Monday, July 28, 2014
Friday, July 25, 2014
Thursday, July 24, 2014
Monday, June 23, 2014
P.S. Which of these do you like better?
Friday, June 20, 2014
Monday, June 9, 2014
Thursday, June 5, 2014
Tuesday, June 3, 2014
This is my latest - and last literary effort for the memory quilt. Comments accepted, but I'm not changing anything unless I spelled something wrong. ;-)
From 1949 to 1953, in the little valley of Penrose in northwestern Wyoming, my summers were spent helping Dad and my older brother, Dwight, doing various jobs on the farm. Hay was mowed, and then raked into windrows to dry in the sun. One of my chores was to drive the John Deere tractor with the haywagon and hayloader down the dried windrowed hay. My brother, Dwight stood on the wagon with his pitchfork and arranged the hay on the wagon evenly. (Occasionally, there was a water snake, which he might pitch my way.) When the wagon was full, we headed for the hay yards at Grandfather’s house; here was the large derrick, crafted from poles with the Jackson Fork on the end of a pulley system that would lift the hay from the wagon to the stack. It was the finest derrick I have ever seen made for a Jackson Fork (I have seen various versions of derricks in Wyoming, Idaho, and Utah, but I’ve never seen another as carefully made as this one. Logs were probably brought down from Pryor Mountain to the north, and I suppose that Grandfather and his two oldest sons made the derrick in the early 1900s.)
Now, my job was easy, as I watched while Dad climbed onto the full haywagon, Dwight picked up the reins of the team of horses, Pet and Babe, who were hitched to the pulley system for the Jackson Fork; Grandpa, in his 80th year in 1949, would insist on being on top of the hay stack. On command, Dwight would lead the team forward far enough to lift the heavy four-tined Jackson Fork from the ground onto the wagon load of hay. Dad would push the tines into the hay, and fasten it closed, then give the signal to Dwight to lead the horses forward to lift the hay to the top of the haystack, where Grandfather would direct it with his pitchfork so that Dad could pull the trip rope and drop the hay in place. (Sometimes, we all held our collective breaths as Grandfather eluded the dropping hay.) Then, the team would go forward again, bringing the Jackson Fork up and back to the wagon. It was a coordinated, cooperative effort between the men, horses, and the pulley system with the big fork. When the wagon was entirely unloaded, and the last hay swept off, the team was ready to be released from their job, and it was my job to lead them to the irrigation ditch for a drink of water. They were much bigger than I was, and I was glad when they finished.
Sunday, June 1, 2014
Friday, May 30, 2014
Designing and constructing this quilt top has been a lot of fun, and brought back many memories. If Dwight hadn't been the amazing photographer he was as a "kid", with his Baby Brownie camera, we wouldn't have these incredible nostalgic pictures that are on this quilt. I'm trying to decide what the subject of the next memory quilt will be. By the way, no one has given me a name for this quilt?????
(This is the story that I concocted - in the picture above, you can see that I have a shadow of the actual fork.)
Alfalfa Hay was first mown, and later raked into windrows so that it could cure in the sun. I drove the John Deere, following the windrow of hay, and the hay was picked up by a hay loader that trailed behind the wagon, that had teeth that carried the hay up onto the wagon where my brother, Dwight, arranged and packed it. When the wagon was full, we would head for the stack yards, where the giant derrick for the Jackson Fork was used to build large haystacks for winter use.
My grandfather’s derrick for the Jackson Fork was well built of poles, and the pulley system carefully constructed. Our team of horses, named Pet and Babe, was hitched to the pulley system. Grandfather would be on top of the haystack, Dad would be on the wagonload of hay, and Dwight would be ready to lead the team. The horses would go far enough ahead to raise the large fork from the ground onto the hay wagon. Dad would push the fork tines down into the load, and secure it. He would give the signal to my brother, who would lead the horses ahead, so that the fork full of hay would rise from the wagon, and swing over to the haystack. Grandpa would grab the trip rope and pull, and the hay would be deposited on top of the stack. We often held our breaths, as the large clump of hay would threaten to cover him, but there were no mishaps.
Thursday, May 29, 2014
I tried the idea of fuzzing the edges of the pictures, but that didn't work - will probably stitch around them with a narrow decorative stitch to break up the straight sides a little bit. Like the sepia (or antique) tones much, much better than the black and white.
Thursday, May 22, 2014
I took the lower picture by natural light from the window, and the colors are more true.