Monday, July 5, 2010

The Koehler Bakery

This is my Grandpa, Ed Koehler. In 1921, when he was 21 years old and newly married (I was born on the same day they were wed -- many years later of course), his Dad help set him up in this bakery. He and his family lived in the second story apartment upstairs from the bakery. My Mom was only two years old at the time and her older sister was three. Grandpa did most of the baking and would load up his truck with bakery items then make his way to rural farms to deliver his goods to people who didn't get into town much. In 1928 Ed and his wife Erna (my grandma) added their third daughter to the growing family. In the next year our country experienced the collapse of it's economy in the Great Depression. Berlin Wisconsin was no exception to the ravages of the Great Depression and one of the main businesses in town, a shoe factory where many women worked, went out of business. These women and others who were suffering with the down turned economy went back to making their own bread so business was slow in my Grandpa's bakery. According to family lore, one of Ed's employees was unscrupulously stealing sugar from the bakery to use in his still to make moonshine. To make things worse, soft hearted and charitable Ed issued credit to people who couldn't pay for his bread and eventually he couldn't pay his own bills. So in Sept 1929 he sold his bakery and moved in with his in-laws with his family of five. Ed used the proceeds from the sale of his bakery to keep my Great Grandparents from loosing their farm. He went to work in Milwaukee, 82 miles away, where many of his seven brothers and half brothers worked until he was able to get a job with Skelly Oil Company and move his family to Weyauwega. I love him for his loving and giving character.

Have you looked into your family tree? You should! It's a lot of fun and very interesting.

Sunday, July 4, 2010

The Fourth on the 4th

Church was very nice this morning - the choir sang the first and this, the fourth verse of our national anthem. Isn't it nice? Maybe this is where the saying "In God we Trust" on our coins came from.

O! thus be it ever, when freemen shall stand
Between their loved home and the war's desolation!
Blest with victory and peace, may the heav'n rescued land
Praise the Power that hath made and preserved us a nation.
Then conquer we must, when our cause it is just,
And this be our motto: "In God is our trust."
And the star-spangled banner in triumph shall wave
O'er the land of the free and the home of the brave!

Saturday, July 3, 2010

Trying my hand at ...

... Brazilian Embroidery. Deepa is helping me to learn Brazilian Embroidery! So far I'm really enjoying it. Here I have tried some leaves, the stem stitch and french knots. You can see Deepa's blog here: . She has worked up a lovely peacock that I hope to try one day.

I have tried Brazilian embroidery once before up in Denver as part of CQI's first retreat in 2008 but didn't get very far -- story of my life!

I have a limited color selection in rayon threads so I don't exactly have matching colors in my branches, but at least they are all green. (- ; However, I was at an estate sale recently and found a plastic container full of Edmar threads - God is good! I've been working on bullions today -- my worst subject so I'll be needing a lot of practice.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Famous, at last

Ha ha! I have been blogged about! I once answered an ad to pick up some mosaic glass and was surprised to find out that it was my neighbor right down at the end of the street who was offering it. LOL! We had a nice visit, found we had some common interests, and then went on our merry but separate ways for about a year. Over the course of the year we ended up meeting at various places on the internet - she found my blog - I found hers - she's on Facebook as am I, I found her Etsy shop, etc. Eventually we decided to make some local shopping excursions together and now have become friends. She was nice enough to help me figure out Etsy the other day. So, here I am blogging about her blogging about me! She has a great blog ( and two Etsy shops ( and ( so be sure to check her out!

LA Fashion District

When I was in California, I met up with Ingrid whom I met at the CQI retreat last year (CQI is the Crazy Quilt International Yahoo Group). We went to downtown LA to visit the renowned (at least to some crazy quilter enthusiasts) Fashion District. I just thought I'd share some photos of this shopping district. I didn't have my camera (thought I'd have enough trouble carrying my purchases), but Ingrid graciously let me use hers. There are, seriously, store after store after store in block after block of fabric, beads, lace, and trims. You could take a week to go through them all if your budget could withstand it. We only had a day and so missed many of the shops, but one day I'll return!