Thursday, September 30, 2010

Birthday for Sister DillyDally!

This is my little girl, Sister DillyDally ... this is her in 3rd grade ... nine years old ... earlier this month she celebrated her 27th birthday ... no ... she never grew into those glasses ...
... she got contacts instead ... she continues to enjoy her American Girl dolls ... Mr. DillyDally and I have enjoyed every moment of her life!  We're thrilled our "Sunshine Girl" had a wonderful birthday!  Hugs ... kisses ... and lots of love to our "Swedish Princess"!

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

What a Hoot!

I have been looking forward to Day 3 of the Designer Blog Hop ever since it was announced because it showcases "Quilt Rock Star" Roseann Kermes.  Sister DillyDally and I visited her in her studio this summer ... what a thrill ... you can read the post about our visit here.
Roseann Kermes & Sister DillyDally
Obviously, I'm not very good at taking pictures with a cell phone!  It was such a wonderful day!  The project she shared today, a Fall-O-Ween Treat Jar, is just too cute.  Hmmm ... they would be great to include in care packages ... hope Sister and Brother DillyDally aren't reading this... ;-) ...

The theme for today's blog hop is taste.  I actually giggled out loud while reading Roseann's many adventures with apple pie!  What a hoot!  With taste as today's theme ... all the designers shared terrific recipes, memories and serving ideas.  I could feel myself gaining weight just reading the posts! ;-) Don't say you weren't warned!

And Roseann ... that Pillsbury Dough Boy is a two-timing little weasel ... I thought he was my boyfriend!


Tuesday, September 28, 2010


OK ... lets just say that this whole concept of blog hopping is just too darn fun!
I was so inspired by Gudrun's post yesterday on color that immediately after work yesterday I grabbed Kysa and we went out the road to take some photos and get some exercise.
As I mentioned in my post on Sunday ... fall is coming to a close here in our remote corner of the planet.
Yesterday's theme of color on the blog hop made me miss the mid-western fall colors of my childhood ... the colors in Alaska are a bit more muted ... but lovely just the same.
The theme today on the blog hop is scent ... also on Sunday's post I mentioned that I could "smell" snow.  I heard what you were all thinking..."This Mrs. DillyDally is a bit loony!"  It's ok ... sometimes that is a true statement ... I have no hard feelings ... ;-) !  But yesterday morning ... Cordovans woke to ... snow on the peaks!  And yes ... everyone in town could smell it!

Today, Sandy Gervais of Pieces From My Heart fame is the featured designer.  She shared a pattern called Pumpkin Spice ... it is adorable ... I already know where it will hang in my house!  Terry Atkinson shares an Apple Pizza Pie recipe that I can smell just thinking about it!  What fun!  I hope you all are enjoying the blog hop like I am ... what a wonderful way to dillydally!

Monday, September 27, 2010

Ten Days of Fun!

I love our cyber world ... for many reasons ... but for those of us who live in a remote corner of the world ... it allows us to participate in events that otherwise would be impossible!  Ten "Quilt Rock Stars" have organized a blog hop that promises to be a ton of fun!
Ten designers will be posting on a specific theme every day ... today's theme is color.  Each day a specific designer will share a new project design ... Gudrun of Fast & Furious fame has shared a wonderful "Corn Toss Tablerunner" today ... check it out here.  
Some of the QBees and I have participated in these before ... always great projects ... a peek into the lives of "Rock Stars" ... insights into those who inspire us to create!  What a great way to spend some of your dillydally time today!  Enjoy!

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Little Bits

Professional obligations have me so busy (I'm not complaining, I actually love my job) that dillydally time has been very limited.  So when I have a few minutes ... I do a bit of this and a bit of that ... just little bits.

Fall arrived about four weeks ago and is nearly over ... yep ... a QBee saw a light dusting of snow on the mountain peaks on Friday.  We all know it is coming ... we can feel it in the air ... we can even smell it!  So I decided I had better share a few pics of summer ...
... I tried Straw Flowers for the first time ... they held up well considering the terrible weather we had this summer ... they will be permanently on my list every spring.
I can't recall what the purple plant is ... I tried them for the first time last year ... they too, are very strong and do well with the very wet and cold summer we had.
Red geraniums are my absolute favorite summer flower ... many memories of the farm and those I love are attached to them.  With the weather the way it was ... nice blooms like this didn't happen until mid August.  The plant was beautiful ... just not enough sun to produce many flowers.
I've probably mentioned before that our humble home is built on pilings ... hence no yard ... the tide actually comes in and under our house twice every 24 hours.  When the tide is out (above picture) our front yard is referred to as "tidal flats".  The green in this picture in a very microscopic plant that grows on the surface of the mud ... in the fall it turns to this very bright green.  
This is a picture of my front yard as the tide was coming in.  Mother Nature is responsible for all of the DillyDally's yard work!  We love it!
 I knit year round ... but when fall hits the drive to knit becomes even stronger ... of course I have multiple projects at various stages of completion ... but there is nothing like celebrating the season by starting a new sweater!  ;-)  I have adored this little duck sweater ever since I got the book, The Best of Lopi, by Susan Mills and Norah Gaughan.  So a couple of weeks ago, I decided to take the plunge and make it!  So far, I have completed the body and most of one sleeve.  I can't wait until I get to the little ducks ... I am having far too much fun!  Knitting is a great way to dillydally when I only have brief bits of time because it is so easy to pick up and put down.  No ... I have no idea who will receive it ... I just had the urge to make it ... responding to a whim ... that's the dillydally way! ;-)

It was a wonderful weekend here in our little corner of the planet.  Lots of beginnings ... the first grandchild of some dear friends was welcomed into the world ... the new father a former student.  Two marriages also took place ... both of the brides and grooms were former students.  The best part about life in this remote little town is the connection I feel with those I share it with ... everyone is like an extended family member. 
Yes ... fall is nearly over in Alaska ... every season here can be a little extreme ... but whatever the season there are constants in our lives.  I make dillydallying a constant in my life ... I encourage you to do the same ... try it in little bits!

Saturday, September 18, 2010

From Scraps to Treasure

Gosh ... with going back to work ... the Valdez Quilt Festival ... it has been yet another week filled with a flurry of activities ... it was sooo busy in my little corner of the planet this week, that I wasn't even able to participate in some of the events that I wanted.  Those kind of choices are tough on a dillydallier!  ;-)  And I didn't even have time to blog!

When I returned from Valdez last Saturday, there was a big box waiting for me!  I was so excited when I saw who it was from ... Jubilee Quilting Services!  I met "Mrs. Jubilee" aka Randi Helling at the Minnesota Twins Game/Quilting event in June.  You can read about it here.  Her husband had the seat next to mine ... I drove him crazy (Randi says I didn't, but she is a very polite person) with all my silly questions (yes, it was my first time at a major league game), in conversation she shared that she had a long arm quilting company and we were both huge Terry Atkinson fans.  Randi was actually tacking down the binding on a top made by Terry A.!  Yikes!  Can you imagine?  The Thrill!

 I also got a thrill when I opened the box ... look at the wonderful way Randi packaged it ... like opening a treasure!
Teacup immediately took ownership ... even before I could get it out of the bag!  I went to grab the camera so it would be ready when I unfolded the quilt ... and there she was ... she was not a happy kitty when I made her move!
Scrap quilts are so busy ... I always have a tough time deciding how they should be quilted.  Randi gave me excellent advice ... and helped me by offering options ... her expertise really paid off ... I am thrilled with her workmanship and the design she helped me choose!  I wish I knew how to take pictures that would really showcase Randi's talent ... her quilting is amazing!
I had prepared the binding when I did the borders ... so wasted no time in sewing it on.  Teacup not only supervised ... she had to be intimately involved in the process ... she was very naughty.
Teacup was such a pest ... I couldn't help but mess with her a little bit!  ;-)  This quilt is 96 by 104 inches ... so the hand stitching will take me a while!  My hope is to have it finished in time for our guild's quilt show.  I'll let you know who eventually wins the war over this quilt ... Teacup ... or ... me.  Want to make a wager? ;-)

Don't you just love it when things add up together in a way you never could have imagined?  Just look at the math... 
   Twenty plus years of floral remnants 
+ a Terry Atkinson quilt design 
+ vacation to visit daughter 
+ Major League Baseball Game/ Quilt Event 
+ sit by husband of new QBee 
+ you and new QBee meet "Quilt Rock Star"
+ new QBee quilts your scrap quilt

Gosh ... I'm always amazed at where my dillydally lifestyle will lead ... I'm grateful ...


Sunday, September 12, 2010

Valdez Quilt Festival - Day 2 & 3

Friday (Day 2), of the festival was a long one ... classes began at 9:00 am and we left at 11:30 pm ... yes ... long, but wonderful! 
Sheilah Crum (Instructor), QBees Valerie, Terry, Julie and Barb
Four of the QBees and I spent the morning and afternoon in a Machine Quilting class taught by Sheilah Crum.  Sheilah was so down to earth ... made everyone feel comfortable ... her style of teaching really helped us all face our fear and anxiety ... in order to give machine quilting a try.  She demonstrated for us the basic principles of design behind all kinds of quilting motifs.  I really found that to be valuable.  When I can break a design down into simple steps, it really helps.  
This is the third machine quilting class I've taken in the last 15 years, and it is not a skill that comes easily for me.  I have no intention of quilting large projects, but I like knowing enough to quilt my own table tops and small wall quilts.  Sheilah did a great job of bringing out the best there was in each of us ... I got a serious case of the giggles ... it was pretty obvious that my best wasn't very much!  ;-)  We had a ton of fun and felt comfortable expressing our humor!

Classes ended at 4:00 pm and the Mystery Quilt Sew-A-Thon began at 5:30!  I think I overheard one of the organizers say that 94 quilters elected to participate!  The temporary walls were removed and we took up the entire "Ballroom" space!
QBees Barb and Lila
A quilter in Valdez created the pattern ... I think her name was Trudy, sorry I don't have her last name ... there were a total of 12 steps. 
QBees Julie and Terry
It was well designed ... there was no way to guess what we were making!  Love it!
Anchorage QBees Cyndi, Kathy and Terry
My sewing table mate ... QBee Valerie!
The organizers hosted a sandwich, salad and dessert bar through out the entire evening!  People could snack, visit and sew at their own pace!  Ninety-four quilters and no two alike!  Love it!

Above, are two optional layouts for the blocks that are made in this mystery!  That just increases the fun!  Some of the quilters did finish ... we, Cordovan QBees dillydallied ... it was just too fun ... I love it!

We giggled into the wee hours of the morning, so 9:00 am class Saturday (Day 3) morning came quickly!  Four of us had to leave on the ferry that afternoon, so we checked out of the hotel before classes began.  
QBee Julie and I took a class called Triple T: Tips, Tricks and Techniques taught by Lisa Moore.  Lisa is from Sitka, Alaska and is a rising "Quilt Rock Star".  After taking her class, she deserves to have rock star status! 
I had to snag this photo from her website because we had to leave class early on Saturday to catch the ferry for our return to Cordova.  I don't ask instructors to allow pictures during class to protect their copyright stuff ... and usually take one at the end ... but we weren't there at the end. :-(   I'll be honest ... I hated leaving her class early ... she was such a wealth of information ... and so willingly shared it!  If I ever have a chance to take classes from her again, I will!  And I highly recommend you do to!  She is incredible! 
It was hard to leave the festival early ... they had a show and tell / dessert event Saturday evening and a full day of classes on Sunday.  You know me ... I hate missing out!  ;-)  But it would have meant missing another day of work on Monday.  We left sunny Valdez ...
... tired, but very happy ...
... and found ourselves blanketed yet again in fog ... no chance of scenic pictures again ...
... but as we came around the last island before arriving in Cordova, we left the fog behind.  This was the view from my front deck when I got home ... it was a lovely way to end a remarkable trip!

The quilters in Valdez host this statewide festival every two years.  I can only imagine the amount of work involved!  I am so grateful for their efforts and look forward to 2012!

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Quilt Festival - Day 1

I spent the first day of the Valdez Quilt festival inspired by this quilt and it's designer ... Becky Goldsmith of Piece O' Cake fame!
We learned hand applique' skills from one of the quilt world's biggest rock stars!  It was a lot to soak up in only a day, but the techniques taught actually make me excited to attempt some projects that I've admiring from a distance.
Becky shared many of her quilts with us ...
... she has such a sense of color and line ...
... even the backs of her quilts are works of art!
QBees Julie, Valerie and Barb were in the class as well.  We all learned so much and are so grateful for the skills Becky taught us ... every minute was well spent!
Tonight, a dinner was held at the local Elk's Lodge for the Festival participants ... a chance to mingle with new found friends ...
... here are our new Anchorage QBees ...
... and the Cordova QBee Crew ... catching up with one another and what we learned!  So much fun ... lots of giggles!
I thought I'd end this post with this photo of Becky and one of her quilts ... the message is well said ...
Live well and be happy!

Valdez Quilt Festival!

Two years ago, a few QBees and I attended a quilt festival hosted by our neighboring quilters in Valdez, Alaska. 
Here we are taking a pre-conference Columbia Glacier Cruise.  It was the first time any of us had ever met and taken classes from "Quilt Rock Stars"!  We really enjoyed learning new skills from Judy Neimeyer and Jackie Robinson ... it was so exciting!

The Valdez quilters host this four day conference, The Valdez Quilt Festival, bi-annually ... so yesterday ...
QBees Lila and Valerie
... we traveled by ferry ...
QBees Julie and Barb
... giggling ... chatting ... knitting ...
QBee Terry
... and relaxing our way across Prince William Sound.  Traveling to Valdez on the fast ferry takes only three hours ...
... and usually includes spectacular views ... this was our view yesterday ... ;-) ... gotta love this Alaskan weather!
We met three other quilters on the ferry ... they were from Anchorage ... had traveled by ferry to Cordova the day before and spent Tuesday night there.  Gosh, we wish we had known ... we would have shown them some real Cordovan hospitality!
 They were busy working on embroidery projects ... and enjoying the same scenic view.  ;-)
We arrived in Valdez around 11:00 am ... it was too early to check into the hotel ... we went and had lunch ... then made our way to the local quilt shop ... 
... The Calico Whale ...
... owned by Shelly ...
... and her sidekick, Sweetie, who is responsible for customer service.  Sweetie makes sure that all customers feel welcome and relaxed!  She is well named ... and quite a character.  I am convinced that Shelly wouldn't be able to manage without Sweetie! ;-)
The Calico Whale had samples ...
... inspiring displays ...
... lovely fabric ...
... beautiful yarn ...
... and a comfortable spot to sit while waiting in line to purchase new treasures!  It was fun to run into our new quilting friends from Anchorage! Yep we spent a couple of very enjoyable hours at the Calico Whale ... noooo ... we are not going to discuss how many $ we spent!  ;-)
The QBees and I are very excited to begin our classes this morning!  Learning from Quilt Rock Stars ... discovering new quilting techniques ... making new friends!  Yep ... I love my dillydally life!