SOB" when watching the Preznit
2. Gator stop it! (to my dog)
3. I can make that!
4. ....and then you woke up
5. I need to go to the fabric store
6. Darlin!
7. Seeya

7 books I love:
1. Lonesome Dove by Larry McMurtry (anything he writes)
2. Year of Wonders by Geraldine Brooks
3. Jitterbug Perfume by Tom Robbins
(anything he writes)
4. La Cucina: A Novel of Rapture by Lily Prior
5. The Samurai's Garden by Gail Tsukiyama
6. House of the Spirits by Isabelle Allende
(anything she writes)
7. The Bean Trees by Barbara Kingolver (anything she writes)
Only 7?????

7 movies I watch over and over:
1. The Shop Around the Corner
2. Airport
3. The Day the Earth Stood Still
4. Bridget Jones's Diary
5. The Mortal Storm
6. Rebecca
7. Dirty Harry

7 people I want to join in too
1. Greyhair
2. Mister B
3. Quiltgranny
4. Qultville
5. ?
6. ?
7. ?

Wednesday, December 14, 2005

More Sew A Row

Here's another installment of the Sew-A-Row quilts from guild this year. Being a Halloween afficionado, I was lusting after this one, big time, but alas, I didn't win it.

Sharon F. started with the bug jars, followed by Lynn W. and her bats. Joanie B. did the cats, I did Drac, the Mummy and Frankie and Pat M. did the pumpkins. Lucky Pat won it. Rats.

This was probably the most fun one to work on because I had more ideas for it and I may pursue Halloween as the topic of this year's starter row.

To the right is the Chicken quilt. Pat M. started this one with the sunshine and it was to be modeled after a pattern by someone who spoke at Moonlighter's last year. (Can't remember her name) I did the second row using a chickn plate print appliqued onto the chickenwire fabric. The third person bailed, so I did that row as well, using printer fabric to include chicken and egg sayings on egg shapes, and I can't remember who did the final row. I didn't win this one, thankfully, as I was all "chickened out."

The Japanese quilt was started by Angie, who did the Square in a Square boxes. Sharon and Lynn also worked on this--I did the fans and Angie won it. I really liked this one and wouldn't have minded winning it, either. Oh well, maybe next year.

The Sew-A-Row has really been fun and I need to get cracking on my row for 2006 or Phyllis is gonna be all over me!

Sunday, December 11, 2005

2005 Sew A Row

Thanks to the superb organizational skills of Phyllis G., we just finished a Round Robin project for the year 2005 at the Santa Rosa Quilt Guild. Interested members submitted a row of blocks that was 24" to 36" wide. When the initial row was submitted, four people could sign up to add rows and we were each given a two month rotation to complete our work. At our December meeting, each participant was assigned a number based on which rotation she took and a die was rolled to determine who won the finished top.

To the left is the row I started with the dorky gingerbread men. I bought a cookie cutter and traced it, but should have gone with my original idea of just drawing one. Oh well.

I know that Pat M. did the mitten row, but I'm not sure who else worked on this one.

The project to the right was started by my friend Joanie with the big dog faces. Betty surrounded it with the dog paw prints and I added the paper pieced dog houses with dogs printed on them.

The Sew A Row project, like any round robin, is a great way for me to trade work with other quilters, and to stretch myself as a quilter. Since I never know when I sign up what will be delivered to us (other than the project I start and the project on whick I add row #2), it is a challenge to add something that will coordinate and yet add a new technique or element.

We are now starting rows for next year, but more of 2005 later.