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We have had visitors – many visitors! – thank goodness not the ones that chew on the porch either – they have been visiting a friend and eating her porch instead! And so a few little treats must be dispensed many times every day – peanut butter for the little red squirrel (smooth cause the crunchy is for me!), seeds for the birds who then toss them on the floor for the squirrels, grain and carrots and hmmm a few mandarins for the deer and oh my – anything that is edible for the raccoons – stale cookies and crackers, deer food, sunflower seeds, cat kibble – these critters will eat ANYTHING and I figure if I keep them fat and happy they will not destroy my house! So 5 little babies are now 5 chunky teenagers!..

Sherri finished her sweet stockings in time! yeahhhh. These were custom designed by Shelly Atkinson for Sherri’s granddaughters who are skiers… A bit of decorating finished, my favourite Christmas CD’s loaded…and now cookies to be baked…(and hidden from Gord who would eat them all before the holidays!) and yes, I know those of you who know me think I do not cook which is true but occasionally I do bake! The shortbread is cooling on the porch and the ginger cookie dough is resting in the fridge!…

What a wonderful hookin hosted by the ladies from the Martintown and Beaconsfield guilds! Mother Nature must have been happy to have a bunch of hookers gathering as we had perfect weather (a tad nippy but clear and sunny) so there was a fabulous turnout. Lunch provided by the ladies consisted of about 8 different delicious soups and breads followed up by an assortment of treats so no-one went hungry. The vendors were wonderful – from beautiful hand made wooden items, rughooking supplies, Oxford punch needle supplies, hand spun yarns, luscious precut velvet strips, hand made fimo hooks, miniature punch needle supplies – we had it all! AND!!! Gord won a door prize – well he THINKS HE WON IT – in actual fact hmmmmm, it may become mine 🙂 . quadcopter gas motor Anddddd – since I have done such a marvellous job of decluttering I added a new piece to my stash. A wonderful little bench that came from a nunnery (gosh that sounds rather Shakespearean) in Quebec. This will be added to my collection – hmmm how many benches do I have now? Each is so beautiful with wonderful patina – I love vintage and antique benches and boxes – the grungier the better. This one is wonderful because there are 2 layers to the top – one screws off and can be covered with a hooked mat and screwed back on… Ahhhhh, another winter project!

Gill did a punch needle version of Karla Gerard 2 Raccoons (I carry this pattern as a punch needle kit or rughooking pattern)… I love this piece especially as we seem to have adopted 3 baby raccoons who hoover the sunflower seeds the chickadees toss off the bird feeder onto the porch for them… and Christine sent me a picture of her wool feather wreath – years ago I made a feather tree out of wool – hmmm mine was not as beautiful as Christine’s wreath – in fact!!!! it ended up in the garbage. n game There are instructions on youtube on how to make these wreaths – I may have to try again!!!!… Today is our Guild potluck and ornie exchange. Should be a fun fun day… hope yours is as well….

My last event of the year will be this coming Tuesday in Williamstown – International Rughooking Day hosted by the Wild and Woolly Rughookers from Martintown and the Beaconsfield Hooking Guild. Last year’s event was such fun. Here’s hoping we have a sunny day and dry roads for travelling. Today is NOT a day I would want to be on the road – freezing rain, snow. So a good day to start decorating for the holidays – wonky Charlie Brown tree is going up as are some of my favourite decorations.

In the meantime, I am starting to hook a primitive Santa that will then be attached to one of the many wooden stocking stretchers I bought at an antique store hmmmm a year or maybe!!!! two ago. He will have to be tall and skinny to fit on the stocking stretcher – maybe he is suffering from my cooking or lack thereof! As part of the cleaning, reorganizing and decluttering I have decided I need to DO SOMETHING WITH ALL THE WONDERFUL ANTIQUES AND JUNK PIECES I HAVE COLLECTED – or rather, that is what Gord says! I am happy to just gaze at them fondly as I dust them off but Gord says – no more junkin’ till the junk is gone!… So I used up one of my beautiful old victorian picture frames and now only have 2 left to fill; I have a beautiful old grungy painted yellow and red box that will hold a punch needle piece, I stacked some of my footstools in the now redecorated basement plus my antique grain sifter! So maybe by the time Diane comes for a visit in a few weeks there will be space for new junk 🙂 . gas quality comparison Ahhhh the heart has just started pitter-pattering in anticipation!!!!!!!

Well, TV room is done! cleaned, repainted, decluttered and reorganized – all the “stuff” has been moved to the porch for our guild auction next spring or for the thrift store. It looks and feels so much better and we found nothing living or mummified behind the biggggg furniture. Now onto the storage rooms where I have, hmmmm, more “stuff” to dispose of including an antique, very primitive wool winder, some antique drying racks, a long primitive shelf – hmmm maybe I need to have a sale! 🙂

Our final box class with teacher Helen Gordon went really well – it was a bit overwhelming at times but we all finished (or are in the process of finishing) our wonderful boxes. I love the way my box turned out and once I have pix from the rest of the class will share all the box pictures. In the meantime, a picture of mine and my sister’s plus some pictures of what Helen and I were up to this weekend and some pictures from others of completed pieces…

Betty’s sweet sheep punch needle box… Helen mounted her punch needle to one of the paddles-by-Vince that I sell… and this one to an old, we think, butter paddle – isnt that sky amazing… and this one to a vintage sewing machine drawer (pattern by A piece of work that I carry)… I framed my version of Sheep Farm… and Helen’s stunning poppies mounted on Loden coating…

We finally decided to repaint our TV room – of course that involves moving furniture, cleaning, decluttering etc. c gastronomie limonest But I love the process and the end result. Guess I am one of those weird people who actually like to paint and Gord and I have it down to a fine art. Of course, I am the queen of tape. Must run in the family. My dad had fibreglass tape which he used to stick everything together so that it was virtually impossible to open things – including the boxes of delicious Christmas cookies we would make each year; my sister Di would use duct tape to glue together socks, holes in the bottoms of her pj’s, pillow cases. Invariably when she was living with us I would find bits and pieces of various tapes in the dryer. And me – well I tape EVERYTHING when I paint so that when I rip off the tape it is perfect, clean with nice straight lines 🙂 . gas prices in michigan So, at 5:30 this morning the painters tape came out and now there is green tape on the floor, on baseboards, around plugs etc. May take us a few weeks as we usually do one wall at a time and then put back furniture so that things are not quite so disorganized. Ahhhhhh, it will be clean once again. Some pieces of huge heavy furniture have not been moved in a few years – yikes. What might be living or growing back there?????

So in the meantime not much hooking or punching is going on. Although last week I took a box making class in Ottawa taught by Helen Gordon. gas 1940 Initially I think most of us found it a tad stressful – having to do all the math so that things fit together perfectly was not something any of us expected. But when ALL OF A SUDDEN THE LIGHT WENT ON we all got our pieces measured, cut and yikes, laced together. Now lacing sounds easy buttttttt when your lacing thread BREAKS on the 5th tightening – it is not a good thing! But by the end of the day all of us were having fun and excited to go home, do our homework and return next week to put it all together. I cannot wait to see the finished pieces – some were going to frame punch needle on the tops of their boxes, hooking, proddy, lacework, quilting – it will be such fun. I will try to take pictures of the various pieces for show and tell.