Jun 20 2015

Rain, Rain, Rain

Published by under family

We have been saturated with rain! Everyone is so tired of the gray, rainy days. Our grass is getting long and I fear we will need a hay baler to mow or it will all be laying on top. I hate it like that because the dogs drag it all through the house.

My new grandson is coming to visit today and will be here all week. Oh, his mom and dad are coming too. LOL The little guy is 3 weeks old today. He is so cute and easy. He only cries when he is hungry. The new pampers have a colored strip down the front that changes color when he is wet. How easy is that?! I didn’t think I was that old but they sure do have different things than when my kids were babies. My babies are 34 and 30.

Our garden was growing like crazy. The zucchini plants have lots of blooms and that means lots of zucchini to eat. I love making bread with zucchini and we throw it on the grill for more healthy eating. I’m afraid, with all the rain, that our tomatoes will be rotten on their bottoms. We have tons of radishes, which I don’t really like but are fun to grow. We also have onions and potatoes.

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Jun 10 2015

Quilt Shops!

Published by under creating

The town of Hamilton, Missouri is filled with quilt shops.  photo IMG_1017_zpsp1lebqjv.jpg

This past, beautiful, Saturday, I was able to check out the Missouri Star Quilt Company. The only thing I purchased was a t-shirt that said Missouri Star Quilt Co. It wasn’t that I had trouble finding something to buy. I found so many things but, I will be going back in September so I plan on making a list of items I need to purchase! Each of the five shops I visited, had a theme. One shop was filled with batik fabrics while another held novelty prints and solids. The main shop had so many sample quilts that I almost succumbed to buying patterns and fabric. I especially liked a quilt that had clay pots with flowers spouting from each pot. The flowers were Dresden shaped. I might have to buy that kit.
There were three other shops, a grocery, bakery and antique shop. We ate at the Blue Sage Restaurant. It was definitely a special place to eat. I’d like to try the hamburger cafe next time. It will be fun to go back and see what is new.

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Jun 04 2015

Reading a Great Book

Published by under entertainment

I have been on a roll this past week. I went for such a long streak, not able to find a good book to read. Now, I just read two great books. That is two in a row!

I just finished reading What She Left Behind by Ellen Marie Wiseman. I was introduced to this author when I read her book, The Plum Tree. I was turning pages as fast as I could to find out what happened to the family in this awesome book. I don’t usually like to read books that talk about the atrocities of the holocaust. I am always so upset that people could treat other people so badly. This book gave some accounts of the horrible treatment people endured in the concentration camps but the book was more about how a German family dealt with the laws and regulations of a horrible dictator. The love story in this book was so full of hope and determination. I enjoyed learning how a German family gardened, cooked and even how they raised chickens. The writer’s words made me feel as if I could smell the ferns and trees in the woods. I could visualize the scenery of a quaint German village. It was an enjoyable book.
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What She Left Behind reached into my love of mystery. I like to watch police news shows, Dateline and 20/20. I am curious about devious minds and the lives of people. What She Left Behind told two stories. One dealt with a teenager who’s mother was in prison, convicted of killing her husband, the girls father. The teen, Izzy, works with her foster parents on a project that deals with researching history of an asylum for the mentally insane. Oh my goodness! The things they did to people in those places was horrible. It was easy for someone to be sent to a mental hospital for what would be considered normal today. Scary stuff! The project is the second story of the book, dealing with Clara who is sent away because her father didn’t want her to marry an immigrant. She was sane! I could not wait to turn each page to find out if she was ever able to escape or let out to regain her life.

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May 28 2015

Did I Forget Something?

Published by under a bit of everything

Whenever I find myself with free time, I wonder what it is I have forgotten. Did I forget to pick someone up? Did I forget a doctor appointment? LOL

I am sitting outside on our front porch, rocking away in the rocking chair. There is a small breeze and the temperature is, I am guessing, in the seventies. There doesn’t seem to be any humidity. It is the perfect setting to sit and rock.

Soon, I will get up and eat the chicken salad that hubby and I made. I diced the chicken and boiled the eggs. He cut the grapes and celery and threw everything together with some relish and mayonnaise. I tested it awhile ago and it is yummy.

I feel a little lost when so many of my favorite television shows are finished for the season. No more The Voice, Grey’s Anatomy or The Good Wife. I just surf until it is time to go to bed.

I just finished reading The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks. It is a fascinating, true story. I might have to read it again just to remember all the history and explanations of how her DNA fueled medical research.

Time to dish out the chicken salad.

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May 26 2015

Producing Quilts

Published by under creating

I have not made a quilt in so long that I hope I remember how to cut fabric! I have fortunately been quilting quilts on the longarm. I am amazed at all the different quilts that have come to me to be quilted. I am honored that so many trust me to put the finishing touches on their quilts.

I thought about how hard it would be to turn over a quilt that I had put hours into and have a longarmer mess it up. It could happen. Just as a musician searches for their lx 18 to achieve live sound and music replay applications, a quilter pours their heart into each stitch of a quilt. I always take my time and listed to what the quilter expects me to do.

Some quilters want intricate quilting done on each and every block. That is very time consuming and costs quite a bit more to have quilted. When doing custom quilting, I use a lot of different rulers to come up with intricate designs that will enhance but not take away from the quilt design itself.
This is how I quilted a quilt for my Aunt Grace. Aunt Grace made the quilt and I quilted it on the longarm.

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For a common quilt, I might use a pantograph that seems to sit in the background of the quilt. Many times it is hard to follow the design of the stitching as it flows from each block. This type of quilting goes faster and is less expensive. There are thousands of pantographs from which to choose. The type of pantograph I choose, often goes with the theme of the quilt. For instance, with a red, white and blue quilt, I might choose a star and circle pantograph. A quilt made for a cancer patient calls for a beautiful cancer ribbon design. A school quilt might need a tiger paw print here and there. I think you get the idea.

It is fun and I hope my customers are always happy with my vision.

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May 22 2015

Gone Fishin’

Published by under a bit of everything

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Yep! It is that time of year. Hubby is down south, on the water. He is catching large bluegill and couldn’t be happier. The weather is a tad bit cold but maybe that is why they are catching such big fish.

I closed the store today and plan to go over to my mom’s house and sew all day! It is going to be a great day. I haven’t been to mom’s since she got home from Arizona. That is awful but with Mother’s Day and the Spartan Race taking up the weekends, I haven’t had a chance to go. She and I have been shopping and she has checked on my long arm quilting progress. I cannot wait to get into the “zone” and sew all day today.

I hope everyone is able to take a day off this Memorial Day weekend. I am especially grateful to the men and women who serve and have given it all to make our country free.

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May 17 2015

Challenge

Published by under health

 photo IMG_0896_zpsl6uevhhr.jpgYesterday, my friend, Linda, and I accompanied our daughters to Metamorah, Indiana so they could participate in a Spartan Race. It had rained the day before the race which made the course very muddy. My daughter and my friend’s daughter are both very physically fit but the mud made this run quite the adventure. My daughter is so sore from pulling herself up out of mud holes and climbing up hills. There were 22 obstacles in the 6 mile course. They were challenging but doable. The mud was the beast. They finished the course and tried to wash the mud out of their clothing. I’m glad we brought lots of towels for them to sit on in the car. It was a mess!

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May 14 2015

Me vs Holly Bush

Published by under home

I won!
Our holly bush died last year. A few new sprigs were trying to grow but the entire bush was misshapen and looked out of place. I wanted it gone. I tried to dig it out last year but the ground was too hard so I gave up. We had a bit of rain on Monday and I decided the bush was leaving. I went to the shed and picked up the shovel. Why was I intent on working so hard?
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I had not planned on working in the yard buy my daughter found a pit bull dog wandering in the middle of our busy street and brought him home. We put him in the back yard and called the various animal shelters to let them know he was here. I put the word out on Facebook and hoped for the best. He was a howler and would only relax when I was in the backyard with him. That is why I decided to tackle the holly bush. It took all afternoon to get that bush dug out and, miraculously, the dog’s owners called and claimed him. They were so relieved to get their dog back. I was so happy that the dog was “wanted”.

I had no idea that holly bushes roots were so deep. I had to use the shovel to cut the extended tangles of roots and pull the bush out. My back is yelling at me! I raked the dirt back to make the flower bed look uniform and now I wait to see how long it takes hubby to notice the bush is gone. It was on his to do list. Ha!

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May 12 2015

Brrr!

Published by under a bit of everything

It is cold outside! The sun is shining.
It has been a weird spring. We had a snow storm in April and I thought it would never warm up but it finally turned nice the first of May. We had a nice weekend for Mother’s Day but now it is cold again.

We had both of our mothers come for dinner on Mother’s Day. Hubby grilled chicken and my mom brought potato salad. It was nice to have my mom home from her winter retreat. She brought me many quilts to be quilted. Yippee! I cannot wait to get started.

Hubby was sick in bed yesterday. He rarely gets sick so it was scary. He feels better today but is worn out. I hope he continues to feel better as the day progresses. He hates being sick and I felt so bad for him. Thankfully, he feels lots better this morning.

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May 02 2015

Spring Has Finally Sprung!

Published by under entertainment

I was about to give up on Indiana! I have always enjoyed living where we get to experience all four seasons and have been looking forward to warm weather. I love being able to open the windows and let the fresh air in. The month of April brought us more snow! I was not happy. Now, finally, in May we are having a nice spring. The daffodils are up in my flower beds and the trees in town are in full bloom in pinks and reds. It is a beautiful time of year.

My good friend and her daughter have been preparing to walk in the mini marathon in Indianapolis. They have checked out AvidMax to get the proper gear and have been increasing their walk lengths each day this past month. They arrived in Indianapolis this morning and walked the eleven miles! They walked around the speedway where the Indy 500 is held and even kissed the bricks as they crossed the historic original speedway bricks. I am so excited for them. Maybe next year, my daughter and I can run or walk this race. It looked like a lot of fun.

My daughter and I have had several starts and stops on our running excursions this year. We had a few nice days in February and ran but then it got treacherous to try to be outdoors and so our plans were halted. It is so frustrating to have the willingness but are thwarted by the weather. Excuses aside, I hope we get started again. It feels good to get in shape.

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