My Favorite Books

Monday, May 25, 2020

Typical "staying home, staying safe" week!

To be honest, I can't say I've felt at all that bad being 'quarantined' in our house!  I'm basically a person who enjoys staying at home so for me, life isn't that much different!  Other than we don't go out to eat once or twice a week!  But I look at it as $$'s we're saving, right!  See, there's always an upside to any situation!

I usually make us breakfast and dinner every day (other than the days we have dinner out) and lately I've just been doing more experimenting with meals...thanks to my daughter who shares some of her great meals with me!!!  Homemade bread is something Bob and I both love!  Fresh bread from the oven or toasted in the morning is so, so good!

This is an easy bread recipe and oh, so good!

This past week, Bob asked me to make his favorite Buttermilk Fried Chicken...this is a wonderful recipe and just delicious!!  It's by Ina Garten on the FoodNetwork web site.  I've made it several times and although it's messy, it is worth the cleanup!!!

I also made Ree Drummond's Roasted Red Pepper Pasta, which is delicious!  It's very easy and makes enough to freeze for another dinner!

It was also my son and Kris' 30th anniversary on May 19th!  I can't believe it's been 30 years!!!!  My baby being married for 30 years!    This was a collage my son put together...he said they'll have to celebrate later with a trip somewhere.

 They would usually go away in May to celebrate and grandma would stay with the 'little ones' (at that time!) and then 'ship' them off to Auntie and Uncle Jeff's for a weekend!  It was always a fun time to stay with the kids.

And some more's been two years since Amber graduated from high school in 2018!

And it's been six years since Ian graduated from high school!
These two are just the best grand kids you could ask for...both such a lady and gentleman...

Let's see...what else have I been up to!  Making some 12"x12" quilts for a challenge due in October...can't show what it is I'm doing...have 1 finished, 2 ready to bind and 2 more that I have to start on from the beginning!  But they'll be done way before October!  I hope!

I do have another knitted project to work on!  This is a really cute little shawl by Laura Nelkin.  My lace shawl was Laura's pattern too. 

This particular shawl has beading worked throughout the bottom area and on the edging.  Not sure I'll put in on the edging but I will definitely knit the beads along the bottom part of the shawl. 

I really like how she made the center pattern!  Isn't it cool!  Well, I think so and that's what's important, right!  HA

You can see some additional pictures here on Ravelry.

I ordered some of the same type yarn Laura used and received it in the mail this past weekend. 
It's a blend of beige colors and as my kids know "mum and Bob love their beige clothes"!  HA

I'm waiting for two different size needles as I didn't have any small enough to work this pattern.  They should arrive this week...then I get to pick some beads to knit in.  Laura uses #6 or #8's and of course I have everything else in my bead stash, right!

So basically, other than cooking, some art work, quilting, cleaning, walking dogs and walking with a neighbor friend this is some of my week!  And speaking about walking!  Check out how many steps I got!  That's the most I've achieved and probably will remain the most...but quite an accomplishment for this 73 yr old! 

Thursday, May 21, 2020

Bubbles again!

Since I've been so busy being Betty Crocker I figured today I would be 'Minute Maid' and do some add'l spring/fall cleaning. You would think I learned my lesson back in 2015 but no such luck!  I decided to clean out the whirlpool tub today, which I do a few times a year.  Normally, I just put bleach in a filled tub and run the jets.  Easy, right!  Well, it took a lot more work today...just like back in 2015! 
you may have to enlarge...this was from 2015 and look identical today!

I forgot to rinse the Scrubbing Bubbles from the tub before I added water/bleach and ran the jets...guess what happens!  Yep...BUBBLES!!  Lots of bubbles!!!  You can read my post from 2015 below and today it was identical!   So, I didn't have to take pictures and  I didn't have to panic since I knew how to remove the bubbles!  So here is my post from 2015!  Hope you get a laugh during this 'stay at home' time!  There is humor even in our cleaning, right!

The Key Word being BUBBLES!  - From a post October 10, 2015

Guess it pays to read what we buy, right!

 We have a whirlpool tub in our master bath, which we use every night...just for baths...not for the whirlpool.   Every few months,  I like to use some bleach and cleaner with the 'jets' running to keep it clean.  SOOOOOOOO

This a.m. I sprayed and scrubbed each little jet then filled the tub with water.  When the water level was over the jets I started the whirlpool.  And then I started to clean the shower and rest of the bath......

AND LOOK AT WHAT I SAW WHEN I TURNED AROUND!!!!!  I know it's a little hard to see but the bubbles  almost made it to the top of the tub!!!  Talk about freak out time....for those of you who know my husband you can understand why I between laughing!  OMG!  Fortunately, Bob was busy working on his golf stats in the computer room.  Can you imagine the look on his face if he would have walked in!  The world would have been overrun with bubbles...that would have been his first thought!  He does get freaked easily!

 I knew water was just going to make it worse and not allow the bubbles to go down the drain...So, what to do....GOOGLE of course!!!  "How to get rid of bubbles in a tub!"  Actually, the answer came from a 'hot tub' question of similar circumstances....they couldn't get rid of the bubbles either..although I'd tend to think they were using something other than 'Scrubbing Bubbles'.   Just sayin!

The answer was towels...and lots of them!  Just scoop the bubbles on a towel and squish the towel!
Actually, I ended up only using four bath towels...the bubbles would squish easily.  Although, I can't wait to see what happens when I wash the towels!

 WHEW!  I have to admit I kept laughing and wanted so bad to tell Bob...which I will.  I'll have him read this at some point in time...but until then...make sure you read the label before you start playing Minute Maid.

Friday, May 15, 2020

Lace Shawl Finished

 Back in early March, I started this lace shawl pattern (blog post is here).  It was a challenge for me because of some new stitches but also because of using the Portuguese knitting method.  I love, love, love this method of knitting.  With my arthritis, it was always so painful to knit...not so much as I was knitting but then I would stop and the next day.  Fingers/joints hurt so much but now I can knit for hours and nothing!!!!!  Anyway, with the assistance of questions I asked of Andrea Wong and referencing her classes online via Blueprint, I succeeded!  Woohoo

This was back on March 29, 2020 when I started on the edge of the shawl and ran out of yarn!!!  WHAT!!!!  Normally, this wouldn't be a big/panic deal but I only kept the wrapper with the name of the yarn and not the color of yarn!  Do you know how many colors look like this yarn on the web?  I did contact our local yarn shop but she didn't carry the yarn anymore in this colorway.  I finally bit the bullet and thought I'd take a chance and look on line....and found what I thought was, perhaps, the color I needed. at Eat.Sleep.Knit web site.  Figured I could return the skein and order another one!  Luckily, I hit on the right color the first time.  Whew!

I received the yarn about 10 days ago and worked on the scalloped edge last weekend!  Blocked it on Monday this past week and all finished!
Skywalker pattern by Laura Nelkin

I am really quite happy with how it turned out.  Is it perfect?  No, but just like our quilting, you don't let folks look toooooo closely at your work!  HA 

Honestly, any mistakes in the lace pattern are hard to see,  unless you are an expert, or my husband, and there really aren't that many!  I do wish I had purchased yarn in a spring shade, e.g. peach. 

 I'm still happy and now I know what to do for my next lace shawl, which I will do again!!!!

Wednesday, May 13, 2020

Just a few items....

I finished another sketch and cropping this weekend...and I cleaned up my dye/wet room and sewing room!!!  Woohoo!!!

The inspiration picture is at the top attempt at the bottom!

These were my cropping attempts.  Actually, I kinda like them!

I found this so called 'cropping' tool inside of a photo frame!  I think it would be cool to have a piece of art work made in this triangle!

Not bad!

I think this is a fun exercise to do!  Now to find some other inspiration pictures!!!

AND the best news!!!!  I found the yarn I needed (in the right color!!!) and finished my lace shawl!!!  Here it is being blocked!!!!  I squished the entire piece in water, squeezed out most of the water and pinned to the carpet downstairs. 

  I am so excited to wear it but don't have anywhere to go right now!!! HA  I'm sure it will come in handy later this summer when we go out to eat at a restaurant that is freezing and I'm cold!  Not that the lace will keep me warm but I'll look good, right!  HA

Sunday, May 10, 2020

Quarantine Mother's Day 2020

This is one of my most memorable and favorite Mother's Day yet!!  Saturday afternoon the phone rang to a person saying "Grubhub Delivery"!   My 'not so current/hip ' hubby said "what??"  The person then said "look in your driveway!"  And there was my daughter, son and grandson!!!  Delivering food and gifts for Mother's Day!!!! 

My daughter started off handing me a pan of Mushroom quiche, another container of Cinnamon Baked French Toast, a container of strawberries/blueberries, hash brown potatoes, blueberry scones and a hanging basket of Begonia's!

With our Stay at Home, I haven't even thought about getting any flowers so these will be perfect to start our spring planting....when our frost is over with...but that's another post on the weather!

Guess this Quarantine isn't so bad after all is it!!!

Next my grandson handed me yellow tulips and my son handed me a dish of Lasagna Kris (our DIL) made along with a Chocolate Silk Pie!!!!  Then he handed us the welcome sign which is so cute with the dog print as the 'O' in HOME!!!!

The lasagna Kris made was all ready to put in the oven, which I did early!  Bob and I couldn't wait to eat!!!

It was DELICIOUS!!!!  Oh my gosh, the best lasagna we have had!  I normally would put any leftover in the freezer to eat next week but it was so good, we're eating it on Monday again for dinner!!!  With all the food for breakfast tomorrow, I know we won't want a big dinner!  We'll be nibbling all day!

And the Chocolate Silk pie Kris gave us!!!  No, we didn't eat all of it (yet!).  I gave some to was SO good.....

I was so surprised at the kids being so thoughtful but at the same time I'm not surprised!  I feel so fortunate to have the kids and  their spouses that I do have.  They are ALWAYS thinking of ways to help each other in the family, to make someone's day better and just always giving of themselves.  I have tears of joy and pride as I type this post so forgive me but I am busting with pride - or is it  because of all the food!

Saturday, May 9, 2020

It's Cropping Time!

Here are the results of our lesson this week.  We had to crop from our original drawings....this was fun but I was using the wrong pens then the wrong pencil - although, Hilary did suggest we just use a pen to redraw our crop pics...she said you'll spend more time erasing, which was true!!!  HA HA

This was my original inspiration ....

My 'drawing' on the left and cropping on the right.  These crops were around 3"x6"..the others were 2"x 4".

I didn't want to draw the flower...duh...but I did use the leaf and stems on the left for the next design and crop.

I added the leaf when I did my original drawing.

This was actually from a birthday card for either Bob or I.  I just like the front of the card...good inspiration,right!

And my inspiration drawing on the left and cropping on the right.  Yes, I took a lot of liberty and changed the leaves!  My crop so I can do what I want!  HA 

I really like this abstract leaf picture...

Probably my favorite crop.  Have to say this was a fun exercise to do.  I really enjoy Hilary's online class.  We're working on design and construction this year.  Fingers crossed...still don't know what 'theme' I'm going for!

Wednesday, May 6, 2020

Drawing - Not my favorite thing to do!

Those who know me also know I don't like drawing!  I cannot draw...I'm not good at it...nor will I ever.  I've always said I trace so well!  BUT...Hilary (in our online MIP Yr 2 class) has us doing some sketching in this week's lesson from some of the photo's that we like.  Well, guess that's my first problem...I'm not sure what I like or what theme I I am all over the place right now!  HA

But I did give it a go yesterday!  I have some other photos that I will use for my inspiration and hope they'll turn out better than these...but just wanted to share my weak attempts, as I know there are others who feel as I do.  It's still a great exercise and who knows what will come of these.  We'll be cropping and drawing more in the next two weeks!  Fingers crossed!

This was a picture on FB from Visual Cortex.  This is a really cool site and wonderful visual art pictures!!!  Check them out!

This is a photo from  A floral abstract which I really liked...I want to add more to it but for now I think there are areas I can crop for a design.

This is 50's vintage fabric pattern I thought was interesting...but shoot I can't even draw the flowers the way they should!  HA

Oh well...stay safe and stay home!!!

Saturday, May 2, 2020

Collage and Stamping

So now we're playing around cutting out some of our stamped papers so we can collage in our sketchbooks!  I've had fun, as usual, with the stamping...not so satisfied with some of the overdyeing on my papers (see previous post) but that's ok.  I can always make more, right!

These are some stamped pages I made a few weeks ago that I don't believe I posted.  The arch stamp and tree are ones I carved back in 2009 while taking another online carving class by Dijanne Cevall.  That was another great online class!

The background was using an old foam stamp I stuck to cardboard...the blue leaf is a rubber stamp and the gold leaves are from a stencil printed on top.

Actually the gold/brown was leftover paint from making the paper below!

This turned out pretty good, I think!

Here are three of my collage pages I made yesterday. They were a good starting point.  

This paper is similar to what I cut out for the collage above and below.

I cut out the blue feathers from another stamped layout paper.  Then I cut out the pink feathers from this deli paper and collaged down in my book.

Same with this collage.  I cut out the prints from the layout paper then added pieces of deli paper (bottom left and the white piece in the middle).

All in all, I'm satisfied with these...I may go back and add to them or make some more papers!  Works for me!