Thursday, July 8, 2021



Many, MANY years ago...when I was a dad would paint a yearly picture on our big living room mirror.  Every year my mom would search diligently until she found just the "perfect" Christmas card for my dad to copy.  A few years into this tradition, my mom handed my dad a smaller card and requested a painting for the powder room mirror.  Dad complied, year after year.  One year, however, dad asked if I would like to learn to draw and paint.

It took me almost as long for me to paint this tiny guitarist as it took dad to paint the big picture!  But, I had not only DRAWN something, but I had painted it, to boot!  This continued a few years longer, until we moved.  I was in college, working, and really too busy to tackle our new powder room.  Any thoughts of EVER drawing or painting again went the way of the dodo bird!!

Then, at the end of last month I got the itch to draw again.  I really don't want to count how many years it has been since my powder room painting days, LOL.  The above is the result of my first try.  My dad, and many of my paternal relatives, are a whole lot better than me, but I had FUN picking up his colored pencils and drawing something simple...straight out of my head.  I framed it to remind me of Dad's teaching so many moons ago.  

I started watching a few YouTube videos to learn some technique.  One suggested that I draw something sitting right in front of me.  The Prevagen bottle was sitting on my desk.  See, I'm showing my age, LOL.  

Next, I looked around my sewing room to find something colorful to draw.  My eyes fell on a brown reed basket filled with balls of yarn.  You would not believe my excitement when my grandson saw me drawing and said, "Nice, balls of yarn".  He recognized it from my beginner attempts!

So I am back into drawing, quilting, weaving, sewing,  and a million other things!  There are lots of things happening in my life right now that I can't quite share...but I will keep you posted!  Have a great day and stay creative!!


Tuesday, March 30, 2021

What Am I Waiting For?...


Many years ago, before I had even met my husband, I had begun my "hope chest".  I was a bridesmaid in my cousin's wedding and spent hours pouring over bridal magazines.  I happened upon a beautiful china pattern and an Oneida flatware set that I loved.  I was twenty years old and single, but I figured that at some point I would have a home, whether I remained single or married some day.  I loved them both and I was getting them!!!!  I opened a charge card at a nearby department store and joined their "china club".  Every month I received a place setting or serving piece in my beloved china pattern.  I subsequently joined the Oneida club and began building my flatware.  By the time my husband and I met and eventually got engaged my "good stuff" was completely bought and paid for.  

It stayed in boxes for the next 8 years until we purchased dining room furniture.  And THERE it has sat for almost 28 years!!!  Recently our everyday flatware has begun to show wear.  It probably has many more years left in it...but an idea began to niggle at the back of my brain, "What Am I Waiting For?!?!?"

I pulled all of my everyday flatware out of the drawer and donated it to someone in need.  I am now using my "good" flatware every day!  Isn't it pretty?  I'm sure I won't be using my good china every day, but when my husband and I downsize to just the two of us I plan to use it for holiday dinners, and maybe even Sunday brunches!  At 60 years old I have finally realized that today, tomorrow and every day after that ARE the special days of my life!  

What have I been waiting for?


Monday, March 29, 2021

Within...The week of 3/21/21


Most people pick their "word of the year" in January.  But, as usual, I'm not most people.  After a LOT of thought I have finally come up with my theme.  WITHIN.  For the past year we have all been stuck inside the house, thanks to Covid.  I have been stuck inside, but have I really lived within?    No...I haven't.  I've bounced from room to room, activity to activity...but I have never actually embraced the within of my HOME.  It's time.  Time to slow down and look at everything within those walls and gauge it's place within my home.  As in the KonMari Method, I need to measure each item and each activity (with a bit of my own twist).  Does it show the love I feel for my family, does it contribute to our health, peace and contentment, and does it bring us real happiness within?   


On Sunday my son and I went through the remainder of G's clothing.  I never realized she had so much, lol.  However, in going through her things I was forced to really LOOK at each item, being mindful of how it could best be used in her honor.  Was it something that I thought her son may want some day?  Was it something I could use to make her son a remembrance?  Was it something that J would want to keep because of the memory held within?  Was it something I could wear, feeling wrapped in her arms in the process?  She was a hugger, just like me.  Was it something I could use in my crafting?  Was it something that I thought her mother would want?  Was it something I thought could be donated?  With each piece I was forced to look WITHIN the physical confines of the item and pull out the realm of possibility that lay within.  


By the end of the day I had an enormous number of bags for her mother to go through.  Obviously, she would keep anything she desired, but she would donate the remaining items of clothing to a charity that gave to the needy in the local community "free of charge".  J was adamant that he wanted to "pay forward" the generosity shown to us, by so many, at the time of our loss.  These bags held much more than clothing within!


Over the past week I have broken down several of G's jeans into useable, fairly compact bundles.  I also pulled out jeans that had belonged to me, my dad (now passed), J, K, and my husband.  I will request old jeans from my aunt and G's mother.  I know somewhere I had stashed away several pairs from my mom when she passed in 2017.  They will all be broken down into useable squares of denim to make a quilt for my dear sweet grandson.  I want him to feel the love within, every night.  


I now have mounds of clothing from his Mommy, poppop, great grandmothers and great grandfathers stacked throughout my sewing room.  All of these will be broken down into useable fabric and will find their way into quilts, pillows, bags, etc.  The multitude of family members he has lost over the past 18 months will not be forgotten and  I will do my best to keep alive the memories and love they felt for the little boy who has stolen all of our hearts.  


Thus started MY mission and motivation.  I have broken down dress shirts from my husband and my dad for use in quilts.  There are still a LOT of shirts to go through.  I guess G wasn't the only clothes hound, LOL.  


I have gone through my closet and pulled out a number of t-shirts that don't fit quite right.


After cutting off the bottom edge to make fabric ties (see them used on the bundles of dress shirt fabric a few photos back), I've made "tarn" from the large middle section of each tee.  I plan to use this tarn in my weaving such items as placemats, drying mats, rugs, handbags, etc.  The possibilities within are infinite.  In the process of cutting down these shirts, I've pulled off any buttons and beads, cannibalizing the useful parts within each shirt. 

As a quilter, weaver and crafter it is unlikely that I will ever pare down my supplies to a minimalistic amount.  However, I am determined to purge away all that is extraneous, leaving behind only the possibilities within.   

I have come to realize that this purge is needed not only within my sewing room, but throughout my entire home!  I need to hold each and every item within these walls to determine if they are best serving my family.  But that is not all!  I need to look within myself and purge any lingering feelings of discontent, anger or pain.  They are definitely NOT serving my psyche. Only by digging deeply can I find the kernel of truth, usefulness, and happiness that has been obscured by the trappings of a life lived merely gliding along the surface, piling on more and more in an effort to finally reach that pinnacle of happiness.  But it has never been a pinnacle, has it?  It is in the depths within that we truly begin to live.    

Saturday, February 27, 2021

Table Runner and Placemats

 I finally finished my 3rd weaving project, a table runner and 5 placemats.  I was really hoping for at minimum 6 placemats (preferably 8) but when my finished cloth was only 9' long I knew I would be short Oh well, next time I will just make my warp longer.  I do have a bit of yarn left so I may be able to weave three more placemats.  In any case, I had a blast making these and couldn't be happier with the project.

I do have one question for fellow weavers:  If you look at my placemats you can see there is a bit of a "patterned lines" across them.  Does anyone know what causes this, how I can stop it, or possibly make it more uniform?

Thanks for looking.


Monday, January 18, 2021


 This is my third weaving project.  So far I have only found one mistake...and I MISSED IT...too far along to unweave now.   I'm still loving it, though, so I will keep on going!  I LOVE WEAVING!!!

Friday, January 8, 2021


With the start of 2021 I wanted to try something new on my loom.  I am determined to spend more time crafting.  Losing myself in creating things that are both useful and, hopefully, beautiful calms me and provides me with a sense of accomplishment. 

The smaller multicolored piece was intended to be a dish towel.  I knew it would shrink a bit with washing, but the 100% cotton shrunk way more than expected.  A dear friend suggested I use it in a bread basket.  It will be perfect for that use!  

I used the remainder of the warp thread (vertical string) on my loom to make a table topper.  Because I used solid white weft thread (horizontal string) the piece came out much lighter in color than the bread basket piece.  It is really amazing how using variations of weft (horizontal) thread can change the look of the woven project!

I can’t wait to start my next project!




Happier Times

Twenty-twenty has been hard for all of us, but the end of the year has been particularly devastating for our family.  Right before Thanksgiving our dear daughter-in-love passed away.  It was completely unexpected and fast!  Unfortunately that is the nature of brain bleeds.  We were all devastated and in total disbelief.  Twenty-eight is too young to leave this earth!  Gabby and Justin had just celebrated their second wedding anniversary!  Our poor grandson still needs his mommy!  

Fortunately, our grandson is surrounded by many, many people who love him and will do everything in their power to help him along.  He is extremely close to Justin (his bonus daddy) who he has lived with for over half of his life.  As they have lived with us since April of 2017, my husband and I are part of his daily  routine.  Because of Covid I had been overseeing his virtual schooling in the AM and Gabby would take over in the PM when she got home from work.  I now oversee the entire day, so his routine is still fairly consistent.  We are all holding on, together.  

So 2021 is bringing a “new normal” to our lives.  Justin is learning to juggle being a single parent, and is crushing it!  My husband and I are here to provide support.  He is also surrounded by a wonderful group of friends who have been available to help him through the emotions of losing Gabby, as well as his new single parent status...and their kids have been our grandson’s best friends for years!  Justin and our grandson have gotten together with them a few times since Gabby’s passing (observing Covid restrictions of course) and it has been wonderful to see K just being a kid.  

While I never thought I could find something “good” in Gabby’s passing, the outpouring of love from those around us has been amazing.  In fact, to be shown such love, caring and support from so many in this time of country-wide tumult has been truly miraculous.  Justin and I wholeheartedly believe that Gabby’s purpose in life and death was to bring out the best in people.  We will all try to continue this purpose in her honor.  She was a wonderful mother, Justin’s devoted soulmate and our loving “daughter”-in-law.  We have been truly blessed to have her in our lives.