Archive for July, 2009

I’ve been hunkering down in my sewing room any spare bit of time I get (getting projects done for the fair) so not much blogging …or cleaning for that matter!

I think I had returned to my sewing room by Wednesday last week.  So this was done on Thursday:

fair 2A new cosemetic bag for my purse… because I changed purses and need a matching one.  😉  It is about 5″ long.  A zipper closes the bag across the top and the tab comes across and has a magnetic snap.

Friday I finished 6 coasters that coordinate with the kitchen.  (However, you can’t see the kitchen re-do yet because the kitchen needs cleaned!)

fair 3I’ll only enter 4 but I have 6 in case we have soup when company is over.  🙂

fair 4I liked this quilting design… it echoes the movement of the pinwheel.

Sunday I finished this appliqued and quilted purse/small tote.  It has 6 pockets inside.  I love the batik fabrics and the beads on the clematis!

fair 5

Monday I finished this pillow.  I actually had done 2 of the 4 blocks last year so just had to finish the other 2 and put it all together.  These are 6″ New York Beauty blocks, paper pieced on freezer paper.  The 2 I just did, I used the new method of paper piecing without stitching on the paper.

fair 6

Tuesday I finished the embroidery on this denim jacket.  I love the little pink tassels.  They are loose like fringe!  🙂

fair 7The front has a little bouquet.

fair 8Sorry for the poor picture… it is dark so hard to get the color/flash right on my camera.  And I’m tired.  🙂   But I wanted to show you the back styling.  That is why I chose this feminine design.

fair 9Up close of the back of denim jacket.

I’ve also volunteered for 3 mornings at the 4-H office to get paperwork done for them before the fair next week.

JP is working on a lapbook for his advanced computer project and taking good care of his pigs for the swine show.  Now if I could only find the big bottle of baby shampoo I know I saw within the last year.  I thought… Oh good, we don’t have to buy any for JP’s pigs this year.  However…. we can’t find it now!

I’m tired of my allergies and must head to bed soon…..

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July Storm

Thunderstorms here tonight.

Before we got the rain & thunder, I took this pictures.  The storm is still north of us at this point.

storm 1

storm 3

storm 4

These layers of clouds were amazing.  Hence, all the pictures.  🙂

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Camp Coachman 2009

Last week my siblings & I gathered at our parents.   We were only missing 2 sons-in-law (Phil & Jeff) and 2 grandkids (K & Elliott).  It was fun but I stayed up too late for 2 nights in a row so I must not do that next time!!  :p


Part of this (a mere mention but they didn’t want a “party”) was for Mom & Dad’s 60th wedding anniversary.   So really all this hoop-la is their fault.  😉

original 6 in yardThis time we (kids) are in birth order: Bruce, Nancy, Dad, Mom, Margaret, & me.

A few cousins renamed it (since we don’t really “camp”) Ronk-A-Palooza and decorated the driveway accordingly.  (Other suggestions included Ronk Stock and Ronk-A-Thon.)   I think the 20-something grandkids had more fun with the sidewalk chalk than the intended great-grands.  🙂

Original 6 - palooza(L-R: Me, Nancy, Mom, Dad, Margaret, and Bruce)

8 of the 10 grandkids:

cousins crouched

(I think this proves that Justin wasn’t too happy that JP was passing him in height.  J/K)

3 cousinsThree of my parents’ great-grandsons .   Quite handsome and fun!

cousins in driveway standingThe cousins  (L-R: JP, Kendra, Ben, David, Evie, Amie, Brian, & Justin)

Lucy & meMe with Lucy – she didn’t mind us strange Aunts at all.  🙂 I was quite impressed with her 18 month old rendition of “‘winkle, ‘winkle Little Star”!  She sang the whole song while getting a clean diaper one evening.

Marg & JoyceMy sister Margaret & me.

A cousin of ours was visiting from California (her sister lives in town) so they came for supper one night.   Marsha had lots of old pictures and family stories.  It was fun to see them and I need her email address if anyone here has it!

old pixCousin Marsha, Dad, Me, Margaret with Mom in the kitchen.

cousinsJoyce, Nancy, Marsha, Judi, Margaret

corn roastRoasting corn Saturday night.   They dug a pit along the side of the driveway.  JP said it was really good so wants to try this at home.  🙂

wipesI took my serger & rotary cutting equipment to make baby wipes for Sarah.  I got 68 out of the 2 yds of fabric she bought.   She will have very clean children!

Sarah & A

Sarah reading to A and a little girl in the oven.

J & OAs we waited to get a picture of the great-grands with Mom & Dad, JP took this picture of O & J.  Aren’t they cute?  🙂  They belong to Justin & Leslie.

Sarah worked & worked to get a good picture of all these littles.  You can imagine I’m sure!  It didn’t help we all needed supper, too.

gr grands6 great-grands with one more on the way so far!  Delightful!!

with mom & dadThanks for a great visit Mom & Dad and thanks to Bruce & Sue for their hotel use!

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A Visit With My Parents

A few glimpses of my parents —

mom & dad mid morning snack

Mid-morning snack at the kitchen nook

out for lunch

Heading to the WMS Luncheon at Conference

father & sonThought this was cute – Father & Son!  🙂

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A Strong Puppy

So this month marked 7 months for Nina.  We haven’t weighed her since May but in keeping the pattern she’d be in the 70 pound range now.

Would you like to come & hold her while I read the scale?  🙂

Nina loves to play frisbee with the men.  But she plays hard and then finally quits and just sits down.  Or she gets wild and goes for a long run!

The other night she took off in the bean field to the east of the house.  Running and jumping through the soybeans.  But.. that was too far heading to the highway so they men were calling her back.

She returned nearer the bins but was now in the mood of “you can’t get me”.  😛   I was near the kitchen windows watching some of this.   Phil called for me to call for Nina.  (She does obey better for me.)

I went to the deck and called and she came a runnin’ at full force and flew up the deck!!   It is 2 steps and at that speed she just clears the steps.  I actually grabbed her leash on the way by in a lerch of my own and she was stopped on the deck.

She REALLY needed a rest so I took her to her pool and then hooked her up in the area with the cable.  The men went farther away in the yard to play people frisbee.  (JP got good playing frisbee at Worldview Academy and he got a super quality frisbee they don’t use with Nina.)

I returned inside as my supper was ready.

About that quick, I heard them yell again.   She had decided she didn’t need a rest and took off after the frisbee!  I thought she broke the stake out of the ground (metal rod that Phil has rewelded already).

But no… her collar was laying hooked to the cable.   She snapped the plastic closure off the collar!!  Never holds her back or makes her yelp.   *sigh*

But now… we have a collarless dog!  Thankfully she ran to JP and he had ahold of her.

Phil & I hunted in the basement and found an old collar from another dog.  It is wider than we’ve used, has a big metal buckle, but barely goes around.   But I got it on the last hole so she was good to go.

I brought her in the house.   A bit later, I saw she had been sitting at the back door watching them play so I went to get my camera.   Instead she turned and headed up to see me.

July 2“Can I go out now?”

The next day, JP & I returned the broken collar with the lifetime guarantee to the Dog Center where we took classes.  I got another one but this one only has metal rings.   🙂   Gotta love the collar & leash company and their lifetime guarantees.   We’ve now gone through 3 leashes (she chewed 2, now she doesn’t chew so much) and now are on our 2nd collar.   (The collar cost $10 the first time.  Cheaper than Farm & Cheap! 🙂 )

This is from a few weeks ago.   Her favorite way to relax and cool off.

July 1

We aren’t too sure how she’ll do for 4 days without her 2 favorite people.   She is staying home with Dad.   They will have good bonding time.

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Roadtrip to the Roadshow

Saturday was our big day to visit Antiques Roadshow. Sue (MIL) & I left at 9 a.m. and headed north.  Way north.  For 2 1/2 hrs.   About 11:30 we arrived (for our 1:00 ticket time)  and found a good place to park in the first section near the building.


The sign inside said they were admitting those with ticket times up through 12:00.  I had already seen the large ARS banner so said I’d take her picture there.  We didn’t want to unpack the treasures for the picture so we held our tickets.


Just as we finished pictures, a volunteer said they were now admitting those with 1:00 tickets so we hurried to the door.


We entered a  HUGE room with chairs & ARS blue tape marking off the cue lines.  We headed near the front (and were thankful we didn’t have to snake through this whole room) and were put in a row for 1:00 ticket holders.

Meanwhile, 12:00 ticket holders continued to the current line of zig-zagging through the rows. We were pleased as punch to be about #6 & 7 in the 1:00 group.  🙂


We were given a 15 min warning that we’d be moving soon.   Sure enough at 12:30, we were taken about 3 rows up and joined with the rest of the line filing back & forth, inching towards the front.



As we had stood there, I had thought that our goal at this point was not just the front of this room but access to the next room over.


As we got within 2 rows of the front, we saw 6 tables with Antique Roadshow workers.

DSCF4085 (blurry because I did this without a flash)

We concluded this is the preliminary review area.   Once we got that far (about 1:35), we were given tickets for each category of items we had.  Each ticket holder could have 2 items appraised.  Sue’s categories were Tribal Art and Dolls.  I had Clocks & Watches and Toys & Games.

As we entered the next room, she said, “I think this is where we part ways.”  And we did as each of us had a volunteer show us to our first area.

I was taken to Clocks first as I had a collection of 6 family pocketwatches.   I had been warned that because I had a collection and not just 1 pocketwatch, that the appraiser could just make me choose 1 to appraise.  We had already had that discussion so were fine with the rule.

The first set of lines in this room was in your category.  It was outside of a large circle in the center of the room created by blue curtains.   There were openings in the circle every so often.   The lines then radiated away from the circle.

The Clock line wasn’t too bad compared to the line next to me.  I guessed maybe I was #5 here.  A few at a time were taken to inside the curtained circle.

Soon it was my turn as they separated watches from clocks at this time.  Three of us ticket holders had our tickets punched and were taken to a short line in front of a table.  The table was for the appraisal and the appraisers had their backs to the curtain.

So all around the outer edge of this inner circle were tables of appraisers.  Our booklet said 20 categories.  My 1 category of Clocks & Watches had 4 appraisers working.   We were told to expect each appraisal to take 2 minutes.

I would say that when it was my turn, he went over my 6 pocketwatches in 2 minutes total.  I hurriedly took notes on each one, listened, and tried to make eye contact and keep him going.   The pocketwatches are all “working” people watches.  After the 3rd mention, I said that we (Bob’s family & Sue’s family) are farm families so that would make perfect sense.   They were all gold-plated and some dated to the 1800’s.   He had names for the makers and 3 of them were ladies watches.   Repeating that they were only gold-plated, he said that “as a collection, today they would bring about $100.”

I thanked him and worked my way back out of the curtained circle.

At this point I asked where the Toys & Games category was and was directed to the far side of the circle.   Once again on the outer side of the curtains, I worked my way past a lot of people in lines with their goods.   On my way, I found Sue waiting in her Doll line.  It was next to my Toy line but my line was very, very long and she was near the front of her line.

I waited.  I conversed with those around me.  I sat on the cement floor.  I took bites from my protein bar and kept it hidden.   I turned my phone back on.   I texted Phil.  I texted K.   I was bored.  :\

And then the line moved a bit.  And a while later, we moved again.  Soon I could see Sue!  I had caught up to her!   All this while we thought our line was moving slowly, her line wasn’t even moving!  Argh!!  She was getting cranky.

Soon they called for anyone with a Toy ticket.   I was #6 in this train of people being taken to the inner circle.   However, the ticket puncher turned his back before punching the tickets of me and the man in front of me.   I continued following.

While in this shorter line we were constantly told to stay off this bit of carpeted area that was so near our positions.   It was a “set”.  So I looked around and saw they had 2 TV taping sets in the center of this inner curtained circle.   There was no filming going on at this point.   But I could look around and see I was near a small item set and across the area was a set for taping larger items.

A volunteer came by and asked if I had my ticket.  Yes.  Was it punched?  NO!  😦  They just took us in and didn’t punch my ticket.  As she was ready to take me back out of this prized area, an ARS worker (complete with denim shirt, headset, and clipboard) pointed to the metal bank I cradled in my hands and said, “I want to see that appraised.”


The volunteer said, “You’re lucky, I was just ready to send you out.”  😦

And just like that, the line was opened and it was MY TURN at the table once again!  The ARS worker was there and repeated he wanted to know along with me.   The appraiser gave background on the bank I had placed on the table.   Dates, name, the figure was of the evil mayor, this one is an orgininal, not cast from others.   However, the hand of the mayor was broken at the wrist.   Obviously.   And that matter knocked the value.  To the basement.

“Today this would bring about $100.”  (nearly the exact same words that I heard from the watch guy.)

But I was so close to being wanted!!  😉

I found my way out of the inner circle near where Sue was STILL waiting in line.  However, while inside I was near the Doll table and I saw they were back to working.  (We heard they took a 2 hour lunch break and they did some filming so we aren’t sure if it was a little of both or what that stopped her line.)

She wanted to give up & go home but I said she was so close!  I wandered and let her continue in line.

I “won” a travel mug (not insulated) from Liberty Mutual a sponsor of ARS.   Lame.  I wanted a Tshirt.  :p

I picked up the business cards of my 2 appraisers for Sue to have.  Then I sat.  I was at the end of the Liberty Mutual table.   I chatted with a lady also resting who then ended up whining her way to a Tshirt from a LM volunteer who was carrying some shirts.   hmpf!

After this lady & her husband left, this LM volunteer again walked by with shirts flung over his shoulder.   I glanced at him and just put my hand out for a handout silently.

He agreed… I saw him give one to the other lady, I should have one too.  🙂

About 15 mins later, Sue arrived.  She had finished!  She wanted a shirt too but only got a travel mug.  I said I got a shirt!  🙂


We headed out to the car.   As we put our things in the backseat, I showed her the shirt and she was thrilled with it and glad to have it.   🙂

It was 4:08.  Time to head home!

Traffic wasn’t bad at all and soon we were on smaller roads heading south again.  Home just after 6 p.m.

A long day of standing in lines and we didn’t get on TV, but she had fun and we learned a lot!

ETA: Sorry, I forgot to tell you about Sue’s items.  Her Tribal Arts item was a pottery bowl made by some Native American tribe.  (I’m working to be PC here!)  The appraiser told her the tribe (or the likely tribes) that did this work.  They were a poorer tribe and made these pots for the tourists.   It is about 8″ in diameter or so.   I think the value was around $250. 

Next was an old doll.  (The reason she stood in the doll category line for 2 hours.)  She was quite disappointed with the appraiser here.  For one thing, she noticed he had to look up every item in the Dolls Collectible book.   Then he told her the doll was a reproduction.  😦  She is pretty sure it is real for several reasons so that was sad to her.   So no value there. 

Meanwhile… the ARS tshirt… PRICELESS!  😉

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Please Fix My Windshield

On our way to get JP – 2 weeks ago! – a rock hit and chipped/cracked/broke our windshield.  Nothing blinding but I pay for insurance so I want it fixed.

Place #1 never called me in the 90 mins that my insurance company quoted.  I called ins co back.  Another 90 min wait.   Finally on another day, the next week, I got the number and called #1 myself.

I was given an appointment for Monday, July 6 at 11:30.  I waited.  Until 3:00 and called Place #1.   This person identified himself as the owner and was sorry but the tech was out and he didn’t know why someone would have scheduled me for that day.

I asked when was the soonest I could have the job done.   He said Friday, July 10 at 10:30 a.m.   I questioned the owner… someone would really come?  Yes, he promised.


I stayed home from Galena today.    Partly because I have stuff to do and partly I needed to be here when they came.

By 11:00 I decided I had been forgotten again.  I decided to call Place #1 and chew them out give them a chance to defend themselves.  He PROMISED!!  :tears:  I called.  Busy signal.  Continually for the next 20 minutes.  THAT I found hard to understand.

I ran to town for some errands and called again at 12:15.  Busy.

I looked in the yellow pages to see if Place #1 had an 800 number I could try.  No, but a cell phone number so I called that.  I got his voice mail (and he also coaches girls basketball if that matters – not!) and left my message that I was not happy that no one came to fix my windshield and that his business phone is constantly busy.

At that I called my insurance company again and asked for referral #2.   Ins co said the place would call me within 90 mins to set up an appointment.  I said it never happened before but we’d see.

No call.  Two hours later, I called the ins co and asked for the number so I could call them myself!  hmpf!

I called Place #2 and got a recording:

We are closed today to prepare for Customer Appreciation Day.  We’ll be happy to return your call on Monday.


NO! I want them in my driveway on Monday!

So now I started looking in the phone book.  Another place in that town does glass… but after I called… not windshields.


So I decided to try another town.  I called 5 more glass places until finally settling on the chain brand of auto glass and got the clearing center in Columbus.

So I have an appointment for this Monday between 8 and noon.  They are SURE someone will come even tho I told them my story.

I called the insurance company back to let them know I had another company.    “I need to start a new claim for you.”   Grr….

So another question session and a different claim number for the auto glass company.  I called them back and now “all the operators are busy helping other customers” so I waited.  A few minutes but you know at this point it felt like forever.

So the person looked up my file and added the new claim number.    All of this took 45 mins of constantly being on the phone.

I went to do my TTapp workout at that point hoping to burn off my mood!

In about 1/2 an hour, the phone rang.   It was someone… I thought he said from my insurance company… and he had the stupidity nerve  to ask how I was today! LOL!  I said I was crabby.

He had to ask about the appointment and the claim number and a few other Qs.  It sounds like he is the middleman between my insurance company and the national auto glass chain.

I also called Place #1 at the cell phone number and left another message that he could forget about coming here since I had found another place that would like to do the job!

I REALLY hope that on Monday…. SOMEONE  comes to replace my windshield.

In lieu of no fascinating pictures to go along with my story… here are 2 of Nina playing in her pool.  🙂



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If you know Phil’s mom then you know how much she loves antiques and auctions and collecting.  🙂  Her favorite TV show is The Antiques Roadshow on PBS.


Several months ago, she showed me the newspaper article telling that The Show would be in a big city near us this summer.  She had read all the instructions on how to request tickets.

She asked if it was OK to send a request in my name.  It was one request per household.

And she asked, that if she won tickets, would I drive her there as FIL didn’t want to drive.

Sure!  I’m always game to drive.  🙂

And so we waited.  And waited.

I figured when June rolled around, we were out of luck.

However, one day…

I got a box in the mail from Heather!  😀  I was so excited to open it and loved, loved, loved my new Brazillian sandals!  😀  She is so very sweet!  … but I’m getting side-tracked here…

And the evening progressed.

Until I returned to the kitchen for my bedtime hot cocoa.   I sorted through the rest of the mail, previously ignored.  This plain envelope looked like junk mail but it was thick.  And it seemed like a PBS-type call letters in the corner.  Maybe I had won something from a quilting show.  (All that I usually see on PBS.  😉  )


I opened it.

From the back, of course,

An ad for insurance…. a company that SPONSORS THE ANTIQUES ROADSHOW!  Ack!

I turned over the inside contents and was greeted with —


Oh my goodness I knew I had hit the jackpot!  It was 9:50 p.m.   I said to Phil, “Do you think it is too late to call them?”

And he vehemetly said, “Yes!”

So I had to sleep on my news!  Meanwhile doing a snoopy dance in the living room.

The next morning, JP & I went to their house.  I had the envelope in my purse and they didn’t know we were coming over.  I walked into the middle of the living room and said I wanted to show her what I got in the mail yesterday.  I handed MIL the envelope.

She immediately happily wondered when she saw the return address.   I think my smile gave away the rest as she pulled out the tickets.

She read out loud: Congratulations! Here are your Antiques Roadshow tickets!


Meanwhile, FIL entered the living room from and I annouced with my hands in the air –

“I just won favorite daughter-in-law!”

As MIL walked to her chair and sat… silently… reading… every bit of info on the tickets.

She was pleased as punch!  Tho she also thought that maybe, just maybe HER tickets would arrive in her mailbox that day.  I tried to tell her these were HER tickets.

So very soon, we’ll be heading out for our journey.  We have 2 tickets and each ticket holder can take in 2 items for appraisal.   She is choosing items for me to take for her.   Sounds like it has been a big decision process.  😉

I’m taking my camera so I’ll show you the real behind the scenes.  🙂

FYI… my in-laws have one son & one daughter.  I’m the only DIL.  😉

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A Soap Dish

An online guai friend (on guaifenesin protocol)  has a great business and I have to show you!

She recycles vinyl billboards into a myriad of items and look at the very cute soap dishes she has made!

First click HERE.

And HERE is an addition to the soap box so the soap can drain.

She also has soap totes that let your soap dry in the pouch.  How brilliant is that?

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Independence Weekend

We have had an interesting weekend.  Not so full of party & fireworks, but neither was it all work.

On Friday, Phil took a train ride to go apartment shopping with K.  Multiple learning experiences and they ended up with a bad taste for apartment hunting.   They sure weren’t expecting the agent’s high-pressure tactics or to sign on the line after only seeing 3 places!  😦

Our 2 usual choices for fireworks both had them on July 3rd.  JP & I drove to the little town north of us for a bit of fireworks at sunset.  We were on a back road just 1/2 mile away.  Good location and not much traffic when we left.  🙂

4th JP pop-its

JP loves Pop-Its.  Tho he would prefer a bigger bang!

We were both sound asleep before Phil arrived home after midnight.  He was glad he got on the train to come home before the Chicago fireworks started.  He said the streets were CRAZY full of masses of people.  K stayed in.  She got in the mash last year and didn’t need it again.

Saturday was rainy & cool so Phil & I took a few hours to go shopping.   I had cleaned the aquarium in the morning and the pump didn’t like being cleaned so quit working.  I was glad I was able to get a new pump right away.

Today was JP’s weekend to drum.  We went to early service and then took care of our errands.  I got a new cell phone (Samsung Gloss in PINK!) and Phil got his items at Farm & Fleet.

After relaxing with Facebook (JP & me), movies (Phil & JP), and a nap (me!), Phil did chores and I worked in the garden.  JP had a game of frisbee with Nina.

5th of July fire

JP built a good bonfire in the pit by the sweet corn patch.  He & Phil roasted hot dogs and JP had some marshmallows.  The main logs were a bit wet from yesterday’s rain so took quite a while to get going.
5th of July JP & Nina

Wrestling with Nina – not napping!

5th of July chat

More apartment chat after K went to some open houses today with a friend.

10th bdayToday is Molly’s 10th birthday.   She is quite old and wonders why we added Nina to the household & the bedtime barn.  :\

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