Saturday, December 19, 2015

Pre-Christmas: My Christmas Quilts

The Christmas decorations are not complete until Christmas quilts are up. This year there were little late getting up because I wasn't feeling well and we were very busy with the Nutcracker. Most of the quilts were up by the fifth or sixth of December and the last few small ones were up by the 12th.

Here is a link to another blog post called How Many Christmas Quilts Do You Have? This doesn't include all my quilts so I will add those pictures to this post.
I am sure you have seen these quilts one time or another on my blog over the years. I felt like sharing them again.

 Machine appliqued Angel.

My Believe in Santa, I gave this away one year, also machined appliqued. 

 My Christmas Charm, machine appliqued.

My Dear Jane Swap Christmas Quilt. I forget how many blocks I made for the swap.  I made a couple of extra to make the layout I wanted.  This quilt was in the AQG show and the judges liked how I did my corners, that it followed the line layout.  They thought it needed more quilting but I didn't agree.  My first attempt at free motion feathers. They are definitely free motion.

I made two of these also, I gave one to my big daughter and put Halloween fabric on the back.  She loves Halloween.  When we were at her home for Thanksgiving she proudly showed me she has the quilt on the wall with the Halloween side out.  I told her to turn it around for Christmas so she can use it all year long. 

This was a kit I purchased in Colorado one year when I was there with my job.  I loved the fabrics.  He is on the same hanger as the Santa quilt and he is straight I just hold the camera crocked.

This is a winter quilt and I leave it up until February, the others come down.  It was also a class sample for 9 Patch Pizzazz. 

And last but not least is my Stick Santa made this year. I finally brought him home from the quilt shop.  He was a class sample but no one took the class, but he did sell patterns. 

I hoped you enjoyed the Christmas Quilt show.  

Have a Merry Christmas and please remember the real reason we celebrate the season. 

I guess I have been because I have been tearing up a lot when I hear Holy Christmas songs and see some of the videos made by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. 

Friday, December 18, 2015

My Spanish Doll

Here is my beautiful little Spanish Doll, in the professional photo taken for her role in The Nutcracker Ballet produced by Ballet Etudes.  The photo was professionally taken by Stefani Bullard

Doesn't she just looked beautiful in that costume which 
is just perfect for her.

This was a very exciting time for both of us as she participated in the Nutcracker. I was able to chaperone for four different opportunities. I was there twice for dress rehearsal and twice for  shows. It was interesting to see how things work backstage. One of the frustrating things was there is a lot of hurry up and wait as the chaperone. The cast and the chaperones show up two hours before showtime. I am not sure why other than they want to know that everybody's there and was enough time to get ready. The kids seem to deal with this much better than I did. They all brought games or toys to entertain themselves with. I had things to do also but it was hard to concentrate on reading or journal writing while watching the kids. All the kids were really well behaved and very patient backstage. It was fun to watch them especially one night during dress rehearsal. The little kids are divided into two cast groups and the one cast group was watching the other cast group and they were saying they're getting onto late they miss their cue. It was really cute to watch them.

As a chaperone for the little kids I also had the job of 
applying their makeup which was simple and fun. The girls really liked my eyelashes that I made for them. The lips were a little harder to do. One of the fun techniques I learned was how 
to apply glitter on their faces.

Little Bit really enjoyed having me as a chaperone I was glad I could help. But it is very time-consuming. Little Bit is ready to do it again next year and I'm glad there is almost a year until we start again. At the last show I was backstage waiting for the little dolls to come off stage, when one of the professional male dances came off the stage and thanked myself and the other volunteer for being there and for volunteering. He said we couldn't do this without your help. It really made me feel good to have that recognition and I appreciated him taking the time to say that. I felt there was a real spirit of cooperation with everything I saw during rehearsals as well as production.

While we were waiting to leave during intermission of the last show the female Spanish dancer came offstage. Little Bit saw her and told me that one day she wants to dance that part. I hope her dream comes true. I sent an e-mail to Stefani the photographer asking if I could use her picture of the big Spanish dancer to put it her on my blog but until that time you can go to her link above and see the Spanish dancer on her website with a lovely photo.

Right now little bits next goal is to be a baby mouse next year, 
I hope she makes it.

Here is another Christmas video for you to enjoy!

Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Pre-Christmas: The Little Ones' Decorations

This year the girls asked if they could spend their own money to decorate their rooms.  So we did a run to Hobby Lobby and here are the end results.

Bigger Bit has a double bed and shares her room with our food storage rack with the #10 cans on it.  So her dresser is in the closet.  Luckily she isn't a high maintenance gal and she doesn't have a closet full of cloths. Her drawers are also always in order. 
So she decorated the top of her dresser borrowed some Christmas napkins from me and this is the end result.  

We also made a garland of paper tree lights that I found on Pinterest.  This link will take you to the original site. She made her garland in the traditional Christmas colors. 

This is Little Bit's Tree, she was so excited to find a tiara ornament. She told me one day that I don't call her princess enough.  When my dad called me princess it was not a compliment.  So I have been using it more.  This morning I said, "Time to get up Princess, even a Princess has to get up and go to school."

Here are Little Bit's garland of Paper Bulbs.  She used less traditional colors. 

We are enjoying the season.  One of the things the girls look forward to is the hanging of the mistletoe.  We sure get a lot more hugs and kisses when it is hanging up.  The other is hanging the ornament each day on the Advent Quilt and counting how many days are left until Christmas. 

I have one with a Nativity scene I want to make. 
Maybe it will get done in 2016.

Just so we don't forget the real meaning of Christmas.

Tuesday, December 8, 2015

Pre-Christmas the Tree

The girls were a tremendous help this year. I set up the tree, Bigger Bit helped spread all the branches.  I put on the lights and Bigger Bit helped.  Both of them did all the ornaments. I mean all the ornaments.  Plus all the Nativity scenes and I have a few.  The Nativity scenes are arranged a little different but I left them that way.  She left out my pretty white paper one but that is OK. I took me a while to figure out why there was so much more room than usual. It is all good. 

See what a good job they did! Bigger Bit really likes my bubble candles. I found some replacement ones I should go put them on the tree to see if they bubble better, than my old ones. 

I purchased an ornament for each of them from the Nutcracker Boutique so they would have a memory of the ballet. They placed them together.  Here is Little Bit pointing to them. 

Here is the close up of the ornaments.  Do I have to tell who which child got which ornament?

Here we all are sitting and enjoying the tree when it was done. 

It was fun to watch Little Bit dancing with my Nutcracker just like Claire does in the Ballet.  I didn't get a picture of her. 
Have a wonderful time preparing for Christmas and think of the blessing of our Savior. 

Sunday, December 6, 2015

Pre Christmas Activities - Nutcracker Ballet

Well there has been flurry of activity over here getting ready for Christmas.  

In September Little Bit auditioned for a part in the Nutcracker.  This production is done by Ballet Etudes, which is a local school of dance and they do a marvelous job.  She is a doll in the fight scene.  A very busy scene.  She is all cute in her Spanish dress. 

This was taken back stage after a show one evening.  I am helping with chaperoning the kids backstage.  It has been an interesting experience for me to see how things work backstage. The costumes are amazing. I don't think she is on stage for more than 15 minutes and look at this cute the costume.  The auditions are open to students from any school of dance.  Which gives her a great opportunity.  I think about 150 kids auditioned. 
Rehearsals started in September and the show runs for three weekends starting Thanksgiving weekend.  She will dance in 6 of the 12 shows. I signed up to chaperon for 5 and missed one because I am sick.  Hopefully I won't miss my last two. 
The Young Women group (The 12 to 17 year old) from church went to see the Nutcracker as a group, since two older girls are also dancing from our Ward. One of the leaders and some of the girls meet Little Bit at the back stage door and presented her with this giant Snickerdoodle cookie. 

Family involvement is big for this annual production, this is year 29. Mr. B. helped with taking down the set at Chandler Center of the Arts and setting it up at Mesa Arts Center. 

We saw the complete Ballet yesterday as a family. It was beautiful and it was fun to see Little Bits excitement and awe at the scenery. Minus Bigger Bit because she went with the Young Women.

Little Bit, Mary and Mr. B.

With White Tutu

This has been a fun adventure but very time consuming. She has been missing some of her time she spends with friends.  But she did tell me yesterday she wants to do this next year.

Well enjoy your holiday preparations and remember the real reason we celebrate. 

Monday, November 16, 2015

Three Years Ago Today

Three years ago we were asked to take these two darling girls into our home. We thought it would be for a short time but it turned out to be forever. 

These first pictures are from my retirement dinner.  I left work at 130 PM and we had them by 330 PM.  My good friends had a dinner planned for me and we took the  girls with us. This is Little Bit. 

This is Bigger Bit.  We went to the 
Spaghetti Factory and we took the Light Rail to the restaurant. 

Here I am at my retirement dinner with my lovely Retired pin. I went right from work to being a Stay At Home Mom. Not what I had planned.  Heaven Father had a different plan, I am so glad I accepted it. The day before this dinner our former sister in law called me on my cell and left me a message, asking me to take her grand-babies. They had been with her best friend for three weeks but her friend couldn't care for them any longer. So I called Mr. B and asked if he had spoken to Nancy and he had.  We walked about what to do.  I had that feeling in my heart, deep down, when you know this is a cross road in your life. I knew I needed to do this and it was important and I had better not pass up important.  

This is Little Bit in the new dress I purchased for her so she could have a dress for Sunday. I need to take a picture in it now, to see how short it is on her

This is Bigger Bit in her new Sunday dress.  It was long her then I bet it will be just right now.  

 This is a close up of Bigger Bit now.  She is so lovely and helpful.  She is a born organized person and I love to watch her just get things done.  The opposite of me and Little Bit. 
 She always wants to stand on her toes to be as tall as I am. 

Here is Little Bit hasn't she grown?!?!?!?  She is catching up with her sister.  She is very creative and not into details. 
 These girls are as opposite as day and night. The night they moved in Little Bit took my face in her hand and told me I was just perfect.  Just melted my heart.  She still does and she can drive me crazy just as fast.
It sure hasn't been easy, I have never doubted this was the right thing to do.  It isn't easy that is for sure.  I sure gets lots of hugs and kisses and that helps make it worth while. 
They accuse me of getting cranky sometimes at bedtime when they won't settle down.  I remind them, "When you get cranky putting your kids down, and you are twenty something or thirty something, just remember I was sixty something."

Here I am with Mr. B up at Snowbowl AZ. He is also a part of this endeavor. I think he feels left out a lot. 

Happy 3rd Anniversary to new kids and retirement!

Saturday, November 14, 2015

What I Have Left

The last meeting of the Get RR Done Club was Thursday October 8th.  I didn't go I just had too many things to do on my to do list.  But here is an update on my progress.  
I finished three projects and made progress on three.  I didn't finish all six, but that is OK.  
I finished the Stick Witch, Stick Santa and the machine quilting free motion sampler. 
I finished the Pink Princess top, which was suppose to be quilted and binding on.
I made one block on my Design and Sew Quilt, it was supposed to be quilted and binding on. 
I made one Dear Jane corner and constructed my four borders except for the blank spots. 
I bigger dreams than I had time for.
If I do this again I am going to make my projects smaller, or smaller parts. Like finish blocks.  
Life gets too hectic for me sometimes.

Below are the pictures of the Dear Jane blocks I still have to complete.  I had to put her away again for a short time.  I have class samples to start and finish.  

I can't get these to line up the way I want.  But you get the idea,

More items organized

Of course, when you are cleaning you find other things you want to organize. I had opened my box of pantographs and all the rubber bands I had rolled them up with had broken.  So I remembered how I had used empty toilet paper rolls to hold my wrapping paper on the tube.  Would it work for the pantos?

At first I just put them in the tube without cutting it but I could see which panto it was, so I decided to cut it and pull the name out. 

I now have them all in tubes now.  They are a little fatter than the ones in rubber bands but with the bands drying out and breaking they would expand any way. 

My other project was to pick out the fabric for the last four triangles I have to make for my Dear Jane quilt and the one corner.

This one I have already started working on.  

The one below I couldn't decide if I like the beige or the green. 
So I saved both fabrics. 

As I look at the picture now I am leaning towards the green. 

I love these colors together in the one below.  

No dull civil war fabrics for my Dear Jane.