Monday, January 31, 2011

A sew night with my sisters

One of my sisters and her husband are going on a mission trip with their church. To raise money they were doing a silent auction. I thought some homemade items could make some good money in an auction, so I made a baby quilt, and mom and I bought some fabric and Betsy, mom, Kels and I put together some scarfs (similar to the ones I had made for them for Christmas) and donated them all to the sale. I will have to ask Kelsey how much they ended up bringing in!

Here are some pictures from our evening together!

Friday, January 21, 2011

An Austen Giveaway

Believe it or not I actually do read books other than those by Jane Austen or some Austen continuation/variation. In fact I finished this one last week. Kevin and I have read the whole series (I am a few books behind right now) and have enjoyed it. (I know it is a children book series, book they are good, clean, entertaining and a fast read so I love them!)

But back to the reason why I am posting something right now. There is a giveaway going on over at Laura's Reviews. There is an interview with the author of the book "The Perfect Bride for Mr. Darcy" and you can read Laura's book review here. I think it looks like a great read and you can get the chance at winning a copy yourself if you go check out the interview and leave a comment.

Go check it out and good luck! (If you win, you can always pass the book along to me after you finish reading it!)

In other news...I have a million things to do in the sewing room, a good amount of which needs done BEFORE tomorrow, so I will have to stop putting it off and actually get some sewing done tonight. I don't know why I do this...I really do love sewing, but I always put it off until the last second!! Maybe some sick part of me likes being stressed to the max!?!

Friday, January 14, 2011

A call for help for a good cause...and some recent sewing

A blogger friend, Rene at Rene Creates, recently asked for help from any quilting friends out there for a really good cause. I put a link to her blog post on the side of my blog.

Please take a few minutes to check out her post, and the web site for the cause. Even if you aren't a quilter yourself, there are ways you can help...check out how here.

I haven't been great about sewing lately...but I did get a few things done recently.

One thing on the list was the duvet cover for our master bedroom. I have had it on my to do list for over a year...but finally got everything I needed and took the time to do it earlier this week. Here is the final product.

I also made a few bookmarks recently...

I also put together a little bit of fabric for a swap the Atlanta Modern Quilt Guild is doing this month. I got Ellen's bag of I have to decide what I am going to make for her.

(Also pictured is a bag of 3" squares I put together for Nicole. She is working on an amazing project...a KING sized hexigon quilt. Here is a picture of her progress so far. She shared this with us at the Jan 9th meeting.)

I also got several bags of scraps at this months quilting friends are so good to me...sharing all their scraps with me!

I will share more pictures from our January meeting soon! (We had special guests with us this month and really had a great time!)

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Snow Day 2011

Well, for some reason my computer is not wanting to upload the here are two. That is all that I have been able to get on here in the past 30 minutes...which is already more time than I wanted to spend on this since I am really wanting to go sled before all the snow melts away!

My finished NYR list on 1-11-11

We have snow again here in GA, and yesterday was like a dream...I did absolutely nothing I had to do, and just played in the snow, watched a movie or two, read was perfect! But now, with another day off (since several roads are still closed) I really do have to get down to business and use this time wisely and check some things off my to do list. Clean house, do some paperwork and filing, finish my NYR's list, and go sledding again!! (Yes, that is a MUST, here in GA you have to take full advantage of any and all snow fun opportunities you get!!)

Since Kevin is busy with work this morning (in a way I am sad that cell phones and internet still works during a snow day, because that means hubby still has to work!!) I thought I would get to my NYR list and make it official. A snow day seems like a perfect time to start anew. So here is my final list. I am thinking I will try to do a few at a time, I don't want to overwhelm myself and quit altogether, but I don't want to be too easy on myself either!!

1. learn better
2. live better
3. work better
4. love better
5. be better
6. eat better
7. play better
8. communicate better
9. worship better
10. organize better
11. relax better

Explanations for each of these resolutions:

1) learn better: I have always wanted to dig a little deeper into my Bible. I have done the "read thru the Bible in a year" program for awhile now, and I want to do more. I want to dig in and really examine things that I am reading, and reference people and places. I think part of the reason why Rome was my favorite stop from our trip to Europe in the Fall of 2009 was because I saw places where Peter, Paul and other early Christians had been. I felt like I was really taking a step back in time and visiting a different world. I want to do that with my Bible study program this year, I want to look up people and places when I read about them, and see where things happened. I would really love to visit some places as well, but that would be a huge surprise and blessing, not something that I really expect to do this year! I also want to be open to any and all learning experiences as I see them. Since I was homeschooled, I grew up that way, and I want to stay that way. I want to remember to take the time to make any new or interesting thing I see a learning experience. I want to be a constant student of life!

2) live better: This NYR is all about my inability to stick with an exercise program. I don't know why I hate physical exertion so much, I just do...but I don't want to be that girl anymore. (The one that hates to sweat!) I was a tomboy growing up, I enjoyed getting dirty, running, biking, hiking, etc. I want to remember the joy I used to find in these activities and try again. I want to live a long and healthy life, and I know that getting the proper amount of exercise is important! I want to be open to trying different things, until I find something (or many things) that I enjoy...and then my NYR is to actually stick with it! I want to make it a habit, instead of a chore!

3) work better: My parents raised us to do everything in life, as if we are doing it for God. Which means you should give it your all, and not just do it half-way. I feel like recently I have been distracted (by good things, but still they are a distraction if they are keeping me from what I should be doing) and not doing the thing I know I should, or at least not with my whole heart involved. I want anything and everything I do, to be done to the best of my ability. I don't want to add stress to my life, making every little thing as perfect as possible, I just mean that I will take on each and every project with joy and with my full attention. Then I will give it all I have, for the amount of time I can put aside for it. After that, I will need to just let it go and know that I have done my best.

4) love better: This one is for my husband completely. I was raised in a home full of love, and was taught to love everyone equally and with the kind of love that was shown to me by my Savior. So, of course I do want to continue to love everyone and share God's love with those around me...but this resolution is different. It is one my husband jokingly requested, but I feel like it should be a goal of mine. Since our wedding night, loving my husband has been something of a chore. Well, not loving him, but making love to him. About 2 years into our marriage, I was diagnosed with IC(PBS) and although my wonderful husband had been good to me even before then, after that time he has been even more supportive and wonderful. Sadly, you could probably count the number of times we were "together" during our first few years of marriage on your fingers and toes. It has gotten better over time, but I want it to continue to get better. After dealing with the IC issue for a few years, we decided it was time to think about adding another member to our family and started trying to get pregnant. After four years and many tries (and lots of money) we were left in exactly the same place we were at the beginning. A couple, however we have become closer through all of this, and therefore we are grateful for it. I am a strong believer in looking for the good in any situation. Now we are excited about our family growing in other ways. I love & appreciate my husband so much, and I want this to show in every way that it should. Especially since we are at the point in our lives when we are trying to become a family and not just a couple. This is when most men say their love lives go downhill...I want ours to improve. To show my wonderful husband how much I appreciate him and his support in all that we have been through.

5) be better: I am making this one an overall statement to continually try to improve myself in any and all aspects of my daily life. If I see myself doing something I am not sure why/saying something I know I shouldn't/not doing something I probably should, I want to catch myself and change my ways. All those little things can stack up and I know I can become a better person (wife, daughter, friend, employee, neighbor, stranger) if I am consciously trying to improve.

6) eat better: This one mainly has to do with my life with IC. I have been on a very restricted diet ever since I found out what I had. My life improved immensely when I changed my diet, but I know that I haven't been as good as I should about trying to introduce things back into my diet since then. When I got to a good point, I didn't want to ruin it by eating something wrong. But I can't live life in fear, so I am wanting to be better about trying new foods this year, and also balancing what I eat. When I find something I actually like, I seem to go overboard. I want to be healthy and wise in my food choices.

7) play better: I am sure this one sounds weird as a resolution, but I only have so much free time a day and I want to spend it doing things I really want to do, rather than zoning out in front of the TV. After a long day at work, I just want to cook up some dinner, watch TV, and then go to bed. Then I am sad that I didn't use that time to work on some sewing or organizing, that I know needs done, and I really want to do. I want to make better choices with my play time this year!

8) communicate better: I love to talk, but this isn't really about that...I want to be a better all around communicator. I want to listen better, and respond to emails better. Last year, I found myself overwhelmed at times, then I would forget who I had or had not spoken to, emailed, etc. I don't want that to happen again. I want to be sure that I take the time to communicate as I should and to really listen to who I am talking to, so that I am able to keep up with everything properly. I guess this really goes with my #10 NYR which is to organize better.

9) worship better: I put this one on here because I really do want to find a home church this year. I grew up being the daughter of a pastor turned missionary. So we always had a "home" in a church or home group of some sort my entire childhood. I loved learning Bible verses and cute little songs in Sunday School and VBS. As I got older, and especially once I got married, I just stopped going to church. Work and life got in the way of finding a new church base in our new home. I know the importance of meeting with fellow believers, to help encourage you in your walk and I especially miss the praise and worship time, since I grew up in a family that loves to sing. I really want to get back into the search this year, and be consistent in the search until we find a place.

10) organize better: As I mentioned in #8, being organized, in all aspects of my life, is important to me. I already try to do this, I just want to improve this, so that I hopefully don't miss something important because I wasn't organized! This goes for all aspects of my life; personal & professional! Now that my love of Wedding Coordinating is turning into something that is bringing in an income, I want to be sure that I am keeping as organized as possible, so that I don't miss out on an opportunity, or stress myself out!!

11) relax better: This is similar to the play better resolution, except this one is all about taking 15-30 minutes to do something for me that is relaxing. Paint my nails, put on makeup...just because, write a letter/email to a friend. Something that I can do to tune out of the busy-ness of life and just relax for a few minutes.

Well, there it is. Now that is is actually written down I guess that means I need to get around to it!

Thursday, January 6, 2011

NYR's for 2011

I haven't forgotten...

I remember I said I was going to actually make some New Years Resolutions for 2011.

In fact, I have a list going. I just don't have it all looking how I want it to yet...hopefully I will soon.

Here is a sneak peak of what I have planned:

1. learn better
2. live better
3. work better
4. love better
5. be better
6. yadda
7. yadda
8. yadda
9. etc.
10. etc.
11. etc.

You get the idea...there will be 11 things I am hoping to do or improve in my daily/weekly/monthly life during 2011!

Oh...and I have a plan for another fun list (for all you list lovers out there) that will be coming up in the middle of the year. It has to do with my age...there is a big birthday this year and I want to make the most of it!!

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

A New Year, Two New Reading Challenges!!

Wow! 2011 is here y'all and I am ready for some new challenges.

I am planning on doing an official "New Years Resolutions" post on my goals for this year, but I wanted to go ahead and get signed up for some new reading challenges for this year and share them with you. (Plus, let's be honest, the NYR's are pretty much always the same every year...and I pretty much never stick with them!!)

The two reading challenges I am participating in this year are both Austen themed. (Let's face it, I am a HUGE Austen fan, so although I get some other reading time in, books that are continuations of Austen's beloved books are my fave!!)

The first one I am doing is called:

The Sense and Sensibility Bicenterary

It is hosted by Austenprose and here is the link to read all about it yourself.

Although, I hope to do more, I am only committing myself to be a Neophyte (meaning I will complete 1 – 4 selections within 2011)

Books and movies count, and I am planning on reading two books and watching two movies.

1) Willoughby’s Return, by Jane Odiwe
2) Colonel Brandon’s Diary, by Amanda Grange

3) I have Found it (Kandukondain Kandukondain) 2000
4) From Prada to Nada 2011

There will be prizes given at the end of the challenge, so that makes this even more exciting, and hopefully I will be sure to actually complete the challenge since I may have a chance at winning some great prizes!!

The second reading challenge I am participating in is:

Being a Jane Austen Mystery Reading Challenge 2011

It is also hosted by Austenprose and you can find all the info here.

I will also be doing the Neophyte level (1 – 4 novels) in this challenge and I plan on reading:

1) Jane and the Unpleasantness at Scargrave Manor (1996)
2) Jane and the Madness of Lord Byron (2010)

(This may change, it will all depend on which books I can get at my local library, and how much time I have!!)

I read "Jane and the Man of the Cloth" (by Stephanie Barron) a few years ago and was always interested in reading that there is an extra incentive, since I can possibly win a prize, I am really excited to read more!!