Wednesday, August 30, 2006

The Old Bag Factory

This is where I went yesterday with my daughter, my niece, and one of my 'other daughters'. It's in Goshen, Indiana, in what was once an actual bag factory. My favorite shop there is Quilt Designs, which has the most amazing quilts I've ever seen. Unfortunately, I can't show you any pics of the quilts because they don't allow any photos in the shop. I can't blame them for that, as the owner of the shop designs the quilts herself, and they are quite costly, so I can imagine they want to protect their designs. If you ever get a chance, you really should stop by and see the quilts, they are quite lovely and the hand quilting is incredible.
There are quite a few shops at the Bag Factory, it's a fun day out and there are a lot of other places to see in that area of Indiana. We went to Das Dutchman Essenhaus
for lunch on our way down, and then went over to Shipshewana. We all took a ride on the carousel and visited a lot of the shops, and had a pretzel at Jojo's (a family tradition). Other than the weather, which was gloomy and rainy, it was a great day. Of course I had to stop by the Lolly's quilt store in Shipshy and see what was new on the wall of quilts. As far as my own work goes I'm working on unfinished projects, and need to make a couple of new purses for my daughter and myself, ours are getting worn out. This weekend will be fun, we'll be going to the arts and crafts fair in South Haven with our daughter & SIL, and their three nephews, they're always a lot of fun to have around.

Thursday, August 24, 2006

Work completed!

Yes, I've actually finished it, though I can't swear I won't do a bit more on the tree. I keep wanting to add a little something and then have to remind myself that the idea is to keep it simple. The last tree I did was about being on the edge of depression, this one is supposed to represent happier, simpler days. Simple pleasures with no dark clouds on the horizon.
It's hand quilted with some 3-D leaves, some embroidery and a little beading, just to give a little glint to some of the leaves.
I found out it's a lot faster to put my pics on Photobucket and then upload them to here from there. I was having no luck getting these to upload from my computer today, I tried changing the names, but it still didn't want to cooperate. So that's something to try if blogger won't take your pics.
I also made these postcards in the last few days for FFAC. I really like making these, I can try a lot of different things, play around with some fabrics I've been wanting to use, and they don't take forever to get done.

Sunday, August 20, 2006

Such an addict!

I wasn't able to post pics yesterday, and today my internet wasn't working all day. I had plenty of other things to keep me busy today, but it sure bugs me to know that I can't get on here and check my mail, the weather, read blogs &c.
I still have more pics from Shipshewana I wanted to share, this picture is from a restaurant on the top floor. The inside has a variety of vintage tables, it's so charming, and outside there are tables on the rooftop so you can look around the town while eating lunch or a piece of homemade pie.

I love the tree that they put in the stairway, wish I could show the whole thing, it's huge! There are 4 floors in the building and the tree goes all the way from the bottom to the top.
Can someone tell me how to make a link to another page using html so I don't have to type out the entire web address? This computer stuff is sure making me feel old, both my boys can do about anything on the computer, my theory is that that stole away with certain important brain cells when I was carrying them, that would explain a LOT.
Thanks for the tips about getting pictures to upload Dawn ! (See, I learned how already!)
Next week: the Bag Factory in Goshen!

Friday, August 11, 2006

Shipshewana Quilts

Go ahead...take a peek! This is one of my favorite shops in Shipshy. There are two Lolly's stores, one is a fabric store, and this one sells quilts, Amish dolls, and other assorted goodies. This window isn't outside, but in the hallway next to the store. Much better looking than normal windows, it gives it a homey look.

I want a wall like this at home! The quilts are so well made, skillfully quilted, and there's such a nice variety. One I really liked was made of cotton fabrics and then had flowers and leaves of wool appliqued on top.

This quilt is probably my favorite one out of this bunch, but don't hold me to that! I love the colors and the quilting is so nice on this. I believe these are all pieced and quilted by Amish or Mennonite women, I'll have to ask next time I'm there to be sure. I have to wonder about the Amish life, if it's as idyllic as it seems. It seems like it would be wonderful to live a simpler life, there's such an excess of 'bad' in the world, and sometimes I think it's too much. It's great to live in an age where you can know what's going on in the world in an instant, but when we're bombarded with so much tragedy every day, from our own cities to the far reaches of the planet, I have to wonder if it wouldn't be better NOT to have all that coming at us all the time. Maybe it's just me, I've read that some people have a much easier time 'blocking' things out and dealing with them as they come, and others don't have as much of an ability to filter things out, so they get 'overloaded'.
The one thing I don't like about the Amish way of life is that if someone has a special talent, they're rarely allowed to develop it, since it would be shameful to put any one person above the others. At least the Quakers were better in that respect, they encouraged their people use their talents, as they found it benefited the whole community. I guess there are exceptions with the Amish, though, when I was in the gallery in Shipshewana Tuesday, there were some paintings there done by a young Amish woman. The man at the gallery said that her family had some financial problems because one of the family was ill, so she was given special permission by the religious leader of the community to make and sell her paintings.

Thursday, August 10, 2006

Another day in Shipshewana

Tuesday was a good day, on the way back from Mishawaka I stopped in Shipshewana (Indiana) and hung around there for a while. It was a beautiful day, about 80 degees with a bit of a breeze, it would have been perfect if I had had some company. I really miss the kids on days like this, they used to go to Shipshy with me a lot.
The carousel is up and running, it's so great! I couldn't get a good pic, too many people milling about. See my February blog for more info on the artists.

Town was busier than I expected for a Tuesday this late in the year. Lots of senior citizens, I guess the younger families are home getting ready for school. There's a new bead store in town, very nice little shop, hope that one stays around.

I ran across this lovely sight on the way home. I just love finding a field of sunflowers, just driving along and all of the sudden there it is! I wish I could have all our fields planted in sunflowers every year.

Monday, August 07, 2006


Yes, I have run away to Mishawaka.
That would be the city in Indiana named for the legendary 19th century Shawnee Indian princess Mishawaka, daughter of invading Shawnee Chief Elkhart (His town is nearby). My DH left early this morning to work in Peru, no not THAT Peru- the one in Indiana. He called later in the day asking if I'd like to meet him down here, so I got up and got packing. I'm so tired of unpacking boxes and cleaning our post-fire home, so I was definitely ready to get out of there. I'm looking forward to a weekend away (I'm thinking Traverse City) but in the meantime I'm settling for an overnight in Mishawaka.
If you're ever passing through, let me tell you that they have a Houlihan's restaurant here. We haven't been to one in about 6 years, since we visited Minnesota, but have kept our eye out for one. Unfortunately, they didn't have the salad with the strawberries anymore, but they had excellent Stuffed Chicken Breast. It was stuffed with herbed cream cheese, and was so incredibly good. My DH got the Salmon, but he was lusting over my chicken after I gave him a bite. We go to Shipshewana pretty regularly, so we'll be skipping over here to try some more good stuff, there were a few other things on the menu I want to try. Wish I had taken my camera in, the inside was really unique.

We haven't tried the dessert yet, it's a strange looking strawberry cheesecake. I'm pretty sure it's appearance won't be a big problem for us.
We haven't had much time to look around, but it seems to be a pretty nice area. Everything around here looks brand new, I'm guessing that about 5 years ago this was all farms and corn fields. There are still a few corn fields mixed in that haven't been turned into malls or restaurants yet.

Thursday, August 03, 2006

A Turkey Tale

Look who was wandering around my back yard! We have turkeys in the woods around here, but have never seen one in the yard before. He looked like he was a bit disoriented, he wandered around for a while & headed back to the woods. After all the hot days, we finally got a break. It rained like crazy yesterday and today was much cooler, around 80 degrees, I think. The flowers are happy and so are the people!

The Cosmos are one of my favorite flowers, I love the color of the orange ones, and how because of their skinny stems they look like they're floating above their greenery.
I'm still emptying out boxes, hanging pictures, we have a ways to go on getting the house back in order. I've also been doing some quilting on the tree wall-hanging. I'll post another pic when it's done.