Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Vitamin D at Tollgate Farm in Novi

I’m still plugging away at my projects but everything is in the “in between” stage - lots of applique completed and prepping for the embroidery. 
In the interim, I thought I’d share some photos from my “happy place” yesterday.  Tollgate Farm, in Novi, is a 160-acre farmstead, currently owned by Michigan State University, College of Agriculture and Natural Resources and the Americana Foundation.  
I was introduced to it by my friend Lauri – we would grab our lunches and visit its beautiful pond while we ate.  So many birds & butterflies, plus several retired horses (from Greenfield Village).  Besides the stunning paths weaving through some beautiful flora, there is a children’s garden, a rose garden, a greenhouse, a sugar shack and nature trails (yes, plus two geocaches!). There’s no cost or donation obligation.
Yesterday, while waiting for a friend, I snapped a few pictures with the Hipstamatic app on my phone. 

Here is a picture of the pond from an earlier blog post:

Happy Wednesday!

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Inside | Out Art and Cracking the Whip

It's that time of year again!

The Detroit Institute of Arts has taken up residence in our local communities! Thirteen towns in Southeast Michigan are hosting the DIA's Inside | Out Exhibit. Approximately a half dozen reproduced Masterpieces dot each town - hung outside coffee shops, libraries, boutiques. It's a fabulous way to introduce everyone to the original gems housed downtown and gives us an excuse to explore small towns.

So far this season, Lorna and I have explored Canton, Northville, Ferndale, and Troy.

We've discovered that Canton has some wonderful outdoor art made by local artists (loved the glass and iron sculpture outside the library).

Downtown Northville has great Angus burgers at a bar with outdoor seating.

Ferndale's works are TOO close to a great new taqueria called The Imperial.

Troy's art is located in it's historic village (of which, neither of us knew existed!).

I believe we may be visiting Waterford and Clawson next. Alongside the art, the Michigan Geocaching Organization has hid a corresponding Geocache at each location. We love a good puzzle!

Never fear, though. Ginger has been hovering on my armrest all night making sure I meet my appliqué goals for my SKoW. Who knew that I'd grow to actually enjoy the "A" word! I'm also pleased that I've learned not to stress over the "perfect block" and am having fun! I'll share some pics once the embroidery is complete.

Hope you have an outstanding weekend!



Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Devil Witch of Summer

Happy Summer!
My sister reminded me that it’s been awhile since I posted.  Have to admit – like the rest of you, I’m sure – it’s hard to quilt during the glorious summer weather!  I’ve been out exploring the Michigan countryside.  This past weekend, my sister and I visited the oldest geocaches in Oakland County for a challenge.  Hard to stay indoors when these line the trail paths:

I’ve also recently made some new friends, explorers like my sister and myself, who enjoy the eccentricities of Lower Michiganians.  Saw this along the road and knew I had to stop:

Unfortunately, as abundant the sites are of Michigan, I’ve also had to deal with another of Michigan’s residents: poison ivy.  It’s very plentiful this year – ugh!  Did you know Michiganders recognize local poison ivy based on the shape of our state? The bottom two leaves are the shape of two hands reversed (each with a notch where the thumb is).  The middle (top) leaf resembles a hand on top (notches on each side where thumb and pinky are).  Yet, this knowledge still didn’t prevent me from touching it!

Luckily, I have my bottle of Palmolive in the shower and my package of antihistamines on the counter.  The worst has subsided.  Any of you have any folk remedies I should remember for the future? 
I think Ginger would like me to stay closer to home! 

Time to get back to my journal quilt (I’ve almost finished another strip) and some stitcheries.

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Victory is Mine! Uh... Sort Of!

Ok, so it was noted that I left off two very important pictures in my last post.   Not because I'm embarrassed but because I didn't have them yet.  I'll let my geocaching log explain:

I'm SO PROUD OF MYSELF! Attending Geobash when my sister, WikidKriket, and I decided we needed to cache in a thunderstorm. We reached this hill and I knew I had to climb it, water sloughing off the side. I kicked off my flip flops, dug my feet in with each step, and hauled my robust rump up the side of that hill! Victory! Found the cache!

Then I remembered that I'm afraid of heights (and that was a pretty sheer drop on all 3 sides of that ridge). So, less gracefully than before, I descended, barefooted, backwards, until I reached the bottom. Did I mention that my supportive sister was giggling and snapping pictures the whole time?!?

Don't you just LOVE family????

Happy Wednesday!