I finished quilting the fourth community quilt on Tuesday morning, and then tidied up before my brother and his sweet wife arrived. My brother has lived in China for a while, and we enjoy his short visits when he comes to Canada.
I had dinner ready - one of his favourites - meatloaf, made with one of our Mom's recipes. Then our friends' church was celebrating their annual strawberry social, so we headed out for strawberries, ice cream and plates full of home baked goodies, along with coffee or tea! A great addition to our day. My sister-in-law had never been inside a church, so after we ate, our friend took us upstairs to see the interior of the church. She asked lots of questions, and took some pictures. She was very impressed by the simplicity of the building, with its modern stained glass windows. Another new experience in Canada.
This visit, my sister-in-law wanted to learn how to bake bread! Wednesday morning, as soon as the breakfast dishes were tidied up, I set out all the ingredients and began the bread making process. I had given her a printed recipe, with the steps listed, but she also took some additional notes, and took some photos of the various steps along the way. She even took a short video of me kneading the dough. She got her hands in the dough, too, and finished the last several minutes of kneading. While the dough was rising, DH took them out to a local museum, and when they returned, it was time to punch down the dough. After the next rise, she punched the dough again, and then we turned it out and I shaped the first loaf, and she shaped the second. By that time, it was time for lunch - some homemade Pasta Fagioli Soup that I had made over the weekend. Dessert was another of my brother's favourites - butter tarts, again made with my mother's recipe.
She took a pic of the bread before it headed into the oven, then another when it was baked. We waited for it to cool a bit, then enjoyed slices of fresh warm bread with butter - yum!
I headed to my computer, and made copies of all my Dad's slides - I had spent 2 summers, scanning the slides into my computer, doing some almost every day. Since I keep my computer in my sewing room, my sister-in-law came for a visit. Last year when she visited, we made some simple coasters for her to take home. She asked if she could make 2 more sets, to give to special friends in China. She spent quite a while, choosing just the right fabrics from my stash, then I put her to work pressing the fabric before we began cutting. I cut the squares, along with squares of batting, and she pressed some of them in half. I place a background layer of fabric on both sides of each square of batting, and she place the folded pieces on top, and pinned them in place. I stitched around the edges, then showed her how to clip the bulk in the corners, and turn them to the right side. Then I showed her how to use my sewing machine, and she stitched the final two herself! Many things are new experiences to her - many things that we take for granted. She is always so interested in everything, and asks lots of questions. I love her visits, as she makes me appreciate all the normal things of our life in north America, and I look at everything through her eyes!
They packed up and headed out to visit friends who live near Ottawa, and the house seems very quiet. DH is heading out to entertain at a nursing home this afternoon, so I'll have a chance to start the quilting on my friend's quilt. Eventually, I'll get back to my own work, but that's the joy of being retired - lots of time to do things I love to do every day!