Wednesday, June 29, 2011

For the Supernatural Fans

When the series, Supernatural, first premiered I failed to watch it.  If I remember correctly, it was on opposite another show in which I was already vested.

My cousins have recently remedied my oversight.  They own Supernatural on DVD.  We took a couple of months and watched the entire series through season five.  I now know what I'd been missing all of these years.  We're all looking forward to season six, which if history is any indication will be available on DVD in September.

On previous blogs, I've shown the fruit of Lori's creativity.  Now, I want to share Eric's (besides the many photos he's allowed me to use).  Eric creates musical mixes based on a theme.   His most recent endeavor is a mix based on
Supernatural.  The mix contains both music and clips of memorable dialogue.  It's a blast. 

Eric has made the mix available as a free download for anyone interested.  You can get it here.  Just click on the 59:44 beneath the mix cover to start the download.  I hope you enjoy it as much as I do.

Monday, June 27, 2011

Monday Miscellaneous

The Move

As part of my Favorite Things Friday post, I mentioned that my cousins and I were moving back to Kansas.  Who knew when I renamed my blog, The Gypsy Quilter, in reference to the two moves I'd made this past year, that there would be a third?  And you'd think with so much practice I'd get better at it.  The truth is so many things must occur almost simultaneously that achieving a feeling of organization and efficiency is next to impossible.  The process always involves muddling.  I suppose the one thing I have learned, is to accept that moving is barely controlled chaos, and not to get too uptight about it.

Due to the two previous moves, my stuff has been pared down.  What's left is going.  Not so with my cousins.  They've lived in their current house for four years.  I heard them exclaim to each other the other day, "How did we accumulate so much crap?"  I remember asking myself the same question when we were preparing to leave Pahrump, Nevada.  I could only smile in sympathy.

Even with all the hectic activity, the cats manage to keep us entertained.  Marko had to inspect this cabinet as it was cleaned out.

More on Taos:  Sights from the Town Square

I mentioned previously that nearly all of the buildings in Taos are adobe.  This garden was nestled in a row of adobe shops ~a florist, an antique store, et al.  We were especially enamored with the royal blue doors and window frames against the adobe.  It was an oft-used color combination around Taos.

Like many towns, Taos is home to a town square.  It contains a not insignificant number of shops ~ mostly tourist related.  Being thoroughly sheltered from the traffic, it's a great place to walk, window shop, enjoy the ever pleasant weather, and see interesting sculptures such as the one below:

Or decorations set out by the shop owners for simple beauty's sake:

We all loved the area so much that we toyed with the idea of trying to move to Taos.  But we've never seen it in the winter and for many reasons (related to why we are moving to Kansas), the time just isn't right.

Saturday, June 25, 2011

The Inspiring Colors of Taos

Color.  As we quilters, toying with color in all its various combinations is a significant part of the joy in the art.  I was blown away by the way color was used in Taos.  It wasn't that there were any new colors; it was it the way the colors were put together ~ the rusty tones, near reds, and gold paired with turquoise, teal, royal blue and occasionally purple.  This wall of pottery suns shows exactly what I'm talking about:

The photo above contains the more muted tones, but this one shows the same color combinations in vivid brights:

I came home inspired.  Now if I can just find a time to put vision to fabric....

(My thanks to Eric for again allowing me the use of his pictures.)

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Favorite Things Friday

Is it politically correct to refer to a person as a "favorite thing"?  Yeah, I don't know the answer to that, but have never been overly concerned about being politically correct anyway.  So yes, this week, my cousin is my featured favorite thing. 

Michelle & Lori
Lori and I were always close as kids.  We thought it was cool that we shared the same birthday (although she is two years younger than me).  Spent a lot of Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays together when we were very young, and time camping together in the summer as teens.

However, as life often does, it took us in separate directions as young adults.  Sometimes we were lucky to converse once a year ~ but it was always as if we'd just talked the day before.  Now in our 40's, we have finally remedied that situation.  We live together.  How cool is that?  We both enjoy crafty things (in fact, I've blogged about Lori's craftiness here and here), have a similar sense of humor, and the same feeling of responsibility toward our family. I could not ask for a better person to have in my life.  I feel very blessed.

Now we are embarking on a move back to Kansas ~ Lori, her family and I.  Crazy, huh?  She and I feel we need to be closer to our family.  Our grandparents, and both of our mothers are there.  They need our attention.  We are already organizing, packing, and planning a garage sale.  We make a good team. 

It's been a long time since I participated in Favorite Things Friday, but it's a real pleasure to read about everybody's favorite things, so I urge you to play too.

Monday, June 20, 2011

Monday Miscellaneous

Coming Together:

The New York Beauty quilt is coming along.  I'm currently hand-piecing the quarter blocks together to make the circular design evident in the picture below. I imagine I will hand-piece the entire quilt.  It gives me better accuracy.  However, when it comes to quilting it, I intend to reacquaint myself with my long-neglected Juki.

Taos, New Mexico Part 1:

Taos sits at approximately 6,900 feet and is well known for being relatively close to several wonderful ski slopes.  Not a consideration in the summer, but none of us ski anyway.  That said, Taos was a place we'd never been before, and seemed like a great escape from the summer heat of Texas.  We were not disappointed.  The daytime temperatures rose to the mid-80's and the night time temperatures hit the mid 40's.  Low humidity.

Nearly all of the buildings in Taos are adobe.  Not just the houses, but the businesses as well.  I was struck by how well the adobe buildings blend into the environment.  

Juniper House, Taos, New Mexico
This is the vacation home we rented.  Honestly, the price wasn't much more than you'd pay for a decent hotel, but instead of having a room or suite, we had a whole house.

Myself and Lori in our cheap Wal-mart hats

Juniper Street
We took an amazing walk around the neighborhood, reveling in the glorious weather.  The houses here sit on  the edge of town.

Juniper House, interior
We all enjoyed the Southwest architecture and interior design.

The entire back of the house contained floor to ceiling windows.  Here's a shot of the master bedroom from the outside.

The windows looked out on a beautiful backyard:

Eric photo-shopped this picture to resemble a painting.
We spent time a lot of time enjoying the desert air sitting under the ramada, making use of the grill.  It is the shelter you see in the background at the mid right.  If you look carefully, you'll note the hot tub in the mid left.  Mango Margaritas are a perfect accompaniment to hot-tubbing.  Ahem.  :-)  We made them in Solo Cups.  Class all the way!

Myself and Lori, looking at the reflection in the windows
My thanks to Eric for doing the photography on this trip, and allowing me the use of his pictures on this blog. 

 Next time:  Taos Pueblo

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Showing Off Mom's Work

I'm fortunate that other people in my life have been busy getting some quilting/crafting projects done, so I have something to share on my neglected blog.  Today, I wanted to share my mom's latest completed work.  She made the quilt for her cousin, Shirley, who was so instrumental in helping us make the transition from Nevada to Kansas last fall.

Shirley's favorite color is purple (a woman after my own heart), and Shirley's husband's favorite color is copper.  Yep, copper.  The man's an artist, so naturally his favorite color would not be anything generic.  The same day my mom and I nonchalantly extracted that information from them under another guise, we ran across the floral fabric you see in the border.  Decided the burnt orange shade in the floral was as close to copper as we were ever likely to get, and the floral became the focus fabric the quilt was built around.

Monday, June 13, 2011


It's interesting what a new perspective will provide to the quilting process.  I recently returned from a short vacation in Taos, New Mexico.  While I intend to blog on the sights, colors, and high desert air soon, the point of this post is how I came back refreshed, and ready to return to quilting in earnest ~ a feeling that I've been lacking for some time.

To that end, I've finished (provided I've counted correctly) hand-piecing all the blocks I need for a full-sized New York Beauty quilt.  It's nice to feel inspired again.