Thursday, August 26, 2010

Four Corners, NM & UT & AZ & CO

Four Corners Monument is an area where, for a fee, you can go see where four states come together and meet. We had been driving west through Colorado and were about to cross into Arizona, but if you go to the monument, you are actually considered to be in New Mexico. Go figure.....

The names of the four states are in their respective places with a medallion in the center....

...but there is a colored map if one still isn't clear on the concept!

I could see that there were vendor stalls for food and souvenirs, but we were there pretty early so nothing was set up yet.

Dan decided that his feet were big enough to be in all four states simultaneously.....

...while I opted for the "twister" method! Do you like my pink RayBans?

At one point, Dan said, "Look up!"

And I got the very best photo of the whole trip -- he just stuck it on my netbook as my screen saver!

It was a great vacation -- now back to work!

Vacation, Day 9 -- Purgatory CO

Somehow I managed to delete a computer folder, so a bunch of my vacation pictures were lost. Fortunately, they were the early ones, some of which have already been posted to the blog -- as for the rest? We'll just have to visit again!

On Saturday morning, after we went to the two quilt shops in Durango, we piled in the SUVs and headed up to Durango Mountain Resort in Purgatory. It was another gorgeous summer day!

There were lots of events going on -- it's a very family oriented place, so there were plenty of things for kids to do, as well as hiking, biking and riding the ski lift to see the sights.

Both the older kids went on the trampolines -- Vanessa jumped up and down, screaming and laughing!

did a bunch of flips; he said it was a lot easier to do back flips than front ones, but he mastered them both....

After the kids got off the tramps, we went to find Zoe making friends in the little kids' playroom...

We rode the ski lift to the top; since Dan's initials are DMR, he and Vanessa decided to pose by the bus for Durango Mountain Resort before we got back on the lift for the return trip.

This is one of the pictures I took on the way down -- the scenery was just spectacular!

The girls got their faces painted -- Zoe wanted a butterfly....

...and Vanessa chose the Queen of Hearts!

We head home the next day, driving through the Four Corners area, where Colorado, Utah, Arizona and New Mexico all come together at a single point -- wonder what trouble we could get into there?

Saturday, August 21, 2010

The Grape Escape -- Alex's Beautiful Quilt

This is the quilt that I was working on and photographing for the blog, but only showing small parts of it as a teaser. Alex had told me that she was making it for The Quilt Life and that she didn't want pictures to be published before the magazine came out. I did four blog posts on this quilt; to see the first one, click here.

When The Quilt Life arrived in my mailbox yesterday, I figured the wraps were off! The picture above is on page 77, followed by the directions for making this spectacular quilt yourself.

I really like the magazine -- it's good balanced coverage and advice for all aspects of our quilting lives. I especially liked the article on page 84 by Teri Lucas about all of the reasons why a quilter might want to join a minigroup. Twenty years ago, my best friend Mary Ponce invited me to a minigroup and I credit that talented group of ladies for starting me on my quilting path.

Another picture from the magazine, this one of pages 78-79. The whole pattern is printed for you, including tips from Alex on how to prep and applique all those grapes!

And don't forget to regularly log on to to see what's up with Alex and Ricky!

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Durango Sewing Center -- Durango CO

Stopping in at Durango Sewing Center and meeting Gayle was such fun! Her business card even expresses her love of color and pattern....

This is definitely the place in the area to go if you are a Kaffe Fassett fan; there are quilts on the wall and many bolts of these lovely fabrics.

Gayle was neatening up Saturday morning after a busy Friday; she spread this quilt out on the floor for us to look at.

A red Janome machine was front and center when we first walked in, surrounded by fabrics for inspiration.

The classroom also displayed quilts as well as more Janome machines....

Loved the bright interior -- colorful quilts and fabrics and lots of light....

After looking at all the beautiful colors and fabrics, I bought the box of black and white fat quarters that Vanessa is looking at above.

This is a fairly new store, with batiks and other wonderful fabrics on order. It will definitely be a stop on my annual trip to Durango!

Durango Sewing Center
is located at 153 E. 15th St., Durango CO 81301 (ph: 970-382-8809). This is a new location since I originally wrote this post, so thought I'd better change it!

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Durango Quilt Company -- Durango CO

Well, now the mystery is solved about where the quilt shop went! I had seen this sign on Hwy 160 on my way into Durango, but just read the name of the store as we were speeding past, not the rest of the sign. Made a mental note to check it out. So on Saturday morning, Dan and I took Sidney and Vanessa and did exactly that.

In talking to Cathy, who I had met at the fair the day before, I got the scoop: Pat and Tammy, the owners of the quilt store I was familiar with, had sold and the new owners moved the store to its present location. I was happy to see that this was a change that, for once, didn't involve the economy!

It's a spacious, well lit store with quilts displayed everywhere you look....

...and a LOT of fabric!

Purse samples are in a display right by the door in case you want to work on a small project to match an outfit or to give to a friend....

When I looked closer at the poinsettia quilt wall hanging, I could see that it was made with hot fix ribbon...

Here's a similar one in more of a springtime design....

Liked the design and the purple/gold/white color scheme really appeals....

Vanessa hung out in the Babylock display for a while and then started looking at the Halloween fabric.

Halloween fabrics that I didn't already have -- hooray!

Durango Quilt Company has a large, complete notions wall -- we're always looking for new gadgets and tools, right?

Roomy classroom with more quilts on the walls -- the one below was Vanessa's and my favorite!

This is Cathy, holding the bolt of one of the fabrics that I bought; I bought the four fabrics on the bottom, three of which were Halloween designs that I didn't have. The fourth, that Cathy's holding, is an African wild animal print from Robert Kaufman -- love it and had to have 3 yards! The striped Halloween print, "Halloween Night" from RJR, will also make a perfect binding fabric with the animal print; they're awesome together!

And if you need something else to like about this store -- if the boys get out of hand, there's even a room here with a pool table so they can stay out of your hair while you shop!

Durango Quilt Company is located at 21516 Hwy 160 West, Durango CO 81303 (ph: 870-247-2582). It's definitely worth a visit if you are in southwest Colorado...

There's also another quilt store in town, this one selling Janome sewing machines. I'll tell you all about it in my next post.....

Monday, August 16, 2010

Vacation, Day 8 -- LaPlata County Fair

What do you do when you first get to the fair? Buy some junk food, play games to win stuffed animals, check out the farm animals? I go to the Home Arts building and look at the quilts -- here are my favorites at this fair:

"Spirit of the North Woods" by Wendy Williamson won two ribbons, a First Place in the Hobbyist division and a Reserve Champion ribbon. I wasn't familiar with that term, Vanessa explained that it is like a runner-up to the Grand Champion. She told me that she knew that because she got a First Place and a Reserve Champion last year for her banana bread and that winning two ribbons was very cool....

"Big Blue", pieced and hand quilted by Beverley Avery, also won First Place and Reserve Champion ribbons. Below is a closeup of some of the hand quilting lavished on this large quilt.

"Sand Devils" was designed by Judy Nediermeyer, pieced by Marilyn McCord and quilted by Elaine Brown. It received a Second Place ribbon.

"Lillies for Ladies" was designed and appliqued by Amanda Araujo and quilted by Karen Preston. It also received a Second Place ribbon. My daughter-in-law Heather told me that Amanda and Karen are a mother-daughter quilting team; she works with them at the hospital.

"Feathered Star" was pieced by Jill Fischer from Jackie Robinson's "Montana Star" pattern and quilted by Theresa Fetch. It received a First Place and the Grand Champion ribbon.

A closeup of the quilting, which was done on a longarm machine.

"Third Star" was pieced by Essica Williams and quilted by Karen Baxter.

Yummmm.....wouldn't you love to be a judge?

These two knitted items were entered by Heather's aunt, Linda Morris.

Zoe got to make a new friend while she was riding the pink elephant....

...while Sid and Vanessa chose to ride this contraption that threw them in all sorts of directions and elevations at a pretty speedy clip. Neither of them were walking very straight when they got off!

But that's part of the fun of going to the fair, right?
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