Expansion!

I wish I had some new quilts to post about, but truth be told, I haven’t had a chance to sew or quilt for several weeks. I’ve been busy, nonetheless!  Since daughter Brittany and grandson Damien have moved out on their own and vacated their attic bedroom, we decided it was time to expand Longsmith Cottage Quilts with a long-arm quilting machine and dedicated space for it!

So up came the old carpet, and out came all of our DIY painting gear.  I’ve painted the studio space a bright white, since I’ll need all the light I can get, but the real change is what we did with the floor.  Due to budgetary constraints (always present, I’m afraid), we decided to paint the plywood sub-floor and call it a day.  I did some research on Google, Pinterest, etc., and there are some really cool ways to finish a sub-floor with different techniques like stencils and such.  Some folks even cut the plywood up to resemble wood planks!  We settled, however, for a simple gray floor paint – after 2 coats of a good primer/sealer -and – drum roll please – we love it!

I’ve been working on the studio to meet the deadline of the delivery of the new long-arm.  It came in this past week!  And although it’s still in boxes, I can just envision it set up, and after a good deal of practice, all of the lovely quilts I will be able to make and offer!

More to come!

Katie

Missing you

I miss my daughter and my grandson.  Brittany and Damien have lived with us for three and a half years, but just this month, they have moved into their own home.  It was time, for all of us, since our house is small to begin with and Damien just turned 3 and Brittany certainly needed her own (and more) space.  So I’m very proud of her, but still – I miss them.  Now before you get too teary-eyed over all of this, you should also know that they have moved just up the street, within walking distance!  But even so, there is a big difference in sharing daily life with someone, rather than just seeing them occassionally (even if occassionally is actually every other day or so).  Dami seems to learn a dozen new things each day. He now talks about his home and Nana and Papa’s home.  So very bittersweet.

 

 

Live and let live

We love to feed the birds here at Longsmith Cottage.  That’s what I call it.  Mark refers to feeding the squirrels, because they seem to get the lion’s portion of the sunflower seeds meant for our cardinals, chickadees, finches, doves, and anyone else coming in on wing.

Growing squirrels has been going on for a few years, but now, it looks like we are alsowoodpecker catering to a little (relatively speaking) Downy Woodpecker.  Right after a rain, I caught this little guy at the hummingbird feeder, helping himself to the sugary water.  Occasionally, we’ll see him perched at the feeder, pecking up any ants that were unfortunate enough to make it past the “moat” on top.  But he has also learned how to sip nectar, just like our tiny little hummers.

At first, we tried to scare the woodpecker away from the feeder, with little lasting success.  So just as we’ve become resigned to sharing birdseed with the squirrels, we are also quite delighted when this supersized “hummingbird” comes to visit.

It’s all about living and loving.  Everyone is welcome at Longsmith Cottage!

Putting it together

This week, as I was stitching up the last of a Paper Stitches notecard order, the lyrics of “Putting It Together”, sung by Barbra Streisand on her Broadway album (back in 1985) kept playing in my mind. I used to have the actual vinyl album, when I had a record player to play it on. But sometime between 1985 and now, I’m afraid that record player and the album have gone bye-bye, as my 3 year old grandson would say.

The song is all about creating art. Bit by bit. Piece by piece. Putting it together. Amidst and in spite of naysayers who don’t get it.  It’s  also about being true to yourself and being willing to put yourself out there – in your art – for all to see.

So much of the work that we do here at Longsmith Cottage is about creating – if not art, then at least our vision of it.  We invest a lot of ourselves into it.  Paper Stitches encompasses photographs and poetry, and stitches that put it all together.  Bit by bit. Piece by piece. The art of making art. 

Comfort and Love

 

I’ve just completed our first order of My Comforter weighted blankets!  These comforters will be used by counselors in their sessions with very special adopted children.  I had such a great time making them, keeping these important kiddos in mind while I sewed away.  I’m saying prayers for their peace and well-being, and I hope they’ll feel comforted and loved as they wrap up in their comforters.

The other day, Mark mentioned that he was going to make more of an effort to tell people that he loves them.  This is coming from a man who long ago said to me “You know I love you – I shouldn’t have to tell you over and over.” It turns out that he does tell me, countless times, just how much he loves me.  But I think he realized that there are lots of folks in the world who need to know that they are loved.  And that this is a need that he, in his own small way, can do something about.

My Comforter weighted blankets are just another way to offer comfort and love to those who need it most. – Katie

And I will ask the Father and He will give you another Comforter to be with you forever.  John 14:16