Thursday, September 29, 2011


I am sitting here so totally heartbroken for one of my dear friends. I just found out that in February of this year, Joe's body was done fighting CF and he went Home to live with the Lord.

I met this sweet lady in the late 80s when I subbed for her at work while she went off and got married (to a Coastie). I didn't really know her when I took the job, but we got to know each other and became FRIENDS. She is a person who would do anything for anyone. Super sweet.

In January of 1992 she gave birth to her precious son Joe. What a treasure he was to his mom and dad. He was such a little cutie guy. He was perfect in every way, but one....he was born with Cystic Fibrosis. CF if a genetic disease that affects the lungs and pancreas. I only know about this stupid disease, because my little brother was born with it. I wish I didn't know what it was. I wish it didn't exist.

As a Christian, there are things that I just don't understand but I trust that God has life taken care of, but I don't have to like parts of this life. I hate that there is disease, I hate that there is deep heartache. I love that He takes care of us when we are broken. He takes care of us when we hit the bottom and we have no way of getting up without His help. Joe was a Christian guy. I know where he is right now, and that makes me smile. He is not suffering any more. There are no more pills. No more hospital visits. No more needles.

I'm the most sad for my friend, Wende. I don't think I can even come close to imagining what she's had to go through this year. I'm thankful that she knows the Lord and will continue to look to Him for strength. I also know, that because of who she is, she has a lot of people to love and support her.

This is a sad post, and I apologize, but the main point of it is to ask you all for your prayers for Wende and Jerry and everyone who was touched by Joe's special life. I also would like to ask for prayers for my brother, Blake and another friend, Matt, who has CF and all the families affected by this stupid disease.

Saturday, September 24, 2011

College?? Psha...she's DONE!

Well, Anisa is now a certified Pastry Chef. She has her AA degree in Pastry and Baking. It's weird to think that I have a baby who is now done with one degree (she's not sure what's next).

On Wed, 9-21-11, we trecked into the city to the Building Museum for her Portfolio Show. All the graduates show off what they have learned/what they do. Some have their AA, some have finished their BA. There are culinary students, graphic artists, musicians, video artists....a little bit of everything artsy. :)

The day actually started on Tuesday. Anisa had to go into school to make her desserts. She chose to make french macarons. Macarons are actually like little puff cookies with a frosting-ish center. Lots of people know of the coconut macarOOns, but those are not the traditional french cookie. Macarons can be made of almost any flavor combination you want. She chose to make Orange Creamsicle (by Daddy's request), Lemon-Lime, and Raspberry. There is an exact method to making macarons (I found this blog and it tells an adorable story of making them and how they are so temperamental). The humidity in the air has to be just right, the batter has to be beaten just right, the oven temp has to be just right...there are many many ways to ruin the little cookies, and only a couple of ways to make them perfectly. They have to have a perfect "foot", and a perfectly domed little top. I'm so proud of my baby who made very nice looking and tasting french macarons...I didn't know she had it in her! :)So, on Wed, we drove into DC in rush hour traffic. Our normally 20-30 minute drive became an hour long stop and go fest. Luckily we had Toby Keith, Jason Aldean and Blake Shelton to keep us company. Plus, we can always find stuff to talk about, other drivers to talk smack about, etc. :) We arrived at the Building Museum right on time. Anisa ran in to find her table and we started unloading. Luckily, her table was right between her 2 good friends from school, Shakyla and Sama'Ria.The idea of the Portfolio show (from what I can understand) is to basically show what they've made in their Capstone class. She had to "build" a bakery from the ground up. She had to find a property, shop for it - ovens, counters, sinks, tables, lamps, display cases, etc. then come up with her total business plan. She chose to name her "bakery" CRUMBS. She came up with her menu and logo. We had shopped and I had sewn for this event. We ran to Joann's and found some cute fabric to make her a tablecloth and a cute little apron. We hit the Container Store and found some little spice racks to display her little macarons. Target was where we found her little 3-tier dessert holder. Then off to Michaels for flowers and ribbon. She was set. Didn't really know what to expect once we got to the show, but her table turned out to be one of the most decorated/pretty tables. :) I helped her get her stuff inside, then headed home to get Travis. It only took me half hour to get home. :)Travis and I headed BACK into DC, found parking and went into the show. There were potential employers, teachers from the school and of course, friends and family. It was fun to see all the other chefs/artists and what they made. We walked around, tasted some of the other foods, looked at the art and listened to music. We chatted with some of the other students then went upstairs to watch our baby at work. We watched as people would stop at her table and she would explain her business and desserts. We really enjoyed seeing people's reactions to her macarons. As one of the chefs took a bite, we saw him nod his head positively. She smiled and chatted and just looked cute. :)She said she was nervous about the whole show, but when it was all finally over and done, she was disappointed that it was over. I was amazed to look through her portfolio to see all the work she had done to "build" her bakery. It was one of those "Wow, I didn't realize my kid could do something like that", proud mommy moments. Of course, I'm proud of my kids, they're awesome (except for those times when they're being little turds, but that's normal). But sometimes they do stuff that still shocks me. God really did give me some GOOD girls. I'm gonna really enjoy watching them as they become productive citizens....and I hope you all can enjoy some of Anisa's sweets someday. :)

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Some of my latest stuff

Well, I've been a little busy crafting lately. Lots of fabric, but not lots of quilts. BAGS! Yep, some might call me a bag lady, but it's just a phase. :) (*click on the pics to make them big).

It started when Sara needed a cosmetic bag for her AGT adventure. I looked at patterns/tutorials on the internet for a little bag that was easy to make. I found this awesome tutorial. I tried it and I.LOVE.IT! It's SO SUPER EASY and fast to make these little bags. I've made about 5 or 6 of them, since Sara's friends have seen them and have wanted them. Plus, my kids needed them. Oh, and btw, we ended up finding a Vera Bradley bag for Sara for her bigger stuff, but she uses her little cupcake bag for smaller things. :) Here's one of the little cupcake bags I did and one with Hello Kitty. Not loving the handles on the cupcake bag, but since I made this one, I've managed to perfect the handles. :)

While scanning through the tutuorials, I found this incredibly cute site/pattern. I made the little lunch bag cuz I liked the idea of it (it's the second tutorial down on the right side of her blog). After I made it, it was sitting around and I thought I'd better take it to LA in case I couldn't use my Eddie Bauer little backpack/purse (we were told we couldn't have any logo gear in the audience). This was THE.PERFECT.BAG for my sudoku book, The Help (which is a great book, go get it and read it), and lots of snacks (I was the snack mom). I put some iron-on vinyl inside in case any liquids spilled, but probably won't do that again. It's too crunchy. Anyway, here are 2 of them that I made...the purple one is the one I took to LA, the sushi one is on it's way to it's new home. :)

I also made this little pyramid/teepee bag that I found here. I like this tutorial, but I wish it was all on one page (you have to click on NEXT to see the next step). Oh well. I use it for my little tylenol, advil, pepto bismol, etc that I keep in my purse. :)

Another project that I've had in my brain for a while is a WSDT waterproof blanket for the cold, rainy, wet football games that we will be sitting through, starting this Friday night. This is the official logo of the team for now. Coach J made it and it's now on everything. :) heehee Anyway, this is just one of the tied fleece blankets, but I sewed on the logo made of silver metallic fabric, BUT inside, I sewed that rubberized flannel (you know the kind they make baby mattress covers out of). So, now when Sara sits on the damp, metal, freezing bleachers, she won't get wet OR freezing. :) It's THICK and HEAVY! But, I like it and I'm sure it will get lots of use and Sara will have lots of people huddling around her to snuggle in it.

So, now for the non-crafty picture. I found this while we were at Michael's yesterday and had to buy them. They're good, but I had to have them cuz of the name. :) heehee

Why were we at Michaels you ask? Well, Anisa will be all done with her AA degree in Baking and Pastry tomorrow. Today she will be cooking macarons all day at school, then tomorrow she'll present them to employers, chefs and family/friends. It's part of her capstone class. She had to "build" her bakery from the ground up. this is the final presentation, so yesterday we spent the day shopping for the last minute display items she needed. I will make a whole post on that after her presentation with pictures and everything. Of course, we're super proud of our girl. Now, she just needs to get a job! :)

Tuesday, September 13, 2011


Wow, I'm getting pressure to post, so I better do it before anyone kills any poor defenseless creatures! heehee Julie, I still love you, but I'm sad you didn't go make sure the little guy was dead. He maybe suffered a painful death.

Ok, on to happy things. As most of you know, Sara's dance team, The Fabulous WSDT, was on America's Got Talent. We left on August 1st thinking that we would be there for a week. That turned into 3.5 weeks, then a 4.5 day break then another week. It was fun, but super tiring and stressful for the kids and coaches. They had their first routine DOWN since it was their Nationals routine that they had been performing for a year (with a few tweaks/new music). But they had 3 days to make up, learn and clean their next 3 routines. Us parents were only there to be GoFers...Go fer lunch. Go fer make up. Go fer this and that. We also got to do a little sightseeing in LA/Bev Hills, so it was fun, I just with the kids could have done more playing. We DID get to take them to the Santa Monica pier one night and they had a great time, but at night, it's a little scary to take 17 teenagers who are cute to an amusement park type area with strangers. I've posted most of the pictures on Facebook, but I'll stick some on here too. :)

When we got home from our trip to CA, Sara had to start school. Lucky for her, we had major flooding in the area and school was canceled on Friday (the day after we got home). She started school yesterday AS A SENIOR! OMG. I can't believe it. Here's my baby on her first day...

I also finished a quilt on our little 4.5 day break to send to my friend Amber who just had her 3rd baby boy (pray for her). :) Her and her husband have rival college teams. She's an Iowa Hawkeye and he is an Ohio Buckeye. So, i thought it would be appropriate to make the quilt in their team colors. The pattern is called Anita's Arrowheads, but in our house, it's called Anisa's Arrowheads. My friend Ann Marie gave me the suggestion and it was a good one. Super fun pattern.

I'll post more pics later of all the fun I'm having making little bags. I'm on my way right now to make some more so I must quit for now. Have a super great day. :)