Giveaway Feed

May the Joyous Season Begin! And the giveaway winner...



If it wasn't already obvious by my screaming at you like Will Ferrell in "Elf" ("SANTA!!!!  I KNOW HIM!!!"), I LOVE CHRISTMAS.   I live for it every year.  OMG.  I love it.

There is nothing quite like seeing this each Christmas season ~~


For those of you not familiar with this light extravaganza, this is from the light show in the old Wanamaker's building, which is now Macy's.  I took this on Friday when I was downtown, and this is at the end of the show, when all the lights are on at the same time.  The entire show is set to Christmas music, and narrated by one of my all-time favorite people ever, Julie Andrews.  The original recording was done by John Facenda.  The lights are covering up the pipes of the pipe organ in the building, which is the largest pipe organ in the world.  The end of the show features the organist playing Christmas music, and it's all just so magical and wonderful.  I love it all. 

And more from Wanamakers...I mean, Macy's....



Yes, Virginia, there really is a Santa Claus.


Love.  it.  all.

I hope you're all getting into the holiday spirit!!!

Before I announce the winner (which was chosen at random), I must tell you - I LOVED reading all of your comments.  Loved every one.  I've actually gone back and read them again a few times.  The stitching community is so full of wonderful, giving people, and it's obvious in the comments left on the post.  I love all my readers, old and new :-)

Now, without further ado, I announce the giveaway winner from my Pay it Forward giveaway.  

The winner is ~~~~

sew~amy said...

HI Jacki, I'm stitching on my first piece of 40 count right now (Mary's Sampler). I love working with the higher count linen. I am grateful for so many things, my family, friends, my job, my health. I'm grateful that my husband has a hobby so I have time to do my hobby... stitching. I would use the fabric for the pile of patterns I have yet to stitch. :)

Please email me your address, and I'll get your package in the mail asap.

Thank you all SO MUCH for participating in my giveaway!!  

Stay tuned for Christmas shenanigans - I'm doing a December Daily album this year, so I hope to keep you updated on the planning & scrapping of the Christmas craziness!! That of course requires me to actually reign in my ADD to sit and write a post about all that insanity, but that's neither here nor there......

Much love ~~~


Pay It Forward

This fall marked my 13th year as one of the marching instructors for my high school marching band.  13 years that flew right on by.  It started as a community service project for one of my seminar classes my junior year in college, and I just kept on teaching.

Finals 2103

I'm kind of a band geek.

And guess what?  I'm totes ok with this.  I'm an athlete at my very core, and nothing makes me happier than holding a softball, even just to  imagine striking someone out one last time, but there's something about the arts, music especially, that just captivates me.

The staff has become some of my closest friends, and at this point, I honestly don't know what I'd do without my time with them 3 days a week during the season. 

This year has had its rough patches, and this fall, through the kindess of the music program, I was the recipient of a random act of kindness (RAK).  And guess what?  I've decided to pay that forward.

So here, today, I'm announcing a giveaway right here on this lil' ol' blog.  I'm forever grateful for all those who stop here, see what I create, get inspired, leave comments, etc.  I'm all over Instagram, snapping pics of what I do, bake, create, all of it, and I'm also constantly inspired by those creatives that I follow.   I LOVE seeing what everyone is stitching (I seriously need to get caught up on Plum Street Samplers' Christmas SAL....)

For the stitchers who follow me on Instagram (and if you don't, click on the insta link on the right and follow the insanity!!), you know I'm 16 shades of crazy, because I'm almost always stitching on 40 count fabric.  I know right.  Insane.

But I also know that there are other crazies out there, and if you love fabric as much as I do, you'll love what I'm offering.

These beautiful pieces of fabric ---


From left to right, they are: Sandcastle, Antique Gold (which looks green in this picture, but there is a gold twinge to it in person), Brandied Apples, and Buttercream.  Each piece measures 13" x 18".

All fabrics are from Silkweaver, and are AWESOME.  I've totally fallen in love with the quality fabric they have, and the dyes are amazing.

So, what do you have to do to be entered?  Simple - leave me a comment, and tell me what you're grateful for this fall, and for what you'd use the fabric.  A host of Christmas ornaments?  A bunch of Blackbird Designs smalls for your home decor?  A gift for a friend?!  The possibilites are endless :-)

This giveaway will be open through 30 November 13.  Tell your friends!  Share the wealth!  Pay it forward!!

Much love ~~~



Update on 1 December 2013 - this giveaway is now closed.  Thank you!!

Happy Halloween!!

Good morning, all!  I hope you're having a wonderful day so far!

For those of you who don't know, I'm a Philly girl, and our region was rocked pretty hard by that crazy b, Sandy, Sunday and Monday.  NYC & the Jersey coast were pretty much destroyed.  Please keep all of the people who have power outages and property damage in your prayers.  I was fortunate in that I don't have any property damage and I didn't lose power at all during the storm.  

With all that downtime, I was able to get a good amount of stitching done.  I worked on my sister's wedding gift, and I started some of my Christmas stitching, too.

graph from JBW Designs

I've been keeping you all updated in Instagram, and seriously sometimes legit forget that I have a blog I need to update, too!!!  Sheesh!!!

I know it may seem early to be posting Christmas stuff, but I always feel like I get so far behind with my gifts & stitching, that I have to start earlier this year to make sure I get it all done!

I have done some pretty cool Halloween stitched pieces, however, like Halloween Eve, Skeleton Crew, and Eat, Drink, and Be Scary.  So, although Christmas is my FAVORITE time of year, I do enjoy all the fun Halloween graphs that are out there, too :-)

Well, peeps, that's it for this Halloween morning.  I'm waiting for the delivery guys to get here with my dining room table (it was supposed to be delivered Monday....), and then it's back to work for me.

Also - if you havent already, hop on over to my friend Catherine's blog - she's hosting a giveaway sponsored by The Strawberry Sampler in honor of Breast Cancer Awareness Month.

I hope you all have a wonderful day, and HAPPY HALLOWEEN!!!!!! :-)

Much love ~~~


And...the winner is....??

Hello all you lovely people!

I am finally back to the land of the living (albiet barely) after being really sick all of last week.  My apologies to all of you who have been anxiously waiting for me to announce the winner of my giveaway which closed last Wednesday.

I thought it would be fun to have you all watch a lil' video of me drawing the winner, so guess what?!  That's precisely what I did!  

And then....YouTube was being a pain and I lost my patience.

So...instead of the lovely video I had planned for you all, I had to resort to a picture taken from the stills of the video --


The winner!!!


MrsCourtneyP!  Congratulations!  Email me your address so I can ship this out to you ASAP!  :-)

You can see the jar in the background where I had everyone's names who left me a comment on the post (or sent me an email). 

THANK YOU ALL for participating!!!  I hope to have another giveaway very soon....because I love making stuff....and I love giving it away :-)

Much love ~~~



So...I have a new obsession.  I know, right.  Like I need another freaking obsession.

Preserving.  I'm hooked.

I'm sick of paying astronomical prices in the winter for produce, so I'm bound and determined to figure out this whole thing called "canning".  This past weekend, I think I got the knack.

What do you do with end of season beyond ripe strawberries that you know will go bad because you can't eat them fast enough?

Why, you boil them in their own natural juices, with a smidge of coconut palm sugar.....


And you make strawberry jam...


Hoooooo boy this batch of jam is GOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOD.

Oh, and yes, you read that right - the only two ingredients in this jam are strawberries and coconut palm sugar.  It is out-of-this-world delicious.  

Home preserving is making a comeback (and I found canning recipes in my great-aunt's Betty Crocker cookbook from the early 50' better believe I'm trying them out in the very near future....), and I plan on making a retro styled apron to complete the scene.

Right now, I have to go get my Cricut & make labels for these jars....

Until next time my friends...go forth and bake something yummy ;-)

Much love ~~~

PS - don't forget to enter my giveaway!  Head to the original post or to my facebook page & leave a comment to win!! :-)

A Shadowbox Feature

These shadowboxes are seriously becoming one of my favorite things to do.  It's such a quick and easy way (well....quick once your creative juices vibe with your brain so you can actually finish your project. i all but threw piles of paper in the air in disgust one night because i just couldn't get this to jive right.) to preserve a specific memory.  

Whether it's a wedding invitation, like I've done here and in the past for my sister and my friend, Danielle, or it's a baby announcement, a graduation announcement, whatever!  The possibilities for this type of project are endless.

This shadowbox is one I was asked to do by my friend, Erin, for her brother and sister-in-law to celebrate their first year anniversary.  (and....I hope they don't mind having their pic plastered all over my bliggity blog here......;-) )

First off, they got married in Ireland.  Ireland.  If that wasn't cool enough, they got married in a CASTLE.  A CASTLE, PEOPLE.  Castle.  I would die.

So, when I found out Erin's mom saved the brochure from the castle, I knew I had to incorporate at least one picture in the shadowbox somehow.

Recap:  CASTLE.



The hardest part about this was trying to figure out how to embellish the empty space without detracting from the pictures and the invitation.   For the other shadowboxes I've done, I only incorporated one picture along with the wedding invitation.  This required more coordination, which I think is why I almost lit the entire thing on fire one night.  Good thing I didn't.

A castle.

The gorgeous bride and her groom.

Seriously, peeps.  How amazeballs is this?!  The castle is in the background and is just AWESOME.  The top pic is one I took from the brochure Erin's mom had saved.

I ultimately ended up deciding that the best way to embellish was to get out my trusty Cricut, and do a huge cut-out to serve as part of the background (see that blue flourish? that was the color of the bridesmaids's dresses), yet wasn't just a block of color.  

The paper underneath with all the old script was something I'd found in my stash and decided it was a must for this project, since there's a centuries-old castle in the background.  The key element serves the same purpose as the old script patterned paper - it goes along with the vintage feel of the pictures.

A castle.  For serious.

That's all the crafty I have for you today, peeps.  I'm lost in this castle (can you tell i'm slightly obsessed with it?!), and the history around it.  You know, the whole knight in shining armour deal.  The moat (every castle has a moat), the damsel in distress.  All that.

Moving on.

Go forth and be crafty on this glorious fall day!  Let your creativity flow as we rapidly approach the holidays (seriously - Halloween will be here, like, tomorrow...then Thanksgiving, then CHRISTMAS.....i LOVE this time of year :-) )!

Much love ~~~


PS - don't forget to enter my giveaway!  See my post from earlier today -- the deadline's been extended!!!

Giveaway Update

Hello my dear followers and visitors.

It was brought to my attention last night that your comments are not posting on the original giveaway post.

I have NO idea why this is happening.  I've tried to figure out what exactly caused this issue, and can't quite pinpoint it.

Therefore, I'm extending the deadline to post a comment, in hopes that eventually I'll get it to work.  In the meantime, if your comment does not post, post a comment on my facebook page on the post which has the link to the original blog post.  If you do not have facebook, send me an email (link is in my sidebar) with your comment.

The new deadline to post a comment on either my original post or on my facebook page (or to send an email if you don't have facebook) is 19 September 12 at 11:59PM EST.

Thank you, again, to the lovely follower who brought this to my attention!  

Much love (and luck!) ~~~


It feels a little fall-ish

Yesterday it really started to feel like fall here in the Philly area.  The air was crisp, but the sun was still beating warm rays through the big, puffy white clouds.

So what happens at my house when it begins to feel like fall?

I make gluten-free spice bread....

I brew a pot of coffee...


ohhh my this looks scrumptrulescent....


And I get to stitching.....


pattern by Blue Ribbon Designs


I don't know about the rest of you, but I can't wait for my first mug of mulled cider...

Until then...go forth and be crafty....or bake something yummy ;-)

Much love ~~~


PS - don't forget to enter my giveaway! Head to the original post & leave a comment there to win!!  :-)


October "Word Play" and a Giveaway!

Hello all my lovely followers!  I hope you had a wonderful weekend!  Here in the States, it was Labor Day weekend, so most people had the day off.  I hope you were all able to have a relaxing weekend, since this weekend unoffically marks the end of summer.  Time flies, that's for damn sure.  I feel like it was just the 4th of July.

Once I got rid of a migraine that sidelined me most of Friday and Saturday, I spent the weekend feverishly stitching.  Most of that time was spent on Rachel's wedding gift, but I was able to final stitches in my October "Word Play".  I think it turned out super cute on this fabric - Antique Almond by Silkweaver.  The muted browns & oranges for fall really mixed well with the dye of this fabric, and I love how it turned out!

October "Word Play" by With Thy Needle & Thread

Oh so cute!!!!

I just love that witch.  She's all cute with her pumpkin in her hand, but you know that cauldron will be used for a spell that's beyond awesome once the sun goes down....just sayin'....

I did manage to put down my needle & thread for long enough to take the train up to NYC for the day on Sunday.  It was an overcast & humid day, but not hot, so it was a perfect day to walk through the city.  I'd been wanting to visit this trim store called M&J Trimming since I'd seen pics on Holly Becker's blog,decor8.  She was teaching in NYC, and stopped in to M&J and snapped some pics.  Since then, I've been dying to get in there and see what was up.  (btdubs - Holly is a wonderful creative person to follow - she's got a great blog & takes awesome pics that she shares on Instagram)

Garment District in NYC!
This store was seriously insane with the amount of trim, ribbon, name it, they had it.  I had a specific project in mind for trim that I wanted (which will be shown in a later post), but I found myself wanting almost everything I saw, so that I had it just in case.  I know you all know what I mean...
M&J Trimming

 Seriously.  Does not even hold a candle to how much stuff was in this store.  It was almost overwhelming.  I can't wait to go time I'm going when the fabric stores are all mood....yesssss.......

Ok.  So enough about walls and walls of trim and dreams of mood fabric.  You got this far, and now you're wondering where I hid this supposed giveaway, amiright?

Well, kids, here it is:

I'm giving away the stitched October "Word Play" pictured in the beginning of this post!!  We're all about to get ready to decorate for the fall, and this lil' guy would make a perfect addition to your decorations!  You can hang it on a doorknob, or have it sit out on a table, or hang it up on the wall!  Whatever! 

To win my stitched piece:

Follow me here at this blog and leave a comment telling me your favorite Halloween memory (embarrassing costume party stories are highly encouraged. ;-)).

For additional chances to win, you will get an extra entry for each of the following you complete:

1) Share this giveaway on your blog.  Come back here and leave a comment with a link to your post which shares the giveaway. 
2) Follow me on twitter, come back to this post and tell me that you did. 
3) Tweet this giveaway. Come back here and leave a comment telling me that you did.
4) Like my blog's page on facebook.  Come back to this post and leave a comment telling me you did. 
5) Share this post on facebook to your friends and/or followers.  Come back here and leave a comment telling me that you did.
6) Follow me on Instagram.  Comment on your favorite crafty pic that I've posted to date.  Come back here and leave a comment telling me you did.
7) Follow me on Google+.  Come back here and leave a comment telling me you did.

All links to my social media sites (twitter/facebook/google+/etc) can be found in the right sidebar of my blog.

Again, you will get one entry for each of the comments you leave.  If you leave anonymous comments, please include your email address in your comment so that I can contact you if you win.  Otherwise, please ensure your contact information is included in your profile so I can contact you if you win.  

Giveaway closes at 11:59 PM EST 19 September 2012.  Winner will be chosen at random.  

Thank you all for following me and my crazy stiching and crafting!  I love sharing all my ideas and projects here with each and every one of you!  

Go forth and be crafty...and GOOD LUCK!!!!  :-)