being a grandma…

I really never thought of what comes with the reality of being a grandma. As I reflect on the grandmas in my own life, they were both very different as were my mom and my mother in-law. Both my grandmas were stay at home moms, one with a smallish family, and the other one a rather large family, they both lived very nearby. They were part of my growing up. My children’s grandmas were also nearby. My mom was a farm wife, just like me and my mother in-law, a school teacher. Two very different women but equally devoted and God-loving grandmas. I am finding out that I am very much like my mom and her mom at being a grandma. That is a reality that I am quick to embrace, in fact it’s the most natural path for me to take.

grandma…

For me right now, it is being available to care for my grandson while his mom is working. It is pretty convenient for us all, his dad and grandpa get to see him throughout the day and as he gets older he will be able to venture out with his dad. I’m not going to say that it is the most effortless task because I just don’t seem to be able to get everything done like I used to when my kids were little. I have to adjust my schedule and priorities, and you know it’s really not a bad thing to do. Investing my time into the lives of our grandchild and our nieces children has given me so many wonderful experiences and memories and I am just getting started.  I have so many more adventures to make with them.  As I dream, I can picture trips to the cabin, boating and camping, oh so much fun!

As I look out my windows, through the fingerprints, and slobber marks, I laugh and think, I should really wash those windows before company comes. I still like a clean and clutter free home, but it has been one of those priorities that goes further down the list of things to do. Instead I have a toy basket, a high chair for our bar and those possessions I treasure are moved to higher places. My car has car-seats varying from toddler to a booster, my patio has a tricycle and a wagon and I need to have on hand lots of bubbles and sidewalk chalk. Cookies are made and helping me make them is always fun.  They just have to see the wheat being ground into flour, and then patiently wait for them to get out of the oven. Milk and cookies, always a good thing!

mom…

Mothers Day is coming up and I want to express how much I appreciate how you have shown me what it is to be a grandma. Your selfless and loving actions are what I will strive for as I am journeying down this road.

a grandma…one who desires to care and love the little ones and enjoy life through the eyes of babes.

 

Happy Mother’s Day, Mom!

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little pretty bags

I found a cool little Lollipop Bags pattern in a quilt shop last fall and so far have made probably a dozen of them and given most of them away as gifts.  I simplified it by not adding the handle or rosette. I love the contrasting triangle, it just gives it that little extra a little bag needs.

They make perfect little gifts and it takes only a couple fat quarters of material and a piece of fusible batting and a zipper.   I made one at first and then decided to make at least three at a time.  It goes so much faster when I use, as I like to call it, the assembly line method.

 

 

I wanted to make a bag for myself that I could put my essential oils in without the glass bottles hitting each other.  So I did some thinking and measuring and added elastic that would hold the bottles secure.  It works pretty well, although I will adjust the elastic higher for the next bag I make.

I was using one of the bags for my knitting. It is a perfect size for scissors, darning needles and anything small.  My needles however, needed a longer bag to keep them secure. So I used the same technique as the other bags without the contrasting fabric and made it long enough for my longest wood needle. I just love it, now my needles are safe and not lost on the bottom of my big knitting bag.

Now to get busy and make something with my needles other than dish cloths!

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some pics from the ocean get away…..

 

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its spring and the wheat is growing…

The days have been getting warmer and longer.  The fields are turning green and the wheat is taking in the sunshine and rain.  Mark has a great way of expressing it, God is irrigating the wheat for us again!  Praise God, because we need the rain and the sunshine.  The farm work gets kicked into high gear in the spring, as the weeds also start to shoot up.  Farming is so much like life. Just when I’m feeling good about how life is going, something will  come up and make me doubt and complain.  Just like all those weeds in my wheat field, I need to get rid of the doubt and stop the complaining.

Mark has been putting in long hours on the sprayer getting rid of those weeds and giving the wheat a boost with some fertilizer. We should see the results soon with the wheat shooting up and the weeds getting knocked out.  Just like the wheat, I need help getting back on track, for me that means spending more time with Jesus.

 

Here are some shots I took of Mark spraying and the growing wheat fields.

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I took this one this morning!  It was a beautiful day today.

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Quilting is still going on….

I managed to work on a wall quilt/table topper, right now it is on the wall.  It has been in the works for a while, but I wanted it done before Easter and it was.  I used fabric I had in my stash.  I just love it when I don’t have to run to town to finish a project. It pays to buy fabric even when I don’t know at the time what it is going to be for. Gotta have a good stash to be a quilter!

 

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Carson’s Quilt…

is almost ready to be quilted.  I just need to move my frame back in the house and get started.  It will have to wait for a little while though, I am going on a girls trip only with my mom, aunt, sister and cousin to the Oregon coast for a few days.  I’m sure I will have some pictures to share when I get back.  The wheat will be even taller and greener!

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progressing slowly….

I thought I had better share with you my slow progress with Carson’s quilt.  I have been working on some blocks that will be the main focus. It has been fun and challenging.

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Last fall I had visited family in Nebraska and my aunt showed me a quilt that had barns on it.  I asked her where she got the patterns for the barns and it was in an Eleanor Burns quilt book on American Barns.  It took me awhile to find a book, but finally found one on her website,  I should have looked there first!

I reworked a barn so it would look similar to our own barn and made the silo look more like a grain bin.

 

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The ruler on the book was a must for the next block. I wanted a tractor pattern and found one on Craftsy.  It was a paper pieced pattern that looked difficult, but it was the only one I liked so it just had to be done.  The only experience I have with paper piecing has been at a one hour class many years ago.  So the next best teacher is the internet and I found a YouTube video.  The Add-A-Quarter ruler was the main tool she suggested and I have to say it was worth the money.  I looked locally at a couple of fabric stores but to no avail, so Amazon is where I picked one up.

This is my work in progress.

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This week is Holy Week and Easter is coming. I have lots to do in preparing for Resurrection Sunday. We will have family here on the farm and Church to celebrate our Risen Lord, and of course a feast to prepare and eat together!

It is still pretty cold here, but I managed to take a few pictures of some spring flowers that are making their appearance in my flower beds.

 

He is Risen!

 

 

 

 

 

 

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picking fabric

It will soon be my grandson’s first birthday and I have a quilt to make!  I had some ideas running around in my head and finally figured out what to do. It obviously had to have ‘farm stuff’ in it, so I looked on Pinterest and in my quilt books and came up with a plan and pattern on my Electric Quilt.  I love this software.  It allows me to be creative and then see the project before I even start.  It also helps me when buying fabric, I usually buy way too much just to make sure I have enough.

I recently made a trip to the Portland area and made a stop at Fabric Depot.  This store can be overwhelming and very costly.  It is huge and has fabric of all types,  on this day I was focused on one quilt and I had success.

 

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I just love these tractors.  The fabric line is Apple Hill Farm  from RJR Fabrics.  Don’t you just love the fences in green and red.  I added  other fabrics that blended well and I think I did pretty good at picking fabric on this trip to Portland.   So this is it, the fabric for my grandson’s quilt!  Now I need to get started.

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a quilt for Cecily

Cece, is what we call her, is my nieces daughter and she is two.  She and her sister get to come up and visit us here on the farm one day a week while her parents work.   I love my days with them and often we go on excursions around the farm and sometimes we go for ranger rides.

 

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I made a quilt for her trying to get it done by her first birthday, but ended up getting it to her a few months late.  Picking the material is always fun and with Cece, I knew it had to be bright and cheery.  The pattern was ‘Sweet Pea’ from The Pattern Basket. It was perfect for her as she is a little sweet pea girl.

 

 

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It is machine pieced and quilted. I’m still not a pro at machine quilting, but I keep trying and really that is all that matters. I machine embroidered the tag on the back and it makes it special and fun

 

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Here is miss Cece and her quilt.

 

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Leap Year

We all like the idea of having more time given to us and today is actually 24 hours of just that.  Leap Year, a day that is given to us every 4 years.  I really have never thought of Leap Year that way, I do have a friend who’s birthday is Feb. 29 and I always think of how special that day is every 4 years.  But other than that, I do what most everyone does, the normal everyday things that are scheduled on that day.  Except for this Feb 29, I happen to be in Long Beach, Washington, on a vacation with my daughter Hannah!  How cool is that?!  I am getting to actually fill leap day with time at the beach.

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This leap day is reflective for me in a couple of ways. The fact that I am actually blogging is a good starting place.  When life gets crazy, blogging gets put way down on the list. Since it has been a year since I last blogged, I guess you can figure out that I have had plenty of those crazy days. To be honest, it has been one of the most difficult years and also one of the most amazing.  God Is Good All The Time!

Last year I blogged about how “change is a good thing.” At that time I had no idea how much I was to be tested of how much I truly believed that. Isn’t that the way life is sometimes?  God will use everything in our lives to show us how we need Him all the time, everyday, every minute.  The craziness all started when Mark’s mom suffered a stroke.  While she was in the hospital recovering, his Dad, after returning home, died while sleeping from smoke inhalation from a fire that had started in their garage.  This event has led me on a journey of change that I wasn’t prepared for.

Caring for family has always been a top priority and caring for Mark’s mom was going to be a change that we would have to adjust to. I have always been one who believed that I can take on any situation that comes my way no matter what it is.  Unfortunately, that did not work in this situation – we were unable to give Mark’s mom the care she needed.  Praise God for a loving family that finds solutions together.  We have embraced change once again and mom is being cared for in a small assisted living home, where she is doing well and receiving the care she needs from wonderful people who don’t get cranky, upset or tired.

Right smack dab in the middle of this tragedy, an awesome and  wonderful event occurred, our first grandchild was born!  Carson, a beautiful boy. He has been a constant joy in our lives.  I have the privilege to be able to care for him when Heidi and Jesse are working.  He is so much fun and I have to tell you, I don’t get much other work done.

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So for today, Leap Day, I want to take the time to say how grateful I am for my God who loves me and leads me through the difficult days and awesome days.

Ephesians 3:20  Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is work within us, to him be the the glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all the generations, for ever and ever! Amen.

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