Saturday, December 15, 2012

In memoriam

My heart truly goes out to all of the people of Newtown, Connecticut but especially to the children and staff of the school and the families of those that lost their lives. As a parent, I can't imagine how much pain they must be going through. I pray that they will eventually find some peace.


Charlotte Bacon, (age 6)

Daniel Barden, (age 7)

Olivia Engel, (age 6)

Josephine Gay, (age 7)

Ana M. Marquez-Greene, (age 6)

Dylan Hockley, (age 6)

Madeleine F. Hsu, (age 6)

Catherine V. Hubbard, (age 6)

Chase Kowalski, (age 7)

Jesse Lewis, (age 6)

James Mattioli, (age 6)

Grace McDonnell, (age 7)

Emilie Parker, (age 6)

Jack Pinto, (age 6)

Noah Pozner, (age 6)

Caroline Previdi, (age 6)

Jessica Rekos, (age 6)

Avielle Richman, (age 6)

Benjamin Wheeler, (age 6)

Allison N. Wyatt, (age 6)


Rachel Davino, (age 29)

Dawn Hochsprung, (age 47)

Anne Marie Murphy, (age 52)

Lauren Russeau, (age 29)

Mary Sherlach, (age 56)

Victoria Soto, (age 27)

Friday, December 14, 2012

Twisted humor

Ok, those who know me, know that I have a bit of a twisted sense of humor. Growing up, my dad entertained us with endless corny jokes, which helped keep us laughing but also, colored my sense of humor.

Later, when I went back to college to finish my degree, I was introduced to the Buffy the Vampire Slayer series during an English lecture. I had heard of it but hadn't seen any since I wasn't terribly impressed with the movie. I'm so glad I decided to give the series a shot. The sarcastic, twisted take on horror and science fiction is definitely my cup of tea. Joss Whedon definitely has a knack for this. Buffy, Firefly, and Angel(especially when James Marsters returned as Spike). Firefly is a great alternate take on the space cowboy idea with actually combining space and westerns. Nathan Fillion is perfect as Captain Mal Reynolds.

Last year, I discovered a few new favorites. A preview for Torchwood: Children of Earth peaked my interest which led me to watch the whole series. (Definitely more "adult" content that Doctor Who) Torchwood, in turn, led me to Doctor Who. I love this show. I've only watched the current series not the ones from the 60's through the 80's. Each new Doctor takes some getting used to but they're all so fun in their own way.

On the horror front, Supernatural is an awesome show. I miss the Bobby character (Jim Beaver) but I like that their including more Cas (Misha Collins).

Haven plays with sci-fi influenced by Stephen King's own twist humor. Don't think of humor when you think of Stephen King? How about in Under the Dome when King tells part of the story from the groundhog's perspective just before it gets sliced in half by the dome?

I have to include Warehouse 13 in the mix. It's not particularly twisted but still fun to watch.

If you, like me, have a twisted sense of humor and watch too much tv, I would suggest you give these shows a shot. And, if you know of any movies, tv shows or books that are similar, let me know. I'm always looking for a good time waster.

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Apple pie and serendipity

About a week ago, I had way too many apples that no one was eating. While grocery shopping, I found frozen pie crust that uses vegetable shorting instead of lard. I had my monthly knitting, crocheting, quilting group meeting on Tuesday. Usually there are only a few people there plus kids. I love apple pie so I decided to make 2, one for the group and one for home.
Now, as I've noted before, I'm a huge procrastinator. HUGE! I'm the leader/coordinator/whatever for the group and because people asked, I changed the meeting from Sunday afternoons to Tuesday at 10. We rarely ever get out of the house that early. It takes us at least 15 min. to drive to the meeting which doesn't include the eternity it takes to get everyone ready and in the car. The recipe called for 40 min. cook time. So, keeping these points in mind, when do you think I started the apple pies? Not the night before, like I had planned. Not 7 a.m. after getting up and getting my day going. Nope, I started leisurely peeling, chopping, coring 14 apples sometime after 8 then didn't get the pies in the oven until about 9:00.

As Murphy's Law dictates, the pies actually took almost an hour until they were done. We left the house 5 min. after we were supposed to be at the meeting. My friend even called me when we were a few minutes away to see if I was actually coming. Ooops! You think that would be enough right? Wrong. I get there and they were outside waiting. Odd, they could have just waited for us inside, right? Nope. The doors were locked. They're NEVER locked during the day. And, of course, no one here has a key. We stand around for a few minutes discussing options when another friend pulls up late for the meeting. Does she have a key? Nope.

I suggest my house. Nope too far for one. Chuck E. Cheese is suggested. Nope, another doesn't want to introduce it to her 2 year old just yet. Finally, I suggest the nearby library. They have a community room and maybe, just maybe it's available. All agree and off we go. On the way I think about bring the apple pie into the library. You can eat in the community room but I decide that it would be a bit much especially since when we arrive we find the library parking quite full. What's up with that on a Tuesday morning during school? We all had to park on the far side of the parking lot. No big deal, there are a couple of picnic tables outside and it's a beautiful day in the upper 60's so once everyone parks, I tell them change of plans, we're going to go sit at the picnic tables and eat our pie before going inside. We start the trek across the parking lot to the picnic tables and the kids start to bulk. There's so bird poo and no table clothes to cover it up. Hmm, now what? Oh wait, I think I still have a hospital drape (big, blue water-proof cloth) in the back of my van. We head back to my car, right in front of which is a nice sized grassy area.

So our inside knitting meeting turned into a outside apple pie picnic on one of the most beautiful days of the year. We spent the whole meeting time outside chatting while the kids played.

A whole chain of events came into play to make that such a wonderful morning. Me being late made it so that we didn't miss our friend's arrival. A second friend that hasn't ever come before decided to come and she was the reason for not heading to my house since she lives further away. (Being at my house would have meant we spent the time inside.) The locked doors had us looking for alternative locations. The unusually busy library parking lot had us parking near the grass. An unseasonably warm day plus having the pie to share had us outside. If any of these things had been different, we wouldn't have had nearly such a great day. It still would have been a good day but not nearly so wonderful. And the second pie, it was a big hit with dh. He's asked me for another, which I guess I'll make today or tomorrow. I forgot to take a picture until the second was half gone.
I got the dutch apple pie recipe from Allrecipes here.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

It figures!

Dh never reads my blog but guess what he did a few days ago! Yup, he knows about the "surprise" quilt but he still hasn't seen it yet and he's not going to until I finish. :P Speaking of finished quilts, how about a peek at the baby quilt I finished in record time. I made another I-Spy backing. I like the I-Spy backs but they do require a good bit of extra work. Oh, well. What are all these great novelty prints for, if not for playing with? This quilt includes a variety of sweet treats as well as newly acquired VW buses and Vespas! I even found Pacman ghosts fabric (not included in this quilt). I really want to add marshmallows, pancakes, waffles and the Jack and Jenny wellies but I promised myself no more new fabrics until a make at least 3 more quilts to bust some stash.
My goofy teenager. The boy's nearly 5'10" now. I'm starting to look tiny next to him and I have to go on tiptoes to give him a kiss on the cheek and I'm not even short.
I was trying to decide between a black or white background, but some people don't like black for baby quilts and white gets dirty faster. My solution-half and half.

Monday, December 10, 2012

Design Wall Monday

This is the quilt I've been working on as a surprise for dh since Aug. 2010 according to a blog post from way back when. I had set it aside because I didn't do some of the corner squares correctly. I had hoped to finish the whole thing before dh had gotten back from his trip but being sick messed up that plan. It's sandwiched, partially machine quilted in the black squares and the grid of the border and the binding is made. I decided I wanted to do some hand quilting, so I'm doing the batiks in variegated threads. It's on the hoop right now, that's why I don't have a current picture. I'm hoping to have it all done by the 26th. It's slow going though, trying to work on it when dh isn't around. I'm a couple of days behind on posting every day but I do have a few posts started so there are likely to be a few days with multiple posts. In the meantime, you can check out other design walls at Judy's blog.

Thursday, December 06, 2012

Grand Canyon

While I was in AZ, my sisters, nieces, nephews and I took a day trip to the Grand Canyon. It was most of our first time seeing it and it was truly amazing. We got there in the afternoon and were treated with a rainstorm on the horizon with the sun setting behind it.
My camera's not great so I didn't get the best shot. It's good that I went with my nephews. Being preteen boys, they were far more adventurous than most of us and led us down a steep trail with stunning views.
There was one incident that I'd like to hear other peoples opinion's about. When we were up on one of the observation paths (far from any lower trails), I let one of my nieces (16) and the boys (12) each toss a small rock over the edge. My sisters and other two nieces had walked further on and did know anything was going on. This outraged one older couple and another women with them who were quite vocal in their disapproval. They insisted that they were going to hurt someone down below. Once they realized that I was with them, they proceeded to have an exchange between themselves about "How these people come to this country and don't follow the rules" etc. 1)I would never have allowed them to throw the rocks if I thought there was ANY chance of them hurting someone. 2)My sisters wouldn't have had a problem with it either. My younger sister probably would have thrown a few herself just for spite. 3)There were no signs or warnings about not throwing rocks over the guardrails. 4)I was the only Muslim in the group and our family lines can be traced back to 3 Native American tribes so it's not exactly like I'm new here.
Now, I tend to be non-confrontational, so I didn't engage them at all except to say that they were my nephews, hoping that that would stop their diatribe about foreigners-it didn't work. One of them took it upon herself to have a little chat with one nephew before I could make it back over to him. After she left, I explained to him that he hadn't done anything wrong and that I would never have let him do it if there was a chance of him hurting anyone. Then I let him throw his one rock. The nephew that got the "talking to" hasn't had to deal with prejudiced people too much, my other nephew's father is Mexican and my sister told me they've heard it before and are used to the stares and occasional comments, how ever moronic they are.
So, my question is: What would you have done in that situation? Would you have let the kids toss the rocks down? Would you have confronted the couple? Would you have ignored them?

Wednesday, December 05, 2012


My poor blog has been seriously neglected lately. Sorry for being so lax. Unfortunately, all of my recent pictures are on our laptop which I don't use very much and never when I'm blogging. (Don't ask me why I put them there. I have no idea.) Life as usual is busy. After taking my trip to visit my mom and then my dad and sisters (which was great), dh went to visit his family. While he was gone, I had a never ending cold that kicked my fanny. Usually when he goes on trips I do some big paint project but this time I had planned to do tons of quilting. Didn't happen. :( I got some cutting done and finished piecing and layering a quilt for him but didn't get the quilting finished. It was going to be a surprise so now I'll try and get it finished by our anniversary (16 years on Dec. 26). I had a baby shower to go to last weekend. When the invite went out, I thought it said it was going to be next weekend. Imagine my surprise when I double checked the date and found I had only 4 days to finish the baby quilt. I had only cut out about half the pieces I needed. That would have been ok except I'm a huge procrastinator so Friday morning I cut the rest of the pieces and got the I-Spy back partially finished then went about my day. I ended up staying up all night getting it pieced and quilted. I normally hand stitch the binding to the back but dh suggested I just finish the whole thing by machine. I was reluctant but time was not on my side with just 8 hours left to finish the quilt, sleep some and take care of normal, everyday stuff. I didn't do my best work on the binding and I don't think I'll use that method again since I really wasn't happy with the results but I had not choice but to give it to her as it was. Note to self: Stop procrastinating so much!!! I'm hoping to transfer my pics in the next couple of days so that I won't have boring blog posts. My poor blog only has 9 posts so far this year, which is truly pathetic. Let's see if I can manage a post a day for the rest of the year. In the meantime, here is a pic of dh and me
from 2(ish) years ago.