Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Afternoon Tea

Today we needed to slow down, take a break...get a grip on all the days that seem to be flying right past us. After a really long week last week, I have been feeling like we have been playing a constant game of catch up, and never catching up! That is so frustrating. So today i thought we needed a tea party.
We got out the teapot and teacups and saucers down, put out a quilt table topper and had a party...and you can not have a tea party with nothing to eat, so i made some mini donut muffins.
The kids were so excited, they both got dressed up for the occasion. Mitchell's version of dress up was camouflage pants and hat, and Avery put on a traditional Korean dress underneath a poncho! She even did her hair up pretty. We had so much fun being together and being silly and just being in the moment.
It is so easy to get caught up in the speed of life and not focus on the little moments with the for today we slowed down and enjoyed.
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Tuesday, September 29, 2009


First, thanks everyone for your nice words and kind thoughts about my Grandpa Bear. I am doing better, we are doing better. I am just grateful we got to spend some time with him recently, and that my kids got to know him a little better.
Today I got to spend some more time sewing with a new friend. We had a great time. It is so nice to bounce ideas and techniques off each other, and we get to be silly all at the same time. There were some slightly tricky parts in our pattern that neither of us were too sure about, but we just went for it and did it, and it worked. Less thinking is good. The above block is about 10 inches square. I have not done a log cabin like this one before but i love it!!! I am excited to get more done to show and share.
These are a few of her blocks with the Neptune fabric. I love the colors in this line....that coral really is pretty. Today I invited another friend/neighbor to sew with us and i think by the time she left she was feeling a little overwhelmed....but i know she will do great. Once she gets her hands on some pretty fabric there will be no turning back!!!
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Monday, September 28, 2009

My Grandpa

Dawson G. Herbaugh

Sadly it is not often that large families get together unless it is for a wedding or a funeral. This week, for our family, it was a funeral...a time to remember our Grandpa Bear. He passed away last Sunday. We spent the week processing, planning and traveling.

Once we were all together we were able to share stories, pictures and memories of him. I am not sure if i dare say it, but before long we all started to enjoy our time together. At first that felt strange and not quite right but i honestly think he was happy with it. Happy that all the people he loved and cared about were together.
He did not want a lot of fuss and so we upheld his wishes. We just came together and remembered him. While we were there , as we hugged and cried, laughed and joked, i was reminded that these are my people. I should never take that for granted and should try to be together with them more often. Because these are the people who love you no matter what is going on in your life. So go hug someone you love!

This poem was on the prayer card at his service

"A Beautiful Life"

A beautiful life
that came to an end,
he died as he lived, everyone's
In our hearts a memory will
always be kept
of one we loved
and will never forget.
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Sunday, September 27, 2009

Hello Fall

I decided we needed to usher fall in with an appropriately fallish dinner. After a long hard week, nearly my whole family was at my house for dinner Saturday sister and her kids, my other sister and my parents as well as my own family. I try to make something special for company, not to say that it is always a success, but i try. Last night we had maple sausage baked apples and for dessert pumpkin crumble(it is like a cheat version of pumpkin pie, so easy). I wish you could have smelled my house...the smells combined with some falling leaves, family and the cool breezy day made it perfect. This meal is so warm and cozy. Total comfort food.

Maple Sausage Baked Apples

4 lg firm Apples, use what you like
1 lb breakfast sausage...i like chicken or turkey best
1/3 c. chopped Parsley
2 T. Maple Syrup
Olive Oil

Pre-heat the oven to 375. Cut your apples in half crosswise and core with a melon baller if handy. Place cut side up in a sprayed 13x9 pan.

In a bowl combine the sausage, taken out of casings, parsley and syrup. Mix well and then scoop into apples so it mounds out of the top. Drizzle with Olive oil and then bake for 40-50 minutes. Until the apples are tender and the sausage is cooked through.

adapted from Rachael Ray everyday
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Friday, September 25, 2009

Sew and Tell, 3

When i was contemplating what would be my finish for this week it started out really ambitious(basting, quilting and binding), and then when i looked at my calendar and saw how much i had planned outside the house for this week and how busy i was going to be i thought maybe it was high time i got realistic! SO these booties were my finish. A small project but one that i really wanted to do.A friend from my husbands work just had a little girl...i wanted to bring her some food and a gift and these were it. This is the second pair i have done(the first are here), and they work up really fast and easy, and the combination's are endless. I love that they are reversible!!! i found this pattern here. They are so much smaller than you think they are going to be when you look at the pattern pieces, but they are just too cute to resist. SO go on over to Amy's and see what everyone else got done this week, and share something you did!!!
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Thursday, September 24, 2009

Quilting Together

I love quilting, it is addictive really. But one of the things i miss is having someone to quilt with. Isn't that the heart of quilting? Women have not had quilting bee's and quilting circles for ages for nothing. Right? I was lucky to meet another lady who lives nearby a few weeks ago and she feels just the same about quilting. Right away we decided to work on something together.
Yesterday was our first sewing day and it was so much fun. We had chosen a pattern and each of us are using a different moda jelly roll. Hers is Neptune by Tula Pink and mine is Wonderland by Momo.
I can not wait to see how they turn out. I love how different two quilts can be, despite using the same pattern. Hopefully we both make some more progress that i can share next week!

***I wanted to add to this, since a few of you asked that i am using a pattern called Strip this Quilt, by Green Fairy Quilts. I could not resist...and i can not wait to see how our two quilts turn out....***
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Wednesday, September 23, 2009

From Underneath the Mess

Since we started school a week or so ago i feel a bit like i have been out of touch and buried under the chaos. Not really that school is going badly but that i can't keep up with anything else anymore. The dishes pile up, i am always picking up some mess that reappears as soon as i turn around, and the school stuff....ugh, there is a constant pile of books on the table and on the floor. i suppose eventually i will get my school groove working again but for now it is what it is! I miss everyone...hopefully i will have some blog inspiration again soon...very soon! Oh, and the pile is not as bad as that right now, but pretty close. :o)

Friday, September 18, 2009

Rising Again

Cool weather always makes me want to bake!! The feeling struck me today and i started pulling out ingredients to make bread. I was going to go with my regular honey whole wheat recipe but then i thought i should branch out, do something wild...if that can even be said about bread making.
I went hunting and found a recipe in my army wife cookbook....which i never use, by the way. But, it looked good and i thought i would just go for it. I always seem to forget before i start that homemade bread making is not a short process. Always well worth it in the end but there is the hours of rising...again and again to wait for.

When isn't Nutella a perfect accompaniment for warm bread right from the oven?!?! I will make this recipe again and again. It was so much softer and lighter than my usual recipe and so so yummy! The kids loved it and had no idea that it was good for them.

Honey Oatmeal Bread

2 c. Boiling Water
1/2 c. Honey
2 T. Butter
2 t. Salt
1 c. Rolled Oats
1 pkg. dry Yeast
1/4 c. lukewarm Water
4 1/2-5 c. Wheat or White Flour( I did half and half)

In a large bowl, stir together the boiling water, honey, butter, salt and oats. Let mixture stand for 1 hour. In a small bowl dissolve the yeast in the lukewarm water. Add the yeast to the oat mixture after one hour passes. Begin stirring the flour in one cup at a time. Mix well. i started with 4 cups and added the last half in while i was kneading. Knead on a floured surface for about 5-10 minutes or until smooth and elastic. Add the flour as you work to keep it from being too sticky...up to 5 cups total. Place in a greased bowl, turn to coat the dough and cover bowl with towel. Place in warm spot until doubled(about 1 1/2 hours). Split into to balls of dough, knead again for a minute, then place in well greased loaf pans. Allow to stand until doubled(45 minutes). Bake at 350 for 40-50 minutes. For a tasty glaze, brush top with honey and sprinkle with oats.
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Sew and Tell, 2

Amy at Amylouwho is hosting sew and tell again. This week i wanted to finish something that had been sitting around in my sewing closet for months. It was a quilt-a-long that i joined back in June and never finished. oops! I did not finish it the way it was meant to be either but then it would never have been done for sure. Do you see what it is?
It's the panda quilt! I decided on a white border and black trim. I love the contrast. I have not worked with black and white before but i am sure to do it again. It really looks like a picture frame for the panda. Avery was very pleased with the result as it will be hanging in her room. I have to thank Emily at So Much For My Plans for the quilting idea. She makes cute little baby mats with this kind of quilting. It is genius!

Go join in the fun if you have something you have been meaning to finish. Or just go and check out everyone's finishes.
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Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Quilts Make Great Birthday Presents

I sure hope you did not think i forgot, mom!! This was my amazing, fantastic, super awesome birthday present from my parents.
My mom was recently at a big local flea market and she found this unfinished quilt top. It is amazing and all hand done!!! I have no idea how old it is but some of the fabrics look like feed sack prints, so 40's maybe. Where the circles overlap pone another the fabrics are all different colors and they are a different weight than the rest of the quilt. They have a linen look and feel to them.
Everyone was making jokes when i opened it because i could not wipe the look of sheer thrill off my face. I love it!! Now that brings me to this....i need HELP. Help knowing what to do with it now. I am not sure i should attempt finishing it. I am not so great at curves...i could use it for other projects as a cutter quilt. but what a shame that seems. Any of you quilting ladies out there have any ideas for me? HELP!!! I could also use some tips for cleaning it, right now it smells like old lady.
I also wanted to share the presents of one happy little man!! From us he got the digger he has been dreaming and talking about for nearly 2 years. That is a long time when you are only 5. He is also wearing his new version cowboy boots. These are definitely a step up from the pair he was wearing....hand me down brown boots trimmed in pink and rhinestones form his worn and loved now that his toes are nearly coming through the fronts!
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Tuesday, September 15, 2009

School Table Topper

I made this little table topper last week. I used a charm pack of Momma's Apron Strings fabric. The colors are so pretty and the gingham's and fruit were so fun. I love how a charm pack makes the process so much faster. I was able to get from sewn to quilting this in one day. I used some of my other favorites for backing and binding, because if i love them i am realizing i should use them. So the biding is a yellow and white ladybug print from Flutterby and the back is some leftover Wee Play floral in green that i had from another project. I was inspired by Rita and her beautiful straight line quilting so i tried one of her methods and it turned out great. I think i am discovering that stippling might not be for me, straight is so much less frustrating. The quilting mirrors the gingham's in the fabric. It was a pretty gloomy dark day outside so the light and color is not quite right...but it can't be sunny every day.
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Back to School, the Outtakes

this is their favorite first day of school picture!! Bums up!!

I asked to take his picture and then he rolled over and gave me the bum. Then as you can see, he thought it was a riot!

they were having so much fun. i love pictures of them off the ground, having fun!

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Monday, September 14, 2009

Ringing in the new School Year

Today was our official first day of school and i am thrilled to report that we all made it through, and we got all of our planned work done too!!!
We made sure to dress nice and brush our hair for a little first day photo shoot. I wanted to be sure that i started to make a point of documenting their school years in pictures. I am not sure that i have been so good about that with Avery's last two years...and since i am not sure that probably means i did not take a picture to save the moment for all of time.
silly brother and sister!!
Since Mitchie turned 5 this weekend, today was his first day of Kindergarten. I think we did good. I had encountered all the glitches with him that i thought i would....his need for first time perfection, inability to sit still and failure to willingly take instruction. Not a great combo huh? But we are going to work with it, because we have to. I got some pointers on teaching little boys form some other homeschool moms tonight that i think i am going to have to put into a mini trampoline, maybe!
Avery began 2nd grade. I think she was hesitant at first but she did awesome. She got all her work done with me and independently. She had a lot of fun, i think. I was so pleased with her handwriting in particular!!!
For school recess we needed to get a little energy out so i sent the kids to the playground where i had them run laps, spelling things for me every time they passed letter at a time.

I hope there are great things to come for our school year. Once we get through the hard first few weeks and get in our groove, i think we will be good.
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