Wednesday, November 04, 2015

Creative in Bloom...

~ Greetings my dear friends and stitching buddies ~
a warm welcome to you! 
I hope this fine day brings you much blessings and joy!

Speaking of Joy....
My dear friend, Christine Wilson, lives right across the street from me in our little hamlet and she is a fantastic artist. She has the style and vision that I envy. She has a beautiful Etsy shop where you can find many wonderful, economical, personalized presents. 

These beautiful poplar wood plaques are currently in her Etsy shop and I've seen them up and close and personal and they are just gorgeous! All hand-painted, all hand-lettered (even to your specifications!). The poplar tree was cut down and hand lathed by an Amish farmer in the heart of Southern Indiana Amish Country that we live very nearby.

These sweeties can be viewed: HERE

Christy also has custom invitations, stationary, Christmas cards...
you name it, she's got it in her shop! 
Go take a look!
You can view Christy's Etsy Boutique ~ Creative in Bloom ~ by clicking: HERE
I thank you and Christy thanks you. Go take a look at her gorgeous things. You won't be disappointed!

I know I've been lacking in the posts department lately...
I have just gotten finished stitching and finishing 5 models for two of my favorite designers ;)
I've been finishing A LOT for my customers...oh my goodness...I've been busy!
but my stitching for me time has returned! 
I've already started two VERY HUGE samplers that I can't wait to share with you!
These will be my "focus" projects in the coming year.
Also, I've been receiving e-mails and texts about the 25 Days of Christmas with The Twisted Stitcher...and the answer is: YES! I'll be pulling out all the stops again for this Christmas Season. 

This 25 days...
 I'm focusing on ornaments that I've stitched through this year but I'm going to add something special. I get lots of e-mails about how I stitch, what products I use, etc. So I think perhaps each day (or maybe every other day) I'll be giving some tips on what brings me joy in my stitching. Maybe even a video blog or two. We will see what I have in store when the 25 days get here.

I'll have one more post before the 25 Days start...
that will get my faithful readers up to date on what has been going on with us here at the 'ol Pfeiffer Ranch.

Until then my friends...
 I'll be keeping my hands to work, my heart to God,
while treating my neighbors with kindness and respect 
and trying to be the best me I can be. 
It's hard, isn't it? 
And I stumble and I fall, but I pick myself up and remember:
To thine own self be true.
Loving my neighbor as myself 
I want to BE the change I want to SEE in this world. 
Join me!

Love in stitches, 
Vonna xxxx

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Catching up on a couple of good weeks...

~ Greetings my friends and stitching buddies ~
warm welcome to you!

What happened?!....
I was so proud of myself and on a roll with weekly blogging and...
it happened again. I went and got busy.
Actually, my colleague at work decided to move, sell his house and some other stuff that he needed off work for (at the last minute...)
and guess who gets to work those hours?
I'm not complaining (OK, well sorta), but its a job and I'm thankful to have one. A little notice of working for days on end would be nice. When my colleague is gone, that means I work his hours and mine too. So that's a whole lot of hours/days to cover....but its extra $$$ and with a kid going to college next year, what is not to like about extra $$$.
So I'm sucking it up, buttercup!

Fall decorating went and happened...
~ Welcome to our home ~
Fall Outside

Inside Fall Collage

I love fall ~ the rich reds, golds and oranges....just yummy!
The smell of wood smoke and crisp falling leaves crunching under your feet. Its dry here in my part of Indiana and the trees are already dropping their during my morning walks leaves are scuttling around every where. 

Speaking of my morning walks....
I try to walk 3 miles at least 5 days per week. I have foot issues (or I do when I am not very, very careful about my footwear)...I get plantar fasciitis very easily. I have really bad heel spurs too from the plantar fasciitis. But because I started wearing exclusively Birkenstocks and Alegria shoes...I have healed my own feet. My podiatrist is amazed that I don't have to go see him for my 4x a year cortisone shots anymore :) I'm happy about that myself as they were not very much fun at. all.

I started wearing Birkenstocks...
16 months ago (to the day almost).
My first pair of Birkenstocks were these Mayari's. I roughly calculate that I have about 700 miles logged in the ones on the throw rug. They are nasty...the soles are worn horribly and the bottoms are about worn to the cork in places along the heal and across the toes. But they are so molded to my feet that I can stand in them for hours and my feet never hurt. But I slipped when it was raining a couple of weeks ago and so that made it dangerous to wear them. I had to break down and buy a new pair. But I can't bear to throw my old ones out.

Here is today after my walk...
my new Birks have about 45 miles on the. I walk roughly 15 miles a week...I've been wearing these 3 weeks. I love them. But they aren't as broken in as my old pair. But they will get there :)


When I walk...
I track my mileage on Runtastic, wear my sunglasses (because I'm vain and I have zero make-up on), have my house key on a rope and I pray my rosary. In 50 minutes of walking I can pray 3 full rosaries. That's what I call a power walk! I pray for all my friends and their intentions that they lay on the Lord's heart. Whisper your intentions to Him and know that I am praying for you, every morning from 8 until 9 a.m.

Walking kit

Thank you...
for all your well wishes for Katie. Her XC season has been a little heart breaking. She's not had a collapse like the first meet, but she's just not ran like she was hoping too. Come to find out, she has low iron and folate. A common problem with distance runners. So I put her on a regiment of vitamins, minerals and a mega dose of iron and she's rebounding. Sadly her last meet for her career is next week. Its been a great, life-changing experience for Katie to be a distance runner. Now she will just run for fun and health. She plans on participating in many 5K in her future just for fun. 

Here she is pictured the day she got her college acceptance letter. She is going to attend IUPUI (Indiana University ~ Purdue University of Indianapolis). The best of both Indiana schools combined into one in the heart of the city. She will be studying Electrical Engineering (following her Daddy's footsteps). The best thing is: She was awarded an academic scholarship (already!) of  $24,000 ($6K per year for 4 years) based on her academic work and SAT/ACT scores.

WAHOO! Katie!!!

Katie's a Jag

Katie also holds...
a part-time job, where she's worked for the last 2 years. She came home Sunday night to tell us that she has been promoted to Manager!!! 
Could a parent be any more proud? Nope, I don't think so...

Manager Katie

My Dad and Stepmom...
is on a 8 week cruise. Here is a breath-taking photo they sent me from Flam, Norway. 

Flam, Norway

I've been busy...
enhancing my stash...

Limited Edition Kit "Gobble Gobble!"
from With Thy Needle and Thread by Brenda Gervais
(it had me at "LIMITED EDITION")


Gobble Gobble WTNT

The ladies at Fancy Works...
my Local Needlework Shop, are always grinning like Cheshire Cats by the time I leave...
Brenda Gervais does the best witches...who can NOT like them?!?!
 I'm not even a big fan of Halloween, but I adore those witches! 
and I finished "Hallow Day Inn" last year, and these compliment it ~ 
justify your purchases people!

The odd man out is the Lizzie Kate 2014 Santa 
(*hint* you'll see the reason why he's in the lot later on...)


And being on-line, is particularly hazardous to one's pocketbook when you turn on your Facebook news feed and see this:

"Heaven and Nature Sing" by Kathy Barrick
yep, my finger got all itchy and clicky this morning. Its on its way!
(this had me at: well hello (did you see that) DEER!)

And Heaven and Nature Sing

I can't buy all that stuff without actually having something finished!

So I went and finished:
"Quaker Stocking"
by Carriage House Samplings
stitched on 40 ct. Purely Primitive linen 
1 over 2 
using my own colorway of reds/gold
in Classic Colorworks Cottons. I used:
Manor Red

Didn't it turn out lovely?

CHS Stocking Finished

CHS Quaker

of my stockings on my mantle!  
(my next stocking to stitch will be: Pennsylvania German Stocking. I have the 40 ct. Tin Roof WDW linen all ready to go! But likely not to be started until 2016
One day, I hope I have a whole mantle FULL of the CHS stockings. I have all the patterns. 
(of course...)
Both CHS Stockings

If you read my previous saw I had purchased this in my last stash enhancement.
I didn't care for the linen in the kit (as it was a Limited Edition kit). Sort of loosey goosey mesh type linen...Don't care for the way my stitches look. But I have lots of thread left and it was a quick stitch so I think I'll stitch it again and have two ornaments. 

Heart in Hand Woodland Peace

That's all I have to share about my family and stitching...
but in my other "hobby", I have to share these sweet Chihuahua cookies that Rico asked me to make for our stitching pal, EDGAR!
I've been friends with then for a long time and when Rico wanted a surprise for Edgar, I told him to send me the cookie cutters and I'd take care of the rest. 

So I made 28 big and little pups and sent them on an airplane to San Francisco :)
They turned out pretty good, although I was worried they weren't up to snuff. But they do look awful cute!

I have been finishing for my clientele....A LOT!
and here is a few sampling shots of what has been running across my desk lately.
(to see my whole year of finishes you are always welcome to click on the tab above and then inside the tab click on the 2015 link. This has been a very productive finishing year for my clients!)

JG_CCN Home Sweet Home JG_LHN Needle Bed JG_PS Stitching Santa LO_LHN Season of Love LO_LHN Merry Christmas
LO_LHN Gingerbread Man

(*answer* of why L*K 2014 Santa was purchased)

KB_LK Santa

LO_CCN Angels LO_CCN Paris LO_TIAG Bell Pull JS_Colonial Gatherings Club Pieces JS_LK Flora McSampler Stockings 2

Alrighty Folks...
That does it for me today!

Until next time...
I'll be keeping my hands to work,
my heart to God, 
while treating my neighbors with kindness and respect, 
and trying to be the best me I can be.
I stumble and I fall, but I pick myself and remember:
To thine own self be true. 
Loving my neighbor as myself. 
I want to BE the change I want to SEE.

Love in stitches,
Vonna xxxx

Thursday, August 27, 2015

Running down August...

~Greetings dear friends and stitching buddies ~
I'm really trying to keep this at least once a week blogging up :)
I don't really feel as I have anything good to share, but you never know...I might have something appealing to someone. At least it appears that many of you like to read my weekly drivel :)
And if you do not..then click away, my friend, to a new internet address. No need to stop and read any further. 

When we last visited...
I had shown you my current work in progress.

"Quaker Stocking"
by Carriage House Samplings
I am stitching it on 40 ct. Purely Primitive
using my own colors that I picked and substituted in reds/gold
I am using Classic Colorworks overdyed cottons:
Manor Red
Wild Berries

Here is what it looked like on our last visit:
August 18, 2015
Quaker Stocking 2nd Progress

I worked on it a little bit over the weekend and on Sunday evening it stood at this point:
August 23, 2015
Quaker Stocking 8_23_15

 I've been putting a new plan into work here at home, as I alluded to last post...
I barely have time to myself on any given day. I'm not complaining! I like busy! I have been having sleep issues recently ~ like I don't sleep. I'm high strung ~ plain and simple. I have a lot of nervous energy. I know many people are like that ~ have to have their hands busy at all times, running lists in their head, etc. I never have time, it seems, to just sit and relax or turn my head off. I am usually doing some sort of housework. homework, finishing, counseling, cooking, packing lunches...... (the list could go on and on) until bedtime. I know that is a familiar habit with most people, I'm no exception. I've gotten into a bad habit of running around doing all manner of things right up until 9 p.m. My husband and I get up at 4:30 a.m. So therefore we go to bed earlier than most, I believe. When 9 p.m. rolls around everyone is on their way to bed. So I hurriedly take a shower, tuck everyone in, say bedtime prayers, goodnight, I love you; then I fall into my bed trying to go to sleep myself, but my head is still whirring and I lay and I lay. In an effort to be proactive in making more "me" time, I'm quitting "work" after the supper dishes are done. Therefore...I've had some enjoyable evenings this week stitching. Here is where my stocking stands as of this morning:

August 27, 2015
Quaker Stocking_8_27_15

Like 100% of everyone else on the face of the earth...
I'm busier than busy, but I have to have one day where I run errands, make appointments, etc. With my work schedule being primarily on weekends and the days before and after them,  I have to have one day during the week to just run. Yesterday was that day for this week. 

I got up at my usual time...
and actually put on make-up! Here's a picture to prove it:

Vonna August 2015 Polaroid

Most of the time I go around looking like Hagatha because I walk my daily 3 miles right after I walk Ellie to school. I'd just sweat make-up right off if I put it on in this hot/humid weather, so I don't put it on most days. But yesterday....I had a meeting at a new local senior health living campus as they just opened and there are around 5 Catholics there and I and my partner Eucharistic ministers will be taking the Eucharist we had to get introduced to the staff and meet our new people. The priest came and blessed the facility and it was just a very nice time. Then I ran to my LNS (Fancy Works) and picked up my order waiting for me. Then I had to do the mid-week shopping we shop twice a week because our kids are eating machines. So I went to SAMs. By the time I made it there it was 1 p.m. and I was hungry! So I decided to treat myself to lunch at SAMs. And it was a perfect time to slobber all over my new stash!

Lunch @ SAMs

I got a "SAMs Slice Combo" which is a slice of pizza and a soda and I hadn't treated myself to my favorite frozen yogurt sundae in a long, long time so I got a triple berry sundae! YUMMY!

The stash was:
Heart in Hand "Woodland Peace" limited edition kit
Lizzie Kate "Tiny Tidings XX" and "Night Before Christmas Sleds"
La D Da "And Rudolph"
and Plum Street Samplers "Lesson Three Serial Bowl" I have all the lessons. Waiting...

Then I got home...
Unloaded Sally and put everything away. And laid out a new quilt square that I'm donating to our church for the new choir practice room. Since this one will be an inside quilt, I'm doing it on canvas. It is 4 x 4 feet. Here is the layout: 

Canvas Quilt Square

and I promptly went out into our garage and started painting it:
Canvas Quilt in progress

After I saw how lovely it is coming out on a canvas...
that mind of mine, you know the one ~ that never turns off, well it started thinking of all the wonderful small canvases available and I thought: 
Wouldn't small "seasonal" quilt canvases to scatter throughout the house seasonally in seasonal colors be wonderful? 
While supper was simmering I started looking...
and found these patterns:

Yeah...stay tuned....I think I am...

My kiddos are in the midst of Cross Country Season...
here they all are at their meet last Saturday at LaVern Gibson in Terre Haute, Indiana

Jacob ~ All time career Personal Record 21:08

Ian ~ 21:34 Course Personal Record and Season Personal Record


Katie's picture was taken about 5 minutes before she collapsed. I'm not being dramatic. She was running great, started off the race fabulously and would have made a huge PR. But she had been struggling all week after work-outs with feeling bad, exhausted and aching legs. We figured out what it was: electrolyte imbalance and she had gone into heat stroke, basically. She was white as a sheet and not sweating at all. Thank God, going into the last K, I noticed she was not looking right. So I started running down to the finish chute. She didn't come and she didn't come. Finally, I saw her in the distance falling. She got up and would fall again. When she got up the last time, she was holding onto a fence and was like stumbling, and I could see she was incoherent. So I started sprinting and screaming to: "pull her off course, pull her off course!" But people were just looking at me like I was an idiot and staring at her ~ not doing anything. SO I sprinted the rest of the way there, and pulled her off myself. She immediately collapsed and was not awake at all. Three people came to help me, and they got ice and I got her shoes off and her watch off and we started putting ice on all her pulse points. Someone brought water and a Gatorade, but at first she'd choke...then finally she roused enough that she could swallow. When I got to her, she was saying (well sort of whispering/gasping) the Hail Mary, over and over. I knew she prayed when she ran because she says it gives her strength and diverts her mind from the race and how she might be hurting. Being a distance runner takes a strong mental attitude. That's why I encourage my kids to do it. It makes them mentally tough and physically strong. Anyway...little did she know that we needed to say that prayer, because she was in a bad way. 

They all run this same course, this weekend in the Indiana All Conference Meet. Will you please, please pray with me, that she comes out strong and stays well the whole race? That all of them do? Makes me a nervous wreck...and I can't be there this weekend because it is the weekend I work. But I told Keith to be ON TOP of the race and go along the course at various points to make sure she's A-OK! No professional help got to us until 20+ minutes last week. It was a nightmare, really. But the good news is: She's fine and I saw the best out of three people and their kindness and compassion while helping me. I was solid all the way through taking care of her, but once the professionals arrived, I fell apart a little. I really can't think about it without crying. So I'm not thinking about it.
God was with us, that's all I have to say, He was with us. 

Here's the finishing I've done for this week...
There was a huge order for custom project envelopes, iPad envelopes, needle envelopes....

Project Envelope Custom Halloween Custom Envelopes Fall Envelopes Dr. Who iPad cases Comic iPad cases


DTS_Nancy Stocking DTS_Amelina Stocking

Tooth Fairy Pillow...
I do like the tooth applique on the tooth pocket on back :)

JP_Tooth Fairy Pillow Front JP_Tooth Fairy Pillow Back Pocket

and I really loved the bold choice of fabric on this one!

JP_Gingerbread Boy

that does it for the run down for the last week in August!
After today I work Fri/Sat/Sun, I'm "off" on Monday (but that's laundry that's really not being "off") and then work Tues/Wed next week. Have I mentioned I've picked up a few more days work each pay period?

Until next time...
I'll be keeping my hands to work,
my heart to God, 
while treating my neighbors with kindness and respect, 
and trying to be the best me I can be.
I stumble and I fall, but I pick myself and remember:
To thine own self be true. 
Loving my neighbor as myself. 
Let's all try hard to show love and kindness to our fellow human beings in this world.
From the headlines I read, to the demeanor of many people I meet ~ this world needs a change. A big change! And the only way its going to get there is if each and every one of us make the effort to be what we ourselves preach in our own heads. And don't we do it? If we are honest we do.
So be the change you want the world to be. Practice it and let it shine.
Grass roots people...grass roots! 
Let's make this world a better place!
Love in stitches,
Vonna xxxx