Sunday, December 26, 2010

Dear Christa

Happy New Year,
I hope you'll enjoy your knitting bag as much as I enjoyed making it for you.

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Merry Christmas to My Two Favorite Nieces

Maggie I hope you like your new purse,
and Mary your Quillow...
Danny send me those hockey T-Shirts if you'd like a T-Shirt Quilt next year.

Merry Christmas and a very Hammy New Year

Thursday, December 23, 2010

To the Magic Makers....

One never knows what that unexpected magic will be each Christmas making all the fuss worthwhile. Good gift givers fall in several categories. Some people are just so rushed, but luckily have enough money to throw a ton of it last minute and come up with a great gift. Some just love the thrill of the hunt and will spend hours “dinking” as my husband calls it, in store after store picking through I don’t know what or at the time why until they pull out a spectacular find. Then there are those of us who have to give homemade. I wish I wasn’t like that, life would be so much simpler, but let’s face it, if you are reading this blog it’s because you do it too. So this blog entry has two intentions, first to wish us handmade gifts givers luck that our gifts will be appreciated proportionate to the thought, time and talent we’ve so lovingly put into them, but also to note that I may have had my magic moment even before one gift was opened.

A few days ago I agonized over cutting up a friend’s heirloom table cloth. Sue found it while cleaning out a closet, remembered it to have been made by her great Aunt Jenny on her mother’s side. The other two things she remembered, Jenny was in a wheel chair, and later in life had hands ravaged by arthritis. Wow, Wow and Wow. All of us know what kind of time it takes to complete a labor intensive task like a quilt or crocheted table cloth. I shudder to think Jenny’s hours might have been tossed away because the cotton she used was disintegrating faster than it could be repaired. I love my tree, and it now seems magical each time I pass it. I used over 100 of her flower clusters and stitched them to squares of thirty year old red Santa fabric, backed in remnants from two communion dresses I made years ago. What could be better? Life is good. Merry Christmas Everyone.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

You Can't Really Tell From This Picture..

17 little loaves of Maple Syrup Malted Waffle Bread with 17 Silk Kleenex purse pouches and a card that states..”Tis the Season for Something Sweet….. on the inside ”and Stylish Sniffling From the Kitchen and Sewing Room of MJ”

Okay maybe not the best segue but I inherited some very pretty small silk remnants which worked up nicely into Kleenex pouches and the bread recipe was novel enough to give it a try.

My work mailbox gifts for Christmas 2010 are officially signed sealed and delivered and I can’t help think that if all turns out as planned, only two more years until retirement …….To Be Continued

Monday, December 20, 2010

I Hated To Do It, But I Had No Choice

A friend’s downsizing, and asked if I could use a slightly torn antique table cloth that had been in her family for years. My normal mantra is “everything’s fixable.” So I said sure.

First I tried hand sewing to reconnect each chain, but the more I handled each torn filet, the more new tears appeared.

Maybe I could use it as a valance and support its fragility with a backing but the dilemma was then do I really want to stitch every cluster?…..Naaaah….

Several days later I came up with the idea of cutting out each “flower” and zigzaging them to squares I had made years ago for what I thought would be themed Christmas Ornaments but never used.

It felt so sacrilegious…..but I’ve been watching French decorating shows on the French channel and they do it all the time, all in the vain of recycling... I cut into the crochet. Now, the question is can I get them all finished this week?….

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

No Rest For The Wicked As My Mom Use to Say..

That’s how my eyes felt after completing this little nuisance…. It started out as a challenge to incorporate batiks into my quilts, but the pattern was just too busy and angular for my taste so I picked out all the appliqué on the center block. I may still add something later. For now I’m just glad not to be looking at it anymore, so off it hangs in a back bedroom…..

It’s Pearl Harbor Day… I miss you dad. I was sad to read that the organization you were so proud to be a member of “Pearl Harbor Survivors” is thinking of disbanding. There are just so few of you left. Hats off to all of you!!