Thursday, 20 December 2007

Ready or Not . . .

Christmas is almost here and there are still lots of last minute things to do! Like updating my blog! It's been a few days since I've been at the computer - using the sewing machine more than the computer lately - nice change!

I think we're just about ready . . . have to be, the kids came home from Winnipeg yesterday so anything that still needs done, I now have help to do!

I have actually been on holidays for the past week . . . finishing off a few Christmas gifts (MIL quilt for one) and starting a few new projects that used the VERY creative side of my brain. I love those projects - the day just slips by at lightning speed and I have such a feeling of satisfaction (usually!).

I did find a chance to take a couple of photos though. The one above is a Jack Frost original. I find these so fascinating! They must be created by wind movement and light or something . . . I don't remember studing anything about this in school. Absolutely wonderful stuff - I don't think the picture does the masterpiece justice though. See if you can find some of his work around your place and study the intricate ripples and lines - makes you wonder how it's done, doesn't it?

This weird donut shaped thing in my back yard is really our fire pit - it looks so funny the way the snow has settled inside and around the outside edges. Usually it's buried completely or the wind blows the snow off the top edges, but this time it just looks like a frozen donut!

This little star was a gift that I received at the quilt club Christmas party that is a very welcome addition to my Christmas decorating - I love all the little stitches on all the tiny features. Thank you, Gail.

And, on a final note, this little guy is going to help me wish you a . . .



'til next time,

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Thursday, 13 December 2007

Smiles for the Season . . .

Still cold here, had a little bit more snow that is currently blowing around in a very cold wind. A nice gentle snow falling is perfect, but wind and snow do not mix very well.

If only it was as calm as this winter scene, all would be good with the world.

And just so I can forget the snow and wind, here is a little smile for everyone . . . including me.

Are these not the cutest little snowmen you ever saw!

Anne Sutton at Bunny Hill (see my sidebar) had these shown on her blog last week - so I added white Christmas balls to my shopping list for Saturday's shopping excursion. Do you know how hard it was to find white Christmas balls? Finally found these tiny, little, kinda white balls that were packaged with matching silver balls. The Christmas balls shown on Anne's blog were much bigger than mine, so I guess that shows that any size will work and they still make me smile.

Once all the painting was completed and the balls were arranged in a beautiful crystal candy dish, it was time to package them up and give them away. These little guys were a gift at the quilt group Christmas Party last Monday. They sure didn't stay home with me for very long . . .

But! . . . I have since gone shopping again and bought the last three packages of Christmas balls! I will now be looking for something larger than a candy dish to display my 18 snowmen and 18 silver balls in. Can't wait to start vacation Friday at 4:30 - I've got lots of projects lined up . . . including painting my little snowguys and doing lots of smiling.

'til next time,


Tuesday, 11 December 2007

Sunny Old Santa . . .

Oh, what a lovely day it was on Sunday . . . sitting in the sunniest place in the house wrapping Christmas presents for the quilt group's Christmas Party.

Little Santa bags, Santa ornaments, fabric (of course!) and Heather Bailey's pincushion pattern . . . all wrapped up and ready for distribution on Monday night.

The fabric was generously donated from a local fabric store which made the Christmas committee's job so much easier. All of the prints were sewing related so the fat quarters can be used for pincushions, little sewing rolls, thread catchers or a multitude of other sewing related projects.

What better little gift for a quilter?!?!?!

The little snowman ornaments were donated by Mabel, (one of the Christmas committee personnel) and they topped off the little packages quite nicely. Everyone can now hang these on their tree or use them to add to the next gift they wrap.

And speaking of gifts . . . Wow! The gift exchange this year was wonderful. Everyone outdid themselves in choosing the best presents for quilters . . . lots of fabrics, notions and wonderful little tools that will be made use of in the coming year.

I purposely didn't take any pictures of the pot luck supper . . . that was another WOW! Turkey and dressing, perogies, cabbage rolls, lasagna, carrots, salads and on and on. Followed by the desserts (of course!) and flavoured coffee - thank goodness this just happens once a year.

It is now officially starting to feel a bit more like Christmas . . .

'til next time,


Thursday, 6 December 2007

Ah . . . December ...

EEK!!!! I'm not anywhere near being ready for anything to do with December . . . and we're already a week into it!

And, where is the 2008 Kim Diehl calendar? I've loved this calendar all year long and now I will have nothing to replace it with in 3 1/2 weeks time . . . wild animals and scenery stuff just doesn't compare!

Well the weather around here certainly feels like December . . . cold, Cold, COLD!! My kids used to look at me when they were little and ask why they had to be born in Manitoba . . . wonder if I asked my parents the same thing? Why not Arizona, Florida or somewhere nice and warm?

All we can do is stare at our wonderful BBQ and dream of warmer days to come. Imagine the big, beautiful, juicy steak . . . oh, the memories . . .

I was talking to my photography teacher the other day and he commented on how much he liked winter and getting out and taking pictures. He said that capturing the shadows in photos was the neatest thing in winter . . . I guess I now know what he was talking about. This photo is actually the garage roof . . . fresh fallen snow and lots of shadows spread out across the surface. I cheated though, I didn't get my parka and boots on to do this . . . this was taken from a kitchen window through the glass! What a cheat I am :)

Winter might be alright . . . as long as all I have to do is sit indoors and look at it . . . there are some beautiful views to be seen. I missed the horror frost the other day . . . had a Council meeting and didn't have my camera with me . . . it was too dark by the time I got home.

Just imagine all the warm, toasty, creative quilting I could do if only I could stay indoors and view the world from there. Would that really be so bad . . .

'til next time . . .


Wednesday, 5 December 2007

Crazy for Snowmen!

Another snowman on the worktable . . . when will they quit showing up?

This one isn't mine . . . this is the quilt that is featured on the front of Fons and Porter's last issue (in stores now!) and I've had my eye on it ever since the issue previous to this one came out. They always show projects of what is upcoming in the next issue and I thought this little guy with his ear muffs and big scarf was something that needed added to my already weirdly obsessed collection. The pattern is by Sharon Reynolds (Tenderberry Stitches) using fabric she designed for Northcott Fabrics.

Plus I had fabric left over from my mother-in-law's quilt and I thought this was a great way to use up those pieces . . . plus . . . Mysty and Shadow seem to still be following this fabric everywhere it goes - maybe this will be the girl's Christmas present - a little snowman quilt for each of them.
I'm scheduled to take the last two weeks of December off, so I'm looking forward to having the house to myself for the first week of vacation, so I'll be able to finish some projects or maybe, just maybe, start some new ones. I'm thinking that 2008 is going to be a very busy year and I'm going to start getting excited about it very, very soon . . .
'til next time,

Sunday, 2 December 2007

Christmas . . . some things just can't wait!

Ok . . . all you ladies in Brandon, who are in the quilt group . . . close your eyes!

Everyone else - look at the Christmas project that will be handed out on December 10th at our Christmas Party! This isn't the whole surprise, but it is part of the surprise. I know I should wait until after the 10th, but this was about the only sewing project I completed this weekend.

I love my little sample - and I don't usually even use pincushions! I use one of those magnetic ones that lets you just take a general aim in that direction and it catches the pin for you - lazy or what? Look at the little vintage buttons I found - these date back to the 50's and 60's and I think they finish off this little project quite nicely.

This is Heather Bailey's pincushion pattern that has been showing up everywhere you look. It was published in "Quilts and More" magazine back in the Summer and she now has a download on her blog. I have taken the pattern and shifted all the photos and directions around so that it now is in the form of a notecard and the pattern pieces will be on the backside, so that you can open the card out and trace your patterns (all in an effort to save paper and bulk). Sure hope that doesn't infringe on anything - I didn't change any wording and I'm not selling it, so it should be OK! Visit her blog (see my sidebar) and get your own download and make a couple of these for gifts - really quite simple - of course I changed a few things for my pincushion. See what you can come up with . . .

And then another thing that just can't seem to wait for Christmas . . . I thought these were called Christmas Cactus?

The pink one has been blooming since Halloween and the peachy colored one for the past couple of weeks. What a bright spot of color these have been creating in my living room and kitchen . . . that one little splash of brilliance . . . these are such amazing blooms! You really need to almost lay on the floor and look up at the bloom to get the best view of the structure of the flower - who created these anyway? Beautifully done!

I'm sure they will all be shrivelled up by Christmas, so I thought I better share the beautiful colors and so very unique blooms right now.

And . . . the sewing continues - I started some more snowmen over the weekend and have everything ready to start machine quilting my MIL quilt - countdown is on . . . 22 days to completion . . .

'til next time,