Sunday, November 17, 2013


{do you like S' arrangement?}

I had intended to leave a simple message for you before we take off, but I knew it would be great if another longer post can be share before we set this space quiet again. Time is clicking as always, but we have been taking it normal and casual just like everyday doings.  It is about time to play a new quilt idea and make it an action rather than just think about it! It has been too long since I think about making.a.quilt! I miss it! It is something hard to use words describe or express.  Once the idea is on I took the action and started the hexie piecing process and it has filling me in and keeping hands busy.

The sharing table is all "mine" for last week! Thanks to S for the kindness of sharing the table with me and even let me have it for the week! There are few last finish projects need to wrap up and hexies everywhere. There's many possible color arrangements with hexies that I made awhile ago, but need more for the quilt.  I am thinking a lap size quilt, but a queen or a king would be awesome! Maybe I need to set a bigger goal for making larger size quilt for next year or two.  The hexagon size is 3/4" and will use red print as center. It reminds me the {log cabin quilt} I made earlier and the hexie project is nice portable project to transport around.

S and I took a trip to the east coast side; where we were right next to Pacific Ocean and closed to mountains and fields.  The mountain hot spring was so relaxing and S had the best time ever! It is always spoiled when we take a field trip outside the city limited. It helps us to feel fresh again.

It is not so wintery for us here, since we used to lived in bitter cold states. The winter colors here are so gorgeous! From the greens to the browns; the earth tone colors make us think of Fall in the states.  We could still see some vibrate colors essence the field. The strawberry season is almost here, but we'll miss it!

The bike trail was the highlight of this trip! We rode over an hour bike around the mountains without many people following on the trail. I didn't need to set my voice high and loud to ask S avoid the traffic. The up and down mountain trail was exciting for her! The last time we visited the same bike trail she was 5. It has been too long since we revisit again. We had wished to stay longer, but the time was so limited.

Do you like the train photos? I had wish some sunlight when I taken the photos, but the it was cloudy and rainy that day. The train pass through the Pacific Mountain trail line and was named the most beautiful train station in the east coast. S and I have decided we'll take a train trip next time when we visit again. It will be so nice to view the land and take time slowly to enjoy longer countryside getaway.

Our belongings are most pack and put away. We left few projects to finish up and some books to keep S going for last few weeks of our time here. We still take half day filed trips around the city limited and taste local food. It has been a great way to wrap up this adventure journey of ours.

On this thankful holiday season, we Thank many of our families and friends supporting us to make this journey safe and memorable. We Thank your encouragements each time when we share our stories and journey with you. It might not be the best way to do it, {{big HUGS to you all}}!! 

I would like to let you know that I will be closed {254 sewingshop} in a few weels and though if you are interested in any supplies they are all marked down. Hope the shop will reopen again in the future. For now, I will not be able to expend the shop inventory and need to set it quiet.

{1/4" mark} will be quiet for now! We will be traveling very soon and hope see you very soon~
until then happy sewing and happy holiday~


Thursday, November 7, 2013

Penny Patchwork Passport Pouch

In the middle of decision making,  I also try to finish a few patchwork pieces that I have started last month. Not so surprise to see more hand-quilting here. Hand-quilting is one of my favorite handmade process the second of that would be hand bound off the quilts. I love taking time to make small stitches and not hurry to complete the work. It seems like a better way to work the project that I've been working on.  Lots of these hand-quilting were made while waiting S in lessons or the quiet reading time during homeschooling. Mostly, I heart the time and process that add into the work.

Do you mind I go a little more about this project? Not sure if we are alike, but I get nervous whenever we travel or making any moves. I can't tell you how many version of passport pouches I have made. Many got put away in the handmade box and many were half done. Each time when we travel I make something to travel with then I know, oh it works! oh it is not working! I love the {dumpling pouches} that I made. They are best for USB drives and little devices for computer. It is a super fun project and really save me in this move/trip.

Why I called this project penny patchwork passport pouch? With limited studio space and time to myself the small projects help me to meet the happy medium; sewing and schooling S. The portable projects have made time usage much functional and I can spend time alone even few minutes to a few hour.  Sometimes, I try to finish patchwork on the machine before schooling starts or S' in reading time... Sometimes.. things happened! Each square supposed to finish at 1", but they got finished at 7/8".  It was a mistake that I made at the beginning and didn't pick up the off set seam allowance when they all pieced and ironed.  Oh, I didn't scream.... just .......WHAT? wHat? WhAt? ........then I decided to went along with the patchwork and discovered the size of each little square is about a penny size! So I called them penny patchwork instead of mistake patchwork.. oh dear..

I've tried a few different sewing on these pouches. I used some loose count fabric/ alike linen and cotton blended fabric and made them into bias binding. It is great in contrast with the modern and vibrate color fabrics. It helps focus the patchwork and give nice finish look of the work. The binding really added completion of these pouches! The {leather closure} gives a nice contrast of hard edge and soft fabric in style. It is much easier to open and close the pouch. It also give nice secure of the passport inside and holds everything in place!

The a sort of blue version is for S! She is shifting greens to blues lately! I keep a sort of candy colors to myself. One is for my sister who we hope will come visit us in states someday and one is giving to a dear friend of mine who will turn 35 next month. We have been friends since we were 12. It is a big celebration of her birthday and our friendship~   We always laugh together when we meet up for lunches and hope she will love it!

{THANK YOU} for all your encourage words... I am still touched by many of your supports and thoughts! It does make things hard when I seem not able to make all balance at the same time. We always ready to fail and ready to grow. It takes time to reboot the energy and optimistic attitude, but it always nice to have someone along this path, together.

Meanwhile, I will be taking S for more half day trips, few more patchwork sewing and start our packing.
packing. Enjoy the last few weeks of family gathering and the southern Taiwan air, people, food, and culture.

Have a fabulous day...



Sunday, November 3, 2013

Random: between west and east

S and I have been taking a few half day field trips to the local historical sites. She loves these half day trips over the week and always happy to visit new places and ask lots questions that I have hard time to answer her back. When the Dutch discovered Formosa over 400 years ago they have left significant buildings and customs. Some of these places being shake over the years and customs have being adopted. It is always fascinating to retell the stories that I learned when I was a child then pass to S. She might not be able to understand all the history backgrounds, but these places will leave a great mark in her little life oversea.

We often departed early in the mornings, so we could return home before the sun hits the air high and big.  We treat us local food as we pass each small stand on the street! Personally, I think these food stands will not pass by the food inspections, but they are the best kind you could have!

Our scooter takes us one ally after another. Pass by the hospital where S was born and pass by the hosptial where I was born. Pass by the elementary school that I went then middle school and high school. Pass by the the tea shop where we get our loved iced cool tea and the tasty noodle shop where we get our lunch. Pass by our relative house and just say Hi! Yes, it has been fantastic half day trips that we've taken~ It is also a way to farewell this town and city that I grew up and the experiences that I wished S to discover and experience.

S and I are heading back earlier than we planned! The school didn't work out as we hoped! Over the two-weeks tryout of schooling here. It was challenging and difficult for S each day. She was not able to catch up all the studies in a different language then there were times that she refused to return to school.  She agreed to finish up the tryout days. There were some other issues that we didn't plan in then we turn the schooling into full-time homeschooling. From the bottom of my heart that I thank of the teacher that she had. It is hard for the teacher to cover every aspect in the classroom, but she was so kind to send note each day with S home.

Over last few months of homeschooling, I have learned S likes to be in a real classroom where she can share ideas and learn with other peers. She loves interact with children at her age and have some fun talk with them. Homeschooling isn't best schooling for S. Even we work together and focus on the subjects of her interests, but it gets a little much for her when she plays and studies at home.  She would like some space of her own and this mama understands that's part of the growth and the independent process that she is going through. We both learn and fail... and it is part of growth that we share together.

There are many talks between these months; should we go home earlier? or should we stay till our return day? We second the decision almost everyday then she finally asked if we could return home early. Halloween made it difficult for her since she doesn't have a custom to put on and go knock on doors for trick or treating.  She took Lucky trick or treating from room to room and that made it a bit better.

I am not sure if we have fail this oversea study experiences, but as a mama I believed S has learned and open her eyes to see the culture differently . I mostly proud that she is reading the Chinese by herself and recognized words that repeat a lot from the books or signs from the streets. Taking few other lesson in different language. She picks up the languages and able to use them when she can.  Of course, she still carries an accent in her, but that's S! Family is so happy that S is willing to use the language that everyone speaks here.  Maybe we have met the original hope? I gave her big hands for all these tries and works.

It has been a bitter and sweet decision that we made! Soon, we'll say goodbye to our family and unsure the return date for next time! We'll not be able to spend time with Lucky as we both think it is best for him to stay here with lots loves and great cares that the family is giving to him.  We spoil them as much as we can over the last few weeks! He comes and goes the room as he likes. Checking out things and get excited about park time.

This journey is forwarding three times faster and we hope to slow it down a bit when we relocated in states. Lots unfinished projects that I brought with and will bring back me. We are thinking snow will be waiting us and we'll need to dig out our winter gears in the deep storage corner, somewhere...

we'll be home for Christmas~