Saturday, September 30, 2017

Needlepoint and Turkiye

Greetings my friends. I hope your day is going well.  I'm sitting out on the balcony enjoying the clouds moving past and the sounds of thunder.  It poured rain earlier today.  I love rain and clouds...

I also love needlepoint.  I discovered this amazing craft two years ago.  My dear friend Nadia, who is an expert at this craft, helped me to get started.

This is my latest piece I completed.  It's a kit from England called Evening Light Westminster. It was so bumpy and skewed when completed but it came out perfect after being framed.

Here's my collection so far.

This is the second piece I made.  It's an iconic scene called The Angelus.

And, here is my very first piece of needlepoint that I made.  Although the wool wasn't great quality. I think the depth of this piece is the best. It's a pastoral scene.

Would you believe I had all three of these pieces custom framed for less than $50.00?  Yes! I had them framed in Turkey.

We discovered a huge art store a couple of years ago.  We bought some paintings along with these hand painted decor items.  As you can see, they're my favorite gold, faux French design.  If I could, my whole household would be like this!

The framed needlepoint pictures are staying in Turkey, adding decor to our home, little by little.

My OCD doesn't allow me to sit down and rest unless I'm working on something; i.e., knitting, crocheting, needlepoint.  On my last shopping day in Turkey, I stumbled across a wonderful yarn shop. Oh my, was I in heaven!  They also had lots of European needlepoint canvases.  There was one I wanted to buy but will wait until next time as I have a large canvas waiting to be started.

My secret wish is that I wish I could do embroidery/crewel work.  I'm fascinated by antique needlework pieces.  There was an advertisement in a needlework magazine I subscribe to. It was for a ten day needlework tour in England. I'd love to go to this but my skills are zero...and the cost was a little too much at £8,000+...maybe one day.

Thank you dear friends for visiting today.

With my best wishes,


Saturday, September 23, 2017

Discovering St. Nicholas along Turkey's Coast

Hello.  It feels like ages since I wrote you all of you.  I hope you had a good end to the summer and a great start to autumn.  I'd love for you to go along with me on a little adventure today.  It was an unplanned adventure for me and one that I will never forget!

We're going to start from Alanya on Turkey's central Mediterranean coastline in the Antalya province and we will travel to Fethiye in the Mugla province.  Fethiye is a beautiful fishing village with a lovely natural harbor situated on Turkey's Aegean coastline.

It's late afternoon and after driving along a narrow road above the city of Fethiye, we continue on the road and take a right turn which puts us on a newly paved, well marked two lane road.  We continue along, going over the mountain top until we can see a lovely valley below.

We end up in the village of Karakoy.  We spy a sign that points us to St. Nicholas  Church; not sure since the sign was in Turkish! With the blue and white colors, it feels like I'm truly in the Aegean.  There are signs of Ataturk all over Turkey since he's the father of modern day Turkey. 

Look at this view from the mountain top.  Stunning, natural, untouched beauty...

It turns out that this little village is a hot spot for tourists with their many boutique style hotels/pensions.

Driving slow through the village, we spy these amazing sheep grazing on the side of a lovely Turkish style home...

After a few more minutes drive, we arrive at the entrance to where we are going.  Maybe I should reword that, we are not sure where we're going but luckily we found the right place!  After paying 25TL; approximately $7.00, we find ourselves at the water's edge.  Across the water, tucked along side the edge of this island are the remains of churches and other buildings dating from the 3rd to 6th century.  This is where St. Nicholas was originally buried.

It's late in the afternoon and although the captain of the small dingy boat offered to take us ashore, we didn't have time to explore.  And, for sure you need proper footware!

Back to present day; I was so excited to have found the original place of where St. Nicholas was buried.  I'm Orthodox and I took my catechism at St. Nicholas Greek Orthodox Church in Tacoma, WA.  It holds a special place in my heart.

Time to get back in the car and make our journey back home to Alanya after spending three delightful days in Fethiye.  St. Nicholas' body was moved 25 miles to the East to the ancient city of Myra.  St. Nicholas was Bishop of Myra.  Myra is now known as modern day Demre, named for the Demre River.

Driving along the beautiful coast highway outside of Fethiye, we spy another sign for St. Nicholas church.  Making our way into the city, we find the church and following the road a little ways to where we see this huge area. . .We have found the ancient city of Myra!

We're greeted by an icon of St. Nicholas (notice that all the signage is in Russian).  I'll try to explain.  Turkey has a rich history that includes the ancient Church.  Modern day Istanbul was ancient Constantinople and is still home to the Ecumenical Patriarch of the Orthodox Church.    

There are many ancient Christian sites in Turkey.  Due to a political situation, the Greeks are not frequent visitors to Turkey.  The next large Orthodox group of 
Christians are the Russians.  And, the Russians love to come to Turkey on all inclusive vacations.  Hence, the Russian marketing at St. Nicholas site.  It's sad that more people are not aware of this amazing place.

This is the entrance to Myra.  It dates from the first century BC and you can still see the remains of the amphitheatre.

Can't you just image this area centuries ago?  It quite fascinating to think about it.

One of the most spectular scenes are these cliff dwellings.  Or, I should saw, rock cut tombs cared on the cliff side.

St. Nicholas became bishop of Myra in the 4th century.  Also, St. Paul changed ships at Myra's port on his way to Rome.   You can read more about St. Paul and St. John in Turkey here.

The sun was starting to set and we still have a three hour journey before we reach home in Alanya.  You can now sit back and rest awhile. . .

I hope you have enjoyed this little glimpse into this fascinating part of Turkey's history.  It really was by chance that we discovered these ancient places.  

Many people have asked me about Turkey and whether it is safe, etc.  We have always been treated very well and never have had any problem.  Of course, it depends were you are, like any place in the world.  Our goal when we are in Turkey is to be a part of the country, meet and make friends with Turkish people and learn more about this fascinating country.  And, of course, respect their country and culture.

I will be back soon with another post about Turkey.  Thank you everyone for visiting my blog.  And, Lilly thanks you too for your comments from her blog post :)

With my best wishes,


PS...Our modern day Santa Claus is derived from St. Nicholas!

Friday, September 15, 2017


Hello everyone.  It's me, Lilly, writing this post today instead of my Mom, Pat.  Since this blog is named after me, I thought it would be appropriate that I write and let you know how thankful I am that you discovered this blog and have been visiting, commenting and sharing your ideas.

I know when my Mom started this blog, she never imagined that it would take off and get viewers from all over the world.  She's always telling me how exciting it is to see new comments and know that people are stopping by and visiting this blogspot.

She wanted to share what she made awhile back.  A pincushion.  She's entered it into the PPPP, Perfectly Pleasing Pincushion Parade 2017 over  here. 

Mom told me she can't take credit for the pattern since she found the pattern here but she added her own embellishments to the pin cushion.

As to what else my Mom has been up to, she recently finished a needlepoint picture that she will share with you another time.

Feel free to write me and say meow.
Love and Meows,