Sunday, July 31, 2011

Enjoying The Day

"If you can eat today,
Enjoy the sunlight today,
Mix good cheer with friends today,
Enjoy it and bless God for it."
Henry Ward Beecher

Today is just one of those all around good feeling days.  We closed church this morning singing "Great is thy faithfulness" and it has been in my head and heart ever since. Just one of those nice not a lot to do Sundays. We did start the day off with some sprinkles (very uncommon for July in So. Calif.) now it is just hot and muggy. Some one is sawing wood behind us and you can smell fresh cut wood in the air. Isn't the smell of fresh cut wood comforting some how.

I have been doing some cross stitching but I can't show you. I finished my piece for the Summer Exchange.  Did a  little something different in my finishing, I hope I don't get kicked out of the exchange group. You will have to wait until mid August to see. What I have been doing that I can share is that I have been playing with the new sewing machine.

I went to a quilt shop and bought a purse pattern and material. Thought how hard could it be. I love the fall so I bought some wonderful fall fabric and starting stitching away yesterday. I was surprised when late yesterday afternoon I had a finished project.

The pattern called for 3 matching material patterns. Mixing prints is another one of those quirks I am trying to over come. That I am getting better at. I choose a tree pattern for the main part and a rust marble for the  cuff and inside pockets, the gold has small leafs on it and it is used for the bow and lining.

It has been many years since I have sewed anything with a pattern and that was the old fashion kind like "Simplicity". This was from a quilt shop so it was a little confusing at first, no real pattern to lay out just sizes to cut out.

My daughter will be going to a bridal shower where the bride favorite colors are brown and pink. On our trip Jennifer bought the cutest old fashion train case in a polka dot print of brown and pink.  Since I had good luck on my last zipper pouch I made some accessories  to go inside.

It is a zipper pouch, 2 size drawstrings bags lined in opposite color and a tissue holder.

I will stop doing so many secret stitching projects so I can share with you. Enjoy the rest of your day.

Always keep love in your stitches,

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

My First SAL Finish

"Reliable friends who do what the say
are like cool drinks in sweltering heat - refreshing!"
Proverbs 25:13

Denise and I have finished our small but cute SAL. It is Tiny Garden by Shepherd's Bush.

Denise made hers a small pillow for her little basket of pillows:

I love that Denise got more pink in her ribbon. She did a wonderful job. It will be a wonderful addition to her basket.

Here is my finish. I just happen to have a pair of scissors in my stash that I thought would be just perfect for my fob.

I will confess to you I have had this project for about 6 months. I know it was a kit and we all know kits don't come cheap, but some how they land in our basket at the checkout.  When I saw Denise had bought the same kit I asked if she wanted to stitch it together. That was the incentive I needed. You see it is not the stitching that was stopping me it was the ribbon. I am not a free spirit. I like things balanced. I like things to be even. I quote the directions " This is fun so be calm and let the ribbon bunch and move as it will. Sometimes I let the ribbon loop up a bit and sometimes lay flat." Well that is all good if you are a free spirit. I was so tempted to iron the ribbon first, and then I wanted to measure and make sure each loop was the same size and the same distance apart. Lets be real if I wasn't doing this piece with Denise I would have cheated and not used the ribbon. But in the end I let go made different sized loops and guess what the sun still rose this morning and will set tonight (hopefully). So I ask are you a free spirit or do you like order?

A big THANK YOU to Denise for doing my first SAL with me.

"The question should be, is it worth trying to do,
not can it be done."
Allard Lowen Stein

Always keep love in your stitches,

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Back to Civilization

"If you come home as happy as you leave,
you have had a good vacation."
Arthur Unknown

I am back to civilization. We had a wonderful time sitting back and just enjoying nature. After about a 6 hour drive through mostly desert we arrived at our destination. I  was hoping it would be a lot cooler but we did have very cool nights so I can't complain too much. As I sat outside doing some stitching this was my view from my chair.
You can barely see but just right beside the trees was this wonderful creek. The snow level in the Sierra's was so high this year that with the melting all the creeks and lakes are extremely full. This is what was about 10 feet from my chair.
It was so nice to lay in the trailer and hear the water streaming down it's path. Ok so I also woke up to the sound of water so of course I had to go make my own water first thing. That happens as we get older.

I did do some stitching but can't show you everything. I finished the stitching part for my next summer exchange. Now I need to decide on the finishing.  A while back I was looking for a pattern to make 10 favors for a tea I attend in December. I didn't use the one I asked about because it was from a 2002 magazine. I did get a tip on a freebie pattern. I got started on my favors and this is what I got done. Sorry I haven't ironed it yet.
There will be some red beads added later and then they will become scissor fobs.

Denise and I have finished our SAL so keep posted for our finished projects. Being out of Internet range and mostly cell phone too for the past few days it is taking me awhile to get caught up on my blogging. I didn't realize how addicted I was until you all were out of my life for awhile. I look forward to getting back in the real world.

Always keep love in your stitches,

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

SAL Progress

"Always keep that happy attitude.
Pretend that you are holding a
beautiful fragrant bouquet."
Candice M. Pope

I am fortunate enough to be going camping  this weekend. We are headed up to Lake Crowley by Mammoth Mountain in the Sierra's. I am hoping for much cooler weather when we get up there. First we have about a five hour drive in the heat. For that reason we are hoping for a early start. Because I am leaving before the end of the week when Denise and I are supposed to post our SAL progress I am posting tonight.

Here is mine:
I got all the stitching done and this week will attempt the ribbon edging.

Denise at Riverside Stitching has had one of those trying weeks and will do her stitching later. Here is what she has done.

Stitching this together and communicating thru emails has meant more to me than I can say. Our new friendship will last longer than this project.

Keep an eye out to see if we can do the fancy ribbon edging. Meantime I will be out of Internet reach for a few days.

Always keep love in your stitches,

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

I've been playing!

"We don't stop playing because we grow old,
we grow old because we stop playing."
George Bernard Shaw

A few weeks back I was fortunate to win some wonderful homemade items from Barbara at To stitch or not to stitch. I decided I wanted to make a zipper bag like the one I won. I went to my local Joann's and was looking at the remnants because they were 50% off. My daughter is a big tea drinker and there was this cute material with the names of tea all over it. I bought it and put it aside not real sure how to really get started. One day I was on the freebie gallery and saw a zipper bag  and mentioned Karen at Sew Much 2 Luv. She had this great tutorial Don't fear the zipper.... bag  and Easy peasy tissue holder. Well now I was ready to start my first zipper bag. I cut out my material, I also found some great lining material in the remnant, I was ready to go.  But I mean a big BUT, where is my zipper foot. You see my first sewing machine was bought with my first full time tax return back in early 1978 fast forward to about late 80's and I got a new better sewing machine. Since my mom's was so old I gave her my old one. Years later my mom got a new one and I took back the 1978 old Kenmore. Daughter moves out of the house a few years ago, borrows my sewing machine and well never have seen it again. So I am back to the 1978  and somewhere in the move the zipper foot got lost.  All day Friday and Saturday husband heard me complain about missing foot. Sunday I go to Joann's after church to see if they have a zipper foot. No but they have machines on sale. I look at the very simple heavy duty one. Come home do some research on line and husband who is tried of hearing about missing foot says you deserve a new one. Later that day we went to Sears to look for zipper foot, yes I know it is 2011 and I am looking for a 1978 foot.  Well imagine that no foot only new top of the line computer type machines. Told husband don't need that just a simple one. We leave go downstairs and by the door is sewing machines on clearance. Too late to make this long story short, I bought the computer one on sale for $149.00. Twenty dollars cheaper than the simple one on sale at Joann's. We go to check out and they ask to you have a rewards card, of course I do and that day you get an additional 10% off with rewards. So with tax only pay $143.00. So here is my new toy.

The best thing about it is you bring down this little tool and it threads itself, that's right itself. I could do it with out glasses. You just drop in the bobbin. I have been playing with putting in a number and stitching a new stitch. I guess I really needed more than a simple machine after all.

Here is my first zipper bag. Since my daughter only uses cloth handkerchiefs I changed the measurements just a little and made a pouch for Wet-Ones. With the left over I made a draw string bag. With Karen's tutorial I even lined the zipper bag.

Well I am off to do some more playing. Hope your day is as fun as mine.

Always keep love in your stitches,

Monday, July 18, 2011

We have a WINNER!

"Live today fully, expressing gratitude
for all you have been,
all you are right now,
and all you are becoming."
Melody Beattie

My give away was my way of saying "Thank You" to all who follow and leave such thoughtful comments.  Blogging really has been a joy in my life. I have gotten to know some of you by reading your blogs and boy have I learned so much from you. You are quick with help in your comments and kind words of praise. I have tried finishes I thought were impossible but seeing every one's lovey finishes has been an encouragement. I have to also admit that many times after seeing a piece or two that you have stitched I had to go out and order one for myself (and of course when ordering I never stopped at the one item I started with). 

Now I better tell who my winner of the notebook is. Sarah Beth from . Please stop by her blog and say "Hello".  I believe she is new to blogging and only has about 21 followers.  I contacted her this morning and she is recently out of the hospital and winning the give away she said is a treat.

Thank you everyone that entered.

I got a new toy yesterday and I hope to have some pictures tomorrow to show you what I have been playing with today.

Always keep love in your stitches,

Friday, July 15, 2011

Another First For Me

The happiest business in all the world
is that of making friends,
And no investment on the street
pays larger dividends,
For life is more than stocks and bonds,
and love than rate percent,
And she who gives in friendship's name
shall reap what she has spent.
Arthur Unknown

I am doing my first SAL. I must first tell you how it came about. I had been  following Denise at Riverside Stitching. She and Mary Jane were both stitching "Dandy Dreams" and posting their progress. It was interesting to me to see how each one started in a different area and how different they looked. At first I didn't think they were really stitching the same piece.  When they both finished I missed seeing the progress. When Denise posted some new stash she had bought I saw that we had the same scissor fob kit. I had purchased mine several months earlier and for some reason never had the incentive to start it. I commented on her blog maybe we should stitch it together. She emailed back we got to talking and decided to start it last week. Let me first tell you this will most likely be the shortest SAL in history. It really is a easy piece once I got started. We each will stitch on it one day a week and post our progress.

Here is what I got done this week:

It is Shepherd's Bush "Tiny Garden"

Here is what Denise has accomplished:

I am sure by next week we will have all the stitching done and then post the finishing the following week. I have never finished with the ribbon like this one so it will be interesting to see if it works or I try something else.

It is not the size of the SAL and the length it takes that matters, what matters is because of one small comment on a blog I have a new friend. As a little girl I always wanted a pen pal. Now with blogging I feel I have pen pals from all over the world (postage free).

Always keep love in your stitches,

PS: Don't forget to scroll down and enter my give away. It ends July 17 th.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

A Surprise Award

"I once had a rose named after me and I was flattered.
But I was not pleased to read the description in
the catalogue: no good in a bed, but fine up against a wall."
Eleanor Roosevelt

I was very flattered this week to have been picked by Ruth - Ruth's Running Stitch for a Stylish Blogger Award. Talk about a surprise. Thank you Ruth.

The rules are very simple:

1. Thank the person who has awarded you.
2. List seven things about yourself.
3. Pass  the award to 15 other stylish bloggers.

The seven things about me:

1. I met my husband while we were both clerks for the FBI.
2. I live in California but was born in Virginia.
3. I once attended one of Ellen's Christmas give away shows and took home lots of gifts.
4. My favorite season is fall and all it's color (even if we don't have them where I live).
5. I didn't start cross stitching until 6 years ago.
6. I live in So. Calif. and hate the beach and the heat.
7. I am one of those who wears Christmas Sweaters and shirts the whole month of December.

Now to give the award to 15 other stylish bloggers:

1. At Willow Tree Pond - Teresa
2. Confessions of a Serial Starter - Jennifer
3. Confessions of a Southern Stitcher - Pam
4. Crafty Moo - Sarah
5. Doll's Musings - Anne
6. Joanie's World - Joanie
7. Lainey's Stitching Hoose - Elaine
8. Plays with needles
9. Riverside Stitching - Denise
10. Stitching Dreams - Carol
11. The Stitching Lion - Bekca
12. The Twisted Stitcher - Vonna
13. To Stitch or Not To Stitch - Barbara
14. Tolentreasure - Cathy
15. With My Needle & Thread - Brenda

Thank you very much Ruth for considering my blog "Stylish".

Always keep love in your stitches,

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

My First Exchange

"For it is in giving that we receive."
St. Francis Assisi

I participated in my first stitching exchange and had a wonderful time doing so. We had a theme of either tea or picnic. We had to include a stitched item, a recipe and 5 additional items of our choice.

I stitched for Barbara -

This is what I sent in her package. My stitching piece was a needle/scissor holder. When reading her blog and seeing how much she liked lambs I couldn't resist on the back with her name putting a little lamb on.

The person who had me was Angela - I had to wait awhile to receive my package because it was coming from Canada and they had the mail strike. Let me tell you it was well worth the wait.

I couldn't wait to tear into all the packages to see what I received.

Can you see the fun polka dot scissors? There is fun polka dots on the cupcake fabric, I can see a fob in my future. She sent the most beautiful shades of red and blue over dyed threads. I love to cross stitch patriotic and can't wait to use them. There was also a cute pen and some needles. One cannot have too many needles. My stitched piece was  beautiful pillow. It means more to me than she even knows. It says "Tea for Two", and that is my parents song. My mom always sang it and I even learned to play it on the piano for them one Christmas. The pillow will always bring wonderful thoughts.

Lainey hosted our exchange and to say thank you I sent this package to her.

I made this tea pot bread cloth and she is going to use in on a shelf. What a fun Idea. I always like getting new ideas.

I have already signed up for the next summer exchange and am waiting somewhat patient for my next partner.

Monday, July 11, 2011

City Girl goes County

"God made the country,
and man made the town."
William Cowper

I don't have any stitching that I can show so I must tell you about my little outing this weekend. I live in the city, always have most likely always will. My brother many years ago moved about a half hour away to Chino. At the time it was a very large dairy community. Most of the farms have left but a few still remain. Their local high school still offers FFA Club (that's Future Farmers of America for you other city folks). My nephew joined last year. This year he raised a pig and is working on a two year project raising a cow. Friday evening was the Junior Livestock Auction. And my family who doesn't want to miss anything headed out with friends in full force to see the aution. The evening starts off with a delicious dinner of a big plate of beef and pork, beans, salad, rolls, ice cream and all the milk and chocolate milk you want.  All for $8.00 a plate.  After dinner my nephew took us outside to see his cow, Maggy Moo. It was a treat to see her since she doesn't go to auction until next year. At that time she will be with calf.
Here is Maggy Moo with my daughter, Jennifer. She said if you are going to an auction you need to dress the part. She really wants to date a cowboy or farmer, do you know any?

When the auctioning was about to start and my nephew was going to go be with his pig the last thing he said to us was don't embarress him by cheering when he came out. Well telling my family that is like telling the sun not to rise. There are several dairy owners and business people there who bid on all the animals so the kids can earn some money. We knew when it was time for our pig to come up to auction we had to make an impression so he would get more per pound for his pig. I should tell you the name of his pig, Christopher Periwinkle Bacon, that's Chris P. Bacon for short.
That evening there was 74 animals being auctioned from rabbits, lambs, goats, sheer, heifers and pigs. Pigs are always last and my nephew was 71. Just before he was about to come out this is what my family looked like.

I found some foam visors that were pig shaped for a dollar at the local Michael's. I bought what they had. We all cheered as he came out. The auctioneer said he brought his fan club with him. He said how can a kid go wrong with family support like this. Most pigs went for $2.75 to $3.25 per pound.

Here is Chris P. Bacon weighing in at 244 pounds. He went for $3.50 per pound. The kids have to buy their piglet and all the food for it. They get to keep all the money their animal earns at auction.

Well that is my little trip into county life. Anyone hungry for some bacon?

Always keep love in your stitches,

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Look what I got!

"It is through kindness and compassion
that hearts connect and friendship begins."
Bonnie Jensen

I have been so fortunate lately in the give away department. I just have to show off what I have received.

First from Michelle - Michelle's Stitchcraft Place I won a chart. She went to a car boot sale (I just love that. After some British research I found out what that was) and  bought this chart and came home and already has it. Raise your hand if you have done that. (I currently have 2 patterns for LHN Book Store) Her mistake was my gain.

I could really picture using just part of this chart on maybe a scissor fob.

Next in the mail I received from Barbara - To Stitch or not to Stitch this lovely set of homemade gifts.

A large zippered bag, small bag maybe to used as a ORT container, matching needle book, cute pin cushion she put into a tin and decorated it, a biscornu, black silk thread, pink linen and a pen.  They all just happen to be in my favorite color pink.
Can you see the wonderful bead work on this biscornu?

To end the afternoon yesterday this package arrived from Ellen - With my needle.

Can you believe this set. It came with the two boxes, the lining material, ruler/thread holder and some thread wax (ok I'll be honest I have never used thread wax, not sure how or why). I am going to have to think about getting some pretty linen and move this up on the list of things to do.

A big THANK YOU to these 3 generous ladies. What a week this has been.

I did manage to sew my tote bag with my "Needlework School". It is a large size tote to fit a piece that would be on scroll bars. I use to put them in a pillow case if I took them somewhere.
On the inside on both sides I sewed in some pockets about 7 inches deep. The whole bag is about 18 x20 inches.

Well that's about it for now. I will next tell you what this city girl did to feel a little more country.
Don't forget to enter my give away just one post down.

Always keep love in your stitches,

Friday, July 8, 2011

Thank You Give Away

"Hem your blessings with thankfulness
so they don't unravel."
Arthur Unknown

I have been truly blessed with friendships I have developed in the wonderful land of blogging.  Each of your comments have meant the world to me. My goal is to be better at answering them personally. I have learned so much and have tried new things from your blogs. I would like to say thank you with a give away.

I am offering this notebook cover made from a "Lizzy Kate" pattern. There will be other surprises added to the give away. I want to try and make the surprises fit the person who wins.

The rules are very simple, you must be a follower (new or old).
Please leave a comment on this post only.
I post the winner on Monday July 18th so you must post before midnight July 17th.

"I would thank you from the bottom of my heart,
but for you my heart has no bottom."
Arthur Unknown

Always keep love in your stitches,

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

I need some help.

"Our best thoughts
come from other's"
Ralph Waldo Emerson

Every year our church women's group holds a Christmas tea. You can volunteer to host a table for ten. You as host will decorate your table any way you wish. I just love hosting a table and start planning my decor shortly after the tea is finish for the next year.  I like to give each one at my table a small gift that I have cross stitched.  I bought dishes last year on sale to use and they say Peace, Joy, and Noel on them. I would like to give each guest a little scissor fob. I found red and green scissors on sale at Hobby Lobby and now need to come up with an idea that is not too bad to make 10 of. While looking at blogs I clicked onto another blog which lead me to another one (ok have I lost you) that was hosting a give away and showed some suggestions, well I did think enough in advance to copy the picture but not the blog.  Here is the picture I copied, sorry I can not give you credit.

Is anyone familiar with this pattern? Was it a freebie somewhere? Are do you have anything like it I could borrow. Any help would be appreciated.

In a couple of days I will be posting a give away so stayed tuned.

News Update:
Sarah at Craftymoo found me a picture of the pattern, It is from a old Better Homes and Garden. Thank you so much, you bloggers are wonderful!

Always keep love in your stitches,

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Happy 4th of July

Blessed is the nation where
GOD is the LORD.
Psalm 33.:12

I hope everyone in the states is enjoying our freedom and this wonderful county. I have been so fortunate in my life to travel and visit most of our states and each time I am just so amazed at all there is to see and do. On this last trip I got to cross off my bucket list to see Mt Rushmore. What amazed me was out of the 400 workers who built it not one of them lost their lives.

I have always loved anything red, white & blue, and have decorated my son's old room in those colors. I love to wear those colors and you have seen me stitch several patriotic theme pieces. I love that my birthday is July 2nd and have always grown up with the house all decorated in grand American style. This weekend as we all celebrate no matter how small or large remember our freedoms and those who have given their lives for that freedom.

Yesterday I received a fun package from Pam, Confessions of a Southern Stitcher. She really spoiled me for my birthday.

She made me this beautiful book. Here is a picture of what the inside looks like, sorry I can't make it go the right way.

She included some fun pins and needles and not one but two new kits that include silk threads. This is my first time with silk.

She passed along this pattern that she had made with some linen and cute pearl buttons. I think passing on patterns you have used and will not again is a wonderful idea. Have you seen a pattern I have used that you would want to trade for? I think recycling them and passing them on to someone else would be a fun way to see them used instead of sitting in a box somewhere. Let me know if you want to trade.

Always keep love in your stitches,

Friday, July 1, 2011

End Of A Journey

"There is nothing like staying
at home for real comfort."
Jane Austin

I really enjoyed my travels but after 4166 miles there really is no place like home. I mentioned that in Fargo I had only 20 minutes to shop in the Nordic Needle before it closed, well this is how much damage I can do in such a short time.

I like to do Mill Hill kits but I find the frames are too expensive. These two were only $5.00 each. The two pendants kits come with the pendants lets see if I can make them since they are so small. I thought at $7.00 each that wasn't too bad. And yes if you follow my blog you will see I have 2 new pairs of scissors. What can I say I have an addiction.

I did manage to go to one thrift store. I thought this chart might make some cute little scissor fobs.

I love little dishes so I could not pass up the blue one. If you are saying you showed the one in the back already, no I didn't it was one just like it. I now have two. I don't know why but I just needed it.

I also got a fun trip to the Hobby Lobby. I am afraid to say but all small scissors were 40% off. I won't even show you how many of those I got. I do like to give scissors and a fob as a gift and I knew they would come in handy. I also found this fun fat rick rack 50% off. I could not decide on what colors to get especially since I didn't know what I use them for but for $1.49 a spool I knew I needed three.

This is my finish piece that is one thread off. We stopped for lunch in Casper, Wyoming and a quilt shop was across the street so I took my piece in to match some material. I think I am going to make it into some kind of tote bag.
I left off the part about Mrs Ross and Penn. and changed the coloring of the lettering.

The last day of the trip I make this piece in the car. Yes I even did the bead work, and no I didn't spill any.

It was a wonderful trip and I am glad to be home. I will close with my little corn cob baby I made at the Laura Ingalls Homestead. Is this a face only a mom could love.

Always keep love in your stitches,