Thursday, June 28, 2012

sew many stitches

I have been stitchin' and stichin' this past week!
And loving almost every minute of  it.

Friday, I put off nap-time as long as I possibly could,
waiting for the UPS man to bring my book.
About 1:52, I decided I'd just have to do something else while sitting in with Lexi,
I couldn't wait any longer to get her to bed.
I turned on the stove to start my coffee.
(in the little espresso maker Nate bought me in France years ago :-)
I put a spoon of xylitol, a few shakes of creamer, and some coconut milk in my cup.
Just as I was adding the coffee, I heard the truck rumbling up the drive.
I was so happy!!
As with the other two Natalie Chanin books, I read it cover to cover in one sitting.
(setting?)
~
Ya'll,
I have so many projects going on  right now!

I still need to cut away the top layer on the two little half daisies

Another muslin.
(This time from the 2nd book - I call it the 'princess seam' shirt. 
 I'm having a hard time remembering which style shirt / dress / skirt is in which book!
I need to make a chart. I'm only half-kidding.)
It was kind of silly of me to embellish a muslin, but here's the thing.
One.
I made some adjustments to the pattern based on the fit of the second muslin I made from the camisole pattern,
so I was pretty sure it'd fit across the bust. (it does - bottom is fuller than I prefer, but oh well. 
I adjusted the pattern for next time.)
Two.
I need something else to wear with my sassy shoes.



I only have one corral shirt. 
Which meant I wasn't wearing my sweet sandals as often as I should have been.
I saw Katy's book cover, and decided,
"Yes! I have tons of my blue sheet left. I have a $ .25 corral tank top in my repurposing stash.
I'll just put 'em together!"
I bought the daisy pattern from Hobby Lobby
and used watered down acrylic paint mixed with textile medium to stencil the fabric.

This is the back :-)  A certain little 3 yr old got up from dinner and touched my fabric before the paint was even dry.
So, yes, that is food that you see on it. grilled chicken, perhaps.   : /

I don't want to do a ton of hand sewing on it, since the quality of the fabric is horrible,
so I'm waiting to hem it and bind the neck and arms until I get some matching machine thread.
I know ~ you don't hem Alabama Chanin garments, but this fabric just rolls up too much.

the back side of the front panel
~

I decided (hopefully, not foolishly!) to not make a 3rd muslin of the 8-panel shirt.
I made the changes to the pattern, and just went with it.
I had planned on machine sewing the seams, and doing the rest by hand,
but I hadn't managed to get the first two seams sewn by naptime,
(have you gathered that I get to sit with my feet up while I wait for Lex' to fall asleep?
I either read or sew. Sometimes I visit my favorite blogs...)
Since I couldn't get started on beading, 
and I'd already finished the one book I checked out for myself,
Saving CeeCee Honeycutt (good, but not fabulous)
I figured I may as well grab my white thread and sew the seams by hand.
I don't imagine this will surprise you, but I loved making every tiny little stitch!
I felt like all those hours hand-quilting totally prepared me for the task.
Which didn't feel one bit like a task!
(And was sooo much easier than quilting!)

The double stick tape was not my ingenious invention; I stole that.
Once I got a few things figured out and developed a rhythm, I started enjoying the beading some,
but I don't enjoy the beading nearly as much as the 'seaming'. 
~  
I didn't have quite enough purple, so we did some color blocking. I was pretty tickled how nicely things lined up!

Kacy asked me Sunday if I could make her a swim suit;
thanks to Crossfit, she now has a bootie
and her current suit doesn't cover it decently.
I used some crappy swimsuit fabric and some FOE that I had a lot of 
to make a muslin of the panties bottoms.
She laughed when I called her to try them on (red with silver legs and waist, they look like underoos ;-)
but then told me she was keeping them 'cause they were comfy :-)
They were not made well ~ they were made quickly.
I told her, under no circumstances, was she to show them to her mother
and tell her that I could make her a wedding dress if she didn't find one she loved.
~
On Monday, I squeezed in reading Sheet Music.
Tony and Kacy were given it as part of their pre-marital counseling.
He told Kacy to go ahead and read it now, but said Ton' should wait 'til right before the wedding.
I thought that I remembered it being recommended 
to save a good portion of the book for honeymoon and beyond, so I gave it a quick run-through.
I agreed whole-heartedly with the author 
who suggested only reading the 1st four chapters before marriage.
I think the book goes a long way towards a healthy view of Christian sex,
and I agree with him in many (but definitely not all) ways
but I don't think I'm really a Leman fan.
And I really could have done without quite so much talking to and about 'Mr Happy'.
And I'm not entirely convinced he's as imaginative as he thinks he is ;-)

Yesterday 
I started reading Captivating, because the speaker at the retreat that Eva made me go to
highly, highly recommended it. 
I have no feelings one way or the other about the book so far...
~
I've got fabric on order, and a bunch of windows open on my computer for more fabric,
so I don't know if much reading will be happening in the next few weeks,
but I am fairly certain there will be lots of happy stitching.



Of course ~ if you want to see what others are sewing and reading this week, visit

needle and thREAD

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

a day off


Jeremiah and Josiah decided to give me the day off today!
(only from cooking, but hey ~ I take what I get :-)

For breakfast, they made scrambled eggs with cheese and bacon bits
and lunch was tuna salad, cucumber slices, and salty almonds.
Totally by themselves.
And they left surprisingly little mess!
I was informed I may have to help with dinner, though, 
'since that has to be a big meal'.

Thanks, guys, for givin' Momma a break!
I love you!!

Friday, June 22, 2012

figured it out :-)


Thanks for all your suggestions!
After hours and hours of searching and being quite picky 
(Tyler was rejecting cabins and cottages because of their location. Whatever.)
I rejected a cabin because the grass by the water was too scraggly.
Another was rejected because I didn't like the style of a dresser.
you know ~ important things ;-)
we finally decided on a cabin on the White River for our upcoming anniversary.



The water is supposedly so cold, it'll lower the air temperature around it by about 10 degrees.
(We'll let you know how that works out)

Thursday, June 21, 2012

third time's a charm?


I'm joining Elizabeth's

needle and thREAD
 again

My sewing and reading this week have gone hand in hand.

Last Thursday, after not having visited Alabama Chanin's journal in months,
I decided to take a peek and saw this top.

picture from Alabama Chanin
I never wear white ~ but I love this!
So much so, that I ordered the book that contains the pattern.
It just so happened to arrive the very next day 
(I love it when Amazon gives me overnight shipping for free!)
right as I was heading in to lay Lexi down for a nap.
Perfect!
Just like I did with my first Alabama Chanin book, Studio Sewing + Design,
I read it cover to cover in one sitting.
~
Being genetically predisposed to not following patterns or recipes exactly,
(although, I did follow Kacy's moms' recipe for Gumbo for Kacy's birthday exactly exactly)
I had to change things up.
The neckline, I knew, would need to be raised about an inch.
and I knew I'd want the shirt a bit longer in front.
To trace the pattern and make adjustments, I used my lightbox


also known as, a window.
I knew changing the neckline, since it was comprised of 2 pattern pieces, would be tricky
(plus, I don't think, when they made the larger sizes, they did it correctly; 
the upper left portion of the piece I am tracing in the above photo 
should only be a 1/4 seam allowance on the side, with no seam allowance at the neck. 
This caused me an hour of consternation and mutterings and texting my sewing buddy)
so what I did, was leave those neck lines intact when I cut out the pattern, 
then overlapped the edges of the pattern pieces 1/4 inch, 
folding the seam allowances to the side and marked then cut the new neckline.
It worked perfectly!
~
Not wanting to take f o r e v e r  handstitching a muslin, I opted to use the machine.
I used a size L instead of XL, hoping it would fit snug enough that I can lose weight and it'll still look decent,
without being too tight, right now.
But the L was too snug, and I wanted it longer still (I'd added about 1 1/2 inches to the front)
so I taped pattern sheets to the window again
and started over.
The results were much better, but still too short.
And the fit at the armholes wasn't exactly perfect, 
and the neck ended up a tiny smidge too wide, and it doesn't lay just right
so it was back to the drawing board to alter the pattern again.

You would think all of this work would be frustrating to me,
but it really hasn't been.
(I actually wore muslin #2 all day yesterday; I tried it on to check the fit before finishing the neck and arms
and I just never took it off. It is soo comfortable)
I'm going for perfection here.
Attainable perfection, at least ;-)
So
today,
it's round three.
But hey, third time's a charm, right?



Yesterday, I pulled out and re-read Alabama Studio Sewing + Design again.
Then I ordered the second Alabama Chanin book (my third)
I just couldn't help myself.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

much less nasty

When I titled the bathroom project Operation Less Nasty, I had no idea how smart that was.
I mean, if it was Operation Pretty the Bathroom, or Operation Nice Bathroom,
we'd have had to paint the ceiling.
As its turns out, though, with Operation Less Nasty,
we could simply cover termite tracks with drywall mud and viola ~ success.
Sure, it would look better with the ceiling painted, but honestly,
what we did was enough.
I can look up in the shower and not see termite tracks ~ which is definitely less nasty.

I'm not done in there yet, but I'll show you what we've got, so far.
For those of you who haven't had the pleasure (I use that very loosely ;-) of seeing the bathroom in person
here's what we started with:


see the bottom of the tub? nasty!


The above picture shows all sorts of  nastiness.
Torn shower curtain. (actually cut. Somebody cut it, then, it tore. 6 yrs ago...)
We have more mildew (which has been attacked many times).
stuck on stuff from the former owner's plastic bathroom accessories
(which I removed in about 20 minutes using an essential oil I don't like the smell of 
(so I didn't mind 'wasting' it) and a scraper)
and last, but definitely not least, a big ole patch of termite damage.
When we painted before moving in (or maybe it was after?) 
we thought just painting over all the damage would be sufficient. 
It may have, if we hadn't actually killed all the termites, 
after they started chomping on my second favorite John Bell Jr print. 
Did you know that the termites that destroy your house also protect it from natural deterioration
by providing moisture? Kill the termites, things dry out very quickly.
Which causes all manner of additional troubles.
Back to the bathroom.
Below we have the worst of the nasty,
an open water heater closet
and major termite mess.


In addition to the mess that you can see,
there's a whole lot of nasty going on further down the wall
that I guess I didn't get a picture of.
There was no trim, the drywall was more torn up than what you see here
and the tile didn't go back to the studs, so there was always a little pile of dirt on the concrete.
There was also an inch or so gap between the drywall and the cabinet.
Nasty!!

Tyler filled all the holes with drywall mud. we opted not to bother with texturing the walls;
we were simply going for 'less' nasty, after all.
Then we painted with a custom mixed paint.
Meaning I mixed up 3 parts (or was it 2?) Sherwin Williams' Hazel (from my dresser
with 1 part Creamy White from the LEM table, which it appears I never posted a final photo of
and the french chairs I refinished and also never posted about.
Because I was afraid it might not be quite right, I added 2 splashes of pantry paint.
I should have only added one, because it's a tad brighter than I wanted.
Tyler fussed at me because he'd told me to buy whatever paint I wanted.
I told him I thought I could make exactly what I wanted...
At first I thought we were going to have to repaint,
but after a few days, I decided I was okay with it 
( it is less nasty - although a little more beach-houseish than I'd prefer) so I'm leaving it.

I'm not sure how I feel about the caulk strip we used around the top of the tub
but - it is less nasty...

Probably the biggest improvement, beyond covering up all the termite damage,
and replacing the tile at the base of the tub with wood trim,
was 'framing' the mirror, which was an after-thought. 
You'd think it would have been easy, but no, nothing in this house ever is.
I'll spare you the drama.
We, I think, will remember.

This is Tyler's favorite addition, besides the mirror trim

(mirror still needs to be caulked and corners repainted)
I made that love sign. All by myself! 
Well, I printed it as a photo at Sam's, but the rest of it,
was all me.
I"m even more tickled, though, with my family 'rules' poster


I liked the one from Alexander Creative's shop, but at 20x30, it was too big
(and $30? yikes!) so I made my own 16x20 print, changing it up a tiny bit. 
I printed it at Sam's, so it only cost me $7! Plus, it's even more perfect for us.
I coated the poster with 3 layers of floor finish, so it would be wipe-able and water resistant.
An added bonus ~ the brush strokes (I did horizontal and vertical) added a canvas-like texture to the print.
The frame is a piece of pre-primed trim board from Lowe's that was $2.38.
Brandon helped me make it ~ we got all sorts of twisted around figuring out which angle went which way.

You can see in that picture that we have an outlet!!! In our bathroom!!
Which means we don't have to plug into an extension cord at the top of the mirror.
And - it works with the light switch off! I could even use a night light if I wanted to .
Or a Scentsy thing. 
Oh, the possibilities.
Also - I'm sure you noticed the lack of holes, trim work, and curtain.
Here's what the lower portion looks like now, 
complete with the addition of the favorite musical instrument of many a small child.


Definitely much less nasty!
We outdid ourselves!

I fell in love with this print  (which I did buy from Alexander,
so I'm pretty sure he's okay with my copying his other poster
since it was the wrong size and all anyways) when I saw it a few months ago.
I have a little trouble with my mouth sometimes, so I pretty much needed it
to help me remember to speak life.
I ordered it right after deciding to embark on this little bathroom project
and it was pretty much the catalyst for the whole 'word art theme' that evolved.
Brandon and I worked together on this, too - we cut the board to size, then sanded and painted.
I spray-glued the print (which was thinner than I'd expected) and stuck it on.
Perfection!
But then I added the floor finish top coat to it, and it all crinkled up.
Which I guess is okay, because it goes with the texture of the background color, 
but I'd have been pretty bummed if the background was solid.

It's hanging over the door, so we can see it every time we leave the bathroom.
Jeremiah said he's just going to read it over and over while he's on the toilet.
Then he'll read the big one. Then go read this one again.
He spends a lot of time on the toilet, so this could be really beneficial ;-)



The shower curtain, which was inspired by this post,
which really sort of inspired the whole makeover in the first place - I think I'm scrapping. 
Not as in - using scraps, scrapping - no, I think I don't really like it.
And I really didn't like working on it.
And I actually kinda like the airy-ness of just the liner.
The impetus of the project - unused.
Weird how that worked out, huh?



I have a 'You are my sunshine' print to hang above the toilet,
and I want to make one of Micah 6:8 to hang between the medicine cabinet and the tub.
I may or may not add more 'words' as time goes by.

The really cool thing about this little project,
besides the fact that the bathroom is definitely much less nasty,
is,
I really love everything we've added, and will most likely use it all in the new house.


Tuesday, June 19, 2012

plans, good things, and longing fulfilled

Once upon a time, we drew up house plans for fun.
Then we drew up house plans for real.
And eventually,it wasn't fun anymore.
In fact,
it got to where I downright hated it.
Every time we'd work on house plans, I'd get on realtor.com and check craiglist for real estate.
We just couldn't get everything we wanted
- where we wanted it -
in few enough square feet
that we could afford to build.

Three weeks ago, Tyler sent me a text


I wasn't really convinced that that'd be the day we came up with the plan,
but,
not wanting to be a hindrance to God's plan or anything,
I got real serious about coming up with a plan.
I got my jar of water and went outside.
I sat in the shade of the tree we need to cut down because its ugly
and looked at where the house will be and proceeded - to come up empty.
I moved to the shade of a different tree so that I'd be looking at the 'house' from the west,
which is the direction I normally face when I sit at the computer and work on house plans.
(these things matter)
Still nothing.
And kids needed me, so I gave up on having a house by the time Tyler got home....

That night, after we put the kids to bed, Tyler and I sat down at the table.
He 'drove'
(that's what we call it when someone has control of the mouse. 
He has to use a mouse.
  I have advanced enough that I can build a house with the scroll thingies on my Lappy. 
not that I have pride issues or anything ;-)
Anyways.
He put the front of the house 
- which will face north -
at the bottom of the page.
This caused me to be very disoriented;
I always draw the plan as it sits on the property.
North, on my plans, is north as I sit at my desk. North is west on paper (or the computer).
I'm sure you all understand.
Every few minutes I was asking Tyler which direction was what.
He got a little frustrated with me, which helped me to figure out that north,
was south.

Long story short(er)....
as soon as he expanded the dining room (north on paper - south for real, on the property)
I felt like we might really had something to work with.
I was having a problem with the stairs, though.
The flow was all wrong.
To go upstairs when coming in from outside, 
the kids would practically have to go through the whole house.
Tyler had the staircase in the living room, because I always wanted the stairs to be a feature.
I miss our beautiful stairs.
Children Lexi needed tending to, so Tyler went off with a spankin spoon,
and I took over on the computer.
I moved the stairs to where they made more sense
(and where they would no longer be a feature)
He came out and saw what I'd done and said, "I couldn't do that." 
See ~ I had to be the one to give up the pretty staircase; he would never take that from me.

I started to get a little bit excited when we extended the master bath,
thinking  we really might have the plan...
Tyler went to bed and I stayed up a few more hours working on the upstairs.
~
The next day, Tyler called and shared something he'd read that morning from Proverbs 13
and said he really felt like he had permission from God to move forward.
Up 'til that point, there hadn't been peace.
~
I love turning onto our street.
I loved it the first time we drove down it.
I still love it.


That archway!

Here, have another look:


A day or so after we came up with the house plan, as I turned onto our road, and saw my arch,
I thought, 'I am so glad we've come up with a plan. 
I would miss this.'
Then I got to calculating; it had been right about 7 years ago when we found this property.
Ya'll see where I'm going with this?
Freedom. Rest. Ownership....

I'd been wondering what the date was in 2005 when we first laid eyes on this land.
It was a Sunday.
Josiah was a tiny baby; I was still recovering from a c-section.
We spent about a week deciding to make an offer.
Another 3 1/2 weeks to close, once we made the offer.
We closed on July 1st.

This morning, I pulled up an old calendar.
Go look, I'll wait for you.....

May 29th.
Did you notice the date on the text up there?
The day Tyler said, God willing ~ this would be the day we came up with the plan?
May 29th.
Seven years to the date.

Right now, 
it looks as though we have God's blessing to move forward with plans to build.

remember, south on the screen is north on the property.
 That little rectangle off to the left (east) is the LEM -  it'll be my craft room ~ I'm so excited!
The room at the upper right is the mudroom ~ so excited about that, too!
The storage room just below the mudroom is the pantry.
Ignore the freakishly large chairs in our bedroom and the sitting area in the dining room.
 Oh. that hall leading to my craft room? Library! With a sunny window seat!!

The north and south windows are actually dormers (no way to do that in the program that we have)
 so there will be little nooks at all those windows.
The little space labeled 'nook' is a secret room, accessed through the boys' closets.
of course, an architect (anybody know of a reasonably priced good one?) may need to change things up a bit...



yes!!!

Finally!

Ya'll just don't know how long I have hovered
close
to the twenty-five pound mark,
but never quite hitting it.
Today,
finally,
I hit it!
Twenty-five pounds lost!
Still a kazillion to go,
but I somehow have had it in my head that if I could just hit 25,
the next twenty five would be easier (and quicker).
Stupid, I know,
but I'm happy all the same.
I should celebrate!
With like, some chia seeds or something.


completely unrelated, but notable - we had burgers on buns Sunday, on top of having had BLT's on real bread 
Saturday (granted, I had an open-faced sandwich and only 1/2 a bun, but still it was wheat 2 days in a row) 
and I had a headache the entire day yesterday (and maybe even Sunday evening; can't remember) 
that 20 glasses of water didn't even touch(usually I can get rid of a headache by simply drinking more water...) 


Monday, June 18, 2012

just how I imagined


We'd always planned on our grown kids coming back home
on Sunday afternoons.
It just seemed right.
As they had kids, and their kids grew,
it would just be 'how it was' ~ you go to Mimi and Pop's house on Sundays.

It hasn't really worked out that way
(what that we do does work out like we'd planned? ;-)
and we didn't have all of our kids home yesterday
but TJ came down 
and Tony and Kacy were here 
and of course, the rest of the crew....
They played games
while I cooked.
Watching them 
and listening to all their racket,
I smiled.
It was (almost) just like I'd always imagined our Sunday afternoons/evenings would be.


Friday, June 15, 2012

our egg lady

Several months ago, someone posted on  the homeschool email loop 
about a lady in town selling eggs from pastured hens.
I replied to the email asking for the gal's contact info, 
then promptly got in touch with Gayle.
Our Egg Lady.

Gayle lives about 10 minutes east of us.
When she goes to town, she drives right past our road, so most weeks, 
she drives the extra 4/10 mile down 46th street and delivers her farm fresh eggs
(and whatever garden goodies she has for us)
right to our door!
Then she stays and visits with us for a little while.
She's invited the kids and I our to their farm a couple of times, so we can play with her animals
hunt for eggs
and feed the animals that help feed us.
We've grown to love her,
and I think the feeling is mutual:
One day, Lexi was laying down for a nap when she arrived.
When she peeked out the window and saw Miss Gayle was here, she got up and ran outside.
Gayle's eyes lit right up when she spotted Lex' on the porch.
~
When we bought this place all I wanted to do was raise as much food of our own
as we possibly could.
It's no secret we haven't been overly successful in that.
I've come to realize what a blessing it is,
that in the past few years of illness, I didn't have to take care of animals,
(or even a garden - last year)
on top of caring for my family.

I would still like,
someday,
to be able to raise a good portion of our food on this beautiful piece of land we call home.
But for now, I am so so grateful to be able to purchase, at reasonable prices,
food grown just the way I'd like to grow it.
To gain a friend in the process is sweet icing on the cake.

Thursday, June 14, 2012

more needle and thREADs


I hand-quilted the final red pinwheel last week and set the quilt aside.
I need to machine quilt the outer border, but I'm still mulling over how, exactly.
I've also somehow managed to lose my thread.
Which makes proceeding more than a little difficult.
No worries though;
my latest project is sucking up all my sewing time.

Like the memory game ~ I love knowing which project every single scrap is from ~ I bet you recognize a lot of them :-)

This is the most tedious thing I've ever sewn, I think ~ all that starting and stopping and turning!
I could've already sewn a whole quilt top 
in the time I've spent on this silly shower curtain for the bathroom operation,
and I'm not even half done yet!
Some friends have joked that my scraps will get bigger and bigger as I move down.
The pieces haven't gotten bigger yet, but you'll notice my spaces have...

At first, I pinned my fabric scraps on my background fabric (a thrifted sheet).
but I ended up using my trusty basting glue 'cause I was losing pins (and getting poked!) left and right.

It gets all tangled up very quickly!

Amazingly, I've also managed quite a bit of reading this week.
(A trip to the library helps a lot :-)
Interestingly, and quite by accident,
all four books that I read, the Book Thief, Summer at Tiffany, Song for Summer,
and Jacob Have I Loved were set during WWII.
My favorite of the four was the Book Thief, but it did take me awhile to get into it.
I'm still trying to decide if I should have Brandon read it or not;
he hates books that have sad parts in them,
and it's just kinda weird and takes some getting used to, that the narrator is Death.
Still, it was a pretty good book...
~
If you're interested in what others are sewing and reading these days, visit Elizabeth's

needle and thREAD


Tuesday, June 12, 2012

it's official




Gramma finally gets her red-headed granddaughter!


And I get the daughter in law I've always dreamed of having.

Oh. And Ton' gets the girl of his dreams, too :-)


Monday, June 11, 2012

mini thanks


Just a few days after arriving home from our vacation,
I bought a gift card for my friend,
as a thank-you for taking care of all the cats,
watering my porch plants, and grabbing the mail while we were gone.
And then,
it sat.
I am so lame.
Then I thought, I'll mail it to her ~ that'd be kinda punny.
You know - she'd get mail, thanking her for getting my mail...
But I am no better at putting things in the mail
than I am at driving over to people's houses, and still it sat.
Yesterday, she asked if she could come over and buy some popcorn off me;
she knew we'd bought a 50# bag at Sam's recently.
Yay - I can finally give her the gift card, I thought.
But, it looked a little lame, sitting there in its cardstock holder.
It was, after all, now weeks since she'd looked after things for me.


So, I decided I needed to make a mini zip bag, to put it in.
I would use pink scraps and do an improv pieced front.
That'd be cute ~ she'd like that.
Then I realized,
I don't actually have many pink scraps; I haven't made a pink quilt yet.
What to use, then, that would properly convey my gratitude?


Obviously, there was only one answer ~ a piece of my beloved California Dreamin'.
Made up into a little bag, complete with little boxed corners.
Perfect for a wrapping a gift card 'thank-you'. 


She told me multiple times that the gift card was too much,
so
I did what any good friend would do.
I told her she could take me out.

Thursday, June 7, 2012

getting there

A month or so ago, I was dreading my appointment with Maggie.
I was doing especially poorly
and the first thing she always says is, "How ya doin?"
And I was going to have to be all whiny
and I hate whiny.
But, when you're going for help, 
it doesn't do much good to go in and plaster a smile on and say you're fine.
Not that I'm all that great at plastering smiles on anyways...
I told her that it must suck to be her,
always seeing people at their worst.
She said it was her calling so it wasn't too bad.
I said that one of these days, when someone asks me how I'm doing,
I'd love to be able to say, "Great!"

This afternoon, when Maggie asked how I was doing,
I cocked my head to the side, thought a second
 and said,
"You know what? I'm doing pretty good."


Wednesday, June 6, 2012

quilting expectations

Sometimes, when I'm working on a quilt, I just feel so grateful.
~
Several years ago,
the women's ministry at our church was doing a series on 'expectations'.
They had asked me to do a talk on the expectations we have of ourselves.
I spent hours and hours in the Word, 
trying to determine what expectations God expects us to
have for ourselves.
I didn't want to just share my own thoughts on the matter.
Interestingly, they never asked me to speak again.
I will admit it was the the most difficult and humbling talk I've ever given!
Anyways.
I began with an attention grabber.
I described in detail the quilts I'd made for my children.
Quilts I had designed myself, full of all the things they loved.
Beautiful quilts that told the story of their lives.
And then I mildly annoyed the ladies when I said,
"I should have brought them to show you tonight. 
Only. 
They aren't exactly finished yet.
Actually - They aren't even started.     I haven't even bought the fabric yet."

Expectations ~ we sure  have a lot of them for ourselves, huh?!
~

I'm not making the gloriously detailed quilts of my dreams,
but I am making quilts.
And for that, I am grateful.

one kicking guy, three ways



It's summer
(duh)
and that means the boys don't have to wear their uniform tops to TKD class.


They can wear any t-shirt, but they really are supposed to wear the color of their belt.
(we didn't know that last summer...)


Being that they are my children, they wanted to snazzy their shirts up a bit.
Also,
being that they are my children, they didn't want their shirts to all be the same.


Fortunately, though, they did all want the same size kicking guy,
so I only had to cut it out once :-)
Well, once after my mess-up cutting outs...

I know you can't see the design ~ but where did my boy go? 

We used the freezer paper method, which is all over blog-land,
but Delia happened to post about it just yesterday, so I'll link to hers.
Plus, I like Delia, she seems awfully sweet, she's pretty, she's quite talented,
and she has a baby girl with the cutest little chin.
The only thing I did differently was print the design directly onto the freezer paper
by taping a square of freezer paper to the top left corner of regular copy paper
before running it through the printer.

Look how high this kid can kick!! Crazy!
So.
There you have it.
One kicking guy


three ways.


Tuesday, June 5, 2012

now. about that anniversary...


Where should we go??
What should we do?
(I mean - besides the obvious ;-)

We'd always thought our 25th would be a big trip - Hawaii, Bora Bora
(okay - maybe not Bora Bora)
but we aren't really comfortable leaving the kids for a whole week yet.
Or putting anybody else through having the kids for a whole week. 
So maybe we'll do Hawaii on our 30th anniversary.

Anyways,
now we're trying to figure out where to go.
In August.
Blazing hot August.
Not too terribly far from home.
(maybe 5 hours or so max)

Whadya think??

Monday, June 4, 2012

small change


Several years ago,
we started saving change for our 25th anniversary.
Seeing that it's just a tad over 2 months away
and childcare is finally lined up,
I figured today would be a good day to count the coins.
We all made ridiculously low guesses as to how much money there was .
I can't be exactly sure how much we saved,
 (it turns out that some of our dollar stacks of quarters were made of 5 coins, instead of 4)
and we didn't count the pennies (we're guessing maybe about $20 worth?)
but the silver monies, 43 pounds of dimes, nickles and quarters,
came to almost $500!!

It just goes to show you that small change can make a big difference.


Sunday, June 3, 2012

super saturday


We are having the nicest weekend!
Matt and Marin came down
and are spoiling and lovin' on my kids
and that just makes me happy   : D
It is so nice to have help filling their little tanks!


Friday, June 1, 2012

happy national donut day


Having just purchased Mrs. Muddle's Holidays,
once I found out it was National Donut Day,
I couldn't really let the day slip by unnoticed, could I?
So I grabbed the water bottles and some milk
(and a gallon of frozen milk to keep it all cold)
and threw 'em in a cooler bag.


Stopped in at the Dollar General to get something a bit more substantial than just donuts
and left the store with a pkg of salami and American cheese
(I do believe this is the first time several of my children had that particular delicacy)
and headed to Paul's Bakery.
The selection there was so dismal, that we had to go to FSM.
Figured we may as well try out the new shop.


After loading up on sugary treats
(two to a bag for each person)
we made a beeline for the park and spread out our picnic sheet.
While we lunched,
we watched the ducks.




The longer we were there, the braver the geese and ducks got.



They just wanted to celebrate with us, that's all... 

A couple of planes flew overhead so closely that we could see the propellers spin!


After eating, the kids did a little playing 




under their big bub's watchful eyes


then it was home again, home again jiggity jig.

Throw caution to the wind, chuck your to-do list (you'll never get everything finished anyways)
 and head out to your nearest (stocked) donut shop
and have a happy National Donut Day!