October 26, 2012

new food in an old machine

There's a vintage vending machine in the waiting area of a tire and vehicle-repair shop here in The Small Town. I sat there this morning, resisting the urge to spend money in either this machine or at the Daylight Donuts shop across the street.

September 23, 2012

okie signs and flowers

Today I drove the short trip down to Oklahoma to visit some of My Darling Husband's family. Nearing their house I passed through this intersection. I was amused by all the "Garage Sale" and "For Sale" signs clustered together on this one corner. Who has time to read them all as you whiz by or wait for the short red light to turn green? Funny. I suppose an earnest garage saler would just pull in to the parking lot to write down the addresses.
After lunch, we sat on the back patio, enjoyed the breeze, chatted, and admired Grandma P.'s flowers. She started all her roses by root cuttings. She was gifted with a magic green thumb! The only bushes I've ever been able to start from cuttings are boxwoods. That was an encouraging feat, but I would dearly like to be able to start roses from cuttings also. I've tried various methods, but they all died. Guess I'll keep trying. That red rose in the photograph below has the most intoxicating scent. My mother-in-law and I wanted to stand there and sniff it all day.  
Grandma's hibiscus tip of the day: if your hibiscus is overrun by sugar ants, just repot it into a flower pot instead of the ground, then place the pot in the center of a pan of water. The ants will stay away. She keeps her hibiscus on the patio.
This last snapshot is for My Darling Husband, who aspires to have a piece of frog yard art. We have a deal...he gets one of those and I will get to have a gazing ball.

August 9, 2012

molehill 5: baby block

More stash fabric used! I made this for a friend who recently had a baby boy. Each side of the block is a different fabric and has a different shape appliqued on it. I got carried away with the stuffing, so it's nice and squishy.

July 8, 2012

up close and personal

Cardinals have always been one of my favorite birds to watch. In addition to admiring their beautiful red feathers, I like to watch them flit about and hear their call. They don't just fly; they gracefully flit, as if doing aerial ballet.
I was excited to see one using my dog's water bowl as a bird bath today. 

June 7, 2012

molehill 4: kitchen wedding presents

Last year I blogged about all the fabric I brought with me when My Darling Husband and I married. Here and there I make progress on making things from the stash. I've also given away a bit of the fabric and sold some in a garage sale.

Here's a photo of my latest creation: part of a wedding present for the friends whose wedding we attended last Friday. A couple of years ago I bought some flour sack towels from the local farm store. Sometimes I am very nostalgic, and when I saw these towels, it reminded me of one of my grandmothers and how she has always dried her dishes with big white flour sack towels. I had to have some for my kitchen even though I air-dry my dishes! I bought enough for me and to make a few wedding presents for other people. I made one for this wedding present. First I embroidered a vintage design on one towel, then ripped out the seams of two towels, and sewed them together with a straight stitch. I used pinking shears to finish the edges.

Along with the tea towel, we gave the bride and groom a houseplant potted in the bride's favorite color, a set of blank recipe cards, a cheese grater off their wedding registry, and I crocheted a small granny square hot pad/potholder.

June 2, 2012

cake please

Yesterday was National Donut Day. The cake variety is my favorite, especially apple cider cake donuts. Today I ate a plain cake donut with chocolate icing for breakfast. Oh, and glazed donut holes. One of my fond memories is of my mother, sister and I purchasing donut holes at the local German bakery when I was a child in northeast Kansas. There was also a Daylight Donuts shop in town and it even had a drive-through window. 
The small town where My Darling Husband and I currently live has a couple of special-order bakeries and a Daylight Donuts shop. This morning we walked by to pick up breakfast after leaving the farmer's market. Both the donut shop and the market are downtown. A good thing about small towns is that they're walkable, so any donut calories can be exercised off!

June 1, 2012

something blue

This evening My Darling Husband and I attended a friend's lakeside wedding. The evening temperature was a chilly 51 degrees Farenheit...unusual for Kansas in June, but perfect for keeping the mosquitoes away!
My Darling Husband went as a cowboy. Such attire is normal in southeast Kansas. After all, we are surrounded by farms, ranches and rodeos, and Oklahoma cowboy culture is a mere 45 minute drive. 
The itty bitty flower girl giggled whenever the fabric petals met the sidewalk.

My Darling Husband adding to his resume of decorating cars. I added the aluminum can.
The punch practically glowed like a neon sign in the dusk! A simple recipe: blue Hawaiian Punch and Sprite. 

April 13, 2012

them cows need schoolin'

The school/daycare where I work is just outside The Small Town and a small herd of cattle lives next door. The youngest children, including my kindergarten charges, enjoy watching them sometimes. I have ample opportunity to explain where our milk and beef come from. Today when I went to work, I was regaled with the tale of the cows' great escape this morning. They got through their gate and were grazing toward the school's playground! The principal and a few teachers shooed the cows back into their meadow. Would have liked to have seen that.

March 29, 2012

give me liberty, not more taxes

Some people might think life in a small midwest town is inexpensive. In some ways it is: housing prices are cheaper than in the big cities and free-range chicken eggs purchased from a local farmer can be less expensive than buying corporate-farm eggs from the grocery store. But the sales tax isn't necessarily less than in bigger cities. Our current sales tax rate here in The Small Town is 8.55%. City officials want to increase it to 9.3%. We go to the polls next week to pass or fail the measure.
Politics can also be dirty in a small town. City officials are threatening to increase our property taxes if we the people do not increase the sales tax.
Here's a novel idea: eliminate or decrease funding for non-essential items in the city budget and use that money for needed items.
There is much local opposition to any tax increase.

March 18, 2012

early Easter colors

This house is a few blocks from ours. I call it the Easter house. Look at the house color, the pink bush by the front porch, the purple redbud tree, the yellow forsythia bushes, and the white tulips. Oh, and the yellow-flowered tree behind it. It's pretty colors all rolled together like Easter eggs in dye baths.