Thursday, November 29, 2012

Jammies for Jimmy's -Helping the Homeless-a GOOD deal for you and them

I just read an article about a policeman who bought clean socks and boots for a homeless man. This reminded me of a charity thing I have done for years now. I raise money during the year and at this time of year and buy pajamas for our local homeless mission here. The reason why is because when a homeless many goes there to spend the night, they must shower, change into pajamas before bed. Their clothing is taken and volunteers go in and wash, mend, fix or replace their clothing if need be. We had a minister friend who went in for a weekend sort of like a secret shopper to live among the homeless and then he did a series of lovely sermons on how they are just like us and how we could easily be homeless except for God's gifts to us. He also mentioned that they gave him mismatched pajamas that were too small and one of the pieces had a leopard skin print with tools on it. He said it was very humbling to have the homeless laugh when they saw him and how ridiculous he looked. I felt like it was a tap on my shoulder and I have gotten pajamas ever since at this time of year. I do not have that much money saved up this year and so I am offering this month to sell my story quilt book "Out of the Box" for $15. plus shipping to you. The book is normally $30. I pay half of that wholesale. I would love to be able to buy a good number of pj's for them as it is so cold and wet outdoors. I am thankful I do not have to live outside aren't you? By selling the book for half would be a good way for me to get more money for more pajamas. If you are interested in this book and doing story quilts (tell the world about YOU and who or what you love) you may order it through It will say the charge is $29.99 plus shipping but really since I fill the orders, it will be $15. And please, if you know someone else who might like this book for half price in December, please tell them. That would mean more pj's and warm souls. Merry Christmas friends, If you have a warm house, food in your cupboards, a warm bed, give thanks for your many blessings. We are so very lucky, Love- Mary Lou NOTE- I WOULD HAPPLIY TAKE PAJAMAS-size large or Xlarge is what they need- sent to 1521. N Argonne #276, Spokane Valley,WA 99212-2555. God Bless you! Get some kleenex and watch this- the homeless are just like you and I but a little down on their luck...

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Cancer Free-It's a Great Day!

Just wanted to say "it is a wonderful day". My husband was pronounced cancer free after his surgery. He will have to be checked next year every three months but we are convinced your many prayers and good wishes gave him the best prgnosis ever. Thank you friends sincerely for your lovely notes and prayers and good wishes. We both felt so fortunate to be prayed for. :0) This is going to be a lovely holiday for our family. I am so thankful for many many things, especially YOU! Mary Lou

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

A Great Time of Year to Plan a Christmas or Hannakuh Quilt and to be Creative + a great Recipe

I always did like things that John Lennon said although saying you are more popular than Jesus wasn't so smart.
I love this figure with a little head and a bigger body...I am experimenting with this and offer this as a challenge for fun to YOU!
BOYFRIEND BARS-YUMMY THIS TIME OF YEAR! 2 cups flour 1/4 teasp baking soda 1/4 teasp salt 2/3 cup butter, softened 2 cups packed dark brown sugar 2 extra large eggs, 2 teaspoons real vanilla extract 1 & 1/4 cups chopped peanuts 1 & 1/2 cups semisweet chocolate chips, divided 1/2 cup butterscotch chips 1/2 cup chopped pecans 1/2 cup coconut flakes Instructions Preheat oven to 350°. Grease a 9-inch square baking pan. Line with parchment paper. Whisk together flour, baking soda, and salt. Set aside. Beat butter until light and fluffy. Add brown sugar and continue beating until creamy. Add eggs, one at a time, mixing well after each addition. Mix in vanilla. Gradually add flour mixture, mixing until almost blended. Stir in peanuts and 1 cup chocolate chips. Transfer dough to prepared pan and spread evenly. Sprinkle top with remaining chocolate chips, butterscotch chips, pecans, and coconut. Bake for 30-35 minutes, or until edges are golden and topping is bubbly and lightly browned. Cool completely in pan before cutting into squares. ---------------- For those wondering my husband is doing OK and still have his catheter he is carrying around...a nuisance. He did have it in a grocery bag and my daughter in law kidded him so he took a bag I got from a shop in Hawaii that has a piunk bow on it...I am not sure which is better for a man....He is eating now and had his favorite "Frosted Flakes" which I normally never buy. We go to the Dr. tomorrow to get the cathetar out and back to the other Dr. next week to find out if the cancer spread. We are expecting good news...always. Thank you to so many of you who prayed for us...we felt it!

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Happy Thanksgiving Friends....

Today is a beautiful Thanksgiving. I am home alone and waiting to see if they will let my husband come home today. I have had a nice quiet morning and have been thinking about my many blessings and how blessed we all are here with a home, food, friends, warm clothes and so many other blessings. My daughter Shelbi brought over an apple pie and I have two turkey tv dinners in the freezer in case Mark does get to come home. I am thankful for you and that I have a chance to write two blogs to share what I am working on, what I am thinking and where I am in the world. I hope you have a wonderful day even if you are in another country. It is good to always count your blessings because then, you have many more waiting to come into your life. This is the secret many people miss. Have a wonderful day.

Monday, November 19, 2012

I am Thankful for you, My Many Blessings and Story update edit.

I just had professional photos taken of three quilts. It is so much better when you have someone take them with proper light etc., and Bruce Andre does an excellent job. I am lucky because he is close to where I live. So I have shown photos of this quilt before but it is better to show professional ones. This is a story of when my Father pointed to a kid one day who had a whirleygig hat on. He said "see that kids over there?" "They motorized those things and next summer, you, your Mom and your Brother Danny and I will fly to South Dakota and Wyoming to visit the relatives. Now I never forgot that and I used to think it was going to happen. Instead we were prisoners in a car for two days and hours of my brother and I trying to get more room in the back seat. But in the end there were lots of memories and I have some of them in the quilt. I actually have stitched in new things too and will keep doing that as I remember more. I had great memories with cousins and aunts and uncles and Grandma Donahue. This is such a nice way to remember things you did as a kid and to include those memories you love.
This small image is of my Brother Danny and his teddy bear....
I mentioned my Asilomar quilt earlier and I think this photo that Bruce did is so much better than I could have done. Here you see all of the delightful things I LOVE about Pacific Grove California where Empty Spools takes place. I have put many restaurants and shops that are a MUST see when you go there. I have "Lotto House" on one of the houses because I would love to win the lottos and be able to move there. Who wouldn't? The smells, the sights, the things to do, the ocean, the tastes, the plants, the animals and the people who are wonderful, all in one place! If you haven't had the chance to visit there, I suggest you will love it. On another note, my husband Mark goes into the hospital for cancer surgery tomorrow. I would like anyone who prays or sends good thoughts to please think of us this week. We are hoping to go home on Thanksgiving. I have my TV dinner (turkey) all ready. :0) Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday and I am hoping that you have a great day with people you are about and count your many blessings that have been sent your way and you can think of that day. We are blessed to have a home, food, warmth, loved ones, clothing and many things that others in the world do not have. I am thankful for YOU and thank you for coming to my blog sight today. Thank you sincerely---------------------------------------------------------------------- The surgery is over and my husband is alert and happy to be alive---he had a robotoic surgery (see info on Google "Divinchi robot")- my little fhour year old Grandson asked the name of the robot (you can imagine what he pictures in his mind. When the anastesiologist was in the room his phone rang and he said "Hi Shawn" and my Grandson looked at me and said that must be the robot calling him." Made me laugh I thought it was so cute. I never thought I would ever see my husband in the hospital ever and this made him look much more fragile. I miss him here tonight and am so happy he is feeling so good. We go in next week to see what gives with his lymph nodes and we will keep having them checked to make sure the cancer did not spread. My kids and two of my Grandkids were there when he woke up....very sweet. This Thanksgiving we have even more to be thankful for and I am very thankful for those of you who prayed for us....Hope you Thanksgiving in the US is great and if you aren't here, that your weekend blesses you and that all of us can count our many blessings. Much Love, Mary Lou

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Things to Make you LAUGH and Inspire Invention and Creativity-Let Your Mind Wander and have FUN

I thought it would be fun to have something to smile about this week. :0)
My husband, my son and I watch the Grandkids play hockey while my son in law who played professional hockey
Just wanted to show how you can take a simple print of the season and add colorful fabric and make something quite good.
I admire Linda Peterson's color style because she always uses different colors and they are awesome...
Wouldn't this make a beautiful Fall quilt?
This is the other Mary Lou and her Flower Power quilt
I love this because it reminds me of those English licorice mixes my Mom used to buy
My Mom and I on our last Thanksgiving together...I am thankful for her
Plaid cat I worked on for my last book....who says "cat's can be plaid?"

Saturday, November 10, 2012

GIVE THANKS (you aren't a turkey) and FOR COLOR!

I often talk about the value of cheddar and how oveerlooked it is when making a quilt. Cheddar is the complement to any blue, any purple and any teal or turquoise....add some value as in lighter or darker and you have a winner...look at how pretty these fabrics work with one another.
Imagine a whole leaf quilt made of greens and teals and blacks and cheddars...beautiful!
This iws a fun quilt that makes you smile but also has great color and personality. Hope this inspired you! I love teaching Autumn quilts because the colors are so beautiful and varied....

Thursday, November 08, 2012

Haters, This is For YOU....For Everyone Else, Thanks For the Fun and the Friendship

NOTE- I am overwhelmed at the kindness of my readers, friends and students for their lovely posts on my behalf...I am sincerely so thankful for each of you who took time to write me. I think this whole thing hit me at a vulnerable time in my life and I reacted more than I normally would have. I usually laugh off people like this knowing they are shallow and need something in their own lives. Thank you again sincerely for being so loving to me.
This week I got a negative comment and I want to share it here and address it. I am doing it two fold reasons. I can tell the person is negative and critical and anyone who comes to someone's blog and writes such a trite and nasty note attacking someone's personality first and then her art needs to get psychiatric help. This person wrote this to me... "You are silly and immature and your quilts were cute ten years ago but are so predictible now and it is so predictible you need to grow up you (sic) style. ANNON. (Naturally this person did not sign it) Now in fairness I want to say that I am not NOT silly and I am not immature and my quilts are NOT cute first of all. I am a happy andI like to share things that make others happy too. I put my hands in God's and know that my life can continue to be happy because He loves me, my family loves me and my many friends love me too. This is all because I love them. My quilts are folk art that tell about MY life and the life around me. Like them or not I have my own style which people recognize and that is a nice accomplishment. I approach quilting from a happy positive approach and I use art principles (I studied in school) and they have done well by me and my students also. I am leaving a legacy of stories, feelings and time lines in my work. I don't know anyone who would waste time writing something that is only meant to hurt.
Sister Mary Turnbow a professor at Gonzaga University who was one of my mentors said "do not worry about someone who asks "how you feel" when doing your art. Your art should speak for itself and if they do not recognize this, then it is them and not you. I want to write this because I want others to remember this when they do quilts or paintings or anything from their soul. We are here for such a short time and we have so many good things to share. Don't be a hater. Be a kind loving person who is a cheerleader instead.
And for those of you who have written me so many nice things, including praying for my husband who is having cancer surgery on the 20th, I am thankful for YOU daily and God knows I pray for YOUR many blessings and the idea that you enjoy building up, being creative, sharing and bringing happiness to those that really need it. This is Thankful MONTH and I am happy for all of you who have been so great and supportive.