Wednesday, April 30, 2008

I wish I could write about all the sewing I had done, but I can't. I embroidered two baby pillow fronts on Monday and tried to work on the 4 H patches again yesterday. I must be too picky. I hate the way they look. Why oh why can't I find a way to get these patches done that look decent to me? I am tired today for some reason. I guess it's the weather. This morning when I got up at 2:30 a.m. it was 35 degrees. Just a couple of days ago it was in the 60's at 2:30 a.m. I had better be off to do some things around the house.

Sew Long for Now!

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Pictures of our bees. They have been put in the hive and the queen has been added. We heard they are taking to it well. They will be here soon.

This is our queen being added.

Showing our bees working building honeycombs on our supers.

This is a picture of the bees before being added.

Captain Chaos has really gotten into this idea. He is getting excited to see the bees. I checked books out of the library on beekeeping and he is devouring them. He keeps telling me what he is learning. I love to see a child so interested in a subject. Especially this child who sometimes tends to live in a fantasy world of Star Wars and Bionicles. To see him take to this real life adventure makes my heart soar. Now this is what makes homeschooling so great, I can give him the time and space to develop this love. He can study bees to his hearts content and doesn't have to be stopped because they are not on the SOL's. He can learn the history of beekeeping and not get behind in a mandated history curricula. He can learn about a bee's anatomy and that their sense of smell is located near their stinger, their heart is shapped like little hot dogs put together where most things spines are and not worry he has science he hasn't done. He can write a paper on anything about bees he wants and it will count for his English. Do you get the feeling I love hands on learning. My greatest dream of homeschooling would be to study history by being able to visit all the historic spots in the world as we do it...sigh. I would love to go to Rome to study the Roman Empire, travel the Oregon Trail to study the history of pioneers moving west, or visit the battle fields of Europe to study World War II. Wouldn't that be the ultimate learning?

Sew Long for Now!

Monday, April 28, 2008

Sunday after church Captain Kitty and I made some cards together. I needed some thank you cards and she made some generic cards for us to use as needed. I used to make cards a lot more often, but lately I seem to never find the time or strength to get out all the supplies. I was dreaming how nice it would be to set aside Sunday afternoons between church and when the General gets home from work to card making. Maybe we can make it happen?

These delightful "bee" cards are for the folks who helped us get our beehive together.
These other cards are thank you's to customers who have given us a tip this month. This first card is one I colored. Sometimes even as an adult I enjoy coloring. Isn't it nice it can be something useful so I can excuse my childish desire!
A little fun with flowers.

Sew Long for Now!

Sunday, April 27, 2008

Just popping in briefly this morning waiting to get ready for church. Yesterday was a great day to get things accomplished. I put two zippers in, embroidered a hat, repaired a hole in a skirt, made four pillow cases out of an old sheet, cleaned the bathroom, swept the livingroom, ironed, did a load of laundry, and other assorted small tasks. Wow, it felt nice to have a sense of accomplishment.

This is a sweatshirt some one brought me and ask me to cut the center and put a full zipper in.
Here is another one the same person wanted only a zipper half way down the front in.
This is four pillow cases I made out of a white flat sheet. I paid like $4 for the sheet for our oldest son for college. He ended up not needing as many as the list said so he brought me the extra. I love recycling.

Sew Long for Now!

Saturday, April 26, 2008

Stacey at Your Sacred Calling has put into words what I have been struggling with.

Sew Long for Now!

Friday, April 25, 2008

Yesterday our bee hive was delivered. The General is so excited. He refers to himself as becoming a bee wrangler. LOL. It's nice to see him excited about this. I took Captain Chaos, who has not been so chaotic this week, to the doctor yesterday and he has strep. I found time to embroider four more shirts and hang out two loads of clothes. This morning I have already embroidered four more shirts. Captain Kitty has a violin recital tomorrow so I am trying to get caught up on things. I am hoping the General will mow this weekend so I can rake the yard and put some of the clippings in my compost bin. Yesterday I took the kitchen bucket up and emptied it. I ripped up some newspaper and mixed it in. We were going to put the garden in this weekend even though our area still has chance of frost until May 10, but with extra music lessons today and recital tomorrow we are going to wait until next weekend. We usually buy most of our plants already started so it shouldn't hamper growing season too much.

Sew Long for Now!

picture found at

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Yesterday I embroidered four more shirts for a customer. I also hung out two loads of laundry. I did most of Captain Chaos' chores since he was sick. In the evening while cleaning up after supper I noticed the shadows through out the house and took some pictures to share. The above picture is of a pitcher sitting beside the kitchen sink. Isn't it beautiful with the shadow falling on it? Oh, and I looked down CC's throat-white splotches. Today he is feeling a bit better but we are going to the doctor. Strep maybe?

late afternoon sunlight streaming through a kitchen window.

afternoon sunlight peeking through the living room window.

Sew Long for Now!

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

The sun's come out today! It has been rainy for several days and I am so glad to see the sun. Yesterday I got a good amount of sewing done. I repaired a pair of jeans our daughter had ripped riding a bike and I embroidered four shirts. I also did the dreaded task of going to the grocery store. Today I hope to get some more shirts embroidered, some clothes hung out, and what ever else comes up. Captain Chaos is ill. He has had a fever and soar throat for three days. I made him do his lessons the first two, but the General said he could have a rest today and lay around all day.

I thought about writing something concerning my overwhelm when reading mommy blogs around the blogsphere. I can't it's too depressing. I just am not worldly savvy as other moms and I don't think I want to be. I read one mom's post about how after staying home for six years she feels unchallenged. Sigh, 13 years of being a mostly SAHW and I somehow never find time in my day to contemplate those type of deep thoughts. I seem to be always challenged. I am challenged to climb the mountain of laundry everyday. I am challenged to clear the mountain of dirt every day. I am challenged to find something to feed the family everyday, and not make the boring same things day in and day out. I am challenged on stretching our thin finances even further these days with the rocketing prices. Some days I have even more challenges then I want when I have to deal with a sick child. Sorry world that I don't have time to worry about whether has been banned from China or not. I don't know how these women do all their home tasks and have enough time to keep on top of worldly finance, politics, religion, etc. It makes me feel guilty for not being able to.
Sew Long for Now!

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Good morning!

I don't know about celebrating earth day as a one day holiday, but a reminder never hurt any one. We, here at our house believe God gives us the earth and all that's in it to be stewards of. We try very hard to be good stewards. We try to live eco friendly every day, not just one day a year. Some of the things we do here is of course grow our own veggies in the summer. We never use any chemicals when we do, we never have. Like last year this year we will have two plots in our yard. I would love to one day have some fruit trees and strawberry beds. Last year I found tons of wild strawberries growing in our yard and tried to cultivate them, but they didn't work so very well. We recycle. We have always recycled some paper and plastic, but a while back I found out our city takes even more types of paper and plastic and so we had to ask for another bin because I started to add more. This spring we started a compost bin. I have been wanting to do this for a while, but never made the time. My goal is to see how little garbage we can put out weekly for pick-up. Another project we are starting this week is bee keeping. We starting talking about having our own hives this past winter. Last year the honeybee population was so down where we live that it was hard to get pollination for our garden. God made a way for us to get started. A friend of the General's from work is a bee keeper and he offered to help us get going and gave us the info on how. We have friends at church who are bee keepers and sell honey for a living. I mentioned to them this past Sunday that we were going to start a hive, but it would probably be next spring before we could afford to buy all the gear. I got a call yesterday that this family is giving us a hive! I just cried because of the generosity! Thursday they are setting up the hive and the General's friend has already secured us bees! God is good. I wanted to get some chickens also, but that might be too many new projects in one year. We buy a lot of our clothes at the Goodwill, we also donate all our outgrown things to either friends who need them or the Goodwill. We buy a lot of our things second hand. My eliptical machine we bought used at a store in town that sells used sports equipment. One thing I have not done yet, but have been wanting to is bring my own bags to the grocery. Hopefully I will get some made soon. In the meantime I have a coupon for a free bag at Krogers and will redeem that today. We do not use convience foods very often. We usually cook from scratch here. We buy a lot of fresh foods so there is not a lot of packaging. I hang out our clothes when ever possible. It is not so hard to make these simple changes in your life. Go for it!

Sew Long for Now!

Saturday, April 19, 2008

The past two mornings the moon has been just awesome. About 5 a.m. the moon has been so big and orange. As I am driving along it gets to this point right before it drops below the horizon when it seems to sit on the mountains. At times like this when you see the handywork of our Lord I don't mind getting up at 2:30 a.m. every day.

Yesterday I put the invisible zipper in the prom dress and embroidered two shirts. Yeah I got everything I planned done. That maybe it for sewing until Monday. I have loads of other stuff I need to do, but I also need to do some family things also.

Sew Long for Now!

Friday, April 18, 2008

I took a picture of the box of finished aprons, but that picture is boring. This picture of the VMI bagpipes is more exciting! Don't they look handsome? Thirty aprons are embroidered and delivered. I started another set of patches for 4H yesterday, but didn't have time to finish them. Today I need to put an invisible zipper in and embroider two shirts. At least that's the plan for sewing. The housework plan is more extensive with cleaning and laundry that needs attention. The weather forcast is for a nice day so I am off the enjoy it.
Sew Long for Now!

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

This first picture is to make you smile. This is on my husband's table saw on our back porch. When I walked by it the other day all I could think was this is a man's version of a table center piece! Isn't it cute.
Here at Castle Verde I love green, inside and out. Most people know that almost every room in our home is a shade of green. Yesterday, as we were out and about, I breathed in the nice spring air and looking around noticed how green it was suddenly getting. The leaves are starting to appear. The air is at just that right stage at this time of year that the sky is that gorgeous shade of blue. This is a tree in our backyard. Isn't the sky lovely, isn't the tree beautiful!
This morning as I hung out laundry (with my gloves on because it got cold last night!) I was looking at the grass and noticing it turning green. I saw the sunshine and shadows from the line and thought what a beautiful scene. It's warmed up now. The day is progressing nice. I am getting housework done, lessons with the children are moving right along, my sewing machine is humming away beside me. Oh, it makes me joyful and thankful when I get to do the things I love. I am finishing up the aprons today. Next up is putting a new zipper in a prom dress for a young lady.

Sew Long for Now!

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

An embroidery I digitized and completed for a customer. I have been getting some sewing work done. Brrrr, it has gotten chilly again. I prefer 70 degrees and sunny!

Usually when I go to the grocery store I buy a lot of groceries at one time. Yesterday while Captain Kitty was at drama practice I dropped into a Krogers near where I was and picked up two items. One of those being six Roma tomatoes. I had a lot of change and had figured in my head approximately how much it would cost. One item was 69 cents and then 1 1/2 lbs of Romas at 1.79 a pound. I figured around $4. I had that much change. When the cashier finished ringing me up he said $7 and something. I did a double take. He ask if I had a Kroger card and I had forgot to give it to him so I handed it to him and he swiped it, but it didn't change my cost. I told him it was wrong. I said those Romas were 1.79 per pound. He told me I hadn't bought Romas I had bought vine ripe tomatoes the sticker said so. I being a some what knowledgable gardener laughed. I told him no they were Romas (different shape you know.) He (being about 18 and not seeming to know his tomatoes) told me I was wrong. I told him if I was wrong I didn't want those tomatoes. I spotted the produce manager and ask the cashier to double check with him. He took my bag of tomatoes over and spent a few minutes arguing with the produce manager. Like the produce manager nor myself knew what we were talking about, the sticker was the final say! It seems the produce manager won the debate and the guy had to come back over and change my price in the register. There is a moral to this, not just to show my knowledge of tomatoes. Always check your receipt when you go to the store. I buy lots of produce and it makes me wonder how many times I have been missed charged. One time I spent a long time in line because I bought zucchini and the young man (another young guy cashier) couldn't figure out what code to put in. He kept asking me what they were. He didn't know and he couldn't find zucchini on his list. I suggested he look under squash. Sure enough they were listed under squash-zucchini. It also makes me a little sad that young people don't know vegetables. Maybe it's just here, I do live in a sort of large city.

Sew Long for Now!

Sunday, April 13, 2008

I don't often include pictures of myself because I am the one usually taking the pictures. The General took this picture Friday when we went to VMI to pick up our eldest son. This was right after the parade. Our son plays the tuba in the VMI band. He just learned this year. He wanted to learn the bagpipes and has a chanter, I forgot to ask him how that was going. He took guitar lessons growing up and taught himself to play the base guitar. I hear he played the clarinet for a while in the band. All my children have a musical gene. It skipped me, but my grandparents were very good musicians. I have encouraged them in learning music. Even if they never do anything with it I think music is a great skill to have and enjoy.

The weekend has been nice. Friday and Saturday the weather was good. I got oodles done. Friday I embroidered three burp clothes for a lady, and four more aprons besides the trip up to Lexington. Saturday with all my guys here they helped me build a compost bin and I hung out laundry. The wind was blowing nicely and it was a perfect day to hang out clothes. They dried rather quickly. That is the first time I have used the clothes line since last fall. Today the weather has gotten chillier and they are calling for flurries in some parts.

I have been reading Patty's postings about being in the moment over at Morning Ramble and it hit me while hanging out laundry on Saturday that some time (most of the time) I am always hurrying around. I work a part-time job 7 days a week/365 days a year, I sew for people out of our home, I homeschool our children, I take care of all the indoor housework, gardening, and finances of our home. I do this for lots of reasons. My husband works a very physically demanding job and up until December of 08 he worked two physically demanding jobs. He had to give one up because he has now been diagnosed with Muscular Dystrophy. I do whatever I can to make his life easier and I want to do that. It's just that at times I feel overwhelmed. So, back to the clothes line. As I was standing there hanging clothes, feeling the warm breeze, and watching the guys putting up my compost bin it occurred to me that I could rush off and go do one of the thousands of tasks that needed my attention or I could stop a minute and watch them. Take a minute to walk up the hill and join in. I could enjoy the moment of having my two sons and husband together. Something that doesn't happen all the time these days since our oldest is growing up. I did. It didn't take hours out of my day and I still was able to come down to the sewing room and work on projects after. It made me think I need to do that more. I guess I need to pay attention more. Pay attention to the people around me. Stop a minute. I thought back and realized over the past several years how many times I spoke to my children while doing a task. I have a bad habit of thinking that I have to always be working with my hands. I guess it is from growing up with the saying, "idle hands are the devils workshop" drilled into me. I still think they can be, but sometimes especially when your children hit those teen years they need your to stop and just be with them more than doing for them. Sigh...will I ever learn things in time before it's too late.

Sew Long for Now!

Friday, April 11, 2008

I feel so much better these days. I have changed my sleeping pattern so I get 7-8 straight hours of sleep each night. I have changed my eating pattern so I can eat more raw and healthy foods. The only thing I was struggling with was getting exercise. Yesterday I made myself find time for a 20 minute walk. Last night the General took my to a local store that sells used and new fitness equipment. I found a used elyptical machine for a reasonable price and we brought it home. We live in a fairly small home so it will be in the way at times, but our health is worth the sacrifice of home beautiful. This morning I began learning to use it. I made it five minutes. Five minutes and I was out of breath and my body felt wobbly. I am going to give it another five minutes this afternoon and work my way into 20 minutes of straight use. I feel so much better because I have actually been getting some of the sewing done that is piling up. The picture is of the aprons I am embroidering for a local church. They have a full time kitchen there and wanted 30 aprons embroidered. I am slowly getting through the pile. I also finished digitizing both the designs I was working on and one will be sewn out this weekend on the finished product. I have also found time to work on my bag. It is almost complete. I need to rip the bottom off and re-work it, but it is nice to see it coming along.

Life seems nice right now. I have been smelling honeysuckle as I work. I love the smell of honeysuckle. Last night while delivering papers I caught the scent of wild onions and newly mowed grass. I love smells. I don't know why. They trigger memories in me. Well, off to sew and then to VMI this afternoon to watch the parade and pick up our son for the weekend.

Sew Long for Now!

Wednesday, April 02, 2008

I chose a picture with a view from my parents back porch. It is so much more inspiring than a picture of what I have been working on, a computer screen. I have been digitizing two designs this week. I am so excited the first one sewed out with only a slight change needing to be made. The second I will sew out later. I am afraid I am still working on the patches. Sigh...I just can't get them the way I want them. I also haven't got to the pocketbook again, either.

On the bright side, lessons have been completed every day and I finally got my kitchen floor washed this morning. I feel I have accomplished something. In just a little while the General will be home so I must be off to finish things so I can be available for him when he gets here!

Sew Long for Now!

Tuesday, April 01, 2008

After almost a month of not sleeping and a major melt down for me I had to give in and change my routine drastically. I began last Thursday going to bed at 6:30 P.M. It was so heavenly to sleep for 8 straight hours. I hadn't done that for a year. It may take a while to get used to this new schedule and so I hope to get back to getting more sewing done. I haven't been able to lately because of exhaustion. On Friday we spent the day up in the mountains for the General's birthday. Spring is playing peek a boo with us here.

Sew Long for Now!