Home Tour: My Backyard Garden

Welcome to my backyard garden.  I am excited to share the journey of building this backyard garden.  It is definitely still a work in progress.  But isn’t that the definition of a garden?

I adore mature landscaping.  With that in mind, my goal in the first year was to get the “infrastructure plants” in, so the garden could begin maturing.

August is near the end of our dry season in the west.  When the rain starts, so does the growing season, and I didn’t want to miss a day of that!

With that goal in mind, let’s have a look around, shall we?

Until last year when the home was built, this land was a cow pasture and literally millions of years of weeds grass.

And on this day 1-year ago, The Hubs and I got the keys to our new home.

SEVEN MONTHS of decisions, planning, waiting, watching…

and waiting…

and waiting…


[Read more…]

The Cow And The Bird

I couldn’t resist sharing this series of shots I captured with a super duper zoom lens.

Now pay attention.

The birds around here wear camouflage.

Watch the head.

A Cow And A BirdComing in for a landing.

A Cow And A BirdChecking for fleas.

A Cow And A BirdGot one.

A Cow And A BirdNow it’s time to go.

A Cow And A BirdI hope the bird scratched the cow’s itch while she was up there.

The least one could do for this poor pregnant mother.


ISO 400

Focal Length 190mm

Aperture f/10

Shutter Speed 1/500

No Flash


How To Fold A Fitted Sheet

For years and years and years and years and…

I dreaded taking a fitted sheet off the clothesline or out of the dryer.

How To Fold A Fitted Sheet

How To Fold A Fitted Sheet

In the beginning it was the *only* fitted sheet, so it went back on the bed, but after many years, I scrounged up the money to buy a second sheet, and that’s when I began fretting over this fitted sheet business.

Many years later, I got good at making a weird ball of the fitted sheet, and having one “clean edge”, that faced out on the shelf.

But the sheet was always super wrinkly after, and what girl likes wrinkles!?

It would just have to do, cuz I had no idea how to make it better.

Then one day I was watching Martha Stewart.

This was before she went to jail.

I think.

And she had this random tip on how to fold a fitted sheet.

Since that day, my life in the linen closet has never been the same.

[Read more…]

Getting Started Sewing: How To Wind A Bobbin

When I bought my first sewing machine, everything about sewing was totally foreign to me.

I went through the manual step-by-step trying to figure out how to wind a bobbin.  After much frustration, I scoured the internet high and low looking for online tutorials for my machine, the Brother CS6000i.


I know there’s at least one person out there doing what I did…cuz you know…great minds do think alike.


Every machine is slightly different, so grab your manual and follow along.

Today I am going to share how to wind a bobbin on the Brother CS6000i Sewing Machine.

I don’t know how experienced seamstresses or tailors do it, but I am guessing that having a few threaded bobbins lying around ready-to-go keeps a project moving along.

How To Thread Bobbins - Brother CS6000i Sewing Machine

When you’re buying bobbins, keep in mind that sizes vary depending on the machine.

It was easy for me to find the size for my machine at the local fabric store, and now I have a pretty decent stash.

Tutorial: How To Wind A Bobbin

Step 1

Load thread on the spool pin.

Use the handy illustrations on the top of the machine to get the thread placement just right.

Winding A Bobbin - Brother CS6000i

Step 2

Wind the thread clockwise around the bobbin 4 or 5 times, then pass the end of the thread through the guide slit in the bobbin winder seat.

Cut the extra thread with the thread cutter.

Winding A Bobbin - Brother CS6000i

[Read more…]

My First Sewing Machine – Brother CS6000i

So my post, Miss MacGyver Teaches Me How To Sew has got you itching to learn how to sew.

This post is for you.

The Brother has been a great intro-plus machine for $151.99 (and free shipping!).

From Amazon’s website, features include:

  • Free-arm computerized sewing machine; with 60 stitch functions, 7 styles of 1-step buttonholes, and variety of snap-on presser feet
  • Computerized stitch selection on LCD screen; with auto threading, tension control dial, and auto-set drop-in bobbin
  • 110-volt machine operated with either foot pedal or 1-touch button for start, stop, and reverse stitching; dual LED light
  • Accessories include wide table accessory for quilting and more; hard cover case protects in storage

Click here to learn more about the Brother CS6000i Sewing Machine.

Sewing Machine - Brother CS6000i

And to read about why 658 people love this machine on Amazon reviews.

Stay tuned for my first tutorial on sewing.

Getting Started: How To Wind A Bobbin.

***Brother is not a sponsor.

Miss MacGyver Teaches Me How To Sew

When my Big Young’un was just a Baby Young’un, I was talking to my out-of-state cousin on the phone about Motherhood.  The whole Motherhood thing was new to me, and she had 3 under her belt (and they were all still little), so I knew she could relate.

There’s nothing like talking to another mom while she is still in it.

I’m convinced that as soon as our kids start getting bigger, we forget the timeline of baby development.  Perhaps I’ve heard too many stories of babies who could sing the ABC song at 12-months-old.  I’m pretty sure that didn’t really happen, but someone really told me that.

When my own 12-month-old couldn’t even point out an A, a B, or a C.

When Young’un #2 was born, there were a whole lot of times I said to myself, “geez, I forgot all about this part!”  And my girls are only 22 months apart!

S’ok that parents of adult children remember things differently, right?  I’m sure it’s mother nature’s way of ensuring a future generation.

My cousin made a recommendation that would turn out to be some of the best advise I’ve ever been given in my lifetime.  And I thank my lucky stars everyday that I made the effort to do as she suggested.

Her advise?  Sign up for a Gymboree class.

My cousin assured me that I would meet tons of other moms there, in the same boat.  If nothing else, it would be a way for Baby Young’un and me to get out of the house. [Read more…]

Pinterest My Heart

Pinterest, how I love thee?  Let me count the ways…

You have captured my heart and my imagination.

I am no longer bogged down by endless bookmarks, scolling through millions of pages to find that one image that I wanted to remember for the rest of my life.

And I get chill bumps remembering that time so many years ago when a similar phenomenon sucked me into internet abyss for hours on end.

Just like facebook, I have found myself sitting for hours with my pin one click away just looking for things I want to reference at some point in the future.

And until I reach the end of the internet (which at one point *did* seem like a real possibility), I can see a life with pins and boards.

Endless ideas.  Endless images.

Now when I see something totally awesome anywhere on the internet, I can put that image in a special place to look at forever.

My only hope is that the pictures I “repin” give proper credit to the original content creator.

I am gonna predict Pinterest will be big.

Really big.

Facebook big.

Pandora big.

[Read more…]

Jellies At Monterey Bay Aquarium

Monterey California is no doubt one of my favorite places on Earth.

You can read more about Our Monterey Bay Aquarium Adventure by clicking here.

Today I am sharing my top shot from our visit to the Aquarium.

There’s just something about Jellyfish.

So mysterious.

So calm and peaceful to see yet so dangerous to touch.

Monterey Bay Aquarium - Jellyfish

If you’re ever in the area, consider checking out Monterey Bay Aquarium.  It’s not just for kids!


ISO 1600

Focal Length 28mm

Aperture f/3.5

Shutter Speed 1/50

No Flash



Big Basin Redwoods State Park

The one thing my sister-in-law really wanted to do while she was visiting from Georgia was see a redwood tree.

If we still lived at our old house, she could sit and stare at a few 50-year-old ones all day and all night.  My neighbor might even let her camp under them.

Since we don’t live there anymore, Big Basin Redwoods State Park had to do.

The Hub found this place, and I have to say, he really knows how to pick ’em!

We packed a picnic and headed for the hills.  The Santa Cruz Mountains, that is!

It’s a little bit of a trek on a curvy road that goes on for miles, but well worth the drive.  And an easy day trip from the San Francisco Bay Area.

Redwoods At Big Basin Redwoods State Park

Redwoods At Big Basin Redwoods State Park

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Our Monterey Bay Aquarium Adventure

I am still reminiscing about our vacation.

Monterey is one of my favorite places on Earth.

I love the scuba diving.

I love the fresh air.

I love the mild summer days.

And I love the Monterey Bay Aquarium.

Monterey Bay Aquarium

We saw a kelp forest.

Monterey Bay Aquarium - A Kelp Forest

We saw Silver Dollars.

Monterey Bay Aquarium - Silver Dollars

We saw Anemones.

Monterey Bay Aquarium - Anemones

[Read more…]