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?

Monday, December 8, 2014

Dear Santa--2014 has been a Rough Year!

The Oklahoma Lacemakers Guild had its Christmas party last Saturday.  We had a lovely dinner, to which many of our spouses and some of our grandchildren even showed up--which is unusual--usually it is just those of us who are actually making lace who attend an event.  This year our Christmas Lace Contest theme was "The Characters of Christmas."  My entry was this tatted Santa.  The pattern is by Mark Myers and can be found here http://www.tat-man.net/tatterville/tatpatterns/santa.pdf    I used Lizbeth, size 20 threads--for the face I used #630 Light Peach, for the beard and mustache, I used #610 Cream, and for the hat I used  #671 Christmas Red.  He has a mistake in Row #2 the moustache...that meant I had to adapt each succeeding row to match the row above it.  When I saw the mistake in row 2, I kept telling myself, "Don't be such a perfectionist!  Let it go, just this once!"--Wouldn't you know...the" just this once"--would be the time, you have to adjust each succeeding row afterwards!  There were some absolutely lovely entries in the contest!!  Many different kinds of laces were represented and all kinds of "characters."  The winning entry was a lovely group of angels, each done in a different type of lace - hung as a "Choir of Angels Singing."  I'm not sure which was 2nd and which was 3rd, both were bobbinlace--there was a mouse (not a creature was stirring) and a very cute rendition of the little girl--CindyLou from the Grinch Stole Christmas.  There were several nativities, a few shepherds and sheep, lots of angels there were several mice (I had a couple of Wanda Salman's "Morgan Mouse" which are button mice out for judging), there were snowmen...it was really neat competition...but, my little Santa didn't stand a chance of placing though!

As many of you may know, I have suffered from chronic migraines for years--the last 10 years or so, 3-5 a week, each lasting  up to several days.  Last year the pain specialist doctor found a synthetic morphine pill that I took once a day that gave me relief from pain most days!!  It was wonderful!!  The only drawback was that it made me extremely sleepy and I couldn't drive.  Sounds like a solution?  As most of you know...insurance companies seem to rule our lives these days!!!   We learned that in January 2014, they were no longer going to cover my synthetic morphine drug!  There was NO WAY we could afford it.  The doctors were afraid that I had been on it long enough that I was dependent on it so they switched me to similar drug on the pain relief scale --Oxycontin-- but not on the side effects scale....   This one shut down my colon..... I am in no way blaming my doctors!!!!   In January after not having a bowel movement for several days at home, and being in severe pain...I ended up at my family doctor's office--that I'd been going to for over 15 years--to discover that he had retired in December at the last moment (Obamacare got him -- it was going to cost him to much to keep his practice!!)  He had turned all his patient's over to his new partner, who I'd never seen.  The new partner, admitted me to the hospital, where I went another 6 days before having a bowel movement....this new partner--also refused to contact my pain management specialist, and decided that since I'd been taking oxycontin, I could take morphine--and then did not monitor me--and came extremely close to giving me pneumonia.  He certainly had respiratory and the nurses hopping all night one night!

In February -- without the help of narcotics this time I showed up at my doctors again after several days of no bowel movements hurting....This time I went another nine days in the hospital.  They had to give me a shot--the strongest laxative on the market.... 30 minutes later WOW!  Then, I made a mistake, I had been on dilaudid every 4 hours since I'd been in the hospital for pain and when the laxative started working I quit taking it, because I wasn't in severe pain anymore.  Well, around 6 a.m. the next morning...something was WRONG....I didn't know what...but something was WRONG.   I was hot, then I was cold...I was anxious...my heart raced....I clung to my husband and begged him not to leave me...my GI dr. thought it was a reaction to the laxative shot.... it was so bad the nurses were giving me anti-anxiety drugs,,, it wasn't until 24 hours later that someone realized that I was going through drug withdrawal!    

OK -- so my colon quit on me....  but this time it didn't start right back...I ate applesauce and drank ensure for months!!  Then gradually added a food at a time.  Around, I guess--September, you could take me out to a restaurant and I could order off of a menu and find something to eat! 

With the February colon shut down came pain that did not go away.  I almost always have a place in my lower left abdomen that hurts...as a matter of fact, I yelled, under anesthetic during my colonoscopy, when my doctor, hit that spot in my colon--and there is nothing there, at least on the inside.  The theory is -- that once my colon heals that I need to have exploratory surgery, that I may have adhesions and scars from my hysterectomy outside of my colon that are hurting.  I have had an "FUO" Fever Unidentified Origin since October 2013.  

My GI Dr. sent me to a Infectious Disease Specialist to find out why I was running this fever and have had the abdominal pain.....He did discover the source of the fever and treated it with an antibiotic.  He also discovered though blood tests  that I was in the beginning stages of a connective tissue disease.  Around June the symptoms really started, I started stiffening if I was in one position too long.  I'm to the point now where if I sleep 6 hours, it takes several -- at least 5 hours to "loosen up" when I wake up -- it is almost not worth it to sleep that long -- if I can -- which brings us to the next paragraph.

When I left the hospital in February.  The doctor in charge -- took a look at my rather extensive list of medicines and said "You are taking way too many medicines -- let's cut this list down."  He proceeded to take an ink pen and slash though this vitamin and that vitamin, this muscle relaxer and that muscle relaxer... saying this duplicates this and that is just a duplicater this this..... you are already on a blood pressure pill you don't need another one... here.. and so on.... He cut my list of medications almost in half.... well that is fantastic!! I was taking too many medicines--I agree with him, but since then, I have slept an average of three hours a night--unless I am heavily medicated.   A) I have what is called a Barret's Esophagus...which means I have a precancerous condition from getting REALLY REALLY BAD REFLUX!  I was tired of having reflux before it was popular to have reflux! I absolutely cannot go to bed unless I have not eaten five hours before hand.  Now my husband and I have really awkwaard schedules, and very rarely do we eat before 7:30.  Which means... I cannot go to bed before 12:30--B)  Now I take a thyroid pill which is supposed to be taken daily at the same time every day.  I take mine at 6 a.m.  I take it at 6, because you are supposed to take it on an empty stomach and not eat anything an hour before or an hour afterwards.  This also allows me to space my iron and calcium pills away from the thyroid pill properly, because they interact.  C)  If I go to bed at 12:30 and am going to get up at 6:00, then I only have 5 1/2 hours, not long enough time to sleep to take the heavy sleeping pills I need.  So I'm doomed to get only three hours.  D)  Go to bed at 12:30, and wake up at 3:30!  or stay awake until 3:00 and wake up at 6:00.  I've done both. 

Sleeping only three hours a night makes me a real zombie, and makes me drop off at the weirdest times during the day--and without warning!  I fell asleep, to the delight of my five year old grandson--and the concern of my father, four times during dinner one time, dropping my fork each time, and ending up with my fingers in my mash potatoes one time!  To nod off for a few minutes during the semon is one thing... but I fell asleep during Sunday School (we meet in the Sanctuary) and they let me sleep.... I woke up when the first hymn of church began!  Totally ridiculous!  This is the point that I'm getting to....It plays havoc with my tatting!  I almost can't tat!  With my migraines making reading patterns difficult (I still have them--only now I can't take anything...tatting them is worse, when you go to sleep and make a mistake, or actually tat IN your sleep and make a mistake!    I spend more time taking OUT mistakes than I do actually tatting!!  This little Santa that I did, should have taken me a couple of hours ( maybe two)  It took sixteen.  I was actually finishing it on the way to the dinner, putting in the final two rings at the restaurant!

As I was writing this blog I got a call and heard the results from some blood work they did recently, (12 vials worth!) I may not have a connective tissue disease--my thyroid is way out of whack and that may be creating all kinds of problems including the stiffness and pain, as well as the sleepless nights!!   I'm being referred to a neurologist (hey I already had an appointment set for late in December! --God works in mysterious ways! and an endocrinologist -- hey I have an appointment already with mine in two weeks!

Now, I serve an mighty omniscient God, who knew all about my health problems before they happened--and he knows how they are all going to turn out!  He has provided for me this whole time financially, and more importantly with the emotional support of my family and friends who pray for me.  

So, all I'm telling Santa is that I've been good, and that he can leave lots of shuttles, patterns and thead under my tree this year, because I know next year is going to be better!    

Saturday, November 22, 2014

Second Christmas Wish List Exchange

I was lucky enough to get to enter the Christmas exchange twice. My second package came today! It was from Melissa Deputy. The first thing I saw when I opened the box was two purple Aerlit shuttles—my favorites!! Next I saw all different sorts of containers full of different sizes and colors of beautifulicious purple beads!!!! . There were two silver (sterling?) turtle beads --that are absolutely precious!! To top it all off, she sent a wonderfully made frogger! I can’t figure out, quite how it is made—I think somehow it is a four-thread braid, but I’m not sure—but it sure is unique!! Thank you SO MUCH Melissa, I love my Christmas Exchange Wish List Package!!

Monday, November 17, 2014

My first Christmas Wish List Exchange Package

I was so blessed today when my “anonymous” Secret Santa package came today!  It contained all my “wishes”  Two Aerlit shuttles, purple beads, dark chocolate, and two hand-made froggers -- PLUS it contained TURTLES (a pendant and a bead) —which I collect! 

THEN—“SECRET SANTA -- Sue Anna Scribner”, who just happened to also have been my very first ever, Christmas exchange partner back a few years ago…which is how I happened to figure out who my “SECRET SANTA” was this year …. Also included SO VERY GENEROUSLY AND BEYOND MY WILDEST DREAMS------ a---- POP-A-BOBBIN SHUTTLE------!!------WOW!!  THANK YOU SO MUCH!!

In this wonderful  package were also lovely tatting bag, purple buttons, bobbins for my aerlit shuttles as well as four special thread bobbins , and a needle book (decorated with tatting),  I got some more really neat beads and findings.   She included a lovely tatted snowflake in variegated purple thread, and I got a hank of Marilee Rocklee’s Hand-Dyed Thread in a luscious deep purple “flavor”.  THANK YOU SUE ANNA!!  I couldn’t have “Wished” for more!     My deep appreciation!!

Thank you again Patti for organizing this!

Sunday, November 16, 2014

My first time to decorate shuttles!

I participated this year in Patti Poole's Christmas Wish List Exchange.  (Thank you Patti for organizing this!)  

This is the third time I have participated in an exchange.... I never feel like I give better than I get, and that I short the person that I give to.  SO, I made a decision after the last one that I wouldn't participate anymore.....       BUT--I gave in --and thought I would try again!  I hope this year that I did okay.... if not  I QUIT!!  Anyway, this year, one of my people wanted a decorated shuttle....buying one is a little beyond my comfort range--I don't shop the internet that much, and don't know who to buy from (I have some of Georgia Seitz' shuttles but other than that -- I'm not looking for ideas at this point--thank you.)

 So, I decided to make mine--also WAY beyond my comfort range--and a new skill!!  So I mod-podged, and sandpapered... and then mod-podged again....Over and over....  Finally spraying with the acrylic spray--did you know that you can't touch it for 24 hours--if you do it has softened ALL the layers of mod-podge, and you can TOTALLY ruin EVERYTHING you've done if you touch it?  AND you basically have to start OVER--fixing the gauges and scratches in the perfect shuttle that you HAD that isn't perfect anymore!! 

Two ladies -- who will remain nameless, unless they wish to announce themselves -- will receive these shuttles and their felt-lined, decorated tins--(they got other goodies too).

Saturday, November 8, 2014

Earrings for a friend

     My husband had a conference in Oklahoma City last week.  He took me with him.  I was able to spend the day with my friend, Lurene.  We had a great day together!  She took me out to a wonderful breakfast!  Then we spent the day going in and out of the shops of one of the outlet malls.  We did stop at one point to rest our aching feet -- Lurene generously paid for me to get a manicure while she pampered herself in some other ways at a spa there in the mall.
I sent her these as a small "thank you".
     They are made off of Anne Brovold's, Ringtrim pattern--available here--  http://www.georgiaseitz.com/2009/annebringtrimmikrodrageeng.pdf  I used Lizbeth thread, size 20, color 138, Leafy Green.

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Heart Bookmarks

The first project for my little bunny shuttles was to work up some heart bookmarks.  These heart bookmarks are an old "standby" pattern for me.  I stockpile them, made out of DMC size 5, color # 321.  That used to be relatively easy--however, our Hobby Lobby has quit carrying DMC size 5.  Now I get it from a little needlework shop in Arkansas.  This is via correspondence with my Aunt, who goes down and buys the floss, and then mails it to me in Oklahoma.  Why do I stockpile them?  Well, the bookmarks -- along with a copy of Quiet Times for Couples by H. Norman Wright is my husband I's traditional wedding gift.  This is the book that he (my husband is a pastor) recommends when he does pre-marriage and marriage counseling.  My husband and I actually use it ourselves in our quiet time every few years.    It is wonderful! *Not this year, this year we are using the One Year Christian History A Daily Glimpse Into God's Powerful Work by E. Michael and Sharon Rusten.  WOW!  History lessons galore!  What a look at the "foundations" of our faith--and how far we have slipped!  Gripping stories of early Christian martyrdom --  I recommend this book just for the information held within its pages--even if you forget the "devotional" part of the book! 

Oh this is a TATTING BLOG!!  I first discovered these bookmarks as part of the beginners online tatting class   http://www.georgiaseitz.com/newtat/index.htm          However, the bookmarks are available online here  http://www.ringoftatters.org.uk/seasonal/valentine/rpheart.html     I was able to finish three of the little bookmarks quickly--only two are in the picture.  Several years ago, God blessed me with a "scratch and dent" sale at Nordic Needle, and I got the one and only, Lacis Battery Powered 4-Ply Cord Maker and Fringe Twister for something like 40% off because the box was smashed!  Everytime I use it, I have to figure the thing out again...one of these times, I'm going to take pictures and make myself a tutorial--because it makes the prettiest little cord!  Anyway....   three hearts, three cords, now down to the tassels!  I make-- to "toot my own horn" great tassels!"

Now, I may or may not, make a great tutorial... but a little while back I put together a little PDF tutorial on "How to Make a Tassel"  a) the PDF copies are free   b) I want criticism--stuff I need to fix and how to fix it!  c) Please do not give them away or sell the tutorials.  To get a copy of the tutorial  CLICK HERE

Saturday, July 12, 2014

Some Bunnies Blessed Me...

My health this last six-seven months has slid down hill.  This morning my doctor rather "unsoftly" gave me a few "kicks in the shins" with some things he said and left me feeling bruised and rather hopeless inside.  I came home to find a package that I had ordered waiting for me in the mailbox.  But now I have to back up....

I've only recently branched out into the world of handmade shuttles, starting with some GR-8's, then Monica Braxton shared with me her lovely shuttles, and a few days ago....I was browsing on Carollyn's tatting blog http://tennbrown.blogspot.com/ when I saw these cute little chocolate and vanilla handmade bunny shuttles... Oh I wanted a pair so bad!  I read where she had traded once for them.  I also saw where Carollyn had TATTED a pineapple that looked like a CROCHETED pineapple.  That was so cool!  Well, I contacted her and asked her for the pineapple pattern.  As a side note, I asked how it would be possible to get a pair of shuttles.  It turns out, the shuttles, are easier to get than the pattern.... (? :(  ?)  She told me the shuttles were $30 a piece.  Well, I replied to her that I hoped Santa would bring them to me and thanked her.  Then I sat at home the next few days resigned to the fact that I couldn't afford the shuttles, but kept going back to her site and staring at those cute little bunnies.

Guess what...I dug into my little savings account and ordered them.   And they came (Back to today!!!)  ....In  this box!  

Look at that calligraphy!  How beautiful!!   Wouldn't you like something like that to come to your house?
Carolynn must have studied marketing!  Inside was this cute little paper sack.  Filled with paper grass.  Hidden under the grass......

My new bunnies!  AREN'T THEY ADORABLE, I've read where someone else online has named their bunny shuttles, and I thought that might be cute.  So may I introduce...."Fluffy" and "Tattered"--I can't wait to get some thread on them and get them to "hoppin!"
.Thank you so much Carollyn for the extra love, trouble and care you put into packaging your little bunny shuttles.  It may not make you an extra nickle in this world, but it put a smile on my face today!  I thoroughly enjoyed unwrapping my little bunnies and welcoming them into my home.  Thank you from the bottom of my heart!  Your bunnies blessed me!
Would you like your own bunnies?  Contact Carollyn by email

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

A Local Supplier

        I've been blessed to shop at Hobby Lobby.  They carry a wonderful variety of craft supplies and have a friendly staff that is very helpful.  I will continue to purchase tatting supplies there--to support our tatting community.  They are customer oriented and provide a 40% off coupon that is good off of almost anything in the store almost year round.  They play comforting Christian music and are closed on holidays and Sundays--which I support--I hate making people work when I am at home worshiping or celebrating with my family (although I realize some people like the medical profession or emergency services must work these days.)  I am happy the court has allowed them the freedom to exercise their religious freedom.

Monday, May 12, 2014

Kacee's Hankerchief

Donna Kacee Dunn--portrait by Shelby Perry Photography
Donna Kacee Dunn graduates from Hilldale High School on Friday night.  Kacee is my niece.  She is graduating 4th or 5th (I'm not sure) from the top of her high school class!  She is receiving many scholarships and academic honors and deserves all of them.  Kacee is a very bright young lady, but more than that, she is a dedicated Christian, who puts Jesus first in her life.  I am so proud of her!

One of the things I'm giving Kacee for graduation is this handkerchief.  Kacee's handkerchief is made out of Lizbeth, size 20, color #671--Christmas Red.  I think every lady needs handkerchiefs.  They are a requirement at funerals and weddings.  They certainly come in handy at other times as well.  I like the small lady-like kind.  I have a friend who is adamant about buying the large men's handkerchiefs.  You all know that you tat your edging first then apply it to the handkerchief.  The cloth of that handkerchief may even wear out--the edging may be taken off, and applied to a new hanky!

the pattern I saw on the internet...
I broke a "rule" this time-- not only of my own, but of my husband's--"--and that is to follow copyrights.   My husband is a computer teacher and he "preaches" copyright laws all the time.         This is what happened-- I saw this pattern on the internet, and really fell in love with it !  There was NO indication where it came from at all !   SO HELP ME OUT!! If anyone recognizes the AUTHOR, or the BOOK the PATTERN is from, PLEASE leave me a comment so I can give them proper credit for this pattern!

Now for a short rant (not tatting relating).... I feel like with Pinterest and the internet--copyrights and author and designer's rights are going to get less and less attention.... and I HATE that!  I WANT them to get paid and get the credit they deserve for their talent!!

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Ring Pattern

Once again this could have been a Finger Lakes post.  This was in the kit I bought from Carolyn Groves--the one I was going to put off doing.  I was impressed with the ring that comes in the kit--it is nicely adjustable for different sizes!  My daughter-in-law challenged me not to procrastinate, but to go ahead and "do-it-now" even though, I have no idea what I am going to do with it.  So I started on it.   The kit came with some absolutely beautiful size 30--or I suspect size 40 hand-dyed thread in some lovely variegated dark shades of blues and other  dark colors of the color spectrum.  However, I quickly broke and shredded that poor, beautiful, thread beyond recognition.  I had to replace it with some plain, old, Lizbeth, size 40, color #649--Baby Blue.  I did stiffen the thread with my Api's Fabric Stiffener from Hobby Lobby used full strength when I was finished.