Thursday, November 29, 2012

Frosty the Snowman Mug Rug Tutorial

There is only one day left to signup for my first-ever Winter Mug Rug Swap! It's going to be so much fun! So far we have over 120 people registered in 11 different countries! woo-hoo!  Thank you all for your interest.  To signup click HERE.

I will be emailing you in pairs with the contact info for your swap partner a few days after I get the final count of participants.  But I wanted to leave you with another tutorial I posted on how to make this Frosty the Snowman Mug Rug in hopes of providing some crafty inspiration for the swap.

I also provide you with the snowman applique I designed. Click HERE to download and print the snowman applique design.

For the full details on the swap click HERE to access my original post.

Here's the video tutorial on how to make it! Remember that if you're reading this in your email you'll need to click HERE to watch the video or open up the full post on my blog. 

Online Quilting Class

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Duckling & Garden Update

We've had a few nights of 30ยบ F weather here in North Central Florida but even with a light frost on the ground my cool weather lovin' crops still look gorgeous!  I get so excited to grow such a pretty little organic garden.  If you've been following my blog for a while you know that we are newbies to this farm life and that this is only my second Fall/Winter gardening season. So far, so good!

Jonathan's kale harvest for chips!
Surprisingly enough it hasn't been as much work as I anticipated. I'm sure it's a combination of at least a few things:

-Good soil! We planted buckwheat as a cover crop late this summer to add some more organic matter to the soil before we planted the fall garden. We are blessed to have purchased this property in what many locals consider the best soil around these parts. Jackpot!

- Mulch! We mulched all rows with local Bahia hay to keep the weeds down and help hold moisture in the ground. So far it works great! I haven't had problems with weeds from the hay sprouting up either and I only have to weed every 2-3 weeks. YAY!

- Compost and fish emulsion! This is all I use to fertilize my plants... and as you can see from the picture above the leafy greens L-O-V-E the nitrogen in the fish emulsion. 

I filmed a short video this past weekend to show you how big the ducklings are now and a quick walk around the veggie garden. Hope you enjoy!

Click HERE to watch the video or you can watch it below  if you are reading this post on my blog (instead of your email).

Daily Quilting Deals at

Friday, November 23, 2012

Black Friday Craftsy Sale!

Confession: I had no idea what "Black Friday" was until I was in law school. Growing up we didn't have money to do much shopping and I've never been a big spender so I guess I just wasn't paying attention to what everyone else was doing.

'Til this day I have never been to a Black Friday sale.  Something about crowds, long lines and spending money on stuff I don't need that easily keeps me home. But there are some Black Friday sales I will take advantage of from the comfort of my own home... the ones that are educational, affordable and allow me to learn new functional life skills. is running their Black Friday/Cyber Monday Holiday Sale right now!  It will only last until Monday, Nov. 26 at midnight so head over and see what new crafty online classes you want to try out or give as a gift to a loved one!

Click image to check out the sale!

If you don't yet know about classes definitely check them out! They have dozens of classes on an amazingly user-friendly platform where you can take any of their classes from home no matter where in the world you are!  Just to give you an idea of the variety of classes: sewing, quilting, couture garment making, knitting, crocheting, cake decorating, woodworking, paper crafts gardening and so many more!
Earlier this year I had the opportunity to star in my own Craftsy class and had a blast working with everyone on set!  My home decor sewing class is called: Sew Little: Nursery Design. It's not just for nursery decor, though.   The projects I teach can be made for any home or office. My class is on sale right now too!

Click for more details!
And if you're a complete newbie to Craftsy here are a few FREE classes for you to signup for so you can check out how the platform works. Trust me, it's awesome! 

Online Quilting Class

free modern buttercream cake decorating class at

Online Sewing Class

FREE Block of the Month class at


Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Winter Mug Rug Swap

I have participated in swaps in the past and have received some gorgeous works of art from swap partners all over the world. So, I think it's about time I host my own swap!

I want to keep it sweet and simple so here is the info:

Who: All crafty people!
What: Winter Mug Rug Swap
When: Deadline to signup: Nov. 30, 2012
            Deadline to ship mug rug to your partner: January 15, 2013
Where: All around the world! This swap is open to anyone in any country.
Why: Why not? Everyone loves a cute mug rug, right?

More important details:
1) Mug rug should measure at least 5" x 7"(13cm x 18cm). It can be bigger but not smaller, please!
2) You can interpret the winter theme any way you want. Be creative!

Please only sign up if you can meet this ship date- January 15, 2013.  There is nothing more upsetting than waiting around for your swap gift to arrive only to find out your partner never sent it! This has happened to me in the past and is very sad because you spend so much time making something beautiful for someone expecting to receive your own gift. PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE only sign up if you will follow through with your commitment to create a cute winter mug rug for your partner.  

Sign up for the swap will close on Nov. 30, 2012. After the sign up period is closed I will pair everyone up and you'll receive an email with more details on how to proceed. If you are under age please make sure you have your parent/guardian's permission to participate in this swap.

To sign up for the swap: Click on THIS LINK to fill out the sign up form.

In case you need a little inspiration and a few how-to tutorials on mug rugs check out my videos by clicking on the pictures below:
Frosty Mug Rug

Cupcake mug rug- no binding version

So.... what are you waiting for?! Click HERE and signup for the winter mug rug swap today!

Daily Quilting Deals at

Monday, November 12, 2012

Longarm Quilting- Using micro handles

Lately, I've been spending more time with Janoris, my longarm machine. I love being able to quilt my own quilts. I remember the days of taking my quilts to a longarmer way back when. I was a law school student and struggled to save up funds every time I needed a quilt quilted. Thank goodness those days are long gone!

Janoris, my longarm

I'm always experimenting with free motion quilting designs because my machine does not have a stitch regulator or any fancy computerized devices or programs and I've never done a pantograph before.  It's just me and a big industrial sewing machine getting all the quilting done at my own pace.... and I like it that way!

This week I've uploaded a longarming video for you showing why and how I use micro handles to do the more high density quilting designs especially when quilting in small spaces. I got my micro handles a few years ago from Leslie & Curt at Finishing Touches Quilting Studio. Curt makes the handles himself and they carry them for different midarm and longarm machines- Voyager 17, Bailey, Indigo, Juki, Nolting Fun Quilter, etc. Check them out for your midarm or longarming accessories & notions. She is an online quilting buddy of mine who recently opened up a store front in West Virginia but maintains an online shop as well.

Voyager 17 micro handles
I love my micro handles and I love that I can leave them on my machine all the time and just flip them down when I need them. Here is the video on how they work and I'll show you a few designs I can do easily with my micro handles.

Click HERE to watch the video.

Happy quilting!

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Duckling Video Update!

I'm staying busy working on some new projects so I'll leave you with a quick video of the baby ducklings in their new home and my kids enjoying every second of it! Life on a farm is the best!


Monday, November 5, 2012

Giveaway Winners & Sale Coupon

Just wanted to drop a quick post to announce the 2 giveaway winners for the Montessori At Home! eBook & printables giveaway...and offer you a $2 off sale coupon on the Montessori at Home! eBook in case you weren't selected as a giveaway winner.

After the $2 savings the almost 300-page eBook is only $6.95!  You can't beat that!  To read my take on the eBook and why I had to buy it myself click HERE. You can also go straight to the author's website for even more info:

Click for $2 off!

And the winners are......

I know you will put the materials to good use!

Again thanks to everyone who entered and to John Bowman, Montessor At Home! author, for allowing me to host this fabulous giveaway. 

You still have a chance to purchase the eBook for $2.00 off the regular price by clicking HERE.
Don't let your kids or grandkids miss out!

Thursday, November 1, 2012

The Ugly Duckling

NOT!  I don't think there's such a thing as an ugly duckling.  At least not based on the 11 cutie pies we have added to our little farm.  Look at these babies! Aren't they adorable?

1 week old baby ducklings

As you can probably imagine the kids love having 11 ducks in the middle of the living room. I feel like I spend half my day keeping the baby from throwing something at them or trying to flip their water bowls over. My son is the complete opposite.  Every 2 minutes he says, "Mama, I'm gon' go check on my ducklings and see if they okay." He is quite the caretaker!  According to him he is the "daddy duck" and those are his babies so he has to take care of them. It's so cute.  Except for when he has a full blown melt down because he does not want to leave the house and leave them all alone. "No one gon' be here take care of them, Mama. They gon' be so alone and sad." I'm amazed at what a sweet soul I'm raising. He is an awesome little guy. 

We are keeping them in a big kiddie pool with a brooder lamp on them until they are old enough to live outside and get acclimated to the temperature and all that.

If you're wondering where we got them.. we actually mail ordered them! Crazy, I know! I never knew this kind of stuff existed until we started talking to friends who live on farms too.  They literally put the day old ducklings in a box (with holes) and mailed them to us.  They don't come to your door.  Instead, they are left at your local post office and they call us so we can go pick them up as soon as possible.  They were all alive and healthy and they even included an extra one which seems to be the industry standard for hatcheries.  These ducks will be white in color and are Peking ducks which are supposed to be great egg layers.  The hatchery we ordered from is Murray McMurray Hatchery and was very well recommended by some of our farmer friends.

This is what they'll look like full grown. (Picture from Murray McMurray Hatchery website- Peking ducks)
When you order the ducks you can select if you want male or female or you can order "straight run." Which is a little less expensive and basically means they will send you however many ducklings you order but they won't be sexed.  In other words, we got 10 (+1 freebie) ducks and I don't yet know if they are male or female.  I chose this route to save a little money and because all I need is one male.  Chances are I at least have one male duck in the group.  Apparently, we'll be able to tell who is who when they start quacking their real quacks in a few months. This is such a fun learning experience for all of us!

Do you have ducks? I'd love to hear your tips & info on raising ducks.

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