Summer projects for the road

When our family goes on vacation, we almost always drive, no matter how far we’re going — a couple years ago, we drove from Pennsylvania up to British Columbia, down the Pacific coast, then back across the country to go home. This gives us ample time to listen to audiobooks (seems to be the only time my husband and I listen to Tess Gerritsen), although some books are too complex for anything but routine driving conditions (Oryx and Crake, Blue). The other thing it gives me time for is creating something with my hands.

On previous trips, I’ve knitted sweaters, crocheted and knitted bookmarks, even crocheted doilies (not that I keep any out on our tables). It keeps me busy, and it also helps recharge my muse because I’m indulging in a form of creation that doesn’t require words.

I’ve decided to do something different for our next trip: circular patchwork (see Carol Britts program for pictures to give you an idea). I’ll have to prep all the materials ahead of time — circles, batting, squares — but as I create each block, it’s already quilted. Single blocks can be readily held on my lap, and even joining finished squares into strips should be feasible in the car.

I’m not a hand pieced or quilter — it takes too long. I’d rather use a machine and have a finished product. So many calls on my time! On a trip, though, I’ll have time. I’ll also be developing a new skill. Will I be able to finish a quilt on a trip? No idea, but I can at least start and see how far I get.

The hardest part? May be going through my fabric stash and deciding what to work with!

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  1. When we would go on road trips, I got to do all the driving (a treat – I love to drive), so I couldn’t do much in the way of reading or handcrafts. Wayne took photos, and we took lots of detours and made lots of stops – for scenic views, bookstores, craft shops and interesting restaurants. We often added a day of travel time here and there just because of those distractions.

    • That sounds like lots of fun. We do lots of stops along the way, although not usually at bookstores.

      I love to drive, too, but oddly, mostly when I’m alone. I got my license so late, I’m always afraid I’m being judged on my driving ability.

      Thanks for sharing!

  2. I’m thankful you guys could stop and see us on that last big trip two years ago. (Two years? Already? Seriously?) We haven’t done as long a trip as you, but downloaded podcasts and audio books are good for us. And we catch up on talking! 😛

    When I was a kid, we played alphabet games–spotting the letters in order on signs. I remember watching closely for Dairy Queens because where else could you spot a Q?

    Also (child of the 60s here) we counted ‘beetles’ (VW bugs). Each was worth a point, and a Beetle Bus was worth 10.

    • I know — it hardly seems like it’s two years already!

      As kids, we didn’t do letters in order, but we did do out-of-state license plates, I think. That was easy in Nevada: California was the most common, but we could see pretty much every state and most of the Canadian provinces. I also loved reading. Then, of course, there was that ever popular kids’ game, “He’s on my side of the seat,” with occasional segues into “She’s touching me!”

      Ooh, counting Bugs!

      Thanks for stopping in and commenting!

  3. I love road trips! But even more than a road trip, I love a long distance train ride. My best experience of that was crossing Canada from Vancouver to Toronto. Spectacular!

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