Tuesday, December 28, 2010

The end of the Mystery Quilt ?

Is it the end of the Mystery Quilt from Born To Quilt ? Not yet!!! But I have finally finished block 10 and will now start block 11. I must admit that block 12 is a favourite of mine so I should be fast in doing block 11 to move on to block 12!!! I know now how is the MQ going to look like and I can't wait to see the top finished!!!!!! So I'd better spend less time on the computer and more time stitching ;-)

Block 10

Until later,

Friday, December 24, 2010

Christmas at home

What is a typical French Christmas ? In fact there are many traditions and I will share with you what we do here at home.
In the photos you have the atmosphere... only the smells of cake baking and mulled wine are not there... but you can easily imagine!!!
Christmas in my family starts today, on Christmas Eve. The house has been decorated for several weeks and there are candles burning everywhere, in every room, on windowsills, in the flight of stairs.

This afternoon, by five, we will drink mulled wine or hot chocolate and eat French toast with mandarines and litchies. It helps us wait for dinner which will be after mass.
Family members will arrive at 7.30pm, some will go to mass with us and some will stay home as housesitters!! That's what I call them but the truth is that they don't want to come to mass!!!

Mass is at 9.00pm. It's always a beautiful mass. For me, Christ's birth is the reason why Christmas is important.

We will start dinner by midnight. On the menu this year, foie gras on toast and black olive tapenade on toast, raw oysters, and a salmon and spinach pie. As a dessert we're going to have our homemade "croustade aux pommes", which is a kind of apple pie. We will drink champagne only.
As you can see, there is no "buche de noël" which is the typical French dessert for Christmas!! So I guess my family has its own traditions!

My wife will play the guitar and sing. My daughters will play the flute and the clarinet and I, for the sake of everyone, will not sing!! :-)

Stitched in 2008. Model : Blackbird Designs.

The next day we will have a Kougloff for breakfast. It is a typical Christmas Alsacian cake.

We will open the presents that arrived under the tree when everybody was asleep. The presents at my house are only opened in the morning, never on Christmas Eve.

Christmas day will be at my wife's brother's house.

This year, with my daughter, we had decided to make something the guests could bring home. So, we made small labels, that can be used as ornaments. One has Joyeux Noël on it, one has Merry Christmas and the last one has Season's Greetings. They were fun to make and a good way to share some special time with my youngest daughter as well as a good means to get into the Christmas spirit...

I wish you all a blessed and peaceful Christmas. May your homes be filled with Christmas love and your hearts with Christmas cheers.


Until later,

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Quilting books and what I've been up to.

What I've been up to ??? It's been quite a while again since my last post!!!
The reason for my silence is that my dear friend from Portland passed away. We met 19 years ago in Portland and we had become very close friends. He was a model, a mentor and I admired him. We have seen each other almost every year since when we first met and I am happy to have seen him three times last year. I will miss him...
I went to Portland to say a last good bye and I just came back on Monday evening. Though it was a sad journey, the ceremonies have been uplifting, the time spend with his family and friends comforting.
We will meet again when my time will come... I feel blessed to have known so great a man and to have counted him as a dear friend. It will continue to help me throughout my life. And my thoughts and prayers are first and foremost for his wife, children and grandchildren.

On Twitter, a friend of mine wished me my needlework pleasure to keep me in comfort... yes, it will, as when I work with my needle, it is a time of prayers and thoughts wandering...

Let's go back to quilting stuff, as it is why you read my blog, I guess!!!
I have to share with you the two new books I received a few weeks ago!! I love them!!! The first one is from Jo Ann Mullaly. After Wool Crazy, which was a great success, she is back with fifteen wool projects in Crazy At Home! A great book with great projects!

The second book is from Kim Dielh! It's the fifth book in her "Simple" series. Like the other books, it is filled with country quilts, charm and this time she has used wool in several projects. Moreover there are additional projects that go with the main quilts and I think it is just a very good idea. So if you want my opinion, just order your copy as it is a must- have and you will want to make all the projects in the book! I want to!!!! I just need time ;-)

There is just one problem!!! Wool is not widely available in France and it is very expensive! So I guess I should open an online European store for hand-dyed wools as a second job!!! That would be fun!!!!
But no! I am definitely too busy already!!!
Until later my dear friends,