Posted in donations, life, purses, Quilting, sewing

The Giving Store Donation


One of the things our local volunteer service group supports is The Giving Store. Last year The Giving Store provided over 400 local children the opportunity to ‘shop’ for presents for their family members. Purchasing these presents come from the proceeds of a Spring and Fall rummage sale of used items donated by the community throughout the year, a Christmas in July luncheon ticket sales and donations, and new items donated for the children’s shopping event.

I have donated a quilt in the past but this year I will be donating wrist purses. I am committed to making twenty but since I got an early start this year I will try to come up with more. You may notice some familiar fabrics as I have used most in other quilt projects.

Hope the children and the recipients enjoy the purses as much as I have enjoyed making them.

Thank you for visiting with me.





Posted in block of the week, family, Grandma's Kitchen, Quilting, sewing

Grandma’s Kitchen BOW blocks #11 & 12


Block #11 of  Pat Sloan’s Grandma’s Kitchen Blocks is called Peppermint Swirls and the corresponding memory  is for candy dishes. Mammaw Cooper kept a candy dish but instead of candy it was filled with buttons. She wasn’t one that had a sweet tooth but often we would have a fruit cobbler or pie for Sunday dinner. Sometimes we even had a yellow cake with chocolate icing.

Block #12 is called Kitchen Door. My memories of the kitchen door was from my Aunt Monnie’s house. She had a wooden door with windows and it was called the back door. It led out of the kitchen to the back porch. The cistern that held the our water was located at the left of the porch and the porch was built up to the cistern so we could draw the water without going into the yard. This was very handy if it was raining or icy. Our garden was located only a short distance from the back porch so when we gathered vegetables they were carried to the porch and readied for the kitchen. This system could not have worked any better if it was designed by a time management expert.

My aunt told me that when it came time to name any of my children to stand on the porch and yell out the potential name about 10 times at the top of my lungs. If the name rolled out easily, that would be a good name for the child. Her logic was that you would be yelling that name a lot and it should be easy to ‘holler’. I just shared this little story with my daughter-in-law while she was hosting us during our hurricane evacuation. Unfortunately, now the parents call the kids in with cell phone….I miss the old days. 🙂


Posted in family, hurricane, life, Life with Sami, people

After Hurricane Irma

A big thank you to everyone that sent messages, prayers, and good will to Sami and I during Hurricane Irma.

Sami and I evacuated to my son and daughter-in-law’s house south of Atlanta, GA. They were the most gracious hosts and did everything they could for us to relieve the stress. I can never thank them enough for everything they do for us.

After spending four days of prepping our house to ready it for Irma, Sami and I, already exhausted, loaded the car to head for Georgia. The trip that usually takes six hours for me (five hours for anyone else) took somewhere around 11-12 hours with the traffic.

Unfortunately, the storm kept going north and impacted everyone in its path farther north than anyone expected. Lots of people in the Georgia area where we stayed were also without power and experienced high winds and lots of rain. My family only lost tree limbs and a few other minor things.

Sami and I came home not knowing what to expect as the national news programs only reported on the areas that had the most devastation. The trip home was almost as long as going but we had relief knowing the storm was over. Every rest area we stopped had no power and the bathrooms were closed. That wasn’t a problem for Sami but it sure was for me.

I am happy to say, our house received very minimal damage. We lost a few trees, parts of the fence will never be the same, and lots of clean up is needed. BUT, we are so lucky to have been spared and we now have electricity. So many people lost everything. My best friend and his wife lost their house they have lived in for over 35 years and they only live eight miles from me, on the beachside.

I know without all the prayers that were sent our way it would have been a completely different story and I am very grateful. We had a wonderful place to go for protection and we had a house to come home to. Thank you God. Please continue your prayers for everyone affected by this storm. So many people still do not have power here and it is extremely hot, in the 90s. The linemen are working very long days in this heat trying their best to get the electricity back on for everyone.

I have not even walked into my sweat shop and I will probably not until I get the clean up and repairs completed. That area is my happy place and I cannot even think about it right now. I really appreciate all the comments sent our way and I will start my regular posts as soon as possible.

Thank you.

Posted in family, hurricane

Hurricane Irma Coming At Us In Florida


Here it is Wednesday and I have not even attempted to sew on either of my blocks of the week. For the last two days I have been trying to get my house ready for the hurricane to hit us this weekend. The sad part of all this work in hot and humid weather is that all I have done to prepare may not help if we take the direct hit that they are predicting.

I have been looking around my house, that has taken me my entire life to achieve, and know that when I come back none of it may be here. I know that the important things are people and not things, but at my age I find it very hard to think about starting over with nothing.

My daughter just moved here to Florida a few weeks ago and, unfortunately, her job demands that she stay on duty and she cannot evacuate with me. I will be so worried about her until I see her again. I would gladly stay with her if I was allowed. I am so thankful that all my other relatives are safely away from Florida and that Sami and I do have a place to go.

Please keep everyone in this hurricane’s path in your thoughts and prayers.


Posted in Boston Terrier, family, Life with Sami, Quilting

Pets on Quilts Show 2017-Sami the Wonder Dog

This is Sami, better known as Sami The Wonder Dog. She is my Quilting Assistant (meaning she grabs every block or scrap I drop on the floor and adds it to her stash under the table), Inspector, (she can spot an untrimmed thread from across the room), and Watch Dog (that does not bark). I think she has joined the Dog Workers Union because she insists on having a potty break every hour, to include fresh ice in her bowl and a treat. Now she is branching out and is entered into the Pets on Quilts contest at Lily Pad Quilting. Please visit Lily Pad and vote for Sami. I know she will appreciate it, but I don’t know if I will be able to afford the increase in pay she will demand.

Please vote for Sami. She is #15.


Pets on Quilts 2017

Posted in block of the week, family, Grandma's Kitchen, people, Quilting, sewing

Grandma’s Kitchen BOW #6 of 25


Pat Sloan’s Grandma’s Kitchen Challenge block of the week #6 is called Wash Day. I made the block with the yellow center first and decided it did not have enough contrast so I also made a blue center. I like the blue much better. The yellow just did not look as good sewn together as it did in my head.

Pat’s BOW comes with a story about the memories of Wash Day and here is one of mine:

My great grandparents on my mother’s side raised her after her mother died when she was a baby. Known to everyone as Ma and Pa Neal, they lived in a coal mining community in small house with a creek behind it. My Uncle Bill told everyone that they had running water but is was in the creek behind the house. The wash-house, complete with a wringer washer, big galvanized tub, and heating stove was located between the house and the creek. Water was carried from the creek to the wash house on wash day.

One of my chores while visiting was to carry water from the creek to fill the washer and rinse tub. As you might guess, it was not my favorite job. Wash day always depended on whether the creek was running clear or muddy. Muddy water would mean no wash. One day Ma told me to run down to the creek to see if the water was clear. Uncle Bill was going hunting that day and I wanted to go with him so I told Ma that they must be blasting up at the mines because the water was muddy. I know she knew better because we could hear when the blasts went off but she said that we could wash the next day. All during the hunt I worried about telling Ma a lie and the trouble I would be in if she walked to the creek and found it to be clear. As soon as we got home I ran to Ma and told her I lied about the muddy water. The next day I carried water to water all the tomatoes in the garden in addition to filling the washer and tub. I never told her a lie again.

Thanks for reading more of my memories.

Posted in block of the week, family, Grandma's Kitchen, Quilting, sewing

Grandma’s Kitchen BOW #5 of 25


This week the Grandma’s Kitchen block is called Glasses and Cups by Pat Sloan. Each week when Pat posts the block of the week she tells a short story about memories of her grandparents and the participants of the BOW do the same. This week’s subject is glasses and cups and here is my story.

Coming from the hills of East Tennessee a lot of people in my family used some type of tobacco product, whether it was chewing tobacco, cigarettes, and/or snuff (powdered tobacco). This was way before all the dangers associated with tobacco was common knowledge. At this time snuff came in clear glasses with a tin top. When empty they made the perfect water/milk glasses. They fit your hand just right and were easy to wash. We always had a good supply in the cabinet.

Local gas stations would give glasses with the purchase of $1 of gasoline. Gas was around twenty cents a gallon and $1 would almost fill the tank. Everyone that had a car would buy gas at the station that gave the glasses until they had a complete set. Anyone that had a set of these glasses would save them for Sunday dinner or when company came over to eat.

Thanks for reading.




Posted in block of the week, family, Grandma's Kitchen, Quilting, sewing

Grandma’s Kitchen BOW #4 of 25


Pat Sloan’s Grandma’s Kitchen Challenge BOW for this week in called Half a Modern.

In this challenge we share a story as it relates to the block. All of my grandparents were as far from modern as could be so I will just share a story.

My Mammaw and Pappaw on my daddy’s side were very loving and wonderful… everyone except each other. 🙂 They could not live apart but they also could not live together. My daddy finally decided to built Mammaw a little house ‘within hollering distance’ from Pappaw. This worked out very well for everyone. Mammaw would cook breakfast and holler for Pappaw to come and eat. At dinner, the noon meal was called dinner and evening meal was called supper, Pappaw would cook and holler for Mammaw to come and eat.

On wash day Pappaw would carry water for the wringer washer and bring his clothes to be washed. Mammaw would wash all the clothes and hang them on the line to dry. Pappaw would then take the dry clothes off the line at drop them off at Mammaw’s for ironing.

I remember one Sunday after church Mammaw was hoeing weeds from the garden and I was picking up the weeds and throwing them into the chicken coop. All of a sudden Pappaw started singing as loud as possible, “Oh what a shame it is to work on Sunday” along with a few other verses that fit in the theme. Of course, this did not sit very well with Mammaw but I could see the twinkle in her eyes.

This set up continued until Mammaw died in 1957. Pappaw lived until 1968. They were so much entertainment to me and the cousins. We still talk about the arguments they would have and the way they would take care of each other.


Posted in life, people, Quilting, sewing

A Very Special Quilt, part 2 – The Rest of the Story

Yesterday I told you the story about my vintage tulip quilt from my Aunt Mary. I loved this quilt so much, not only because I think it is beautiful and all the memories that go with it, but because my Aunt Mary made it. I have made many reproductions of this quilt by tracing the tulips to make my own pattern. I made my first grandson, Joey, one like it with a few modifications in 1992.

The second picture is the last tulip quilt I made. It is hand quilted around the tulips as I wanted it to be soft and cuddly. The third picture is the back of my quilt.

I cannot look at Aunt Mary’s quilt without seeing her sitting at her machine in front of the window just sewing the day away. She had an outside building that housed her wringer washer and a small heating stove that she called her wash house. There was a cellar under the shed where she kept her homemade jars of fruits and vegetables. It was yesterday’s version of a ‘she-shed’. 🙂 Hooks were mounted on the shed’s ceiling with ropes attached. The ropes were also attached to her quilting frame and she could pull the frame up to the ceiling to get it out of the way when she wasn’t quilting and lowered when needed. In the winter we started a fire in the stove to warm up the shed and then quilt and/or wash clothes. Aunt Mary would put a big pot of pinto beans on the stove and by supper time we were ready.

I find it funny now when I get tired of moving my junk off my cutting table when I get ready to sew. Just think if I still had to carry water to fill up the washer, start a fire in the stove (after chopping the wood), pull the quilting frame down, and then start quilting. I am blessed.

Thank you for reading my story.


Posted in life, Quilting, sewing

A Very Special Vintage Baby Quilt


If this quilt was discovered at a Goodwill shop most people would walk by, if it even made it onto the sales floor. It is over 50 years old, lots of stains, and even a small hole or two, but if I could only keep one quilt from my vast collection, this would be THE ONE. It came to me from my dear Aunt Mary Daugherty. Aunt Mary was the person who took the time to teach me to sew by letting me operate the petal on her petal powered machine before I was big enough to see the top of the machine if I stood on the floor. This taught me how to control the petal to keep the machine going smoothly. She would sit me in her lap to watch how she would feed the fabric through and eventually  let me actually sew scraps together under her close supervision.

Aunt Mary was a very accomplished seamstress. She would let me pick out a dress I liked from the Sears and Roebuck Catalog and she would make it for me, usually out of beautiful flour sack fabrics. Back then flour and feed came in calico or gingham cotton fabrics that I thought was the prettiest fabric ever made.

As much as Aunt Mary loved her sewing machine all of her quilting was done by hand. When her only child married and was pregnant she made all the layette including many quilts as the old houses in East Tennessee were cold and drafty in the winter. One of the quilts was the tulip quilt pictured above. She was so proud of it because it was the first quilt she had ever quilted on the sewing machine. When I had my first son, John, in 1968 she gave the quilt to me and as you can see it was well used and loved by all three of my children. When they outgrew it I boxed it up and kept it through many moves, even from Tennessee to Florida in 1981.

I will complete the ‘rest of the story’ as Paul Harvey used to say, in tomorrow’s post.

Thank you all for reading my long story.