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Sunday, December 18, 2011

The Dynamic Duo is Back!

Back when I first opened my shop, many years ago, Hubs used to work along side me.  I know some of you would cringe if your Hubs infringed on your territory, but we usually had a lot of fun.  He worked quilt shows, cut fat quarters, cut kits, did binding....and confesses to knowing more than any man should about quilting!  Believe it or not, it was less stressful for me when I had him working with me, than when I didn't.  Well, due to circumstances beyond our control, he finds himself with a little more time on his hands, and we find ourselves having a 'homemade' Christmas.  It has been a roller coaster week with emotions running everywhere, but I have pulled myself up by my bootstraps and am moving on.  Having 6 adult children with 3 significant others, we have never spent much on Christmas anyway, but I did have to take back the few things that I had bought.  After my own little pity party, I re-channelled my energies. 

One of my customers told me that one of the best things she ever did for a Christmas get together that she had gone to was to make a basket of everyday goodies.  She didn't wrap anything, just added a few bows, and filled the basket up with everything from First Aid kits to smelly lotions, etc.  I was already going to steal this idea for the kids....but now, it will be their only gifties....and will all be handmade.

So, Hubs and I spent the day yesterday running 2 longarm machines, embroidery machine and my poor little Janome.  I will show you some of what we got done, but I can't wait until you see the rest!  I have to tell you, we had an absolute blast working together again!  He wanted me to show him how to use one of the longarms, so we practiced....

These are table mats.  Hubs quilted 6 of them.  I'm stitching the binding on with the sewing machine and he will whip-stitch the other side of the binding on this week.  These will be rolled and tied and will be one of the gifties in the basket.  Because he used batiks, there will be no right or wrong side!  Sweeeeeet!

I can only show you above and below without showing you what they will be yet.  So far, we have created 3 different ones, with my favorite NOT being in the pics.  I'm going to try to get these two projects longarmed today, perhaps teaching Hubs how to do this.  If he doesn't learn to do the custom quilting of these, he will be doing more training on the embroidery machine.  You know what they say about idle hands!
The three step-daughters have never really been into the whole 'handmade' deal.  My half of the Brady Bunch always has.  Prodigal Son has nabbed more of my quilts than anyone....Reptile Son has a list and needs a couple new quilts (notice I didn't say just one...) and Princess Daughter used to actually craft Christmas gifts with me.  I'll never forget the year we made a million christmas ornaments for her to give to everyone on her basketball team, her teachers, her grandmas....I even snuck one for myself.  :*)

I do have a feeling that after this Christmas, ALL six of our children will have a whole new appreciation for that which is handmade.  The fact that their Dad was the one who actually made their gifties will convert them for sure!  Oh, and don't feel bad for the boys.....they are getting gifties of MOUNTAINS of homemade cookies, peanut brittle and fudge! 

We are more excited about this Christmas than we have been about any Christmas in a long time!  I hope yours is a blessed one, filled with family and friends.  Ours will be....and we are counting our blessings daily!


pcflamingo said...

Home Made Christmas sounds like it was a blast to orchestrate and I hope everyone enjoys it! Love the work you've done!

Julie S said...

Love your post, Cynthia. Have a wonderful *homemade* Christmas!