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1 in 8 women in the u.s. will be diagnosed with breast cancer in her lifetime.
the 3-Day for the cure is a 3-day 60 mile walk.  75% of net proceeds help fund national 
and large public health outreach programs.  the remaining 25% helps fund local community and affiliate support and outreach programs. 
pictures from
san diego 60 miles 3day 2013   
3-Day Alumni Commitment Club
the greatest risk factors for breast cancer are being female and growing older.

click here everyday to fund mammograms for women in need:  the breast cancer site

NOTE:  if emails to lois@elegantstitch(dot)com are bouncing please use: - thanks


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1st quarter 2013, 2nd quarter 2013, 3rd quarter 2013, 4th quarter, 2013

april 11, 2014

did the world get away from me this week - ya think???  hair cut, eye appointment, picking out 2 new pairs of eyeballs, dogger duty last night, another appointment, and then trying to shovel at home...getting in here by 6:45 every morning still didn't do the trick, 10 cases of bleach to pick up on wednesday night, it was just the non-stop mess of events, the golden finches are back in town, all the new birdie feeders are set up in the back yard, the pomegranate tree is already flowering...and i have a bunch of my favorite people coming in two weeks for a finishing event and i am so excited to see everybody.

a word to those who are coming...bring stuff, bring tools that you normally use, we'll give you shopping lists of "stuff" you will need once we figure out how we are finishing and into what we are if you're driving and can shove it in your car - all the better - if you are flying - not to worry - we'll figure it out and i'm bringing tons of tools and annie is going to help me and you will all be so proud of will barely be able to tolerate your sweet's going to be fun, creative, inspired, amazing and i am so looking forward to seeing thing finished or well on the way.  if you have any questions before you come - please don't hesitate to call me - 800.790.0810 and we can get you whatever information you need before you land in motown...

so...with that...and because i've still got at least 3 hours of work to do before i even think of going home...and because if you really truly get thru this entire "thing" there is a little tidbit at the end of this you will probably want to read because we are so flipping excited about it...OMG am i excited about it...

samsarah design studio:
happy dance.jpg (131894 bytes) happy dance $23.40
poor patti spent days and weeks waiting for this fabric...and it's finally here and this is the cutest kit - comes with fabric, red buttons and the adorable hanger...cute as can be...just so cute.

cricket collection
march.jpg (145062 bytes) march $8.00
april.jpg (151474 bytes) april $8.00

ship's manor
fire and ice.jpg (149014 bytes) fire and ice $12.00
and yes, this was stitched in valdani fibers and annie and i switched them out to weeks dye works and weeks fabric, smalled it up since we have a hard time with 28 count and yes, we kept the list and we would be delighted to do that for you too - just let us know.  it's pretty terrific and i think it's going home with annie in the morning...

now...for the fun...i found this amazing woman on the internet who makes the most incredible hand made, from hand dyed wool, beautifully stuffed, top notch, too stinking cute makedo pincushions.  in fact, they are so incredibly stinking cute that i have purchased a whole zoo of them personally and right now all the babies are living on my counter at home in a box (to be put away this weekend) and all my b'day pressies for all my friends have been purchased.  anyway...after that introduction...i have commissioned her to make me the perfect "twinkle" birdie makedo pincushion specially for us, not to be found anywhere else, no two will be exactly the same by nature of the hand-dyed wools, specially with a tag that reads "twinkle", specially as a fundraiser for our 3day, 60 mile walk in dallas in november and she has graciously accepted the commission and is sewing her brains out for us right now.  they will be $20.00 each plus shipping ($2.35) and will be thru paypal only and not thru the shop.  they are truly the cutest things i have ever seen - her work is incredible...and i love "twinkle" to pieces...and because i'm such a horrible tease...and because this isn't exactly "twinkle" but close enough to give you the idea... and yes, it's very tiny but that's part of the tease because this is "twinkle's" first cousin...
Item picture [okay - super brat made her a little bit bigger ;) but remember, this is first cousin and not twinkle!!!]

so now i hear you all calling me a brat...and yes, i will accept that challenge...i am a brat...and those that know me well know that i'm a super brat...and i have a list started and if you would like to be on that list and send me an email - i will send you a paypal invoice which will secure your spot on my "twinkle" list as soon as the invoice is processed...and then wait until you see what else i've come up with...we need to raise our funds for our walk...  tiny pink glass salt cellars that are made into pin cushions too and then spools of silk buttonhole twist that have been poor house is bulging at the seams and my brains have just exploded...

so...the work remains piled high, dudley discovered the sprinkler system yesterday morning at home and was a child running thru the sprinklers on a warm summer day because we hit 87 degrees (too hot, far tooooo soon) and all the while dudley was singing "happy" at the top of his lungs as he raced thru the water having an grand time while the three other doggers stood off the "dancing path" and  looked at him like he had lost his's all about "first time experiences" when you're the dudley...

enjoy the weekend...and off i go to continue shoveling out the day...and thanks for visiting today.

april 4, 2014

lots going on this feet hurt...i have walking to do this weekend...and dinner for a million because this is the weekend annie and i do service for the church auction and dinner...last year it was a few weeks later than this and i was so incredibly sick with the california crud that i never lifted my head off the couch.

last night was 100 plus doggers fed, kennels cleaned and sleepy time for those doggers - and bruce and me about as stinky as one can get...3.5 hour shift and then home to feed our crew and get them settled in for the night.  

couple of new things in this week...and the tarts are finishing things...i can hear them...and i'm trying to get organized for the finishing event the end of this month...and there are bins and stacks of stuff everywhere while this preparation takes place...actually, there are bins and stacks pretty much everywhere and next week is going to be spent getting organized (again) and cleaning (again) and maybe purchasing a lap top (but don't tell mr. bear that quite yet)... we go...because it's going to be very short, sweet and toooooo the point and theni will be jetting out of here at a reasonable time because i really do need to do something with these hoofs at the bottom of my ankles before they do something with me and then i need to stop and do an errand on the way home after the hoof treatment...and i got the most BEAUTIFUL pink carnival glass salt cellars in the mail yesterday that i found on a shopping site and i have "pink" on the brain...and i so want to play with quote somebody...more news at 11...  and while i'm at hoof treatment i have a new bead catalog to pour thru...could be an eventful afternoon.

the purple thread:
spring strawberry.jpg (82256 bytes) spring strawberry (complete kit) with linen, wool felt, threads , twine and a needle - very cute  $17.00

StitchPlay Designs - Carole Lake and Michael Boren
printed canvas embellishment book.jpg (153691 bytes) Painted Canvas Embellishment:  An Idea Book $35.00
great book - great diagrams - so glad we have it in the shop - absolutely perfect for your reference library.

now...not because i'm being snarfy...but because it's so beautiful and this time of year is here for such a short period of time...
dogwood.jpg (172138 bytes) the dogwood are blooming
poppies.jpg (165578 bytes) these are on my front driveway - my neighbor from arizona thought they were weeds a couple of months ago and pulled them out - this is the 2nd batch...
rose.jpg (75678 bytes) the first set of roses for the season is always the best and these are the first ones on this particular bush which is always way ahead of the other ones because it gets morning sun...
wisteria.jpg (97090 bytes) this plant was given to me about 13 years ago by a very dear friend that i have since lost.  it always seems to bloom on her birthday and this year it was a week late...but there was a reason...the bloom helped another friend in wisconsin...and actually both my friends knew each other thru me...there's always a reason for everything or so it seems.
white wisteria.JPG (104056 bytes) and finally...this is the top of my wood patio cover that measures about 25'x20' and this stuff is all over the top of it.  never lasts more than a week, two if we're lucky...the smell is simply incredible, the hummers love it, the bumble bees go insane for it...and when it's snows white blossoms all over the patio and the only dogger with long hair (daisy buchanan) brings them in all over her skirt so it also snows white blossoms in the house too!!!

and so...that's the word from's supposed to be 87 next week which is far too hot far too quickly with far too little rain...and fire season in california is going to be so very ugly...but maybe it will just last for a few days and we'll get some more moisture...and i know all of you are so sick of snow...i know...and i'm's been various stages of disgusting weather all over the country this year.

have a great weekend...i'm flying and the monkeys are chasing me...and thanks for stopping in for a visit.

march 28, 2014

yeah, right, best intentions, annie's rope, too much to do and far too little time to do it...but...i'm working on it...i promise and i'm just going to surprise you all and you are going to come visit and the entire house will be redecorated, the outside will be painted, new carpet, new will be surprised and i will be relieved...but in the interim, everything now works as it should here and the other "house" is almost finished with it's "make-over".

new things this week and then some pictures and chat  just to keep you updated...

pineberry lane:
this is my work pinkeep.jpg (167749 bytes) this is my work pinkeep $11.00

scissortail designs:
spring bling easter eggs.jpg (126956 bytes) spring bling easter eggs $8.50 (this is going to start a series and i just think these are so cute.

the stitching parlor:
secret of the sea.jpg (135465 bytes) secret of the sea needlebook $10.00

blackbird designs:
rosy morning.jpg (105290 bytes) rosy morning loose feathers $9.00

samsarah design studio:
light house.jpg (91057 bytes) ten x the fun: light house $8.00

just nan:
lorelei lamb.jpg (187240 bytes) lorelei lamb ornament $13.00 and we added the fabric for you on us.
rhyme & reasons.jpg (197345 bytes) rhyme & reasons w/embellishment pack $17.00
bunny shower.jpg (198152 bytes) bunny shower $14.50

needle's notion:
 alpha betsy's house.jpg (156723 bytes) alphabetsy's house $10.00
this includes the finishing instructions to complete the doll pincushion and finish alphabetsy's house as either a flat-backed piece for display or a sewing caddy with felt pockets to hold needlework tools.

tuesday's tarts - busy girls...and annie's got more coming...but she too is doing the "run out of time at the end of the day" syndrome - just like me and lori is bringing some things in on tuesday for final "fluffs" and then we can take some pictures.
annie's lotus box.JPG (117624 bytes) annie's lotus box (this is stitched in wdw noel instead of what was called for - of course it is)
annie's quaker button ball.JPG (120804 bytes) annie's quaker ball (and yes, we changed these up too and she's now working on a "spring version" that will be all kinds of wonderful
diane's petite fleur.JPG (459765 bytes) diane's petite fleur (yes, it's sideways but the photo would not cooperate in photoshop so it was either sideways or not at all because it wasn't here to rephotograph.  pretty cute...and to give it perspective...there is a stitched piece on the back of the hornbook and the scissors are only 2.75" long
diane's box.JPG (109857 bytes) diane's betsy morgan box out of the magazine...and the beginnings of the beaded tassel top for annie's box...
diane's ball.JPG (155778 bytes) diane's quaker ball (yes, we changed out the colors on this too - but we do that alot around here)

other chat:
i am working on some more "donation" pieces for our dallas walk in november - some will be for expenses for our team and there is another one that will be sent to you upon me receiving a donation on my komen web page in support of my walk.  we think they are pretty hang on - i've got at least 5 or 6 different things that are in "stages" of completion...and the problem is i can't seem to turn off my "brain" and it just goes 1,200 miles an hour.  

we got .5" of rain on tuesday - we were so happy and it helped put some of the pollen down...huge help when putting on mascara in the morning...i can actually get it to stay on and not run down my face with the teary's supposed to rain tomorrow too and they are talking monday too...could be another "happy" song kind of day. most of you know - bear and i volunteer at our no-kill rescue facility which is out past the airport and about 2.25 miles from the house.  it's kind of a comedy when we come home because everything gets stripped off and immediately put into the washer: pants, shirts, sometimes the shoes...and of course spraying out 30 plus kennels with bleach and constantly pouring bleach into the spraying bottles, attaching those to hoses, i never come home without being soaked to the skin from thighs downwards...and sometimes from thighs upwards too.  i got in the car last night to come home...and looked at my pants...which are (were) black cotton knit...but after a few months of bleach spraying...kinda look like this!
boots.jpg (160131 bytes)  we call it grunge wear because everybody who works there with the dogs and the kennels - we all have matching clothes...BUT, it's so all worth it because...this is what gets rescued and given a 2nd or 3rd chance at can this not make you smile every time you go to work.
pits1.jpg (104817 bytes) pits2.jpg (119529 bytes) pits3.jpg (118239 bytes) these are the little pits that were being weaned last week...mama is so happy to live in the "downstairs" enclosure right now...these little ones are fat as little butterballs and quite vocal.

our 2nd batch of little ones - turned over at the county kill shelter...mama is full min-pin but because there are 2 "woodpile" children out of the six in the litter, 2 rescue groups turned her down and she was going to be put down along with the puppies if wags and whiskers rescue had not taken her in...she is just the best mama...and when everybody is weaned...she will be going to the vet to be neutered so this doesn't happen to her again...
min pins.JPG (124761 bytes)  she's a wonderful mama and the babies are about 4 weeks old now and growing like little weeds.

so there it is...we have a busy weekend...tomorrow 2 shifts at rescue because there is a fund-raiser going on (bikers for barkers) which will take every available pair of bear and i are doing a morning shift, coming home and making dogger food for our herd, and then heading back over for the clean the outside kennels, feed and put them to bed for the night shift and then coming home.  sunday i train walk in the morning and then try to get some of the house stuff done as well as a million other things...but there is never any time for the wicked...and i'm a pretty wicked girl.

great weekend to you all, thanks for visiting, i wish spring weather for everybody to the east of us...wisteria is on the way out and everything is leafed and ready for full-blown spring...and then too soon it will be summer and we will seriously have to deal with the water issues and it just isn't going to be pretty.

one last picture...didnot is really trying to nap here and people just keep talking to her...
dids sleeping.JPG (144729 bytes)  yes, totally spoiled...i'll admit it.

march 21, 2014

so...once again - it's been quite the week...we were having trouble with the lois@es email bouncing...the new website people tried to move the webmail over to the new host - POOF - my old website vanished from the face of the earth for almost 40 hours...and then, back it came late last here i am this morning, then there will be some serious backing up and the new website will be ready for uploading by next wednesday - come hell or very high water.  and, now, after all of that - both email addresses work wonderfully well...

to add insult to injury - the coffee pot decided that the little lever that controls the flow of coffee into the pot was going to misbehave so we had two, count 'em two, 12 cup coffee tsunami down the counters, etc.  

other than that - i never "lost it" - as i said on face book - nothing i could do about it - it was a lesson in patience, ranting at the poor website guy would have done absolutely nothing except make him feel bad and it was going to be like trying to teach pigs to i just went and fed the doggers last night and cleaned out kennels and my "wags & whiskers" attire is now turning the most lovely shades - it's amazing what happens to a pair of black cotton knit pants when they are saturated with bleach water for a couple of weeks...they are getting more and more attractive as the weeks go by.  absolutely cutest 3.5 week old min pins and mama in the "safe" room last night...absolutely beautiful...and then the very fat and sassy pit puppies that are so fat they look like little rolly balls - they are in the process of being weaned - puppies not so happy - mama - she's singing pharrell's happy song at the top of her voice.

and with all of are the new things for this week...and then i'm shuffling off to cut wool for the 2014 breast cancer piece...and i will be able to give you a sneak peak next week too - it's different and graphic and fun and quirky and i am very excited about it and i got some incredible help from a very dear heart and amazing designer and it stretched her too so this is going to be something unusual for the both of us and it's been just so fun to work with her on this....

new things that have come in...

the purple thread:
sybil's diamonds.jpg (91020 bytes) sybil's diamonds $20.00 (complete kit with all of the supplies needed with the exception of the scissors)

lizzie kate:
4 seasons finished.jpg (76399 bytes) 4 seasons (new 4-part series that just came in and of course we are taking auto ship on these if you would like to sign up for them)
4 seasons autumn.jpg (108016 bytes) 4 seasons autumn (w/buttons) $5.50
4 seasons winter.jpg (112461 bytes) 4 seasons winter (w/buttons) $5.50
a little beach.jpg (132273 bytes) a little beach $14.00 (w/linen, beads and charm)
be who you are.jpg (170808 bytes) be who you are $9.00
if we pray.jpg (142629 bytes) boxer - if we pray $17.00 (w/linen, beads, buttons & charm)

kathy barrick
rebecca.jpg (174837 bytes) rebecca $10.00 (this is quite a gorgeous wabbit to be sure)

kitties.jpg (85427 bytes) didnot is feeling much better - the bladder stone is now gone and she is busy putting scruff la la back in her place because we know that didnot is the head of THIS family...and despite all the snarfing around - sometimes they actually like each other....but only sometimes.

thanks so much for visiting this week - thank heavens everything is back under control again and this has just lit the fire under my butt to get the new site finished and uploaded and annie has threatened to bring in heavy rope and tie me to my chair...and it's been a lesson in patience and teaching to pigs to sing and thank YOU all for being patient with the bouncing emails...if only i could have waved my personal magic wand and made it all go away...oh to be that powerful.

enjoy your weekend and enjoy the weather - yesterday afternoon hit 81 which is way way too hot way way too soon, especially with no's going to be a very ugly summer.

lois, annie, dids and scruff


march 7, 2014

it has rained...and they say it's going to rain again on monday...not enough by any stretch of the imagination but certainly better than a poke in the eye with a sharp stick!!  we will take whatever we can get at this point.  the valley is awash in peach blossoms and all the almonds have leafed to it's still very pretty here....and now that we've had some rain...there is actually some green grass in the foothills...which by now is usually dying...but it's bright and fresh and green because of the late rain....'s busy busy around kits being put together for our april event, lots of stuff being assembled for the breast cancer piece in september (it's turning out pretty cute) and a million other things and we are pleased with the results.  annie is traveling this weekend - down to northridge for son tad's last college audition - he already has been accepted at 3 colleges and northridge is the last audition...i think he wants to see if he can make if four for four...and then he has to make the decision as to where, how and why and the commitment letter is to be sent back.

so...because i'm here by myself right now (annie left a little bit early to get everything under control before they hit the road at 3:00) i had better get myself together and get this done.

samsarah design studio
easter bunny's carrot farm.jpg (76025 bytes) easter bunny's carrot farm $8.00

scissortail designs
spring trio.jpg (115417 bytes) spring trio $8.50

liberty hill
hannah birdwell.jpg (111596 bytes) hannah birdwell stitch boxe $59.00
we have preordered these and are taking reservations and liberty hill is exc ited to present the Hannah Birdwell Stitch Boxe which has been created for a 9 year old quaker girl who might have lived in early 1800 in southeastern pennsylvania.  The slid-top boxe measures approximately 8"x5'x4"high and is painted in pennsylvania style.  inside the box is a short story about hannah, a cchart to stitch her small blackwork sampler, a small handpainted wooden project ring for threads and a fragment of red wool; in the shape of a heart for pins and needles along with a piece of black ribbon to tie up the finished sampler....  it's pretty cute and we are very excited about it.  i just love liberty hill - she does beautiful work and i collect them....

amy bruecken designs:
these always make me laugh...i can't help it...and i stitch them could you not?
bunny boy.jpg (155508 bytes) little bunny boy $6.00
bunny girl.jpg (144457 bytes) little bunny girl $6.00
easter chick.jpg (122635 bytes) little easter chick $6.00
bunny egg.jpg (129199 bytes) little bunny egg $6.00

the tarts have been busy too...lori finished her blackbird box design and we put it together on's pretty beautiful...and i think she is very pleased.  truly smashing:
lori's box 1.JPG (121522 bytes)

one last thing - shepherd's bush (the fold) sent us word this week that the first kits are being assembled to  be shipped to us...and the last of our load of beautiful boxes is on the way to us from lone elm we are very ready and excited to see both boxes arrive.

took some new clips over to the rescue last sunday...was changing them out on some of the kennel gates that open easily - new girl in the "mean dogger kennel" and i decided she really wasn't talking to me about leaving her clip alone on her gate...she couldn't have meant me...and if she did...certainly i was quicker at changing out her clip than she was at chomping my finger...guess who was wrong on that exchange!!!  hoping i don't lose the nail and of course it was my left, after losing the bandaid yesterday night because of all the water and bleach we plow thru...gloves are in order - my hands are just taking the brunt of it...pinched the outside of my left hand again last night in a gate...and of course, with all the mayhem going on - we decided the inmates were running the asylum last night - hopping 5 foot fences and escaping...we had about 10 inmates running loose in the place...always wear a leash around my neck or 2 in my pocket...a girl just never knows when a leash might come in handy ;)

dudley (my new little guy) had a very long vet visit on friday...we have all the "uglies" under control now and he's going to be getting his 2nd bathie this sunday and the other doggers go to the groomer on tuesday...he's a good good boy and a smart dog and so grateful for his new crate and plush cushion and good food...we are coming up on 4 weeks and all is good and other 3 seem to have acknowledged (grudgingly) that he is here for the duration.

daylight savings change this saturday - remember to "spring forward" and don't blame me for the loss of an hour...i need that hour too...hate this - why don't they just leave it alone...wishful thinking ;)

february 28, 2014

happy happy rained on wednesday night, it's raining right now and it's supposed to rain all day and it also supposed to rain on sunday...and the almond blossom pollen is a little bit better but annie and i are sneezing, sore throats, running eyes...just really ugly and the peaches have blossomed so the orchards are the most beautiful combination of white (almonds) and glorious pink for the peaches.

dudley dooooowrong is meeting dr. mike his vet this afternoon...then a stop at home depot to see if i can find some kennel gate clips that are better than the tiny ones they use at the shelter now which are okay if you are a gnome with pencil thin fingers but for any type of male hands or regular female hands - obnixious.  we took 12 gallons of bleach with us last night and 4 huge containers of laundry soap and big lots is having a 20% off sale tomorrow nite and sunday so we are going back for another load of both products...a girl can never have too much bleach or too much laundry soap - especially if that girl volunteers at the rescue shelter ;)

so...because we have 200 things in the fire at the moment and some of the flipping CUTEST fundraising ideas for our twinkle toes walk in Dallas in november (stay tuned) and because my brain is at warp speed of 200 mph...i have projects and stuff from one end of this shop to the other and because i have to go flying out of here earlier than usual to meet bruce because 2 doggers are going to see dr. mike (nicky needs a booster shot so he's tagging on with dudley)... and because i've been in here since 6:30 and it's actually not even 10 a.m. yet and annie is up to her armpits in order we go.....

northern expressions:
shades of gold.jpg (73811 bytes) shades of gold $16.00
celtic valentine.jpg (56403 bytes) celtic valentine $10.00

prairie schooler:
one for the crowq.jpg (84941 bytes) one for the crow $9.00
where there are bees.jpg (82042 bytes) where there are bees $9.00
rabbit run.jpg (76307 bytes) rabbit run $9.00
|prairie schooler cards.jpg (64068 bytes) prairie schooler mini card collection 10 cards for $9.00

comfort.jpg (65433 bytes) comfort $11.50

terri bay needlework designs:
cross stitch lotus box.jpg (74450 bytes) the cross stitch lotus box $10.00
annie is stitching this right now and then we are doing the finishing - very wonderful!!!!  stitched inside and out.

blackbird designs:
my friend's house.jpg (84624 bytes) my friend's house (loose feathers #8) $9.00

elizabeth's needlework designs:
antique bee sampler.jpg (75360 bytes) antique bee sampler $9.00

chessie & me:
hope of spring.jpg (83096 bytes) hope of spring $12.00
this one escaped from the market update...went a'walking...

stacy nash primitives:
redwork snowflake sewing bag.jpg (58482 bytes) redwork snowflake sewing bag $12.00

cottage garden:
valentine sampler.jpg (87560 bytes) valentine sampler $10.50

little house needleworks:
cowgirl country.jpg (58383 bytes) tumbleweeds - cowgirl country $8.00

pictures because they WERE beautiful - but the rain has totally changed all of these - no more flowers on the tulip tree ;(
almond orchard.JPG (1233648 bytes) almond orchards out my car window.
daffodils.JPG (99400 bytes) dudley and i found these on one of our afternoon walks
tulip tree.JPG (87467 bytes) my valentine pressie 2 years ago...last year it had 5 flowers on it - doubled in size in a love love this tree!!!

tuesday's tarts - everybody is busy and running in 17 different directions but diane had a "finishing" moment...and we just think they are too beautiful.  she's working on the newest one for her purple thread collection (the black/white combinations)...
diane.jpg (53415 bytes) diane's purse.JPG (42204 bytes) beautiful work...and her papa adopted one of the rescue doggers too....and "dasher" has found dogger heaven with her dad...they are good good companions...

so...that's it...keep good thoughts for our this point any drops of moisture go in the "plus" column - we are just hoping that the summer is not a scorcher - it's going to be a gruesome year and this little bit of water is a huge help but not enough to ease anything...gruesome, gruesome....

thanks for visiting - have a great weekend and we will see you all soon.

february 12, 2014

question??  why is it that "you-know-what" always happens when you are trying to get out of town?  - don't answer - i already know the answer - rhetorical question at best....

yes, the needlepress book has been ordered; praiseworthy stitches - taken care of; la d da - taken care of; new linens ordered; new threads ordered; lists made; emails already sent; suitcases packed; out the door tomorrow a.m. at 6:15 to pick up annie so hang with us - it's all coming back in priority boxes or suitcases or both and i will be doing the market update on monday but i can't do market justice (and this is the last nashville) and post from my tablet or phone - it just doesn't work for me and i owe you all more than that.

so...didnot has a bladder stone and that involved a vet visit on monday afternoon and of course by the end of the day - he's running 45 minutes a full Rx of amoxi and vet food which runs a minimum of $900 per pound (you know i'm kidding) we are tending to didnot...but of course the amoxi is upsetting her tummy and thus up comes the $900 p/pound food...and so the dance continues.  mr. bear is assigned to administer the amoxi while we are gone and i wish i had a camera here because he and didnot butting heads over administration of that amoxi would be worth the price of admission...we shall see who prevails. is very dangerous to volunteer at the no-kill is very dudley doooooo-wrong who came home on sunday to his forever home after being adopted (out from under me because the only person who didn't know i was adopting him worked sunday the 2nd) by an idiot and then being turned back in because as a new dog she left him uncrated, un-doggie door access, un-restricted in the house for 12 hours while she went to work and got furious at him because he made a "mess" and had "bad habits" - so she returned him.  well, we've had dudley since sunday afternoon - he had one accident which was my fault - he knows the doggie door, he knows the crate at night and doesn't make a peep, he loves his mama's cooking, he loves walking but doesn't quite understand yet that although mama walks very fast - he needs to slow down a little bit, is a bit of a bandit - taking the shoe out of the closet and putting it by my chair in the family room or in one of the beds but never chews, nicky is now the lead dogger and daisy is still letting him know that she is a "lady" and does not appreciate being sniffed and somewhere somebody has taught him to "sit".  

in three days he is learning the ropes very quickly and is very happy and i call him curious george because everything is an adventure and bruce thinks he's a "good dogger" so i guess it's a win-win for all of us. dad brought him down for a quick visit yesterday so the tarts could meet him...and annie held him so i could get a good picture...the tail never stops wagging...  we think he's "poo with a little cocker mixed in"...

annie & duds.JPG (85118 bytes) dudley.jpg (90426 bytes) duds.jpg (106585 bytes) duds2.jpg (94745 bytes)

we'll see you back here on monday and thanks for visiting - we look forward to "seeing you soon".  

nashville - here we come.


february 7, 2014

a little stressful this week but lots of good on lots of different levels so i'm going to take the GREAT with the stress and tiredness and consider my plate is full of blessings.

we are leaving a week from yesterday for the last nashville market...we are going to bring back good stuff...there is new linen from weeks dye works in 32 and 36 counts - in 10 neutral colors...already ordered...32 on the way and 36 will come as soon as the base fabric arrives in the colors of thread from gentle arts and weeks dye works and now that classic colors has straightened out the mess at the former crescent colours - ronnie williams is well on the road to being totally up to snuff and we will be able to get belle soie again...he has worked very hard and i am so grateful he took this on...he's a hard worker and his mama and papa raised him right - williams - why yes, he's diane williams' son - little house needleworks and country cottage's brother...keeping it all in the family...

surprise kits, lots of good stuff but until i get it home with me - i won't post pictures because those just don't "do it" for we are coming home sunday night 02/16 and i will be writing the market report and posting it on monday the 17th and annie will be answering the phone for me...  done it this way since 1997 and i'm way too old and crabby to change now - besides - i've almost got this down to a science by this point in time ;)

but, this week - we have some pretty cute stuff that came in...and so, because it's late friday afternoon and because i've got a ton of stuff to do before i leave and then i have an errand on the way it is...

drawn thread:
winter garden.jpg (75595 bytes) the winter garden $12.00
winter jumble.jpg (96696 bytes) the winter jumble with beads/buttons $11.00
alphabet ornaments two.jpg (105351 bytes) alphabet ornaments two (e f g & h) w/beads & buttons) $13.00

threadwork primitives:
quaker friends.jpg (55386 bytes) quaker friends $10.00

little house needleworks:
hands to work.jpg (65244 bytes) hands to work $6.00

just nan:
it's snowing men.jpg (110480 bytes) it's snowing men (w/embellishments) $14.50
oh deer!!!.jpg (96365 bytes) oh deer! (w/embellishments) $13.00
|dazzling deer pin.jpg (48923 bytes) dazzling deer pin $10.50 (we're limited on these)
little princess snow.jpg (102142 bytes) little princess snow (w/all the goodies including the crown) $13.00

with thy needle and thread:
mary valentine's handworke.jpg (101041 bytes) mary valentine's handework $15.00
(get the boxes quick - i know target & walmart has them) 1.75 oz. whitman's chocolate heart box & 4.75 oz whitman's chocolates red foil heart box)  it's really a sweet little set.

so...the day (at least here) comes to an's raining here and should be for at least 3 days - the storm (on the radar) covers almost the entire state and it's dropping snow up in the sierras (the radar map is a bright pink up there)...anything is a help at this point - except if it lulls people into thinking we are in anything but a horrible drought - so i gladly relish being a duck this weekend...will come and work tomorrow and probably until at least 6 tomorrow night, do some serious scampering tomorrow night and sunday and then hit it hard for 3 days before we leave early thursday morning....

so...a couple more hours here, then errands (desperately need serger thread) and then home to sink into a stupor and listen to the rain on the skylights and be very glad that bear and i got 5 cubic yards of arbor mulch spread last weekend because that rain is going to seep thru all that mulch and stay in the ground a lot longer and help my poor suffering sequoia trees...and then i'll start it all over again in the is good and i am renewed and inspired and will share some very fun news with you next time we visit...

enjoy your weekend...and it's a 3 day weekend for most safe, be smart and stay warm...  YAHOO...IT'S RAINING and it's the olympics...all good.

annie, the spoiled cats and me.

january 30, 2014

this is going to be very quick because i'm heading out to do rescue volunteer work in a few minutes...but, OF COURSE we are going to market and of course we are going to bring back some wonderful market only kits - in fact - we have already preordered this one:

beekeeper.jpg (68815 bytes)  the beekeeper by plum street sampler $44.00
comes complete with threads, chart & fibers.  we have a list started for this one and a few others that i know about but am sworn to secrecy and i never kiss and if you are interested in this one...let me know and we'll add you to our list(s)...

i'm scampering...have spent a great deal of time on the computer today and my eyes are just as square as can be...and my head hurts...but there are doggers that need clean kennels and massive piles of laundry that need to be done and happy dogs are good dogs and it makes for good feelings doing for others...last week at the end of our 3 hours - we were asked if we could trek over to the vet in the next town south and pick up a litter of 4 australian shepherd/terrier mix pups that had been neutered...well, all tails and paws...3 fit in the carrier and the 4th had to ride on my lap while bruce drove...they came back to the rescue place and are up for adoption...way too cute...  it just makes it all worth while.  

i'll try and get more up tomorrow...we are so very excited about nashville this year and we leave on thursday, february 13th...sad and happy all at the same time...but it's going to be a grand market.

back soon and thanks!!!!!

january 23, 2014

no rain yet, no rain in sight, newspaper making noises about drought (seriously), fires in southern california, newspaper suggesting a good alternative to drought is to 1) purchase new toilets and 2) buy a new washing machine...(again, seriously??) and those two "tips" and 5 other equally helpful suggestions and here we go.  on the other hand the midwest is getting slammed and battered and snowed upon and we would so love to have some of that weather...i would even start quacking like a duck if we got some just keeps getting more scary every day that goes by with no moisture.

we have new things, we are 3 weeks off leaving for the last nashville market, we are excited and sad at the same time, the weather is quite up and down there too and annie and i discussed packing the basics early and then, depending on climate, making coat/shoe choices as we get closer in.  we shall have to see how all this works out.

i did some more housekeeping this week and found a few more "kits" that need to find homes...and the "poof theory" but they are cute and everybody loved them...

 acorn book 2.JPG (46920 bytes) acorn book.JPG (41702 bytes) acorn needlebook kit $15.00
includes all the linen, interfacing, chart, finishing instructions, overdyed threads, buttons, ribbon, felt, buttons, lining fabric, etc.

a bee's gathering.jpg (42544 bytes) wpe5.jpg (9583 bytes)  threadwork primitives a bee's gathering kit $30.00  (just the chart alone retails for $10.00)  SOLD OUT
hand-dyed linen for front and inside, cotton flannel, 2 full skeins of sampler threads and 1/2 skein of WDW threads, hand-dyed twill tape, buttons, little safety pins, brown felt, etc per the picture and my finishing instructions.  we only have three of these left.

now...on to the few new things that have arrived this last week:

samsarah design studio:
free range roosters.jpg (49454 bytes) free range roosters $8.00
love these - tart lori has finished some of the hearts from last month and they are just cute as can be...and quick compared to the full calendar pieces.

blackbird designs:
country life, the.jpg (111628 bytes) a country life $9.00
loose feathers abecedarian series #7

amy bruecken designs:
little snow friend.jpg (68042 bytes) little snow friend $6.00
mitten man.jpg (70623 bytes) mitten man $6.00
love this entire series and i am going to stitch each and every one of them...they just make me laugh...

beehive needleworks:
millicent hartley pin pillow.jpg (42248 bytes) millicent hartley pin pillow $11.00

ink circles:
turrets and town.jpg (72189 bytes) turrets and town $10.00
this chart just intrigues me...i do not like the fabric it was stitched on (sorry) but i just love the geometry of this piece and with a great black or dark color thread it would look just spectacular on most any color of "slightly" mottled would be stunning.

so there is the day...we are heading over this evening to do our rescue volunteer work...and then home and i'll get some stitching done tonight...or something in the many piles and baskets that i have piled around my chair.

we are busy working on the 2014 BC piece...assembling stuff and figuring out what we will be's the news - it will consist of a fabric pre-made tray (moda fabric), a spool pincushion (tiny) with matching pins and wrapped with wool felt, a steel ruler in a matching wool felt sleeve, a treasure bag, a needle book with stitching on the front and back and lined with the matching fabric that constructs the tray, a "ruler fob" to hang from the hole in the ruler and finally a beaded wooden laying tool.  we are quite excited about it and i will have some pictures of the fabric next week...time just got away from me this week.

weekend work - walking and doing acute yard clean-up and putting down weed cloth because i'm having 5 yards of arborist chips delivered sometime next week - anything that will help keep the moisture in the ground over the summer months...but at this point - i'll do anything - i actually have some green shoots and green growth on my poor stressed redwoods so i think i have won that battle but the jury is still out.  fingers are crossed...

have a good one and thanks for visiting this week - we so appreciate it and thank you very much.

lgm, annie, didnot and scruff la la 

january 16, 2014

and because my brain sometimes are the two items that were left sitting on my desk at the end of the update a few hours ago:

these two items will be prefaced by the fact that these are "free patterns".  we are not selling the free patterns - we are selling the "kits" which will totally complete the items as shown and the kits include the free pattern.  these are left over from the last retreat and i have a limited number of each because we are cleaning house and once they are know the drill...POOF!!!

BB abc.jpg (48008 bytes) blackbird design now i know my abc's $15.00
kit includes 30 count linen, hand-dyed cotton threads, rickrack, backing fabric, interfacing, little red pins and MY finishing instructions.

january 16, 2014

unfortunately the weather here is beautiful in the afternoons - 68-70 degrees for the next million days it seems - i wish it would rain (hard) from now until at least april and i wish all the snow that fell in the midwest 2 weeks ago would fall up in our sierras...california is right on the edge of year 4 with no rain...i'm considering this drought - my 5 redwood trees in the back yard have been on soaker hose medication for 4 days for  each stand of trees and i'm moving over to the stand of birch trees this weekend.  because of the drought, farmers have been sinking deeper and deeper wells for irrigation on the east side where there are no irrigation canals - they planted acres and acres of almond trees because almonds are a huge $$ maker but they didn't make arrangements to water while the wells are getting sunk and re-dug deeper and deeper and lowering the water table...all the trees are being stressed out to the max because they can't reach water and the simple process of turning on sprinklers to water the lawns isn't enough to sustain them.  i am on a personal campaign to save my 5 redwood trees and 3 birch trees...  we'll see how i do.  having come from marin county and losing front and back yards twice during the course of 2 droughts - i guess it makes me very sensitive to it...and to this day i still turn off the water when i brush my teeth - it's habit - hose doesn't run when i wash my car - have a nozzle on the hose...just silly things like that because we lived thru it...  i fear it is going to get scary here but the state government isn't calling a drought yet because it will just set off a huge crisis mode.

there are already water districts to the north of us that feed off of folsom lake east of sacramento that are ready to propose no yard watering at all because at this point they will barely have enough water to deal with "inside the house".  folsom lake is very very low, don pedro is very very low as is the san luis reservoir and all of those as well as the snow pack and the rivers provide this valley their water...and there is NO SNOW in the sierras right now - zip, zero, nada...and honestly i think this is the worst it's been in the last 4 years.  scary, scary, scary...  annie and i are going to do rain dances and barring that - if we both wash cars and get bear to wash his car - maybe it will rain...maybe.

getting ready for nashville...we leave in 4 weeks - we are excited and the piles are being made...stickers, notebooks, bags, pricing gun, tape - annie is the wizard of the "market bag" and she steers me where i need to go...we've been doing this now together for a long time...

samsarah designs
10 x the fun - happy hearts.jpg (43606 bytes) ten x the fun - happy hearts $8.00
we are having these and most of the tarts are finishing up with the original calendar set - tres cute!!!

carolyn manning designs (CM)
my heart is filled with flowers.jpg (75527 bytes) my heart is filled with flowers $7.50
this picture doesn't even remotely do this piece is all done in dmc and is so pretty - original is shown on plum blossom which is a pinky/mauvey colored is just too sweet.

shepherd's bush
valentine trifles.jpg (62282 bytes) valentine trifles $8.00
we just love these - so quick and so very sweet.

shakespeare's peddler
passport pincushion.jpg (52632 bytes) passport pincushion $12.00
there is a sheet of motifs for you use and this could be made into a million separate and different things...i've got a bazillion ideas for this one...chenille or rick rack around the edge...and what a perfect place for stray wonderful buttons and pins that you don't know what to do with - love it!!!

lizzie kate
LK four seasons.jpg (50055 bytes) 4 seasons collage - spring and summer have been released - is this just toooooooo cute!!!
LK spring.jpg (62673 bytes) spring (w/tiny buttons) $5.50
LK summer.jpg (58583 bytes) summer (w/tiny buttons) $5.50
snowy string.jpg (47477 bytes) snowy string $5.00
let them be small.jpg (79560 bytes) let them be small $9.00
the lord is good boxer.jpg (71814 bytes) the lord is good boxer (fabric & beads) $17.00

our tuesday tarts have been quite busy too - both shann and diane are finishing fools and we will have more in a couple of days...and i might have a few of my own...
shann's gazing ball box 01-14.JPG (71855 bytes) gazing balls - the box was painted and lined and then the stitching mounted on the top and embellished...and that is twisted wire holding those antique silver balls at such quirky angles - pretty swell.

these are diane's things...pretty swell too!!!
diane's box 01-14.JPG (81705 bytes) diane's inside box 01-14.JPG (57731 bytes) this is the inside and the outside of belinda karls-nace's (blue ribbon designs) piece that she did as a fundraiser in 2013 to help fund her donations to walk the SGK 3day as part of team twinkle toes.  i painted and lined the boxes for everybody here - and dine stitched and finished the entire thing, finished the smalls and mounted the outside top piece and embellished turned out just beautifully!!!
diane's button bowl 01-14.JPG (49072 bytes) she did a tiny button bowl and embellished it with beads...
diane's little stuff 01-14.JPG (62840 bytes) she also finished up a mill hill piece, one of those dear little sleighs and then mounted a stuffed pincushion on a hand-painted and distressed box...  closer look at the box/pincushion below - the box almost looks like an old cheese box...
diane's pincushion box 01-14.JPG (48883 bytes)

this is a pile of dear little pin tuffets that she made - backed them with tiny scraps of silk that were in her stash and made the little heart "drop" to the left
diane's pincushions, etc 01-14.JPG (66321 bytes)

our tarts are very clever and very innovative...and i think honestly they are leaving their "teacher" in the dust at this point - and it is always soooooo much fun to see what is coming out of whatever bag on tuesday mornings...a very talented and free-thinking bunch of stitchers.

we have a football game to win on sunday - it's a very important one - and i have a pile of things to do "during" so i can either yell and scream or hide my eyes - whatever is appropriate at the trying to get some walking in on saturday and tonight we are going over to wags and whiskers rescue to do some volunteer work - bruce and i are attacking a very large supply room that desperately needs cleaning and organization - and the "shelter bag" is packed and in the garage ready to go - cleaning supplies, rubber gloves, rags, etc...and it will be spiffy (or pretty close to spiffy) by the time we leave this evening.

we are excited about the new things coming from nashville, we have more housecleaning to do and there are 3 sets of racks in the "back" of this store (along with a pile of finishing) that will garner my attention tomorrow and most of next week.  it just never seems to stop and as soon as we get one "mess" cleaned up - there is another pile to take care of.  

the "tray" pieces for the 2014 breast cancer piece are all bonded and cut out and we are at the point where we need to bond one more piece to one side of the fabric and then we can start sewing the trays together...we are excited.

spend my 17th year diagnosis date tomorrow morning having a celebratory mammogram...can't think of a better way to celebrate those 17 years - early appointment and then back here for more shoveling and computer for visiting...and we'll be back very soon.

january 9, 2014

spit, polished, cleaned, scrubbed, deleted, arranged, re-arranged, dumped, scrubbed some more, removed, added, built, destroyed, re-built:  all accomplished within the last 36 hours - now that the "web house" is cleaned, i have added some stuff about the workshops in april and september, started gathering things for market in nashville in 5 weeks, annie has been ironing fabric for the 2014 BC piece and tomorrow i am going to now work on the new web site because i really didn't want to "pack the dirt and the dust bunnies" and move them to a new house - so this house had to be cleaned first...and clean it i did.

now, because my eyes turn square after about 4 hours on the computer, i will spend the day tomorrow working on the new site and then the rest of the time cutting fabric into pieces - because as part of the 2014 BC piece - we are making wonderful little trays to put your things in - and i have another pile of goodies at home that get worked on during football games - felt balls, ribbons, pins, spools, etc. that will be part of this kit too.  i am also getting some help from a very, very dear friend and i will put up some moda fabric swatches in the next couple of weeks...totally different from last years and far more "graphic" than sweet but i think it's going to be quite fun and wonderful.

we are also working on a cute little fundraiser for the 3day walk - as soon as the 3 day gets all the glitches straightened out - apparently their new program that has been installed does not like IE (internet explorer) and they are having a devil of a time getting that personal URL is one that happened to fall into the crack (at this point that crack is as deep as the grand canyon) and we are struggling to get me up the canyon walls and back on high ground again - unfortunately all i can do is wait until that happens...but it kind of slows down communication, etc. with the 3day team...i will be patient.

the tuesday tarts have been challenged while i was away...and they are now furiously stitching "old" stuff - nothing new can be purchased OR started until the first of february because the entire month of january is being spent finishing things that were previously started.  after seeing everybody on tuesday - the giggle was how many things got started the week between christmas and new years so they would qualify for the "old" category...made me giggle...those women are pretty cagey.

shepherd's bush's the fold is perking along quite well, our lists are made and numbers turned in (all of which can and have been adjusted) and we are very anxiously awaiting for this program to start in will be so much fun.

while bruce and i were away - the doggers stayed with their auntie annie and spent 15 days at "camp stone" and absolutely had the time of their lives.  they played so hard and had such a good time that both boys got plopped in the sink and given bathies on saturday when they came home - they were so bad they needed a "pre" bath before going to in for their real bathies at the groomers on tuesday - i'm telling you - that was a mighty stinky crew.

anyway...we are waiting for new things to arrive, i am making great headway on the giant list of things that needs doing around here - another year has launched, we are desperately in need of rain (i truly believe that california is about 4 years into an ugly drought and it will not be pretty around here this summer if we don't get some of that rainy stuff) and  we have another football game to get thru this sunday in's been a nerve wrecking end of season for us and playoffs make me just a little bit insane.  

we are looking forward to a new hoffman listing tomorrow, have some more pictures to take tomorrow as well and some other things that i'm whacking around with on the computer...but right now i'm out of here - have to head home so i can go fill up a bag at office depot.  mid west and east - stay safe and warm and out of harm's way - it's just been ugly for you all and i can't even imagine - i would have been dead from the cold weeks ago...

thanks for visiting...we appreciate you and thank you for coming.

january 8, 2014

don't be horrified...we're still here - i'm doing major housekeeping on the website, dust bunnies, filing, moving, putting away, dusting, throwing out and working on the new website all at the same time...everything from last year is at the links above...and i'll have more tomorrow.  are all your holiday decorations down and put away???  be back in a little bit!!!

we are also getting ready for the very last nashville market the middle of february.  The powers that be are shutting down the 2 remaining hotel shows (nashville in february and the wholesale mid-west market in the fall) thus there will be only "big box convention" and on-line type shows available to business owners.  we are very sad about the loss of the nashville market - we have attended every single one of them...but the world is a changing place and thus...i guess these changes are necessary (albeit distasteful to us).  


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