Summer Sum-Up

Everyone talks about how much moving sucks. And it does. It really, really does. Especially when you have to do it in torrential rain. But what no one talks about is what it's like to move into a 100-year-old house for the first time. Well, that's exactly what I did this summer. And it was an adjustment, to say the least. There's a lot of getting to know each other happening in those first few months, and we seem to like to learn the hard way (ahem). But we're getting there, slowly but surely. Patience is the name of the homeowner game, I'm learning. Check back in another three months, OK?

Now before you start to think I'm a condo-spoiled, whinging brat, let me tell you that in between the unpacking, fixing, shopping, and bat chasing (eek), we managed to carve out some time to enjoy the summer as much as we could. There was the Panam Games, outdoor concerts, lots of entertaining, and plenty of reading in our lush backyard.

But it still felt like the new old house was hijacking our summer, so we decided to leave it behind and take off on a week-long roadtrip to Cleveland and Pittsburgh! It's a goal of ours to visit all the rust belt cities, so this gave us the opportunity to knock a couple more off our list. 

We've discovered through our travels that the accommodations can really make or break a trip and our airbnb in Cleveland was a perfect example of the former. It was in an old firehouse, complete with fire poles and a huge garage door, and was decorated floor to 15-foot ceiling with unique vintage pieces and art.

It was also in a perfect location: in the same building as a great coffee shop, across the street from a tea shop and cool bar, and a brunch-themed flea market filled the street on the Sunday that we were there! Browsing vintage and handmade while sipping on mimosas and snacking on oysters... could you ask for anything more on vacation?

On to Pittsburgh. What a stunning city. I mean, look at that waterfront. Mike had already been once before, so we spent most of our time away from the downtown, walking the Shadyside and Lawrenceville neighbourhoods. Butler St. was the highlight for me, full of boutiques, restaurants and bars, but it's loooong. We tackled it in three exhausting trips, so make sure you wear your walking shoes or be prepared to get friendly with Uber.

Happy hour was alive and well in  Cleveland, so aside from one amazing Thai meal, our diet consisted mainly of samples, saving our culinary splurges for Pittsburgh. 

If you're planning a visit, I highly recommend CureButcher and the Rye and Teppanyaki Kyoto for dinner; Coca Cafe for breakfast; and Tender and the Wigle distillery for the hard stuff.


Back on the home front, sewing has been a challenge this summer. Our new house has a fantastic attic space that was super excited to work in, but I soon discovered that, in the dead of summer, was a sauna. With half my stuff in the attic and half in the spare bedroom, I managed to crank out two big wedding quilts in August (more detailed posts on those to come).

I also started working on the Carolyn Friedlander Collection Quilt as part of Needlework's quilt along this summer. It's a more modern design than I usually go for, but I think it'll make a beautiful wall-hanging and I'm excited to experiment with colour and learn some new applique techniques. I'm on block 3 of 9 and loving it so far!

So that's pretty much my summer in a nutshell. Moving, road-tripping and quilting. Not too shabby. What did you get up to this summer?

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