Monday, December 22, 2008

Three Day Snow Blizzard still Howling

Hello Everyone, I thought I would share some photos of Our World the last few days. The blustery weather never seems to go away. But despite the frightful weather our lovely winter birds still come to visit the bird feeder. They are a Joy to see. Here is a photo I took from the sun room this AM of a Lovely Cardinal, so beautiful in its shades of winter red. Oh, How I love watching the Cardinal all year long. I truly wonder how they survive our dreadful cold and snowy Western Michigan Winters.
This photos show our neighbor's doors going out onto her deck. There is probably 4 feet of snow piled up. Can you believe, and this all came in the last 3 days.

My poor lovely Autumn Joy Sedums are buried in the snow. My Sweetie blew open a wee path to the front door on Sunday afternoon and now the path is already snowed in again.
This photo was taken at the height of the blizzard Sunday afternoon. You can hardly see where the driveway is or our neighbors house across the street. I reckon you can not even see the road in front of our fence. This is only December and we still have 3 more months of winter. Oh, how I dream of the warmth of the sunny south. vbg There is no going outside today so I will head to "My Sewing Room" and start working on a # 812 Arlyn Embroidery Envelope from Crab-Apple Hill and use some of my lovely wools to create it. I really love their patterns.
Happy Holidays to you all. Hugs Judy

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Stuttgart Germany: Weihnachtsmarkt

While I was living in Germany I had the opportunity to visit several Christmas Market and one of my favorite was in Stuttgart, Germany. A Christmas market, also known as Christkindlmarkt, Christkindlesmarkt, Christkindlmarket, and Weihnachtsmarkt, is a street market associated with the celebration of Christmas during advent, mainly the four weeks preceding Christmas Day. These markets originated in Germany and Austria but are now being held in many other countries.

To read more about the history of Christmas Market you can visit this site.
I came upon a very unique Christmas Market Booth that sold very creative Bees Wax Molds and I could not resist buying a few. This lady was very kind to allow me to take a photo of her and her booth. The photo below is a sample of two of the molds I bought. Making beeswax ornaments follows a tradition that is centuries old and began in Germany with the Lebkuchen bakers. You can make beeswax ornaments for any occasion, season or holiday and also display them as beautiful sun catchers and wall decorations. I use mine all year around as sun catchers in my home.

Throughout The Christmas Market in Stuttgart there are endless booths of century old crafts that are truly beautiful. Beside the awesome pieces of art to admire most of the booths had beautiful old world Christmas displays presented on their roofs. I took many photos of them.

Every Christmas Market I visited throughout Germany and France was unique so I never tired traveling to them. The Stuttgart Christmas Market was approximately 2 1/2 hours drive from where I lived. Of course traveling to the Christmas Markets were always a challenge because it seem most of the time we would get lost along the way but we always found our destination eventually.
The weather on the day we visited the Stuttgart Christmas Market was chilly with a misty rain coming down. You can see that most visitors were using their umbrella. My Friend Jamie ( Fellow Nurse) and I traveled to many places and we always received kindness by the German people not matter where we went. I loved living in Germany and will always have very fond warm memories in my heart of this special time in my life.
I hope you all enjoyed this wee visit to the Stuttgart Christmas Market. Hugs Judy

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Blogging Friends and Kreativ Blogger Award

In the past year I met a new blogging friend, Gayle from Nevada and she has the most wonderful blog called "Sparkle Jars" and she kindly nominated me for this very nice award. Thank You Gayle, greatly appreciated. I have a long list of wonderful blogs I visit often highlighted on my blog and I enjoy reading them all.

I have been inspired to try tatting this past year unfortunately I had little success because I could not get my fingers to work right. vbg So I thought I would like to share this award with some of the Lovely Tatting Blogs I discovered and enjoyed reading. They create very beautiful lace that you will be in awe of.

Here are the rules.
1. The winner may put the logo on her/his blog.
2. Put a link to the person you got the award from in your blog.
3. Nominate 5 blogs.
4. Put links to the blogs.
5. Leave a message for your nominees.

The tatting blogs I would like to share with you all are:

Carol from Penn. Laura, Linda from the UK, Lacy from SW Michigan, Tatting Chic from Sunny California. I hope you enjoy them all.

Hugs Judy

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Crazy Quilt CD Pincushion

Hello Everyone, I thought I would share with you all a Crazy Quilt CD Pincushion I made for a dear friend for Christmas. I found the tutorial for this CQ CD Pincushion on "Ivory Blush Roses" blog last August and immediately fell in love with it. Lisa called her CQ CD Pincushion, Sea Dreaming and it is very beautiful. Lisa has a wonderful creative blog. I totally used 100% hand dyed wool fabric to create my CQ CD Pincushion. This photos shows a Dove.
This view shows a Christmas Tree stitched with DMC Jewel Effects threads to give the tree some glitter.

The snowman I created from 100% wool and felted it right onto the the wool fabric.
I also used silk ribbon to create the poinsettia shown in this photo. I also used Chenille Ric Rac and used the Dorset Feather Stitchery Couching technique to keep in place. I also used this lovely Chenille Ric Rac around the bottom of the Pincushion to cover where the 2 CD meet.

And of course any project would not be completed unless you sign and date it. I enjoyed creating this CQ CD Pincushion so much I reckon I will create one for myself in the new year.
Take care all and have A Wonderful Holiday Season. Judy

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Montague Crazy Quilting Bee, Christmas Party

Since 1996 I have been online chatting with wonderful ladies from around the world. I am still a member of the Southern Cross Quilter from Australia and I was always envious of their lovely SCQ Retreats and Quilting Bee get together. I always wished that someday I would be able to find a group of ladies to stitch and chat with. To my great surprise I found them at a CQ class I took in September at our local quilt shop called Quilted Memories. The CQ class was one class a month for three months so during this time we were able to get to know each other.
These wonderful ladies invited me to their homes for the next several months. I offered to hold the December CQ Bee at my home. I decided to make it a wee bit more special because of the Christmas Holiday so I served some tea and brownies. There is a total of seven here today and one lady was unable to make it. We had such a lovely time chatting and stitching. For a special Christmas Surprise I decided to share some of my old wonderful Aussie Magazines that has been stored in the basement for sometimes. My New CQ Friends really enjoyed looking at them which made me very happy.

In the top photo Sue was sharing a quilt she had just gotten back from the machine quilting lady. The photo does not do it justice. Each block has twilling and embroidery white on white. The quilt is for her grand daughter. This quilt is truly lovely. So I am now blessed with some new friends who share my love of crazy quilting and they all live very near to me. A wish come true.
Hugs Judy

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Our Christmas Tree and My Stitching Space

Merry Christmas Everyone, I had some time today so I took some photos of our 2008 Christmas Tree. This photo is of "My Stitching Space" in the living room. Here I can sit and stitch for hours. When the tree is not up I look right out onto the front yard where I can admire my flower beds in the "Blooming Season" and usually heaps of snow in the Winter.

The Quilt behind my chair is the very first and last quilt I ever bought before I started quilting back in 1994. the quilt pattern is called the Texas Lone Star or Bethlehem Star. It was made by an Amish lady in Indiana. The hand quilting stitches are absolute perfect except for in the bottom left hand corner where one of the blossom pattern is not completed. I was told by this lady that all Amish woman do this because the only person who is perfect is "God"... Also the Amish lady stitched 1987 in the bottom of the quilt so I will always know when she made it. Also the very lovely quilt rack was made for me for a Christmas a couple of years ago by "My Sweetie".

You can see in the above photo that today is a very snowy day with Lake Effect Snow warning for this evening where we are told we will get up to 12 inches of snow. very sad face. Most of the Christmas Ornaments are from a village called Lauscha in Eastern Germany. The Krebs Glas Ornaments are the first known company that made the glass blown ornaments. The "Krebs" link above will take you on a lovely photos tour of Lauscha and the place where these lovely ornaments are made. There is also several ornaments that my Kindred Spirits friends have made and given to me over the years.

I am a huge fan of Anne of Green Gable and another "Kindred Spirit Friend" named "River" gave me this wonderful Glass Ornament for Christmas this year. It is truly beautiful.
A Very Dear Friend Thea made this "Christmas Quilt" for me in 2003 and it has hung in the living room every Christmas since. It is machine embroidery which I have never attempted because I love to sit and stitch. It is truly beautiful.

This ornament I also bought in Lauscha Germany to remind me of all "My Wonderful Dear Friends in Australia and My Sis Lyn who also lives in Melbourne Australia.

I stitched this Folk Art Christmas Ornament back in 2002.

I also made this Folk Art Penny Rug Christmas Tree a few years back. Next week I will take you all on a tour of the Christmas Market in Stuggart Germany. Have a great week everyone.
Hugs Judy

Monday, December 1, 2008

My Seiffen Germany Christmas Scene Display

Today is December 1st 2008 and I have finished most of my Christmas decorations. I love this time of year when I can bring out all my lovely Christmas Decoration I bought when I lived in Germany.

The frosted Christmas Tree in the above photo is called a "Doppel Schwibbogon" which I bought in the lovely village of Seiffen, Germany. Seiffen is the official Christmas village in Germany. Seiffen is located in Eastern Germany in the "Erzgebirge Mountains" near the border of the Czech Republic. To me Seiffen is a "Magical Winter Wonderland" that I will remember forever through all the lovely Christmas decorations I have to admire when I bring them out every Christmas. Also you will see a Santa, Snowman and Christmas Tree Smokers which give off lovely smells from the scented cones.

The Christmas village of Seiffen in the winter time. In the far background you will see the Octagon "Mountain Church of Seiffen" which I have a replica of in the first photo above.

A bit of history about Seiffen. The toy village of Seiffen owes its name to mining. It is from the winning and washing out of tin that its name "Seiffen" ( mining of tin) originates. In 1324 the name was mentioned in a document for the first time. When mining became more and more unprofitable and miners got into serious difficulties, the number of wood tuners increased from year to year. Seiffen has a link to a lovely video that shows many of the wonderful toys they create. I only wished I would of brought home with me some lovely Christmas music from Seiffen.
The "Mountain Church of Seiffen" in the Spring time.
Above is a photo of the "Kurrende" singers. Historically "Kurrende" was a poor schoolboys choir singing before houses for alms. They are also included in the top photo of "My Seiffen Christmas Scene Display"!! I hope you all enjoyed the wee trip to Seiffen Germany. I have several more lovely Christmas places to take you in Germany in the weeks to come. Hugs Judy
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