Tuesday, November 30, 2010


 Here are the old guy's pies made from scratch!  One had a streusel topping and the other was a coconut and almond topping ~ both pretty good!  I'm not sure the kids liked them but Grampa and I are enjoying the heck out of the leftovers this week!
Teddy and family came up to the lake Wednesday and left Friday ~ we had lots to eat and a fun game of charades on Thursday night!  It's fun when the kids are old enough to participate in such things ~ it was actually their idea and we had some laughs for sure!!!  My impression of a turkey definitely made my daughter-in-law laugh a lot!

These guys are my oldest and my youngest sons having a little bonding time ~ a picture that warms this  mother's heart!  Tad , the oldest and the smaller one of the two, stays to himself a lot but Teddy had something to offer him that even got Tad's attention ~ his computer!  Ted showed him how to look up things on YouTube ~ he loves music videos and honestly, the kid spent the entire afternoon and evening sitting at the table looking up the names of singers he likes.  Tad can read and spell  enough to enjoy books and magazines about television and movies, etc. ~ he loves the entertainment industry a lot!  The kids suggested getting him a Notebook for Christmas and it sounds swell to me.  I never thought of it before and it will help fill Tad's time ~ I hope he doesn't set up a Facebook page!!  For those of you who are newer readers, my oldest son, Tad, has Down's Syndrome ~ he's 45 ~ he lives with us and is very functional and says "I love my life"!  What could be better!
Saturday, Sonny and I went to Pemberville for the Christmas celebration ~ saw Santa riding along on the carriage rides!  Last year, when we took Luke, Santa wasn't riding ~ so that was fun ~ seeing Santa always warms my heart ~ I still believe ~ do you?

Just a quick picture of the Pumpkin House rug ~ I attached it to the back of this chair in the kitchen -keeping room.  I decided I like it so much that I wanted to see it all the time ~ it looks good there, me thinks!  FromMeToThee asked on a previous post about hooking hurting our wrists ~ I don't have that problem but I know it's often suggested to use more than one hook ~ alternate between the two and to give your hand a rest.  I hope that never happens to me ~ I love to hook ~ although, I haven't done much lately!
That's it for today ~ I am going to post a recipe ~ and then I'm off for some errand running!  Ta ta for now!



By popular demand! I am posting the famous Monkey Bread/Monkey Balls recipe ~ enjoy!
This is the actual picture of the one I baked ~ looks pretty good, hm?  Okay ~ here goes!


1 35 oz. pkg. frozen cinnamon sweet roll dough or dinner roll dough

2/3 c. chopped pecans or walnuts

1/3 c. melted butter
1    c. sugar w/ 1 T. cinnamon mixed in
1/3 c. caramel ice cream topping
1 T. maple flavored syrup

1. Grease a baking sheet. Place frozen rolls 2" apart on the prepared baking sheet.  Chill in refrigerator over night to let dough thaw and begin to rise.

2.  Generously grease a 10" fluted tube pan.  Sprinkle 1/3 c. of the nuts into the bottom of the tube pan.

3.  Preheat oven to 350 deg.   If pkg. of rolls contains 12 rolls, cut them in half or if it is a larger quantity, leave rolls whole.  Dip each roll into melted butter, then roll in sugar-cinnamon mixture and arrange in tube pan.  Drizzle with remaining butter, sprinkle with any remaining sugar mixture, and sprinkle the remaining 1/3 c. nuts on top.

4.  Combine caramel topping and maple syrup - drizzle over the dough. and place tube pan on large baking sheet.

5.  Bake  40-45 min. or until golden brown.  I may have baked longer to make sure the rolls were done in the middle of the pan.  Remove from oven, let stand on wire rack for a minute or two and then invert on large serving platter.  Spoon any remaining topping and nuts from the pan onto the rolls.  Cool slightly and serve warm!  They are wonderfully gooey ~ hope you like them!!! 

Wednesday, November 24, 2010


 Finally!  Thought I better post the rugs we all worked on while at the Woolley Fox three weeks ago ~ time flies!  This upside down photo is my rug ~ 1668 GEOMETRIC ~ with each design done in a variety of paisleys.  I'm fortunate to have quite a collection of bits and pieces and as Barb laid them all out on her work table, in color categories, it was obvious to hook the design in that way.  The design looks to me like a Dresden Plate quilt pattern which will stand out nicely  in a black confetti background.  The upside down numbers will be done in 'friendship' strips ~ each one of my hooking pals gave me a strip from their rug ~ it will be a little remembrance of our fun week!  And I think I have a neat idea for the border ~ I have to get the rug done first and then we'll see how that develops!  I haven't hooked on this rug since I got home ~ it really would go pretty fast if I'd set my mind to it!  The last design will be done in shades of orange paisley ~ maybe this weekend?!

This beautiful rug is being hooked by "Minnesota Mary" ~ she's gonna love that name!!  The design is called SAUGUS ~ aren't the colors just fabulous?  Mary started this rug at another class although she hooks very fast, I didn't want you to think she got her rug almost finished in our three days!! It's a big one, too!

 This nice horsey rug ~ SNYDER MAGDALENA ~  is Donna's ~ our leader!  Donna puts this group together and a fine job she does!  We have the best time and like the same things ~ hooking, shopping, eating ~ and we're very  good at all those things!  This rug is another big one and required a lot of color planning ~ I would never have this all figured out by the time I left ~ good luck, Miss Donna ~ and thanks for including me on your list!!!!!!

TENNESSEE HEARTS!  That's Maria's rug of choice this time ~ done in lovely soft colors to go with her new decor at home!  We had fun at the yarn shops and both bought Oxford punch tools to use with wool strips and big yarn ~ just a little something extra to add to a rug!!  I've tried mine out a little and getting the loops even is something I haven't quite mastered ~ it's something that's not even close to looking nice!!  Just what I need is to learn a new thing!

 Judy hooks ~ and hooks ~ and hooks!  Some of us are big talkers but look how much she accomplished in three days!!  I LOVE this rug ~ 1901 CATS  ~ and her color choices!  This is another sizable rug ~ these gals don't mess around!  I do hope the girls will send me pictures of their finished rugs, although they should all appear on Barb's website at some point in time! 

One last picture of Posie, the kitty ~ all stretched out on Maria's lap so you can all see how big she is! We had much fun with Posie  ~ she definitely is a well-loved addition to Barb's household!

I'm off to the grocery ~ we're having Thanksgiving dinner with my son, Ted and family!  They cook the bird in a cooking bag ~ very moist! They do the dressing, too, and we provide everything else!  So, I must be off before the store gets to crowded. 

Hope you enjoyed seeing our rugs and I hope you all have a great Thanksgiving, filled with lots of family and lots of food and lots of love!  Sonny and I are very thankful to have great kids and grandkids that like us and each other!  We're thankful for good health, improving business, wonderful friends and I'm very thankful for each one of you that stops by here to see what's going on in this crazy household!  I've heard that if we never say another prayer other than "Thank you", that will be enough ~ it's good to be grateful!

Have a happy weekend!

Monday, November 22, 2010


Fresh pumpkin pies ~ that's what Sonny will be making with these for Thanksgiving dinner!  Sonny ~ not me!!  He bakes halved pie pumpkins ~ puts it all in the Quisinart ~ measures it out into the amount needed for a pie ~ and seals it into packages with his vacuum sealer!!!  Now, he's all ready for his holiday pie baking!!  He thinks I'm making fun of him, but I'm not!!  If I were doing it, there are cans of pumpkin on the grocery store shelf that work  swell for me!!!!  He loves doing it and that makes us both happy!!  Just thought I would share what the mister is up to now!

We had a fun week last week ~ went to the Homebuilders Auxiliary Auction where we earned close to $7000 for our needy families at Christmas!  It never ceases to amaze me how people in our building industry and related businesses, open their hearts and checkbooks for this cause!  Many of us have really had an awakening in this bumpy economy over the past couple of years so it's wonderful to see this outpouring of generosity!  And the good news is that business is picking up and I couldn't be more grateful!

Today, a little shopping and an oil change are on my agenda ~ it's really windy here today ~ hope I don't blow away!  For those who know me, I think I'm safe!!!!  Have a good day!  Hook-in pictures and Woolley Fox pictures to follow ~ soon!!

Saturday, November 20, 2010


Love this one!  Dawn from Indiana ~ this is the girl who came to class and was not a 'hooker' ~ was the first to finish and send a picture of her purse! It looks great!  I'm very proud of her ~ she was a quick learner and jumped right in ~ now she wants to come back and do a proddy sheep!!  Notice her applique flower to the left ~ very 'funky'!!!  Thanks, Dawn!

Thursday, November 18, 2010


 These four gals came from Pittsburgh and Indiana to take my Funky Flower Purse class and I was so glad to have them here in my studio!  This is what they accomplished in a 6 hour class plus we took time out  for lunch and the 'house tour'!

Heidi, Charisse and Sue are local gals ~ they didn't have to travel too far to join us! I give them a choice of the purse background wool and all do basically the same pattern (my design) but have the choice of all kinds of materials that are here in the hooking room.

I teach several different hooking stitches, needle felting by hand and with my felting machine, proddy and wool applique!  We crammed a lot into our time together and as dear friend, Heidi, said at the end of the day "she was on overload"!!  It's a lot but they all hung in there and covered a lot of ground!

There were seven students and friend, Pam (in the pink shirt) came to hook and to help me serve lunch!  Thank goodness!  So nine of us in the hooking room was quite comfortable ~ it helps me to gauge how many I can take in a class for the future ~ and I think a couple more would make a nice full classroom! 

Most of the girls were from the class in Tipp City, so I asked them to bring their projects finished or not,  so I could share them with all of you!  This is Jackie's piece ~ she used the same bittersweet motif that I did but all her 'berries' are done in quilled wool, rolled wool, cats paws ~ whatever you choose to call it.  She added felting and some roving ~ it really is a great example of using alternative materials to make a design into a very artistic

Sue, wearing her lovely SKIF sweater (Nola brought these fabulous sweaters from St. Louis for us to purchase) , made her project into a pillow and used Karen Kahle's idea of prodding the edge to bring the hooked side and the wool backing together.  She did a great job ~ it looks just like Karen's finished project!!

Charisse did a mirror image of the turkey design along with oak leaves and acorns and she's doing a
crochet edging, which she left a little unfinished so she could show us how to do that.  It looks great, by the way!!!!!!!

Pam,  the lunch lady, brought hers along to work on ~ I love the purple turkey!  She did a great job on her stone fireplace, too ~ although, I think she mentioned that was a challenge to get it just right ~ and I think she did!!  Thank you, Pam, for being a good helper that day!

Here's my pal, Heidi ~ she hasn't worked on hers since we were in that class, but I wanted you to see her cute squirrel ~ if you click on the picture to enlarge, you can see that she used yarn for his tail ~ it's really quite cute!  And a spot dyed wool for the tree ~ really nice! If you remember, we were given paper patterns with various fall designs and then we made up our own rug pattern.  So all these rugs came from the same class but are vastly different ~ very interesting results!

Sue wasn't in our class but this is the rug she's working on ~ my friend, Maria Barton's pattern ~ it's a bigger pattern than I realized from just seeing a picture.  Sue will do a great job ~ she's a fun gal and a nice addition to our class that day!  When these girls finish their purses and send photos, I'll post them here for you to see ~ I think that they'll all be different but yet the same ~ I can't wait!!  They had so much fun, they're coming back in the spring for a proddy class!!! 

On Tuesday, MJ came to show me her 'first rug' done in a class here not long ago!  She did great ~ I love the texture in her crow ~ and we planned a chair pad for her next project!!  She's going to a hook-in and wanted approval that her hooking was good enough to do in public ~ I assured her it was!!! 

A long post today ~ I hope you're still hanging in there ~ it's been a busy week here, as usual!  Tonite we're going to our Homebuilders' annual charity auction and I have no gift to donate!! So, I have to head out of here and find some nice Christmasy type thing to take and hope they'll bid high ~ we adopt needy kids at Christmas so we need lots of high bids tonite!  Tomorrow, Heidi and I go hooking with the group in Akron ~ tomorrow night is the opening party for The Art Center's Holiday Fair and Saturday, I think we have a plan with Sonny's daughter!  Yikes!!  I better get out my roller skates!! 

Hope you've all had a good week ~ and get rested up because the holiday season is approaching at warp speed (my new saying)!  Take care ~

Friday, November 12, 2010

Here's my dying efforts for this week!  It takes me forever to dye wool ~ I see others that dye this and more in one day!  I work it in between office work and life and this week, I got a couple of shipments of wool, so I was washing, drying, cutting and folding most every day!!  I used Jacquard dyes on three of these ~ straight from the bottle!  The bright gold, orange and the black.  I also tried an antique black using Cushing's black and it always goes blue ~ it makes me furious!!  One of these days, I'll figure it out!!  Does anyone know if you can mix Cushing and Jacquard dyes or any others, for that matter?  I would appreciate your input!

I want to address the comment I made regarding 'junk wool' for lettering!  I really do appreciate all the comments that you left on the Pumpkin House rug ~ it really is a cute little piece!  The orange wool that I used first was a nice hand-dyed wool ~ definitely not junk ~ and then I had to pull it out because it didn't show up.  Somewhere, I have read that you use wool you ordinarily wouldn't hook with for the letters, pull it out  after the background is in and re-hook them ~ evidently others of you have heard that, as well.  They show up and stand up better!  Then you don't mind pitching the wool that was reverse hooked ~ like I minded pulling out that nice dyed orange!  One of my commenters, Newburyarts, suggested doubling a strip to get the latter to stand up ~ that is probably a good idea but my issue was the color didn't stand out as much as I thought it needed to!  Thanks for all the kind words!

I'm almost ready for my class tomorrow ~ always a few things to do ~ but I'll be ready when my gals arrive!  I'm baking a sweet treat for them to have with coffee when they arrive and quiche for lunch ~ hope it's good ~ sometimes it can get scary here in my kitchen!!!!!   If any of you are reading that are coming tomorrow, hang on to your hats!!!!! 

I wanted to tell you about my darling Mr. Kitty!  He has a new trick!  He loves my jewelry so much that I can't really let it lay out on the dresser, so I put it in the small drawers that are part of the dresser top.  Well ~ now the little beast has figured out how to OPEN the drawers!!!!!  He uses his paws like little hands and pulls them right open!!!!  I kept finding the drawers open so I thought I was forgetting to close them ~ Sonny saw them open while I was gone last week and thought I'd just left them that way!!!  Now, the culprit does it right while we're watching ~ he loves bling just like me!  My fear is that he'll scoop something out of there and carry it away, never to be seen again!  I told Sonny that I thought duct tape was in order!!!!!  Should I use it on the drawer or use it on the cat? 

Okay, people ~ I'm off!!  Tomorrow is a big day and this is one tired hooker!!  Ta ta

Thursday, November 11, 2010

I'M BACK ~ ~ ~

Two weeks ago today was my last post!  I'm still
here ~ but life gets hectic!!  I want to show you the finished "Pumpkin House" rug with it's yellow lettering!  After I got it all in, the P and the U were too close and the M was squashed ~ so I reverse hooked both of them and moved it all to the left!  Yikes ~ what an ordeal ~ I don't like letters ~ and the M is still a little funky!!   I hooked some small bits of yarn into the background to give it a little life ~ and basically, this little rug turned out pretty well!

Remember the little purse from the Tipp City class?  Well, I adorned the back of it with this felted flower pin ~ this was my prototype ~ the man I live with looked at it and said "what is that?"  Hmmmm!  Undaunted, I forged on and drew a pattern on a file folder (we were at the lake so I had no supplies to speak of) and the next ones are more symmetrical ~ more to the builder's liking!  He forgets I'm an 'artiste'  ~ symmetrical doesn't mean as much to me!   I added french knots out of a variegated yarn and some beads from a garage-sale necklace to give it a little more interest!

These are the results ~ I added the extra touches later.  This was the night before we were leaving for Ligonier and I decided to give one to each of my classmates!  I've never done that before but last year, that dear Maria gave us big huge bags for our wool and a piece of her wool to hook with ~ so I decided to reciprocate!  And I made one for Barb ~ she took the purple one to go on a new jacket! They seemed to be a big hit, so now I think I'll make some to sell!

If you've been to the Woolley Fox this year, you've already met Posie, the Maine Coon Cat!  This is the sweetest, most lovable cat I've ever met!! She has so much personality ~ everybody just loves her!  She's grown so much since we met her in April ~ I wanted to stick her in my hooking bag and bring her back to Ohio!!

We got home from Ligonier Thursday night and Friday, Sonny and I and Tad went to the lake!  We had much fun at the Paper Moon Winery in Vermillion on Saturday afternoon ~ the place was packed ~ good wine, good snacks, loud entertainment and good friends to laugh with!  And then, back to reality!!

I've been dying wool this week and washing wool that I just got in yesterday.  Saturday, a group of gals are coming for my Funky Flower Purse class ~ so I needed to boost up my dyed wool selection for sure!!  But I thought I better take the time to post, so you all don't forget me!!!  I haven't forgotten you!!

Take care ~ there are pictures of our rugs started at Barb's ~ I'll get them up here soon!  Ta ta for now!

P.S. Happy Birthday to my sister, Joyce ~ her birthday is always easy to remember because it's on Veteran's Day. Both my brothers served our country ~ one, a marine in the Korean war and the other, in the Army. Thanks to all who work to protect our freedom!