Sunday, December 29, 2019

A free 2020 stitchery and a few other things...

Having a number of designs already stitched and in my 'gift idea' box is such fun when occasions roll around through the year.
But I also enjoy stitching something new, or re-doing an older design from years past.
That's what I did with this cover for my 2020 gratitude journal. Originally I shared a much smaller version in redwork to welcome 2015 and I loved it so much that it seemed just right for a remake - much larger and this time in colours and with my signature spatters of tiny applique.

Whilst stitching it I thought you might enjoy having the pattern as a new year gift?
 (download LINK at the end of this post) 

Perhaps you keep journals or diaries, maybe a housekeeping folder?? Actually, I like the idea of a new housekeeping folder - excuse me for a moment while I jot that idea down on a sticky note......(scribble scribble).....

Funny how ideas for new projects just pop into my head as I write. There was a time when I had sticky notes everywhere but now I only have a few and they last but a day because I'm diligent to write them in an Ideas Notebook before day's end.

Do you like the little bookmark too?

I bought a box of these beautiful scripture/encouragement cards a few months back and thought how lovely they'd be with a length of pastel ribbon and gifted in greeting and birthday cards.

One side of the card has a Scripture and the other side has a lovely quote or encouragement.

The thing with fun ideas though is that once you're on a roll you keep, well, rolling!
That's how I ended up with lots of bookmarks and three completed gratitude journals a week before CHRISTmas...

After completing my 2020 journal I made this gratitude journal for a dear neighbour using one of my Bird Seed blocks.

There's a button along the spine which holds a pink ribbon that wraps the journal closed with a bow.

The third gratitude journal is very different from the first two because I made it for my darling Blossom and the journal itself was not new, but my own, one in which I wrote and drew Scriptures and quotes which filled my heart a few years ago...

There's plenty of pages left for Blossom to continue this journal and perhaps one day pass it along to her girls.

The design on the cover is one I stitched in a simple grey and cream variegated thread a number of years ago to preserve my old blue Bible. It was crumbling at the seams and I wanted to hold it together so I made a cover because there are so many hand written notes in the margins and passages simply meant a great deal because there's part of my journey with the Lord inside. 

This new version of the same design is larger and just as meaningful because God's WORD is living and powerful, and still the anchor which holds my life steady in the many storms which have ridden rough-shod over my years. It's also what carries my precious daughter through her own storms, and to watch her immerse time each day in the Bible, to hear her abundant and overflowing love for Jesus as she discusses with me the revelations God has shown her, to see the Jesus-type changes in her character and the effect it has on her loved ones...well, I knew this verse had to be on the cover of the handed down journal I was gifting her.

It's a precious thing to have your child weep with joy over such a gift...and it wasn't tears for the cover I made, it was the love for Jesus she saw within the pages of my old journal. 
And I know there will come a day when her daughters will feel the same reading the love their own mumma pours into the remainder of this journal and perhaps a few more. 
Sow the seed of Jesus, ladies; never stop, never lose hope, never back down, never be afraid of rejection. Just be faithful to plough the soil of your children's hearts and invite Jesus to scatter the seeds of loving and life-giving truth through you.


(see the other three below)

We had a very relaxed Christmas; just breakfast at Blossom's with all the joy and laughter a morning can hold with Cully May and Rafaella centre stage and delighting everyone.

The girls loved the dolly cribs we gave them, as well as the bedding I made. In fact Rafaella thought the crib and bedding looked too good for her dollies and climbed in herself!
Oh, we laughed and laughed!!

There's truly nothing quite like the hugs, kissed, antics and joy of granddaughters.

Ross is really hard to buy a gift for but the way to my son-in-law's heart is through traditional foods he grew up with on Cyprus so after a little probing I  found out he loves Tiropita and has not had it in years. When I walked in with a large tray of freshly baked Tiropita he was the happiest man alive!

Later that day his cousin (also from Cyrus) called and once he knew there was Tiropita at Ross and Blossom's house over he came! Apparently I made it better than most and the photos sent of them tucking in to it were happiness to my heart. 

You know, it really was a simple Christmas, yet it was one of the loveliest in many, many years. 
I find as I get older that if you listen carefully, over time most people share with you the things in their life which evoke special and loving Ross and the Tiropita. 
It was a simple gift and yet it gave him great joy and a reliving of very comforting childhood memories.

Other simple gifts for family members that morning were these small lavender sachets accompanied by those bookmarks I made.

After New Year I will show you the beautiful gifts dear Blossom made me. Truly, handmade from the heart is so very special.

I will sign off today, my final post for 2019, with a little encouragement I shared on Instagram and my FB page today, a message which carries from my heart more than I could say, but I do pray it blesses you.

“The righteous flourish...
planted in the house of the Lord; they flourish in the courts of our God. They still bear fruit in old age;
they are ever full of sap and green.”
Psalm 92:12-14

This promise has stood the test of time; its truth resounding more and more as my years in the Lord’s service as His handmaiden pass by. The once young strong hands now bear the evidence of age marching on and yet I find beauty in my hands such as never before because they tell a story of this life; they hold miracles God-gifted in times of trial; they reach forward to the next moment, the next labour, the next embrace, the next page to turn in His living Word.
These hands will still bear fruit today and in the years to come should Jesus tarry His return because they have been freely offered to God for His moment by moment service.
Ageing is beautiful when you reflect on all He has taught; even more wonderful when you consider all He has yet to teach.

May we each stay teachable and bear the fruit He promises even into old age...



Caroline said...

Reading through your posts now is reminding me to get out my Bible and read it more. Sadly neglected for some time, but I am really enjoying your journey

Beth said...

I have a few of those boxes of promise cards (including the one you have). They are beautiful. I'll often tuck some in a letter for a friend of mine. I also have some that you can colour in.
Hope you have a blessed New Year!

Joanne said...

Hi Jenny,
Thank you for making 2019 a more beautiful year with stitcheries, book club, rewind stitchery club and your blog and lots of lovely things throughout the year! I really enjoyed reading along!
Best wishes for 2020 !

Águeda said...

I wish you the best for those days. And a Happy New Year, dear. Hugs.

Kay said...

These are all so beautiful, having something lovely to use every day just lifts the heart. Happy new year. x

Dots said...

Hi Jenny, your journals are lovely covered. I do journals, too. This 2020 I am including a new journal. One for prayer. I want this one to keep me focused on what I pray and to see how God answered. Kind of tracking the progress and keeping me focused. Also to draw closer to God than ever before. Prayer often gets sidetracked by life or curves that come. So I thought this journal would help me be more consistent. Plus it will show me how God answered, how many answers came,and will probably amaze me by God Himself speaking to my heart. That is my plan for the New Year.
Christmas was good here too. I plan to find ways to simplify it even more next year.
I pray your New Year will be full of great ideas and that blessings pour out of heaven upon you and your family. May 2020 be your best year yet! God bless.

Marie said...

Jenny, what a blessing you are to the world around you! I love reading each post - your love for Jesus and family shines through every one of them. You are such an example to me even though I only know you through your blog. You remind me to look to Jesus and to seek beauty and to think of others. May your New Year be blessed beyond your wildest imagination!

Farm Quilter said...

Your scripture reminds me of my dad...98.5 years old and still on fire with the love of the Lord, spreading it to everyone he comes into contact with, still bearing fruit. I'm so blessed to be able to spend his final years on earth with him, even though it means I miss out on other "important" family things. This is where I'm supposed to be. May 2020 bring showers of blessings to you and those you love, drawing each closer to the Lord.

Mandy Currie said...

Hello Jenny from a cold England, thank you so much for your posts, I can't tell you how much or how often they touch my heart. Now you've given me another idea, bookmarks and also a housekeeping folder. Great inspiration. Thank you also for the journal cover, it's beautiful. I do so wish my Mum was around to share the love of God with, you are so blessed to be able to talk to Blossom. God bless you always, regards Mandy xx

e said...

Thank you for the gifted stitchery and such beautiful gift suggestions. I'm going to try to make some for the coming year. Wishing you health and God's continues blessings and protection in the new year.💗💗💗

MY MUSINGS said...

The journals are simply beautiful! Thanks for sharing your beautiful pictures, thoughts and ideas, and especially the Scripture! You probably have shared this, but when did you start trusting Christ? I love testimonies~ hugs

GrammaGrits said...

Your post was lovely in every way. All the things you made and shared are so special. Your gift to Blossom was a treasure. My husband/pastor reminded us on this last Sunday of the year (for his 40+ time of preaching on the last Sunday of the year) to be faithful in the Word in the New Year. He challenged us to read it through, if possible, but to be faithful. He also shared that 'meditate' in the OT meant to murmur or mumble to ourselves and in the NT mean to revolve in the mind! Isn't that something we all need? Blessings . . .

Susan said...

Amen, Jenny. I've noticed lately the aging of my hands, too. They still work fine, sometimes a little sore. They still type 90 wpm and stitch and wash dishes and cook, even run the vacuum cleaner. They still hold my scriptures or my phone as I listen to spiritual talks or watch spiritual videos. They are still useful hands, but they bear the sign of having been used often and long. They make me think of my grandmother's hands now. I hope they have done as much good in the world as hers did.

Thank you for the beautiful journal stitchery. Thank you for all the beautiful stitcheries this year, the prayers, the amazing posts, and the constant testimony of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. I so appreciate the world where I can share these things with you, and other friends, without fear. I so appreciate the blessing of having the scriptures, and the ability to read God's word for myself and know the truth of all things. Thank you for being a part of that. I love you, sister in Christ and in stitching.

Susan said...

What a great idea to record the prayers AND the answers! A testimony to God's goodness, written to be shared with loved ones.

Julie said...

A beautiful post Jenny. Your journals are simply beautiful & what treasured gifts they will become I am sure. In fact everything you make my friend is beautiful. And how wonderful to make the recipe for Ross. You are just so kind & thoughtful Jenny. I so look forward to your posts for the coming year xxxx

Ondrea said...

An absolutely delightful heartfelt post. Your revamped stitchery looks so beautiful as do those sweet bird seed designs. Great idea making bookmarks from the cards. How cute is Rafaella! So many precious handmade gifts which I know hold love in each stitch you have sewn. Thankyou for your year long inspiring and loving posts.

Robin in New Jersey said...

Thank you, dear Jenny, for the loveliness you brought into our lives in 2019. You are a treasure and a blessing. May 2020 be a blessed year for you and all the readers here.

Tammy said...

Thank you Jenny for your blog has become a ministry to women around the globe. Even those that are not christian cannot deny the pull of your words and christ centered designs. You my friend are exactly what this world needs more of. . Thank you for all you do say, create and share. May 2020 smile upon you each day . May each new day bring you joy and renewed spiritsand unboundless creativity. Love and hugs to you always my sister in Christ and stitchery

Lin said...

Lovely gifts Jenny and another beautiful post. Thank you. xx

Quilting Babcia said...

They say that God plants the perfect seeds at the perfect time, and He surely did through you in this post. This scripture resonates so strongly with me, and just what I needed to read right now. Thank you.

Linda Kay said...

Thank you for sharing your thoughts and feelings for a Christ centered life! I really appreciate a beautiful embroidery patterns you graciously offered to us!