Saturday, January 23, 2010

Dashing Through the Fog

Last Sunday I awoke to a strange sight. Did it snow? Was it ice? Whatever it was, it certainly was beautiful. My DH and I were able to drive through the woods on our way to church that morning. I snapped a couple pics.

I heard reports that it was frozen fog. I guess this occurs when the humidity approaches 100%. The fog just magically appears and sticks to everything that is standing still. I thought by noon it would have all melted off, but it was still hanging around well into the afternoon. It made the landscape look so fresh and undisturbed; it was disappointing to no longer see it there.

One sight I'm grateful to see everyday is my friendly USPS. There are some hard-working men and women at this location. If you should order something from the shop (or even better, win a prize!), this is from where it is usually shipped. The Post Office is a mere two blocks from the shop so it is quick and convenient to handle all the web and phone orders that come in. Best of all, I rarely have to wait in line, except maybe during the Christmas season. It's a creaky, old building, with original floors, counters and doors. Stepping inside the front door is like being transported through time. It's nice to still have this little bit of history, only minutes away. It's fun to visualize all the thousands of people that have walked through the door over the last 75 or so years.

And now, here's some more traveling, not through time, but across the globe.

I'll take you up, up, where it's cold and snowy and Christmas all year long. Where little guys with pointy ears and pointy shoes are busy making toys for good girls and boys. Where Santa keeps track of his growing list and is busy reading those letters and fulfilling wishes. Next to the workshop is the spa, where those 4-hooved reindeer are busy exercising, toning and eating right to be strong enough to pull the sleigh all over the world. Here they are with a little added *bling*. These guys, or gals, if you will, are designed by Hinzeit and can be stitched and framed individually. We love the impact of all eight reindeer displayed in one wide frame. Of course, my friend Debbie stitched this group for the shop in record time! You gotta love friends like that! Look closely at each of their outfits. So appropriate to their names. Careful attention should be given to Comet. Do you see the little rocket on her back? That rocket is what is attached to Debbie's needles! LOL She is the fastest stitcher I know.
The Crystal Reindeer model was stitched for Inspired Needle's Reindeer Club. When you join the club, we'll distribute a pattern per month. Each pattern contains the chart for one of the reindeer and six Swarovski crystals. You get to choose your choice of 18 count Ivory Aida or as pictured in our model, 36 count Lakeside Magnolia overdyed linen. Another great choice is 36 count Cream Edinburgh linen. You can't go wrong any way you choose. When you're all done stitching and ready to display your reindeer, we're offering Club members 25% off the Kay's Frame.

More to come later but I see a free evening ahead of me and I'm going to sit down and stitch!

Thanks for stopping by!

Friday, January 8, 2010

Back to Reality

(A scene from the corner near my shop)
Here it is, the first week of January already almost over, and it doesn't even seem like Christmas was here. Why is it that time flies by so quickly? So many things I wanted to do, yet didn't find the time to fit them in. Christmas cards didn't get sent, favorite cookies didn't get baked and there were some additional decorations I wanted to display. I think this year I will *try* to get more organized. A business blog I follow is encouraging us to take a few hours every week to plan ahead to keep our businesses moving forward. Similar advice that FlyLady gives to those that follow her plan. She recommends setting aside a small amount of time to go over menus, create a shopping list, pay bills, etc. to help us get through the following week. Truthfully, I do not follow this faithfully every week, but of those weeks when I DO plan ahead, my week goes much more smoothly. There is dinner on the table every night which because I cook double, means I have lunches for the next day. When I'm "too busy" to make the time to plan, my meals suffer and the DH and I are eating out or we're eating bacon and eggs for dinner!

So, my goal for the new year is to become better at planning ahead. I discovered a great little purse planner that I hope to make. All this blogging is really bringing out the creative person in me. The planner is something I hope to make and if successful, I will share with all of you.

Now, onto the rest of my story. There is a group of ladies I met through my shop that have quickly become friends. They are all talented in many ways; some you may already know them through their blogs. First I will tell you that a couple weeks before Christmas, Laura surprised me with this.
Laura is an antique shopper and she hit the jackpot with this treasure! Laura happened into my shop one day and proceeded to tell me about her blog which opened up a new family of bloggers to me. Many have become my friends! I haven't decided yet what I'm going to do with this lovely magazine. I hate to seal it up in a shadowbox frame because then you can't see the wealth of goodies found on the pages. I will check with my framer to see what he recommends. Any suggestions from any of you?

Then there's Patti . Patti and Laura met through blogging, from what I remember. Laura introduced Patti to my shop. I discovered that not only can Patti stitch, she also writes poetry! I admire people with a gift for words as many times my words just get jumbled around in my head and don't make it out onto paper quite right. Patti presented me with this as a Christmas gift. Patti beaded the earrings and bracelet herself. That girl is really talented! I love my beaded jewelry set and will definitely not reserve it for the holiday season!

Another new friend is someone many of you might know, Karin . Karin came to Chicago by way of New Jersey but is originally from the Netherlands. Funny, Laura commented on Karin's blog about her LNS and brought her here to the shop. It's amazing how all our lives are intertwined with stitching and blogging and crafting in general. Stitchers are just the greatest people. Karin gave me this lovely gift. The cute little clogs will hang on my Christmas tree and will be a remembrance each year. The cookies, unfortunately, didn't last very long, as I served them to my family after Christmas Eve dinner. Karin explained the proper way to eat the cookies is to place one on top of a hot cup of coffee so that the carmel inside melts into gooey lusciousness. My family gobbled them up and raved about them the whole time!

So, dear readers, thank you for following along. I have so many thoughts racing around in my head and want to share it all with you. Stay tuned for future releases of some of the fun things I did while the family and twins were in town!

Stay warm and keep stitching,