A daily record of gratitude; from quilting to photography to a mix of technology, books, movies and the musings of life!

Welcome to my Blog of my daily gratitude and photo of the day!

Since January 1, 2012, my goal is to write a daily sentence or two (or paragraph or two) about gratitude of the day and to include one photo (at least) that I took that day (but will add others from time to time). It has definitely been a challenge most days throughout the past eight years, and welcomed the challenge again this year - 2019. I hope you will continue the ride with me!

Sunday, March 29, 2020

#SilverLinings - Showing Kindness in These Crazy Times...A Bottle of Red...

Moments ago, we had a knock on the front door, of course, not expecting anyone or anything. So what a great surprise to open the door, and find this; an "emergency kit" comprised of a bottle of wine and a roll of toilet paper (ala "secret sewing sister/secret santa etc.) and two balloons for the festive and much appreciated gift! The "secret gift giver" was found out as I ran out the door to give a shout of ThANKS to a truck parked near my house. Come to find out it was the great idea of my bee-mate, Debbi Carter, and her husband, Tim, (who is her Robin to her Batwoman!)

My husband, Bill, and I can't shut up about this display of community and thoughtfulness on so many levels. We are inspired to pay if forward, and invite my blogpost readers to do the same if the mood strikes! #HowCanWeHelpOthers...

When this whole Covid-19 virus started, my hope was that our world would experience more silver linings then complaints about social isolation, and this one certainly has brought hope and gratefulness beyond anything we've would have witnessed even three weeks ago.

One more item to share (I get nothing to post it btw), is the Budweiser commercial that is very inspiring as well! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3_t9niMNkdg

BSoleille! The bright side of Debbi and Tim Carter!


Saturday, March 28, 2020

Before and After - "He's Got the Whole World In His Hands!"

One thing "good" about the Covid-19 sequester is completing a house task on the to-do list, right? So when I painted those green walls in my kitchen porcelain white in early February (way before the virus was on the radar), at least for the USA, I told my husband to hold on to his opinion because there was a method to my madness and my vision for this big wall.

Years ago, when son Ryan needed Home/Hospital Teaching, we hung two maps in this same space, albeit a wee bit smaller, of the USA and a map of the world (Thank you, Nurse Anne DeLuca). Fast forward 18 or so years, and I knew I still wanted a huge wall map of the world in that large wall space. I combed the internet looking for the "perfect" one, and found it through Etsy - Academia Maps: https://www.academiamaps.com/

The maps are linen like fabric with a repositionable sticky back (peel and stick) that was easy enough to install with three sets of hands, especially with a larger size map. I am thrilled with the final result and grateful to Academia Maps for their quality maps and their awesome customer service.

Cheers to our world, hopefully a safer and healthier one in the months ahead for all seven billion of us, and like the song says: "He's Got the Whole World in His Hands."


Painting Party of One

The map came in three sections

Friday, March 27, 2020

The Trees of Spring

The Cherry Blossoms on the Mall in Washington DC is breathtaking beyond words...and millions of photos are taken each year to share in their exquisite beauty. Unfortunately for this year, if one did not live in DC at their peak (last weekend), it was a tough go to get into the city (on lockdown mostly) to view those yearly and magical blossoms.

Instead, we've had to "settle" on our own neighborhood, where there has been a superabundance of flowering pink trees that could "rival" those blossoms to our West. And since there are so many varieties, those fragrant pink flowering buds have been taking turns showing off their stuff, much to everyone's delight in these parts.

BSoleille! The bright side of pink blossoms all over town.


Thursday, March 26, 2020

Happy Birthday Maryland - 386 Years Old!

Though my entire immediate family was born in Ohio, and still consider ourselves "native buckeyes," living in the state of Maryland for close to 24 years now has been a true pleasure. I am thankful to be a "adopted" by this "Old Line State," and enjoy its amenities immensely. Living close to Washington DC, Baltimore and Annapolis (and the Chesapeake Bay), has through the years, afforded my family and guests that have visited us a plethora of interesting things to get lost in. From the beaches in Ocean City on the Eastern Shore, to the Appalachian Trail and Deep Creek in the mountains of the West, this Freestate has got it all!

So it behooves me to salute the State of Maryland on its 386th Birthday, hope for safety of all Marylanders (and the rest of the country and world), and trustfully know that we all will get back to our lives, albeit it will be a bit different I suspect (at least at first.)

BSolielle! The bright side of Maryland Crabs on a hot summer day with a cold beer and lots of Old Bay!


Photos from the grocery chain store Wegman's, and their Maryland display...


Tuesday, March 24, 2020

Jenga Anyone? Quilter's Scrap Style

Sew... I've worked over 40 hours in culling my 18+ years of a "scrap pile" of quilting fabrics and beyond. This project has required me to stand, either at my ironing board wrestling with all the wrinkled fabric that was squeezed into bags, boxes and other vessels to "contain" them all, or standing at my dining room table where my cutting mat lives. It's been a great exercise in organizing stuff that I told myself I would get to it "some day." I can thankfully say that this week has been that "some day."

Kudos to several members of my guild who graciously shared their thoughts on how they organize their scraps (by sizes, colors, types of fabrics etc.) that I truly appreciated. However, bee-mates, Mary Nielsen and Carrie Casto, have inspired me to stay the course and keep wrangling through my stash of scraps. It was great to stay the course, because as I found out, it has been way more tedious than I thought (and probably why I put it off for soooo long.)

BSoleille! The bright side of safely saying that I'm all scraped out!


Photos below indicate my piles, including the "Jenga" pile of 2.5" squares, and then how neat everything is now. Whew! Back to NeedleOnFull Tshirt Quilts and Long-Arm Quilting!

Sunday, March 22, 2020

Birthday Girl - "The Best Daughter" is 28!

Funny thing in childbirth, you just can't wait to see that baby when it's first born. The glow of that moment is something most women never forget, including me. So when that baby turns 28, like today, there was no way I couldn't even see down that proverbial road, and who knows, maybe that's a good thing. We were "all worried" about going home and getting through that first week, ahem.

With all the craziness of shutting down the whole world, practically, "The Best Daughter" was lamenting that her birthday will be canceled, like everything else around us, and that she could stay 27. I am happy to report that is, of course, not the case and she claims she had a great day turning 28 and will stay put in her new number for another spin around the sun.

BSoleille! The bright side of 28 is great!


Saturday, March 21, 2020

It's National Quilting Day for 2020!

It's National Quilting Day, and we quilters should be celebrating this great "holiday" for those with lodes of patience to start and finish a quilt...any quilt! I think we are, but not at a show (bummer!), or a shop, or gathering with friends who sew. But due to technology, I am super thankful that my bee was able to "celebrate" our day by using the app: Zoom. It's free for 40 minutes of a "meeting" or meet up, and because we wanted to share, we did two 40 minute-ers (or close to it). Remember, there were five or six of us on the video chat, which gives everyone a chance to talk and share without worry. You can check it out here: https://zoom.us/

Once my chats were completed (another one with my SA group late in the afternoon), I needed to make only ONE block to finish this quilt (started in 2017) entitled: Scrap Soup with 2.5" Strips. I wanted to finish this scrap quilt due to the saying, especially in these trying times, "when life gives you scraps, make a quilt." I can't believe I let two years go by without making one dang block to finish it, but no longer, it's done!

BSoleille! The bright side of celebrating National Quilting Day however we can.


Photos below of the Scrap Soup Quilt and my Just Sew Bee (members now hail from Arizona, Florida, and Maryland).

Deb Hoppe, me, Carrie Casto, Mary Nielsen and Susie Stevenson (Karen Todd was on but her phone was dying, and Deb Carter had audio difficulties), This was our first trial with  Zoom, and I believe more successful than not. Zoom is trending all over the USA and beyond for collaborative meetings and meet-ups!