Friday, December 30, 2011

2011 in Review

Looking back over this past year, I am amazed at all that has transpired.  I have only had this blog since June and am writing my 99th post, have over 200 followers and am humbled by it.  I originally started this post with the intent on keeping the extended family up to date on our adventures and it has branched out from that.  Part of my resolution for the new year is to bring a bit more balance back to the blog and incorporate more of life, aside from quilting, into my posts.
Well, seeing as how I only started this blog six months ago, I didn't document everything I made, but will give it a go.

These cover a wide range of projects, from swaps to personal gifts to etsy orders.  I also participated in a variety of block swaps and QALs (unfortunately, my kaliedescope one is the only one I finished...).  This year I am involved in two bees, Moody Blues and Sew.Bee.Create, and am very excited for them to start.  I plan on limiting myself with swaps this year and will try and focus more on completing my huge WIPs pile and expanding my shop's inventory.  I also am pulling back a bit in order to focus more on finishing my kid's school year off strong.  

Hope everyone has a safe and happy New Year!  

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Blogger's Choice Bundle Contest!

Over at Quokka Quilts, she is running a wonderful contest sponsored by the Fat Quarter Shop where bloggers create a bundle of their choosing.  This bundle uses 12 prints and 3 solids.  I chose this particular combination to celebrate the upcoming birth of my friend's first child.

1. Sunny Happy Skies by Bella Blvd for Riley Blake Designs
2. Pimatex Basics by Robert Kaufman Fabrics
3. Pimatex Basics by Robert Kaufman Fabrics
4. Heart Garden by Robin Zingone for Robert Kaufman Fabrics 
5. Meadow Friends by Deb Strain for Moda Fabrics
6. Sunny Happy Skies by Bella Blvd for Riley Blake Designs
7. Sorbet by Michael Miller Fabrics
8. Fox Trails by Doohikey Designs for Riley Blake Designs 
9. Jungle Buddies by Viv Eisner for Wilmington Prints
10. Baby Safari by Carina Gardner for Northcott Fabrics
11.  Me and My Sister Favorites by Me and My Sister for Moda Fabrics
12. Knock Knock by Dana Brooks of Lazy Daisy Cottage for Henry Glass Fabrics
13. Bella Solids by Moda Fabrics: fushia
14. Bella Solids by Moda Fabrics: snow
15. Bella Solids by Moda Fabrics: prairie green

It was so hard to pick just 12 prints and then only 3 solids.  It was even harder to not just go ahead and purchase this.  Oh, did I mention the winner of the contest will receive 1/2 yard of each of the 15 prints?  Isn't that just amazing!  I do not envy the judges who have to pick the winner!  Best of luck to all who enter! The deadline to do so is the 15th of January.

Monday, December 19, 2011

New Year's Resolution

My friend Anna, over at Molding Minds Homeschooling, beat me to the punch and posted her resolutions already.  So, I plan on linking over with her.

My resolutions are simple in appearance, but a tad bit more difficult in their follow through.

1: Finish the Bible in 90 days Challenge starting in Jan.

2: Stick with my weight loss goal and exercise routine

3: Stay on track with homeschooling

4: Balance my quilting and swap commitments, don't try to do too much.

5: Work on my WIPs pile

6: Finish the 31 Days to Clean Challenge starting in January.

7: Balance my blog posts to include both homeschooling and quilt stuff.

The biggest challenge I see is the follow through of the challenges and making them an everyday, lifelong, habit that will draw me close to God, bring peace and stability to my family, and be a blessing to others.

I probably have more to add, but I think this is a reasonable start.

I am writing this on my tablet since our computer contracted a virus, and will go on later to do all the necessary linky stuff.

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Sunday, December 18, 2011

And we have a winner! (Really!)

(Sorry about the previous false posting.  I received a new tablet for Christmas and accidentally posted from it when trying to write on it.  I am writing this post on my computer until I'm a bit more literate with the tablet....)

First of all, I'd like to thank each and every one of you who have left a comment!  I wish that I had the time to respond individually to each of you, but with over 600 comments, 6 children and being smack dab in the middle of the busiest weekend EVER (Two Cantata performances, birthday party, and a wedding all in three days) I just knew that was impossible.  I did, however, read each and every one of them!  I was completely amazed at the response that I received, over 600 comments!  I am very humbled that there were that many people stopping by to my little ol' blog!  Thank you!  Oh, okay.  Enough of my rambling.  :)  The winner is......

Congrats!  I wish that I was able to pick more winners, but alas my stash does not run deep!  Keep on the lookout though, I have surpassed 200 followers.  I am at just over 215 with google friend reader and networked blogs, so I may just run another giveaway if I go over 250.  I have emailed AJ, if I don't hear from her by the 21st, I'll draw another winner.  Thanks again everyone for participating in the annual blog hop party  with Quilting Gallery!

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

WIP Wednesday

Now, I realize that Lee is taking a linky party break, but I felt that I needed to post in order to gather up my thoughts! First things first though, I wish to thank everyone who's commented on my giveaway (you still have a couple of days left to enter if you haven't)!  I've had 524 comments to date!  I wish I were able to respond to all of them, but with Christmas around the corner, my daughter's birthday Friday, two Cantata performances for half of the family, a wedding, etsy orders, homeschool, and just plain life in general, I am a wee bit busy!
So, onto my WIP progress.
I had a few finishes, yay!  I finished off the last of my NuBee blocks:

I also finished my Cups and Saucers Swap gift:

I did add some fabric inside, forgot to photograph those.  Oops.
Finished some scarves:

Both of which are on sale at my etsy shop.
Part of an order, a circular playmat with drawstring:

So, though I still have oodles to do, I did get some things finished!
Finishes: 6
Need to finish: 7
Ongoing: too many!  ha!
No progress: again, too many!

Well, I hope that you all have a wonderfully productive week!  I'm praying I do!  If you don't hear from me again before Christmas, well it's because of the above busy-ness and succumbing to it!

Monday, December 12, 2011

Manic Monday

Well, it has been a while since I have done Manic Monday!  I figured today would be a good day to catch up with us heading into the 12 days of Christmas.  AHH!  So much to do...
Anyways, this was my previous list:
1. Exercise routine, fell off of the wagon last week trying to get those pouches made!
2. School lessons, the kids don't mind I've fallen behind. :) Really need to get some plans made for while they're out of town.
3. Christmas Sampler Quiltalong, my computer and printer are now talking to each other. Yay!
4. Housecleaning, can't leave for vacation with a disaster of a house.
5. Catch up on laundry and get the kids packed for a 10 day stay at Grandma and Grandpa's.
6. Charms Pack Quiltalong
7. Bee blocks!
8. Whatever else I'm forgetting, I know I am!

Okay, I was really bad!  The week with the kids away and all my grand ideas of planning and catching up fell flat!  I instead, spent three days in a drug-induced sleep.  I.Hate.Vicodin!  It made my so dizzy and sleepy.  But I am no longer in pain!  I have so much more energy now that my teeth are no longer bothering me.  I had someone on facebook ask her friends which they'd prefer: labor or tooth pain.  I prefer labor hands down!

Alright, now to my new list!
1. Two Esty orders: they are custom orders, must get cracking!
2. Cleaning my house.  A never-ending endeavor with six kids...
3. Christmas presents: I have a set of pillows to make, the rest I am buying.
4. A purse to make
5. Lesson plans
6. Exercise.  I haven't done any since the surgery.  Feel like I've been playing catch-up
7. Finish cowl I'm crocheting.
I haven't made any progress in either the 12 Days to Christmas Sampler or Charms Sampler.  Hopefully after the holidays I'll be able to pick them back up.

With Christmas coming, what do have planned for your Manic Monday?

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Quilter's Blog Hop Party! + Giveaway!

Logo: Quilting Gallery

The year, I am participating in the Quilting Gallery's Annual Blog Hop Party.  My giveaway will run from today, December 3rd, 2011 through December 17th, 2011.  I will use Mr. Random to pick a winner and announce it here on the 18th.  

Now, for the giveaway!  How would you like to win a fat quarter bundle of Kate Spain's Terrain?  I have 8 fat quarters that I'll give to one lucky winner.  

Now, in order to qualify for a chance to win, you must comment on this post.  If you are a no-reply blogger, you must leave an email address or I'll pick another winner.

Additional (optional) entries.  Remember to leave a separate comment for each as Mr. Random won't read "I did all" as multiple posts.  
That is a total of 5 chances to win.  Best of luck to all of you!

I'm linking this giveaway over at Hip Homeschool Mom's Giveaway Day

Pay it forward!

Pay It Foward

I have decided that I will do this wonderful bit of fun. Who doesn't love a surprise parcel? I know I do.

Unless it's a bill or something like that. So here is what I am promising... I will send a surprise gift to the first three people to comment on this post. This gift will be made by me and I will send it sometime within the next year. Exactly when you will receive it will be a surprise (it will probably be a surprise to me too :-D).

Of course there are some rules in this game. Here it goes:

Rules:1. I will make a little something for the first 3 people that comment on this post. It will be a surprise and may arrive at any time in the next 365 days (yes, a year).

2. To sign up to receive a gift from me you must play along too. Share the giving love on your blog by promising to send a handmade goodie to the first three people that comment on your blog post.

3. You must have a blog.

4. After commenting on my post, you have to post this (or similar) on your blog to spread the love. If you haven't posted in 48 hours then the next commentor will be chosen.

I don't know if three people will even get around to commenting on this, but I will say that if you find this post 6 months from now and only 2 people have left a comment, you can still be commenter #3 and get a random goodie from me! When you comment, I'll email you and get your address and then you will get something from me sometime before next December.

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Fresh sewing day

Fresh Sewing Day

After trying to compose my mural for this past month, I've realized that I've accomplished a bit.  More than I've realized, because I didn't take pictures of them all!  I'm linking up over at Lily's Quilts today. I still have a mountain to accomplish and the time is quickly disappearing!  I better get a move on!

 Have a great day everyone!  

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

WIP Wednesday

I wish that I could say I accomplished a lot this week, but it was Thanksgiving!  I spent the weekend with my in-laws, mom, aunt & uncle, sister and her fiance, and all my kiddos!  (My husband was only able to stay for Thanksgiving and had to leave late that night to travel back home to work on Black Friday and Super Saturday.  Poor guy, I think he slept a total of eight hours from Wednesday to Sunday).   I baked eight pies for the occasion: pumpkin, blueberry, pecan, cherry, 2 chocolate pudding, and 2 apple (one was gluten & sugar free).  On Saturday, we celebrated Christmas with my Mom, sister and her fiance.  The kids all loved getting presents early.  My sister and her fiance were up from Virginia and since Sean is deploying in December, they won't be able to drive up for Christmas.  My sister and her fiance got me a new quilt book that I can't wait to use, an Elm Creek Quilts novel, a Thirty One tote and the most delicious dark cocoa from Starbucks!

Okay, onto the quilting side of things.  I did finish up an etsy order.  It was three custom pouches:

  Now, onto the other two etsy orders.  I have all the fabric for the 4 custom pouches cut and three of them have their hexies basted.  I have the material for the custom circular mat and the two purses as well, now to cut them and sew them up!  I also have a Christmas gift that I must get done and done soon!  I have the pattern and fabric for that as well.  I am currently behind in two flickr swaps, ack!  I hope to catch up on those as well this week.  I never knew I'd become so busy.  Keep me in your prayers as I continue to prioritize my life and all it entails.

Finishes:  3 pouches
Ongoing: NuBee Blocks, Cups and Saucers Swap, Etsy orders, 12 Days to Christmas Sampler QAL
Need to start:  Christmas gift, charmed QAL, and any other things I'm forgetting!
No progress:  the many partial quilts sitting in my storage bin awaiting progress!

Linking up with Lee over at Freshly Pieced.

Monday, November 28, 2011

Social Media, Behave! Day #1

My Expectations of Social Media

1.  It is a way for me to document my families daily doings.  How we're growing, struggling, persevering through life while looking to Christ for wisdom and guidance.

2.  An outlet for my quilting, a place to keep track of my projects, interact with others in the field in order to grow friendships, glean new skills, and improve my overall abilities in the sewing arena.

3. To encourage others out there that there are many ways in which we can minister, it's a place to keep one humble.  

4.  To interact with others who are homeschooling for encouragement and tips on how to better help my own family and to pass on what I've learned along the way.

With this list I've realized that I'm someone who likes affirmation.  I check into my 'stats' way more than is necessary.  I also tend to use it as a way of escape when it seems like life is getting difficult and I want to unplug.  I am allowing it to draw me away from more important things.  Thank you Laura, for bringing perspective!

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

WIP Wednesday

Well, it's has been a bit since I've written a WIP Wednesday.  Last week I was in a drug induced daze from having had major oral surgery the day before.  I am happy to report that I am feeling human again!

I worked on my NuBees blocks this week, three out of the five are done:
I have also been working on Etsy orders.  I have 7 pouches, 2 purses, and a circular mat to finish.  I will post pictures as I actually finish them; I am really close!  I have my sewing bag all packed to take with me to my in-laws in order to do so!

I did finish one order, which was a scarf.  I love the color!

Finishes: 1
Ongoing: 10+ Boy does that make me tired to think about!
New: 0
Need to start: 1

Linking up with Freshly Pieced.

With Thanksgiving being tomorrow I will be limited in my online presence.  My in-laws live in an area where my cell phone doesn't work, so I'll try and check in when possible.  Have a wonderful Thanksgiving everyone!  I can't wait to celebrate with my family!  

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Social Media, Behave!

Sarah Mae's friend, Laura…
…author of the blogs 10 Million Miles and The Homeschool Babyand the eBook, Blogger Behave, is taking over Sarah Mae's blog for the week beginning on Monday! Why you ask? In her own words…
“God is calling us to use our online presence for His glory. He’s got big ideas for your every tweet, status, pin, and blog post… ideas that will bring real and meaningful light to this limitless online space.  Take a look around and you’ll see His ideas at work. He’s shaping our hearts to want what He wants. We are feeling compelled to write well, tell useful stories, speak out for the oppressed, promote ethical companies, steward our God-given abilities, and make the most of our time online and offline. This is a huge undertaking, and it’s not easy territory. We’re smart enough to know that by dipping our toe into the vortex of social media, we risk being pulled into its dizzying demands. But, don’t worry, He won’t leave us to fend for ourselves. He’s the one planting the desires in our hearts, He’ll equip us with the know-how. This week, I want to share a handful of ways in which I’ve come to enjoy making social media behave, so that I can hear God’s voice and happily obey Him. But I want to hear your ideas, too. I’ve asked Sarah Mae to borrow her space so that we can join together and begin a lasting conversation about how we can use social media wisely. I’ll need ten minutes of your time every day this week in the hopes of freeing you up for moreAre you in?”
If so, click on the icon above and sign up on their page!  Also, I'd love to see who of you following me are also joining in, so if you would please link up with me as well!

See you all on Monday!

Thursday, November 17, 2011

My mini-vacation!

This past week I've been busy! I went out of town with my Mom, Aunt, and oldest daughter Mariah for the weekend. We went down to Virginia Beach to be with my sister, Stefanie, as she tried to find the perfect dress for her wedding next fall. We arrived Thursday night and she took us out to dinner at a lovely italian restaurant. The food was delicious!

This was what I ordered.  Pasta with artichoke hearts, spinach and mushrooms sauteed in a garlic butter sauce!

Mariah ordered this dish, manicotti shells stuffed with crab, shrimp and lobster.  She loved it.

Friday was our dress hunting day.  We went to two stores.  We found the dress at the second store, sorry no pictures, but then you understand.  Can't be putting the dress out there for all to see!

We stayed in Friday night just enjoying each other's company and eating pizza.  Saturday we went out for brunch at Doc Taylor's, a lovely place that served breakfast and lunch all day.  We also went to the beach so Mariah could put her feet in the ocean.

I had my sneakers on and was walking behind her taking pictures, and wouldn't ya know it but I walked right into the water!
We then went to the Aquarium and had a blast!  We were eaten by a shark!
 Here is Mariah!
Here is my Aunt.  Notice, I didn't take any with me...

We ended the night playing Rock Band at  my sister's.  Now, I could be cruel and post the video of Sean, my sister's fiance singing, but I won't.  :)
Sunday morning saw us heading back to upstate New York.  One consolation is that my sister and her fiance will be traveling up for Thanksgiving.  Then, I won't see my soon-to-be brother-in-law for at least 8 months due to the fact that he goes on deployment the day after Christmas.  :(
Well, that was a wonderful trip for us.  We all wish it could have been longer, but we had to return to the real world, which included major oral surgery for me.  I am currently recovering, hating how the medicine makes me dizzy and loopy.  I'm hoping to have some finishes in the quilting realm next week.  Have a great week everyone!

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

WIP Wednesday

Today is Lee's 1 year anniversary of WIP Wednesday posts over at Freshly Pieced.  Wahoo!  I've only been following for about two months, but my blog is still fairly new.

So, here are my stats for the week.  I am currently working on two orders for my shop, so cool!  I don't have pics of one of the orders yet as I'm waiting for fabric to arrive.  But here is a shot of the scarf I'm in process of completing:
 I also finished up a bunch of pouches for a business venture:
I also finished up my first ever purse for a friend having a bridal shower:

It was so well received that her mother wants one in purple.  So, after the holiday I'll be on the hunt for some purple fabric.
I also started cutting out my Nubee blocks:

I'll be using Angie's, from Cut to Pieces, Binary Block out of the newly published book listing 11 of her designs!
I also received a lovely package from the P{l}P Swap this week as well:
The pouch is already filled with my notions:
Finished:  7
Ongoing: Too many to count!
New: 2 orders for the shop
I'm sure there are others, but I'm unable to process the lack of progress!
Well, I must go try and reclaim my house before we leave for a mini vacation.  I'm helping my sister look for a wedding dress down in VA this weekend.  Then, I'll be having major oral surgery on Tuesday so I may be MIA for a bit.
I'm linking up over at Lee's WIP Wednesday!

Monday, November 7, 2011

Manic Monday #3


This is my list from last week:
1. Getting the next set of school lessons written out
2. Continue my exercise routine
3. Finish Stocking for Stockings for Christmas Drive
4. Finish pouches for a business opportunity
5. Catch up my Christmas Sampler Quiltalong, my computer and printer weren't talking to each other.
6. Lonestar quilt
7. Table runner
8. Get my housecleaning back in check, it's run away from me!

Okay, so not much done off of the list-Yikes!  So for this week:

1. Exercise routine, fell off of the wagon last week trying to get those pouches made!
2. School lessons, the kids don't mind I've fallen behind.  :)  Really need to get some plans made for while they're out of town.
3. Christmas Sampler Quiltalong, my computer and printer are now talking to each other.  Yay!
4. Housecleaning, can't leave for vacation with a disaster of a house.  
5. Catch up on laundry and get the kids packed for a 10 day stay at Grandma and Grandpa's.
6. Charms Pack Quiltalong
7. Bee blocks!
8. Whatever else I'm forgetting, I know I am!  

So, what are you all doing this week?  

Oh, and I did have a finish this past weekend, I made a purse (my first one), for a friend of mine for her bridal shower.  She loved it!  Her mother wants me to make one for her in purple.  

{Sew} Modern Monday at Canoe Ridge CreationsI will be linking this finished purse over at Canoe Ridge Creations Sew Modern Monday:


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