Counting Down

Today's post is going to be a mishmash of little things that are going on. I'm counting down until the butt crack of dawn on Wednesday when I'll board a flight for southern California to attend my high school band reunion. I wrote a blog post about my high school band a little while ago and explained why this particular reunion is important to me. Click on that link if you're interested. 

Our band director must be in his late 80's by now, and still living. He will be attending the reunion as well. No one of my teachers before or since was ever as dedicated as Mr. Don Lauder, and I am really looking forward to seeing him. There won't be many more opportunities to thank this man for the tremendously positive influence he had on me when I was a teenager.

This morning I received an email from one of the reunion organizers asking all of the attendees to bring a card for Mr. Lauder so that he could leave the reunion with something in his hands. I decided to make one of the Carol Doak paper-pieced cards for him. This is the result of my efforts:

I wrote a personal message inside, and I'll keep that private, but I'm so looking forward to seeing old classmates and expressing my appreciation to this kind man who was so generous with his time and energy back then.

Speaking of traveling, I couldn't resist showing you this picture of Matthew and Valerie. Valerie grew up in Ketchikan, Alaska, and she and Matthew traveled there last week (which also explains why he wasn't with us on the Fourth of July). Anyway...they posted several pictures while they were gone, but this one has to be my favorite. They are just so cute together.

So today I needed to catch up on my housework before I leave on my trip. I still need to wash a couple of loads of clothes tomorrow and run a couple of errands, but otherwise, there isn't too much left to do. Still, I needed to do some vacuuming, and that meant organizing the maps and tour books I've been collecting in preparation for our trip to the Great Lakes region this September. Now it's all put together in a nice tidy little box.

I wrote about our itinerary in my post from yesterday, and I'd no sooner posted it when I needed to make yet another change. As much as I wanted to get out to Michigan's Isle Royale that is Isle Royale National Park, it seemed to be impossible. Most everything is shut down for the season, including day trips to the island and the island lodge. I finally gave up.

Now this is disappointing on several levels, not the least of which is the least important thing in the world. Nevertheless, RVers will tell you that adding states to the side of one's RV is somehow all important, while not being important at all. In the early days of blogging, I proudly posted a picture of when we added the state of Oklahoma to the RV.

Totally silly, and yet, in the mind of an RVer, not silly at all. So to be denied our chance to see Isle Royale also denied us the opportunity to get into the state of Michigan and post yet another state on the side of the RV. 

Ahhhhhhh, but wait!

A quick perusal of the map led us to make the decision to visit the Apostle Island National Lakeshore which just happens to be in Wisconsin! Hooray! And that, my friends, will allow us to add an additional state to the side of the RV. I know you can understand how important this is...I'm sure of it because I'm going on ad nauseum about it just to make a point. No laughing. Just please smile and nod in agreement.

So take a look at the map as it stands. This trip, we'll be adding North Dakota, Minnesota, and Wisconsin.

Yes, eastern states, you are poorly represented, but we're getting there as quick as we can.

So anyway, all of that to say that I recreated the picture of our route...also not important, while being terribly important at the same time. (Accent on the terrible.)

In spite of all that, I did manage to get a little sewing done, and I'm happy to say I caught up on my blocks for:


I needed to make June's yellow block:

and July's red block:

The buttons are just lying there so you can see how the completed blocks will look. Here are all the blocks I have so far:

It's going to be a hectic day tomorrow trying to get everything done for my trip to California and also getting packed, printing a boarding pass, etc., and so I probably won't blog again until I get back. I'll be busy visiting with my friend, Lisa, and other former classmates, and so I doubt I'll have much time. If I can, I might post a picture here and there, but don't look for much else.

Still, be ready for my 4th Blogiversary giveaway, which will go live on Sunday. I think you're going to like it!

Happy sewing between now and then, and I'll tell you all about it when I get back.

22 comments from clever and witty friends:

gpc said...

Beautiful card, so nice that you get to thank your teacher, we so rarely get the chance. Your trip will be perfect (smiling and nodding).

crazy quilter said...

Your card is lovely and he will cherish it as well as your kind words. I know you will have a wonderful time at your reunion. But on another note, sorry you will be missing one state but look you do get to add another country! Canada!!! That sounds exciting to me being way down here in Texas. I may never get to Canada, so you are quite lucky...

Judy H. said...

I don't have an RV, but I still get the excitement of adding new states. I just came back from a trip where I added 8 states to my "been there" list! Enjoy your trip. I'm sure it will be wonderful.

Janarama said...

It's great that you will have the opportunity to see your former classmates and Mr. Lauder again. I'm sure he will love your card and the personal message from you.

Have a blast on your trip. Ahhh, the good old days. ;)

Lynda Halliger Otvos (Lynda M O) said...

Have a great trip. Band directors are the best. We feted ours in the Summer of 2005 in Deerfield Beach Florida for a weekend in early June. Not only did I see friends I hadn't seen in years but my sister came from Moscow and it was the last time I saw her alive. We had a glorious four days together and then it was over and we boarded our planes to go in opposite directions...

I hope you have the best time ever and that the band dude is appreciative of all you did to make this weekend special for the whole lot of you.

Kathy Felsted Usher said...

I hope you have a great trip and your teacher will no doubt love the card.

Meg said...

Nice that you can see all your band friends and most especially your band director. I remember one time I had heard to thank someone who had made am impact in your life. I always wanted to thank my Home Ec sewing teacher, Mrs. Richards. She was a great teacher who taught perfection. I could never find her and then someone came in my fabric store who I recognized from my hs and she said she had passed away.

I didn't realize that people still used the Woodalls guides. I used them many times when the girls were little and we would go camping. We found many a good campground while using them. i always liked that they would say the average site width. I never liked being really close to my neighbor. Our old pop-up still gets used regularly - at the cabin in Wisconsin for overflow. I would love to take it camping again someday when time permits.

I know you will be busy on your trip, but..... if..... you want, I would certainly love to take you to a few quilt shops since it looks like you will be coming near me!!! I live in Woodbury, which is a suburb of St. Paul. If you would be interested, let me know when you would be around here and I will make sure I don't work.

Have a great CA trip!!


Dana Gaffney said...

Have a wonderful time! Did they go to Alaska to meet her parents? I'm kind of excited about that.

Barb H said...

I'm so glad you've decided to come to the Apostles--they are a most beautiful wilderness area and I love going there and to Bayfield as well. If you have the time, you could continue East on Hwy 2 over to Hurley, WI and cross the state border into MI. Then you will be able to say you made it to MI. If you do, be sure to have a pastie!

Ann Bassett said...

Safe travels. I hope you have a great time. See you when you get back.

Karrie S said...

I live in MI near Ann Arbor. Have you thought about the Mackinac Island? There are some shops there. I can't remember if it's in the UP or almost to the UP. Crossing the bridge to the UP is like a trip within itself. It's really neat to see water all around. And I guess devastating to those afraid of bridges. You have to take a boat/ferry to the island. Once we took a trip up north to be at all the Great Lakes. Not Erie, because we have been there before. Lake Superior is super cold! There is also a place that sells Christmas stuff all year round. It's like a Dutch town called Frankenmouth. They are world famous for it. There are a few hotels there, and one is an indoor waterpark. We took our daughter there once when she was 8. She had a blast. Here's the link to that, and you can also see Mackinac Island on the same page to the right: http://www.michigan.org/property/bronner-s-christmas-wonderland/


Jacque said...

(Smiling and nodding) I can see that it is important!

Diane Wild said...

Glad you will have a fun getaway. Enjoy. Apostle Islands are awesome. Loved the ferry ride over but the RV will have to stay behind, I think. An easy day trip.

Kate said...

Beautiful card! Hope you enjoy your band reunion trip.

I so get the adding states to your RV. Not that we have an RV, but Drama Teen has decided that she wants to visit 20 states before she graduates from high school. We recently took visited north Utah. We made trips to Wyoming and Idaho so DT could add a total of 3 states to her visited list.

Tami C said...

You made a really nice card for your teacher! It looks like you have the western states covered and will catch up on the northern ones after your next trip.

Brown Family said...

That is a sweet card for your band director. I have no idea what happened to mine!

I understand about the magnets! they are fun and keep a record for all to see!

I am going to El Paso on Monday and will be back on Thursday night! Even though it is still in Texas, it is still a long trip. My youngest grand son is going to spend a week or two with his Aunt, Uncle and 5 boy cousins!

Ruth said...

That is very special that your band director will be at the reunion! Great card! DH & I had a choir director like that & he also played the violin in the Grant Park (Chicago) orchestra. I saw your post about your new Lance camper and am quite jealous. We have a 5th wheel now that we love, but loved our slide in camper a lot too and might sell the 5th wheel & get a slide in camper again. So, I totally understand your map "obsession!" I hate to brag, but we only lack 3 state from having ours totally filled in - Kansas, Oklahoma and Nebraska. We've been to them prior to camping, but not since. I retired about 5 yrs ago and we have done a lot of traveling since then. We might not do as much from now on. We are buying a house in McMinnville - should close next month! I'm very excited about it!

quiltzyx said...

Perfect apple for your teacher card - nice job Barbara! Since it's clear down here, hope your whole flight is/was smooth & that you have a great time at your reunion.

Too bad about the Isle Royale trip. I get the whole 'fill in the map' thing too, even if mine is only in my head! (Your turn to smile & nod!) I'm glad you found a worthy replacement.

Nice job on the RSC blocks. I haven't done any sewing lately - way too hot in my house right now. I just sit in front of my fan like a blob lately. Ugh. But I am going to start teaching a beginning quilting class - yikes!

Have a fabulous time at your reunion!!!

Cheryl's Teapots2Quilting said...

You will love the Apostle Islands. We stayed at Raspberry Bay several years ago. Make time for the ferry tour of the islands. Well worth it.

beaquilter said...

those blocks are GREAT! I just got back from a road trip too, a week vacation with lots of driving.

Michele said...

Love the sewing machine blocks of course and it will be so fun to follow along on your travels.

Michelle F said...

Everyone loved our band teacher as well.
He was always there for us, with a listening ear.

Happy Blogiversary!!