Monday, October 18, 2021

Cool Weather


As days go, yesterday just . . . wasn't.  I think it was turning on the heat in the morning and remembering the winter feel.  And I didn't want that reminder.  I appreciated the warmth, don't get me wrong.

I did get out this embroidery project, untouched since last winter, and made some progress.  I think I'll set up a craft table in my cozy bedroom, with a good lamp and a few tools, for hand sewing projects.

And maybe recycle in a change in curtains and bedding.


Thursday, October 14, 2021

Lighted Pumpkin


Time to pick up the Halloween candy.  I'm always hopeful for some Trick or Treaters.

I'm very aware of the shorter days in the evenings.  Mornings are different, I enjoy getting up in the dark and watching the sky lighten.  But evenings - I always want more light.

I ordered some new window candles and I'll set them out soon, probably when the time changes on November 7 but maybe before.

There was a pair of black slacks waiting in a pile to go to Goodwill.  I always liked them but felt a little self conscious wearing them because they were a little too short.  And so . . . now they are capris and I am happy.

My books recently, I don't know.  I'm returning three today that I started reading and just didn't want to put the time into finishing them.  Good books are a treasure but mediocre books just aren't.

Tuesday, October 12, 2021

Little Red Tomatoes, Little Brown Dog


The cherry tomatoes in my garden are winding down.  If the weather holds, there will be a few more.

My little brown grand dog Milo in North Carolina has a volunteer tomato plant by the front steps.  He has become accustomed to looking for a ripe tomato on his way into the house.  Here he is, looking at the last tomato.  And it isn't even ripe.

I wish I could just give him mine.  I told his people they will need to purchase some.  A little dog needs his tomatoes.  

Sunday, October 10, 2021

Frozen Squash and Sweet Potatoes


If you haven't tried the frozen sweet potatoes or butternut squash, here is your bit of encouragement.  Especially with the squash, cutting it up always seems a little daunting to me and it's so nice to have that part done.

And look up a nice recipe for squash sausage soup, it's so good.  I won't share mine because I might just lose you at Field Roast veggie sausage but there are some good recipes out there.  And I felt virtuous digging out the blender and actually using it.

Last night Aaron and some friends celebrated his birthday by visiting Kings Island Halloween Haunt, then having a sleep over.  I don't know whether they got to ride a single ride, it was super crowded, but hopefully they got into one or two of the haunted houses.

His birthday was actually a month ago, but life is busy.  And so, fourteen.  In eighth grade, he got a late start with school because of his September birthday.

Catch up with Nora:  her appendicitis is resolving, the antibiotic treatment is finished..

Saturday, October 9, 2021

It Really Is Saturday


Some sweet small napkins with soft fabric left from a curtain project.  The serger three-thread narrow overlock is my favorite finish for this kind of thing.

This morning I got an email from a friend asking if I was going to church in person today or watching on facebook.  There was more than a moment of panic.  I'm the worship leader this Sunday and I was still in pajamas. I had to print out the materials (not a small deal with my old cantankerous printer), not to mention practicing a few times.  And the drive/parking takes at least 25 minutes.  

I must have checked my phone and fitbit ten times to reassure myself that yes, it really is Saturday.

But somehow the gift of all that is that this day stretches out so nicely and whatever I do seems like a bonus.  Like these napkins.  And putting together half the blocks on a baby quilt.  Making a grilled cheese sandwich for breakfast - don't judge me.  

Friday, October 8, 2021

Green Pumpkin


Two weeks ago, when we got this pumpkin at The Twisted Apple, an organic orchard near Hendersonville, NC, it was a glossy green.  Gorgeous.

Now it has turned orange in selected places.  Fascinating.  Still gorgeous.  Will it soon be all orange?

I trimmed back one of the ornamental grasses today, so if you come up my sidewalk you won't trip.  You're welcome.

But, there is a hole in the concrete under my porch.  And a small chipmunk poked his head out while I was working.  As you may know, I don't do small creatures well in enclosed spaces.  I am imagining it getting into my basement, running around, going up the steps . . . I don't even want to go there.  I have to deal with this.  And it's one of those things that I don't even know where to call.

Thursday, October 7, 2021

October Table Toppers


I have two daughters, so I made two of these October table toppers.  Sorry, I can't remember the name of the Moda charm packs that I used, but I know I used Cupcake Mix Recipe 4.

I've realized that my new machine has a wider default three-step zig zag, and I like that.  It adds a little interest to the edges.  And it was fun to find just the right binding fabric in my stash of Halloween fabrics.  It has a subtle candy corn print.

And so, on this rainy day, a trip to the post office.  Maybe I will see if they have Christmas stamps.

And maybe I will walk around just a little and check out the new music venue across the street.  It's huge, part of a new development along the Ohio River.

Wednesday, October 6, 2021

If You Are Weary

Thanks to Liz Lamoreux for her email yesterday with this poem/story.  If you are weary of our world sometimes and just plain despair, give it a read.  It's a quick and easy feel-better piece.

read Gate A-4 by Naomi Shihab Nye

It's a lovely break from our politics and discord and violence.

Tuesday, October 5, 2021

Corn Pudding


Corn Pudding

  • 1 box Jiffy Corn Muffin Mix
  • 1 can creamed corn
  • 1 can corn, drained
  • 1 cup fat free sour cream (or you can use regular)
  • 1 stick melted butter

Mix together and bake at 350 degrees for 45 minutes in an 8" pan.

I like to add an egg too.  And then freeze some for other days. 

One of these days, I'll channel my Berea days and make some spoonbread from the Boone Tavern recipe.  Someone even gave me a lovely pottery bowl just for that.  The recipe is a little more complicated so I'll let you research that.  Eggs, milk, corn meal, butter, etc.  It's definitely worth making.

Dinner at Boone Tavern just isn't dinner without the server putting a scoop of spoonbread on your plate. 

Monday, October 4, 2021

Wall Hanging Redo


I liked this Christmas tree wall hanging enough that I made a second in a brighter color palette.  I do have two daughters, after all.  The pattern is by Fig Tree & Co. and uses a charm pack plus a little yardage.

My friend just emailed that she is having her furnace serviced today.  I've hardly thought about that yet.  The unit has been blessedly quiet in that magical space between ac and heat and my budget appreciates that.  

Last night I started to make corn pudding, happy that I'd bought the sour cream that I needed to complete the recipe.  And then realized that somewhere along the line I'd used up the Jiffy Mix that is the basis for the whole thing.  Maybe tonight there will be corn pudding.

Folks in Cincinnati tend to not be Steelers fans, primarily because of the Bengals/Steelers rivalry.  The Bengals played on Thursday night, so last night I watched Green Bay win over the Steelers and felt pretty happy about thatMy dad was such a football fan and he passed the love of that sport on to me.

Sunday, October 3, 2021

Orange Sculpture


While waiting to go upstairs to visit my grand girl, I spotted this armadillo sculpture in the Cincinnati Children's Hospital lobby.  Such a whimsical guy.  One of the orange discs says "Can you count how many toes I have?"

Nora had appendicitis and is being treated with antibiotics vs surgery.  Fingers crossed for her.  Life is hard for teens sometimes.

She was able to perform her drum major duties for her band competition last night.  This was a very big deal for her, only two competitions this year.  We can only hope that next year will be a more normal year, whatever that looks like.  Last year there were no competitions at all.

The band placed fourth overall.

And so.  With my visit to Asheville and Nora's illness and taking Aaron to golf matches, which I love, I haven't touched a sewing machine in a long time.  Well, not really, but it seems that way.

Yesterday I actually went to the grocery store with a list.  I really, really want to do better with food preparation.  I have a couple of new recipes torn out of magazines and another marked on my laptop.  Once again, fingers crossed.

Friday, October 1, 2021



At Skytop Orchards between Hendersonville, North Carolina, and Greenville, South Carolina.  Way up a mountain, great views on the way.

In Winnie's arms, little brown dog Milo.  In my hands, wonderful cider donuts.  The line for those was so long, with good reason.

There was also coffee and cider, a store, pick your own orchard, maybe even a petting zoo.  It was crowded, so we didn't stick around to see.  Scored those warm donuts and made our way back to the car.

Last night I ate the last donut, a few minutes in the oven at 250 degrees.  There are other orchards that have cider donuts, just not warm from the fryer with the whole experience.  Sarah and Winnie did find some gluten free donuts at another orchard, and I got a wonderful gluten free apple pie.

And a bright green pumpkin with little bumps, which is now turning more orange every day.  Still pretty.