Tuesday, September 25, 2012

No Soup For You!

You're through Soup Nazi. Pack it up. No more soup for you. Next! –Elaine, Seinfeld, season 7, episode 6

After 10 weeks of eating every kind of soup known to man, there will be no more soup for us {at least for a little while}. The new oven is being delivered this afternoon.

This week's menu?
Zucchini, Chicken & Rice Casserole
Papa Murphy's Chicken & Garlic Pizza
Tuna Casserole
Cheesy Chicken, Broccoli & Rice Casserole
Meat & Potato Pie
Zucchini & Chicken Bake

And if Mr. Bug hadn't eaten one of the two bananas that were starting to turn spotty, I would have made banana bread today.

Monday, September 24, 2012

In the Pink: A Study in Pinwheels — Finished {and it's about time, too!}

It is easier to go down a hill than up, but the view is best from the top. –Arnold Bennett

At long last, quilted, bound, washed, blocked and folded neatly waiting for the right occasion to be used.

I finished the quilting last Tuesday. I washed and blocked it on Wednesday. It wasn't dry until Friday. And there was finally good light to photograph it today.

I'm sort of at a loss for words. The only ones that come to mind are . . . terminus . . . finished . . . completed . . . finito . . . done. Those are happy words.

There's really not much more to say anyway. I've pretty much said it all in the 2¾ years it has taken me to make this quilt. If you've been following along, you're probably as sick of it as I am  glad to see the backside of it  cheering with me. But just in case, here are links to all the posts about this quilt.
Block One
Block Two
Block Two, Take Two and Take Three
Block Three
Block Four
Block Four, Redux
Block Five
Block Six
Block Seven
Block Eight
Goal to Finish - 2011 Ph.D Challenge
Name, Label and Quilting Sketches
Getting Started with the Quilting
Quilting Update: still working on Stitching in the Ditch
Working on the Free-Motion Sections
Free-Motion Update
More quilting {and unpicking} a year later, with updated quilt label
Finished Quilting in Each of the Blocks
Quilting in the Sashings
Finished and Ready to be Blocked
Blocked but Not Dry

Yeah. It's been one epic quilt in the making.

Today's post brought to you by:
My 2012 Finishes
Myra's Ph.D Challenge Richard & Tanya's Link A Finish Friday

Sunday, September 23, 2012

A Special Sunday: Brigham City Temple Dedication

We need to become what the Lord desires us to be and that is where we should fix our gaze. –Miguel Ribeiro

One of our activities during Grandma Week this year was attending the open house for the Brigham City LDS Temple. Today, the temple was dedicated to the Lord for services to begin. Regular church services in Utah were cancelled and members of The Church, eight years and older were invited to attend the dedication, which was broadcast from the temple in Brigham City to church buildings state-wide.

Temples are beautiful, sacred places. There are currently 139 operating temples dotting the globe, with more than two dozen announced and under construction. Unlike our regular church services on Sundays, temples services are not open to the public, nor are they open to all members of the church. To fully enjoy the blessings of the temple, much preparation, understanding of the teachings of Jesus Christ, and a commitment to obeying His commandments is required.

At every temple dedication, The Spirit of God is sung, followed by the Hosanna Shout, where a white handkerchief is waved. I embroidered our handkerchiefs with our names, the temple and the dedication date. This is the first temple dedication that Grasshopper and LadyBug have attended so theirs just have the the Brigham City Temple. I went to the Oquirrh {/ˈoʊkər/} Mountain temple dedication in 2009, so mine has that one on there first. I used a really pretty font, as you can see penciled in on mine before embroidery, but the white-on-white kind of befuddles the script unless you look really closely {and kind of know beforehand what it says}. As we have the opportunity to attend other temple dedications, I'll continue to add the names and dates on our handkerchiefs around the outside border.

It was difficult to find the balance between "enough information to keep it from being confusing" and "not so much information that it is an overload" in writing this post. We kind of have our own vocabulary, so I've included a few links with more information about temples and temple dedications here.
What Happens in Temples
Temple Open House, Dedication and Regular Operation
The Blessings of The Temple
Inside the Temple
Find A Temple Near You
About the hymn, The Spirit of God
About the Hosanna Shout

Elder Boyd K. Packer, who presided over and dedicated the Brigham City Temple, said the following about our beautiful buildings of worship at the dedication of the Conference Center in Salt Lake City in 2002.

Do you think it possible for those of us who are called upon to speak to draw attention away from this wonderful building long enough to focus on the purpose for which it was built?

Perhaps it can be done with a parable and a poem.

The parable: A merchant man seeking precious jewels found at last the perfect pearl. He had the finest craftsman carve a superb jewel box and line it with blue velvet. He put his pearl of great price on display so others could share his treasure. He watched as people came to see it. Soon he turned away in sorrow. It was the box they admired, not the pearl.

The poem:

We are all blind, until we see
That in the [universal] plan
Nothing is worth the making if
It does not make the man.

Why build these [buildings] glorious,
If man unbuilded goes?
In vain we build the [world], unless
The builder also grows.

Poem by Edwin Markham

One of the speakers at the dedication today quoted Elder Packer. His point was that though the temples are large and magnificent, we go there to feel closer to our Heavenly Father. The things that we learn and the things that we feel are of far greater importance than the building, and no matter the grandeur, unless we let what is taught there change us for the better, the building has no worth.

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Just Ignore the Warnings. There isn't Malware Here. Really. I Promise. Also, 40 Before 40 Update

How am I going to live today in order to create the tomorrow I'm committed to? –Anthony Robbins

First things first. The malware warning is because the site that hosts my silly emoticons possibly has malware. It is highly doubtful that there is malware embedded in the little dudes. At any rate, I haven't been attacked and just to be safe I removed the main offender, so we should be good now.

Also, I know I promised photos of the completed Pinwheel Sampler, but it's not dry yet. I'm not sure why it's taking so long. We'll just have to make due with a photo of it pinned to the living room floor. Also, blocking a quilt is the most odious task on the planet. I almost gave up on it and threw the quilt in the dryer. I'm glad now that I didn't, but at midnight last night with just under half of the quilt left to go, I was seriously considering it.

Since my planned post has been rescheduled, filling in today is my 40 Before 40 list. It is fun to look back on all I had planned for this year. Looking at it ojectively, this list is for someone who does not work full-time sometimes and part-time most of the time. With only four more months to go, I made a few adjustments.

I crossed 8 things off the list that I've either missed out on or realistically don't have time to do.

I've checked 12 things off the list as finished.

4 things on the list are in progress. Mornings and I are, if not friends, allies.

7 things are still definitely going to happen.

I've adjusted some things to make them fit better and I'm still considering whether I want to do others. I reserve the right to cross them off the list. And I reserve the right to not do 40 things. The whole reason for the list was to expand my horizons, to improve myself and to make time to have fun. There are lots of things that I didn't include on my list because they were difficult to frame into a single thing to put on a list. But I've done a few of those kinds of things. And there's one thing that I did kind of on a whim, that should have been on the list had I thought of it beforehand. I think it deserves mentioning here.

I joined a bowling league and every Wednesday morning I bowl three games with a really cute group of ladies. Most of them are older than me. Most of them have grandchildren. My team captain has great-grandchildren. And she bowls a mean game. There are sponsors and competitions and prizes, but it's a handicap league, so it's mostly no pressure and I go just to have fun. I bowled a 125 scratch {actual score, handicap not figured in} {also, look at me already using the lingo} yesterday. It was pretty awesome.

Every time I think about bowling, I think about this Camper Van Beethoven song from 1985. I've had this earworm for three weeks now, so I thought I'd share.

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Random Bits: Vol. 3

Dream in a pragmatic way. –Aldous Huxley

The Quilt is in the Wash
It is finished. The pinwheel sampler is done. I put the last stitches in it yesterday. Finally.

I finished the binding ages ago. I was really on a roll with the quilting before Grandma Week and only had a little bit left {relatively speaking} to do in the sashing {16 sections out of 40} when Grandma Week started. I knew that lugging Grace along to my mom's to finish the quilting wasn't really an option, so I put the binding on before we left and during our sit-around-and-visit adult time after the kids had gone to bed, I did the hand stitching on it. But when we got back, I kind of procrastinated finishing the quilting because I wasn't really sure where to go once it was done.

This quilt was originally intended for snuggling under to read, or watch TV, or whatever. I'd still like it to be a snuggle quilt, but it seems like it isn't quite suited for that anymore. When the plan for the quilting became more elaborate than straight-lines ¼" on either side of every seam, I wanted to put the quilt into a quilt show or two. But I didn't get it finished in time last year. Or this year. And now I'm hoping I'll have something else even better to put in next year, and this quilt won't even be a contender.

Whether the quilt is going to be displayed or used, I knew it definitely needed a good washing. The sticking spot was whether to block it {for quilt shows} after it was washed or throw it in the dryer and make it all soft and crinkly {for cuddling}.

I finished it last night with enough time to wash it before bedtime and then throw it in the dryer and let it do its thing while I slept, but I wasn't certain what I wanted to do. After much thought, I decided this afternoon that I really want this quilt to be soft and snuggly, so I threw it in the washer in clear water {the instructions for the Blue Line Eraser that I used to remove my markings recommends that you run it through clear water before using any kind of detergent on it to avoid any discoloration} and when I pulled it out to spot treat it {it got some schmutz on it from my machine} before the actual wash, I noticed that the quilt was really not square anymore. It finished up so nice and square {gold star for me}, and wet, it was sort of curly and wrinkly. I decided that square {and a little bit stiff} was more important than soft and cuddly.

The quilt is in the wash now. When it finishes, I'm going to block it. Tomorrow, after it has had time to dry, I will photograph it and post it for your viewing pleasure {"oohhhhs" and "aahhhs" requested but not required }.

In other related news, I got my Connecting Threads catalog in the mail yesterday. It was very timely as they've just released some cute little tags that say, This took FOREVER. I thought seriously about ordering some for this quilt.

The iOSes vs. The Kitchen Appliances: Revisited
I'm still at loose ends about whether to get an iPhone, an iPad or a new oven. I thought I had it all sorted out, but the iPhone 5 was announced {effectively making even the iPhone 4S users obsolete :rofl:}, our shopping trip for a new oven was a bust, and instead we found a wide-by-side-fridge-with-a-pull-out-freezer-drawer that not only has all the whistles and bells, but is so palatial you could climb right up inside it and live in there. I'm honestly not sure why we didn't bring it home with us. Oh, wait. The fridge seems to be working for now and it's an oven that we need. That's right.

In the interest of being well-informed, I did a little research on the iPhone. My current carrier now offers service for the iPhone 4S. They do not require contracts but the trade-off for that is no discounts on a new phone or phone upgrade. You have to pay for the phone up front. Their least expensive service plan is $35.00, which includes 300 talk minutes, unlimited texting and unlimited data. It is as simple and straightforward as that. The cost of the iPhone {$650}, plus monthly service for a two-year period {no contract required} comes in at a hair under $1500, before tax. They are currently offering a $5 per month discount if you sign up for auto-pay, which shaves another $120 off the total cost.

I was only able to find plan pricing for iPhones on one of the two major carriers, which leads me to assume that at least one of them has prices so astronomical that they lock you into a two-year contract before they show you the bill. The other carrier had iPhones starting at $199 {with a two-year contract} and talk, text and data plans starting at $80 a month. This includes 450 talk minutes, unlimited texting and 300MB of data {which is small potatoes, people}. Over the course of two years, the cost is just over $2100. For their largest data plan {5GB}, we're talking $2800 for two years.

OK, so my happiness does not depend on having the newest toy. If it did, the day they announced the iPhone 5 would have been a dark day, indeed. But I'm saying, buying the iPhone outright is money ahead. As a matter of fact, you could buy two phones, if say, they release a new iPhone after a year, and still come out ahead.

While it would be seriously awesome to download all of the heavy, heavy books I lug to church every Sunday into a nifty new iOS {and as Pink suggested, store the heavy books in the empty, broken oven}, looking at the bigger picture, Mr. Bug and I are going shopping for ovens again. Perhaps we'll be able to find P.'s idea of the most practical multi-tasking hybrid oven, with wireless capabilities and a flat screen. Our favorite outlet center is offering an additional 10% off clearance prices this weekend, which means that we could get a $700 oven for $375. I like the sound of that, even if it doesn't surf the net. And maybe the fridge will come home with us too.

These people obviously have too much time on their hands.

*Note: click on the "CC" button to turn the captions on/off. It is funnier if you play it with the captions on.

Also, the taxidermied animal in the glass case at 2:24 is a liger. Her name is Shasta, and she was born in 1948 at Utah's own Hogle Zoo. At her death in 1972, the beloved animal was displayed in the cat house until they deemed that she would be more appropriately kept at the Bean Museum on BYU Campus.

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Sunday Sermons: Our Eternal Life

For behold, this life is the time for men to prepare to meet God. –Alma 34:32

Friday, September 14, 2012

Pinkalicious: A Super Secret Project Revealed

Before you were born I carried you under my heart. From the moment you arrived in this world until the moment I leave it, I will always carry you in my heart. –Mandy Harrison

Remember my sister, Jill? She's the one who brought her own bowling ball to Grandma Week. That cute little bowling ball made her arrival into the world a mere 9 days after our game. In keeping with the bugs-and-critters theme for code names for my kids and their cousins {no real names are used for anyone under the age of 18}, I shall call her Cricket. Adorable, no? Maybe not so much. But trust me, her real name is very sweet.
{Lizard Boy, Jill, Mouse and introducing Baby Cricket}

I started thinking about quilt ideas in April. I happened to be rifling through my stash and found some pretty chocolate brown fabric with pink roses on it and the idea grew from there.

I had the blocks all cut by the end of June and I started piecing the quilt just a few days before baby Cricket was born. I was actually working on the quilt top when my dad called to tell me that she had been born. Since then, every spare minute has gone into getting this quilt finished. Either I don't have very many spare minutes, or I'm really, really slow. Perhaps both. There was some unpicking involved, which cost me two days' worth of sewing time.

I finished it up night-before-last, threw it in the wash, photographed it and sent it on its way yesterday. Today, I got the cutest note in the e-mail. Just reading it you can tell she's my sister. We're actually twins. We were separated by birth. Either I was born 10 years too early or she was born 10 years too late. It's sad when that happens. Anyway. Back to the quilt. And the e-mail.

a knock at the door . . .


I had just put Cricket down for her nap and was trying to decide how to get the laundry from the washer out to the clothes line (all the baskets are full) when a shadow crossed over the front door. As I could see no car in the driveway, I first thought it was just the mail man, but then there was a knock at the door. Surprised (although I have had a few visitors who have walked over), I tried to shush Lizzie [Editor's note: the dog] while I weaved around the laundry baskets to the door. I opened it in time to see the mail man traipsing across the lawn toward the neighbor's (those mail men never use the sidewalks). I saw a box on the porch and almost hollered "thank you" to the mail man, but didn't.

Then as I bent to pick it up, I saw this cute little name on the top of the box. It was for Cricket! At first, I thought that The Dad had secretly ordered me a nursing cape from the "Udder Covers" web-site (clever and almost offensive? name)—we had received a coupon for a free cape when shipping was paid for. I told The Dad I wasn't sure if I was getting one, and the coupon has since mysteriously disappeared.

I was so dazzled by the name on the address label (same thing happened when I picked up Cricket's eye ointment (blocked tear duct) from the pharmacy and when her Social Security card came in the mail), that I didn't notice the return address (it's just so fun to see her name printed on stuff!). But then I saw the postage was from Springville. Oh! I looked again at the address label and saw that it could, of course, only be from Aunty 'Lizabeth! I waltzed into my room and said in a sing-song voice, "Cricket, you got mail today!" [Editor's note: I can totally hear it in my head. So cute!] Then I went for the scissors. As I was cutting the tape, I then worried that you didn't know that Mom made me a car seat drape (complete with loops on the inside to hang toys from). But then I read the card. Silly me. The quilting Aunt could not have sent anything, but, of course, a quilt!

SO BEAUTIFUL! I love all the different fabrics [Editor's note: 32 different pinks], and I really love the browns in it (brown just really goes so nicely with pink. I think, really my new favorite color is a lovely brown). [Editor's note: this is the aforementioned fabric that sparked the idea for this quilt.] Then, I saw the label on the back. It made me a little teary. It's just perfect and her name is so adorable all hand stitched on. [Editor's note: Jill is quite right; the baby's name really is adorable on the label. You'll just have to take our word for it.]

Thank you, so very much. We love it. It will certainly get used. I may just have to put it on my lap when I get up with her in the wee hours. That seems like the perfect way to start using it.

I can't wait until The Dad comes home, so I can show him. After he oohs, I'm sure he'll say "So much pink!" (Well, what does he expect? Cricket is a girl!)

Thank you a million. It is beautiful.
Love, Jill and Cricket

post script . . .

P.S. How did you resist blogging about such a lovely pink quilt? [Editor's note: It was really, really hard. I'm glad it got there a day earlier than I expect it to, because I was planning on posting it today anyway and hoping that you wouldn't have time to read my blog before it got there.] I love the super soft and fuzzy backing (is that called minky?) [Editor's Note: it's called Ultra Cuddle. Minky is only fuzzy on one side and this is fuzzy on both sides (which you wouldn't be able to tell anyway) which is why the quilt is super puffy without batting in it and also what caused all the unpicking.] and the satin binding [Editor's note: I love satin binding too!]. Plus, I love the roses quilted in all the blocks. So fun! Super fantastic! thanks again, Jill

Jill, I hope you don't mind that I shared your e-mail {and your hospital photo} with the world. Your narration made this post so much more fun than what I had planned. I can't wait to come give Cricket a squeeze and look at her tiny baby fingers and toes.

xo -E

Today's post brought to you by:
My 2012 Finishes

Saturday, September 8, 2012

The iPhone vs. The iPad vs. The Unexpected Contender

If it keeps up, man will atrophy all his limbs but the push-button finger. –Frank Lloyd Wright

From the moment the first iPhone was unveiled, I've wanted one. Touch screen. MP3 player and phone all in one. Could there be anything more awesome?

I couldn't imagine it, but there is. The iPad. Angry Birds. Music. E-Mail. The whole of the internet in one tiny tablet. Plus the screen is bigger.

Call me fickle, but when the iPad came along I forgot all about the iPhone. Now I only have eyes for the iPad.

I have a phone. A smart phone, even. Mind you, I can't get a steady enough connection to log into my Google account so I can link to my e-mail and get cool apps like the barcode scanner thingie, and if the ambient temperature is to hot or too cold the back and home buttons don't work. I guess that makes my smart phone a little bit dumb. But, it has a full slide-out keyboard, which is awesome, and I have unlimited data {which is good because it surfs the internet like it's on dial-up or something} and texting, I never go over my 200 allotted talk minutes and my plan is cheap. So it doesn't matter so much that I'm carrying around a $200 calculator/alarm clock.

However, there arose a debate in my head between the iOSes recently and I've been weighing the pros and cons of each against each other.

Mr. Bug hates his phone. A lot. And we're on two different carriers so we were discussing the pros and cons of switching to a different carrier with a family plan. We were also doing a little wishful phone shopping. I immediately thought of the iPhone. And then I thought of how much the data plan would cost.

The very next day I found out that iPhones are now available through my current carrier. Granted, you have to buy the phone up front, but with data plans starting at $30, it is tempting. Very tempting. I'm pretty sure that the phone pays for itself in under a year, based on the savings in data plans. And once you have an iPhone, why would you want anything else?

With that, I got all excited about the iPhone again. Until I found out that the new iPhone 4S costs $650.00. I mean for that, I could get an iPad. The screen is bigger. And just thinking of the number of heavy, heavy books I won't have to carry back and forth to church on Sundays tips the scales hugely in favor of the iPad. Because I already have a phone. A smart phone, even.

The sensible thing to do, though, would be to get a new oven.

It would seem that our household appliances have reached the age of requiring frequent repairs or replacing. When we had to get a new dishwasher in April, I lamented the fact that we had to spend our meager tax refund on something so practical. But once the dishwasher, with its TARDIS-like* qualities, was installed and the dishes were shiny and sparkling once more, I started to fantasize about other new kitchen appliances.

I thought the fridge would be the next one to go. There's something wrong with the defroster in the freezer. The drain for excess moisture gets iced over and it starts dripping into the fridge. We defrost it and it works properly for a bit and then it ices over again.

In a surprising turn of events, the oven quit working eight weeks ago {and the freezer hasn't needed defrosting in five months}. The gas burners on the stove top have never reliably lit. Sometimes, after a long series of ignition clicks, the flame will burst out beyond the bottom of the pan nearly far enough to singe off your eyebrows. Sometimes it won't light at all and I have to use a match. And once in a great while, it lights after one ignition click. But it was the oven that went out. Since the stove top still works we're not starving or anything. And I know how to use a crock pot. But I kind of miss rolls with Sunday dinner. I'm dying to make a gingerbread cake to eat with the fresh, ripe peaches that are available in abundance right now. And there are only so many kinds of soups you can make before they all start to taste the same.

The cost of a repair on the oven would fall just short of the cost of a whole new one. So I suppose a resolution to the iOS debate will have to be postponed indefinitely because we're shopping for a new oven today. And I'm pretty sure the fridge is next in the line for replacing.

I'm also pretty sure that if I were ever to acquire a $650 phone and/or tablet, I would never, ever take them out of the pretty clear plastic boxes they come in for fear of dropping them and breaking the screens.

*TARDIS /ˈtɑrdɪs/: Time And Relative Dimension In Space. The TARDIS is a time machine and spacecraft in the British science fiction television program Doctor Who. A TARDIS is a product of the advanced technology of the Time Lords, an extraterrestrial civilization to which The Doctor belongs. A properly maintained and piloted TARDIS can transport its occupants to any point in time and any place in the universe. The interior of a TARDIS is much larger than its exterior, which can blend in with its surroundings using the ship's "chameleon circuit." The Doctor pilots an unreliable, obsolete TT Type 40, Mark 3 TARDIS. Its chameleon circuit is faulty, leaving it stuck in the shape of a 1960s-style London police box after a visit to London in 1963.

Doctor Who has become so much a part of popular culture that not only has the shape of the police box become more immediately associated with the TARDIS than with its real-world inspiration, the term "TARDIS-like" has been used to describe anything that seems to be bigger on the inside than on the outside.

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Random Bits: Vol. 2

There is a curious paradox
That no one can explain:
Who understands the secret
Of the reaping of the grain?
Who understands why Spring is born
Out of Winter's laboring pain?
Or why we all must die a bit
Before we grow again?
–Spoken by El Gallo from The Fantastics, music by Harvey Schmidt, lyrics by Tom Jones

Radio Silence
  1. An absence of or abstention from radio transmission.
  2. A period during which one hears nothing from a normally communicative person or group.
It's been pretty quiet in my little corner of cyberspace lately. School started for the Little Bugs two weeks ago, the day after Grandma Week ended, and we've been getting used to our new schedule. We've had a fairly smooth transition, but the Little Bugs are busier, so the mom is busier.

I hope you won't take it personally, but I picked sewing over blogging in my spare time. But I have been thinking about you and have saved up two whole weeks of posts in my head. I'm going to try to fit everything into one post {without being tedious} and then you'll all be caught up with me.

I Love the Smell of School Supplies in the Morning
When we went to Kindergarten, it was a surprise to me that the elementary school provided all the supplies the kids would need. It was just as much of a surprise when we started 7th grade to find that the junior high does not provide materials. When Grasshopper came home from the first day of school with lists from all six of his teachers, I was kind of annoyed with myself for not realizing ahead of time that he would need this kind of stuff. I would have paid more attention to who has what on sale. I guess seven years of having everything provided tends to make you a little soft.

I decided not to take Grasshopper shopping with me because I knew I'd spend more if he came along. I mean who can resist the rows of neatly stacked school supplies just waiting to be bought? I planned on stopping at the office supply store on my way home from work the next day, but remembered that the dollar store was just down the block and went there first. I found everything there but the fancy binder with the clear plastic cover, the divider tabs that are inside it and the colored pencils. I got those at the office store, as well as the pencil box {which was on sale for a dollar}. While I was there, I compared prices and was glad I went to the dollar store first.

It was fun to put together a back-to-school package in Grasshopper's favorite color, blue. The pencil box has blue mechanical pencils, blue pens and a blue eraser in it. And I absolutely LOVE the plastic covered composition notebook. Mission accomplished! Mom's first homework assignment finished with style.

Hip to Be Square
If you wear glasses, you know how much a part of your wardrobe they are. Before I started wearing contacts, I liked to get a new pair of glasses every year. It was kind of an indulgence, justified by the fact that my prescription changes about that often. And while its not strictly necessary for the Little Bugs, whose prescriptions don't change as quickly, I've kind of made it part of the back-to-school preparations for them to have their eyes checked and pick out new glasses every year. The sales are usually pretty good just before school starts, and who doesn't love a sale even if it is for something as mundane as glasses?

Picking out glasses with the Little Bugs is always an adventure. They both think that biggest factor in choosing frames is whether or not they come in their favorite color. Grasshopper couldn't find any blue frames he liked and there wasn't a single pair of green frames, ugly or otherwise, for LadyBug to even try on. I finally convinced them that color is less important than how the frames look and Grasshopper settled on black pair and LadyBug got copper colored ones.

This year I got new glasses too. I only wear them first thing in the morning and in the evenings when my contacts have glazed over and I have to take them out, but my last pair was six or so years old and the prescription was really out-dated. And the frames were on sale, so why not?

The style of glasses these days is square. Or to be more precise, rectangular. I wasn't convinced that rectangular was the look for me and I tried on about every pair in the shop, looking for a more rounded style. But when I found a pair that were pink, with pretty, sparkly butterflies on the sides, I had to have them. Because having pink glasses is awesome.

What do you think?

Business in the Front, Party in the Back
Did I miss the memo? Are mullets back in style? Because I saw two boys in church on Sunday who were definitely wearing mullets. And I saw a third boy with a mullet somewhere else. probably outside the junior high.

I've noticed, too, that pant styles are changing from flare and straight-leg to tapered. Skinny jeans are not just on boy bands anymore. They're everywhere. And men's suit pants are narrower in the leg and the hem hits just at the top of the shoe. They're calling this "modern."

Has it finally happened? Did the 80's happen long enough ago that they are cool now? I've been dreading this. I already did the 80's and didn't like them that much the first time. Someone please wake me when the jeans aren't so tapered that you have to have zippers at the ankles to get them over your feet.

/mēm/ noun
  1. An element of a culture or system of behavior that may be considered to be passed from one individual to another by nongenetic means, esp. imitation.
  2. A humorous image, video, piece of text, etc. that is copied (often with slight variations) and spread rapidly by Internet users.
I'm still not sure if I really understand what the word meme means. But if you Google Panicked Dog Meme, this is the image in the top link:

That's my sister's dog, Raynor. She came home from work to find he'd made that mess. She said it took a lot of coaxing to get him to sit there and he didn't really want to pose for the camera. She posted it on Facebook, and someone added the caption. Since then it's gone viral. Someone even Photoshopped him into another messy room and added different captions to it. I guess that makes it a meme.

The Happy Tree Guy
Whatever your medium, remember it's your world, you're the creator. There are no limits here. We don't make mistakes, just happy accidents.

Monday, September 3, 2012

A Stitch In Time: August Finishes Giveaway Winner

As a means to success, determination has this advantage over talent — that it does not have to be recognized by others.
Robert Brault

I can't believe that August has come and gone already. When August 1st rolled around, it seemed like summer had just begun and now the Little Bugs are back in school already. When I realized that the leisure of summer was coming to an end, we really took advantage of the last few weeks of freedom. It's a poor excuse, I know, for not getting around to see all of your finishes. I promise to get that done this week {and I also promise to keep up with the September Linky Party}. Grasshopper picked our winner, this month, number 21.

Congratulations to
:partytime: Skooks :partytime:
at Skooks' Playground

Skooks will receive a a Layer Cake of Serenade by Kate Spain from our sponsor, The Fat Quarter Shop. If you have a minute, check out her winning Entry, Breezy Patchwork Curtain. She also had two other finishes this month, number 22 and number 23. Her blog is a lot of fun and she's got some great projects going on over there. I love her tagline, too: Crafting out loud for the swingset crowd. How clever is that?

Based on the number of links this month, I'm guessing you all were out making the most of the last few weeks of summer too, so take a minute to visit a few other projects that were linked up this month. I'm really looking forward to seeing what crafty things have been happening while I've been trying not to get sunburned working on my tan.

The September Finishes Linky Party is open, so you can link up as you go throughout the month. Remember to include the September Finishes button {code found in the September post} somewhere in your post. The giveaway, sponsored by The Fat Quarter Shop, will be announced shortly.

Today's post brought to you by:

Sunday, September 2, 2012

Sabbath Songs: Behold the Wounds

For behold, I, God, have suffered these things for all, that they might not suffer if they would repent. D&C 19:16

Behold the wounds in Jesus' hands,
The marks upon His side,
Then ponder who He meant to save
When on the cross He died.
We cannot see the love of God
Which saves us from the fall,
Yet know that Christ from wood and nails
Built mansions for us all.

Behold the outstretched hands of Christ
Our God, who came to save,
Whose love and grace redeems ours souls
And lifts us from the grave.
Though bruised and battered as we stray
His guiding hands caress,
He washes and anoints with oil
Then in His arms we rest.

Behold the wounds in Jesus' hands,
Look to your Lord and live
He yearns to bless you with His love
And all your sins forgive.
Oh empty is the heart of man
When it is filled with sin.
Come open wide your broken heart
And let your Savior in.

Behold His wounded hands and feet!
Come touch and see and feel
The wounds and marks that you may know
His love for you is real.
Then as you fall to worship Him
and wash His feet in tears
Your Savior takes you in His arms
And quiets all your fears.

Your Savior takes you in His arms
And quiets all your fears.
–David R. Naylor

Saturday, September 1, 2012

A Stitch In Time: September Finishes Linky Party

Do your best every day and your life will gradually expand into satisfying fullness. –Horotio W. Dresser

Welcome to the September Finishes Linky Party! Thank you to those who link their projects up each month and welcome to those who are new here. The party will be open all month, so link up as you go and I'll be around to see what clever and crafty things you've been up to.

Anything finished between 12:00 am on September 1st and 11:59 pm on September 30th {in your time zone} can be added to this linky party. You have through noon {MST} on October 1st to post about it and link up.

To participate in this month's linky party:
• Finish a project {finished as in done, finito, nothing more to add, ready to use/display/give away} with some sort of stitching in it and blog about it or post a photo of it on Flickr.
• Scroll down to see what other bloggers are up to and link to your own finishes.
• Please include the September button in your blog post. Copy the code in the text box below and paste it somewhere in your post. The button is a link back here, so that other bloggers can find their way over and link up too.

• Each time you link up a finished project, you're entered to win the September giveaway, your choice of a charm pack of Everlastings or Merry Medley by Sandy Gervais.

Everlastings or Serenade Charm Pack

• Thank you to The Fat Quarter Shop for sponsoring our giveaway!

The Fine Print {which might be boring but you really should read}:
• Projects must include stitching of some sort. For example: appliqué, crochet, cross-stitch, embroidery, knitting, practical sewing {garment construction, bags, curtains, etc.}, quilting.
• Projects must be completely finished. As in done, finito, nothing more to add, ready to use/display/give away.
• You can pick something new to do, but projects do not have to be started during the month. If you pick up a UFO, Ph.D, WIP and finish it during the month, it counts.
• Finishes must be completed during this month, but you have until noon MST on the 1st of the next month to link your post.
• Post about your finish and then link your specific post {instructions here} above. Links to your blog and not the individual post about your finished project will be deleted.
• Have more than one finish this month? Great! Post about each finish individually and then link the specific posts up separately. Each finish, and therefore each link you add, counts as one entry for this month's giveaway.
• If you've already posted about a finish for this month, there's no need to do a separate post. Just add the button to that post and link up.
• Please copy and paste the code below to include this month's button somewhere in your post {not your sidebar}.

September Finishes

• Don't have a blog? You can link from your flickr account. Just post a picture, include a little note about your finish and a link back here {code included below} in the description. Then join the linky party.

• Make sure to visit a few of the other links and leave them some love {ie, a comment}. A good rule of thumb is to visit two links for every one you include.
• Winner of the sponsored giveaway will be drawn randomly from among the links and announced by 8:00 pm MST on the 3rd of the following month.
• Instructions for making an index page to your finishes can be found here.
• Kindly consider changing your comment settings to the pop-up window option for faster and easier commenting for visitors to your blog. Instructions can be found here.