My Favorite Books

Saturday, April 29, 2017

Last post from Florida for 2017!

By the time most of my followers read this (although, there are some early birds aren't there!), we'll be on the road heading back to Michigan!  It seems like we've been here for quite some time (four months actually!) and yet it doesn't seem that long!  Although, with all the eating out we've been doing it does seem like a long time!  HA

So of course, we had to have a 'last 2017 supper' with the gang!

We had a great dinner (pizza!) at Dan Zano's in Ocala.  We ate there about a month ago and it was just as good  as it was the first time!   And we got one cheese pizza free!  So guess what we'll be eating Saturday night in the hotel room for dinner!

I have to say it's like leaving family when we have to say  goodbye to our Florida friends.  Hard to leave Michigan to head south and hard to leave Florida to head north!  But we are blessed and lucky to be able to spend the winter here.

A huge thanks to the gang and another hug and thanks to Jan and Larry for allowing us to 'move into' the OP home for four months!

I have to show what Jan gave me today...she asked if I wanted  a Publix shopping bag (I love, love, love Publix!). I said "OK" and look what she gave me!  Isn't it cute!  It's a key chain with a little bag!
Well, squirrel didn't get a face finished this week...but I did get lots done!

So he is now packed away in the car with all my other art and sewing supplies! No he's not a smoker...I just keep my beads in a cigar box!  Doesn't everyone!

Thursday, April 27, 2017

Last date afternoon at Harry's for 2017!

Usually before we head north, Bob and I make our last meal of 2017 be at Harry's (although, we do have two more meals out before we head north this year!  HA).  We packed some more clothes, I bathed the girls (face/legs) did my 1 mile cardio then after shower, we headed off to Harry's.

We did eat outside and we were fascinated with this palm tree!!  Just a beautiful day to eat out!!!  Warm but a slight breeze!  Just perfect!

We have to say this was our best meal ever at Harry's!  We started off with Fried Green Tomato's which were really good!  We usually get the fried pickles but we'll stick with the tomatoes for now on!

Next, Bob ordered the blackened red fish with corn grits...YUM!  Double YUM...I got to taste both and they were each fantastic!

I had the chicken tacos' with cole slaw and they too were delicious!  Best cole slaw I've had in years!

Of course we had to end the dinner with our favorite dessert!  Banana's Foster!  Again...the best ever! We've had their Banana's Foster bread pudding twice this year, which was also very good...but the old standby of just 'plain' Banana's Foster is wonderful!

We are full..pleasantly full...good thing I did 1 mile cardio earlier!  Today (Thursday) will be our last get together with the 'gang' for 2017...and Friday, we are hoping to meet up with Sally and Dan for dinner at the cafe here in Ocala Palms.

Our winter is coming to a always, it is bitter sweet.  We do miss our friends but we are both looking forward to getting back home for our home, family and friends.  Bob is already setting up golf times for the 1st week we got home!  Some things never change!  HA

Monday, April 24, 2017

Family day at Cedar Key

A week ago, Bob and I headed out to Cedar Key with the girls!  The weather was the 80's with a mild breeze and beautiful clear sky.  Cedar Key is over an hour from us but girls travel well and were ready to walk when we arrived!  After parking the car, we walked up to the pier where a lot of folks were fishing.

The birds were diving in the water to gather the leftovers!
 Bob took this picture of a pelican resting!

Of course, the girls took cover under the bench to take advantage of the shade!  I did bring water and a bowl for them...I'm a good mom!  HA

Gigi resting!
Kalee wishing she were home!

Next we walked up and down the town looking for one of two restaurants that allowed dogs in their patio area.  The decision was made for us as one of the two restaurants were closed!  We ended up at the Big Deck Raw Bar and sat by the window/water.  And this was our view!

 It was perfect. Bob had a blackened grouper sandwich and I had a crab cake sandwich.
Both were really good.

Gigi asking for some crab cake!  She got kibble instead!

Why of course you are going to see more pictures of our girls!  It's why we went to Cedar Key!  For them!  HA...well, that's what Bob said.  I told him honestly they didn't care.  It just made him feel good that he took the girls for a day trip!  HA

They were really good while we ate!

Next up we had to stop for ice cream!!  I had chocolate with peanut butter, which was a first for me.  I don't usually care for 'things' in my ice cream but this was delicious!  Girls were given a taste of Bob's, which was vanilla.  They can't have chocolate!  Besides I didn't want to share!  HA

We had such a nice afternoon!   Girls even got in a golf cart ride when we got home!  How lucky are we!  Now off to pack and clean...did I say I was lucky!  HA

Saturday, April 22, 2017

Last minute work

Well, next week I'll be packing up my art supplies in the back seat/floor of the SUV!  Before I do that I wanted to get working on another project.  My bud,  Susan, and I headed to the quilt shop this past Monday so I could pick up some background and leaf fabrics.  Susan has a great eye and is the perfect mate to take with you fabric shopping!  Of course, we stopped for a nice lunch too! But I digress.....I wanted to make 2 D leaves...similar to the leaves on my Wolf quilt shown here.

Well, thank goodness for my blog...for the life of me I couldn't remember how I made those buggers!  So, I did a search on my blog and found a post I did in 2009 on making the leaves.  WooHoo!  You can see the process here.  And here is a close up of the 2D leaves.

The 'green' I purchased for my current leaf project isn't your typical lawn green or even pretty green but the color/value is what I need for this project.   I printed out some pictures of leaves and glued the page to a lightweight piece of  cardboard (actually it was an advertisement for pizza).  Then I cut out the leaf shapes for tracing!

 Here is one piece that I free motion quilted some leaves.  This is a batik which is pretty but different for leaves!  I will be adding some shading with pencils.

Next up was to cut out the buggers, which isn't easy with these hands/wrists!  Now on to the next step of quilting the brown background fabric you see behind the leaves.  I hope to get to that phase on Friday.

 Once I finish the quilting on the background I'll pack up this project.  I will keep Mr. Blue out to work on when I have free time at night.  But next week will be really busy with cleaning and packing up so art will have to wait until Michigan!

Thursday, April 20, 2017

Yep...more food...

I already posted on Wednesdays outing (Sally's surprise BD!) so to round out the week...Thursday we ate at Chefs of Napoli in Ocala with the gang!  Really good food and generous portions.  We just need to remember to arrive before 5:00 p.m. for happy hour!  Hey, seniors need to save their $$'s, right!

 The bread and dipping oil were fantastic!  The best around...hence, I just had their house salad with grilled chicken.  Don't ask how much bread I ate!  That's why I had the salad!  Delicious house dressing too!  Bob had one of their specials and only ate 1/2!  Woo hoo!  So we had leftovers on Saturday, which I love!

And they had music at your table!  What a fun place!

Next up, Marilyn and John invited Sally, Dan, Larry, Jan and Bob and I to dinner on Friday!
Marilyn, Jan, Me and Sally!

 Marilyn always sets a table so pretty!!

Jan brought these for Marilyn...Jan is so good at arranging flowers!!! Aren't they lovely!

I made my stuffed jalapeno appetizers and Jan made garlic olives and a cheese spread (that was really good!!)

Of course the guys talked golf and were on their phone looking up stuff!  Yes, Bob that is you!

I made two lemon pies...actually, I owed John some pies.  Long story that I won't share here!  Has to do with FB and spellcheck!  HA

All in all we had a great night!  Or I should say another great night of friends and food!

And last night, Wednesday, Bob and I had 'date night' at our favorite Mexican restaurant!  Yep, the 99 cent margaritas were calling...we had several errands to run and just happened to end up at El Toreo's!
The beat part was we ate out on the patio! That was a first for us in over 13 years of coming to Florida!  The weather was in the 80's but a nice breeze (not the wind we've had lately) so it was very pleasant and food was really good.  OK, the margaritas were the best! So until next year......God willing!

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Happy BD Sally!!!

Happy Birthday to Sally!

On Wednesday, last week,  8 of us along surprised Sally at her daughter and SIL's restaurant for a birthday celebration!
The kids have a new restaurant, KATs Grill in Tavares.  Actually, it was an established small restaurant that Kristin and Dan totally remodeled.

 What a fun time we had and Sally was really surprised as you can see by her expression.

Sally, her daughter, Kristin and Daddy Dan!

And the Cole Ladies!
Alexis (Sally's grand daughter), Sally and Kristin

Of course there was cake and presents and blowing out the candles!!  What a fun afternoon!!!

And did I mention how great the food was!  Kristin and Tom (sorry, I didn't get a picture of Tom!) have done a wonderful job in remodeling the restaurant and coming up with unique the PB&J burger!  It's peanut butter, bacon and jalapeno's!!  And I ate the entire burger!!!!  Delicious!!!  If you are in Tavares, Fl., make sure you stop by!!  Right on the water...just a little place but big in food, service and fun!

Sunday, April 16, 2017

Alcohol Inks - Play Day 2

No, it's not one of my dogs.  I captured this from the Mod.Dog grooming salon in Florida!

Yes, I am a tad behind in my posts!  We are only here in Florida for another 2 weeks and these last two weeks are always SO busy for us!  Between getting with friends to meet one more time, or to go to our favorite eatery or just packing up can really keep us busy!

I finally uploaded my pics for the pieces I did last Monday at our Alcohol play day (Play Day 1 is here ).  These are the pieces I sprayed, dunked or brushed with alcohol inks!  With the exception of this piece, which I've left as it is/was!  It was a thermofax screen printed piece on while that didn't have a lot of definition from the printing.  I did some rubbings on it from one of my hand cut stamps but it will remain as is until I decide what to do with it! I don't think the inks would have enhanced it much.  I do want to thank Beth for showing us some tips and tricks to using the inks!

This was the quilted piece that I wanted to spray.   I couldn't really decide what to do with it or how to spray it but luckily I am surrounded by great friends and artists!  Kay (Quilts + Color) suggested I just fold the piece and spray!

And that's exactly what I did!

You can see the folds, then the piece was clipped which helped it stand up so I could spray!

And here is the first spray using red Dynaflow paint (mixed with water and alcohol).  Next I folded the opposite way and sprayed with Rit dye (mixed with water/alcohol)

And the end results...well, so far that is!  I'm not finished with it yet.  Just another piece that I have to meditate on for awhile!
And this is my 'drop cloth' I used to mop up the remaining inks!  Again, suggested by Kay!

 You'll need to look at the play day 1 post to see this piece before I play with the inks.   I used different crayons to do rubbings on the white fabric.  I couldn't decide what to do (I know...I was very indecisive using the alcohol inks!) so I just took the piece of fabric and placed in a bowl of yellow Dynaflow paint (again mixed with alcohol and water) and let it soak for about 20 minutes.

 Here are the 3 rubbings alone.  This rubbing I had used Inktense blocks,which you can see washed out.  But that's because they are watercolor blocks! You can still see some of the rubbing.

This section I used oil pastel crayons

And this section I used Neocolor 1 crayons.

I made a freezer paper stencil and sprayed blue Dynaflow paint (yep, mixed with alcohol and water).

I removed the freezer paper...spray did cover quite well.

This was another thermofax screen printed piece that was blah.  I sprayed the upper left corner with alcohol, then laid down a 'gear' stencil, then sprayed with Rit liquid dye (mixed with water and alcohol).  I was disappointed that the colors ran.
So, for the rest of the piece, I just sprayed the dry fabric with the Rit/alcohol mixture.  I like this much better.  I did get another suggestion from Beth to lay the stencil on top of the area that ran and use oil pastel crayons to define the edges!  How cool!  I will do that when we're back home.

This was just another small piece I used the Neocolor 1 crayons and did rubbings.  Should be a good piece for fiber cards.

All in all it was a fun day and my  last get-together with the ladies this winter.  Would I use the inks in the future???  Not sure...I do like my thickened dyes, color pencils, etc.  Not sure I see a lot of benefit on fabric although, Beth has done some beautiful pieces using alcohol inks.  On paper you get some great results but I don't make cards anymore so - but maybe I should!  HA