Sunday, March 30, 2014

San Antonio

Early in March, Husband and I went to Commodity Classic (representing the soybean industry) in San Antonio. Included are classes, annual meetings for various commodities (corn, soybeans, wheat, sorgum, etc.), ag speakers, a huge trade show and about 7,300 farmers.
We stayed at the River Walk Hyatt that was connected to the convention center. San Antonio's River Walk is beautiful, entertaining and convenient.
I met my friend Judy (above) and we spent the afternoon together. We met at this conference about 11 years ago and have met each other every year (but one) since. Getting to visit with her is one of my highlights each year. We became instant bosom friends, and share our love of faith, family, tea, good food, reading, nature, and beauty. As soon as we meet, we start talking! Our husbands have become friends also.
We ate at several neat restaurants with our state group. This place was a lovely old steak house in an historical building. Great food with great company.

This sign was spotted at another steakhouse with a little more relaxed atmosphere. Hee, hee.

Saturday, March 29, 2014

Tessellations-M.C. Escher

A week ago, we studied artist M.C. Escher. I taught the same lesson to both my little elementary class and to the middle/high school class. It was equally accessible and fascinating for both age levels. We watched a short youtube video about Escher, and then made our own tessellations. Tessellations are flat shapes that cover a plane with no overlapping and no gaps between shapes. It is the way Moroccan and other tiles cover a surface with design, or how a puzzle fits together.

I like the site There are a variety of ways to create tessellations, but we used the P-A-R-T method. Using a small square, (ours was about 3' x 3" to fit nicely on an 8 1/2 x 11" page) print the individual letters P-A-R-T in the corners of the paper left to right, top to bottom. Then an organic line is drawn intersecting the square from top to bottom, and another line drawn from side to side. Simple, not too complex lines work best. Curve them a bit or use wide angles. Cut on the lines to make four pieces out of the original square. Then the letters and shapes are re-assembled with the corners to the center and the letters spelling T-R-A-P. (Above.) Tape together, precisely lining up edges. Now place your shape in the center of a sheet of paper and trace around it. It does not matter which way you turn or tip it for the first one. Do what looks good to you.  When done outlining the first shape, slide it to one side until it fits like a puzzle "into" the shape you just copied. Fit it carefully, hold and copy around it. Keep sliding and fitting the shape to the ones on the page until the whole page is full of interlocking shapes and the design "runs off" the edges.
Now look at your shapes and see if you can find a picture in it. My tessellation looked like a bird in flight. (above) I added a few lines for an eye, beak and wing/tail feathers and repeated them across the design. Outline in black if desired, and color. The student below made a striking design in simple black and white pattern.
Not everyone wants to alter their shapes into a picture tile. Plain tessellations can be treated as more of a Moroccan tile and colored in a pattern.

Wednesday, March 26, 2014


Laura and I had a girls date night and movie with friends Hannah and Nancy. Good fun!
We visited the hospital to greet new great niece/cousin Madeline Ruth. Brother Wesley looks all grown up now!

Had a birthday lunch with sister Lissa, Dad and Mom and Uncle Mark. Lis, Dad and I have Feb/March birthdays. We stopped by Lissa's church remodel project that she is managing.
Brother Marshall and Piper were down for the birthdays too. Daughter Anna, S-I-L Dena and I also went for massages and brunch. We have tried to plan this for a long time and it finally came together over my birthday. Extra fun!
Visited Grandma and Grandpa G. while they played dominoes at the home. Uh oh! Daughter W. is almost as tall as Grandma. Last one of ours to reach this milestone.

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

EU Mission

Husband participated in a soybean biotech mission to the EU in Feb.  
He another Midwest producer and two soybean staff spent two days in Brussels taking about 17 meetings in the first 2 days. They met with various countries' Ag and political officials and discussed biotech and international marketing issues.
Then they split up and Husband's team went to Paris and the other team went to Rome. Below is the office building in Paris that he had meetings in.

I'm not sure who she is.
Their last stop was in Berlin. The other team went to Warsaw.

On the flight home, they saw beautiful views and huge icebergs near Iceland.

Thursday, March 20, 2014

T-shirt Rugs

I have been working on more t-shirt rugs, and seem to be getting better at them. I like the look of full rows of color versus the random rows I was doing before.

I use single crochet with a Q hook. The top rugs are about 30-35 chains across and about 50-55 rows long. It takes approximately 6 adult t-shirts for this size. The purple one is made in more of a runner  size, in purple, for daughter A.

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Valentine Party

Love was in the air. In Feb, Daughter W. attended friend E.'s Valentine party. E's older sisters used to have this party when our M. was younger. It was fun to see the next batch of kids continue the fun, now that they are old enough.
There were crafts, red treats, party games and tea with milk and sugar.
We helped the girls make fabric covered notebook journals.

Sunday, March 16, 2014

Cool Thrift

 Beautiful colors and designs in ceramic and glass. Each cost under 75 cents.
 Great old set of books, a couple missing, but a steal for $5.
 Neat, neat vintage homemade apron with beautiful handwork. $3!
Can you imagine the time this must have taken to embroider?

Saturday, March 15, 2014

Bogota Mission

Husband went on a Soybean Association mission to Bogota, Columbia, in January. One day, they watched a demonstration of a soy "cow" machine used to make soy milk and soy protein for use in third world countries.

They had meetings and met with foreign soybean buyers.