Monday, December 20

A word that doesn't always describe this time of the year with all of the holiday hustle and bustle around gift buying, or in the snows that seem to visit us every other day.
But in the case of the snow, it is always so peaceful and nice to look outside the window at the fresh white snow that so beautifully paints the trees, buildings and landscape.
And as much as being "stuck" at home may stink at the time, it's been great. The stockings are hung. Our trees are up, lit, and decorated. There are lots of baked goodies to munch on setting on the counter. And fun holiday decorations spread their cheer throughout the house. I guess Mother Nature decided it was time to bring that part of the holidays back to the way they use to be.
Little Miss "Holly" is Darci's newest and most versatile pattern.
These cute little angels can be arranged around a fun holiday center piece, sewn down around a base as a candle mat, used as a cute tree ornament or as a garland. She doesn't take many supplies and also is quick to stitch up.

We've also found some time to work on what will be our upcoming block of the month quilt.

This quilt is out of a book that features quilt blocks that are painted on barns throughout parts of the country. This quilt is great for people who have gone through a beginning quilting program and are looking to advance their quilting horizons and challenge themselves.

The UPS man delivered us a packaged filled with bright cheery fabrics one cold wintry day. During one of our stuck at home snowstorms this little "Twist & Churn" table runner was done. It is out of the new Minnick and Simpson of Moda fabrics called Charlevoix.
I have to say that this was a fabulous pattern for a charm pack. I hate using charm pack patterns that have you waste more of the 5-inch square than you sew, and that only use a small percentage of the pack, leaving me with a bunch of odd squares for who knows what. This pattern really utilized the squares and the whole charm pack. Yea!! We do have a few kits cut, they are $24.99 and include everything (even backing) the only thing you need to supply is the batting.

We also took some time to finish up a U.F.O before it got to be past the season.
This tree skirt is a pattern in the G.E Designs "Fast & Furious: Holiday" book that we have had so much fun using this fall and winter.

And, also done is this quilt out of the "You Asked for It" book by Gathering Friends that used the beautiful colors in the Evening Mist (new colors) by Sentimental Studios of Moda. Perfect for curling up on the couch with!!


With Christmas just a few days away we want to leave you with this:
Christmas is forever, not just one day. For loving, sharing, and giving are not to put away like bells and lights and tinsel in some box upon a shelf. They good you do for others is the good you do yourself. ~Norman Wesley Brooks

Friday, December 3

5-yard Frenzy

We've been busy on this snowy day getting things in order for our Anniversary Sale that takes place next Friday (Dec. 10) and Saturday (Dec. 11)
As seen in our previous post we are having 5-yard quilt kits for $30.00.
(The quilts shown finish approx. 52 x 68. . .colored photo in post below)
Also during the Anniversary sale we'll be featuring a new item in the shop:
Several Settings (Four sided place mats) "a new dimension in place mats"

This neat little tool and pattern create four different place mats in one. Choose fabrics to feature each of the four seasons or specific holidays and simply "flip" thru the place mat to your desired fabrics.

Demos will be given throughout the sale days.
Several Settings pattern & template will sell for $10.00 if you purchase fabrics to create place mats. (We'll also sell them for $13.50 regular price if you do not wish to get fabrics)

Also. . .just a reminder that if you are planning to donate a pillowcase to our ConKerr Cancer pillowcase cause please make sure you get them into us by next Friday or Saturday. For each pillowcase you bring into the shop you'll receive a ticket to be eligible for a $25.00 gift certificate. Pillowcases will be donated to either Amplatz Children's Hospital in Minneapolis or St. Mary's Hospital in Rochester.

Wednesday, December 1

We hope that you all had a very safe and wonderful Thanksgiving.
For the first time in MANY years we were snowed in at our house. Yes, we are equipped with a heated tractor that blows out the snow and 4-wheel drive vehicles and we were snow bound in our yard. Snow drifts that are six feet tall in the middle of a long mogeled driveway were Mother Nature's way of telling us to stay home and make progress there. . .and progress we made :)

But before we get to some of the progress (or holiday eats) that got made yesterday let's travel back a week or so ago. . .
After we recouped from Thanksgiving (eating too much) and Black Friday (standing in long lines) we decided to spend a relaxing night at a concert. Grandma, and us gals loaded up her car on Saturday and headed to Marshall to listen to the O'Neill Brothers play piano on the first night of their holiday tour.

One of the greatest segments was their "Ode to Brett Favre" in which the two piano playing brothers dressed up in old/new jersey's and sang their tribute song. These two men can play outstanding. It is sooo very soothing and wonderful to listen to. If you like listening to Lori Line or have seen her all three of us would strongly recommend that you check these guys out. We thought their performance was just as good if not better than those of hers we've seen.
Of course not only was the concert great (as expected) but the company was as well. For it is things like that that cannot be bought on Black Friday. It's not every day that you:
eat at Applebees and have one person get the wrong food, only to have the manager, food deliverer and waiter all over to apologize letting the whole restaurant know something was up . . .to leave to get into the parking lot only to find out that the "short cut" you (and the cars in front of you and behind you) think you are taking is just a round-a-bout that will bring you right back to where you came from. Aww yes-memories like that are priceless.
Oh-and if anyone knows where we can find a Vuvuzela (you know those annoying horns used at the world cup) let us know!!!!
Now, only if Santa could bring Darci & Lacey fingers that could magically play all those wonderful songs that we heard that night so wonderful and effortlessly as those wonderful brothers could play.

On Thanksgiving we decided to finish up a "U.F.O"

Last Christmas, Phyllis and us gals decided to make hearts out of old jewelry. The idea came from a tree out of jewelry in Great-grandma's nursing home hallway. After gathering up our prized pieces we began clipping, reshaping, hunting, and gluing treasures on our hearts.

Our hearts (or Lacey's) looked sort of like the one above. Of course the other gals were a bit more "over-achiever-ish" than her and have hardly any black background showing.

We all had such a wonderful time reminiscing over pieces we glued on our hearts and cannot wait to get them put onto a velvet background to hang and enjoy in our homes.

Now. . .

we of course have been busy little elves getting ready for the holiday season in the shop.

This little guy would make a wonderful gift for that special someone on your list this year. His hat is out of a rag-spun and his fancy scarf is filled with various frilly yarns. It's not only a quick little hanger but works great to use up those smaller scraps that seem to accumulate with any project.

This is our 5-yard Quilt that will be a featured sale item next week for our Anniversary sale.

This quilt really takes longer to cut out than it does to sew it all together. It's a very quick very fun quilt to assemble and gives such a fun pattern when it's finished.

We also did up a quilt out of the "Winter on Walden's Pond" fabrics to show how wonderful the quilt pattern is to use larger scaled or scene prints on. It's also amazing how different the quilt can look out of different fabrics.
Our Anniversary sale will feature these quilt kits for $30.00

Another project that was a "bucket list" item of Lacey's was a Drunkard Path quilt.

This particular quilt block is typically done curved piecing method, but not the one you see above. Lacey used the "fuse" method which totally eliminated having to put in curved seams. It was a very quick method to use and is something she'd like to do again.
In between eating, shopping and concerts we've been working on things that would make up quick for gift giving. The pattern used above features place mats (shown above) cloth napkins (shown above) and trivets. They are quick to sew up and really don't take much fabric to do up a set or two for that someone on your list. (Check later on during the week for our newest gizmo to arrive that lets you make 4 place mats in one!!)

Keeping up with the "kitchen" themed gifts we also did up a Pot-Pincher.

Also is this glasses (or rotary cutter or remote control) holder. This cool holder stands up perfect on a table to hold those treasures we are always in need of and sews up quick.

If you are looking for something quick and fun out of wool we'd suggest these candle cuffs by Bareroots. They tie around any size candle and come with an accompanying candle mat to set your spruced up candle on.

Now. . .to some of the "eats progress" made during the snow!
if you like pretzles, peanut butter, caramel and chocolate this is for you!!
Peanut Butter Pretzel Bites (Take 5 bar)

1 pkg. (14 oz.) Caramels
1/4 c. butter, cubed
2 Tblsp. water
5 c. miniature pretzels
1 jar (18 oz.) creamy peanut butter
26 oz. milk chocolate candy coating (I used chocolate almond bark)
Spread approx. 1 tsp. peanut butter on one side of each pretzel and set on a cookie sheet covered with wax paper. Next, melt caramels with the butter and water in a microwave safe bowl and stir until smooth. Top each peanut butter covered pretzel with approx. 1/2 tsp caramel. Let caramel set on the pretzels before adding chocolate (refrigeration works well). In microwavable bowl, crock pot, or double boiler, melt the chocolate candy coating. Using a small fork dip each pretzel in the coating until completely covered. Shake off excess and place back on wax paper. Let stand until completely set. Store in an air tight container in a cooler place.
Yields: 8 1/2 dozen.
May you enjoy these little goodies as much as we do in our household!