Saturday, December 23, 2023


Enjoy the holiday season and we'll check back in next year.

In the meanwhile be sure to check out our Etsy Shop - duodesignsbySandra.  We have in stock the hand painted Stitching Girl Canvases of Stitching Girl with her Horse and Boss Lady.

Saturday, December 16, 2023


This week we went to Punta Gorda to enjoy the Sunset and Christmas Lights Cruise. This took place at Fishermen's Village.The sunset was beyond stunning! It went on forever - well worth the trip.

The Christmas lights on the canal were beautiful and very diverse.  Several different themes, etc.  I am sorry but I was unable to get any pictures.

Following the cruise we went inside Fishermen's Village restaurant and had a wonderful dinner.



This week we shared our mid-month lessons for our Online Classes.

Session VII for the Three Wisemen Encore class has been posted.  We continued the finishing touches for one of the cloaks!

An additional ornament joined the others this week also on the Ornaments Galore canvas from JP Needlepoint.

We are moving right along on this one.

ETSY SHOP - duodesignsbySandra

Books seem to be very popular this month - maybe being shared as gifts. 

As you may recall, we had an exclusive design created for Duo Designs by Gayla Elliott in the Stitching Girl Series.  This design was used to launch our annual Retreat held in General Butler Resort State Park in Northern Kentucky.  Since Kentucky is the Horse Capital we asked for a horse themed design.  Stitching Girl with her Horse was created, 

We are now releasing this design in our Etsy Shop for the enjoyment of others.  There is also available for purchase a stitch guide that one can follow. Email us at for inquiries.

Be sure to check out other Stitch Guides for instant download,

Okay - today is Saturday and also Shuffleboard day!  Gotta get that upper body exercise going as well.,

Sunday, December 10, 2023


We have learned when Bingo nights or days are that are workable for us so that has become a regular activity.  This week I attended my first Ladies Luncheon.  That involves a bunch of us getting together and going to a local or close by facility and enjoy each other's company.  Next up for us is to get back to the shuffleboard court.  Which we did yesterday.  Finally, I am being taught how to play Hand and Foot and am on the substitute list.

On Sunday, hubby's birthday, the kids took us to lunch and we drove around and stopped at a lake.  Hubby saw his first up close alligator!

Now if this became a race who do you think would win?  No thank you - much too close and open for my comfort!

Daughter was thrilled at the chance addition to the lake shore and bonus birthday wish!

Although not a shopper, I managed to buy some yard art at a fantastic pottery complex while in Punta Gorda.  Oh dear!  Too much trouble to be had there.

Those who know me remember our precious Henry - I could not resist this guy in his honor.

He rocks back and forth in the wind and the glass just glistens!  I know, he probably only has a face a mother could love and I do love it.

Can hardly wait for plants to start filling out, etc.

Tomorrow we head out to a boat cruise to see the sunset and Christmas lights.  We will then eat dinner while we are still in town before heading home.

Later . . .

Saturday, December 2, 2023


Well Christmas will certainly be different for us this year that's for sure. It really is different weather and quite an attitude adjustment as well as physical adjustment for us to go from very cold, snow, heavy coats to sunny days, short sleeves, and shorts - but we'll manage 😊 . It would be nice if my waistline could shrink as well as our tree size did.  We have gone from an 11 ft tree to a 6.5 ft tree - but we surprisingly really like it.  It fits perfect where we are. 

 As far as decorating here, the park appears to have about every theme represented. Lots of cartoon characters, super heros, palm trees with full coastal flair, and what we call traditional of some beautiful religious displays and of course santa and reindeer.

Hubby has a birthday coming up tomorrow.  The kids got him a trike so we now can ride together.


Posted a little surprise for my students this past week.  We shared another ornament in the Ornaments Galore class!  

This guy included some beads for bling.

People are still signing up for this class.  It has 20+ areas that are individually featured so it will take several months to cover.  The above photo is of only the third ornament so far.  Such fun!  If you would like to join just email us at  Canvases have been mailed for newcomers.

ETSY SHOP - duodesignsbySandra

Have you checked out the canvases that were extras from our previous classes?  Have a look see - there may be something that interests you.

We have the travel canvases back in stock now so check out those as well - Italy, The Danube, Netherlands (Tulips), Hawaii, Greece (Santorini)  - -

Until next time , , , 

Saturday, November 25, 2023


Thanksgiving is now behind us.  I must say, however, that our celebrations are nothing like Thanksgivings past.  As time has taken more and more family and friends the circle grows smaller and smaller. Thanksgiving and Christmas dinners were our family contributions for many, many years.  Bake that turkey (minimum 22-25 lbs), stuff it with dressing, baked sweet potatoes, cranberry salad, potato salad made by hubby, watergate salad, deviled eggs, green beans - cooked and also casserole, homemade pumpkin pie, etc., etc.  Now it seems the norm for our age group is to have dinner out as family is so scattered and schedules are so varied and full that is the most convenient option for all involved. We were blessed to have both our children with us, however, and thankful for that special gift.


This past week we posted the mid-month lessons for the Groups.

Sea Shells on the Shore had its final session.  Finishing up were the two starfish.

French knots were the main feature of one of the starfish and students who stayed with it should be French knot experts!

A second ornament was shared with the group in Ornaments Galore from JP Needlepoint designs.

Additionally the Three Wisemen - Encore had another part of this fabulous piece to stitch.

We are currently auditioning designs to consider for future online classes.  Your input is welcomed.  Just email your request to

Etsy Shop - duodesignsbySandra

So excited to announce that the popular To The Beach,  Cruisin' Stitchers and Hawaii  handpainted canvases are back in stock over in our Etsy shop.  Hop over and take a look.  Digital stitch guides are also available for instant download.

Remember also there is still time to join the JP Needlepoint Ornaments Galore class and there are a few canvases readily available.

Until next time . . . 

Saturday, November 11, 2023


We seem to be settling in pretty well here in our new Abode. We are slowly but surely adding hubby's specialists as they can work in new patients.  The drive is becoming more comfortable for me as it is becoming more familiar and not too bad.  We have avoided rush hours so that might help.

It is becoming very busy around here as the snowbirds are flocking down. I don't even know the full timers like ourselves much less those who just come down part time.  This will ease up as time goes on and we intermingle more.  It amazes me how much people go in and out - seems like constantly.


This area of our lives seems to be starting to fall back into place - thank goodness.  This coming week we will be sharing the final session of Sea Shells on the Shore by JP Needlepoint. Unbeknownst to me at the beginning of this class selection, I will have a new piece of needlework to display in our new Abode.

We will be sharing the second session of the Ornaments Galore class as well. Christmas pieces always are special to me as I find they provide an outlet for sharing many techniques, special threads and fun embellishments.  You could still join this class if you would like.  Just email us at for details.

The Three Wisemen Encore class will also have its next lesson posted to the group!

ETSY shop - duodesignsbySandra

Our Etsy shop is your place to find most of our instant downloadable stitch guides.  We don't have all of them listed so if there is one you are seeking just ask and we'll let you know if we have it. We also list surplus class canvases heere as well as our own designs.

Now, you are the first to know of a special we are hosting.  Since our address has changed all our book covers now have the old address.  This is not a critical difference but one we will be changing as we deplete our inventory.  One step we are taking to help with this depletion is running specials through the end of the year.  Our first special involves our first set of books - Shapes of Needlepoint.  This is a series of 4 books.  The books have received the prestigious Literary Award twice from the American Needlepoint Guild - once for the publication of the first 2 Series and then again for the last 2 Series.  Series I covers Circles, Squares, Triangles and Rectangles; Series II covers Diamonds Hearts, Octagons and Stars; Series III covers Corners, Hexagons, Ovals and Parallelograms; and, Series 4 covers Diagonals, Horizontals and Verticals. Currently the set of the 4 Shapes of Needlepoint retail in our Etsy Shop at $200 plus S/H.  Our special offers the set of 4 at $150 plus S/H ($20- US shipping only). This price will be honored through the end of 2023 or until the current inventory is depleted.  Email us at to order and we will send a Paypal invoice right away.

That's it for this week folks - remember to Stich with a Smile!

Saturday, November 4, 2023

Our snowbird kids - Teresa and Mark have arrived for the winter!  We are so excited.  Things are really buzzing around here as more and more snowbirders arrive daily - it is almost like grand central station! 
Although we have activities year round here, it moves to a whole different level when the winter residents arrive. A party-type atmosphere vibe sorta moves in!  Woo Hoo! 

Stitching around and on the Greek Isles!

Teresa and Bill on Water Taxi on the Grand Canal going to hotel in Venice

Top priority - Gelato!

On the ship and working!

There is a large screen for students to view if desired.

Students at work!

Class is in session.

Teresa intensely working on her mosaic at Mykonos Greece.

Teresa creating Windmill Mosaic on Mykonos Island of Greece

I chose the very 'exciting' interpretation of the oldest cathedral on the island for my mosaic.

Reminded me of kindergarten  days.

A few didn't make it for the group photo.

To enjoy the sites and beautiful scenes of this cruise be sure to go to the group Stitching and Needlework Events - Bruce Hart generously shared the trip through the lense of his camera and as always he did not disappoint.

Next stop - USA!

While the trip was great and the company even greater, it is always wonderful to get back home.

Saturday, October 28, 2023

WOW!  That is all I can say about the past 2 months!!

Those of you who have been following us over the years know that we have had a very hectic past few months.  We made a major move in late summer, hosted a fabulous Retreat in September and just finished up a Stitching Cruise through and on the Greek Islands this October.

Like I said - WOW!

I am now hopeful to be returning to some normalcy here at - where?  Gotta come with a name for our abode as Arthur Acres is no more.  We have the major portion of our unpacking done.  A dramatic downsize offers some challenges that are not easy to get through but we push forward.  Hubby had a health hiccup along the way but we have gotten through that and he is back to his normal (whatever that is).

We are now focusing on our online classes and making sure we bring them up to date.  That should be cleaned up within the next couple off weeks!  Watch your group postings and let me know if anything is missing.

Next up is the background work for our next domestic Retreat.  Tentatively - yes, tentatively - we are steering towards the Florida west coast area around January 2025.

           We will, of course, have online classes in between - maybe even Zoom - who knows?

We will share details as they develop.  At our last meetings - Retreat and Cruise - the group consensus was for this dateline.  Also requested was to revitalize our Uniquely Yours sessions.  These sessions involve your personal canvas of choice and stash selections. There will be a minimum of 2 days with a possibility of 4 days class offerings.  Make sure to keep your calendar open for early January dates.  We will share the dates as soon as the contracts are finalized.  We are always excited to plan play dates with our stitchers.

Duo Designs Stitching Retreat General Butler Resort State Park - September 2023 - Highlights   

More perfect weather could not have been ordered for this fun event.  Those driving had a lovely canvas to enjoy and those flying had smooth sailing.

                                                Our view over the river with the morning fog.


Breakfast anyone?

                                                                    Registration is Open!

                                        Teresa and Gayla chatting with participants at Reception

                                            Or outdoor bar-b-que

Our featured artist - Gayla Elliott in the center
Shouldn't leave hungry

Oh wait!  We're stitching, right?

Must be interesting

                                                Teresa sharing ideas and thoughts with students

We were too busy teaching to be able to take pictures in the classrooms.

Next week hope to share some of the Stitching Cruise pictures -