Tuesday, January 29, 2019

Quilt Pattern

This is my OMG for February.  I would like to finish all of the blocks this month.  I may be able to get the sashing in too.

With all of the hiking and driving and shopping, apron making and general travel stuff, you'd think there wouldn't be time to work on a quilt.  I still crave quilting and I am inspired when I visit fabric shops.  After I visit a shop, I have to pull out my quilt project and sew a few seams. I am working on another quilt pattern for my 10 inch squares. For this pattern, I chose the Citrus Fruit Palette half stack from Robert Kaufman.  Half Stacks have 24 ten inch square pieces.  There are two of each color in the stack.  I really love these colors with the white background.

You can see I have blocks in all stages of completion including uncut triangles 

This is a half square triangle pattern.

Patience is a virtue and you become very virtuous when making this quilt.  I pressed all of my seams open to reduce the bulk on the back.  Pressing seams open takes time.

I would like to finish this quilt by the end of February but it's hard to be inside sewing when it's so warm and lovely outside.  I am creating the pattern for this quilt and will post the finished top when the pattern is ready.  I haven't named this quilt yet-I'm terrible at naming quilts.  Any suggestions?

Linking to: Midweek Makers, OMG, Finished or Not Friday, Can I Get A Whoop, Whoop, Off The Wall Friday, Oh Scrap

Monday, January 28, 2019

A Walk In The Wash

There is a wash that runs along the side of the Catalina Park.  A wash is a dry sandy creek bed that relieves the pressure if there is a rush of water from the mountains due to snow melt or rain.  You mustn’t walk in a wash if it’s rainy.  There has been nothing but sun for days and no rain is eminent so the wash was a great trail for a morning walk.  This wash is heaven for the birder.  There are birds everywhere.  

My husband is kind of a birder.  He loves to find the local birds on his Sibley Birds App.  This is a great app for the birder because it has photos and information about birds and also has a recording of their call so you can call birds closer for a better view. The mountain views in the Catalina State Park are amazing.

 Western Bluebird

The yellow birds are Lesser Goldfinch and the gray bird is a Female Phainopepla.

Male Phainopepla

 Female Phainopepla 

  Gila Woodpecker

Ladderback Woodpecker

You will also find lots of tracks in the wash. These may be deer tracks or Javelina tracks.

Not sure what these are.

Sunday, January 27, 2019

Cactus Quilt Shop

I encourage everyone to spend some time in Tucson, Arizona.  It is a sprawling city with a little something for everyone.  If you visit at the end of January, you can take in the gem show in South Tucson.  We have enjoyed looking at rocks and gems several times, however this year, we spent all of our time in North Tucson at the Catalina State Park.

There is a little fabric shop near Catalina State Park that really is a must-visit for quilters or quilter wannabes.  The Cactus Quilt Shop has an awesome selection of cotton and cotton batik fabrics in all colors of the rainbow.  The shop also offers regular classes so if you know you will be in the area, you can look at their class list on-line and you may find one you would like to sign up for.  The classroom has sample quilts for the classes they teach.

I stop in this shop when I’m in Tucson and the husband and wife team that owns the shop have always been there to welcome guests and be very helpful.  They started the shop in 1996 and have built it up over the years.  I understand there were several quilt shops in Tucson at one time but now this one seems to be the only one that remains in this area.  When I visit, it is always full of shoppers buying just the right fabrics for their next projects.  

This one was hanging in the classroom.  Look at all of those little pieces.

You will find all kinds of Southwest and cactus themed patterns in the shop.  

If you are a cat lover, you will need to check out the kitty corner, which has more than 100 bolts of cat themed fabric.
 There are samples everywhere and you leave with the feeling that you just have to go home and sew.

 If you are in Tucson, give yourself a little treat and stop in this fun quilt shop.

Linking to:  MCM, Monday Making, Moving it Forward  

Saturday, January 26, 2019

Pusch Peak Linda Vista Loop Trail

We found the Pusch Peak via Linda Vista Loop Trail on our Alltrails App.  It was close to our campground so we decided to give it a try.  The Linda Vista loop is 2.2 miles and it is a very easy trail.  

At about the 1.1 mile point in the trail there is a spur trail, which is the Pusch Peak trail.  It is not marked so you need to be on the lookout for it.  This trail takes you to the top of the mountain.  The Pusch Peak trail was steep and narrow with a total gain of 2000 feet in 1.5 miles.  I wouldn’t climb this trail if you have a fear of heights, aren’t sure footed or have health issues.  It is pretty steep.  The trail is not marked but it clearly is a trail so you won’t veer off and get lost.  The trail ends between the small hump and the larger hump on the right side of this photo.  The ravine runs along the the side of the trail.

 Can I make it? Yes I did.

I slid down the rock on the way back just like my 1 year old granddaughter goes down stairs.  

 This is a great view of the top of an outcropping, whose peak was about 2/3 of the way up the trail.

And a view from beside the same outcropping with Tucson below

 There were lots of Century Plants in the ravine along this trail.  Contrary to the name these plants flower after 10-20 years of growth, not 100 years. 

I wish I had a better camera for this shot of a rare sighting of the Magnificent Hummingbird.  This is a male bird.  It looks black but the feathers are actually a dark green. 

The views are spectacular! If you are looking for a hiking trail in Tucson, I highly recommend this one.  You can hike or run the 2.2 mile Linda Vista trail or if you are more adventurous, you can climb the Pusch Peak trail.  

According to the Alltrails app there is plenty of parking, however we found this not to be true.  There was a very full, smaller parking lot when we arrived at around 11AM.  We had to wait for people to leave to get a spot.  When we returned to our truck at about 2:30 in the afternoon, there were open parking spaces.  I would recommend going early or later in the day if you want parking.

Friday, January 25, 2019

Catalina State Park

Catalina State Park is one of our all time favorite camping spots.  We aren’t the only ones that love the park which makes it the most difficult park to get reservations for.  We stayed in Catalina several times in your 11 years of Southwest travel and in the early years, you could drive up and there would be a place to stay for a couple of days.  Those days are over.  The opportunity to reserve a site opens 6 months in advance of your visit.  We went on-line to make reservations 5 months in advance of our travel and there were very few opportunities for more than a one night stay.  We would stay for the two week limit if there were openings.  We were able to find a site for 3 nights and we booked it right away.  

We actually boon docked in the overflow parking lot the night before we moved into our campsite so we were able to stay for 4 nights total. Overflow parking costs $15.00 per night.  There are no hookups but there is a very clean bathroom/shower room very near the area.  

The campsites offer electricity and water.  There is a central dump station for your gray and black water.  

Why do we love it here?  There are so many reasons and one of them is location.  When you are in the park you feel like you are in the wilderness but the city is very close.  You can hike one of the many trails in the day and go out for dinner or a movie in the evening.  

The mountain views are incredible.

Trails are everywhere.  This park has many different trails and Northern Tucson has an amazing number of great hiking trails just a short drive away.

The campsites are very private.  There is a lot of room between campsites and there are bushes and trees between them in many spots.  

There are birds everywhere, which means birdsong everywhere.  This is a great spot for birders.  If you visit, bring your bird feeder and the birds will come to you.  

If you have a horse, this is the spot for you.  This park caters to the horseback rider with facilities and great trails.

 These pictures are for my granddaughters.  They love horses.

Isn't he a sweet boy.

Look at this, a place for you and your horses to live.

Thursday, January 24, 2019

The Bernina Connection

If you are ever in Phoenix, Arizona, you must stop in the Bernina Connection fabric shop.  One word describes this shop...COLOR!  

You will find a great selection of Kaffe Fassett fabric and...

OOLALA.... Tula Pink

 There are lots of kits and pattern books.

I need this pattern!

And guess who just happened to be teaching a class on the Bernina Q24-Amanda Murph!  I snuck a photo.  Behind Amanda is the embroidery section of the shop.  The reason I stopped here was to get some tips on the Bernina 700 embroidery machine I purchased in December.  I am new to embroidery and am always looking from tips from the professionals.  The Bernina Connection has a full range of colors of Isicord Thread, embroidery patterns and stabilizers for every project.