Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Let’s Start Making a Giveaway Pansy Penny Rug Candle Mat!

Now ladies.


I’m not doing a giveaway yet!

I’m “PREPARING” for the giveaway.

I must have confused quite a few of you with my previous post because many of you entered into a giveaway that didn’t exist!

:) This made me smile and it also made me realize, AGAIN, that I need to be really careful with how I type my words.

Yes, I’m making a Pansy Candle mat for a giveaway. But I have to make it first! Once it’s made, THEN I will have a giveaway drawing.

So those of you who entered in the drawing that doesn’t exist, just think of it as “practice warm-up” to get you ready for the real thing.

Those first 5 of you, Paulette, Rocking Chair Stitches, Darlene, Linda and Diane H, all guessed correctly that I was going to use the purple, yellow and green wools to make pansies!

Congrats ladies, you five will get one extra entry for the giveaway once I finish the candle mat and actually have the giveaway.

I’ll give another Trivia Question at the end of this post.

Remember, I’m not doing the giveaway until I have the candle mat finished!

Ok, here’s an example of what I’m going to make for my one year blogaversary giveaway:

Pictures 362

This is one from last year. I made a ridiculous number of these last year for orders. I also made it with a white background:

Picture 147

And honestly, I couldn’t tell you which background color I liked the best. They both are just exceptionally nice in their own way.

For the giveaway, I will be making the pansies with the black background, simply because I have the new black wool all washed, felted and ready to use whereas the white wool is still on the bolt, in a box, unfelted.

So let’s start making this!

100_3647 So, I did say that I made quite a few of these candle mats last year, but unfortunately, I didn’t bother to create an actual pattern for the design. Therefore, this drawing is all I have to work with to make another one. I vaguely remember how I did it, but I’ll have to measure and start from scratch with that center circle and the stems that curve off of it.


I grabbed up this little glass dish to use for the center circle. It’s about 4” in diameter, so I traced around it with a chalk pencil.


Center circle is drawn in the middle. Now I’ll measure and draw in those pinwheel type stems.

100_3651 I measured and marked, with my chalk pencil, where I need the lines to be drawn …100_3653 and using my handy dandy candy dish again, I used the outside curve shape of it to draw in the arches.

100_3654 There ya go! Chalk lines are all drawn in so now I start stictching…

100_3657 Using green #5 DMC, I stem stitched along all the lines.

Most of the time when I mark with chalk pencil, I only mark a small area at a time because if done in a large area, like this, the chalk lines tend to rub off and disappear. In this case though, because there’s so much exact measuring involved with the lines, I chalk marked the entire thing and I just made sure to keep the chalk pencil handy to remark some of the rubbed off unstitched areas.

After stitching this much on stretchy wool, I’ll steam press the backside of this with a pressing cloth to get it to lay super nice and flat again. I love how wool goes so nicely right back into shape with a good steam press.

So, to remind y’all again, this isn’t a giveaway yet. Hopefully next week, after Easter, I’ll be able to finish the candle mat. At that time, I will do the official giveaway.

Until then, let’s do another Trivia question contest, ok?

The pansy question was way too easy ..and this one should be easy too ... I will be making them more difficult as the week goes on ....

What are the names of my two daughters?

The first person to get this right will earn ONE EXTRA ENTRY in the One Year Blogaversary Pansy Candle Mat Giveaway, which will be held AFTER I finish making the Pansy Candle Mat!

Happy Day Everyone!

Monday, March 29, 2010

Let’s Prepare For a GIVEAWAY!

Last year, on March 17th, I blogged for the very first time.

In honor of my one year blogaversary, I will celebrate with an extra special wool candle mat giveaway.

However, I’ve been so busy, I haven’t had the time to MAKE the giveaway candle mat yet, so I think I’ll show you the process of making it and then once it’s finished, I’ll give it away!

How’s that sound? Good. I knew you’d like that idea.

So let’s get started first with a little trivia question contest….


Here is a stack of some freshly hand-dyed wools. Green, purple and golden yellow.

I will use these three colors in the candle mat that I will be making for the giveaway.

This will be the 6th year that I’ve used the golden yellow and purple colors to make a certain something. I’m fairly well known for making this and it’s always around this time of year that I start. Anyone who looks around my blog should easily be able figure out what it is that I will be making.

TRIVIA QUESTION: What specifically will I be making with these three colors??

The first 5 people who answer this correctly will get one extra entry in the Giveaway!

You must comment in this post to win the extra entry. I can’t accept emailed answers. If you don’t have a blog, you can still comment as “anonymous” just be sure to mention your name.

I hope to have the giveaway the week after Easter sometime, so be sure to keep watch for the official Giveaway announcement.

I’ll be asking more trivia questions throughout the making of this candle mat so you all will have more chances to collect extra entries.

Ok, Car Shopping is halted until after Easter. I’m having all the relatives/family over at our house on Sunday so I MUST get Spring cleaning done to get ready.

Hubby did come with me for a little car shopping on Saturday, but we went over the instructions first so that we would not be snagged up in the salesmen’s clutches.

I’m glad this time that he did go with me because hubby knew the salesman at the Ford dealer that we stopped at.

This salesman is a college football buddy. Perfect! College football buddies have a very special bond. I’m pretty sure we will get a terrific deal on the Fusion if I decide that is the car that I want. They even have the car that matches up with my needs, plus a few extra things like a remote start and some sensors on the back bumper that will BEEP BEEP to let me know that I will be backing into something if I don’t stop in a millisecond.

I know how I am … I’ll be backing up the vehicle, hear the beep beeping and wonder, “what the heck is that beeping sound?” and still back into whatever it is that is in my way.

Mind you, I’ve never backed into anything … except my son-in-law’s car or my husbands brand spanking new Harley motorcycle .

OK …. ONLY TWO TIMES in 37 years of driving have I ever backed into anything and I didn’t even cause much damage but do you think “some” people will ever let me forget it? :)

Hmm .. thinking about this, all of my mishaps in my car have been on my own driveway.

I do admit that running down a brand new Harley was pretty horrific. The bike was sitting pretty on the drive, hubby was standing on the porch watching me slowly back out of the garage and right into his bike, knocking it over onto the cement drive. The results were only one small scratch on the motorcycle but one large scar is embedded in my husband’s brain because he sees it happen in slow motion anytime he thinks about it. Hahaha … actually hubby was screaming “STOP” just like the beep beeping of the sensors on the Fusion to warn me, but did I stop? Nope.

I think that perhaps the bumper sensors might be an option that is wasted money.

Gosh, I neeeeed to get away from this computer. I was only going to type about the giveaway and my fingers just kept going on and on and on.

Happy Day everyone!

Friday, March 26, 2010

The Funs of Car Shopping (Part 2)

Are you kidding me?    ……


This is what I woke up to this morning. 

Snow?  Laying on the ground?   That Mother Nature is sure sneaky to make it snow during the night while everyone was sleeping. 

Thank you for the terrific response for the presale pattern orders of this:


“Spring Hatchings” just came back from the printers last night so I should be able to have the patterns ready for mailing out tomorrow morning . If you haven’t already ordered the pattern and wish to get it at the special preorder price, just click that Paypal button over there by the picture and get it done!

Those who wish to pay by check, please just email me.  

Ok, more car shopping was done on Wednesday.  I went to the local Nissan dealer to test drive the Altima and I went to the Chevy dealer to test drive the Malibu.

It’s becoming frustrating because I hoped that by now, I would have found “that” car .. you know… the one that had the “WOW!” factor.   After each test drive, I’ve come to love my old 2000 Taurus even more.  

I followed my rules that I listed in my last post.  I didn’t take hubby and I didn’t go into the showroom to get numbers. 

Without hubby, I can quickly get in a car, drive it and then leave  Hmm…

I do remember a time, long ago, that I couldn’t even get a salesman to talk to me, let alone let me test drive a car without my husband with me so things have come a long way in 20 years.

I still get that feeling that these salesmen don’t take me seriously as a buyer.

I remember standing out in the cold, in the dealer lot, just waiting for a salesman to appear, to talk to him about a car that I liked.  20 years ago, Rach was only a year old and Jen was 7.  Hubby stayed home with the kids so that I could quickly check out the car that I wanted to buy.  No one ever came out.  I could see all the salesmen standing inside, watching me, but they didn’t want to waste time with a female.   

I remember one local dealership , 10 years ago, that did talk to me and show me some cars, but when I asked to test drive a specific car, he told me he would have it  out and ready for me to drive later in the day when I could bring my hubby back.  We actually did go back later in the day but the salesman didn’t have the car sitting out, ready for us to drive.  It was still buried in the back row behind 3 other rows of cars.  We left and I’ll never go back there.

So Pete, from the Nissan dealer took me for a test drive, but this test drive has reminded me to add another rule.

RULE #7 

While test driving a car, don’t chatter with the salesman about your kids in college or what you had for dinner last night. FOCUS on the car and how it drives.

Honestly, I drove that car and I really don’t know if I liked it or not because I was so busy listening to the salesman talking about his college experience and his chicken dinner from the previous night.   I know that baking chicken with his mom’s recipe for a special glaze makes the chicken super moist and tender, but I don’t know how the Altima handles bumps in the road or how much road noise can be heard.

Jen had yelled at me a few days before, telling me, “these salesmen are NOT YOUR FRIEND”!  They are PRETENDING to be your friend so that you will like them and buy a car from them.

Well, sorry Jen, Pete IS my friend now.  Pete and I bonded and even though he never got my name OR phone number, I know I can go back there to chat with him anytime I want.

I am a bit upset that I wasted time chatting with him instead of learning about the Altima.  

So my conclusion about the Altima?  I dunno but I’m going to make some really good chicken this weekend.

The test drive with Dan, at the local Chevy dealer went much better.  However, they only had two Malibus on their lot.  Not much choice there.  Dan reminded me of a little yippy Chihuahua

Nothing against Chihuahuas, they’re cute little dogs, but they’re little and spry and very active.  That was Dan.  I had trouble keeping up with Dan on the lot.  He walked so quickly that he was always 3 steps ahead of me.  Back and forth across the lot we went, quickly, with him chattering the entire time.  I swear we drove forever and ever for the test drive.  I bet we did at least 10 miles.   I liked the Malibu, but I like the Fusion and the Sonata better, I think. 

Tomorrow will be a busier day.  I’ll try the Mazda, the Honda, the Volkswagon and the Toyota.  They’re all located along the same stretch of highway but it’s a distance away so I’ll have to allow lots of time to get them all in on one day.

Happy Day Everyone!  

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Ohhhh The Funs of New Car Shopping (Part 1)

I’ve already mentioned last week that I’m going to start looking for a new car for myself.  I have a 2000 Taurus right now and I love it but it has a little over 125,000 miles and the rust cancer is taking over.  It’s still a darn good running car though. 

This experience of car shopping so far has been pretty amusing so I thought what better way to remember this than to blog about it so that 10 years from now when I’m out looking for another new car, I can come right back here and remind myself to never buy another new car, ever again!

My very first car shopping stop was the local Ford dealer.  I test drove the Fusion and I’m feeling pretty comfortable with the car but I wasn’t happy with the color or the seat fabric.  I don’t want movie theater tweed on my seats.  Give me some nice solid color tones without dots or stripes and I’ll be happy.  Better yet, just give me some leather.

Anyway, the Fusion is a definite possibility if I can find the right color with leather seats and a moonroof.

I’ve been hearing and reading really good things about the 2011 Hyundai Sonata.

2011_hyundai_sonata_actf34_ct_310102_815There’s a big Hyundai dealer about 20 minutes away so I asked hubby last night if he wanted to come with me to take a test drive.

Keep in mind the following “RULES” are my own personal rules for the process of buying a car so they may or may not apply to your own situation.

RULE #1 


That was MISTAKE #1 .

I should have known better.  Hubby is NOT a nice person when it comes to talking to car sales people.  I should have gone by myself.

I really did think that we would be able to test drive this vehicle without sitting down with the salesman to go over the numbers afterwards. 

I was able to do that when I test drove the Fusion.  I told George the salesman, that I was just looking and didn’t want to do numbers right now and he accepted it and freed me after the drive.

That’s what I fully expected to do with the Sonata test drive.

So within minutes of arrival to the Hyundai dealer, out the door to greet us was Ed.  Ed seemed like a nice jolly guy and he looked really happy to see us.  We were, after all, a rare breed.  We were actual live bodies that showed an interest in buying a car, so I’m sure he was just hopping with excitement over the prospect of chaining us to his salesman cubicle chairs once he got us into his showroom.

I know the tricks though .. when simply test driving a car, there’s no need to enter into the showroom.  Ya can’t test drive a car INSIDE.

He invited us in to go over the features of the car on display inside before we test drove one.


Don’t let Ed lure you into the showroom.

So here comes MISTAKE #2.


Ok ok, I KNOW we shouldn’t have gone in, but we did. 

Once you’re in the showroom, forget it.  Ed introduced us to the car and the features and did his very best to convince us that THIS CAR was the best car ever made, EVER!

This takes a lot of time.  A good half hour was wasted by doing this when you could have been out driving the car and on your way home.

He finally finished showing us the ultimate best car in the whole world and then allows us the opportunity to drive one, outside.


He naturally wants to see if we have drivers licenses so he asks to see them.

RULE #3 



Not only did we GIVE him our drivers licenses, we let him walk away with them, into another room, without us. 

I don’t know what he was doing with our licenses for 5 minutes but he finally came back and I noticed, with horror, that he had made copies of them and was holding a sheet of paper in his hand which had our faces on them, blown up to … ohhhh … about triple the license size. 

At that point, looking back on this now, I realize, I should have just snatched that paper right from Ed’s hands and RUN out of there as fast as possible.  I know hubby would have happily followed, because we’ve been married for so long, we pretty much think alike and he would have known what I was doing.

I didn’t do that though.   We followed him, like little puppy dogs, out to the car of my choice, to test drive.

Oh, I really like this car!  Leather seats, moon roof, all kinds of buttons and lights and each person gets TWO cupholders each!  oh  wait … HEATED leather seats!!

Test drive went well.  For only a 4 cylinder car, it had pretty good power.  It wasn’t as road noise quiet as the Fusion and I don’t think it handled the bumps as well, but it was comfortable, roomy and it felt like a luxury car without that high luxury price.  I have some concerns about the quality of the interior though and how well the car would hold up over a 10 year period.  In other words, I think it might be a cheaply made car that’s made to look good but in five years, won’t look good.

So back to the dealer lot we drove.  At this point, we should have removed ourselves from that lot by shaking Ed’s hand, thanking him for his time and scurrying quickly back to our own car to leave.



See, I’m just test driving vehicles in a process of elimination kinda thing.  I don’t know what car I want and the only way to know which ones I DON’T want is to drive them all.    I told Ed this.  I told him that I still need to try Nissans and Hondas.  I don’t want numbers.  I don’t need numbers.  It matters nothing to me at this point how much this car costs. 


Ok, OK,  how stupid to get lured back in .. and pulled into his Ed salesman cubicle.

He tricked me though.  I told him that I’d prefer the car in red, which they didn’t have … Ed says “but c’mon inside and I can see if we can find you a red Sonata”

Into the showroom … and to the dreaded Ed’s salesman cubicle.

He might as well have just said, “just sit yourselves down  and let me make you more comfortable by snapping some chains around your ankles to keep you here.”

At this point, while feeling chained into our Ed chairs, things began to get ugly. 


Ed wanted to know what kind of monthly payments we could afford. 

I told him that I didn’t know because I honestly haven’t thought about how I was going to pay for a car yet.

A quick glance over to hubby ….  oh dear. 

You know how pressure cookers work, don’t cha? 

Oh dear.  The steam was beginning to build inside the Jimmy pressure cooker.

Ed REALLY wanted me to guess how much of a monthly payment I wanted to make so just to shut him up so that he would find me a red car, I gave him a figure.

Ed shut up by leaving us.

Oh dear.   Another glance over at hubby and I realized that ED might as well be the devil in hell because hubby does NOT like to be left alone in a salesman cubicle, to wait.

Ed comes back after 5 minutes or so.  Hubby is not happy, but still quiet so I thought that we could just get the figures and then politely get up and leave.

Ed mistakenly thinks that we will be willing to pay full sticker price for this car.  

He might have us chained to his chairs, but in no way am I stupid enough to be willing to pay full sticker price. 

Oh dear.  Hubby is about ready to pressure cooker explode.

I knew I had to get him out there, quick.

Hubby grumbles to Ed something about something .. I don’t know what  … because I was more concerned about what a hubby explosion might look like. 

Ed says he’s going to rework some numbers and he’ll be right back.

Ed left us alone AGAIN.

Ed still hadn’t told me if he could find me a red Sonata. 

Ed comes back again, and hubby is getting up out of his chair to leave.  He’s had enough of these games and he’s leaving even if he has to take his chained Ed chair with him.

Ed tells me that he’s come down $3.00 in my monthly payment. 


Hubby is pushing the chair away and I quickly get up from my chair to leave …

Ed picks up his phone and tells us that he wants us to meet his $ales manager which gets us to ….

RULE # 5

$ales Managers appearing and entering into the negotiating will only make it TWO AGAINST YOU!  Don’t let it happen!

We did not make mistake #5.

$ales manager came rushing over but we were almost out the door by then.  Thankfully hubby didn’t pressure cooker explode but he did let them know that he would not put up with these stupid games and we would be back if we decided to purchase a Sonata.


IF you ignore RULE # 1 and take Hubby to test drive a car, and then you choose to ignore rules 2-4, be sure to send hubby back to the car to wait while you go into the showroom to get the figures.

Hubby should never be allowed to enter into the negotiation process.  EVER. 

Honda Accord and Nissan Altima will be test driven today.

To be continued ….

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Spring Hatchings! New Pattern!

Yes, I’ve been unusually quiet, haven’t I!

I decided that the best way to get more time is to stay away from the computer as much as possible.

It’s so easy to sit down and start reading blogs only to find that an hour or more has gone by without realizing it! There’s just so much to read and see!

With this nice weather, there’s just too much to do outside to spend it sitting in front of a computer and …

I’ve had quite a few orders that I needed to catch up on before starting any new projects ….


I managed to finish 3 tablerunners and 2 candle mats with the time that I saved by staying away from the computer.

I’m all caught up now and I’m just finishing up the pattern for this newest tablerunner called “Spring Hatchings!”

100_3612 I’m offering this for as a Preorder special price of $8.50 which includes shipping. This price is good for US and Canadian customers only. All other internationals, just email me for the purchase that will include a small shipping cost.

I should be able to have the pattern printed and ready to mail by this Saturday.

To order and pay, just click on the Paypal button over there to the left where you see the tablerunner picture. If you wish to pay by check, just email me for my address.

This tablerunner is shown as 10” wide and 24” long, but I had an order for one to be made 28” long and it was easy to adjust to that size.

100_3604 To make up for the additional length, I made the flowers a little higher and bigger and the tongues just a wee bit longer. This tablerunner can easily be made even longer than 28” too just by increasing the blank space in the center.

Don’t let the details on this scare you from trying it. It’s so worth the extra time it takes to stitch in all those flowers, but it looks nice with just a few flowers too. Even so, …..


All the chicks and eggs are just whipped stitched so that part goes really quickly. It’s the embroidery stitches that take the time, but again, you can put as much or as little on as you wish.

BTW, the flowers that look almost white in these pictures are actually yellow. I just can't get the coloring right with my camera. I'll work on that today. :)

I like the looks of the whip stitch on the chicks especially …

100_3614a It gives a cute, feathery look to the little chicks.

100_3614b Did you notice the confuzzled little chick that just hatched?

100_3614c An thanks to the special request of my longtime favorite customer, I did manage to add in butterflies too!

That butterfly, in the original drawing gave me soooo much trouble. I just couldn’t get it to look right with so many attempts with different colors and different shapes, I finally gave up on it.

It bothered me though because I knew a cute butterfly in the design would look perfect if only I could get it to look perfect!

All it took was a “nudging” from my customer and the butterfly idea came back into my head and I figured it out. I love this little butterfly and I think the colors blend in perfectly with the rest of the design.

I owe that butterfly to Linda. :)

Brenda, over at Pumpkin Patch Primitives, is offering my "It's Spring, Chicks!" pattern as a kit which includes all the wool felts needed to make this cute candle mat .. CLick HERE if you wish to go over THERE!

Thank you to all that offered advice and suggestions about a new car. I hope to get out tomorrow to test drive a few more before making a decision on which model.

Oh, and my brother-in-law, Mark, warned me to not blog about him but when does a little threat ever stop me?!

I don’t have time to today, but some Mark blogging will be coming soon!

Happy Day everyone!

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Shopping for a New Car

I thought that perhaps I better blog today because I’m getting the “where are you” emails from those addicted ones who have made me a part of their daily routine. :)  Such nags! 

Ok, before I forget … All the preordered “Springtime Garden” patterns went out in the mail yesterday.  They are on their way to your home!  Thank you for such a terrific response.  I’ll leave the special offer of $8.00 for the pattern, open for a few more days.  Just click on the Paypal link to purchase.

The springtime colors wool bundles that are used for that pattern are sold out now.  Thank you to those of you who ordered the wool. 

Ok, so I’ve been considering the purchase of a new car.  I’ve a 2000 Ford Taurus that has over 125,000 miles on it and although it’s been a great, dependable car, it’s beginning to look like a 10 year old car with some rust and a few dents .. one from a hit and run and the other from a sweet little old lady who backed oh soooo slowly into my car, going about one mile an hour.

Basically, I love my car.  It really is like a family member because it’s been with us for so long.  If I do purchase something, it’s going to become a new family member that will be around for a long time, so I know that I have to be really careful with my decision.

I might have narrowed it down to either a Honda Accord, like this one ….


Or a Ford Fusion, like this one …..


I dread the entire wheeling/dealing process with car buying.  My hubby bought a new truck last year and pretty much got the price that he asked for simply because that was during the time that no one else in the country was buying a car, so car salespeople were salivating over a live, warm, interested body and would do anything to get a sale.  That was really the perfect time to buy a car. 

All of you readers out there … if you have any suggestions at all about how to go about wheeling and dealing with car salespeople just let me know. 

I do know that I’m not taking hubby with me for the wheeling and dealing because he hates it so much.   He usually ends up telling the poor guy off and then walking out.  Not a good way to wheel and deal but I do remember a time that he did that and the salesman AND sales manager chased after us on foot as we were driving out of their lot,  begging us to come back in  ..that they’ll give us our price.   Hubby was soooo angry that he refused to deal with them.   Oh that was a fun time…. Ironically, Rachel (dated, I think) is good friends with that sales manager’s sons but my husband will still never ever speak to that manager again.

So today, I’m going to drag myself over to the Ford dealer to do a test drive. 

Gah … I really dread this.  If anyone LIKES dealing with car salespeople, please offer to do this for me? 

It’s probably the main reason why I keep my cars around for so long after I do purchase.


I’m still working on getting another pattern ready to sell .. it’s the tablerunner with the hatching chicks one that will be released next.  I took on a bit too much with orders for finished items though, so my fingers are busily stitching away working on orders.  Once I get caught up with finished things in the mail, I can go back to focusing on new things. 

EDIT:  I’m not complaining about orders for finished items at all!

Sometimes, I get sooooo tired of seeing a certain design, I just can’t bring myself to make any more of them so I will turn down orders just because of it.

I have to be able to enjoy doing it, otherwise my work will suffer along with me because I’m doing something that I don’t want to do. 

So if you do happen to see one of my designs anywhere and wish to order it finished, just let me know.  As long as you don’t mind being on a waiting list, I can get it done for you. 

Most of the time, it’s a pleasure to be able to stitch without concerns about creating a pattern from it simply because the design was already done!

Following a pattern is always easier than creating one from a scratched out drawing on a piece of notebook paper!  :)


Ok, I’m off to test drive cars today!  Wish me luck!

Happy Day Everyone!

Friday, March 12, 2010

It’s Preorder Time!

Gosh, I’m up really early this morning.  I like to try to sleep in until at least 7am but Skitz, our cat, would just not hear of it.

I wish I knew what her problem was this morning but she kept jumping up on the bed, meowing, jumping back down, meowing, jumping back up meowing, times 5 until  I. JUST. COULD. NOT. STAND. IT. ANYMORE!

I had to get up to see if perhaps Timmy was stuck in a well somewhere.  She was just so persistent, I’m sure she was trying to tell me something.  I didn’t find Timmy or a well, so I guess Skitz just wanted to annoy me this morning. (I’m sure, when they read this, my daughters will be like “huh?, who the heck is Timmy?” but I smile with the wisdom of my age)

Anyway …

Yes, finally, the “Springtime Garden” Penny Rug Tablerunner pattern is ready for purchase.

Spring Gardens

The finished size is “10” x 21 1/2”.    The nice thing about this type of tablerunner is that it’s easy to make longer.  Just add extra tongues and flowers to make it whatever length you wish.

I’ve shown it with 8 different colors, (7 tongue colors and the green leaf color) but it would look nice with as little as two alternating spring colors along with the leaf green. 

I will have a very limited number of Spring Color wool bundles available for purchase, so if you’re interested, just let me know and I’ll add you to the waiting list.  I should be able to have the bundles ready for mailing next week sometime.

I’m offering this pattern for a special Preorder Price of $8.00 which includes shipping.  After Monday, March 15, the price will go up to my regular pattern selling price of $9.50.

This offer is for US and Canada only.  International customers wishing to purchase send me an email and I’ll add in the small extra shipping charge.

To order, just click on the “Springtime Garden” Paypal button up there on the left and Paypal will take you through the process.

I do accept personal checks, so if you wish to pay that way, just let me know and I’ll send you my address.

Happy Day Everyone!

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Doing My Duty

If you’re here expecting to read about what I’ve been stitching, then leave now because …

Today, this posting will be entirely about jury duty.


Yesterday, I sat in the Beaver County Courthouse, in a large room with about 100 other people, ready and willing to serve my country. We were told that other than serving in the military, sitting for jury duty was the most important thing that we can do for our country.

I felt pretty proud when I heard that .. until I remembered that most of us were there because we were threatened with fines and imprisonment if we didn’t show up!

I certainly don’t want to go to prison … can you imagine me, showing up in prison with all the hardened criminals? The prisoners would ask me what I was in for and I’d have to lie and make up some crime because surely they’d laugh at me if I told them that I was there because I refused to show up for jury duty.

Regardless, I did show up and I was a bit excited to be there just for the experience.

The jury waiting room was a large carpeted hall with cushioned chairs. Since I knew that I was going to possibly be sitting in the same chair all day while I waited to be selected for a jury, I was careful to select a chair with the least amount of stains.

That happened to be right next to my new best friend!

Whether she wanted to be my new best friend or not, it didn’t matter, because I sat myself down beside her and she had no choice at that point. It’s the unspoken rule that once you pick a chair, you can’t get up and move to another chair for fear that the person you’re moving away from will be offended. She was stuck with me.

Her name tag told me that her name was Donna. So Donna and I had a grand time, talking about our kids and grandkids and wishing we were in Maui right now. Maui will be my new vacation destination, so anyone reading this that happens to live there, please be my new best friend so that I may visit?

Ok, I’m getting off topic very quickly here so back to Jury Doooty.

Once everyone was seated, things got started, which means we were told where the bathrooms were, where the coffee and water was and TO NOT LEAVE THE ROOM for fear that we would find an alleged criminal to talk to about their upcoming case.

Ok! I won’t leave the room, I promise!

Shackle me to my chair if you wish, I can do it for one day, no problem!

We had a real live judge come in to speak to us. I recognized him from when Rachel used to do “Mock Trial” in high school. He was one of the toughest judges Rachel had to present her cases to.

So the judge informed us that there were 39 criminal cases that needed to select juries today. Since criminal cases generally take longer than civil cases, we should expect at least 3-4 days in a courtroom, if we are selected.

He told us, to my relief, that none of the cases were serious enough that we would have to be sequestered in a hotel. Gosh, I’m so thankful for that because I forgot to pack extra undies.

He went on to tell us that just our presence there today was intimidating enough to make most of the cases settle out of court before going to jury selection.

We just needed to sit and wait for the attorneys to call us in for their case.

Well, all of us waited and waited. From 8am to noon, we waited.


We were excused for lunch so we could finally LEAVE THE ROOM. We weren’t supposed to strike up a conversation with the alleged criminals that we saw in the hallway though. Darn, I was so looking forward to bonding with a bankrobber. Not to be.

My new best friend and I walked into town for some lunch.

On the walk back to the courthouse, some crazy lady in a car pulled off to the side of the road, rolled down her window and screamed, “have fun today!!!” and then sped off. It looked a lot like my sister. She does work in Beaver, and the car was identical to my sister’s car …. well, yeah, that crazy lady probably was my sister (casserole Carol). :) I instructed by the judge to not speak to strangers who might potentially be criminals on trial, while doing lunch, so I wisely decided that should include crazy ladies who stop at the side of the road and scream “Have fun today!”.

Anyway, to make a long story even longer, we spent the rest of the afternoon, waiting. None of us were ever called in to experience the selection process because every one of the cases settled out of court!

I was kinda disappointed to not have that experience, but I really was concerned about the babysitting issues if I were selected for a jury, so it worked out.

I served my country and all I had to do was sit in a chair for 8 hours and chat! They paid me $9 for it and I acquired a new best friend too!

Happy Day everyone!

Monday, March 8, 2010

New Pattern and Jury Duties

This new pattern called “Springtime Garden” is being printed today so it should be ready to go in a few days ….


I usually do preorders with my new patterns, but I’ll have to wait until tomorrow or Wednesday to announce when the preorders can start.  It all depends on the courthouse.

I have jury duty starting some time this week, I think.  I had to call last week to find out what day to report but the recorded message at the courthouse told me that they haven’t decided which day they wish the honor of my presence.   I’m told that I need to call today after 4pm for the time and day that they wish for me to report for duty.  I hope the message will tell me to report tomorrow so that I can just get this over with.

Jen and Jason need me to babysit on Thursday and Friday and without me, one of them will have to miss work so it’s pretty important that I don’t get the jury duty on either of those days.

It’s annoying to have to wait but there’s nothing I can do at this point.

So anyway, if I have jury duty, I will not have much time to get patterns ready for mailing so y’all will have to wait with me!

I really love the pretty spring colors in this design.  I might consider selling the spring colored wools to go with this pattern too.  It really depends on when my wool order will be delivered and how soon I will be able to get out the dye pots and of course, that all depends on my jury duty time too!


This weekend was a good one.  Rachel came home for the day on Saturday to use our washing machine visit because she missed us.

She left for her Florida spring break trip yesterday so she wanted to wash all of her dirty clothes before she left spend some quality time with us before she left.  :)

We did have fun.  We shopped and we went out for dinner.

Aww,  Rach  called JUST NOW to tell me happy Florida day! haha…she’s happy to be cramped into a hotel sized condo room with 4 other girls and the ocean right at her doorstep.

She really is a perfect daughter.  She texted me throughout their drive down and when they arrived so that I wouldn’t worry.

Whoops, I should say that Jen is a perfect daughter too.  I raised two nearly perfect girls.   But please, as perfect as they are, I hope y’all will let me know if you happen to see Rachel in a “Girl’s Gone Wild” video so that I can promptly disown her.  :)

I’ve been asked about this design …


I want to tweak the design a bit more before I make it into a pattern.  I hope to have the “tweaking” done by next week.

Happy Day Everyone! 

Thursday, March 4, 2010


See, I really believe that if we say the word SPRING often enough, it will come!

Ok, here’s my latest pride and joy for spring …..

Spring Gardens

I just finished this up yesterday It’s called “Spring Gardens” . It’ measures 10” x 22”. I’ll be making this into a pattern soon so keep watch.

I used 8 different spring pastel colors for this one. It entirely done with the blanket stitch … no other embroidery stitching is used.

I’m so thrilled with how it turned out. I think mostly because I’m not used to working with pastel colors so it was really refreshing to try something different with colors.

I’m trying to ignore all you ladies who’ve requested a tutorial about dyeing wool. :)

There are so many different ways to do it but ok, next time I dye up some wools, I’ll take some pictures and show you how “I” do it. That doesn’t necessarily mean it’s the right way to do it, but it’s the way that works for me. Maybe I can learn from some of the experts who read and I can improve on my own techniques.

It’s for sure one of those things that “the work will teach you how to do it” because it takes practice and experimenting to get the colors that you want.

So my dear daughter, Rachel, informs me that instead of coming home on Saturday and staying here with us during her Spring Break, she’s decided to go with some of her volleyball friends down to Daytona Beach, Florida for the week.

Now, I just don’t understand how she could want to go lay around on a warm beach all day with a buncha girls when she could be here at home with me. We do special things when she’s home . Watching fun tv shows like “Project Runway” and “Bridezillas” has got to be more fun than laying on a beach. Sheesh. These young’uns nowadays. They just won’t listen to wisdom. She will learn her lesson though, I’m sure. After she comes back from break, I’m positive she’ll be apologizing for choosing the beach over ME and her daddy.

Darn. We haven’t seen her much since Christmas because of the bad weather and her volleyball obligations. I want her to have some fun so I’ll deal with her absence, but darnit, I miss her and was so looking forward to her coming home for a week.

This weekend is my friend Kipp’s, quilt show in Hughesville, Pa. Kipp will be a vendor there on March 5, 6 and 7th and will have my patterns kitted up and ready to sell. She dyes her own wools, so I’m sure the kits will be wonderful. Here’s the website http://www.susqvalleyquilters.org/ . If you go, look for her vendor booth “All Sewn Up”. She sells wools, patterns, punchneedle and felting supplies.

Also, for those of you who like my “It’s Spring, Chicks!” pattern, the bubbly and energizingly vivacious Brenda at Pumpkin Patch Primitives , will soon be offering the pattern as a kit. Keep a watch at her site for the new listing. Take a visit to her site anyway,just because it’s a great place to shop and she’s a super special person too.

That’s all for now!

Happy Day everyone!

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Overdyeing Heaven!

I was so hoping to be able to show my current spring project … you know, that one that I had shown a few days ago with all the delicious spring colors. But I’m not quite done with it yet and I’d prefer to show the finished product so that you can get a visual WOW when you see it!

My sister, Casserole Carol stopped in this afternoon, on her way from a business meeting and got a sample view of it. I think she might have liked it too. Thank you for the visit, Carol. You need to come out this way more often for business meetings!

But I do HAVE to show my latest wool purchase that kinda proves that I have an uncontrollable addiction to buying wool.

You see, I REALLY REALLY don’t need anymore wool. I’ve enough now in my stash to last for a looooong time. But I still have to buy it when I see it at a really good price…. It’s all about overdyeing the wonderful textures!

100_3520 Our local thrift store had a 50% off everything sale this past Saturday. The line to check out was quite long with at least 20 people in front of me but I just HAD to have that sports coat there on the far left. It’s simply gorgeous lambswool. So soft and thick and only $2. I would’ve paid lots more for it just because of how lovely this wool is. It even has a lovely silk hankie in the pocket.

I usually don’t buy jackets now just because they take so much time to break down and the effort only gives a little bit of wool. I just couldn’t pass this up though. Sorry, I’m going on and on about this jacket, but it’s just soooo nice! haha … see, I’m obsessed. It’s a sickness, I know!

All these nice textures that I purchased will overdye beautifully so I’m anxious to get them torn apart so that I can start dyeing.

I just can’t wait to dye that lambswool! It will be heavenly!


When breaking down those jackets, ladies, don’t forget to save the nice buttons too! The lambswool jacket rewarded me with 10 buttons of the same size. and 4 larger sized matching buttons. Almost enough to use for my “Love Ewes” sheep pattern … which by the way …..

black hearts

Do you notice anything odd about this “Love Ewes” picture?

The brown coloring of the background wool isn’t good on it but there’s something else that is very wrong with it.

I had pictures printed by York Labs. I use the pictures for the front of my patterns so I ordered a lot from York to get a discount price. All of the other pictures turned out perfectly except for the “Love Ewes” pictures. Do you see all the black hearts?

Five of the eight sheep have black hearts and the one heart in the center turned black.

They are all supposed to be red hearts but somehow in their printing process, some of the hearts turned black. That seems kinda ominous, doesn’t it? I might get scared if I think about it too much. I’m sending them back for a refund, but I wish I could burn them .. quickly!

Hey! I could change the name of this design to "Baa Baa Black Sheep Hearts" .

I’m generally not superstitious, honest.

Ok, back to work for me. It’s a busy week for me. I love it and I love all of you ladies who read! :)

Happy Day Everyone!