Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Dear friends,
I think that July is that quintessential patriotic month for all of us in the U.S. We all look forward to July 4th and get out our flag shirts--for Teri it is an entire closet of red, white, and blue wear--and prepare our barbeques. This year in Ogden there were so many fireworks that we ended up going up to the foothills behind us and watching the display spread out all over the entire valley. It was pretty neat. Then we came home and Christian did street fireworks with neighbors out in front--lots of fountains and screamers--but also plenty of applause. In Utah, however, the fun does not end there. We also celebrate July 24th as sort of our state's founders' day marking the entrance of the early Mormon pioneers into the Salt Lake Valley. There is still this continuation of patriotism oddly mixed--at least in Ogden--with Pioneer Days which seems to encompass everything from week long rodeos, western shoot-outs--which can come upon you downtown at any unexpected moment--parades, and of course more fireworks. Our 24th of July parade has always been the high point of Teri's year. She and Nancy go to her favorite spot 2 days ahead of time and block off our area, and then she drives past it hundreds of times in the next few days to make sure no one has moved it. No one ever has yet, and by the 23rd, all of downtown Ogden is covered with tape, and blankets, and chairs. On the morning of the parade, we congregate early and Teri brings tons of treats and cold drinks. Then everyone comes and brings their friends and their friends bring friends--and it is so much fun. Beyond the 100 degree plus heat, the parade is somewhat frightening, but that is part of the true joy: everything from fire trucks, school marching bands, elderly Pioneer Queens, Shriners on motorized magic carpets and always a plethora of horses. Everyone shouts and claps and the kids scramble for candy. And then we all go home for a nap. Baby Reed was the star this year arriving in his cowboy get up.

And Anna and Ellie share the shade from an umbrella.

Teri thinks I am a spoil sport, but I confess, I am not so sad to see July waning. I don't mind--after 30 days of mind-numbing fun--bidding goodbye to the horses, the cowboys, and the heat.
On the other hand, it is nice and cool here at Shepherd's Bush and we have loved welcoming many a traveler into our tiny sanctuary. We have been busy getting our new market stuff put together and sent off, and we have been busy re-decorating the front of the shop. Teri has had a great time making her various collections for the main displays and we have gone through a wonderful patriotic display, a darling bee/beehive display, and a sweet summer collection. Now we are on the brink of starting on Halloween. Yippee!!!
A wonderful new piece from La D Dah is Live, Love, Laugh. We used 3 beautiful colours of overdyed silk to stitch this with, and I think it is a treasure. It actually works up quite quickly, making it a perfect summer project.

Speaking of quick and simple projects, Nancy's Lord's Prayer by My Big Toe would not be one of those. However it is simply spectacular. She brought it in to show us after she picked it up from Jill, and we have been lucky enough to keep it for a few days. Don't you think that it is such a beautiful piece. I love the colours she chose to use, and I think that whoever gets it is going to be thrilled.

I think that super stitcher Nancy has also finished her Lizzie Kate Boo Club as I saw her and Teri picking out buttons. So be watching for us to show it to you when it is finished. I have to say that it is fabulous. But speaking of that, I have to mention L.K's newest Double Flip Series--Merry Christmas--which our friend Judy is working on for us. I know that the original cheerful colours are darling, but when you see the more quiet, old-fashioned colours that Teri has chosen, you will faint--so be sure you are near a couch. I just can't believe how lovely it is turning out and I know that she is choosing a different set of buttons for it as well. She has also picked out a perfect hand-dyed linen to stitch it on. I actually have no idea what the fabric or the colours are, but if you order any of it, I know she will change it for you as well.

Our friend, Diane, has some new things to go along with her popular thread spinners. Everyone here at the shop has loved them, so I need to share them with you. Her newest collection includes: Needle Nannies, Thread Winders, and Scissor Minders. Each one is exquisitely hand-crafted and lovely and serves such a delightful purpose in your sewing box. I am sure you will enjoy them.

I know that there is more I haven't told you, but I am just sending this off to you and I will write again next week. I hope that you can find a way to stay cool this week and that your evenings are pleasant. Be safe and stitchful.
fondly, Tina