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The Ami Simms Newsletter
November 2001

I'd like to thank you all for opening this e-mail. If it was sent to you in error, please scroll to the bottom for removal instructions. If you LIKE getting this silly thing every month, please forward it to a friend. Perhaps they'd like to subscribe too. (Tell them to send me an email at AmiSimms@aol.com with SUBSCRIBE in the subject.) As of this very instant we're only 101 readers short of 10,000. What do you say? Can you put me over the top?

Your suggestions are still coming in. See the August 2001 newsletter at for my original confessions of eating while quilting, and the October newsletter for your other suggestions.

From Anne's husband: a pneumatically powered foot pedal that launches an M&M into the air to be caught in my mouth. (Yeah, or my ear if my aim is off!)

And finally, this comment from Morganne Webb regarding the necklace of Cheerios to munch on while quilting. Morganne is a New Zealander now living in Australia: "Your latest newsletter was, as usual, a joy to read!! I do however feel I have to ask.........what on earth are Cheerios in USA-land? In New Zealand they're a small red skinned cocktail sausage and quite frankly (no pun intended) the thought of them around my neck............ugggg!!!! I'm kind of guessing that they're a candy (that's lollie downunder) or something similar?? Just curious, actually the suspense of not knowing is really turning my stomach! (Morganne, Cheerios are breakfast cereal. It's the stuff in the spoon at the General Mills' web site at:

In the last newsletter Donna commented, "I thought I would wet myself, I laughed so hard at your explanation on how you ate while you were quilting." Sue adds this month: "I once heard (perhaps on Prairie Home Companion?) this described as "Laughing so hard I had tears running down my legs." (I rather like that, so I'm going to steal it. Just fair warning.)

Back when I was in the 9th grade, I was living in Rome trying to survive being 13 years old. Naturally I was ticked off at having been uprooted to a foreign country just when I expected my popularity and social standing in junior high to finally soar above "outcast." (Like THAT would have happened.) Can you say "gawky, pimply-faced, uncoordinated, non-athletic twerp?"

Anyway, I made friends with some great kids, a handful of whom I've been able to re-discover in adulthood. OK, middle age. One of them was Sharon Kristjanson. She was CANADIAN! Equally exotic was the fact that her mother was from Iran. And here she was living in Italy! We were best buds that year and spent inordinate amounts of time trying to understand the meaning of life, and why Italian males act as they do. I don't believe we came to any earth-shattering conclusions about either issue back then, but it sure was fun to be let loose in the Eternal City with such a good friend.

Why am I telling you this? Sharon continues to think great thoughts. And she acts on them!

Here's the bragging part: MY friend from 9th grade has founded CONNECTING CULTURES THROUGH UNDERSTANDING (CCTU), a not-for-profit organization committed to producing high-quality programs on different countries and cultures. These programs provide insights and understanding as well as opportunities for cross-cultural dialogue. The idea is that when we understand the differences between peoples, we will begin to see the similarities. (Pretty cool, huh?)

If you are in the greater Chicago area (and even if you're not) I urge you to check out their web site at and participate in one of their programs if you can. In February they are offering "Muslim Women Today: Three Perspectives." If you want to learn about women's issues in Iran, living in Egypt, what it's like to wear the veil, and more, sign up for this presentation. In April CCTU is offering a program entitled "China: Transformations In The Land of Confucius." Learn a little history and get insights from a Chinese perspective. Then eat an authentic Chinese meal. (See, learning can be fun, too!) Check out the website, or call (847) 446-9383 for more information!

Morna Golletz, editor/publisher of The Professional Quilter asked me to pass this along:

"Every year The Professional Quilter recognizes an outstanding teacher. We are currently taking nominations for our 16th Teacher of the Year award. Criteria include a commitment to development of fine workmanship and personal expression of students; involvement in and contributions to the field of quiltmaking; and professionalism, including personal code of ethics and serving as a role model."

Visit for more details and nomination form. Deadline is December 1, 2001.

There are always new fabrics on-line for you to audition. (Visit .) The last batch included Robert Kaufman's "In The Nursery" line and Fabri-Quilt's "Suzie Q Whimzies" and "Suzie Q Country Pleasures" lines. Enjoy. (And NO, I don't sell this fabric, it's up there are a service to you so you can audition it and see what's new. If you're looking for a specific fabric, print off the page and head to your local quilt shop, or e-mail those fabric shops listed on my web page at who will search their shelves for you.)

Two prize-winners have fallen off the face of the earth! Where are you?? If your first name is BELEN or your last name is LANDAUER, I've got some cool stuff for you. E-mail me at amisimms@aol.com.

No matter what your name is, there are THREE chances to win this time around. Head over to to win a copy of This Old Quilt. Cute name, huh? Editor Margret Aldrich uses charming old quilts, vintage photographs of quilters, old advertisements, paintings and the like to illustrate this anthology of quilting lore. Stories and excerpts from a variety of authors from the humorous to the heartwarming. Contributors include Raymond Dobard and Jacqueline Tobin who write about quilts used in the Underground Railroad, Whitney Otto's "How To Make An American Quilt," Reba McEntire (you know, the country singer), Sandra Dallas (The Persian Pickle Club), and ME (with a few chapters from How Not To Make A Prize-Winning Quilt). I have three copies to award, courtesy of Voyageur Press, the publishers of This Old Quilt.

Remember last month's prize, the DisplayAway quilt hanger? (See ) Well, they're offering a 20% discount on retail orders to guild members who order together plus a 5% cash commission to the guild. They're also going to pay shipping. For more information, contact Kathi or Hal Zeller at on the web or call toll free: 1-888-487-7233.

This has been one of the more popular pages on the web site and there have been several additions to this page over the last couple of months. Bobbe from Ontario writes, "Now that I've had a chance to see other quilters stashes (or could that be stashii?), I would love you to consider asking people to show off their sewing rooms and/or studios."

Well, I'm not quite ready for that, but if you want to see an awesome sewing space, head on over to the "stash" page at go through the door, and scroll down to the last stash, that of Terry from Illinois. She has a pitifully small stash, but what a studio!

If you just want to see the MOST UNUSUAL for "shelving system" for fabric, Carol from Saginaw, MI takes the cake for that one. You won't believe your eyes! Take a look: < http://www.store.yahoo.com/mallerypressllc/carfromsagmi.html>!

Jim Kaiser at Jamark Labs has come out with a new applicator for Surgeon's Skin Secret, that wonderful stuff that alleviates chapped hands like no other. (See what I wrote about my chapped and Surgeon's Skin Secret at ) Since most of us smear it on our lips in cold weather, he's come out with a "lipstick" tube. Yank off the top, smear it on, purse and pucker your lips a few times and you're ready to go.

There's also a new itty bitty .25 ounce container that is perfect for sewing basket or purse when a little dab is all you need. Visit Jamark Labs for more details. (Scroll down to the bottom of the page you land on for WEB SPECIALS like free gifts and discounts. Select Surgeon's Skin Secret from the navigation bar for details on the product itself.)

Jamark Laboratories will also pay shipping and handling on any gift. Call 1-888-252-6275 toll free and give the salesperson the code: JL595 or enter that into the coupon area when you order on-line. S/H is free when sent to a person other than you.

Cynic that I am, I don't believe every virus warning or scam alert I see. I rarely if ever pass them on. I never pass them on unless I check them out first either by actually contacting the people originally sending whatever warning letter it is, or on one of the sites listed below.

I will pass on this alert from Marsha McCloskey regarding the 809 area code: It's a pay-per-call exchange in the Caribbean and you can run up HUGE charges. First, you don't know you're calling a foreign country (unless you read this newsletter) because these exchanges look just like legitimate area codes in the US, and they won't tell you because they're trying to scam you. So, don't call any telephone number with the 809 area code.

See what Urban Legends has to say about it at: . Also AT&T confirms and adds these area codes as suspect: 284 and 876. See what AT&T has to say at

Keep a list of these area codes (809, 284, and 876) by your phones and don't dial them.

I also got a notification about the old 90# scam. (Someone calls and asks you to dial 90# and hang up, enabling them to place long distance calls billed to your phone number). While this is a "for real thing" it's doubtful it will affect you. See what Urban Legends has to say about it at . You'll also probably enjoy reading about other scams on that page.

If you're interested in "finding the truth" before forwarding on other e-mail warnings that come your way, here are some good places to learn the facts:

Barbara Mikkelson's web site is the place to go if you want the skinny on tons of topics from giant cats to gosh, you name it!

Annoying banner ads to deal with, but this site has a ton of information, too.

For health related issues check out the US Center for Disease Control and Prevention.

For information on computer virus myths

For Internet scams of all kind.

There are more photographs of YOUR quilts on the web page. Visit to see Terri Bruce's Fire Fighter Quilt that she made for her Dad. (Be sure to check out the PS!)

Visit to see Lucelva Davis's quilt made from wedding gowns, embroidered handkerchiefs, old pearl buttons and photo-transfers of six generations of her family.

Send me a 2-line e-mail exactly like this:

NEW Address: SweetQuilter@pieces.com
OLD address: SweetQuilter3456@zigzag.com

(Obviously you should replace these made-up email addresses with YOURS.)

Novelty buttons, Ami's Mommy's Fabric, and copies of How NOT To Make A Prize-Winning Quilt are still on sale plus look for special prices on photo-coasters. They make great little gifts and are easy as pie to make. Packs of 6 coasters are 30% off and the Party Packs (50 coasters) are 50% off. End-of-the-year inventory is coming and I'd rather sell them than count them!

MYSTERY PACKS of conversational fabrics are also on sale and that includes the new 6" square and 10" square packs.

Are there any computer experts out there who would be willing to teach me how to do some "fancy" html stuff on my web page? I'd like to learn how to "send this page to a friend" and "bookmarks," and cursors with word tails, and slide shows. Please e-mail me. :)

Want to outdo Martha Stewart? I've heard of a most unusual gift and need a volunteer to digitize something and embroider it on something rather unusual, and then give it to me. I will photograph it and share all on the web page. Want more details? E-mail me: amisimms@aol.com

Next time I hope to report on the Leader Dogs for the Blind Auction, which was held November 18. The first 8 quilts were auctioned and although I don't have the final figures I know at least $1000 was raised for sure. Special thanks to everyone who shared their passion for quilting in this very special way.

I hope you all have a wonderful time with your families and loved ones this Thanksgiving. If you happen to steal a quiet moment, make a list of the "good things" in your life and feel your heart grow. Tell the ones you care about that you love them. Be grateful for all the blessings that you have been given. Enjoy this special time of year. And, don't forget to pet some fabric too!

Have a great Turkey Day,
Ami Simms


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Original eating while quilting
Your suggestions for eating while quilting
Connecting Cultures
Teacher of the Year
Search Conversational Database
On-line quilt shops
Win "This Old Quilt"
DisplayAway Prize
DisplayAway Home Page
Terry's studio
Carol's UNUSUAL storage
Ami's chapped hands
Surgeon's Skin Secret
809 phone scame
More on 809 phone scam
90# phone scam
Debunk urban legends
More debunking
US Center For Disease Control debunkers
Debunk computer viruses
Debunk Internet scams
Terri Bruce's quilt.
Lucelva Davis's quilt
Embroidery Volunteer

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