Thursday, July 29, 2010

A time to grieve.

Dear online friends,

My daddy passed away 2 days ago from a massive stroke so my hiatus from blogging is extended and I will begin posting again as and when I can.

Thank you for understanding.


Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Monster Tomato and Okra Plants

Here's an update of my
crazy tomato plant.

As you can see, it is now
taller than me in some spots.

Note:  I have my oval doily in my hand!  :)


Here it is next to the okra:

Actually, the okra is getting HUGE too.

I think it is the Lasagna Garden effect.
I went with that philosophy of just
pouring in layers of kitchen and
yard waste and not touching it
and planting right into it.

The plants seem to LOVE it!

I'm having a GREAT time
with my friends!

I hope for time of
good fellowship for
you as well.  :)

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Sporadic Entries

My posts will not be frequent next week as I will be focused on seeing old friends in person, which will be quite refreshing and very lovely!  But I will try to get one or two things in, if I can and God-willing.

James 4:13-15  "Now listen, you who say, "Today or tomorrow we will go to this or that city, spend a year there, carry on business and make money."  Why you do not even know what will happen tomorrow.  What is your life?  You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes.  Instead, you ought to say, "If it is the Lord's will, we will live and do this or that."

Thank you for following along with me on this journey of life.  I appreciate my on-line friends too!

 After all, it's always good to spend time with friends,
no matter where they may be found!

Adventurous Oval - FINISHED!!!

I've completed my PK Oval
and it's SO pretty.


It even looks beautiful from the BACK!

Happy, happy!  Giddy!!!  
Dance, skip, hop!

(Yes, I'm excited.)

This doily is from my marvelous
Patricia Kristoffersen book,
Absolutely Gorgeous Doilies.

All the doilies in the book
are done in white only.
My color choices were
white, variegated, delft blue, and yellow threads
and a size 7 hook.

My other 2 posts on this doily were:

Click on either link to read
more about the
creation process.

Friday, July 16, 2010

Decorating a Boy's Room

I've been wanting to paint my boys' rooms
for several years now.  But I want them to 
be BEIGE.  Not yellow or rosy beige.
Just plain BEIGE

I keep procrastinating because the last
time I thought I had picked out BEIGE,
it looked like Chocolate Mousse
once it was on the walls.

And that's fine in my kitchen:

'Cause that's where you eat
Chocolate Mousse, right?

And it's ok in my feminine bedroom too.


But for the boys' rooms,
I don't want
Chocolate Mousse.

I just want BEIGE!

So I consulted my interior design friend.
She has a gift with colors.

I told her I wanted a cowboy theme
in one room and an army theme in
the other one.  

So she brought me some color cards
of some beige paints she likes.

And she brought me these

for the cowboy theme.

(Isn't she great?  
Her name is MaryBeth)

So now I need to decide how to use these fabrics
to accent the room with.

Any ideas???

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

The Bomb

There is always some kind of fun going on at our house.  My boys invent games all the time.  One they have played off and on through the years is The Bomb.  

They have all sorts of board games.  Some times they play by the rules and sometimes they make up a completely new game that doesn't even resemble the original.  

That's how it is in the case of the The Bomb.  In this game, they use our game called Perfection.  (If you are not familiar with this game, it is a battery powered square box in which you depress the center and set the timer.  Then you place shapes of all kinds in the correct spaces with the goal being having all pieces in place before the timer buzzes and the depressed insert pops up and throws the pieces out.)   

They place the game ('bomb') in different rooms throughout the house in strategic positions.  They then depress the insert, reset the pieces, and turn on the timer.  

Then it is all chaos as they run away and hide, waiting for it to 'explode'.

Then, of course, when it goes off, there is much screaming and laughing.  And then they fetch The Bomb and cart it off to a new demolition site and start all over again.

I love their inventiveness.  It makes up for the screaming (usually)!

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Caryn's Bonnet

I made this sweet bonnet
for my 1st great niece Caryn
and for a very good friend's baby.

It is the same bonnet I made for Ava, tweaked.

I wish the pictures had turned out better.
The pink variegated was so bright.

It was a beautiful contrast with the white.

Again, that book is:
The Complete Guide to Thread Crochet
designs by Terry Kimbrough
Leisure Arts #3225

As the title indicates,
this book has more than
just baby crochet.

It also has 2 nice sweater patterns,
one of which I'm working on, in beige.
It also has a doily pattern,
bookmark patterns, and more.

Monday, July 12, 2010

Ava's Outfit

I apologize in advance for the poor picture quality,
but I did want to show you this sweet set
I made for my niece, Ava.

I love the flower motifs designed into this set.
I also love the ruffle effect.
I haven't had much in the way
of ruffles, ribbons, or girly frills,
as you may imagine, since
I was blessed with 4 boys.

But I sure enjoy making sweet
things for other people's girls!

Pattern:  Baby Set
The Complete Guide to Thread Crochet
designs by Terry Kimbrough
Leisure Arts #3225

Hook:  Size 7

Friday, July 9, 2010

First (and so far, only) Quilting Project

I mentioned in my afghan post that I don't seem to be able to start small on anything.  My quilting experience held true to that M.O.  I learned to make a log-cabin quilt pattern from a friend's grandmother.  (This same wonderful woman also taught me how to quilt it by hand when I got that far along on my project.)

Picking out the color combination was the first task at hand, and quite daunting to a crafting novice I might add.  Thankfully, that same friend was embarking on the learning-to-quilt venture with me.  So she helped me out with my color choices and by persevering through the process with me.  So I jumped in with both feet and got started.  This same friend, another friend, and I started a once-a-week sewing night.  This helped motivate us all to work on our projects.  :0)  (Friends are worth their weight in gold.)

To help me in my endeavor, my mother gifted me with a quilting kit for a gift, complete with rotary cutter and cutting mat.  (My mother really is quite wonderful!)


as I got started, I noticed I had way more materials strips than I was going to need for just my quilt.  Hmmm.  The next thing I knew, I was planning to make my sister a quilt that looked almost exactly like mine except for the edgings and backing. instead of learning to make a quilt and persevering through that, I had upped the ante to TWO quilts.  And I did end up going and making a few additional fabric choices to that end.  (Why, oh why do I listen to myself???  This was back in the day when I was not smart enough to consult the calm, steady DH and get his astute judgment in the matter.  Frankly, I'm still not always that bright!)

I'm glad to say that I did persevere and my sister and I do have matching quilts.  But I really do wish I would not go into overdrive so easily!!!

Here are the pictures of the quilts.   The first quilt is mine.

 In this picture you can tell that the backing on mine is 
the same fabric I used on my final trim.

Side view.

My sister's quilt, as I was giving it to her:

It was worth all the extra trouble!!!


Thursday, July 8, 2010

Dried Apricots

 Yesterday was all about drying apricots.
It was quite a process.

I borrowed a food dehydrator from a friend.

Then I commenced to slicing, pitting, and de-stringing
the apricots.  I pushed their backs forward and
tore the halves in half, making quarters, of course.

These quarters had to go in a citrus bath for 5 minutes.

Then onto the dehydrator trays...

And into the dehydrator,

Then came lots of checking and WAITING...
and checking and nibbling and WAITING...
and checking and switching trays and nibbling
(as you might suppose, nibbling
was the BEST part!)
and taking a few out
and turning them and nibbling
and WAITING...
and so on and so forth,

they were dry,
(around 10 hours later).

Was it worth it???

You'll have to ask me later,
when we start eating them!

Right now, I'm not sure.

With all this, I haven't had too much time
for hook work, but...

I've made a start on a pink pair
of Kay Meador's crocheted sneakers.

I'll let you know when I get to the pink part!

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Floral Beauties - Roses

Roses are my favorite flower of all!
And Red Roses are my favorite of favorites.

My wonderful husband bought me this rose bush
for our 17th wedding anniversary and
it has been an amazing parade of roses.
For about the same price as one bunch
of roses from the flower shop, he gave
me flowers all summer long, yearly!

A great investment, I'd say!

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Hubby's Handiwork

My husband is always looking for
ways to bless me.

Yesterday, as I was canning
the apricots, I was reminded
of a very special one that
continues to be one of my
favorite gifts ever.

A couple of Mother's Days ago,
he (and my boys) made me a
spice rack
to hang from my cabinet door.


And I love him!!!

Monday, July 5, 2010

Fireworks and Apricots

Today we had a great and productive family day!
We had the fun of firing off fireworks together.

Then we finally started to harvest the apricots.

As you can see they are small,
but there are a lot of them!

After washing them, we started to cut them up.

But given how many apricots we have,
I knew that was going to take forever,
so I decided to use my chopper to
speed things up a bit.

The older boys helped with the pitting process.

8cups apricots (pitted and de-stringed)
1/4cup lemon juice
5cups sugar

Bring to a rolling boil and boil for 30 minutes,
stirring FREQUENTLY.

Apricot jam bubbling; water-bath coming to a boil.

Almost ready!

Time to fill the jam jars:

Now for 10 minutes in the water bath.

That's beautiful!  :)

One of my readers asked what I was going to do
with my apricots.  Well, this is the first step.
We're going to try drying some as well,
as well as get another batch of jam going.

Plus, we're just going to eat some
of them FRESH, of course!!!