Monday, March 16, 2020

Life today . . .goes on as planned

Corona-virus . . . .it's everywhere. Television is full, Facebook is full, talk is non-stop, store shelves are bare.

Did I go buy a truck load of toilet paper, clorox wipes?  NO!!  Why?
We are always prepared. Always have been.

I did make some Elderberry syrup. Something we will take a spoonful on a daily basis.

My hutch is and has always been stocked with dried beans, noodles, soup mixes, cornmeal, hot chocolate mix, dried cranberries, dates, and raisins.

The pantry has bags of sugar, cake mixes, cereals, peanut butters, canned fruits, ketchup, flour, and coffees (I buy it in bulk from Community coffee with 30% sales).

The pantry with my canned goods, has canned beans, tomatoes, kraut, jellies, peaches, apple sauces, green beans and condiments.

Of course it wasn't a good garden season last year, so the supply isn't what I'd like for it to be. But you know we have seeds and spring is almost here.  The tomatoes plants have been started from seeds and are sprouting.

We have plenty of spices, all purchased in bulk from the Mennonite store. Thank you Weavers market, I believe they do on line sales too. 

Our small freezer is packed full. There's beef, deer, pork, fish, and when that runs out, the blacksmith can go fishing in the lake behind the house, or the river in walking distance. There's always squirrel hunting too.

So we continue life as usual.

Last week we attended the funeral of a dear cousin Bob. Rita held his celebration of life at the Missouri Botanical Gardens in the Sphinx building. Rita has  always said, it's all about the presentation. She hit the nail on the head. It was beautiful. 

I painted a small barn quilt. I've decided painting isn't my thing. I'd rather be sewing quilt blocks. Hopefully this will be my last. 

We sure miss our sweet Bentley. Yesterday would have been his 15th birthday.

I'll close with this.  If you know me you know I very much dislike frogs. However when the blacksmith found this in the Amazon return store, I couldn't resist buying it. 

Wednesday, February 12, 2020

A birthday gift comes from far away!

Yesterday I received this sweet package from Cathy, an old friend in Australia. 

We met I’m think about 20 years ago on an old sewing forum. If I remember correctly, she was looking for some fabric. I sent her some and the rest is history.

We have exchanged many gifts over the years. Her sewing and machine skills are extraordinary! 

We don’t communicate as much as we use to but several weeks ago I reached out to ask if she was in danger of the fires.

We talked via email. She was safe! She asked if we still lived at the same address. 

Then yesterday this arrived

A covered journal.

She calls this a mug mat. Now who wants to take a chance getting it stained! The embroidery work is just a piece of art.

My birthday card and a crochet face cloth.

Look at the zipper pull on this pouch! Isn’t it adorable? As if the fabric wasn’t pretty enough, she machined embroidered a heart on it. 

A sweet cosmetic bag. Who thinks of adding lace to a zipper? Of course another sweet zipper pull.

Thank you Cathy, here’s to many more years of sewing and quilting friendships.

God is good.

Saturday, February 8, 2020

I think I over did it on my birthday. . . .

Because that evening  the flu came to visit.

First of all I have two reasons to celebrate, it’s  not only my birthday,  but the cancer was removed on my birthday last year. Thank you God.

It was a fun day, I made a quick trip to town for groceries and stopped at Yellow Moon Antique shop.

Found this 3 lb. Old Judge coffee jar, with it’s original lid!  The white milk glass candy dish, I want to turn it into pin pin cushion. The lace around it will hold scissors! 

My bff Margie knows me well. She sent this cute embroidery and quilt piecing project to me. I’ve already started it. She also sent other things, including a chocolate candy bar that was gone way before this picture was taken. 

My bff, Diane knows I mostly  wear hoop earrings. She gave these to me. She recycled the box that I gave to her on her birthday a couple of weeks ago. Does it look familiar bff Tami?

My kids gave me some much needed storage bowl lids. Who knew there were replacements? Of course my DIL, aka Ms. amazon shopper did. They also gave me a gift card to a fairly new restaurant in town, Big Whiskey that we need to try out. 

Bff Tami gave some hand made cards to me that her daughter Shelby makes. The only problem, every card they give to me, I want to frame!

I got other adorable cards too, including a pop up one.

A blacksmith friend, Robert gave a cross to me last Saturday. It’s not really a birthday present, but I’ll count it anyway!

Before bed I noticed my orchid was ready to bloom. This morning it was smiling brightly. I bought  this at Aldi’s last May. 

For my birthday dinner we went to Tres Agaves, a new restaurant about 5 miles from our house. My go to meal is usually Taco al Pastor. Theirs did not disappoint. It’s all about the presentation, right Rita M.?

Unfortunately we ran into friends at the restaurant, who so kindly told them it was my birthday.

Before I go, I need to thank all my facebook friends who sent me messages, over 350! You guys are great.

Another year is in the books. I feel so blessed to be here.

God is good.

Wednesday, February 5, 2020

Same quilt, just different. . .

Three or four years ago I made Connor a super hero quilt. His whole room is decorated in super heroes. Including a print by my friend Pattie's husband, Mark Bagley. Mark is a comic artist for Marvel comics. So Connor  has a pretty cool room.

This was the first quilt I made for Connor.

Fast forward to January of this year and Connor had his tonsils and adenoids removed. He had a set back, okay 2 set backs, and in the process, his quilt was ruined. I'll spare you the details. 

Since his room was so full of the super heroes it only made sense to stick with the theme.

So I went back to Hobby Lobby and they still had the same fabric. I found a panel with the Super Heroes on it and ordered it from EBay. 

Here is one side.

This is the other side. Call me crazy but I tried  (and accomplished) my first reversible quilt!!

I would flip the quilt from front to back depending on the pattern when I machine quilted it. I did the quilting on a 1952 (that was such a great year) Singer 15-91 machine. My late friend Phil Cox, made a quilt foot for the vintage machine. The foot raises and lowers as you sew. This makes it so easy to move your fabric. I use gripper gloves to move the fabric. Most of the time I used a stippling pattern. 

It goes in the mail tomorrow.

To the give the little brother some recognition . . .here he is playing the part of a 100 year old man on the 100th day of school.

We got the new table the blacksmith made all set up with machines. I love it in the living room. Originally it was going in a spare bedroom. However, it's just too pretty to put out of sight.

It pretty easy to entertain old folks like us. These are our friends Terry and Debby after we had shopped til we almost dropped at the Amazon return store. We enjoyed craft beers and margaritas before our dinner at Bee's Knee's Brewery in Versailles, Missouri.  For the record Debby had a blueberry infused margarita, and I had a raspberry infused margarita. The blacksmith's favorite beer was Coffee Stout.

You never know what you will find at the Amazon store. This was on $2 day, everything was $2.

My new Totes rain jacket, so lightweight! $2

Almost 100 tea lights, after all we have a big celebration coming up in May. These will add to the table decorations. $2

Our Florida boys love sharks, We couldn't resist these. $2

This was so funny!  It's to drain your silverware, the water comes out the elephant's trunk. $2

I've always wanted a pie weight. $2

A super hero costume. $2

Hundreds of gold balloons. Did I tell you it was $2 day? Did  I mention a special celebration coming up in May? A golden celebration.

Back home the next day, the blacksmith made a new colonial candle holder. It was a practice run for an up coming class he is teaching in May at the state blacksmith conference. 

I got this in the mail yesterday, it's our Florida family!

God is good, tomorrow I have a lot to celebrate!  A birthday and a year since my cancer surgery.

Sunday, January 19, 2020

Yes, I still quilt

I sew almost everyday, or quilt, or do something with my hands. I don't like idle hands.

I made this, over sized baby quilt for my sister in law to give as a gift to baby Archie, who was born premature. It turned out too big.  I found the pattern as a picture on pinterest.  I could tell it was made up of all squares. Silly me didn't calculate the final size. But it is, what it is.  He will probably be able to use it on a twin bed when he gets older. 

I pieced this quilt for our Casita, 16 ft fiberglass camper. When the  hubby remodeled the Casita, he picked out new fabric for curtains and I did a matching quilt. 

My friend Cindy of Cindy's Quilting did the machine quilting for me. I think she did a wonderful job picking out a quilting pattern to match the southwest theme. 

She used a cotton and polyester batting which I really like. I like a heavy quilt and not a lot of fluff! 

The center panel was donated to the quilting ladies at church. I took the panel and added borders. We then hand quilted it. I did the binding. It will be auctioned at the August picnic!

This book is copyrighted 2006 so sometime around then I purchased it. I started on the 24 blocks, and got bored. Several times I'd pull it out, sew a little and tuck it back away. Last January it was a project I was going to finish come hell or high water. 

It's twin bed size. I hand quilted it just before Christmas. I love Sun bonnet Sue and Overall Sam!

We have tried to find a sewing machine base for a long time. Our blacksmith friend Mike Gentzsch gave us this one, this past July.

Last week, my blacksmith cleaned the frame up, and extended it about 12 inches. I worked on the gold leafing. 

The blacksmith added a live edge red elm board that we purchased from a Mennonite man at Jacob's Cave Flea market. We decided a shiny polyurethane finish would match the glossy black paint. It is beautiful. I asked for it to be made to use in a spare bedroom for displaying sewing machines.

However when it was finished we both decided it was just to pretty to hide upstairs. So it will reside in our living room. After curing a few days I will add the machines. Of course not all 20, 21, or whatever the count is will fit!

I am currently working on hand quilting a Christmas quilt I put together last year. It's going pretty good.  More on that later.

God is Good  

Thursday, December 26, 2019

The true meaning of Christmas

December 20th, 2018 . . . . Lizzie (who was 9 years old at the time )and I  were driving into town, when she said, "I can't wait till I'm old enough to get a debit card."  Why I asked?  She said, "So I can buy my mom and dad some Christmas presents."

A few weeks later I was diagnosed with breast cancer. The blacksmith and I talked about what we would be facing. Knowing I might need some extra help, I told him what Lizzie had said. We decided to offer her a deal.  If she would help me/us we would pay her a small amount.   I set up a plan to pay for things like emptying the dishwasher, cooking, dusting, taking drinks to grandpa in the shop, vacuuming the vehicles, staying off Youtube, sewing, setting the table, and other things. 

She knew how to set up a spread sheet on the computer. Grandpa helped her with the column totals. 

She was a worker, always asking what she could do. This was a secret between her and us. No one else knew. 

In the summer time she asked if she could make something for her brothers for Christmas. She explained what she wanted to make and she looked through my bins of fabric. She found Cardinal fabric for Brady and Chiefs for Alex. She cut out 3 pockets for each banner in coordinating  fabric. I helped her with the loops on top. She made the banners to hold their pocket change, billfolds, and cell phones. These she sewed all on a hand crank Singer 1931 Singer sewing machine.  December 23, she FORGED the 4 hooks to hang them on the wall with!!!

Fast forward to December 20th 2019, She counted  her money and had collected over $70. (She knows exactly how much!!)  I took her to Walmart where she had a list of things she wanted. In a few quick hours we visited 2 Walmarts, Menards, Lowes, Westlakes and Dollar General.  

4 days until Christmas and she was so excited!!!!!  She printed off the 3 page spread sheet to have to show her parents. 

Here she is posing with all her gifts, which she intentionally did not put a name on. She knew which color of ribbon went to who.

After all the family gifts were opened, she said well there are still presents under the tree . . . . 
She then said they were from her and we told how they came about. (I might have been in tears)

Mom opening the picture frame that Lizzie explained was a family item, as it has a family verse on it. 

Mom and Dad I think were stunned.

Here is what she bought for Mom and Dad. I let her do all the shopping, including the sarcasm t-shirt, she knows her daddy well!

She's telling him be careful, don't cut too deep.

Brady's wall hanging

Alex's wall hanging.

To say we are proud of her is an understatement. It's not the fact that she helped us, it's how caring and giving she is.  Her parents have done a beautiful job raising her and her brothers. 

God is good.