Saturday, October 5, 2013

October - Must be fall.

Temperatures here have finally dropped...a little.  We are only in the 80's these days.  The mornings and evening feel really wonderful though and it is so nice to be able to just open the windows for a while.  Where we live, there is not really much change from season to season.  Most of the town stays green year round and only a few of the trees will start to loose their leaves, but not until we have our first really cool spell.  Up on the mountain however, it is apple season and if one drives up there (about 35 minutes or so) then the trees are turning all their glorious colors signaling fall is upon us and winter is soon to follow.

Miss Zebra and I finished our first course of cake decorating, the basics.
This one was mine.  I did yellow roses for Texas.  I had a different blue, more of a denim blue, icing that I had intended for the border, but time ran out to make Miss Zebra's purple for her border so she used mine in the class and the teacher made me use another student's left over to get us caught up from being late.    I had an awful time with crumbs on these two cakes.
This is my daughter's cake.  Miss Zebra was very proud of herself and has now approached her school club leader to have a bake sale for their fundraising, she has offered to make cupcakes...10 dozen...lots of cupcakes.  Pretty sure I will end up helping to finish them up.  At least cupcakes ice our quickly.

Hubby heard from insurance yesterday, we are coming out quite well on the settlement.  He is worked yesterday to get our old little Toyota truck running so he can drive it to work and back, that way Miss Zebra will be able to drive herself again.  She has our old suburban as her 97 model.  In fact, it was my dad's, we bought it from my mom when dad passed away in 2003, and am pretty sure he bought it about the same time she was born.  Miss Zebra kind of digs on the fact that she has something that was her Papaw's.  She kind of got cheated out of getting to know him as well as the other kids did.  But still runs so why not.

Things are finally starting to progress, well getting started anyway, with the kitchen remodel.  I am going to a second design session with the Lowe's guy and am hoping that by the end of the week will have an official start on this thing.  He estimates 6-8 weeks for completion.  Much better than the 16 weeks from Home Depot.  A little cheaper as well, not by much, but their installation cost is cheaper, so much so that I am more than likely going to let them do it all.  Well, cabinets and counter tops anyway, we will do the lighting, hooking up appliances, floor repairs and backsplash.  Our neighbor is a contractor and he is supposed to be working on an estimate as well, but he hasn't got a lot of time as he is full of jobs and I don't know if he would even be able to do it any time soon.

Okay, so off I go.  Thanks for stopping by and have a great day.  Please come back soon and visit.

Tuesday, September 24, 2013


Here it is, September, and the month is practically gone.  Time is flying by suddenly.  Of course it doesn't help to realize there are only 91 days left before Christmas.  Big plans around here for the holiday, but I won't go in to details until I have firmed up the plans a bit.

So, recap of the month since last posting.

Hubby and kids went camping, I stayed home to clean and organize, got nothing done.  Youngest grand son, Mr. M., went and had a blast.  However, since coming back, his terrible twos have seemed to kick in from time to time. Oh not really so bad, better than most, just think it is funny.

We have also been the victims of auto theft.  My husband's pick up was stolen from in front of our house.  Makes me so mad to think that who ever did this is probably on welfare.  I just get really angry when things like this happen.  We work very hard to have the things we do.  Then, the low life criminal thugs come prowling around and think they are entitled to just take what ever they want to gain a buck with out any thought of what they do to the family they steal from.  In our case, they took a man's transportation to work, a family's means to go out and have fun, a teen's security (she is afraid they will come back) and a man's small dream that brought him happiness.  My husband look through ads and Craig's list for three years before he found that truck.  I must say, he is taking it all so much better than I thought he would.  Like he said, it is just a thing.

School is back in full swing for youngest daughter, Miss Zebra.  Her senior year.  I am struggling a bit with this, only because she is a really young senior.  Her birthday is late in the year, so even though this is her last year of school she won't be 17 until November.  In fact, she won't turn 18 until well in to her first semester of college.  So, that makes for busy days between school, year book editor, drama (she just landed her first role) and the non-school related activities of ice skating lessons and church youth events.

Oh, and Miss Zebra and I are taking cake decorating classes together too.
Six on left are mine, six (well five, her dad ate one) on right are her's.  I doubt this will lead to any cottage industry type income, but we are having fun.  I hear the instructors and some other bakers talk about how many days it takes them to do a cake...well, I just don't have that kind of interest in the hobby.  I want to be able to make some nice cupcakes to take to the church or for one of the grand kids party or for a bake sale.  I also want to be able to make a nice looking cake for a pot luck, bible group, family birthdays and such.  Actually, I want to take the gum paste course, but have to take the first two courses first.  Years ago I would make roses from clay for ceramic projects and they are very similar to the gum paste.  Honestly, from what I have seen, it is a lot like working with play dough and that is always fun.

Kitchen remodel has had several design changes, but still on hold.  Now, hubby has to finish up a couple of other projects and then we can start.  I have the final lay out decided, there are only two design points left to finalize.  The cabinets, as to whether to buy new ones or re-finish the existing ones.  I am also trying to choose whether I will be purchasing a cook top and built in oven or new stove or just keeping the one I have.  It works fine, it is just a matter of my wanting a 5 burner stove.  Will post when the actual project gets going.

Man, I am battling the sleepiness.  Keep dozing off while I type.  I can't sleep because I have a two year old running around, and may be getting his little sister this afternoon.  Think I need to get up and walk around a bit.

Thanks for stopping in and check back often.

Sunday, August 18, 2013

School Time Again.

OMG! Where the heck did the summer go.  We still have the heat, so know it was here...still here for many weeks to come actually.  School starts tomorrow for my youngest daughter Miss Zebra.
She starts the first day of her last year in school.  Well, public school anyway.  She is now officially a senior high student.  She plans to attend a local college and become a neonatal nurse.

I have been cleaning like crazy and not feeling like I am getting anywhere.  But, I have swept the living room, dining room and kitchen, along with hall.  I will mop it all later this evening when there is less traffic running through.  I also cleaned up my kitchen.

This past week, I once again was keeping my grand son.  Man did I miss that little guy while his mom was on maternity leave, and while we were on vacation, and while they were on vacation. I know, terrible run on sentence. I was also lucky enough to keep the baby girl two days this last week as well.  WOW! what a learning experience.  I never had two little ones together, spaced my bunch out a bit more.  Any way was glad that Miss Zebra was home to help out.  I am doing a little shuffling with the furniture in the rooms so am hoping that will help make things a little easier for me on the days I have both the little ones.  Part of the...awkwardness...of the flow of the house now is that youngest son, Mr. College, and his cat are staying with us until his school starts back up.  He will be here until later part of September.

Now that baby is here, vacation is done, I hope that hubby comes through and we actually get to start on the kitchen remodel.

This is the before photo.  I know it looks fine, but it really does not flow well.  And...while it looks like it has a lot of storage, the majority of the cabinets are too small to hold much. 

I have got to work hard on my sewing room this week, am putting a twin bed in it for Mr. College to sleep on while he is here.  I first thought that I would just put it in storage when he went back to school but after thinking about it, have decided that I will leave it for the grandbabies to nap on.  And...if hubby's snoring keeps up, may just sleep there myself. LOL

Oh you know I couldn't resist recent photos of my grands.

These two are my oldest daughter's two sons, they live in West Texas.
 This is oldest grand son, Mr. T.  He is ten, likes baseball and ice cream. He came to visit for a few weeks, went on vacation with us as well.
This is Mr. T's little brother, Mr. W.  He is three and likes dinosaurs, cheeseburgers, queso and baseball.

These two are my oldest son's two children.  They live here in the same town as we do and I am fortunate enough to be able to care for them during the week day while their parents work.
 This is Mr. M.  He is two and loves little animals, big animals, any stuffed animal.  Can't find anything that he really likes to eat though, very hard to feed him.  He loves his new sister though, very gentle and loving with her.
And, last but by no means least, this is Miss C.  One month old in this photo.  Not sure what she will like, but so far she loves to eat and be held.  A little spoiled to being held actually, but I will work around it.  How can you not hold a new baby?  LOL

Well, I am off to do a little more cleaning and then try to sit down and work on the menu plans.  Thanks for stopping by and please feel free to leave a comment, I like knowing if any one actually pops in.

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

The New Arrival

The last few months have been totally crazy.  First of all, let me show off.
 My newest grand baby arrived.  Pink this time.  She was just hours old in this photo.
I am so happy, so thankful to God that everything turned out so well.  She was full term, healthy, and her mom is doing great as well.
Miss C arrived July 14, 2013 weighing 7 lbs. 12 oz. and 21 inches long.  She has lovely long fingers and long toes and a long little foot as well.  Not sure if the hair will be blonde or brown yet, but she has quite a bit.  After three grandsons, am so happy to have a grand daughter to dress up.

Life is still really busy around here with all the cleaning, remodeling and catching up I have to do from being sick and some dental work that went a little wrong.  We are soon to be heading out on our big vacation adventure as well.

Got to go for now, so will be back in August and hopefully in full swing with all my cooking, sewing and crafting.  I have a list of projects to get cracking on before my daughter in law finishes her maternity leave and I will be back in day care mode.  Plus school starting back for daughter, Miss Zebra's senior year.  Wish me luck and check back in August.

Tuesday, May 28, 2013


I wrote this post, then forgot to publish it, so here it is.

Since Mr. M is finally taking a nap, I decided to take advantage and catch my blogs up.  Here is the whole thing in a short nutshell.

I finally got the pantry cleaned up, still need to clean out the main freezer and inventory it.  I am even more determined to get organized and back in to menu planning.  Will probably have to make more effort to post to my HOUSE blog dedicated to cooking, meal planning and such. In all honesty, I had totally forgotten I already had the blog established until I was looking at the main one to see how I linked the others up.  I am so totally full of good intentions and so totally end up in total failure.  I just can't stand a scattered blog so have to compartmentalize it all.  Yeah, I know, I am nuts.  It runs in the family though.  I have however been doing more cooking from the pantry, simple cooking but from scratch.  Hubby is sure happy with it.   I have been doing really well on staying on budget for the most part.  That is about to be tweaked up even more.  More about that when I post to my food blog.  I am pleased that I have hit some rather good sales lately at a local market, their mark downs due to date to expire soon, and have filled my freezer.  If I have planned correctly, I have all the meat I need to make menu plans and meals until about the middle of July.  We will be getting ready for vacation about then, so I will be buying as we need.  I will do a major buy when we get back from vacation and settled in.  More about those plans when I post to the food blog as well.  Needless to say, there will be a lot of menu planning, a lot of cooking ahead or freezer cooking to try and get myself a little more organized for after Miss C arrives.  Once she is born and daughter-in-law is done with her maternity leave, I will be daycare for a toddler and a newborn.  I am not going back to eating out so often (mainly I grab drive thru for lunch), buying processed dishes at the store, so I plan to stock the freezer with ready made meals or the components to throw together quick meals after the kids are picked up.

On the home business front, I didn't plan it well as far as timing, but am now a Pampered Chef consultant.  I don't have any friends that want to host a party, don't have room in my home to host any shows, so am not really sure how this will work out, but am giving it at least until the end of the year.

Sunday I am taking my first class to learn how to operate my new sewing machine.  It has been in layaway, the plan was to leave it there until about September.  I have determined however, it is really rather stupid not to have it home where I can use it.  After all, the reason I invested in the machine in the first place was to make my life, at least the sewing aspect of it, easier and faster.  With every thing going on all summer, I really do need it here where I can actually use it.  Still on the to do list for fall though is learning how to use my software programs, EQ7 and EQ Stitch, to get the most out of that investment as well.

Thanks for stopping by and come visit often.

Monday, April 22, 2013

So Much Going On!

Taking a break from the kitchen pantry clean up.  Saturday I cleaned out the fridge, purging spoiled left overs...why we bring home food from eating out that will never get eaten is beyond me.  Neither can I believe how much produce I end up loosing...such a waste of money.  Although, this time, the fault was with a fridge that had been turned up to high...or down to low rather...and it froze my produce.  See, I have two fridges and I keep the extra milk, eggs, produce, wine and hubby's beer all in the spare fridge.  We even froze the milk.  Trust me, frozen 2% milk is not a  pretty or tasty site.  Of all the things that I ended up having to throw away, from the spare fridge, the 18 count carton of eggs really hurt.  They did not freeze, but I had my daughter put the eggs in a bowl of water...every one of them floated to the top.  They had been in there a tad to long I think.  After cleaning out the main fridge, the poor thing looks so bare.  I have two chicken breast that are thawed out, will be throwing them out today.  They have been thawed out way to long, at least four days, and I just don't trust chicken. 

Sunday, I started on the pantry.  OH WHAT A JOB!  Everything had just been shoved in here and there and it had gotten to the point where I just couldn't find a thing I needed to cook up a meal.  Was buying things I already had and had no room for stocking up.  Not that I really need to stock up, I truly believe that I could feed this family for at least 6 weeks with out buying a thing, but the family would not like what I would be fixing.  On the other hand, they are about to not have a choice anymore.  I am sick and tired of cooking on the spur of the moment and I am not a short order diner.  I have really had enough of the chaos that has taken over my life and am putting an end to it. Life changes, different chapters and all, so I have to change with it. One thing I have realized...our family dynamic has changed, my daily routine has changed, I have not.

Here are the goals.

I am getting back to menu planning.  I just needed to know what I have on hand to work order to know that I had to clean it all up and inventory it. As I said, I am taking a break, my back just can't handle it like it used too.  May even have to admit that I am getting older. But that is thought for another time.

Changing buying habits.  As I said, the family dynamic has changed.  I no longer have two teenage boys at home, my youngest daughter is in a healthy-diet-making different food choices stage and I now have an added driver at home (now that Miss Zebra has her license) so there is no reason to buy three loaves of bread and 6 gallons of milk each week.  Plus, with the opening of more grocery chain stores (Walmart, Winco) the stupid California way of forcing the customer to buy gallons of milk in twos to get the price discount.  Now that I don't have to buy so much of everything, and I can send Miss Zebra to the store, I don't have to stock pile so much.  Besides, it is not a savings if you stock pile so much the products expire before you can use it.  OH...flashes of Extreme Couponers just went through my head. The stupidity of that show, not to mention the blatant illegal practices involved is a story for another time.


I have recently become a consultant for Pampered Chef.  Really looking forward to seeing what I can do with that.  I am not a salesman, so this kind of thing is hard for me, but I am hoping to refurnish my kitchen with some quality equipment as opposed to quantity.  That is a project for this summer, when I have Miss Zebra home to help watch Mr. M.  I will clean out an reorganize all of my kitchen cabinets...dishes, pans, pots, mixing bowls...and such.  I was putting it off because in the near future...I hope near future...we are gutting the kitchen, taking a wall out and redoing it all. Was going to wait until then so I only had to empty the cabinets one time. contractor (my hubby) has put some other things ahead of the project so I am not waiting any longer.  Soon as I get some things out of the way, I am emptying and purging my kitchen cabinets.

I also, after much thought, made a major investment in to my sewing/quilting hobby.  I purchased a new machine. A Pfaff to be exact. It does it all, sewing, quilting (nice large throat space - automatic quilting foot), and embroidery (large area). Now, thanks to a little inheritance money, I have the money in hand to pay for it.  I have put it on layaway because I am just not ready to have it in the house yet, just too tempting.  I need to finish up a quilt project...which would be nice to try out the new machine on...along with the kitchen cabinets...along with would be way to easy to get side tracked with playing with the new machine.  Along with tutorials for my new software programs. that I have had a nice little rest...back to work.  I can see the light at the end of the tunnel.  Once I know what I have on hand, I can plan menus tonight.  I will be able to then cut down the cost of groceries, hopefully enough to put a little toward the new Pfaff to save on my little egg money account.  See...what ever I have left over each pay day from the household budget is mine to keep, to use how I want, on what I want.

Thanks for dropping in, I am back to work.  Besides it is lunch time.

Monday, April 8, 2013

Big News!

NO...we aren't adding to the least I am not.  We do have a grand daughter due to arrive in July.  My oldest son's second child.

I just signed up to become a Pampered Chef consultant.  I love their products, love their recipes, so felt it was a good fit for me.  I am not really a salesman type person, nor am I comfortable speaking in front of groups.  Will see how this works out.  I figure though, if nothing else I will be able to outfit my new kitchen with all the great gadgets I want at a discount, since I will be using the kitchen for demonstrations may even be able to write some of it off the income tax as business deductions.  That would be sweet.  At least what I buy, my kit and books, gas to demonstrations, can be deducted.  AND...I know how to cook, can have some fun learning to cook healthier as a bonus.

When it is all set up, I will share the link to my  Pampered Chef page.  You can order items through me.

Until then, I am off to catch up on some other things.  Plan out the week's meals.  Make a grocery list.  You know, all the normal junk.  Also, tonight I will be working on my mom's taxes.  They are not really hard, and since she passed away in the middle of the year she didn't have that much income, but due to the cancer, her hospital visits, the donations to Goodwill of her personal belongings, she should have some itemized deductions.  I know she will get a little bit of refund, and I am not really in the mood to just let the government just have it, so to get the refund I have to file.

I hope for my loved ones sake, I die on December 31 of any year.

Until next time.

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Well, well, well!

It has been exactly a month since I posted.  That is truly pitiful.  I must work on posting a little bit more often.

On a good note, everyone is finally well.  Hubby surprised me with an impromptu trip to Las Vegas since Miss Zebra was out of school for Easter break...yes they still call it that here.  Mr. College wondered home for a visit as well, as his college was having their Winter Break...what they call the same time.  We had  good Easter, I hope all of you did too.  My oldest son, Mr. M's dad, didn't want to come over to eat an Easter dinner because he didn't want "old food". 

Guess that one is partly my fault, I made the mistake of saying that I found a ham in the freezer and was going to clean out my pantry before I bought more food. is not like I am a food hoarder and the items are really old.  The ham has been in the freezer since I bought it on sale.  I had picked up one for New's Year Day and just picked up an extra.  Three months, exactly, is not that old for a fully cooked ham that has been in the freezer since it came home from the grocery store.  The nerve, where does he think all those steaks and burgers come from.  Yes I stock up slightly when I catch a good deal, but only what I feel will be used with in a two month time frame.  As for the pantry...I clean it out and reorganize it every other month.  Purging anything that may have expired, donating what I know won't be eaten to the local food bank.  I swear, the oldest thing in my pantry may be a jar of Miracle whip bought 3 -4 months ago or a box of cake mix that may have gotten hidden that may be 4 or 5 months old.  For one, I don't stock up on things like that, and two, it just doesn't last that long around here.  Good grief, wonder what he would think if I turned in to an extreme coupon/hoarder.  They have years worth of supply stocked up in make shift shelves all over the house.  Good grief, does this child have no memory of when we were lucky to have wieners and canned tuna for several days until we got paid again?  Guess not.  On the other hand, maybe that is a sign that I did a great job of getting our family through some rough financial times, which everyone has from time to time.  I never had to get assistance of any kind for us.  Thankfully I also had the best teacher in the world, my mom.  She saved every thing and pinched a penny until it chirped.  When we cleaned out her home of 30 years to move to a smaller home, there were bags of glass jars she saved, margarine and whipped topping bowls, pieces of foil, even twist ties from bread bags.  She also washed and reused ziplock bags and Solo cups and bowls.  Oh well, I guess I should be happy for him that they aren't going through those hard times like we did.

So...goals for this month are many.  I need to get back to basics.  Basic home cooking, basic cleaning, and time for my crafts.  In spite of son, I am going to be cooking from the pantry and freezer this month.  I have a lot of cleaning to do, now that spring is here and it is warmer I can actually open up the windows and get some fresh air going through here.  I also have to get it together and even though I don't want to, have to file my mom's tax return.  Even though she passed away last year, she still had income for 6 months of the year.  On the good side, she should get a refund and I don't want the IRS to have one cent of what doesn't belong to them.  I have about 5 more quilts to make for the church orphanage project.  Now that I have received all the software programs I  purchased for quilting and embroidery, I need to sit down and work through the tutorials to learn how to make the most of them.  Oh, and I also have picked up some wonderful historical non-fiction books.  Published collections of various diary entries for civil war era, early 1920's, and World War II (from the perspective of a woman living in England).

Guess I better get some dinner going.  Thanks for stopping by.

Sunday, March 3, 2013

March - New Month

I am so very glad to have February behind me.  Very emotional month as it was the first of some special occasions with out my mom.  My birthday, the day they got the call that they were getting me, the day they travelled to San Antonio and picked me up. 

Also, I have been so sick through most of February that I don't even remember most of  it.  Just when I am finally feeling better, the women's friend from heck has decided to visit with a vengeance.  Oh well if it isn't one thing it's another.

Now hubby has the sinus/head bug going again in full force this morning.  It started yesterday, but has really got him knocked down today as well.  I am praying that he keeps it to himself this time.

On a good note, I was actually able to get a little work done this past week.  Two quilts for the church quilt ministry project, need to tie knots but will be doing that while I watch new series The Bible on the history channel tonight.  We have Direct TV and we will get the first showing tonight at 5:00pm pacific time.  I think it will be very interesting to watch as it is reported to be made more for scriptural accuracy than for Hollywood ratings.  We will see.  Roma Downey of Touched By an Angel television series fame and her husband are producing it.  Also got a UFO project completely finished.  Have three  other projects basted, need quilted and bindings.  One project finished the quilting just need to find fabric for binding, then bind and finish. 

Some other irons in the fire, bought EQStitch from Electric Quilt today.  It is rumored to be able to digitize drawings from EQ 7 for machine embroidery, including applique as well.  I can't wait to see what it will do with my embroidery machine.  I also bought Block Base, have not played with it much, but have looked through it enough to know it will be great support for my EQ 7 program.  Still going through the lessons with EQ 7, but so far have been understanding it so on the positive side with all that. 

Hope to do a little crocheting this week as well.  I just never know how I am going to feel, physically, and what I will be able to do while Mr. M is here.  He is really starting to show a lot of personality these days.

Still haven't been able to rearrange my living room furniture, but now have hubby on board with the whole idea.  I have to bring him along in stages with the plans to the house.  A lot of remodeling to do.  Now, this is just our little secret, but am secretly plotting the remodel jobs in such a way that will in the end, free up some space in the sewing room for a quilting frame set up.  Found what I want, just have to decide on which brand of machine to go with it, and...have to wait until all the remodel is completed to see just how much space will be available.  I have decided against the plan of turning oldest daughter's (Miss Zebra) room into more sewing room when she moves out.  For one, it will be at the very least two years before that happens...hoping it will be longer.  Also, have decided to keep it as a bedroom, but will be kind of turning it in to a play room for the grand babies.  Mr. M will be close to four by that time and the newest arrival (expected to arrive in July) will be two.  I can do with out a big long arm quilter a while to make room for them.  Also, the room isn't really big enough for a large set up.

Have a great day and come visit again soon.

Friday, February 8, 2013

Rough Few Weeks.

My goodness, has it been a train derailment around here or what?  I had all these great plans for things to get done while hubby was gone on his trip.  Well, I got sick and the plans all flew out the window for the most part.

I will post more details on my quilt blog about how all of that is coming, same with the other blogs.  But, for here I will just give a brief rundown on how things have gone.

I have finally gotten my sewing room all set up just the way I wanted.
I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE my chair.  The desk is working out really well too.  Since this photo was taken, I have moved the rolling cart to sit out of the way under my sewing table.  Then moved the desk over further and placed a new printer/scanner in between the chair and desk.

So, here is what happened.  I clicked on something wrong somewhere and instead of getting rid of all my cookies (the computer was slowing down some) I some how managed to make the computer restore back to the first day I bought it.  I lost all the added programs.  My files were still there, photos and such, but gone was my EQ 7, printer, Office and such.  In fact, ever since I did the restore there is one email account I cannot get in to.  I am now locked out of it and hope that I can remember my security questions when I am able to use that option later this evening.  I don't understand it, I have three yahoo mail accounts and have no problem getting in to the other two.

Oh well, that is life.  On top of being sick, and this one has really knocked me on my butt, we had two vehicles broken in to.  Passenger side windows were busted out on both of them.
Really pisses me off, they stole the registration slips from both the vehicles.  We have full coverage insurance, but $1,000.00 deductible so it wouldn't help any.  Cost $245 for van window (not getting the pick up fixed just yet) and almost two hours wait time.  Then came home to pick up a jacket and such to find the street filled with police.  A little gang of thugs had broken in to some houses  a few blocks away and ran in to our neighborhood to hide.  They were caught, although there is conflicting reports of whether the three picked up were the only ones or if there were five of them.  At any rate, then I had to go sit and wait at the DMV to get a copy of my registration.  Took an hour just to get a number, then over an hour for that number to be called.  And...of course the state has to get there money, $19 for them to push a button and print off a piece of paper.  What really got my goat so to speak, there are 18 windows to service customers at the DMV.  There were exactly 5 that actually had people working them.  Then, one worker had to come over to another one and help her (talking to the customer quite a bit - very friendly they were) for about ten minutes.  Then she headed off to a break for another 10 minutes or so.  When she finally came back to her window my number was finally called.  Now I know that those DMV clerks get a lot of cranky customers, no one really wants to have to pay all the stupid fees this state charges, but I really think that if they went to some training on how to be at the very least polite, pleasant and respectful, maybe they would get a little bit better attitude back at them.  Just saying is all.
Well, that pretty much catches us up. more thing.  Found out that grand baby number four is going to be a girl.  Finally a little pink in the sea of blue.

Thanks for stopping in. 

Sunday, January 27, 2013

Sunday - Resting

Well...kind of resting.  I was able to finish the top of my Lone Star quilt.
Although I got a little frustrated with the off set seams and sewing in an insert, I think overall it was a success.  You can click on the Quilt tab and see more details.
Also, my youngest daughter...Miss Zebra...had her first date, it was to Winter Formal, on Saturday.
Isn't she just too cute?  I know, I'm a mom and supposed to feel that way. LOL  That was taken at our house before they left.  Her dad isn't to happy to have her dating, since she is his little princess, but I told him, "she is a junior in high school, is 16, you have to let her out a little bit."  I know it is always a little tough to let the first one and the last one to go, but really hard for him because the oldest and the youngest are both girls.

Well, just wanted to drop in and update.  I am off to get a hair cut and some batting to finish the quilt.

Sunday, January 20, 2013

Moving Along

Today has been quite eventful.  First of all, I actually got a full nights sleep.  That in itself is cause for celebration.  The weather finally warmed back up to a normal temp for a change.  It was so nice to be able to turn off the heater and open up the windows and doors and get some fresh air in the house. I do need to back up a moment, and tell you a little bit about yesterday.

A while back, I had made a bargain with my daughter-in-law.  She was wanting a sectional, I was wanting just a couch and chair.  See, I have a sectional.  I took my hubby to the furniture store to buy a chair with an ottoman, we came home with a sectional.  One with cup holders for watching movies.  He never once sat in the section that had cup holders.  The set came with a free recliner, his chair.  At any rate, my daughter-in-law had a couch with a big oversized chair and matching ottoman.  I have always loved it.  Even been a little envious of it.  That was always where I managed to sit when we would visit.  So, we traded living room furniture.  She got her sectional, I got my couch and chair.  I am however glad that I did not buy a couch and chair, it does not fit the way I thought it would, but it actually works for me.  Now I have to fight my youngest daughter Miss Zebra for it, but I will win out.  Oh I know I will win out.  Today we made the actual trade.  I now have a comfy chair to sit in so maybe I will just spend a little more time in the living room with the rest of the family.  At least now I have a chair I can do hand work in.

Naturally, while the furniture was gone, they took ours to the kids house first, I took advantage of the empty floor and cleaned the fool out of it.  Cleaned the walls down, window sill out, mopped the floor and polished and oiled the wooden end tables and book shelf.   Even cleaned a couple of windows inside and out. I will be heading out to the store tomorrow for sure to replenish some cleaning supplies and do a little more cleaning tomorrow.  Miss Zebra has a school holiday for King's birthday so she is going to watch Mr. M while I get a few things done. Oh, and I get to pick up my new sewing machine.  It arrived yesterday.

Speaking of yesterday, I took a quilt class for a Lone Star quilt yesterday as well.  I posted some photos and all about the class by clicking on quilt to see the new blog.  I have been doing a little tweaking to the blog, was going pretty good until suddenly parts of the blog is not working.  However, you can click on the tabs at the top of the page and go to the new parts.  It is crazy, you have no idea what I am having to go through to add a new post now.  I just don't understand it.  I just wanted to kind of separate the main interest a bit.  A tab for quilting, embroidery and housekeeping.  Will see how it works out, guess I can always delete them and go back to the old set up.

Thanks for stopping by for a visit, please come back often.  I am off to do a little sewing and go get a snack.

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Work, Work, Work...So I Can Sew, Embroidery, Crochet

I has been a few days since I posted, but I have been really busy.  Honestly, I have.

Working in the quilt/craft room.  I really need a new name...Diva, I am not a diva.  Maybe Needle Nook...not to sure about that.  Must think about that a bit more.  At any way, here are some before photos.

So much stuff.  Not sure what do with all of it.  But I figured it all out.  I even have the room divided.  Cross stitch in one corner, sewing in another corner.  Supplies stored close to each.  Just wish I could have gotten my stash closer to the sewing table, but that just couldn't work out.  For a number of reasons, the way the furniture functions (direction doors open and size) mainly, but the biggest reason is I had to put things in a certain location to make it all opposite of the way it was.  I couldn't stand to have the rocking chair in the same corner as it was when Mom was staying here.

And...drum roll please... really, it needs a drum roll in my opinion.  Here are the after photos.
This is a stained glass sign that my dad made.  It hung in there travel trailer for many years and traveled to many places with them.  My mom loved this sign, because dad made it for her.  The red horse is because Dad worked for Mobil their entire marriage.

Okay, here is the first wall.  TV entertainment center has a cabinet on the end that opens out.  It is full of my Cricut cartridges and Sizzix dies.  The other end has a glass door.  All my embroidery supplies are in there.  Floss, embellishments, machine embroidery thread, laces and trims.  The shelves have all sewing supplies, current quilt projects and such.

Computer desk, cross stitch corner.  Mom's little rocker, which does not fit me well at all. It is very small, but of course it is about 60 years old and she was much smaller than me.  I will eventually get rid of it, but at the moment it is a sentimental thing.  It was always in her home, she loved it because she rocked both her babies in it.  Lamps for better hand stitching of course, then little drawer sets have all the office stuff.  You know, markers, pens, pencils, tablets, mailing supplies, label maker and such.  The very top shelf has little bins of various specialty yarns and my Cricut cutter.

My new sewing table.  The metal file cabinet sits in the corner, out of the way but easy to get to.  It has one drawer full of recipe and menu plan files, the other drawer if full of various files that have to do with quilting, crochet, embroidery, swaps and challenges.  I also store my cutting squares and rulers in that drawer.  Now, the long curtains are to replace the closet doors.  This makes it so much easier to get in the closet.  This is where all the good stuff and bulky stuff is now housed.  Shelves that hold bins of crochet projects, fabric for garment construction, UFO quilt projects, a cool round spinning shoe and purse carrier that is perfect for holding yarn.  Small skeins fit in the shoe pockets and the one pounders fit perfectly in the center opening that is actually for the purses.  Drawers of sewing patterns, sewing supplies, another set of drawers has quilt projects, mostly block sets or flimsy type (which I believe is the term given to a top that has been completed.  My AccuQuilt Go cutter and the plastic container I bought that holds all the dies and cutting mats perfectly are also in there.  On, and my box with the dressmaker's form is in it's own spot as well.  I made the curtains yesterday, but had the wrong rod to hang them on.  The cat gets a kick out of playing with the bottoms of the curtains.  I am not sure I like the fabric though.  It looked good on the bolt, cost $2 a yard, but it reads very busy in appearance.  But they are made and hanging.

Finally, my stash.  All folded and sorted by color.  Except the top two shelves, sorted more by novelty print.  Stack for juvenile boy and for girl, older themed too.  The new Brother 770 embroidery machine sits on the little chest or cabinet.  Another piece that was my mom's.  The cabinets hold cross stitch charts and clip boards and all the college team fabric I bought while in Texas.  Both are Texas teams.
Now that everything is in it's own special place and cleaned up, and the curtains are made, I can get started on my most immediate quilt projects.  I need to finish some crazy quilt blocks for a challenge and a swap, then a couple of throw size quilts for my church quilt ministry's project of quilts for the orphanage we kind of sponsor.  Also am making a quilt for my youngest son's girl friend.  I will post the computer generated rendering of what that should look like.  I am starting to understand my EQ 7 software a little bit more each time I use it, so figure these charity quilts are a great learning lesson for finding and using old quilt patterns and techniques.

I did manage to get the window topper completed this evening.  Let me tell you about my other little event of the day.

Went out early, in the freezing cold weather, to Walmart to pick up the correct rod to hang the closet curtains on, a rod for the window topper, fabric for a quilt class I am taking this Saturday to match the living room/dining area/kitchen window treatments that I made several years ago.  Well I added some longer panels to the dining area windows this past summer, they are west facing so I wanted to block a little more light.  Decided to make the quilt class project match the living room and will put it on the couch.  It is a Lonestar variation. Okay, back to the point.  At any rate, I was in Walmart and had a PSVT attack.  Really bad one, lasted longer and more painful than I had ever had.  I was too embarrassed to let them call me an ambulance, so I suffered and prayed that I would not pass out in the store.  When I realized that I would have to end up going to the ER, I had to go buy a package of pads so I could have some with me.  Another stupid moment, shopping with out being prepared.  At any rate, I finished my purchase, sat down for a few minutes and then managed to get to the car.

I had to call an ambulance to pick me up from the parking lot.  SOOOOO totally embarrassing, but by that point the pain was so intense, dizziness and nausea so strong that I just didn't care any more.  Well, I had been battling the episode already for about 20 - 30 minutes before giving in and admitting I had to have some help just to get some relief.  When the EMT checked me, my heart rate was only 214.  They immediately gave me medicine to bring it down, which didn't work so followed that up with a double dose.  Understand, that this medicine, when administered, tightens the chest as if in a huge vice grip.  Off to the ER we went to make sure I wasn't having a stroke or anything else.  I have to call in the morning to have a follow up visit with my primary doctor.  I swear I think it caused a mini stroke because I am having trouble remembering some things one side of my mouth now has a bit of droop to it.

Needless to say, I didn't get anything much accomplished today.  Wasn't even able to keep the grand baby and I really feel bad about that.

Well, I am off to take a warm bath and then to bed.  Tomorrow is another day and now that I am a day behind, I really need to hit two fabric shops and a local quilt shop tomorrow to pick up some fabric that son's girlfriend picked out so that I can have it on hand to work on her quilt.  Also need a coordinating fabric for the Lonestar project to use on the insets.  The quilt is shaped kind of like a stop sign.

Thank you for stopping in for a visit, please come again soon.

Friday, January 4, 2013

New Year - New Start

Well, it is the start of a new year.  They seem to actually be showing up a lot sooner than they used to.  Remember being young and thinking on New Year's Day as you eat you black eyed peas that it going to take forever for it to get to Christmas again.  So many things can change in that year.  Loved ones lost, loved ones just beginning.  Now, as this year starts, I cherish the memories of my parents that are no longer living. I miss them something terrible. I look forward to a new grand baby coming. 

Along with that comes all the plans for the year.  Do any of you make resolutions?  I used to, but just don't any more.  I just don't get them resolved.  Don't get me wrong, I still make out goals and plans for the future, both immediate and longer, but I just don't label them.  Keeps the pressure of so I don't feel disappointed or a failure because I didn't loose that weight, clean the house, eat more healthy or what ever a resolution would involve.

Are there areas I want to work on?  Yes there are, many of them, too many too list.  Okay, so I do have a list, just not going to share it.  I will say that I want to work on me this year.  I have been so busy giving me away to so many other people that I have disappeared a bit.  I think I need to find me, such a cliché saying, and then work on making me better.  I need to define my relationship with my Savior, only by getting that in order can there be any type of order to myself.  I am no good to anyone if I am can't even pull myself together.

I want to be better at being a wife, which means better at taking care of the house. Better cleaning, better meal preparation, working on getting the house fixed up the way I...repeat "I"...want it.  I have been in this house for going on 13 years and it still doesn't feel like mine.  I want it to feel like mine.  You know, like I belong instead of visiting. 

I want to be better at being a mother, which means paying more attention to my kids.

I want to have time to do all the craft things that are stuck in my head.  The counted cross stitch projects (my new obsession) that I have started.  The quilts I have planned.  All the quilts in various stages that were put away when life got in the way.  In other words, I am determined to finish all that I have started.  For a change.

Oh I am great, stupendous in fact, at making list and organizing.  Problem is, the organizing just doesn't quite get there.  I start, like sorting out a closet, then way to easily get side tracked by some sort of thought that blows through my head.  I buy all the needed supplies for doing the organizing, then just don't use them.  Maybe it is time to re-visit Fly Lady or the SHE school of thought.

I had planned to play along with a challenge or two, but am also thinking all that over as well.  I did give up and quit the Crazy January challenge.  You can read more about it on that page.  Needless to say I am way too slow at stitching so it is already driving me crazy to have the two projects I started just sitting around.  I will continue to work on them, that gives me a total of three WIP in the cross stitch department.  I have no UFO's any more as far as cross stitch is concerned.  The one UFO I had, was the Nativity, but since I am actively working on it again I have updated its status to a Work In Progress (WIP) now.  I use to have an intense passion for quilting.  I am good at it.  My dad would call and ask me what I was working on, I would email him photos, he was my biggest fan.  What ever I made - quilt, ceramic, garment construction, crochet - he was interested and loved it all.  When he died, it hit me so hard I don't think I really let myself go through a proper or rather healthy grieving process.  At any rate, I kind of stopped quilting for a while.  Now, that little bug is back and wanting to do a lot of stitching.  Besides, I think it would kind of be like disrespecting of me to not pick it back up.  I even learned in a bible study class that craftsmanship is my gift from God and I feel that by not using it I am not honoring that gift.  On one of my groups, there is a WIP/WHIMM challenge that I am the coordinator for.  The WHIMM (Works Hidden In My Mind) category in my case is about to explode.  I even bought a little bit of fabric this evening to put me in the mood.

I have to make some diamond blocks for a Crazy Quilt challenge, so will be starting on them no later than this week end.  They are small blocks, but have a lot of embellishment that will go along with them.  Thankfully, with quilting I was blessed with speed.  Guess so much of the speed gene was used for quilting that none of it is left over for cross stitching.  Sounds good anyway.  My biggest obstacle with sewing has been being able to get to my machine.  It seems that just when I get my sewing room cleaned up, something happens and stuff gets dumped in it.  Mainly, that is where boxes of Mom's things get set for me to go through.  So very hard to do.  I still need to finish up her bills, she passed in July.  At any rate, today I worked around Mr. M as best I could (along with the diversion of catching up on emails after being gone for a week) and was actually able to get quite a bit accomplished.  I bought the stuff for shelving, just need to get it attached to the wall now.  I also bought some cheap but pretty fabric to make the curtain to hang over the closet doors (now removed) and purchased a little extra to make a window topper to match.

Well, it took forever for me to get out of Walmart tonight.  Have to go back tomorrow because the idiot man checking was too busy talking and charged me twice for an item.  I also have to go to the bank in the morning, it would seem that someone has once again gotten our bank account info and made debit purchases.  Metro PCS...again...$118 dollars worth this time.  Last time it was our daughter's account and she didn't have any money in it so it only debited $1.51 but it is the hassle of it all.  Now, I have to find out whose card is being used, mine or hubby's, and they will block that card.  That sets off a whole new set of irritation as we both have so many things that are automatically debited each month.  I kind of hope it mine, hubby and the two of our kids are on a trip at the moment, won't be back until Sunday, so can't block his card.  I hate people who think they have the right to just take what they want.  Any way, I am headed to the bath and then to bed.  I would go straight to bed, seeing as how it is almost two in the morning, but I am freezing and a bath helps warm me.  Crazy thing is in another few hours I will have a big old hot flash and sure won't be cold any more. 

That's life I guess.  Speaking of which.
Meet my helper.  She has made her mission in life to eat all my threads and to see just how much skin she can take off my legs by crawling up them.  Yesterday she has started climbing up the back of my computer chair and then sitting on my shoulder.  Her very loud purrs in my ear tell me she is content there.  Just makes it a bit difficult to do anything.

Thanks for stopping by the zoo, come back soon.