Blasts from the Past!

As I was leaving the quilt shop in Nyssa, Oregon, I spotted the White Satin sugar factory. I realized it had been the second stop in a good friend’s new career as a long-haul trucker, so I stopped to send him a picture as a reminder/souvenir of his Nyssa to Los Angeles trip. :-)

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That’s when I tripped down Memory Lane! Right there in the parking lot. Do you know what this is??

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It’s an official weather station for the National Weather Service. When I was young (6th grade), I was responsible for a station just like this in the mountains of Central Idaho. It was one of my first jobs! :-)

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Every morning I had to trudge up the hill on the ranger station where we lived and record the readings. The thermometer inside could record the high and the low temperatures each day.

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There was a rain gauge attached outside the box and I would have to measure and record any moisture. If the precipitation was in the form of snow, I had to use a ruler to measure what had fallen into the larger metal gauge (looked like a pitcher) and then take it to the house and melt the snow on the stovetop to determine who much precipitation had fallen. Light, powdery snow contains less moisture than wet, heavy snow, so sometimes 6 inches of newly fallen snow would yield less moisture than just an inch of wetter snow. All that measuring leads to average daily, monthly or annual precipitation rates you hear the weather people talking about. (Click on the photo below to enlarge and read)

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Then, before 8am, I would have to make a collect call to the National Weather Service office in Lewiston, Idaho, and report my data — high, low, current temp., precipitation, and current conditions (sunny, cloudy, snowing, etc.) :-) I don’t remember how much I was paid, but I remember thinking it was pretty cool to see my data in the newspaper or hear it on the radio!

There may be a few stations like this still active around the country, but most have been replaced with computerized stations. I just have one question about those – ‘how does a computer melt the snow?!’ :-) :-)

Back on the road, returning to Boise, I found another reminder of my childhood.

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Yep! Parma, Idaho, still has a drive-in theatre and it plays new releases!

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It was always a special treat to visit a drive-in. Mom would make a grocery sack full of buttery, salty popcorn and we got cans of pop! Dressed in our pajamas, we got to play on the playground equipment below the big screen until dark when the movie started. I am sure all the movies had endings, but sometimes we fell asleep in the back of the station wagon! :-)

Yes, good times and good memories!

Until next time,
Happy Quilting!

Back Tracking into History

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I have to say, Idaho has some pretty fancy rest stops. This one is just east of the Snake River – also known as the Idaho/Oregon border (or the Oregon/Idaho border!).

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Not only can you “rest”, you can soak up some local history as well. :-)

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After arriving in Boise for the night, I backtracked the next morning to Nyssa, Oregon, to go to the quilt store that I couldn’t get to before they closed. Normally, I wouldn’t do that, but I just had to have this fabric license plate and row. (Really, what Oregon quilter could pass up this one?! Lol)

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This row is perfect for this area because Marilynn’s Pickets and Patches is practically on the Oregon Trail! While driving back to Boise, I decided to treat myself to some real Oregon Trail history.

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In the town of Parma, Idaho, you can find the Fort Boise museum. It is a replica of the original fort.

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Sadly, I was here on the wrong day to see the inside, but will definitely come back sometime.

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Outside the fort, there is a statue of a Native American woman with a baby and small child.

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The woman is Marie Dorion and her story is fascinating! She was the only female in the Astor Expedition party. I have read a book about her life and incredible struggle, so it was exciting to realize I was standing on ground she may have walked on so many years ago. ;-)

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In case you can’t read the sign, Marie and her two children were the only survivors of an Indian massacre in the middle of January in the early 1800’s. She took them on horseback and later by foot through the Blues Mountains of Oregon in the dead of winter until they were rescued in April by a Columbia River tribe.

I also discovered a surprising trail down memory lane, but will save it for my next post! ;-)

Until next time,
Happy Quilting!

Rowing Across The Desert

One advantage to traveling alone is you can stop whenever and where ever you want! So of course I planned a few Row by Row Experience stops. :-)

First stop: The Stitchin’ Post quilt shop, home of the world’s largest outdoor quilt show. The Sisters Quilt Show celebrated it’s 40th show this year and I missed it again! It’s always on the second Saturday of July and I seem to always have a conflict, but it is definitely on my bucket list.

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However, I did get to pick up the free row pattern for this. I know Hubby will like this one because of the fish! :-)

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There are three shops in Bend participating in the Row by Row, so I started at the south end with BJ’s Quilt Basket. Notice the sidewalk design at the store entrance. ;-)

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They have created a beautiful row featuring Sparks Lake in the Cascade Mountains. The kit is all laser cut and ready to fuse on the background fabric.

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They even framed a row for a wall hanging, which I may try to do. :-)

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The second shop was “new to me” and I will definitely go back some time! :-)

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Sew Many Quilts looks small on the outside, but is quite big and has many hanging samples designed to inspire!

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Silly me, I thought I had taken a picture of their row, but didn’t, so I have borrowed one from their website to show you.

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Just before leaving Bend, I popped into Quiltworks. It’s a nice shop with an ever-changing quilt gallery upstairs.

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With the Bend shops behind me, I headed east to Burns. If you haven’t visited Country Lane Quilts, you might find it hard to believe that this shop in the middle of Oregon has more than 7000 bolts of fabric! (Yes, you read that right!)

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I also can’t believe I forgot to take pictures inside this store, but I guess I got to visiting about their remodeling job and…well, here is their row (borrowed from the Oregon RxR page):

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I really wanted to try and make it all the way across Oregon to Nyssa before the day was done and the shop there closed, but I traveled with a thunderstorm and heavy rains until I reached the Idaho border AND I forgot about the time change!! Oh well, at least I made it to Boise by nightfall. :-)

Until next time,
Happy Quilting!

Chicken on a Stick

So it’s not nearly as much fun traveling alone, but since I am solo for the annual trek to Boise this summer to see family I thought I would make the most of it by including a few stops along the way…starting with brunch in McKenzie Bridge (technically Rainbow). Be warned — if you pass up Chicken-on-a-Stick, you will be sorry!

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According to the clerks, people have been known to drive MILES to the Blue Sky Market for these treats, which is juicy chicken breast seasoned just right. When I asked the clerk if I could take photos for my blog, two customers passing through the area decided to try them as well! Trust me, it’s the perfect meal to take with you as you head over Santiam Pass to Central Oregon. Although if you are driving like me, you will definitely want to remove the sticks first! :-)

Next stop, Sisters.

Until then,

Happy Quilting!

Mission Complete!

Five quilt shops visits behind us, we continued south on I-5 to Jacksonville to relax and discover more great food. :-) All that hopping in and out of shops made us a tad hungry, so when we approached Grants Pass and saw a sign for this, we couldn’t resist!

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I know what you’re thinking…”that’s great food?!?” Well, it can be when you have been deprived of this fast food for months and months! ;-) All eight Wendy’s in the Southern Willamette valley were closed after the owner stopped paying franchise fees. My quilting group is still trying to find an alternative to their tasty salads for quilt night! After a “Wendy’s fix”‘ we were back on the road.

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When we arrived at Jacksonville it was nearly 100-degrees F (why do we always go when we are having a hot spell??) so we went directly to our hotel to check in. This time we tried the Wine Country Inn, which also owns the historic McCully House we stayed at two years ago. A lovely room (suite actually) and I could have just moved in! :-) :-)

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The hotel grounds were just as nice and relaxing as the room.

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To be honest, we didn’t walk around town very much. Between the heat and the fact I had tweaked my back earlier in the week (too bad I couldn’t take the whirlpool tub home), we just visited one shop. Dare I tell you it was a quilt shop? LOL! The owner did give us a wonderful suggestion for dinner, though, so we headed over to the Back Porch Bar and Grill (formerly known as Back Porch BBQ).

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As you might expect, it has an Old West decor, but as you step in the door you are surrounded by old cowboy boots!

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Food was great. I had a crisp, refreshing salad loaded with goodies and Hubby had what he declared the best brisket he has ever had. I tried it and it really did practically melt in your mouth! (Sorry Foodies, I was too eager to eat and forgot to take pics).

The next day for breakfast we went to the Mustard Seed. We sat inside this time which was fun because of the quirky decor.

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I did remember to take pics of the food this time! (Just not very good ones.) Hubby had a dish that is basically eggs Benedict on hash browns instead of English muffins. I had a ham & cheese scramble. :-)

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Where else do you get cookies with your bill? They were delish!

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A great weekend for sure, it just ended too soon!

Until next time,
Happy Quilting :-)

One Row At a Time

In my last post I told you Hubby and I had several goals for our great weekend escape. After starting with fuel for the road, we headed south with the plan to visit five quilt shops before reaching Jacksonville. (Yes, Hubby willingly visits the shops! I tell you, he is a keeper!!) :-)

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All the shops we visited are participating in the Row by Row Experience, a nationwide shop hop that gives you a free pattern for a row unique to its store. The idea is to make a quilt using at least eight rows as a souvenir of your travels. In addition to the free patterns, the shops sell kits to make the rows and some are selling fabric license plates, too. I have actually sewn two rows that I collected in late June, but a whole quilt? We’ll see. :-)

Our first stop was The Fabric Farm in Drain, west of Interstate 5. I love this little shop and Hubby likes their row — anything involving salmon has his attention! ;-) I bought the kit because of the unique water fabric in it. He chose the red salmon.

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We took the scenic back roads to Sutherlin to visit Chicks and a Rooster, a fun shop that is celebrating it’s two year anniversary! For the most part I am not buying the kits but I have to say, the adorable sand fabric sold me on getting kit here! Lol

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The next little shop is so worth going the extra mile to get there! Sew Cute Quilting and Fabric Boutique is tucked in the shadows of a lumber mill just south of Dillard.

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A little tricky to find, but so friendly and a surprisingly good selection of fabric!  We found some fishing fabric that caught Hubby’s eye and when he suggests buying something, how can I say no!?! ;-)

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Plus, they have a really cute Row by Row display.

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And they had some really wonderful water fabrics! Did I tell you the RxR theme this year is H2O?DSC_0619

Our final stop actually included two shops, just a block apart in Myrtle Creek located a mile or so off Interstate 5. First up, The Rustic Rooster. The last time I was here, they were in the small space next door, which is now their classroom and the retail shop is on the corner.

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Most of the shops have the fabric license plates, pins, and official “row by row” fabrics, but Rustic Rooster also had small rulers! The 6.5″x2.5″ is the perfect size to keep by your sewing machine for trimming!

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Finally, we visited a new shop, Everything Sew Nice.

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It is a Bernina dealership and carries a small, but nice assortment of fabric. They also carry a large selection of the AccuQuilt Cutters and templates. Fun to watch them cut, but not sure I can justify the expense right now!

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They used the AccuQuilt to create their row kits, so some of it is ready to fuse onto your row.

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With the shop-hopping part of the weekend done, it’s time to concentrate on our other two goals: good food and relaxation, so onward to Jacksonville!

Until next time,
Happy Quilting! :-)

Fuel for the Road

Sometimes you just need to get away! It has been two years since Hubby and I had a “Chore Revolt”, so we decided to do it again and when there is a nationwide Shop Hop going on, it’s easy to manipulate   plan a course that meanders our way south to Jacksonville.

The goals for this weekend were simple:

1) Visit quilt shops participating in the Row by Row Experience
2) Eat fabulous food
3) RELAX!

Our first stop…One of our favorites.

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About 20 minutes south of Eugene, the Creswell Bakery is the brainchild of culinary expert Heidi Tunnell and her husband. It is local, local, local! And delicious. :-)

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In addition to bakery items, you can buy meat raised on the owners farm.

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They also carry some unique gourmet treats – locally made ketchups, oils, and these finishing salts harvested on the Oregon coast not too far from Lewis & Clark’s salt works.

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The bakery is located in an old church and serves a lovely breakfast. Hubby had an egg scramble that included a roasted chili paste and I had lemon curd/blueberry French toast. Unfortunately, I was so excited to eat I forgot to take photos. (And I call myself a foodie! :-( )

We did get a dozen donut holes for the road. Warning – they really are closer to the size of donuts! Here is the lone survivor:

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We actually brought five of them home to share with our son, but the dog thinks they are bites of Heaven, too!!

Next stop…quilt shops!

Until then,

Happy Quilting!