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Monday, December 26, 2011

What to do with Christmas card pics

We love getting Christmas cards with photos from friends (especially when they include pics of the parents, and not just the kids...) and every year, we joyfully post them all up in our home. But what to do with them afterwards? Some may make the fridge, but these days, that's valuable real estate for kid art...
I saw this idea on pinterest (totally not taking credit for it)... Collect each year's stack and punch holes in them, bind them with book rings and make yourself an easy coffee table book to bring out with the decorations next year. What's better than a book of your favorite people's smiling faces (and their kids, too)???
For ours, I've managed to dig up a few from years past and put our family card on the front for the year it represents. This makes me so happy because I just love holiday cards and how else can I keep and enjoy them???

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Libby Dibby collision

I wore my Christmas Libby Dibby skirt to church last Sunday. It's a wacky one, with hideously bright vintage Christmas velvet (I love it).
Then I sat down and a friend walked in with her Day Journey skirt on and sat right next to me. I thought this image was really fun.. And yes, I do draw incessantly during church...

Morning drawing time

I have a 5yo boy who needs a lot of one on one attention. Especially after losing 3 little brothers in 2 years... This last one loss has really wounded him. Around here, we have stepped up efforts at loving each other well and here's one thing I realized is gonna pour into my boy and also feed my soul.
The last three mornings, a little boy comes to me at 5:59 am and says, "mommy, is the coffee maker ready for me to turn on and can you come draw?" (today it took a while longer for me to get up...) and together we have spent at least an hour in quiet talk as we draw. (Mimi gets a similar crafting time at night...) you can see, today we had to make tugboats, per order of the CEO. But I'm also finding ways for it to be reflective, adding in song lyrics or creative writing to the drawings, as I am prone to do. (if this type of meditative drawing is of interest to you, I'd recommend looking into the Zendoodle books, they're really fun, I got some for the kids recently)

Monday, December 19, 2011

Our annual Christmas pic

many of you knew to wait for our annual Christmas pic... Yes, the Worths are still silly. Yes, we still know how to have fun.
Peace, Love and Joy, from us to you in this holiday season.

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Peaceful Christmas evening

There are so many happy things about this photo... Presents wrapped, fire off to the right, tree skirt almost finished, hubby's show "Person of Interest" on the tv...

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Christmas tree skirt

I've wanted to make a Christmas tree skirt for years and never found a pattern that I liked until now... My friend and bee partner, Jennifer, recently made a pattern for one that was a spiderweb pattern (see it here - http://www.flickr.com/photos/sunnyincal/6482475375/in/photostream)
Oh!!! Yeah, I want to make that!!!
So here's the top, made in one productive evening... Now just gotta finish it. Then I have to squeeze it in under all the presents under the tree where no one can see it, but I'll know it's there...

Thursday, December 8, 2011

A good gift = love

A good friend knows that sometimes its not having the right words to say, but being thoughtful that counts. As for our recent situation, there aren't any great words of comfort to ease the pain. But some of my sweet friends have known that there are indeed things that help... Like cookies dropped on my doorstep by a new neighbor/acquaintance, a pack of sharpies that came in the mail with some slinky's for the kids. ...A text or voicemail that required no response other than to hear the love in the message. Spontaneous invitations to breakfast. Loving comments on the blog. Two different friends sent songs to encourage us. Some friends took us away for the weekend after Thanksgiving... Today this sweet and adorably wrapped tiny present came with a friend's Christmas card. In it was this sweet embroidered "L" necklace.
The giver has no way of knowing that though I was the only "L" grandchild to my grandmother Lillian, I never received any of her promised initial jewelry when she passed - and that makes this even sweeter.
I have been loved on by so many of you friends. Thank you for knowing that Sharpies do actually help ease grief and that healing comes in many forms - including necklaces and cookies.
You all know who you are and I'm so grateful for you.
(ps- the embroidered necklace had a tag that says "merriweathercouncil.com - in case you're interested, and the other necklace can be found at shopsanctuary.org - an amazing non-profit organization started by another friend)

Christmas at our house

Someday in the future, there may be a day when I don't live at this house. This is what I will remember about Christmas, when I look back. My (Bachelder tile, for those who care) fireplace is the part of my home that makes me happiest besides my front door. Old homes are amazing and somehow lend extra nostalgia to holidays, don't you think?

Monday, December 5, 2011

G's quilt

Made for the very special baby boy who I held in my arms from 3 weeks old-16 months old. The entire process of being a foster mom was so distressing that my heart was too broken to start and finish this while he was here. I had to work on this in spurts over the past two weeks to get it finished without too many tears.
I will mail this out today and hope it reaches him safely.
"Baby, we had hoped to hold you forever and we miss you every minute."

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Christmas spirit

Having not done anything Christmassy yet this year, the kids were begging to get started. (I'm glad they're here to keep the ball rolling)... After pulling out the first four boxes I remembered this week that I love Christmas.
A friend came over yesterday for a crafting lesson and we made some adorable quilty keychains that I thought would make adorable Christmas ornaments. After the first 10... I still have ideas for a zillion more... How happy are these?
Here's the tutorial that I used:
http://www.craftinessisnotoptional.com/2011/06/scrap-your-stash-guest-post-living-with.html

Friday, December 2, 2011

Perspective from Lovell

Whenever I get down or feel like life is tough, I remember my friend Lovell. Lovell was one of 7 boys, raised by a single mom (i'm guessing sometime in the 50s). He's now an older, unemployed man living somewhere in my neighborhood. He makes his living by making people happy. Lovell dances every single day, all day long in all weather, collecting tips for sharing his one talent. He writes funny signs to make people laugh and he spreads cheer and love to everyone who stops to talk to him as they enter the local onramp. Lovell shouts to our car each time as we drive by, "I love you guys! Drink lots of water!" My kids love him.
He's sworn multiple times to me that if ever anyone disrespects me that he will go and "take care of them".
Lovell doesn't have all his teeth, but he's got one of the most beautiful smiles I have ever seen. It lights up my day every time I see him.
And I think about perspective a lot when I see him. Lovell is also affected by the economy. I don't know if Lovell has a house. But Lovell always has a smile and something funny to say. And Lovell is absolutely amazing and beautiful in the best ways.
Here's Lovell's joke for you today.

Thursday, December 1, 2011

These busy hands needed a ring

It's had been about 5 days since I made anything. (WHAT?!?!?!?) I saw this wire sitting on the counter and made this sweet nest ring... Found a stray weird bead and had something to wear today.

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Be Kind

I saw this post on Pinterest last night.



it reminded me of the "Be Kind" cards I made up a few years ago. Remember these?



For some reason, I never listed them on etsy. Now you can get them, if you want. They're cheap enough to keep a pack in the car and have them on hand for a kindness emergency. Which we all have.

Monday, November 28, 2011

I'm still here

I'm not really sure what to say. I'm still here. But baby is not.
As a family, we've gone from 6 members to 4 in less than a month.
We are crushed and limping, doing our best to love each other well in the midst of tremendous grief. Fear. Anger. Despair.
We are discouraged and broken. But we are tighter than ever. We are together. We are battered on levels I will never be able to share on this blog, but we are clinging to each other.
We will survive because of love.

Here are some special pics from a particularly poignant Thanksgiving weekend.

Monday, November 21, 2011

WIP - hand paper pieced quilt

I've been working on this English paper pieced quilt top for about a year. Tonight it is done.
Ive been working on it periodically throughout the day as I take breaks from packing up all of baby's stuff. He moved away permanently Sunday to a new home. We will never have him again. This was not what we were hoping for. Our foster parenting days are over.
Grief is a funny thing to bear. I'm not sure why sewing helps, but it does.
I'm going to be having lots more time to sew in the future. We've gone from 4 kids to 2 in one month. Life is much quieter now.

Friday, November 18, 2011

Glass charms

Oh I am having so much fun with these
glass charms. Mimi made the first 20, but when those sold like hot cakes, I had to step in and crank out a bunch. Then the gears started turning, and not only did I want a sewing machine charm, I wanted ones with public domain vintage sewing machine ads. Then I thought, "well, how about things I have sewn? Or tiny versions of my artwork?"
A whole new medium to work in. Yippee!
Today I wore a charm with an image of the grey improvisational quilt I finished recently. The charm looks more like modern abstract art than a photo of a quilt... But I know what it is and that makes it all the sweeter.
I'll let you know when these get posted.
They're so fun to make. I can't stop.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Mountain collage

It's 3'x2' and the biggest collage I've made. And now its done. I'm pretty excited.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Collage Work in Progress - isaiah's mountain

This is the biggest collage I've ever worked on. It's 24"x36" and while my materials haven't changed (still just using mail order catalogs and magazines)... Well, besides blowing through glue sticks, it means that I'm having to change the way I construct, because each section has to be built individually. It's a good challenge for me and I am currently walking around the house with this huge canvas and setting it in different spots in the house to look at it from different angles, trying to pick out problem spots.
My kids had plenty of "problem spots" they could find... They think it needs a sun and some birds...as for me, it's a little more subtle to figure it all out. Might have to be done for the day and come back tomorrow.

Friday, November 11, 2011

mimi raises money for World Vision

Well, we did it!
We got Mimi's section of my etsy shop up and running and she's already made a sale as she tries to raise money for World Vision.
You have to click here and read the adorable description that she made for the pendants and don't mind me as I shamelessly plug her attempts to raise $$$ for other kids around the world. I love it when my kids get ideas like this and I'm so proud of her.
We will be posting about 12 more necklaces today and I know you'll be able to find something for someone in your life! (and YES, I will make special a special post about the sewing themed ones, because you can't miss those... Those were made by momma's special request)


Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Modern Baby quilt top

I wanted to see if I could make a baby quilt from unusual colors and patterns.
This has been 1/2 made for about 3 months. Last night it HAD to be worked on (not sure why).
Top is completed now.
Not sure who the recipient is. I've been asked a number of times if I would consider selling my quilts. This one, maybe... We shall see.

Mimi wants to raise money for hungry kids

Stay tuned as Mimi is going to start selling necklaces that she makes this week. This week, the World Vision catalog arrived with lots of cool options to buy animals for hungry families around the world. Mimi immediately decided she wanted to earn $100 to buy some ducks and chicks for needy families. We recently bought supplies to make glass pendants and Mimi used clippings from her own magazine to make this necklace from one of the Rainbow Magic fairy images. She will be making 10-12 more charms this week and we will post them in my etsy store. They will be $10 each and all money will go to this cause. (hooray!)
... Be thinking about the little and big girls in your life who might want such a cool treasure.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

more doorstops


I don't know what it is, but I have been getting so many orders on etsy for my beanbag doorstops lately. It's really funny and I am sure that people are looking at me strange when I go to Smart & Final and buy 60 lbs of beans at once. And the funny thing is that they are going strange places, like overseas, or to APO addresses or hotels. What are people doing when they buy 20 doorstops???? Who knows? Whatever it is, it's funding my latest quilty adventures and that's something fun. Thanks everyone!

Here are some of the more popular patterns of late.


Monday, November 7, 2011

Habitat Quilt - completed

The LAMQG meeting is tonight and I had to finish the Habitat Challenge quilt by the meeting, so when I attempted binding it last night on the couch and fell asleep, well, the quilt had to take a road trip with me this morning, to get worked on during errands. As I waited for Baby to visit with his mom at DCFS, I sat in the car and finished the last of the binding... Phew it's done!
Have to say: I LOVED HAND QUILTING THIS. What a great experience that was. Of course it added about 30 hours to the project, but the end result feels so much better than anything I could have done with my machine.
I also learned that a lot of the adventures of hand sewing rely on the needles you choose. Not that I've found the perfect ones yet, but I am starting to form opinions. (me, opinions?) ha.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Hand quilting WIP "habitat quilt"

I almost gave up on this quilt. Given all the stress I have been under, I couldn't see a way to save this Habitat Challenge quilt that I am working on for the LAMQG challenge. But some Pearl cotton, encouragement from Nicole and lots of quiet moments on tired evenings have helped me to fall in love with this.
The Little Princess left last Friday. I've shed many tears and also realized 4 days into a week without her just how much I'd neglected while we had her. Basically, everything was put on the back burner and this week so far has consisted of cleaning, sending apology emails to Libby Dibby customers who've waited too long for answers to questions or fulfilling orders. (sigh) - Thank you beanbag doorstop customers, I shipped out 20 today!

After that shipment today, I begin to see the light. A few hours to myself in the morning, our construction worker isn't here this am to work on the house - might be my first hour alone in the house in 5-6 months and darned if I'm not gonna sit down at least for 10 minutes to listen to some Imogen Heap Pandora and do a little hand sewing - just to feed my own starving soul.
It's the same feeling as a glass of wine and a sunset. And I'm gonna soak it in.

Monday, October 31, 2011

More little house collages

1 of 2 little house collages that I whipped up for some birthday gifts for special friends this week. After the last one became a hot ticket item at an auction recently, I figured that maybe these were cool enough to gift after all. (it kind of built up my confidence a little to see it get a great price at the auction...)
This one is about 8"x8". The other one was tiny (so cute) and about 4" square.
They make me happy. I kind of think I need one for myself.

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