Wednesday, February 29, 2012

March Newsletter is Coming...

I am putting the finishing touches on the March Newsletter, which will be sent out tomorrow. Here's a peek at what's included:
 Yummy Recipe....

 Directions to make this quilt....

Free Embroidery Pattern...

Lots of Pretty Photos.....

If you haven't subscribed yet (and it's free), you can do so at the top right bar of this blog. 

Today is Leap Day, and according to
Leap Year has been the traditional time that women can propose marriage.
In many of today's cultures, it is okay for a woman to propose marriage to a man. Society doesn't look down on such women. However, that hasn't always been the case.
When the rules of courtship were stricter, women were only allowed to pop the question on one day every four years. That day was February 29th.
It is believed this tradition was started in 5th century Ireland when St. Bridget complained to St. Patrick about women having to wait for so long for a man to propose. According to legend, St. Patrick said the yearning females could propose on this one day in February during the leap year.

According to English law, February 29th was ignored and had no legal status. Folks assumed that traditions would also have no status on that day. It was also reasoned that since the leap year day existed to fix a problem in the calendar, it could also be used to fix an old and unjust custom that only let men propose marriage.

The first documentation of this practice dates back to 1288, when Scotland supposedly passed a law that allowed women to propose marriage to the man of their choice in that year. Tradition states they also made it law that any man who declined a proposal in a leap year must pay a fine. The fine could range from a kiss to payment for a silk dress or a pair of gloves.
Is anyone doing anything special for Leap Day (like marriage proposal)? Seems like I should, since this is an extra-special day that only comes around once every 4 years, but I don't have any ideas (I am already married, so the aforementioned Leap Day activity doesn't work for me). 
Have a great day whatever you do today...

Monday, February 27, 2012

The Art of Procrastination.....

Saturday I didn't have to BE anywhere, and had no deadlines looming, so what did I do with my valuable free time? Cruised the interwebs, of course.

So sorry I missed out on these for Valentine's Day:

Time to play with color. I created this palette at Kuler from a photo that I took last summer. It is really easy and fun (i.e. addictive...)

Perhaps dream about the places you'd like to visit someday.... Here is a site I can get lost in....

Cute animal photos, anyone? Try this.

OK I'm done. Time to get some work done.

P.S. The March newsletter will come out on Thursday- look for the sneak peek here on Wednesday. If you would like to sign up, there is a form at top right bar of this blog. It's gonna be a good one!

Friday, February 24, 2012

In the Studio Today & Weekend Plans

Today it is dark and rainy and windy- perfect for hunkering down in the studio, drinking tea, and sewing....
I am working on my "labor of love" project (click here to see that fabrics I am using)-  I put it aside for a while to work on some other projects, but now it's out again. I would love to get it done for June.... but it has a lot of hand embroidery, so I just don't know....

Speaking of big events in June, I have been putting off getting my dress for my daughter's wedding. I think I am in huge denial that this is really happening! Plus, most of the "mother of the bride" dresses I've seen are so matronly- I don't want to look like the Queen of England, you know?? I mean, don't get me wrong, I love the Queen, I just don't want to look like her! Regular evening-ware seems to be much too revealing for me.... I finally found a website with dresses that I really liked, so I called the shop yesterday to make an appointment and was told that it is taking 16 weeks for dresses to come in- and I was out of luck! Oh my, did I panic....
I called another shop, the same shop where we are getting the bridesmaids dresses, and the very kind lady there told me not to worry, we can put a rush on it, and I can probably have my dress by April... AND they carry the same dress designer that I liked! PHEW!!!! I have an appointment later today, and hopefully I'll find something I like and order it and that will be one more thing off the list and then I can worry about other things....

Daughter is coming home from college for the appointment, and then we are going to dinner, and then going to finish up her registry. She registered for a lot of things back in the summer- and now they are mostly unavailable so we have to go back and pick some current items.

So is anyone watching the Oscars on Sunday night? The media makes such a big deal out of it. I will watch the highlights on Good Morning America on Monday morning.

What will I be watching instead of the Oscars on Sunday night?? Why, I will be watching The Walking Dead on AMC, of course! My absolute FAVORITE show right now!!!! I am so hooked! Creepy and scary and full of drama and human emotion..... Yes, it's about the Zombie Apocalypse, but more than that, it is the story of the survivors and human nature and how do people react at the end of the world. And does, or should,  the Moral Compass change during the Apocalypse??????

Will Rick and Shane battle it out over Lori? Will the group ever recover from the loss of Sophia (that scene was unbelievable....) Will Maggie stay on the farm, and will Glenn stay with her?? What the heck is wrong with Beth- is she just in shock, or does she have "the fever"???  And will we ever find out what Dr. Jensen said to Rick in the final moments before the huge explosion at the CDC?????????

These are things I NEED TO KNOW....  (Are there any other fans out there? I would love to have a discussion group about this.....)

(And now that Downton Abbey has finished for the season, I don't have to choose between my 2 favorite programs on Sunday night.


Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Buttons, Buttons, Buttons

Welcome to my new sponsor! Blumenthal Lansing is now supplying me with tons of buttons to make my wool  flower pins. I met Helen at a trade show 3 or 4 weeks ago, and she kindly agreed to supply me with buttons to make the pins that I sell for charity.

She has been so generous! Look at this wonderful package that I got in the mail a couple of days ago, crammed with buttons, buttons and more buttons:

Up until now, I have been supplying all of the materials for the pins myself, so it has been really nice to connect with a great company like Blumenthal Lansing. Their buttons are gorgeous, and they have so many different kinds- you are sure to find exactly what you need for beautiful projects.

For those of you who don't know about my pins.... I make them all by hand, I even hand dye some of the wool myself. The profits from the pins go to buy sheep for poor families around the world so that they can start businesses and become self sufficient. If you would like to know more, click here or here.

To buy a pin, please click here. Remember Mother's Day is coming up- what a lovely gift!
So far, we have donated 71 sheep- that's 71 families' lives transformed! Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!

Friday, February 17, 2012

17 Wonderful Years

My youngest Daughter turned 17 last week.... I know I always say how time flies and I can't believe how old my kids are... but I really can't.... Sometimes I wish I could go back and have them little again and really appreciate it... and tell my "younger" self how soon they would be all grown up...

We went to dinner, then we went to church for music rehearsal like we always do. I asked a friend to pick up a cake for us to all have after rehearsal was over, and knowing we are fans of Cake Wrecks, he got this....

It says:  Happy Birthday
Underneat That
W Love You!

My friend asked for the funny wording on purpose- but did not know that the woman decorating the cake would unintentionally do such a sloppy, terrible job with the writing, AND leave the "e" out of "We"! It was perfect! We all had a good laugh.

Daughter is very interested in Art History, so Saturday we went to the Philadelphia Museum of Art to see the Van Gogh exhibit

The exhibit was really good, extremely interesting. While I have never considered myself a big fan of Van Gogh's work, I left the exhibit so inspired to paint with lots of brilliant colors in my next painting....  They had prints and books in the gift shop, but honestly, they are no substitute for seeing the originals- the luminosity and vibrancy cannot be captured in a photograph. If you can go, I highly recommend it. After seeing the beautiful original paintings, I can now say that I am a fan of Van Gogh.

Tomorrow I will be at the Quilt Block, 95 Welsh Pool Rd., Exton PA from 11-2. Stop by and say hi, sample some tasty treats from my Fruitful Hands book, enter to win door prizes, and have fun!

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

A Romantic Idea

 Daughter and her fiance were many miles apart on Valentine's Day, and she had a really cute, romantic idea. I could not show the idea before Valentine's Day, because I didn't want to ruin the surprise for her fiance. But you could use this idea for a birthday or any other special occasion.

Daughter found a simple recipe that both she and her fiance could make on Valentine's Day. She typed up the recipe and made it into a pretty booklet using scrapbook paper, ribbon, etc. She mailed it to her fiance with directions not to open it until the morning of Valentine's Day.

She also arranged for the delivery of the required groceries to him on Valentine's Day. Then they cooked and ate dinner "together" via Skype on Valentine's Day.

Isn't that cute??

Monday, February 13, 2012

Visit Me at the Color Cafe!

My friend and fellow Henry Glass Fabrics designer Brenda Pinnick hosts a great blog called the Color Cafe. Brenda is an artist and color is her specialty. The Color Cafe is a great place to visit for inspiration and to see what the latest trends in color are.

Last week, I was featured at The Color Cafe, and I introduced my newest fabric line, called Fruitful Hands. The colors are yummy and fresh and perfect for Spring and Summer. The line was inspired by the artwork from my book, also called Fruitful Hands. When my design director at Henry Glass saw a copy of the book, she said, "We have to do a line!" and so we did. Some of the art for the fabric is taken from the book, and I also created some new art for it. It could be my favorite fabric line to so far....

Stop by Brenda's blog for more fabulous Color Inspiration!

Friday, February 10, 2012

In the Studio This Week....

This week I mailed my artwork for my next fabric collection for Henry Glass Fabrics. It is for kids and it is really cute, and really special..... It will benefit a special charity which I will tell you about a little later. A sneak peek at the art:
 It was nice having Milo around this week for some extra inspiration:

I also made a few more wool flower pins, which are on the website now:

If you would like to know how my wool flower pins help families all around the world, or to order one (or 2 or 3....) click here.

Finally, this week I am getting ready to do a book signing and presentation at The Quilt Block in Exton, Pennsylvania on February 18. There will be fabric and pattern giveaways, and of course, snacks (quilters do food very well!)
I was there last week to drop off samples, and then we ended up doing a quick, impromptu "photo session!" I was dressed all in gray because I had just come from a memorial service..... So Cynthia and Jan fixed me up with a pretty pink pin on my lapel to brighten me up!

What are you doing this weekend? We will be doing some fun stuff to celebrate Daughter's 17th birthday. There will probably be photos next week.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Milo's Visit

My brother and his family are in Florida this week, so we get to have Milo here for a visit. He is a good little boy, a very excellent furry nephew!
He keeps me company in the studio, and we go for walks and visit the horses in the pasture behind our property. He has energy to burn- it is not very often that you find him resting....

It has been nice having him around. We haven't had a dog in the house for a year and a half, since we lost our Daisy. I still have not gotten over that. At this point, I don't know if I'll have another dog... Daisy just occupies a very special place in my heart, and even now sometimes I am gripped by grief and can't believe that she is gone.....

But for now, we are enjoying Milo. He settled in quickly, and I think he thinks this is his new permanent home! But I am sure that he will be happy to get back to his family and his kids in a couple of days... I hope they bring him a nice souvenir... maybe a little tiny Disney World T-shirt???

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Color Personality Quiz

They say that how you respond to color says a lot about your personality. I took this quiz, and I don't think it was very accurate.... Some of my results (and these are my actual results, copied and pasted here. I couldn't make this up if I tried):

Your Existing Situation
"Outgoing but unpredictable and unstable. Likes things to go her way, otherwise she becomes agitated, indecisive, and fake in her activities."

Your Actual Problem
"Feeling tension and stress brought on by situations which are out of her control, leaves her feeling helpless, anxious, and in adequate. In order to build her self-esteem back up, she looks to others for recognition, respect, and encouragement. This can be a problem since she tends to blame others for her shortcomings. Searching for solutions that are geared toward her needs and self-consciousness."
Your Actual Problem #2
"Feeling held back and restricted from moving forward, looking for a solution that will give her more freedom and less obstacles."

Wow! they figured out how psychotic I am based on a 15 second quiz?? Impressive! Fire all of the psychiatrists- this little quiz is really all we need to point out all of our problems and move us toward better mental health! Ha ha. (I don't think that I'm that unbalanced, but maybe I should ask my husband and kids if they think it's accurate.)

If you want to take the quiz, click here. Let me know how much medication you need. Maybe we can get a group rate.

I tried another quiz, click here to find it. For this website, they require you to give an email. Frankly, I made one up. I don't need more garbage in my inbox- I just want to take the fun little quiz, for crying out loud.... Anyhoo, here are my results (just a little more accurate than the first quiz I took- but not completely. The second part sounds a little like me, but not the first.)
Your Results: Blue Violet
Blue colors your world with emotion. You seldom jump right in, preferring to stand back and watch people and situations closely. Blue people are calm, but can also spiral into sadness. With so much emotion, tears of happiness, sadness, anger, or frustration are quite common.

 I decided to try one more test- this was the most accurate. Some of my results:

You are strong-willed and active, your actions are determined by your own will, by the goals you settled for yourself, and by your need to act and to move forward.

You are also a leader, you know how to organize the groups of persons and give them your energy.

Finally you are able to listen to others, you show a good emotional intelligence, you know how to bring your support to others.

To take this test, click here.

3 tests, 3 completely different results (maybe I have a split personality disorder? Where is the test for that?)

Friday, February 3, 2012

Sweet Stuff for Valentine's Day

Oh sweet, pretty things- how I love you. I found these gorgeous photos on the Better Homes and Gardens website. I have included the links to the recipes.
You're welcome. :)



Which one(s) will you try????
 (You've given up on your New Year's Resolution by now anyway, haven't you????)


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