March 28, 2022

Ordinary People

 Being with Jesus changed His disciples, a fact that was evident after Peter and John healed a crippled man and were then brought before the religious leaders for questioning. “The members of the council were amazed when they saw the boldness of Peter and John, for they could see that they were ordinary men with no special training in the Scriptures. They also recognized them as men who had been with Jesus” (Acts 4:13).

The disciples were ordinary people, just like we are. They weren’t scholars or trained speakers. They were fishermen and tax collectors. Just ordinary working folks. But because of their time with Jesus, and especially because of the Holy Spirit that came to dwell within them, they became bold in their determination to tell people about Jesus.
The disciples were ordinary people, just like we are |

It was dangerous for them to be preaching Jesus, but they didn’t let that risk silence them. Can we say the same? Speaking about Jesus isn’t likely to cause us physical harm or get us thrown in jail, as it might have for Peter and John, but it may cause us to lose followers on social media or friends in real life. Do we allow those risks to silence us? Or do we speak up, accepting that while some people may not want to hear our message, it’s important to speak up anyway because there are people who need to hear the truth?

March 21, 2022

It's Not About Our Feelings

Saying ‘I’m sorry’ at the right times can be hard for some kids to master. Some don’t ever want to say it, even after they’ve obviously hurt someone. I’ve had more than one toddler clamp their mouth shut and refuse to say those two words when prompted. Other kids say it even when they don’t need to. When Nathan was little he would apologize when asking me to do something for him, or for waking me up when he had a nightmare. I often had to tell him “You’re not doing anything wrong!” 

Even as adults, feelings of guilt can creep in when they’re unwarranted. Often this happens because of past sins that have been forgiven but that we have trouble letting go. Thankfully, our salvation does not hinge on our feelings! John wrote, “Even if we feel guilty, God is greater than our feelings, and he knows everything” (1 John 3:20). What a relief!
God is greater than our feelings |
Feelings of guilt are a wonderful thing when they prompt us to turn to God for salvation or to make amends with people we have hurt. But when a guilty feeling clings to us, threatening to make us doubt our salvation, we can remind ourselves that He is greater than our feelings. 

I also love that John adds that God knows everything. God knows all about whatever it is we’re feeling guilty about. Our salvation isn’t based on God ignoring some of our sins. It’s based on Him forgiving them all and setting us free. God is greater than our unwarranted feelings of guilt.

March 14, 2022

Points of Connection Pattern Release

I'm excited to have my first pattern release of 2022 today! Allow me to introduce you to Points of Connection. Get the pattern in my Etsy shop at the introductory price this week.
Points of Connection quilt pattern |
I used the new On the Wind collection, by Jill Finley for Riley Blake, and the fabrics are so much fun! There are kites and dandelion clocks and paper airplanes flying around. The kites are definitely my favourite.
Points of Connection quilt pattern |

Points of Connection quilt pattern |
Square in a square blocks are hard to stitch accurately, so I chose to paper piece them. The whole quilt comes together much better when all of the units are accurate!
Points of Connection quilt pattern |
I had trouble coming up with a name for this quilt, so I sent pictures of it to a couple of friends asking for help. Michelle has named a few of my quilts now and she came through again. She said the first thing she noticed about the quilt was all the connections, which is what led us to settle on Points of Connection. Even with all the places where elements of the design connect, there are actually few places where the points need to match up. Bonus, right? 

The name feels meaningful as we were figuring out the name on a day when gas prices were predicted to go up because of Russia's invasion of Ukraine and it made me think about all the connections between people around the world. We may be far apart, but what happens in one part of the world still affects us. Whether it's the war in Ukraine affecting gas prices or a drought in California affecting food availability, and of course the infamous virus that traveled the world so easily, we are more connected than we may have realized.
Points of Connection quilt pattern |
I've mentioned before that one of my 2022 goals is to make more small quilts to use up some of the off-cuts of Warm and Natural batting from making my bigger quilts, so this 42" x 56" baby size fits the theme perfectly. It's actually longer than most of my baby quilts, which tend to be square, and I really like the longer length. The Points of Connection pattern also includes instructions for a 56" x 70" throw size.

My go-to double loop quilting was a simple choice, since it echoes the flight trails of the paper airplanes in the green fabric. With the white background, I used white Aurifil for the quilting. I'm always surprised how not-distracting it is when thread used for an all-over design doesn't match some of the fabrics. Sure, it might be a bit different if I used black thread, but white works fine 😊
Points of Connection quilt pattern |
I was distracted the evening I put the binding on, so I had it finished before I realized I forgot to put my label on first. Oops! I guess I'll have to do a little hand stitching at some point to fix that.
Points of Connection quilt pattern |
In the meantime, the quilting looks very pretty on the back, doesn't it?
Points of Connection quilt pattern |
Points of Connection got a snowshoe trek/photo shoot and I love the pictures of it laying in the snow.
Points of Connection quilt pattern |
Even better, look what I found when I picked the quilt up off the snow. Quilted snow! Can we make that a thing somehow?
quilting lines in the snow |
Points of Connection is available in my Etsy shop as both a PDF and a printed pattern. It's available at its introductory price now through Friday, so get your copy today to get the best price.
Points of Connection quilt pattern |

I'm linking up this week with NTT, Beauties Pageant, TGIFF and Finished (or not) Friday.

Something Special

With the Add Grace QAL and a new pattern coming out today, I have spent a lot of time at my computer this week! That has meant there hasn't been time to write a new devotion to share today, so I dug back into the archives for this one from 2014 😊 

Devotion for the Week...

"She sure thinks she's something special."

Have you ever said that about someone? When we say it, we don't normally mean it in a good way, do we? We mean the person seems arrogant, stuck-up and full of herself (or himself). Often we say it about people we don't like. And, of course, we hope no one ever says it about us!

Bragging, talking about ourselves too much and making it sound like we think we're better than other people are all things our parents tried to teach us to avoid. As adults, we have learned how much we dislike people who are always focused solely on themselves, people who are selfish and self-centered. It's hard to spend time around people like that, isn't it?

There are many Bible passages about humility. In Romans 12:3, Paul wrote,  "Do not think of yourself more highly than you ought, but rather think of yourself with sober judgment, in accordance with the faith God has distributed to each of you.

1 Peter 5:5 says, "All of you, clothe yourselves with humility toward one another, because, “God opposes the proud but shows favor to the humble."

James 4:10 says, "Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will lift you up."

And Colossians 3:12 says, " Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience."

Clearly God does not want His people to be arrogant, to be full of themselves and selfish. He wants us to be humble, to be selfless and willing to associate with others, regardless of their social or financial standing.

But it's possible to get humility wrong too. Some people think too little of themselves.  They think everyone is better than they are and that they're not worth anything. Some people think they have nothing to offer, no skills or talents, no ideas or thoughts worth sharing. That's not how God sees us either.

1 John 3:1 says, " See what great love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God!"

 1 Peter 2:9 says, "But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God’s special possession, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light."

And 1 Peter 4:10 adds, "God has given each of you a gift from his great variety of spiritual gifts. Use them well to serve one another."

We are children of God and He considers us to be His special possession. Not only that, He has gifted each one of us with a special ability so that we might serve others in His name. So rather than thinking we are worthless and unimportant, we must remember that God values us enough to have sent Jesus to be our Savior. He considers us worthy of that great price.
In God's eyes, we're all something special |
The challenge, of course, is in maintaining the proper balance between humility and acknowledging our worth. I think Romans 12:3 is the key, "Do not think of yourself more highly than you ought, but rather think of yourself with sober judgment, in accordance with the faith God has distributed to each of you." Think of yourself with sober judgement. In other words, consider carefully all the facts. Acknowledge your faults and your need of a Savior, but do not become so hard on yourself that you forget that God has called you His own.

In His eyes, we're all "something special!"

March 12, 2022

Shining Through in Citified

Welcome to my stop on the Citified blog tour, celebrating Sherry's new signature line with Island Batik. If this is your first time here, then an extra welcome to you!

One of the fun things about being a quilt pattern designer is seeing the patterns I design made in different colours and that's what I've done with my Shining Through pattern. The original quilt has a navy background and yellow bars, so with this version I chose a light background and purples and blues for the bars. The Shining Through pattern is available in my Etsy shop.
Shining Through quilt pattern |
Shining Through is a fun quilt to make. It stitches up quickly, there are only a few points to match up and the relatively large squares can really show off the fabrics. I designed it to use in a beginners quilting class, so it's perfect for beginners! See the quilts my beginning quilters made in this post.

Aren't these prints in the Citified line fabulous? I especially love that dark blue with the circles/bubbles.
Shining Through quilt pattern |
We have a lot of snow right now, so my friend Jessica and I took the quilt top on a snowshoe trek through the woods last weekend. It was a wonderful way to spend part of a Sunday afternoon. It was a little windy at times, though!
Shining Through quilt pattern |
A Shining Through quilt top makes a good flag!
Shining Through quilt pattern |
I haven't decided yet how I want to quilt this one, so it's just sitting while I ponder the possibilities. My first one I quilted with straight lines with my walking foot, since that was what I taught the class to do. This time I'll definitely be doing free motion quilting, but the specifics are not coming together yet.

The Shining Through pattern is available as a PDF or a printed pattern (with free shipping!)

Check out all the other fun projects my follow blog hop quilters are making with the Citified line:

March 07, 2022

Following Blindly

 Isn’t it amazing how you can almost always identify the decade a picture was taken by the hairstyle or fashion of the person in the picture? We humans do love to follow the trends, don’t we? That’s all well and good when we’re talking about the length of someone’s hair or the shape of their glasses, but not so much when we’re talking about sin.

The prophet Isaiah summed it up perfectly when he wrote, “All of us, like sheep, have strayed away. We have left God’s paths to follow our own” (Isaiah 53:6). Sheep don’t pay attention to where they’re going, they just follow the sheep in front of them. Unfortunately, we are very much like sheep, just as Isaiah said. Even more unfortunately, the lead sheep we have all been following is Adam (and Eve – why does she not get more blame?) and they wandered far off the path they were supposed to be on. Then we, just like sheep, followed blindly after.

Thankfully, God knows all about sheep, both the actual sheep and the human ones. He knows that we need a shepherd to follow. Ezekiel wrote, “For this is what the Sovereign LORD says: I myself will search and find my sheep. I will be like a shepherd looking for his scattered flock” (Ezekiel 34:11-12). Then Jesus said, “I am the good shepherd” (John 10:11).

If we follow Jesus, we'll be going the right way |

We may be sheep, prone to going astray and following the wrong path, but Jesus is our shepherd. If we follow Him, we’ll be going the right way.

March 02, 2022

My 9th Blogging Anniversary (and a Sale)!

Nine years ago today I hit publish on my first blog post. It's funny how two things can be simultaneously true - it feels like just yesterday and I can hardly remember a time when I wasn't thinking about writing blog posts. I've learned so much since I published that first post! I've learned a ton of technology related skills, to start with, though I'm still grateful for my husband and brother with their superior tech knowledge so they can bail me out when I'm lost.

Starting this blog connected me to an online quilting community I didn't even know existed and I love, love, love this community! I love having quilty friends who understand the joys of finding gorgeous fabric, cutting it into small pieces and then sewing it up into something new. I also love the constant inspiration, though it does mean the list of quilts I dream of making is several miles long and grows more every day. I'll never reach the end of it, but I'm having fun trying.
cupcakes and quilts |
Without this blog, I never would have started a quilt pattern business or started teaching workshops through Zoom. Both of them bring me so much joy and I'm so glad I get to play work at something I enjoy so much. It's hard to beat hearing quilters get excited about the new technique they're learning in a workshop or seeing pictures of a quilt someone made with one of my patterns. Please, please tag me if you share a picture of a quilt made with my pattern! It makes my day every single time!

An anniversary pattern sale has become my favourite way to celebrate (though the cupcakes I made for these pictures are pretty good, too!) 😊 From now through Monday, March 7th, save 20% off all PDF and print patterns, no coupon code needed. Free shipping still applies to print patterns, too. If you're a subscriber to The Bulletin, be sure to check your inbox for a code for an additional discount!

Shop the anniversary sale!

cupcakes and quilts |

Thanks for being part of this online quilting community. Writing blog posts and quilt patterns wouldn't be nearly as much fun if I was hanging out here by myself!