Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Knitted Hats

I got a knitting loom for Christmas, and I finished my first project today. I started out with a small hat just to see how it would go. This could be quite addicting.
I've already started hat #2.  They are quite easy so I'll have to see if I can find some more advanced patterns online...and make another trip to the store for more yarn in more colors.

Monday, December 27, 2010

My Sister and Her Many Looks

As I was looking through my Christmas photos, I found several of my sister. The first one is one of several self-portraits we were taking. The rest of them she is just being silly!

Thanks for the Christmas memories.

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Christmas Cookies

They're finally finished.  This is one of many things Mom and I accomplished today.

Monday, December 20, 2010

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas...

The presents are wrapped and under the tree.  There is finally snow on the ground and there's more to come this week.  Today I had two holiday outings...work lunch and friend dinner.  They were both delicious, but they could have been spread out over more than one day. 

Over the weekend I attended a Christmas program at the church of a friend of mine.  The kids did great.  It's always fun to watch the little ones.

I can't wait for the long weekend.  I've started my list of things to take along so I don't forget anything.  I even have a few things in the suitcase already!

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Holiday Happenings

I've been busy with a lot of different things in the past few days.  Last Sunday Lisa and I went to Mike's for our annual Christmas candy making day.  Since then I've baked the cookies that I had actually mixed up several days ago, made chocolate covered cherries and fudge.  I needed a good supply for potluck at work tomorrow.
A few days ago I was off from work while I got a new furnace.  That was a good day to accomplish something.  I got my wallhanging basted.....slowly but surely I'm one step closer to actually getting started on the quilting part.  I've been working on a knitting project and started a puzzle.  I guess I don't want to get too bored with just one thing!!

.....and I'm still waiting for the first snow!

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Christmas Decorating

I was busy putting up my Christmas decorations last week.  I had to find a new spot for the tree this year as the couch is now in front of the window, and I really wasn't in the mood to move it.  Sorry the picture is a bit dark.  I can't seem to get a decent one with or without flash.
I've been baking too. Last night I made peanut butter balls dipped in chocolate. They are fabulous!! Tonight I'm mixing up the cookie dough so it can chill overnight, and I can bake on my day off. I need to get the dough mixed up for chocolate covered cherries so it can chill too. I love this time of year!

I'm still waiting for the first snow.

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Finishing Touch - Sewing Room

Mom came down to visit for a couple of days and brought with her this decorative art for my sewing room. We put one at Lisa's house too. It's so easy to put up.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Final Flowers Before Winter

The last of my mums finally bloomed a few days ago.  It took almost a month for the buds to open.  I was beginning to think a hard freeze would hit before it finally bloomed....if it bloomed at all.  All of my other mums have pretty much lost their color.  And tonight it's going to freeze so it happened just in time.
 Thanks for the birthday present last year, Maria.  It's beautiful!

Monday, October 25, 2010

Happy Birthday

Happy Birthday, Lisa!!  I hope you had a special day. After going out for dinner, it was time for cake and presents.  I baked her favorite lemon bundt cake last night.
She loves Halloween so I thought a seasonal towel for her kitchen was a perfect fit.

Opening her card from Mom. 

She has been admiring Mom's purse holder, and I finally found one at a Hallmark store here in town.  What a great idea to keep your purse off the floor of restaurants.

I finally finished the binding on her quilt a couple weeks ago.  Since her birthday was so close, I decided to wait and give it to her today even though she's known about it for months.
I'm glad I could celebrate your day with you.  Love ya!

Friday, October 1, 2010

Painted Floor

I've been working on painting the furnace/laundry room floor the past several days.  I finally finished up tonight.  It was a tedious project as I painted around things and then had to move them so I could paint under them.  It's amazing how a painted floor makes the room seem so much cleaner.  I get so excited about the littlest things.  Thanks, Mom, for the help when you were here and for the leftover paint.
I also painted part of a wall that I didn't get to last year because of a shelf that was in the way.  This room wasn't even on my list of projects for this year so I don't even get the enjoyment of crossing it off the list.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Fall Flowers

Finally got outside today to do some yard work. The lawn needed to be mowed (several days ago) and the flower beds needed tending. I got the lillies cut back and some deadheading done. There's lots to do yet, but I didn't accomplish it all before it got dark.
This is the first year for the purple aster and the mums in the pictures.  They look beautiful...and they're huge.

I have three more mums that aren't blooming yet.  Hopefully in another week or so.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Wallhanging for Sewing Room

This past weekend I started another sewing project.  I've been wanting to learn how to hand quilt so I knew I needed a small project to get started.  A wallhanging for my sewing room was the perfect thing.  I went to the library and picked up some books and found a pattern for this quarter log cabin. The colors are going to look great in my bright yellow sewing room.

It was quite an easy pattern but very addicting. Someday I'm going to make a full-size quilt of a log cabin variation. Hopefully this fall and winter I'll get lessons on how to quilt and can get started on the next step. 

Saturday, August 28, 2010


Earlier this week I received a newsletter from one of the quilt stores here in town.  They are collecting pillowcases for children who are hospitalized for cancer treatments or other serious diseases.  The organization that is sponsoring this is ConKerr Cancer.  The pattern is available on their website.
I had gotten enough material for a third pillowcase, but as I was making these last night I found that one of the pieces was so out of shape coming off the bolt that I couldn't get the size I needed out of it.

I'm headed to the quilt store today to deliver my projects and to see what else I can find.  It's customer appreciation days and they have 15% off.  I need to get some fabric for the border of another project I'm making with the yellow fabric I showed in this post.  Happy sewing!

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Sewing Projects

I've bought some fabric in the past few days for a couple of fun projects that I'm going to make.  It's all washed and ironed and ready to be used.  Now I just need to make the time to sew.

I'll post more photos once I'm finished.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Rain, rain, go away

We have been getting inundated with rain the past several days.  I've had 14.5 inches since Aug. 3.  My house does not usually have a problem with water in the basement, but after the first 8 inches the sewers couldn't handle all of the water.  I happened to wake up at 2 a.m. and decided to run downstairs and check to make sure everything was okay.  I really wasn't expecting the find anything.  However, I found the drain was just about ready to overflow.  I got the rugs picked up and some boxes moved and by then the water was going all over the floor.  Not good!

I was trying to scoop water out of the drain but since it was still raining outside the water just kept on coming.  So at 2 a.m. I'm outside in the rain knocking on the neighbor's door asking to use their wet vac.  He came over and helped get the water all out. About 20-30 minutes after it stopped raining, the drain was able to handle it again.  But by then the water had seeped under the wall and into the bathroom.  There was also about 4-5 feet of hallway carpeting that got wet also. 

I was up the next night again with water problems, but this time I was able to catch it before it started spreading all over the floor.  Last night I actually got a full night's sleep and will again tonight.  The rain is supposed to start again tomorrow but at least the next day is Saturday and I won't have to get up and go to work if I happen to get water and am up during the night.

I know that I am one of the lucky ones.  I just had a piddly little water problem compared to others around the area. 

Saturday, August 7, 2010

My First NASCAR Race

Last weekend I had an opportunity to go to the Iowa Speedway.  They asked for volunteeers at work to help the Tama County Pork Producers grill and give away 5,000 pork burgers.  A free ticket to the Nationwide race was included.  We left Pioneer bright and early.  By 9:30 the sandwiches were being made and put into coolers for us to give away at the tent.  By 11:45 they were gone.

The race didn't start until 6:30 p.m. so we had plenty of time to wander around.  We checked out all of the tents and picked up some freebies.  It's just like the fair!  Even the people watching is like the fair...you never know what you'll see. 

Our seats were waaaaaayyyy on the other end.

Qualifying was mid-afternoon so we watched most of that.  I knew races were loud, but I had no idea just how loud.  After hearing just one car during qualifying, I knew it would be really loud during the actual race.  Good thing for ear plugs!

After a long, hot afternoon, it was time for the race.

After two red flags and a few yellows, Kyle Busch took the checkered flag. 

Can't wait until next time!

Sunday, August 1, 2010


RAGBRAI was last week and one of the towns they went thru was West Bend.  Mike was riding for the first three days so the first order of business was to make a sign and put it in dad's parking lot.

It was a beautiful day to be outside watching everyone ride by.  Not too hot, and it wasn't raining.  The National Guard was set up across the street from mom's with free water.

We walked uptown several times to see what was going on up there too.  It was packed.  Everyone had to walk their bicylces thru the area.

Lots of riders stopped to see the Grotto and also took advantage of the shade for a quick rest.

A long line of riders coming into town.

Mike finally arrived later in the afternoon.

Seeing all the riders and the fun they have makes me think that someday maybe I'll try at least one day of the ride.  Maybe. 

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Frozen Corn

I was home for a long weekend and had plans to freeze corn.  I had helped with canning projects when I was growing up but had never frozen corn so Mom was helping me.  It was a very simple process and I won't hesitate to do it by myself next time.  Mom had all of the husks off when I got there.  I just had to make sure all the silks were off.
The corn boiled for 5 minutes and then was put into ice water.
I used the electric knife when I was cutting it off the cob, but Mom had a knife that worked best for her.
I ended up with 15 bags for the freezer.
There's nothing better than eating fresh corn with lots of butter during the winter months.  Thanks for all the help, Mom!

Saturday, July 24, 2010

4th of July

This year I headed north for the long 4th of July weekend.  Lots of events...street dance, parade, bingo, food, talent show, and auction fundraiser.
Lots of tractors (big and small) in a small rural town's parade.  It was very hot for this year's parade.  The shady spots were hard to find by the time we got uptown.

This is the race car that my dad helps wtih during the summer months.

Lots of horses too!