Friday, April 29, 2011

quilt blocks and travel plans

Well, I have been working on that quilt even though the sun is shining outside.  I wanted to get a few blocks together before I leave today so I could take them with me and get a feel for the quilt.  I would like to buy the border and backing today if possible. 

I am heading down to Clare and then Coleman on this beautiful spring day.  I think it will be a wonderful drive.  I hope the woods look like spring is arriving.  I have some good music and NPR on my radio.  I am going to put a For Sale By Owner sign on the property that we have left of the farm.  I will try that tactic for a few months before hiring a real estate agent.  I am also going to put a spring arrangement on the grave site at the cemetery.  I will take a picture of the WWII memorial in Coleman too.  SO,  a busy day for this slow paced woman.  More pictures of my adventures and Leo too tomorrow.  Maybe I will find some morel mushrooms.  That would be a bonus. 

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Rainy Day Project

Today is a perfect day to start a new project.  It is raining outside my window.  April Showers bring May Flowers so I am hoping that little saying comes true and just enjoying the sound of the rain, waiting for the flowers to appear in the woods behind our house.

 I collected this group of fabrics (it is called a 'stash' in the quilting world) and decided I will put them to work for me.  One of my former school team mates is getting married this summer and I have been advised that this color scheme will fit into the home.
I was at a fabric store the other day and found this pattern for a table runner.  I liked the pattern so much and decided that I could just make more blocks and turn it into a full size quilt.  SO, the above fabric will go into this project.  Of course I did have to buy a few extra pieces to fill in my colors and I still want to find a gold color to add to my stash fabrics but I think it will look great.  I will let you know how it turns out. 

Anyway, the rain, a new project, and a book.  It takes so little to keep me occupied in my retirement but I do enjoy the freedom.  I hope you find some simple pleasures in your day. 

Monday, April 25, 2011

Weekend sewing project

This is my latest project.  I made this little baby doll and carrier for Jessica when she was little.  I saved the pattern and decided to make it for Brookelynn's upcoming birthday.  WELL, I can see why I waited so long to make it again.  It was a 'project'.  I still haven't put the face on the baby doll but wanted to be finished for now.  It is cute but a lot more work than I had anticipated.  I did follow the pattern but it didn't have any way to make the sides of the carrier stiff.  I remember that problem with the one I made for Jessica and I think I put something really stiff in it to hold it up.  I found something a bit softer for this one but just didn't have good luck figuring how to put it in the carrier.  SO, I have decided that I may just continue to make quilts for the 'grand nieces and nephews' like I did for Amy's children.  The quilts may take longer but cause a few less headaches. 

Wednesday, April 20, 2011


 Last night about 8:00
 This morning about 8:00
This morning as Bud heads out to work.  The driveway is now full of snow again.

It is hard to believe that today is the 20th of April when you look out our windows.  The weather forecast was true.  We did receive about 6 inches of snow last night and this morning.  It is really wet snow so it is compressing as the day goes on but it is still snow.  All of our snow had melted and now we have it back. 

SO, today I am just relaxing inside the house, not because I can't get out.  The snow is melting and the roads are fine.  I am 'stuck' inside this house with a VERY GOOD new book (Ape House by Sara Gruen who also wrote Water for Elephants) and a NEW QUILT.  I am rationing my time between my sewing room and my reading chair.  Life is good.
Bud took this picture on his phone when he left for work this morning. 
Glen sent this picture to me this afternoon.  I am always accusing him of sending his snow my way.  You can see that this is true.  He was out plowing this morning.  He called it his 'view from his desk'.  It sure looks like the snow we got too.  Thanks Glen!!!  Next time keep it.  We have had enough.

Monday, April 18, 2011

Monday's musings

It was a quiet week here in N. Michigan.  YES, we did have snow.  We noticed it when we left the movies on Saturday evening.  It was blowing in the air.  A light dusting greeted us in the  morning, only enough to catch in the ground cover and rest a little on the roof but it still was snow and along with it cold weather.  The wind howled all weekend. It seems to have blown through and left blue skies behind it but it is still cold.  The trees have not yet shown any signs of little green buds. 

We went to the movie as stated earlier.  We saw the new movie produced by Robert Redford.  It is about the conspiracy that developed after the Civil War which resulted in the assassination of Lincoln.  The story was about a woman that was tried and hung as a conspirator with John Wilks Booth.  I must admit that it brought up some interesting issues.  I thought it was a good movie and would recommend it.  I think it was called The Conspiracy. 

I am rereading Water For Elephants.  There is a new movie coming out soon and I read the book many years ago.  I wanted to refresh my memory of the details.  It is a GREAT book and I am hoping the movie is good too. 

I also started a new quilt.  I have been collecting fabrics for this quilt for quite a while and finally decided on the pattern to use with the fabrics.  I think I will like it.  It may be a gift for someone that is retiring, if I get it done on time.  I also have a wedding gift to make for late July.  I need to keep that sewing machine working pretty hard the next couple of months. 

I talked to Leo earlier this weekend.  He is working hard too.  He has been working 7 days a week for a while.  He did say he went down to his 10 acres and was working on getting his various tractors and mowers starting after a long winter.  That has been keeping him busy in the afternoon.  I will get down there before I go to Paris and make sure that there are flowers on Mom and Dad's graves.  It gives me a reason to visit Leo and go to one of my favorite quilt stores. 

Today I filled my gas tank.  It was on empty so I really had to put a LOT of money in that tank.  I don't think I have ever spent that much money on gas before.  I guess we better get accustomed to it though.  I don't drive very far so that is probably the first gas I have put in this month.  I feel sorry for those of you that must drive a great distance to work every day.  It is an extra expense that has hit the wallet. 

Enough musings for one day.  I am back to the quilt and book.  Enjoy the sunshine. 

Wednesday, April 13, 2011


YES,YES, spring is making an attempt to take over our beautiful N. Michigan.  Sunday Bud spread the last pile of snow that had accumulated where the plow had piled it up for the winter.  It has finally melted and I am seeing a few little signs of spring in the woods behind us.  I hope you are finding great spring weather where you are.  It is a time of renewal and new beauty after the long winter. 

Sunday, April 10, 2011

NEeMA - Masi (a message of peace)

Last night  we were blessed to have the experience of a wonderful singer right here in our own town of Traverse City.  We have a lovely old Opera House right downtown and there are often small intimate concerts available.  Bud and I saw this concert advertised and decided to go.  The main singer was a man named Jessee Winchester who did a wonderful funny show for us.  We really enjoyed his show.  HOWEVER, there was this fantastic 'warm-up' singer that I just loved.     I felt a need to share this music with you now that I have learned how to post things from YouTube on my blog.  I hope you like this clip and find more of her music.  I did buy 2 of her CDs and know I will enjoy listening to her. 

She is a very interesting individual.  She is from Montreal and is of Egyptian and Lebanese decent.  She also spent a year with the people of the First Nation in Northern Canada.  I met her when I bought her CDs and she left a very special impression with me through her presence and her music.  I also felt Sara's presence with me while listening to her music.  Enjoy this little clip and find more of her music. 

Friday, April 8, 2011

Keeping in touch with family

Glen told me one time that Myria has decided that I am the one that is taking Mom's place by keeping the family in touch with what is going on with each other.  I hadn't thought too much about that but I don't mind the task.  I decided to pass on a couple of pictures that I received this past week. 

 This is Garrick with a friend of his.  They are ready to go to the fair.  Josh sent the picture to me a week or so ago.  He sure looks like Josh and he is getting to be quite bit.  I thought you would all enjoy an updated picture of him.  I hope to meet him soon.
Glen and Penny are in Hawaii on vacation.  This is one of the pictures that Glen sent me this past week.  It is a beautiful view.  They were going to rent Harleys and do a little riding.  I hope they are having fun.

I hope you all have a great weekend.  I am heading down to Kingsley this afternoon to help Molly.  It is still a weekly event for me and I enjoy it a lot.  She is always in need of extra hands and I love helping her.  She is a busy mother and teacher so she is always thankful for what ever I do for her. 

Spring continues to TRY to invade our cold spaces but we still have a pile of snow in the driveway.  It needs to be spread out so that it will melt.  Maybe that will happen this weekend. 

I hope you all have a great weekend and get a chance to enjoy the spring somewhere. 

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Our time in Tennessee

We spent last weekend in Tennessee with Matt, Diana and the girls. 
 Brookelynn has learned to do the hola-hoop.  In case you can't see, it is spinning in the picture. She is really good at keeping it going.  None of us adults could keep it spinning. 
 Matt and Diana loved their new quilt.  Matt put up the curtain rods so the whole bedroom had been transformed this weekend. 
 Gram enjoyed reading to her grandchildren many times.
 Matt blessed us with cinnamon rolls that were better than my mom's rolls because he has perfected the recipe. 
 We went hiking on Saturday.  It was a nice hike around a small lake.
 Brookelynn and Bud enjoyed a rest. 

 Saturday afternoon the girls went to Home Goods.  Eva and Diana shopped for various household items.  Brookelynn and Aunt Della tried out every chair in the place, pretending to have tea or a picnic in the park.
 Sunday meant church and the girls were all dressed up for the occasion.  Annika is wearing her new dress and Brookelynn is wearing a dress passed down from one of her sisters. 
 Sunday afternoon we went bowling.  Aunt Della won the first game and Uncle Bud won the second game. 
 It was Brookelynn's first bowling experience (she was also the one who insisted that we try bowling).  It is harder than the Wii bowling.  That ball was pretty heavy.  Eventually we got the ramp for her to use. 
 Of course, the girls did their nails. 
 Gram read more stories.
AND, Annika is raising chicks.  She had over 20 chicks in a box that she is raising for 4H.  They were cute.

As you can see, we all had a great time. 

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Back home

We made it back home about 8:00 last night.  It was a long drive from Lebanon, TN but we just keep on driving without stopping very much.  I will post pictures from that portion of the trip later.  Right now I am trying to clean up the mess we created by walking in and dropping everything.  It is laundry day for me too but I am also going to lunch with a friend.  I must have my priorities.  We traveled from wonderful spring weather through a rainstorm and back to the cold northland.  We still have snow on the ground and there was a light dusting on the driveway after we arrived home, such is the spring here in N. Michigan. 
It was a great trip, filled with fun and family.  I am thankful for such a nice family and their welcoming homes.  I am off to do chores but will be back soon to post some pictures.I just couldn't resist this one picture since it was a nice picture of spring in TN. 

Friday, April 1, 2011

National Naval Aviation Museum in Pensacola

Yesterday morning we visited the National Naval Aviation Museum in Pensacola.  I wasn't too excited about the visit but it was something Bud wanted to do so I just went along for the heck of it.  It turned out to be very interesting and I am glad that we went.  Maybe a lesson for me to try things even though they don't sound so appealing at first.  We took a guided tour and the guide was very well informed, had good stories and made the visit very interesting. 
 This is the kind of plane that Warren, Bud's father, flew when he was in the Navy at the end of WWII.  
 Here is Bud listening intently to our guide.  If you click on the picture you can see he is wearing his Harley shirt that Leo and Josh got him from Texas.  He is getting quite a collection of Harley shirts.

No, we didn't get a ride in a Blue Angels plane but I thought these pictures were good. 
We are having a good time. After the museum we headed north through Alabama and on our way to Tennessee where we will be on Friday.  We will spend the weekend with Matt, Diana and the girls.  We are looking forward to seeing them. We haven't seen them since Christmas.  I hope you have a good weekend too.