Wings As Eagles: December 2007

Thursday, December 27, 2007

What a day! :)

Right now I'm sitting on the floor, wrapped up in blanket with my computer on my lap watching a movie with my sisters. Today was hectic; we had all of our family of 18 over at our house this evening at the sorta-kinda last minute.

But it was a wonderful evening and tomorrow should be another fun-filled day with more family memories to be made,

BTW, we had our annual pitch game that we have every year around this time last night and it was a blast! I'll share more later, but for now I'm going to lay down and try to get rid of the headache I've had for the last hour. :)

Thursday, December 20, 2007

What am I doing???

The last few days I have been living, breathing and sleeping quilting, literally. I'm working on a quilt for a customer for Christmas and I'm in just a little bit of a time crunch to get it done.

See here for details.

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Sunday School Christmas

Last Sunday the kids in my Sunday School class presented the Christmas program we have been working on the last couple of months. They sang several Christmas songs and had such a joyous time preparing for it.


some of the kiddos in my class



Christmas program on Sunday morning


You can listen to the soundtrack here:

video

Here are also some of my Christmas decorations in my classroom at church. The large nativity scene I ordered from Oriental Trading and just love it! It is so cute and very large!

The road to Bethleham on the door was fun to create also. It shows the wise men and shepherds all making their way to see the newborn King. I was struggling to find just the right kind of Bible characters when I recalled that I have an embroidery collection of the Nativity.

Instead of stitching the designs, I converted them into graphics and printed them out. I cut out around them and pasted them on the classroom door. It was perfect!!

Kids Club - Godly Character Traits

Our theme this year for Kids Club at church was Godly character traits. Last Wednesday was our last day for 2007 and our end of the year pizza party.

The kids did a wonderful job memorizing verses. The challenge was to build a brick wall and fill up the entire poster with bricks with each verse they memorized. The photo below shows one of the two walls the kids were trying to build with bricks.

This is the only photo I have considering that our walls and posters have been taped up and taken down several times. The tape was just not going to hold much longer!


the now-falling-down brick walls



I wrote names and verses on the bricks.






pizza party with everyone!




Character trait posters - at least the ones still hanging on the wall!

Chicago trip part 2

We spent two days learning all kinds of things regarding some of the newest products from Bernina and some new sewing techniques! It was a great two days for making new friends, picking up some creative ideas and a fun chance to visit with other quilters!

Because a snow storm was headed our way, we ended up leaving Aurora Friday night at 10 pm after we finished with the day's classes. We arrived in Ames about 3:30 am and were so glad to be there. We ended up snowed in all day Saturday and then finally started the last stretch of the journey home on Sunday.

It was a wonderful and exciting trip!!


Bernina training




driving at night to Ames - scary, huh??




We drove through a couple hours of this weather on Sunday.




Our hotel room which was very nice!

Friday, December 14, 2007

Snow...Snow...Snow

The snow started falling about noon today and kept coming until about 6 pm this evening! And what a beautiful, soft, peaceful snow it is! So far no wind, no bitter cold temps and no ice. That is the perfect kind of snow.

I spent this morning with Grandma and I have to say it wasn't too fun driving home in the falling snow around 1:30. The snow was falling fast and covering the air and roads and I was more than glad to be tucked inside the house with my computer!

Take a peek at our beautiful snowfall:


driving home from Grandma's house



falling snow



beautiful snowfall!



look up and all you see is snowflakes


Lady wanting inside the house


Poor Skittles...she wasn't too thrilled about going
out in the snow, especially since she's an indoor cat!
The snow is about as deep as she is tall!
Poor thing...she just about sunk down in the feathery whiteness!






Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Chicago trip part 1

The end of November/first of December I traveled to Chicago for a Bernina teacher's reunion. There were national quilting teachers there who invited others to attend. I was one of those others.

Bernina's headquarters is in Aurora, IL. They have a wonderful building and I have been there before, but it was fun to go back again. And as always I enjoy anything relating to quilting and embroidery!

My friend Elsie and I started out early Tuesday morning and planned to travel to Ames, Iowa where she has family and spend the night there. We made really good time and arrived there early evening.


still in Kansas - bright & sunny!


Topeka, KS - still bright and sunny!

I made the terrible mistake of not paying attention to what the weather would be like further north. You would think I would remember how much colder it is there than here. Well, I wasn't thinking very clearly when I packed my clothes because I brought long sleeve jackets, but only short sleeves tops to go underneath.
That would never work! I get way to cold in just that with the kind of freezing weather we were surrounded by. We stopped at Wal-Mart in Iowa and I was able to actually find a couple long sleeve turtle necks that matched a couple jackets I had with me.

And did I even think to bring a coat?? Nope! We were not into full blown winter in Kansas yet, but Iowa and Illonois were! The further north we traveled, the temp. began to fall more and more.


getting close to Ames, Iowa


more and more traffic



cold Iowa!


beautiful Iowa sunset



at dusk, the sky turned into beautiful pink & purple


After staying the night in Ames, we were back on the road headed for Aurora on Wednesday. And it didn't get any warmer, but at least inside the car it was toasty warm. And I had my computer with Internet access, so I was completely satisfied!


getting closer

more to come......


More bytes of data

With all the Internet and computer work I do, I have been needing a new computer, but hesitated to buy another one, not knowing quite sure what I wanted to do.

I have always had a laptop because I needed something to take with me to quilting classes, business trips and vacations. One of the advantages of owning an online business is that it can go with you wherever you go.

The Fujitsu laptop I've had for almost 3 years is beginning to show its old age and the poor thing has been dropped, lugged everywhere, bumped into, updated and who knows what else. I've not had an ounce of trouble with it and it has done what I needed it to do. But it's time to update, because if something happened to it; let's just say I would be in the complete and total depths of despair!!! (Krissa, recognize that phrase????)

I've been looking online at computers, checking prices especially now since the holiday season usually offers some pretty good deals. I decided to go with a Dell desktop computer to keep downstairs in my office/sewing room to keep all my business data on and everything else I have.

So far I have loved it, but have spent the last couple of days transferring all my data from my old laptop to my new desktop. Plus I had to install a firewall card for uploading from my video camera, wireless networking port for connecting to our home network and all the extra stuff.

I really love doing it as I love doing anything on computers, but it does take time. I'm now at the point that I am doing half of my business work on the desktop and half on the laptop. The only dilemma I now have is that I would like to have all the info on my desktop available and constantly updated to my laptop....I'm still investigating the best way to make that happen.

I have them networked together here at home so I can access all the computers on our network from any computer, but when I'm away from home, I don't have that option unless I have an Internet network worked out or continue to update my portable hard drive as I have been doing in the past.

Oh.....the difficulties keeping up with technology......but it's worth every bit of it! Although yesterday when I was getting cables sorted into multiple ports, network cards installed and the printer and fax to working, it was a little frustrating! Getting all the devices talking to each other can be a nightmare!

Ice...Ice...Ice

Yesterday and today there is snow and ice covering the ground and the trees! It look so beautiful and Christmasy. Thankfully we haven't lost our power as we did last year with so much ice and snow.



looking out the front door

looking out the back door

ice covered tree

Krissa's Home!!!

Krissa showed up at our front door Sunday evening. Dad was a little - ok, not a little, a whole lot - shocked when he opened the door. They have had multiple episodes of whooping cough on campus and moved finals up a week and let all the students leave for Christmas break a week early.

And the silly girl didn't tell us. She just showed up! Talk about us being surprised!!! :)

The....um....problem was.....I still had her room filled up to the brim with my sewing stuff! So I hurridly moved everything out of her room....

....into my already full inventory room/Dad's office.....

......more being piled up in my inventory room/Dad's office.....

......and into the family room area of my large sewing room.....

......and into my room - this is the little bitty path I have between my bed and boxes to get into my room!

But Krissa's room was at least clean!

Monday, December 10, 2007

Wouldn't you?

Wouldn't you be surprised and shocked if someone in your family showed up at your front door one week earlier than supposed to, especially when that person lives over 20 hours a way and had commitments and schedules that that person cannot change??

I was yesterday.

And I'm still in shock, but an excited shock today!

Let's just say that this happened a little sooner than planned! :)

I've got to get to class, but won't keep you in suspense too much little longer! :)

Sunday, December 9, 2007

Chocolate goodies!

Yesterday evening I spent a couple hours baking some yummy Christmas candy with the most important ingredient - CHOCOLATE!!! The air was full of snow and ice outside, so the kitchen was the perfect place to be with Christmas music playing!

Can't you just smell some of these yummies?!?!?!

got to have all the right stuff!
peanut clusters!
what to put in the chocolate??
mixing in peanuts

The Fridge - it was cold enough in the
garage for the chocolate to set!
Skittles was right in the kitchen with me,
sleeping on the kitchen chair under the table!

Saturday, December 8, 2007

Together again soon

It has just been Dad and myself this week since I returned from Chicago (which I have yet to write about my trip...I will!).

Jena has been in Guatemala for over a week on a missions trip. She is on her way home today. She just called and their plane landed in Houston....and then she'll be flying in to Wichita by 4 pm this evening. And home in another 3-4 hours.

Krissa only has one more week of school - the dreaded week of finals, but only one more week. Her last day is Thursday and then she'll be driving for about 20 hours to reach western Kansas. She is so ready to be home, away from classes and a terrifically hectic schedule.

Soon our family will be together again! I'm looking forward to it! :)

On the menu today

Today is a cold, wintery day with clouds in the sky and looking like it could snow at any moment. I had several alteration/clothing fitting appointments in Dodge this morning, but decided with the icy roads to cancel and stay home. It's the perfect day to bake or cook anyway!

For some reason this week I have been spending a lot of time in the kitchen this week. I always spend some time in the kitchen everyday fixing meals, but this week I've been in here more than just meal time. And you guessed it - that's where I am right at the moment. I'm digitizing an embroidery design while waiting for the meat to brown.

Tuesday I baked brownies and had the big chex mix fiasco. Then Thursday evening was our local quilt guild meeting and the officers are responsible for cooking the soup supper. As part of the officer team, I baked four dozen bread rolls and cooked chicken for chicken noodle soup to put in the crock pot for that evening.

As I was digging around in the freezer for chicken, I also found some steak hidden deep inside that still had Mom's handwriting on it. It never fails; I think I have gone through our two freezers downstairs several times, and I still find food stored away I didn't know was there.

Mom was so resourceful and excellent about buying things on sale and saving them for future use. Did you know that it was only this summer that I've had to buy toilet paper since the year 2000? Mom had enough toilet paper stored in this house for seven years! Yes, I'm not kidding; seven years!

Anyway, back on subject - the steaks have been in the freezer for quite a while, so I cut up and cooked about half of the meat on Thursday and made a large crock pot full of beef stew yesterday. It smelled wonderful and was perfect for a cold day! Even the DSL delivery person who brought some boxes yesterday could smell it as he stepped inside the front door.

And for dinner today, I have the remainder of the steak chopped up and cooking in the crock pot for Baked Steak Deluxe. Throw the meat, mushroom soup, a few spices and some water in the crock pot, cook for a couple hours, cook some rice right before mealtime and dinner is ready! Yummy!

Then my plan for this afternoon is to bake some Christmas candy, like peanut clusters, chocolate haystacks, chocolate carmel turtles and maybe even some fudge. It already smells so good in the house and it's only going to smell better!!! :)

Friday, December 7, 2007

The Cheerio Mess

This time I can't blame my wonderful little trouble-maker, Skittles, for the mess on the kitchen floor the other day. I have no one to blame but myself.

Part of the problem was that I was trying to do too many things at one time. But after all, I can't just do one thing at a time!!! :)

Actually I was making chex mix, baking brownies, doing laundry and researching computers on the Internet when the mess happened. And I know, just know, you are wondering how in the world can you do all those things at the same time? Well, thank you for asking!

It's actually very easy. Start the laundry in the washer, start heating the oven for brownies, start measuring ingredients for chex mix and leave my laptop on the kitchen table to glance at in between dumping chex cereal and peanuts in the mixing bowl. Oh, and the laptop also serves as the source for Christmas music.

When I have this many things going on, the goal is to keep up with each thing when waiting for the other task to be complete. So, I can be mixing the batch of brownies while a batch of chex mix is cooking while the laundry is washing and waiting for my computer to go to the next webpage.

While the brownies are cooking, I start another batch of chex mix in the microwave while I'm putting clothes in the dryer. Glancing at my computer and surfing the net are just for those times, that my eyes don't have to be somewhere else! Get the idea?!

Can you perhaps see how the box of cheerios happened to be dumped on the floor?

I was mixing together a second batch of chex mix (I needed some for us and also some for kid's club at church) as I had a pan full cooking in the microwave. All of a sudden the box of cheerios slipped from my fingers and of course landed on the floor topside down.

At the same time, I could smell something burning in the direction of the microwave...the chex mix! With the pan I was using, I had to take the out turn-around-thing (yeah, I know, real technical, but you know what I'm talking about!) that lets the food circulate as it's cooking to prevent hot spots. Therefore, I can only microwave it for about 30 seconds before I have to stir the mix.

Well, let's just say that it had been over 30 seconds.

As I was pulling the mix out of the microwave, in walks Dad. He had been carrying wood onto the porch and I was hoping to get the burnt cereal out of the microwave and scattered cheerios off the floor before he came in.

Needless to say, that didn't happen.

And I am standing in the middle of the kitchen floor covered with cheerios, a pan in one hand with smoke curling upward (ok, maybe just a tiny trail) and a spoon in the other hand, getting ready to dump some mix in the trash all the while enjoying the wonderful smell of burning cereal!

If only I could have found a way to have a camera in my hand to snap Dad's expression on his face!

Monday, December 3, 2007

Getting caught up on things...

Well, I've been busy today on the computer, shipping out orders over the last few days and getting caught up on other business details. I've been in Chicago for the past week attending a Bernina Teacher's Reunion and had a wonderful time, but now it's catch-up time.

Actually I can't say that I've actually been in Chicago that whole time, maybe only about 2 days. We planned for two days driving up and two days driving home and then being in Chicago for two days. I have lots of photos and interesting stories to tell, including traveling adventures, sewing fun, driving at night and being caught in a snow/ice storm.

But right now, this is part of the pile of stuff I've been working through today. I made some progress considering that the table was piled much higher and more stuff was stashed underneath that needed to be unboxed and put away. And that does not even begin to show my pile of custom sewing and embroidery that needs to be done in the next week.....I think I've got plenty to do!