Sunday, June 26, 2011

Red and sand and sun

Arent' these fun? Snappyfriends wanted something red this week. Remember the antique/junk place where I found that door knocker a couple of posts ago? Well, these were sitting out on a table and I knew I'd better snap this while they were there. Didn'ts. I didn't try them on and I didn't look to see how much they were. You know what they say about hindsight. I went back a couple of days later to do both and of course they were sold. I can't imagine me actually wearing them but I sure would have liked to try them on!

Well on the way to making 409 yo-yos. This is a project I saw in a magazine and I really wanted to start cleaning out the stash drawers of pieces and parts and unused uninteresting fats and such. This project is just about going to do the trick. I can't wait to see what I have when they're all yo-yoed so I can decide on a background for them.

But ever on my mind is the next really seriously nice project I want to do. I can't decide on a pattern but I want it to come out of this drawer. It's filled with blue and green and red and it goes deep. These aren't fat quarters, most of this is yardage and it's stuck in my head that this project has to be deserving of yardage. I don't want to blow it. But then, I guess I could always go shopping if I do! The point here is to use what I have. Thinking.....thinking....

After a week of almost continual rain, we had a wonderful Saturday of warm sunshine. The kids came for a visit and we went to the beach Saturday morning.

We have a wonderful neighbor, Walter, who made a boat for each of my grandbabies. We have them on long strings for pulling. After he and I shared a story he loves called Toy Boat by Randall deSeve, Charlie asked Walter to make a boat for him like the one in the book. Walter made the boat and then Charlie decided that Elizabeth needed one, too, so he asked Walter to make one for her. A couple of weeks ago Charlie decided that now the little girls needed a boat so he and I walked over to Walter's house and Charlie asked for "two more boats, please, for Adelaide and Cecilia." By the next day we had two more boats.

Oozy clay between piggy toes that used to be bottled and sold as beauty clay in Chicago! This stuff oozes out of our cliff, down to the beach and into the lake. Free for piggy toes.

Sand castles

Chocolate cookie picnic

Sand angels

Our Michigan in rocks!! (See that yellow leaf? That's where we are!)

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Strawberry Fields Forever

It's time to teach Adelaide about strawberries. She's ready, she's willing to learn and she doesn't eat fruit.

Yes, we were wearing fleece at berry picking time. It was cold, we were dodging rain drops and we were on a mission. Strawberry season lasts just so long, you know.

Elizabeth was teaching Adelaide about finding the red ones. Adelaide seemed partial to the "orange" ones. She picked a few but had more fun taking what we picked and putting them into the box. She would NOT taste one.

Elizabeth, on the other hand, didn't put any into the box. She ate all she picked! Notice her Croc in her arms. Croc lives at my house but when she's here he goes everywhere with her.

Now, notice, please, the strawberry juice dripping off the chin of the child who won't eat fruit. In the car on the way home she ate and ate and ate them. Just proves my point about the trucked in out of season red things we call strawberries any other month but June. These were particularly sweet and juicy and even Adelaide couldn't resist!

We have another tradition. After supper we go out for ice cream. It's a good thing they aren't here every night!! Usually they pick chocolate but tonight they both chose Blue Moon. Do you see that dimple?

Fog was everywhere when we woke up so we went to a playground we've never been to before and wow! was it fun! They had so many things to do in that huge wooden structure! It was built almost like a maze with tunnels, dead ends, stairs, moving platforms, tire steps, sliders, it was really fun. Elizabeth of course had to try going up the down staircase.

After we left I asked Adelaide what she liked best about the new playground and she said,

"Pink!" Meaning, of course, this tire swing. The puddle was enticing.

I'm having a hard time thinking of a new quilt project. There are still many unfinished projects (finished tops) in the drawer but I'm in the mood to do some applique. I've been rummaging through books and folders and magazines and thinking. I have several yardages/fat quarters I've collected over the years I'd love to do something with but want the project to be special. I'm looking for a challenge but not something all consuming as there is a huge pile of books to be read, too. I'm thinking and thinking and so not doing much of anything. In the meantime I see all the wonderful projects everyone else in blogland is producing and I wonder what's taking me so long!
I'm cutting out yo-yo circles. I keep going back to Aunt Millie's Garden by Piece O' Cake Designs for ideas, I have a few magazine articles I've cut out....hmmm....thinking.

It's only been 4 days that I've been out of school for the summer and I told Patient Husband this evening that I already feel the clock ticking summer away and it's only been 4 days! It must be I'm still in hyper mode from school. I haven't relaxed yet. Yeah, that's it.

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Sign of summer

I ate my first real strawberry of the summer yesterday. This is something I wait the whole year for. Biting into that piece of warm, sweet, ripe fruit that you start to taste as soon as your nose smells it. I wait for the soft bite, the crunch of seeds, the sweet, the juicy spot that ends up on my shirt.

I remember when we didn't eat fruits and veggies that weren't in season because you couldn't buy them out of season. Maybe it's because travel resistent varieties weren't created yet, but when I was a kid we ate strawberries and raspberries and blueberries and cherries and peaches and corn on the cob in the summer, gorging ourselves for the two to three weeks they were ripe and ready. Apples came in September, corn came in August and tomatoes, too. Raspberries were ripe in July, strawberries in mid-June.
Now, we can have strawberries on Christmas if we wanted to buy something that looked like a strawberry but sure doesn't taste or act like a strawberry.
A strawberry should be juicy right in your hand. Trucked strawberries never juice. You can put one on the floor and step on it and it wouldn't juice. Strawberries aren't supposed to make a sound when you slice them, they should sound like slicing soft butter. Off season strawberries sound when you cut them like you're cutting a potato. They might look pretty on top of that cake but they sure don't taste like anything.
So I wait for my berries. I pick them off the plant my very own self, inhaling the aroma of the whole field. I love the experience both ways. I like when I'm in the Upick field all by myself, just me and the birds and I like seeing moms and grandmas bring the kids, passing the quiet, slow experience on to another generation.
That's what we'll do this week when my daughter brings Elizabeth and Adelaide for their first of the summer sleep over. We are going to pick strawberries. We're going to teach Adelaide how it's done. And when we get home, if there are any left in the boxes, I'll make the pie. THE pie.
Stay tuned!

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

How cool is this knocker!? Snappyfriends want to see handles this week, and I looked and looked and looked for something distinctive and fun. On the way home from work yesterday I stopped at this junk/antique place near the house (more emphasis on junk than antique) because I just knew there would be something really different there. Can you imagine the size of the door this would need? It's huge. I wanted it immediately. No, I didn't take it home with me, but not because I didn't want to!

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Tie dye day

Yesterday was tie dye day in the second grade. Buckets of colors, rubber bands, lines of kids, ponytailed moms, and voila! I love this day every year. The line strung on the trees right in front of school sends such a cheerful message to everyone who drive in.

Monday, June 6, 2011


This is what four years old looks like. Do you remember your fourth birthday? Do you remember how excited you were? Do you remember what color the frosting on your cake was? Did you ever have a pink fluffy skirt?

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Patient Husband celebrated his birthday last weekend with the kids, grands and his brother and sister-in-law. Sunday rained and rained and the thunder scared the kids under blankets. We put a movie in for them and for the length of the movie they weren't riding their bikes through the house.

Adelaide and Charlie shared the couch, Elizabeth alwsays opts for Grandpa's chair. Oblivious.

The grill had to be set up near the garage and way too close to my car. These boys are a danger to society when they get a little lighter fluid and matches in their hands. You DON'T want to hear the stories!!

This is what the end of your 62nd birthday looks like!

This Friday we are hosting the staff from school for the 14th year in a row. We'll have 40 for dinner and I'm in the midst of dicing, slicing, chopping to get the prelimiary preparations underway. Patient Husband is mowing the lawn, the sun is shining finally and we're getting ready. We love this party and so does the staff. It's a gentle way to end the school year. A collective sigh.

When this weekend is finished I'm going to finish the bindings for the baby boys' quilts - can you imagine - I have to just sew down the binding and they'd be done, but for the next few days I'm giving every minute to this party. I'm always inspired by Erin Russek's work over at One Piece at a Time. She does beautiful work.