Friday, August 26, 2011

Back to School

     Children everywhere are heading back to school this week.

     We can all look back on photos of the first day of Kindergarten.

     Enjoy this one of my sister with her granddaughter, Ella.

     Yes, it was a good day!

Monday, August 22, 2011

A Time for Friends and Family

I have been away from my blog for the past week
to spend some very special time with family and friends -
celebrating the life of my husband's father, Dan Maxwell.

He would have been very pleased with the 
ceremony by members of the Masonic Lodge in Spencer
and full military honors by the American Legion at the cemetery. 
He had been a participant in both for many friends and veterans.

Thanks to all of you who kept our family near to your hearts 
during the past week.

I am most excited to share with you a volunteer adventure I am starting on.

I hope to become a facilitator of the VNA Phoenix Center.
This is a safe haven for children who are dealing with the death of a loved one.
Peer support age groups meet every two weeks serving the needs of toddlers, littles, middles, teens and college students in our area.

I am looking forward to the challenge and becoming involved in such a wonderful program.

Friday, August 12, 2011

Lions and Tigers and WEEDS, Oh MY!!

I have been out in the yard catching up with all of the weeds that have continued growing in the record heat. 

No, I am not in Paradise - just working the yard with my golf cart.

But, look closer - I blew out the left rear tire!!

All the time I was outside working.....
my buddy was in the house.....

....taking a a nap!!

Looks like another beautiful day!


Wednesday, August 10, 2011


The more you invest in a marriage
the more valuable it becomes.  amy grant

There we were on August 10, 1974.
Today is our 37th wedding anniversary.

A successful marriage requires falling in love many times,
always with the same person.

So take a look at this photo of my Strawn first cousins.

And now let's talk about marriage.

Front row (l to r):  John (*Susie) 30 yrs.  Kent (*Sindy) 35 yrs. 
 Ellen (*Dennis) 37 yrs  Dean (Jane) 28 yrs.  Phil (*Carmen) 46 yrs. 
 Russ (*Joyce) 47 yrs. Dennis (*Marilyn) 40 yrs.  Charles (*Audrey) 53 yrs.
 Tom (*Ilene) 40 yrs.  Galen (*Kris) 32 yrs. 

Back row (l to r):  David (Kathy) Jeff (Jodie) Stacey (Philip)  
Debby (*Dan) 40 yrs. Nola (*Tom) 35 yrs.  Jaqui (Dave) 
 Nancy (*Gary) 46 yrs.  Alice (*Garald) 43 yrs.  
 Pam (*Matt) 31 yrs.  Jerry (*Diane) 33 yrs.

Not pictured:  Sondra (*Brian) 50 yrs. Judy (*Archie) Rich (Sharon)
 Tim (*Debbie) 37 yrs.  Mike (Leliani )

* indicates the same person all these years!

So put your hands together for the 700+ years of marriage amongst the Strawn first cousins!

And remember.....a dress that zips up the back will always bring a husband and wife together!!

(I may have some errors and if so I apologize!)

Tuesday, August 9, 2011


I went off to the market Saturday with my new market bag
indeed, the one I just knitted!

I tried it out with some fresh peaches and it really did hold up!!

The pattern is on the Purl Bee.

I bought a pound of small cucumbers for pickles
as I recently read 
you can just make a few refrigerator pickles 
instead of canning all day long!

So my friend at the Smitten Kitchen 
provided the encouragement I needed 
and a simple recipe for bread and butter pickles!

And I have 2 jars of pickles, my very first attempt.
They are very tasty, too!

I found these beautiful peppers and mini eggplants.
How cool is that?
The label on the wine bottle is also lovely.

Gotta' love the collection of cherry tomatoes.
Fresh salsa anyone?

I just finished this market bag last night.
It is a free downloadable on ravelry
called Ilene.  I think it is my favorite!!

Give it a try!

Monday, August 8, 2011

Quilt Destination - New York, New York!

Two weeks ago I received these fabrics from 
Michael Miller Fabrics. 
My assignment - 
make a sample quilt!

So, this is what I made!

And here it is after Cami machine quilted it.

Love the quilting pattern - called umbrella tops!
Had to make it work with the fabrics I had
so the backing came out beautifully pieced.

 And with the stack of cut strips I had left from the quilt - 
walla......a table runner!!

Love this creative fun!!

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Chesterton Art Fair

I ventured out this hot humid August day to attend the 
53rd Chesterton Art Fair.

I have not attended for several years and it was, indeed, a real treat - 
as you will see!

A quit design in glass work!  Colors are so intense.

Two different styles of pottery caught my eye.

My kind of girl!

Words will not do this work justice.  Enjoy.



hand painted silk with screen printing
(on my manikin at home!!)

fused glass - great designs for quilts!

 couple of things - just for me!

take me away!

back in Indiana

How true is this??

What's for dinner?

Looks like penny rugs on canvas

words to live buy

Favorite find of the day for me!!
mixed media painting and collage
take time to read it!

Chris Acton Weaving - was weaving on the spot!!

And I aways seem to take a photo of another shopper - 
loved her bag - may try to make one!!

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Sample Quilts for Amy Butler Designs

Recently I have made two sample quilts for Amy Butler Designs.

Amy's fabrics are from Rowan and both of these quilts are soon to be
 FREE downloadable patterns on her website

This quilt is made from Amy's new Soul Blossoms Organic Cotton.
It is called "Window to the Soul".
As you can see, there is a fringe along the edge of the quilt.

There is a very dramatic center in this quilt.

This quilt is made from Soul Blossoms Voile 
and when finished is a very nice light weight quilt.
Please note the flange along the edges.

Amy designs all of the sample quilts and I face the challenge of making them!

It is a great experience 
and I enjoy putting my hands on all of this luscious fabric!

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Lazy Hazy Crazy Days of Summer

Yes, indeed, these are those kind of days and on a recent trip to NW Iowa 
we reminisced about our days growing up near the Iowa Great Lakes.

One of the top three tourist attractions is the Nutty Bar Stand at Arnolds Park.
It was the first stop for my mother and me!

Next stop is the salt water taffy store 
where they still make taffy the old fashioned way. 
A 60 piece bag of assorted flavors to go, please!

Last stop - The Taco House - a lakes area institution.
The hard shell tacos are as good as they were back in the 60's
when we stopped following the teen dance at the Roof Garden Ballroom.
My sister and I saw rising stars 
like the Beach Boys, Ricky Nelson and Little Peggy March.

Those were the days, my friends!

A trip to Iowa is not complete without stocking up on
Twin Bing candy bars made in Sioux City, Iowa
by the Palmer Candy company.
I used to buy a single Bing at the swimming pool for a nickel!

Those were the days, my friends!