Monthly Archives: November 2015



making a list and …

He’s making a list

and checking it twice,

He’s gonna find out

who’s naughty or nice …

And he’s …

… waiting for you …

at an adorable website called where your child can write to Santa and get a personalized video and written reply all the way from the North Pole.

With just a few clicks, your child sends an e-mail letter to Santa with her first name, age, city, and her top three Christmas wishes. Then the fun begins.

First, you’ll hear Santa and his elves talking about your child (be sure to turn up your volume so you can understand the “Elvish” chatter), then Santa appears in a cute video, calling your child by name, and talking about Christmas preparations at the North Pole. Then you get a personalized letter on your screen that even discusses your wish-list items. After printing your letter, you can opt into a parents-only portion of the site that allows you to upload a photo of your Christmas tree and insert a photo of Santa into it, then help Santa write a personalized thank-you note to your child for the snacks she left him. You then print out the thank you and leave it for your child to discover on Christmas morning.

All this without divulging any personal information … you don’t even have to input your e-mail address. Kids and adults alike will get a kick out of this new twist on writing to Santa. While you’re there, be sure to check out “The Santa Tracker” and “The Santa Snooper” North Pole web cam. You can also listen to the elves read “The Night Before Christmas,” read Santa’s blogs, see Santa’s magic photo album, and more … your pet can even send her own message to Rudolph.

Ho, ho, ho.


Arf, arf, arf.

photo by Sadie Hart via



poetry in motion

Just because it’s so daggum, mind-bendingly pretty:

It’s a kinetic sculpture by artist Derek Hugger, who says, “I have a passion for mechanisms and an insatiable urge to solve mechanical puzzles. I like to sweat the details.”

Reminds me of an old-fashioned clock, somehow, only the inner parts are the feature attraction. And it’s a hummingbird, hovering.

Tripping the art fantastic, wouldn’t you agree?

Check out more of Derek’s sculptures here.



Quilting Merit Badge, Intermediate Level

The adorable, always humorous MBA Jane is my way of honoring our Sisterhood Merit Badge program, now with 6,760 dues-paying members who have earned an amazing number of merit badges so far—9,508 total! Take it away, MBA Jane!!! MJ 

Wondering who I am? I’m Merit Badge Awardee Jane (MBA Jane for short). In my former life   

For this week’s Stitching and Crafting/Quilting Intermediate Level Merit Badge, I hadn’t planned on spending my week on a sewing project, but my sewing machine had other ideas.

You see, I normally like to get down with my crafty self during the chilly winter months, my socked feet resting by the fire, as I sip hot tea and watch the sun set at like, 3 p.m. Summertime, I normally reserve for glamping and fishing and hiking and identifying trees, and other such warm-weather activities.

But at times, my sewing machine reminds me who is boss (hint: it ain’t me). And basically, the cute little Singer can smell fear.

So, if I plan a big sewing project, the needle will bust, the thread will fray, the scissors will disappear, the price of fabric will go up, the gears will grind to a halt … well, you get the picture.

Hence, why I’m quilting in summer. The machine was stitching beautifully when I got it out to hem a quick skirt, and all was right with the world, so I bailed on my outdoor plans and here I sit.

Piecing and quilting (and sweating in my fuzzy socks. Really regretting the fire. Didn’t think that through appropriately).

For my Intermediate Level merit badge, I had to “pick up the pace and try a harder project than my Beginning Level project, and try a new pattern that taxes my sewing ability and makes me reach new heights.”

Whew! I’m nervous just thinking about it.

Today, Celestial Star, tomorrow the world …

Actually, forget Celestial Star. That looks hard. Let’s try Spiral Geese. Hm. Also difficult.

I wasn’t reaching new heights as much as I was stressing myself out. Okay, we’re going with ZigZag Love. I can do this! ZigZag is my middle name.

In order to earn my badge though, I needed a 20-hour time commitment (Pshaw. No worries there. At the rate I’m going, it’ll take me 20 years to complete this thing.) and a friend to sew with me.

I asked Midge, but she was skeptical of my roaring, cozy fire and said her fuzzy socks were in the wash. (Who’s skeptical now? Me, that’s who.) So I dialed up my pal, Judy.

Wait. Does anyone actually dial the phone anymore? Isn’t that kind of like “rolling up the window?” I didn’t technically dial then, I texted.

R U up 4 a needle luvin good time?

Who is this? I don’t do drugs.

Hahaha, lol! It’s me, Jane “ZigZag,” the Quilt Master.

Ah. Lemme guess: you’re sitting in front of a fire, watching Christmas flicks in summer, huh?

Yup. Get over here.

I’ll bring the eggnog.

quilting_2065It’s good to have friends who gets ya. Judy and I spent all weekend sewing and crafting to our little heart’s content. At the end of my 20 hours, I had a complete ZigZag Love quilt top and was considering changing my street name to Celestial Star Janey.



Hear Ye!

Welcome New Sisters! (click for current roster)

Merit Badge Awardees (click for latest awards)

My featured Merit Badge Awardee of the Week is … Sherrilyn Askew!!!

Sherrilyn Askew (Sherri, #1350) has received a certificate of achievement in Cleaning Up for earning an Expert Level Shopping Green Merit Badge!

“Last year, I spoke with my new-to-me chapter about having a bag swap and the importance of reusable bags (I was preaching to the choir). This November, we were finally able to have our sew-in and do a bag swap (YEAH!).

We had fun!!!!! We originally started with 7 people and 1 virtual member for our bag swap, so I tie dyed 8 canvas bags with blackberries. Due to attrition, we only had 4 people in the swap, but I made pockets for all the bags anyway.


The bags were barely dry and had no pockets when my daughter decided which one was going to be hers (I still need to complete the pocket). Using some of my hand-dyed fabrics from another badge, I made pockets and stitched them onto the bags. I then flipped the bags over and using dyer’s crayons, stenciled a bug on the back side of each bag.

MaryJane sent our chapter several blank canvas bags that we have since proceeded to decorate. I made a pocket for one of the blue and white bags. Watch the mail, as no swap is complete until you receive a bag in return.”