Sunday, February 27, 2011

. . . our little piece of winter. . .

I know that many of you have had so much snow that you don't want to even think about getting any more. . . but this morning. . . here in Tucson,  Arizona . . . this is what we woke up to. . . & we are very excited!





Bailey didn't seem to mind it at all!. . . 


. . . he came out with me (me still in my jammies!) to the front yard to capture all we could. These were taken a little after 6 am. . . &  although the sun hadn't risen yet, I wanted to get as many photos as I could, because I knew that the soft fluffy snowflakes could turn to rain at any moment.

Here's my sweet little rosemary topiary at the from walk. . .


. . . & here's a shot of our street . . . no drifts (not even close!). . . but we are loving our  up to 1" . . . & it has sparked our wonderment & awe of the beauty of it all. . .


. . . & we will be needing to rely on our memories of it all. . . as it will be in the mid-70's by mid-week!  (. . . I just love winter here!) 
 Bren  


Tuesday, February 22, 2011

… x x x



I saw this video a few weeks ago & then again on a blog yesterday. . . & I think it's just too good not to share. . . 




 (& hugs!)  Bren

Sunday, February 20, 2011

… the comforts of home



I just love the look of the 'crema' (the thin layer of foam at the top of a cup of espresso) when it includes the chocolate used when making a mocha. . .


. . . it looks so soothing & almost perfect! . . .

. . . almost.


. . . ahhh. . . there. . . now this is one of the comforts of home that I do love.

I have to admit that it's so fun to get away. . . but for me, it's even better coming home.

Last week, I took a working 'retreat' to San Diego. . . (where I grew up & my Dad still has a timeshare). . . & while a had a great time, I actually came home a day early. The weather was beautiful most of the time - but at the end it was turning a bit messy. . . & since I drove there & the weatherman kept mentioning that the mountains could get snow. . . I decided to head home a day early.

I got home on Thursday evening. . . & I've been kept very busy the last few days shipping orders that came in while I was gone. . . (thank you for all you who ordered from the website!. . .  your orders have been shipped!) & while I had great weather to travel by last Thursday, it seems that the storms that were approaching California at the end of last week. . . have made their way here. So, we've had a couple of grey, windy, cold & drizzley days. . .

. . . perfect 'mocha' weather!   (. . . but then, almost any weather is perfect 'mocha' weather to me!)

Bren

Monday, February 14, 2011

… a day the share the love. . .



I just love this day. . . don't you?
. . . not the hype about selling lots of flowers, chocolates, & gems. . .
. . . but the thoughts & expressions of love behind it all. 

Our hearts are such precious things. . .
 . . . & the hearts of those we treasure. . . even more precious.

So, for this day that we remember & celebrate St. Valentine. . . 
. . . & the way he stood for love. . .
. . . & the way he made sure that those he loved - knew it. . .

 . . .  I wish for you a wonderful day. . .
. . . celebrating your heart . . .
. . . & celebrating the love that we all have to share. . .

xoxo!
Bren

And now abide faith, hope, love, these three;
 but the greatest of these is love.
1 Corinthians 13:13

Monday, February 7, 2011

daybook ::37::




for today :: February 7, 2011

outside my window. . .   dark & a chilly 37°! 
(There's just a sliver of a moon. . . & it's only 3:45 a.m. I woke up at about 12:30 & after a couple of hours, I gave up falling back asleep. . . & so I've been updating my book list (in the left column) & thought it would be fun to do this week's daybook - before dawn even arrives! . . .

I am thinking. . . of what projects I want to prep for a personal retreat that I'm taking soon.

from the kitchen. . .  just the night-light over the stove. . . but turning on the coffee sounds really tempting. . .

I am wearing. . .  jammies. (with a side of quilts & a soft warm puppers curled up beside me.

I am creating. . .  finishing the quilting on the last of my two new embroidery projects. Also the sketchbook is filled with bunches of new ideas. . . I could fill a book!

I am remembering. . .  honestly. . . not much at this hour(!).

I am reading. . .   'The Scarlet Thread' - by Francine Rivers. 

I am hoping . . .  to do better at walking. . . (I've been slacking a bit.)

I am hearing. . .  the heater just kicked on. . . otherwise just the soft whirl of my laptop fan. . . (oh, & the little snores of said puppers)

around the house. . .  I've got projects in all sorts of stages in the studio. I still have winter quilts out - but I'm thinking that will get changed in the next week as out temperatures are going back up to spring-like temps! (yea!)

I am going. . .  later today. . . (after the sun rises. . .) to the market. I'm out of almost everything except milk & oatmeal!

one of my favorite things. . .  soups. . . I'm a soup girl. . . wouldn't mind having it every day.

a few plans for the rest of the week. . . prepping new projects. . . getting bindings ready for 3 quilts. . . & taking Dad out to lunch.

from my picture journal . . .

Hope you have a week filled with wonder!
Bren

Saturday, February 5, 2011

… a wee bit chilly



(Okay. . . actually. . . in my heart I want to say how incredibly cold it's been. . . but in respect for all the folks who live in the midwest & east that have had such overwhelming amounts of snow & cold. . . I wont. . .  (quite).)



But. . . oh my! For a town in southwest Arizona, we have had quite the chilly temps! For several days, we broke the records (some back to the 1800's, & some for all time) for overnight lows & daily temps. I have lived here for 20 years & every winter we have a few nights of a hard frost warnings when we have to cover over the small plants, but we actually had a few days where the highs didn't even get out of the 20's (F)! It was down into the teens overnight & with wind-chill, we actually hit 0°! If we would have had any precipitation - we would have had quite a bit of snow.  . . . But we didn't. . . just cold. (. . . um, I mean *chilly temps*.)  If it weren't so serious - it was kind of amusing to hear the evening newscasters trying to warn & teach folks about how easy it would be to get frostbite & hypothermia.


Here. . . in Southern Arizona. . . Incredible.

The photos are from a couple of the fountains that we have in the backyard that became frozen. (Too bad there weren't any birdies there. . . they could have had some great ice-skating parties!) (click on the photos to see all the frosty goodness!)


Okay. . . (again). . . I actually was quite excited about all this! It is great fun to have such a difference in weather here. . . & to get yo wear my wool coat!  (Although I did feel bad for the folks who travelled here to get away from the winter weather back home.)


And. . . to end this little post in a fairy tale sort-of way. . . we should be back into the 70's by Monday! 

Hope you have a great weekend! (. . . keep warm!)


 Bren

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

… a bit of a break




. . . I didn't mean to take a blogging break. . . it just kinda happened. I thought of you all often. . . I just didn't have the words for what was in my heart, & every time I thought about blogging, I just couldn't. I guess it was time that I have needed to be able to share what has been going on.


First,  for all of you who might be followers of my blog for a while . . . Dad & Bailey are just fine. (In fact, we just celebrated Dad's 83rd birthday yesterday!) Actually, the events of January have brought us even closer & have reminded us of letting each other know how much we treasure each other. I have learned so much in the past month. . . have been shown so much this last month. . . & have really searched my heart.


It all started with the start of the new year - that had me searching for a word that would be my 'word for the year'. I had a couple & I was trying to narrow it down. . . & then on a sunny Saturday morning our world - here in Tucson - was turned upside down. I live northwest of Tucson, & at a neighborhood shopping center gathering of citizens (including children) & our local U.S. Representative, a tragic shooting occurred, taking the lives of 6 innocent victims (including a 9 year old girl) & wounding many more. It was one of those things that most of us think happens 'somewhere else'. . . not in my community. I know that the national media covered this tragedy - as our U.S. Representative, Gabby Giffords was critically wounded (. . . & has not only survived - but made miraculous strides in her recovery) . . . & I know that I heard several of the national media people state that they were touched by the response of the Tucson community . . . & I think that this is what is so difficult to express, & why I came short with the words when it came to posting anything for the last several weeks.


For most of the country, I know that other news has replaced the events of 1-8-11 here in Tucson. . . but for those who live here . . . those events have changed us. No longer do we take daily things for granted. . . we have done so much hugging of our loved ones & of expressing to our family & friends how much they mean to us. . . I have seen my community come together to protect the families of those who lost members, by wearing white &  lining the roads to the churches where the services occurred - when a radical 'cult' (my term for them) threatened to protest at the memorial services. . . & even now - the memorials at the hospital & the market where the shooting occurred still grow. People still bring flowers, notes & candles to express their respect & how much they care.


I have heard tragic news stories many times before - but this one. . . so close to home. . . has had a profound effect on me. 


I wasn't expecting that.


. . . but it has helped me clarify so many things. . . things that I had been pushing onto the back burner time & time again. . . things that I realized I needed to be honest with myself about. I had been given a big wake-up call.  I'm sure that some of those will be popping up here on my blog. . . I can tell you that you will probably see some subtle changes. What I do know is that I'm listening to my heart. No more pushing it onto the back burners any longer. (. . . Sorry if this is a bit vague. . . I'm sure that over time. . . it will become clearer.)


Now, . .  since I don't want you to think that I haven't been 'working' (. . . I still find it funny to call it 'working'!) on anything. . . I have! (. . . she said with a big happy grin!) The top photo is a hint. . . do remember this quilt? It is called 'Seasons'. . . & has always been one of my favorites. One day, about a year ago!)  a sweet customer told me that she loved it - but wished it was available for embroidery. . .


. . . Yep. . . How could I not. . .? Here's a little peek - just before it went out the door to my quilters'. . . 


. . . (there's also a redwork version!) The pattern has some changes. . . & options & it should all be ready by the end of the month. . . & I'll be giving you more peeks soon!

Also. . . I don't want to end this post without letting you know how much I appreciate your visiting my blog. (. . . especially if you got all the way through this post!). . . & when you leave comments - well, please know that you often make my day. 


So thanks. . . & please remember to hug someone you love today.


  Bren


To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven. . .   
- Ecclesiates 3:1

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