- Grand Tetons Adventure -

A quick trip to Jackson Hole and Grand Tetons National Park with Gordon and Karen. My first canoe experience and another hike for Scott.

I'm so mad. I spent an hour labeling and explaining every picture in this post and somehow lost the words. 
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:: clinging ::

I've LOVED our hot weather lately. When I looked at the weather report tonight, I giggled because it showed temps in the upper eighties continuing for the next week or so.

I was out and about the other day and took a few end-of-summer photos. The shot above is of a small canal in the center of town...one of the few we'll have left when the local canal-obliteration project is completed in a few months. The canals are such a part of the personal history of anyone who has grown up in Logan and Cache Valley. I feel sick to see them channeled into pipes and covered over with ugly dirt. After I took this picture, I stood still and enjoyed the sounds of birds and insects under the tree canopy above the water and remembered the carefree summer days of my youth.

First Dam at the mouth of Logan Canyon was busy with picnics and kids feeding ducks. One of my summer favorites is the smell of willows along the river banks in the canyon. And, the willows are such a pretty green color right now. 

I got a big kick out of these paddle boarders on the dam. I had to watch for a few minutes in disbelief at the dog on board. 

And, of course, at the mouth of the canyon, a true sign of summer - "very high" fire danger. I wondered if Smokey Bear is still a symbol of fire safety, and sure enough he is and even has his own webpage. Note, it's Smokey Bear, not Smokey the Bear, which is what I've always said. 

For me, summer is pink flowers. I love flowers in every color of pink from the pale pink roses next to my driveway to the deep pink peonies that bloom in my back yard in early June. Right now, I have a few pink blooms in my front yard, and I'm clinging to their summery-ness (a made-up word)* for the next couple of weeks. Pink geraniums are at the top of my "best yard flowers" list.

I even love pink petunias...they can be delightful when properly nurtured and cared for. The gardeners on the USU campus are masters at making petunias thrive and bloom with abundance. (Need to go talk to those guys sometime.)

Right now I have blinders on to marigolds, black-eyed susans, sunflowers, and those awful yellow and rust chrysanthemums that are popping up in the garden centers of the home improvement stores. I'll look at them in about two weeks, after Labor Day, when I have to give in and face fall. I'll probably even buy some mums for my porch...later.

*Here's a quick travel memory: when we were in Italy, I was determined to bring home a handbag - one with a perforated leather design (like the one above). This design or "look" was everywhere in Europe. But they were EXPENSIVE...even from the street vendors. On the next-to-last day, I went inside an accessory shop and there I found the purse I'd been shopping for. It was white leather on one side with the little dot perforations and a lovely cream linen on the other side. I said to the Italian sales clerk who spoke very good English, "I love it! It's so summery." She tilted her head and looked at me with a puzzled look and said, "Summery? I've never heard that word. But it's good."

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~ birthday surprise quilt ~

It was a Sunday afternoon, and our family was all together - every one of us! This only happens twice a year, so it was a special weekend. We had given some birthday gifts to Scott whose birthday had been the week before. I wasn't even thinking of my birthday because it happened while we were in Italy, and our "gondola" celebration was wonderful and enough.

Someone handed me a box and said it was a surprise gift. I opened it and about fainted as I saw a beautiful handmade quilt top. I was shocked and moved to tears.

Suzie and Becky had planned this gift for my (I can't write the number) birthday. They spent a lot of time and thought making it. They'd had everyone in the family create a personalized block by writing and drawing on white squares with fabric pens. They are so cute and thoughtfully made just for me. 

Becky cleverly sewed the blocks together alternating them with fabric blocks, then bordered the blocks with strips of coordinating fabric.

This just happens to be a line of fabric that I LOVE and have loved since it came out. It's called Happy Go Lucky by Bonnie & Camille for Moda. The colors and designs are darling, and, of course, the navy blue is what makes me love it!

Look at these blocks! We all know how hard it is to get people to make something like this. Thanks to Aimee for getting all four of her kids and herself to make their blocks. Notice the appliqued hands that are tracings of little Elizabeth and little Claire. So cute.

Thanks Suzie and Becky for your hard work gathering these creations. Thanks kids, kids-in-law, and grandkids for coloring such cute pictures and saying such nice things.
Now, as if it weren't enough to make the darling quilt with hand-drawn blocks, Becky and Suz went the extra mile and made a wonderful quilt for the quilt "back" too! I think Suzie cut and Becky sewed. (?)

Look at that piecing. That's a LOT of work and time. I love it so much. I appreciate it more than I can express. I can't believe it's my quilt. We'll ask our dear neighbor Carol to quilt it, and it will truly become an heirloom. 
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