State Birds

Sheila brought me this quilt to quilt for her….Each one of these designs is hand embroidered and each one represents a state in the USA.

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I Love these type of quilts because of the novelty of it all. All of the details and the hours of work in each block. Just beautiful.

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She wanted something simple and nice to offset them and get them back to the man that they belong to. She did a really great job getting it all back together.

 

IMG_0958 IMG_0959You can see how I market it to quilt that flower. :) and she used a plain white backing. …which I adore.

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A few more before we close:

IMG_0958IMG_0961Thanks a bunch Shelia! Always a pleasure working with ya!

Charisma

 

 


To My Boys

I know several of you moms of sons will relate to this. I have 4 teenage sons. Girls are talked about quite frequently around here. I raised 1 daughter who didn’t make a good choice for a partner…..and even my boys recognize that. Simple things about how he doesn’t make big efforts like getting a job to support himself much less her. How when he comes here ( even though they aren’t welcome until she apologizes & quits lying) he doesn’t carry the heavy boxes or make an effort to help her with anything. He doesn’t open her doors….I notice it-> but I don’t say anything out loud to them. My son Carl actually asked her one day as he decided to help her..why isn’t your boyfriend doing this? instead of sitting in the car. I have to say I was proud of him for that. He knows what it is like to be a gentleman. A few things have been absorbed with my sons and they at least know how they are supposed to treat  women.

But as time goes on and they are in more important relationships other talks come up. I want to get this down so that I can refer back to it later or remind them. I know every game, manipulation, insecurity ect. I had to learn how to be a strong, capable, secure woman and some days that’s even a stretch…:) I can see things in people that they can’t….and I so want to derail some trains…that I can’t. So I need to get this all out for my own sanity.

For my sons,

Who you choose in a relationship will have a lasting impression on your life. No matter how fleeting the relationship…no matter how long the relationship. These relationships are in your formative years..they teach what you do or do not want in a life partner. They teach you how to handle conflict. They teach you how to compromise. They teach you how to be gentleman. How to be selfless. Everything that is happening to you is also happening to the other person. Please don’t take advantage of or let anyone take advantage of you. You are a precious gift from God to the world. Please honor that by leaving a positive lasting impression on anyone & everyone, especially loved ones.

It is not exactly true that opposites attract. Those are outward facts. What is true is that like attracts like…..in all of the important things. If you are insecure you will attract insecure. If a girl is insecure she can’t really & truly love you…..it’s not possible. She can’t trust herself to know what love is because she doesn’t love herself to know how true love really feels. True love doesn’t want revenge or to get even…true love means sacrificing yourself in a healthy way to serve your partner. None of this will make sense to you now. I so wish you could hear me or understand this.It will save you so much heart ache.

I want you to know that as a man you need to help make your partner secure. Not by playing the games. Girls are great at creating games….they can’t help it. They don’t know how they are actually hurting themselves in the process. But you can avoid engaging in those games ( manipulations),  by being a constant source of gentleness & love. You need to protect her heart and yours as well. That is what a strong man does. A strong man reveals his feelings….even if they make him feel vulnerable. A strong man doesn’t hide behind work, sports or money. A strong man reveals his heart. I promise you-> if you do this it will melt her heart and she will no longer feel the need to manipulate any situations. She will feel secure knowing where she stands with you. She will be able to function on any level of love & security.

A strong man opens doors, lift heavy packages, speaks with a nice tongue. No cussing ,spitting, or locker room talk in front of ladies. A strong man won’t hear a bad thing about his loved one nor speak of them in a harsh way. A strong man will lift up his loved one and honor her. A strong man will not take what isn’t theirs. I strong man will treasure every gift, kiss and moment. All of this is equal to respect. I promise if you do all of these things you will get all of this in return if you choose wisely. Hormones & hawt girls don’t create a great recipe for life choices ( if those are the only ingredients). Feelings are fleeting….promises are a lifetime. I promise that all of these principles will get you far in any relationship.

Please don’t settle for what is in front of you right now..in this moment…. You have a lifetime ahead of you. You need to open your heart and life to experiences beyond what you have right now. My quote for this week was “If your dreams don’t scare you …They aren’t big enough”. It’s so difficult to see at your ages that there is so much more to life than right now…the world is so BIG and scary…but it is so much more. It’s beautiful & lovely and full of  experiences that will make your heart explode with gratitude, love, joy, wonder, fulfillment and excitement if you let it. Please see yourself the way I see you.  Don’t I  express how much I love you ? Every single day..when I hug you and (try to kiss you…hehe) tell you how much I love you ? Maybe you think I just have to say or do those things? I don’t HAVE to do those things. I WANT to do those things. I never want you to leave me even for a fraction of a second thinking that you are not the purpose of my life..that you don’t take residence in my heart every moment of every day. I love you so much I can’t help but express that to you every day. When my heart swells with pride and my eyes flood with tears because I can’t bear to think about you leaving me or hurting with a life choice you have to learn from.

Please understand that I know all of this because I have been through every thing I have shared with you. I was an insecure, unloved child that didn’t get affection or understand a healthy relationship. People have had to teach me along the way. I was blessed to have a strong man come into my life and show me what it was like to have a protector and a cheerleader. You know my husband won’t even let you (someone he loves & protects with his whole heart)  utter a bad word about me. Please take note…..Please ask questions of your loved one. Don’t ever assume. Please don’t make the  other person guess or assume. Be clear with expectations. Be clear with how you feel. Listen to how they feel. Let them speak…..hear them. At the heart of every single person is love-> everyone just wants & needs love. When someone is angry..what is really underneath is fear. Fear of a loss of love. If you wipe the word anger out of your vocabulary …and if you think of it as fear…the process of figuring out the other person is simple.

Don’t ever think that everything is perfect. Nothing is perfect. Don’t get lost in that thought of being “happy”. Happy is a passing moment. Happiness is not permanent. Happy is a feeling. Feelings fade with the wind. True inner Peace and Joy are everlasting. Listen to the inner voice…don’t fight it or reason with it…it’s always right. Personal experience has taught me this….always listen. If you get so far from it..you will no longer hear it and that’s a scary place to be. You will never make a truly right decision when you snuff out that voice. But if you listen and follow it..inner peace & joy naturally engulf you….it’s a miracle to be experienced every single moment of every day. That is not fleeting.

I will finish this by saying….You are handsome, loving, intelligent, young men who have so much to offer the world. Many people are blessed by you…more than you will ever know.   I feel so daunted by the task of getting you ready to face the world…but mostly I feel honored. Honored to be your mom.  Honored to have been a part of “creating” you with my own body.. ( inside joke..hehe). I have not taken this responsibility lightly of being the first woman you have loved or expressed or given your heart too. I take it very seriously and I want you to know how much I cherish that gift that you gave me. Please don’t give another piece of your heart away to someone who doesn’t value you. I know how precious that gift is….it makes me want to love, hug & squeeze you every minute of everyday…but I won’t because that might be weird for you. hehe.  Please know that I am going to let you make these mistakes…..because I respect you. I trust you and I know you will survive.  But just know that you will always have a piece of my heart with you and to at least value & protect that one piece that I leave with you-> so that you may see yourself a bit the way that I see you. Someone worthy of love and greatness.

Love always,

Mom.

 

 

 


Little Stitches

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Well I joined Needle & thread society in 2013 ( I think) and I stuck with it for 18 months or so? I can’t remember how long it lasted. Each month we learned new stitches and we got some little  embroidery patterns. The first phase of the classes we just had little practice pieces that we didn’t do anything with…it was all about introducing us to new needles, threads, and stitching.

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Then we all decided we wanted to have something to show for our class. So the next series we worked on a sampler….which I do have finished..and I absolutely love. But I have not yet framed. I am trying to decide on how I want to finish it. I really think I am going to have it framed professionally. I may take it in next week if I remember. It took lots of time & detail….lots of learning..but I thoroughly enjoyed the process.

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So then we decided to take a break from those projects and we are now working on Bird dance by Sue Spargo. Seriously..I am trying to catch up on my birds…but each one of those takes longer than one would think. I thought I could whip them out  without a problem….each one takes me about 4 days. So much goes into the process. How Sue gets all done that she gets done?? I Have no clue because I am pretty productive.

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So I decided I wasn’t going to let all of those fabulous designs I have been storing from a years worth of Needle & thread society to go to waste….I chose 54 of my favorite images..traced them onto scraps of background fabrics..basted them onto batting…and spent all of December working on them as a Tv watching project. I had a few netflix marathons. :)  I have had the little stitcheries finished for a few weeks. I just had to decide how  I was going to set them. I decided on a 9 patch making the embroideries into snow ball blocks. I used 2 jelly rolls that I have been HOARDING for years.

 

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Do you remember 2 moda lines called “Simplicty” and “Aviary”…yes it pained me to use them….but I am glad I did. They look so beautiful.  I have a problem with using my “Lines” of fabrics…so that is my challenge this year. I must use them…..as painful as it is. LOL. why buy it if I am not going to use it? I have no idea..I have to let go of such tendencies. It’s unhealthy.

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I LOVE all colors…and usually if I am attracted to a quilt it will be a big, bold, heavy textured pattern ect. However….my second favorite would be a sweet, romantic, pastel…..the fabrics I tend to hoard are in those two genres. anything in between I don’t feel pained to use…but my pastels & brights…I find hard to let go of…but I love the finished products.

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I quilted roses in each 9 patch, a feather to frame it all in..and stippled around the embroideries. Pretty happy with the finish….

Can’t wait to show the ladies. :)

I hope you all have a wonderful weekend!

Charisma

 


Moda’s Modern Building Blocks

So I saw this quilt and I had to jump on the blog train. It’s funny how a quilt can sweep through the blogosphere and capture all of us…I think the first one that I really participated in was “SWOON” Don’t we all love swoon? It comes in tides and we get swept in…..so much fun!

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Well I had a variety of solids and thought I could make this quilt. So I ordered my pattern from the Fat Quarter Shop and had fun. I didn’t particularly stick to all of the colors that the pattern suggested….I just used what I had. I didn’t have red…so I substituted the red with polka dots. :)  Can I just say how much I love a good polka dot? Seriously. I love them. I bought this fabric from a quilt shop in Atlanta….and I am not a pre-washer. I have NEVER had a problem buying from quilt shops…however, this fabric bleeds…I found out the hard way. GRRRR. I eliminated all of the browns in my quilt and added purple..which I think the original didn’t have. I seriously love a good sunny yellow…..I had no sunny solid yellow pieces. So I just used the mustard color I had on hand…..it was a sad day. LOL I think it all worked out well. I really was trying not to use any more patterned fabrics than I had too. That was difficult for me. Always have to challenge myself.

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Anywho…..I was so excited to make all of these blocks. I was doing really well with all of my points…feeling pretty proud…..and then I had a few of my small blocks with tons of seems not come out right….I read that a few others were having some difficulties as well. But I can’t figure out if it is my seam allowance or what? I have not adjusted to my *new* machine..I say it like that because it’s a year & half old.  I am taking a scant seam mostly and I need to do a full  quarter inch seam. So it has imperfections…but there is one block that is so off…terribly off. Embarrassingly off. I left it in….so I won’t point it out…. but I just want all of you who think your stuff isn’t perfect enough….I have that problem too. I thought It wouldn’t bother me ….but now I wish I had made a new block. I also had a *design opportunity* with one of the main huge blocks…I set the block wrong…but I actually liked the block it made so I kept it the way it was….a Happy accident. So it’s perfectly imperfect.

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From the beginning of my piecing process I knew I was going to quilt it with straight lines. 1 layer of batting. I wanted it to look very modern. There has been discussion in blog lad of whether this is really a “modern” quilt. I think “modern” can be defined by its owner or maker or designer. There are traditional elements ..of course the blocks. But the use of solid fabrics….the varied sizes of blocks….& I topped it off with modern quilting. So mine is indeed modern. I pinned this on Wednesday night before heading to pottery class. I thought for sure it would be a quick quilt I could work on when I got back from class. I am usually up to the wee hours of the morning….and I need something that I don’t need to think about. ( that’s why I only work on my own late at night…to many mistakes can be made when my brain is shut down). Well on my long drive to pottery class…..I had this great idea to quilt the main block with horizontal lines. Because I quilted vertical lines in the rest.

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Then on my way back home from pottery class I decided to toss the idea of horizontal lines and custom quilt that HUGE block..because of the 4 corners of the block. I knew, I could quilt in a block in each of those corners…and I chose a block that was in the quilt. There is a few variations of the block. Then I had to make sure all of the rest of the fillers were different to really make them stand out.   I had suddenly wished I had used two layers of batting. **Sigh** what was going to be my simple project ended up being a bit more detailed..took a bunch of time…and I am glad for it. I love the finish.

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Doesn’t that star just shine?

IMG_0933Pretty much in love!

So I am glad I hopped on building blocks! pretty fun and kept my interest…which is kind of difficult for a pattern to do. :) Then it kept me awake all hours of the night because I just had to see it finished.

I kind of *heart* those projects. It makes my creative side take over.

Thanks so much for following! I appreciate it!

Blessings

Charisma

 

 


Sweet Posies for a Sweet Lady

Linda sent this sweet-sweet quilt. I love the calming colors the sweet posies and the comforting feel of it all. It has a minky backing that carries that feeling all the way through as well.

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Linda is a great piecer and she always makes beautiful projects. She is very sweet. She made this for her mom who is elderly and likes to cuddle a lap quilt. I can’t think of a better reason to make a quilt.

 

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I wanted to bring special designs to those backgrounds..so I matched the double flower posie, leaves & loops. Kind of whimsy & sweet. Fun designs. I framed it all in with a feather.

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Look at the back:

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Loving it!

Thanks Linda! You are always so nice! I know your mom will love this beauty. I loved quilting it…but must admit it was hard to send back. :)

blessings

Charisma