Mrs. Pearson hummed the tune of her favorite game show while she guided the vacuum cleaner round the living room. Her plush, pink carpet wasn’t dirty in the least, as she’d only hoovered yesterday, but the act of guiding the vacuum in between the furniture always helped her think. And right now, she had a big thing to think about. Her oldest daughter would be off to university tomorrow and she still didn’t know what to give her as a going away gift.
Marlene was too practical for flowers, too simple for jewelry, and too proper for any of the gifts other mothers were giving their daughters these days. No, Mrs. Pearson was in a pickle and time was running out.
The vacuum cleaner bumped against the clawed legs of the coffee table and Mrs. Pearson wrinkled her forehead. Then she immediately chided herself for putting another wrinkle on her face. Her years digging in Ottoman ruins had put enough lines on her face, and sand in her shoes now that she thought about it. Without meaning to, Mrs. Pearson’s eyes drifted over to the rug in the entryway.
It was the only piece of carpeting in the house she didn’t vacuum but that was because it preferred to be dirty. It also preferred to be sat upon but since Mrs. Pearson didn’t have the right sort of decor for that style of living, they’d settled on it being the entryway rug. It could stay as dusty and grey as it liked and she didn’t have to sit on it every day.
Come to think of it, she hadn’t sat on it in a while. She used to all the time, zipping down to the drug store or the local park for a picnic. She let Marlene take it for show and tell once. All her classmates had wanted a ride on the magic carpet and the poor thing got so tuckered out, it took part in nap time.
The last time Mrs. Pearson had taken it for a ride had been to her church last month. Mr. Pearson had the car at the shop and she couldn’t walk to church with the four dozen cupcakes she’d made for the bake sale. Her face got a bit pink as she remembered the fright she had given the vicar. Still, the rug had had a jolly good time whizzing up and through the bell tower.
“I really ought to take it out more,” Mrs. Pearson said as she clicked the vacuum to its upright position and switched it off. ”It could use a bit more attention.”
Mrs. Pearson was just wrapping the last of the cord up when the idea came to her. She smiled and, after tucking the vacuum away, went downstairs to find a nice length of ribbon. She came back upstairs, moved the shoes to a corner, and slowly, fondly rolled up the carpet. Marlene would definitely have a wonderful first year at university.
Wise owls wear reading glasses. It’s embarrassing to mistake a mouse for a mole when the moon isn’t up in the sky yet. Some young owls think that pince nez glasses make them look like dorks and prefer to squint but the wise ones know that glasses are cool.
Owls constantly amaze me. Did you know that their face is essentially an ear? Yes, when you stare down an owl, you’re really staring down an ear. A feathered ear. Hehe. For thousands of years owls have been associated with wisdom and I always assume that if they are so wise, they know to carry their reading glasses with them.
Lady Roanoke watched the ships sail back to England from the new colony in the Americas. She lived through the harsh winters and blistering summers on the coast. She disappeared before the supply ships returned three years later and by 1588, her colony had become famous for its disappearance. Like the rest of those left behind, she knows the secret of the ‘Lost Colony’, but sadly, she took the secret with her.
When I was in high school, I remember learning about the lost colony of Roanoke and immediately coming up with all sorts of ideas about what happened. The inhabitants were invaded by the native people. The inhabitants were starving and moved to another location on the coast. The natives took them in so that they could survive a harsh winter and they never went back.
To this day, the lost colony is still a mystery for historians. However, I like to imagine that Lady Roanoke contains the answer, though her lips are now long sealed.
Want to know more about the piece? Her dress displays images of tobacco and tomato leaves, plants that are native to the Americas.
‘Lady Roanoke’ is now available as an 8″ x 10″ print in my shop. She makes a wonderful inspirational piece for your study.
When I created my very first embroidery pattern nearly 2 years ago, I never could have imagined how large a part of my business they would become. I immediately realized that you were so much more creative and crafty than I realized. You wanted to give friends and family a gift they could make themselves. You wanted to give yourself a reason for more downtime. Heck, you wanted to sew something fun!
Last year, I stopped selling my embroidery kits. There weren’t the best they could be and it bothered me. I wanted to make things easier for you to start them. However, it wasn’t until Modcloth came asking for them that I had the kick in the pants to revamp the kits. It took a lot of mad-scientist brainstorming and internet research to figure out the perfect solution.
After many countless nights, however, I’m happy to announce that a whole new line of embroidery kits will be coming your way March 1st!
As you may have noticed, I’m terrible at keeping things secret and I want to give you a chance to snatch up an embroidery kit right away. I know the official launch will be fast and frantic and I can’t guarantee that there will be enough of every design. So I wanted to guarantee a way that you could get the kit you really want and not have to wait two weeks for more fabric to arrive at my door.
Pre-order starts today and runs until midnight on Saturday, February 22nd. You can find all of the kits HERE! Oh, and since you’re saving me some hassle, I’m saving you some cash. Pre-order kits are just $20! Starting March 1st, they go up to their full price of $25. So act fast!
I’ve never been good at sewing. I can hem my pants and make the occasional pillowcase but I will forever be in awe of the Project Runway contestants who can sew a gown in two days! While my dreams of sewing a dress have been put aside, I wanted to give you a bit of extra magic for your own sewing projects. So last year I started out on a project to make some silly fabric for you.
My favorite design by far are these rainbow trout. There’s just something hilarious about the idea of a fish quilt or a fish jumper.
Spoonflower, the company selling my fabric, also sells wallpaper and it was just too funny not to share. A friend of mine suggested it would have made great wallpaper for Wallace and Grommit’s house.
These blackbirds and nests let you pretend that you’re the old man from the Edward Lear limerick who had birds in his beard. Instead, you may have birds on your dress.
Then I took the ‘wearing birds’ idea up a notch and designed this fabric. I personally made a scarf out of this and it’s my newest favorite accessory. When I wear the scarf, it feels like I’m playing dress up. I’m the magician putting on a magic cloak that turns me into a bird.
The very best part about Spoonflower selling these designs for me is that you can order the design on whatever fabric you like! Cotton, linen, silk, knit, they have it all! That lets you create exactly what you want, whether it’s a knit fish jumper or a silk feather scarf. You can find all of the fabric designs HERE.
What will you sew with my fabric?
The geese of Fort Vancouver are not ordinary geese. They are not even, technically, Canadian either, having given up their dual citizenship long ago. They are, in fact, the last remaining, active unit of a top secret government defense unit. Trained from egg, these geese carry on the mission that their 32-times-great grandfathers started back before Washington earned its statehood. In those days, they simply served the fort in the outermost defense positions. They had free range of the grounds during the early morning so long as they sounded the alarm should any French fur trader be sneaking up with fake beaver pelts. (This happened frequently as back then rats were the same size as beavers and a particularly well-groomed one could easily stand in its more expensive relative’s stand.)
As the French traders left and the fort became a military outpost, the geese received an upgrade in their duties. They now maintained full day and night watch both from the parade grounds and marshy riverfront to the skies overhead. Eventually the fort built an airstrip. Suddenly the geese were on air force duty, being drilled on flying formations to cover a pilot. To this day, the geese at Fort Vancouver still take off every time a plane races down the runway.
Even though human soldiers no longer march in step endlessly across the long parade grounds, the geese keep up their drills, determined to be ready should the military call upon them to guard the winter home of their 32-times-great grandfathers.
That’s why there are still hundreds of geese walking the parade grounds of Fort Vancouver every day. That’s why thousands fly overhead every morning, their Vs and Ws filling the sky to every horizon. And that’s why I politely doff my hat to every one I pass. For should the Fort come under attack, I want them to know that I believe in their ability to guard it well, whether it’s against the French, Germans, Russians, or aliens.