Saturday, December 17, 2022

It's a Party!

 Finally after a two year hiatus due to Covid, I was able to have my annual Ladies Luncheon Christmas party. Everybody came and no one was sick. I neglected to take any pictures so I rely on the kindness of others who did. 

Here are Terry, Maxine, and Donna enjoying the cocktail of the day. I make a signature Martini each year. This time it was Peppermint Martini made with vanilla vodka, Peppermint Schnapps and Half & Half. They were rimmed with crushed candy canes. They were delish, if potent. No one had more than one. Then we switched to wine for lunch.


Terry and Sheila who must shop at the same store and look equally attractive and festive.

  Ermine and Mickie.

                                                               Marlene  and Sheila

Mary, Donna, Marilyn, Chris and Claire

                                             Sisters, Marilynn and Chris in holiday attire.

                                         And my sister and me, sharing a special moment.

We were 15 in total and I'm sorry that I don't have a picture of everyone. I'll just have to hire a better photographer next year.

Hand made party favor napkin ring, made last year and not used because the party was cancelled at the last minute because some of the guests had been exposed to Covid the night before.

If I don't post before them I wish you all a very Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays and a happy healthy New Year.

Thursday, December 15, 2022

Longwood Gardens

 My sister and two friends, Claire and Maxine took a mini vacation to Kennet Square, Pennsylvania to see the fabulous Christmas exhibit  at Longwood Gardens. You can go here to read all about it and see pictures that are way better than mine. I took so many pictures, but here are just a few.

The first several pictures were taken in the conservatory. It was one magnificent tree after another, each one a different theme.

Aqua anyone? One of my favorite colors and this tree was stunning!

                            This is a close-up of a tree decorated entirely with dried flowers.

Maxine wore a pretty puffer jacket in lavender. The orchids on and around the tree were a perfect match!

All fresh flowers in a spiral around the tree. BTW all the trees were fresh, as were all the flowers and plants.

It was hard to get the splendor of the central part of the conservatory. There was a spiral path running thru made of red poinsettias. A very large display.

This was taken outside in a tree house of sorts. We did a lot of walking around thru the grounds and it was beautiful, but the real show stopper was the light exhibit outside at night

I'm sure that a better camera than my iPhone would have been able to capture the magic of the light displays. I took a ton pictures, but none of them did them justice. Many of the deciduous trees were wrapped from head to toe in lights of every color. From a distance this one looked like all white lights, but when you got closer you could see all the colors mixed in.

This is one of three tunnels of light that we walked thru. The lights kept changing color. Whole sections would be magenta that gradually changed to green or orange or other colors. Mesmerizing and beautiful!

I am usually a purist who only likes white holiday lights. Longwood Gardens changed my mind. Please go to their website to see the true glory of it all. Or take a trip and see it in person. It was about a 3 1/2 hour trip for us and we stayed over two nights in a hotel. We also visited the Brandywine Museum that features the art of the Wyeth family.

We also went to Winterthur, another DuPont mansion done up for Christmas . It was charming, with a different themed tree in each room. 

I am waiting to get pictures from yesterday's party. I did not take any (shame on me) and am hoping that others did.

I'm liking up with Off the Wall Friday.

Tuesday, December 13, 2022

And more non-glass ornaments


Metal with a spiral at the end of his coat.

       I bought him in Germany. Wooden and if you pull on the cord his arms and legs jump up.

Made out of felt. I don't think he's handmade, but still very cute

                                                            Femo clay and a sea shell.

                                                   Another wooden one bought in Germany. 

Made by me a couple of years ago. Followed a pattern and he was VERY labor intensive.

Flat fused glass purchased in Murano, Italy.

I made this many years ago when I was doing needlepoint.

Many years ago I had a friend who made adorable mice ornaments. She would make anything you wanted and I chose Mr. and Mrs Santa Claus The detail is amazing. My son was a toddler at the time and she made him in a blue all-in-one sleeper hugging his favorite brown dog toy (named Brown Dog)

I probably missed a few, but that's enough for now. Tomorrow I am hosting my "annual" Christmas luncheon, which was cancelled for two years due to Covid. I was all set to have it last year.....had all the cooking done, party favors made, both tables set, martinis set to pour and someone came down with Covid at a book club meeting (I was not a member) . This was the night before my party. Half of my guests had been at the meeting. We cancelled, much to my dismay.

I'll send some pictures in my next blog.

Friday, December 9, 2022

More non-glass ornament

 As promised, here are a few more

A simple Santa bought at a church fair.

                         This Santa was a gift and he is made from antique quilt pieces.

I purchased this guy in Hawaii several years ago. Notice the snazzy shorts, bare feet and ukulele, yet you still knows he's Santa.

A needlepoint Santa, probably bought at a Christmas bazaar.

Also a gift several years ago. He is made from canvas, then hand painted and coated with something, probably gel medium to make him very stiff.

This Santa and the one below were purchased at the Red Lion Inn in Sturbridge, Mass. on a trip several years ago. I like his plaid fleece coat. This one stands on my baker's rack with other Santas and the one below is on the tree.

This beautiful hand painted glass ball was purchased at the Hartford Flower Show. The painting is exquisite and his curly beard flows around to the back.

That's it for now. I have a few more to show the next time. 

I am just back, today, from a  three day trip to Longwood Gardens and Winterthur. I'll tell you all about it when I get my pictures organized. Talk about Christmas overload! You will see what I mean when I post about it.

Wednesday, November 30, 2022

Hand Knit Ornaments

 I said I would show you some non-glass ornaments, so here are just three.

My dear friend, Paula, is a knitter extraordinaire.She makes the most intricately patterned exquisite sweaters, gloves and hats. Over the years I was thrilled to be the recipient of three knitted ornaments  for my Santa tree.

They are each about four inches tall.

                        This one has a felted face and beard with a knitted hat. So cute!

                                           This one is all knitted. Note the curly beard.

How about these Santa's long johns with the tiniest buttons down the front? It even has a drop seat in the back with two more buttons.

A few years ago she made a series of adorable animal dolls. She brought them to my house for Show and Tell at a FiberWorks meeting. As I oohed and ahed about this bunny/girl, she insisted that i take it. She happily resides on some throw pillows on a chair in my bedroom. Everything is knitted in, including the skirt and Mary Janes. She even has different striped undies and a tail in the back

I cannot knit or crochet so I am always impressed with other people's talents. Paula is very talented in other areas and has tried so many different arts and crafts. She is currently engaged in making collages. Of course they are also fabulous

Come back for some more non-glass ornaments. 

I'm linking up with Off The Wall Friday.

Monday, November 28, 2022

I'm Still Here

I got an email from a high school friend asking if I am alright since I haven't blogged since early October. I'm still here and I am fine. Just lazy, I guess. I haven't been doing any sewing. I seem to have lost my mojo. Maybe I'll get it back. Thanks for asking, Judy.

I did start my decorating this past weekend and as of today, I am finished! Two trees, my mantle, baker's rack, dining room table and sideboard and entry hall table. Whew! It is a lot of work, but I love the results.

I hire a young man to haul the heavy tubs from the basement and assemble my big  very heavy artificial tree. I bought it at Costco a few years ago and have loved it for it's size, its realistic look and the pre-lit lights. HOWEVER when we plugged it in this year, I could only get blinking lights. I HATE blinking lights. No matter what we did, we couldn't get it to change to solid lights. So I had to put six strings of new white lights on it. A real bummer.

I was starting to think that this was all a little too much for me. At my age. Maybe this would be the last year that I go to this much trouble. Then I started taking the ornaments out of the box and I remembered why I do all this. I LOVE my Santas and can remember where I got most of them. This year I counted the glass Santas. I have 75! And I add to that a few fabric and homemade ornaments. I do like the results and enjoy seeing all my old Santa friends. 

Tomorrow I will show you some of the hand made Santas.

I always show you what my niece, Lauren, does for Thanksgiving. Always a culinary and visual feast. NO exception this year.

A beautiful centerpiece using roses, Protea and alstromeria. 

She aways has a special drink, this time it was gingerbread martinis compete with gingerbread Peeps. Way too delicious!

And the usual cast of characters. Lauren's daughter, husband and two boys and my sister and me. 

If you come back, I promise I will show you some of those handmade Santas tomorrow or the next day. You've seen my glass Santas.

Thursday, October 6, 2022

Margaret's Leaves

Margaret, a dear friend and member of our FiberWorks group passed away a few years ago, much too soon. She was an avid quilter and left behind a huge stash of fabric and several unfinished projects. A few members took some of them home to finish. I took a bundle of leaf prints on a tan and white fabric. There were a lot of them in orange, green, tan and brown. There was a lot of the background fabric, too. They had been languishing  in my studio for awhile because I couldn't get excited about the colors. But last week I took them out and started playing with them on my design wall.

I eliminated the dark brown leaves because they didn't print very well and I was satisfied with these colors. I sewed one row together with sashing that was the same as the background. Big mistake! It was very boring.

I went through my batiks and found a few that I thought would work. I didn't have enough of one of them and decided to use several. Since the leaves are different colors, I thought that the mixed colors of the sashing would be fine. I do like the way it looks. It looks darker at the bottom because of the lighting.

I had just enough background fabric to make borders. Now to quilt it! I'll show you when it's finished. 

I'm linking up with Off the Wall Friday.

Thursday, September 15, 2022

This and That

I know that it's been a long time since I've blogged. I was going way back and looking at past blogs when i was posting two or three times a week. It just seems that I don't have much going on  that is blog worthy, but I will try to get better.

I finally got my big quilt hung over the couch in the family room. My cleaning lady and her hubby came over on Sunday and did it for me. I never could have done it alone. I'm glad to have it up where I can revisit all my blocks, but I think that the one they took down looked better. I can always switch them aground.

This is the quilt that was taken down. What you can't see here is the extensive free motion quilting. I love this quilt and others did, too. It won some ribbons at shows and was featured in a few books. You can see that it is an entirely different look. Actually this was taken before piecing the blocks and quilting. I have a gazillion pictures on file, but couldn't find one completed. If I do find it I will put it here.

I'm always having fun with my card making. I did quite a few that I call spinning circles. The center circle spins around when open and has a different design on each side. Here is a sampling.

This was my first attempt. I used an embossed card that I have previously made. It is a thank you card and has a different saying on the other side. I liked the way that the embossing looked so I did that on the rest. I have a lot of embossing folders.

I had made several using my plain circle dies before I thought of using my scalloped circle dies. I really like the look and will use that from now on. I tried a square and it works, but I think the circles are cuter. I sent one to a friend who displayed it on a table where the AC hit it and sent the little circle spinning.

I finished my Christmas cards this week, all 51 of them. I know that so many people have stopped sending them, but not me. I love making them and receiving them. To me it's a big part of Christmas.

I'm linking up with Off the Wall Friday.