Welcome to American Homestead. I'm happy you have found my blog. Make yourself comfy and see what's been happening around here. I write about the things that interest me ~ creativity, travel, food, nature and a happy life. I'd love to read your comments.

Saturday, May 31, 2014

An American Homestead: The Seiberling Mansion

Kokomo, Indiana

There is nothing I like more than spending the
day rambling around an old historic house.  Today
we traveled about an hour from our home to Kokomo,
Indiana to visit the Seiberling Mansion.

The house was built in 1890 for industrialist Monroe
Seiberling.  Seiberling came to Kokomo during the 
gas boom and the house was built at a cost of $50,000,
a fortune at that time.   The style is a combination of 
Neo Jacobean (Queen Anne), Romanesque Revival and 
it is striking.  

The foyer has beautiful wood carvings and a 
lovely staircase.  There are windows made of
opalescent glass and you can see holes in many
of the mirrors from vandals of the past shooting
BB guns at them.

The music room has an old pump organ and
at Christmas they have someone come in to 
play it.

An old victrola also in the music room.

I love the attention to detail in older homes, every
piece of hardware is decorative, even the door hinges
and this door bell.

The master bedroom is on the second floor in
the front of the house.  The windows are curved
glass, Mr. Seiberling owned a glass company and
they were specially made.  It is a bright, nice sized
 room without being like the humongous master 
bedrooms of today's McMansions.

I love the idea of a bed warmer.

I am always intrigued by children's rooms.  I find the old 
toys and books to be so imaginative and fun.

I loved the old sled and the skooter made for ice,
I have never seen one of them before.

There are many rooms in the house including a lovely
dining room but the photos were too dark to show.  Since 
this is the home of the county historical society, many of
the rooms are given over to displays of history of the county.

Worth a visit!

Friday, May 30, 2014

The Morning Sun

I love to walk around my garden in the 
early morning.  The dappled sunlight that
comes through the branches of the trees is
so soft and gentle and it makes the flowers
look especially beautiful.


I am determined to enjoy the little things
in life more this summer.  The past two
summers flew by in a blur and I don't want 
that to happen again.

I have crossed off a few major things on
the to do list.  Quilt Market has come and
gone and I sent in the first draft of my 
second book (a week early!).  I still have
projects and samples to make for the book
but I feel I'm on track with everything there.

So now I have time to breathe and well,
time to stop and smell the roses.  I look
forward to spending time with my family.
We meet up at 9 every night and spend a 
few hours together, I want to hang out with
my friends, I want to take field trips to nearby
places that I don't get a chance to visit because
I'm usually too busy.

I want to have time to notice the details,
like how those stamens are loaded with
pollen.  That plant will be a bee fest later

The peonies are beginning to burst.  I gathered
up a bundle to bring inside because they smell
so delicious.

This guy was saying, nope, too early, I'm
not ready to unfurl my petals, I'm still sleeping.

I arranged a vase of blooms to enjoy
inside.  Remember to have time to live!

Friday, May 16, 2014

Book Signing at International Quilt Market

I am about to fall into my pillows and go to Dreamland
but I wanted to post this about an exciting thing that
I did today.
Today was my book signing at the C&T Publishing booth 
at International Quilt Market.  I got to meet so many
wonderful people from all over the US and Canada.

And this was the line ~ the line ~ it was so exciting.
I had so much fun I was disappointed when it was over...

Now it's sleepy time!

Monday, May 12, 2014

Saturday, May 10, 2014

The Summer of Home ~ Happy Birthday Mr. Wonderful

Rain had been predicted for today but it turned 
out to be a beautiful Spring day so we decided to
take advantage of the lovely weather and head out.

Late last night Brennan came home from
college for the summer and he joined Mr.
Wonderful and I for a day out to celebrate
Mr. W's birthday.  We went to a few local
Farmer's Markets.

It is so early in the season, there was little
produce available, only some asparagus and
rhubarb.  But there were many other vendors,
we got some citronella solid perfume to try to
help keep the mosquitoes off our skin, some 
local honey, homemade dog biscuits, a baking 
mix and a lavender bergamot orange goat's
milk soap that I look forward to using tomorrow.

I guess it's true that goats will try to 
eat anything.

We then went out for a lovely lunch at
our favorite Mediterranean restaurant 
and Mr. W was surprised with a birthday
baklava dessert.

Wonderful got a new grill for his birthday.
We had to fire it up for dinner.

We dined on the deck, we had Adana kebabs,
veggie kebabs and Shepherd's salad.

And finished the night with cake, singing
and presents at G&T's.

It was a perfect day at our American Homestead.
We miss you Katie!!!!

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Mark Your Calendars!

Mark your calendars for Monday, May 12 at 4pm.
I'll be the guest of Pat Sloan, the host of American 
Patchwork & Quilting Radio.

You can listen here:

We'll be talking about my book, inspiration, 
quilting techniques and the Summer of Home.
Please join us.  I'll be the first guest that day
so tune in early.

Sunday, May 4, 2014

Orioles at Avalon!

This is one of those amazing things that happen 
in my life ~ little things that let me know I am
taking the right path.
Each summer I decide on a theme for the season,
things like the Summer of Pie or the Summer of Fun.
This year I am calling the Summer of Home.
Our kids will be home this summer, BB will be arrive
next weekend and KK leaves for Spain next week but 
will come home to spend the summer with us in June.
KK starts her Senior year next year and BB plans to 
be studying abroad so this may be the last summer
 we will all be together at home before they head out
to their own apartments and beyond.
The past two summers have flown by, I have done 
nothing but work and though it has all been very
exciting, I need a bit more balance in my life.  I want
to enjoy my home and my gardens and have time to
watch the birds in my yard.
Mr. Wonderful was headed out to the home improvement
store this afternoon and I asked him to pick up a few 
thistle feeders because we love our finches.  I then said
we should think about getting an Oriole feeder this year
because I'd love to be able to attract Orioles, which we 
have never seen in our yard in the 20 years we have
lived here.

I went up to the kitchen to get a photo of the
Irish Tea Bread I made today.

I spotted a Cardinal at the platform feeder in the
crab apple tree and had to take a picture.

As I was looking through the view finder of
the camera I saw a flash of orange and thought 
it must be a Robin.  Then I looked out into the 
back of the yard and saw the brilliant flash of
orange that belongs to a Baltimore Oriole.
At first I thought I was going a bit nuts since I
had just had the Oriole feeder conversation within
the last hour.  But no, it really was a Baltimore 
Oriole ~ in my yard!
The only other time I have ever seen an Oriole was
back in June of 1996.  I wrote it down in my birding 
book.  We had friends that lived about 30 minutes 
from us and Orioles spent the summer on their 

Mr. Oriole was thirsty and stopped for a 
drink in the birdbath by the lilac.

Someone is saying stop hogging the feeder
Mr. Cardinal!

There were five Baltimore Orioles all together
though I could only get three of them in the
picture at one time.
I called my sister and she could see them from 
her deck, after they flew into the woods, my sister
got her bird song book and we kept playing the
call for the Oriole and they would answer back.
It was so much fun!

I have definitely taken this as a sign that this 
Summer is perfect for the Summer of Home...

Thursday, May 1, 2014

Three's A Charm

I was thrilled to have my block included in
Quiltmaker's 100 Blocks, Vol.9.

It was extra exciting to see my quilt using the block 
had been included in the Designer's Gallery.

But it wasn't until I had a chance to sit down and
savor all of the magazine that I discovered my block
 had been used in a quilt in the Block Tester's Gallery.
What fun!  Look for it on page 90!