Thursday, November 12, 2009

POLYGAMY


Yes I am admitting I am a polygamist, that is a polygamist projector. Weird way to term it I know, but one of my favorite podcasts Stash and Burn talks about monogamist projects. This of course means starting and completing one project at a time.

So naturally I took the idea one step further and realized I was a polygamist quilter,knitter,reader,and even blog surfer. I was worried that I was ADD, but now know I am only a polygamist projector. Whew thought I might need therapy and medication.

I have however finished two projects, well really one and half. The socks are from the Octobersock knit. I was hoping these would be done for Halloween. Didn't make that deadline but they are completed for Thanksgiving. The quilt has been on the table waiting to be quilted for months. Last weekend I think I got my MoJo back. Finished quilting the quilt, finish binding on a quilt for a nephew and the October socks are done. Polygamist projector yes I am!

Sunday, November 8, 2009

WHERE HAVE I BEEN


Where have I been is the question. I seem to always be doing something but never anything important. A little knitting here , a little sewing there and only as little cleaning I can live with.
I have started to walk again and am listening to Stash and Burn. These women talk alot about patterns and different kinds of yarn. Often I have no idea what they are talking about, but I really like their voices. Weird I know!

Made some bread, five loaves to be exact. Gave some away to friends and family. Greg and Leslie will be recipients of organic wheat flour I grind. Lezlie has some very good laying hens and is kind enough to keep Eric and I well supplied. My bread recipe is from the Urban Homemaker. I have used this recipe for years and it never fails.

I made this apron, it reminds me of my Grandmother Nellie. Here is a site to review some Free Apron Patterns. Sorry about the flash in the picture.

This pattern is called Church Ladies. I bought it at a Quilt Store in Northern Colorado.

Hope all who read this blog, especially my daughter in China has a wonderful week.
8 months to go.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

SEWING CLEAN-UP


I have no idea what I have been thinking of these past 20 years. Why did I ever buy all this? Oh, I am like so many quilters, we love to buy, buy lots and faster than we can ever sew up all that fabric we have collected.

A women I knew who loved to quilt, died last year and this past month her family held a garage sale to get rid of the last of her treasures. I was moved and horrified. This was going to be my treasures out on the driveway in the future. With my girls smiling and repeating;" she had a way of collecting fabric faster than she could produce the quilts". When my Grandmother died she had boxes of cards. Cards that she always intended to send, but their were just too many. She did not know that many people to communicate with all those cards. I thought how sad, she spent hours picking out the right card for that "someone" some day. I do not have cards, I have fabric. Same obsession just a different medium.

This sale disturbed me enough that I have spent 3 days in my sewing room trying to get some control over my dilemma. I have made great headway but still a long ways to go.
I can actually see the carpet on the floor, it's blue! Two car loads of "stuff" has been delivered to Salvation Army, and the fabric under the cutting table filled 6 large bins , organized by color.

I have not seen this cutting table for maybe a year, the corner table for possible 5 years! I forgot how much I liked the wood on the corner cabinet.
Sewing machines is another"medium" I have in excess. I was telling my husband that each child will inherit three . The look on his face was priceless, some call this look SHOCK.
We will not even discuss the yarn today.

SNOW


Yes it is October 28th and we are in a major snow storm!!



A little early for us but it is beautiful outside. Big snow storms has a way of keeping people inside, close and comfy. Since we can not drive around we are forced to just SLOW down and enjoy the beauty.


I think the Good Lord knew we would never slow down enough to enjoy this beauty if he did not make it impossible to get around. Smart God.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

USING UP and GETTING THINGS DONE


Here are some of the things I have been doing lately. This quilt( or one similar to it) I saw on a blog, a knitting blog non the less and I liked the idea. What I really liked was the quilting, simple yet elegant. So down to the overstuffed sewing room that is truly a one butt room now.
Any who, down to the room to find some brights that would look good with white. This is what happened to the brights and white. I like this quilt simple and soon to be elegant.
October is "Octobersock" month and their are several mystery sock patterns all over the internet. The one I started was from Through the Loops. I am a slow knitter not like some of these bloggers I read.a friend to knit with. C..look this one up I think you will really like it.http://throughtheloops.typepad.com and a friend to knit with This little blanket is using up all sorts of odds and ends yarn that just need to be used and out of the stash. Not real sure as to how this is all going to turn out, but it is fun creating.

Another rug that again is using up scraps that have been sitting around taking up airspace for too long. Kathleen and I are working on rag rugs. Mine is willy nilly, holding true to my love of scraps and the more pieces the better, while Kathleen's is an organized well thought out color scheme of left over fabric.

What are you working on these days? Getting projects done? How about your purse C.? Please comment on the projects you are completing in the month of October.

Sunday, October 4, 2009

CANNING APPLESAUCE


Canning applesauce is easy and the effort is well worth the treat in winter. We like our applesauce chunky. so the first step is to buy large firm, crisp apples. you need alot because they will cook down.
I quarter the apples, then cut the core out. Then I peal them with a knife. You can buy all sorts of fancy apple cutters and coring devices, but I have found this the quickest and easiest to handle

Then into a pan with about 1.5-2.0 cups water, a little sugar and cinnamon. Heat till bubbling and let the apples soften till they can be slightly mashed.

Below is what a good consistency would look like to can. This is very hot so be careful!

Fill jars to about 1/4 from top. The jars need to be hot. I put mine in the dishwasher and sterilize. Leave the door closed till you need the jars.

Put the lids on, these will seal the jar post water bath. Then put on the rings, this holds the lids down.
Heat the water in the canner till you see steam coming out the small holes. I use a steam canner. A large water canner works well too.

Fill the canner with 5-6 jars, they can not be touching each other. Put canner lid on and steam for 25 minutes. You start timing when you see steam coming out the small holes on side of canner.
And this is the end product. You should hear the tops "pop", be sure to check all tops. Press in the center and the lids should not pop up and down. If it pops down and stays down, this is OK.
Enjoy great applesauce all year until the next apple harvest.


Saturday, September 26, 2009

QUILT A-FAIR


Quilt A-Fair was this past weekend, and as usual I was a little disappointed. Oh they had about 4 booths that I really liked, of course they were either scrap quilts or reproductions of old quilts. So much of what I saw was big, big blocks with ugly colors. I know, I know, I really like the traditional quilts. I did like this quilt from a store out of Oklahoma. It is very "french" looking with the ruffled sashing, however I saw it last year at this quilt show in the same booth.
See what I mean, nothing new.
Bonnie Blue from Texas had a wonderful booth. I loved the Irish chain quilt set with a dark blue background. Yes I bought the pattern, it meets 2 of my quilting criteria . One, it is made with small scraps of fabric and two, it is a traditional pattern that is simply beautiful.


Liberty had a beautiful booth also. Again traditional patterns, however the blocks were sized quite small and the finished quilt was smaller than anything that could be used in a practical manner.
Most of her quilts were on a background of tea dyed cotton. The colors I loved as well as the patterns. She would not allow any photos, stating she did not want anyone to copy her patterns.
I certainly understand her not wanting to be copied but her patterns were all old traditional blocks that she just made smaller. She copied the original blocks herself. So why the big deal about taking pictures?
After I left the quilt show I went to one of my favorite quilt stores "Little Wool Shop" for a huge sale. I know,I do not NEED any more fabric but I WANT MORE fabric . And I bought allot of fabric too, 40 yards to be exact!



Thursday, September 24, 2009

OUR HOMES


Our homes and the way we decorate them is an insight to the people who live there. Some families like all new modern furniture, chrome, leather,very clean lines. Others , well they kinda like the willy-nilly look, anything will do just so I have a bed , chair and TV to watch. Some might call these homes low maintenance.

I like my furniture to have a family history story to them. I love knowing that my grandmother used this chair for over 50 years in her home and that my mother saved it for me when Nell could no longer care for herself. I have 3 beautiful chairs from Nell, their is a couch that went with these chairs but it was sold to a neighbor....so sad!

This couch was bought for Eric and myself when Nate was 3 months old. Eric's parents,Betty and Don, bought it for us for an anniversary gift.The couch is a queen Anne style with the high back. Betty said this would suit our tall bodies better than the other couches. Don said it was the only one in the store that was made like furniture should be made. And the price tag revealed that it was indeed the quality Don was looking for, it is now 28 years. I have only had to recover it once, about 6 years ago.

The table belonged to Betty and Don and was always a favorite of mine in their home. The Amish scene on the table was also Betty's.

Betty stitched this sampler in the late 60's and as she says after she was done the eye wear became permanent. I can see her sitting in her chair stitching by the light watching Johnny Carson, drinking coffee in a real china cup with a saucer and a cigarette burning in the ash tray.

I love walking into my home , looking around and see my family members still with me on a day to day basis. It is home, quite, safe, a place to rest and refresh. Where I walk through life's problems and know I will come out on the other side of the problems OK. I know this because those that went before me all came out OK and they are still with me in my home today.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

CANNING and FOOTBALL



Eric and I went to a football game. Neither of us had done this since the kids were very small. I think the last football game for Eric was with Nathan before he was 5 years old. We had a great time , spending the whole day eating , it was Ag day, sitting in the cold and rain watching the game. However that field was a long way off for my eyes. I had to keep asking "what happened"?
This of course was my favorite part of the game, HALF TIME with the band! Nothing says Fall to me like a marching band. Life is good !

We returned home to can 2 cases of pears

2 cases of peaches.
And these are the results of our labor.

The following day I put up 2 cases of tomatoes for sauces and winter soups.
I am not sure what it is about doing things that my ancestors use to do that has a calming effect on me. Is it because we have to slow down ( canning must be done carefully so as not to poison anyone later). Or is it simply a way to identify with them, to understand a small part of what their lives were like. Do I have similar thoughts running through my head that they had when they were canning? Like" why is canning always in the hottest month of the year"?, or" I hope people enjoy eating these fruits as much as I enjoy canning them", "where did I put all those jars I bought last year" and "where am I going to store all these full jars "? Not to mention my prize of lining up all the beautiful jars and say "this is what I did today"!

A small request to anyone who reads this blog, please leave me a comment! i know you are out there!!

Monday, September 7, 2009



More China pictures, we took so many in the 2 weeks that we were with China.

My visit to China is a trip that I seem to appreciate in time lapse moments. Something will be said and I say "oh yeah we did such and such " in China or saw this cool site or had the best laugh here with the kids. Remember trying to convince Erin to think about something else than her need to vomit every 5 minutes on the train. Caitlin told her to think that her ankle was really hurting and Erin's reply was " but I don't want my ankle to hurt" ! Erin did not see the humor in this but Caitlin and I had a good laugh. And yes Erin did recover several hours after we reached our destination and got off the 16 hour train ride.

The Xi'an train station

Thursday, August 20, 2009

WE ARE HOME


China East was the airlines we flew to and from China. Tight seating and we were sore for 3 days post our return trip

China, it was wonderful,exhausting, too much to see and a whole lot of people! The food I did not think was very good, alright but not great. Nothing like Chinese food here, all dishes in China taste the same, same spices, same oil.
We saw the Tericotta Soldiers. These carving were all done by hand to protect the emperor in his after life.


Rode the train for a total of 26 hours. Caitlin booked us hard sleepers for the trip to and from Chengdu. It was not to bad and I became a good squatter.

And this is the reason we were on the train. The Panda Bears!! They are so cute and the park is beautiful.
Am glad to be home, just wish my sleep patterns would return to their normal pattern.
Oh I bought allot of yarn 6 big yanks in China for the grand total of $15.50. China is a very inexpensive country to visit. The people are friendly,always smiling and helpful. But China is hard, did I mention that their are a whole lot of people in that country.

Friday, July 24, 2009

QUILTS and FLOWERS

Two weeks before we leave, thought I better get the binding on the quilt that will be making the journey with us. Yes I prefer to work under pressure and deadlines, no I do not call this procrastination!

I really like my flower pots.

And the front garden

The vegetable garden may be a bust this summer but the flowers are coming back to life!
How is your garden doing?

Friday, July 17, 2009

THE PARTY

Caitlin came home for 10 days and we gathered up some friends for good food and beverages.
Love the name of this wine! Taste good to I hear.
Some of Caitlin's good friends, Tina, Caitlin, Mel, and Erika.
My girls
Caitlin the LADY
The day was beautiful! We all gathered on the back porch with enough sun balanced by some shade. It has been wonderful having Caitlin home. I think I can let her go back for another year.
The second year will go by much faster than the first and we will be with her in a couple of weeks. What a summer!

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Home Again


Caitlin is home and she looks great! A little thiner but that smile still covers her entire face and lights up the room. We are going to have Caitlin time, Dad, Mom and Caitlin on Friday then a BBQ on Sunday with family and friends, hoping to keep everything low key and relaxed.

Summer and hot weather have officially arrived in Colorado. We even turned on the air conditioner yesterday. Maybe now one of my tomato plants will grow and start to put on fruit. 
I would be very sad if I had no garden tomatoes at the end of August, nothing is as good as a home grown tomato straight from the backyard, sliced with a little salt and pepper.

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