Thursday, March 20, 2014

Now THIS is Texas!

  The liar's punishment is not in the least that he is not believed, but that he cannot believe anyone else.

― George Bernard Shaw


Last week I took a short trip to visit my MIL.....the lovely lady who has been my MIL for the past 45 years!  I'm not still married to her son but she is still "family"...........the darling lady on the right is my SIL.....another member of my family for the past 45 years..........These are Grandma and Auntie to my two eldest sons.....


 The trip is a short one....under 200 miles and takes one through what is known as "Guadalupe Pass"........one of our country's beautiful National Parks................
 
This Peak is named "El Capitan"




 and strange as it may seem, for the past 40 years or so I always thought it was named "Guadalupe Peak".....turns out that Guadalupe Peak is actually behind El Capitan and not visible from this angle..........go figure....lol



I've always said that New Mexico and Texas have some of the most beautiful and diverse scenery.......you can be in the mountains with pine trees in the morning and in the desert in the afternoon...........Guadalupe Pass National Park is in Texas....about 30 miles from the New Mexico border.............

I guess that's it for the tour today........I am a little down today with an intestinal virus.....prayers welcomed!  TaTa for now......





 

Friday, March 14, 2014

Done and Done! Now it's time to sew!



 Let us be grateful to people who make us happy, they are the charming gardeners who make our souls blossom.

― Marcel Proust



Whew!  I finally finished my patio project! Last fall I started pulling all the grass out of the cracks between the stepping stones in the cement patio we had made a couple of years ago because the grass had not just been growing in the cracks of the stepping stones but had begun to spread on top of them and was beginning to all but obliterate any sign of them..............I also gave away my patio table because it is just too hot to sit out there and planted an apricot tree in the middle...............

At left is how the grass looked before it completely took over.....really pretty...THEN.....but I wish I had taken a photo of what it looked like at the end of last summer when I decided the grass had to go because it was nothing like this..............grass was just taking over the whole thing....covering most of the stepping stones in several areas................



But it was also nothing like this.....which is how it looked before we poured the stepping stones in the patio.....





And I think I discovered why I had such a hard time digging the hole for the tree.....I have about 8-10 inches of really good dirt and then I start to hit rocks.....down at the end of the block I saw this cut-away view of what the earth looks like in this area!  Rocks and then more rocks!

 So anyway............I'm done and I hope that the paver sand I put in the cracks won't blow away....lol.............and now it's time to see if I can get some sewing done...........Ta-ta for now......









 

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

I'm ready for Spring!


  Old friends pass away, new friends appear. It is just like the days. An old day passes, a new day arrives. The important thing is to make it meaningful: a meaningful friend - or a meaningful day.

― Dalai Lama


While so many of my blogging friends are having to deal with snow and ice and winter....here in West Texas, we have been having some hints of spring........in fact I have been working in the back yard already......

I started removing the grass from the cracks in a stepping stone patio area because instead of growing in the cracks, the Bermuda grass had begun to completely cover the stones in several places.  I finished with all of the cracks last week and now just need to fill them with sand...........


I am also trying to get an Apricot tree planted in this same area but have learned that there are a few rocks to get through first........so, instead, I decided to sew!

My headboard has an area that has a wicker area which got torn about 20-something years ago when I moved into this house.  I loved the bed so I covered a thin piece of plywood and inserted it into the spot to cover the wicker.  I now have 3 different inserts which I change from time to time.  Last year I made one to go with my Little Apples quilt that I wasn't thrilled with so today I made this and covered over the one I didn't like.




 .....and here is how it looks with Little Apples Quilt.............So now the winter bedspread has been put away and I'm ready for Spring!  (Well.......the electric blanket might still be on the bed.....lol)

 and even my hyacinths have peeked their heads out with the warmer weather...........

................and I have some blooms on my dwarf  peach tree...................
 
Tomorrow I will get outside again and see if the water I've been dripping into the place where I want to plant the Apricot tree has helped soften the ground any so I can get back to digging..........and that's about it.......so Ta-Ta for now..........
 
 
 

Thursday, January 16, 2014

There's been a lot of baking going on in my sewing room.....


Forgiveness is the remission of sins. For it is by this that what has been lost, and was found, is saved from being lost again.― Saint Augustine


Yes I have been baking up a storm in my sewing room lately.......I had seen the cutest little pin cushion pies online somewhere and had been wanting to try making one so the time presented itself with my SWF swap.  I decided (at the last minute, of course) to make a pin cushion pie for my partner but I didn't want to have to wait for the pattern, which was only available as a paper mail only pattern,  so I tackled it myself.......The biggest problems I had were finding the right fabric that would look like fruit and then finding the tart pan for it but after finding solutions for all those problems.....here it is......................looks good enough to eat, right??






I wanted to package it up to send to my partner, Sharon, so it would look like it was sort of in a picnic basket so I made this  little fabric basket
wrapped the pie up inside a blueberry checkered scarf
 and Tada!  It's ready to send off to Sharon......

and look at the fabulous pin cushion thread catcher that Sharon made for me...............she must have somehow seen the mess I always have on my carpet with all the thread on the floor....lol....and it even has a little hanging tool bag attached.....Love it!


So since I was in a "baking" mood..................I decided "why not make some cupcakes?"  While I was looking for patterns for the pie pin cushion I came across a downloadable machine embroidery pattern for a cupcake pincushion that is an "in the hoop" pattern.  I have so enjoyed my embroidery machine since getting it last January.   It is one of the best toys I have ever had and continues to bring me joy everytime I create something new with it..........check out this cute little cupcake............isn't that the sweetest thing?

and they are so fast to make that I decide I might as well make  some more.........................I made a half dozen total and have already given a couple away..........and they definitely satisfy my yen for "instant creative gratification" ..............



 they really do look good enough to eat but they are glued to the silicone cups with bathroom caulk so they definitely DON"T smell good enough to eat......lol.............but the smell does go away as the caulk dries so I might try one later...haha

ok then........................I'm off to do something.....don't know what but anyway Ta-Ta for now......................



Friday, January 10, 2014

Live Long and Prosper!


Normal day, let me be aware of the treasure you are. Let me learn from you, love you, bless you before you depart. Let me not pass you by in the quest of some rare and perfect tomorrow.
— Mary Jean Irion



As I promised.......here is the photo of the Star Trek Tote for my Trekki friend...........I have used this pattern three times now and I really love it......I actually used the idea from another pattern but used my own measurements for the sides and pleats....I can buy a half yard of fabric and cut it into 4 pieces, then I add a 9 inch contrasting strip in the middle for the pleat.....
This time I decided to add snaps to the sides so that it can be used for large or small loads..................here is the bag with the sides open all the way...........


 Below is the bag with the sides snapped together.... Did you notice the fabulous Star Trek Command Insignia I found to embroider on the inside of the pleat?....The blue color you see is actually gray, by the way......I love this look with the sides snapped, don't you?


 I also found the Star Trek Medical insignia which I embroidered on the opposite side............I took this photo  last night and it actually shows the gray color more as it actually is.....




................and, of course....a label which is doubles as an inside pocket.............

  

I also whipped up a quick hanging towel to give to the third co-worker on my shift.... she is relatively new to the shift and I tried and tried to find out from her what her likes are and she just really couldn't tell me much more than she likes beiges and rocks and natural colors....and "eclectic" so I will have to wait til I get to know what she likes before I can make her something more suited to her personality.   I had to rely mostly on purchased items for her this year........

I did find a fabulous rock from my own collection to give her though!! My sister's ranch has tons of these gorgeous rocks....the holes formed by dripping water....


Well, as some of you might remember......this is Friday and the start of my work week tonight....................so I am going to go back upstairs and try to sew some more before it is time to get ready for work..........................Ta-ta for now........



 

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Belated Christmas Gifts......

 One of the greatest discoveries a man makes, one of his great surprises, is to find he can do what he was afraid he couldn't do." ---Henry Ford

My Christmas holidays were wonderful......had such a good time with family and friends and I count my blessings..........and I am only too aware that not everyone is as fortunate as me.......

One of my co-workers lost her husband right before Christmas this year....he became ill right before Thanksgiving so her Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year were probably the worst she has ever had.......due to that we postponed our little Christmas "party" that we have during our shift and decided to celebrate at a later date....

That being said.....I waited to finish the gifts I was making for them until this week.................one of the ladies I work with love ALL things "Day of the Dead".....so I made her these two ghastly items.....lol.....I just happened to see her admiring an apron in a catelog one day and then heard her say how she was looking for a tortilla cozy but didn't like any of the ones she saw......she will like these!


 My other co-worker loves Star Trek memorabilia so I found a fabulous Starship Enterprise Fleece throw kit and tied it up for her.............I am still working on her Star Trek Tote bag, which I will show you as soon as I'm done.........



I hope you are all doing well so far in 2014.........I wish you all the best wishes for a wonderful year!



Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Shifting into High Gear.......

You can never do a kindness too soon because you never know how soon it will be too late.  -Ralph Waldo Emerson

Two more projects done for Christmas.....I guess it's true what my Sister says, that I am at my best under pressure.....lol....I will be getting my Christmas company on Saturday and my sewing room will become a guest room so I have to get what I'm going to get done within the next 3 days!

Here are a couple of golf towels I made for my Bro..........he got his first hole-in-one this year during tournament play!  Yay Big Al!



 Today I hope I can get some more hanging kitchen towels made....and I still have to wrap presents!   Onward!



 

Saturday, December 14, 2013

Is it the last minute yet????


Give freely to the world these gifts of love and compassion. Do not concern yourself with how much you receive in return, just know in your heart it will be returned.  --Steve Maraboli




...............Is it the last minute yet??? Nah.....I still have another couple of weeks, right???

Well anyway............here it is December already and I am frantically trying to get some of those "last minute" projects done......last year I was working on my sons Dresden quilt!  (Yep, I got it done!)

This year (so far anyway) I am just finishing up some small projects like these two hanging towels I made this week for a couple of my co-workers.....................  I found a couple of "just perfect" Machine Embroidery patterns and combined them with my hanging towel pattern and there you go.............on the left an adorable Hello Kitty wreath for my friend Priscilla, who loves all things Hello Kitty 

 




and then, for my friend Maribel,on the right is a Christmas "Biker Chick" for her kitchen...............I gave them to my friends last night and they garnered all the appropriate "oohs and ahs" so I am happy.................... 


I still have a few projects I want to finish but it isn't the last minute yet so I still have plenty of time........ta-ta for now.....






Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Special Ornaments......

 We are all ordinary.  We are all boring.  We are all spectacular.  We are all shy.  We are all bold.  We are all heroes.  We are all helpless.  It just depends on the day. --Brad Meltzer



Every Christmas season all the boxes of decorations and lights usually make their way down from the attic over the garage the day after Thanksgiving...........
One year I had been to a garage sale earlier that year and had found several boxes of gorgeous dusty blue and mauve ornaments in all sizes............and so I decided that for that year I was going to create one of those "decorator" trees using only red and blue lights and these marvelous ornaments.......I also bought rolls and rolls of gold ribbon and made dozens of beautiful gold bows to add to the mix "like they do at the big department stores".....

After spending hours on the tree I stood back and looked at it and my heart dropped........I didn't see the cherished ornaments my kids had made at school with the pictures of them glued on.....I didn't see the ornaments we had all sat and made together.......I didn't see the ornaments my sister had made for me....nor the ones my friends had made or given to me.....in other words.....I didn't see MY Christmas tree!  I went to my boxes marked "Special Ornaments" and pulled them out....added some colored lights to the tree and when I finally looked at the finished product...there was MY tree!   

I have gone from a 7 foot tree to a 4 foot tree over the years because pulling a huge Christmas Tree box from the attic got a little harder....but every one of those special ornaments fits on that little tree!
(ummm....I bought a 2 foot tall urn to put it in and....Voila! It is now a 6 foot tree!)

so let me show you some of the ornaments that are so special to me...
 
First here are the ones my sons made at school for me......and the ones we made together over the years.....




 and the ones friends made for me or gave to me...... The Santa, angel, stocking a snowman were those "cookie dough" ornaments that were baked and then painted by a co-worker way back in 1985.....I had a dozen of them to start with but over the years a few have broken....

 My Sis, Irene made the ones on the right and my sweet Grandsons send me a new ornament with their photo each year like the ones below....









So, tell me, with all that love I just showed you why would anybody want a decorator tree at home????

Have a wonderful Christmas everybody.....ta-ta for now.....