" Fear not, for I have redeemed you.
I have summoned you by name; you are mine.
When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and when you pass through the rivers, they will not sweep over you.
When you walk through the fire, you will not be burned; the flames will not set you ablaze.
For I am the LORD, your God, the Holy One of Israel, your Saviour."
Isaiah 43:1-4

Create in me a pure heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me." Psalm 51:10

Thursday, August 9, 2018

Prep work, Kelley's move, and Rod Stewart

I've been getting a bit of quilting done since I last posted.  One of the projects was a secret, and I haven't received word that it has been gifted, so I'd better not say more about it.  But it was a project that I had forgotten about, so it was good to be able to check it off of my 'to do' list.

Yesterday, I cleared the furniture away in my living room, and set up my basting frame for this quilt.  County Fair time sort of snuck up on me, so I don't guess I'm going to have an entry, but atleast it has motivated me to do a little bit of prep work this week.

I resurrected a batting (from my shed) that I have had in storage for

probably 20 years !  It is one of two that I bought at an estate sale back then.   They were both 'new' in the package, and I used one of them on several smaller projects many years ago.  It made the most drapeable quilt that I have ever produced, so I hoarded the second one, waiting for a very special project.  Well, time has gotten away from me, and I figure that I either use it or now, or it winds up in MY estate sale some day.  I

I bought a luscious solid fabric in coral for this backing, thinking that it will give me a nice option for flipping the quilt over and using it as a whole-cloth look sometimes.

On July 2nd, my daughter and her family moved to Clarksville as her husband has been restationed at Ft. Campbell.  It's so nice to have them so near to me after all these years of them being 12 or more hours away !
She had said that if she ever lived close to me, she would take me to see Rod Stewart live in concert.   Well, surprisingly, that opportunity presented itself on the first of August, so her husband drove down to take me up to their house for a few days.  She and I attended my first 'real' concert, and we had a WONDERFULLY MEMORABLE night !

It was great to get to spend some quality family time too, before Tim had to leave for a year in South Korea.  We played monopoly late into the evening one night, and really got to see each other's competitive side.  It was fun.

I like this photo of Tim and the kids at the airport.

Thursday, July 12, 2018

"Tracking East"

This is my latest quilt-top.  I got the idea from a quilt that I saw on Moda's Bake Shop, I think.  I'm not sure because I see these things that I want to make, but that I do not need a pattern to figure out,  and I save the photo, but not always the details.

 I did not make it to sell, though that COULD happen eventually as I have so many quilts at this point.  Their quilt was titled, "Jane's Ladder".  I have just found it here, offered as a free pdf pattern, so if you like it, go wild !

I pulled all of the limey/medium greens that I could find, and eventually had to throw in a few that weren't exactly what I wanted, but that worked anyway.  For the other 4 colorways, I used mostly "good neighbor" prints from Connecting Threads, plus other fabrics that I thought would continue the look.  The background fabric is a text fabric, also from Connecting Threads.

They are 8-inch finished blocks, set 7 blocks by 9 blocks, so it currently measures approximately 56 inches by 72 inches.  I have no plans for adding borders, as this is my favorite size to make currently.....a large nap quilt/twin bed topper.
under construction
It was a pleasant way to pass the hours while it is so very hot outside.  I DO miss working at Walmart, but don't miss being constantly worn out, and worrying about what I was going to fix to take for dinners and eat at home, too.  And now I'm told that they're phasing out all part-time positions, so it appears that the LORD gave me just what I needed, WHEN I needed it, and now that time has passed !   Praise God in His ultimate wisdom !
My daughter and her family got moved to Tennessee (restationed with the army), and I had my first experience with driving up to see them.  I don't think I'll be doing that VERY MUCH, but it's so good to know they're so much closer to me now !

Wednesday, June 6, 2018

Borders ON !

Okay, I just finished attaching the borders to James' memorial, flannel-shirt quilt-top.

Now the search begins for a backing and batting.  I want a really soft, cuddly, comforting quilt.   Because these fabrics were cut from shirts that were repeatedly worn and washed, they are just totally broken in and drapey.  I MUST find a backing and batting that lets the finished quilt feel that way.

While pushing the top through my machine just now, my wrist was REALLY rebelling !  Those movements were definitely not welcomed, so I don't know HOW I'll get this thing machine-quilted.  I was hoping for a Fathers' Day finish, but that's looking (and feeling) doubtful.

Still, progress feels good !

Friday, June 1, 2018

Memorial quilt top progress

The center is all pieced together, measuring approximately 61 inches square.

I have enough shirting left to add length.  I'll probably add 6 x 15 inch pieces of each shirt to top and bottom to finish up a rectangular top.

The star section is made from a tiny grey and black plaid that I found in our local fabric store.  That and Walmart were my only local choices.  I felt that I had settled, but it turned out to be just the right choice to go with all the different colors of plaid shirts.

In other news, after being 'retired' for 3 weeks, rather than feeling rested up and energized, I have practically no energy or incentive to do much of anything.  I don't know what's going on, and it makes me feel worthless,; so I'm happy to atleast be making progress on my year-long desire to make this memorial quilt for my daughter.   Hopefully, it will be done by Father's Day, or atleast sometime this summer.

Wednesday, May 30, 2018

Memorial quilt begun

Last night, I began cutting up James' flannel shirts in preparation for making his memorial quilt. 

Maybe this is why I haven't been able to make anything else lately.  It's time for this to begin.

Monday, May 28, 2018

Slow down !

Spring took FOREVER to get here, and now it's moving way too fast.  Soon, most of the perennials will have finished blooming, but I have a few more pictures to share today.
Volunteer Coreopsis have come up along the discarded phone pole.  Love that !
A red Lily shows up underneath the mailbox.
This is the pink Coneflower that I bought at end of season last year.  It's planted in the bed along the front sidewalk.

The Delphinium are blooming up against the Rose of Sharon bush.

No news on the quilting front.  I seem to have 'quilters' block'.  Hope it passes soon !   Being retired makes for long boring days !   But Walmart proved faithful and is paying me my paid-time-off, and my 'myshare bonus' on a check this week.  I figured I'd have to wait longer than this.

I didn't file a workman's comp claim for my hurting wrist, and am praying that rest and the LORD's mercy will restore it.

We enjoyed a visit from my sister's husband (widowed in October of last year) this week.  He drove out to the east coast from California.

Wednesday, May 16, 2018

Unwelcome visitors

Twice in the same week !
First, about 3 days ago, I see this one crawing ACROSS MY FRONT YARD !   I follow him, videotaping on my phone, and he disappears underneath my back deck.
Then, today, while attempting to transplant a few volunteer Blackeyed Susans, I nearly step on this one.  He was lying just over my boundary line in the backyard of the next door (unoccupied) property.

I don't know if this is two separate snakes, or the same snake seen twice, but I'm not loving it !

Tuesday, May 15, 2018

Spring Gardening, 2018

I haven't been keeping up with much quilting, but, praise God, thanks to perennials, the garden goes on!

Here are a few pictures from this morning.  Warning,.....there are LOTS of Daisies !   Years ago, I stopped alongside a country road and dug up a few clusters of Daisies that were growing wild.  I moved them when I moved to this place, and they continue to grow and spread.  I have to make myself mow them sometimes, but this one patch that I leave out by my shade garden is becoming my 'field of Daisies', and I love it.   I guess it'll be more of a daisy patch, but that's fine.  It makes me smile.

These Salvia beside the front porch are really 'givers', just showing out every Spring ! 

And I have quite a few Sweet Williams plants scattered all around the place.  I love how they come up in different colors within the same little patch.

There's a double Knockout Rose at the entrance of the driveway, and a little birdhouse, in the shape of a little travel trailer, adorning the address sign.

 My Coreopsis (yellow) didn't do much last year, but I took the time to spread it's seed afterwards, and they came back wonderfully this year.  That golden touch is so refreshing and eye-catching !

Out in the shade garden, the Spiderwort is slowing spreading itself with new little bunches here and there.  I love that, as long as it doesnt just take over !  I sprinkled it with Blood Meal when it first started coming in again this Spring, and even kindo 'tented' branches over the clumps, to keep the deer away.   Oh how they love the new green sprouts !   Probably like we look forward to our first garden tomato of the year. 

Monday, May 14, 2018

Well, MAYBE I'm back !

The big news is that I"VE RETIRED ! 

That's a fancy way for saying that I had to resign my stocking job at Walmart !   I drove myself hard for a full year, and it took a toll on my knees, hips, and most recently, my left wrist.  I just couldn't keep doing that kind of damage to this old, 60-yr.-old body of mine.  I have no desire to undergo surgeries for new parts, or reconditioned old ones ! 

So,........maybe I'll get reaquainted with my old Singer .  I've already been doing a bit of catch-up work on the flowerbeds. 

Anyway........no photo today, but I hope that you'll welcome me back !   More changes..........I guess that's life, huh?

Thursday, March 8, 2018

Bye-bye WIFI

Sorry to be absent for so long !

I'm awaiting a new bundle price from Spectrum again, so I'm using Hardee's WIFI for now.

But all is good on the homefront, and I've squeezed in a bit of sewing time lately.  Here are the photos of my finished Orange (Aqua/blue/green) Peels quilt top.  It measures 77 x 94, bigger than the wide backing that I purchased for it months ago, so I'll be re-shopping for a back.

It's going to be quite a job getting this one basted out on the covered carport, so I'm waiting and watching for a nice, warm, still day.

Monday, January 22, 2018

Another Free Monday !

And I enjoyed spending it in my sewing room.

I've had these leftover pieces hanging on my wall catching my eye each time I pass the sewing room doorway.  I have little real need for a quilt this size, and I can hear the ghost of my dear departed  husband saying, "what good is a quilt that is that small?"  I love the man, but that question did get on my nerves.
Measures approximately 35" by 43".

What GOOD it is.......is getting me into the sewing room for a day's worth of mindless, peaceful sewing, cutting and pressing without any worry over WHAT FOR.   I needed just that.

And it's pretty, don't you think?  I get a kick out of hanging something different on my living room quilt rack every couple of months, but many of them, even though small, are big enough to atleast be a baby or lap quilt, so I didn't put hanging sleeves on them.  This means that I have to pin them over the hanging rod and that's a nuisance.

So I've decided that when I am in need of a quick 'quilting fix', I can just whip up something specifically for hanging there !   Sounds fun and opens up the possibility for all kinds of things that I wouldn't take the time to make if having to fit a bed.

Maybe I'll even hand-quilt this one, just to have lap-work.

I hope you're enjoying some 'stay in and stay happily occupied' time !

Tuesday, January 2, 2018

Back in the sewing room

On my second Monday off, I finally went in to the sewing room and cleared that piled up cutting table.  I started looking around for some little project to get into, and came across a picture I had saved on my computer.  These pieced birds show up all over the place, but I know that I have read about them on the patchy menagerie's blog.

I didn't use her tutorial.  I can just look at some piecing designs and figure them out on my own, and I don't intend to sell this design, so I just tried making one up for fun.
Besides making that block, I dug into some scraps leftover from a quilt that I made for my second grandson years ago.  These strips were just too intrigueing to throw away, and I'm so glad that I found a good use for them.  I'm wild about these hotpads that I made.
They're not thick enough for, nor are they intended to be used for, actual potholders.  I use them when holding a plate or bowl to eat in the living room.  My coworkers laugh because I take them to work with me, along with real dishes to warm my meals.  But, why not?  It's the little things in life that bring you daily joy, right?

So, that's my report for the new year's beginning.  Feels like it's off to a good start.  I hope yours is filled with little things that bring YOU happiness.

Saturday, December 23, 2017

Last workday before Christmas !

I'm getting ready to go in to work in a couple of hours, but wanted to take a few minutes to catch up here.

I accomplished quite a bit on my day off yesterday.  I had two little quilts that I was trying to finish for a brother and sister up the street from me.  They are being raised by their great grandmother, Rose (I've mentioned her MANY times), and have become my 'surrogate' grandkids, supplying me with much needed hugs and lovin'.
 This one is for Elisabeth.......it is hand-quilted because I started it earlier this year, just wanting something to work on and keep my hands busy.  I think she'll enjoy discovering all the different things there are to discover in the blocks.  She's 6.
The dots on the back are from a fatquarter packet that I received as a gift from my friend, Wanda Gayle.  I'm wild about this back, but it didn't photograph well with my phone.
This second quilt is for Elijah......it is machine-quilted due to time restraints.  These fabrics were among the many that JoAnn sent to me when she was purging her sewing room.  It's not my best work, but I hope that it will give him fun picking out the animals and learning how to spell and read their names.  He's 7.
This morning I got them wrapped and ready to give to the kids when they come back from visiting with their mom and other family members.

Kelley sent a package FULL of gifts, and because she got a new phone with FACETIME, we're planning on opening gifts together on Christmas morning.

As far as work goes, I got my new schedule for the first week of the new year.  I asked them to take me down from 33 hours per week to 27 or so.  Well,.......they went down to 21 !  So that means that I'll only be working 3 days per week that week.  We'll have to see if it stays that way for consecutive weeks , but I'm looking forward to the time.

In the meantime, I want to wish a joyous, blessed Christmas to all of my blogging friends, and hope that 2018 holds wonderful things in store for each of you. 

Sunday, December 10, 2017

Baby, It's COLD outside !

What a weinee I've become if I think THIS is cold !   This is just normal December temps....finally.  Atleast we didn't get the big snow that they predicted for the east coast and throughout Mississippi, Alabama, and even the state of TEXAS.   How delighted those kids must have been !

But, braving what felt pretty cold to me yesterday,  I dressed in a Christmas red sweater, red boots, and my Minnie Mouse boggin, 

and headed off to our church's annual Christmas outing for the widows' group.   I usually don't attend their outings because they always take place on my workdays, but I dressed for work, popped on a red sweater that could be removed later, and went and had myself a good time. 

I ordered a meal with blackened Tilapia, not knowing that it would have some HEAT to it.   But, thankfully, the sweet tea kept it under control.  We started the dirty Santa exchange of gifts just before I had to go, so I was blessed to get to keep the wonderful "Bless This Home" doormat that I picked when it was my turn.

Then it was a short night at work, one of my 2-9 p.m. shifts, that just flew by ( I love it when that happens !)

By the way, on Friday, I brought up my desire to work fewer hours, and the person who arranges the schedules wants me to come in on Monday and let her know what I want, and we'll see what she can arrange, starting with the New Year's first week's schedule.  I'm told by one of the other workers that they always start giving fewer hours in the first couple of months of the year, but this way, she'll know to keep me on that kind of schedule unless I say differently.

So.........my widow's benefits started with the first of this month, and hopefully things will go along well at work to allow me a little more time to enjoy life.

Christmas shopping is underway too, but the kids won't get to come here.   I surely had hoped that I would atleast get a few hours with my baby girl and her crew as they stopped over for a night while on their way back to his folks' place in Oklahoma.   But plans changed.  It's possible that they'll be relocating to a base only 2 hours away sometime next summer, so I look forward to that with great hope and anticipation.

My brother, John, and his wife, Deb, took me out to dinner on the Friday after my 60th birthday, to celebrate.  We had a delicious fish dinner at a little cafe near the Tennessee river.  It was a good night !
Then, on Thursday of last week, I went out to put my lunchbox in my jeep after dinner, only to realize that I had no KEY !   When I had gone to clip them onto my beltloop that afternoon after arriving at work, I had missed the loop and they fell between my legs onto the seat.   I always hit the lock button when I get out, so I locked it without realizing my mistake.  Thankfully, when I couldn't reach the brother that lives right here in town, John graciously agreed to drive in from 5 or so miles out in the country to my house to find my hidden spare set of keys.   I wasn't even sure that there was a jeep key included in that set.  I thought that I might have only added a house and storage shed key.  But I was blessed to find that there WAS one on there, thanked THE LORD, and John, and then, on my evening break,  had more keys made.  Now I have one in my jacket pocket and one in my wallet, too !

So, that's how my last couple of weeks have gone.   I hope you're enjoying a merry holiday time.  I'm quilting one small older project, and just finished piecing a new small one, hoping to gift them to the great grandkids of a friend/neighbor up the street.   They fill my need for little ones in my life and I want them to know that they are loved in return.    Hope I get time to FINISH these quilts !

Monday, November 27, 2017

Well, it's official......

.............I'm 60 !.............

Yesterday morning found me staying in bed, savoring a day of rest after 6 straight work days, including Thanksgiving day.  I was exhausted and worshiped God at home by being truly grateful for a comfortable bed and no commitments.  

I posted on Facebook, around noon, that all I wanted was a Buttermilk Crispy Chicken sandwich.  My dear neighbor/friend, Rose, called to ask where it could be found.   When I told her McDonald's, she sent her son, Don, to get me one.  I made myself decent really fast, and climbed out of bed long enough to take care of nature's call and answer the door for my lunch.  

I ate the sandwich, (again so thankful), turned on ICE AGE, the movie, on my IPhone, and lay back in bed again, watching and snoozing until 2:30 p.m., when my daughter called with birthday wishes.  I then decided to climb out of bed, and boy, was I refreshed !
I walked up the street to visit with Rose, and they asked me back up after supper to share some cookies and creme pie.  They are such precious friends !

Now, tonight I come home from work to find 2 birthday cards in my mailbox.  The one from my daughter just totally brought me to tears, both with the card's sentiment, and with the personal note that she wrote in it.  And, missing the one that always comes from my half-sister in California (she recently passed away), I found that her husband had gone out of his way to make sure that I still received one, this time from him.   He and I have talked by phone several times since she got sick, feeling that we could totally understand each other's sad situation.  

So, anyway, I have to say that it was a good birthday.  My biggest decision right now is whether or not to keep working.   It's really wearisome and yet it's a good time filler.  Trouble is, it's a little too time-intensive.  When my widow's pension starts in December, it will be almost the same as what I'm making by working.  And if I make more next year, (which I will if I work a full year, Social Security will withhold some of my income from them.  I need a middle ground, so I'm going to go to the LORD about it.   

But, the real fun yesterday evening was that I dug out a baby quilt that has been lying around my sewing room FOR MONTHS waiting for me to get back to hand-quilting it.  I figured maybe it would work like the old New Year's eve adage "whoever you kiss at midnight, you'll be kissing throughout the year",  I'm saying, " If you spend some time quilting on your BIRTHDAY, you'll be doing IT throughout the year!"  

It was SO ENJOYABLE working on it, and I forgot the magic that happens when you add hand-quilting to a project !   LOVE LOVE LOVE !

Friday, November 24, 2017

I SURVIVED working Walmart's Black Thursday

I want to go on record here in my blog that I worked my first Black Thursday sale at Walmart and came out totally unscathed.....glory to GOD !

I was told on Wednesday to dress warm for Thursday, because I would be working the parking lot, directing cars around to the side door where they could pick up their big items.

When I came in Thursday afternoon,  I was met by another employee, telling me that I was assigned to the associates working movies/games  INSIDE.
    Well, I ALMOST went and changed out of my fleece tights and undershirt that I was wearing, but I am so glad that I decided to wait.   The games and movies were set up in front of the long meat coolers, and it was COLD over there.   Thankfully, only my little tushy felt the cold when I would prop myself on the edge of a cooler.  The standing on my feet for hour after hour was the only rough part of the evening........mostly I felt wasted.  I had to be the bad guy that told people they were at the exit of the movie area, and that they had to go around to the other end if they wanted to shop games and movies.

I was happy when the time came for me to start stocking shelves again.

On the Thanksgiving side of things, I wound up having two different meals provided by friends and family.  I got to talk to my daughter and my brother and brother-in-law.  It was a blessed day, all in all.

I apologize to those who follow this blog for quilty goodness......I'm afraid there's not much of that going on right now.   Hopefully, more in the future !

I hope you're stuffed, blessed, and happy this weekend.  Enjoy your family time and God's goodness, and be sure to take time to be thankful.

Friday, November 17, 2017

Checking back in......

........as seldom as I post lately, this may be the last post that I make while I'm still in my FIFTIES !

For the first time since I started working, I have three days off in a row !   Next week, I have to work 6 days straight, mostly until 11 p.m.!  Then, the next day, on Sunday, the 26th, I (LORD willing) will 

turn SIXTY !!!

60 !

So, to celebrate this 3-day wonder, I drove all by myself to Columbia, treated myself to lunch at Long John Silver's, and then spent the afternoon doing some me-shopping

 and some Christmas shopping--only to find out that Kelley and the kids probably won't be heading this way for Christmas after all.

But I thoroughly enjoyed my day, and was more worn out at the conclusion of shopping than I am after a full day of work sometimes.

So, just incase I don't post again before Thursday, I'm hoping that you all enjoy YOUR time with family this coming week of THANKSGIVING.  If things get stressful, just remember that the flip side of that is very quiet and lonely.  Love the ones you're blessed to be with, and I'll try to do the same.  After all, I've found quite a sweet and fun bunch of people to spend my working days with too !

(especially you, Jan !)

Tuesday, November 7, 2017

Feeling puny

I've got my first cold of the year, and it's the first time in 40 years that I've had work to go to when I felt bad.  Makes me admire how MANY, many times my husband went to work feeling horribly bad.   He was such a good provider.

In the night last night, I coughed so hard my lungs burned and I thought that I was going to be heading out to the doctor's office.  But I managed to grab a nap midmorning, and I feel okay to go on into work right now.   My biggest problem seems to be that I don't have much appetite, so it's hard to keep up my energy; but God got me through yesterday, and I know I can continue to count on Him.

Hope you're all doing well and enjoying the change in seasons.

Monday, October 16, 2017

Thoughts to ponder

I'd like to share this morning's devotional reading from the little publication, Beside the Still Waters.

"Cancer, that dreaded word!  It is an incurable disease today as leprosy was in Naaman's day.  Much research is done to understand the cause and find a cure.  Sin is much like physical cancer.  It slowly but certainly eats away at the soul of man.  But human reasoning goes to great lengths to classify sin as simply the result of our weakness or our environment.  God sees everything, but sometimes cancer escapes the most skilled surgeon's eyes.  In fact, cancer may remain hidden until nothing can be done about it.

Cancer cannot be cured, though treatment can cause it to go into remission.  In contrast, sin that is properly dealt with by the blood of Jesus, can be completely cured.  Once cancer starts, it often takes the victim's life.  Likewise, if we continue in sinful  habits, they will lead to spiritual death.  As cancer causes its victim to lose his natural appetite, so sin robs us of our appetite for God and His Word.

Cancer will cause people to suffer things they never imagined before.  Sin will also bring unimagineable bondage and suffering.  Though sin eats silently like cancer, God always has a remedy for it.  The remedy is to repent and find healing through the blood of Jesus.  For cancer victims to be in remission is a cause of joy.  Being healed from sin is reason to be very glad as Naaman was after his leprosy was gone.

Patients are generally careful to follow a physician's advice for treating cancer.  But many people are unwilling to do what Christ requires to be healed from sin.  May we be among those to whom He says, "Thy faith hath made thee whole; go in peace, and be whole of thy plague" (Mark 5:34)"

Sunday, October 15, 2017

Celebrating and Mourning, praise GOD

It was with sadness and some shock that I learned that my sister passed away yesterday morning.

She was diagnosed with Pancreatic cancer about a month ago, and while battling pain from Spinal Stenosis, she had begun chemo treatments.   But it was her heart that gave out yesterday, and she has gone to be with the LORD.

We had a wonderful, long phone conversation a week ago, and she told me that she was at peace with whatever the outcome.......healing, or passing into eternity.  I thank God that she did not have to endure a long, miserable fight with this vile disease.