Thursday, February 26, 2009

My First Quilt - Cowboys

This is the first quilt I made. The visual processing disorder that prevents me from seeing written patterns. I also have a very difficult time measuring. This part of my "disabibity" is called dyscalculia.

As you can see I have a flannel back. My friend Diane did the quilting did hand stitched a star on each cowboy block. She is amazing!

My Second Quilt - The Fish

This is the second quilt I made. It is fish in bug jars.
Here is the back. It is a beautiful batik. I bought it at Thimble Creek.

My friend Diane quilted this. She hand stitched a fish /christian symbol in each fish block.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Rambling thoughts of a food addict

Did your mom ever make homemade frosting and put it on gram crackers? I used to love it!

I loved eating fried bologna with yellow mustard.

I used to love eating raw hot dogs.

In the summer when it was really hot my friends and I used to get a Cola Icy after swimming in the local pool.

I like frozen hostess Ding-Dongs and Little Debbie peanut butter bars.

One of my fondest food memories was when we went to Montana and my aunt use to fry fresh trout with cornmeal for breakfast, yummy !

When I was a teenager my best friends mother used to make us cornmeal mush loaf. We would slice it and put syrup on it. It was SOOO good. I always wonder if anyone ate cornmeal mush loaf?

My family used to make "ring a round" - peanut butter and Karo syrup, and put it on toast.

Do you remember tuna used to come in Light and Dark? I used to like the dark.

My mother used to leave the butter out so it would be soft when you wanted to use it. I still like room temperature butter.

Sometimes I wonder what peoples food habits are outside of California especially outside bay area. Do people buy fresh local food, or is eating food out of the can ok?

I wonder if in other parts of the U.S. people are looked down on if they eat at a chain restaurant? Or is that only true here?

I wonder if people still smoke in restaurants ( I know they do in Las Vegas)

Can you remember drinking whole milk? I did not know there was any other kind.

I am making myself hungry. I guess I should go check out the freezer if I have anything hidden way.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

One Wish

If I could have one wish, it would be that I could spell. People have the misconception that if you cannot spell you are a complete idiot. Some people also believe that if you can not spell
you are illiterate. The next thing people seem to think is if you cannot spell you have no intelligence. I have heard these three arguments all my life. The fact of the matter is spelling has nothing to do with your intelligence. 

The dictionary definition of intelligences is "the ability to acquire and apply knowledge and skills."

The dictionary definition of illiterate is "unable to read and write." 

I am able to acquire knowledge and skill. On top of that I can read.  Imagine that. 
The problem I have is that I have a visual processing disorder. The disorder makes it impossible for me to spell and see patterns . What is really bad if two words are close in spelling I cannot see the difference, therefor, I find it difficult to distinguish what word is the right one. So spell checker puts in the wrong word, and I think it is fine.

Here is the response I get if I tell people I am dyslexic. They say "I am too" haha. Umm - sorry most likely your not.

I hate it when I read social websites such as and I see people calling someone who can't spell stupid. It makes me afraid to say what I am thinking and post on the site. Why should the good spellers be the only one's that have a voice? That's why I started this blog. I can say what I am thinking and if I spell something wrong oh well. 

If spelling words properly is something that is key to your life, I guess you will have to move on to the next blog. 

Red Hen Quilt Shop

Yesterday I went to The Red Hen Quilt Shop. It is in Woodland, CA. I have to warn you it is OUT IN THE BOONIES. Do not go there without your GPS. You need to call and set up an appointment with the owner before you go.

My sister in law and my niece decided they wanted to go on the hunt for the fabric store with me. Neither one of them quilt. We drive out of town on a two lane county road with green farmland and grazing cows. I enjoyed the ride in the country. We are being lead by my friend GARMIN. GARMIN starts saying “recalculating.” We know we had missed our turn. We back tracked and found out we had missed a one lane gravel road with no sign.

The gravel road had big pot wholes filled with muddy rain water. I did not know I would have to have a 4 wheel drive to get to this quilt shop. At the end of the gravel road it curved and turned into a paved road. The quilt store is the 3ed house. We found it YEPPIE!

The owner is warm and friendly. She welcomed us in and invited us to stay for a pot luck. This quilt store is in a back room of a private home. She also has a room with discount fabric. Her regular fabric is 30% off the sticker price because you have to "drive all the way" out there as the owner puts it. I noticed she stocks Moda, RJR, Thimbleberries, Blank, P & B and Timeless Treasures, jelly rolls, layer cakes, rulers and pattern books. I did not have enough time to see what other brands she had as my sister in law and niece felt as if they were in Oz not being quilters. So I needed to hurry.

Parking is easy. Just pull up in the drive way. I plan to go back someday and spend more time.

Links to Free Quilting & Sewing Patterns





In the Beginning

Marcus Fabrics

P &B Textiles

South Seas Imports

Timeless Treasures

Free sprit

Marcus Fabrics

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Meet Midget the Great Dane

Here are a few photos of my nieces new puppy.  Her name is Midget . She is four months old and weights 40 lbs. Is is already almost as tall as her cousin Bailey the Boxer. She is SOO sweet.

Friday, February 20, 2009

Sara the Rodigan Ridgeback

Sara is one of my two dogs.  She is a Rhodesian Ridgeback

I adopted her from the RR rescue. Sara has kept her girlish figure all these years. I wish I could say the same about myself. 
She is gentle, graceful and smart. Sometimes I wonder if she is not a 60 pound cat in a dogs body. 

Sara hates to take a bath and you had better not get her head wet! I am not allowed to use a hair dryer on her, as it is two hot (even on the coolest setting.) It may dry out her lovely skin. Her favorite part of the bath ritual is getting towel dried.  She smiles and her eyes twinkle when I dry her with her favorite extra soft towel. She thinks I am her personal masseuse

Sara loves to run. She is swift and can make sharp turns on a dime. Sara loves it even more when Jack our other dog chases her. 

Sara has never been a dog to play fetch because it is beneath her royal highness. You are supposed to bring the toy to her if you want to play with a dog toy. 

When we go out and come home, even if we have only been gone for 5 minutes she will go get her favorite toy and show the toy to us. We may not to touch it. We are suppose to be happy that she has given us permission to LOOK at her favorite toy of the day. 

Sara is a rescue dog and she is skittish. She does not warm up to people quickly. She is very picky about who she will choose to be her friend. I am one of the chosen few. 

Sara's test of friendship: She will bring you her favorite toy of the day and put it in your lap if she chooses you to be her friend. Give her back her toy and that is it. You are now her life long friend. If you make the mistake of throwing the toy, you lose. 

Sara loves carrots. It is her favorite food. Dog food is ok, but Sara would prefer steak every night.  Ifsteak is not available Sara wants to eat what ever I eat because she watches me cook it. Why would she want to eat something that comes out of a bag or can?

Sara’s funniest quirt is if she is mad at my husband or I, if we are gone longer then she thinks we should be, she takes the toilet paper and TP’S the house. We come home and there is toilet paper unrolled down the hall, around the kitchen, it circles the dining room table a few a times and end in the living-room. I can see her with the toilet paper in her mouth, running around the house joyfully punishing us for being gone for what she perceives as much to long. 

She loves to be hugged. Underneath that loud bark, and big ego, she is a very sweet little girl.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Did you know ?

A fascintating UTube about the past and the future.

What do you think it all means?

Monday, February 16, 2009

Red Hen Quilt Shop

On Saturday I am going to the Red Hen Quilt Shop in Woodland. I am looking forward to it. I will let you know about it when I get back.

Cute Hummingbird Nest

My Dad made this little wooden hummingbird wind catcher years ago. It hangs on his back porch near a hummingbird feeder. The other day he noticed a busy humming bird building a nest on top of the wooden replica. It is SO cute!

Sunday, February 15, 2009

The Most Unusual Places I Have Stayed

Safari West

Safari West has 400 acres of wild adventure. You can take the their 3 hour tour on their double decker jeep. The kids loved sitting on top of the jeep. When we were on the “safari” an ostrich thought that I as dinner. It is kind of scary having a bird that is 6 feet tall pecking at you. We all got a good laugh out of it.

They have giraffes, gazelles, scimitar-horned oryx, ostrich and African antelope, cape buffalo, zebras, wilder beasts. These animals roam freely. In a in closer they have cheetahs, the primates resplendent area and a bird aviary. When we where there a rattle snake had come to visit aviary as well.

Adults $68; Children (3-12) $30; Infant (1-2) $10.

After your Safari you may be hungry. We eat the Safari Ranch Dinner at the Savannah Cafe. It was very good. If you have any dietary issues they are happy to accommodate you.


Lunch : $19.00 per adult, $14.00 per child (4-12)

Dinner: $29.00 per adult, $17.00 per child (4-12)

After dinner the cook took us up to the lagoon where he feed the catfish. It was like a shark feeding frenzy. I have never seen anything like that in my life. I told the kids to hold my hands, I couldn't image what it would be like if they fell in.


Suitable for up to six people, perfect for the family. It has two-bedrooms with a king bed and a double bunk bed. Private bathroom, kitchenette mini refrigerator, sink, microwave and coffee maker and patio.


$350.00 a night for four people, each additional guest $25.00.

Continental breakfast is included.

Safari Tents:

Sleeping in a tent is not what you think at Safari west. These are luxurious tents are imported from Africa and are built on high wooden platforms. Each tent is beautifully decorated. They have different size beds in each and each has a shower. Tents are equipped with a deck can sit and view giraffes and the lagoon.

$170 - $260 Sunday through Thursdays

$175 - $265 Fridays

$175 - $295 Saturdays

YWAM Mendocino Coast / The Lord’s Land

Family Friendly

This is very cool place with a history. The original owner was a German immigrate who became a hippie. She wanted to have a commune where young people go go to live off the land and be free to express themselves artistically or otherwise. They started building cabins. The hippies not wanting to conform to the norm made each cabin unique. They were the original recyclers. They used broken beer and wine bottles to make stain glass. In the early 70’s some Jesus Freaks (as they called themselves) found their way to the Mendocino Coast. The hippie commune ended up transforming into a clean and sober hippie Jesus Freak commune. In the early 1990’s, the Lords Land became open to the public.

Warning, this place is rustic. Some cabins have outhouses. You may have to hike up /down a hill to get to your cabin. If you are afraid of spiders or other creepy crawlies don’t go. No telephones, faxes or computers. They have some stick policies. Call for more information.

The Madonna Inn

This a a family friendly Inn and Steakhouse. I bet The Mondana Inn is the most outrageously decorated facility in California.

Each room has a theme. For example

The Caveman, Yahoo, Buffalo, The Old mill an the Fabulous Fiftys. We stayed in a cave room. My husband worried all night that the bolder we where sleeping under was going to crash down on us. The room include a waterfall shower. I liked the shower so much I wanted one at home.

When your hungry try:

The Gold Rush Steakhouse is decorated in bright pink with gold scroll work. It has 50’s style booths and tables. Bring your sunglasses. If you want something sweet they have a bakery with yummy pastries. If you want a cocktail try the Silver Bar decorated in an old west brothel style. They now have a Coffee Cafe.


The Men’s Bathroom has a waterfall instead of a urinal.

They have a spa if you would like a facial or a massage.

They have swimming pool.

Kids under 16 stay free in there parents room.

Sorry no pets.

No smoking.

Monday, February 9, 2009

My Favorite Fabric Stores

Stone Mountain  & Daughter Fabrics  - Berkeley.

It so fun to go there because of the diversity in people and fabric. Some people from may be leery to go someplace where the homeless quilter shops for 100 % organic cotton along side the rich lady who wants to make a dress for the some charity even she is hosting for a  a political figure. It is worth your time going there. The store is large with a wide selection of fabric. Plan to spend at least a hour. Parking is difficult at best and you must pay the meter and get a stub to put in your windshield. 


Sew Ewe Quilt -Brentwood

I love this fabric store! The people here are so friendly. It is kind of hard to find because it it behind a hotel in a very plain office looking building. It has 4000 square feet of fun. They have many layer cakes and jelly rolls (maybe turnovers now not sure.) It has a huge sale room where you can find Moda and other brand name fabrics at a fraction of the regular price. They have a wall of tools and rulers. The Sew Ewe has an excellent selection of  jelly rolls, layer cakes and traditional patterns. Plenty of FREE parking.

The Cornerstone Quilt Shoppe - Fairfield

I like to stop here first if I am going to the outlets in Vacaville. The people who work there are friendly and helpful. They have a quilt and dinner night that sounds like fun.  They have a good selection of fabric. They also do long arm quilting. If you know what fabric you want, you can call them and they will be happy to send it in the mail to you. It is located in the old town part of Fairfield. Parking is easy but they have meters. They are not good at updating there website, so call first before you go there. 

Beverly's Craft & Fabric Store - Concord

Beverly's has a great selection of fabric. If you go Monday - Friday there is a very nice lady who works the fabric counter. If you go later in the evening you never know who will be cutting the fabric, so you are taking your chances. They have a large selection of flannel all year around. They have 3 different places for discount fabric. Along the back wall, by the cutting counter, and in the back room middle aisle.

Main Street Quilts - Martinez

I love this this place. They make you feel comfortable if your a beginner or advanced quilter. They have have a comfortable sitting area for you or your husband/boyfriend if you are dragging him along. If you are having trouble with color matching this is the place to go. The owner has an expert eye for color. They will go the extra mile trying to help no matter what your quilting problem is.  They have a good selection of fabrics. Long arm quilting is available.  Quit stores are having a hard time staying open these days, I hope you will go to this one. Parking can be tough, the store is located on a small one way section of Main Street. Parking is metered. They are not open on Sunday or Monday.

Donnas Quilting Loft Concord

(925) 672-1016 - I have not been able to find a website for them.

This is a small fabric and quilt store. I think they have a long arm quilter there. They have some unique fabric. The employees are aloof. But I have found so fabric there I have not seen in the others around town.

It is in a strip mall and Parking is free.

Thimblecreek - Concord

I want to say upfront I like this shop. This is an upscale fabric store with upscale employees and teachers. I think they are snobby until they get to know you.  If you are sewing on a Brother or any other kind of generic sewing machine don't tell them. It is frowned on. ( I made that mistake once) If you take your quilt top in make sure all your points match, or you will send them into a panic attack. I have to say I love their selection of civil war fabric and Japanese fabric. They hang  quilts up by the pattern so you can see what the finished product looks. They have top notch classes. The shop is hidden way among office and small business buildings. It is hard to find at first. Parking is free.  

The Cotton Patch -Lafayette

This is a good size shop. They have a big selection of fat quarters. They are somewhat snobby. They also have top teaches and speakers who come to their shop. Free Parking but limited.

The Quilter's Inn - Danville

This is a pleasant little shop. The employees are kind and helpful. They have a good selection of fabric. They are located in a strip mall and parking is free but difficult. 

Queen B Quilt Store

This is a friendly quilt store. It seems to me they have a good verity of panels. This is in the old part of town, and it has meter parking. 

Joann's Fabric and Craft Store- Concord

Joann's has some great sales. I like it when they have a 50 % off coupon. I go and buy battening. They have a good size fabric department. Don't expect to get help for color matching. 

Parking is free.

I hope you will comment on your experience with these shops. 

Sunday, February 8, 2009


This cold rainy weather makes me think of the hot summers. That reminds me of swimming, I thought about the days when I was a sexy-speedy Ferrari in a black and red bikini. I could not fathom a time when I would turn into a comfortable old Cadillac or what kind of bathing suit I would be wearing.

This brings me to buying a bathing. I LOVE to swim. For quite a few years I was tormented every summer with the thought of putting on a bathing suit. I don't to see any of my own imperfections. I don't want anyone else to have to look at them.

As far as that goes I do not want to look at other people imperfections either. This can include but not limited to; men fat bellies in Speedos or women's fat bellies in bikinis, dimpling cellulite on people's butts and legs. I do not want to look at women who choose to be to skinny and they look like walking dead in a thong, Or ladies whose bathing suit top does not hold them up and their flat boobs are hanging down to their waist. Or the worst of imperfection of them all... men's hairy backs.

I have found the solution, the perfect bathing suit. I call it the "burqa bathing suit". I am covered from the top of my neck, to the bottom of my ankle. Really it is not a bad thing. I ware it because I choose to ware it. I am free to go swimming anytime without the worries. Not only that but I feel more modest in a burqa bathing.I still get looks becuase people are not used to seeing someone all covered up on the beach or at the pool.  BUT I DON"T CARE. I am free to be me.

Maybe I will start a new trend among old Cadillac's or religious woman or hair old men! Maybe I should start designing my own bathing suit. I will call my business "Burkas Bathing Beauties'". My slogan will be "COVER UP AND BE HAPPY for everyones sake.

Well I had better get to work so I can make money to start my new business. And soon I will be happy swimming in my burka.


The other day I walked out of my house to get something out of my car, I noticed a cop pull up across the street. He got out of his car and walked out of sight. Well, no doubt I had to find out what was going on. To my shock and dismay the cop is standing over a big RAT in the middle of the street. He says a cat had it and dropped it when he got out of his car (how could a cat have a rat as big as a small child in his mouth? )The rat was stunned. 

The next thing I know I am screaming PULL OUT YOUR GUN AND SHOOT IT ! KILL IT!!! This cop was very young, looks like he just got out of high school. (I am still screaming SHOT IT over and over) he says "I can't do that" all the while he is nudging that rat towards my house. My mind is racing "GET IN YOUR CAR AND RUN IT OVER, FAST JUMP IN YOUR CAR AND RUN HIM OVER", the cop sweetly says "that would hurt him", YES KILL IT, THE RAT WON"T FEEL A THING YOU HAVE TO KILL HIM", the rat is getting closer to my house, " THE RAT MUST BE POISONED OR HAVE RABIES , IF YOU SEND HIM OVER HERE MY DOGS WILL EAT HIM, so you HAVE TO KILL IT!!! (The cop is not listening!) RATS ARE NOT SUPPOSE TO BE OUT DURING THE DAY LIGHT KILL IT. HE IS GOING TO CHEW THE WIRES AND HOLES IN MY HOUSE KILL IT! THE RAT IS THE BAD GUY KILL IT! 

The cop kindly says I am sorry I cant do that. The rat scurries to my next door neighbor Pete's driveway. The cop seems satisfied gets in his car and drives away. I am hyperventilating. Just about that time the neighborhood Stan the safety hero (who happens to be a decorated Vietnam veteran) comes out of his house and asked me what's going on. I tell him the about the rat and the cop . I asked Stand the safety hero to save me from the evil rat. Stan being the hero he is, grabs a shovel. YEAHHHHHHHHH, we are going to kill a rat I am thinking. We get up into Pete's e drive way and the rat starts to run away, all of a sudden I see the shovel go over Stan's head and I hear a CLUNK. DING DONG THE RAT IS DEAD,THE RAT IS DEAD! Stan the hero saves the day. He scoops the rat up and puts it in Pete's garbage can. The traumatic ordeal is over. I tell Stan how lucky I am to live next door to the brave. Later that day I call Stan to tell him again how thankful that we have a neighborhood hero. He tells me a few minuets later the cop comes back and starts looking for the rat. The cop gives up and goes away. I wonder why the cop came back? Maybe he decided he was going to kill the rat after all.   To late Stan gets all the glory!

The Choking Incident

It all started in the morning. The first thing that happened was that I went to Bedford Gallery in Walnut Creek to look at the "illuminating" sculptures with my students. In the entryway there was a sculpture that looked like a short fat green glowing chimney. I was walking past it and I made a sudden turn because someone was calling my name. My hand hit the "chimney" and a brick fell off the structure. The curator came running out and asked what happened. I told him. He was very upset. He inspected the brick for any minor disfigurement then looked on the floor. He said is that brick dust? ummm yeah it is brick dust. Then he was really pissed. His little assistant ran to the back room and got a pure virginal brick with no blemishes (I couldn't see anything wrong with the first one.) He replaced the brick and stomped off. I told him I was sorry. He did not respond. I was ready to tell him that sculpture hurt my hand and I was going to have to sue. Thankfully it did not go that far. Why didn't the artiest glue the stupid bricks anyways?  

When I got home I got a call that I was fired from a job I never started. I won't go into that right now. 

Then me and my husband went out to Chinese food with my dad and now x- girlfriend. It was very uncomfortable at first. Dad's x-girlfriend was bragging about how good this food. The hostess and owner wife was very irritating. The stood at our table for a good 15 minuets telling us how good the food was. After looking at the menu my husband was insisting that we eat a family dinner so we could try everything. My dad's x wanted no part of that. She did not like our family. She got mad and threw her pink fake sugar packet on the table. Well, as it ended up my dad, my husband and I had the family dinner. We had just started eating. My husband chocked. He stopped breathing. Me being the super CPR hero I am said "are you breathing" he shook his head NO. I jumped up and started doing the Heimlich maneuver on my husband. The first time I tried nothing happened. The second time I let him have it ( i had been waiting all these years) it worked! Liquid and food started coming out of his nose and mouth after the second punch to his gullet the food broke free. Once my husband regained his composure , he turned to me and said "thank you for saving my life" I said "your welcome". We keep eating and talking about my dog pepperjack. My dads x- girlfriend lost her appetite durning the choking episode. She could not eat one more bite. My dad, my husband and I kept eating. We are tough and a little choking and food/liquid coming out of the nose is not going to ruin our dinner. She had to take her dinner home. Anyways I was glad to come home and go to bed.