You can’t help but be grateful when surrounded by abundance. But what about when you’re surrounded by sadness? Or heartache? Or loneliness?
Gratitude, to me, is a living, breathing thing. It can literally bring life to barren places. Fill the holes in our emotional buckets.
Counting blessings in the middle of emotional turmoil might be cliche–but I’ve often suspected that cliches are overused for a reason.
Counting blessings in the middle of happiness and wholeness, makes the moment that much sweeter.
And then of course, the act of sharing gratitude–giving thanks–expressing our appreciation to those, divine or otherwise, who have facilitated, is the capstone of it all.
Thank you. I don’t know what makes people come to my little corner of the internet, and be so kind and encouraging–but thank you. I adore sharing a little part of my world with you.
Cut the following:
(1) 7″ square linen
(2) 2” x 6 1/2” strips (navy)
(4) 2” x 9 1/2” strips (green)
(2) 2” x 12 1/2” strips (navy)
Trace the embroidery pattern on the center of the linen square. Stitch as desired. I used a running stitch for the design, and a backstitch for the word.
Square up to 6 1/2” square, centering the embroidery.
Stitch (1) 2” x 6 1/2” strip to each side of embroidered piece, pressing seams toward strips.
Stitch (1) 2” x 9 1/2” strip to top and bottom of block, pressing toward green strips.
Stitch (1) 2” x 9 1/2” strip to left and right of block, pressing toward green strips.
Stitch (1) 2” x 12 1/2” strip to top and bottom of block, pressing toward navy strips.
Download the embroidery pattern, here.
October. The beginning of the magical holiday season, here in my neck of the woods.
As a child, October 1st signaled this thing, this almost tangible shift in the air of anticipation, and surprises, and things out of the ordinary, sure to delight.
As a mama, that’s how I want my children to feel–and I do my darndest to create that magic in our home, in our lives, in our traditions.
We say farewell to the summer with a bonfire at the equinox, and we begin plotting and planning and decorating for the festivities to come.
We create reasons to spend time together, to make and do together.
In the end, much of the magic is created by Mama (and Daddy too) being a little more in the moment, a little more willing to do those things that are less than convenient.
I believe, after all, that we are all Creators, for sure.
Plus, I like the title. Mom: Creator of Magic.
Make some magic, friends.
The instructions on this block are quick and simple, kids.
Use the paper piecing pattern to make 4 quarter blocks. (I made mine with (not very pretty) Y seams, and thought you’d like this way better. :)
Stitch quarter blocks together to make a full block. Press seams open to reduce bulk where you will appliqué.
Trace appliqué words on to fuse able interfacing, adhere to wrong side of fabric, and cut out.
Iron on letters, then stitch around.
Download the paper piecing pattern here.
My favorite flowers are Dahlias–I love the intricate petals, the density of the booms, and the symmetry of nature. Seriously, I could stare at them for hours.
Almost like a mini version of Dahlias, I also love fall mums. Mine start blooming in full right around the end of August, and last until the frost does them in in November or so.
I love how they start blooming right when the other flowers start quitting, giving up because of the slight chill in the air.
That’s how I want to be. I want to bloom, even when things aren’t perfect–in fact, I’d like to bloom because I’ve decided that anytime is the perfect time.
Bloom where (and when) you’re planted, chickadees.
Cut the following:
(5) dresden wedges
(1) of each template echo (A, B, and C)**
(1) 12 1/2” linen square
**You may choose to cut these pieces out using fuse able web, as they will be raw edge appliquéd to the final block. I chose to cut them without webbing to avoid stiffness in the block, and just used temporary fabric glue to affix them prior to sewing. Also–I cut out my “Echo” pieces freehand to match my dresden points and valleys exactly…but I figured telling you to freehand it would probably stress some people out. So, there are templates. If you need to adjust them to match up with your individual wedges, by all means, go ahead. :)
Fold the wedge pieces lengthwise, right sides together.
Stitch along both the top and bottom edge. clip the inside corners, being careful to avoid the stitches.
Turn the pieces right side out, flattening the stitched edges to make a point on both ends. Press.
Stitch the wedge pieces together by putting right sides together along the long edges. Press seams open or to one side.
Temporarily affix or lay out echo pieces on the block.
Begin with Echo C,
then Echo B,
then Echo A.
Place partial dresden on the top. Temporarily glue or pin pieces in place.
Stitch the pieces in place, using a 1/16” topstitch. I chose to do a 2nd stitch on the dresdens, 1/8” away from the first stitches.
Trace (or eyeball :) the swirls coming from the flower, and stitch them using a running stitch.
Trace the word “BLOOM” and stitch using a backstitch.
Download the template pieces and embroidery pattern, here.
August. It’s all about swimming pools, and sunshine. Am I right or am I right?
So naturally, this block just had to be made from a nice pool aqua, and golden sun yellows, and some orange too, for the sweltering heat.
Here’s the thing. By the end of August, I’m almost always at the end of my hot weather rope. A girl can only take so much sweating to death in the dry arid desert mountains. (<–Utah.)
So that first little chill in the air that hits right around the end of August? One of my favorite things ever–because fall? Best season. Of course, Spring, Winter, and Summer are the best too.
Turns out I’m a season girl.
I love that the seasons always manage to change just when I think I can’t stand another day of cold, or hot, or mud, or wind.
It keeps me excited and looking forward, encouraged, to know that change will come, and bring fresh new days with it.
Cut the following:
(12) 3″ orange squares
(12) 3″ yellow squares
(24) 3″ aqua squares
(1) 3″ x 12″ linen rectangle
(2) 1-1/4″ x 2-1/2″ aqua strips
(2) 1-1/4″ x 11″ aqua strips
Pair each yellow square and each orange square with an aqua square.
Mark a diagonal line on the wrong side of all yellow and orange squares and stitch on either side of the marked line, or use my HST Hack method to make 2 Half Square Triangles from each yellow/aqua and orange/aqua pair. Square up the HSTs to 2″.
Stitch HSTs into (6) yellow/aqua and (6) orange/aqua pinwheels. Make pinwheels by arranging as shown, stitching top two and bottom two HSTs together, pressing seams in opposite directions to allow the seam to nest. Stitch rows together. Square up to 3-1/2″. Set aside.
Mark a 10-1/2″ x 1-1/2″ rectangle on the linen rectangle using a disappearing marker. Using the templates provided, applique the letters in the rectangle you just marked. Square up rectangle to 2″ x 11″.
Stitch long aqua strips to both sides of linen word strip. Press toward aqua. Stitch short aqua strips to top and bottom of linen word strip. Press toward aqua.
Lay out the pinwheels as shown, stitch together in columns, and then stitch columns together.
Finish assembling the block by stitching pinwheel sections to bordered word strip.
Finished block: 12-1/2″ x 12-1/2″
Download the block letters here.