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Location: 1633 Birchwood Ave., Bellingham, WA, United States
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Thursday, July 31, 2008

Fabric-Etc's "Sweatshirt Adventure" Day 1....

Well, I am "off" for a few days this week! We left Bellingham Wednesday morning under cloudy skies for the other side of the hill - Eastern Washington via the North Cascades Hwy. But of course, I can't totally leave Fab-Etc behind, so I brought my Fabric-Etc sweatshirt that Betsy embroidered our logo and name on. I thought you might like to see where the Fab-Etc sweatshirt has been during my 3 day jaunt! (When we tried to retrieve a couple of pics from John's camera, we lost some of them because my laptop doesn't like his camera! We did re-create a couple from the Lake, but lost the Winthrop one - rats!)

We stopped on the way over at the rest area at Colonial Creek in Newhalem. Here's the sweatshirt in front of a large turbine used to make electricity so we can run our sewing machines, irons and sewing lights!

It was on to Winthrop where the sweatshirt had a good time wandering the streets and then had its picture taken in front of the "town hall"....make a picture in your head - ok?

We got to Lake Chelan, checked the sweatshirt in and relaxed for a few minutes. There were some interesting sounding places in the brochures outside our room, and since the Fab-Etc sweatshirt seemed up for some adventure, we took a drive around the north side of the lake to this great winery that had an outdoor barbecue. Somebody had a fantastic idea. First of all, there was this fabulous aroma wafting from the barbecue. They had covered the back area of the winery, put picnic tables inside and out, and then said, "Hey y'all come!" And they were! We had a fantastic dinner amongst the grapes and the families. We thought it was kind of like a church picnic, with the kids running in between the rows of grapes, and playing with one another on the hillside....plus the food was delicious, not to mention the Chardonnay. So, here's the sweatshirt enjoying the grape fields and a view of the Lake on the way back.

More sweatshirt adventures to come! (Yes, you're right....people did look at me a little funny when I pulled that sweatshirt on in 80 plus degree weather....but it was fun!) I can't wait to hear about the adventures happening at Fabric-Etc. I'll let you know what I find out this weekend!

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

"They say it's your birthday....."

One summer, our oldest son, Pete was playing at a music event at Laguna Seca Racetrack outside of Monterey, CA. So, John and I flew down, and our other son, Dave and our daughter, Lydia flew down also for a few days. It just so happened that it was during the week of John and Lydia's birthday - July 28th (she was born on her Dad's birthday). The kids were all staying at a motel closer to the venue and John and I were staying longer at a place in Seaside. Well....on the 28th, we showed up in their motel parking lot in the convertible we'd rented with the Beatles' tune, "They say it's your birthday...we're gonna have a good time...." blasting at way too many decibels! (What were we thinking?) Anyway, we proceeded to have a wonderful family day, and we DID have a good time! We didn't have quite that much fun yesterday, but it still was a nice day! (Next year, John's informed me that he's going to be singing "Will you still need me, will you still feed me....." yup, he'll be 64!

It was a good day at Fab-Etc also. I'm trying to get things in some semblance of order, because John and I are going to Chelan for a couple of days. I am making some progress, but not a lot (sorry, guys!) A few notions came in yesterday, including some silk thread in about 10 colors for you hand applique lovers. And Jan (not "our Jan") came in with this great table topper she had made using our Shop Hop block pattern - isn't it great?

Okay, I think the coffee's ready, so I'm going to go get some and get ready for another fun day in my little corner of the fabric world! Today is graduation day for Diane's Beginning Quilting students...they all did such a great job on their first project. Hope your day is fantastic!

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Featherweight Rx....

Yesterday was such a fun day! Dave and Sharon McCallum came and Dave taught the Featherweight Rx class. If you own one of these machines, do not miss the chance to take one of these classes if he's ever in your neighborhood. We had a delightful day spent learning the history of the machine and how to take care of it ourselves. This gentleman has thoroughly educated himself on the value, workings, history of the Singer Featherweight and communicates it in a humorous and educational manner. We had our machines taken apart and put back together again this afternoon. And mine even still sews! Here's a picture of it in front of the Block of the Month quilt...it's all greased, oiled, tuned up and ready to rock and roll! They will have a booth at the APNQ Show in Seattle in August, so if you're there, be sure to stop in. (I'm not so sure I will be able to attend, but our black and white log cabin quilt will get to go and hang in their booth again. In fact, it even gets to go to Quilt Market in Houston in the Fall....I should have pictures of it seeing the local sites - you know, kind of like the garden gnome pics?!?)

It's a pretty day here this morning. I'm going to do some much needed straightening around the house and then try and get some pots fixed up on my little patio area. Things weren't growing that well at the beginning of the season, but now I have some "volunteers" coming up in a planter or two that need some serious assistance before they get crowded out! I'm hoping to get the floor cleaned up in my sew area while I wash the ever-present clothes in the laundry basket. I need to do a little bill paying and find the top of my desk again. But I am going to take some time and just sit and read the Sunday paper outside too! Hope you all have a wonderful Sunday!

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Camille and Carrie...

We got a real treat today! Camille came in with this quilt she had made using blocks she got that her husband's grandmother made many years ago. She took Diane's Beginning Quilting Class almost 2 years ago and in her words was "hooked"! When she went to the Midwest last Fall, she got these blocks and brought them in to the shop to ask for ideas about how to make them into a quilt or quilts. It just so happened that one of my sales reps, Carrie, happened to be there. I got really busy at the counter, so Carrie and Camille continued playing with blocks, fabrics, and ideas. By the time I got back, Carrie had drawn a complete diagram for Camillle on how to set and border the blocks. Today, she brought the quilt in...isn't it fabulous!?! And what an heirloom. Needless to say, all of her kids want it. There are more blocks left, so she plans to make another couple of quilts for them and has a place in her home to hang this one. Great job, Camille and thanks, Carrie!!

We stayed busy today. Diane helped a Beginning Quilting student "audition" borders, and then got the Dear Santa hanging ready to layer up. She's also choosing some more fabrics for a couple of horse wallhangings by the same designer as the wolf one she has going - they should be fantastic! I played a bit more with my Sunbonnet Sue quilt - just borders left! And yesterday, Jan and I got almost all of the next BOM fabrics chosen, cut and ready to package - hooray! Harriet's coming in tomorrow and we'll whip the place into shape before the Featherweight class scheduled for Saturday.
I'm off to throw a load of clothes in and maybe play with Sunbonnet borders? Have a great Friday all!

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Summer, Santa, and Sunbonnet Sue......

Isn't it great to have summer? Today, we've been enjoying just sitting outside and watching the birds in the birdbath, listening to the wind chimes, enjoying the flowers and watching the grass grow. (At least after I went to the grocery store and replenished the frig and cupboards!) We did have to put the umbrella up on our little table when it started getting a bit warm though.

And because it's summer, of course we have lots of Christmas fabric at Fab-Etc! This is the panel and piecing around it that I tried to take a picture of the other day. It's still not a great picture, but you can kind of get the idea! Diane has been putting that together for us from a free pattern that comes from Clothworks. We decided not to put the large outer border on...looks good, don't you think? Come and see it in person, though, because it really looks a lot better than this picture!

And I have been playing a bit with the Sunbonnet Sue fabric we have. Lori came in on Saturday and showed me what she had come up with to do with those darling little girls and said I was free to do the same. We had some different "go with" fabrics and ideas, but thanks to Lori, I think I'll end up with a pretty cute crib-sized blankie!

Well, the pork chops are just about tender enough, so think I'll go peel some spuds and clean the broccoli. Maybe we'll take our plates outside and enjoy the early evening sounds! Hope your weekend was/is wonderful!

Friday, July 11, 2008

4-H....

Today is the second Friday of the month, so that means it's 4-H day. The 4-H'ers are getting ready to put their accomplishments from the year into the Northwest Washington Fair coming up in August. My apologies to Kaela, but for some reason the picture I took of her wearing her skirt is blurry! But I think you can "sort of" see it? (The picture I took of one of our "in progress" models turned out the same - who knows what I did!?) She's entering more than just her skirt, but she finished this today. And there's a picture of Izzie, who's hard at work on a jacket. I told her to look up, but I was definitely having a "bad digital camera day" and that one had her eyes closed! She's entering a skirt as well, I think. They have a wonderful leader, Joan, and a helper, Marcia who are extremely knowledgeable and just fantastic at helping these young people learn the basics of sewing. If you get a chance to go to the Fair in August, be sure to take a look at the sewing displays - we have some pretty talented kiddos in the county!

Well, I was going to show you a picture of the "Dear Santa" project that Diane has been working on, but it really is just a blur....rats! I'll try again tomorrow - ok?

No UPS or FedEx deliveries today, and I guess I'm kind of glad! Thanks to my great staff, things are starting to look a lot better around Fab-Etc. Tomorrow, I'll try and get a little more cleaned up and file some of that paperwork on top of the filing cabinet! The weather is supposed to be gorgeous this weekend... hope you get a chance to enjoy it. I might sneak outside if it gets quiet tomorrow and soak up a bit of Vitamin D. Have a fantastic weekend!

Monday, July 7, 2008

Feeling old....

Just a quick post...I am feeling like an old "boomer" at the moment. I just had the tv on while I was cleaning up the kitchen. Ringo Starr's birthday is today. I was never a HUGE Beatles fan, but they were a big part of my "60's experience"! Do you know how old he is? 68!!! I mean I guess I might have realized that, since I turned 60 this year, but....Ringo....68....how can that be!?! They all seemed so young on the Ed Sullivan Show....only a few years ago - right?

Okay, enough of my lament. Hey - we didn't get any fabric today! Just a box of Kwik Sew patterns. So, Diane and I played around moving some of the models and looking at some Christmas panels. Next I think I'll change a few of the fabric locations...just a few, Tracey - you should still be able to find most everything!

I'm making a receiving blanket and burp cloth out of some of the fun "boy-type" flannel we just got. And I cut out the new receiving blanket and a back to put that together too.

Tomorrow is Diane's 2nd class for her Beginning Quilting...should be fun. I'll be trying to tidy things up while the class is going on. Harriet will be flying home from her vacation tomorrow and I told her she wouldn't recognize the place, since it would be so tidy - that could have been a bit of a stretch!

Enjoy the gorgeous summer weather tomorrow!

Friday, July 4, 2008

Happy 4th of July....

Happy Fourth of July to all of our U.S. customers and a belated Canada Day to our Canadian friends! Hope your week is going well, either way! We got to go to the 4th of July parade in Bothell today. Our grandson, Lukas, has been named Police Chief of the Day in Bothell. The big "event" actually takes place in August, when he'll be sworn in by either the governor or her emissary. But yesterday, our daughter, Lydia and his brother Benson got to accompany Lukas for a tour of the facilities and a party where he got his "uniform" tailored down for a 6 year old and his hat, badge and other "goodies", including a cake for Chief Lukas! (If you go here http://www.ci.bothell.wa.us/dept/cm/PIO/bylines/2008/JulyAug08/
and read Page 1 and Page 3, you'll know more about it, although a few of the details aren't quite right.) Anyway, these are a couple of pictures from our day! Lydia, Lukas and Benson (Luke's 5 year old brother) got to ride in the car toward the beginning of the parade. Lydia said he was waving, blowing kisses and thanking people for coming! Our son, Dave and his wife, Nikki were there too, so we had a good time - with ice cream afterwards!
When I got home, I finished the overdue July newsletter, so John is putting it up on the web as I type this. That tells about most of the newest "stuff". I left a bit of a mess at Fab-Etc when I left on Thursday, so tomorrow, I need to clean up! I told the UPS driver he couldn't come any more this week, but he did it anyway! A couple of customers came in and figured out a cool batik flying geese quilt on the design wall on Thursday - it will be gorgeous!
Well, folks are jockeying for position by our house on Eldridge...we're not on the bay side, and there's a tree that obscures most of the fireworks, but it's always fun to get a cold drink and watch the festivities from the front porch! Hope you have/had a safe and enjoyable day! More fabric news soon!