Thursday, September 29, 2011

History repeats itself


We visited my parents in Dorsten, Germany. This is in their back garden. Carsten, my sister's oldest, picked Helen up in his arms. Maren on the left and Tobias, the youngest, on the right.

Trying to re-create the picture including Tobias' shorts. Same place. Sarah was there too but not allowed to be in the picture. Carsten called to 'hurry up' .


Helen in her room in our first house in St Louis, Missouri. I had made Jemima Puddle Duck for her before Helen was even born. She loved that duck including chewing on the beak. It got mended several times.
I had made the pictures for her too. Fabric and felt.

William in his room. The pictures are hung. Jemima cleaned and mended one more time. No feet though. I can't find the pattern. It is in my hobby room somewhere. Sigh.

Aahh, were did the years go?

Monday, September 26, 2011

The newest Chrismon

Aahh, the nice feeling of accomplishment!

Several weeks ago my friend John from our former church in Paducah, Kentucky, asked what the Christian Symbol Ornament will be for Christmas 2012. Yes, 2012 !!! Grace Episcopal Church has a wonderful program. Every year a new ornament is made for each of the children in the church, wrapped up with the meaning of it. I have been involved since 1991 and have designed many, many of them.

John's question reminded me that I should be working on my second book.

After several attempts (this is the fifth's version) my newest 'baby':

          The Lamb

And here is the explanation (which is more difficult for me to write than the design itself):

Agnus Dei is Latin meaning “Lamb of God”. The lamb is often a symbol of Christ, symbolizing purity, meekness and sacrifice, gentleness of character, patience under suffering.

Prophetic pictures and references to the coming Lamb of God are scattered throughout the Bible's Old Testament. Many times we read about the importance of sacrificing a lamb, an innocent lamb without blemish to atone for sins. The stories of Abraham (Genesis 22) and the Passover (Exodus 12-13) are important examples.

Christ became that innocent lamb to take away our sins. Since Jesus' crucifixion sacrificing a lamb is no longer needed.

The next day John (the Baptist) saw Jesus coming toward him, and said, “Behold! The Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world!” (John 1:29)

For Christ, our Paschal lamb, has been sacrificed.” (1 Corinthians 5:7)

*  *  *
The step-by-step directions are also written. Now all I have to do is to figure out the material list for the bigger ornament for the church tree.

What I also have to do right now is put the washed bedding back on our bed or we have to sleep in the guest room. I get so carried away with my projects. Thanks, James, for having patience!

Thursday, September 22, 2011

This and That

Somehow I don't feel really productive these days. So many loose ends which all take time but nothing really to get a sense of accomplishment.

Oh, well, I finally did finish this pair of socks. I need the needles to knit socks for William. The poor boy has cold feet ... because they have grown!

The sock yarn had a little shiny metallic thread in it which I thought Sarah might like. Weather had turned so cold (for a few days) that I almost wanted to keep them.

Sarah and Wade had invited us for dinner. They like using their green egg. I took a picture of the chicken but then forgot to take more pictures of our hosts. Makes me wonder how important food is in my life, sigh.

We still can sit out on the back porch and just love it. This is my view from my seat. My hibiscus loves getting more water these days. This is the most blooms it had at one time. Too bad they only last one day though. But then there always more the next day.
Last night we had dear friends (which happen to be neighbors) over for dinner. We had a good time and I forgot to take pictures again. Did take a photo of the flowers I picked for the dining room table though. The vase is only about 4 inches tall but somehow flowers are such a wonderful creation. The Lord sure knows how to make people happy.

And now ... I think I will tackle my hobby room again. How can I accomplish anything if I can't find anything?

Thursday, September 15, 2011

William substitute?

For a month I was in Nashville sitting William whenever Helen needed time for her studies. Did Sarah think that there was a void now which needed filling? She and Wade went to the annual Waller/Stephens beach week and asked whether we could help with the animals.

We could help with one of those big dogs.

Schatzi likes to cuddle whenever she gets a chance. This is the first morning.

Early cup of tea in bed ... with Schatzi.

And the daily visit to give Edy (needy Edy!) some loving so she doesn't get psycho.  She is always happy to see me and purrrs so loudly that it can be heard across country when I am making a phone call while petting her.

Close-up. Isn't she cute?

But substitute for William?

Wednesday, September 14, 2011


Week before last James flew to Brazil. He had been called for some consulting. He always liked his work and likes a challenge, so he was happy to accept. From St Paulo he also had to travel to Aracaju in the Northeast part of Brazil and when he had some time after work to go to the local market he found lace.

He was very proud of himself to have found this table runner for me.

Yes, James, the half-stich circles are handmade bobbinlace. Very crude and starched to the max ... like a board ... but I am still very happy about it. Husband, you did well!

I can picture how the lace was made, probably in Fortaleza. That is were another great surprise came from in January 2005.

James managed to find a Brazilian lace pillow for me, stuffed with shredded banana leaves etc etc. probably made by the lacemaker herself.
If you are interested in more details, contact me and I can mail an article to you (in PDF form) which I had written for my lace guild.

The pins are thorns of a Mandacaru plant (cactus).

The bobbins are little coconuts from a Bilrreiros tree (local palm) attached to whittled sticks.

When the pillow had arrived, the lace part was in a great mess. I had to sort all out and made half of the lace in progress. It was a great surprise to me how comfortable it is to work with this pillow, these "pins" and homemade bobbins.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Back from Nashville

After a month in Nashville, it was time to return. Since James had left two weeks earlier, I had to do the drive all by myself .. and it wasn't bad at all. Good weather and easy roads since it was a Saturday. NPR and Dr Laura were good entertainment. Hurray for satellite radio.

But before James left I had to take this video of  William likes Grandpa's gadget  (click here) 

Main goal in Nashville was to be a help to Helen. She is doing well back in school again and we are proud of her. Helping out with William is not really a hardship. It is fun ... exhausting fun ... but fun.

In the "off-time" there was always something else to do. One thing on my mind is to William-proof the back deck. It was so cluttered with the grill and non-stackable chairs and definitely screaming "splinters".

Went to Home Despot and priced outdoor carpet. Not that bad!



A friend from Paducah came for an overnight-visit and we "hit" several yarn shops. We had a lot of fun. And William was a star with the knitting ladies in the shops.

And then I went on a day trip to Paducah for a hair appointment. Oh how I miss Lisa.

This is a before picture.

And this is an after picture. Oh, how much happier I am.

I had time to stop at our "old" church and met a good number of dear people by chance.

Sherry had advertised on Facebook free basil from her garden so I met her and John in their "basil patch". Sherrie also shared her pesto recipe so I hurried home and guess what I did then?

This really is Grandpa's job ... going for walks with William and coming back with him asleep. But walks are very good for me too.

William was very helpful in the kitchen.

He also likes our fancy door security  (click here)

Here are two videos showing how William helped me with  my knitting  (click here)  and  (click here)

He also likes  his remote (click here)  and  (click here). What a boy. Yup, definitely a male thing.

And then on a very hot day Ben came with all his tools and "we" (haha) did the deck. Well, he told me that I was a pretty good assistant.

Here the gate is cut out.

Yup, the deed is done. Oh, I hope James doesn't mind the surprise.

Ben did a super job!

And then he exchanged a plank which had warped upwards.

I couldn't wait to lay the carpet.

As soon as I had done it, the rain came. 

So we had to play indoors again. Kitchen duty again.

It is so much fun  watching him  (click here).

Finally the sun again. William approves of the deck and the new stackable chairs.
 No splinters.

More walks, Omi!
 Plenty of ducks on the golf course.
Traffic sign in our subdivision.

More about Block Lotto

Did you see my first BLOCK LOTTO squares in a previous blog? The violets.

I didn't win but had fun ... well, that's what counts. BLOCK LOTTO (see blog I am following) August is over and there are six winners of "violet squares". Winning was not important to me because I learned something new. And whatever I made and didn't use in a quilt myself was not wasted because this morning I sent my 'violets' off to two winners.

And since I had received a sneak-preview for September because I had posted before the deadline for August, I have already made 3 squares for the next Block Lotto. September: Curved Rails!
These three were all I was doing ... and I wanted to donate them ...

,,, but Helen looked at all those posted already on the site and thinks her husband would really love one (she says the one I made for them a year or two ago is too small for him).

Well, we can keep our fingers crossed.