Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Change Is In The Air

After all it is the last day of September and it's officially Autumn. Earlier this month the trees were beginning to change, the school year began for my grandchildren, and there has been a change in the air.

It was time to start thinking about a new season. Autumn is my favorite season. The pumpkins, broom corn and fall decorations are now out. There are a few specific "halloween" items around the house, but generally I like to stick with autumnal items that can stay in place till that next season begins.

There has been a crispness to the evening air that I just love!

Tuesday, September 29, 2009


Yesterday was a slow, recovery day. After some work on the computer and catching up with mail and news, I knew that there was so much I had to face in my workroom. I headed downstairs and started working.

There are samples to finish, but will start those later today. I have some personal things that I want to make and share while at the festival. Making a holder for my "badge" and business cards.

Embellishing a denim jacket from a resale shop. Planning on using ESF for dying a couple of tee shirts and then painting on at least one. Have some other ideas for the other tee!

First it's off to the dentist this morning than I need to mark and hem a dress for my daughter-in-law. It's for her sister's wedding in California next week-end.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Oh What A Night (and Day)

What a great celebration! So many things to say about this week-end and I hope to share as much as I can. I don't think Martha Stewart could have done better! After the traditional marriage ceremony at Holy Trinity Church the party was ready to begin.

As mentioned in the previous post about the rehearsal dinner, the wedding took place at Milldale Farm. This venue was beyond words!

The bride made over four hundred candles as part of the decorations. Friends and family saved all types of jars and soy candles were made. Table centerpieces were made from a slice of a downed tree, jars as a vase for red and orange gerber daisies with extra greens and bittersweet, handmade candles and natural oak leaves. These same elements were used throughout the barn for decorations everywhere.

The bride grew up in Kansas City, the groom near Chicago. Chicago is where they met, Chicago is were they live. They made gift bags for "out of town" guests that contained items from both cities.

Friends from Chicago entertained during the cocktail time. Later in the evening they arranged for someone to come and serve "Chicago-style" hot dogs to the guests.

So much went into this wonderfully, fun week-end wedding and we thank Suzanne & Anthony for providing everyone with many memories.

Friday, September 25, 2009

Wedding in Kansas

This week has taken us to Kansas
City, Kansas for a wedding. It was a long trip but it is proving to be well worth it. Today we helped with getting the some decorations done for the venue of the wedding reception.

Tonight was the rehearsal dinner. What a lovely evening. Tables were set up on a patio, just behind one of the buildings. It overlooked a pond and a rolling landscape. The food was "Kansas City Bar-B-Que" style.

It's been a non-stop two days, but so much fun! Photos are from the site of tonight's dinner before everyone arrived.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Relief! (well at least some)

Feeling some relief today. Two boxes of supplies and kits were mailed today. They are making their way to Houston, Texas. There still is much to do, but it will have to wait till next week.

Still waiting on some last minute supplies. I have been so fortunate to have had the help, from some wonderful companies and friends, in helping me offer interesting products to make the class projects unique and fun!

Looking for a clever, creative way to post a big "thank you" here on my blog to everyone!

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Busy, Busy, Busy

Too much to do! Taking a little break before readying classes kits and supplies for packing and then getting them off to Houston tomorrow. Some things will have to be packed in my suitcase when I travel to the Quilt Festival in a few weeks.

Also trying to pack for a trip to Kansas for another wedding this week-end. It should be fun though! The reception is going to take place in an old barn. Can't wait to share photos and stories about this celebration.

More to come...

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Altered Purses

Finished playing around with two old purses. One was an old one that I didn't use much any longer and the other was a resale shop find. The larger one can be seen in an earlier post. The smaller square purse was originally black and the larger one was terra cotta.

So the surface of each was just sponged with paint first, then some shimmers were added. A simple stencil pattern was added to both with another color of shimmers. Finally, simple embellishments were added to both. Used a metal shaped bow on the small one. Bound the handles with a variegated ribbon and added a tassel to the zipper pull.

In the photo the larger purse appears lighter than it actually is.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Week-End of Work

Making a quick, short post before heading down to my workroom for day one of a week-end long attempt to get everything in order for the classes at the International Quilt Festival. Must get as much done so packages can be shipped out on Wednesday.

I hope to have a chance to post photos later today, of two restyled purses that I have made to take along with. They gave me the chance to experiment with the products from Earth Safe Finishes.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

A Good Day to Bake

That basket of apples from the other day became two yummy "Apple Streusel Pies" today. It was another beautiful day, but cooler, making it a great day to bake.

A short time ago we enjoyed a slice of pie, topped with some vanilla ice cream, with the neighbors who visited the orchard with their family and picked them for us.

Recipe: Pillsbury Pie Crusts (Just so much easier than making your own.)
10 - 12 Medium Apples ( I use a variety)
1/4 Cup of Flour
1/2 Cup of Sugar
1 Tbsp. Cinnamon
2 tsp. Lemon Juice
Prepare crust according to package directions.
Core and peel apples. Slice. Layer the apples into the crust lined pie plate.
Sprinkle with the lemon juice, cinnamon, flour and sugar.
Streusel Topping
1/2 Cup of Butter or Margarine ( I use a 1/4 cup of each.)
1/2 Cup of Sugar
1/2 Cup of Brown Sugar
1 Cup of Flour
Use a pastry blender to cut the butter into the other ingredients.
Place the crumbs onto the top of the apple filled pie crust. Pat the
crumbs onto the apples. (Refer to the first photo.) Place on a cookie sheet.
Bake at 400 for 15 minutes, then reduce heat to 350 and bake an addition
35 - 45 minutes. Allow to cool. Enjoy! HINT: Add a slice of cheddar cheese on top and warm in the microwave for 10 seconds at 50% power.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009


The pressure is starting to build. Way too many things to be done in too short of a time frame. Now is when the coping mechanism will have to kick in. Jessica, where are you with your yoga instruction when I need it the most?

So lists are being made, if only I can follow them all. Found that writing list and leaving them on my laptop work better then lots of paper lists.

Things probably wouldn't be so bad, if I didn't have to get much of what I will be needing for the International Quilt Festival, shipped out by Wednesday of next week. That needs to happen also, because we leave on Thursday with family for a trip to Kansas City for another wedding.

So I'm getting a little stressed! Just about to leave to run some needed errands and then get back to continue tackling the variety of prep work.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009


Isn't that a beautiful basket of apples! Our neighbors went apple picking on Sunday with their family and brought us back a "peck of apples". Thank you Jackie & Matt!

Well I can't wait to make something yummy with them. The weather forecast for later in the week is cooling temperatures, even if it stays warm this week, I'm going to bake something. Can't decide if it should be a traditional apple pie, a favorite streusel topped apple pie, apple slices or apple fritters? Once I decide, I will share it with you, but only in photos!

Monday, September 14, 2009

Creating With Nature

A friend of mine has a beautiful yard that has specifically been designed to attract wildlife. She has trellis's made from twigs and branches, a rain barrel to collect the rain water, a waterfall fountain for that tranquil sound, art sculptures made from recycled items, feeders, and bird baths.

One of the projects that she shared with me is a bird bath, cast using found naturals. When she mentioned that she would be making another while up north this week, I wanted to try my hand at creating something too.

For my first attempt, I'm pretty happy. I used a variety of leaves from maples and birches, plus evergreen boughs and fern fronds. I would love to make another and try some other naturals in the casting. I like the rustic look of the basin. So I used a chisel and hammer to carefully break off the rounded edges. It will be placed on some rocks in the flower bed near the bird feeder for the birds to enjoy. When I finally get it in place I will post a photo.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Getting Back in the Groove

So after being away for five days with not much time to write blog posts, I'm hoping to get back into the groove starting today. The luggage is unpacked, laundry is done, things are almost completely put away. There are a few more emails to get off to people, both business and personal and a couple of other matters that were on "hold" while gone that need to be completed. My plan is to post again later today about a project that I made along with a friend on Thursday.

Friday, September 11, 2009

A Wedding

Celebrations are great to share and I felt I needed to share one from this week. A wedding took place this week on Wednesday. It seems like an odd thing to have a wedding in the middle of the week, but the date 9/9/09 had a special significance to the the bride. The location also was meaningful, besides beautiful.

We head home tomorrow from this place that has been a family tradition for 45 years, with the fourth generation of family now being a part of it. Thanks for letting me share a wonderful time and place.

Monday, September 7, 2009

Sewing Stuff

So I sat last night and put together a necklace with all that "sewing stuff" that was in the photo I posted the other day.

I have accumulated quite a variety of sewing items and wanted to see how best to use them. I could have easily added a few more things but decided that what I used was just enough. This project has been something I have wanted to make for some time.

Once I found out about teaching at the Houston International Quilt Festival, I knew that I had to get my act together and make some fun things to wear at the show. Stay tuned for some other wearable items that are being worked on for the show!

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Wedding in the Northwoods

We are heading back to Northern Wisconsin this week. One of our niece's will be getting married. It will definitely be a gorgeous setting for a wedding. I look forward to posting photos and comments about this special occasion.

Saturday, September 5, 2009

What Do You Make Of This?

What do you think I will make with the things in this photo? Take a guess!
Maybe by the end of next week I will be able to post a photo of what I did.

Friday, September 4, 2009

My Sunny Wish

Hope you have a sunny holiday! Yesterday (Friday), was the beginning of an extended holiday week-end. We have not made any specific plans for this Labor Day holiday. Depending on our children's schedule, hopefully we will find some time to get together and share some time.

On Tuesday it will be back to work for most and back to school. Summer is over!

Because of the holiday, I may take a little break from my blog, but then again I may not. If something interesting happens or get me thinking about something I would like to share, I will be adding a new post.


Teach Your Children Well

You must teach your children that the ground beneath their feet is the ashes of your grandfathers. So that they will respect the land, tell your children that the earth is rich with the lives of our kin. Teach your children what we have taught our children, that the earth is our mother. Whatever befalls the earth befalls the sons of the earth. If men spit upon the ground, they spit upon themselves. ~

Native American Wisdom

We must teach our children and grandchildren that they can make a difference. Any little thing they can do to help with saving "their" environment is a very good thing. Good habits start early so let's give them some easy ideas to live and be "green". Things that we have been hearing forever like: don't leave water running, turn off lights when you leave the room.

It starts at home ... begin taking your own bags to the stores, all stores. We have cut back almost completely on plastic bags by using our own bags when shopping.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Projects Everywhere

Some of the projects I have in the works are restyling some purses. One is a $2.00 purse found at a resale shop and the other is an old one that has been hanging around. It's been fun to use some great paints from Earth Safe Finishes to redo them. Great product and I am totally enjoying all the ways these paints can be used.

Beside the purses, I am restyling a denim jacket that was another find from a resale shop. Also, there are two T-shirts that are begging to be dyed and painted in some way.

Sitting on the other side of the room is a necklace waiting to be completed. All of these pieces will be taken with to Houston and worn while at the festival.

So this is one of the purses that is a work in progress. Before painting and after two layers of paint added. Now on to adding some other interesting things ... stay tuned!

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

My Own Little Corner

So I'm sitting down in my workspace looking at the various projects that I have started. Each of them are in different stages. I count at least a half dozen projects and that doesn't include all the prep work for classes kits for the quilt festival.

Now with this new camera and so many projects in the works I think I have a number of ideas for upcoming posts to my blog.

I'm going to start out with the corner that is called "the reference area". It's my own little library that really is one resource that I can refer to for answers or some inspiration.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Off Day

Well, not a very productive day for me personally. Much of the day was spent traveling to Great Lakes Naval Station and back. We don't have to do it very often, only when Gramma needs to have prescriptions filled. It's a trip ... considering where we start from, and the tollway for most of the trip is under serious construction.

It didn't turn out not to be a complete loss of time for me, since we were able to purchase a new digital camera while there. So after returning home late this afternoon most of the time was spent reading through the instructions and taking some practice photos and learning how this new camera works.

So hopefully tomorrow I will be able to incorporate a photo or two using the new camera and a little more interesting post to read.