French Vanilla and other French stuff.

The French are good at a lot of things, you know?

Bread, chocolate, art and literature, the Statue of Liberty (thanks, guys!), science (way to go Marie Curie!), the list goes on and on.

Where would we be without our French brothers and sisters? Not drinking pasteurized milk, watching movies, scuba diving, driving around on inflatable tires.

And, of course French vanilla, though French vanilla isn’t from France. (Most vanillas are named from their country of origin.) It’s a way the French made vanilla ice cream. Richer, caramelized, and with egg-based custards. Whatever the reason, again I thank France for their contribution to the wonderful taste of French vanilla.

(thanks MissouriQuiltCo.com)

The Color Blue — Who Knew?

An enormous portion of the world we see is blue, between the sky above us and the oceans and lakes that cover the earth. It’s no wonder that most people love blue.

But the thing about the ocean and sky is that the color can’t be bottled up—unlike flowers, rocks, and all the other things people historically used to make dye. The color blue is all around us, but for so long it was out of our reach.

Today, thanks to the modern science of dying things, we can all dress like queens and emperors every time we throw on a blue t-shirt!

(thanks MissouriQuiltco.com)

Poor Grant!

“If you fail to plan, you plan to fail.” —Benjamin Franklin

I love a good sale, and it makes my day when I come across one I didn’t expect. But some sales aren’t good news for everyone.

Like recently at a grocery store in Canada, there was a sale on frozen french fries, with bags of fries piled high and a large yellow sign advertising that they were only $1.00, but the somewhat petty sale sign also announced that this was the “Grant Ordered Too Many Fries Sale.”

 Poor Grant! One case of poor planning and he just couldn’t catch a break. But at least plenty of people got a good chuckle and some cheap french fries!

(thanks MissouriQuiltCo.com)

Code Red!

Red is the power color.

Women with red lipstick get hit on more often than any other color. People using with red poker chips bet more. (Okay, maybe it’s not good to encourage even more gambling, but you get the idea.) Taekwondo competitors wear red win more bouts. Go figure. Do their red suits blind their opponents? Don’t know, but I do know that red velvet cake is only a chocolate cake with red food coloring dumped in. But, somehow, it’s better than other chocolate cakes. In the Native American color wheel, red is the power color, the color to wear heading into a scary situation.

I could go on forever but you get the idea. Red is great. Wonderful. Strong. Important. Wear red!

So why is red underrepresented in uniforms? You’d think that armies and police everywhere would dress their people in red to present a more powerful image but the only one that comes to mind at the moment I’m writing is the Canadian Mounties, and even they have downplayed red in recent years.

What gives, guys? Get with the program and think red! Wear red. Get out there and show the world how powerful you are!

(thanks MissouriQuiltCo.com)

Creative People

When you hear someone say “it’s the closest thing to paradise,” they’re usually talking about a tropical island.

I get it. Who wouldn’t want to lounge on a white sand beach with warm turquoise water?

But creative people are not great at doing nothing all day long, so although it might sound tempting, I have a feeling you’d start to get bored if all you did was relax on the beach.

That’s why for creative types, paradise is more than just comfortable lounging; paradise for us has more to do with inspiration, time to create, and surrounding yourself with beautiful things

(thanks MissouriQuiltCo)

Lazy People Invent Things Because …

Lech Walesa, winner of the Nobel Peace Prize, once said: “I’m lazy. But it’s the lazy people who invented the wheel and the bicycle because they didn’t like walking or carrying things.” 

Call it laziness, creativity, or genius, whatever it is, I love finding tools that help me get things done in a smarter way. Such smart and lazy people have given the world inventions like a baby romper that dusts the floor while they crawl, glasses with mirrors arranged so that you can read a book in your lap even when you lie down flat, and suitcases that your kids can ride on through the airport like a scooter.

Most of the people I know, including me, can be classified as lazy and we all not only invent things to make life easier (if we are the inventive type), we appreciate anything someone else has already invented for us.

(thanks MissouriQuiltCo)

Following Rules — Or Not

Following Rules — Or Not.When I was a little girl I was a serious rule-follower. Something as small as a disappointed glance from an authority figure was enough to make my stomach churn. So when my first grade teacher got tired of wasted art supplies and made a rule that the kids needed to stop breaking crayons just for fun, you’d think I would easily fall in line.

But something got into me that day, and when I picked up my perfect red crayon to draw I suddenly had an urge I just couldn’t resist. When Mrs. Robbins wasn’t looking, I held my crayon in two hands and broke it easily with a satisfying snap.

Later that night, my mom just couldn’t understand why I was too sick to eat dinner and went to bed with a tummy ache.

I finally confessed, but the tummy ache lasted into the weekend, until my dad ran into Mrs. Robbins at the grocery store, told my story, and she said all was forgiven.

As an adult I looked back and realized the grocery store meeting was very likely a merciful fantasy fabricated by my dad just to make me feel better. But it worked!

(thanks MissouriQuiltCo.com)

Heritage Quilts

The United States has a beautiful history of quilting, influenced by all of the different ethnic groups that settled here over the years, as well as the necessity of ingenuity and hard work to survive the early days. One tradition was for a young girl to make thirteen quilts before she was married, twelve for everyday use in her future home, and a wedding quilt, her masterpiece which she would begin work on once she was engaged. Friends and family would gather to help her quilt this final quilt. A form of this tradition continues today, every time we make a quilt for a special couple tying the knot. Quilting is our heritage Thanks, Missouriquiltco.com