Thursday, January 30, 2014


The flu bug that's going around our area has moved into our home.  I really think I caught something when I served on jury duty last week.  Everyone, including the judge and both attorneys, were whooping and crouping.   The whole jury panel was in some stage of the flu or bronchitis.  It's just that time of year.

For now while my head feels as large as a beach ball and my chest is rattling as I breathe, I will settle in with a cup of hot tea followed by a nice nap.  I should have known something was coming on when I was so tired last weekend. 

For now neither of us wants real food.  I've been living on tangerines and chicken soup.  Jeff has been scarfing down cereal and toast.  Dottie & Olive wonder why their Mommy and Daddy don't want to play or go outside for long walks with them.  They're very content to pile up on the foot of our bed and help us nap!

Absolutely nothing else is going on here.  I will touch base when I am feeling at least semi-human.

Wishing you peace & plenty.....Barb

Thursday, January 23, 2014


This morning our porch thermometer said -2 degrees.  I'm not sure how accurate it is.  The weather people are saying the high today should reach 12.  That's not a fit day for man nor beast. 

I have to leave in a bit for jury duty.  I thought it would be cancelled due to the unusually low temps and the gusting wind.  They did change our reporting time to noon, so maybe that will be a bit of improvement.  I know that my Hubby is not thrilled I will be out running around in this mess.  I simply don't have outerwear for these types of temperatures.  So, I'm wearing layers and hoping for the best. 

I have all the blocks sewn and trimmed for the Tumbling Charms quilt I decided to make.  The fabric is the Vin du Jour line from Moda.  The blocks are sitting in stacks until I have time to lay them out.  Laying this design out is a bit of a challenge because of the two strips around each block.  The blocks must be in a certain position to give them the 'tumbling' look.  In one block the strips need to be in the '7' position and the next block the strips should be in the 'L' position.  In some circles this quilt is referred to as the L7 quilt.  It's an easy way to remember the setting but I still get it turned!

There are quite a few different prints to work with that it should be a challenge.  One nice thing is that when the blocks are in the correct position there are no seams to match.  The only matching will be when I sew the rows together.  The border will be the dark purple large floral in the picture.   As you can see there is a lot of negative space in the pattern which gives breathing room and a chance for some pretty quilting.  I hope Reggie is up for this one.  This pattern would make a great quilt for a child with one charm pack and some strips.  I may consider it for one of the groups I belong to.

What are you working on now?  I have so many UFOs to take care of that I have no business starting something new. 

It's time for me brave the elements and get on the road.  Wishing you a blessed day.    Barb

Tuesday, January 21, 2014


Hi Everyone,

After four days off, Jeff reluctantly went back to work this morning.  It feels like Monday to me, but I know it's Tuesday.

We had a slow weekend.  The root canal went well and is painless at this point in time.  I have to be careful with it for a few days until I see my local dentist. 

I began sewing blocks for a Tumbling Charms quilt.  Although the sewing is quick and simple, the trimming goes on forever and ever.  I will post pictures when I have something worthwhile to show.  Right now all I have are heaps of shapeless blocks waiting to be trimmed.  Sometimes Easy + Simple don't = Quick!  I guess we all need practice using our rotary cutters. 

It's snowing here this morning.  I need to make a quick run to the store for a few things to hold us the rest of the week.  I'm also catching up on the laundry and changing the bed today.  Tomorrow I will finally get my hair cut and Thursday morning I have to report for jury duty. 

I hope you all enjoyed your weekend and found some time to sew.  Take care until next time ~~~~  Barb

Saturday, January 18, 2014


I had a surgical root canal done yesterday in Springfield (2 1/2 hours from home).  We drove to the city in blowing snow, but once there the snow stopped and it was bitter cold and very windy.

All went well with my tooth and I was out of the office in about an hour with a fist full of prescriptions and care orders.  I had Jeff stop me at one of the local quilt shops but I was too groggy to shop.  When the clerk told me the Vin du Jour fabric I was shopping for had been discontinued 2-3 years back I knew I was in the wrong place.  They had the Vin du Jour pre-cuts on their shelves next to the register.  I called this to her attention, but she seemed totally disinterested in making a sale. 

We are going to have a slow weekend.  Our temperature is bitter cold and it looks like we may get some more snow.  I may put together a pot of soup or chili.  I actually enjoy Saturday TV cooking shows and an occasional sewing program.  I'm going to find a big quilt and wrap up and hibernate until Monday.

Take care everyone and have a safe weekend.

Wednesday, January 15, 2014


I'm just catching up with the new week.  Where do the weekends go?  This is a medical/dental appointment week for me.  The big appointment is behind me and Friday will be the next one. I sat down and figured out that by February 1 all my assorted 'things' will be done and I'll be free to do whatever again.

I'm not sitting idle waiting for the next appointment however.  Yesterday I embroidered a new Valentine design that I think is really pretty ~~~

What do you think? I though it might be difficult but it wasn't.  I stitched this sample on a plain piece of black cotton.  It was interesting watching the 3-D effect of this piece take shape.  I have no plans for this little gem yet.  I may experiment with different fabric and thread colors.  Maybe stitch it on white and make the ruffle black and the heart shocking pink. 

Valentine's Day has always been one of my favorite holidays.  As I child I couldn't wait to exchange valentines with my classmates to see if I got one from that special someone.  After Timothy H shoved me off the bleachers and my arm broke in the 4th grade we became the best of friends and were boyfriend/girlfriend for 5th and 6th grade.  I still have a tiny gold ring with an amethyst (my birthstone) he gave me. He became class president two years running and I was his loyal campaign manager and biggest supporter!  Memories are a wonderful thing.  If my memory serves me well, Timothy gave me my first kiss....

Wishing you a wonderful day ~  stay safe, warm and happy!

Sunday, January 12, 2014


How did you spend your weekend?  After being snowed in for over a week, my second trip out was interesting....Our Scottie, Dottie, had an upset tummy this morning and got sick in the middle of our mink blanket that has been on top of our bed since the recent blizzard. 

The blanket in question is almost king size and weighs 20+ pounds (seriously).  Since 'the beast' needed some immediate attention we set about finding a way to wash it.  It more than filled our washer to the top and there would have been no room for circulation.  We loaded up and headed for the nearest commercial laundry.  The large loaders in our local establishment wouldn't begin to hold the blanket any better than our home washer.  So, we headed out for the next town over and found a nice facility with a washer that was able to at least get the blanket wet. 

After two full washes, one with soap and the second one with water and a little fabric softener, we felt it was clean enough.  After 75 minutes in the large dryer it was dry enough to come home and finish drying on our bed with the ceiling fan turned on.

I met some very nice people while at the laundry and feel sorry that the prices have gone up so much since I last had to put quarters in machines for their services.  It cost $7.00 for two wash cycles and $4.00 for the dryer.  Families without their own washers and dryers have it rough.  I am totally thankful for our appliances. 

Our weather and the roads have improved considerably in the last two days.  Yesterday I was able to get my car out and drive for the first time in over a week.  There was a fabric sale at our  local fabric shop and it felt so good to be out that I went  to the sale twice!

Blessings to you, Barb

Wednesday, January 8, 2014


As promised here are pictures of the four little quilts I made for a bereavement group at the Missouri Star forum.




The top two are strips using the Quilt-As-You-Go technique.  These are super fast and easy to make.  The center quilt was made using the sewing technique of the Streak of Lightning block, just smaller and set together as a wonky pinwheel.  Hubby likes this one best.  The bottom quilt is a simple one-patch quilt, done in small blocks.  All four quilts were made from scraps and have a single layer of flannel inside as batting. They are a little wrinkled from being folded in plastic bags awaiting mailing.  Tiny quilts are easy to make and I pray they will be a comfort to the mothers who lost their babies.

Our frigid weather continues with the possibility of more snow and/or ice today due to a front moving through the Gulf.  Enough is enough and we haven't had to put up with nearly as much stress and discomfort of many because our power has remained on the whole time.  Even the Girls have cabin fever.  Dottie is downright melancholy and Olives wants to eat all day.

I have a special project to work on next for our daughter who needs small pillowcases and pillow covers for her Esthetician business.  I will have to work out the pattern but it should be fun.  More on this later as the project comes along.  I think I will pre-wash the fabrics for this project.

I was scheduled for jury duty today but it was cancelled due to the weather ~~~ a wise decision. 

Wishing you all a warm and cozy day ~~~  Barb

Monday, January 6, 2014


For the past few days I have been making some very small bereavement quilts for a group I joined at Missouri Star.  It seems oddly sad to make such tiny quilts.  These are given to the mothers of stillborn births along with a copy of the baby's footprints and sometimes a photo (if requested by the mother).  I feel this is a very worthwhile undertaking.  Much prayer and well wishes go into each of these I make.  I will post pictures later.

The arctic blast named Ion has really hit our area hard.  Taking the wind chill into consideration our temperature is a whopping -26 degrees F.  Hubby worked all weekend doing snow removal and he's doing the same today on the job.

I hope everyone is taking extra good care of their pets during this freeze.  Dottie & Olive dislike having to go outdoors in the snow, which is double their height.  I do my best to keep a potty area shoveled off for them.  I limit their time outdoors to 5 minutes.  Once they come back in they are dried off and I fix them warm broth to drink. Being from California they have never experienced 'real' winter.   They think the broth is a good idea!

Tonight I will fix a large pot of spaghetti, salad and garlic bread.  The thing I like most about spaghetti is the leftovers. 

I hope wherever you are that you are safe and warm.   Make a cup of something warm to drink and cuddle up in a good quilt and read a book or watch Downton Abbey (my new obsession!).

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

FIRST DAY OF 2014...

I'm sorry to admit that we went to bed at 7:30 on New Year's Eve.  Jeff and I were worn out to the bone.  We felt that the new year would arrive in fine style whether we were awake or not, and we were right!

It's been a pretty slow day.  The last of the holiday decorations have been packed away in their totes and taken to our storage unit until next year.  The furniture in the TV room has been moved back to it's normal place and all is well in our world.

This morning I baked a Dutch Apple Pie that perfumed the whole house for hours.  A small ham is warming in the oven along with a cheesy hash brown casserole.  To round out the meal we will have fruit salad, rolls and sparkling grape juice.  Any and all diets will begin tomorrow or whenever the leftovers are gone.

It feels good to have a clean slate to fill up.  I hope 2014 is good to all of us in every way. 

We are expecting freezing rain and a small amount of snow this evening.  Tomorrow our area could be a skating rink again.  This time I won't venture out until everything is melted.  Last week my car slid off the road into a ditch and nearly rolled over.  The car and I are none the worse for wear, but it could just as easily have turned out differently. 

Wherever you are, take care and stay safe. 

Time for to join us?