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January 23, 2004 7:30 pm CDT

Ok Ok I got off my duff & decided I'd dust off this journal and type a little what not! Don't faint Cousin Amy & Aunt Julie! Heeee ;)

Well let's see, I've been doing a whole lot of this & that and it doesn't look like I have anything accomplished what so ever. I guess all in all that's pretty normal eh? I haven't soaped in about 2 months & still haven't sent the christmas package to my sister in-law. The rate I'm going it will be Christmas in July!

The kids are growing like weeds. Brett's in 8th grade and busy as a beaver with school, band & sports. He's started sewing on the machine in Home Ec and he's into that. Today he said they sewed on paper with lines without thread. From the sounds of it he has his momma's lead foot. I hope the poor sewing machine survives!!! Jacob's hanging in there in school. He & Austin don't have the best grades but I have a feeling they inherit that from me. I detested book work - especially math - so I think they inherited my procrastination gene and we all know I'm the Queen of procrastination. Jacob plays the trombone pretty well but trying to get him to practice is like pulling teeth. Austin isn't doing band yet but will next year and it sounds like his instrument will be the drums.

Jacob & Austin have started learning how to feed the calves & cows when Brett has to go play in the band at ball games. They do pretty well except Austin has a bit of trouble making the wide turn into the Alfalfa field. One night it dawned on me that it was high time Austin learned since Brett was doing those chores at his age - of course me not wanting to fill in for Brett had nothing to with it! In hindsight I think the jokes on me though. Next year Brett will be gone a lot for ball games, Jacob will have to go to the home games to play in the band and the rest of us will have to go to the games to watch Brett. Of course that means chores will have to be done earlier so we can all go to the games....meaning ole ma's home so she'll have to do them grrrrrrrr. Aint that the way it goes? Ya get those kids raised up to where they can work & they're gone! Guess lil miss & I will have to learn to work together. That's scary cuz she apparently didn't get the memo that said I was the boss not her LOL!

Frenchie's still busy with John Deere & the ranch. He & one of the parts guys won a trip to Hawaii through John Deere's awards program. We were kind of bummed there for awhile because it didn't look like they were going to let them cash the trip in for merchandise like they had in the past. There's no way either of the guys could take the trip. In the end they reduced the amount of the prize and are going to let them have gift certificates to get merchandise instead. Last night he sat down and figured up how much seed he'd need for planting. I guess it's getting about that time again. I'm not sure I'm going to even try to raise beans this year. The last two years they've been a bust & this morning I heard on the radio that the grasshoppers are going to be abundant again.

I've been working on trying to come up with some original quilt tops. I don't know how much I like them. I'm trying to break out of traditional quilt mode but I keep going back to basic blocks. I really like Caryl Bryer Fallert's art quilts. I haven't quite figured out how they come together like that. She does some applique with string piecing on full sized patterns plus she dyes her own fabric. Awesome work and it's a lot of hard work. I made a quilt top for a silent auction to help raise money for Ballfield Lights. It actually did better than I hoped thanks to a little angel floating around out there ;0). It sold for $150.00 then the people who won it donated it back to the group doing the fund raising. Mom read about it in the paper and then I got a letter from the organization saying it will be raffled off again sometime in the future to hopefully raise more money for the lights. I thought that was pretty cool. The auction & soup supper did pretty well. The silent auction raised $4,658 and the soup supper another $655. To date they have raised 9,500 and they need $17,000 for the new lighting system.

I'm working on a new design and am a bit frustrated with it. I actually came up with it trying to draw an isometric graph lol. I couldn't get it to come out right, got frustrated and just started slopping diagonal lines down. Then I decided it look kind of cool so I colored the sections and it took off from there. I did four blocks but then the other 12 I'm working on now are different. Since they are funky shapes I printed off foundation paper to paper piece it. Well like a numpty I forgot I mirrored some blocks & flipped others in my computer program so that means my blocks are different. ARG! Oh well, it will be interesting to see what kind of layout I end up with! I'll put a picture of the block I'm working on up in the Gallery section. Don't know what I'm going to call it yet guess I'll wait until I get all the blocks put together.

Whew! Well I'm all typed out so I guess I'll end for now. I'll try not to wait another 7 months before I update.