Thursday, April 30, 2009

Everyday is an Adventure

Some days I wake up pumped and ready to go and other days I have to work diligently to be able to get things done. This morning, I woke with a song in my heart...I think it was the Go-Go's "We got the Beat".

My adventures in putting together quilt kits has been more time consuming then I thought it would be (insert laughter here). It's been fun, but it's also been a lot of work! I'm almost done, now for me to cut out all of the appliques pieces- I saved the most time consuming part for the end.

I'm also going to put together some card making kits and then ship them to myself in England, ink, paper, scissors, paper trimmer and stamps, you know- the works! I'm looking at bringing my acrylic stamps and block versus bringing wood mounted stamps because of weight issues. I have some awesome clear stamps from MSE, not to mention that I will be shipping ALL of my pre-made cards to myself- I want to have them there and ready to use! Which reminds me, I also need to make some address labels (another thing on my "to do before we move" list).

Another part of my adventure is being able to "relate" to people. So far the only people who can truly relate to me are other military spouses. My own mother, mother-in-law and some of my civilian girlfriends can't begin to comprehend the amount of stress I've been under. There are days when I can sing songs of praise and other days when I just want to scream. Just so you know, today is a singing day :-)

Quote of the Day

For I have learned in whatever state I am in, to be content. I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want.
-Philippians 4:11-12 NKJV

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

It's Hump Day! (aka middle of the week)

It's foggy this morning but it's supposed to burn off and warm up to a balmy 60ºF today- woohoo! I hope that it does because then I can use the new wheelbarrow and get some cedar mulch spread out on my English flower garden in the backyard. I long to work outside in my flower beds, getting them prepared for the coming months.

With that said I also need to knuckle down and finish my camera straps and get them listed on my Etsy site! I am making myself do that today!!!

Where are those kids of mine? I hope that they are getting ready for school- good thing we live less than 4 miles away from the school too, LOL!

Quote of the Day

Giving encouragement to others is a most welcome gift, for the results of it are lifted spirits. increased self-worth, and a hopeful future.
-Florence Littauer

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

It's Tuesday Gromit!

It's been a better than average kind of day for me. I'm a firm believer that things happen for a reason- and today, God most certainly had a reason why things happened the way they did.

A girlfriend took me to the car rental store and everything happened from there....

My rental car was not there when I arrived at the car rental store so they gave me a SUV- fine by me! I got to have it for most of the day and with that...I went to Sam's Club to see if they carried that super cool wheelbarrow I saw in their spring catalog. I was happy to see that they did! I take the ticket up from to have the sales clerk ring up the sale and I asked another clerk if she could get one of the guys to help me with the parts -there was the barrow part and the rest of it came in a box. I waited for a bit and there it was...the salesman had one all put together for me :-) I didn't have to put it together, I got one that was done :-) It was my lucky day! Then as I was at the tailgate of the SUV another young man who worked at the Store saw me and asked me if I would like some help getting it into the back of the truck, I said "thank you yes". And he put it in the back of the truck. I drove off happy as a clam and took my new prize home. After unloading the wheel barrow, I went out to the quilt shop to find flannel printed fabric that would be suitable to make a lambie out of, found some adorable polka dot fabric and it was on sale for 25% off- this is getting sweeter by the minute! I went to another quilt shop and found flannel on clearance for the whopping low price of $3.00 a yard- woohoo! This day gets better and better!

I turned in the SUV and got what I thought was to be my rental car for the next month. But then one of the guys tells me to come back on Friday as they will have some more cars, ones that are clean. That's right, they are going to switch out my car again. I'm not bothered by this at all, actually it makes me happy to know that there are people out there who believe that customer service is #1 and making their customers happy is a top priority.

But wait I'm not done yet! I take my M.E. quilt top and backing to be professionally quilted by Vicky over at Cakes and More in Rapid City (love that shop of hers as it always smells like chocolate). I'm looking for a posey flower kind of pattern and she doesn't have one- many other floral patterns but not what I'm looking for. She gives me 2 web sites that she orders from and asks me to look at them when I get home. I get home and there's the new hard drive for Hannah's laptop- I get it installed and them start the boot up process and am side tracked by that. Vicky calls me and asks me if I'd had a chance to look at either of the websites yet I had to tell her know that again I got sidetracked with other stuff. She lets me know that she thinks that she's found what I'm looking for, I hop on my handy dandy desk top, go to the website and there it is...the posy flowers. Perfect! She's ordering the pattern so she can quilt my quilt top, Now how awesome is that? There it is, another business person giving 110% to customer service! She does excellent work and I'd recommend her to any and everyone I know that quilts! Which reminds me, I've got to get my batik quilt backing sewn together...I've got that on my Wednesday to do list ;-)

Quote of the Day

If you're content to simply be yourself, your life will count for plenty.
-Matthew 23:11 the message

Monday, April 27, 2009

What a day!

It was a go, go, go faster kind of morning for me, but a good one at the same time. My 9:30 appointment bought the car- woohoo! That's one big thing to check off my list of things to do. By having sold the car it also has me checking off "5" other things from my list (yes it was all car related stuff). I have a rental car set up for me to pick up tomorrow morning and I have a girlfriend taking me to the car rental place. Life is good!

I feel as if a load has been lifted from my shoulders (again). Another task completed in preparation for the move. Now to sell the big screen TV and the house.

I'm putting together quilting kits for myself in preparation for the move. Cutting the fabric pieces and getting them ready ready to go into large Ziploc bags. I can't begin to tell you how much fun I'm having doing this for myself. I plan on shipping these kits to myself and having them waiting for me on the other side of the ocean. I find myself thinking a lot these days about having things in place for when I get there. This is just one step to make sure that I have things there. I'm also bringing some stamping and paper crafting supplies with me while I wait it out for my household goods shipment. I need to have fun crafting stuff with me, don't you? I'll also bring some counted cross stitching stuff to work on. Got to keep busy or at least the appearance of it anyway, LOL!


I woke up this morning from a dream that has left me thinking about how busy I am all of the time and laughing at it at the same time. You see, I dreamt that I was in that reality show The Amazing Race. But this show was called "Sandie's Amazing Race" and how I was trying to accomplish dozens of tasks in a set period of time before our move to England. Keep in mind that while I was preforming the tasks I was also trying to maintain a household, keeping my kids happy, myself happy and not lose my mind when technical difficulties occurred. I've read that dreams come from your subconscious and that they stem from things that weigh heavily on your mind. That said, that still doesn't explain the part where I'm perched on a marshmallow floating down a stream of chocolate milk.

With coffee in hand I greet the day with a smile and wait to see what happens. Lets see how many items I get through on my "to do" list today. Will I sell the Subaru today? Will a bona fide offer be made on our house today? Who knows. What I do know is this... I welcome the day that God has made and I step forth into the light of his love and I let him guide me.

Quote of the Day

Everyone has inside himself a piece of good news! The good news is that you really don't know how great you can be, how much you can love, what you can accomplish and what your potential is.
-Anne Frank

Sunday, April 26, 2009

What a weekend!

This weekend has been rather hectic to say the least. My daughters hard drive ceased working while she was working on her science fair project. I had a hard time with her uncontrollable sobbing. And of course my computer decides that it no longer wants to read my SD card from either of my digital cameras- nice huh? So there I was on line with Dell tech support. I managed to fix my computer- had to take off the side panel and tweak with some wires on the inside. I managed to do this and I lived to tell about it, LOL! Hannah's computer unfortunately is toast. Dell is sending out a new hard drive and I will have to install it and all of the software- this shall be a challenge as I am not tech savvy in the least. But it's learning experience and I can follow directions and understand the instructions on how to preform the task. I did it once, I'm sure I can do it again.

On Saturday I went grocery shopping -which made my kids happy (they were missing having extra nibbles in the house), went to the hobby store last minute to get things for Hannah's science fair project. I also bought myself a cute baby quilt pattern which makes me think of RAF Croughton (it's sheep themed).

On Sunday- It snowed, lots and lots of heavy wet snow. I'll say it, I've had my fill of snow and it will be something that I will not miss whatsoever! Hannah and I worked for a solid 45 minutes shoveling that heavy wet snow from the driveway, front walkway and front porch. Andrew meanwhile took his sweet time getting ready and by the time he finally came out Hannah and I had already finished. I started working on a new quilt project this one is made with flannel, what else can I tell new realtor showed our house to a prospective buyer and my phone has been ringing like crazy with people inquiring about the car we have for sale in the newspaper. I have a couple coming out from Spearfish tomorrow morning to look at it.

So that's it, my weekend was one emergency situation after another. I do lead a rather non-glamorous life now don't I ? LOL! I'm ready for a glass of wine and a long hot soak in the tub!

Quote of the Day

What we feel, think and do this moment influences both our present and the future in ways we may never know. Begin. Start right where you are. Consider your possibilities and find add more meaning and zest to your life.

-Alexandra Stoddard

Saturday, April 25, 2009

what to do today

Will I stay home and veg out with the kids? Will I go grocery shopping? Or will I finish up some half done craft projects? I'd prefer to do all 3, but alas I am only 1 person. It's still early, and I've not finished my first cup of coffee yet.

My new stamps from My Sentiments Exactly (MSE as I will refer to them) arrived and I've not yet had a chance to play with them. Been busy all this week with other things, maybe I'll make something cool with them...or not. I need to study them and see what kind of creating mood I'm in. Could be that I'll just curl up with a book and read all day long.

Quote of the Day

Having someone who understands is a great blessing to ourselves. Being someone who understands is a great blessing to others.
-Janette Oke

Friday, April 24, 2009

Snow is a 4 letter word...again

So there I was yesterday enjoying day #2 of 80ºF weather, it was lovely! I had 10 large bags of cedar mulch delivered and had the sprinkler system de-winterized. I was playing with my new camera taking pictures galore of various things.

It started raining last night, the wind picked up a bit but it was nothing to cause me any alarm.

I woke up at 4:30 am to hearing my sprinkler system going off...I went downstairs and out to the garage and turned it off, then back upstairs and turned on the coffee pot. I checked my e-mail and then went to get a mug of coffee only to discover that it was raining. I got ready for the day and sent the kids off to school and then it happened- it started snowing and it was coming down thick and heavy! For over an hour it was near white out conditions. By mid afternoon it had melted away, but about 5 pm it started snowing again. It was light at first and now you can't see past the fence in my backyard.
And what did I just do? I ordered take out and I have to leave the house in 15 minutes to go get it...such is life in South Dakota.

I've been hanging out with my little friend Amelia this week. She was my test subject yesterday and this picture is my favorite.

Quote of the Day

The pursuit of happiness is a most ridiculous phrase; if you pursue happiness you'll never find it.
- C. P. Snow

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Here it is, my house listing 14818 Pheasant. If you know of anyone moving out to the Ellsworth AFB area please send the link of my house to them.

Make it yourself!

With all of the graduations, baby showers, bridal showers, birthdays and anniversaries that we are all certain to be invited to in the coming months- it makes gift giving a little hard. This is where making it yourself comes into play. It's rare that I give a store bought gift, if I do, it's almost always a book.

I love giving handmade gifts, I feel that it shows that I care enough about the gift recipients to make it myself. I also put together little crafting kits and give them as gifts. Children especially like craft kits and you'll find that grown-ups like them too!

I want to encourage you to make something for that next baby shower you're invited to. Be it a flannel receiving blanket, a crocheted baby blanket or a set of stamped thank you notes. You don't need to go into debt to be able to give a friend a nice gift, and they wouldn't want you to either. I'm going to look at some flannel and create some small projects. Everyone needs receiving blankets and they are a quick and simple thing to make. To dress them up, use a colored thread and if your sewing machine has any kind of fancy decorative stitch use that! I want to make some with variegated thread for the decorative stitched edges, how neat will that look in shades of blue, green, yellow or pink? Too darn cute!

Quote of the Day

Goodbye is always Hello to something else.
-George Ella Lyons

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Military Life

I'm enjoying the calm that comes after a storm. In no way shape or form is any military dependents life easy or glamorous. It is not one to be coveted or envied in any way. We as a collective go through more hardships than civilians can ever hope to experience. With our loved ones being away for months at a times- some are away for as long as 18 months. Many new military wives are moving away from home or their home towns for first time. Loneliness and homesickness can run rampant. That's why I try my best to contact new spouses and invite them to come to functions or just to come to lunch. To get out of the house and meet others- you never can tell when you will meet your new best friend!

I swear that Murphy's law kicks in as soon as my husband leaves for a deployment or extended TDy- I hear the same thing from my girlfriends.
Murphy's Law -"If anything can go wrong, it will"
Through supporting one another, being there to lend an ear and sometimes just being there to lend a helping hand with the kids- together we can ride the storm out and come out on top of the waves!
My younger sister has on numerous occasions accused me of having "it" so good, that I have some sort of a "dream life"- oh be serious! I tell her that "LIFE is what YOU make of it!". Sitting at home stewing about things or worse yet doing nothing about your situation- this was what my sister did...she sat on her butt and did nothing to make her situation better. Could be the reason why she's divorced now. Marriage and the military- there's a lot of give and take and I hate to say it but it's mainly on one side of the relationship due to the long deployments. To be married to a career military you need to be a very patient and understanding person, one who can be self reliant and a team player.
Now with that said- get out there and make some new friends! And for the person at Ellsworth AFB who is reading my blog daily- come on out and introduce yourself!

Quote of the Day

You gain strength, courage and confidence by every experience in which you really stop to look fear in the face. You are able to say to yourself, 'I have lived through this horror. I can take the next thing that comes along.' You must do the thing you think you cannot do.
-Eleanor Roosevelt (1884 - 1962)

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

A Brand New Day

To borrow another quote about this last week of so many hectic things that have been going on behind the scenes...

Courage is the art of being the only one who knows you're scared to death.
Harold Wilson (1916 - 1995)

It's not the easiest of things knowing that you have to confront someone, if it concerns a legal matter it's best advised to bring a witness.

So here I am, it's brand new day and new things and adventures await me. I'll give you more scoop later...I'm off to get my lazy kids into gear for another day of higher education.

Quote of the Day

Our only limit to our realization of tomorrow will be our doubts of today. Let us move forward with strong and active faith.
-Franklin D. Roosevelt

Monday, April 20, 2009

Facing Challenges

To say that we all face challenges everyday, some more difficult than others is an understatement. There's always more going on in my life than what I put on my blog. I think that everyone that has a blog does not put everything out there on the blogosphere to read.

My "challenges" so to speak have been more daunting than I have let on. I've prayed on the "issues" that lay before me- oh how I have prayed! And with that said, I do believe that God has answered my prayers. But remember that he doesn't just answer a prayer and POOF there's the answer, rather his answers require us to perform another task and that through that task my prayers will be answered.

There are times when we all have been discouraged by the actions or non-actions of others. When we have to take a deeper look into a situation and confront the matter head on. Be it through verbal or written communication we do have to remain firm in our convictions and do what is right for us and our family. When others do not have our best interests at hand, it's best to confront the situation and deal with it swiftly. Please pray for me today as I am to make a confrontation and right a wrong.

Quote of the Day

Courage is resistance to fear, mastery of fear - not absence of fear.
-Mark Twain (1835 - 1910)

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Finding Simple Pleasures in everyday tasks

I take delight in the simple things in life, some of those things may seem to be laborious or tedious but in all honesty they are things I have come to look at as a labor of love.

*Ironing- I know that's it's ranked pretty high on many of my friends' hate to do list but me, I find it strangely relaxing.

*Preparing and cooking food- I still find it hard to believe that so many people rely entirely upon boxed or frozen prepared foods. I'm in my element when I am making something from scratch.

*Vacuuming the carpet- another tedious task but there's a simple pleasure in it.

*Washing dishes -I find the warm running water soothing and it makes me think of tropical places- especially if it's warm in the kitchen :-)

*Making the bed- That's one room neat and tidy! Get yourself into a routine of doing this right after you get out of bed and you'll find that it sets a good tone for the rest of your day!

There's a simple rule to maintaining a clean house- "A place for Everything and Everything in it's place". Once you get yourself into the routine of putting your toys away after you're done playing with them, folding and putting away the laundry as soon they are out of the dryer...these chores will become labors of love that you won't mind doing. For those that stress out at the very thought of tackling these chores- well that's because you waited until the laundry became a mountain, or your ignored the fact that the newspapers and magazines were piling up until they became a huge an unappealing heap in your family room. Again, setting a routine will soon have you taking pleasure in having a clean house...I'm a living example of this.

Quote of the Day

I am only one, but I am one. I can not do everything, but I can do something. And I will not let what I can not do interfere with what I can do.
-Edward E. Hale

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Seeing Green

You know it's Spring when... the grass is greening up and leaf buds are forming on the trees. My Daylilies are shooting up and other flowering plants are also starting to send up leaves. I love to tool around in the garden, and with the warmer weather that's predicted for this upcoming week I'll be able to do just that.

Quote of the Day

An optimist is the human personification of Spring.
-Susan J. Bissonette

Friday, April 17, 2009

My last OSC function

So there I was, debating on bringing my new camera to my last OSC function. Did I bring it? No, I decided to leave it at home. I figure that there will be plenty of other things for me to "scrap" and I didn't need another picture of myself.

It was very befitting that my friend Amber Hollis farewell me as she was the first to welcome me when we came to Ellsworth, AFB back in 2003. Amber and her hubby are the only people that have been stationed here longer than Lucien and I have-wow! They finally get to move this summer, congratulations to Sloan and Amber on the new assignment! Many more friends will be fare welled next month- but as my schedule is getting more and more hectic and filled with loads of things to get ready for the move I doubt if I will be able to attend the OSC function next month. I received a lovely charm for my charm bracelet, I'll try to take a close up picture of it as it is very unique. When I leave this area for good, I will have been here 5 years and 9 months.

Quote of the Day

The spirit within you remains a free thing filled with boundless dreams to share.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Spring- a season of change

I am loving the rain! Others may be complaining about it but not me, I say bring it on! All of the snow in our front yard has melted away- now for the big pile of snow in the back yard to disappear. Our grass is starting to green up and it makes me happy to see signs of Spring.

Spring makes me think of rebirth and new beginnings. I'm even more anxious to get this house sold and the movers here so we can start on our new beginning in England.

The conversation I had with my son this morning has left me with such a warm fuzzy feeling that I'm still smiling about it. I can see that what I have said to him has had an impact and he's showing me that he's ready to try new things. I do have to give some credit in part to his best friend who also has said some pretty wise things to him for someone I thought was rather aloof and is now proving to not be as I once thought he was.

So here I am wondering what crafty thing I will do today. I do have 5 quilt tops (3 baby quilts and 2 lap quilts) that need to be sandwiched and quilted, then there are those other things I'm working on for my Etsy store and of course there's the thing of maintaining my house show ready-ugh! which reminds me that I need to vacuum the carpet and do some dusting.

I have plans on going to an OSC function this evening. I haven't been to one since last August or September. I'm hard pressed to make myself attend tonight but I will on the grounds that I haven't been to anything in months and I need to get out, besides that maybe they will farewell me tonight (I can only hope).

Quote of the Day

If you pray for rain, be prepared to deal with some mud.
-Mary Engelbreit

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Our Paper Crafting Group

Here are some pictures I took when we were at Peggy's house for our paper crafting group...This is Peggy, she is the one who brings out all of the creativity in our group. She always has something new to show us! Please check out Peggy's blog as she always has something new to share with everyone in the world of paper crafting!

Here's Ellen, There's not a time when she doesn't have some great looking stamped project to show to us.
This is Sarah, our multimedia artist please check out her blog for links to her other sites - she's more than just a paper crafter!

The always bright and cheerful Donna, who brighten up any room she enters! Donna is super creative and a true delight to be around! Donna has brought show and tell items from when she attends other local paper crafting classes. All I have to say is Ooooh Pretty!

Here's one of our projects- we made these little boxes using one of those really big dies from Sizzix that's made especially for Stampin Up. From left to right
Red Flowered box- Sandie
Blue Box- Ellen
Pink Swirly- Donna
Cream and Blue- Sarah
We all put our own little spin/touches on the boxes we made. They all came out looking great! And I'll tell ya, I ended up ordering this jumbo sized die...I can't go to the UK without it! I see myself making a lot of these little boxes this Christmas!

We also made some note cards, it's just that I didn't take any pictures of mine...yet.

Quote of the Day

One thing life has taught me: if you are interested, you never have to look for new interests. They come to you. When you are genuinely interested in one thing, it will always lead to something else.
-Eleanor Roosevelt

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

at the end of the day...

When all is said and done sometimes all it takes is a day spent one on one talking with your child to make things better. Talking about fears and expectations about what the future may hold was a big part of our day. We've come to an understanding and I'm not saying that things are 100% better, but rather that we're working towards it being that way. I gave my platform speech about the wonderful "opportunities" that lie ahead for the 4 of us and how this move to the UK is a big leap. I'm sure that there will be a few more bumps in the road before we leave, but for now I've managed to make my Boy feel loved for who he is and that he can come to me to talk about anything. I assured him that I won't be judgemental with what he has to say and that together we can conquer any problems that come up.

Being a Mom with 2 teenagers isn't the easiest job in the world, but it doesn't have it's good moments, hopefully more good than bad.

my life...

I can't help but to love the comedic humor of the late George Carlin, he says it as it is and has a way of making us laugh at the humor that can be found in everyday situations.

When I saw the quote that I'm using today I had to laugh- it reminded me of my current situation, you know- the big move to the UK.

Trying to keep everything together, in order to maintain that order I need to have those around me listening to what I say, that's not always as easy as it would seem. From the Realtor, to the 3 different schools (the 2 here and the 1 in the UK), to my children and the people over at the moving company who will be packing up our entire household. Maybe if I had a beautifully embroidered robe and a really cool looking hat like the Pope I could pull it all off, but alas, all I've got is my pink velour bathrobe and numerous multicolored knitted ski hats and pink bunny slippers- not that it wouldn't have people looking at me, it's the way they would look at me (like I'm a lunatic). Yup that being the case, it's best for me to put on my game face and play ball! I'll say it openly-It's not going to be easy, but I CAN do this!

I finally got the school thing figured out, together with all of the misunderstandings on the UK school's side figured out and the transcripts being sent and deciphered and my kids put into the proper grades. That's one thing down and done, whew!

Next hurdle- convincing our son that this is not the end of world. I thought that we had gotten through to him, but alas...he is 16 and he will be moving the summer before his senior year. Him staying behind with a host family IS NOT an option. He's coming with us and that's final. The sooner that he accepts it the better off he will be. I do think that once he sees that there are other American students his age at our new base he'll start to feel better about things. Our daughter on the other hand is looking forward to the move and all of the opportunities that await her there. "This" in case you haven't noticed is the sucky part of a military move.

Besides my sons situation (which is breaking my heart) I've got to prepare my beloved kitty for transport to the UK- alone. There's going to be so much last minute stuff going on around here that it worries me that she'll get lost in the shuffle. So I'll be shipping her out before we leave, her kitty dad will meet her at the Airport and bring her home in her kitty mom's minivan.

Throughout all of this I've got to keep Hannah in focus and not let her get lost or feel forgotten. She too needs to be made to feel special. I try to do one on one things with her as much as possible. I feel the need to reassure her that she is loved and just because she's not causing a ruckus about the move doesn't mean that she doesn't matter to me.

The sale of my house has been a slow going process. I hope to hear something from the realtor that brought a couple here on Saturday. I do have an open house scheduled for this coming Sunday the 19th from 1-4 pm- I certainly hope that draws some interest. I know that my house will sell, it's the waiting that is making me slightly neurotic.

Here it is, with all of the crap I'm going through I do try to see the humor in it. One thing that's good about all of this, my house is really clean, LOL!

It's said that God doesn't give you more than you can handle- can someone send in a prayer to God letting him know that my plate is looking pretty full right now? I've tried this but his line seems to be busy right now.

With all of the things that are weighing on my mind and on my heart I find solace in being creative. Trying to keep my brain and my heart favorably occupied has been more of a challenge than anyone knows. It's from another quote that I draw from...Give yourself an even greater challenge than the one you are trying to master and you will develop the powers necessary to overcome the original difficulty."~ William Bennett

When I think of how much of a Steel Magnolia I'm going to have to be in the upcoming weeks ahead, I feel empowered. I know that I can do this, but I want to do it with grace and not come off as a bitch. With a heavy sigh I go on to get things done...wish me luck!

Quote of the Day

I have as much authority as the Pope, I just don't have as many people who believe it.
-George Carlin

Monday, April 13, 2009

Have you ever...

Seen a crafting item (be it a tool, fabric or patterned paper) in a magazine and think "Wow that looks nice I'd like to get it" and then see it in person and say "Wow, that's not at all what I expected it to look like or be like? I'm going through that with a fabric's not at all of how I expected it to look. Oh well, I'm glad that I got to see it up close and personal and that I can save my $$ for something else.

It's Monday!

The rain and warmer weather has made a significant dent in melting the snow. Today it's supposed to get to 60ºF, how wonderful is that? There's also more rain in the forecast- 4 days of it to be exact, but I'd much rather have 4 days of rain than 4 days of snow any time! Today's weather and warmer temperatures is reason enough for me to celebrate! It calls for capri pants and sandals! I know that in other parts of the USA this weather is considered cold (like where my parents live) but to us here that have been having an extended winter, this is glorious weather worth celebrating! Get out the sunscreen and go play outside!

I plan on taking my camera with me and taking pictures of the signs of Spring.

OOOh, today is paper crafting group- Oh my word I just know that Peggy has something FAB for us to make. Stay tuned for it!

Quote of the Day

What is success?
To laugh often and much;
to win the respect of intelligent people
and the affection of children;
to earn the appreciation of honest critics
and to endure the betrayal of false friends;
to appreciate beauty;
to find the best in others;
leave the world a better place whether by a healthy child,
a garden patch or a redeemed social condition;
to know that even one life has breathed easier because
you have lived.
This is to succeed.
-Ralph Waldo Emerson

Sunday, April 12, 2009

10 things I am Thankful for

I give thanks every day for's my list of things for today and they are not in any particular order

*God, Mary, Joseph and especially Jesus- without them and their sacrifices, my life would not be as it is today.

* for the gift of friendship. It's a gift that keeps on giving all though the year!

* for having a roof over our heads, warm beds for everyone to sleep in and food in the pantry.

* for the gift of creativity, from scrapbooking and card making to sewing, quilting, needlework and cooking- I love it all and better yet I love to share it with others!

* for my loving husband and his military career, because without it we would not have ever met.

* that at any given moment it's 80ºF and sunny somewhere in the world.

* my desire to constantly push myself to do more. It's that inner drive that keeps me going like the energizer bunny through the good times and even more so though the rough times and it doesn't let me give up hope- ever!

*my love of classical music. I can listen to it all day long and never get tired of it. It can be uplifting and energetic or peaceful and soothing.

*for the gift of laughter- I can find the humor in most things, and I prefer to laugh than the alternative...getting angry.

*for my children, to think that I have had a hand in helping to shape who they are becoming as they reach adulthood- Oh what a scary thought indeed, LOL!

Happy Easter! Happy Spring!

Happy Easter, Happy Spring, happy happy everything!

May the glory and love of Jesus Christ fill you all!

I awoke to the sound of my cat knocking things off of my dresser and was getting peeved with her when I suddenly realized something, I slept through the night- AGAIN! Dr.Laurie if you are reading this Thank You! I've had enough of waking up at 3:30 am and was ready to seek medical attention for my sleep disorder. I was chatting with my friend Laurie ( who is physical therapist) and she recommended me taking Melatonin. I bought a bottle of it and have been sleeping through the night every night ever since! That right there is a blessing indeed! I don't feel groggy or crabby, I had a full nights rest and I feel great!

We're expecting rain today, others may be moaning about it but I say bring it on! Lets get these ugly brown speckled piles of snow melted and gone! I'm ready to see flowering plants springing up from the earth! I'm ready to see Bee's buzzing around the flowers in my English flower garden collecting pollen -even though I'm seriously allergic to bees, I think them adorable! Heck I even chose a Bee as my symbol/mascot for my Etsy store. I long for spring time and the wonders that it brings with it. I eagerly await the time I can be out in my flower gardens pulling weeds, and tying plants to bamboo stakes to make them a little more sturdy against the South Dakota wind. I long to hear birds singing in the trees and the whirl of lawnmowers on Saturday mornings.

I finished the pink and brown baby quilt top. It's adorable! I just might have a hard time giving this one away! OOOh it's just so sweet and yummy! Here it is!

Quote of the Day

Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter.
~Martin Luther King, Jr.

Saturday, April 11, 2009

The Saturday Rush

I've been keeping myself rather busy this morning, got up early and started off with baking desserts for Easter, started on making some items to sell on my Etsy site (stay tuned), and finished getting the laundry done folded and put away. Oh and then there's the little thing called "showing our house"! Oh I hope and pray that this couple can be the ones to buy our house. They seemed to be very interested in it and they loved all of the extra features. They are a sweet couple that would enjoy living in this house.

Now back to getting some other things done around here.

Quote of the Day

You talk to God, you're religious. God talks to you, you're psychotic.
- Doris Egan

Friday, April 10, 2009

Is it Easter already?

My children are home this Friday- no not because of more snow but because of their school "Easter/Spring Break". We don't get too excited about this as it's only a 4 day weekend, not much time to go anywhere so we will be staying here. Part of me would love to fly down to Florida right now and enjoy the sunshine and warmth there!

I better get my grocery list together and head on out to the commissary and pick up a few things for Easter Sunday dinner. I'm hoping that Andrew will go to mass with us but I'm not going to hold my breath on it. Hannah has been asked to preform with the church choir again, they request her to sing with them for every holiday.

I've got cheesecakes to bake so I better get on it! Now, where oh where did I put my coffee mug?

Quote of the Day

A successful individual typically sets his next goal somewhat but not too much above his last achievement. In this way he steadily raises his level of aspiration.
~Kurt Lewin

Thursday, April 09, 2009

My Thursday to do list

From a creative stand point, I'm always pushing myself to do more. What's that mean? To do more? For me it's to produce more, to design more to be creative every waking hour of my day. I have to say that yesterday was such a great design day for me!

I've got a few projects currently in the works

* Camera strap covers. There's no way on this planet that I am going to walk around looking like a walking billboard for Nikon. As much as I love my new camera, the strap is hideous, and to think that it has this logo on it twice! See for yourself...

Here you see my first attempt at making a strap cover (it's in batik fabric)- it's okay but I can do better ;-)
And this is my gem! It's padded and has a pocket for the lens cap! I refuse to buy something that's so simple to make and it took me less than an hour to put together!

* About a week ago I had seen a picture of a baby quilt that caught my eye and I wanted to buy a pattern so I could make one. But my search was fruitless, no where could I find the pattern! Not one of the 5 quilt shops in Rapid City carried it! So I decided to make my own rendition of this quilt. I really got into the design process yesterday and by 5 pm I had made and completed my first designed by Sandie quilt top. Here it is- cute city!

I've also got a 2nd one in the works, the new one is pink and brown :-)

* I've been asked by an American friend who currently lives in the UK to design a scrapbook page layout for her girl scout troop's trip to London. So I've got that brewing in my head. I'll make page kits for the girls to put together. Should be fun to do, even though I've not been to London myself...yet! No picture of this project yet, as I said earlier it's brewing in my head. I could take a picture of my head, maybe that will help me to nail down the design elements on this project (insert laughter here).

With a fresh new layer of snow on the ground and school delayed by 2 hours, I'm letting the kids sleep in and I'm enjoying a blissful morning with my favorite mug full of Dunkin Donuts coffee :D

Quote of the Day

"Give yourself an even greater challenge than the one you are trying to master and you will develop the powers necessary to overcome the original difficulty."
~ William Bennett

Wednesday, April 08, 2009

on a mission

Needless to say I'm in love with all things crafty. I'm on yet another roll to create something fun. I saw a baby blanket done up in a cute and simple way and I want to recreate it. So today I'm going to set out to do this project...wish me luck. So you might be wondering if I have anyone in mind for this? Nope, not at all- that's the beauty of it!

Something to make you laugh

My friend Liz sends me the best stuff! This video link had me laughing pretty darn hard! Check it out it! Sheep Light

Black Hills Shop Hop

Here's a list of the 10 quilt shops out here in the Black Hills area doing a shop hop until the 18th. You can pick up a FREE pattern, purchase a fat quarter at each shop to be entered into the door prize and Grand Door Prize. Maybe I'll see you at one of the shops today :-)

1- Dakota Quilt Company * Spearfish, SD

2- Fabric Junction *Sturgis, SD

3- Thimble Cottage Quilt Village *Rapid City, SD

4- The Sewing Center * Rapid City, SD

5- The Quilt Corral Too *Rapid City, SD

6- The Quilt Connection *Rapid City, SD

7- Seven Sisters Quilting *Rapid City, SD

8- The Quilt Shop *Custer, SD

9- Nuts & Bolts Fabric Shop *Edgemont, SD

10 Heart Song Quilts, Hot Springs, SD

Quote of the Day

Much as worthy friends add to the happiness and value of life, we must in the main depend upon ourselves,and everyone is his own best friend or worst enemy.
~Lord Evebury

Tuesday, April 07, 2009

Saying Goodbye

I knew this day was coming, and I wanted so much to be strong. I can't help but feel a bit sad as I watched my husband drive away this morning. I tell myself that it's only for 2 months, that I can do this...meanwhile I'm wiping away the tears.


My Monday was spent like my Friday- waiting for others.

*Waiting for the city to have their public works employees make our streets wider (we got an awful lot of snow out here with this last storm). By the grace of God our developer (who happens to actually lives in our neighborhood) took care of us even though many don't realize it. This man is like a shepherd watching over his flock, several times during the storm I personally witnessed him plowing the roads with his front end loader. Making sure that people could get out or emergency workers could get in if someone needed medical attention. So I say to you, if you live in my neighborhood give a nod of thanks to Ken S., he's a great guy who deserves a pat on the back! Other subdivisions do not have this kind of thing going on AT ALL...they are left to wait for the city.

*Waiting to see if the UPS truck will pull up in front of my house and bring me a package. To my surprise I got a big box full of goodies from Cameta Camera! Oh my word, I LOVE my new camera! I actually fell asleep reading the manual last night. I'm going to play with it some more today! I did manage to take some pictures of the snow in front of our house, but my main focus was on the cat and our daughter.

*I've been waiting to see when the newspaper would finally arrive- and it did, only a couple of days late, LOL! I loved reading the headlines BIG Snow Storm expected...hence the reason why I didn't get Saturday and Sundays paper until Monday afternoon.

*I waited for my friend to stop by and pick up the paperwork for our HOA. She came by in the afternoon and apologized profusely. I figured that she went home because of the impending snow storm. But it's in her hands now and I'm done with another part of the HOA.

So what was I doing to keep myself occupied during all of this waiting? I decided to make something. I know, didn't I just make something? Now I'm making something else? Sheesh! I've been thinking about a project I saw on line, but I didn't want to use the jumbo ric rack. So I start to go through my stash looking for those Mary Engelbreit charm packs that I bought last year. I pull them out (I had bought 2) and I only needed one and I sort them by color and lay them out. I made a simple but cute table runner, but not for my dining room table but for my sewing cabinet. You see, my sewing/quilting corner is dedicated to all things ME. I love the bright cheery colors and the witty quotes and sayings! I managed to completely finish my simple table runner; piece it, quilt it and get the binding sewn on by hand too- all before dinner!

While I was being crafty, so was my husband. There we are at opposite ends of the formal dining table we are both creating different things each being something fun and useful. His being a device that holds the GPS in his cup holder in his car. Our children are have been given a double dose of the crafty gene, it's no wonder why Hannah is the way she is. And Andrew, trust me, I've seen this boy of ours be quite crafty- he just doesn't pursue/indulge his crafty side as often as the rest of us.

My husband spent the day doing some last minute things. And true to the last minute thing, just before he went to bed he packed his suitcases.

And that was yesterday. Now for another mug of my ever so yummy coffee and to wake up my family members in a few minutes.

Quote of the Day

A winner is someone who recognizes his God-given talents, works his tail off to develop them into skills, and uses these skills to accomplish his goals.
~Larry Bird

Monday, April 06, 2009

Quote of the Day

There is only one way to happiness and that is to cease worrying about things which are beyond of our will.

Sunday, April 05, 2009

my Batik Quilt top

The pattern for this quilt top is called "Simply Squared" and it's in the book "Strip Happy" by Donna Kinsey published by Design Originals. I used the Bali Batik line of fabrics from Hoffman fabrics. All I have left to do is to piece together some binding and a backing. Let me know what you think.


Here's a picture of my husband shoveling snow from the driveway. Yup, it's nice and deep!

My Crafty Goodness

I've managed to select a quilt pattern and fabric, now for me to start pressing, cutting and piecing together my latest quilt top! I went right for my Bali Pop collection (that's what Hoffman fabrics calls their 2½ Batik strips) and after going through all of the fabric strips in my clear acrylic shoe box, I was able to put together the look I had in mind. The colors and prints of these batik's are amazing! I selected an array of earth tones which to me seems to be quite soothing and gives me an over all feeling of warmth. Ooh I can hardly wait to get started on it!

There's just one thing I need to know...Is it too early for coffee?

I went into my scrapbook nook to get some crafting tools and the snow is past the top of the window. There's no use in shoveling away the snow right now as it is still snowing!

Key things for today...keep warm, keep busy!

Quote of the Day

Tomorrow is the most important thing in life. Comes in to us at midnight very clean. It's perfect when it arrives and it pours itself in our hands and hopes we've learnt something from yesterday.
~John Wayne

Saturday, April 04, 2009

too much snow!

Snow surrounds my house like a boat on the ocean. It is everywhere as far as the eye can see. Getting a blizzard once a week for 3 weeks straight, on the weekend no less is wearing on my nerves.

I'm looking at quilting magazines and pattern books trying to decide upon a quilt pattern. I want to make a large lap sized quilt using a jelly roll (those 2½ inch wide strips of fabric). It's deciding upon a quilt pattern (I've got it narrowed down to 3) and a color scheme (that's narrowed down to 3 as well). I'm feeling rather drawn to working with Batiks right now. I love how the colors seem to flow and swirl so gracefully together and how the finished look reminds me greatly of mottled marble.

I'm going to look at the patterns and lay out some fabric choices and take it from there. I'll mull it over with some mint hot chocolate topped off with whipped cream(doesn't that sound delicious?). What are snow days if one does not take the time to indulge ones self? They are miserable that's what they are! So my words of advice for my friends who live locally and are dealing with an ocean of snow...pamper yourselves! Take a long luxurious bubble bath, paint your toes nails, make some scrumptious cinnamon rolls (I've got a terrific recipe that came out of Cooks Illustrated) but most of all don't let yourself become disgruntled like I did's such a waste of energy!

I'm off to make myself that mug if minty hot chocolate and to look at my stash of Batik fabrics!

SNOW is a 4 letter word!

Yesterday was a total bust! So many things were cancelled in advance of a snow storm that didn't show up until the later in the evening...things that didn't need to be cancelled.

*My son's date- her parents wouldn't let her go out to the movies because of the pending snow storm.

*UPS - didn't deliver my camera because of the pending snow storm (no joke) If I'm lucky I might see it on Monday or Tuesday after it hangs out for 5 or more days in the UPS warehouse, grrrr! Here's a little tidbit for you- try as you might, you will never be able to find a local phone number for your UPS hub. NO matter how many google searches and white pages searches. Heck- locating a phone number to speak to a human being with UPS is a challenge! Then you get some rude person telling you that you will NEVER be able to find a local phone number and the guy was quite snippy about it too! Look people, I just want my camera that's all!

*Tonight's Raider Rumble- cancelled due to the pending snow storm.

*I waited all afternoon for someone to come over and pick some documents up from my house- she never showed up and never called.

*The British school of which our children will be attending this fall sent some documents of which were rather confusing to decipher. What we got out of it was that either our son was being held back a year or our daughter was being advanced a year...something got mixed up in translations of that I'm sure! I had to get that fixed immediately and it wasn't until early evening when that was done and settled (talk about getting an ulcer).

*I have to keep on top of getting my kitty shipped to the UK- There's some paperwork that my Vet's office didn't fill out. I need to go in there next week and get on it- you know...once I have access to a car and the roads are cleared of snow.

So a little bit of snow falling sent everyone into hysterics and places closed down in advance of a snow storm that didn't really in all honesty hit. Do we have snow? Sure we do, but the wind isn't blowing it all over the place, it's staying put (for now). It's light out now, I want to take a couple of pictures of the white case the wind pushes it around and makes huge snow drifts in some places and leaves the ground scoured in other places. It's strange to see these huge snow drifts next to areas of dormant bare grass.

Now for the good part of my day. My new friend Terri had e-mailed me some wonderful links to check out. All of which are from the local area where I'll be moving to soon. They were wonderful! Restaurants (pubs), the panoramic link and it's views were amazing! I had a glass of wine and went on a fantastic tour of England all from my chair, thanks Terri it was wonderful!

Quote of the Day

The secret of happiness is not in doing what one likes, but in liking what one has to do.
~James Matthew Barrie

Friday, April 03, 2009

Free Quilt Patterns

Here's something I've been meaning to share...FREE Quilt Patterns!

Many of the quilting sites I visit have FREE quilting patterns. Here are some links
Quilt Bug
United Notions
Blank Quilting
Free Quilt Patterns
Free Quilt
Quilters Cache

Be sure to mind the terms/conditions of use with the patterns offered by these web sites. It's through the generous contributions of these and many more companies that make these FREE quilting patterns possible. Give credit where credit is due and protect copyright laws!

A Day of Anticipation

It's Friday, a day of anticipation, or at least it is for me. The end of the week, brings happiness and sorrow at the same time.

*My husband is to leave soon to start his new assignment in England. Our time spent together this weekend will be spent getting him packed for his journey.

*Our son has his first official date tonight.

*The UPS delivery guy is bringing me a package today - I can hardly wait to open the box and play with my new toy!

*I will attempt to finish that Americana Flag banner today- wish me luck!

*Believe it or not but we're on another winter storm warning. What is a Winter Storm Warning? Here's what is said over at -- A significant winter storm or hazardous winter weather is occurring, imminent, or likely, and is a threat to life and property.

*I plan on dropping off my ME quilt top to the professional long arm quilter- could be today, could be Monday. Depends upon the UPS delivery guy and what time he drops off my package and when the snow starts falling...again.

I plan to keep myself busy today with sketching out some ideas for some crafting projects paper crafting AND fabric crafting.

Quote of the Day

We learn the inner secret of happiness when we learn to direct our inner drives, our interest and attention to something outside ourselves.
~Ethyl Percy Andrus

Thursday, April 02, 2009

Start the Laundry or start a new Crafting project? Which would you choose?

I'm in a craft mode overload! How can it be that I have so many ideas in my head all screaming to get out at the same time? I keep a note pad and pencil at my bedside because there are times I wake up and just have to sketch things out. Are other people like this?

Quote of the Day

What a waste it is to lose one's mind. Or not to have a mind is being very wasteful. How true that is.
~Dan Quayle

Wednesday, April 01, 2009

Every Day is a Gift

To quote a character from one of my all time favorite movies "It's a Wonderful Life"... "One life touches so many others. Don't you see George? You've been given a real gift". Now, who knows who said those lines? Give up? It's Clarence of course!

All of us at some point in time have experienced moments of sadness, thought that no one cares about them. There may even be some that think the world may be without hope- as for myself, I don't believe that for one minute! One life can touch so many others, I really believe that with all my heart! I didn't have the easiest of childhoods nor were my teen years what I would consider to be the best years of my life, LOL! But my life experiences have made me the person that I am today. I hope that by leading by example that I can show my children how to be compassionate and giving of themselves, tolerant and understanding, frugal yet generous, loving and kind to all things. We all have a gift, God made sure of it!

Throughout the years no matter where the Air Force has sent us, I've made it my personal mission to plant the seeds of kindness and to reap the flowers of friendship. To make friends from all walks of life, to gain knowledge and (to borrow a quote from Mary Engelbreit) To Bloom Where I am Planted! My next stop on this journey will take me many thousands of miles (and an ocean) away from my friends here in America. But they will all be just one click away from my computer key board! In this modern era one never has to leave friends behind, especially when we've got the internet and a fantastic long distance calling plan!

I've planted the seeds and have started cultivating new friendships in the UK. I can't begin to tell you how much I look forward to seeing all of the wonderful ladies in person!

Quote of the Day

It is one of the beautiful compensations of this life that no one can sincerely try to help another without helping himself.
~Charles Dudley Warner