Sunday, July 20, 2014

Just catching up...

Hi, thought I'd write to catch you up on what's been going on.

Tonight, is the closing night of my vacation.  I sadly bid it adieu, as I prepare to go back to work tomorrow.

I have been able to accomplish quite a bit this past week and hope to have pictures to show you of the work I've done towards a sewing room.

I was able to catch up on sewing/quilting too and am happy to report I accomplished quite a bit on the Log Cabin quilt I have been working on.

Here's a pic to remind you what it looks like. It was laid out to be sewn into 7 sections.  I sewed all the sections and am happy to say I now have all the sections sewn together into one complete piece and am ready to add borders and finish the back.  Remember this is a "quilt as you go" quilt.


I also made curtains this week.  I made them for under $10.00.

How?

By using twin flat sheets.

I made measurements of the windows I needed to cover.  I used the top border of the sheets as the hems for the curtains.  I then took the bottom of the sheets and folded them 19" over the sheet.  Then marked 3" from the fold and sewed across the width of the sheet, this made a hem to above the curtain pocket.  Then I measure 4" from the sewn seam and sewed across the width of the sheet.  This created the pocket for the curtain rod to go through.  The remaining 12" of the sheet created the valance.  It is a very easy way to make curtains and on a budget too.  :)


Another thing I had time to do this week, was bead work.  Now understand I'm new at beading but I decided to make a bracelet as a gift for someone.   Here is how it turned out.


Then to round the week off nicely, I enjoyed the love and laughter of family.  The best part of my entire week though was talking to my son on the phone.  He is doing well, getting settled in at his new home, and sounds good.

That's it for now. Here's wishing you a wonderful week ahead!

Hugs,
Sonia



Thursday, July 10, 2014

Milestone

It was a cool morning, but had a sticky feel in the air, so I knew today was going to be a humid day.

It was also a milestone in a parent's life for me and David and for our son.  Joshua moved out today.  He moved out in a big way, like around 350 miles away, kind of way.  I know that many parents have survived this particular milestone but until you experience it, it truly doesn't hit home.  As I talked to my son and helped him get some last minute items boxed up, this morning, I told him it was probably the first time in my 29 years of "work life" that I woke up without an alarm and was ready for work with plenty of time, and I mean plenty of time to spare.  We chuckled about it and he told me I was just "antsy" because of the day, and he was right.

I'm excited for him and am very proud of the young man he has become.  I know that he will do well and am trusting God to watch over him, since I can't anymore.  

So it began around 6:00 a.m.  He and a friend of his who helped him move drove away with their cars loaded down and packed to the seams.

6 hours and 52 minutes later I received a text saying he made it safely and was moved in.

The worst part for me is in the moments where I am alone with my thoughts, like at work.  I know you are probably thinking "at work?", but when you have job that is rather mundane, it is easy for your mind to dwell on others things as you accomplish your work.  So when the sadness over my son moving out would try to creep in I made a conscious effort to stop, take a deep breath, let it out slowly, and try to think of something else.  That doesn't mean my eyes stayed dry all day; I would be lying if I told you they did.  I had some tears of worry and sadness at first, then some tears of relief and joy when I knew he was safe.  I was able to hold it together for the most part and want to thank my family and friends who prayed for Joshua's safety while traveling and who prayed for me to be able to cope with it today.  I honestly believe the power of those prayers helped me get through the day.

I mentioned at the top of this blog the stickiness in the air this morning... well I got a taste of the fruits of that humidity on my lunch break today.  A storm moved in.  It wasn't too bad when I left for lunch, but it got heavier and darker as my lunch hour progressed.  I stayed out in my car for most of my lunch and as I sat there it got to where it was raining so hard I couldn't see out my car windows and my car was being buffeted by the wind.  When it let up a little, I grabbed my handbag and my umbrella and made a mad dash to the office.  Needless to say with the wind blowing and rain coming down like it was, my umbrella didn't help much.  I was soggy when I got in and the gray hairs I have been blessed with were having a dance party on my head.

I have next week off and I'm very ready for it.  I'm hope to get some sewing done.

Well, that's if for now.  Hope all is going well for you and yours.
Hugs, 
Sonia

Sunday, July 6, 2014

Yummy for the Tummy...

Thought I'd share a couple of recipes with you I tried this weekend.

The first recipe is a breakfast casserole I threw together.   My bunch really liked it and to be honest I think it may have been the best "thrown together" breakfast I've ever made.  :)

Sonia's Breakfast Casserole
1/2 bag of tator tots
1/4 - 1/2 green pepper chopped
8 oz. chopped cooked ham
5 eggs
Greek seasoning, to taste (or your favorite spice)
salt and pepper to taste
1 cup of shredded cheese

In a large bowl, combine the tator tots, peppers, and ham, salt and pepper.  Mix well.  Crack the five eggs into a separate bowl and add the Greek season and whisk as for scrambled eggs.  Add the eggs to the tator tot mixture, add the shredded cheese and mix all together.  Pour into a oiled casserole dish and back at 425° F for 20 - 25 minutes until set and golden brown.

This second recipe is a basic yellow cake recipe I used to make cupcakes. It came from my Taste of Home cookbook and recipe was submitted by the Taste of Home Test Kitchen. I have adjusted the bake time to accommodate for cupcakes.
Yellow Layer Cake
2/3 cups softened butter
1 3/4 cups granulated sugar
2 eggs
1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
2 1/2 tsp baking powder
2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1/2 tsp salt
1 1/4 cups milk

In a large bowl cream together butter and sugar, add the eggs and mix until fluffy.  Add the vanilla and mix well.  In a separate bowl sift the flour, baking powder and salt together. Add the flour mixture and milk to the butter/sugar mixture and mix well.  
Grease two "12 muffin" tins or line the cups with cupcake liners.  Fill each cup 3/4 full with batter.  Bake at 350°F for 20-30 minutes or until tests clean with toothpick in centers. Makes 24 cupcakes
Ice with your favorite icing.  I used a cream cheese icing. 1 package softened cream cheese, 4 tablespoons softened butter, 1 tsp vanilla, 1/8 tsp salt, 3 cups confectioner sugar.  Mix all together until creamy.  To color the icing, separate it into portions and add food coloring.

Have a great week!

Hugs,
Sonia


Friday, July 4, 2014

Make some Noise!

Back in 1776, a man wrote his wife a letter and he wrote about Independence Day.

July 3, 1776  Independence day "ought to be commemorated, as the Day of Deliverance, by solemn acts of devotion to God Almighty.  It ought to be solemnized with pomp and parade, with shows, games, sports, guns, bells, bonfires and illuminations, from one end of this continent to the other, from this time forward forever."

Who was this man?  The second US President, John Adams.


I trust you will thank God for your freedom. Now get out there and have a good time with your friends and family and make some noise!



Wednesday, June 25, 2014

I love you too...

It has recently been brought to my attention, that often times we say "I love you" to God without even thinking He loved us first.

That hit me right in the heart.  I tell God I love Him every day, as if I'm waiting for Him to love me back.  As if I do my best for Him and say it just right... He will love me too - forgetting that He loved me first.

How can I forget that?

Especially when I look back and see what He has brought me out of and that He loved me so much He reached down into the miry pit I was in and picked me up.

Can you relate to what I mean?

So today, I tried saying "I love you too".  I thought about how much God loves me and said "I love You too".

Try it.

You can't help but get a little choked up and smile.

From now on I'm going to try my best to always remember He loved me first.

1 John 4:9-11 In this the love of God has made manifest among us, that God send his only Son into the world, so that we might live through him.  In this is love, not that we have loved God but that he loved us and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins.  Beloved, if God so loved us, we also ought to love one another.


*****************************************************

Thought I'd share some pics I took this evening after I got home from church.

A beautiful sunset set the western sky ablaze this evening.



And I have some new flowers and plants that are showing off their beauty.



That's it for now.

Have a great rest of the week!  :)
Hugs,
Sonia

Friday, June 13, 2014

Quilts, Quilts and more Quilts...

Hi, it's been quite a while, by my thoughts, since I last wrote.   I've been going through some things that have had an effect on me physically and emotionally.  I have lost the motivation and energy I normally have, thus I haven't done much in regard to quilting, writing, crocheting... you know the things I like to do.  I have a doctor's appointment on the 26th and hopefully the doctor will be able to help me out.

I still have enough motivation and energy to spend time with the Lord each day in bible study and prayer.  I tend to get a little low about not feeling well, but my time in prayer and study has helped me not to cave and let the whole thing get me down.

Though I have lost motivation, etc... I still enjoy a good quilt show.  Last weekend, Kathy, Judy, Susan, and I went to the Tulsa Quilt show.  We had a good time meeting new people and seeing all the items the vendors had for quilting.

I found a way upstairs and took these two overhead shots.










 As you can see, there were a lot of quilts, vendors, and people.



I took a bunch of pictures but will only show the different types of quilts instead of all the quilts I took pictures of.

There were Modern quilts                                                       There were Traditional quilts


                                                       

 There were Patriotic quilts                                                             There were Artistic quilts


 There were Big Block quilts






                  
                         
                                                  and their were Wooden quilts
                 









It was beautiful day and on the way back to Arkansas, I captured this picture of our beautiful flag.

I plan to visit a new quilt shop in Magazine, AR tomorrow morning.  I didn't know it was there until a friend told me about this week.

I hope all is going well with you and yours and wish you a beautiful weekend.

Hugs,
Sonia


P.S.  the 10 p.m. news is on and just mentioned the full moon on Friday 13th.  Evidently this is a rare occurrence.  So I went outside and captured this picture just a few minutes ago.


Saturday, May 31, 2014

English Paper Piecing...

Often times I have time left on my lunch break, after I eat.   If I'm not reading or visiting antique/flea markets, I will be working on a crocheted or hand sewn project.

I recently bought a small English Paper Piecing kit to give it a try.  I must admit I didn't expect to like the process but wanted to try it, just to say I did.

Surprise...Surprise!  I truly like to English Paper Piece.  It is a great way to work on a project when you are limited in space or time.

Here's how it's done.  A template is used to create the shapes. Feeling for the edge of the template as you stitch allows you to keep your stitches even.  You do not stitch through the template in this method, making the template reusable.


Supplies: Fabric Squares (2" in this case) and templates (hexagon here. can use other shapes)

The templates are made of heavy stock paper, cardboard, plastic, Mylar, or acrylic.

I'm using heavy stock paper templates in this project.


Place template on wrong side of fabric, can pin in place to keep it secure.











Fold fabric down over edge of template firmly on two sides, creating a sharp corner in the fabric and tack down.  Move to next two sides and repeat.












I figured out, while I was working on this to tie square knots at each corner instead of tacking, then clipping each time.  It made the process go faster.

 Square knot: right end over left and through, then left end over right and through.







Stitch a center block and six outer blocks.  Use a whip stitch to stitch the outer blocks to the center block using the top edge of the template as a guide to stitch.

Once the outer blocks are stitched to center block, trim the fabric overlap on the center block to 1/4" and remove template.

Can reuse the template later.




Once the center template is out, you can then fold the piece to stitch the sides of the outside pieces together.









Once you have the sides of the outer pieces sewn together, trim the overlapped fabric to 1/4" and remove the templates.

If using paper pieces you can press before you remove templates.  Otherwise, press after templates are removed.



Here are some samples of finished blocks.  The smaller one is made using 1" blocks of fabric and smaller template.

I think these will look nice on a background with appliqued stems and leaves, creating a bouquet of flowers.

So there you have it.

If you would like a easy small hand sewing project, try out English Paper Piecing.

There are several ways to do it and you can find all kind of videos for it on YouTube.  I prefer this method the best.

Hugs,
Sonia

Sunday, May 25, 2014

Happy Memorial Day!

Hello, I just want to take a moment to remember all my fellow brothers and sisters who have served or are now serving for our freedom.

THANK YOU!

Here is a wreath I made in honor of their service.


I added some new flowers to the decorations I normally have in indoors.  


Elvis watched as I put them together.    


Memorial Day brings back fond memories of the time I served with the 188th TFG in Fort Smith, AR; over 20 years ago.



 Please take a moment this Memorial Day to remember those who have served and are still serving today for our freedom.

God bless and Happy Memorial Day!

Hugs,
Sonia

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Flooding Memories...

What a busy past several days....

The month of May is probably one of the busiest months of the year for me and my family.

My youngest, Audre, graduated High School this past weekend.
I look back over the years and wow, how the memories flood my mind.






CONGRATULATIONS AUDRE!


Thursday, May 15, 2014