Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Handmade gifts and...

....the end of the year. Wow, 2008 has flown by so quickly!

It has been a great year of blogging. I made many new cyber friends from it. I'm grateful for everyone and everything that has touched my life in the past year. Thank you to those who stopped by and read my blog.

Wishing you all a Happy New Year!


I thought I share with you some handmade gifts in this last post of the year. I love to make handmade gifts for Christmas and have always included my family in the making of those gifts throughout the years. So it is a pleasure to know that they have adapted this attitude which made this Christmas even more special.

The first present is from Sweetie Pie.

OK.... it's not handmade, but it's a thoughtful gift from the heart. Every year, her school set up a Christmas Shop for the students to buy gifts for their families. I helped out in the Shop every year, so I knew what they had to offer and would perused and mentally picked out the items for each person on her list. However, my guesses were always wrong.

Also, she bought everything with her own money this year; I didn't have to help out. The mug said... "Mom ... you're the best in the world". It's an expression that she often uses.

For her Grandma (my Mom), she picked a mug that said "Grandma gives the greatest hugs". Sweetie Pie's explanation ... that is what she loves best about Grandma.... too sweet!

Now you know why I called her my Sweetie Pie. :-)

The next gift is from Mandy. She sculpted a miniature of our little Suki in clay. You know how much I love my doxies.... gotta love this mini creation. *:-D* She said she ran out of time but promised to make one of Yoshi Bear when she has more time.

Mandy also has taken a fancy to making little plushies lately and sewed some up for her friends. I wished I have pix to show, but I was working so much during that time that I missed the whole productions. :-(
I heard that there were a panda, a dog, a cat, and a tiger.

Here's a raccoon that she made for her friend's birthday a couple months back. It was made from one of her drawing, and she designed the pattern all on her own. I'm very happy that she has taken an interest in sewing again. :-)

Mandy is also an artist. She drew a portrait of her youngest cousin, Baby James, at 6 months old in charcoal for my sister.

The photo isn't the greatest due to the glass, but I thought she did a wonderful job.

Here's James admiring his portrait along with his dad....

Remember this quilt, Nifty Thrifty? I finished it just in time right before Christmas for John. Hee Hee... he saw me working on this quilt and didn't know that it's intended for him. He even suggested what color to use for the binding! lol

The quilt is very cozy. I used a combination of flannel and homespun plaids for the top, and the back is all flannel.

The last handmade gift this year is a shelf/quilt rack that John made for me. Usually, I know what he's up to, but I was clueless and very surprised on Christmas day.

My plan is to hang it in the play/guest bedroom. It's not on the wall yet, so that's why the hands are in the photo. lol The kids were holding it for me to get a photo.

Monday, December 29, 2008


I hope you all had a magical Christmas. We spent a quiet Christmas Eve over at my sister's house and a quiet rainy Christmas Day here at home..... simply wonderful!

It was nice to have had some quiet and relaxation times after the last few weeks of getting ready for Christmas and working almost full-time on top of it. Then, I'm back to working this last weekend; of course, being in retail business, it was a crazy place to be in right after Christmas. I'm looking forward to getting back to just doing part-time hours after the New Year.

On Saturday night, with John and the kids helped with the cooking, we had a some of our friends and their families over for dinner. What wonderful time spent catching up with our friends! It's the best part of the holidays for me... spending time with family and friends... and eating! ;-D


I survived the temptation to open the gift from my Secret Santa till Christmas Day ! :-)

This is what Vickie sent me.... a quilted Christmas wreath...

... a Santa ornament...

...a book on Northern Australia, chocolate, candies,

Christmas FQ and pre-printed ornaments panel,

and a lovely stitched card....'s a close-up of the card...

isn't it pretty?
Thank you Vickie for all the lovely gifts. It made a very special Christmas Day!


This is what I made for my SSCS partner, Gertie at Trudi's Craft Room....

do visit her blog... she has a great blog and more pix to show.

Also, a big thank you to Chookyblue for this excellent swap! This has been a lot of fun, and I'll definitely will do it again next year if she's doing it again. :-D

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Merry Christmas!!

Wishing you all a Merry Christmas
from all of us!

Saturday, December 13, 2008


Last Saturday was my birthday. Since I had to work on that day, we decided to go to Downtown Riverside to see the Festival of Lights the night before. We got there just as the sun about to set ... love how the colors came out in this photo. This is the Mission Inn all lit up.
I collect Nutcrackers... so love this too.... Another favorite.... almost life-sized mechanical figurines ...
As we walked around, we came across these two....
Great Dane! I'm so used to the size of my litte doxies that these two are like ponies to me. :-D
Then we found Cinderella's carriage....
... how could we not ride in Cinderella's carriage?.... It supposed to be 10 minutes ride turned into more than half an hour ride due to traffic. We enjoyed the extra long ride. :-)

After that, we found Santa (he's not real) sitting on this huge chair.... had to have the kids take a pic with him. Buddy wasn't with us that night because he's in a rock band and had a gig.
We did a lot of walking and window shoppings. The shop behind Santa's chair is an antique store... we spent a large amount of time in there. I found a couple of things that I liked but couldn't really asked for them since I've already received my presents earlier. One thing was a 24" white goose-feather Christmas tree (forgot to get pic), and this tiled birdhouse.
At $89 ... it's out of my budget. But I do love the whimsicality of it; this will be a future craft some day. I even have the birdhouse already.

As mentioned earlier, I had to work the next day on my b-day. John wanted to take me out to dinner afterward, but truthfully, after a BUSY day and even stayed longer than my scheduled time, I rather not go anywhere but just to be home and just eat leftovers. lol I was quite happy when I got home to discovered that he had ordered pizzas.... that definitely worked for me. Then, he and the kids had a banana split ice cream cake already for me too.... gotta love them all. :-) ... don't asked me why there are only 4 candles on the cake.. lol
I got to pick out my presents this year. I love it when that happened....
...found three layer cakes (10" charm pack) at my LQS. I already made something from one of them so that's why there are only two left... will share my project in future post.
I ordered a few things from Connecting Threads...
and the last gift from the family is a new LITTLE camera... so small that it will fit in my pocket.... these photos were taken by the LITTLE camera.

My friend, Pam, gave me this pampered set and matching pouches. It's so sweet of her to think of me.
Well, so far 44 is starting out pretty good. LOL I hope it stays that way.

Friday, December 12, 2008


My goodness! Is it only 13 days left 'til Christmas? I haven't done a thing for the holidays yet... except for adding a Christmas tree countdown to the sidebar.

It seemed that I may have lost the last few weeks. Where did the time go? Usually, we bring out the Christmas decorations right after Thanksgiving, but since I worked that weekend, we didn't get to it.

Then I worked last weekend too, and again... we didn't get to it. Hmm.... do I see a pattern here? I guessed Christmas doesn't come if the person (ME) doing it every year wasn't here to set it up. Hopefully, we will get it started today; I will have the older kids help get the decors down from the rafters after school.

I am soooo looking forward to a weekend of no work(job), and a weekend of decorating, crafting, and maybe get some shopping done.

Anyway, I had good intentions to post about the Secret Santa Christmas Swap but that got away from me too.

The package for my partner went out on time and has arrived safely to Australia.

I received my package from my Secret Santa right before Thanksgiving. It is safely stored in my cabinet so there's no temptation to open it. It will go under the Christmas tree once we have it up. Let's see if my resistance to open the gift will hold out then. lol

Thank you, Secret Santa, whoever you are.

Well, I better get my rear going if I want to get things done.

Have a great day, everyone!

Friday, November 28, 2008

The Black & White Quilt Challenge

We spent a quiet Thanksgiving afternoon with our friends, Pam and Ted. I baked an Oink turkey, aka ham, and green beans casserole while Pam baked the turkey and all the trimmings to go with it. Pam did a great job roasting the turkey this year; he came out looking beautifully.... nice golden brown.

As usual, we stuffed ourselves with too much of the good stuffs... doesn't everybody? :-) Afterward, we settled down to watch James Bond movie marathon on the tube while the kids played their games upstairs.

We didn't stay very late... had to head back home for an early night because I had to work today, the Black Friday. Since I work in retail business and they're open at 4am this morning, I was scheduled to be there 15 minutes before they open. It's my first time working on Black Friday, and all I can said is ... CRAZY! Tomorrow morning, I'll be back in that craziness again... although, not as early.
So how's your Thanksgiving?

Not much sewing going on lately here....

but last week, I discovered Jackie at Canton Village Quilt Works started a new challenge for 2009. It's the Black & White Quilt Challenge Project; of course, I signed up right away.... 'cause you know I love working with black and white fabrics. It's a good thing also that I signed up right away because Jackie has now closed the challenge.

That's it for me tonight.... I can barely keep my eyes open now... off to bed I must go. You all have a good night. :-)

Thursday, November 27, 2008


Wishing you a happy and yummy Thanksgiving!

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Cathedral Windows

I tried to write up this post last night but ended up falling asleep at the computer. lol

Then, I tried to watch Pushing Daisies with Sweetie Pie and couldn't keep up with the story ... what with the nodding off again! So I was in bed by 9 pm.... only to be awaken at 4am by the little doxie girl. Apparently, she must have heard some little creatures rustling in the bushes because when I let her out in the backyard, she darted out there and disappeared in the darkness within seconds. She is a fast one! It always cracked me to see how fast those little doxies can run with their short legs. If you have ever seen a dachshund run, you know what I mean. :-D

OK... so you asked what does all that has to do with Cathedral Windows? Nothing! lol

Nothing came to mind when I sat down to write except for the images of those little hunters running back and forth in the yard. We do get wild rabbits and bushy tail squirrels in our yard every so often... and that's right up the alley of what little doxies were built to hunt.

OK... about the Cathedral Windows...

Last week, I went to Jo-Anns Craft Store in search of blue thread for sewing the binding down on Freshly Sliced (see last post) when I happened to see this book.

Now, I don't need another book or another project, and I had made a couple of samples of basic Cathedral Window(CW) before. But what caught my eyes is the shapes of the windows ... this book has different variations of CW such as working with rectangular blocks instead of squares and extra folding techniques. Plus, it was 40% off and another 10% off on top of that with a coupon. How could I resisted? :-p

This book has lots of fun projects in it like these pincushions here....

These worked up rather quickly. As you can see, it is also addictive! I have a couple more that I'm finishing up. The larger ones are about 5" and the small one is about 4".

This is my first sample of CW. It is a little quilt (12x12) and machine-pieced... no hand sewing at all. I saw this technique on Simply Quilts with Alex Anderson a few years back when it was on HGTV.

I'm in the process of looking for the second sample which is a UFO that I had packed up during one of my cleaning episode.... will post more about it when I find it.

For now, I have to get going with my day...

Have a great one!


Sunday, November 16, 2008

2 Finishes

I am done with stitching the binding down to Freshly Sliced. This quilt is the quickest one I've done so far. All it took were 4 packs of 5" charms and half a yard for the inner border. It came out to be about 49"X64".... good lap-sized quilt. :-)

I even remembered to add the label when the bindings were sewn on.

The second finished quilt is Star Struck ....minus the label.... still have to do that. I quilted this in yellow variegated thread.

Whew!! ....So happy to have two quilts done in one week. :-)

.... the back.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Star Struck Backing

Happy Veteran's Day!

I finally stopped by my LQS the other day and picked up some fabrics for the back of Star Struck. They had the perfect yellow fabric for this quilt, and even better, the fabric was on sale. ;-)

The backing made up of the new yellow fabric, leftover piano border, 2 leftover blocks, and a purple fabric that came from my stash. That green bundle on top is the binding. I like to prepare the bindings at the same time as the backing. So as soon as it's quilted, the binding goes on. This way I won't loose the momentum of getting the quilt finished. :-)

Sunday, November 9, 2008

SA and Freshly Sliced

Good news! The package for my Stitcher's Angel partner has arrived safely overseas. Now, I can revealed who it is....... Bea. Yes, it's the same Bea of Capricorn Quilts with the Quilters Blessings BOM. I've been following along with this BOM but haven't started yet. It was a pleasure to be able to make a few stitching projects for someone who has freely shared her adorable stitching patterns.


It's been rather a quiet day here with the teenagers gone, and John was busy with his project and Sweetie Pie with her Social Studies assignment. I love it when that happens. It means I have the afternoon to sew with no interruptions.

During the summer, I had ordered some "Fresh Squeezed" charm packs from Hancock of Paducah during their great 50% off sales. I love the colors of this collection.... it's so fun and "fresh". :-)

I wanted to do something quick and easy.... the Disappering 9-Patch that everyone's been doing came to mind. Thus, last weekend, I started sewing the 5" charms into 9-patches.... then, sliced them into quarters and sewn them back into 4-patches.

It's amazing how quickly this quilt grew.

By the next evening, the borders were added.

Isn't it such a happy quilt? I love it! I used four charm packs and a little bit of muslin for the inner border. It makes a good lap-sized quilt, and I called it "Freshly Sliced". :-)

Yesterday, I loaded the top onto Dolly, my HQ16, and quilted before heading out to dinner with John and Sweetie Pie.

Today, I prepared and attached the binding. All I need to do is to sew the binding to the back. Yippee!! I love to make these kinds of fun and quick quilts.

And now .... time for some relaxations... Sweetie Pie and I will have a nice soak in the spa.... Afterall, there's no school or work tomorrow. :-p

Have a good night. xx

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Halloween Fun

Yeah.... it's the weekend! Work gave me more hours this week, so by last night I was pooped. The kiddos (except for Mandy) and I are looking forward to a four days long weekend. :-)

Here are some Halloween pix that I managed to capture before the battery in the camera went dead....

Meet Waldo and his bunny.... aka Miles and Mandy....

James the Monkey....
I snagged these shots from the family blog. My little nephew... isn't he adorable! One very happy monkey!The Ladybug and the Bumblebee....Here's the Ladybug tried to shed her shell.....and the shell complete gone... only the Bumblebee left....and off they went...

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Stitcher's Angel

I was in such a hurried yesterday that I did not see who had sent the box, so it was a delight today to discover that the package came from Peg of Happy in Quilting!

Inside, there were two bundles beautifully wrapped with pink FQs and a card.

And what's inside those bundles?...

Stitcher's Angel projects! WooHoo..... Peg is my stitching Angel! I had admired these projects on Peg's blog and had thought that her swap partner is one lucky person. Who knew!! ... that I'm the lucky one!
The colors are lovely... the stitchings are beautifully done.... the projects are well made.

And look at these treats she sent .... all the way from Australia! Lovely card by Chookyblue and chocolates.... a girl can never have enough chocolates. lol

I have never seen Vegemite snacks nor Eucalyptus drops before. My family tried the eucalyptus drops. They liked the drops and agreed that it's quite different. Thank you, Peg, for allowing us to try something new and different.

Again ... thank you, Peg!!!! I love everything, and my family thank you for sending the treats. I'm glad that you're my Angel! :-)