Friday, December 28, 2007

Coffee Ring Day

Here is a picture of the (partial) results of Coffee Ring Day.
It was a good one this year. Tradition has it that I get up and
start baking, and DH brings home pizza for dinner. There was
a time he'd trundle the children off to a movie or some such thing,
as eight little hands helping Mama makes for a slow, long day
of it when there are this many goodies to bake. Now they can
actually help!
I learned from my mother, she learned from hers . . .

No, they do not taste like coffee.

No, there is no coffee in them.

They are so named because, for the most part, one would imbibe
a fresh hot cuppa along with a generous slice of ring, which is like
a lovely rich cinnamon roll, only so much better, it's what cinnamon
rolls WISH they could be! Some people call them tea rings;
however, my Swedish ancestors shudder at the thought of tea.
Phaaa! Coffee drinkers, every last one of them. Kaffe. C'mon,
people, didn't you ever read Pippi Longstockings??
Somehow, these did not all get delivered before Christmas, so there
are about five strays still in the deep freeze. Coffee rings, not ancestors.
Whether they ever make their way to their intended recipients
remains to be seen . . . once again, coffee rings, not ancestors . . .

Friday, December 07, 2007

Chervil in Kansas City

My DH and I really like Bernaise sauce. Yes, it may very
well be a heart attack and new hips waiting to happen, but
really, it is so delicious! Ever since devouring it madly for
the first time almost a year ago (that would be at
Chris and Dawn's lovely wedding. Beautiful reception,
fantastic food, Happy Anniversary!!), I keep thinking,
"I'll surprise DH and whip up a batch." But YOU try
and find chervil in this midwestern town! NONE of the
major grocery chains carry it. For cryin' out loud, if it's
in the Betty Crocker, it's got to be pretty basic, yes?
Everyone has tarragon, even WAL-MART had white
peppercorns, but chervil? Nope. Nobody.

Really, it would make a lovely dish for Christmas, so you
know the saying, "you can find anything on ebay!"

Yep, that's right, I just bought chervil on ebay. Works for
me. Saved driving around, blank stares from befuddled
clerks ("How do you spell that??"), and just a general
frustration best avoided during the holyday season.

This tops off a fine cookie day. Ahh, cookie day.

That's a whole 'nother post . . .

Friday, November 30, 2007


I don't know who invented/thought this up, but Freecycle
is the best! Oh, my, I love to post an offer for a big box of
whatever mess has been lurking in my basement for who-

have multiple people e-mail and say, "pick me, pick me!"

leave said box by the drive,

and then the Freecycle Fairies come along, unseen, and prance
away with their newfound treasure, leaving me shelf space,
peace of mind, and a delightful sense of freedom . . .

*******disappear*******poof*******gone away!!!*******

Seriously, a landfill is empty thanks to the freecycle fairies.
And that's just from the stuff from MY house! What's in

Monday, September 03, 2007

dream/prayer journal

I finally had this long enough that I'm able to happily give it away;
sometimes it's like that, you know. Sometimes there's something
really special about something you've made, and it's hard to let it
go. And sometimes, maybe you aren't supposed to let it go? But I'm
happy with this now, and donated it to the local Apple Festival,
which benefits the Baptist Children's Home. So that's a good thing.
But now I'm thinking, "okay, what if no one bids on it?
How embarrassing will THAT be???" If I hadn't put my name on the
form, then no one would have even know it was from me. Rats.

On the other hand, maybe it will do really well, right? I think it
would be better to think along these lines, yes? We'll see what
happens Saturday! :)

UPDATE--not only did they bid, this won first prize in the "Unusual" category!  :)

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Sarah's birthday collage

Here's a birthday collage for sweet Sarah
on the occasion of her 15th. Faith helped
me with some of the composition; there's
Bible verses and such on the back.

People are foolish.
God is good.
Never give up.

Friday, July 27, 2007

Altered Book Club Offering

So I joined an altered book club, and it's been great for making me
go make something. I mean really, if you've committed to having
someone else's pages done, it would be pretty bad to just show up
and say, "Oops, sorry! Didn't bother to even open your book . . ."

So here's my latest artistic endeavor. The theme is supposed to be
"Home or Insanity." So of course, I switch it around--not on purpose,
I just glued the dictionary pages on the wrong sides! So the insanity
side features a vellum pocket sewn on, tags bearing proverbs stapled
with red rick-rack, and some crazy looking broads. Two have literally
lost their heads. The "Home" side is supposed to appear more peaceful,
and has a door to open, revealing a collage in the style of Claudine
Hellmuth. Yep, been reading her books, couldn't help myself!

Remember, you choose . . .

Friday, May 04, 2007


Well. I don't post often anymore. Hmm.
Busy with real life, yes? The eldest is
graduating, and that is taking some of my
brain, as is homeschooling the rest.

Algebra bites, still, even after all these
years, and there are two more coming up in
the ranks. Ugh. Fourteen is a hard enough
age as it is, but to add Algebra to the mix!

Got to meet Julie's beautiful granddaughter,
and see Julie Oolie herself all the way from
Alaska. That was such a surreal thing, to be
standing there looking at her while she was
talking. I really wish we had gotten to know
each other better and spend more time together
while she was HERE! And she has some of the
most interesting friends. (I don't mean myself.)

Shakespeare ATC for swap-bot swap. I really like
how these turned out; printed on vellum, over
watercolor background, and torn paper script from
Prospero's speech at the end of The Tempest.
Which is one of my favorites.

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

bag swap and Mi Ranchito

Here's the cute bag for the tiny bag swap full
of goodies--my person is a knitter, so I hope
she likes her fiber and stuff.

Okay, Scott and I are becoming a little obsessed
with Mi Ranchito. It has the BEST Mexican food
EVER. (Sorry, Chelly's! Actually, Chelly's beans
and veggie quesadilla's still win out in those
departments.) We ate there yesterday for lunch,
and they were just barely slow in getting us set
up with menus and such, so they gave us free
espinaca dip.

I have a chip problem anyway (as in, chip-pig I am),
so that was bad. Didn't even eat half my lunch.
Couldn't even eat half the spindip. Everything
we've had so far is excellent. We were talking
about it again this morning. Seriously, we need
help . . .

Saturday, March 03, 2007

altered book club

Went to a thing at Stamper's Ink today, thanks to
Kris (that girl is going to get me in trouble!), and
joined an altered book club.

Learned a cool and easy technique, worked on altering
some puzzle pieces, and generally visited and had a
good time. Once a month. I can do this. They're
working on round robin altered books, and then they
show-and-tell each month. Really pretty stuff!

The store is right up the street from our store, so
I'm sitting here at our shop using the road runner.
Wow, it's fast, compared to at home! Was hoping dear
husband would take me out to dinner, and it was
looking pretty good--close to closing, only one
person in the store--and then people started coming
in. As in, lots of people. Ugh. I'm hungry!

Thursday, March 01, 2007

1x1 swap images site

Look, I can't figure out how to insert the images.

Okay, yes, I click the spot and type in the site
and then it shows up in the draft and preview, but
not the published. So just cut and paste--it's
worth it, these are so fun!

I'm thinking about joining a fabric tag book swap.
It may be closed, but THAT would be fun . . .

Friday, February 23, 2007

1x1 swap site

Here's the web site with all the awesome 1x1
swaps on it--wow, they're so tiny. Angie
went to a lot of work with this swap, bless
her little heart!

Okay, apparently the "insert link" thing
doesn't like me, so cut and paste . . .

Wednesday, February 21, 2007


Okay, this is part of why the
whole swap-bot thing is so
addictive. Lookat this
wonderful candle I got
today in the mail!
It was from Kristin in
Texas, and she made it
herself. In fact, she
has a home based business
making such candles.

I'll bet her house doesn't
smell like stinky boys and
dirty dogs . . .

Her website is

I'm going to check it out! :)

Tuesday, February 20, 2007


I think I have a preoccupation problem with
this particular fabric. This bag is for a
swap-bot swap, something like "Anything I can
do," along those lines, anyway. Since I'm all
into sewing up these nifty bags of all shapes
and sizes, here it is. Well, there it was--it's
off in the mail today, along with some of that
wonderful rosemary/peppermint lip balm that the
brilliant Denise of Life Thyme Botanicals makes.
Okay, no, I didn't make the lip balm, but really,
don't you want to share the good things you know?

Seriously, look at the fence, and the flowers,
and the bits of gold here and there. This fabric
is so dreamy, I love it! Can't imagine drapes
from it, but it makes for a fantastic tote.

We're doing secret sisters in my Sunday School class,
and we're supposed to be secret for a whole year,
so it's killing me not to make something for my
girl! UGH! They would totally know it was me if
I sewed something, or altered something, or made a
candle, or soaps, or bath fizzies. *gritting of teeth!*
I think I'm going to just make stuff and set it aside,
and then have that be my last big good-bye,
reveal-it's-me gift.

Monday, February 19, 2007

Book Club

Several years ago a friend invited me to join her book club.
Bear in mind that pretty much the only books I'd read for
many years at this point in time were school related--either
mine, or for my children. Not a lot of new literature going
on in my world; pretty much nothing past the 18th century.

Thanks to Women On the Loose (the aptly named aforementioned
book club), I have since been introduced to many wonderful
and not-so-wonderful books, some of them actually written
by authors who are still alive! Some couldn't be classified as great
literature, but they sure are fun to read. I'm all in for a cheesy
mystery now and again.

But today I started Their Eyes Were Watching God. This book
has re-reminded me why I love reading. The language and imagery
is so rich and beautiful, I stop and re-read sentences just to savor
the sound of it in my head. It's a gorgeous book. Now, I'm only
about a quarter of the way through, so if it turns ugly on me, this
opinion may change. It immediately reminded me of Shakespeare,
just a different time period, and a different dialect.

Umm, and it's not a play.

Saturday, February 10, 2007


So I was reading a friend's daughter's blog, and
she said:
"i know there are people out there who are super women all the time,
including when they are pregnant, i guess im just not one of them."

YES, I say! I am NOT ONE OF THEM! I am proud to be
among those who freely and unashamedly sleep at night,
and wholeheartedly embrace an occasional nap. Since
when did doing 20 different things at once and going
all the time equate with self-worth, or validate your
spot on the planet?

Even Jesus took a nap when he got tired.

I'm NOT condoning outright laziness, just saying, for
cryin'out loud, people, take time to smell the roses.
Don't just plant them, prune them, paint a picture of
them, and then make soap from their petals! Okay, yes,
I did those, but what's it worth if we don't ENJOY them?
Like our children, they are only here for a season, yes?
Enjoy them, love them, spend time with them.
Them being the roses in your life.
Your loved ones.
Doing things that nurture your spirit.
Being still and knowing God.

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

Another bag . . .

Here's one of the three bags I just finished
from this fabric. They were recycled from
a dress of Mindy's--she said, "Here, make me
one of those bags!" So I did, and one for
Faith, and one for myself. A nice little
Valentine's Day something, yes? Faith's is
lined with pink, and has a very lovely pink
button from her Great-Grandma's stash.

I'm reading The Excellent Wife, by Martha
Peace, by the way, and it is fantastic. A
kick in the pants, maybe, but fantastic.
I love my husband!

Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Double Digits and Don'ts

Well, it's official. The baby of the family has
hit double digits. The big one-oh. *sigh*

That's it. No pics, nothing. Not sure what to

Only 2 of the 4 went to church tonight; Jordan
was supposed to start the True Love Waits series
tonight. Fortunately, at 14, he's not feeling
the pressure yet. What a blessing; I know others
aren't as fortunate. We had the abbreviated
version of TLW--don't do it until you're married.

Really, God tells us things for a reason. We may
not always get it, but there's a reason. We may
find out the hard way, but we'll figure it out
sooner or later. We may not want to admit it, we
may not like it, we may pout and whine and want
our way, but the "don'ts" are there for our own
benefit. It would behoove us all to not be
so stubborn and foolish as to think we can get
away with sin, just because we want to do what
we want to do, and don't like to admit that there's
an authority higher than our own.

Yes, I'm finished. I shall step down from the
soapbox (and perhaps not fall on my face??) ;)

Friday, January 19, 2007

teeny tiny swaps

Here are some 1x1
swaps for a yahoo
group I joined.
These were way
more fun to make
then I'd originally
anticipated. It was
one of those times
when I really needed
to be making
wasn't motivated to
do anything. Swaps
give me that deadline,
and make me feel
obligated to finish a

So, there you go.

The two with the old filmstrips are a little dark, and I don't know if
everyone will appreciate my sense of humor (did theDodo sing? the
felted heart in heartfelt, the frog stamp on the card from the frog
closure used in sewing), but that's the risk you take with swaps. You
can't even appreciate the textures and such without holding these in
your hand--I really like incorporating layers, and something more
tactile than smooth paper. It was fun to use all the goodies; the
ephemera, embossing stuff, the ribbons and trims I drool over,
microbeads, Prima flowers, all the inks . . . contented sigh.
I really like my toys!!

I'm going to start a series illustrating lines from literature. The time
present and time past swap was the first go, but it's really a little
small for what's inside my head. We'll see what happens . . .

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

The Star Wars is out the door . . .

Well, it's almost out the door. It's on ebay now,
as in, five cases FULL of figures. Man, what a stash!
I still have my brand-new Kenner bags, but the rest
of this stuff is soon-to-be someone else's. It's been
fun to help sort it all out, especially with the boys'
help. Okay, in all honesty, I did absolutely NONE
of the sorting, only the picture-taking. Hey, they
got all into matching the weapons to the figures,
etc. And let's face it, as 9 and 14 year-old boys,
they're more up on all the names than I will ever be.

It inspired a couple of movie nights--it had
been a long time since we watched the original, and
I forgot how much I really like that movie! Jordan
kept "shushing" me, so apparently I talked too
much. But seriously, how can Princess Leia have
a British accent in only one scene? Like no one is
going to notice that?? C'mon! Shush yourself,
Jman! ;)

Saturday, January 13, 2007

Things I Found On My Floor

Here it is, the now infamous
weaving, done quite a bit back.
Yes, it is, indeed, comprised
entirely of
Things I Found On My Floor.
(Just be thankful that the
bathroom floor was excluded
from this foray into the
world of experimental "art.")

Seriously, with four children, a
husband, and numerous animals,
there was never a lack of material.
And I honestly limited myself to
things NOT on the art-room floor,
because that would have been, in
my opinion, somewhat cheating.

People suffering from allergies to
dogs, cats, chickens, rabbits, corn,
or peanuts are advised to NOT
handle this, ehem, work of art. :)

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

I love this purse!

One of "my" Girl Scouts came to
the last meeting all jazzed to show
me the awesome cool purse she
had made; it was, indeed,
awesome and cool! Even better,
she told me where to find the
directions, and I got to make one
my own self. I've been holding
onto this fabric, wanting to make
something, and this was perfect.
It's a vintage drape fabric I think.
The lining is from linen skirt that
my dear children said made me
look like a bag lady, and the button
is from my grandma's button can.
I am very, very pleased. DD got a
sewing machine for her owntee
doentee self for Christmas, and is
champing at the bit to try many
projects. First, we'll need to finish
off the quilt she started--the top is
already done.

It feels so good to be making
something again. Julie from
Alaska called the other day, and
man, it was nice to be able to tell
her I was actually doing
something. Actually joined another
swap, just for that proverbial kick
in the creative pants. We'll see how
those turn out, but so far, so good.
Happy New Year to me, eh?? ;)

Tuesday, January 09, 2007

This is ridiculous!

So, I pretty much should have known there was no way
I'd post on this thing on an even somewhat regular basis!
Oh, well, this is the way my life goes. I am very well
intentioned, but very slow.

Thanksgiving was unusual, spent in the hospital with my
da, who had a slight stroke. Dear me, but those poor
nurses deserve combat pay who must deal with the not-
so-cooperative patient who is my father. He's fine now;
just a little slurred speech, which will hopefully be helped
by continuing speech therapy.

Christmas was lovely, really and truly lovely. Spent a
long holiday baking and preparing and shopping and
wrapping, and it was all wonderful. "My" side of the
family was here for Eve, and we went to DH's side
for the Day. The decorations are all still up--DH wants
everything up early, early, like at the very latest by
Thanksgiving, preferably by Halloween. I like to keep
everything decorated for a long bit afterwards, to just
enjoy it all. Ummm, and we're actually having a
Christmas brunch this Saturday morning, so yes, we
tend to prolong the holiday as long as possible! It
should always be Christmas in our hearts, yes??

Merry Christmas!