Thursday, September 29, 2011

Just in the nick of time!

Yippie! I finished the "Happy Camper" quilt just in time for my Mom's 75th birthday on Saturday! I'm not gonna fingers are sore from the hand quilting, but I love the look of the big stitches and the Perle Cotton thread :)

This quilt pattern is a free download from the Moda Bakeshop called "Boxed In"and you can find it HERE. This quilt finished out at 54" square. A nice size for a lap quilt. The fabrics are from the "Happy Camper" fabric collection by American Jane.

I love the backside too! I like the way the wonky squares look with the different color threads :)

I can just picture my Mom sitting in her comfy chair in the evenings doing her needlepoint with a cookie nearby and a cup of hot tea......all wrapped up in this happy bright quilt :)

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

A Little Christmas Charm :)

I finished up the cross stitch work on my little Nutcracker ornament last night. Now I have to sew it into a tube shape and add the top and bottom circles and stuff it. It's going to be so cute! I love love love Nutcrackers!

Here's a better picture of what the finished ornaments look like :)

I know I said I wasn't going to join any more swaps until the beginning of the year, but.....
(and I blame it all on Cherise from Sewingly Along.......)
I'm joining the Christmas Fabric Charm Swap!
No sewing....just swapping 5" fabric squares from 2 yds of fabric (1 yd each of 2 fabrics)  and in return I'll receive 112 charm squares of Christmas prints! How fun is that????
If you are interested...jump HERE and read the details and join the fun. But hurry....there is only room for 56 participants!

It's all about choices......

I have have come face to face with some really hard truths in the last few months. You see, I have struggled with my health (Hashimoto's Thyroiditis, Fibromyalgia and Insulin Resistance) for more than 15 years now and pain and sleepless nights have been my "normal". I was introduced to a Holistic Dr. by my son-in-law and this Dr. is helping me to allow my body to heal itself the way God designed our bodies to do through proper nutrition. I have been angry.....grouchy....and over-all whiny through a lot of this process. I have felt deprived and punished that I can't eat the foods that other people can. Through the multiple blood and saliva tests I have found out that I can never have coffee again, *sob*, no corn, no oats, no tapioca, no quinoa, no dairy, no rye, no barley, no sorghum, no sugar and no gluten. I have also found that most gluten free foods that are on the shelves even at Whole Foods contain some form of corn or tapioca in them. So I'm faced with the realization that I will be making my own foods. I also learned that I have autoimmune inflammatory issues and I need to eliminate any foods that cause inflammation as well. The good news is that I now sleep deeply through the night. I'm down 21 pounds and I have less pain (and it's only been about 2 1/2 months) I feel like I'm finally getting to a place of acceptance. I have the choice to be happy. I have the choice to live a healthier life. I've also been using natural soaps, shampoo, deoderant, etc. So I'll be sharing recipes and products that I find helpful along the way. I have decided that rather than drive you all crazy with my recipes and what-not (I came here for sewing and I right?) I started a new blog today called Oh My Gluten Free Goodness so that I have a seperate venue for the g/f stuff. . I have no followers yet and it's pretty lonely over there, so if you find this helpful information, stop on by and say "hello"

Today I'm sharing a muffin recipe that I made for the first time this morning :)

Gluten Free/ Dairy Free Coconut Flour Muffins

3 eggs
2 tblsp Organic Coconut Oil -melted
2 tblsp coconut milk
3 tblsp Coconut crystals or honey
1/4 tsp sea salt
1/4 tsp real vanilla
1/4 cup Organic Coconut flour
1/4 tsp corn free baking powder (I use Hain Gluten Free)

Blend together eggs, butter, coconut milk, honey, salt and vanilla. Combine coconut flour with baking powder and thoroughly mix batter until there are no lumps. Pour batter into greased muffin cups. Bake at 400 degrees for 15 minutes. Makes 6 muffins.

*Note: there is no coconut flavor in these muffins at all :)

This is a great basic recipe. Next time I'm going to add some sliced almonds to the top before I bake them. I'm also going to experiment with adding some pumpkin :)

Thursday, September 22, 2011

13 Saturdays......

With only 13 Saturdays left before Christmas, I've been busy working on gifties. Some of them I just can't show you until after Christmas, but I'm pretty sure that Sofie and Evie don't have internet access just yet :) I finished these 2 rattles for the girls this evening. They are made out of a pair of pink polka dot socks that I found at Target on clearance for $2.48! They have a jingle bell inside the head that is muffled by the stuffing so they have a pleasant little jingle. You can find the free tutorial HERE.

I noticed the 2 proud Dad's holding their little girls on Sunday after lunch and decided to snap a photo. I wasn't expecting the girls to be looking at each other. How cute is that? I can tell they are going to be such good friends! I hope they like their rattles :)

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Look what I found.....

I'm working on some cute sock rattles and I needed 2 jingle bells (that I'm sure I have somewhere) so I ventured out into the garage to look through some of my crafting supplies. I opened this tin and found all my old embroidery floss along with these three embroideries that I did when I was probably 10 years old. My favorite Aunt & Uncle in Germany have 3 children, Maika, Norma and Sonny (Jr.). I was stitching these for her as a gift and for what ever reason, I never finished the last one. A few years ago my cousin Sonny was killed in a terrible car accident at the age of 39. He was survived by 2 teenage children and for all of us the void is still so painful. He was one of those people who always made you laugh and had such a fun personality. I find myself sitting here in tears at the thought that he's really gone. Having found these, I really want to complete the 3rd one and make them into a small quilt for my aunt. Sonny died shortly after Christmas and this is always a really hard time for them. I'm hoping that this gift will warm her heart and not cause her more pain.
 Does anyone have any insight?

Also in the box was this handmade kitty that I did about 15 years ago. I sewed her, painted her, sanded her and then painted the face. I'm going to list her in my shop and see if anyone is interested :)

Monday, September 19, 2011

Friday Night Sew In #5

Friday night was another really fun "Sew In"!
Did you join in the fun? I have to admit, I missed chatting with my buddies during the night....
some of my friends were busy elsewhere, but I did get to finish this fun retro apron for my daughter in law :)
She requested a "big ol butt bow" so I changed the pattern to add that in.
I used Butterick B5474 view A for this apron. I didn't like the way the pattern has you starting the seam binding at the top corner of the apron. I should have started the bias on the side seam so that the top edge of the apron would have a nice smooth corner with no seam and the seam would be hidden on the side. Don't you hate it when your instinct tells you something and you ignore it until later and you're ticked off that you didn't listen to yourself? Oh well. I'll be making a few more of these and I'll do it my way next time.

All in all, she loved it and that's what really matters!

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

14 and counting....

With just 14 Saturdays left until Christmas Eve, I've been busy working on Christmas projects. For the most part, I can't show you what I've been working on because the recipients might see their gifts early and where's the fun in that? This little cross stitch nutcracker will be a ornament. I can't wait to get him all stitched! I love love love nutcrackers!

It's been a crazy week so far but I did manage to get another apron done...

and a pair of potholders to match the apron I made last week.

And it never ceases to amaze me how God takes care of me!
I was bummed at the thought that I wouldn't be getting any fun mail this month due to my self imposed "fabric fast". But guess what? I won a give-away over at The Sunflower Patch! Look at all the cool stuff she packed in there!
Thanks so much CeLynn!!!!

Then another sweet blogger buddy. Teresa from Teresa's Heartfelt Stitches sent me this darling card and these 2 patterns! I can't wait to try them out!
Thanks Teresa!!!!

And last but not least, my daughter sent me this sweet card just to encourage me
 and send me some Chamomile tea :)
Have a wonderful Wednesday everyone!!!

Monday, September 12, 2011


I had every intention of working on my Happy Camper quilt today, but then I got sidetracked. The hubby and I went to the Orange Circle after lunch yesterday and I found another hand stitched handkerchief for my collection. So when I picked it up off the kitchen table this afternoon to put it away, I somehow ended up digging through the drawer where I keep them and ended up ironing table linens and re-arranging my pantry in the laundry room to accommodate all my table linens. Don't ask me what those things have in common, but now all my tablecloths and napkins are neatly organized and there is stuff all over my kitchen counters and dining table!
I thought I'd show you a photo of an apron that was in the drawer with the hankies that the hubby bought me years ago at an antique shop. I love it, but I personally believe that he bought it because it's sheer.....just sayin :)

These are a few of my favorite hankies :) Enjoy!

I absolutely love the ones with initials on them. I'm always on the lookout for a "C" or "K".
 My grandmother had 12 of everything - nightgowns, dishtowels, hankies, etc with this kind of amazing stitchery. In her time, young women would do this for their trousseau. They were all done on beautiful white linen. She gave me one of her nightgowns when I was a girl and the dork that I am, I cut it short and wore it with my Levi's 501s. There should be a law against doing that kind of thing to art like this. I wish I had it back now. I do still have her dish towels. Can you believe that even the buttons on the nightgown were stitched by hand? So amazing.... 

I'm always so amazed that I can find these for a dollar or 2 at antique stores and I can't even imagine the amount of hours that went into stitching them.

Cherries.....seriously cute :)

Look at all the details and tiny tiny cross stitch!

This is the one I bought yesterday. $2.95

Love this one too :)

Can you believe that lace is done by hand? Amazing!

And I really love the way they appliqued these tiny flowers.
One day I'll figure out something cool to do with them. I do have one of my favorites framed in my bedroom, after is art!

Saturday, September 10, 2011

An Apron and a Dumpling :)

 I've been working on another apron tutorial to share with you and this is what I've come up with.
 I should be done writing it up by next week. I'm still trying to figure out a name for it.
 Any suggestions?
In the meantime, I thought I'd show you some pictures of the finished apron :)
The back has a "big ol butt bow" and who doesn't love that?

I can't believe I'm actually using fabrics from my stash. It was hard to cut into these but I know I have to do it sooner or later.......

I also made one of Keyka Lou's "Dumpling" bags. How cute is that name? She has a free download pattern and you can get it HERE. It's totally FTS (fun to sew) so hop on over there and give it a try.
You gotta love free tutorials! I know I do!!!

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Sew productive :)

Have you ever have a day where you are just sewing along happily,
getting things checked off your "to do" list.....
and suddenly you realize you just sewed your bag upside down?
No?     Just me then :)

Luckily I caught it before I sewed the entire bag together. It was an easy fix and I finished it. Yes, I know this is yet again one of those cute re-usable Keyka Lou grocery bags. For those of you who actually read my blog on a regular basis, I'm sure you'll remember when I went through my Sweetwater apron phase. These are so FTS that I'll probably be boring you with more of these before I move on to something else :)

Love Love Love this fabric!
How cute are all the groceries? I used heavy weight natural canvas for the outside of the bag.

You would be the envy of every other shopper at
Whole Foods with a bag like this one!

I also took 5 pairs of little boys jammies that had holes in the knees and turned them into shorts for the warm nights we've been having and I made a pair of snugly jammie pants for my lovely daughter in law :)

And last but not least, one more Owlie bag for the shop.
Even with the upside down was a pretty productive day :)

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

A Journal for a Friend :)

Have you ever met someone and for whatever reason, God has really just placed them on your heart? I've had this happen to me a few times where, at the time, I don't know exactly what is happening with them, I only know that they keep coming back to my thoughts. Through my blog, I've recently met a lovely woman like that who is going through an incredibly tough time right now. She is relying on the Lord to give her the strength that she needs as she cares for her ailing Mother. I felt moved to make something for her and at first I was reluctant to reach out to her, afraid that she might think I was some kind of weirdo ( which I totally am )
But after I contacted her, I was really glad I did.
I remembered that my Mom kept a journal of the last few weeks of my Dad's life as he battled with cancer. She wrote her feelings and the funny things he'd say to make her laugh as well as the day to day happenings. She re-reads it every year in May and it keeps her feeling very connected to him. 

 I did this small cross stitch and then made a cover for a blank journal out of red & white polka dot canvas. I stitched the completed cross stitch to the cover. I hope that she will find comfort in it, just like my Mom still does.

I didn't write this post to say "look what a nice person I am". Whatever gifts or talents I may possess or whatever good ideas may pop up in my head come directly from Jesus Christ. I wrote this post to encourage others to maybe look around them and see if perhaps God has placed someone in their life that could use some encouragement today.

"Do not withhold good from those who deserve it, when it is in your power to act." -Proverbs 3:27

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Happy Camper Quilt Update :)

Yesterday was such a lovely relaxing day. I was able to finish up the quilt top and the backing for my Happy Camper Quilt. Today I'll be working on the embroidered label for the backside and then I can sandwich this little beauty and start on the hand quilting. I realized that the sandwiching part is definatley not my favorite! I can't imagine that anyone actually likes that part of it. But it is definately worth the trouble when it's all finished!

I've been searching for the perfect quilt pattern for our bedroom. I have the fabric, but I just couldn't make up my mind on the design. I think I've found one that I really love:
I know that I've only done 2 baby quilts and now a throw sized quilt, and I'm definately most likely outside of my mind......but I think if I go slowly I could actually do this without hurting myself or others....
Can you see all those tiny triangles?
Yeah....I must be nuts!

My little Owlie is moving to..........


My lucky winner is:


Who said:

"I follow and love your blog. I live in Utah but am originally from California. I don't remember how I found your blog-probably blog surfing."

Congrats Emilee! Please email me with your address and I'll send this little guy off to his new home :)

Thanks everyone for playing along! It was so much fun to read all your comments and get to know where you are all from :)

Monday, September 5, 2011

Happy Labor Day!

I hope you are enjoying Labor Day! I know I am :) The hubs is home so we were able to sleep in this morning until 8:45am........
I know.....we're lazy deadbeats!!!!
But that is one of the joys of being empty nesters :)
We had a lovely breakfast and now I'm getting a little sewing time in. I made these quilted Retro Pot holders to match the Sunkissed Pears Apron I listed on etsy a few weeks back.
I used this great free pattern on
I've used this pattern before and I love it!
It's definitely FTS (fun to sew) These cuties will get listed on etsy later today or tomorrow.
I have lots of insulbrite in my stash so I'll be making more of these as part of my quest to use up my stash in September....or at least make a dent in it :)

I love that these are really oven mitts rather than pot holders because you slide your hand into them. I'm kind of a klutz so I'm not really a fan of regular pot holders. They tend to move and I end up scorching myself all the time.

Well it's time to cut the hubby's hair and then get the sashing done on my Happy Camper quilt.
Have a wonderful day everyone!!!

Saturday, September 3, 2011

I got my "baby" back!

I've been doing ALOT of sewing this past year and I've been using my machine almost every day.
She was desperately in need of a sewing machine spa getaway after all her faithful service.
I was reluctant to part with her, but I was told that she would only be gone a few days. Well it turned out that she was gone for 7 whole days!!! I seriously don't know how I survived without her, but I'm so overjoyed at how she purrs now and she just seems so happy to sew with me again :) With my baby safely home again I was able to piece together most of the quilt top for my latest "Happy Camper" quilt. I still have the sashing to do and then it's sandwich time and my favorite part....
the hand quilting!
This project came together fairly quickly and part of the reason is my newest BFF.....
my Clear 1/4" Piecing Foot with Guide!!!!

No more tiny corners of fabric getting pulled into my needle plate! When I dropped off my machine for service, I had originally asked the Husqvarna dealer to special order a single needle plate for me to stop that problem, but oddly enough, they don't make one for my model machine. They told me with this foot I'd never have that problem. I'll admit I was skeptical. I almost walked away without this foot and toyed with the idea of buying a different machine. But thankfully I plunked down my $25.00 and brought this miracle foot home. I could have sworn that I heard angels singing when I started to piece my quilt top! No more jams! Each piece of fabric effortlessly follows the next and I owe it all to this amazing little marvel! And with the built in guide, you keep a perfect 1/4 seam allowance! I've only done 2 other quilts and few small projects so far, but now armed with this fantastic little foot I'm ready to take on the quilting world!