Friday, August 31, 2012

Such Kindness!

Today this beautiful handmade pincushion arrived in the mail.  My heart melted when I held it in my hands.  It is lovely.  It came from blogger friend, Cathy.  Her mother did the tatting and she made the pincushion...I am sew humbled...and sew touched.  I am overwhelmed by such a thoughtful gesture of kindness...I will treasure it always...I am sew grateful.

Do what you love.  Be kind.  Do dillydally!
Mrs. DillyDally

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

MIA or AWOL ... Hmmmm?

Yep, I can't decide if I've been MIA (missing in action) or AWOL (absent with out leave) here in blogland?  What I can tell you is that it has been very busy here in dillydallydom!
Photo from Google Images
I flew home to Alaska from Minneapolis on Saturday, August 18th.
Photo from Google Images
And guess what?  The very next day (Sunday, 8/19) Sister DillyDally also arrived in Cordova!
Sister DillyDally with Peder in Minneapolis
Between my time in Minnesota and her time in Alaska ... I was able to spend over 3 weeks with my daughter!
Brother and Sister DillyDally making pickled salmon!
And ... the bonus was having both of our adult children home at the same time!  Heaven on earth!
Picture from Google Images
Also ... on top of all that ... school started on Monday (8/20) ... that means that I went back to work!  Yep ... can it get any better or busier!  It was crazy in a very wonderful way!

The week was packed with all the Alaskan lifestyle activities we've always enjoyed.  We picked berries ...
A few remaining Salmon Berries
Nagoon berries
We caught, preserved and ate salmon ...
Brother is the chief fisherman in this family!
A beautiful day on the Eyak River!
Great catch!
Silver salmon fresh from the smoker.
Brother DillyDally has really taken to the task of preserving salmon ... pickling and smoking it ... yep, he is Alaskan through and through.  He has been adventurous with trying different seasonings ... all of them delicious.
Our cabin on the Eyak River
It was wonderful to share this time together as a family ... enjoying the lifestyle we love.

Do what you love.  Go MIA or AWOL.  Do dillydally!
Mrs. DillyDally 

Saturday, August 18, 2012

Colorz for Quilts - August 3rd

Now that I am nearly home ... spent the night in Anchorage ... I need to get serious about catching up on my blogging!  I really want to share the terrific quilt shops I visited while in Minnesota.
While traveling to Bemidji from Minneapolis, I always stop by Colorz for Quilts in Brainerd!  
It was the first day of the statewide shop hop ... so it was the first time I had seen the fabrics live!  

This shop does a great job each year!  Their kits were flying off the shelves!
This shop always has a terrific collection of batiks and beautiful samples!  Love the Atkinson table topper made with pastel batiks!
Great ideas for using novelty prints!
Samples everywhere!  
This preprinted panel application rocks!  Absolutely stunning!  A stop here is always a great way to break up the long drive up north.  I always leave Colorz for Quilts inspired and refreshed!  

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Abduction by the Sassy Stitchers!

One week ago today ... on Wednesday, August 8th ... I broke all personal safety rules!
1.  I accepted emails from strangers...who deliberately do not use their real names.
2.  I answered those emails from complete strangers.
3.  Agreed to meet them privately.
4.  Got into their vehicle without any resistance on my part.
5.  Rode around with them for 12 hours in unfamiliar territory.

Here are the partners in crime ... ;-) ... Silly, Sally, Susie and Sami!  Sinister looking aren't they?  The one in dark glasses ... she was the driver!  Of course! ;-)

Don't be fooled by their innocent faces ... they cornered me in the bathroom at Cabela's!  I remember telling my children never to go into a public restroom alone! ;-) It was four to one ... what could I do!
Their criminal behavior began a year ago ... you can read about it here!  And again here!  They added so much to the fun we Alaska QBees had on the shop hop last summer!  Such kindness!
We had fun calling it a "Quilt Abduction" all day, but the truth is they treated me like a star!  We visited six quilt shops!  How awesome is that?  Such fun and quilt inspiration...all in one day!  I will post about the shops later!
During lunch they showered me with gifts ... yep, I was overwhelmed by such kindness!  A handmade casserole cover for our QBee potlucks ... a pincushion made with "Dilly Dally" fabric ... a quilting mallet ... fabric "Deli Squares" ... treats for Flicka and Mr. DD ... charm square pack of "Sassy" fabric ... and a quilt themed note pad with this written on it:
May your day be fun!
Running around with...
Sassy new QBee friends!

Doing what you sew enjoy...
In the Minnesota countryside.
Loving all the sights,
Laughing and envisioning...
Yards of fabric completed into projects.
Did you ever imagine..
Any of this could be when you...
Launched a blog about...
Living in Cordova, Alaska?
You and your dillydally ways!

Honestly, I could hardly choke out the words ... thank you!  Such kindness!  Little did I know...they had another surprise for me near the end of the day!  A private quilt show!  Oh ... how I loved seeing their projects!
Susie captured the charm of Dick and Jane in her quilt.  I love how she pieced the backing!
This quilt is a tribute to her family's love for the movie, The Wizard of Oz.  It is lovely!
Sally shared this Minnesota themed wall quilt made with shop hop fabric.  Love the fussy cutting combined with the single irish chain!  Beautiful!
Oh ... be still my heart!  All my favorites ... stars ... chains ... 30's prints ... on white!  Lovely in every way!
Love ... love ... love!  And ... oh ... how this quilt matches Sami's personality!  Too fun!
She is working on this wall quilt to hang in a grandchild's room!  Sew stinkin' cute!
Silly had just finished this top for a grandson's birthday!  Yummy!
I took a close up to show that it really is a monochromatic scrap quilt ... using all shades, tints and tones of green!  What a lucky little boy! ;-)  
She really enjoys hand sewing ... her wool applique' workmanship is amazing!
This sweet nine patch ...
...was made all the sweeter with the addition of Silly's hand quilting!  I love how her use of grey intensifies the red and gold.
A 1930's miniature fan quilt!
Yep...there goes my heart again!  Look at how the hand quilting adds to it!  Using black between the pedals on the fan was very typical in the 30's.  Wonderful workmanship!
Wowser!  Look!  There are touches of detail every where on this quilt!
Love the traditional flavor of this wall quilt!
Hand applique' ... hand embroidery ... hand quilting!  Made hand!
All four of these women are very skilled and talented quilters.  It was so fun to learn about their involvement in multiple quilt groups/guilds.  They belong to a large guild that has two national level teachers every year!  Wow!  They participate in all kinds of classes and retreats!
Like the QBees back home, these women know how to entertain themselves and believe in having fun!  Their friendship was clearly communicated through humor and concern for one another and others.  I was also impressed with the many ways they use quilting to charitably serve others.  
It is so humbling to think that these four amazing women put their lives on hold and invited me to spend the day with them.  They shared their talent and friendship ... gave up time from their careers and family ... and planned and prepared a day of fun for me.  There is no way to adequately thank them.  I am so touched ... overwhelmed ... grateful ... and undeserving.  We began the day complete strangers and in twelve hours they felt like lifelong friends ... thank you Sassy QBees ... I will hold the memories of our day together close to my heart forever!  It was a wonderful dillydally day!

Do what you love.  Share your kindness.  Do dillydally!
Mrs. DillyDally

Monday, August 13, 2012

Meet the Metro QBees!

In the five years since developing and implementing the dillydally lifestyle the most amazing people have entered my life!  On August 7th I spent the day with two wonderful women!
Meet the Metro QBees Randi and Mary Ellen!  I met them two years ago...
...Sister DillyDally and I participated in a quilt event hosted by Rosebud's Cottage held at a Minnesota Twins game!  You can read about it here!  Randi's husband was unfortunate to have ended up sitting next to me that evening.  It was my very first major league baseball game!  I know I drove him crazy with all my silly questions, but that is how I met both Randi and Mary Ellen!  Poor man, there he was trying to watch the game.
Last summer they met the AK QBees and I for lunch!  They even prepared beautiful gift bags for each of us.  They really made our trip extra special ... you can read about it here!

Sister DillyDally had to leave town on a business trip last week, Randi and Mary Ellen invited me to spend a day with them ... it was perfect timing ... they picked me up Tuesday morning and we dillydallied all day long!

We visited three shops in the metro area ... I will blog about each one eventually.  My internet access during this trip has been limited!  We had such fun shopping and exploring the shops together ... I love seeing things through the eyes of others ... it really broadens my view and heightens the inspiration!
They took me to the Taste of Scandinavia Bakery and Cafe for lunch!  I know ... how perfect is that!
Here is a photo of one section of the menu!  Too fun!
I had a Finnish Pastie with a side of lefse!  Yummy!
For dessert we share a generous piece of the cake on the left ... to die for dillydally delicious!
We visited Designer Roseann Kermes in her studio!  As always ... it was inspiring to spend time with Roseann.  She is always so generous with her time and talent!  It is also a thrill to see the things she is working on ... of course we are sworn to secrecy!  I consistently leave my visits with Roseann inspired and empowered!

The whole day was lovely, but the highlights were when both Randi and Mary Ellen invited me to their homes!
We went to Mary Ellen's first.  It was so nice to meet her husband and to see her quilts.
This hand appliqued quilt was not made by Mary Ellen, but has a very interesting back story.  A history that teaches all of us quilters an important lesson ... a story that deserves it's own post.  Stay tuned ... sorry to be a tease!
Little did I know ... Mary Ellen has an extensive collection of antique toy sewing machines!
Wow!  I could have spent hours looking at it all!
What treasure!
Her collections were displayed beautifully!
What fun!
I could have spent days looking through all the treasure she had on display!  I have not even posted all the pictures I took of her collections.  Collecting is something that she and her husband enjoy together!  What fun!  Plus...everything is displayed beautifully!  I love how collecting sewing toys are an avenue by which she and her husband can find a common interest!  How cool is that?
Antique scrap quilt hanging in Mary Ellen's living room!
I have mentioned on earlier posts that Randi is a professional long arm quilter.  A lot of her work in published in quilt magazines!  We ended our day together by visiting her home and studio! she is...this is where the magic happens!
It was a thrill to see how Randi has organized her creative space.
And to see the projects she has made.
Here is a wall quilt that she designed to "tell" her story.  Not only was it beautiful, but inspiring to hear Randi's journey into quilting and her business, Jubilee Quilting!
Randi wanted the AK QBees to see that she actually uses and treasures the notebook that we gave her last summer!  Too cool!
Quilts hanging in Randi's home.
It was such a lovely day ... in every possible way!  This was only the third time I had met these two wonderful women ... how fortunate I am to have them in my life.  When creating my dillydally lifestyle changes five years ago ... one of the most important decisions I made was to minimize relationships that were negative and to invest in those that were positive.  It has been life changing!  I relate it to cleaning out a closet ... it has created room for positive people like Mary Ellen and Randi to enter my life!  I am so grateful for the day we spent together ... but mostly for their friendship!

Do what you love.  Be a positive force for others.  Do dillydally!
Mrs. DillyDally