Saturday, November 23, 2013

The Beauty of Haiti

 
There is much of Haiti
that is not beautiful,
but
as with anything,
you have to look for the beauty.
 
It's there,
God provides it.
You just have to see it.
 
 
 
In the flowers,
 
in the rusted tin gate,
that someone took the time to paint red.
 
 
 
And in the children,
always in the children.
 
 
In nature,
 
In the architecture,
and
in the scenery.
 
I arrived home last night.
Unfortunately,
I was hit with some bug
that I am struggling to get over.
 
I will have more
pictures
and
stories
later.

Friday, November 15, 2013

What would you rather do?

 
These projects are at opposite ends of the spectrum.
Antelope heads painted with orange camo
and


A nice, cuddly soft baby afghan.
 
Which one would you rather work on?
 
Last Saturday,
our pastor asked if I could make
"one of those yarn blankets"
before I left for Haiti
to take along for a couple that is expecting.
 
He informed me that I could work on it on the plane.
I informed him that I had a book to read.
 
Anyway,
it is almost done. 
 
Hopefully it will be done and wrapped and in my suitcase.
 
The Hallmark Christmas movies,
 early darkness,
and
 a crackling fire
are helping that project along. 


Thursday, November 14, 2013

Packing


Thanks to some awesome
benefactors,
there will be some of
God's tiniest clothed!
 
While in Haiti, next week,
we will be helping out at an orphanage
for preschool children.
Twenty one
children
in desperate need of
food,
clothing..
basics!
 
So, I packed. 

And
Kendall helped.
At four, she had a lot of questions
about where their
Mommies and Daddies were,
why they needed clothes.
"don't they even have a car?"
 
and
"Can I go with you and play with them?"

Clothing was found at
end of year prices.

Bible story books,

lots of sewing,

and flip flops for $1 each.
How can you pass that up?

Some more sewing,
and
underwear.
I found a huge duffel bag at the church,
and
I packed
and weighed
and
packed
and
weighed.
 
Add a can of formula,
some more clothing,
weigh again.
 
Getting the picture?
Finally at 43 pounds,
I decided that was close enough to fifty
and I quit.
I mean, after all,
I have another suitcase to fill yet.
 
I pull the zipper to close it...
 
AND IT WAS BROKE!!!
 
Off to the attic to find one of my bags.
 
I mean, after all, do we really need that many suitcases
and
duffel bags? 
 
Believe me,
I checked
and
double checked that zipper
before I moved everything! 
 
And,
the next suitcase? 
I have repeatedly checked that zipper!
 


Friday, November 8, 2013

Happy Three, Little Boy!

 
Wyatt is three today! 
Last night was cake and ice cream and presents and confusion!
 
Thomas the Train
The Fresh Beat Band
Bubble Guppies
and
ENERGY! 
 
What a blessing!
 
 
 
 

Thursday, November 7, 2013

We Are Going Back!

 
And I can't wait!
New Orleans!
 
The most
friendly.
welcoming,
fun,
city
that I have ever visited!
 
JWS and I both have been wanting to go back
and
yesterday morning
I heard him on the phone booking a room
and then
left it up to me to get plane tickets. 
 
And we are booked. 
 
I can't wait!
Oysters,
Bread Pudding,
Beignets,
The Music,
The Art!
The Architecture,
The History...
I love it all!


Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Steps to a Crazy Quilt Block

 
Apologizing right up front for blurry and weird pictures!
Oh and sideways pictures also!
 
I am on a real kick with these blocks right now.
 
I am blaming it on having to get rid of my wool.
You might say,
"Oh, you needed another project since you don't have the wool?"
But I say,
"I found all this material when I cleaned out the wool!"
 
Books and books of decorator fabrics.
You can ask for them at furniture stores,
or sometimes you can buy them at salvage places.
I even saw them for sale at Joann's one time
and
believe it or not,
did not buy any.
 
It took everything I have in me not to buy them
I left chanting,
You do not want to be on Hoarders
You do not want to be on Hoarders....
 
My mom's friend, Ruth is my pusher supplier.

So, here we go,
this is what I do,
I am not a quilting expert,
so it might not be the RIGHT way.
I like things totally random,
so throw away your OCD tendencies
or
if you can't, maybe a
glass of wine,
a good stiff drink
or
a pill
would help you relax...
 
I start with a square of muslin,
or
an old sheet
or really folks,
a new twin bed sheet
yields way more material for less than it would cost
buying muslin off the bolt. 

Place those two fabrics right side together anywhere on the square
and sew down to the muslin. Press apart.

Sew another piece down in the same manner.

Sometimes, I pre sew two pieces together to make a longer seam.

Placing right sides together, sew them down.
I don't always trim as I go, but sometimes you just have to see where you are.

Then I added pieces to finish off the corners.

Now, here is where I probably am not following traditional
crazy quilt rules.  
But really, are there any?  Rules, that is.
I sew this partially down and then...

Fold it under, trim, and topstitch close to the edge.

The last piece is going to be two pre sewn together
and it works out that I will have to top stitch another seam. 
It does not always work out that way, they are all different.


And there you have it,
All ready to embellish.

The top-stitched seams?
Just embroider over them.  I find that a chain stitch covers it well
and
then you can add from there. 
Lace works nicely on that seam also.  


Sunday, November 3, 2013

Photographic Moment


Great picture, right?
Everyone looking forward,
Relatively happy.
 
I have had people amazed at that.
But then,
they didn't see this...

The fight between the two year olds.
 
The non-removal of masks.
The battle over the masks.

Gracelyn telling one end of the couch how to act. 

Gracelyn explaining to the other end of the couch
how to act
and
the lobster bites the dust.  
 
But in the end, it worked.
 
Grandma might be shopping for a sectional sofa! 


Friday, November 1, 2013

Lost and Found


 
Hang on,
get a cup of coffee,
this is one of those posts.
 
Yesterday,
Halloween,
was quite the bizarre day.
 
Starting with a dead phone battery because I didn't
plug the charger in far enough,
was that an omen?
A quick trip to Amazon.com
searching for a toy tuba for Garren.
(I think that search might be futile.)
The normal morning stuff
and
the sudden realization
that I have 27 painting orders that need finished.
(The first goal was to have them done prior to the 17th when I leave for Haiti,
but realistically? I think that goal flew right out the window
on a rainbow flying pony...)
 
So, I proceed with the day.
Get to work.
 
A 6 minute, 6 mile trip to Gracelyn's school
after SOMEONE forgot to inform
me about a Halloween parade.
Anyone who has ever had the misfortune of riding with me
can relate to the ride.
I made it, she was adorable.
 
And then,
JWS reminds me that I need to find the title to my motorcycle
which I am selling.
I reply that it is in my safe deposit box at the bank
 
This leads to the event of
closing the safe deposit boxes
because we now have a gun safe,
which leads to an entire drama of whether we have two keys
to the safe deposit boxes that we have.
 
That drama was too strange for me,
with even my storytelling skills
to relate in print.
 
When the keys were finally located,
the boxes surrendered,
the contents bagged,
THERE WAS NO MOTORCYCLE TITLE!
 
So a mad search ensued.
Desks, drawers
and
the contents of the box.
 
Keeping in mind that not one bit of my being hints
at anything OCD,
and
I have had the same desk for over 20 years,
here were my findings:
6 savings bonds of Shawnee's
1 savings bond of Shelby's
My birth certificate
My marriage license
The pink slip to my 85 Monte Carlo
The pay off on the loan for my 93 Taurus
Three old Last Will and Testaments
All four girls graduation announcements
Every birthday party invitation for all seven grandchildren
for every year.
(Hey they are pictures!)
Lots of scraps of paper with quotes, scripture and poems
The hand-written eulogy that my cousins and I wrote when my aunt died.
A letter from a friend, lost too young,  received about a week before he died.
Many hand-written notes, some from people that are no longer here
(why don't we write more of those)
My one share of Dayton Fair Stock
My social security card
A copy of my passport
About a zillion post it note tablets
About two zillion address labels
Countless trip logs
(My girls were into journaling all vacations)
A couple letters from a much younger Shawnee apologizing for her actions!
Photos and cards and letters
too many to even look through yesterday
A doll that was my mother's when she was little,
several old checkbooks,
the change purse that was my great aunts
with her money still in it
but no
Motorcycle Title!
 
And needless to say,
because all this happened at work,
my today's list is double!