Sunday, June 30, 2013

Lazy Sunday and Slow Stitch Sunday

Ultimately, I have three goals for today.

1) Finish the scarf I started two days ago on Caitlyn's Knitting Loom.  This will be my Slow-Stitch Sunday project for Kathy's site;  it's been ages since I worked on a slow-stitch project.

2)  Finish Clue #3 of Bonnie Hunter's Lazy Sunday mystery via Quiltmaker magazine.    The blocks were finished a few weeks ago, but the purple "diagonal" units have to be cut and sewn yet.

3)  Finish the quilting on Wafer Cookies, and maybe even sew on the binding.

It's a beautiful morning outside right now;  sunny and 60s.  It's supposed to warm up nicely to low 80s.  I may have to fight off some puppydog eyes who might be asking to head to the beach.  LOL.  We'll see what the day has in store.

Saturday, June 29, 2013

A tomato-rescuer addict!

It's almost 5:00, and I STILL haven't made it down to the sewing room!!!!  LOL
I certainly hope to tonight, though.

Instead, I spent the afternoon helping Paul put up a fence for our tomato section and strawberries.  The chickens enjoy scraping through the grass mulch I use on the tomatoes and strawberries;  it was time to put that to an end.  

Also, although we usually never have had much deer trouble in the past, they have found my strawberry patch and ate off the tops of a couple of my plants :( :( :(  Ooooooh, those mean deeries!

And rather than put up fencing around the strawberries, Paul thought we'd give this method a try to see if it'll deter the chickens.  It'll definitely keep the deer from eating the plants.

Then, while Paul cleaned out his truck, I fired up the tiller to do some cultivating around the berry bushes and the rescued tomatoes in the upper garden.

I couldn't resist!!!!!  After tilling around the plants, I dug up a few more rogue Roma tomato plants to rescue!!!!
And looooooked at all the rogue tomatoes that are still readily available in case I feel I want to rescue a couple more!!! LOL.  So now..... we have 14 Roma tomato plants "rescued" in the upper garden.  Together with the 18 plants in the main garden, we should happily have a nice harvest come September.

Starz and Tristen (goats) were keeping up conversations with me as I was digging up the tomatoes.
Naturally, they baa and baa and baa until they get some attention --- in the form of weedy greens, of course.

I think Tristen is purposefully sticking out her tongue at me!!!

Cassie was finished picking strawberries at 1:30 and was pretty happy coming home with her first day's pay already.  So, 75% of it was put away in an envelope for her Savings acct, and the rest in her wallet.   She's spending some time holding the ducks...

...trying to get all of them a bit more accustomed to us.  The Mallards' feathers are starting to show nicely;  we're hoping the one (she's holding) is a male -- there is a bit of blue-green on the head and tail area -- keeping fingers crossed.   As for the Peking ---- ?????  I have no idea how to tell male from female.  And notice the one is kind of a tan color?  We're wondering if maybe we got a "mutt";  it has a purplish beak as well.  **shrug** 

2013 Garden layout & the Knitting Loom

Due to the late spring we had this year (remember our May snow?), everything in the garden is a bit behind normal, and DEFINITELY way behind from where it was last year with the "early" spring we had.  

Paul and I are hoping we have trained Cassie enough to the hard work of gardening-n-the like, because she starts picking strawberries today for a local berry farm.  She's extremely excited for the possibilities of her first inflow of cash.  LOL.  
Thankfully, it's a perfect day for her first day.  Mostly cloudy and 70s.

Upon returning home from dropping her off, I headed to the garden to do a bit of TLC in the form of mulching the strawberries, and thinning/repotting the green beans.  This is the third year now where I've not simply thinned out the sickly looking green bean seedlings, but I've dug up plants and repositioned plants in order to spread them out for the growing season.  Using a third reserved row that was empty 'til today, I have them spaced about 6-8 inches apart now;  three rows of about 32 plants in each row.  Ummm........I really thought I sized down the green bean section this year, but coming off of a year of 105 plants, I guess I didn't size down afterall.  LOL.  Whoopsies!  We have 5 cases of green bean pints still in the root-cellar;  we really didn't need so many plants this year.  Ah well---that simply means that friends will be invited over again to enjoy our harvest as well.

Here's the layout of the garden this year......

Raspberries (in drastic need of a haircut!), 
a small plot of strawberries mulched in the front, 
and some odds-n-ends of peppers that Paul filled in

left: 45 hills of white potatoes,  12 rows of corn behind the potatoes
middle: 10? pepper plants, 24 hills of red potatoes behind the peppers
right: 16 tomato plants, 3 rows of green beans behind the tomatoes

L-R from water tank...
row1: lettuce, a variety of radishes, dill, basil
row2: Cauliflower, celery
row3: a full row of peas, fenced for climbing vines
row4: carrots, kolarabi (sp?)
on the trellis: 12 cucumber plants, pole beans
cabbage (under the white covering)
last rows: onions

I did end up rescuing (only) 8 Roma tomato plants;  they are housed in the virtually empty upper garden.  With the late planting, we simply didn't bother with our spreading plants this year that need longer growing times (watermelon, squash, pumpkins, gourdes, ...)  Therefore, the upper garden is mostly empty.  Paul purchased a few varieties of berry bushes and planted them up there.  I have a feeling we are going to fill much of the space with berry bushes over the next couple of years and no longer use it for vegetables.

Since I absolutely lazed around yesterday watching Gangs of New York from 9AM - 1PM, cuddled on the couch, I am determined to get some sewing/quilting done today.  Although, I did play with one of Caitlyn's Christmas presents from last year....
When out looking the other day for some Knitting Knobby information, I watched several YouTube videos on the Knitting Loom.  One of them sparked an interest, so I asked Caitlyn to loan me her loom for a short time.  While watching some movies last night with the girls, I loomed away.  It's definitely a beginner's method, but something that any of the girls can take over with as well.  Besides, now I have a project that is readily available next to my glider :)

Happy Saturday everyone!

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Feelin' the wind thru our hair!

It's almost Friday.
I have spent ZERO time in the sewing room this week.
The days have simply been filled with other things...

Monday; gardening...
Yesterday;  car shopping...

Tuesday and Today...BOATING with the family

So, Angela...
If you were wondering about my silence...
Wondering if I was suddenly going to post with FOUR finishes all at once before the end of this month....

Nothing to worry about :)
BUT, I do hope to put some time before June comes to a close  {{JUNE?? CLOSING ALREADY???  Cah-RAZY!}}.  Paul is back working nightshift for the next few days; which will mean sleeping during the day for him; which will mean some "down-time" for me to get some sewing/quilting in.

Happy Almost Weekend everyone :)

Out with the old...

It's time.
The yellow machine is beginning its downward death spiral into the abyss of "been there" vehicles. 
205,000 miles;  we got her in 2003 when she was only 40,000 miles young.
2001 Ford Escape when we were building the house in 2003; the decisions!!!!!
The rest of this post sounds like something out of a Car-n-Drive magazine.  If you are also a family searching for a new vehicle, by all means;  read on!  If not, continue at your own potential boredom :)

Chevy Traverse
For the past few months, we have only been looking around for Chevy Traverses.

Traverse Interior - 3rd seat (seats 7)
We know we want something with the 3rd row seat due to the girls getting older; having friends to bebop around here-there-everywhere.  Of course, with the 3rd row seat, the back row has a tendency to be a bit squished, BUT I actually sat in the back of one yesterday, and had decent leg room.  Mind you, I'm only 5'4".  However, when we had Cassie crawl in back (currently 5'6"--that girl is GROWING!!!), she also had adequate leg room.  Sitting 3-wide is a different story for any trip of distance, BUT kiddos can manage if it came to that scenario.

Traverse Storage
Even storage is adequate with all the seats available.
Traverse Storage with seats folded
Of course, even better with the seats removed (if need be.)

Traverse towing capabilities
Many of them come with AWD (all-wheel-drive);  always a nice PRO for those of us in the northern parts of the nation getting dumped on with snow for over half the year.  And the towing capabilities should make Paul happy;  no more need to have the truck pull the boat.

Everything sounds GREAT right?!?!?!?!?!

The sad reality;  the price ticket has the potential of being in our ballpark, but many of the low-mileage ones we looked at yesterday were starting to jump out of our budget :(

So, we put the mileage on yesterday traveling around from town-to-town 9AM until 4PM, stopping at any and most dealerships we saw.

GMC Acadia
Acadias were looked at as well; being so similar to the Traverses;  sadly those prices were also similar.
GMC Yukons are also an ideal consideration;  until you look at THAT price tag!!!   
And don't EVEN get me started on Suburbans!  LOL.  Noooooooooo thank you, Sir!

And THEN!..... Enter Chad from a Chevy/Chrysler dealership.
That lil' man ACTUALLLLLLLY started wheeling-n-dealing for me to consider a MiniVan.
Showed us a spiffy lil' Chrysler Town-n-Country (as spiffy as they can be, I suppose) decked out with every little add-on under the sun!
Chrysler Town & Country (trying to look bad a$$)  LOL
Showed us how this seat can fold this way;  that seat can fold that way;  the "Stow-n-Go" capabilities or to use that space under the floorboard as storage;  the roomy no-need-to-exit-vehicle to move from seat to seat if needed...

The prices are in our range
The interior space is exactly what we need
There truly are a LOT of PROS that Paul and I seriously started to consider as we continued our dealership trip.

After all was said-n-done.
We don't have a vehicle yet.
Ummm......we haven't narrowed our choices down either!  In fact, we added some. LOL

For me, the two CONS about a mini-van;  NO 4WD/AWD and NO towing capabilities (more like NOT able to pull our boat out of the water from the landings).
The PROS;  COST being #1--a 2010 standard features we looked at yesterday is waaaaaay into our budget with LOTS of room to spare.

Hohum; hohum.

NOT liking about having to choose from all of our choices now.

To be continued....

Sunday, June 23, 2013

A day of rest!

The softball tournament concluded yesterday for our team at 6:30PM with a 3rd place trophy.  Naturally, they wished to advance to the final championship, but fell one run short.  Despite, bringing home some hardware was an exciting ending to the day.

3rd place out of 14 teams 
The rain held off all day;  as did the sun for much of the day.  So, the day was perfect for softball!
Our 6th grade leaders
And today.... it is WIDE OPEN for a LOT of "nothing!"  LOL
This will be the first day in 14 where we don't have anywhere to be;  the first day where everyone can sleep in (which they all did until 9:30; and I did until 7:30!)
It's another overcast gloomy day.  However, mother nature is taking care of watering my garden :)  I'm thinking of heading out shortly to see about rescuing those tomato plants, however :)

And then, Bonnie is planning Quiltcam at 2:00PM EST.  I. Am. SO. There! 

Happy Sunday :)

Saturday, June 22, 2013

They wanna survive!

We haven't planted much of anything in our upper garden plot this year; just a few new berry bushes.  Yesterday, our goats escaped from their pen, and we keep joking that they are one escape from ruining our garden.  LOL.  Thankfully, they were only enjoying some weeds along the edge of the garden fence.

I remember finding tomato seedlings in the dirt last year from our previous year when we had ALL the tomatoes in the upper garden.  I had rescued 12 tomato plants at the time:  remember that?  Well, it ended up that they were all lil' baby Roma tomatoes, and all of the harvest from those 12 was given away to friends, family and coworkers.  

Take a gander at what we spied while walking and actively looking in the upper garden last night....
I wanna live!!!
I'm SURE a few of them will be rescued again. And why not??  We definitely have the space!   {{Don't worry Paul!  I'll behave!!!}} :D

Cassie had my camera again yesterday for her class.... and she snapped another gem!!!  This one may just make the wall.
Alrighty everyone.  Have a great Saturday.  We have a full line up of softball ahead of us....again.  LOL.  The skies are completely overcast and it's been drizzling all morning.  Radar is showing a steady line of "green" for the next couple of hours, but it doesn't appear to be anything 'heavy.'  This might actually be a great day of ball for the girls!  Not hot or sunny!  Little chance of heatstroke or heat illness.  No major sunburns.  Yup, yup.  Great day.  ((I just hope the rain behaves))

Friday, June 21, 2013

On my Knitting-knobby

I see so many ladies posting projects ... "On my needles."  I don't know the first THING about knitting,  but...
I'm one WICKED knitty-knobbier!  :D  Teehee.
I decided to pull it out of it's storage bag by my chair to check out the progress since I'm home with a patient.

Candace's summer school teacher called me a bit after 10:00 informing me that Candace was complaining of an ear-ache.  I figured even if it was only a minor ache, we've ALL been going-going-going lately.  I picked her up without hesitation with plans to just have her SIT and RELAX, knowing all too well that we have a full night of softball ahead AND a full day tomorrow!.  So, am I a kushy mom???  She's taken a small dose of Jr. Tylenol and we've made it through Megamind already.  She's now moving onto the computer for a little while.

Me?  I'm going to do some more knitting-knobbying.

Happy Friday

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Two completions

The finishing touches of binding for Scrappy Pineapple Blossom and Seven Shirts Seven Clues were completed this morning.  And since my camera has been hijacked, my iPhone pictures will simply have to suffice :)

Scrappy Pineapple Blossom (72" x 72")

Seven Shirts (64" x 76")

AND, being Throwback Thursday....

I figured my Wafer Cookies top had been fermenting long enough!  It was started June 14, 2008; top completed July, 2009.  

A backing was prepped, batting cut, loaded to the frame and half quilted already....

My camera was hijacked!

Cassie is signed up for a Photography course for summer school.  She hijacked my camera the past two days....
None of these have been edited.



Lil' Hen
"From the Inside" 
"White Satellites"  
Archery Class
(another class that Cassie and Caitlyn are both signed up for)

Thanks for checking out her first unofficial Art Show :D