Wednesday, April 7, 2021

I Like Thursday #155

 Wow 155 I Like Thursday posts.  What is I Like Thursday?  I Like Thursday was started by LeeAnna at Not Afraid of Color.  The mission was to find things that we likes, loved, and/or were positive throughout the week to share with others and put a little kindness back into the universe.  

I like the warmer temperatures around my neck of the woods. To celebrate I had to have this hanging basket which I spied at work.

I mean who doesn't love purple and yellow together?


I just love pansy faces.  When I was small I always thought they were velvety.  

The yellow is Nemesia or what they call Lion's Face.  I love the multi-hued yellows!

Since it was nice outside, Bobbin and I walked to check on the flower beds.  We still have loads of Daffodils, and more tulips, but none have bloomed as of yet.  I did spy a Snowflake thought.

It is a giant version of a snowdrop and I adore the little green dots on the points of all the petals.  

The orchard never did get sprayed with dormant spray.  Sigh.  I needed a 24 hour period that the temperatures stayed above 40 and there was little to no wind.  

I think soon there will be apple blossoms.  

And some cherries I hope.  I untangled my planters with my strawberries and pulled them out into the sun.  

Not a lot going on sewing wise.  I did make a few bookshelves and started organizing my stash better.  I ended up lugging 2 crates full of fabric upstairs and put it away.  I also realized that I have a lot more that needs to be folded and organized. 

I only read a couple of books this past week.  

Still Life by Louise Penny it is the first installment of the Inspector Gamache' series.  

The 2nd book was The Anatomist's Wife.  Lady Darby is in hiding in the Scottish Highlands at her sister's home after the death of her husband.  During a house party one the guests is murdered.   Kiera wants to put her past aside, but when one of the house guests is murdered, her brother-in-law asks her to utilize her knowledge of human anatomy to aid the insufferable Sebastian Gage—a fellow guest with some experience as an inquiry agent. While Gage is clearly more competent than she first assumed, Kiera isn’t about to let her guard down as accusations and rumors swirl.

Now head over to LeeAnna's and check out the other I like Thursday posts.  

Thursday, April 1, 2021

I Like Thursday #154

 Whew a wee bit late today.  Welcome to my 154th I Like Thursday post.  Thank you LeeAnna for encouraging us to find things that we like, love during the week to share with others to throw kindness, and uplift others.

I have been going into work at midnight and getting off by 8:30 am.  The trouble is, while most people are sleeping, I am working, and there are times I need to sleep during the day.  I always think of this poem by Robert Louis Stevenson:

Bed in Summer

In winter I get up at night
And dress by yellow candle-light.
In summer, quite the other way,
I have to go to bed by day.

I have to go to bed and see
The birds still hopping on the tree,
Or hear the grown-up people's feet
Still going past me in the street.

And does it not seem hard to you,
When all the sky is clear and blue,
And I should like so much to play,
To have to go to bed by day?

The upside to the crazy schedule is that I can enjoy the beautiful weather we have had.  The beautiful weather translates to lovely growing things. 

Daffodils raising their sunny head and exploding throughout the flower beds!  (Those flower beds really need to be cleaned up!)

The promise of tulips.  
Confession time....after Jeff and the great aunt died, I fell off the rails in many ways.  I have been really working hard at cleaning up my house, choosing what to keep, what to donate(this is easy).  On top of that I have accumulated enough fabric to open up my own fabric store, either through purchases or what others have given me.  I am very slowly getting it folded, or cut up and organized.  
One such task is a garbage bag full of reproduction feedsack, 20's, 30's fabrics.  Many pieces had chunks taken out of them, looking at them I decided what I would make, and started cutting them into 2 1/2 inch by 20 inch strips.  I ended up with a pile of  2 1/2 inch strips which were shorter, some 2 inch strips, 1 1/2 inch strips and anything smaller was thrown into a string bin.  I swear that the bag is bottomless.  I will take out 4 or 5 pieces, starch and iron and place by my cutting table.  When I go to cut something while sewing I will cut up some of those pieces too.  The shoebox below is just the 2 1/2 inch by 20 inch strips.  It is running over already and I have much more to cut!

Near my cutting table I also have an apple box full of scraps from previous projects.  Those too are getting trimmed into a scrap system.  I think just cleaning up my scraps could be a full time job for years.  Sigh!😞

I have managed a wee bit of sewing.  

Little block 3.

These blocks are so fun to make and I enjoy choosing the fabrics.  

Last week I had 2 days off in a row.  Thursday was my "cheat day" from my normal healthy eating.  Bobbin and I ordered and picked up deep dish pizza.

Since I was off for 2 days in a row, and the weather was beautiful the grandsons wanted to have a fire.  Then the rain started.  Initially it was a light drizzle, but we stayed, and roasted marshmallows, and made s'mores, chatted, laughed and told stories--the kids planned it since it was my cheat day and they thought I needed a treat.  Then the rain started a wee bit heavier, yet we stayed.  Finally it was time to call it a night and we found this guy nearby us.  

There are random holes throughout the property.  Jeff used to tell me they were crawdad holes.  I would look at him and think, "Seriously there is no water for hundreds of feet."  But when it rains hard here they are.  Since our water table is so high I think they live just a foot or two below ground and when it rains hard they emerge. 

Once inside a doozy of a thunderstorm came through, dumping a lot of rain in a short time.

Here you can see just how much precipitation fell.  

Trying to keep up my healthy eating regime I have learned to change up recipes to make them healthier, but also another change is to make smaller portions.  I love my small ramekins that I purchased recently.  I could make up 4 from my recipe.  Perfect portion for a meal, and the rest could be put in the fridge for the next day or even frozen.

I am grateful that while I am sewing, cutting or working out many times I can listen to a book while doing those tasks, so at least I get some entertainment or things to make the think.

My book reads for the week.  

I had ready Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen a few years ago. I am surprised at how much literature is out there which Jane Austen plays a role, such as The Jane Austen Society, The Jane Austen Book Club, Pride, Prejudice, and Poison just to name a few.  A whole genre' of its own.  

I am sure most of us know the story of Emma who is always matchmaking.  

The next book I read was The Lady Vanished by Gretta Mulrooney.  It is the first book in the Tyrone Swift series.  Tyrone is a retire police officer that has opened his own detective agency.  He inherited a house from an aunt, and sublets part to an elderly gentleman.  Tyrone is hired to locate Florence Davenport's step mother that has gone missing. 

Many intriguing characters and some main characters that you thoroughly enjoy.

Finally my third book I read this past week was The Midnight Library by Matt Haig.  I will admit that initially I didn't like the character Nora Seed.  While in life there are circumstances that can be a wee bit out of our control, many are controlled by our choices.  Unfortunately Nora has had more than her share, and the final straw is the death of her cat Voltaire, that she thinks has been hit and killed by a car.  At that time Nora chooses to take her own life.  But instead of death she ends up in the Midnight Library with the librarian from her youth.  I like this write up:

Somewhere out beyond the edge of the universe there is a library that contains an infinite number of books, each one the story of another reality. One tells the story of your life as it is, along with another book for the other life you could have lived if you had made a different choice at any point in your life. While we all wonder how our lives might have been, what if you had the chance to go to the library and see for yourself? Would any of these other lives truly be better?

While there are a plethora of regrets through our life, if we chose differently would it really make our life better?  

Finally I want to apologize, with my schedule, trying to eat healthy, and exercise I don't always get a chance to read and comment on everyone's blog weekly.  In fact many times my reading is spread out through several days, and sometimes I read, but do not comment, or I play catch up reading a couple of posts from a blogger at a time and commenting.  I do miss having the time to read blog hops.  :(

I used to laugh and say those that stay fit, at least many that I know, usually spend more time at the gym than they do at anything else during their free time.  While I do not go to the gym (yet) I will admit that yes; trying to get at least 10,000 steps a day in, do the joint workouts and other strengthening exercises in during my day takes out a huge chunk, almost 2 hours.  

Now head over to LeeAnna's at Not Afraid of Color and check out the other I Like Thursday posts. 

Wednesday, March 24, 2021

I Like Thursday #153

 Welcome to my 153rd I Like Thursday post.  I Like Thursday is a group of bloggers that share things they have discovered during the week that they like or love and bring kindness, and positivity to the universe.  Thank you LeeAnna at Not Afraid of Color for encouraging even when times are really tough.

Saturday was the first day of spring, and the weather has been nice.  I have been spending more time outside than in, once I am done with work.

 I have some flowers poking up.  The trees are budding, and the grass is getting green already. Even some of the chickens want to take walks.  

There seems to always be one that won't stay in the yard.  Sigh.

Easter is coming soon and Bobbin lucked out, no bunny costume, but bunny ears.  

She was really not a happy girl with me.  

Speaking of the heat she is crawled under the old dresser I use as a TV stand, laying on the heat vent.

Another sure sign of new peeps. 

There were supposed to be 30 but one didn't make the trip from the hatchery.  Didn't help that the postal service which around here used to be very good seems to have slipped, even paying for next day service.  My chicks which were hatched on Monday and shipped wandered around and finally landed at the local Family, Farm and Home store.  I was lucky they saw that they belonged to me and called me.  They very well could have just added them to their stock to sell.  

The books I read this past week were A Tine to Live, a Tine to Die by Edith Maxwell.  

Cameron Flaherty has taken over her family farm and is attempting to get an organic certification.  Cam fires the long time family farm hand right before the CSA (Community-Supported Agriculture) pick up and that evening he is found dead in her hoop house.  

Pork Pie Pandemonium by Steve Higgs.  Albert Smith is a retired Detective Superintendent, recently widowed decides to go on a culinary excursion of Great Britain.   Albert's travels with his “assistance dog,” Rex Harrison. The German Shepherd is “the only dog in the history of the Metropolitan police to have been fired for having a bad attitude,” first stop is how to make pork pies.  When a thumb is discovered in the makings during cooking class, Albert's interest is piqued' especially after the pie shop's owner's daughter asks Albert to help solve where the thumb came from so that the family business may be opened once again.

The Fire Carrier is the last installment of the Mitch Bushyhead series by Jean Hager.  It is winter and there is a prisoner on the loose, and the local medical clinic's doctor hiding an abused wife. 

Then Jesse Hatch's husband is found dead in the woods there are a lot of strings to unravel to determine who killed him.  The abused wife, her teenage sons, or someone else?

Now head over to LeeAnna's at Not Afraid of Color to check out the other I Like Thursday posts. 


Wednesday, March 17, 2021

I Like Thursday #152

 Welcome to my 152nd I Like Thursday Post.  Thank you to LeeAnna of Not Afraid of Color for encouraging us to find and share things we like for the week.  

I love the different doggie outfits I see.  

How about a bunny outfit?  Or maybe just a headband of bunny ears?

The weather has been much warmer, but still not warm enough for Bobbin. 
This is my laundry room it is barely 6 foot wide.  There is a huge heat vent and when I am in the laundry room Bobbin parks herself as close as she can get to it.  The only thing that keeps her from getting closer is my drying racks.

I am always amazed at how fast merchandise for holidays come out at the store.  There were these two signs which I thought were amusing.

I tried a new recipe called melting sweet potatoes.  You cut the potatoes into 1 inch rounds and

Then bake at a high temperature.  This recipe called for maple syrup and it was very yummy.

I did a little sewing this past week.  

I finished up the paper piecing block "Hope".

I also did another of the 3 inch blocks.

My company has been encouraging wellness programs.  One of them is called Hinge, which works on helping strengthen joints that may be causing you problems.  Hips, knees, back-upper or lower, shoulders.  Many years ago I injured both of my shoulders at work.  I tore my rotator cuff on both sides, even after many months of rehab, cortisone shots I never was back to full motion.  I have been having some pain lately so I hope this program helps.  Just for signing up they sent me a yoga mat, tablet, power bands, electronic sensors to ensure that I am doing my exercises correctly, a plan, and weekly call with a coach.  I like that they are working on prevention.  

I read a few books this week.

Plunder another installment of the Faye Longchamp Mysteries.  After an explosion on an oil rig in the Gulf of Mexico, Faye, and Joe are hired to do an assessment of an area which they fear will end up being destroyed by the oil. 

A Thread of Madness by Blythe Baker.  The Dickinson sisters own a dress shop in 1800's England.  When one of the sisters witnesses a man killed by a shadow, it is determined that they must find the killer to protect their good name. 

The Weight of Night by Christine Carbo.  This is the 3rd installment of the series which is set in Glacier National Park.  Multiple fires are raging, and one of the hot shots ends up digging up a body.  Add to it a missing teen boy and Monty a Park police and Gretchen a forensic's expert realize there is a pattern.  Will they find the missing boy in 5 days?

The Hanging Tree by Irina Shapiro.  A Writer's retreat at an ancient manor house is the setting and Nicole over hears an ancient legend about Alys Bailey who was hung as a witch in the 1640's.  Nicole feels that there is a story and as she researches, Alys's story unfolds.  

Ghostland is the 3rd installment of the Mitch Bushyhead series by Jean Hager.  While walking through the woods on of the local spinsters trips over the body of a child.  Mitch comes in the investigate the murder of the child from the local Indian School.  

Now head over to LeeAnna's to check out the other I Like Thursday posts. 

Thursday, March 11, 2021

I Like Thursday #151

 Welcome to my 151st I Like Thursday post.  I don't know about many of you, but doesn't the darkness seem to be lifting, even with the pandemic going on?  Days seem to be much easier even with all the other stuff going on.  The daylight hours are longer, the temperatures are getting warmer things just seem better somehow.  Perhaps that is why I have been struggling to remember to create a post for I Like Thursday.  *big smiles*

I picked up a paper piecing project from last year.  I had joined the Quiet Play 2020 group.  Every month you receive 3 or 4 paper pieced patterns.  I kind of stalled out after the initial introduction which was an asterisk.

The past week I finished the rainbow.

I have been working on the next piece which has 9 sections.  Perhaps I will finish it by next week.  

I had thought I would work on finishing up lots of projects that I have sitting around, and I have been picking up stuff ans working on it, but I was enticed by a project called Little Blocks 365.  Every week you receive 7 three inch paper pieced blocks.  The program began in January. I will admit it took me until mid February to decide a fabric scheme.  I want to do a red and white quilt, and I wanted it to be reproduction fabrics. 

After looking at some of the patterns I also added in gray.  So far this is just block one.  😊

I love working with wool, and have been prepping my next "Taking Home the Tree" blockwhich is quite extensive.  I am ready to start to fuse it all now, but there are almost 60 + parts. I wanted something to sew while sitting in the evening and winding down.  

I saw these wooly mug rugs.  The patterns are free from Shabby Fabrics.

You can buy the kits or just use or buy your own wool.  I have some wool, but I went wool shopping (doesn't that remind you  of wool gathering? LOL   Well technically it is wool gathering, in a way), and found the fun green plaid. 

I love sewing with this lana wool by aurifil.  I would never have thought that wool thread would be so easy to use.

I have been sticking to my eating plan, and finding healthy sometimes is very difficult.  On top of finding food, some days I have trouble eating enough to get to my necessary calorie count. I discovered these recently.

The thins are about the size of a half dollar, and the serving size is 21 thins for about 130 calories.  

My books for the week are Findings, Floodgates, and Strangers all by Mary Anna Evans.  These are the 4th, 5th, and 6th books in the Faye Longchamps archaeology series.  

The book Findings, Faye is working for a friend, cataloging artifacts in his collection for a museum he is going to open.  A break in, his murder, and a mess are left. While Faye is helping to clean up after the break in, she discovers nothing is missing, but her field notes.  Is the murder related to a fabulous emerald that Faye discovered while surveying her property Joyeuse?

Floodgates takes place after Hurricane Katrina.  The body of a missing archaeologist is discovered in a condemned house, what is interesting it appears that the body has been weighted down with a pile of heavy objects.  Was Shelley killed during the hurricane or in a much more sinister way afterward, and why?

Strangers--A very pregnant Faye, and her husband Joe are running a dig in St. Augustine on the property of a 100 year old mansion.  A woman disappears, her abusive boyfriend find murdered in a nearby canal, a 400 year old journal, and a gilded age murder all combine together to form a puzzle.  Or do they.

What I like about this series is Faye is a strong woman, she meets Joe and their relationship slowly develops over the books, until they are married and starting their family.  Archaeological sites, local folklore, Native American legends, old journals all work together to weave interesting books.  

Now head over to LeeAnna's at Not Afraid of Color and check out the other I Like Thursday posts.