Saturday, August 31, 2013

Up a creek without a paddle

The morning started out great. Lizzie was so excited to take a boat ride on the Osage and play in the water. She always enjoys snack time at the island(s). You see here that she has her juice and a cheese stick. (Healthy, right mom?)  Battery trouble earlier in the week kept us from going. It gave Lizzie big crocodile tears too.

Our second stop at, "the way up the river island" was good too. She found sand, lots of shells, and more juice. We even saw an eagle crossing the water. 

But then the trouble came. The motor wouldn't start. Need I say we were about 10 miles up river from our put in location?

Now we weren't really up the creek (river) without a paddle, just without a CELL PHONE!   And so the paddling began. Thank goodness there was lots of current. 

Grandpa was the hero, as he paddled down river for about a mile. There he saw someone on the bank and he asked if they had a cell phone. Luckily they did and even luckier was that it had reception down between the bluffs. 

Who else to call but my bff, Diane. After all, she had been rescued by us from the same spot, years ago.  It would be about a 20 minute drive for her to come and get us. 

It was a nice shady spot to spend a few minutes watching the river and drinking some kool-aid.

After getting the truck and going back to retrieve the boat it was brought home for closer inspection. The battery had some corrosion on it. 

However the real culprit was a battery cable, the end had corroded off. It will be replaced today and we will be back on the river tomorrow!

Life is good!

Friday, August 23, 2013

Friday Fun!

I started my day off with a trip to Central Dairy. It was featured in this month's issue of Midwest Living. My friend Betsy works there. I had one of the workers take this picture of me reading the magazine. (I then emailed it to Midwest Living) I left the magazine for Betsy as she can't find it out yet, in town. 

Before I went to town I won this great give away from a call in radio show, where my friend Betsy works. Yes the same Betsy that works at Central Dairy. I won two movie tickets, a large pizza with lots of sides, 4 free coupons from McDonald's, and a $25 gift car for some car detailing! No it wasn't a rigged phone call to win either!

I then headed to Mennonite country.  There I purchase this huge roll of quilt batting. It was literally stuffed in my jeep. That was even after I had the back seat taken out. 

I found these novelty prints there. I love the one with antique sewing machines. It even has my 1931 crank Singer on it. 

It was on to the produce auction. I was a little concerned that I wouldn't get anything since it had started two hours earlier. I ran into another retired co-worker. He said actually the first two hours everything was sold in "big" lots. That was mainly for people who would resell or restaurants. 

I saw them selling beautiful fresh made pies and baked good, corn, egg plants, cucumbers, tomatoes, a 75 lb watermelon, spaghetti squash, green beans, pears, peaches, fresh eggs and the list goes on and on.

Beautiful flowers sold by the bucket fulls. 

Boxes were much more of a manageable size. 

I came, I saw, and I conquered. Okay I won the bid. I wanted okra and I got it 

So far, I've canned 4 pints of pickled okra, fried some fresh for dinner, and I have some diced chilling in the freezer.  I have another bag I will tackle in the morning. 

And then there was this today . . . 

Sorry it's not a very clear picture. 

But you try to open your living room window, to look out and photograph a COPPERHEAD.

You see I found this guy laying next to our front steps last night when mowing grass. If you remember I shot a snake earlier this week, but this one was next to the foundation. No way could I get a shot. I know a shovel would be an option for some, but not for ME.

Our dog was bitten by one 3 weeks ago. It makes for one sick ,pitiful dog. I didn't want that again. 

I am happy to report he is gone tonight. GONE.  Thank you Mr. neighbor man who stepped in for the absent Mr. Blacksmith. 

Life is Good.

How to bind a quilt

I have put binding on hundred of quilts, but Missouri Star Quilts have a tip or two here I didn't know about. 

If you visit their web site today (8/23/2013), they have free shipping today only. I was just in their store last week. It's awesome!

Monday, August 19, 2013

Annie get your gun!

Life is great. The hubby is out of town for the week. I went window shopping, priced new carpet, priced  new televisions. Checked out bargains at TJ Maxx. Went to three hardware stores, Lowe's, Menard's, Westlakes, with my last stop to Hobby Lobby for fabric.  Shhhh! don't tell him.

I came home and made me a little brunch/dinner. I stir fried some shrimp, added some onions, and zucchinis. 

It was so yummy!

Afterward I was washing up some dishes when I heard Bentley barking. Something he usually doesn't do. As I walked past the window, I saw a snake curled up in the drive way with it's head up in a strike position

It was only 3 weeks ago that he was bitten by a copperhead. 

I screamed and screamed.  Did I tell you I have laryngitis? I really do. But somehow, my screams came out. I called him and he just kept barking. I went in, got the whistle, no deal, he was not backing off.

I went back in, and got the 22 with 3 bullets. I fired one away from Bentley and the snake. Immediately he came to my side. (Thank you very much Mr Blacksmith for teaching him that trick). I put the dog in the house and went back out.  One shot and I got him behind the head. But since I was so mad, I gave him one more shot! 


Life is good!

Sunday, August 18, 2013

One UFO finished

I found this wall hanging in my stash of UFO's. So I machine quilted it last week. Every little diamond you see is quilted too. That's a lot of diamonds. 

In order to find some sewing and travel time I gave all these tomatoes away!

I even gave away this huge dishpan of Jalapenos. I really don't know what I would have done with them anyhow.

Here's one last picture of our purple beans, I mean green beans. I canned 5 quarts. As soon as you fill them up with hot water, the top of the jar starts turning green. One of my FB friends said all of hers came unsealed. I am keeping my fingers crossed.

More sewing and canning coming up this week!

Monday, August 12, 2013

Canning Chili beans

Yesterday we canned chili beans. Come winter when the snow is blowing, there is nothing better then a bowl of chili to warm you up.

You may ask just how did I work these up.  Let me tell you.

Chili Beans

6 cups dry kidney beans
4 medium chopped onions
1 pint jar diced tomatoes
2 small green peppers chopped
1 Tablespoon red pepper flakes
6 cloves garlic diced fine
6 Tablespoons chili powder
2 Tablespoon dry mustard
2 Tablespoons brown sugar
2 Tablespoons salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper

Rinse beans. Cover with 2-3 inches of water in a large pot.  Bring to a boil. Boil for 2 minutes and turn off, cover let set 1 hour.

Drain, drain again, cover with another 2-3 inches of water. Add remaining ingredients. Bring to a boil, stirring occasionally for 30 minutes. 

Pack into pint jars. Pressure can for 90 minutes at 15 lbs. 

Today, August 12, it was a steamy 88 degrees, but you know what . . .we had chili for dinner!!  We also had leftover fresh peach pie. Yum yum!

Sunday, August 11, 2013

I am not a prepper, I am NOT a prepper, I am NOT a PREPPER!

No, we just like our food fresh from our own pantry!

Wednesday we went to the Excelsior,MO Mennonite community. We bought this 1/2 bushel of peaches for $12.

So over the weekend I put up 21 pints of peaches.  I also canned 11 pints of pinto beans and 9 pints of chili beans.  

I then rewarded us with this lovely peach pie!

I also made 5 pints of pizza sauce. I froze it in individual containers, 25 in all! Not pictured is the 6 pints of spaghetti sauce that I made at the same time. 

The blacksmith made soap the past few days. On the left is a pumice soap, similar to Lava. On the right is a mild Castile soap.

It's been a very productive weekend.

I repeat, I am not a prepper! (Not sure about the blacksmith though) We just love our fresh stuff!

Monday, August 5, 2013

2 baby quilts

I finished two baby quilts last week. 

I embroidered Brooklyn's name and the year. A little variance from my usual paper piecing of the name. This quilt is for my Godson's first born daughter. 

This one you saw on my blog yesterday. It's for one of my co-workers, I mean now X co-workers. They are not reveling her name, so I just used "Miss". 

I made both quilts using one jelly roll and to that I added a yard of black, and a yard of pink fabric. For the pattern, I found this great YouTube video from my favorite quilt store, Missouri Star Quilt

After I had the blocks completed, I just played with them until I found something I thought would work. Both quilts are machine quilted. 

Sunday, August 4, 2013

Life is Good!

It's really a 7 letter word. Let me spell it for you . . . R-E-T-I-R-E-D

Yes that's what I am now.  

For 24 years I worked part time for the local electric cooperative. It was the best of two worlds for me, being able to stay with my children when they were younger and work too. For the first 4 or 5 years we lived one mile from the office. After that is was a six  mile drive.

My children were in 2nd and 8th grade when I started.  Now my oldest grandchildren are almost at that age. 

I worked with some of the best guys (i.e. linemen) you could ask for.  To many of them, I was old enough to be their mother.  Some felt I was it seemed, as they were always asking me to patch jeans, gloves, tool bags, pillows, curtains, and lord knows what else.   I made their babies' quilts. They in turned warmed my car in the winter, parked it inside during hail storms, trimmed my trees,restored my electric during terrible storms, and  gave me mulch.  One of the best things was our lunch conversations.  Never a dull moment.  I will miss those guys.

There were the inside office people too.  Those that I traded garden produce with, exchanged recipes with, baked birthday cakes for, had their kids over for sleep overs and 4 wheeler rides, and comforted each other when we lost parents and siblings, even losing co-workers (miss you Big Frank). 

I was treated to a dinner last Wednesday evening by the group from my branch office.  We went out for dinner and drinks at a Mexican restaurant. 

I also delivered one last baby quilt. 

At the dinner, I was presented with a card that contained a very nice monetary gift. 

Friday was my very last day at work. It happened to be our Annual meeting day. A day when all employees work very hard.  There are members to register, feed, entertain, and seat for a business meeting. 

So for my very last day, I got HIGH!

After that thrilling ride we all gathered for a nice toasting for me.  Then I was presented another card with another very nice monetary gift from the main office employees

My son in law will be glad to hear that I just might use it to replace my 17 year old big screen TV!

Now that I am retired I even have the T-shirt to say Life is Good!  Thank you Margie and Phil for the sweet retirement gift.

Life Is Good!!!!!!!!!

Thursday, August 1, 2013

My new face mug

When we were in Brasstown, North Carolina I met up with Robb Withrow a local potter. You can read about it here.  His pottery shop is Smoke in the Mountains. 

We talked about an order for the Blacksmith Association of Missouri, specifically the Boutique part of the organization. 

When I got home I contacted my friend Judy at Capital Rubber Stamp Company. She made the BAM stamp for me in a matter of minutes.  

Thanks to Robb, I am now offering BAM mugs for $15 a piece in the BAM Boutique.  They are awesome!  It's like Christmas unwrapping all 40 of them.  Every one is a little different, the uniqueness of being hand thrown.

Thank you Robb!  

P. S. I really want to keep all 40 for myself, but the blacksmith said I don't need that many.

While at Robb's shop I couldn't help but fall in love with his face jugs.  So when my friend Bob and his lovely wife Bryanna went to pick up my order I told them to throw in a face mug too.  Thank God they didn't take me literally and "throw" it in. 

 As you drink from the back side, it is so smooth. It keeps your beverage steaming hot. 

Isn't he adorable???