Monday, March 31, 2014

Another Rainy Day/Vintage Sachet Hearts

 As you know, I have been making sachet hearts for years for a service project with my Guild Sisters.  We have made well over a thousand.  I've been seeing hearts made from vintage linens and wanted to try my hand.  I just used the same technique that we use making the hearts with flannel for the hospitals, except using a vintage embroidered dresser scarf.  It was stained and torn and the perfect piece for re purposing. I traced some hearts using the motifs as my guide.
 This piece was worn and really loved.
 I cut these templates from place mats.  Whenever I made a pattern that is work keeping, I trace it on an old place mat.  This one has a texture on one side making it an excellent template.  No slips.  We also use a water soluble pen for tracing.  Sometimes it is persistent and you have to wet it several times to get it to stay gone.
 All that hand crocheted lace will not go to waste.  I wound the lace for another project down the road.
 I was able to get eight hearts from the scarf.
 ...and a couple of yards of lace.
 I pinned the backing, I used a heavy cotton duck to the hearts and pinned and took it to the machine.
 I left two together since there wasn't much space between then for cutting and them trimming the hearts.

 Before I cut the hearts I filled them with a couple of teaspoons of lavender buds and a little fiberfill.  Then I sewed the opening I had left for the filling closed. After they get stuffed, sometimes they get a little mangled, but we have enough fabric left to trim off any mess.  In this case there was so little fabric left to trim, I left it for the very end.  It worked beautifully.
 Another procrastination project.
 Aren't they lovely...
and they smell divine.

I have been forgetting to mention that I missed my blogging anniversary.  Can you believe it has been 4 years and over 850 blog posts!  I have made so many dear friends, and learned so much visiting your blogs and learning about your lives.  That you visit here and stop to comment amazes me still. I am a hugger, and so many of you deserve a big hug for all your love and encouragement.   I have had the pure pleasure of meeting some of you in person...and I hope to meet more of you as we travel and visit.

My life, with all the good and even the hard times, has been charmed in so many ways.  I feel so blessed for the opportunity to share it with you, and honored that you visit. .The friendships I've made here At Home in English Valley are cherished.  Thank you so much, from the bottom of my heart.  Enjoy this beautiful day!

With Love,

Friday, March 28, 2014

Rainy Day

 Feeling blue yesterday, without the gumption to get up on a ladder to paint the kitchen ceiling, I took advantage of a rainy gloomy day and sewed.  I have had this linen calendar for a long while.  What's the significance you might ask...well, in 1974 I met my May, the 25th to be exact. What attracted me to the calendar were the songbirds.  I knew I would use them one day.  What attracted me to my sweetest you might ask...It was like a lighting at first sight, but I digress...
So I took some fusible web and ironed it onto the back of the is linen it and needed a stabilizer.
Then I cut the birds out leaving a boarder and including the names of the birds.  I ironed them into place on the prewashed flour sack towels, them zigzagged them into place.
 A quiet and gloomy Thursday, turned productive.  I love when that happens...

 A quick trip to the local thrift and I have another quilt.  It's "denim blue faded up to the sky..." a old Cat Stevens song, but apropos to this blue beauty.  A double size and a perfect Ravinia blanket, picnic in the yard blanket, make up the bed on the deck blanket.  
 Commercially made,
and very cool....and I also got a picnic didn't hear that here 'cause I need one more of those like a...well you know. ;-)

They are tearing up the street in front of my house and it sounds like summer...There is a saying that there are only two seasons in Chicago, Winter and Construction...started early this year!

Have a great weekend and thanks for stopping by.  Enjoy this beautiful day.

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Headline: March Lion Frozen, Lamb Delayed!

 Can this be the end of March?  The snow covering the ground yesterday morning is all but gone now.  There are still dirty piles of snow in parking lots and shady corners of the yard.
 It sure looked beautiful, so I ran inside for my camera...could this be our last snow of the season?
 I saw something on Pinterest, a gathering of garden books and such...and "such" I have.
 Putting them all in one place is right up my alley these days.  I am still trying to keep my forty days and forty bags.  I have amazed myself that I have been able to let so many things go.
 My tastes have changed so much over the years, that it has been easier than I thought it might be.
When you have been keeping house, or playing house ;-) for so many years, things start to weigh you down.
I haven't regretted one thing that I have tossed or donated, but I am sure I will someday need one of the things now gone. ;-)

Had some small visitors again yesterday, and actually watched Frozen this time.  Now I understand... Not my favorite, but I sure would like an Ice Palace, the little bird and I agree, it would be awesome!

I have been trying to visit my friends in blogland, and feel bad that I have let that part of my routine go in order to complete my Lenten projects.  Just know that I so appreciate your friendship and your kind comments and visits here.  Take care my friends and enjoy this beautiful day.

Monday, March 24, 2014

Fresh as a Daisy

 A weekend update of sorts.  We spent Friday and Saturday with the girls.  So much fun.  The little one was my constant companion.  I called her the koala, she just wanted to be close, and that was fine with me.  I only got sneezed on once, so there is hope I'll have the antibodies in my system to fight off whatever little germs they brought with them.  I had many deep conversations with our five year old.  She is wise and the best big sister.  We watched Frozen twice..I still don't know how one sister got frozen...maybe when I got the apple juice, made the peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, cut into a flower shape...the cheese sticks, or changed a diaper, I must have missed a point in the plot.  Having the girls warms my heart, but also makes me realize how very much I miss my sweet p. and how much of her life and snuggles I miss everyday.
 On Sunday we got out for a short ride.  The sky was so blue, but it was still cold.
 When we walked at sunset, the temperature was 27 took me a while to warm up.
 I delivered a large bag of unwanted stuff to the thrift, but had to go inside to see if there was anything good.
I found 2 yards of this fun fabric.  Brand new...doesn't it look like Where's Waldo?...
 and two creamy dinner plates...
My thrifting bug was satisfied.  Today a visit from Jon and Charlotte after their PT.  They are starting to feel better, though Charlotte will be having surgery soon on her knee that was hurt in the accident.

I am fine, and have refrained from picking up anyone over 40 lbs.;-)  I still have the cabinets to paint, but was sidetracked by looking for a pattern...I have looked in every file folder, notebook, project bag and binder to find this pattern.  Google hasn't helped, nor my PC or I pad since my dearest showed me how to search them...  It's a crochet pattern, and I won't give up till I find it...One of those things that's driving me crazy...or as my Dad would say, It's not a drive, it's a short putt.    Wish me luck and enjoy this beautiful day.

Friday, March 21, 2014

Ready for Company

Step one of my kitchen spruce up is complete. The sage green walls are a calm and neutral color. It took me all week to paint, I hurt my back in the silliest way possible for a 59 year old woman. I picked up my six foot two inch, 200 something? pound husband. It seemed like a good idea at the time...We were walking and my dearest was hurting, a stitch in his back he couldn't walk off. I had him stand behind me, on the street, and I grabbed his arms and lifted him off the ground on my back. It did nothing to help him, so we kept on walking. We did grocery shopping the next day, and I forgot all about it. By Sunday I was walking like the Hunchback of Notre Dame. Then I remembered! As my Dad would say, What a knucklehead! My brain has not received the memo yet that I am too old to do things like that! Oi vey!

So a job that would have taken me a day at most, took me five.

I couldn't get a good photo of the color.

How about some daisies? Spring fever, on the first day of Spring!

The one spot I didn't paint...our grow chart. Family and friends have added their height for as long as we've lived here. We have yet to add sweet p.

The company coming is my sweet little bird and baby bug, my great nieces. Grandma Elizabeth is moving his weekend so I get to have some fun. All the paint and ladder, put away for now. Things look clean and neat, so even if I don't get to the cabinets for a while, I feel accomplished.

I haven't visited much around lately, forgive me for that. I only seem to visit when I can't the good news is I am sleeping just fine. ;-) Have a great weekend everyone! Thanks for stopping by and enjoy this beautiful day.


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Monday, March 17, 2014

Weekend Update/$100 Kitchen Makeover

We didn't do much this weekend, except buy a couple cans of paint for a spruce up. My sweetheart was sitting on a Lowe's gift card so that was our first stop. The bottom color is what we choose for the walls. We don't have any large walls to paint, just soffits, backsplash...the largest space is behind the refrigerator. Fussy painting.

I saw this on Pinterest, and since much of my house is a blue like this, I thought the muted green would be a good choice. The cabinets are getting a creamy white.

I made my terrariums . They are a little spot of life in this gray winter world that is still our reality.

I made one for a friend, and for Jon and Charlotte...they all needed a little cheering up.

This is a little project. I have a roll of chicken wire and I'm not afraid to use it;-). Riding this wave of creativity, cleanliness, and healthy living...and yes my friends, I am pacing myself!

Enjoy this beautiful day.

Love, Penny

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Saturday, March 15, 2014

Stewdio 9 in Lake Villa, IL

 It's been a week since we visited Stewdio 9 in Lake Villa, IL.  for locals it's at 19020 Grass Lake Road.
We were visiting the button sale and saw a sale sign. The store is in an old barn and there is nothing I don't like about old barns.  These Tiffany style lamps were hanging from the trees.  A beautiful burst of color against the stark winter surroundings.

 Yes and that's the way they spell studio...
 Remember the great cute.
 There was so much to see, starting right on the front porch.
 When we walked out of the main shop and into the barn itself we were smitten.
 Why do barns seem colder than the outdoor air?
 There were great displays everywhere, but on this particular day it was freezing in the barn so we didn't stay long.  We will wait for a warmer day to really check out the place.  The owner was charming and told us a little about how they got started.
 We also love tree farms, and this one seemed to be part of the property.
 I'd like to spend some time watching these trees grow. ;-)
 Don't you love these posts that hold the clothesline?
This is the backside of the house, a mansion really.  There was no good vantage point to photograph the front since it's situated on a busy street.  It reminded me of the Italianate Style of homes in Galena Illinois.
Well, we will visit again, and you might ask if I bought anything...I did...two piano player rolls.  I saw them made into a banner at another store recently and I want to try my hand at it.  Stay tuned...
Have a great weekend my friends, and enjoy this beautiful day.