Thursday, September 18, 2014

The Perfect Bichon

This is too funny. I wasn't even gonna blog until I came back from taking Bella to the groomers due to the lateness of the morning already (spelt in) but I got to thinking. For the last few months I have not been crazy about the cut job they have been doing on her and it's the same place she has been going to for her whole life (when in Indiana),

She has a Kardashian butt and the hair is longer on her legs than on her body. Also, she has this weird beard. Anyway I thought I would google bichon cuts and there were a million, many of which were worse than Bella's because I like the straight thick legs rather than the tapered ones so many dogs have. And then I fell in love.

This bichon ended up being too perfect and ya know why?  It's made out of felt!!!!  Don't even have to feed or water her!

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Need Some Bike Parts?

I live in my own little dream world because I got tons of emails that tell me there are all sorts of programs on both Apple and the other brands that turn pictures into drawings. Gayle sent me this link that you can do the same on your computer. Who knew? Not me!!!

Peggy knows I love found art and sent me this photo of a lion made from bicycle parts.
 It is grazing in downtown Geneva, Illinois. I was a regular visitor to that town back in the day. It was a day trip that I always looked forward to. I haven't been there in twenty (easily) years. Where did the time go?

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Yet Another App

I am on cloud nine.  My major project that I have had festering in my brain since May will be completed today.  I could have finished it yesterday but I decided to drag it out for one more day.  That calls for a spiffy dinner tonight.  I will have to put my cooking cap on.  Speaking of caps,  little Charlotte loves to have a hat on, as I have mentioned before.  This is a segue.

I totally forgot about this. Frank, our friend in California (who we are visiting the end of next week) sent me, what looked like a pencil drawing of his house. I questioned him as to whether he took up art in retirement and with the reply came yet another pencil drawing, only this time it was our sweet Charlotte.

I wanted to research it further because Frank is an Android guy and the App for his phone is 'Sketch Art' and I put it in my MAC products and it wasn't there so I will have to research that. The app certainly captures her smile!

All this came because I was cleaning out my Inbox this morning because it was embarrassingly full.

Monday, September 15, 2014

Child's Play

Based on this
model in a quilt shop (which you can buy the kit for $100) and then with Peggy bringing this  table fort

last weekend to my house that her boys played in over thirty years ago, I decided to make a card table house.  First up came the urgent call to G to stop at some store on his way home from work to purchase a card table.  Then there was the frantic rush to JoAnns to get the supplies.

My sis and I decided on pre quilted fabric that had fabric on both sides of the batting.  All the other stuff was in my cart and then I realized that the red pre quilted yardage  I wanted didn't have enough on the bolt.  I chose pink felt instead.

I did the two windowed walls last weekend and when my company left I ran to JoAnns for more green felt for the bottom.  That was where it stopped.

This is how the side panels looked (without the green grass) Sunday afternoon.

This is what the inside of the window looks like.

I cut out this grass to put all around the bottom for stability.  I bought drapery weights (the white thing on the grass) and tacked them down at the edge of the grass.

This got pinned on at the bottom of the walls so the weight was just past the bottom of the wall.  The blades of grass are then hand sewn down (tv work).

That is where I kinda dropped the ball.  I know the girls won't be using it any time soon so the rush really wasn't necessary.  Now I am working at it a little each night.  I still haven't decided how to do the front door.  That will be next.

Sunday, September 14, 2014


It is still cold here. I am not complaining because I would rather put on a sweater than put the air conditioning on. It is supposed to get up into the low 60's and that a good thing because G will not have to golf in his snow suit.  I think he resorted to Gortex yesterday.

Bella is trying to get used to the cool weather but she is a quilt girl at heart so she likes to bundle up.

I  would love  to show you what I look like but you would be so grossed out.  (I took pictures tho').  I have been sporadically treating my face to a frozen vegetable assortment but so far it has varied little.  The thing weird is that it doesn't hurt a drop; it just looks hideous.  We have a wake today and a funeral tomorrow that I will definitely not be attending with G.  I am not even walking the dog.  It's just very temporary but in the interim  I don't want to scare off small children.  As it is, G is having difficulty looking at me.

Saturday, September 13, 2014


I can barely see out of my eye sockets.  My face is completely swollen due to a rosacea treatment I had yesterday.  I could quilt yesterday but I don't know if I can today.  What a difference a day makes!

It's 50ยบ outside and we literally have no beach due to the waves being so big.  They are smashing all the way to our sea wall.  Today winter clothing is in order.  It looks like an angry ocean out the back windows.

My girlfriend send me these photos of women taking driftwood that they found

and gathered and together they constructed these beautiful

driftwood horses.
They are elegant and graceful.
It's nice to think that they are made from natures leftovers and repurposed

into works of art.

Friday, September 12, 2014

Taking Care Of Business

Off to the doctor!  Just a derma appointment in far stretches of the continent.

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Another Baby

There isn't a lot going on in my studio lately except for my secret assignment. It's coming along very nicely and I hope it will be finished in the next two weeks. I have other fish to fry.

 I just got an email from my girlfriend Peggy and this was included in the email.
Her son and daughter in law are expecting their second child and this is how they found out the sex
of the baby.  They received a little box that looked generic from the outside and the doctor said,  'If you open this box you will know the sex of your future offspring.  If you don't want to know, just put it in a closet and open it after the baby is born.'  Obviously they opted to know and they are looking forward to a little sister for their 2 1/2 year old son, Kieran.

Is that not adorable?

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Brain Farts

I have a new web master that is updating my website and keeping me on point.  Unfortunately that means tons of questions and opinions, all of which I have none.  It makes me tired to think of technical stuff.  My brain is not wired for that.

There is a lot of unsettling stuff going on.  My house is 23 years old and this is the year to get a jump on updating stuff, like windows and doors so that it would not be all of a sudden be in disrepair.  I am tired of talking windows, doors and just want it to be over.  We got the final estimate for everything I wanted
and it was over the moon, so now I have to rethink everything.  I just want to take a nap.

It's raining and Bella and I are going back to bed.  Yeah!

Tuesday, September 09, 2014

Purchasing Power

Pretty much the first thing my sis says when we get together is 'what do you want me to find for you?' This means searching the internet for something that I would have tried to find in between now and the last time we got together.  It is like I save her that job just as I save jobs for my brother Bill to do when he comes to visit.  They like to be busy.

And sure enough there is something I wanted to find and also something that she wanted me to get.  I noticed that I have a crack in my iPad since last weekend and my sis said it wouldn't have broken when it fell ( unbeknownst to me) if I had a cover.  I now have a beautiful cover.

I have no idea why this picture came out pink when it is violet color and not remotely as it was photographed.  Oh, and I went for a stylus too.  These came from Amazon Prime.

I also got these grinders.  I already have one and love it.  It has pepper in it and along with it I am still using the sea salt McCormick grinder bottle from the grocery.  These are Kuhn Rikon brand and I plan on using one here for salt and the other two will go to Florida for the same purpose.  These came from Kohls.  They were cheaper even tho' I had to pay a bit for shipping.  I am a sucker for a bargain.

Monday, September 08, 2014

The Business Of Quilting

The girls were very busy this weekend. Except for stopping a couple times a day to regain our strength, we plowed through projects. This is just a fraction of the things that were worked on this past weekend. As is per usual, my work is a double secret and therefore I can't share it with you under penalty of death. One day I can show you.

Jean Ann did this quilt in completion (as far as she had supplies to do it) for her grand daughter.

Then she changed tactics and worked on something for one of the grandsons.  Check out her lovely arm.

This is a start to something that Peggy started.  Ignore the other two quilts under the triangular start to a lovely quilt.  We were too lazy to clear the design wall in between showings.

Peggy also framed this panel of Mickey with piano key borders.

She once again brought her little 9 patch squares to work on.  Each of those little squares comprised of nine squares measure 1/2 inch completed.  Yikes!

Anne really needed this break from home life as she has a lot on her plate and needed girl time.  She finished up the borders on this triangle quilt.

She also worked on these linear blocks

and somehow managed to sew all these two inch blocks together.

Mike cut out and pieced most of this black, white and grey piece for a fund raiser to be raffled off when it is complete.

She also finished making and tearing off the backing paper of these paper pieced dogs she made for her favorite dog, Chai, who ate 12 cookies and spanish peanuts on Friday night and was not feeling all too well for the remainder of the weekend.  Oh well.

Sunday, September 07, 2014


My girlfriends and I watched the sunset last night.  Double click on it and you can see the Chicago skyline to the right.

This is the sunset of the night before

and the night before.  It's tough to live here, as you can see.

Oh, I hear the girls are awakening.

Saturday, September 06, 2014

The Sweat Shop

I spent most of Thursday and yesterday morning harvesting basil for the last time this season. The majority of the time was spent picking the leaves off the stems and the washing and drying of the leaves. I measure 8 cups per batch before I wash them because they have some Seinfeld shrinkage and the measurement is no longer accurate after the shrinkage. I bagged up the finished pesto right after my girlfriends came. All done for the year. The sweat shop was a bit sweaty yesterday. It was unbelievably humid and for some reason, yet again the air conditioning wasn't working properly. We did the fan thing and we were still yuck. We were happy for the storm that rolled in when the sun set.

Friday, September 05, 2014

First Day Of School

I can't believe that Violet Jane is going to school already! Yesterday was her first day.

Here she is posing under her school's plaque and here

she is showing how happy she is to be going.  I am in awe at how fast their little lives grow.  I don't remember her dad aging this fast.  She's 3?  I remember the day she was born like it was yesterday.

Okay, enough of V.  Chuck is not yet in school but she is still a hoot.  Here she is this past weekend
right out of bed with a bottle of whole milk and five or so critters that she sleeps with and will not leave the bed without.  Oh, yeah, and my lookalike, give or take 63 years.

My friends Anne, Jean Ann, Peggy and sis Mike are coming this morning for the weekend.  I better go and brush my teeth!

Thursday, September 04, 2014

Out With The Girls

Having my brother

here for four days was grand.  Together with G, they hit the golf course several times.  That made golf widows of Claudia that first day before the house filled with family.  What to do we asked ourselves?

Lunch on the water with a little day drinking mixed in.  A margarita with no salt or ice for me and a Bud Light for Claudia.
The view from our seating was of ducks constantly ducking under water

and I am assuming they are diving for food.  I had no idea that their behinds opened up like a baby chick wanting food from it's mother.  It's pretty comical when there are a bunch of them all doing it.

Even Bella liked to watch them.  Girls outing was a success!

Wednesday, September 03, 2014

Summer Fun

I have had a helluva time getting into Blogger. It took me three days to resolve the reason I couldn't access my blog. Long story and a boring story to boot. Little hands on the computer this past weekend may have had something to do with it. I'm just sayin'.

 I have jumped in and made some good headway on the secret project I have committed myself to. It feels to get it rolling. I actually started when my company left on Monday.   I am gonna get back to it in a little bit.  I have my quilter friends coming for three days this weekend and I can work on the designing aspect of a project with distractions so I hope to get the project far enough along to be able to start doing some quilting, which is a no brainer.

Here's a quick look at the holiday weekend.

Charlotte seems to like to wear her hat at all times.  She would be a good addition
to Downton Abbey.  She's a sweetie and a bit of a grunter.  Why say words when a grunt will
do?  She will be 18 months in November so she will probably start with the words by then.

Violet is 3 going on 15.  She is tons of fun and never stops!

Chai was sick the day before she got here but made a speedy recovery.  She has a nose full of
sand in this picture.
There was lots of water and sand sporting going on.  Evan is in the water and Maggie and Violet are on the Lily Pad with a very large tube on it as well.  I don't know why; I just watch.

Friday, August 29, 2014

An Early Start on The Long Weekend

The last couple times Violet was here she insisted on an office. The first spot she took over was my computer desk and that didn't turn out so good, according to my computer. So then we moved her to the dining room table, but with her love for sharpie markers and post its,  
I watched as she turned in her chair with an open marker, and pictured purchasing all new dining room chairs due to marker lines on the one chair's fabric.

I solved the problem by going to my friend Amazon Prime and getting her a desk of her own.  My brother Bill wasn't here ten minutes when he assembled it (it took all of five minutes).  The desk top is also a chalk board.  I can't wait until she notices it.
I finally got around to making my two picks from this months FN magazine.  The first one, which we devoured last night was the Tomato Corn Custard Tart.  This is a pick of the pie crust having it's first bake, lined with cooked garbanzo beans as pie weights.

I cut the tomatoes a couple hours early so they could really dry out and not make the tart soggy.

Here it is right out of the oven and
here it is after it rested for a few minutes and was half eaten.  It held together very nicely.  We had it with brats on the grill with grilled onion and toasted buns.  Yum.

Today or tomorrow I will be making my second pic from the magazine, Peach upside down cake.