Thursday, January 29, 2015

The blue and the gray

My name is Betty and I have a fabric addiction.  I love fabrics!  Civil War reproduction fabrics, Jo Morton fabrics, Primitive Gatherings fabrics, Fig Tree fabrics, wools, and flannels are some of my favorites.  Some women shop for shoes and purses I shop for fabric!  AppleJack learned long ago the one sure way to make me happy was to take me fabric shopping.

One of my favorite quilt magazines is Primitive Quilts.  Being a Prim girl this comes as no surprise.  The magazine contains instructions for more than just quilts--there is rug hooking, needle punch and wool appliqué. 

In the fall, I was searching through back issues of the magazine looking for the hexie project and I found another project which caught my eye. In the Summer 2013 issue of Primitive Quilts, Melissa Lussier, Cornbread and Beans Quilting Company has a quilt she calls Blue and Gray.  

Melissa used Barbara Brachman's Battle Hymn charm pack fabrics. Her finished quilt is 37 1/2 x 46. In addition to using the Battle Hymn charm pack I will also be using a charm pack by Judie Rothermel called Charleston.  The backing/sashing fabric is Jubilee by Barbara Brackman. 

Working with the fabrics in these charm packs is pure delight.   Beautiful fabrics with names (Battle Hymn and Charleston) representative  of the struggle between the north and the south.

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Court Houses

There is a special place in my heart for old court houses.  They have creaky, squeaky floors.  They sometimes smell musty.  The chairs and benches are hard and uncomfortable for sitting.  The stairs are steep.  The photos of important people in the county are creepy.

They also hold the stories about my family:  marriage records, land transactions, birth and death records.  Sadly many of the court houses in the South were burned during the Civil War.  State Archives also contain family stories with newspaper articles, census records and old photos.  

Old court houses, they have a wonderful history and are waiting for me to learn more about my family.

Monday, January 26, 2015

Cat Tricks

Miss Callie Mae Calico is a smart girl! 

Her latest favorite napping spot is my stitch chair.  While I am flattered she thinks the stitching chair is a great place to cut some zzzzzz's, it is challenging for both of us to sit in the same chair.

She carefully positions herself in the nearby cat condo and when she sees me leave the stitch chair, she makes a mad dash for the chair and carefully positions herself for a long winters nap.

And yes, if I suggest she share or heaven forbid move, she immediately gives me the look.

So, I move to a straight chair and use the less desirable light.  Oh the life of a house cat.

Sunday, January 25, 2015

Tombstone Angel

After all my obsessing about the green wool, it was so worth it.  I have drooled looked at the Tombstone Angel on Pinterest for the longest time.  When I finally began pulling wools for the rug, the green wool was no where to be found.  I searched high and low and no green wool.  Franklin has a new shop called Bittersweet Primitives and they carry a selection of wools for hooked rugs.  The owner of the shop is a (rug) hooker and is planning to offer classes.  There was a nice selection of green wools and I purchased several for the tombstone angel.  Of course, Murphy's Law is alive and well and when I returned home with my purchase, I found the stash of green wool.

Am so happy I obsessed about the green wool because the finished product is so worth it.  The background green wool reminds me of the lichens growing on old tombstones.

Tombstone Angel--she will be so fun to decorate with during Halloween.

Saturday, January 24, 2015

A Winter's Day

Snow is an anomaly in Music City.

It snowed during the night and we awoke to a beautiful winter's day.  Aren't the colors beautiful?  The bright green of the holly leaves, the red berries and the stark white of the snow?

It was a light snow, perhaps an inch of accumulation and gone when the sun appeared.

It was beautiful to look out the windows.  On cold winter days, I bake and quilt and hook and stitch.

Look at the smiles on the faces of these guys--they were feeling pretty good about the day.

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Love Never Fails

The Primitive Hare
Love Never Fails--Freebie
Left over 32 ct stash linen (Lakeside something)
Belle Soie--Rose of Sharon 

Sunday was a gathering with some of the stitch girls.  Girl time is wonderful--we stitch, we eat, we talk, we share projects.  Typically I choose simple projects for gatherings with the girls--all the activities are sometimes distracting for me and I easily make counting errors  so I choose simple projects.

Love Never Fails has been on my want to stitch list for a long time and with Valentines in a few weeks, this seemed like the perfect project.  It was also a good opportunity to shop my stash for supplies.

Don't tell AppleJack--this is his Valentine's because his love has never failed.

Monday, January 19, 2015

Maggie and Bessie

La D Da
2012 Special Market Kit
Hog Wild Blue Linen by R & R
Needlepoint Silks
Maggie and (Grandmother) Bessie were sisters.  Their parents were James Lawson and Laura Jane and they had five daughters:  Maggie, Kittie, Bonnie, Bessie and Allie.  Circumstances of life brought Maggie and Bessie closer. 

Sister Kittie married Mr. Tudor in 1912  Mr. Tudor was significantly older than Kittie and he had tuberculosis.  Mr. Tudor died March 2, 1913 at age 73, Kittie died shortly thereafter on March 23, 1914 at age 21 and sadly Laura Jane would also pass on March 6, 1915 at age 43.  Sister Bonnie would pass on October 7, 1920 at age 19 from complications from child birth. 

Maggie and Bessie like most sisters had long visits with each other.  They talked about their families--children and grandchildren, exchanged recipes, discussed the productivity of their vegetable gardens and anticipated yield of corn, green beans and okra.  They discussed the successes, failures and challenges of their flower gardens.  Both were knitters and I'm sure they had show and tell with each other. 
Sister Allie was born in 1910 and was a five year old child when her Mother died.  Sister Maggie being the oldest sister had married and had a home of her own when her Mother passed.  Maggie brought Allie to her home and Maggie was both Mother and Sister to Allie.
La D Da released another sewing kit at the 2014 St. Charles needlework market called Garden Maiden.  Seems only fitting I should stitch this kit and dedicate it to either Grandmother Laura Jane or one of the other sisters.  No pressure Lori (La D Da) it would be awfully nice if you designed additional sewing kits for the rest of the Shults sisters.

Sunday, January 18, 2015

A Walk in the Winter

Mother Nature was kind this weekend and the temps rose from single digits to the fifties.

Mr Sunshine made an appearance and it was a refreshing change to go from gray skies to bright sunshine and blue skies.

I took a brisk walk on one of my favorite walking trails.  This mile and one half trail follows the shore line of the Tennessee River.

Fresh air, sunshine, beautiful scenery--it just doesn't get any better!  Thank you Mother Nature!

Saturday, January 10, 2015

From Christmas Red to Valentine's Red

Sometimes I think I am super organized and other times I realize I am not at all organized.  As today is January 10, it's time to pull the storage containers from the closets and git er done!  One of the reasons, I have procrastinated is because one of my goals for 2015 is downsizing.  As I have been taking down the Christmas decorations, I have been sorting and making decisions about which decorations will stay and which will be enjoying Christmas in someone else's home.

 Am also sorting through needlework charts and deciding which designs I want to stitch for Christmas 2015.  All these decisions have made my pea brain hurt!  To date I have chosen Merry Christmas by La D Da, Merry Christmas by Threadwork Primitives and Jenny Bean Christmas ornament 2010 by Shakespear's Peddler.  Merry Christmas by La D Da is in the 2009 Just Cross Stitch ornament issue.  Famous last Betty words:  the designs are simple and should not take long to stitch.  One of my yearly goals is to add at least one new stitched ornament to my tree.  (Some years I make the goal, other years like 2014, I miserably fail).

Since Valentine's Day is just a few short days/weeks away, I am once again replacing the Christmas decorations with Valentine's decorations.  Another goal is to stitch the freebie design by Primitive Hare called Love Never Fails.  Again, such a simple design with powerful words and meaning.  Will make a great addition to my dough bowl of smalls.

Monday, January 5, 2015

Elizabeth 1822

Stacy Nash
Emilia Poole Sewing Basket
Weeks Dye Works Dolphin 30 Ct
Needlepoint Silks

Elizabeth 1822 is a remembrance piece for Great Great Grandmother Anna Elizabeth.  She was born December 6, 1822 in Haywood County, North Carolina.  Her parents were James and Annie.  Anna Elizabeth married William Jefferson Plemmons January 19, 1847.  Their children were:  Thomas Lafayatte, William Henry, Sarah Miranda, John Cicero, Nelson Dock and Benjamin Franklin.

Both Great Great Grandfather William Jefferson and Grandmother Anna Elizabeth would survive the Civil War.  William Jefferson was captured, wounded twice, survived the battle of Gettysburg and walked home when General Lee surrendered.  While Grandfather was fighting with the CSA 2nd North Carolina Infantry, Grandmother was working to keep the family farm intact.  

Anna Elizabeth moved with her daughter, Sarah Miranda and son-in-law, John Palmer to Emert's Cove Sevier County Tennessee in January of 1885.  Whether it was the hardships she endured during the war, the difficulties of moving or just a tired worn out body, Anna Elizabeth died shortly after the family moved from North Carolina to Tennessee.  She is buried beside her infant granddaughter in the Proffitt Cemetery in Sevier County.

From the information I have about Anna Elizabeth she seems to have lived during a challenging time in America's history and endured many hardships.  My naive Granddaughter heart wants to believe there were happy times in her life.  Perhaps, this journal (school book) and sewing basket were items she might have used and there was joy in life.