Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Time To Trim the Tree


Last year I dedicated December to the Seasonal Songs. This year I would like to dedicate the month to the history of the Christmas Tree. Let's start with some history:

The Egyptians were part of a long line of cultures that treasured and worshipped evergreens. When the winter solstice arrive, they brought green date palm leaves into their homes to symbolize life's triumph over death.
The Romans celebrated the winter solstice with a fest called Saturnalia in honor of Saturnus, the god of agriculture. They decorated their houses with greens and lights and exchanged gifts. They gave coins for prosperity, pastries for happiness, and lamps to light one's journey through life. Centuries ago in Great Britain, woods priests called Druids used evergreens during mysterious winter solstice rituals. The Druids used holly and mistletoe as symbols of eternal life, and place evergreen branches over doors to keep away evil spirits. Late in the Middle Ages, Germans and Scandinavians placed evergreen trees inside their homes or just outside their doors to show their hope in the forthcoming spring. Purhaps our modern Christmas tree evolved from these early traditions?


SWAPS


Some lovely Spool Blocks from Vanessa for the Austalian 6" block swap.


And this wonderful candle mat from Danette. We waited till each had our package and opened them the same day. Made this last swap special.


And this is the candle mat I made for her - photo taken from her blog as I forgot to do it.

BLOCKS


Not the best photo, but the November block for the Blogger's BOM. I did change it up from theirs as it was too busy - this is busy enough!


And my version of the wreath block for the Christmas Sampler Quilt Along. I just can't do (or like) machine applique - making blocks with tiny bits is more my style. I will add some beads, metallic threads, and bow with quilting. Today I think is the last block, so I left my few scraps of seasonal fabric out to play.


Not really a block, but a quilt along - Clover & Violet's 'Ruby Tote'. Making the lining step. I did change my pockets to meet the needs of what I carry to class/guild.

MINUTES FOR ME


I made this cute holder for my plastic grocery bags. I looked at some tutorials on-line and then did my own. Used some left over charms from a Marcus Brother line. Recycled some ribbon and lining is a recycled shirt, alpha letter wood beads (don't want this walking out the door), and a button.


And I started to do a little decorating. That's my tree! I only do my mantel. I hung my candle mat until I get the embroidered banner finished, then I can set up the side table. The Advent piece is old - made with a pre-printed panel when my daughter was 2 or 3 - she's 30 yrs. old now. And I don't do ladders well, so it will stay hanging crooked. LOL!!

I will be linking up with Marcia's CraftySewing blog for her Minutes For Me this week.


REMINDERS

Still time to link up with Darlene at SewCalGal for the Christmas Quilt Show.

Be sure to visit Sew We Quilt as December will be filled with quick project tutorials. Need an idea for a quick gift - pop on over.


TRAVELING STASH

Box # 1 - on it's way to Growing Stitches

Box # 2 - Kelbysews is ready to move this box on. She is leaving comments open until Dec 9th, so pop over and good luck.

Box # 3 - PhillysBlarney is ready to move this box on. She is leaving comments open until Dec 4th, so head on over and good luck.


GIVE AWAY WINNER


Remember those 600 pre-cut blocks? Well I gave my list of names to the neighbor who doesn't know Blogger from Adam and she chose Gmamma Jane. I will send seperate e-mail for information so I can get this right out. Thank you all for participating - the New Year may hit the 200 post mark!

CLOSING THOUGHT

One little star on the top of the tree,
Two little presents underneath for me,
Three silver ropes twisted around the tree,
Four colored lights shining prettily,
Five shining balls flowing silvery.
Oh, what a sight for use to see!
- ANON

Sewingly Yours,
Sharon


20 comments:

  1. You are constantly going from one type of project to another...such variety...love the mats and your mantel!

    ReplyDelete
  2. Sharon lovely post and those 2 candle mats are unreal,well done ladies.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Both candle mats are wonderful.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Love the history lesson. Your candle mats are beautiful and I love that wreath block too!!

    ReplyDelete
  5. Sharon, those candle mats are great. I'm sure you enjoyed the swap.
    Love the plastic grocery bag holder, I need to make a new one.

    ReplyDelete
  6. Beautiful show n tell! I especially like the candle mat you made for Dannette, is there a pattern for that block?

    Your bag holder is cute, I need to make myself one.

    ReplyDelete
  7. I really like your Christmas wreath block

    ReplyDelete
  8. A lovely post - full of your great projects and snippets of information.

    ReplyDelete
  9. I really love both candle mats.

    ReplyDelete
  10. Ooh such pretties! I love your candle mat and wreath!

    ReplyDelete
  11. Love all the projects. Congratulations to the winner!

    ReplyDelete
  12. As usual, lots of fun things going on at your house! The holder for your grocery bags is festive! Love your candle mats!

    ReplyDelete
  13. every thing looks great. you sure are one busy gal!

    ReplyDelete
  14. Love both candle mats! Great job! Whoop Whoop you have been so busy!

    ReplyDelete
  15. It's looking a lot like Christmas at your house. :)

    ReplyDelete
  16. Love the candle mats - cool that you each waited to open on the same day! and the Christmas wreath is really cool!
    Thanks for linking up to the Minutes for Me Party with your version of the grocery bag holder with the charm pack! Love it!
    Enjoy your day!

    ReplyDelete
  17. Whoop whoop!! I'm always amazed by your piecing skills - particularly that candle mat you made!!!

    ReplyDelete
  18. This was a lovely post. My first read now that I am back home in blog land. Welcome Christmas! I am afraid that you may have to do something different with your ornaments than hang them on that tree :)

    ReplyDelete
  19. Hi Sharon, Love your mats and all your x-stitch. I'm wondering if you make larger My Collection x-stitches for the pins. I have one I got from your Mom and would love a larger one. I'm running out of room on this one..lol
    Diana in East Tn. Say hi to your Mom for me and a Happy Holiday.

    ReplyDelete