Thursday, March 31, 2011

Why, of Course!

My neighber stopped over this week and said that he was cleaning some "stuff" out and found a box of sewing "stuff" from his mom.  He wondered if I would be interested in any of it before he threw it in the trash.  Why, of course!!!!! 

Look at the old buttons and two layers of wooden spools of thread.  How could I refuse????

It has been a crazy busy week with lots of little ones around which I love, running here and there for maintenance on the car, which I despise, and trying to get a little sewing done. 

Don't you love this hair.  I do hope it will eventually lie down for her sake.

Finished the embroidery and piecing of the Raggedy Ann quilt.

Borders are on the Thread Head Quiltalong.

I've been playing around with some hand sewn puzzle pieces....lots of fun.

The weather has been warm and beautiful all week and I am loving it.  Today it reached 98* - perfect for this sun loving lizard.  The birds also seem to be enjoying some sunshine as they are at the feeders all day.

The finches are here in mass.  I love how yellow they are.

A family of quail have also found the leftovers from the feeders.

That was my week and I am looking forward to the weekend.  I hope that your weekend will be terrific.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Spring....Who Knew?

Spring is here....right?  Thankfully our male orioles have returned so we actually know that spring has arrived.  We have had some wicked weather this week and are awaiting the next storm this afternoon.  I am hoping that it is nothing like this past weekend's cold, wet and windy one.  There are so many downed trees that it looks as though a tornado blew through.  Our plants must be wondering what happened this year with a hard freeze and then the winds to torment them.

My mom's neighborhood had lot of trees down.

First the freeze and now the wind did the hibiscus in.

I got a kick out of seeing our little finches trying to stay out of the storm.  They were hanging from the stucco on the house and would bravely fly over to get some seeds before quickly returning to the wall.

With the strong storm on Sunday we were left without power for the whole day.  It was actually a relaxing day as we lit a warm fire and I pulled up the rocking chair and worked on my embroidery for my Raggedy Ann quilt blocks.  That worked fine until dusk and then the lighting got too bad.  Candles and hurricane lanterns don't quite cut it for saving the eyesight.

The luck in my Irish blood has been good to me this month.  I have won several wonderful giveaways.  Look at these fabulous batiks from Inchworm Fabrics.  I really needed some light colored ones for my batik blocks that I have been working on so these will be perfect.

I also won a beautiful potholder from Kay.  These are pictures from her site, but look at the perfection in her stitching.  These will definitely not be abused used with my cooking, but they will be great to display.  Thank you, Kay.

My Thread Head blocks are all set to be sewn together.  I have them stacked and ready to sew.  It will be a good sized quilt when finished.

My Civil War block collection continues to grow with one block each week.  The blocks are fun to make, but the stories behind each block have been so much fun to read.

One last picture of the newest little one around here.  Gotta love the red hair!!!

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

St. Patrick's Day

Happy St. Patrick's Day to all.  I think we all have a bit of the Irish in us as we enjoy the corned beef and cabbage.  Right?  I am actually about 25% Irish so I am allowed to celebrate the day.  I'll be wearing the green so I don't get pinched.

I've been having fun with Sunkissed this week.  I love this fabric line and find it perfect for spring and Easter.  I figured a little Easter dress would look great done in it.  My grandmother used to always say, "What ye sew on Sunday so shall ye rip on Monday."  This statement kept running through my mind as I ripped and ripped and ripped.  It was just one of those days.  Grrrr.  Monday was much better and I was able to finish the dress, pinafore and bloomers to cover the diapers.

The final instructions for the Cathedral Window pillow came out today and I couldn't wait to get it finished.  Thank you, Melissa, for a great project for this quiltalong.  I really enjoyed doing it and love the way it came out.

The strawberries are in and we have been enjoying strawberry shortcake this week.  Would you look at the size of the strawberries.  They are ever so sweet too.

It seems like I find myself rushing around way more than I should, but why is it that when you really need to get somewhere on time you have a vehicle in front of you going five miles an hour?  That was what happened to me today, but I kind of got a kick out of following this guy and wondering what life was like back when these were new.  I am sure it was a simpler time.   Yes, I was driving when I took the picture, but I could have been taking a nap at the speed we were going!!!!!

I hope everyone finds their pot of gold at the end of the rainbow!

Friday, March 11, 2011

The House is Cuckoo Again

Yep!  The house is cuckoo once again.  About forty years ago my sister stayed with us for a few months while she was relocating.  She felt so badly about being a long term guest so she would buy us a little gifts as a thank you.  One of the gifts that she bought was a cuckoo clock for the children.  They, of course, loved it.  Over the years it cuckoo-ed itself to death and sat quietly on the wall. With no birdie coming out to announce the time we eventually just got used to the silence and it eventually stopped altogether.  That was about seven years ago.  Recently I found a specialist who repairs cuckoo clocks and I took ours to the shop.  A month later it is now returned and working like a charm.  The grandchildren LOVE the cuckoo bird and it is so much fun to hear it again.

It's a tough day to think that anything I could write in a blog could be important with the devastation that we have seen in Japan.  I know that our thoughts and prayers are with that country today as they deal with what has happened and what is yet to come for them.  It hits home especially hard for those of us living in "earthquake country" and makes one wonder when our next big one will hit.

With our latest houseguest gone, I have had a chance to spend a little more time in the sewing studio this week playing "catch up" on my blocks. 

Block #20, the final block is now out for the Thread Head Quiltalong.  I am so excited to get it finished and assemble the top.  Mine will be queen sized when finished so there will be eighty one blocks total. 

Blocks #16,17,18,19
I have added the third row to my Raggedy Ann and Andy quilt along and am working on the final three block's embroidery work.  I love how this one is turning out.

The foundation for the Be Mine Cathedral Window pillow with Melissa is finished and I need to add my squares this week.  I think I am going to do it in greens.

We've had a birthday as well this week.  I had to make an E.T. cake for the birthday boy and I can't believe that I forgot to take a picture of it before we ate it.    It was a hit and tasted delicious anyway!!!

My BIL getting a few baby snuggles.
Does it seem to anyone else that things tend to fall apart in groups?  This week was the week for repairmen.  The cable guy was here to repair the wireless router problems, the door man was here to figure out why a door wouldn't lock and yesterday the appliance guys were here to repair the stove fan, the clicking on the BBQ and a broken bolt on the refrigerator. more repairs for awhile....please.

Spring is definitely in the air, but we have been assessing the damage from the freeze that we had about two weeks ago.  Our bouganvilla, hibiscus and several of our bigger plumerias really got hit hard.  The region's strawberries also took a hit.  It was such a strange time for us to have such cold weather.  If the tortoises are correct, we are in for prolonged warmer weather as they have emerged from hibernation this week.  Yeah!

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Whew...What a week!

Seriously, has it only been one week since my last post?  What a busy week it has been.

Well....the weather did not cooperate with us for my cousin's sunny California visit.  We experienced record breaking low temperatures and rain.  At least we did not get the snow that many parts of the state did.  That would have been quite a shock.  Despite the rain and cold, we had a fabulous visit. 

We had to scrape the ice from the window before heading to church Sunday morning.

We visited the Reagan Library and were thrilled to find the miniature White House on display.  It is a traveling show and if you ever get the chance to visit it you must go see it.  Everything is on a scale of one inch to one foot and it is amazing!  They have working televisions, secret service attendants and vehicles.  The rooms are decorated exactly as the White House is and is constantly changed as the decor changes.  The portraits of the family are all hand painted, many times using a single haired brush.  There is no flash photography, but I hope you can see some of the detail.

We made our way up to the wine country and spent an enjoyable day touring the area.

Saturday evening we celebrated my mom's 88th birthday with a nice dinner with my siblings and their spouses.  It was a great time filled with laughter and memories.

Sunday we had our children and the grandchildren over for a BBQ.  Although the afternoon was fun, it was marred by the phone call that our son had been involved in a skiing accident.  He suffered a compound fracture of his tibia and fibula in the lower leg.  They took him to surgery that evening and placed a rod down the middle of the tibia and all went well.  We all counted our blessings that it was a leg instead of a head injury. 

Monday we dropped our company off at the airport and headed up to the Sierras to check out the "patient."  He was discharged on Tuesday and we brought him back to his wife and children who were thrilled to have him home.  With all the nursing care needed, I think we may get a nurse out of the kids yet!!!!  He has to have an anticoagulant shot each day and one of children wanted to do it for him this morning.  What a thrill it was for all!

A courtesy smile!!!

Before surgery.

After surgery.

The drive up was just gorgeous, but quite cold.  We wondered if the car thermometer would register negative numbers and we found out that it does.  It was -5* with a freezing fog.  The trees and bushes were just magical looking - all white and icy.  There was a ton of snow with the new storms that had brought such frigid temperatures to our area.

Lots more snow since our trip up two weeks ago.

I am hoping for a little more sewing time now that the busy month is behind us.  I did manage to work on my embroidery for my Raggedy Ann and Andy quilt while we were driving.  I am on my last three blocks of that quilt.  As well, I made another doll uniform for the grandchildren's school auction this coming Saturday night.  I won't bore you with another picture.

My mug rugs from Betty arrived this past week and I just love them.  They are perfect for my morning coffee.  I love the fabrics that she used and her work is just wonderful.  This was a really fun swap and I am so glad that I participated in it.

Now it is off to catch up on cleaning and laundry as we have out of town coming for the weekend.  I hope everyone has a great weekend.