Envelope Project

Sunday, December 18, 2011

It's the Most Wonderful Time of the Year!

Okay, the camera problem is solved.  Yes, the camera has died, but fortunately the memory card lives on and we were able to retrieve the pictures.  Yay!

What a boatload of presents!  It turns out there were quite a few Christmas gift exchanges at the restaurant that night so we felt right at home!

And here's the loot I received from Donna . . . drumroll please . . .

My, oh my, did I hit the jackpot or what??!!

There were handmade cards and a sweet embroidered snowman to add to my collection.

 There was not one, but two quilting books and a journal.

 Lots of snowmen fabric and lovely blue fabric!

 This little gem features my little snowman guys. Donna sewed snowflake buttons on at the top.  Isn't it cute?

 Potholders, coasters, bag and pinwheels . . . such talent!

 A beautiful cardinal plate with Christmas verse along with two pincushions.

 Aren't these pincushions lovely . . . a little ceramic dog and an embellished canning jar complete with blue buttons.
 Dishtowels, washcloths and lid covers all made by Donna.  I grew up with the lid covers and seeing these brought back childhood memories.  The dishtowels are so sweet and I love the crocheted washcloths.
 Red heart ornament (look closely and you'll see a deer and 2 pine trees), snowman buttons and pins.

And here Donna is opening up the little gifts in the Christmas tree I made for her.  This present was so much FUN to make!  I may have to make one for moi some day.

This is what it looked like finished.  There's a dowel rod at the top with red ribbon ties so it can be hung up.  The branches were stitched with a decorative stitch and then I added gold buttons of various sizes and shapes to represent ornaments.  The idea for this gift brewed in my head for awhile before I was able to sit down and make the vision a reality.  I think it turned out nicely.

Thank you, Cheryll for putting this gift exchange together.  What a treat it's been that my swap partner not only lives in the same state, but close enough that we're able to get together and share a meal and some laughs.  That's been the best gift!

Here's hoping everyone is having a wonderful holiday season.  Merry Christmas!!

Always Something . . .

Last Thursday night Donna and I met for dinner and had our Santa Sack Swap!  We had a FANTASTIC time eating and laughing and then opening up a gazillion presents.  On Friday I tried to download all of the wonderful pictures we took and yes, Houston, we have a problem . . . something about the hub port being in use too long . . . what???!!!  So, I've unplugged it and let it rest for several days . . . does it work yet . . . come on!  There's a ton of really great pictures in that camera and they want to come out; I know they do!!  But, alas and alack, for now I can only enjoy on the preview screen on the camera.  So, maybe later on today I will get out the bigger, heavy duty camera and take pictures of all my awesome goodies from Donna.   Sorry for the delay . . .

Thanks, Cheryll for hosting this wonderful swap!!

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Vacation Sewing

I was off on vacation for awhile there and now I'm back to work.  Ugh!  But, during my work hiatus I managed to do some creative stuff.  There was quite a bit of sewing while I made more of my scrap blocks. 

Does anyone else feel like they sit at the seewing machine for hours making these things and at the end of the day the scrap pile hasn't gone down at all??!!  I guess part of that is because I started other projects which resulted in . . . you guessed it . . . more scraps!!!  Yikes!  If only these little scraps could mate at night and then I could get up in the morning and just press them and quilt them!!  Ah, heavy sigh, I guess I'll just keep plugging along.

Next up was some Christmas fabric that I quilted and turned into these little lovelies.

 There were potholders to match, but it looks like I failed to take pictures of them!

I'm in love with the quilted feel of these aprons.  It's like being wrapped in some warm, comforting goodness.

Next up was the pile of scrap charm pack squares.  What to do . . . what to do . . . ???  I'd never done a D4P so I decided to tackle that and see where it left me.

Right now these squares are just thrown up on the design wall and I'm thinking I'll add some soft yellow sashing between the sections of this quilt to make it grow!!

And to add some variety to the creating craftiness, I splurged and purchased some new wonderful pens for my journaling and envelope projects.

I'm loving these puppies!!

There was some more creating, but it's for a gift and so I'll wait until the big reveal to show you that project.

And last, but not least . . . Love it!!!  The bag is FULL!!  Donna and I will be meeting next week to have dinner and open up our gifts.  It's going to be so much FUN!!!  Stay tuned for the upcoming pictures of all our goodies . . .

Donna also awarded me the Liebster award a couple weeks ago.  I've been remiss in acknowledging this.  So, please go visit Donna at her cute blog, Donna's Lavender Nest and leave her a comment or two.  I've been hardpressed to find time to visit many blogs these days, so I'm going to hand this award out to those of you who read my blog and also have a small following.  Keep up the GREAT work.  As long as you continue to love it and are inspired, there's no reason to stop. 

Now, it's time to get back to the crafting . . . hope you're all ENJOYING your creative day!!

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

This and That . . .

The holiday season is off to a grand start as B-guy and I took a trip to Kansas to see my family for Thanksgiving.  The weather, food, company was perfect.  Half of my siblings and their families weren't there and we still had 38 people who were all family members.  It was so much FUN!!

The day after Thanksgiving was my brother's birthday and in his honor we ran approximately 4 miles.  Unfortunately he couldn't make the run.  Oh, well . . . next time.

This was taken after we finished our 4 miles.  It was really cold that morning and the Kansas wind just about blew us away, but we prevailed and celebrated with a big Italian lunch!!  Birthday Bro was able to make the lunch . . . hmm . . .

I'm meeting Donna for lunch today.  We're exchanging our Santa Sack gifts.  I still have one more to give, but I haven't finished it yet, so I'm sure we'll do lunch again next week.  Hee hee!!  I'm on vacation this week so hopefully I'll get my butt in gear and finish it.

The fabric rosettes look nice on this packaging.  I know, I need to work on my Christmas decorating skills.  Maybe next year . . .

 I've been working on reducing my scrap pile.  These are made just from the scraps that have not been cut up or put up and are rather small pieces. 

Even after making these blocks, I'm looking at the scrap basket and I swear it hasn't gone down at all!!  What's up with that??!!  Looks like I'll be making more blocks when I get back from lunch!!

And last, but not least, here is the latest book I read on the trip back from Kansas.

Lots of inspiration in these pages.  I'm not big on following other people's how-to instructions.  I'm more of a let me see the pretty pictures and then I'll let it brew in my head for awhile and then try to rework it into something more like me.  I do love me some inspiration, though.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Good Things Come in Small Packages!

My purchases from Creative Thursday arrived today.  Yay!  I say any day is a good day when fabric arrives in the mail.  This is Marisa's first fabric line and I am loving it.  Good quality fabric with adorable prints.  I'm looking forward to making something super cute out of these prints.

I also ordered some postcards.  I'm looking forward to sending some Creative Thursday love out into the universe!

 Marisa is the artist who created the Memory game I purchased earlier this year.  These little prints just make me happy.  I had to order the postcards as I'm getting ready to send the Memory Game off to a special little someone!  bye bye little guys!

I also received a few more items last Friday, but I can't show them until we have the big reveal from the Santa Sack Swap!!  Stay tuned . . . they're adorable!

And to continue the awesome week I'm having so far, tomorrow is lunch with Donna and I'm pretty sure that there'll be plenty of laughing involved!  I hope your week is also off to a GREAT start!


Sunday, November 20, 2011

The Idea Comes to Fruition

This idea has been brewing in my head for awhile now and today I found time to execute a rough draft.  I'm pleased with the results.

In an effort to try and use up a lot of my stash, I've been trying to come up with ideas that would use large chunks of fabric with not a lot of difficulty involved.  Just sew and go.  I have been making aprons recently and I thought "what about a quilted apron"?  So, today I sat down and tried it out.  I grabbed the first two pieces of fabric scraps that were already on the table and this is what I came up with.

This was already loaded on the longarm, so I resorted to the Bernina  . . .

and did some free motion quilting.

And this is how it turned out.  For a first try, I'm loving it.

Friday, November 18, 2011

Airing of the Quilts

I forgot to mention that last weekend Donna (from Donna's Lavender Nest), her husband, B-guy and I all took a trip to Smithville, TX to see the airing of the quilts.  We walked, we talked, we laughed, we ate.  It was a very FUN trip!  Thanks, Donna!!

This was small town USA and it was adorable!  It was amazing to see the real estate for sale on the main streets of downtown and how cheap they are in comparison to Houston's prices.  If there was a way to make a living there, I'd be tempted . . . We found out the only quilt store in town closed its doors seven years ago.  Hmm . . . I wonder if they're ready for another one . . .

Enjoy your weekend everyone!!

A Good Day!

Who knew waking up on Friday would be the beginning of a wonderful day?  Today was the quilt donation drop off at Texas Children's Hospital in Houston.  B-guy and I met up with my nephew, Dan, who works at TCH.  On our entry into the hospital we ran into my niece (Dan's wife - who also works at the hospital).  We took a quick tour as Dan was on a time crunch and then it was off to drop the quilts off at Volunteer Services.  After dropping off the quilts, we ran into one of my bootcamp buddies in the stairwell and had some more laughs at how "normal" we looked when we aren't all dolled up in our workout clothes with sweat dripping down our faces.

 13 quilts

 15 pillowcases

 Ready to deliver!

 Aren't these stuffed animals cute?  Yes, they were given to the hospital also.

And here we are delivering to Henry, the giraffe!!

I don't ever want to wish anyone a stay at the hospital, but if you need to be there, it is the most warm, loving and inviting place.  It's totally geared toward the children feeling at ease and as normal as possible.  I'm pretty sure my quilts have found a loving home! It was a very good day indeed!!

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Yogi Master

So, I've been making quilts for a few years now and I've given most of them away.  Last week B-guy and I decided to finally try one out and we gave this one a spin. 

Turns out the quilt is really warm and nice and soft - perfect for cuddling on the couch.  So, I hope the other recipients of my quilts are as pleased with theirs as I am with mine.

It's almost time for the Thanksgiving holiday and my annual trek to Kansas to see the family.  Yay!  I decided I better get my butt in gear and finish the latest yoga bag for my SIL.  Cross your fingers that this one is (as Goldilocks would say) "just right"!!  And if it's not, well, you know, I'm not running out of fabric anytime soon and I'm getting pretty good at whipping these puppies out!!

 Salad plates make perfect circle templates for bag ends.

All right, here's hoping this one's a winner! 

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

More Scrappiness

Last week I found this website and I cannot believe all of the fabulous tutorials she has posted.  For some reason I was looking at my basket of scraps (which is totally out of control right now) and I remembered seeing fabric flowers somewhere so I went in search of a tutorial.  That's when I happened upon the Tip Junkie site.  So, I promptly sat down in front of the TV and made me a few.  I think my original idea was to make a wreath out of them, but we'll see where they end up.  Any ideas???

Last week I also finished quilting a scrap quilt.  Here are some pictures of it in progress.

And last, but certainly not least, Donna and I had our Christmas exchange lunch and here is what I gave her.  Unfortunately I haven't taken any pictures of her perfectly wrapped and adorable gifts yet.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Seeing Dots

This has been a busy week . . . I'm on vacation . . . Yay!  On Sunday I did my 3rd triathlon and I'm pleased to say that I finished 9 out of 18 in my age group.  If I was just one year older I would have taken the 3rd place medal . . . drat!!  Why couldn't I be OLDER??!!  What??  That's insanity!!  Next year, I'm looking to podium!!  Hee hee!!

On Monday I had high hopes of making it to bootcamp at 5:15 a.m., but that didn't happen.  Neither did the 6:30 p.m. Monday bootcamp.  But, I was out there bright and early Tuesday morning for an hour of brutality, er, I mean high intensity exercise.  I was back at it again this morning and I have one more session tomorrow morning.   My body is totally beat up, but I need it so I'm determined to get out there and do the best that I can.  I'm trying to talk myself into a little run when I get through with this post.  I'm thinking maybe I should write a really, really long post and then it'll be too late to run!! 

But, unfortunately I have nothing to say, so I'll just share a couple pictures of the projects I've been working on during my week long hiatus from work.

This week my niece turned 13.  Coincidentally, "Happy Birthday" is 13 letters long and I sent her 13 presents for her birthday.  I got to use some of my handmade tape to wrap the packages.

Backside of the D9P

Okay, the color is totally wong in this picture; I'm not sure what happened with the camera (operator!!).  The fabrics are all shades of purple (mostly dots) and the circles were made with the longarm.  The fabric is light purple dots in that area.   This quilt is being added to my stash of giveaway quilts for the kids at the hospital.

This is the backside of the quilt.  It's a lavender color.   I really should go take some better pictures . . . but you know, there's that pressing running issue!!