Monday, May 28, 2012

BERYL BE GONE !!!!!!!!

No Happy Memorial Day around here.

We are in the midst of almost hurricane Beryl - AACCKKK - this storm came from no where.  I am working today since Memorial Day is not a holiday in our company.  I wish I could capture the tremendous howling wind and waves crashing over the sea wall in front of the historic home where I work.  It is quite a site to behold.  These photos were taken about 2 hours ago and it is much worse now. I have been here since around 9am and the wind has definitely picked up again. You can tell that during the last high tide the water came over the sea wall and flooded into our parking lot.

These shots are taken on the veranda outside my office.

 You can see where the water has come over the sea wall in this shot
Here you can see some of the debris that floated off the river in the high tide and wind - I intend to leave before the next high tide comes rolling in.

Just so my post is not all gloom and doom - here are some fun photos from our rug guilds annual hook-in last Saturday.  We had 25 members and guests attend and that was a pretty good turnout.  Unfortunately we did not have that many finished items displayed but here is a few.

Isn't this 3 D pumpkin cool - DK Becky was working on it at the St Simons Island retreat and it was nice to see her finished pumpkin.  It has a real pumpkin stem - I would love to do a set of these for a fall centerpiece.

I think this is an osprey which was hooked by a guild member - too bad I cut off her hawk next too it.

I'm not sure whose turkey this is but this is a neat seasonal rug and I love the pumpkins in this one.

Isn't this octagonal rug gorgeous - I'm pretty sure it was hooked in a 3/4 cut

This stunning WIP is a scene from a Vermont village.  The maker is a member of our local guild and she is toying with donating this magnificent rug to the local historical society which is actually one of those buildings.  I'm sorry it came out upside down and I did not correct it before I posted the photo.

I wish I could add an updated photo of the angry river now 3 hours after those photos I took this morning - it is really churning out there.

BE GONE BERYL - take yourself back out to sea.

Monday, May 14, 2012


Monday Monday - who wouldn't love to be transported back to the innocence of the 60's.  I didn't mean for this post to become melancholy but for some reason I am having a blue Monday. 

We had a wonderful Mothers Day yesterday and I hope all of my blog friends who are mothers, grandmothers or were fortunate enough to celebrate the day with your mother enjoyed it as much as we did.

We had brunch at the beautiful and historic Club Continental which is about 10 blocks from my house.  It is a wonderful old estate home which encompasses 27 acres on the banks of the St Johns River.  The Italianate mansion was built in the 1920's by the Palmolive Soap family and is still owned today by the great granddaughter.  You can see the history of the club on the website if you have any interest.  I am so pleased there is so much of Florida's early history right in my own area.  When you enter the gates you feel like you have stepped back into old Florida - the 300 year old live oaks heavily draped with spanish moss - it just beckons you back to an earlier time.

Here are a few photos we snapped yesterday after brunch.

Mom and I are standing in front of the Club Continental - the courtyard includes lovely landscaping and a circular koi pond surrounds this island we are standing on.

This is my little family

 I don't know what my dad was doing - I did take another shot but my mom was looking goofy in that one so I opted for this one since she looks good and Jody looks good. 
A beautiful fountain dedicated to the memory of Caleb Johnson Massee - one of the recent owners of Club Continental who passed away in 2010.  You can see the beautiful live oaks surrounding the circular drive.

Here is a shot from that fountain back to the mansion - check the website for some much better views and shots of the interior.  If you are ever in this area - they have suites available to the public and it is the site of many weddings and other functions.

 just one parting shot of a beautiful shawl I started a week ago.  It is Saroyan and the yarn is Malabrigo Rios for any knitters out there.  It has a beautiful leaf border - if you look closely you can see it.  I thought it would be hard but if you keep careful row notes it is not hard at all and I love the colorway -  Indiecita
Well friends - I almost never do a Monday post - Working full time - Monday is usually a drag day - getting back into the work groove.  However after writing this post and looking over the photos of my dear family - I don't think I am having a blue Monday any more - I think I am having a really "blessed" Monday - I have the dearest Mom in the world - we share so much - I am so blessed to see her often - she is not only my mom but my best friend.  So this post is dedicated to her and to all the great moms out there.  Love you Mom !

Sunday, May 06, 2012


Last weekend the No Fl Rug Hooking Guild and a few non-member friends made a short trip to Epworth by the Sea for a weekend of rug hooking, knitting, needlework, eating, sharing, laughing, shopping, eating, laughing and relaxing by the low country marshes. 

We were housed in top quality hotel type accomodations and just a short walk away from our hooking room which was full of natural light with a restroom close by. Just across the road was the dining hall - all locations had stunning views of the intercoastal waterway and marsh birds abounded. Sunsets not to be believed and balconies in each room overlooking all of the above. My mom and I shared a room and I think a wonderful time was had by all. I think we are all wanting to go by there again for another retreat or perhaps a workshop with a teacher.
Epworth is a Methodist retreat center and here is an excerpt from their website :
From Epworth, England To Epworth By The Sea... Epworth By The Sea is named in honor of the boyhood home of John and Charles Wesley, founders of Methodism. In 1784, John Wesley tenderly recalled his home by writing in his famous journal, "I rode to Epworth, which I still love beyond most places in the world." Though he is said to have ridden 250,000 miles and preached 45,000 sermons, Epworth still held his heart.

There is a lot of history on St Simons Island and the neighboring island Jekyll Island.  I have traveled there dozens of times in my life.  It is only a short drive from Jacksonville and makes a great day trip.  There are lots of wonderful restaurants and interesting historic sites.  Apparently Epworth is popular for weddings also as there were not one but TWO weddings held on Saturday.  Are any of  you familiar with Eugenia Price - she often wrote about the golden isles of GA and Savannah.  My DF Kerrie is a fan of hers and she said Beloved Invader was set in the area of where we were staying - I must try and read that one.  Eugenia Price also had a novel set in the area where I live near Fleming Island Fl and I found out from reading one of those books that the main family name in the book is a spanish name Fatio - that is the street I live on.  Another interesting fact is that our area is built on old plantation land called Laurel Grove.  I have seen photos of the plantation home that was in the area.  There are several structures pre-dating 1900 in the area.  Now I am rambling and getting off the subject of St Simons Island - I will have to do another post one day about the history of my area - I love historical facts and I just get lost in the subject sometimes.

Moving on to some photos of last weekend - here is the view from our balcony - just after sunset - I don't know why I didn't get any shots of the actual sunset
 I'm going to show all the projects that were being worked on by friends and fellow guild members.  I think I got everyone's projects except for one and I don't know why she didn't throw her's down on the floor.

This is DF Karen's rug - I'm not sure of the designer but I think maybe it was Maggie Bonanami from one of her books.  Karen most often hooks in an 8 cut.
Next is my mom's Polly Minick patriotic Uncle Sam hat.  I love the way it's coming out.  She could have finished that hat with just a few more hours work.  This was my own color plan using wool from my little red cupboard and some of Polly's wool.  You can't really tell yet but it has a confederate gray backround (why of course - we are intensely southern in case you didn't know) My maternal family is from south central GA for many generations and my paternal family is about 5 or 6 generations in NE FL. BTW - she is hooking it in a 6cut.

I decided to devote my time to the Angel Runner by Bea Brock - I got a lot done - I finished up two angels which only leaves 1 angel left to complete.  There are lots of fiddly details left to hook but those will actually be pleasant breaks from the backround. 

I love the backround - the color plan is by Diane Stoffel - I was very uncertain of all those blues and purples - not my fave but she said - just put it in - it will look great and I think it does. 

Next is DF Donna's beautiful BBD rug - I think it was from an earlier book of their's and is called Acorns and Pomegranates if I am not mistaken.  Donna was focusing on her border and got a lot done.  Beautiful colors in this rug.

Next is DF Starr's Church Ladies rug.  I love the neat fibers she used to enhance the hats and the stained glass border is such a neat feature.  I'm not sure who did the actual color plan but I think maybe it was Dianne Kelly.

 This was another focus of Starr's - she was learning fine shading and this is going to be a footstool cover. Pretty good for a first attempt but then with DF Katie mentoring - how can you go wrong !
 here is Katie's Jesus rug - she drew this rug herself and worked on it at a camp with Victoria Ingalls - it is amazing - all in a 3 cut.
Next is Nan's rug - it is pretty big - it has 2 tiny proddy mice - can you see them??  I think at least some of this color plan was by Diane Stoffel.  It photographs beautifully.

Another first attempt at fine shading is Sheila's chair seat - She made great progress on this chair pad.

This amazing rug is another Bea Brock design - Barn Symbols I think is the pattern - JoAnne started this huge rug in January - can you believe it and she works full time also.  Another beautiful color plan by Diane Stoffel.

Here is first rug by Michelle - we were happy to have Michelle visiting with us - she works at a local quilt shop and is a new hooker.  This bunny design I believe is another original design by Katie Puckett along with the color plan by Katie.

 Another beautiful shot of JoAnne's rug showing all the details - she is basically placing all the colors herself and doing an awesome job.
 Next up is DF Kerrie's Cow Lady Sampler rug - it is a design by Susan Quicksall and this rug is huge - Of course Kerrie did not do all this work in a weekend.  Katie is doing the color plan for her and the dyeing of course.  We are so lucky to have her - she is an amazing dyer.
This is DF JoyceAnne's needlepoint - she was a guest and the only non-hooker in the group. JoyceAnne and I are in EGA together.  We were happy to see the amazing counted canvaswork she does.  This is a freebie design by Laura J Perrin a needlepoint designer.  she was using all types of stashed threads for these.

Here is a photo of the oldest church on the island.  I don't remember the original name of the church but it is now called Lovers Lane Chapel.  Some of us attended church services there on Sunday morning and it was packed to the brim.  It was a lovely little chapel inside.  I could see why it is sought after for a wedding location.

 A little closer shot.
The weekend would not be complete without a little stash enhancement - there is a wonderful yarn/needlepoint shop on the island - The Stitchery of St Simons - this shop has moved around a lot in the 10 years or so I have been visiting.  It is located on Frederica road and if you are ever on the island - you simply MUST pay a visit.  Bo's yarn selection is awesome.  It is definitely worth the drive from NE FL - I intend to shop there more often since we've lost 3 yarn shops from the NE FL area in the past year or so.  Her needlepoint and fiber selection is good also.  JoyceAnne Kerrie and I visited there  while my DM went antiquing with another group.

She had an awesome selection of Malabrigo yarns - I've been wanting the Malabrigo Book 3 - She also carries Manos yarns which are hard to find.  This is a skein of Manos Lace I snagged.

 Here is the Lakedale Shawl by Stephen West which is in this book - I have been coveting this since I first saw it.  My colors are not exactly the same as this but are close.

here is my small beginning on lakedale - I got a pair of new to me needle also - can't remember the name right now but they are colored wood circulars.  They are pretty nice for inexpensive needles.  I have been enjoying working on this shawl - It is an 8 row repeat for the body of the shawl then that pointed lacy border - I like to have a mindless knitting project on the go for when I am tired and just want to relax before bed.  I've done several other shawls with malabrigo sock and I think it is a nice yarn for the price.

Well - that concludes my retreat report.  Hope you enjoyed visiting with me today and seeing our projects.  I appreciate all your comments - please do come and visit often.