Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Less than a week

Whew, less than a week until Christmas. It seems like everyone is asking "are you ready for Christmas". I usually just laugh in their faces, but pretty soon I'll start punching people out. No, I do not happen to be ready for Christmas, but as my brother says "it will come just the same". I think he may have stolen that line from the Grinch Who Stole Christmas, so I will give credit where credit is due.
And I don't even have this adorable little excuse for not getting things done. Doesn't she look like an angel? And it seems that she is sleeping really well under that quilt I made her. But it looks like she really needs me to come and cuddle her doesn't it? ;-)
Blatant showing off aside, and meanwhile, back here at the north pole, I'm working on it. I have done some baking, and the tree is sort of up, and some of the decorations are put out. I didn't make all the lovely quilted Christmas gifts that I thought about doing at various times during the year. So, I have decided to make a firm Christmas resolution for myself. As of March I am going to start working on Christmas gifts for 2008. Maybe I can be done in time for "Christmas in July". My problem often is that when I make something for someone I want to give it to them right away, which sort of spoils the idea of getting gifts done ahead of time. I hope all my friends here in blog land are doing better than I am!

Tuesday, December 11, 2007


So, tonight I finished up the last of the gingerbread houses- and a train.......

My family is starting to speak in hushed voices around me, I heard something about a gingerbread 12 step program, something about obsession, and the possibility that molasses and peppermint can cause brain damage.

I find myself searching the candy aisle in every store for more "building materials". Candy is so much cheaper than supplies at Home Depot you know. The other day in ceramics class a little girl came in eating some really cool looking rainbow striped gummy something and I was filled with envy! I just happened to mention to Vanessa that it would be great for a gingerbread house. She sort of gave me a pitying look and said "mom, maybe you need help."

I do freely admit that this has become a sickness. But, in my defense, I couldn't waste any extra dough could I? And I solemnly swear that I am done for the year. (heh heh heh)
But seriously, look at that snowman, isn't he worth a little sugar induced madness? And get a load of my icicles. I love making icicles with that frosting. Jack Frost eat your heart out!

I put the finishing touches on the gingerbread train. Sadly I cannot take credit for the adorable little frosted teddy grahams. Vanessa did those, though after she was finished she admitted she felt a little weird "like something Martha Stewart would do". So, there is a possibility that the gingerbread madness is contagious. Can you see the little teddy graham that fell down on the skating pond? On the other side of the train there is a little fire pit complete with chairs and teddy grahams with scarves and another snowman. The peppermint trees are just treeeeeeeeemendous, (snicker snicker) and I hope that Walgreens carries them again next year! Maybe I should go get the last of them now and hang on to them just in case .............
Before it was all finished I had made this little cottage too. If you notice, the foundation is coffee beans. I brought it in to my favorite coffee shop and they put it on the fireplace mantle. Hey they thought it was neat, and I got a free cappuccino out of it.
They did seem to be a bit concerned too though when they found out that it was actually my second coffee bean house. See, I wasn't happy with the way the beans looked on the roof of the first one.
And yes, that snowman has a hat and scarf. What of it?
Did someone just say something about addiction? Oh good heavens I can stop any time I want. Maybe I should do a clothes line with quilts hanging on it...... and hey, if I were to bake the gingerbread over a family size soup can it would make a good silo for a farm scene........ and then............

Saturday, December 8, 2007


A few posts back I was explaining the Christmas stocking quilt. ( and yes Flori, it does weigh a ton, but then it will pin small children and cats down so I can get something done right?)

Anyway, I'm showing the stockings I made. First we have my husbands Santa stocking. Jim loves old world Santa's, especially in colors other than red.

Next we have daughter number 2's stocking, she likes all things oriental, also her name is Melissa which means honey bee, thus the bee fabric on the bottom.

Here we have daughter number 3's stocking, she loves polar bears, I had this cute panel from something, a vest I think, but of course that would have been waaaaaaaaay uncool so I turned some of it into her stocking. Next to it you can see my little Christmas totebag that I am carrying to work this December.

Now daughter number 4, the one you see the most on my blog. She was very into pink and purple and the nutcracker when I made this for her. Last year she wasn't too sure it was still "her" but when I offered to change it out into something more teenager-ish (is it a word?) she decided she loved it and didn't want anything else. Gosh, that is sounding familiar! I would have probably had to put it on the quilt!

So here is my stocking and a little Santa hanging that I made the same year. Mine has camping and cats, and teapots and a piece of some really neat fabric that had cool quotes on it.

And one more thing to show, this Santa tote bag I made for Vanessa for part of her birthday present. She liked my Christmas tote so much that I thought I'd make her one of her own.

In case you were counting daughters you may have noticed that number 1 is missing. I'm not exactly sure where her stocking is, daughter number 1 is living in Texas at the moment and it may be there, or it may be out in the storage shed with the rest of her things. Oh well, life goes on and on right?

Friday, December 7, 2007

Happy Birthday Vanessa

Not much quilting getting done this week. I just have not felt like doing much of anything. But today is Vanessa's fourteenth birthday and I am going to shake myself out of the lethargy and get a lot done!
Hear me roar! ;-)
Okay, I got cupcakes done! We went through my cookbooks trying to decide what type of birthday cake to make her. I was silently hoping she wasn't going to pick some fancy thing that would take a lot of talent because as you can tell I am not a cake decorator! She got the idea to have cupcakes and she wanted that mix that has the confetti in it. Gosh can we get easier? Gotta love that kid! And, she was thrilled that they said her name! Oh I do sooooooo appreciate simple pleasures.
Speaking of simple pleasures, I was going through my fabrics......... and I found some fabric that I had picked up a couple weeks ago that has blond dog heads on it and a lot of them look like Tundra. So, anyway I want to do something with it for all of us, any ideas out there? I could make the little zippered bags that I do for the shop, or I could make mug mats, but if anyone has any other good ideas I'd really like to hear them. I would love to do pillow cases, but there just isn't enough. I have one yard of this fabric, and it was on the clearance rack at the time I got it so I doubt very much there is any more to be found. I suppose I could use it for the cuff on them, but I hate to cut it up too much and lose the pretty pictures. Dilemmas!

Tuesday, December 4, 2007

Sad day

Our dog died today.

How do I even begin to say how special and wonderful Tundra was? He was such a good friend. I know everyone has the best dog in the world, and that is- was- true of us too.
Tundra had a charming if sometimes odd personality. There are "trails" in the yard from where he would jog around the house. It didn't matter what the season was, he jogged around the house. He followed me upstairs, downstairs, in, out, wherever I happened to be going. He might be asleep on his bed in the living room, but if I went into the den to check emails or play on the computer, he came right in and lay down by my feet. If I went upstairs to my sewing room he followed up the stairs and lay on the only available floor space I have. In the kitchen he lay himself down right in front of the sink, it didn't matter if I was trying to wash the dishes, he wanted to be right there. I'm glad I never scolded him for that, because I would give my sewing machine right now if he was here under my feet.
Tundra loved winter- he adored snow. He would roll in it, tunnel under it, eat it. I think he was happiest in the winter.
Until now, my family are the only ones who knew that I danced with the dog. Yes, I admit it, I danced with the dog. He would dodge from side to side and when I called to him to come dance he would leap around and hop from side to side with me. It really was probably the least artistic or graceful dance the world has ever seen, but he loved it, and I loved to do it with him.

Last January I had some surgery and he stayed by my side from the minute I came home from the hospital. He even followed me into the bathroom to be sure I was okay. If someone came to the door he barked at them to leave me alone.
I am having a hard time believing that I will never look into those liquid brown eyes and see all the love in the world there, or stroke his softer than soft fur and hear him "purr" with pleasure.
Tundra had a wonderful quirk when he looked at you, he would smile and then wink one eye. Just last weekend a good friend was over and when I called Tundra my good ole boy, he said "he just winked at you!"
The wind just got a little colder, the clouds just got a little more gray, and the Christmas lights are dim.
I know we will get past this, but I also know that Tundra took a little piece of each of our hearts when he left today.
Good bye my sweet boy

I love you