Sunday, June 24, 2012

Art Fest Midwest for 2012

There is a lot going on in Des Moines this weekend.  The Des Moines Art Festival is going on downtown by the Sculpture Garden.  Some years I go to that, but I always try to get to the other art show.  That's Art Fest Midwest. The advantage of Art Fest Midwest is that it is inside the Varied Industries Building at the Iowa State Fairgrounds, which is air conditioned.  We are supposed to reach 90 today, so that is a big consideration.  It is also on my side of town, so it's easy to get to.  An even bigger issue for me is that most of the artists at Art Fest Midwest are, as the name suggests, artists from the Midwest, including many local artists.  Also, I can usually find some small item at this show, that I can actually afford.  Most of the time I buy one of the steel flowers for yard art, but this year I bought a yarn bowl.  What a clever idea, and I really "need" more knitting paraphernalia.  I like functional art, things I can use in daily life, but are beautiful. It made for a fun afternoon. 

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Olivia and Grandma Grandma

Summer and Jill are in town this weekend with their sweet little Olivia. Olivia is almost ten months old now and really getting around.  She wasn't too sure about her strange relatives, because she hasn't seen some of us since Christmas. As the evening went on, she began to warm up to us.  Of all the photos I took, this is my favorite of Olivia, with her Great Grandma, who Jacci has titled Grandma, Grandma. This is a precious shot.

Downtown Farmers Market

I got up bright and early today, so I could go to the Downtown Farmers Market.  I am beginning a new way of eating this week, so I need to stock up on fresh veggies.  The market goes on every Saturday morning in the summer, but I seldom get there.  As I was reminded again today, it is really too crowed for my taste.

It is big, so there is lots to choose from, even this early in the season.  Now days there is lots more than produce at the market.  There is clothing, crafts, street musicians, art work, even puppets, and dogs; lots of dogs.  I'm going to check out some of the smaller farmers markets that take place around town.

I did time it right, because it was very overcast when I was there, but it didn't start raining until I was on my way home.

Tea Shopping

Friday was my day for running errands, the most important of which was Tea Shopping.  So I made a trip to the East Village to Gong Fu Tea Shop.  I was out of some of my most favorite teas, Constant Companion, Le Tour de France, Red Fruit Melange, which is excellent iced, and Garden Grove.  I try to make myself drink the ones I don't like as much, but I never want to.


Winnie and I took a nice walk around the neighborhood. Bailey had a sore leg, so he couldn't come. While we walk, I enjoy looking at the lawn art in people's yards.  I'm especially partial to turtles. I have a turtle collection in my own yard.  This stone turtle is in a yard a few blocks from my house.

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Front Yard

I love this time of year when all the Day Lilies and Daisies are in bloom.  These flowers are in the flower bed in my front yard. I made the collage on PicMonkey.

Two Cute Dogs

I actually got both dogs in the same photo.  Two Cute Dogs; Winnie and Bailey.

Sunday, June 10, 2012

Container Garden

I need more mulch, but here is my big accomplishment for today.  I cleared the mass of weeds, laid down landscape fabric, mulched, and planted the pots with tomatoes, peppers, including a few jalapenos, and herbs.  There are also a few flowers mixed in.  It took me all morning, but I am proud of the result.  A few of my turtles got to come out of the garage too.  

I made the collage at

Saturday, June 9, 2012

Yarn Overs

I learned how to knit the yarn over stitch tonight.  Thank God for YouTube "how to" videos!  After a trip to JoAnns for yarn and needles, I started this dishcloth.  The pattern is called "Grandmother's Favorite Dishcloth" and I found it first on Pinterest and then on  It's easy and I'm having fun with it.


This morning I met Mom and Jacci at Village Inn for breakfast.  We hadn't done that in a while.  The AC was cranked up too high, but the food was good.  I was playing with for the photo editing, special effects, and frame.  At this point it is free, but I suspect there will soon be charges to use at least some of this website.

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Ladder Yarn

It was Knit and Crochet Night at Knitting Next Door.  I just spent a couple hours sitting and knitting with other knitters.  While I was there I signed up for a Crocheted Jewelry Class.  I will learn to make jewelry with this ladder yarn.  The colors and sparkle are very eye catching.

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

This Bath is For the Birds

Tonight I spent some time playing with iPiccy which is an on-line photo editor.  You can find it at  It has lots of different effects, including frames.  It is definitely worth checking out.

Tuesday, June 5, 2012


There are a lot of cool websites that you can use to make collages or edit photos. I was playing around on to edit this picture of a lily.  You can make it look like you're artsy, even if you aren't so much.

Monday, June 4, 2012

Morning Walk

One of my goals for the summer is to get more exercise.  I started out with a 30 minute walk this morning, and it was a beautiful day.  I love this time of year with the beautiful flowers blooming, lush lawns, and manicured flower beds.  Some of my neighbors have a good sense of humor as well.

I took these photos with Instagram on my phone.

Rustic Rye Bread

Today was my first Monday of summer vacation.  I woke up around my usual time, but was able to do some writing, go for a nice walk, and spend time reading.  I also baked some rye bread today.  All in all, a great start to the summer.

A Trip to Spain

When I was in high school, my dad spent a year serving in Viet Nam.  My parents wrote long letters to each other every day.  We also recorded messages on reel to reel tapes.  It took about three weeks for these letters and packages to reach my dad on the other side of the world.

My son is doing a study abroad in Valencia, Spain this summer.  Sunday morning I was on Facebook when he instant messaged me. After we chatted a while I told him I wanted him to post some photos so I could see some of what he was seeing there in Spain.  I have never been to Europe.  Within minutes he began uploading photos.

I love the internet!  It has made the world much smaller.  So my pictures today were not taken by me.  I copied them from the photos my son posted and turned them into this collage of Spain.  Have fun, Michael!  I feel so much better now that I got to be there with you if only via photos.

Saturday, June 2, 2012

Cozy Slippers for Lisa

Wednesday was Lisa's birthday. She was lucky because this was the second time I used this Slipper Loafer pattern. That means I learned from the mistakes I made on Mom's.  Lucky for Lisa she won't have to "grow" into them.  I really loved the color and feel of the yarn.  I took the picture with Instagram on my phone.

Friday, June 1, 2012


It's hard to believe, but the 2011-2012 school year has come to an end. The classroom has been stripped of posters, bulletin boards, books, and name tags.  Summer vacation has officially begun!