Thursday, May 27, 2010

Looks can be deceiving

Don't let the cuteness fool you.

This is trouble looking for an opportunity to happen.

Baby boy and his bride can't have pets at TSF (they live in dorms on campus) and won't be able to have pets when they go to New York so Nicholas has come to live with us.

I had hoped to have a give-a-way ready before Memorial Day but that is not going to happen. It is hard to sew and keep an eye on he-who-can't-be-trusted at the same time.

I've ordered a couple of gates to hopefully at least keep him off the carpet when I'm not right there to watch him, but even when they come (at least a week!) I'm not sure they will keep him contained. He seems to find his way around most roadblocks.

If I'm scarce around here, now you know why.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Home again

We left Minneapolis Wednesday morning. Again, the hubby thought it a good idea to take a scenic route - nothing wrong with that, just a long trip in front of us and this route took us across to Wisconsin rather than down to Iowa. Anywho - it was pretty and we likely won't ever be back that way. We stopped and he took some pics.

Back on the road again - once we made it into Iowa (at least I think that is where this was taken) Someone pulled over on the interstate to take pictures again.

For some reason, hubby is fascinated with these windmills. Yes, they are HUGE - but we also have them in Texas! (see the trees? they look like bushes but they are actually large trees) # 1 looked it up on the way up and I think he said they are 26 stories tall. This was taken in the middle of the day - as you can see, the sky doesn't look too friendly. We kept getting weather reports on the radio about thunderstorm and flood warnings but that doesn't do you a whole lot of good when you don't know what county you are in! Fortunately we only encountered light to moderate rain most of the trip. We were trying to make it to Kansas City before stopping for the night and that is where we hit a wall of falling water! Probably not 5 miles from where we were going to stop for the night and the 'bottom fell out'. (if that isn't a phrase you use where you live, it means it was raining so hard you could barely see your hand in front of your face! We were down to maybe 15mph and still could barely see the front of the car, much less anything in front of us)

The weather was better on Thursday. Somewhere along the way hubby turned the car over to Ashley and she drove us back into Texas.
Approx 2500 miles in a week. That is a lot of time on the road! Since I've already shown pics of graduation this is the end of the travel pics except for one of the stitching I did while on the road (haven't taken a pic of it yet)
I've been working on a few things since we got home - if I ever actually finish anything I'll share some pics of those projects with you. Guess I should get up out of this chair and get busy if I want to finish anything!

Monday, May 24, 2010


When we went to Minneapolis the first time (to move the kids up) we didn't have time to visit the Guthrie where Ashley was going to be working, so this time she took us on a 'private' tour. It was very interesting. We got to see rehearsal rooms, where they build the sets, behind and under the stage. Everyone we met was very nice. The building is huge and I don't know how you ever learn your way around - we just followed Ashley!

This is a picture of the building (click to enlarge) It is a big blue structure but you can see some yellow windows and see that little yellow box sticking out on the right side? That is an observation window. There is even a spot on the floor that you can stand on and look out (down). Hubby stood there - I did not. :)

I'm not sure if hubby took this picture of downtown from the observation deck or from one of the other yellow windows.

This one was taken from the observation deck - you can see the top of the endless bridge - that is where the next four pictures were taken from. It was cold and very windy!

I'm sure on days when it is not so cold and windy this would be a very peaceful place to just sit and think.

On Tuesday night, Jason and Ashley took us to see the show she had been working on.

Of course, you can't take pictures inside the theater.

After the show, hubby took the kids back out on the bridge to get a picture.

Wednesday morning we loaded up for the trip home. You can load a lot of 'stuff' in a Honda Pilot! Not as many pictures of the trip home, but I'll show you those next time.

Saturday, May 22, 2010

A long and winding road

During my little blog break we went on a trip. A long trip. We went to Minnesota to pick up baby boy's bride and bring her back to Texas. If you were reading here last year you might remember they went up with a U-haul, plus two vehicles (ours and theirs). They came back with only what would fit in the two vehicles (including a desk that used to belong to hubby's dad - more on that later) They will be moving to New York in August with what they can take on the plane and in a few boxes they will ship.
Anyway - we left here on Thursday evening and spent two nights with my parents before leaving for Minnesota on Saturday. We went through Tyler and picked up #1 son - he went with us and stayed to drive back with baby boy so he wouldn't have to drive the whole trip by himself. Instead of going the 'fastest route' like we did last time (when we were pulling a trailer) we took a scenic route the first day. It was a pretty drive but not a lot of places to pull over and take pics. Two lane roads with lots of curves and a lot of them had rock on one side and nothing but a big drop-off on the other side.

There was one place we pulled over where hubby and #1 got out and took this pic. (I think this was in Missouri) Let me just take a minute here to say, it has been flip flop weather in Texas for quite some time. In fact our afternoons have been hot. Nice mornings but hot in the afternoon. Before we made it half-way through the first day, I had been in the suitcase looking for socks and tennis shoes. Thank goodness I took them or I would have been shoe shopping). I usually try to remember to take a jacket if we are going to be in the car a lot because I usually end up getting cold. I wore that ratty jacket A LOT - and not just in the car!
Anyway, we spent the night in Kansas City, Mo., then on day two (Mother's Day) we hadn't gone far when the GPS routed us around some heavy traffic and we came across this.

The James Farm (as in Jesse James)
Somewhere along the way, legend has it, hubby's family supposedly crosses the James family. Not sure how exactly (his grandmother was a James) but we took a detour for a look-see at the farm.
No pictures were allowed inside the museum or home but here are a few from outside.

The shorter side was the original house and the 'tall' side was a later addition. There was a film crew there that day - not sure what they were filming, but it looked like some kind of documentary or something.

Jesse's mother had him buried where she could see his grave from her bed.

When the home was restored, they left off part of the siding to show the original logs. There is also a spot inside where they left the logs exposed. Not sure about the little building behind the house - looks like a storage building but I don't remember if the guide said anything about that or not.

The slave cabin.

After that two-plus hour detour, which took us to around noon, we drove the rest of the way to Minneapolis and made it there around 7:30ish. It was NOT flip-flop weather in Minnesota. The farther north we got, the colder it got. It didn't get warm again until we made our last stop in Oklahoma on the way home!
I will show you what we did in Minneapolis in my next post.
Hope you are having a great weekend.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Purple Charm Quilt

I need volunteers for a quilt tree. The reason I am asking here is that I have a very small circle of quilting friends and it has been tapped out by previous participants. I only want to send it to people who truly want to participate.
Here is the deal - I will send you a letter with two six-inch (purple) fabric squares, you in turn will send two squares to the person on the top of the list and two squares to four other people, so a total of ten, six inch squares. If it works like it should, you should receive 72 squares in return. Honestly, I've never done one of these that actually worked which is another reason I'm asking for volunteers rather than just sending it randomly.
If you are interested, send me an email with 'Purple Charm Quilt' in the subject line. (email is in profile)
Sorry no pics today - still trying to play catch up and baby boy and his bride are going to be here for a visit tonight so I need to go grocery shopping for dinner. (I didn't know they were coming until late yesterday!)
Back soon (depending on what time they leave tomorrow) with more pics from the past two weeks.
Have a great day!

Monday, May 17, 2010

I'm back!

Whew - it has been a long couple of weeks! I had hoped to at least keep up with email and blogs but that didn't happen and I am way behind.
I won't try to condense the past two weeks into one long post - I'll spread it out over a few.
This past Saturday (I'm starting at the end) baby boy's bride, Ashley, graduated from SFA. (Hubby had possession of the camera so he took these pictures)

Finding one person in a sea of black robes isn't an easy task but we finally spotted her.

It is so hard to believe they are both out of school now. (if you are new here, baby boy graduated last May) It seems like just yesterday we were taking them over for a tour of the campus. So many things have happened over the past five years!
Most of you know that Jason (baby boy) and Ashley have spent the last 9 months in Minnesota where she was interning (as a stage manager) at The Guthrie Theater. Baby boy did not get to attend graduation as he is still in Minnesota but will start making his way back to Texas today. (he was in a play in St. Paul that did not close until last night so he couldn't come back with Ashley)
They will both be in Texas for the summer, working in Kilgore at the Texas Shakespeare Festival. It will be nice having them in Texas for a few months, even though we won't get to see them on a daily basis - it is just nice knowing they are within a reasonable driving distance after being so far away. It won't last long though as they will be heading to New York in August.
That is it for today. I have much catching up to do (both online and off!) but I hope to be back to somewhat regular posting for now anyway.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

In broad daylight

We had a visitor yesterday afternoon - as you can see, it is broad daylight!

He/she (not sure which and not getting close enough to find out - we will just assume it is a he) came alone this time - last time there were two and it was dark.

Really doesn't like being watched and if he could only get that corn cob off the feeder he would leave.

Then Autumn spied the visitor

and chased him

but he stopped at the next feeder to see if maybe that cob would come off - nope

and back the other way before he finally decided the he was going to have to leave without the prize. He came back later - after dark - and finished off what corn was left.

I'm going to take a little blogging break to tend to some family business. Nothing bad, just time consuming so I'm going to take a week or so off from posting. I'll try to stop by for visits when I have a minute - maybe I can keep from being so far behind reading blogs - maybe not.

Hope you all have a wonderful Mother's Day weekend and I'll see ya back here in a week or so!

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

More patio pics

Here is another picture of the patio. Kind of hard to remember what the house looked like before it was there!

Still not finished but the rest will be slow moving. I'm going to put some kind of curtains on both ends to block out the sun in the mornings and evenings (the patio faces south) and for a little privacy. We used the furniture we had from the old house (there are two more chairs behind the rockers) We had both a front and back porch there and this is the furniture from the front porch. I want some kind of eating space but as you can see there is not much room left so I'm on the lookout for a small 'bistro' set. I'll move the dog house off and put it there. (Autumn never goes inside that doghouse - I really don't know why we even keep it!) We plan to use pavers or brick to make another pad off of the patio to have a place for a grill. There is also a pretty big step off of parts of it so we need to build some kind of steps.

We are still having nice mornings and evenings (gets pretty warm in the middle of the day) so we have spent some time out there. This is the view from the patio. Kinda bare, huh? I want to put in flower beds around the fence and put something back there to block the utility boxes (nice to not have overhead lines, but then you get these ugly boxes in the back yard) but it will be in baby steps. I've done the 'from scratch' thing before and it is just more than a weekend project!
Yes, the umbrella is broken. Wind took it completely out of the table a while back but I figured we could use it as is this year and maybe replace it next year - or maybe I'll get lucky and find a good deal at the end of the summer.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010


I went outside to water plants this morning and found this. I usually just water the hanging baskets with them still hanging but I thought they might get a better drink if I sat them down on the ground - after I put this one down I found this bird nest. I have no idea how long it has been there so I don't know if there were more eggs and this one just failed to hatch or if mama bird was somewhere watching me. I put the basket back up on the hook - I guess I will just have to wait and see what happens.
Critters seem to be everywhere here - last night hubby saw something on the squirrel feeder - we knew we had a raccoon but last night there were two out there! (and we don't live in the country!) Of course as soon as the dog spots one she runs them off, but they come right back. No wonder the corn disappears so quickly!

Monday, May 3, 2010

Ignore the wrinkles

I could say the same thing if I were putting a picture of myself on here, but it is just a pic of my stitching!

This is one of the 'skunk' projects from the get-a-way last month. I haven't ironed it yet and I stitched it in-hand so it is a bit wrinkled. You really can't tell much about it from that pic huh?

It is a scissor pocket! Here is what it looks like after it is all finished off. (this is not my piece - it is the sample from class - I took pictures so I would have something to look at when finishing time came)

I used a couple of beads for his eyes on the inside flap(instead of French knots) - I could only find regular size beads but I might go back and replace them with petite ones before I sew it all together. Since I haven't even started stitching the companion pieces (there are 3 more!) I should have plenty of time to hunt down some petite beads. I'm sure I have some - I just don't know exactly where at the moment.