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Tuesday, September 24, 2013

It's been 2 months today.

Two months ago I lost my 30 year old son to an accident. You can imagine losing a child but until you experience the pain you have no idea. Take what you imagine and multiply it by 500.
My husband lost his only son, I lost my baby boy and his sister lost her best friend and brother.
  My son was a brilliant (almost genius) young man who was loved by many, many friends and family. Each and every one of us were totally shocked when he died.
  We were totally overwhelmed by the outpouring of support when this tragedy struck and are so thankful for the network of friends and family that loved him almost as much as we do. My kids grew up outside a small town and everyone knew everybody. Friends and neighbors came to us time and time again with tears in their eyes because our kids grew up together and he was like a member of their family also. All of the guys he grew up with were at his memorial service and crying.
  We miss him tremendously every day and I still cry almost every day. Nothing in particular brings the tears but they still come. I know God has his hands full with my son in Heaven and I'm sure my boy is pulling hilarious pranks and getting others to go along with him.
  Talking to friends and family is the best way to honor him. Everyone has a hilarious story of, "remember when..." and we still laugh. This eases the pain for a moment but it is still there.
Some people say there is a hole in their heart when a loved one passes but not mine. I love my son and always will the same even though I don't get to talk or see him. I will still remember his voice and I can picture the way he walks and how much I enjoyed watching him play video games when he came over. I will never forget how he hugged me everytime he came home or when he left to go back to his house. I will never forget how he would say, "I love you too, Mom" when we talked on the phone. He is still with me in my heart and will never be truly "gone".
  I am sure that whatever Heaven might be he is having the time of his life on his adventures.
  Baby Boy, you are with me always!

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

OOPS! I forgot I had a blog!

I completely forgot I had a blog!

Wow, I guess I am REALLY burned out on quilting.  Enough burned out that I decided to close my physical shop in Pleasant Hill and retire. Let me tell you, RETIREMENT is wonderful!
Don't get me wrong, the money was nice but I have had time to put in a garden, reorganize my pantry, get my laundry done and play with my dog.

I still sell a few things I make on Etsy but I haven't really worked hard at getting things done to sell. I did not realize how burned out on sewing anything I was until I quit doing it completely.

I closed my shop on December 13, 2012 and brought anything left home to put in my basement. So everything is on shelves and in totes and totally disorganized. I have no place to work since it is disorganized and I really haven't wanted to work on any sewing project. I never thought that would happen but it did. Yes, it is still totally disorganized but I am at least looking at the possibility and moving stuff around so I can think about getting back to sewing. I'm not sure when that will happen but I get the hankering to sew something cute every once in a while.

Eventually I will get back to this blog and sewing and will keep you posted on my new projects. But first things first. Gotta get organized, gotta get the 7 years of accumulated clutter cleaned out of this house, and I must get my mental state back in order. Until then, keep sewing but don't overdo it!

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

New Orleans Vacation

My husband and I just got back from a little vacation in New Orleans. It was a vacation for me but he had to attend a conference. I loved just wandering around while he was busy attending classes and listening to speakers. New Orleans is a beautiful city with so many restaurants that I think we could eat out breakfast, lunch and dinner every day for a year and not be able to go to every restaurant.
We stayed on the river front about 4 blocks from the French Quarter. I took the trolley since my knees cannot be trusted. It is so easy to get around with the trolley and bus system.
We had breakfast at Cafe du Monde one morning. If you like funnel cakes then this is the place to eat. I thought they tasted like funnel cakes. They were good and you could tell who ate there when you were walking around later because everyone leaves with powdered sugar on their clothes.
We saw the sights and we saw the architecture. I love all the iron works around the French Quarter. Even the artwork in our hotel room was a picture of the iron work in the fences and railings. I loved the balconies and how they decorated them. We looked down dark alleys and found a few surprises, little patios that were decorated so cute.
 Isn't this beautiful? All the fencing is done with this decorative ironwork.
 This was a balcony railing on an older building. Amazing!

I was taking a pic of the old door and he was peeking down an alley. Sure hope no one was peeking back at him, lol.

We had a wonderful time. We drove across Lake Ponchatrain (I probably didn't spell that correctly) and saw a little pet floating in the water.

gator or croc
We  ate at some great restaurants. The group went to House of Blues and it actually turned out to be great fun.
I was glad I got to experience New Orleans but at the end of the week I just wanted to be home and near my pasture. I was longing for wide open spaces and few people. I was ready for home. Oh, and my mashed potatoes. I really, really wanted my mashed potatoes...

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

My Favorite of the 4

I got a ton of responses from my previous post and most of you agree with me. Number 4 is my favorite and not just because it has a black background. As one person put it, the OCD in her made her like #4 the best. I agree and I don't think I'm have OCD (well, maybe just a touch).
The black area around each block in #4 give your eyes a place to rest and really makes the blocks stand out.
Each quilt has it's good points. #2 is my second favorite because it has a lot of negative space also. I like #1 for it's use of fabric but it's really too busy for my taste. As one comment pointed out, the polka dots were her eye's resting place. I didn't even notice the polka dots until she mentioned them and now I understand her point.
We all see something different in each and every quilt and our brains register the negative (resting place) for our eyes. We comprehend and notice the little details in a quilt when it isn't so "busy" and "in our face".
My quilts are like I want my life to be. LESS CLUTTER. I hope I have made you think when you design your next quilt. When quilts have many, many different fabric designs please make sure some are smaller designs and read as solids from a distance. This can make your quilt a winner or make your quilt an epic fail.
I'm not saying all my quilts turn out perfect. In my head they look great but when they are done I am not happy with some. I find the ones that don't turn out the way I want are the ones I don't ever finish or dread working on. This may be why we have so many UFOs in our lives.
Happy Quilting,

Monday, October 15, 2012

Rest Your Eyes

Today's post is all about designing your quilt. Many people have problems putting colors together but that's not the main problem. I have seen so many quilts from people coming into my shop, at quilt shows and on the internet that are just plain UGLY. And do I know why I think they are ugly? Because there is usually no place for my eyes to rest.
Many people think it is acceptable to put 10 different prints together as long as they have a color that matches on each one. NOT TRUE, PEOPLE! Big mistake!
It's the graphic artist in me that says this. When I worked as a typesetter (about a million years ago) I learned the key to good layout was having negative space in the document for the eyes to rest. Negative space does not mean the color black. It is a place where the eyes do NOT have to read or focus on something. This is a very effective advertising tool. When the business card, advertising flyer or garage sale sign is filled to the brim with copy it is ineffective in getting the client's point across.Unfortunately I had many clients that wanted the History of the World in 12 point type on a business card. TOO MUCH for the brain to DIGEST!!!
Quilt design works the same way. I'm going to show you 4 pictures of a tumbling block quilt that I found on the internet. Comment below on your favorite 2 and tell me why. Go with your first impression. Don't study the quilts. Each has it's wonderful points by itself. Just tell me which two you prefer and why.
Tumbling block 1

Tumbling block 2

Tumbling block 3

Tumbling block 4

When I have read all your comments I will tell you my favorites and why.

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Quality vs. Cheap

I have to write this because I cannot believe the attitude of people lately. I understand the economy is bad, I understand you only have so much money to spend but really?
I participate in the Show Me Safari Shop Hop every year and this year we decided to do a Christmas themed quilt. Each shop had a kit to make their blocks for a price. I chose to do my blocks with a solid red, a solid green and the background fabric we all agreed upon.
Women coming through my shop declined my kit because, "I can get plain red and green at Walmart/JoAnn's and not have to pay her price." Yes people, I can hear you!!! The shop is small and I have the hearing of GOD!
Yes, you can buy solid red and green at Walmart or Joann's but it is not the same QUALITY!
I am appalled by this thinking. You will put the same amount of work into a quilt whether you use quality fabrics or the cheaper fabrics you get at the other two places, but your project will NOT last as long with the cheaper quality fabrics. Why do women shortchange their talents for money?
As long as I'm on the subject of quality I have to write about this "race" to get as many quilts as possible done in a lifetime. Why do you want to turn out inferior quilts because you were racing through it to get done so you can start on a new one? I have many, many quilts I would like to put together and try new techniques before I die, but I will not compromise my quality and rush through one just to get it done. I don't understand why women are shortchanging their talents in this area too. I would rather finish one quilt a year and produce an heirloom that I know will last decades through washings and being used and loved. I hear all to often, "well, it's just a kid's quilt and he's going to drag it around and through the mud and I don't want to spend the money on nice fabric." If you did spend money on the nice fabrics the "kid's" mom can probably set it back to give to her first grandchild.
I'm tired of the attitude these "quilters" have. I don't consider them "Quilters". These are a different breed I like to call "pseudo quilters". They do not understand quality. It isn't in their nature to use quality fabrics and do a quality job. A quilt is a quilt and that's all they care about. They can say they made a quilt. I would rather they didn't EVEN come into my shop because I just cry a little inside when I hear them talk. I'm actually sorry for them because their work will not live on, their families will not have a wonderful quilt made with love to remember them by. Their families will have a quilt that is falling apart and the fabric is rotting to give to the dog to lay on in the garage.

Monday, August 20, 2012

2012 Show Me Safari Shop Hop

Show Me Safari Shop Hop
Jingle Bell Run
August 23, 24, 25 & 27

Are You Ready for a Run???
Each shop will feature a “row” kit for your Christmas Quilt. Purchase a finish kit for your favorite quilt at a participating shop

Shop Hop Days & Hours:
August 23, 24, 25, 27
Thursday 9-8, Friday 9-6, Saturday 9-5, Monday 9-7

Complete your passport and be eligible to win:
A $50 Gift Certificate from each shop!
Quilter’s Harvest – 660-584-3399
Higginsville, MO

Liberty Homestead  - 816-597-9402
Kingsville, MO

Cornerstone Fabric – 816-873-0005
Smithville, MO

The Wooden Spool – 816-630-5063
Excelsior Springs, MO

And Sew Bee It – 816-903-2739
Kearney, MO

Crossroads Quilting – 816-649-0550
Cameron, MO

Quilt Stop – 816-987-2541
Pleasant Hill, MO

Creative Hands Quilt Shop &
Decorative Painting Store
 816-331-1992 Belton, MO