Thursday, September 30, 2010

Zoe's Baptism

This past Sunday, our newest grandchild, Zoe Madeline, was baptized.  There was a nice gathering of family to celebrate with her.

Along with her mom, dad and big sister Tess, we gathered with aunts, uncles and cousins at St. Patrick's Church in St. Charles, Illinois.

Sharing a photo of Zoe with her parents, sister and Godparents, Morgan and Matthew.
God Bless you little sweet Zoe!

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Where Does The Time Go?

It's been more then a week since my last blog post.  Gosh, days have been so busy!  I sit here trying to remember where this last week has gone.

Most of the time was spend sewing curtains.  Worked on curtains for the bedroom windows for our two youngest granddaughters, plus kitchen curtains. Simple panels for all the rooms.
Somehow the measurement of the fabric for Tess's room was inaccurate.  Because of that I had to make some adjustments.  I had to add muslin to the top for the rod pocket and also the bottom.  Not wanting to have a plain white strip at the bottom, I decided to back felt with Thermo Web's Heat n Bond Ultrahold and then die-cut flowers and leaves with my Sizzix dies for my own iron-on embellishments.  They added just the right touch to the panels.

I don't get really fancy when sewing curtains, I let the fabric, the design and the colors make the statement.  More curtain sewing on the calendar for Matthew's house up next and than some glitzy curtains for Maddie's room.

Will be sharing a mixed media wall hanging to be donated for a fundraiser coming up in October.  Several other projects in the works.  Making pillowcases for hospitalized children with our quilting group.  Will be working on Halloween costumes for the little ones.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

A Touch Of Autumn

After the hottest summer that I can remember, there has been that change in the air that I absolutely love!  It's funny that as August ended and September began, so did our weather.  What a pleasure to open the windows and doors and enjoy the cooler breezes.

Immediately, all things summer were quickly put away.  Even outside, hanging baskets of petunias and planters of geraniums and impatiens were replaced with fall shades of mums.

The annual visit to an area pumpkin farm will be an upcoming trip with the family, but for now, my collection of "faux" pumpkins have made a return.  I like having them around to display early in the season along with other "fall" decorations.  So we are already into the third week of September and the colors of Autumn are being displayed all over the house in small ways.
I like to add several small additions when I decorate.  I think a little "splash" of items "here & there" are the best for me.  So out comes the "fall" colored quilt and other soft coverings.  You'll find lots of pumpkins and seasonal sprays.  Baskets of gourds and Indian corn will come after the visit to the farm stands.  There will be a few "Halloween" related items around the house till the end of October, but not many.  Since all the kids are grown we have left the scary stuff to them to do at their houses.  There will be one "jack-o-lantern" on the front stoop for Halloween, how else will be enjoy our roasted pumpkin seeds.
Looking forward to the seasonal baking of pies, breads and cookies.  I'll share some of those with you as the weeks of Autumn go by.  Trips to the  farm stands in the area, trips to the woodlands nearby to gather some dried plants for displays and trips to area barn sales and antique shops all are waiting to happen.

Check in from time to time and follow our trip through Autumn!

Sunday, September 12, 2010


My youngest son Matthew loves to play the guitar.  Many years ago he started saving his money to buy himself a used guitar because he had a strong desire to learn how to make music.  So through the years he has sold and bought several guitars and today is the owner of several different ones.

His desire to play and perform started in high school.  Once a week he and fellow musicians would find their way into the city for "open mic night" at a place called "NO EXIT" cafe.  It was there that Matthew met Pat Hall.  Pat was the host of the open mic evenings and would perform himself at some point.  It was always fun to listen to him sing and play the keyboards.
Pat became somewhat of a "music mentor" to Matthew.  They remained in touch.  They would play together at various functions in and around the city.  We would make a point to go to see them perform because it was always a good time.  To watch Pat's fingers attack those keys was amazing!

Check out the site with photos and tributes to Pat Hall.
Back in January, Matthew informed us that he was planning on playing a gig with Pat before he had to call it quits because of his health.  We were informed that Pat had cancer of the stomach and it wasn't looking good.  A week before the last gig, Matthew got word the Pat was in the hospital and he took a turn for the worse.

So Pat's request was to be cremated and his ashes scattered at somewhere in the city.  On Sunday, September 19th, that will happen at Loyola Beach,  along with fellow musicians gathering together to play music in tribute to Pat.
Matthew had this blue guitar cable that belonged to Pat in his possession and asked if there was anyway that the cable could be made into bracelets. I tried a few different ways to make something wearable and came up with what you see in the photo.   So these "memory" bracelets will be given to friends and fellow musicians that played with Pat.  We thank you for some wonderful music Pat ... we will always remember you and those crazy fingers on the keyboards!

Don't Look Back - Written by Pat just before the Presidential election.  Matthew is playing guitar.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Good Times

                   (This was taken while the photographer was trying to get us all to look at him.)
Where do I begin?  What a fun time we had with everyone this past week-end.  The family gathered from Seattle, Portland, San Diego, Denver, in and around the Twin Cities, Connecticut, Rhinelander, Southside Chicago and the surrounding suburbs of Chicago,  to celebrate Gramma Arendt's 90th birthday.  As family arrived on Friday we tried catching up with those we haven't seen for a while.  It didn't take long for the party to begin!

On Saturday morning twenty family members had a "golf tournament" of their own.  Gramma shared "craft time" with the two youngest grandchildren and the great-grandkids.  They all decorated visors with their names and other fun embellishments.  After they were done, each received a "goodie bag" from her and had photos taken with their visors.  A few of the ladies took advantage of the spa, some went to the indoor pool (it was sunny, but a bit windy and chilly for the outside pool), others took a nap.  In the afternoon the games began.  I missed out of much of this, but I understand it was fun and only ended with one injury ... Uncle Dave (who is 40 something). Thank heaven there is a doctor in the family to put his elbow back in place!

(Gramma with the Great-Grandchildren)


Friday, September 3, 2010

Big Week-End & Celebration Ahead

Tomorrow we are heading to Lake Lawn Resort near the little Wisconsin town of Delavan.  Family is gathering this Labor Day week-end for the 90th birthday of my mother-in-law.  I fondly call her "Gram".
She is the mother of nine children, the grandmother of twenty-one and the great-grandmother of eighteen, with the nineteenth expected in December. Adding the spouses of her children and grandchildren the total family members will be 70. Along with another dozen relatives and friends, it will be quite a group.

 She's quite a lady!  I'll be sharing some moments from the occasion later after the celebration.

We have put together a scrapbook of pages, created by each family member to present to her.  I am sharing my personal page.  This page shows copies of only a few "recipes" that are from Gram's collection that she has shared with me.  In the note, I explain how these recipes, along with her "recipe for life" have filled all of us.