Friday, December 26, 2008

Which Tarot Card Are You?

You are The Wheel of Fortune

Good fortune and happiness but sometimes a species of
intoxication with success

The Wheel of Fortune is all about big things, luck, change, fortune. Almost always good fortune. You are lucky in all things that you do and happy with the things that come to you. Be careful that success does not go to your head however. Sometimes luck can change.

What Tarot Card are You?
Take the Test to Find Out.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008


These are some blocks, well, circles, that I designed, and picked out the fabrics for, that my friend, Diane stitched up for us. We were going to start selling our patterns, but the idea kinda petered out. Now I have them on my wall in my studio under my wolf plates. The lighting is not the best, and I'm not real good with my camera, but you can probably get a fairly decent picture of what they look like. I may go back and take individual pictures of each. I think they are beautiful, and would look beautiful made up into a quilt. Or one into a wall-hanging.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Christmas 2008

I finally managed to get our Christmas cards done, and have posted one here for you to see. To me, they scream "BEGINNER!", but hopefully next year's cards will scream "SHE GOT BETTER AT IT"! LOL! I grossly underestimated the time I needed to make the cards, and they didn't get sent out until the 19th. I can only hope they reach their destinations by Christmas time. Next year, I'm going to start my cards in November - the BEGINNING" of November, so I am not rushed like I was this time. I was caught in a frenzy of stamping to get these done.
Today, I've got to make jewelry - earrings for Emily, and a necklace for Febe, and earrings for Jeanne, as a thank you for some items she sent me to help out. Febe's necklace is also a thank you for 10 ink pads and a huge stack of paper in different colors to help me get a start on some colors to use to border my stamps with.
I did good the other day, and found an eBay site that had a ton of great house scenes, so I bid on them, and won them all except for one. So I am pleased with that. I can hardly wait to see them. Some of them are wintery landscapes, so they may be candidates for next year's Christmas cards. I'll have to wait and see.

On a different note, I have hired a life coach, and we'll be starting on January 5th. My goal is a perfectly clean and organized house by this time next year. And I especially want to concentrate on my studio. So that I can go back there when I need a break, and work on something or straighten up something. The whole house needs a good spring cleaning, but I'm starting in January on it. And working through the entire year on the house. It should be sparkling by next Christmas. One of the things we have to do is to do SOMETHING every day on our main goal. I intend to make this work for me. So, I'm going to do the work, even when I don't feel like it and remember that ACCOMPLISHMENT FEELS GOOD! Well, it is almost a quarter till 2:00AM. And I'm getting sleepy. Woke up at 12:30AM. I guess I'll try going back to bed in a few minutes. Cya soon!

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Tune in, Drop Out, Turn on

Hi - Well, after a day OFF of doing cards, I realized that I didn't miss it one bit. And I began to question my sanity of spending Christmas time doing these 125 cards, worrying about them, frantically trying to find enough small buttons for the shoes for them, etc. I put on a Christmas CD, tuned in, and began to relax. And a sense of peace came over me, and I began to think. I remembered seeing 2 or 3 emails from people who wanted IN to this swap, though it was closed..........and my mind said, gee, if I drop out, they could have my space...and a little bit of relaxation came over me, and I thought it about a few seconds more, and decided that yes, that sounded good to me. I waited until Michael got up, and asked his opinion, and he agreed with me. Why put that much effort into something during this special time of year? It would be much better spent baking cookies, decorating, listening to Christmas music, making my Christmas presents, so I wrote Margie, the hostess of the swap, and begged for mercy (no, I didn't beg - I just told her that I needed to get out of the swap), and she wrote back, and said no problem. And a huge load of relief came off my shoulders. I will ask Elena to send me her book after a while so I can see what it looks like, and I'll send it back. Same for the fall book.
Now, there is a winter skinny book swap that I would have to do 25 pages for front and back - so that is 50 pages and I'm going to say no to that, even though it isn't due until Jan 31st. I've GOT to get my studio cleaned up before I try to work on anything swap-wise. And I'll take January to do that with Chris's help. And then there is the rest of the house. But I'll bite that off just a little at a time. So now that I dropped out, I'll turn on more Christmas music. And relax a little more.
Sometimes you gotta do what you gotta do.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008


Hi Folks,
Tis 4AM, and I've been up since 2:15. Bummer. Michael says I am in a manic phase. He's probably right.
I worked on my ArtTechniques project yesterday. Got all 130 cards cut out, and got 40 bottlecaps flattened, and got about a dozen cards stamped with background stamps. Will do 40 more bottlecaps flattened today and will try to get at least 40 more pages stamped. I might start gluing today also. Here is a pic of a finished page. I am going to get Michael to help me stamp the backgrounds, so he is involved, and helpful. I've got until Feb. 28 to get these all done and mailed out to Betsy. I should be able to be done with these in January. I've also got to make a Christmas card for my secret sister on my Alextamping group - by Dec. 15th. I'm waiting on one stamp to come in before making that. I'll post a picture of that card when I get it done. Happy Thanksgiving to everyone!

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Sophia Cards

Good afternoon!
I finished my 5 Sophia cards (PID images), and here they are. I had fun doing these - they are wintery ones, and made me feel chilly to make them. They are ready to mail out tomorrow. The next one will be of Ralph. I've never done an ATC with a guy as the main focus. So we shall see how it comes out. You'll see soon enough.

I've signed up for a FAT BOOK exchange on recycled embellishments. I'm going to use bottle caps, buttons, and colored wire. So I'll make a background for each card, and then add these embellishments. No two can be alike, and I have to make one for each person signed up. So far there are 36 people signed up.

I'm also signing up for a different fat book exchange - 4 per month, and we mail them in to the hostess and will get back four new fat book pages. I've asked the moderator how much we have to do to the cards, like is this a finished card - background, focal element and then embellishments? I haven't heard back from her yet. I hope so, because that is more fun.

My husband and I sat down the other evening, and discussed the movement of my studio out of the master bedroom space and put our bedroom back in there, and he was against it. He said all we do is go to bed and we don't need a bunch of room around us. So we are NOT going to be rearranging the studio I have now. I want an ironing space set up, so it is ready all the time. And we got some wire cubicle storage bins to put together to help me sort out my stuff. That way we can get my studio together. I think we can do that tomorrow, and bring in my fabric shelves back to the studio - we had gotten them put into Michael's office until we got everything else moved. Now it is just a matter for me to clean up the room, and get a space cleared off for working on my ATCs.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008


I was trying to come up with a new background for my blog, and tried to make a go of it, but it didn't work, this further reminding me of how computer-challenged I am. It said to go to Add Gadgets and follow the instructions. Well, there WERE no instructions for adding a new background, at leaat none that I could interpret. The word "backgrounds" was nowhere to be found. Or desktop or anything like that. So, I'll have to wait for my son-in-law, the computer geek to wake up and ask him how to do it. Or just leave it alone right now. I've got a nice black background, and it seems to be sufficient.

I've got MSNBC on to watch the day unfold as people line up to vote. My DH and I voted early on Friday. Here in this county you could vote early if you had a disability that prevented you from standing in lines to vote, and we both have that.

I am ready to make some more ATCs, and have ordered from Paper Imagery Designs, their collage sheets Lila, Ralph, and Abigail.

I've also decided to NOT move my studio into the other rooms. Just way too much hassle, and using the master bedroom as my studio makes so much more sense. We only use the bedroom for sleep, so we don't need all the extra room. We're going to work on that room today - getting it picked up and cleaned up. Doing laundry, etc. We figure it should take the two of us only about two hours to get it done right. We've got to vacuum thoroughly, because that is where the dogs sleep too, and we have an overhead fan that blows their fur and dander back down on us as we sleep. So we've got a large vacuuming to do. And we are going to move a television in there for sleepless nights. Usually I can pretty much go to sleep easily, but I wake up to use the bathroom. Then it is a draw for me - do I stay up for awhile, or try to go back to bed. Last night, I went back to bed, and fell right to sleep. So that worked out good for me.

After we finish our bedroom, I want to tackle the living room/dining room area, because I want to be able to put our tree up after Thanksgiving, in the living room, which is blocked off from the dogs, so that they can't get to the ornaments. I have mostly glass ornaments on the tree, so I don't want the dogs to get behind the tree and knock it down, or to get ahold of an ornament and try to bite it - baaaad idea.

While Michael and Chris work in the living room/dining room, I'm going to work in the kitchen, and declutter the counter tops, so I have room to cook. Plus load and run the dishwasher, and then unload it when the plates cool down. So it is ready for new dishes and silverware to go into it.

Emily's office had a Halloween Day on Friday and they were all supposed to come dressed as their favorite TV character. Emily came dressed as Abby on NCIS. The picture here shows her kneeling down on the right, with the white lab coat on. She did a great job with her costume.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008


VOTE this year, it is so important! Don't let the shenanigans fool you into thinking that you cannot vote. They are pulling all the cons they can come up with to make you think that you will get tickets on your cars while voting, or you will lose your scholarships if you are a student and try to vote where you go to school. NONSENSE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Don't let them fool you! They tried to tell Virginians that due to the long lines, that only Republicans could vote on the 4th, and the Democrats would be allowed to vote on Nov. 5th! Do NOT BE FOOLED!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
This may be the MOST IMPORTANT vote of your life! So get out and vote. Take nothing for granted. Obama may have a lead in the polls, but that does not mean he doesn't need your vote - he needs each and every vote to keep those leads. So get up and go out and vote. Don't wait until the last minute - the lines will be too long. Try to vote at a time when the lines will be the shortest, if possible. But get out and vote! Even if the news "calls" the election - vote vote vote anyway. You can remember 2000 and what happened then. We need a mandate. If you know someone who needs a ride to go vote, go and get them and take them with you to go vote. Get everybody revved up to go vote. Tell them how important this vote is.
WE CAN DO THIS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Sarah Swap

Been working today on 5 new ATCs for a swap on PIDSwaps. Called the Sarah Swap. I'm attaching the 5 new ATCs I made for it. It felt good to get creative this morning. I had to work on the coffee table in the den, due to the chaos in my studio, but it worked out okay. I took a plastic bin and picked out what I thought I'd need, and loaded up the bin with cardstock and matboard, and scissors and gel medium, and a foam brush and brought it up here to the den and started working. As I worked on one card, the next card was forming in my mind. I'm glad to finally be posting some of my art on my blog.

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

The Wedding!

Well, the wedding went off without a hitch. It was a beautiful ceremony, with both Chris and Emily reciting their own vows. Michael got to walk her down the aisle. The reception was fun, and Michael got to dance with her, a special thing for him and her. They are now Mr. and Mrs. Christopher Smith.

Friday, May 23, 2008

Jewelry for the Wedding

I finished one bridesmaid necklace and earring set. The earrings are flattened out in the scan, but hang straigt in real life. Here is a picture of them.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

More quilts

Good Afternoon!
I joined a Dear Jane quilt group - another block by block group, based on the Dear Jane quilt. I'm going to be doing mine in jewel tones,rather than the traditional fabrics. I think that will be dramatic. Chris has been helping me with my studio, and we are about ready to rearrange it. ooooooooo, you know how fond of rearranging I am. I have virtually stopped knitting for now. Will pick it back up in the fall. Or will pick it back up in the evenings. I just don't feel like doing it right now for some reason. Well,I do know one reason, and that is since I am dieting, I will be wanting to make some sweaters and coats for myself, and I want to wait until I hit and maintain my goal weight before I start making some stuff for myself. I'm a little bit tired of making scarves. But too tired to do anything more difficult.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

New Quilting Themes

Hi! I have joined two new groups to do 2 new quilts, and I am so excited about them. One is Quilting the Women of the Bible, and one is Quilting the Names of Jesus. Both go along with a Bible Study/Devotional, and I will learn as I go along, about each of these. Today they are talking about Jael, a woman who took control of a city when the men left. It was very interesting reading about her. I have to write for the patterns - I may call tomorrow and order the patterns over the phone - to get them sooner. They will make gorgeous quilts. And I will have learned some very new things and will have my faith renewed - always a good thing.

I'm getting my studio cleaned up, and plan on working on that tomorrow and the rest of the week, until I get it just as clean and shiny as it can be. Get everything put away, and be ready for working in it as soon as possible.

First priority will be starting the Yosemite quilt. Will add more later.

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Spring Fever

The day time temps here are fluctuating between the 60's and the 40's, sometimes dipping into the 30's at night time. It has got me into Spring Fever real bad! I'm doing spring cleaning, and that includes my studio - finally. Baby stepping my way into getting it done.

I've signed up for an online class on quilting on paper, and that sounds like a wonderful experience to me. I'm looking forward to that class! I'm gathering supplies, which is always fun!

Still working on getting some photos up of my artwork.


Tuesday, March 18, 2008

My Artwork

I need to put up photos of my artwork here on my blog. I haven't done it yet, because all of my photos are on my old broken down computer. I've got to re-take the photos and then load them into my computer. I make quilts, jewelry, mixed media work, do paintings, knitting, collage, etc etc etc. I can't seem to get tied down to any one thing. I will start taking some photos today and hopefully get some good images to post. I love houses, and they figure prominently in many of my quilts.
I went to Lucky Shie's website and would love to take one of her art camps - maybe next year? I can try to schedule one when Emily and Chris have a week off so they can come and stay with Michael, or can check in with him daily. I need to start saving some money for it.
Did Weight Watchers today and according to their scales, I had gained .6 pounds. about half a pound. Dang it! That was discouraging, especially with me adding exercise. Next week I should get a loss or I am going to sit down with the leader and see what I am doing wrong.

Friday, March 14, 2008


I took a walk yesterday with my son-in-law to be. We walked only for one mile - that is all I could do at this stage. I'll work up to walking 2 miles. He mentioned that he wanted to start walking again to my husband, who told me, so I asked him yesterday morning, and he said sure! So this odd couple went walking - he started off with a brisk walk, which I could not keep up with, but he is such a gentleman, so he slowed down to where I could keep up with him. I sped up as much as I could do, but I was getting winded. So we set a good pace to be able to walk and be able to talk with some difficulty. I'm sure the persons walking the other way were wondering how this old lady had managed to get this hunky young guy to walk with her. LOL!

And today, I went to Curves, the gym for women. I was proud of myself for going and doing the workout. This should help with my weight loss. I have stayed the same the last week. So doing the exercise should shake up my metabolism and get some weight loss going. I plan on going to Curves on MWF and walking on T/TH/SAT. Taking Sunday off.

I rejoined the Quilt Art list, and have met Linda Minton, who has been MOST compassionate with me, since I had unsubbed from the list several years ago when they got into a stupid discussion about Thomas Kincaid versus some other artist, and once I asked a simple question and got flamed by a bunch of people. I said I didn't need this, so I unsubbed from the group. So I thought maybe time had healed the group, and I rejoined it the other day, and what did I walk into? ANOTHER discussion of Thomas Kincaid versus some other artist!!!!!!!!! I wrote in and told them my experience of unsubbing before and here they were doing it again, and couldn't we all just play nice? Anyway, Linda emailed me, and said I must have really bad timing! LOL! But she encouraged me to stay on, and I will. I need to get some pictures of my art up here on my blog. I haven't done that yet, and I'd like to get to that soon.

I use the logo at the beginning of my blog on my "business" cards. I list my name, address and email address. If I sell my jewelry, I attach one of my cards to it, so they know who made it. My jewelry is the only thing I sell. I haven't gotten to the point of selling my other artworks yet - they are so personal to me. We are running out of wallspace here to hang things on, but I don't give up.

Now it is up to me to continue my exercise pattern and I'll see my pounds go down.

Sunday, March 9, 2008

Weight Watchers

Hi! I've decided to join WW, and after 2 weeks, have lost 7 pounds so far. I get weighed again either tomorrow afternoon or Tuesday morning, depending upon which meeting I go to. I hope for a good weight loss. I figured it was time to get rid of this excess body clutter and get into shape and then MAINTAIN it, like I never have before. I'm doing it vegetarian style, and that has its rewards. Michael is doing the veggie part with me, but is eating more than I do. At least he tries to.
I've been focusing on whole grain foods and beans right now. I will venture into tempeh and tofu and miso, etc, as the weeks go by. I found a recipe that uses edamame and rice, so I am going to try it and see how it goes. See if Michael likes it. See if I like it.
Emily and Chris picked out a new wedding cake design and I took it by Sue and she said she could do it, with help from the florist. So I went to the florist and she grabbed what silk calla liles she had - it has calla lilies on the top and on the sides of the cake here and there. It is beautiful. I'm SO glad to be rescued from having to make the cake myself. I think everything is in place for the wedding - I do need to call our piano player and let her know about the rehearsal and I think that is all right now. Michael needs to get his black suit to the dry cleaners and get it ready. I think the dress I got for the wedding will be adequate even if I do lose weight. If not, I'll pick something out last minute.
I've been sick with a bad cold or the flu or something for the past 3 or 4 weeks. Thus no updates here until now. I'm finally feeling a tad better. Thanks be to God!
I have the urge to knit something. I think the gals at Mosaic would faint if I walked in the door! I haven't been there in a long time. I just want something easy to knit. Like a scarf for Michael.
And I want to work on my studio so I can get the Yosemite quilt done.

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

No More Cakes!

Well, I convinced myself that I am going to be unable to do Emily's wedding cake, and will turn it over to the professionals. That is a load off my mind. That week before the wedding should run smoothly, and having to make the cake was like throwing that whole week into a tornado. Now, I just have to see if the cake lady can do it for us. I sure hope so.

I'm reading the Elm Creek Quilt novels, and enjoying them immensely. I'm also reading, in between, a new author to me - Patricia Cornwell. Very exciting murder mysteries. I don't want to put them down. I read them on Saturday and Sunday and manage to finish them by Sunday night. Luckily she has a good line of them, so I should be set for reading for quite a while. Patricia Cornwell, used to be head of our state's (Virginia) CSI unit in Richmond, and her main character is a detective, Kay Scarpetta. She is a very good writer and makes her characters come to life. Carolyn introduced her novels to me. Thanks, Carolyn!!!

My creativity coach, Paula, has me trying something new: at the end of each day, I am to write:
Today I am glad...................... And fill that in. You can make as many statements of Today I am glad.......... that you want to. I'm going to try that tonight. Right now, I know that today I am glad I decided to not make the wedding cake. LOL Too much pressure.

Blessed be!

No More Cakes

Saturday, February 9, 2008


Thursday night, I took my first class in using fondant on cakes. It was very interesting and kinda fun. It makes the outside of your cake look absolutely perfect. I have to bring an iced cake, covered with fondant, for this next class on this coming Thursday. I also have to bring gum paste, and we are going to learn how to make some decorations for the cake.

I'm also starting class 1 of Course 2 of cake decorating. I just have to bring icing in stiff consistency and medium consistency - we are going to learn how to make more flowers. That will be fun.

I'm getting Emily to email me pictures of wedding cakes she likes so that I get an idea of what she wants me to do. I may have to make a second cake - a groom's cake, usually chocolate, to be sure I have enough cake to go around for everybody. Worry, worry, worry.

Monday, February 4, 2008


This is a photo of Sparky, Emily's Pomeranian. He can do amazing things! He loves to play and will play by himself if nobody will play with him. He is the first Pom that we got.

My son-in-law to be

This is Emily's fiance, Christopher. He's a real doll - helpful and handy to have around. Besides being a computer genius. They are getting married June 21st.


This new one is Mickey - we inherited him from my mother - in- law when she passed. He has taken to us real well.

Sunday, February 3, 2008


I make original jewelry by hand, and will post some pictures of it. Some of it is for sale, if anybody is interested. I've got to get the photos done first.

More Roses and Mickster

I have been practicing making my rosebuds, and they are not bad. I think I have it down. What is next? Gotta make a cake - going to make a white cake with raspberry preserves swirled through it. That is what Emily wants for her wedding, so I might as well try it. I'm going to tint the icing a periwinkle blue, and use purple for the roses.
I also want to try to make some "fire and ice" roses - those are Emily's favorite roses. They are a light yellow and then tinged at the top with a deep red. I am going to tint the icing a pale yellow and then use a powdered sugar that has been already made up, to "paint" the edges of the roses the deep red color.
All the dogs are in, except for Mickey, who likes his privacy, who is still outside. The rest of them are all asleep on the floor around us here in the den. Mickey likes to be called Mickster. He responds to that better.

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Roses, roses smell so sweet.........

Last night, in our cake class, we learned to start making roses. At first, I couldn't catch on to it. Then the teacher came by, and did it holding my hands and moving them the right way. THEN, I got it. AHA! Now it is practice, practice, practice. Because next week is our last class, and we have to make a whole bunch of roses to put on top of our cakes. I am excited to learn how to finish making the roses, and hope I can do a good job. All of this builds up to making Emily's wedding cake.
I start the next cake class on Feb.7th - working with fondant and gum paste. I'll learn how to drape a cake in that class. It puts such a nice finish on the cake.
Hopefully, they'll offer a Course 2 for the regular cake class. The fondant class is an extra class. Four classes, on Thursday evenings. I'll start practicing my roses tomorrow. I need a stiff, yet pliable icing - just right. And one pastry bag for the base, and one pastry bag for the petals.
It sure smells good in our kitchen nowadays. Sweet, and yummy.

"Our Little Babies"

This is Archimedes.

This is Darcy.

This is Oliver.

This is Sweetpea!

This is Brownie.

And here's Madison!

My Soul Mate, Michael

Here is a photo of my dear soul mate, Michael, holding Oliver, one of our poms. Michael and I have been married now for 30 years. Hard to believe - time has flown by.
Michael is a retired judge and it is really nice to have him home with me all day.
He is the love of my life!


This is my daughter, Emily, and her fiance, Chris, who will be getting married June 21, 2008.

My Dad's Birthday - Jan 29th

My dad turned 86 on Jan 29th this year. He looks and acts like a 60-year old! It is amazing. I hope I inherit THOSE genes! I'll turn 55 in February.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY DADDY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Cakes, Cakes, Cakes Everywhere!

Last night was our 3rd class in the cake decorating class. One more to go. We learned more on how to make roses. After numerous attempts, I finally got it right. All of us were eating our mistakes. LOL Then we learned some drop flowers and how to make a 3D clown to sit on top of a cake. He was cute! But definitely the rose was the hardest thing to master. I got one really right. Next Tuesday is our last class, and I need to practice, practice, practice those roses, because we are going to do our last class, and put a bouquet of roses on the cake we bring in. YIKES!!!!!!!!!! So you know what I'll be doing. A big bowl of icing on my lap and my pastry bags full, and then practice practice practice.
We've figured out that we could have bought two professionally decorated cakes for the price we have paid for all the stuff I've had to buy for the classes. Bah!
On Feb. 7th, I start the fondant and gum paste course. That should be interesting. That will truly be something new.

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

THE WEDDING! - January 24, 2008

Our daughter, 28, is getting married this June. We've been working on it for the past year, to get everything in place. It seems like the year has passed so fast. She'll be marrying Christopher Smith, who she has been seeing for several years. He is a good guy and we like himvery much. We have her fitting for her gown in March, and I need to get a date from her, so I can schedule that.There are so many details that go into planning a wedding, that I would have hired a wedding planner if I had known how much work was involved. Now that I have done it all, I would never put myself through this again. Luckily we have no other children, so I won't have to go through this again. It has been fun, but it is tiring also. I want to give my daughter the wedding of her dreams, but reality sets in, and we don't have $100,000 to put into the wedding. So we do the best we can, and bless her heart, she goes along with it. I'll add a photo of her in her
wedding gown when we get that picture taken. And a photo of the two of them together.

CAKE SUCCESS! - January 23, 2008

Well, I wasn't the only one who screwed up their cake. In fact, mine was one of many icky looking ones. So I felt less alone. Gotta do another cake for next Tuesday night, plus making up icing and coloring it in the way I want it to do roses, and other flowers. So much to do, and it seems so little time. I've got to go buy a cake carrier today at KMart, after my therapist's appt. Also need to buy some more pastry bags for the class, and a birthday card for my dad - he'll be 86 on Jan. 29th and is going like a 60 year old. He is amazing. Maybe tomorrow I'll tell you how I found him when I turned 50. I've only known him for the past 7 years! It is a wonderful story. Check tomorrow's entry for the story.

Cake Failure - January 22, 2008

Oh my! I have my 2nd class tonight in beginner's cake decorating, and was supposed to bring a frosted cake (homemade) in for tonight's class. Well, I made the cake okay, and got it leveled just fine. Then I made up the icing we were supposed to use. We were supposed to make up the batch of icing for the cake - using half of the icing for the cake, and half to bring in to use tonight to learn to make roses and other flowers with. Well, I started to ice the first layer, and it sure took a lot of icing. Hmmm..... I should have thought something was amiss. I put the top layer on, and piled a bunch of icing on top of it, and was starting to spread it, when it hit me. I was supposed to use the giant icing bag and this huge wide tip to spread the icing with. I remembered being instructed on how to do that, so I stopped what I was doing, and I put the rest of the icing in the pastry bag, and proceeded to finish the cake with that. Luckily, the cake icing sets up in about 15 minutes, so you can take some parchment paper and smooth it out with a smoothing tool, and it doesn't look THAT bad now, but at least I know that from now on, I'll never make THAT mistake again. I had to make up another batch of icing for tonight's class to use for learning how to make the roses and other flowers. I guess I shouldn't write myself off of this as a hobby, just because I messed up on my first cake. But boy do I feel dumb. One thing is for sure - I now know how to ice a cake properly. On to class tonight, probably with the worst looking cake there. Sad but true. I got my blood pressure up so high, over a CAKE for goodness sake! Nothing like making a mistake for learning how to do it right next time. I need a drink.

Get To Know Me!

A little about me - I'll be 55 in a month (how did THAT happen?), and am happily married to Michael for 30 years. He is a retired Judge. We have one daughter, who is getting married this June. I'm making the wedding cake. We live in the Blue Ridge Mountains of Virginia, in a small University town. Which means in the summers, it is nice and quiet, and then in August, the students start coming in, and in May they start leaving. The town really bustles when the students are here. But they keep the town young and hip. I'm a quilter, a knitter, a painter, a jewelry maker, and a mixed media artist. And now a cake maker. I have a nice studio to do all these things in. I'm looking forward to linking my blog with others, and keeping up with this. Right now, it is 9 degrees outside, with a wind chill of minus 2. YIKES! We have 8 dogs - 4 Pomeranians: Sweetpea, Darcy, Oliver, and Archimedes. We have 4 mixed breed dogs - one is a terrier mix, we inherited from my MIL when she passed away, named Mickey, and 1 cocker mix, named Brownie, we rescued from the pound, then 1 Pomeranian mix dog, Alice, that we rescued from the pound, and Madison, a hound dog of some sort, that we rescued from the pound. It is kinda chaotic around here. I fell a couple of months ago, and broke my sternum in half, and it has had a hard time healing, and hurts like crazy. I'll add some pictures in the next couple of days. Annie

How I found my Dad!

My mother decided to tell me, when I was 16, that the guy I had been calling Daddy, was in fact, NOT my father. He was my stepfather. She told me that she was married before and had me with her first husband but while she was pregnant with me, her husbnad left her and didn't want to know anything about me, didn't try to find out about me or anything. I asked what his name was, and she wouldn't tell me. So I had to wait until I was 21 and could legally get a copy of my birth certificate that showed my real father's name was - Edward Melvin Minium. And it noted that he was 31 at the time I was born and that he was a Chemical Engineer. Well, I had always wondered how come I looked nothing like my stepfather, and not much like my mother, but never thought anything more about it. But with the arrival of the internet, I spent some time searching for Ed Minium. When I turned 50, I finally found an Edward Melvin Minium who was listed as being 81 and living in Sonora, California. I thought that was just too easy -that HAD to be the guy - 31 when I was born, and 50 years later, 81 when I was 50. And such an unusual name. With the help of my therapist, who warned me that these things don't always work out, I set out to write him a letter - all I really wanted was a photograph of him, so I could see if I looked like him. So I wrote the letter telling him the details of my birth, according to my mother and the birth certificate, and why I thought he was my father. I put it in an envelope marked confidential and personal, because surely he had moved on in his life. I put all my contact info in the letter and just asked for a photo. I put my IM names on the computer in the letter.One night, about 4 days after I sent the letter, I got an IM from him asking if he could phone me in 10 minutes -my heart raced - yes, I answered. Then I went into the den where my husband was and told him. I told him to answer the phone for me, and then hand it off to me. My dad did call in 10 mintes,and asked to speak to me, and my voice was all trembly, and I asked if I got it right, and he said yes, that he was my father. And he said he had been looking for me all these 50 years. And he told me the truth - that my mother was pregnant with me, and he was in the process of divorcing his first wife - 2 weeks away from the final decree.My mother wanted to get married right away. And he said lets wait for the two weeks, so he didn't get into trouble being a bigamist. She would have none of that. And when he went home thatnight, he came back the next morning to talk to her some more and she was gone - lock,stock and barrel. They would not tell him where she had moved to or when she left. He was devastated, and he hired a private detective to try to find her, but the closest he got was to see her coming out of a building with a baby stroller with me in it. And that is all. He could not get an address or phone number. My dad finally gave up after 2 years, and he remarried someone else, and ended up divorcing her too. Then he found Leslie, his current wife, and has been married to her since then. He is very happy. Well, he was thrilled that I found him, and welomed me to his family. I found out that I have one half sister, and 2 half-brothers, from his first wife - so they are all older than me. I am the baby of the family. And I was able to fly out and meet and visit with them that summer and we now IM every night, if possible. And the thing is, he wanted me! It was NOT like my mother told me - that he wasn't interested in me - he is interested in all things about me. And although we were not raised together, it is amazing howalike we are. We call it TPIAP -two peas in a pod. And yes, I look a lot like him.And that is our story. And my therapist was amazed - she said these things don't usually work out, but she applauds my willingness to be disappoined, but somehow I knew it was going to be okay.