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Monday, January 31, 2011

GREAT GIVEAWAY, MUGS !!


OKAY........and so it begins at 12:01am......February 1st and ends at midnight on February 14th......you have 14 days to leave a comment on this posting about who, what or where you love and why you love it. Your comment can be about a person, place or thing. Your name will be written down and placed in a basket and I will draw 2 names, the first will be for the pink mug and the second for the green one. The drawing will be on February 15th and the winner will be announced that day. I will post my email address so you can send me your mailing address. You will have 3 days to respond. If I do not hear from a winner then I will draw again for that mug. Good luck to all of you lovely people :)














Wednesday, January 26, 2011

My Mess

WARNING! Viewing these pics might leave you either blinded in disbelief or identifying with my plight. Believe me, it is taking all I've got to post these pics and not be totally ashamed of myself in the process. Oh I do envy all of you who have a real studio to brag about as your special place. I have a space too and it is like parking a bus in a space meant for a Volkswagon. I am bursting at the seams in my little spot. I have cleaned it and straightened it up many times. My main problem though is when I need something I have to move "this" to get to "that" and in my haste I again have another mess to deal with. So I bought some containers and will organize better and hopefully that will solve some of my problems. I think we have all "been there, done that" when we are looking for a certain pattern or the necessary supplies to use and start to feel so unorganized. Any suggestions are welcome......and next time I post pics of my room it will be something to smile about :)

Yes, some dust, and there is a desk top.




Yes, I do know where everything is!


UFOs......

Close one eye or both eyes when viewing, ha.

Yes, there is one spot that is organized.

The closet is full from floor to ceiling, and organized.



Pathway to the computer desk and sewing machine.


Tons of books/patterns among the "stuff".

   Please don't think badly of me. I do believe in a clean house, a place for everything and everything in it's place. Sometimes it is easier to grab what you need and to close the door behind you.....alas the door is blocked and can't be closed unless I move the "stuff". I could use some shelves, but now that my wood working hubby is sick I will make do with totes and containers. I am sure some of you probably envy my small space. Those who do might not have but a small closet to call their own. We make the best of what we have. It is just hard for me to believe that at one time this room belonged to my oldest daughter and I use to keep a couple of boxes of books and yarn in my bedroom closet. In my interest of all things crafty I have created a monster room. It may be a mess, but it is my mess and I still love it!   P.S. I will keep ya all posted on my progress :)     XOXOXOXO

                         ~*~ LOVE ME, LOVE MY MESS ~*~                                        







Challenges for the New Year

In this game of life we are dealt the cards we must play. And so this New Year has brought challenges to my husband and me in the form of serious health issues. Life can be going along quite smoothly, or at least you think it is, then the rug is pulled out from under you. You can either sit around and feel sorry for yourself and be a pitiful mess, or you can try and be upbeat and meet the challenge. It means a lot to have family, friends and strangers help to boost your feelings up. We are so lucky in so many ways. I thank all of you for your kind words and prayers. For that we are eternally grateful. This morning I had to laugh.......all of you have heard that saying "be careful what you wish for, you just might get it"......so many times I said to my husband, "oh I wish I didn't have to go to work, I just wanna stay home"........I have said that for years, and years, and years......okay, I'm home and I have a new job.....and God will help us through this challenge :)

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Having Fun Quilting

Give me the old time grandma quilt, one that has mismatched seams and pieces of this and that, the one where grandma took the best part of a worn out dress and the remains of grandpa's shirt and stitched them together with love. She didn't have the fancy expensive fabrics that we see in the quilt stores, you know the ones...they cost a small fortune. Grandma had one purpose in mind and that was to keep her family warm during the cold winter months. She didn't quilt because she had a hobby to occupy her time, but rather she did it out of necessity. Nothing went to waste. Her templates were made from paper sacks and sturdy pieces of cardboard. She didn't have a rotary cutter. Each piece was cut by hand using shears (as she called them). Seams didn't always match. Sometimes she would put a patch on top of a spot that was a bit short on fabric. One of the first quilts I saw lying on her bed was one made from wore out blue jeans. There was absolutely nothing pretty about that quilt, but it was HEAVY, and it was WARM! She quilted it using crochet cotton, the kind you use to make doilies. The stitches were long, unlike her small, even stitches used on her cotton quilts. My youngest daughter has one of those denim quilts from grandma. I really should get a pic of it to post. In the mean time I will just post the machine stitched log cabin blue jeans quilt I made my daughter. My friend who quilted it said that when she worked on the quilting that she was just itching to make one herself. It was so very fun :)

Saturday, January 22, 2011

A Bit Refreshed

Thanks again to everyone who offered up words of prayer and encouragement to me during this time of new challenges facing my husband, myself and family. When you can do that for strangers then I say you are all very special indeed. I would say that we are all soul sisters in our love of family and our passions for being creative. Our weapon of choice is a hook, or needle and we do no damage, only to mend and warm others with what we do with our hands. It is enough for us to see the twinkle in someone's eyes when they hold the very thing that we made for them. Some things money can not buy and that is one of them. I hope to be able to do some interesting postings in the near future.

I do want to remind all of you about the free giveaway starting on February 1st and that will be for the coffee/tea mug. There will be 2 chances to win because I am giving away 2 of them. All you need to do is to leave a comment on any posting from Feb.1st through February 14th on what you love and why. It can be about family, pets, a place, your hobby, etc.. The names will be placed in a basket and winners will be drawn on February 15th. You have 2 weeks to post your comment before the winner is drawn. I will contact the winner and we can make arrangements for mailing the package. Good luck! :)


Catching My Breath

I am here just briefly to say I am wore out from all the running back and forth this week to the hospital. It takes an hour one way to go there and I am wore to a frazzle. My husband told me to take a break from all this and I will. Unfortunately there are things at home that need some attention. He will not be alone tomorrow, our daughters will be there most of the day and for that I am grateful. For 5 days I took my crocheting along with me and worked on it just briefly 2 times. I am finding that my mind is just not in doing much of anything when my heart is somewhere else. I also want to thank all of you who are so kind to include us in your prayers. My prayers include all of you as well. God bless us all.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Sick Husband

When I first started this blog I had told myself that I did not want to bring negative or depressing  thoughts to these pages. I still feel that way, but sometimes things just happen in your personal life that shakes you to the core and there is little else you can think about. My husband got sick right before Christmas and on Monday evening after he saw the specialist he was hospitalized. A biopsy was done and the news was not good. I have been spending all of my time going to and from the hospital. There will be treatments and there is hope that things could make a turn for the better. We are hopeful and trying to be strong. God in heaven is starting to know me very well because anymore I spend a lot of my time praying. I also pray for the doctors who are trying to help my husband by using their God-given skills to make him better. So my good friends I ask you to spare a moment of your time and say a little prayer for us as well. Prayer is free, and it goes a long way. God is listening always. I hope he finds it in his heart to put his healing hand on my husband and pull him through all this
 ~ LIFE IS WHAT HAPPENS WHEN YOU PLANNED SOMETHING ELSE ~

Monday, January 17, 2011

Memory Jar Tutorial

Years ago I saw an article in a magazine where a woman had her family write down (inside small pieces of folded paper) the things they were grateful for. All the papers were placed in a jar with a lid. On family night the jar would be brought to the table and one folded paper would be removed from the jar and read aloud. I thought to myself, "what a great idea!" I wanted to do something similar only I'd put my own twist on it, and so " The Memory Jar" was created.

Memory Jars.
The Memory Jar is a very easy and inexpensive idea. It is so easy and with some adult help even a young school age child can do it. The main thing is to find a container suitable to hold the small notes. A glass container with lid might be suitable for a much older child or adult, but please consider a plastic container or a tin one for a younger child so that there is no issue of broken glass. Most discount and Dollar General stores have a variety of pretty and inexpensive containers. You might even pick one up at yard sale or the Good Will. An empty and washed plastic peanut butter container works well for the smaller child and can be decorated. Scraps of ribbon or yarn can be used for the outside bow. You don't have to break the bank for this simple gift.

Pink, Rachael's favorite color.
The next step is to just use some light weight construction paper, scrap book stock or any other paper that can be  written on. If you have some scrap booking scissors you can trim the paper to have pretty edges. The papers can be square, rectangular, round, heart-shaped or whatever you want. Punches can be used for holes in the cards to tie ribbons to fancy up the note (I'm sure you have a stash box of scrap ribbon or yarn). I wrote all the sentiments by hand, my daughters made jars for their dad and me and they wrote all their notes on the computer, printed up the sheet and cut the notes apart. You can embellish notes with whatever your heart desires, the possibilities are endless. My daughters made their little papers in their favorite colors. Even at a distance I know which jar came from which daughter. You can make them assorted colors too. The following are just a few of the memories I found in the my jars from my daughters: Now the fun begins....write

Meghan's memory.
Rachael's sad little memory :(
blessings, sentiments, or memories of whatever you feel is wonderful about that person. For me it was during the years my girls were away at college. I took a paper for each daughter and made a list. I spent about a week thinking and jotting down memories and thoughts of the past and present. The unopened jars were given to my daughters and they took them back to college. I was told there were a lot of laughs and some tears over what was written on those bits of pieces. I was also told how their roommates all loved the jars and also had fun listening. The nice thing about this gift is it is not only very inexpensive to make, but it rates high as a gift that is treasured. I recall my daughters telling me that they had forgotten some of the things I remembered and what wonderful memories were in those jars. I know that once in awhile they get out the jars and re-read the little notes. This also makes a great gift for mothers, fathers, sibling, extended family and friends. It can cheer someone up who is a shut-in or hospitalized. Everyone in an office can give one as a collective gift to someone who is going to another job. It can be given as a gift to any special person in your life. A new mother can write down her  feeling on the papers and put them in the jar. When the child gets older it can be given as a gift to that child. As said before, the possibilities are endless.

Very proud of Meghan!
Oh yes! Rachael & peas!

 
Leaving you with this thought, every day is a memory maker, treasure your memories, they belong to you and worth keeping and sharing. 

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Melancholy Sunday

When I was a child I never thought of Sunday as the first day of the week, rather it was the last day of the weekend, which meant that the next day was Monday and that meant school. I didn't pay much attention to the layout of a calendar either. So when I got older a diet was always started on a Monday and then one day it just dawned on me, if I started my diet on a Monday well then I have already messed up my diet because I should have started it on Sunday......are ya following me here, this crazy train of thought......then it occurred to me that it really didn't matter about starting a diet on any particular day of the week, just so you started.......


Then comes Ground Hog Day......can you remember how you thought about that furry animal coming out and seeing or not seeing his shadow.......I mean it never occurred to me as a child that it was 6 weeks of winter regardless of shadow or not......in fact I was beginning to think I was slow-witted because one day it just dawned on me about that silly ground hog, lol   


 I look back on those simple thoughts and remember the innocence of childhood and how the minutes, hours, days and weeks would crawl.......and how somewhere along the line of being an adult my life's gears were switched into fast forward and now on speed dial. I believe it happened some time when my daughters were in college, I don't know, I was so busy then just wanting them to grow up to be responsible adults, and be on their own.........then came the empty nest........I miss the meals around the table, the endless piles of laundry, the places to go and be, the things needing done, the homework, the quarrels and "MOM!", "MOM!", "MOM!" It all happened, but now it seems like a dream........

My little munchkins......Meghan & Rachael.
Life settled down, and there was actually time to think.....sometimes there is too much time to think. I handle a lot of things by just staying busy. After all, the house doesn't clean itself now does it?, and the dishes don't just leap into the sink and jump out all clean and into the cupboard, the trash doesn't walk itself out into the garbage bin and the laundry, well don't even get me started on that.......I think back to when life seemed so simple and less complicated......yes, tomorrow is Monday. It is about fabric, the fabric that makes up my life, be it good or bad. It isn't the start of a new diet but maybe the start of finding answers to medical problems. My husband has not been feeling well since a couple of days before Christmas. It has taken about 3 weeks to be able to see the specialist. Tomorrow is that day. We are both relieved to be able to go and finally get answers, but fear what the answers might be. Needless to say, I have spent a lot of time praying and just staying busy. Now all the household chores are a blessing, keeping my hands busy and my mind occupied with responsibility. I started to blog in December and have found it to be one of the most pleasurable outlets. So many wonderful people still inhabit this earth and I have found you, some of you have even found me, and for that I thank you. It means a lot to me especially right now. Not every day is filled with laughter, but the ones that aren't can be less troublesome. God Bless you all......please say a little prayer for my man.

Roger, my husband...a son, brother, father, friend, and Vietnam Army Vet.

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Great Giveaway!

I am passing on word about a simply great GIVEAWAY by Megan at  http://lucyandnorman.blogspot.com/
I will tell you no more.....you need to run right over there and check it out for yourself! I warn you all.....I am in the race to win this one, but good luck to everyone (esp. my buddy Jean who found this first).

Cold Outside, Warm Kitchen

I got up this morning and took the recyclables down to the collection township house. We make this trip once a month. It doesn't stop there, I also have a compost bin in the back yard where I throw all my coffee grounds, fruit and veggie peelings and of course weeds. It is amazing when you open the bottom door and see how it all breaks down into black usable soil. We do our small part to save the earth. We are but one drop in the trickle to the small stream that goes to the river, and then to the lake that leads to the ocean. The one grain of sand that helps make the beach.......

 Oh my chores did not stop there, I went out and did some fun work, cleaning up after the dogs. I am sure none of you want or care to have me post a snap shot of that dirty job. Enough said!

I tore the sheets off of the bed and into the washing machine they went......it would be so nice to have warm weather because then I could have had some nice fresh country air and warm breezes to dry my sheets and sleeping tonight would have been so relaxing. I am thankful for the clothes dryer though.

I did not get an early start to my day so our breakfast would be called "brunch". Those of you who live in foreign countries are lucky enough to have open markets where you can shop several times a week for your fruits, vegetables, fish, etc.. Around here if you don't grow it yourself in the summer then you can go to a few local fruit markets that are run by the farm owners. A nearby town closes off it's downtown area and they hold a farmer's market several times during the warmer months. I am told it isn't all about the produce, but some people even bring their crafty items to sell. I am hoping to get a chance to investigate it this summer.

You missed a good breakfast....lol, where were you?
I can't speak for the rest of my country, but only my little corner of the world. There could very well be open markets in the warmer parts of the US during our winters. Yesterday I stopped at the grocery and happened to run across the prettiest mix of fruits. They look yummy don't they? They made the perfect compliment to our brunch.......







Eggs, bacon, home fries, toast and some fruit, apple jelly and coffee.......the artery clogging, heart attach waiting to happen breakfast, the nightmare of every cardiologist on earth.......well, they would approve of the fruit and apple jelly and maybe a few bites of the toast........but it sure was good, this country breakfast........

I re-read my posting and realized that only a nurse could talk about dog poo in one breath and then food in the very next. Forgive me, but it seems like today has been a slow day and I am reduced to either boring you all to tears, gagging you or making you very hungry, lol. If nothing else I have made you laugh and want to come back again on a new day when the air is fresher and so is my posting. God Bless and keep you all in His care.......be good to yourself, and most of all, be good to others. Peace :)

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Coldest Day So Far....

Brrrrrrrr...... it is cold! Yesterday we woke up to about 5-6 inches of snow. My husband and I went out and cleaned the driveway. And, as usual, about 10 minutes after we finished the SNOW PLOW went by and the end of the drive looks like we never touched it! We have lived here 30 years, and this snow plow thing is like a ritual. It just never fails, like Karma (if you believe in that). I swear the guy who drives that plow must have some kind of built in radar that alerts him to the activity in our driveway..."time to do a drive by and shoot some snow in their driveway!"

Yep, it's more snow!

I should have taken my camera out and taken a picture, but after almost 2 hours out there we were both whipped. Besides, he was only doing his job and I will just roll my eyes again and be content that we have 4-wheel drive and can get out on the road if we need to :)


Ziggy tomato.

While scanning through my photos I happened across this snap shot of what I found growing on one of our plants 2 summers ago. I called it "The Ziggy" tomato, and anyone familiar with Ziggy will know of what I am referring to.....lol

A fine mess, compliments of Miss Trixie Belle!

And I found this pic.....and the story behind this: I went to the mailbox across the road, I came up to the house and got side tracked doing something in the garage. Twenty minutes later I went in the house and when I walked around the corner from the kitchen to the hall what do my wondering eyes should appear but this mess! My beautiful yellow baby yarn strung from the living room all the way down the hallway! And there stood the culprit....like she didn't have a clue as to who did that.........

Innocent or guilty..."Yarn? What yarn?"

Evidently doggies like to play with yarn as well as cats! I asked "Miss Trixie Belle" if she had a good time and she acted like I only had myself to blame for forgetting to confine her in her crate. It took me hours that evening to untangle that mess, but eventually it became this........

Popcorn stitch baby blanket.

My one girlfriend loved it and wanted to buy it from me. She oohed and ahhed because one of her favorite colors is yellow. In August she will be a grandma again and her new grand baby will be snug as a little buttercup.

It gives me great joy to be able to look through my albums and share pictures with all of you, maybe to give you all a smile, a laugh or just allow you to remember some funny happening in your life. Today my daughters are flying from Ohio to Nevada. I will worry till they are safely back on the ground again. This evening I go out to dinner with the girls from my old job. There will be 5 of us eating and catching up on what is new, and just enjoying each others company. It will be good to get out for awhile. Cabin fever is starting to set in a bit and I look forward to "girl time".....Tomorrow I will snap a pic of the sign that hangs right above my bed .....I leave you with it's words, this thought, a quote but I don't know who to give credit to for writing such beautiful words......

                                   "WRITE IT ON YOUR HEART 
      THAT THE ONES YOU LOVE ARE LIFE'S MOST PRECIOUS GIFTS"

                                    
      

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Busy Morning & February Giveaway

Yesterday afternoon I went in the basement and low and behold what did I find but our potatoes from the summer's garden were sprouted, and I don't mean just a few little sprouts, but these whopping ones! And to make matters worse, there is a 5-gallon utility bucket, also with potatoes, sitting on the floor right next to this basket. The basement is the coolest place in the house. We shared with our family, but this last crop was a bit more than we can manage to eat up. With an empty nest I don't cook like I use to. My husband usually keeps the "POTATO & ONION" bin full and had mentioned the spuds were sprouting, but heavens, I never realized they looked this bad. If it was planting time we could plant them, lol. Awhile back we made potato soup and it was yummy. Then there was an evening when I mashed some up to have with dinner. I am trying to figure out what I can do to salvage them. I don't believe in waste. 

More sprouts than potato!
So potato salad it was, only no eggs in the house (I need chickens!), I ran into town for some (lol, not chickens, lol but eggs, ha ha ha ), came back and made up this delectable batch of calories......yeah, I know it is winter, but at our house we do not discriminate, and if it is tasty we eat it....besides if you can still buy it at the deli, then you can still make it in your kitchen. It doesn't matter if it is summer or winter homemade potato salad rules!

My homemade potato salad.
I received the nicest comment from Terrie in Hong Kong. Thank you for your sweet words. Yes, I have a few pictures of my daughter's big ole cat Jack and one of her other cat Tootsie. So I post them just for you dear girl. As you can see, he is a hefty cat weighing in at around 25 pounds!

Meghan's Jack.
Jack.
Jack again.
And then there is the elusive Tootsie. Hiding in the plants and watching birds & squirrels.
I did get a chance to crochet a bit on the baby shawl and it is coming along beautifully. As much as I enjoy working on it I am really trying to resist the temptation of starting the sweater, cap and booties. Now I know for a fact if I started the sweater I would want to work again on the shawl, so I will just go ahead and be firm with myself. It doesn't help that I jump from all of the blogs and see what everyone else is doing. I am beginning to think of myself as a spoiled child, "I want to do that too! Let Me! Let Me!" I think you all get the picture. I haven't done embroidery in years and all of a sudden after looking at Vicki's beautiful work over at turkey feathers, it makes me want to get out the floss and needle. Forgive the quality of the photo. It was taken this evening and the lighting wasn't the best.
Baby shawl, a work in progress.
Now I have something to show you all...my new coffee/tea/cocoa mug. The coffee I made in it today was scrumptious and I have a green mug also. The best part is that you can have one too because I received 4 as a free gift for my purchases at a local craft store. I don't need them all so I have decided to offer up a "free giveaway" to my FOLLOWERS starting on February 1st and ending on Valentines Day on February 14th. The name of the winners will be posted on the 15th. Yes, I said "winners" for I plan to give away a pink mug to the first name drawn and a green one to the second name winner. So folks, you have 2 chances to win. Now what you need to do is come to my blog and post a comment on any of my posting done during that 14-day period. Tell me who or what you love and why you love it. That's all you have to do. I will contact the winner by email for a shipping address, so please check here, on this blog on the 15th to see if you won and I will post my email address so you can send me your mailing address. Good luck!!

My new mug.

Inside it says,  "Knit one Slip one".

Comes in a box of course.
The handle.
Green one has all the same features, it is just green with a bit of a different yarn design.
So my dears, I will leave you with gentle words and kind thoughts........ Peace                 

Monday, January 10, 2011

HURRAH!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I am absolutely THRILLED!!!! Trial and error, but I figured out how to grab those blogger patches and I'm in business now. It would seem that I was doing everything right except when I pasted the address, I was pasting it at the top of the form in the TITLE spot when I should have been pasting it in the CONTENT area just under it. I plan to have quite a collection to pretty up my blog and in the end it is a good thing because people seeing them on my pages might want to come visit you. It is a win win situation as I see it. I am grinning right now like the Cheshire Cat.....sometimes you just have to step away for a bit and try again. Well you all need to excuse me now, for I am going out and about grabbin' up lovely patches.  My next project is to figure out how to have a patch of my very own for everyone else to grab........I hope I won't have to come out on these pages and whine some more about figuring that out, lol.......later my pretties........

Monday Doldrums, Patch Grabbing

My first time planting cockscomb, and they were huge!

My giant sunflower :)
Today the sun is shining above the gray clouds. It is trying to peek through. Have you ever noticed that when the sun shines it perks you up? I could use more sunshine today. I hope where ever you are that the sun is shining or at least you can see the beautiful moon and stars. Some of my summer flowers came to brighten my gloomy mood and to remind me to smile :) I am like a magnet, drawn to Blogland. I seem to get very little done as far as my housework. While I am enjoying everyone's postings I can hear that little voice in the back of my head reminding me that there are things to do. I would much rather be crocheting, knitting or quilting.

I want to thank my friend Jean for trying to instruct me on how to copy and paste blog patches to my page. For some reason I still can't get it and it is frustrating. I have tried on 3 separate days yet no luck. When I paste the URL in then it tells me there are too many letters, so what the heck is up with that? I tried shortening it, having no clue how short (but it said 100 letters and I kinda questimated). And then it wants a description and I have no clue so I just typed in something i.e. "QUILTING" and it saved it, but when I came to my page there was no patch from the other blog, just crazy lettering and the word QUILTING......hence, I removed that mess. I even went to Help page and still not much luck. I am thinking, "now Sue, This has got to be easy and you are making it hard." So Jean if you read this post you will know I am still at a loss for this grabbing patches thing and some of you out there seem to be quite proficient in it. I will get over my stupidity just as soon as I pick up my crochet hook, or the dust rag.....whatever flies in my hand first, lol........I guess we shouldn't sweat the small stuff....hope you all have a good day. Piece for Peace........

My impatiens needing weeding.

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~WRITE IT ON YOUR HEART................
THAT THE ONES YOU LOVE ARE LIFE'S MOST PRECIOUS GIFTS~