Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Not so secret now

It's wonderful to be able to create handmade gifts for your loved ones.  But sometimes that old saying "your eyes are bigger than your stomach" should be re-written to apply to quilting (or sewing,  knitting, painting or woodworking or where ever your talent might lie!) .  There are always so many things I'd like to make, especially at Christmastime. Most of them remain ideas floating around in my head and some of them are lanquishing on the floor of the sewing room closet.  But look!  I did get a few projects done! 

On one of our trips this fall, I found a book by Gudrun Erla called Fast & Furious Quilting As You Go .  These little quilts were fun to put together and I was able to whip them out pretty fast for our grandsons (and expected grandson!).

One other bigger project completed was this twin size quilt I made for our son and his wife.  After he made the comment recently that I'm always making things for the girls and the babies but that I've never made him anything I decided I'd better get busy!  I found a kit on Ebay using Moda's Pine Creek Crossing fabrics.  It has a northwoods look to it and some of the fabrics even have bears and moose (s?) on them in honor of their recent trip to Alaska.  Though it's not big enough for their bed it will be nice to curl up with on the couch in the  basement family room.   I used a new machine quilter for this one and I was quite pleased with her work. 

So these are some of the "secret" projects I've been working on.  Now it's going to be time to start another baby quilt! This one won't be quite so secret though.   J and I looked at fabrics last weekend and we both like the Goodnight Monkey and Funky Monkey fabrics by Erin Michael but there are a lot of cute little baby boy fabrics available now.  Another quilt shop trip might be in my future! 


Monday, December 28, 2009

The Best Gift....Ever!

Okay - you'll have to indulge me this once. If you stopped by to see a travel or craft related post, you'll not find that  here today.    Just the highlight of Christmas week here at our house.  These two little boy cousins met for the first time and  I tried all weekend to get a good photo  of them together.  Both are adorable, but also very active little boys so this is the best I could do.   

The little peanut came to Grammie's in his cute reindeer pj's.  Little J had the cutest little sweater vest and looked very much the big brother he soon will be.

Peanut was awed by his cousin.  J loves Dora the Explorer and loved his new toothbrush Santa left in his stocking.

But he loves his little cousin enough to give him a "brotherly" kiss.

And I think Peanut was just as excited to meet a new pal!

With his own version of "brotherly" love! 

Leap Frog for the little cousin.

And Elmo for the toddler cousin!

They were both so cute opening all their gifts but it pretty much took us all day with  breaks for bottles, naps, snacks and diaper changes.  There may have been some gifts for the older kids too!  In fact, the big boys had a blast playing with their remote control helicopters and everyone enjoyed the cookies, candy and other snacks that kept us going until an early supper.

Boys with toys!

Thank you  all for coming home for Christmas!  The best gift .... ever!

And just because this is my blog and I can post cute pictures of adorable little grandsons if I choose too!

Our best wishes for a Happy New Year from our family to yours! 

Monday, December 21, 2009

My Christmas Present!

Let me show you my Christmas present!  Our own version of the Craftsman style kitchen  might have taken us nearly three years to complete, but I'm am very pleased with how it turned out!

I'm still in the Christmas countdown mode, but since I'm in between cookie baking sessions and the wrapping paper has been put away for a bit, I thought we should try to get some good photos.

All of the lower cabinets have roll out shelves with heavy duty drawer slides.  The drawers are self closing.

We removed the built in pantry and added this huge pantry cabinet with roll out shelves.  No more lost cans of food at the back of the cabinet!  I still have to get my little step stool out to see what's on the top shelf though. 

Custom made crown mouldings.  We purchased a sheet of Mica to use in the opening of the upper cabinets instead of glass. 

Stainless steel sink with goose neck Delta faucet.

Antique bronze hardware.  Notice the beautiful grain in the quarter-sawn white oak with "tiger flake"? Not really visible here but the veneers on the doors are all matched. 

Tile backsplash.  Love it! Recessed LED lights under the upper cabinets.  Stainless steel GE Cafe' microwave and dual fuel range. I hadn't cook with gas in years, but really am enjoying the transition from electric. The refrigerator is GE Profile.  We didn't replace our Sears dishwasher but still plan on ordering a stainless steel front panel so it will match.

Also love the Cambria (quartz) counters!  The pendant lights are new, but we're still looking for a matching ceiling fixture.  I still need to do some more decorating, but that will wait until after the first of the year.

Thank you Santa!  I love it!
Merry Christmas! 

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Contrary to what you might think...

This little blog has not been permanently abandoned.  Just a temporary blogging break while "real life" takes priority.   As it is for most of you, this is a busy time here at our house.  And as always, I procrasinate on some things that every year I swear I'll get done earlier.  You'd think that after almost thirty-five years (yikes! really?!) I've have this Christmas holiday routine figured out! 

This is the first time I think I've put up two Christmas trees.  This is the new little (six foot) pencil tree that's residing in the corner of the kitchen.  The colors don't show up very well here, but it is bronze, brown and gold. Love it!  Since it is such a pain to move around, the bigger tree stayed downstairs in the basement family room.  

I have full intentions of taking some nice photos of the new kitchen.  It is finally complete! YEA!  There is one stray wall cabinet yet to remove and a wall to repaint, but everything else is done.  Dear Hubby has done a magnificent job!  I am so lucky to have such a talented carpenter/woodworker living under the same roof!  It's a shame that right now it looks like Santa's workshop exploded on the counter. 

From one project to the next, D has been working on getting the old cabinets installed in the basement bar/kitchen.  Just a little plumbing and the bar top(not shown here) to finish this one up.  B already has put in a request to use my two ovens and ample counter space for a cookie baking day. 

This is all for now.  I don't know if  I'll get back here to post again before Christmas,  but Happy Holiday Preparations to you all!