Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Happy New Year!

I wish everyone a very Happy New Year! Right now we are finished our Christmas vacation, the kids head back to school on Thursday and chances are pretty good that the temperature in Fargo is a whole lot colder than Huntington Beach, California which is where we were yesterday - sigh! Back to reality but it's always good to go back home!

Friday, December 27, 2013

Another Year is almost done...

Seriously, can someone please tell me where exactly all of 2013 went? A couple more days and 2014 starts - wow! We had a great Christmas - the kids were SURE they saw a shadow which was one of Santa's reindeer when they were in bed on Christmas Eve and after opening their stockings declared this to be "the best Christmas ever!!!"  Now I better get my stitching fingers warmed up and start getting a ton of new designs stitched and ready to release in 2014 - something for you to look forward to!

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Merry Christmas Eve today!

I hope that as today goes into full swing that everyone can have time to carve out for family and friends and everything else that this magical season holds that is important in your lives. I am so thankful for my family and that our kids are happy and healthy...and I am thankful for everyone who supports my work as Pickle Barrel Designs! So put out that plate of cookies for Santa along with a glass of milk and see Christmas through the wonderful eyes of a child this year - trust me, it's worth it!

Monday, December 16, 2013

It's a very Mickey Christmas!

We decided to do something really fun this year and took the kids to Disneyland before Christmas as a great big surprise... nothing like leaving behind minus 30 degree temps for mid 80's and sunny!  I'll take two please! So I shall share some pictures from the trip tonight and add more in the coming days when I have a little more time. I hope you are all busy as little elves in the lead up to Christmas and have a very merry holiday with your family and friends! Ho Ho ho!

Saturday, December 7, 2013

Elf on a Shelf....

Sooooo, my sister and I decided to get an "Elf on the Shelf" to start as a tradition with my kids (ages 5 & 7) and let's just say it was a complete and utter disaster from the start! We took the Elf out of the box, I lay in bed with the kids nestled on each side of me and read the book to them, then we discussed that the Elf comes alive at night and does mischievous things - I thought it was a great concept - except they were completely hung up on the fact this little stuffed Elf COULD come to life at night that it really freaked them out and they wanted nothing to do with their new Christmas friend! Alas, we finally came up with an alternate plan telling them the next day that we traded in the live Elf for just a plain stuffed one - which we pointed out had a tag attached to his side that said "Made in China" or something and that he couldn't come slice at night because he was just a stuffed Elf toy but that Mommy and Auntie were allowed to make him do funny things once the kids went to bed each night and they bought into the idea so here are a couple nights worth of Elf material - our 5 year old comes down in the morning, sees what the Elf is doing and yells "Good one Auntie!" and laughs and laughs ... Let me know what you think of his escapades so far - the Elf, not our 5 year old - LOL! 

Thursday, December 5, 2013


Since the last time I checked I wasn't a snowman, I'm not quite sure what to say about the bone chilling cold that set in today other than brrrrrr in a big way! For those of you not well versed in Midwest cold spells we are talking daytime HIGHS of minus 15 degrees then when you factor in the windchill it makes the actual air temp MINUS 30 DEGREES!!! I swear, mankind wasn't made to withstand this cold - sigh - and according to the weather we can expect this frigid arctic air to lock in over us for the next week, here's a shot that I just took which shows it's so cold there are sundogs in the sky (rainbow effect)....ahhhh I feel better already ... Thanks for listening!

Sunday, December 1, 2013

Happy Post Thanksgiving!

Now that all those turkey dinners have finally started wearing off we are into the next stage of Thanksgiving...leftovers!!!  We had a lovely Thanksgiving with our little family, Auntie Karen and my stepdaughter along with her husband and their son who is the same age almost as our son! Food, family and good times not to mention the ever important Black Friday shopping...yes, I am one of those totally insane people who looove their Black Friday shopping because there's nothing like standing in line at your local Target and waiting over an hour to pay but I got some incredible deals so I am one happy girl! So from my family to your family, Happy Holiday season and I am so very grateful to each and every person that follows my blog and has ever bought a Pickle Barrel Designs pattern!

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Ornament Number 3!

You know, I already had 3 of the ornaments designed, did a 4th design on the weekend and have one more to go - it's finding the time to stitch the little suckers that seems to have kerfuffeled me though! So sit tight and be patient - here is #3!

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Christmas Ornament preview #2!

Here is another little look at the second ornament coming out - they will all be grouped together on one chart!

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

New Christmas Ornaments coming your way...

I am madly stitching up a batch of wonderful and whimsical Christmas ornaments just for you all to stitch up as gifts or ornament tags for gifts....here is a little sneak peek at the first one! Here's what to expect...4 ornaments...a new one previewed on my blog each day for the next 4 days so keep checking back and let me know what you think - Ho Ho Ho!

Thursday, November 7, 2013

"Operation Elf" - new release!

I have finally got my act together and managed to finalize the chart for "Operation Elf" which is a jolly little Christmas design with smiling elves and a couple of Rudolph's friends getting for the Holidays! I am just waiting for my order from Hoffman Distributing so your local needlework store should be able to order it in shortly! Happy Stitching!

Thursday, October 31, 2013

Happy Halloween to All!

Well another Halloween has just finished up and we have two happy and very exhausted kids in bed and sleeping soundly now - one was a Fireman and our daughter wanted to go out as Taylor Swift! No easy way for her to carry a guitar and a treat bag but we managed to get her to trade out the guitar for a bejeweled microphone instead! The weather was decent - a little cold but at least the rain we had earlier today stopped before the kids went out trick or treating...here are some photos to share our Halloween fun today!  Next up...turkey day!

Friday, October 25, 2013

Breast Cancer Awareness..."Bras on Broadway"!

In Fargo we have a splendid boutique hotel called The Hotel Donaldson, or as locals call it, "The HoDo" and every October they do a big fundraiser to support breast cancer awareness. The event runs through all of October and throughout the month, local businesses collect bras and donations, and this is the 8th year for the event.  The pictures here were taken today and show 4,300 BRAS hanging down the side of the hotel - let me say it is quite a spectacle!!!! During the first 7 years, the event has raised $430,000 for women in the area fighting breast cancer. I really wanted to share this amazing spectacle with you all!

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Halloween is around the corner....

Then of course it turns into Thanksgiving and finally...Hanukkah and Christmas! Actually, for the first time in thousands of years, the first night of Hanukkah will fall on Thanksgiving night and it won't happen again for a VERY long time so that is rather unique. I have a couple of cute Christmas designs going out for framing, then they will be ready for release - the goblins design is already released and available through your local needlework stores. Also coming up soon will be another giveaway - this one will be Christmas themed so be sure to check back and watch for it - the last time my two winners were THRILLED with their gifts they won!!

So here are a couple of Fall weather pics - all the way from scary storm clouds (complete with a tornado alert that day!) to the changing of the leaves. I think it is the winter nesting mode that I love looking forward to!

Friday, October 11, 2013

Happy Happy Happy

As Phil on Duck Dynasty would say..."Happy Happy Happy" and that is what our kids are like most days - here is how cheerful they were one morning this week waiting for the school bus - we're talking well before 8 am and they are cheery and smiling that early!!!! Right now we are expecting a wave of nasty weather and have a tornado alert in place until 8 pm - strange weather things for late October...but grand stitching time when you have to stay indoors, that's for sure!

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Fall into Autumn!

My absolute favorite season is Fall, no doubts about it! I love every little thing about this time of the year, especially living in the Midwest where the foliage starts their annual show of blazing leaf colors. Mind you we went from having temps in the 80's last week to a chance for snowflakes this weekend! Yes, I really did mean to type the word snow there...sigh...not ready for winter quite yet though. I have some new designs releasing in the next couple of weeks so be sure to check back for pictures as I post them.

As always, Happy Stitching and any referrals of stitchers you can send my way to follow my blog will always be greatly appreciated - thank you!

Friday, September 27, 2013

Happy October!

Where oh where has the summer gone? October is right around the corner and the stores are all filled with Halloween costumes and *GASP*, Christmas stuff! I'm not joking, I was in Hobby Lobby this morning and they have aisles and aisles AND aisles of everything Christmas!  So have a great weekend and Happy Stitching!

P.S. Took a little side trip to our Red River Zoo on in-service day this week where the kids had no school - isn't it cute ?!!