He knows my name!

My life verse: "I will give you the treasures of darkness And hidden riches of secret places, That you may know that I, the Lord, Who call you by your name, Am the God of Israel." (Isaiah 45:3). For me, "the treasures of darkness" has been the medically-treated depression that I have suffered off and on with for years. More than anything else in my life, I think this has made me realize how much my Savior loves me and has deepened my relationship with God. The "hidden riches of secret places" are my wonderful family and this fabulous craft--tatting! I thank God for both!
I think it is awesome that God knows my name! Did you know that He knows yours?

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

ShuttleSmith Doily

This is a catch-up post...things I have done that I haven't blogged about.

Last fall, a lady in from the Lacemakers Guild of Oklahoma shared a free pattern with me that she had picked up at a Kansas retreat.  I have lost the pattern since--so I don't know the correct name for it, but the designer is Karen Bovard (the ShuttleSmith --  http://www.theshuttlesmith.com/   I used scraps of DMC size 5 to make it.  I wish I had "planned" my colors, instead of just playing "hit and miss."  I think it would have looked much better..

I understand Karen Bovard is coming to our guild next year to do a weekend workshop!!   

    


Nancy Tracy of Be-stitched (http://www.be-stitched.com) offers a free pattern each month.  For the last several years, some of the month's patterns have been the rows to a beautiful doily.  These are the first three rows of the Tatted 2016 Doily.  I am doing it in Lizbeth, size 20, #129, Purple Splendor and #642, Lilac, med.





My aunt, an excellent knitter,  has done so much over the years to encourage my tatting!   I made this to go around her name plate by her apartment door in the retirement home. The edging is from Tatting with Beads by Rosemarie Peel and was done in Lizbeth, Size 20, #638 Christmas Green.   It was sandwiched between two pieces of quilter's template plastic to help give it stability.


I taught my "Their Five Year Mission" pattern at guild on Saturday. I am really enjoying teaching tatting!  Thank you to my students who had a lot of patience with me!

It seems like I have had a health "step back" about once a week since the first week of June.  Every time that I think I am doing good, pneumonia sneaks back in to say, "HI!"--I wish it would say "Goodbye" for good!

Friday, July 1, 2016

Altoid tins and baskets.

Blogger and I are not getting along!  During the posting of some comments on my last post, I accidentally deleted a whole lot of comments from current and past posts.  A quick check on the internet shows that they are not retrievable.  I am sorry!


A friend of mine thinks this is the "best thing since sliced bread" and I "must share it!"  So...I usually buy my shuttles in pairs and I store the pairs in Altoid tins.  (The tins all have dark green painted lids, are lined inside with green felt and have a sticker on the side that identifies the shuttles.)  Earlier this winter, my son cut out pieces of foamcore board for me.  I used hot glue to cover these pieces with colored fun foam. Then I hung them on the side of my ArtBin Super Satchel Cube with Command Hooks.  The sideways tins are empty tins, because those shuttles are in use on a project.  (I don't really have that many"expensive" shuttles--many of these are moonlits that I decorated)


 

 I was searching Pinterest for things that would come in handy when my three wonderful grandchildren were at our house, and I came across this idea for car trips.  I wish I had pinned it so that I could give someone credit.  It is wonderful.  Get a suction cup basket (the ones in the kitchen section at Walmart would not stick well, however the ones in the bathroom section stuck fantastically!) and use it on your window when you are a passenger in the car to hold your tatting items (and cell phone!).  I did this on our Finger Lakes trip, and it is now a "must have" when I am in the car.
Warning:  Have the driver tell you before they unroll the window--so you can remove the basket!When I bought the basket, my husband really thought that I was wasting money... but after seeing it in use, he commented, "hey, that really works!"--Unfortunately he made this comment just as he hit the button to roll down the windows.  As the window lowered, it popped the suction cups and the basket flew across the van, just missing my husband's head and landed in his lap! 
FYI, the Pinterest post suggested a much larger basket for holding a drink and food.  

Thursday, June 30, 2016

Tatting Press


9:OO this evening-- ATTENTION PLEASE -- I JUST ACCIDENTALLY DELETED A WHOLE LOT OF COMMENTS FROM THIS POST AND OTHERS!  According to a quick check on the internet--I cannot retrieve them.  I AM SORRY! 


 I can't believe I have never shared this!  A couple of years ago, a dear friend--Jan Garrett made me a tatting press out of a book.  I have seen them on Pinterest, but they have always been round, and just didn't look like they would meet my needs.  When Jan gave me this--I thought it was a wonderful, sweet gift--that I would never use :(
Boy was I wrong!  I use it all the time--it saves pinning things out to see how they will look between rounds, and keeps edgings, motifs, and doilies looking nice as you do them!  Here are a few pictures of my WONDERFUL tatting press.






 The front has a very cute "quilt" like design cross-stitched TURTLE!!!










 




The book itself was covered in some type of brown cloth?  It is very stiff!  
There are ribbons on the front and back to tie the press closed.




 

This "pressing area" is padded.  That helps press the tatting, but also allows you to pin things down as well!


Hmmm, wonder what those little green things are on the fabric?  :)






An edging I am working on.  One of those things that I'm not sure I will ever finish because it is going so slowly.










This area is only slightly padded.  I have taken use of this are to store small completed motifs until I need them on a larger project.  











I love the pocket!  I can store the patterns in there, and they don't get lost.





THANK YOU AGAIN, JAN!! 

9:OO this evening-- ATTENTION PLEASE -- I JUST ACCIDENTALLY DELETED A WHOLE LOT OF COMMENTS FROM THIS POST AND OTHERS!  According to a quick check on the internet--I cannot retrieve them.  I AM SORRY!

Friday, June 24, 2016

Finger Lakes 2016--Part 4

Sunday's Classes and Confessions!

Sun day morning, I had signed up for Ruth Perry's Tad E. Bear class.  Once again, with excitement, I had my shuttles wound and was eagerly waiting for class to start....  Then, I started getting sleepy!  We came close to a repeat of my previous class, except this time I was awake long enough to complete the head of my little bear.  Ruth, came around individually and showed us how she pinned the celtic knot that created the head.  It is amazing how just the position of the pins she used help create a perfect celtic knot!  The bear's head is all I got done...I apologized then, and I'm still apologizing now--I wish I had known that I would be uncontrollably sleeping--someone else could have had my seat in the class!


I never have finished my Tad E. Bear...I think he will go into my permanent UFO pile.  However, I did get lots of practice doing the celtic knots when I did the Trefoil Knot Celtic Edging from the book, Celtic Tatting Knots and Patterns by Rozella F.Linden (Ruth's pen name).  I can't remember where I got the beautiful green hand-dyed thread but it was just perfect for this special project.

I recently inherited my mother's jewelry box (she passed away in 1979.)  The box was not in good condition at all.  The inside satin fabric was rotting, and all the fuzz was off of the velvet.  The outside was no longer the pristine white that I remembered.  I redid the box inside and out.  I get a lovely feeling inside, knowing that I am using something that was special to my mother. 


After eating a wonderful lunch, prepared by Karey Solomon so as to avoid all my food triggers--I don't know how she does everything she does--she is superwoman!  Thank you so much, Karey!...it was once again time for class.

 Here is where I really need to grovel.   The time for our lunch break was over, I had let time slip away from me...I needed to set
up for class and run to the restroom.  There were a few (two?  three?)  ladies sitting in the area where I was to teach class.   I don't know what I said, or how I said it--but I told them to move as I sat my things down by the corner seat.  In the bathroom, it struck me that I must go back and apologize for the attitude and brusqueness with which I had -- not asked as I should have, but told them--to move.  It was so rude and totally unacceptable!.  I do so wish I knew who the ladies were that were sitting at the end of the table where I was to have class, they were gone when I returned.  I know how just a few words from someone can ruin your day, or your event--I pray that my words did not put a damper on these ladies' experience at Finger Lakes!  If you were one of these ladies, I do apologize!  Please forgive me! 

Once again, I got to teach my Wandering Through the Woods edging--this time I had two students.  I really enjoyed teaching at Finger Lakes.  It is so exciting to be able to share your knowledge and help someone else learn a technique! 

All too soon, the conference was over.  The vendors were packing up, and time to purchase those necessary tatting threads and tools was over.  Dear, sweet friends that you look so forward to seeing in person each year, were getting in their cars and heading out away from Lodi.  It was time for Sue, Cynthia and I to start tracing our route back to Oklahoma.

The highlight of the return trip was the evening at Tamie's in Kentucky.  OH!! the dinner that she fixed us! She is an absolutely wonderful cook!  We had wonderful meat, sweet potatoes, mushrooms, rolls (the only item on the table she didn't make from scratch)--the table was overflowing with food.  She made a "Hawaiian Cole Slaw" that was just out of this world!  I can't describe how tasty and delicious everything was--we just ate and ate, and ate some more!!

Then, what a neat surprise!  Tamie had a pair of wooden turtle shuttles for me!  How cool is that?  I got to use them as we sat around the table trying different threads.  Tammi had SO many different varieties, from so amany different manufacturers.  It was so much fun! Once I got home, I discovered that I couldn't tell which shuttle was which--so I carefullyu traced the turtles with some fine-lined permanent magic markers.

As it seeing Tamie isn't enough--I get to see Asia, Tamie's dog.  I am a cat person who grew up with the notion that dogs belonged "outside."  Asia is so very well trained and loving!  Every time that I am around this little bundle of joy and energy--I come away wanting, a tiny, inside dog just like her!
     . 
Finally back to Oklahoma, late on Tuesday night!  One of our very first stops on the road trip had been at the Amish Cheese House, about 35 minutes from my house.  Cynthia had bought a pound of fudge there (1/4 lb. of four different kinds!)...and it had been missing the rest of the trip.  Surely when we unpacked we would find it!  No.... it was a mystery!  A week later, when unpacking a paper box full of smaller boxes of chips and crackers--I found the missing box of fudge stuck between two identically sized boxes of butter crackers.  It is in my freezer, I keep telling Cynthia that she has to come visit me, or I will eat all the fudge myself!

Thank you for joining me as I relived Finger Lakes 2016.  This year  was so wonderful and different.  There were the super-fantastic stops at Tammi's, the joy of Sue and Cyn's company on the trip, the fact that I taught two classes (and slept through two classes!) --  I can't wait for Finger Lakes 2017--"Everything's coming up Roses!"

Personal note:  The first two weeks of June were supposed to be Christian Youth in Action where I am a teacher and evaluator.  My dear husband goes and works from 6a.m.-10p.m cooking for the whole group.  However, on Day 6--I got pneumonia again.  My oxygen level was 86 when they got me into the ER.  No more CYIA for me this year, instead I spent three days in the hospital.  I am not "bouncing back" very fast, but seem to be slowly  and steadily recuperating.                                                                                 

Friday, June 3, 2016

Finger Lakes 2016--Part 3



“Classes and Confessions”

I’m not sure where to start….Confession #1, (This one is not really Finger Lakes related!)  For a long time, “Blogger” has mystified me and the whole process has been trial and error.  My husband, who teaches programming classes, Office (Computer programs) Classes, and Computer Repair—knows quote: “nothing about blogs.”  Enter the wonderful, extremely patient and giving, Muskaan (she has a fantastic blog, FULL of wonderful tatting knowledge, patterns and tips—http://tipsaroundthehome.blogspot.in/) who contacted me via email and politely told me that she couldn’t find a link to any of my pdf’s.  I wrote back and told her I had NO idea how to post a pdf to my blog.  She replied, step by step, telling me how to post a pdf and offering further assistance, should I need it.  The information scared me a little—my knowledge of the computer is based on a little bit of word processing and some easy graphics work, so I waited until my very busy husband had time to sit down with Muskaan’s email.  After he locked me out of blogger for a short time, by changing my password when he opened a new google account when I already had one….he figured out how to show me how to post a pdf to my account!  So….hopefully all the links on the right hand side of my blog will now actually take you to a real pdf!  (If they don’t, please let me know!)    THANK YOU SO MUCH MUSKAAN!!!!!!!!

Jennifer Williams' Patterns
A Little History--
pattern by Bina Madden
Back in October, I was playing with Celtic Knotted Picots (I had taken a class at Finger Lakes several years before from Bina Madden, who developed this technique) and with Catherine Wheel Joins--I had finally “learned” them, when I was doing Jane Eborall’s baby buggy TIAS ,and wanted to make sure I hadn’t forgotten them.  All this playing turned into a little edging which I scanned and sent to Karey.  I really had no intention of teaching, but thought maybe someone more experienced would teach it.  When I learned that I would be teaching it, I panicked!  I worked several motifs trying to perfect my techniques.  These motifs can be found on Bina Madden's Paradise Treasures website  http://www.paradisetreasures.com/index.html and on Jennifer Williams' website http://www.cariad-tatting.co.uk/.  

 I developed the pattern “Their Five Year Mission” and some photo tutorials for the Celtic Knotted Picot and my “allegory” about Catherine Wheel Joins trying to come up with an easy way to teach the two techniques. 

This is the final version of the edging. and the pdf is available CLICK HERE


I named it Wandering through the Woods edging, because of all the ins, outs, overs and arounds the pattern makes—I could imagine the Teddy Bears at their picnic wandering through the woods like Billy from Family Circus in this cartoon.
 (Jeff Keane kindly gave me permission to use this cartoon from 8/2/09 for my class.) 
 
 I panicked after some of my test tatters had problems with the Catherine Wheel Join.  So I prepared kits so I could give my students a choice if they wanted to learn the techniques with size 3 thread, on a small project before they started on a long edging that would “show” progress.  The thread alone, looked a little lonesome, so I “filled” the kits with some things that I thought might make the conference easier for them.  It turns out, I had a very easy class to teach for my first class—only three students.    I thoroughly enjoyed teaching!  I had been dreading not getting to take a class during this session, but had a blast instead!

Saturday Afternoon’s Class
I think I have mentioned in this blog, that I have a sleeping disorder.  It makes my life crazy!! I haven’t driven in years (grrr!)  Everyone at our church knows that the thud they hear is my Bible or a hymnal that has slid off my lap when I am asleep.  I have actually gone to sleep sitting in front of a large group of 4-6 graders while teaching my Vacation Bible School Lesson, and standing in front of my teenage CYIA students lecturing.   I get an average of 3-5 hours of sleep a night—when I sleep.  I often am up all night long.  I have not in the past “napped” intentionally during the day…but most days do so, either uncontrolled “blinking in and out” or unplanned actual sleeping for 10-15 minutes.  On our trip, I got a lot of sleep!  I have been a car sleeper since I was a child—and will sleep almost every time I get in the car, short or long trip.  (Many people have joked that my husband needs to put me in the car and drive around for a few hours every night!)  I do see a sleep specialist, who I have “mystified”.  I slept well most of the nights on the trip, including well over six hours the night before!  I was so excited to get to go to Randy Houtz’s Split/Self-Closing Mock Ring Bear Edging Class.  I had sent in my Teacher’s Registration the day after I got it in the mail, hoping to get the teachers and classes that I wanted.  I had my thread and shuttles wound and ready to go….Confession #2   I honestly do not remember ANYTHING from this class other than people waking me up and telling me that I was getting ready to fall out of my chair.  I think if I had a gun to my head, I could not have stayed awake! (I only got three double stitches done during the whole class!)   a)  It was rude to Randy!  -I apologize again!!  b)  If I had known, someone else could have had my seat in the class and have taken advantage of some great teaching.  C) I’m sure it made some of my other fellow students uncomfortable — I do know I worried some of them.

Confession #3—I have not done the Split/Self-Closing Mock Ring Bear edging at all.  Instead I purchased the Shuttle Brother’s book, "Tatting Gr-8 Baubles, Bugs and Blossoms" and worked the Hedgehog Bauble! (I added ears, and his feet still need blocked/stiffened.)  The Lacemakers Guild of Oklahoma’s “Lace Embrace” day will be October 1st this year in Bartlesville, Ok..  The theme is “Seasons of Lace:  Autumn”.  Someone mentioned a hedgehog they had seen on Pinterest made with autumn leaves.  Hedgehogs immediately became the “unofficial symbol” for this year’s Lace Embrace.  So this little hedgehog is my attempt at not procrastinating!  Please contact me if you would like more information about this free lace event with vendors and classes.

Finger Lakes 2016 Part 4
 Sunday’s Confessions and Classes  – Soon!

Monday, May 23, 2016

Finger Lakes 2016 - Part 2

 How can a conference be different each year, and yet so much the same that it is comforting?  Registration was just like in the past years....Audrey checked us in, and gave us our nametags and goodie bags.  The goodie bags were made again this year by Sheila Boniface.  How she comes up with a different bag design each year is a wonder!  This year's bag has pockets all around the outside. Along with the bag we were allowed to choose a pouch.  This lovely pouch is just right for holding a pair of shuttles, or scissors.



Inside the bag was a group of baggies sewed together at the bottom with a strip of fabric (what a fantastic way to separate and organize).  In these was our challenge item for next year's "Everythings Coming Up Roses" theme--mine was a unhemmed, hanky-size piece of fabric with roses on it--What can I do with this that is creative and unusual for next year?   There was a lovely teddybear bead on a tatted motif. There was an empty plastic Easter egg (I had never thought of using them for storing things--neat idea!) with ponytail bands and tiny flip flops.  I had a beautiful crocheted coaster.  One of my pop bottle lid containers and a vinyl bag.  Wow.....such goodies!

The lovely gifts didn't end there!  I was a teacher this year!!  Sheila outdid herself, making lovely fabric boxes!!  Mine has a lot of purple in it, and I think the little paisley shapes look a lot like shuttles!  Then we got a fantastic journal (I think my picture looks a little "fierce" for a "teddy" bear--but....has anyone seen a picture of Teddy Roosevelt's bear that inspired the whole "teddy bear" idea?  He looks pretty "fierce"--so maybe mine is more "teddy bearish" than if he was cuddly!...Oh, I am rambling...)  We also got a lovely pair (look for the yellow handles in the picture) of scissors!  Just right for cutting out illustrations to add to your journaling!

One of the things that I just adore about the conference is the raffle and auction!  I like to buy my budgeted tickets, and go around and look at the sacks--then add my tickets to a sack that just has a few tickets inside.  That increases my ratio/chances of winning something!  This year I won this neat basket.  Inside were some needlepoint and cross-stitch kits, and a pattern for an outfit (unfortunately not my size!)  I was also gifted another basket by someone who won one, but only wanted the contents.  To bring back a phrase from jr. high-- "Neat-o frito, bandito!"

Once again this year, Karey Solomon prepared meals just for me--making sure that there was nothing in the food that might cause a fibromyalgia flare or migraine attack.  With everything she has "on her plate" at the conference--I just feel that this is definitely above and beyond.  I can't thank her enough! 

Oh, I love looking at the vendor's items!  Kathy Kirchner was there again this year (she always has such a wonderful assortment of everything from shuttles to thread to books!).  Marilee Rockley had some of her vibrant hand-dyed thread thread and books.  Monica Braxton had her shuttles and lovely hand-dyed thread (her threads, I think are more " softer pastels").  Sharon Fawns had a yarn swift and ball winder, and for a very nominal and reasonable fee, would wind your newly-bought hand-dyed thread for you so that it was immediately usable. Karey Solomon's tables are always fun to explore! (She also carries a wide variety of items--used in a wide variety of crafts!)

Thank you to everyone who makes this conference--different, and the same!!
 
Next post--Classes and Confessions!

Saturday, May 14, 2016

Mother's Day Bracelet


My oldest son married my wonderful daughter-in-love nine years ago!  Crystal is amazing in so many ways!  She has single parented during two deployments.  She is one of those people who always seem to know the "right thing to say."  She loves unconditionally and without judgement.  She is goal oriented--demonstrated by her cooking (When we met her when she was in high school "she couldn't boil water.") and in the decoration of their home.  One of the things that just astounds me is that she is a super-fantastic mother.  I am so grateful that she has chosen to stay home (for the present at least) and takes wonderful care of my three grandsons. 


I ordered these charms several months ago--I was shocked when I saw how small they were (I should have been paying more attention to the written description.)  They each have a tiny diamond in them.  The diamonds are colored and I bought the colors that match the grandboy's birthstones. I found the large hearts at Walmart on clearance after Valentine's Day.  The thread is Karey Solomon's handpainted thread, named "Sunrise, Sunset" and is a size 20 Cordonnet.  I adapted a pattern by Jon Yusoff called "Dimpled Chain Edging" for the bracelet.  It is found on her blog here http://tatsaway.blogspot.com/2008/08/dimpled-chain-edging.html She developed the pattern as an all chains project, however, I enjoy doing dimpled rings, so I worked the pattern with rings.  I also eliminated all the picots that were not joining picots. I left off the "dimple" on most of the connecting chains so that I could add the small heart beads.  The dimple did come in useful in holding the three hearts.


clover vs. Debbie A
Top and side view of Debbie A
On a different note, I have not had a lot of luck with clover shuttles.  I prefer a hook, and the clovers seem to jump out of my hands.  I had heard of a Debbie A Comfi shuttle that had raised edges and thought that they might be my solution to the "kamikaze" clover shuttles that always seem to fall where my two cats can grab them and play with my thread.  I could never find any of the shuttles where I regularly shop online.  Last weekend on one of my many "I can't sleep at all" nights,  I went online shopping and found Snowgoose Lace!  They carry a limiited amount of tatting items when you compare them to a large online store like Handy Hands, but staring out at me from one of the pages were the shuttles! https://www.snowgooselace.com/product/debbie-a-comfi/  
 I had some trouble with online ordering and the next morning emailed the company;  Shelly responded so quickly and nicely and before I knew it, two Debbie A Comfi shuttles were on their way to my mailbox!  I can't wait to try them out!

On Wednesday, I received my last order from Tatting Corner.  :(    It arrived damaged and damp.  However the products inside were safe and dry due to their packaging.  Everything was contained in plastic bags.  I will miss Jennifer's smiling face at Palmettos and Finger Lakes.  I so appreciate the help she has given me when I have contacted her.  I certainly understand the need to spend time with growing children and aging parents.  I will miss Jennifer and I wish her the best in her "new" life.