Nutrition Mafia Series:

One Good Eclair

Sedona O'Hala Series:

Executive Dirt

Moon Shadow Series:

Ghost Shadow

Now Available:

Soul of the Desert


Some Things I Made

Some pictures of my latest batches of homemade hot process soap and my latest shampoo. Click the pix for larger views!

Fairy Kissed light conditioning shampoo in citrus.

My good friend (nicknamed Snoopy) made this WONDERFUL little display dish for me. How cute is it???? She is made of awesome. The soaps are lemonade, orange citrus and lavender.

The soaps all packaged and ready to ship to their new home!

Next up we have a helper for when I made the baby blankets. Yup, The Convict is sleeping on the job! Worse, he’s sleeping on the material…

36 by 36 baby blanket in flannel.

36 by oh, maybe 35 because of an error, baby blanket in flannel.

The World of Thread

As y’all know, I have a hard time finding clothes that fit. This leads me to buy pants that can be cut and converted into shorts. Only this last pair I bought…was actually long enough to fit as pants IF I took the hem out. But that meant finding thread to match the pants. Oh, the adventure! Hancock Fabrics is closed, so I tried Walmart, Michael’s AND Hobby Lobby to no avail. Finally, I looked up sewing places that might be nearby. JoAnns was way across town, but there was a little boutique shop called Sew Crazy, right up the road!

Since I’d already wasted two days driving hither and yon, what’s one more stop??? Off I went. What a find! Oh, they didn’t have the right thread in stock, BUT Sew Crazy is a quilting haven–and in the back, one of the cotton spools was a close match. Too bad it wasn’t for sale. But wait! Tina, the proprietor, was not one to give up easily. She spooled two bobbins of the thread for me to take home so that I could sew my pants. She didn’t want me to be pant-less!!! (We’re all very grateful to her!)

While there, I discovered that she sells the IMPOSSIBLE-to-find linen lace trim! I’d been looking for some for a pair of linen pants I ripped in the washing machine. I was fairly certain that with the right trim, I could disguise that tear as…decoration! But even after exhaustive googling there was no linen lace to be found. UNTIL…Sew Crazy! I bought a nice roll of it. I also found some lovely cotton pink lace. I don’t have a project in mind for that, but look! It’s pink cotton lace! How could I pass it by? I couldn’t. There was another spool of linen lace that had a little measuring tape decor on one side and plain on the other. Some very delicate piping too. I wanted all of it! If she ever gets in wide linen lace, I’m a lost cause!

Sew Crazy has an etsy shop, of course. You can also shop at the online shop or send questions to Sew Crazy. As you would expect, Tina sews up a storm and has some awesome and gorgeous products for sale at Dress This Nest.

Related Book: Executive Dirt
At Amazon
At Kobobooks.
At Google Play
At B&N
If you know how to sideload or mail files to your reader, the blog store has copies of Executive Dirt also.

Posted: January 28, 2017
Filed in Quilting
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Embroidery and Sewing

Yup, I hit the machines again. They always hit back too. I made a couple of baby burp cloths. I’m not sure I got the size correct. I followed a pattern. Well, I read what the pattern said to do and then gave it the old Maria signature design. It’s not really square and the pattern actually had an indent for a mom’s neck, but that didn’t work out on my version. These are originals, folks! One of a kind!

The stitches in embroidery are dependent on the design. You can’t tell from the pictures but the blocks have “neater” design stitches than the bear. There’s a couple of small gaps in the bear stitches here and there, but it’s a very cute bear and the largest size my machine can handle. I wanted a dinosaur and a penguin, and bees in a garden, but those designs were a tad too expensive for my budget!

Both designs are from

Posted: January 4, 2017
Filed in Quilting
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More Latex Projects!

Remember how y’all made fun of me for my last attempt at re-upholstery?? You know who you are!!! Well, I obtained some more fabulous latex from Sleep on Latex (You can custom order direct from their site also. Or you can order larger pieces and cut them to your heart’s content. The earlier project was one where I cut the foam and it didn’t turn out so great. BUT this one is fabulous!) Husband bought a music bench, but it was rather flat and uncomfortable. It OBVIOUSLY needed some awesome latex foam and a new cover!!!

Here’s how it turned out:


What say you, dear readers???

Posted: October 17, 2016

Bags for Books

As y’all know, I give away a book bag (or more lately, an embroidered towel) to everyone who purchases one of my print books. The bags are random; some have embroidery, most don’t. Some have matching front and back, many don’t. Most do not have matching straps. ANYTHING can happen!

Anyway, I haven’t FINISHED this bag yet, but I made this bag specifically for someone who ordered Tracking Magic (Tracking Magic is part of Magical Mayhem, which is the print collection of my short stories). I picked out this pattern for various reasons, and was really pleased with the way it turned out!

Maybe Dee will stop by and tell us what kind of cat this is. There’s probably some official name for all those colors!


Posted: July 10, 2016
Tags:, ,

The New Mexico Sun

I picked this design to go with the Soul of the Desert. I’m pleased with the way it turned out. Embroidery on a terry cloth tea towel is a little difficult because there are blue threads sticking up all over the towel! But this design had enough threads to do the job. I think it would look fine in just plain yellow too.


Related book: Soul of the Desert A contemporary Western tale of survival with the heart of James Herriot’s “All Creatures Great and Small” and the thriller ride of Cormac McCarthy’s “No Country for Old Men.”

Posted: June 14, 2016
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We have a Dragon!

Still playing with my embroidery machine, trying to pick patterns that will look good on a book bag. Or a kitchen towel. Yes, I am supposed to be working on another seat cushion for Mom. She needs one for the car now that I made her one for the couch and the kitchen chair. 🙂 Anyway, these patterns have to be tested before I actually put them on a bag. I think this one will be a keeper–what say you?


The bag I’m working on is a light blue with some white. I think the dragon might work well on there!

Related Books:
Dragons of Wendal


Posted: June 11, 2016
Tags:, ,

Learning Embroidery – Brother SE400

So I’m learning about my embroidery machine now that it seems to be fixed enough to sew and embroider. I managed to completely ruin a piece of cloth that I *thought* was going to be a hummingbird stabilizer for my mom. That didn’t work out so I decided to test the fonts that came with the Brother SE400. The first thing I learned is that they don’t include enough fonts. The second thing I learned is that none of them look all that great when done at the smallest size. The best one in a small size is kind of ugly and odd shaped (third one from the top). Now, I know a thing or two about fonts because I have to choose them for my covers. I can’t understand why they chose the fonts they chose and why they didn’t include about six more. Methinks they shaved a corner off their costs by not including more. I can buy other fonts (I’m considering Comic Sans because it’s a thick font but doesn’t look too heavy. It’s curved so it gives off a sense of fun rather than being a ponderous, boring font). Fonts are expensive and when not included directly on the machine, I have to type the words in a software program and side load them to the machine (this machine could really use a USB slot instead of the card slots. The cards contain embroidery designs, but they are so expensive no one will be buy them now that you can buy all kinds of patterns online.) A machine that had wifi and could accept designs that way would be even cooler, but I suppose that would add to the costs. A USB port wouldn’t add much if anything because that technology is very, very cheap.

But I digress and here you are waiting to see the fonts!!! (Click the picture for a larger size).


There you have it. This took me all day. And I’m having to spend an inordinate amount of time trying to get my little bear to turn out the way I want. In order to design it perfectly and be able to edit each stitch, I’d have to buy software that ranges in price from $150 to $1000. So please don’t expect perfection anytime soon! If I happen across 1000 dollars I’ll use it to pay someone to do an audio book of Executive Lunch or Dragons of Wendal. Meanwhile, we’ll just settle for imperfections!

Possible Related Book: Executive Dirt

Posted: June 10, 2016

Some Real Embroidery

Such serendipitous timing! I came across an article about the discovery of a piece of skirt from one of Queen Elizabeth’s I famous gowns. About halfway down in the article, you’ll want to watch the video that includes some fabulous close ups of the textile made from silk and silver. The embroidery has gold and silver threads. You really can’t see those in the shots, but the embroidery is still something to behold. Supposedly it was done by one person–I find that hard to believe. Even with a machine, I get one design done per day! He probably had employees or a room full of sewists. At any rate, it’s an incredible bit of history.

Posted: May 18, 2016
Tags:, ,

We have a Bookbag!

There’s a couple of loose threads on the coffee cup and I’m still having trouble with getting the words the way I want, BUT we have a bookbag! Who wouldn’t want such a snazzy bag??? It’s one of The Green Bag Lady’s creations with my creative embroidery on front and back.

Who knows what I might come up with next???


Posted: May 17, 2016
Tags:, ,
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