Sunday, December 28, 2008

Happy Moo Year!

The next year is just a few days away, and CPLG is going to be giving away a surprise each month. I've been thinking about the new year with Rose Colored Glasses if you'll excuse the mixed metaphor, so let's go with the grass is always greener on the other side! Now greener can have all kinds of meanings, and one that I certainly hope applies will be the reusing of wonderful items. I call it upcycling(now) when the idea was new to me it was called recycling, and in the olde days, there was a saying "Use it up, Use it Out or Do without". So while the words change and the ideas transform, a good trait(thrifty ~ use/reuse of things with value) endures.

To kick off our year of giving, I'm offering a cow which I hope will bring you a year of prosperity. It is made from a "cutter quilt" in the pattern known as Grandmother's Flower Garden. This one seems unusual to me in the use of the brown fabrics. It immediately suggested cows to me. How now brown cow, and all that jazz...

To win this cow is simple. Leave a positive comment about one of the two following topics.

  1. upcycling
  2. coming new year

How easy is that? Well, honestly, if you are not a member of cplg it gets even more probable!!!
I'll draw from available names, with a preference for non group members. If none exist, then ladies in the group will be most likely to win! I'll need to ship this item to the winner, so if you are interested, please keep reading the blog for an announcement. Winner to be chosen on January 15th, the last day of our Valentine Launch. Y'all make a comment on the CPLG BLOG at and come on back now! Here and there!!!

Please note, the comments must be left on CPLG blog to qualify for the giveaway!

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

One Year Ends and Another Begins!

Although it is just a little over a week until the end of this year, my CPLG(Country Primitive Ladies Group) is planning a launch of handmade Valentine Treasures beginning in Early January. It may actually be more like the 2nd or 3rd than the 1st ;). But one of the more productive members could have something up by New Year's Eve as far as that goes!

I'm planning to do a couple of Makedo s with old doorknobs or bedsprings, and some embellished hearts in wool, so if that sort of thing appeals to you please check our listings. I plan to switch my ebay id from SwimminginFabric, to CottonEyedJo if that is available, so that my name will be the same at Ebay and Etsy. I've loved my old username, it so tells the truth about my sewing room, but I plan to keep using my templates, so you may still be able to find me under either name... Hope you'll drop by, and check out our Tokens of Love!

Sunday, November 30, 2008

I won an award

Thank you, Debbie of Sweet Country Blessings for the award you have given my blog. Glad you enjoy it. Jo

The rules of this award are: * Put the logo on your blog or post.* Nominate at least 5 blogs(can be more) that for you are Uber Amazing!* Let them know that they have received this Uber Amazing award by commenting on their blog.*" Share the love and link to this post and to the person you received your award from."

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Dreams of NEXT summer's tomatoes

One of the things I absolutely love/hate about the internet is the randomness of how you may find something of interest to you. Now that I'm retired, the time factor isn't as pressing so the love part is stronger.

As a kid, my grandfather always had a huge garden, as did one of our neighbors. So summer meant delicious tomatoes right off the vine. Just bringing the tomato to your mouth was great with that fragrance of the vines on your hands and arms. I could just wander off in memoryland about summer picnics, lightening bugs, and so forth but either you have your own great memories triggered by tomatoes or you don't. Reruns of mine won't replace actual ones.

I also remember sitting with Grandpa Bill while there was snow piled high in the yard, while he perused the seed catalogs in January, planning for the garden the following summer. Although gardening can be hard work, it has it's own natural rewards.

The links below take you to an excellent gardening blog where there is a linkie to the heirloom tomato company. If you stumble across this post, I've semi organized them. The blog has a great section telling about the tomatoes she actually planted. Great descriptions of the way most of us evaluate them called the Beauty Pageant. If you live somewhere where the snow piles high in the winter, just reading the descriptions will make the time until you can start your garden seem shorter.

The heirloom seed company order list was 13 pages long with more or less 10 per page ~ on our printer. Imagine having that many choices over the 2 or 3 at the grocery store! We are gonna have to try at least a couple next year. Since we live in TX, I'll be looking for some that are drought resistant...

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Artisans of Houston

We are now calling our mini team Artisans of Houston. Which is a great name for a terrific group of gals! Our new blog is up and running...check out my bloglist at the left. There will be a list of upcoming events for various team members, links to their shops and all of us will have the ability to post to the blog. Members who have their own blog will decide whether or not to link you to their blog and so on... There are so many opportunities to kill a day at the 'puter.

Friday, June 27, 2008

First Meeting for Houston Mini Team of Etsy Texas Crafters

Last night, six of us met to discuss plans for an active Houston area Etsy mini team. We will be setting up a blog for our team, once we've chosen a long term name for it. Some of the ideas discussed were having a trunk show, participating in some of the local art fairs, and an open house in one of the members homes. We will be meeting again on July 17 th. If you are a member of the Texas Crafters Team on Etsy and interested in more details, please leave a comment.

Friday, May 23, 2008

What Kind of Flower are You?

This is fun! Try it and find your flower.
I am a

What Flower
Are You?

which means:
"Mischief is your middle name, but your first is friend. You are quite the prankster that loves to make other people laugh."

Wanda's Wanderings

Monday, May 12, 2008

PayPal isn't the only online money exchange

If you are interested in online exchange of money without the PayPal fees, click on the Revolution Money Exchange button at the upper left of my blog. You can get a $25. credit, and I'll earn $10 for recruiting you. You do have to give the same kinds of private personal information such as your birthdate, and social security # to set up your account. Just as you would for a bank account. This is partly to prevent terrorists from using false identities to set up accounts. Thanks! I've opened my account but haven't hooked it to a bank account yet. I believe in honesty so there it is... Jo

Saturday, April 19, 2008

CPLG also means couplings

Life brings many surprises! If you search our cplg listings, you find an assortment of parts for plumbing? cars? lol These listings mix in with ours because in the men's shorthand, cplg means couplings! We enjoy the eclectic surprise of discovering these primitive listings mixed in with ours on ebay.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Beautiful Rugs

This is a slideshow posted by one of the ladies in one of my groups. One look and I hope you'll understand why rug hooking is so addictive! Most of these rugs are primitive, and the colors, patterns, and designs, are all so different!!!! Please do not copy these designs, as the idea belongs to someone else. It is either a commercial pattern or someone's original. Either way, it is not nice to steal someone else's ideas...

Hope your week is going well!

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

5 things you don't know about me....

Thanks, for the tag Leanne! Hmmmm, I could type many things about myself, but the truth is most of it is just not that interesting.

1. I've been a teacher for 35 years, but started the job 40 years ago. (1968)
2. I didn't learn to drive until after getting married... my dh taught me.
3. Couldn't back up a car with a trailer hitched to the back of it if the lives of everyone dear to me depended on it. Some dyslexic brain thingie of overthinking which way to turn the steering wheel.
4. My favorite flowers don't grow in the state where we live, or at least not near where we live...lilacs, forsythia, peonies, all need much colder weather than Houston gets in the winter.
5. Students from my first year as a teacher are now in their 50s! I had this little revelation myself in the shower a morning or two ago...

Saturday, April 5, 2008

Tagbacks may or may not be allowed!

Last Friday night it was a Food Fight in the library over at etsy, and daily it is my delight to enjoy the friendship of these ladies! I can't imagine life without you. You definitely make my day. This tag is supposed to be about how you chose your business name. debbie :) marissa :) pat :) janna :)
leanne :) teresa :)
mo :)
Namarie is a beautiful but sad poem written by JRRTolkein. One of the groups I belong to on ebay has a group learning to speak Quenya the more formal Elvish dialect. Just found Aragorn singing in Quenya, so this is my gift to Elvish students!

Monday, March 31, 2008

Tags Old and New Meanings of words...

In the "old days" tags were little piece of scratchy cloth sewn in as a label to tell about product care or the brand name of items. Now-a-days a tag is a great way to find connections with others of similar interests. Tags are a search term, or of course can be lovely awards from a friend.

I was actually tagged twice today. The first tag I knew about was from my friend Debbie, of Simple Country Blessings, and it is a question to be answered. "How did you decide on your business name?" Cottoneyedjo Cotton Eyed Jo is how I signed the most recent wedding quilt given as a gift. The quilt was a TX version of one of my favorite quilt patterns that combines a star block and a snowball block. It is usually called Tennessee Waltz. But this quilt was made for a TX couple and filled with bluebonnet fabrics. So I renamed it, "Texas Two Step" Now if you are familiar with this popular dance, you probably also know the song "Cotton Eyed Joe". Since my nickname is Jo, I LOVE Cotton(wool, chenille,etc) it was a natural. My ebay user name is also well deserved. Over there I'm known as swimminginfabric! If you saw my sewing room, (and you won't!) you might agree with one of my quilting bee members who said, I really should have called myself drowninginfabric! LOL I truly have a TX sized stash!

My second tag was from another dear friend, and the only commenter at my blog so far. Betty of PrimitiveBettys. ;) She is the leader of our PRHG group on ebay, a prolific creative spirit, and one of the most generous hearts, I've ever encountered. She gave me a "you make my day tag", which I discovered when reading her comment! Thanks Betty! You make my day regularily!

Monday, March 24, 2008

I won't get to swim for awhile yet...

It is still too cold to start doing laps, but in the past, I participated in a swim program that helped me improve my health. This year I will try to swim my age [;)] in miles. I will have to swim a mile a day once I've worked up to that, for that many days in a row. I use a snorkle, and don't do sprints, but it is time to get real about getting rid of some of the excess I can enjoy our granddaughter more and hopefully live longer to be there for all those in my life who say that is what they want.

Sunday, March 16, 2008

Rug Hookers with Hearts of Gold!

Although Primitive Rug Hookers Group started on ebay, they now have a blogsite that can help you to find connections to blogs, websites, etc about rughookers and from there to their own etsy stores or ebay listings in many cases. Other listing venues may be represented as well.

For those of us who are members of virtual communities(even at grandma age) the friendships we forge are powerful. Connections that cut through the limitations that geography or time would normally restrain. We know the family stories of others we have never been in the same room with in a physical sense. We laugh, cry, pray, and care about the things happening to each other. Love pics of the pets we share, try recipes vouched for by "virtual" friends, and frequently advise each other about the artwork we produce.

I am blessed by these friendships, and no matter the time of day or night, can forget my own problems and marvel at the fun a connection to the internet can bring. Jo

Monday, March 10, 2008

Grandma 101

Not that this will be a revelation to most readers, but being a grandma is a wonderful experience.

Our granddaughter was born on February 29, and Go Texan Day! ;) That is especially great as she is the first native Texan in our family. Birthday parties can be extra fun on Leap Years, and I imagine lots of little frog motifs may spring up here and there.

Sunday, February 17, 2008

Ebay boycott, Etsy Group A few of our EBAY group have migrated on over to I am going to participate in the ebay boycott this week, but will be returning to ebay later.

If you are an artist of handmade items, and are not considering selling on etsy, I'd encourage you to give it a look and a try. Listing, revising are very simple, and much less expensive. Learning a new selling venue can be challenging, but hey, if you're taking the week off from ebay, why not spend part of that time setting up your new shop on

If you are walking on thin ice, why not dance?

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Etsy is easy to use

I've listed a few items on etsy this weekend to learn how to use it. On EBAY my CPLG group is starting a launch of Easter bunny themed items today and throughout this week. Now I need to settle in and do some work for my day job!

Monday, February 4, 2008

Working on a Big Honking Rug!

Right now, my crafting minutes are being used to work on a pictorial rug as a challenge for members of Primitive Rug Hooking Group on ebay. My rug is coming right along, and sometime after our first deadline(February 29th) I may put a picture of it here on my blog. Until then we are NOT supposed to show it to anyone!

Can't decide what to do for the background. Have thought about making it look like notebook paper sheets. Only problem with that would be white background is gonna get grimy pretty quick if it actually hits the floor. We don't have one of those lovely homes done is multiple shades of white.

We do have an indoor waterfall, and two kitties, Bob and Kirby Kat. Kirby looks a bit like this:

Friday, January 25, 2008

A Quilter can love wool 2! Primitive Rug Hooking Group

This is my first attempt at blogging, so it should get better. For years, I've called myself a Nike quilter 'cause I just do it. Sometimes better than others, and let's face it, my quilts are better viewed at a distance. But I do know after 35 years as a teacher, that practice makes progress even when it doesn't make perfect.

Lately (for the last year or so) I've switched over to Rug Hooking with my crafting time. I can budget my time by allotting myself so many worms before the rest of my homework has to be done. Like, I can hook 4 worms, and then back to paper grading! Papers are like laundry or the dishes, no matter how many are finished, there are more to replace them. PRHG is an ebay group that is simply the greatest thing going. I also belong to another group of dear hearts CPLG which stands for Country and Primitive Ladies Group. Both of these groups of ladies I'll probably never be in the same room with are dear friends. Perhaps I too am better view at a distance.

Hope you'll be patient, it may be weeks before I think to blog again. Like anyone but me will be reading this! Cotton Eyed Jo