Thursday, December 31, 2009

Happy New Year

I know this has been a difficult year for a lot of people for a number of reasons. The economy has impacted so many of us in ways that we had no idea would happen. Perhaps your family has been touched by health issues, relationship problems, job losses , the loss of a home, or worse, the loss of a loved one.

My prayer is that you have a renewed sense of hope as we look to the New Year. May you know that the God that created the universe, the Lord whose birthday we just celebrated is there to wrap His arms around you, to protect you and to give you peace.

Have a joyous, happy, healthy and prosperous New Year.

Love from Miss Jean and Maggie

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

I Have a Code In My Node

Well, it finally hit. I've been dodging this cold for a week and now it's here. I've been taking Airborne so that has helped. Up until now, that is. Yesterday was spent taking son to Sacramento to the airport, dropping my sewing machine off for a service, taking Mom and Sweety out to lunch on the way home, going out to dinner with friends and then going to Target. Full day. Maybe too full. Anyway, I'm down for the count.

Trouble is, when I get like this I get a little, shall we say, spacey. I think of all kinds of things I should be doing. Must be the drugs. My sewing room is now a disaster after taking down the peg board and trying to figure out what I'm going work on as a gift for a friend. It's due the first of February and I've known about this exchange with my quilt group for two years. So me bad!

Then the poor gardener and UPS driver had to witness me in all my sick messy haired, pajamas and bathrobe glory. Pitiful.

I just finished my comfort food breakfast. Milk Toast! Nectar of the Gods!!! Toast with hot milk poured on it and sprinkled with cinnamon and sugar. I took no pictures. You are welcome. What, may I ask, is your comfort food? Is it toast and tea? Is it something nutritious or something decadent? What makes you feel all warm and cozy inside when you are sick

I'm going back to bed now to read my new Robyn Carr book, Forbidden Falls. I've been waiting months for it and this is the perfect day to get started on it.

Have a healthy day!

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Merry Christmas Everyone

May you and your family have the most blessed and precious Christmas and a New Year that is filled with love and good health. May you feel the presence of the Lord in all you do.

Thank you to all of my blog friends for being such an important part of my life.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Making a list.........

"Let's see. I need to speak to Miss Maggie Dear in California. According to my Naughty/Nice List she is a Scottish Terrier Dog. Hmmmm........ Interesting!"

"Maggie! Are you there? I need to talk to you."

"Oh, goody! It's Santa! Yes, Santa, what can I do for you?"

"Well, Maggie, I need to get ready to make my deliveries on Christmas to all the good little boys and girls AND all the good little animals. I just wanted to make sure that you have been a good little puppy this year. It's been reported that maybe, just maybe, you had a few, shall we say, issues with your behavior."

"I have absolutely no idea what you are talking about!"

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Your Help Needed

Is this not the cutest little quilt you have ever seen? Holly over at Lakehouse Quilts has created this darling fabric panel. She has challenged a number of her best quilt industry friends to come up with their version of a quilt using the fabric. She has been show casing their talent over on her blog. Amazing! Run on over there and take a peek. I'll wait for you......... Back? Ok! Aren't they the cutest?

Here is where your help is needed. This past year Ireland has been devastated by floods and the wonderful folks at Quilt Irish magazine are doing their part to help. You can read about it here. The darling quilt above was put together by none other than Elizabeth of Late Bloomer Quilts. She has a warm spot in her heart for all things Irish and Scottish, having Irish heritage herself. To help out she is putting her quilt up for auction. Whoever is the high bidder will send their winning bid directly to the specified agency and Elizabeth will send you the quilt. That is a win, win situation if I've ever heard of one. So if you can, go to Elizabeth's blog and bid.

If you cannot bid but would like to help out, go here. There are other things you can do to help.

A big thank you ahead of time for all of your help and a GREAT BIG HUG AND THANK YOU to Elizabeth. When you put quilters and bloggers together you get perfection!


Monday, December 14, 2009

When I first stumbled upon blogging I was thrilled about discovering this new forum. It held a world of talent that I could learn from. Crafting, quilting, decorating, gardening, cooking. The list is endless. Then I started to actually get to know some of the bloggers which was just icing on the cake. Some have become real life friends that I have met. Others are my "virtual" friends that I cherish just as much. Blogging fills a part of my life in a wonderful way. I feel connected and enriched and grateful that I have been able to be a part of such a loving and talented community.

But with every joy in life there is sorrow as we all know. Through these blogs there are Mothers asking for prayers for their sons or daughters going off to fight a war. There is the young mother showing such joy at the birth of her child, only to pass away suddenly shortly afterwards. There are tragic accidents that leave us speechless and in awe at the resilience of the human soul. Even the passing of a dear pet tears at our hearts for these that we only know via the computer.

One of the first blogs that I discovered was written by Jen in Australia. She was using her blog as a journal to write down her journey with cancer. She was a beautiful girl with an adorable son, Jack. As I sat at the computer this morning to check on my "friends", I realised I hadn't checked in with Jen for a while. Sadly, she has passed away on December 9th at the age of 40 after her long and courageous fight.

Please stop by her site to give your love and prayers to her family and especially little Jack.

Precious in the sight of the LORD is the death of his saints.
Psalm 116:15

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Two Great Blogs

If you haven't been by an visited Kim at Daisy Cottage you must certainly do so now. She has a wonderful blog that showcases her many talents as a decorator, has absolutely the sweetest little dog in the world (next to mine of course) and is a true friend to many.

If you pop on over there today for a visit you'll get a double treat!! She has a guest blogger who is none other than my friend Becky from Sweet Cottage Dreams. Sweet is the operative word here. I love Becky to pieces. I did a post about how I met her here. It's one of those blog stories where you see them on a blog and wish you could meet them and then you find out they live 15 minutes from you. It's truly a small, small world.

Run, don't walk, on over to Kim's blog and read Becky's guest post. She has a wonderful, inspirational story, gorgeous pictures of her holiday decorated home and a GIVE AWAY!!


Sunday, December 6, 2009


Here are some more pictures from my recent trip to Denver. As you can see we had snow. It started snowing in the evening and I managed to get these first two shots after dark. It was just beautiful!

It was 28 degrees outside when I got up this morning here in central California. I hadn't been watching the weather reports and I have quite a bit of frost damage to my plants. Mostly summer annuals that were ready to go anyway. Tonight I am going to go out and cover my citrus and some of my other more tender plants. They are predicting rain and possibly snow on the valley floor tonight! We don't get snow very often here so hopefully I'll have more snow pictures for you soon. I can't wait to see what Maggie thinks of all that white stuff!!!

*By the way. Thank you all so much for your help with my curtain rod dilemma. PKM suggested contacting Country Curtains, which I did. Their sales person was very helpful and I know now what to do. Hopefully, I'll be able to get the window covered soon as it's chilly in the bedroom without any curtains.

Have a restful and warm Sunday afternoon.


Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Calling all decorators!

I have a window problem and I need some advise. I have a sliding glass door in our bedroom. We recently redecorated and now I'm looking for window coverings. I have the drapes - some beautiful green/cream embossed panels that I found at - K Mart! Yes, K Mart! They are actually very lovely and just the perfect shade of soft green that match my green walls. Yes, the green walls painted Grasslands green by Kelly Moore that is so beautiful it brings tears to my eyes. Well, after 22 years of pink wallpaper anything would be an improvement!

The curtain panels are to be used with either rod pocket curtain rods or rods with clips. No problem. My problem is I want to put a sheer pinch pleet patio panel behind the drapes. I'll keep the drapes pulled to one side most of the time and want the ease of using the draw for the sheers. Just enough to let in some diffused light and to hide the dirty windows (keepin' it real here folks!).

My problem? I cannot find hardware that will suit this. It needs to probably be a double rod - traverse in the back and rod type in the front. I can't find one anywhere. I've checked all over the internet, Penney's, Target, Bed Bath and Beyond, etc.. What do I do, ladies? Do I hang the drapes higher and the sheers lower? That would mess up the length I'm sure.

I suppose I need this:

Any help and advise would be greatly appreciated.

Saturday, November 28, 2009

I'm Back!!!

I'm back folks! I was visiting my son in Denver for over three weeks. Son came home and then when he went back I hitched a ride and went with him. He's in the military and I don't get to visit him very often so it was quite a treat for me. However, this boy does not like to stop when driving. I started counting the Cracker Barrels that we passed. "That's number six, Aaron!" "What are you talking about, Mom?" "Oh, nothing........" Anyhoo, we drove the southern route from Northern California through Arizona and New Mexico and then on up to the Denver area. It was just beautiful and we were blessed with perfect weather. We weren't able to stop and visit, but I did wave when we passed the little town where Mary lives! Next visit I hope to be able to take the time to stop for a cup of tea.

This is what greeted us when we arrived. Beautiful snow! I'm a transplanted midwesterner so I was raised in the snow but don't get to actually "play" in it now. I learned a little secret about the snow in this area. It comes on like gang busters and then in two days it leaves! The best of both worlds.

Son's back yard.

He lives on the end of a court and because of the way the house faces, the snow stays on the front yard longer than anywhere else on the street.

Miss Jean pretending to be an outdoorsy person!

This is my new little buddy, Abby. She kept me company during the day when son went to work.

I would like to thank all the wonderful people at the Calvary Chapel Aurora church. They became instant friends and a real blessing to son and I. They epitomize what Christ called His church to be. I'll always consider them to be my home away from home church. Pastor Ed: You can be proud of your church family there.

I had a chance to fly home. However, since I hate to fly (something about falling all that distance to the ground just freaks me out) I decided to take Amtrak home. What a blast!!! I left Denver at 8:05 on the dot Saturday morning and arrived in Modesto at 6:30 p.m. the next evening. The route takes you through western Colorado, Utah, Nevada and Northern California. The scenery was glorious!!! I splurged and bought myself a little, I mean little, roomette. Just cozy enough for me, my books and magazines and camera. It was extremely relaxing. I thought I would read more but I kept looking out the window in case I missed something.

Meals are included in the fare and you sit family style. We had the BEST waiter who greeted you and always said, "Have a seat and introduce yourselves." He was so wonderful that he got lots of hugs when we left. Every car has a porter that is on duty all the time. I don't know when he sleeps! I find taking the train to be more expensive than flying, but I would recommend taking it for at least one direction of your trip.

I'm just getting myself organized from being gone and then with Thansgiving. Hopefully, now I'll be able to catch up with all my bloggy friends. I missed you all!!!!

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving

My prayer is that you all have the most wonderful of Thanksgivings full of family, peace, love and joy.

Saturday, October 31, 2009

Miss Jean is Traveling

I'm off on a last minute trip to the Denver area with my son. Miss Jean will be back in a couple of weeks. If I can figure out how to download pictures on son's computer, I'll do a post or two. If not, I'll see you when I get back.

Stay cool while I'm gone. Since I'm going to Colorado, I know I'll probably stay more than cool!!!

*** Just checking in from beautiful, and I mean beautiful, Colorado! After last weeks blizzard I was a little scared, but the snow is melting and the skies are blue. Son lives in Centennial on the outskirts of Denver. The other night we rode the metro to the downtown district for dinner and we had a great time. I brought all the wrong clothes - did I think I was going to the North Pole or what!?! The only shopping I've done so far is to buy a few t-shirts at Penney's and load up on incidentals at Target.

I have never seen an area with such great shopping centers and an abundance of great restaurants. We went to church Wednesday night and everyone was so friendly. Colorado, you should be proud of yourself!!!

I have to talk son into taking me into town to the local quilt store. I'm going through withdrawals!

In the meantime, I'm checking all my bloggy friends so don't think I haven't forgotten any of you.

Ta Ta!!

Saturday, October 24, 2009


Is this not the cutest thing? A Scottish Terrier pumpkin!!!!! Maggie would approve, I'm sure, wouldn't you Maggie? The Better Homes and Garden magazine people have the cutest pumpkin stencils on their site. They have lots of dog breeds as well as other interesting projects to get your home ready for your little Trick or Treaters.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Alice Blue Gown

This is a beautiful vintage print that my sister recently found on one of her antiqueing jaunts. It is just beautiful, as you can see. Printed on the bottom of the print, it says "Alice Blue Gown". I'm printing the lyrics to that old song below. However, I'm leaving off the author as I have found at least three writers who are attributed to writing it.

Alice Blue Gown

I once had a gown, it was almost new,
Oh, the daintiest thing,
it was sweet Alice blue,
With little forget-me-nots placed here and there,
When I had it on, oh, I walked on the air!
it wore, and it wore, and it wore,
'Til it went, and it wasn't no more.

In my sweet little Alice blue gown,
I first wandered down into town,
I was so proud inside,
As I felt every eye,
And in every shop window I primped, passing by.
A new manner of fashion I'd found,
And the world seemed to smile all around.

'Til it wilted, I wore it, I'll always adore it,
My sweet little Alice blue gown!
The little silk worms that made silk for that gown,
Just made that much silk and then crawled in the ground,
'Cause there never was anything like it before,
And I don't care to hope there will be any more!

And it's gone, 'cause it just had to be,
Still it wears in my memory.
In my sweet little Alice blue gown,
When I first wandered down into town,
I was so proud inside,
As I felt every eye, And in every shop window I primped, passing by.

A new manner of fashion I'd found,
And the world seemed to smile all around.
So it wouldn't be proper If made of silk were another,
My sweet little Alice blue gown!

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Somebody's Knockin'

Did you ever notice how you don't really "see" things around the house until you have to replace them for some reason? Our old door knob was over 20 years old. I never paid it much attention until it was broken. We had some movers take out an old large television last year and they broke the handle. On closer inspection it was due to be replaced anyway.

I didn't realise how scratched and tarnished it had become. We had been doing some redecorating so we took our time replacing it as we have a security screen door with a dead bolt anyway. So this is what the door looked like for the longest time. Shameless, I know. It got to be a little embarrasing to put your fingers through the holes to open the door for guests.

We finally went down to a local door hardware specialty store. Turns out that our door knob was shorter in length than they are made now. See the little bottom hole? They said that they did not have a knob or back plate that would cover the holes. Since it is a metal door it proved to be quite a dilemma. The salesman assured me that there was nothing I could do but buy a new door, pay them to bore out the holes, buy new hardware and then pay them to install it. Somehow that didn't sound right to me so we went home.

I got on the trusty old internet and found this site. What a wonderful place to find hardware for the home. They have beautiful antique looking hardware for all of your needs and are the nicest people to deal with. I found just what I needed at the same price I would have had to pay at a local "big box" retailer. Since they are out of state there was no tax or shipping. The quality of my new knob is outstanding. Plus, it was a brand that the local specialty store carried!!! I knew there was something suspicious!

Oh, well, moving on...... Our friend Barry volunteered to install the door knob for us. He brought along a little help to supervise. Yes, folks, it's Duhgall! Barry is married to Becky of Sweet Cottage Dreams fame.

So like all good supervisors, it took Duhgall and Maggie to watch Barry install the hardware.

Here's the new door knob. Yep, Miss Anne, I was so inspired by you that I bought a glass door knob. I am so in love with it!!!!

Hey, I gotta go. I think somone is at the door.........

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

I'm Back!

I want to thank all of you who left such kind comments and kept checking back while I was gone. Sweety is doing much better and we have some more appointments scheduled to make sure that he stays that way. I don't know what it is about men when they are sick or have a chronic condition. But that is a post for another time.

Things have been a little hectic around here with car trouble. We've had our car in the shop (two shops at that) no less than four times! After a new battery, a new alternator, and new front brakes the voltage warning light is still coming on and there is still a funny (not) scraping noise coming from the front right tire side. Besides that there is something rolling around that sounds like a marble. Just a little nagging sound that adds to the stress. (New note for those who ever go back and read my blog again when there's nothing better to do and there are no re-runs of Law and Order on the television: It was a marble rolling around making all that racket! Whew!!) We only have one car and with Sweety needing medical care and my Mom having recent surgery, it's been very stressful. If any of you know anything about cars or knows anyone that does and has some sort of clue as to what the problem might be, let me know!!!!!

Deep breath! Aaahhhhhh! On another front, or weather front I should say, we are having our first storm of the season and it is a doozy!!! Here is a picture of my back yard. Do you see all of the debris on the ground? I wish I could add sound effects so you could hear the wind. Oh, my goodness! It is just howling and blowing. Last night we went out and took down the patio umbrellas because the local news station said there would be really high gusts of wind all day. I wish you could see how gray the sky is.

Fact is, I love weather like this. So what's a girl to do? First of all, since I'm retired and woke up with a headache, I'm staying in my cozy jammies and robe all day. Yes, you are very welcome for my not posting a picture of that!!!

I'll be drinking tea and reading the latest book by one of my favorite authors, Susan Wiggs, Lakeshore Christmas. What I won't be doing is eating an entire bag of Trader Joe's Kettle Corn in one sitting. Nope, not me. That would just be wrong, considering the fact that that's what I did for two days in a row!

Again, thank you for all the bloggy love that was sent my way!

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Checking In...

Maggie here. I wanted to touch bases with all of my mommy's friends. My Daddy is doing much better and he thanks everyone for all of their prayers and well wishes. He's having to watch his diet and take better care of his diabetes. You can still pray for him, though. That is always a good thing to do.

Mommy said to tell you all that she misses you and will be back soon.

Monday, September 28, 2009

Blog Hiatus

Miss Jean is taking a little bloggy break. I wrote about my Sweety and his medical problems here so I won't go into them again now. He has had another small episode this past week. Hopefully it will stay small and no further problems will arise. In the meantime, Maggie and I have to concentrate on taking care of and watching him.

I'll still lurk around and be checking up on my blog friends. I just want to tell you all how much the entire blog community has meant to me. When times are stressful, I can always count on you all to make me laugh, appreciate what I have, learn something new, travel to wonderful places and just "get away".

Blessings to you all.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Passing Down Traditions

As most of you know I love to quilt. I don't always get (or make) the time to do it, but I love it none the less. I think it comes from my Grandma Somers. I am fortunate to have some of the heirloom quilts that have passed down from generation to generation in our family.

My daughter is not interested in quilting. Not that she isn't artistic or talented. Just the opposite, there isn't anything she can't do. Sewing just isn't her thing. I have a wonderful daughter-in-law. I would love to sit and teach her to quilt but she lives near Denver and I'm in California. I would like to start making trips back there and take her to quilt classes at a local quilt shop. She has just started a new job in a new city with a new house so perhaps now isn't the time. Maybe next year.

I don't have a granddaughter like my friend does. She is eight and is already quilting and stitching. So much fun!

So what am I to do? Hmmmmmm.........

"Maggie, would you like to learn to quilt?"

"I think so, Mommy. What's quilting?"

"Well, you buy beautiful fabric that costs lots of money, cut it up and sew it back together. That's called quilting."

"You're kidding me, right?"

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

It's a mystery to me!

One of my most favorite things in the world are old quilts. I love them even more than new ones or making them myself. I guess it's the feel of them and the history that they evoke.

This quilt rack is hanging in my bedroom. Enlarge the picture to see what it says! These quilts are not my family heirloom quilts. Those I have displayed in a glass quilt case in my guest room. These are found quilts that somehow got separated from the family they came from. That's the mystery to me. How could someone part with a family quilt! Shameful! But a bonus for me.

Last weekend my sister, Janice, called and wanted to meet and go antique shopping at The Green Pea here in town. I wasn't really looking for something, but I always keep my eyes open. Sandi had just put this quilt out for display the day or two before. She didn't think anyone would actually be interested in it and really hated to get rid of it herself. Well, girlfriends, Miss Jean spotted it. With heart racing, palms itching, sweat beading up on my forehead, I quickly checked the tag and grabbed it! It is in P-R-I-S-T-I-N-E condition. No tears, no stains, no nada. It goes back to the late 20's or early 30's from what Sandi and I can ascertain. Sandi had purchased it from a lady who said (correct me if I'm wrong, Sandi) it was made out of her mother's dresses by a great-grandmother. The stars are vintage feed sack fabric (re-purposed into clothes at the time) and 30's fabrics. The green fabric used for the sashing strips , binding and back is the popular shade of green for that time.

Now I quilt but I am no expert at it. I quilt to have fun, not to enter quilt shows. If my corners match up I'm a happy camper. I have all the latest gadgets, rulers and rotary cutters to make quilting so much easier than our ancestors had. They had cardboard templates and scissors and did everything by hand. This quilt is all hand stitched and hand quilted. The squares are spot on even, the points are perfect. This person was a true craftsman.

The colors will go just perfect in my bedroom. I use vintage china and glass for dinners and I use old quilts to cover up with, I don't just use them for display. There is nothing, nothing, better than napping under a vintage quilt. The softness of the well loved and well worn fabric is intoxicating.

Guess who else thinks so? The first day I had the quilt, I put it on the bed and thought I would take an afternoon nap. Maggie immediately jumped up on the bed and cuddled herself down.

Pure puppy nap heaven!

Thank you for selling me the quilt, Sandi. I know if was difficult for you to part with. It has a good home and you can come visit it anytime you want. Just don't try to make Maggie move. She thinks it belongs to her!

***Now I don't want any of you to worry. You may remember this story that involves a fabric emergency I had last year. I needed the fabric because Maggie had eaten chewed a good size piece off of a quilt I had made. She has been rehabilitated and does not chew household items any more. Whew!

Monday, September 14, 2009

Patrick Swayze

Can you remember when Dirty Dancing came out in 1987? My daughter and I watched it over and over again. I still do. I love that film and what it stands for: unconditional love.

My heart is sad today.

Patrick Swayze
August 18, 1952 - September 14, 2009

Patrick: We love you and will miss you. Our prayers are with your wife, Lisa.

Friday, September 11, 2009

Lest we forget

Lissa, over at Moda Lissa had this wonderful graphic on her blog and has written a very concise post about the tragedy of 9/11 and the American flag. Hop on over to her blog to see what she has to say.

First of all, we all need to take some time to reflect on the tragedy that happened to our country eight years ago. It is incredible that that many years have passed. Can you believe it? It seems like yesterday. As a military family, I can tell you that my heart ached for a long time after that awful event.

Like Lissa says, the patriotism that swelled throughout the country united us. We need to united again in the face of the tragedies and trials that this country is going through today.

Fly your flag.
Pray for our military.
Pray for our firefighters and law enforcement personnel.
Pray for our leaders.
Most of all, pray for this great country.

If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

A Lovely Day

I'm the last to post about a recent blogger "meet and greet". Last week Becky from Sweet Cottage Dreams, Sandi from The Green Pea Boutique and Dawn from Cottage State of Mind and I met for breakfast and shopping here in my little home town. Becky and I have been good friends since meeting over a year ago via blog-land and we both know Sandi because she owns an awesome antique store here in town. None of us had met Dawn other than through her blog. It was decided that a meeting was in order and what a fun day we had.

First thing we did was meet for breakfast at our little restaurant here in town. It's owned by some friends of ours and we were able to sit and chat for quite a while. Once the picture taking started I'm sure that the other patrons thought we were crazy but, hey, what's breakfast without a few (make that hundreds) giggles. Let's just say that Becky has a unique way to make you smile for the camera!

Then it was on to Sandi's store. We spent hours going 'round and 'round looking and shopping, shopping and looking and talking and laughing!!!!! The other ladies took much better pictures than I did so be sure to check out their blogs to see all the fun! We all we able to find some treasures to take home. If you are ever in the area be sure to stop at the shop. You won't be disappointed!

Becky was very generous and brought us gifts. Who doesn't need a little Mary Engelbreit love in their life! The darling book mark, magnet and note pad were lovingly wrapped up with delicious cookies. No cookies you say? Why they are long gone!!! Yummy!! Thank you, Becky!!!!

Dawn knew that Becky and I are Scottish Terrier freaks nuts collectors. She brought us copies of a Sunset Magazine cover from 1933 that she owns. See the Scotty? So cute! This little puppy (yuck, yuck) will hang in my sewing room to cheer me up!

This was the piece de resistance. Dawn made these darling cupcakes for Sandi, Becky and I!!! OMG!!!! You should have heard the squeals!!! Before I had "met" Dawn I had seen the post that she did on these absolutely darling vintage cake candle holders. I called Becky and screamed calmly said "did you see those Scotty candle holders!?!!!?!" Man was I coveting them. I had no idea that one day I would own two of them. Sandy made these "pupcakes" out of styrofoam balls, spackling compound and spray paint. Imagine! She lovingly put them all together on a vintage plate and VOILA! Little bundles of love wrapped up in a darling little cake box. I admit I had more than a few tears in my eyes over this one. Bless your little heart, Dawn!!!!!

What a fun filled day we had and it ended with promises for another visit from Dawn who wants to bring her daughter up to meet The Green Pea's guard dog, Barney.

Ladies: I really encourage you to get out there and meet your blog sisters!!!!!! Instant friends, instant fun, instant love!!

Monday, September 7, 2009

Car Trouble...

Need I say more?

This was my Monday after picking up the boys 1 1/2 hours from home. I was about to check us into a motel and call it a day, but their dad got my car started and we limped home. I didn't want to have to ride all the way home in a tow truck with two little boys.

I hate car trouble. So much for Labor Day!

***Just a note to let you know we got the car fixed. It was the alternator @ $498!!! This evening the car started making a LOUD humming noise! Some days it doesn't pay to get out of bed.....

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

A Real Hero

It's really easy to get down on kids these days. It seems like all you hear about in the news are the bad ones, the "gang bangers", disrespectful kids, juvenile delinquents. Call them what you want. When I see kids that I know are a problem, I often wonder how they got that way. Do they treat their parents badly, do they care about their siblings or their grandparents? What happened to make them so angry? I used to work at a high school and I saw students with a terrible home life who turned out great. Others had everything they could ever want and they were dropouts by the time they were juniors. I know there is no rhyme or reason sometimes for their behavior.

Then you read something like this, and you have hope for the future again.

Bravo, Kaleb Eulls!!! Your family must be so proud of you. I don't know many adults, let alone a teenager, who would have done what you did.

After reading the article, I know that Kaleb doesn't consider himself a hero, but he is. I'm sure also, that he doesn't feel that he deserves any type of recognition or medal, but he does. President Obama needs to hear about this fine young man!!!

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Quilting In the Garden

I wanted to show you that even though I have been incredibly busy this summer, I was actually able to do a wee, tiny, itsy, Betsy bit of sewing. I had the components already cut out for this quilt and I was able to put this much together when my friends and I got together one weekend for a quilting day. Aren't the fabrics luscious? I can't take any credit for picking them out. One day Sweety and I took a drive down to the Clovis/Fresno area for some quilt and antique shopping for me and a visit to his favorite winery for him. I saw the quilt hanging in Quilter's Paradise in Clovis. I couldn't take my eyes off of it. I went back maybe five or six times and finally told myself, "Jean, for crying out loud, just buy the kit!!!" ( I sometimes have to be a little forceful with myself when I'm not co-operating!)

Here is the pattern and the picture shows how it will look when I'm done (cross your fingers everyone!). It was designed by their in-house designer Colette Belt. She has other patterns and kits available and I just love her work. I was a little stymied as to how to do the borders and I was able to call the shop and actually have her answer my questions. How cool is that?

If you are a quilter or a gardener or both or just like pretty things, mark your calendar for the annual Quilting In The Garden Show at Alden Lane Nursery in Livermore, California. You can read all about it
here. It's September 26th and 27th and is a must see event. I'll be the one running around like a crazy person taking pictures with my little pink camera! Stop me and say hi!!!

For some reason my picture of the pattern is not enlarging and is showing a "Google error". Does anyone know what that is all about?

Monday, August 24, 2009

Well alrighty, then.....

Today was our grandson's first day back to school. As I usually do, I drive the 25 minutes to their house so I can accompany them to school. That is after taking pictures on their front porch......

Oh, right. There are no pictures! By the time I got to their house Redmond had already gone and walked to school (three blocks away). My daughter said that he was anxious to get going (a good sign) and didn't want to wait for us. We took Samuel to school and found Redmond in the playground. We could tell that it was off limits to make fuss over him. You know the look. The one that says, "Please, don't embarrass me!" Samuel, also, was making it clear that their would be no pictures. He was just too grown up for that!

So our summer of babysitting the boys is over. We had a great time with them and the days just literally flew by. There were so many things I wanted to do with them but just didn't get around to. Places I wanted to take them, projects I wanted to do with them, lessons I wanted to teach them.

But when all is said and done, I believe that Sweety and I did accomplish the number one thing on our "to do" list for summer. Let the boys know that they have grandparents that love them. After all, that is the most important thing we could do, isn't it?

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Julie and Julia

Ok, I'm going to jump on the Julie and Julia band wagon. Sweety and I went last weekend to see it and we had a wonderful time. This movie is great! Everyone in the audience was laughing and thoroughly enjoying themselves. I highly recommend it. I give it a Five Scotties rating!

This is my copy of Mastering the Art of French Cooking. Actually, I had given it to my daughter, but I have borrowed it back. There is a chicken dish in the movie I would like to attempt to duplicate. It was a gift from a friend and she wrote such a nice inscription in the front. Problem was, once I opened the book, there were a number of pages out of sequence and missing. The publisher had me return it and they sent me a new one. Fine, but now the sentiment isn't there anymore.

Notice the copyright of my copy? Yes, I've had it for years. I used to watch Julia's cooking show religiously. Sadly, her cooking prowess didn't rub off on me, but to this day I love to watch cooking shows. Sorta like, "oh, that is what the kitchen is for!" Tee Hee!

Watching the movie, I had no idea there was such an intricate and complex story behind the book. The years of disappointment and perseverance that it took to get it published is amazing. It got me to thinking. Every book that you read, every movie that you watch, every quilt pattern that you buy has a story behind it. Someone has had a dream of creating something worthwhile and they have put the effort into seeing that dream to fruition. In fact, sometimes the story behind the story is more interesting than the finished product itself.

What should we do? Well, for one thing, when I find an author whose books I enjoy, I write them a quick email and tell them. I have done this numerous times with authors and they always (always!) write me back and thank me. Most all of today's authors have web sites (and blogs) and have contact information. Artists (like the rest of us) all like to be appreciated and what they have done validated. Besides, it's the polite thing to do.

So go out and see the movie and then hop on over to Julie Powell's blog and say hello. Or finish that book you've been reading and let the author know how much you enjoyed it. Or just tell someone in your life that they mean something to you and you appreciate all you do. It's the easiest way I know to make yourself feel good, too.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Pink Roses

Beautiful roses from a beautiful lady!

Thank you, Dory.

I love you!!!

Saturday, August 15, 2009

My Boys...

Sitting between them
on the sofa,
I read aloud
from their favorite books.

It's been a full day
for two tired boys,
and their little heads, heavy with sleep,
lean against my shoulders.

The story is only
halfway read,
when I know they both
have slipped away
to their dreaming place.
But I keep my voice low
and continue to read.

Should one or the other
partially wake,
as sometimes happens
when sleep is new,
I want them to think
that nothing's changed
in their little world,
so they'll feel safe.

Or maybe I just want
to lengthen the stay
of two small heads
leaning on me,
while I pretend
my world, too,
hasn't changed.

~Rae Turnbull