Archive for November, 2007

Quick quick…change the subject

Isn’t this hooded towel great? I already told you they are my favorite thing! And with my embroidery machine I can add names or sayings to them. So fun!!!! Anyway this is for the craft fairs that are the next two weekends. Of course, it is raining as we speak…so this weekend might not have the best foot traffic. I know the picture isn’t the best….but I’m in a hurry! Now hopefully anyone that wonders over from Linda‘s blog won’t think I’m a crazy ranting lady!

What else have I been working on? Well I have craft fairs the next two weekends, so I’ve been trying to balance orders and make a few extra things to take and sell. It’s been hectic. My friend that I made the disaster quilt for…well she so boldly trusted me to do yet another project for her…and this one is really cute! This tree skirt will be much better than the bed sheet she was using before! Their names are under the snowmen and then one panel has their home and the last one has the family name. Very fun!

Okay…so no more ranting about insurance. See? I am totally normal and someone you can visit with out fear. 🙂


Insurance is killing us?

Be forewarned….this is a completely personal rant. So you may want to skip today’s post.

I’ve come to the conclusion that insurance is killing us…financially speaking. I have always been told that we have to carry insurance…”just in case.” And believe me, I understand that your whole world can turn upside down in a heartbeat. I get the “just in case.” Trust me, I really do. We’ve had a one of those occurrences in our house and we just finished paying off that “just in case.” But I also get this. We pay almost 10 grand/year on insurance. (That doesn’t even include car insurance…which is just another “drop in the bucket.”) I’m told that our insurance is “very reasonable.” (And just FYI…that figure does not include deductibles or copays…all of that is on top of this great privilege of carrying insurance.)

Let’s see where else that money can take us. If your family is anything like mine, I’m sure we could all use the extra 10K just to get by. But let’s just pretend that we didn’t need that 10,000 to buy food and provide shelter and clothing. Forget about any luxuries. Let’s say that we just had that insurance payment go directly to our investor so that at the age of 65 (and heaven forbid we might want to retire a little earlier) we can actually afford to retire. I’m sure that you are aware that very few people from my generation are provided a pension plan so we have to save every penny we’re going to need to survive in those golden days of retirement. And yes, we often have options like 401 K’s, but even if you’re lucky enough to have an employer that contributes something NONE of them are contributing everything. And if putting 3 to 5% of your income into one of these plans is going to provide everything that you need…well then let me know your plan options so that I can change ours. And let’s not even get started on social security. Oh boy…let’s not even get started.

So back to my idea. Invest that 10 grand. Now, using my handy dandy little investment calculator. If we invested that 10,000 each year until we were ready to retire at the grand age of 65, we reinvested the interest that we earned and we had a low to average growth rate…we could have well over 1 MILLION dollars towards our retirement.

But “just in case” I’ll give that extra million to the insurance companies.

I think I’ll grow throw up now.

Too Personal

Too personal? No way! Personalized gifts are always the best.

These little bags for kids have been a huge hit!

Perfect for helping in the kitchen or when it’s time for painting, arts and crafts.
(And yes, I make them for boys too!)


And regarding the Thanksgiving drawing… I am going to send you all a little something! Congratulations and thanks for reading my blog! (bet you wish you had commented now, eh?!?!?)

Yes, I made these cute little towels. Aren’t they just fantastic? I love my embroidery machine. You could put them in your bathroom or kitchen. I’ll send you something along these lines…although these are already spoken for…but you get the general idea. So be watching for little package from me…hopefully before Christmas. (Don’t act shocked! Those of you who left comments know me well enough to know I am always running behind.)

Check out my flickr set of embroidery designs. Just like my fabric I need to work on getting them all online for you to view. It’s on the list, it’s on the list. (Does anyone else feel like the list just keeps growing no matter how much work you do!)

Wishing you a


Here are a few fun Thanksgiving questions for you. Hope you have a great day.

1. What was the name of the ship the pilgrims came over on?

2. Which President established Thanksgiving as a holiday celebrated on the 4th Thursday of November?

3. What does cornucopia mean?

4. What department store held the first Thanksgiving Day Parade?

5. Do other countries celebrate Thanksgiving?


1. What was the name of the ship the pilgrims came over on?

The Mayflower. Christopher Jones was the captain. There were 102 pilgrims that came over on the Mayflower and about 50% survived to celebrate the first Thanksgiving. Of the 50 survivors only 5 were women.

2. Which President established Thanksgiving as a holiday celebrated on the 4th Thursday of November?

Franklin D. Roosevelt ensured it was celebrated on the 4th Thursday by signing a bill from Congress. He also tried moving it up one week to stimulate the economy with Christmas shopping, but that did not take! Abraham Lincoln made Thanksgiving a national holiday, before that the governor of each state would set the date for Thanksgiving for their state.

3. What does cornucopia mean?

Horn of Plenty.

4. What department store held the first Thanksgiving Day Parade?

Gimbels’ Department Store in Philadelphia in 1920. The first Macy’s Day Parade was in 1924.

5. Do other countries celebrate Thanksgiving?

Yes, Canada also celebrates Thanksgiving, although it is on the second Monday of October.

Here is the website where I got my info. I didn’t verify any of it…but it all sounds about right 🙂

The Best Apple Pie

Get ready! Here is the best Apple Pie recipe you will have ever tasted! (and just in time for Thanksgiving…how about that!) I’ve had a few good 2 crust pies, but the crumb topping is the best 🙂

1 Pastry (Just for the convenience I recommend buying Pillsbury’s roll out pie crusts)
6 c. THINLY sliced, peeled apples (Use Granny Smith, they’re best for baking. Use a tool to help you slice them extra thin!)
1 Tbsp. Lemon Juice
3/4 c. Sugar (You can subsitute 3/4 c. Splenda instead – you won’t even notice the difference but it’ll save you a few calories!)
2 Tbsp. Flour
1/2 tsp. Cinnamon
1/8 tsp. Nutmeg

1/2 c. Flour
1/2 c. Brown Sugar
3 Tbsp. butter (works best when it is chilled. Use margarine if you like but not a lower fat substitute.)

1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. (I recommend preheating a cookie sheet with the oven. Then when it’s time, place your pie on top of this. That way if any of the carmely gooey goodness ends up boiling over you don’t have a mess in your oven.) Line 9 inch pie plate with pastry, cutting off any extra crust that hangs over the plate.
2. Sprinkle apples with lemon juice.
3. Combine Sugar, Flour, Cinnamon and Nutmeg in a large bowl. Add apple slices and gently toss to coat. Pour on top of pie crust. (This will be heaping but will bake down quite a bit.)
4. Combine Flour and Brown Sugar for topping. Cut in Butter until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Top pie with crumb mixture.
5. To prevent over browning, loosely cover the edges of the crust with foil. (Or buy a handy crust cover thingy…yep that’s the technical name I think!) Bake for 25 minutes and remove the foil. Bake 20-30 minutes longer or until top is golden brown.


This August at the Iowa State Fair, my favorite part was seeing all the quilts on display. I am always in awe. I just love them. The possibilities are really endless and the creativity is out of this world. Quilts are art. I have books and magazines all about quilting. They are so nice to look through. I have to officially admit (and I admit this with great difficulty), I am not a quilter. Actually, I have successfully completed a few baby quilts. They are at the threshold of fun. I enjoy designing them, picking out the fabrics and piecing them together. Since they are baby quilts, the quilting is manageable and the binding is bearable. Beyond this level….count me out!

I don’t want any part of the precision cutting or all the ironing of seams. I don’t want to mess with all the fancy stitches and yards of binding (which I always feel compelled to make myself so that it’ll match…here is a tip for you…BUY BINDING!) Nope…don’t look for full sized quilts from me any time soon.

My Grandmother is a quilter. She uses scrap fabric like no one else I know. (I’ve thought about sending her bagfuls of my scrap materials, but thought my aunts might not like me so much if I did that!) She makes amazing quilts. I wonder if she knows the number of quilts that she has made in her life. She’s made them for her children and all the grandchildren have received quilts in their childhood, for weddings, for great-grandchildren. I am surprised she has not gone insane!

I suppose that you are wondering what has brought this all on? Well, I agreed to make a quilt for someone. It took seemingly forever to find the fabrics. Once they were all in place, I figured it would take a me a couple nights of hard work. No big deal. It was, afterall, a “simple” quilt. I cut out my templates, had all my measurements in place and got to work. About half way through it, I honestly felt like throwing the whole thing into the trash. Now, of course, I could not do this. You might think I wouldn’t want to waste the fabric or the time I had put into it, but the only reason it didn’t end up in the trash was because it was for someone else. I trudged forwarded…piecing and piecing, then tacking layers together, working on the edging and finally…FINALLY…finishing the quilt. It is the worst thing I have ever made. 😦 It made me want to cry. Possibly I should have listened to myself when I had the initial trash thought.

If you look at quilting in the same light as horse back riding, you could say I was bucked off the horse. Some people say “You must get back on. Don’t let one bad experience scare you off.” Well, this terrified me and I won’t be climbing back on the quilting horse anytime soon!

Now blankets…I can do blankets!

PS. Check out the quilting page on my website for some pictures of a few quilts I have managed to complete without wanting to trash!

University of Arizona

We went to a GREAT football game last night! University of Arizona Wildcats vs. Oregon Ducks (#2)
U of A WON!!!!!

It was exciting to be there. Oregon’s star quarterback got injured in the first quarter, which definitely helped Arizona.

Then right at the beginning of the second quarter Arizona scored two touchdowns. The crowd was going crazy!

At the end of the game all the students rushed the field. Actually they didn’t even wait until the end of the game. They started going onto the sidelines when there were still 3:20 left on the clock. The announcer kept saying “Please do not go onto the playing field. It could result in a penalty against your team or personal arrest.” I heard him say it at least a hundred times. No one, to my knowledge, got arrested. I thought it had to be distracting to the players. Oh well. They were just excited!

We had fun…but we didn’t rush the field 🙂 I really wanted to make a U of A bag to take to the game…but instead worked on some orders. Is the responsible or what? Maybe I’ll get one made in time for the basketball game.

Hi! I love fabric, I adore my family and I seem to think my life is pretty dang fun! So welcome to my blog. Enjoy your stay and visit often!

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November 2007
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