Thursday, April 28, 2016

Perfect or Finished, That is the Question

The last few weeks I have been working on a quilt for our upstairs guestroom.  For those that know me well, I am taking a different course on this quilt. I am finishing it before going to the next one! (I give you my permission to go ahead and laugh!)
My new guest room quilt, finished, done, completed!! Yahoo!

My next quilt is partially done and in-waiting and has been for a long while, but I got stuck. I wasn't sure how I wanted to quilt it. What is now clear to me is that I'm like a beginning quilter in many ways, going from hand quilting or tied comforters to machine quilting. Like everything in my life, I'd like to be an expert without taking the time to learn and practice, to be good at something instantly! It does sound nice, right?

I am finding that I am not alone! Many quilters are good at piecing or quilting but not both and hire out what they aren't good at. I want to master it all and take pride in completing a quilt start to finish! My mother died years ago and she preferred quilting instead of piecing and we made the perfect team as she would be too happy to finish my quilts. She was an expert quilter but started failing physically before she finished her last and most beautiful quilt and I am "in training" to not just finish her quilt but the many others that I have started and not completed.

Getting smarter, I have realized that some of my quilts will need to be machine-quilted or leave them for my daughters to complete, but the real problem is not just completing them but wanting to do them as beautifully as my mother would have! Perfectionism is indeed a terrible burden!

I have bought a little sign that hangs near my work table that reads, "Finished is better than perfect" and took the plunge--to teach myself how to machine quilt.  It is not as easy as it looks for someone that isn't a natural machinist and sadly a long-arm quilting machine isn't in my budget. I have seen what some quilters have produced on a simple straight-stitch basic machine and if they can do it, why can't I?

I started my task to become an expert machinist by first doing my piecework by machine. Doing simple patchwork duvet covers, I then pieced some quilt tops and now I am moving on to machine quilting using Quilt-as-You-Go" techniques. This is simply quilting a quilt in pieces and then joining pieces together to make them bed-sized. I have learned through sewing hundreds of pincushions and fleece socks that to master skills, it simply takes patience, perseverance and practice, practice, practice! I am, after all, a perfectionist, but quite an imperfect one!

I am inspired by quilts on Pinterest or at quilt shows and know thatI want mine to look as good as their's,  BUT I just don't seem to have what most good machine sewers have, though I have seen improvement with practice. It was just the same at learning piano, I played only the first few lines of every song! Last week, however, I found a video on Pinterest.  It was a special instruction class for people like me, titled Three Things Quilters Should Stop Doing by Angela Walters.  It was a class on appreciating yourself and your own work and some firm and simple directions for quilters like me who don't value themselves or their work IF it is not perfect!

Each quilt has a purpose, she said. This made sense to me, as I have learned that each person does as well. So whether our quilt is to be a gift or simply an exercise to learn,  it is helpful to identify it's purpose. I thought to myself, "so loosen up Jane girl, not all quilts are meant to be ribbon winners at quilt shows!" They still have value and didn't I decide to make this quilt to be a utilitarian one to save the wear and tear on my special hand-made quilt?!  Angela also pointed out that favorite quilts are often not favorites because they are perfect.

It was like someone took a hammer and opened up my heart and brain with a brand new thought!! I immediately realized that though I was making a utilitarian quilt, I could simply focus on learning a new skill or two with each quilt.  My guest bed quilt was made to practice stitch-in-the-ditch quilting. My guests will be equally as warm using a quilt with less and not more stitching! The other purpose of this quilt was to experiment on quilting the top and batting together and then tying it to a whole- piece backing. I stopped my quest for perfection and gave myself permission to make a simple and functional, but pretty quilted comforter. How many "labors of love" turn into a "labors of drudge" for me as I forget their purpose. I am learning and practicing a few new skills with each one!

I also learned to NOT focus on and announce my mistakes to others. Imperfections are glaring only to me, but not to others! I need to allow myself to have beginner's quilts and quit picking at them until I create holes in them! I will instead work to make each quilt will be a bit better than the last!

This instruction video also taught me that nothing has to be perfect in order to be loved. "Duh!!"  Just look at myself!  I have a very dear husband and if that isn't proof enough, I don't know what is! I am imperfect and loved all the same and so are my creations that my children love merely by the fact that I made them. My children themselves are testimony to that fact...they are loved because they are uniquely mine ...and so my quilts will be as well.

Can you find three errors. I couldn't until Holly pointed them out to me!

A good lesson: Holly accepting  her life and her three mistakes in her quilt.!
At our local quilt quilt show, I was drawn to a very bright and fun scrap quilt and then saw my friend standing next to it.  As I complemented her on her quilt, I told her that I was laboriously learning to machine quilt and told her what I had learned about "letting go of the goal of perfection" and finishing my quilts. She smiled and said she had learned the same on this quilt and then generously pointed out her three mistakes and laughed as she added, "they are not small ones either"and yet I never would have noticed them!  She said that her quilt reflected her life, which was in chaos and just as she accepted the state of her life, she accepted the imperfections in her quilt. She said she couldn't be bothered to replace imperfect blocks and simply patched them in one way or another and went on to finish her piece and then she took it in to have it professionally quilted by someone with a long-arm quilting machine. She showed the professional quilter her errors and simply said, "Do the best you can despite them". My friend is moving on with her life and not allowing herself "to get stuck", and she moved to complete her quilt in the same fashion. I loved her quilt and her as well! I also realized that I may not reach perfection in my quilts ever, but they are each extensions of myself, to be loved, valued and respected for their own worth. Each will serve a purpose.

I then remembered reading that expert Amish quilters often add a block that is "off" either in color or design as a reminder that only God is perfect and dares to be a perfectionist, but I smile when I think of his creations; perhaps God, himself isn't a perfectionist either?!

Wednesday, April 13, 2016

A Quiet Time, a Welcome Change!

It has been a quiet time at Little House, a most welcome change! No parties or gatherings and with the help of my two hour monthly house cleaners' help, there is peace and order once again, at least for a short time. It is obvious that there is industry waiting to come back out, temporarily stored in stacks all over my dining room, where sewing, not dining, happens!

A quilt-as-you-go quilt. Two seams and binding and it will be done!
I am continuing to do the several-ring modus operandi that I ascribed to some time ago.  A bit of progress on various projects: my first machine quilt waiting for the last two seams and binding to be completed along with my latest machine-quilted combination quilt/comforter for our guest bedroom waiting to be laid out for tying; my perpetual fleece sock production; as well as a similar on-going pincushion and craft production for my fall and winter sales.
A quilt-as-you-go quilted top,waiting for another batting and backing.
Sit with nothing to do?...Think again! There are fleece socks to be sewn!!
And projects to be finished for sale in the fall!
Flower pot pincushions in bag waiting to be finished, & cat nip mice to sew.

I take time to read my latest kindle books, and per my modus operandi,  never just one at a time. I am currently reading The Freemasons, History of the World's Most Powerful Secret Society by Jasper Ridley to better understand some of my ancestors and their thinking, though it really seems to be more about the history of clashes of beliefs throughout the ages and how intolerant different groups were of each other. Horrible tortures were all done in defense of their beliefs: disemboweling, lopping-off of hands and body parts and stretching racks to eliminate evil thinking--really? But watching the 2016 election process on TV, why am I surprised?

Another book seemed to be more entertaining. What I thought was to be a rather light-hearted novel regarding a couple going through a mid-life crisis after their children leave home, turned into a very involved twisted plot about the husband's new girlfriend stalking the entire family and plotting a series of mysterious revenges for past secrets. What was it about the title that left me to believe it would be a sweet-sort-of-book at all? Don't miss The Betrayal, A Gripping Novel of Psychological Suspense by Laura Elliot!

I have also taken on the reading of a rather massive encyclopedia sort-of-book about Chinese medicine applied to nutrition, Healing with Whole Foods by Paul Pitchford. The yin and the yang in the world of food is a very interesting concept. Achieving balance in one's body by using various foods, is actually a fascinating read, as it isn't about using our American style of balancing meals using the food pyramid at all, though I remain hopeful that it is about keeping the sweet as well as the sour in my diet? I like the idea that extremes are NOT the goal of any nutritious diet, though sprouts aren't my idea of being the sort of sweet to replace pies and cookies!?

It is a slow and relaxing time, not unlike watching grass greening up in spring, which is also happening here in Vermont, though temporarily paused when the green turned to white, getting more snow than we had all winter!! Of course winter isn't ready to leave just as we were beginning to throw open our windows for fresh air as well as for the purpose of listening to the peepers singing to us at night! I think they have tucked back into hibernation until it warms again, which hopefully won't be long now!

Our local Maple Leaf Quilt Show was this last weekend in Rutland, Vermont. It is only held now every two years. Their money-making "Consignment Sale" is one of my favorite events. Quilters thin out their sewing rooms and sell off whatever they don't feel like keeping and great buys are abundant! Never mind that I should be hanging a sale sign outside  my house and inviting people in to browse and shop my sewing rooms that are bursting at the seams with all sorts of sewing stuffs that I think will take three lifetimes to use! Instead I am out shopping for more?

Pinned and ready for tying: a machine- quilted top with batting and backing.
Meanwhile, my quilted quilt top is laid out with its backing as well as another layer of batting to prepare it for tying. I am trying a new style of Quilt-as-You-Go Quilting with using a whole-piece backing. If this method works, I am will be doing another quilt for my girlfriend in this same manner. Nothing like a systematic trial-and error method of learning!
Simple 9 patch/9 patch top and backing, waiting for the best quilting method.

It is nice to be pressure-free with no imminent deadlines approaching, though what gets done now will prevent the angst of last minute pressures before my sales in the fall. Peace and quiet is a welcome change and I am taking a moment to enjoy it!

Sunday, March 27, 2016

Memories Made

How little it takes to make good memories...and so I reflect on our Easter Egg dying party...some pizza, a gathering of family, hard boiled eggs, some egg dying kits, and a few treats in Easter bags, and a party was
Nice green!
You are going to do what?
Mmmm? Getting good!!
...another technique--shrink wraps?! Really?
Whoops...the eggs are too big for these wraps!!
Yet another green?!
You know what they say about famous minds think alike?...another green egg!!
Yet another version of green, the IN color this year with a bit of marbleizing!
Kacy is very serious about his egg art!
And this is the work of our serious egg artist!
And it isn't a one-sided work of art!
Cassie, left to hang out in the corner by herself?
...but not forgotten...with a little hug here and there!
The start of Kacy's photo gallery of his and Sarah Kate's egg art!
Egg Art photo by Kacy, so he can eat them this year instead of saving them!
Too beautiful to crack and eat, for sure...Easter eggs by Kacy and Sarah Kate!
Another art photo by Kacy of his and Sarah Kate's egg art!
Kacy's photo of his  Humpty Dumpty egg art!!
 We hope you enjoyed your Easter/ Passover/ Spring celebration as much as we did!!

Friday, March 25, 2016

More Lenten Lessons as Easter Draws Near

My last Lenten tribulation, machine quilting top and batting, a job now done!
Lenten lessons keep coming! I am now learning how annoying people can be when they wish to be kind and helpful! It is true! My husband has recently been temporarily retired and I find he is often "too kind", which can be very dear but sometimes annoying!? Now God seems to have flipped the mirror to its magnified side and, once again, there I am, larger than life! Could it be that my Lenten promise to do an act of kindness each day is really an act of annoyance instead? Are my little self-sacrifices of kindnesses more about making me feel good, without considering what another person really needs? Am I sometimes feeding my own ego and perhaps getting in another's way, or giving them something that they don't want or aren't ready for?
Boiling too few eggs seems to have caused them to crack more?

I add cold water after boiling them to make them peel more easily.

Adding ice, I have heard assures that they will peel more easily!  It is true!

Batch #1 cooked & labeled. It is NOT good to mix raw eggs with cooked ones!
Sometimes kindnesses serves the doer more than the person being helped. Likely a person, in order to be really kind, needs to question "good for who and in what way"? When I took care of my mother, I learned that her increased dependency on me was not good for her self-respect and dignity.  What is most helpful isn't always doing for another but supporting them to do for themselves. This often doesn't mean "taking over", but, rather taking time to share in their journey and allowing them to share in your's.

I never will forget when I had my stroke November 2011. Being on the special protocol I was on, I was warned that permanent damage is most often done to patients by well-meaning medical staff that don't know or understand about the limits of this weird and different protocol.  With this in mind, I checked myself out of intensive care, and pushed to go directly home as soon as my vital signs were stable and my tests completed.

A good night's rest was in order, especially after being uncomfortable trying to sleep on a bed that was intentionally too hard, in case an emergency resuscitation should be necessary! It was "safer" to be at home, I figured, where no one would accidentally give me what might well be harmless for another patient and unintentionally kill me, as I had a long list of commonly used medications that would likely cause a violent and potentially deadly reaction. I went directly home though I couldn't ambulate safely as my entire left side was still mostly paralyzed, my core strength zapped and my balance almost non-existent.

Still it was good to be at home and as I went to sit on my computer desk chair to peck out a one-handed note to my friends about what had happened to me, my chair moved, and losing my balance, I missed my chair and fell to the floor. My husband soon discovered me lying on the floor. Not fully appreciating how dysfunctional I was, he inquired what I was doing there and I started laughing at the thought that he might be thinking I was purposely stretched out on the floor by choice!

I informed him that I missed my chair and fallen.  He of course was all too willing to try to pick me up but I refused his help. It wasn't that I wanted to continue to lay on the floor, but I didn't want him to injure himself with half of my body being dead weight.

I explained my dilemma, and told him that I was trying to figure out how to get up using a sturdy chair  nearby and with the use of only half of my body. With that, he did the kindest thing ever. He laid  down on the floor just on the other side of the doorway facing me and tried to figure out how to get himself up using only one side of his body.

We laughed as we tried to think of what to do. In fact I laughed so hard that I soon had another problem; I had wet my pants on top of it all, and this made us both laugh even harder!  Still my dearly beloved husband was there with me, and our laughing eroded all fear. I would get up when we both figured how I could do so without injuring him or myself. Sharing my limits was the kindest thing he could do and having him join my plight as to how I could help myself was as good as it got!

Dignity?...OK, there was none, but none was needed for I was with someone who understood and loved me enough to share my problem. I did manage to get up, though I don't remember now exactly how, but I do remember that it was enough that I had him there with me for encouragement.  I got better each day, and took my physical challenges one by one, until in time and with the help of out-patient rehab, I grew independent again. Fortunately everyday brought more and more progress and my recovery was nothing short of miraculous!  I have never forgotten that intimate moment when we were both laying on the floor laughing over my helplessness. I don't think that this is how rehab is usually done, but losing my fear was key! I felt that my recovery was then only a matter of time.

As I write this, I am reminded of reading Karen by Maria Killilea.  This is a true story of raising a child born with Cerebral Palsy in the days when such children were typically institutionalized. Written by her mother, Maria freely wrote of all the issues that she and her family faced in keeping Karen at home and raising her in the midst of their family. It is a story of great courage and ingenuity as there were no experts at that time to teach them how to do what their child needed. Supporting Karen to become as independent as possible took creativity, determination, perseverance and love. At one point Karen is so afraid of falling that her fears actually caused her muscles to become so tight, causing them to spasm.  Her mom decided that the only way forward was to help Karen get over the fear of falling by making "falling" a game. She put a mattress on the floor and had everyone fall on it, including Karen. By losing her fear of falling, Karen was then able to progress.

Once again, I see myself mirrored in my husband, who is so kind and supportive to me that he sometimes limits my ability to do for myself. I am learning that another's kindness, however well meaning, may not always consider what is best for another. Kindness of any sort does build a bridge to another's hear and along with honest and tactful communication  helps, though can initially offend someone who has gone out of their way to help. It is needed for the growth for all concerned. I see now that my acts of kindness aren't always what another needs or wants. It is my own lesson to be sure.

I have learned that doing simple acts of kindness isn't always so "simple".  They require consideration and communication as to whether or not such an act is helpful or not and I must admit, I often don't think as much as I should. Acts of kindness should be acts of love. Again lst Corinthians 13:4 on love teaches that love involves patience, mercy, forgiveness and must not be self-serving, arrogant or proud. Offense should not be taken, and often when that happens pride is perhaps the cause. Real acts of love are more difficult than meet the eye. A person must be ready to look at their self as well. "Sweetness" isn't always "sweet", just as apparent "kindness" may not be so "kind".

Lenten lessons and personal growth don't begin and end with Lent, but are year round and always humbling. "Simple, arbitrary and contrite" doesn't cut it!! Jesus's love for us as demonstrated by his passion, death and resurrection was anything but shallow. It was and remains commitment in the extreme, and so our commitments to being loving and kind with each other should reflect the same. Where there is real love there most often real sacrifice.

Clearly Lent is too short a season to properly prepare for the enormity of the messages of Good Friday and Easter. I am realizing again that God's love is unfathomable, and He has set an example for us all. Lent, I think is to remind us how human we are and how big indeed are the lessons that we need to learn to be better people. Even a lifetime is too brief to learn all that God's love teaches us. Lenten lessons are often humble reminders of how human and ungodly we are and that conversion of heart takes a lifetime! Being humbled isn't about making us feel bad, but rather, our humility fills us with the awe of God's love.  He loves us so much that He stretched out his arms as far as they would stretch and submitted to his crucifixion and death.  It is very hard for us to even imagine such a love!

A few different sorts of egg dyes to entertain the many artists dying our eggs!

A few little silly treats and a party is created!
New appreciation of His sacrifice makes me ready to celebrate my life with a renewed freshness. The celebration of Easter is coming and I prepare for our annual egg dying party and gathering of loved ones to celebrate Easter and spring. It takes only a little love, some hard-boiled eggs, some Easter egg dying kits, a few party favors (strictly optional), a pizza and a gathering of loved ones to make the season more special! I embrace various religious celebrations of this season as well.

While I write of  our Easter celebration, others celebrate Passover, and still others simply the coming of Spring. Gathering loved ones to share in your festivities, whatever they may be, adds to the joy of the seasons and it seems that these sorts of simple celebrations have become the very traditions that continue to unite our family. I wish you all a Happy Easter, Passover and Spring!!

Wednesday, March 16, 2016

Machine Quilting Basics

Not getting any younger, I have decided to apply my hand-quilting knowledge to machine quilting. I am having to remind myself that "Rome wasn't built in a day" and you know what they say about "old dogs learning new tricks".  My progress feels a bit like watching grass grow.  My learning is slow and methodical.

First came discovering ways to make my piecing work more accurate using tearing techniques as well as rotary cutting and using guide strips for more accurate and uniform blocks and learning to match seams and avoid thread nests.  I came from the days of old when only scissors were used and they had to be hidden to be sure that they weren't used to cut paper by my kids! (Warning some of these pictures are not new but review what I have learned regarding quilting basics.)
Torn and rotary cut strips and accurately pieced quilt blocks in process.
 Strips pinned ready to stitch to make 9 patch blocks.
Using sewing guides for more accurate piecing.

Again, use of guides to uniformly sew strips.

Pressed alternate strips to be cut using a rotary cutter.

Uniformly stitched 9 patch/ 9 patch quilt blocks.

My first attempt at machine quilting on my old Bernina machine was done using a walking foot with the special Stitch-in-the-Ditch attachment . This is used to move both the top and bottom layer of material with the batting inbetween uniformly. I quilted each block individually and then joined their tops and batting and then finished their back seams by hand (Quilt-as-You-Go Technique*). Despite much care being taken to make my seams as flat as possible on their backside, I was less than pleased with the results.  They didn't look like quilts I had seen in quilt shows!! I am now going to cover them with sashing strips sewed to the back by hand. Is Quilt-as-You-Go machine quilting actually time-saving? I am not sure!
A Stitch-in-the-Ditch quilting foot. The bar in the middle follows the seam.

Hand-sewn seams made for crooked machine quilting done on the back side.

It wasn't my hand-sewn seams that caused the eyesores but rather the machine quilting over these seams. It was very hard to perfectly align front and back seams, so machine quilting them on the front side magnified this mismatch on the back.

Quilt #2--A memory quilt: personal fabrics, clothes and quilt blocks.
My next quilt (number two) is basically the same pieced pattern, but instead of quilting it block by block and then joining them, I decided I would sew the blocks into rows to then machine quilt them. I still ponder how to improve joining the rows in a way that won't involve having to cover my seams on the backside. I am also considering different quilting patterns that won't require quilting on or near the back hand-sewn seams.

My friend's mother's hand-embroidered quilt blocks--too precious to NOT use.

Hand-made baby clothes to be "hung on the clothes line" on back (quilt #2)
On this same quilt (number two) I wanted to do a special hand appliqued dedication. This is a scrap quilt top made from my friend's mother's materials.  With the box of these materials came  tiny baby clothes my mother's friend had made for her girls as well as precious hand-embroidered quilt blocks. I will applique "a clothes line with these specially made clothes and little quilt hanging on the line" to the back and will embroider a dedication to her mother.  I thought this perfect as my friend's mother was a woman that loved washing clothes and hanging them on the line.  She never used a clothes dryer and loved to iron ALL of their clothes even as she aged.  She was indeed a special mother that loved taking care of her family in domestic ways that have been lost in today's world!! Sadly, my creative ideas aren't equally matched to my primitive abilities in the world of machine quilting. This project has grown bigger, and so I have postponed its completion to allow my skills to catch up. My number three quilt will give me more practice so my friend's quilt will turn out better after a bit more practice, or at least that is my plan!

Quilt #3: More practice using Stitch-in-the-Ditch machine quilting.

Quilt #3: Quilting done through pieced edging and batting only.
Quilt number three is a quickly constructed quilt top using a different but equally as simple straight-lined- pieced top whose blocks are joined using "sashing" strips.  I wanted it to be a utility, everyday sort of quilt/comforter for our guest bedroom.  I wanted it to be extra puffy like a comforter but with the texture of quilting as well.  My solution for easier construction and quilting of a large double bed-sized quilt spread with high loft batting on my old basic Bernina was to machine quilt the top with a thin cotton batting and add a polyfill batting and backing to be tied, like I would in making a comforter. I am hoping that it will have a plump, soft comforter look with the look and texture of a true quilt as well. Being the only bedding besides sheets, the extra warmth will be welcome in our chilly or cold Vermont weather.

This third quilt will give me more practice to perfect Stitch-in-the- Ditch style machine quilting, using Quilt-as-You-Go technique similar to what I would use on quilt number two, quilting it in strips. I am hoping that the joining of the strips will go more smoothly as I am not having to quilt through the backing too. The backing will be one whole piece, a technique that would perhaps work better on quilt number two as well. Whoever said quilting doesn't involve brains is quite mistaken and I am working at sharpening my brain and sweeping out any cobwebs from early dementia as I work out how to construct these quilts!
Quilt #3: Machine quilting using Stitch-in-the-Ditch quilting walking foot.

Batting is yet another consideration.  On quilt number three, I am using a low loft cotton batting, ready for quilting (no pre-shrinking needed), and so far it is quilting easily, but is not producing the amount of "puff" texture that I would like.  I did note that there is a thicker cotton pellon batting that would be easy to work with, but would require pre-washing, or so I have been lead to believe. Quilt number two is going to a friend in California. Adding a back and then appliqueing my dedication design on the back, may mean the thin batting will be more than adequate weight and the pellon batting perhaps too heavy for such a warm climate? I will finish quilt number three to see how the quilting looks as well as being sure that the combination of quilting and tying works before I make a final decision as to how I finish quilt number two.

I do remember my other comforters and quilting experience from years ago. I sewed a beautiful comforter for my mother.  We decided that corduroys were especially rich in colors and would be beautiful all sewn together in a very simple multi-colored square patchwork.  It was indeed beautiful, but I tied it with a fluffy high loft batting with a corduroy backing as well.  It made for a sort of "sleigh-bundling quilt", guaranteed to keep you warm in an electrical storm with the furnace out, if not riding for hours in a sleigh on a cold winter day! Fortunately my mother used it on an an extra day bed that was only used by myself once. Its weight should have come with suffocation warnings, but was a definate cure for Restless Leg Syndrome!

The jury is still out as to which machine quilting techniques will work best for quilt number two, except that it will be done in strips and quilted in a Quilt-as-You-Go* fashion.  I am noting that machine quilting, while faster than hand-quilting, is still a lot of work!!  And all of this was to facilitate finishing all my unfinished quilts I have started!! Did I mention (yet again) that I am not getting any younger? My three learning quilts have now been added to the list of quilts to complete!! Carpal tunnel and a painful trigger finger have been added to the equation. This sport of quilting is NOT for sissies!!

(*Quilt-As-You-Go is a technique where you quilt a quilt either block by block or in sections that are then joined by stitching the top seam and batting and then folding under the top seam  which is then sewn by hand using an invisible whip-stitch. It is used as a way of more easily creating smaller portions of the quilt at a time and then stitching them together to make large bed-sized quilts.)

On The Side:  Sewing fleece socks goes on throughout the year so that my inventory of three hundred pairs of socks will be ready for my shows late fall and pre-Christmas season. They help support my material addiction habits!! There is no rest for the wicked...and yet I no idle hands or mind to be wicked now!

Sewing fleece socks--during my breaks from machine quilting.
Stitched one sock at a time, I will sew 100+ pairs to add to my sock inventory.
Pre-cut socks ready for sewing. No idle hands allowed at Little House!