Wednesday, December 25, 2013


I am in Holiday mode.  For the remainder of the year, I am hoping to be laid back and enjoying time with Family and Friends.  Have a wonderful holiday season.
Holding a baby is one of my favorite things in life.
So small, so trusting, so fragile they are. Jesus came to
us in this form -as a baby.
Are you willing to hold the Christ Child in your heart?
Comments are welcomed. I will reply when possible unless otherwise stated.

Sunday, December 22, 2013

More Stitched Gifts and Play Time

I made several embroidered towels for Christmas presents for friends.  I used this angel design set that you have seen some of previously.
The brown ones are for a co-worker who is struggling with a medical issue.
 Looking at the close-up you can see that the angel is a lovely sketched looking design.  I adore the effect that these make.

The green ones were for a friend that we often meet at one of our favorite Mexican restaurants to have supper with on a Friday night.  Seriously, we first meet IN the restaurant. I think some things are just meant to be.

Saturday morning I did some playing with my wonky 9-patch blocks. I made a few more and then did a sample layout.
The two blocks at the bottom, while I love them, they don't speak the same language.  So they will either go in another quilt or maybe on the back of this one.  Looking at the upper left I can see how much fun this would be using one fabric in every block and many other fabrics for the secondary color. For these  blocks you start with two squares and layer them to cut. By using one fabric consistently for ONE of the colors, all of the others would appear to be scattered over the quilt top.  I will put that on my "I wanna make" list. Ha ha.  I will never finish everything on that list unless I live a very long life.
Do you have one of those lists?

Comments are welcomed. I will reply when possible unless otherwise stated.

Saturday, December 21, 2013

Another Quilt Angel Thank You

Another Quilt Angel Thank You

This is a brief thank you from a young lady that received a quilt sent by one of the Quilt Angels.

And Ms. Jean, one of the staff -I like to call her a House Mother - also says Thank you.

You can see why I think of her as a "House Mother" - she calls them "my kids" and she truly means it.  I love seeing her firm but gentle with they kids. If I were one of them I would have no doubt that she loved me. I am sure that being with her and the rest of the staff, knowing that type of love, changes these kids for the better.
Don't you love the quilts she is holding in the video?  All of the quilts were and are amazing. I say special Thank  You to all the quilt angels and sponsors for helping to wrap these kids in a tangible expression of unconditional love.  Peace be with you!

Tomorrow, I plan to show some more presents that I worked crafty "magic" on and gave to friends and co-workers.  Be sure and stop by.

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

In Progress

My scarf is still on the loom.  I have had other things that I had to do - it is that time of year isn't it?

I took this from this seemingly odd angle so that you can see the cloth(scarf) wrapping around the cloth rod. That shows that I have made progress. (although not nearly enough.)

I also embroidered some towels to give as inexpensive gifts.  The simply do not photograph well.  But here are the pictures, such as they are.

The brown ones photgraphed much better.  The one on the left has "white spots" showing.  That is a bit of leftover shine from the water soluble topping I used. I didn't have the iron-away type which is best for gifts as you don't have to wet the towels.  I did not wash them, but just sponged away the leftover topping. Those white spots show that I didn't get it all.  I must say that I like these sewn out on towels that don't have a pile on the surface. The delicate stitching on the background angels is much prettier on smooth fabric.  Lesson learned.

I just got a huge surprise!  I was looking at my youtube channel and I have 525 subscribers.  WOW! That may be more than follow my blog. That has made me smile and do a happy dance.

I hope your projects are moving along or perhaps you are finished -if so, I congratulate you.

Comments are welcomed. I will reply when possible unless otherwise stated.

Monday, December 16, 2013

Quilt Angels - A Teen Speaks

We did a couple of videos of recipients saying why they like the quilt they received. I really thought that I had already uploaded two of these - but one of them is missing. (Sigh) So it will be next weekend before I can get it from the photographer.  Only two of them were willing to talk on camera. Again, for privacy issues there are no faces shown.

Here is one of the guys telling why he chose this quilt.
I had to edit the video to remove his face so you don't hear him say "thank you" But I think with what he says you can tell he is grateful.

There is a funny story behind this.  The executive director was telling me that the teens were asked to make a list of things they would want for Christmas.  My church had an Angel Tree where you could pick an angel and buy for them from these lists.  None of the items were extravagant.  I saw things like "a watch" "new socks" "Axe cologne" (hey, they are teenagers).  On one guy's list he put "anything to do with fishing." (I am using Joe to protect privacy, it is not his real name.)  When the quilts were put on the table, another guy saw this quilt and picked it up.  I said "Who is the fishing guy?"  He grinned and said "that is Joe.   Hey, where is Joe"  Then he handed him the quilt and said "Look at this one"  Joe took the quilt and said "This is the one I want!"
Now who would have thought that we would have had a fishing quilt, just for this guy?

Comments are welcomed. I will reply when possible unless otherwise stated.

Sunday, December 15, 2013

Angel Quilts - Delivery and Winners

Saturday, December 14th dawned rainy and dreary. The weather forecast said that we should have sun by afternoon. That didn't happen. The weather was dreary all day long.  But, we had sunshine! It was in our hearts and on our faces, but most of all on faces of the teens at Ogden house. I wish I could share their smiles with you, but that is prohibited. So, trust me, there were smiles!

Thanks to a group of amazing quilters from many places, we had 26 quilts donated. It was a delight to unload the trunk of the car at the facility. We put the quilts on the pool table in the common are of the facility and let the teens choose the quilt that said "love" to them.
One quilt wasn't even unfolded before it was chosen.  The young lady saw it and said "I want that one" The sender had included a note to be given with the quilt.  This was priceless.  The note said that the quilt was for someone special. I heard this young lady proudly telling the others "I am special." She also showed the note to everyone.  Everyone needs a chance to be special. I hope that all of these kids know that they are special, indeed, that they are loved. Many of them checked to see "where did my quilt come from?"
One young lady chose her quilt for the backing fabric. That was a surprise to me, but I was so pleased to see that it made her happy.  (you will hear her tell why in the days to come.)
The staff at the facility that were working, Jean and Eric, are wonderful people. You will see Ms. Jean in the prize drawing video.  Several times she almost teared up looking at the quilts and talking about "her kids" at the facility.

So what did it look like around that table?  I had to crop the pictures to get rid of faces, but here is a bit to see.
Everyone was looking at the quilts, The quilts were folded, unfolded and refolded several times.

Even Mr. Eric was looking at the quilts. He commented that they are really art. You can see his arm in the picture below. 
I have a couple of videos of individual teens saying "Thank you" and telling why they love the quilt they chose. We filmed them from the neck down for privacy reasons.  Those will show up in a day or two. I still need to process that video.
So, or should I say SEW,  here are the winners:

All of the winners have been emailed and I have heard back from most of them. There are two that I am still arranging the logistics of the prize claiming.

Thanks to everyone! And Merry Christmas to you all! 
Comments are welcomed. I will reply when possible unless otherwise stated.

Saturday, December 14, 2013


Yes, that is what I said "Ooops!"

I made Christmas presents for some co-workers, but I forgot to take pictures. I thought of it as I was tying the bow on the last package. (great timing, huh?)

So I decided that I would take pictures when they opened the packages. And that would have worked, but OOPS!   I knew my niece was going to have a minor surgery, it was scheduled at 6:30 a.m.  I planned to be there then go to work. It was rescheduled to 5:30 (ugh, have to get up awfully early, but better for getting to work)  I was there at 5:30.  I had the presents in my car trunk.  Perfect, right?
OOPS!  When I left, just in time to get to work, she was still in holding and waiting to be taken back. So I told her hubby to "let me know when she goes back..." etc.  

I got to work and chaos had ensued.  The night before my boss had been called into an investigation and it had blown up into a major thing. Presents were opened quickly when we had a break - but OOPS, I was in work mode and forgot all about pictures.

So I will share it this way. I took bought kitchen towels and used my embroidery machine. As I had five gifts to give I chose the designs. But when I sewed out the first one, I decided to make at least one more of it.
That was this design
It sewed out simply lovely.  So I did another but used a variegated green and yellow thread.
Then I did this design on one, but I did two snowflakes,  I wanted three but only two would fit in the hoop..
Next up was this angel
I used a gold for the larger angel and medium blue for the smaller angel.  And I did two of them with the smaller angels facing.
Next I used this angel
I used a gray thread that looked like pencil sketching for the angel and a bright red for the dove design. I put two of them and had the doves facing.   this was my favorite.

All of the designs came from Embroidery Library.  It is my "go to" place for embroidery designs in a hurry. All of these were already purchased.  But my favorite thing is that you can sign in and see your order history and download your design again. (so great if your computer dies and you have lost your designs!)

I also made an owl potholder for one of the girls. But that is a private joke!

Comments are welcomed. I will reply when possible unless otherwise stated.

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Sale Alert

But first another picture of a couple of my paintings. First- one for Pat, who doesn't like abstract painting.
The Old Yellow Car was a Christmas present to one of my nephews.

Then an abstract - but it isn't hard to see that it is a mountain scene.  Maybe Pat will like this one too.
This was sold to a dear friend in Tennessee. 

Now, about that sale.....

I thought that some of my faithful readers might like to know about the Craftsy Flash sale this weekend.  Whether you buy as gifts for others OR as gifts for yourself (because you are worth it) This looks promising.  Shop early for the best selection.

Still haven't found the perfect present for the crafter in your life? Stuff their stockings with fabric and yarn from Craftsy! From Friday, December 13 - Monday, December 16, designer yarn is on sale up to 80% off and designer fabric is up to 65% off. Order by 12/16 to guarantee delivery by 12/24...sorry, this is only for US residents. Hurry over to Craftsy! This sale expires on 12/16 at midnight MT.

Craftsy 80% Off Yarn Flash Sale through 12/16
Craftsy 65% Off Fabric Flash Sale through 12/16

Comments are welcomed. I will reply when possible unless otherwise stated.

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

What do you do?

I am making Christmas presents and some of the people that will get them read my blog. What do you do?
Perhaps I should share a Christmas scene I painted one year.

There, at least you know I wasn't eaten by wild hogs.

Comments are welcomed. I will reply when possible unless otherwise stated.

Sunday, December 08, 2013

More Wonky Blocks and a New Scarf on the Loom

This time of year there is a lot going on and I don't seem to be getting a lot of creative work done. That is okay as my life is full and happy.
At least on the weekend I can get a little sewing and such done.

I worked on the Wonky 9 patch project again.  As you can see, I did two pairs of blocks. I am striving to have lots of contrast in this quilt.  I also experimented with the cutting. I did the two blocks on the bottom first.  These were using the same "pattern" of cutting that I used for the previous blocks.  Then I made the purple/yellow blocks and made the lines parallel instead of opposing.  You will notice that the opposing line blocks will join in a true mirror image of shapes.  This is not so with the parallel lines version. Perhaps one of you who studied geometry (and did better at it than I did) can explain why to me.  Actually, I see why but I can't explain it well. - Maybe it is just too early on Sunday morning!

I also put a warp on the loom to make another scarf. I just love the weaving process.  It  is also fun to create the patterns. This is a plain weave (so far ) But I just had an idea of how to incorporate a small amount of Brooks Bouquet lace into it.
When I was stringing (warping) the loom for this, I had written out the order of the colors but I decided to change something so it was a bit "scribbledy" so I didn't do what I really planned.  That led to a creative decision in the warping process.  Do you ever realize you made an oops and then just decide to punt and leave it?  Sometimes I undo and fix it, but sometimes it leads to a better idea.
Now,  let me point out an "unfixable" oops in this.  It is minor so I am leaving it. At the lower right edge of the scarf there is a wobble in my tension - the cloth juts in slightly.  In the grand scheme of things, that will not matter, so I am good with it.

One of my favorite children's books, A Wrinkle in Time, has a scene that speaks to accepting your flaws.  One of the characters, who is a cosmic helper of sorts, tells her "Meg, I give you your faults" - Meg doesn't understand at the time, but learns that her very worst faults can be channeled and used as strengths.  So, I leave you with this: "I give you your faults"

Peace be with you.

Comments are welcomed. I will reply when possible unless otherwise stated.

Wednesday, December 04, 2013

More Blocks and a Scarf

My goodness, I have gotten so involved in my life that I have forgotten to post anything lately.

In my last post I showed you a couple of blocks that I had made in a wonky 9 patch style.  Since they are stack and cut, you use two fabrics a little larger than the blocks and get two blocks.
I did two more of those before I put it aside to weave a scarf for a commission.

The top two in red and white look great.  But what happened to the bottom pair????  I know! Sigh.  After cutting and sewing the first seam, I didn't stack them back the same way. Obviously they were twisted rather than being in the same orientation.  I am calling those two ultra-wonky 9 patches. Ha ha. The will go right on into the quilt and it will be fine. If I were doing the entire quilt in two colors this would ruin the pattern, but since it is a more scrappy quilt - it will be just fine.

The scarf is still attached to the loom at one end. This is the end where the warp is tied onto the take-up rod.  Those big bow knots hold the tension evenly.
The black is a "header" to evenly space the warp
It doesn't remain in the final scarf.
This lovely yarn is Peruvian Highland Wool.  The wool comes from sheep that are a cross between Merino (with a soft fine wool) and Corriedale (with a strong long fibered wool.)  It is a great yarn to work with.
The pattern I used was of my own design. One of the "tricks" with weaving matching stripes is to measure your weaving. I kept a tape measure right with me as I was weaving.  I knew how long I planned for the warp so I sat down and planned the pattern.  I didn't want too many color changes in the weft.  But I did want the scarf to be interesting to look at.

All the measuring paid off!  The sections match. Here are some pictures to show it.

When you weave a dark and light yarn together, it produces a lovely tweed effect.  You can see that really well where the darkest and lightest threads cross.  And when the warp and weft match in color the somewhat expected result is a nice solid color.  That dark purple in the lower picture shoew this well.

I need to finish off this scarf and get it on the way to its new home.  I also have some little presents I need to make for a few co-workers.  (wink! I got a pattern for them from another blogger. )

It is rare that I don't have some project going.  I am even planning to take the small loom with me to the beach when we go to visit the Nana.

Comments are welcomed. I will reply when possible unless otherwise stated.

Saturday, November 30, 2013

Life After the Holiday

First of all, I must say that I had a delightful Thanksgiving holiday at my Mother's house. My brother and some of his family were there.  My aunt and uncle and their youngest daughter were there along with my niece and her two girls. Oh yes, my nephew showed up late but he was there too.
Early on some of us played "Heads Up!" since my niece had it on her iPhone. That was a lot of fun.  We did several categories. If you haven't seen this game ask around to folks you know that have an iPhone or an iPod Touch.  You can laugh a LOT.

The food was delicious.  I contributed a corn casserole and a custard pie. There was a LOT of food there. Almost everyone brought something. I ate a lot!  It was mmmm  mmmm good.

Black Friday was a day of rest and relaxation for me.  I do NOT participate in the crazy shopping. I just don't want to be in that kind of crowd.

Today I decided to use some fabrics that I won on a blog (A Legacy of Stitches).  I actually won some poinsettia fabric AND she shared part of a departed friend's stash.  I am having a great time with these fabrics.  I am adding in some of my stash as needed, but these two blocks came from that stash.
 I used a stack and cut method for making these.  It is really easy. I didn't worry about corners matching either. It was just fun- cut and sew.

I also realized that I never showed you the scarf I wove during my recent sale.  So here is the finished product.
I think it is prettier in person.  It is a nice long length - about 7 feet - and has a twisted fringe.  As I was weaving this at the show several people showed interest.  One of them took a card (apparently) and sent me a message.  She is interested in a class on weaving.  This tells me that my thoughts of teaching weaving when I retire is a good idea.  I will probably also teach some quilting classes as I have had one shop owner ask if I teach quilting.

Right now, I am going back to make more stack and cut blocks.  I hope you have a great weekend. d

Comments are welcomed. I will reply when possible unless otherwise stated.

Thursday, November 28, 2013

What are you Thankful for?

Today is a day to remember the things for which we are thankful.  I have learned to be thankful for many things.
Today it is very cold for November in Alabama.  When I got up this morning it was 23 degrees Fahrenheit.  Brrr - that is colder than it gets in January most years.  I am thankful that I have heat and a warm place to stay. I am thankful for warm clothing.  I am thankful for the COLD as it reminds me to enjoy the hot HOT days of an Alabama summer.

Sometimes it is hard to be thankful for things. I am thankful for adversity because it helps me to learn to overcome problems and find solutions. But for most of my life I was NOT thankful for adversity.

I am thankful for my health.  But the times of sickness also bring lessons in overcoming and in compassion. Yes, I can be thankful that I have been sick, but I am now well.  Being thankful when I am sick requires greater faith, but it is possible.

Try to find something to be thankful for when bad things happen to you. Yes it is difficult, but it will change your view of life.
Happy Thanksgiving to those who celebrate Thanksgiving. (I do, if you were wondering.)
And Happy Hanukkah to those who celebrate Hanukkah.  I am thankful for my friends from that Hebrew tradition also. Shalom!

Now for a "commercial" Craftsy is having a black Friday sale that has already started. If you have been considering a class, now is the time to take it. All classes are $19.99 or less. (and some of them are regularly $49.99 each)

Black Friday Sales at Craftsy!

Craftsy Yarn and Fabric sale up to 80% off from 11/27-12/2!

Craftsy has brilliant savings on the craft supplies you want!  With up to 80% off yarn and 65% off fabric, get the best prices of the year while you can.

Craftsy Class Sale up to 66% off from 11/29-12/2!

Craftsy has brilliant savings for a limited time only! All their online classes are on sale for $19.99 or less. With classes priced up to 66% off, now is a great time to get the classes you've been eyeing all year! Craftsy classes also make a great gift, so do some holiday shopping for the crafter in your life.

Comments are welcomed. I will reply when possible unless otherwise stated.

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Off the Face of the Earth?

I suppose some of you think I  have fallen off the face of the earth.  No, I haven't.  I have been on a simple hiatus because of the show/sale and some other things I had going on.  My cold is finally better. I am not going to let this cold wave of weather moving through doesn't cause me to relapse. I am staying nice and warm and out of the weather as much as possible.

The sale went well.  Although sales were down this year, I did make some good connections and will most likely get some commission work from it. (happy happy!)

Here are some pictures of my booth.

This is the basic booth shot. The doll is still with me. 
 I think my great niece may get it for Christmas

This shot shows my wall hanging 
 and the painting in the window. 

The woven scarves were a good seller.  Only two of these came home. 
The quilted journals sold also, but the quilted brag books didn't. 

As I said overall was  a good day.  I also took my small loom with me and wove most of a scarf while I was there.  Lots of people asked questions about the weaving.  It made me realize that I could teach weaving and probably have a nice little class of folks who want to learn how to weave. 

Comments are welcomed. I will reply when possible unless otherwise stated.

Saturday, November 23, 2013

Days go by

I am sure some of you have noticed that I haven't posted in several days.  I have been pretty busy AND I have been recuperating from that ugly cold.  I have a case of bronchitis and some allergy issues hanging on too.
I intended to take pictures of the packing and setup for the show. I was happy to just get it done. I hope to get a picture of my booth today.

Meanwhile,  here are a couple of the paintings I will have in the booth for sale today.

Title: Herewith

Title:  Forbidden Crossing

Comments are welcomed. I will reply when possible unless otherwise stated.

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Have you ever wondered.....

I am still fighting this cold but I am getting better.  Below is some sponsored info about Craftsy.  Now before you run away, I have to tell you:  I found this really interesting.  It helps me to understand why the classes are so good.  I am a real fan even if I didn't make a dime off of my love of these classes.  But since I am such a fan,  I was thrilled to become an affiliate for Craftsy.

Have you ever wondered what goes into the filming of a Craftsy class?  I have.  So I was happy to read about it.

What is Craftsy?

Craftsy is a worldwide craft community offering online classes. It also has a patterns marketplace where independent designers can sell their patterns; a supplies shop with great deals on yarn, fabric, and class kits; and a projects section where members share pictures of their latest craft successes. With over two million members and counting, Craftsy has something for just about everyone, in categories ranging from quilting, sewing, knitting, painting, photography, cooking, and more.

Craftsy Logo
Behind the Scenes: The Making of a Craftsy Class
Before filming even begins, hours and hours are spent determining what content will be covered in each class, and how to best teach specific techniques to the camera. Instructors work with an instructional designer to create an in-depth outline of each lesson, and decide how to best prepare props or “step-outs” that show what your project should like at different steps. Instead of a scripted class, instructors follow their outlines on camera to create an authentic and engaging teaching experience.

Most Craftsy classes are filmed in one of five Craftsy studios in Denver, CO, assuring that every part of the production process goes off without a hitch. They fly in instructors from all over the world to spend several days filming, then spend several weeks turning hours of footage into a two to three hour class experience that has been watched, rewatched, and reviewed by industry experts. The final result is an HD-quality video that takes you in-depth into specific topics in any given craft category- from cooking and fine art to sewing and knitting.

 What IS the Craftsy experience?
Craftsy classes are designed to have all the benefits of an in-person class, with none of the drawbacks. Available online and on-demand, you always have world-class instructors at the tip of your fingers. You can retake the class as many times as you want, and the 30-second repeat feature allows you to watch the same section over and over again until you get every technique just right.

Watching a Craftsy class is like having a first-row seat with some of the best instructors in the world. Even better, classes have a 100% money-back guarantee.

Try online learning today with a free mini-class from Craftsy! Choose from 23 Free Craftsy Classes ranging from drawing and painting to sewing and quilting, from knitting to cake decorating and more.

And so you know,  I clicked the link and found a free DRAWING class on the human figure. I know I will enjoy and learn something new from that one.

Comments are welcomed. I will reply when possible unless otherwise stated.