Friday, December 11, 2009

Christmas Stockings-Sew &Tell 12/11/09

Here is a picture of what I have been working on this week. I still have five more stockings to make and embroider for a couple of customers!

We love the tradition of stocking stuffers--almost more than the "big" gifts! Personalized stockings really dress up the mantel.

Be sure to head over to Amylouwho and see what other folks are working on at Sew & Tell!

Monday, November 16, 2009

Not for the Squeamish

This blog shows how I spend my time away from work: family, crafting and deal shopping.

The link below shows what I spend most of my days doing. WARNING! Not for those with a weak stomach.

I get to help gifted surgeons in sight-restoration surgery.

What do you think? :-)

Friday, November 6, 2009

Gift Basket Giveaway!

Head over to Barb Sackel's new blog to find out how to win one of these beautiful baskets. A basket contains a 40 piece fat quarter pack from Moda, a ruler, quilting gloves, fancy scissors and more. And of course, chocolate!!!

Wouldn't this be a great gift for yourself or a quilter/sewer you love!

The Fun Theory

Friday, October 30, 2009

I Got a Treat!

Yesterday a surprise came in the mail. My sweet husband pre-ordered this wonderful cookbook for my birthday. Only, when the book came, he couldn't wait for my birthday (December). So, I got a surprise!

I read through the entire book last night. It is a beautiful book. If you are not familiar with Ree Drummond, you have to immediately go to The Pioneer Woman. Don't read any further--go immediately to her blog!

Ree is a witty writer and lives what looks like an idyllic life. I would love to visit her at the ranch and just hang out. And her recipes! I can't wait to start cooking--this is not going to be good for my diet!

Check out the book here or get it at your local bookstore. It would be an awesome Christmas gift.

Sew and Tell 10/30

I took a break the past couple of weeks from my Lightning Strikes Quilt. My mother wants to give a quilt to two of her sisters this Christmas. We had lots of scraps and decided to make this quilt from a pattern from Atkinson Designs. It is called Lucky Stars.

This pattern is easy and fun to make. It is also very forgiving! My quilt guild make about 30 of these quilts for a local charity. It looks great scrappy and it is a great way to use up lots of scraps!

I quilted this quilt in just a couple of hours on my regular domestic machine. The binding is also scrappy. I have never made a scrappy binding, but I really like it. We have the other quilt top ready to go and I hope to get it quilted this week. This quilt really could be make in a weekend.

What are you creating this week?

To see what other folks are working on, be sure to visit amylouwho and check out Sew and Tell!

Friday, October 23, 2009

I Got All This for $19.33!

Can you believe I got all this for $19.33!

Be sure to print your Nature Valley Coupons from my sidebar!

Crystal over at Money Saving Mom wrote about the great Nature Valley Deals going on at Kroger this week. I still had 8 of the great Nature Valley printable coupons for $1.60/1 on Granola Nut Clusters. I also had a bunch of $1 coupons. Kroger is running the nut clusters for 4/$10 and when you buy 4 you get an additional $4 off. That makes each bag of clusters $1.50 so I actually got 8 for free plus overage! I also had several e-coupons loaded on my Kroger card. I got a total of 16 bags! You can read all the details on how to get this deal HERE.

I also got the tuna and mashed potatoes for free with coupons. The Mtn. Dew was on sale for $1.25 and I had coupons that made them $0.75 each. The Tabasco was also free by combining printable coupon with an e-coupon. The Tyson chicken was on sale for $1.99/lb and that is a great price for chicken tenderloins.

I really didn't need to shop, but taking advantage of these kinds of sales is what keeps my overall food budget low.

To see how other folks did this week be sure to visit these great blogs:

Money Saving Mom--Super Savings Saturday

Southern Savers--Friday Finals

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Tara Quilt Show

Friday I went to the Tara Quilt Guild Quilt Show. Below I have a gallery of my favorite quilts. It was a nice show and help to inspire me to continue trying to finish up some of my projects.

This first quilt is by my friend Loreli. She won these block a couple of years ago at a guild meeting. I love the border she put on the quilt. It features pieced hearts and an applique of vine and flowers. I voted for this quilt for the Viewer's Choice Award.

I really like the monochromatic theme in this quilt.

I just helped my mother make two of these quilts for her sisters for Christmas. I have one completed and one I am about to quilt. This quilt is a pattern called Lucky Stars by Atkinson Designs. It is a great pattern that goes together quickly and is very forgiving.

This quilt is by Jeanne Lowery, the owner of Quilts and Fixins in Jonesboro, Ga. This quilt was a row-by-row monthly club quilt last fall.

This quilt is a pattern called Lightning Strikes. I am currently working on my own Lightning Strikes quilt. You can see mine HERE.

I really like the jewel tones in this quilt. Love the look of puzzle pieces.

One day I want to make a house quilt. There is a great pattern I discovered over at Anyone Can Quilt (one of my favorite blogs) when Sara participated in a block exchange. See the pattern HERE at Frieda's Hive.

This quilt is a Halloween quilt by Margaret Shlumper. Margaret teaches a monthly mystery quilt class at Quilts and Fixins.

The back of Margaret's Halloween quilt has a spooky (or sexy) surprise!

Hope these pictures inspire you to create something wonderful!

Publix 10/18/09

I haven't post any of my shopping trips lately. I have been shopping and I have been using coupons for the most part, but I just haven't been motivated to make a post. I have temporarily raised my grocery budget to a whopping $400/month! I haven't been spending all of that, but it has given me the freedom to buy all the deals I want.

Today I went to Publix and my savings were so great that I had to post a picture. I spent a total OOP of $46 and saved $109! My best deals included peanut butter for $0.23, syrup for $0.75 and toothpaste for free!

To see how other folks did this week, head over and visit these great blogs:

Publix Super Savers at Fiddledeedee

Friday Finals at Southern Savers

Super Savings Saturday at Money Saving Mom

Have a great week!

Menu Plan Monday 10/19/09

It has been a while since I have participated in MPM, but I need to be more organized and use up some of my freezer and pantry stockpile. I actually have planned my menu for the next two weeks.

bagels/cream cheese
granola bars


Pork Fried Rice
Meatloaf/mashed potatoes/steamed broccoli
Fettuccini Alfredo/salad
Swiss Steak/noodles/steamed veggie
Vegetable Beef Soup
Slow-cooker Beef Stew/rice/steamed veggie
Oven-baked chicken/potatoes/steamed veggie
Homemade Pizza
Leftovers about 3 nights
Daughter's Birthday
Emeril's Sausage Pot (such a great fall recipe)
Baked Beans
Grilled corn-on-the cob
Velveeta cheese dip
Mandarin Orange Cake
Chocolate Cake
Ice cream

To see other great menu ideas, head over to Menu Plan Monday at I'm and Organizing Junkie!

Have a great week!

Friday, October 16, 2009

Sorry I dropped off the face of the earth...

My apologies to my vast readership for my lack of blogging. Life is good, but it has been very busy. I hope to get back to more regular posting very soon. In the meantime, let me recommend a few really great blogs:

Anna Maria Horner

Heather Bailey

Valori Wells

Hooked on Houses

Hooked on Houses post about Anna Maria Horner's kitchen


By the way, for the anonymous reader (Nancy) who left a comment on my Lightning Strikes Quilt--the pattern came from Australian Patchwork and Quilting magazine and the pattern is by Chris Timmons. It was an issue from several years ago, but I believe you can purchase the pattern.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Menu Plan Monday 9/28/09

I've gone without menu plans for the past couple of weeks and have gone off track of the budget. So I'm trying to get back to menu planning.

Here is my "loose" plan for the week:

bagels/cream cheese
Toaster Strudels
granola bars

veggie burgers
vegetable soup

Bacon, tomato & cheddar frittata

Baked chicken, steamed vegetables, macaroni & cheese

Baked Potatoes, assorted toppings

Meatloaf, mashed potatoes, steamed veggies

Barbecue chicken, Pasta-Roni, Steamed veggie

Bacon, eggs, grits, toast, fruit


Have a great week!

Be sure to visit Menu Plan Monday over at I'm an Organizing Junkie.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Lightning Strikes Quilt Update

I just wanted to post a quick update on my Lightning Strikes quilt. I haven't been able to work on it as much lately because of my busy work schedule. But, this is a rainy weekend and the family went to Japanfest for the day so I was able to have some sewing time.

This first picture is where I left off in July at my last post:

Here is where I stopped today:

I still have about half the rows to get together, but I am getting there. It is really fun to see the pattern emerging!

Here are some more pictures of the fabric swatches, pattern and how I keep the different widths organized.

This is my inspiration fabric:

I hope to get a little more done today and that will probably be it for this weekend. I have a wedding to attend tomorrow!

Go HERE to see my post from July.

To see more great quilts, head over to Park City Girl and check out the Quilt Festival!

Also, check out Sew and Tell over at amylouwho!

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Menu Plan Monday 9/7/09

Here is my "loose" plan for the week:

bagels/cream cheese
granola bars



Hot dogs, slaw, baked beans
Pork chops, baked potato,steamed veggie
Chicken stew, rise, salad
Chicken Caesar wraps
Meatloaf, mashed potatoes, steamed veggie
Veggie burgers, oven Parmesan chips, fruit
Leftovers or Breakfast for dinner

Have a great week!

Be sure to visit Menu Plan Monday over at I'm an Organizing Junkie.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Just for Laughs

I know it is wrong, but I can't help but laugh. And don't you just love how she holds on to her watering pitcher the whole time!

Friday, August 28, 2009

This Week's Shopping Trips

I found some really good deals this week.

Picture #1 is from my Kroger shopping trip. I did two separate transactions. Transaction #1 was 5 boxes of Nature Valley granola bars and 5 boxes of Betty Crocker fruit snacks. I had paper coupons for all items, and 4 e-coupons came out, then the $5 Mega Event credit. I paid $10.31 OOP including tax and received $7 in catalinas to use on future shopping trip.

Tranactions #2 at Kroger was for 21 items. After coupons, e-coupons, Mega Event credit and my $7 in catalinas, I paid $2.92 OOP including tax! So, at Kroger, I spend a total of $13.23 OOP for 31 items! Yay!

The second picture is my Publix trip. I spent a total of about $8 OOP--can't find my receipt!

I also made a trip to Aldi's for mostly produce and milk/eggs.

I increased by grocery budget to $200 for the last two weeks. I only spent about $150, so that is what I am budgeting for the next two weeks. I have started Weight Watchers, so I am allowing myself to spend more on groceries--extra produce and special low cal snack items.

To see how other folks did this week check out the following posts:

Friday Finals at Southern Savers

Super Savings Saturday at Money Saving Mom

Friday, August 21, 2009

Moda Bake Shop

I just spent too much time this morning looking at all the great projects at the Moda Bake Shop. I just started working on this great Grocery Bag Dispenser. It looks so cute and it is a really quick project. I think I will be making a few of these for gifts.

Here is a look at my fabrics:

I will post an update when I finish the bag, but, right now, I have to stop run some errands...

Meantime, check out some of the other great projects over at the Moda Bake Shop like these:

Binder Cover

Tote Bag
Drawstring Beach Bag
Christmas Stockings
Fabric Lamp Shade (LOVE this!)

Plus lots more! Have fun!

I love free patterns and free is frugal. To see other frugal ideas head over to Life as Mom and check out Frugal Fridays.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Menu Plan Monday 8/17/09

I have decided to increase my food budget quite a bit right now. I just don't seem to be able to tolerate too much couponing--need a little break. We are also going to be trying to eat a little healthier. More fruit and veggies. Having said that, I really don't have a grocery trip planned, but I will likely stop at Aldi's at some point to get milk and pick up produce. If you have an Aldi's near you, I highly recommend trying it. Great prices without coupons and the produce always seems to be great. Our Aldi's has milk for $1.49 a gallon right now and large eggs for $0.69!

Here is my "loose" plan for the week:

bagels/cream cheese
granola bars

jello with fruit
carrot sticks

Beef roast in crock pot, veggies, slaw
Chicken Stew, rice, veggie
Fettuccine Alfredo, salad
Vegetable soup (using leftover roast-made in crockpot), cornbread., fruit
Hamburger steak, homemade mac and cheese, steamed veggie
BBQ ribs, mashed potatos, fried okra (free from sister's garden)

Have a great week!

Be sure to visit Menu Plan Monday over at I'm an Organizing Junkie.

Also head over to Dining with Debbie and participate in Crock Pot Wednesdays.

Sunday, August 9, 2009

One Month to Live

My church, Harvest Point, is in a series entitled "One Month to Live". What would you do differently if you knew you only had thirty days left. How would you live, love, work, give, sacrifice...

To hear the first two weeks in the series you can download the podcast at iTunes (search for HP Sermons) or HERE. The first week is available now and the second should be downloaded later today or tomorrow

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Random Thoughts

Today my family went to the movies. The big movie this weekend was G. I. Joe. My hubby "has been waiting 40 years" for this movie. Both kids wanted to see it as well. I am usually all in for the action/sci fi/adventure movies, but I am in a mood right now. This mood was not suited for such a fun movie.

We parted ways at the theater and I went, instead, to see Julie & Julia. I had seen the trailers, and I thought it looked cute. And since I have a blog that made it even more interesting. I didn't know that the movie would fit my mood so well. I don't know...I am introspective right now. The movie makes me think more about this blog. I don't have any real direction. I post about my shopping trips, family, craft projects, and pretty much any random subject. I think that this is okay, but it was not the original reason for the blog. I was to post about my stitching and quilting. I still do, on occasion, but work interferes with those projects, so I don't have much to post about...

Work. That is another subject. I recently took a 7 week leave of absence. Did I miss work? No. Do I mind being back at work? No. What does that mean? I feel numb when it comes to my job. I love some of the people I work with. I truly care about the people I work for. But, I don't feel appreciated by them and I am not inspired. Worst of all, I spend a minimum of two hours a day commuting.

At church, we are in a series entitled "One Month to Live". If you knew you only had thirty days to live, what would you do differently? How would you live, love, sacrifice, give, work? Every day we are e-mailed devotionals. These devotionals are how I am spending my quiet time everyday. I know this is the source of my mood.

It is interesting that Julie seems to go along with my mood. She seemed to be looking for a purpose. Looking to be inspired. The devotional today was about the parable of the talents. Matthew 25. Read and studied it many times. But, the perspective from my pastor was different in the devotional that I have thought about before. Basically he said playing it safe is wrong. We need to take some risks--let go and trust God.

Am I playing it safe? At work? In relationships? With this blog?

Or, am I being over dramatic?! ;-)

Friday, August 7, 2009

Tea Time

Today I am linking up to Julia over at Hooked On Houses for her weekly "Hooked On Fridays" round-up.

A few months back, one of the anesthesiologists I work with brought in a bunch different types of teas to share. He frequently goes to Big Lots and buys any teas he thinks would be interesting. He is a real advocate for drinking tea for its health benefits.

I loved this St. Dalfour Organic Lemon Tea. To sweeten it a little the doctor gave me some Agave nectar. Agave Nectar is very good for you and it a sweetener with a low glycemic index. It has a very light taste and the combination with tea is delicious.

Well, if you have ever shopped at Big Lots you know that if you see something you better buy all you want because the next time you look for the item they will be gone. I traveled around to at least 4 Big Lots in my general area and had no luck finding any more of this tea. Finally, I did an internet search and found that I could buy both the St. Dalfour tea and Agave Nectar on Amazon. I have been "hooked on" having a cup of tea every day--even though it is summer. I fix my tea and have a Bible devotional time. Very relaxing!

Be sure to visit Julia's Blog Hooked on Houses and the Hooked on Friday party.

Also, head over to Life as Mom and check out Frugal Fridays.

Monday, August 3, 2009

A Walk by the Lake

My husband and I have been trying to get more exercise. We have been walking quite a bit lately in our neighborhood. One recent evening we drove to a nearby church that has a small lake and walking trails. It was quite lovely and a nice change of scenery from our usual walk.

I could get used to this.....