Monday, November 30, 2009

New do...

I'm not a blonde right now. I've gone dark before, but never this dark. My first graders are going to flip tomorrow. Mark my words, some sweet little kid will give me a nice compliment, but I bet at least 5, no 8, kids will freak out and tell me they liked my hair the 'old' way. And by that, I hope they mean they liked it better blonde and not GRAY. There was a lot of gray to cover up. When I got called Grandma (twice in two weeks by different kids) I knew it was time to spice it up a bit.

Also, I'm not a big fan of self-portraits. They seem to be even worse when you are a nearly 40 year old trying to hide your braces. Sheesh, is it April yet?

Sunday, November 29, 2009


The following images may spoil a surprise if you
  • have recently adopted a baby boy from China
  • are expecting a baby boy this spring
  • currently are a teacher to one of my children
  • are a fabulous assistant in my room

This is what I have been up to in my sewing room for the past 8 days! The five table runners have been a work in progress for 2 years. My apologies to the teachers of my children last year. I hope you liked the Starbucks cards, I love quilting and doing projects... but they sometimes take me longer (a lot longer) than I intend.

I actually have one more I made... but I liked it so much I am keeping it for myself. It is vintage red-white-blue for 4th of July.

Both quilts are a new pattern called 'I Spy with a Twist'.
It is my favorite type of pattern - one that looks more difficult than it actually is.

I am trying to decide what projects I will tackle over Christmas Break. I will need to help the girls get started on 4H projects soon... so my projects may be put on hold again.

The Apprentice

Marc always has some project or other that he is working on around our house. His handyman skills are very impressive. Between his job working for a contractor in high school, his dad, neighbors and friends, he has learned and tackled electrical wiring, plumbing, decks, siding, roofing, dry wall, and a fire pit. His current project is installing a sprinkler system. But this time he hasn't had to tackle the project himself.

Even thought the weather has been chilly at times, Taryn has been her dad's apprentice, his side-kick, his runner. She has learned about different tools, she knows the names of at least 4 different shovels (who knew there were so many?), and she hasn't quit. She told me last night that she thinks maybe for 4H this year that she should make herself a tool belt. She is a chip off the old - I mean ole block. She had to have gotten the fix-it gene from her dad. That is NOT my style. I am much more of an 'inside-where-it-is-dry-and-warm' girl. I love a fun project, but it needs to involve the words, cute-pretty-creative-etc. or I'm not really interested.

I am going to be really excited this summer when the lawn will be watered before I even wake up. But for now, I have delighted in watching the two of them, the master and the apprentice, working together, side-by-side.

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Feasting this Thanksgiving

This Thanksgiving we feasted on:

Bacon wrapped turkey
Mashed potatoes
Homemade butter
Green beans
Chocolate Pie
Pumpkin Pie

But what I am most thankful for on this Thanksgiving:

  • A loving husband that is willing and able to make our house a home. His handyman skills are too numerous to count. He also manages to keep his sanity living in this estrogen rich environment. His laid back nature helps him not to lose his mind with all the mood swings and chaos that a wife and three daughters can create.

  • Three loving daughters that each have their own unique personalities. Where one has weakness the others have strengths. When they are not busy tormenting each other, they design playhouses, produce plays, protect and help each other. Though each of them is unique they are all loving and compassionate towards others. I hope that this goodness of heart will guide them as they grow their own wings and wander about in their lives.

  • I am thankful for a job that allows me to help children learn both classroom skills as well as life skills. I work in a school where we strive to give all students fairness, equality, courage and a safe haven to learn. Teaching lets me have a career and lots of time to be a wife and mother. My job provides me with a comfortable salary, wonderful benefits and the opportunity to help contribute to my community.

  • I am thankful to live somewhere that is small enough that many friends feel like family. We can get across town in 6 minutes unless there is a train. You can count on seeing people you know no matter where you are in town. The gas station attendants, the coffee barista and grocery checkers know you by name.

  • I am thankful for my health. I am thankful that I can make mistakes and my friends and family forgive me, give me a second chance and let it go. I am thankful for my friends - all of them - some I see and talk to daily - some I've never met in real life - some I haven't seen in 25+ years - and all are ready and able to lend a hand, or an ear, when I come calling. I would be lost without the mosaic of friends in my life.

The five of us spent this week at home, together. There were no travel plans to see extended family. The rest and relaxation was well appreciated. Our busy life is not going to change. We will again load up and travel over the river and through the woods to visit our families. But this 2009 Thanksgiving was just us and it was just perfect.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Simple Minds... Simple Joys?

I decided to start collecting old spools of thread.

They fit perfectly on the ledge around my sewing room.

I can spend hours trimming up the loose threads.

I can organize them by color.

If I get bored I can play in my button box.

Simple minds only need simple joy?


Or is the truth hiding?

I only get joy out of the simple tasks because I am procrastinating
the bigger messes that are not so simple to clean up.

Saturday, November 7, 2009


Yep, I am officially considering myself a blog cheater. Out there right now there is some Blogger challenge where people are posting yeah, right.... not going to be happening here.

I am barely able to manage these cheater posts where I put random, unrelated pictures together and call them a post. I am going to plead it is better than nothing, but not by much. Here goes:

Marc and I got to go to the Stanford - OSU game in October...we won and it didn't rain... it doesn't get any better than that!

I also did a Martha Stewart pumpkin... power drill & Christmas lights!I loved that I just had to plug it in and the wind wouldn't blow it out.

Reagan and her friend M. at dance recital. Their group is called 'Free Ride'. She does toe-touches in her routine. I made a mistake about 5 years ago and tried to see if I could still do my toe-touch jump from my HS Cheer days. I could, but I will NEVER attempt that again.

I was sorry.
Very sorry.

Our puppies, Griz & Basil are both almost one. Griz is a Dec. puppy and Basil is February. They got their first 'haircuts'. It cost as much as it costs me to get my hair done. The groomer recommended they get cut every 8 weeks. Let me just say... if I don't pay to get my own
hair done every 8 weeks there is no way they will get theirs done.

This is/was/will be our yard. The white picket fence is down, the grass is gone. Marc will need to level, then trench, then install the sprinkler system. We are going to seed this time and not do sod. We have a 'connection' ~ the local golf grounds supervisor who will coach us through the process.

We both have different ideas about what type of fence to put in. We have settled on 'tall' as being our only agreed upon criteria so far. I am thinking the fence is a ways off, so I'm not too worried about it yet.