Monday, July 31, 2017

A Page Turned

Last weekend we celebrated my birthday. My youngest daughter arrived Thursday morning from Rhode Island, my middle daughter arrived Friday morning from Martha's Vineyard and Saturday morning my oldest daughter and son-in-law drove up from Boston for the day. We all went out for a nice lunch and then we went back to our house for cake and ice cream. It is always nice to have all of the kids home on the same day which is not always easy given their busy schedules. I enjoyed the day  so much and did not waste any time ruminating on how fast I am flying through my 50's.

It was a nice few days visiting with my daughters. Sunday my youngest headed back to RI and I hopped in the car with my middle daughter to go spend a few days on Martha's Vineyard. We had a leisurely drive down, stopped at some stores--Christmas Tree Shop, Trader Joe's and grabbed a bite to eat along the way. We drove onto the 7:30 ferry and headed upstairs to sit outside on the deck. Once we started moving it was a little bit chilly but it was a gorgeous evening and we enjoyed watching the sun sink gracefully into the sea.

The weather forecast was not promising but I did not let that dampen my spirits. I was looking for some relaxing time away. I had gone that Tuesday unexpectedly to the hospital for occipital nerve blocks to the back sides of my head for unrelenting headaches. I had been having one headache after another since Easter but they were getting longer, more intense and more debilitating. Monday I was down for the entire day so I gave in and called the hospital Tuesday morning and they got me in right away. I was skeptical but I noticed results right away. The next morning I woke up with no sign of a headache. Normally I would awaken around four or five in the morning with pain so severe I would have to get up quickly and begin my ritual of trying to stop it dead in its tracks or at least prevent it from becoming a day long event. So it was indeed strange to wake up the first morning after the injections and not feel any head pain. I spent the next four days trying not to overdo it, afraid that I might make a wrong move and somehow cause the headaches to come back.

The first night on the island,  I slept so well. The windows were open, it was raining ever so gently, with the nicest breeze.The sound of the falling rain, wind and one very pouffy, cozy comforter lulled me into a deep sleep.

The next day it poured. We braved the rain for a while, dodging in and out of the little shops in town. We ate lunch out and then decided to go back to her cottage because the rain storm was now more of a monsoon and my raincoat was soaked through. We curled up in her living room under the comforter and watched episode after episode of A Handmaid's Tale. Later in the evening my daughter baked us some fish and we enjoyed some wine and turned in early hoping for better weather in the morning.

The next morning we went for a long walk, did some shopping, and had a nice lunch. That evening my daughter treated me to my birthday dinner. We went upstairs to eat at the outdoor bar overlooking the water. It was beautiful. The sun was out, clouds were clearing and it was nice and warm.

My daughter sitting at the bar

Lobster Risotto 

I enjoyed the best lazy-style lobster dinner that I have ever eaten in my life! It was beyond delicious! And for entertainment we got to enjoy another sunset right before our eyes as we dined.

After the clouds moved away, the moon appeared in the sky. I really was in no hurry to leave. It was very relaxing sitting outside by the water.

The next morning my daughter dropped me off at the ferry for a 9:50 boat. It was a spectacular day and to say I was sad to be leaving was an understatement.

I dragged my overstuffed suitcase rather begrudgingly onto the boat and headed back to reality. It was a much needed restful few days and I got to spend some time with my daughter before she heads off on a two week Alaskan adventure in early August.

I got home last Wednesday from Martha's Vineyard and here it is the following Monday and I am still headache free.....I stopped being so fearful about overdoing it and in fact moved my piano into my living room yesterday, vacuumed, washed all of my living room windows and curtains and felt only a slight twinge of pain while looking up to rehang my curtains. I am hopeful that I have turned the page and entered a long and pain free chapter in the story of my life. So far, 58 is looking good.....this quote that I found on Pinterest sums it up nicely.....

"There comes a day when you realize turning
the page is the best feeling in the world,
because you realize there is so much more to the 
book than the page you were stuck on."

Taryn Malik

Have a wonderful week. It's a gorgeous, sunny, last day of July here in NH! Enjoy!

Sunday, July 9, 2017

Dreaming of Paris

Good evening all.....Hope everyone had a wonderful weekend! We have been having some beautiful summer weather, though yesterday was a bit on the humid side and we did have some rather strong thunderstorms. Today was exceptionally nice with lots of sun, blue skies and low humidity. I could take several months of this kind of weather!

 Yesterday I printed some pretty French floral graphics on to some fabric for use on some decorative hanging pillows. (Graphics purchased from French Paper Moon.) I was anxious to start the first pillow so this morning I cut pieces of lace and arranged it around the pretty pink flowers. Since it was so nice outside, I wanted to get some fresh air but later in the afternoon I returned to my pillow in pieces and began putting it all together. It went together well but took plenty of time to get it just right.

The pillow measures 8" x 6"

In addition to some beautiful laces from my collection, I also used torn strips of sheer curtain panels for the side bows and hanger.  The main fabric is painter's canvas which I love to work with as it adds a perfect soft, rustic touch to vintage projects, especially those with lots of luscious lace.

I am very pleased with the way it turned out. It was a "trial pillow" as I have three more copies of the graphic printed out on fabric. I am anxious to begin another.....

I love the Paris tag. Initially I had stitched "PARIS"  onto a canvas tag. I had cut the word out of some fabric that I had and I stitched it to the tag with some fusible fleece under it because I wanted it to pop. Once done, I did not like the look of the jet black print on the tag. It was just too dark for all the pretty pink and cream on the pillow so I decided to cover the tag with a piece of the sheer fabric to see if it would minimize some darkness in the text. I stitched it on and then restitched around the word "PARIS" to give it that quilted look. It worked just as I had hoped. I love the way it looks on the pillow with exposed stitching and of course the loose threads. I think it adds just the right amount of shabby to the pillow....

It can be hung on the wall, on a door knob, placed on a shelf or as part of a vignette or just about anywhere.....

I even like it right where it is--sitting on my dining room table! 

Tomorrow I will get crackin' on the other pillows. Hopefully they will not take me as long to complete as this one did. I have quite a stash of lace to choose from so I will challenge myself to make them all one-of-a-kind. 

Wishing everyone a great week ahead!