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December 24, 2013

Christmas With Sydney

Last Friday I picked Sydney up at school for our 4th annual Birthday-Christmas trip to Rockefeller Center to have lunch, and Bryant Park to see the Christmas Village, watch the skaters, and eat dessert.   The end of our walk is always Beads World - her favorite store in the Garment District.  While we were eating lunch in 30 Rock, she took photos of the Santa skating on the ice skating rink and later that day I sketched and painted from the photo.


I took Sydney to see the New York City Ballet Nutcracker 4 years in a row.  Twenty five years ago we took her mother and her brothers to see Phantom of the Opera right after it opened on Broadway and suggested that we see it this year instead of the ballet.  It is the longest running Broadway show in history and it is still full for every performance.  We both loved it!


This is my quilted Christmas tree, made in 1992, and hung in my studio at Christmas each year since then.  There are small wood ornaments and strings of colored lights that I added after quilting it.  As I make Christmas presents for my grandchildren each year in my studio, I thoroughly enjoy my little tree!  I hope that it continues to grow old with my grandchildren. 


On Sunday I spent one more day in my studio for this year and made Sydney a Teal Blue minky elephant  like I made for Charlie and posted a week ago.  Shhhh!  It is a surprise!  All she wanted this year as a gift from us was money toward custom made sneakers - and with a Birthday last week and now Christmas, I wanted a little surprise for her.


Last night, as I made a list of my last minute tasks before Christmas Eve dinner in our apartment, I was inspired to paint a Christmas tree ball in my sketchbook.  The idea came from a watercolor artist I follow (Suzanne Smith if I remember correctly) and I  wanted to try to create a reflection using a wet in wet technique.


Now signing off until after the Holiday.... 




December 16, 2013

Christmas for Charlie - 2013

Last year Charlie, our 8th grandchild, was only 3 months old at Christmas.  I made him a Christmas stocking, but not a gift bag.  Over the years I made stockings and giftbags for all of our children, their spouses, and children.  So this year I made Charlie his gift bag.


The Santa image was drawn from a photo I used in 1976 to create a santa ornament.  I have no idea which magazine it came from.

This is our 2013 Christmas tree with all of the gift bags filled and placed at the bottom of the tree.  They are not complete yet, but it is the easiest place to hide presents from the kids.


I made Charlie a blanket, a pillow, and a stuffed elephant out of that incredibly soft, plush fabric known as "minky."  His big brothers each have the same blanket and pillow, in different colors,  from last year.  The elephant was made from a pattern from "Carol's Zoo."


I love the elephant, and remember the fun I had drawing and painting more than 20 elephants last winter.  Here is my teal blue elephant which I painted in my sketchback for Charlie.


December 14, 2013

Our Christmas in New York City

 I love the Holiday season and especially adore being back in the Northeast where Christmas is cold and snow is forecast for today.  Wednesday evening my husband and I made a pilgrimage to Rockefeller Center to see "The Tree."  It never disappoints.


Santa's Workshop is busier than ever here at home.  And I'm even trying to draw and paint a few of the projects.  Here is my sketchbook page from last night, after finishing all 12 of this year's Christmas ornaments. 


And here are the Jolly Dozen - one for each of our 8 grandchildren and one for each of our children and their spouse.


This is a pattern that I bought many years ago from Twice As Nice Designs.  The small size, made with a 62mm bell, is perfect for ornaments.  Here you can see the Christmas bell which is the body.


And here his is sitting comfy.


I've also made many gifts for our grandchildren - so entries from Santa's Workshop will continue next week. 

November 1, 2013

Greetings From Quilt Festival

I am currently at the 39th Annual International Quilt Festival at the Houston Convention Center - one of my favorite trips each year.  When I went for the first time, it was held in the old Shamrock Hilton Hotel.  It now fills this entire space.


There are more than 1100 vendor booths - this is a photo I took of a small portion of the vendor floor from a window on the second floor. 


Non-quilters may be surprised at the direction that quilting has taken from the days of quilting frames and scraps of old clothing.  This is a prize-winning group quilt made by the 3 artists photographed in front of it.


I take several classes - there are more than 350 classes this year given by over 100 teachers.  But I also meet friends and make new friends.

Raena, a virtual friend from the online Everyday Matters art group met me there two years in a row for our very own sketchcrawl. 


And Roz, who I met standing in front of Susan Shie's Obama Quilt in 2008, drops by every year for a quick walk around the exhibits.  And has even visited me in New York City!


Last year we were trapped in New York City due to Hurricane Sandy.    I started attending Quilt Festival in 1983 when I was living in Texas and have only missed 2 in all those years - 1984 and 2012.  The category named "Threads" on the right side of my blog details my work as a textile lover!

I'll be back next week! 

May 13, 2013

Mother's Day

I hope that Mothers everywhere had a wonderful Mothers' Day. 

Being a mother makes me so happy, and being a grandmother is equally wonderful. We have 3 adult children who we adore, and now 8 grandchildren (ages 7 mos to 9). 


Our youngest child, Rachel, stayed at home to raise her 3 children after graduating from Columbia College and Columbia Business School.  When her youngest child started kindergarten, she started plans for a new business for online consignment and sale of designer furniture and home decor.  That business is now fully launched and we are all so proud of her.   

Please look at the website for Viyet and see what amazing things you can buy for your home or apartment - and you can now have it shipped throughout the United States.  Even if you are not ready to buy furniture, just look at the wonderful photography and enjoy the designs.

This weekend my husband and I cared for our youngest grandchild, and having him here over Mother's Day was a very special treat.  I got to give him his "just finished" hand quilted baby quilt, and yesterday we spent the afternoon walking him around Central Park.  The quilt colors were selected to match the colors in his room!



He seemed to like it! 


Taking care of a 7 month old Friday-Sunday while his Dad (in the gray shirt), Mom, and two big brothers went to Florida, meant that I had no time to finish my sketches.  I worked on a page of his favorite "chew toys," but never finished painting it.  But we had a wonderful time and my sketchbook will wait for another day!

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