Thursday, February 21, 2019

I Like #129

 Welcome to this week's list of likes! I like Valentine Flowers, and husbands who come home with them, and honestly I like flowers anytime! Don't you? We are short on bright colors around here at the moment.

I like how the tiny Valentine painting came out, the heart flowers are quilted in...
I loved talking to my friends this week on the phone, and in my art quilt meeting.
this quilt is pretty big... about 32" X 36"

I loved finishing the Valentine quilt, and believe me it was a big push at the end.
I made it with thin strips/strings and had to match background strip size to red strip size, then decide where to position them. There are many Valentine fabrics in the piece, plus some dogs of course!

I finished hand sewing the binding on, turned it over in triumph, and then saw the loose weave muslin at the bottom edge had pulled out! Panic! No problem...
 I just fixed it by un sewing the binding, front and back, then piecing in another strip of white to cover the frays,

 and reapplying the binding... front and back. Not hard, just tricky and unexpected.
Machine embroidery stitches here and there

the quilting came out just as I'd like it to... whimsical, balanced but not symetrical, flowers for beauty, vines for growth, horizontal lines for peace and groundedness. It's our 25th Valentine quilt so far.

I loved the shadows cast by our family room table when the sun came back after two days of snow

I am really liking the current mystery novel, recommended by Diann at little penguins.

Love that the BBC show Delicious is back. Dawn French who was Vicar of Dibley is in it. The drawback is there are only 4 episodes in a season. That's simply NOT ENOUGH.

I like Survivor is back, and Doc Martin, and Housewives of Beverly Hills.

I liked stumbling upon this mandolin group on Youtube

I liked this denim vest for dogs
Denim Dog Vest with Wild Breed biker patch and studs. Even if your sidekick doesnt ride on the back, this mutt can strut his wild breed heritage. All DenimDawgs vests are made from recycled blue jeans with the best fashion labels. Nice and soft and just the right faded indigo color. A
I like this pet bed (link: and there are lots of them to make yourself... heh heh don't mention that to Milo

I thought Wed's horrible-scope was inspirational:" Look for ways to free yourself from unnecessary worry or attachments to the past that are holding you back."
How do they know me?

Milo's Moments
Hi y'all! I like nearly everything except being told to "staywithmama" which is all I seem to hear on walks anymore. How can I read pee mail and look for bunnies tied to Mama's apron strings? Just kidding, as if Mama wore an apron since there is little cooking going on around here unless it's the half hearted attempt to warm my kibble with hot water. Sheesh. But back to likes... I liked the ball I found in my toy box when Mama tipped it over
And I liked the tribute Mama wrote for me, since I can't type, and am busy watching for intruders, you can( read here.).. love you!!!

Now be sure to see what these people have on their lists this week! Join us sometime... if you write a post let Mama know and you're in!



  Minou's Minute 

(part of our group but not posting today)

Linking to:
off the wall Fridays
can I get a whoop whoop Fridays 
myquiltinfatuation Thursdays

Tuesday, February 19, 2019

The informer

I've decided Milo's role is that of

"The Informer"

Cole-buddy was the policeman. He hated conflict, he maintained order in every situation. If his playmate ran through my flower garden and I yelled get out of the garden, he turned to look at me, saw the source of the conflict, and ran over to nip at heels til the offender had left the area.

Milo is the Informer. He would loudly bark to alert us to the garden trampler but would not go over to enforce the law. He's a communicator. Like the commercial on TV he just lets you know there's a problem, he doesn't solve the problem.

If you're an informer, then living around other people is a non stop job.
He must be constantly on the alert to a neighbor leaving their house to get in their car, or a cat in the yard, a dog walking by the fence. If he can see it, he's letting us know he can see it. It's up to us what to do about it, that's not his job.

He's the informer.

He is also not conflicted about his announcements. He does not defer to our corrections to use an inside voice or be quiet. He knows best. It's his job, and if our puny human ears can't handle the truth then it's on us. He informs. The informer.

Once he's let us know there is something suspect within view or earshot, then he comes back to stand by our chairs, to touch base and let us know he's here. In case we need back up in handling the issue of a dog walker, or a squirrel. Yep, he's right there to help, mostly by emotional support.

He's more of a bark and run type of fellow.

He takes his job very seriously and is on alert all waking moments. Ready with a ruff! or a Bark... BARK... BARKBARKBARKBARK!
Are they DEAF?
It must be exhausting, since there is no police-type here now to follow up his alerts. He has to rely on our feeble efforts to protect the home. He's on full throttle all the live-long day and at night, falls asleep hard. When he goes out, he's out. There's no waking him.
"off duty" "leave a message" "let sleeping dogs lie"
 He sleeps as hard as he runs during the day. You can shove him over in the bed, but it's a slow inch by inch of ground. After you wedge him over, and slide your own legs in bed, a dog arm reaches over your leg to pin you in place. Until he rolls over onto his own back, 4 legs akimbo, in complete trust that his work is done for that day.

Linking to:
Thankful Thursdays pet parade

Monday, February 18, 2019

The week ahead...

Every time I write these posts I think of the Carol King lyrics,
Looking out on the morning rays...
Welcome to this week's Happy Homemaker post.

The Weather
First the good news, it's sunny. Clear skies. This weekend we woke to heavy gray skies, and the wind nearly blew us sideways on our morning walk. I asked DH who has his mental finger on the weather at all times, is snow predicted. Nope he said! It was bitterly cold and serious winds, and here on the high desert you could see far in the distance that someone was getting snow storms. Milo had no sooner returned from his playdate with Gracie, but big fat flakes made for near white out conditions.

A pop-up storm! We got about 2" from all afternoon of heavy snow so we just stayed in the rest of the day. It snowed again overnight.  It's been in single digits with strong winds, 10F as I write this, a 6 boot walk is happening at this moment, and I'm still drinking my first cup of coffee.
But it's sunny.

If I ever get dressed I'll put on snuggly cuddle duds fleece leggings, long 'wears and a long cuddly sweater. The plan, or hope is to do some house chores and then work in the studio today. My cuddle duds have been the star this winter.

View from my perch
well, I wanted a bigger house, but now there's a lot of real estate to clean. I love the house though.

To Do
I still need to go over the table tops with a duster, and to mop again.
Water all the house plants
organize the library books, I've gotten a lot of them lately
make more vege soup as we both loved being able to have some as a starter every day
Try to contact a puppy owner to set up a play date as Milo and the spaniel seem to love each other at the fence
Wonder if this could be the week the Christmas boxes get moved back to the basement???

finished the tea house mystery and requested the next in series already. Was listening to the Aviator's Wife... but stopped. It was fascinating til the baby was abducted, and I remembered it's a true story. I just can't take any extreme sadness at the moment, and the writer pulled me into the lives of the Lindbergs so much it's like it's happening right now.

I felt the pull of Ann Morrow Lindberg's struggle to do what was socially accepted of a woman in 1920's... be quiet and good, support your man and deny your needs, but what do you do with the strong need to be yourself, to achieve your own goals, to write your books, to think your thoughts?
It was challenging for women, may still be, to be seen as people by a lot of men.
There is a resurgence in that kind of thinking again... it's not good.

Lessons learned
I watched an Oprah interview of Melinda Gates. It was wonderful, just wonderful to hear how she and her husband are trying to give back to the world. Oprah asked, "how do you limit spending for your children? You can't say you can't afford something" and Ms Gates answered thoughtfully, "just because you can doesn't mean you should" They are trying to figure out the best way to share their wealth and decided health care helps the most people. She said, every life matters, and we are all responsible to take care of each other. It's a nice respite from the profit driven people in power at the moment... line your own pockets and let people grab what they can if there is anything left.

Anyway, so I stopped listening to Aviator. I got a view of the American icon Charles Lindberg that reminded me I don't like men like that, who demand their way first, who are ego driven. I moved on to the Orchard. There are about 4 actors reading the book to me as I sew, a story about pioneers in Ohio, making a living in swampy land and raising lots of kids. The wife is very very unlikable, and although the husband seems to try to do the right things, he beats her and whips the kids that survived (lost 5, had 5 more) because that's what you did then. I think I'll be looking around for another book on disc.
At night I'm reading a mystery series Diann at littlepenguins told us about on the I Like Thursday posts. It is well written and engaging or was til I fell asleep holding it!

Doc Martin is back! Victoria continues, and the BBC show Delicious with it's cast of quirky characters and intriguing plot lines has a new season available now on ACORN. Yea! Survivor and When calls the heart and Project Runway start this week I think!

did you see the adopted dog show on Hallmark??? It's on again tonight, with categories like best tummy rub, best smile, best senior dog adoption. Love. It's funny too!

Tips and tricks
I have a lovely red tablecloth of damask. My pen leaked turquoise ink all over a section!!! I noticed when I spilled morning coffee all over it this weekend! I put a paper towel under the ink stains, and poured rubbing alcohol on it and the color started to bleed out... yea! I did that many times but the ink was so saturated and stain so big, I got heady from the alcohol. I took it outside and dipped it in a bucket of water to soak.
Now I was worried the coffee would dry while the ink soaked. We noticed the water was turning blue... oh... so we changed it out, and soaked a while longer, then put the whole kit and caboodle into the wash and both stains disappeared!

trying to be healthy but losing the battle. We seem to need comfort food. At least we eat fresh vegetables, salads, and fruit too. We're just both tired of the whole survival struggle and want food to be easy. The tangerines are good right now, and we had some terrific brussel sprouts the other night. We live in a time when you can get produce from other places not coated in snow, so that's nice.
I've noticed if I get really into an art project I eat less, and that's the case right now.

woohoo! I finished the Valentine quilt and will do a post on Wed sharing what I learned making it, showing pics of the flowers, feathers, and vines I quilted into in with golden thread. I went ahead and quilted the tiny painted woman above, from January, too.

I'm doing three sets of blocks using my yellow scraps for Rainbow Scrap challenge online. The flowering snowballs are just challenging enough and easy enough to make me want to make lots of them! Currently I am making yellow gemstones though, so the studio is full of topaz, amber and yellow diamonds.. stay tuned for that post on Saturday!
I bead, knit, paint and write, but sewing has been a life long passion of mine.
Writing is it's equal, and I did fictional stories the last two Sundays, if you're interested.

speaking of writing, I love those of you who read my words... it's refreshing to know I have a group who want to keep up with what other women are doing around the world this week... and thankful for the link party so we could find each other at

I couldn't find the whole interview of Oprah and Melinda Gates but it's worth seeking out ondemand. I did find this one little bit of it... please enjoy

I am not on FB, by choice, but this is available to even me, worth a look and again, please seek out the show (Supersoul Sunday) on your streaming devices as each person was very interesting and worth hearing! this is a review

Milo's week ahead
When Mama tipped out my toybox this weekend, in a futile effort to keep me occupied, I realized I have to go through this and decide if there are any I'm done with. They get pretty chewed up in play time.

I'll leave you with a little beauty provided by DH for V-day
I loved all of them especially the purple shimmery fabric around them! Good choice my darling!

Linking to these parties
ruby tuesdays

Sunday, February 17, 2019

sunday stories

THIS WEEK'S WORDS come from the first stanza of the book-length poem "The Prodigal" by Derek Walcott: train, move, factories, turning, book, blocks, wild, dusk, sent, framed, blue, brickwork

                             When Life Changes
The train was keeping rhythm in her body as she watched the country side go by. Susan let her book fall to her lap so she could close her eyes a moment, feel the rhythm of clackety clack lull her into peace.

She needed to block the monkey brain jumping from idea to idea.

Just feel it she thought. Just let your body sway in your seat, hear the faint sounds of other people talking, breathe and relax.

Opening her eyes, she saw factories in the distance, wondered if people were working today. It was a work day for most, and there was a bit of steam or smoke rising from the roofs. Did they mind their work? Did they zone out like she was trying to do now? As they came alongside the buildings, she noted the intricate brickwork along the roofline and wished they still built them that way now. No, nowadays it's all about profit, and no one seemed to care about beauty as much. She did but then she was not like most people.

It had been a wild whirlwind of a week for her. (clakety clack, woo woo, look out coming through)

She glanced down at her blue phone and thought how much beauty in the everyday meant to her. She never expected to be an artist. She dutifully went though university on a scholarship to become a teacher, but her heart was always into the arts. She imagined her name up in lights over a Broadway theater, or on a poster for an art opening, but it was a good thing to know her name would be on the cover of her first novel too.

She was taking the train to the city, NYC, the BIG city. She had never expected the call from the editor, informing her they wanted to publish her book and asking for a meeting. Turning her from a high school English teacher into a published author. She sent a request for time off to the school immediately, then turned her attention to what to wear.

Why is it so important to women, what to wear? Men put on their suit. A suit, requiring no more than a trip to the cleaners, and choice of tie color. Susan hoped this would not necessitate a move, she liked her little house and the town. This book would hold her story, but also her hopes and dream of becoming successful. She thought of the framed picture of her dog, that she kept on her desk at work. She thought of the students, then thought of the mindless demands of administration. Demands that she do bus duty, and meet on her own time for planning. If this worked out she might just quit, or she might just not be as resentful about the stupid demands  as she was now, just enjoy teaching knowing she was really an artist underneath.

What a shift that would be. She liked the students, and liked writing at night. One day she could make a really big change, but for now she needed to quiet her soul and prepare herself for good things to come.              (c)LAPaylor

linking to

Saturday, February 16, 2019

exploring the color yellow

The color of the month for Rainbow Scrap Challenge is yellow. Sunny yellow, happy energetic, glowing yellow.

I went back with the flowering snowball templates, and made last month's red to go with this month's yellow blocks and whee! what fun!

I sorted through my yellow squares to make the chandelier blocks (from Stitch Therapy) and something about going from raggedy scraps to tidy blocks piled up soothes me.

My chandelier blocks  don't look outstanding in yellow but I know blended in with all the colors, they will make the quilt sing and glow.
The fabrics are cute. The top left is a Dr. Seuss from my MD friend Cheryl.
Love the florals and the sheep. Larger center squares lend themselves to focus prints.
that pic is skewed a bit! But they are now safely tucked in next to the red blocks, all the RSC blocks are in the same box, so I can find them again each month. Soon there will be too many of each block for that. I am doing Chandelier blocks, Snowball blocks, and abstract gemstone logcabin blocks. On the other week I do some little abstract.

I finished the Valentine quilt, and love it again. Mid way I usually feel I've wasted all that fabric and time, but something about tidying up the edges, binding, and blocking makes it all worth while! I'll do another post on that and the wee little painting I turned into a 3" X 4" masterpiece (lol)

Milo is tired of me sewing so much lately
 I heard a humph flop! and he laid down next to his bed. I patted the little bed and he scooched, does your dog do that? move without getting up? He scooched his head over to touch it. Died of boredom.

linking to these parties:
Let's be social Wednesdays 
Midweek makers wednesdays
 Free motion by the River Tuesdays    

Esther's blog Wednesdays to do Tuesday 
oh Scrap Sundays 
 scrap happy Saturdays
sewcanshe Saturdays

Wednesday, February 13, 2019

I like Thursday Happy Valentines day!

Valentine quilt in progress... almost done!
  Welcome to this week's list of likes... and it's Valentines day! Happy V-day to all my friends! Love you!

vintage Valentine cards on the mantel
 Let's Start with a surprise gift box from my friend Diane (who lives in Texas with two s'poo's)
The little chicken pin cushion, complete with awesome hairdo, and the flamingo pink aurifil thread were merely two gifts in the box. Milo will show you a few items later.
Love love love the fabric she sent... I'd buy yardage but it's vintage... just look at the little bows on those s'poos!Ooo lala
Then my friend Sally in MA sent me a bumper sticker from contra dance...

each contra dance starts with two couples holding hands 4
anyone else do contra dance? We haven't gone since moving but hopefully we will soon...

We liked this quick crispy thin crust pizza from the grocery store
and these sinfully good coconut cookies
I loved quilting my Valentine quilt this week, and will do a more in depth post on it later
Just seeing the texture develop with parallel lines and free motion quilting...
Very improvisational

Want to hear some pretty music? Here are three love songs hand picked for you

Say a little prayer

We were made to love...

My friends Danny and Charlie sent me this bandana so I will get lots of pets when we go out... and two new toys!!!
Is that for me? Give it to me !!!
I can take the tag off, just let me hold it. It's all soft and squeaky and crinkly! Mama loves them cause I haven't torn the wings off yet! A dragon and a shark.Ha! That shark hasn't met poodle teeth yet!
I figured out there is a bottle inside one of them that crinkles, so I took off the cap while it was inside, then opened the bottom to take out the bottle but Mama took it and replaced the bottle and closed it up.
and gave it back so it crinkled again. These are my two new favorite toys and I love them.
It's so much fun to have a new toy, isn't it?
Now, why don't you go see what Mama's peeps liked this week? And join Mama's little party by doing an I Like post too! Let us know.


  Minou's Minute

(part of our group but not posting today)

I'm going to these parties, want to come along?
sundays in the city
Pink Saturday!
can I get a whoop whoop Fridays
Thankful Thursdays pet parade

Monday, February 11, 2019

the week ahead

Command Central
Another Monday, and we meet again.
The weather is quite nice this morning. It's cold but then it's winter. After several days of sun on the snow, there is a lot of ice still around here, but our driveway has almost melted. Yes DH shovels, and I sweep what's left but still ice forms.

As I look around I see a lot that needs doing but I just cannot keep up with it. I have a PT appt today to try to relieve the nerve pinch. I do love this house however big and dusty it is! I try to pick up the random stuff before going to bed each night so it's tidy, if dusty, but that poodle made quite a little mess yesterday.

He's tired of us being injured and not getting to play as much, so he tore into cardboard, and tore up toys, got every toy out of his box, pulled the sofa blankets around! It looks like a storm went through here! (no I won't show you the mess!)

I wonder if all of you have designer homes, without piles of magazines and library books and sewing stuff. I can see the boxes of things to address and mail to friends, a pile of dish towels to wash, one stubborn box to unload from the move, amazon boxes waiting to go to recycling, etc.

To Do
finish as much quilting on the V-day quilt as possible before PT
Call PT to see if I can go in later in the day
Make some soup as DH doesn't feel well
Wash my clothes, got DH's done yesterday
Take a long walk in the middle of the day when it's warmer and I can see ice on sidewalks
Try to be nice (hard when my nerve is pinched)

Oh you know, fresh fruit and vegetables, meat and cheese, bread and milk. The attempt is always balance but cookies tip the scales

I finished the V-day quilt top and am in process of quilting it. I love seeing the stitching add up, giving it texture and line. Making the edges tidy after all the design work. I love that it was made from the scrap bins.. something pretty from throwaway pieces.
I am ready to baste the winter cattails too, but that will wait til I'm better

I found a great series online, of stories of animals adopting or befriending other animals... narrated by the most charming actress! I am enjoying that. Survivor starts soon, yea!!! I admit I watch the bachelor, and he's just not ripe yet... he's so immature in a childish way, of not being ready to face the demands of love. He's annoying but I watch. I also watch the good doctor, This is Us, and look forward to seeing the Housewives of Beverly Hills return. Doc Martin current season was released in the US so we're watching that too.

I really enjoyed the book on CD about the Sherlock Holmes shop owner, sorry but I gave the wrong title for that last time. The reader was good and clear. I'm now listening to the Aviator's Wife about Anne Morrow Lindberg. Terrific reader and well written. I listen while quilting and it's one of life's pleasures to be read to.

I grew up in Tampa and there is a large Latin quarter, formed by cigar factories long ago... the cigar workers would listen to a reader all day as they worked back in the early 1800's. They had schooling as well as entertainment and isn't that a progressive thing to do for workers to keep their minds busy as well as their hands?

DH was told by a coworker that the hard water here caused their skin to crack. Hmph. I had to learn to use lotion more often, and my heels crack painfully. I am now using CeraV because my friend Shannon, from (I'm working on a project) told me about it. It's helpful... if I remember to use it. Another friend told me to use the bath net balls to help with dry skin, so I'm enveloped in the Light Blue scent I love in the shower now.

Lesson learned
 I watched videos of animals adopting other animals. Human animals have thought for years that they are superior because they have language and use tools. Well, the video showed animals kindly taking in prey to raise, a group of monkeys adopting a marmossette for instance, instead of eating it. They showed those monkeys using tools to prepare food, as do crows and otters. We know animals communicate we are not able to speak their language so many humans think they are beneath us.

Which led me to think that we do this kind of one up manship to other humans too. Since other groups of people are different, they sound different and not understanding them we say they are speaking gibberish. They dance differently or dress differently so they are less than.

It seems to me, humans do this to rationalize holding them beneath, enslaving them because they aren't really equal, keeping them out of our midst as they are not as worthy somehow, because they are a lesser religion or color or gender or love the wrong way.I watch lions adopt little deer, and tigers and bears become a herd because they grew up together.
Is that the answer to accepting other human groups... being near enough to see that they are just like us, just different? Could people act as kindly to each other some animals do?

Image result for all you need is love
Linking to
 Free motion by the River Tuesdays Awe Mondays