I was at the pet store a couple of weeks ago and saw a little bag of catnip that you grow.  The bag lies on it’s side and the top is partially cut and peeled back.  Then you water and close the lid.  After a bit, the catnip grows.  I thought it was a great idea so I brought the little bag home, cut and watered and placed it in my garden window.  It grew!


Taking a good look.

At first the cats didn’t know what to do with it.  They have had many toys with catnip inside, but never the fresh variety.


Nom Nom

It didn’t take them long to figure it out!!  They were so funny after – running around, chasing each other and then a super long nap!


My ceramics class is still so much fun!  We learned about underglaze in one of my classes this session so I tried it out.



I made this coaster (I know it’s a little wonky) by cutting out a square of the clay, using a rubber stamp for the image and then using underglaze to paint.  It was a great learning experience.  After the coaster was bisque fired, I glazed it.  I found it interesting how the colors of the underglaze changed after glazing and final firing.  The next step will be to make some test tiles to make sure I know what the underglaze will do in order to get a consistent finished product that I like.


I really enjoy making hats – they knit or crochet up so quickly!  A friend of mine has a sister who organizes a fun run and one of the things they like to give out are hats to the finishers.  A couple of weeks ago my friend was asking our knitting group is any of us had a hat we would like to donate.  But of course!!!


Hats for a charity.

These are the hats I donated.  I like all of them (I didn’t give her the ones I thought were duds) and I’m happy that they are going to a good cause.

Family Lunch

Over the Thanksgiving weekend we were all together as a family, all seven of us.  We really had such a great time!  We started out in Santa Barbara to pick up the UCSB daughter and we hung out there hiking, going to the beach and eating.  We had lunch at a nice place that had seating outside.  The weather was perfect!


Waiting for lunch.

This is taken after our hike and before lunch.  Based on how hungry they claimed to be, I am surprised at those smiling faces!


The card shark.

We passed the time waiting for our food to be delivered by playing Uno.  This guy just laid down a draw four card on me, hence the smug look on his face.  And yes, he did go on to win!


Drawing away.

The artist – her favorite thing to do is draw – this was while we were waiting for the check to come.IMG_1773

I really love her drawings, but I’m not biased or anything!


Hand quilting a long.  Kathy is hosting a hand-quilt-a-long which I have happily jumped into!  All the information to join this HQAL is here.  I have chosen my grandmother’s flower garden that I started awhile back and has been sitting in it’s box because I didn’t care for the surface embroidery.


The first “flower”.

This is the start.  Each flower will have the same yellow center, then a darker second ring, and a lighter coordinating third ring.  Each flower will then have the white around it and will be attached to the green.  Where there are not green hexis, green hexis will be added.  All are hand pieced but then I got lazy.


Ugly machine surface embroidery.

Instead of doing what I really had in mind (small hand embroidered flowers and leaves), I used my machine to add the surface embroidery you see in the above photo.  I truly hate it.  I will be ripping all those stitches and then adding my own hand embroidered ones.  The quarter is to show the size of each hexi.IMG_1753

The next flower will be those fun purple colors that you see.  Hopefully I’ll have some good progress to show the next time.

Please take a look at the other people who are participating in this HQAL:

KathyBellaLoriMargaretKerryEmmaTracyDebDeborah,  Susan , Jessisca  and Sherry

Happy Thanksgiving

Happy Thanksgiving!!!IMG_1778

from our family.  I know it’s a day late, but we were out and about yesterday, ALL of us!  It’s really so nice to be with all the kids again.  Happy Thanksgiving to everyone who celebrates and a great day to all those who do not.

Color Factory

I did an irresponsible thing…I pulled the kids out of school early.  More than a month ago I bought tickets to the Color Factory Museum.  You buy tickets for a certain day and time and if you are 30 minutes late you lose your ticket.  When I finally got into the system, all weekend, evening and holiday tickets were gone – that left only times during school.  A responsible parent would have said, “Oh, well, I guess we’ll just try again when the next batch goes on sale”…Not this parent.  This parent checked the schedule for classes that would be easier to miss and scheduled a tour at that time.  Bad Mommy!


The Color Factory.

You can see how the three still in school are so disappointed to be missing class.


Burying dad in confetti.

There were so many fun interactive rooms like this one.  We actually had an all out confetti throwing fight in here – luckily we were the only ones in the room at that time!


The yellow room.

This huge ball pit was the last room and was so much fun!  It was really had to walk through it though.  The kids and us parental units had a blast.  This Bad Mommy is glad she did what she did!


Right after Halloween I was at Cost Plus World Market and bought several scone  and pancake mixes.  This scone mix was a complete hit!


Peppermint Chocolate Chip.


Fresh out of the oven.


The last one.

15 minutes later, this is the last one!  This was a good mix!

Salt & Pepper Shakers

I LOVE my salt and pepper shakers.  Whenever we go somewhere, if I see a cute set, I just have to have them.  It’s almost as bad as yarn!  I like having a reason to set some of them out so our family Thanksgiving dinner was the perfect time!


Little robot from New York.

Half of his body is filled with salt and the other half with pepper.  The salt and pepper come out of the knobs on his head.


Blown glass from an art fair in Santa Barbara.

I actually have several sets of these in different sizes.  Each time we go to the art fair on the beach in Santa Barbara I find a set that I just have to have.


Giraffes from the San Diego Zoo.

These were just so cute I couldn’t pass them up!


Whales from Mystic Seaport.


Little turtles from Maui.

I have several more sets of shakers but these were the ones that made it out to the table this year.  They all make me smile when I look at them!


We host our big family Thanksgiving celebration the Saturday before Thanksgiving.  We started this many years ago as cousins and siblings were getting married and would have to split the holidays.  My husband and I decided that the actual day was not as important as having the family together.  We usually have a full house.  Some years more and some years less, this year we had 20.


Table One

Each year it’s always interesting how the tables are going to be arranged.  This is the DH’s job and he takes it very seriously – this year was relatively short as it only took about 2 1/2 hours to decide how to arrange them.


Table Two.

This year he decided to have two tables instead of one long one.  We have had many iterations including the year we had 37 people come and he placed the tables in a huge rectangle with an open center where he put a little round table for all the kids.  The kids had a fantastic time because the were allowed to crawl under the “adult” tables to get to their table.  Now most of the kids are older, the youngest being 5 years old.


Sand Candles made by my kids.

Each table had a few sand candles that the kids had made.


More Sand Candles.

As soon as the evening was over, and we saw how far the candles had burned down, they all said they wanted to make more.  This will be a good summer time activity!



I managed to get the appetizers out before the first guests arrived.  This may sound like a no brainer, but sometimes I don’t actually get them out in time.


Shrimp wrapped with snow peas.

This is a favorite for my kids.  They were disappearing almost as fast as I could make them before I kicked them out of the kitchen!


Deviled eggs.

This is another favorite.  Unfortunately my chickens have stopped laying eggs so about half of these are store bought.  The chickens are molting and it is getting colder so egg production is non-existent right now.


Vegetable platter.

You might notice that this is a strange platter to be using for vegetables.  Indeed it is!!  I dropped my segmented vege platter which broke into a zillion little pieces and had to improvise.  I introduce my new vege platter which doubles as the baking dish for scones.


Spicy artichoke and spinach dip with crackers.

This was a new dip I was trying out.  It was ok, not great.  Back to the drawing board for this one.

I have no pictures of the actual dinner or dinner food.  Once everyone arrived everything was super busy.  It was really a nice time eating, chatting and just hanging out with family.  These are the best times and times I am truly thankful for.