Friday, May 22, 2015

Memorial Day

This is my dad in the South Pacific during World War II when he was about 17 or 18 years old.

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

for May in May

The mini fabric sampler I sent to May in the UK for the swap. I really wanted to use this beautiful fabric one more time!

Friday, May 01, 2015

Happy May Day!

This is a cute thank you card that I got from my swapping friend, Deb. She used some of the goodies she received from a giveaway that I hosted on my swap blog. I just love it. It's the perfect image for a lovely May Day!

Saturday, April 25, 2015

Saturday, April 11, 2015

Happy Birthday to my Andrew

I made this little book from a deck of cards for my son Andrew's birthday. The idea of course came from Pinterest. It was fast and fun to make. It made him smile, which is the best part.

Sunday, April 05, 2015

Thursday, April 02, 2015

something sweet from an old friend

My swap friend, Linda made me this sweet fabric brooch for me. I just love it. What a nice surprise! Thank you, Linda! What would we do without our friends?

Wednesday, April 01, 2015

Friday, March 27, 2015

to heidi with love

This is the March sampler that I made for my friend Heidi for the swap, and my first attempt at applique. It was a fun project, but I've decided I'm not a huge fan of working with lots of teeny tiny pieces. My hat goes off to those who do a lot of applique and sew things like Barbie clothes. I think I would lose my mind...and what's left of my eyesight!

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

from Elizabeth...a mini fabric sampler for March

I have yet another gorgeous addition to my (future) garland of mini fabric samplers. Elizabeth had my name this month in the swap.

I love everything about this sampler. The soft colors, the background fabric, the quote, the trims....and especially the love that she put into not only the sampler, but the entire package. Look at the pretty wrappings!

She made the beautiful cup of tea tag, and sent along some delightful buttons with my initials on them! Elizabeth always makes it a point to send unique and special things that she knows you will especially love. She is a very special person. Thank you, Elizabeth! I hope I get the opportunity to make a sampler for you sometime this year!

Monday, March 16, 2015

on St. Patrick's Day...

I often think about an old Irishman. One that I happen to look quite a bit like. This is my dad. He had auburn hair (that never grayed), and pretty green eyes. As many an Irishman from his era, he was somewhat prone to shenanigans and often full of malarkey! And I miss him.

May the road rise up to meet you.
May the wind be always at your back.
May the sun shine warm upon your face;
the rains fall soft upon your fields,
and until we meet again,
may God hold you in the palm of his hand.

Wednesday, March 04, 2015

another sign of spring

For the A Swap For All Seasons February swap, I received this mini fabric sampler from Pam in Arizona. She sent a note saying that she thought I could use a little bit of Spring. Indeed! I really like the vintage fabric she used and she told me that it was from vintage curtains that "didn't wash well". Now I like it even more! She even embroidered the word SPRING~ such a sweet touch. It's a lovely edition to the banner/garland that I'm making from the swap samplers.

Saturday, February 21, 2015

My February Sampler for the Swap

I made this sampler for Jan in England. I made it with a pocket so I could add a few valentines. I hope she will like it!

Thursday, February 12, 2015

Monday, February 02, 2015

Happy Groundhog Day!

It's the day to watch one of my favorite movies!

Saturday, January 31, 2015

The January Mini Fabric Sampler Swap

One down, 11 to go! We've completed the first month of our year-long swap over on my swap blog, A Swap For All Seasons. The first picture is the fabric sampler that I made for Pam.

The second picture is the bea-u-ti-ful sampler (with a matching tag) that I received from Jan in the UK. I absolutely LOVE it! From the sweet baby to the hand-stitched shoes, it is just perfect!

Jan also sent along a few pretties (the 3rd picture) which was so very sweet! She included a note on her very own postcard- created with a photo of one of her creations, a few of her favorite things, and a quote- so cool! It was all wrapped so nicely and the package from the UK had the "Royal Mail" stamp on the outside, which I always love. The contents definitely lived up to the term! Thank you so much!

The last picture is a lovely hostess gift that was sent to me from Elizabeth. She is a member of the swap group and truly one of the dearest people! She sends little thoughtful gifts to me throughout the year, and they mean so very much to me. They have often cheered up an otherwise a dreary day. I love the "L" buttons and the lace is gorgeous! She really has a knack for packaging too- always such a treat to open. Elizabeth, you are a blessing!

Friday, January 16, 2015

my new craft digs!

One of the few upsides of my youngest (daughter) graduating from high school and moving into the lower level "college pad" vacated by her brothers, is that another main floor bedroom opened up! My husband helped me turn it into a wonderful sewing/craft room. I absolutely love it! A place for everything and everything in its place! (well, almost!) I made the patchwork valance and curtain from the fabric scraps I've been hoarding saving, collecting for years. I stole borrowed Mary Grace's childhood bookshelf unit, added another tall one, and purchased an Elfa desk and a small sewing table. I put an old second hand glider in one corner (that I am dying to recover in vintage chenille!) so my husband has a place to sit and read and visit with me. I found an old metal laundry cart at an estate sale that is perfect for my vintage linens and fabrics.

The best part of my new room is the closet. I made use of the built in shelving that was there by filling it with labeled plastic bins to hold all of my crap junk supplies.

I finally have a place to hang many of the wonderful gifts, swaps and handmade goodies that I love so much. And most of all, a bright, happy, inspiring space in which to create. Here are a few pics.

Thursday, January 01, 2015

Monday, December 15, 2014


So often taken for granted, yet so vital to nearly everything we do. I have used and abused mine so much through the years. My hands look like the hands of an 80 year old woman. I could never have made it as a hand model- even when I was young. I have always had short, stubby fingers and terribly thin, bendy nails that don't grow... But nevertheless, they are my hands, and they have served me well. With these hands I have colored, cut, written, sewn, knitted, crocheted, embroidered, crafted, beaded, used a cash register, spent countless hours on a keyboard, prepared meals, taken care of myself, taken care of the sick, taken care of my babies, taken care of 1000's of other people's babies, and countless other important (and totally mundane) things.

These past few years, and particularly this past year, my hands have been slowly wearing out. I have arthritis in both thumbs, a trigger thumb for which I had surgery in August, and now carpal tunnel syndrome in both hands. I had surgery on my right hand in November, and I am just waiting for the symptoms to tell me that it's time to have the left hand fixed as well.

I have had to make a few changes. For one, I can no longer make jewelry. Holding tools and bending wire is nearly impossible at this point. I do still knit and do paper crafts (thanks goodness!), but for short periods of time. Another really big change is that I recently retired from staff nursing at the hospital. I knew I was going to be having 2 hand surgeries, with another on the horizon. Putting on and taking off gloves was becoming increasingly more painful, as were many other tasks. (I struggled to change newborn t-shirts- a task I probably could have won a race doing in my younger nursing years!) I have to be honest here though, I was THRILLED to retire from staff nursing. NO more long 12 hour shifts on my feet with no lunch or bathroom break for this girl!

The picture is my post surgery hand. (I hope it's not too graphic.) I decided to add a nice healing blue border to the picture. I am grateful that it is healing nicely and that I am once again able to do most of the crafts that I love. I am so grateful for my hands, and I no longer take for granted all that they allow me to do.

I hope this inspires you today- to take a loving look at your hands, and say a little thank you prayer!

Monday, December 01, 2014

Did I forget something?

I get so ridiculously sidetracked from blogging. I realize that I never finished posting about my son's wedding! It was perfect! They have been married for 6 months already and seem to be settling in quite well. They got a puppy. I now have a boy granddog ("Oscar", my son Andrew's big guy) and a girl granddog. ("Daffy", Justin & Julie's little cutie) Is this a step closer to being a grandma for me? Let's just say it is!

These are some pictures of Justin and Julie's beautiful wedding day.

Saturday, June 28, 2014

Another First... Part One: Projects and Details

My son got married on May 31st! I helped make much of the decor as my future daughter in law was living here in St Louis, and her family was back in Kansas. The ceremony was in a beautiful little church in Kansas and the reception was held on her family's farm in Kansas. It was such an honor to be involved! I loved every minute of it. She picked things out and I tried to make them! Julie and Justin both cut burlap, wrapped wine bottles, and whatever else I could delegate. Julie learned to make some of it herself! (She swore she wasn't crafty, but she's catching the bug now!) These are some of the projects and details.

The gift table
Vintage suitcase for cards
Justin's cousin in Indiana and her husband make wine.
They made a special wedding blend for the couple with customized labels.
It was kept in ice in an old water trough. Perfect.

Julie's dad was about to move this old trailer out of the way
until everyone decided it would make the perfect photo booth.
Julie's old wagon was filled with the props.
Table Decor: burlap & lace runners, yarn & pearl wrapped wine bottles
filled with paper roses, decorated large jars filled with baby's breath, lace wrapped votives,
and painted tins filled with mints.

Julie and her dad made the cupcake stands with wood from their property.
I made the burlap banner, and many others scattered throughout the reception.
Julie's bridal bouquet included one of her grandma's earrings,
one of my mother's (Justin's grandma) brooches, some of Julie's
broken jewelry pieces, a tiny bunny brooch hidden in the back to make her smile
and relax, a few miscellaneous brooches/earrings, and Julie's grandma's rosary
wrapped around the base. (not visible in this picture) I used lace and feathers to add some dimension.
This was kept a surprise for Julie until the wedding day.


The bunnies are a ring holder that Justin bought for Julie for Christmas because she loves bunnies.
I saw it used as a cake topper on Pinterest, and sent the Pin to Julie. Serendipity! We dolled up the couple
with bowtie, pearls, a bit of old lace and one of Julie's broken earrings. Her Grandma made the cake.

Mason jar drinking glasses with thank you tags attached
doubled as drinking glass and take home favor.

The Programs


Wednesday, June 25, 2014

be still my heart

It is indeed a grace filled moment when your youngest graduates from high school. Bittersweet.