Thursday, December 30, 2010

Deer Ridge – day 4

More progress…


Doug, the electrician working on new kitchen wiring.


Hey, look there’s a door to the new bathroom.  Helpful, huh?


Laying the last piece of the sub floor in the new kitchen.


Jean, one of our fabulous cooks.  It feels a little strange not being the one to plan the meals and do the cooking but I’m getting used to pretty fast!.

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Deer Ridge – day 3

I stopped at Deer Ridge this morning.  I didn’t think I would see much change since I was there late in the day yesterday but still progress was notable.   IMG_5522

More pipes were soldered,


cement was poured over the new drain pipes in the bathrooms IMG_5521

and walls were being framed as I was there.


In the morning I’ll be joining the crew until Saturday evening.  Tomorrow I’m part of the data entry bunch. 

After that I wonder what I’ll be doing? ? ?


Ashes to Beauty

As much as I hate this part of winter…
slippery driving, snowplows and the road "rust" salt they carry
near white-out conditions not to mention the cold - brrr!
There is still much beauty to the winter season too.
IMG_5436 IMG_5438
IMG_5435 IMG_5439 The hoar frost hanging on the trees & bushes is breathtaking.


I may not have been blogging much the last couple of months but I’ve been busy crafting and quilting.

I made a pattern called “In a Manger” by Pieces from my Heart-Sandy Gervais using a Moda “Adoring” charm pack for a special friend for Christmas.  I bound it with a cute polka dot print fabric I found at JoAnn Fabrics in the perfect colors to complement the charm pack.


I also completed a “Trio of  Joy stars” pattern by Buttermilk Basin.  I did cheat a bit on this.  I used wool but machine appliquéd these instead of by hand.  I’m standing by the thought that hand appliqué is highly over-rated.  I like them just as well and they were done in about 1/4 of the time it would have taken me to sew them by hand.


The pattern showed the stars as pillows but I didn’t need or want any more pillows sitting around so I turned it into a garland instead.  I found the snowflakes that are in between the stars at WalMart of all places.

I also completed a Lil Twister table runner.  I used a Moda Fruitcake charm pack and a border fabric from JoAnn fabrics.  Love that color of green! 

Who would have ever thought that this IMG_5433

could turn out looking like this?

IMG_5455 This was one quick and easy way to make a pinwheel quilt.  There’s a fair bit of waste but that all went in the scrap bin for another project some day.

I also made coasters,


lots of coasters

for gifts for my sisters and DH’s sisters but dufus me forgot to give them to Dan’s family on Sunday when we were together, so if you’re one of Dan’s sisters that reads this (yes that means you, Sandy :) ), you have coasters coming yet.  I also forgot to give his Mom her gift.  I don’t know where my head was on Sunday but obviously not where it should have been. 

Anyway, I saw this tutorial over at Blue Cricket Design and went from there.  I didn’t follow it completely though.  I sanded the edges of the tiles as I thought they were too rough and I sealed them with Clear Coat spray paint instead of an acrylic sealer.  They were a ton of fun to make, super quick and easy, not to mention inexpensive.  Even DH got in on the act.

IMG_5406 Now, on to the next project once I decide what it’s going to be. :)


Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Deer Ridge – Day Two progress

Things are moving along at our Deer Ridge project. 

Watch your step…
The raised floor is being built for the new kitchen.


The new bathrooms are being plumbed and I hear the cement was poured this evening.

There is even data entry going on for the ministry. 

IMG_5519This looks like quite the command center, doesn’t it?

Monday, December 27, 2010

A different kind of project

Those of you who have been following my blog for a few years know that we’ve led construction outreach teams and typically head south right after Christmas to help with the Katrina rebuilding process in New Orleans, Louisiana.  If you’d like to read more about the work we’ve done while there, you can check it out here.

This year we’ve decided to stay local and work at Deer Ridge Ministries.   Deer Ridge provides a much needed Sabbath to pastors and their wives from all over the country at no cost to the pastors.  David & Louise have recently opened a new facility in Freeport, Illinois and were in need of a commercial kitchen so instead of going south, we’re staying local and helping our friends, the Deckers.  Our group will also be installing another full bathroom which will allow them to host another couple during each retreat week which means that many more pastors who can be refreshed and renewed.  How great is that? 

Another prong to this “trip” is it allows people who would like to serve but can’t be gone so far for a length of time, such as Phil (check out his story) to participate.

Today is Day One and this is the room where the new kitchen will be (hopefully) by the end of next week.

IMG_5468 See where they’re cutting into the drywall?  The floor in this area will be raised as high as the cut high so the Deckers won’t need to carry food up a flight of steps.  They’ll be able to wheel their cart right on in.  The Deckers also host meetings and parties as well as cater to supplement the ministry’s income.  And that big hole in the wall will be a set of double doors that leads to/from the garage.  How handy will that be for unloading groceries as well as make the facility handicapped accessible.

IMG_5467 Those legs you see there belong to my sweetie.  He was taking out a gas line at the time and Phil, who I referred to above was up in the crawl space.

I’ll keep you posted on the progress as we go along.

Better late than not at all

I’m a little behind in putting up pics of my Christmas decorations this year.  The decorations have been up since Thanksgiving but I’ve just not gotten around to posting anything about it.  I thought I better do it now before I take everything back down.


I went simple with the table this year. When I need to move it for dinner, just grab and go.


As much of a pain as the stairway garland is to put up, I’m always so glad I went to the effort when it’s all done.  It’s one of my favorite parts of my decorations. 


Santa is tucked back under the cupboards.

IMG_5481Mr. Snowman hangs out on the end of the island.  When we built the house, DH & I went round and round whether we should put in an island or not.  I’m so glad I WON!  I don’t ever want a house without one again.  I love it.IMG_5486

I ended up with this funky colored rooster after my niece’s wedding late this summer.  Every time I looked at him sitting on the counter I smiled.  He’s just plain fun and I couldn’t bear to put him away so I stuck him up on top of the cupboards with some greens for Christmas.  He seems to like it up there.


This was it for a tree for us this year.  We always had a real tree until a few years ago when I got the notion to get an artificial one.  I absolutely hated it.  Not that it was a bad tree but when you’ve had a real tree for 44 years of your life, it just wasn’t the same.  I sold it on Craigslist this year and went with only our smaller trees.  I kind of liked it.  I might get a real at some point again but for now this works well for us. IMG_5488

and a few other nooks….  IMG_5492 IMG_5494 IMG_5496  IMG_5500 IMG_5502Doesn’t everyone have a Christmas tree on the back of their toilet?  or am I just weird like that?  IMG_5506 IMG_5507

I hope you enjoyed your tour!


Saturday, December 25, 2010

Merry Christmas

He will be great,
      be called 'Son of the Highest.'
   The Lord God will give him
      the throne of his father David;
   He will rule Jacob's house forever—
      no end, ever, to his kingdom."

Friday, December 24, 2010

Light my world

A neighbor of ours goes all out every year with the Christmas light display on his farm.  He outlines each building with lights.  It’s just beautiful and very bright.  His lights can be seen from miles away.

It’s a ton of work but it brings enjoyment to so many.



IMG_5454   IMG_5445 IMG_5447 IMG_5449 IMG_5452

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Catching up…

I can’t believe I haven’t posted since the 15th!  Well, actually, I can believe it and wow, can time get away before I even realize it.

I’m not even sure where to start but I’ll try and work my way through everything.

My work place has an annual Holiday Walk which usually takes place at the end of finals week.  Each building on campus puts on the ritz and sets out all kinds of scrumptious food and we wander from building to building and pretty much stuff ourselves sick.  It’s alot of fun, really it is!

Our building usually tries to have a theme.  This year we did “A Miser Christmas” and people dressed up like the heat miser, snow miser, Santa and Mrs. Claus and elves. We had a blast, as usual, putting on the show. 


Don’t they look great?


Mr. & Mrs. Claus


Me & my buddy Santa - complete with his conversational props.   There’s just a tad bit of warped-ness (is that a word?) in the area where I work.  Can you tell?

IMG_5367   I don’t think we’ll ever top the year we did “A Redneck Christmas” but we sure have fun trying.