Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Adoption Necklace

Tuesday night I went to Diva Night at Loralei's in Sevierville. It is the second one I have been to and it was a chance to see her new store. It was so nice. I loved the openness of it and the decor and it just seemed so much more spacious! After looking around at everything I found a cute ballet ornament for Sophie's Christmas tree. It was so pretty I just had to get it for her. I was pretty much done shopping and had made my way to the front of the store when I spotted a section of jewelry I had missed. When I looked closer I found a little basket with charms in it that had a sign that said adoption jewelry. I had to know what it was all about.
A picture of the adoption charm that caught my eye. The heart represents the love we have for each other and our child to be. The wings represent God and his Angels that guide us through the journey.
"Every good and perfect gift is from God above." James 1:17

I was curious because I have a very good friend who is trying very hard to adopt her first child. I have to tell you that over the past two years I have had three couples on my heart that I prayed for daily that their child would come. My heart will be forever attached to those babies. Two of those couples, despite challenges, have had their babies. They are blessings sent from God. I feel like I have one more baby that I am waiting for. I have never stopped praying for my friends baby to be sent to her. It seems strange but I have felt like my job isn't done. I started looking several months ago for a piece of jewelry that would be a symbol for her journey through the adoption process.  Angie Long is the sweet person who told me what the charm represented. After hearing her story I knew I had to get it for my friend.

I took the adoption charm and picked two other charms from Bev Jones of Two Coyotes Studio for Bev to make a necklace. The letter J with the word Journey to represent the journey to find her baby.

The charm with the letter J and the word Journey

 The crystal charm to represents clarity.... keeping focused on the joy at the end of the journey. When we look back we will realize that it was just the beginning. It turned out beautiful!

When I gave the necklace to my friend I asked if I could share her story on my blog because I know that there is one thing that the adoption agencies say over and over and it is "Get the word out".... So I don't know how many people will read this but I ask that you share her story with those around you. I know that this prayer will be answered. I just think the necklace is a "God Thing".... If you do nothing else just pray!

So here is my friend. Karen Ogle. She is a beautiful person and she will be a wonderful mother! Read her story and get to know and love her as I do! Maybe you will be the one who helps her fulfill her dreams of being a mother!

My beautiful friend Karen in the orange Vols shirt

 From Karen:

Dear Readers,
Thank you for taking the time to hear our story.  Our names are Teddy and Karen Ogle.  We have been married for four years and Teddy has two children ages thirteen and ten from a previous marriage.  Since before we married we knew that we wanted to have a child together, and after two years of lost pregnancies and unsuccessful fertility treatments we have learned that God has chosen a different plan for us. 

A little about us:
We were set up on a blind date by mutual friends and we have been together ever since. 

 We are best friends who love relaxing and spending time together and with Teddy’s children.  We love sports and going to sporting events, and traveling.  Teddy is a construction supervisor for a large company.  I am a first grade teacher and I love being around the students at school and seeing how much they grow every year.  Teddy enjoys working outside and doing yard work.  I enjoy working in the house and reading when time allows.  We love family game night were we play video games or board games as a family.  The kids are very excited about having a little brother or sister.  

Teddy is such a good dad!

We just finished building our dream home two years ago.  It is a home that we pray will soon hear the sound of a babies laughter.  We have a one acre and a half lot that backs up to a small farm.  It is very much like living in the country, but you can get to the town in a matter of minutes.

Both of our families live in the area and are very excited about having another grandchild to spoil.  We spend a great amount of time with our families and have a wonderful support system.  We will raise the child in a loving home that is God and family centered.  We attend the church that I was raised in and will provide a loving stable church family for our child.

We love our time with our family. Looking forward to the day when our family picture is complete.

We pray that someone will hear our story and that our prayers of a baby will soon be answered. If you know a birth mother who is considering the adoption process please share our story and this web site with them.  If they would like to see our profile book you can contact Pam Frye at Harmony Adoptions, 865-982-5225, or for more information. Thank you for reading our story. God bless.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012


So I didn't get to go to my favorite vacation spot this summer. If you know anything about me you know I left part of my heart in Charleston on my honeymoon seven years ago. It is my dream to someday have a small home there. Hey a girl can dream right? Anyways, instead of going on vacation...and by vacation I mean overnight trip, Adam, Sophie and I, stayed close to home and had all the local tourist fun we could have. We did Splash Country, Dollywood, and the mountains. We have had a good time and I think Sophie has had a blast. She has asked about the beach though. She is like her momma in a few ways. I think she left a little piece of her heart there too!

Adam and I went to Asheville for our get away. We left early fueled by a iced coffee and arrived looking for REI around 11. We drove around forever because we left the GPS but we finally found it. If you like to bike, hike, or camp its a pretty cool place. I went to an Olive Oil and Vinegar store and spent all of my birthday money Adam gave me and a little more. There was an awesome toy store and more all in that part of Asheville. The houses there were to die for. I wish I had taken a picture but I think that might have got me in trouble.

After we left that part of town we went downtown. Downtown is a little eclectic to say the least. I am not sure it's for everyone. That being said I had to share some of my favorite spots in Asheville.

The French Broad Chocolate Lounge. We had to wait a few minutes to order and a little bit longer to get our drinks but it was good. I would totally stick to the truffles and their iced coffee which was to die for.

The case for the truffles at the Chocolate Lounge. Pick up a menu just as you step in the door so you know what you want to order when you get to the front of the line.  

Terrible picture. Sorry. But...omg...all the Blue Ball glass jars a girl could want at a antique store in downtown Asheville.  

Antique rolling pins....sigh...I have to go back just to get one of these!
A bucket I am still fantasizing about.....I am in love!
I am not going to say anything....I know you are in love with this too!
When we got home Sophie opened her present we brought back from Asheville. The toy shop was so cool. They had toys you can't find other places. They gift wrap for free.
We got Sophie a new outfit for her baby doll. It cost more than the one Sophie was wearing. Baby doll clothes are expensive. In the baby's defense it was wearing a dress that one of my baby dolls wore when I was a little girl. And we know that must be very old!   

We also ate at the Tupelo Honey Cafe. Totally worth the 45 minute wait to get in. The food was as good as anywhere else I have ever eaten. Thank goodness we are getting one in downtown Knoxville! So exciting!

Last but not least a picture of the quilt I have been working on. It's all finished and it will be going to my friends baby Friday. His birthday is the 29th so I finished it just in time. I hope he has an awesome first birthday!

The back that I had such a hard time with.
Yeah! The front... I may not be the best quilter but by golly I can pick out some fabric!

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

All Star Quilt

Sometimes, when your quilting you start a project with a specific idea in mind and then you go looking for the fabric. That's just not how I roll. When I walk into a quilt show or a quilt shop I let the fabric do the talking. I love to buy fabric and then figure out who it's going to go to. I decided to post some pics of my latest project where I used some fabric for a friend of mine whose little boy is going to be celebrating his first birthday very soon. My original plan when I found the fabric was to make it a baby gift. It was supposed to be a little baby blanket. I thought I had enough fabric for two baby quilts. As the days turned into months I decided I better make the quilt a little bit bigger as he is getting bigger every day! I am just glad I finished it before he graduated from high school.

July before last when my sister was in town visiting, my mom, niece, sister, and I went to Pappy's Quilting near Maryville Tennessee. I found this line of fabric by Riley Blake. I fell in love when I saw it. It was so bright and colorful and I just had to have it. It is called All Star.

I wanted to piece the back to make it a little different but I had the hardest time figuring out how much fabric I needed. My sister and I did the math together using the Robert Kaufman app on her iphone but it  just wasn't measuring up when I got home.I kept laying it on my bed to try and figure it out to no avail. I had to have my mom help me. She is always saving the day!

A picture of the front of the quilt.

The back of the quilt. Check out the measuring tape. I measured it like twenty times and I was still short. I had to make a quick run to Pappy's to buy a little more fabric.

An up close view of my mom's amazing quilting!

The quilt on my mom's long arm sewing machine. She did a beautiful job!

 I did not take a picture of the quilt finished with the binding on it yet. I will post pictures soon! I have a couple other projects that I finished up just before summer was over that I am excited about sharing. That will have to wait too. I am now in the throws of getting ready for the first day of school so more on that later!

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Country Girl In the Making

This summer I have really been learning alot about canning food. On a recent trip to my sister-in-laws house my mother-in-law and I helped her work up her corn while she took care of my beautiful new niece. I learned how to make and can creamed corn and whole kernel corn. We worked up about three bushels of corn that day. It was so good I thought I would share how they make it and put it in the freezer.

Freezer Creamed Corn
1. Wash and desilk corn.

2. Use a sharp knife to cut the very tips of the kernels off the cob.

3. Once you have done this go back over the cob with the knife to "milk" or scrape of the remaining corn close to the cob. Be prepared...there will be corn on the ceiling after this step if your anything like me.

4. Once you have a large bowl of corn microwave the corn for 5 minutes and then stir. Repeat this step three more times, stirring after each 5 minute stint in the microwave. Now all you have to do is let it cool. For a looooong time! Even when you think it's cool, stir the corn because their will be pockets of warm spots in the corn and it needs to be cool to the touch throughout or it will sour when you put it in the freezer.

5. Once you have let the corn cool place about two and a half cups of corn in a quart size freezer bag and place in the freezer.

When you are ready to eat your corn all you will need to add is a touch of salt and pepper. The corn comes out so buttery and creamy there is no need for butter unless your really feeling sinful!

If you are going to make whole kernel corn blanch the cobs in boiling water 3 to four minutes and then let them cool enough to handle. Then you just take your corn and cut close to the cob the first time and do not scrape the cob.

While we were there my sister-in-law made the best blueberry jam. I tell you I am blessed to know so many talented women. I love how I have learned so much about sewing and farming this summer. They are good skills to know.

Between Luke Bryan, Miranda Lambert, my mama's sewing skills, and a good corn crop they've about turned me into real country girl.

Monday, July 2, 2012

Farmers Market Fun

So last Saturday I was able to make it to Market Square to the farmers market and to The French Market restaurant. If you don't mind waiting a few minutes you can get the best... and I do mean best... crepe ever! The restaurant was featured in the May issue of Southern Living. I dragged my friend Samantha with me and we had the best time. It's one of my favorite places to visit. Here are some pics that show some of the sights.  I remember coming to the World's Fair when I was a little girl. Okay I know I am old. Funny that my family would live all over the world and end up here.

Some of you might not know that I am totally a city girl at heart. I love the idea of being able to walk everywhere to get the things you need. This is one of my favorite places to live in Knoxville. No grass to keep up with and just a few plants to water. I will have a big yard at my Charleston house. Hey....a girl can dream!

The babies playing in the fountain at Market Square.
A shot of Market Square and the clock tower downtown. Lots of crafts and vegetables to look at.

The line for the food truck for Cruz farms. They were selling raw milk and it was crazy busy. I would have tried it but it was just too hot for milk!

The sign for the Cruz Farm Raw Milk truck. I thought this sign was too cute and all of the girls were dressed up in cute dresses, aprons, handkerchiefs and boots.

My best friend Sam chillin on the patio while we waited for our crepes at The French Market.

The crepes at The French Market. Featured in Southern Living. If you haven't been. You need to go. The crepe batter is flown in from France.

A pillow from a boutique in Market Square. I die. Must make and soon! This pillow was like 45 dollars.  I totally think I can do this!

 I just love going downtown. I feel lucky that there is so much to do right here around us. It is just finding the time to do them that's the problem. Get out and explore what East Tennessee has to offer and buy local whenever you can.  Please forgive the random photots below. I had to share them.

Random picture of a quilt I laid out for my mom. There was just to many colors and it was driving her crazy so she had me help her. I am really excited because I have a bundle of fabric just like this waiting for me to sew up!

Last but not least a random photo of Sophie showing off her mad swimming skills.  She loves the water!

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Summer Update

     Okay its been a while since I wrote a post so I have some catching up to do. As some of you may know I am a teacher and I am out of school for the summer. To be honest life has been so crazy it hasn't really seemed like summer started until a couple of days ago. So instead of writing a big long detailed story I am going to share the past couple of weeks in pictures!

Sophie's dance recital....I am so proud of how much she has improved over the year!

The wedding rehearsal dinner my family put on for my brother. It turned out pretty nice I think.

Somehow in all the excitement we were able to take Sophie and my sweet niece to Dollywood and Splash Country! So fun!

Some of the cupcakes I made for the rehearsal dinner. I also made oreo and strawberry. Talk about stress trying to not let them melt in the heat!

My brother got married and Sophie was the flower girl! She was so cute!

Okay I look like a goofball but Sophie took this picture so it is special to me! She loves to use the camera.

Just because I think this is such a pretty picture...although I need to crop it! The gutter in the background is just not lovely!

My dad and my brother at the wedding. They both looked so handsome!

My brother and his wife after cutting the cake. I think they look so cute!

Sophie on Father's Day. She was soooo....tired after all the exciting events for the week!

There was also a girls night out for my sister-in-law the week before the wedding. It was so fun. We went to a painting class and had a blast. I have to finish mine and then I will post a pic of it on my blog. My Aunts were also in from Arizona. It was so good to see them. I wrapped the past two weeks with a new niece and vacation bible school. My niece is so pretty. Hopefully pics will be coming soon. Bible school is exhausting and not for the faint of heart. However, Sophie is learning sooo much so it is worth it! Now I wonder what the next couple of weeks will bring!

Saturday, May 19, 2012

Bloggers' Quilt Festival

     I am so excited to be writing a post for the Bloggers’ Quilt Festival over at Amy’s Creative Side .  
If you are visiting from that site.... welcome! If your are visiting from another place such as Facebook or Pinterest please go check out the beautiful quilts at Amy's Creative Side. They are amazing!

     The quilt I chose to write about is the first quilt I ever made. I was so proud to make it all by myself from start to finish.

     Being the daughter of a quilter and an owner of a fabric shop, I resisted sewing completely for a long time. However, after several years of visiting my mom who owns Mountain Stitches in Gatlinburg, Tennessee I caught the fabric bug. I bought the Hushabye by Tula Pink fabric and the Scribbles pattern I used at the AQS quilt show in Knoxville, Tennessee several years ago. (I am so sad they aren't coming back this year)

    I think I broke every rule known to quilting when it came to binding this quilt but I don't care. I thought it was beautiful. It is my favorite fabric of all time and it will always be special to me.

    Now it sits on the back of my daughters chair at our dinning room table. I know it's my daughters because she threw a fit once when I moved it to another chair. I had one unhappy four year old on my hand. So my little girl will get to keep my first quilt and maybe someday...a long time from now....a long...long I will hold my grand babies in this quilt!
 here is the bonus photo....on my way outside to photograph my quilt I saw this pretty bunny sitting under a was so hot I just couldn't blame that bunny at all...