A sincere Merry Christmas to all.
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A sincere Merry Christmas to all.
I am wondering how many quilters, crafters and embroiders are up like I am putting the last touches on Christmas. It is now 1:20 AM! My darling husband is up here in my studio right along with me, putting together a quilt. Every year people ask me if I am ready. I tell them that when Christmas gets here, then I am ready.
Last year we started in August making quilts for our grand kids, you know the 14 of them. We were determined we would get them done. Well obviously that didn't quite happen, as I also did three queen size and quilted them.
So we decided that they would get them for their birthdays. The first one is in January and he got his all done except the binding. Not bad. The second one was in February and it was made just needed quilting, and I fell and tore my ACL and Meniscus! So no standing. No quilts out for birthdays this year but all the tops are done. Next year is another year.
Tomorrow is Christmas Eve and I just have a few things to finish. OK, here is the confession, I keep findng things that I would really like to do. That is why "when it's Christmas, then I am ready!
Last year I was flying home from Houston and my seat partner happened to be a quilter! I love that when it happens. We had such a delightful conversation and I learned she was a hand quilter. That is such a great art and needs to be passed along. Not something I would do, but I admire that beautiful work.
As the conversation continued, we shared quilts we had made and what I had quilted and she shared a story that just broke my heart. She made a Double Wedding Ring for her MIL. Keep in mind this was hand sewn and hand quilted. Later that summer they went on a picnic and the MIL brought the precious quilt for her picnic blanket! I was appalled let alone what my new found friend felt.
I expressed my horror and she hers. Then we discussed how when we make a quilt there is so much of ourselves poured into a quilt. Each one has a piece of us. We spend hours working on it and they become like a part of our family and a piece of our heart. Even as we quilt the patterns in our family's and customer's quilts, a piece of who we are goes in.
Later that year I made and quilted quilts for my son and my two step children. As I made them, I thought about them and my love for them and that same love poured out into the quilts. Do you know what I mean? As I quilted them I thought of how they would feel about getting homemade quilts for Christmas. I felt so much joy to be able to give each of them a valued treasure to remember me by.
Russ' daughter has made quilts so I knew they would be very excited as she knew what it was like. Of course, that is exactly what it was when they came for Christmas day. We had to give them just their top as I ran into problems and my SD had done the same with us with wall hanging before; and sure enough there were oohhs and awws. I have quilted quite a few quilts for my SD's other side of thefamily,. so she was very excited of how "the life" would be breathed into the quilt when it was finished.
My son's wife paints and sculptures so I knew she would understand the feelings that go with giving our "art" away. When they opened their quilt, she was so excited she cried. She said she had wanted to ask for one but knew what it took to paint a picture and knew the time it must take to make a quilt. My son was right along with her with teary eyes. Then she disappeared. I hoped she was OK. In a few minutes she called from upstairs that we needed to come quick and look. We went up and there it was on their bed and she was standing there with tears running down her face and saying "Isn't it just beautiful? I just never imagined how beautiful they are!" We were so humbled by her graciousness in receiving this gift.
We had to mail Russ' son his quilt. Christmas day they called and thanked us for the quilt. They didn't know what they would do with it since it didn't go in the bedroom but thanked us. I was a little taken back since it was their gift it could be used anywhere or even on a quilt rack. A few days latter they called and Russ' son said he was using it on the couch to cover up with when he got home. I don't know exactly what I expected but honestly I was in a bit of shock. It was a queen size so quite a large cover up. I counseled myself again that it was their gift and I had to realize that they probably didn't understand the value of a hand made quilt.
Then there it was, my thoughts flew to my friend on the airplane. I must have felt just as she felt. Hours and hours of cutting (by my dear husband), piecing and quilting and it was a throw on the couch, not a family heirloom.
It hit me then that not everyone understands the process of making a quilt. So they don't know of the hours. My SDIL didn't even own a sewing machine, so she hadn't ever had the experience of making something from the very scratch for someone. I then knew that whenever we make a gift, we have to understand that the receiver might not begin to understand what went into that gift. But it is theirs now and they have the privledge of using it how they wish. That quilt will still have a piece of my heart and they will have my love and the quilt will wrap my family on cold nights and maybe, just maybe they think of us as the cuddle under that quilt!
Good Morning. I am quilting on my first antique quilt for my good friend Marlena Mann in New Mexico. She is entering the quilt in a contest in February. I am a bit nervous. But as my husband tells me, “the design is the teacher”. It is really true, she just wants a beautiful overall pattern, I am using the Tex 30 Natural thread that I purchased at Rocky Mountain Quilting on Friday. So glad I bought this thread. It will be subtle and elegant with all of tender loving blocks that were carefully pieced together.
Tags: antique quilts
I can't believe it's almost Christmas. Is anyone else in this boat with me? I haven't even done any baking or candy making (although that doesn't stop me from eating it). When friends come over with their treats, I give them a manicure instead of a reciprical treat. They seem delighted. Mostly, it's because I don't have anything to give them. Maybe my homemade treat days are gone. That's okay. I don't have anywhere left to wear them.
My sister-in-law, Valory, has a blog now on thequiltingschool.com. She will be talking about a lot of quilting and embroidery issues so be sure to check it out.
I'm filming on a SunBonnet Sue tomorrow. It is awesome. I have done some quilting on it that has made it very unique. It will be taped in two episodes because I have so many techniques to show you. It will first be shown on the new episode with Gina Perkes.
The opthalmologist called from Salt Lake City. He is worried that Wendy's eye lens may continue to slip. We have an appointment to see him in January unless we notice her eyesight getting much worse. He said if we have to have surgery to recover the lens and put it back in place, it will require two surgeons. For now, he just wants to watch it and see what happens. Wendy is getting along okay, although her level of frustration seems a little higher. Actually, come to think of it, my level of frustration is a little higher at this time of the year too.
I have decided that Christmas will come and go whether or not I'm "ready." I think I will really try to focus on making sure Christ is in my Christmas. I am so blessed and grateful for the knowledge and talents I have been given, and for all my family and friends.
I filmed yesterday with Todd. The filming process is fascinating. Remembering to look into the camera, visualizing you all making the book structure that I am teaching. I love teaching because of the triangular interaction between the student, the teacher and the subject. It is the same when I am long-arm quilting. I imagine the person that is gifiting the quilt and the person that is receiving the quilt. There is genuine energy in the entire process. I am happy to be another connecting link in the journey of this particular quilt.
Victoria Simpson came to stay with us for a couple of days. She is a very smart lady with many talents. She is filming how to make a little book without using any glue. I'm going to make one with her tonight. It will be on the free section of the site. Her books are amazing. She has taught book arts at the college. If I wasn't a quilter, I think I would like to make books all day long. Be sure to check it out.
Wendy seems to get around the house just fine if we make sure we don't have stuff on the floor so she trips. She got an IPOD Touch for her birthday and she likes to play on it all day. She listens to music and deletes the games. But its okay, the computer restores them every night. The doctor hasn't called yet on his decision of what to do about her eye.
Yesterday, I spent the day in Rexburg, ID. I was glad to visit with great friends and spend the bulk of my time there creating German Stars. It is a tradition with the German people that the family hangs a star with a light in the window. Our family has German ancestry and I wanted to continue that tradition.
Wendy stayed in her room almost all day. Her pyschiatrist says that's okay. I used to try to coaxe her out to mingle more with the family but he says her room is her little world, sort of a cave, and it is a safe place for her to be. She likes old magazines. She sits on her bed and cuts them up into a million, no billion little pieces - I'm not kidding. Sometimes she colors them. She listens to her music and sings along. I taped her once and If I can get Todd to show me how to put it up, I will. It is so cute. She gets the main words and makes up the rest. She can't carry a tune at all, but she does know Fortissimo!
When she did come upstairs to eat, I noticed she tripped on every little thing the kids left out. We really have to have a family council and talk about that. They can play upstairs with all the toys, but not down here because she absolutely cannot see anything on the floor in front of her. Actually, she is very very brave to walk around like she does. I would be clinging to the walls and sliding my feet. She still tries to play her DS. I have ordered a bigger one but it isn't here yet. She has it about 3 inches from her eye and still talks to the little dogs she has bought in that program. She didn't have any tantrums today, the doctor talked to her yesterday about that - we'll see how long that lasts. We just never know what will set her off.
Still waiting for doctor to call and let us know what he can do, meanwhile it's day to day. Thank you all again for your support and for your prayers, everyone of you. Your notes have really touched my heart and I feel so close to you. -Linda
Our oldest daughter, Wendy, has Williams Syndrome. She lives with us. She will be 42 years old this December.
We visited the Moran Eye Center in Salt Lake City yesterday for an eye appointment for our daughter, Wendy. Wendy has had 2 detached retinas. One occured when she was in a group home in Texas where she lived for 4 years. When we brought her to Wyoming to live with us again, it was too late to fix her left eye (after too long a time, even if the retina is repaired, it will no longer reconnect and communicate with the brain). That eye had formed a cataract and no one knew the retina was detached until the surgeon found it when he removed the cataract to put in a lense.
Not more than a month later, we found her stumbling around the house one morning and took her to the doctor here in Wyoming. He sent us immediately to Salt Lake (University of Utah Moran Eye Center) and they did surgery that day on her retina. It also had a giant tear in it. She said she fell down in her room against her night stand. She had to lay face down for 3 weeks for the retina to heal properly. This was soooo stressful because it is hard to get Wendy to even sit still, but we did it, mostly due to my husband's patience and loving care while I had to teach at 2 shows. After surgery, that eye formed a cataract (we knew that would happen). So they did cataract surgery 6 months later and put in a lense for the best vision they could give her.
Now, the lense has slipped (probably due to her hitting her face when she has occasional tamtrums). The doctor isn't sure what he will do. He will call us later this week after consutations with several other doctors. If they can't save that eye, she will be blind.
I would sure appreciate all your prayers in our behalf. The thoughts of poor little Wendy living in darkness is almost more than I can bear. There are also additional risks in surgery for people with William's Syndrome, even though she has had 2 open heart surgeries. We have been lucky and feel very blessed to have Wendy. She makes life real for us and keeps our feet on the ground. When people get caught up in the pettiness of life, we always have Wendy to remind us what's really important.
Is there life after Thanksgiving? Yes, but there is also the diet that I need to go on for sure this time. I ate way too much, how about you?
I started a new quilt today that I am really excited about. It is a kit that my sister finished and sent me from Keepsake Quilting. I am using
"Thread by Design" by YLI, my own line of thread. It is a black quilt with neon green and orange, right up my alley. The thread really shows up perfectly. It somehow always surprises me how the quilts turn out so well. I just get an idea and then start quilting and then stand back and I am almost always very pleased with it. I think just getting started is the hard part. We are all worried that whatever we have decided to do on the quilt may not be the perfect design, when we just need to quilt something because there are a million "perfect" designs. This one is turning out nicely. We will film it for one of the episodes of Linda's Longarm Quilting.
Happy Thanksgiving to everyone. I want you all to know I am sincerely grateful to all my friends who have taken classes from me, who read my blog, follow me on facebook, take the time to comment and for those of you who have joined thequiltingschool.com
If I have been able to help or inspire you in any way along your quilting path, I am deeply honored and feel incredibly blessed. Over the years I have laughed and cried with many of you through the trials of life and that has made all the difference in my life, and in my family's lives as well. These are the best of times and we will get through the worst of times with faith in the Lord.
This year I have most of my family here for Thanksgiving and we have invited several friends as well. I hope you all have wonderful family and friends surrounding you. Cherish these moments. I like to take a minute to step out of myself and look at the scene as if I wasn't there. It brings incredible appreciation for each moment I live. Change is the only thing that is constant in our lives and from one moment to another will never be the same.
I also feel incredibly grateful to live in this country, and for those who have served this country so valiantly. I have several members of my family who died for my freedom before I was born and I like taking time to think of them and remind my grandchildren of their sacrifice. I'm thankful that I have been chosen to clap and cheer and count my blessings.
May you all be healthy and happy!
Tags: Thank You
So I can see this topic is important to many of you out there. I have received several messages about my last post on pattern digitizing. So.. I have crafted an answer to one of the questions. Basically the question is this.. if you already use AutoSketch to digitize patterns, is Art 'n Stitch worth your time and effrot to learn - not to mention your $$ to buy it.
I caught a nasty cold and cough. My daughter, Tiffany, has been giving me breathing treatments or I wouldn't even be able to breathe! I keep debating whether I should call a doctor. Isn't it funny that we take care of everyone else, but don't do the same for ourselves? What's up with that? I know exactly when someone in my household should go to the doctor, but I always debate when it's me. Anyway, I felt a little better today until tonight. It always gets worse at night. I will take it easy this weekend. It snowed all day today. Again.
Tags: Nasty cold
I'm already tired of the snow. I'm thinking how long it will be before I see green again. We have about 5 inches here on the hill where I live and the roads are already hard to get up the hill. The school bus won't stop at our driveway anymore so we have to take the kids a little ways further to meet the bus. It just can't stop on the hill. I don't blame him. Last year I saw the bus off in the ditch twice on our road.
We got ready to go to Jackson Hole to get Carla Scott last night from the airport. I called the airport just to make sure her flight was on time and they said there was no such flight. I checked her itinerary and it said March 4-6, 2012. Then I remembered that her father was ill and she had to reschedule for spring. I wonder how many other things I have forgotten? But if I can't remember them, then I won't know if I've forgotten them? Actually, it turned out fine because my house was clean and it was snowing, so I just snuggled down with a book tape and had a wonderful Sunday evening.
I am so excited; tomorrow we pick up Carla Scott from the Jackson Hole Airport. She is coming to tape 4 segments with me on Linda's Longarm Quilting. She always has the most colorful and interesting quilts. If you haven't seen her quilts, you will really be surprised by her techniques. I will try to get some behind the scenes shots on my blog.
It snowed all day. We are getting the storm that is hitting the West right now. My grandkids played outside in it most of the day. I wonder how long it will take for the newness of snow it to wear off? Of course, they are from Texas and rarely see it. They get all dressed up in unbelieveable garb - they can hardly move. It is really cute. Winter is here to stay for us. The last snow didn't melt. That's a tale-tale sign.
It's not easy getting back to reality. I sort of feel like I'm in a virtual world. All of my shows are finished for this year and I thought I would have a break. I have been filming for the last 2 days. The quilts have been soooo great. I can't wait for everyone to see them. I did a Timberline Log Cabin and a wonderful little Christmas table runner. Somehow I have to fit house cleaning, doctor's appointments and cooking into my schedule again. I have decided that a show is actually a vacation for me.
The next two episodes of Linda's Longarm Quiting are with Laura Heine and Pam Clarke. They gave us so many ideas that are refreshing and new, very inspiring.
I got a gel nail kit and dryer and I ordered the Konad stamp kit, so I have been doing my nails and all of my family and friends' nails. I must say I have got pretty good at it and I am absolutely having a ball doing it. I highly recommend it, especially if you have finger nails that crack or break like I do, this is the solution. As soon as I figure out how to put pictures on this blog, then I will share that with everyone.
I'm sitting in the airport in Dallas waiting for my next flight thinking about my flight just one week ago to Houston. My flight from Jackson hole was cancelled and so I had to fly to Denver, then back to Salt Lake, then to Dallas and finally to Houston. It was a grey long day. This morning I got up at five to get ready, pack and be on the road again. It literally takes one day to go and one day to return, one very long day both ways actually. I'm so lucky. I have the greatest husband. Rick is driving to Salt Lake ( four hours). To pick me up because my connecting flight to Jackson Hole, WY, isn't until after 8 tonight. This way I can be home by 6pm instead of 10 pm It's such a relief. I hate sitting in airports for more than 3 hours if possible. I heard that we have snow now in WY. I love the snow, I just hate driving on the roads. I'm thinking it probably won't stick long until the end of this month. It's okay, I have plenty of quilting to do in my studio and my freezer is full. I also keep thinking of all the lovely Quilters I met this last week. I feel so blessed to have so many friends in my life And they are all such hard workers and very creative, they inspire me to be better in every way.