Saturday, March 31, 2012

~*Early Work Mercantile has been updated*~

Hello Dear Friends! Happy April! The weather this weekend has been wonderful here in Kansas (actually, the last several weeks have been wonderful!). Today it was near 90 degrees... and tomorrow is going to be warm too. I made the first batch of potato salad tonight to enjoy with our supper tomorrow night. We have plans to grill out! I also planted some annuals in my many flower pots... and am now hoping we don't get a freeze. Normally we have to wait well into May to plant... but it is so warm this year. I just couldn't wait!

Early Work Mercantile has been updated! The photo above shows two of my four offerings this month. I do hope you get a chance to pop over to view my page... and to browse the other artists' offerings as well.

Wishing you warm smiles...


Friday, March 30, 2012

~*Friday Finishes*~

Good Day Dear Friends! Another lovely Friday has rolled around... and here are some stunning ~*Friday Finishes*~!

Yup... I'm just going to go right into showing them... they are so brilliant and I don't want to boggle your mind with my rambling chatter... they are too special!

Enjoy! Oh, and let me just say... these are all Freebie pattern finishes and you can find the patterns HERE.

From Paula...
Paula made this finish into a lovely birthday card for her Mom... who celebrated her 78th birthday on March 15th. Happy Birthday to her! Paula said the words read, "Happy Birthday Mom". She also told me that her Mom loved it... but we all can tell she would. Right? Lovely!

From AnaCristina...
AnaCristina didn't give any information with her finish, but it is simply beautiful.

From Doris...
Doris is one of my dear close, online friends. She has punched many of my pattern doodles over the last several years and never ceases to amaze me. This is yet another charming finish! She told me she is on an Americana Crusade currently! Delightful!

From Vickie (no blog)...
This, I think, is a truly marvelous idea! We, well I, am always thinking of how to re~do something from the Goodwill store and make it new again. Vickie, however, purchased this purse NEW at JCPenney... on clearance. It had an icky plastic label over the quilted part of the purse. She knew instantly that she would replace that with a stitch. And she did! Now this is amazingly delightful! Don't you agree?

She used a 28 ct black linen with a gray DMC along with DMC 4170.

Thank you Ladies for stitching and sharing!


Thank you too... to all the kind folks that have commented on our kitchen make~over. For now, I'm going to live with the blue cabinets the way they are. However, before I give up on them... I am going to paint a scrap piece of wood. Then I will play with some Walnut stain to see how it looks. If I like it... I just may wipe it over all the cabinets.

Wishing you warm smiles and a great weekend ahead...


Thursday, March 29, 2012

~*Kitchen Update*`

Hello Dear Friends! The week is getting away from me... here it is already Thursday and I haven't posted since last Friday. Well, I haven't been goofing off... I, well my husband AND I, have been working hard trying to get the kitchen in shape. This make~over is tough... grueling... work! I'm sure it will be well worth it in the end!

All the cabinets are set and in place. We kept the upper ones and a single bottom one from before... but purchased simple, unfinished base cabinets to fill in the under side. We needed to do this after making room for the new dishwasher.

I then painted the walls, ceiling, and cabinets. The ceiling is a nice clean white. The walls are a fresh antique white. They were paper bag color before... along with our living room... and made the room so dark. After the kitchen work is complete... I'll paint the living room walls antique white too. (Ignore the mess on the plywood counters... we are living in our kitchen while the work is getting done.)

It doesn't show well in the pictures, but Tony also put up a beadboard back spash. I love it!

The cabinets were NOT suppose to be Baby Blue!!! I'm disappointed with the shade and don't feel the paint matched the sample. However, I am going to live with it for awhile and see if it grows on me. If it doesn't... the doors will come down and I'll paint it over again.

The paint color was suppose to be Dutch Boy... Hurricane Cliffs...

The new knobs and pulls game in today's mail. They are antique copper... to match the old existing hinges. I am very pleased with them... and feel they help me deal with the paint better. We still need to put the hardware on the lower cabinets... Tony couldn't help me today because he has to go to work.

*** See the cakes sitting on the stove? I baked four of them today for the school carnival dinner tomorrow night. The house smells Heavenly right now!!! ***

Having a ceiling fan in the kitchen is really going to be nice. On those hot summer days... it will help keep me from getting so over~heated!

What we still have to do...

counter top
baseboard/kick board
a wall light over the kitchen sink
a new exhaust hood
and maybe one day... after we can save up some funds... a new refrigerator that isn't white

With all the work inside... I haven't been able to get my work outside done. The flowerbeds need cleaning. The weather has been wonderfully warm! I did sneak out to the greenhouse yesterday to start some seeds. I haven't been able to craft much this week... but will be doing that the rest of the day today and tomorrow. Saturday night is the update for Early Work Mercantile!

Wishing you warm smiles...


Friday, March 23, 2012

~*Friday Finishes*~

Hello Friends and Happy Friday! The day is getting away from me. Trinity and I took some time this morning to hit some garage sales. I was lucky to find several 100% wool garments for a great price at one sale; while he found several little trinket toys at several other sales. It was a fun time out and about. However, after getting home... I started not to feel too well. It seems I have a cold brewing... aches, chills, and a naggy cough. Needless to say... most of the rest of the day has been worthless. There is so much to do... but I'm just not feeling it right now. Hopefully tomorrow will be better.

Enough of that... how about some ~*Friday Finishes*~!

These were lovingly stitched by Robin to give the hostesses of her bridal shower. What a great idea! And what lovely works! Robin used my freebie ~*Friend Freebie*~...

Robin, they are just beautiful! Thank you for stitching and sharing. Best wishes and congratulations on your wedding too. May you have a lifetime of happiness together... now and always. <3

Wishing you all warm smiles...


Thursday, March 22, 2012

~*Keeping Busy*~

That's what I do... keep busy! Hello Friends! I'm still busy working on the kitchen. I've removed all the clutter from over the upper cabinets and re-organized all the things in the cabinets. Oh... that is something else! We keep going to the wrong cabinet for a cup, plate, spoon, box of cereal etc. Things seemed backwards after installing the dishwasher... and this needed to be done. Now we need to get use to it! My next chore is to prep for paint... walls, ceiling, and cabinets. I've picked out my colors... but will show you more when I get it slapped on.

I finished my challenge piece for AAPG into a small pillow/pinkeep...

I do just LOVE how it turned out! It is now on its way to a new home.

I've also started another antique adaptation. I'm using mostly scraps for thread for it too...

Funny... I do love to make things with horses... but I am frightened by them face to face. Don't get me wrong, they are beautiful... and I'm sure gently most of the time, but I'll keep my distance.

Also on my list to GET DONE... my pattern for the Prim Sister's Club. My fabric order has arrived. One of these will be part of the kit for my pattern....

My piece is stitched and charted... just needs some sewing and a write up of the instructions.... then off to Jeanne and the girls at Country Sampler!

On that note... I better get back to work! Wishing you all warm smiles...


Tuesday, March 20, 2012

~*Weekend Update*~

Oh boy... what a weekend it was! Hello Dear Friends! Many of you know, but some may not, Monday is still considered part of our weekend because of my husband's work week. He works four-10s and has Saturday, Sunday, and Monday off. It is a great schedule and allows us more time together... and more time to play and work.

This weekend was no exception. We played and worked... and worked and worked... and played a little more! I won't give you a minute by minute recap... but I will highlight some of it.

We celebrated the March Birthdays with a big family gathering. There were lots of smiles, laughs, good food... and CAKE! It is always nice to get together with the family. The little ones are growing so quickly. They are getting taller and taller... and the voices (because we mostly have boys) are getting deeper and deeper!

Our kitchen re-do that was so unplanned and unexpected... at least at this very moment... is moving right along. We have the floor patched and the new cabinets set in place. For now, we have only a plywood counter-top. That will be replaced soon with either a handmade butcher block or a pre-built Formica one. We plan to put bead-board on the back wall for a back-splash... and I would like to get a new ceiling light/fan. Our next step though... is to paint. Our kitchen and family room are basically one big room... so it will all be painted. I've already started removing things from the walls... and hope to spend the week prepping them for paint. I'm starting at the top too... our ceiling will also be painted. We live in a home built in 1970... and the popcorn with gold flecks was popular at the time... but is no more!

Would you like to see how things are looking?


how it looks now...

We found a penny under the old cabinets... so we are on our way to saving to pay for all of this!

Somehow over the weekend... I managed to punch the antique rug challenge pattern Kelley shared with our AAPG group. I had started hooking the pattern while at the Lenexa Hook-in a few weeks ago, but I didn't see how I would ever finish it on time. The challenge deadline is the end of March. So... since I love the pattern so... I drew it up on Weaver's and went to town!

I made it extra challenging by deciding to use only threads from my tangled mess!

I finished punching it before bed last night... and then stained it with my walnut/spice mix. Today I plan to sew it up into a symple pillow/pinkeep.
Looking at it closely... you can see all shades of threads. It turned out beautifully... if I do say so myself!

Also this weekend... I listed a few things on Ebay. With all the auction goings recently... we have started to accumulate things. These are things that some may collect or desire to have... vintage, olde, and/or just kind of cool. I've only listed a couple for now... but do have many other items to put up. Some of the primitives are hard for me to part with... but I will be offering some. Swing by if you get a chance. There might be something added that you want or need to have! CLICK HERE to visit my Ebay offerings.

Wishing you all warm smiles...


Friday, March 16, 2012

~*Friday Finishes*~

WooHoo! It is Friday! You know, I've never been a coffee drinker & always would say I didn't like it. Although, I've always loved the way it smells. Apparently I'm growing up! It seems I've developed a great fondness for Vanilla Cappuccino! Yummy! So, now instead of starting my day with the usual ice tea or Diet Pepsi (ya, I know bad bad bad!)... Cappuccino it is! Heck, maybe I'll even try a real coffee one of these day!

Okay... you may have found that silly... but that is me!

Alright... enough of that... now on to some delightfully beautiful ~*Friday Finishes*~!

This first finish comes from Brook... from my pattern ~*Friendship Book*~...

She made a few personal changes to the design (which is always alright with me)... and she has big plans for her book. Brook does work in Honduras for The Carrizo Project. This is a project designed to help disabled and under-served individuals handicrafts... and how to be more independent productive citizens. She visits Honduras three to four times a year. Her next visit is scheduled for April... and she plans to have the women she visits with sign her book. What a treasure to cherish always!

Thank you, Brook, for stitching and sharing! Have a fun & safe trip!


These lovely finishes are from Cindy...

This is her adaptation of ~*Spring Pillow Tuck*~... and oh~so~pretty it is! She used a 32 count linen with Crescent Colors Bing Cherry...

And her finish of the freebie ~*Young Girl Sampler*~... she used a 32 ct linen for it also, and wasn't exactly sure on her thread fibers but thinks it may be The Gentle Art Sarsaparilla...

Cindy, they are both very nice! Thank you again for stitching & sharing. I just love to see your work!


Thank you to all of you for sending your finishes. It is so nice to be able to see them and share them. Keep them coming!

Wishing you all warm smiles...


Thursday, March 15, 2012

~*Primitive Handmades Mercantile Update*~

Hello Dear Friends! Just a quick note to tell ya... my page on Primitive Handmades Mercantile is now updated! Here are my simples up for offering this month...

There is another awesome contest this month too! Here are the wonderful prizes...

For the home page... and info on the contest... CLICK HERE.

I do hope you play along! The contest is set up to be a lot of fun. Enjoy!

Wishing you all warm smiles...


Tuesday, March 13, 2012

~*Spring Is Near!*~

Hello Dear Friends! I hope you had a wonderful weekend... ours was a whirlwind of fun and activity. It is nice to take a little bit of a break today to enjoy the sunshine and spots of Spring...

We have many lovely yellow blooms popping around the yard.

Both of our Apricot trees have opened their buds today... and the bees are happy! This is so early for them... there is a big chance we will get another frost and loose fruit again this year... but we can always hope & pray that we don't.

Remember this? My greenhouse! Tony still has things he wants to do to repair it from all the wind damage, but he did a little more on it this weekend... adding the boards on either side of the door. That inspired me to do some cleaning and decorating around it. Soon I hope to get some potting soil and seeds!
We went to two auctions over the weekend. I found several little treasures that I'll share at a later time. One auction had a portable dishwasher. It was white and had some wear, but I told Tony that I finally felt I could break down and put one in the kitchen (well, let HIM put one in the kitchen) ... most of my life I have not had a dishwasher. I've been insisting over the past few years that I was fine without one... and I really was... but it would be nice to have one. We didn't get the one at the auction... but we did go to the home store yesterday and bought this one. That, however, has lead to more work. It seems we are now in the midst of remodeling our old kitchen... the entire kitchen! It was sudden and unplanned... but I am so grateful! The cabinets to the right of the dishwasher are our old ones. The one on the left is a new one we picked up to fill the hole left from demolition. We discovered though... that the newer cabinets are taller than the older ones. That means we must replace ALL of our lower cabinets! The upper ones will remain, but we will be getting a new counter top and sink with the re~do on the lower bunch. To make the cabinets look like they belong to one another ~ top & bottom... I have plans to paint them... and I'm thinking a lovely slate blue~gray. Apparently Spring brings on RENEWED ENERGY! I'll update you more on the kitchen progress as we go.

I wasn't able to craft too much over the weekend... but I did do some cross stitch on the drive to Manhattan (an hour long)... where we went to purchase our new dishwasher. My deadline for Primitive Handmades Mercantile is approaching... and I need to be getting some finishes done! We update new offerings this Friday!

On that note... I better get to craftin'!

Wishing you all warm smiles and sunshine...


Friday, March 9, 2012

~*Friday Finishes*~

Hello Dear Friends! Happy Friday to you all! I hope you all have super plans for a great weekend ahead. There are a couple auctions and a few garage sales that I would love to hit... and, of course, lots of things to craft on around here. We are expecting rain on Sunday... but that only means that I'll be sitting in the living room with my boys watching Nascar. It will be fun!

There is a beautiful ~*Friday Finish*~ to share! This one comes from Elisa... a finish of my ~*Strawberry and Bunny*~ pinkeep pattern...
Isn't it just darling? So bright & cheery... a great way to welcome Spring!

If you are interested in the pattern, it can be found at your local needlework shop or may be purchased from my Etsy Shoppe.

Wishing you all warm smiles...


Wednesday, March 7, 2012

~*What do you fill with?*~

Hello Dear Friends! It seems I've been a bit quiet here lately. There has been a lot of crafty work going on behind the scenes (so to speak)... but it can't be shared just yet. So... since it seemed past time to post... and I was struggling to come up with something to talk about... this subject dawned on me...

What do you fill with? Your pinkeeps, your pillows, your dolls... your crafty goodies?

Maybe you will find this information useful and want to try something a little different.

Here are many I've used. Some I like more than others... but only one I really dislike (but will use it if the need arises and I must use it)...

this is collected after my husband's woodworking task is complete... or from friends that are kind enough to share it with me when they have a pile or two. Use a small scoop to fill the sawdust into the opening. Then, I 'thump' it down by tapping it on the table to get it to 'settle'. Fill it slowly and be patient as you work. One thing you might want to consider when using it... the weave of your fabric. If your fabric has an open weave, you may want to use add some fusible webbing to the backside to keep the sawdust from leaking out.

***I'm editing my post to add... I use a small scoop to drop the sawdust into my pillow opening slowly. It does get messy, but with patience and perseverance it will work. ***

Play sand or sand you can find in the craft store may be 'better' because it is cleaner... but this ol' sand works well too. I will suggest though... BAKE it in the oven for a short time to kill any critters that may be calling it home. Simply put it in a narrow dish & bake it at 350 degrees for an hour or so. This will give you a good 'heavy' fill when used. It is also good to keep your pins & needles sharp.

Oh it just smells so pretty! Other dried flowers & herbs will work too! Just make sure that your drieds are good and dry... to prevent mold & mildew.

From the pet store... bedding used for your pet hamster. It isn't as fine as sawdust, but it works too. This will be 'cleaner' than sawdust.


Also from the pet store... crushed walnut shells. These are just WONDERFUL (yes, one of my favorites!)... and inexpensive too. Filling with them gives a good 'heavy' feel. It is also good to use to keep your pins & needles sharp. Some of my friends have made a blend using the walnut shells and the dried lavender.

Several years ago, I purchased a LARGE box from an online friend. She washed it & shipped it to me. It has a nice, plump feel when used and is great for your pins & needles... because the lanolin in the wool lubricates them. To use it, cut it into 'chunks' before you fill your pinkeep. It makes the task easier.

To re~purpose, re~cycle, or up~cycle... whatever you prefer to call it... these next two are GREAT for that!

These are the small pieces or un~usable strips leftover from my rug hooking projects. I save them in gallon size plastic bags until I have a pinkeep or pillow to pop them into. They give a great LUMPY sort of look when used. And because they are wool, they too are good for your pins & needles.

These happen to be strips from an old sheet that was 'too worn out to use' any longer. Rather than throw it away, I washed it one more final time... then began ripping it into 1/2 to 1 inch wide pieces. I'll cut these into shorter lengths later (18 inches or so)... and use them to fill pillows or dolls. They too give a great LUMPY look. They also have a good heavy feel. You can also use scrap pieces of fabric used for your doll bodies. I try to throw very little away in my studio!

Lastly, there is this. Yes, it is the one that I like least of all. It will work for filling dolls and pillows... but I would suggest you NOT use it for your pinkeeps. The synthetic material will dull your pins & needles. Plus, in the 'olden days' they didn't use this product... they would have used one of the items listed above. You know me... I like to keep it olde!

Well, that about wraps it up. Those are the items I have used. I hope you found this information useful.

Wishing you warm smiles...


Sunday, March 4, 2012

~*Auction Fun*~

Again! Yippee!

Hello Friends! Yesterday Tony & I went to another estate auction. My Mother-in-law and Father-in-law were there also. It was great fun and we brought home a few new treasures. The building was cold (no heat), but time spend outside was enjoyable with some awesome sunshine.

We needed more seating in our living room, but weren't in a position to shop at a furniture store to get more. Plus, vintage and old is always good for me! We picked up this beautiful chair yesterday. A little vacuuming and upholstery cleaner... and it is perfect (a little wear is alright with me). It blends very well with our other chair and sofa too...

This may be my new 'stitching' spot! It is quite comfy!

The details in the wood trim are just beautiful.

We didn't buy a whole lot. Tony found a new dolly for the garage... I didn't take a picture of that. Here are the other new treasures scored...

A vintage, child's watering can... red is my favorite color!

And an old shoe repair... perfectly prim decor...

We followed up the auction with lunch out and a few errands. I was thrilled to get home to clean house.... and re~arrange the living room for our new chair.

Wishing you warm smiles...