Monday, November 24, 2008

Hello Mr. Fox

When I mentioned about the foxes last week I decided I needed a picture too. So when Rusty alerted me mid-morning to their presence I grabbed my camera and took a few photos from our upstairs bedroom window. On this visit I caught the bolder of the two. They're easy to distinguish as one has far more white on his (her?) bib and belly and while you see this fellow has gentle black tipping, the other is strongly marked in black, his legs nearly solid. "Blackie" is far more cautious. I'm not a good judge of distance but it is quite a long way from our house to the fringe of the woods yet it is undeniable that Blackie can see me watching from the window. He doesn't like it much. Later on this same day when he visited I tried to grab my camera but any movement whatsoever on my part will send him scampering. I watched for him to return at which time he stared me down for a few moments but when I raised the camera, he grabbed a cabbage leaf from the scrap pile and dashed off to the safety of wooded cover. That must have satisfied him at least for a while; he certainly wasn't coming back any time soon if I was going to harass him! Another day (maybe Friday?) I watched the two interacting at the scrap pile. I couldn't tell if they were actually challenging each other over the food - it didn't seem like a serious conflict but maybe more of a jostling for position, order-of-the-pack kind of issue.

This is the bolder of the two, I guess we need a name for him too.

I have no doubt he is looking directly at me, although this guy feels less threatened by my presence than his friend does.

Have I mentioned that we spent our summer watching a mama deer raise her twin babies?

Now, on to the indoor business at hand. I didn't get a whole lot done last week, I was only able to sew some on Monday & Tuesday. With the long awaited arrival of deer season, my guys headed to "deer camp". Sounds like I'd have less to do, doesn't it? But I cooked almost non-stop Wed-Thurs-Friday. I can't blame it all on them though, I had friends in on Friday evening, then on Saturday morning headed off to my sister's for a weekend long Thanksgiving gathering. Believe me, we ate well all around. And I feel like I've packed on a couple of extra holiday pounds. Already. Tomorrow I'll start cooking for my husband's family on Thanksgiving day. Over-eating is a holiday tradition for me.

So I do have one little project to show you - here's a tote for Izzy the dog, the same Izzy of last week's Christmas stocking. Yes she is a pampered pooch, isn't she? I totally understand!

The front . . .

The back. . .

And the inside too.

Now it is serious crunch time at my house. I have a December 1 deadline to turn in supply lists for five spring classes at Jackman's. I have to list each and every thing that might possibly be needed to complete the project, along with narratives - supply recommendations, what to do to prepare for class, etc. I've discovered the only way to develop these lists effectively is to make notes while you do the samples. SO . . . I have a lot of sewing and a lot of paperwork to do. And none of it completed. This is not a good feeling. And I have Thanksgiving dinner breathing down my neck, how did that happen so soon!? Someone who knows me well told me once that I wouldn't be happy if I didn't have too much to do. Well said.

I can't sign off without mentioning that I helped Ashley (my future DIL) work on kitchen curtains. Ashley has good taste, picked out some really nice fabrics and had great ideas. She made covered piping and inserted it below the header. It looks gorgeous and professional. She is doing some seriously amazing things for a beginning sewer; some day soon she will be leaving me in the dust! (You know, maybe I could get a picture of those curtains.) Ashley also took a pretty good cut on the finger from the rotary cutter that morning but we won't talk about that . . .

I'm thankful for:

~ our service men and women (including my cousins Chris & Liz) who put themselves in harm's way to protect our freedom and way of life

~ being married to the most amazing man

~ the giggles we share daily with our kids, family and best friends

God Bless you all - Happy Thanksgiving!

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

It's beginning to feel a lot like Christmas

. . . in our little neck of the woods. Yesterday as I dreamed up a Christmas doggy stocking in my warm and cozy sewing studio (doesn't that sound hotzy-totzy!), Randy had to dodge snowflakes as he cleaned up leaves in the yard! Not that he minds. He likes snow. He likes Christmas. Sometimes I call him "Rudy-Lou-Who". You have to be a fan of the Grinch to get that humor.

Even I who fret and worry over the holidays can't help but catch a little whimsical Christmas spirit with fun projects like last week's bibs and this week's doggy stocking for Isaac & Avery's pup.

Now you know, sweet Rusty is going to want one like this too . . .

And a close-up 'cause you've gotta check out the ribbon.

(Darn, I don't have any more of that.)

Then, the diaper bag I promised from last week . . .

And finally a shirt for my husband. This was inspired by my friend Tammy's youngest, Tyler, who wanted something Fire Dept. related to honor the memory of his uncle Todd. Tyler has a lot of qualities passed on from his mom and Todd. He has a creative mind and oh-my, can he build things with wood! At 16 he has created some amazing outdoor furniture pieces like hexagon picnic tables and Adirondack chairs. He even sold a few this past summer. He got his business drive from his dad! Now I'm rambling (my husband says I do that) . . . here's the shirt.

My husband is pleased and that makes me happy too. A somber loving happy.

Today I'm thankful for:
~ a warm home and well stocked cupboard
~ sweet puppy kisses
~ the beautiful fox couple who visits our yard daily reminding me to live life simply, in faith that our needs will be met

What are you thankful for today?

Friday, November 14, 2008

Yes, I'm still here!

As of late I've been slacking in my blogging -- but not so in the sewing room. I've been busy busy, trying to make my way through a long list of projects. I am making progress but not enough in my judgment to be where I need to be as the holidays quickly approach. (EEK!) I also find myself with fewer pictures I can post for now, since so many of the projects I'm creating are gifts. But there are a couple of things I can show you . . .
Last time I posted bibs I mentioned how much I like to do them. They do take quite a lot of time (virtually all day for these 3) but I think they are just so darn cute! Oh, how I wish I'd had this machine and the time to do these things when our kids were small (deep sigh).

Fronts and Backs (they're reversible). Look closely to see the sparkle snowflakes!

These are fun because I love doing free motion quilting and using the bias binder. One of these days in the not too distant future, I'm going to start a quilt or two. I have a stack of Amy Butler Midwest Modern and a Moda Posh jelly roll waiting for that day.

Here are more Vandal bags . . .

and some velveteen drawstrings for Our Sorrowful Mother's Ministry.

In the wings -- I have a cute diaper bag completed for a shower this weekend, so I'll be able to post it soon. Also a couple other completed bags that are Christmas gifts. Oh won't we be picture saturated after Christmas?!

And finally, I was inspired by a post last month by Amy at Park City Girl as she began giving thought to what she is thankful for. Those thoughts have rambled around in my head as I tried to come up with a perfect list and finally decided a comprehensive list is too much pressure. So instead I'm just going to mention two or three random things with each post this month. Here are today's thoughts:

~ God's Grace that gives me strength for all things
~ His gift of life and good health to enjoy it
~ Our many blessings of comfort and security

Those are my profound thanks, next time I'll do more light-hearted. Have a great day and enjoy the blessings in your life!