Saturday, March 31, 2012

Whew - I feel better!  Not great, but better.  I got a full 8 hours of sleep, and am (sort of) ready to face the day.  We traded rain for wind today - I think I'd rather have the rain.  The average wind speed is 17 mph, with gusts up to 35 mph so far, according to our weather station.  That's a lot of wind for us.  I wonder how many trees will go down, since the rain has soaked their roots and made the ground nice and soft?

Friday, March 30, 2012

It's Friday night, and I came home early from work with a cold!  Bummer!  I'm hoping to kick it quickly - I've got too many things to do to be sick!  I've got people coming tomorrow for a BBQ, and a play to go to tomorrow night, and I need to start getting stuff ready for my mini-vacation next week.  I'm taking Wednesday through Friday off and going to Susanville.  I'll be back for the next week, and then gone again for a week.  I sat on the couch for a few hours this afternoon sniffling and sneezing - that should be all the time I need to get over it, right??  Ralph offered to cook dinner tonight, and then swore that he forgot we were having pizza (I think that's the only reason he volunteered - he can cook pizza!)  I'm taking him up on it and pizza is in the oven now.

The DC/Baltimore trip is getting fleshed out a bit.  We are staying 3 days in Baltimore and 3 days in DC.  There is a National's game on Monday night in DC that we are going to to to fit in, as well as some major sightseeing.  Too much fun!  I'm getting excited already.

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Good thing I didn't plan out Sunday in fine detail, what plans I did have changed quickly.  I got a text in the morning from a friend that lives in Paradise - she was in town visiting her sister, could I stop by?  And bring my quilt?  Sure to both!  (Just give me a few minutes to make myself presentable - I was running behind a bit!)  I had a nice morning/afternoon visiting - the rest of my stuff just had to wait!  I did put in a few minutes on the quilt Sunday night - it needs a lot more than a few minutes!  I want to have the quilting done in time to take it to Mom's next week.  I think I'm going to need help with the binding, and if I have everything else done, maybe she can help with that.  (Hint, hint again, Mom!!)

We are rained in again today - it looks like a nice wet storm too.  I put on a skirt this morning, and I think I'm going to change to pants and boots!  The weather forecast looks a bit damp, cold and windy.  I do have an errand to run at lunch, so I will be out and about in it.  Yesterday, Alli had her appointment with her dermatologist, who was quite happy with Alli's skin.  It looks much better.  We need to continue with the medication for another couple of weeks, and then start conditioning her skin from the dryness the medication has caused.  She did notice what looks like a staph infection starting on her legs, so put her on antibiotic for that as well.

While we were waiting for the prescription to be filled, I ran by Joann's and picked up a larger rotary cutting mat, a rotary cutter and some fleece to make the baby afghan (maybe) out of.  One thing I forgot - a ruler.  I'm going back in today to pick that up, and then I can get started on that project.  I have two baby booties almost done - just a few finishing details, and that project will be done.  I would like to make a couple more pairs of booties while I have then yarn out.  Tonight is Scouts, so I may start on the 'leaves' for the baby afghan, since they don't take a lot of concentration, and I need a lot of them.

Sunday, March 25, 2012

The rain has final come to Redding.  I have missed it, but....I'm done now.  Yesterday, it started raining just as Alli and I left the house for our errands.  It was pouring when we got to Walmart (and Alli does NOT hurry in parking lots!) and pouring when we left.  It was pouring still when we got to the grocery store, and just raining when we came out.  It was pouring again when we got to K-mart, and raining when we came out (with 4 new pairs of pants for Alli) and still raining when we got to Hokema's and pouring when we left, and then it was raining when I had to unload the groceries from the car.  We were both a bit damp around the edges when we finished our errands.  I think I'm done with the rain.

The Celebration of Life of Aunt Inez was very nice yesterday.  Pat had Inez's old photo albums, and unlike most of us, Auntie had actually put names and places on most of the photos.  The first album started in 1933 - how fun!  I had no idea that Auntie was such a great huntress - she had quite a few photos of her deer - some slung over a horse.  That brought up a few 'camping stories' - a lot of fun to listen to.  There were quite a few pictures of Ralph's dad and his father, which I had never seen.    We were able to show AJ pictures of his grandfather and great-grand father together.  I think AJ's build (tall and thin) came from his grandfather as well as from Ralph's mother's (her brothers were all 6'6 - 6'8) and my side of the family.

Larry and Pat's granddaughter (Auntie's great granddaughter) Angela was there with her son (Auntie's Great-great grandson) - Talon turned 1 in January.  Such a sweetie!  Angela and Kevin announced their engagement, so we have a wedding in the family soon, and we found out that  Larry and Pat's grandson Danny is leaving this week for a job in Des Moines!  Good for him!  It will be odd not to have him there at our family gatherings, but it sounds like a wonderful adventure for him.

Some one that reads my blog (and shall remain nameless) commented via e-mail that I mentioned all sorts of things I was doing yesterday, but not what I was doing today (this was a not so subtle reminder that I needed to be going to church today!)  When I got up this morning, and wandered through the dark house to let the dogs out, I wondered to myself what WAS I going to do today?  When I turned the light on, I knew what it was - clean up this pigsty!  With me being gone part of the week and busy the rest of the week I was here, the house need some serious attention.  I also need to do the laundry (not even started yet, and usually I have a couple of loads done by this time on Sunday) pay bills, finish my taxes, and get things organized for the next week, and other assorted odds and ends (including setting rat traps in the garage - the rain has moved at least one inside!!!)  I also have some paperwork I need to get done for the scouts, balance the checkbooks (yuck!).  Somewhere in there, I need to fix breakfast, lunch and dinner.  Sunday is also my day to work on my quilt - I don't see that happening today, but....I'll try.

And - if I have the time - I have an order in for a couple of pairs of baby booties.  I need the booties by Easter (which is coming up fast) so I need to get them done.  I also have a plan building in the back of my head for a baby safari blanket.  I would like to do one for a co-worker, but the afghan itself takes me a few weeks to do, and then I have to make the tree and giraffes, etc. to put on it.  I don't have that much time!  I've been thinking about making the afghan itself out of fleece, and sewing the embellishments on.  I'm still thinking about it, but....time is ticking, so I need to get started if I'm going to do that.  I also got a new toy - a 'skip stitch' rotary blade.  It is designed to cut holes in fleece so you can crochet a border on it.  I want to try that too!!!  There just isn't enough time in the day anymore.  At least the next week should be calmer on the home front - I'm not going anywhere or doing anything but the normal scout meeting.  Yippee!

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Time for the weekend - time to slow down, and try to relax a little bit.  This week just flew by!I spent Tuesday and Wednesday in Sacramento for a conference.  I got home just in time to fix dinner Wednesday night!  By the time I unwound from the trip, unpacked, etc, it was a late night.  Thursday was a true whirlwind - a  'try to catch up' day at work, and they had been busy while I was gone , and we sere still shorthanded, and I had Alli's IEP meeting on Thursday afternoon.  I then had a nail appointment after work on Thursday, and then needed to bake a cheesecake when I got home (after I fixed dinner, of course) so it was another busy day/late night for me, and then Friday night, we had a Scout Council meeting after work.  I got in from work, started dinner, and went to that meeting, and got home at 9:00 or so.  I seriously need some 'down time'.  At least work was beginning to get under control by Friday afternoon.  It helped that I was able to be there the whole day, and not be running around dealing with rental cars and IEP meetings, etc.  Whew!

Alli's IEP went really well.  She will be staying at Anderson next year.  We had some good discussion between the school Psychologist, the teacher, the Adaptive PE Coach and the rep from Far Northern, and got some good ides for some things to do with Allison.  The PE Coach is going to try to get some swim time in for Alli - I didn't even know Anderson had a pool!    That is so cool!  She will get some PE time that will really give her some exercise!  She also walks the track, but I don't know how much other exercise she really gets in class.   She does participate in the Wii exercises, I hear - in her own unique way.  She likes to spin in front of the projector, just so everyone will yell at her to move, according to the staff.  She just spins and smiles!

We are going to a 'Celebration of Life' for Auntie Inez this afternoon.  I need to get in gear and get some munchies made t take - and get going and go shopping!  Alli let me sleep in this morning, and we are just now getting started.  Alli needed to sleep in - she was up at 4:00 yesterday, and hadn't gone to sleep until almost 11:00 - she had to be exhausted!  Ralph has a cold (that has probably turned into something else - he is going to the doctor's today) and while I was at the scout meeting, he napped on the couch, and Alli put herself to bed.  Of course, that meant she didn't brush her teeth or put on her jammies (and even worse - didn't get a dry diaper before bedtime!!)  She slept through the night until 6:45 this morning, and I don't even need to change her bed sheets!  She was tired!  Now, we both need to get a shower and some breakfast, and get our day started!

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Sacramento trip

I got to go to Sacramento (actually Elk Grove) for a conference and after the conference, a coworker and I found a nice little walking trail. Beautiful weather!

Monday, March 19, 2012

I was checking the hourly weather forecast yesterday, and it said rain would be moving in for the afternoon - around 3:00 or so.  I thought to myself - why don't I take the dogs for a walk early then?  About 12:30, the dogs and I went for a walk.  Guess what - you got it - it started to rain while we were out.  I didn't mind the rain, but then it hailed....really?  It didn't rain or hail hard - the dogs still had fun, and I got a bit of fresh air - all is good!

Here is my quilt - getting ready to get quilted - the first pin is in!

 Then - I really started pinning:

I got 149 pins in  the quilt (the package had 150, and I found one on the floor when I finished - really, I didn't count them as I put them in!!)

And then - I actually started sewing:

I did go in to town and get some invisible thread.  It does hide my mistakes, but is is also hard to correct, just as I thought.  Oh well - this is my 'learning' quilt.  I'm already re-thinking how I should be quilting it, but....since I've started it this way, I will continue with it.  I know now why having the free arm machines are so nice.  This is a small quilt, and it is hard to maneuver it around as I sew.  Now...I'm worried about the binding!  I need to figure out how to stop worrying about things before I get to them.

Sunday, March 18, 2012

It was a nice sunny day here yesterday, and I was feeling guilty for not going to Susanville.  Here's what the road looked like this morning:


Maybe I shouldn't fee TOO guilty!  There is 'weather' between here and there - just not weather at either place.

So far, I haven't done anything this morning but cruise the internet.  I should have started laundry, fixed breakfast, taken a shower, etc., but instead, I've been viewing videos for putting my quilt together, and looking for a new baby afghan pattern.  I wanted to order the Jungle Buddies pattern from Mary Maxim's website (I've long drooled over it, but couldn't convince myself I needed it) but  now that I decided I DO need it, it is on back order.  It figures!  I may have been pushing it time-wise anyway, since it is for a baby due in May, so now I need to come up with a different plan.  I still have the pattern for the safari baby quilt - I just wanted something different this time.  Here I am, planning the next baby afghan, and I haven't finished the one I have started!  I have a pink afghan almost done - just the edging is left.  Focus - I need to focus!  I'm planning too far in advance - I'll never get anyting finished that way!

I do plan on putting at least some time in on the quilt today.  I picked up most of the supplies I need yesterday, but the videos recommend clear thread - and I picked up a contrasting thread.  I can get started at least - I can get it pinned together.  I may quilt with the green thread - but clear thread would make it much less visible that I don't know what I am doing!  (It would make it harder to rip out, too I think, when I inevitably mess up!)  Decisions, decisions!

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Okay - so it's nice and sunny this morning - I could have gone to Susanville this weekend.  But, here's the road to Susanville this morning:


I'm sure it will be cleared later, but I would have been headed over before it thawed, I'm sure!  There is also supposed to be another storm coming in - we'll see if the weatherman was right on that one or not!
Ralph made it home safe and sound last night, a little tired around the edges.  He got in around 9:30-10:00 or so - I didn't look.  I went to bed at 11:00, and he was still up, trying to unwind.  I'm sure he's sleeping in today!

AJ is house-sitting (really, he is dog-sitting, but the house comes along with everything) this weekend, and he asked me to get him some 'provisions'.  Sure - what do you want?  "Some corn dogs, Lucky Charms, Cheese-its and some cokes."  What a menu!  I had to pick up a few of the items (he had eaten all the corn dogs we had at the house already) so I told him I would drop stuff off to him after work on Friday.  While I was at the store, I texted and called him - did he remember to pick up the milk, Cheese-its and ketchup from home?  No answer.  I waited a bit - no answer.  So, Alli and I left Walmart (in the middle of the rain and wind - the things we do for our kids!) to drop stuff off.  We are almost at the house and the phone buzzes.  No, he had forgotten every thing at the house.  So....choices - go back to the store while I was still in town and get stuff I already had at home, or go home and come back in to town to give him the stuff he had forgotten?  We ran by home, picked up milk, Cheese-its, and ketchup (I felt a bit funny walking out my door carrying three odd items to my car...what would you do with just those three things, I'm sure the neighbors would be wondering) and running back in to town with them.  AJ is house-sitting on the south end of town, so it wasn't as far a drive as it could have been, but still.  Alli and I got home from work/daycare at 6:30 last night. Talk about a long day!  I still needed to make dinner for her, too!  I didn't hear anything from AJ last night, so I'm sure he is doing fine.  He is planning on showing up for dinner tonight - the corn dogs are just for lunch and snacks.

Friday, March 16, 2012

All dressed up and no where to go - that was my evening last night.  AJ and I were supposed to go to a dinner for the Eagle Scouts and the Gold Scouts (Girls Scouts equivalent of an Eagle), but.....I got home from work, and AJ was sick.  Bummer!  I had left Alli at daycare, so I had to go back into town to pick her up, and then come back home, and still cook dinner.  AJ was feeling well enough to eat 6+ tacos (I lost count), but still not feeling to great last night when I went to bed (maybe it was the 6+ tacos??).  Hopefully he is better this morning, he has his last mid-term today.  He has next week off for Spring Break.  Ralph will be home from Dallas tonight, so we may be 'back to normal' for a while.

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Rain, rain, rain!  It's a good thing we are getting the rain, but....I'm already tired of it.  We've gotten 2 inches of rain in this storm, and I think it all came when I was getting in and out of the car, or walking in to Walmart, etc.  According to the paper today, we are still very far below normal - somewhere around 10 inches below normal for this time of year.  The radio said yesterday that the storms are continuing through the weekend, and the snow level is dropping to 900 feet on Saturday.  Guess when I was going to be going to Susanville?  You got it - Saturday.  I've cancelled the trip - no need to try to drive in the storm.  Even if it isn't as bad as they say it is, it sounds like more than I want to drive through just for a visit.

I'm one more step closer to finishing my quilt.  I went in Monday to the quilt store and got the backing fabric, and yesterday I got the 'stuffing' for it.  I guess since I cancelled my trip to Susanville, I will be figuring out how to do it without Mom's help - bummer!  Thank goodness for the internet.  Someone out there has instructions for me - probably even a video or two.  I'm not as clueless as I sound - I do remember seeing my mom's and sister's quilts in the midst of construction, even my grandmother's quilts that she had on a huge rack.  I've just never done it myself, and seeing something done is a whole lot different than doing it yourself.  Good thing this is my 'learning quilt'!

Yesterday, I got my first organic veggie shipment from Churn Creek Meadows Organic Farms.  They deliver a big box of produce to the bank for me - whenever I want - what a thought! (their website is  They have several options, and I chose the all veggie one.  I may switch out to the combination veggie/fruit box next time - we'll see.  Right now, I have it set up for every other week, and how can you beat free delivery right to your work??  Here is what I got in my box for $25.00:

What fun!  Alli and I had a salad last night with the mixed greens and red lettuce, and I added some of the snap peas to mine, along with some other veggies I already had.  Yum!  I'm not quite sure what I'm going to do with that huge leek though.  I've never cooked one before.  Luckily, the box comes with recipes for some of the more unusual veggies - this time it had a Leek, Carrot and Onion soup recipe.  I might be trying that this weekend.  It also had a recipe for Brussel sprouts that sounded tasty.  Always a new adventure at my house!  (I just have to lie to AJ and tell him, yes, he's had this before and yes, he liked it - the guy still doesn't like try new foods!)

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

I finished up a new pattern last night - a pot holder - pretty cute, and just in time.

This is what I found on my floor this morning - Koori (I'm sure it was her!) ate my potholder last night!  Good thing I just made a replacement.

Monday, March 12, 2012

My camellias are blooming - at least the ones outside my bedroom window.  The peach tree is blooming in the background, too - harder to see, but....Spring is here!

Ralph is off to Dallas this week, so the kids and I are on our own.  I think the hardest part will be remembering to pick up Allison!  I am hardly ever on pick-up duty (though I am on the send-off duty all the time!) so now I have to remember to stop on the way home and pick her up.  By the time I get used to it, Ralph will be back.  We were so proud of Alli last night.  I put her to bed (the time change made it difficult for her to go to sleep) and she got up and took herself in to the bathroom for a poopie all by herself!!!  Yippee!!!  There is hope yet!

Sunday, March 11, 2012

I finished my quilt top!  It may not be perfect, but I finished it!  I very happy with it, and the fact that I actually did it!  My very first quilt top.  I did some reading yesterday about options for finishing it, and I need to go investigate my options for the backing fabric and filler.  I don't want to go all out on this one, since I know there are so many mistakes on it, but I do want it to look nice.  I hope to have the fabric picked out by next weekend so I can take it with me to Mom's - hint, hint Mom!

I went to load my picture of my quilt top on the computer, and I had a few technical difficulties:

She started out very nicely, abut that changed quickly.

She is quite hard to see around!  I did finally get her to lay down so I could work around her.

Saturday, March 10, 2012

We got a call yesterday morning, Ralph's Aunt Inez died.  So sad, but not too unexpected.  She would have been 93 on her next birthday, and had been failing recently.  No services are planned at this time, but a Celebration of Life will be held later.

I'm off to quilting class today.  I even finished my homework!  Today we will get the last of the fabric for the quilt top, so I can finish the top, and then see what I need to do to actually put it together into a quilt.  I thought the quilting part was a bit daunting - now I have another unknown project on the horizon,  I think I'll be Googling that part of the project too.  I have found the best help for this quilt through Google.  Yes, I could have gone to the quilt shop for help, but....the time I needed the help was not a time that they were actually open.  The internet is always there, with videos and instructions.  I have to admit, I did find some sites that were not helpful at all - just because it is out there doesn't make it good!  I hope to get the top put together by next weekend, so I can take it to Susanville with me.  Mom's had a bit more experience with quilting - she should have a couple of good ideas for me!

Friday, March 09, 2012

It's Friday already!  The week/month/year is just flying by!  Our weather has been so nice lately that it really does feel like April already.  I'm afraid we will be in for a hot summer this year - I know it is going to be dry.  We do have another storm coming in this weekend/next week, and I'm hoping for some rain.  I missed the wet stormy weather we usually have - a good excuse to sit on the couch and watch movies and crochet.  Not that I didn't do that, I just didn't have the excuse of it being terrible weather outside!  I did get the yard cleaned up, so I am sort-of ready for Spring.  I'm not doing a garden this year, so I will just have some flowers to put out.

AJ's friend Dallas got an almost full-ride scholarship - to Pennsylvania!  Drexel College, to be precise.  Most of the scholarship is academic, so even if he is injured and can't wrestle, he will still have partial tuition.  Good for him, but we will really miss him here!!  AJ is already bummed out.  Dallas is going back to Drexel this weekend, I think - the Nationals are held there.  He took 8th in State, and I hope he does well at Nationals!

Monday, March 05, 2012

Short post - I'm almost late for work!  I finished the baby hat - too cute!  It looks a little big for a newborn,'s awfully cute!  I almost forgot to take a picture, which is why I am rushing now.

I also got some yard work done - I did, I did!  I got AJ to help me (for a short time) raking leaves up, and then he graciously got the lawn mower out and mulched them.  My front yard look so much better!

Sunday, March 04, 2012

I did it!  I finished my quilt - at least as far as I have fabric for!  All those little mistakes I made in the beginning sure compound into bigger problems later - good thing this one is a 'learning quilt'.  It was my least favorite of the 4 we are making.

And here is the doily I finished last night.  I thought the colors would look better together than they do, but....

Just as I hoped, a quiet weekend (so far).  Ralph has a cold, so we aren't doing too much any way.  I opened window yesterday to let the beautiful day in, and dried sheets on the line as well - they smelled so good last night!  I forgot to close those windows last night, so this morning it was a bit chilly in the house.  It's 37 degrees outside now - a big difference from the 75 of yesterday afternoon!  I baked bread yesterday - french bread loaves - and we had some with dinner last night - wonderful!!  The recipe makes two large loaves, so one is going home with AJ's friend today to his house.

I did finish up a small doily (pictures later, I hope) last night.  I'm not exactly happy with my color choices, but...I'm not going to rip it out, so it stays as it is.  I also have a baby hat I want to finish today, and I also plan on finishing my quilt (at least as much as I have fabric for.)  I'm hoping to get some yard work done today.  It sounds like an ambitious day - we'll see what I actually get done.

Saturday, March 03, 2012

We made it through the week!  Happy weekend!  The end of the month/first of the month is always busy at work, so it was nice to pair that with a slower schedule at home.  The only activity I had after work was scouts on Tuesday, and that was a nice, fun meeting, back to what they used to be.  I'm so glad the drama is over!

I had a little crab pattern from a Yahoo! group that was just too cute not to make - isn't it adorable???

It was so cute - I made a bunch of them!

I showed AJ the first one that I made, and he actually asked me to make one for him - in orange.  Orange?  Sure - I can do that!  It isn't often that I get a request from him for something I made.  I took the rest in to work on the 1st and passed them out.  We all had a 'crabby' day!  It did lighten the mood a bit!

Alli went to her pediatrician on Tuesday for his thoughts on a swallowing study for her.  The school nurse had called and asked that we consider it, since she chokes so much.  Dr. G wasn't too hop on a study - more because what would we do with the results than anything else.  Would we want to do surgery to fix what he considered a minor problem (she is definitely thriving as it is)?  He suggested we talk with an Occupational Therapist and see what they say.  If they recommended someone else, he would be more inclined to go with that.  I now have a prescription from him to see an OT.  I haven't called yet - maybe next week???  On the up side, her rash is getting better, and Dr. G made some other recommendations to keep the itch down a bit for her.  He agreed that it was going to take a while for the rash to go away - bummer!