Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Busier than a cranberry merchant

That's what my Great-Grandma Clyta used to say -- that she was "busier than a cranberry merchant", and I'd guess that just about sums it up perfectly for me these days. With that being said, I'm taking off a few days of blogging to get caught up on life, have a little bit o' fun, and bask in the summertime. I'll be back with some good blog posts for you at the beginning of next week.

Catch you later...

Thursday, June 25, 2009

A thrifty Thursday

After quilting this morning at church with my ladies, I ran by the thrift store. I only do this once in a blue moon, mainly because that's about as often as I remember to go, and also because it's more fun without the four-year-old in tow. I rarely have luck in any department but the books, and sure enough, today was no exception. But I'm pretty excited about three of my finds!

Here is the first, for $2.50:

(image via Amazon)

The 20th Century Children's Book Treasury is in tip-top condition, a hardcover copy with a book jacket. It is chock full of great kids' stories, including stories such as Madeline, The Snowy Day, Make Way for Ducklings, Where the Wild Things Are, Mike Mulligan and His Steam Shovel, Bedtime for Frances, The Story of Babar, Stellaluna, Harry the Dirty Dog, and many, many more (44 total). What a great find! Most of these stories are not already in our little library I've been building in my son's room, so I'm excited to start reading through this one at bedtime each night. Brand new this one sells for $26 on Amazon!

Here is the second, for $1.50:

(image via Amazon)

The Children's Book of Virtues, also is in tip-top condition, and a hardcover copy with a book jacket as well. I found the regular version, Book of Virtues, last year at the library on the book sale cart for $1. It is huge -- 831 pages -- and full of poems, quotations, and stories. Growing up I went on lots of little road trips with my grandmother, mom, and aunts, and they were always reading poetry, stories, and such in the car to pass the time, and that's something I'd like to continue with my own family (I can already hear my husband groaning, haha). It's a beautiful book, so I knew the children's version would be special, too. The illustrations alone in this children's version are gorgeous and great for the imagination, and I'm excited to read through this one at bedtime with the little guy as well. Brand new at Amazon this one goes for over $18.

And lastly, I picked up a brand-new copy of Book 3 of the Harry Potter series for $2.75. It still had the Border's sticker on the back for $19.99. I got really into the whole Harry Potter movement after Book 4, so my Books 5-7 are all brand-new hardcover versions (most of which were delivered straight to my door because I was one of the nerds that pre-ordered my copies). Of course, I wanted to pick up the others in hardcover to match, but not for $20 each and up. I was able to score Book 2 on Paperback Swap, Book 1 at a used book store, and now I only need to replace Book 4, and my little collection will be complete.

Ah, I think I'll sit back now and bask in my nerdiness...

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Dreams do come true.

Oh yes, folks, dreams really do come true.

In case you haven't heard me say it before, sometimes I feel like I live in a TV sitcom. My sitcom would be a cross between "Everybody Loves Raymond" and "Home Improvement", as I feel my husband is a mix of Tim Allen and Ray Romano. You never know what he's going to do next, and he definitely knows how to keep life lively and me on my toes.

Today was no exception.

After months of gentle reminders (I refuse to use the word "nagging" since I did my absolute best not to gripe and whine, but rather maintain constant gentle reminders), my husband finally drove over to the closest tag agency to get license plate renewal stickers. Actually, in our case, it meant getting all new license plates since our state changed the design last year. While there, he sent me a short text message: "I'm going to be on the news."


When he came home, he proudly announced that he was interviewed by one of our city's news stations. Apparently they were doing a report on how the late fees for renewing tags are dramatically rising from $25 to $100. I had no idea of this rate hike when I asked him (yet again) this morning to go get them taken care of. The reporter basically questioned him about his opinion on all of this. Of course, the first thought in my head was, "Great. Now the whole city is going to know that we were late on paying our tag renewals". Leave it to my husband to declare this to the whole city.

But no. He redeemed himself.

He redeemed himself in a mighty way, people.

On the six o'clock news tonight in our little city, my husband could be seen telling the reporter:
"I'm relieved I listened to my wife, who is usually right."

Oh yeah. It's not only printed on the world wide web that my husband thinks I'm "usually right", haha, but it's also on video!

I just knew there was a fairy godmother out there somewhere...

***Update: the TV station has now loaded the video segment to their website, which means there is not only written proof of who is right, but there is video for the whole world-wide-web to see. Mwahahahahahahahahaha...

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

The Secret Sister Strikes Again!

You know it's bound to be a good day, no, a great day when this little surprise shows up on your doorstep:

Holly Hobbie!!!!!!

We had to fill out a questionaire before this whole Secret Sister thing got started, so my Secret Sister had a few ideas of things I like. What she didn't know, however, is that I had a whole bedroom full of Holly Hobbie stuff when I was little. My very first big girl bed was a full size bed with a canopy. Yep, back in the day, we went straight from cribs to regular twins or fulls -- no toddler beds. (That explains a lot, doesn't it, that most of us probably fell out of our beds and bonked our heads as small children. Yep, explains a lot about my brain, at least, haha!)


my room was completely done up in Holly Hobbie finery -- the sheets, the bedspread (do people still buy bedspreads as opposed to comforters or duvets?), the canopy (oh yeah, baby, early 1980's at it's finest), and I even had a Holly Hobbie play kitchen in the corner of my room. Basically it looked like Holly Hobbie threw up in there, and I loved it! I think I might still have one of my favorite Holly Hobbie picture books at my mom's house. Those illustrations were so sweet and homey -- I'd be surprised if they didn't get popular again soon, especially in the crafting world. I think I might have even had a Holly Hobbie lunchbox at one time, but it wasn't this exact one, and I'll have to ask my mom if she remembers what lunchbox I had.

And what's even funnier about it is that I passed on my love of Holly Hobbie to my son in a strange little way. Have you seen that cartoon on TV, "Toot and Puddle"? Absolutely ridiculously adorable. We actually were a big fan of the Toot and Puddle books before the cartoon appeared on Noggin, but now my son is a big fan of the show. Well, Toot and Puddle is by none other than Holly Hobbie! Which explains the cuteness, of course. And did you know that Holly Hobbie is actually the creator's name? I guess she named the girl after herself.

Here are some pictures of all the other sides. It is covered with Holly Hobbie goodness!

But oh my goodness, the fun does not stop there. Open the lunchbox and you'll find another fun surprise! (Just for the record, I would have been over-the-moon gaga over the lunchbox alone. No second surprise needed!)

A darling Anthropologie dishtowel!

Now friends, you know that I love me some Anthropologie. It's no secret. But I do know that Anthropologie tends to be on the pricier side of things, and when I spend money there, it's usually quite well thought out and with money I have saved up especially for that reason. To know that someone actually placed an order specifically to get me that dishtowel, I truly truly appreciate it. Things like that are beyond generous, and I absolutely am grateful for all the thought and effort that went into this whole surprise.

Man, this Secret Sister thing is spoiling me terribly. I told you I had a great group of Bunko friends. And it's not the gifts themselves or the money spent that make this such a neat experience -- it's the amazing and true friendships I have gained from this group. It's just icing on the cake, the fact that someone is taking the time and effort to surprise me every once in a while and totally make my day. As adults, we just don't seem to get those fun little surprises that often, and it is so special when we do.

All together now: Awwwwwwwwwwwwwwwww.

Monday, June 22, 2009

Just the little things floating around in my head

I just ate my last Cadbury egg. Not kidding. And in case you were wondering, they still taste just as delicious, if not more so, in June.


Lately the boy has been into two things: whether or not certain foods make you "skong" (strong) and words that rhyme. For instance, today he was talking at the dinner table and out of the blue, exclaimed, "Cheese and pease (please) rhyme!" as if he had just discovered The New World. Of course, we showered him with praise, and after a few minutes, he declared, "Butt and food rhyme!"

{Insert horrible record scratching sound here.}

Um, say again?

Unfortunately we had to break it to him that the words "butt" (which, by the way, is not thrown around a lot in our household) and "food" do not, in fact, rhyme. Try saying all that with a straight face.


And for what it's worth, I think Jon and Kate are both cowards. At the most, the announcement should have been that they were separating, leaving the show, and seeking marriage counseling to try and pull their family back together. I don't really think that announcing a divorce and continuing on with the season shows good judgment or good parenting. I'm not taking away from the fact that, yes, they obviously had some problems. Anyone could see that. But anyone who is married knows that marriage is a lot of work, and letting the media and the rest of the world in on your business and all that entails isn't exactly the way to try and build it back up. I personally think they were both fools to allow the show to continue as long as it has. There had to have been a point somewhere in there that it would have been wise for them to take a step back, stand up for their marriage and their kids, get themselves out of the spotlight, and at least try to fix things in private. You know, there was speculation by the media on both parts about affairs -- him with the younger women, her with her bodyguard -- but the truth is, they both had an affair when you think about it. They allowed a third party into their marriage: the media and the rest of the world. Major mistake. And yet a major mistake that they could still fix. Hello, Earth to Jon and Kate -- GET OFF THE SHOW! RUN WHILE YOU STILL CAN! I've only watched the show occasionally, but I've seen enough on the news to keep me up-to-date. It just makes me sad. Sad for them, and sad for their kids.

Sorry to get up on my soapbox, but hey, it's my blog.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

God has a sense of humor.

You want to know how I know that God has a sense of humor?

It's pretty easy, really.

He created four-year-old little boys. And He allows life to imitate a bad comedy movie sometimes.

See? I know these things.

I have a small tale to tell. A tale of 24 hours. And it started yesterday.

Yesterday started out great, actually. Since I have been on a big sewing kick, I one-upped myself and got to work on yet another Wee Wonderfuls "Olive" doll. Remember, "Esperanza" was the first doll I made, merely weeks ago, so I figured it might be easier the second time around. And I was right!

This little gal came together in a matter of a couple hours or less. We had a three-year-old birthday girl in need of a present, and since I already had most of the materials needed in my stash, I knew exactly what to make. It is a very fun project to sew, once you master all of the tricky parts.

Isn't she cute? I am convinced that these little dolls are the cutest ever. I know that still more will be in my future.

After sewing her up, I rewarded myself with a refreshing dip in the pool. It was nasty hot yesterday (again), and that water felt sooooooo good. I even unwrapped my son's splint and stuck him in on the steps in a life jacket so he could at least cool off as well. (To bring you up to speed, the four-year-old broke his elbow last day of preschool, had surgery to set it with pins the Friday of Memorial Day weekend, his arm spent a week and a half in a sling followed by two weeks in a cast, and we just got the cast off and pins out last Monday and have one more week to go in a removable splint. This past week was glorious being able to finally throw him in a bubble bath again!)

Needless to say, life was good and about to get even better!

My husband took the four-year-old and the adorable birthday doll to the party while I got gussied up for another fun evening with my mom. We hopped in the car, took a little drive to a neighboring big town (small city, whatever you want to call it), and spent the most fantastic evening with this lady...

...oh, and maybe about 1,698 other folks that I couldn't make go away.

Remember back in April I got to meet her up close and personal at a book signing in our little city. She's the cutest little thing in person -- the nicest, nicest, nicest celebrity you could hope to meet. (It's just too bad she doesn't realize that we were meant to be lifelong best friends. Sigh...) And it's rare to get to see her in concert, but being she is a hometown girl 'round these parts, we were lucky enough to get to have her home (or almost home) for a concert.

And oh, what a concert! I was a teensy bit afraid it wouldn't live up to my expectations -- for one thing, it was the grand finale concert of a big international Mozart festival. (And ya'll thought I just lived in the midst of a bunch of cowtowns. There may be a few cowtowns here, but we got culture, yes we do!)

Oh yes, I was very afraid it would be a good chunk of classical music repertoire. Not that I'm afraid of classical -- I quite enjoy it actually, thanks very much in part to my music degree. But I didn't exactly care to sit through a classical music concert last night, so I was pleasantly surprised when it was only about 5% classical, and the classical that did sneak its way in was peppered heavily with humor. Did I mention she is oh-so-stinkin'-hilarious? She is. She could easily quit her day job and go into comedy.

Anyway, back to what I was saying -- the concert was 100% sheer delight. Funny, amazing, entertaining, you name it. I didn't want to leave, especially knowing that we truly were meant to be BFF's forever, and she still had no idea (poor girl), but alas, it was 10:30pm when the concert let out and we still had to drive home quite a ways.

This is where the "dramedy" starts...

I climbed into bed around 11:30, I believe, a bit later than normal for this gal. Of course, I was hyped up from the concert and all of the daydreaming it was creating in my head, all the "what if's" it had stirred up regarding me and my long-lost dream of moving to NYC to become an accompanist for all the big Broadway stars. (But that's a whole other post for another day...)

I had just fallen asleep when the phone rang at 11:45 (never a good thing). It was my mom, in a panic because her diamond bracelet was no longer on her arm. I don't know if you ladies have ever lost a piece of jewelry, but that is one of the worst losses to try and retrace your steps because those things can slip off your arm or hand or whatever usually quite unnoticed. My mom does not own very many pieces of expensive jewelry (neither do I), and this particular piece was of great value both monetarily and personally. I've lost an important item or two in my life, and I know firsthand just how sick you feel once you realize it is gone. I got out of bed, put on my shoes, grabbed a flashlight, and went over every square inch of the car looking for it. I also walked up and down my long driveway and on the street in front of our house, in my pajamas no less, hoping for a glimpse of it that way, but to no avail. Of course then I was hyped up again from feeling terrible for my mom and trying to wrack my brain as well, thinking of where or when it could have fallen off her wrist. Regardless, there wasn't much I could do that I hadn't already done at that point, so I climbed back into bed and fell back asleep...

...until about 12:45am or so, when I heard screaming from down the hall. Oh yes, it seemed the boy was probably having a bad dream or something, so I drug myself up out of bed, plodded down the hallway, and into his room. For the blood-curdling screams that he was emitting, he sure looked fine to me. I asked him what was wrong, and he sobbed, "My finger is dirty!"

Um, what?

Sure enough I had just begun to investigate the little finger and was quite confused that his fingernail bed was awfully white, when a little deja vu moment hit me, my sleepy eyes were able to refocus, and I looked around the room to find it completely covered in baby powder. Once again. Oh yes, "once again" since this was the second time our child pulled this very stunt, the first time being at least two years ago. It was almost as if he wanted me to find out in his weird little way.

Ugh, I was mad. Rootin' tootin' mad. I mean, come on, four-year-old little boys (at least in this household) definitely know better than to be sprinkling and shaking their cares away with the baby powder late at night. I took away his "light privileges" (among other things) -- he's worked his way up to more than one light on in the room at night sometimes when he is more scared, but he lost 'em fast last night since he obviously had been using the extra lights to his advantage. Back down the hallway I went, crawled back into bed and fell asleep...

...only to be woken up yet again from more blood-curdling screaming about an hour later (maybe 1:45-ish, or 2?). Back down the hallway I plodded to find my child sitting up, calmly asking me, "Mama, I want the light on?". Obviously the dramatic blood-curdling screams were not really a good indication of his true, calm demeanor and were just a tool to rouse his poor mama out of bed and down the hallway. Grrrrrrrr. Being the good mama that I am, I didn't even respond (knowing full well that any response from me at that point would not have been good in the least), but simply closed the door on his once again screaming little body and crawled back into bed, doing my darndest to ignore the wailing from down the hall that had started back up...

...only to wake up to my husband yelling something incomprehensible in his sleep (I'm guessing it was maybe 2:30 or 2:45). That man has the most adventurous dreams sometimes. I pulled my pillow over my head, fell back asleep...

...only to wake up yet again to some foul smells in the room. Seems last night was a good one for our dog and the wind she was breaking in her sleep...

...so at 3:30 or 4am (I don't even know exactly what time it was), I grabbed my pillow, stomped across the hallway to the guest room, shut the door, stepped in a dish of cat food that my husband had left in there on the floor (???), had to go back in the hallway, take the dish to the kitchen, wipe my foot off, and finally, finally crashed on the bed (no sheets, they were in the wash) on the plain old mattress with a quilt and fell asleep, probably sometime around 4 or 4:30...

...until my alarm went off at 6:45.

Which I promptly turned off.

Which explains why I didn't go to church this morning.

I sure hope Jesus will understand.

And I sure do know that God has a sense of humor. Because it was just one of those chain of events that by the fourth or fifth time I was roused out of bed I was laughing a little (well, more like that sick sort of laughing one does when one can't comprehend the ridiculousness of it all). Of course, this morning, I wasn't laughing so much at the very few hours of sleep I ended up getting, and I wasn't laughing so much at the missing bracelet and how terrible I feel for my mom...

...but it is all very much real life, regardless, and you gotta take the good with the bad, and realize that Emily Dickinson had it right: "That it will never come again is what makes life so sweet." And then relish in the fact that one of these days, reading back over all these stories of the crazy days, the crazy nights, the crazy stunts my four-year-old pulls, the hardships, the joys -- that is all what life is made of!

Friday, June 19, 2009

Vintage Photo Friday

Talk about hittin' the motherload. Today I was digging through the big box of photos I got from my parents' house -- the photos from my dad's side of the family. An only child, he passed away four years ago, but thankfully some of these pictures had been written on by his mother, so I have a decent idea who everyone is in most of them. I found a stockpile of early photos from my grandmother's childhood and from her parents' lives as well, several dating back to the later 1800's. And in that pile I found eight handwritten pages written by my great-grandfather regarding "The End of the Dalton Gang at Coffeyville, Kansas, October 5, 1892".

Seriously?! How cool is that? A personal tale about an up-close and dangerous experience with the infamous outlaws, Grat, Bob and Emmett Dalton and Bill and Jess Powers in good ol' Indian Territory. Get this -- when I looked at the article on Wikipedia about the Dalton Gang, that exact day was written about on the website. It's a little bit hard to read the writing on these pages, but from what I skimmed already I found out my grandfather was about 14 years old when the big shootout happened and was in a nearby town, but I guess he became interested in it as an adult and found a "full blood Indian" who was there to share the tale with him and then he wrote it all down.

So be on the lookout for a post from me in the near future when I type out the contents of the letter. He even signed his name at the end of the letter with his address and his Cherokee roll number and card number. Now that's the real Wild, Wild West, for ya'!

Anyway, on to the vintage photos for today. In the spirit of James Orville Stewart (my great-grandfather), here are some photos of him and his family. The majority of the photos were taken in Indian Territory. As always, click on them for a closer look...

This one was sometime around the turn of the century, I'm guessing. He was the 4th one in from the left.

This one, I am guessing, was sometime in the 1910's or early 1920's. James and his family -- his wife, Maud (or Maude, I'm not sure if it was with or without an "e" at the end), and my grandmother and children. My grandmother is the one on the left.

I'm not sure who all is in the picture here, but again, this was probably in the 1910's or 1920's, more than likely above the family farm. Seems like there were lots of family pictures taken at this particular rock outcropping. My grandmother is at the top, and I believe James is the man sitting down in the very front. Or else it's just a whole bunch of people I don't know. Haha.

My best guess for this one would be the 1940's or 1950's. I like how James looks in these two. And who doesn't love photobooths? Er, at least I'm assuming this was from a photobooth...

This one's probably a turn of the century one again, a picture of James on his farm. And I have no idea which one is James.

One more family picture up in the rocks -- my grandmother is on the left. She seems to be on the left a lot. Maybe that's where they always made her stand?

Just because...

...there might be a little Kristin Chenoweth in my weekend plans...



Frozen grapes. Oh, one of the many joys of summer! My son tried his first frozen grapes this morning, and he is head over heels with the "tiny popsicles". If you have never had frozen grapes, you'd best hurry to make some! Just wash them all off, pick them off the stems, dry them off, throw them in a Ziploc bag into the freezer, and voila! Frozen grapes.

(I know, I know, I'm the next Rachael Ray and Martha Stewart. Try not to be jealous...)


Last night my mom took me to a super-cool event in our little city called "Top of the Town". It was a very spontaneous move since she had just bought the tickets earlier that day. Let me just say, what a great idea for a fundraiser! It was $25 a ticket, but you got to go up in several of the "skyscrapers" downtown (20+ stories is a skyscraper 'round these parts) and take in the view. There were several buildings that had free food to eat -- the best one was loaded with all types of chocolate and live jazz. We also got two free drink coupons each to enjoy a glass of the bubbly and a glass of wine if we wanted. All the money went to charity -- gotta love that! It was really special to me to walk around all of the buildings downtown and have my mom tell me how they all fit into our "family history". There were buildings that used to house department stores where my grandmother sold shoes, the department store my mom bought her prom dress from, the restaurant my dad apparently ate lunch at EVERY Thursday because of their "chicken fried steak" plate, the bank building my parents actually met in (back in the early 1970's), and many other sites. Both sides of my family are from this little city, going back to my grandparents and great-grandparents, so it definitely is a special place to me.

My favorite building was one in which we got to walk around outside on the 21st floor -- the views of our little city were beautiful. It was built in the late 1920's, I believe, and it now houses both office space and private condos. On the way up in the elevator, some people were talking about how one or two of the Hanson Brothers have a condo in that building. Hahahaha, gotta love small-town celebrities. And don't worry, I restrained myself from breaking out into a little "Mmmbop" in front of all of those people.

Here are some pictures from the evening. (Click on the pictures for an up-close view.)

The newspaper had printed something about needing to wear close-toed shoes if you wanted to go up in a historic hotel that is being renovated (and where Elvis slept back in the day), so I was at a loss of what to put on. (However, they didn't hold anyone to the rule so it ended up that I could have totally worn open-toed shoes like everyone else.) I mean, in the summer, I am a flip-flops only type of girl and don't hardly own any close-toed summer shoes besides my Converse, so I finally threw on my cowboy boots with a sundress. I don't wear my boots all that often, but I do love my cowboy boots because of their quirkiness, and apparently so did a few others. I stopped counting after a while all of the comments on them, and before the end of the night, two people had taken pictures of them! Ha! That definitely made my mom and I laugh.

All in all a very fun and spontaneous evening.


Here's to a great Friday!

Thursday, June 18, 2009


Just because I haven't been here, posting my little heart out, doesn't mean that I haven't been busy.

'Cause I have. Been real busy. Been real real busy. Wanna see?

I joined this.

And, in true-to-me fashion, I started late. A couple of weeks late. Which means I killed myself last week trying to get caught up.

First I picked my fabrics. And let me just say that I am sooooooo proud of my little fabric-hoarding self for finally cutting into it. The quilt-a-long calls for 12 half-yard cuts of fabric, and guess how many little half-yard cuts of Anna Maria goodness (er, I mean "Good Folks") were in that little stack? Oh yeah, 12, baby. Exactamundo. And, of course, I had been hoarding that little stack for quite a few months, with no plans whatsoever of what I wanted to make with it. So it only made sense to force myself to use it.

So I cut. And cut and cut and cut and cut, until it was all in nice little 2.5" strips.

And then I sewed. I sewed and sewed and sewed those strips together until I was sick in the head. I'm not always a perfectionist, but because I was using up all of my AMH goodness, of course, I wanted to make sure and make the strips random, but perfectly planned-out random (if there is such a thing) so the whole finished quilt would appear somewhat uniform. So I made myself crazy trying to keep track of what color combinations I had done each time.

Then it was time to cut the sewn strips into big blocks. I made myself crazy with the blue marking pencil trying to get those stupid blocks exactly 12.5" square, but I somehow managed.

Since nothing is ever as easy as you think, then all 42 blocks needed to be arranged on the floor into just the right configuration. I didn't want any of the blocks to match up with the same fabric patterns in the intersections of each 4-block grouping. Oh yeah, I'm that anal. But it really is that organized of a quilt. And by golly, all my seams match up almost perfectly, thanks to my occasional bout of crafter's OCD.

Are you still with me? You are? Really? Haha, just kidding.

Each horizontal row had to be sewn together, and I marked each one with a post-it note pinned on to remember which one was the 1st row, the 2nd, etc. That only took about a year.

And finally I sewed all of the rows together into a quilt top.

Whew. That was a whole lotta stinkin' labor. Not even kidding.

I will be skipping the quilting part, myself, and paying someone with a long-arm machine to quilt it for me. There ain't no way I'm even going to attempt to push that beast through my little sewing machine, nothankyou. Right now this quilt pretty much stands as the biggest quilt I've made to date, and I can't believe I'm even saying this, but I think I'm gonna have to make it a smidge bigger, just in case I want to ever put it on the guest room bed or somethin'. It's currently about 72" by 84". A border all the way around it would give it a nice drape on the full-size bed in our guest room. It's awfully bright color-wise, so I don't know if it will ever really be placed on that bed, but maybe just for fun every once in a while. I have enough strip pieces left over to make two matching shams if I've a mind to, so I'll probably force myself to plod on and get this sucker ready for quilting before it gets put back in a pile for a year or two unfinished. Not that I ever do that sort of thing. Cough, cough...

Yeah, it's bright, but I sure do like it. I've got to come up with a name for it, I suppose, something better than "This dang quilt took stinkin' forever to make"...

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Is this thing on? (Tap, tap...)

Guess what?

I am still here.

Yessirree, Bob.

But I can't put up my next big post until tomorrow because I need some good morning light in order to take a picture to show you what I've been slaving away on.

So a funny little story will have to suffice.

Oh yes, a funny little story -- funny at the cost of my poor cousin, R, in Texas. God bless her.

She posted this on Facebook tonight:

(Keep in mind she is a teacher, God bless her, and just now settling down to enjoy her few months at home with her two kids.)

"The kids were happily playing, so she decided to clean the fridge. Then she noticed T (her three-year-old son) walk into his room naked from the waist down. Then he brought her his dirty underwear and showed her where he had scooted across the carpet in his baby sister's room to wipe himself (like a dog) and then hid the remaining disgusting evidence under his rug."

Oh man. Ohmanohmanohmanohmanohman.

Remember last year when I was crying my eyes out over my son's potty-training issues?

Yeah, I take it back. I take it all back. Something like this little story would have done me in, ya'll.

Let's all raise a glass to my cousin, R, in Texas. God bless that mama...

Monday, June 15, 2009

Craft Hope

Stop whatever you're doing, and go read this post. Not only did "Esperanza" successfully make her first leg of the journey (she's a web star -- check out her picture!), but some of the stories posted about this project are so touching to read. Sewing my first doll sure gave me the warm fuzzies, but that's nothing compared to some of the stories on there. When this project was dreamed up, 30 to 40 dolls were expected -- and in the end 387 arrived on her doorstep. Amazing.

Then make a beeline to this site and join me in signing up for Project #3. I can't knit, but I know I can sew some sort of little baby blanket to send. Surely you can, too? Or heck, sign up and utilize your granny that has mad knitting skills. Or your mom. Or your Great-Aunt Betty. Whatever. Just do it.

God is so good. So very good.

Monday, June 8, 2009


Say a little "Hola!" to my girl here, Esperanza. (Click on the pictures to get a closer look!)

She is pretty stinkin' cute, if I do say so myself.

In fact, I loooooooooooooove her. She is the first dolly I have ever sewn, and being that I don't have any little girls myself, it made me especially giddy to sew her up.

But she won't be living here in Wonderland with me. She will hopefully find her way into the arms of some special little girl who doesn't yet have a dolly to love. Tomorrow she'll be packed (lovingly) into a box, shipped to Eren, and eventually she'll find her way down to an orphanage in Nicaragua via Craft Hope. I am already praying over her that she will bring comfort and love to someone somewhere.

So, although it is kind of hard to let go of the first dolly I ever made, I am pretty excited about the future she has ahead of her. And I can see how these little sweet things could get so incredibly addicting to make! Who cares that I am a grown woman -- I totally want a dolly of my own, which means I'll probably be making Esperanza's twin in the near future...

Finally -- some crafty goodness from me again. I've had a million other things that I've needed to do, but I'm so glad I chose to do this project. (No matter that I waited until the last-minute to do it. Ahem.)

*Pattern for the doll is from Wee Wonderfuls (the Olive pattern), and her beautiful name, Esperanza, was chosen by me for it's meaning -- "hope" -- in Spanish.

Sunday, June 7, 2009


Absolutely brilliant. One of the most beautiful movies I have seen in a long time. It was beautiful in so many ways -- cinematically, musically, and a wonderful storyline.

I knew it would be good, but I had no idea it would be that good.

Friday, June 5, 2009

Vintage Photo Friday

Happy Vintage Photo Friday, everyone!

(As always, click on photos to get a closer look.)

Today is a two-fer day -- two vintage photos for the low, low price (free) of one!
(I know I'm a dork, and I'm totally fine with that.)

The first photo says on the back that it was taken May 30, 1940, which means my dad (the little chap in the dapper duds) would have been about 3&1/2 years old. His dad (my grandfather) is on the left, and then to his right are his grandmother (my great-grandmother), his aunt (my great-aunt Pauline), and his mother (my grandmother). I just love the look of all of their outfits, especially my dad's. I would love to dress my son just like that!

The first photo has no date on the back, but I suspect it was taken in either 1939 or 1940 sometime, when my dad would have been 3 or 4 years old. How cute is he in that little car? Those cars nowadays go for a pretty penny. Sure wish someone would've saved that one. :)

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Must've been living under a rock...

...'cause I'm just now tuning into the beautiful music of Hem.

I guess the good news is that there is a lot of love to be found for me since they have a whole slew of CD's under their belts.

Yep, me 'n iTunes are pretty good friends.

Wednesday, June 3, 2009


I'm still here.

But I'm swamped, as in literally up to my eyeballs in everything. Thank you notes that need to be finished from over a month ago (son's birthday party), newer thank you notes from all my boy was showered with during his recent hospital stay, several sewing projects that have yet to be started although they are nearing their deadlines (yipes), family that is coming for a visit this weekend, posts that need to be composed regarding my awesome girlie weekend with my homie, Courtney, a house that needs to be cleaned, a long line of house projects that need to be finished/started/completely shelved, etc., etc., etc.

Oh, and that doesn't include all the mundane everyday pleasures of domesticity, such as laundry, dishes, cooking, chauffering, kitty-litterbox-emptying. And my part-time ballet gig for these two weeks.

So I will be back soon, just as soon as I find my magic wand. I know I left it somewhere...