Saturday, March 12, 2011

We Interrupt This....

Regular Blog Post for....

I had every intention to to post a new project this weekend. I may still do that, but with all that has gone on in Japan the past 24 hours, I feel like I need to interrupt the crafty blog post for some thoughts and memories.

I had the prevailage of living in Japan for several years during my college years. My first summer in Japan was with ELI / LIFE Ministries Scrum Dendo program. I was an English teacher / missionary in Sendai, Japan (the epicenter of the March 11, 2011 quake). Each of us were paired with a small church, where we taught English to children and adults in the neighborhood as part of an outreach program sponsored by the churches. We lived with a family gaining wonderful experiences, friends, and memories along the way.

Here I am meeting my host family at the train station.

Toru and Shoko, with their children, Hajime, me, Scott Nelson, Matt Boone, Tomoko and Yoko.

My home was with the Kimura's. He was the Pastor of Mukaiyama Christ Church in Sendai, Japan. Today, as I watched all of the news reports, and saw the devistation in and around Sendai, I could not help but think of everyone I had come to know that summer. Here are some general pictures of the Mukaiyama Christ Church.

And some of my students - Ruriko Kokubo, Kana Kokubo, Shogo Naganuma, Hiroko Yarimizu.... 

Here we are touring the Mastushima Islands. This is just west of the epicenter of March 11ths earthquake and tsunami.

I cherished my time in Sendai, with all of these wonderful people. I pray that they and their families have survived the quake and tsunami. I will continue to keep these people and my fond memories in my heart as everone begins to rebuild.

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Weekend Activities

It seems I have had a different craft focus each weekend for the past few weekends. Starting with card making (Valentine's Day), Scrapbooking (the Scrapbook Expo Crop...), and this weekend it was quilting/sewing.

Every year I head to Temecula, CA with a group of quilting friends for a fantastic weekend. We stay at a quait little retreat center, nestled in the middle of the wineries. We always have a great time working on projects, eating lots of great food. A few of us even get up early enough to see the Hot Air Balloons take off on Sunday morning. Here are a few shots from this morning's launch.  

As for projects, I got a quilt layered and the quilting begun. Here is only a hint as it is a gift. I don't want give too many hints as to it's finished design just yet.

I started a quilted bag with some wonderful fabric I just picked up from Moda Fabrics. A great antique look.
the patched piece will be the outside, while the red lettered fabric is the lining.

Then I tried out a new pattern for a small sachel to put in my purse. It carries tea bags, sweetners... Here is my first try. I love how small it folds up. I have a few ideas for revamping the create a "hot chocolate" pack, for my non-tea/coffee drinking friends.

I can't wait to finish all these so I can show you the finished projects.