Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Starbright Cottage

starbright cottage

Yes, Liberty Hill aka Carolyn has once again dipped into her paints and the result is Starbright Cottage.  The cottage has a removable roof and stitching necessities can be stored inside. 

Oh AppleJack you can add this is to my Christmas list, it will look wonderful sitting under our Christmas tree.

Monday, November 24, 2014

Signature Quilt

Quilt history reports that signature or memory quilts were very popular with Victorian quilters in the mid 1800's.  In the USA, since the days of families moving west as pioneers, signature quilts have been given as gifts by families and groups of friends for special occasions:  a leave taking, a birthday, an anniversary, a new baby, a retirement, or other special occasion.

There are blocks that are especially useful for signing with blank areas in the block.  Permanent pens are used or sometimes embroidery for the signature.  Ironing freezer paper on the back of the fabric makes it easier to sign the fabric and keep it from shifting.

I made this signature quilt a few years ago.  Since I have been learning about Grandmother Bessie's family I thought I would incorporate the women in Grandmother Bessie's life.

Potential Names:

Maria Eva Stocker
Juliana Stentz
Barbara Ann Emert
Hannah Lindsey
Sarah D Evans
Laura Jane Noland
Kittie D Shults, sister
Maggie E Shults
Bessie Ann Shults
Bonnie Shults
Allie Belle Shults
Juanita McFall
Helen McFall
Jackie Ruth McFall
Ersabelle Price
Clara Ann Price
Loris Jane Price
Shirley Price
Margaret Messamore
Patricia Jane Price
Betty Price
Linda Gail Price
Sarah Miranda Plemons
Mattie Atchley
Maggie Rector
Birdie Noland
Isabell Cardwell
Lillie Rayfield
Sallie Branam
Nora Roberts
Alice Shields
Sarah Kerley
Angie Ensor
Rebeccca Scandlyn
Sarah Price
Ellen Price
Carrington Amos
Margaret Ferguson
Anna Dee Noland
Fannie Noland
Belle Noland
Sophie Margaretta

Mrs Tilley
Mrs Brock
Mrs Jefferson
Mrs Kyle
Mrs Stamper

Mildred Denton
Dorothy Lowe
Billie Ann Gage

There are Grandmothers, Mothers, Sisters, Sister-in-laws, Grandchildren, neighbors and cherished friends.  Women who were all a part of Grandmothers life.

Saturday, November 22, 2014

In the Spring there is a flower. . .

As Buffalo, New York digs out from 7' (seven feet) of snow and prepares for rain and flooding, I have been preparing Next Year, the garden for spring 2015.

There have been leaves to rake.

Spirea which was long past due on a good hard pruning.

Our vegetable garden is due for a double dig and addition of compost.

Perennials to deadhead.

and bulbs to be planted.

One way I try to work off some of the Thanksgiving calories is fall gardening.  I'm sure I consume many more calories than I burn.  One of my favorite gardening activities is planting spring bulbs.  Grandmother Bessie would say "they won't bloom in the package."  I sure hope my gardening legs hold out for all the bulbs I have purchased which need to be planted.

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Carmel Crispix Mix

6 cups Crispix cereal
4 cups pretzels (checkerboard style or heart shaped)
2 cups mixed nuts
1 stick of butter
1/2 cup brown sugar
4 tablespoons Karo syrup

Mix cereal, pretzels and nuts together

Place butter, brown sugar and Karo syrup in a microwave bowl or use a sauce pan on the stove.  Heat and bring to a boil for one (1) minute.

Pour over the dry mix and stir to coat evenly.  (Use two 9 x 13 pans)

Bake at 250 for 20 minutes (stir once)

Let cool and break apart

Eat up!  Yum Yum

AppleJack is my official taster and he gives this recipe a thumbs up.  It is super easy to make and delicious. 

Sunday, November 16, 2014

Homespun Gathering Reunion

When my favorite needlework store and my favorite shop in the whole wide world closed in 2005, the girls could just not accept not gathering with each other as they had done for years. 

 So. . . they put their heads together and came up with the idea of having a reunion.  Several times a year (between four and five) the girls gather together and do all the fun things they did at Homespun. 

The public library has a large meeting room with a kitchen and space can be reserved. 

                       There is always an air of excitement.

 The room is often filled with ooohhh's and aahh's and squeals as a beautifully finished piece of needlework, or a quilt, a hooked rug or a needle punch is shared.

 Ideas abound with talk of designs and linen choices and fiber colors are discussed.  I am always amazed at the creativity and skill in the finished projects.

For me, the Gathering is so much more.  This group of women has known each other for years and have shared the good and not so good of their lives:  marriages/divorces, births/deaths, loss of a job and new jobs, travels, antics of their four legged fur children and embarrassing moments.

 Delicious food and recipe sharing abounds.   The room is filled with laughter sometimes tears, hugs and words of encouragement.  AppleJack says it's the best therapy.  The group is well traveled and knowledgeable of current and world events but find discussing retreats, and upcoming markets and designs much more productive.

               Gathering Reunions--let the good times roll! 

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Grandmother/Mother's Cornbread Dressing

4 cups cornbread
3 cups lightly toasted bread
1 cup chopped celery
1/2 -1 chopped onion
1 stick butter
1-2 teaspoons sage or poultry seasoning
1/2 teaspoon Black Pepper
2 cups broth
Saute onion and celery in butter until onions are clear
Coarsely crumble cornbread and cube bread
Combine all ingredients
Cook in 350 degree oven until lightly browned
Grandmother and Mother prepared this recipe for their family for many years.  It was always a hit.

When Mother was sharing this recipe with me she said, "it's a very easy recipe to double or triple."  Coming from a large family and a farm family, Mother and Grandmother were accustomed to cooking for large numbers of people.  When the family gathered together, the numbers were in the high twenties or thirties. 

During harvest times (cutting hay or tobacco, picking corn) or when we were working cattle, Mother and Grandmother prepared meals for the farm hands (laborers).  The farm hands consisted of six to eight men with voracious appetites.  Food was consumed by the gallons.  In order to prepare enough food, Mother and Grandmother would begin cooking early in the morning as soon as the men left to work.  The men ate huge portions and often asked for seconds.  Dad never had difficulty finding willing workers for the farm.  The workers would often say:  Yes, I'll come and work for you because I know I am going to be fed well."  This recipe has stood the test of time and gained the approved of hard working men.

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Easy Stitching

The Goode Huswife
Currants Coxcomb and Rose
36 ct WDW Havana Linen (I think)
NPI silks

The polar vortex has made its way south.  Sunday afternoon I raked leaves in the sunshine with temps nearing the seventies, the high today is forecast near forty with temps dropping into the twenties tonight.  It is times like this when Miss Callie Mae and I find our warm blanket and snuggle comfortably into the stitch chair for some mindless television and stitching.

Currants, Coxcomb and Rose is an oldie but goodie from The Goode Huswife (the chart is marked 2001).  The model was stitched with Birds of a Feather Wren.  Two of my favorite things:  a Goode Huswife design and Birds of a Feather linen.

The five remaining spaces in the design will be filled with a fan/feather design.  I call these designs easy stitching or mindless stitching--a repetitive design using the same colors of fibers.  I haven't decided how to finish--a pincushion, a box top, a huswife? 


Monday, November 10, 2014

Alphabetically, numerically, color family

The last couple of times I have been together with the stitching girls there has been discussion about fiber organization.  From the looks of this photo, my fibers are looking for some organization.

How do you sort/file your fibers:   alphabetically, numerically or by color family?  Just like filing my charts and stash, I file using all three methods.

For my Needlepoint Silks and Au ver a soie, I file numerically using Floss Away bags, grouping or dividing them together by number in hopes they will be easier to locate.  (I have wasted an inordinate amount of time searching for fibers)

The Gentle Arts, Weeks, and Cresent Colors are filed alphabetically.  One of the stitch girls (who happens to be a designer) organizes hers by color families.  WOW!  The fibers look beautiful organized this way, but for a stitcher (me) this system did not work because it took me forever to locate the called for color in a design.

When I am choosing/pulling fibers for a design, I often select either lighter or darker values of a color--sometimes because I like the lighter/darker color better and sometimes because I do not have the specific color but a lighter or darker version and sometimes the color gets lost on the linen.  Confused?

The Old Mercantile's photo.

My last visit to The Old Mercantile, I ordered a cabinet which will house my fibers.  Shh don't tell AppleJack but this is his Christmas present to me, I took the liberty of helping him with his shopping. 

One of my goals for 2015 is fiber maintenance.  ALL my fibers are going to be stored in the cabinet--no more kitting, no more sitting aside fibers for projects.  Am hoping this organization will result in more stitch time and  much less frantically searching swearing I have that fiber time.

Sunday, November 9, 2014

Thanksving Planning

Sad to say, Thanksgiving is sometimes referred to as the over looked holiday or the holiday between Halloween and Christmas.  At our house, Thanksgiving is an important holiday because we have many things which we are thankful for. 

Thanksgiving Menu
Spiral cut ham
Mother's cornbread dressing
Anne's Sweet Potatoes
Farmer's Market Green Beans
Pineapple-Carrot-Cheese Salad
Farm fresh deviled eggs
Pumpkin Roll
Red Zinger Tea

AppleJack, grocery shopper extraordinaire, is making his shopping list.

Grandmother Bessie's Autumn Leaf Jewel Tea dishes are coming out of the cupboard and being prepped for the table setting.

For some fresh air and exercise and in anticipation of spring, bulbs will be planted.  Leaves to rake.

There is fabric to be cut and sewn for quilts:  fall colors for a tumbler quilt and blues and browns for a Lady of the Lake. 
No Black Friday shopping for us (we avoid the malls like the plague) and walk in the woods is always peaceful.
Time permitting the beginning of Christmas decorations. 

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Did you vote?

women's suffrage historic marker in downtown Nashville

If you are a woman and you voted yesterday you can thank Harry Burns and his Mother.

Harry T. Burn

It was Harry, the Tennessee state representative  who cast the deciding vote giving women the right to vote.  (It took a little prodding from his Mother.)

Monday, November 3, 2014

Why Mecklenburg?

My secret is out--I love history and I love incorporating my family history into my needlework.  Some needle workers have Adam and Eve walls, I have a Grandmother Bessie wall. 

Some people count sheep at night, I plan needlework projects.  As I am working on one needlework project, I am thinking/planning the next project.  Why Mecklenburg?  Mecklenburg 1775, the sampler was designed by Cynthia Bradford, Little by Little. The design was released several years ago, I'm not sure of the year.  Here is why I chose Mecklenburg as my next (Colonial Gatherings) in between project.

Dr. Johan Martin Shultz is my Great-Great-Great-Great-Great Grandfather.  (If he didn't have such a wonderful story, I would nickname him Five G for short.)

Johan Martin Shultz was born in Lancaster County, PA in 1740.  He was the son of Johan Velten (Valentine) Shultz and Maria Eva Stocker.  Valentine and Maria had come to the new world from Germany before the American Revolution and settled in Lancaster County, PA.

As a young man, Martin was apprenticed to a cordwainer.  A Cordwainer is a shoemaker of fine boots and shoes.  He uses finer leather and is considered more of a craftsman than a regular shoemaker or cobbler.  Cobblers repair shoes and use old leather; cordwainers use only new, finely tanned leathers.  The word is connected with word cordovan which today refers to a color and a vegetable tanned leather used only for the highest quality shoes. 

Apprenticeships usually lasted for seven years or until the apprentice became of age.  Martin completed his apprenticeship in 1721 when he was 21 years old.  Several important things happened that year:  Martin married Juliana Stenz and he agreed to become the guardian of Philip Bayer, Juliana's fifteen year old orphaned nephew.  By age twenty-one, Martin had a business, a wife an apprentice and a legal responsibility.  Martin and Juliana and their children made their home in York County, PA.  (Their eight children were born in PA only six of the eight children would survive to adulthood)

After 1760, the shoe trade was booming in New England, Virginia shipped her tanned leathers there.  Martin may have felt a falling off in trade or difficulty in obtaining good leather in PA or there could have been too much competition from New England bootmakers.  Whatever the reason, he began planning a move to  Carolina.  He consulted with a number of his neighbors and they agreed to accompany the Shultzes in their move to the wilderness.  Because of the move, Martin had to go to court and be relieved of his responsibility for Philip.  Rather than abandoning Philip, Martin made arrangements for Philip to be apprenticed to another cordwainer. 

By 1764 Martin and Juliana had made all their preparations for the journey and set out with their group of friends and neighbors for Carolina.  The group made their way to Mecklenburg County, NC  they settled in an area near Killian's Creek and Leeper's Creek or Lick Run which is now the eastern part of Lincoln County, North Carolina.

Martin was made a constable by the Court of Pleas and for the next few years witnessed a number of deeds for people in the area, many of whom had come from PA with him. By 1777, Martin was identified on the deeds he signed as Doctor Martin Shultz.  Apparently between the time he had moved from PA and 1777, he had taken training as a doctor in Mecklenburg.  It is unknown why Martin gave up his profession of cordwaining and took up medicine.  He probably had little if any source of fine leather in NC and the area needed doctors.  Some early historians say there were no doctors in the area.  If this is true, he was simply filling a need and may have trained himself. 

Feeling the itch to move again, the Shultz family moved to Washington County NC in 1778.  They arrived in the summer and settled near the Holston River. 
The Revolutionary War was well under way by this time.  Martin may have thought that moving further west might be a way of escaping the war.  It was not meant to be and he enlisted in the militia and served as surgeon under Colonel Shelby and Colonel Campbell.

Battle of Kings Mountain Marker Photo, Click for full size

The Battle of King's Mountain has two faces.  It was a decisive American victory and changed the tide of the war in the South.  The battle also had elements that were shameful and disgraceful.  It was a short battle lasting a little over an hour.  Every single British soldier was killed, wounded, or captured.  Some sources say there were no doctors at King's Mountain, other sources says the British had one doctor, Dr Uzal Johnson and the colonists had Dr. Martin Shultz.  There were no supplies: no medicine, no bandages, no splints.  Amputations were carried out with whiskey and brute force.  The British reported 225 killed, 163 wounded and 715 prisoner; the colonists reported 28 killed and 62 wounded. 

Dr. Shultz left with the other Overmountain Men and made his way back home.  The area continued to change--more settlers, changes in county names and the creation of a state--Tennessee.  Grandfather Martin died in the fall of 1787 he was 47 years old.  Grandmother Juliana outlived him by several years.  After his death, she moved from Sullivan County to Emert's Cove in Sevier County. 

Johan Martin Shultz married Juliana Stenz
Their son, Martin Shultz married Barbara Ann Emert
Their son, Frederick Jackson married Hannah Lindsey
Their son, Jesse Derrick married Sarah Evans
Their son, James Lawson married Laura Jane Noland
James Lawson and Laura had five daughters one of those daughters was Bessie Ann--my cherished Grandmother.

Note about the Mecklenburg sampler.  The sampler contains some Quaker motifs.  The Shultz family was not Quaker they were Lutheran.  Some of the information about the family came from the records in Christ Lutheran Church in York County Pennsylvania. 

Sunday, November 2, 2014

Colonial Gathering Coverlet Candle Mat

The Scarlett House
Coverlet Candle Mat
35 count Alabaster Linen from R & R Reproductions
Gentle Arts Sample Threads--Country Redwood, Harvest Basket and Wrought Iron

Yea, for me, I'm four for four of the Colonial Gatherings kits.  I promised myself (and AppleJack) I would keep up and complete the projects for a membership into the club.  A finished project and something to share with the stitch girls at the next gathering.  

Mecklenburg 1775, a sampler by Little by Little is my next in-between project.