Tuesday, October 30, 2007

A Day at the Dentist

No pictures today, Just a tale about the dentist visit.

Sat. I made BLT's for dinner and we like our bacon crisp, who doesn't. Well I guess it was too crisp for my husbands teeth. He broke one of his eye teeth off which made him look like a natural for Halloween. Awful.

So the first thing Monday morning he called our dentist and got an appointment for noon today. We were both thinking of all the different sequences that could happen. Is it going to be another visit to the oral surgeon to have it pulled.? Or maybe an addition to the small plate he has which would mean around $1,000 bill. We don't have dental insurance and Medicare doesn't pay for that. Maybe a cap?

So the first thing we meet up with is one of his former students. She had her daughter's in for checkups. No school today. He retired almost 30 years ago with 30 years teaching Chemistry and Biology at the same school. Yes, she recognized him and started talking. Seems he also taught her Mother. This happens all the time.

When he finally got back and Brenda, the dentist, That was to young to have had him, but her sister did . Proceeded to inspect his tooth. I didn't stay in. But a half hour later he was finished. and they called me to come get him. He uses a wheel chair as he only walks a little around the house and with a walker. Nothing more was said but he asked the assistant what he could eat. She said anything but be careful with an apple. Cut it up. How did she know that he has an apple every
afternoon? I peel it and so today it was cut into slices.

Well, he looked at me and said "See" opening his mouth and a new tooth.
Not a cap but she made him a new tooth. Drilled and put in two posts and with some new kind of material made him a new one. He said it didn't even hurt. I said there must not be any nerves left in it. but at least the roots are good.
Amazing what they can do now. and only $125. She does give us a Senior discount.

So home we came. Wouldn't it be nice that this happened every time you went to the dentist.?

Sunday, October 28, 2007

Trees on the Table Challenge

. Marcie was so nice to give us this pattern for free, and then with Kim's challenge, I just had to make it. But-- didn't think it would take quite so long. But then If I'd read the instructions first. Like you are suppose to. Oh, I've been quilting and sewing long enough to know how to put this simple little quilt together.

This is the inside design I did. I've used all Thimbleberries fabric and wanted to make the candy stripe next border.

But first the problem I had, in case someone else doesn't read the instructions. I made the center pinwheel and since Marcie hadn't said HOW to construct this I had to think about about sewing these pieces together. I knew I had made some blocks at one time that had a center piece that had to be partially sewn then continue. See I did it the hard way. Sewing it together then was a breeze.

Well, it did take a while to make a template to cut the trees and side pieces out. Since I don't have one of those fancy things Marcie said she used.

But then the HST for the stripes. I don't use thangles either but cut my blocks a little bigger and then square them up. Got them all made last night and about half of them squared. Thought I really would beat Kim in making this as she had to go get more fabric, but this morning she said she was up late. Yah, finished hers. But she didn't do all those HST.

But love it and another one wouldn't take near as long

So here's my finished topper. I felt it needed another border so put the small pinwheels in it.

Now back to making log cabins. They are so additive.

Saturday, October 27, 2007

Quilting Class

Yesterday morning I set off early,8 am for Gaithersburg and the beginners quilting class. Didn't take any longer than I expected but left an hour earlier just in case there was an accident and holdup on Rt. 270, the main corridor to Wash. DC. At 5am till 8 this is a parking lot. Why these people want to live in the suburbs and drive 1 1/2 to 2 hours to work every day is beyond me.

So arrived finally , after getting on the wrong road. to find the shop doesn't open till 10 am. the time the class was to begin. Fortunately I had taken my book with me just in case.

About quarter til 10 the gal came and opened up so after another lady went in with a machine I got out in a little rain, but since I parked right in front of the shop. It was an easy in-out. Got my machine unpacked and set up. The teacher came and was almost as old as I, so figured she would be good. There were 5 of us in the class. Most had never done any machine quilting. One hadn't even taken a class on how to use her Bernina.

We were given a few instructions and shown some quilts with the types of quilting we were going to learn how to do.
This is the teacher talking after the class was almost over. I shyly got my camera out and snapped this one. This is my Juki with the sample practice in the machine.

This shows the 5 steps she had us do.
First we copied a design in the middle. Then folded the square and creased the 4 squares.

In the upper left corner we did meandering which doesn't show up, thank goodness but I think with some more practice I might get the hang.

Then we did echo in the opposite corner. If you can see. I didn't follow instructions and only went to half of the square. Shame on me. but then filled in the other half.
Then we did cross hatching in the upper right corner and in the lower left it was suppose to be double needle. But my Jukie doesn't have the foot for zig-zag so I had marked the double lines to follow using only the plain quilting foot.

She gave us several good pointers. One to have your chair high enough to look down on your machine. Hasn't been. I put another chair on top of one and that was so much better.

Then she recommended using the # 70 quilting needles. Finer for better quilting. I had # 90 but think they work better for the heavier quilting I'm doing now on the flannel quilt.

She explained a little about the batting. Was surprised she uses the poly for small quilts , like baby ones and ones you want puffy.

It was good to have some one on one teaching. My DH asked it it was worth it. Sure , when I've not had any except the cyber teaching from Kim. Which has been great. Never thought I would give in and do machine quilting. but it is so much better for quilts to give away like for my grandchildren to take off to college.

I've made quilts for all 6 of my grandchildren which they will get when they get married or out on their own. But have also made them ones for their bed growing up . and these have been hand quilted.

Now the oldest that is in his last year at college. Had a quilt we made with fish and used a whole lot of Old fabrics and he had that on his bed until he left for college. It started to wear. Some of those old, 40-50s fabrics just couldn't make it.
Last year I gave him one that I had machine quilted , for college. As I had given the two girls each one the year before for the college quilts. Well, my DD had asked him if he was using it. No, he was afraid of ruining it. I told him he was to use it .That was what it was for. That he would have another big one when he married. Don't know if he has .

So this morning I got my machine set back up and started to quilt the flannel one for my DS's family for Christmas. I Have shown it in an earlier blog . Am only going diagonally through the big blocks so nothing hard about it. I started to use the walking foot since it was flannel but for some reason it keep catching. So changed to the regular foot and it was working good.

What a learning progress this is. But never to old to learn something new.

I think our rain is finally coming to an end. But boy did we need it.

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Log Cabin Update

I've been having so much fun with these log cabin blocks. They are additive. Once you get the strips cut and organized in order, they go fast.

Kim wanted to see what I had done a couple days ago so this is the picture I sent her. So neat to be able to put them in order on the wall.

Now I have enough for that whole first row. which includes another house and two more blocks.

It's so much fun to see the pattern come together.

We have finally gotten our rain and the last couple days have been dreary and good for sitting and sewing.

Tomorrow, I'm going down to a Gaithersburg Quilt shop and have a machine quilting lesson. 3 hours. Am hoping to learn how to meander and free motion a little better. I've never had a lesson . Only what I can get over the Internet from Kim answering questions. She also sent me Harriet Hargrave's "Heirloom Machine quilting" I'll never get there but it was a big help.

I just hope it doesn't rain so much that 270 going down doesn't get loaded up with accidents. I'm leaving in plenty of time.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

The World is my Oyster!

A couple weeks ago when I mentioned that I was fixing fried oysters when my daughter came up, I had a lot of comments and questions from the Hollow.

Saturday DH asked some friends of ours to come over for Sunday dinner of fried oysters, because they both like them. He figures any way to get me to fix oysters when they are in season.

So I thought I would try to take some pictures of the process and make some of you hungry.
Here they are all ready to cook. I dip them in egg and then roll them in ground up crackers. They need to sit a little so the cracker gets a little damp and will stick good to the oyster.

Then I fry them quick in a hot skillet. In Canola oil. See how bubbly they are. Turn them once and take them out

onto a paper towel. This was the first batch. They would look better on a plate with a big pile of potato salad and slice of cranberry sauce. With ketchup on the oysters.

Hungry yet? I am. These of course are Chesapeake Bay oysters.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

A Bug Tale

Yesterday was a beautiful day here in Western Maryland, Warm but not to hot to do a little work in the yard. We have 3 huge Oaks in our very small front yard which slopes down from the road. It has a ditch in the middle to carry the water away from the house.

I have plants along the front of the house and have a soaker hose to keep them watered. Well, walking in this little area has been hard because of all the acorns and some leaves so far. So I decided to rake them all up. Got a good pile and a box to put them in. I keep a pair of garden gloves in the kitchen window sill under the carport. So got them and started to put my hands in and OOPS there was something in all the fingers.

Shook them out and OH. Stink bugs.
Do any of you have these horrible bugs? We have had an on slot of them this fall. They get in the house and fly around and settle on a lamp or the back of a chair. My dh hates to see them and of course calls for me to get them off and out.

If you smash them they stink. So I usually throw them outside.

Anyway I shook the gloves and thought I had them all, Nope. So I put the gloves back on the window sill and let them have a nice warm home.

These bugs are about the size of a nickle and have about 6-8 legs. They make a funny noise when flying. Don't hurt you but they are BUGS.

I just used my hands to get the acorns up. Job done.

Sunday, October 21, 2007

Latest Quilting Project

This is a Quilt made entirely from Feedsacks, including the backing. I saw it finished at the Feedsack convention in Lancaster, Pa. Probably about 1997. It was published in Traditional Quilting issue #42 in 1996.
Since I had been collecting feedsacks for several years, I figured this was a perfect quilt to make .

It is all hand pieced mostly on our trips to Colorado to visit with our son and family. Those are long stretches along Rt. 70 from Maryland.

I had put the blocks up when we stopped going out because of my husbands health. When I got them out and put them up on the board to see how many more I needed, I saw if had enough finished so started to sew them together.
I used about 4 full sacks for the backing and some pieces. All in blues.

I finally got it basted and had started to quilt it when I needed to get the BOM quilted for the Home Care nurse. Pictures and that story are in earlier blogs. This is before I had it basted.

There are no two prints alike, Except the green leaves. The background is all flour sacks so some are a little different shade.
Here it is in my hoop, I don't know if you can see the quilting or not. I've just did 1/4 inside the flower pieces. This is made of only one template. Just color placement.
I couldn't decide how to quilt the background or white pieces. Needed some way to bring the flower out. So started to Echo quilt around it.
I think you can see in the upper right the block is finished. The lower one is in progress. I use 1/4 in. tape to go around the outside and also the flower pieces. I just can't judge a good 1/4 inch.

Another thing that makes this harder to work on is the thickness of some places. With the piecing of the backing and then Feedsack fabric is not the finest that there is.

This will probably take several months to finish so it'll be back when done.

Thanks Kim for putting up with me.
She didn't leave any little messages for me today. Just a lot of dots. . . .

Friday, October 19, 2007

Kim is REALLY a Wonderful Person

I really like my friend Kim better than trees, but here's a photo of a tree anyway

OK, I've created a monster. I hope you realize that the above was in this post before I started: Since Kim is being such a great gal to upload these pictures for me, I just have to leave her comments.
This is the view from my drive across the road. These trees changed so quick that I just had to take another picture to show you.

Now this morning it is FINALLY raining a little but suppose to get a big storm this afternoon so most likely the trees will loose a lot of leaves and the color will be gone.
But Oh!! do we need this rain

Here's the log cabin block. Not an easy one to make. Sure glad there are only nine of them. I just might go ahead and make the rest of them first while I have the pieces all sorted .

Now more of my friends comments as she put this picture in here

Oh, and here's some brown stuff in a pan. It might be an apple crisp or something like that, but I'm not really sure.

I am not a cook, Really would love to have someone to do the cooking. but

Wed. at TB club the owner of the quiltshop usually has some goodies for us. It didn't look like this but almost. Her's was apple crisp, as Kim suggested but when she said it was made in the microwave in about 10 min. I thought , Gee,I bet that would be good using all those pears I'd bought that were really sweet and juicy but DH only ate one. I'd been eating them every day but they really needed to be eaten.

So I had written the recipe down. It came out of her Microwave cookbook . Simple. Yes, I used the pears instead of apples. Here's the recipe. Try it. You'll like it.
I didn't have that many pears so cut back on the ingredients

Apple Crisp

6 c. Apples peeled cut into pieces
3/4 c. brown sugar - stirred into apples and put in a shallow pan


1/3 c. brown sugar
1/2 c. flour
1/3 c. quick cooking Quaker Oats
1/4 c. butter - melted
1/2 t. cinnamon

Sprinkle over apples

Microwave for 10-12 min. Yumm

And did I mention what a brilliant blog writer Kim is?

Had to leave this last comment. LOL
Just go read her blog. I don't have the links. Don't know how to do that.

Thursday, October 18, 2007

From Trees to Log Cabins

Kim keeps coming up with these neat titles so am leaving what she put.

All log cabins begin with trees,

This was my view yesterday afternoon as I drove up to my home, in the background. This is the tree that I had pictured yesterday from the carport. It is a Red Oak I think . most of the oaks don't turn this bright an orange.

Like Kim says all log cabins start from trees. We do have a log cabin down the road a ways. New one with a Red Roof.

This is the first block I finished last night.

I wonderend about putting that blue in the lights. It really is a medium , I guess, but looked back in the book at her picture and she has several of different med. prints, etc. which makes it interesting.

I also did my good deed for the day.
We had some visitors this morning. a friend of my husband and his wife. His wife has just gotten out of the house from having colon cancer surgery. They removed it but it has spread to the lymph nodes and the only treatment is Chemo. Which she says she does not want. She will just go when her time comes.

I had asked DH before they got there if she liked Pink. So I asked her and showed her the quilt I just finished. She loved it and I told her it was her comfort quilt when she got blue to wrap up and keep warm.

Makes one feel so good. We hadn't been able to get out to she her in her recovery but he has been faithful to come down and visit with DH who doesn't get out except to the Doctors offices.

Yesterday was a nice day out. I did buy one of the new TB Cover Story Panels of two children kneeling saying their prayers. Will quilt this up for my newest Great,great niece Simile.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Stripping for Fall

Fall is here . As I was getting supper together last night this was what I saw out the window. Grabbed my camera and went out on the carport and got this.

This is the view looking down our road. If you notice the two tall stumps, that is because when we had those dead trees cut down, my husband wanted the trunks left for the woodpeckers. I know it looks funny. But we love the birds.

OH, today is the 17th and my sons birthday. He probably doesn't read this but Happy Birthday, George. He lives in Colorado on the top of a mountain. What a view

And look at all these fabrics! Yep this is the start of my log cabin quilt that I showed the pattern to you yesterday.

Well this is the small container that I got several months ago when Patty was after us to organize our scraps. I have them stacked in different sizes in these small drawers. When I get one I don't want to use I stick it in. So this was easy to get out the first stack of 1 1/2 in and 2 in strips and start cutting. Judy Martin has the sizes all put down so they can be cut and ready to sew.

This is the smaller ones. I have little papers on them with the letter and size.

This is the longer ones. Didn't have room on the small cutting board for all of them.

I stood and cut these strips most of the day yesterday and last night my feet burned so bad I couldn't go to sleep. Had to get up and get them on my tile floor that is colder so they would stop it.

Does anyone in the group have neuropathy? Normally it is one of the things that goes along with Diabetes. But I don't have Diabetes. So why do I have it. ? Don't know. It's when the nerves in your feet get tired, I'd say. I do have a good medication. But when I wear shoes and socks for several hours they start to burn. So I go barefooted most of the time. Except outside.

That's enough of my problems. Not like Kim with a sore toe. and her weekly pulling of chin hairs etc.

Hopefully I'll have a little progress with at least one block made. Want to try that house block also as it will be made differenatly than the regular log cabin. Oh did you notice how many logs are in this block? 5 on each side and they finish to 3/4 of an inch. Hope my sewing is OK. Might have to check my 1/4 in. seam like she says.
Good bye!

One Done, another to Start

Remember this Mini I showed a while back? I got it quilted in just two days. by machine of course.

Now dear Patty from the Hollow told us about a new book on Log cabins, that Judy Martin had coming out. Course she had to send the link etc. and I fell in love with this pattern . So unusual with the cabins in some of the blocks. So I ordered the book

Then found out she uses 1 1/4 in. strips. EEK I started to cut them out today. More about that later.

Isn't this cute. I have so many strips of all sizes that I have tried to put together so figured this would be easy.

I need another project or quilt don't I?

Have a busy day in town tomorrow. Wed. is my day to go to the Beauty Parlor. My one thing I do for myself, except quilting of course. But then I have TB Club in the afternoon so guess what ? I get to go to the quilt shop. Do have to get some batting for the flannel quilt I have ready to pin. Well, when I get the batting.

More about the Log cabin tomorrow.

How did she know?
Say goodnight, Eileen! LOL!

Monday, October 15, 2007

Pumpkin Patch

Isn't this a cute family portrait? I got it with a few others a couple days ago from My great niece Briana in Castle Rock, Co. They went to one of the ranches to get pumpkins.

This is such an amazing family. The baby is just about 2 mo. old and is name Samile. Isn't that different.

The amazing thing is Briana is home schooling the children. The oldest girl, Soquel, is about 9 and she started her out quite young. Plays the violin and so does the oldest boy
Squire, started learning I think as soon as he could talk. He is about 6 now. Then the younger boy , Sequoia, is 2. So she has her hands full. Her Husband is a music teacher in elementary charter school. Also teaches privately.

She's the one I quilted a quilt for this spring. She had taken about 5 years to put it together. I'll see if I can get a picture of it on her bed that she sent me. Seems I lost it last week when I got an upgrade and lost my photos.

I will have a picture to show tomorrow of the little mini that I just quilted the last couple days. Need to get the binding finished.

Then I received the flannel backing that I ordered to put on my DS family throw. So that has to be cut and pieced , pinned and have to check if I have batting big enough. I have the TB club on Wed. so will be at the quilt shop and get a discount on club day.

Now back to the binding.

. . . .

Saturday, October 13, 2007

Latest Project

Here's one of my UFO tops from my basket. All machine quilted and bound.

I've been thinking and thinking when I made this. I need Marcie's memory sponge.
Then it just dawned on me that it was probably a round robin I did in a small group about 4 years ago and that was as far as I got

Here's a closeup of one corner. I don't know if you can see the quilting or not. Lots of free motion following a template of course. Except in the border where I outlined the flowers. that's what took time.

More about the hotel in Boonsboro. I noticed a Walking tour guide at the town hall which is next to the library and it has lots of information in it.
The hotel was #1 on the list and was called Eagle Hotel erected about 1796. Says the first stone building in Boonsboro.

Yes, It was named for the Boones but not Daniel. Probably a relative, They are buried in a cemetery behind the first church.

Now the other building across the street was the U.S.Hotel built in 1811. It was Dr.s offices for many years.

That's all of the history lesson for today.

Fall has really arrived. I had to turn on the heat. It was down to 40 last night and got clear up to 60 but windy. But no rain. Lets do a rain dance. !!!

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Nora Roberts New Project.

Yesterday I had to go down to the Library so took my camera to get some pictures of a restoration work going on in the center of town.

Boonsboro is a very small town. Maybe 8,000 but growing. Very historic sitting right along the old National highway. The little flags they have on the light posts say 1792. So this is about the first hotel in the center of town. There is also a large Stone House on the top of South Mountain that was a days journey from one to the other,in wagons of course.

This hotel has never been in operation as long as I've been here. That's 50 years. There was an antique shop in it I think years ago. But then it really started going to pot. The pigeons took over the top floor. There was even a tree growing out one of the windows.

Well then came Nora Roberts to the rescue, I'm sure you have all heard of her, maybe read her books. She lives outside of town but her husband has a Book store in town.

I came the back way as I wanted a view of the back of it as they are working.

For two or three weeks they had dumpsters in there cleaning out. Took some added on stuff out of this back. Here's a closer picture. One brick layer up there patching.

What a wonderful court yard this would make.
She is planning on restoring it and having the rooms set up with antiques. The worker said a Bed and Breakfast. But she has book signings about every couple months and brings in other authors as well and I imagine she would like a nice place for them to stay.

Then I walked up toward the square. Took this picture of the house diagonally across the street which she also bought at auction. It was apartments last but originally a large mansion. Her son is going to have a Pizza Parlor in it . They are almost finished with fixing it up. They painted it those colors.

The stone wall here on the right is the first section of the hotel. I imagine the back part was added later.
I went across the street and took this next picture of the front of the hotel

Boonsboro has one block of downtown. This next one was from in front of the Pizza house

You can get a view of the front and side here. Pretty hard not to get come cars going though.

I walked down past the post office and got this view of the back . It is quite a large building. Don't know if he'll rent out the top or not.
Now back down main street a bit and got this shot from across the street of the Bookstore

They really have three different houses here. The one in the center with the blue porch was the first one. Then they bought the little one on the left. Then expanding they got the one on the right which when we first came here was a hardware store.

When they have book signings the people are lined up clear up the street and no place to park. Nice for this little town.

I hope to get pictures as she gets more done.

So maybe you need to go buy her latest book so she has enough money to finish this. LOL
. . . . .

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Latest Project

Here's a flannel quilt top I've been working on. Started out with a package of charms and a bunch of leftover strips from the same collection. Bet I've had them well over 5 years.

After seeing the TB Christmas Street Flannel with the snow and pines, I just had to make this up for my son and family. Since they live in the pines in Co. So have ordered the fabric for the backing. Will be nice for them to cozy up with in the living room. They use my GS's twin size quilt now. He had a big double bed instead of the bunk beds that I made the quilts for.

This is not finished here. The borders are only stuck on the board. I have since changed it a bit and have all but the outside narrow border on now

Soon I'll be able to add it to my HUGE basket full of UFOs:

This was Kim's addition. It will not go into this basket. Since I want to get it quilted for Christmas

Kim was the one that suggested I roll up the completed tops and put them in a basket. Little did she know I had a Longaberger clothes basket that I had no place to use in this house so it fits nicely on the hearth and is overflowing with tops. Notice there is also one sticking out of a large vase behind it.

All the quilts on the rack are quilted. . The one is an antique appliqued. Have another quilt rack behind the TV on the other end of the hearth that is full of quilted ones also.

Think I'll live long enough to get these quilted? Maybe if I give up the Internet and just sit and quilt in between doing for Hubby.

Kim's comment:

Good thing I bought myself a Juki so I don't have to hand quilt all those!

Sunday, October 7, 2007

Some pictures today

I wanted to show you what I found out in the yard the other day. Last year we had about four huge Oaks cut down that were dieing. My new neighbor was afraid they were going to fall on their new home. These were all trees that were well over 100 years old. They cut up all the logs and will burn them in their fireplace.

This is one of the stumps and look at the fungus that grew out of the bottom of it this fall.
I said I had finally finished handquilting this BOM that my husbands Home care nurse wanted. She is paying a little for it. Wanted to give her something as she has been so good and helpful for us.

I just spread it out on the couch. There is a picture of it on the bed before It was quilted in an old blog

And here's a close-up of the center

You can see how I quilted some of it. The outside border strip has the same chain quilting.

My Husband has name it STAR GAZER.

Tomorrow I will show you what I'm working on for my son and family for Christmas.
And that's all folks! this is Kim's ending when putting in the pictures. So glad she's home but nice she and DH got away for a couple days.

Friday, October 5, 2007

This and That

I need someone to talk to since Kim is gone so figured I'd write a little. Sure wish I could figure how to upload a picture into the text myself. I am going to try

I finished quilting the BOM I've been doing for my husbands Home Care Nurse. She is paying me for it but not what I usually get. I had wanted to make her something little as she seemed so interested in my quilting.

Now I still need to get a good picture and will have to wait till Kim gets back to post. I think I had posted a bit of it in one of my former blogs. called my ongoing project.

Then I have also been playing with some flannel charms and strips and have a design on the board. Have it about half sewn together. I wanted to make a throw for my Son and family for Christmas. They are coming in for the holiday and wanted. something to give them. They live at about 10,000 ft south of Denver on top of one of the mountains. Wonderful view. Can see Pike's Peak in the distance. But oh what a road. They think nothing of the several feet of snow that they get. The plows are always out working, grading. The school bus comes around. This is where my purple hair grandson lives.

We are in the midst of a very bad draught. It's been 3 weeks since we had about a half inch of rain. We get the news from DC and some parts of Virginia are being restricted on water use. The reservoir's are so low. We have a deep well with wonderful mountain water but who knows how long that might hold out. They are saying maybe a shower next Wed. but up in the 90's this weekend. Did someone say it's October?

Monday, October 1, 2007

Fall is coming

The leaves are starting to turn and the oak leaves are falling.
It's been to dry this summer so we probably won't have much good color from the Oaks. The brown ones are falling every day.

This is a picture of the old dogwood just outside my porch. Only taken from the ground so can't see quite as much color yet. Don't you like my picnic table? Just one too many picnics on it over the years. It probably was made by the contractor that built this house in 1964. It hadn't fallen apart until this past winter. I sort of like the rustic look.

Then this picture is taken closer to my neighbors. That bright orange tree is a dogwood, and the real dark maroon leaves are from a small maple, I think on our property.
Since the sun hits the dogwood most of the day it gets the brillant color.

Kim's mention yesterday of Placerville, California reminded me of something else about my grandfather.

My great grandfather went to California overland but sent his wife on boat via the horn,, I think they called it. Anyway when she landed in San Fransisco they went to Redwood City and my grandfather was the first WHITE baby born there. Can't give you the date. But in later years then his Mother had a rooming house in Placerville for the miners.

From there as a young man he started to drive 20 mule team down to the Arizona territory. Always said that the valley would be great farming land if they could get some water.

He settled then for a while in Arizonia with another fellow and they needed a housekeeper. The other man had a sister up in Salt Lake City with 3 young children and her husband had left her. So they brought her down to Arizona to cook for them while they farmed. She ended up marrying my grandfather.
They then had 6 children, 3 that survived the influenza
He got arthritis bad in later years and I only remember when he died when I was 5 years old. My grandmother lived to 82 years old.