Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Evidence of Giving is better than Receiving

The following pictures are of gifts that I handmade and the people who received them.

My mom with her apron, oven mitt, pot holder, and house-shoes.
Mama's handmade kitchen set matched the colors in her kitchen and, of course, were very well received.

My husband with his Titans fleece hoodie.
 Husband's hoodie was very appreciated and he has only taken it off long enough for it to be washed.

My granny with her new quilt.
 Granny was over joyed at her new quilt and exclaimed, "I was wondering when you were going to make me a quilt!"

Me and Granny with her quilt.

My husband opening his quilt for our anniversary.
 Husband has been wanting me to make him a quilt and had been complaining asking for handmade items for himself as he saw all of these other handmades being created and given away. So, I set to making him a quilt around the time it was just beginning to get chilly outside.
I knew I wanted to make him an Austin Peay State University quilt because he loves AP almost as much as he loves me. We both graduated from there and attend all home basketball games. I created a logo AP pattern out of newspaper and cut out my pieces and appliqued them on. I set it off with two borders and quilted it. I'm pretty pleased with the result.

full view of husband's new quilt


All ready to cuddle under while watching his favorite team.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Merry Christmas!

This is my favorite nativity I have ever seen. It was my grandmother's and she gave it to me. Even though it doesn't include the usual wise men, cows, Mary and Joseph the focus it still there. I love it for many reasons but this year I notice that the main focus is the baby Jesus. Attention isn't diverted by elaborately dressed kings bringing gifts or even a cute wooden manger draped with moss. I love this nativity because Jesus is the center of attention. He is the focus.

 Luke 1:26   And in the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent from God unto a city of Galilee, named Nazareth,

  Luke 1:27   To a virgin espoused to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David; and the virgin's name was Mary.

  Luke 1:28   And the angel came in unto her, and said, Hail, thou that art highly favoured, the Lord is with thee: blessed art thou among women.

  Luke 1:29   And when she saw him, she was troubled at his saying, and cast in her mind what manner of salutation this should be.

  Luke 1:30   And the angel said unto her, Fear not, Mary: for thou hast found favour with God.

  Luke 1:31   And, behold, thou shalt conceive in thy womb, and bring forth a son, and shalt call his name JESUS.

  Luke 1:32   He shall be great, and shall be called the Son of the Highest: and the Lord God shall give unto him the throne of his father David:

  Luke 1:33   And he shall reign over the house of Jacob for ever; and of his kingdom there shall be no end.

Luke 2:6   And so it was, that, while they were there, the days were accomplished that she should be delivered.

  Luke 2:7   And she brought forth her firstborn son, and wrapped him in swaddling clothes, and laid him in a manger; because there was no room for them in the inn.

  Luke 2:8   And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night.

  Luke 2:9   And, lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them: and they were sore afraid.

  Luke 2:10   And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people.

  Luke 2:11   For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord.

  Luke 2:12   And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger.

  Luke 2:13   And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying,

  Luke 2:14   Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.

  Luke 2:15   And it came to pass, as the angels were gone away from them into heaven, the shepherds said one to another, Let us now go even unto Bethlehem, and see this thing which is come to pass, which the Lord hath made known unto us.

  Luke 2:16   And they came with haste, and found Mary, and Joseph, and the babe lying in a manger.

  Luke 2:17   And when they had seen it, they made known abroad the saying which was told them concerning this child.

  Luke 2:18   And all they that heard it wondered at those things which were told them by the shepherds.

  Luke 2:19   But Mary kept all these things, and pondered them in her heart.

  Luke 2:20   And the shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things that they had heard and seen, as it was told unto them.

Friday, December 10, 2010

Christmas Card Wreath Display

I found a little blurb in my Martha Stewart Living mag about a "pinup wreath" for one to display Christmas cards. It looked easy enough so I gathered a few items I needed that I didn't already have from the local Dollar General (hot glue gun and clothespins).

A few days later I complied the listed items and began to work.

You can see said blurb in the left corner of the above photo. It is page 78 if you have the magazine. I knew I had a large hoop but I didn't know what size it was. All I knew was that I had one I didn't use and I needed somewhere to put my cards. When I went looking for it I was disappointed it wasn't wooden, was blue, and only 10" but I figured it would look acceptable enough modern. I also didn't have any pretty cotton ribbon so I used what I had and that was white paper cording that I unfolded and used for my bow. The coffee was also necessary for a morning project ;).

Here it is all completed! I think it looks pretty good. It serves the purpose. I put it in the kitchen in the place of a picture I had on the wall. The clothespins are hot glued one and half inch apart alternating in and out. It was very simple to make and although it doesn't look as nice as Martha's, it suits me. 

In other news, I have been a wrapping machine and my ping-pong table sewing table is overrun with bows and various paper.

I wanted to show you this wrapping paper I have. We found some at yard sales and Husband found a huge box of it in the paper recycling bin last year and brought it home. We never have to buy wrapping paper again but what I wanted to show you were some of my favorites. I wish these were fabrics. The kittens are my total fav, followed by the white and silver with red birds. I'm not sure what else I can do with it but wrap gifts but I'd love to hear someones crafty ideas on how to make something with it.

Let me know if you make the card wreath too because I'd love to see a picture of yours! Leave a link in the comments of this entry.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Tour Of Homes

I've been meaning to post this for weeks now but I haven't had the time or energy because of various Christmas activities and one long cold that would not go away. So, here is the Christmas photo tour of my home:

Living Room tree

Tree Skirt I made

My little snowy village

The mantle

Christmas fabric wreath I made

Table topper I made

Dinning Room tree with a theme of birds/penguins

 <> The tree skirt I made <>>
The staircase

 Merry Christmas!

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Peppermint Pinwheels

I finished the Christmas quilt I have been working on for so long! May I present to you, Peppermint Pinwheels!

The texture on this quilt is wonderful! I used a machine quilting needle and it worked beautifully. It is very soft and a nice weight from the cotton batting. 

The backing is from a king sized sheet and it took up almost the whole thing! I think I cut about three inches off. I bound it with solid white to have a contrast against the busy border print.

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas! I can't wait to get all warm and cozy under my new quilt!

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Oh my aching back!

I FINALLY got a backing for my over sized queen Christmas quilt! Kohl's had sheets on sale for $12.99 so I set out this morning with intentions on finding something suitable for a backing. I was going to get red because they had a nice Christmasy red sheet set that would go well. However, when I saw this print I thought it would go even better. See how it matches the white print I used in the top? (backing on the bottom and the top is folded)

200 or so pins later, I had this:

I also gained an aching back, sore knees and finger tips. I think this quilt will be well worth it all, though. 

I plan to start quilting Monday. I'm not sure how long it will take me. I'm going to stipple it without going over the red stars. I can't wait to get it finished!

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Estate Sale & Craigslist finds

I got some good stuff this weekend ya'll! Check this out:

It is a Lane Antique ceder chest! I got it on Craigslist for $35! At some point someone painted it white and the paint has worn to the point of looking shabby chic. So, I just wiped it down and cleaned the inside out and it all ready for my living room!

The chest's home is in front of my double window in the living room with a couple of quilts lounging on top. It is empty now but I plan to fill it with seasonable quilts. 

At an estate sale I found the following:

vintage magnets!

Look at all this I got:

antique sewing caddy full of vintage notions, two plastic sewing boxes with more vintage notions, and a huge 2yd sized cutting board

here is the caddy all folded up

I also got this cute vintage "writing paper" set with paper and envelopes. It says, " for fancy ladies" on the front! Cute! 

Friday, October 22, 2010


I won't be posting about my quilting adventures for a little while. My in-law's house caught fire Tuesday night and everything since then has been a blur. There is a lot of work to be done. I most likely won't be participating the Blogger's Quilt Festival as I had planned and I may not post here for a while.

I just wanted to give a quick update of what is going on. Our family would appreciate your prayers.

Monday, October 18, 2010

Beauty and The Beast

I bought this table top ironing board at a yard sale over the weekend for $1. As you can see, the cover is a bit sad. It is dirty and a weird fabric and a not so pretty blue. Being the frugal lady I am I didn't want to buy a new cover. I found this tutorial and went to work!

So, here is the beast:

And, here is the beauty:

The tutorial was wonderfully simple and I was able to do this very quickly! It was so fast and easy I decided to recover my main board also.

 The beast:

The beauty:

I'm not procrastinating on finishing my Christmas quilt I have been posting about. I just have not found a backing for it yet. I do not like to buy things full price and haven't been able to find a sheet marked down anywhere big enough for it. I found a nice red sheet at Target but it was a full and I need a queen size. Oh well, good things come to those who wait.

Friday, October 15, 2010

Go Light Your Candle

Today is Pregnancy & Infant Loss Awareness Day. It comes October 15th of every year and for many it means nothing much. I didn't even know it existed before this year. Everyone all over the world is asked to light a candle at 7pm so that for one whole day a candle will be burning in remembrance of all babies lost for various reasons.

I miscarried two babies this year. The first was June 2nd. My husband, Adam, and I had been trying for a child for a year and seven months and then I finally got pregnant. I couldn't believe it when I looked at the two faint pink lines of the test on May 31st. I showed Adam and he just grinned and said, "Oh boy!" What a happy day that was. It was more than happy, it was plain joyful!

We immediately started guessing if I was going to have a girl or boy and fantasising about a child playing happily in our living room floor. I was thinking about how my time had finally come after all those months of hoping and praying.

All that joy was short lived, however, because two very short days later on June 2nd I miscarried my baby at five weeks one day along.

The hardest thing to deal with is that I have nothing to show for my baby. I have no grave to visit and I had no funeral to grieve at. All I had in my mind was an image of a baby lying in a sewer pipe crying for his mother to hold him. Worst of all I didn't even receive a birth certificate. My baby is not even recognized by the state. I had to remind myself that my baby was recognized by God and He is all that matters.

Jeremiah 1:5   Before I formed thee in the belly I knew thee; and before thou camest forth out of the womb I sanctified thee, and I ordained thee a prophet unto the nations.

I had many well wishers try to comfort me during that time but they hadn't gone through what I had and didn't know what to say. Unless you have experienced a miscarriage you don't know what to say to one who has. The most comforting words came from those who had went through what I had. Words like, "it is ok to feel whatever you are feeling and grieve however you want," were a blessing. Other words were well meaning but didn't help like, "you can try again," "at least it was early," and "those things just happen." A word of advice: if you don't know what to say to someone who has had a miscarriage simply say, "I'm sorry."

I grieved heavily for a few days but then I felt a determination to get pregnancy again. I learned that one in five pregnancies end in miscarriage and many people I knew had miscarriages and just didn't tell anyone. I was optimistic I could get pregnant again and have a child just like all those other women.

I got a positive pregnancy test August 4th and I soon learned that having a miscarriage once robs you of more than a baby. It robs you of having pure joy ever again while you are pregnant. You will never be at peace while pregnant because you are terrified of it happening again. You feel you can't get attached because you may loose that baby at any moment.

I made an appointment with my doctor immediately because I just couldn't have that dreaded circumstance happen again. I had my HCG tested and it was going up and up. Everything looked great. I was happy but still a bit guarded. I got through the five week mark with no problems and was beginning to slowly allow myself to feel joyful. I silently thought, "this is it, I'm getting my baby!"

I made it to six weeks and I was really happy then. Adam and I even cruised down a few baby isles thinking about buying those little outfits and pastel colored toys and soft blankets. I had an appointment at six weeks, three days and I was worried sick waiting on the results of the ultrasound. The doctor said I was measuring at four weeks, not six weeks. I hid it but I knew something was wrong. I was thinking in my heart it was just a matter of time. The doctor said not be worried and that maybe the date had just been figured wrong. I really think she was lying to me then.

I got the results of my HCG back on my birthday, August 30th, and they weren't good. The nurse told me they were falling and I should expect to miscarry soon. Her voice was cold and matter-of-fact like. I felt numb and didn't know what to think. I think I was still holding out hope that it wouldn't happen. But it did. That evening my second baby slipped away to be with the Lord.

Another pregnancy without a baby. No grave, no funeral, no certificate. All I had was an empty womb and  an even more empty heart. Turns out that baby stopped growing at 4 weeks and while I was dreaming about what he or she would grow to be, they were already with Jesus singing beautiful songs to Him.

I have since been to a different doctor who has preformed several tests and could find nothing wrong with me. There is no reason for my losses and no reason I can't carry a baby to term. At least, she hasn't found one yet.

Today, I'm not sure I can try again. I'm not sure I am strong enough to go through another loss. I look at pregnant women today and think, "Why are they so happy? Don't they know what could happen?" Many don't. They push miscarriages under the rug like a dirty secret. Some states offer birth certificates for miscarriages at any stage in pregnancy, others will only issue one after so many weeks. It isn't about who is pro life or pro choice. It is about having your loss recognized as an actual loss. Please seek out your state politicians and encourage them to pass new laws supporting the issuing of birth certificates for miscarriages at any stage of pregnancy. Don't allow more lives to go unnoticed without official certificates of birth.

Please light your candles tonight at 7pm. If you don't know anyone who has lost a baby in pregnancy or infancy, remember mine.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Finished Top

Yay! I finally finished the Peppermint Pinwheel quilt top! I purchased the darker red print fabric for the outer borer this morning and sewed it up today. I was worried it wouldn't go well, but I think it is a nice accompaniment! 

I hope to get this quilted next week. I'm going to have to shop for a backing over the weekend. I'd like to do a red or green sheet but I will see what I can find. 

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Gathered Clutch

I made this today while I am waiting to get some fabric tomorrow to finish my Christmas quilt. Isn't it cute? I found the tutorial here.  

I had a little trouble with sewing the zipper but I figured I was just not used to my zipper foot. I think this may be the first time I used it. (I'm seriously afraid of zippers) So, making these should ease me into the world of sewing zips. 

Don't you love the print? It is vintage and I have very little left. I thought this would be a great way to use it. 

I see many more of these in my future!