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Monday, November 30, 2009

Counting down to Christmas!

Just sippin on a venti frap. I guess Starbucks missed me this past week b/c I ordered a grande! Gotta love when that happens (it's the small things that make me happy)! I cannot believe tomorrow is DECEMBER, and we'll soon be unmounting our deer in the front yard, AGAIN! It seems like just yesterday... Every year we say we are going to rig up an alarm or something for "whoever" mounts them on top of each other (we have our suspicions!!) I still have scarecrows on the front porch so we've got work to do! Hopefully we'll drag it all down from the attic in the next day or two.
We got back around 5:00 last night from a Tues-Sun vacation in Perdido, FL. Thanksgiving at the beach has been our tradition since Browder was just a tot! It is SO beautiful and relaxing down there. I love it! 6am shopping Friday at the outlets and lots of yummy food! Glad to be home, but it was a great trip! We played lots of Go Fish and Bingo and here is a pic of me & B at The Track in Gulf Shores. All 14 of us went Saturday for a fun day of gocart racing. I mostly took pictures, but did take a spin just before we left! Oh, I also bought and read Twilight while down at the beach - I'm DYING to rent the movie and watch it, then get New Moon and read and watch it. Browder asked me "what are you doing?" as I sat down to start reading. I don't think he's ever seen me sit down to read a book! Part of me kept saying "this is so dumb!! VAMPIRES?", but the other part of me COULD NOT put the book down! I read it in less than 3 days!

I think I've decided to return to work tomorrow. I have to get my picture order finalized today from my photo session a few weeks ago, as well as work on my Christmas card. I may do a couple of samples for Applique Cafe and return to work tomorrow afternoon! I'm so anxious to get back (really!). I don't want to be so swamped that I can't think straight, but enjoy a steady work load and am looking forward to doin' some sewin'! I went to Hancocks today and got some brown chenille, so I'm trying to figure out what to do with it. They also had hot pink (among other colors) which I may go back and get!

On a sad note, tonight and tomorrow morning we will be celebrating the life of a very special little friend! Before leaving the beach yesterday we got word that our friends' 3 1/2 yr old daughter had passed away Saturday night! Here is part of her sweet obituary "The Lord gave Riley an extremely heavy burden to bear and she touched so many lives and taught us so much with her weathering of the storm. For a young girl who could not speak or show emotion, she caused tongues to wag and waves of feeling. She is now walking, dancing and smiling for the first time and for that we are glad but are extremely sad for us who are left behind." She was a very special little girl and while she will be missed, what a blessing she was to everyone who knew her! We MUST rejoice in knowing she is with Jesus doing all the things she couldn't do here on earth! Please pray for her sweet family!!

Monday, November 23, 2009


I finished my last 4 items today, and have been able to do about 5 shirts for G & Sissy! It's so great to be able to "do" a shirt by request for your 3 1/2 yr old!! He opted for a monkey! He also has a request for a giraffe and about half the other designs on my blog. He has about 60 t-shirts in his closet including B's hand me downs!! For some reason I keep buying blank shirts, plus he gets a lot of the AC sample shirts!
This was not on Mallory's shirt, but as you all know I love the raggy designs from EB! The blue stitch is really a teal blue but looks a little bright in this picture.
And here is a circle patch with the Cheri ( "t" inside. Very simple and cute! Again, not the best picture, but you get the point! Cheri is a GREAT font and costs $3.00!
Today we met Jeff for lunch at Costco and Mama got a new camera! I've unpacked it, but have not gotten in to the manual or anything and will hopefully read up on it over the next few days. I also plan to take a class - it's a Canon Rebel xsi SLR camera. Fancy compared to what I had, so I have a lot to learn!!
I have a few more things to do, then I'll be shutting down my sewing room til next week! I think I already have about 25 things lined up to do, so next week is pretty much maxed out! Please e-mail me if you have stuff you'd like me to do! I'll take so much until I feel I won't be able to do anymore in decent time before Christmas. I'd also like to enjoy the Holidays and not feel stressed with too much work! So, I will only take on so much work before Christmas! E-mail me with any questions!
Happy Thanksgiving!!

Saturday, November 21, 2009

TEN, 10, DIEZ...

Down to TEN!! Jeff has folded about 8 loads of clothes and tended to the kids all day for me! He is now preparing dinner. Not sure if I'm stopping for the evening or knocking out a couple more? It's only 7:00...

Down to 21!!

I'm down to my last 21 pre-Thanksgiving items!! If humanly possible, I will finish these today and tomorrow! Jeff is really helping out and letting the kids crawl all over him (instead of me) while I sew. We took a mexican lunch break (surprise surprise) and got me a Starbucks (peppermint mocha frap is my latest and greatest addiction). He took Browder on an errand while the little ones are napping and we are staying in tonight, so sew sew sew for me. Church tomorrow, then sew sew sew til I'm done! I'm not sure what Monday will bring? I may do a few things for MY sweet children, or I may shut 'er down and embroidery-detox til after Thanksgiving! Back to work...

Friday, November 20, 2009

Example #1

OK, here is example #1 of the type e-mails I get:

"Please reactivate my download link. I cannot believe you only give 24 hours to download."

How about "Oops I missed my download window, can you please resend it?" Then I reply, "Sure! Here it is!"

TGIF and Happy Thanksgiving

Here is the dump truck in all cord on a blue gingham patch. It's the EB rounded square patch and I just elongated it just a tad with my Sew What Pro so the truck would fit. I thought this was cute! I went to Kudzu Quilt today and got more red fine wale cord and also a dark green and a hot pink. They have it in LOTS of colors!

My machine is rockin... I'm down to 29 items and hope to knock these out! Technically a few of them COULD wait til after Thanksgiving, but since I already have a stack accumulating, I'd like to completely finish by Tuesday! That way I can really enjoy 6 days off before I start over on Christmas stuff.
We added the simple dog and gingerbread man to and the Etsy store last night. We've got a few more things in the works before Thanksgiving and then hopefully some new stuff after Thanksgiving. Even Jeff has some ideas!!
I've gotten soooo many e-mails and comments about my ridiculous fit-of-rage blog post the other day! I think my fellow peeps can relate to the stress involved with embroidery and all emphasized that I can't let a few downers mess with my mojo. So, negative thoughts be gone and hopefully I won't receive any more rude e-mails! And hopefully I haven't totally scared some people off! :) I'm really not an angry person, really (or crazy)!
I've been camera shopping today! I asked for recommendations on Facebook and most recommended the Canon Rebel. It's quite the step up from what I had, but can luckily be written off as a business expense and from what I have seen, takes great fast pics! The best deal is at Costco and I can pay a little and take a class at a local camera store. I'm excited!! Santa is bringing me lots of goodies this year (before Christmas)!!
Back to work...

Monday, November 16, 2009


I have re-read my post from earlier and WOW, I was a little fired up!! I apologize for my brutal honesty!! Thanks to those who have commented and e-mailed me with words of encouragement!! I really appreciate it! Embroidery has become part of my life and I feel like I spend so much time with it (-live and breathe it some days) - blogging, designing, monogramming, etc., not to mention the many many e-mails I get and answer each and every day! I shouldn't let the sour e-mail here & there get me down!! It is a very busy and stressful time of year so bear, or is it bare?, with me.
Today Rachel at asked if I would do a shirt to showcase her new ornament alphabet. Of course!! She had a vision of the shirt so I just fulfilled her vision and it turned out super cute! She sent me JOY and also Mallory's initials MRG to do, but I liked the JOY idea! I think she is working on a newsletter so this alphabet should be available later tonight or in the next day or two! I did it on a size 3T long sleeve Rabbit Skins shirt, with ric rac and bows added. If you are interested in this sample Christmas shirt e-mail me at Otherwise, Mallory will be wearin' this one to school come December 1st!

Today I took B to the Dr. His appt. was at 4:15 and I left the Drs office at 6:00. Winn Dixie for an Rx and got home at 6:30. He's still having wheezing issues along with a little respiratory infection, so antibiotics will hopefully knock it out! It has been a long long day! Oh, the kitchen DID get painted and I will try to post pics later this week! They started at 7am and walked out the door at 9:30. It looks great!!

Embroidery Etiquette

Aren't most embroidery people stay at home moms who are sewing for their kids? They may do a thing here or there for friends and family! Or they are like me, and embroidery is almost a full time job! I am a mother of 3 children, ages 6 1/2 (boy-Kindergarten), 3 1/2 (boy) and 21 mos (girl). I have a husband too, am active in my church, play in a bunko group once a month, am in a wonderful Titus 2 monthly bible study with some amazing women, etc etc etcetera... For the most part though, lately I should say, I do embroidery every waking moment that I can! Naptime, late at night (I've been known to stay up til 2:15!!), sometimes even early in the morning before school. My kids only go to school for a few hours on Monday, Wednesday and Friday so my time is very limited and on those mornings I'm usually trying to run what errands I can without 3 kids in tow!
I run this blog and keep up with a Yahoo group (barely), not to mention our website and our designs are also sold on etsy at
OK, Applique Cafe - we painstakingly installed "instant download" ourselves and for the most part it runs smoothly! When you purchase an applique design, you are supposed to be directed to a page which allows you to download your designs INSTANTLY! Hence the term, instant download. In addition to this, an e-mail is generated and automatically sent to the e-mail address you enter upon checkout (so be careful when typing in that e-mail address!). This e-mail ALSO contains download links for you to INSTANTLY download your designs right then and there! For security purposes, the downloads expire after 24 hours! That should be plenty of time to download that new design and get to work on that t-shirt!! If for some reason you miss the download page, you should receive the download e-mail. If for some reason you don't get it, first check your SPAM folder, and then e-mail me and I'm happy to resend it! My e-mail domain has been known to have been flagged for spam, so it happens! Always check your spam folder first!!
Etsy - unfortunately Etsy is not set up with instant download, and therefore I check my e-mail about 25 times a day and as soon as I receive an order from Etsy, I e-mail the design(s) out. It is usually within minutes, sometimes hours if I'm away from my house! Again, if you do not receive the e-mail, check your spam folder and then e-mail or conversation me! I'm so happy to send the e-mail again! Regarding Etsy, I find that a lot of the time, there is one e-mail address tied to Etsy, and a totally different e-mail address tied to Paypal. I always click on the Etsy e-mail address and send the design there!
Designs - I have been doing embroidery for several years and sampled designs for Embroidery Boutique over this past year. My husband & I bought the software and started digitizing ourselves! It's a lot of fun and having done embroidery work for people for several years, I feel like I have some knowledge of what works, what looks cute, what is easy, how to cut steps, etc. We study our designs and test each one before it is listed! If there is an error, a step out of line, or if something doesn't look right we fix it, sample it again and then list it! Also, we sell TONS of designs both on Etsy and at Applique Cafe. If there is a problem with a design, we would learn of it very quickly I have a feeling!
Where am I going with this, you ask? Here is where I am going and I do not mean to offend ANYONE, but if I get one more rude, snippy, condesending e-mail about an applique design I am going to SCREAM!! a) If you don't think that you received your applique design, PLEASE check your spam folder and shoot me an e-mail! I will re-send designs out all day long if I need to! b) If you sew a design and your machine jumps and it does not stitch right, shoot me an e-mail and I will be glad to research the design and try to help you figure out what the problem might be! We digitize on one computer, then e-mail it to another computer to test and e-mail out to Etsy customers, it's uploaded to part of our website for instant download, e-mailed to you, you save it on your computer, then transfer it to your machine, etc etc etc. These are DIGITAL files!! We're working with COMPUTERS and COMPUTERIZED sewing machines! ANYTHING CAN GO WRONG in all that transferring!! If your design isn't sewing correctly, please please please do not e-mail me and tell me how poorly my design was digitized! PLEASE e-mail me and explain what is happening and include a picture if at all possible! I can count how many times this has happened on one hand, but when it happens I do want to know about it!
I've just had an incident where someone purchased a design off Etsy Saturday. I e-mailed the design to the customer on Saturday as soon as I received the order. Sunday I get a conversation message saying she had not received the design. I sent her 2 conversation messages back explaining that I had sent it, and even told her the exact times I e-mailed them, which e-mail it went to, told her to check her spam folder, etc. I sent the design again at this point and got another message today saying she still didn't have it and that "it would have been nice to have known I tried to send it". I thought e-mailing it twice and two messages on Etsy with each exact time (to the minute) that I e-mailed it was "letting her know I tried to send it". I can ONLY e-mail the design out to the e-mail address listed! If I don't get a return to sender e-mail, then I can only assume the customer received the e-mail!
I've also been told that a design I sold was "digitized poorly", that it had to be given to a "professional" to do (like I am an amateur) and that this customer had wasted $23 on the design and t-shirts and that she just "hoped" the other designs she bought worked. No picture was sent, the explanation of what went wrong was vague and I have sold tons of the same design without a single complaint. I e-mailed asking for more info and a photo so I could SEE what went wrong and got no response.
These are just a few examples of e-mails I've gotten from people and I just ask that people take a deep breath before they e-mail! Embroidery is tedious work!! It's time consuming and nervewracking!! I get frustrated too but would never send some of the e-mails I receive to a fellow embroidery mom, or grandma!! I feel like some of these people think I am laying on the couch all day with my feet propped up watching Days of Our Lives! It just ain't so!!!
This is just something I had to explain and get off my chest!! There is nothing more frustrating than a rude e-mail given all the time and energy I give to EMBROIDERY!! Please be considerate of others, especially fellow embroidery people!! THANKS!!

My "G"

Here is my G ready for school this morning! He got up at 6:30!! Painters were here at 6:45 to stand out in the street til 7:00 (??) and are now painting my yellow kitchen! YEAH!! I will post before and after pics later today! Last night I sampled a new design on a shirt for G. He has had these blue gingham pants with nothing to match them, so I figured why not make the shirt to match! I trimmed the "lab" (aka simple dog) in brown. Simple is my motto, so this may be my new favorite design! I have another one to sample sometime today, so hopefully we'll have at least 2 new designs up this week!

I'm about to take these little ones to early room at school - to keep them out of the kitchen and paint and maybe I can get quite a bit done this morning as I listen to the painters (there are 4 of them) talk football!! They reak (msp) of smoke so later I'll be fumigating my kitchen!!!

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Happy Saturday!!

What a pretty day! I spent most of the morning outside with the kids. You know...they play, I pull weeds as big as Mallory in the back yard. We strolled up to the park, played in the driveway and even had lunch outside (on the driveway). B went to a friend's house and I bathed the little ones and put them down for nap. Jeff is on a golf trip and back tomorrow, so I've gotten very little work done! I did quite a bit Thursday after my successful sew-a-thon Wednesday, and did a few things yesterday, including a cute zebra print bag that I monogrammed perfectly. Or so I thought.... I left it on the machine after it was done and took the kids out to dinner. When I got back I took it off, only to realize part of the bag had gotten monogrammed that wasn't supposed to be monogrammed! And, it was a BIG monogram, so I used a fill stitch and basically had to cut the bag to even get my hoop off! (FROWN) I looked on the internet, but there isn't a single tag on this bag other than "made in China" so I have no clue where to find a replacement! I called it's owner and told her the bad news this morning. She told me where she THOUGHT it came from and is supposed to call me back. I guess Monday I will try a few stores and hopefully find a replacement! This, my friends, is when monogramming gets so frustrating!! Hopefully I can find one, and hopefully it won't cost me $50!!
I just took inventory of my work and here is where I stand:

Items to do before 11/24 = 53
Items lined up for after Thanksgiving = 21
Items I have to do, but no instructions yet = 19
Items for my children that I hope to do, maybe, if they are lucky = 8+

Monday, November 9, 2009

3 new designs...

This "Triangle Tree" was a special request. I'm not 100% happy with my photos ~ Jeff borrowed a camera from work so this was the best I could get! I'm adding these to shortly! I used lime flannel underneath my gingham for this one and tried to make it look more boy-ish than our other trees. It's all in what colors you use! Throw some pink in and a bow on top and you have a girly tree!
One more snowman patch! This one just the head of course. I like the scarf overlapping the patch! You could also skip the first 3 steps, aka patch part, and just have the snowman head - it is designed to work that way! I like these patches for the snowman in case you do it on a white shirt!
And lastly another special request ~ a Mardi Gras mask. I don't know much about Mardi Gras but evidently there aren't a ton of applique designs out there for it!?
Today I doubled up on my Starbucks and did 3 shirts, these 3 samples and 3 blankets! I also cleaned out my bathroom vanity, the puzzle cabinet and a few of the boys toys! It's amazing what cleaning out my closet has done for my OCD!! That and caffeine have kicked it in to high gear! Plus the lady who cleans for me is coming in the morning and we've secured the carpet cleaner for tomorrow night! Back to work...

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Successful Saturday!

I just finished the Peace ON EARTH shirt for a child and it is SO CUTE!! I used a Christmas plaid fabric with red flannel underneath, and ON EARTH actually in a hunter green (kid font) to match the plaid! I'll try to take a pic on Jeff's phone and post it tomorrow!
Jeff took the boys to the Auburn game today and I stayed home with Mallory! I got 6 shirts done and also cleaned out my closet. When I say I cleaned out my closet, I mean I took EVERYTHING OUT except for my boxed up wedding dress on the top shelf! Other than that it was empty and I vaccuumed it and then reloaded and organized! It took me a good 3 hours! I've been putting it off for weeks so it feels GREAT to check that one off my list! I also filled up 2 trash bags for Goodwill! YIPPEEEEE!!!! I also cleaned out my drawers and got rid of A LOT of huge ugly t-shirts that I sleep in! I kept a few, but had every Wynlakes member guest t-shirt since like 2005, and too many Jim Bishop Cabinets shirts to count! It was time for them to go!
Before Jeff left for the game... actually bright and early at 7:20 am, a painter came over to quote us on painting our kitchen. His quote was actually reasonable, so he's supposed to come back the week after next to PAINT MY KITCHEN!! YEAH!! We built this house in 2002 and the yellow kitchen is on my last nerve!! And tomorrow, Jeff is supposed to clean our carpet! We have a rug in our den that looks like American Lubefast has been changing oil on for the past 6 months. It is NASTY!! Checkin' off my list...
I have AT LEAST 2 shirts to do tomorrow afternoon. I sometimes take Sunday off but will do those 2 for sure! I hope to knock out a lot this week ~ not too much going on I don't think and hopefully a 6 hr sew-a-thon Wednesday when my MIL keeps my kids (who are out of school). We'll see!

Friday, November 6, 2009

Beautiful Friday!!

What a beautiful day! I have no pics to post today, as I posted earlier in the week I dropped my camera last Sun. night and my backup (aka my 1st digital camera ever) has been in the drawer so long it won't work either! So all I have is Jeff's Iphone which is in his pocket on hole #9 at Wynlakes. I can take pictures with my poor sad Razr phone, but have no clue how to get them OFF my phone. Momma needs an Iphone!! And and a new camera!!! And a new kitchen table!!! And my kitchen painted!!! And my carpet cleaned (Sunday that one will happen!)!!! Oh, And my closet cleaned out (another weekend project)!!!
I posted up top that I decided today to do a *limited* number of turkey shirts if anyone wants one! $14 with name (you provide the shirt). Just e-mail me. I do have some long sleeve white Rabbit Skin tees available too - sizes 3T, 4T and 5/6.
Wednesday I went by Peas in a Pod in Montgomery to check out their stuff and talk to the lady who owns it. Someone told me she welcomed outside embroidery work. Everything I saw looked great, and she does have bigger hoops than me. BUT, she also has to pay rent on her space by the popular Rave theater, so monograms are $10 and appliques range from $10-20 depending on the number of fabrics involved. So if you want a turkey with 6 fabrics, it's gonna cost you, whereas I suck it up and do it for $12. But, everything looked GREAT so if you are in Montgomery and can't wait for me, I recommend them!
Speaking of waiting for me, tomorrow I'm on the fence - go to the Auburn game with my family minus Mallory, or stay home and WORK!? I certainly could get a lot done, but would have to sacrifice a beautiful day in Auburn!! Wednesday my kids are out of school and are going to their Gigi's from 10:30-4:30, so I plan to have a sew-a-thon for sure. I would love nothing more than to knock most of my work out so I can do a decent amount for Christmas. I hate telling people 'no' and not accepting new work for weeks on end, but for my sanity it's the way things have to be for now!
No new fabric to report. A couple of new AC designs coming up. That's about it - back to work! Have a great weekend!!

Thursday, November 5, 2009

A few of our pictures...

I got a few pics from our photo session in Dothan Tuesday! These turned out so cute!! Mallory was on the go the whole time, so we'll see if any of the family ones turned out!
Here are "my boys"!!
And here, as you can see in the background, we were trying to get a shot of all of us. Mallory had other plans! Overall the kids were great considering we drove an hour and a half and Mallory had a 20 minute nap all day! There was little fussing and they cooperated pretty well - she was just BUSY!

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Pink Rudolph

I stole this picture from my friend Melia's blog ( down below). LOVE the Rudolph with a pink bow and a pink nose!!
For a few weeks I've been "preparing" to have family photos made down in Dothan by a friend of mine from college! We were going to do it last week, then it rained, so we postponed til today! I spent last night finalizing outfits, ironing and trying on outfits myself trying to decide what we would all wear. I wanted to go the brown route and overanalyzed my decisions TO DEATH! This morning I spent most of the morning doing laundry, fed the kids at 10:40 - had to time the morning perfectly so that we could basically all take baths and jump in the car by 12:30! We got there at 2:00 and finished at about 4:40, then headed to Conestoga Steakhouse to meet my parents and brother for dinner (y-u-m). Before we left M'gomery today I told Jeff, "WOW, this is quite the production!!" Now I know why we haven't done "family photos" since Browder was 2!!!! It is A LOT of work, but will be worth every minute of stress I'm sure! I'll be sure to post any sneak peaks I get!

If you are in the Dothan area,!!! Jennifer & I used to wait tables together at Brittany's in Troy, which is now a chinese restaurant!!

Monday, November 2, 2009

Happy November!

This shirt was a special request for someone to match some pants. The LOVE font was used for the initial "L". I thought it was pretty cute!
So.... I did it on this Little English green cord overall for Mallory! It had a monogram on it and I removed what I could, then decided to cover it up. The photo quality isn't great - I dropped my camera last night and it's now dead, so I took this w/ Jeff's Iphone and e-mailed it to myself! The greens really match and it looks really cute! I used a patchwork fabric for the bottom circle!
Trucking along on my orders! I still have SO MUCH to do over the next few weeks! Hopefully I'll get it done so I can enjoy Thanksgiving and then get ready for a few weeks worth of work before Christmas. I've added several blogs on my blog list of people who do embroidery too. And if you are in Montgomery, I was told to call Charlotte at Pea In A Pod and they would take outside work too! I haven't been by or called yet so I'm not sure how much they charge or what they offer! Will try to get by there this week!