Saturday, May 31, 2014

Wizard and Wools

These past few days, I've been working on round robin blocks. The first is a block belonging to Angie, and it is in memory of her late sister who loved the Wizard of Oz movie...and all things Oz! My part of this Step Round Robin was to do motifs. As fate would have it, I owned a piece of wonderful Wizard fabric and used some of it for the motifs which where then adorned in beads as appropriate.
Next, a Wool Do-Your-Own-Block round robin begins...and here are my six very basic wool blocks. I'm sure that the ladies will send these back to me full of beautiful stitching.
So, have you been stitching?
I'm spending a huge chunk of time lately on getting the three monthly HEX class patterns into Illustrator and the instructions published for a lot of writing and drawing...nothing that I can show.
I also just finished and photographed a very special block for a friend...which I also can't show until it is published this fall.
Today, I hope to catch up a little on my Snowmen embroidery blocks and my CQJP2014 Fairy blocks...if Aidan will be good and not pester her Grandmum too much. We are both tired from a week of playing with Brady...and it is so hot today! Went to the grocery store this morning and we both feel like wilted flowers!

Monday, May 26, 2014

Monogram Mondays - C

Hope everyone enjoyed their day. We celebrated with BBQ at mother's...and strawberry shortcake and brownies. Now, it's off to bed early because little Brady will be back tomorrow morning!

Saturday, May 24, 2014

Any Ideas?

Okay, I have a slight problem...and need your advice. But, before we get into that...this is part of what my time has been spend doing lately...picking up dry dog food. For some reason, Brady loves to get into Buddy's dog dish. I've started picking the water bowl and dog food bowl and putting them up on the counter...but this morning, I forgot. What is so attractive to a 13-month old about dry hard dog food bits? (And kitchen is galley style, small, crowded...and the towel is because my dishwasher leaks at the door seal. Hugs.)
Well, anyway...I've been busy. Now one thing that I had worked for the past couple of weeks are my thimble holders...and thanks to those already having purchased one from my Etsy shoppe. I need to do more. I'm using this plastic liners as the case...
So, I went looking for them on line and could not find any based on my size measurements of about 1.25 inchs tall and across. The industry is more concerned with the volumn of 'stuff' it holds...and not the size. So, I guessed on some based on the photo. Yep, I was wrong...
Here is what I got. Now, I could send them back as they are way too large for thimble holders.
But, they are just so perfect in every other way. So, maybe holders for rings? Or little miniature sewing kits? Any ideas? These are about 1.75 across and tall. Now, that doesn't sound very big...but is about the size of toilet tissue cardboard roll across...but not as tall of course.
My muse needs, please ask your muse if she has any to share. Thanks...and hugs!


Thursday, May 22, 2014

Fresh Hope -- Paying It Forward

I believe in paying it forward...and many people have been there to lend me a helping hand when it was needed throughout my life. While I have been very fortunate not to have a problem with addiction to alchol or drugs...I have seen the effects of this first hand in my extended family and friends. When I learned of the Fresh Hope program, and that they were looking for designers willing to donate patterns to them for resale to help support their cause...I was more than willing to do that. And, since so many of you also design your own patterns...I felt that you might want to consider this worthy cause as well. Even though they are based in Australia...they are still in my heart as we women come together from all around the globe through our crafts and quilting. So, I'm paying it forward a bit...and hope you might do so as well. Here is the background of the Fresh Hope Organization. You can read more about them on their web page, and order their patterns if you wish. If you are interested in helping, you can contact Mary Jibson via email.

In 1998 when Karen Bartlett was working as a Family Support Worker she came in contact with a young lady suffering from AOD addiction. After spending 6 months in a therapeutic community she left; the Department of corrections suggested that the young lady finish her time residing with Karen. During the next 12 months as they took on the role of carer Karen & John were shown a different side of life through the eyes of their young friend. This lead to more young people coming to live with them and in July 1999 Karen & John resigned from their jobs and opened their doors, Fresh Hope was born.
In the beginning Fresh Hope, both males and females with AOD addiction were accepted, however within four months of starting a specific target group was identified which Karen's heart was drawn too, that of mothers with children. Not only had Karen and John found their niche they had also discovered a massive gap in service provision in the AOD Sector. Fresh Hope become, and still is, the only rehabilitation centre in Queensland that keeps mothers and children together through the rehabilitation process, allowing the mother to overcome her addiction as well as learn how to parent her children in a safe environment.
Fresh Hope has been a faith based ministry from the beginning and the first items that John & Karen had faith for was a horse and a bus. Since those humble beginnings Fresh Hope has grown.
Fresh Hope began operation in a rented three bedroom home on the Darling Downs and in 2003 the organisation purchased a 6.5 Acre Property with a five bedroom home. With overwhelming financial support of the local community and supporters the mortgage was paid off within twelve months.
Since 2003 a further four buildings have been added to the property. Two houses for staff, a cottage for residents preparing to graduate from the program and another five bedroom home which will become the second residential home in the near future.
Also in 2003 Fresh Hope became a member of the Australasian Therapeutic Communities Association. The Membership has enabled John & Karen and staff the ability to attend Professional Development workshops at their Annual national Conferences as well as network and visit other Therapeutic Communities.
John & Karen worked full time for nine years with no personal income taken from Fresh Hope. In 2008 Fresh Hope received some funding from the Federal Government to cover some of the cost of wages for the staff that had previously been volunteers.
The Fresh Hope program and the work of John & Karen has been recognized and commended with the following achievements';
  • 2008 Suncorp Community Spirit Award – Karen Bartlett.
  • 2008 Toowoomba Business Excellence award – community category winner – Fresh Hope
  • 2007 Significant Contribution to a Therapeutic Community by an Individual. Karen Bartlett.
  • 2007 Suncorp Queenslander of the Year Finalist – Karen Bartlett
  • 2006 Suncorp Community Spirit Award Finalist – Karen Bartlett
  • 2005 Pride of Australia Medal Finalist – Community Spirit - Karen Bartlett
  • 2003 Chronicle Volunteer of the Year Award – Karen Bartlett
As a Therapeutic community Fresh Hope is at the forefront of Therapeutic work here in Queensland that supports mothers with their Drug and Alcohol issues. Fresh Hope is a live-in Therapeutic Rehabilitation home with a program that goes for 12-18 months. The Fresh Hope program is open to any mother with a Drug or Alcohol problem who can bring their children to live with them. We have no minimum age or maximum age limit.
Fresh Hope Program Objectives
  • To assist mothers, suffering substance abuse, in leading an addictive free life
  • To facilitate each mother to form and maintain the bond between mother and child during rehabilitation thus establishing effective parental involvement within the family model
  • To assist each mother to develop a work ethic and enhance their life skills thus enabling them to be an effective community member
  • To assist mothers and children to develop healthy, wholesome friendships with peers, developing skills for future healthy relationships
  • To assist mothers in providing the children with the confidence of a secure family relationship

Monday, May 19, 2014

Monday, May 12, 2014

Saturday, May 10, 2014

Do You Read For Pleasure?

My daughter is seriously the queen of reading for pleasure..and goes through books very fast. A couple of years ago, she took over my Kindle Reader and I've been downloading e-books for her routinely. Well, last week I stumbled upon a company that has make my life so much easier...that I wanted to share them with you. The company is BookBub and they send me an email almost every day with the latests great deals on e-books for my Kindle (they also work with Nook, and other readers).
They do not cost anything to be a member...nothing, nada, not one red penny! And, they don't hound you with multiple emails about other deals or products. Just their almost daily single email that lists all of the books available that day (and some for longer than a day). They include the photo and writeup on the book...and all you do is click and it takes you right to the Amazon book page for you to download the e-book just like you'd normally do. Don't know just how the other readers work...but they do offer worth checking them out. I just download six more mystery, romance, and fiction books for Sommer's kindle...all free. They also had some for 99cents and 1.99...but, I don't even bother with those. In the past week...I've gotten her over a dozen she will be set for a while!
Here's the link for trying BookBub...and I am not getting paid for this...I just seriously think they are a great company and save me tons of time 'remembering' to go look for books...and not having to wonder if Sommer is "out of books".
And, these are not "partial book" you get the entire book. Sometimes publishers will offer a book for free for a limited time to help introduce new authors, or promote a sequel by offering the prior book, or just to promote a new book. If you are not aware of this "timely" miss out. So, this company has a great idea...worth passing on to friends and family that read too!
Aren't I a good sales person for them...too bad it's not a paying gig! Ha!

More Thimble Cases

I'm still working on thimble cases...and really enjoying these little treasures. It is fun to work in such a small scale...and challenging since the main work area is only about one inch tall. 
And while it still takes a few hours to make one...the real work is in thinking up an idea that will fit such a small area. But, designing is you already know! These are also easy to pick-up and put-down so I can work on them during nap times with Brady. The little dusty rose one has bullion and french knot a little garden.
The green one has berries of seed beads and a trailing vine.
My muse is happy working on these...and that's a great stress buster too. And, I've needed that particularly lately!!
These two are added to my Etsy shoppe.

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Fan Block for Barbara

I'm the last to stitch on Barbara's set of blocks...and my block chosen is her peach/orange fan. Here, I've begun by adding some lace trims...
Next, some silk ribbon. You know I love roses and how they look on went with three different types of neutral/medium tones for a romantic look.
Ended with more embroidery and lots of beads.
Ready to mail when Barbara returns home in a couple of weeks.

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Thimble Cases

This weekend I made a thimble case for a friend...with silk ribbon roses on the sides. The case is hard plastic lined, not with cardboard which would be an issue if it got wet. The liner is covered in wool felt, not craft felt. It should last a long, long time!

The inside has a wool covered bead that is secured to the bottom. This will hold the thimble in place and should keep it from rolling around.

The little closure is a stone bead in pink with a pink elastic band. It was the only little elastic band I had...and wasn't it fortunate that it was pink...just perfect. I had such fun making this little case that I did two more for the Etsy Shoppe.

The first has lilac and roses on the case.

And the next has SRE sunflowers. I have enough plastic liners to create about six more...if I can think of some embroidery ideas for them.


CQI Round Robin Updates

Just finished up my round in the 10" Step by Step Round Robin...and the block has been mailed on to the next stitcher. This is my first Step type of robin to participate in, and I'm finding it very limiting. The next person gets to add silk ribbon and more motifs...and it was hard not to put silk ribbon or beading down now. But, the challenge is also part of the, I'll have to save my SRE work for the block received this month!
Also, receive back my Fan blocks...and aren't these so pretty?!!? Yep, they are!
Above stitched by Barbara R.
Above stitched by Colleen A.
Above stitched by Ritva P.
Stitched by NickiLee S.
Stitched by Shelly R.


Monday, May 5, 2014