Monday, April 30, 2012

Weekend visitor

We were blessed with a visit from Leo this past weekend.  He called on Friday and told me that he had a Saturday off.  It is one of his first ones in quite a while although when he got to work that afternoon they told him he had to work until 2:00 a.m. so he didn't get a lot of sleep.  He arrived about 1:00 and we just relaxed around the house for a while.  We decided to go to a late afternoon movie.  Bud wanted to see  Pirates, Band of Misfits so we all went along with his choice.  Nothing like a silly 3D movie.  It was silly and entertaining.  The other choices were The Three Stooges or the Five Year Engagement.  Bud did admit later that maybe the Five Year Engagement would have been better but we all enjoyed the movie we saw.  

Since we went to the 5:15 movie we had dinner waiting for us when we returned.  I put ribs in before we left and they were ready for us when we returned.  I also found some corn on the cob in the store so I added some potatoes and the corn to the ribs meal.  I have finally figured out that Leo really enjoys a home cooked meal when he comes to visit so I try to fix something instead of going out.  The meal was a success.  We relaxed after our late dinner and everyone went to bed happy.  I also made some dessert so that was our final treat.

Leo stayed until about 1:00 on Sunday.  He went home to do his laundry.  He is now switching to the day shift.  They have been trying this little 'experiment' of switching shifts every 2 months.  Nobody that is subject to the shift changes is happy but that often seems to be the goal of that little factory he works in, they don't ever seem to want the employees to be happy OR to consult them about what they want.

Bud went for his first Harley Group ride yesterday.   It was a little chilly here so he bundled up and went out for an afternoon ride with a group of 9 at the Harley Club.  I stayed home and did some sewing.

SO, as you can see we had a great weekend.  It is always great to have company and appreciate that Leo took the time to come and visit us.  I hope your weekend was fun too and maybe a little silly.

Friday, April 27, 2012

Busy week

I have been busy every day this past week.  I am usually not that busy so I am enjoying my whole day of doing just what I want to do although the list I made this morning included some tasks that I just needed to get done too.  
This past week I have been visiting a school just north of here to teach paper bead making to the art classes.  I volunteered with a friend to teach these classes for a local arts council.  A couple of years ago I did the same thing but we taught wool felting.  I enjoyed the classes.  We taught about 180 students (6 classes) and they seemed to enjoy the project.  I also did my usual volunteering out at Kingsley so I had my 'kid/teaching' time for the week.

 My flower garden is finally looking a little more like a flower garden.  The month of April is almost over so I am ready for those "May Flowers".  We are a little later than they are downstate and this is the first year for my flowers so I am hoping that they are doing well.  My hostas are just beginning to come up.  Eva's were much taller last weekend so I have 'hosta envy.  It has been cold and windy here this past week so maybe they are hoping for warmer weather before they come out. There was a little snow in the air yesterday afternoon in Kingsley or at least that is what the kids said.  The wind has been blowing really hard and the waves have been high on the bay this past week.  I think that Leo B. could go surfing here.  A wet suit would be required though.
Eva gave me this little garden bird when I was visiting her.  It looks great in my garden.

Well, I am off to work on another project for my quilt group.  I am making a 'charity' quilt for them with some of their donated fabric.  It is a simple one but I am trying to add a little personality to the simple blocks they gave me.

I hope you manage to add a little 'personality' to the world this weekend and have a day or two that are just for you.

Monday, April 23, 2012

Fun Weekend

I went away for the weekend.  I left on Thursday right after spending the afternoon in Kingsley for my usual volunteer day.  I arrived in Grand Rapids in time to have dinner with a room mate from college.  She and I went to Europe together in '77 so she was the one to get me hooked on traveling.  We had a nice dinner and a good chat, catching up on each others lives.  She has adopted 2 children from Russia and is a busy mother and a sometime writer.  
We had dinner at Eva's favorite Mexican restaurant, it is close to Sue's house too.  I am sure that we look just like we did in those days at CMU in the early 70s.  If you don't think so, just keep it to yourself.
 Friday morning my Coleman Cousins, Greta and Kay arrived in time for lunch.  I made vegetable soup and we began our weekend of catching up on each others lives.
 Jessica stopped by so I was able to get a group picture.  Once again, we look just the same as always.  Coleman sure must have something good in the water so that so many beautiful women managed to come from there.
 We took off for an afternoon of shopping.  It was a rainy and chilly day so inside activities were on the agenda.  Greta is looking for a sofa bed/futon for her new house.  One must try them out, at least that is what Eva said.

And of course, you must find out if 2 people would be able to sleep there.
 I think it is best for one person but it was comfortable to sit on.

After an afternoon of shopping and looking (mostly looking) we went to dinner and then home for more talking, laughing and sharing.  We finally gave in to sleep about midnight.
 Saturday was a nicer day with more sunshine.  It was still a little chilly but we decided that Meijer Gardens would be a great place to visit.  It was warm inside the tropical plant exhibit.  The butterflies were spectacular at the butterfly exhibit.

If you haven't ever had a chance to visit a butterfly exhibit, you should try some time.  They are flying all around you, landing on the flowers and looking very beautiful.  So many different kids of butterflies.  I loved the beauty of the butterflies and the flowers.
After the butterflies we went on a tram tour of the gardens.  It was colder outside but they gave us blankets to keep warm and we took in the beauty of the sculptures and the spring gardens.  Those gardens are a wonderful place to visit.

Kay and Greta went back home late in the day on Saturday.  I stayed another night with Eva.  We did a little more shopping and relaxing together in the evening.  I came home on Sunday.

So, you can see that I had a wonderful weekend with family and friends.  It is always a good thing to catch up with both family and friends, sharing memories of things in the past and renewing your bonds by making new memories.

Thursday, April 19, 2012

On the road

Just a quick posting today because I am leaving soon and need to run some errands before showing up at school for my afternoon of volunteering.  Right after school I am getting on the road to Grand Rapids for the weekend.  I am driving down tonight to have dinner with a college room mate.  I was going to put the adjective old in front of that but anyone that knows me must know that it must be an old room mate since it has been a LONG time since I was in college.  We are having dinner tonight and catching up.  I found her on Facebook and she is living in Grand Rapids.  
Tomorrow (Friday) the Coleman cousins, Kay and Greta are coming over to join Eva and me for the weekend.  Eva has a few things planned but I am sure there will be a lot of laughter and fun with the 4 of us.  We haven't had a weekend like this in a long time so it will be fun to catch up in a relaxed weekend setting without other things to distract us.  We usually see each other at family funerals or gatherings so this will be an extended visit for us.  The 4 of us grew up within a couple of miles of each other and spent a lot of our time together as children and teenagers.  I will take pictures and share some of our fun with you later.  
I thought I would post a picture of my latest quilt too.  I am working on this with my quilt group.  We bought the pattern and each did a block every month.  Then we would take it to our group meeting and show off our work.  I like this 'block of the month' plan.  Each person makes and keeps their own block.  I am making mine out of all batiks.  I love batiks and the different colors so this gave me an opportunity to buy more and explore different colors.  Each block is different with different colors.  I have 16 more of the large blocks to add to this center block.  It will be a big quilt but my feeling is if you go to the bother of making something, it should fit on a nice size bed.  

Well, that is my weekend plan.  Bud is staying home and working on getting his spring 'toys' ready for the road.  Spring is here and his motorcycle and sports car are still in the garage.  
I hope you have a great weekend, either doing chores or laughing with friends and family.

Monday, April 16, 2012

Mirror, mirror


Yesterday I decided to check out the back of my hair, I don't do that too often but for some reason I just decided to see how it looks back there. Maybe I was just trying to make sure that I don't have 'old lady hair'.  You all know what that is because you have been sitting behind some lovely woman in church and noticed that the back of her hair is flat.  Just like it was when she awoke this morning.  Anyway, I reached into my drawer and found my trusty OLD mirror.  It was pretty dusty so I decided to wipe it off on my jeans.  Isn't that how everyone cleans things????  The handle decided that it was time to 'give out' and on to the floor my mirror fell, cracking in several places. Now the back of my hair will continue to be unobserved and maybe flat.

I hope your backside isn't unobserved or flat.

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Poky Little Puppy finds a home

Friday I delivered a teddy bear and quilt to a former student.  She was a student in my early years of teaching and her mother also came on staff a couple of years after me so I have known the family for a long time.  I remember in my first year of teaching I was invited over to their house for dinner because her older brother was one of my students.  Anyway, she had her little precious baby in January after several disappointments and being over 40.  Little Wallace is a cute little one and I am sure that he will enjoy the Poky Little Puppy.  
 Momma, Grandma and baby all very happy.
Sorry this wasn't a very good picture but the quilt, baby, teddy bear and Momma look great together.
The circle of life.  The blessings of long friendships and the love of parents and family.  What more could you ask on a wonderful Friday afternoon.

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Cooking advice

It is always a good idea to make sure that you turn on the correct burner AND don't put a potholder on ANY burner.  Earlier this week Bud smelled something burning in the kitchen and I walked in to see a potholder up in smoke,  (thank goodness we have an electric stove not gas)  I had turned on the wrong burner and left my potholders on the burner that was on.  It was smoking quite a bit and the potholders are toast.

Today I smelled something again in the kitchen.  I went out to check the ground beef for my chili.  I realized that when I put the meat in the pot I forgot to check and remove that little pad that is in the bottom of the meat tray.  I was able to selvage the meat and we are still having chili for dinner.

SO, the lesson in all of this is, be more careful in MY kitchen.  You never know what you may find me cooking.   

Monday, April 9, 2012

Happy Easter

It was a quiet weekend here at our house.  Saturday Bud worked on our tax return and it is almost ready to go.  I did chores around the house, just the kind of day a retired person has every day.  I'm not complaining at all though.  It seems that my days are divided between projects that I want to do (usually a quilting project), reading my newest book, and then things I should do like cleaning or laundry.  I seem to manage to do the first two more often and maybe that is what retirement IS about.  
Saturday evening we sent to the movies.  We went to see The Hunger Games.  I have read all three books in that trilogy and this is the first movie.  We both enjoyed the movie, interesting topic and good books.  When I started reading them, (Matt and Diana gave the first one to me as a Christmas gift a couple of years ago) I was surprised about the topic and that I so quickly was engrossed in the story. I recommend the books and the movie if nothing else but for the thought provoking theme.   

I had invited Leo up for the weekend but he decided that he would stay home.  It was the first weekend in many weeks that he had 2 days off instead of just 1.  WELL, we decided that we just couldn't leave him alone and had to bother him so we called and made plans to drive down for dinner together. I had been wanting to go and visit my favorite Farwell quilt shop and I found out that it was open on this past Sunday so I began thinking about how I could combine the two needs and dinner together fit right in to my need.  We made it to the quilt shop and I did find the fabric that I was looking for to complete the next phase of this beautiful quilt that I am working on.  I had scoured the quilt shops up here and just couldn't find the right piece for the quilt.  They had what I needed.

We met at Leo's apartment after shopping and went to dinner in Clare.  Not your typical Easter Dinner but we were with family and that is important.
 I even managed to make Leo a little Easter basket.  I took one of my little baskets and filled it with some candy for him.  I was trying to keep with the holiday.
We bought Leo a new Harley shirt in Nashville when we were there visiting.  When Bud finds a Harley store he always goes to the sale rack to look for things to buy.

SO, you can see that we did have a nice weekend, just not the traditional Easter weekend that most people would have.  I hope your weekend was fun, entertaining and full of family.

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

The rest of the story


Sunday we went for a walk around a nearby lake.  It was about a 2 mile walk so it really was a good time to try and walk off some of those extra calories that we had consumed while visiting family.  
 Isn't she beautiful!!  A real movie star.
 Mom and Dad, they look pretty good for being the parents of three lovely and beautiful girls.
 Another beauty.
 Finally, the baby isn't such a baby anymore.
Dad has captured this one for a while anyway.

We had a great time with our two different families.  We have been doing this trip for MANY years and are always thankful that they let us come back.  It is a great way to keep in touch with both families and spend time together.

Travel pictures

My last entry was in N. Carolina.  I got a little busy and didn't post any more pictures so you will get a LOT of them on this posting.  Family, what can I say, they are the best.  
 On our last evening in N. Carolina Joseph fixed us dinner.  He planned it all, cooked it all and it was all terrific and a surprise to everyone except Lisa who helped him buy the groceries.  The BIG surprise was our dessert which was s'mores.  It was a great way to end our visit.
 The guys loved the fire and playing with the flames, not to mention the great s'mores.  Maybe I should send some roasting sticks though.  We had to use some old hangers to roast our marshmallows.
 The evening was rounded off with a couple of games.  Paul and Bud played a game of checkers on the board that Grandpa Warren made for the family.  I'm not sure who won this game.
 Joseph and I also played a couple of games.  I know that Joseph won every time.  We are not as competitive as Bud and Paul so it was a relaxing game for both of us.
 Wednesday we drove over to Nashville to spend a couple of nights.  Neither Bud nor I had ever spent any time in Nashville so we took a day and a half to explore.
 They have an exact replica of the Parathion which we thought was interesting since we saw the real one in Athens a few years ago.  This one was all restored.
 Thursday we went out to the Grand Ole Opry just to walk around.   There wasn't a show going on that afternoon but it was interesting to walk around.
 Everyone must get their picture taken in front of a giant guitar.
 Friday afternoon we drove on over to Lebanon  to see Matt, Diana and the girls.
 That evening we went out to a GREAT Mexican place to eat.  Bud said this was the best Mexican food he ever ate.
 Saturday we drove down to where Diana's father is pastor and joined in the Easter Egg Hunt.  Well, the kids did, us adults just stood around and watched and posed for pictures.

 Ready to go?????
 Peeps are the best.  She even shared them with me.
 Too much candy????
 I ate the ears!!!!!
 After the Easter Egg Hunt we went to lunch and then to the movies.  Everyone wanted to see the new movie, "Mirror, Mirror".  It was a great movie to see with kids.  The adults loved it too.
Then we used Bud's iPhone to find the best place to buy cheesecake so that we could have an early birthday   celebration for Diana.  This bakery was a great find for everyone.  We left with a great cheesecake and some fantastic cookies for Easter.
 At home we decided to make a Birthday Banner for the evening's celebration.  Diana was inside working on dinner (she had to make her own birthday dinner) so the girls and I were busy on the banner.
A little later a great game of volleyball used up a little energy.  Anything to wear out those kids.  They have a lot of energy.
 The birthday banner turned out great.
 Mom and her girls.  Momma is pretty happy, surrounded by such wonderful girls.
 AND, of course the cheesecake.  It was terrific.  We will need to remember this bakery for future use.
Sunday we went for a walk,  We needed to walk off that cheesecake.
I have run out of room on this posting so go on to the next one for the rest of the story.