Saturday, December 26, 2009
Saturday, December 19, 2009
I've been a busy little elf sewing, embroidering, wrapping, and smiling. It is so much fun to make things for loved ones at Christmas. I wanted so badly to make little doll quilts with a book theme for the grand daughters this year. (This idea probably came after reading this post on Kleios Belly . She does really great embroidery, and has wonderful ideas posted on her blog, if you haven't read it, you should!) I started with vague ideas, searched the net, found some really inspiring ideas, and got to work. One of my grand- daughter's favorite story is The Little Red Hen. My original idea was to make a quilt and give the book that goes along with the story, but since this particular little girl loves this story so much, I just had to make her a Little Red Hen quilt, even if she already has the book. I'll just give her a different book.
The other stories all had fabric to match, like Little Red Riding Hood fabric for the Little Red Riding Hood quilt, etc., but I scoured fabric sites and came up short on The Little Red Hen. However, I found this amazing quilt and story on a blog ironically called The Little Red Hen . It is a beautiful blog with gorgeous photography, beautiful quilts and needlework, and just the idea I needed for my quilt! I wrote Lynn and asked if she would mind if I copied the pattern. She graciously consented telling me her sister had gotten the pattern from an old children's book . You really must go over and look it, for my work doesn't do the pattern justice! I'm very much a beginner as you can tell from the quilts.
I didn't figure my oldest grandson would want a doll quilt so I made him a Thomas the Train apron. He adores Thomas, and I found a beautiful book, The Goodnight Train, to go along with it.
This has been so much fun! I have another apron in the works, and want to do a Pokey Little Puppy quilt as well.
Now to start wrapping and cooking!
Sunday, December 13, 2009
So here's the scoop, I went over to my daughter's to take a photo for their Christmas card. She had the scene set up so beautifully with a fire in the fireplace, the tree decorated, everyone dressed to a T, each girl's hair fixed just so, Sweet Cheeks still had a rash from an allergy to fruit, but every card's gotta tell a story, right? With four kids, it was a major job to get this all set up. In all honesty she had been working up to this moment all day. I arrived on time and started snapping away. You all know the unprofessional quality of my photos, but my philosophy is this: take a ca-zillion pictures and one has to come out right. I left the flash off, hoping to capture the true ambiance of the fire and the tree. A warm overall feeling was what I was going for, and the glow was there, believe me. The only problem was, by not using the flash the shutter was open too long and every slight movement was caught. The results were at least one fuzzy person per shot, add to that the fact that you can NEVER get four children and two adults looking favorably at the camera at one time, especially without one of them moving. I have tons of photos to back up this theory, and here are just a few of the shots to prove it. The last two were taken with the flash, but as you can tell by this time some were beginning to become uncooperative. To see just how funny these really are you need to click on each one to enlarge it. Scooter, in the polka dots has some wicked looking eyes in one of them.
By the way, there was a card made and it features none of the above photos, but it wasn't exactly perfect either. If I recall correctly one of these precious dears has a finger up her nose.
Saturday, December 12, 2009
My son and his gorgeous wife were married last April. I shared a few pictures from the photographer's blog back then. Their wedding has just been featured on a wedding blog called Inspired By This . I thought I would just share the link with you, not that I'm a proud parent or anything (she says smiling sheepishly.)
It was a wonderful day and they are such a sweet couple. The photographer did an amazing job as you can see by the photos. Check out the blog if you have time. If not here's a little sneak peek!
This by the way, is the same sweet son who brought me fresh hot banana nut pancakes to the house for breakfast this morning, and they were yummy!!!
Friday, December 11, 2009
It is so much fun during the hustle and bustle of life, especially this time of year, to slow down and just spend time out of doors with family. Simple, good times together, making memories and enjoying each other.
Monday, November 30, 2009
Friday, November 27, 2009
Yeah, I'm a little late with my Thanksgiving post. It has not been a typical holiday for us. My dad has been in and out of the hospital for the last month and a half. I won't go into all of the details, but if you are a believer please pray for him. We usually celebrate Thanksgiving at my parent's house. It is my favorite holiday not a lot of hype and commercialism, instead just food, family, thankfulness and football.
This year we really missed Mom and Dad being with us at the table. It was very strange without them there, but we truly are thankful that while they weren't there at the table, they are still with us, and God willing will be back home soon!
This gave my daughter her first chance to host the holiday at her house, and she did an excellent job! Everything was beautiful, and the food was so good I am still full Friday evening as I type this.
I took pictures, really I did, but for some reason every one of them, except for a very small handful, are fuzzy due to someone moving (and possibly the photographer, but we won't mention that.) I know that there is some sort of stop motion feature on the camera, but I still haven't figured that out, so I guess you'll have to settle for these few pictures that did come out clearly, and hope somehow I get a steadier hand or object to photograph. And, yes we had a ton of other stuff to eat beside pie, these are just the best pictures.
Speaking of pie, I had to throw this little Cutie Pie in the mix too!
Friday, November 20, 2009
Today was International Overall Day. I'm sad to say I'm the only one I saw in overalls today. Overalls were the first thing my Poppy bought for each of my four brothers when they were born, and every memory I have of him he was wearing a pair, mostly the carpenter style. When he died they buried him in a suit, and it just didn't feel right to me. I asked Mimi if I could have a pair of his, and she gave them to me. I still have them. My kids were toddlers during the time Osh Kosh overalls were in style, and most of my pictures of them are in different colors of overalls. With all of these emotional ties to this form of britches I simply had to don a pair today, even if I seemed a little out of step with trends and the times.
Thursday, November 19, 2009
Scooter spent the night last night. She's such a cutie, and quite funny. She was so excited about spending the night as soon as she got here she wanted to go to bed. I think she must have thought that if she didn't go to bed someone would come and get her to go home. I managed to keep her up to 7:45, but she kept saying she was ready for bed so I finally consented thinking she'd lay down for a little while and get back up, but she didn't, she went right to sleep. Of course she was up very early bright-eyed and ready for the day.
Her breakfast request was macaroni and cheese, which I happened to have left over in the fridge so that was easy! We played inside and out, and ended our time together with a little baking project. She helped me make a pineapple upside down cake. I love baking with grandkids!
Tuesday, November 17, 2009
Life has been keeping me busy lately, and I really haven't had much time to post, plus I hate posting without pictures, and for some reason I just haven't been taking many lately. Now that it is getting closer to Christmas I'm getting my hands busy and hopefully will have some pictures soon of these little projects.
Monday, November 9, 2009
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Friday, November 6, 2009
Autumn always makes me feel nostalgic. I don't know why. Memories seem to flood my mind as my favorite time of year rolls around. My mind is simply full of beautiful memories. I feel guilty sometimes because I am so blessed when so many are hurting. As Thanksgiving approaches, which by the way is my favorite holiday, I am truly filled with gratitude already. You see, I fall too many times into the habit of complaining, which is a sorry waste of time. I whine when the light doesn't turn green fast enough, or when I come home to a mess I didn't make, trivial stuff.
So instead of wallowing in negativity over miniscule mishaps
or disappointments, I'm going to enjoy my sweet memories. I'm going to make a really short list, compared to the fullness of my heart, and maybe some of my divulging will trigger some of your fond memories too. Here goes:
-The supper table - noisy, joyful sharing, often talking over one another, and acting out various scenes from our day
-walks together as a family down a dirt road in the evening
-sliding down steep hills, covered in dry grass in the fall on big cardboard appliance boxes
-evening devotions and some of the funny things my little brothers prayed for
-singing in the car on trips with the windows rolled down
-singing off key on the front porch while my dad played the guitar
-yard and garden work, which I hated at the time, but now look back on fondly
-chasing fireflies at dusk in the summer
-decorating the Christmas tree and singing carols
-the wonderful spur of the moment snacks my mom would make like caramel pop corn or chocolate oatmeal cookies
-visits from friends and relatives
-trips to my grandparents
-running down the cold hall in the morning and jumping in my parent's bed and listening to them tell me stories
Okay, I did say short list so I'll stop there for now. Man, I didn't even get past early childhood. I guess that's enough reminiscing for one night, but when you get started down memory lane it's kinda hard to stop. If I lose my short term memory as I get older, at least I'll have some pleasant things to dwell on, and tell over and over again.
Thursday, November 5, 2009
It was a gorgeous day here! The girls came over for a visit, and we spend a great deal of time outside. We played hide-n-seek, and Angel Eyes informed me that I might need to hide behind the fat trees so she wouldn't be able to see me. Okay, we'll just let that comment stand on it's own. She meant no malice, just giving me pointers before we started the game. I laughed out loud, and so far haven't cried in private. The truth does smart a little though!
We walked through the "forest" (a few little pines to the side of the house) in search of animals. All we found were several crawdad houses. I wish I knew
more about them, because the girls were really curious.
After that was craft time, we started out trying our hand at pine cone turkeys, and quickly moved on to other animals. Later they had a blast just cutting up the paper and trying to make something out of the shape they had cut. It was kind of like trying to find a picture in the clouds. It occupied them for the longest while.
Sweet Cheeks really wanted to use those scissors and she tried very hard, but she just couldn't get it to work for her
so she moved on to bubbles, which she had a little difficulty with too,
so she made her own.
Then a picnic was in order, not a true picnic in the grass, but a halfway picnic on the porch.
Monday, November 2, 2009
I have a young friend who told me recently that she would love to learn to hang out clothes on a clothes line. I said, "oh, there is nothing to it, you just put the clothes on the line with the clothes pins and that's about it." I was sharing this with my mom and she quickly corrected me. "Mindy, there really is a proper way to hang out clothes." Okay, so I've never truly had to depend on a clothes line for a long period of time, and while I have begged my husband for one ever since we moved here, (18 years ago,) he won't put one up because he doesn't want to mow around it. There was a short time when we were newly weds that I had a clothes line, and I loved it! I loved sleeping on sheets that had been hung on the line.
Anyway, the next time I saw my mom she had whipped up my friend a clothespin apron and one for my daughter as well, and wrote up a few directions to go with it.
I thought I could find a picture of my mom with a clothes line in the background, but I couldn't. I still believe there is one somewhere at her house, and if I find it I will post it later. In the meanwhile, here is one of our family in the early years. I'm the little tyke in the middle, this was before the addition of my four brothers.
Here is what she wrote:
THE CLOTHES LINE
My early days of marriage, and also when our children were young, the clothes line was one of my favorite places of service to my family. So when a young married lady told my daughter that she wanted to learn to hang out clothes, my daughter's reply was you don't have to learn to hang out clothes, you just do it. I began to think about what she said, and realized that to hang out clothes correctly you do need to follow some guidelines. Mindy, my daughter, has always had a dryer and I had one for most of the years she would have helped me with the laundry.
You need a good sturdy line to hang clothes on, a clothes pin apron filled with clothes pins and a clothes basket to take clothes to the line and back inside when they dry.
It is important to get up early and wash so the cloths will have the full day to dry. In my early married days we had a ringer type washer and you used the same water to wash all of the clothes. You had two tubs against the washer so you could ring the clothes and they would fall into the first rinse water. The second was placed next to the washer and tub. The old fashioned ringer could be turned to work from tub to tub. When you ringed the last rinse water out you caught the cloths in a basket. That basket worked well for taking the clothes to the clothes line.
There was order to the washing, the first load was white clothes, the second light colors, and finally the heavy dirty work clothes. Whites first because you didn't want them to get dingy from the water from the other loads.
All clothes should be hung inside out, this keeps them from fading as bad, and the sun would draw the stains in the white clothes to the inside. Give each article a good firm shake to help the wrinkles to fall out. The clothes should be hung in order, handkerchiefs, tee shirts, under shorts, pants, bras, slips and so on. Tee shirts are to be hung by the bottom hem, one clothes pin on each corner. Clothes can be hung using the same pin to hold the corners that touch. Under shorts and panties should be hung by the top placing the pins over the elastic. Never stretch the elastic. Shirts and blouses are hung by the bottom balancing the pins on the sideseams. Pants should be hung by the bottom of the legs.
I always wash my sheets and pillow cases with the towels if the towels don't fade. With the sheets I usually put the corners together hanging them with the long side going with the wire, using a pin at each corner and one in the middle. I hang the pillow cases by the inside corners. The towels I hang by the corners on the small side. I like clothes of one kind hung together it makes them look more orderly, also sorting clothes helps when you put them away.
I always carried my clothes basket to the line when the clothes were dry and folded them as I took them off the line. If they have been sorted it is easy to take the basket to each room and put the things that don't need ironing away.
It is very rewarding to smell the fresh air on your clothes when you bring them in. It is worth the extra effort to hang them out.
Watch for rain clouds and remember to get them in before the dew in the evening dampens them.
While you hang out clothes is a good time to think or do what I always did, sing. I love to sing but don't have a good voice, so the clothes line was a good place to sing where no one heard me.
I am not sure how much it saves on the electric bill not to use the dryer, but every little bit we save helps.
Happy wash day to everyone!
Friday, October 30, 2009
While spending time at my parent's house I was looking for a picture for something I want to post later. I never found the picture I was looking for, but I came across this picture of my mom climbing a tree. It is a very blurry picture, or maybe the scanning made it blurry, but after posting about teaching the girls how to climb trees I just hand to include this. Mom is the one on the left.
Thursday, October 22, 2009
There was an old woman who lived in a shoe............
I am not that woman! First of all, my entire body would never fit into a shoe no matter the size, much less my entire family, and I didn't know what to do before I started having children, so I certainly can't blame them! I am surrounded by children, always have been, and even when I don't know what to do I consider them a blessing. My life has been enriched greatly by all of the children in my life. I hope that in some way I have enriched theirs as well. I am feeling rich today, rich in the relationships of my life. Thanks for indulging me in my sentimentality.
Changing gears here, I found an amazing site this morning I want to share with you. I'm linking you to one page of the site, but browse around and check out the various articles, there is a lot of great stuff there! I haven't read it all yet, but am trying to let my brain marinate in what I have read so maybe the flavor will stick. I particularly relate to The Mild Manifesto, but I could never have put how I felt into words.
Okay, now the commercial: My mom has been telling me what a prevention using a saline solution every day is for a long time. On a recent trip to the Dr. with one of my grandchildren the Dr. suggested saline drops to help her get over her cold more quickly. I told him that I used Simply Saline everyday, and he said that if everyone did this 85% of his patients, wouldn't need his services. I am in no way affiliated with this product or company, but I thought with all of the sickness going around this might be a tip some of you would appreciate.