Sunday, December 29, 2013


Ah, rug hooking…..yes, I remember that is what this blog is supposed to be about.  Not puppies, not horses, not theatre….RUG HOOKING!  And tonight, it is.  Here are some not very good photos of my latest project.  It is a KLIMT rug that I started in a Pris Buttler class at the Nebraska City RETREAT.  The photos are a little blurry, but they are the best I have for tonight's blogging.

The purpose of this hooking project was to get me out of my normal 'box'.  I love muted colors, grey tones and a primitive palette.  I also like working in black and white.  Pris suggested that I might be stuck in a rut!!!!!  She suggested I use some brighter colors in a project to test myself a little and this was the result.  Pris threw out a few pieces of wool, a couple of greens, the blue and purple, an orange and magenta and said "Deal with it!"  Well, to be honest, she suggested I pick an area and try putting some of the colors together to get the feel for the project.  She was kind, as always.  She was encouraging, she was, well, Pris.  I whined a little with every loop for the first couple of hours.  Then I hit my stride and feel like I have been dealing with bright colors all along.  I even drew in the horse on the lady's left side.  It was not in the original project.

This is what I learned from this project…..all from Pris' words of wisdom.  Your eye still needs a soft place to land, so the grayish color that looks like the marble horse and is in various places thru out the rug, serves that need.  The soft burgundy color to the left of the lady's hair is also a soft place to land, as is the pinky tan tone of her flesh that is also used thru out the rug.  The balancing act,
using these colors, as well as the black, in  a variety
of places, makes the wild color easier to accept, at
least to someone with my palette preferences.  At the end, I even added in some neon colors, there is a pink, green, and orange all high chroma colors, that I used in very small portions.  They worked….but just in very small amounts.

To the right of the lady is a plant with leaves, that I am very tickled with.  Since I finished this up at Christmas time, it gave me one of those secret pleasures to make the plant look like a string of Christmas lights.  We rug hookers have these moments, don't we.  Just a little somethin' something' that is our little private joke.  I put these little things in many of my rugs.  Ah, simple mind, simple pleasures.

That is all for now.  I am going to start a new project this week and I think it will have a nice big black horse in it.  I need to regain my rug hooking equilibrium.  But I must admit, I enjoyed this rug.  Thank you Pris for gently nudging me in this direction.  It was a good experience and I learned a lot from it.

It is almost time to wish you Happy New Year, dear blogger friends.  I think I will wait, I may have another blog up my sleeve before the New Year.

Don't forget, first Saturday hooking is this Saturday, the 4th.  We will also be hooking on Friday afternoon as always.  Join us, it will be a fun time.


Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Merry Christmas to All

Merry Christmas blog followers.  I am sorry that I have not been blogging in the last week or so, but you know how busy this time of year can get.

Leah's theatre group, Theatre Arts for Kids, in Lincoln, NE performed ANNIE last weekend.
You can see Mij pictured with 3 orphans in the top photo.  I am proud to say that Mij has really embraced the acting experience.  She used to be a little nervous about the lights and crowd.  This time, she sauntered out on stage, gave it a stretch like she had been taking a little nap, glanced at the audience, and sauntered off.
She was perfect and her human Nana could not have been more proud.

Speaking of proud, we had our youth choir 20 year Christmas concert reunion on Sunday night.  Former members of The Waterloo Youth Choir joined my current voice students, and invited summer theatre kids to perform this Christmas concert.  There were 5 rehearsal opportunities, but they were only required to make it to 2 rehearsals.
Sunday afternoon we all met for 2 hours before the concert.  It was the first time all the performers had been in the room at the same time.  This stellar group of 33 wonderful singers pulled it off without a hitch, including 2 chime choir pieces.  I directed with tears in my eyes for much of the concert, especially when they sang the song I wrote for them 20 years ago
"As Long As Children Sing".  I noticed there were some teary eyed singers as well.  We did this to honor the memory of my long time friend and choir assistant, Mary Jo Harlow.  Mary Jo passed away this summer.  This was the first time since it's beginning in 1992 that Mary Jo was not present for a concert.   Actually, I am fairly certain she made it for the show.

Finally, what would a blog be without a report on the Poodle puppster.  He is 5 and a 1/2 weeks old now and gets to come home with me in 2 short weeks.  I have toys and crates and blankets and collars and leashes and books galore, all preparing me for his arrival.  He is the guy on the left with the green collar.  His sister is on the right.  She is going to stay for potential breeding purposes.  The big news is, Jean Miller, owner of Solo Standards has assured me these little guys are not going to turn silver as previously expected.  She think Tundra (my little guy) will eventually turn blue, sort of a steely grey color.  That will be perfect, since I intended to name him 'Blue'.  If he stays black, I will have to have a back-up plan for his name.  I read online, that a blue poodle will have slight brown overcasting on his coat until he changes to blue.  You will also be able to tell on the face when you clip them at 8-10 weeks, if their clipped hair color is lighter than their body color.  If so……blue it is.
We will have to wait to see.

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to Everyone,

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Mij is Stylin'

Our Christmas Open House was great fun.  We had a terrific turn out and a really enjoyable day.  Thanks to all who attended and to Carl who made us lunch.  Congratulations to Karen Flatley, the winner of the $50 GIFT CERTIFICATE.

Here is a news flash for you.  I just got word from Beeline that their cutter and blade prices are going up as of January 10th.  If you need a Beeline cutter or blades in different sizes, now is the time to buy.  I have a long arm cutter in stock at the old price and long arm blades of all sizes.  Contact me for availability if you have been considering the purchase of a cutter or blade (cartridge) before the price hike.

And AHHHHHH…….Mij is modeling her new outer wear.  Of course she is pretty in her pink princess sweater, a natural for a dog named Her Mijesty.  I think the striped hoodie is just right for a more casual look that will keep the chill away on those brisk winter walks.

Leah contends Mij likes her jackets and sweaters, but who is surprised, the little cow dog turned fashionista never fails to amaze.  You go girl, you are lookin' two snap.   (I fear that was a terribly out-dated attempt at 'cool' jargon)

I wish to apologize for fewer blogs of late.  My computer connection has been disturbed and it has not been reaching the house since we messed with the phone connection during the addition construction.  But….it is working tonight, so HOORAY!  I may be back to my regular blogging schedule.

Good night to all.


Friday, December 6, 2013

Addition Full for Open House

As you can see, my painting is done, the fire marshal has been here and the addition is FULL for the CHRISTMAS OPEN HOUSE tomorrow.  We will be hooking from 10-5 and are all welcome to join us.  Carl will make us lunch and a good time will be had by all.  Make a purchase tomorrow and put your name in the drawing for a $50 gift certificate!

There is so much new in the store it is hard to  describe it all.  There is a beautiful 8ft solid walnut harvest table, a 1860 museum quality mammy bench, complete with original black paint and gold stenciling.  There are wonderful store boxes with great labels for biscuits, spices etc.  There is an adorable possum belly kitchen cabinet and a doll size kitchen table and chest of drawers. All so cute!

Over 100 patterns have been marked down 20%, an unheard of event here at the store, but all part of our grand opening for the addition.  If you get to come visit the store, PLEASE admire my newly painted floor thru out the store.  It took me all week, moving a section of furniture, painting the floor, moving it back and on to another section. It looks pretty good if I do say so myself. I don't intend to repaint it in my lifetime, so please enjoy and admire it NOW!

Oooooh, and my blog would not be complete without mention of the little poodle puppster that is now 3 weeks old.  I get to pick him up in just 4 more weeks and I can't wait.   The 5 pups in the litter have opened their eyes and are exploring their world.  They are all adorable, but I think mine might be just the most handsome and intelligent of them all.  I won't know his name for sure, until I see him.  But, because he is probably going to be a blue/black or silver Standard Poodle, I am thinking of Blue or Remington Blue.  If I name him Remington I could call him Remi.  Carl suggested Charlie, Donna Hrkman likes Smokey.  I am open to suggestions if any of you are inspired with a name for this little adorableness.

All for now,