Sunday, May 31, 2009

Friday Creation

video

I just love this idea Jacob had!

Nine Patch Quilt Along - One more for Week 5 and one ahead for Week 6

Jacob's First Holy Communion

It is hard to believe that my first baby boy could have possibly made his First Holy Communion yesterday, but it is true. And it was a wonderful day!

He ordered breakfast burritos for his special day's breakfast and then after breakfast he opened his gift from Brian and I. It was fun because I don't think he was expecting a gift. We had wanted to give it to him before the Mass so that he could take it along and have Father bless it. We gave him a "real Bible"! It meant a lot to us to give him a Bible now. Not a Bible story book or children's version of the Bible, but a complete Catholic translation of the Bible. We wanted it to be the Bible he would begin pouring over now and carry with him all the way into his adult years. It was a lovely version of the NAB and we bought him a lovely case to carry it in. It was a wonderful find with an eagle on it (his favorite) and the passage from Isaiah about soaring on wings of eagles. He was so excited to open it. At some point after opening it, he picked it up to look at it again and he hugged it. Talk about melt your heart. I pray this will be a great beginning of a wonderful journey through Scripture and through life.


The rest of the morning was spent in a flurry of activity preparing ourselves for the Mass at one o'clock and the celebration afterwards at home. For several days I had been having very strong feelings that I had not done enough to prepare him for this Sacrament. Deep down I felt he was probably more prepared than a lot of children, but I will always wonder if I could have done more. I guess I have to rest in the fact that I planted the seed and the Lord will reap the harvest. And I know it is only the beginning of growing in his reception of the Body and Blood of Jesus. Even I know I do not receive Him anywhere near as perfectly as I could. May it be a blessed journey.

The Mass was lovely. Both of our priests and one of our deacons celebrated the Mass. Our family and friends were there to share in this special day. He was so genuinely excited to receive the Eucharist. He had been talking about it for weeks, months. As I knelt next to him before going up to communion, I remember saying things like, "it's almost time Jacob!" and "I can't believe it! It's really time to receive Jesus!" I was so excited myself. It was so emotional for me. Brian and I walked up directly behind him as a couple and I was tearing up all the way. What tears of joy! He received Jesus - Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity! I pray this will deepen my understanding and sense of wonder and awe as I receive the Eucharist in the future.

Jacob and our fantastic, lovable pastor, Father Skip


Jacob in front of the tabernacle after Mass.


Jacob and our beloved Father Benny, the parochial vicar of the parish.

After Mass, he had a wonderful dessert party at home with friends and family. On the menu were cake and sherbet punch, chocolate chip cookies, fudge and my dear friends incredible wonderful chocolate mousse.

He was worn out by day's end, but it was a good tired. During prayers that night he expressed thankfulness fore receiving his First Holy Communion and told Jesus he couldn't wait to receive his Second Holy Communion on Pentecost (today). What a blessing! What a wonderful time in his life! Thanks to all of you who prayed for him. Continue to pray for him, and all the children for that matter, that their faith may grow stronger day by day, month by month, year by year until Jesus comes to take them home at a ripe OLD age.

Friday, May 29, 2009

Thank You Lila Tueller

Thanks to Lila Tueller's beautiful Woodland Bloom fabric (all of her fabrics are scrumptious) and not to my skill, I have another finished quilt which I adore. It is one of those things that I look at and feel happy just in doing so. I don't know if she would be at the show in Houston in October, but I would love to meet her!

Woodland Seasons Quilt


I had pinned this quilt last Friday and never got around to quilting it over the long weekend. I began working on it on Tuesday and finished quilting it last night. I also made the binding last night. That is so not like me. I am in the habit of making my binding before I even start the quilting process. It is all mental, but then I feel like there is no extra step between quilting and binding the quilt to completion. Anyway, I sewed on the binding this morning and then tossed the quilt in the washer/dryer. It came out so soft and crinkling and wonderful!

This is one of the biggest quilts I have quilted on my own machine. Even so, it was only 45" x 60". It is also the first bigger quilt I have quilted with the meandering/stippling type of free motion quilting that I have been enjoying so much. It was so much fun. It could be hard to manage all the fabric at times and so that made me mess up a little more often than normal. But then that is why I enjoy random free motion quilting so much. You never notice the mistakes!

I love my new quilt!



Now on to complete my other quilt using Lila Tueller's Soiree fabric.

Budding Entomologist

Andrew has just been fascinated with the jumping spider we caught. He carries the jar around with him. The other day I encouraged him to study his spider with the magnifying glass. He asked if I would help him draw the spider. I drew an outline for him and he colored it in. He was so cute. He would color a little bit and then stop to observe the spider's markings with the magnifying glass. Another reason to love homeschooling!

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Nine Patch Quilt Along - Week 4 AND Week 5 minus one

I think I have said this many times before - I AM SO LOVING THIS QUILT ALONG! I can't believe how quickly it is going and how much fun it is to pull all these squares together. I think I am more than half way through. I did a little extra last week on the quilt along while my friends and I had a quilting night. I counted up my squares by sevens today and found I am a square shy of 5 weeks worth of quilt blocks - yippee! So here are my nine patches for weeks 4 and 5. Enjoy!



In other quilting news today....

Last Friday I pin basted my Woodland Bloom Disappearing Nine Patch quilt. I think it deserves a new name and I think Jacob actually helped me name it. While I was pinning it on the kitchen floor, he came over and complimented me on the quilt. He asked if it was for spring or summer or what? I misunderstood his question and at the same time had a revelation as I looked at the quilt. I immediately said, well I guess it's all four seasons. It seemed to me that the four color variations of squares each seemed to stand for a season - spring, summer, fall and winter. So i guess I will name it Woodland Seasons. Anyway, I began quilting it today. And thank you, friend, (you know who you are) for helping choose green for the quilting thread. It is turning out just perfect!



AND.........drum roll please!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


I am SO EXCITED!!!!! Yesterday, Brian was working very hard on our garage and he and his dad brought in my set of cabinets from the garage! Look at my sewing area!!!!! I can't believe it. I am so blessed to have such a space. Part of this blessing is due to my sister and brother-in -law. While we were in the other house, they were remodeling their kitchen. They offered us their old cabinets, otherwise they would be thrown out. We took them all and they were always in the garage. As we were preparing to move, Brian wasn't sure he would need them all in the garage and I asked if I could have 4 feet worth to make a cutting area in my sewing corner. I am so blessed!


Brian needs to finish covering an outlet behind the cabinets so I can have a phone in the game room. Once that is done we will attach the cabinets together and put a counter top surface on the top. My original idea was to buy a precut 48" (just the perfect size) of formica for $40 at Lowes and attach it. This counter top is meant to be for my cutting mat. I have always preferred to cut at counter top level. It is the most comfortable. I need to make sure the usable surface is around 23 1/2" to fit my mat. If it is too small then Brian can buy a piece of plywood, cut it to size, sand and rout it and coat it with polyurethane. We shall see. I am so excited to have the surface most of all and also the storage. This will free up the top of my big white desk (far left - the littler lower piece is in front of the window with my machine - perfect) for ironing and arranging quilt block pieces, etc. Did I say I was excited? Thank you dear husband. You are the best!

Happy day and happy quilting!

Summer has arrived

Here on the Texas Gulf Coast, we are feeling the heat...the heat of summer, that is. It has arrived and we will be sweating it for the next 5 to 6 months - literally. If you didn't already know, Houston has only two seasons. Summer and not summer. :)

So with the heat comes very necessary treats! Thanks dear friends for our ice cream sandwich maker!


And along with summer heat and yummy cool treats, come lots of interesting beasts!

We caught this jumping spider (approx. 1/2"), Phidippus Audax at lunch time on the outside of our door to the patio. Mommy is so brave. The things I never thought I'd do!


HAPPY SUMMER!

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Crossover


Tonight my great big wonderful boy of a Wolf Scout became a super outstanding Bear Scout! Congratulations, sweet son! We love you so!

Nine Patch A Day Quilt Along - Week 3

I can't tell you how much fun I am having pulling these nine patch squares together. It is very satisfying to stand there in front of my stash and choose some fabrics to make into one more or two more nine patches. Not all of them are my favorites. Not all of them incorporate memories from quilts I have made. They are all FUN! I am excited that all pulled together they will make a very fun, memorable and interesting quilt. So......here is my installment for week three. I made one extra with my Bluebonnet/Texas wildflower fabric in there. That was a fun way to throw a little bit of my Texas heritage in there! Enjoy!




Oh and here are my Soiree rectangles all laid out to make my Stacked Coins Baby Quilt. Except it won't be for a baby! Unless that baby of course is little ol' me! I love this fabric WAY too much to part with it. I love everything Lila Tueller has produced so far. I will not part with my Woodland Bloom quilt either. AND I plan to buy her Santorini fabric when it comes out and do something spectacular with it and never let go of it either!

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Yummy

Great sauce recipe here! Easy! A winner!

Baseball and Buddies

This next Saturday will see the last game in our second year playing with Family Homeschool Baseball in our area. We have loved every minute of it. I know Jacob will be so sad to see it end, but even more excited when it rolls around again next year! He has been part of a wonderful team that thankfully includes his best friend. It has been fun for both Jacob and Brian. We absolutely love the organization and how Christian they are. Great experience all around!

Way to go Jacob and the Braves!!!

Jacob playing catcher!

Jacob and his best friend. May their friendship be blessed forever!

It looks like someone is having fun cheering his teammates on!
In the outfield - such concentration!!!

At bat!

Jacob and his proud Daddy!

Once again at bat.

Grass

Spaghetti



Why is it "veteran" mothers who seem to possess a small remaining shred of common sense, still insist on giving two year olds spaghetti?




Photo opportunities, of course!!! Duh?

Week 2 - Nine Patch a Day Quilt Along

I meant to post these on Sunday or Monday as I finish a set of 7, but I forgot! Busy, busy weekend. I am SO enjoying this quilt along!!!! Go see the Flickr group.

Wednesday, May 06, 2009

What I learned last weekend

This past weekend was pretty normal as weekends go for us. We had baseball on Saturday morning, we had Mass scheduled and this Sunday was our parish's annual festival.

One thing was different.

We had an extra 2 year old in the mix. While some dear friends of ours went north of town for a wonderful marriage retreat, we kept their precious two year old daughter. I am sure we all wondered how it would go. It seemed all weekend that we were trying "five" on for size. It went beautifully. Of course if we were to be blessed with another child, it would not arrive as a two year old, but some things are even easier about a baby than a two year old!

I think the most important thing I learned this weekend is that "we can do it!" Not just have another child, but survive another child, be happy around the house with another child, be normal having another child. It is so easy for me to think too often how overwhelmed I feel or how tired I am or how difficult parts of our days can be. But I realized that so much of "surviving" is all about my attitude, my frame of mind and my heart - and yes, a little extra sleep would probably help. :) Having this sweet, sweet girl was a lot of fun. It made me want to do something like it again - allowing others, especially those who don't have family nearby, a night away. I came out of the weekend thinking that I don't want to allow myself to limit myself. The road I am thinking I should take is always the easier one in my mind's eye. But there is so much to be gained from stretching myself and requiring things of myself so that God can shape me further into who he desires me to be.

I am not sure I am making much sense, but I see it very clearly in my mind and heart.

What else did I learn?

Number One: Mikey is a ham!!!!! I think I already knew that one.


Number Two: I can have fun at a festival on a warm day with five children as long as I am not trapped under a small, stuffy, crowded tent with all five children and their food.


Number Three: I can eat tacos while being surrounded.


Number Four: Little girls don't care for much else at festivals if it isn't the stuffed animal booth or face painting or food.

One A Day - A Quilt Along

A couple of weeks ago I joined my first ever internet quilt along. I've heard about them, but never had the opportunity to join in at the beginning of one. A few weeks ago one of my favorite quilting bloggers started a new quilt along. Anyone who joins in makes one nine patch quilt block each day from scraps pr whatever you want to use. I thought, "I can do this!" And what a wonderful way to work in all my scraps and bits and pieces. I have been wanting to do a quilt that encompasses all the different leftover fabrics from the many quilts I have made. This is turning out to be a wonderful way to do that. We share our photos on a Flickr group and quilt away! (You can see my Flickr account in the sidebar) I am really enjoying it. It takes me tops 15 to 20 minutes to make a block each day - from cutting to finishing.

Here is my first week's results. I made one extra block the first week because I was going to have a really busy Sunday and didn't think I'd get one done.

Sad Excuse for a Blogger!

Things have been so incredibly busy. I can't begin to offer excuses for not blogging so I will move on!

Here's a short recap!


We've had Easter.


We went strawberry picking.



We came close to flooding.



We have had a late birthday party for a precious girl.

Add on to that....Sponsoring two engaged couples through our Parish/Diocese Sponsor Couple Program (this is our ministry right now and we enjoy it). Baseball for Jacob. Ballet. CCE (now over). Working on the new house. Homeschooling. Just living.

While I am exhausted and crabby sometimes, it is all good. Life is good.