Wednesday, January 31, 2024


Typically, January is the month for organizing your home. Many magazines, blogs and instagram posts are currently touting how to purge and organize. Since my basement currently looks like a storage facility and is making it difficult to comfortably craft, I decided that I had to start making a dent somewhere. I am taking the approach that if we were to sell our house and move, what would I really want to pack. 

I started with my clothes closet. I share a walkin in closet with Hubby and we keep it very neat, but there were items in there that I no longer wore or used. I got rid of a few tops that I can't remember wearing in the last 5 or so years. I put aside for donation a few purses that I no longer use (although I have tried to in the past year) as they no longer fit my needs. I threw out a set of queen sized flannel sheets that we haven't used since we remodeled our home 20 years ago. Yes, 20 years. One of the pillowcases had been tossed long ago and the sheets had yellowed badly. I should probably throw out the other set I have, but I remember Hurricane Sandy when we lost power for over a week and needed those sheets and many blankets at night when it was 45 degrees outside. There really wasn't a whole lot more that I got rid of, but there is a little more room on the shelves now and they look neater.

I have been looking around my house at my collections and knick-knacks and realizing that I just don't love some of them anymore. When we were first married, I loved the color lavender and collected lavender Wedgewood pieces. The only lavender room in our house now is our first floor powder room and I would like to change that sometime. The Wedgewood stands out like a sore thumb no matter where I put it. 

The pitcher on the right was a gift from my son when he visited Croatia. I will keep that out somewhere. I am thinking of storing the Wedgewood away for a while just to be sure that I no longer want it.

I moved on to the guest bathroom on our second floor and found several expired items in the vanity and medicine cabinet. There were 3 cans of shaving cream that my son used to use when he lived at home over 10 years ago. I will restock with the essentials the next time I go grocery shopping, but this is now up to date.

My kitchen is in pretty good shape, but there are items that I have forgotten about and/or no longer use or care to use. I have set a few aside for donation. I was also unhappy with the way the open shelf on my corner cabinet was looking. I borrowed a few items from elsewhere in my kitchen and added a candle and I like the look of it now. The little sparrow was one of several ornamental birds that my mom collected.

I mentioned my basement/craft area. This is its current state. 

Yes, that is my sewing machine table at the bottom of the photo below.
These are the shelves holding my craft books and some craft supplies. I have been going through some of the really old magazines. Several of them only have one or two items that I think I might want to try so I am clipping them and putting the rest of the magazine in recycling. Many of the magazines are from the 1990s. I am making room. Any project book that I no longer want is being donated.

There is a wonderful sectional and an old TV with a gaming console that is sometimes still used. It is hiding behind my sewing table in the second photo. We have file cabinets, an old computer desk, my husband's childhood desk, and a keyboard as well as a whole lot of items that were in storage at my mom's house and a bunch of items we inherited from relatives. The number of photo albums that we have is sinful, but it is hard to let them go. I also have photo slides from my mom, but I think there are physical photos of all of them. My job today will be to see if I can match each slide to a photo and cull what I can.  

One thing that I removed from my basement were my cookie cutters. 

Don't ask me why I stored them there, I couldn't tell you. I took my mom's cookie jar that I have always loved with the plan to use it when I made cookies. It is a classic 1950/60s cookie jar. 

Unfortunately, the inside looks like this.

I really don't want to store cookies in it. The light bulb went off and I decided to store my cookie cutters in it. I sorted them all and put aside some for donation that I will never use. All my cookie cutters except for 4 gingerbread people cutters fit in the jar. I put those in a Christmas Cookie tin. Now my cookie cutters are conveniently stored in the kitchen and I can still enjoy the cookie jar.

I have already filled the empty small plastic bin with thread spools that came from my mom and MIL. It is filled to the brim with mostly polyester thread. Not sure I will ever use it so some of them may be donated also. 

As you can tell, my organizing will probably last most of the year, though I would like to have a garage sale in the Spring.....I think. It is a lot of work and I am not sure I really want to do it. Alternatively, everything that is in good condition will be donated to a local thrift store.

Thanks for stopping by!


Sunday, January 28, 2024


Embroidery, crochet, cross-stitch and quilting. Those are the crafts that I have been working on lately.

First, I finally added the missing stitches to this embroidery I inherited from an aunt years ago.


 I'm not sure why she did most of the stitching in green ...even the flowers..., but I found a floss that I had also inherited from her and finished the stitching.

 I have four of these muslin pieces. I don't know if they were supposed to be dish towels or what. Some of them are quite stained.

 I will save them for now and hopefully cut out the motifs and sew them into a wall hanging quilt some day. 

I am have ditched the secret crocheting. It was supposed to be a crocheted chick in a decorated Easter egg. Let's just say that I was highly disappointed with the chick when all the pieces were completed. The proportions were wrong and it was sort of ugly even after I sewed some of the pieces together and added the embroidery.

I didn't even bother to unravel it. It went straight into the garbage as did the pattern. 

I am trying very hard to finish these blocks. There is one block of these 10 that is giving me fits and I currently just can't face trying to make it right.

I need 196 and I now have 111 completed. I can't begin to tell you how frustrating these blocks can be sometimes. I really hope that, in the end, I can manage to get them to go together so that they lay flat. 

I am working on filling in the background of this cross-stitched box lid. 

This is one of those UFOs that have been hanging around too long. It was a birthday gift 4 years ago. Since it is a wooden lid it is thicker than working on cloth and uses a whole lot of floss. I had to dig around in my stash to find another skein of the white Coats & Clark floss that I inherited several years ago that I am using. Thankfully there was one more full skein. It should be enough to finish.

I moved Three Boats back to my 2nd floor stitching area. Do you remember it?

This is where I left off quite some time ago. Not very much has been completed.

I sat with it yesterday to figure out where I am on the chart. It was way too dark and cloudy outside for me to get enough light (even with the lights on) to start stitching it again. 

Recently, after having trouble with our landline telephone due to the copper wiring, we are using home phones that are internet based. (We each have cell phones, but we have had the landline number for over 30 years and it is bundled with our internet service). Getting rid of the copper component meant that the phone hanging in our kitchen no longer worked. We took it down, but were left with the phone plate.

Hubby suggested that a craft could cover it. Of course I had to try. I stopped at Dollar Tree and found this cute little wooden house.

Other than the $1 house, I decided to use only items that I already had in my craft stash. Yesterday, I added some scrap fabric to the interior. 

I found some plastic stencils and used one of them to add the word home to another scrap of fabric using an archival ink pen. I tea dyed a piece of lace. I decided to use rustic ribbons for bows. I found the cute little wooden bird (that I didn't know I had) in a small miscellaneous bin and painted it maroon. I have a bin of paints that I rarely use any more. The mossy straw at the bottom was in yet another rarely used bin. I am pretty happy with how it turned out.

That is what I have been up to lately craftwise.

Last week both of our children and their families visited. We had 5 days with 8 people in our home. It is very busy here with a 16 month old and 7 month old and bitter cold weather outside. We celebrated Christmas with our son and also his January birthday. I did not get any crafting done during that time, but I enjoyed their visit immensely.

I did finish reading See Me by Nicolas Sparks soon after everyone left last Sunday. It is a hefty book and took a while to read. It is somewhat of a departure from his usual type of novel and I really enjoyed it.  I have two more of my mother's novels that I want to read before donating them. 

I am also trying to read my very large backlog of magazines. I tend to read these with breakfast/lunch each day. Not sure why I got so behind (some are 4 years old), but I have been going through them very quickly now. 

I am joining Kathy for some Slow Sunday Stitching. Pop on over to her site to see what other bloggers are up to. 

Thanks for stopping by!

Sunday, January 14, 2024

First Stitch Along post of 2024

Those 6 weeks from the last Stitch Along post really went by quickly. This is where I was on October Morning mid December.

I have added a bunch of stitches since then and have moved further to the right hand side where there is a lot of confetti.

You can see all the stitches that I added on the right hand side.

I am getting much closer to having this finished soon. Maybe by the next Stitch Along post in three weeks it will be done. 

Thank you to Avis at Sewing Beside the Sea for hosting this Stitch Along every three weeks and sending us the needed posting reminders. 

Grab yourself a cup of coffee or tea and take some time to visit the other bloggers below who are part of this stitch-along. There is a wide variety of stitching projects. These talented stitchers are from all over the world, so please allow for the time differences and check back for each post.

Avis, ClaireGunChristinaKathyMargaret,


CathieLindaHelen, MaryMargaretCindy

Thanks for stopping by! 

Sunday, January 7, 2024

Plans for 2024

Happy New Year! 

It is time to make some crafting plans for the 2024. I have two WIPs that I am determined to finish this year.....October Morning and the Log Cabin Star quilt. Of course you know that there are lots more crafts already planned and some that will just happen along. 

I have added another log to the next 10 blocks of the Log Cabin Star quilt. This last log gave me fits again. I don't know what it is, but sometimes these logs with the diamonds go well the first time through and other times there is a lot of seam ripping. That is certainly what happened this week. Yet, the log is on all 10 and the fabric pieces are chosen for the next log.  

I have been adding stitches to October Morning, but I don't have a photo today.

I also started this crochet project. It's a secret so I can't tell you what it is, but I need to make two of them. Of course this is one of those surprise items that come along.

If you want to know just how long I have been saving this pattern, the date in the lower right corner is Woman's Day/ March 27, 1978. I think it is well past time that I make this item. When I was going through my saved patterns....of all different crafts....I started to throw out those that I realize I will just never make or that I no longer care for. I need to really start purging some patterns.

Before I reveal some more of my crafting plans, I want to share with you this organizational mess.

This was my dining room yesterday at 4 still looks like that this morning. These are several of my Christmas storage boxes. Yes, that is a Pampers box from over 30 years ago. I also inherited 3 large storage boxes of Christmas decorations from my mother as well as a small cardboard box and a large box of tree ornaments. I have yet to sort through the ornaments. That box currently resides in my basement. I was able to quickly empty one of the 3 boxes as there were 9 unadorned wreaths and a few other items that I just didn't want. I took that box and filled it with all of my own Christmas greenery items as well as a few of my mom's. That is now in the garage waiting to be stored on the shelf. One of her boxes is filled with vintage putz houses as well as a plastic church from my childhood and her stable with 2 nativity from mom's childhood. That is also in the garage waiting to be stored as it is well packed and I didn't feel like sorting it. 
I knew that I also had a few decorations of my own that I no longer want. Please note that there are 6 boxes of Christmas decor that you can see with another 5 in my basement as well as 2 boxes of lights (one for outdoors and one for the tree). Do you think I have waaaay to many Christmas decorations? I do, but I have trouble parting with them. What I decided to do is put all of my Santas together in one box and all of the snowmen together in another. They have been scattered throughout all the boxes and it makes decorating a challenge sometimes. Also, I thought that I may want to keep the snowmen out throughout January, but that was impossible as they were in several different boxes. I also wanted to keep some of my mom's decorations, but I needed to add them to my boxes. So I emptied almost all of the boxes and started a play Christmas decoration Tetris. I have made great progress, but I got tired yesterday. I plan on finishing the storing....fingers

Well enough about that, let me finally tell you my 2024 crafting plans. I have several WIPs that I would like to finish. I will share photos of these item as I work on them. There are some new items that I want to start also.

1. October Morning
2. Log Cabin Star quilt
3. Finish stitching the cross-stitch lid of a box
4. Finish an embroidered apron
5. Finish the Tweety pillow
6/7. Make 2 I-Spy quilts
8. Make 2 Felt Christmas ornaments for my grandchildren (a July project)
9. Finish (maybe) my maroon sweater (I am not sure it is possible) 
10. Finish the Overall Sam quilt that my mom pieced (quilting and binding needed)
11. Work on Three Boats (do you remember that cross-stitch?)
12. Work on Summer Oak Embroidery (I'm not sure I ever shared this old WIP)
13. Start one of 4 cross-stitch projects that I have waiting in the wings
14. Try my hand at making machine stitched rope baskets.
15. Start the 3D looking ball quilt that needs to be hand pieced or a tumbling blocks quilt. 

 I am truly hoping that I can successfully complete the first ten. Remember though that I have already started a crocheted project that is not on the list and I want to make small gift for a friend's daughter who is expecting in February. 

I am joining Kathy for some Slow Sunday Stitching. Pop on over to her site to see what other bloggers are up to. I hope to add a few stitches to October Morning today after I finish my organizing.

Thanks for stopping by!