Friday, December 31, 2010

Not looking back!

Last day of the year. I am ending this year with another cold and body-wrecking coughs. Ugh. A fitting ending of a very emotionally hard year. I am immensely glad to finally have gotten a job after 23 months of unemployment. So instead of ending the year with a look back on the last year (no thanks!) I decided to look forward. Here is my list of to-do's:)

Great hopes to get this handquilted - at least started.

Belated Christmas gift for my sister-in-law.

Charleston for my friend in US needs to be quilted, soon.

Another belated Christmas gift that needs to be quilted soon.

This is one of my dreams now that the Dear Jane is almost done. The Civil War Bride Quilt. Isn't it amazing? I bought the pattern from Threadbear and I keep following this blog to get inspired. I struggle with finding the fabric, though. Not sure how I want it to look. That was what took me the longest with DJ, too, finding out what look I wanted. But that is half of the fun, too! Other than that, all these baby quilts - and more - needs to be quilted.

Happy New Year.

Monday, December 27, 2010

All I want for Christmas...

is warmer weather. It has been cold!!!! Icy cold! Car-wont-start-even-in-the-garage-cold!
Anyway..... can't do much about the cold. Christmas eve and gift giving is over. We celebrate Christmas eve. I have never understood that need to celebrate it Christmas morning. The story says he was born at night, with stars out and so on. Why would you celebrate the day after?

Now I can show some of the gifts I made and gave away at least. The rest will have to come later. My niece, the one who wanted a quilt with pictures, embroidery, buttons, sequins, lace and everything else, please! - had seen some of my Bareroots pictures I had made for other people, and told me she wanted something like that. With quotes. Please.
So I took one from Bareroots,
and another patterns I bought years ago,
and then made an original because I haven't found anyone else stitching it. This last one is a quote from Christopher Robin to Winnie the Pooh, and I thought about my niece the minute I read it. She struggled with school for years, suffered from depression and thought herself stupid. Until she finally got a diagnose and the right medication at an age of 21, started nursing school and received top grades since. She still think of herself as stupid. How hard it is for us to get rid of those negative thoughts we have about ourselves. I hope some of these words will help her in her daily struggle.
And then I knitted a couple of pairs of these. God jul - Merry Christmas.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Light is coming!

It might not seem it at the moment, but tonight is wintersolstice (23:38 tonight) and the days will gradually become longer and longer. Oh, how I long for it to be still light when I get home from work!
In the meantime - full moon (I can feel my teeff lengthen.....)
Christmas lights downtown Oslo
and on the castle.
If Christmas wasn't a holiday in December, we Norwegian would have found something else to celebrate with lights galore, because this month is one of the darkest of the year even for us in the eastern part of Norway. We still have daylight a few hours a day, up north they haven't seen the sun for months!
This country is for specially interested - at times....

Monday, December 20, 2010


I like that word - flimsies:)

I have finished the Charleston flimsy!
And the Zenquility flimsy.
Now for the quilting....

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Getting there

I realise I haven't shared a lot of my quilting lately. Mostly because I have been working again! Though I love to have a job again, after 23 months of unemployment, I feel it is encroaching into my creative time at home. Add to that the fact that we only have daylight from 10 am until 3 pm every day... I find it is harder for me to sit down by the sewing machine when I get home at 6 pm and it is pitch dark outside. So machine sewing is delegated to weekends and knitting and handsewing done on weekdays.

Biggest problem - get done before Christmas!!!

This weekend I worked on Charleston, a quilt I am sewing for a friend. She bought the fabric and my gift is to make it for her. It will not reach her in time for Christmas, but hopefully not too far into the new year.
Only the border missing now. And the quilting of course..... Sigh.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Red light... district?

Having a star in your window is the first step to Christmas in Norway. It is supposed to depict the star that the three wise men followed to Bethlehem. For four weeks we celebrate Advent, the waiting period, by having the star in the window and by lighting purple candles each Sunday until Christmas eve.
I got a new star this year. Beautiful dark red. What I did not take into account is that the redness of the star bleeds into the rest of the room. I feel I am living in a red light district.... not quite appropriate for a countdown to Christmas, I can't help feel....

Still.... I like it:)

Monday, November 29, 2010


I went on a pre-Christmas visit to my aunt and uncle, who lives in the middle of a forest. To get there, you have to drive through acres and acres of fields. In the summer, it is full of colour and lights. Now?
It brings to mind those pictures of snow deserts up north. I had the hardest time driving back home, as it snowed and blowed. A few places the roads were clear, like here, because it got blown away by the wind. Other places I had a hard time driving, as the roads were piled up with snow. Again, because of the wind.
I am just amazed at the difference the seasons make in a place. So vitale and lively in the summer, but so desolute now. No one to see, no one outside. All the creatures, big and small, inside in the warmth.
I wish I could add a soundbyte to the pictures. The haunting sound of the wind blowing over empty places.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Early morning musings

It is a very different way of life having to get up at 6 am every morning and not getting home until about 12 hours later. I am also outside in the early morning, before the sun comes up. The light is so different.
I walk past this every morning - the Royal Castle in Oslo. It is not the biggest in the world and not the oldest, but it suits a fairly new monarchy (this last bout of monarchy only started in 1905). And contrary to many other castles in the world, there are no fences and gates around this on.
Though we have a few guys like these standing around. Such a cold job in the winter months. If I go slightly later in the morning, I get to see the changing of the guard. I will take pictures.
And this red flag shows the king is in:)

Monday, November 8, 2010

The faded gold of fall

Another place, same fall.Walking along the trails in the Colorado lowland, the afternoon sun made simple gras look like golden feathers.
A playground is all empty, except for the distance laugh of earlier play.
And the sky... the sky is as open and inviting and as endless as it always is in this place, my home away from home.
Thanks friends, for letting me share your lives for a few weeks again:)

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

From rags to riches

So how does one go from this:
to this?
I had promised my friend in the States a handknitted Norwegian jacket, and shown her some old examples. When she fell for this one, although it was only rags left, I started by examining the pictures closely and made a rough pencil draft.
I then knitted a swatch with the yarn and the colours we had chosen. Since this yarn is thinner than the original, some differences would occur.
Then it was just to knit, really....
... on and on....
.. sleeves and all, until it was all done.
The jacket were delivered by hand earlier this week, to the enjoyment for her and the feeling of accomplishment for me.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

I can see clearly now....

This is how I have felt like for the last year, 11 months and 4 days - clinging to a steep rockside, hiding inside my own shell, hoping that things will turn around.
And then - poof! I got a job! A real, full time, permanent job! It still feels strange, but at least my worldview is more open:) I even get to spend a few weeks in US before I start to work, celebrate my birthday, my new job and Halloween! Lucky me:) Quilting, on the other hand, will have to wait a little. Good thing it keeps, right?

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Bright spot

Quite suddenly, two years of hell is coming to an end. I am still struggling with believing it has really happened, I feel slightly numb. As a tentative celebration, I went on a long fabric shopping trip on this lovely fall day. As I was getting close to home again, I passed this beautiful spectre.
A beautiful bright spot in my day:)
Even nature found it appropriate to celebrate a little today:) hehe

Sunday, September 26, 2010


I love the way one tree can show all the colours of fall. This one reminded me of the summer popsicles I used to looove: yellow on the bottom, orange in the middle and red on the top (covered in chocolate...).

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Gone fishin'

I haven't really fallen off the end of the world, though I have been there a couple of times:) Life has just been ... different.... I have had a few job interviews lately, the first ones in a year. It is amazing how much time and how much energy! those things take! But I have been slowly working on stuff.

Lately I have given Fisherman Fred his fishing poles:) Embroidered in satin stitches
Some got one fish,
and a few lucky ones got two!
This one kept the second one in the bucket.
And I have started a quilt for a dear friend of mine back in the US. It's called Charleston, and it will look good!

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Not quite done

It occurred to me that I haven't really shown anything I have been working on this summer! I have decided to start decreasing my overabundant stash! I am no good at using left overs, never have been. But now the whole thing is threatening to overflow, and I can't really add to it before I have used some of it. So I am challenging myself by making baby quilts from my stash.
So here is my pinkish japanese fabric quilt.
Sunbonnet Sue
Fisherman Fred - the fishing rods will be stitched on later.
A version of one of the DJ blocks.
There will be more, and there will be pictures of these in their doneness:) It is a challenge for me to start with an empty page, but I am starting to enjoy the process. Yet another step on the path of learning to quilt. Good thing we are never quite done with the learning process:)