Saturday, January 30, 2010

Lots of Good Stuff!

It has been an absolutely WONDERFUL week!  On Thursday, my sister and I went to Common Threads to Party with Patrick.  If you've never been to one of these parties, I HIGHLY recommend them.  We had SO much fun!!  I can't WAIT to go back!  If your local quilt shop doesn't do this, just click on the link for information, take it to your shop, and ask them to sign up.  You won't be disappointed!   Here are some pictures from our fun afternoon:
 
I have to tell you that I absolutely hate having my picture taken, but we had to document this fun day!  Can you guess which sister is older?  LOL  I'm not going to tell you!  We could have gotten the borders put on, but we did gab a lot with everyone that day (imagine that!), so we didn't get that part all done.  I just LOVE them.  Get it?  LOL

The next great thing of the week is our sister (Amanda) moved back from Germany with her son and daughter.  Her husband is now in Iraq for the next year (please keep all the soldiers in your prayers), so she moved back to be close with family while Jay is in Iraq.  Since we couldn't be at the airport with everyone else when they arrived (because we were 'partying'...LOL), we went to see her during lunch time Friday.  And here are some pictures of Amanda and her family:

 
My niece (Haley) is the taller girl on the right.   Vinnie (my nephew) said to me after I took his picture and looked at it, "Wow, that's perfect!".  It just doesn't get any better than that!  LOL  It's so nice to have them home.

I hope you all find a lot to be grateful for today and everyday!  Until next time, keep smiling!!  Tuna burger recipe will be coming up in the next blog!!

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

My New Project





I decided I'm nuts.  I know...I know...you all already knew that, but I've been having a hard time coming to terms with how crazy I really am.  I'm already busy and what did I decide to do?  Join in the fun of an online quilt group to make a pinwheel quilt (link on the right side of my blog).  But Rachel, who is the 'leader of the pack' seems like so much fun and this quilt is AWESOME, so I just had to jump in!  I hope you like the fabric I picked out for it!  I'll keep you posted on the progress with pictures as the quilt takes shape. 

Okay...now for some fun stuff...and my husband is probably going to kill me if he ever reads my blog, but I just can't pass this up!  (love you honey!!)  I downloaded Photoshop Elements 8 trial version to see how I would like it.  Well guess what...I'M IN LOVE WITH IT!!  I've been having so much fun!  I would share a picture I did of my sister, but she was giving the camera a naughty gesture and I just shouldn't post it.  :o)  So, with that said, my husband gets to be the lucky victim!  Here is is with my youngest son's (Justin) girlfriend.


Yep...he looks like a stinker.  So I couldn't let this go.  I had to do this:


 It's just never a dull moment in the Smith household.  Someone's always stirring up something...good or bad.  But just so my sister doesn't feel left out, I did want to share this picture of her dressed like a 1970's Mary Kay lady for a party I had:



Yep...I'm proud.  And the gal in the pink is our cousin, Mary.  Do you think she looks a little scared?  She's also one of our quilting buddies.  Well that's all for tonight!  Hope you had a good chuckle.  I'm going to go to bed with a belly ache, because I kept cracking up loading these pictures!  Hhhmmm...I better make sure no one gets a hold of a bad picture of me......oh boy..........

Monday, January 18, 2010

Cindy's Tuna Casserole

Here it is!  My very first, original recipe.  I hope you all enjoy it as much as my family does!  This recipe makes quite a bit, because my family likes leftovers to take in their lunch.

1 can cream of chicken soup
1 can cheddar cheese soup
3/4 c sour cream
1 cup half & half
1 large can of tuna in water - drained
Juice of 1 lemon
1 1/2 tsp dill weed
1 TBS red pepper flakes (more or less depending on desired hotness)
1 1/2 c shredded cheddar cheese
1 lb egg noodles - cooked & drainedFresh mozzarella cheese
Keebler Club Crackers - I crush enough to cover the casserole. For this recipe it was just about 1 1/2 packages from 1 box
4 TBS melted butter
Salt & pepper to taste

Preheat oven to 350.  Mix first nine ingredients together then pour over noodles.  Once noodles and mixture are folded together, place into two casserole dishes.  Cover each dish with the fresh mozzarella then the crush Keebler crakers.  Drizzle with butter and bake for 45 - 55 minutes until golden brown and bubbly. 

Here is the finished product!


If you try this, let me know what you think!  It's not an every day meal, but for a comfort meal on a Sunday, it's great!  Enjoy!

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Give If You Can

It just breaks my heart to see the disaster that's occurred in Haiti.  If at all possible, please donate whatever amount you can.  This site accepts PayPal http://haitiandisasterfund.com/  If you don't have a PayPal account and just want to make a credit card donation, you can do so through this site  https://secure.oxfamamerica.org/site/Donation2?idb=1116492735&df_id=3560&3560.donation=form1  Even if it's only $5.00 it WILL make a difference!  God Bless you all!

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Great Thoughts

Hello!

Not much for me to say since these words pretty much capture everything.  I received this in an email and thought I would share it with all of you.  Enjoy!!

HANDBOOK 2010

Health
:

1.       Drink plenty of water.
2.       Eat breakfast like a king, lunch like a prince and dinner like a beggar.
3.       Eat more foods that grow on trees and plants and eat less food that is manufactured in plants..
4.       Live with the 3 E's -- Energy, Enthusiasm and Empathy
5.       Make time to pray.
6.       Play more games
7.       Read more books than you did in 2009
.
8.       Sit in silence for at least 10 minutes each day
9.       Sleep for 7 hours.
10.    Take a 10-30 minutes walk daily. And while you walk, smile.

Personality
:

11.    Don't compare your life to others. You have no idea what their journey is all about.
12.    Don't have negative thoughts or things you cannot control. Instead invest your energy in the positive present moment.
13.    Don't over do. Keep your limits.
14.    Don't take yourself so seriously. No one else does.
15.    Don't waste your precious energy on gossip.
16.    Dream more while you are awake
17.    Envy is a waste of time. You already have all you need..
18.    Forget issues of the past. Don't remind your partner with His/her mistakes of the past. That will ruin your present happiness.
19.    Life is too short to waste time hating anyone. Don't hate others.
20.    Make peace with your past so it won't spoil the present.
21.    No one is in charge of your happiness except you.
22.    Realize that life is a school and you are here to learn.  Problems are simply part of the curriculum that appear and fade away like algebra class but the lessons you learn will last a lifetime.
23.    Smile and laugh more.
24.    You don't have to win every argument. Agree to disagree...

Society
:

25.    Call your family often.
26.    Each day give something good to others.
27.    Forgive everyone for everything..
28.    Spend time w/ people over the age of 70 & under the age of  6.
29.    Try to make at least three people smile each day.
30.    What other people think of you is none of your business.
31.    Your job won't take care of you when you are sick. Your friends will. Stay in touch.

Life
:

32.    Do the right thing!
33.    Get rid of anything that isn't useful, beautiful or joyful.
34.    GOD heals everything.
35.    However good or bad a situation is, it will change..
36.    No matter how you feel, get up, dress up and show up.
37.    The best is yet to come..
38.    When you awake alive in the morning, thank GOD for it.
39.    Your Inner most is always happy. So, be happy.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

The Winter That Never Ends

I'm sorry I haven't been blogging lately.  Life has a way of just keeping me busy!  But that's a good thing.  I took some pictures this morning because the sun was hitting the frost on the trees just right.  However, I couldn't capture what I was seeing thru my lens, which is a little disappointing. Here are just a couple of the pictures I took.  It's -9 this morning, but the sun was shining, which always makes me happy no matter how cold it is!


I took the picture below earlier in the week when we were hit with another snow storm.  As you can see, our lane was pretty full, so we couldn't get out until it was dug out.  But looking at the forecast for next week, Wednesday is supposed to be sunny and 34!  THAT is something to celebrate!!



I follow some inspirational people on Twitter - just because I try to keep as much positive words coming at me as I can to  help keep my mind focused on the the good things.  I stay away from the news and stuff like that, not because I'm in denial, but because life it too short to listen to all the negativity.  Here's a quote that was sent on Twitter today:
"My responsibility, our responsibility as lucky Americans, is to try to give back to this country as much as it has given us..." C. Powell

I like that.  I like to give back.  And it doesn't have to be about the money.  It can be about your time.  Someone once told me that if you don't have money to give, then give the gift of kindness and/or time.  Open the door for someone.  Offer time at an animal shelter, homeless shelter, domestic abuse shelter.  Say a nice word to someone you've never met.  You never know, that nice word might be the only wonderful thing they've heard in a while.  Sometimes time is worth way more than a dollar amount. My challenge to myself and to others who read this is: Everyday during this next week, at least once a day, do one nice, unexpected thing.  Whether it be the gift of your time, healing an old broken relationship, paying for a cup of coffee for the person behind you in line....whatever you think at that moment will make a difference.  Of course, it doesn't have to end when the week is over.  We can all carry on if we choose!  :o)  HAVE FUN!!!!

Friday, January 1, 2010

Happy New Year and New Quilting!!

Happy New Year!!!  I can't help but feel that 2010 is going to be a fantastic year!!  Let's see...2009 gave us a challenge.  My husband lost his job of 24 years and now has a job that isn't permanent at the moment.  But the good news on that is he really likes what he's doing, so that is a plus.  He really is a great man and I know God has an awesome plan in store for him!  Our oldest son, Jesse, starts his new job on Monday.  He's really excited, and very deserving of a new path in life.  Justin is just an overall great young man and has some good plans going as well.  And me...well, I'm planning on quilting away!  I can't say that I really make resolutions.  I used to..only to not see them out.  So I just try to make every day a good one and make a difference somewhere along the line.  I don't know that I always do, but I at least always try.  I'm just SO excited to start this year!!  Life is good!!  So, in order to keep myself inspired, I'm posting some quilts that I've done.  I hope you enjoy!!

This is the Block of the Month The Cotton Shop in Muscatine, Iowa sponsored in 2007.  It's the Underground Railroad.  I really enjoyed doing this one.  Feel free to visit their website at www.cottonshoponline.com.  It's a wonderful quilt shop!

This is the Bullseye quilt I made my husband for Christmas.  There were four of us quilters (my sister, Sarah, my cousin, Mary, and a fellow quilter, Kathy) that contributed on the blocks.  We each did 48 blocks, then quartered them, and passed out between use so all our blocks could be intermixed.  I love this quilt!

This is also another one of my favorites.  Our quilt guild (The Muscatine Melon Patchers) did a row robin and this is what I got back.  I love how the ladies did their rows!

These are just a couple of fun little quilts I did for the 4th of July season.  More to come on these because I love to be patriotic! :o)