Monday, October 28, 2013

No-Sew Bed Skirts

Call me crazy, but in our last house, I sewed just about everything, including bed skirts like this one. Making them took hours and involved measuring, cutting and sewing huge expanses of fabric...expensive and time-consuming.

This time around my goal is to keep life as simple as I can and use my "me" time for more creative pursuits than trying to get yards of Velcro to stick to box springs. 
But, I have to admit, exposed bed frames and under-bed storage totes don't exactly create the look I'm going for. (This is the room our grandsons stay in when they visit...they made their own beds!)
Since I had four beds to find bed skirts for, I ruled out Pottery Barn for this project...beautiful bed skirts but too expensive, especially on a retirement budget.
Last weekend, I ran into Target to get last-minute supplies for my daughter's birthday party when I happened by a whole aisle of bed skirts and decided to take a quick look.
Look what I found...

Tailored twin bed skirts for $12.99 each. No Velcro required and they came I black! These are from Target's "Room Essentials" line.

A simple white Queen bed skirt for the guest room for $15.99...also from "Room Essentials".

And a turquoise Queen bed skirt with a tailored pleat for $27.99 form the Target's "Threshold" line.
The bed skirts I purchased fit perfectly...and they each came in a cute little recloseable fabric pouch that I'll reuse for travel or craft storage.

Total spent for four bed skirts...$70.00.  Total time at the sewing machine = 0.

Who knew?

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

A Quick Trip to Florida

One of the best things about being retired is being able to travel anytime we want instead of just during school vacation weeks.
What a treat to watch our grandchildren (Brian from Maine and our two grand daughters from Florida...Hannah and Taytum)  play in the surf on Clearwater Beach on an October evening...
...and to enjoy Japanese food  with Hank's daughter, Crystal, and her significant other, Ronnie...
on a "school night"!
The purpose of our trip was to take our grandson Brian, a high school Senior, to look at two possible college choices in Florida.
First we visited the University of South Florida in Tampa. A good friend of mine is a very successful alumna of USF and encouraged Brian to look at the school.

What a beautiful campus!
From the parking garage we could see the roller coaster at Busch Gardens and the Tampa skyline.
Guess who was speaking on campus the evening of our visit? of the trainers from The Biggest Loser. I guess if my Weight Watcher leader, Mary Elizabeth, couldn't be there to remind me to stay on program, it's good that photos of Dolvett were all over campus!
We also visited the University of Central Florida in Orlando. This school was huge and, in addition to high-quality academics, was housed on another beautiful campus.
Brian will have some tough decisions to make!
Between our two college visits, we managed to squeeze in a family day at Busch Gardens...
Where Brain and Hannah went on Safari...while Taytum fed the baby kangaroos.
I loved all of the animals.
This guy was smart...he found himself a fan to use on a hot Florida day...mid to high 80's and sunny every day we were there.
The day after we got home, USA Today published the results of a Readers' Poll on the "Best Place to Watch a Sunset". #1 was Clearwater Beach, Florida.
I agree!

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Summer Camp for Adults???


"A Fall Weekend with friends on the ocean…add fiber, color, food, gardens & beaches…What’s not to love?"    ~from the Fiber College website

Did you go to summer camp when you were a kid? Remember weaving lanyards with colored gimp?  Collecting acorns and feathers? Making baskets? Well, here's your chance to do it again...thirty, forty, or fifty (who's counting?) years later.
Welcome to Fiber College...where creative women of a certain age come to play!

Fiber College is the "utopian dream" of a wonderfully warm and creative woman named Astrig, and her husband, Steve, who own Searsport Shores Ocean Campground on Penobscot Bay in Searsport, Maine.



Aside from operating the most beautiful campground in New England, Astrig and Steve garden, raise bees and goats, weave, spin, knit, build, dig clams, teach, create, and cook up a storm.


And, best of all, they invite other creative souls to share their dream once a year at Fiber College.

Fiber College happens every September in Searsport, Maine the weekend after after Labor Day.


For 2014, the dates will be Thursday through Sunday September 4-7. You can attend for all four days or just one or two.
 There's an annual a beach-side fashion show of creations made by Fiber College participants...


As well as classes on everything from bookbinding to basket making... 

from paper folding, button collecting, quilting, and photography, to blogging.


Our blogging class was co-taught by professional photographer and fiber artist, Gale Zucker (check out her blog at she shoots sheep shots) and professional writer, Beverly Army Williams, whose blog is called PoMo Golightly.

There were classes in everything from weaving, dying, knitting and felting...
to fly-tying and wood-carving.

 Classes were offered in sewing, making penny rugs, embroidery and crochet...

  As well as demonstrations, exhibitors, music, shopping, sharing, wine, food and friends.
You can't help but leave inspired by the amazing women you meet at Fiber College...
Like Anita and Louise. In addition to their art, they both have great blogs of their own.
Anita's blog is called Tumbleweeds (click on link) and Louise's blog is Adventure of the Geritol Gypsy.
On their blogs, you can follow either of these amazing women on their travels around the country in their RV's and learn about their latest hobbies and creations. They also have lots more photos of Fiber College 2013 on their blogs.


And did I mention the goats?

Sound like fun?  
For more information you can go to the Fiber College blog, or...

You can get on the mailing list for Fiber College 2014 by emailing .
 or follow them on Facebook here.


 You can come to Fiber College for a day or stay over at the campground, a local motel (reduced prices after Labor Day!) ...

  or in one of the adorable Searsport Shores "bunkhouses", campers, or cottages.

 At Searsport Shores, even the outhouse is unique!
(Yes, there's a modern bathroom too!)
And with a view like this...
 What's Not to Love?

p.s. I couldn't seem to remove this photo from the page, so, Astrig and Steve, you're on here twice and this one appears to be permanently Supersized! (Where's Gale Zucker when I need her???)

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