Monday, December 30, 2013

Goodbye 2013

It's time to say goodbye to 2013 and hello to 2014.

We had some ups and downs this year, but made it through great.

We had to put Aurora to sleep in January.

I went to my first tatting conference in April. I had such a good time. I can't wait til the 2014 conference. I got to meet people I've only known online for years.

We got a new puppy named Zura in April

Nate and Naina got engaged on September 15th. They will be married in India on August 9th and then in the States on October 25th.

I turned 50 this year. We had a really fun party. We had what I called a drop over party. People came and went. No big deal. No pressure to stay for a long time. The kids all cooked and I think we had 35 guests total that day. It was such a good time.

Jessica and Calvin bought a new home in Upper Marlboro and had another daughter. Makaylee Marie Robinson was born on November 12th. Shawn and I are her Godparents also. Mariyah is a great big sister.

D'Artagnan got a leg injury and went to stay in Ohio for 5 weeks to rest and recoup. He came back and is still limping. He's managing just fine. Sometimes he's ok and sometimes his leg hurts. I think he'll get better.

My SSI was approved. That was a huge relief for me.

We also opened an Etsy store and Shawn is designing tatting shuttles. He is great at making them.
We started doing woodworking and I am having a ball learning how to do all kinds of woodworking. We got a 1952 Shopsmith and it has a lathe on it. I want to learn how to turn wood. I want to make some bobbin lace bobbins. Oh, that's because I am learning how to do bobbin lace now. It is a challenge, but I'm excited about it.

I made most of my Christmas gifts this year. I had a great time making things. I made a purse for Olivia and she thought it was store bought. That was a great compliment. Nate got a knitted scarf and he loves it. Naina got a slouchy hat and some yoga socks. She loved them also.

So, here we are. I am getting ready to say goodbye to 2013 and hello to 2014. I'm so ready for it.

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Merry Christmas to all

Good day and Merry Christmas to all.

My husband made me the best gift. He made me a brand new tatting shuttle and a wooden bookmarker. He carved it from a piece of cherry wood.

But today is not about my presents.

Today is about the birth of our precious Lord and Savior. As we sit today and enjoy our gifts, our families, and our meal remember the reason we are celebrating. Jesus Christ left Heaven and came to this sinful, immoral world to give us hope and save us. Please don't trivialzie this day.

May God bless you and your family.

Friday, December 20, 2013

Bobbin Lace bookmark done

Horray. I have finished my firsts official bobbin lace project. I did a bookmark and I only made one small mistake. Well, that's not really true. I made several mistakes, but I caught most of them and unlaced back to the mistakes.
I'm very proud of my efforts.
Now I have to get a tatted bookmark done and I'm finished with Christmas gifts.

Update on CNC Machine

Here is an update on the CNC machine. My brother brought over a cpu with XP loaded on it. We got the machine axis' to move but the spindle won't turn.
I contacted the seller again and they recommended that I change the fuse in the spindle. I haven't had time to do this, but they have been right so far, so I am thinking that this will be the last issue. Now the only thing I have to worry about is how to use the darn machine and get images into G code to engrave. I am thankful that I know a company that uses an engraving machine and they have agreed to assit me with converting images.
God is so good. I credit Him for me getting all of this help with this machine. If it were just up to me, I'd have an $800 door stop right now. I'm totally lost with all of this stuff.

On another note, I've been teaching myself bobbin lace. I'm almost done with my first big project. A bookmark that I am going to give as a gift for Christmas. I am using 14 pairs of bobbins. I was a little intimidated at first, but once I got going it was pretty straight forward. I've learned to unlace, fix mistakes and alter a pattern. I'm having a blast. The hardest part is keeping the tread from unraveling from the bobbins. The half hitch just isn't cutting it with some of the thread. I will have to check with the folks on my FB bobbin lace page to get some advice on that.
I will post a picture once I'm finished.

And another positive thing. I have all of my Christmas gifts wrapped and under the tree. I took Olivia to get keys made for her car. I got some beads organized and got some more storage boxes. I want to start 2014 organized and ready to go. I am going to call this a successful day.

Monday, December 16, 2013

CNC Machine not working

So, The engraving machine is still not working. My brother "dumb downed" the computer to run Windows Vista 32 bit. Still not working. We uninstalled and reinstalled the software. Still not working.

I contacted the seller and let them know that I was having problems with the machine. I let them know all the steps I took to get the machine up and running.

I got an email back from the seller telling me that they will work with me to get a satisfactory solution. They want some info about what I have been doing and what computer I have been using. We think the control box is the issue. The software will send info to the box but the machine won't run.

I just heard from a friend that her husband thinks its the control box as well. I am going to send them the info and see what happens.

In the mean time, I have been working on getting my Christmas gifts made. I got 4 pair of earrings and 4 necklaces done last night. I have several more items to make - one knited, a couple tatted and a couple bobbin lace items.

I am so excited to be almost finished and it's only 9 days left til Christmas. Nothing like cutting it close.

More info to come with the engraving machine.

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

One of those days

Have you ever had one of those days?

I made a shuttle this weekend for a shuttle exchange with someone on facebook. Shawn said it was probably the best shuttle I've made so far.

Today I packaged it up and went to the post office. I mailed it off and then went over to Target to get some more Christmas shopping done. I got gas for Shawn's car and then came home.

I had a little lunch and then started to work on the round robin doily.

Boy I've had a boring day. I felt just lazy today and didn't do much. I tatted. I walked my dog. I watched some TV, I played computer games. I messed with my kids on facebook.

Shawn came home and we had some pizza because I didn't want to cook.

So then I finished my portion of the round robin doily and then watched more TV. UGH. My day was so dull.

Now it's after midnight and I'm not tired. Facebook is boring. Nothing good is on Pinterest. Ebay had been checked multipul times.

I'm going to bed.

Sunday, December 8, 2013

No tree up yet

So, Shawn decided that he didn't want to put the Christmas tree up today. He wanted to work on making Christmas presents. So he did. I hung out with my pets and then tried to get my engraving machine working. My brother and I worked on it for a few hours, then we figured that my computer isn't compatible. He has to take my laptop to his house and turn it from a Windows 64 bit to a Windows 32 bit. He's going to bring the laptop back tomorrow and then I am up and running.

I am getting excited all over again that I will be able to finally make engraved shuttles.

Next I need to use my lathe to turn some bobbin lace bobbins.

Friday, December 6, 2013

Putting the tree up.

I am finally putting my Christmas tree up tomorrow. I usually put it up the day after Thanksgiving, but this year I didn't do it yet. I've been a little distracted. Shawn has been working evenings and I've been trying to get my gifts made.

I'm trying to get into the Christmas spirit. It's hard when you have to deal with someone stealing your credit card number, making a fake card and charging a ton of stuff. Thank God the credit card company is monitoring the accounts. I just wish they would have caught it sooner. The theifs got away with over $650 worth of merchandise at several different stores in Brooklyn NY. It breaks my heart that stores get ripped off because people don't want to be honest.

My neighbor is coming over tomorrow or Sunday to help me FINALLY get my engraving machine working.

I also just found the wonderful world of pen blanks on eBay. I ordered a bunch. They are the perfect size for making shuttles and I am going to try and turn some to make bobbins for bobbin lace. I found a wood shop that is local that throws away their extra or "scrap" wood. It's just the perfect size for what I need. They are going to work with me on supplying my needs. They have tons of exotic wood that they have been giving to their employees to burn in their fireplaces. WHAT? They are going to hook Nate up also. One strange thing happened when I was at their shop. Their mastif bit me in the rear end. No skin was broken but I'm a little sore and bruised. Strange for a mastif to be aggressive. I was more shocked than injured. Despite the little dog incident, I'm happy that I found them. They sold me over 100 blocks of Zebrawood that are the perfect size to make either 2 shuttles or turn for 1 bobbin. They also gave me a bunch of exotic woods to try and use. I'm so excited to try everything. I just need to have the time to do everything. I think that once my neighbor comes over and helps me, my engraving machine will be running non stop.

I'll keep you posted.

Saturday, November 30, 2013

Long week

It has been a long long week.

Our week started off with a great sermon at church.

I had 3 drs appts this week. Thanksgiving happened. Shawn has been working evenings so one of his employees could have a vacation. It's strange for me to be home in the evenings without him. Only one more week of evenings left. I'm enjoying him being home in the mornings. We get to eat breakfast together.

Thanksgiving we had 7 people for dinner. Or I should call it lunch. We ate at 11:30 am so Shawn could relax after eating and before work. I put the turkey in at 5 am and by 9 it was done. I use a cooking bag. I let it rest on the counter while I cooked everything else. When Shawn "carved" it, it fell completely off the bone. The bones were so clean. The turkey was still hot and juicy. So good.

We put the ham in the crockpot with some fruit juices, brown sugar, honey, and some cloves and cooked it on low. Nicholas (my nephew) couldn't stop eating it. Funny thing is, I always make the ham that way. I guess I need to cook it more often.

I tried something different this year. I asked each person at the table to say something nice about every other person at the table, instead of saying what they are thankful for. By then end, we were all crying. It was so touching to hear some of the things people had to say. What a blessing it was to hear how people feel about each other and the advice and uplifting thoughts. I think that will be our new tradition at every holiday table and at each Sunday dinner.

I did not do any Black Friday shopping. I stayed home and worked on a Christmas gift I am making for someone in my family. I finally finished it today. And I have already started the next one.

Today was also the Ohio State and Michigan football game. The biggest rivalry in NCAA football. Shawn and I are definately Ohio State fans. The game came down to the last 30 seconds or so of the game. We won 42-41. It was a real nail biter. It was so dramatic that I felt like I was playing myself.

This evening Shawn and I had a marathon of Christian movies. We watched Revelation Road, The Encounter and the Encounter 2.

Now it's time to go to bed and start a new week. I can't believe that tomorrow is December 1st. Where did the year go?

I have got to get more Christmas gifts made or finished. I am praying that I have enough time to get everything done.

Saturday, November 23, 2013

Bobbin Lace

I completed my first bobbin lace piece last night. I made a few mistakes, but I'm pretty proud of it. I posted on Facebook and got a few critiques. One being, no knots. Oh well, this is going to be a bookmarker so I wanted fringe. I started a piece and messed it up, so I cut the bobbins off and there was way too much thread on the bobbins to throw away so I just tied knots and started again. Here is a picture of what I did:

Then tonight I got a package from Lacis. I ordered some bobbins with the hole in the bottom for adding spangles. I spangled 6 sets of bobbins tonight. Here is what they look like:

I had fun doing them, but it took quite a lot of time.
I'm getting into this bobbin lace thing. I've wanted to learn for so long and am happy that I finally took the time to do so.
I'm not leaving any of my other crafts behind, but just adding to my list of talents.

Monday, November 18, 2013

Getting ready for Christmas

So, I've been making things for my kids for Christmas. I can't even talk about what I am making on Facebook or here because my kids stalk my posts. HAHAHA.

I am also trying to learn bobbin lace. One of my friends on Facebook sent me a link for a wonderful site by an amazing lady who explains step by step what to do. I can't wait to sit down and get to it.
Every time I try to sit down, something comes up and I don't do it. I am going to get some time to do this. After checking out this web site, I feel better about what to do and feel a little more comfortable with the process.

So I'm not doing much else right now. I need to get back to my book. I feel like I will be able to deal with some of the memories. It will be a slow process, but I can start again.

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Bobbin Lace

Yea. My bobbin lace pillow arrived today. I'm so excited. I also got 2 each bobbins made with my name engraved on them. One set blue, one set red. They are so pretty. I'm excited to start using them.

I got some pastel threads to start using in size 20. I can tat and make bookmarks with them. If I get better at it, I will make some for gifts for Christmas.

I also got 2 tatting shuttles honoring England's newest heir to the throne. HRH Prince George. They are hand painted and have his date of birth on them.  Here is a picture of them plus the bobbins.

And I also got a package from my wonderful friend who lives in Hungary. Szilvia is a shuttle maker also and she sent me these adorable shuttles. Mini Lady Hoare and another great design of shuttle. She also sent me two keychains of dog bones. One pink and one blue. Fore each of my dogs. I just love them. Szilvia is so generous.

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Makaylee is here

Today, 11/12/13 at 9:21am our newest God Daughter was born. Her name is Makaylee Marie Robinson. She weighed in at 6lbs 10oz and 19.5 inches long. Mommy and baby are doing well. I was blessed enough to be there for her first bath.

She already shows her own personality.

We are so happy for her parents, Jessica and Calvin and her big sister Mariyah.

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Wonderful weekend

I have had the best weekend so far. The Nate and Naina came home for Olivia's 21st birthday celebration. Olivia was told they couldn't come home. She got here about 10pm and they rolled in almost 2 hours later. She as happy. We had 5 people, 5 dogs and 1 cat all in the house and it was all great.

We went to a Christian concert with TobyMac, Mandisa, Brandon Heath, Jamie Grace, Colton Dixon, Chris August and introducing Capitol Kings. TobyMac's band DiverCity was amazing. It was such a great show. We had so much fun. Olivia, Shawn and I got the VIP experience. I got to ask Chris August and Capitol Kings a question in the Q&A session and Olivia got to ask TobyMac a question. It was so fun.

We sang, danced, praised, screamed, laughed, clapped hands and worshiped God all evening long. I was so happy to see Shawn singing and dancing and having a great time. He really needed to have that break.

Olivia and got so much gear from the show. We got every artist's CD. The music is amazing. Every artist could and should be a headliner.

I am so pleased that Olivia chose to spend her 21st birthday celebration at a Christian concert instead of going out drinking and going to a bar. My girl is such a responsible young lady. She makes us so proud. Our son is an amazing man and he also makes us so proud. We are truly blessed by God with such great kids and such a great life.

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Waiting, waiting, waiting

UGH, I am waiting for Nate to get here to learn how to use my engraving machine.

If he doesn't get here soon, I'm going to ask Dennis, my next door neighbor to help me. I have already downloaded the proper software and am so ready to learn how to use it. I've checked out the manual and have no idea what it says.

So while I'm waiting I'm working on my items for an exchange that I'm involved in on my Facebook Tatting Shuttle Addicts page. I have 3 partners and we are to send a shuttle, thread, a tatted item, beads and a post card or card from where we are from. They have to be mailed out by November 30th. I will be ready. I am going to hand dye the thread and probably make the shuttles.

I also got some shuttles made out of plastic and want to decorate them. Who knows what I will do for the shuttles. I guess my exchange partners are expecting me to send hand made ones since I'm a shuttle maker.

Well, waiting. waiting. waiting

Friday, November 1, 2013

It's here!!!!

After a long wait, it's finally here. I got my engraving machine. I have it set on a table but haven't put it together yet. I need to download the software and figure out how to use it. Not very many instructions came with it.

I am so excited to start using it. Now that I have it, I'm a little intimidated. What if I make a mistake? What if I spent all that money and I can't make anything with it?

I will work on my butt off to make good shuttles and whatever else I can make with it.

Time to get working.

Thursday, October 31, 2013

Frustrating day I had here

So, I went to bed really late last night and since Jessica is so close to delivering, I am keeping my phone on and by my bed. So at 9am I started getting text messages.

My next door neighbor was out back making his grand daughter a doll house. I went over and we started talking. He happened to mention that Harbor Freight had a mini table saw for sale. Since the store is only 15 - 20 minutes away, I decided to go down and check it out to see if it was something I could use to make shuttles. I get to the store and had to ask 3 different people for help after running around the store for about 20 minutes looking for it myself.

Well after all that, they tell me that they don't have any and the girl at the register will call the Glen Burnie store to check their stock. I went and stood at the register for about 15 mins while she took customer after customer - ignoring me after she initially acknowledged that she was to call another store for me. Mind you - her register was closed. I finally got tired of waiting and called the store myself. The man on the phone assured me that they had several in stock. I asked him to double check because I was coming from more than 30 minutes away - at the beginning of rush hour. He said that he couldn't leave his register, but assured me that they had a good supply.

I get into my truck and drive to the other store - 40 minute drive. I look all over the store and don't see the saw. I had to hunt down an employee to help me. This boy was scatterbrained. He acted like I was bothering him by asking for help. (I thought that was his job). So anyway, we go looking for the saw. Since he's the only employee on the floor, every customer in the store was vying for his attention. He walked away from me several times. He finally went to the register and asked the guy there if they had any Mighty Mini Table Saws. The guy said - yes they are on aisle 3. Well, aisle 3 was clamps and knee pads. NO TABLE SAWS. The boy left me again and another customer tried to help me. I got frustrated and went to the register and stood there while the boy was taking calls and helping other customers. After about 30 - YES 30 mintues, I finally demanded he help me. Again, he goes on the floor and decides that they don't have any. I looked up the item number from their web site and gave the number to this boy. Something he should have done 45 mins earlier. He then decided to look it up and told me that they didn't have any in stock. I started to blow. I demanded to have the store manager's number. He went to get this cell phone. HIS CELL PHONE. He then played with his phone for 5 more minutes before I again asked him to give me the store managers name and number. He said he didn't have the number. I asked him to write down the manager's name and the store number then made him give me his name and the other employee's number. (if you know me, you know that I was calm for about 1 hour longer than usual)

All of this took 2 1/2 hours. I was beyond furious.

So I get home and Shawn and I got the lathe together and the blade needs to be replaced. huge disappointment. Oh well, I got to use the machine.

So, now it's after 11pm and I'm exhausted. I forgot to eat dinner and will have to get a small snack and go to bed.

The upside is that my engraving machine will be here TOMORROW.

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Interesting week I have here.

This has been an interesting week. I found out a little while ago that my engraving machine will be here on Friday. I looked at the shipping info and the darn thing weighs 72 pounds. How am I going to pick the darn thing up.  I have a drs appt on Friday and hope it doesn't come while I'm out. It's supposed to rain on Friday. I guess I will have to get the neighbor to receive the package if I'm not here.

I also have a package from Handy Hands coming today, tomorrow I get a package from Fire Mountain Gems. Monday I got a package from Lacis and yesterday I got a package from a purchase off of eBay. A package every day this week. It's like Christmas all week, except I've paid for all the packages.

Speaking of Christmas. I have decided that I am going to make most of my gifts this year. I want to use most of the skills I have for a variety of things. I'm going to bobbin lace some things, tat some things, crochet others and hopefully knit others.

I'm crocheting something now. It's coming along nicely and quickly.

I also started doing a new exercise routine. I started "Planking" on Monday. I have another exercise routine I'm starting next Monday. I need to get in shape and lose weight. I'm so out of shape. I have a goal for a certain amount of weight to lose before Nate and Naina's wedding. I need to start working now so I'm not in a panic next summer to lose a bunch of weight. I just have to get off my butt and do the work. I think once I see the weight coming off, I will get more motivated to lose.

And my therapist wants me to go back to my book. I need to get back into writing. I also have to prepare to be around my first husband at the wedding. I have about a year to prepare, so I think I'll do OK. The Book, The Book, The Book. I am curious to see if it will be good enough for anyone to read. My therapist says that I am very expressive when I write. We'll see.

So anyway, I'm going to bed. It's late or early, depends on if you are still awake, or getting up.

Sunday, October 27, 2013

Linda Davies' doily

I have finally finished the Linda Davies' doily I  have been working on for a long time. I havn't worked on it consistanlty, so it took longer than I planned, but I finally got it done.

I don't like to block tatting because it messes up the picots and rings. That is exactly what happened to this doily. I had to wash it tho, because I did it in white thread. I would not want to have it not look white.

I steamed it and now will adjust the picots and rings when I get some free time. Here are the before and after blocking pix
Before blocking 

After blocking
So now I'm working on some Christmas gifts. I think this year I will make a lot of the gifts I give. I am going to do some bobbin lace gifts, some tatted gifts, some crocheted gifts and some knited gifts. If I have the time, I will also quilt some. I'd better get started. Lots to do and not a lot of time to do it.

Friday, October 25, 2013

Hand dyed thread flying off the shelves

Wow. In the last 5 days, I have sold more HDT than I can imagine. It's flying off the shelves. I am going to have to start making more soon.

I don't know if it's the colors or if more people are fining my Etsy store. This is the 4th trip to the post office this week and I am not going with just one envelope each time. It's nice to know that people are liking the thread and colors.

Off to the post office and then to get more thread ready to be dyed. And I thought this was going to be a nice and lazy day. Nope.

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

CNC engraver finally ordered

Woo Hoo. I am finally able to order my CNC machine. I will be able to engrave shuttles and make some that are lacy.

It should take about a week for it to get here. I am SOOOOOOOO excited. The money is finally available for me to purchase it. I can't wait to see what I come up with and what I can design and make.

Saturday, October 19, 2013

New Tools

Shawn and I went to the Md Home and Garden show today with Wade and Renee. We had a great time. Had breakfast first at the Silver Diner in Laurel. Ran into someone I was in the Police Academy with.

At the show, we stopped by the "Tomboy" booth. It's a line of tools for women. Made to fit our smaller hands and lighter than male tools. I got some really great tools today. I got a full toolbox, a cordless drill, a Die Grinder, Screwdriver/Drill, Scissors, Precision Circular Saw, Reciprocating Saw and Angle Drill heads. It also includes various bits and blades, and an AC Adapter neatly organized and stored in a beautiful aluminum carrying case. Some of the tools need to be shipped because the dealer was sold out.

I am going to be able to do some really nice work with these tools.Now if I could just get my engraving machine (Hint Hint Shawn), I will be great. I am excited to see what beautiful shuttles I will be able to create with these.

More to come.

Friday, October 18, 2013

Getting my beads organized

So, I've been working all evening at getting my beads organized and purging the ones I don't need anymore. I have good sized box full of beads that I am giving up. I will let Gen take her pick of what she wants, then I will offer my tatting friends the rest. If I don't get rid of them with my tatting friends, eBay they go.

Some of these beads have been in my posession for about 20 years when I started my jewelry business. I'm keeping all of my seed beads and most of my 4 and 6 mm semi precious stone beads, but the rest are going.

Happy to be purging. Watch out, the cross stitch stuff may be next.

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Hand Dyed Thread DONE and for sale

I just finished posting the latest batch of hand dyed thread in my Etsy store. The store name is NAGStudio. I am so happy that it's finished. I have some bold colors to offer this go around. Now it's time to sit back and wait for some sales.

My hands are stained with dye and my feet hurt from standing for 2 +  hours dyeing the thread, but I am really happy with the results.

I only had one skein that didn't turn out the way I wanted it to. I tried to dye it pink and black and the black bled into the pink. Oh well, 1 out of 32 isn't bad. I think I'll keep it and use it for something. Not sure what, but it won't go to waste.

I also got 3 shuttles done today. Two purple heart and one maple. I really like the way they came out but I sanded the finger nail off of one of my fingers. Boy does that hurt. Good thing it will grow back.

Now I need to organize my thread, tatting supplies and my beads. I'm trying to get and stay organized.

Monday, October 14, 2013

hdt almost done

So, I have wound 12 50 yard skeins of size 20 thread and 10 50 yard skeins of size 40 thread. In the morning I will be dyeing it and then hopefully by tomorrow evening I will have posted it in my Etsy store.

I'm going for bolder colors. I tend to go for more pastel colors since I love to tat with pastels, but this time, I'm going to get a little bold. I can't wait to see what comes out. I want to do a couple confetti skeins as well. They are so much fun to tat with.

On another note, Shawn has to go to work tonight and work for 12 hours. He usually works day shift and it's going to be hard for him to stay awake all night. I pray that he is able to make it the whole night and be OK to drive home tomorrow.

I have 3 tatting shuttles to finish so I can mail them in the morning. Two purple heart and one maple. I also need to mail a test shuttle out.

Shawn made a new type of shuttle and I have 3 out there now. I haven't heard any feedback yet on them. I'm sending one more out tomorrow. The design is really cool and I hope to be able to get positive feedback and put it up for sale soon.

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

More HDT coming

I am planning on getting more hand dyed thread done and posted in my Etsy store soon. I have some Christmas colors and winter colors planned. I love love love to do pastel colors but will try to stay away from them this time. I want some bolder colors this time.

If you have a color you want to see in my store, please comment and I will do my best to make any requested colors.

Check my store later this week or next week for the new colors to be ready for purchase.

Friday, October 4, 2013

teaching tatting

I have been tatting for about 15 years. I picked up the artform very quickly. I got the flip on the first try. Not many people do that. So I am not bragging, just stating a fact. I am going somewhere with this one. I have been teaching tatting to anyone who wants to learn at no charge. The person that taught me charged $56 for 3 lessons that were 2 hours each. I bartered with her and paid her with one of my grandmother's favorite tatting books. I regret giving that book up. I never want anyone to have to give something up to learn to tat. I teach for free.

There was a post on facebook, on one of the tatting groups that I subscribe to, asking if anyone was in my area. So of course I responded. I'm always anxious to help. Tomorrow I will be meeting with her to help her with her tatting. She's been tatting for under 2 months and is just now picking up the shuttle. I'm excited to help another tatter.

Sunday, September 29, 2013

50th birthday celebration

I am a blessed woman. Yesterday was my 50th birthday. We had a different kind of celebration. I came up with an idea that I thought was kind of unique for such a 'big' day. We had a 'drop over' party. We put the word out that anyone who wanted to could drop over to celebrate with me. My kids cooked most of the food and we had a LOT of food.

I expected about 14 or 15 people to come over. It ended up being 31 people over at various times during the day. I felt so blessed and humbled that so many people took time out of their day to come over to celebrate with me. I got some great gifts and lots of flowers.

Today I am exhausted. I didn't even make it to church. I actually went to bed before the party was completely over. Now I do have to say that the only ones left up were Nate, Jessica and Calvin, but they were still going strong talking and just being family.

There were a few hickups along the way yesterday, and we got thru them.

All in all, it was a fabulous day. I'm 50 and Fabulous.

Thursday, September 26, 2013

idol hands

I  haven't tatted in almost a week. I've been so busy getting my house ready for my birthday that I am so exhausted in the evenings, I just sit here.

I believe that you should not go into a new birth year with a messy house. I have been neglecting my house the past months and really needed to do some things like shampoo my carpets and clean all the windows. I also organized my sewing desk and fabric shelves. It feels so good to walk through my house and know that everything is clean.

I just with that the home repairs were all completed. 2 years ago, my husband and son tore the front of my house down and replaced the doors and window. They did a great job and it looks great from the outside, but the inside is still insulation and raw wood. I still don't even have my house numbers back up yet. They both have been very busy and I understand the delay, but I hate that I have become used to the look of timbers at my front door.

Well, off to bed for the final clean of my kitchen and deep clean of the appliances.

Two more days until I'm 50.

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Wedding Anniversary and 50th birthday

Tomorrow, September 26th, 2013, I will celebrate my 22nd wedding anniversary. I am so blessed to be married to the love of my life, my best friend, and an amazing man. He and I were told that because we only dated for 4 months before we got married and that some people didn't know me very well, that we would never last. I think they were wrong. I am not saying that our marriage has been all roses and rainbows, but we stuck together and hung on for dear life. Now that we are older, we really don't argue, fight or get mad at each other. We've done that and been there. We've moved on and are just happy to spend our time together. My husband is my hero. He is a hard working man who lets me have my craft obsessions. He knows that I will take care of our home and family.

OK, so now that I've spoken about our anniversary, my 50th birthday is two days later. On September 28th, I will turn 50. I'm excited to be turning 50. I know that I don't feel, look and definately don't act 50. It's just a number. Sure I have aches and pains, but who doesn't? I was a runner in high school and lifted weights for about 20 years. (a long time ago). One of my personal heros - NFL New York Giant's Wide Receiver's Stacy Robinson (deceased) told me that the more active and athletic you are as a young person, the more your bones will ache and creek when you get older. He sure wasn't lying.

We are having a celebration at our house. We are doing it a little different this year. We are having a drop over party - meaning, that after 11am on Saturday, anyone who wants to can come on over and stay for as long as they want - within reason. I don't expect a ton of guests, but I know that those who love me will be here. I told everyone that gifts are welcome and appreciated. Every year I always tell anyone who asks that I don't want gifts. Well, this year I'm going to be a little selfish. I think I deserve them once in a while.

I have been cleaning my house from top to bottom. Not because we are having guests, but it doesn't hurt, but because I don't believe that anyone should go into another year of life without having their house in order. Some think of that expression differently, as I do, but I also want my physical home in order. So it's off to bed. I have more cleaning to do tomorrow.

Monday, September 23, 2013

Fake Lydia Pinkham Shuttle

I won an auction on eBay for a Lydia Pinkham tatting shuttle. I was very happy to get another one for my collection. I received the shuttle the other day and was extremely disappointed when I opened the package and discovered that it was a fake. I compared it to my real Lydia Pinkham shuttle to make sure.
I contacted the seller and advised her that the shuttle was not real. She did not believe me. She said that the shuttle was real and that all Lydia Pinkham tatting shuttles were not made the same. WHAT???? Then she went on to tell me that she posted pictures of the shuttle and I should have looked at them before I bid on the auction.
I have never heard that there were more than one style of Lydia Pinkham shuttle before. I took some pictures of it and some of my real Pinkham shuttle and sent it to a few people that I trust to know the difference. Of course they confirmed what I thought to be true. It is a fake.
I haven't decided if I should send the shuttle back, or not. I think the seller will fight me on the return. If I persue the issue, I hope that either eBay or PayPal will help out.
Here are pictures of the two shuttles. You tell me what you think.

Fake Shuttle back picture

Real shuttle back picture

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Designing bookmark pattern

UGH, I am getting frustrated. I have been trying to design a bookmark for 3 days. I have done the design in my drawing program 12 times so far. I have partially test tatted it 3 times.

Each test tat has come up with some pretty interesting mistakes that may turn into earring patterns later, but for now I just want to get this bookmark done.

I also got an education on what constitutes a new design. Even if I change the stitch count, if it's been done before it's not my design. I am also getting an education on putting a design on paper - self imposed. I have been making rings and chains and split rings and joins and picots all on paper. It looks good on paper, but try and tat it out - doesn't work like I thought. Adjustments, adjustments, adjustments.

I have wound shuttles and wound shuttles and wound shuttles. So now I have a bunch of shuttles with too much thread to throw away and not enough for a good sized project. I guess I will have a lot of daisies of the same color for my tablecloth, or maybe I can make some coasters out of them. Good idea Monica.

Thursday, September 12, 2013

new wood for shuttles

Today I went to the lumber shop because we were running low on Cherry wood for shuttle making. I took my nephew with me because we were hanging out together today.

I picked up some Cherry wood, but I also picked up some Aromatic Cedar, Zebra wood, Paduck, and some Yellow Heart.

When I got home, we started to organize the wood in the new storage are and found out that I also have Pango Pango, Honduras Rosewood, Quilted Maple, Marblewood, Walnut, Mahogany, Oak, Pine, Poplar, Leopard Wood, Purple Heart, and a few more. I think I have a good supply and variety of wood to make some shuttles.

I am waiting to talk to my son to make the final decision on which CNC machine I am going to get. Once I decide, I'm going to order it. There is a shop in Ohio that I would love to get it from because they are close to us, they are in the US, free shipping and I would have the machine within 5 days instead of 4-6 weeks. The prices are a little higher but the fact that I would have the machine within a week would surely make up for the difference in cost. The machine is not the original one that I wanted. It's about the same machine. I'm not sure which one I will choose. I want to talk it over with my son. I trust his opinion. I'm sending him the specs now.

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Rough Day today

Today is a day that I really would not like to remember. It's the day that changed my country forever. 12 years ago today it also changed my husband. As a DC Police Officer, he volunteered to go to the Pentagon to help. He came home several days later a changed man. For 48 of the hours he was away from his family, he carried people out of the Pentagon. He told me later that he had to walk on dead bodies to carry people out. It's a rough day for him today, along with the rest of the country.

I am choosing to remember today as the day my dog was born. September 12, 2006 D'Artagnan was born. We picked him up from the breeder on Novermber 3rd. He is such a gentle sweet pit bull. He changes all of the stereotypes of the breed. My gentle boy is so sweet. I love him more than I could ever imagine loving a pet.

I will work on some tatting and move on to tomorrow.

I am turning 50 in 17 days and will celebrate my 22nd wedding anniversary in 15 days. That is what I am thinking about today.

Friday, September 6, 2013

Oh my goodness

My day has been so full. I picked up my bobbin lace beginner kit at the store today and am so excited that I will now be able to learn. I have wanted to know how to bobbin lace for so long.

Well, then my dogs were outside and ran away. We searched the neighborhood and surrounding neighborhoods and finally found them. D'Artagnan has injuries to both back legs. One back leg has a gash and one we aren't sure what is wrong but he won't put any weight on it. Zura seems to be ok, just some scratches.

Some nice lady found them in the middle of a busy street and rescued them for us.

OK, so I had to bathe them and check for ticks and fleas. Found none.

So we cooked dinner and the dishes are washed. Jessica and Calvin have finally agreed on a name for the baby. Her name will be Makaylee Marie Robinson. They also will settle on their house on the 30th of September. So happy for them.

Shawn and I are going on a motorcycle ride with some folks from our former CMA chapter tomorrow. We need a nice relaxing ride.

I haven't really had my head into tatting lately. I've tried and am still working on my heart pattern but I just have too much on my mind to really give anything my full attention.

Hopefully my life will quiet down soon and I can get some real creating done.

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Beads and Tatting and so much more

So, I did get to go back to the bead store and the stock was still 80% off. I got more 24k gold Delicas. I got more seed beads and am happy with all of my purchases.

I am going to incorporate them into my tatting and crochet. I got a bunch of size 15 beads that I am going to tat with. Carol convinced me to get them. We'll see how it goes.

I'm a little overwhelmed with all the beads I have and getting them organized. My bead shelf is kind of blocked right now so I don't really have access to it. The room is housing household goods for someone. They should be cleared out within a month or so.

I'm sad that I can't go to Palmetto Tatting Days this year. It's this weekend. Maybe Shawn and I will go on a motorcycle ride. Who knows. Maybe it will be a nice relaxing lazy weekend. I might just work on tatting all weekend now that the AC is back up and running. I didn't want to tat anything while it was so hot in the house.

Off to craftworld I go right now.

Thursday, August 29, 2013

More beads beads beads

Tomorrow I am going back up to PA to meet up with some of the Ladies that I tat with up there. One of our stops is going to be the bead store that is going out of business.

I'm not sure if she has marked her beads down any further or if she will have any beads left at all. I'm hoping to pick up some more 24k Delica beads and some more crystals. I will probably be disappointed if she doesn't have anything else left. Last time I was there she had so many Delica's that she had to just dump them on a table in a huge pile. But that WAS more than a week ago.

Either way it will be a fun day hanging out with the tatting ladies.

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Chris Hinton shuttles

Well, I have been trying to locate Chris Hinton to let him know that I am going to start engraving designs on my shuttles like he used to do. I just wanted to let him know out of respect for his work.

No one seems to know how to reach him. I tried emailing him and even went to his web site. The site is down and the email bounced back to me.

Shawn wants to try and make a similar shuttle like his but out of a single piece of wood and we want to engrave them. Since I can't reach him, I am going to move forward with my ideas and start making those types of shuttles in the very near future.

The engraving machine will be purchased tomorrow. I will have a brief period where I will have to learn how to use it, but I will be up and running SOON. I can't wait to get my hands on that machine. I already have ideas on shuttle designs and engraving ideas.

If you have something you would like to see on a shuttle, please let me know. I will do my best to get it done.

As Phil Robertson says " HAPPY HAPPY HAPPY "

Saturday, August 24, 2013

Engraving machine

Well, Shawn and I have finally decided to get the engraving machine to add to our tools. It will open up a whole new level of abilities for our shuttles and more. I am really excited. I will be ordering it soon.
I am going to be able to do so much more to design my shuttles. I will be able to personalize them and etch pictures on them.

Thursday, August 22, 2013

I surrender

UGH, I give up. I just cannot get the pattern correct for Two Hearts as One by Martha Ess. I'm on row two and can't get the rings to look right intertwined. I think that I have met my match this time.

I'm going to put it down for a while and do other projects. I will visit this pattern later and see if I can figure it out.

I do have to say that I love the interlocking center rings and may just do them and turn them into earrings.

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Beads, beads and more beads

Some friends and I went in together and did a bead order from Fire Mountain Gems. I spent a little bit of  money and got some really nice beads. Wendy, Mary Kay and I met on Monday for a great sort of the order. What a blast. We met at a Panera and had bead packages laying all over the place.

Well, apparently that wasn't enough for me. There is a bead store in Carlisle PA that is closing and last week I learned that they had everything marked down 60% off. So of course last Wednesday I took a ride up there and the store was closed. I thought "OK God, You are trying to tell me that I don't need any more beads"
So Shawn and I were talking and I told him about the store. We agreed that I wouldn't be able to rest if I didn't drive back up there and at least take a look.

So yesterday, I drove up there with my neice. Imagine my delight when we pulled up and the sign in the window said everything is 80% off. Woo Hoo. I went a little crazy. I couldn't help myself. She had a ton of Delica beads and I bought a ton of Delica beads. I picked up some crystals, some other beads and findings and I even treated myself to some 24K gold Delica's. 15 grams for $5.00.

Today I'm in bead overload. I now have to sort, seperate and store all of these beads.

So I'm going to call next Tuesday and see if she is going to mark her inventory down to 90% off since she's closing her doors for good at the end of this month. If so, I'm off to Carlisle PA again.

Sunday, August 18, 2013

quiet evening

So, Shawn and I decided to have a nice quiet evening. We are in the living room and the TV is on but low. A football game is playing. Calvin and Jessica are down in the family room watching a movie.

We need some quiet time at home. It's been a busy weekend. Shawn and I were out all day yesterday and came home to a wonderful steak dinner that Calvin made. Amazing food. Nicholas came over after work and hung out for a while. I just love my nephew so much. He's an amazing guy. He says the funniest things. If you ever get the chance to watch a football game with him, it's a must. He doesn't like football, but commentates on all the hits. It's hard to describe. He says things like "he forgot to eat his wheaties this morning". His delivery is awesome.

Jessica's sister Rebecca came over for dinner also. It was nice to have her here. She's such a sweetheart. Usually she comes over, eats and leaves. Yesterday she hung out most of the evening. It was nice to spend some time with her. Pray only good things for her life.

So, I'm going to try and get a little tatting done. Tomorrow is Monday and I'm meeting up with some friends to sort out an order we made to Fire Mountain Gems. Good stuff.

Well, TTFN

Thursday, August 15, 2013

New Hand Dyed Thread posted in my Etsy store

PHEW, I finally got the thread all photographed and posted in my Etsy store.

I really love the dyeing process and creating combinations that you normally don't see. I really like the way the hot pink and grey came out. One of my favorites.

I tried to get some Christmas colors and Hanukkah colors but don't know if I was successful. I did get some fall colors done and some really interesting blues and verigated threads.

I'm exhausted. It's after 2am and I'm finally going to bed.

Good night world.

Monday, August 12, 2013

Tatting, Tatting, Tatting

UGH, I have no time to do any tatting. You'd think that because I don't work, I would be able to have a ton of time for tatting but I can never seem to get any. Some is my fault for being on the computer so much, but then I have other things I need and want to do during the day.

I finally did finish the two individual hearts and will start the Two Hearts as One celtic pattern. I am going to make time for it tomorrow because I'm going to attend a tatting meeting in Carlisle PA with Holly M. and need to leave by 4is to get to her house in time. It's about a 90 mile ride up there. I want to have something done on it before the meeting.

I also received my autographed copy of Time for Tea, a book by Martha Ess. It's so lovely and I can't wait to start the celtic tea pot.

Jessica and Calvin are still here with us. They should be going to settlement on their new home on Sept 9th. We are happy for them. A name has also been agreed on for the new baby. Her name is going to be Makayla Marie Robinson. YEAH. I had a part in naming her. So excited to be her GodMother also. Mariyah is going to be a great big sister.

So life in the Braxton house goes on.

Monday, August 5, 2013

Time for tatting

I need to make time for tatting. I haven't been able to tat as much as I've wanted to in the past few weeks. It always seems like something stops me. I either spend too much time on the computer or I find something in the house that needs to be done.

I have every intention to sit in my chair and tat, then I open the computer and before I know it, 3 hours have passed. Or I pick up my shuttles and the phone rings, someone knocks on the door or Shawn comes home.

Sometimes I see people post on FaceBook what they have tatted that day and I think "I really wish I would have tatted that much today".  Where do people find the time?

I often wonder if other people think the same thing. Maybe I need to make a schedule and stick to it.

I also need to find time to crochet, knit, learn new lace techniques, cross stitch, bead, dye thread, make shuttles, and so much more.

I love my life, but I need more of it.

Saturday, August 3, 2013

Two hearts as one by Martha Ess

I've been working on the pattern - Two hearts as one my Martha Ess. I have tried it in the past and got totally confused by all of the directions to pass shuttles in and out of rings, don't close ring, etc..

So I decided to do the hearts one at a time and it finally clicked while working on the second heart. I'm so happy. I am going to finish the individual hearts to have them as reference and will work on the combined hearts as soon as I get done.

Here is the picture of Martha's heart.

Wednesday, July 31, 2013


So Calvin and Jessica are between houses and they are staying with us intil mid September. So I am blessed to get to see my Goddaughter every day. Mariyah is such a doll. Her face just lights up when she sees you. She is such a happy baby. Well, I can't really say she's a baby any more. She'll be 18 months old on August 8th.

After dinner tonight, she and I blew bubbles in the front yard and then I took her for a walk. It was a  nice and the evening air was such a fresh change to sitting in the house all day.

Olivia will be going back to Ohio in Friday. Well she's going to Pittsburgh to visit her brother for the weekend and then on Monday will travel back to Ohio for her Sophmore year in College.

I'm going to get some tatting done now. I'm working on a pattern by Martha Ess. It's Two Hearts as One. Two interlocking hearts done in a celtic pattern. It's 4 shuttles and you really have to move shuttles thru unclosed rings, stop rings in the middle, intertwine chains, PHEW. I'm doing each heart seperately first to have a reference when I tackle the real pattern.

Saturday, July 27, 2013

Update on tatting group in PA

I haven't had the time yet to post an update on my experience at the tatting group in Gettysburg, PA.

It was great. I met Holly at her home and followed her to the location. As we were walking in, I mentioned that I had attended the Finger Lakes Tatting Conference. Well, Holly had been there also and informed me that two other ladies from the tatting group had been there also. I immediately relaxed. Funny that I really didn't know them nor did I initially remember meeting them, but my anxiety deminished because I had encountered them before. My daughter came with me, so that made me feel better as well.

Well, we have so much in common. I can't wait to go back next month. Unfortunately Olivia won't be able to go with me because she will be going back to Ohio on Friday. It's a long drive just to meet with other tatters some would say, but not too far for me. I'm so happy that I can meet with other tatters and feel comfortable. It looks like I am going to have 3 tatting groups now. My group here in Silver Spring, the one in Gettysburg and there is one in Carlisle as well that Holly wants me to go to.

We didn't do much tatting at the group, more chatting than anything else. There was another lady, Deb who was attending for the first time as well. Between the 6 of us, we have most every fiber market covered by our talents and obessions.

This is exactly what I need in my life. I am so thankful that my husband cares so much about me that he is OK with me going to these groups.

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

tatting group

I love Facebook because it allows me to meet and find tatters and crafters from all over the world.
A couple days ago, I hooked up with a fellow tatter from just over the boarder of Maryland in PA. Her name is Holly and she belongs to a few tatting groups. One of them meets in Gettysburg on the 4th Thursday of each month. Well, it just so happens that tomorrow is the 4th Thursday of the month and I am going to ride up and attend the meeting. I am meeting Holly at her home and then going to the meeting from there. This is a HUGE step for me since I usually don't go anywhere with anyone that I don't know. That social anxiety disorder thing is really a hinderance to those of us who suffer from it. If you know me well enough, you know how big this is. Usually I would talk Olivia or Shawn into coming with me, but not this time. I am a little anxious, but these folks are tatters so they have to be great people. Besides, if I get too anxious, I can just leave.
I will let you know how it goes.

Friday, July 19, 2013

Tatted earrings I designed

Here is a picture of the earrings I designed for my Tat-It earring challenge. Please leave a comment and let me know what you think.

I love the picots. They look so frilly, but are so light and easy to wear.

A short snippet from my book

I am sharing a few words from the book that I am writing about my experience with domestic violence.
The names have been changed, for the most part, to protect myself from persecution. The events are as accurate as I can remember them.

Fear is a powerful thing. It makes you do things that your common sense and conscious mind know are wrong. I found myself lying to everyone – my co-workers, my friends and my family. You find yourself rationalizing things to yourself that would seem nuts to other people. “If I am just nicer or quieter or more prompt, then he won’t hit me or rape me or I will get a little bit of affection.”

I was made to feel so low about myself and brainwashed to believe that he was the only person who would ever love me. I had become so obsessed with him that I followed him when he wasn’t with me. One day in particular stands out to me. I have fought with him about something or another. We were still living in Germany and in the barracks. He went down to see his friend (name withheld) who lived on the first floor. I went down and climbed into the friend's window. HE got up and grabbed me by the throat and pinned me to the door. He lifted me off of my feet and told me he would kill me. That was the first time he really was abusive. It was also the first time he tried to kill me.
Please let me know what you think by commenting below. I am open to all feedback.

Monday, July 15, 2013

snippets of my book about domestic violence

So many people have been asking me to let them read the parts of my book that are finished or saying that they can't wait for me to finish the book, that I have decided to post snippets of the book here on my blog. I am going to create another tab here on my blog so I can post little snippets of the book.

If you read any parts, please post a comment and let me know what  you think. It has been a struggle to write the book lately and any inspiration will be helpful.

First tidbit is coming soon...stay tuned

Thursday, July 4, 2013

Happy 4th

Independence Day is here. Grandma Dexter turns 99 today.
Jessica turns 25 today.
Shawn has to work.
I'm just going to clean and tat all day.
Happy Independence Day.

Sunday, June 30, 2013

Etsy shop coupons

I just added a coupon to my Etsy shop for first time customers. It's for 15% off the first order and expires on August 31st. The code is NECSTDSCT.

I also added a coupon for free shipping being sent to customer who place an order which also expires on August 31st for orders of at least $20.

I like this option. I hope it brings some more business to my store.

Saturday, June 29, 2013

Busy week.

It has been such a busy week. It started out on Monday with our cat having to go to the vet on an emergency basis because he could not urinate. When we go to the vet's office, they rushed him back to get checked. I waited about 20 mins and was pulled into an exam room and advised that he had a bladder issue. He had to be sedated and a cathater inserted to empty his full bladder. I was told that most cats become septic within 12 hours of their bladder issue and die. He hadn't urinted in almost 48 hours. They had to keep him. He was put in the hospital for 4 days.

On Tuesday, I traveled to Ohio to attend the funeral of our Aunt Joyce. I drove 6 hours and got to our Mom's house (really she's my mother in law but we don't like the 'inlaw' thing). As soon as I got to Ohio, I went with my great neice to her awards ceremony for t-ball. Then back to mom's where we stayed up past midnight talking.

Wednesday found me running errands all day for family members and spending the day with my great neice (she's 7). Since they live in a really small town and the closest mall is 45 miles away, I went on another road trip to the mall to get some things needed. Again with my 7 year old neice.

Thursday was the funeral. It was emotionally draining. A 2 hour viewing followed by the service, gravesite service, meal after the service, then back to the house to visit with family until all hours of the night. A very very long day.

Meanwhile in Maryland, our cat was released from the hospital and sent home in the evening. I had called the vet hospital every day, twice a day, checking on the cat.

Friday was another travel day. I hit the road at about 9:15 am for my drive back to Maryland. I got home at about 3:45. Shawn got home a few minutes after me. We sat down and talked about my trip. I noticed that the cat was acting funny again. I checked his litter boxes and noticed that they were all (we have 3 for 1 cat) clean and not been used. No one had checked to make sure he was able to urinate. I called the vet back and was told to bring him right back in. OK, so I had just driven 6 1/2 hours, and the vet is 45-60 mins away in rush hour traffic. I jumped back in the car, mad as all get out, and rushed him back to the vet. I was not mad at him, but at a lack of follow through from my daughter. Shawn came with me back to the vet's office. We arrived about 6 pm and the cat was wisked away back to be examined again. The vet came out several times to update us on his progress. Finally about 8:30 (the vet's office closes at 7) we were told that he would be able to come home with us but would need to be back in the office at 8:30 am for emergency surgery to open his urinary tract. The best way to describe this operation is to imagine a human gender reassignment surgery. Sounds kind of crazy, hua? So we headed back home for the night.

Today, Saturday, I got up and rushed the cat back to the vet - 30 mins in  no traffic and dropped him off for his surgery. We had committed to helping friends from church move today, so off I went to meet Shawn at their home to help with the move. We packed one large U-Haul truck and got it to the new house and unpacked. By this time it was only 11:00. We moved fast. There were only a few items left at the old house and about 15 movers so we left and came home for a few minutes. We then went to a book reading and signing for 3 local authors. What a treat. Shawn wanted me to go to encourage me to get my book finished. It was so inspiring. We got to ask questions and talk to each author. I bought 4 copies of one author's book, 2 of another and a series of 3 from the third. We also found "Armor Of God" t-shirts with a man riding a motorcycle. It was great because our CMA chapter is called Armour Of God, with Ephesians 6:10-20 being our base verses. I had to get one for each of us, of course. So during the book reading, I got a call from the vet telling us to pick the cat up at 4pm. The book signing was over at 3. We rushed to grab a bite to eat and get back to the vet's office - another 30 minute drive. We arrived and sat and waited for about 30 mins. At 4:30 we were ushered into an exam room where we sat for another 15 minutes. Finally I asked someone what was going on. I paid the vet bill and the cat was brought to us - FINALLY. We were given instructions and got to take the cat home. We got home and had our nephew waiting to come in and visit. A very nice suprise. He stayed for a while and then he went out and mowed our grass. He's such a good guy. So he went home to mow his grass (he always borrows our mower and I get my grass mowed as payment). He'll be back soon to visit again.

So this has been my week. I am exhausted.

Sunday, June 23, 2013

David Reed Smith shuttles have arrived

I am so excited that my two David Reed Smith shuttles arrived Saturday. He only mailed them on Friday. I guess that's one benefit of living in the same state as him. They are just lovely to hold. I can't wait to load them up and get busy making something with them. I have so many projects going right now, I don't know when they will be loaded. David sent me the below picture as a tease. Good thing I got them so quickly, because I was drooling all over myself. My friend Leeanne always uses his shuttles and I have wanted to buy some for about 13 years but never got around to it until recently. I love that he makes them to order.

I am in the middle of making butterflies for the Holocost Museum in Houston. I have 3 finished and in the middle of #4. Then I want to make turtle earrings for my sister who I will see next week when I travel to Ohio for the funeral of my aunt. I also want to make some cross earrings, some peacock earrings, organize my shuttles, finish photographing my shuttles and so on and so on and so on.

Monday, June 17, 2013

Selling shuttles

I posted pictures of Shawn's shuttles on my Etsy shop and then asked my online tatting group to give me their feedback and in the past 3 days we have sold 4 and 2 more have been spoken for.

I never would have thought that they would sell so quickly. I think part of the reason is because his design is so different and unique. Shawn is so talented and has such a creative mind. I live to watch him when he does something different with a shuttle. His eyes light up like a little kid at Christmas.

On another note, I'm going to photograph and organize my shuttle collection tomorrow. It has grown considerably in the past few weeks and I really need to get it in order. I have a display box with some of my shuttles mounted. I should take a picture of them as well. Knowing me, I'll start a spreadsheet and catalogue them as well.

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Walnut shuttle made by my husband

Shawn Braxton has done it again. He made one of  his original shuttles he has named the Arrow Head in Walnut. I think it is gorgeous. Please tell me what you think. This one is treated with non toxic Linseed oil. He's not sure if he wants to shellac it our not. I am excited that we are finishing up the paperwork for the design patent and have already gotten the copywrite taken care of for the design. You can purchase these at my Etsy store


Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Keep me off eBay please.

Keep me off eBay please. I've been shopping and keep checking eBay for new posts. I've won several auctions recently by sniping in and getting the highest bid. I know that I am ticking off some people, but it's been done to me many times. I guess she who has the biggest credit card limit wins, right? No really, I am very specific in my shuttle search. I am trying to build up my collection and looking for some unique and rare shuttles. There is one on there now that I would LOVE to have, but the auction is already up to $129.00 and it still has 3 days to go. For one shuttle. The most I have spend is $135 for 20 and one of them is an Aero England. I jsut won that auction. Here are pix of the shuttles I have purchased in the past 3 days OMG. It's a lot.

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Kitty and puppy got ahold of my HDT

Yesterday my daughter found a big ball of thread that was a mess. Either the kitty, the puppy or dare I say BOTH got ahold of one of my skeins of hand dyed thread and had a grand time pulling it into a huge mess.

It took me the better part of the entire day to get it untangled. I had a real fun time. Sometimes frustrating, but I did it. I was intending to sell this beautiful skein of thread, but now I'll just keep it for myself. Some of it will be used for my daisy tablecloth. I'll make some bookmarks or earrings with the rest.

Sunday, June 9, 2013

Shawn's shuttles and hand dyed thread

Well, my hubby has done it again. He is just amazing. He improved on his shuttle. He has made it easier to load and it will now hold more thread. I will be putting some up for sale on my Etsy shop tomorrow. I am so excited.

I have also sold 5 of my shuttles. It's slow selling, but I think they sell better when people see them in person. Pictures just don't do them justice and you really have to hold and feel them to appreciate the workmanship.

I also dyed some thread today so I am going to post those on my Etsy shop tomorrow as well. I dyed some duplicates this time so I have more of the same colorways to offer. I like my thread to be unique and usually don't dye more than one skein of the same color.
These are the ones I will be posting on my Etsy store

These ones I am going to keep

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

doily is giving me the blues

I have been working on this doily pattern by Linda Davies called Delicacy Doily. It has been giving me the blues. I got to row 10 and it ruffled so much that I had to reach out to Linda to get her advice on correcting it. I cut out 4 rows of tatting and then decided to just start over. I think I may have figured out the solution to my ruffle problem.

When I'm done, I will email Linda and let her know if it worked or not. She will add my adjustments to her pattern as well.

I really want to get this doily done correctly. I want to give it to Naina for a wedding gift. I know that she and my son are not yet engaged, but it will happen eventually and I want some nice handmade gifts ready for her.

So back to my doily. Pix will follow soon.

Friday, May 31, 2013

May is gone already

I can't believe that the month of May is gone already. So much has happened this month, but not much at all depending on which way you think about it. Olivia finished her first year of college. She's sitting at a 3.4 GPA. She came home from Ohio for the summer.

Shawn and I went to a CMA rally in Western Maryland where we met a great young couple who needed prayer. We prayed with them and can see the immediate results of that prayer. We now have more people in our circle.

Olivia and I started attending a stitching group and love the ladies we stitch with.

Zura is more than 3 months old already and getting so big. I took her to the vet the other day and she's already 21.5 lbs.

Nathaniel drove to Philly and asked Naina's parents for thier blessing to marry Naina. He's now ring shopping. Naina also started a new job with a large law firm in Pittsburgh and she and Nate got an apartment in downtown Pittsburgh together.

Tommy is graduating today. I was in the delivery room when he was born and now he's graduating. I can't believe my nephew is 18 and out of school.

Nicholas started working at a Harley Davidson dealership with a full time job. He's learning so much about motorcycles and will get his license soon.

Our CMA chapter is getting more and more opportunities to serve. We were asked to assist a local motorcycle shop with thier 1 year anniversary celebration tomorrow. We will be cooking on the grill and anything else they need done.

I guess looking at this list, there really was a lot going on.

Well, May, I will see you next year. Hello June - What do you have in store for my family?