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Thursday, November 7, 2013

Slow stitching...and something on my heart.

A dear reader emailed me the other day and said, "you stitch so fast".
It was the first time it occurred to me that this is what many of you believe about me.
Truth time.
I don't stitch quickly. 
I stitch with a slow, and thoughtful rhythm...no rush, just enjoying the process and delighting in how a drawing can become something so lovely with the addition of simple and inexpensive coloured cotton threads. In my sketchbook it holds promise. On my lap, with a needle in hand, it takes on a life of its own and transforms into sweetness.
I don't like to rush that process.


Many emails come through to me, asking "How do you keep your stitches so neat and small?"

I stitch slowly. I let it matter. 

Yes, I do release a lot of new designs each month - for my e-zine, and for Jesus' glory.
That's why it 'seems' I stitch quickly. 
The truth is that my days are rather full. I begin with my dawn quiet hour with the Lord, and then after my housework chores and breakfast, I work. 
You see, my stitching and designing are my occupation.


Migraines have been a constant companion of mine since I was thirteen. 
I dare say there is not a treatment I have not pursued; but to no avail - they continue to cloud my days.

Because of this, and due to much prayer, the Lord opened a door for me to start stitching, and within a few years, to design - all from home.
So, each day, I work at my designing and stitching - which culminates in pattern writing, and magazine writing - and if my migraines take hold I can slip away and rest.

My work takes time. About 50 hours every week, in fact.


So you see, behind the blog, I work to provide an income through design and stitching.
It blesses my family, and I praise God my Father who made it possible for me to work around my migraines.

The hardest part about my work is the lack of time for making gifts. 
I don't have many spare hours, and to be honest, I like to spend much of that time doing other things that have nothing to do with sewing - like studying the Bible; health education; rides on Mr E's motorbike; cooking.

But small gifts, made with love, do bring me joy...


One lesson I learned these last couple of years resulted in me no long making many gifts for people outside of my family. 
When I was involved with swaps, it seemed I was always making items for people I'd never met, and precious time was taken away from what should have been time spent making for my own family.
That broke my heart.
I realised that I had chosen an email acquaintance, and sometimes a perfect stranger, over one of my loved ones. So I stepped away from swaps, and even changed the manner in which I gave gifts to friends.
I reminded myself that it is okay to purchase a small pre-made gift for friends instead of making one, and I prayed they understood that.


There are a lot of funny photos and posters that circulate around the internet and social media saying things that encourage us to buy as much fabric as we can, and to wear those purchases as a badge of honour. I've even shared a few myself.
When I sat down recently and pondered how I'd allowed my craft to steer me away from what really matters, I saw that it wasn't just in time spent making gifts for swaps or acquaintances. It was also in purchasing things I'd probably never have time to use, and spending money that could have helped reduce a debt or changed the life of someone in need.

Slowing down as I stitch gives me time to think about the 'whys' of what I do, and if I let them, those quiet ponderings change my outlook for the better by clearing away perceived expectations of what I thought was 'good', and letting me look through to that which is better. 

Not sure why I've shared all this today, but maybe you are like I was, and you need someone to give you permission to stop the rush, reduce the endless making, or hold back from constant purchases?

My friends, take time and really think about what is important in your life.
Slow down.
'Breathe', as my darling husband would suggest.

Take a weight off your shoulders, and only do what you can with what you have, and most importantly, with JOY in your heart and not overwhelming expectations.

In fact, I want to step out here and say that if you are one of my Elefantz Home e-zine subscribers and you haven't known how to unsubscribe, but you want to, (some of you tell me you would feel guilty if you did - please do not feel that way), then you can go HERE and do it. It's very easy, and I will never be offended.

In fact, I hope you find the courage to cut out of your life all the unnecessary things that weigh you down, and that you find true peace flooding your hearts as you make those changes.

I pray for all of you,
jenny


88 comments:

Edi said...

Jenny, Thank you for sharing what is on your heart. We are all so easily swayed by public opinion and commercial pressures. It takes a lot of soul-searching and courage to not only stand up for what you believe, but to take a long, hard look at yourself and make those determinations. You are not only a talented artist, generous soul, but someone I have come to greatly admire. God has not only blessed you, but your blog-followers as well. Love and hugs.

Capi said...

Dear Jenny,

Thank you so much for sharing from your heart. Much of what you said resonates with me. I, too, am a slow at stitching and sewing and I love the pondering in the process of creating. It has helped me to keep a stitching journal where I record the steps in the process and the details of the finished projects. Looking back I am able to see how much I have done when it seems like I am making little headway.

I am sorry that you have such a "thorn in the flesh" as migraines. I have had only a few in my life and one more will be one too many.

Thanks, too, for your designing encouragement. I am trying to draw what is in my head.

Blessings,

Capi

http://www.facebook.com/thesilverthimble said...

Dear Jenny.. These are wonderful words of life.. We often get so caught up in doing what we think will please others when our object should be first of all to please The Father and then our spouse & family. I am so sorry to hear about the migraines. I will add you to my prayer list.. God bless you as you continue to serve Him with your wonderful talent.. ~~~ Flora @ The Silver Thimble

WendyA said...

Jenny, i am a stranger to you and today i am struggling, feeling weepy and lonely and rather overwhelmed, reading this rang so true of me too, i am frequently looking for ways to simplify my life and enjoy my family, this is a slow process with all happening around me and i always feel the need to 'help everyone' and make their lives easier, it is difficult although i am taking some me time and getting there, i was a carer to my daughter for about 28 years and then i have been unable and i lost Me, who am I? it is a journey and your writing has helped today, many blessings to you xx

Bev C said...

Hello Jenny,

A very sensible and thought provoking post. I often wonder about people who have to join in everything eg swaps the latest bom's etc, is something missing from their life. I would rather donate money to a charity than to the Post Office! Hope you continue to enjoy your slow stitching.

Happy days.
Bev.

Jenny of Elefantz said...

Wendy, honey, I am praying for you right now...may His perfect peace fill you to overflowing, and bring clarity to your life. xx

Jenny of Elefantz said...

Thank you so very much for your prayers, Flora. xx

Joyce said...

Thank you for a wonderful post. I really needed to hear someone else's views on this. I too have been swallowed up by the countless exchanges and gifts that I make for friends. My dear sister has been put on the bottom of the list so many times it's embarrassing! The next time I feel the urge to buy buy buy I'm going to try to do better. Thanks for the encouragement!

Ruth B said...

What a wonderful post...I read every word. Great wisdom was shared. I too wonder sometimes how you get so much stitching done but as you say, it is your occupation. We are blessed to share your world.

Debbie said...

Very well said and written, Jenny. Thank you!

Dorothy Matheson said...

You give us so many gifts. And this message is a gift too. I too am trying to keep a record of what I do. I want to feel like what I do matters in my families lives. I right now am making baby quilts and flannel blankets with crochet around the edge for a new great grand daughter on the way just a week after my birthday in March. Such fun. So many good wishes to her in my quilt and blankets.

Denise said...

Jenny, breathe is what my fiance says to me too when I'm upset. Stitching is very meditative and calming for me. It also gives me extra time to talk with the Lord. I also suffer from migranes and have to work most of the time when I have one but have been known to take a day off and stay in bed with the dark and quiet around me. I think it is a wonderful gift from God to be able to do what you love and take care of your family and yourself. I love what you share with us, your work and yourself. Thank you and bless you.

BillieBee (billiemick) said...

Wonderful post Jenny....thank you. I'm sure we all need to get our priorities right.

Jenny of Elefantz said...

How truly beautiful. xx

Marina said...

Dear Jenny,

hank you for sharing your thoughts on these issues which I think plague many of us, myself included. As far as I am concerned I have a PC addiction - it started out being my 'time out' when the babies were little, but took up more and more of my time, to the point where I have to spend hours each day 'managing' my email and FB, which were sucking the life out of my days and disconnecting me from my family. I am always having to unsubscribe from things in order to get things under control, and recently have started 'timing' myself when on the computer - it's a slow process to fight my way back from this addiction to always gathering knowledge (but then having no time left to use it), and to making better choices with regard to allocating time to crafting and family (hmm, even in writing about it I have them the wrong way round, v.b.sigh).

I intentionally don't engage in swaps or exchanges, or even community sewing events, as I know I am already not using my time to spend with the children/husband/family/home-making/crafting. I've taken the first steps in acknowledging my serious fault of always gathering but never doing, or talking but not doing the walk, but it is very hard to act on the re-prioritisation to put my life back into the correct balance.

Thank you for your timely and honest words.

Warmest regards ~ Marina

Nicole Budiman said...

That was beautifully expressed, and very open and honest of you. It's such a hard balance between what we want to do, and the need to provide for the family. It's great that you can work around your migraines, and I hope you find more time to do what you love doing... blessing your family xo

margaret said...

Jenny you inspire us with your words of wisdom, how wonderful to be able to sit and relax with your stitching, wish my mind would let me stop all the worry and conflict that I am going through. I know that God is helping and without him I would be a real mess.Your faith is so very string and I so admire you for sharing it with us, thankyou

Elizabeth said...

Great post. I would be interested to hear how you changed the way you give to friends. I think that your stitching and your life is perfect - other than those migraines, we can all do without those but maybe they are the Lord's way of making us slow down. Happy stitching.

Sue Wallis said...

Jenny, you certaintly have a way with words, I subscribe to your e-mag & always find something to think about when I read your magazine.Todays post provides much for me to think about, I know I need to stop & ask myself...do I really need more,whether it is fabric ,clothes,shoes or what ever. Thanks Jenny.

Preeta said...

Truly, a very good message, and very well written Jenny. Thank you for sharing your thoughts with us....



Anne-Lise at Rag, Tag, Bobtail said...

Lovely post, Jenny.

Deb said...

Jenny you are so right. Sometimes the wisest thing we can do is to take stock as hard as it may seem. I have been like you over the past 2 years and have decided on different priorities. At times I felt guilty and then I realised I had no reason to feel like it. I have decided to do things when I want to without any pressure but always family comes first. My migraines like yours as you know force you to rethink things and now it's time to think of what is best that doesn't cause migraines. Hard work always but worth the thought. Hugs to you gorgeous. xx

Anonymous said...

Dear Jenny, thank you for sharing your thoughts. I feel encouraged. It is important for me that I read how you do al that things. I think, always: try to be yourself. And you do that as well as you can. I wish you that your bad headache not will tease you to much. May God bless you with strenght and peace. With love, Anneke

Shirley Ann Vels said...

I loved this post so much Jenny. Your thoughts reminded me of a story that the lovely and godly woman, Elizabeth George, shared in her book 'A Woman After God's Own Heart'. She felt the same conviction when making a lovely meal for a family in her church. When her own children saw the lovely meal and asked what they were having for supper, she replied 'hot dogs' or something to that effect. Right there she was convicted not to give her best away to others if she could not give that first to her family. It has stuck with me for years, and your beautiful thoughts have reminded me of that very important fact.

I love how our Almighty Father has blessed you with this work to accommodate your migraines - He is awesome! This was SUCH an encouraging post to read on many levels - thanks so much for sharing.
With love, Shirley Ann in England

Jenny of Elefantz said...

Oh Shirley, *thank you* for sharing the story from Elizabeth George! I get it - what a powerful picture, and how mighty our Lord to use it. xx

Jenny of Elefantz said...

Thank you, Anneke. {{hugs}}

Lida said...

I get the same response and no I do'nt work fast, I just enjoy and make time to enjoy and then the labour of our hands is coming out of the heart and that is the biggest joy! But Iove to see all the creativity of all the ladies and men that work with there gearts and hands!
Hugs
Lida

Kiera Vanella said...

What a wonderful message. I've been in a season of slowing down with my sewing too. It's too easy to get caught up in all that I see on the blogs and lose focus of why I stitch. This post is such a blessing to me. Thank you!

Terry said...

I agree with you completely. I've tried to stay away from swaps, but had always done one at Christmas time. This year I didn't even do that. I just want to sew for myself. And I'm on a mission to use up the fabric I have on hand, only buying new fabric if I need it for backing for a quilt. And now I've had to take a job, which is going to cut into my sewing time. I've been trying to slow down, but I feel that's going to be harder now than ever.

Janet Harlick said...

Thank you so much for sharing your heart today Jenny. I am feeling very overwhelmed with life at the moment and need to assess my priorities and say "no" to some things - swap groups mainly. My heart wants to sew all kinds of wonderful things for my Grandchildren but the swap groups and other stuff get in the way. I also suffer from many migraines and understand how debilitating they can be. the Lord has spoken to my heart through your words and I know it is time to put other things aside and focus on what my heart loves the most - God and my family. A big hug to you xxx

Jenny of Elefantz said...

Isn't He just amazing, Janet? He sees our struggles, and loves us so much that He answers us so gently with His perfect love and direction. Every day He teaches me something new. Every day He changes me for the better.
He heard your hearts cry, and He answered. May you be covered in his grace and overflow with His peace. xxx

Jenny of Elefantz said...

Terry, through our eyes we see the struggle and the challenges. Through His we must see the hope and the Hand that lifts us and carries us forward, every day. xxx

Donna Pheneger said...

Oh dear - you've seen my heart and you live all the way in Australia! I watch my 3 grandchildren five days a week, 10 hours a day. I have had little time to do anything else, let alone anything for friends or, sadly, family. I am trying to cut down on internet usage, other things that take my time and shouldn't, I am trying to trim things down in my craft room, sell things at a garage sale, knowing I will probably never get to them. Reading your blog today has closed doors that should have been closed a long time ago and opened new ones for me and my family. Thank you so much. May God continue to use you in such special ways. Oh...and I do love your work. Such a blessing!

Christina said...

Lovely post. Thank you!

daisydilly (vicki) said...

Thank you for sharing part of "yourself" with us. This is exactly why I love this blog. Praying for you.

annmarie said...

You are such an inspiration Jenny - thank you soooo much!

Stitched With Prayer said...

Jenny, what a beautiful post! Your inspiration is so far reaching and that is because you always speak from your heart. Thank you for your wonderful words, your kind and gentle nudges to follow our hearts and to look to the Lord for all things, are a rich blessing in my life. Hugs coming to you sweet friend....

Joyce Carter said...

Well said, Jenny. I believe you have made a difference in so many of our lives, not only by your beautiful work, but by your love of our Father and the caring you have shown us. Thank you so much for sharing so much of yourself with us.

ladycobblestones said...

I thank you for reminding me of something that from time to time I need reminded of - especially this time of year when my gift list grows faster than I can sew.
I think some of the jokes about lots of fabric got started because of old folks like me. Those of us that have been saving all the little scraps for a lifetime. It adds up over the years. And because I made dolls, and doll clothes, and crazy quilts type gifts - well, I save lots of small pieces. I made my living at times by sewing clothes for people. And I have always made my clothes. So fabric and scraps just sort of piles up and multiplies, I'm fairly sure the jokes got started by the husbands.

SuperMomNoCape said...

Thank you for sharing what is in your heart! For the past few months I've been part of a facebook group called Letting Go and it is about just this thing. Letting go of all that is not needed and embracing the things that you truly love and make your heart sing. We've been encourage to declutter and only keep those things that have real meaning to us. And we've also been encourage to only bring back into our lives things that bring us joy. As a result of that, I've actually been stepping back from feeling like I have to post to my blog so often and that has allowed me to get back to the kind of writing that makes my heart sing. I'm back to working on my novel that I had allowed to take a back seat to blogging.

Patricia said...

Jenny, Thank you for your wonderful words and showing me how to sit and be quite with the Lord (Good Morning Girls). I have felt the same way about my stitching for swaps and not getting things done for my family and friends. Or stressing out because I need to get my family's stitching done and the swaps.

Patricia C

Maxine said...

Such a lovely message. And so appropriate as we enter the busy holiday season (Thanksgiving and Christmas for me). You have made today and the days to follow much better for me.

Patricia said...

Jenny, Thank you for your wonderful words and showing me how to sit and be quite with the Lord (Good Morning Girls). I have felt the same way about my stitching for swaps and not getting things done for my family and friends. Or stressing out because I need to get my family's stitching done and the swaps.

Patricia C

Darlene said...

Oh, dear Jenny, thank you so much for sharing your thoughts and bits of you. You've struck a huge chord with me this morning and giving me reason to pause and collect my thoughts. This year I've struggled with my passions (quilting and stitchery) and you have hit the nail on the head for me. I'm going to spend the day reflecting about me and my passions. I thank you from the bottom of my heart.

Nita said...

Dear Jenny,
Thank you from the bottom of my heart.
Love Nita

Colleen's Blog Long Island NY said...

Dear Jenny, Thank you so much for sharing your thoughts with us. God Bless You.

desertskyquilts said...

Our paths have been parallel, but I'm a few steps behind you. Thanks for this post. You've encouraged me to keep going. The biggest lesson is learning to say no. =)

Tammy said...

Jenny so many things I would love to say. I really enjoy your posts. They give me something to look forward to each and every day. I know we have never met in the real life. But we have emailed and such in this wonderful cyber world. I discovered blogging a very long time ago and had started a blog when I started stocking and daughter was in elementary school. It was soothing and relaxing and a new creative venue for me. I have a special needs son who was in school all day 5 days a week as was my daughter in school. Was so busy. Then she started modeling for John Casablancha and our lives were insane. I stopped stocking. And then started doing machine embroidery. Then life got to be more than we could handle. We stopped the modeling business cold turkey. then We moved from the city suburbs to the country 2 hours away. My son has been home with me after finishing school for not quiet 2 years. Life is just as busy and very stressful just indifferent ways. Then I was diagnosed with breast cancer. Which is a hard diagnosis to deal with physically and mentally. I was sick for quiet a while before I had been diagnosed. I had no energy at all. The simplest things tired me. I could hardly walk up stairs without feeling exhausted and winded. I lost all interest in sewing and stitching and all creative endeavors. Then I discovered blogging again. Reading others blogs as mine had fell the way side several years back. And I look forward to your blog posts. It keeps me uplifted and gives me inspiration. I am a very slow hand stitcher. But it is your projects that have inspired me to pick up needle and floss again. As I go through the surgeries and reconstruction. I have something to look forward to each day and it brings happiness to my world. And gives me ways to do little bits of creativity.

Tammy said...

Spell check.....argh... It is smocking not stocking...that I used to love to do..used to make daughter beautiful hand smocked dresses when she was younger.

Deb said...

Thank you, Jenny. With the holidays approaching, the message is timely. Just today, I saw a cute project that would be lovely for my grands. However, because of all the other things in my life, I probably can't make them. I need to sit back, take stock and decide what is important. Thank you.

Quilter Kathy said...

So much inspiration and food for thought... thank you!

Wendy said...

Your post has really blessed me on today...much food for thought here and I thank you for being so open about your life and why you do the things you do...will be keeping you in my prayers for the migranes...they can literally cripple your way of life when they occur...I have been migrane free for eight yrs. now and I had had them since I was ten...praising God for deliverance from those headaches...enjoy your day Jenny and be blessed.

Anonymous said...

Hi Jenny. as always I am very inspired after reading your messages. Im currently making my own choices to leave a controlling husband after 10 years. In my quiet time ive found my designing and stitching passion again which had led me to a job teaching quilting and embroidery in a community centre. He made me feel anything I made was never good enough and a waist of time so I stopped. I even left the church because I felt my life was all a big lie. But with the help of God has put some good people in my path to help me see the light. I too will continue to stitch to Glorify Him name in all ways. Thankyou again for your positive encouragement and love you share all over the world. God bless you.
Heather in NSW

Sigrid said...

Thank You for sharing this lovely story and message. I've often shown your blog to my husband because it is so inspirational. We have found it so precious to meet people through blogs 'that let their light shine'!

laobeau said...

Amen! In addition to sewing when I can, I started making home-made cards. People have now come to "expect" them and I feel bad if I don't make cards. When I stopped to think. I work full time, drive 70 miles round trip to work 5 days a week, maintain my house and the little things like buying groceries and paying bills - do I have 1-2 hours to spend per elaborate card? I scaled my designs way back except for those special friends and family members and told myself - it's OK to buy a card at the dollar store and put in a heartfelt personal note. You know what? No one has complained. Thanks for the reminder!

Balles Bazaar said...

Thank you for reminding me. Today I will breath and feel the joy of "now".

Jusmom1 said...

Jenny...
Once again The Lord has placed you in my path with a message I so needed to hear. I have been panicky over how far behind I am on my mom's Christmas gift, plagued by worries that I will not have it done by Dec 24th. My dear hubby has tried to lessen my fears, assuring me that if it is not quite done on Christmas morning I should not worry. Mom will love it unfinished and again when I give it back to her...completed. I heard him but I did not really listen. My crafting has been a real joy, especially if I am creating for those I love. I had lost that joy to worry. But today your post was the message that finally got through. I believe that is why you wrote this post. For me and any others who needed to hear it. Thank you.

Ju said...

Oi Jenny,
Gostei muito de ler o seu post, diz tantas coisas importantes. A primeira é sua comunhão com Deus, que é fundamental e indispensável.
Sou admiradora do seu trabalho e lendo o texto dá para ter certeza de que você trabalha com muito amor e dedicação. Comecei a bordar, mas meu tempo também é escasso... São muitos afazeres todos os dias...
Enxaqueca tem solução, sim! Procure um bom especialista, pois é insuportável ter dores de cabeça com muita frequência. Tenha fé que encontrará um bom médico que indicará o tratamento correto para seu caso. Existem muitos tipos de enxaqueca.
Parabéns pelo seu talento, amor à família e pelos belos trabalhos!
Beijinhos do Brasil
Ju

Chandice Mcinerney said...

Jenny, thank you for sharing. It is sometimes very hard to make changes in our lives, knowing that it is for the best. I am sorry to hear that you suffer from migraines. It is a debilitating condition at times. Your designs and embroidery reflect your love for God :D "My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness". 2 Corinthians 12:9 I myself have had many changes and struggles this year and this verse has helped me immensely. I have loved embroidery since my grandmother taught me at the age of 12! Embroidery gives me such joy and peace. Thanks again Jenny <3

Vicki said...

Jenny, I am so pleased to hear that someone else feels the same as I do. Time is short and you need to spend it doing things for the important people in you life without getting yourself frazzled. I have done the occasional swap but, like you said it takes away from other things that you could be spending your time on. Too many of us are victims to the constant push to buy more and crafters are very susceptible.

Sara said...

I loved it when you said "Take a weight off your shoulders, and only do what you can with what you have, and most importantly, with JOY in your heart and not overwhelming expectations." Something I NEED to practice more.

Also, I liked that you brought up taking care of your family first and don't immerse yourself in stranger always. Great point!

I think God was strongly urging you to write this post to your readers. He has spoken!

Blessings!

Anonymous said...

I just want to tell you that I think your stitching is absolutely amazing and find your blogs overwhelmingly uplifting. Your message today was powerful. Thank you! I'm so glad I found your blog a few months ago! I pray that God continues to bless you and your family.

Keep up the good work!

Cindy said...

Jenny, I enjoyed reading this post yesterday and it has continued to bless me today. I told my husband what a joy it is to hear from a sister in Christ who shares the joy of stitching so far from our home in Washington state, USA. Lord bless, Cindy

Anonymous said...

First off,I will admit that I have decided to have a quiet Christmas time away with just my hubby. This year,no present making or buying,I will send my love and funds for my Grandchildren to spend,and will I am sure ease some of the work my lovely family always go to spoiling us two with Christmas Day in their home.Am gong to feel better about my slow coach way of doing craft now,GOD BLESS JENNY,I pray your migraines be gone in Jesus Name, many hugs

Betty Tompsett said...

To Heather in Nsw,God bless you for not being stuck under the control of persecution man.Jesus didn't come to earth and die on the cross so we are to be downtrodden by any Male,it doesn't match scripture,you are set free! GOD BLESS YOU IN YOUR FUTURE WITH JESUS, thanks to JENNY for her sharing! Hugs to all on your mailing list!Betty

Anonymous said...

I, too, thank you for sharing such in such a heart felt way with us. Fibromyalgia is my daily companion, and stitching and machine embroidery are my ways of coping when I am unable to be active. I so appreciate your lovely words and designs, and hearing bits and pieces of your life all the way from Australia. I have always been intrigued with your country. Thanks for sharing. Kate

Diana Rayward said...

This is a beautiful place to be. Thank you Jenny for sharing your heart. I was diagnosed with MS six years ago and turned to my stitching and craft to help me deal with the heartache that the diagnosis brought to me and my family. Over the past six years I have grown to be grateful for the "good" days and deal with the "not so good" days. Stitching (and card-making) is my 'outlet' and helps maintain my fine motor-skills which would otherwise disappear with this disease. So I am grateful to the Lord for giving me such wonderful skills to deal with the "not-so-good" days in my life. And I am grateful to you for designing and providing such inspirational stitcheries that I can fill my days with. Thank You.

Shari said...

Thank you dear sweet Jenny. I so needed this. May God continue to bless you and use you - thank you for being so open and honest. Love you as a dear sister in Christ.
Big, huge hug - the kind you love to get just when you really need it.
Shari

Jan Rhoades said...

God bless and keep you Jenny. May He hold all of you firm and fast in the palm of His hand. Take care. Your words are full of wisdom and love. Thank you for sharing.

Glen said...

Lovely words for us all to heed. As I stitch out your Shabby Roses, I compare my stitches to yours, and of course they are not as even and smooth. I started this embroidery on a caravan trip and have really enjoyed the peace of time spent doing these tiny stitches .... slowly!! As much as I can't wait to finish, I am enjoying the voyage of this delightful quilt, and am grateful that you share your gifts.

Thank you!

Annerose said...

Ich finde es auch fantastisch wie du stickst, ganz toll und alle haben recht wenn sie sagen, so schön und kleine Stiche.
Auch ich wünsche dir viel Zeit für dich und eine schöne Weihnachtszeit, ich freue mich immer sehr darauf und genieße diese Zeit ganz besonders.
Liebe Grüße Annerose

Inês said...

Jenny! A thousand times thank you for your words and encouragement as always push us forward. Every day thou art my companion since I'm not without opening my email to find you. Thanks for everything, even from so far away (Brazil). Kisses, Inês

Wendz said...

Dear Jenny, Bless you! It has been months since I've posted on my blog. It has been a time of mental and emotional confusion underwritten by mounting feelings of obligation and guilt, a constant debate with myself about trying to keep up with what I perceive the quilting world expects from me. Your post has pulled me back to reality and made me realise that my family has paid a high price for my attempt at 'keeping up with the Joneses' . As a result I've given myself permission and will be sorting what I really need and getting rid of the rest. Just the thought of it makes me feel less burdened. With a big hug, and thanks, Wendy

JoanneS said...

Dear Jenny
Your words are just what I needed to hear, though I already know and agree with what you said sometimes we need to hear it over again, even at the age of 53. I have such a stash of projects and ideas I want to get to that sometimes I am overwhelmed. I need to step back and look at what is truely important and FAMILY is number one !! I am so blessed with a great family :)
God Bless you and I will continue to follow your Blog , they make me smile :)
Have a great day
Joanne joanneseruto@yahoo.com

Jeannette said...

Jenny,
You are a Blessing to me as I read your posts and reflect on what really matters. Once again, you gave me permission to just be. Thank you so much for sharing your life with us.

Conni said...

What a beautiful blog post. May God bless you richly as you seek to serve Him more!

Pam in IL said...

I suffer from migraines as well, so I can relate to what you deal with. Thank you for your post and sharing with us.

Timtirim said...

Dear Jenny,
thank you very much for sharing your thoughts, and for letting us take a look at yor "behind the scenes". Thank you also for giving us the advice to slow down. It is always hard... Please keep on stitching and teaching us! Hugs,
Timtirim from Hungary

Anthea said...

Jenny, you have articulated so beautifully, what clearly many of us feel but don't express... In recent months I have become aware of how much 'stuff' I have, much of it purchased at a time in my life of stress & loneliness. Since then, I have been coaching myself to slow down, enjoy my sewing or stitching, & be grateful for the skills & interests I have... I no longer get hung up about how 'productive' I am, or how many items I make, I focus on enjoying the process of making something, all the steps & various skills I have, to make something I am proud of, something I will enjoy using, or perhaps something I am so pleased to gift to someone. There's the joy in needle & thread...
thank you for sharing x

Tanya Hughes Australia said...

oh my goodness - how i needed to read that today! you have said it so kindly and eloquently.
i check for your blog updates every day...you are an inspiration.
I only wish we lived closer - I would love to have coffee with you and chat and stitch
take care
Tanya Hughes

MissesStitches said...

I love your philosophy, Jenny. Thanks so much for sharing with us. Today's post really gave me something to think about. Why do I always need to be in such a hurry? And to feel that I'm so "behind" on my sewing/quilting projects?

Mave said...

Thankyou for your encouraging sharing today. I have felt such pressure the last weeks, not just in stitching.
So thankyou.

Anonymous said...

Beautifully and wisely spoken. Becoming more like Christ...an endess, yet wonderful journey.
- Nancy in Maine: joscowtoo@oxfordnetworks.net

suz said...

thank you for sharing this Jenny. I've printed it out to reread. There is a lot of wisdom here.

janicess said...

Seu blog é pura paz, Jenny. Obrigada por compartilhar conosco a luz de Jesus. Kiss!

Robin in New Jersey said...

You are a very wise woman. I am so thankful our paths crossed. You have been such a blessing! This post is perfect. May the Lord continue to bless you and your family.

Joy Burkhart said...

Dear Jenny! I'm so sorry for your migraines! I've had several of those over the years, and know those are no fun! My cousin is also "cursed," for lack of a better word, with migraines and has yearly botox shots. I believe she gets 9-10 over the course of a day or so, and has not had them in years now. I have often wondered how you manage to produce so many wonderfully beautiful designs! And, how tiny and perfect your stitching is! The answer was right there all along - prayer and guidance from our Lord! God Bless you for sharing, and encouraging all of us!
xoxo
Joy

Lin said...

Thank you Jenny - my first visit to your blog and what you say speaks so much sense. I look forward to following you.