Thursday, December 31, 2015

Gifts I made....

Here are a few pictures of gifts that I made this year for Christmas. I made quite a few pillowcases, the tractor one is for my grandfather, while the remaining two were for my husband. I wasn't looking for the Doctor Who fabric but while at the fabric store I saw it and couldn't resist. Both my husband and I are fans. I also just bought a regular kitchen towel and sewed fabric on it as a gift. Did you make any gifts?

Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Crafty Gifts Received for Christmas

I received several crafty gifts that I had on my wishlist. I have been wanting some of these items for quite awhile and really excited to get started. I hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas/holiday!  For next year I have joined a few stitch a longs, and will be showing some items I hope to complete.

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Midwest Readathon Challenge 2016 - SIGNUP



I haven't seen once of these before and thought I would create a reading challenge for authors born in the Midwest. There are really no rules to this:

    • Read books from Jan. 1 through Dec. 31 
    • Read any book by an author
    • Books/Authors can be famous or not
    • Any length of book
    • Read any amount of books from a state(s)
    • Once a book has been read post a review 
    • Post progress monthly on the 1st
    Here are the list of Midwest states; Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, South Dakota, and Wisconsin. Now I know there are sometimes disputes with what states people consider the Midwest to be, so you can add Ohio, Indiana, etc. or whatever states you consider to be in the Midwest.

    Here is my reading list:

    • Illinois - Homesteader by Oscar Micheaux
    • Iowa - State Fair by Phil Stong
    • Kansas - In Our Town by William Allen White
    • Michigan - The Iron Trail by Rex Beach
    • Minnesota - Main Street by Sinclair Lewis
    • Missouri - The Adventures of Tom Sawyer by Mark Twain
    • Nebraska - Whilte the Patient Slept by Mignon Eberhart
    • North Dakota - Middle C by William H. Gass
    • South Dakota - A Long Way from Home by Tom Brokow
    • Wisconsin - Little House in the Big Woods by Laura Ingalls Wilder
    Midwest Readathon Challenge 2016

    Tuesday, December 22, 2015

    Bout of Books Jan '16 Readathon

    BoB15-200x200 I have either a hit or miss with these readathons but plan on participating again. I forget usually to do quite a bit of the updates. Here is the needed information for this read-a-thon;

    The Bout of Books read-a-thon is organized by Amanda @ On a Book Bender and Kelly @ Reading the Paranormal. It is a week long read-a-thon that begins 12:01am Monday, January 4th and runs through Sunday, January 10th in whatever time zone you are in. Bout of Books is low-pressure. There are challenges, giveaways, and a grand prize, but all of these are completely optional. For all Bout of Books 15 information and updates, be sure to visit the Bout of Books blog. - From the Bout of Books team

    I am going to be reading the following:

    1. Larkrise to Candleford by Flora Thompson
    2. Homesteader by Oscar Micheaux
    3. Catherine and other writings by Jane Austen
    4. The Memory Weaver by Jane Kirkpatrick
    5. Treasure Island by Robert Louis Stevenson
    6. The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett
    7. The Outsiders by S.E. Hinton
    Obviously I do not believe that I can complete all of these books, but I want to at least finish two preferably three. 

    Tuesday, December 15, 2015

    Book Challenge

       Since last year I signed up for so many book challenges, which did not even finish one, I only plan on signing up for this one. It does coincide with my Classics Club list, which I have until August 2017 to finish. I am not going to pick all 12 categories for this challenge, as I am only picking books that I already have that fit a category.

    Here are my choices:
    1. Treasure Island by Robert Louis Stevenson
    2. Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett
    3. North and South by Elizabeth Gaskell
    4. War and Peace by Leo Tolstoy
    9. Main Street by Sinclair Lewis
    10. Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck
    11. The Outsiders by S.E. Hinton

    If you want to see all of the categories and rules follow here.

    Wednesday, December 9, 2015

    New dish for breakfast or dinner...

    I decided to make a new dish that would be easy and not that much work. We had one onion, a few potatos and then two packages of smoked turkey sausage. So what is one going to do? Of course put it all together! I did wish we had two onions instead of just one. Since I used a cast iron skillet I made sure to cut up all of my ingredients first, as once the skillet is hot it can cook things pretty fast. I made sure to cut up all of the ingredients pretty small, and actually I used too much sausage. Then I put a little vegetable oil in the pan and then seasoned it all with salt and pepper. Next time if we have green or red peppers I will add that, and perhaps some rosemary as well.

    Tuesday, December 8, 2015

    Starting On The Letters....

    for this cross stitch project, that once complete it will be hung up in the kitchen. There will be a rooster and the saying Good Morning. I hope to work on this more in the next month.

    Monday, December 7, 2015

    Number 19 is the winner!


    The winner for this Classics Club Spin #11 was number 19! So I will be reading Larkrise to Candleford by Flora Thompson. There is a television series somewhat based on the books (which Larkrise to Candleford is a triology all in one) which is based on her own experiences of being a postmistress in a small village in England during the early 1900's.  I have heard that the book is quite different, I did start to read it a few years ago, but didn't get too far. In regards to the small part I had read of the book previously it was mostly about the description and every day life of the small village but not that much on any dialogue. That doesn't bother me, but like I said since I haven't read that much of it perhaps it changes in time. I do have a somewhat rare copy of this book as my version is a hardback with lovely pictures/paintings in the book. Once I do my review I will perhaps post a picture of it. I am excited about this book and love the television series. 

    Sunday, December 6, 2015

    The Battle of Pizza Sauces!

    I made my first homemade Stromboli the other day, it is like a calzone for those that do not know, but no sauce is put inside it. Normally I make my own homemade pizza sauce but I wasn't in the mood to do that, as there is a lot of leftovers of the sauce.  So, they only had two different brands of pizza sauce at the store, and not knowing which one was better, I figured I would just get a jar of each. We could have our own little taste test. A battle of the sauces!

    Normally, I prefer Classico pasta sauce over prego (although I think both are better than Ragu). So I was surprised that we both preferred the Prego pizza sauce over the Classico version. The Classico actually had way too much herbs, so much that I couldn't taste that much of the tomatos. The Stromboli dough that I made was really easy and didn't take too long. I put pepporini, salami, provolone cheese, dried oregano and dried basil in it. We ate half of the Stromboli the first night and had the leftovers yesterday.

    Friday, December 4, 2015

    Classics Club Spin Eleven!

     The Classics Club is having another spin! You have until Monday December 7th in order to join and list your 20 books. Then once the winning number has been announced then you have until Feb. 1, 2016 to finish and review that book. I have enjoyed previous spins and sometimes haven't gotten to finish the book, but this time I think that I will have plenty of time to do that. Here is my list! Join it is a lot of fun!

    1. Adventures of Huckleberry Finn
    2. Treasure Island
    3. Kidnapped
    4. Wives and Daughters
    5. The Secret Garden
    6. Little Women
    7. War and Peace
    8. Little Dorrit
    9. Adventures of Tom Sawyer
    10. North and South
    11. Northanger Abbey
    12. Eight Cousins
    13. Barnaby Rudge
    14. The House of the Dead
    15. Rights of Man
    16. Five Little Peppers and How They Grew
    17. Poor Folk
    18. House of Mirth
    19. Larkrise to Candleford
    20. The Pioneers

    Sunday, November 29, 2015

    A Little Accomplished...

    I wasn't able to get as much done as I had wanted on the cross stitch item, and never did work more on the English Paper Piecing quilt. I have been sick the last day or so, I hope to then make up for that during this week.

    Saturday, November 28, 2015

    Black Friday

    Today or yesterday to be exact once this post will be up for view, I am not shopping but spending time at home and having leftovers, watching football and working on some craft projects. Here are some of the photos of my latest progress and where I am starting today, perhaps I won't get too far but you never know.

    Friday, November 27, 2015


    Yesterday it being Thanksgiving while I live, I made sure we had a good dinner. I made the turkey in the slow cooker, with a rub this time instead of a marinade. Unfortunately, it didn't have much flavor, so next time I will go back with the marinade. I had homemade dinner rolls, although they weren't the traditional kind. Sweet potatos with marshmellows and mashed potatos with sage, green beans with salt pepper and a little bit of butter. Summer sausage, cheese and crackers as a appetizer/snack. For the dessert I made a chocolate pie.

    The pie needed to set longer but we wanted to go ahead and start eating it. Our cat of course wanted some food, normally he only gets his dried cat food for the rest of the year, but during this time we give him a little turkey. He liked it and after that was asleep for about five hrs off and on.

    Perhaps it was a little bit of too much activity for him, lol.

    Friday, November 20, 2015

    Random Quilt Mistake

    So I started making this English Paper Piecing quilt without using a pattern, and messed up one the placement in some of the rows. I tried to correct and then found out I was making the same mistake, considering this is all done by hand I wasn't going to go back and fix it all. So what have I decided to due is every once and awhile have a random mistake so then technically it doesn't look like any of it was a mistake, hopefully. We shall see.

    Saturday, November 14, 2015

    Any Progress On Crafts Is Good

    I haven't gotten too much on this cross stitch gift for my sister, but I figure any progress is better than none. Here are the pictures below from the last time I posted. I have also worked quite a bit of work done on the EPP hexagon quilt I am working on, but will post about that tomorrow.

    Sunday, October 18, 2015

    I didn't get far at all...

     On the Dewey's 24 hour Readathon. I had a exam and then later on in the day had to watch my favorite college football team play. Then I saw on tv that some of the Harry Potter movies were playing, and then it was kind of all downhill from there after watching two movies. I also made some homemade soup and homemade rolls for dinner. I did read about 30 pages though, I guess that is better than none, not as much as I would have originally liked though. I hope to read more today of the Hostage Taker, and yesterday I did not read any other book than this one. Now I am about halfway done, it is interesting so far, although I think I have figured something out that the main character hasn't yet in the book. We shall see though.

    Saturday, October 17, 2015

    Late to the Readathon!

    24hrreading2-thumb  I am late in joining the Dewey's 24-Hour Readathon as it started a few hours ago. Somehow I totally missed that this was going to start today. I thought I had previously signed up to get emails in regards to when this readathon is one, but apparently that was not the case. It wouldn't have changed my starting the readathon late today anyways, as I had a test that was the priority today. Now, that is accomplished I plan on at least doing some reading today. There is no way that I will get any of these books finished today, as I have only started two of them, I figure though any progress is better than none.

    Saturday, October 10, 2015

    The Weekend and my thoughts on craft stores...

    Currently, this weekend I am watching some college football but other then that I am going to do some homework and studying for my latest upcoming test. I might read a little as well, not sure which book though. Every once in awhile I have an issue of what book to pick, normally these is because I want to read multiple books at the same time. I think perhaps I might end up picking the book out of a hat or see which one is due at the library first. What do you do in this situation? I haven't been in the mood to craft lately, mostly this is because of illness, but not sure how to get my crafty bug back. I need to work on a cross stitch project as well as a English Paper Piecing lapghan quilt as well. There are two local mom and pop shops that have closed, which is really sad as now there really is only the big box location now. One was just entirely for quilting the other I loved and is where I got my sewing machine. They had yarn for crochet/knitting/weaving, all things cross stitch and tons and tons of all things quilting. The store had been in business for more than 25 years but she the owner decided to retire, less than a month later the other quilt store after 10 years decided to retire as well. Now my local mom and pop cross stitch store is an hour away in good traffic, which is usually a rarity, but that is all they have no other items besides cross stitch. The big box stores usually have a very small section or not section at all of some of the crafts I do. I think if I ever opened a shop it would need to appeal to various crafters, because not only would you draw up more business, but I love a shop that has various craft items for those of us who like more than one type of craft. What are your thoughts?

    Monday, September 28, 2015

    It's Monday What Are You Reading? 9/28/15

    1 I did get one book finished and started another. What have you been reading lately? I hope a book that was good!


    Product Details

    This book I learned quite a bit about the way Hangman's and their families during the mid 1600's were treated and thought of, basically they were shunned by society. The author of this book ancestors were in fact the Kuisl's, who were for centuries the hangmen of a village in Bavaria called Schongau. This book is the first in a series about his ancestors, and of course some fiction based characters and events, at the end of the book the author does a good job of explaining what is fiction and not, etc. This book focuses on Jakob Kuisl and his family, when a little boy is killed the town aldermen council (landowners/gentlemen/rich people) decides that it most be due to a witch. Jakob Kuisl doesn't believe this and tries to find out who is causing problems in the town and killing orphans. No one wants this event to turn into a witch hunt like years previously in the late 1500's were 70 women and children were burned for witchcraft, including aldermen's wives. No one is really sure why the novel is called The Hangman's Daughter, while she is a chracter in the book and more so in the last part, it is mostly about her father. I have heard some people complain about the translation as this book thinking to much modern language was used, it is originally written in German. I know some people wanted it written more in the language from back then, but I do think then that today's audience that may turn people away, although I wouldn't have minded if it was more in the original language. Since though we do not write or speak as they did back then I am sure it would be much harder to write a book. Anyways, I give this book 4 out of 5 I did think it was a little too long but I thought it had quite a few twists and turns.

    Currently Reading:

    Product Details

    I started reading this on Saturday and it is pretty interesting so far. It is the first book of a  historical fiction series which takes place during the early 1000 AD years. The main character is Emma of Normandy, whose brother is the Duke, and in order to form an alliance againgst the Vikings she is married to the King of England. You also get the viewpoints of several main historical people as well. Quite a bit of the histoical facts are from the Anglo-Saxon Chronicles that was written later on in the life of Emma.

    Sunday, September 27, 2015

    Banned Books Week!

    Defend the Freedom to Read. It

    Tomorrow starts the week of Banned Books Week. I am a person that feels strongly no book should ever be banned, no matter what the subject, theme, etc. You don't want to read a certain book, that is fine, there are several in my lifetime that I will never read, but don't limit that or push that on someone else. Everyone has their own tastes in books.

    So what book am I going to read for this week? I am not sure but I will be picking a classic. There are now 97 books that were once banned and are now considered classics such as;

    Of Mice and Men
    The Grapes of Wrath
    To Kill A Mockingbird
    Gone With The Wind
    The Call of the Wild
    For Whom The Bell Tolls
    The Lord of the Flies
    etc., etc., If you want to see the complete list of classics here it is.

    Friday, September 25, 2015

    Penguin Random House

      At my local library a representative from Penguin Random House publishing company visited. We received a free tote bag and a book with a few chapters to six upcoming books. Some of the books now have been published and others haven't. After I read this small book with the chapters I will review my thoughts and a small description of what each book will be. They also had a powerpoint that she talked about sixteen books or so that recently and/or soon will be published.  There was about eight books that I overall want to read, and a few of them are part of a series, so I will need to read the first few books involved in those. I haven't posted much crafts lately but haven't been feeling well and I don't like to work on crafts during that time. I have been reading more instead. Later this upcoming week I hope to post a review of The Hangman's Daughter.