Tuesday, December 30, 2008


The big day is over ~ it was hectic to say the least ~ but fun! I thought I would post some more pictures of our decorations ~ the two Santa's on the left of the shelf are hand carved by Mark Glandon ~ I did shows with him years ago and people would line up at the door an hour early to get in there and clean off his shelves in short order. I was lucky enough to purchase a couple before the crowds ascended on him ~ and since I only do two shows a year now, we have not crossed paths in a long time.

This antique turkey feather tree was a bargain purchase from a local flea market many years ago. The Santa on top is old as well as the one in the cupboard directly to the left. The others are reproductions ~ the little glittery houses and the white trees are antique pieces that were all in a box at an auction! Some of these bargains help offset the things that weren't so well priced ~ it all evens out along the way!

The Ligonier sheep still adorns the table ~ on the bread rising board below are pomegranates and boxwood. In the cupboard in the background are some more vintage Santas that we've collected.
Last Tuesday, the friendship bread starter was ready to bake so I baked with a vengeance!! Instead of giving away the starters, I made bread out of each one ~ 8 mini loaves and 6 big ones ~ lots to share with family and friends! The last remaining starter went into the freezer for later in the winter ~ in the last months, I've baked a ton of this bread and thought I needed a break ~ you have to make a commitment to that starter that lasts for 10 days and it goes on and on ~ but it's so good!
These mohair bears came to life, so to speak, on Christmas day ~ after breakfast at my son's, I came home and made these two bears in an hour and a half to have wrapped and under the tree for granddaughters, Jordyn and Luci!! Organization ~ I've just got to get on top of it!! Today, I actually have two more to make and get in the Seattle package. They are at my daugher-in-law's parents for the holidays, so their package arrives after the first of the year ~ I tell them it's something for them to look forward to!!!

On Christmas day, there were about 23 people here all day and a few stragglers who stopped by to see grandson, Nick and great grand-daughter, Blakleigh (pronounced with a long a). There were 19 of our kids and grandkids, my former brother-in-law and sister-in-law (I love to keep everyone close and they are my kids aunt and uncle), a friend of the kids whose mom was real sick and she was alone, another friend of the kids that spends every Christmas with us (Tad thinks he's his cousin!) and on it goes!! We ate, drank and were merry from 2 p.m. till 10:30 at night!! And the only casualty of the day, was a kid's head made a huge dent in a wall in the exercise room ~ the good news is that he didn't get knocked out and Sonny can fix the wall!!

Tonite Luke and Luci are staying all night - their parents have had so much company over the holiday, that I thought they could use a break and the kids haven't stayed over in a long time. I'm using the left over turkey to make turkey strata ~ Luci will like it ~ she says I make 'gooey' food ~ that's short for fattening!! I'm taking Tad to the doctor this afternoon ~ he's getting a bad cold and we need to nip that in the bud before the coming holiday ~ and I need him to be healthy so we can go about our New Years celebration!! We were going to Kelley's Island for New Years ~ our friends who invited us are disappointed ~ but weather is a huge concern ~ if the lake would freeze overnight, we would be stuck there if the ferry can't run ~ and that wouldn't be a good thing!!

So if I don't post until we return, HAPPY NEW YEAR to all ~ a healthy, happy and prosperous New Year wish from Alice & Sonny, here in Ohio!

Thursday, December 25, 2008



Tuesday, December 23, 2008


I thought maybe you would like to see some of our Christmas decorations ~ these are in our kitchen/keeping room. The television is in this reproduction cupboard to the right of the fireplace ~ this is where we sit in the evening and most often eat our supper and watch the news.

When they say the kitchen is the heart of the home, it seems to be so here anyway! Everyone gathers here to eat and visit ~ it's hard to get people to sit in the living room even though it's a very comfortable spot itself. They like to hang around the island and sit at the tables and in the area in front of the fireplace. Saturday night, we had one of the dinners that was auctioned off for our Homebuilders charity auction ~ and eight of us hung around the kitchen all evening ~ I think they didn't want to be far from the food!! We had lots of nibblies but they loved the grilled shrimp (you know who did that!), water chestnuts wrapped in bacon and a garlic-rubbed tenderloin with a sauteed and broiled mushroom dish ~ we wined and dined them all in the name of charity ~ an excuse to have a party!!!!

I hauled this old jelly cupboard with a screened door home after one of my antiquing forays and the Mr. wondered why I thought it was so attractive! I just loved this piece ~ it had no paint or varnish and is pretty rugged but I've never regretted the purchase. It houses my tea things ~ teapots, and those all-in-one individual teapot and cup combination ~ and a variety of other pottery pieces.

Mr. Kitty absolutely loves this tree that sits on the dry sink. Last night while we were watching TV, I heard a faint ringing bell ~ guess who was hiding between the tree and the wall just having a ball swatting at the ornaments!! He's very entertaining but driving me crazy with all the Christmas stuff sitting around!

We have used this Rumford style fireplace to cook in occasionally ~ not me of course ~ but Sonny is pretty skilled at such stuff! We searched and searched for the crane that holds the pots before we built it ~ that kind of thing is easier to come by now than 15 years ago ~ when we asked for something like this, it was like we were from outer space ~ reproduction houses are more popular now so there are a lot more sources out there!

And the handmade cat is for a customer who has bought one every year for 15 or 16 years for her daughter-in-law. Many of them are much smaller than this ~ Sally orders it in November or so and I get inspired the week before Christmas and try to come up with something she doesn't have. Many times, the Christmas cat has been delivered on Christmas Eve just before their gathering! I'm really going to get a handle on this organization thing before I leave this planet!!! Anyway, she's made from gray wool and a hand-dyed wool dress ~ antique buttons for earrings ~ embroidered face ~ antique tintype pin for a brooch ~ and a little hand-crocheted purse. I hope Tinker likes her ~ she's not as dainty as many of the others ~ the cat, not Tinker!! I'll let you know how it goes!

It's been along day ~ I just realized it's after 2 in the morning!! Yikes and good night!!

Monday, December 22, 2008


It arrived!! My Secret Santa box from Annette Myers ~ thank you, Annette! Several pieces of wool, candles, coffee to drink while I hook and a little snowman ornament all in a cute wooden crate!! And it was wrapped ever so well ~ that package was not going to pop open during shipping!!!

It seems that I cannot post to either Wool Snippets site ~ I would love to post a picture and thank you on there ~ but alas, I cannot! Maybe some kind soul will post on there for me that I received Annette's package and that I appreciate it very much!

Happy Holidays to you all ~

Friday, December 19, 2008


The decorating is finally done ~ made a little harder because Mr. Kitty wanted to rest right in the middle of the decorating stuff!! We had 3 couples in Wednesday evening and I finally finished about noon ~ it does look kind of pretty around here ~ I'll get some pix taken and post!

My Mr. is so domesticated!! Tuesday night he made 4 batches of raspberry and blackberry jam to give for Christmas presents!! We had a really good crop of raspberries ~ we don't get a lot of sun in this woodsy gravel pit we call home ~ so getting a good crop of anything is a miracle!! The black ones grow wild right at the edge of the yard and the red ones, Sonny planted at the edge of the drive ~ so every day this summer, he would pick and freeze, pick and freeze and lo and behold there were enough for him to work his magic!!! He also dug up horseradish root and ground that in the Cuisinart (I don't think it will ever smell the same!) and put that in jars to give away!! I don't do any of that stuff ~ and I'm so glad he does!

Last night Miss Luci was here~ her dad (my son), Teddy was working on my printer. I had a paper jam the other night and unhooked everything to get this scrunched up paper out of it and then it wouldn't work anymore!!! Long story but he got it going for me ~ so the family had a little supper with us ~ and Miss Luci posed with Santa for her photo op!! It was a fun evening!

Yesterday, we drove to Amish country to buy one last toy box for the youngest grandson, Logan!~ they all have gotten them when they're about 5 years old. These kids are so much harder to buy for as they get older! We met my former sister-in-law, Gwen, while we in the area and she took us to lunch ~ that was really nice! We always have fun with her ~ she always wears a hat ~ yesterday it was a leopard print cowboy hat ~ needless to say, she got quite a few looks!!!!

Today we're going to Social Security and the old guy is applying for Medicare!! We know how to have fun, don't we??!! Actually, it will be so much cheaper than our own insurance, that it will be a blessing!!! I know they will think he's too young to be there!!!!!!!!!!!

Have a fun weekend ~ there's not much time left to get our Christmas stuff done!!!!

Tuesday, December 16, 2008


This wool applique tree pillow is one of the things that was in the Secret Santa package that I sent off the other day ~ Rita already received and opened it ~ with my blessing ~ I wanted her to be able to use her presents for the holidays! Since rug hooking became my art of choice, I haven't made the things that I sold at shows for years ~ it was kind of nice to see what I could whip up! This is wool felt adorned with rusty bells ~ you know, to put a little jingle in Rita's Christmas ~ and she was very complimentary!

This old cat pillow is one I've had a long time ~ he came all faded and worn from an auction I'm sure ~ they were printed and you cut out, sew and stuff them ~ well, he'd been cut out, sewn and stuffed long ago!!

I'm sure when this worn old fellow started out, he looked just like the guy in the next frame ~ no doubt that's what drew me to buy that pattern in the first place ~ there's something very appealing about both of them, don't you think??

And for lots of years, this guy was down in the depths of my workroom, still in his flat little package ~ waiting for this seamstress to give him life!! When I was putting order to that basement storage area, I found him in the bottom of a box ~ he got moved over into the hooking studio/sewing room and waited a while longer and finally, one day this weekend ~ the guy got cut out, sewn and stuffed into life!! He's a handsome cat, isn't he? I put him in a chair down there and sometimes out of the corner of my eye, I thought it was Mr. Kitty sitting and staring at me!!!! As I've mentioned before, I need a keeper!!

One of the things that I also got done this weekend, was to label those two niece's rugs and get them ready to mail. The rabbit rug for Isabella couldn't be shipped without something in there for big sister Ariana ~ so I made this bear this morning!! In my past craft life, I made mohair bears so there is a nice stock of those materials in my 'warehouse'! I had to dig thru old patterns to find this one that I used to make antique quilt bears ~ it was perfect to make a quickie gift! German string mohair, glass eyes and a little embroidered nose and in about an hour, it was finished!!

And on the back ~ a label ~ a label that came from my mother's sewing things and I still had that little package squirreled away in my sewing drawers, waiting to find the perfect project to attach it to!! This one was it ~ my mom was Grandma to Ariana's daddy and he has fond memories of her ~ so I thought this little label would mean a lot to him, too. Yes, her name was Alice!
Last but not least, this is a rug I'm working on for a friend ~ a commission, no less!! Melody asked me to do a Leicester sheep for her last year ~ they travel to Ireland a lot and like me, she loves the fields with sheep everywhere you look ~ I hooked the hilly fields the same way I did the field border in my England Memory rug with the colors of canola and heather and rolling green moors. I showed it to her yesterday and it seems she really like it! So stay tuned ~ it will be done shortly!!
I hope you all are having a productive week ~ and are also able to enjoy the festivities of the season! I'm up to my ears in office work ~ hooking, sewing and creating take a toll on the real responsibilities of life ~ guess I'll go be responsible now!! Ta Ta !

Friday, December 12, 2008


This really has been a busy week ~ it's Friday already!! Monday was my friend, Carol's annual Christmas tea! I should have gotten there a bit early to get pix of all her decorating ~ it's always beautiful and always has a theme. This year was the Dove of Peace as you can see in her table setting. Carol and her twin sister, Nancy, are masters at tablescapes and staging a room ~ her home is an old farmhouse that's been in the family for generations and Carol has put that house thru some wild transformations!! It used to be ultra-modern, then extremely primitive and now it's kind of shabby chic/French country. They always put together an interesting array of guests ~ old friends, new friends ~ people who are so glad to be together!

Monday was also my daughter-in-law, Miki's, birthday so I had them for dinner. I put a nice pork loin in the over at 5 p.m. and when I checked it at 6:15, the oven was at a nice warm temperature of 250 degrees!!!!! No wonder those muffins last week turned out so crummy ~ my oven was on the fritz!!! Sonny put the roast on the grill and we finally had the Birthday dinner ~ better late than never!

Yesterday was a crazy day ~ range repairman at 8 a.m., took Tad for routine bloodwork at 8:30 a.m., an 11 a.m. meeting to disperse our auction funds to needy families (and believe me there were lots ~ we were so glad to be able to help so many), a drop off at Toy Time, the Hospice thrift store, another stop to pick up something from DIL, Cheryl's office, a 2 p.m. nail appointment (compliments of DIL Miki who owns the salon ~ thank goodness!!), return a pair of jeans, stop at the local Art Center to see the Holiday Fair (someone made such creative hand knit and recycled sweater purses!), drop grandson Luke at jujitsu class and get home in time to put on a new face and go to our friends home for what turned out to be a dinner party! at 5:30. It was a great day of giving and receiving but this kid was pooped by the time we got home at 10 last night!!

Hopefully, the Christmas decorations find their way upstairs this weekend and some elf gets them in their proper places!! I cut boxwood the other day in the rain and spread it out in the garage to dry so it's ready to place! Tonite is Miss Luci's 6th birthday ~ we're going there for dinner ~ no wonder I look like I do !~ our whole world revolves around food!! Okay ~ I'm off!! Have a good day ~

Monday, December 8, 2008


Last week, Sonny was getting in lots of shop time and these are two of the stands and frames that he finished. The one that is entirely walnut is absolutely beautiful, as is the one that is maple. There are two other maple stands that have lots of character in the grain of the wood ~ really works of art! They will make wonderful Christmas gifts for some lucky hooker ~ if we can help you play Santa, just send an email!!
Yesterday, we went to Storybook Alpaca Farm outside of Mansfield ~ Sonny has been doing work for them and they invited us to their holiday open house! Aren't these the cutest?? Mother and baby posed for their picture ~ so sweet ~ they have 11 of them! Reba, the owner, sent home some roving with Sonny the other day and I picked up another bag of it to hook with ~ it might not be for a while, but I'll post my project for sure!

Last night, I got some hooking time in on the American Fish ~ it would come along pretty fast, if I would hook a little everyday. I still have to label the nieces' rugs and get those in the mail and there are more projects waiting in the wings! I'm hooking on both sides of the rug, making sure that if the background wool runs out, that there will be some balance to what I use to fill in ~ it's a little challenge for the old girl!

As usual, the weekend was busy ~ Friday night was our Homebuilders Christmas party and Sonny's son, Brian, was installed as President for the next year. Sonny was president 20 years ago, 1988 ~ and so it goes. My daughter-in-law took a picture of them together ~ pretty darn funny ~ they both had on grey wool jackets and black turtlenecks ~ clones!! If I can get a copy, I'll post it ~ Sonny and his Mini-Me!!!
Saturday afternoon, we attended a memorial service for a 58 year old cousin ~ that was sad. And Saturday night, we were supposed to go to Cleveland to our lake friends' annual holiday party, but we had so much blowing snow all afternoon, that we decided to stay home!! We said that not too many years ago, we wouldn't have been hindered by a little snow but when I read in the Sunday paper that there were 20 accidents in our area the night before, I was very glad we stayed in our hut!!

That's it for today ~ I'm going to my friend, Carol's, annual Christmas Tea this afternoon and fixing my daughter-in-law some birthday dinner tonite! I better get a wiggle on!!! Have a good day!!

Thursday, December 4, 2008


Last week, the hooking room/studio really got organized ~ I had to take pictures right there and then, because it won't take me long to get it all ajumble (if that's a word)! This six-sided table is built around a post that was in the middle of the room ~ this post was a source of aggravation to me for a long time before it came to me to work with it and not against it! It's a perfect table to hook around or for our grandpeople to color or make crafts or whatever.

This nice long built-in work table houses the sewing machine, serger and embellisher ~ each has it''s own little area and believe me, I know that this whole hooking room is just such a blessing to have!

All of these cubbies hold my personal wool stash and the hand-dyed wool that I sell. I haven't 'dyed' since my last show so I need to find some time to add to my stock. There is plenty of wool there just waiting to be over-dyed ~ but it probably won't happen this week!

I love the wizardly paper border ~ it kind of ties in the fact that children use this room and a childlike person who has her own wizard hat also resides here! This is a sizable space and there's easily room for a dozen or more hookers to work their magic! If you live close by and would like to bring your group here, email me and we'll make a plan!

I'm off to do some shopping for our local homeless shelter ~ when I spoke with the director this morning, she said they need silverware badly, among other things! They have two forks! 70 people all eating with spoons!! Our homebuilders group always donates to the shelter so I'm getting what they need now ~ it seems silly to wait for Christmas. Stories like this that make us so grateful for all that we have in our lives!

In several things I have read this past week, there was a recurring theme of "Be the Change You Want to See" ~ I'm trying! Have a good day, friends!

Tuesday, December 2, 2008


Yesterday was spent entertaining ~ entertaining Miss Luci (remember my dancing chicken?)!! Her mom asked if I could pick her up from kindergarten and spend the day with her ~ why, of course!! We were busy all day ~ she loves to go to my hooking room because there is a cupboard filled with kid things and she loves to color with all the markers, crayons and colored pencils a girl can use! She shredded papers in my office, had cocktail meatballs for lunch, exercised in the workout room and most importantly ~ we had afternoon tea!! She likes to wear that cute Amish boy's hat for tea ~ it goes well with her bejeweled shirt!! We use a real china tea set and set the little antique table and chairs that I found in the basement of an antique mall ~ someone had tried to remove white paint from the oak set and it turned out perfect ~ at least for my tastes!! So ~ we had banana muffins that I made that were just horrible (Luci loved them ~ even took some home!) and applesauce and Little Debbie cakes and chamomile tea w/ cream ~ and I read to her from a book on friendship that was given to me years ago ~ Miss Luci loved every minute of it ~ we had a great day! My life is often so busy and crazy that I don't make time for such things ~ I need to do it more often.

This new book "Rags to Rugs" by Patricia Herr is really full of good old Pennsylvania rugs and some more contemporary rugs, too. I have two for sale ~ if you're interested, email me and I'll send one off to you. I use books like this for reference as to color and design and inspiration for my own hooking.
The American Fish rug is progressing ~ on Sunday, I hooked all evening and feel like I made some headway! I love the various lime green tree segments but I have a little concern ~ I'm wondering if there will be enough background wool ~ I split what I have and am going to hook on both sides of the rug so that if I have to blend in, it will be evenly dispersed throughout the rug. There actually is a good substitute in my hand-dyed wool so not a problem ~ I hope!!

Sunday afternoon, I spent organizing the basement storage area of the house! This summer, I hauled all manner of good stuff out of there and had a garage sale ~ but I didn't go back and put things away, etc. I could hardly walk thru and since it's time to get out the Christmas stuff, I decided first things first!! For me, that's very progressive thinking!! It looks great down there now ~ even the old guy was shocked!

Today was a nice day in my studio ~ several gals came and bought patterns, wool, etc. I need to work harder at getting my name out there ~ I love it when hookers come to call!!! Ta ta for now!

Saturday, November 29, 2008

Just wanted to share with you a picture of this scrumptious pie that I baked for the Thanksgiving dinner ~ type into your web browser Old Fashion Paradise Pumpkin Pie for the recipe! It's a layer of cream cheese filling, a pumpkin layer and topped with a streusel layer ~ yummy! I have spent an inordinate amount of time trying to link to the recipe but when the page comes up, look at 'recently viewed recipes' and you can view it there!

Yesterday, Sonny and I took a little field trip to Holmes County Pottery for their Christmas kiln opening. Cary, the potter, makes the most wonderful functional pottery ~ we use ours every day and expect them to last forever! These are the pieces we added to our collection yesterday ~ a pie dish, four small bowls (now I have 12), and four small tumblers. We have dinner plates, dessert plates, soup bowls, wonderful little casserole dishes and some odd little tumblers for wine or water or whatever!! The pottery is located out in the heart of Amish country so it's a step back in time just to drive there.

After we left there, we picked up a niece of mine and took her with us for the rest of the day. Tracy's life is not much fun most of the time and I try to take her out occasionally ~ we went to Charm, a small town that has the largest lumber company/hardware store ever. Sonny takes saws there to be sharpened ~ we dropped him off and then we went to the fabric shop, which until the last few years was lit by kerosene lanterns! They are electrified now and it makes it lots easier to see all the many bolts of fabrics. Next door is a quilt shop with lots of patterns for household things and lots of samples made up to inspire their shoppers. I picked up a pattern and even though Tracy doesn't sew, she had fun looking at all the projects and found a couple little things to take home with her! We went back to Keim Lumber and picked up the old guy and headed for lunch at Grandma's Kitchen, where we stuffed ourselves with homecooked Amish style food!! After dropping off Tracy (she had a great day!), we headed home for what we thought was going to be a quiet evening!! We ended up going out and meeting Sonny's kids for a drink at the local Moose Club and a good time was had by all!

I've spent most of today at this crazy computer catching up on my blog reading ~ not very productive but fun for me ~ and soon we're going to drag out the turkey day leftovers for a little supper! I hope you were able to spend your day doing what made you happy!

Thursday, November 27, 2008


I just want to wish one and all a Happy Thanksgiving from here in Ohio ~ it's a clear sun-shiny day with snow on the ground ~ kind of picturesque! We're going to my son's for dinner ~ yippee!! I've made the salad and baked Friendship bread and have a pie and sweet potatoes yet to do. We're going over this morning for pumpkin roll and coffee to start the day ~ that was the plan last night when we left, at any rate!! I'm waiting for the phone to ring any minute now!!!

There is a lot to be thankful for this Thanksgiving ~ healthy family and friends ~ and we have lots of family and friends that we are so grateful for ~ lower gas prices ~ food and clothing and shelter ~ and even grateful for the lessons we are learning through the economic challenges that we face personally and nationally. It is a time for learning ~ learning to be more conservative ~ learning to share ~ learning that abundance comes in many forms. I always think that a day that I haven't learned a new thing is a day wasted!!! And believe me, I could fill a book with those things lately!!!!!

So to each of you I wish your day to be filled with lots of good food and people you love to be with ~ have a happy day!

Monday, November 24, 2008

This is little Isabella's rabbit rug ~ she is my one year old great niece ~ last year I hooked a rug for her big sister, Ariana ~ don't they have beautiful names? I had the greatest weekend doing just what I planned to do ~ I hooked all weekend!!!! We didn't even leave the house ~ for us, that's amazing!!! We ate in every night and Sonny fixed a nice omelet breakfast yesterday ~ it was a GREAT weekend!!!

The rabbit rug is Margo White's pattern and perfect for a little child's room. The background color is a muted purple heathery kind of wool ~ it is very pretty yardage but hooked up kind of blah looking. So I pulled out of my strip basket and filled in little places with some textures that blended but yet gave it a little spark. If you double click on it, you can see over the flowers there is a different wool entirely ~ just to break it up and make it look like I ran out of background ~ I love that look in old rugs. You can also see in the close-up that little Isabella is one of the flowers!!! I mentioned before that I copied her picture onto fabric that can be run through the copier and then stitched it into place and hooked up around it. I think it ended up being a cute rug and I know my nephew appreciates the effort for his little girl ~ I don't give many pieces away unless I know it will be well received and this one will be!!!

This is another of Margo's patterns that I hooked some time ago ~ it's way too pastel for me but I thought these were the colors to use at the time. It's going to a great niece's little boy baby since the colors are blue ~ I feel that there's a message in this rug ~ the word BELIEVE and I want her to 'believe' there is something wonderful out there for her and her baby!

One of the things I did over the weekend was add a 'gadget' to my blog. It's the one that lists my favorite blogs in the order they post! I saw it on Trudy's blog and finally got around to doing it ~ it saves a lot of time checking in on what my online 'friends' are doing ~ now, I check when I see they've updated. Aren't these technical guys just so smart?! And I felt pretty darned smart just being able to make it work! Oh, I added 'Fearless Followers', too ~ because I saw on the layout part of blogger that I actually had a follower and I wanted her to be listed ~ so now, friends, you know the truth of it ~ I have one very important follower ~ thank you Jacque!!!! That's it for today ~ enjoy yours!

Saturday, November 22, 2008


Aren't these the cutest gloves? Actually, they are 'Glittens' ~ a happy combination of a glove and a mitten, done in these crazy colors! I found them in Ligonier, when we were there and you can find them at www.littlemissmatched.com ~ they have a really cute website!

This week has been spent mostly in the office, getting on top of my invoicing and bill paying. The worker's comp audit went well but he was here two hours and really scrutinized things closely ~ it was routine but it covered the last two years and it's a good thing I'm organized (which it doesn't look like it, but I am) because he had me pulling invoices and insurance certificates for our subs, etc. I was really glad when that was over!!!!!!!

One thing I am very excited about is that I got into Jule Marie Smith's class at the Sauder Village rug show next summer!!! I have wanted to take from her and she'll be right here in Ohio ~ yippee!!! My friends and I always go to the show for the day but we'll be there for the whole week ~ I'll have lots of time to take pictures of the rugs and hook and see lots of people I know!! The day it came online, I was sitting at the computer ready for the 10 a.m. entry ~ me and how many other rug hookers, I don't know!! I was pretty happy when the reply came that I was IN!!! When we went to England a couple of years ago, Jule Marie was on the trip but we didn't get to talk much ~ we mostly saw each other on the bus trips. She is certainly well-known for her borders and color planning and kind of 'out there' approach to hooking, so I'm going to soak up all the knowledge she has to offer!

On Thursday evening, our homebuilders group had their annual auction for charity. Many of us bring things relating to the holidays and after much spirited bidding, builders and suppliers and guests go home with great gifts ~ more importantly, is the help we are able to give the needy families we adopt each year! Happily, we took in over $4000 and that is something in these precarious times! The building industry in our area is no different than anywhere else right now and we are soooo grateful for the outpouring of support we got that night! We ~ Sonny and Alice ~ donated 'Dinner for Six' at our home, prepared by US!! We used to do it every year but took a couple years off ~ it seemed time to resurrect that little event! Well ~ it ended up we are doing three dinners for six ~ at three different times! It turned out a little different than we planned, but it helped garner $1200 for our fund ~ one of them will be in the spring on the deck and one might be at the lake and one is right before Christmas ~ I'll get plenty of blogging material out of all those little dinner parties!!

Sonny just brought in another frame stand he finished ~ yippee ~ he's on a roll! And now ~ I'm taking my coffee and a nice muffin and heading to the hooking room!!! I couldn't be happier ~ I'll turn on Lifetime Movies and have a nice quiet afternoon doing one of the things I love to do most!! Hope you're doing something that makes you happy, too!

Monday, November 17, 2008


At least it was this morning, here in our corner of the world! Believe me, I'm not looking forward to winter in Ohio but I definitely can appreciate the beauty of the snow here in our woods ~ especially from the inside looking out! Now, at 1 in the afternoon, most of it has melted ~ Eastern Ohio got their fare share according to the news ~ so we were lucky to have escaped that!
One of the nice days last week, the birds were entertaining me from outside my office window. If you double-click on this, you'll see a really nice pileated woodpecker ~ he was darting from tree to tree ~ hammering his little head off ~ by the time I got the camera, he had darted kind of far from my window, but I got this shot before he flew off to find another dead tree!
Then this nice little cardinal was hanging out right outside my window ~ looking in to see what was going on in here! Mr. Kitty would have had a spasm if he had been in here ~ he dearly wants to go out and see the wildlife but in order to keep him safe from harm, he has to be house kitty!!

My weekend turned out differently than planned ~ life is like that, isn't it? My son, Tad, who has Downs Syndrome and lives with us, had an ear infection and was miserable. I have a wonderful sitter for him, who allows me to live this crazy life I write about but I just couldn't leave him when he didn't feel good and make her responsible for ear drops and warm compresses, etc. So ~ we had a quiet weekend at home ~ and it wasn't a bad thing. We usually are running and racing, trying to squeeze as much into a day as we possible can ~ so, it was a very nice quiet time at home. Sonny got another frame stand finished for me and time to work in his workshop. I ironed and went through my closet and took care of things that I let go during the busy summer. Tad is feeling better and so glad his mom stayed home with him ~ my life is not very often altered because of Tad ~ he's very self-sufficient and says he loves his life ~ what could be better!!!! Tad is 43 years old ~ he and I have been at this a long time ~ I am grateful that he lives with us and that he has a good life, in spite of the wild woman he got for a mother!!

One of the things I got to do, was hook a bit on this rug for my great niece. I stitched her little picture in that I copied onto fabric and next, I'll hook around it ~ hoping that she looks like one of the little flowers!! Now I've got to do some office work ~ tomorrow a Worker's Comp rep is coming to do my annual audit at 8:30 in the morning!!!! His secretary said he likes to get an early start!! Yeah, me, too!! That's it for today ~ hope you're having a happy day wherever you are!

Thursday, November 13, 2008


You guys are so nice to write or email and wonder what happened to me ~ thanks a bunch!!! What a life, people!! We went to Barb Carroll's Sunday, November 2, right after the From Our Hands show ~ five of us hooking and eating for 3 1/2 days ~ a great time was had by all! Here are a couple of pix ~ this one is Barb checking in on Gloria, who was hooking up a storm and that's the back of my friend, Mary ~ we made great partners in crime at cocktail time!!!!

And Donna was so serious about her hooking ~ right then anyway!! She was so kind to put this motley crew together and then put up with us ~ at least some of us!! We got a lot of hooking done ~ a lot of eating (the food is so good in Ligonier) ~ and lots of laughing!! Of course, it was election night on Tuesday and the Carroll's let us stay later than usual so we could watch the results ~ it made for lively conversation to say the least!!

Judy was into her rug at this point ~ she was our driver for the week ~ and we sure did run her around! Actually, she likes to drive and is ready to go anywhere her little band of travelers suggested! And those girls can sure shop ~ they made some interesting purchases and boosted the economy in Ligonier!
My project for the week ~ AMERICAN FISH ~ one of Barb's patterns. I took that and another one along ~ I couldn't decide ~ also took along a stash of sparkly wools that I had accumulated from Barb over the course of time ~ and a stash of paisleys. All of a sudden, the choice was made ~ almost more by the wool and paisleys then anything else! So Barb and I were off and running ~ and she added a couple more sparklies that she had squirreled away!

The body of the fish is entirely paisley ~ each stripe a different one ~ and outlined in a gold sparkle herringbone. What you see in the picture is what I got done in the three days we were there ~ I haven't hooked a loop since we returned home. It is going to be fabulous ~ when I go to Barb's, I like to take something that is challenging for me ~ color planning doesn't come easily to me and as I get more creative and kind of 'out there', I like to think that Barb and I work on that aspect of it together very well.

The day we left, I started sneezing and carrying on, and by the time we got back, I was really sick ~ and I still kind of have the remnants of what was a nasty cold. Then on Sunday, when we returned from a short weekend at the lake, the computer monitor had croaked ~ and with a little help from my friend (Sonny), the computer itself lost an important part, while he was unhooking all the cords to go to see the Geek Squad at Best Buy. After much consultation with a nice young man at the store, we determined that we shouldn't put money into a four-year old computer, so we bought a new one. That was the easy part ~ getting everything transferred onto it was the nightmare part!! After two trips back to the store and three of their Geek Squad guys working their magic and two long sessions on the phone and online with two nice men in India ~ they got the old girl up and running ~ well, not me, of course ~ the computer!!!! Transferring the accounting programs and data and the virus protection stuff truly was a nightmarish adventure for me. My head still hurts from all the instructions and right-clicking on this and that ~ BUT it's over now ~ and I'm able to email, blog, and account ~ life is good!!

My Seattle son is home this week to bow hunt with his brother ~ tonite they came out of the woods and came home ~ I don't realize how much I miss him until I see him. We talk and email often, so it doesn't seem like he's so far away ~ but when I see his smiling face, it really hits me. I fixed a dinner of white chicken chili, salad and a nice bread and took it to my son's house (my daughter-in-law worked all day so I tried to help her out) ~ then the kids could go to bed and we all had a crazy evening of everybody talking (Sonny's son and wife dropped by, too) ~ it always makes me wonder who's listening if we're all talking!! Tad even went over, too ~ he's always glad to see his brother. The hunters head back to the woods in the early morning and then Chris will head for the airport tomorrow night ~ no deer yet ~ maybe tomorrow!

So, here I am again ~ back to blogging ~ which, by the way, I missed terribly. Even my husband said 'your readers will think you died since you haven't blogged in so long' ~ I was actually surprised that he knew that ~ I didn't know he kept up with it ~ funny, hm? Tomorrow morning, I'm driving to Columbus for an early appointment and then we'll head to the lake late afternoon. Saturday, we're going to Indiana for my friend, Gwen's mom's 80th birthday!! I've known her since I was 13 years old ~ so I don't want to miss that celebration!! Happy trails, everybody!

Sunday, November 2, 2008


The show, "From Our Hands" has come and gone ~ and I survived!!! It was a really good show ~ lots of shoppers and absolutely wonderful folk artists! These are a few shots of my booth ~ I barely got these taken before the doors opened and wish I had the time to take pix of the some of the other booths. We stayed in Columbus Friday night ~ had some wonderful food and a nice pomegranate martini! ~ and had a 6 a.m wake-up call on Saturday. Everyone had to set up Saturday morning so it was quite hectic for one and all to be ready by 10 a.m.

Kathy Wright is the show promoter and does a really nice job of gathering unique folk artists to display and sell their wares. I got to meet fellow blogger, Pam Gracia from "Soft in the Head" (www.softinthehead.blogspot.com) ~ I thought her creations were wonderful on her blog ~ they are stupendous in person! Tammy Speicer of Humble Crow was across from us and she and her sister had a great little booth of their stuffed animals and antiques! Kris Miller of Spruce Ridge Studios (a link to Kris's blog is at the left) also had a booth as well as the Buckeye Rug Hooking group who demonstrated and displayed their wonderful rugs.
As you can see, I incorporate some folk art in my booth as well ~ just odds and ends of primitive things from other artists ~ our rug hooking frames and stands ~ and a few finished hooked pieces.
Thank goodness for Sonny's help ~ I couldn't have loaded, set-up, and manned that booth all day alone. I really needed his help and although, it's not his favorite thing to do, he was a trooper. I even witnessed him selling Hartman hooks and talking about the proddy tools, while I was talking with someone else!!!!! You have no idea what a red-letter day that was!!!!!!!!!

I love to do a good show and aside from selling, one of the benefits is the contacts you make with other rug hookers. I met gals that are blog readers and gals that I email back and forth with ~ people that share the love of rug hooking and the creativity it brings to our lives! It was great day and on the way home, we met our friends Vivian and Lou, for dinner ~ they do the show, too. Lou makes great little primitive shelves and boxes and dry sinks, etc. ~ probably Vivian and I were the only ones who were 'bone tired' or would admit it ~ but it was great way to finish up our day!

So ~ as to not let any grass grow under my feet ~ I am getting ready to leave for Ligonier, Pa. to go hook at Barbara Carroll's for three days ~ I'm meeting a friend by the roadside again (I do a lot of that) at 11:30 this morning and five of us are off to hook and eat for three days!!!!!! What could be better??!! I'll post about that next week when I return! Until, then have a good week!

Thursday, October 30, 2008


Yes, I actually have done some hooking ~ I have a show Saturday in Columbus ~ the From Our Hands Show ~ you can look at the website www.fromourhands.com and check it out! This is a pattern that I drew freehand on a piece of hand-dyed wool that has a more open weave ~ I call it hookable wool ~ the flower stems are needle-felted yarn ~ I used my Babylok embellisher that doesn't get as much use as it should! It's a great way to do something quick since you don't have to fill in the background ~ this is a pillow top and will be a pillow by Saturday's show! The show is at the Aladdin Temple across from Easton shopping complex and is from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. ~ great hours and some really great folk art, rug hooking and some antiques! We'll go down Friday and make a night of it ~ after all, it's Halloween ~ there should be something 'brewing'!!

This little star mat was made for the top of this little old milking stool ~ I left the rough finish alone ~ they make a nice combination. The tan wool really comes off looking whiter than it is due to the camera flash.

Last week, I spent more time on this than I should have and finally took it off the frame so I would leave it alone. It's for my great niece, Isabella, who recently celebrated her first birthday ~ I copied her picture onto fabric and am going to hand stitch it onto the foundation and hook right up to the edge of it ~ she'll look like one of the little flowers!! Margo White is the designer ~ I loved the simplicity of it for a baby's room ~ last year I did another of Margo's patterns for the big sister, Ariana, and I also stitched her picture into the rug ~ it's a nice touch and the parents loved it!

One of the blog readers, Diana, asked if I knew the designer of the chicken runner that is in my Sauder Rug Show post of August 21 ~ if anyone knows the answer, would you post here on the blog ~ we'll try to get an answer for Diana!

In the midst of everything else, I dyed about 9 yards of wool today ~ started at 4 p.m. ~ I swear I'm going to work on getting better organized!! We did have a funeral to attend today so that's why the late start ~ but if you've read much here at all, you know I just get into gear when faced with a deadline!! Tomorrow and Friday ~ I'll be like a white tornado!! I have the last dryer load to empty and then I'm calling it a night! Sleep tight!