Thursday, March 31, 2011

Oh my dear

My co-worker, Jim, aka “Big Jim”,  farms in Pleasant Hope, MO.  He has a tree on his property that has lots of scratch marks on it….as far up as 10 feet high….he thinks he may have a bear on his property.  He has set up a motion activated camera to try to get a pictures of the bear… far no bear pictures, but he did get a great picture of these two deer…..they look like twins.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Getting caught up

I’ve still been reading the book on simplifying, “Secrets of Simplicity”……more revelations here for me. 

Make a list of your top ten “tolerances”.  Things that distract you, waste your time, weigh you down, and have a negative effect on your life.

Then, imagine what it would be like to live in a tolerance-free zone.


Then, choose the item that seems the easiest to eliminate.

For me, I’ve been working on clearing out 2 “junk drawers” this week. It’s hard (for me)…..I have tossed out lots of papers that I no longer need, given away 2 extra calculators that were hiding in there….found lots of pens that I can use and have put those in my husband’s junk drawer…..his is MUCH better than mine!  Found 3 colors of nail polish and some lipsticks and lip balms, found some cool earrings that I had forgotten about…..really, for me, it’s the drawers where I stick small things when I’m in a hurry and trying to tidy things up…..I’m going to work hard at finding those things that are useful a proper home and getting rid of things that I KNOW I won’t use.  Yes, I have a complete list of 10 tolerances to start with…..some big, some small, but I know I will feel much better as I work through the list.


Monday morning we woke up to snow….just a little, but snow all the same.  I took a picture of Lonnie as he went outside EARLY that morning……

….poor guy, he’s petrified of storms and lightning and he thought the flash from my camera was lightning…..he ran back in the house and was shaking and panting and it took me a bit to reassure him that it was NOT storming outside….it was just the flash from my camera. (It has stormed several times this past week)

On my list of “tolerances” is getting the 3 garden rugs hung…..I think I know where they are going to go, but first I need to take them to a framer and have him design “some sort of something” for the back of them…..I would like them to hang flush against the wall, have some support, so they don’t sag AND be able to hang each of them with just 1 nail in the wall.  Dulcy has given me the name of someone, so I’m going to stop by there Saturday and see if he can work something out for me.

In the meantime, I’ve started working on my Redbud Runner that I designed and started in Florida.


I’m excited about this, because I hope to use up a lot of my brown and gray recycled stash for the tree rings and overdye a lot of my light colors to make the background on this rug……I guess you could say I am planning on this being a big “stash buster” runner.  The thought of using things up is very appealing to me right now…..I just feel overburdened by lots of “stuff”!

I took a few pictures tonight to give you an idea of just how large this runner is….

I think it is about 8 feet long….this may well be one of the largest rugs for me to date.

This spring it warmed up really early and everything bloomed out….daffodils, Bradford pears, forsythias, star magnolias……EVERYTHING… it’s cold and damp again…..made ham and beans and cornbread tonight….perfect for a damp chilly evening.  Kenny had checked out a cookbook at the library a few weeks ago,  “In the Kennedy Kitchen”.  He was born the year Kennedy was assassinated, so he has always been fascinated with the Kennedy family. This is one of those cookbooks where everything sounds MARVELOUS, but not over the top…most of the ingredients actually sound like something you could find in your neighborhood grocery…..we now own a copy, yes, it’s that good!

Tonight I made the cornbread from the cookbook….it turned out really well.  Okay, it turned out really well considering I had mixed up all the dry ingredients from the recipe and then Kenny said…..”why don’t you use buttermilk instead of just milk”……so I went to the store and got buttermilk and when I returned home, I saw the little side note about the buttermilk…..if using buttermilk instead of milk….change the baking powder to 2tsp instead of 4tsp and add baking soda……well, I had already added the 4tsp of baking powder, so I just used part buttermilk and part milk and left out the baking soda… tasted good, but the middle puffed way up and it cracked and it just looked a mess.  Oh well, perfection is overrated!


Blessed are the flexible, for they shall not be bent  out of shape.

Sunday, March 27, 2011

I’m back

No, I haven’t been spending all my time staring out the window contemplating my life…….that would be Cleopatra and Lonnie watching for squirrels, or walkers, or other dogs….one of their favorite pastimes.

I have FINALLY completed the 3rd garden rug!  Added in a touch of sparkle this morning with some metallic fabric….

Here are a few close-ups…. sparkly fabric….

Cording covered with wool…..

Wool tied in knots….

Proddy petals with knotted center…..

Proddy petals with rolled wool center….

Now, if this works correctly, you should be able to click on the pictures to see larger versions.  If you see dog hair on the rug, well, what can I say….when I put the rug on the floor to study it, invariably, one of the dogs will decide to lie down on it.  Will have to get out the lint roller before these go up on the wall!

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Now reading.....

I just started this last night and I think it is going to be of the questions was.....
"If you were given 20 million dollars and only had 10 years to live....what would you be doing?
Something to think about today.

Like I said, I'm only about 10 pages in, but liking it so far.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Candy store

I know I'll never read all of these, but when I go to the library I just can't resist!


I'm like a kid in a candy store! I've been this way since I learned to read.
Anyway, that's what I'm up to this evening.
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Monday, March 21, 2011

How sweet

are these?

(from “A Gift Wrapped Life”)

Perhaps make a few sachets with left-over linen, burlap or flour sack towels!


Oh yeah, that reminds me…..

for all you thrifty gals who can’t throw anything out….

deconstruct your burlap or linen when you have a little extra cut off the side of your rugs and use those linen and burlap strings to tie things with!

Friday, March 18, 2011

It’s all creative work

All of us are creative, but so many of us have stopped believing in our ability to create with ease, or even to express ourselves freely. Whether we paint or write poetry, plant a garden, take photographic images, design software, write music or run a business - it's all creative work. Indeed we are creating our very lives. So why do we often hesitate to express ourselves fully and create the lives we really want?

~ Cat Bennett

Sorry I’ve been away for a while…..trying to get myself in a good “head space”.  Working through my negatives with cardio, yoga and guided relaxation, so that I can get back to sharing the positives with ya’ll.  Don’t go getting all concerned about me….just work related stuff that has been dragging me down.


Saturday, March 12, 2011

Waking up

After what seems like an extraordinarily long winter, the garden is waking up.

This morning it was actually nice enough to go out bare-footed and try and snap a few pictures.  I didn’t realize how much I missed the feeling of grass underneath my feet!

One of the doves was picking over what was left at the bird-feeder.  Their coo-ing is one of the most relaxing sounds to me.


Daffodils are trying to bloom.


……and some are succeeding…..


Here is one of my favorite flowers……Lenten Rose…..

It’s head is always hanging down…….here I’ve propped it up.


I don’t know what this is, but it is getting buds and the stalks are covered with velvet fuzz…..hope it comes across as to how soft it is to touch.


Of course, leave it to Kenny to help spring along…..he has more plants started inside as well….

Today I’m hoping to get a little binding done on my rugs and get out there and shop for a new coffee maker!

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Real quick

Hooked with Sheri of Shabby Sheep last night along with a few other hookers……finished up this……

…..looks like I’ll be “binding” this  weekend!

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

I could move right in!

It’s rare that I come across pictures of a home where I feel like it’s ME…..well, this is one of them…..I love the quirky picture, the modern seating mixed with the big sheep pillow, the sleek glass table with the beautiful flowers on top, the rustic wooden bowl, the big stone, that over-the-top chandelier…..WOW!

Then there is this rustic table with the mix of modern chairs and that freaky artwork on the walls ……again….LOVE!

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Reverse hooking…..

a) celibacy

b) giving people money to practice abstinence

c) pulling out loops of hooking and then re-hooking them


Okay, I think you know the answer!

Yesterday, I reverse hooked the bottom half of the large leaf and all of the little striped grasses,

but I DID FINISH the garden rug

… still needs to be pressed and bound, but first I decided to use up the extra linen and hook two 9x13 pieces that I can use as gifts…


I think they would make nice casserole trivets.  Trying to use up my worms for these two projects.


Hope you are enjoying your weekend….it was cold and gloomy yesterday…perfect for hooking….today, just cold!

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Almost there

One side of the leaf is finished... Now on to the next side.

Cleo is hiding the big reveal.

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Location:S Valleyroad Ave,Springfield,United States

Close to a melt-down

Or at least I thought I was…….

my husband warned me…..

did I think it would happen to me…..

things like this just don’t happen to me…..

but it did this morning…..







However, after an hour of fiddling with it, it works!

Okay, no one should want coffee this bad in the mornings, but I realized that I DO!

There is a little toggle switch in the middle and I think it’s seen it’s better days……Lord knows I always keep flipping that switch to turn it on a lot! I got the bright idea that I would set it to “auto-brew”, but even THAT didn’t work! Finally I jiggled the switch while I was pressing on the back of it and it WORKED!

Looks like I’ll be going out and getting a new coffee maker this weekend……I definitely can’t go through this trauma on a work day!

Copyright All rights reserved by Karen Tjøstelsdatter


I keep saying that I’m going to finish that last garden rug…’s foggy and overcast today, so perhaps I’ll get with it today…..that would make me feel so much better….having that finished, and having all of them hung on the wall together.


Speaking of rugs, I was over at Lauren’s blog “Rugs and Pugs” and she was talking about her monthly TO-DO list.  One of her items was to delete an abundance of her e-mails from her in-box….I think she had about 4,000.


Copyright All rights reserved by duffer18hcp

Well, I had about 2,500 and while I was deleting I ran across these rug photos that  Debe McGuire had sent me back in 2007…..(yes, I keep e-mails for that long…..and those pictures went out of my inbox and into a special file called “hooking related”)….some things I just have a hard time parting with!

Here is part of her letter to me:

Here's an antique rug belonging to my hooking friend.  She doesn't know the origin or the age.   The edge is in "mock" braiding.  Three rows with a little "poof" pulled up in a zig-zag pattern all around the edge.  The backside of the rug is brighter. 

It does make you wonder if the people who hooked these primitive rugs were uneducated...  or what?  You can't "unlearn" what you already know.  And we already know things like balance, proportion, perspective.  We knew it before we started hooking.  Therefore to make a pattern like this is contrary to who we really are.  It becomes imitation, not originality.

Sure makes me think, though.

The rugs belong to her friend, Judy Kimbro.

I think that is the part of “old rugs” that I like the best….trying to imagine the hooker’s story, where they came from, what their life was like, what inspired them?  I also wonder what the colors in their rugs looked like when they hooked them and before they were faded.  The background on this rug is one of my favorite colors that you see in antique rugs….kind of a dingy golden camel color….and then you put that pop of red up against it! LOVE!!

When you hook rugs now, do you think about what someone else might think of them 100 years later? Do you label your rugs with your name and date? How about adding a bit of the “story” behind the rug.  I rarely label my rugs, but perhaps in the future I’ll put a label with my name and date and tell a little bit about what inspired me to hook the rug.

What are your thoughts on this antique rug?

If you are not drawing out patterns from your heart are you really hooking YOUR rugs or are you hooking someone else’s rugs?

Would you still hook if there were no commercial patterns available?

What would your rugs look like if you drew them yourself?

What if you were limited in your hooking to the wools that were already in your stash? Would you just use those wools, or would you supplement with other fabric…..say from clothes that you were tired of wearing?

Can you “unlearn” things that you already know?

Things that make you say “hmmmmm”.