Sunday, June 17, 2018

Happy Father's Day! Quilting and Finishes

Hello Everyone,

and Happy Father's Day to all you Father's out there, even those Father's of furbabies!  What a wonderful day it is for you!  Although my Dad isn't here on earth, I remember all the Happy Father's Days we had in the past and all the cards I made for him over the years growing up.  It was always a special day at our home.  Missing you, Dad, until we meet again, love you!!

Much to blog about this time around.  I know, I'm a little late, but time just flies by now that I'm re-retired.  Lol!!  So, here's what I've been up to lately.

Last post was my birthday post.  Since that time, Bernie and I have celebrated our 41st wedding anniversary.  Gosh, time is flying by!!  I received the most beautiful of flower arrangements from him.  Here is a pic for those that aren't on Facebook and didn't get to see them.

These were from a new flower shop in Linesville and from what I have seen of their flowers, they make the most beautiful arrangements for a small town florist.  This arrangement consisted of a purple gladiola with white roses and daisies, both lavender spider mum and regular mums, deep crimson carnations and pink with reddish tipped carnations.  The best part is that I received them the day before our anniversary which was on Saturday, and some of the flowers are still beautiful almost 10 days later today. 














Besides working on lamps, which I am now caught up on, but not for long as Bernie is busy making more as I type this, I began a new journal.  Bryan and Jess got me a journal entitled "Big Ideas" for my birthday.

 Guess everyone pretty much knows that I have had many Big Ideas over the years.  I'm always dreaming, and thinking of new things I want to do or try.  Bernie always says that he can tell when I'm deep in thought just by looking at me.  It's true, most nights I have trouble shutting down this brain of mine.  Does anyone else have that problem?  Anyway, I'm using the book to jot down my "Big, and 'Bright', Ideas!" as well as things I need to finish or accomplish.  I have many UFO's, (unfinished objects) that I want to record my completions.  Being a Gemini, I tend to flit from project to project, never staying on course to complete something, so I'm trying to better myself in that respect.  So, after writing down about 10 things that need to be finished, I managed to take care of two of those this past week.  This is a huge accomplishment for me and I'm proud of myself!!

Here they are:

First, my friend, Eileen, sent me a wonderful quilt puzzle for my birthday.  I decided that it would look lovely in my sewing area, so I got Bernie to find me some cardboard and I began working on it last Sunday.  This puzzle is a 1,000 piece puzzle and it is 27" x 35".  Not a small puzzle at all.  I work on puzzles a little at a time.  My rule is if I can't place 5 pieces within 5 minutes or so, then I need to walk away.  I can come back 10 minutes or when I walk by it again and place another 10 pieces or so, before I can't place another piece and go do something else. I've never sat for hours doing a puzzle, I get up, walk away, and come back.  Doing it in this fashion, I had this puzzle completed by Wednesday night!  I had so much fun doing this puzzle.  Thank you, Eileen, love ya!!  I already have  Mod Podged it together on the front and the back is now drying.  I'll have this hung up this week!

Here it is completed. 







My next finish is something that I had been working on for quite a while.  I had this quilt top put all together, but tried to layer it with batting and the backing fabric here at home, but couldn't do it, not enough room even after moving the dining room table and trying to lay it out between the dining room and living room.  I took it to the Sr. Ctr two Wednesday's ago, the ladies and I had to use six tables put together to layer it up and after pinning it, I brought it back home.  I worked on quilting it from June 7 until June 15 off and on bound and determined it would be my second finish for the week and besides it was to be our Spring-Summer Quilt for our bedroom. I did get it done in the Spring, so I met my goal, not only that, but with left over material that I already had sewn strips together, I made two pillows and a small tier curtain for our window.  I like to name my large quilts, so here is finish #2 for the week, "Tropical Island Paradise"!!






   

Since I've shared my finished objects with you, I think I'll end this blog post for today.  I will have much more to blog about in the coming weeks, gosh!  I love this warm weather, so nice to be outside enjoying it though!  I hope you are enjoying your Spring as well.  Take care everyone! Until next time.....................

Hugs,
Debbie


Wednesday, May 30, 2018

Happy Birthday to Me Today and Happy Anniversary To Me Tomorrow!

Hello everyone!

Yep, as the post title states, Happy Birthday to me!!  Today marks the 62nd anniversary of my birth!  or as some would put it, my Social Security Birthday!!  I am now eligible to collect SS!!

Today has been a beautiful day here in NW PA!!  The sun is shining gloriously, with a slight breeze and it is 95 degrees!  Ouch!!  Almost too hot to go outside.  The downside of going outside for me though is the pollen/grass count is extremely high and my allergies are acting up terribly today and has so all weekend long.

Bryan and Jess came for a visit to celebrate my birthday on Sunday!  Bernie grilled out some delicious T-bone steaks, cooked to perfection I might add!!  Fresh green beans, corn-on-the-cob, and homemade potato salad.  Also, one of the best birthday cakes I've tasted and fudge-swirl ice cream!!
I had a wonderful day on Sunday.

No plans for tonight though, just chillin with Bernie and Macy.

The weather here has been really nice lately!  Temperatures perfect, except for the past two days with extremely hot days.

In the garden, my lilacs are long gone, but my azaleas are now blooming.  Also, the iris is up a blooming finally.  After many years of no activity, they have finally come alive and how pretty they are.

Here is my Columbine.  I just love the purple color, so pretty.

I ended up purchasing some flower baskets instead of planting in pots which didn't turn out so well last year.  These are the baskets!  I have something going on with purples this year.


Just love the colors in this basket.  I bought three all the same just about.

Next is the wildlife, we've had some deer at the lick this past week and we've been birdwatching too!  This Indigo Bunting stopped by a few days to eat.  We don't see these often enough and they are just beautiful blue in color.


Had to stick the camera out the sliding glass door onto the deck for this shot before she saw me and ran away.

Then there was this chippy!  These are everywhere this year.  Digging holes all over the place.

and the finches!  Always so beautiful in yellow.  I purchased a sock of seeds at Dollar General last week and hung it up because it said it attracted finches and buntings and since I'm trying to keep that Indigo bunting here, I hung it up and here we have so many finches this year unlike years past.  There were five of them on the sock of seeds at once.  Just beautiful!!

I had good intentions of completing this blog post on my birthday which is now the day after my birthday, but I'll go with it anyway and since it is now May 30th, I'll have to say Happy Anniversary of my Retirement from the USPS Today!

Gosh!!  It's been two years already since I officially retired from the Postal Service.  Time sure does fly by now.  

So, what am I up to today!  Trying to get over these allergies for sure is #1, I was told to double up on the Zyrtec!  Seems that our pollen count is a tad better today than yesterday, but I'm staying in just the same.  Didn't go to quilting today either.  Haven't worked on any quilting either.  Today was a lamp working day.  I got to work on five lamps today so that was a good day.  Hopefully, next post will have some quilting in it.

I just want to thank everyone for the birthday wishes yesterday, the cards, the presents, the phone calls, it was a great day!  Thanks again.  Until next week, enjoy the remainder of this week and talk to you again soon!

Hugs,
Debbie


Monday, May 14, 2018

Almost Three Months later and yes......things have changed!!!

Hello everyone,  February 26 seems like a long-time ago and that is when my last post was.  Things have certainly changed since that time.  Let's see if I can catch you up!!

First of all, I hope that everyone had a very Happy Mother's Day!!

On Feb 13, I began running the Senior Center, on my own, and did so until April 9th.  Next came that I had to train the new person that began that day.  Did that for a month and then knew it was time to go.  If you can imagine someone talking more than me, ha ha, well this gal had me beat by a long shot!!  She never shut up!!  Literally!!!!  She knew everyone, everything, connections for this and that and was just annoying to the max!!  And cell phone usage!!  When did work ethic become a thing of the past.  Used to be that if you had a job, and were being paid, you worked, not text on your cellphone all the time.  So with that being said, I went in on May 9th, after talking with my higher up boss early that morning telling her today was it, I was quitting, I went to work to inform the new gal.  Once there, I was told to call the high up boss again and well, they got me to stay out that week, and then begged me to give them another week to find someone and so I could handle the Mother's Day Lunch on May 10th.  So, I officially RE-RETIRED, last Friday, May 11th and I couldn't be happier and did they hire anyone yet???  Nope!!!    I told Bernie that if I every get the silly idea of working again to " hit me up along side my head."  For anyone else who might be retiring and then get that notion to return to the work force, I would tell you to forget it and enjoy your first Retirement!!

I'm now getting ready for the upcoming craft shows in Aug and October and am busily finishing up the lamps that Bernie has made thus far.  I just got finished working on some a few minutes ago.  Now I am getting ready to make dinner and take Macy to the groomer.  She really needs a haircut!  Here is the after photo!  So much better and she's decked out for Memorial Day with her new scarf!!



Spring has finally sprung here.  It actually was snowing here on April 28th!!  My gosh!!!  This was incredible!  I am so sick and tired of the cold and snow!!  Finally, we are in the 60's and 70's and it is wonderful.  The flowers are all confused!  My lilacs began to bloom before this last snow, and now they are hardly blooming at all.  I have only three shoots of purple and the white bush did a little better on the top.  Guess there is always next year!!

The azaleas which usually bloom before the lilacs are just now budding, so I still have those to look forward to and the day lilies and hostas are now up and looking good.  I still have a lot of work once the rain quits getting the leaves out of all the front bushes including the azaleas.



I am back to quilting at the center and don't have anything to show as yet.  I'm working a couple tree skirts there.  I still haven't finished the brightly-colored purple/green/blue quilt.  The top is done and I just have to layer it all and then take it to my machine to finish it up.  That is on my short-list to get done.  It's too big for me to take to the center to work on.

I still have the Civil War Reproduction Quilt to get a border on and then finish that up as well.  Hope to have that one finished in the not too distant future.

Once these two big quilts are done then I'm going to focus on some tablerunners that I can sell at the August show or perhaps on our lamp website.

Bryan has been working feverishly on this website for us over the past several months and we are just about ready to launch the site.  If you haven't signed up for an email to be sent to you when we launch you can do so by clicking here   www.hearthwoodlamps.com.  I will be having other things on the website as well such as items to compliment our lamps.

So, I guess that is enough for this post, but I wanted you to know I'm back and will be posting more regularly again!

Thanks for sticking with me!

Hugs,
Debbie

Monday, February 26, 2018

February, Almost a Thing of the Past!!

Hello everyone,

It's been about 20 days since my last post, guess the weekly post thing isn't working quite as well as I've planned.  I don't know how these bloggers that post everyday do it, even with pre-planning their posts!!  Guess their posts aren't quite as lengthy as mine, and they probably don't have much to talk about either doing them daily.  So, it is best to say that mine has become twice a month, which is plenty.

I'm still working on the quilt I showed you from last post.  It is a slow process due to time constraints.
This one if you recall.  I did measure out what I need for bordering to make it a true king-size.  So, I'll be adding 9" overall and perhaps a bit more at the pillow side as I like to tuck a bit more quilt under the pillows, then you have enough when you are in bed to pull it over your head!!

I have begun sewing strips together and am using some of the same fabric that you see throughout the quilt.  It is fabric that I had additional yardage available for.  So, I guess slow progress is better than no progress.

I did win two tickets to the theater two weeks ago!  I entered an on-line contest on Facebook to win two tickets to see "The Great Gatsby" at Allegheny College Campus.  The performers were a part of the Meadville Community Theatre group.  I haven't been to a play since leaving Pittsburgh.  I asked my neighbor, Donna, to go with me and she accepted.  We went to the matinee performance on Sunday, and she told me she had never been to a play.  I was hoping that she liked it and it ended up being  a superb performance, in my opinion.  The lead characters of Gatsby and Daisy were both students from Allegheny and they were fantastic!  This theater was a very small one with probably only 40-50 seats and the building was probably built in the 1800's or early 1900s.  We took seats down front not knowing that our knees would literally be hitting the stage and all that we would be able to see would be the performers kneecaps!!  Ha Ha!!  Donna went back out to the ticket booth and we were able to move to the second from the last row and could see perfectly there.  We had a great time, and we both enjoyed the play very much.  We may go back for some others now that we know it's even there and how entertaining it was.  We had a great time!!!



I have been working at the senior center a lot lately.  Actually, I am Acting Director as of right now until they can hire a full-time director.  I'm not really thrilled about it, as I'm now working 7 hours a day and have to do things already scheduled for the month of March which is way too much in my opinion.  The former Director scheduled too many activities in March and we have nothing scheduled in April.  Wouldn't it have been better to spread them out a bit, just sayin............................... !!!  I really didn't like my part-time schedule as I was hoping to get them to cut back the hours so I could at least have a day or two off each week.  So, I'll just wait and see what happens!  I did have my eye on some end tables and coffee table that I'd like to get while I'm working!  Ha Ha!!! 

I do have today off as I have some routine doctor appts that were previously scheduled.  I might even have time to go to the grocery store!!  Haven't been there in more than a month!!  Meeting my clerk from Andover for lunch as well today!! 

Well, guess I'll get ready to head out on this sunny morning!  The sky is blue as can be without clouds and we are to go into the upper 40's today and into the 50's the next two days!!  I'm hoping that spring is coming, I'm hearing more and more birds each morning!!

So everyone take care, spring is in the air!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Hugs,
Debbie


Wednesday, February 7, 2018

It's Still Winter Thanks to Punxutawney Phil!!

Hi Everyone,

That darn groundhog saw his shadow and now today Liam has come visiting, hoping he doesn't stay too, too long.  Here is what it looks like outside right now.....

 This is a pic out the front door, I stuck my head out to shoot this.  We have about 5" or so on the ground right now and it is coming down hard and steady.
 You can see the depth of the snow up against the well outside.  Actually looks like it could be more than 5" already.
But with all this snow is beauty, the pine trees along the side of the house are so pretty, my neighbor across the streets pool, not so much!!    Might be able to ice skate on top of it!!

So, with all this you might think that I might be sad.......................
But, I'm not!!!  Actually,



I just can't believe that my "boss" called me to tell me that I didn't need to come to work due to the snowstorm Liam.  REALLY!!  So you're telling someone that worked for the USPS, who lived for 30 years by the motto,  " Neither snow, nor rain, nor heat, nor gloom of night stays these couriers from the swift completion of their appointed rounds" to stay home because we are getting 3-5".  Just ludicrous!  But, I'm so excited because................................

I haven't quilted in a few months!!  Time to take the cover off that machine of mine and get busy!!!
I lit the pellet stove in the basement, so it will be nice and toasty down there and what am I going to work on............................  well, I have this UFO, (Unfinished Object) that I want to have done by spring, remember this one?????

 Yes, this is a Trip Around the World in bright spring, summer type fabrics.  This is a King Size Quilt.
I haven't measured it all out yet because I still need to add 9" worth of borders around the entire quilt. This is what I hope to accomplish today.  I have my Warm n Natural King Size batting ready to go, but I'm undecided on what backing to use.  If I can have that all figured out and put the layers together, the next time I get a day off or a weekend to just quilt, I can quilt it all, bind it and be ready for the bed. 

I have one other UFO, a wall hanging that just needs to be quilted and bound and it's ready for the craft show in the late summer.  Then I'm going to begin on making some quilted tree skirts, these were so much fun and easy to make that I can't resist making more of them for gifts and sale at the Pymatuning Festival in early August.

So that is what my day looks like, and I'll be making a good dinner tonight, some breaded pork chops and buttered noodles and a veggie.  I made a huge pot of homemade chicken noodle soup on Sunday and we've been eating that everyday, but it's oh, so good on these cold, snowy days.  Maybe we will start off with a cup of that before the dinner.  Sounds like a plan.

Macy Kate had her teeth cleaned and had to have eight teeth removed.  She is all well now again and able to eat her hard food and play with her toys.  She so missed her toys for two weeks while she healed.  So, I now have a toothbrush and chicken flavored toothpaste to brush her teeth.  Yeah!!  How's that going to work out????  Stay tuned........

Hope everyone is well and hopefully we will get spring earlier than 6 weeks!!

Hugs,

Debbie

Saturday, January 20, 2018

Everyone Warm??????

Hi Everyone,

Wow, have we been having a cold blast here in NW PA!!!  Crazy below zero wind chills most mornings when we awake and usually only in the single digits.  Snow, Snow, and more Snow!  Just last week there was a warm up and Meadville, near Bernie's work, flooded.  I have some pics that we took of what is called French Creek.  It was 2.5' above flood stage.  The cold came back with a vengeance and now we are in the single digits again and it snowed again.  I guess we have about 5' of snow, I quilt measuring!  Too, Too depressing!!

Here are some pics of the ice jams on French Creek.

 You can see the businesses right their on the creek.  Bernie works back in there a bit were the creek bends to the left.

Look at all that ice jammed up on the land, you can see the yellow road sign in the top distance.

Wow!  that was extreme!  Bad thing is that it is supposed to get up into the 40's this weekend and some rain on Sunday.  Will that mean more flooding for this area?  Hope not!!!

Still working at the center.  On my way there now so I'll have to finish this up when I get home later on today.  Until then....................

Well, it is actually Saturday Morning now!!  Never did get back to this, but the sun is shining, but it is cold!  Today, the weather has cooperated and our Christmas Celebration will be happening today! 

At the center the past few weeks we worked on some blocks for the Ventura Quilting Group in CA.  They reached out to all quilters to prepare a certain block in a certain size and then send to them and they will incorporate them into quilts for the fire victims in California who lost their homes and belongings!  We made quite a few, here are a few pics of some. 




 As you can see the left side of the square are dark materials.  It's interesting how many ways you can put these blocks together to get a totally different look.  I think I may be trying one of these in the future for our home. I made this one at home to take to the center to show them what we were looking for and I also made the one below.  You can see the difference in the darks and lights. 

I also did this one above.  The others were done by some of the seniors who I don't believe actually grasped the concept of what was needed, but that's OK, I'm sending them anyway and hopefully they can appreciated the work that these 80 year old's put into their blocks.

I wanted to mention to everyone that I lost a reader to my blog on Dec. 13th.  She called me once just to tell me how much she enjoyed reading my blog and that she even shared it with her brother.  She was our first cousin and her name was Merle.  She lived in eastern PA most of her married life, so I didn't always get to see her, but we talked often.  She was only 73 and never sick a day-in-her life, never in a hospital, until this illness hit her.  When I was 16, she told me that when I got my driver's permit to call her.  The day I got it, I called her and that evening she was at our house with her Mach I, Royal Blue, Mustang, to take me out for the first time to drive.  What a thrill that was for me to drive a sporty looking car for the first time.  I will always remember that day.  I will miss our talks especially about football, and racing.  She will be missed!

So, everyone have a wonderful weekend!  Stay warm and THINK SPRING!!  Praying that that groundhog doesn't see his shadow on Feb. 2nd.

Hugs to you all!!

Debbie

Friday, January 5, 2018

Happy New Year!!!

Hello Everyone!

I'm back and I plan on blog posting once a week, hopefully on Thursday or Friday.  I've been behind, just saw my last posting was back before Thanksgiving.  Gosh, I missed wishing you all a Merry Christmas, but we are still in the Twelve Days of Christmas through tomorrow and in actuality, January 6th is Epiphany; therefore, the Wise Men haven't arrived in Bethlehem yet, nor has Jesus been baptized by John the Baptist, so Merry Christmas is still a viable salutation!

Weather here in NW PA has been cold, blustery, snowy, wintry, just plain old nasty!!  We have been in the single digits most days, oh wait!!  we had a day that was 22, a "tropical heatwave."  It is pretty  though, but the unfortunate thing is that we haven't gotten to spend our yearly Christmas gathering at our home with Bryan and Jess yet!  Last weekend was terrible driving and this weekend isn't looking much better.  So we maybe still celebrating Christmas for a long, long time until we get to gather.  This photo is taken out past our driveway looking down our road.  It's a Winter Wonderland!!
We are to get 1-3 more today, already got that and it is still snowing, 3-5 tonight and 1-3 again tomorrow.  Lucky for me I didn't have to work today.  We have about 10" or so on the ground right now!





So, I guess I should tell you all, if you don't already know, I am working at the Senior Center when I usually enjoy quilting.  Let's just say that I enjoy the work and leave it at that for now!  I am working 5-days a week, 5-hours a day.  Last week, I worked two full days as my boss lady took off.  They actually entrusted me to run the center for two days without supervision!  Oh my, I think most thought I couldn't handle it, but heck, if I can run three post offices, I'm sure I can handle a senior center.  Anyway, everything went well, I didn't burn the lunches, and I pulled off a New Years Party as well!  All was good!!  One of my first assignments was to decorate the Christmas Tree, so here it is.  I did it in blue and silver and several of the ladies asked if I was for hire!!  Ugh, NOooooo!



Since we had nothing to do on Christmas Eve Day!  We decided to make sugar cookies and make them fancy with the Royal Icing.  This was the first time Bernie and I tackled this and we made two batches.  I made a mental note, next year, make only one batch!!!  We had too many cookies to bake and decorate taking us seven hours to complete.  They did turn out really well and I'll be doing this again for Valentine's Day for sure.  We had fun doing it!





We did go to Pittsburgh on Christmas Day and visited Bryan and Jess for a bit before heading to Bernie's parents.  It was a little snowy start, but by the time we got half-way to the Burgh the roads were good.  We had a very nice time visiting with everyone.  Here is a picture of our tree in our living room with the new tree skirt underneath.  The village is a plastic canvas village that my Mom and I made many years ago and I still love putting it up.  The plastic church in the far left bottom corner is one that we had every year growing up.  I just always called it our Dad's Church as it winds up and plays Silent Night!  This Church is well over 60 years old.  Maybe Bill or Peggy could tell how long they remember it being under our Christmas Trees!  


Here is the completed tree skirt that I quilted.  I just love this and will be making more of these as I still put up more than one tree in our home.  We have a tree in each of the bedrooms, and one in the office, and a small one in the kitchen.  So I need many, in different sizes for sure.

So, I will leave you with this pic of me that Bernie took when we were opening up our gifts to one another and he got me this very pretty necklace, which I have already worn to work and had so many compliments on it!  Doesn't go very well with my "Meyer Family Christmas 2016" sweatshirt.

So wishing you and yours a Very Happy, Healthy, Prosperous and Blessed New Year!
Be back next week!!  Stay warm!!

Hugs,
Debbie