Can You See Me Now?


This big blob of snow, ice and rain is covering almost the entire state of Michigan. I’m under the blue part waving at you. Can you see me? The snow is coming down at a rate of 1-2 inches per hour. Everything around here is closed. Colleges, day care centers, airports… everything. I’m working from home today writing a large proposal. I can do that and stay off the roads. Life is good.

We went to a Christmas program last night that was put on by Jacob and Samantha’s school (really cool day care center). It was in an auditorium with a stage, and the kids did such a good job! Sammy was even on stage, being held by one of her “teachers” doing Jingle Bells. The toddlers all had bells and rattles, which they loved shaking.

Jacob was on with the Pre-Kindergartners, front and center. He knew just what to do, and followed directions to a T. That’s our boy!!! Singing “The Mitten Song”, Jake’s in the front row, black mittens right in the middle.Christmasprogram08

Sammy Sammy sat with us when she wasn’t on stage being adorable… either with Grandpa or with Daddy. This will be a really fun Christmas!


Mish-Mash Mad Dash

Sorry I haven’t posted in awhile. It’s not like I didn’t want to… my laptop has been on the fritz and the WiFi won’t connect to anything. Looks like I have to mail it to HP, which I definately DON’T want to do, especially this time of year. Geesh! And, of course, it crashed the day my 11 day vacation began. Geesh again! Now I am relegated to sharing Dean’s computer, and not wanting to be a “puter hog,” I try to stay clear of it when he’s home from work.

We had the family over
for dinner at our house on Thanksgiving. It was a fun day, lots of laughter and cuddling. Grandson Jacob loves playing with his Uncle Loren (my youngest son), and Samantha was in a wonderfully playful mood. It’s hard to believe she’s old enough to crawl and pull herself up to stand at the furniture! 10 months old already. Time sure flies!

We woke up on December 1st to our first major snowstorm of the winter. It was very pretty, and all the area schools were closed, giving teachers, children and bus drivers an extra vacation day to add on to the Thanksgiving break. I love it when the snow clings to the trees! This morning when I got up, it looked like a sepia-tone photograph out my back window.

Awhile ago, I showed you this quilt in its early stage. Yesterday, it crawled onto my quilt frame, and today I’ll be working with Millie to begin the quilting process. Here’s Millie’s photo with her hugging the new quilt, officially titled “Simply Squarific.” It is a full-size quilt, approx. 84 by 96 inches.

I announced a Thanksgiving giveaway, and have selected a winner by random number generator.
The winner is…
Nihal of Istanbul! Her blog isn’t a quilt blog, but it is extremely interesting, and I’m happy to send her my book “Contemporary Quilts From Traditional Designs.” Nihal, please contact me so I can get your mailing address.

Now, I’m off to shower and go play with Millie. Have a wonderful day!

An Owl and a Snowflake Melt… in September!

I haven’t worked much over the last two weeks on anything but Jake’s Ninja Turtle Quilt. I’m trying to get that done by the end of this coming weekend. I think I just might make it!!! I’m past the half-way point of machine quilting it.

Last week, I missed making the Dear Jane “Block of the Week” for the first time. I wrestled with myself Sunday night to sew it, but after painting at Sean and Kim’s house most of the day, I was plumb tuckered out. I’m the kind of person who sets goals and stresses myself out over them. I have to keep telling myself that my life doesn’t depend on getting things done in MY OWN set deadlines. But now I’m dealing with the guilt from missing a week. I know, I need serious help!!!

But, today is only Wednesday, and see – I got this week’s BOW completed! I had a fun, relaxing evening last night hand piecing this block, H-9 Snowflake Melt. Come pat me on the back!

I finished this little redwork owl recently for my owl quilt. No self-imposed deadlines on this. Just little stitchery blocks to fiddle with when I want something relaxing to sew on. I love owls!

No work tomorrow, as I travel to Houghton Lake for a funeral. So sad to be only 27 and suffer so. God bless you, Ryan Earegood. You were a good man, and will be sadly missed by many.

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Turtle Power!

Sometimes you can spot an artist by the stroke of their brush. Others by their particular medium, style, sense of humor… or palette. My husband says he could spot my work a mile away by the way I blend my colors. I seem to (usually) prefer muted tones, steering away from bright “shock me” colors. Maybe that’s why my latest creation is giving me a giggle. The colors are WAY out of my realm. Or, maybe it’s why I have an ear worm that won’t go away. Or, maybe it’s the sense of history repeating itself. I dunno.

The Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles first appeared in 1984 in a comic book. On December 14, 1987, the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles’ first cartoon series began. At that time, my boys were 11 and 7. If you visited our house, you could find a ninja sword somewhere… and a ninja mask was probably not far away!

Grandson Jacob is getting a new bedroom soon, along with his daddy’s twin-size bed from when daddy was a TMNT fan. Jacob’s room has been painted “asparagus green,” although Jake calls it “Ninja Turtle and Hulk green.” Whatever. He needs a quilt for his new bed. What better to sew up than a… YOU GUESSED IT – Ninja Turtle quilt.

What you see above is the middle portion of the quilt, based on two TMNJ panels I bought online. It’s pretty hard to find TMNJ themed fabric, though the turtles are very popular again. So, to tie the turtles in with his green room, I found this cool batik fabric. Seems pretty turtley to me!
The main problem with this quilt? The Turtle song will NOT leave my brain while I’m sewing!!!
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles,
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles,
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles,
Turtles in a half-shell…
Turtle Power!
Oh come on, sing with me! It’s Ninja-Time!

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A "Two-fer Tuesday"

Tuesday. The second day of the week…
“On the second day of Creation, God made an expanse to divide “the waters from the waters” (Genesis 1:6).

Certainly nothing quite as awesome as that, but here on day two are two more Dear Jane blocks, finished this past Saturday and yesterday.

E 10: Five and Dime. If you remember the “five and dime” stores, you might be my age (or older). I used to love going to the one in downtown Flint, Michigan and the one in Durand. Lots of fun, lots to buy for very little money.

F3 – Snowball. A simple little block to paper piece or hand sew. I paper pieced mine with a fun fabric that Susan Moore (Australia) sent me. Love it!
Now, in Michigan it’s not very smart to make a brown snowball for obvious reasons. AND, schools frown on the throwing of snowballs, also for obvious reasons. But I love snow! And when I taught second grade, there was nothing more fun than playing in the snow with my class. I remember one day right at the end of lunch recess and a beautifully deep, fresh snowfall. Most of the students had gone inside, but the principal (a friend of mine) was still outside waiting for the last of the children to enter the building. someone threw a snowball and hit him right on the back. He looked shocked, and I scooped up a good, hefty ball of snow and threw it at the back of the little boy. He turned around and, very stunned, looked at me and said “Hey, why did you hit me with a snowball?” I replied, “Don’t you know we don’t throw snowballs at Gaines Elementary?” Two seconds later, the principal also scooped up a snowball and hefted it at me. I tossed one back. Then all of my class got involved, and we had the most fun five-minute snowball fest you’ve ever seen. There was SO much snow flying, and so much laughter I thought we would all wet our pants.
Later in that season, I took the same class to Crossroads Village outside of Flint. It’s a little village that was created to look like the old times, with historic buildings from the area that were moved to spare demolition and preserve their history. It was a beautiful snowy day, very cold, and we grew weary of waiting for the train to take us for a ride. One of the kids said “This is boring! There’s nothing to do.” I flopped down in the snow and started making a snow angel. Pretty soon, 25 kids were lined up along the platform making 25 angels. What a sight! Wish I had that photo!
The summer is drawing to a close. Hope this cooled you off. Pretty soon, the snow will be flying once again. Maybe I’ll make snow angels with Jacob!

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Beach Babies Safely Home

My oldest son and his family returned safely last night from a week-long trip to Daytona Beach. Two of my favorite pictures…

“Sammy – Pretty in Pink” Beach Baby and “Jake the Sand Angel.” These are keepers!

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Double Your Pleasure, Double Your Fun

What a fun weekend! Jake and Sammy spent the night Saturday! Look who doesn’t just lay around anymore! Though she can’t sit on her own yet, Samantha does NOT want to be on her back. Oh, pardon me. Except when she rolls to get where she wants to be. And she’s climbing! And teething (oooooh… owie). Also on some solid foods now. Do you happen to know how absolutely fabulous strained carrots can be? More! More!

Jake, Grammy and Bumpa put together the big dinosaur puzzle. Loads of fun (oh my aching knees). Grammy went to bed at 9:00 PM Sunday night. Wonder why?

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Frolick in the Sun

Those of us who weren’t afraid to put on a bathing suit enjoyed the waters of Waterford yesterday. Samantha opted to snuggle with her Grandpa Dean, while Jake showed off his slick new swimming techniques to his daddy. Lots of fun in the sun, followed by a festive feast along the shore and a bonfire in the evening. Doesn’t get much better than this!

I spent some of the weekend quilting my first quilt on the new Pfaff Grand Quilter. here’s a sneak peek…

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Ahhh… Everything Comes Around!

There comes a time in every parents life when they look at their children and think to themselves (or perhaps even say to their children)…. “Someday you’ll know just what it’s like.”

Have you ever thought that?

Take, for example, this adorable little boy. You know those little sticky toys that look a lot like a gummy worm? You throw them on the wall and they stick? Well, it seems that little Jacob ATE one tonight while leaving the restaurant. You can get them out of a gumball machine, and what kid doesn’t love gumball machines? Looks like a gummy worm! And it goes right in the mouth and down the throat. Jacob’s dad (my son Sean) calls me and asks for suggestions as to what to do. “Give him LOTS of fiber, lots of water, and it should come out on its own. BUT, you need to make sure, so the worst part of this is LOOKING FOR IT.”

Ahhhh, yes. I remember a little boy about 28 years ago (during the time period before his little brother was born) who found a full pack of ExLax. You know the kind that comes wrapped like it’s a chocolate candy bar? Yes, well, Mommy was very pregnant, and sometimes things need help. Ahem. Little boy comes out of the bathroom with “chocolate” all over his face.

“What do you have all over your mouth?”
“You ate something, now tell Mommy what you ate.”
“I ate your candy bar. Mommy.”
“What candy bar?!?!?”
“The one in the bathroom on the shelf!”

Imagine what our night was like after the candy bar!

Here’s our adorable grandson Jacob again. Looks like he is getting his hair washed, doesn’t it? Actually, this is PRE-hairwashing. Here, Jacob has HAND LOTION in his hair. And then there’s the clown-face boy after enjoying Mommy’s lipstick.

Yes, everything comes ’round. I remember finding Jacob’s father in his crib after a nap at … oh, around 2 years old. He woke up from his nap and decided to take the industrial sized jar of Vaseline off the dresser next to his crib and apply just about ALL of the contents on his lovely brown curls. Try and get THAT out!

Yes, life gives us adorable little boys and girls. And with that comes a lot of “fun.” Enjoy it! They are only little for a short while. Then they get to experience the joy on their own!

<— Jacob's Daddy.
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Remember this pose?

Check out Stormie and the strip pieced quilt here

Apparently she’s not the only girl who likes this chair!!!

Jake and Samantha spent the night Saturday night. Sammy likes sleeping on the leather chair!
A good time was had by all. Excuse me while I go take a nap!

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