Monday, October 17, 2016

Teaching Debut

I had the honour of being asked by my guild, the Victoria Quilters' Guild, to teach my pattern, Waltz Around the World, at our annual Fall Frolic Workshop, this past Saturday.

I was very fortunate to have four quilts to display for my students, as my pattern tester Mae provided two of hers as samples which added to my two gave a lot of options for my students to consider when choosing their fabrics.

We went from 9:00 a.m. until 4:00 p.m. and during that time we managed to one (or more) of each of the units required to make up this quilt pattern.

Here are a few photos from our day:

Four samples and four colourways

Penny chose batiks.  Lovely!

Shannon also chose batiks.  Love them!

Teresa and Judy busy at work cutting

Glenys pressing her flying geese units

Nice contrast of batiks in these geese Glenys!

Blocks are starting to take shape.

Bold solids really define the shape of the block.  Love these.

When they start to play together on the design wall beautiful things happen!

Teresa is study colour placement.

Coming along nicely!

Ta da!  One is missing because Glenys had to leave early because of an impending storm and a ferry ride that needed to happen to get her home.

I had a great time and loved seeing all of the beautiful fabrics chosen by these ladies.  They each made the blocks their own and I can hardly wait to see the finished quilt tops.

Sew much fun for one day!


Friday, August 26, 2016

Salerno, Italy - August 26, 2016

We had a day at sea where Bonnie had scheduled her video workshops from Craft University.  Unfortunately we slept in and miss the whole morning segment. I think we needed the sleep more but missed being with our group.

I did manage to get a selfie with Bonnie in front of her Spanish Rose quilt (cruise project) and her unfinished Hexie project.

On some evenings, the group would gather (without Bonnie) and sew together on the cruise projects.  We met some great ladies from all corners of the USA and one from Norway and our other Canadian.

Sydney from Alabama showing me her technique for hexies to avoid seeing stitches from the front.

Where quilters gather, there is talk, laughter and friendship.

We woke up on the Amalfi coast and a lot of our group went on various tours/excursions to Pompeii, Sorrento, the Island of Capri, and Positano.  We once again decided to do a walkabout on our own in the little town of Salero.  Each excursion is upwards of $90.00 so we chose carefully and decided that when we could wander on our own and find local tours, etc. that we would do that.  What we wanted to avoid is taking an excursion hours away from port and being left behind by the ship due to snafus with the local providers.  Royal Caribbean will wait if one of their approved providers has a problem getting back on time, but if you happen to be late because you were on your own, you better have your VISA card ready to book a flight to the next port!  This caused me a lot of anxiety so we chose to do Rome and Venice and Florence excursions and the rest on our own.  And I'm so glad we did.

Here are a few pictures of Salerno.

Next stop is Rome (port is Civitavecchia), and 1.5 hour bus ride from port (hence using the approved transport).


Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Half day in Split, Croatia

We once again had the privilege of sailing into port in the daylight as we arrived in Split at noon on August 24th. We had just a half a day in Split so once again, we decided to just wander on our own to see what we could find.

But first we decided to have breakfast in the diningroom when we heard they serve Eggs Benny!

Unremarkable but I loved the grilled tomatoes every morning!

I had heard that Split was quite beautiful and while I agree that there was some natural beauty, in my opinion. Montenegro was much more beautiful.

Covered market

Bougainvillea - my favourite Mediterranean flower

Intrigued by their long, flat brickwork

Scored my son a shirt from the Game of Thrones shop

Promenade back to the ship

Tired roommate.  It was over 30 C

and this guy greeted us on our return.

Now we have another full day at sea ahead of us as we head south towards Naples, Italy.

Back to Italy we go!


Monday, August 22, 2016

Overnight sail into Venice, Italy

We left Montenegro at 5:00 p.m. and woke up at sea.  We had the morning to ourselves to sew, explore the ship (Brilliance of the Seas), read, or just relax and breathe in the Mediterranean air. I decided to sew on my hexie project from home.

Sewing at Sea

We arrived in Venice at 3:00 p.m. and we made sure to be up on the deck to watch the view of the City while we made our way to port.  It was surreal.

View coming in to port from inside the Solarium

We had to take a shuttle boat from the ship to the cityfront.  This whole waterfront of Venice is dotted with water taxis, shuttle boats and yes gondolas.  The one question I am asked by everyone who knows I went to Venice is, "did you take a gondola ride".  The short answer is 'no'.  It wasn't particularly appealing to me and at 100 Euros, the temptation to say "oh what the heck, let's do it!" wasn't there. I'd rather save my money for leather in Florence!

We booked an extensive walking tour with the lovely Monica for our second day in port.  Monica had a lovely Italian lilt to her voice and an equally excellent command of English.  We followed her through the Piazza San Marco (St. Mark) neighbourhood featuring Doge's Palace which was magnificent, over many bridges,  St. Mark's Cathedral, also magnificent, and finally the Murano Glass Showroom.

Doge's Palace

The Marzipan was incredible but we were forbidden from bringing food on the ship. :(

Small shops abound.  Waiting for Florence for leather shopping!

Bridge of Sighs is the solid higher bridge

After the walking tour, we had time on our own to wander and explore and eat before we had to take the shuttle boat back to the ship.

Spaghetti and Meatballs (quintessential Italian food).  Just had to!

New friend Suzy from Florida

Best creme brulee I've ever had! Period!
And that was Venice!  Unfortunately, we were so exhausted that we were in our cabin resting when we sailed out in the evening so we missed the city at night, fully lighted.  From our friends' photos, we realized we were sorry to miss this.

Next stop is Split, Croatia!

Until then,