A Stitch In Time …Quilting

Today I finished my biggest project to date, a full size quilt. Take a peak.

Chicken Quilt

While it has not made it to my bed yet because I literally just finished it minutes ago but was so excited about its completion I wanted to share.

While I get it is not a complicated pieced quilt, and I have done those, this one has gotten me through this nightmare that we have endured the last few years.

Yes I can hear the comments now, “It took you two years to complete I could have made several in that length of time”. Yes, I get it could have been done quicker. Let me explain, this is not my only hobby and was not my only project. This was also not quilted on a frame but in my lap. The squares and borders were sewed together a row at a time after the individual squares were quilted.

It has not been a complicated project but a labor of love. Love of the art of quilting. I actually acquired the fabric for this quilt several years earlier on a camping trip to the mountains. We landed in Marion, NC. It is a quaint small town that has barn quilts on almost every single building. In addition to being a great photo op it gave me the opportunity to drop by their little quilt shop.

For two years the fabric sat in my stash of other potential quilt options. When Covid hit I said it was the perfect time to start the quilt. Striving for perfection was not the objective, just to get a finish during a stressful time was the goal. So that I would not get stressed over the quilt I also worked on other projects.

Two weeks ago my husband says to me “Are you ever going to finish that quilt”. He was anxious as well to see it complete. So I put my other projects aside and finished seaming the last row of blocks. The last two days have been spent gently binding edges. This morning my husband cooked breakfast. When he brought breakfast to me, I was in my office where I could watch the birds and our favorite rabbit. Again the quilt bundled in my lap would probably look a “hot mess” to most people. I proudly showed my husband the last few stitches I had to make. And his remark, “Are you going to sell it?” No I responded because two years of my life was tied up in this quilt!

It might be a while before I undertake another project like this but do plan to make some lap quilts for donation.

If you have never quilted but would like to learn check out your local community College, quilt shops or center for the arts for classes.

Thanks for following and don’t forget to share this blog.

Have a great and blessed day.

Camping – Trip 2 / Goose Creek State Park

This trip we decided to continue in the State Park system and visit Goose Creek. While it is beautiful grassy wetlands, we were ill prepared for the lack of shade trees.

Here’s the good, bad and ugly of Goose Creek. The only bad was the lack of shade trees as stated above. The ugly was the nasty weather we got last night. And then there was the good, which was a lot.

We didn’t do a lot on the day of arrival other than setup and get used to our new environment. On day two we got up and got ready for our first walking trip down to the swimming access.

It was a nice sandy path down to the river.

These wetlands proved to be a different kind of shooting adventure.

This is approaching the actual swimming area.

The following pictures are from the pier/boat ramp area.

Yesterday morning before the storm we went up into Washington and I got these two pics.

If you are in the Washington, NC area check out Goose Creek State Park. A great place to just unwind.

Stay safe and have a great day.

Camping 2022 – First Trip

Our first trip out we chose Kings Mountain State Park. The main reason we chose this park was because we wanted to check out Two Kings Casino. While we had no aspirations of “winning big” we actually ended up spending little time in the casino and more time in the great outdoors.

Getting there was a great big hiccup as the GPS said it was only 4 hours and 8 minutes…..WRONG! It took us six hours to get there fighting high winds and high traffic. Our trailer swayed like it had no bars attached! The campground was not on a mountain but as we entered it there was certainly similarities in that the road was narrow and curving around foothills.

Arriving at the park office I got out and was met by an attractive man that said “Sorry we’re full” and then just kind of giggled. I of course did not think it was really that funny but since he wasn’t bad to look I went along with the joke.

After parking on the lot I got out and left our door in the truck so we could set up. My husband rolled the window down for him which proved to be beneficial when moments later we hear this click….he had locked himself in the truck with the keys in it! My husband was able to get his arm in far enough to unlock the truck and remove his keys. It kind of fit our mischevious Roco.

With our camper finally set up, it was time to have some fun. Here are some pics from the park.

We have had this Apex almost five years…she still looks pretty good.
I love just shooting oddities of nature.
There were Dogwoods everywhere here.
I took several shots of this little squirrel playing in the trees.
There were two lakes in this park. This is the spillway at the smaller lake.
This and the following shots are from the vintage farm on the property.
This little jackass was content in the field

These beautiful horses were grazing nearby.
This building I thought was interesting as it was an old cotton gin.
This is the underside of the gin.

Thanks for going on this journey with me. Pass it on, take a kid camping.

Have a blessed day.

From Rags To Bags

At a time when luxuries are out of the question, I try to recycle when possible. Here’s a recycle that is both practicle and completely free.

This piece of appliqued denim was formerly a section off the bottom of a midi skirt from the 80’s. The size of the applique dictated the size of the bag. After squaring off the block I rounded the corners at the bottom slightly. I then used this piece to cut the back and the lining sections. I then cut from the remaining denim I had about a two inch strip that would go about the bag section to form bottom and sides. Make sure you also cut this from your lining fabric. For strap cut another two inch strip for your desired length. Stitch the appliqued section and the matching back section to the side strip being careful to follow the curve at the bottom. For the strap, fold and stitch the length and turn. Press flat after turning and top stitch each side of the strap. Stich the strap ends between the denim and the lining. Folding the top of the denim and lining under, stitch all the way around the bag making sure you catch the straps in place.

While this project was time consuming, it was still fun.

Hope you enjoyed this project and that you will create a recycle bag if your own.

God bless and keep stitching.

Spring…a rebirth!

We all could use a rebirth at this time. Few things delight me more than watching the changes of spring. Already my fruit trees are waking up.

Already my apple tree has shown more growth than it has the last few years.

With the onset of spring comes many things. I have a list of “projects” already like pressure washing my deck, planting a garden, painting my storage/studio, and the list goes on.

Adjusting to the warmer weather does have its pitfalls like hay fever. Still, the days are more pleasant. While it is easy to get caught up in the turmoil of the world around us, I choose to enjoy life and every moment.

We will soon be planning our camping trips for the year. While I enjoyed the lavish lifestyle Atlantic City had to offer, I am happiest when my RV is parked next to a mountain stream.

Just taking in clean air has value. I guess that is why I love the mountains so much. They are particularly beautiful this time of year.

While I have finished a lot of needlework projects this year it is time to get more focused and get more into my art. I hope you will keep following and see where life takes me.

What is the one thing the devil can’t do….create, so be especially creative today!

Have an awesome day in God’s Grace!

Continuation of my Atlantic City Adventure

While on the boardwalk we ate at a great restaurant called Rainforest Cafe. The decor fit the name and included a few animated furry friends. The great thing about the restaurants we visited was the large amount of food that was served. All the food in AC is expensive. Since there was always plenty of food served we made a habit of telling our server we wanted to share the meal. Sharing is a great way to get the meals you want and share the cost.

While playing the slots was fun it was the people there that was the real entertainment. As an artist I learned early on observation is everything! There were people of all ages, races, and origins and lots of them. I don’t think I have ever observed so many people in one building.

It was a great time and a welcomed change. If you want take your own Atlantic City adventure contact Bob Kelly Tours or your local travel agent.

Life is too short to watch it go by. Be a part of it and plan an affordable adventure. You don’t have to spend a lot to have a great time. Just being with family can be an adventure.

Have a great day and don’t forget to put God first in your life!

An Adventure In Atlantic City

When my sister asked if I wanted to go to Atlantic City I could not turn her down. ONLY if you knew my husband and my dog could you fully appreciate my response.

We left out on Thursday, on a day that was less than perfect. When we get on the plane and the pilot says “It’s going to be a rough flight….”, it really made me question just how bad it would get. Leaving from Greenville in the rain I knew it would be a little rough. It really wasn’t that bad until we landed with a “BANG” on the tarmac.

We got off the plane and had to race to the front door of the airport to catch the bus to Harrah’s hotel and casino. We checked in and excitedly made our way to our assigned room, it was not the room we requested. Back down to customer relations we went. With a new assignment on the 15th floor we headed back to the elevator and up to our new room. Excited when we opened the door that it had the correct number of beds in it, we filed in and sat down in relief.

Moments later we saw this:

The Bay

Our view of the bay included broken glass. It was pointless to complain because the hotel was full. Even though there was another plate of glass I just shook my head. How could ANY hotel rent a room in this condition…oh it gets better!

The bathroom was great and spacious with a large shower but the door would not close completely. I looked up to see a huge crack in the door…the door is a good 2 inches!

Well, we were off to a good start. Apparently since Covid the hotels are using that as an excuse NOT to clean the rooms! So now we have a large room with a cracked window, a cracked bathroom door, and now apparently…we are the maids and there must have been a run on washcloths because we were told at that time there weren’t any. This was just Thursday on arrival.

After changing to comfortable shoes we went downstairs to eat and hit the casino floor. If you ever get any ideas about winning money in a casino….don’t!! We fed those stupid machines like they were starving! You can guess who came out on the starving end of that deal!

On Friday we took a little commuter bus called a Jitney over to the Tropicana for breakfast. A great little restaurant called the Gilchrist was calling our name. The food was great and so was the price. Afterwards we of course headed to the casino. We casino hopped between the Tropicana, Ceasars and the Wild West casinos. We took our breaks out on the boardwalk…here’s the view:

Come back for more of our Atlantic City adventure.

No Nonsense Meals

I admittedly don’t like to cook! At my age it is more important than ever to eat healthy.

My husband is a great cook but seems to fail miserably when it comes to adding veggies to the menu.

So here is my quick lunch…

Collards & Cornbread

Ok before you turn up your nose at it, it is simple, uses leftovers, and cost pennies to make!

I zapped frozen leftover collards in the microwave. The cornbread was made from a mix (Southeastern Mills Cornbread Mix) and baked in a bread pan at 400 degrees.

It was delicious, nutritional and easy to make.

Have a great day!

Let Freedom Ring

While our illegitimate President sends our men and women overseas for no reason, we still have our own battle to fight. While a lot of people may curl up on their sofas and lap up everything the main stream media says, there is still a spiritual and physical battle being fought.

One of my favorite songs is an old song by Martina McBride, Independence Day. While the song is focused on domestic violence there is a hidden message of our right to basic freedoms.

I laugh when I hear someone refer to this country as the land of the free. I am 70 years old and I have not seen true freedom in my lifetime!

Trust me I am not trying to be negative, just telling it like it is! We as all people have the right to freedom as guaranteed by our constitution. Our government has chosen to ignore the constitution!

What I find refreshing about the Freedom Convoy is that finally someone is speaking out. I applaud the truckers in Canada. They not only protested peacefully but with a happy heart and while their own government may have turned a deaf ear to them the rest of us cheered them on. Because of them others are finding their voice.

Sometimes the fewest words make the loudest impact, LET FREEDOM RING.

Have a blessed day. God gave you a voice…use it@

When Crafting Becomes Therapy

Believe it or not I was not born with a crochet hook in my mouth or a camera in my hand! I was fortunate that my mother taught me how to crochet and sew at a young age. Like most kids after I learned those skills, I laid them down for other things in life.

After I married, the need for those skills reappeared. I did not realize then that having those skills would get me through some very turbulent times.

Money was often tight but I began to see the value of my skills as a hobby and started to save pennies or whatever I could to pay for my supplies. Whether I was sitting at my sewing machine or crocheting a blanket it didn’t take long to realize it was a positive distraction. While my marriage became an abusive relationship, it was my time crafting that saved me emotionally.

As a single mother, life was always a challenge but I funneled any negative emotions through my hobbies. As my child grew so did my list of hobbies. I added knitting, took a quilting and photography class and more. My list has grown a lot since then.

I was fortunate enough that when I remarried it was to a man that could tolerate my obsession. He not only understands my crafting is a passion but also a coping skill. You see I have this little short fuse and used to get depressed so having developed these skills helped both.

After my Dad passed in 2007 of cancer I started making shawls, hats and other items and donating them to our local Cancer Center. Doing this helped me to recover from my grief. The money I put into this is nothing is nothing compared to what I receive.

If you are depressed or just struggling with everyday life, I strongly encourage you to find a hobby. The money you put into it is a lot less than therapy and a lot more fun!

Don’t forget to like and share!

Have an awesome day!