Monday, December 29, 2008

Christmas

is over and we had a lovely, quiet time. The weather has been cold and that has given me an opportunity to get some work done. I finished a beginner class on quilting that I will be teaching on Shirley's Learning FA group. This class will take place in February and it is free. I also pieced and quilted a commission quilt for the daughter of a friend who has graduated college, as well as finished up a few of my swap blocks. So, I am all up todate with most projects.

The last two days, when the weather warmed up, I went walking on the lake. Once in a while you can hear "drumming", which is the water moving under the lake, but the lake is frozen so there is no danger... lots of ski-doos and ice fishers around. This picture on the right is looking towards where I live - I live around the bend to the right.

The picture below is looking out towards the lake, the widest part.









The final picture is looking towards my house as I am coming back from my walk. It feels funny to be taking a picture of my home from about 20 feet out on the lake.....

Thought for the Day
Stand here by my side and turn, I pray,
On the lake below thy gentle eyes;
The clouds hang over it, heavy and gray,
And dark and silent the water lies;
And out of that frozen mist the snow
In wavering flakes begins to flow;
Flake after flake,
They sink in the dark and silent lake.
William Cullan Bryant

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Happy....


Christmas Eve... and a Merry Christmas to everyone! The cold has finally let up a bit so we should have a chance to go for a bit of a walk today. I am finishing quilting my Ornament Block quilt and just "putzing" around the house today. I wish everyone a blessed, joyous Christmas.....
Head on over to my friend Shirley's Blog, she has a post about Christmas Eve memories... and a beautiful photo of one of her quilts.
One of my fondest Christmas Eve memories is when I was a young child. My sister is 6 years younger than me, and she "believed" in Santa longer than I did (well, I actually still believe in Santa!). One year after we came home from Midnight Mass, I got to put out her Santa gifts, after she went to bed. She was receiving handmade Barbie doll furniture, made from redwood. It was the cutest little set - handmade blankets with the bunk beds, and little hangers in the wardrobe. She was so excited Christmas morning... I could hardly sleep waiting for her to get up!! When we had our family dinner last week, I brought up that Christmas and she said it was one of her best Christmas memories. Her adult daughter still has the doll furniture.
My favorite memories of Christmas with my children are filling Christmas stockings. My kids think that is the best part of Christmas and still can't wait to open their stockings. About a month ago, my son called and in the course of our conversation blurted out, "We still get our Christmas stockings, right"???
Last Christmas Eve day we had a traumatic event in our household. Our little Boston Terrier, Tooie woke up and couldn't breathe. At four o'clock in the morning on Christmas Eve day we were rushing to the vet. Tooie stopped breathing before we left and I performed CPR (DO NOT ask me how I did this, as I believe Angels guided me through the whole thing!). We got to the vet and found out he had a collapsed trachea caused by an elongated soft palette. He spent the day in the doggie ER and came home that evening. He did have to have surgery earlier in the year and seems to be doing better..... We are blessed and thankful to have our little Tooie still in our lives.
Merry Christmas
Thought for the Day
In the end, only kindness matters.
Jewel

Monday, December 22, 2008

This morning......

was absolutely beautiful... although very cold! As I drove to work the temperature was -39 degrees celsuis (which is -38.2 F) and my tires were like big stones - felt like I was driving a Flinstones car!!! As I came over the crest of a small hill, the sun was beginning to rise in the East and there was a blanket of cloud settled in a farmer's field over the snow...... just so incredibly beautiful. I wish I had a picture to show you.... I thanked God for such a spectacular day....

Thought for the Day
"The moon on the breast of the new-fallen snow gave the lustre of midday to objects below"
Clement Moore

Sunday, December 21, 2008

I'm so thankful......

I received the most wonderful present from my dear "mom" Shirley - it is absolutely spectacular and I am so grateful for her kindness. Shirley does wonderful landscapes, as well as having a Yahoo group that gives free classes in quilting...... Along with this landscape, there was a handmade quilt holder... very innovative and great for storage. I also received some wonderful thread.... and other Christmas goodies..... I am blessed indeed to have Shirley as my second "mom".

While I was in Calgary, I went to shop at my favorite quilt store, Traditional Pastimes.... AND they had a sale on Christmas fabrics.... well, what's a quilter to do.... I bought myself a new Christmas pattern for next year plus some great new fabrics... This will be my 2009 Christmas quilt...... I will have to update my UFO list for 2009 pretty soon.... I have lots of things I haven't put on there.

My new friend, Jennifer, from Bronze Wombat, has a great tutorial on how to make the folded star patchwork trivet....I have always wanted to make one of these and now I can.... it would be great for Valentine's day or even Easter...Great Job, Jennifer.
Thought for the Day
"It is required of every man," the ghost returned, "that the spirit within him should walk abroad among his fellow-men, and travel far and wide; and, if that spirit goes not forth in life, it is condemned to do so after death".
A Christmas Carol, Charles Dickens

Be Careful....



what you wish for - LOL.... Well, after being stranded for 3 days in Calgary - I am home.... but oh boy, is it ever cold. It was -35 celsius when I woke up this morning... and so much for moaning about not having snow awhile back. This is the view from my sewing room this morning...

There had been a terrible snow storm in Calgary over the past few days... and while I had a great visit with family and friends.... we couldn't do too much because of the weather. Magpie and Tooie loved gramma's fireplace tho.... and didn't stray far from that!

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Help from my Blogland friends.......

Please help the Boston Terrier Club of Canada Rescue win $10,000.00!!!. Boston Terriers are near and dear to my heart and I have been involved with Rescue for a few years. Needless to say we are always in the "red".... BUT I am not asking for money, or for you to buy anything. All I am asking my bloggy friends to do is to CLICK HERE...... and vote for Boston Terrier Club of Canada Rescue.....You can also use the button on the right sidebar....thank you in advance for your holiday spirit!

Thought for The Day
There is no religion without love, and people may talk as much as they like about their religion, but if it does not teach them to be good and kind to other animals as well as humans, it is all a sham.
Anna Sewell

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Swap Etiquette...

I had read the best post about swap etiquette and I searched and searched again, for it.... you know, when you find these things you just have to put a link somewhere so that you can refer to it!!! I found it again..... Calamity Kim has written a great post..... if you like to swap, please, take a moment to read it.
I have been very fortunate to be involved in some great swaps.... and I have hostessed a few in my time too. This article says everything I have ever wanted to say!!!

Thought for the Day
He knows when you are sleeping,
He knows when you're awake
He knows if you've been bad or good
So, be good for goodness sake!
Santa Claus is Coming to Town

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Come on in......

I thought I would show some of my decorations and how I decorate with my Christmas quilts. I put up most of my quilts on the railing in my house... it gives a good view.









Over the years I have seem to have collected a few snowmen! - they are being watched over by two Santa's in the corner!





This is another snowman that I just love - the little quilt underneath is a cathedral windows that I did a few years ago.




This last picture shows Santa and his elves... and behind Santa is a special little Boston Terrier that spent some time with us last year. Her name was Bubbles... and she now lives in Saskatoon with her new adoptive family.

Thought for the Day
The rooms were very still while the pages were softly turned and the winter sunshine crept in to touch the bright heads and serious faces with a Christmas greeting.
Louisa May Alcott

Monday, December 8, 2008

Some Sewing....

I did some sewing during the weekend and put together my ornament blocks from the ornament swap that was hosted by Betsy. This actually turned out a bit larger than I thought, but I did add a few of my own blocks. I found just the best border fabric at Craft Connection AND I got it about a week after I ordered it - which is really great considering the time of year. Thanks to all the ladies who participated.





I also have one more block finished in my wool applique rendition of the quilt, Chestermere. This is the third block. I find that I enjoy having a hand project to work on at guild or at night when I am watching TV, so it might not take too long to get a good sized quilt made. The background fabrics are homespun.. so this quilt will be very very prim.

LET IT SNOW....

well, this is our third day house bound... the weather is definitely wintry now!!!! I have to go to town tomorrow.. so let's hope it lets up. This first picture is of the road going to our house on Saturday....we went for a walk and it looked like we were the only ones around.



Hubby went into the woods, as we were walking along, to get me a few sticks to hang some quilts - they work out quite well, remove the bark and slip them in the quilt sleeve!!! recycling at its best.

I did some baking over the weekend and wrapped up the last of my gifts. I can spend the rest of the week just catching up on some sewing projects.



Thought for the Day
I think my favorite sport in the Olympics is the one in which you make your way through the snow, you stop, you shoot a gun, and then you continue on. In most of the world, it is known as the biathlon, except in New York City, where it is known as winter.
Michael Ventre

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Some Thank you's.....

Just have to share a couple of things that I received in the mail this week. The first is a great quilted trivit - I received this (among other things - LOL) in a Christmas swap on one of the lists I belong to. It is just the greatest colors! Thanks, Evelyn.


I also received a little parcel from Jennifer in Australia!! Look at these great fabrics.... I am going to have to make something extra special just for me with these.... the chocolate stays in my sewing room... just for me !!!




Thought for the Day
"Dear George, remember no man is a failure who has friends. Thanks for the wings, Love Clarence. "
It's a Wonderful Life

Stash Alert......

I got these great Christmas fabrics in the mail yesterday... they look even better in person. I purchased the ornament fabric especially as a border for the blocks that I exchanged in my ornament block swap. I think they will go great with these.... and the sparkly red fabric just might be a great back for the wallhanging.

After seeing my friend, Betsy, make all those great Christmas tea towels... I had to make some too.... Monkey see, Monkey do!!!! Mine are a little more prim....
It is snowing madly today..... and I am finishing customer quilts... and some of my own stuff. I doubt if I will be venturing out much today...

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

It's the Most Wonderful Time.......

of the Year... Happy December to all. I received THE LAST of my civil war print 9 patches today.... ..... guess I will have to decide now what to make. I have also been receiving blocks in another swap and used the same theme - civil war prints... so I am almost at the end of that swap also. Below is my November block that I received... is it a coincidence that this coordinates so well with my nine patch?? Maybe I should combine the two sets of blocks, alternating a block and a nine patch. I will try that out and see what it looks like.






We have extremely cold weather but no snow. This weather lends itself to a interesting condition in/on the lake that people around here call "the drumming of the lake". The lake makes these incredible "noises", much like whales. Apparently it is the ice and water moving against each other underneath the water. I have never heard of this and if anyone else has heard of it please let me know. But, it is the most spectacular sound - and when it is dark and cold.... it is kind of eerie.

I spent the day quilting and sewing, and wrapping up Christmas presents. My sewing room is a mess... but that's OK - I just close the door and nobody sees it.

Thought for the Day
I have heard there are troubles of more than one kind.
Some come from ahead and some come from behind.
But I've bought a big bat. I'm all ready you see.
Now my troubles are going to have troubles with me!
Dr. Seuss

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Happy....


last day of November!!!! Well, tomorrow the countdown to Christmas begins.... I finished my two prim santa's - ready to go????. well, that's a secret!

A special thank you to Lori.... she is a sweetie - she knows why!... and I am sure lots of you know it! She has a great Etsy shop, too; so, if you need any special gifts for Christmas, make sure to stop by her shop.

I participate in a lot of swaps and have been pretty privileged and lucky to meet some great people. Every once in a while, tho, someone doesn't come through, and I just put it down to bad timing. I have been reading a lot about this lately, as there seems to be an abundance of swaps going on in "blogland". So, my thought for today is for those of you who just don't bother to come through and who just don't care if you do. You are missing out!

Thought for the Day
You can never do wrong when you do right.
Rabbi Shmuley

Friday, November 28, 2008

Christmas memory....


I was driving to work this morning and it was slightly colder than usual. A mist of cloud was hanging over a field, as I drove up over the hill, and I thought of Christmases past.
When my son was young, about 6 or so, he always wore some sort of hat or cap. Starting about October he usually started wearing his santa hat. He also got lots of comments about it..... but he always used to just smile and not say too much. I thought he looked adorable, of course. When he was around 12 and in Grade 7 he stopped wearing his santa hat.... I guess it's just too hard to be a teenager and be different at the same time. I thought about him today and smiled remembering his red Santa Hat.
Tonight I am watching the first of my Christmas movies. It is a newer movie, but will become an old favorite - Polar Express.
Thought for the Day
Always show the you in you that makes you the you that you are
Chidinma Obietikponah

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Tooie the Boston Terrier wants to play.....

this poor old quilt- LOL
video

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Nine Patch....

Today I received two blocks in my nine patch swap. I have one more month to complete in this swap and I will have enough blocks for a great quilt. My theme was civil war prints and I am really excited about putting this together.

The swapper, Becki, also sent me a great vintage quilt block - it is a log cabin block from Gerald, Missouri and was the estate of a 90 year old woman. This block was purchased at an estate sale 9 years ago. I am so fortunate and blessed to be given this wonderful block, and I think it will look great framed.

I just want to take a moment to wish all of my American friends a wonderful Thanksgiving!

Thought for the Day
The minute you alter your perception of yourself and your future, both you and your future begin to change.
Marilee Zdenek

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

It's One Month....


till Christmas.... With our crazy weather and no snow - you wouldn't believe it in our part of the country. Today, I am working on a quilt that I was doing for my guild challenge. I am no longer part of this guild, but since I started it - I should finish. We were given paint chip cards and had to make a quilt from those colors... here is one of the blocks from mine. I have to make 4 more blocks like this... then decide on some sort of border. Yes!! it is paper piecing - honestly what was I thinking - LOL. PP is not my favorite, so I guess this really is a "challenge". The colors, also, are not something I would usually go with, again, a challenge. The end piece will be fairly small - about 48" X 48". I doubt if I will get all 4 done today, as I have to work this afternoon, but I will keep at it, as I am sooooo close.
Thought for The Day
Dreams are renewable. No matter what our age or condition, there are still untapped possibilities within us and new beauty waiting to be born.
Dale E. Turner

Monday, November 24, 2008

Happy Monday.....


Today I received 4 squishees in the mail. They are the remainder of my blocks in my ornament block swap, hosted by dear Betsy from Quilting Fiesta. Thanks to Teresa, Jenna, Treasa, and Rebecca. I received all my blocks on time and they are all just perfect. What more can you ask from a block swap!!!!!
If you would like to know how to make these blocks, click here.





I also did some quilting today to finish up a quilt. I just love quilting feathers and I had some real fun with this one. Over the weekend I finished up several smaller little projects that I wanted for Christmas presents. These are all done and I am quite happy to have these ready for gift giving. I want to concentrate on a couple of older UFO's that I have - my One Block Wonder and my Baltimore Bunnies.





Thought for the Day
People of high self-esteem are not driven to make themselves superior to others. They do not seek to prove their value by measuring themselves against a comparative standard. Their joy is being who they are, not in being better than someone else.
Nathaniel Branden

Saturday, November 22, 2008

'Tis the Season......


to finish another Christmas quilt that has been in the UFO pile this year. I am soooo happy to finish this one, as it is a favorite. It is called Reindeer Frolic, by N'eedllove. The white fabric is wool that I machine appliqued with a button hole stitch. The machine quilting is fairly simple, although I did over-quilt some snowflakes in the center with bronze metallic thread.
On Thursday night I was driving into town and I saw this.... I was completely scared out of my wits and really not sure exactly what I saw. When I got home later that evening the meteor shower was all over the news. It was breathtaking and a once-in-a-liftime opportunity for sure.... I am grateful for the chance to see such a sight!
I am working feverishly over the next few days to get all my Christmas prezzie's ready...... and then I can relax and enjoy the season.
Thought for the Day
It is not who you are that holds you back, it is who you think you are.
Author Unknown

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Another great...


Ornament Block received in my swap. This one is from Toni, The Quilting Pirate. I don't usually join block swaps, but I have enjoyed this one; perhaps it will get me into some more swaps!! Yes, I need more to do!!

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Quilting, Quilting.....

I have been sewing and quilting the last couple of days, because the weather has been cold. We don't have lots of snow but we have cold weather. A couple of Christmas's ago, I received a Christmas block in a Santa swap that I did..... I added some corner triangles and made the block into a pillow..... The block itself is completely handsewn and is lovely.




I also finished a Christmas present for a friend. It is not in Christmas colors, but I have had the fabric for about two years and wanted to make up the table runner. The fabric is actually redder that it is in the photo, and I am sure she will like it. I am busy getting cleaned up with lots of little things, sending out swaps, organizing little Christmasy type presents.


Thought for the Day
If you have zest and enthusiasm you attract zest and enthusiasm. Life does give back in kind.
Norman Vincent Peale

Monday, November 17, 2008

Wintery day....

well, now it does finally feel like Christmas!!!! This is the view out the door this afternoon - not too cold yet... but it's a'coming - LOL. The lake has finally frozen with a thin layer.....

My swap partner, Lindsay from England, gently pointed out that there should have been chocolate in my picture of the goodies I received from the Stocking Swap. Well.... technically there should have been.... but we ate them - LOL.... They were delicious....


With the cold snowy day, it was fitting that I received two more blocks in my ornament swap - these are from Betsy in Florida..... plus she sent me some Christmas coasters made from fabric... she's a sweetie, that's for sure.


Thought for the Day
The best way to cheer yourself up is to try to cheer somebody else up.
Mark Twain

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Christmas Swap........

I had a very productive weekend... a couple of customer quilts done and I finished a couple of my own projects..... Last week I received my Christmas Stocking Swap from Lindsay from England. It was hosted by Robin. Neither Lindsay nor I could wait until December, so we opened them up together.... Here's a peak at some of the goodies I received..



This stocking is made from burlap and is extremely huge..... The applique is sewn on with teeny little buttons. The picture above show the fabrics that she sent. The Christmas fabric is quite stunning and I doubt if I will be able to cut it up... I think I may make a table runner with it


The remainder of the parcel included the cutest little clothespins with little trees on them, a patchwork stamp... and well, you can see the remainder of the booty! What a great swapper Lindsay is..... and the best thing about this swap is that I have made a new friend in England!!



I came across a wonderful site today... Stitching Cow, and she is having a giveaway for her spectacular block of the month.... check the link on the side of my blog too.!

Thought for the Day
Failure is an event, not a person.Yesterday ended last night.
Zig Ziglar

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Ok, Ladies... help me out......

I think I had my first hot flash!!! This morning I was sitting sewing and all of a sudden my face got extremely hot - like it was on fire... I went and looked in the mirror and it was sort of red around my cheeks and nose... then both my arms got the same feeling from the elbow down, on the inside... and some red patches appeared in the crook of my arm. I kept checking to see if I was getting hives, cause I have had them before and it kind of felt creepy like that... but nothing... and after about 5-7 minutes it all stopped. My arms were a little pinkish for a few minutes longer... but nothing else.... Is that a hot flash... is this it???????

Moving right along...... I also finished up another UFO. I received the Follow Your Heart, Moda Tin Box Sampler last Christmas from hubby.. so I made it up yesterday.. sheesh (as a good friend of mine says all the time!!) - it measures 12.5 X 12.5... not something I usually do... here's a pic of it... Maybe I will make a pillow from it......cross another off the list!!!!
Thought for the Day (again)
I'm trying very hard to understand this generation. They have adjusted the timetable for childbearing so that menopause and teaching a sixteen-year-old how to drive a car will occur in the same week.
Erma Bombeck

Stitcher's Angel...



I participated in the Stitcher's Angel Swap on Hugs N Kisses blog. My stitcher's angel was Simona from Italy! and this is what she sent me..... I feel so fortunate to have had a great swap partner!! It doesn't always work out when you swap on the internet... and that can be disappointing... but most people are so honorable... . Thanks Simona! and thanks to Helen for hosting such a great swap.

Thought for the Day
Be honorable yourself if you wish to associate with honorable people.
Welsh Proverb

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

UFO'S and.......


I have had a busy week, but before I go on about my week, just a quick note to remember all those who have served our Country - Lest We Forget.

Yesterday I received my quilt from ALQS - the quilt is the Virginia Reel and it is from Elizabeth, from Virginia!!... I just love it... plus all the little goodies. It's hanging in my studio where I can see it every day.

The ice is beginning to form on the lake, so it is a real good time to get busy on my UFO's - which is what I have been doing the last few days. We have two little muskrats that like to come and play everyday on the ice. The lake should be frozen by now, but we are having unseasonal weather at the moment. Hopefully we will have winter soon, because without the snow the lake will be down in the spring.


I spent the weekend quilting my "All Things Christmas" by Bunnyhill Designs. I just had so much fun.... I just have to add some buttons and bows and it will be done - my 2008 Christmas quilt!









I also have been wanting to make a sock monkey for the longest time..... so this is my first one - has some festive clothing..... my niece collects them and I thought it would be a nice Christmas present.... and I finished a small wallhanging done with crayons, and finished 3 wool applique ornaments - so I am on my "UFO completion" way....
Thought for the Day
I'll wear a little poppy,
As red as red can be,
To show that I remember
Those who fought for me.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Well...... it finally happened....

we have snow!! How fitting it was to receive my first ornament block today from Christine. The background on this block is teeny tiny little snow flakes - very cute. I can't wait to get them all, now!



I quilted up my four patch stack quilt - here's one of the fancy feathers that I put in the bottom borders. This was a fun project to quilt. I guess if it keeps snowing I will just keep quilting!!!

Oh, and congratulations to President Obama.......

Thought for the Day
Oh! the snow, the beautiful snow, Filling the sky and earth below, Over the housetops, over the street, Over the heads of the people you meet. Dancing, Flirting, Skimming along.
J.W. Watson