Tag Archives: crafting

Granddaughter’s Quilt Progress

IT’S DONE!!!  My grandaughter, Victoria, asked me last year to make her a quilt for Christmas.

Our 21 year old granddaughter!

I finished the quilt today!!  I’ll get it to her sometime this week.  It usually doesn’t take me a year to do a quilt because I have a friend that quilts and binds it after I do the piecing.  My friend isn’t doing it anymore so I completed it all by hand.  Thank the good Lord it was a simple quilt.  The following is a place in time for my quilting adventure with my granddaughter:

Victoria was so excited that it was completed that she stopped by and had supper with us so she could take it home.  It thrills my heart that she wanted something that her grandmother made with her own hands just for her!!! 

Maybe now I’ll complete the other two quilts I started a couple years ago!!  Stranger things have happened!!  🙂

Making Calendars

For the last four or five years I have enjoyed making personal calendars for my family and it’s a gift that they can enjoy all year-long.  I’ve started calendars for this year but they are a work in progress.

I have an old computer program that I got years ago called “Greeting Card Factory”  and I use it to format my calendars and I also use it when I want to make “special greeting cards.  It’s awesome and I’m not sure there is a newer version on the market or not.

Once I get the main format set up I can add photos, special dates, different fonts,  and the list goes on and on.

This is an image of a month I did for my Granddaughter last Christmas. I had all sorts of photos on it of her and her animals. I think she liked it!!

The format is so easy to use and I use all sorts of special papers with the calendar as well but most of the pages are using card stock.

This apparatus is used to punch holes in the pages so they flip easily.

The plastic coil that holds the calendar together fits on this apparatus making it easy to put the calendars together.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Calendars are great stocking stuffers and as I said previously they’re a gift your family and friends can enjoy all year round!!  Adding family birth dates and anniversaries is a great addition and make the calendar date blocks a little large makes for a day planner, too!!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Idea Book

I love to blog about things I make or decorate with and most of those ideas come from this book.

Journal of Ideas

Journal of Ideas

The book is almost three inches thick.

The book is almost three inches thick.

Indoor and outdoor projects.

Indoor and outdoor projects.

I started this one in October and it's almost full.

I started this one in October and it’s almost full.

Everything from decor, useful tools, and so much more.

Everything from decor, useful tools, and so much more.

There's enough ideas in this book to keep me busy the rest of my life and then some.

There’s enough ideas in this book to keep me busy the rest of my life and then some.

Ideas found on Facebook, Pinterest, and magazines I receive monthly.  I don't keep a lot of magazines anymore.  I copy the ideas I want to make and pass the magazines on to my daughter and she passes them on to her friends.

Ideas found on Facebook, Pinterest, and magazines I receive monthly. I don’t keep a lot of magazines anymore. I copy the ideas I want to make and pass the magazines on to my daughter and she passes them on to her friends.

Projects pasted into the journal.

Projects pasted into the journal.

Journal of Ideas #2

Journal of Ideas #2

Indoor and outdoor projects.

Indoor and outdoor projects.

My bookshelf is my keeping area for all of the project ideas.

My bookshelf is my keeping area for all of the project ideas.

As I pull ideas from the book I’ll post about them with details.  I sure hope this resolution proves to be beneficial to me and ideas for someone else.

Absence makes the heart grow . . .

fonder and I hope a fresh catch up on my blog.  This summer has flown by and this gal has been topsy-turvy all summer. I hope to remedy that soon and settle into a calmer routine.

To start with the blog has been quiet due to family and work.  In earlier posts I noted that little brother was having some health issues and thank the good Lord above and lots of prayers from family and friends those issues aren’t as bad as expected.  A biopsy was completed on his prostrate after antibiotics were used and the issues remained.  The doctor expected cancer but the results were benign, praise Jesus!!!  The doctors are now treating him for high blood pressure but have released him to compete in Special Olympics and he’s very excited about that.  He will be competing in bowling, swimming and possibly softball and basketball.  Dean is also very happy because he is working three days a week at the James River Enterprise recycling center and loves taking that paycheck to the bank twice a month.  I was told last week that he has the best production of any of his colleagues there that have been working for 13 years.  He still attends “Life Skills” school twice a week.  This summer has been really full for him socially too.  He’s taken trips to Mill Mountain Zoo, The Science Museum in Roanoke, flea markets and festivals, Mill Mountain Playhouse and this weekend is supposed to have gone to the West Virginia State Fair.  He seems quite happy and rarely calls me now but I still call him every week and visit him every other weekend when he’s home.

The other thing that has kept me away from my blog during the week is a change in employment.  On July 25th, I started a new job at Virginia Tech in the Aerospace and Engineering Department and it’s so very exciting.  This job just fell in my lap with a call from my daughters mother-in-law and within two weeks I had the job.  More pay, different working hours and change in scenery have been a great thing for me!!  I miss the colleagues at the Coal & Energy Center but still run into them on campus and talk with them through email.  They were a wonderful group of people!!!

Of course, the garden and homework will always keep me busy and here’s some highlights of what’s going on at home:

Making pickles and I love the smells pickling spice send in the air.

Making pickles and I love the smells pickling spice send in the air.

Abundance of squash and what in the world do I do with it all???    Give it to anyone that will take it, of course!!

Abundance of squash and what in the world do I do with it all??? Give it to anyone that will take it, of course!!

Beautiful applesauce, cooked off, and in the freezer!

Beautiful applesauce, cooked off, and in the freezer!

Canning, canning and more canning!

Canning, canning and more canning!

Kitchen table is staying covered with produce from the garden.

Kitchen table is staying covered with produce from the garden.

Sterlizing jars of all sizes and filling up the cellar.

sterilizing jars of all sizes and filling up the cellar.

Gorgeous English cucumbers for canning pickles, eating raw, for salads and of course, for friends and family!!

Gorgeous English cucumbers for canning pickles, eating raw, for salads and of course, for friends and family!!

Green peppers and the plants are full of them.

Green peppers and the plants are full of them.

Banana peppers by the baskets full!

Banana peppers by the baskets full!

Gorgeous Kennebec potatoes bigger than my hand.

Gorgeous Kennebec potatoes bigger than my hand.

These came from two hills and I cooked some with fresh green beans and we baked some for supper last night.  SOOOO good!

These came from two hills and I cooked some with fresh green beans and we baked some for supper last night. SOOOO good!

Mr. Stripey and German Pink tomatoes are being picked daily to keep the chickens from getting them.

Mr. Stripey and German Pink tomatoes are being picked daily to keep the chickens from getting them.

Golden nectar from the honeybees again.  We got 13 quarts with comb and 1 quart of strained.  We lost a lot of bees last winter but the ones that made are working so hard!  We may get one more super before we end the season!

Golden nectar from the honeybees again. We got 13 quarts with comb and 1 quart of strained. We lost a lot of bees last winter but the ones that made are working so hard! We may get one more super before we end the season!

More baby chicks!  Last two hatches produced four each.

More baby chicks! Last two hatches produced four each.

And of course, a little bit of crafting.  More details on this in a new post.

And of course, a little bit of crafting. More details on this in a new post.

Mansion craft room

We have a beautiful old house on the property that was the families original home in the 1800’s.  Right now it’s used mainly for storage, has no heat and no electricity within the house.   It’s been in the family for at five, maybe six generations.

 

"The Mansion"

“The Mansion”

The Mansion

The Mansion

It was and still could be a beautiful home if we were rich!

It was and still could be a beautiful home if we were rich!

Back of the house and looking into the kitchen window where the playing will be done!

Back of the house and looking into the kitchen window where the playing will be done!

I’m in the process of turning the kitchen into a crafting/DIY room for all of my projects that can’t be done in my quilting/sewing room.  Electricity could be used for small hand tools and some lighting but first I need to clean it out and get it organized.  I may have to call a friend in the fair state of Maryland for this undertaking.   Everytime we get together we find “treasures” in the mansion.

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From this picture you can tell I’ve started the clean out and still have some more junk and treasures to move.

 

Great table for working on and storage underneath.

Great table for working on and storage underneath.

Wood cookstove and chair that has possibilities.

Wood cookstove and chair that has possibilities.

Junk and treasures.

Junk and treasures.

Other side of the great work table.

Other side of the great work table.

Table and a cart for storage!!  YIPPEE!

Table and a cart for storage!! YIPPEE!

Kitchen sink covered with junk and treasure.  Storage under the sink in the way of shelving and drawers.  I see it coming together!!! :)

Kitchen sink covered with junk and treasure. Storage under the sink in the way of shelving and drawers. I see it coming together!!! 🙂

Through the door in the last picture is an enclosed porch where I start my plants and “greenhouse”!!  In the back of the room is a place for a woodstove but that would take up too much room.  This would be used mainly in the three warmer seasons of the year, when I’m not doing ANYTHING else!  RIGHT!!!

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This window is going to be one of the first projects I’ll be working on but that’s will be in a couple months, I expect!!

 

Looks like I got some great things to work on this summer when I can’t get out in the sun!!  Updates on my progress will be coming soon!!

 

 

 

 

Spring cleaning and Granddaughter’s Help

I spent my entire Saturday, March 22nd, “starting” the spring cleaning in my kitchen.  By starting, I mean those beautiful shelves my hubby put up on both sides of the length of my kitchen up near the ceiling is where I’ve started this year.  I didn’t get to them at all last year and decided they would be first this year.

Shelving runs lengthwise in my 30 ft kitchen on both sides.

Shelving runs lengthwise in my 30 ft kitchen on both sides.

The shelves hold a lot of my antique kitchen items and farm animals (ceramic of course).

The shelves hold a lot of my antique kitchen items and farm animals (ceramic of course).

Several crocks and lots of roosters and hens.  The shelving boards came from lumber we sawed from the farm and I finished.

Several crocks and lots of roosters and hens. The shelving boards came from lumber we sawed from the farm and I finished.

It took all day to clean and put them back and my granddaughter climbed up and handed down everything to me and I washed and dried it all and she put it back.  It was work but we had a good time catching up.  While I was washing everything she was crafting for me.

First she twined a bottle for me.  This will be placed in my family room.

First she twined a bottle for me. This will be placed in my family room.

She used polymer clay to make this flowers and bows to attach to some of our projects.

She used polymer clay to make this flowers and bows to attach to some of our projects.

This clay was white but when it baked it turned to a very light beige which made it look old.

This clay was white but when it baked it turned to a very light beige which made it look old.

Some she embellished with a light blue and some with white.  They're very delicate looking.

Some she embellished with a light blue and some with white. They’re very delicate looking.

Victoria enjoyed doing them so much she took a picnic basket full of bottles, twine and clay home with her to make me some more and I’ll post them when she is finished.

I'm so glad she loves crafting almost as much as I do.

I’m so glad she loves crafting almost as much as I do.

Those fingers working the clay just perfect.

Those fingers working the clay just perfect.

She has a delicate touch!

She has a delicate touch!

The spring cleaning in the kitchen is an on-going process and now it’s time to do the other shelf and all that it holds.

Easy as pie egg-blowing but not for children!!!

DSCN2827Over the last three years, I’ve found all sizes of eggs that the hens have left for me but the little guys in the photo above are real treasures.  I use them throughout the house as decorations.  I use them in my antique egg crate in the kitchen.

Antique egg crate & chickens

Antique egg crate & chickens

I use them in bird nests for decorations and wreaths.  The best part is I found a very easy way to get the whites and, if any, yolks out of the eggs so they won’t rot and become a nasty odor for the room they’re in.  I used to take a large sewing needle and gently drill a hole in the both ends of the egg and blow it out but that took time and a lot more breath than I have nowadays.  You will want to use the following method when there are no children around just to be on the safe side and you’ll understand what I’m talking about once you see the tool I use.

DSCN2831We keep these syringes on hand for giving the animals they’re worm shots and other vaccines when needed.  The tips of those needles are very, very sharp.

DSCN2832The needle point should be small and I can’t remember the gauge we use but if you ask at your local farm store, ask for the gauge to use on small animals such as cats and dogs.

First step is to make sure your eggs are clean and NOT old.  The syringe comes in three parts: needle, syringe base and plunger.  Next push the plunger as far in the base as possible (after you put the needle in the base).  Gentle holding the egg and careful how you place the needle, gently push the needle into the large end of the egg (you will be surprised how easily it goes in the shell, no drilling).  Hold the egg in one hand, positioning  the egg over the hand holding the needle.  I apologize for not having a photo to explain but it’s hard to take a picture and do this at the same time.  Try to picture your fists folded and one fist on top and one fist on the bottom (make sense?).

The next step is to keep the needle in the egg and gently pull the plunger out to the end of the base.  You’ll see the clear white of the egg pull into the syringe. Pull the entire syringe out of the egg and push the plunger back into the base pushing the egg white into a dish or some kind of container.  I usually do this over the kitchen sink and let the running water wash it down the drain.  Do this whole procedure again until you feel you have gotten the white entirely out of the egg.

After emptying the last bit out of the syringe, fill the syringe with water (it’ll suck out of a glass of water w/a touch of dish detergent or bleach really easy).  Put the syringe back in the egg  and fill it with the water (gently) and pull it out and emptying the sink again.  I usually do this four or five times just to make sure it’s clean and make sure you entirely get all the water solution out of the egg.  Repeat the cleaning as many times as you feel it takes to clean the egg.  Set your little egg up to air dry for several days and where it won’t get knocked off and broken.  I store them in an egg carton until I’m ready to use them in my decorations.   This is so much easier but you just have to be careful using the needle.

These are some of the eggs I’ve used with this tool:

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Treasures from the apple orchard

Hubby was cleaning up apple trees brought down by the duratio last summer and he brought me these treasures!!  I’m so excited!!

Apple tree stumps

Hollow apple tree stumps

Three hollow tree logs for crafting.

Three hollow tree logs for crafting.

Fuzzy thinks this one would be good for squirrels!

Fuzzy thinks this one would be good for squirrels!

I think the first two will be new birdhouses as I like to use natural things to make the birds feel more at home.  All I’ll have to do is screw on some barnwood to the bottom and top and drill a small hole for the bluebirds to enter.  Drill holes in the bottom board for drainage.  I like to use screws so I can take the top off in the winter and clean them out for arrivals in the spring.  I like to put a little overhang on the top to keep the weather out and a place for the bird parents to perch between food breaks.   I also put a short perch in the front right below the entry for them to perch while feeding the fledglings.

The third one though will make a perfect nest for the next orphan squirrel we save.  We tend to find them in the woods fallen from their nests.  If their bodies are still warm we let Mom come back to get them and carry them back to the nests.  If their bodies are cold, I snatch them up in my pocket and get them home quick as possible and feed them some warm milk with a little honey to warm them up and boost the energy.

Baby squirrels are so easy to care for and they usally bond with only one person after being orphaned and thats usually whoever feeds and bathes them.

Baby squirrels are so easy to care for and they usally bond with only one person after being orphaned and thats usually whoever feeds and bathes them.

 

Hubby is always looking out for things in the woods that he knows I’ll put to good use.  We’ve been looking for a hollow tree about five to six feet long to make into a flower box for the yard or the gazebo.  I’ve also been looking for just the right knarly stump to put in one of my flower beds for the natural look.  You will see it when I find it 😉 .