Monday, February 29, 2016

Leap Day!

I'm taking today as a bonus. The sun is shining and it's warm outside. I'm going to accomplish just three things on this extra day.

What three things? 

1) something fun; 
2) something I've put off; and 
3) something kind.

After that, my day is free. I'll go with the flow and see what happens. No expectations, no plans. Maybe I'll flip a coin or roll the dice (like Sheldon) to make decisions. Or just follow my thoughts wherever they lead. 

This beautiful day might give me insight, help me relax, or allow me new experiences.  Leaping out sounds like fun, don't you think?

Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Sewing...and More

Lately I've been spending my spare time doing what I love...sewing! After my last project, I freshened up my work space, put away scrap pieces, cleaned the machine and changed needles. Beginning a new project in an organized space helps me engage more creative brain cells. Several more designs are already awaiting my attention. I'm looking forward to a retreat to my own sewing room several times a week. It may be cheaper than therapy.

Once I finished in the sewing room, I focused my efforts on the kitchen pantry. New shelf liner and a couple of graduated racks for canned goods make it look nicer. Labels keep things organized and easy to find. Soon, I'll work my way through the rest of the cabinets—laundry room, bathrooms, hall closet, office—to sort and purge.

What's the upside to all this organizing? I'll have more time to spend living life, doing what I enjoy!

Useful Notion: Being organized isn't about getting rid of everything you own or trying to become a different person; it's about living the way you want to live, but better. ~Andrew Mellen

Monday, February 15, 2016

Winter Leftovers

Another winter project complete! I've used more leftover black and white print fabric plus a modern teal and black print that I've been saving for a while. The result is a high contrast nine block quilt called Center Crossroads. Even with the little pieces, I finished this one in a day and a half.

My secret? A disappearing four patch technique. It starts as a large four patch block of two contrasting fabrics, which is then sliced up and rearranged. As long as you keep your rotary cutter sharp and your ruler steady, the seams match up nicely. I experimented with a diagonally sliced block for the back, so this lap quilt is reversible.

Whoever thought of this method is a genius. I imagine it's a rotary cutter invention. I don't remember seeing the technique in older quilting magazines or patterns. And I just can't imagine Granny Rose or Granny Hill cutting up a completed quilt block with scissors to rearrange it, but maybe they did. Those women were pretty resourceful and could have used short cuts that they kept to themselves.

Useful Notion: Cutting fabric into little squares and sewing it back together may sound like insanity, but it actually keeps me from going to pieces.

Any day spent sewing is a good day.

Monday, February 8, 2016

Nanner Puddin'

Something this delicious just has to be a Southern thang. It's been a staple dish for pot luck suppers and Sunday dinners on the ground since at least the early 1900's. Originally made entirely from scratch, a quicker alternative came along when Jell-O introduced instant and cook-and-serve puddings.

What's not to like about vanilla pudding, vanilla wafers and bananas layered in a Pyrex dish, topped with either whipped cream or fluffy meringue?  In the summer, I make it cold with instant pudding and Cool Whip for a sweet creamy treat.  But in winter, I'm partial to the warm, gooey cooked version with a pretty golden meringue. Either way, nanner puddin' doesn't last long around this house.

Life is short, eat dessert first.

I'd give up desserts, but I'm no quitter. 


Monday, February 1, 2016


We all have expectations; whether they're high or low depends mainly on our current situation. Sometimes they give us a false sense of security. Other times we are pleasantly surprised when the outcome is better than we thought.

As we wait for the groundhog to appear tomorrow, enjoy a few of my favorite quotes on this interesting subject.

Coffee has given me unrealistic expectations of productivity.

This is not a bakery. I don't sugar coat anything. If you ask for my opinion, that's what you will get. Don't get mad when it's not what you want to hear.

People who wonder if the glass is half empty or half full miss the point.  The glass is refillable.

It is a mistake to set high expectations for people who have already let you down.

Too many people miss the silver lining because they are expecting gold.

I wonder if my expectations are too high, or if I am just expecting things from the wrong people.

Follow the trail of your dreams, not the highway of others' expectations.


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