Bless the Lord, O my soul,
And forget not all His benefits:
Who forgives all your iniquities,

Who heals all your diseases,
Who redeems your life from destruction,
Who crowns you with lovingkindness and tender mercies,
Who satisfies your mouth with good things,
So that your youth is renewed like the eagle’s.
Psalm 103:2-5

Thursday, May 28, 2015

Woo Hoo! I Am A Gardener Again

Hi friends! How are ya? I am doing well with my physical therapy sessions twice weekly. Still doing my home exercise program.  I am able to work in the garden again!! :) One hosta bed that was neglected is all fixed up and pretty. The chocolate garden now needs lots of help. I am beginning.

I sent another bookmark as a thank you gift to our friend Charlene for the pretty, pink quilt fabrics she sent me. I forgot to get a picture of both sides of the bookmark. The other side, not shown, is the side with her initial.
I also sent her some unwanted aida fabric I had.  Please CLICK HERE to see what she does with people's leftovers. She has an awesome mission. Maybe you have unwanted materials you want to send to her?

Can you spot the bee?
I have a large cluster of these beauties. They all popped up from seeds I spread here last fall.
Native columbine. Which happen to be PINK and yellow.
I love these purpley blue columbine so very much. I have grown these same flowers at 3 different homes now. I gave a handful of friends seeds for these last year? Was it you? Did you plant them?
Huckleberry Fudge Bearded Iris
I hope you are doing well my friends. If not, and you would like me to pray for you, let me know. I am glad to. Thank you for stopping by. Have a super weekend!

EDIT: Our friend Jacquie needs prayer. Would you please pray for her. She is in the hospital again. Thank you!

Stitching and praying,
Vickie

Friday, May 22, 2015

Busy and Better

Hi friends! I have been busy making two styles of headbands for Madeleine ( she is growing out her bangs :).

I am busy going to physical therapy twice a week. It is helping! Truly! Our goal is to keep my pain level at a 3 without pain spikes. I am even able to walk a tad bit more on the treadmill. I am working at it. My exercises take about 35 minutes a day. We are strengthening my abdominal muscles, my back and my pelvic floor. Man! It feels good to be more physical. More active. Less frightened of being hurt. Woo hoo!

I've been busy in the garden. I was able to work in the garden for one hour last night!!! Then I made a big mistake. I did all the weed pulling on my knees, using the kneeling pad. Two garden beds are horrible with weeds because I did no work on them AT ALL last year due to pain. Well, I thought last night that I should try pulling weeds standing and bending down/over to pull. I did this for about 10 minutes after that one hour. THAT is what has my back and hips in pain today. Dumb. Correct positioning is so important!

I have also been busy making gifts for kind friends. No pictures yet. One is in the mail. The other gift is being stitched.

I did finish up another pink Quaker motif.
I am working on yet another. It will be the last. You will have to wait just a bit longer to see the finish.

I received this lovely chart from Our friend Jo. She gave away gifts for her Fourth Blogoversary.
Yes! The same pattern you recently completed dear Carolien. I thought of you. :)
Guess what?! I HAVE ALL 484 PINK FABRICS NEEDED FOR THE EPIC PINK CHARM QUILT! Yes, it is true. I want to start piecing NOW!!!! I have to finish the pink/chocolate Quaker work first. Soon.

Oh yes! Another thing that kept me busy this last month, and for many months to come. I found my ministry calling. I noticed at church that the altar robes the men and boys wear need help. Some have missing buttons, or torn button loops.  Some have soot from candles. Some have wax on them. Some have wine stains. So I discussed this with Father. He is very happy that I want to help. Each week I take home two robes after the Liturgy. I fix them up and bring them back the next week. I see this as a devotion to the greater glory of God.

I am still reading the Bible every day.

Have a fantastic weekend my friends! Thank you for your kind words.

Stitching and praying,
Vickie
The truth hurts


Tuesday, May 19, 2015

I HAVE MET A STITCHER

Hi friends! I woke up yesterday to find an email from our friend Chris. She was in Wisconsin, working for one day. She was working 25 minutes from our home!Well we arranged for Chris to come on over to our house after work.

I was so excited and happy all day. You see, I had never met another stitching friend! I really wanted to stitch something for Chris, but oh my! The time. With only hours to start and complete a gift, whatever should I do? Well, I went with what I have become rather good at this year. Can you guess? Yes, a bookmark.
 I found coordinating green fabrics. Green is Chris' favorite color. I found sweet cats to stitch up. I knew I wanted to stitch Beau and Binx. I forgot to take a picture! duh. Chris shared this one with me. :)

Here we are at our home.
Chris got to meet the whole family. Mabel and Henry included. Mabel can be a ham when we have visitors. Chris wanted to take a picture of her. Every time Chris was ready to take a picture, Mabel would turn her face. So sassy!

Sweet Chris brought me these. Lovely red geraniums.
There is little Mabel sniffing the flowers.

Chris and I went to dinner at one of our favorite burger and custard restaurants. Chris had never had frozen custard! We both had Red Raspberry. She liked it very much. :) Being the nice person that she is, she even bought custard to take home for the family. What a thoughtful, kind thing to do.

I showed Chris our downtown village area and the Falls that are responsible for our village name. Chris had to get up early. I mean really early (way before the sun) for an early flight the next morning. I am so very glad that we got to meet. What a great experience. Thank you Chris.

♥♥♥
I received a very wonderful package all the way from Australia! Our friend Noni sent me lovely, pink fabrics.
Hooray! Thank you so much Noni. I now need only 9, yes, 9 more pink fabrics. I am so very close to beginning work on this pink charm quilt. Soon. Very soon. I am busy making gifts for friends first.
EDIT: I have been to JoAnn. I bought the last 9 pink fabrics!! I need ZERO more pink fabrics! Hip hip hooray!

Stitching and praying,
Vickie

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Hope

Hi friends! How are ya? I am doing great! Our friend Barbara..... what am I going to do with her?! She keeps spoiling me. She is so kind and generous. I received a surprise gift from her.
Isn't this wonderful? This is Pomegranate Pocket by Hands On Design and the linen too! I just love Cathy's designs. Thank you again Barbara.♥

Take a look here! I have received more pink fabrics for that Epic Pink Charm Quilt.
These pretty, pink fabrics are a gift from our friend Charlene, all the way down in Arizona. Click on her name to read about her very God pleasing work. Click on projects once you get there. What Charlene is doing is so amazing and inspiring. Thank you Charlene! I now need only 17 more pink fabrics!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I have been stitching yet another pink Quaker motif on the Black Chocolate linen.

I read A Robertson Family Christmas by Miss Kay Robertson. Had no intention to. Just saw it before leaving the library and thought, "Why not?". It was alright. It is a fictional account of a typical Christmas holiday for the famous family through the eyes of a troubled teen. So it is interesting, just not exactly deep.

I have also begun physical therapy, yep! The last time I did p.t. was 9 years ago. It did not help much. I have a very good feeling this time. My therapist, Leigh, is a true Godsend. She listens, understands and cares. We are working with strengthening my abdominal muscles and working my pelvic floor. No one has ever addressed these issues in the 10 years since I fell. I have hope. I always have hope!
Thank you, thank you, thank you for your kind words and encouragement my friends. I truly appreciate you and thank God for you!

Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart
Be acceptable in Your sight,
O Lord, my strength and my Redeemer. Psalm 19:14

Stitching and praying,
Vickie

Monday, May 11, 2015

The Gift Given

Hi friends! I bet you forgot. Or you think I forgot. Nope. I have been waiting patiently?! (ha!) Father Vasyl is our only priest. He serves our church and the mission church in Madison. There are only 5 Russian Orthodox Churches in the whole state of Wisconsin. So he is very busy.

Do you recall me stitching a certain needlepoint Theotokos icon? ;)
 Yes, this has been framed for months. It is not a size that is ready to be framed. We could not afford a custom frame at this time. So, I mounted it as I usually do by pinning to the mat board. Then I taped down the excess canvas. Brian wanted to help, so I asked him if he would cut a "custom mat". I bought black scrapbook paper and he cut it to fit exactly to the edges of the needlepoint. Once that was all done and in place, I covered the back with the brown craft paper. Then Brian mounted one of those picture hanger things on back.

Well, we had thought to give this to Father and Matushka when he came to bless our home. We did not realize it would take this long, but they came yesterday. It was wonderful. The highlight of my Mother's Day! :) After the blessing, I invited them to sit for tea and the cupcakes, brownies and rice krispie treats I made. We had nice conversation for half an hour. First I first gave them the icon I stitched for them.
To say Matushka was happy is an understatement. She began to rip the wrapping paper, could see what was inside, and exclaimed, "Oh!". She jumped up and squeezy hugged me. I would never have expected that. She hugged me tight three times in all during our visit. Thanking me profusely. She told me I could not have done a bigger or better thing for her. :)
Kazan Mother of God
I cannot tell you how happy this makes me. To put months of work into a piece, and have the recipients overjoyed, well, it feels fantastic my friends. I have gone over that scene in my mind a few times now. Each time I feel so glad and have the biggest smile on my face.

Maybe you recall I told you last year that when we had gone to a graduation party for their oldest son, back in June, I had admired two different cross stitched icons in their home. I asked Father's wife if she made them. No, an old woman back in Ukraine had made these for them. She told me she would love to have a Theotokos also some day. AHA! And so I decided to make one for her. I am so very glad I did!

I am stitching another pink Quaker motif on the black chocolate linen. A challenge today for sure. It is raining and quite overcast.

Thank you for stopping in. I hope you enjoyed the story I shared.

Stitching and praying,
Vickie


Friday, May 8, 2015

Latest Stitching

Hi friends! Our friend Julie gave me some sweet gifts and pink fabric for my Pink Charm Quilt. I made her a bookmark as a thank you gift.
Julie loves pink and has two toy poodles also! The white one is Mitzi and the apricot one is Cookie.
Julie also is a wonderful pray-er. She and I are unfortunately pain pals. We pray for each other often.

If you are a longtime follower of me, you might be able to guess what this is.
Finally! 3 years ago we planted and trained this espaliered McIntosh apple tree. And we have beautiful, pale pink apple blossoms. We will see what kind of apple crop we get this fall. :)

I have not shared pictures of loaves of bread with you for quite some time. Here is another family favorite, Cheddar Cheese Bread. This is really fantastic warm!
Here is the latest pink quaker motif stitched on the 32ct Black Chocolate linen.
I placed white paper underneath it for the picture. I will share the finished Quaker piece with you this Spring, once it is completed.

Jacob is done with his sophomore year of Nursing at Marquette University. A tiny breather, then he is taking a summer course in hopes of lightening up his load in the fall.

I hope you have a wonderful weekend my friends!

Stitching and praying,
Vickie


Friday, May 1, 2015

Cutie Pin

Hi friends! Isn't this sweet?
Yes, this is the second time I have stitched up this adorable kitten. Last time for Carolien. This time for my Mom.
This is a Wichelt freebie you can find RIGHT HERE . I stitched this two over two with DMC on 32ct Wedgewood Blue lugana.

I used silk ribbon for Cutie's bow and to edge the pin. We shall see if my mom wears this pin. Not sure. I am thinking she will since she has become a "crazy cat lady". I am giving her this for Mother's Day.

I have planted my cilantro and basil outside. I am using these 2 liter soda bottles to protect them and keep them growing. We won't be frost free for at least 3 more weeks.
I am doing the finishing on a small stitched gift I am making for another friend. ;)
I hope you have a wonderful weekend my friends!
Stitching and praying,
Vickie