Tag Archives: sewing

Guest Writer Today

We have a guest blogger today. My wife Carol, aka TrailBoss, has agreed to write a post for today.

Hello Blog Friends.

Well, Jerry has been trying to get me involved in the blogging since he started it. He has completed the Blogging 101 course now and during that course he created a page for me—Carol’s Corner. So I guess it is time to start my blogging life. 🙂

I have been thinking about what to start with and have come up with a topic that I am sure many of you full-time quilters and sewers can relate to–how do you store ALL of that Thread???

My Li’l Sis, Donna, is coming to visit the end of February and I have asked her to take a storage box of my stuff to her house to keep for awhile. Therefore, I need to do some major rearranging in my Corner before she gets here. If you read J’s blog about Carol’s Corner you have an idea what my mess looks like at this time.

I have decided to start small. 😉 Below I have a picture of the amount of thread I have now. I have it all stored in a bottom drawer that I really need to use for something else.

Carols Threads

I currently keep it all in zip lock bags sort of by categories: embroidery threads (blues/greens/purples; reds/yellows/oranges; browns/beiges/tans; black & whites), hand threads, regular sewing threads, hand embroidery floss, pearl cottons. Well, you get the idea.

My question for y’all is:

What have you found to be the best way to store your threads, taking as little room as possible?

And yes, I know that I really need to thin the number I have and I plan to do that also. That’s really tough because I just might need one of them sometime. (sigh)

I would greatly appreciate some feedback from all of y’all, especially those of you who are RVers or live in small spaces. I have declared to myself that the next days we have off I will begin the major rearranging. However, as I said above I am now starting small.

I’m looking forward to hearing from y’all, thanks for stopping by.


Special thanks goes out to the TrailBoss. She gave my fingers a break. If you are not a quilter or sewer, please feel free to share this post with your friends who are. You can copy/paste this link http://waggintailsrv.com/2015/01/30/guest-writer-today/ for sharing.

Thanks for stopping by, y’all come back now.

Jerry Sig1

Carol’s Corner

Carol-WallerToday’s post is about my better side, the one who keeps me straight and is available to call 911 when I am climbing around on roofs. My wife Carol has been my better side for 47 years now. As I stated in my Who We Are page, I think I’ll keep her. Carol loves craft projects as long as they require the use of needle and thread. When we bought our first RV, we had one strict requirement.  we had to have space for Carol’s Corner.

100_0319Here we sit in our first home on wheels. May 4, 2011 we drove to Elk City, OK to complete the purchase of our 2008 Cedar Creek 38 foot fifth wheel. By the time we got it back to our house in Corpus Christi, TX we determined that this very uncomfortable couch would have to find a new home because that is where Carol’s Corner would go.

100_0485By October 2011, this is what the space looked like with the couch removed.


Then the pieces came in. I am sure glad I practiced the principle of measure twice and cut once as I squeezed the carcass through that narrow RV door. Carol was on the inside steering the carcass. We only had a couple of inches to spare. Once it was in and turned, it was easy to lay it down to position it in the space where the ugly and awful couch once resided.

100_0491With the top in place, it is beginning to look like a decent work area. The top is from a standard 6 foot long folding table similar to what is available at Home Depot, Lowes, CostCo, Sam’s or where ever you prefer to shop. For a closer look, click here to see the table Home Depot sells. I removed all metal legs and frame from the table. So all that is left is the light weight top.


Now Carol can begin to load up Carol’s Corner. Carol’s embroidery machine fits into the slot on the left when we travel and the roll out bins are turned around for travel so the drawers do not open.

IMG_0083We were in Blue Ridge, GA workamping at Windy Valley Llamas during the summer of 2012. Carol is deep in thought about the project she is working on. You can tell from this photo that we moved Carol’s Corner to the rear of the fifth wheel. It only made sense because it gave her a bit more floor space and much better natural lighting.

DSCN0041Carol’s Corner was doing just fine until on a whim, we decided to trade the Cedar Creek fifth wheel in on a 38 foot 2004 Winnebago motor home. The only way the deal could work is if we had space for Carol’s Corner. As you can see, the bedroom had this nice little sitting area. As with most RV furniture, we decided the uncomfortable chairs had to go. This is where Carol’s Corner would find a home.

We had fun squeezing the carcass into the motor home door. We did determine the magic number for RV doors is 28″. The 8 foot width of the motor home is the same as the 8 foot width of the fifth wheel. That made it easy for everything to fit just fine.

IMG_2117Carol is happy as a queen working away in Carol’s Corner. Her small ironing board is on the left, The red case on the left is her embroidery machine’s embroidery arm. She even has a scrap bag just to her right. Under the TV is her DVD player so she can catch her favorite movies while stitching away. On the right you can see her Ott light. It has seen better days. It got caught in the bedroom slide one day as we were setting up the motor home. Now we pay attention to where it is when we close everything up for travel. The crutches — we won’t go there.

IMG_2115When you have a sophisticated high-tech embroidery machine you always need a back up. She recently discovered that the feed dog on the embroidery machine will not come up to operate as it should. While in embroidery mode, the feed dog drops since the embroidery arm moves the fabric every which way. Carol’s backup machine also works well when she is going to a sewing class.

IMG_2196I know the one question you are thinking – “Where does Carol keep her fabric stash?” Well, the fabric stash is under the bed. To be a happy RVer, you must be use all available space where ever it is found. I have my tools outside in compartment under the motor home, Carol has her stash under the bed.

The only problem with Carol’s Corner is she cannot be working on projects while I am kicked back in my recliner writing blogs. We were together in the fifth wheel but in the motor home, we are in separate rooms. The other problem is if Carol wants to work on a project and I want to go to bed, I get the recliner while she sews away. It works for us

IMG_2110I am sure you can figure out what this is. We call it the birth of a new project. Carol’s Corner will be busy for a while.

Hope you enjoyed the tour. Thanks for stopping by, y’all come back now.


R&R and MoHo Mods

Our last work day at Lone Star Yogi in Waller, Tx was Tuesday 8/12. We took a couple of days to get packed up and to get a hitch installed on or Ford Edge. Friday morning 8/15, we pulled out and said Good Bye! to Yogi Bear. Our first stop was my brother’s place in Burton, TX for a few days R&R and to get our dining room cabinet finished and moved into the RV. The cabinet project started off as a standard 60″x24″ sink cabinet from Lowe’s. That was too deep for our need so I reduced the depth of the cabinet to fit our space.

Then I had to cut a slot in the faux drawer in the center of the cabinet for our table to slide into the cabinet. Plus reconfigure the two side drawers to fit the 16″ depth. Add a top and place a trim edge that would keep stuff from rolling off when we are on the road. And add a shelf on the inside.

My brother helped me get it into the motor home. After removing the day/night shades and crappy valances, here is where she stood when we left Burton.

I still have to alter the legs on the table and hang new roller shades and curtains on the windows.

Monday AM we pulled away from  Burton and headed for Corpus Christi. We stopped in Schulenberg for lunch and fuel. As we approached Corpus Christi, we encountered strong southerly winds and a little rain. Fueled up again in Corpus Christi so we would not need to do that when we leave in a week. We pulled into Colonia Del Rey and got our assigned space. No shade here so it will be hot in the afternoon. Our daughter planned supper for us, so as soon as we got set up, we headed to her apartment.

Tuesday we spent the day with our grandson, Gage. This was his last day of summer vacation. Carol washed clothes while Gage and I played a couple of board games. He and I made a couple of trips back to the RV park so we could walk our fur babies, Cody and MeiLing. After a great TexMex meal at Acapulco. Next, Carol and I headed to Lowe’s to get the new roller shades.

Wednesday after breakfast, I got worked on installing the new shades. It took a little trial and error but they work fine. There are two different roller shade hanging brackets. The ones in front are standard and place the center of the roller about 1″ away from the wall. The ones in the back place the center of the roller about 1.5″ away from the wall.  Unless you have them made, most roller shades come in standard 74″ length. Big box stores (Lowe’s, Home Depot, Menard’s, etc.) can cut the roller shades to width. We opted to go that route instead of custom ordering for width and length. We had to get longer brackets to keep the shades from dragging on the RV’s window frames. We also opted to get the room darkening shades instead of those that let in a little light. They really make a difference on blocking heat.  The day/night shades we had sorta work but not as well as the shades we installed.

Carol made curtains for the windows last summer when we where at Mark Twain Landing in Monroe City, MO. We are using standard curtain rods. This makes mounting a little tricky because the rods are mounted close to the overhead cabinets.

Here is the final photo of the cabinet in place with new legs to support the table and the new curtains. Sometimes it is the little thing that make a drab RV feel more like home.

We are still thinking through the process of replacing the carpet with laminate flooring. Until we do this, we still need to vacuum the carpet. Our 3-year-old trusty Dirt Devil finally broke down. We wanted something like the Dyson Canister but could not see spending almost $500 for a vacuum. So we went to Walmart and got a Shark Navigator instead at 1/3 the cost. I vacuumed the carpet 3. First pass got all the dog hair from Cody, second and third pass got the dust/dirt that was in the carpet. I can honestly say the Shark really sucks – in a good way. And it is easy to empty and clean the canister.

While on the subject of RV mods, we purchased a solar screen for our windshield. We have seen many motor homes with these solar screens and decide if we were going to survive Texas heat in August, we need one. The solar screen blocks the sun and allows us to still see out. RV Sunscreen out of Winter Haven, Florida make these shades along with other products for RVs. They come in all sizes and color configurations. Plus they ship fast. We got our just before leaving Lone Star Yogi in Waller. We will order some for our side windows when we get settled.


Meanwhile, thanks for stopping by – y’all come back now.


WHOA! What Happened To August?

Somehow, I lost a month? Yep, no blog entry for August. How did that happen? Better yet, what happened in August? Best way for me to figure out what happened is to check the photo log.


We went to Paris. That’s right, we took a trip to Paris. No not Paris, France – Paris, Missouri. Paris is a small, quaint town a few miles down the road from us. The city’s website calls Paris a throwback to a bygone era: people live in harmony; kids are free to be kids; elderly are treated with respect; and no one is afraid to take a walk in the evening.

DSC_0585We enjoyed breakfast at Jonsey’s Cafe.

IMG_1096Even bought a truck for my brother. He collects Texaco memorabilia so if you run across something in your travels, please let me know.

New Furniture

We decide to replace the very uncomfortable couch bed that came with our RV with a couple of recliners. There just is not any single piece of furniture that fits us just right. Our recliners were delivered on August 6th. Since the width of the space where the recliners go is tight, we opted to order motorized recliners. This makes it easier to choose a reclining position without the need to reach between the recliners to pull a lever. Why did we wait so long to do this? Our next improvement will be to get rid of the booth style dining table. That will be replaced with a storage credenza and some sort of bistro table or dining bar.


We started the month with some pretty cool weather. Lows in the 50’s with highs in the 70’s. Not to be left out of the heat, Mother Nature brought us about four days of heat with highs in the low 100’s. Thankfully the humidity was low so the heat was tolerable.

Awning Repair

Before we arrived here, our awning arms were broken in a freak gust of wind. I replaced the arms back in June but did not tension the springs. It was time to do that so we could roll the awning up. It was not difficult other than removing the safety cotter pin after the spring had the correct amount of tension. Once that was removed, everything worked as expected.


Of course, there was plenty of work to do around the park. More electrical work and other stuff kept me pretty busy.

elec Service Panel-cutoffSewing

Carol had to opportunity to crank up the sewing projects she had not been able to work on this summer. She was in her zone in the club house where she was able to spread out a bit.

Carol SewingAfter all that work, it was time for a break – ‘feet off the floor time’ for me and nap time for MeiLing. Cody just sprawled out on the floor.

RestingFall is in the air as is evident from the leaves falling on the ground.

IMG_1143I leave you with this parting shot of our ‘catch and release’ fishing hole.

IMG_1100Thanks for stopping by. Y’all come back now.

Our Weekend

This weekend, Carol drove to San Antonio to spend some sister time and to participate in a sewing class at Grome’s with her sister Donna. While she was gone, I tended shop on the ranch.

My Friday morning chores included feeding the cows and burning trash. Tree trimming will come later in the day. First item on my list today is feed the cows.

Weekend 1

Hay rounds, weighing about 1,000 lbs. each, are stored in the barn in stacks of two. First step is to get the round on it’s side. This is done by raising the tractor’s bucket above the round, and then move tractor forward so the bucket is centered above the round.  Rotate the bucket so the blade points downward, then lower the bucket into the mid-point on top of the round until the blade is pressed a couple of inches into the round. Slowly move tractor back until round tips over. Notice the chain in the third photo? It is hanging from the top edge of the bucket. Next step is to rotate the bucket so the blade is pointing straight down. Move tractor forward until the chain is on the far side of the round. Lower the bucket until the blade is just touching the top of the round – the chain should now be hanging behind the round. Move tractor backward until the blade clears the near end of the round. Next, lower the bucket until the blade is below the center point of the round. Rotate the bucket upward. This will remove the slack from the chain and lift the round. Last photo on the right shows success.

Weekend 2

The girls were waiting for me. A nylon mesh that is tightly wrapped around the hay has to be removed before the hay can be set into the feeder. While round is suspended, the mesh is cut loose. The mesh is then tied to the end of the chain so when the round is placed in the feeder, raising the bucket should pull the mesh off the round (photo 2). The girls were happy and are feasting.

We recycle plastic bottles, glass, steel and aluminum. Food scrap that did came from the ground is recycled in the pasture. The rest of household trash is burned. While I’m watching the burning trash, the girls are still feasting.

Carol made it to San Antonio after stopping in Giddings for an oil change. That only took two hours. Where is a Quick Lube when you need them. She and Donna spend Friday afternoon shopping for jeans to recycle for class. After a girl dinner, they crashed since they needed their rest for the class on Saturday.

Diane Lamb gave them an introduction on recycling sweatshirts. The idea is to start with a standard boring sweatshirt. Then embellish it by adding recycled jeans or any other discarded clothing item to it. Here are some examples of what the class produced.

Weekend 3

When Carol finishes her sweatshirt, I’ll have her model it for the blog. Meanwhile feel free to leave a comment if you want Carol to contact you about this project.

After 4 hours of cutting, sewing and doing with sewers do when they get together, class was over and it was time for Carol to head back to the ranch. Other than a missed turn just outside of San Marcos, Carol’s trip was uneventful.

While Carol was sewing with her sister, I decided to do a little target practice. Knowing Carol and I are going to test for our CHL in February, practicing makes sense. My targets are a bit crude but they serve the purpose. The target on the left was 10 yards away and the target on the right was just shy of 20 yards away. Five single shots into each target (16″ x 20″). Looks like I did OK.

targetThat’s it for our weekend on the Carl Wendler Ranch.


Thanks for stopping by. Y’all come back now.