"A very Merry Unbirthday to you, to you. A very Merry Unbirthday to you." from Walt Disney's Alice in Wonderland"

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Blizzard, But Life Goes On

 We had a blizzard here that dropped more than 15 inches of snow beginning on Sunday afternoon through Monday morning. Yesterday was clean up day, and there was alot of shoveling and plowing going on even though the wind gusts were strong. Thankfully my neighbor used his snow blower to clean out my driveway entrance and sidewalk, and he also helped other people on the street. God bless him. I did the walk and front porch and the inside driveway.
No sewing going on here. Hopefully, tonight maybe.

This is the snow mound on the left side of the driveway.  It doesn't look too bad in the picture  Walking is dangerous because there is so much ice, and so people stay in the street, which are all salted and sanded.  But then when you reach your destination you need to find a clear path to get to the sidewalk again or else climb over a snow mound.  The kids do that:)  That must be why they call us hardy New Englanders. 
Moxie's tipped toed out a few times, but only lasts a few minutes.  This morning the windchill was 6 degrees, the temperature 17.  But, by this weekend it will be in the 40's.  If you don't like the weather, wait a minute.

I've been out twice today to my church to serve morning Mass and to serve at a funeral.  And now I think I'm taking a walk to the library to get something to read. 

God Bless!

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Merry Wednesday Before Christmas

I received a very pretty gift in the mail from Sue of Quilt Times (http://www.quilttimes.blogspot.com/ ).  It's the mug rug pictured below.   I love it.  Thanks, Sue.  (And the card is cute, too.)

I won this group of vintage Christmas fabric from Colleen of  Lucky Duck Dreams. (http://www.cyarnell.blogspot.com/ ) The fabrics are just what I like.   Thank you Colleen.

And as you can see on the left, there were more pillow cases in the works.

I won this book during SewCalGal's Christmas Quilt Show. ( http://www.sewcalgal.blogspot.com/ )  It's really neat.  The blocks can either make a quilt or be used to make runners,  mats, stockings, etc.  It's a sweet book by Melinda Bula.  
Thank you, Darlene.

 I also want to acknowledge Barbara from Cat Patches ( http://www.catpatches.blogspot.com/ ) who has a Fun Friday contest each week.  I won a fat quarter of red fabric which I can't show to you because I've already sewn with it.  It was the perfect color for what I was doing. 
Thank you, Barbara. 

I apologize for not being able to keep up with the posts of the blogs I love to follow.  I'm not one of those women who can do it all.   But I will catch up one day soon.  I want to know and see what you are all up to.

I hope you are enjoying this time of year and this beautiful celebration of faith.  I am. 

I also want to mention that on January 3rd I will be celebrating the one year anniversary of my blog.  I'll have a giveaway, if not on that exact day then soon after. What a wonderful year it's been for my sewing life.  It would be even better if I catch up on all of my projects.  Maybe that's what I'll get for Christmas; time and motivation.

God Bless You. 

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Christmas Pillow Cases

I've been making pillow cases for the little ones in my family.  I've got fabric featuring Mickey Mouse and friends, Pooh and friends, Rudolph and that kid whoever he is and, one of my favorites, Bugs Bunny.  Somewhere in blogland one of the bloggers posted about how she makes her children and now grandchildren pillow cases and puts the gifts into them.  I loved that idea, so I'm doing it this year. 

  I am using directions I got from Janet Wickell at about.com quilting because they enclose all of the seams. http://quilting.about.com/od/quiltpatternsprojects/ss/easy-pillowcase-pattern.htm

  The side and bottom seams are french seams and the band is sewn in such a way that the seam is encased when the band is turned.  I'm so impressed that I think I should never again buy another pillow case. 

I planned on showing some items that I received from blog giveaways, but alas, my camera is uncooperative.  Hopefully at a future date I'll be able to show them.

God Bless You.

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Christmas Doings

When I saw the December design that Sylvia created for the cross-stitch sal I couldn't have been more pleased.  And when I went to the comment section of the post and read what the other stitchers said, I saw that I was not alone.  Slyvia designed the perfect ending for the project.

I don't know if she plans to start another sal for the new year.  I hope so.  Now I need to get my project in a frame so that it doesn't get lost and forgotten.

In yesterday's mail I received my third envelope of 5 inch squares from Benartex, and they are so pretty.  They are from the Mayfair collection by Michelle D'Amore.  Very romantic and elegant.

Yesterday I made my little pilgrimage to the LaSallette Shrine and enjoyed it very much. I attended a concert where we sang along with Father Pat, liked the music so much I bought his CD, petted the little donkey, Clopper, who is guarding the stable, and ooh'd and aah'd when the lights went on.   This picture shows the lights reflecting in the pond that circles what's called the Rosary Bridge. 

 All of the lights on the tree in the middle are shaped as doves. 

Now I'm off to another of my Christmas doings.  The local public high school has a two day craft fair each year to benefit the scholarship fund.  The auditorium has something like 200  crafters selling their stuff, so I'm going to see what they've got.  It's usually interesting and fun. 

God Bless You.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Special Post for Napkin Challenge

This is a special post for Nina Lise's Napkin Challenge.  If you can, visit http://www.mrsmoen.blogspot.com/ to see what the other bloggers have made. 
Many of you have seen these pictures from previous posts (probably ad nauseum), but here they are again as part of the entry requirement.

I'm so glad I joined this challenge because it was interesting and fun, and made me do something I didn't think I could do.  Thank you, Nina Lise, for this great idea of yours and for this fun exercise in creativity.

First, lets start with the napkin.

I played with it a little.  The skinny ribbon and fun fur didn't work.

So I made a fabric ribbon and turned the block to point.  Much better.

I decided to make a wall hanging/table cover from the block.
All finished.

God Bless Everyone.  Don't forget to visit Mrs. Moen's blog.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Happy Thanksgiving Eve

My Annalees make me smile, so I'm sharing them with my readers.  Hope they make you smile, too. 

Today I thought I would show off some the items I've won that I haven't mentioned before.  During the Fall into Fall blog hop I won this basket full of scrapbook supplies from Blissful Baby (http://www.blissfulbaby.etsy.com/.)  My sister's the scrapbooker, so I'm giving her most of the stuff, but I think I'm keeping the basket for my cross stitch projects.  It's a beautiful basket of goodies.  Thank you Blissful Baby.

Back in August during the first month of the Christmas qal, I won this from Sue (http://www.quilttimes.blogspot.com/.)  She asked that I not post about it until the qal was over, so it's safe to show now.  What's funny is that  for the past few days I've been searching for  coasters, forgetting I had these to use.  Not only pretty, but useful.  And the little button box will come in handy, too. Thank you, Sue.

I liked both pictures so I'm using them both.

I won this collection of thread from Connecting Threads (http://www.connectingthreads.com/.)  I love it.  It's a great gift because I've read good things about this brand, it's very generous, and the colors are lovely.  The bad thing is I deleted the email telling me I won, so I can't remember what the reason was, but thank you, Connecting Threads.  They have a neat sales site, too.

And during the 100 Blocks designer tour held by Quiltmaker magazine, (their blog is http://www.quiltypleasures.com/ ) I won a copy of the magazine.  This is the second edition, and it's great. 

I won a book as part of the giveaways from SewCalGal's Christmas Quilt Show (http://www.sewcalgal.blogspot.com/), and I'll show it to you when I get it. 

Hope everyone is well.  God Bless you.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Napkin Challenge Wall Hanging

I finished making the wall hanging from the Napkin Challenge block.  I like it.  I don't know where or how I am going to hang the three wall hangings I made, but they are going up Friday, the day after Thanksgiving.  I have never put up Christmas decorations this early that I can remember, but this year will be different.  Next Sunday is the First Sunday of Advent.  That made me gasp. 

I'm already hearing carols in some the stores, and I have heard some people complaining that it's too early for them.  And I have also heard people say they like them.  I'm on that side of the fence this year.  It's all going to be over too soon, and the Christmas music is some of the most beautiful we hear, so I'm enjoying it.

Hope everyone is well.  God Bless you.

Friday, November 19, 2010

Jane Wickell's Scrappy Sampler Quilt Along

Jane Wickell at about.com Quilting is hosting a quilt along of sampler quilt blocks using scraps.  I've joined in because it's very doable at two blocks a month.  The first block is The Road to California. As soon as I saw the name of this block I thought of my brother's son who lives in California with his wife and two children .  I truly love the classic blocks.  This block was created during the move west by so many Americans.  I made the block today, and plan to make another using different fabric, as mentioned by one of the forum members on Janet's forum.  This block is also known as  Jacob's Ladder and Underground Railroad.  I feel a chill when I think that I am making a block created by women who travelled in covered wagons in the 1800's.   I understand the triangles are representative of birds in flight. 
Nothing else to show tonight.  I've been converting my napkin block into a table cover, but it isn't done yet,  But very close.

I had a right of passage this week.  I attended my first Seniors Thanksgiving Meal at my parish school.  The eighth graders were our servers, and the other grades entertained us by class.    It was so sweet.  Maybe I appreciated it so much because I am childless, but I loved it.  In fact, I couldn't help but remember all of the plays and performances my sister, brother and I did when we were at the school.  I made sure I smiled and clapped alot.  You can't help but be hopeful when you see those young faces.

God Bless.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Christmas Quilt Show Entry

SewCalGal is hosting a Christmas Quilt Show (http://sewcalgal.blogspot.com/), and I've decided to enter one of the items I made during the Christmas Quilt Along that Sue from Quilt Times hosted from August through November.  In fact, yesterday was our last qal day.  My entry is something I began in August during the first Saturday's sewing, and didn't finish until just a few weeks ago. I had bought some panels about thirty years ago or so (can you believe it?  We don't throw anything away in this house!), and wanted to make something with them.  This table runner is what resulted.

This is the first bigger piece on which I used free motion machine quilting .  It isn't perfect, and I ripped out alot of stitches, but I quilted it with many loops in variegated thread that is red, white and green. 

The white fabric is also vintage from the same period.  I found it in the house put away and rolled up with the name of the store still on it.  In the eighties, when I was in my 30's,I was very much into hand crafts.  I quit smoking when I hit 30 and fortunately I had an outlet to keep my hands busy.

I love the panels in this runner.  They are romantic and gentle, and I hope I displayed them well.  They were meant to be made into small pillow ornaments, but this is better.

The backing is decorative as well. 

There is a second part to this post that isn't connected to the Quilt Show, but it is my personal show of the items I made during the Christmas Quilt Along.

The Christmas Tree wall hanger in the upper left was made the first morning, and I began the runner in the afternoon.  The lower left shows a quilt I began second month (and haven't finish yet, but I will:) ), and the polar bear wall hanging was begun that month.  I worked on both of them the third month, and yesterday I made the block in the lower right.  Those are my accomplishments from the qal, and I think I did pretty well, don't you? 

God Bless Everyone!

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Christmas Quilt Along Saturday

11:35 am  I finished my block, and I like it.

Now that this is done, I need to find a good way to use it.  This is the first quilt block I have designed, albeit with heavy inspiration from another source. 

The other napkin I had is a snowman, and I was going to use white fun fur to outline and fill in his shape.  I might do that next.  Time to pay visits to the other participants.
FYI:  This Christmas Quilt Along is hosted by Sue from Quilt Times.  If you want to know more about it, click the Christmas Tree button on the left.

8:52 am  Good Morning!  This is the second Saturday of the month, so it's qal day.  I am working on the Napkin Challenge I signed up for with Nina Lise from Mrs.Moen.com.  The idea is to use a design on a napkin as a point of inspiration for creating something.  I'm doing a quilt block.  I have two napkins that I immediately liked.  I was inspired with several ideas for both, so we'll see which turns out the best. This is the first one:

At first, I wanted to do a kind of multi-media design, using applique, embroidery, and three-dimensional items.  I did this mock-up:
I wanted to use fun fur yarn for the evergreens, but didn't like the color I found, so I'm skipping that.  That might be embroidery, or I won't put in any at all.

Then, I decided to start over and use fabric for the bow, and just do the holly, candy canes, and bow.  This is where I am right now:
I'm going to keep going with this block, and if I like it enough when I'm done, and I like it so far, I'll submit it today. 

Hope everyone else is having an enjoyable Saturday.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

A Couple of Things Done and an Invitation

Sylvia's November cross stitch pattern is a lady doing cross stitch, and it's very cute.  I made mine with blue eyes so she could be like me:
In the old days I wore my hair in a flip, and I have a black cat.  All I need are red shoes and a blue dress with a big heart on the skirt and I could be her:)
I finished the border so that when I get and sew the December design, I can call it done.  I'm thinking of making this into a pillow instead of framing it or forgetting about it altogether.

I finished the Christmas table runner that I began in August.  For some reason this runner took much time, and when I was finishing it I thought that all I'm going to do is pile up my Annalee dolls on top of it so not much of it will be visible.   I'm happy it's done.

I joined Midge from Soggibottom's Pay It Forward, and she sent to me a lovely package of gifts:

She knitted the mohair wristlets and made the key chain, and the Union Jack bag is perfect.  I have already used the bag and love it, and have used the wristlets which are warm and soft and love them, too.  Thank you so much, Midge.

So my invitation is to anyone reading this blog who may want to join me in my Pay It Forward.  I need three people to join me, and I will send to each of them a gift package, and in turn, each one of them will invite three people to join them.   And on it goes in a continuous and expanding cycle of good wishes and gifts.  Do I have anyone interested?  If so, you can leave me a comment here or email me if you prefer.  I have one year to complete my obligation, but I would like to make a start.  

I joined Nina Lise's Napkin Challenge, and every time I go shopping I forget to look for an inspirational napkin.  So I am going out right now to see what I can find. 

I forgot to turn back the clocks last night.  This morning I had to attend the 7:30 a.m. Mass, and fortunately, figured out before I left the house that I was an hour early.  It was just too dark, and that made me think about daylight savings time.  I've never done that before, especially in the autumn when I love the extra hour. 

God Bless You.