Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Birthday Celebration

Monday was spent preparing for a birthday dinner celebration for one of the quilters/crafters in our group.  We meet every Monday evening to sew and quilt, craft, iron, discuss issues, and solve the world's problems (if only someone else would listen, of course!)  The group began when we met in the basement of a small church for a Bible study a few years ago.  There was an instant connection and great bond of love formed, which was strengthened significantly with the discovery we enjoyed quilting.  Monday night sewing was born!  The group has expanded, blessing in ways beyond measure.

Anyway, for the blogging purposes I shall name them;  Miss Constantly Joyous is always finding good, loves and accepts everyone, and has a laugh that is infectious; Miss Wonderfully Kind consistently gives to others and discovers a myriad of ways to exhibit kindness, contributing endless hours to her church and to those in need around her; Lovely Miss Witty continues to amaze us with her witty way of seeing situations and her extraordinary creative style, beautiful, young and very caring; and Miss Exact Detail composes quilts with every single square or triangle or corner meeting EXACTLY perfectly with her amazing skill and detail-oriented mind.  A beautiful mix of talents, personalities and well, just delightful women.  I am abundantly blessed to be loved by and to love them in return.

We celebrated Miss Constantly Joyous' September birthday last night (a few weeks late).  Delicious dishes were prepared and lugged in the door to the kitchen.  Lovely Miss Witty stopped on her way to work Monday morning to drop off the chicken with instructions on temperature and time for it to be popped into the oven, along with some homemade bread to be warmed.  As always, she looked ravishing in a burnt orange silky jacket and vivid scarf in complementing colors stylishly draped around her neck, hair shining - and all so early in the morning.  Miss Wonderfully Kind brought a 'to die for' batch of cupcakes concocted with layers of cookie dough, candy, and brownie mix - oh my - way too good!  Miss Exact Detail brought a crock pot slowly warming a pumpkin pie pudding - topped with whipped cream it was a perfect combination with the cupcake.  My contribution was rice and garden salad.

Below is a photo (not very good) attempt of showing you the table (which I dragged from the kitchen into the living room in front of the fireplace) set for dinner with the fire glowing in the background.  Miss Wonderfully Kind not only helped get the fire going, but also arrived early enough to run out beforehand to get fire starters when we were meeting obstacles in the fire lighting department!!!!  As a former Girl Scout, I just never mastered the fire starting bit!  But we did enjoy the simmering, popping, murmuring background with the soft light and warmth of the fire.  Sharing our lives, laughing together, savoring good food and local wine or herbal tea, feeling the warmth of the nearby fire, basking in love .... what an evening.

Oh, and here is a photo of some of the produce picked from the garden to make the salad for Miss Constantly Joyous' party.  Isn't God good?  Such bounty!

When I awoke Monday after the lovely Sunday rain, low and behold these toad stool type growths had risen in the mulch of the garden.  Overnight!  What interesting beings!  I could almost imagine little people resting beneath them in the shade, tiny little girls dressed in cute little dresses and Mary Jane shoes, with little ribbons in their hair ... and little tiny boy people with brown hair parted on the side, and little blue britches ... well, anyway, they were quite beautiful toad stools.  I wanted you to see the detail on the edges - the utterly stunning symmetry - one almost looked like a cheese cake in the garden!!!!  How can anyone NOT believe in God when there are toad stools of this beauty overnight????

Lastly, here are two more photos;  One of the Zinnias picked for the party, now standing straight and tall on the kitchen island to enjoy for the day!  And one of a quilt finished last year - all in pastels, hand stitched.  In my mind (old-fashioned, yes) a quilt should be hand quilted.  It takes me tons longer to finish a quilt than it does my friends, who make GORGEOUS quilted items which they have machine stitched by a machine called a long arm machine.  They are lovely, eye-catching, even breath taking; but to old-fashioned me, a quilt is something carefully, slowly, hand quilted.  They probably finish five or ten quilts to my one.  Oh well, I will be sharing photos of those in the future.

Tomorrow I will share photos and thoughts of the garden before Jack Frost decides it is time to appear!

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