Sunday, January 31, 2016

My Giveaway

Hope you're having a nice Sunday. A big storm is coming in here so we're preparing for alot of strong wind and rain. They even predict a tornado or two, although I find that hard to believe. We've had a mild winter so far, some rain but as always not enough.

I'm having a giveaway on my  Sweet Home Stitchery facebook page and invite you to sign up. I made these cute spring floral tags to give away. I'd love to send them out to the winner. They're entirely hand stitched and padded with warm and natural batting. These are fun to use, tied to a bouquet, a vase, a lamp, hung on a cabinet or door knob, etc. Plus they make great bookmarks! So I hope you'll click on the link above and sign up by leaving a comment. I like to make things simple.

I've been filling my Etsy shop with new things and loved favorites. I haven't listed this card yet, but will soon.

                                                        This cute little golden yorkie

Plus I just finished another card,
it would be nice for Valentines, don't you think?

Anyway, that's about all for now. We've been trying to walk every day and are up to over 2 miles a day. I thought we were doing good until I chatted with my brother who told me he runs 10 miles every day on the beach. Then again, he's 6 years younger than me. He's on Facebook and shares many beautiful photos of Hawaii and "his" island of Oahu.



Friday, January 22, 2016

January in the Homestead

I've been busy trying to get my little Etsy shop restocked after the holidays. I got a nice sale and sold out of several cards so am working on restocking. This little Matryoska Doll card is the latest, I listed it today.

                       I also got another Shih Tzu puppy is in the shop too, he is a favorite.

            You might wonder where I take the photos, the vintage radio is my favorite location!

                                          and yes, it does work. Quite well, in fact. We bought it from a retired gentleman who refurbishes vintage radios with new parts. They live again!

Our weather is warm right now, in the 70s most days but we are getting rain occasionally. Everyone here hopes for more, of course, with our drought. The water district has cut our outdoor water usage 70%!.
We covered our little new orange tree with shade cloth and it seems to be doing well, in spite of some freezing nights. Alan talked to a landscaper who suggested we use the shade cloth as plastic would get too  hot with our warmer days.
Of course, like many of you, we're getting our seed catalogs in. Such fun to look at all the beautiful photos and seed selections!

The new puppy has grown and doing well. Bella is now around 5 months old and full of energy. The older dogs have accepted her and she's one of the pack now. Kingston who is the elder is her big brother and plays with her. Jackson the rat terrier, also a senior is the Alpha dog and Bella follows him around like a shadow. He's teaching her his ways.

                                                          She's like a miniature pit bull.

Jayden our grandson is now over 4 years old and getting ready for school. Hard to believe!

Here he is holding a fish he and his dad caught at one of our local lakes. I believe this is a sun fish. Yes, Southern California does have lakes. Most of them are man made but we do have one here that is natural, that's Lake Henshaw.
That's about all for today. I hope you will visit my Etsy shop. Our locksmith business hasn't been very busy so my sales help us buy food and other necessities.

Monday, January 4, 2016

A New Year


  Happy 2016!



Opening a new year, I wanted to let you know my friend, Nancy Huggins has a Go Fund page to help she and her husband move out of a meth infested town. Her dogs have been threatened and a neighbors cat was shot and killed. They didn't realize what a bad place it was when they moved in and they're desperate to move into a neighboring larger town with a good law force and more healthy living, both for them and also their rescues.Any donation, small or great is most appreciated.

They want to buy a home, however, they've also been victims of identity theft which takes time to resolve. When it rains, it pours or so it seems. Her husband is also a veteran and in poor health. This stress has taken a toll.

Her Go Fund Page is here  please help if you can!

I opened my Etsy shop and have listed a few new cards. I had alot of fun making these and hope you enjoy them.

The first one is called Rose Trellis and was a challenge.

      It looks absolutely gorgeous and the photo doesn't do it justice.

The second new pattern is a poodle with a continental clip. For fun I made the dog pink.

 A pink poodle!

                   I backed it with a floral pattern and I think she's proud of her new look.

The third new pattern are these sunflowers. Much brighter than pictured and another of my
favorites.  I took the pics last night with not the best lighting. Sorry about that. Taking pics with a tablet is hit and miss. I hope to do better in the future.
Lastly, one that was sold some time ago and I've relisted it.

                     Strawberry Thieves


I'm continuing to stitch more cards, and replace ones that have sold. I have another one ready to stitch, my best seller, The Shih Tzu puppy.

      

That's about all for today. We're expecting a big rain storm tomorrow so I and Alan worked outside this morning to weather proof the patio and backyard. He raked up leaves and I did alot of sweeping. Picked up all the toys that our grandson left and got things ready for the flood.

Wishing you and yours a very happy and healthy new 2016!


Wednesday, December 16, 2015

White Elephant Party, Commodities and Biscotti


Its hard to believe its almost Christmas.Its been a rough year for us as for many. We've had a bad family problem that I won't go into but thank you for your prayers. Things are a bit better now but we're not out of the woods yet.

We were invited to a White Elephant party earlier this month and had a wonderful time with old friends and new. The party was started with prayer. We played games, sang Christmas carols and lots of laughter. I won the first game by naming the most Christmas carols and won a large container of popcorn! Fun!
Victor the host made a wonderful Carmel Cake, it was like eating a  candy bar, wonderful! He's an accomplished cake baker. 

The party was a wonderful relaxing evening and one I will remember for a long time.




Today I went to the monthly USDA commodity  distribution.  Years ago as a teen I volunteered handing out the food never dreaming that I would one day be on the receiving end. As I drove away from the office where I picked up a huge amount of food, I could only be thankful that we live in such a great country and praised the Lord. 
If you're reading this and are on a limited income, the commodity program really helps. This time I got a large bag of apples, two 1 gallon juice containers, rice, beans, oatmeal, 5 cans of canned chicken, 4 cans of vegetable soup, 2 lbs of raisins, canned fruit and more. It was so heavy a package, I used a grocery cart to get it to my car. The apples were locally grown and really good. The canned chicken was in large 15 oz. cans. You just have to be under a certain income level to qualify. You can find out more on the website.

Right now I have some White Chocolate Cranberry Biscotti cooling, ready for the second part of the process of being twice baked. Then I will dip one end in the melted white chocolate. I found the recipe online at  Fake Ginger. It smells wonderful as its cooling getting to be sliced and baked again.
Biscotti is easy to make and well worth the effort!
This photo is from the website, mine won't be as beautiful but I think they'll taste as good!


that's about all for today. I hope to post more often, I promise!

Thursday, November 26, 2015

             Wishing all a wonderful Thanksgiving!



Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Thanksgiving Decorations and a new family member


I thought I'd share these little figures of piligrims. Alan brought them home one day about 30 years ago and I just love them. Put them out every Thanksgiving. Nancy Huggins made the raggedy runner and it fits perfectly with the theme.

Many of our decorations were destroyed in the garage fire we had some years ago. I've been picking things up as I find them. This little turkey was found recently at the dollar store and I think it looks great with the fabric pumpkins.

Next I'll be putting in the leaf for our table and doing a table  of sorts. I have a lovely large harvest  tablecloth that was my dear mothers.  But that's for a different day, still some time before the big feast. We have been invited to a neighbors house but I still want to decorate and will have a turkey as we all love the leftovers.

I've listed all the 12 Days of Christmas cards I've got completed. I still have 3 to go, however, with the weeks flying by, I don't know if I will be able to finish the series this year. I thought I'd better list what I have got done. The 10 Lords A Leaping is a difficult pattern, a challenge which I enjoy but having to watch our grandson takes up alot of my time. Plus we have a new puppy, I really wasn't up for that challenge however our grandson loves her so, I didn't have the heart to say no.

Bella is very small, part chihuahua and part (can you believe it!) pit bull. She's a friendly sweet little thing and lively. I can't seem to get a good photo of her as she's constant movement.

  not the greatest photo, she was busy chewing on a rubber bone. She's 9 weeks old and we're busy getting her house trained which is something I'm really not good at. I'm really a cat person. So we now have 3 dogs, 4 cats, and two Bearded Dragon lizards. Phew! 3 of the cats are ours, the rest are our sons. Quite a zoo.

Here is our son with his bearded dragon in front of our house. Very calm and gentle lizard and no problem to take care of, his name is Rango and Don feeds him meal worms and crickets which he gets at the reptile store here in town. The lizard also likes greens and other vegetables at times. Don keeps him in a large aquarium in his room, with a heat lamp. He bought our grandson a baby bearded dragon which Jay called Rosy. She has her own aquarium with similar feeding habits.










Wednesday, October 14, 2015

12 Days of Christmas continued



Here is the 7 Swans a Swimming, I went ahead and ordered the rest of the patterns in the series so have the complete set now.
Below is 8 Maids a Milking,

Next is 9 Ladies Dancing which I have almost completed. They are fun to stitch and I'm on a mission to have a complete set to list. If you're interested, I will offer them at a lower price per card. I usually sell the cards for $6.50 each as they take alot of work to do. About an hour or more to pick out the pattern, and then another two to three hours to stitch, plus the cost of materials and pattern.
But if someone is interested in the complete set of 12, I will offer it at lower cost. Very unique cards for your special family and friends.

 Of course, if you'd like to make them yourself, you can find the patterns here at Pinbroidery  They have many beautiful Christmas card patterns.

Monday, October 5, 2015

October

Hard to believe how fast this year has gone. I'm so sorry I haven't post very much the last few months. We've had alot of family problems that I won't post about but please keep our grown son in your prayers if the Lord calls him to mind.
We have the garden about finished for the year. Alan continues to rebuilt some of the raised beds. We have one left to do, however its raining! How California needs the rain! So glad for the wet stuff.

I've been doing alot of house cleaning and organizing. Also have more Christmas cards done and stitched. I'm trying to finish the 12 Days of Christmas series, and have 3 more done.

Here is 4 Calling Birds


5 Golden Rings
And 6 Geese ALaying

I just finished this one last night and haven't mounted it on a card yet. I think it turned out well. My personal favorite is the Calling Birds. I love the musical notes. Next, of course, is 7 Swans a Swimming and 8 Maids A Milking.

I'm so fond of the entire old English song as I first became aware of it, when I was in the Girls Glee Club in middle school. We learned many Christmas songs and went to different organizations to sing during the holidays. I've always loved to sing and was in church choir when I met my soon to be husband (now of 41 years) Guess singing the Easter Cantata paid off! My dad's family were all singers with many involved in choir. Guess its our Celtic back ground.




Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Garden, Rain and My Etsy Shop

We're refurbishing our raised beds now that the garden is finished for this year. Its quite a job and one neither of us relished but had to be done. Some of the boards were dry rotted after several years out in our wickly hot summers.  This is a finished one. We painted the boards with some redwood paint that will protect them at least for a couple more years if not more.
Alan took apart each raised bed and looked over each board. We've replaced several so far and then rebuilt them. Phew! Hard physically but good work.
This was done last week which was a hot one. The temps were in the low 100s so we tried to work early mornings and evenings. Resting during the day.
Now the rains have come and its alot cooler.
You can see the one on the right is the old one which is coming apart in places and the new one on the left. What a difference! We're planning on putting down mulch between the beds after we're done.
We had a good productive garden this year with alot of canning going on.
The strawberries didn't do well  however. We think its because our climate just doesn't work for strawberries. The garden is below street level and it is always hotter and colder than surrounding areas. Each yard has its own micro climate.  Tomatoes do really well for us as well as carrots, beets, beans, and squash so we'll concentrate on those vegetables in the future.

I've been working on Christmas cards to put into my Etsy shop. Plus I added another of the most popular card, the Shis Tzu puppy..he's so cute.


The 12 Days of Christmas cards are in the works. I have finished the first 3, its a little difficult to get them done with everything else going on.

This is an old photo, the new ones will be listed soon. I also ordered the next two in the series, 6 geese laying and 7 swans swimming. Hopefully, I will eventually have all 12 in the shop.
I also re listed the fabric Christmas tags...

Friday, August 28, 2015

August Drought

Sorry, I haven't been posting much. Just too much to do and also its been so hot. Mostly in the high 90s and low 100s. This seems to be the hottest summer we've had so far since moving here some 10 years ago now.

In spite of the heat, all the trees in the area are losing their leaves already. I always thought trees lost their leaves when the weather turned colder but such is not the case here.

It seems rather odd to be racking leaves in 100 degree weather and I wonder if this means a very hard winter.

I don't know if it has to do with the drought also, as you can see, the lawn is suffering. We do water the front lawn twice a week but in this heat, it still suffers. We quit watering the back lawn which is much larger. The water district has told everyone to cut back 50%. which makes us wonder why the city water fountains and golf courses are not cutting back. So far everyone is still washing their cars (we aren't) and watering their lawns like nothing is going on. Our water bill has dropped quite a bit but the sewer bill has risen. They still want their money regardless.

I've been canning, still have tomatoes and zucchini.  Also have started on stitched Christmas cards. I'll be putting them in my Etsy shop as they get done. I have some new patterns plus the old favorites, such as the 12 Days of Christmas. Nice to do when its too hot to go outside. I also listed some of my stitched tags, these will go fast as we get closer to the holidays so if you want some, be sure to order early.