Posts Tagged ‘visit’

Texas Trip

Now coming up on 2 weeks ago, I flew to Texas to meet my dear friend, Heather.  We’ve been online friends (we met through our homeschooling connections) for around 5 yrs and this was our first time to meet in real life!  It was as fabulous as I expected; I cried to see her and I cried to say good-bye 3 1/2 days later.  It was just wonderful!  This was also my first visit to Texas!   🙂    (After IL had changed to fall-like temps, I was very glad to have summer back while there!)

Heather was a terrific hostess!  Honestly, we could have hung out doing a whole lot of not much but talking but she took me to some amazing places!  As they are just in the US for a few weeks visiting, mostly they were with her MIL & family but I also met  her mom and a dear friend of hers.   Of course, we still acted like a 3 night slumber party and kept sleep to a minimum.   🙂

The first night we exchanged gifts and she showed me her current quilting projects!  That was so much fun as we’ve shared photos and chat about the projects since their inception.   Heather is a hand-piecer (but just wait now!) and is self-taught.  Somewhere in there she also pulled quilt designer out of her hat!  I think with her location, she has limited access to the patterns as we here in the states have, so she works from her own ideas.

The next day we spent it with her dear friend, Robin, who is now a new friend to me as well.  All the kids are great friends and were thrilled with another day to be with each other.  Robin is a quilter as well.  I took these photos of Heather’s projects as she showed them to Robin.

Clockwise: pattern for Radiant Stars, fabric in Heather’s colorway for Radiant Stars (blues, golden yellows, silver grays), 2/3 of a new baby quilt of her design, and 1/3 of a quilt for her oldest that will include his own comics.

It was fun to have a photo op in Robin’s backyard later in the day —

I’m not usually such an agriculturist but the fields of cotton were a first for me and their normal trees are not what we have either.

The bottom right tree is a pecan tree!  Yummy!!  Especially considering that I just paid $10.99 for a pound of pecans!   I can’t imagine how wonderful a tree in my yard would be!  These trees & the kids are all at Robin’s house.

Another day we drove to Stewart Beach in Galveston at my request to see a beach on the Gulf.  Beautiful, I exclaimed!  However, they live a country with the top 10 of the world’s best beaches so were surprised at my delight!  (I think it has been about 8 years since I’ve been to a beach. *sigh*)

Yes, this is embarrassing that my hair is ALL over but I loved the photo with the 2 of us.  I learned that next time I’ll aim to get more photos of us together!  We were having too much fun!!

I was surprised and excited that our hotel was just a few blocks from Johnson Space Center!  I never thought I’d get to see that!  I am much happier with free and avoiding tourist traps and was thoroughly delighted with the free walking tour of Rocket Park!

And yes, even tho Houston should have one of the official shuttles, this one above is just a replica.  Seems silly that Houston missed that lottery!  The building at Rocket Park housed Saturn 5 and it is even larger than I’d ever imagine!  Just stunning!  The far wall was lined with information and photos on all the Apollo missions.

My flight was early evening on my last day but I was glad we could still do fun things that day.  First up, we went to what will be her local quilt shop and she had classes for a new sewing machine!  She’s never sewn on a machine and had the purchase and class all arranged for a day she was there.  I’m so excited to see how fast she cranks out quilts now that she has an electric needle!!

The sewing machine dealership is just  a piece of a very nice & large quilt shop!  Of course, I found something to bring home!  🙂  I’m thinking of using these fabrics to make 3 Swoon blocks (also in photo) for a large table runner as each block is 24″.

After lunch, we visited her paternal grandparents and the Indian gallery they own.   I brought home a pair of turquoise earrings in a silver setting.  That meeting was special; Heather is close to these grandparents and our visit was a surprise!  🙂

We said goodbye at 4 that afternoon and I flew home.   A bit late on arrival and Phil & I got home just after midnight!

It was a fantastic trip but with all good things, I was sad to have it end.  Soon, Heather will be back home and we’ll be back to regular emails and occasional phone calls but all with a deeper friendship having spent these days together.   Thanks for the great visit, H!

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Weekend Visitors

My nephew brought his wife & 3 littles to visit the farm this weekend. Josh tractor ride Josh got to ride with Uncle Phil to another farm to take feed to the pigs!  Delightful!!

josh & sam visit nina

Josh & Sam visit with Nina.

lucy snackLucy was quite good at feeding herself.  It could be I’ve just forgotten milestones & ages but she seemed to do well for 21 months.

reading with lucyI was talking with K while the kids had baths. However, once Lucy was out she backed down to me with her book.  It was fun!! 🙂  She brought a book for olders so we paraphrased.

Saturday a.m. they got to see little & big pigs and Josh had his tractor ride.  In the afternoon, they played out by the swing set & took a walk.  Uncle Phil was working in the shed and let Josh have another ride.  This time Josh got to steer which sounded like a huge hit to him!!  His dad said he wouldn’t be driving for a long time yet.  😉

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Walked 832 miles

Well, it felt like it!!

On Sunday, we went to see K for a visit without any moving.  🙂

We picked her up & exchanged pkgs at her apartment.  She had odds & ends to send home and we had food.  🙂  Onions, tomatoes, and peppers from the garden plus stew & bread from the freezer.  Gma M sent a crock pot & some etc.

Then we drove with her directions to a nearby parking garage since street parking is INSANE and we don’t have a parking sticker.

Then we started walking.


& West  (the quilt shop wasn’t open yet!)

& South

and then found a spot for lunch.  Her neighborhood is so cute & beautiful it wasn’t painful (yet!).  We all enjoy seeing the homes there.

Then back to the apt to drop off the leftovers for her frig.

After this stop, we headed to the lake, just 4 blocks away.  Once there we sat and enjoyed the view and the time to chat again.

K & Phil

sitting at the lake front


downtown skyline from a bridge we crossed



Then we backtracked a bit and walked by these gardens on the way to the zoo.


The crowds were immense as we walked into Lincoln Park Zoo.  (free admission)  I was surprised to find the lions napping outside.



K thought this direction to the left would take us to the giraffes.   The only reason to go to a zoo in my book.  😉   We went passed polar bears & a rhino area with no rhinoceros, then passed a juggler attracting a crowd.  Around another rhino area and to a dead end!  😦

However, THERE at the side of the dead end we found them!!  🙂



We were at the wrong end of the building to see them from inside but this was a great view!


I was satisfied so we then headed to the conservatory!  Just fun to see all the various plants and their beautiful blooms!!

DSCF4638The “bloom” on this plant must have been a foot long.  It looked like plastic since they were so shiny & smooth!!

DSCF4644The orchid room was AMAZING!!!  I could use a nice orchid planter like this.  🙂  (hint, hint to Phil’s Uncle Bus 😀 )

DSCF4645I should have had Phil put his hand in the picture.  This bloom was 2″ at the most.  Darling and the plant was covered in them.


We walked back on a different street and K showed us this little shop she had found another day.

DSCF4655It wasn’t open this day or the day that K walked by the first time.  We enjoyed looking in the window.  Finally saw someone was inside.  It could be an alteration shop especially since it is next to the dry cleaners.  But the mixed media dress form decor in the window was quite intriguing to me!  🙂

We walked back to K’s apartment as by now I thought my legs were going to fall off!  I laid down and K & Phil went for cupcakes.  The cupcakes were so pretty I should have taken pictures!!  They enjoyed them!

We rested a bit and then I knew if I wanted to try the quilt shop, there wasn’t much time so we walked 4 blocks over & 3 blocks up to get there.   Only shopped a bit and then back again.   (Darn cute shop with lots of the more modern fabrics!!  K & I could have spent a TON of money!!!)  I just got a FQ bundle and K got a single FQ.  (I just read on their site that happy hour is  W-F from 4-7 p.m. with 20% off!!  WooHoo!!  I may get that extra border fabric yet.  🙂 )  There is a yarn shop around the corner and it was fun to gaze in their windows, too!

After she did a quick change, we drove her for evening church and then headed home.

And I calculated this time… it is 125 miles door to door.  🙂

Please pray with us for more work hours to come her way!  Specifically for an interview for a FT job soon.  Thanks!!

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