Thursday, December 29, 2011

First Family Portrait

Here's my son, Russell, his girlfriend, Tracey, and newest family member, Sophie! It's hard to look at her all wired up, but that's standard for a premie. The medical folks say she's healthy though, so all is good. I wonder if they got some sleep last night - Nana didn't get much! I'm chomping at the bit to get down to visit them, hopefully over the weekend.

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

It's a Girl!

Well, almost! My first grandchild, a little girl my son and girlfriend have decided to name Sophie, is making an unscheduled debut into the world today! She's about five weeks early and everything has been happening very fast today. My son just called a short while ago to tell me that his girlfriend is being taken in for a C-section. I'm not able to be there for another couple of days but I'll see her very soon.

My son, Sophie's dad, is a wonderful graphic artist. These are some tiles he painted with the baby's name that will be hung on the wall in her nursery.
More wonderful artwork by Sophie's dad! These animals will also be hung in Sophie's new nursery and are waiting to welcome her when she comes home in early February. She'll be in the hospital's NICU until her original due date, at least that's today's news.

I'll be "Nana" soon! Can't wait to meet this little girl who wanted to arrive on the scene before 2011 ends!

Update: Sophie Amber Thomas was born on Dec. 28th at exactly 2:30pm weighing a dainty 4 lbs. 13 oz.! Everyone is doing just fine, although Sophie has some typical preemie issues. Nothing out of the ordinary for an early birth, so say the doctors.

Friday, December 23, 2011

After Christmas Sale

After Christmas, save 30% on all cross-stitch patterns. No codes to enter, I'll calculate your discount manually and issue a PayPal refund for PayPal orders, or apply your discount when I process your credit card order. This sale will run from Dec. 26th through New Year's Day.

Another vintage Christmas postcard. I love these, don't you? I especially liked the simplicity of this Father Christmas, dressed in plain garb and holding an undecorated evergreen.

Tomorrow will be for baking and prepping the holiday feast. The gifts are wrapped, the cards have been sent. Family celebrations were enjoyed weeks ago so it's just me and my hubby for a mellow Christmas day. Enjoy your family festivities and may your holidays be merry and bright and filled with all the warmth and love your heart can hold!

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

Monday, December 19, 2011

Last Call for Mail!

Need a few last-minute things for Christmas giving? There's still time - but not much! Here's the US Postal Service's domestic mailing deadlines:

First Class - Tues., Dec. 20th
Priority Mail - Wed., Dec. 21st
Express Mail - Thurs., Dec. 22nd

Of course, the USPS doesn't guarantee that anything mailed by these deadlines will absolutely be delivered by Christmas. It's always a little bit of a gamble, but any orders I have in-house will be shipped accordingly. Then it's up to the mailman!

I love old antique glass ornaments like this Santa delivering mail. Sadly, I have no idea where our family's collection ended up after my dad passed away several years ago and the house was sold. My mother has since moved twice, so maybe they're in storage. I hope we see them again. We had some great old classic ornaments. At one time they hung on one of those aluminum Christmas trees, you know, the ones that had the color wheel and the whole tree would change colors every few seconds? Back in the sixties I guess! My brothers and I would sit and marvel at the wonderful tree. These days I love my real evergreen tree, this year a 4' one on a table in the living room. It'll hold my collection of primitive and folk art ornaments and some glass ones I've come across over my adult years. It's an eclectic assortment, but somehow everything works together. Sitting on top is the most wonderful primitive Santa tree topper, an old Netty LaCroix pattern.

I have the new Wool Street Journal January 2012 issue. Only five right now, I may get more if these sell quickly.

Just a note to say Thank You for your continued patronage this year! It's a tough economy and many of us don't have the money to indulge our creative passions the way we used to. I sincerely appreciate that you come back time after time to buy what tugs at your primitive heart strings!

Have a blessed holiday season!

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Cookie Dough Truffles

Lovely. I needed to find out about this Cookie Dough Truffles recipe when I can't manage to eat any of these even if I did make them. Oh well, there's always next Christmas, and I assure you, I will be making these! If you do, please let me know how yummy they came out! I'll enjoy them vicariously this time. The recipe came from Food Network.

Cookie Dough Truffles

1/2 cup butter, softened
3/4 cup firmly packed brown sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 (14-ounce) can sweetened condensed milk
1/2 cup semisweet mini chocolate morsels
1 cup finely chopped pecans
1 1/2 pounds chocolate bark candy coating, melted

In a large bowl cream butter and brown sugar with an electric mixer at medium speed until creamy. Add vanilla. Gradually beat in flour and add milk. Add chocolate morsels and pecans, mixing well. Shape into 1-inch balls. Place on waxed paper; chill 2 hours.

*Cook's Note: Since the dough is sticky, roll your fingers into flour. This will make it easier to roll.

Melt chocolate bark candy coating in a double boiler, or glass bowl over simmering pan of water. Using 2 forks, dip cookie balls into candy coating to cover. Place on waxed paper and chill to set. Store in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour.

Happy truffling!

Friday, December 16, 2011


Based on my pain level after having some teeth extracted on Monday, I could probably go for one of these right about now! Amazing that they existed, huh? And Coca-Cola used to be made with cocaine too back in the day. Hope things calm down soon and I can get some much-needed sleep! As a result, orders recently received have been leaving more slowly than in previous weeks. I need my helpful hubby to play delivery man, but this is after I do the processing, picking and paperwork, which I'm not always feeling up to with a screaming jaw! That said, I appreciate your patience and thank you for your orders. My delivery man will hopefully get some packages off to the post office this afternoon, as I know Christmas shipping deadlines are only days away.

Enjoy your weekend,

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Passing it Forward

Brenda, who writes the Past Blessings blog has kindly bestowed upon me the Liebster Blog award! This award is given by a fellow blogger to five blogs of their choosing who have 200 followers or less. This award is meant to be passed forward, so here are my Liebster Blog award picks:

Fish Eye Rugs - Jen Manuell's blog is an inspiration for the rug hooker and I love to see what hooking adventure she's up to next!

From Sherry's Heart - Sherry does fabulous primitive folk art in all kinds of mediums and I love checking out her latest and greatest.

Tom Miner Folk Art - I've known Nancy for many years through my business and she stitches wonderful folk art quilts. She lives in Montana and occasionally posts pictures of the big horn sheep that visit her backyard!

Fully Wooly Primitives - This is Joni Black of Fully Wooly Primitives blog. Joni is a wonderful rug hooker and lover of primitives and wool.

Spruce Ridge Studios - Kris Miller is a very talented, self-taught rug hooker and teacher. She vends at many rug hook-ins throughout the year and offers tons of great rug hooking designs on her web site. Love to see what project she's working up next.

Congratulations to these Liebster Blog award winners, you're all very deserving! There are hundreds of other great blogs out there, take some time every now and then to do a blog crawl and check out all the inspiration out there!

I've tweaked my More Fun Reads and Links You'll Like lists to reflect what I like these days, so check those out too.

Happy reading,

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

On My Frame

This is an Edyth O'Neill design called Cricket Ship. I just started it today. At 7" x 11" it's definitely doable for me. I really like small hooked projects because I can start new things quicker. Gives me some diversion as I had some oral surgery on Monday and need to take it easy for a few days. It was fun color-planning this little rug that will cover a small footstool as this one does. I had a neat heathery purple plaid for the sky and will put a few dark pinks in there to look like sunset. Will post a picture when it's finished. Edyth O'Neill rug hooking designs can be purchased from Woolley Fox. What's on your frame these days?

Happy hooking,

Friday, December 9, 2011

Santa Claus is Coming to Town

This is Old Fashioned Santa from Pineberry Lane. A humble fellow, simply dressed. Great stick legs! Quite primitive, very cool. Another neat Santa pattern from Pineberry Lane is Santa and Elmer, with the bonus of Elmer the reindeer, shown below.

I need to get busy baking a couple of Chocolate Pumpkin Loaves (recipe in my Sept. 30th post) to take with me to our annual early Christmas family get-together tomorrow where I get to play Santa. The other gifts are wrapped, but I promised my mother a loaf of this bread after I told her how wonderful it was. My aunt will get one too, along with a big bag of Maine Roasters Holiday Blend coffee. Doesn't that sound like a great breakfast on a snowy morning? Maine Roasters coffee is similar to Starbucks, strength-wise. To be honest, I'm really not a Dunkin' fan!

Are you doing any holiday baking? One of my Facebook friends posted about all the make-ahead cooking and baking she's been doing, freezing things to be reheated later in the month for parties and just to make things easier once the holidays are in full swing. It's something to consider. I've never done much "big" make-ahead cooking like that but just might try a little.

This would normally be the weekend we get the real tree and decorate, but since we'll be out of town it'll be a week later this year. Hope you're having fun with your holiday planning. Have a great weekend!

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Crazy for Christmas

Isn't this great? It's a wool applique design called Christmas Candle Mat by A Piece of Work, a new designer I've just added to my web site offerings. Done in a crazy quilt style with lots of lively seasonal motifs and embellished with embroidery stitches, these are fun and really cool. There are several more "crazy" designs, all on my What's New page or see everything on A Piece of Work's own page under my Patterns, Wool Applique category.

Stay crazy with Jo Ann Mulally's wonderful Wool Crazy and Crazy at Home books. Jo Ann's illustrations and instructions are very detailed, with lots of tips and inspiration to make her "crazy" projects your own.

And this neat pattern called Krispy Snow Days is from another new design house, Crane Design. I love the neutral colors used, but it would look equally cute in traditional Christmas colors with a blue background. The pattern has instructions for the wool runner and hanging bag. Several other patterns are available as well as some great needlepunch designs. I hope you check them out.

While you may not have time to make some of these before Christmas, there's still time to get them shipped to you before the holiday for gift-giving - but only if you order soon! Hope your holiday plans are coming along nicely.

Stay warm!