Thursday, October 23, 2014

Experiencing the 1920's/Folkwear 264

Another Book Club costume!  This was from our late summer book in August.  We read An American Tragedy by Theodore Dreiser, which was written in 1925.  It is a bit out of the time frame we usually read (Victorian), but it was perfect for a summer setting.  I was Sondra Finchley for this gathering.  I made my dress using Folkwear's pattern 264.  

I liked the pattern; however, it is far too long.  Plus they were a little short on direction for making the section where the top meets the skirt at a point go in properly.  So I may re-do the attachment, and in the process shorten it. It's not a measure of simply turning up more of a hem - I lined the dress, and attached the skirt and its lining together at the hem line to make a smooth edge.  But all I will need to do is trim the skirt section at the top and restitch it.  Then I can fix the point and sew it in more professionally.  I also made the chiffon scarf.  I love chiffon!  It feels so soft, just perfect for spoiled Sondra to wear to an afternoon tea!


Saturday, October 18, 2014


Tyler and "Grammy" last month at a late-summer visit to the Botanical Gardens.  Such a blessing for the both of them that they have gotten to know each other - not everyone gets the privilege of knowing their great-grandparent or great-grandchild.

Friday, August 15, 2014

Pesto From The Garden

We had ciabatta and mozzarella cheese from the grocery, but had forgotten the pesto to go with these yummy sandwiches.  I was going to use plain basil leaves from the garden, but then thought that maybe I could make my own pesto (something I have never done).  We just happened to have pine nuts and grated Parmesan (not fresh like the recipe recommended, sorry!).  I mixed it up ...

...and then we made these wonderful sandwiches (using our garden tomatoes as well).  Delicious!

Sunday, July 27, 2014

Fruit from the Garden

After a dreadfully cold winter, a rainy and cold spring, we are exhausted.  However, the plentiful rains were much appreciated by our cherry tree and our raspberry bushes.  We have been enjoying a bumper crop of each.  My friend Dorothy came over with her family and picked four large Ziplock bags of cherries to make "Drunken Cherries" (brandied cherries).  Julie and Grandson picked a huge bowl of cherries for us.  Every day Paul and I go outside and eat raspberries right off the shrub; Paul takes some to work with him.

I finally pitted the cherries, and found the best and fasted way I know of so far: Instead of picking up two at a time and smushing them until the pit pops out, I now stand by two bowls, use my thumb to split the cherry, take the pit between thumb and forefinger and drop into the bowl to the right, put the good part in the bowl to the left.  This is at least twice as fast as my old smushing method.  Then the cherries can be cooked with the other ingredients for cherry pie filling.  (Note: as you are cooking them, observe carefully for any pits that might have inadvertently snuck into the good stuff.  I found five in my pot, in spite of how careful I was.)  The pies were delicious!

Cherry Tree


Homemade Cherry Pie.  Yum!

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Tea Ladies and Little Golden Books

Once a month I play Mah Jong with some of my Tea Ladies. It's lots of fun: we have lunch (usually with a glass of wine or two!), then we play the game, and then dessert, with tea served throughout the afternoon. This time we were at my sister Barbara's house. She had the cutest book, Everything I Need To Know I Learned From a Little Golden Book. This book takes the artwork from the Little Golden Books of years ago and compiles their sentiments into life advice. Much nostalgia to be had!  I was inspired to buy three more vintage books to add to My Kitten, which I bought recently. I bought Baby Listens, My Little Golden Book About God, and Georgie Finds a Grandpa.  

Tonight I opened up the packages and showed them to Tyler. He wanted me to read two of them to him. I made it through My Little Golden Book About God without a hitch, but when I started reading Georgie Finds a Grandpa, I simply could not get past the first few pages without crying! Such a sweet book, a happy ending, but I was caught up with feeling bad for Georgie in the beginning of the book, while reflecting on what a great grandpa Tyler has in Paul. Anyway, I turned the book over to Paul to have him finish reading it. Vintage books are such fun!

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

I Should Probably Explain (Choir)

I realized that I never did explain how I ended up back in the church choir.  You may remember past posts here and here.  I had had simply a terrible experience with a former choir director.  He has since moved on to apparently greener pastures, and a new director was hired, one who had worked off and on there previously.  I was not planning to rejoin the choir, but God intervened in a most fascinating way.

There was this one Sunday in the summer of 2013, after the other director left, when I went back to my church.  We had been away for almost six months.  Somehow, we ended up at the 9:00 Mass, which we never go to (we are not early birds).  It just so happened that another former choir member ended up sitting right behind us.  After Mass, we walked out and ran into yet another choir member, one who was/is still an active member.  He asked us both if we would come back.  It became one of those situations, "I'll come back if you'll come back!"  And we both did.

I am very glad to be back.  It is not a perfect choir; every choir and director has its idiosyncrasies.  But in general I am happy there and glad to be singing again.  I have not offered to play harp there yet.  I don't know that I will; I was so traumatized by my previous experience.  But at least I am making music for the Lord again.  And that is a good thing.

The View from the Choir Loft - Lovely!

Thursday, May 8, 2014

Grandson's First Holy Communion

Tyler celebrated his First Holy Communion last Saturday.  How nice it is for him!  He has been waiting for this day anxiously, lately asking us each Sunday if it was time for him to receive.  It was a lovely ceremony.  The day after we had a big family party.  Lots of fun with family!

Before the ceremony, all spiffed up.

His banner for the pew.  Da and I helped him with the shapes, and then I stitched them to the banner.

We gave Tyler a small cross to wear.  

Mama and Ty at the church after the ceremony.