Monday, July 30, 2007

Over the weekend I finished the top for Nursery Rhyme quilt that I was making for son B and DIL J's new little one that will be arriving sometime in November. J wanted something bright and cheery and I think that I fulfilled the bill with this one! Bright colors are not my natural tendency, as I love the pastels and jewel tones. But I think this will really catch the eye of the children. It was a challenge for me to make as I had no specific pattern-just a basic idea to begin with. Then the thing kind of took on a mind of it's own as one thing led to another! Of course, being the novice that I am...I didn't buy enough of the plaid companion print...figures, right? So, it got a lot more scrappy as I went along...(note the border!) But, all in all, I think it turned out just fine. See what you think.

This is a close up of one of the cute nursery rhyme blocks from the original panel. (Sorry for the fuzzy photo) But I think you can get the idea. Hope our new baby will enjoy it all through her childhood!

We are off this morning to take DH to the eye doctor. He has been having quite a time with his vision lately. They are going to dilate his eyes and see what the trouble is..I am needed to chauffer him home. We pray it is nothing too serious...I'll keep you posted.

Sunday, July 22, 2007

Long Time, No Post!

I know a few of you have mentioned to me that you have checked my blog and it's still in Memoriam for Rocky...well, it's time to move on! Not that I've been mourning this entire time, though we still miss him terribly. It's just not the same around here without our doggy!

We have had a busy July starting with the first week when two of my grandsons, D and J came to visit! We enjoyed having them so much and they seemed to have quite a good time, too! They brought their bikes and rode them up and down the lane a thousand times, helped Grandpa with chores and just generally had fun as all boys do in the summertime.A few days later all the crew came to take them home. What a van full! Six adorable little urchins!
And then their Mom and Dad, of course! We'll soon be having another little one in our family as I'm sure you can tell! M is doing great and is a model mom. B is the best of dads, too!

We have such a good time when we are all together. I'm so thankful for a family that loves one another!

After their visit, DH and I were off to visit my sister and B-I-L in AL. (Of course, I forgot the camera!)We had a great time down there, but it sure was hot and muggy! We spent most of our time in doors in the sewing room working on quilts and a table runner I had started as well as a purse I needed help with. The guys spent their time looking for a car to replace one of our older ones. And, PTL, we found one! I just love it!
It's a 2001 Impala LS and is in pristine condition! Inside and out!

Thanks, M, for helping us find such a great car!!

Well, on our way home from Alabama, we stopped at a really nice fruit stand/BBQ restaurant/gift shop called Peach Park in Clanton, AL. We bought some yummy peaches and I have since made cobbler and pie from them. There are a few left but I'm sure we'll finish them off soon. It's just not summer without peach pie! This week, I had tons of peppers coming in from the garden, but the tomatoes weren't ready yet so DH went to the Farmer's Market and bought tomatoes. I made some pretty tasty salsa that has quite a kick! The peppers, especially the hot bananas really gave their all for it! They were even hotter than the jalapenos this year. We enjoyed it the other night on our Chicken & Cheese Quesadillas.
Other than the day I canned salsa, I've been quilting. The cherry table runner is finished now and in use. I used the pattern found on The Happy Zombie's blog. It is a great pattern and easy to follow. I love the 30's retro prints as they are so happy and colorful. You can see that I'm new at machine applique when you see my cherries! They are a little large for the space, I think! This is the runner before quilting...
Here it is at home on my kitchen table. Isn't it happy looking? It just makes me smile when I come into the kitchen first thing in the morning for my cup of coffee...:)
As you can see from the close up, my appliques is still in "novice" stage!
But, I still love it! It is a gift to myself and my little wobbly table that is now feeling dressed and cheery!!
Of course, once finished with that, I had to move on down my list of quilting projects to the next one waiting. The baby quilt for another "new addition" that will be coming soon to our family. My oldest son, B and his wife J are expecting a little one in November! Big brother E is so-o-o excited! We now hear, after the recent ultrasound that we will be having a girl! But, B said that E was "supposed" to be a girl,, guess we'll just wait and see! As far as the quilt goes, it won't matter because I've chosen a nursery rhyme panel to make it from. I've really had some "hair-pullin'" moments with it because I just couldn't find a quilt pattern that suited me. So, novice that I am, I decided to make up my own! Which of course, gets me into unknown territory as far as measurements, block sizes, yardage, etc. But, I always have been the type of person to just wing it, and once again, that side of my personality kicked in and off I went! (pictures coming soon) I think I spend more time in prayer that way...asking for the Lord's guidance and wisdom to help me figure stuff out. He's also blessed me with an engineer for a husband so Friday when I was all frustrated and strung out about what to do with this quilt, DH came up to my sewing room and helped me figure block sizes and pattern plans. Not that I went with all his ideas, but his input really helped me, and talking it out helped me to think more clearly as well.

This part of my marriage is so endearing to me. My husband, especially since he's retired, has really become my best friend. We talk everything in our lives over with each other and truly respect one another's opinions, even though we are, generally speaking, total opposites. God has brought us together in such a way (knowing our personalities from before the womb), that we are like "iron sharpening iron" even in our mundane everyday lives. (Prov. 27:17) His thoughts and input are always for my good (even when I can't see it and want to do things 'MY' way), usually I find that it ends upthat his way is the better one!

In my relaxing hours this week, I watched a most interesting docu-movie/reality show that had been on PBS a while back. I got it at Netflix and it was called Frontier House.
The families were part of a living history experiment and went back to the Montana Territory as homesteaders in 1883. Boy, watching that really makes you appreciate our modern day conveniences! But, in another way, it was so sad...I watched a woman totally de-masculate her husband and raise herself up as head of the household. She did not realize what she was doing to him, I don't think, but you could see the pain in his eyes as she derided him in front of the children for all his shortcomings. Of course she was very capable and did have strong opinions...but she could have made her point in such a kinder and gentler way. The thing that hurt me most was she proclaimed to be a Christian...she just didn't see or understand the role a Christian woman has in the home and what it means to honor your husband. This show was so interesting to me as I saw the toll that modern life takes on the family. These people living in the 1880's needed to depend on one another to survive, they saw a reason and a purpose for living in unity and grew to respect the world that God created, and saw the harshness and the reality of living without. And yet, living without caused them to appreciate the little things we so easily take for granted in our day and age. When these families came back to the 21st century, they found that they missed the closeness, they missed the fulfillment that they had found in such things as chopping wood to keep the fire going that would heat the room and bake the bread...they missed the dependence that they had on one another and you could see them seeking to once more find purpose in their existence. The major thing that was left out of the docu-movie was anything spiritual or Biblical. I can't imagine going through something like that and not having God's Word to help me through it! Possibly these people did, but it was not shown at all. I would encourage anyone to watch it though as it is extremely interesting. I have ordered a similar one for this week called 1900 House. Can't wait to "experience" this family!

Sunday, July 1, 2007

In Memorium: Rocky....May, 1998-July 1, 2007

I can hardly believe I am writing the following......

Our dear beloved faithful and loving dog ROCKY has passed away this afternoon after succumbing to what we believe was a fatal snake bite last week, most probably a copperhead. He passed away in peace in one of his favorite spots ...beneath the van.

For the last couple of days, he had really taken a turn for the worse and yesterday he had stopped eating. Earlier this morning when Lamar got up to take his morning walk around the farm, he went out and couldn't find him right away...but upon further exploration, found him sitting out at the nursery under the giant oak tree...a place he could always be found as he would sit and vigilantly, patiently wait for Lamar as he would go about his daily nursery chores. But today, this morning was to be his last visit to the nursery. When Lamar was finished with chores, he called to him as he came up to the house, and Rocky obediently came...but, oh, so slowly...he was so weak. He had to stop midway to the house and rest. Lamar, in his compassion for his beloved friend, took a bucket of water to him and Rocky did take a last drink. From that point on, he haltingly managed to get to that favorite spot under the van on the cool concrete pad and then never moved from it again.

Rocky had such a personality! Whether it was going out and "helping" Lamar corral the cows, helping the cows eat their grain, chasing Junior down the driveway, giving me that sorrowful "look" that always meant, "Don't you think I 'need' a Meaty Bone?", he was one in a million, that's for sure. After being away from home, we would always be greeted with his own doggy voice that would "sing" and "moan" to us as we would get out of the car. He could go on forever like that if you would keep talking to him!He was SO HAPPY to see us and would "tell" us so in his own special way. Many times I would look out the kitchen window as I was doing dishes at the sink and see him sitting very alertly on the front lawn watching for Lamar to come home from town. At a certain point, his ear would cock and he'd stand up. He'd heard that familiar motor coming down the lane. When he'd see the truck, he would just be overjoyed and run along side out to the nursery to greet his favorite man and be his helper once again.......we will truly miss our dear, dear ole' boy...what a special friend you were.... We love you, Rocky.

Rocky showing Kevin all his love and attention !