Friday, September 28, 2007


I bought this handy, dandy, inspirational book with big plans for organizing my desk and scrapbooking room (my sewing and knitting stuff is downstairs). It's a wonderful book. I love to curl up and study the fantastic pictures. So, I went from boring and barren to...
...a totally cluttered workspace.
But, it's home and I'm happy here!!

And this is just one of 3 walls. Boyd has the 4th.

Have a great weekend!

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Pillowcases II

What fun these are to make!
I finished up the other pillowcase for our bed this morning and made a pair of Halloween cases for one of my girls. I'll make the other pair for my other daughter tomorrow.
I'm dying to go back to the quilt shop.
However, I have to read (as though that's a chore) because I have a 7 day book from the library and haven't finished it.
Dollhouse Update:
The order for my 'addition' was cancelled (out-of-stock) and that puts a 'hold' on the painting. Lots of cute furniture has arrived, though.

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

A Passion for Pillowcases

I have always loved/collected sheets and pillowcases. Now that we have a king-sized bed I've just been using white... found a high thread count with hem stitching that is soft as silk. So I bought several sets of these and called it quits. But I miss the beautiful prints, patterns, and colors.
When I was at the quilt shop, Jana showed me how to make a pillowcase. So easy and no raw edges as you use french seams.
I was hooked!!
I bought fabric (3 fabrics for each case) for a pair for our bed and Halloween fabric to make a pair for each of my girls. Yes, I know I have a lot of Halloween fabric already, however Jana had such soft, retro fabric... had to buy it. Here's a close-up of the pillowcase. I wanted you to see the red fabric as it is a rose print with a variety of shades of red in it. The blue trim does have a slight pattern in it, too.

The main floral is whiter than the photo shows, but I'm too rushed today to edit it.

Fabric requirements:
3/4 yard main print
1/8 yard for trim
1/3 yard for band/cuff

Be certain you feel the fabric so it's pillowcase friendly... soft, soft, soft.

I'm ordering fabric for Christmas pillowcases this morning. I have a Jelly Roll of Moda Christmas fabric so I can feel it and match prints. Finding the yardage will be the trick. But, there's nothing like a good web search.

I envision a stack of pillowcases which I will tuck into a white basket and display in the bedroom.

Make it a great day!!

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

My Favorite Quilt Shop

This is actually the name of the store... 'My Favorite Quilt Shop' and it also is my favorite!! Come on a virtual tour and see what I drooled over yesterday.There are WONDERFUL quilts draped all over the store. This is my favorite quilt. I want to wrap up in it. I love the colors and prints. I bought fat quarters of all the fabrics the last time I was in the shop... to make a purse.
This is another quilt that I saw for the first time yesterday. It reminds me of fall and I love the criss-cross strips of fabric and buttons.

I'm crazy about 'Jelly Rolls'.
I bought one for Christmas, but I can see a collection heading my way. They will definitely be on my birthday (November) wish list and my Christmas "Dear Santa..." list!! The shop carries a nice selection.

And there's an Amy Butler corner.
The wooden box on the top is empty because I bought all the fat quarters.

Kaffe Fassett... my very favorite designer!
I love this quilt with so many of his beautiful fabrics in it.
And look at this for cleverness.
The photo of Kaffe below is matted in his fabric.

This is the Kaffe fabric corner. I actually cut out some of the fabric by mistake.
It's the area in the shop that I always head first.

I bought fabric to make pillowcases for our bed and Halloween fabric to make a pair of cases
for each of the girls.
I'll try and post them tomorrow.
Jana the owner, took me step by step through the construction. Each case has 3 fabrics.
Next time you're in Wisconsin, make a point of stopping here:
My Favorite Quilt Shop
1550 Douseman St.
Green Bay WI 54303
Phone: (920) 965-2085
Owner: Jana Anderson-Laes
Off to sew!

Monday, September 24, 2007

New Family Photos

Wendy (Arizona) sent new photos and I wanted to share my favorites.

1. Our newest family addition... Wyley! He's almost 7 months old and full of energy. Wendy said he takes a running start in the house, through the patio doors, and into the pool. He looks like a drowned rat in this photo. Favorite pastime: floating on the raft and fetching toys in the water.
2. The girls with their dad, Carston, doing the town in Chicago. All three of them have such beautiful blue eyes that never seem to show up in photos. He's a great dad. Looks a lot like Bill Clinton in person.
3. Wendy (getting married in the Spring) and Kristin at Kristin's house before their 'dad date'. They both run marathons and Kristin has done 2 triathlons. Their bodies show it! Mine shows that I don't do it!

I'm off to... I haven't a clue!

Friday, September 21, 2007

Take a peek!!

I couldn't resist sharing a sampling of a room in the Doll Cottage. Actually, this photo wasn't taken in the dollhouse, but on a table where I was playing around with the furniture. It's arranged on wood flooring that will go into the house... but the red checked wallpaper won't be in that spot. Isn't the quilt on the back of the sofa adorable? The dog's name is Winston. I ordered a white wooden trunk to use as a coffee table and... well, I don't want to tell all. When I came home from the library today and saw my husband remaking the small staircase... I knew what the house needed! If he could rebuild the staircase... he could build an addition off the side of the house ( Whoops... I bought dining room furniture and there wasn't a dining room). He agreed to build it but wanted me to show him exactly what I wanted this 'wing' to look like. I did a few searches online and found this room (below) and attic space that was already to put together and attach to the side of the house. "Like this!" I shared enthusiastically. "Then why not buy it?" he replied. So, I did!

It looks so tiny but the floor dimensions are something like 8"x12". That's a good size for the kitchen. If not, it will be the bathroom. OR... maybe I should put an addition on the other side of the house to balance this and then I'd have a sewing room/scrapping room.

You know what cracked me up... my husband's concern about how the doll family was going to get into this additional room as there was no door. I tried to explain that it's just a dollhouse and they don't have a way to get into the bathroom either. Well... he's still mulling this over in his head, so we'll see what he does to ease his mind. Men are so funny! One minute he's reading a book (one of 3 thick books) on the Civil War and the next time I look up he's got a dollhouse catalog in his hands. "You've got a fireplace... you have to have a chimney!" he mumbled.

I appreciate his interest.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Buttons are HOT !!!

Buttons are everywhere!
They're all over scrapbooking layouts and other crafts.
Grandma's button box is no longer hidden away, but now filling a lovely glass vase in a place of prominence on a table.
A pretty jar filled with just white buttons is feminine... or looks great in the summer with nautical decor. And so on!
Let your imagination fly! Hmmmm... maybe a jar or dish of fall-colored buttons at this time of the year. Endless possibilities!!
And here's one more idea... A button-covered purse. I don't use mine as a handbag, but rather as a wall decoration.
The purse itself is inexpensive... the buttons are pre-sewn with thread... then glued onto the purse. I love the effect! Lots of color, pretty, a conversation piece, and fun to make.
Do you have any interesting ideas for buttons?

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

HELP! I need YOUR input!!!

I think I've mentioned before that we own a house in a city about an hour from where we live. We haven't put it up for sale because it was such a perfect, comfortable place for the girls to stay when they came home. The furniture has now gone to Wendy's house in Arizona so it's time to sell.
We're having it repainted right now, and misc. repairs/improvements.
I was in the basement last week looking at the treasures that are still on shelves and trying to figure out what to do with them. I pulled open a drawer and... WOW... it was full of Halloween fabric!
I brought it home and washed and dried it. This morning I got up and ironed and folded it.

Now it looks so festive and inviting... and it didn't cost a cent. Well, years ago it did!

But, what can I make with it??
Help! Help! Help!
A few of the pieces are a full yard, some half yards, and a few fat quarters.
I'm feeling so Autumn-like... but today it's supposed to be 85 degrees.
Make today a good one!
Hugs, Joni

Sunday, September 16, 2007

More wee things for the dollhouse...

I didn't get as much done on the dollhouse this weekend as I had planned. It was my mother-in-law's birthday Sunday, so we were out of town for the day.
But I did get a base coat of paint on the house... pale yellow... and found several more miniatures to decorate with.
Also spent some time with 2 books on Scandinavian decorating. So, I did decide that it's definitely going to be a Scandinavian cottage with some hand painted folk-art.
Have I mentioned I'm Norwegian?
I found this PIE CRUST TABLE... so flexible as far as 'use'.

I couldn't pass up this bookshelf because it can be filled with mini-quilts in the bedroom, towels in the bath, or books in the living room.

I fell in love with this sofa table. I've always loved having a narrow table behind a sofa for a plant, small lamp, etc. I like the detailing on this one.

And what is a home without craft magazines? Aren't these adorable?

I decided that the first bed I bought is not right for a Scandinavian cottage, so I bought another BED which will look much more in keeping with the theme. I want to take out my black Sharpie marker and put an X through the bedspread... not my taste!! But then I'd have permanent marker on my computer screen.
1. Second coat of yellow paint.
2. Paint the roof (no, it's not a sod roof w/goats).
3. Hopefully, attach decorative blue trim, black shutters, & window boxes.
4. Paint porch floor and attach railings & porch roof.
5. Get on the treadmill... must start routine!
(I hate the thought of it)
Make your day a good one!!

Friday, September 14, 2007

Traveling again!

Wendy and Darin are flying to Chicago to spend the weekend with Kristin and attend a wedding. They were in Arizona together a few weeks ago and now it's off to Chicago. Both of my girls have always put travel, family, and friends at the top of their priority lists. We instilled the love of travel in them when they were quite small... actually Kristin was born in Germany when I was there teaching. So she had her first passport when she was 2 months.

When they were in middle school/high school my mother took us to London for a Charles Dickens' Christmas. The following Christmas she took us to Hawaii. What a sweet mom ('Nonnie' to the girls)! In the summers the girls worked on a dude ranch in Wyoming and ended up living in Jackson Hole. They've both lived & worked in Colorado for all those skiing opportunities.

Kristin has traveled to China, Hong Kong, Thailand, France, London, Ireland, Mexico, Germany, Aruba, Curacao, and most of the US (including 4 Hawaiian islands).

Wendy has traveled to Nepal (trekked to Mt Everest), Thailand, Sweden, London, France, Italy, Costa Rica, Canada, Mexico, India, Taipei, Bermuda, 'the Saints'... St Thomas, etc, and most of the US (including 3 months in Alaska... and Hawaii).

They squeezed college in between these adventures. Wendy is an Event Planner and Kristin is a Senior Marketing Mgr for a large corp . They're still on the lookout for an adventure!

I've traveled a lot... but I still live precariously through their adventures. It's such fun!!
Off to paint the outside of the dollhouse. By Monday's blog it should be looking good. Will take pictures for you

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Shopping for the Dollhouse

I have been on my computer for hours... locating sites that sell DH furniture online and trying to find what I had seen earlier... and looking for other things on my list. So, this is what I ordered today:
A Laptop Computer: Dollhouse sized, of course. How can you have a house without a computer?? Even if only wee folk live in it??
Mailbox: 'Snail Mail' is important too (and packages).

White Sofa: I hunted and hunted for this sofa. I wanted white so I can load it with little, tiny, and colorful pillows (patched and petit point)

2 Red Checked Arm Chairs: Forget the other chair in the picture and envision it red checked like the other. They'll both go in the living room with the sofa.

Dining Table: This will go in the dining area that will be at one end of the living room.

Dining Chairs: I bought Shaker chairs to go around the table.

Shaker Hutch: This will go next to the table and chairs to hold the Delft dishes I haven't bought yet.

Bathroom: I loved the corner tub, so had to have this set. I also bought a cupboard with shelves for tiny towels.

Kitchen Set: I wanted a blue & white kitchen so I was excited when I found this set. This looked so inviting I wanted to make a pot of tea in it.

Quilt: This is my favorite find of the day. I found a lady who makes tiny quilts & was selling some on Ebay. I'll make shams and pillows, sheets, etc.
What are those silly bears doing on my quilt?

Bed: This is the bed I chose from hundreds on many sights. This is definitely a female's home. Remember, it's all pretend!
Just the beginning... lots of work to do on the house itself. And then fine-tune the decorating.
Off to finish a book as it's due at the library tomorrow.
Thanks for letting me share... that's part of the fun of creating.

Monday, September 10, 2007

The Dollhouse: Under Construction

When I decided I wanted a dollhouse of my own (the girls have now taken theirs), I looked at kits online. There are so many choices and prices vary as does quality and size. I chose a simple 4 room cottage that was medium priced and was the perfect size for a spot in the guest room. Boyd was willing to build it... YEA!! But I'm keeping an eye on the construction because there needs to be some 'tweaking' here and there to make it mine rather than like the picture on the box. In the top photo you can see the stairs he built and the window frames that are on the inside of the house.
The walls are up and the porch is on, but the roof is just resting on the top... I wanted to see what it would look like. Patience is something I'm always working on, while Boyd works on the house.

Poor Boyd... he's hammering away and I'm decorating already. Just had to get a feel for the place!
The chair is a leftover from Wendy's dollhouse.
I made the pumpkins out of Sculpey clay and used cloves for the stems. They are baked and hard-as-a-rock. The plant is made from a tiny flowerpot filled with unbaked brown clay and some small silk greens I found.
Isn't the door cute?? I bought a brass door knocker and door handle to glue on.
There's so much more to do... shutters and window boxes and an attached roof of course. And then the inside... another day!
I'm off to get a Grande Cinnamon Dolce Cream lite with sugar free syrup, nonfat milk, and NO whipped cream (sob!) and cinnamon sprinkles... at Starbucks.

Saturday, September 8, 2007

My Latest Love...

A Green Tea Frappuccino Light FYI from the Starbucks web site:

Tazo® Green Tea Frappuccino® Light Blended Crème
A unique combination of Premium Japanese green tea or Matcha, lightly sweetened with a hint of melon and milk, blended with ice, with fewer calories (the frappuccino in my photo has whipped cream in it. So, UP the fat content below).

Serving Size
12 fl. oz. --> (Tall)

Amt Per Serving
Fat Calories
Total Fat (g)
Saturated Fat (g)
Trans Fat (g)
Cholesterol (mg)
Sodium (mg)
Total Carbohydrates (g)
Fiber (g)
Sugars (g)
Protein (g)
Vitamin A
Vitamin C
Caffeine (mg)
The latest Starbucks info... they're opening in Russia!
Try one! I've had several this past week as a 'back-to-school' treat. 'Back-to-school' meaning that I don't have to go to school anymore... I'm retired!!!
Do you have a favorite drink from Starbucks?

Thursday, September 6, 2007

A Holly Jolly Day

Today was one of those fun days. Boyd was willing to go shopping! Matter-of -fact he had several stores he wanted to go to, also. So, enjoying the spontaneity that retirement offers, we headed to the Library where I picked up the next 3 books in a series I've been reading by Marne Davis Kellogg about a woman my age who is a cat burglar. Really fun reads.
Then down to Appleton WI to Hobby Lobby to buy a brass door knocker for my dollhouse-in-progress. Also found brass door handles, brass house numbers, a wooden floor for 2 of the rooms, and landscaping items for the outside of the dollhouse.
Then we went to International Market where Boyd shopped for wine.
On to Penzey's Spice Shop where Boyd also picked up some must-haves (remember he's the cook at our house).
I ran into a shop next door and found a great tunic (they're in) for fall.
We finished up at Starbucks with Grande Green Tea Frappacinos. I love them!
Day over... came home... 3 packages on the porch. WOW!
I especially was pleased with the fabric (in above photo) from 'Fat Quarters'. The fabric on the top is a Holly Jolly 'Jelly Roll'. They just flattened it out for shipping. And a yard of each of the other holiday prints.
It felt like Christmas today!
Hugs, Joni
P.S. Just turned on the TV and they're showing reruns of PROJECT RUNWAY... my favorite TV show. Tonight they're going to announce the designers for season #4. Can't wait! If you haven't seen Project Runway and you love design and fabric and sewing, then you'll love this show.

Tuesday, September 4, 2007

Kristin and the Boys

I am totally addicted to digital scrapping at the moment, although I just got a package full of the new 'Love, Elsie' scrapbooking collection... 'Jack & Abby'. I'm anxious to create something with them as the colors are so Fall-like and the paper and embellishments are adorable little houses and cupcakes and... oh, just lots of cute stuff!

The white fuzzy dog is Wyley... Wendy and her fiance Darin's new pup. The other dog is Alfred who Darin rescued from the aftermath of Katrina in New Orleans. Alfred is afraid of water and cameras. So he was doing a pretty good job of sitting still for this photo. He's a scared little guy but is getting lots of love and attention. He gets along very well with his new little brother Wyley.

Kristin said that it was well over 105 degrees each day that she was visiting, so they spent a lot of time in the pool. She's running a half marathon in Chicago next weekend so she did water aerobics while they chatted in the pool each day instead of running in the heat. Smart girl, Kristin!!


Labor Day Weekend 2007

My oldest daughter Kristin, who lives in Chicago, flew to Phoenix to visit her sister Wendy for the holiday weekend. I always feel so at peace when they're together. I'm so glad they are so close.
Yesterday Wendy emailed me some pictures from their time together so that I could make some layouts (my request).
This is a photo of Kristin in Wendy's pool. A must in Phoenix as it is sooooooo hot!!
Off to make some more layouts, and get on the treadmill.

Monday, September 3, 2007

I'm Flattered!

Wow... look what was waiting for me when I got home from a hard afternoon of shopping at Barnes & Noble and JoAnn's Fabric... hee, hee. Lucy of Lucy Locket Recycled Her Pocket nominated me for the 'Nice Matters Award'. Thanks Lucy! I'm delighted to get it and especially from someone as NICE as you are. You show so much caring through your 'posts' and comments to everyone.

Now for the really fun part... I get to nominate some people who I think show a continuous amount of 'NICE' through their blogs. If any of you have already gotten this award, that's OK. It will just let you know how NICE I think you are too!

1. Angie of This is My Real Blog
2. Nicolette from Devliegendekoe
3. Helen from Hancock Updates
4. Wanda from Brushstrokes From My Heart
5. Melanie from Lit Chick
6. Isabelle from In This Life

Ladies, you can post this award on your site and choose some people to nominate. Have fun! That's what it's all about.

Love you all,

Sunday, September 2, 2007

Love this program!

This is the program I'm using for my latest layouts. I bought it on QVC when they had one of their 24 hour scrapbooking programs. I really love it. I have made many little mini-books with it... I just hadn't made a 'digital layout'.
The program has 'Quick Pages' (pre-designed) or 'Create your own' pages (my choice). I've bought most of their kits so that I have lots of paper to choose from and lots of embellishments to play with.
I use PhotoShop Elements 4 to edit my photos first.

The program does have some limitations compared to PhotoShop... but, I like it.
PS I think this was my 92nd post so Big Giveaway coming up!!!