Monday, July 27, 2015

Westport on Lake Champlain


While we were in the "North Country" for a family reunion, I had the opportunity to visit the town where my maternal grandparents lived.  

Growing up, we spent the summers in the Adirondack mountains.  It's a slower paced way of life and one I have fond memories of.

My grandmother worked as a librarian at the public library pictured above.  She introduced me to a variety of authors including Phyllis Whitney.  I think that was the beginning of my love affair with mystery novels.  

Just down from the library is a boat marina that once belonged to my great-grandfather and his brother.


That was long before my time, but it was in my grandfather's blood; the marina, the dock, the lake.  His love ran deep for all things related to the lake.  That love rubbed off on all of us and seeing the lake for the first time after so many years brought strong emotion and tears to my eyes.


This is the view from what once was my grandparents property.  The house and grounds no longer look the same, but the view from the birch tree on remains unchanged.  Those are the blue mountains of Vermont across the lake.

There used to be stairs to the right of the birch tree that took you down to a pebbly beach.  Below is an old photo of the beach.  The foundation used to be a boat house.


Looking back, I think I took those times for granted.  I wish I had revered them more.  Time with my grandparents and the opportunity we had to spend our summers on the lake.


Here is an old photo of me with my grandparents (circa 1985 - or there about).  

"If you're lucky enough to still have grandparents, visit them, cherish them and celebrate them while you can."
Regina Brett

Thanks for taking a stroll with me down memory lane.

Until next time,

Heather



Friday, July 24, 2015

Babette


Today I had a burst of crochet energy and started a new project.

The Babette Blanket.  
It's an "oldie" from Interweave Crochet published in 2006.  There are a lot of cool color combinations to look through on Ravelry if you need a dose of inspiration.


The pattern is available to download HERE.  The squares themselves are basic grannies, but the pattern lays out the color combination for each square in a very organized and precise manner.  Not to mention how to lay out all the different size squares once you have them complete.

The pattern was inspired by the work of Kaffe Fassett.  I wasn't familiar with the person, so Googled him and found some really gorgeous works of art.  As I was looking through his work, I found a fabric line in his name.  I thought the colors in this were really cool and fun.

Florence Rose Fabrics
Kaffe Fassett - Paperweight - Algae
I didn't have all these colors, so am just using what I have on hand.

Not sure how it will turn out in the end, but it will be fun to watch it "morph".

Have a great weekend!

Heather


Thursday, July 23, 2015

Around the Meadow


Bees taking over our propane tank.


Black dog with large tongue relaxing in the grass.


New house going in adjacent to us.


Outside looking in.


My little sunny-patch garden that needs tending.


Queen Anne's lace populating the open fields.


Quiet evenings to enjoy.

God Bless and Good Night,

Heather

King's Gardens at Ft. Ticonderoga


Historical places intrigue me.  

On one of our day trips, while we were traveling, we visited Ft. Ticonderoga.  And, just below the fort, is King's Gardens.  The gardens are part of what was once a summer house owned by the Pell Family.  The Pell Family was responsible for restoring the fort in the early 1900's.  

The gardens are well cared for and lovely.


Cupid shooting his arrows reminded me of a youthful David slewing his giants.


The gardens were designed by Marian Cruger Coffin.  She was one of the first female landscape architects and designed gardens for many of America's wealthiest families of her time.  

The garden sits behind what was once a summer house (and later a hotel).  


The house itself has fallen into disrepair.  But, there were reminders of what an enchanting place this once was.


I did ask and it sounds like there are plans to restore the house.  I'd love to go back when that work is complete.  Hopefully they will decorate it with period furniture and artwork.

In the meantime, the gardens are decorated with colorful flowers to enjoy. 




Walking through the gates was like taking a step back in time.


And, thoroughly enjoyable!

I hope you enjoyed visiting King's Garden's.


I'll share more about the fort itself in another post.


Make it a great day!

Heather


Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Ruffles and Ridges


While away on vacation I made some dishcloths.  What you say?  Crochet?!  I know, I know.  I haven't talked crochet in a while.  But, I hope you'll like what I'm sharing today.  

:-)

This is my version of a half double crochet ridge dishcloth.  It's super easy and works up in a snap.  I'm calling it Ruffles and Ridges (the blue and green in the photo above).  Ruffles for the edging and of course the ridge for the raised ridge this technique creates.  The one pictured in yellow was completed with a reverse single crochet round.

The only thing a beginner might find difficult is working in the 3rd loop of the half double crochet.  I found some good tutorials for those who might not be familiar with working in the 3rd loop.  Moogly has a video tutorial using the stitch worked in the round and discusses the technique in her blog post entitled Half Double Crochet in the Third Loop.  Also referenced in her post is a link to another good article on the stitch from My Hobby Is Crochet.  I wasn't familiar with this blog, but thought the post was very informative.  I'll let you browse through the articles and see the different ways you can use this versatile stitch.

Below is my version of a half double crochet ridge dishcloth.

Enjoy!


Example, pictured below, showing a hdc in the 3rd loop:

The "3rd loop" is on the side of your piece when working flat.  Not to be confused with the loops on top that are often referred to as either the front loop or back loop.




Ruffles and Ridges Dishcloth

"H" Hook (5.00 mm)
100% Cotton worsted weight (approx. 2 oz)
Blunt needle for weaving in ends

Note:  Turning chain (tch) is included in stitch count.


ch 30

Row 1 - hdc in 3rd ch from hook and each ch across (28 hdc + ch 2 for beg hdc = 29 sts)
Row 2 - ch 2, turn, sk 1st hdc, working in 3rd loop of hdc, hdc in next 3rd loop of hdc and each 3rd loop across ending with a hdc in tch (29 sts).

Repeat Row 2 until dishcloth is square.  Fasten off.


Border

Round 1 - ch 1, sc an even number of sts around dishcloth with 3 sc in each corner, sl st to beg sc.  
Round 2 - ch 1, sc in same st as sl st, *ch 2, sk 1 sc, sc in next st, repeat from * around cloth to last sc, ch 2, sk last sc, sc in same st as beg sc.  Fasten off.  

Weave in loose ends.

beg - beginning
ch - chain
hdc - half double crochet
sc - single crochet
sk - skip
sl st - slip stitch
st(s) - stitches
tch - turning chain

Make it a great day!

Heather


Monday, July 20, 2015

Up, Down and Around I-90

Ft. Ticonderoga on Lake Champlain, NY

King's Garden, Ft. Ticonderoga

Globe Thistle, King's Garden, Ft. Ticonderoga

Ft. Ticonderoga, Birdseye view from Mt. Defiance

Niagara Falls, NY

Presque Isle, Erie, PA

Wave Break, Presque Isle, Erie, PA

Sea Gull, Presque Isle

We've been on a whirlwind adventure for the past 10 days or so.

It's good to be home and sleep in my own bed.

Hard to believe we are in the last two weeks of July.  

Summer is flying by.

Hope you are well.

Heather