Saturday, April 25, 2015

Spring Clean up

Our town does an annual spring clean up. If you pile it on the street during cerfain assigned days, they will haul away vast amounts of yard wastefor fRee. Last year, I did some clean up at my MIL's house, in her back yard, only I didn't get to do it until after the city had come by to pick up the yard waste. I just piled it in  the side yard, rather than haul it clear outto the dump. It would have been more than one load, I' m sure.
 We also had a huge snow storm on Mothers Day last year, and those branches hadn't been hauled away. There were quite few of those.

So thats what i did this rainy, dreary Saturday. I created a HUGE brush pile on the street to be hauled away by the city, hopefully on Monday. I hope nobody drives their car into it in the meantime. I have already moved it twice. I'm not gonna do it again.
(I even put the carcass of a little dead deer in the trash! Yes, it was definitely a clean up day. It [the dead deer] was mostly just bones and fur...but it was in her back yard! Ick)

I kind of wanted to just turn it into a burn pile, but it's not allowed in the city.  It would have brought back some memories from Texas days, back when Dad had us help him clear the land. I have looked at that property in Hooks on the street view of Google Maps. The woods came right up to our back yard fence when we moved there. There ae hardly any trees there at all now, comparatively speaking.

Coleman fabric

Once upon a time, Cedar City had a Coleman Sleeping Bag manufacturing company. Periodically, the company would rid itself of the many "leftovers" from the manufacturing process. Sometimes fabric was cut or sewn incorrectly. Perhaps the fabric was flawed. Or maybe that particular run or style of fabric was finished.  Whatever the reason, they had a LOT of leftovers and (even though I never made it there to actually DO this) it was placed out on the loading dock on a certain day at a certain time and any body who wanted free fabric was welcome to it. They could take an armload, or a car load or a truck load. Lots of people did. Well, about 20 years ago, the Coleman plant closed its doors. Our neighbors lost their jobs there. One was transferred back east with them, temporarily. And the fabric free-for-all was over.  

Have you any idea how many quilt backs were created out of discarded sleeping bag flannel?  How many humanitarian projects completed with the likes of that material? 
I cleaned out a closet a few weeks ago for my MIL, and in one of the boxes was some of that fabric! I took it home (because, dear reader , I collect fabric), washed and dried it.  It's old. I didn't know if it would survive laundering or not.  It fared quite well, actually.
The bottom of the stack in the photo above is some really nice black and white Houndstooth check flannel.  It is a nice sturdy, soft, cotton flannel. I was surprised at its quality, actually.(Maybe it had not come from there)  But WHAT would one do with it? The pieces are all about 1 to 2 yards long, and not really wide. Maybe the size of a sleeping bag liner?
Then there a few small remnants of that classic "flying ducks" flannel. They are just small pieces. I think those are scaps from camper curtains, actually.
The solid pieces are a very thick canvas/duck.

The rest of it on the top was the most popular and the most prolific of all the Coleman fabric. This stuff showed up in thrift stores and garage slaes for ages after. And it is showing up yet again from the depths of old forgotten boxes in closets. It is just a plaid, cotton blend. Small 1 to2 yard pieces.  They just made me smile. I have in my fabric stash some similar stuff , but in blue. 

Quilt blocks? Matching boys' shirts?  Yeah, maybe in another decade.  Maybe these pieces will end up as humanitarian aid things , too.

Saturday, April 18, 2015

April in So. Cal. for Spring Fling

We decided to head to Southern California for the Sorensen Family "Spring Fling." My cousin Ken Sorensen and his wife, Jeri, hosted it in Yucaipa.  Here is the whole group. There are a lot of Roah family members there, too. (And I am really NOT that short. I was stooping to avoid blocking Justin behind me.) 

 I brought some of Grandma Sorensen's sheet music with me to share with cousins.  It is over 100 years old, some of it!  And it is quite crumbly and brittle, but very fun to look at because she wrote and/or stamped her name all over some of the pieces.  Some of them, I have framed and they look quite nice, if I do say so myself.  Most of the cousins chose to take one or two. ( Only I forgot to show them when we went to Aunt Tuny's house afterwards!)  When I framed the ones I did for our kids, I also included some of my very few memories of Grandma Sorensen, and it was really fun to share some memories of her with cousin Randy.  He remembers  Grandma picking fleas off her little chiuhuahua, Cheena.  She would put the doggie on her lap, on it's back, role small segments of the skin between her fingers, and pluck off the fleas, one by one. Then she would *pop* the flea between her thumbnails and drop it into a little bowl of water she'd prepared--just to make sure the little bugger was dead--drowned, if not popped to death.  Eww!  But apparently sand fleas were a big problem in Santa Monica and other sandy soil areas in mild southern California.  And were there no such thing as flea collars back then?  Apparently Grandma was really good at smacking flies dead with her bare hands, too.  She really had a vengeance for bugs, huh? Oh! and MY mom told me that Grandma used to smack those miller moths out of the air, down to the floor, where she would use her shoe to smash 'em, grind 'em.  "They're good for the carpet," she would say.  We figure if they didn't grow up to lay eggs, then of course it was good for the carpet--it's moth larvae that eats woolen carpets! ha.
 Below. Randy, Brenda, Dylan.  Dylan's wife, Amy, was at a bachelorette party for a friend this weekend, so she was unable to attend the Spring Fling.  I shall lovingly refer to her as Dylan's "alleged" wife, having never met his spouse (I think I did meet her before they were married, however.)
 Ken and Jeri are SO NICE to let little ones take over the back yard and play with  balls. Sometimes they are none-too-gentle with the trees and shrubs, but Ken doesn't say a word. He has a lovely yard, and I wish I would have taken a photo of their roses. My. They reminded me of the ones in Alice in Wonderland.  Remember the ones the Queen of Hearts demanded to be painted red?  These were HUGE and very red and very beautiful.  Ken even has a few plumeria trees and even though they were not in bloom, he had a picture to show me of when they were.  Really pretty.  Below is Jill and Devin on the left, Christi's boyfriend Eric hiding behind the windchime.  I think they are playing badminton.
 Below.  There were also squirt guns.   THAT was fun for some of the younger ones. Including Randy. ha.

Avery, Devin, Justin

Gina teaching us how to play Tenzie.

Gina, Ken, Jeri. Cara was also at a bachelorette party for a friend this weekend, and Gina and Logan were with Ken and Jeri.

And Kenny K was there, enjoying the food, the company and meeting new friends all over again. And again.
Did you notice the GARGANTUAN strawberries in the bowl, above?  Yes, they are strawberries, not apples. ha.  Jeri has a neighbor/friend down the street who owns a fruit stand.  Each year in time for the Spring Fling, Jeri asks her friend to custom pick the biggest and best and ripest berries he has--just for her and her party.  And he does!!  THAT's why Jeri's strawberries are so magnificent all the time for this annual celebration.
 After the party was over, we followed Suz back to Temecula, using the back highways.  She made a quick stop at the local Stater Brothers' grocery to buy a particularly lovely rainbow bouncy ball for her family.  This is the Devin, waiting patiently in the van for her.  We spent the night in Kirk and Suzi's guest room (Sandi's Suite) and it was just lovely.  We had not seen the new addition to their home.  The last time we were there, it was still in the planning stages.

Sunday morning, we ate breakfast, then headed over to Huntington Beach.  First we visited with Aunt Maureen for a few  minutes.
 Then we headed over to Aunt Tuny and Uncle Gary's.  Sandi was there, too, and she took the photo below. It was great to visit for a few minutes. We missed seeing them at the get-together in Yucaipa.

Then Mike and I drove all the way home to Cedar City. We made great time on the freeways. The only really slow spot was in the Virgin River Gorge because of construction, and we had an interesting audio book to listen to along the drive.  Good snacks.  Good company. We were home by about 7:30 p.m. Safe and sound. It is so nice to be able to do a quick trip like that and have it all work out well.  It happened to be our stake conference, so I didn't even need to get a substitute for my Primary Class.

Saturday, April 4, 2015

Conference Saturday April 2015

We enjoyed some gorgeous spring flowers this weekend. Love my tulips.

Caroline (and occasionly Jonathan) did Conference activities.

I made the mistake of sitting on the sofa in the basement to watch some Saturday sessions. Not good for my back AT ALL!! OUCH. Ibuprofen Sunday. And I spent all of Sunday conference by choice listening from the kitchen.

Mike and Robert chose to view the Priesthood session on our home computer. They managed to catch some March Madness there as well. I'm grateful Robert will make the sacrifice to come to our house to play, knowing that we dont have many tvs and many channels to watch.
 Janet bought us some cinnamon rolls for Sunday morning. I was too lazy to make them. But i did make the hot cocoa to go with them! And we had fruit.
 Oooh, and it appears that the Easter Bunny made it to our house, too! (eggs hiding around the piano and music stand)

That snake. Is it guarding its eggs?

Bunny cake. It was getting a little droopy in the warm kitchen, so waited out the afternoon in the cooler garage.( or maybe it was hiding from the snake?)

I thoroughly enjoyed all the sessions of conference. And it was lots of fun to play games with everyone--even if they DID make fun of me for spewing water everywhere when I started laughing too hard with my mouth full.

Robert told the funny story of when he was little and he was having trouble getting his dress pants undone. The pants had a trickier metal sliding hook, rather than the usual snap opening he was used to on his jeans.  Mom told Dad, "Help Robbie with his pants," and so Dad just grabbed the two sides of the waistband opening and went YANK, just like you would for a snap closure. Only it WASN'T a snap closure like he thought, and Dad said, "Oh. I guess that wasn't right," or something like that. And there stood Robert staring down at his ruined dress pants.  I wonder what Mom had to say? I didn't think to ask Robert on Saturday night because I was too busy spewing water across the table and trying hard not to choke. Don't know why that tickled me so much, but it did.