R Barbara Send Message

187 Posts | 139 Comments
Active Since 2009

I am a quilter, my profile photo (that’s me behind the quilt) shows a recent log cabin quilt I made for my sister, last year as a Christmas gift. I am also a gardener (make my own compost), sometimes cook, and jack of all trades.

I began working for ThriftyFun in December of 2008. My daughter Laurel, also a ThriftyFun staffer introduced me to the site. Currently I help moderate requests from our members. I love this job. I am able to work from home and get to see and learn from all of the yummy recipes, beautiful crafts, and useful tips shared by our members. One of my favorite aspects of the ThriftyFun site content is the varied posts dealing with recycling and reusing, whether it is in crafting, decorating or other daily uses.

My background is in education. I taught Anthropology part time for a Community College, in addition to supervising several campus programs. My several seasons of archaeological field work prepared me for the months of rock screening we did to make our personal gravel pit into a yard we can landscape. Not exactly pot sherds or points, but necessary for the flowers.

My husband, Bruce and I share our house with the rest of our pack, our dog Belle and Cali, the cat. We currently split our time between Oregon and Washington. In Washington we spend our time visiting with our daughter and two wonderful grandchildren. When in Oregon we, mostly Bruce, are in the throes of remodeling our 1946 Cape Cod. We have redone the plumbing, wiring, added insulation, etc. Our focus has been on improving the energy efficiency of this older home.

This year we finally were able to put in an eco-friendly alternative lawn. It is called Fleur de Lawn, and is a mix of micro clover, drought tolerant grasses, and some flowers. I am very excited about seeing it in its full glory this spring. I am working to increase my plantings of native and low water usage plants in our garden.

One of my favorite frugal gardening activities is to search the “half dead” discounted plants at the local nurseries and big box stores. I have had great success incorporating these bedraggled plants into my flower garden and watching them flourish.

Yo Yo Covered Papier-mâché Pumpkins - pumpkins on antique oak cabinet next to potted orchids

Yo Yo Covered Papier-mâché PumpkinsI started this project some time ago when I was completely enamored with making yo yos for all sorts of potential craft projects. I am sharing them now because the yo yos can be a bit time consuming to make, so it is best to begin this project early. Even though the fabric is quite Halloween themed, they can be used as a fall decoration and of course, can be made with any fabric choice.


Peeling Bark on a Madrone Tree - peeling bark on a madrone

Peeling Bark on a Madrone TreeTo me, one of the most interesting and striking characteristics of madrone trees is the beautiful mahogany colored bark which crazes and then flakes off year round exposing the underlying green bark which will turn brown, then orangish, and finally this deep hue before it sloughs again.


New Plantings and Garden Flowers - pink flowering mountain laurel

New Plantings and Garden FlowersLast year my grandson and I cut down several forsythia shrubs along the northern edge of the side yard. The stumps still need to dealt with. This year I have focused on planting two lilac bushes further into the yard to ultimately help reestablish a green border between my yard and my neighbor's. There will also be a native mock orange placed along this same line, soon.


Fabric Face Mask - two completed masks

Fabric Face MaskI found this pattern on the Kaiser Permanente website. It is for making a pleated style face mask. The photos are mine, but the instructions are based on their pattern. I have included Kaiser the link as well. The pattern is for a small/medium mask.


Non Pleated Child's Mask - child wearing the purple floral mask

Non Pleated Child's MaskThis easy to make mask is a great option for children. It is easy to put on and fits their face snuggly without gapping.


A Rose of Sharon in bloom.

Rose of Sharon Bloom (Hibiscus syriacus)My little Rose of Sharon plant got a slow start this season, but is now blooming again! I just had given it a drink right before taking this photo. I love the color of the flowers.


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