Thursday, December 26, 2013

Christmas Joy

Now I can share the pillow that I made for my sister -in-law, Joy.
Joy gave me a wonderful feedsack for my birthday a few years ago and I thought it would make a wonderful background for this Buttermilk Basin design. Is that considered re-gifting? :) I don't think that she minded lol.

Here is another view of Christmas Joy - Orion sporting his new Bears jersey and enjoying his favorite toy from his stocking this year.

And this is how we all feel today - exhausted from hosting 25 for Christmas Dinner, but extremely happy and content :) Hope that you are feeling the same today.

If they obey and serve him, they will spend the rest of their days in prosperity
and their years in contentment.
~Job 36:11

Back to work tomorrow, but then it is the weekend :)
Blessings, Patti

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

A Very Merry Christmas!

 I awoke this morning to a sound that I couldn't quite place at first...
Then I knew - it was a snow plow! They didn't predict snow last night... 
I took a peek and sure enough - the inch or so is just enough to cover everything (especially the dirty old snow) and look so clean and bright :) And with temps below zero I know it won't melt before tomorrow!

Today will be a busy day with finishing the wrapping, a bit of preliminary cooking and setting up the tables and chairs for hosting our traditional Christmas Day dinner for 25 family members.
We will attend church tonight, go out to dinner and then open the gifts for the four of us.
Christmas is here!

Wishing you peace 

and joy this blessed Christmas!

May all your Christmas dreams come true!

"So they hurried off and found Mary and Joseph, and the baby, who was lying in the manger. When they had seen him, they spread the word concerning what had been told them about this child, and all who heard it were amazed at what the shepherds said to them. But Mary treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart. The shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things they had heard and seen, which were just as they had been told."
~Luke 2:16-20

Blessings, Patti

Saturday, December 21, 2013

Almost here...

Today I have been baking all day and am almost done. Tomorrow will be devoted to wrapping. Christmas is almost here! I have been trying to sneak in a stitch or two here and there on this fun piece.

As I have been baking, I also came up with an idea for a January 1st offering and am excited to try it out. I am trying to hold off until after Christmas with all there is to do. :)

I also had to share the nutcracker that I purchased at the Christkindlmarket this year. 

German Toy Maker Nutcracker

It is so odd - on my computer it is right side up, but when I add it to the post it is on its side.
Hmmm, I can't figure it out. Any suggestions are welcome :)

Here he is right side up :) (Thanks Roberta! The answer is to fix the pics thru Picasa :)

"Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying, “Glory to God in the highest heaven, and on earth peace to those on whom his favor rests.” When the angels had left them and gone into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, “Let’s go to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has told us about.”
~Luke 2:13-15

Blessings, Patti

Monday, December 16, 2013

More pomegranates

"Pomegranate Runner"
design by Maggie Bonanomi
from her book, "Comfort Zone"

I don't know why, but I have been inspired by pomegranates this holiday season.
First with these and now this Maggie Bonanomi design. I made this runner smaller than the pattern to fit on a specific end table.

(I'm not sure why these pictures are upside down, but it will have to do for now...)

I also finished a Christmas gift for my sister-in-law, but will have to wait to share until after the big day.

And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night. An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people. Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord. This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.”
Luke 2:8-12

Blessings, Patti

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Chicago Christmas Traditions

It just isn't Christmas in Chicago unless you attend a few traditional events...
First is the Magnificent Mile Lighting Parade.
Ok, maybe I wouldn't attend if I couldn't watch it out the office window, but since I can it is a "must go".

My sons thought it was too cold to go, but luckily Bittersweet Sister Kim was game :)
The crowds outside didn't look quite so intense due to the cold.

The balloons had to be held close to the ground due to the high winds.

But the Rockettes still put on a great show despite the weather.

(Sorry about the dirty windows - The Wrigley Building is undergoing major renovations... )

Next stop:

Macy's on State Street (although it will always be Marshall Field's to me.)

This year the store windows celebrate the history of Marshall Field's.

My favorite window is this recreation of Norman Rockwell's famous Saturday Evening Post cover.
The clocks still count the time at each corner of the store and can be seen in the very bottom of the picture with the trumpets above...

Then it is time to walk the block to Daley Plaza for the Christkindlmarket. I stopped there tonight for gluwine and potato pancakes on my way home... despite the below 0 windchills :)  

It is a feast for all of the senses. The official city tree is shown above. 
(Although my favorite tree is the beautifully white lit tree out the Wrigley Building windows in Pioneer Court as seen in the parade pictures.)

I love all of the traditional German crafts.

So much to take in as you visit each booth.

My favorites - the nutcrackers and of course, one of them had to come home with me to join my collection :)
The visit wouldn't be complete without a stop in the Sweet Castle to pick up German chocolates (Kinder Schokolade and Duplos) for certain boys' stockings...shhhh

Hope that you are enjoying the traditions of your hometown!

"While they were there, the time came for the baby to be born, and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no guest room available for them."
~Luke 2:6-7

 Blessings, Patti

Sunday, December 8, 2013

Whole Shebang Winner!

Thank you for the 73 entries into my giveaway!
It was so fun to read of the many needlework retreats that you have or would like to attend:
Shepherd's Bush, Workt by Hand, Primitives of the Midwest, The Woolen Willow, Dyeing to Stitch, Williamsburg Virginia, PALS Myrtle Beach, Tangled Threads...
With teachers mentioned like Maggie Bonanomi, Stacy Nash, Blackbird Designs, Lori Brechlin, Ellen Chester, Gwen Marston...
And the needlework retreat mentioned the absolute most was Boxwood & Berries at Country Sampler in Spring Green Wisconsin of course!
Oh wouldn't it be so fun to attend them all and be taught by such talents!

Well, using the winner of the whole shebang is...
#61 Lisa Johns (no blog)!
Congratulations Lisa! Your package will be on its way soon! Enjoy!

I found a few pictures that I don't think I shared yet of some purchases on my travels...

Oops! Orion, can you please take your bunny elsewhere...

These antique treasures were found on my way home from Iowa

And these on my way home from Wisconsin.

I also found this beautiful swan:

Now hanging on the outside of our garage, where I can admire it from our family room. 
The snow is falling gently around it today, although it is safe under the eaves.

Wishing you a beautiful wintery Sunday!

"The angel went to her and said, “Greetings, you who are highly favored! The Lord is with you.” Mary was greatly troubled at his words and wondered what kind of greeting this might be. But the angel said to her, “Do not be afraid, Mary; you have found favor with God. You will conceive and give birth to a son, and you are to call him Jesus. He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High."
~Luke 1:28-32

Blessings, Patti

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

December Offerings

Merry Primitive Christmas Windowsill Pillow is based on a sweet design by Isabella Abbiati of The Primitive Hare. This cross-stitched piece features hand-dyed linen and floss that has been gently aged. It is accented with a coordinating primitive plaid flannel and is backed with the same fabric. As with all of my creations, it is completely hand stitched. It measures approximately 3 inches tall by 12 inches long and is accented with rickrack, a rusty tin snowflake and several aged jingle bells. Merry Primitive Christmas is stuffed with vintage cotton batting. Perfect sitting on a windowsill or tucked in a cupboard. 
~Sold. Thank you ever so much!~

This sweet table mat and the velvet pomegranate pincushions are sold, but I just had to share as I was so happy with how they turned out :)

Now hopefully I will find a bit of time to make a Christmas gift or two...

There is still time to enter my Whole Shebang Giveaway ~ simply click here to read all about it.
I will be picking a winner on Saturday...

When Jesus spoke again to the people, he said, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.”
~John 8:12

Blessings, Patti

Monday, December 2, 2013

The Whole Shebang Giveaway

Well here it is folks - a giveaway for the whole shebang from my two trips:
The Stitchery Nook Osage, Iowa - JCS Ornament issue and snail tape measure
Milkhouse Creamery Osage, Iowa - Turning Leaves candle
Country Threads Garner, Iowa - "Back to Charm School", Goat Gazette cookbook, Goat Gazette Recipes, notecards, seeds, pencils
Ewe and Eye Osage, Iowa - roll of wools
Antique Shop Saint Ansgar, Iowa - antique buttons
Antique Shop  Dyersville, Iowa - antique keys
JJ Stitches Sun Prairie, Wisconsin - vintage trim
Country Sampler Spring Green, Wisconsin - ribbon and wools

Here is a close up of some of the smaller items.

Like all of my giveaways - it is open to everyone. Unfortunately I do need to limit this to shipping within the U.S. due to the weight.(I am so sorry to exclude those outside the U.S. this time.)
I do have one question for you to answer - What is your favorite Needlework Retreat? And if you haven't attended one, what needlework retreat is on your bucket list?
To enter, simply comment on this post. If you are not a blogger, send me an email to with "Shebang Giveaway" in the subject.
If you are a follower, let me know and you will have two entries.

Thank you so much for joining me on my trips. It has been so much fun to relive it on this blog.
I will pick a winner on Saturday.

"The Son is the radiance of God’s glory and the exact representation of his being,sustaining all things by his powerful word. After he had provided purification for sins, he sat down at the right hand of the Majesty in heaven."
~Hebrews 1:3

Good Luck!
Blessings, Patti

Saturday, November 30, 2013

Star Party ~ Final Installment

All too soon, it was time for our final Star Party Class with Blackbird Designs.

When they presented our class project, my first thought was "absolutely stunning!"
My second thought was "absolute terror!"

As you know I am a cross stitcher and wool appliquer (and this project incorporates both).
I am definitely not a quilter.

As I looked at those little hexagons, I thought that there is no way that I will be able to make this.

Lucky for me Barb and Alma were extremely patient, especially when they saw the terror in my eyes. :)
They sat right beside me and walked me through English paper piecing.
Can you believe that I actually got this far:

And you know what?! I actually had fun with it! 
Who knew! I never would have attempted anything like this if it weren't for Country Sampler's Star Party and Blackbird Designs! Thank you both so much for expanding my horizons!
Hopefully I will find some time in the near future to continue working on the project and to have a finish to share with you.

These were some of the treasures that I purchase from Country Sampler while at the Star Party.
I also purchased a wonderful ribbon to include in the giveaway gift bag.
Hopefully it will be sunny tomorrow and I can photograph the complete giveaway!

It was so much fun to see friends old and new at the Star Party. It was especially nice to meet a few online friends in person! I have corresponded with Rita and Susan online for some time and it was oh so special to meet them in person and now have faces to put with the names :)

When class was over, I had to stop briefly at my favorite spot along the Wisconsin River to take in the views.

The Frank Lloyd Wright Visitors Center is so pretty across the river.

The sand bars were so inviting, but it was time to head home.
On my way, I received one final gift...

A flock of Sandhill Cranes migrating south for the winter. 
There were hundreds of them. 
Endangered in the 1940's, what an incredibly special sight to see them thriving now.

I pulled over to the side of the highway to take it all in and to savor the moment.

Thank you so much for allowing me to share and relive this special time.
The giveaway is coming soon, so please stay tuned.

Come, let us sing for joy to the Lord;
let us shout aloud to the Rock of our salvation.
Let us come before him with thanksgiving
and extol him with music and song.
~Psalm 95:1-2

Blessings, Patti

Thursday, November 28, 2013

Thankful People

Bittersweet Sisters Project by Carla

"Come, ye thankful people, come
Raise the song of harvest home"

"All is safely gathered in,
Ere the winter storms begin."

design by Lori Brechlin of Notforgotten Farms

"God our maker doth provide
for our wants to be supplied;
Come to God's own temple, come,
Raise the song of harvest home."
~Henry Alford 1844

Wishing you and your family 
A Blessed Thanksgiving!

I am truly blessed!
Blessings, Patti 

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Star Party ~ Day 2

We awoke to a lovely morning for the second day of the Star Party.
This year we stayed at the Spring Green Motel.

My favorite part were the resident chickens. The Star Party was in October and I thought this chicken was the perfect Halloween bird :)

There was even a rooster with a matching chicken pecking right beside him.

Our second day was spent in the Country Sampler Schoolroom.
I loved this wreath that greeted us.

and inside there were inspiring vignettes everywhere.

Our morning class was with Stacy Nash and she brought along a trunk show.

The piece that really blew me away in person was "Mustard Seed Manor Sewing Book"

Isn't it wonderful? The finishing is so unique!
The pictures don't do it it justice - in person it is simply terrific.
Lucky for me Country Sampler had it all kitted up and it went home with me :)
And here is our Star Party project with Stacy:

I just loved the colors!
We spent our class time putting our pinkeep drums and strawberries together so that once we were home we could do our cross stitching and wrap it around the drum. How clever is that?!

Once I finished my drum and strawberry, I realized I had enough leftover velvet and wool to make a little strawberry as well.
Since I have been home I've been able to complete the cross stitch on the train and now have a finish:

Being that I always have to change a little something, I left out the year 1820 and added a rabbit instead...

You have been ever so patient as the business of life has meant that it has taken a month and a half to blog about my trip. I have one more post about the final afternoon of the Star Party and then I will FINALLY have my giveaway. I am hoping to start it this weekend :)
Thank you for being so patient with me.
"Come, let us sing for joy to the Lord;
    let us shout aloud to the Rock of our salvation.
Let us come before him with thanksgiving
    and extol him with music and song."
~Psalm 95:1
Blessings, Patti