Thanksgiving

Another year, and this time, Thanksgiving was back to what it should be, the whole family as well as a guest who had no where else to go.

Thank you Kimi for taking the family pictures, each one has someone with their eyes closed or blurry, or looking away, which I think is the true spirit of family.

Aytan did not want to be in the picture! Meanwhile, Cam is holding an old lego project. You know how things disappear and suddenly appear again? I found an old box of lego that my kids used. Cam is the master lego maker, he found this, put it together, and the battery, which is at least 15 years old was still inside and it worked! Lights flashed noises were made.

No pictures of the food, lets just say it was delicious and many people went home with care packages.

I bought flowers from the LA flower Truck, they go downtown and buy the flowers at the flower mart. They are no cheaper from the truck, well maybe they are, you do get a lot of flowers. I added lemon and some bottle brush from the garden.

two lovely large arrangements.

Look how gorgeous the peonies are when open.

I needed the buffet for food, so the decorations are now surrounding the ancestors over the fire place.

I have probably already shared this image, but look closely at all the textures and reflections!

after the meal, when only these two guys remain, under the quilt watching Paw Patrol.

Of course, tradition when the boys sleep over is pancakes. Of course, pumpkin with chocolate chips.

On to another great year.

Leah

Fall quilt update

I decided to put the name of the quilt right on the front.

I know, this is just a riot of color, its’ not easy to see the patterns, but there is a lot of symmetry here.

There we go, full title.

I need more borders, another Sew Kind of Wonderful element as well as a bear paw block. Bears live in the fall woods right?

The quilt needed to be a little longer as well as wider, so time for owls.

getting an image of the quilt top isn’t easy. I have a small clothes rack. This is the best I could get.

So lets’ look at close ups instead.

The quilting should be simple since there is so much going on here, knowing me, I won’t be able to do complete simple.

How about that owl!

I learn new fangled ways of doing things, then I go back to the tried and true. No more spray glue for me. Good old fashioned safety pins, well the bent kind made for quilting. I have gone back to paper charts for my knitting, although I have to admit, I really enjoy the cross-stitch charts on the tablet. Sure, I can do it from a paper chart, but being able to really zoom in, helps. Plus, I enjoy seeing my progress both on cloth and on the tablet.

Basted!

The perfect backing. I had bought a bolt on sale for $20. This one is called game day and it celebrates all kinds of sports, yes, football being one of them. So what is more appropriate for fall then football? No, I never watch it but Joel does and this will be his quilt.

Even before it’s quilted, the batting and backing add so much support.

I’d love to get it quilted before Thanksgiving, like I don’t have enough to do with my cooking…

Leah

Mid week walk

Our Temple in conjunction with another Temple started a group for seniors. I’m not quite there yet, but figured, I can avail myself of some activities.

So I joined a hike, well really a walk.

Out in Chatsworth, looking for the old Stagecoach route from Simi Valley to Chatsworth.

It was a gorgeous fall day, the weather was perfect. The company was fine, I’m very much in a completely different lane than these people. Always have been, such is life. I’ll probably go on a few more hikes, but the older you get, the harder it is to make friends, and at some point I realize, it’s not worth it to me for people who are different from me in everything but the fact that we happen to be Jewish.

The scenery is beautiful, the air was clear. It was good to be outside.

Water tanks along the way.

We found the wagon road, now I understand it hasn’t been in use for over 120 years, railroads, cars replaced it, so the condition it’s in doesn’t indicate what it was like when in use.

Either way it was very steep. Only walked up a few feet.

There is a lovely park on the Chatsworth side, they are keeping this abode structure around. there is also a homestead building, where a family lived way back all those years ago. Open the first Sunday of the month. As well as a really nice recreation center. Life moves on, finding signs of the past gets harder.

That is the homestead in the background, nowadays, just a house. but look at the relic in front of it! Talk about old, I’m a little surprised it’s allowed on CA roads, it can’t be up to code.

Sure, the hippies were right – and now their descendants are doing everything possible to destroy civilization as we know it. I never thought they were right, they simply lived off their parents hard work and pretended to be righteous – at least one of them left this relic behind.

Leah

Fall decor

I should have put this up earlier in October, I didn’t. Knowing me it will stay up for a few weeks after Thanksgiving.

I think what it is, is that I don’t want summer to be over. We just switched off DST, I happen to like the longer daylight hours. I’m not bothered by the change – sure, it takes a day or two to get used to, so what? The people who complain the loudest are the ones who travel the world and never complain about jet lag. Its’ one hour – get over it!

Love this one. Although this will probably be replaced by my Channuka one right after Thanksgiving – it starts that Sunday night, one of those very early years.

Adding roses from the garden, as well as the bottlebrush and even a few leftover kumquats from last year – to a supermarket bunch of flowers. I do love my indoor flower arrangements.

Best holiday decoration!!! I finished it!

I probably already showed this one. I used a piece of the original 32 count Lugana that I bought for my Modern folk Embroidery SAL. I’m glad I was forced to switch, I went with 36. I am getting so spoiled, these days, it’s only linen I like, I find it so much more pliable and workable.

I worked on this one every day, and when I say I worked, I put in a lot of stitches. I also played around with the colors, added more than was called for. It’s all from my growing stash.

Jeep done! Turkey, almost done.

Here I am done with all the cross stitches, there are a few back stitches to add.

Here it is, back stitches, which really do add some dimension and it’s ironed!

I bought a 10″ diameter hoop. I wrapped it with fall color fabric. Then I cut a piece of quilt batting and put that behind the work. I did a very uneven lacing of the fabric.

Glued a backing fabric over the back as well, so it would be nice and neat.

I had also bought the stand at Jo-Ann’s. I notice that some of the fabric glue leaked to the front- yikes! Luckily, if you look back at the first image – you will see it dried to invisible. Very fun project, I will probably do more fall ones in the future. I don’t do Christmas and at this point what I have seen of Hannukah designs is rather yucky – just like Hannukah wrapping paper. Blue, white and silver, stars and menorahs. I’ll keep looking, but it won’t happen this year.

Leah

American Heroes Air show

I found about about this two years ago, but it was too late to go. Last year it didn’t happen, yay for this year, we went this year, it was wonderful.

I had wanted to take all the grandsons, but that didn’t work out. It was only Aytan and his dad, which was lovely. Its’ nice to do special things with Aytan. This year it was all about helicopters.

Here is Cal Fire with one of their scooper helicopters, its’ not a big scoop, they have a pump underneath and a tank to hold the water. All the fire helicopters now are like this.

We here in SoCal have had so many years of awful fires. We’ve burned a lot out. so Northern California has been hit very hard in the last two years. These guys stayed local – just in case they were needed. Love how the emblem of CA is mirrored in the plane.

Military Black Hawk, a hospital helicopter.

Aytan enjoyed climbing up and sitting in as many of these as he could. Hard to get a smile out of him, but he was very happy.

In the cockpit

A picture with Saba. Yes, it was very hot, 90 degrees, the Santa Anas are blowing. Lets hope they don’t bring fire.

A former military Black Hawk, bought by Ventura county and painted bright yellow. Aytans favorite color!

The guys and gals manning the helicopters were delightful to talk to. It was a fun day for them, to talk to the public, and it was fun for us.

They were handing out the fire hats at most of the helicopters. Aytan is good, he sits in a chair with a seatbelt and immediately puts it on.

There was Navy…

Next to Army. They get along just fine.

KABC new helicopter was there as well.

There were booths with all kinds of first responders and law enforcement. There was a private helicopter company offering rides. We never got close enough to even ask the price. Here is Aytan on a 1962 Fire engine from the Encino Station.

A couple of beautiful old classics. As well as the Veterans Day motorcycle parade that went by up on Foothill Blvd. There had to be hundreds of them. I was too far away to get a good picture. It took a long time for them to go by. Bless them all!

Its’ on my calendar for next year, hopefully with more grandkids.

Leah

November in CA

Yes, we have amazing weather, and the landscape is gorgeous. Sure the taxes suck and our governing cabal is horrible, so although last year they shut off the beaches and parks – and thereby increased the number of ill exponentially – this year we are out and about.

Veterans Day, the kids are out of school. first thing when I arrived – play with play dough. Only allowed outside, and believe me that table is very dirty. Cam doesn’t care about dirt, he is enjoying the mushy creativeness.

there is something about being half a mile from the beach. my DIL created this wall almost 2 years ago and doesn’t water much. You’d think this sport cacti would be dying – even though its grafted on a strong base. Not only is it thriving – its’ got babies. Must be just enough moisture in the air.

West got a metal detector from his other grandma. Not sure the interest will last all that long, but down to the beach we went.

The two of them, looking for treasure – they found a pull-tab. Previously with their mom they found some coins, so were happy to share that with a couple of people who asked. This was Veterans Day, the beach was full!

Both sitting out and enjoying the sun. Yes, the sky really is that blue.

The brave ones are in the water, although the air was in the high 70s the water is very cold.

Seagulls are nasty. This one stole the bag of chips. The woman must not be local – because she was surprised at the audacity. I wasn’t, but couldn’t get the bag bag, just took pictures of the spoils.

Bag is open, I’m surprised this other guy is being patient.

Before long at least 6 birds were here, yup they cleaned up the chips, but we had to pick up the trash bag. Seagulls really don’t care about the environment.

The apartment building closest to the beach. Lest you think this is some rich guy – nope, these are old broken down apartments, it’s the young people who live here. Despite the media’s best efforts – people know.

An old coot lives here, in an old original beach house. I concur – my body my choice shouldn’t only be about abortion. but of course, these days, that is all it is. I also like how he is playing off the trans issue – I feel like a woman today so I am!

Life here is always interesting.

Leah

Back to giving a tour downtown!

Its’ been way too long, and boy have I missed giving tours. After my visit a few weeks ago with a friend, I signed up to give a tour again and it was glorious!!!

People signing in. One can no longer just walk up and join a tour, you have to sign up in advance, who knows, maybe that too will change. Luckily most people took their masks off outside, this couple who were on my tour did. They live locally and they thoroughly enjoyed the tour – they felt like they learned so much about their own city. I love that, it is fun sharing with tourists, there is something so special about the locals learning and appreciating where we live.

I don’t take pictures during my own tour, many times I want to. The interesting people are back downtown, but as the tour guide, I can sometimes point them out, but can’t really stop to take a picture myself. On my walk back to my car I noticed this building which is now apartments. THE JUDSON?? As in Judson glass??? I know that their first workshop was in downtown, and then they moved to Garvanza – Highland Park. I need to ask the question on their FB page.

I crossed the street to get a full picture. This is a Bueax Arts building. Juding from the top, I do think that the ground floor and mezzanine level were updated in the 70s’. It is too plain, and the windows are too big. the canopy looks very modern and it is interesting that they used an Art Deco font for the name. Another thing, Mike Needleman is the owner and is leasing right now, according to the sign. My husband grew up with him. His family invested in downtown many years ago. They own the Orpheum theater.

I did stop to take pictures in Pershing square. I never talk about the statues here, we simply don’t have time. At the end of WWI the park was named after General Pershing who led the American forces in the war. He really didn’t have any ties to Los Angeles, but it must have been very popular to name things for him at the time.

He did have ties to Omaha Nebraska, so it is interesting that this group payed for a plaque to be placed here in LA. I don’t know where they were originally placed, today, they have large orange balls on top of the pedestals. Go figure.

The oldest item in the park is this cannon from “old Ironsides” the famous battle ship from the Revolutionary war. This cannon saw battle two years before Los Angeles was established in 1781.

It was donated to the city in 1953, and I for one am grateful that it is here.

This is apparently the oldest work of public art in Los Angeles. A memorial to those from California who fought in the Spanish American War.

The plaque is from the 30s’ and isn’t very clear anymore. It saves Private Herman W. Hils Co. I don’t know if he was from LA, I’m guessing he was.

There is a list of war casualties from CA with a notation that these men fell in the Spanish American War in 1890. Btw, Pershing took part in that war, as he did in many other battles and wars.

A statue honoring the soldiers who fought in WWI. Notice the palm tree – the symbol of SoCal. I heard and interesting podcast about how in the late 19th c. a couple from the midwest started using the palm tree as our symbol. Even took them to the Chicago world Fair, after that, they were planted everywhere. Not natives of course, but then few people are native here.

There was a time when patriotism meant fighting for your country and being willing to celebrate those who did. Not destroying statues because you are hurt about something and think they by being destructive you are erasing history.

Here we have Beethoven, notice the orange ball behind him, one of the two atop the plaques for Pershing. This used to be in the north-west corner of the park, facing what was the Auditorium that was the first home of the LA Philharmonic Orchestra. That building is long gone, but he is still here.

I will be giving tours again. I love it, and I love that downtown is back and full of life.

Leah

Silent Cal

I didn’t grow up here, in Israel we learned about the very important American presidents, like Washington and Lincoln, but the rest didn’t matter. Turns out that in America, certain presidents aren’t taught here either, and I’m not talking about the ineffectual ones, I’m talking about the successful ones that go against the lefts’ narrative.

Enter Calvin Coolidge. For a president from the 20th century, especially one who led the country during the roaring 20s’ you’d think I’d have at least known his name. But no, the roaring 20s’ had criminal Harding (although these days what he did seems tame) and Hoover who caused the Great Depression and has the sole responsibility for it.

I had already read Amity Shlaes book The forgotten Man, yes Hoover started it with bad policies but Roosevelt kept it going for years – oh, he was also quite the antisemite.

She also wrote an excellent book Coolidge. I learned so much. Ronald Reagan called him his great inspiration and I could see why. So if we are in Vermont, we were going to visit his homestead. He doesn’t have an official library – he donated his presidential papers to his Alma Mater Amherst, and started a tradition. At least the State of Vermont had the good sense to make his family homestead int a state park.

He was born behind the store in this home. Unlike many of present day Vermonters, like Bernie Sanders- his family farmed here in very inhospitable conditions. That maple syrup we all love – that was the sugar of the free man – unlike sugar cane from the Caribbean – that could only exist with massive slave labor. It was people like the Coolidges, and even Calvin himself who gathered the sap and boiled it down.

At some point, his parents build a nicer home and they moved there. That became his summer home both as governor of Mass and as President. I was thrilled to look in a bedroom a beautiful tumbling blocks quilt. Turns out this quilt was made by 10 year old Calvin. I can see the use of old plaid shirts and probably wool pants

In another room, a more modern version, brighter, fun prints. Also, a Linsey-woolsey blanket, a must in harsh cold climates.

I don’t know if this was stitched by a family member, my guess is yes it was.

Similar work, this time with a religious message.

A gift from grateful Native Americans. Coolidge proclaimed the Indian nations citizens of the United States. I understand initially their desire to remain independent – but as always happens in history. When a power nation conquers a weaker one – simply incorporate them into the fabric of society. I wonder why it took until the 1920s to do so.

Not a great picture, this is an evening gown of his wife Grace. The first First Lady who was celebrated in her own life. I guess Jackie Kennedy learned from her. What I love about her is that she was a teacher for the deaf.

During their time in the White House they lost their son Calvin Jr, a teenager, to sepsis – we don’t realize how indebted we are to antibiotics! Yes, this probably caused depression in the president – how could it not.

Meanwhile, two great things he did – as governor of MA – he completely squashed the policemen strike in Boston – saying that no public group that is responsible for the safety of citizens can strike. And these days it’s so many of our politicians that want to defund the police – until they need them to go after unvaccinated American citizens.

Another quilt – this one looks even more modern.

Knitting! both socks and mittens. I have to say, these look modern, as a way to show things they would have had back in the day – but there is no way that socks and gloves would remain so pristine.

More buildings, its’ a whole little town, church, schoolhouse, barn, store.

One big reason why the 20s’ were a roaring decade after the awfulness of WWI and the flu pandemic is because Coolidge was very lesse-faire just let people work, create, not too many regulations, not high taxes – and it worked. So behind the scenes he left things alone and the country thrived. Unfortunately, Hoover, after him made some serious mistakes, that turned what could have been a downturn into a depression. Something our Cabal in the White House is doing to us again today.

So I am grateful for Silent Cal, and praying that the disaster we are living through now will end in another such president.

Leah

Finished!

I have finished the sampler Ceesie Smitt.

This is where I was about 2 weeks ago, and now I’m done!

Here we go! done! I love this so much, I can see doing more samplers that have this kind of symmetry and open space. You’ll notice, the only none-symmetry are two flower pots below the numbers. I love that, a little breaking of the rules.

Also, these are the realistic colors, the next few pictures, I’ve lightened the images up some.

Here I am, way down in the corner, putting in my initials and the year. I had a new friend over the other day and she told me that she and some friends stayed in a rental – and she was amazed by the samplers on the wall. I had to inform her, they are wonderful, but what she saw was reproductions by people like me. No way these were originals, as 150 years old.

Some close-ups. Yes, I had to frog many stitches, but its’ worth it. I know, mistakes happen, but at some point, I want to be as accurate as possible.

So here is an interesting mistake that Ceesie made. Notice if you look at the numbers, she went from 7 to 9, but when it came to the year – no problem with the 8 in the year. So I think she simply forgot it in the row of numbers.

My friend Paige left a Thanksgiving chart last Sunday, I had to start immediately. I’d like it finished for the holiday. I will also be working on my Fruit of Plenty SAL so, we’ll see.

I’m also working on a quilt, this is my New England fall colors quilt. I initially thought I’d use green backgrounds through out. It would hav been too green, so I’m mixing it up. I am also throwing in some blue, because blue sky is part of the deal. Grey is as well, but I think I’ll skip that.

I even cleaned up a bit for a fellow quilter who visited. As you can see, I’m using mostly Sew Kind of Wonderful patterns. I’m loving this so far.

And just now, the November section of the Fruits of plenty has dropped! Off I go!

Leah

Beautiful Vermont

It is very fitting to have this mural on a wall in Burlington VT, with the church in the background.

A lot of cheese gets made here, I won’t talk about a certain Ice-Cream company, they have decided to boycott one country – Israel – because of their moral superiority . Luckily I found some other maple ice cream that was delicious.

A top the railroad station in Burlington, is this goblin permanent or is this just for Halloween?

View from the other side of the station. Btw, I don’t think this station is a train station anymore.

Then it was a visit to Shelburne Farm. This is the barn, what I’d call a mansion.

Its more than just a barn, all kind of activities go on here, like cheese making. School children come from all over to learn about farming here.

Love the textures. Yes, we bought some yummy local cheddar cheese here. It was delicious

This wonderful store is in the town of Shelburne. I’m pretty sure the famous Vermont Country store is much much larger, but this place was delightful. Offering everything one would want – or not.

We stopped at the Shelburne outdoor museum. I was extremely disappointed, the quilt exhibit, which is the reason I went there is closed for renovations. Why they couldn’t have said something on their website?? Oh right, then I wouldn’t have gone and paid my entrance fee. Its’ a large area with homes, church, businesses – sort of like Strawberry Banke – but less authentic. So here is a church. I did see a few quilts, I’ll talk about them later.

We spent the night at this lovely Bed and Breakfast. A victorian home which was nicely refurbished.

Its’ always a little bit of a risk to stay in a Bed and breakfast. The upside, a beautiful home, lovely amenities – incredible breakfast. Talk to other nice guests. The downside, when I booked, I was told we have a private bathroom – we did, but it was down the hall. Its’ nice not to be in a cookie cutter hotel room. But there always is a price to pay.

More historic Vermont homes.

Looks like the Flocked phenomenon is nationwide!

Leah