Sunday, November 25, 2012

Gearing up for gifting

Our department joined with another at work so that we share an open office space.  Along with that, we have three long-term temps working with us.  I have decided not to increase my gift expenses at work, but to make the same amount go twice as far.  How many of us get caught up in the office holiday gifts...buying for folks out of obligation.

I looked through to find something.....something.....unique.  With all those crafty folks, of course I found the perfect thing!  I've sent for these seed papers and will put one in each card for the folks in my open plan office.  No favoritism and no one will be left out.  The best part is that I am supporting an individual, like myself.  (I also found instructions online to make these, and it is very simple and fast!  If you are interested, it looks like fun.  Due to the time of year, I don't have access to seeds so I'll save that thought for next year.)

Yesterday afternoon my throat started that slight scratchy-ness to let me know that I'm in for a bit of a cold.  And yes, this morning it is full-on hurting.  I'm off to pick up some fresh ginger to mix up some of this.  I stumbled on this recipe two days if it was waiting for me.  I think some zinc lozenges and this mixture will be by my side for a few days.

I mentioned some sewing in my last post.  Well, I'm proud to show you what I made.  I used the scarf instructions in Denyse Schmidt's book "Quilts" to put together a foundation-pieced wool scarf.

The materials are all new but could have been recycled.  All the wool pieces had been given to me, I had the muslin to use for the all I bought was a half yard of a very soft, thin velour-ish fabric for lining and accent stripes.

I added a section of vintage lace.

It's super easy although time consuming, having to press each piece after stitching so they lay flat.  I will be making another without the lace, and they will be sent off by the end of the week.

Wishing you a wonderful Sunday and a great week.  I'm going thrifting today to see what I can find.  After that, there's a turkey in my fridge waiting to be roasted!


Thursday, November 22, 2012

Turkey and denim

I'm a guest at today's Thanksgiving feast at my brother and sister-in-law's house.  She is the most marvelous cook!  All I am bringing are some beverages, but I help with kitchen duty.  SIL found that we work well together in aprons, and we get things done easily.  My mother will again be given the honor of relaxing in the living room with everyone else until the food is on the table.  When I return home I expect to be full and happily tired.

I decided to cook a turkey this weekend and needed to buy it while it was still on sale.  Funny how 0.59 per pound turns into 1.59 per pound on the same exact bird overnight.  Those turkeys that didn't sell for the holiday suddenly become cost prohibitive.  Anyway, it will make a lovely pot pie, turkey sandwiches, soup, and more over the winter.  (And it will be shared, making it doubly tasty.)  But to get this bird, I had to venture out to the grocery store yesterday afternoon while everyone else was out there shopping for those forgotten items...fresh veggies, fruits, extra packages of stuffing, and beer.  My goodness, the store was crowded!

I am 14 squares short of the total needed to piece my denim quilt so I will venture to the thrift shop this weekend to buy a pair of jeans.  I am anxious to get started, but in the meantime I found the perfect homemade gift.....

I bought this book at a secondhand store last summer because of one project in it.

And I have all this wonderful wool that was given to me.

It's a perfect match.  I will post photos tomorrow!

In the meantime, have a wonderful day.  Happy Thanksgiving!

Saturday, November 17, 2012


I worked on this last night......

Cutting several pairs of freebie jeans and jean skirts into 8.5" squares that will become a disappearing nine patch jean quilt for one of my sons.  I made jean quilts for each of my three boys when they were children, each one designed differently.  I actually hand-quilted each one of them.  But this one will be machine quilted, sans batting, so that it will be used as a throw.

Getting prepared takes the most time (washing, pressing, cutting), so this was a great evening to tackle the tedious part.  I'll stitch these up over the next week and send it on it's way soon.

But this has me thinking......

What would you do with this bag of scraps???

Many thanks to Heidi and Bobbi for hosting Friday Night Sew In.  Follow this link to see what wonderful things were being crafted last night.


Thursday, November 15, 2012

November FNSI

Another month has flown by!  Tomorrow is November's Friday Night Sew In, hosted by Heidi and Bobbi.  I have set aside my quilting for something more pressing....

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

The second thing....

I took advantage of the beautiful twist in the weather (60+ degrees after a freakish snow Nor'easter last week) to take my last Autumn road trip to Northern New England.  It was a madcap Saturday/Sunday trip, over 600 miles and numerous cups of java.

The funky clothing consignment store where I bring vintage items is closing after many wonderful years.  It was the perfect fit for a college town....unique and eclectic.  But it can be overwhelming to run a business and life can take a turn.  I wished the sweet owner all the best in her future endeavours as I picked up the last of my consignment items, which will go into my etsy shop soon.

As I ran through town, I visited with my youngest son and my future daughter-in-law.  They always amaze me.  Two very sincere young folk who live life to the fullest.  They enjoy the outdoors and doing, being.  I think they've discovered the secret to happiness that we all seek.

There is another consignment shop on my rounds, where I found two great tops.  It's been cool in the office and I wanted something to wear over a light blouse.  These two will be perfect and they were on the dollar rack....score!

Then I met up with old friends, had a wonderful home cooked dinner, chatted till late, and slept like a log.  It was a shame to have to leave on Sunday morning but I drove home, unpacked, and settled down with a nice cup of tea.

So yesterday I was saying that two things caught my attention during the past few days, one being tagged to answer some questions about me.  The other was something else I want to do with crafting.  I love repurposing things, making something new from old, so I am embarking on a quest to learn a new skill.  My sister-in-law is going to show me how to use her new "sewing" machine which does everything except scramble eggs.  Yes, it quilts, too, and I may take advantage of that.  All of this comes 'round to opening a new etsy shop which will be for my creations.  I will have it set up before this year's end.  All this hectic year at work, I wondered if there wasn't a more personal, meaningful way of life for me.  This is my first step in finding out.  Please wish me luck.

Have the best day yet!


Tuesday, November 13, 2012


Sometimes it's like your head is in another place, lost in the hectic pace of work.  Then you suddenly realize that someone has been talking to you and you wake from the fog.  I've been in that fog lately, but I have hope!

This past year has been tumultuous where I work, with several radical personnel changes that resulted in my shoulders carrying the weight of two desktops for what seems like forever.  Some temporary workers were brought in to try to alleviate the workload, but that made things worse.  A few weeks ago the vacant position was filled and I have been training the new person (yet another task!)  Yesterday felt more like the "old" job.  The newbie opened their wings to fly, taking on duties and proving their strength.  I can see light at the end of this tunnel.  All those nights of dropping on the couch, exhausted, after work may be coming to an end!

Coinciding with this were two more happenings.

One was being tagged by Embroiderymad.  She asked me to answer these questions:

1. What is your favourite craft?
I adore all handwork.  I love to sew and quilt.  I can knit and crochet, but I have also taken woodworking classes and have refinished furniture.  I have always wanted to learn to work with silver.

2. Do you have a special room for craft?
My dining table seems to be designated for that. {*smile*}

3. Do you live in a large city or a small town?
At the edge of a big city surrounded by mid-size towns, but a change is on the horizon.

4. What are your favourite colours?
All sincere tones....earthy.  Any shade resembling a stormy sky or a pile of leaves, or the many colors of rock.

5. Do you have any animals?
Sadly, they are not allowed by my HOA.

6. Do you like to cook?
Yes, but not at the moment ;)

7. Do you use recycled goods or do you always buy new ones for your craft?
I enjoy challenging myself by choosing recycled (even vintage)  but new is good, too!

8. Do you have a craft group or do you just do your own thing?
I haven't found a craft group in this immediate area but keep in touch with some distant friends for ideas and support.

8. Do you grow your own veges?
Sadly, another HOA issue.  But I have covered my deck with planters and buckets that contained zucchini, potatoes, and green beans!

9. How many craft books do you have?
Not as many as I'd like ;)

10. What is your favourite TV show.
I gave away my television over 3 years ago....and love the feeling of independence.

11. Do you check emails and blogs as soon as you get up in the morning?
Shortly after rising I check all the wonderful blog updates while making my coffee.

I'll tell you about the second thing tomorrow.....
Until then, have a wonderful day!


Wednesday, November 7, 2012

It's beginning to look a lot like.....

It's only November 7th and work closed early because of the accumulation of wet, heavy snow.  It started early and continued all day.  By quarter to 4, when the office closed, I cleaned at least three inches from my car before driving on roads that were getting slick under the white stuff.  I'm in the 3-6" zone on this chart from the weather channel (very close to the coast):

This is very unusual for the southern tip of New England in November.  My thoughts go out to the folks who are still recovering from Hurricane Sandy and now going through this!

Morning update: It continued through the night, but I haven't heard the total accumulation yet.  The crazy (but good) news is that it's going back up into the high 50s this weekend.  What a ride!

Stay warm, and well!

Friday, November 2, 2012

Small blessings

I came home to this.....

.....and just in time!  It may go into the mid-30s tonight....
Stay warm and safe.