Monday, September 5, 2011

Seeing the world differently


I think I need to “get out among the English” more. I am seeing the people of the world through different eyes. Typically, most of the people I know and associate with are church members, and even then, living out among the outer boundaries of the Branch doesn’t allow for much socialization with these good people, either.

When I got a flat tire on the way home from church one Sunday, out in the country,  it was the people covered in tattoos who stopped to inquire, so kindly and full of concern,  if I needed help (it was really hot out ).  It was, also, the people in the white truck, dressed in jeans and sleeveless  tank tops, who obviously weren’t coming from church, who stopped.  It was the couple, driving the crummiest car, hatchback held down with bungee cords, that had the hydraulic jack I needed (which was found underneath the woman’s wheel chair). The man proceeded to change the tire himself, and instructed us that the donut tire always goes on the back, never the front, and why.  The woman he loved was deformed, short arms, hands scarred from multiple surgeries to straighten them some, make them usable.  Her teeth were stained brown from nicotine and coffee.  But she had a bright, sincere smile.  Her eyes were kind.

All of these people live a very different lifestyle than I do.  They smoke, they drink, they are into tattoo art, but they know how to love and serve.

I live in this place where I have been jerked around so much when I needed help, that I just see the people of the world in a cynical manner.  I think I need to “get out among the English” more and allow the Lord tutor me freely about the good people who are out there.  They just haven’t been in my circle.

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Misreading Dr. Seuss

cat and jimminy 001

The Cat On the Hat


art journals 002Taking a nice nap.  Do you suppose she’s comfy?

art journals 003

Oh, let’s change position a little…

Friday, September 2, 2011

Catching Raindrops


Sure, we’ve been having a drought, but really…thirsty much?

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

August 28, 2011

It’s  that time of year, again.  Yippie!   The holiday season begins on September 1 in our household, if not a little sooner.  Sometimes people ask me why we do this.  Click here to find what I tell them.

mary and tree 017

Patrick and Katie fluff the limbs

mary and tree 019

Mary is backed into a corner

mary and tree 020

Fluffing the top

mary and tree 023

Holding the tree up because it keeps trying to fall down.

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Wrapping the lights around the pole

mary and tree 026

“You missed a spot.”

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Still trying to keep the tree from falling down

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Flamingos and Palm trees this year….

 mary and tree 030

Let the holiday season begin!!  Merry Christmas, everyone!

Because the Holiday is Just Too Lovely to Enjoy For Only 1 Month


I love Christmas Trees. I do. They cheer me, bring me joy, and lift my spirit.

Back when I was a normal person who even considered social norms, our family used to wait until the first weekend of December to put up the tree (Having children on the Autism spectrum taught me to throw social norms out the window).But, the year came when I just couldn't wait till December, so we put it up just before Thanksgiving. Then the next year the kids just started asking about it in October (I am easy to convince on this subject), so it went up just before Halloween for years after with just the lights (but waiting until Thanksgiving to put the ornaments on). And then it stayed up for months after Christmas, usually April, sometimes May.
The Holiday is just too lovely to enjoy for only one month.
Then we moved to Arkansas and, truly, normal became only a setting on a washing machine. My husband was diagnosed with an inoperable brain tumor and our world was turned upside down.
Well, the person who is not going to recover from an inoperable brain tumor gets everything they want, as far as I am concerned, so on September 1, 2004, before my husband died (May 2005), he asked for the tree to go up rather than wait till the end of October. So up it went; anything to bring him peace and contentment in his adversity. And it was Christmas day, every day, until he died.
So, now, my friends, it goes up when the time feels right.
Merry Christmas!! God bless us, every one!

charlie brown


Monday, August 29, 2011

Summer so far

We’ve been having a busy summer with gardening, working, drawing, harvesting, knitting, art projects…..

garden july 007

This is the garden in mid-July.  We’ve got lots of volunteer okra that comes up every year.  Using painted tires as planters added such fun and color to the scenery.

garden july 004

The yellow zinnias are a stand out sight this year.

birthday and monster melon 001 Katie and the monster melon

The cantaloupes were monstrous!!  I used compost this year in my garden. Funny thing, about compost.  Most of what went into my garden were volunteers that grew from the compost. 

doll 001 I made fabric strip dolls with the kids and moms (and even the Branch President) at our Pioneer Day celebration at church.

ukelele 003 Patrick ordered a Ukulele this summer and has been having nothing but fun!

Gloves & Jam 003 Mary learned to knit two gloves at once on circular needles and has been knocking them out fast.

Gloves & Jam 007

She is trying to get ahead with the autumn- colored fingerless gloves. They are her biggest seller every fall and winter.

Patcha's IPod 014

We had my birthday.  I made a yellow cake with home made orange frosting.

birthday and monster melon 004

Mary knitted a pair of socks for me.  Love them!!

birthday and monster melon 002

My mom came to see me on my birthday.  *;-.)  Bad Granny!

Gloves & Jam 001

I have been making lots of Peach Vanilla jam and lots of Strawberry Peach jam.  Yum!!

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

New Guardians of the Garden

My mother has been in my garden again. 

Patcha's IPod 017 Sparkly Rose!!!  Luckily it did not scare off the butterfly on the yellow Zinnia to the right.

Patcha's IPod 019 Are you very afraid?  It works though, because I am still harvesting Chinese Red Noodle Beans.

Patcha's IPod 022


Another Guardian of the Cantaloupes.  Don’t be fooled by the Precious Pink color. Patcha's IPod 020 

Don’t be fooled. She only looks sweet… july 003

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Fabric Strip Rag Doll

                                                               doll 001                                              Doll I made  using Batiks

    Looking for something to make to commemorate Pioneer Day in July?  We have just the thing. My 16-year old son came home from Trek with an adorable fabric strip rag doll that he had made in a workshop one day.  He was so proud.  (Thanks to Sarah H. for teaching him)

chrismas doll 001

                Patrick’s Christmas-y doll he made on Trek


  • For the body: 20 strips of fabric, 1 -1/2 inch wide, in as many colors as you wish, cutting the full 44-inch width of fabric.  (You may trim the length at the end as you desire. I just left mine long)
  • For the arms: 10 strips of fabric, coordinating with the dress, 1 1/2 inches wide, 16 inches long.  I just took 5 strips, folded them over to make 10 and cut.
  • For the head:  4 extra strips of fabric (color doesn’t matter, as they will not show)
  • narrow scraps to tie at head, neck, waist and cuffs.

I have selected Batik prints for my doll.

To begin, stack your fabric strips evenly.rag doll 001

Lay them on a flat surface (yes, my flat surface really is a tie-dyed damask table cloth).rag doll 002

Find the middle and tie with a narrow strip of matching fabric.rag doll 003


Roll 4 strips of scrap fabrics into a ball, forming the head  (I neglected to measure the size. Sorry.  It fits in the palm of your hand).rag doll 006

Tuck the ball under the tied middle of your stack of fabrics.

rag doll 008

Begin closing fabrics around the ball to cover.   rag doll 009  rag doll 010 rag doll 011

When you are satisfied with the coverage and the look, form a neck with a narrow strip of fabric and tie off.rag doll 013

Choose 10 fabric strips , 1 1/2 inches wide, for the arms. (I selected 5 and folded them over to make 10.)   Cut so their full length is 16 inches long.rag doll 016

Stack them evenly in an order that suits you, if order is what you want.rag doll 017 

Lay your doll “face up.”  Lift half the fabric strips of the doll and lay your arm stack inside, below the neck.rag doll 018

If you wish, as this step is optional, tie the arm strips in place using a strip of fabric from the doll body in front of the arms and a strip from the fabrics behind the arms (note the two tightened green strips).rag doll 019

Replace the “doll front”  fabric strips over the arm strips. Tie off each “sleeve” with a narrow strip of fabric.rag doll 023

Tie a waist with another narrow strip of fabric.rag doll 026

Tug at sleeves to “poof” them, if desired. rag doll 028

And we are done!!doll 001

Have Fun!!   Wouldn’t these be lovely made up in seasonal colors?