Blessed by everyday blessings

these are a few of my favorite things

~smiling faces~

~hugs and kisses from grandchildren
and hearing the name Nanny from far away places~

~mostly old sometimes new~

~quilts with love stitched through and through

~Babies and butterflys and all things created~

~To know you are loved makes life sweet with grace traces ~


Wednesday, February 29, 2012

THANK YOU MODA for the challenge!

Because I've never entered a sewing competition before please be gentle. I don't have a clue as to what exactly the judges are looking for but no matter if I win or if I am instantly Sliced, I already feel like a winner!  To decide to take part in this challenge has really been a  good thing for me.  Any one who can design something, make it and finish it in less than a week is already a winner in my book.  And I did that!  So WHOO- HOO for me!

The challenge set by MODA  in the SLICED competition was to create an accessory for your office or studio. 
 Read more about it here:

You must include these 3 things in your accessory.
1 type of precut---check
a buckle---check
and batting.----check

here is my precut fabric.
I chose to use ONE  5 inch square charm pack.
and I used all but one square in the pack.

Here is the buckle I used. I think you can probably still buy them
mine happens to be vintage, at least 29 years old.
It is from an infant seat used with one of my girls.
It is a type of gripper buckle. it has little teeth on the edges.

The buckle

 attached to the fabric bar can be used as an indicator. 
It  is able to slide along the bar between the arrows.
As a quilter when you press your seams
you press each seam either to the left or right
or up or down.
Each row is different so that each seam nests together.
When you start connecting your blocks and rows they fit better
if you have alternated the direction of your pressed seams.

For batting I  used one layer of
 Pellon thermolan Plus
heavy needled fleece
100 % polyester
sandwiched between

two layers of Pellon natural Plus batting
without scrim 80% cotton 20% polyester

And now for the reveal of my entry for the competition....
 Drum Roll Please
I'm really thrilled to present to you
 MY very own,  designed by me...
hot off the press,
" Pick me up Pressing Pad"
It goes anywhere you need it to go.
No hassel.
lots of rewards!
it makes me me smile just carrying it around.

size is 301/2 X26 1/2

with matching pin cushion

I can never remember which way my last seam was pressed,
and I would always have to recheck my last block before
I pressed.
It's not a problem any more. Just slide the buckle left or right.
(this pic is still in progress to the finish)

this is the back of the pressing pad
the color is not coming through very well
backing is Bella Solid light blue.

appliqued squares on back of pad

all tied up ready to travel

reversible use either side for pressing

blanket stitch
Heat and bond lite used for each letter

pressing pad is tied with DMC Pearle Cotton,
giving it extra charm.

Another view of the sliding buckle.
Recycled denim used for sliding bar between arrows

this square is attached with a running stitch using DMC Floss
to the top after it is pieced

all rolled up back side outside.

Other Moda fabrics used to complement my design
Red polk-a-dot: Hometown by Sweetwater
Bella solids light blue used for back of pressing pad
Dark blue: Quilts of Valor Minick and Simpson
used for border and binding.

vintage button used on star for pin cushion

This has all been just a dream. 
I started this project on Friday and finished it today.
Now I guess tomorrow will be back to reality.
Could someone please come and clean my sewing room :)
can't create with out a mess now can we?
thanks for letting me rave.

As soon as I finish this post I will be submitting photos to Moda as a participant in this Sliced  competition.  My heart is beating wildly!

happy trails

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

MODA, moda, MODA,

This is what has been playing in my head  just about every day for the last 2 week.

WOW that is some prize pack,

  HUM,    maybe,    NO

yes  ,  I wonder,  NO,

yes,  HUM,  I have a charm pack, no,


 I am creative.....

 just open the door and see what happens...

A couple of weeks ago I caught wind of a sewing competition sponsored by MODA.

read all about it here......     sliced


So I thought, why not just for the heck of it;
think about it and see what you can come up with.

It would be a good thing to challenge your brain.
So for the last few days the crunch has been on and I have been saying
YES to the challenge...

Come up with an accessory to use in my sewing space.

 Tomorrow is the deadline!

I am not sure if it will pass the mustard but....

I really did come up with something,

and now if all goes as planned today,

 I am going to be entering the sliced competition!
just for the Smile that it will put on my face
 to think I really did this.

I think the S's are all lining Up.

This is  a bit Scarry.
 my daughter said, " I think it is cute".
 I have been Stitching,
Sewing Strips and Squares .
 I am using a fabric designed by Minick and Simpson

just a touch of Some Sweetwater fabric to hopefully Swoon the judges,
bella Solid as blue as the Sky,
there will be a Star or two ,
 Anne Sutton from Bunny Hill  is one of the judges.  

I have maybe more than a few other projects
started on that IShould be working on !

all for the love of an adventure i am being Sidetracked!

  I think it is really going to happen!

And you know  it has all been great for my thinking cap whether I win or loose!

and as a plus I now have  a new pincushion!
I love a plan that all comes together!

i'll be back Soon!

There I actually said it can't back out now :). 

Friday, February 24, 2012

THREE Gifts before 11:00 am




God sending me some love today :)

Ann Voskamp

live fully right where you are

are you reading it?

It's Friday remember to be Faith- full !
"God is always good and I am always loved"  Ann Voskamp

may your day be blessed!

Thursday, February 23, 2012

better than a box chocolate cake

OK here it is...  the recipe for the


If there is a request for Cake at our Birthday celebrations
 this is the one we always use.

We always do it in a plain ole cake pan.
Yes my children are deprived of fancy cakes,
 but I haven't heard anyone complain. :)
 One taste and you will be hooked!

Sorry no pictures it is not a fancy in the pan cake
but I promise you ,
you will NEVER bake a box chocolate cake  again
after you taste this cake.


(I try to cut sugar and salt in most of my recipes)

3 CUPS  all purpose flour
2 CUPS  white sugar ( I use 1 3/4 cup) edit ...so sorry I just noticed I left out 1 cup sugar in the above parenthesis the amount 1 3/4 cup is now correct
5 TBS cocoa powder
1 tsp salt (I use 1/2 tsp )
2 tsp soda
2 CUPS  cold water
2 TBS. white vinegar
1 CUP vegetable oil (I like Safflower oil but any will do)
2 tsp vanilla

Mix flour and sugar in a large bowl.  Place cocoa, salt and soda in a sifter and sift until empty over flour and sugar. My cocoa is always a bit lumpy and this makes for easier mixing. If you don't have a sifter, mix cocoa with part of the sugar or flour in a small bowl to remove any cocoa lumps before adding it to the large bowl.

Make a well in the dry ingredients add all of liquid ingredients.  Mix well with mixer or wire whisk. I  mix until all is blended about 1 minute.  I use a whisk.

Grease 9X13cake pan .  Pour batter into pan. Push cake batter up into corners of pan a little bit before baking. (it is my secret to a cake that doesn't bake skimpy in the corners and  thick in the center.)

Bake 350*  35-40 minutes until toothpick tests clean. 
When you start to smell the cake it is close to being done.

Allow cake to cool for 10 min then start making your frosting.

1 CUP Brown Sugar
5 TBS Butter
3 TBS milk

1/2 CUP semi sweet chocolate chips  (I use Hersheys)

 In a medium sauce pan bring sugar, oleo and milk to a full boil .
 TURN OFF HEAT, if using electric stove take off burner
Then add 1/2 cup semi sweet chocolate chips.
Stir frosting until chips are melted.

Now beat 3 1/2 minutes with electric mixer on high speed tilting pan towards you to mix.

Frost cake as soon as frosting is done. Cake will still be warm.  Once you pour it on the cake the frosting sets up very quickly. Make it as pretty as you can as quick as you can.

love someone today!


Thursday, February 16, 2012


This is Cassie on the day of her birthday.
getting some auntie loving!
(i think it was one of those crazy hair days for you emmy
but your smile is beautiful!)

they are identical..... I can tell you two were cut from the same cloth!
same cheek bones , same chinny chin chin , same lips,  wow.

isn't God amazing.
He makes family members all look alike!
 just in case you ever get lost.
you can find your way back home!

FEBRUARY 6, 2012
22 years old!
did you notice the two 2's in the year 2012
must be a magical birthday year!

22 years old in 2012!
now you  I can always remember how old you are.
 thanks for helping your old and forgetful mom out!
I don't think I ever put that together before.
if I did.... I forgot :(
next year
23 in 2013
yes it is a light bulb moment!

this is the day we are actually CELEBRATING!
just a week late..... not too bad.

is it ever like that at your house???

EMERSON  helped me with the party decorations.
let me state that again....
I helped Emerson... she was in charge!
I was just the girl with the supplies!

SO....there were
hot pink and silver sparkles on the table
pink streamers down the center
we are not looking for a tablescaping award.....
 just a little PARTY atmosphere
and some extra love!

EVERYTHING is her idea...
i just smile and help.

The boy chairs got blue crepe paper TIES

the girl chairs got pink crepe paper BOWS
(going all out here with left over party supplies)

remember the year you felt like a

2006 prom

We  just wanted you to know
how much we all love you!
and not much has changed over the years.....
Always a

Four days after the party this is what is left..
an empty house with just  me and the dogs
your smile is still fresh in my mind ,
your laughter is missed  
2 pieces of the
crying out for me to eat them!
(recipe maybe later if you want it)

and now a few boys later.....

it's a wild and crazy life
but it is a good life!

If I had to do it all over again,
 I guess I'd choose to birth girls again :) 

I've leaned on more than a few of
God's promises through the years.
I have just a few gray hairs.....
not sure if
#1 you gave them to me
or(perhaps and more likely)
#2 your older sisters
 may have had a slight role in that
#3 it is just cause I"M  older and wiser :)

I'm sure you are all thinking it has to be #3 
because you are all angels now!

today  it doesn't matter
my hair color update yesterday has got you covered :)

You are beautiful Cassie,
You are growing up,
and your mom still loves you!!

today I'm thanking God for the precious gift that you are.

have a wonderful year being 22!

ps I forgot I had a little something else  for your birthday.
that is what happens when you buy it in DEC!

I'll be in the attic sewing if you need me :)

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Happy Valentines Day!


Bryce and I went to a Sweetheart Supper last night put on by the youth at our church.
I'm not sure that there will be any
 "extra" gifts of love going on here today.
sometimes there are flowers and sometimes not,
 sometimes just extra hugs and kisses :)
I like cards but my husband thinks they are a waste of MONEY.
Have you heard of couples that just give each other
 the same card again year after year?
I think my husband would smile at the thought.

Tonight we will both go to bed 
 and tomorrow will be another day.  
It won't be Valentines day
but it will still be a day to love one another.
we can always work on that.

Last week I was sent A BIG REMINDER
  those whom God has gifted to me TODAY
sometimes the gifts are easy to recognize
my children,
CASSIE marie

Happy Valentines Day sweet children! 

I love you
sweet daughters and granddaughters :)

sometimes the gifts can't be seen unless
 I intentionally open my eyes to look for them.

Life is always in such a state of hurry .
I think I do ok loving my family
 but what about outside of that?
In my church family and in my community .
 God has been whispering ,
 there is time, make time ,
to reach out and love someone outside of your little family today.
This week try i am going to try and connect with someone.
and then next week do it again,
and again,
and again.

A little boy , 10 years old  from our church just found out last week that he has a brain tumor
If you are a prayer warrior, would you please pray for TJ and his family.
He has been very brave.
He loves Jesus and knows he will go to heaven if he is not cured.

He is the oldest and he has 3 very sweet brothers. 
If you would want to pray for this family you can read more here

There has been such an outpouring of love for this family.

I called a friend today.
We made plans to go for lunch this week.

we all need it!

I love you sweet Emerson!
you are a sweet treasure!
Happy valentines day!

LOVE of cousins

thank you God for the blessings you pour out daily.
you fill my heart.

I love you Addilyn Grace.  you are such a sugar pie.
Happy Valentines day.

"i love you",
I am going to be working on that.


PS edit.......my husband sent me an e-mail on valentines day.
"would you, could you, be my valentine?"
how's that for loving :)
my response.... (another e-mail :)  )
we will be married 30 years this year
 and I think he has asked me the same question for 30 years
 cause he just like to say it.
 it makes me smile.


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