Monday, December 31, 2012

Adios 2012...

A big thank you to all my faithful blog followers and readers for your support throughout the year! One of the most joyful things I do for myself, is author this blog. Your kindness and friendship that each of you that visit, take time to leave a comment for me, e-mail me...whatever it may be...brings me much joy.

Thank you so very much from the very bottom of my heart!  

2013 hasn't been my most productive year in stitches however the things I've accomplished personally in my life (physically, spiritually and mentally) and those most precious moments spent with my darling husband and most wonderful children, has been most worthwhile - and truly is where my heart lies. My life is such a spectacular blessing and I intend to grab it with both hands and live it fully, faithfully and actively while I thank God for all His many blessings in my life.

For those interested, here is a slideshow of my 2012 stitching finishes... (minus a huge model that took up about 3 months of my stitching year and will be revealed in early 2013!)....

In the New Year, have you made resolutions? I haven't, really other than living life with zest, zeal and enthusiasm - living life authentically.  Remembering to live life by the golden rule to "do unto others as I would have done to me". Living life following the "golden rule" is hard, but I get up every day knowing that "today is a new day" and rejoice that I have another chance to try to follow my path in life. So...that's what my continued goal is....being a light in a harbor of darkness. Of course, my light fails from time to time, burns out, gets foggy....but that is a part of being human. Another part of humanity is knowing that if you set your mind to it, that light can get brighter, or you can change the bulb. If we all turned our lights on and tried to help our fellow man in his search for safe harbor, how wonderful would this world be? Pretty wonderful, I'm thinking....

I've got my New Year's new start all lined up and ready to go! What about you?!

In this New Year of stitching resolutions...don't forget that I still have many stitch~a~longs going on and current! Stitching~a~long with people on a project that has like minded goals and love of a certain project is great good fun!

Stitching the Little House Flock
Stitching Santa's Village Together
Little House Needleworks Ornament SAL
The Cottage Stitch~A~Long
Stitching Elizabeth Hancock
The Prairie Schooler ABC Stitching Bee

Maybe finishing some of those stitching finishes are on your list of goals for 2013? Then let me help you there too!

Learn to Finish with the Twisted Stitcher

And tonight as you celebrate your 2012 and ring in 2013, know that each of you are in my prayers for a happy, healthy and wonderful 2013!
Until next time,
Vonna xxx

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

2012 Family Ornaments...

Happy Holidays to all my blogging and stitching buds!...
I hope that each of you enjoyed your Christmas festivities! We had a fabulous, low key day - just the way we like it. Christmas Eve had us attending high Mass at the Christmas Vigil. I was slated to sing in the "choir" but only myself and another lady showed up. So being I was the only soprano there (my partner an alto), I had to sing the melody pretty much solo. I've never done this before, as my choir stint has been very short to date, so before going out I said a quick prayer that our Lord would help me sing beautifully on the birthday of His son, Jesus. And I can happily report that I had a handful of people come up to me after Mass thanking me for singing and complimenting my efforts.
was slated to be one of the alter servers at the Midnight Mass, so she and I returned to attend that Mass a few hours later. I thought I would be exhausted, but I can happily say that we were there 45 minutes before Mass began and I got to light candles for my prayer intentions and I prayed a rosary sitting in front of the creche and contemplating the whole scene and its was a beautiful night! We returned home at 2 a.m. and promptly fell be awakened by a screaming Ellie telling us that the big man had visited in the night and to "get down here and open all these presents!"     :)
A wonderful Christmas for sure!
As in previous years....
I stitched my kids their yearly ornaments for the year 2012. Last year I stitched a family ornament using a large holiday pattern from Little House Needleworks ~ "Poinsettia House" and used small motifs to stitch my girls their ornaments for the year 2011. You can see those HERE . This year I decided to stitch a set of "Family Ornaments" again using a larger design from Little House Needleworks, but stitch an ornament for each of the kids. So without further ado, here they are:
Holiday House Ornament
~The 2012 Pfeiffer Family Christmas Ornament~
Katie 2012 Ornament
~Katie's 2012 Ornament~
Ian 2012 Ornament
~Ian's 2012 Ornament~
Jake 2012 Ornament
~Jake's 2012 Ornament~
Ellie 2012 Ornament
~Ellie's 2012 Ornament~
2012 Family Christmas Ornaments
~2012 Pfeiffer Family Christmas Ornament Set~
Design Motifs taken from "HOLIDAY HOUSE"
designed by: Little House Needleworks ~ Diane Williams
Copyright: 2012
All Stitched on: 25 ct. Lugana ~ Vintage Country Mocha
Family Ornament stitched 1 over 1
Children Ornaments stitched 2 over 2
Stitched using WDW, DMC and Crescent Colours as charted
(except I used Brandied Pears instead of Hazelnut for house and urn accent colors)
I placed the last stitches...
last evening and I finished them today. I love these! And I really love how they turned out. They look sort of vintage Victorian or something....I had gone to Joann's on Dec. 24 to pick out the perfect backing fabric (which is a black/green plaid), ribbon and beads to make up these ornaments. I knew what shape and how I wanted to finish them and to be honest, they turned out better than what I had anticipated. They will definitely be making a trip to the fair next summer ;)
Bloomington has experienced a blizzard over night and through today.....we have 12+ inches of snow outside. My kiddos have been in and out and out and in so many times...I think there is 12 inches of water in the basement from the ins and outs! LOL! But I love watching them play...they are having so much fun!
Mr. Pfeiffer...
has the whole 2 weeks of holidays OFF!! WHOOP! So its going to be a lot of relaxing and fun around here :) I love it! So back to the family I must go!
Until next time...
I'll be keeping my hands to work and my heart to God, just like always. Find some time to do the same.
XXX Vonna

Friday, December 21, 2012

Stitching the Flock...

I'm still stitching away on my project, in between running here there and yonder, but I wanted to let you know that I set up a new stitch-a-long blog for Diane's new 12 month series Little Sheep Virtues . I fell in love with them as soon as I saw the sweet picture on Diane's blog. I also fell in love with the idea of a large wooden dough bowl filled with all 12 of the sheep in the flock of virtues. So, I figured I would invite all my buddies to join me!

If you would like to join the SAL, please click on this link: Stitching the Flock . There is a tab at the top of the blog that tell you how to join. Please read Diane's website (link above) to learn more about the particulars of each design. CUTE! Join me!

I want to wish all of my buddies, here in blogland, a very Merry Christmas. My thoughts and prayers are with you all. I'll be back again soon! With something stitched to share :)

~ Vonna

Monday, December 03, 2012

Oh Thomas.... do I love thee? Let me count the ways...
I love  your proud stance on that little mound of grass....
and I especially love your primitive glance....
Thomas 1
I love your little wing with its bright stripe of turquoise...
and your sweet little waddle hanging under your nose...
Thomas 3
I love your date plaque with 1863....
and I imagine shaking those handsome tail-feathers brings all the female turkeys to their knees...
Thomas 2
...and those flowering, trailing vines are the perfect added touch....
along with that key that I long to clutch...
Thomas 4
Oh, sweet Thomas, you cut a fine figure....
your finish just fills me, overflowing with vigor!
Thomas 5
designed by: Notforgotten Farm ~ Lori Brechlin
Copyright 2007
Stitched on: 40 ct. linen shade: Hazelnut
using my own color conversion to hand-dyed cottons in Crescent Colours and Gentle Arts
I placed the last stitch...
In Mr. Thomas on Saturday afternoon. That butterball of his about got me! But I persevered and now Thomas lies with J.M. Gardner, awaiting a trip to my framer.
I moved on to another project and have a significant portion done on this pretty design:
Holiday House
Holiday House ~ by Little House Needleworks
I'm not stitching it...
as shown above, however, and that is my surprise for next time you come to visit! (there is a lot of stitching involved with how I'm doing it will be a while!) But I can say, it is turning out just like I had it envisioned! :) and I bet you will like it too!
Saturday past...
marked the first day of the Advent Season, and my family and I went to Confession (followed by Mass), so that we could start the season out on the right foot. As we traveled home, we talked about the lighting of the first Candle on our Advent wreath and the prayers we say for the season. I try to make every day special for my kids, but during the holidays, I want them to experience the wonder and excitement as no other time,  as we await our Savior's birth. Then to be able to attend Christmas Mass with pure hearts and view the infant Jesus snug in his manger with Mary, Joseph and the livestock looking on Him. Yes, it is truly the tradition and repetition of our faith throughout the liturgical year that keeps us grounded and gives us goals of living life to the best and fullest of our potential. Our children are aware and learning these traditions as they grow, for that Keith and I are humbled. We have been mightily blessed and to raise our children in our Catholic tradition is our honor to do so.
I believe...
that does it for my little update. I had to share my sweet Thomas with all of you  :)
And know that until next time, I'll be keeping my hands to work and heart to God, as I stitch and pray and live as best I can.
Love in stitches,

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas...

...around here friends! I'll let the pictures do the talking (for the most part)....

Front Walk 2012
The walk from the drive-way to our front door...

Sled 2012
An old 1950's sled with my Mom's old skates from her childhood...
Christmas Front Door 2012
A winter wonderland at our front door...
....saw THESE and had the bright idea that I could make great big ones for each side
of my front door to set in my black urns. Long story short....went to Hobby Lobby, after 6 sheets of poster board, 6 miles (no really just 6 packages) of white iridescent garland, two 50 count LED light sets, glue, tape and hot glue (not to mention ONE looooooong afternoon....) Viola! Perfection, no?!
made the wreath too (next day though...)
Santa China Cabinet
My Santa Collection atop my China Cabinet...
Ahhh....Our Tree! It rotates so some different views of it as it turns...
Tree 2012 _ 2
Tree 2012 _ 1
Tree 2012 _ 3
What is Christmas without a poinsettia...
Jolly Man
The Jolly Man...
(NOTE: my first ever made flatfold all those years ago!)
The Mantle 2012
The Stockings were hung...
I love Christmas....
can you tell? This is only a small part of our decorations. I've got 4 nativity sets, 2 large statues of the Holy Family, A Santa Tree....lots more, but I wanted to just give you a sampling...not make you fall asleep with boredom!
What am I stitching?...
well not what I thought I would be last post! (I hate it when I do that!) See friends, when I was at the retreat this fall...there was this fascinating lady with the most fantastic projects going. She had things that I had seen before, but done in a way that made me slobber wanting to do them too. One of her projects was Thomas by Notforgotten Farm. Well I thought about that turkey, and thought and thought some more about him. Dreamed about him (yes!).... so figuring enough was enough, I bought him and started him. Here he is as he stands to date:

designed by: Lori Brechlin ~ Notforgotten Farm
stitched on hand-dyed Hazelnut 40 ct. linen
using my own conversion to over-dyed Crescent Colours and Gentle Arts (!)
He is a fatty and there are LOTS of stitches in him. I get tired of doing the same color on his body, so I play a game with myself, I do a thread or two of brown on his body and then go to a different color in the border. I'm running out of the different colors, so I better just stick to getting his butterball done :)
Also of note is: the colors are my own conversion to over-dyes. I had the fascinating lady's conversion, but I thought I'd give a try at converting DMC to over-dyes and to be honest...I'm pretty doggone pleased with how Tom is turning out! I may have to try that again sometime!
Does it seem to you, dear stitchers...
that there is a plethora, and I mean PLE-THO-RA of wonderful designs coming out? Or is it just me? I'm just shocked and amazed, well actually, I'm not at all shocked and amazed but my husband is as he follows me around with a smoking credit card and the bill unfurling in the breeze I make as I run from hither and yon purchasing things ;)
A sampling of the goodies coming to live with me are:
All is Calm
**think about this one, stitched one over one as a Christmas ornament**
eliza scattergood
Eliza Scattergood ~ Plum Street Samplers
**love the verse**
Isabella Fox 1827
Isabella Fox ~ Gigi R designs
**Adam and Eve - DUH!**
Frances Pool
Frances Pool ~ reproduction by Brenda Gervais
of With My Needle and Thread ~ Country Stitches
**after finishing J.M. Gardner....I'm hooked on Brenda's Reproductions - I'm going back for a repeat**
Hollyberry Farm
Hollyberry Farm ~ Stacy Nash Primitive Designs
**I about swallowed my tongue when I saw this on Stacy's blog yesterday. So what else is a girl to do other than SNAP it UP!?!?!?!**

ALL this goodness...
during the season of seasons! Of course I have a ton of designs all kitted and ready to go already....but I couldn't live without these sweeties. (Now if I could just buy some more time)...
not only these that I've featured are coming out...but I know Diane at Little House Needleworks has been teasing her facebook and blog followers with tidbits about her upcoming series for 2013. Nikki at Country Cottage Needleworks  and her Santa Village. I'm going to have to stitch day and night and probably get a catheter so I can just sit and stitch and not bother about getting up to use the restroom. Maybe that can be my new diet plan too!! HEY! that's a good, great idea!
"Honey, I have to buy these patterns because they are going to help me lose weight, cause I won't have time to eat...."
I don't think he'll buy that....
Oh well...
Until next time...I'll be keeping my hands to work and heart to God, while I'm stitching, and living, and praying and thinking up some good excuses for our credit card bill!
Love in stitches,

Wednesday, November 07, 2012

Miss J.M. Gardner....

Sweet J.M.....
oh how I do love you. I watched  you grow on your Mama's Blog and you looked pretty, but I just didn't get around to buying you...

JM Gardner 5

Then I fell in cahoots with....
a big group of enablers and I suddenly was rabid with curiosity. I saw many people begin to stitch you. I saw a hoard of people scrambling to buy you. And then there I was....pushing people out of the way to get you myself!

JM Gardner 4
Then, as all things with me....
the fabric that you were supposed to be created on, of course was out of stock....
and I was in shock....
until a very, nice and knowledgeable lady decided to help me out.
JM Gardner 2
We were at....
the House of Stitches, but it may as well be called the House of Fabric, because never have I seen so many gorgeous fabrics wanting to go home with me. The very nice and knowledgeable lady, told me to, "Never fear, my dear. There will be one here!"  And sure, enough there certainly was!
JM Gardner 3
she cut you to size, and folded you up and I brought you right home with me to stitch up! I started last week, and not to be cheeky, I feel in love you quickly. I couldn't stitch fast enough, to see you grow. Mad was I with my needle and thread! Then, to my obvious delight, I finished you last night!
May I present to you:
J. M. Gardner
Stitched on: 36 ct. Lentil by Lakeside Linens
Stitched with: DMC, Gentle Arts and Weeks Dye Works  ~ as called for in design
Copyright: 2012
JM Gardner 1
Isn't she beautiful?.... ah, yes! Yes, she is and she is all mine....
a new to me product that Liz at my Local Needlework Shop  introduced to me. I must say...pretty doggone tight this product is! (thank you, to my teenager's vernacular)
:) LOVE IT! :) You slip your charts inside and it stands up on the table (or for me it sits so prettily in my clip on my frame). Perfecto!
Pattern Holder
Trade Anyone?.....
I'd like to trade my gently used J.M. Gardner pattern (shown below; minus the chart holder) with someone that is interested and has the goods that I seek. What I'd like to trade for is a couple of other With Thy Needle and Thread designs, specifically Hilda's Letter Brew or Letters for Santa . Interested parties? please contact me at my e-mail address (listed in sidebar under the mailbox picture) Thanks!

JM Gardner Pattern
Other than stitching like a fiend....
for the last week, nothing much has been going on around here ~  NOT complaining! I've sorta neglected my house-wifely-motherly duties because I've been babysitting J.M. I hate dust and debris and being that my kids were home all day yesterday destroying the house ~ it looks like a rumble in the jungle has gone on ~ things gotta change around here today!
Because tomorrow, I plan on starting.....
New Project
Hmmm....what is my new project?! You'll just have to come back and see next time! But I will give you a couple of hints: 40 ct. Pear linen and the Holidays! ;o)
Until next time....
I'll be keeping my hands to work and my heart to God, just like always! Join me....
Love in stitches,
Vonna xxx

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Stitching Santa's Village...

Nikki Leeman of Country Cottage Needleworks announced yesterday that she will be beginning a NEW 12 month series entitled Santa's Village. You can read all about it here: Santa's Village.

And being that I love to stitch-a-long, I've opened a Stitch~A~Long Blog and you can view it here: Stitching Santa's Village Together I also have laid out some stitching options, etc under the various tabs so that you can consider and contemplate :)

If you would like to join us in the stitching frenzy, please follow the instruction on the blog under "JOIN".

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Shipshewana goodness...

How's it going people?!
I tell you what...I just returned from a fabulous weekend of friends, food, fun and spending money!
I attended the Inspired Needle retreat in Shipshewana, Indiana this past weekend and a great time!

I'll let the pictures do the talking...

Shipshewana 1
Lots of stitching...

Shipshewana 2
My table mates and more stitching...

Shipshewana 3
Saturday night exchange group...

One of the main reasons...
was to meet up with the Illinois stitchers, many of whom I have an online friendship with through blogging. I met them and they accepted me into their group unconditionally! We had a good great time and I think they even liked me :) or at least I sure do hope they did!

Here's some gals many of know...
on the fair end is Linda of Keeper of the Crowes , in the middle is Brenda of Brenda's Stitching  and finally is Karin A Stitching Expat Life . In front in the blue plaid shirt is Ranae of Stitch by Stitch
and next to her in the teal and black sweater is Ranae's good buddy Anna (no blog).

Shipshewana 4

Here's a sweet picture of the gals directly across the table from me...
I got to look and view their sweet, smiling faces any old time I wanted! In the red sweater is Pat (no blog), Linda and Brenda. All of these ladies, are just as sweet and kind as can be! :) Hi ya girls!

Shipshewana 5

Here is Barb (holding coffee cup) and Jayne another pair of sweethearts! (neither blog) Barb is like a guru with linen colors for projects. I believe most of us used her expertise a lot during the weekend. (Which you will see more below....)

Shipshewana 6

There was lots situations going on at the Situation Table. In depth discussions deciding on fabrics, projects, charts - which usually resulted in me purchasing something else, even if I wasn't in on the Situation Table discussion! I nicknamed the whole frenzied scenario "SHARK ATTACK" ~ cue Jaws Theme Music *please*!

Shipshewana Situation Table 1
Barb overseeing the color of linens...

Shipshewana Situation Table 2
More consultations...notice Barb again available for discussions!

Shipshewana Situation Table 3
Situations being discusses with Patti (left), Jayne, Kellie and Pat

What is a retreat...
I ask you if you don't spend a little cash (Okay, Okay, a lot of cash) Here's the stash I purchased.
(I won't bore you with the Brighton Bracelet and charms, little nick-nacks and food that I got to bring home to my kiddos....)

Shipshewana Stash 1
I purchased 4 charts (believe me I had more, but I thinned them out as I have enough charts to start my own business!) But the ones that I couldn't leave behind are (back to front):
Prairie Moon - Peace on Earth
With Thy Needle and Thread - JM Gardner (which I called 50 different names all weekend)
The Scarlett House - Christmastide at Holly House
By the Bay - Mermaid Cove

The girls decided I need to visit....
The House of Stitches in LaPorte, Indiana (about an hour north of Shipshewana) because they knew I'd never been there and that I too needed to go pay homage :) So on Friday, Brenda loaded us up and off we went! I, not having a shop that has such an extensive fabric selection near to me, went a little nuts:

Shipshewana Stash 2

On Saturday evening...
We all were gifted with this sweet scissors holder, beaded fob and DOVO scissors!

The Shipshewana Prize

On Sunday....
we all had to pack up and leave. I wanted to get a group shot of all my stitching Buds so here we are! Yeah, I belong in a gang! :)

The Shipshewana Gang
(far back l - r): Barb and Laura (Maude and Mozart)
(back): Katrina (The Needle's Promise), Anna, Karin, Patti, Jayne and Kellie
(sitting): Me, Pat, Linda, Brenda
(front): Ranae

I finally wanted to get a picture with the two people that made it possible for me to attend:
Cathy (owner of Inspired Needle)
Laura who bugged Cathy and got me on the waiting list!

Shipshewana 7
Laura, Cathy and Me

What a fabulous, great, good time I had! Thank you Cathy for a wonderful experience and awesome retreat!

I also want to wave hello to all the stitchers I met, both new friends and old friends! And a special thank you to the Illinois stitchers that welcomed me with open arms and treated me just like I was one of their own! I love you gals!

what did I stitch on retreat?! Well I had a lot of stuff in my bag! I also bought a lot of stuff....but I stitched on only one thing. I had hoped to *bang* it out in a day, but due to my BS-ing I kept on miscounting and frogging and miscounting and frogging. Heck, I think I stitched this cottage about two times over from all my stitching and frogging. But finally today, I finished it and here she is:

March Cottage
"March Cottage"
Country Cottage Needleworks ~ Nikki Leeman
Copyright 2012
Stitched as charted's where I am to date on the project....I know BEHIND as usual!
Cottage to date

Speaking of Country Cottage Needleworks...
have you seen the announcement of her New Series? You can view a snippet and read an explanation to Nikki's latest and greatest 12 month series here: Santa's Village

Does it strike your fancy?...
well it should! It has mine and because I'm the master of disaster...I'm going to open a Santa's Village Stitch~A~Long (SAL). If you would like to join....(and if I were you, I'd reserve my spot if you plan on purchasing and stitching these pretties as spots ALWAYS go rather quickly) Please kindly e-mail me: Vonna at and I'll get you on the list. I haven't created the blog yet, but I will ASAP.

Thank you so much...
my dear friends, blogging buddies and readers for hanging on for this rather loooooong post! Until next time, I'll be keeping my "hands to work and heart to God" just like always!
Vonna xxx