Friday, July 31, 2009

"The pinkest juice in the world"

We got out of town pretty late on Wednesday because Matthew had to get some things done on the farm, and remembered on the way there that we planned the trip that way, leaving late on Wednesday, so that Matthew could get some work done in the morning. I guess that was smart.

We took an alternate route because there was something enormous on the highway just outside of Scott City and there was no way around it.

We stopped in Leoti for a quick potty and drink stop, and found Belly Washers. 99 cents, and Anna was delighted. It's the only thing she drank out of at the cabin, and it's still a hit at home.

We got to the airport in time-and found that flying out at night is much more peaceful in the Denver airport.

Anna finally fell asleep at the very end of the flight, and then we took a shuttle to a hotel and spent the night in Portland, where Anna happily believed that two chairs pulled together and covered with an extra blanket was "a special bed just for her". Yippee! (she kicks)

A good first day of traveling.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

First, the craft

I was packing for both trips at once, for Oregon and for the Cabin, and I was trying to finish my big project for Linguistics, and I was trying to get in a swim everyday, so there was lots to do.

And then I thought: "I need a tiny notebook to carry in my purse when we're traveling. I should make one." I put it on the list, while telling myself that it had to come LAST, after all of the important work, like packing clothes and identification.

I didn't hold out that long, but it really only took about 7 minutes. (more than 5, less than 10)

Two coasters that I decided to put in the craft pile, some scraps of construction paper, and the lovely bind-it-all = a perfect notebook.
I love this craft tool.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Suitcase transformation

Ooh, I want to do this.

(pic from Bitter Betty Blogs)

I'm always tempted to buy the cute old suitcases, but really, what am I going to do with old suitcases?

Now I have something!

I could make one for my Bind-it-all and supplies.

And one for thread crochet and patterns.

And one for trims.

And one for scrapbooking stuff.

And one for wrapping paper-y items.

And wouldn't they be cute up on a shelf, neatly labeled? Or hung from the wall on giant hooks, if I had enough room? Or lined up along the bottom of a closet?


Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Diary of a Crafty Chica

One of the superstars in the crafty world, Kathy Cano-Murillo uses lots of glitter and sparkles. Lots.

My Spanish-teacher/secret latina heart loves all of the skulls and Frida and papel picado and shrines.

Fun projects and contests and giveaways too!

(pic from The Crafty Chica)

Monday, July 27, 2009

Craft Sanity

My favorite crafty podcast, she interviews crafters and creative people and is my kind of girl. The kind of girl who totally gets having a "craft blender".

(should be back with regular posts tomorrow!)

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Anna Maria Horner

A designer of gorgeous fabrics and taker of beautiful pictures and enjoyer of life. Some easy projects, some more complicated quilt patterns, all pretty.

(pic from Anna Maria Horner)

Saturday, July 25, 2009

The Crafty Crow

An amazing collection of fun for kids. Books, games, crafts, activities, on and on and on.

Friday, July 24, 2009

Amy Quarry

She's been taking a break, but I think she's back now. She makes great little girl things and likes to reuse and recycle. She also does a great job pointing out lovely things on Etsy.

(pic from Amy Quarry)

Thursday, July 23, 2009


I love this one, though I quit following it when I tried to cut back during Lent. Everytime I visit it I want to spend hours there. It's so pretty. Crafts, lots of embroidery, cute thrift store finds, and neat photography of old toys and books. And she's from Wichita!

(pic from doe-c-doe)

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Darling Petunia

I've been following her lately, hoping the sewing bravery will rub off on me, I guess. She makes lots of clothes, and takes lovely pictures. Every couple of weeks, she reviews bunches of books, and I enjoy that too. Ah, for more time...

(pic from Darling Petunia)

Tuesday, July 21, 2009


One of my favorites, they troll hundreds of craft blogs and pull out interesting projects and art and tutorials and exhibitions and events. It used to be my favorite magazine, but now they're just online. Stupid "recession".

(pic from Craft)

Monday, July 20, 2009

the purl bee

Lots of knitting here, but also some crochet and some patchwork and quilting and sewing. Beautiful.

(pic from the purl bee)

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Soule Mama

Beautiful pictures, peaceful writing. This one is all about home and family and making pretty things and appreciating life. She reminds me of Megan.

(pic from Soule Mama)

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Retro Mama

Oh, so pretty. Color and color and color. More Sewing.

(pic from Retro Mama)

Friday, July 17, 2009

Sew, Mama, Sew!

Sewing, and fabrics, and tutorials, and inspiration and projects... wonderful and lovely.

(pic from Sew, Mama, Sew!)

Thursday, July 16, 2009


I'm in Oregon today!

First we're going to Oregon to see Jeanette and Eric and JEO, and then we're leaving Anna with them for a couple of days for some 10th Anniversary fun. (No plans, my favorite!)

Then we're going straight from the airport to the cabin, for Alsop family fun. Poor Matthew will probably not get to have much cabin time-unless you pray for rain!

While I'm gone, I don't want to leave you La Vida Betsy-less, but I have all of this travelling to get ready for, so I'm going to leave you with 12 days of cool craft blogs to peruse (in no particular order of favorite-ness).

Have fun!

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Summer Sonnet (2)

It was bugging me, so when I finished the paper I took a few minutes and tried to make it rhyme. It was not easy, and I think I may like it even less (how possible?) but here is a sonnet more along the lines of what Shakespeare intended.

Summer Sonnet

To teenagers I owe all my small joys.
Who preen, and prance, and flirt, and flaunt, and guard
These waters teeming, sunkissed girls and boys.
Bronze kids who tan and sunscreen disregard.
Or taking orders, shaving ice to snow.
They’re counting, pouring; bored and boring days.
When we approach, they glance at us and know;
It’s always grape, as long as summer stays.
They tend to speak of who called whom and why.
They know what matters most and it’s not you.
They offer disdain with a rolling eye.
They gather, loud and silly, much ado.
But were they not around to guard and shave
I might be tempted too, to misbehave.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Summer Sonnet

For the summer reading program we had to write a poem. Here's mine.

Sonnet of Summer

I owe all my small joys to teenagers.
Preening, prancing, flirting, flaunting, guarding
These waters teeming full of kids and sun.
Taking orders, shaving ice and pouring
Flavor, grape! On my sno cone, cold and sweet.
Their lives are wrapped up in themselves and they
Do not realize their power for good.
For my small days are made or ruined by
The availability of water
To wash away the heartache of these days.
The heat can be oppressive, but the cool
Of water, the giggle of my Anna,
The sweet refreshment of my standard grape
Reclaim my days, reclaim my summer fun.

(Except it's not really a sonnet because I didn't make it rhyme at all. Maybe if I keep working on it I can get there.)

Monday, July 13, 2009


Found this yesterday while browsing through blogs. Made me laugh, made me cry. Anna and I both clapped at the end. Enjoy!

Sunday, July 12, 2009


Last week I finally finished my Ruffle Top.

I like it.

It was more complicated than I thought it would be, but that might have been because we were trying to make all three at once. I enjoyed learning about how a shirt is put together, shaping, etc., and I'm not so daunted by pleating anymore.
I wasn't sure about putting on the pockets, but I love them, I'm glad I did.

I do need Anna to get taller so she can take pictures of me from up high. Everyone looks better when you take the pictures down rather than up.

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Peach Drop Cookies

Fresh Peach Drop Cookies

These poor little cookies are much maligned in the reviews on Martha's website, but I like them.

It's better if you think of them as mini-cobblers, because they're not crispy like a cookie. They're much more cake-y.

But tasty!
I blanched the peaches so I could peel them easily. That was fun, it felt chef-y.

Then, of course, I did several random things to the recipe. I didn't have any peach jam, and I considered using strawberry or blueberry, but in the end just decided to put in a little extra sugar and peach juice. So my dough was pretty runny.

Anna enjoyed it though.Then I made my dropped blobs too big, which I tend to do when I'm in a hurry. Why don't I look at the clock BEFORE starting a random batch of cookies?

During baking Anna waited patiently in the tasting chair. Here she's pretending to be a cookie monster. Baked! I like them, even if they are a bit strange.

Friday, July 10, 2009


Happy Anniversary to us!

Thursday, July 09, 2009

More Auction

The other fantastic thing I got at the school auction was a little kitchen!

I've wanted one of these since Day Care. When we were shopping for a kitchen for Anna, I looked longingly at the wooden ones, but they are SO expensive. (Refrigerator alone!)

This kitchen has seen some use, but still has loads of fun it it for Anna.

We tried to hide it, but she sniffed it out.

Yay auctions!

Wednesday, July 08, 2009

Wheat Harvest 2009

We're all done!!!

We had some fun helpers this year.

Levi came and worked and played with Anna, reminding all of us how much we love him. Jenny, can we keep him?
Father Wesley spent one of his days off in the field, hopefully learning how to run everything, just in case Levi doesn't come back. :)

Anna rode along as the blue truck "went to the doctor for a checkup" i.e.-to the weigh station.

For me, harvest is sack lunches and Gatorade. I think I made around 100 lunches, I'll have to keep track next year.

I did keep track of Gatorade-16 gallons. Made from scratch, it costs around 20 cents per quart. If I bought it at Dillons, it would be $1.00 per quart. So my harvest paycheck should be around $51.20, just a few extra bushels of wheat.

Gatorade recipe:

1 Kool-aid packet
1/2 c. sugar (then a little extra-tablespoonish)
3/8 tsp salt
2 T. lemon juice
2 quarts water.

Tuesday, July 07, 2009

The Roaches

We were so glad that Keenan and Sara came by to visit on their way to Denver last weekend. It was a treat to see them again. And fun to take pictures of their cute kids.

Anna and Keira had fun scooting around together.

Anna and Ari played with the new blocks.

Keenan and Matthew even got time for a little visit, due to a nice heavy dew on Saturday morning.

But the highlight had to be Ari getting to help with harvest, and then telling us about it. Over and over and over and over...

Monday, July 06, 2009

Sunday, July 05, 2009

Saturday, July 04, 2009

Friday, July 03, 2009

Ruffle Tops

I had the great, fantastic, wonderful idea that when we visited Susan, we would all make Ruffle Tops! And Susan could learn how to use her machine! And we would have matching shirts! Crafting together would be fun and easy!

As usual, I totally underestimated the time required and the level of difficulty. I felt bad about that, but Susan pointed out that if I had accurately estimated either of those things, I wouldn't be Betsy.

We went to Joann's and picked out fabrics. I thought that part was super fun, but it stressed Abby out.

Then we went to Target to get an iron, because Susan didn't have one. (I know!)

Then we went back to the house and got started cutting. It took a long time to cut out the pieces for three shirts. I, of course, was completely baffled when I noticed what time it was. 11:00? Isn't it 8:00? Sweet Anna watched Dora and ate pizza with us way past her bedtime.

The next day after church we got down to sewing. Doesn't that look like fun?

Steven was home and he and Anna had a good time together.

Here are three girls with mostly finished ruffle tops. We still need to hem them, but it was 6:30, and time to head for home.

I think Susan did get the hang of her machine, and we did make cute shirts, and we did have fun (ish?), but I should have chosen a simpler project to start. Like this, or this, or maybe this? So many possibilities...

Thursday, July 02, 2009

Block City

We went to an auction a couple of weeks ago, where they were selling some things from the school district. My dad spotted a box of blocks that I had missed, and scooted me outside just in time.

It might be the greatest thing I've ever gotten at an auction.

Anna's been having a great time. This is "Applelot" It doesn't even make a dent in the blocks in the box.

Yay Auctions!

Wednesday, July 01, 2009

Sewing Machine Giveaway!

Sew, Mama, Sew is giving away a Sewing Machine!

You just take this little survey here.

Open until July 2~