Monday, December 31, 2007


I reached so many milestones in 2007, I kinda hate to see it end. I celebrated my 50th birthday; achieved my goal weight; reached Lifetime status with WeightWatchers; walked 39 miles in my 5th Avon Walk for Breast Cancer; was promoted at work and increased my charities; saw the youngest grandbaby start kindergarten (better stop calling him a baby); got my Mom settled in a senior community where she has lots of companionship; displayed my crafts in a "real" shop; and cheered as both daughters became very independent young ladies. Of course with all this good came some sad like losing my Uncle Ed to kidney disease.

With all that under my belt, I have high hopes for 2008. My only resolution is to continue my quest to fulfill God's purpose and live my best life. I am thankful for all those I have met here and the talent that's been displayed and shared. I'm anxious to see what y'all have in store for next year (lol). I'll close the year with a pic of my current project - a knitted scarf & glove set using Uruguay DK - a marino, alpaca, silk blend yarn in a wonderful shade of grape.

O.k. - the mimosas are waiting along with the Greys Anatomy 3rd season DVD, so I'll wish everyone a safe & HAPPY NEW YEAR.

Monday, December 24, 2007


Reason for the Season

Twas the month before Christmas
When all through our land,
Not a Christian was praying
Nor taking a stand.

Why the Politically Correct Police had taken away,
The reason for Christmas - no one could say.
The children were told by their schools not to sing,
About Shepherds and Wise Men and Angels and things.

It might hurt people's feelings, the teachers would say
December 25th is just a "Holiday".
Yet the shoppers were ready with cash, checks and credit
pushing folks down to the floor just to get it!

But as Targets were hanging their trees upside down
At Lowe's the word Christmas - was no where to be found.
At K-Mart and Staples and Penny's and Sears
You won't hear the word Christmas; it won't touch your ears.

At the top of the Senate, there arose such a clatter
To eliminate Jesus, in all public matter.
And we spoke not a word, as they took away our faith
Forbidden to speak of salvation and grace.

The true Gift of Christmas was exchanged and discarded
The reason for the season, stopped before it started.
Choose your words carefully, choose what you say
Shout MERRY CHRISTMAS, not Happy Holiday.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Memaw's Motto

Quick and fun design from Waxing Moon Designs. I changed the color pallette and used my favorite pillow covers as the finish. The heck with Vegas - my grandboys will choose Memaw's house anytime.......

Friday, November 23, 2007

Black Friday

O.K., I have to admit today is one of my favorite days. It's gotten a bad rap over the years - mainly from eager shoppers who have temporarily forgotten their "home training" (please, thank you, excuse me, etc)........ But, for me - the shopper extraordinaire - it's a day of deals & squeals.

This year I decided to forego the 4 a.m. line outside of Walmart for a couple hours more sleep. My first stop 6:00 a.m. at Michaels (surprised?) netted the Ott Light I've been stalking. Michaels's retails it for $59.99 & regularly puts it on sale for 40% off. But today - while supplies last - it was $19.99 plus an extra 25% off! Selected, paid for, & on my way to the next store within 5 minutes. The look on my daughters face was priceless - she stayed in the car cause she knows how I am in any craft or needlework store.

Next was Target where it was a bit more daunting. Movies $3.98 (check), games $9.98 (check), Playstation Portable w/5 movie bundle $169.99 (no check). Three Target stores later we gave up on the PSP and headed to Gamestop that had one without the movie bundle option. Oh well - grandson's not interested in movies, just the games. Mission completed.

After a quick nap (I must be getting really old), I spent the afternoon working on Beachcomber Tunic. Here's some progress pics:

Six more crocheted rows on the front & it's on to the sleeves.

Hope everyone enjoyed a blessed Thanksgiving Day.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Handmade Pledge

I Took The Handmade Pledge!

I prefer to say "handcrafted" instead of "handmade" but heck - it's all good..... click on the button & make your pledge today!

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Extraordinary Quilting

Last month I shared the art-quilt wall hangings from my Aunt. She is so supportive of me and my efforts to promote the beauty of handcrafted gifts this season in the gift shop. She introduced me to her fellow quilting guild member - Sandra. Sandra is an avid quilter who makes all-things-quilted but specializes in baby quilts, lap quilts, and Quillows. If you're not familiar with quillows (I sure wasn't) - they are quilts with a pocket that enables the quilt to convert to a pillow. Especially great for traveling! Just the concept is fascinating to me but take a look at these:

Absolutely beautiful! You know my heart & soul is forever drawn to "stitches of heritage" so the african inspired themes are my favorites. But there's something for everyone so I also chose the Black Barbie quillow and a cute school theme (perfect for boys).

Of course the hard part is choosing which ones to put in the shop and which will be gifts for my friends & family (lol)! I've always been fascinated with quilting but there aren't enough hours to finish my own stitching to-do list - so thank goodness for Sandra who I'll probably have on speed dial! I'll leave you with more pics of the quilting stash - couldn't say no to the lap quilts........ the angel quilt has the lyrics to Amazing Grace on one side & the Ten Commandments on the other - how perfect!

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

Spiritual Progress

I just love this time of year. The change in weather is my cue to pour over the pattern stash in search of the perfect holiday gift to make for loved ones and the perfect hat, scarf, or sweater to make for ME! But before my thoughts go crazy -I'm working to finish up some WIPs. Here's where I am on Southern Roots' Spiritual by Jeanne Bowers - it's done as a pillow cover and about 95% complete. I'm shooting to finish it this weekend.

My knitting mojo is also in full swing. I'm working on the Beachcomber Tunic again and I'm about 30% finished. Since it's a spring sweater, I'm not in a rush but definitely have it in rotation so there will be some decent pics soon. Also working on Leisure Arts Sampler Afghan. It's 60 pattern stitches - you choose 20 of them to design your own unique afghan. I'm only on the 4th square, but I'm enjoying the variety.

No knitting mojo is complete without new stash. My favorite man (the mailman) brought me a lovely package yesterday. It's the Uruguay DK on sale at Little Knits. A blend of merino, alpaca & silk with a full-bag price I couldn't resist. I fell for this beautiful purple as well as a khaki that can be used together or separately.

Let me go make some plans..........

Friday, October 26, 2007

Rain, Rain - Go Away

Today was the first day of the Ft. Myer Craft Bazaar. It's my first bazaar of the season (WAHOO!)& although the rain kept folks away, I really enjoyed browsing (and buying) from the other vendor tables. My favorite was probably my neighbor who breaks & torches glass (wine bottles, vases, etc) & creates beautiful necklaces, earrings, and pins. Who knew broken glass could be so beautiful. Here are pics of my table displays. Tomorrow is Family Day with lots of activities planned so hopefully the sun will make an appearance.........

Monday, October 22, 2007

Best Vacation

Last week was the best of all worlds - I had a week-long vacation & I spent most of the time stitching. Of course, that means I have pics to share......

This was a housewarming gift for my daughter's friends. She wanted to give them something unusual so I combined her words with a mix of patterns. They got a kick out of the figures - he has dreadlocks & she has a bob so I tried to capture their styles (lol). Can't even remember where I got the aida - the border was so nice, didn't need a matte for the frame.

As I was browsing Hobby Lobby I found this pre-striped aida from DMC (hope you can see the pink stripes). What a good idea - there are about a half dozen pre-printed designs. I selected the stripe to compliment this chart I picked up last spring in Metairie, LA. The pink & green combo is perfect for the AKA sorority event I'm doing in November.

And I can almost remove this from my WIP list - it's the potholder I started sometime last year. Few more fill-in stitches and I'm done.

Monday, October 08, 2007

Family of Stitches

My Aunt Winnie is an extremely talented quilter. For years I have admired her vision and skill in designing quilts and wall hangings. This past weekend she visited me with a few of her quilted wallhangings. Although she does not normally sell her creations, she provided these one-of-a-kind wallhangings for sale in the shop.

I remain in awe of her talent and grateful for the family that I was born into that is so loving, sharing, and thoughtful. Although I'm still years away from retirement and my dream of a shop of my own, my current opportunities in the giftshop are teaching me things that ensure my own success in the future.

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

From WIP to FO

by Forever in My Heart
Stitched on 14-count White Birch Aida with 2 ply Silk 'N Colors

Can't believe I started this well over a year ago (August 2006) and just getting it done. Love the design and the sentiment. The leaves put me in an autumn mood. Not quite sure whether the final finish will be framed with a complimentary matte or stitched up as a pillow. Will keep you posted.

Been catching up on my blog watch & y'all are doing some fantastic work. Inspiring me to get to the next project! Be blessed!

Monday, September 24, 2007

Blowing the Dust Off!

Wow - It's been so long, it's only appropriate to hang out the Welcome towel. This is my latest finish & one of the first items in my shop display. Been super busy between the "real" job (pays the bills) and the "fun" job (feeds the soul). I have other progress pics to show & I promise to be back soon. Gotta catch up on all my blog favorites too......

Sunday, August 26, 2007

Pillow Finish

Better Homes & Gardens
Alphabet Heart Freebie
Charles Craft Pillow Sham
DMC Floss #115

Thursday, August 23, 2007

My Goodies

Back from yet another business trip to New Orleans. Don't think I'll ever tire of the city. Of course no trip is complete without a visit to Acadian Corner in Metairie. And once again the stash enhancement experience (s.e.x.) did not disappoint.

Lots of charts on sale (making room for new stock), so I got Bent Creek's Glory; Never Forget by Jeanette Crews Designs; and Gabriel the Messenger from Stoney Creek. Fabric choices were the Twilight 100% Linen, Blue Whisper Cashel Linen, and Plum Blossom Jobelan. As if that wasn't enough, the mailman left me a bundle while I was gone - Baby Georgia cotton yarn that I ordered from Little Knits. I'm so in love with their 10-skein bundles. The colors are sienna red, dark chocolate, and corn silk yellow that would make a beautiful striped something.

My favorite thing from Acadian Corner has to be this Damask square. Pic isn't the greatest but look close & you'll see a small circle in the middle for stitching. The owner suggested making it into a pillow...... what do you think?

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Been Gone Too Long

It's August already? Summer has been fantastic.

My master plan includes opening a gift shop after retirement (featuring handcrafted inventory - of course!) and I've been blessed with an opportunity to try some things out. A friend has a beautiful, quaint giftbasket store & offered me display space in exchange for marketing/advertising advice & running the shop on Saturdays. Definitely a win-win situation for both of us. Here are a couple pics of the shop - isn't it great?

The best part of the whole deal is that every Saturday I take along projects to work on when I don't have customers (lol), so I'm consistently crafting! My display will focus on cross-stitched handtowels, pillows, bookmarks, ornaments, and framed pieces along with handpainted figurines, angels & santas that I love to do. Figure I'll be ready to setup the display shortly after Labor Day so stay tuned for pics.

In the meantime, I've finished the back of the Beachcomber Tunic and most of the left side. Here are my progress pics....

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Tunic Progress

Almost at the back neckline of Beachcomber - then on to the crochet bottom edging......yeah!! It's been ages since I've completed a sweater and can't remember making one for me. Consistently made sweaters for my girls as they were growing up, but you know the story...... by their teen years they preferred sweaters, caps & scarves from Gap, Old Navy & Guess to handcrafted "Mommy Gear". Now that they're grown, I have a long list of requests. But they'll just have to wait in line!

Saturday, July 21, 2007

Beachcomber Tunic

I have my own little min-rotation going. Splitting my time between knitting the Beachcomber Tunic from Interweave Crochet's spring issue and cross stitching M Designs Rejoice Tree ornament. Here's my progress pic of the tunic back. Excited to finish the knitted part so I can see how the crochet edging will complement it. I'm substituting the recommended yarn with Crystal Palace's Cotton Flamme. Loving the texture!

Y'all know I love a sale & what could be better than something knitted on sale. I picked up this Cable Knit Hobo Bag from Old Navy today. On clearance - it was $8.99! I couldn't knit one for that price. We're talking fully lined with wallet & cell phone compartments. The strap is short but perfect to carry around my projects. They carry it online (it's on sale there too) & it's made from a combination of paper straw & cotton - whatever....... it's sturdy.

I finally have a couple of days off, so I'll be back with pics of Rejoice ornament as soon as I finish a couple more letters.

Friday, July 13, 2007

Stitching Cruise

Stitchers Aweigh Cruise - Sponsored by Accents, Inc (New Orleans LNS).
October 11 - 15; Sailing from New Orleans to Cozomul, Mexico on Carnival Cruise Line.
Stitching Room available during the day.
Goodie bags, fun & surprises throughout the week.

PACKIN' MY BAGS!...............

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

WIP & Stash

Killing 2 (or 3) birds with one stone last week - traveled to New Orleans for business, visited with daughter & attended Essence Festival. Suprisingly enough I actually worked on my Rejoice Tree (thanks to a 3 hour flight delay). It's coming along nicely & I can't wait to add the seed beads to make it sparkle.

Of course no trip to New Orleans is complete without an excursion to my favorite home-away-from-home LNS Acadian Corner. In addition to the new Mirabilia Design "Daisy" (is it just me or does the absence of facial features seem weird?), I picked up a 28 count opalescent raw linen, a hand dyed jobelan called "Thyme" (beautiful with the Dark Forest Silk 'N Colors floss), a lilac linen & a sandstone linen. And for my angel fix, I picked up Lizzie Kate's "Angel's Work" chart.

Even managed a quick trip to the local Michaels. Headed straight to the clearance section where I got a small project organizer ($7) & floss keepers ($2). Not long ago I stocked up on those photo totes from Bed, Bath & Beyond - not knowing what I could do with them - but hey they were $3.99!! Well, spotted the 14 count perforated paper & the lil lightbulb came on: why not stitch inserts instead of using pics? Maybe a small angel & inspirational words or something. Sounds like a plan!!!!! Hopefully I'll finish the tree by my next post............. happy stitching y'all.

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

The Big 50

Yesterday was my 50th birthday and as many have attested - it's a major milestone. I'm blessed to believe this is the halfway mark of life & I have much to be grateful for:

- My girls are grown and living on their own;
- I have 2 intelligent/healthy grandkids;
- my Mom is retired and living carefree;
- I am in good health and my faith is strong.

I also have much to look forward to. I finished reading "50 Things To Do When You Turn 50" and was very moved by the following excerpt:

"For a woman turning 50, the challenge is to move beyond living for and through others and focus more on oneself. If you have spent the first five decades of your life graduating from being someone's daughter to being someone's girlfriend to being someone's wife to being someone's mother and then grandmother, this can be a joyous time of discovery - a time in life to figure out what it would mean to be someone in your own right. You are not being selfish or irresponsible; you are reaching for wholeness."

I am sooooo ready for the next 50 years!

Wednesday, June 20, 2007


Actually have a couple of reasons to rejoice.

First, here's the framed piece I did for my mom. Couldn't believe the frame was on sale at Target for $2.58....... what a bargain & how perfect for the piece! I gave it to her for Father's Day (she was the initial Supermom for brother & me). It's very special cause it signifies she has a new home - not just a new apartment.

My second reason to rejoice is my current linen project. I've started M Design's REJOICE ornament tree. Chose a hand dyed linen - 28 count - from Acadian Corner in Metairie, LA. I've completed the first E stitching "over 1" instead of "over 2" - something else new for me but I'm loving it. Somehow it seems easier on the hands (but not on the eyes). I promise I'm moving away from the earthtones for my next project, but hey - that's what always catches my eye.

Please take as minute to jump over to my friend Crystal's new blog & welcome her. She's new to blogland but not to stitching.........

Monday, June 11, 2007

At Last.....A Happy Dance

All I needed was the feel of the needle in my hand to get my mojo back. This is a freebie from Glory Bee Designs completed on Heatherfield White Birch. Sorry couldn't get it placed straight on the scanner but you get the idea. Will mat & frame it this week as a gift to my mom who just moved to a senior retirement community after living in the same house for 33 years. We thought it would be traumatic but she's settling in very nicely. Between the jazzercise classes, bid whist card games, parties & picnics - her social calendar is more full than mine. Enjoy it mom - you deserve it.
On to the next project!! By the way - time just flew by! My one year blog anniversary was at the end of May........ don't even remember stitching life before the blog.

Friday, June 08, 2007

Worldwide Knit In Public (WWKIP) Day

June 9th is WWKIP Day. You can go here WWKIPDAY to get all the details but hey - who needs details????? Just do your thing!

I plan to spend most of the day manning my friend's giftshop so what better way to spend the downtime than working on the tunic that I've been neglecting.

In other stitching news, last week I actually picked up a needle & linen and started a quick stitch project. It felt so good to get back to something I love so much. Hope to have pics real soon.

Monday, May 14, 2007

Knit & Crochet Happiness

This is one of those times I'm happy I learned to both knit and crochet. The spring issue of Interweave Crochet has this beautiful summer tunic that is a combination of knit with crochet edging.

Think I'll use the Crystal Palace Cotton Flamme yarn I bought awhile ago. It's a beautiful coral color that will look great for spring. Of course that means I have to finish it in time to wear for spring............

Tonight was the Stitch-N-Pitch baseball game sponsored by the Washington Nationals MLB team. I bought my ticket months ago with high hopes but wasn't able to leave work in time to attend. What a great concept: bring you needlework project (cross stitch, embroidery, knit, crochet, etc) and stitch the night away during the game. If anyone is familiar (they supposedly have them scheduled all across the country), please let me know how it went. Maybe I can travel up the road for Stitch-n-Pitch with the Orioles.