Archive for July, 2010

Just the Dogs

and a friend.

The other night it was cute to see Nina laying down outside.  I found it odd she was in the driveway instead of the lawn.

And then I saw she had a soft, furry friend.  Phil said Nina even took the friend to bed (in the barn) with her that night.  😉

So as not to feel left out, here’s Molly —

Molly goes up & down the basement stairs best with me this summer so I guess we are friends.  She usually wants in all. the. time.  If she is outside when I am outside, she makes a quick beeline to the door so as to get in when I go back in.

Read Full Post »

On My Mind

These thoughts started formulating during a radio program I got in on about 15 mins of this afternoon.  Now my version….  😉

I thought back to my junior yr of high school when Dad came up from working on the furnace and asked me to get him a band-aid.  I did but then I drove him to the ER since his “owie” was WAY beyond the band-aid level.  (Phil tries that trick too…. )  At least I could help until Mom got home from work.  (She had to come to the ER as I had a football game (I was in the band!!) that night.

When Dad was out here in the fall helping Phil with the harvest, it frequently was over his birthday.  I’d try to make the best of it and we’d have apple pie for him.

There was really nothing I could do when the doctor gave him the cancer diagnosis… so I turned it over to God.  I couldn’t help.  He could.

This week Dad got a “pass” on his treatment as his white blood count is low.  He had completed his 3 weeks of treatment and a week off last week so this week was to start cycle 2.  Maybe he can do that next week.

Meanwhile, we continue to pray.  But I also thank God for the peace He has given them (and me), for Bruce & Sue being there, and for so many that care for them.

Read Full Post »

Not Mine

Saturday night was Phil’s 30th class reunion.  I’ve never been to my reunion (the second one is planned for next year for my class & I plan to go!) but I’m pretty sure my reunion won’t be like this one.    😉

(It was just a casual affair but at the same time I had to look better than the ones that wanted Phil but didn’t get him.  KWIM?  🙂 I pulled it off, even tho I’m in desperate need of a haircut!!)

The small town class reunion differences hit me after supper while they were chatting around the tables and reminiscing as a group.  Forty percent of them still live in this same town where they all went to school!  They had 47 in their graduating class and 20 of them were at the reunion.  (Along with some spouses, the group on Saturday totaled 40.)

But with the whole small town feel to it, I found it interesting that they were even sharing grade school memories.  Most of them went all the way through school together!  They talked about their grade school principal and the second grade teacher just as much as their class advisor & senior trip!   They had a yearbook from their second grade there (all grades were included in the yearbook) so had fun looking at those pictures.

(sorry I had a hard time getting a good picture with a low-level camera in the dark room!!)

Phil & Steve

Steve wasn’t in Phil’s class/school but they grew up doing a lot together and are friends still today.  (Steve runs the Bridge ministry where Phil volunteers, too.)   Steve’s wife was the main organizer of the reunion and these two are always glad to see each other!

Phil, Jerry, & Mike enjoying the second grade yearbook.

I know a lot of the others in his class so it isn’t like I don’t know anyone.  Again… the whole small town thing.  Plus I’ve lived here 27 yrs and have heard plenty about his high school days.

Thankfully we didn’t have storms while we were gone and the water has continued to drain.  Our lawn is still quite squishy which surprises me.  Phil would like his gravel back but a load of new gravel was delivered here today.

Read Full Post »


We, but especially JP, have been fully cultured for the new decade. (It doesn’t take much!  😉  )

As part of JP’s summer college class, he needed to attend a concert or more.  The grandparents attend the closer park concerts nearly every Sunday so they took him to one of those last week.

Then I found a few offerings in the next bigger town an hour away.  He chose the Tuesday night performance of the Concert Band at their park.   We headed out and arrived quite easily!

We found good seats on the provided benches and we all felt young!!  😉

It is such a nice location, nestled in the woods near the downtown!

The conductor for the concert was from an area high school and brought back 2 of his students for solos.  JP & I were glad to be in front of the percussion section and were quite impressed!!

It was actually fun  🙂  and maybe I could convince Phil to go again!

Last Thursday, JP went to another local concert with the grands.  This one was a youth symphony of mostly homeschooled students and he is doing his final paper on that.  The other concerts (if he writes an essay on them) can go for extra credit.

Read Full Post »

Flood of 2010

We had 6″+ of rain on Thursday night – Friday morning.  Then Friday night – Saturday morning we had more.  Much more.  I’d estimate another 6″ but it is hard to get a reading and most places don’t measure and report for our town.

Our power only went on & off several times, never staying off for long.  However, JP was trying to finish and submit a paper last night so moved to our computer with the battery back-up.  It just poured!  Lots of thunder & lightening too.

About 9:30 this morning, we took a tour from our house, south & east.  We found —

The force of the water rushing out of the creek banks flattened grass & shifted logs & limbs.   I’ll post the pictures smaller like this but you can click on them and see them larger.

Debris on top of the bridge tells us the water was over the bridge edge and across the road during the night.  (this is Grandpa’s road)  Phil says he would have loved to been able to see this.  I’m not so sure….

Water covered the road….

One mile south of us and then just to the right we found the water had wiped out the road!  JP hopped in the hole and he was lower than the road at his 5′ 8″ when standing on the tube.  Plus there is a 12″ curb of gravel at the edge so a foot of road had already washed away.

Were you wondering why your phone didn’t work this morning?  The rest of the line is at the bottom of the tube.  Oopsie!   (Just now after 1 p.m. we saw a twp dump truck go down the road so maybe they’ll put up a sign.  ha!)

Some of the washed area past the washed-out road.


South of the small town to the east of us.   Two of the 4 ways in are flooded.

Our highway near the small town SE of us.

The only church there… I think tomorrow’s lesson is on Noah’s preparation.  There were several vehicles there with lots of pumps running.

The other side of where the highway splits… this water was very near the point of coming over the highway.

Now these people have a bigger pool in the backyard.  There are 2 calves up by the barn trying to find ground to stand on.


The current was strong enough to move these rocks from the tube under the highway.

~~ back to our place…

Our waterway east of the house.  Normally there is no water here, just grass.

The other side of the tree shows it took out just a bit of soybeans.

And some rocks were carried from the other side of the highway to here as well.

We are safe & fine.  Thankful for the house up on the hill.  The water is filling in the cut-out area where the water pump sits in the basement but hasn’t overflowed.  So we lent our dehumidifier to one with a wet basement and pray for those with so much damage.

ETA: This just borrowed from a friend.  This is from the bigger town north of us.

Read Full Post »

First Market

Saturday I attended my first farmer’s market!  It was so much fun!!

I left here at 5:40 a.m. (argh!!) and met up with 3 others and left Lori’s at 6 a.m.  About 1/2 hr later we added another vehicle and 3 more friends to our trip.

The seven of us had SO much fun!  It was funny to be in Madison, walking the capitol square, before 8 a.m.!

I found this sign outside a coffee shoppe’ but really thought they were describing me…

The farmer’s market was HUGE and full of goodies!

Each side of the square is 2 blocks and every space of the 8 blocks was packed.  Packed with things to buy on the tree-lawn and packed with people on the sidewalks.

I think I took this picture (above) on our first lap.  By the second time around it was much more crowded.

The displays were gorgeous!  (This pic is borrowed from Lori as I thought my camera was playing the dead battery game again.  If it was, it revived later…)

Even gorgeous bouquets were available!  I got pulled in and bought a bunch thinking they’d be nice for the refreshment table at guild on Monday.  However, they didn’t like the ride home so were 😦 by Monday.

I bought:

  • 4 herb plants for $1 each   🙂
  • 1 huge head of cauliflower for $2
  • 1 huge head of cabbage for $1.50
  • fresh cheese curds which neither Phil nor I have ever had $4.75  :\
  • 3 zukes for $1
  • 2 heads of fresh garlic for $1  (I’ve only used dried cloves so what do you suggest I use these in?)
  • a bunch of green onions for $1

I was quite pleased with what I found.

We left the market just after 11, dripping hot & tired of walking!  Thankfully Shelly had led us to a close parking garage where we unloaded and packed our goodies into coolers.

Shelly led us through a mountain of road construction to a restaurant on the UW campus that overlooks a lake.  Our table on the terrace in the shade was PERFECT for our lunch!

Lori also took this great picture —

The metal chairs were so cute they also had jumbo chairs so we took another group picture there —

L – R: Judy, Ami, Lucinda, me, Lori, Sue, & Shelly

We stopped at Whole Foods for a few things and then were home by 3:30.   I quickly trimmed the flowers, ate, and showered as Phil & I were sub greeters for the early service so headed back out the door by 4:15.  Whew!  Saturday was so much fun and we are still enjoying the yummies I found there.

Read Full Post »

First Class

I had my first Beginning Fabric Dyeing class on July 9 and it was so much fun!!

We had a perfect morning to be outside in the shade.   I hung some of my hand-dyed pieces on a clothesline between 2 trees.  The gentle breeze was perfect!

I had a table out for supplies we’d need and they could use it for mixing if they didn’t want to work from their lawn chair or the ground.

Nine students came for the morning.

I loved having the class and received happy comments back as well.  Plus I learned a few things to help work out the kinks.

Nina & Molly enjoyed the cool of the basement but Nina was glad to hang out with me while I gathered supplies that afternoon to take back to the basement.

The next class, Beginning Fabric Dyeing, will be here on Friday, August 13, 2010 from 9 a.m. – 11:30 (or so).  A few would like to take the class again and that is totally fine!   I have created a page at the top above our picture for the class information.

Send me an email (jmquilts AT gmail.com) or a Facebook message to let me know you’d like to come and I’ll put you on the list.  Class is limited to 12.  Raindate is Saturday, August 14, 2010.

Read Full Post »

Poole Workshop

After all that on Sunday and K was on her way, I made a pan of Spinach Lasagna and packed up my sewing stuff for an all-day workshop on Monday.

I headed out at 7:45 Monday morning, for the neighboring guild.   They had a great facility for their workshop and I was excited to take the class with Joanie Zeier Poole.  I’ve admired her work for years as she does her own machine quilting on her home sewing machine like I do.  I have 2 of her books and took one along to be signed.

However because of the activities of Sunday (namely the family gathering), I missed her heirloom quilting class and took the invisible machine appliqué class on Monday.

Our goal —

Working —

My progress —

I don’t mind that I didn’t get very far with stitching.  We were taught how to prepare our appliqué pieces and worked on that in the morning.  We shared a potluck lunch together.  Then Joanie helped each one of us with our machines to get our stitch just right and we made stitch samplers for reference.   She had brought a long a lot of her appliqué pieces (which I wish I had photos to share!!) and it was great to hear her methods and thoughts going into each piece.

Afterwards, she had out some of her quilts to show.  Only 2 of us were new to the class on Monday as the other 6 students had taken her Sunday quilting class.  But the other lady seemed to have left early so I basically had a private showing!  🙂

It is hard to convey to her how much I LOVE her work!!  I supposed I talked like a crazed dork.   :\

This piece is done on a silk-cotton blend.  She digitized the embroidered center and the corner pieces and then used that same design in the quilting for the border.  Stunning!

Monday evening she was the speaker for the guild’s program so  I stayed in the town for the rest of the day.  (workshop was done at 3:30)   I helped the program chair move Joanie’s stuff to the program site and we set up everything for the evening.  Joanie stayed there to review her program and enjoy some quiet while Sue, Barb, & I went to Culver’s for supper.

I was surprised that about 10 other guild members then stopped at Culver’s to join for a group supper before the program.  Fun idea!

The quilt behind Joanie in the above picture is one I saw displayed at the Expo in Madison several years ago.  It is gorgeous in real life. I had to lighten this picture a bit since the room was dark and I took this without my flash so as not to interrupt her so much.

Here is a close-up I got in the afternoon —

I’m excited about the MORE ideas swimming in my head.  Hopefully, they’ll get to come out sooner rather than later.   Joanie teaches at a shop about 2 hours from here so I’m considering a 2-day to take some of her quilting classes there.

Read Full Post »

A Time to Hurry

Last weekend was a flurry of activities!

JP drummed at the mothership for all 4 services.  Because the practice for this group fell on July 5, they didn’t practice.  He left here at 1:30 Saturday afternoon for a bit of extra practice…. armed with freshly baked cookies!

Phil was busy combining his second field of wheat on Saturday afternoon having finished the first bit on Friday.   🙂

I went to early church.  Afterwards, I stopped by Walgreen’s for some prints I had sent to them in the afternoon.  I love that part of technology!  (MIL had asked me to scan some old photos.  I just missed the memo to have them printed too so had to scurry getting them printed once I found out.  Oops!)

Wanna see what I got?

Phil’s great uncle cutting rye with some new-fangled tool.  1929


From the one-room schoolhouse that is built on what used to be property that is part of the farm; long, sad, story there… and where Phil’s Dad attended.  This is 1926, before Phil’s dad was born but his 2 brothers are in this picture.  We’ve only figured out one of the uncles, tho.


This is the original farm house but many years after the house we live in had been built.  When K was little, she’d wander in here, prompting Grandma to URGE Grandpa to tear it down.  It wasn’t livable when I came on the scene.   Phil was raised here and his dad was born here.


Back to the weekend ~~~

When I got home, Phil’s nephew came up to the house as they had driven out from Ohio for a week of summer vacation on Saturday.  He helped me close the windows as I turned on the AC.  Then we headed outside to light the fire in the firepit I had built in the afternoon.  It didn’t take off very well since we had had sprinkles while I was gone at church.  Nephew suggested we use an old leaf but he struggled to find one in July.

Phil & the other men returned home and the wheat was DONE!! Yahoo!!   Phil’s dad, BIL, & nephew returned home.  Phil helped get the fire going better and I grilled brats at the deck.

Soon K came driving in… it was 8:40.  She had gotten off about 5:40 but had to sit a long time as 3 lanes merged into 1 lane with an accident at the beginning of a construction zone.  Ugh!

A bit after that, JP arrived home from church!

We gathered around the now roaring fire for brats and then marshmallows and lots of good chatter.   Nina loves finding our kindling and running off with sticks.  🙂


The next day, JP headed back to church at 7:30 and Phil went for the early service after he finished chores.  K worked on laundry and a flower flourish for her hair (where is that picture???)  while I labeled fair entries.

Phil came back home and soon we returned and headed out to lunch.  After we finished, we met JP at a large parking lot and took him through McD’s for a quick lunch for him.  We headed to this week’s fairgrounds and I …. FINALLY …. checked in my entries.   I find it odd that the superintendent wasn’t there for the 1:00 check-in until 1:10.


we could finally drive a bit west (20 miles?) to Phil’s cousin’s 50th anniversary party.   “L” is only a bit younger than Phil’s dad so it throws off the whole generation thing as his kids are our age.

Phil (R) with his cousin

Phil’s nephew and his 11 yr old moustache

K went through the 50th wedding album with Phil’s parents.  Grandpa was in the wedding and K loved seeing the dresses & hair pieces.

Phil & me

Phil’s sister and her husband

After the party, we drove through very hard rain to get back to JP’s truck. The men went home and K & I went to the grocery stores.   Once home, K got in a very short nap while I grilled food for her week of lunches and finished her last load of laundry.

We made a quick trip to Phil’s parents for pizza with everyone, returned home, K packed her food, car, and clean laundry and was headed back to the city by 6:40 p.m.!

Unfortunately she ran into  the heavy storm but still made it home in good time.  A VERY short visit but we are always glad to see her.

And that my friends, is part of why you haven’t had many updates this week!

Read Full Post »

Birthday Bonuses

And then….

Sheila mailed me a package “just because” she is praying for my family and she is super sweet and it just so happened to be right around my birthday….   🙂

Pale pink with a butterfly

Pink & Green lacy

These are the SOFTEST dishcloths I have EVER felt!  Luscious!!

I said to JP, “they are too pretty to use!”  To which he reminded me how much that grates on me when someone says that about my soap.    🙂   So I will use them.  Just had to show you first.

And then…

When K came home over the Long 4th Weekend, she brought birthday blessings too!

A bundle of fabrics by Kaffe Fassett (a designer of bright moderns that I like) from her neighborhood quilt shop.  (I do wish they’d be more friendly to this 20-something customer!! Hmpf!!  If you know them, give them a clue.  :p )

And this ring —

Do you see what it is made from?????



And it is HONKIN’ cool & big!   🙂

Read Full Post »

Older Posts »