Tuesday, September 28, 2010

The Rewards of Blogging

If it wasn't for blogging, I think that I would have missed out on meeting some of the most wonderful people on earth!  I'm truly amazed at the people I meet - mainly just through the internet, and not in person. But then an opportunity arises to meet some of these people in person.  I had such good fortune in May when I met Robin who I consider a special friend, and now once again, I've been truly blessed with meeting more friends that I've become acquainted with through blogging.  Where the world seems so huge, blogging has pulled that world together and introduced me to some fantastic people.

Last week I spent five wonderful days in Utah, meeting people who I knew, but didn't know.  Had left comments for on their blog, and they on mine, had an occasional email with, etc., but had never met them in person.  They each shared the same love I did - stitching and things crafty.  You wonder about those people sometimes - what they're really like, what their voice sounds like -  you smile when you read their comments, and eagerly await their blog updates.  You find that they have other interests that are like yours.  You wonder about them, wish that you could meet them, but in the course of everyday life you know that you live too far away and have schedules that conflict.  So you email and follow their blogs and never meet them, but yet, because of the shared interests, you feel like they're part of your heart and soul.  Well, I had the most wonderful opportunity to finally meet up with some of these very special people and find out what they're like. We all met up at the Canyons in Utah - a truly beautiful place (all pictures are clickable I think).

Some of the girls flew out for the Shepherd's Bush Retreat.  Others like myself, just went along for the heck of it.  To meet, eat, stitch and have a great time!

I met up with Julie, Loraine, Terri and Jolene and we had a wonderful time.  Loraine's friend Kathryn was also there and was our resident cook.  What outstanding meals we had - Salmon in Parchment, Blackberry Chicken, Pecan Chicken to name just a few.  I am definitely not exaggerating when I say that we ate better than we would have if we had eaten out.  And Kathryn was wonderful enough to give us the recipes.

We also met up with Cathi, Cari, Joan and their friend Karen:

Karen, Joan, Cari, Loraine and Cathi.  What a hoot these ladies are!  

And the whole group at lunch:

Jolene, Terri, Karen, Cari, Cathi, Joan, Loraine, Kathryn and Julie at Bandit's Restaurant!  What fun!  A lot of good laughs and good food.

And these ladies spoiled us!  From Loraine and Jolene we were presented with these wonderful gifts:

Such wonderful talent both these women have.  These bags were stuffed with patterns that Loraine had designed, a bag with scissors and floss winders and Jolene also made this wonderful pinkeep:

Jolene and Loraine are just about the sweetest, kindest and most generous people you would ever hope to meet!  I am so happy that I now can consider you friends and I'll cherish that friendship forever.

Cari, Cathi and Joan also are so talented and so much fun to be around!  They gave each of us these goodies:

Such wonderful goodies and special momentos of our time together.  I'll treasure these forever!!  I wish that we could have spent more time together!  I think that my stomach would be killing me from all the laughing!  And I'm amazed that with all the noise and bustle that night when we were all together, that Joan could still keep the pedal to the metal and keep sewing!  LOL

It was such a great time - just the best.  We did some sightseeing, and what would a trip be to Utah without going to Shepherd's Bush?

Moi outside Shepherd's Bush

We had a lot of fun there - shopping, spending money (big time) and meeting some more people.  I wish I had taken pictures, but I met Katrina and her friend Karin, and Val at Shepherd's Bush!  Such a great time.   We had lunch in Ogden while we were there.  The street are lined with painted horses:

We also toured Salt Lake City and visited Temple Square, Brigham Young's House - The Bee Hive House and the Lion House:

Beautiful gardens around the house and around Temple Square

The Lion House

And a couple samplers located in the house:

And I know that the next picture is rather odd, but I had to snap a picture of the Sinclair Gasoline sign.  We used to have them in Michigan and it was like a trip down memory lane seeing one of them.  I remember watching the Flintstones and always thinking of Dino the Dinosaur whenever I'd see one of them.

Jolene and I went out one morning and tried to rustle up some trouble in a quilt store (and we did do a little bit of damage), and then we went to the cutest antique store where Jolene scored an excellent deal on a pincushion.  I wish I had a picture of it, but let's say, it was a steal at $6.00.  Way to go Jolene!!!  And I thought the building was adorable!!

I can't say enough about what a wonderful time I had and how wonderful it was to finally meet and finally get to know Loraine, Jolene and Kathryn, Cari, Cathi and Joan, and their friends Kathryn and Karen.  And to meet Katrina, Karin and Val.  I hope that our paths cross again and I will cherish the memories of this week forever!  You are all such wonderful, sweet and generous souls, and I count myself blessed to have met each and every one of you!!

Now, should we all do it again next year?  I'm in!!!!!!

Oh, and after a two month hiatus on stitching, I finally was able to park my rear in a chair and get a slight case of stitch butt!  It felt so good!!!  I have to thank you girls for finally getting me out of the stitching rut!

I know that I've been absent from commenting lately and I apologize, but things were really crazy up until I went on the trip, but I plan on rectifying that situation ASAP.  I have missed seeing what everyone is working on and can't wait to catch up!!!

Sunday, September 5, 2010

It's My Two Year Blogoversary!!!! And an Oldie Framed!

Wow!!! I can't believe that two years have gone by since I first started my blog.  Time certainly does fly when you're having fun!  I have had such a great time blogging, reading other people's blogs (although I've been hopelessly lax with that lately) and making so many friends and having so many wonderful email conversations with people that I've met.  Well, a blogoversary should have a giveaway, right?  Right!  But I'm going to hold off on that for a month because......well, I just don't have time for one.  See, one of the reasons is that life's spinning out of control lately with what I call crazy August, and getting the kids ready for school, etc.  And then I've been so fortunate to make so many wonderful friendships through blogging that I'm actually going to be meeting up with a good many of them in Utah in a few weeks at the Shepherd's Bush retreat (no, I'm not going to the actual retreat, just going out to chill), so I have lots to get ready!  Be still my heart!  JoleneLoraine, Cathy, Cari, along with Terri and Julie, and and who knows who else.  If you're going to be there, let me know!!!  I would love to meet you.  This will be my first real get away with the girls to stitch, gab and shop since before I got married!!!!  Can you tell I'm excited?  Besides myself!!!  So, I'll have a giveaway in about one month!!  Maybe I'll pick up some goodies for the giveaway, so stay tuned!!!

Because August blew by at such a rapid pace, I don't have much to show.  Crafting and stitching has been nil!!!  Absolutely nil. Do you know how much I'm missing it?  It's making my skin itch just thinking about it.  But the kids go to school on Tuesday, so maybe, just maybe, I'll be able to get some stitching and sewing done!!  But you know, I have to show some pictures, so I'll show you a piece I recently got framed, but I'm bowing my head in shame because it's been hanging in the closet for twelve years.  Such a slacker I am!!  But with the great framing sales at Joanne's, it time to get them out of the closet!!

Meet Me At the Field
Sheepish Designs
Mystery fabric (how can I remember after 12 years?) and DMC threads

But I haven't been completely idle on the crafty front.  If you can't do anything, my motto is to accumulate more!  Good motto, huh?  LOL  So that's what I did.  While my sister was here and we were in the quilt store picking out a quilt for me to make for her, I saw one made out of these fabrics:

Can you say LOVE?????  These fabrics are just not my normal faire, but there was something about them, and the quilt that was made from them, that I just HAD to have those fabrics.  The fabric that the folded pieces are sitting on is the backing.  LOVE, LOVE, LOVE!!!   It's going to be a relatively easy quilt - kind of like a Yellow Brick Road quilt if you're familiar with that.  I can't wait to get the rotary cutter out!!!  Did I say LOVE???????????

Then I just had to pick up these because Green Fairy Quilts was having a sale - buy one layer cake, get the charm pack free - can't shake a stick at that, so............they had to be mine, and don't they have a nice fall feel to them???  Speaking of fall - it arrived here!  Wow, from 90's to 60's in what seemed like second's flat!  But it feels so good!!  Tomorrow will be in the 80's again though. But anyway, I thought that these would be great for making some of those Schibble quilts that I'm seeing all over.  They've started growing on me big time!!

Now, before you think that I've abandoned stitching forever, that's not the case.  I also picked up these just because I've seen them on blogs and had to have them.  I didn't like them so much until I actually saw them finished:

And then I heard that some Jean Hilton's needlepoint pieces were being re-released (again, another dear blogger alerted me to that fact).  So, I had to order this too - it was originally a teaching piece, but now that Jean has passed away, it's on the market again:

I've had an itching for needlepoint so this will fit the bill nicely, although I have another one of her pieces in progress, so I should probably finish that up, don't you think?  Naw, maybe not!!  I did another one of her pieces years ago - Gleneagle:

Her pieces are so wonderful to work on - intricate, but fun.  This one I did back in 1995.  I still wonder how I got it done - I was working then and my son was two!!

So that's about it for me for now.   Thank you so much for all the wonderful comments you left me on my last post, especially about Bailey.  He's doing great, although it's definitely like having another baby in the house.  He's been part of the reason I haven't had much crafty love lately.  I haven't wanted introduced him to the craft room until he's potty trained, and since my room is in the basement and a long way from the back door to carry a heavy, dribbling puppy, he hasn't been allowed down there, but I think that we're on the home stretch.  No messes if quite a few days now.  He's a terror on four paws, but such a love:

How can you not love this precious thing (sleeping with his gift from his Aunt Cindy)?

Anyway, thank you again for all your wonderful comments and friendships.  I truly cherish them.  I know that I've been hopelessly remiss in reading blogs, but bear with me - I'm trying!!!   And I hope that you're enjoying this long holiday weekend with your family and getting some stitchy time in!!