My Favorite Books

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Fun with my Ipod & food, of course!

Last night I was playing around with my Ipod and decided to just see what other free Apps were available. So I downloaded the app called CamWow and 'wow' is it ever a hoot to play with! There are 12 different ways you can take pictures by stretching or distorting a photo. I started with the 'sketching' one and Bob and I had a blast taking pictures. This picture is in the living room! Looks just like a drawing doesn't it! Of course, tonight being Wed. is 99 cent margarita night so I took a picture in the sketching pattern and the 'real' drink! Yum...these are so good as was the food..more on that later.

Do you recognize my beaded bird above?? Cool isn't it!

This next picture is using the 'mirror image'...this was shot looking at the coffee table and into the kitchen!
Yes, we had too much fun with this free app! For those with the Iphone or Ipod, go and download it and play!

Now on to food...this was our appetizer we had..cheese and meat (yes, I ate the meat too!!). It's sooooo good!!! Yes, the margarita glasses were empty!

and check out what was waiting on our front door step when we got home!!! My sweet daughter sent me my Nonpareils (which I just love in dark chocolate!!) and carmels with sea salt!!! Bob and I each had one!! OMG!!! So good!!! Thank you, Dawn!!!! I didn't know there were Sander's stores still around Michigan!!!

Bob and I are going to watch Survivor now!! And 'think' about how much we have to exercise tomorrow to work off our dinner, drinks and candy!

Tuesday, March 29, 2011


Isn't this fabric postcard beautiful! My friend, Mary, sent it to me. Mary attended, along with our friend, Carol, a workshop by Judy Perez (check her blog/web site out if you don't know of Judy). Had I been in Michigan, I would have attended with them, as Judy is one of my favorite artists. Anyway, Mary made a larger piece in the class using a tea bag, stamping, watercolor, etc. and cut it up to make fiber post cards! I just love this butterfly/post card and so glad she sent me a piece!! I think it's beautiful! Thank you again, Mary!!!

At night, I've been beading away on my Feb. BJP bird. It took me 4 hours yesterday to finish the 3 darker green areas on the wing. I'm using #15 seed beads so that makes the process a little slower than I would like. I have to outline the wing on the left tonight and then I'll finish filling in the left wing..that should only take two nights of watching the boob tube!

I've been working hard on the group quilt piece for Tommy Fitzsimmons and I've just about finished with all my applique work and hope to be ready to quilt it by Thursday. I want to get it in the mail by the beginning of next week. Wish I could show you my progress/pictures but can't do that until all 16 of us have finished our 'slice' and Tommy has put the slices together. We have no idea what the finished picture looks like and only have our 'piece' (1/16th of the picture!) to go on! Bob came home and was very surprised at what I've finished and I even got a "wow" from him! That makes me feel good as he's my 'critic'!

So we're on countdown to when we are leaving for up north. Right now we're thinking the 16th of April but if there's still snow in Michigan we will stay longer! Fine with me but we do have to be back the last week of April as Nick is making his 1st Communion! That's a big event I don't want to miss!

We had lots of rain on Monday so Bob and I did some tooting around town..figures we'd pick a rainy day! No rain today but it was over cast and only got up to 75 today! It's been in the 80's the past few weeks so it felt quite cool today! HA Wed. we're going to El Torre's for our margarita night with Carol and Tony and Thursday I'm going to our Pizza, Pizza class! It's tough being a retiree but someone has to do it and I'm so glad it's me!

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Beading and a boat ride

I'm making progress on my BJP for February. Almost finished outlining all the different areas. I'm also working on another small quilt but I can't show pics of it until this summer. It's a 'slice/group quilt' project that Tommy has organized. It's due the 1st of May so I want to get it finished or at least all but the quilting before we leave Florida. The piece for this project is quite small (around 6" x 10") but sure is a challenge! More on that this summer!

Now I know what to do with my empty wine bottles! Actually, this display is in front of Stumpknockers Restaurant (where we ate after our river cruise this past Thursday). Pretty cool isn't it!

The river ride on the pontoon boat ride was fun and our 'captain' sure was a talker! He's been doing this for over 15 years so he certainly knows all the spots on the river for showing his clients the different animals and foliage.

Check out these rocks...I loved all the texture along the river and you can see how low the river is.
This was a rock that 'mother nature' shaped to look just like a alligator!

Look closely now!! There's a 3ft alligator sitting in the middle of the weeds. There was a larger one but some folks were fishing and frightened him off.

One of many blue heron we saw along the river. They look just like a statue until we got closer then they would fly away.

This was a little visitor waiting to get in the restaurant!

As were these critters! They were all over the place but kind of cute don't you think!

Another cypress tree and again, note the water level mark on the tree! They really need the rain here, which is suppose to come next week sometime.

More texture!

This was a tree that fell over in this man's yard about 40 years ago. He built the cement wall and placed concrete under the branch (lower right side). This has enabled the tree to live! This tree is suppose to be over 100 years old. Wouldn't that be neat to have this view in your back yard! I love this tree.

This should have been the first picture. It's where we got on the boat! But since we had to get off the boat, I guess it's fitting for the last picture as well!
We did have a great afternoon and dinner after was SO good! Deep fried shrimp was on my plate and Bob got the trio (fried catfish, fried shrimp and crabcake!). YUM!!

This coming week I'm going to take another cooking class at 'The Dish'! It's called 'Pizza, Pizza, Pizza'! So guess what we're going to cook!! I'm really looking forward to this class as well.
Tomorrow I hope to at least finish my design and elements for the group quilt. Then I have to figure out how I'm going to put it together! Weather has still been in the high 80's but always a breeze! Thank need for the air condition - yet!

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Florida doings!

Just to give my family and friends back in Michigan some sunshine.....this is a geranium plant in front of the house here in Ocala.

Everything is so green and the flowers have been in bloom for a few weeks now. Each time we take Mandy on her golf cart ride at night I've forgot to take the camera. Some of the yards are just beautiful with the flowers and landscape.

The next picture is a Bottle Brush tree. You have to click to see a larger picture of the flowers but if you want to get through this post quickly, just go to the next picture!
This is a closeup of the Bottle Brush flowers. I love this tree in Larry's (our 'landlord'!) yard.
Now on to more sunshine. Yesterday we met MJ, Ron, Ian and his friend Zack (in the green shirt) for dinner in Clermont. We've been meeting at the same restaurant for the past four or five years. It's a sports bar but we always sit outside on the deck and watch the water. Of course, we make grandpa walk down to the pier and get our picture taken. One of the fisherman on the pier was kind enough to take this picture of us. We're all smiling because we just ate a great meal!
Just another shot from the pier. We had a really nice visit with the kids. Too bad we both have to travel all the way to Florida to meet up! Kids live in Indiana which really isn't that far but it's hard to get 'you know who' to travel!
And now on a sad note.....for my readers/followers you may remember my story of Sybil the Siamese Fighting fish (post is here). Well, Sybil passed away yesterday. I don't really know how old he/she was but Amber bought him last winter so I'm assuming he was born towards the end of 2009. I did make a little coffin for Sybil and buried him yesterday.

My DIL said Sybil did have a good home and even got to travel to Florida! That's more than most fish, right! I have to admit Bob and I really enjoyed having Sybil! He was so animated when we would walk in the room....hence, we fed him 5-6 times a day! That may have contributed to his demise from what I understand. I've read and talked with 'fish' experts and they say only feed once a day and one day a week do not feed them. You can even go 2 or 3 days without feeding. Hmmmmmm I'm a grandma! I feed everything/everyone! Bob did say "no more fish!". OK..I won't. Nick just got a spike lizard and my fear is that will be coming to the house next! Wonder what Bob will say about that! He said no fish..he didn't say anything about lizards!

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

My week so far

Before I show some of my playing, if you like biscotti but don't care for the hard texture, try these!! OMG!! These Tusconi's are wonderful!!! I bought the double chocolate to try and yum! But this week I bought a box of the almond chocolate and now they are my favorite!! I saw on their web site they have a raspberry chocolate but I don't see them in the store yet. They are a soft form of biscotti and just yummy!! The chocolate is really good chocolate and not a yucky chocolate or fake chocolate! and the biscuit is like a soft shortbread cookie! So run, right now and pick up a box! They make a great snack in the evening! OK, a good snack anytime!

Lesson 3 of Jane LaFazio's Mixed Media class is this week. Only problem, I'm a bit behind but I did try to catch up somewhat today. I did post some pictures of some painted watercolor paper I did a week or so ago but the pics here are all painted fabric. The fabric below was painted/stamped then layered with some gesso stamped leaves and then tissue paper that I did some doodling on.
This piece has some decorative tissue paper and some tissue paper with doodling on and colored with some inks. Bob really liked this piece..I'm still not sure what else I'll do with either of these...I know I need to do more but I just have to let them sit and rest! I need to post to our class forum and get Jane's advice!

These are some more of my pained fabric pieces.

These are some wall paper samples that I painted and hope to use in my online class.
I most likely won't get to doing any more work on my class lessons. We're meeting the kids on Wed. 60 miles from here and on Thursday we're going on a river cruise (it's only a 1 hour cruise - it's a small river!) and then dinner after with 3 other couples. Should be fun the next two days! And with our temps still in the 80's just perfect weather for being a Florida tourist! Darrin just SKYPED us and showed us the snow they're getting in Michigan! It was only 32 and temps are dropping to 17! Yikes! Guess I won't complain about it being so warm! Shame on me!

Sunday, March 20, 2011

She's back...

First, I must say Great Job to Michigan for getting as far as they did in the March Madness! The pic above is from my Ipod! I downloaded the free app so I could watch the game while I sat on the front porch and beaded! How cool is that!! I just LOVE my IPOD!!

Yep, I am back and FINALLY feeling so much better. Think I had a bit of a flare up with the old RA since the back problem. But today I felt great! I did 3 loads of laundry, cleaned the house, mopped all the floors, cleaned and disinfected Gracie's cage (a weekly job) then Carol and I head off to split a salad at Panera's then to Stein Mart and some shopping.
Yesterday and today I worked on my Feb. BJP
bird. I know he looks a little strange but he is suppose to be upside down eating berries! This is or will be a Painted Bunting bird and it's another design from Helene Knott .

This shows some of the tail feathers that I've been beading.
Now to catch up on what I have been doing the past week or two as far as being a Florida tourist!
These are pictures from the Master Garden Show last weekend. I wasn't walking all that well and Carol was kind enough to allow me to sit and rest!but the flowers were beautiful as usual.

The orchids are amazing!! I didn't take that many pictures but I had to stop and shot these two.

And we went to John and Marilyn's again for their annual St. Patrick's Day dinner with 20 others! John and Maryilyn outdo themselves each year. I wasn't up to myself yet but I did take these two pics of John and Cody! He's a little Bichon who lives next door and comes to visit every day. Isn't he adorable!!! I'd take him in a heartbeat! So would Mandy!

Yesterday, Carol and I left early in the a.m. to see one of the local art walks/shows. This is our friend, Peggy, at her table displaying her artwork and her husband's carved wooden ducks. I've posted on my blog before about this talented couple.

Peggy had one of the nicest displays of her work.

These are some of Sammy's hand carved ducks. Aren't they wonderful!!

This is one of my favorite paintings Peggy has done.

So that's it folks!! My activities for the past week - minus the exciting visit to the ER! We'll forget all about that part!

So now I'm back and planning to be in my art room tomorrow - after I bath and clip Mandy! Hope everyone is enjoying some of their own spring weather! Flowers are blooming in our community and it looks just like spring. I'll have to take some pictures and post. In my spare time!

Thursday, March 17, 2011

January BJP Finished

I'm back with the living or should I say moving! It's been an interesting past few days. Actually, not very interesting, boring if the truth be known. I don't know how people can sit and stare at the TV all day. Now eating the bon bons I can do but I was quite bored just lying flat. Yesterday I was able to sit with lots of pillows and I finished my January BJP! Yipee!! Only 11 more to go!!
This is suppose to be a Western Tanager but my colors aren't quite right. I still think he's rather 'pretty'. The edges are not finished with beads as I usually do. I plan to use each journal quilt to make one large quilt. This may or may not work out as I haven't planned it out yet. Worse case, I'll go back and finish the edges of each piece with beads. Leaving my options open at this point!

I used a pattern from Helene Knott that was in the American Quilter (March 2011 issue). Helene also has two other bird patterns that I'm going to use for beading two other journal pieces. One is a Blackpoll Warbler and the other one is a Painted Bunting. I think I'll work on that one next.
I was also able to make a beaded ring for St. Patrick's day. I don't have a green top to wear and being laid up for the past few days put a squelch to buying something. So here's my green I'll wear today.

We're actually going to John and Marilyn's to attend their annual St. Patrick's Day dinner (see last years post here.) They are having around 20 of us over and each bringing a dish to pass. I'm make my cheesecake cupcakes. Carol is making Irish soda bread which is so good.
It's good to be almost back to normal but I'm signing off now to go and lie down for a few, then I'll frost my cupcakes! Happy St. Patrick's day!