For Today ~ 28 April 2010 ~ Simple Woman’s Daybook

FOR TODAY … 28 April 2010

Outside My Window… Sunshine out the window…not sure how long it will stay though. Yesterday was one heck of a wind storm with rain. News said it was a catagory 3 Hurricane strength winds that whipped through Northern Nevada. Oops…there went the sunshine. Rats.

I am thinking… Thank goodness I finished the budget before they closed down the module last night! Now if I can make it through the departmental meeting tomorrow, I should be ok.

I am thankful for… having a job while so many here in Nevada are losing theirs. Even if it’s a bit stressful.

From the kitchen… Not sure. I made carnitas tacos last night…maybe I’ll bring home a pizza.

I am wearing… Jeans, tennies, and a long sleeved heavy cotton shirt, hair up in a ponytail.

I am creating… Quilts…and more quilts.

I am going… see what is in the big Redbox dvd-wise…maybe make it a movie and pizza night.

I am reading… The Princess Bride…just received it after a very long transit from Florida. Sheesh…I ordered another book at the same time and that book from Canada got to me a week earlier than the one from Florida!

I am hoping… My constant wish ~ That everyone that is looking for a job, finds one.

I am hearing… Just the ice machine right now…and Morning Edition on NPR news (KUNR).

Around the house… nothing really…I did laundry last night, vacuumed the night before, dishes are done every night…I actually have a clean house.

One of my favorite things… Listening to those silly mockingbirds sing, even if it is at 3 am in the morning.

A Few Plans For The Rest Of The Week… I need to finish my garden boxes, ie: soil. Pick up the branches that were knocked down in the wind from yesterday. Need to buy some wild bird seed.

Here is a picture thought I’d share with you…

These little guys were at the park in Portola, CA…I saw them while losing two games of horseshoes. You can click on the picture to see a bigger version of it.

New Pine Trees Growing in Portola, CA


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Friday Morning Pogonip Photograhs

We’ve had a winter storm the past few days…and this morning I saw the pogonip hit my house very early…then receded to the lower valleys ~ Truckee Meadows and Spanish Springs.

My Car ~

My Lilacs ~

Fog at work ~

Now onto the non-foggy pictures.

My herbies are growing ~

Dinner last night….Mac & Cheese ~ recipe from Mennonite Girls Can Cook. I made my white sauce over the stove, not in the microwave…and I added ham.

And something I saw that tickled me!

Finished Quilt Top ~ Eden by Lila Tueller

While flipping through the Connecting Threads catalog I saw a quilt that I thought looked easy enough to make. I didn’t want to buy the kit with the fabric that they supplied, so I just winged it…the pattern is by Lorrie Franz, I think it’s called Grandma’s Inspiration.

I pulled out the two charm packs of Eden that I had…we’ve been under a winter storm since Tuesday and I WANTED SPRING, damnitalltohell! Lila Tueller’s Eden fabric line is definitely SPRING! Didn’t have enough charms to finish the quilt top AND for part of the back, so I went to Windy Moon, one of my local quilt shops…and they were sold out (I received a finger lashing from Cindy, “You should know better by now! You NEVER buy enough!”) Big Sigh. Bought a bunch of 1/4 yards of the fabric line, I can always use the rest in another quilt.

Since I didn’t have the pattern I was slightly off on measurement of the inner white border, which threw the two vertical outer borders off a tad.

Here is the finished quilt top…I’m calling it A WINDOW INTO SPRING…as that was what I was happily thinking of while sewing this top! It’s approximately 46″x60″ in size.

Finished Quilt Top ~ A Window into Spring

For Today ~ 21 April 2010 ~ Simple Woman’s Daybook

FOR TODAY … 21 April 2010

Outside My Window… a Winter storm after having two 81F days in a row! It’s snowing right now. Grrrrr.

I am thinking… I’d rather be home quilting. Where’s that bloody space heater that’s supposed to be under my desk.

I am thankful for… having a job while so many here in Nevada are losing theirs. Even if it’s a bit stressful.

From the kitchen… I have artichokes again in the frig. But I may get a $10 pizza from Round Table Pizza on the way home.

I am wearing… Jeans, tennies, and a long sleeved heavy cotton shirt, hair up in a ponytail.

I am creating… two quilts, one for my niece and one with Lila Tueller’s Eden fabric.

I am going… Stop by Windy Moon at lunch time (or after work), I need one more Eden charm pack to finish the quilt top and the back.

I am reading… Country Living and Mary Jane’s Farm magazines.

I am hoping… My constant wish ~ That everyone that is looking for a job, finds one. Adding one more onto the list…my computer loan was accepted, now I have to wait for the account to get more funds in it so they can give me my loan!

I am hearing… ice machine, me typing, doors opening.

Around the house… need to spray for ants. Those little itty-bitty black ants are starting to come into the house.

One of my favorite things… Sunshine and warmer weather on a WEEKEND…not in the middle of the week when I’m at work.

A Few Plans For The Rest Of The Week… not really sure.

Here is a picture thought I’d share with you…

Part of a quilt top I started last night…fabric is the beautiful Eden from Moda and designed by the lovely Lila Tueller. I need to add more of the white sashing/border, then one more border before the top is finished.

There is a winter storm out there…so I pulled out Lila’s fabric that I had, turned on KUNR and listened to classical music while I quilted.

Quilt top with Lila Tueller's Eden fabric line from Moda


The Simple Woman is the original home of The Simple Woman's Daybook.

It’s Monday…am back from vaction…WAAAAAHHH!

Took last Thursday and Friday off from work…stayed home. I wasn’t at work so it was a vacation to me! 🙂

Not only did I make 3 4×4 veggie boxes…but I partially filled them with horse poo (a co-worker lives on 40+ acres and has lots to share! :)) Since I’m renting a house on a third acre now, I thought I’d start out smaller than what I had at our old house. I’ll have some extra containers for tomatoes and potatoes.

Started my herbs over the weekend too…2 oreganos, 2 basils, marjoram, summer savory, chamomile, dill, and not an herb…tomatillos.

It was in the 80’s over the weekend…and it will be in the 40’s by tomorrow. I think I’ve told you this before…but…I HATE SPRINGTIME IN NEVADA. I’ve been through 30 years of them and I just hate the yo-yo weather.

I received my order from Connecting Threads on Friday! Fat Quarters and some extra yards of a few in the Antoinette Line.

A Fons & Porter Design Wall…something that I have put off buying for several years, and now I can’t figure out why I would have waited that long! I love it! Who’d thunk it?!

And for a present to myself…a Sara ConeFlower Thread Holder made by Paul’s Metal Petals in Minnesota! OMG! It’s absolutely BEAUTIFUL and works great. It’s handmade out of recycled steel, welded together into one solid piece. My old sewing machine, the Jamone 6500P (RIP), had a built-in thread holder…but the Janome Threadbanger does not, and the thread would get tangled now and again. Not any more! 🙂 If you have the extra money…I’d say TREAT YOURSELF to this BEAUTY! Besides…it’s made in MINNESOTA, USA! Thanks, Paul!

I know I don’t have a cone with this, but I didn’t have a way to use a thread cone with this machine.

Now to Hannah’s quilt…I picked out a Star from Star’s by Magic…and then decided the Jacob’s Ladder would look cool (and an easy block to make!) with the Star. It looked great on the design wall. Then I sewed the blocks together and my stars lost some points and if you follow the sequence of pictures you will see how I added a purple triangle onto the stars to make the Jacob’s Ladder flow…only they ended up smaller than the ladder. 🙂 Glad I read the forward in the Liberated Quilting book before ~ even with these mistakes, I think Hannah will love the quilt.

I just need to add a border, machine quilt it, and put on the binding. Green or Purple border…what do you think?!

What the quilt was going to look like at first:

With the added purple triangles on the Stars to fill-in the Jacobs Ladder.

All sewn together…just waiting for me to decide to add a purple or green border.

Now I’m back at work and my head hurts…eye is twitching…and a certain person here makes me feel like how Clouseau made Chief Inspector Dreyfus feel. I FEEL FOR YOU DREYFUS!

Tuesday’s Rambles ~ 13 April 2010

My brain is a bit mushy the last few days…finished the budget for the new fiscal year that is coming up, and the weather has given me a pounding headache. So…it’s a ramble day.


Thought I’d share a Gingerbread recipe that I’m going to try tonight…I’ve been craving gingerbread for some reason. The recipe is from a 1946 copy of Woman’s Home Companion Cook Book, page 718.

Cake Flour, 2 cups
Baking powder, 2 teaspoons
Baking soda, 1/4 teaspoon
Salt, 1/2 teaspoon
Ginger, 1-1/2 teaspoons
Cinnamon, 1 teaspoon
Shortening, 1/3 cup
Sugar, 1/2 cup
Egg, 1
Molasses, light, 2/3 cup
Sour milk or buttermilk, 3/4 cup

Sift flour; measure; add baking powder, soda, salt and spices; sift again.

Cream shortening; add sugar gradually; cream together until light and fluffy.

Add well-beaten egg (unbeaten if electric mixer is used); beat thoroughly; add molasse.

Add dry ingredients alternately with sour milk or buttermilk, stirring only enough after each addition to blend thoroughly.

Pour into a greased square pan 8x8x2 inches.Bake in a moderate oven (350F) about 50 minutes.

Serve with whipped cream

If you want you can use this batter for an Apple Gingerbread Upside-down Cake: Follow instructions for apple upside-down cake (p. 717), substituting gingerbread batter for dessert cake batter:

Melt 3 tablespoons butter in a cake pan; add 1/4 cup brown sugar firmly packed and 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon; cover with about 2-1/2 cups apple wedges cut from firm cooking apples; sprinkle with raisins and pecan halves. Pour batter over fruit and proceed as directed above. (bake in a moderate oven (350F) 45-50 minutes. Invert pan on a cooling rack; let cake remain in inverted pan 1 minute to allow sirup to drain onto cake. Serve with whipped cream.


The peach tree is starting to bloom!

Lilacs are leafing out and growing blooms.

Lucy starting a great adventure...didn't get very far. World's too big for the wee lass.

4 star blocks finished for Hannah's lap quilt.

I’ve been reading Miss Read’s Chronicles of Fairacre (set in the 1950’s English countryside) ~ the first three books comprising of Village School, Village Diary and Storm in the Village. Thanks April for the recommendation! Last night while reading I found this very funny to me so I thought I’d share (told you my brain has turned to mush).

Pages 167-168, Chronicles of Fairacre, 1977 copy (the school was holding “sports”):

Perhaps the high-light of the afternoon was an unrehearsed incident. Mrs. Pratt’s white goat, attracted by the noise, had broken her collar and pushed through the hedge to see what was going on. Fastidiously, walking with neat, dainty steps, she approached the backs of the spectators and before anyone had noticed her, she picked up the hem of Mrs. Partridge’s flowered silk frock. Gradually, the goat worked it into her mouth, a sardonic smile curling her lips, tossing her head gently up and down, until at last a sudden tug caused the vicar’s wife to look round and the hue and cry began.

Startled, the goat skipped away under the rope and charged down to see its friends, who were waiting, in pairs with their legs tied together, to run in the three-legged race. Squealing with excitement, and weak with laughter, they lumbered off in all directions, the goat prancing among them, bleating. Confusion reigned, some children sprawled on the grass, others attempted to capture the goat, and others rushed yelling to their parents. At last Mr. Willet grabbed the animal’s horns and slipped a rope noose over her head. Resigning herself to capture, the goat trotted meekly after him to the gate, accompanied by many young admirers.


Garden update: Boxes still not made, but I did get them sawed into 4 foot lengths. I’ve repotted the tomatoes, corn, and cucumbers. Took them outside last Saturday, placed them on the plant rack with a screen over them so they didn’t get direct sunlight. Perked them up! They’re back inside.

For Today ~ 8 April 2010 ~ Simple Woman’s Daybook

FOR TODAY … 8 April 2010

Outside My Window… Sunshine. Hoping it stays a while. Still a bit chilly in the mornings. People coming into work.

I am thinking… I have to finish the department budget module…but am having troubles. Big Sigh. I still can’t figure out why people drive so slow coming out of Sun Valley. 45 mph folks! Not 30! I need a cup of Green Tea with Jasmine.

I am thankful for… my friends.

From the kitchen… Artichokes and baked chicken.

I am wearing… Jeans, tennies, and a pumpkin orange cotton shirt, hair down.

I am creating… blocks for my niece’s lap quilt.

I am going… to go to Home Depot or Lowes at lunch to pick up the hardware for making my garden boxes. I’ve got the wood…THANKIES to my FIL. 🙂

I am reading… Thanks to April’s book list suggestion…I’m reading Miss Read’s Village School that is set in the 1950’s.

I am hoping… My constant wish ~ That everyone that is looking for a job, finds one. Adding one more onto the list…that my computer loan is accepted so I can buy myself a home computer.

I am hearing… ice machine, doors slamming, people out in the hallway, my office mate mumbling.

Around the house… My soon to be garden boxes!

One of my favorite things… Sunshine and warmer weather on a WEEKEND…not in the middle of the week when I’m at work.

A Few Plans For The Rest Of The Week… survive this week at work. Make garden boxes. Start more seeds inside. Prune the lilac bushes…I moved into a new house in January and just saw probably should cut off some dead stuffus from the lilacs. Start watering the plants. Plan a horse poo dump into the backyard for the garden.

Here is a picture thought I’d share with you…

Was watching Scooby-Doo after work yesterday…and I absolutely love this song…even after 30 years.

Dany Janssen’s Love the World Badada…badada…


The Simple Woman is the original home of The Simple Woman's Daybook.

Quilting Tools ~ What I use…What do You use?

My friend Donna has been shying away from quilt making because she is terrified of using the rotary cutter…see her post HERE. She also has pictures of everything she’s collected to make quilts, wanting to know what else she may need.

So I decided to list my favorite tools, books, and sites. For all you quilters out there…what are your favorites?

We’ll start with the mats, rulers, and cutters.

~ I’ve always had the OLFA 18×24 Self-Healing Rotary Mat, but Hancock Fabrics had the 24×36 size 40% off a couple of weeks ago…so guess what I bought?! 🙂

~ My favorite cutter? The ergonomic 45mm Olfa Deluxe Rotary Cutter with the safety lock.

~ I have lots of different rulers but these are my favorites:
O’Lipfa Lip Edge 5×24
O’Lipfa 12.5″ Square
Omnigrid 9.5″ Square
O’Lipfa 6.5″ Square
O’Lipfa 60° Angle
EZ Quilting 6.5″ Easy Angle
EZ Quilting Companion Angle
Dear Jane 4.5″ Square


Didn’t think I’d use this bobbin winder, but I just love it to death. I always buy two of the same thread, one is for winding bobbins. I wind up at least 3-4 bobbins before starting a project. Was $15 at my local Hancock Fabric store in Sparks.

Speaking of thread…I love the satin or silk-finished mercerized 100% cotton thread. I like Connecting Threads’ thread, Sulky Cotton Thread, and Mettler Silk-Finished Cotton Thread.


Thimbles…LOVE LOVE LOVE a simple Sterling Silver Tailor’s thimble for hand quilting. I don’t like regular thimbles. I use either this tailor or a Fons & Porter ring thimble.


Books…I’ve lots of books, here are some of them.

BUT…I really only use these six!

The Art of Classic Quiltmaking
Stars by Magic
The Crazy Quilt Handbook
Friendship Triangles (I’m a triangle and pinwheel fiend…great book for me, maybe not for you)
Scrap Quilts ~ The Art of Making Do
Basic Applique


For inspiration, ideas, supplies and patterns ~ I love these online sites:

Supplies & Fabric ~

Hancock’s of Paducah
Connecting Threads
Wish Upon A Quilt
Fat Quarter Shop

For Patterns and Ideas ~

Moda Bake Shop
Quilters’ Cache

My Favorite Quilting Blogs for inspiration and tutorials ~

p.s. I Quilt
Tula Pink
Quilt Obsession
Sew Katie Did
Red Pepper Quilts
Oh, Fransson!
Quilts Your Way

My friend April and I bounce lots of ideas off each other throughout the day…we are each other’s enabler! 🙂 Ohhh! Did you see this? This fabric is sooooo cute! Blah Blah Blah. BUY THIS! LOL!

There are a lot MORE…but me thinks I’m running out of room. 🙂 All you’d have to do is click on the above and check out their favorite blogs!


Sewing Machines…well, that’s a personal preference and mine is JANOME! I had a Janome 6500P, but it was destroyed last year. Yes…I still tear up. Until I can afford to buy myself another, I am sewing on a Janome Threadbanger and a Singer 301.

Monday Rambles ~ 5 April 2010

SNOW! It’s cold and grey and there’s SNOW on the ground…again!

He’s not really has happy as he seems.



Mark your calendar! It’s May 22nd this year.


Finished the Jelly Bean block…will turn it into Ben Franklin Crafts after work today.

Also made another block, but I’m not sure this one will fly as the rules say the Jelly Bean fabric has to be the dominate fabric…it’s sorta 50/50 in this block.


Some pictures of Leo and Lucy…more Leo than Lucy. 🙂

What you can’t see is that both are lying on top of the heater vent…with the heat blasting.

Leo watching the birds on Saturday…before the snow.

Oooohhhh…he’s got a snoot full of snot in that one nostril!


funny pictures of dogs with captions
see more dog and puppy pictures

funny pictures of cats with captions
see more Lolcats and funny pictures

Quilt Blocks ~ What I’m Working On

The same day that the quilt contest voting started at Ben Franklin Crafts…they called me up to say I won March’s quilt blocks! Woo Hoo!

Every month you buy what looks to be almost a 1/8 yard of fabric for 99 cents and make a quilt block. Then you bring it back in and your name is put into a basket. First day of the next month they draw a name.

Here are the blocks I won…

The fabric was that lime green floral one. Can you pick mine out? I’ll give you a hint…it’s the brightest one there! Me thinks I will take mine out and just use the other nine…put the not so bright purple one in the middle of them all.

Here is April’s fabric:

And here is my block so far…I um…hmmm…sorta ran out of the fabric before I could finish the block. All I need is 3″x3″! Sheesh.