Tuesday, September 28, 2010

St. Mary's County Fair 2010

This year our family decided to try something new, and we entered some items in the county fair. What a positive experience it was! Everything was so well organized. Signing up was a breeze (if you bring address labels...which I'm glad we remembered!) and the workers were generous with their encouragement. It was such a good experience...that this week we've entered our items in the Calvert County Fair!
Lizzie won Junior Champion for Quilting. I was so proud of her. It wasn't until I saw my blog that I realized I had helped her with the binding. But she had pieced and sewn the entire quilt. Besides, the only bad comment received was that the binding could have been better!

This is Anna's quilted table runner that I love. The picture doesn't do it justice.

Lizzie's quilted coasters won 2nd place.
Ruthie won 1st place for her treadle-sewn doll dress. She was so happy with herself...just the encouragement she needed.
Lizzie and Maggie both entered quilted belts and Lizzie's won 1st place.
Lizzie also won 1st place for her quilted tote bag. Anna had to enter her quilt in the adult division because she is 17. There were 8 other quilts entered. Anna didn't win anything but when she took her quilt to be entered, the lady eyed it all over, and praised Anna to no end! She then encouraged Anna to join one of the two local quilt guilds. That sounds wonderful!

I don't see any pictures here for Maggie, but she entered her honey and won 2nd place. Not bad considering we didn't know any of the rules! She won 20 out of 20 points for taste!! Maggie also entered her beloved acorns and won 2nd place. We think she would've won 1st place if we'd known to get acorns with caps on them. The week was definitely a learning experience!
Looky who greeted me on the way home yesterday. Same old black snake who lives at the entrance to our road. (I know the date says 2006. My camera's date has to be updated every time I replace the batteries. I'm just too lazy to do it.)
My neighbor is selling 10 acres directly across from our property. Anyone want to move to the woods? You'll have at least one friendly neighbor!
We've been enjoying a full moon for almost a week. I love it! I sit at my bedroom window and just watch it over our orchard. What a wonderful God we have to make something so beautiful.

Maggie's main therapist is changing her schedule around, so now my schedule is all out of sorts. Today is a day off for me, so I'm enjoying the rain showers. Yes, this week we're finally getting some much-needed rain. PTL

Off to do schooling and sewing. I got up early with hubby to run my van into the shop to fix the alignment so I don't drive off the right side of the road! Nice to be stranded at home.

Many blessings ~ Kathie

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Happy Punctuation Day!

Yes, there really is a National Punctuation Day! A news reporter got frustrated with all the daily punctuation errors, so he is doing his part to encourage correct punctuation. Go here to his interesting website.
Life here has been almost overwhelmingly busy. We also ran out of internet time...so I couldn't post for a few days. Now we are back online and I am recovering from all the post-vacation laundry. My parents hosted a weekend vacation down in VA for our extended family. (My brother Mike didn't make it because baby Kat is due any day!)
My pictures from this year's vacation are almost the same as last year's!
Allen got this sailboat catamaran from freecycle.org. Mike tried it out but said it was pretty hard to maneuver. There was a strong breeze for most of the weekend. The weather was perfect!
My children had fun doing all the usual water sports.
Dad's oysters are doing well.
Breakfast time with cousin Cody.
Simba and Abigail reading in the living room. As usual, life was fun with Abigail.
I helped Lizzie stitch some of her quilt. She did a perfect job on all the triangles.
That's Ruthie my cowgirl in the pink dress. Nothing like fishing with a cowboy hat on!
Allen caught a bunch of minnows for bait. The weekend ended up being terrible for fishing.
Meemaw was good for playing cards. My children always enjoy card games.
I guess lunch was boring.

We came home Sunday evening and woke up to a busy week. Today is our first easy day in a long while. I hope to clean the kitchen, then get some sewing done. Ruthie and I are both back down to 2 dresses. We have an upcoming wedding to go to, so I need to get busy!

There were so many things I wanted to write to clear my head but now that I'm at the computer, I've drawn a blank! Oh well. Maybe there will be a second post today.

Enjoy the beautiful weather. Our Mennonite friends are all still selling sweet corn...a record year. Usually the last of the corn is gone by Labor Day. But we are desperate for rain.

Many blessings ~ Kathie

Monday, September 13, 2010

Today was our first full day back into the swing of things. Lizzie and Ruthie had their first violin lesson since March when darling Clara was born. She's such a cutie! I can't believe I didn't get any pictures of her smiling because that's what we remember...her beautiful smiles! She sure looks like her Daddy. We had so much fun holding her during lessons.
Ruthie was so excited to get back into violin. She loves violin and Mrs. Adina.
Lizzie is a busy gal...she's currently taking piano, violin, voice and guitar lessons! Our goal for music lessons is to equip our children to become good church musicians. We've taught them the difference between right and wrong music...and they have become very discerning. While it is a lot of time away from home, we feel it is time well spent.
I downloaded a bunch of pictures from my family's camping trip this past weekend. The drive is beautiful through the rural landscape.
This is Low Water Bridge Campground in the Shenandoah Valley. My hubby and four children met our friends, Chris and Ellen, from GA, to kayak down the river. The water was in the low 70s which my children said was perfect. Even though the area is in a drought, the water was still deep enough...in the low normal range.
This is the famous mailbox across from the campground.
The cabin in the background is where Ellen and Chris stayed. My family took tents. The firewood was free, gleaned from the woods.
Inside the tent that later leaked...so they went inside the cabin with Ellen and Chris. Thanks so much for your graciousness, E&C! Lizzie woke Ellen up by falling out of bed, but she didn't get hurt.
Maggie organized all the food and meals. Here they are eating grilled pita pizzas with goat cheese. Looks like they also have salad.
Allen took this picture of the early morning mist on the river. Beautiful!
For breakfast they cooked hash browns and sausage patties...and eggs for the egg people. The healthy Mom's breakfast!
Allen in the kayak.
Lizzie in her kayak.
I'm trying to choose pictures that will give you a feel for the absolute beauty of the place.
Bad picture but good s'mores. Maggie was able to find a dark chocolate with no dairy. Yummy!
Group photo.

So calm and serene. The river is shallow with the occasional rocks. Very little rapids.
Here are some rocks. Single file everyone!
There's always lots of wildlife...eagles, racoons, snakes, turtles, etc.
Another group photo.
Always lots of cows. Lots of farms.
A corn snake. Last time we went, Anna almost stepped on a copperhead!
This swing looks inviting.
And last but not least, a crawfish. My family had a wonderful time. I think autumn is the best time for this trip.

Today we had 2 violin lessons, 4 piano lessons, 2 voice lessons, 6 loads of laundry, and lots of camping gear to put away. Sarah made shish kabobs for dinner, a family favorite. Everyone is tired and ready to get to bed early. Very unusual but very welcome.

Many blessings ~ Kathie

Sunday, September 12, 2010

This past Monday we had a Labor Day Picnic with 47 friends. The sweetness of the fellowship will last a long time for me. I had so much fun and felt relaxed the whole time. Thank you to everyone who came.

One week before the picnic, Anna asked what she could do to help with the picnic. I know she was thinking in terms of cleaning, but I asked her if she could possibly piece together two quilts to hang in the living room. Well...Anna worked hard and completely finished the two wall hangings! I love them!! Today I took 32 pictures and hardly one isn't blurry. The above quilt is the log cabin quilt in the Barn Raising pattern.

And this quilt is called Chinese Coins. I had pieced the 12 blocks almost a decade ago. Since they were sewn from the same brown fabrics, Anna decided to use them. This quilt kit was a best seller for me when I was selling on eBay. Anna now sells the kits in browns, blues, purples, and greens.
This is a close-up of the chinese coins. There are 24 different "coins" in each block. Ten years ago I searched the internet trying to find anything to do with this pattern and couldn't find anything. Nowadays this is a familiar pattern.
I took this picture of the wrong side of the quilt top while Anna was ironing it. This side looks almost as good as the right side!
Here is a picture showing both quilts. It sure completes my living room.
On the coffee table I have a table runner made out of the same browns as the quilt hanging. I enjoy table runners...or any other project I can finish in an afternoon!
This is the opposite side of my living room. This is my summer arrangement. As soon as it gets cool, I'll rearrange my sofas to face the fireplace. I always look forward to that! Thanks again for all your extra effort, Anna.

Anna is going to try selling quilt kits at three area craft fairs this fall. It will be a learning experience for both of us. If you have any suggestions about this...we are all ears!

Sarah has joined Weight Watchers online and we are all happy about the meal plans! Last night we ate BBQ chicken, rice, baked butternut squash, and asparagus. I don't normally like butternut squash but it was delicious! I poured some of Maggie's homemade herb dressing on my rice...yummy!
My friend, Lyn, gave me a hostess gift at our picnic. I will enjoy using these this Thanksgiving season. Thank you, Lyn. (I had to go snatch these back from Ruthie...she was using them with her play kitchen!)
I found this picture in my folder. Lizzie was very proud of the 35 bags of hay she raked and dried for her goats. They love her hay in the wintertime.

For those of you who saw my Dad at the picnic, yes, he was indeed feeling and looking terrible...and took an ambulance ride to the hospital Tuesday morning. He was sent on up to Washington Hospital Center. After several days, he finally came home on Friday evening with a little machine implanted in his chest. The drs are hoping the machine will record one of Dad's cardiac episodes so they figure out what's going on. Thank you for all your prayers.

My hubby and 4 middle children went to Virginia this weekend to kayak on the Shenandoah River. They are having a great time. I have a roast in the oven and look forward to a nice family dinner when they arrive home around 7:30 pm. Today our highest temp was 69 degrees!

Many blessings ~ Kathie

Take my life and let it be
Consecrated, Lord, to Thee.
Take my hands and let them move
At the impulse of Thy love,
At the impulse of Thy love!