Sunday, December 15, 2013

Sunday activities and a new book block

Our church has two services every Sunday and an afternoon "Praise" service once a month. Made up of people from different countries and different Christian traditions, other than the English language (spoken in a variety of accents), it is the center of a hodge-podge of activity.

Yesterday, our choir was scheduled to sing at the first service ... which meant catching the train to town as close to seven as possible.

Of course, after singing, I wanted to attend the second service because the children were putting on a Christmas program in place of the children's message.... and what a fine job they did too, including a drama and singing.

Then, after the second service, there was caroling on the front steps of the church. Well, I had to stay for that, of course.

Then, at four, there was a "Family Concert" put on by the embassy choir. My Cub Scouts were coming so I needed to stay for that and certainly not enough time to go home and come back.

Luckily, I had cut pieces for my next book block. They were packed in a zip-lock baggie and I could spend time doing a bit of sewing. THEN, after the pieces were almost all together, I found that the total look was just too pink looking. The more I looked, the more I thought I needed a touch of green ... so I spent some time un-sewing and finished up the wait by reading my next book club book.

By the time the concert was over, I headed home alone. Donations from the concert were to go to the church's homeless mission, which Paul is in charge of, so he had things to take care of before returning. It was dark by then and the trees along the avenue were lit for shoppers to enjoy.

This would be a wonderful place for taking pictures, BUT
there are guards everywhere keeping people from stopping in the middle of the crosswalk to take pictures.

Over the street, there are several overhead walk-overs. but standing at the bottom on both sides of the street, are guards keeping people from going up on that bridge. (A perfect place to enjoy the scene and take pictures).

I can understand that it might be dangerous to have too many people on the bridge at any given time, but certainly the guards could control numbers to only ten at a time or whatever they consider safe. I can't see much point in just sanding in front of a roped off stairs doing nothing but guarding the sign that says no passing.

It probably hinders the shopping as well because there are very few level crossings.

A family friend took this picture of me with the walk-over behind.

For a number of years, the lights were not put up. The story I heard was that there was concern for the Zelkova trees.

Of course, the lighting brings many, many people into the area and the stores were not happy to have no lights.

About two or three years ago, the lighting was resumed.

It was rather late for dinner by the time I got home and I had to wait for Paul, so I went up to my light green scrap bin to pull out fabrics that might work with my book block.

The book club book for November was "Aunt Jane of Kentucky" by Eliza Calvert Hall.

I had begun reading the book on line but was having a lot of trouble trying to read on a computer screen.

Luckily, my son sent me a paper copy and I was able to start over and enjoy the book.

The last story in the book is called "Gardens of Memory" and probably my favorite of all because I grew up in a garden. My dad was a metallurgical engineer but he had a life-long passion for roses, which he photographed and hybridized as well.

Each chapter/story in the book includes mention of Aunt Jane's garden. Also mentioned is a "garden house". There is not a description of that garden house, but we had a screened-in porch-type garden house where I grew up. As a kid, sometimes we slept out in that "house" with critters all around, as we were on the very edge of a wooded park, the Euclid Creek Reservation.

This block I found in "5,500 Quilt Block Designs" by Maggie Malone, a gift from my #2 daughter.
Called "Garden Gazebo", it seemed fitting and I could use more than two or three fabrics... my criteria, since I want to include the paisley fabric. The rejected pieces are off to the side and I included fabric from the tree quilt made very long ago. (my memories as well as Aunt Jane's)

When I looked for my pattern to cut new triangles, this is what I found...

Well, a big dog with separation anxiety must have been unhappy being left home alone from early morning to late evening.

This was the only pattern piece left!

Well, I probably won't make this block again anyway.

Decorating the table for a late dinner was this Christmas Cactus.

The pale pinkish white flowers have a thin red line in the center.

This is an interesting pot of flowers because this flower is on the green segments.

The thinner reddish sections are from a different plant and you can see a small red bud at the tip of one segment on the left.

When sections get broken off, I often stick them into the dirt in the same pot. When someone else breaks them, and I find them on the floor, I sometimes stick them in the wrong pot. I guess that is what happened here. Well, we will get an early Christmas in pink and a later one in red ... all in one pot!


  1. Sounds like a lovely day in Omotesando. When it's busy there you can really catch the excitement yourself.

  2. You write such long and descriptive blog posts!
    The children's performance looks very professional! I am sure visitors to Omotesando were not only attracted by the lit trees but by the carol singing as well.
    I can see that the block looks much better when you have balanced out the pink with some green.
    Green are you fingers, as the Christmas Cactus is opening just in time for the season!

  3. You certainly had a very full day - it all sounds wonderful. The block is great - I love how you pick the blocks. And the flowering cactus - how nice to have two blooming times in two colors.

  4. A lovely day full of singing, lovely pink block, and 2 flowers in one pot, a bonus for Christmas. Greetings from Jean

  5. Lovely day - lovely lights - lovely block - lovely/lonely dog - and beautiful one-pot gardening - all in one wonderful post - ;))

  6. I LOVE the picture of you with the trees behind you .. you look so happy x

  7. Omotesando! I have wonderful memories walking that street with my daughter during the Christmas Holidays. My daughter was Mary for the yearly Christmas program at Tokyo Union Church one year (long time ago). Thanks for sharing the pictures!

    1. As a "noreply" blogger, I often wish we could compare notes and your comments keep me guessing.

  8. What a wonderful day you had!! And such a beautiful display of lights.

  9. What a beautiful Christmas scene with the lights on the trees. It is fun to read about your Christmas activities. Also I am glad to know that someone else finds it difficult to read a book on a computer screen. A real book is so much better. I hope that real books don't become extinct !

  10. I laughed at your pattern piece. Okay~~ Nikko doesn't eat cookies but he does eat quilt patterns! I have a cat that does that too.