Thursday, August 22, 2019

Sewing Slump

You would think my indoor confinement would translate into oodles of sewing progress, but that has not been the case. And truth be told, I'm not indoors all the time. I have GOT to get outside some just for my sanity. But, I seem to be in a sewing slump. Projects are mocking me from their respective bins:

And I feel a little guilty that I'm ignoring them. I HAVE added stitches to my little EPP project:

But my sewing chair remains empty.

I don't really want to cut fabric for a new project and my current project requires lots of hopping up and down which probably isn't the best idea for my knee right now:

I need more muslin for the connecting diamonds and trips to Hobby Lobby, or anywhere else, are out of the question right now. DH hasn't had to do the grocery shopping in the 32 years we've been married, but he picked up a few things the other day. I told him I'd be glad to turn groceries over to him permanently since he was doing such a wonderful job, but I don't think I'm going to get that pushed through. 😉

I'm doing quite a bit of reading. Our girl gave me a lovely stack of books for Christmas and I am devouring the stories and relishing the fact that I have the time to lose myself in the pages.

I am cooking although I'm keeping it pretty simple because it's just not fun heating up the kitchen when it's this hot

And yes, I'm trying to rest my leg and let it heal, but I'm not a very good patient. The other day I told a friend that I am kind of like a 2 yr-old insisting that "I DO IT!" And I want to thank all of ya'll for your many kind comments, thoughts and prayers - I am touched by your thoughtfulness. I'm still hobbling around, but have an appointment tomorrow.

Still, I'm not complaining - even if it sounds like it - 😉 because it could be worse and this will heal with time. I just hate that DH is having to pick up the slack. I think I'll mix up a batch of cookies and bake them while it's still fairly cool. Cookies are a love language around here. 😊

Friday, August 16, 2019

Medical Care

Warning: Whining ahead. I've been spending more time indoors than I usually do because of this:

Last week I twisted my knee when I was getting up after sitting on an unsteady rock to remove a mesquite thorn from my hiking boot. I managed to walk back to the house and figured I'd ease up a bit on my morning walk to let it heal for a few days. Then I was out in the coop and tripped over some of the chickens that were scurrying under my feet. I must have done a little jig in an attempt to not step on them, while avoiding a big rock, and to keep from falling into the Bird of Paradise bush. Needless to say, grace and coordination are not my strong suits and I'm very grateful the chickens were the only witnesses to my flailing limbs as I was unceremoniously planted in the dirt, again twisting my knee.

As I lay in bed that night, I wondered how I was going to get around. I remembered someone had left a pair of crutches in the bunkhouse before we moved here, but I knew I couldn't make it to the bunkhouse and I didn't want to wake DH. Then I remembered we had hiking sticks and they just happened to be leaning against the wall and within arms reach. Yay. DH fetched the crutches for me the next morning so I could go in to work, but I came straight home after work without running any errands. Crutches are cruel. My armpits hurt so bad that I almost cried putting on deodorant the next day. 😄

I did call a sports medicine clinic for an appointment, but they can't see me until next Thursday. They told me I could go to the emergency room. Um. NOT. First off, it's not an emergency and second, who can afford that?! I even thought about going to the vet. We were really good friends with the vet in Texas and if I was closer, I would be paying him a visit! I still may!

Just the other day I received a bill for a simple outpatient procedure in December:

Yep, you read that right and why did it take 9 months for me to receive it? Plus, I already paid $800 to the doctor. And yes, I have insurance. The hospital and I are about to have a come to Jesus meeting.

Now, I don't want to make this political, I'm fed up with politics, but dang it! We work hard for our money and we don't have a lot of it. We don't run to the doctor for every little thing - in fact I don't even have a regular doctor. The price of medical care is not affordable for folks like us, who work until April 15th just to pay our taxes. Yet others receive free health care. I don't get it.

I'm just praying that my leg heals, that I don't have to keep that appointment next Thursday, and that Jesus will help me mind my manners when I visit the hospital about that bill.

Monday, August 12, 2019

Melting in New Mexico

The August heat is just refusing to give us a break. 109°.110°.108°. Day. After day. After day. I cannot make myself walk into my sewing room. I'm spending my mornings outside - walking and tending to things like cleaning out the chicken coop,

scrubbing the grill, monitoring the great plumbing project at the bunkhouse,

and fighting a losing battle but trying to keep the yard alive.

This weekend we went to a shoot about 4 hours away and the weather was amazing - the high was 84°. When we checked into the motel, we were greeted by name, offered freshly baked cookies, and it began to rain. Hard to beat a welcome like that! On their recommendation, we ate at this little hole in the wall:

Cute little place:

And the food was amazing!

We had burgers with an incredibly flavorful beef patty, chopped brisket, slaw, and crispy fried onions on top. The buns were toasted - loved that. So not healthy, but goodness, was it ever delicious!

DH's shoot was fun and held at a facility that often hosts Cowboy Action events so they had an entire western town built:

We were only away one night and needed Sunday to recuperate. Monday dawned bright and early - we're having some mesquite sprayed today. No photos because I'm headed off to work at the Sale Barn this morning. Wishing ya'll a wonderful Monday and if any of ya'll have leftover cooler temps, please send them this way.

Saturday, August 3, 2019

What Should I Read Next

As those of you who have been reading here for some time know, I am an avid reader. I always have a book on my Kindle and I love audio books, but there is nothing that beats an honest to goodness real book. I am also a fan of a podcast called What Should I Read Next, by Anne Bogel aka: the modern Mrs. Darcy. However, it has increased my TBR (To Be Read) pile exponentially. For many of us bookworms, the what should I read next question is the first thing that pops into our heads the second we read the last sentence of our current book. Well, today I finished a book (Rainwater) and DH walked in with the mail that included a package from my mom. When I opened it, I found this:

The latest novel from my favorite teacher of all time. Mrs. Meacham was my high school English teacher and sponsor when I was editor of the school paper and I adored her. She was tough. And old school. And charming. And a southern lady. She encouraged my love of the written word - definitely not a popular trait with the cool kids. However, I never was one of those and Mrs. Meacham was smart enough to know that didn't matter one whit then...nor now.

In her 60's, she became an author. She is now 80, still writing up a storm, and today I had no problem answering that question. At 562 pages, it might be a while, but there are leftovers for dinner and freshly baked cookies so DH won't go hungry and he has assured me that for the time being, my sidekick services are not needed. I am eager to dive into the pages:

Thursday, August 1, 2019

Under the Needle: July

This month was fairly quiet on the sewing front. It may have something to do with the heat. You would think 100+ temps would drive one inside to sew, but who wants to sit next to a hot iron when it's 108° - not me! The heat's broken now, still 100°, but it put a damper on my sewing productivity. And the mornings are too nice to be inside. I fix breakfast for DH and head out the door with Skeet for our 5 mile excursion most mornings. Some mornings it's just 4 and then I'll sneak in another 2 in the evening. It's generally in the high 60's when we leave the house, but it warms up fast and it's been more humid than usual so tongues are hanging out a little longer than usual by the time we wrap things up:

We've had company and made a few road trips. With the recent rains, even ranch life has slowed down. We did work cattle for 4 days and I cooked and I've spent lots of time behind the lawn mower and the weed eater.

Still, I did manage to piece this quilt top early in the month:

And add to my pile of flying geese for the quilt for our boy

I made an apron with my Quilt Squad gals one Saturday for an event in December:

And yesterday I began a new project that uses up the leftover blues from the goose quilt:

But, alas, I have no quilt finishes to share this month. 😞

Monday, July 29, 2019

Perfect Potato Salad

My mom has a really good German potato salad that I love that uses Italian Dressing. My MIL's potato salad is a family favorite too. It's mayo based. Of course, I never met a potato I didn't like and when this recipe popped up in my Pinterest page, I thought I'd give it a shot.

One note: the original recipe calls for Famous Dave's Signature Spicy Pickle Relish. It's not available here so I just used a regular dill pickle relish. Jen has a great post with lots of tips for making this Kicked Up Potato Salad. I've added her link below. As always, I'm just posting it here so that it'll be handy for my friends and family. I can always put my finger on it if I've posted about it. 😉

Carlsbad Cravings Potato Salad

3 lbs Yukon gold or white potatoes
1 Tbsp salt
1/4 C dill pickle relish
6 green onions, diced
1 C chopped celery
4 hard boiled eggs, chopped
6 bacon strips, cooked and crumbled

1 C mayo
1/2 C sour cream
1 1/2 Tbsp cider vinegar
1 1/2 Tbsp mustard
1 Tbsp Hidden Valley Ranch salad dressing mix
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/4 tsp chili powder
1/4 tsp paprika
1/4 tsp pepper

*Cook potatoes, adding salt when water comes to a boil. Do not overcook. Refrigerate overnight or until cool. Peel and cube. Mix all dressing ingredients in same bowl you will add your potatoes.Stir in relish, green onions, celery and eggs. Chill overnight. Stir in bacon. Add additional salt and pepper.

Potato Salad isn't DH's favorite, but he really liked this and I found him digging into it more than a few times. That makes it a keeper and earns it a spot in my favorite recipes book.


Wednesday, July 24, 2019

Here a Goose, There a Goose...


Everywhere a goose, goose...


I've been collecting blues for a quilt for our boy for some time. Finding them has been a challenge, but I think I finally have a good selection. I have a large bin of blues, but most of them are tone on tone and I'll incorporate some of those, but I felt like the quilt was going to need some more lively geese.

And then I hemmed and hawed over a background fabric. I knew I didn't want white, but gray was definitely a possibility. It just had to be the right gray. Sigh. I had a couple of yards of this and I finally settled on it:

It's a Robert Kaufman, Architexture. Then I waited for inspiration to strike. Finally, it did, in the form of this:

There's no pattern and I contacted the blogger, but as of yet, I haven't received a reply. So my handy, dandy graph paper and I started sketching things out. Then I put rotary cutter to fabric and stitched up some blocks. I love the movement in this quilt and I hope the background I chose will not be too stark, yet showcase the fabrics.


And then things went awry. Flying geese quilts began to pop up on my radar and I found myself changing directions. Second guessing myself. Playing with other options. Digging through more ideas. Making more geese. This is so silly. So geese construction continues and who knows where they're going to land.

And no, the birds in the above photo are not geese. Humor me. 😉 But I did take it.

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