Category Archives: Travel

Saturday Stuff

(…formerly known as Friday Five on Saturday LOL)

1. I’ve been on a little break — DidYaMissMe???? We took a quick little winter trip with some friends and TheFirstChild and SweetiePie to Park City, Utah. You know how I love the snow and we certainly weren’t disappointed — it. snowed. every. day.  I was in Heaven — it was Beautiful!!!

Thimbleanna: Park City

It was an almost perfect trip — I really need to learn how to ski. Headline: “Old Woman Learns How to Ski!”.

Thimbleanna: Park City

The girls pretty much summed up how I felt while we were there.

Thimbleanna: Park City

2. Since we were with friends I didn’t take any time to go to the usual places that I love. With one exception — I did a quick drive-by to The Wool Cabin to visit with Bonnie. Bonnie is such a sweetheart and we always have much-too-quick visits, but they’re fun. Bonnie has been knitting Little Cotton Rabbit’s fun bunnies and foxes with reckless abandon so I wanted to get a few tips from her and buy some yarn for some bunnies of my own. And look! Bonnie surprised me with a little lamb that she’d recently knit. Isn’t she adorable? I call her Lambie Pie and I LOVE her. Thanks Bonnie!!!

Thimbleanna: Lambie Pie

3. Speaking of lambs/sheep, I forgot to show you the adorable slippers that MyDadLovesMeBestSister gave me for Christmas. Aren’t they perfect? I wear them all the time!

Thimbleanna: Lambie Slippers

4. Speaking of footwear (how do you like these segues? haha) — while we were in Utah, SweetiePie and I found some wild shoes. The colors are so bold, we just couldn’t resist. You’ll be able to see us coming from a mile away!

Thimbleanna: Shoes

5. Now, back to reality. A dirty house and laundry. And the unfinished Tumbler quilt which is now to the quilting stage. Can’t say I’m enjoying zig-zagging my way down those tumblers, but it’s slowly getting done. Hopefully there will be a finish soon.

Thimbleanna:  Tumbler Quilt

And that’s it. Another few weeks blitzed by — it never fails to amaze me. Hope you’re having a great weekend!
XOXO,
Anna

A Mad Dash

Whew! I can’t believe it’s been over a week since I’ve posted! And here we are, knee-deep in September already — my VERY favorite month. ;-D

I do have an excuse. On Thursday of last week I zipped off to New York City for the weekend. It was a last minute trip (well, 2 weeks in the planning) and I went for a very good reason. To see Kellie, (Ms. Don’t Look Now) and her cute little family. When she first told me she was coming to the east coast and would I please come to visit, I just didn’t think I could swing it. But, the more I thought about it, the more I realized I really WANTED to go and I’m SO glad I did. I had THE. BEST. TIME. ever! When I got back home, I was appalled to look at my camera and find just how few pictures I had taken. IMHO, that’s the true sign of enjoying all the little moments and not worrying about taking lots of pictures. (So, these are just a few random shots.)

Thimbleanna: Piecing

Kellie hasn’t been to the last few quilt markets and I’ve really missed her. It was so nice to be able to catch up and visit. Kellie’s children are at such fun ages and we had a great time. I’m glad that I got to meet them when I did — who knows when we’ll have the opportunity to see each other again.

Thimbleanna: Piecing

We only had two days together. One day for Kellie and I to do some crafty/fabric shopping. And one day with the family. We walked, went to Times Square, talked, played in Central Park, walked, visited the Guggenheim Museum, talked, ate, took cabs, ate more, shopped more, walked more, talked more and saw Matilda. Which is fantastic, by the way, and I highly recommend it — especially if you have children. And then stayed up most of the night talking some more ’cause there just wasn’t enough time.

Thimbleanna: Piecing

My words really can’t do justice to how I feel about the weekend. I could gush and get all teary-eyed, but I’ll keep it short.   I feel so honored to have been included in a bit of their trip and to catch a glimpse into life with such a sweet little family. What a lucky, lucky girl am I!

I’ve been pooped today, but it was worth every little nod-off. Hopefully a little rest this week and then we’ll get back to some regularly scheduled programming. I have a Top 10 list to finish in just two weeks. Eeek!
XOXO,
Anna

P.S. I’ve really been enjoying the Camp the Pigeon Instagram feed. (@campthepigeon) I told you about him awhile ago, shortly after camp hatched from his little egg. He’s big and flying now and they’re letting him go outside. And he returns to his home! It’s really an amazing story and I thought you might enjoy it if you haven’t been following along.

#10 Visit the World’s Greatest Aunt

Check another one off of my 10 Things this Summer list.  Woohoo!

I’m back from a wonderful trip to Utah to visit the World’s Greatest Aunt.  We had so much fun — I wish family didn’t live so far away.   The trip kicked off with a bang — fresh off the plane, I stopped to have lunch with the fabulous Nanette.  I always love catching up with Nanette and this time I asked her to bring her British quilt along so I could SEE it in person.  Nanette is working on a new version of the quilt with a pattern and I can’t wait to see it.  (Sorry for the blurry picture — it was taken with my phone.)

Thimbleanna: Utah

Nanette, her daughter Shelbie and I had a fun visit and she gave me this super cute little zipper “cookie”.  Isn’t it adorable?  She also gave me a cute real cookie but I ate it before I took a picture — Nanette had more restraint than I did and she took a picture of it.

Thimbleanna: Utah

I spent several days with cousins and the World’s Greatest Aunt and we had lots of fun.  We painted a bedroom and played lots of hand and foot.  One of the highlights was visiting a nearby little town and meeting with Bonnie.  We had lunch at a local little restaurant and then Bonnie took us on a tour of the rock (I know you guys in the  Eastern part of the US call them stone, but in the west, they call them rock) house that she and her hubby have restored.  It’s. Absolutely. Gorgeous.  Words and pictures just don’t do this house justice.

Thimbleanna: Utah

We also got to see the famous rug that Bonnie recently finished.  I was surprised to see that it has more of a checkered-type pattern than a braided pattern.  Bonnie has promised to teach us how to make these pretty little rugs on a future trip.

Thimbleanna: Utah

And Look!  We got to see the famous feedsack quilt too.  Pictures DEFINITELY don’t show the beauty of this quilt and now I really want to make one.  Bonnie did such a gorgeous job on the stitching — it’s all hand quilted.  Bonnie has much better pictures Here.

Thimbleanna: Utah

What a treat to tour this beautiful home.  We all felt so special and Bonnie is just as warm and wonderful in real life as she is on her blog.  Our afternoon ended too soon, but not before we had a little excitement.  We were standing outside Bonnie’s kitchen door saying goodbye when a gust of wind came along and blew the door shut — leaving Bonnie locked out.  After a little searching, and by some miracle, Bonnie found a window that had a screen that hadn’t been fastened all the way.  After a few attempts with a ladder, we tried the simple tactic of me climbing through the window head-first and Bonnie giving ye ol’ rear end a shove from behind.  We laughed and laughed but didn’t manage to get a picture.  I can’t say for sure (being on the other end of the event), but I imagine it looked a little like this:

Thimbleanna: Utah

It’s a good thing I was wearing jeans LOL!  What a fun day we had!

I could go on and on about the rest of my trip, but I’ll spare you.  Here are just a few highlights.  A visit to Big Rock Candy Mountain for some white water rafting on the Sevier River.  It turned out to be more like a float-along due to the low river levels, but we still had a fun time.  And Big Rock CANDY Mountain — what more could you ask for?

Thimbleanna: Utah

Lots of bike riding — one of my favorite places was in an old pioneer cemetery.

Thimbleanna: Utah

A visit to the Golden Spike National Monument.  In all my Utah years, I’d never been there.

Thimbleanna: Utah

It’s the site where the Union and Pacific railways were joined in 1869.  Very Interesting!

Thimbleanna: Utah

A tram ride at Snowbird Ski Resort.

Thimbleanna: Utah

The views from the peak were spectacular.

Thimbleanna: Utah

Lots and lots of other fun and memories and the stuff of which vacations are made. And don’t worry, the World’s Greatest Aunt and I did manage to hit a few of Utah’s awesome quilt shops — nowhere near all of them, but enough to provide some inspiration. If you’ve never been to Utah and you’re a quilter, you’re definitely missing out!

It’s good to be back home — now, back to that summer list and catching up on lots of work around here.
Have a great weekend!
XOXO,
Anna

#2 Organize Some Iceland Pages on My Site

Hello, Hello! I’m still loafing around on vacation, but I thought I’d pop in and take credit for completing another item on my 10 Things this Summer list. I finally managed to organize some pages about our Iceland trip.

Thimbleanna: Iceland

You know, just in case you’re planning a trip to Iceland. Or you don’t have anything better to do and want to get ideas for a future trip. Just click on the travel tab up there in my header and it will take you to a button for the Iceland pages.

Thimbleanna: Iceland

TheManoftheHouse has informed me that we have a fabric surprise waiting for us when I get home in a few days. More on that later – I can’t wait! In the meantime, I hope you’re having a great week!

XOXO,
Anna

An Icelandic Yarn

Thank you for all your entries for the giveaway of A Quilting Life.  It’s been so fun to read everyone’s favorite cookie of choice.  I love that some of you stood up to me and don’t even like to snack on cookies while quilting — chocolate will do very nicely thank you very much.  And I was a bit shocked that some of you don’t even allow food or drink in your sewing room.  A lofty goal indeed — but not one that I could ever keep.  I’m too weak!  The giveaway is open until the 14th, so if you’re interested in the book and haven’t entered, go here.

So, before the giveaway, I promised to tell you the tale of my little blog meet-up in Iceland.  About two months before our trip was scheduled, I noticed a comment left on someone’s blog that was signed by “Berglind from Iceland”.  I was immediately intrigued, since I knew we would be going to Iceland soon, so I clicked on the link.  What a wonderful treat!  Berglind’s blog is just beautiful!  I immediately e-mailed her, told her that we’d be coming to Iceland soon and asked if she had any suggestions for our trip.  I was surprised and thrilled when she suggested that we meet and she would take me to a few of her favorite shops.  Wow!  What a fantastic offer!

We were going to be in Reykjavik on Thursday, Friday and Saturday, so the plan was for Berglind to pick me up at the hotel on Saturday morning and we would shop for 3 or 4 hours.  And then the flights-from-hell happened and our three days in Reykjavik were reduced to one.  I couldn’t ask my family to wait around while I spent half a day shopping with Berglind, so I e-mailed her to cancel.  I was SO upset — I love meeting local people when I travel and the perfect opportunity was slipping through my fingers.  Then, the brilliant FirstChild suggested that we add a day to our trip so I e-mailed Berglind again.  She was so sweet and so flexible — and I was VERY lucky.  Our meeting was moved to the following Friday, at the end of our trip, and even better, since our time together would be shorter, Berglind suggested that we meet at her house.

What a thrill for me!  I got to meet Berglind AND see her beautiful home AND get a tour of her sewing room.  I’m kicking myself for not taking pictures of some of Berglind’s beautiful quilts.  There were piles of them in several rooms.  I have no idea how she gets time for all her quilting.  (BTW, I’m very proud to say that Berglind is a Viking girl like me — I would expect no less, coming from the land of Vikings LOL!)   Berglind is just gorgeous!  She has four children — the oldest two were in school, but I was lucky enough to meet her adorable little four-year-old (almost five!) Arna and her new two month old baby boy.

Thimbleanna: Iceland

Isn’t Arna a doll???  I’m sure you can imagine that I wanted to take her home with me.  And look at her perfect little braid!  (Oooh, and I hope you’re noticing those beautiful quilts too!)

Thimbleanna: Iceland

After a quick visit at Berglind’s home, we had to get down to business and go shopping.  We only had time for two shops — I had been to a few of the yarn shops (more in a bit) while shopping with my family, so Berglind narrowed our choices down.  She took me to see her favorite place that carries Tilda fabric — I had mentioned that I can’t get Tilda fabric anywhere near me.  The Tilda fabric is actually in a larger store — Berglind called it a stationary store, but it had a lot of craft items — it reminded me a bit of a small Michael’s — only with more atmosphere.  Here are the Tilda fabrics — ummmm, Yum!

Thimbleanna: Iceland

While we were fondling fabrics, Little Arna was on a mission of her own.  She spied some fun pink yarns — Berglind said she and her older sister love to make bracelets with them.  Clearly, Berglind is doing her duty to pass on the love of crafting to the next generation LOL!  How cute is Arna in her little polka-dot jacket?  I’m so sorry I didn’t get a picture of her full outfit — she was wearing the cutest glittery tennis shoes.

Thimbleanna: Iceland

Berlind’s other choice for me was the cream-of-the-yarn-shop crop, litla prjonabudin (sorry, I don’t know how to get those special characters out of my keyboard.)  (The link will take you to their facebook page — you might not understand the language, but I guarantee you’ll understand the pretty pictures!)

Thimbleanna: Iceland

What a treasure!  This is just a small little shop, but they had the most beautiful yarns.  And they were so helpful — of course I had to have a few souvenir skeins.

Thimbleanna: Iceland

Here’s the pretty display in the center of the shop.  And the whole time I was shopping, the perfect baby was sleeping (he never made a peep the whole time I was with Berglind) and sweet little Arna was sitting on a chair being an angel.  Seriously, she never made a peep either, except on occasion if I said something to her via Berglind.  She was so cute — even holding my hand in the parking lot.  Melt my heart!

Thimbleanna: Iceland

Our little visit was over much too quickly and it was time for Berglind to take me back to the hotel.  I can’t even begin to tell you how much fun I had — this visit was definitely a highlight of my trip.  I still pinch myself wondering if it really happened — what an opportunity!  Isn’t the internet an amazing thing???

Anyway, just in case you’re planning a trip to Iceland and you want to visit the yarn shops, I’ll quickly tell you about the other places I visited. (Btw, all five of the places I visited are highly recommended.) Two shops are in the main shopping area of Reykjavik.  The first place we stumbled upon was The Handknitting Association of Iceland.  Iceland is known for their Lopapeysa sweaters, made from Lopi yarn – the 100% wool Icelandic yarn.  The Handknitting Association of Iceland had a TON of sweaters (and mittens and hats and more) to buy and people were standing around trying them on.  We found their prices to be better than any of the other shops that carried sweaters. They also sell lots of Lopi.

Thimbleanna: Iceland

The second shop is Storkurinn.  Storkurinn is a lovely shop — it’s a little hard to find though.  I saw the sign on the street and knew immediately that it was a yarn shop, but there was no storefront.  It turns out that it’s on the second floor.  They had a great selection of knitting books and yarn.

Thimbleanna: Iceland

And even a wall of Amy Butler fabrics that eluded my camera.  There wasn’t much time in this little shop — I could have easily lingered longer!

Thimbleanna: Iceland

Then, the day before I met Berglind, when we were on our way back to Reykjavik from the southern coast of Iceland, I tricked convinced the family to stop at Alafoss.  This is the Lopi factory outlet in Mosfellsbaer – a suburb of Reykjavik.

Thimbleanna: Iceland

Lots and lots of Lopi in here.  And, of course, I had to indulge.  How could I not?  The average Lopapeysa sweater sold for around $150 – $200 — I could buy the yarn to knit my own for about $50.  Sold!

Thimbleanna: Iceland

Something Berglind pointed out to me in the store that had the Tilda fabrics was unspun wool.  I would have no idea what to do with this, but Berglind was wearing a pretty brown and white sweater that she had made from this type of yarn.

Thimbleanna: Iceland

So, that’s it! Now I REALLY want to go to Iceland on a knitting tour. Did you know they have them? I found a great write-up of one here.

Who wants to go with me???

XOXO,
Anna

And BTW — And I can’t emphasize this enough — if you’re not following Berglind, you should be. She has the most beautiful blog. She makes beautiful treasures for her family and she’s beautiful and I’m going to say Beautiful a million times in this sentence so you get the point!!!