Sunday, December 30, 2012


Life has slowed down a bit in our corner of Missouri.  We had some nice snow on Friday, but what you don't see is the layer of ice underneath it all that transformed our little town into an ice skating rink in a few hours.  More snow is on the way for tomorrow.

This is a busy time of year for me.  I'm straightening and organizing my sewing room in preparation for a wonderful 2013 filled with new quilts and machine embroidery!  We have a small business and this is the time of year to close out the books and get set up for the new there have been very few idle hours around here for the past week.

I made a few snowflakes for the Sandy Hook Elementary project and was advised last night that they are no longer accepting any more snowflakes due to the enormous outpouring worldwide!  I'm thrilled about the response, but saddened that our snowflakes aren't there.  One of the drawbacks of living in such a small town with limited shopping is that I had to order the special stabilizer for machine lace from the Internet and it took a week to arrive.  Our snowflakes will go on our tree as a reminder of Sandy Hook.

Enjoy the remainder of 2012!  I wish you a very Happy and Healthy 2013!!


Wednesday, December 26, 2012


I hope Santa filled your stocking with every sort of goodie and treat and that you had a wonderful time with family and friends on Christmas day!  I especially enjoyed my time on the phone with my granddaughter Bree. 

Our Christmas day was slow and sweet.  We had several calls from family and friends and followed that up with a good meal.  Actually I ate far too much and will have to take it easy today with the treats!

Traditionally this is the day to go shopping for next years Christmas cards and wrappings...also to exchange those items that don't fit or please you and to spend your gift cards!!  This is the day I don't go near a store of any type!  According to the news the holiday sales were the lowest since 2008 when the country was in a hard recession.  The good thing about being a quilter is that we manage to get our hands on fabric regardless of the economy.  I wonder if I should put myself on a fabric diet..not buying any more fabric until I use up at least 1/3 of my stash ~~~ no that will never happen (no discipline in this area!!). 

This is the time of year when I reflect over the last 12 months and look forward to the fresh new year.  I'm formulating some goals for my quilting and also personally.  Like everyone, I would love to lose some weight and be more physically fit.  

Creatively, I plan to use the 25th of each month to work on Christmas gifts for next year...isn't that a wonderful idea!!  Someone shared this idea on the quilting forum at Missouri Star and I thought it was such a great idea.  I use the month of January every year to plan and gather supplies for making Christmas gifts next year.  I have also made a commitment to make a few quilts for the Cardinal Glennon PICU in St Louis.  This project is so worth of my time and efforts. 

Wishing everyone a great Day After!!!

Tuesday, December 25, 2012


Wishing all my readers a very Merry Christmas and a Happy, Prosperous and Creative 2013!

Sunday, December 23, 2012


Reason for the Season christmas ecard

Just two more sleeps and Christmas will be here!  If the weatherman is correct, it should snow here on Christmas Day! 

Christmas isn't the same when you don't have children around to maintain the wonder and excitement of the day.  This year Hubby and I have chosen to stay close to home and do our visiting on Christmas Eve.  Christmas dinner will be ham, baked beans, broccoli casserole, fruit salad, jello salad, homemade rolls, Dutch apple pie and cheesecake.  Christmas morning we will have semi-homemade cinnamon rolls and coffee and starve ourselves until our dinner around 2:00. 

Here is a new twist on cinnamon rolls I'm going to try Christmas morning:

1 bag frozen cinnamon rolls (12 count)
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup melted vanilla ice cream (measure after it's melted)
5 Tbsp butter

Put frozen rolls into a buttered 9x13 pan.  Put the sugars, ice cream and butter into a saucepan and bring to a boil and cook for 1 minute.  Pour this mixture over the frozen rolls.  Place in cold oven overnight.  In the morning bake at 350 degrees for about 25 minutes and drizzle the icing that came with the rolls over the top. 

I have a reliable source that promises these are wonderful!!

Wherever you are, however you choose to spend your holidays, we wish you joy, peace and love... 

                                     Barb, Jeff and Miss Molly

Friday, December 21, 2012


Just look at the beautiful quilt kit I won in the drawing at  I have been waiting anxiously all week for it to arrive and it showed up this morning!  I LOVE IT!!!!!!!!!

The name of the kit is Falling For Fall and it's a great combination of piecing and applique in Fall colors. The fabrics are extra nice and the colors will fit in with our home perfectly.  I know what our new quilt next Fall will be!! 

Thank you so much, Jeanne, for your generosity and giving spirit!  I feel thoroughly blessed!  I think this may be the first thing I've ever won and it feels great!

I wish Peace & Plenty to everyone who reads this blog.  Until next time, take care and keep sewing!    Barb

Monday, December 17, 2012


I have to admit that it feels a bit shallow blogging about the joy of sewing in light of the tragedy in Connecticut a few days ago and the resulting mourning and sorrow.  I know  that our prayers are with each an every person and family affected by this heinous act.  I pray for God's grace, peace and comfort. The sorrow that this act brought into a community and our nation is unfathomable.

We had a slow weekend, but I worked a little on some rug mugs that resemble a fingerprint.  I found these designs at  They come in a wide rage of designs, but I bought just three:  the coffee cup, a heart and a spiral.  These little mats are nice to hold a cup of tea or coffee and a few cookies.


These take about 15 minutes from start to finish and are a good way to use up scraps.  They measure about 5 x 6.5 inches.  One or two of these are cute rolled up and placed in a mug with some teabags or hot cocoa mix.  A quick and thoughtful gift.

Until next time, I wish you Peace.....Barb

Sunday, December 9, 2012


Christmas is really sneaking up on us.  We're done with the busy part of the holidays and can slow down and enjoy the season.  I didn't go overboard on decorating this year  ~~  telling myself that less can be more.

One thing I always do it put up a small kitchen tree that holds a mishmash of miniature kitchen items as ornaments.  The star at the top is an old Pillsbury Dough Boy cookie cutter.  The tiny Christmas tree ornament with buttons was made by a dear friend and the placemats on the table came from a friend in Pennsylvania. 

I am currently working on a sock monkey bow tie quilt for the Cardinal Glennon PICU in St. Louis.  I joined a group at Missouri Star Quilts dedicated to making quilts for children.  I think this will be fun for me, as we don't have any small children in our family anymore and I love juvenile prints in quilts.  There's some serious monkey business going on around here! 

It's Hubby's day off and I promised him french toast and bacon for breakfast, so I'm off to put on my chef's hat!!

Wishing you all a wonderful Sunday filled with Peace & Plenty!

Wednesday, December 5, 2012


There's a lot of excitement about the Twister ruler for making pinwheel blocks the easy and fast way.  I've had a Twister tool for a while and find it a little fussy to use, but this morning I decided to give it another chance.

I saw this design online recently and failed to make a note of where I found it, but it was posted as a tutorial and has been going around for a while.  Kudos to the designer!  This pattern makes a darling Christmas wreath that finishes at 18.5 inches before adding the outermost border.  I haven't added my last border yet.

You will need:

1)   25 5-inch squares of fabric (9 white, 1 red and 15 assorted green).  Having contrast in your greens helps the overall look.

2)  White border cut 3 inches wide

3)  Small Twister Ruler (Lil' Twister)

Sew your blocks together following this diagram.  Press well and add white borders all around.  I used spray starch for the final press.

Follow the directions that came with your small Twister ruler to cut and assemble blocks row by row.  I highly recommend you cut and sew one row at a time.  I find I can confuse myself using this technique with very little effort!!

The difficulty I found with the Twister in the past was with the cutting around the tool.  You need to be very careful to not cut beyond the tool because you can cut a slit in the adjacent block to be cut.  In case that happens, it's a good idea to have a few extra blocks hand to 'recreate' the cutting area where the problem happened. 

Once your center is complete, add an outer border if desired.  Quilt and bind.  I will be giving my wreath to my LAQer who has no time to quilt for herself!


Monday, December 3, 2012


I think the table runner giveaway was a success.  I hope everyone likes their runners.  Most of them are in the mail already ~ I'm just waiting for the last few winners to contact me.  They were very curious about what I was mailing at the post office today.  Turns out the clerk there is a new quilter! 

My husband Jeff was supportive every step of the way.  He put his Santa gear on and drew the winning names for me 'to keep it honest!'
He got a chuckle when I told him someone said he was a sexy Santa!

I guess things will slow down a little for me now.  Normally I don't sew that much in December.  I like to take the last month of the year to put my sewing room in order and make plans for next year.  I also like to reflect over the things I've made during the current year and figure out what direction to head toward next year. 

In 2012 I made three large quilts ~ two were kings.  The Log Cabin was a quilt I started several years ago.  Looking back I can see all the turns and changes my life has gone through since I started making it.  In my opinion, this is the most significant quilt I've made.  It was completed in April 2012.  The other king quilt was the Luna Notte quilt.  It's a simple framed square quilt made from the luscious collection of fabrics by Moda called Luna Notte.  It was completed in June 2012.   I love this quilt.  My daughter (who normally doesn't care that much for quilts) wants one from the same fabric and pattern for herself.  It will be similar, but not identical to ours.  After much searching I was able to find more of the fabric online.

Another large quilt (queen) was made from Prayer Flag by Moda.  The colors are lively but not wild and it looks good in our home.  I used the Jellyroll+Layercake tutorial from Missouri Star for the pattern. 

In the Fall I completed a fairly large Wacky Web quilt from Halloween prints.  I find Halloween prints so much fun to work with.  The prints are so cute and the colors are so vibrant.  All of the quilts mentioned above can be found in previous blog segments. 

Throw in a few quilts for benefits, several group projects, four Jellyroll Race quilts and a quilt for my daughter made from a hand-printed Indian textile, and it was a good year of sewing for me.  Let's not forget 17 table runners for the drawing here and several others for us and for a few friends and family.  Yes, it's been a productive year.

I almost forgot ~~  In August I got a new sewing machine which sews and embroiders.  I spend countless hours lost in the joy of machine embroidery.  Love it, love it, LOVE IT!!

As far as looking toward next year, I want to make a few baby quilts for my great grandchildren.  I may not become a great grandma for several years yet, but I want to make a few and have them ready.  I also still have a few UFO's to finish and the Luna Notte quilt to make for my daughter.  I would also love to make an Irish Chain quilt in red and white.  It sounds like a great new year to me!  I will be here to share it with you.....

Wishing you a life filled with Peace & Plenty!    Barb


My Hubby Jeff is a good sport and agreed to draw the names for the 17 table runner winners and here they are ~~~~

Alana Sullivan
Libby M
Sandy Navas
James Ayers
Donna F
Jeanne Crowell
Rhonda F
Marilyn E
Shirley P
Myrna Roy
Cyndi Zoller
Cecile Bolton
Nancy M

Congratulations to everyone!!!  Please email your mailing address to me at  Indicate in that email which category of runner you would like: Chicken, Christmas or Miscellaneous.  There are some darling runners in the Miscellaneous group.  There was such a great response to this drawing I will have to choose a runner for you.  Originally I was thinking of three runners - then things mushroomed and I had to get busy and make a few more!!

Thanks to everyone who participated!!  Wishing you all a day filled with Peace & Plenty....Barb

Saturday, December 1, 2012


Can you believe it's December 1st already?  Where has 2012 gone? The countdown to Christmas and for the table runner drawing (Monday, Dec 3) is marching on!  The Salvation Army kettle volunteers are already ringing their bells and Christmas carols are playing in the grocery store.  A few years back our town did a renovation and replaced the old street lights with new ones that look like old gaslights.  They are wrapped with garland and topped with red velvet bows and snowflake lights...very nostalgic.

We are doing less decorating in our home this year than normal, but not due to lack of Christmas spirit.  Could it be we're getting!

I changed our bed quilts for the ones we use during the holidays.  I make quilts, but I have never been one to make holiday-specific quilts other than patriotic quilts for the 4th.  I do make table runners in all sorts of holiday themes, but not large quilts. 

The quilt I use on our bed for Christmas is a Log Cabin I made several years ago.  The thing I like about it are the white blocks that outline the setting.  The backing is solid off white and it's hand quilted.

Our spare bedroom is called the Turkey Room because it's protected by Old Tom, a huge turkey that looms in the corner and faces the bed.  The room itself it small, which makes Tom look that much larger!  The quilt in that room is another Log Cabin quilt with embroidered pine cones.  This is one of our few purchased quilts.

Oh yes, here's Tom....

What can I say ~~  I live with a hunter, but he lives with a quilter! 

I wish you a wonderful first weekend of December and a day filled to the brim with Peace & Plenty!!