Old and New and Loved

I am so touched by some of your emails, inquiring as to my whereabouts lately. I haven't been here at the computer – mostly because I've been tending to the On Prudence model (to be released next week, hopefully!) and to little bits of spring cleaning here and there.

But the best thing that's happened this month is that my oldest daughter, Breanna, found a new place to move into! I'm so, so happy for her – especially because the apartment seems beautifully suited to her personality: the entire building is quite vintage, with the original wood flooring from 1917, as well as radiators (I love radiators) for heat, and a clawfoot bathtub (which we didn't realize required a special sized shower curtain). What a cozy, sweet, darling little place it is! (And the best part for her mom and dad: a state trooper lives on the floor below.)

Mike, Sophie, and I made the long jaunt out to western Nebraska with a rented truck and Uhaul trailer-full of Breanna's furniture, which had been in storage. (We had been saving all of Mike's parents' old furniture for the day that Bre got a place of her own.) The ride felt like it was about 3 days long…

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Finally, sunshine! Here we are, but we look so much smaller in our shadow. 🙂

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Immediately upon arriving at Bre's new apartment, we got to work unloading all of the furniture. Bre and Mike did the heavy lifting, while Sophie and I scurried in and around them with all the little boxes of pillows, plates, utensils, accessories, and coffee. Always coffee.

I love that Bre had her favorite items in the living room: her sewing machine, fabric tote, her grandmother's sewing box, Tilly's scratching post, and her beloved hoola hoops.

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About an hour later…

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Sabrina (she couldn't come with us, as she had classes) gifted Bre with a framed family picture…

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After we got everything put in the rooms they belonged, we decided to go to dinner and call it a night.

The next day, we all got right to work moving and arranging furniture, cleaning floors, and finding out the hard way that almost all of her walls in her apartment are brick! (When a large nail meant to bear the weight of a heavy piece of art bends right in half under the hammer, you know you're not exactly dealing with drywall.)

For her "coffee table," we brought along Mike's dad's old foot locker from Vietnam, which Bre absolutely loved. Not only for the storage space inside, but because her grandfather's name is stenciled on the top.

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I spent the day in the kitchen, doing lots of cooking, and enjoying every minute of it. I wasn't sure how I was going to be able to cook efficiently with no counter space except for the drain board, but I actually found it to be quite easy, as long as I kept everything picked up and put away. I'll never forget that day, with everyone taking turns dodging in and out of the kitchen to scoop up some of the hot corn dip I'd made (from a Tricia Yearwood cookbook)… or to have some of the delicious Zuppa Tuscano soup that Bre's co-worker brought to us (along with a delicious loaf of garlic bread and cake – what a lovely gesture! Thank you, Alona!), or to ask why we didn't buy a pitcher at WalMart for some sweet tea…

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I'll also always remember how Big Papa's Big Idea was to buy a stand to build around the toilet for extra shelving, which we all applauded, and which made him very pleased with himself. 🙂

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… And how excited Sophie was that Bre entrusted her with all of the decorating and organizing in both the kitchen and bathroom…

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As the sun went down, the living room became more and more cozy…

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Sophie decided it was time to find someone to spy on, and whatever she found warranted her calling to Bre to come take a look…

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 It turned out to be a neighbor who had locked his keys in his car and was using a flashlight to search for them. 🙂

Oh how I've missed this sweet baby cat… she was so happy in the new place, exploring everything and purring nonstop. Kaia will live at Josh's house because she is so close to Josh's dog, Nahla, and Bre and Josh didn't want to hurt Kaia's feelings by seperating the two. However, I imagine this arrangement works out just fine for Miss Tilly, as she can have Bre and company all to herself…

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I've always loved this silly girl's feet!

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When I took this picture, Tilly was watching Bre arrange her Grandma Frieda's figurines into her old shadowbox…

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(And across from the shadowbox, just outside the kitchen, is a blank wall I've instructed Bre to leave blank, because it needs a sampler there. Ha!)

I suppose I've kept you long enough.. see there? I'm either never here or I'm here too much. Feast or famine, nothing in moderation with me. 🙂

I leave you with my favorite picture of Miss Tilly… it makes me laugh.

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And thank you again to those of you who checked in on me. 🙂

October Goodies

Before the busy weekend descends upon us all, I have to show you a few things that are just too cute to not share!

First, look at these darling new Needleminders from Kelmscott Designs… this one is a miniature version of the Owl Scissors, and although in the photo I've got it resting on a Jeanette Douglas Quaker Pincushion, you would normally attach it with its magnet to your current stitching project, so your needle doesn't go missing.

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Secondly, take a look at the tiny Steweb Needleminder! Isn't it cutest thing? You can see the Steweb Scissors laying in the background, to compare the sizes…

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What a fabulous way to store your needle! They lay so nice and flat on the fabric, and I just love them!

And lastly, I am so in love with Bre's newest release.. she loved Halloween as a kid, and it definitely shows in her two new Etsy releases.

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I'm so bummed that Bre lives so far away from me, because I used to be able to swipe her models and display them in my house. heehee…. I do still have all of the models to her older patterns though (which I'm hoping she'll eventually add to her Etsy shop). The two that are there now are available for instant download, so if you'd like to order them (this one is only $3.99!), here is the link to her shop: Hodgepodge Cottage1.

(Am I being terribly obvious that I'm very proud of her, so I'm trying to plug her new creations and probably embarrassing her to death?)

I'm off to hurry and clean the house before my Sabrina arrives home.. she's coming back for the evening so that we can have our annual Chills and Chili night at my parents' house. We normally watch an old black-and-white movie and eat chili and whatever else we conjure up, but tonight we're going to drag my mother into the 21st century and make her watch World War Z. 

Have a wonderful weekend, and I'll see you here on Sunday for the next installment of the Sunday Mystery Sampler!

New and News from Bre!

Bre has been so busy with her Hodgepodge Cottage designs lately, and I wanted to take a quick moment to share her newest releases with you all! She's got them coming out during the online Needlework Show on April 19th, and I couldn't be more proud of her. And to think, it all started with my grounding her as a teenager and making her learn to stitch while she worried away the hours…

Here is Cat and Mouse:

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A Lucky Home

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And finally, A Warm Heart Welcome…

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I just love these sweet little designs (although I may be partial to the designer). 🙂

You can find them on the Kelmscott Designs page during the online show. You can also get more information about Bre's designs on her Hodgepodge Cottage Facebook page.

In other news, my Bre has accepted a job. A real, grown-up job! She'll be moving away from home soon, as she has accepted a graphic artist position for a marketing consultant several hours away. I'm so very proud of her, and so happy… although that first night she's away, I know it will hit me hard. It's going to be quite different from her being only an hour away at college, but I know that even if it's going to be difficult for me, she's ready for it. I couldn't be happier for her.

I love how she worded it on one of her Facebook posts: "…I'll be moving into my own home, and it can really be the Hodgepodge COTTAGE!" Okay, now I'm jealous, bc I always wanted to name my home. I'll have to come up with something cool. (And no, Mom, I can't use Greatest Show on Earth bc it's already taken. And quit calling my house a circus.)

Btw, when she was getting ready for her interview, I took a few photos of her fixing her hair in the mirror before she stepped out the door. My girls are pretty used to me getting in their space and taking a ridiculous amount of photos, so they rarely look at me unless I tell them to. I can't help it though.. I just love all those in-between moments that actually never get posted on the blog bc my girls would be embarrassed. 🙂 But all those little in-betweens are the cream in the Oreo, imvho, and I love every one.

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Looky-here, Bre!

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And then it was time for her to leave…

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I love my girl. 

Cochon and a Kitty

Before I leave for Myrtle Beach, I wanted to share with you Bre's new release that will be available on the Kelmscott Designs page of the online Needlework Show, starting October 20th. I love her little French words series!

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Speaking of Breanna, she was home this weekend and brought her sweet baby Tilly. We all adore Tilly, including Bre's dad, a self-proclaimed dogs-only kinda guy. (Don't tell anyone this, but he walks around holding Tilly like a baby and coos at her.)

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Tilly loves her mama.:)

See you at the Pals convention, if you're going!

New from Hodgepodge Cottage…

For those of you who haven't seen Bre's new releases yet, I just had to show them to you!

Here is Tic Tac T'Ocean… I LOVE this little tic-tac-toe-inspired design, and I hope she has many more to come. 🙂 The frame is from The Family Tree Frame Co…

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Next up is Morning Brew… the fabric is Lakeside's Winter Sky… (For those of you who attended the Celebrations of Needlework, maybe you saw it in The Silver Needle's booth.)

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And finally, from my French-loving daughter, is Fleur de Love…

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Thanks for letting a proud mom share. 🙂