The Busiest Time of the Year

Tis the season  to be busy, right? This week has been packed with a variety of things. Much of my time has been centered around my Etsy shop. I have had a nice number of sales so that means packaging and shipping items. I greatly enjoy this, so it’s all good.  I decided to start including a little freebie with my orders this year. I made a bundle of little book marks with cute buttons, large paperclips and a bit of hot glue. What do you think?

I get a kick out of getting the shipments ready. For one thing, check out the cute dispenser for the twine that I use to wrap orders. 🙂 I love it – I received it as a birthday gift from my father-in-law a couple of years ago. Secondly, I love helping my customers.  This week I did a custom Chemex cozy for a customer who wanted rooster fabric. Love the colors in this piece of material.

Besides Etsy work, I have done about 75% of our Christmas shopping.  I am feeling pretty good about my progress up to this point.  I have a strong hatred for shopping malls and have thus far avoided stepping foot in one. It remains to be seen if I can finish without hitting the mall but so far, it’s looking good! I also found a dress to wear to my son’s wedding in January. The wedding is in Toronto, Ontario so we will be trekking to Toronto in a few weeks.  As always, when they announced their engagement a year ago, it seemed like it would be such a long wait for the wedding. Then, suddenly, we are a few weeks out. Crazy the way time buzzes by.

Truly, I have spent very little time in the sewing room this week. I did make a little fabric bucket for a gift.  I think I have mentioned that Julia joined 4-H this year. She wanted to learn about raising market hogs to show and sell at the county fair. It has been quite a project for her. She is committed though and has made time for the meetings and is learning all a girl needs to know about market swine!  Ray is reinforcing an existing pen on our property and Julia is helping. They have been setting posts and running wire fence.

I have been very impressed by her 4-H leader for the swine group.  Tracy puts in a lot of time with these kids and it will be even more once their piglets are born. (Julia should bring her piglets home in late March or very early April.) I wanted to give her a little gift for the holidays. I searched for Christmasy pig fabric and wouldn’t you know… there is such a thing! I wasn’t terribly surprised. I think there is fabric out there for everyone and every possible theme!

Aren’t these guys the silliest thing ever?  It cracks me up. I lined it with a vintage holiday print I had in my stash.

I made the bucket with two 11″ squares of fabric for both lining and outer fabric. I fused a thick fusible interfacing to the outer fabric before sewing this up.  Once I fused the interfacing, I sewed the perimeter of the two outer fabric squares, leaving one long side open.  Next I boxed the corners. Then I repeated the process with the lining. However with the lining, I left an opening of three inches on the bottom seam so I could turn it right side out when I sewed it together.  Nest the outer box inside the lining box, with fabric right sides together and stitch around the top. Turn right sides out and press. Hand or machine sew the opening in the lining.  Fold the top over to the outside and you’re done!  If you want pictures or more detail, this tutorial from Dear Handmade Life is quite good.  The size of the bucket in the tutorial is much bigger though.  Mine finished at 5 1/2″ square – so basically at 5 1/2″ wide, tall and deep. Perfect size to fill with a few treats. Perfect gift for any pig lover.  🙂

I have also been making blocks for the Sew Fresh Quilt Bee, hosted by Lorna of Sew Fresh Quilts. I have two finished but haven’t taken any photos yet. I’ll show them to you soon. They are very cute, improv log cabin blocks.

Ok, that is it for now.  I have to pick up Julia soon. She is in the midst of finals and has been studying like crazy.  She has a few more next week so she will likely have her nose in her Chemistry book all weekend.  Ray and I will drag her away to pick out a Christmas tree but other than that, I doubt very much that she will be doing much besides studying.  Have a wonderful weekend everyone.  Remember that my giveaway for Sew Mama Sew’s Giveaway day is open through Sunday evening, December 12th.  Pop over and enter.  Be sure and head over to Sew Mama Sew as well. There are so many fun bloggers participating in this and tons of great giveaways!

Finally, C&T Publishing is having another $5.00 blowout sale this weekend. Of note, they are offering adult coloring books for $5.00 – buy one get one free.  So, two gifts for $5.00 plus shipping???

My favorite of the books is one by Valori Wells. She designed the amazing elephant fabric that I made a whole cloth quilt from recently.  If you were as smitten with that fabric as I was, this might be fun for you! There are several nice books listed on sale this weekend.

(Note:  I am an affilliate of C&T publishing and will receive a stipend if you click through my site and order from them.)

23 thoughts on “The Busiest Time of the Year

    1. Bernie Post author

      Yay — glad you liked it Wendy. They are a fun and simple token to include when I am shipping something out. Enjoy the weekend! We are hoping to dash out between rain showers and get our Christmas tree. I have lots of the other decorations up but no tree yet. 🙂

      Reply
  1. Brenda Ackerman

    Good Morning Bernie! I adore your button bookmarks! You chose such pretty buttons that anyone receiving these are just going to be delighted! I also think your gift from your Father-In-Law is perfect and surely makes packaging much easier! Your Christmas Piggy fabric is so cute, I seriously want some…but have no idea who I would make something for with it. No one I know would be quite as tickled as I would be at receiving a fabric bowl with their cute hats and grins. Your daughter will just love it! I also think it is marvelous about her interest in 4-H; you do not hear enough about it now days and all of the benefits it does provide! Thank you so much for sharing everything, I really enjoy reading your posts. Hopefully, if all goes as I hope, I will be posting again daily soon! Have a fantastic creative day!

    Reply
    1. Bernie Post author

      Thanks Brenda! What a sweet comment. You are right – that piggie fabric wouldn’t appeal to just anyone! I was quite happy to find it as it works just perfectly for what I needed. I’m so glad you enjoy the blog – it is a lot of fun. Take care and have a great weekend!

      Reply
  2. Stephanie @Quilt'n Party

    Bernie, you had quite the busy week. I’m impressed you’ve made such progress on your shopping. Yay! Those piggies are pretty darn cute. I hope you continue to share Julia’s progress with the piggies. I was never in 4H but when I was young I was a volunteer for the National Western Stock Show here in Denver. I think agriculture experiences are a great learning experience for young people.

    Reply
    1. Bernie Post author

      Stephanie, I completely agree. Ag Science provides some great opportunities for the kids. I was surprised when Julia mentioned she wanted to try this but she is committed so (hopefully) it will be a good experience. I will share more as she progresses with it (not that piggies are terribly quilt related) 🙂 This weekend is supposed to be quite wet out so I doubt they will make any progress on the pig pen. It needs to be finished up by the end of February so there is time. Hope you have a lovely weekend!

      Reply
  3. Kate

    You have a lot going on right now, I’m so impressed you have managed to do so much of your shopping, I just started mine. Love those button bookmarks, clever.

    Reply
    1. Bernie Post author

      Hi Kate, I had to get some of the shopping done because I have to ship gifts and don’t want to leave it to the last minute. Once I got going, I was just in the zone. So, now to finish it up. Then I can just enjoy all of the fun parts – family time, baking, getting our tree. Hoping you have a wonderful holiday season with your family.

      Reply
  4. Angie in SoCal

    Cute bookmarks. I’m sure your buyers are going to love them. You have some very cute things in your shop. Consider a button for 2017 for your shop. I’d be happy to put it on my sidebar for all that yummy fabric you offer. Merry Christmas.

    Reply
    1. Bernie Post author

      Hi Angie, Making a button is on my to-do list. Thank you for the suggestion. I would love to chat further about it with you.
      I hope you have a wonderful Christmas too! Take care.

      Reply
    1. Bernie Post author

      Hi Kristi,
      Yep, those piggies make me smile. I was thrilled when I ordered the fabric. The Etsy seller wrote me and said I was buying the end of her bolt so I got lucky. It is such a silly print. I am really enjoying seeing your quilt lots on Instagram. Have a great weekend!

      Reply
  5. Val Reynolds

    Yes your bookmark are adorable!! So happy for you that your Etsy sales are good…as I never had much luck on Etsy. I miss my daughter’s 4H days…ENJOY!! Oh an that piggy catch all is soooo adorable! (PS: I do not care for malls either.)

    Reply
    1. Bernie Post author

      Val, Thanks a bunch! This is our first time working with a 4-H group. Julia wasn’t interested when she was younger. I am so impressed with the organization though and really like what their goals are. It is a little weird because she is on the older side joining this late but it works out. Usually the high school kids that are involved with Ag projects do it through FFA. But that doesn’t work for Julia since she is going to a high school/early college program and her schedule is nuts. Anyway, it is working out nicely.
      Looks like you have been having a fun, snowy week.

      Reply
  6. Linda

    Your “extras” are very cute! So neat that you enjoy the whole process of sales – you are a true customer service person – a rarity nowadays.
    It looks like your pig area is enclosed? Love your pig basket. I have a pig quilt planned for my husband. I found a cute pattern called Penny Pig by Bee in My Bonnet that I might use.
    Where do you get your live tree? Isn’t it funny that they are called “live trees” now? When I was growing up, they were just “Christmas trees”. We bought one at our local grocery store (Beans Jesse’s – weird name!), a few days before Christmas. The smell of those trees! Ah memories. 🙂
    Looking forward to seeing your blocks.
    Wow – Toronto! I hope you will post a pic of your dress. 🙂

    Reply
  7. Preeti

    Just now favorited your Etsy shop. May be I will buy something just so that I can get those cute button bookmarks. Hope you find some time to relax and enjoy the holidays amidst the craziness of packing and shipping. Any news on the grandbaby?

    Reply
    1. Bernie Post author

      Aw, that is so sweet. You don’t have to order anything – I would love to send you a bookmark. Email me your address and I will pop it in the mail. needleandfoot@gmail.com
      I am enjoying the holidays. Now that I am close to done with shopping the fun begins. We put up our tree yesterday and this afternoon I plan to wrap gifts and listen to Christmas music. 🙂

      Reply

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