Saturday, May 31, 2008

The warm of the sun, the fertilizer, and water and the caladium bulbs develop their foliage. Day by day I see more growth. Its a sweet treat each day to see the growth. I'm planning the additional plantings I'll put with these caladiums, waiting to see where what is needed.

And on our back patio, I have a few photos of the pillows and plantings . . .  to give me a little bit of garden and respite. Not too much, not too little, just right. ;-)

Just finished up reading the book of Job. Each year's reading I learn more. I've enjoyed the reading more as I read Daily Walk's instruction and application ideas before tackling the day's reading. If you would care to subscribe to Daily walk visit:

As I take time to sit on the patio, to water plants, watch birds, read the Word, meditate upon what I've read . . . I think of this:

Be still, and know that I am God.
Psalm 46:10

Thursday, May 29, 2008

We are having a bit less rain and more frequent sunny warm days in the mid-80's. My caladiums are pushing up higher and higher each day. See?

Reading a really good book this week called For Women Only: What You Need To Know About The Inner Lives Of Men by Shaunti Feldhahn. Wow! It is an excellent book, the author interviewed 1000 men and asked them questions about how they saw things in relationships. Its a real eyeopener! I have a wonderful husband and this is going to help me love and respect him much more appropriately. I want to encourage him and thus build a stronger marriage. Even after 33 3/4 years together, one can never stop growing, learning, and building one's marriage relationship. has copies and your local library may have it as well, mine does.

Next on the stack of my books from the library is Austenland. I can't wait to see what that is about. Anyone else read this? I hope its light summer reading.

I'm trying to decide what Bible study to do on my own this summer. I have some materials on hand that I may work through. . . just need to take the time to consider which is the one for this summer. I will meet with some women for 6 weeks this summer to do a 'none homework' type study but know that I need to drink deeply each week or I just 'get through each week'. Even with a morning devotional time and prayer time, I need to meditate on a portion of scripture on a deeper level to lead to growth. How about you?

Today's work level was light - almost boring. Its ironic that last week was so work-heavy that I had to take it one-single-day-at-a-time until I got off work Saturday afternoon. Today and tomorrow will be light by comparison. I forget that weeks like this happen when I am going through a week like last week. I need to remember that weeks like the last one are not common and to just make the best of them, to not allow myself to increasingly feel so fatigued and overwhelmed by the load. Once one gets a good night's sleep, the next day is a new day to take on with fresh eyes. I purposed to do that and it helped but by the last day I was tired of the mental weight of it. When I left the building Saturday afternoon I felt like a kid getting out of school for summer. Giddy! Free! Energetic!
Truth for Life
Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.  
Matthew 6:34

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Over a week ago I planted pots on my front porch with Caladium bulbs. Our weather is now consistently warm enough to take that chance. Today I saw the plants pushing up through the potting soil. Its such an encouragement to see this! I'll try to photograph one of the pots daily until they are in full leaf. I love caladiums for my grandmother had them outside her home, they were cool, stately, and neat. She was a fun, warm, gracious lady and I plant them annually as a reminder of her. 

Zechariah 4:10a Who (with reason) despises the day of small things? 
This verse came to mind as I watered the pots this afternoon. We sometimes think our lives, our efforts, our hopes, our plans are so tiny, so simple that they won't be significant. In God's Hands, nothing is insignificant. No one is hopeless if we yield to Him.  I leave you with that thought as I continue to ponder on that truth.

Saturday, May 24, 2008

A rose by any other name. . .  would not smell as sweet! We have had some major home foundation repairs which led to replacing our back patio which led to our backyard flowerbeds to be uprooted and set aside for the time being. . . my beloved tiffany rose bush was one of the items uprooted. . . I had nearly forgotten about it until my dear husband brought me a rose bud, the only one so far, and tonight it has opened up and I wanted to share it with you. Ah, its fragrance is delightful!
And here is an item I have been meaning to share. . . I had the chance to be in Arizona in April with my husband while he attended a seminar related to his work. Our room had this art work in it and well, I thought to myself, that even while its a water color, it could be made by knitting a similar item and then matting and framing it. Knitterly art. Its an idea. . . . 

Home from work, got to see Indiana Jones's latest movie. Loved it! Did errands, bought outdoor pillows for our patio furniture and two for our den sofa. Little things mean a lot to home decor.  I can't wait to look out onto the patio in the morning to get the full affect. Its past sun down now and I put things in their places in the dark.

Night to all.
Saturday! I've worked all week and am at lunch at work today. *sigh* But things are looking good and I may be home mid-afternoon. Yea! I am going to start knitting a new dishcloth pattern called "baby fern". It is a lace-like design and should be lovely to use with a new bar of good quality soap in the shower or bath tub.

I'm sipping plain old black tea with a bit of milk today to keep me warm. Brrr, hospital buildings are cold!

Later this weekend we'll trim up our front flower beds, cook out, relax, and enjoy time together, my husband and I. I'm really looking forward to that.

No photos to offer today but when I'm home this weekend, I'll likely find something that needs to be shared.

Made some sticky buns for work today. How you ask? Easy! Buy the small bag of frozen dinner roll dough, the 12 pack of regular size rolls. Put in your refrigerator for a day so they thaw over time. Take them out and make them one solid mass of dough. (or thaw one full loaf of frozen bread dough).

Now warm in the microwave for 20 seconds twice. Then roll out to a large rectangle about 1/4 inch to 3/8 inch thick on a floured countertop with a rolling pin, let rest 10 minutes. Meanwhile, get out some ground cinnamon and brown sugar. Also melt one stick (1/2 cup) of butter and get out some white sugar and chopped nuts (nuts optional). Grease or spray Pam on a 9 by 13 inch pan.

Back to the dough. . . . roll it out a bit again, sprinkle with 1/3 cup brown sugar and 2 tsp. ground cinnamon. Roll us lengthwise and pinch the edges to seal. Slice into 24 slices, they will be a nice size and easier to share. . . . these are not meant to be giant rolls.

In the 9 by 13 pan pour the melted butter, add 1/2 cup brown sugar and 1/2 cup white sugar and 1 Tablespoon ground cinnamon with 1/2 cup chopped nuts. Stir to blend and spread onto the bottom of the pan. Now, lay the sliced rolls out in the pan, cut surfaces 'up'. Cover with a damp drying towel and let rise until double. If you are using a glass pan, you can 'hurry' the rising time up by putting the pan into the microwave for 20 seconds times two, turning between the two times of warming. Cover and allow to rise until doubled.

Heat oven to 350 and bake for 20 to 25 minutes. Put a serving tray over the top of the baked goodies, use oven mitts (this is HOT caramel and can burn!) and on the count of 3, invert the whole thing onto the serving tray. Carefully remove the 9 by 13 pan, scrape the pan clean of the sweet caramel goodness and spread onto the rolls.

Serve in 5 to 10 minutes while still quite warm but not so hot they burn your fingers and tongue.

Enjoy with tea, juice, or if you insist *sigh* coffee. Sweet goodness that will amaze you and your guests.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Still working on my fan and feather blanket but took a wee diversion to participate in the monthly dishcloth group. . . I usually knit in white cotton dishcloth yarn so I can use it for a gift with either a nice bar of bath soap or a foaming dish soap, depending upon who I give it to and for what use I think they will likely use it. 

Here is the dishcloth at the end of day 4's instruction. It seems the others in the group are knitting up a different look using the pattern we are given 10 rows of each day - but I am following it line by line. I like what I'm producing, even if I have mistakenly done it wrong. 

I've learned to do yarn overs backwards and to purl through the back loop. I like these projects for they are small, can-do sizes that are not overwhelming. I also love that I get only 10 lines of the pattern each day and I can manage that on most any day. . . it may be the last thing I do before drifting off to sleep, ah, is a quiet moment of contemplation before dreaming. Other days its the last thing I do in the morning before heading out to work. . . it gives me a sense of having accomplished something I adore before I face the days challenges.

Comments? Thoughts? 

Saturday, May 17, 2008

This pattern comes from a Fan and Feather dishcloth found at

Decide the width you want your blanket to be. The pattern is an 18 stitch repeat and add the number of stitches you want for a border. Use knitting markers to keep track of the 18 stitch pattern, it will save you from having to tear out sections and save you time.

This is a mindless lace pattern, or nearly mindless knitting for only 1 of the 4 rows of the pattern requires you to attend to it and after you have knit it a bit you will find the stitch markers keep you on track and it becomes nearly mindless on that row too. The difference I love about this pattern is that it becomes a one sided fabric with a right and wrong side, the difference on the right side is lovely!

Cast on the number of desired stitches bearing in mind your borders and the 18 stitch pattern repeat. 

Knit 8 rows for a border, then begin the pattern. (I used 6 stitches for my side border at each end. 

Row 1: K6, K to last 6 stitches and K6
Row 2: K6, P to last 6 stitches and K6
Row 3: K6,* (K2tog) 3 times; (YO, K1) 6 times; (K2tog) 3 times; repeat from * until last 6 stitches, K6
Row 4: K6, P to last 6 stitches, and K6

Repeat these four rows until your blanket is the size you desire with a repeat of 8 rows of knitting for a garter stitch end. Cast off loosely. Weave in ends, wash, block, and dry.

Voila! A washable heirloom appearance that is perfect for a baby or if made larger, a lovely elegant afghn or lap blanket for the guest room or your favorite reading chair.

Enjoy, enjoy! Its a good beginner lace pattern.

Another week has come and gone! And in this week I've finished up a long course of Bible study, enjoyed it SO much. We studied the Gospel of John, part 1. The last class was on Lazarus' being raised. It was a fabulous ending to the spring study. We had lunch after class and the group brought the food - all so very good. I hope to get the recipes and share them online here.

On the needles, I finished up a dishcloth I'd begun in April and returned to my first fan and feather baby blanket I started in April, too. I am in LOVE with this pattern. I found a variation on it that creates a right and wrong side. It is beautiful! See the photos? 

While I'm knitting I'm listening to an unabridged book, a Debbie Macomber. Its a newly released one Twenty Wishes. Its a perfect book to listen to while knitting. I recommend it to all.

Today we finally got to work in our yard. I filled two big pots with plants, one is to be my herb kitchen garden the other is my floral garden. We had a new patio put in this winter and well, they covered my former flower bed so I'm going to be a gardening in containers this year. With work and other interests it may be just the size for this season in my life now.

I also potted my front pots by our door, I love Caladiums, the ones that are only white with green, no touch of red in them. My grandmother had caladiums around her very modern home in Tulsa when she was alive. That remembrance became a tradition of my own some years ago. I buy the bulbs at Walmart or Lowes in Feb/March each year when such bulbs are for sale. Then I hold them until May to plant as the ground temperature must be rather warm before they can do well. So, today was just that day. I can't wait to see them up and gracing the entrance of my front porch. When they come up I'll post a photo. 

I also need to find a new front door wreath. We did a major home decluttering last year when our home's foundation was repaired as everything inside had to be put in the garage and well, since we were boxing it all up, we went through things quickly.  I tossed out my years of collecting silk flowers that I used to adorn a plain basic grapevine wreath on the front door. I have a silk-like ivy wrapped around it and changed the flowers to be seasonal colors - it was easy and very dramatic. Many of my friends thought I had 12 wreaths, one for each month. I told them that all I did was put in or pull out the flowers and make them fit the month's colors or season. I learned them from my walking buddy. 

Enjoy the photos. . . perhaps it will inspire someone else to knit a blanket in fan and feather. Its an easy lace to knit and I LOVE the impact. It looks so ornate and yet is only a 4 row pattern with only one row needing attention. 

I'll post the pattern next.

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Saturday, May 10th I was a nervous woman. I had prepared for weeks to give a 30 minute speech at my church's annual Mother Daughter brunch. The lovely time was a tea - be still my heart! They had the lovely idea of using the flowering teas as the centerpiece and how they pulled it together is show stopping! We got to watch the tea unfold and blossom during the time we sipped, savored, and giggled our way through the delightful foods and beverages. Two of my guests were bold enough to try a taste and they liked the tea.

The display tea was purchased at our local Linen and Things store. Its sold in a canister of 12 packages with one display tea ball in each or smaller canisters of 3 individually wrapped tea 'balls'. If you use their 20% off coupons you can really get them down to about $1 each! Each display tea 'ball' can be used 3 to 4 times so you can sit and enjoy many pots of tea with friends enjoying the show of the tea unfurling into lovely works of art.

Enjoy the photos - the tables were so pretty, the food plentiful and delicious, and the company, grande!

It is always wonderful confirmation when the blessing for the food, the introductions, etc. all mention the direction ones talk is going - and none of us had shared our thoughts ahead of time. I spoke relating the flowering teas on the table and how they represent so much about the ages and stages of women, the legacy we Christian women have the privilege and calling to pass along to others, and some humor about being a grandmother, mother, daughter, aunt, sister, and friend. The attendees laughed, cried, grinned, and listened. 

I am so grateful the words I shared were ones that touched their hearts. That made all the hours of research, prayer, 'listening', watching, and writing worthwhile. I once again admire and am amazed that anyone could write a book. It is SUCH work to create a new topic and flesh it out to inform, inspire, and entertain a group of women from age 4 to 98!

It was delightful to share it with a table of 8 friends - women of all ages, one mother-daughter team, one step-mom/daughter team, and the rest of us without our children, or a single women. . . . so we celebrated sisterhood at our table and had a good time.

Happy Mother's Day! I love the beautiful flowers I received from my granddaugher Avery by mail on Wednesday - made a rainy day bright and cheerful to open the box and find such lovely flowers and the card with a message from her. Isn't she darling?

Meet my granddaughter Avery! She is now 4 months old and is seen wearing a smocked dress we gave her upon her birth. I knit the little booties she is wearing. The booties pattern is found at:

I am on Ravelry as knitteang. . . . visit my member page there to see my current projects and completed ones as well. I've made many items for our grandbaby who was born in January of this year. Since then I had hoped to join in a mystery lace KAL but it seemed to develop so many problems on all levels and then became a group that one had to pay to continue in, etc. that I dropped out. Now I have 2 lovely hanks of KnitPicks gloss lace weight and don't know quite what to do with it. I even bought some new addi lace needles and now they sit in a nice project bag - silently waiting for their future use.

In the meantime, Mother's Day just now. . .as my mother has died I always make a single white rose corsage each to year to wear on mother's day and my dear daughter has remedied my annual search for just one white rose by giving me a dozen assorted colored roses last year and now this year (this year 'from' my 4 month old granddaughter).

My dear husband bought me a new James Avery pendant, the very same design I gave my daughter 5 years ago as a charm for a special memory charm bracelet. My pendant is larger than her charm but it means so much to me for its about a mother's love. My daughter now wears her charm as a pendant since she was pregnant with our grandbaby and still wears it. I adore that charm and when I discovered it came in the form of a pendant that is larger. . . well, I put it on my 'wish list' and my husband picked up on that item. (

My next post will show the lovely setting of a mother-daughter brunch I spoke at yesterday; it was our church's annual event.