French Sampler

Full BicycletteHere is my second finish of the year…not saying much since it is already April. However, it was a fun project. The pattern is from french designer by the name of Isabelle Haccourt Vautier called “A Bicyclette.” I purchased the pattern from a little needlework shop in Colorado called Stitcher’s Garden. They have a section of their shop and webpage called “The French Quarter.” This section has this pattern and many other lovely French patterns. It is a really nice shop with fair prices and wonderful people! The sampler worked up quickly and was fun to do. It was done on 32 ct. Belgian Linen with Threadworx overdyed, slightly variegated thread, Woodlawn Green #1048. I have already prepared it for framing. It’s an odd size so I will probably have to mat and frame it myself…too expensive to have it done. Oh…and I really do love to ride my bicycle!

A Bicyclette


I’m working now on cleaning up my art room so that I can actually walk into the room and get to my sewing machine. I have a LOVELY art room, but sadly this winter I’ve just piled things into the room and can’t work in it anymore! Hopefully, it will be done before too long.


Fresh from the Garden

Fresh from my garden last weekend are pretty blue crocuses and teeny tiny daffodils. I love them. And I love the warm weather we are due to have this week. It has been a long awful winter and I surely am delighted with Spring.Tiny Daffodils 2009crocus 2009I took the day off last Friday and went to the International Quilt Show with two of my friends. Bought a tool I probably didn’t need and a pattern I think I already had, but the day was fun. On Saturday I went to a church luncheon and was thrilled to see so many people who have moved away, but returned to share the luncheon with us. There were over 100 women there and it was a beautiful day. On Sunday I went to a wedding shower luncheon for the young man who lives across the street from us (he has a lovely bride-to-be). It was especially fun because many neighbors attended and would you believe that it was the first time in 35 years that all of us neighbors had sat down together at the same time for a lovely lunch! Now we plan to make it a regular thing! What fun.

Yes, I put the bad work-a-day feelings behind me and decided to concentrate on living once more. Yes, I still get tired and worn out, but changing my attitude has helped considerably. Hundreds of you out there work full-time and I have no right to complain…especially when so many are out of work completely. Thanks for all of your support!

Come back soon to see my progress on my french sampler…it’s almost completed! Amities, Averyclaire

Happy Spring…Happy Easter

Girl with UmbrellaHappy Spring…Happy Easter to all. On Sunday, my daughter, son-in-law and their two children, and my son and his wife and their two children will be coming for dinner. I am happy to have them and have been already preparing for the day. It is good to be busy with things I love.

Fabric BoxMy two days off were most enjoyable. I spent the first day with my two good friends, Joan and Pat. They are the kind of friends that support you…no matter what! We attended a workshop given by Barb Pelowski on making small boxes from fabric. The boxes are made with mat board inside and out. The mat board is covered with thin batting and fabric. The box was easy and fun to make. And best of all, it was simply fun to be with Joan and Pat all day long. I know now that I need more time with my friends and will have to fit it into my schedule somehow.
Fabric Box Inside

Cute little box…yes? Perhaps for jewelry, a sewing box, little desk items, etc.

Yvette giftsJust wanted to share with you a surprise gift from my friend Yvette, who lives in Switzerland. It came in the mail totally unexpected. She is such a lovely artist. She painted the beautiful handmade card and knit the lovely socks for me. She included a box of special sharp pins and a pretty calendar of gorgeous mountains. There were also two DELICIOUS chocolate bars (they were gone before I could take a photo.) Thank you again Yvette. What a delight!

Can’t help but take a moment today to reflect on how important friendship is in people’s lives. I know I cannot do without my friends and I treasure them and their friendship. A special thank you to all my friends. I am so LUCKY. Amicalement, Averyclaire


I’ve decided to take off work on Thursday and Friday…a much needed rest…so I have four days. And for starters, tomorrow I am going out with some friends…much needed therapy!

My boss took my words seriously…took me out to lunch…offered me a trip to Peru next winter (we do mission work)…and took over some of the stuff he dumped on me. I am feeling MUCH better. Actually they do pay me quite well and I have a very flexible understanding of my time. They just take advantage of me continually and I guess I am guilty of allowing it. I am one of those responsible types who can’t say no when someone needs help and takes on projects that no one else would even dream of. In retrospect, perhaps I am just spoiled by being retired for a while, then semi-retired. And now I find myself semi-locked into a five day a week job which I never really wanted plus LOTS of work at home (said yes once too often). At this point I am remembering what it was like to be fully retired. My DH has been retired for quite a few years (we retired VERY young) and I am used to taking off with him whenever the mood struck. Actually I can still do this within reason (e.g. a 3 week trip to Colorado in Jan/Feb to care for my son), but I must watch the work load at the office carefully and choose wisely. I am an hourly employee with no benefits in exchange for the ability to “come and go” as I please…except the “come and go” part somehow got STUCK.

Tomorrow will be a day of fun and frolic and I will be “back on track.” Thanks to all of you who wrote me and were so VERY encouraging in my time of need. I have a SMILE on my face and can’t wait until tomorrow! Amities, Averyclaire


girl-prayingmore_pictures_1044I confess to spending a good part (actually MOST) of my weekend being depressed over the overwhelming busy-ness of my job.  What was 2 half days per week for ten years, went quickly into three full days and now five full days.   And actually I take a LOT of work home with me especially on the weekends.   I retired fully ten years ago, was called back to work “just a little” and wonder how I got to be where I am today.   I agreed to a special project last Fall…which is now finished, but five other projects have taken its place.!!   I thought with the economy I’d just ride it out….but this weekend I began to wonder.

Today I had a LONG talk with my “boss” and while I still have a LOT of work, we came to a “somewhat” agreement.   I will see how much the other party holds up their part of the agreement.   It feels pretty good to say a lot and get things off my mind and heart and into words through our “talk.”    I feel pretty good about it.  But I wonder how long it will last.   Time will tell.

Just when I think I am completely fed up….they talk me out of quitting.    I am not sure if I am a glutton for punishment or if I actually like my job and don’t want to leave it.    Perhaps it is a bit of both.   I have come to LOVE tutoring my young man twice a week and enjoy it fully, so I will not give that up. But somehow there is a balance out there somewhere. Work is far too consuming, and while I enjoy the work, I must find what works for me and the office both. They allow me a pretty wide latitude as long as my work is completed.

Anyhow, I have nothing new to show, nothing new to share in my needlearts work….simply because there is NOTHING right now.    I considered closing my blog for a while…but I LOVE the blogging world and all of you…my friends.   So…..I will just be sad for only today and move on.    Maybe a few stitches on SOMETHING will help.             Amities, Averyclaire