June Supernova Block and 25 things you didn’t know about me

Reblog from Scrappy Hearts:  This is the blog post my friendship swap partner, Joyce, did on her blog.  I, of course, am not as put together as she is – so I am using her fun post to share about the supernova swap we are participating in.

Introducing JuIie!


This is Julie’s block for our Supernova swap. She is so good. I had her block long before the deadline of June 15th. Me, on the other hand, I mailed my block to her on the 15th. Then it got sent back to me. Then it got sent back to her. It was a nightmare! Now she has it and she likes it. Yippee!

During this time, from when we first found out about the swap, to when we first decided to take this journey together, Julie has become my online friend. She has been understanding and forgiving. We have the same tastes in colors and I believe we probably have similar temperments. Julie was teaching pre-school when we first began corresponding. Now Julie is the proud owner of a longarm machine and she is busy practicing her skills so that she can begin a long-arm quilting business.


Along with our first blocks, we were directed to send along a list of 25 things about ourselves. Today I am pleased to introduce you to my friend,Julie, in her own words. You just won’t believe how similar we are!

(the first sentence is mine (Julie’s)  – the second sentence is Joyce’s.  I agree with her- it is funny how similar we are. Of the 25 things we had to share 11 of them are very similar)

My favorite treat is Peanut M&M’s.   Peanut M&M’s are the only treat I will buy.

I love water parks.   Water parks were my favorite place to take my kiddos, mostly because I love them!

I like to garden.   I have always loved to garden. I had my own garden in the yard, at the house, where I grew up.

I have been to 40 of the 50 states, 3 countries and 2 continents. It is my personal goal to visit everyone of our National Parks and I have not counted the number of states that I have visited. In the meantime I have been to 11 countries and 2 continents.

I like baskets and candlesticks.  I used to sell Longaberger and I have a sign in my house, “Whoever dies with the most baskets, wins!” Hmmm, candlesticks, something new to collect! ;-)

I like hedgehogs. I have a hedgehog stamp.

I love to travel and have adventures. Exploring “new to me” places is my favorite thing to do, local or otherwise.

I studied Fashion Design and Merchandising in college – then switched to Special Ed/Multicultural Education. My first degree is in Advertising & Communications which I received from the Fashion Institute of Technology in Manhattan. The Ad/Comm major was closely related to the Fashion, Buying and Merchandising major and we took many of the same classes. Jump forward 20 years and I went back to school for my teaching certificate. (Can you believe the similarities?)

I like to get up with the sun.  Here is where we differ, I like to sleep in til noon and stay up very late!

I like fresh flowers and candlelight dinners. Me too, but I do not like to cut flowers from my garden. I will have to get over that since I cannot afford to buy them!

I have way more projects going than I will ever be able to complete. I found myself sobbing about this not too long ago. I told my husband I was going to die before all my projects were complete. It really upset me!

Well, there’s a bit about Julie and a bit more about me! And here is one last peek at Julie’s June block.


Can’t wait to see what our challenge is for this month!

Supernova Update (more pics borrowed from Joyce’s blog of the block she made.  I totally LOVE her block and I wasn’t so crazy about how mine turned out)


I am loving how my supernova block turned out! I hope my buddy in Utah likes it also!


me talking now – it is time to begin the July block.  I have picked up a few more fabrics that have a little more blending of colors so maybe I will like it better this month.  It has been super fun getting to know Joyce and working on blocks together.  It is amazing how similar we are – I lived in New Jersey for 1 1/2 years and loved it.  Wish I could visit where Joyce lives.  I agree with Joyce – I am anxious to see what the friendship assignment for July will be….

Happy July 1st!

My Innova Longarm is FINALLY here!

Monday morning and I was Anxiously awaiting the arrival of my new baby – my Innova Longarm Quilting Machine!

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It was a few hours late so I puttered around my quilting/sewing studio…It finally arrived!

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The first piece is one of the 12 foot leaders!

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Here is the side piece!

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The frame is almost done!  I hovered the whole time – excited to see it nearing completion!  Mike, the co-owner, was very patient with my hovering.

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Here is the actual sewing part!  Woot Woot!

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It is finally time to play!

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The tablet with Pantovision.  It came with 50 pantograph patterns, but I stand up front and trace it on the tablet instead of behind the machine with a laser light.

I played a little Monday at home and then went to three days of 9 to 5 classes with Renae  Haddadin from Quilts on the Corner.  She is a fabulous quilter – she got Best of Show at Paducah last year.  She was marvelous, as was her whole team!  See all her ribbons?!  I used this photo off her website, since somehow I lost the whole first days worth of pictures!  ARG!  I did ask permission to take her photo so I don’t think she will mind me borrowing one of hers.

My children all decided they are grateful that I am a stay at home mom normally. It was super fun and overwhelming.  I missed my kids and it made for long days and short nights, but I am so happy I got to go learn.  Blessed to have a husband who is excited about my new adventure and is supporting it financially. Now it is time to practice, practice and practice some more.  The experts make it look sooooooo easy and it really isn’t!

Happy Wednesday!

Blessings of Summer

There are so many blessings that come with summer – more time with my children – no nagging about homework  – less roaring around to get to things on time – less lessons – less stress!

Every morning I wake up to the beautiful songs of the many birds that share our neighborhood with us.  In return, I leave my big strawberry patch unprotected so they can enjoy a strawberry or two.  I tried several times this week to get a picture of one particular robin that loves the strawberry patch, but it kept hopping behind the big rock to hide or flying off.  A friend suggested I cover the strawberries to keep the birds out of them, but I know God is generous to let my patch produce so many strawberries, so I want to be generous to His other creations.  Thursday morning we picked and ate as many as we wanted and these are the leftovers…with many more ripe soon.  We have made 4 batches of freezer jam and shared bowls full.

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This beautiful purple flower is full of honey bees – love the buzzing they make. The little brownish specs are the bees – there are about 7 bees in this picture.

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My little rose garden is blooming and most of them survived a mass die back this winter and are growing beautifully. They make me happy inside and they smell so good.

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Green grass to play on, a neighborhood we feel safe living and playing outside in, enough water to drink, keep things green and to play in.  Notice the white stripe right down the middle of the lawn?  That is from the slippery slide the kids enjoyed last week.  After such a cloudy gray spring, I am especially enjoying our beautiful blue summer skies!

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Let’s not forget popsicles, picnics, sunrises, sunsets, bike rides, working in the yard in the early morning coolness before the sun peeks over the mountains, hikes in the mountains, tubing down the river, camping, reading in funny places, and family reunions. I didn’t get a picture but one day we had a family of Quail bobbing in and out of our raspberry patch.  The dad, mom and 5 babies.  They were so cute.  We watched and watched for them again, but we never saw them again.

What are your summer blessings?

1st Week of Summer Equals Success! Wahoo!

When Blondie got up Saturday morning and announced she was Booorrred!  I thought I was doomed to a long summer of whining! After all it was officially still just another weekend.  But after one week of summer, I haven’t heard that phrase very often – thankfully! We have kept super busy with a variety of activities. First up (actually this was Thursday, May 29) Brownie graduated from preschool and is officially going to Kindergarten in the fall.  Isn’t she beautiful?  Her hair is naturally hombre. She didn’t want to dress up – she wanted to wear her preschool t-shirt one last time.



Monday morning was busy with piano lessons, my very first quilt class ever at a LQS, the Elf Princess started Drivers Ed and Miss America started basketball camp at the High School. Both teenagers decided to go makeup less this summer and the Elf Princess isn’t going to use heat on her hair.  She came home from Drivers Ed all horrified that her class was full of super HOT boys and she didn’t wear makeup.  I thought for sure she would break her vow, but nope, she has gone makeup less all week so far. I am happy that she is comfortable enough with her beautiful face so she can go without makeup. MIss America is off to bball camp.


The afternoon was spent moving sand from our neighbors yard to our yard for our new pool.  We splurged with our tax return this summer and got a bigger pool – bigger kids need more space. Bigger pool equals more sand.  Today I am weary of sand and setting up the pool so I am resting while I blog.  I am sure the nagging will be begin to finish getting it ready so we can start filling it today.  haha – as I was typing that, Blondie asked if we could fill the pool today.  I reminded her that the last big pile of sand has to be shoveled into the wheelbarrow and moved so we can lay the pavers around the pool. Everyone must be as tired as I am because no one moves when I mention the sand pile.

Tuesday morning we went to the theater for the kids summer movie club. That was relaxing. After the movie, we drove the big white truck to the quarry at the base of the mountain for another load of sand.  The teenagers got to unload that one.  They shoveled it into the wheelbarrow and I hauled it to the spot.  I swear that was the biggest load ever!  And we have hauled lots of sand throughout the years. Piles everywhere!  It ended up being too much sand for the pool space, so we added more to the sandboxes. We had to lower the ground so we also now have a big dirt pile for them to play in.  Tuesday night we wanted to go play in a splash pad but when we went out to the car, the rear tire was low.  I drove to the gas station to pump it up and found it had a screw in the tread so we came home and had Creamies and watched a show instead.

Wednesday morning the tire was sitting on the rim, so I pumped it up and drove to the tire store.  Thankfully it is under warranty and it didn’t cost me anything.  Blondie has a sinus thing going on and complained about her ear the whole time we were waiting so I called our chiropractor and he squeezed her in to do a sinus and ear adjustment.  We got home with 5 minutes to spare before I was suppose to start teaching my kids sewing class. whew!  Sewing class was fun.  Blondie kept telling her friends at school about her sewing projects so one of the moms asked if I taught classes.  I didn’t but I decided to….8 classes this summer.  Brownie, of course, insisted on being one of the students.


They made Kleenex covers and water bottle covers.  Brownie is too short to reach the pedal and another student is too afraid to push the pedal so I had to sit beside them and push the pedal for them.  We ended class with Popsicles. Next week we are making easy bags. Wednesday afternoon in the blazing hot sun (the tarp and sand were so hot they were burning our feet – I HAD to wear shoes! That is against the rules in the summer!) Miss America and I struggled and were frustrated putting the pool poles into the little support pocket things for a couple of hours. Only hours later to find a random piece of blank cardboard in the bottom of the pool box that actually had a tip on the other side to make the pool insertion easier!  ARG! Get them wet first.  That would have been nice to know!


This is the pool and the pile of sand that no one wants to move yet. I am too tired to make a fuss about it.  The crazy thing about hauling, moving, and leveling all the sand is the places that hurt on me – my stomach muscles and my elbows.  Go figure.


The big kids are mad because I am only going to let them fill it to a safe level on Brownie – which means not the full 4 feet.






Of course – summer means computer games!  He loves the Spirit Animal books. Special thanks to my little brother!  There is this game that goes with the books that my son just discovered.  I, of course, have to be the mean mom and try to limit him to an hour a day.


The empty pool box makes a fun fort – lots of strawberry eating and book reading going on in there.  Then a big bee buzzed in and they came screaming out and that was the end of the box this morning. LOL

It is only Thursday – we still have scouts today.  They will be cooking – hope it is edible.  haha  Tonight is the school party at an outside aquatic center. The kids are super excited about that.

Not to mention all the friends coming and going – and the tv being on every time I turn around – not a tv fan!  The teasing and wrestling, staying up late and getting up late – oh NOT!  They keep forgetting that part – everyone is up by 7:30/8:00 am. Well, not the teenagers. Where is MY peaceful time?!  I am being the “meanest Mom” ever.  They can’t even ask me for something until their chore and piano practicing it done.  4 days into summer and that is still working pretty good.  Now to get it to last ALL summer….

Happy Summer!  How was your first week?











Lovely antique find in an old hotel

My husband is so….cutethoughtfulfunny, hmmm….can’t think of the perfect word, so I will go another route.  He recently passed the date of being married longer than he was single.  Forever he said it was his longer married than alive date and we teased him to no end.   He really made me feel special because he wanted to celebrate that date.  Romantic!  That is a good word for this.  He wanted to do a mini honeymoon thing so we booked a room at the Ben Lomond Suites Hotel.  It is historic and beautiful.  The pictures don’t do it justice at all!

The lobby is gorgeous! I wish I could find a picture or multiple pics of it so you could see it beauty!

<a href=”http://www.tripadvisor.com/LocationPhotoDirectLink-g57090-d265979-i86560137-Ben_Lomond_Suites_Historic_Hotel_an_Ascend_Collection_Hotel-Ogden_Utah.html#86560137″><img alt=”” src=”http://media-cdn.tripadvisor.com/media/photo-s/05/28/cd/89/ben-lomond-suites-historic.jpg”/></a><br/>This photo of Ben Lomond Suites Historic Hotel, an Ascend Collection Hotel is courtesy of TripAdvisor

We went to dinner at the Prairie Schooner.  It has lots of atmosphere.

We sat in the far end left covered wagon during dinner.  It was quiet and intimate with the cover over the table.  On the wall was an old fashioned lantern that we could turn up or down for more or less light.

The next morning we explored the antique shop in the basement of the hotel.  That was really fun and we bought some souvenirs for ourselves there.  This was my find.

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Hand quilted

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The hand stitching is crooked and large and I love it.

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I have no idea how old it is – but it has been washed and it is wrinkly.  The top picture of it on the fence is where it is going to hang in my quilting studio Thursday at 10:30 am.  Actually it is already hanging there and I think I am going to leave it during preschool graduation.  My hubby, of course, got an old tool – a hand saw to display in his wood shop.

All in all – I had a wonderful time celebrating our marriage vs being single – it has been a wonderful 23 years and I am looking forward to eternity with him!

Have you been to any cool places lately or found a lovely antique you couldn’t pass up?  Happy Wednesday! (complete side note – 2 more days of school!  yay!)

It’s 3:45 a.m. and I am sewing WHAT?!

My sweet son had his class Rendezvous this past week.  I volunteered to sew 10 of these possibles bags for class so they would have something to carry all their goodies they make and bought at the trading post.

Possibles Bags for 4th Grade Rendevous

Possibles Bags for 4th Grade Rendevous

He loved the striped one – it was unique because I only had enough fabric to make one.  So that one became his bag. Two days before the big event, I sent all the bags to school with him.

Brownie modeling the bonnet

Brownie modeling the bonnet


















I also volunteered to donate some items for the trading post.  I sewed 2 bonnets (matching) and donated one more we had picked up somewhere along the way.  The little girls are so cute.  They wear bonnets for their class program and always want to keep them, so I thought some in the trading post would be awesome for them.  I also donated some wooden snakes, harmonicas and marbles…you know, great boy stuff.

Pioneer Bonnet for trading post

Pioneer Bonnet for trading post














Cutest, most simple bonnet pattern anywhere.  If you want the pattern, LMK.

I  volunteered the day of the Rendezvous to help with the Pioneer games station from 8:30 to noon.  It consisted of marbles, jacks, grace, and a game made out of tuna cans nailed to a board and a bean bag.  It was harder than it sounds. Grace is super fun.  We learned it volunteering at our local state pioneer park during the summers.  It is a hoop wrapped in fabric with 2 straight sticks. You flick it to your partner and catch the hoop with the sticks.

I felt I had contributed quite enough to this event….but turns out NOT.  Thursday night at 9:30 pm – YES, P.M. I get an email from the room mom saying another class had a communication break down and their class had NO bags for the students.  Could I possibly sew some more bags?  I emailed back and said yes.  10 possibly 15.  I finished up the 15th at 1:30 am and checked my email one last time before I went to bed – remember, I am getting up in the morning to go volunteer.  Big mistake to check – another email asking if I could possibly make 5 or 10 more had come through at 12:12 am.  Somehow I had missed the ding notification on my phone.  I was so tempted to go to bed but then I thought how my cute son would feel if he were one of the 10 who did NOT get a bag for their big day.  So I went downstairs, dug through the fabric stash to find something non-girly and tubs of ribbon and started sewing again. It this point I figured she wasn’t getting any other help from the 4 classes so I actually sewed 12 more so everyone would be sure to get one.  The non-girly fabric I found was some curtain fabric that I used in my front room several years ago.  This is my proof – I was up!













I finished up the bags shortly after 3:45 am and got in bed after 4 am – only to get back up at 6:15.  I got 2 hours sleep that 42 hour period.  I didn’t even get mean and rotten.  I was proud of myself for that!  I took the bags with me when I went to volunteer.  Come to find out another mom and stayed up sewing as well.  When it was all said and done – 13 of the bags I donated didn’t get used.  When I left, I went and got them – after all Blondie will be having rendezvous in a couple of years and I can donate them WITHOUT having to stay up 40 hours straight!

I often lay in bed at night wanting to sneak out and sew (but I am a realist and know that me sleeping is a much better option for everyone around me – haha) but staying up all night to sew possibles bags would NOT have been my choice of project – give me a quilt to piece!

What have you stayed up to sew?!  Was it choice or desperation?

Civil War Quilt Project

I didn’t realize that I was such a fan of this time period.  As I reflect on purchases over the last few years, I realize I have accumulated books, a whole series of CD’s, this quilting book and most recently for my birthday, I was lucky enough to get this gorgeous bundle of reproduction fabrics from Moda. It is the Ladies’ Album by Barbara Brackman.  I found the bundle shown on a blog I recently discovered,  Civil War Quilts.  It is the blog of the fabric designer, Barbara Brackman.  She fills it full of interesting history and has a BOM program this year.  As soon as I finish Amy Gibsons 2012 BOM quilt I would like to start Barbara’s with this bundle. I am having a hard time taking the ribbon off because it is so beautiful all stacked together.   ImageAnother shot so you can enjoy all the beautiful colors better.  Mine was ordered from Missouri Star Quilt Company.  libby, civil war quilt 019 I also keep checking out this book from the library called The Civil War Love Letter Quilt. It has 121 quilt blocks and each block is accompanied by a real letter from a soldier in the Civil War. The author, Rosemary Youngs, has another book called The Civil War Dairy Quilt that I would love to have as well. antique quilt 021 The Utah Quilt Guild has Quilt Fest in September and I want to make this quilt and enter it into the show.  My first ever – I am nervous and excited. It is a small wall hanging – 33 1/2 x 33 1/2.  Sooner or later I am going to have to untie my beautiful bundle and get busy cutting it.   Image   This is a pattern from my Civil War Legacies book shown above.  I purchased mine at Jo-Anne’s.  The quilt calls for 96 2 1/8″ squares that turn into 192 triangles.  I love half square triangles.  The star blocks are only 7 1/2″ square.  It is small but it will be so pretty. Do you have a favorite time period for quilting or a block?  I would love to here what and why.  Have a fabulous mid week day!