Christmas Countdown!

Sunday, May 1, 2016

Early Christmas Sewing Projects

We have a new Christmas club that meets at our local quilt shop on the 3rd Thursday of the month. Oddly enough, that puts the meeting very close to Rudy Day (celebrated on the 25th day of every month)! We had several ideas for small make-ahead gifts. Among them are these cute fabric baskets. You can use them for candy dishes, in the craft room for small items (thread, buttons?), or in the kitchen (with tea bags?) etc. etc. I'm sure you can come up with some ideas, too.

The item on the left is a mug wrap. It wraps around a coffee mug, and gives you lots of little pockets to corral your small items: pens, pencils, small scissors, etc.
I think my mom needs one near her chair with her crossword puzzle pencils and tv remote.

Small potholders and mats for hot pans/casserole dishes are always nice. Choose fabrics in your friend's kitchen colors.

This simple table runner (below) only takes about 30 minutes to make.

The green tablerunner, below, is my version of the simple tablerunner. The 18 inch square pillow on the bed is one of my favorite projects. It says "Dear Santa....I can explain!" It just slips over the pillow that is on display 11 months out of the year.

I've been having a lot of fun making walker bags for my 96-year old mother, who lives in Florida. The first bag was made of bingo fabrics. I will have to dig up a photo of it to show you! Bag #2 has pink flamingos on it. I added the little cell phone pocket to the pattern. You can download the walker bag pattern from Craftsy from a vendor called "BucketsGoneWild." It was free!

Mom is a retired nurse, and I couldn't resist this fabric with Lorlei's nurses on it.

Remember decorating your bike with streamers for the 4th of July parade? They used to decorate mom's golf cart in red-white-blue!

I also found a free very simple pattern to make tissue holders to coordinate with her wardrobe of walker bags. I still have to make her Christmas bag!

Have fun making some home-crafted items for Christmas gifts this year.

Mary in VA

Thursday, September 26, 2013

A real reindeer!

Seeing a real reindeer was on someone's bucket they planned a trip to Lapland, and ran into the real Santa, too!

Okay, crafty friends, time to get out the felt, sewing machine, scissors and pompons. How cute are these stockings?! I want some to hang on my fireplace mantel this year!
Less than 90 days to go, friends, time to get planning! Go check out and get on it....
Seasons greetings to you and yours,

Sunday, September 22, 2013

Check out Ginger at Rudolph Ramblings!

I've been away from my Christmas blog for awhile, but I just discovered that Ginger at Rudolph Ramblings has posted some very helpful Christmas planning pages that you can print out and add to your Christmas notebook. You can visit her at:

Of course, I couldn't resist the Vintage Rudolph party photos, above! That Rudy sure is a cutie! For those of you who don't know, we celebrate "Rudy Day" each month on the 25th. It helps us keep the spirit of Christmas alive, and helps us by taking time to do a little planning ahead.

Check it out, and let me know what you think! I love her "baking list" as that's one of my favorite things to do.

Till next time, may the Spirit of peace, love and joy be yours today and throughout the year!

Saturday, July 20, 2013

Magazine and Book Give-Away

Hello Christmas in July friends! I have decided that it is time to pass some of my Christmas magazines and books on to someone else to enjoy. I just have "too much stuff" and it is starting to overwhelm my space. The Farm Chicks books is fun if you like 1950s era Christmas memorabilia.

I have several December issues of Sandra Lee's magazine, Southern Lady, and Food Network, free to a good home. I have enough to break them up into 3 or 4 different packages, sort of spread the cheer around!

These are photos from the "Farm Chick" book. Santa actually brought me 2 of them. Please leave me a comment and let me know if you have a Christmas blog or which Christmas blog is your favorite. I will also need an email address to get in touch with you. I hope to make 3 or 4 or possibly 5 packages to mail out.

Peace and blessings to you and yours! Mary

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Decorating for Christmas-2012

I haven't posted some photos of my Christmas decorations from last year, so I thought I would share a few of them with you now--in the spirit of "Christmas in July." This picture is of our master bedroom, with my "Christmas in the Cabin" quilt. It is a log cabin quilt made from 2.5 inch strips. It's one of my all-time favorite quilts, and one that I actually hand quilted myself. This setting is called the barn raising pattern. The quilt on the wall at the head of the bed is a Fons and Porter pattern. I used all fabrics from my stash, and the brick red and tan fabrics I used for the alternate blocks dictated how big I could make this quilt. The star blocks are 8 inches square, so if you are a quilter it would be easy for you to figure out this pattern on your own. I call it "Scrappy Stars."

This is a little corner of our master bedroom. It houses a small desk with a chair, my Thimbleberries table topper in red/green/cream fabrics, a basket of my favorite Christmas magazines and a few other trinkets.  Establishing a small "Christmas Nook" is step 1 on the "Organized for Christmas website. See the "June Rudolph Club Meeting" post for more information.

This blue dry sink has been in the foyer, the dining room, the kitchen, and currently the living room. It holds my Jim Shore nativity set and a few decorative candles. My goal this year is to make a log cabin quilt (about 13 x 30 inches) for the base of the nativity set. The fabrics are in cream and gold, and I have 26 of the 30 total blocks made already. As a matter of fact, when I finish this post I'm going to make the last 4 blocks and hopefully get it sewn together this weekend. So stay tuned for more, and I will post photos when completed. I think I will add some trees to the setting this year...can't decide between white or green, but we'll see what we can find. Hopefully Hobby Lobby or AC Moore will have some goodies to choose from!

This is our fireplace mantel, decked out this year with a "White Christmas" theme. I grew up in northern Illinois and so Christmas doesn't seem like Christmas without some snow. Here in
Virginia we can pretty much expect to NOT have snow at Christmas! The two little Christmas quilts cover baskets with my favorite magazines. I am a magazine junkie, I admit it. The two little kissing bears are from Hallmark.

Here is our tree this past year with lots of white and some blue, something completely different from all the reds and greens I normally use. My favorite part of the holiday season is enjoying the glow from the tree in the evening with all my presents bought, wrapped and under the tree. It's such a comforting feeling! I think I like the addition of the bow on the top!

My coffee table decoration...a big fat ivory colored pearl-studded candle, in a glass cylinder on a blue plate with white poinsettia leaves. We have a cat, so I can't have real plants or Dusty will eat them.
Rudy and Clarissa say hello! (They're from Build-a-Bear--don't you just love them?!) Enjoy your Christmas in July photo tours! And till next time, love, peace and joy to you and yours!

Sunday, July 14, 2013

Christmas in July

Hello Christmas lovers,

I hope you all are enjoying a little Christmas in July. Did you catch the fun scrapbook day on HSN? I had to buy some Anna Griffin, she can do no wrong, and I love her designs and card kits. Hallmark Channel has featured a Christmas movie each evening this week, and this morning hubby and I watched HOME ALONE II...the one they filmed at the Plaza Hotel in NYC. If that doesn't get you in the Christmas mood, nothing will! Love the decorations, and the scene at the end at the Rockefeller Center Christmas tree. Makes me want to turn the air conditioning down a few degrees so I can enjoy a cup of my favorite Vienna Coffee. (It's only 91 degrees outside today in Virginia)

So in keeping with this Christmas in July, I've pulled out some of my Christmas books and magazines, and done a little daydreaming. I found some wonderful recipes in the Gooseberry Patch cookbook. Some can even go in the crockpot, which works very well you have a busy day shopping, cleaning....or sewing. There are several recipes I want to try, and if I really like them, I'll include them in my Christmas recipe book collection.

I know this doesn't look like very much right now, but I am making a total of 30 of these paper pieced log cabin blocks. They will measure 3 inches when finished. Some of the gold fabrics have sparkly threads in them. I am creating a small table runner to put my Jim Shore Nativity set on. It's something I wanted to do last year but didn't get around to it. Between yesterday and today I've managed to make 20 of the 30 that I need. I can design these blocks very easily in Electric Quilt software, and print them out on paper especially made for paper pieced patterns. (Carol Doak makes the nicest paper that tears very easily.) If you are into quilting, I can't tell you how much fun I've had with this quilt design software.

Stay tuned for more, and I'll keep you abreast of my progress with this little gold log cabin project.

Till next time, friends, peace and joy to you and yours!

Friday, November 30, 2012

Beautiful Christmas Gift Cards


I love the designs by Graphic 45, and would love to share this video link with you. I think you'll agree, it's a gorgeous design! Wouldn't it be fun to tuck a gift card for that "hard to buy person" on your list into a card like this? They could save the card to use as a Christmas decoration each year. Check out the video to make it at:  Graphic 45 card

I believe this line is called "Nutcracker Sweet."

You could tuck a photo of the grandkids with Santa in the pocket--behind that little decorated Christmas tree--and grandma and grandpa wouldn't need or want anything else!

Graphic 45 makes the project coordinate so beautifully.

The designs above and below are by a designer named Gloria. You can see  Gloria's beautiful designs here.

The box above is an 8 x 8 inch box she is going to use to present some homemade cookies or fudge to a friend. Notice the "foody" words on the red paper. Again, this is another gift that would go on living at my house. It would make a fun holder for a small scrapbook album of the kids Christmas' over the years.

Gloria even made a card just for the Rudolph lovers!

I think I'm headed off to my craft room to see what I can put together.
Till next time, Christmas blessings to you and yours,