I Cor 16:14

"Let all that you do be done with love." I Cor 16:14

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Rockome Gardens

If you find yourself traveling through Illinois this summer you may want to stop and visit the small town of Arcola.  It is home to Rockome Gardens where I spent a couple of hours meandering through their delightful gardens  It is known for it's interesting rock structures built during the depression years when work was slow. 

It is located in an Amish community.  If you look closely you can see the horse and buggy traveling on the road behind the garden.

These black-eyed susans and cone flower are so bright and cheerful together.  There are about 7 Amish women who plant and take care of the gardens full time.

Located on the property are old buildings such as this one room schoolhouse.  Hard to imagine school being like that when today my children are used to computers and smartboards.  My oldest son wondered why there were holes in the top of the desk!!

Arcola is also the birthplace of Johnny Gruelle, the creator of the Raggedy Ann and Andy dolls and books.  I thought this large dollhouse was just too cute.  Can you imagine the adventures and house playing that could go on in those walls??

This garden was impressive with it's rock walls and mosaic windows.  It reminded me of the book the Secret Garden.

If walking isn't your style then getting a tour on this buggy may be just the thing! 

It was a great way to spend an afternoon alone with my oldest son.  As I oohed and aahhed over the scenary he chatted away.  What a wonderful memory we shared.


Saturday, June 25, 2011

Sunday Scripture

"To what shall we liken the kingdom of God?  Or with what parable shall we picture it?
It is like a mustard seed which, when it is sown on the ground, is smaller than all the seeds on earth;
but when it is sown, it grows up and becomes greater than all herbs, and shoots out large branches, so that the birds of the air may nest under its shade."
Mark 4:30-32

Friday, June 24, 2011

A Trio of Blankies

I had the joy of reconnecting with a high school friend via Facebook recently. That's my favorite part about FB! It's been a great tool to keep in touch with people who live far from me. I wanted to make some blankets for her 10-month old son who had outgrown his. I used Anneliese's tutorial from Aesthetic Nest to make these super soft and cuddly blankets.

Large Blanket
I purchased the ultra cuddle fabric from Joann's and cut them about 34x48" and so the finished size with the binding was about 38x52" (uses exactly 5 yds of binding.)  I am hoping this will be a good size size since a crib mattress is 28x52". Since all my boys are out of the crib figuring out the "right size" caused a bit of anxiety!!  Making the lovey was easier; cutting each piece 14x14" (to allow for enough pattern to be shown.)  A smaller version of the blankie is great for taking anywhere: the car, the store, you get the idea.

The corners of the blankie's could be delightful for rubbing under the nose (my guys loved to do that with their thumbs in their mouth:)

Corner of Lovey
I also made a lighter weight blankie which I envisioned for those nights when the air conditioning is blowing.  I simply serged the edges of a trimmed 1 1/4 yds of fabric.  Who doesn't love knit?  It's so soft against the skin and lays so nicely to the contours of the body.  It's all rolled up and tied with a bow! 

A trio of blankies all ready for snuggling under.

Have a nice weekend!!

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

my new friend


 Somehow I can't help myself from buying beautiful plants whenever I am in a nursery.  Some people pick up stray animals; I have a tendency to pick up stray plants!!!  This lovely bromeliad managed to find itself into my cart with the idea it would be the perfect addition to my table. 

Since I knew little about the plant (I didn't even know it's name) my hubby quickly looked it up on his phone.  It has tiny yellow flowers and can you see the resemblance to the pineapple?  Yep, same family.  What's neat is that you water it through the leaves.  Pretty cool, I think.  Also, it's very adaptable, which is a good thing for me:)


I've got sort of a Hawaiian feel to my breakfast room.  I've never been to the islands but I think I'd really enjoy all of the bright flowers, ocean views and sandy beaches.  Would anyone like to join me??  He he!

Today I am content to be heading off to the pool with my boys (one can still dream right?)


Sunday, June 19, 2011

Happy Father's Day!

Happy Father's Day from our family to yours!  

Today I am unable to be with my own daddy because I live too far away but I was able to talk to him yesterday and wish him a very Happy Father's Day.  My dad is such a family man and a great father to all 5 of his grown children.  He has such a funny sense of humor who loves to travel.  As kids we were thrilled to pack up our camper and stay at a campground nearly every summer weekend.  They were wonderful family times I'll never forget. 

I am so thankful to God for him and for my wonderful husband and father-in-law.  All great men in my life!!!

I pray God's blessings on all the father's today.

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Sunday Scripture

My boys fishing.

Since we returned home from JUMP! kids camp my boys have been fishing in the small pond (newly stocked) in the back of our house.  My dad would be so proud!  He is an avid fisherman and has taken my boys fishing a number of times.  Camping and fishing were things my dad did with us kids growing up.  Unfortunately, I never took a liking to fishing.  But, the camping I loved.

The Big Catch

The tiny sunfish and bass my boys have been catching are so eager to bite.  Just as soon as the bait  hits the water a fish nibbles!  No waiting for them!  Back into the water the squirmy fish goes.

JUMP 2011
All of this has me thinking about Jesus and the 4 fishermen He called to be his disciples: brothers Simon and Andrew then Zebedee and John.  I imagine these men were strong, courageous and patient men.  They had to endure lots of bad weather and have the strength to pull in nets heavy with wiggly fish.  But, there would have been times when the fishing wasn't good and they needed the patience and perseverance to wait it out. 

So it is with us, we need strength to fight the good fight of faith, courage to take a stand for what's right or reach out to that person no one else will, and perseverance to finish the race that is set before us.

We had over 4000 kids raise their hands to receive Jesus; not a bad day of fishing!

"Follow me, and I will make you fishers of men."
Matthew 4:19


Saturday, June 11, 2011


I am preparing to take my boys to JUMP!, a VBS in St. Louis.  This will be our 7th year and we all just love it!  Each year it gets bigger:  when we started in 2004, 700 kids came and this year they are expecting over 4000 kiddos!!!  They have approximately 1000 volunteers helping out.  It is really exciting stuff and a blessing to be a part of something so big touching children's lives.

Each age group is given a different colored shirt (part of keeping everyone organized!) and the volunteers have their own shirts; it really is a rainbow of colors when we are together!  The sky is the limit as to what you do with it (besides wear it!!)  It's so much fun to see everyone's creativity: beads, embroidery, applique, lace, etc.   I of course waited until the last day to do something with my shirt!! 

I pulled these fabric swatches out of my stash.   Fabric flowers are what I had in mind, featured on Sew Much Ado.

The fabric flowers were very easy to do.  I used 1" strips and joined 2 strips together to make the largest flower. 

I also added some leaves to the flowers using Heat and Bond.  These flowers can also be attached to hair pins, head bands or whatever suits you!  It's a great way to coordinate any outfit.  I did attach some fabric flowers to hairclips, too.  I am in love with all of the flowers in fashion right now.  It's a really feminine touch.

I am off to pack!  Blessings to you all dear friends!!

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Pretty Pincusion

I made a new pincushion for my sewing room!  It was a fairly quick project once I figured out how much to enlarge the pattern.  Plus, it was a great way to use up small scraps.

This is the book where I got the pattern  . . .

My mom had given me this black pincushion years ago that she bought at a craft sale in Minnesota. 

I use it all the time and really, really like it!  What's great about it is it has a thread catcher and it hangs over the side of the table. But, I was continually moving it between my serger, sewing machine and ironing board and never knowing where I left it!  There should be less hunting around with 2 now!


Wednesday, June 8, 2011

I Won!!

Kelsey from Vanilla Joy was offering a fabric giveaway of this bright blue and tangerine fabric.

Marine by Dan Stiles
And I won it!!  Yippee!!  I really like it's bright colors and it seems perfect for a toddler boy quilt.  Kelsey made a strip quilt out of her fabric.  You can see it here.  She also offers some great tips for anyone who is a beginning quilter.  And her tutorial is here.  I know I will be referring to it when I get to that point!

I have learned so much from other bloggers and always come away so inspired.  Here's a big thank you to all of you!!


Monday, June 6, 2011

Let's Play Ball!

My little monkey got his cast off finally!!  Yippee!!!!

Hubby was pretty happy about that since now he could teach him how to swing a bat.

Watching him play t-ball with full mobility in his arm was a delight.  And watching him splash away in the pool.  Oh happy day!! 

Hope you have a super day doing something you love!!

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Sunday Scripture

"In God I have put my trust:
I will not be afraid what man can do to me.
Thy vows are upon me, O God:
I will render praises unto You.
For You have delivered my soul from death:
Have You not kept my feet from falling,
that I may walk before God in the light of the living?"

Psalm 56 11-13

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Plenty O' Petunias

A few weeks ago I promised you pictures of flowers I was putting around my house. Sorry it took so long!! A week of bad storms and redoing our landscaping delayed me!!!

So here they are,

Mounding Petunias with Spike
I have a lot of concrete off my breakfast room and these pots filled with pretty purple petunias helps soften it up.  I like the spike in the center to give it some height.  Plus, it is pretty to watch blowing in the breeze.:)    I have a matching pot on the other side of our patio door.

Pots can be an investment but I was happy to find these fairly large black ones at Lowe's for about $10.  Come fall it will be easy to change out the petunias for mums.

This is a spreading Petunia that I bought in a basket but just removed the hangers.  It sits on the edge of my patio.  It  is a big splash of color!!

Spreading Petunia

Coming around to the front of my house is this basket of petunias with blue lobelia in the center. 

Next to my front door I have another pot with you guessed it, more petunias.  But white this time!!  I like how it brightens up the entryway.  Petunia's are a full sun plant but it is doing just fine on my porch where it only gets morning sun.  I love how each flower is pointed towards the sun!

Lastly, this is my fuschia plant sitting on my front porch.  It's kind of suffering and I'm not sure why.  Too much sun maybe?

I had a few petununia's left over that I planted in our front garden bed.  I was surprised to find them all gone, except one yesterday!  There was nothing left of them, not even the roots!  A bunny had a late night snack?  I am so grateful the potted petunia's were left unharmed!!

So there you have it - plenty o' petunias!  Happy Gardening everyone!

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

This Place is A Zoo

This buttery yellow flannel I chose for a newborn boy has baby zoo animals with phrases such as "giggly giraffes,"  "happy hippos,"  "mischievous monkeys" and my favorite, "this place is a zoo!"

Baby Gift Ensemble:  Appliqued Onesie, Burp Cloths, Receiving Blanket, Ribbon Blanket
What an accurate statement that is with children!  They each have their own personalities, their own characteristics and my the combination can be just like a zoo!!!

Ribbon Blanket
As long as it's one, big happy zoo I'm okay with it!

Happy June 1st!!