Handmade Gifts for Christmas

cloth napkins.JPG

So I have these ideas to sew for Christmas this year.  The above photo is one such idea.

My husband and I just love using cloth napkins with our meals at home. Sometimes guests think we’re being a little too “fancy” when I bring out the cloth napkins.  But here’s our rationale:

                Me:  I think cloth napkins add just a touch of elegance.  And I just like them! 

                My husband: He says they just clean better than paper towels.

Regardless our reasons, we both enjoy using cloth napkins at home.  So, I thought I would start sewing some for gifts.  The green ones were my first set and I love them so much (and my dining room is green) I think I may keep them for myself!

This sounds like Christmas shopping doesn’t it?  It always amazes me that when I’m on a mission to shop for others, I find all kinds of things I need, ugh want.

Well, I digress!  I bought about 4 sets of fat quarters recently with the idea of making cloth napkins for gifts this year.  (I can’t mention for whom just in case they read my blog!) This made sewing these up a snap AND it offers 5 in the set rather than the typical 4.  I had considered giving the sets as only 4 and then having a set with one of all 4 colors.  But, again, I like them so well that I just may keep this set of 5 for myself.

Here’s how I made them:

1.       First, wash the fabric before sewing.

2.       Iron each fat quarter out smooth.

3.       Turn down one of the shorter ends about 1 inch and finger press.

4.       Then iron the 1-inch fold to form a definite press.

5.       Fold the raw edge into the pressed line and iron on the fold.  This creates a smooth seam with the raw edges safely tucked inside that seam.

6.       Pin along the seam.

7.       Repeat on the opposite side. (The other shorter end.)

8.       Then do the same on both of the longer sides.

9.       Go to the machine and straight stitch all four sides removing your pins as you go.

10.   Don’t forget to backstitch in the corners.

Now you, too, can enjoy some cloth napkins at your table and/or have some handmade gifts ready for that next special occasion!

Happy sewing!

Sewing and Serving

portpillows Sew...what's your hobby? I have a lot, but one of my hobbies is sewing. And I have recently been in the mood to sew, but I don't have any particular project I'm working on.

You gotta love Pinterest and YouTube, right! While I was looking for ideas to appease my mood for sewing, I ran across port pillows.  These are small pillows that will gently cover an infusaport for patients who have those implanted in their chest.

Often times an infusaport is related to cancer treatment, but may be for other medical conditions as well.  In the basket above are 28 small heart-shaped, square or rectangular pillows that can be put on one's chest under a seat belt in the car for pain/discomfort relief.  Small pillows like this may help offset pain after mastectomies or other chest surgeries and can be used under the arm of the affected side.

I decided to make some pillows and donate them to a local cancer center to hopefully meet a need, both physical and spiritual.  The pillow will help offset physical pain or discomfort and the gospel tract will offer hope for salvation.

Who knows, maybe someone will give their life to Jesus because they were introduced to Him while in a time of need.  At the very least, a seed has been planted!

But now we have been released from the Law, having died to that by which we were bound, so that we serve in newness of the Spirit and not in oldness of the letter.   Romans 7:6
What's you hobby?  Is it something you can use to serve others?  I'll just be it is!

DIY Craze


If you have access to HGTV, you know there is a real "do it yourself" or "DIY" craze these days.  Well, I've joined the band wagon.  I have a lot of old outdoor furniture that we have enjoyed for years.

As you can see above, the sun, wind and rain have certainly tarnished my furniture.  But they all still sit well and serve their purpose.  I think I have about 25 seats in total, counting chairs and swings that are on my deck.  (10 of the, now, blue chairs and 5 of the, now, black chairs are complete as seen above.)  I also have 6 chairs with cushions that a friend just made slip covers for in a fabric of gray and blue. (I forgot to take before and after photos of those, but they look great!)

When it's all said and done, my new old furnishings will be black, blue and gray. The umbrellas which I purchased last year for the tables are the same shade of blue as the blue chairs. Exciting!  And, yes, I will show the final "After" picture in a week or two.

As exciting as it's been to see my own DIY projects transform, I can't help but think about the transformation Jesus makes in our lives.  Thankfully, the changes He brings is from the inside out.  He doesn't just "paint over" the old you to make you look better; He creates a new you when He gives you a new heart filled with the Holy Spirit!

The change Jesus brings is even more refreshing than my newly painted old furnishings.   Jesus makes a radical, lasting change when He creates you anew.

If you've never experienced the saving grace of Jesus Christ, you can right now.

The Bible says, "that if you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved; 10 for with the heart a person believes, resulting in righteousness, and with the mouth he confesses, resulting in salvation. 11 For the Scripture says, “Whoever believes in Him will not be disappointed.” 12 For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek; for the same Lord is Lord of all, abounding in riches for all who call on Him; 13 for “Whoever will call on the name of the Lord will be saved.”    Romans 10:9-13 (NASB)

If you just prayed and received Jesus as Lord, congratulations!!  You have just made THE most important decision of your life!  Welcome to the FAMILY! Now, TELL someone,  start reading the New Testament in the Holy Bible, join a Bible believing church and be baptized.  Baptism is publically telling the world that you have died to yourself and are now raised in new life with Jesus Christ.

If you have already been made new, take a minute and thank Him!

Blessings to you, Wendy

P.S. My favorite version of the Bible is the New American Standard Bible (NASB).