Thursday, October 23, 2014

Shepherd's Bush - Last Day

The final day is the longest day and yet seems to fly by.  I suggested to Terri that they make it a week long retreat in the future . . . she agreed it would be nice.  We could then take both tracks and have Wednesday off in between . . . more time in classes and more time to explore Park City!  Let's start a petition!!!!

Our day started off with Cecile and Rachel with Just Another Button Company.  All our supplies were included in a box and with the knowledge that a lot of the participants in their other class finished their project, we jumped right in!  Didn't seem to be too many overachievers in our class . . . at least we did get the basic pumpkin put together.  Here's what it's supposed to look like finished:

I was concerned about the 4" "Gather" pin getting through TSA Screening on my return flight . . . no problem . . . seriously?  That's kinda scary!

We had an hour and a half break for lunch and then on to Chessie and Me.  Linda's design is so cute and is stitched on two different colors of linen seamed together with a pine tree hiding part of the seam . . . too cute!
During classes each day Terri would show up with a small gift.  One time Jeannette came with her . . . their enthusiasm is contagious!  LOVE these two FUN women!!!!
Our gifts were more than trinkets!
Each day in the retreat shop there would be a different kitted goodie:
and also a freebie chart:
Classes were over at 4:30 and the Banquet stared at 6:30.  How can it have whizzed by so fast!!!

The banquet is always fun!  We had a delicious meal and played "Family Bingo" for candy and prizes.  There had been a wreath in the retreat shop with childhood pictures of each of the teachers . . . their identities revealed on the Bingo cards.  Our final retreat gifts were in a basket in the center of the table . . . a darling Shepherd's Bush chart - Over The River.

And then there are the gifts from my "Retreat Friends". . . dear kindred spirits that I don't get to spend time with often enough!
Somehow I managed to get this all in my carry-on!!!

Sadness sinks in on the way to the airport.  Waiting to cheer me up when I get home are a few of my deer buddies munching on driveway treats.

Back to reality.  In 3 weeks I will be heading to Lake Junaluska, NC for my EGA Retreat . . . bring your own projects . . . fun, but can't compare to Shepherd's Bush!


Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Shepherd's Bush - Day 2

Oops!  Forgot to tell you about the evening event of the first day.  We had dinner on our own and then gathered for dessert and "Thankful Stitches".  Cute project!  Yummy chocolate dessert!

 All the pincushions everyone made were on display . . . beautiful work!  If you participated in the Heifer project, you would randomly get one of the pincushions!
This is the beautiful pincushion I was lucky enough to receive!  Thanks so much Diana for your lovely work!

Friday was our first class.  In our track we had Shepherd's Bush first.  It's been a long time since we've had a class with them.  We knew we liked all the designers in both tracks and chose this track because we were curious to see what Cecile & Rachel with Just Another Button Company had to offer.

There are no two sweeter people on the planet than Tina and Terri!  Their designs never disappoint and with Jill Rensel's mats/frames you can't help but drool!  We sorted threads and began with a companion piece pincushion to review the specialty stitches that will be in the larger piece.  Terri had a little wool pumpkin pin-keep project for us to do as well.
 And, if this track wasn't already good enough . . . our friends (equally as sweet as Tina & Terri) Nancy, Lancy & Tammy were in our track as well!  So much fun reconnecting with our retreat friends!!!

We had the afternoon free and headed to Park City for lunch and shopping!
Cafe Terigo was delicious!!!!  Perused the shops along main and bought a pair of boots . . . had them shipped . . . can't wait 'til they get here!

Friday evening we gathered for "Bountiful Buttons" with Cecile and Rachel.  We made buttons (and other goodies) from polymer clay.  Cecile and Terri and others stayed up late "cooking" them in toaster ovens to harden the clay.  They were delivered to us, along with some "professionally" made buttons in a cute jar!
While we were shopping in town, we stopped by a liquor store to pick-up some libations in preparation for having some friends come to our suite for a visit.  (We spent time with Diane and Rabbit the night before at The Farm for drinks and put a major dent in our drink budget!)  Myriam picked up a Moscato that appeared to be in a screw-top bottle.  Short of The Hulk, I don't know who could have gotten the top off!  Myriam had to literally cut and peel the top off!  It was a sparkling wine and rather exploded when she peeled the last bit!  Where there's a will, there's a way!!!  Go Myriam!!!!
That evening Lisa and Tamara came down the hallway in their jammies  to our suite and we enjoyed catching up with them!  LOVE our retreat family!!!

Look for the last day of retreat and the banquet tomorrow . . . trying to drag this out to make it last!!!!


Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Our 5th Shepherd's Bush Retreat

Can't believe we have now been to 5 Shepherd's Bush Retreats!  How blessed are we!

The anticipation for these Retreats is so intense and then you get there and have so much fun and suddenly . . . it's over!  Let me relive it here . . .

We arrived in Salt Lake City from various points around the country on Wednesday . . . 3 of us scheduled to arrive within a half hour of each other.  Barbie was delayed (seems someone is every year) so Myriam and I picked up the rental car and headed for Ogden to the Shepherd's Bush Open House.  We perused the shop and greeted friends we've made over the years, had a little snack and headed back to SLC airport to pick-up Barbie.  We made it back in time for Barbie to shop and visit with friends.  We also stopped by Jill Rensel's Studio for a chat and more snacks . . . none of us had eaten lunch.  Checked into the hotel and headed to an early dinner at Roosters (one of our favorites).

Our 4th member of the retreating "Fun Girls" was already in Salt Lake City with her family preparing to actually move there!  Jenny missed the events in Ogden (she'll have plenty of time to visit their shop after they move) but made it to Park City in time to meet with the Facebook members of the Prim Stitchers Society.   Michelle did a great job organizing this meet-up and we were sorry it was over before we arrived.  We've decided for future Shepherd's Bush Retreats that we'll come at least a day or two earlier and maybe stay a day of two after . . . just not enough time to do everything we want to do!

The Retreat shop opened at 11 a.m. and was PACKED with cross-stitch hungry shoppers.  Waiting in the long line was made pleasant by greeting retreat friends as they arrived!

Registration began at 1:00 where you picked up your schedule and welcome project and dropped off your handmade pincushion for the exchange and paid your $5 for the Heifer Project.  Shepherd's Bush matches the donations and buys sheep.  Check out the website:
Look out . . . "The Fun Girls" have arrived!

We settled in working on our welcome project and waited for the reveal of all the class projects.
The welcome project was all the things you needed to put together a little cross-stitch necklace.  There is enough fabric to do all 6 designs but, only one chain and bezel . . . you could put one design on one side and another on the other side.  I'll just buy more bezels and then either wear them all on one chain or interchange them.

Then it was time for "The Reveal"!  There is no way you can go wrong with your choice of track.  ALL the projects are fabulous!
Track 1 -  R & R

 Track 1 - Plum Street

 Track 1 - Jeannette Douglas

Track 2 - Chessie & Me

 Track 2 - Just Another Button Company

Track 2 - Shepherd's Bush

That's enough for today.  Stay tuned for more "Adventures of The Fun Girls" tomorrow!

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

A Dream Come True

I have had craft spaces before.  Cramped craft spaces.  Spread out over several room spaces.  A sewing space here . . . a beading place there . . . set-up . . . take down . . . spread out on the dining room table . . . always in the way!

When we first moved here I claimed what was once the nursery for the previous owners for my crafting space.  It's a small L-shaped bedroom.  (You may remember reading about me putting the quilting table together.)  I never shared many pictures of that room because it never really came together in a very functional way . . . always cluttered and never enough space to properly put things away that made them accessible when the time came to use them.

Also upstairs, is the master bedroom and a full bath.  This bedroom was the hubs' when he was living here.  My bedroom is one of the two on the main level.  (We have separate bedrooms because he has a c-pap machine and tends to growl when he moves around . . . a lot . . . all night . . . not conducive to sleep for me.)  Now that he's living in his own condo and working out of town (except for weekends) the master bedroom was empty . . . he sleeps in the guest room on weekends.

Empty no more!!!!

Welcome to my new and improved STUDIO:
 The quilting table sits in the middle of the room . . . accessible from all sides.

My cross-stitch threads for my personal use are to the right of the windows next to the shelves that house all my favorite charts waiting to be stitched.

My "professional" cross-stitch threads (Gentle Art & Weeks Dye Works) hang on the closet doors arranged by color along with the samples of Weeks Dye Works fabrics.  Great light from the double windows to pick just the right colors for my designs!  All my Nebby Needle market stuff is stored in that walk-in closet along with my linen stash.

Then we have the collection of fat quarters for quilting and pincushion backing.  That cute yellow bug sitting on top of those shelves is my radio/cd player . . . gotta have music while I work.  The drawer cabinet is filled with small pieces of linen (just right for pincushions).  On top are my wool and silk threads . . . and above that is part of my vintage postcard collection . . . I love old postcards!

The hubs gave me a magnetic knife holder for Christmas that makes the perfect place for my scissors above my sewing machine.  My daddy made the sewing machine cabinet.

The other walk-in closet houses all my scapbooking supplies and boxes of pictures to go through.

In addition to all my creative space, I have a workout area.  In the armoire is a tiny combo tv/vhs player.  I can watch (or at least listen to) tv or play one of my workout tapes.  I have my exercise ball, my step my daddy made for me, free weights and exercise mat.

 Overflowing storage with yarns and felted wools . . . and yes, I like to collect frames for small projects.

The color bins hold my chart collections, trims, ribbons and more yarn.

I still have some things to put away, but this is going to be so great!!!

There is an unfinished room (part of an addition) that is on the other side of the wall where the sewing machine is.  This will eventually become my bedroom when the hubs retires and moves back home permanently.  He will take my existing bedroom downstairs.  How perfect to have the entire upstairs as my own!!!!

No need to feel sorry for the hubs . . . he has an entire building (25 x 51 feet) out back that he fondly calls "Train World".  And . . . he's living in a 4 bedroom condo where he has one bedroom as his "Train World" there as well.  We are both feeling very spoiled and loving it!

Life is good!

Friday, September 12, 2014

Is That Autumn In The Air?

They're talking about a "cold front" coming through . . . supposed to be 80 degrees today and a high of 71 tomorrow with the low being 58 tomorrow night.  I love fall but, somehow I feel like I missed summer.  I've been so busy this summer doing other things that my love of gardening has been sorely neglected!  My gardens have never looked this bad . . . I'm embarrassed!  The only advantage to the neglect is that my butterfly bushes have seeded themselves everywhere!!!
I have plans for all of these volunteers.  I'm going to plant them along the back wall to soften the view of  "Train World" (our very large outbuilding).  The butterflies and humming birds will LOVE it!

Been busy designing more freebies . . . if I were a smart business woman I should have just packaged all of these together in one set to sell  . . . but, who doesn't like a freebie!?!

Halloween is just around the corner so get busy!

The colors in order of symbols:
GA 7063 Onyx     GA 7041 Apple Cider     GA 7059 Pumpkin Pie

I stitched this on Weeks Dye Works 35 ct. Beige Linen
R&R Chenille trim: Smoke
The design measures:  136 x 47 stitches

Enjoy!  ~*

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Running On Empty

This has been one hectic month!  It's always hectic a month before Market trying to finish up everything and get packed up (not that I've had much experience since this was only my second Market).  Add to that my in-laws moving to the area and it was a bit crazy.  I made 3 trips (a little over 3 hours one way) to Charlotte, NC to help them pack.  On one trip I packed 40 liquor size boxes of 6 different patterns of dishes . . . services for 12 each with every serving piece ever made for those patterns . . . and 3 other patterns in process of collecting.  I stitch . . . my mother-in-law collects dishes . . . whatever brings you joy! 

Their actual move happened the weekend of Market.  After Market there's a period of feeling "jet lagged".  I guess it's because you're running on adrenaline at Market . . . the exhaustion from getting ready . . . the anticipation . . . the 9 1/2 hour drive . . . the socializing . . . the lack of "down time" . . . the getting lost circling St. Louis on the way home . . . the 11 1/2 hour drive home.  Since my return from Market, I've been over to the in-laws' new house helping unpack . . . not the dishes yet.  They are stacked in our garage awaiting the assembly of the third hutch.  This move really is a great thing and it will be so nice to have them close by once they get settled.

I had a break . . . I guess you could call it that . . . this past weekend.  The hubs and I went to Spencer, NC to a train show.  The show was rather small and, in my exhaustion, wasn't much fun for me.  It was nice spending time with the hubs, but what I needed desperately was some alone time!  I require some alone time now and then to recharge with no demands . . . until yesterday, I can't remember the last time I got that "recharge" time.  I "recharge" stitching, gardening, quilting and reading . . . all meditative activities for me.

Market was great fun though!  My friend Kathie was my "super salesperson" (not my forte)!  She had her spiel and definitely increased sales.  (Attendance was down at this Market and sales were not as good as Nashville).  My spending was up however!  It's not about having the time to stitch it all . . . it's about the collecting (they just don't weigh as much as dishes)!

We were next door to LaDonna (Black Branch Needlework) and her mother Peggy.  LaDonna and I had met at a trunk show/meet and greet at Valley Needleworks  in celebration of their one year anniversary and reconnected at the Nashville Market.  She and her mother are so fun and came over to our room in their "jammies" each night for wine (whine) and cheese.  We've enjoyed meeting the other designers we've admired . . . okay . . . "stalked" is probably a better word . . . everyone has been so nice . . . but, we are "newbies" to the Market world, and as such, are not included in the established cliques . . . so, we will form our own. 
So, as things slow down I will get to stitching the 3rd pattern I wanted to have ready for St. Charles but didn't have the time to stitch and get a jump on my designs for Nashville in February.  You never know, my parents have their house up for sale and may be moving anytime and the chaos may start all over again!

Recharging!  ~*

Saturday, August 9, 2014

TNNA Fall Needlecraft Market

TNNA Fall Needlecraft Market is next weekend!  I will have two new designs for this market as well as my full catalog.  If you are interested in any of my designs, be sure to tell your LNS to pick up a copy for you.  If you are a shop owner and going to market, please come see us in room 605.

A Handful Of Love

Every Leaf

Back to work . . . more printing, folding and bagging to be done!!!