Friday, December 31, 2010

Reflections of 2010!

I can hardly believe that last year at this time
I was not a blogger!
I didn't have any idea that a wonderful community of quilters and other creative and talented crafters existed out in cyber land.
Then in early January, we watched the movie Julie & Julia. 
Her idea of blogging her progress as she cooked through Julia Child's cookbook prompted me to start my blog to document my progress on the Mariner's Compass quilt that I started for my husband. 
I quickly discovered the vast pool of talent from all over the world.  The first blog that I came upon was Kviltstina over in Sweden.  I was amazed at Stina's talent and how she incorporated stitchery into her quilts.  I joined her Valentine 2010 block giveaway and started stitching!  
I hopped through several of the blogs on Stina's blog list discovering so many more talented quilters.  
I started following and reading blogs and I was inspired! 

In March, I joined my first Friday Night Sew-In over at Handmade by Heidi and Crafty Vegas Mom.  Heidi and Bobbi co-sponsor this monthly sew-in and I have joined them every month.  I finished many projects by dedicating this night to sewing.  

I kept reading and discovering new blogs. 
  I followed a quilt along over at As Sweet As Cinnamon and another at Charming Chatter.  I joined a swap over at quilting gallery.  I joined the Charming Girl's Quilt Club and sew much more!

So here is a college of most of the quilts I made over this first year of blogging.  

There are so many other projects that I have finished over this year including totes, mini bags, wristlets, pincushions, needlecases, and toys.  I have knit baby blankets, an assortment of headbands, chemo caps, and coffee cozies.  I even tried some crochet.  
Many of the projects were found through the blogging community.

So a BIG THANKS to the blogging quilt community. I have been awed and inspired.
There are sew many more, I couldn't mention everyone by name.  Hope you understand.

Here's to a prosperous New Year!


Sunday, December 26, 2010

It's almost time to welcome in the New Year!

I hope you all had a wonderful, blessed Christmas with your family and friends...taking time to reflect on the 
true meaning of Christmas and the birth of Jesus.

Here is a small peek into our Christmas traditions!

On December 19th, we had our annual Troll Stroll celebration.  This is a progressive dinner with our Norwegian friends and family.  
The first stop is appetizers...herring, salmon, shrimp and cheeses. To drink...glogg! YUM!  
As you can see, I forgot to take pictures until the bowls and plates were just about empty!

The second stop is the main meal...polse, limpa, and soup.  This is also the visit from the Nisse lady and Trollina (Nisse lady apprentice) bearing gifts for the children.  

The third stop was at our house this year! DESSERTS!  Several kinds of traditional Norwegian cookies, krumkake, ricecream, and kransekake (ring cake) and, of coarse, coffee and liqueurs.
My husband made 3 kransekake this year and they were delicious!

After plenty of food and celebration, we relax and sing (thanks to Frank our guitar player).  
We had a fabulous time! 

The very next evening, we hosted what has become known as the 
4 friend's families party.  We have been getting together at Christmas since all our children have been very small. 
 We raised our children together, attended the same church and school.  
As now our children are mostly grown and our lives have taken different paths, we strive to continue getting together at Christmas. As you could say, we have HISTORY.  

On Christmas Eve, we are invited to our dear friends home for more Norwegian traditions.  Appetizers of herring, cheese, flatbread, and lingonberries.  
We eat the most scrumptious dinner of medista-polse, pork roast, rutabaga, potatoes, and vegetables. 
We attend church together for a time of worship and reflection.  
Then back for dessert, coffee and our exchange of gifts. 
We have the best times together!

Sad to say that I didn't take many pictures this year...

Christmas Day morning is spent at home with our immediate family opening gifts, lots of coffee and my traditional cranberry almond coffee cake.  In the afternoon, we celebrate with my extended family...grandma, cousins, aunts and uncles [this year, at my brother's home]. The annual ornament exchange, presents to/from grandma, turkey dinner, pumpkin pie, cookies and chocolates...
I really must get better at remembering to take pictures. 

Tomorrow we are off for some wonderful relaxing moments in Wisconsin at the beautiful Osthoff Resort with our dear friends, Ken & Ruth and family.  We cherish this time together!

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Friday Night Sew-in results

This will be a quick post to tell you all what I did for FNSI! 

First on my list was making a school of fish!  
See those catch those cute little fish.  

Still need to attached the hooks to rods for the finished fishing game!
This pattern came from a tutorial here.

Then I put the finishing touches on these knitted headbands.  
The yarn ends needed to be hidden, buttons sewn on, and the flowers crochet and sewn on. 

The red flower headband is adult sized and the pink flower headband is girl sized.

I'm glad I had better results this FNSI! 

Tomorrow is our Troll Stroll party and we have the dessert stop.  Yum!  
We are busy getting ready....
no sewing until Monday (unless I seek a break - hehe.) 

Hope you had a productive FNSI!

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Getting things done!

I was suppose to participate in the Friday Night Sew-In last Friday but I had forgotten that my DH and I had signed up to volunteer at the local homeless shelter.  I still wanted needed to get something done so I packed my knitting needles and some yarn.  Off we went to the shelter.  We serve on the 5:45 - 11:00pm shift.  We set up the beds, tables for serving dinner and breakfast, register the guests and then settle down to play games and mingle with the guests.  So once all the work was done and we settled down to mingle with the guests, I got out my knitting.  It wasn't the best place to knit as I got distracted and had to do my share of unknitting!  I got about 1/3 of another headband knitted.  Better than nothing! [This has been finished and another one started!]

Then on Saturday, the internet was down so I couldn't blog or link to FNSI.  Well there is going to be another FNSI this Friday, maybe I will do better.

Anyways, I have been busy getting things done!  I made a bed ruffle for the new queen size bed in my D2's room.  She will be home next week for Christmas and the room is shaping up [but far from finished!]

Sorry for the poor quality picture...the fabric is plum with a small green leafy print.  I used the tutorial here which gave a great tip on gathering for ruffles.

I also made 4 new stockings! The pattern is called Snowdrift Stockings and was free from Jillilystudio.

I just love how they turned out...all hung on the chimney with care!  
One for each of  my Ds and one for my FSI.

Do you see My Perfect Man quilt hung with my snowman collection?  My collection has grown so large over the years that I need to leave a few unpacked each year!

Another Christmas tradition my family has each year is the handmade ornament exchange.  I usually make between 12-18 ornaments each year.  This year's ornament is finished!
[It's the gingerbread house]

All the ornaments on our tree [with a couple exceptions] are handmade.  Here are a few of my favorites! 
And I made another sweet zip bag for someone!

Before I forget again, I want to give credit to a couple of people from my last posting.  I was in such a hurry that I forgot to link to the patterns I here they are...
~the place mats were made from a tutorial at Pink Penguin
~the first table runner was made from Amy's tutorial at Diary of a Quilter
~the Christmas table runner was made from Kristin's tutorial at Kristin La Flamme

Now all is good!  

I still have things to do but I am getting closer.  
Cookies are getting baked and the house is nearly ready. 
We host the dessert stop on our annual Troll Stroll this year on Sunday! 

Hope you are taking time to enjoy the Christmas Season!

Monday, December 6, 2010

What's been happening?

So have you been wondering where I've been?  
I have been very busy, at work and sewing and the usual Christmas hustle and bustle to get it all done! You ask if I have it all done?  Not even close but I keep taking steps forwards.  
Here are a couple of finishes!

My Perfect Man quilt is finished! He will look perfect with my snowmen collection!

I've knitted/crocheted a couple of these simple head bands. One for my D3, one for my D3's suite mate, and one for myself.  I have one more to go for my D2.

I finally got around to making coordinating place mats to match the table runner that I made here in April 2010.  I used scraps left from the runner and found some deep red fabric to match. I love them!

Can't say too much about this one because it is a gift for someone.  Shhh! It was made from scraps left from a quilt I made years ago!  I have been lovin' using fabric from my scrap bag!

Another gift for someone this Christmas! A wacky Christmas table runner.  Inside each wacky square, I quilted a little present.  This was also made from my scrap bag!

A few more things a happenin' but no pictures yet...Hopefully I'll get a chance to report back on some more finishes!
  Happy Holidays!