Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Happiness Project

Lighthouse Alpena, MI

Marina Rodgers City

One activity that makes me very happy is going for long drives and talking. We did that last Saturday. I know that these activities are going to be limited with the increasing gas prices. I like the drives where we don't really have a plan and explore side roads we have never been on. It was a rare sunny February day, too nice to be inside!

Marian, look between the dock uprights and you can see the limestone quarry

I have been working very hard on several quilt projects. I am working on my  quilt book. It is slow going but making progress, however, no pictures to share. I have never tried anything like this so it is all new to me.

Much time has been spent peeling paper off the back of the Civil War Diary Quilt blocks. I have sashing fabrics and I am going to join up those blocks. The Farmers Wife blocks are going to take a back seat to the above projects.

All of these things make me very happy. The two themes are pursuing things that I am passionate about and spending quality time with those that I love.

Moran Iron Works sculpture in Rodgers City park

Friday, February 24, 2012

Simple Living and Happiness Update

just a random picture I took at the trebuchet launch
I have been thinking about taking care of my self this week because I am fighting off a cold. To be happy and have a simple existence I have concentrated on the basics. Things like getting to bed on time, eating right with some veggies, exercising and drinking tons of water. I have had to know when to say when on projects and take a break. I have had to find projects that I can focus on with this stinking cold- not complicated ones. I think I am still going to get the cold full fledged, but I have been pretty satisfied in meeting my goals for the week.

In the simple living department, I have been thinking about kindness and paying it forward. It is simple things that can make some one's day. I have decided that a little kindness goes a long way. You know, things like making coffee when the last cup is taken at work. Or Filling the paper in the copy machine, changing the toilet paper roll and answering the phone when the person who normally answers it is busy. I have also decided that if you can't say anything nice, then don't say anything at all. Kindness, it really is alive and well out there. Sometimes the mean words and actions just weigh heavier on my mind and take longer to let go.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Fat Tuesday

Today is fat Tuesday. I am off schedule with blog posting. Yesterday was President's day and I enjoyed the day off. I worked on several projects. I loaded a customer quilt and started long arming it. I have been peeling paper off my aunts quilt. I have been working on my quilt book. That is moving very slowly. I am testing a pattern and so far it is going together well.

I am NOT going to eat a donut toady. I don't even like the traditional paczki- jelly filled donuts. I am staying on my diet. I have been faithfully exercising and I feel very good about that. I like to think about what I am giving up for life. I am giving up excessive snacking in the evening. I am budgeting a small snack but not what I  have been doing. I have lost a couple of pounds since Jan 1 and I need to kick start that up.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

simple living

morning routine

  •  shower
  •  coffee
  •  computer time
  •  hair and makeup
  •  drop off at school
  •  dishes
  •  load of laundry
  •  sew
  •  read devotional it's time for work!

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Happiness Project

Today is our anniversary! 26 wonderful years. I have no words to say how much my husband means to me.
I love him more today than I did when we said I do. I can't say enough how much I appreciate my husband.

Any secrets? Nope. We still talk about everything, laugh at silly jokes, go to church, eat together, and support each other.

what you do every day matters more than what you do once in a while.-Grethen Ruben of the Happiness Project

Nothing is more true a statement for love!

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Tiny Tuesday

Hill and Valley 46

Farmer's Daughter 32

Home Maker 47

Grape Basket 45

The collection of blocks here are some really pretty ones from the book Farmer's Wife. They are all 6 inch blocks , more or less. I had some problems with Home maker. It has y seam's and I have such problems getting them to fit properly. I love the look of these blocks but the points are wonky and it isn't even close. Oh well, all the y seam block have the same issue, so I am doing the same thing over and over that makes them turn out off. They will be put in the do not use pile I am sure.

I have completed 47 of 110...close to halfway! The dreaded Garden path is next, a similar block gave me tons of trouble...let's see how this one does!

Monday, February 13, 2012

Design Wall Monday

I have been working on several projects recently but none picture moments! Here is a quilt of mine that I finished yesterday. I did a freehand swirl all over it. I love it.

It is squares that were done in a Friendship Triangle Exchange at the local quilt shop. My Mom bought the Friendship Triangle book by Editya Sitar. My quilt turned out bright and bold, I love it.

I have some small blocks to share tomorrow for Tiny Tuesday.

Friday, February 10, 2012

simple living

Keeping things simple takes:

 saying no to over scheduling
 saying no to materialism
 working hard
 playing a bit daily for balance
 exercising routinely for health
creatively expressing myself daily
 being dilligent with the resources that are available
 living withing the our means
 no comparing to how others are living

I ask myself constantly this question when tackling things daily "Does this fit in my life and life's goals?" If it doesn't then I don't allow it to take my most valuable resource- time. When I have to force schedules to mesh and go through multiple mental yoga moves to get something done, it means it is too complicated and doesn't really fit into the time/resources I have at that moment and I pass on it if possible.

Above all simple living is taking time to share a smile with family and friends, to see the beauty of nature around you and having moments to tell yourself how wonderful things are.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

The Happiness Project

I thought I would ponder what the author of The Happiness Project calls Personal Commandments. These are the statements that you tell yourself often, the statements that are your mission and your personal goals.

I really like several of the following these are my own Commandments:
Be Vicki-don't try to fit in the mold of anyone else or any one's expectations
Don't let the reactions of small people rule your actions
Do it right and well the first time
Use a calendar and take notes, I will never remember

Here are some good ones that I read on the Projects web site (see side bar for link)

One day at a time
It is time to love and look after myself ( so I can love and look after others)
Do what you don't like to do first
Take things in stride

They are very good. Hmmm, I am sure I can come up with more. I will add as I go today. What are some of yours?

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Super Bowl Sunday!!!

I really enjoy foot ball and the big game is today. I enjoy the silly commercials and the time to have some chili with family and friends. We will make a navy bean chicken chili. And it is a weekend that the diet has been abandoned for a bit....chips and dip, pop etc.

Yesterday was a winter dance for my son and his girlfriend. We drove him over to Alpena then we went for  a ride and discovered this scenic lookout and memorial to lumberjacks. My great grandfather was a lumberjack and told stories of his days logging. We searched for the sawmill in Cheboygan when I was a kid and eventually one became a museum. He told of driving horses across the frozen straights of Mackinaw and the ice cracking. He said he let the horses go and crawled all the way to shore. I really appreciate it now, years later. Note, it is unseasonably warm and sunny today! No snow... I could get used to this.

We ended the day with shopping and dinner before we went to pick up. I had a great time on my date.

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Simple Living

Simple cleaning is the topic this week. I use several old fashioned cleaners and I would like to hear ideas on other cleaners.

  • white vinegar and water to mop the floors
  • washing soda to clean sinks and counter tops followed by using a Mr Clean eraser
  • microfiber cloth to dust
  • Mr Clean eraser to wash walls
  • I do buy Green Clean spray to wash the tub. I am looking for a less smelly/caustic alternative to clean here and tackle grout
  • bleach wipes for quick clean up and disinfection of surfaces
  • Murphy's oil soap to wash wood work
  • Lemon oil a few times a year to clean and protect wood work and tables
  • Laundry soap made from Fels Naptha, borax and washing soda

Do you have any simple, cheap and less caustic ideas for cleaning up? I would love to hear them. I have received several ideas on cleaning from BBC's "How Clean is your House." They have books as well as You tube videos. I love this show and it helped me to see the bacterias that grow in a home and want to eradicate them. It is great to see all those petri dishes full of microorganisms growing on them. :)

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Happiness Project

February is the month of romance, Valentines, my anniversary, Super bowl, Kilted dinner and Fun!

I am looking forward to it. I have plans to be more social and the weather should allow it. I am ready to shake off the January blahs. The winter has had lots of breaks with nice weather. I just need to get cracking on projects and organizing. I still haven't sorted through my clothes. I have things on the porch that needs to be packed up and stored. I think I have several items that should go in to a garage sale... the house needs to be pared down. I had someone in the house yesterday that had never been here and I saw the little piles of stuff through fresh eyes! Gotta move that stuff :)

Happiness in February is a month to continue to make the house streamlined and spending more time with loved ones. I have a date this Saturday!