Thursday, July 23, 2009

Home Again

Hubby & I arrived home last night from an absolutely wonderful vacation! For a week we visited one of the Portugese Azores Islands called Terceria - we stayed with friends who live there, and they were so generous with their time and their home and their transportation - we felt like part of the family when we left! Just a couple pictures of some of the favorite things we saw. Most of the houses are painted white, with brightly colored doors, window frames, and railings.

The island was formed by a volcanic eruption and the rocks had to be cleared before agriculture could begin (500+ years ago). All the volcanic rocks were dry stacked into walls dividing nearly the entire island into these picturesque patchwork quilts. Be sure to click on the second picture here to get the full effect of the fields and fences.

Most of the narrow streets and sidewalks are paved with cobblestones - the sidewalks have beautiful designs incorporated into them using different colored stones, like this one.

And the flowers were breathtaking! They grow wild all over the island and it just boggled my mind to see huge swaths of them wherever we went! Hydrangas, oleanders, morning glory, nasturtiums and roses, to name a few.

Our plane flew into Boston on the way home, and since we'd never been there we decided to spend a couple days exploring. We walked the Freedom Trail, wandered Beacon Hill, and Boston Commons. Lots of history there! I loved the mosaic tile designs on the floor of the State House - great inspiration for a future hooked rug I think! My dad grew up in Boston so it was nice to see where he came from.

This is the project I took with me so I had handwork to keep me busy on the plane, in the airports, and in the hotel room. When I first prepared the baskets I had planned to do machine applique, but I'm glad I was able to do these by hand. Still need to do lots more to get it to the size I want.
Our last night in Boston we got tickets to see the Blue Man Group, which was extremely entertaining. Amazing how they communicate with the audience without ever saying a single word. I can understand why they're able to perform all around the world without any language barriers!
And as always, the best part of any vacation is coming home again and sleeping in my own bed! Now I have lots of blog reading to catch up on to see what everyone has been up to!


Linda - Behind My Red Door said...

WOW - those pictures are amazing! It looks so pretty there. How fortunate to have friends to stay with too.

We saw Blue Man group last summer in Boston. Pretty unique huh?

All in all it sounds like a week to remember.

carolyn@simple~primitive~devotion said...

Welcome home! What awesome photos! Looks like a beautiful place and sounds like you had a wonderful time.
I have never seen Blue Man Group live, but I have seen them on tv, and they are amazing.
Your basket quilt looks great too!
Enjoy your weekend back home. :)

Cathy said...

Welcome home Gayle! I just knew Portugal would be colorful. How fun! I love the pics of the streets in Boston. So much inspiration in such simple things. Great pics! Thanks!

Cathy ♥

Charlotte said...

I find it very interesting that your interests affect how you see the whole world. Quilt blocks & hooked rug patterns everywhere!