Quiet Thoughts

"If we earnestly appeal to God, He takes us as we are and makes us more than we ever imagined."
San Diego, California LDS Temple

"All I have seen teaches me to trust the Creator for all I have not seen."
Ralph Waldo Emerson 
Lover's Lane at Green Gables Prince Edward Island 
Canyon Lands Utah

Beaver Dam, Cache Co. Utah
"If you have good thoughts, they will shine out of your face like sunbeams and you will always look lovely."
Dr. Seuss


A Little Heads Up on Christmas Shopping

Time to grab my purse and do a little window shopping on Main Street to get inspired for the Christmas season.  Why do I prefer walking in a store to browsing online?  All my senses are involved.  First of all these little shops always smell delicious with the scent of candles, perfum and sachets.
Secondly, entering the shop is an instant feast for the eyes.  Colors and textures jump out.  I want to touchy feelly everything.  So much eye candy I don't know where to begin.  But begin I must.
It actually takes quite awhile to go through this shop called  'Madame L'Amour' on Bountiful's Main St.  You just don't want to miss anything. The furniture is painted so beautifully in the softest of colors, charming displays, the chandeliers are romantic and there's always that one of a kind item that is certainly a must have.
Thirdly why I go out of my way to find unique shops is because at Christmas time so many unusual and glitzy things show up.  You think you have everything you need and want and then there it is, some cute little thing you've never seen before.  After a couple of hours of window shopping I hurry home and write my letter to Santa!  Plus my head is full of ideas for those on my Christmas list.  It really is a sensory experience unlike sitting at the computer scrolling up and down a screen. 


Welcome To My Playroom

When work is play.  It's that time of year when projects have deadlines.   Ideas must now manifest themselves in fabric or paper.  Holiday boutiques and retail shops must have the goods for their customers to indulge in the holiday spirit of gift giving.  While I'm working in my studio the piles around me get higher and higher.  In fact, scissors and the seam rippers are always getting lost in the chaos. Buttons, lace, ribbon and bobbins in a array of colors cover the tables.
Here's a sneek peek of some of the things I have been working on. 
I taught a craft class at our Relief super Saturday.  The ladies were pleased with their Merry Christmas wall hangings made from wood and scrapbook paper.
Embellishing is the name of the game.  Giving some pizzazz with ruffle and button to suede gloves.
Mr. Doggy is about 16" high and such a cutie.  I'm taking custom orders so that a child can have a dog in their favorite color with boy or girl prints.  One of the dogs is green and brown with trucks, ABC's and dots.

An updated look for the forever favorite, an embroidered sampler.  A great accent piece in a room.
Over the weekend with all the projects finished, for now, I began the clean studio clean up.  Fabrics  were folded up and put into a big basket, if the pieces were larger than 12", otherwise scraps were put into hatboxes. Threads back on the board, ribbons corralled in hanging baskets.  There were tons of straight pins on the floor and guess what I found?  Under the piles I found four pairs of scissors and three seam rippers.  I always believe messes cause expense because you can't find what you need.  I had actually bought another seam reaper because I couldn't find my other three!  What can I say.  I'm like a mad scientist when I'm in the middle of a project.
Well it's all cleaned up for now.  I'll give it a rest for a few days before I start again.  Any good ideas for keeping your essentials handy while you're sewing? I'm open to suggestions.
                                                               Have a great day


Hot as a Firecracker...Palm Springs

The last part of August we reserved a two room suite in Palm Springs.  Boy was it hot!  110 degrees.  Lacey and the boys drove over from Los Angeles for a couple of days to play with us.  During the day we made the rounds of the resorts six pools. One of them was a water park which Ty, Emmett and Paden loved.  A splash pad, slides, mini kids pool and a huge pool kept us cool for hours.  Love the canopies with the refreshing mist.

I even had a go on the slide and soaked everyone when I hit the water. Lacey waiting for Paden to make a splash.
Later in the afternoon we piled into the Mustang and drove to historic Palm Springs for ice cream and shopping.   There's no doubt these little boys love their 'mama bear'.  We love Mr. T taking us to fun places.

The restaurant behind is Ruby's Diner.  We love the nostalgic atmosphere.  They have the best hamburgers and shakes.  Although as I recall someone ordered pancakes and loved them.

The day the kids left Mr. T took them miniature golfing.  It was reported by Mr. T that Ty and Emmett have such a powerful swing they are ready for the big course.  Maybe next year.  Too soon they were headed home to start football practice and make preparations for the new school year.  Emmett starts kindergarten this year.


Zion or Bust

We made our yearly trek to Zions Canyon for the 57th Durfey Reunion on the weekend of July 4.  We always look forward to meeting with cousins who come from all over the country.  We are never disappointed with the fun we have together.  Surrounded by the amazing stone cliffs and red rock mountains that never change.  It's like coming home to something very familiar and safe.  We have memories as children swimming the river, hiking the trails, discovering our own trails.  Every night we gather to sing, go on a bear hunt, entertain with impromptu skits and remember our loved ones who have passed on. Grandpa Durfey and his six daughters and sons-in-law started the reunion 57 years ago.  I think one of the reasons for its success is that we always meet at Zions.  We have watched many changes over the years and in some ways feel a bit put out that it has become so crowded with tourists.  Years ago we ran the trails pretty much by ourselves, jump on the swinging bridge, have firesides that the Park Rangers would also enjoy.  Many adventures and happy memories in our Zions. We are grateful for this family legacy.
The Springdale parade has become a tradition.  All the little ones (4th and 5th generation) ride on the float.  We all take part in decorating the trailer and scramble to gt everyone in their place by 9 am.  The kids throw out candy and drench the the parade-goers sitting along the sidewalk with squirt guns. Some little ones are still in training as they would rather eat the candy than  throw it out in the street.

This year those who were up for it went on a 12 mile bike ride. The starting point was at Zion look-out a couple of miles below the Kolob reservoir.  Bikes were taken up in trucks.   

  We're above the sheer cliff  of the the canyon.  The Great White Throne and below the West Rim Trail.  One of the many trails we hiked as kids.
Ready, Set, Go.   All the cousins, mostly bikers, some drivers.

In the evening we gather for dinner, singing and skits. Prop bags are awaiting crazy skits.  Everyone does an amazing job coming up with a hilarious story off the top of their head.
Lacey in the 'Perils of Pauline'
Another fun year and another generation loving it.  Our home by the river.


Look For The Signs

I get a kick out of the signs in ghost towns and old buildings from the past.  Sign boards seemed to be a way to make a statement, give directions, advertise or in general say whatever it was they wanted to say.  Maybe like todays bumper sticker. Some boards have interesting detail.  Beautiful lettering, pretty colors and curves and swirls.  Others were short and sweet.  Paint a board and nail it up.   These gems were found at an abandoned copper mine.  A ghost town in Arizona which at one time had a population of thousands and now just a hundred or so. 

  I especially like "Do not throw old clothes or shoes out of the windows".    What window?


Salton Sea and Date Palms

Not far from the California Mexico border is the Salton Sea.  I don't know if it was a 'hot  spot' at one time or some developers had high hopes of it becoming one.  There are empty building lots.  The weathered and faded For Sale signs are stretched across the desert sand.  A shell of a tourist shop advertising water sports and a deserted beach. 
Driving down the road before we reached the Salton Sea were rows and rows of date palms. The heavy bunches of dates are bagged, dry on the tree and then harvested.  I must admit I had never seen a date palm with dates on it.  Some things you just think come from a store, right?  I was reminded of our young daughter years ago who was horrified to find out milk came from a cow!  When we asked her where she thought milk came from she said, 'The store".


Before We Forget

With the gusting wind spinning gold and red leaves through the air it is a sure sign that fall is on its way.  Before we are head over heels in holiday enthusiasm I want to take a minute to recap our summer activities.   In "Happy Valley" the summer days are long.  The sun doesn't completely set until after 10.  So as long as the sun is up we're still going.  Unlike this week with the time change it starts to feel like bedtime around 4.  
We saw 'AMERICA' at Draper Days.  Situated on the brow of the hill among hundreds of blankets and chairs we had plenty of homemade entertainment before the concert started.
Brynn  inspires us with her impromptu ballet and gymnastic stunts.

Before long Sadie was in on the action strutting her stuff.  She had quite the moves and wanted to make sure we noticed her spiffy duck tape bandages. 

Lucy was completely happy getting plenty of hugs from granpa.  Next concert Imagine Dragons.


Winter Retreat vs Motorhome

Mr. T and I have a playful discussion of which is the better of the two, a winter retreat or a 
home on wheels.  Mr. T loves a road trip which is why we luckily travel a lot to interesting places around the country.  In his dreams he sees us rolling down the road in a primo motorhome with all the bells and whistles.  Now if we were going to get a home on wheels I think a camper would be charming or a pink Shasta trailer to go 'glamping'.  He's not crazy about this idea.

My idea of a winter retreat away from the cold and snow would look something like this.  The closets would be full of clothes (so I wouldn't have to pack a bag), books would fill the shelves, scrumptious linens on comfortable beds and room to roam.
Here's a home tour of some places we saw in St. George, Utah.  I might have bought one on the spot if Mr. T and I weren't having this on-going conversation.  Love the free floating shelf underneath the TV.

 There are a lot of built in desks and shelves which make the rooms stream lined and functional.  Clever inexpensive art.  Framed scrapbook paper.

Light and airy yet colorful and inviting.
Mirrors are a great for adding light and expanding space.
An adorable and comfortable Casita off the courtyard.  Perfect for visiting guests.

Love the red accent wall against the bright white shelves.

 Here is my cute Mr. T with this gem of a motor home we saw at Universal Studios in Florida.
 It's a hard choice don't you think?  Which would you  prefer?  Have you seen the movie "RV"?  It's a laugh and a half!

                                                  Joining Amaze Me Monday this week

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