Monday, December 22, 2008

We Wish You A Merry Christmas!

Wayne and Bonnie & Tuffy too...
wishes you a very Merry Christmas, and Happy New Year too...a year filled with quilts, quilters, and quilting friends.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Ice Skating in Paducah!

Paducah has a new ice skating rink downtown across from the National Quilt Museum. The City rented a portable unit that has been having 1,000 skaters a day visit on the weekend. They have milk crates that can be stacked for the novice skaters to help them stand up until they get the hang of it. Private parties have filled the hours when the rink is not open to the public. It will be open until early in February. So put on your skates and don't break a leg -- that is exactly why I'm not digging out my old skates.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

It's Nearly Christmas

Tonight after the Schroeder Publishing Christmas party, Wayne, Andi Reynolds and her husband Dennis, and I drove through Noble Park to see the lights. This was a really nice nativity scene.

We enjoyed dinner catered by Patti's Restaurant from Grand Rivers, music by the Tilghman girl's chorale group, and an enjoyable evening with our colleagues.

Tomorrow is a vacation day for me. After going out for breakfast, I have just a little shopping to finish up and we'll be all set to spend Christmas with our families.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Did you see that moon on Friday night?

When we came home on Friday night, the moon was so big and bright that I had to grab my camera and go out to take a photo. It had a colored halo around it. Wow, what a sight!

This was the closest the moon has been to earth in 15 years. It was about 30 percent brighter and 14 percent larger than the other full moons seen so far this year. That's because our cosmic neighbor will be much closer than usual. The moon will be at 221,560 miles (356,566 kilometers) from Earth. (Info taken from the Internet).

We thought Tuffy would want to go outside and stay out all night...but he didn't. Maybe he likes it darker at night.

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Cooking with the Kirklands & $1.49 gas today...

More recipes are coming in for our family cookbook. It won't be ready for Christmas; we'll proof it over the holidays so we can get it printed shortly thereafter. Typing all of these recipes sure does make me want to make some of these dishes. Everyone is sharing their favorite recipes. I did go out and purchase some items to make a couple batches of candy. The real cooked kind of chocolate fudge with pecans or English walnuts is one of our favorites.
Wow, can you believe that our gas is now below $1.50? We'll take every penny they give us. It is sure nice to be able to fill the car with a $20 bill.

Sunday, November 30, 2008

After Thanksgiving...gas is $1.50 here now

After enjoying our Thanksgiving turkey, it's been a nice quiet weekend. Shopping for a few groceries for things to eat up the rest of the turkey...turkey & noodle casserole, and turkey salad sandwiches, and a trip to Office Depot to replace our computer keyboard (I actually wore out the e and s keys) meant that we had to head to the shopping areas. Surprisingly, we were able to park close and the traffic wasn't bad. We bought an ergonomic keyboard and so far I like the feel of it. The keys are in a slight arc instead of straight across. It seems like a natural fit for the hands.

I've kept busy this weekend. For the last several years, our family has talked about doing a family cookbook to share our favorite recipes. I have collected recipes and I spent Thursday and Friday typing them into a recipe format. You know how sometimes you write a recipe on a card and only record the basic stuff. Well, when you put those recipes into a cookbook, you have to fill in all of the other information that people might need to cook, how long you bake those cookies or cake. Mom even dug out her recipe for Hard (lye) Soap, and we have Karen's recipe for Homemade Noodles (and they are really good). I'm still waiting for recipes from some of the family so we have some from everyone. I don't think it will be done in time for Christmas because it will take 2 - 3 weeks to get it printed. We'll gather some more recipes when we go home for Christmas and then get it finished and printed. I want to include photos of our families too.

Some of the recipes that I included are the candies that Wayne's Mom and I used to get together at this time of year to make. We would each buy 10 pounds of sugar and we'd spend a whole weekend making batches and batches of different kinds of fudge, divinity, peanut brittle, date roll, and more. We wouldn't stop until we'd used up all of that sugar. Then we had goodies to share all through the holiday season. Typing recipes for all that food made me go out and buy some ingredients to make Toffee, peppermint bark, and Santa's Snicker Surprise cookies. I haven't baked much this will be a treat. Oh, and I need to make my favorite - Snickerdoodles - Mom added that recipe to the book.

Wow, I love the feel of this new keyboard. It has a good touch.

Gas here ranges from $1.50 to $1.56. Doesn't that make you wonder why there were charging us $4.00 a gallon a while back?

Today is a sewing day. I haven't stitched a thing for a while, and I'm ready to make a sample of a Lone Star quilt for a new class that I'm going to be teaching soon.
Have a great Sunday!

Bonnie B

Saturday, November 22, 2008

It's Saturday...gas is $1.58 today

Hi. It's Saturday and I'm starting to get myself organized for Thanksgiving. Wayne and I did our grocery shopping today before the crowds hit the stores next week. We'll be spending a nice quiet weekend here at home. After working hard these past few weeks to get the Paducah Registration Guide finished, I'm ready for a few days of doing some, I haven't touched my sewing machine for weeks.

I just received the updated version of the Bernina digitizing software, and I've been itching to digitize some of my own designs.

This is also the weekend that I work on our Christmas Newsletter...written like a small newspaper, complete with photos and news articles from throughout this past year. It takes me a few days to get it written and then several more to print it, so we always starting on Thanksgiving so it can out in early December.

The price of gas is still dropping here. It is still crazy though. Some days it will drop 10 cents and then go back up 5 cents the next day, and then drop again. Guess it is a byproduct of the turmoil our economy is in.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Breezy fall day and gas is $1.71 today

Happy's a breezy fall day here in Paducah today. Wayne and I did some shopping this afternoon. We couldn't believe the traffic at the mall...all of the stores had sales already and the day after Thanksgiving is still a couple of weeks away.

This week we had rain Wednesday through Friday, so we had rain showers and the trees were raining leaves all over our yard. Now we have to get those leaves dry before we can do our mulching with the mower. And we are still waiting for Mr. Tree Trimmer Guy to come take care of the four trees that were damaged from Hurricane Ike winds. They have been swamped.

We saw gas for $1.71 here today. It sure makes you wonder why it was $4.00 a gallon a while back, doesn't it?

Looks like a good night for some hot soup.
Keep warm wherever you are.

Bonnie B

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Colorful Trees, $1.95 gas & More

Today is Saturday and I worked until about 1:30 p.m. - we are working on the Registration Guide for Paducah and info is still coming in from the teachers.
This was the view in our back yard this afternoon - the color in the trees is very late this year. The pretty yellow, oranges, and reds are just now showing off their color. These trees go down the left edge of our property. Some of the trees have been raining leaves this week as we've had brief periods of wind and rain showers. Next will come mulching up the leaves with the mower. We don't rake leaves, we just mulch them and let them nurture the ground during the winter.
More good news is that the price of gas has fallen below $2 a gallon. Today it is $1.95 at the station up the street from where we live. Who would have thought that we'd think that under $2 was cheap. Wayne certainly likes filling the gas tank for $20 instead of $40.
It was a beautiful, sunny, crisp fall day here today. We took advantage of the bright sun with a little shopping trip and stopping for a bite of lunch.
Hope you all are enjoying these nice fall days. Soon it will be cool enough that we'll want to stay inside and quilt though. That will be a good thing!
Bonnie B, who is ready to make a quilt...

Monday, October 27, 2008

Fall Trip to the Elk & Bison Prairie

Wayne and I always love to take a trip to see the leaves. Yesterday we invited Andi Reynolds, our new Executive Book Editor at AQS, to join us for a trip to the Elk & Bison Prairie at Land Between the Lakes (that's between Kentucky Lake and Lake Barkley) about 40 minutes from here. They have 32 elk and 69 bison on the prairie and I think we must have seen all of them.

We go so we arrive their about 4:30 p.m. when the animals start moving to the watering holes and feeding. You can also go at 7:00 a.m. but that's too early for me.

If you come to the Paducah area, it is a nice drive to get there, and the drive through the prairie is picturesque. We usually drive around at least three times because the animals move from one grazing area to another. We've been there enough now that we know most of the spots to look for them. I hope you enjoy my photos of our day at the Elk & Bison Prairie.

While the color in most of our trees hasn't been very vibrant this year in this area, the reds and yellows show up nice behind this elk. You can see how tall the prairie grasses get too.

This bull elk had a pretty nice rack.

Here is number 32 and her friends grazing under the trees. All of the elk have been tagged.

This group of females couldn't decide which way to go. The bull elk was way off to the right, and I think they didn't want to get too far from him so they went across the road and back again. We did get to hear one good bugle from one of the bull elk. I guess he was protecting his ladies.

We see other animals there too. Yesterday we saw a pair of turkeys just walking through the tall grasses. We also saw a pretty heron...but I was too slow on the trigger to get his picture.

Here's part of the herd spending the afternoon soaking up the sun. There were quite a few small ones among the group. Several were having fun rolling around in the dirt.

Sometimes the traffic had to stop and wait for the bison to cross the road. This one stood there for quite a he was saying, "whose road is this anyway?"

This big fella was walking right along side our car...I was standing up through the moonroof on our car so I could shoot photos. Don't you wonder what he was thinking seeing this woman in a red sweatshirt taking his picture?

Sunday, October 19, 2008

A View of the AQS Quilt Expo

Wow, what a busy two weeks we've had. The AQS Quilt Expo in Des Moines was beautiful. Can you imagine being surrounded by 900 quilts and 300 vendor booths? It was almost quilter overload.

I thought you would enjoy seeing a photo of the exhibit hall floor -- well, this is part of it anyway. The Iowa Events Center has a row of windows that overlook the exhibit hall floor and give a spectacular view of the show. Just look at that riot of color that explodes right before your eyes from this viewpoint.

I had a fun surprise at the show. My friend, Euphie Bielejeski, and her husband Gary, stopped by the show to say hello. They had been visiting friends in Centerville and saw an article in the Sunday Des Moines Register that had my name in it. So they decided they would stop by on their way home to see if I was there. Indeed I was. I didn't recognize her until she spoke. What a nice surprise. We have kept in touch at Christmastime, but hadn't seen each other for about 25 years.

After the show, we visited our families in eastern Iowa. My sister, Karen Franzen, just retired and we had a surprise retirement dinner for her and Dellwyn, who retired this year too. And would you believe that no one spilled the beans so they were definitely surprised. Then we spent a day with Wayne's Mom and sister Kathi. We went to the apple orchard and had lunch together on Monday. Tuesday we finally got to sleep in and then visited Connie and John Bohling. John and Wayne were in school together - wow, they've known each other for a LONG time.

And, then it was back to work on Thursday and Friday. On Tuesday of this week, they finally signed the sales agreement to sell the Executive Inn to Space Coast Hospitality. The closing should be this next week and then they can begin the renovations on the hotel. The City is already getting bids for the demolition for the remodeling of the convention center. We just might have some renovated facilities in time for the 2009 quilt show - let's keep our fingers crossed.

All for now....
Bonnie B

Friday, October 3, 2008

Meet Me in Des Moines

Wow, can you believe it is time for the AQS Quilt Expo in Des Moines. I will look forward to seeing my quilting friends and Iowa friends at the show.

It's going to be a BIG quilt show -- more than 900 quilts on exhibit - that the largest number of quilts ever exhibited at an AQS quilt show. You'll need at least a couple of days to see all of the quilts and the 300 vendor booths in the Merchant Mall. And if you like hockey, the opening game for the Iowa Chops will be on Friday night at 7 p.m. - they are having a special for the quilters and you'll get your own cow bell to cheer on the Chops. Many of our AQS staff will be there and I'm sure you will hear them. For more information about getting tickets to the Iowa Chops game, go to .

Watch the TV and listen to the radio in the Des Moines area, I'll be the guest at the stations there sharing information about the show.

See you in Des Moines, October 8 - 11.

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Busy Days...

It's almost time for us to head to Des Moines for the AQS Quilt Expo at the Iowa Events Center, October 8 - 11. We're busy at the office with all of the last minute details, and packing all of our supplies to go on the truck. It's always a challenge to remember everything that we might need there -- and 8.5 hours is too far to come home to get it.

We are really excited to have more than 900 quilts for our exhibits there. That will be the largest number of quilts ever exhibited in one AQS quilt show. Wow, can you imagine getting to see 900 quilts in one place?

Be sure check out the AQS Quilt News blog - we are always posting news items there. . You can post comments and ask questions there too.

Hope to see you all in Des Moines.

Bonnie B

Monday, September 1, 2008

Nashville Quilt Expo was great fun!

What could be more fun as a show producer than to see so many quilters anxious to get into the show. And there was plenty for them to see - more than 500 quilts on exhibit, and 350 vendor booths with all of those goodies that we just have to have. Who else gets to plan a party for 25,000 quilters and have them all show up?

This was our eighth quilt show at Gaylord Opryland, 2000 and 2002 - 2008, and since they didn't have July dates for us in 2009, we'll hold our show in 2009 at the Knoxville Convention Center in Knoxville, Tennessee. Opryland is a great facility and very convenient - only two hours away - but we needed to have July dates to separate our shows for the sake of our staff in preparing for each of them. This year with the show in late August and our next event in early October, it is very challenging to say the least with only 5 or 6 weeks in between. Two months between the shows will be much better.

The Des Moines show, October 8 - 11, will have more quilts than we have ever exhibited at one show. You'll get to see 800 quilts on exhibit in Des Moines. Wow...that's a whole day or more just to see the quilts. And then there will be 350 vendor booths to go through...that another whole day or more. So come stay all four days and enjoy it all.
If you haven't purchased your ticket for Mark Lipinski, editor of Quilter's Home magazine, do it right away. This will be a sellout! You can call Marcelle in the AQS office at 270-898-7903, ext. 146 to order your tickets .

See you soon in Des Moines, Iowa.
Bonnie B

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Hi from Kentucky

It is definitely summer here in Paducah. The temperatures are down into the mid-80s now, but they've been in the 90s with a heat index in the 100s. Too hot for me. Air conditioning, here I come.

The AQS Quilt Expo in Nashville begins next week. We have some great quilts in the contest, and a whole variety of special exhibits. The Chicago School of Fusing quilters will have an exhibit of their art quilts...all fused, of course. They certainly know how to use color in their quilts. And for those who love traditional quilts, an exhibit of quilts inspired by 1840s quilts from the American Quilt Study Group will show off their handiwork. With this being an election year, I thought we needed a patriotic quilt exhibit - we have one, God Bless America, a contest curated by Judy Buckboard, Buckboard Antique Quilts.

I can't wait to see the performance by Joe Cunningham, Joe the Quilter: A Musical Quilt Show. And we'll have a great time at Show & Tell with Eleanor Burns, and Brunch with Sue Nickels.

It is just fun for me to see all of the quilters who come from all over the country. If you still need tickets, check at the Workshop Desk once you arrive at the show. The Workshop Desk will be open at 12:00 noon on Tuesday, and at 8:00 a.m. on show days, until closing time each day.

Hope to see you at the show.

Bonnie B

Sunday, August 3, 2008

Dog Days of Summer

The heat here in Paducath this past week sure makes it feel like the dog days of summer - we were over 100 degrees for the heat index all week long. And rain on Thursday evening just made it muggier - and it was already muggy enough.

It's nearly time for the AQS Quilt Expo in Nashville - August 20 - 23 at Gaylord Opryland Resort. We'll have more than 500 quilts on exhibit. Don't miss Joe Cunningham with his performance as Joe the Quilter.

Registration is closed so we can prepare for the show -- make the last name badges, gather all of our supplies, and get all of our staff oriented to their job assignments at the show.

If you still need tickets or want to check on the availability of any workshops, just stop at the AQS Workshop Desk at the show. The Workshop Desk will be open on Tuesday, August 19 from 12:00 noon to 7:00 p.m.

If you are a first-time visitor to our Expo in Nashville, I highly recommend the Quilter's Link at 7:00 p.m. on Tuesday in the Magnolia Ballroom (just up the stairs from Finley's Pub). Representatives from the Nashville Visitors Bureau, the hotel, and our AQS staff will give you some tips for getting around the city, the hotel, and the show. There is no charge for this event so just come to the Magnolia Ballroom to join us.

See you soon in Nashville, Tennessee.


Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Three's A Crowd

We've been watching the wrens for the past few weeks...building their nest - notice the twigs sticking out under the roof line. They we heard little bitty cheeps, and recently they've making a lot of racket. Here they are with me standing about 4 feet from the bird house, waiting for momma wren to bring them some juicy bugs. One of these little guy was trying his wings inside the house. I thought - three is definitely a crowd in this little house.
On Monday, they flew away. It's always fun to watch them grow.

Friday, June 27, 2008

25th AQS Anniversary Quilt Show in PADUCAH !!!

Hi All:
Today we announced that AQS will host its 25th anniversary in Paducah, Kentucky. Space Coast Hospitality Management Services, the new owners and management company of the Executive Inn, has contracted with A & K Construction, Inc., of Paducah, Kentucky, to renovate all of the hotel rooms and provide improved hotel services by April, 2009. In addition, the City of Paducah has committed to remodel the Julian M. Carroll Convention Center.

The remodeling will solve many of the problems that we had at the 2008 show - air conditioning problems in the convention center, and the run-down conditions at the hotel. It has taken the months since the show for the plans to develop far enough that AQS is comfortable that the renovations can be completed in time for next year's show. More renovations will continue after the 2009 show with the building of an entirely new entrance and other exterior modifications.

We will all look forward to a new look for this hotel that has hosted the AQS Quilt Show for the past 24 years. Watch the AQS Web site, for upcoming information on making reservations at the Executive Inn; the reservation system is one of the things that will change soon so they aren't ready right now to handle reservations for the show.

And even though many of you have complained about the high rates the hotels in Paducah charge, those rates are set by the hotels. In Paducah we do not contract with the hotels like we do in our other show sites. We certainly can't be involved in price setting of the rates the hotels charge. If you don't like the hotel rates here, I suggest that you look at attending one of our other shows where there are more hotel rooms and thus more competition between the hotels, so the rates are in line with what is charged at other national quilt shows.

For me, this announcement today means that we can move full steam ahead with the plans for our 25th anniversary quilt show.

Saturday, June 21, 2008

Blue Hydrangea

Look at the pretty blue of the hydrangeas in our front yard. The rain this week had battered them a little bit. As you drive around town right now, the hydrangeas are just beautiful. The white that you see in the background is Tuffy wandering under the bush.

Tuffy Came to Help Me Take Photographs

I went outside this evening to take photos of the hydrangea bushes in the front yard and Tuffy came to help (???) me. He decided that he'd wander in and out of my feet while I tried to get close to the flowers.

How can you not take a photograph of those beautiful blue eyes?

Des Moines Convention Center - High & Dry

Several people have asked about the condition of the convention center in Des Moines. It sits on a hill and has been high and dry through the flooding that occurred in some parts of Des Moines. The ball park parking lot that we will use was flooded for a couple of days, but they played a ballgame last Saturday night - with no one there but the two teams - and the lot is back to normal now.

Keep all those who are caught in the waters of the flooding rivers in your prayers. Our families in Iowa are dry, but there is water covering bridges near Wayne's Mom and sister Kathi. The bridges over the Cedar River have all been closed due to the high water. Kathi said her doctor, dentist, insurance man, Dollar General store, and gas station that she uses in Columbus Jct. are all under water.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Happy Birthday

Today is my birthday and it is the third night in a row that I've eaten out. We went to Patti's Restaurant in Grand Rivers - my favorite birthday dinner spot. Of course we had the 2-inch thick pork chop...yummmmm. We didn't have room to eat dessert then so we brought home coconut cream pie - my birthday pie... ymmmmmmmmmm. The meringue is about 6 inches high.

Kelly's Baby Shower

Last night we had a baby shower for Kelly Meyer. Her baby should arrive the end of July and then she's going to stay home and take care of her little girl.
When she arrived home last night, her husband Chris said the baby had more clothes than Kelly does. GRIN Such cute clothes. One of my favorites was the box of Mary Jane socks that Chrystal gave her - too cute. Wayne and I gave them a Raggedy Ann doll from Arcola, IL, home of the designer of the Raggedy Ann and Andy dolls - we stopped there on one of our trips; and a piggy bank with some 2008 dollar coins to commemorate the year of her birth.

Our Anniversary

June 16 was our anniversary. These are the pretty flowers that Wayne sent to the office...lilies, daisies, snapdragons, and whatever those filler flowers are.

This was our 45th anniversary...guess I'll have to quit saying I'm 39 now. Wayne and I enjoyed dinner at Outback Steakhouse - our favorite place for steaks.

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Catching Up

Since I last wrote here, I've been to Peoria to teach - always love getting out into the classroom. The Gems on the Prairie Quilt Guild is 250 members strong. I did my Princess & the Pea lecture, looking at quilting in the U.S. and all around the world. Also taught classes on Borders, Bindings, and Windmill - Twisted Log Cabin - the quilt that get all of the mail from the opening images on Simply Quilts.

And we are busy finalizing the Registration Guide for the AQS Quilt Expo - Des Moines that will be held October 8 - 11, 2008 at the Iowa Events Center in Des Moines. Let's all keep those Des Moines and Cedar Rapids, Iowa folks in our prayers - they are being inundated with water, water everywhere.

Happy Father's Day to your Dad and all the Dads out there.


Tuesday, June 3, 2008

In memory of our friend and neighbor - Lorraine Ingram

Yesterday our next door neighbor, Lorraine Ingram, passed away at her home. She loved her home and all of the flowers in her yard. Over the past few months her eye sight was failing and she didn't get to work in her gardens much. We helped her when there were things that Wayne and I could do - we always told her that we were helping her and we hoped that someone would help our mothers in the same way.

She loved her little Jack Russell, Katie. She was good company for Lorraine. Katie's barking more than once set us off to make sure Lorraine was okay - usually Katie was just barking at a squirrel or a bird in the yard.

Bless you Lorraine - you're in His hands now. Lorraine had read through the Bible at least five times.

Saturday, May 31, 2008

Eastern Towhee

This is the first Eastern Towhee we've seen this year. The white stripes along their tail really stand out when they are in flight. This one is eating the bits on the ground under the squirrel feeder.

Improper Eating Manners, GRIN

The squirrels have learned how to lift the lid to the squirrel feeder. The feed is getting low here and this one has to practically stand on its head to get the sunflower seeds. Notice how it's standing on one leg and using the other to lift itself up. Our back yard is always busy with birds and other animals. We're might have baby wrens - both mom and dad wren are bringing in food, but we don't hear them yet.

Saturday, May 24, 2008

Indigo Bunting

I thought you would enjoy seeing a young indigo bunting in this flowering tree. This one is just getting color. Did you know that they really have black feather and it is the light refracting that makes them look blue. Some of them will look like they have black feathers in their wings and tail sections. I like to photograph them when they are sitting in the late afternoon sun when they look such a gorgeous blue.
This is the Tulip Poplar blossom - you see how it got its name. The leaves are also a very unique shape. The whole tree has been covered with these blossoms for a couple of weeks now.

Tulip Poplar tree

The Tulip Poplar tree is the state tree of Kentucky. We have one in our yard and I couldn't get far enough away from it to get the whole tree. It is very tall. It's been blooming and I'll show you the pretty blossom next.

Little Tubby

This little ground hog decided to visit our back yard. If we go out the door, he runs for cover under the porch. They live in the woods across the street. I guess they like to munch in our yard too.

Friday, May 23, 2008

Here Birdy, Birdy

Tuffy on guard under the wren house. He has the most beautiful markings on his face, doesn't he? We're not partial or anything though. Grin


Here is mama wren sitting on her nest. How about this for a bird's eye view?

Kitty Lust

We have wrens nesting in the birdhouse on the clothesline. Tonight Tuffy saw one of them fly into the house and he took up this position under it. He says - come on out and play....

Monday, May 19, 2008

Whitesocks goes to Kitty Heaven Today

Whitesocks, age 15 (that's 76 in people years) went to be our kitty angel today as a result of kidney failure. Socks adopted Wayne when we first moved to Paducah in 1994, and she had just had her first litter of kittens at the home we were renting. When the owners moved her to their home (just a few doors away), every day Socks would bring all of the kittens back to our house. After a few days, the kittens would stay at the new house, but not Socks. So Wayne and Socks were partners. She would come to his whistle and walk to the mailbox with him like a puppy would.
She could be a little dickens. After we moved into our home on Finley Court in 1995, something chased her up a tree...not just any tree, but one that was about 50 feet tall. A call to the fire department told us that when she was hungry, she would come down. After two days of sitting up in the tree, Wayne rented a 40 foot ladder, our neighbor Huel and I held the ladder while Wayne climbed up after Socks. After that she did a little tree climbing, but not anything that tall.
She didn't welcome Tuffy much when he joined our family a couple of years ago. They settled into Tuffy trying to play with her, and Socks hissing at him. Today Tuffy is looking for her.
Whitesocks was a good kitty and we will miss her.

Sunday, May 18, 2008

The National Quilt Museum

So here is how the front of the building looks now. When the sun isn't so bright, I'll go take a better photo of the museum with its new signage.

The National Quilt Museum

After the unveiling of the new sign on the outside of the museum, Meredith Schroeder, Congressman Whitefield, and Bill Schroeder posed for a photo to mark the occasion.

MAQS recognized as The National Quilt Museum

Yesterday, May 17, Congressman Whitfield presented quilt museum founders Bill and Meredith Schroeder with the Congressional Record proclaiming the Museum of the American Quilter's Society as The National Quilt Museum.

The ceremony was attended by staff members of Senator Mitch McConnell and Congressman Whitefield, city and county officials, present and past MAQS Board members, Friends of MAQS, Paducah Ambassadors, quilters, and others interested in quilting and the quilt museum.

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Armadillo - born dead along side the road GRIN

After I taught in Chicago, Wayne and I drove to the Ozarks for a few days. I quit counting how many dead armadillos we saw along the road, but it was a bunch of them. Finally decided I should stop and take a photo of one of them. I swear they must be born dead along side the road because I've never seen a live one. Here's a bit of information about the armadillo:
In the U.S., the sole resident armadillo is the Nine-banded Armadillo (Dasypus novemcinctus), which is most common in the central southernmost states, particularly Texas. Their range is as far east as Florida and as far north as Kansas, and while cold winters have slowed the expansion of their range (due to a lack of sufficient body fat), they have been consistently expanding their range over the last century due to a lack of natural predators and have been found as far as western Kentucky, and are expected to eventually reach Ohio before the cold winters inhibit their expansion.

Armadillos are prolific diggers. Many species use their sharp claws to dig for food, such as grubs, and to dig dens. The Nine-banded Armadillo prefers to build burrows in moist soil near the creeks, streams, and arroyos near which it lives and feeds. The diet of different armadillo species varies, but consists mainly of insects, grubs, and other invertebrates. Some species, however, are almost entirely formicivorous (feeding mainly on ants).
Armadillos have poor vision but are not blind.

This armor-like skin appears to be the main defense of many armadillos, although most escape predators by fleeing (often into thorny patches, from which their armor protects them) or digging to safety. The North American Nine-banded Armadillo tends to jump straight in the air when surprised, and consequently often collides with the undercarriage or fenders of passing vehicles -- guess that explains why there are so many along the road.

Amish Planting

Another farmer was busy planting his field near Arcola, IL. He has five horses pulling his equipment.

Amish Plowing, Arcola, IL

Wayne and I stayed in Arcola, IL, on our way to Chicago. The Amish men were busy in the fields. This one is plowing with a team of nine horses.

Don't you just love the pastoral nature of this photo? Bright white fences, cows grazing, and the horses working the field.

Anothe version of Whacky Nine Patches

This was the barn raising version of the Whacky Nine Patches class. Penny used very similar values in the reds for her half-squares. Look at the texture that adds to her quilt - using several fabrics of similar value instead of one fabric.

Salt Creek Quilt Guild, Chicago

Last week I taught for the Salt Creek Quilters in Chicago. What a great group. Here is Bobbie showing off her Whacky Nine Patch quilt. This class lets you set the blocks a variety of ways. Bobbie used some fun yellow and orange fabrics. Do you see the Nine Patch blocks?

Saturday, May 3, 2008

Jenny Wren

From my swing on the back porch, I can look right into the wren house. This one was busy making a new nest in the house - see the twigs sticking out under the eaves. That's how high the twigs are piled inside it.

Rose-breasted Grosbeak

Here's a pair of Rose-breasted Grosbeak - male on the left in front of a female cardinal, and the female grosbeak is on the right.

Did you ever wonder why the male birds get all of the color?

Hairy and Downy Woodpeckers

We have four kinds of woodpeckers that frequent our feeders. Here is a female hairy woodpecker on the left, and a male downy woodpecker on the right. They both landed just as I was ready to take this photo.

We also get a few pileated woodpecker sightings, and lots of red-bellied woodpeckers (larger than either of these).

Indigo Buntings

The indigo buntings are some of my favorite birds. Here two of them are eating under the big feeders, where the cardinals knock feed off.

Hummers are back

Our backyard is humming with birds. The hummers always come back about a week before the quilt show and this year was no exception. Wayne only has two feeders out now, but that will increase to four when more of them arrive. We usually have 15 to 20 that live between our feeders and Lorraine's next door.

Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Delta Queen at Port of Paducah

On Sunday, the Delta Queen stopped at the Port of Paducah. It doesn't look like Congress is going to give the old beauty a stay this time. If you want to see the Delta Queen stay afloat, contact your congressmen and tell them to keep the Delta Queen cruising the U.S. waterways.
Don't you just love these old paddle boats?