Friday, January 20, 2012

In This Tree...

In this tree...



Next to the pond...



I just found... 


A honeycomb!!


Send bees... please?



My looking at the beehive annoyed the geese (and ducks) in the pond - they flew off:



And as I was coming into the house, I saw this:



How did I live without being in the country?  Every day is an adventure!


Thursday, January 12, 2012

It Snowed!

Ok, so it didn't snow much, but any snow at all is more snow that I have had in oodles of time!  I LOVE snow!  Haven't I said that before?  Something about snow makes it so magical!  Waking up to it makes it even more magical - and that day will come -  but today, I will enjoy the little bit of snow we got last night.  Here are a few pictures:


At one point it was snowing pretty darned good:



Megan and Steve just stood out in it and visited... and I didn't stay out at all!  Lol...
 


I gotta tell you, Megan was super excited!  Even more than I was - hey, it is TRUE, it's weally, weally TWOO!



This morning, we got up to this view:
 


Just a tad more than a dusting of snow:
 


Enough to make it pretty - but not beautiful:



Beautiful is blanketed in a deep snow... 


It is so freaking cold (20° or so outside) and windy as heck - so there is no way I would sit out in it for even a minute!  I would be a crispy critter if I did!  Geez, that wind goes right through you - I had forgotten that!  This bench will stay empty!



Megan thinks she is going to build an enormous snowman... I am waiting to see that... lol... out of a tad more than a dusting?  I told her she has the entire pasture to get snow from - but she better start now before it melts off.  Watch out Jacque!  She said you all are in a contest - her snow man is gonna be bigger than yours!

Anyway, we are praying for more snow, but we are enjoying what we have now.
 


I LOVE snow... send more snow please!!

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

New Projects

I am so danged proud of myself I am about to pop a button!  I finished my batik quilt top and now I can move on to other projects - isn't that awesome?  Here are a few I have lined up...


Have you ever seen a material that took your breath away when you first set eyes on it?  Well, maybe not, but a quilter or someone what sews knows the feeling.  This is a Moda fabric line called "Lovely" - when I first saw it, I knew I wanted a spring/summer quilt from the line.  Can't wait to get started on it, but it is in the waiting que... lol...  That is for you Singapore girls!



This material below is going to be for one of our grandsons... I might get it done for NEXT Christmas.  I don't know if he will like it or not, but he will certainly remember I love him when he gets it!  It is going to have red hair just like his!  This is in que as well...



The fabrics below are the fabrics that I will make a "Turning Twenty" twin sized quilt for the extra bedroom.    I think it is mighty bright... but that doesn't bother me because it is cheery.  I love the colors;  I just hope I do when I turn twenty fat quarters into a twin quilt.  We shall see... and it, of course is in que as well!



Several things are slowing my quilt making progress.  My niece is staying with us for a bit and I am afraid she is seriously afflicted with the quilt bug.  I bought her some material that she picked out, she bought a pattern called "Charming Fractions" and off she went.  With a little direction (and a lot of time on my sewing machine), she is getting close to having her first quilt top done!




Finally, the real reason my progress on my above projects are so slow is a special one.  25+ years ago, I started a quilt... and had no earthly idea what I was doing with no guidance.  I messed up - I came out too short on the lining (batting) of the quilt - which was actually a blanket.  We didn't have money for the batting at the time, so I used a blanket - I never said I was the brightest crayon in the box, but if granny Daisy could do it - so could I, right?  I struggled with it forever, fretted over it and finally, I just tossed it up in the top of the closet.  Steve and I BOTH had spent hours and hours hand stitching the prestamped print - but I figured I had totally screwed it up and being the perfectionist that I am, I couldn't bear to look at it.  
When we moved here, it surfaced again.  I have an honest to God sewing/craft/scrap room, and an honest to God shelf to put all of my material on.  I sorted and stacked until I was blue in the face, but it is finally organized.  On the shelf sat my unfinished quilt (along with an owl that I found that needs to be finished) and  it started working its magic on me.  I pulled the quilt out to see just how bad I had messed up - and now that I have a little knowledge behind me, I can actually see how to finish it!  It won't be perfect, but it WILL be perfectly finished.  So this is what I am working on now:


It will be pretty, won't it?  I promise not to who you the mistakes if you promise not to look when I show it off as a FINISHED project!


Well, I am off to cook a pot roast and while I do it, I will help Steve move things from the lean-to into the now finished shop!  Progress feels good...  :-)

Next in que for him?  Carport(s) for our boat/truck/camper.  *sigh*

And that is it for today... 

Saturday, January 7, 2012

NEGU! In Honor Of...

Jessica Joy Rees...

I follow a few blogs and facebook pages that I have no memory of starting.  One is Jessica Rees facebook page.  Jessica was a 12 year old girl that found out in March 2011 that she had brain cancer.  She fought it like a champ though - posting multiple daily reports of what she was going through and what was ahead.  Posts like, "Chemo today, then daddy and I will work puzzles.  NEGU"  "Bloodwork today, then mommy and I will read.  NEGU"  Nearly every post ended with a good note.  Something bad was always followed with something she looked forward to.  

I read all her posts for months - following her through the good and the bad.  A few weeks ago, Jessie asked her Dr if she could go to Colorado - she wanted to play in the snow.  After much contemplation she was allowed to go.  Posts like "I get to go to Colorado to play in the snow!  I am going to have a snowball fight with daddy!  NEGU"  Then, "They wouldn't let my oxygen on the plane, but I don't think I will need it, so we went anyway!  NEGU" And finally, "I had a snowball fight!  I laughed until I cried - I love playing in the snow!  NEGU"

NEGU was started by the sweet young lady to raise awareness of kids with cancer.  Her initial goal was to get 50,000 'likes' on facebook to raise 50,000 people's awareness about kids with cancer.  Do you know what NEGU means?  Never Ever Give Up!  She started stuffing plastic jars she labeled 'Joy Jars' with sweet nothings (crayons, socks, words of encouragement; fun things) for kids with cancer and she put a note in there to Never Ever Give Up!  NEGU! and sent them to hundreds of kids with cancer.  What a wonderful idea from a TWELVE year old!

2 days ago, I got up and read her much anticipated post:  "I am going to have a CAT scan today - at least it doesn't have needles!  NEGU"  

Then the next post I saw was this:  

***********
Dear friends...we have prayed and prayed and prayed for sweet Jessie to be healed here on earth but God's plan was to use heaven for healing. Jessie earned her wings today and is with Jesus now!!! No pain..complete vision...spreading joy. Please pray for our family as we walk out of the valley of death and towards the mountain top. We will let everyone know of her celebration service as arrangements are made. 

Please join us in carrying on her joyful spirit and Never Ever Give Up attitude. 

Much love, Erik, Stacey, Shaya and JT

***********

I don't know what happened, but somehow 'our' little Jessica Joy Rees lost her fight with cancer - but she never ever gave up - and she has touched thousands of lives, including mine.  How does one child have such optimism?  The best part was she shared it with us and encouraged other children who had the horrid 'cancer' word in their vocabulary.   

Yesterday was a sad day for me.  I had to get out of the house, so I went to a friends and she and I ran errands... I don't even think I mentioned anything about Jessie - I was not ready to share with the world a loss that hit me so hard I couldn't explain...
 
As we were driving out of town to do the errands, we came upon an accident that had just happened - apparently in the previous few minutes.  A motorcycle was on the side of the road, obviously involved in the accident.  A man was sitting on the side of the road, dabbing at his head and the van that pulled out in front of him was sitting in a driveway.  They were all waiting obviously waiting on emergency vehicles as the parties in the van were looking down the highway.  As we passed, I felt the need to go to the man - he was sitting by himself dabbing his head - but I wasn't driving and I was still in a daze trying to figure out what went wrong with Jessica that I didn't say anything.  We passed the accident by and continued on to do our errands...

And I worried... I worried about Jessica's family and about the man with the head injury that seemed okay at the time.  But having had another friend that was involved in the same kind of situation I knew it might now be so simple.   She was involved in and accident with man on a motorcycle who got to close to her car and his mirror hit her mirror - you would have to see the thousands of bikes in Asia to understand, but it was his fault - and the witnesses cleared her of any wrong going.  He seemed ok then, in fact, he was even talking but he later went into a coma and died from the head injury.  I knew that this could happen to the man sitting on the side of the road with a head injury... had someone called his family in case it was serious?  Minutes matter...

My concern for this man involved in the accident continues today.  I have no way of ever knowing how this story turns out, but it reminded me that life is so very short.  Jessie thought she was going to have a CAT scan done - but she got her angel wings instead. This man never thought he would be dealing with a potentially serious head injury and the man that hit my friend was only in a rush to get to work.  All of those lives and thousands more... just a moment away from a life changing or ending event.

We just never know... 
The thought that finally comes to mind is this:  People we don't even know touch our hearts very deeply.  Often we don't know the outcome of the circumstances or their stories, but they change our lives in little ways that affect our thoughts, or doings and prayers - and if we are lucky, they leave heart strings forever like little Jessica Joy Rees did for me.

Have a great day - cherish every precious moment.  

NEGU.   For Jessie.

If you heart is turned toward Jessie and her NEGU cause, would you mind donating a little towards her Joy Jars? 

And do you mind saying a prayer for yesterdays motorcycle man?  I am sure he could use it...  
 

Thursday, January 5, 2012

We're nearly FINISHED!

 After many long months of working on transforming the barn into a shop, we have done it!

Do you remember what we started with?

We started with a barn cat:



Who was in a barn:



We added concrete:



Then added walls, insulation and painted the floor:



Then we painted the walls:



And we are adding shelves now (safely of course):




Megan and Steve have been working super hard on them:


 Soon, we will be able to add STUFF to the shop!  Stay tuned for those pictures...
And remember that quilt I have been struggling with?  Well, I finally finished the quilt top!

 





What a bugger that has been!  Now I get to take it in and have it quilted (no I am not doing it by hand), then I add the binding and call it done!  Can't wait for that day...

So that is part of what we have been up to... busy bees are we!

Monday, January 2, 2012

MIA

MIA (Missing in Action)

Wow!  How neglectful I have been!  I just needed a break - so many thoughts going through my head and so little incentive to write.  Steve and I have been super busy doing things around the house and property.  He finally got all the insulation done and we got the walls put up in the shop.  Then the cold set in... and we haven't been able to stain the floor and paint the walls.  So everything is still sitting out in the lean to - and we need to figure out how to get the shop finished and everything back into the shop so it doesn't get nasty out in the weather.  It's gotta warm up - right?

Wow, the weather...  talk about taking some getting used to!  Yes, I love the cold weather - but living in south Louisiana and Singapore for 30+ years has warmed my blood!  Lol... It is taking a bit for me to remember to (1) layer, (2) dress in warm shoes (can you Sing girls feel the pain of my feet protesting?), (3) prepare to stay in because of the weather and (4) figure out how to maneuver this body across the ice - and soon to come - snow!  Oh I am getting there, but I sure had forgotten how to do some of these things!  We did live here in Tulsa for 18 months a few years back, but we lived in a hotel like place and we didn't have to worry about the outside stuff - here we do!

We got a critter camera (thanks Steph!) for outside - it is a camera that pics up infrared pictures of critters that pass in front of it.  Talk about DEER!  We have oodles of regular passers!  We also have seen bushels of raccoons and a skunk.  Lots of fun going out to check it every day.  The doe with twins made it through hunting season, though one of the twins is limping.  Hopefully it just turned a foot or something, but it is fun watching them grow up.  They are nearly as big as their mom now!  We have had a couple of bucks out there eating too.  Right now the red-winged black birds are eating us out of house and home so we are going to have to pause feeding the deer - cause the birds are eating all the deer corn!

Megan is doing well readjusting to living in a new home (ours), she misses the boys and Cheyenne and Jeremy, but she is doing fine.  She has a good lead on a job in Tulsa and is waiting on that to either pan out or not.  I am not making her rush on it, but we did want to get through the holidays before she started seriously looking for work.  Now that we are into the new year, I bet she gets serious about it.  We sure have enjoyed her being here!  She is a worker bee and a giggle girl - gotta love her positive attitude even though some days she gets discouraged she always bounces right back.  She figures at 20 she should be settled in life - HA!  Little does she know...

I am not sharing pictures today because I want to get this posted.  I will start again soon.  Sure did miss writing - maybe now my mind is cleared up and I can get on task again.  More later - with pictures - I promise!  Missed you - but I think I am back now...

Singapore Memory Project