February 28, 2009

chicks giveaway!


well everyone knows how much i adore 'the farm chicks' and guess what?  they are having a give-away!  go on over to their blog and enter away.:D  good luck.

February 27, 2009

oops...

just a quick got to share with you...
i was listening to a radio station this morning on the bus as i was picking up elementary students.  all of a sudden everything gets quiet and you can hear the radio pretty well and the dj says something about big perfect fake boobs.  i immediately turned the radio off and the kid behind me says to his buddy, 'ha ha ha my grandpa would like this radio station'.  cracked me up!

February 26, 2009

mom books to read...

i do these runs on the bus called 'shuttle runs' where i just run high school kids back and forth to different bowling alleys or rec centers to do p.e. stuff.  so i have some down time while they are in bowling.  a perfect time to read!  i have read a couple of really good mom books and thought i would share them with you.
guilt free motherhood...this is one of my favorites!  i have read it more than once believe me.

and this one is the best!  it just makes me cry, mostly because i'm a boob, but it makes you proud to be 'just a mom'.:D

so i thought i would just share the wealth with you!  have a beautiful day!!

February 24, 2009

house...

conversation with 4 yr old who lives in a pretty big house::
her:  why do you live in such a small house?
me:  (thinking why do kids ask questions like this?)  because it is all the house we need, i guess.
me again:  why do you live in such a big house?
her:  well, i guess that we just wanted to build a big house.
me:  ok then, hmm.

i do live in a pretty small house...it's true....

so here is the story of why we live in a small house from the beginning...
once upon a time there was a little girl, me.  i had an aunt and uncle who lived on a farm and i loved to go there.  we would flood the mice out from under the grain bin and spend hours in the barn.  we could ride horses there...they had an old car that we could play in.  it was heaven to me.  i loved going there.  so i decided that if i couldn't live in a big city, which was my other dream, i would like to live on a  farm.  somewhere i could have animals and lots of room for my kids to run around.  
fast forward to 10 yrs. ago.  big d and i were on our way to put some money down on a piece of land out west.  we had our house plans picked out for a beautiful farm house and were excited to build the house of our dreams.  we would have just enough land for a horse and our dogs and maybe a few chickens or something.  we just happened to stop by my husband's uncle's work and he said, 'oh before you go out there come and at least look at this house out by me.'  ok...whatever.  we loved where he lived and had always just figured that it would be out of our price range.  we pull up to this house and oh wow.  can you say UGLY?  it is a boise cascade home...i don't know if you know what that is but it's kind of like a manufactured home.  which isn't that bad...BUT this one had been neglected in a BIG way.  the pasture started 10' from the back door.  it needed everything new.  it hadn't been painted since it was planted here in 1969...i'm serious.  there was the original carpet in parts of the house and the bedroom had been pieced together with carpet remnants.  the bathroom was disgusting, the roof needed to be replaced, the laundry room was in the kitchen and there was 5 inches of mouse poop on top of the cupboard underneath the counter top...i could go on and on.  wow...maybe not, uncle robert.  so he then took us to a house up the street. one of my favorite houses.  the sweet people took us on a tour and gave us the run down of what they had done to their house.  built on and redone everything from scratch.  well...maybe we could do it.  the one bonus to this house is that it has a big chunk of property.  more than enough for what we would want to have. needless to say we ended up here in this little house that is nothing that i ever would have wanted in a million zillion years.  we have redone virtually every inch of the property.  it has been more work and money then we would have ever thought.  but you know, i wouldn't trade this house because i wouldn't have what i have...
this is the view out of my sewing room window into my backyard...notice that red building in the back?  that is a granary from the 1800's that a little man gave to us for taking it down before it got demolished when he sold his place....we could never have put that on our 1/2 acre out west. and those little wooden buildings?  they house my husband's birds.  we have raised turkeys, pheasants, chukkars, quail, rolling pigeons, chickens, ducks and dove in those little pens.
we couldn't have had these either..
these are the ladies...
this is the big guy.  these are our fallow deer and they have been so much fun to have.  we definately wouldn't have had the room for those.:)  we are moving a little cabin in this spring and someday i get to have a greenhouse in the back.  i also have the gardens of my dreams.
don't get me wrong...somedays i would love to have a nice big new house or just a new house period.  i would love to have a nice big master bedroom and not have to share a bathroom with my kids.  it would be awesome to have a family room that wasn't in my kitchen.  but you know, on the days when i am feeling that way all i have to do is walk around my place for a little bit and i remember right away why i live in this small house!

February 23, 2009

my little punkin patch

we spent all glorious day in the yard on saturday...it was a balmy 47!  it really felt good out there and was a perfect day to clean out the punkin patch.  i have an awesome little patch of ground tucked in behind the bird pens that was originally set aside for the punkin patch...it's slowly evolved into an awesome nook with roses and flowers and a big awesome grass.;-)  that's a picture up there of it when it's in its full glory...

last year was a rough year for gardening and me.  i had the farm chicks show and then raspberry days to get ready for and everything else just kind of slipped into the background.  that means that my yard is far from being ready for spring this year.  it was so awesome to get outside in the dirt and rake and prune and get everything ready...i love spring.  i walk around my yard on a daily basis looking for signs that the flowers are going to come out soon.  the buds are already starting to swell on the lilacs and the trees.  there were just the slightest little bumps on the rose canes that leaves were starting to form.  i love it!!  i also love spending the days outside working side by side with big d making our little piece of land come to life.  it's one of the most simple pleasures in my life.  i'm so blessed to have those simple gifts.

so if you haven't had the time to get outside and get things ready now is the time.  you can plant your peas on st. patty's day and it's a good time to prune all the dead off of your plants.  you should wait until the forsythia start to bloom before you prune your roses but i usually start a little earlier.  when i get ready to do that i'll post a little tutorial on here about how to properly prune them.  they are one of my favorite plants and i have lots of them to prune so i'm getting to be pretty good at it.:D

February 19, 2009

it warms a mother's heart...


the other day as i was sewing this...








little dresser runner for the little ones room
miss maya came in and we had the following conversation...

maya: mom, what are you making?
me: a thing to put on the top of your dresser.
maya: you must really love your kids.:)
me: why is that mybug? 
maya: because you always make us cute stuff! i want to give you a big hug and a kiss!  (hug and kiss follow..yay i love maya's hugs and kisses!  she has some good kissin lips :D)

now i tell ya what, that just makes my heart smile!  that is why i make them stuff...because i love them.  i think sometimes i just forget that.   i want them to have a sweet little pretty place to call their own, where they can be cozy and feel loved and cared for.  thanks for the reminder little one...she's good at that too.

shameless plug coming your way...if you like that runner there is one available for sale here and then again over here.  sorry, i had to do it!

February 18, 2009

spring dreamin on a snowy day...



i've been playing with picasa..thanks apron girls for the tip!...and thought i would share a collage of some of our springtime garden pictures from last year.

February 17, 2009

quilt #2 on the procrastination list...

a few weeks ago i showed you this quilt that i had started many moons ago finally quilted and ready to bind (still waiting for binding).  well, this little quilt was started on the day that we got the call that there was a little peytie girl.  she's 2 1/2.  yeah i'm a huge procrastinator.  my sister finally finished sewing it all together for me this fall and then quilted it for me....yay!  it's very soft and sweet, isn't it?  so there you go...another one down.  now i've just got three more that are in varying degrees of being pieced together.:D  give me another 8 or so years and i'll show you those too.;)

February 16, 2009

another junkin idea...

i thought i would share another way to use the junk you have lyin' around...
i'm a purist when it comes to antiques or junk and usually just leave them as is.  some like to paint stuff but i like to look at the wear and tear they have and imagine the people who used them before they came to me.

this is a little school chair that i got for a song at star mill, i think.  i have it between my tub and shower in my bathroom...it's a great place to hold my basket full of lotions and potions.  the basket that is holding those is an old wire freezer basket that i picked up somewhere.   i'm not good at keeping track of places that i get stuff...i just pile it up and then when i need something i can go 'shop' through my own little stash.:D
i love wire baskets and pails and whenever i come across them for a good deal i scoop them up.  they are always handy to have around.  this one was flat on the back and worked perfectly on the wall in the bathroom to hold my tub magazines.  the bathtub is my own private magazine reading sanctuary....country living take me away!
here they are put together.  i bugged dave about building me a really cool shelf for this little space forever and it just wasn't happening so i had to come up with something and i had all of this on hand. maybe someday when i redo my bathroom... 
(hopefully someday soon, white tile is never a good idea!) but for now this works just great and i love being able to use all of my 'junktiques'.

note:  i saw the word juntique somewhere in a magazine to describe a style and it sounds so much better than just plain ole junk, doesn't it?  so i've decided that i would adopt that word to describe my own style...that way i don't sound quite so white trash, right? right?!

February 11, 2009

the best kind of gift...

we went to my mom's a couple of weeks ago and she gave me something.  it won't look like much to you but to me it's a treasure...


so this is my mom's pancake skillet thing-a-ma-bob.  i love it because you can cook lots of pancakes at a time and the plate fits under there so they stay warm!  it's older than me and i'm 36...that's a lot of pancakes, my friends.  it's worn and seasoned and very well used.  i think that is why it is a treasure to me.  it brings back many, many good memories of my mom cooking.  my mom is a fabulous cook, i'd put her up against paula dean any day of the week.  she always cooked yummy stuff and so many of my happy memories of childhood surround her cooking.  tonight i made one of my family's favorite recipes, stacked tacos.  that's another treasure she's handed down to me, lots of good recipes.  i've never heard of anyone else that makes these and so i thought i would share our family recipe with you all.  it's long and there are actually a couple of recipes here so bear with me.  they are well worth the effort!:D

egg masa tortillas


2 eggs
1 Tbsp melted shortening
3/4 c milk
1/2 c masa harina (dehydrated masa flour)  you can find it in the mexican food aisle
2 Tbsp regular all purpose wheat flour
1/4 tsp. salt
Beat together all of the ingredients to make a smooth batter.  Use 2 Tbsp batter for each tortilla.  Spread a spoonful of batter onto a greased griddle, swirling the batter to round our the tortilla to a 5 or 6" diameter.  Bake lightly on each side.  This makes 10 tortillas but I always double the recipe so we can have left-overs.  Here's a picture of what they should look like...


*this is the recipe of what goes on top of the little tortillas...


maria's enchilada sauce


1 C shortening 6 garlic cloves minced
1 1/2 C flour 1/2 C chili powder
2 qts water 1 large can tomato juice
6 tsp salt 1 Tbsp sugar
1 tsp vinegar dash of cinnamon

Mix one quart of sauce and 1 large can red chili sauce...the walmart brand works great!  This is also found in the mexican food aisle.
Use 1 quart of enchilada sauce with 1 lb. cooked ground beef.  I usually double this recipe too and freeze it in 1 qt sizes so that i can easily add the hamburger and chili sauce.  Then I always have it on hand when we're craving stacked tacos.  Just thaw it and add the hamburger then.

For the stacked tacos you put a tortilla, then sauce, then grated cheese, chopped lettuce, tomatoes, chopped avocados, chopped green onions.  Then start add another tortilla on top and start all over again.  My hubby likes sour cream on top and I like more hot sauce, you can just do whatever your family likes.  These are a little spicy what with all the chili powder and red chili sauce but they are YUMMY!!  My mom always served these when we had company and I've had them for bunco and everyone always loves them.

so there you go...a little of my family.  hope you make em and love em!



February 9, 2009

tales from the bus...

do you ever have those days when you think to yourself, 'self, what else could go wrong today?'  i had one of those days today.  it started out beautifully at 5am..now for those of you who know me well i am NOT a morning person.  so 5am wake-up is my own private hell.  i was excited today because i didn't have to drive one of the 1990 'sub-buses'.  the guy i was driving for was sick so i got to drive his bus.  i drive through snow in the dark out to saratoga springs...i hate saratoga springs.  it is a lovely place but whoever designed it with those street names must have hated his bus driver as a youngster.  it is hard to maneuver during the day when it's light outside but throw some snow and dark into the mix and it is not pretty.  it's hard to find the streets, especially in the southern most regions, and the streets are about as wide as the bus and people like to park on the side of them...you do the math.  so i get all the kids loaded up, turn the corner and every light on my dash lights up  and then nothing.  dead bus.  thank goodness that these kids were high schoolers because if i would have had a bus full of elementary kids i would have left them high and dry and walked home.  seriously.  luckily bus drivers are quite possibly the most helpful bunch of people you could ever meet and two buses showed up to take the kids to school.  45 minutes later, that's how far out of town we were, the maintenance guys show up with a replacement bus and off i went to my next run. first i stopped to get some morning caffeine and locked myself out of my bus AGAIN.  luckily this one had a side door so it was a little lower to the ground and not so hard to climb into. finally finished my run and all is well.  i come home and go back to the garage at 1:30...plenty of time to pick up my high school students, on a normal day.  you know it, today was early out day so i completely missed my high school run.  in tears people.  am i the moron who is the only moron who forgets early out day...the sweet little secretary at the garage told me i'm not and in fact someone else did the same thing today.  whew.  i did make it in time for my grade-school kids and got them home safe and sound.  on my way back to town i looked down and the gas light was on.  i went to the gas station and began filling up and my little paper with my pin # on it so that i can get fuel blows out of my hand and under the bus.  i had to get down on my stomach with a broom and get that little paper out of there.  before i left that gas station i literally looked 3 times to make sure that the gas pumper thingy was not still in the bus...that is what kind of day i had today.  thank goodness it is  over and i can start again tomorrow.:D  616 clear.

February 7, 2009

our cheerleaders rock!

warning:  this post may be a little seriously so blessedish.  sorry but it has to happen occasionally.  :D

once again our little pghs cheerleaders won their competition...you girls are awesome and i'm so proud of you and all of your hard work!

today though i am feeling especially proud of my girl.  she had a rough day today.  she came down a little early from one of her stunts.  i know most of you are going, uh so what?!  well in the life of a pg cheerleader this means instant death to your dreams of being #1.  as anyone who has belonged to a team knows, that is the worst thing you can do to your teammates.  well needless to say there were some serious tears flowing.  from both of us.  there is nothing worse than knowing that your child is hurting and you can't do a thing to help them...you all know how that is.  to make it worse they have been #1 for so long that there is a certain pressure on them to continue on that track.  from themselves and from the teams that they compete against.  so imagine all of this pressure on my girl.  
the thing that makes me proud of her is this:  she is a good teammate.  she strives to give it 125% all of the time because she wants to be an asset to her team.  she has taught herself to tumble and now can do back tucks.  she has worked hard to be able to fly.  a lot of the girls on her team have been taking lessons for years and she has taught herself.  that takes a lot of courage and she has it.  she did not get that from me.;)  so mady girl, good job today.  way to stay with it and bounce right back!  you are one awesome girl and you make me proud everyday.:)
it all ended up that all of the stress and heartache was for nothing because they still won!!!  yay!!!  thank you to those of you who came to cheer her on.  it meant a lot to her and me!  


and the winner is....

i decided to pick two winners instead of one and the winners are...drumroll please....

Haley
&
Jessica!

i know where haley lives but i don't know where you are jessica so drop me an email at infomadysunshine@yahoo.com

February 3, 2009

that damn groundhog drawing...

did you hear that the groundhog saw his shadow and we are in for 6 weeks more of winter?? ugghh! i want to get outside and garden and play!! i want the snow gone!!! so just to jump start spring a little for you i am going to have a give-away for some sort of spring stitchery. haven't decided which one yet but i'll post a picture when i figure that out. i'm sort of an impulsive person and the impulse hit me so i have to do it now!! i want to know what your favorite flower is....be specific now...i don't want any just plain old roses answer. i want a color of rose...get it? if you post my give-away on your blog you can enter twice. so happy spring thoughts today. i'll draw the winner on friday the 4th. :D

February 2, 2009

fun stuff...

just sharing a few fun things...


i got to have a big sleep over with my most talented niece, haley,  and our good friend, the amazing miss v, down in the nether regions of utah.  oh did we have way too much fun!  it was so awesome to sew until 4am, talk, laugh, talk some more, cry  a little, sew talk...you get the point.  i literally had diminished vocal capacity at the end of our two day stay...no kidding!  but i did make the two little ones some very cute aprons that they have worn everyday since.  i love it when you make things for your kids that they actually love.  it makes my heart smile.  don't you just love that stinkin fabric?  yay hayleaves and your bargain fabric find!!  those little ones inside those aprons are pretty stinkin cute too!!  love those girlies.

how cool is this...my sister, ginny,  got a long arm quilting machine and she quilted my quilt!!!  i pieced this quilt oh about 8 yrs. ago...i know, i'm a little pathetic.  but she did such a fabulous job and it has stars all over it and i love, love, love it!!!  if you need a quilt quilted she's running a special at 1/2 a cent per inch through march.  get a hold of me and i'll get you hooked up!  she rocks, thanks gin!

then the other day i was looking through the 'remember when' boxes and i found my apron that my cute neighbor lady made for me when i was a little girl.  how sweet is this little thing?  i was soooo excited to find it because i've been looking all over for it.  yay!



how sweet and absolutely adorable are these?  they are one of those things that you go, what the hell am i going to do with these but i definately have to have some.  you know what i'm talking about don't ya?  huh? i bought a few for christmas presents and kept a couple for myself, which i think i have found a use for....we'll see if it works out.  i'll let you know.  anyhoo...these little suckers showed up in such a cute little package i didn't want to open them, then i did and the little papers are so adorable i didn't want to take them off the papers.  it's almost mean what this lady does to you with this packaging.  it's as cute as the dang pins themselves.  but i am in love with them and she makes them each by hand.  so much talent! handmade rocks!!  i love getting something that you know someone has made with their own hands and heart.

so there you go, a little show and tell if you will.  have a beautiful day or night or afternoon or morning.
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