Friday, April 29, 2011

Frantic Friday

The move is underway.  When I left at around 9:00 last night, almost all their stuff was loaded up.  Evidently they kept at it after I left and again this morning because DSIL and a friend dropped off the last of their stuff that is coming to our house (for storage in the basement).  DH left to help them start unpacking at the new house later this morning (after closing).  I can't believe he'll get to see their new house before I do!  ha!  Of course, I get to have T time while they're doing the work, so I can't complain.  ;-)  I'm not sure what's on the agenda for the rest of the day, but there's light at the end of the tunnel ... and that's good news!  And all the glory goes to God for bringing about the sale (of their old house and their new house) and providing the workers. 

Have a blessed weekend!

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Thankful Thursday

Today is Thursday, so that means it’s time for Thankful Thursday … an opportunity to take a little time for some intentional thankfulness.
I will give thanks to the LORD because of his righteousness; I will sing the praises of the name of the LORD Most High.  Psalm 7:17
I’m thankful for:
  • the flexibility and understanding of my supervisors … when I got the call that DD had to take T#4 to the pediatrician (during nap time) which meant that she needed me to come up and watch the other Ts, my supervisor didn’t bat an eye when I told her that I needed to take the rest of the day off. 
  • the opportunity to return to work part time … with the uncertainty about the economy and our retirement nest egg, it’s nice to be able to supplement our retirement income.
  • the generosity of my co-workers who’ve got me supplied with plenty of good reading material for the next several months! 
  • the ability to help DD & DSIL get ready for their move.
  • the sun shining after OH. SO. MUCH. RAIN.
  • having the next 5 days off … of course, I’ll be working harder than I would if I were at work, but that extra hour’s sleep each morning will be wonderful!  And I do hope to be able to finish up the doll quilt and get started on hand quilting T#4’s big girl quilt.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Wednesday Hodgepodge

Once again Joyce has come up with some interesting questions for this week’s Hodgepodge.  I know I say that every week, but it’s true … I don’t know how she does it … but I’m thankful that she does.  If you’d like to join in (the more the merrier, you know), just click on the button below.



1. What is something that bothers you if it is not done perfectly?

Seriously just one thing?  I’m a perfectionist type A with OCD tendencies.  It might be easier to answer what is something that does NOT bother me if it’s not done perfectly!  ha! 

2. What is one of your best childhood memories?

Sitting in the living room, on the floor, with a big wedge of homegrown watermelon on one of those old-fashioned Coca Cola trays, listening to the Cardinals broadcast on the radio, keeping score on a sheet of paper leftover from school.

3. Do you plan to watch the Royal Wedding and when was the last time you wore a hat?

I don’t plan to watch the Royal Wedding.  There are only two reasons I’d get up that early:  an emergency and to head off to one of our trips to the beach!

And I’m not sure that I’ve ever worn a hat … I can’t even remember the last time I wore a cap. 

4. Where do you fall in the birth order in your family? Do you think this has influenced your personality?

I’m the oldest.  And I’d have to say that I do believe I have many of the compliant traits of a first-born.

Compliant Traits

  • People Pleasers
  • Crave Approval
  • Nurturers
  • Caregivers
  • Reliable
  • Conscientious
  • Cooperative
  • Team Players
  • "Grin and bear it" mentality

Aggressive Traits

  • Movers and shakers
  • Natural leaders
  • Perfectionists
  • Driven
  • Conventional
  • Always have things under control
  • Assertive
  • Want things their way

These two types of first born children may seem very different, but they do share quite a few characteristics.

Common Traits

  • Energetic
  • Logical
  • Ambitious
  • Enterprising
  • Scholarly

5. Where do you think you spend most of your money?

We have two categories of our budget that are tied for largest amount expended … groceries and charitable giving. 

6. When you need to confront someone would you rather communicate in person, on the phone, by email or by letter? Why?

Email or letter.  I don’t like confrontation, and if I can write out (either on the computer or on paper) what I need to say, I find that I can take the time to edit my thoughts instead of saying the first thing that comes into my mind (and avoid saying something that I’ll regret) … it also allows me to be able to stay on target and avoid bringing in unrelated issues.

7. Dodge ball, freeze tag, kickball or jump rope? You have to pick one.


In looking for a picture of a kickball to include with my answer to #7, I learned that there are adult kickball leagues.  And I thought it was just a schoolyard game. 

8. Insert your own random thought here.

DD & her family move in just a couple of days … in fact, they start loading up their stuff tomorrow evening.  We got a head start on the move last night by bringing a lot of their excess stuff to our house … some is staying here because they don’t have as much storage at this house and some is here only temporary until DD decides what to do with the stuff (yard sale, give it away, take it to Goodwill, etc.).  I’m tired and sore this morning, but I can “rest up” at work today.  ha! 

Monday, April 25, 2011

The Weekend Wrap-Up

This weekend I:

  • finished hand quilting a doll quilt for T#2 (she got a doll for Christmas, and I took 6 leftover blocks from her big girl quilt and pieced them together to make a doll quilt).  I need to bind it; I pulled out the leftover scraps from that quilt to see if I have enough fabric to make binding … I hope to get that done this week.
  • survived some pretty major storms that hit our area (more storm warnings for this evening <sigh>)
  • made the carrot cake and layered salad for Easter at DD’s
  • watched some baseball and a movie with DH
  • worked in the toddler nursery at church during the first service (we had quite a few visitors, including a family who’s 2-3 y.o. boy was in the nursery for the first time … he had to sit in the “time-out” chair 4 times! … in the 50 minutes!).
  • had breakfast between the early and late service … our deacons always serve breakfast on Easter, and I do believe that this year’s was the best yet.
  • spent the rest of the day at DD’s … watched the Ts “hunt” for eggs and open their gifts … T#1 really enjoyed his pillow pet, which made the hunt for his (a brown bear) worth all the effort! … had Easter dinner with DD & family and DSIL’s parents (we had pork steaks cooked out on the grill with au gratin potatoes, baked beans, layered salad with carrot cake and Texas cake).
It was a wonderful Easter weekend!

Sunday, April 24, 2011

He is risen!

He is risen indeed

The angel said to the women, “Do not be afraid, for I know that you are looking for Jesus, who was crucified.  He is not here; he has risen, just as he said. Come and see the place where he lay.  Then go quickly and tell his disciples: ‘He has risen from the dead and is going ahead of you into Galilee. There you will see him.’  Matthew 28:5-7

Wishing you all a blessed Resurrection Day!

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Lull between the storms

What a spring we’ve had here in southwestern Illlinois.  We’ve had more severe storms this spring than any other spring, at least it surely seems that way to me.  I can’t count the number of times we’ve gathered up our stuff (laptops [to keep us entertained], cell phones, portable radio, dogs … and of course Diet Cokes ha!) and headed to the basement.  I’m so ready to be done with the spring storms!   And those of you who are tired of reading about the wacky weather we’ve been having here over the last 4-5 months are probably wishes we could be done with these storms as well!  ha!

Yesterday’s storms (yes, I said storms) were probably the fiercest of the season.  The morning saw round one, bringing large hail, damaging winds and significant rainfall.  There was 1 1/2 inch hail reported at the University (thankfully I had the day off, so my van was parked safely in our garage).  DH had gone to Sam’s to purchase the food for Easter breakfast at church tomorrow; thankfully he got back into town just as the hail was petering out.  

After that storm passed through, we headed to our church where I basted the newly completed quilt top to the batting and backing (as a deacon, DH has a key to the building, and I can pull together several folding tables in one of the classrooms and have enough room to lay out the layers for my quilt).  It was probably the most difficult top to baste … I’m not sure why … I certainly didn’t have this much trouble with the queen sized quilt I finished last December.  But I persevered and got it basted and am ready to start the hand quilting.  I’ll share a picture of the finished top, with the warning that #1 my trust assistant wasn’t in the mood to stand on the couch and hold the quilt top … he told me that I could take one photo and that was it (I don’t have a lot of confidence in my picture taking so I like to take several … in hopes that one of the bunch will be worth sharing ha!) and #2 I finished the top late at night, so I took the photo in a less-than-ideal setting (nighttime with indoor lighting); as a result the colors are a little washed out. 

After we got back home from basting, round two of yesterday’s storms arrived.  There were tornadoes reported west of St. Louis heading our way.  We had strong winds and heavy rains, and when the sirens started, we head for the basement (oh how I’ve missed a finished basement this spring! ha!).  A tornado hit Lambert airport (about 35 minutes from here), virtually destroying one of the concourses; thankfully no one was seriously injured.  A tornado touched down in a town here on the East Side, just 12 miles away from our house … and it was making a beeline toward our little village.  Praise God that the tornado didn’t touch down and there was no further damage in our area. 

There are more storms in the forecast for the next several days.  We’re praying that they’ll just be your standard-issue thunderstorms, without the hail, high winds, and tornado sightings.  In the meantime, we’re going to enjoy the lull the between the storms today.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Thankful Thursday

Once again, it’s Thursday, and I’m taking a few moments to be intentionally thankful.  Give thanks to the LORD, for he is good; his love endures forever. 1st Chronicles 16:34
I’m thankful for:
  • the opportunity to serve in the toddler nursery at church; those toddler years are my favorites
  • DH well on the road to recovery with his bronchitis
  • getting the time today to finish the quilt top for T#4’s big girl quilt top
  • getting out with DH for a walk around the neighborhood this afternoon
  • my dad getting released from his ophthalmologist from his cataract surgery
  • things falling into place for DD & DSIL to close on their (old and new) houses next week
  • coming together with my brothers and sisters in Christ to observe the Lord’s Supper tomorrow evening as we focus on our Lord and His sacrifice
Maundy Thursday blessings to you!

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Wednesday Hodgepodge–Easter Edition

Every Wednesday, Joyce hosts the Wednesday Hodgepodge meme … a fun way to get to know other bloggers.  I always look forward to Wednesdays and the Hodgepodge.  If you’d like to see how others answer this week’s questions, just click on the link above.
1. What are your plans for Easter Day/weekend?
Saturday I’ll be making a carrot cake.  Sunday, I’ll be working in the baby nursery during the early service, having breakfast and watching the littles hunt for Easter eggs between services, and in worship during the second service.  Afterwards, we’ll all go to DD’s for more Easter egg hunting, lunch, and good times. 

2. Besides Jesus, what one person from The Bible would you most like to meet and why?
I think I’d like to meet Paul.  I find a lot of encouragement in his writings, particularly this passage:
I am unspiritual, sold as a slave to sin. I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do. And if I do what I do not want to do, I agree that the law is good. As it is, it is no longer I myself who do it, but it is sin living in me. For I know that good itself does not dwell in me, that is, in my sinful nature. For I have the desire to do what is good, but I cannot carry it out. For I do not do the good I want to do, but the evil I do not want to do—this I keep on doing. Now if I do what I do not want to do, it is no longer I who do it, but it is sin living in me that does it.
So I find this law at work: Although I want to do good, evil is right there with me. For in my inner being I delight in God’s law; but I see another law at work in me, waging war against the law of my mind and making me a prisoner of the law of sin at work within me. What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body that is subject to death? Thanks be to God, who delivers me through Jesus Christ our Lord!
I could have written those words myself, and I am sure that Paul can commiserate and encourage me to be able to persevere so that I too can say what Paul said
I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith.
3. What is one modern day convenience you didn't have as a child that was easy to live without?
I don’t know … it was “easy” to live without all the modern-day conveniences we have now … if only because we can’t miss what we don’t know/never had. 
4. Are you more right brained or left brained? If you don't know what that means there is an interesting little quiz here.
Thank you for taking the Creativity Test. The results show your brain dominance as being:
Left Brain 65%
Right Brain 35%
You are more left-brained than right-brained. Your left brain controls the right side of your body. In addition to being known as left-brained, you are also known as a critical thinker who uses logic and sense to collect information. You are able to retain this information through the use of numbers, words, and symbols. You usually only see parts of the "whole" picture, but this is what guides you step-by-step in a logical manner to your conclusion. Concise words, numerical and written formulas and technological systems are often forms of expression for you. Some occupations usually held by a left-brained person include a lab scientist, banker, judge, lawyer, mathematician, librarian, and skating judge.
Somehow I am definitely NOT surprised.  Remember, I was an accountant … and definitely anal-retentive enough to have been a pretty good one (I love to tease DH, who was also an accountant, that he wasn’t anal-retentive enough to have been a good accountant.  ha!  Seriously, he’s not anal-retentive, but he was still a pretty good accountant.).
5. What is something you intended to do today but didn't? Why?
Since I’m posting this in the morning, I’m not sure what I’m going to fail to do that as of this morning I intend to do.   
6. Cadbury Creme Eggs or Reeses peanut butter?
Neither.  I’m not a fan of soft-centered chocolates nor peanut butter.  I prefer my chocolates with pecans and/or caramel. 
7. Who was your favorite cartoon character when you were a child?
Mighty Mouse.  Here he comes to save the day!  Mighty Mouse is on his way!

8. Insert your own random thought here.
We had more severe storms Tuesday evening … and thankfully once again we were spared any major damage in our area.  We had a good amount of hail, but it wasn’t too big … slightly more than pea-sized.  Some areas on the Missouri side of the river reported baseball-sized hail.  DD reported grape-sized hail at her house.  A tornado was reported to have touched down west of the town where my dad lives; thankfully he lives on the east side of town and didn’t have any damage.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

The things we do for love

Let me make it clear up front … I am not a shopper.  Internet shopping was created just for me … find what I like, order it and be done with it … all from the comfort of my home.  If I do have to get out and actually go to a store, I have a list, I know what I want, I go, find it and buy it … and then I’m done. 

Yet last night I spent 4 hours going from store to store, shopping for Easter gifts for the Ts.  When DD was little, I always got her something special for Easter.  So of course, I have to do the same for the Ts, right?  I know that DD is trying to declutter (she’s been working on that for a while now … and moving at the end of this month has given her additional incentive!), so I wanted to get the Ts something that they’d like, something that wouldn’t just add to the clutter that abounds when you’ve got 6 people in a house.  With some input from DD, I’m going to get them pillow pets.  Of course, each T has an animal that they want … and as popular and widely available as these pillow pets are, it wasn’t easy finding THE 4 pets that the Ts wanted.    I found 3 of the requested pets … but not the one that T#1 wanted.  After I got home, I spent a couple of hours of searching online, I found the last pillow pet.  Whew! 

DH seems to be doing a little better, although I’m not sure if he’s ready to admit that just yet.  I wouldn’t call him a hypochondriac, but he does have a tendency to dramatize his aches and pains and illnesses (I say that with love!).  

Today is going to be a rainy day … we already had a good bit of rain overnight and again this morning.  Somehow it’s a little easier to go in to work when it’s rainy outside. 

Monday, April 18, 2011

This weekend I …

  • got a lot of sewing done … as I said here, I finished the blocks for T#4’s big girl quilt.  I’m now putting the blocks together into 7 rows of 6 blocks and have 3 of the rows sewn; when I have all 7 rows finished, I’ll sew the rows together to create the top. 
  • played hooky from church … DH was feeling too puny to go, and I chose to stay home and pamper him.  I fixed him waffles for breakfast as a treat.

  • got some yardwork done … I spread some mulch in the landscaping (I need another 6+ bags to finish the job).  Because the yard needs to be mowed and because DH is still feeling mighty puny, I offered to mow for him.  Mind you now, I’ve mowed this yard plenty of times in summers past.  But I must have let myself get waaaaay out of shape over the winter because I called it quits after mowing just the front.  Whew!  I’d been contemplating getting back to working out at the gym … and this has confirmed that I need to get myself back into shape!

  • got some T-time … the two littlest Ts spent the afternoon with Nana and Papa.  T#3 is still such a hoot, and T#4 is not such a baby any more.
What did you do this weekend?

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Saturday Morning Randomness

I was doing the happy dance last night … I finished the last quilt block on T#4’s big girl quilt.
Not without a little drama … first of all, in spite of really slowing down and being extra careful to make those center star blocks accurately, I still have more tips lopped off than not.  <sigh>  Secondly, I wanted the pinks to be the focal fabric … and while they’re pinker than what shows up in the photo, the brown still overpowers the pink.  And finally, when I cut the yardage to create the strips that are sewn together to create the block, I counted and had 42 sets of strips.  When I got down to about 15 sets left to be pieced, I counted and discovered that I would end up 1 set short.  I thought perhaps I miscounted originally and decided to piece as long as I could and cut when I got done to 2-3 sets left (in hopes that I was miscounting then and would end up with the correct number of sets).  Yesterday I reached the point where there were only 2-3 strip sets left, and yep, I was 1 set short.  So I got out the leftover fabrics and pieced together the fabrics to create a complete strip set.  After I had finished creating that last strip set and was folding up the remnants to set them aside, I encountered the missing 12 strips!    I can’t imagine how in the world they got over in with the leftover fabrics … and why I didn’t find them when I pulled out the fabrics to cut the strips.   All that time I spent cutting those fabrics and piecing them together to create strips could have been spent piecing together another block. 

DH has come down with what I had.     He spent almost all day in bed yesterday and is likely to spend a good part of today there. 

Our April Showers got ramped up a little yesterday … tornado warnings, wall clouds, strong winds, hail, heavy rains.  Can you say “time to head to the basement”?  Thankfully there was no significant damage reported anywhere.

With rain in the forecast, it looks like today might be a lazy kind of day … a perfect day to spend in the sewing room.  Hope your Saturday is a perfect one, too.

Friday, April 15, 2011

Flashback Friday–Garden Edition

It’s been a long time since I participated in Flashback Friday … it’s about time I joined in the Friday Fun!  If you’d like to join in or view others’ answers, just click on the button above.

He who plants a seed beneath the sod and waits to see a plant, believes in God.

Do you have any memories of gardens from your growing-up years? Did your parents have a flower garden?
My mom always planted annuals.  Her favorites were portulacas

and salvias

Her favorite perennials were irises

and sweet peas (the mere sight of which always reminds me of my mom)

Was landscaping important to them?
No, not really.  I don’t remember anyone else in the neighborhood having anything special in the way of landscaping; I’m not sure that landscaping was as popular/important back in the day as it is now.  I recall we had a couple of yews planted in front of the house and several trees in the yard … and that was the extent of the landscaping.

Did they take care of the yard themselves or have someone else do it?
Yes, my dad always mowed the lawn, except when we lived in the country and had a riding mower.  My sister K and I would fight over who got to ride (or drive as we would say) the mower.  My dad, at 88, still mows his own lawn (although he does use a riding mower now, up until about a year ago he pushed a mower). 

What about a vegetable garden? Did your family have one and was it big or small? Any fruit trees?
We usually had a garden … tomatoes, onions, radishes and leaf lettuce.  We never had any fruit trees.  

Did your mom (or anyone) "put up" (as we say in the South) or can the bounty from a garden?
No, we generally planted what we could eat ourselves … there wasn’t anything left over to can or freeze.

What involvement did you and any siblings have in planting? Was growing things encouraged, discouraged, or treated with ambivalence?
We girls helped by weeding and picking whatever was fresh. 

What is your attitude, ability and involvement in gardening today?
I love working in the yard, but my preferences tend toward working with landscaping.  We haven’t had a vegetable garden since we got our dogs (who helped themselves to the tomatoes growing on the plants), although we did try (unsuccessfully) to grow some topsy turvy tomato plants last summer.
To be honest, we’ve found it easier to buy what and as much/as little as we like at the local farmer’s market or the local produce stand.  Given the trouble our friends/neighbors have had with rabbits in their gardens, I think we’ll continue to shop the farmer’s market and produce stand. 

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Thankful Thursday

Once again, I’m taking advantage of this opportunity to be intentionally thankful.  A couple of weeks ago, I was a little reluctant to click on publish because my Thankful Thursday post didn’t focus on anything particularly deep or profound.  But I was reminded of 1st Thessalonians 5:18: give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.  He’s not telling me to give thanks for just the spiritually significant events in my life … He’s instructing me to give thanks for everything … even the insignificant things.  I’ve found that when I have an attitude of gratitude, I see God working and feel His presence in a way that I don’t think I would otherwise.

A few things I’m thankful for today:
  • co-workers who are patient and helpful as I learn some new duties
  • my sweet hubby who never complains when I try a new recipe … even when that recipe isn’t one worth keeping
  • clean sheets on the bed
  • warm breezes blowing through open windows
  • opportunities to serve at church … officially and unofficially
  • God’s grace

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Welcome back, sunshine!

Ah, it’s going to be a terrific Tuesday today! 
The sun is shining, I hear the birds chirping, it’s going to be warm this afternoon … a wonderful day.  And I’ve got the day off to enjoy it all!

Yesterday afternoon, I got a phone call from DD inviting me to join her for some shopping after I got off work.  Of course I said YES!  We hit Old Navy and Kohl’s and got Easter outfits for all 6 in her family.  We had dinner at Bull and Bear, our favorite place for hot wings.  Mmmmmm, yummy!  We wrapped the evening up looking at curtain/bedding/paint possibilities for their new house.
It was a wonderful chance just to spend some time with DD and to knock off a couple of things on her “to-do” list.

Today my agenda includes getting DH to plant those two replacement azaleas and to spread some mulch out.
While we wait for it to warm up a little more, I’ll get some work in on the jigsaw puzzle we’re in the middle of and finish the last of the book I’m reading.  I ordered the sequel from the library, and it’s in now.  I’m looking forward to a great day … hope you are, too!

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Weekend wrap-up

Another weekend is drawing to a close … and as always too soon.  It was a weekend that got off to a rough start but a weekend that finished well.

This weekend I …
  • spent Friday feeling too miserable to do little more than read and work a jigsaw puzzle 
  • flung open the windows on Saturday and enjoyed the fresh, warm air blowing in
  • spent Saturday evening at DD’s watching the Ts … by then I was actually starting to feel even better; unfortunately, the bronchitis/sinusitis/crud has hit them even harder than it did me
  • spent Sunday morning with the toddlers … during Sunday School and worship (now, that was a test of how well I’m feeling! ha!) 
  • attended my friend/neighbor’s daughter’s baby shower
  • walked around the neighborhood, catching up with some of my neighbors who I hadn’t seen since last fall
  • sat out on the deck with DH until it began to get dark

Tomorrow I get back into a normal routine … it looks to be a good week coming up.  This coming week is student worker appreciation week, so we’re going to have donuts and bagels for breakfast at work tomorrow to honor our student workers.  Works for me!    And if that isn’t enough, we’re going to honor them a little more with lunch on Thursday (pulled pork and all the sides).  Tuesday night is my quilt guild meeting.  Other than that, I don’t have a lot on my plate.  If the weather is nice, I hope to get some yard work done; if not, I hope to get some more work done on T#4’s big girl quilt … unless a better offer comes in!  ha!  Yep, a good week. 

Saturday, April 9, 2011

Welcome to the Weekend

The storms I forecast here arrived overnight, but I expect more tomorrow night (upper 80’s the next two days with a cold front moving in tomorrow night = storms).

Each morning over the last 2-3 days, I’ve felt a little better, and although I’m a good ways from being back to 100%, at least I’m making improvement.  What’s really strange with this bronchitis is that I’ve got joint pain (shoulder, hands, feet). 

I’d really like to get out and work in the yard.  DH picked up the replacement plant for one of my azaleas that didn’t survive last summer … I’m anxious to get it planted.  The other isn’t in stock this spring, so I’d like to get to the nursery and find something else to plant.  I’m also anxious to spread more mulch as well as expand some of the landscaping along the east side of the house.  I love working out in the yard … getting my hands in the soil, soaking up the warm sunshine, enjoying the beautiful results.

Instead I’ll take it easy today … do some reading and work on the puzzle we’ve got going (it’s turning out to be quite a toughie!). 

Tomorrow I have church (I’m in the toddler nursery again) followed by a baby shower for my friend/neighbor Lois … her daughter is having Lois’ first grandchild.  What an exciting time for them!

Even though it’s not a terribly exciting weekend, it’s going to be a good one.  Hope yours is a good one, too.

Friday, April 8, 2011

Can it be spring?

Almost all my plants have shown new life (with the exception of a couple of azaleas which were dead before the first freeze last year).  DH has mowed the lawn 3 times already.  It got into the mid 80’s today (which means that we’ll be having major storms soon).  DH is out on the deck, grilling pork steaks for dinner. 

Now if I could just get rid of this miserable case of bronchitis, I could thoroughly enjoy the return of spring. 

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Wednesday Hodgepodge

Joyce has come up with some diverse questions this week … I don’t know where she gets these questions, but I’m glad that she does.  As always, if you would like to play along or see how everyone else has answered these questions, just click on the button above.
1. National Read a Road Map Day falls on April 5th. Would people say you have a good sense of direction? Do you rely on a GPS when you drive somewhere new? When was the last time you used a map?
I think I have a good sense of direction.  I’ve always been the map reader, even when growing up (we didn’t take many family trips, but when we did, I was the one assigned to read the map and direct my dad).  We have a GPS … DH wanted one and I thought it would just be an expensive toy.  I have to tell you that I was wrong … it’s been extremely helpful. 
We use it whenever we’re on the road.  But I find myself still following along on our atlas … I’ve made notes in the margins (like where the Chick Fil A restaurants are – ha!), and I’ve used the atlas to direct DH (the time we got off I-75 to avoid a huge backup heading out of Atlanta)
2. What's your favorite cookbook?
The cookbook that I use the most is my Betty Crocker cookie cookbook.  I bought it in the early 1970’s.
But for the most part, I use the internet for recipes rather than a cookbook.  I’ve found a lot of my favorite recipes at Allrecipes, but I’ve had good luck with Food Network and Cooking Light.
3. What painting would you like to "walk into" and experience? Why?
My favorite style of art is impressionism, and my favorite artist is Mary Cassatt.  I’d love to “walk into” this painting … and why not, it looks like a lovely day at the beach, and what fun it would be to play in the sand with those 2 little girls.
4. What annoys you more- misspellings or mispronunciations?
Misspellings.  I have to confess that I’m a bit of a grammaticaster, so misspellings seem to catch my eye.  Something else that bugs me is the incorrect use of the apostrophe, particularly the use of “it’s” for “its”, “your” for “you’re”. 
5. What is something your mother or father considered important?
Hard work.   
6. Do you like or dislike schedules?
I like schedules, but I’m not so rigid that I’m upset if the schedule is tossed out or revised.  
7. Let's have some fun with National Poetry Month (that would be April)...write your own ending to this poem-
"Roses are Red
Violets are blue..."
…I’m ready for spring!
How about you?
Incidentally if you'd like to read the history behind that little ditty you'll find it here.
8. Insert your own random thought in this space.
Several of you wondered what I chose to do on Tuesday … I did some piecing of blocks for T#4’s big girl quilt and started the puzzle.  I might have worked outside, too, but the ground is still too wet from the rain we had Sunday night/Monday morning. 

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Freedom Tuesday

I’ve got today off from work, and I have to say that having a nice block of time ahead of me to do whatever I’d like to do is feeling pretty luxurious. 

I had thought about getting out into the yard … I’ve got a couple of azaleas that need to be replaced. 

Or I could find something to do inside.  A few days ago, I brought up from the basement a few puzzles for DD to work … and a couple of new ones that DH & I haven’t worked.  They’re sitting on the side table, calling my name. 

Or I could get back to work on T#4’s big girl quilt.  I haven’t had time to be able to work on it for three weeks now … and I’ve been missing it.

Or I could quit blogging about how to use this block of time and get up and actually use it! 

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Weekend wrap-up

It’s hard to believe that it’s Sunday already.  It’s been a very busy weekend, full of fun activities and time with people I love.   

Friday night, I spent the evening at DD’s, watching the Ts while Mama & Daddy got an unexpected opportunity to go to the hockey game. 

Saturday morning, I went shop hopping at the area quilt shops with my friend (neighbor) Lois.  I was looking for some pink for binding for T#4’s big girl quilt; I had planned to bind it in one of the brown fabrics, but since the pinks (which were to have been the dominant color) pale in comparison to the browns, I want to bind it in a pink in hopes of giving the pinks a little more “presence”.

Saturday evening, DH & I spent the evening at DD’s; we had carry out BBQ from Captain Hog’s (yummy!) and a nice visit. 

Sunday morning, I was in Sunday School and then spent the worship hour in the toddler nursery. 

Sunday afternoon, I got caught up on laundry, did some tidying up around the house, worked outside in the yard (I’d forgotten how relaxing and enjoyable it is to work out in the yard), enjoyed having windows open (this is the first time it’s gotten warm enough for me to be comfortable in short sleeves) while watching the Cardinals and Blues win their games. 

Sunday evening, I’m going to relax … a wonderful ending to a wonderful weekend!

Friday, April 1, 2011

It’s Friday

And that means that the weekend is near!  Who doesn’t look forward to the weekend … even those of us who are retired still find ourselves looking forward to the weekend!
Since Kim suggested stealing copying her A to Z theme today, I’ve decided to take her up on that!
A. Age: 60

B. Bed size: Queen … we bought our mattress and frame just a few years ago when we were living at our previous house (the MBR was barely big enough for a queen-sized bed), so it’s too early to replace it, but when we do, it’ll be with a KING sized bed!

C. Chore you dislike: Cleaning the bathroom.

D. Dogs: Love almost all dogs, but if we get another one, it’ll definitely be a Golden Retriever.

E. Essential start to your day: checking e-mail/facebook/blog reader.  Even though I get up plenty early even though I’m retired, I’m still not a morning person and move slowly, so I waste spend time on the computer while I “wake up.”

F. Favorite color: blue.

G. Gold or silver: Gold – like Kim, I own nothing silver.

H. Height: 5′ 2”

I. Instruments you play(ed): Nothing.
J. Job title: Nana
K. Kids: DD
L. Live for ______: Family … and our trips.
M. Most embarrassing moment: I’m drawing a blank, although I know I’ve embarrassed myself more times than I could possibly count.  Maybe this means that I’ve successfully repressed those memories.  ha!
N. Nicknames: Smargo (I can’t even remember how this started – my sister started that one), Helen.
O. Overnight hospital stays: tonsillectomy as a child, c-sections in the 70’s, gall bladder removal in the 90’s.
P. Pet peeves: People who dawdle through traffic lights so not all of us can get through on a green.
Q. Quote from a movie: I remember every detail, the Germans wore gray, you wore blue (Casablanca)
R. Road Trip: Yes … we both hate flying.  And when driving, we can pack as much as we want/need, stop when we want/need, have transportation at our destination.  No baggage charges.
S. Siblings: I have two younger sisters, one a year and half younger and one eight years younger.
T. Time you wake up: Usually at 6:30am.
U. University attended: SIU Edwardsville
V. Vegetables: Green beans.
W. What makes you run late: One last trip to the bathroom.
X. X-rays you’ve had: Enough.  Pneumonia as a child, all my dental x-rays, an x-ray when pregnant (they were afraid that the baby would be too big for a vaginal delivery - no ultrasound back in those days – they went with a vaginal delivery only to have to switch to an emergency c-section; thankfully with DD we did a planned c-section –> much easier recovery!), x-rays for back pain, and probably a few more that I can’t remember.
Y. Yummy food you make: DH likes my chicken picatta, I like my chicken marsala, my monster cookies are always a hit, and I get good “reviews” on my carrot cake.
Z. Zoo animal favorites: Penguins.

Have a wonderful weekend!