Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Flowers Everywhere

Blood is that fragile scarlet tree we carry within us.
~Osbert Sitwell

Yesterday morning I had to have blood drawn.  Just a few routine tests that hadn't been done for awhile.  You know the kind - glucose, thyroid, platelet count, etc.  DH had to have his drawn too.  We arrived at the lab just minutes before it opened and were 3rd and 4th in line.  We didn't want to be late since this was a fasting test and we were both hungry and missing our morning coffee.  We were checked in and had hardly sat down when our numbers were called.  My DH had his blood drawn - no problem - wham-bam thank you mam - and he was done.  Then there was me.  I think I had a newbie.  She came over and looked at my arm and asked where they normally took 'it' from.  I showed her my left arm, inner elbow area.  The normal place most people have there's drawn.  Tech - "Are you sure? You have such small veins."  Me - "Yes they are and they roll too" (which they really do).  Tech - "Okay, I'll try".  Slap, slap, slap.  Push with the finger.  Slap, slap, slap.  At least she was smart enough to use a butterfly needle.  In went the needle - no blood.  Move the needle to the right - nothing - and to the left - nothing.  Pull it part way out - nothing.  Tech - "Are you sure this is where they have used before?".  Me - "Yes" sigh.  Tech "This isn't working".  Me (thinking) - "No shit!".  So she asked to see my right hand.  More slapping and poking with her finger.  Tech - "Would you mind if I try the back of your hand?"  Me - "Wherever you need to - go for it".  It still took her two sticks.  Three vials later and I now have a sore muscle in my hand but surprisingly no bruise.  It's always fun to be someones pin cushion!



 Pineapple Upside Down Cake
Today is National Pineapple Upside-down Cake Day. Below are 10 fun facts. Enjoy!

1. Jim Dole invented canned pineapple in 1903.
2. The term "cake" wasn't used much before 1870.
3. Pineapple upside-down cake was cooked in a cast iron skillet on top of the stove.
4. In 1925, the Hawaiian Pineapple Company (now called Dole) held a recipe contest. It drew 60,000 entries of which 2,500 were for pineapple upside-down cake.
5. No one knows who first came up with the pineapple upside-down cake; historian can only guess.
6. The classic pineapple upside-down cake recipe had maraschino cherries; however, they weren't around too much before the 1930's.
7. Pineapple is a tropical fruit native to Central and South America.
8. Caribbean Indians placed pineapples or pineapple crowns outside the entrances of their homes to symbolize friendship and hospitality.
9.The Spanish explorers thought pineapples looked like pine cones, so they called them "Pina." The English added "apple" to associate it with juicy delectable fruits.
10. Pineapple, "halakahiki" in Hawaiian, meaning foreign fruit, has been grown in Hawaii since the early 1800's.



Today, being Wednesday, means it's time for me to share a hexagon flower...

Would you believe I don't have a single piece of Easter fabric in my stash.  After digging through some scraps, I did manage to find something that could signify Easter - little baby chicks.  The top one is even hatching out of a pink egg.  This will be my Easter flower for One Flower Wednesday.  To see more hexie flowers around blogland, just click on the link above or on the button on the right.  Big thanks to Karen for being the organizer and 'hostess with the mostess' of this group!

I also added more stepping stones and a few more flowers to my Grandmother's Flower Garden.  It's still awfully small.  I may be a great grandmother before this garden is complete - lol!

And just in time for Wednesday, the mail brought.....

this beautiful, patriotic hexie flower from Shruti.  Shruti was my January swap partner in the Inchy Hexagon Flower Swap.  I love how she alternated the petals.  Thanks, Shruti!



DH took this picture the other night. Against the dark background you sure can see all of the new growth on one of our Coastal Redwood trees.



I spent some time yesterday hand stitching the binding on my quilt.  I'm half way through and hope to finish the stitching tomorrow.

The end is in sight!



Today I am going to make the Designer Mystery BOM #11.



A Quilting Life is having a sponsored giveaway.  You could win a $25 gift certificate to Fashionable Fabrics.  This giveaway is open through Thursday, April 21.

Freckled Whimsy is having a giveaway.  KarrieLyne is giving away three charm packs of Treasures and Tidbits.  This giveaway ends Thursday, April 21, at 9:00 pm CST.

Favecrafts is having a giveaway.  They are giving away a Cricut Expression 2: Anniversary Edition machine.  This giveaway ends May 14th and you can enter once daily.

FabricWorm is having their weekly giveaway.  This week you could win Momo Wing It! Solid Stripes in Fat Quarters, 7 total.  This giveaway ends Monday, April 25, at 8:30 pm PST.

Made It On Monday is having a Poppyseed Fabric giveaway.  You could win a half yard bundle of the New Sugar and Spice in red.  This giveaway ends Monday, April 25, at 5:00 pm PST.

The Intrepid Thread is having a giveaway and there is a coupon code for 20% off in her store, too.  She is giving away two charm packs of Sherbet Pips.  This giveaway ends Monday, April 25.



Do you ever have trouble deciding what to make for dinner?  I do! Especially this time of year when there aren't a whole lot of fresh vegetables available - well, at least not from the local Farmer's Market.  We have been having a lot of frozen, fix-it-quick meals.  They really aren't half bad.  The other night we had some pork dumplings that were really quite good.  Added some brown rice and a salad and dinner was ready in under an hour.  It would have been ready in 15 minutes if the rice didn't take 40 minutes to cook.  I'm getting stuck in a rut.  Nothing sounds good.  I venture over to and peruse the assortment of recipes there.  A  half hour later - still nothing sounds good.  Can't afford to go out to dinner all the time.  My DH was getting tired of the frozen food - even offered to prepare a meal or two.  I give him free reign on the weekends but don't think it's fair that he should come home after a full day of work and then have to slave in the kitchen too.  Besides, I want to eat before 7:00 - the earlier the better.  I know I will get out of the 'meh' feeling for food soon.  Too bad it's only the sweets and fattening things that sound good right now.  LOL!

Vegetables are a must on a diet. I suggest carrot cake, zucchini bread, and pumpkin pie.
~Jim Davis

Wednesday is the half way mark - are you ready for the second half?


Sarah Craig said...

First of all, I can't believe you didn't ask for a more experienced "sticker"! Thanks for the reminder of pineapple upside down cake - I may have to make some now! It was one of the few edible things my mom knew how to make, and brings back fond memories! I know what you mean about meals - I was so glad when hubby broke out the grill the other day - summer meals are so much easier and don't heat up the house so badly!! Have a great day!!

Lisa Marie said...

I have often said that I don't mind cooking the meals if someone else would just plan them. Like you, I'm sometimes tired of the things I've cooked again and again. I've found some good, easy recipes at the Kraft foods website. They use lots of salad dressings and convenience products and some are pretty tasty.

Sallie said...

I would have asked for someone else to stick me! I don't let them stick me in my hand. Your chick hexie is cute! Have a blessed week and Happy Easter!

Barb said...

Love your hexies.....

Pineapple upside down cake is my husband's favorite....

I have great veins, I was told I would be a good drug problem (I hate needles).

Donna said...

I have the small, rolling veins therefore sigh when drawing blood is needed. It always takes forever, feels uncomfortable and leaves bruising.

Love the Jim Davis quote - it changes my prospective on vegetables.

Lynda said...

Once again your hexie flower is so cute. Perfect little chicks for Easter. Love the patriotic one too. I had decided, at my doctors insistance, that I should eat healthier a few weeks ago. I was doing great until this week...I've made lime cookies (that's a fruit) and chocolate cookies (can that be considered a vegetable?). Guess I'd better get back to the real thing soon.

Melissa said...

I just love the bright colors in your Grandma's Flower Garden!

I have been rather MEH, too. I blame the clouds. Come on sun! My dinner time issues are that when it is cold and gray, I want bad for you foods!! Like homemade chicken, and noodles and lasagna, and fresh made mashed potatoes with real beef gravy. All fine once in a while, but I crave them every night!

jennifer said...

Don't cha love it when you get somebody new in the lab. sheesh I love Pineapple Upside Down Cake Yummy.

Needled Mom said...

Your flowers look great, Linda. I love all of the white stepping stones with them. The Easter chick one is too cute.

I think I would have asked for the other plebotomist to draw mine after her first slapping!

I get a magazine called Cuisine at Home and it has the best recipes that only take about 30 minutes. When I get in a funk, I grab one of them and we have tried all sorts of great easy recipes.

Scrappy quilter said...

I love your hexie flowers. Sorry you had to get your blood drawn. Hugs

Melody said...

What a great post. All your hexie flowers are great but that little Easter one is the BEST

annmarie said...

My mom make alot of pineapple upside down cakes when we were kids so of course when I was in college I was having PUDC withdrawal & had to have one. In the dorm we only had an electric fry pan so we gave it a try. After 4 hours it still wasn't done but we couldn't wait any longer - dumped it upside right & ate all the cherries, pineapple & brown sugar goo! Haven't made one since but I think I will this weekend - thanks for the reminder!

Sheila said...

That was a terrible experience! Ugh!
The cake looks yummy :)
Cute little chicks, garden quilt coming along nicely.

Annemieke Price-Talen said...

Nice flowers with the little birdies.

Gr annemieke.

WoolenSails said...

Those chicks are perfect, so cute. I was wondering if you were putting them all together and now I can see them, I love them all together with the white, really works so well together. Today I need to do some hexie cutting, so I have them ready to work on.


Paula said...

I loved reading your post, and now I think I will bake one pineapple upside down cake mmm. What a nice flower with the little cute birdies, and your garden is growing nicely.

Greetings Paula

Staci said...

Wow! I guess I'm a meanie, but I wouldn't have let her stick me the second time. Once I had to have three vials drawn, big ones, too, not the small ones. The woman stuck me 5 times, and did that digging around thing as well. Finally the blood was drawn, and she started slapping band aids on me, and she turned around fast and knocked the vials off the counter and on to the floor where they broke! She called for a janitor and turns to me with a fresh needle in hand. "No WAY!", I told her. "I want someone who actually knows what they are doing!" The woman was angry with me, and told me NO! Her raised voice drew attention of others, and when the situation was explained, another lady came in and did the blood draw. One stick and it didn't even hurt. That first lady made me black and blue all over. Makes me shudder to think of it! I'm going to have to have blood drawn this month, too. I always wonder what will happen.

By the way, your ducky hexie is adoreable!

Erica said...

I've been a follower of your blog for awhile. I love all the little facts you post and your hexagons are the cutest! I just joined One Flower Wednesday myself because of your blog!

Linda said...

Sorry you had such a bad blood drawing experience. That can make you feel queasy for a whole day!
I love the little hexie flower with the chicks!

Snoodles said...

I am so familiar with your experience...just had it drawn to check levels of RBC and Hemo. I am always apprehensive that I'll get a rookie, cos mine roll too! Well, at least I don't have to go back for a month!
Your "chick" hexie was adorable!
Jacque in SC

Megan Harmeyer said...

The duck hexie is cute! And the quilt is coming along. What a great idea to use clips to hold your quilt together. Less painful than pins! I'm in the same meh state for dinner. I sat down and made a menu for the week and it took FOREVER to put together. Oh, and big surprise...I like the patriotic hexie.

Anne said...

Sorry about the inept "vampire." I had my blood drawn yesterday morning, too. My doctor calls phelbotomists "vampires." My vampire also used a butterfly, but she was able to draw blood with the first, relatively painless stick. You'd think that with blood pressure of 241/113, my veins would spontaneously burst forth like "Old Faithful!" I am terribly sorry about your unfortunate experience.

Love the little chick hexagon block. So cute!

Can't wait to see that finished quilt. My project hasn't progressed at all. I did attend a Floriani event last night, though. Walter Floriani himself revealed his secrets for achieving perfect embroidery. However, I wasn't sufficiently impressed to spend $1,400 on software! The program was interesting, though, and I learned useful tips. Now I just need to put them into practice!

Thanks for sharing the giveaway links!

Vroomans' Quilts said...

I can relate to the poor 'sticker' - been there. I not only have veins that run, but explode, and that scares the piss out of a newbie. I love pineapple upsidedown cake - but cast iron is the real way to go! Hmmmmm!! Your duckie hexie is just so darn cute.
You are lucky you have farmer's markets open - I don't like fast,frozen foods - maybe some stir-fry over rice or noodles. One skillet meals are fast and tasty.

Jeanette said...

The chicks are so cute. Looks very Easter like. Happy Stitching

Just One More Thing said...

I will probably dream of Upside Down Cake tonight. MMMMMMMMMMMMMM I love it:) Your hexies are lovely. I won't even comment on the other topic --just thinking about it makes me queasy.

Joanna said...

Oh gosh, that lab experience sounds awful. I love your baby chick hexie, and the picture of pineapple upside down cake. Think I'll make some.

Gene Black said...

I am not nearly as scared of needles as I once was. BUT if the tech acts unsure, I tell them - you get one chance, if you can't get "it" then you need to get someone who can. If you try to use me as a pin cushion, I will use you as a punching bag! (no I don't play!)

I love pineapple. My favorite way is fresh, but I will eat it from a can also. Mmmmmm

Nancy said...

Oh, Linda. That was exactly my experience the last time I had blood drawn. They always have trouble finding the vein but this was the first time they used the back of my hand. I always appreciate when you get a really good nurse who knows how to draw blood!

Karen said...

Oh what fun at the lab! I can't get over arriving just minutes before it opened and being 3rd or 4th in line. If I arrived an hour ahead of time, I would be about 15th in line!

Sweet Easter flower and look how nice they are together.

LuAnn said...

Your Grandmother's flower garden quilt is bright and it. The pineapple upside down cake looks really good. I may have to make one of those for Easter.

Wendy said...

Adorable ducks on your hexie for this week. And your quilt is looking great with the white borders. Doesn't it feel good to see it layed out and taking shape?

Barbara said...

I have small veins too. I always drink lots of water the day before a stick. That seems to help. I'm totally with you on the dearth of vegetables this time of year. Thank goodness asparagus is almost here.

Renate said...

What a beautiful flower. Just right for easter!

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