Tuesday, December 23, 2008


Because I don't have enough to do. HA!
Because Lorelei, who is here for Christmas, wanted to go to the yarn shop.
Because I couldn't resist the beautiful hand dyed teal Alpaca yarn.
Because Lorelei thought teaching me to knit would be fun.
Because I have always wanted to knit a sweater.

Well, we are driving to Virginia in 2 days and I don't have a quilt project that is in good "travel" stage. So.... why not.

Here was my first lesson. I casted on, knitted and purled, and it looked okay!
So now I will start knitting with my new lovely yarn. I really don't have any time to start a new fiber obsession, but I will knit this all the same. Here is Lorelei and I - a great teacher and her pupil.

Friday, December 19, 2008

Snow Day/Christmas Shopping

Yes, while the rest of the country is all snugged in for a holiday Snow Day, I thought I would go to downtown Ann Arbor and finish my Christmas shopping. I'm back and I am done. The rest of the day will be spent wrapping presents and cooking goulash. Maybe I will even bake something Christmassy. This is what we found when we ventured out of the garage. That is our neighbors overturned trash barrel in the center of the photo.In our short 1.2 mile drive to downtown this is how we found the streets. The city fire hall is on the right and city hall is on the left.Our first stop was Starbucks for a much needed cappuccino. We looked out the window to our destination of Borders Books. Ann Arbor is home to Borders and this is the flagship store. It is not the original Borders store as that was kiddy corner from this present location. That building was outgrown when they first went national.
The last presents were bought and this was the view driving back into the garage. I would post photos of what I got, but some people have been known to check out this blog......
Trust me, there is usually a little more traffic at noon on Miller Avenue. Bill has informed me that the cable is out. Horrors! I predict an afternoon of Jane Austen videos. Happy Sledding!


Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Winter Wonderland

The snowstorm has started. We are expecting anywhere from 2-8 inches, depending on which talking head is doing the predicting. I spent the day doing errands and finishing up some Christmas stuff here at the house. Remember when I said Bill was going to pick up some lights for the tree on the way home from hockey? Well, he did. White lights - commercial grade. Our vintage white artificial tree looks, well..... other-worldly. The brightness kind of grows on you. I might be able to retire my Ott light for the holidays and sew by the light of the tree. (Yes, the only light on in the house is the tree!)I wrapped presents........I also changed some of the quilts around. The German glass glitter Empire State building shows up better against Brrrrr Park.Bill is at hockey again and I hope the roads aren't too bad for the ride home. Here's hoping you are keeping warm and your travel is safe.


Sunday, December 14, 2008

Christmas Decorating

Polly sent over some pictures of her decorating. No one decorates like Polly and these pictures are as identifiable to her as her DNA. We will both be away from our homes on the 25th, so decorating is a bit more low key this year.
We finally had the time to get out the decorations this weekend. One of our strings of lights is fried, so Bill will pick up another one on his way home from Hockey. The tree trimming will take place later tonight. Other than the tree and some quilts - not much else is done here either. I did find this in New York last week and had to have it. It is the Empire State Building covered in German glass glitter. I still can't decide if it is cool or kitsch, but I still had to have it. I wish I could take a better picture of it.
Below is a kit we are offering at our website - www.minickandsimpson.com. We got the last of the Prairie Paisley Jelly Rolls from the Moda warehouse and have kitted them into this. Supplies are limited. We hope your decorating and tree trimming is going splendidly.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Year End Inventory Sale

Hey everyone! We are home from the road and trying to get back to work ; ) One of the chores on my list is a little housekeeping and getting out the Holiday decorations. I am soooo late. In the midst of box shuffling I decided we needed a little inventory trimming. Go to our website www.minickandsimpson.com and peruse our patterns. Buy any pattern and get another pattern free! Just note in the "share any details" box on the order form what pattern you would like free. Only stipulation is that you pick one of the same value or lesser value. Pick a pattern and start whittling down on your fabric or wool stash. The sale runs from now until the end of the year. Okay, now back to box moving.


Thursday, December 4, 2008

Goodbye New York

Well, all good things must come to an end. One our way back to the hotel we stopped and admired the tree. Polly, me, and just about everyone in NYC with a camera decided to stop by tonight. Rockefeller Center is lovely, heartwarming, and corny all at the same time. We fly back home tomorrow morning with aching feet and a head full of ideas. It has been great and we always look forward to our next trip. Now it is back to work. Thanks for indulging us, everyone - it's so much fun to share the pictures.

Laurie & Polly

Did We Miss Something?

After a fun, but exhausting day of sight seeing, we started on our way to Broadway to see White Christmas. Polly was smart enough to scoop up tickets to this show when we made our hotel reservation - months ago. My brilliant sister managed to get 2 tickets 3rd row center!!!!! It seems that while we were running around yesterday gathering inspiration, the rest of the city got a memo about the Christmas Tree lighting at Rockefeller Center. We did not. Our cab got stuck in gridlock as many streets were closed to traffic. Pedestrians swarmed the city. Out we jumped and started to the theatre on foot. I do not know HOW we made it on time. A Christmas miracle for sure. As we ran up the aisle to our seats (we were the last people let into the theatre) the orchestra started. Hurrah! What a great show. The picture above was taken at intermission of the stage. I hate to tell you that we were so close that I couldn't get the whole thing in. As fans or the original movie I can tell you that this is so much better! And.... we got snowed on during the finale! Perfection.
This was the scene in Times Square as we walked back to the hotel. The tables and chairs are situated around the new Half Price Tickets booth. TaTa
Laurie & Polly

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

New York - Day 2

Yes, these are peonies in December at Dean and Delucca. We stopped in this morning on our way to some appointments. The pastries were almost as beautiful. This shop in Soho is inspiring too.
After business and hours of walking we came upon Gemma in the Bowery. It's a lovely european cafe and a nice spot to watch the world go by. This is the delicious concoction of a rustic apple tart with olive oil gelato. It sounded so interesting we had to order it. Boy, I tell you.... this alone is worth a trip to the city.

Next we headed over to Chelsea and visited the City Quilter. This is a must stop. Lots and lots of fabric and inspiration. Polly is checking out this display of American Primer. We didn't even have to bribe them to display it so nicely : )

Here are some more of City Quilter's wares.

Finally over to Macy's to check the windows and decorations. This is the entranceway.

On the first floor in cosmetics they had the Waterford crystal ball that drops in Time Square on New Years Eve.

We love the decorations at Macy's.

More tomorrow........

The City That Never Sleeps

Dinner Last night was fabulous! We went to Tao. Tao of Page Six fame and the hot spot for all those young people. Our food was fantastic and the decor is awesome - a 50 foot Buddha among the diners for example. There were many young people out mingling - but us, the sedate white hairs just dined and watched. Polly and I recommend and it will be on our list to visit again. Alas, no photos of the Buddha survived. Above, this was our view on our after dinner walk. They will light the Christmas tree tonight and we will do our best to get a photo of it for you people (after the show). Our final stop was to the Rainbow Room to get a late night jolt of caffeine and this view of the Empire State Building. We are now off to some appointments and more window shopping. TaTa
Laurie & Polly

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

New York Eye Love You

On the way from Ralph's to our favorite eyeglass shop, we came across this window. Vintage Bakelite jewelry sure is a show stopper. It is things like this that can inspire a color palette for our next collection. We shall see....... Next on to Trapp Optical where they have funky, unusual and stop you in your tracks specs. We picked out our next frames when a new Rx is due. I picked "off the rack." Polly is having some specially crafted! Yes, we are eyeglass divas.


Polly and Laurie do NYC!

Polly and I are in New York - the city that never sleeps. We have some appointments tomorrow, but today was a day of window shopping and that mystical mojo thing called "getting inspiration." We walked miles and miles up and down Lexington and Madison avenues and stopped at our Mecca - Ralph Lauren. Five floors of wonderful colors, textures and style. This is Ralph's front door. How can you not want to go Christmas shopping?

We are now on our way to dinner. More later.......


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