Monday, October 20, 2014

Around the World Blog Hop

Lizzy at Gone to the Beach asked me to participate in an Around the World Blog Hop.  If you've not visited her before, and you love the beach and antique fabrics, then you are in for a treat.  It was her handmade lavender hearts that drew me to her blog many years ago.  And I am always in awe of anyone who can quilt as sewing is definitely not one of my fortes.

My assignment is to answer a few questions and then tag a couple of people to play along, so here goes.

What am I working on?

All I can really manage these days is small projects ...dishcloths, doilies, jar toppers, candle covers, bowls, flowers, gift bags.  And I do love making granny squares just for the heck of it.  If a project can be finished in 30 minutes, then I'm all for it.

How does my work differ from others?

I crochet and cross-stitch mostly just because.  I don't ever have a purpose or a plan.  I just like to be creative, even if only in short spurts.  Although I may not have a plan, I do have a mission ... to use what I have rather than running out and buying more supplies, which is always very tempting.

Why do I write/create what I do?

Over the years, I've made many cherished connections through blogging.  In person, I've met Maureen from The Moksi Homes, Val from Yarni Gras and Jan (who is no longer blogging).
I blog because of these friendships.  When I look through my sidebar and see all the blogs listed there, they aren't just websites, there are names and faces attached to each and every one. When I find the time to visit, it is like catching up with old friends.

Unfortunately, my blogging is rather sporadic lately.  I keep trying to find a balance but haven't gotten there just yet.

I know that everyone is very busy, so I appreciate that Kathy and Briony agreed to participate in the blog hop.

Kathy is retired and blogs from Missouri where she dyes fibers and fabrics with natural materials and makes luscious soaps.  She describes herself as a Mother-Earther and I would agree.  She is always up to something different each and every day.

Briony blogs from South East England; she is a crafter and a cat lover and is currently on an amigurumi kick.  Her husband Mr. T even crochets and sews, too.

Their posts will go up next Monday, October 27th but I hope you will go ahead and visit them now.

Today is my 20th wedding anniversary and we just happen to be in the middle of a very nasty dust storm that went from orange to blah.  Yuck!
Hope your day is a good one.
Best wishes,

Saturday, October 11, 2014

Sightseeing Saturday: Walking Durango

As most of you know, walking is my favorite form of exercise.  So I was quite happy when I came across this great little book while in Durango, Colorado over the summer.
While the boys stayed in the hotel room watching the World Cup, I headed out to discover Durango's historical downtown on foot.
Durango, Colorado was incorporated as a town in 1881.
Walking Durango takes you on a sort of scavenger hunt through two National Historic Districts.  By finding pictured items, which are your clues, you are then given facts and stories about the sights around it.

This imprint in the sidewalk was a clue.
The Palace Hotel no longer exists but the imprinted sidewalk still bears the name of the historic business.  Some of the second story rooms were refurbished and are used by the General Palmer Hotel.
Originally built as the Savoy Hotel in 1898, this structure was then a drug store, grocery store, and a saloon.  The General Palmer Hotel has occupied the site since 1964.  It was named after General William Jackson Palmer who was the founder of the Denver & Rio Grande Railway Company which reached Durango in 1881.

The railroad played a major role in the design of early Durango which was laid out much as it is seen today.
Other historic sites along the way...

The Adolph Coors Company, a branch of the original Coors Brewery in Golden, Colorado, was in business until the State of Colorado outlawed the manufacture and distribution of alcoholic beverages in 1916.  It then became a soft drink company and its name was changed to Durango Bottling Works.
 Originally built as a men's clothing store, by 1900, this property had become the Palace Grocery and Meat Market.  The business changed hands twice but remained a grocery store into the late 1940's.
 The Amy Mansion was built in 1888 by Ernest Amy to lure his wife to come west to Durango.  It remained a private home until 1932 when it was purchased and turned into a mortuary.

 It was built to resemble popular seaside resort mansions in the northeast and cost $50,000 to build which was at least 20 times what the average Durango home cost in the 1880's.
 Although substantially altered from its original build, the Bayles/Wigglesworth House is still one of the oldest buildings in Durango,  It dates from 1882 and survived the fire of 1889.
 Before automobiles, upping stones were used to help horse riders or carriage passengers mount or dismount.  The one below is engraved with the family name.
Durango is a lovely little town filled with history.

I hope you enjoyed walking with me.
Best wishes and blessings,

Friday, October 10, 2014

Friday Food

Just the other day, when someone heard that I don't eat meat or dairy, they asked the same question that I often still get ... "what do you eat?"  After 5 years of being vegetarian, and a year and a half mostly vegan, I think it's rather ironic since we are blessed with so many food choices in this world.  

For some, falafel and homous for breakfast may seem strange but it is typical for this region.  My husband had to go to work early this morning and picked this up on his way back.  Pita bread, pickled veges and olives come with the meal which happens to also be very inexpensive.
 For lunch, I had leftover chickpea salad that I made last night for guests:  3 large tomatoes chopped, one small onion and green pepper chopped, one medium cucumber chopped, 1 can of drained chickpeas, a handful of fresh cilantro chopped, 1/4  cup of olive oil, 3 TBS of red wine vinegar, 1 tsp of salt, 1/8 tsp sugar and 1 clove of minced garlic.  Blue corn tortilla chips and mashed avocado with salt, cumin powder and lemon juice were served on the side.
 A late afternoon snack was banana cake with chocolate streusel (recipe can be found here) and Earl Grey green tea with coconut milk.
  For dinner, I had granola with coconut milk and fresh fruit.
And that's it ... I may have a banana before bed but otherwise I am full and satisfied.  Since changing my eating habits and views on food, I actually crave simple, healthy, delicious meals. There are days when I nibble more than usual, but I always opt for healthy choices.  Most people think that protein and calcium are only found in meat or dairy, but everything we eat has some level of these necessary nutrients.

Wishing you a healthy, happy day.

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

The Busy Month of October

Only the first week of October and it has already been a very busy month.
My oldest son turned 19 on the 3rd and Eid Al Adha was celebrated from the 4th to the 6th.  We've done lots of visiting with friends and running around over the past several days.  Although my husband went back to work today, schools are still closed for the rest of the week which makes me very, very happy.

 Whenever I have down time, I am still crocheting and doodling.  And Jingles is my constant companion doing what she does best.  Did you know that October 4th was World Animal Day?
Yesterday we spent the entire day with Kuwaiti friends at Khiran Resort which was built in the 80's.  I walked a total of about 2 hours and then we biked for an hour so it was a very active day.  A bit humid, but bearable.
The weather is slowly changing, still very hot in the afternoon, but nice in the morning and evenings.  We made a trip to the plant souk where there was lots of color.  Always so happy for the planting season to begin here.
Still much to look forward to in October -- our 20th wedding anniversary is on the 20th, my youngest boy will turn 16 at the end of the month and we will have another day off for Islamic New year.  Lots of friends are having birthdays this month, too.  And it's Breast Cancer Awareness Month so I think some pink crochet is called for.  And let's not forget Halloween.  A busy, busy month indeed.
Hope you are having a lovely month so far.
Best wishes and blessings, 
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