Sunday, November 22, 2009

There's no place like home!

Shepherd's Bush Designs "Snow Hill"
A quick stitch on vacation from start to finish in a few days!

Hi to all! I've been silent for awhile as we have been on vacation in Florida. It was great to get away, but I've payed the piper all week trying to play catch up. I'm still not "caught up" with my kids school stuff, but sometimes it's just nice to let things go!
Friday and Saturday I was sewing up a wicked storm, as I had to complete 2 baby blankets for baby showers and a birthday gift for one of my best friends. I made her a retro apron from Cindy Taylor Oates' book "More Retro Aprons." I'm telling you, it was the cutest aprons, EVER! (I made the one in the center of the photo) I give this pattern book a full "10". The instructions are very well done, and it was a perfect fit! I'm kicking myself for not taking pictures. I was literally clipping threads and wrapping these gifts five minutes before the baby shower! I hate feeling rushed to finish a project, and wish sometimes I could get more organized!

My little fam on Daytona beach. Notice my DS is the only one brave enough to go in the water the first few day. Towards the end of the week, we all ventured in!
No, we did not make these sand sculptures, but they were so cool! Every day we would enjoy watching this talented guy spend hours creating a new design. He used a little stick to smooth the sand.
Anyhoo, back to vacation fun, The weather was a tad on the chilly side. A tropical storm was brewing off the coast, which brought wind and cooler temps for the first 5 days we were there. Towards the end of the week, we were back into the high 70's and the beach was wonderful. We had a chance to sit around a watch a lot of movies, and I got a lot of stitching done!
Baby Bug Ball Finish. Dedicated to my little daughter, who is always dressing up, and to my friend Jane from Australia.
In addition to stitching "Snow Hill" (above), I finished up my BBB, that I've been stitching with Jane. It was a delightful stitch, and I am so grateful for her friendship, and encouragement. I probably would not have gotten this done without her. Just knowing that I had made a commitment with her, kept me on track. Thank you Jane for everything! You are a sweetie! Go to her blog for better photo's. Jane is the Queen of perfect photos!
I had issues with my little black crow. There weren't any button holes in him. You should have seen the look on my hubby's face when I asked him to drill some pin size holes in it! I decided to ignore his counsel and do surgery on the poor thing with a sharp quilting pin. I thought I had done it when all of a sudden I was holding two pieces of a crow! I know, I'm stupid and stubborn, sometimes. I super glued the little guy back together, took it to Shepherd's Bush, which they were happy to exchange, and I'll be sewing it on after this post!
A little present for myself.
A needle minder (which I don't have, and have always wanted), and
Shepherd's Bush Halloween scissor fob kit.

Speaking of Shepherd's Bush, I had "stitch group" the day after we got home. I was so happy to leave the mess and go and stitch some more! We have about 10 members. We rotate houses and have a great time enjoying lunch and stitching. One of our members needed to stop at Shepherd's Bush on the way, and we all ended having to buy something. I think between the 5 of us, we spent several hundred dollars. It was great! I didn't buy as much as some of the others this time, but I did splurge on a Kelmscott needle minder and a Halloween Scissor Fob by Shepherd's Bush, for my orange stork scissors that Jolene sent me!

I have been the lucky winner of 3 blogs. It is so funny, because I have been entering every contest found under the blogging sun, since last December, and I never win anything! For some reason, my luck has changed because I have won 3 times in one week! How lucky am I? I should have bought a power ball ticket! I'm not sure why my luck has changed, but you can bet that it was the incentive I needed to keep entering contests!
My winnings from Heather's blog!
My first win I posted last time, the cute stitchery from Sharlotte. The second was from Heather. Her blueberry pillow is darling, and the patterns were fun too. The needleroll from Lorri Birmingham was a kit, so that should be fun to do. Thanks so much Heather! You are so wonderful! I love everything you sent.
My winnings from Jolene's blog!
I was so incredibly fortunate to win Jolene's giveaway in October. She sent me Plum Street's Designs "Gobble", with the NPI silks! Also some wonderful hand towels, and a sweet card with leaf "hugs. I've been wanting this pattern, so I was thrilled when I opened it! As always, Thank you sweet Jolene! I love it!
A wonderful surprise from Terri!
And if that didn't show how lucky I've been, then this will. Terri, sent me a wonderful surprise! I inquired about a sampler she has hanging over her fireplace in one of her photos. A lovely sampler called "Mary Allen". Terri, the sweet dear, sent me the pattern, along with some wonderful floss tags for the Mary Allen sampler and for "Alphabet Blocks" by CHS. I had asked her some questions about that one as well, as I have just kitted it up, and she was the model stitcher for it! She also sent a wonderful blackbird pattern, that I love, and will probably do very soon!
I feel so blessed to have such wonderful friends. Thanks to all my blogging friends out there! I do not have a lot of interaction with friends, being cooped up on the house with my children every day. You are my outlet! My chance to connect with adults, and to be inspired. Thanks so much for your friendship.

I will be working on Christmas gifts the next few weeks, so I will have some fun things to show. Take Care all, and have a wonderful Thanksgiving week!

I almost forgot to show you that I kitted Blackbird's "Greetings" from the Peppermint and Holly book. I don't know if I can finish before Christmas, but I'm going to work on this during the holidays!

Monday, November 2, 2009

Little House Needleworks Stitched by Sharlotte
I got a wonderful surprise in the mail on Thursday from Sharlotte.
I won this darling LHN sampler that she stitched and gave away on her blog, The Happy Needle. I love it! I tried to take it to the framing store on Saturday, and they closed an hour earlier than normal because of Halloween. Darn it! I'll have to take it another time this week.
Thank you so much Sharlotte!
Baby Bug Ball Shepherd's Bush
I've been working on Baby Bug Ball by Shepherd's Bush, with my dear friend Jane. My photo's pale greatly in comparison to hers, so if you want to see better pictures, head on over to her blog, Miss Jane's Stitching. It has been really fun to work on this with someone else. She encourages me to keep going, and I like that we are working on different parts of the sampler. That way we can help each other with any snags that may come our way. Thank you Jane! I love working on this with you.Another American Girl Outfit!
I have also finished another American Girl outfit. This one is Josefina's Birthday party camisa and skirt. We bought the fan and yellow shawl, but I made the skirt and top. I added a green velvet ribbon from my husbands Grandmother's stash. I was the lucky recipient of all of her sewing trims, and stash when she passed away. (I also inherited her Bernina Sewing machine, which I could not live without!)
Popping some Indian Corn
While carving pumpkins last week, we popped some Indian popping corn that we bought at the farmers market. I was really surprised that it worked! You stick it in a paper bag and pop for a minute or two. It was delicious, and left me wanting more. Darn carbs!

Eating "POPcorn on the cob"
This is my 12 year old son. I feel bad I don't talk about him much on this blog. Most of my sewing revolves around my DD. He is a great kid, always willing to have fun.
Hope you all had a wonderful Halloween! Until next time friends!

Sunday, October 25, 2009

A big surprise, finishes, and a get away!

A surprise from my dear blogging friend, Jolene!

I got the most wonderful surprise in the mail on Friday. Jolene, one of our sail away members, sent me a gift of orange, rust colored stork scissors and a darling card. I was so blown away by her kindness! When I opened the card these wonderful Fall leaves floated into my lap. It was like getting little hugs from a friend. I've never met Jolene, but can you just tell by how generous she is with others, that she is one sweet, kindred friend. I hope to be a friend like her. She makes you feel good and loved, which is a true gift. Thank you a million times Jolene! I can't wait to meet. There are so many bloggers that I feel this way about. To all of you, I thank you for your comments, and inspiration in helping me be a better person. By the way, Jolene is having a fabulous blog give-away. You will definitely want to check it out.
Spooky Sheep by Shepherd's Bush. One of the few finishes I've done lately. Made perfect with Jolene's sweet gift!

Flea Market Find by Blackbird Designs
I've managed to finish another work in progress. I changed the colors of the fabric, and stitched the vine on the right side of the house instead of the left. I also added the date, a couple more motifs around the house, and the mother-of-pearl button. I'm still trying to decide if I like it the button. What do you think? Does it need more buttons to even it out?
I stitched spider-web roses on my vine, and added a few more motifs. I also changed the color of the stem and leaves in the third block to GA Dried Thyme. It went better with my fabric color.
This week I have been trying to make some progress on Sail Away. I'm hoping to finish soon, so that I can work on another Shepherd's Bush Design, Baby Bug Ball.After about a half of an hour of frustration, and staring hopelessly at this project, I discovered why I was off one thread. Can you see that stitch right in the middle, that I went over one thread instead of two? When I discovered it, I just about died! At that moment I certainly wanted to! My kids wanted to know why I was talking like Yosemite Sam! This screw up could not have been in a worse spot since I had completed the water and lighthouse section already. To fix it, it would have meant ripping out half of this section. Thankfully I was cheered up by Jolene's gift, and decided to try and figure out a way to fix the problem. I am stitching the entire hillside over one thread instead of two. It will take twice as long, but it's better than the alternative of ripping this whole section out. Shepherd's Bush, Baby Bug Ball.
I'm stitching this with Jane, my blogging friend from Australia.

Another dear blogger that I love to read, Miss Jane's Stitching, is starting Baby Bug Ball. I asked her if she minded a tag-a-long stitcher. I always work better on something if I can be inspired by someone else's photos. She is on board, and I'm thrilled to be able to stitch this with her. I actually started this about 3 years ago. I worked on it all night, and this is how far I got. I remember being so proud of myself that I got so much done, and then, for some unknown reason, I put it away, and there it has sat in the back of my closet ever since! I have it on my UFO finish list for 2009, so with Jane's incredible photos, and support, I hope to get it done in a timely manner. Thanks so much Jane! I'm excited to stitch with you!
Inside the American Girl museum, Los Angeles
Last month we snuck away to Los Angeles for the day. DD and I wanted to go before Christmas so she could pick out her doll. It was a really quick trip. We were there less than 24 hours. I've been sewing like mad to get some outfits made to put under the tree. It has been a fun endeavor for me! I love sewing doll clothes. I won't show you a picture yet, but I promise I will when it gets closer to the holidays.
Lining up for the doll salon. We did not do this, but I thought it was cleaver and fun!Julie, the doll my DD had her heart set upon!
I was prepared to lay out a lot of cash at this place, but the only thing that my daughter wanted was the Julie doll, and a black fan. I told her she could get an outfit or two, but she was dead set on just having the doll! Now these dolls aren't cheap. I had to do a heck-of-a lot-of- talking to get my husband to agree to buy a $95.00 doll in the first place, so he was thrilled we didn't buy more.Riding the trolley outside of the mall where the American Girl Store is. What a beautiful California Day!
DD made out again at the hardware store last week, when I had another moment of weakness and my husband and I bought her a bunny. Twenty minutes after leaving the store I was wondering what in the heck I was thinking! I don't need more stress with another animal! This little guy is really friendly, and loves to be held like a baby. He hardly gets put down between husband, DD and DS.
A Vintage Christmas By Bunny Hill
Last but not least, I've been working on A Vintage Christmas by Bunny Hill. It is a darling quilt that I've started with my Mom and Sister-in-law. We got together on a Friday last month, and pooled our stashes together to get a quilt cut for each of us. We did buy some of the fabrics that were used in the original, but over all, we saved a lot of money by sharing stash. I am pumped over this quilt! It is so cute. Hopefully I can get it done for Christmas. I am using the "spray starch method" of applique.

Thanks for stopping by to see me! I'm so grateful for my dear blogging friends. I hope all is well with you. Thanks for your sweet comments. I love hearing from you.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Halloween fun!

Halloween is in the air! One of my favorite times of the year. Jolene is having a wonderful giveaway. Blackbird designs new chart, with thread and fabric! What a great way to celebrate the season. Also my friend Sharlotte is giving away a beautiful needle case. Go over and take a look!

I just put up my quilt that I made last year, that matches Blackbird's sampler, so I thought I would share.Blackbird Designs Midnight Silhouette without the leaf border
I opted not to put the leaf boarder around the edges, because quite frankly, I think that would have sent me to the loony bin. Appliqueing all those leaves? What was Barb thinking? (Love ya Barb, and you have more patience than me!) I was going to put a scalloped edge on this, but forgot to share that vision with the quilter, and she quilted a wonderful leaf border all around, which didn't leave me room to do that. I'm still happy with the way it turned out.

Light Your Way by Blackbird Designs. This is in the "Trix or Treat" Book.
I made a few color changes
Here are my changes:

The pumpkin = Cognac (Weeks)
The border = Caper (Weeks)
Words and Crow = mascara (weeks)
Stars = Finley gold (crescent colors)
5 squares below star = cognac
Date = caper
Pumpkin Stem = Caper
Basket = Mascara
Leaves = Caper
Flower = Mulberry (weeks)
4 squares and initials = Mulberry

Thought I would also share one of favorite Halloween samplers. I stitched this last year, and love the way it turned out. The frame is the best part. It looks like it's been painted 15 times or so. I think it really adds to the vintage charm of the piece.

One of my many Halloween walls.
Hope all is well with you dear friends. I haven't had much else to share lately. I'm up to my eyeballs in school work with my kids. It does make one cranky when there is no time for stitching and sewing!
Until next time.

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Christmas in July...or August

Hi everyone. I'm so sorry I haven't posted in a while. I've tried to keep up with your blogs, so sorry if I've missed a lot of posts. I feel like life is on fast forward. Somebody push the stop button!
Here are some things I've been doing this summer. I finally got this quilt ready for the quilters. It took longer than it should have. I love this quilt, but the greens and yellows are the wrong color for my living room. My walls are sage green, and tan. I wish I would have gone for a different colors. It isn't going to go where I had planned to put it, but it will look cute on my quilt ladder that I change out quilts for the seasons. Also looks great in my sewing room which is apple green, but there is no room for a quilt this big. (Bummer!)

My kids have started school. This is my 4th year homeschooling. This year we are attending the Utah Virtual Academy. It is a charter-Internet based school. The curriculum is wonderful, and the schedule is already planned for me, which is great.

I went to my 20th high school reunion last month, and reconnected with a classmate that sews doll clothes. That got me thinking about my little daughter and Christmas. I decided this might be the year to introduce her to the American Girl dolls. Her cousin gave her the "Addy" doll several years ago, but she hasn't really played with it that much, either because she was just too young, or didn't have any clothes for it. I'm planning a trip to L.A so she can pick out her very own doll. I think I'm more excited about it than she is!
I found this great website that has free downloads for all of the original AG doll clothes, and so... a sewing I have been doing! Mind you these clothes are suppose to be for Christmas, but I'm so excited about them, I've given her a few things now. I've got to make some and tuck them away for the real event! I'm really having a blast making these! I can't seem to stop. I downloaded all of the patterns (beware... it's over 350 sheets of paper and a cartridge of ink)!
First I made these cute clothes. Fun, free easy patterns from You Can Make this. com.
Then I moved on to pajamas. These are "Molly's pajamas from the American Girl patterns. I changed the colors, and added ruffles on the bottom.Since both the Pj's went okay, I decided to really challenge my sewing skills and make the "Felicity dress." I have to tell you that sewing this was like stitching a historical sampler. I love the detail!

This is the ruffle around the collar. I think I used every pin I had. It took about 3 1/4 yards of ribbon and 4 hours to pin together.

Next I did the "Addy Tartan Dress". I still have to sew on some bows and buttons, but it turned out pretty cute. My DD just wants her to wear the pink dress. This one didn't excite her near as much.

I finished my Amish quilt, twice. I gave the other identical quilt to my friend Kim to commemorate our trip to PA. Now it's off to the quilters too.
My dear friend Deb sent me these patterns a few months ago, from her stash. I can't wait to do some of the little Amish designs to go with my quilt. I really appreciate her friendship. I feel so blessed to meet such great friends through blogging. Thanks Deb!

Last week, I won Doris' giveaway. She was giving away some UFO's and I thought this Shepherd's Bush sampler would be perfect for my daughter to start stitching on. She is just learning, and loving it! Thank you Doris!

I got my Petite Rouge letters back from the framers. This was Blackbirds contest from a few months ago. This is personalized with my Grandma's name. I love looking at it.

To add to my scary thoughts that summer is almost over...we had a "friend" come to our BBQ last week.Can you believe the size of that sucker?! I could have just died. It was making a web on the door knob. We get tarantula's usually in October, but it is rare to see one this early. Someone said that we will have a hard winter. Something not to look forward to! I can feel Fall in the air, even though we have high temperatures still. I love fall, but I always feel sad when summer starts to fade. Time marches on faster than we want too I'm afraid.

Until next time dear friends. Enjoy your weekend!

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Where is the summer going?

DD as Hannah Montana at her "rock star" party!

I had big plans this summer, to get soooo much stitching and quilting done. Well, like many of you that isn't happening. I'm a bit frustrated by that, but I can't complain too much, as I've been getting my house "deep cleaned" and there have been many fun memories made with BBQ's and parties.

My daughter turned 8 this month, my husband and I celebrated our 16th wedding anniversary. We have had 6 other family members with birthday's in the past two weeks, and Pioneer celebrating in Utah to boot! It's been crazzzzy. I'm ready for it to slow down!

I have managed to finish my June SAL assignment for Shores, but haven't started July's. I did snap a quick picture just so I can prove to you that I did it! The big news is that Terri and I are hosting a SAL and we have an official site set up now. Please check it out at We are so excited to be sailing away on August 5th Terri's 50th birthday! If you are one of the official members, I need your e-mail addresses so that I can add you as an author.

This is a short post. Hopefully all is well in your neck of the woods! Take care friends.