Saturday, October 25, 2014

13th Birthday means an Afghan from Nana!

And on May 29, 2014 it meant TWO afghans because Max and Sam both turned 13.  We were in Seattle to celebrate however the afghans were just in the process of "becoming" at that time.  So bags of 13 items, each beginning with the first letter of their name had to stand in as a gift.  The way this works, and has worked for years, is that the birthday kid gets to choose their favorite colors and I make the afghan. I've encountered a variety of color combinations from pink, yellow and blue (Trisha, niece); red and black (Matthew, nephew); grey and black (Richard my godson), white (Shayna, niece), black, blue and yellow (Michael, nephew), red, white and blue (Jake, nephew).

Max has always loved red, black, orange and purple.  When I asked him what colors to use in his afghan he dropped the purple and focused on the red, black and orange.  I spent the most time finding just the right pattern to showcase his color choice and found it in the ripple afghan.  I love it and it will be very warm for Max as it is made of single crochets.

Sam hasn't wavered in all the years of having a favorite color so I wasn't surprised when he selected blue and green. I started this afghan when Bill and I spent a few days in Napa on a holiday (thanks to my sister Holly). You can imagine my shock when I realized I was making an afghan that would circle the planet.  It was HUGE!! So, I unraveled and started anew, perhaps two times before finally getting it right. Needless to say, it will keep my Sam cozy on cold Seattle days.

I love working with yarn and patterns and taking a color combination and trying to find the right fit for it. When we were in Seattle for Cousin Jeanne's 70th birthday, we got to celebrate birthdays and I finally gifted the boys their afghans....only five months late but just in time for the crisp autumn days.


Welcome to the Placemat Club Willa Chivers!

Three years old!!  The day came on October 20 and the package arrived in time.  With the advent of her third birthday Willa became a member of the Conlin Family Placemat Club. It actually feels like I've been making these placemats forever but they began when Max and Sam turned 12, or was is 11?  Don't really remember but I have one more to make in November for Olivia Belle.  The video of her opening the placemat is precious and you can see it here,

Friday, June 14, 2013

A Stitch in Time.....catching up on finished quilts

 A quilt made for my sister, Holly Marie.  We spent the weekend in Vino Bello, Napa and I placed the quilt on the bed, unknown to Holly, before going to dinner.  When we returned, it took several minutes to realize that it was there but she was so delighted.  I am delighted knowing that this bright quilt will liven up her bedroom and provide a soft resting place for her naughty cat.
A quilt for sweet Riley Sophia, my great niece.  I started it as a baby quilt and ended up being a third birthday gift.  Featured side-ways, the quilt celebrates the importance of the ocean in her father and grandfathers lives.

 Toni, a friend and co-worker, helped me put together this donation quilt for a shelter to provide refuge for women suffering domestic violence.
A quilt for my niece, Jenna Mae, to celebrate her graduation from high school.  Fun quilt for a special niece.

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Liquid Gold

 The day finally arrived when we "robbed" the hive and harvested honey.  It is important to leave approximately 80 pounds of honey for the bees to consume during the winter so we only gathered honey from the supers.  One hive had honey for the taking and we managed to harvest approximately 18 pounds of the liquid gold.

Imagine, it takes the lifetime of 12 bees to produce one teaspoon of honey!  Realizing that, the golden nectar becomes even more valuable than it
actually is for, believe me, this honey is

The gifts of beekeeping are many....I enjoy sitting and watching them as they come and go from their hive.  They do that little "bee dance" at the hive entry to advise their sisters of the best sources of nectar and pollen.  To help them out, I've started planting "bee friendly flowers" in our yard.  I think the bees struggle in Silver Springs to find enough nectar to keep them going.  I also want to thank my neighbors for contributing to the adventure by growing gardens and planting flowers.
 I enjoy watching the bees at their local watering hole, the bird bath and am delighted to see them returning from gathering pollen with their "baskets" full.

I think beekeeping makes me slow down a bit as I watch the bees and enjoy the flowers.  I am thankful for the honey they gave us this year and look forward to the next season.  Now it' s time to prepare for winter; put up the mouse guard to keep themrodents out of the hive, test for vorra mites and feed pollen patties. 

 I'm so very grateful for my dear friend, Debbie, who has walked me through my first year as a beekeeper.  Her knowledge is immense, her patience is equally as large and she shares without reservation.  So, as I write this my first beekeeping season is coming to an end and I'm thumbing through books... looking for more flowers to plant and anticipating the adventure of a new year.