Friday, May 27, 2011

Finished Project

I haven't felt like I had anything to blog about for the past week. How is that possible? I've been busy all day every day. I did finally get my quilt finished and am pleased with how it turned out. I have a second one ready for the binding and will show it to you in a few days.

Sunday, May 22, 2011

One-Year Anniversary

Yesterday we celebrated the One-year Anniversary of Clarissa's diabetes diagnosis. We met Quinn, Tiffany, and the kids in Kankakee for a late lunch (we call it Linner). Lunch was delayed when Tiffany found a tick embedded in Clarissa's scalp which had to be dealt with before they could get away. Isn't it always "something?!" A year ago her diagnosis seemed so overwhelming. It's become so routine that Clarissa doesn't even bat an eye. Yesterday before we started lunch she said to her mom, "Mom, aren't you going to check my blood?" In fact, Tiffany had already checked it while Clarissa was busy doing the placemat dot-to-dot. Life is good!

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Garden Experiment

When I first became interested in gardening my next door neighbor was my mentor, always encouraging, reassuring me that nothing was final and that things could be moved and changed later. As an example, she told me of a woman who changed her garden every year. If the roses were in front one year, she moved them to the back the next, then moved the hostas along the fence, the day lillies from the walkway to the back porch, etc. I've become that woman! Every year I work my little fingers to the bone and think the yard is finally just perfect, but by the end of summer I realize that the Forget Me Nots are getting too much sun, the berm is over-crowded, the Scotch Broom didn't survive the winter, and the white Clematis doesn't look good next to the white Rose of Sharon. It reminds me of the scripture from 2 Timothy about "ever learning and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth."
So here is this year's "seeking for knowledge." When I created this flower bed years ago, it was underneath the ash tree and, therefore, a shady bed. Over the years the tree has struggled and is now only HALF a tree. As a result, this bed is now a sunny bed. While it looks beautiful in the spring with the lush hostas, by mid-July, the hostas are burned and riddled with holes where the slugs have feasted on them.
I think the flower beds at the Nauvoo Temple are so beautiful and have wanted to learn to create something like them. While I have neither the budget the temple has, nor the manpower, I have made a change. At this stage, it's hard to believe that it could ever become the beautiful bed of annuals I'm hoping for, but you'll be seeing how it progresses as the summer moves along. Right now we just need some sun and some warmer temperatures in order to get things growing!

Monday, May 16, 2011

Fashion Statement

Do you think Randy can start a new fashion trend? I'm happy to report that the steroid injections in his back seem to be helping so far. He's been taking it pretty easy, but he did go to physical therapy today and got through it without any pain, so we are both hopeful!

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Julia and Bobby Flay at Work

While in Utah I got to spend a couple of days with Rob. He took two days off work and we spent one of them doing something we've enjoyed doing the last few times we've been together--COOKING! We put together a list of things he'd like to eat during the next couple of months. We make one giant shopping trip for ingredients, then return two or three more times as our plans change, we think of things we forgot to buy, or have to go to a different store to get something.

Ummm, this fruit compote is delicious!

We put everything in individual serving containers and freeze them so Rob can quickly nuke something when he gets home. We put about 30 meals in the freezer, including meatloaf with baby parsleyed potatoes, stuffed shells, sausage-ravioli soup, a fruit compote, gingersnap cookies, and homemade lime ice cream. Hope you're enjoying your meals, Rob!

Hey, you're supposed to bake those first!

Friday, May 13, 2011

Proud Sister

In the later years of my mother-in -law's life it seemed like she was always going somewhere -- a week here, a week there. As long as there was an airline ticket in her sock drawer she was happy. I'm kind of getting to be that way, and I'm blessed to have a husband who's always willing to support my Wanderlust.

A few weeks ago I found out that my sister was receiving an honorary PhD at Southern Utah University's graduation, and I felt that I should be there to support her. She has been a "second mother" to me and has blessed my life a million times. She is one amazing eighty-year-old woman and I'm so proud of her. I'm planning to hang onto her coat tail as tight as I can. It was a wonderful trip!

Monday, May 2, 2011

Summer Dresses

We did a really great humanitarian project in Relief Society last week. We made 80 little dresses for African children. Most of them were made out of pillowcases. We just cut off the top, gathered the front, and put the bias tape around the sleeves. The side seams and the bottom were already finished. It was easy, but as you might guess, there weren't many cute prints. I opted to buy cute fabric, which required a little more sewing, but will hopefully make some little girls happy.

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Walking to Find the Cure

Yesterday was the Juvenile Diabetes fundraising walk. Quinn and Tiffany drove to the Quad-Cities Friday night. Randy and I drove over early Saturday morning. A day that had been predicted as 100% chance of rain by 8:00 a.m. turned out to be pretty nice, albeit a little cool and windy. The walk raised over $200,000 for diabetes research. We want to thank all our friends and family who supported Clarissa's Crew in our efforts to help the Foundation.