Friday, June 27, 2008

Kitty cat overload

When my Am vets bag arrived in the mail today I decided to weed out my closet a little more.
I always have a stack of clothes ready to give them. While going through my stuff I came across all of this. I have so much stuff with cats on it LOL! For awhile it was pretty scary, I couldn't even leave the house without wearing something that had a cat on it!
Three winter cat sweaters.

Two pink spring cat sweaters!

Red, blue and black cat shoes. All of the above items only come out of the closet when I do a trade show. You can hear my kids BIG sigh relief!

My favorite vintage apron, Christmas kittens with candy canes of course!

A cat dish with cat jewelry.

And if you need a blast from the past you can dab on a little bit of this.

My daughter sent me this cute Laurel Burch tote for Mothers Day last year.

A tote full of stuffed kittens, and these are only a few of the gang. And this is only the tip of the iceberg ladies! You have to wonder how this ever happened, and I know very well, Cleo is to blame. My middle child Erin brought Cleo home, she was from a litter of farm cats that was going to be put to sleep. Geeze, I didn't really want a cat at that time, we were in a nice pet free zone. Throughout the years we had many pets which all ended up being my pets, you know how that goes! Well gee whiz, Cleo was so darn funny right from the beginning. I cant tell you how many hours we spent laughing just watching her kitten silliness. And then she became my best buddy, sewing and sewing related items really sparked her curiosity and she loved hanging out with me. The 2 of us would be up sewing all night while everyone else was fast asleep. I fell for Cleo hard like no other pet we ever had. When I started my pattern company we had a list of typical names, and then Cleo and Me popped into my head and I knew that had to be it. She was the inspiration for my 1st book with Leisure Arts "Calendar Cats", boy was that fun to do.
Anyways 8 years later, I have lots of cat stuff. Not a holiday or birthday goes by when someone doesn't send me a cat themed item and now I am on kitty cat overload.
And wow, here it is Friday again. I need to shake a leg and get ready for my hot date tonight. Jerry and I are going to a KC Royals game. I cant wait. I love baseball!

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

A Susie home-maker type day

Summer has finally arrived in KC, a hot and very sticky day today. I almost feel like I'm back in Florida. The weather prompted me to crank up the air and get busy. I washed and dried wool felt all morning. Then cut out all my pieces for a new penny rug pattern. Cleo and I then proceeded to do battle over whether I was actually going to get any stitching done on it.
You can see how determined she is here to stay put. Not even a camera flash would scare her off today, which it usually does, she really is camera shy. Speaking of my little girl, while I was gone last week I had a spammer send me an email that caught my eye. And let me tell you, between having a website and blog I get a TON of spam, but most of it is easily trashed before even getting to me. Anonymous person said- "Cleo Looks Stoopid". And that was it, misspelling and all, just 3 hateful little words. Silly as it was, I was shocked for a minute, and then I had a good laugh over the spelling.

Moving along on my stitching minus you know who.
So many projects on my plate for this summer, and then here is this beautiful stack of Moda "Winter" fabric staring at me. I have not quite decided where I am heading with this fabric yet but its here ready and waiting!

I made a nice dinner to celebrate the 3 of us being home together tonight. It was long over due, well not the dinner part LOL, the 3 of us being here together for dinner I meant!
Tonight I watched Wife Swap while doing a little more stitching, that show cracks me up sometimes! Which reminds me, in 2 weeks Jerry and I will celebrate our 37th anniversary. And I guess that didn't sound right either, I think I am getting overly tired now.

Last but not least I made cinnamon muffins for the boys breakfast tomorrow. I had great intentions, but I made a little goof on these. I added the crumb topping to the batter instead of the cinnamon filling. Jon just walked through the kitchen saying "it sure smells good in here" LOL! They look okay, smell great, he loves to eat, they'll never know!
Well thanks for stopping by, tomorrows another day, its off to beddie bye for me.

Friday, June 20, 2008

Theres No Place Like Home!

It was a really LONG day of travel today and we are finally home and it feels good! Isn't it funny how you cant wait to get away from it all, then 6 days later you re missing what you couldn't wait to get away from to begin with! Flying just isn't what it used to be any more either, it used to be fun. You would think a 2-1/2 hour flight would get you to your destination in a flash. Well you gotta get up way early to get ready to get to the airport (in our case MCI is 45 minutes away) and then allow at LEAST 1 hour to park your car and take the shuttle from the lot to the airport and get through the check in lines. We board, one diet coke, a pack of peanuts and a little snooze later were there! Well, kind 0f! After arriving in Tampa its off to get the rental car and then a 1-1/2 drive to Ocala. Sheesh, we figured it took us 9 hours each way from start to finish, and that was with no delays thank goodness!
We did however have lots of fun and the week went very fast.
Jerrys Dad lives in a large retirement community, there is plenty to keep a person busy which is why he has enjoyed living there the past 22 years. Hubby and brother in law Steve were like 2 kids in a candy store. Golf was high on their list and they did plenty of that, its so cheap they said, who can resist! (we were off season, and it was REALLY hot) hence some pretty reasonable rates for 2 crazy out of town boys. Besides golf we bowled, played Bingo and shuffleboard, boccie and horseshoes for the boys and we sunned at the pool in between daily thunderstorms. At night we played cards or games. We went to the movies, the boys saw Indiana Jones and my sister in law Julie and I saw Sex In The City.
You name it, we did it. Constant motion from morning until bedtime. Phew, makes a persons head spin!

No trip is complete without a stop at the citrus center!

Actually it was this come see the "13 foot alligator" advertisement that beckoned us to stop here, had to see it! (plastic :)

Loved these really cute coconut heads.

And lots of souvenirs, who wouldn't want this guy for your front porch.

Okay, this was a nice little side trip we took one afternoon. Stumpknockers is a restaurant on the Withlacoochee River. From there you can take a pontoon boat ride down the river.

Which we did. The boat ride was really nice and Captain Jack is an excellent river guide. A relaxing tour of the river, its history and wildlife, we all enjoyed it.

Never one to leave the local fauna alone, here I am with my alligator friend. (doesn't look like he really likes me does it). Oh gosh, look out Barbie!

This pic is a bit blurry but I had to take it during the river ride. These children at a swimming hole were enjoying the rope swing, diving and having such a great time. Looks like a lot of fun. I however would be a nervous wreck worrying about the snakes and alligators. Our guide swears snakes and alligators are not a problem unless you get in their territory. Ok. Gee, Mr 10 foot snake, sorry I accidentally drifted too far over near you LOL.
All in all, it was great to get away and good to see Jerrys Dad enjoying great health at 86.
And now I have work to do. Lots of catch up. One cant live off of Salt Water Taffy alone, looks like a trip to the grocery store 1st. Then off to tackle some laundry.
Have a great weekend!

Friday, June 13, 2008

Florida here we come!

I have been running around like a chicken with my head cut off today, not very prepared for this trip tomorrow! I guess I work best under pressure anyway and we will be ready as usual.
Poor Cleo, here she sits on my nearly packed duffel bag as always. She gets nervous when the suitcases come out. She knows she wont be getting as many treats as normal while I am gone.
Have no fear, she certainly won't starve. Jon will spoil her in my place for sure.
Last night was another noisy night of storms. Sirens going off and all. It boomed and thundered until 3am. Sure hope the sun will be shining lots in Florida!
Poor Cleo looks so sad :( Should have some fun pics and stories when I get back.
Adios until then and have a great week!

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Vacation coming up fast

Wow, its Tuesday already and on Saturday Jerry and I leave for Florida. We are making our yearly trip to visit Jerrys Dad in Ocala. Jerrys sister and her husband are flying in at the same time also, from Pittsburgh. We usually try to co-ordinate our flights so we can share a rental car to get from the Tampa Airport to Ocala and back together, about and hour and 1/2 drive.
I am looking forward to a change of scenery. Plus it is wonderful all 5 of us get to spend a little time together in one spot which rarely happens these days since we are all so scattered across the country.

I do have a problem with downtime though, I am pretty antsy, so I will be taking a project to work on. And I have been stitching this cute red work piece for 5 years on road trips!
Maybe this trip I will get it done, as you can see I'm nearly there! I am also cutting out pieces for a new penny rug that maybe I'll take also.

Bringing 2 books with me also. I am reading them both at once LOL. One is the downstairs book and one is the upstairs book. Both are very different and excellent reads.

Last but not least I'll have to leave you with a pic of my little helper. Boy oh boy does Cleo love to knit. I'm gonna miss her but feel good knowing Jon will be here to spoil her til I get back.
Have a super week!

Monday, June 9, 2008

Working up an appetite!

Just another Monday. It stormed like crazy last night, seems to be the weather pattern here lately. I spent the morning working on putting my new sweatshirt pattern on paper. Took a break and went back to the guestroom closet for a little more weeding out and let me tell you, this is going to be a long project ladies! My stomach started growling and I started dreaming about an Andersons Beef On Weck. Oh I could cry looking at this picture, I want one SOOOO BAD! But you see, Andersons is in Buffalo New York. Jerry is from Buffalo, we lived there for 13 years when we were 1st married. Buffalo may take a lot of jabs for its snowfall amounts, but I will tell you, Buffalonians know how to eat and eat well! I don't think I have ever craved food from another city we lived in as much as I still crave food from Buffalo 23 years later! Besides this fabulous beef sandwich on a specialty roll, I really want a Bocce pizza, a John and Marys sub, Mighty Tacos, a Teds charcoal broiled hot dog, Duffs chicken wings, a fish fry (fresh haddock from the Niagara River) and some SPONGE CANDY!!!!! Why am I torturing myself, tears are running down my face.

Here is a picture of an Andersons Beef on Weck, sob, sob. Ok, I needed to go to the grocery store today anyways, they say you should never go on an empty stomach. And, you should also NEVER run in to your 6'4 son in the grocery store either. Boy was he just BEAMING to see me there! He was just picking up a few non grocery items until I came along. I'll tell you, shopping with Jon is like that old TV show, racing through the store and seeing how much you can put in your basket in a short period of time LOL, really!

More guest closet goodies. I had a 60s theme going on in the guestroom of my last house in Oklahoma. I loved the 60s! The 45 on the old record player is "For Your Love" by the Yardbirds. Here's the old pink guest phone which still works. The round case behind the phone holds a bouffant hairdryer for the guests bathroom, new and unused. What were you thinking Barbara! I guess I am going to box this stuff up, maybe someday it can go on EBay, but not the pink phone.

And would you look at this sweet vintage dress. This was hung on the back of the door in the old guest room. Some pretty teen probably has a picture of herself in this somewhere. Prom or date night, the picture doesn't show how lovely it really is, and tiny!
One of my overnight guests came downstairs one morning laughing. She said you know Barbie, I tried that dress on and was going to come down and show you, but I couldn't zip it up. This coming from a quite tiny person herself, she seemed surprised it didn't fit and we just laughed and laughed.

Jerry has the cover done for my sweatshirt pattern. Like I said I am furiously writing directions, we are however leaving this weekend on vacation and I just may not get this done before I go.
An by the way, don't you just love my new Blog Header! The picture is of part of a border of "Churning Kitties" a really cute pattern of mine. I am so proud of Jerry, he worked his heart out for me on Saturday and this was one of the projects he did.
Speaking of Jerry, he'll soon be home, dinner time is fast approaching and I better rustle up some grub.
Thanks for stopping by, have a happy week!

Friday, June 6, 2008

In The Groove!

Boy oh boy, another weekend is upon us! I pretty much have been in the groove, the sewing groove up in my "studio". I have 3 new projects completed, 2 are waiting for me to write up the instructions. This cute little Halloween table mat is ready for Jerry to put on the website for me this weekend. Jerry is my webmaster, he does all the updates on my website which is a lot of work. He also takes my project photos and puts them in the format for the pattern covers. He does a great job and all for free other than some minor grumbling! Especially during the summer when he just wants to golf, golf and golf! And just because I said something really nice about you Jerry, I hope your head does not get too big to fit through the door tomorrow, you have web work to do, remember?

Heres "Midnight Rider"- table mat or small wall hanging. Fast and fun fusible applique!
We have had really strong storms here in Kansas off and on all week. I was up late quilting this 2 nights ago when we had some really severe stuff going on. Lots of wind, lightening and thunder, the type that makes you jump and your heart skip a beat every few minutes. I'm lucky I didn't sew my hand to this, now THAT would have probably made a really great Halloween pattern, probably a best seller!

I also have been spending some time in the guest room. We are going to give it a re-do this summer, mostly change the paint color. I am cleaning out the closet in there, boy oh boy is there a lot of stuff. Stuff I haven't seen in years in there, stacked floor to ceiling. I wanted to show you this antique quilt I bought years ago from Buckboard Quilts And Antiques in Oklahoma. A really sweet sunbonnet sue and in amazing condition, beautifully hand quilted. I cant remember if it was 30s or 40s.

I fell in love with the extra embroidery touches someone added, the couching outlines around the applique shapes and flowers stitched on the bonnets. It was just too sweet to resist. I was going to give it to the first daughter who had a little girl for her room. And that leads to these other finds...........

When both daughters were pregnant at the same time, expecting 3 babies, I started to shop!
In a box lined with pink tissue- a DARLING crochet sweater set with kitty bonnet and booties.

A close up of that adorable bonnet!

Pink Jammies with little pink kittens!

Several darling spring outfits with bunnies and flowers. I even knitted while I waited; a sweet pink Christmas stocking, and I am embarrassed to say there is even more! LOL.
Looks like I got side tracked here, obviously I had pink on the brain, surely 1 out of 3 would be a girl, 4 sure! And those little girl clothes are just so hard to resist! And the reason they are still in my closet is I got 3 beautiful boys! I now have 4 boys, three of them 2 years old! 4 precocious funny little guys who love trucks, cars, plugs, drills, cell phones and TV remote controllers!
So I have decided to give away all the sweet little clothes, EXCEPT the sweet kitty crochet set.
I am saving that for your turn JON, maybe after you finish college, and lets not stretch that out forever, its already been 4 years and you're still going strong. And speaking of cutie pie Jon, he just walked in the door from work, threw a load of laundry in the washer and asked if I was going to be up much longer. Do you think he wants to spend some time with me? It is now 11:06 PM.
Why I said? Because, he says before leaving, again, I need you to put my clothes in the dryer! LOL, LOL. Tomorrow morning he is leaving for a big music festival in Lawrence KS. Gotta love em.
Have a wonderful weekend!

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Pay It Forward

Hi peoples. I have decided to participate in an exchange called Pay It Forward.
I first heard about this program while visiting Karens blog : and thought this sounded fun.
If I knew how to link I would, I'm still learning blogeese! I mean I did down load the Simon video yesterday and let me tell you that took a lot of guts and button pushing and then keeping my fingers crossed! Anyways, stop by and visit Karens wonderful blog for some fun and wonderful recipes!
The rules are:
And before we get started on that you should know you must have a blog to participate in this exchange.Based on the concept of the movie Pay It Forward, where acts or deeds of kindness are done with out expecting something in return; just passing it on with hope that the recipients of the acts of kindness will likewise do the same.
I will make and send a handmade gift to the 1st 3 people who leave a comment to this post on my blog requesting to join the Pay It Forward Exchange.
What YOU have to do in return is Pay it Forward by making the same promise on your blog.
Your gift will be mailed with in the next 6 months and this is a promise!
I am not sure what I will be making yet. This will be fun for sure. We're not talking big quilts here now LOL! So many possibilities, small penny rugs, little purses, pin cushions, punch needle, a pillow or maybe a small embroidered piece. A little gift of kindness, something we can all use from time to time.
The sky is rumbling away out here, severe storms are rolling in and we are under a Tornado watch. Its that time of year. So I am thinking I had better turn the computer off for awhile.
And hop back up to the "studio". Gonna try to finish quilting a fun little Halloween table mat, the pattern should be on my web site next week.