Monday, August 31, 2015

The Cat's Meow

Since I had enough left over fabric from Zeke's neck scarves, I created a little wardrobe for the cats as well. George was willing to be my model for the photo shoot.

Their scarves are made to slide over the head and come off easy if they get caught on something.  I really thought they'd protest wearing them, but I guess it feels similar to their harness  because they have not protested one bit.

I started with these and they were a bit larger than I really wanted for them.  Then I learned that one of my triangular shaped rulers made the perfect template for cutting them to their size.

It was fun using up odds and ends of fabric I had on hand.

Thus the Halloween ones were created.

We don't do Vikings in our household, thank you.  So our cats are Packer Backers all the way.

Since we'll be in the southwest again eventually, the Kokepeli  and horses seemed like a great choice.

Then I just started digging for any scraps large enough to work.

It was a lot of fun and they don't wear them except for short periods of time when they feel a need to show off.  Mostly they just like being in their own fur.

Long Live the Queen of Cats

Sunday, August 30, 2015

The Potato Chip Bag

The new purse I made recently is from a pattern called "the potato chip bag".  No, it's not filled with potato chips (although that does sound good), it's because you can't make just one.

And they were right....these are so quick and fun to make I found I had created several more in no time. 

Of course I had to modify them to meet my needs by adding a space to hold my pens and Velcro to secure the flap.

These are just big enough to hold my camera, cell phone, wallet, couple of pens and odd bits of this and that.

Here's some of the ones from my left over batik fabrics:

Front of purse

Back of purse

Then I couldn't resist using the fat quarter of music note fabric for this one:

I can see all kinds of wild things a person could do with these, but I need to make myself stop now to finish up some other projects during this nice cool snap.

Long Live the Queen of Purses

Friday, August 28, 2015

Cooler Days Means Sewing

We finally had a cooler spell with some rain, so out came the sewing machine.  I got caught up on some clothing repairs, hemming, etc and finished up the batch of neck scarves for my granddog, Zeke. The photo session has not yet taken place to showcase his new wardrobe.  

Then I realized I could use his left overs to create little scarves for the cats.  I'm not sure how they'll feel about it, but it would be cute if only for a quick photo.

I also tried out a pattern I had purchased for a small purse and I just love the size of it.  Much smaller and lighter weight than my leather one.

front of purse

Back of purse

Hopefully the weather holds like this until I can get my Halloween quilt put together so I can get it finished before the fall season.

Long Live the Quilting Queen

Thursday, August 27, 2015

Good Fences Thursday

I've been away from Bloggerland for a bit as I've been having too much fun playing pickleball, messing around with the grandkids and sewing on these cooler days.

Photos of projects to follow, but since this is Good Fences Thursday, I thought I'd post this to get me back into the blog habit.

Long Live the Queen of Goofing Off

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Family Weekend

The family gathered for a wedding celebration last weekend at a resort in Brainerd MN.  It was an opportunity to see cousins we haven't visited with for several years.  Our camp neighbors took over cat care of George and Gracie so I could relax and enjoy the experience.  This made all the difference in the world to me!

The weather was sultry but the resort was at the edge of a lake with indoor and outdoor swimming pools, so that helped keep us cool.  With ping pong tables, air hockey and Miss Pac Man there was no problem staying busy.

On Saturday we went to the 371 Diner for lunch to fulfill Kiersten's need for hashbrowns and bacon.  
With hot chocolate, of course.

Being the older generation we were pretty much done with the reception by the time the music started and we all left to go back to the rooms with the exception of our party animal daughter, who caught a ride with one of the other cousins.

On Sunday we decided to skip the offered brunch as we all wanted to head back to our own homes and prepare for the coming week.   Kiersten started school on Monday, so she definitely needed some time to prepare.

On the way back we stopped in Little Falls MN to have our own family brunch at the AT Black & White.  We learned the AT stands for Amanda and Todd, the owners.

Since we were not regulars, the waitress turned on the huge airport sign for us to enjoy the green glow for a few minutes to snap some photos.

The food was fabulous and I had the breakfast flatbread, which consisted of an egg mixture, secret sauce, cheese and a slice of Andouille sausage on each piece.  It came with srircha  sauce to drizzle over it for a little extra bite.  Yum.

We got back mid afternoon on Sunday to enjoy a leisurely unpacking and sitting on the patio until the rain started.  Norm and Ginny stopped by to return the keys and give us an update on how the cats fared during our absence.

On Monday I went to play pickleball while Left Brain took his bike ride.  We met back at the RV about noon for a shower and then headed out to try Norm & Ginny's recommendation of Smashburger.  We'd never heard of them, but they seem to be everywhere.  Then it was off to Kohl's for some great sales on the running shorts we like. 

Tuesday Left Brain left for a long drive into La Crosse.  He had lunch with his friend, Larry; and then he had a 2:00 doctor appointment.

Since it was cold and rainy all day I stayed home and cooked up a storm, including some baking.  I even managed to figure out the TV and DVR to watch a comedy.  Sometimes these rainy quiet days are just the best.

Long Live the Queen

Thursday, August 13, 2015

Good Fences Thursday

Good Fences Thursday

I've been looking forward to a Thursday posting so I could share some of the great fences I saw from our garden tour this summer.

I just adore this garden bed, and what makes it special is the fencing all around it.  Especially the fence along this side of the garden, which is created from the blades of an old windmill.

What a clever idea!

I'll be off this weekend for a family event, but will resume again on Monday.

Long Live the Queen of Fences

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Monroe Crossing

We had the privilege of going to see one of the best bluegrass bands around, right here in Ham Lake MN.

Actually, they were performing in a church just about a mile down the road which made it every better.

We first saw this group at the Pump House Regional Art Center in La Crosse WI and fell in love with the music and them.

Here's a clip I found on You Tube since it's much better than anything I could have put together.  Enjoy.

I love these kind of lazy Sundays.

Long Live the Queen of Contentment

Sunday, August 9, 2015

Summer Days in Minnesota

It's been hot and humid this summer, just the way it should be in the Midwest.  It makes me miss the west again with it's dry air.  Oh well...keep calm and carry on!

The other day during pickleball play one of the older men commented that I sure had nice rosy cheeks.  I was just about to explain about acne roscea and how my face gets beet red and not to be alarmed when the second old codger comes back with "that's what happens when you wear white shorts".

I was stunned into silence (not an easy feat) as both of these guys grinned at me.  Note to self:  don't wear white shorts while playing pickleball.

My other favorite remark lately was at the lunch following the tournament.  My doubles partner told the story of  when he first arrived to learn to play.  Everyone was nice and very helpful, explaining the rules of the game and such.

But he said it was my laughter and smart mouth putting people into a festive mood that made him want to come back again.  Who would have known my big mouth could do something so positive?

In Winona, one of the players described me as having an intoxicating laugh.  

I like that so much better than my daughter's observation that I don't laugh so much as cackle. 

 She's right, however.  

It is more of a cackle.  

Hmmm, now that I think about it perhaps he was thinking I was drunk while playing.  I'll have to give that some more thought.

Long Live the Pensive (and Confused) Queen

Wednesday, August 5, 2015

Pickleball League

I was asked to join the Andover pickleball league for a game in Eden Prairie and I figured 'what the heck' and signed up.

This necessitated leaving about 5:00 for a one hour drive to the courts with a group who were carpooling.  We got there just in time to use the porta-potty and warm up a bit.

The warm up wasn't really needed as we got killed 11 - 0 our first game.  The woman serving made all 11 points and we never even got a turn to serve  It was a new and very humiliating experience for me.

We won the second game, only because I needed to wipe the smirk of one of the ladies faces, but then lost the third one.

I've never seen such phenomenal playing!  The opposing team was just brutal with killer serves and great placement.  And they were nice to boot so I couldn't even hate them properly.

We were supposed to get back home about 8:30, but it was decided that we'd do a double header to avoid the long drive a second time.  Oh great...and especially when I was playing so crappy.

By this time it's dark and we're playing under the lights, a new experience for me.  Our last game the opposing team asked if we could call it a tie since she was exhausted and just wanted to go home.  Couldn't agree fast enough!

It was very late by the time I got back to my RV.  Left Brain was already asleep so I sipped my drink and read while I mentally licked my wounds until I was ready for bed.

And just when I thought I was starting to get good at this sport!

Long Live the Humbled Queen

Monday, August 3, 2015

And the winner of the pickleball tournament is....

The mighty winners!
We had our tournament on Saturday and played in the relentless sun for three and half hours.  I thought I had more than enough water with me, but drank every last drop and could have used more.

There were some exceptional players there and they went into the "A" Bracket at the end of the round robin.  

I did manage to get into the "B" bracket with my favorite "sweaty buddy", Nate. 

It's just a weird thing we call each other, because...well, we sweat like pigs when we play.

My cheering squad consisted of Left Brain, Stephanie and Ted.  It was so great to have their support.

Also cheering but not shown were Nate's two little girls, Olivia and new BFF's.  They are 6 and 8, age spaced similar to my granddaughters and are just adorable.

Stephanie is my newest pickleball addict and I have bequeathed two of my paddles and several outdoor balls to her to keep busy when I leave.

She was so inspired by watching the tournament that she ordered two more paddles during the match to get the whole family playing.  

It's so nice to be able to afflict others with this sickness!

A big THANK YOU to Steph for taking the photos.  It seems to be the only time I get in them.

After the tournament we all piled over to a Mexican restaurant for lunch and much earned margaritas.  Nate opted for a pitcher of Mt Dew which he downed by himself.  Egads!  I'd be awake for a week if I did that.  Oh the blessing of youth.  His wife joined us later as she had been doing the "Dirty Girl Mud Run" that morning.  I'm sure it took a while to scrape off all that mud from the photos he showed us.

Sunday I got to chose to do whatever I wanted with the family to celebrate my recent birthday.  Yup, this family really stretches them out.  I opted to go to their house and enjoy their AC.  We picked up some grilling meat for supper and Steph came up with fresh corn on the cob and an ice cream cake for dessert.

We played some cribbage and then watched my all time favorite movie in the whole world...Fiddler on the Roof.  Now that I have shared this classic with the grandkids, I feel complete.  The best part was just hanging around and talking, discussing our vacation plans for Miami in December.

Monday I played some pickleball in the morning, ran some errands, grabbed lunch and dashed off to Dale's house for a cribbage match.  I had to leave after the first game and it wasn't because I lost horribly, I had a massage scheduled for 2:00.  Left Brain stayed behind and carried on the battle.  I have a feeling there will be several grudge matches over the remainder of the summer.

I had planned to do laundry after that, but instead slid myself into the car and went home to drink more water, sit in the shade and relax with my book.

Overall, it was a perfect summer weekend.

Long Live the Queen!