Monday, December 21, 2015

CHRISTMAS SUGAR COOKIES

Today I made my sugar cookies and frosted them also.  I did miss my "counter surfer", Miss Daisy Mae Foxhound, who I lost in August.  She made the process and other counter things difficult but fun.  No one could take her place as she is my bff.  My two old little doxies, of course, cannot reach the counter, and my new little guy, Yorkie, also is too small.  Even if they could reach the counter, Daisy Dog would always be the special counter surfer.  Miss you much today my sweet friend.
Have a wonderful Holiday Season with all those you love, the two and four legged ones.  Bake, eat, talk, laugh, cry, sing, rest, and then do it all over again.  Also, remember what and why you celebrate the season for...JESUS was born and then died for your sins.  Worship and praise HIM this holiday season.  

Wednesday, December 2, 2015

As 2016 Comes to Me...


This past year has not been an easy year, nor was 2014, but we are at the end and I do have many good memories.  I am still able to do the things I want and even learn new and exciting things, and also plan more exciting travels if I desire.

This is a time of year that I start to not feel a bit depressed, but more reflective of the past year or years.  It gives me pause to reflect on the many good things and the few difficult things that I have gone through.  I gives me pause to reflect on things I liked but will not continue doing.  And the same goes for things that maybe I did not like so much, but gave them some time in my life before deciding to change them around also.

It has been a pleasure to blog, so I will keep doing this.  It is a way to express my thoughts and reflections and I find it a good outlet.  I continue to exercise, not as much walking, but still some.  I no longer camp nor have my Daisy Mae Foxhound to camp and take long walks with.  It does mean I can still enjoy the outdoors, which I do, and also enjoy the two little old doxies I have, ages 13 and 12.  I continue to exercise at the YMCA with yoga and swimming of laps.  Very relaxing and enjoyable plus keeps this old body limber.  However, since diagnosed with osteoporosis, especially in my back, hip and left leg and lower right leg, plus left neck and shoulder, and told that with meds it will keep it where it is, but all these places are at "easy fracture" condition....I don't think I will do aerobics, bike ride, or climbing, do to the fall factor.  I am thankful for what I can do at age 67 and really appear and feel to be in good health.  

My hobbies will continue to be knitting, and using my new circular knitting machine for socks and such, maybe to make and sell some on ebay to reap back the price of this wonderful machine.  I will quilt, of course, and do some crocheting, bake, cook, and sew other things.  But I did clear out my hobby closet to rid myself of some things.  One just cannot do everything.  I will paint also, so have a painting area in my closet, lots of yarns, winders, swift, and needles, etc.  I have quilt fabric, patterns, and a idea notebook for all.  Photography is always a must for me as I see so much beauty every day.  I also use many of the photos for oil painting materials ideas.    

I have discontinued scrapbooking, making cards, crocheting with threads, and also rug making.  I am no longer camping, and feel I am losing interest in the glamping things, Mary Jane Farm stuff as it is all connected to the camping as far as I am concerned.  I have enjoyed the glamping, the sisterhood, and my little group of women by mail or on line, but hunger more for connection with women locally that I can go to coffee with or sit and knit with.  But then again I don't care so much if I continue my knitting group which meets weekly and do not plan to continue my book discussion group which meets monthly.  It seems to me I am enjoying being home more, getting things done here and staying peaceful.

Peaceful has lots to do with it.  I don't even go to a Bible Study any longer as the women were too agrumentitive.  I see this at the book discussion and also at the knitting circle.  I have appreciated how MJF states that we will be united and not agree or push about certain things.  Oh, I do have my opinions and care lots about religion and politics, etc, community things.  But I also have the belief that these things can be discussed by adults in a polite and kind way without anger and put downs.  I have even seen it in my family, and it is just shameful.  So with that little rant, I am thinking maybe this is some of the reason for my pullback, but mostly it is because I am so tired and want to have energy to do the very things I want and enjoy doing, so will do those before spreading myself out to others.  Depressed, not really, saddened by many and also many things going on around me, but joyful in my own life and rejoicing that I can have calm and peace within and am grateful.

So,  a new year is coming, and I plan to try some new things and ways to do things.  Change is a good thing.  

x

Tis the Season....

Yes, it is the season for so much.  I have been trying to enjoy much of it all and passing on that joy to others with a smile, a hug, a small gift, or just some time.  I also am passing it on to myself by taking care to exercise, rest, and trying to eat right.  It seems I have tried to eat right and exercise lots in my life, but not always get all the rest I needed.  Now that I am retired, it does work better.  I have whole days I don't go anywhere and some I even stay in my pj's all day.  

So Thanksgiving has passed, and all I can say is, next year my plans are to go and serve the meal at some shelter like Salvation Army, where things may not have so much drama....taking care of myself here.  Then the wonderful Black Friday shopping which I enjoy doing, but with stores starting early, it takes some from the excitement.  We still do try to get up early on Friday and go and do some shopping and then out to a late breakfast or early lunch, depending on how much we shopped.  This year my daughter, who came to Thanksgiving at my son's house, asked to stay the night with us and then head out shopping with us the next day.  It was nice having a house quest and also to shop with.  Lots of laughs and wow's had by all.  
Saturday was the shop local or small town.  We did that by purchasing a new car.  Fun and I like my new little Chevy Sonic, plus side is that it is "red", good mileage, and smaller/easier to park and also see out of the back windows.  Sunday we attended our church and enjoyed that worship and fellowship.  On Monday, Cyber Monday, I , of course, had to take a part in that also, so I ordered some yarn as I have great plans to go through lots once I master making them on my circular sock knitting machine.  I have knit for 55 years and enjoy knitting socks on needles also.  I also ordered a book for my Kindle, Hemingway, which I wanted to read and also is one that FRANCE has again been reading after the attacks on Paris.  Hemingway had a "small house" on the Seine, in Paris and I was able to see this and take photos while visiting in September.
Of course I could not resist getting in on the half price of the final season of Downton Abbey, which will not ship to me until in February, but it will complete my collection of this wonderful series.  The biggest thing was that on Giving Tuesday we were able to pass our 2011 Mailbu over to our 18 year old grandson, John.  He was very excited and thankful for this gift.  He will get lots of years of use from this nice vehicle.  

Wow, I don't know what they call today, Wednesday after Thanksgiving, or the days to follow, but for me and my house, we are calling them Wednesday, Thursday, and so on.  Trusting you all had a joyful time also this Thanksgiving season and now enter into a great holiday season however you celebrate it.

Sunday, November 15, 2015



Quilts


This is my newest finished quilt.  It is just a simple 8 x 10 inch blocked quilt in pretty fall/Christmas colors.  It is in flannels and I purchased it as a kit from our local knit shop...Hickory Stick of Hannibal, MO.  In fact a number of years ago this shop was one of the top ten shops in our nation.  Many new shops have opened since and I have been to many but this nice sized shop in historic downtown Hannibal is a most for me to visit often.  Sometimes I just go in to visit with the ladies and see what they are up to and tell them what I am doing.  Sometimes I even take my finished projects in to show them off.

Quilting, to me, is like painting with fabric.  You are planning the color scheme, texture, media, design.  I do oil paint and some watercolor, and I find that quilting, like painting and even knitting or other hobbies I have, is just a wonderful way to express my creativity and style.

Knitting In Circles.....

It would be an acknowledgment that I am an avid knitter since I have knit since I was 12 years old and am not 67.  I have knit most of my adult life every single day, but way back then in my teens I made socks for skiing, sweaters and even a coat.  My best memory of that coat is that I ordered the yarn and my dad held his hands up for the hanks so I could wind them into balls.  It was a soft blue with a black fleck and I did a piping edging of black.

Since those days I continue to knit socks,  my favorite.  I also knit mittens and caps and infant caps and scarves, shawls, sweaters and some coats.  I knit a box of caps/scarves/mittens each year to ship out to the Native American Elders Program.  I also knit infant hats for the newborns at our local hospital.  I have knit sweaters a few years of another charity that sends them to underprivileged children, here in the U.S. and also abroad.  My last ones went to the country of Congo.

With knitting lots, come yarn shopping lots and I do most of it online.  Recently I was able to also order a winder and a swift.  You see, my knitting in circles is taking on a new scale.  I have purchased a circular knitting machine from Erlbacher/Gearhart and pick it up this Friday at a Cranking Conference (what they call their get togethers) as the machines are threaded and then you knit by cranking the machine.  My machine is brand spanking new, but is made from the design of the old gearhart machines.  It is metal, and has two cylinders, a ribber, and is red in color.  (Just a nice touch seeing red is my favorite color)

Once I get my machine and set it up, I will post pictures.  For now, I am excited to be on to a new adventure.  Life can be so full of it, so get out and enjoy it.

Friday, October 23, 2015

SISTERHOOD


That is a nice word, and I so enjoy being a part of it all, the writing, the reading, the doing projects, earning badges.  I must say that after some losses, I did remove myself from doing any badges for some time now, which is sad, as I really do enjoy doing them.  I sometimes think it is because I was never a girl scout and this is like being an adult scout.  My family lived way out in the country and my dad drove truck and my mother did not drive.  It is not to say I did not learn lots, because I did.  My mother was very talented and passed much on to me, even having a good work ethic.  I am thankful for that.  However, I never did have a sister so very much enjoy writing and receiving notes and emails from those in my Scattered Prairie Gals group.

After losing my dear Daisy Mae Foxhound, bbf and glamping partner, I gave up for a bit, somewhat depressed and sad.  I had my wonderful trip to FRANCE, and treasure all of it.  I see many smiles during that time.  When getting back to real life, I have relived my trip often and will continue to do that.  But I have had to make myself get back into the stream of ordinary life in the country, without my Daisy Dog.  I also made the decision to sell my camper.  I went out to visit the campgrounds where we usually camped, and could not do it anymore.  I knew it was time to turn some pages to other things.  I have had to do this a number of times in my life.....reinvent yourself some may say.  I am thankful that I am still able to do that.

So I pulled my glamping/badge ring binder out of the closet and will get back into doing badges and projects.  I will not camp and feel it is the right decision.  I sold my camper and am glad to have it out of the yard.  I had three years of fun and memories to carry me on.  I must say that before my trip I had a quilt to machine quilt, several pairs of socks to finish the second sock of each pair, some mittens to finish, and a few scarfs.  I have now completed those things, as well as done activities around the yard and house.  I am cutting out a Christmas flannel quilt which will be tied when put together.  It is from a local shop in Hannibal and will be a joy to have in the living room over the season for years to come.

I have to thank many of my sisterhood people that I could write to and be happy to know through the mail.  I was also pleased to have many write back, many really enjoying getting some snail mail.  I enjoy the chat and also blogging, and email, but for some reason, the snail mail is a true treat.  

Thank you, Mary Jane Butter Ogle, for all you encourage us to do, smiling and enjoying life.  I feel that I am getting back there again.  I am always so encouraged when I receive my magazine, and usually stop what I am doing and just sit and look through it, knowing that later I can devour the stories one by one....like a dessert after a good meal.
Keep up the good work.

I will always miss and remember my dear Daisy Mae Foxhound as I should, but I know that I can go forward with joy of great memories and sweet pictures of her to appreciate.
Thanks to those that understand that loss also.  She really was my bff.

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

FALL LEAVES IN NORTHEAST MISSOURI

I enjoyed getting out for a drive to see some of the color that MO has to offer.  A few are dramatic, the maple, but we need more of them.  It still is nice to get out and enjoy.  Being from Wisconsin, I can appreciate that many of you have more colorful falls, but enjoy yours also while you look at mine please.
 In our little town of New London, Missouri.  We live about six miles out in the country.  Town is under 1000 people.
 My husband by sign at center area park which is named after his mother.
 This is farmgirl 5600 in front of a fall tree in park in New London, MO.
 Oh, the pretty color is just contagious.  I must go home and paint a picture.

Friday, October 16, 2015

PRODUCE.......


This year my garden did not grow well however, due to too much rain in northeast Missouri.  I enjoyed some tomatoes and cucumbers, but few.  However, my apple crop was very good, as well I did get some peaches and some grapes.  

You may ask what do I do with all this stuff.  Well, again, it was a slower and less produce year for me.  We dug potatoes but about half of the rows I planted rotted due to the rain.  I had planted about 145 hills as I was going to give many away.  However, we did get enough for ourselves.  We dig them during the summer months to use, but in the fall, we dig, wash, let dry and then store them in our basement for further use.  They will last us until spring, which means I will have to purchase a few bags before the summer crop.

As far as tomatoes and cucumbers, I am to the point of just growing enough for ourselves, but this year, well, that did not even happen.

The grapes gave me several batches of jelly, which always smells so good when cooking it down to strain and use.  The jars of jelly always shine so sparkly as they sit and cool on my kitchen counter.  Again, I usually get enough to share with others in the family.  Weather was not good for them either.

Our peach trees actually died this year, yes, established trees.  We did get a crop from one nice tree and now it is dying also.  I made pies, jams, cobblers and even froze some for later.  There were very few to share but my daughters each picked a basket full.

Apples were the last harvest.  One tree died, one tree, my granny smith, did not do well, producing only a large bowl of picking, but the wonderful crisps and pies it did make were appreciated.  The other apple trees, two, still have some to pick.  I have made jelly, pies and even fritters from these apples.  Sometimes we just go out for a walk and grab an apple or two on the way past our "friend apple tree".  

So produce was not grand this year, but we still were blessed with some and tried to use it properly.  I trust that those of you who have produce also enjoyed harvest.

Crafting Clothing


Recently I purchased a wonderful book that shows styles of simply sewn clothing, and it has the patterns in a back pouch that you can trace and cut out of tissue paper.  You can make many different items from the same simple dress, blouse, pants and jacket patterns by changing the fabric, colors and just a few things, like ties, sleeves and length.  I have enjoyed making one dress from a soft blue/black pattern of flannel.  It is a tunic dress with elbow length sleeves and a rounded neck line.  I can wear it with nylons, leggings and even pants under it.  It can wear it with flats, heels (I don't own any), or boots.  I can add scarfs, jewelry or a shawl.  This is a good fit for me.

Now I have cut out two blouses and also another dress.  The blouses are red print and then a soft earthy paisley print.  Both can be dressed up or made casual by what you wear them with.  My dress is a black/grey check flannel and I will make long sleeves on this dress.  I am excited to do some clothing sewing that meets my taste and lets me create my wardrobe.  Check out some sewing books, there are many out there, mostly oriental origin.  

It is again fun for me to sew clothing, not just do quilting. My daughters have checked out these books and also say there are things they would sew for themselves or their daughters.  The books give you instructions, different size patterns and ideas for fabric.  Go ahead, start to create for yourself.

Fun In Being Frugal


As I do things around my home, or elsewhere, I am often reminded of my parents, aunts and uncles and grandparents who lived through rough times such as world wars and a great depression.  Just yesterday when making chili, peeling an onion, I recall my Aunt Phyllis always saving the ends of the onion and the peels as she would later use them in soup for flavor.  I must say I have done this somethings and made my own veggie stock for soups and such.  I found that it takes lots of veggies and storage and then time and energy of stove to cook it down and can it, so I no longer do it when I can purchase very good stock at a reasonable price.  

This does not mean that I don't believe in being frugal, and there is always a plan and reason for it.  An example is that I traveled to Paris recently, but I watched my purchases and did not purchase things like expensive perfumes or shoes.  I looked at people's styles in clothings.  Now that I am home, I have been sewing and crocheting and knitting some of these styles and it is a fun challenge, rewarding, and yes, frugal.  I had on my list to check out boots that I saw many wearing, and did just that.  So with all the other frugal things that I did, I was able to purchase a nice pair of leather ankle high black boots that I will wear for years.  Taking care of things is also part of being frugal, and purchasing good products is also a way of making those cared for things last even longer.  I did not mind paying the price I did for these boots, as I had money left from my trip to apply to this purchase.
I also had so much fun with my daughter and granddaughter at the perfume counter in a nice store in our nearest large town, Quincy, Illinois.  We sprayed and smelled and used coffee beans to clear our "smeller" and went around two different counters.  Then I settled on, of course, Paris products, because I so enjoyed my time in France, not just Paris, but many places in France.  This purchase was also wonderful and funds were used again from what I had not spent on expensive meals there.  I enjoyed meals I ate there and some were more expensive, but I did not go out to fancy places each day.  I did purchase some clothing special to the area, like a nice wool jacket, very French in style, by a Paris up and comer.  I will enjoy it for years.  It will also go well with my new black ankle high boots and I will smell grand in my Dior perfume.  

Being frugal  does not mean that you have to always go without the things you like or want but it does mean that you should think about how you will be able to purchase them in a better way.  The sales lady even gave me a small sample bottle of the other perfume I thought about getting, Chanel #5, but I will use the sample, and enjoy it and enjoy for some time the bottle I did purchase.  After all, there are years ahead that I can go shopping again for perfume, I just need to start using the ends of my onions....just maybe.

QUILTING TO LEARN.....


I just finished a red/cream four patch quilt.  I used the front piecing just for relaxing and enjoying the process of quilting.  I also used the fill/backing from my old but good condition mattress pad from my king size bed.  I switched to a full size bed in my sewing room which is also a bedroom.  It just gives me more room to work around.  However, I did miss the size of the bed when I was laying out the quilt to check things on it.  One always gives up something to gain in another area it seems.  It seemed frugal to me to use this mattress pad and it really turned out looking nice.  Plus, I got it out of the storage area of stuff to use again sometime.

This spring I was able to purchase a nice quilting sewing machine, which has the free motion.  I had used it to make a few smaller things, in order to learn how it works, plus practice does make things a bit more perfect.  Of course, I realize everything one makes has some flaw as that is life, and things do not have to be perfect.  It is nice to do the best you can.  I made one other quilt, a brick pattern, and machine quilted it.  This newest project was laid out differently and it made it easier to challenge myself to a better quilting pattern of loops and circles.  I enjoyed doing it and learning as even this 67 year old has lots to learn.  My finished product is wonderful and I must say, my machine and I did a good job.  I still have to embroider my name, Bible verse, and date on my quilt, but here is a photo of it hanging on the clothes line in my rural northeast Missouri home.

Saturday, September 26, 2015

Picture Posting

After a recent trip to France, with lots of photos taken, I am having so much fun posting things a bit at a time to my facebook and other medias.  I also got many, many (1100) prints developed and will work on placing them in four wonderful albums that I purchased a few days ago.  I am learning that taking trips like these means that if you slowly relive the things you did, you are blessed all over again.  When you find people enjoying what you saw and are sharing it is a marvel of how you feel like you are there once again.  What I don't understand is those few, and only a few, who don't comment or comment with sad or harsh things.  Maybe I should just realize that some people are small in their thinking and friendships also.  Anyway, I will post and print and show my pictures and such from France.  My family moved to this country from France years ago, and I am proud to be French, but honored to have been born in America, the greatest country ever.  We should always learn and honor our heritage, and this is what I, at age 67, was and am about doing.  
 Arch of Triumph just across from the Musee Louvre in Paris, France.  Below, I stand before the Musee Louvre.

Friday, September 25, 2015

Country Katie Home from France....

My my my,  this country girl spent eight days in France and feel so very blessed.  I also am glad to be back home in rural Missouri, and was able to pick some apples today and make two pies, one for us and one for neighbors.  As I start to organize and post some photos of my trip on facebook and here, I want to say that I enjoyed the culture and details of things I saw in France.  Little villages in north western France, Normandy area to see the beaches.  I also went North east to Alsace/Lorraine area where my family came from to move to the United States.  I met refugees at the train station.  I could not help but think of years ago that many French people were on the move to leave due to wars and wars and more wars, with my grandparents being some of those people.  I am so thankful to this wonderful country of United States where I was born, who took in so many people from every where.


I visited many interesting places in Paris also, the Louvre and Orsay Musee, the Eiffel Tower and the wonderful Jardin Luxembourg Gardens.  Architecture and culture was wonderful to explore.  This country lady even did some shopping.....I can be in style you know!!!!  After all, I am French.
 Normandy Beaches WWII Cemetery.
Eiffel Tower in Paris, France.

Friday, September 11, 2015

Opportunities to Explore

Opportunities to Explore Life


It is such joy to have opportunities to explore things in life, from creative things, to festivals, to travel and all containing people.  We can learn so much from watching and talking to and mostly listening to people.

This past weekend I helped a knitting circle friend in her booth at the Hannibal, Missouri, Steampunk Festival.  This is a stretch for me to do these types of things, but I try to challenge myself, plus it was an opportunity to get to know Hilly more.  

This was the second year Hannibal hosted a festival of this type.  Wow, what an eye opener to new and interesting ideas and people.  It is like a whole circle of "believers" of steampunk.  I am used to the sisterhood of Mary Jane Farm people, of my church, of my knitting circle, and community, but this was knowledge for learning.  

Also my friend, Hilly, owns and uses a 1904 GearHart sock knitting crank machine to make all of her socks and fingerless gloves on.  She really does great work and did wonderful with sales.  
 1904 GearHart sock knitting crank machine owned by Hilly Jacklin.
My son, Brook Kurth, and his hawk, Ginny.  He is one of 91 licensed falconers in Missouri.  Ginny is a red tail hawk and a hit at the Steampunk Festival. Below are Hilly at the machine and I behind having fun.

Sunday, August 30, 2015

Picture from Wisconsin last season.  I live in Missouri since 1989 but often miss the many colors of fall leaves in Wisconsin, the rustle and the smell of fall.  Wherever you live, get out and enjoy the days ahead.
I will actually be able to spend some time this next month, September, in France, so will be making memories of the sites and smells and sounds there also.  It is good to make memories.

Country Living

COUNTRY LIVING (Not the magazine but my life for real)

This country living is always the best, at least in my opinion.  I know magazines that show places that they call "country living in the city", and I am glad that people fix up there homes in country style and maybe plant a tomato or two, but really, full country living is just that and I am very thankful to be able to live and experience it daily.

With changing some of my life activities around, I will be home more now, not glamping with my Daisy Mae Foxhound who I had to put down (sounds so soft and nice) last week.  I miss her greatly but have wonderful memories.  These memories are made in the country, at camp or at home on the farm.  I have begun taking my long walks again without my Daisy Mae, and just looking up and enjoying the world around me.  I also look down from time to time to mind the snakes and cow pies also.  

Berry season is past, my garden is out, and peaches are done as well as the pears.  I have some apples yet to harvest and also a few more rows of potatoes to dig.  Flowers are fading, and soon some of the leaves will change.  The smell of fall is coming, the rustle of leaves, the cooler mornings and evenings, fires in my patio firepit out back.  All good stuff.  Country stuff.

Winter will bring more indoor activity, but I get out and walk and enjoy my surroundings during this season also.  For now, day by day, I move forward in my country life, and in my life. .  .  my life without my best friend, Daisy Mae Foxhound, but life as I know it now which can still be very good, because I am a Country Katie with Daisy Mae always in my heart.

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Always Country Katie and Daisy Mae

Always Country Katie and Daisy Mae

August 25, 2015, I had to take Daisy Mae, my best friend, into our vet.  In the past four to six months she has gotten progressively more aggressive.  She would not let Roy take off her collar at night and she growled at people who sat next to her.  She was aggressive to our three little elderly doxies, ages 12, 12, and 13.  They did not have to be eating something, taking her spot, really no excuse.  Last night after our dinner, she chased Matilda, age 12, long haired doxie, in the dining room for no reason.  She just simply attacked her.  She was biting her and then had Matilda shaking her like she would a rabbit or squirrel.  About four to six months ago she started killing the rabbits that got into our large fenced in backyard.  She killed one almost daily for some time.  I was concerned that she may try to do something with the dogs, or neighbors cat that comes to visit.  I asked my husband to see about putting up some chicken wire around the lower part of the fence, but he never got at it.  Now, I could have done it myself.  But, not to be angry or blame game, Daisy Mae Foxhound was that, a hound and a hunter.  I don't know why she changed but she did.  

So this morning I had my best friend, Daisy Mae Foxhound put down.  Yes, a hard but right decision.  My vet and I discussed it before she did it and she was proud that I made the decision I did and not take her to the animal shelter so she could go out to a family with pets or small children.  She reminded me that Daisy was my friend and I was her friend and we had 3 1/2 years of good life together.  She was my "glamping" partner, and right now I am not sure I will continue to camp.  But I will give it some time.  Yes, I have my three doxies, but Daisy Mae and I were very close , and she was probably the best and most special dog I ever had.  I will carry her in my memory.  I believe dogs do not go to heaven, but her memory will always go with me.  As I sat in my camper today and cried hard and long, I will give it some time to work through, not past.  I do not want to pass on Daisy. ....my best friend forever....and when I write on my blog, Country Katie and Daisy Mae, I will always be thinking of her.  I do not plan to change my blog name.  I had to make a tough choice today about my friend, but I do not have to erase her from my life.  So for now, this saddened Country Katie and my sweet memories of Daisy Mae will sign off.  Thanks for listening, especially all you dog owners.

Friday, August 21, 2015

Getting on Facebook

Facebook Entry

Roy, my husband, finally decided he would do facebook.  So I told him it was easy to get on....well, maybe for some, but we sat a long time, a long time, to get it all done, and then today he still was not registered with his email account so we had to do that all over.  We did not know that you could not have two fb on the same email, but it all worked out after we made a couple of calls to our 17 year old grandson that knows everything about computers it seems.  Thank you, John.  

I have to say that it was fun helping Roy get on with learning about facebook.  He seemed to have lots of fun learning to upload photos and make lists of friends.  When the friends came in as confirming him as a friend, it was fun to watch him count and then, sadly, I showed him that the number of friends was right on the screen.  

This new journey for him should be good for him as his doctor is sending him to a specialist on Wednesday of next week.  They are believing he has early stages of Alzheimer Disease.  We will know more in a week or so, but tests he has done so far were not so great.  Actually he said, "Well, I failed."  

He also is going to audit a class at our local college, and has already read the book.  He seems so excited about it and I believe he will do well with it.  A couple of years ago I did some classes and really did enjoy it.  I am glad that he is going to make a try of this.  I plan to take a picture of him on his first day of school (again) at age 70, and email it to our local television station that has been putting first day pictures on their morning news reports.  It would be fun to see him on there.  He just laughed when I said that I was planning to do that.

Facebook entry turned out to work, and it was a good time to teach my husband a new thing to keep his mind active and learning.  Note that I have seen things he is forgetting and he mentioned some things also, but for now, facebook, college class, and hope for some time for using that mind before it goes it's own way.

From the caregiver spouse of the future....thanks for listening.

Saturday, August 15, 2015

Glamping- Katie and Daisy Mae Style

Glamping-Katie and Daisy Mae Style

I just got home from a five day camping time again at my favorite place, Frank Russell Recreational Area, a Federal site, where I get to stay for only $9.00 a night, including my electricity.  It is because it is a federal site and I possess an America The Beautiful card for seniors, so all are half price, which means $18.00 a night for others, which is also cheaper then most places.

This area is fun, relaxing, in the woods mostly, has lots of walking areas and wooded paths also, paths down to Mark Twain Lake if you want to fish or swim, and even a nice pond with pretty geese to visit and also watch great sunsets.  Daisy and I like ending our day heading to the pond to watch the sunset, and then head back to the camper.

We cook on a small gas grill or over the open fire, and sometimes even on my three burner stove in the camper.  I like to sit under the trees and read, knit, or do quilting.  Daisy likes to rest and watch me, always with one eye part way open to also watch for squirrels, rabbits, turkey, and other things that venture our way....maybe even the gatekeeper friends Julie and Dianna who often stop and visit, or a park ranger, or a family member stopping in.  

This was my sixth camping trip this season and each were five days.  I find it so interesting that on my way home, after being out at the campsite, that when driving through the only town I have to drive through, 500 people population, I tell myself, "Wow, look at all the houses and people".  Really, how one gets used to being in the wilderness and enjoying it so much.

Have to go, my oven is telling me my peach cobbler is done baking.  Happy camping.

Friday, July 31, 2015

Black and White Photos


Ansel Adams is a well known photography that captured many natural photos in black and white.  So when I am teaching a photography class this coming week, I am going to follow his examples and do some black and white shots with the students so they can see how outstanding some topics look in black and white over color.  It seems to me that some objects just stand out, pop off the page, take center stage, when you use this contrast form.  

                                         My Granddaughter, Alorah.
                                          Trees and sky.
                                          Sidewalk around pond at sunset.
                                         Wonderful Canadian geese in black and white.

Gratitude

In working on my Mary Jane Farm Merit Badges, I finished one on Gratitude.  I have worked on parts of it for months now.  One of the things to do for the badge was to read "The Book of Awesome".  It was very interesting.  I have also wrote notes to newspapers and friends and relatives and storekeepers to thank them and encourage them.  I enjoy writing old-fashioned notes that have to have a stamp and go by "snail-mail".  I enjoy it because I also appreciate and enjoy when people write me back.  There is just something special about holding a piece of mail in your hand that someone held in theirs and wrote to "you" on.  I enjoyed using cards that I had made from photos that I take so abundantly.  I also did a merit badge on photography.  Even with doing photography for years, there were things that I learned during this badge.  I am grateful for all the fun things that I have to do by being in the sisterhood of Mary Jane Farm.

So my challenge to all of you is to post on facebook, your blog, or by snail mail to others about being grateful for things in life.  There is so much to be thankful for.  I am thankful for all of you who will be reading this.  Blessings and gratitude to you.

Saturday, July 25, 2015

COUNTRY KITCHENS.....Katie Style 

My husband and I like auctions and used book sales also.  He has a thing for purchasing boxes of old magazines such as Country Living, Martha Stewart, etc.  He never has found any Mary Jane Farm at these sales and I tell him it is because we all keep those magazines as "cherished goods".  Anyway, I have four stacks on my bottom bookshelf and take several at a time out to peruse through, keeping what I want in my idea folder stash, and putting the rest in paper recycle bin.  As I have looked through many of these magazines through the years, I got to thinking, Katie Style Country Kitchen is okay by me, and this morning as he headed out the door to an auction, I sat "working" on another cup of coffee and looking around at my kitchen.  So I am giving you a peek into my home, no magazine purchase needed...not even at auction price.






Sunday, July 19, 2015

CAMPING

During my last camping time, we had heat, rain, and some breeze, but you always make the best of what is given you as a farmer and that is what we did.  We enjoyed outdoors and then rested from the heat or rain inside my wonderful camper.  Daisy Mae Foxhound would watch me quilt or knit, and she most often enjoyed my tea/coffee times with some oreos, her (well, mine also) favorite break time.  

I finished my hand pieced Grandma's Flower Garden English Paper Piecing (size 1.5 inch hexagons) during this camping time.  I started it in the camper last August by cutting the squares and learning to hem them and then piece seven together to form a flower of hexagons which measured 1.5 inches each.  I used prints of the Downton Abbey fabric and background of unbleached muslin.  It is so pretty.  When I finished the last edge pieces I called my husband to tell him.  Of course, he was not as excited about it as I was.  I then had a nice glass of wine and toasted my quilt, my work accomplishment, and my Daisy Mae Foxhound.  Then I folded it up and set it aside.  I still have to put the batting in and backing all pinned together, another big step, and then hand quilt around each and every hexagon.  The final touch will be hand stitching the front and back together with a binding or just the pieces.  Lots to do yet, but the joy of quilting to me is the process.  It teaches me that all of life has process.

It has been a process for me to get to a point of retirement where I can camp, quilt more, enjoy time by myself with my Daisy Mae of course.

I also found this trip to be full of new acquaintances, women campers. I camp during the week, and there were two sites with families, two sites with fishermen, and then a site with a woman and her ten year old son, and another woman and her dear dog, Merlin.  I enjoyed getting to know Clarie and Merlin.  She was camping all the states west of the Mississippi, coming from Texas, after she retired.  We will keep in touch and maybe plan a camping meet for next year.  The newest set of gatekeepers are a couple who also love to camp,  Julie and Dianna, who recently retired.  They have camped lots and thought this a nice way to spend part of their camping days, volunteering as gatekeepers three days per week, but then being able to camp at the same site the other days through the season.  I enjoyed getting to know them and will see them through the season as I go camping in this park about twice a month.  They also have a wonderful dog named Ace....so my Daisy Dog made new friends also.
Daisy Mae Foxhound after an afternoon nap.  She needs to be under the covers even in the summer, but I do have air conditioning in my camper, so the breeze was blowing on her.....excuses for my child.

x

FIVE DAY "GLAMPING" TIME

Daisy Mae Foxhound and I went camping for five days at our favorite spot only 16 miles from our farm.  This pretty butterfly kept us company for two days.  We also enjoyed many wild flowers such as this large field of Black-eyed Susans which happen to have been my grandmother's favorite flower and my son is partial to them also.  I had a great plan to set up my tripod and take photos of Daisy Dog and I among the flowers, only going to the front edge as not to disrupt them.  Then when doing this "thought", I realized I would have to lift my 55 pound dear friend up for the shot.  She does not look to comfy, but we did have a great time.                                                                                                                                               


Saturday, July 11, 2015

FLOWER POWER IN MY ACREAGE....

Today I spent some time with my camera capturing the pretty flowers that my yard shows off each year.  Even with this wet, too wet, year in N.E. Missouri, the flowers have done pretty good.  Now the garden, fruit trees and even my dogwood tree have died, but like me, enjoy some of the flower power, and beauty.




Friday, July 10, 2015

Sewing Day

Sewing Day = Fun




Repurposed cutter quilts made into totes, even making a yoga mat/quilt tote and gym bag so I now can go to the YMCA in the style that Country Katie should go.  

Monday, July 6, 2015

Not Old Age

Not Old Age.....I know it!!!!


Okay, I am 67 but a young 67 for sure.  I have overcome so many things in life and am a better person for it.  I am strong and well, but sometimes my body has issues.  It is, like the title, not old age, well not all of it for sure.

Today I had to have impressions on top and bottom teeth as I have some tooth lose in back and need to have some partials put in place due to this situation causing my TMJ to get worse.  We are trying to avoid surgery.  I have such a wonderful dentist who I have gone to for over 25 years now.  I know this is not old age, but old job injury.  I used to work in law enforcement and it so happens that in a fight with a man high on cocaine, I was hit several times, and once in my left jaw, thus TMJ has set in.  Well, I can report that I got in a few swings also.

I switched out all my shoes, well, keeping a few pair with good arch supports placed in them.  I now have all wonderful, but expensive shoes with help for my plantar fascitis.  This problem is not old age either.  I have begun yoga again after 20 some years and do it regularly, and have good balance, but this good balance does stretch the muscles and putting all the weight on one leg and then the other seems to have helped this situation along.  I know that the stronger I get the less it will hurt.  I also know that having these new shoes is helping.....all seven pair.

There are a few other things going on with my 67 year old body, but mostly, I am doing fantastic.  I swim laps at the YMCA and do yoga for an hour two times a week and some at home in between.  I walk my Daisy Mae Foxhound several times daily.  I camp, garden, swim in my pool at home.  I also do things for creativity like painting, sewing, quilting, knitting, and gardening and like cooking as well.  I eat right and think I am seeing the benefits of all of this, because it is not old age, it is just being 67, which is not 27.  I really don't even want to go that direction again.  In fact, 67 is a pretty great age.


Sunday, July 5, 2015

Blogging Times

Blogging for My Merit Badge (MJF)

As a member of the sisterhood for Mary Jane Farm, I have worked on a number of merit badges.  I have been working for some time now on this blogging merit badge.  I have checked out sites, read so many I did like and some, well, just average.  I would call my blog just average also, but I do have fun with it.

I suggest reading a Blogging For Bliss book by Tara Frey.  It is part of what I had to read for my merit badge.  I also enjoyed reading and using Blogging for Dummies which helped me get started and continue my blogging.  

Yes, there is email, facebook, and all the others plus things like pinterest and our church even has it's own facebook page for members.  All have their place, but this blogging is something I believe I will continue more than the others.  I am hoping that I will progress in what I write and do and maybe be able to design some.

Happy blogging.

Dying for Natural Color

Dying for Natural Color


As an avid knitter, and basically a lover of yarns and color, I decided it was time, knitting for 55 years now, to try something new.  I did not want to spin, but did check it out, but I wanted to try my hand at dying yarns.  I ordered some "bare" (white) yarn and then thought which color did I want.  It came to me while cleaning wild black raspberries.  They have such a wonderful dye.  So I cooked about 1 cup of smashed berries, as not to waste too many for eating and jam, I thought this would be sufficient for my project.  I did not have a recipe, but had talked with several other people who dye things.  I proceeded to wet the yarn in the sink, and then I drained the water, poured the strained juice on the yarn and added a little water.  I did not want a really dark color, but got the result I was looking for.  I am calling it, "soft berry on the wild side" and will knit myself some socks with it...now that I have wound it into balls.   Just fun and new.

Monday, June 29, 2015

Glamping Good Time....with my BFF


Daisy Mae Foxhound and I headed out with our camper to our favorite spot at Frank Russell Recreational Area.  It is only 16 miles from home, and it is a federally owned place, so with an America The Beautiful Card for being a senior (cost of $10.00 for lifetime) I can camp for only $9.00 per night, and that is with electricity.  

Now ladies, I glamp, but with my Daisy Mae as my camper is a 23 foot Prowler and is only 20 years old this year.  It is such a nice camper, with bathroom, shower, and kitchen area, couch and then a bedroom.  I enjoy the room and the cozy way I have it fixed up.  This time camping we had to spend more time indoors due to heat and then rain, so I did some English Paper Piecing and other embroidery and some knitting.  Daisy rested and we also had tea and oreos together several times.

Between rain drops and storms, we did get to do lots of walking and take lots of photos.  I usually print my photos and make cards with them.  They make nice gifts for friends and family.  Some people actually write back to me on my notes I gave them.  I find that a compliment.

During this time of four nights, and five days, we also were treated with company.  My camper friend was there for some nice walking together.  During those walks we talked lots about Mary Jane Farm and she actually did look it up on line and said she "joined something".  I am not sure what she joined, but I believe once she gets going, she will get hooked like so many of us country ladies have.  Art and Kathy stopped in and visited for two hours with me.  We sat around the picnic table and had such a great time.  Daisy Mae was so excited to see them.  They had been the gatekeepers for two of the three years I have camped out there.  They would always have treats for Daisy Mae.  As Kathy felt badly that she did not have a treat for Daisy and for Daisy Mae who kept looking for one from her, I was able to slip into the camper and sneak one out to Kathy to give to Daisy Mae Foxhound.  I don't know who enjoyed this more, Kathy or Daisy Dog.  Then with a tornado warning and heading to the large concrete shower rooms, I met up with some old neighbors who had moved away to Florida, but were back for a few weeks camping in a nearby camp grounds with no shelter.  We had a good visit and so did our dogs while waiting out the bad weather.

We say geese, turkey, pilated woodpeckers and deer.  I so enjoy the wildflowers and all the different types of trees.  Each time I see the black-eyed Susan I recall how much my dear Granny loved that flower.  I suppose it is why I have a large bed of it at home because I loved my Granny so much.  

Memories thought about, memories talked about, and memories made, all while "glamping" for 4 nights, 5 days close to home.

While there I also worked on my jacket with MJF patches for the sisterhood projects.  It is fun being an "adult scout".  



Saturday, June 20, 2015

Katie, Katie, How Does Your Garden Grow.....


Summer in Missouri of 2015 has not been a great garden year.  I had lots of plans and lots of planting, but unlike many parts of the country and like many also, we are with those that have had lots of rain, and more rain, and less sunshine this year, at least so far.
I have great hopes that it will get better.

My 110 hills of potatoes, well........we dug some for dinner last week and they were okay, but now they are rotting in the ground.  My husband dug some from the garden and they were rotten, and from the potato patch in the old horse paddock (which always grows our most and best potatoes), well, they actually had mold on some of the skins.  So we will be digging our potatoes in a few days before they are all lost.  The plants in the garden are yellow now so we have lost those, about 40 plants.  

I actually had to put on my mud boots and sink into the garden to pick peas and cut lettuce, but we did enjoy the produce.  I cut all the rhubarb and froze it.  We had eaten plenty already, and I am very pleased with how it did this year.  I do hope that the wet weather will not ruin it.  I have it hilled and on the dry side of the garden.  

Tomatoes, peppers are not doing too well either.  My eggplant looks like it is dying.  Now the cucumbers are in the middle of the garden and seem to be driest and doing okay, with nice blooms which is a promise of some produce.  

Even the trees are affected.  Several newer trees, maybe two years planted, are dying, such as my tulip tree and dogwood tree and flowering crab and two new peach trees.  It is just sad to see all of this.  

However, with all of our troubles, I am even more concerned for the farmer's crops, which we are of that group also.  We do not even have soybeans in yet, and the corn is not looking promising.  Some of the farmers will have to till their corn under and it really is too late to plant so I suppose if they can afford it, they will plant soybeans.  

We have a very nice family as neighbor farmers who moved here three years ago from South Africa, where they had a large farm.  My poor neighbors have had three years of strange farming.  Actually when visiting with them the other day, he said, "first year, drought; second year, good; and third year, ugly", then he laughed and shook his head saying , "well, we have had the good, bad and ugly, so it has to get better".  

Farmers continue to amaze me, as they usually seem to have good hopes and spirits.  I am so thankful for all the work and effort they all do to feed our country and lots of the world.  So as you enjoy your food, and please buy local if you can as it is good for you and also the economy in your area, please thank a farmer.  And with that said and knowing you will, I say for my husband and I and our many farming neighbors....you are all welcome.

Friday, May 29, 2015

Something Special About Country Living

Yes, I enjoy this country living.  Not everyone can go out and clean their "glamper" in their nightgown because they also need to brush their foxhound before getting themselves dressed.  Then I did get dressed, hung out some rugs on my wonderful clothes line.  They are all nice and clean for my next camping trip, which is next week actually.  After that I headed out to hoe my potato patch in my nice cool denim sundress and barefoot.  Looking a little like a hick to some, but so very comfortable.  Besides, I really did look pretty classy as I had on earrings and a necklace and a nice hairstyle.  My patch is behind the shed with some trees around so stays wet longer then the large garden which is in the sun.  With the rain we have had recently, my patch really did need some hoeing to get weeds and grass out and more hilling to the lovely plants.  I do think potato plants have such a nice deep green color.  

After all that I took in a nice swim, in our pool, no, just because I am country, does not mean I swim in our fish pond or a river near to us or even a creek.  I must say that when Daisy Mae Foxhound and I head over to the farm 1/2 mile away, we do enjoy wading in the creek.  Actually I enjoy it more then she does.  She usually tries to stay on the rocks.
She seems to be somewhat of an elegant hound.  

Besides those things, I was able to do a little knitting this early morning and watch the news, drink some coffee and enjoy the start of the day.  I was also able to finish my embroidery sampler which I did as a pillow top and which I also designed and did for one of the embroidery badges for Mary Jane Farm Sisterhood badges.  That was done several different sittings in the afternoon while my Daisy Mae napped next to me in our oversized recliner.  I did purchase an oversized recliner so we could be together and comfy when she turned one year....wow...now she is three.  After all of that I headed to my sewing table and did some piecing of strips of my brick pattern quilt.  I have 10 of the 20 strips put together and it is looking so nice....all floral prints.  I will do the backing with a nice soft green piece with gardening tools and small flowers on.  My dear daughter in love purchased 4 yards of this at a thrift store in our local area for only $1.00.  You just can't do better then that.  

Productive, quiet, calm, peaceful, happy, creative day in my little part of the world.  Trusting you had a good one also.  It is soon to be June.  Enjoy.

Monday, May 25, 2015

Second Glamping Trip of the 2015 Season

Glamping time for Daisy Mae Foxhound and I was wonderful.  It was during the week for three nights, four days, and we were one of two sites filled.  Of course, with the holiday weekend, things were booked up.  I am blessed to be retired and go camping during the week, so I was there Sunday afternoon after church until Wednesday at about 2:00.  You have to clear the site by 4:00, but I am not a "last minute" person, and besides, it had started to rain some.

Daisy Mae and I had a wonderful time of walking and resting, and campfires.  On Monday night my husband, son and his family came out for a hotdog roast and smores.  We had such a great time.  We then walked to the camp pond and watched the sunset, only after taking turns rolling log style down the pond bank.  It is great fun, and this old farmgirl can still keep up with the best and youngest of them.  In fact, some of the middle agers won't even try it.  I keep telling them that they sure do miss out on lots of life by thinking they are too old or too dignified or just too something.  Live it up is what I say.  It sure does make me smile to take a roll or two down the pond bank.

My friend Becky, who walks the campgrounds with her little dog daily, stopped to visit us two different times.  We then walked our precious dogs together.  I so enjoy walking my Daisy Mae Foxhound and will share some of the time with a good camper walker friend and her dog.  She even asked when I would be back out, and I told her May 31 for three nights and four days.  She said she would look forward to sitting a bit and having some morning coffee.  

One late afternoon just as I was about to light our nightly campfire, getting the coals down so I could make a meal, I heard this terrific cries of some birds that I know I have heard before.  Shortly after this, two pileated woodpeckers eye-balled me as they flew right over my head and then the camper.  I jumped into the camper to get my camera, thinking maybe they would turn back or stop on a tree.  I was blessed to have one do just that and I got a nice shot.  You are blessed to hear them, and see them at a distance, but so close and right over me.  I felt honored.

During my glamping time I did lots of eating, sleeping, walking, but also lots of reading, knitting, some embroider of badges onto my denim jacket, and I did two oil paintings.  It was a good time to have a short respite from my farm woman country life, and enjoy the outdoors in a different way then I do at home.




Saturday, May 16, 2015

"Glamping"


Yes, and yeah, and yippy.  I am mostly packed and ready to head off after church tomorrow to my second "glamping" days.  I try to go every few weeks, and I go close enough to home that I can do this easily.  I also go "glamping" which, as most of you know is glamour camping.  My camper is a 1995 so is not a vintage and this seems to mean I cannot camp with the MaryJane Farm glampers, but it is okay, as I have my camper decorated as I like, and I enjoy my time with my Daisy Mae Foxhound.  

My camper is 23 feet long.  As you enter, you go to the left and I have a nice bathroom with a two door closet, a stole, sink and medicine cabinet, and a tub/shower.  I like this as then I do not have to go out in the middle of the night or the rain.  I think it is a great safety feature for me.

When you first walk into the camper, you enter the kitchen where I have plenty of cabinets, a double sink, a three burner stove and oven, and a refrigerator and top separate door freezer.  After this you go into a couch and table benches area with cabinets above and storage under.  The couch makes into a bed, single size and over the table you can have another bed fold out if you want.  I don't even have a foam mattress in that area but use the area for storage cabinets for towels and games and candles, etc.  I really don't have too many people stay over and have even had my husband fix the table more secure to the wall, so it does not come down and make into a bed either.  If it did, it would be a double bed.  so I could actually sleep six people because.....after this living area, I actually have a separate bedroom with a folding closing door, which I don't ever close as my Daisy Dog and I are the only ones there.  It has a full size bed, which is always up, and I like this as I would not enjoy having to take down the table to go to bed each night.  I do enjoy my afternoon naps or just laying down and reading on the "already up" bed.  I have shelves for books and another large shelve unit for "stuff".  There is also a nice size closet in this bedroom.  

So you can see I am set when I go "glamping".  I have old wicker chairs painted white for sitting outside, plus a nice old lounge chair for Daisy Mae Foxhound.  I have a round wooden table and two chairs that I place under the canopy of the camper.  I decorate all with lace, quilts, teapots and cups, lanterns, and baskets.  Inside I also use teacups, placemats with lace and crocheting.  I have embroidered dish towels and crocheted potholders and dish clothes.  I also have doilies on the shelves hanging down so you can see all the pretty work.  I use cloth napkins, and handmade aprons.  Even some of my bath towels have embroider and crocheting on them. I use china plates and glassware and specially nice utensils and pots and pans.  I do use my cast iron on the fire outside, but always make things look "vintage" and keep to the glamour camping.

During my time camping, when Daisy Mae and I are not walking and taking photos and just enjoying nature, I am knitting, writing, reading, painting, and quilting.  I don't take a computer and have gone back to my flip phone as it gets better reception then my smart phone did, and thus I don't have the internet.  I almost always hope people don't call me, and I often just make arrangements for some people to come out one of the three nights I am camping, for dinner, but not to stay over.

I have had my grandson go camping with me twice in three years and my granddaughter has also gone twice.  I am okay with this as I call it "making memories", but I never invite them for more then one night, and I don't invite just anyone  to show up.  This is my time with my Daisy and my GOD and I want it that way.
I worked hard in difficult jobs for many years and helped and dealt with so many people problems, that this is my time and I don't make apologizes for it.

If you have not thought about "glamping" and don't want to tent or vintage trailer camp, just think about doing it your way, with a more updated camper that you can still make your own.  This past year I took down the very popular looking camper curtains and tossed them and made some wonderful lace curtains which make all look lighter and more "me".  You can do it also.  

Friday, May 8, 2015

Rainy Day's are Wonderful

Today it is raining in my corner of the world and my corner of the state of Missouri, which is the northeast corner.  This is wonderful.  We need the rain, really we do, as do other places.  I am glad and thankful as a farmer and also as a gardener and outdoors person.  It will help my "garden grow" and no, my name is not Mary, Mary.

Rainy days during spring and summer are also helpful to the person who is outdoors lots, either working, walking, camping.  It means a day indoors to do other things, like staying in my pj's while I watch some morning news and knit on my wonderful gold colored baby alpaca/silk scarf. I only have four more sections and it will be finished.  I plan to use it as a "staple" item on my fall trip to France.  Oh, it is so richly soft and pretty also.  

I also have a carrot/raisin cake in the oven and will make cream cheese frosting for it after it is totally cooled.  It does smell wonderful as I sit here typing away and sipping nice Downton Abbey Republic of Tea from Hannibal's Java Jive.  It is called Mrs. Patmore's Pudding Tea and is black tea, with sweet blackberry leaves, natural caramel and vanilla flavoring, and carob bits.  It smells and tastes wonderful.  It can be ordered online so try it out if you don't have a classy coffee spot near you.  My spot is pretty coffee shop style and is owned by a young lady, good business woman, plus being a young wife and mother of small children.  She was just honored as one of the outstanding ladies in our community that own businesses.  Yes, Katie, way to go!

My handwash items are done in the washer with a great handwash cycle.  I really do enjoy the nice conveniences we have as homemakers and do not want to go back to old fashion things, but how I do like the old fashion and vintage decor and  clothing.  My camper is all "glamped" out with things like that as is my home.  But, again, even with clothes lines and such, I like good washers and driers and dishwashers and refrigerators.  Recently walking at the farm and collecting flat creek bed rocks for a friend's patio, I took some nice shots of the farm families old ice house.  This was probably built in the mid 1800's as the farmhouse was built in 1852.  So nice to go to my refrig, even in my camper and get out ice cubes.  

Enjoy your rain if you are receiving some, enjoy your conveniences, and most of us do have some or lots, and mostly enjoy your day.  Work on some baking, knitting, quilting, reading or even a nap.  I think I will do that after I get my four dogs their baths.  Good day for that as they already get wet smelling with going outdoors.

Monday, April 20, 2015

Aprons

To my family, I am a person with many aprons, yes, aprons.  I wear them almost always when I am cooking and also when I am baking.  I enjoy making pies and breads and seem to get lots of flour everywhere.  I have a great time and my aprons show it.  I have about eight hanging on a large hook in my kitchen pantry.  I also have two hanging on a nice hook in my "glamper" so I can have them while cooking, even over a camp fire.  

Recently I pulled them all out and washed and hung them on the outside line to dry.  They looked so pretty that I took some photos and will try to download one on this post.  As I am not that knowledgeable about the process, I will tell you that I will try.

Today I had the wonderful privilege of spending the day with my 12 year old granddaughter and her mother, my wonderful daughter in love, Kathy.  Kathy had asked me to come help Alorah sew an apron for her Project Fair sewing project.  She has made many wonderful things, but Kathy felt that in my helping Alorah sew this apron, we would also make memories.  And, I must say we did.  We had some great conversation, and laughed and even had lunch together along with her mother and brother. 

Alorah, soon to be 13, still likes Grandma time, and I feel blessed.  The memories we made today will stay with me always.  I will enjoy seeing her wear her apron.  I even got a few scraps of the fabric to put into my next crazy quilt.  As I had just made a really nice full apron, I wore it to visit them.  This helped me with earning my badge on aprons with Mary Jane Farms Sisterhood.  It also was fun to do.  I also wore this apron to my knitting circle to show it off as it is so very special.  The print is "aprons" and I purchased this print from our local famous quilting shop in Hannibal, Missouri.  It is called "Hickory Stick" and has been featured in quilting magazines.  I did note that they had similar fabric at Hobby Lobby, so check it out and have fun making your own apron.  Really, they are fun and fancy, and very useful.