Thursday, October 8, 2015

Dr. Who and the Tartis Quilt

Dr. Who collectables scatter my godson's bedroom and Tartis comments pepper his conversation on a regular basis.  I've never seen an entire episode (Shh, don't tell!) but-- I can assure you, Godson has seen them ALL and he and his friends LOVE the show.

Over the years I've searched far and wide for Dr. Who collectibles and treats, picking them up in my travels and hoping it's something he doesn't already have.

This year, I'm pretty sure his upcoming birthday will make me a bit of a hero, if I do say so myself.

This is what I made for him...

(It took a while to put together using the Relatively Dimensional quilt pattern by Hunter's Design Studio.  I made the border slightly larger using Quilter's Linen Metallic-- the solids are Kona Cotton. All are from my favorite fabric store-- Sew Modern in Los Angeles.)

While working on the quilt, I tried to subtly drill Godson about specifics on the Tartis so I could quilt it as "real" as possible.  That process was a bit like pulling teeth but in the end, I figured out enough to give it a go...

Late in the game I learned there is some sort of round seal so I winged it to give the very basic "idea" of where it belongs.

Spoonflower was my source for the printed panels.  Info for that was included in the pattern.

I'll give the quilt wrapped with popcorn and all the goodies to go with an evening of Dr. Who binge watching with his friends.

The quilt has been washed so it's super soft and crinkly, which I love.  And it'll get even better with each washing.

Happy Birthday to my favorite Dr. Who fan!

Welcome to  -  Joanna Jenkins

Thursday, September 24, 2015


Is it me or is it crazy to think we actually need a Bike Valet Parker at the mall?

Life in Los Angeles just got a little odder.

Welcome to  -  Joanna Jenkins

Monday, September 21, 2015

Ah Poop!

There's a lot of it in our neighborhood these days...  Poop of all kinds.

We are "doing our part" to save water in drought stricken Southern California and removed our front lawn.  Gone is the lovely green grass that made me sneeze when it was mowed.  Gone are the pop-up sprinkler heads that my neighbor's rowdy boys would run over and break with their go karts.  Gone is the sprinkler timer that set off watering just in time for our morning newspapers to get drenched.

Gone.  Gone.  Gone.

In are eighty-seven flats (!) of drought tolerant ground cover.  Two days, four guys and three cases of Gatorade later, the plants were settled into their new beds in record-breaking high temperatures.

Oh, and a truck load of cow poop smelling fertilizer/mulch was distributed too.  The smell simmering on 95 degree days was nothing short of, um, "ripe".

I thought for sure my neighbors would complain about the stink because I most definitely did.  You could smell it a mile away.

So I turned to our community website site,  I told you about it when the 'hood went crazy over the Lemon Thief-- to see if any complaints were racking up.

There were poop complaints galore!!!  But not about my poop-smelling yard.

Apparently there is a dog poop REVOLT going on and, since I was working so hard in the yard, had totally missed the gigantic freakout online by what I once considered kind and friendly neighbors.

It started with a guy making a ballistic post over dog walkers putting their dog poop bags in his garbage cans kept on the side of his house directly next to the sidewalk.  His point was that folks should take their poop bags to their own garbage cans for disposal because, apparently, other people's dog poop smells worse than his dog's poop.

That had one woman chiming in that her dog's poop definitely does not smell worse than any other and called the guy a few choice words which will not be repeated.  And then all hell broke loose!

Many, many people-- with and without dogs, screamed in all capital letters that garbage cans are city property and available for everyone to use.  That comment brought out City ordinance code postings and several attorneys pointing out in legal language that homeowners "rent" the cans from the City and are therefore our property as well as going on and on stating trespassing laws.

My favorite was the comment by a woman who suggested "poop cans" be installed around the area for the poop bags-- But NOT on her property since she's a self-proclaimed "crazy cat lady".

When I say this was a heated debate that had neighbors on their computers banging out hateful, nasty, and some very funny comments, I mean 279 comments and counting in just five days!  Long winded, rambling comments--  "How dare you!" comments--  Emojis the likes of which I've never seen--  Dog lovers (and a few haters) at odds with each others and neighbors nearly coming to blows.  Literally.

It reached full-fledged "holy crap" status in no time!

Poop bag offenders were called out by name along with their addresses (!) so people could return their poop to them.   A few people even followed offending poop-bag-garbage-can-dumpers to their homes to return said poop placing it under door mats and on car windshields.

And for the nasty people who don't bother to pick up their dog's poop at all--  Apparently there is a special place in hell waiting for them. Who knew?

Needless to say, I do not keep my garbage cans in view of the street nor do I have a pooping dog which may be why I find this heated online debate so over the top... and a bit scary.

I did breath a sigh of relief that my smelly yard did not become a topic of conversation on the website.

But I'm waiting... because a "drought tolerant" yard does not mean it never gets watered.  Oh no, no, no!  In fact, it gets watered A LOT until it's established and more than a few neighbors forty dog walkers have scolded me about it when I hand water our lawn twice a week-- even when I'm using water from a big hot pink watering can filled with reclaimed water from the bath tub.

Yup, there's a reason I don't attend our community's Block Party.


Welcome to  -  Joanna Jenkins

Friday, July 24, 2015

Changing Times

Our neighborhood could be described as "charming", "family-oriented", "tree-lined" and, perhaps even "old".  At least that's how I look at it and love it.  It's what drew us to this 'hood in the first place.

But all that's changing thanks to "McMansions".

I do not love it.

My favorite home in the area recently bit the dust to a developer's plan for "progress towards the future".

Here it is...  Gorgeous, beautifully maintained and in pristine condition-- literally move-in ready-- all 3,000 square feet of it.  Problem is that this beauty, although on a shallow lot, is located on a double wide lot and that made it a developers dream.

First a "Notice" of demolition was posted and then, way too shortly thereafter, this started...

After that it was hard even walk down the street anymore.

The sad ending is that two, count 'em TWO 5,000 square foot houses will be built on the lot in it's place.  Two monster houses in the place of one lovely home.

This isn't the first sad story like this in our community-- it's actually being written about in the newspapers and talked about on the television and radio news all the time.  But developers have deep pockets and it appears, at least so far, nothing "legally" can be done to minimize the overbuilding of lots.

I totally get "progress" and an owner's right to do with their home/property what they want to-- really, I get it.  But I don't get the pile of rubble that once was a perfectly good home that's now in a landfill somewhere.

Or maybe I'm just really sad that the landscape of our neighborhood is changing-- literally.

Is this happening in your neighborhood?

Welcome to  -  Joanna Jenkins

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Scream and Shout!

 Call it an "In Case of Emergency" photo...

This picture was taken yesterday at the Ringling Bros. Circus with my godson.  It was a total blast! 

I'm saving it for a day when I really need to let loose and have a good rant-- like today when my contractor waterproofed and sealed my patio in the wrong color.

Yep, I'm going to need to scream!

Welcome to  -  Joanna Jenkins

Sunday, June 21, 2015

So This Happened

Much joy has been spread around my world of late--  I feel really blessed to be part of our great, big, amazing family.

We had not one for FOUR graduations... My oldest nephew earned his Master's Degree from Clemson, my youngest nephew graduated from high school, my niece earned her Bachelor's Degree from Ohio State and we officially have our first Doctor in the family, also from OSU!

These two pretties participated in graduation at 
The Ohio State University.

This "Roll With It" Quilt was a graduation gift 
for the Bachelor's Degree niece.

A couple of very sweet and very tiny kittens--
Olive and Scout, joined Godson's family.  

And these two cuties-- my great-nieces
celebrated their 4th and 5th birthdays together!

And today I'm remembering my dad who passed away nearly 22 years ago.  And I'm remembering my step-dad who passed 3 1/2 years ago.  Both great men who live on in our hearts always.

My dad with our new Doctor of Veterinary Medicine.

Happy Father's Day to all the dads out there!

How's your Sunday?

Welcome to

Friday, June 5, 2015

A Vacuum Cleaner Beating

It all started innocently enough--  Vacuum the house and then go for a much-needed walk on a warm Southern California day.  It's feels (and looks) like about a decade since I worked out and I figured the combo of vacuuming and walking was a good place to start and would count as weight training and cardio (That's only a little stretch of the imagination, right?).

But half way through the living room chore my trusty vacuum started wheezing-- just a little at first, but than it worked itself up into a high pitched screech that had the neighbor's dog wailing. 

I fussed and fiddle with the machine trying to make things right, but couldn't identify where the noise was actually coming from-- Not the hose, the bag or any one specific place.  Screaming at me, it was as if the entire vacuum was either in shock that I was dragging it around cleaning... Or it was on it's last leg.

Dang.  I really like this vacuum too.

Since the vacuum was still picking up dust, I kept pushing it along, praying the noise would stop, and cleaning from one room to the next, until the exhausting and nerve-wracking job was finally finished. 

By this time, I knew I had to take the machine in for repair and was giving myself a good talking to because I couldn't identify the source of the noise-- Translation:  Not paying attention when I pulled the plug out from the wall while at the same time stepping on the button that retracts the cord and winds it up inside the machine all nice and neat.

Well... like I said, it's been a while since I was the one doing the vacuuming around here and I'd forgotten about the crazy cord rewind.

Note to self:  Do not bend over, thereby putting your face too close to the machine when the cord is whipping towards you at the speed of light.

Faster than you can say "Mike Dyson", the plug and my face-- specifically my lip-- collided in a rather uncomfortable smack, just barely avoiding chipping a tooth, but definitely doing significant damage to my bottom lip.

Let's just say much blood followed and by the end of the day I looked like I'd gone a few rounds with an able-bodies contender.

But it was only the vacuum who beat me up-- The vacuum that was repaired waaay before my lip healed.  The vacuum that didn't dare wheeze or screech while I still had a fat lip.  The vacuum that taught me a valuable lesson-- not the least of which was that from now on, I'm letting someone else do the cleaning around here!

# # # # #

Gosh, I can't believe how long it's been since my last post!  All's well, I've just been really busy.  I have lots to share and promise to be back soon.

How are YOU?

Welcome to  -  Joanna Jenkins

Sunday, March 22, 2015

Happy, Calm and Um....

I didn't make any New Year's Resolutions for 2015 mainly because the thought of having one more thing on my "to-do" list was overwhelming. I was tired, stressed and worn down enough without feeling defeated for not accomplishing yet another goal.

A better attitude would definitely have been on my agenda if I'd made a resolution-- after all, the countless funerals I've attended in the past few years were more than my heart could stand and left me feeling stressed and sad.  Maybe that's why an emailed review request about a supplement called "Happy Calm Focused" caught my eye.

In all honesty, the super positive name and packaging had me rolling my eyes and laughing out loud at its claims.  It was early February and I'd already attended three MORE funerals of loved ones.  (I know!  When will it STOP!?!)  But if ever someone was in need of help being happy and calm it was definitely me.  So, after taking my head out of the oven I agreed to give the HCF supplement a try.  A free bottle arrived in my mailbox shortly thereafter.

Did I mention that I have never, ever, blindly tried a supplement before? Not once.  I called my doc who said it was okay to give one bottle a try to see if he helped.  Then I checked the mostly very positive HCF reviews online and popped the top.

The cobolt blue bottle made me happy-- I collect blue glass and even though this was plastic the coloring wasn't lost on me.

Could I have been momentarily happy before even swallowing the three substantial capsules that smelled a lot like herbs and the back of a pharmacy?  Probably not, but it made me smile nevertheless.  A good start, huh?

It's important to take HCF on an empty stomach 30 minutes before eating in the morning-- That had me watching the clock because I wake up starved and actually keep granola bars on my bedside table.  As the thirty minutes ticked by til food time, I could still taste that herb/pharmacy/ick smell and was less than calm waiting to eat something to squash the after-taste.

Was Happy Calm Focused really working on me?  Fast forward three weeks...

Two more very sad situations with loved ones later (Again I say-- When will it STOP!) and I have to admit that I'm taking things in stride which I translate to being more calm in a crisis.  Happy might be too strong a word to describe my emotional state these days but the noise in my head when tracking the drama that surrounds me is somewhat lower. Both good things.

As for focused-- I'm afraid that ship has sailed for me.  I haven't been laser focused in more years than I can remember and have actually forgotten where I put the Happy Calm Focused supplement bottle a few times.

Will I continue to take the HCF supplement after the bottle is empty? I'm not sure.  The biggest down side for me is the indigestion and "repeating" of the supplement throughout the day.  I'm not crazy about that.  This is not a side-effect I read about in online reviews so maybe it's just my "delicate" system.

Happy Calm Focused isn't a "miracle in a bottle", at least not for me. Rather, it's an amino acid based supplement that might have helped make me feel a little better.  Will it help you feel happier, more calm and focused?  You'll have to be the judge.

Available on

How are you feeling these days?
Welcome to - Joanna Jenkins