Saturday, December 28, 2013

Looking Back and Ahead

2013 is winding down and in looking back, it has been a very busy year. It's time to sit a bit in front of a nice warm fire.
Wayne and I traveled a lot this year - to all of the AQS QuiltWeek® events: Lancaster, PA; Paducah, KY (didn't need to travel but worked the show for nine days); Grand Rapids, MI; and Des Moines, IA. And then we traveled to Muscatine, IA, for Bonnie's class reunion; to Moline, IL, for Mom's 90th birthday party; to Marion, IN, where Meredith Schroeder was inducted into the Quilter's Hall of Fame; to Williamsburg, VA, for Wayne's annual Army reunion with the guys who were stationed together in Viet Nam; and to Huntsville, AL, where Bonnie judged the quilt show for the Heritage Quilters of Huntsville.
Mom (Mary Kirkland) turned 90 years young in July. We had about 50 relatives from across the country join us for a big party for her. But we also celebrated several other things - brother Gerry turned 70 in June, youngest sister Marcia turned 65 in May, and Wayne and Bonnie celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary in June. Now that is a lot of celebrations!

Bonnie made another trip to Egypt in May to select more of the Tentmakers' applique to display and sell at our AQS QuiltWeek events. It takes four days to visit each of the 21 shops that we work with. Bonnie bought some pieces for her own collection on this trip, including the one shown behind her in this photo. This piece is an unusual style for a Tentmaker piece. It looks like it should be pieced, but every piece is appliqued to the background. And, you can see that it is in the colors that Bonnie likes!
At the reunion of the 222nd Aviation Battalion in Williamsburg, Wayne planned a big surprise for all of the other veterans. We contacted Quilts of Valor and they presented every veteran at the reunion with their own Quilt of Valor. I did a whole blog about that - just scroll down to find all of the photos from that very special evening. Every veteran was thanked for their service - this was the first time that had happened for many of them. Wayne had received a Quilt of Valor from the group in Des Moines, Iowa, in 2012; we took his quilt and they also gave him a very nice certificate of appreciation for service to our country.
Wayne spent two weeks in the hospital in December - started with a fall at home and they admitted him for cellulitis in his right leg. That led to other tests, and he is now home recuperating. His leg is improving daily and with the help of OT and PT, he is walking better every day. He has a new lift chair that will make it easier for him to get up from his chair and to sit more comfortably with his leg elevated (like it is supposed to be).

What's ahead for 2014?
AQS has added three new shows to our schedule of events - Phoenix, AZ, in February; Charlotte, NC, in July; and Chattanooga, TN, in September. These are in addition to Lancaster, Paducah, Grand Rapids, and Des Moines. That's a total of seven shows for 2014.

Bonnie is working on another book that combines Zentangle® with Quilting. You'll learn how to add Zentangle designs to many other projects - from dishes to linens and already-made lampshades and pillows. Then we'll take those Zentangle designs and convert them to quilting designs.

In May, Bonnie will be teaching Zentangle > Quilting on an Alaskan cruise aboard the Norwegian Princess, along with Patti Hempen. We'll have hands-on classes when at sea, and explore Alaska when we are at port. When Wayne and I have cruised in Mexico and the Caribbean, the stewards have always told us that you don't want to miss a cruise to Alaska. Join us and cross that one off your bucket list!

Wishing you all a Happy New Year!

Bonnie B

Friday, December 20, 2013

Browning Holiday News - 2013

For many years, Wayne and I have printed a Browning Holidays News... and this year we are trying something new. The photos we would have printed are included in this electronic Smilebox album.

Hope you enjoy it... and the Christmas music to go along with it.

Merry Christmas from Wayne, Bonnie, and Tuffy
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Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Army Reunion - Quilts of Valor Presentations

Last weekend Wayne and I attended the annual reunion of the veterans who served together in Viet Nam in the headquarters company of the 222nd Aviation Battalion. We always do something special - this time we visited Williamsburg, VA, and enjoyed a day in Colonial Williamsburg, and another day in Yorktown and Jamestown.

The highlight of our weekend was on Saturday evening when Wayne and I had arranged for all of the veterans to receive a Quilt of Valor. Wayne had received a Quilt of Valor from the QOV group in Des Moines, Iowa, in 2012. That quilt was the first time anyone had thanked him for his service in Viet Nam and for our country. He knew the fellows we always meet at the annual reunion would like to receive a quilt too. I contacted the QOV website and filled out a request form. Jeff Thorne from the Quilts of Valor Foundation serving the National Capital Region responded and told us they would be happy to come and thank the men for their service and present each of them with a Quilt of Valor.

The Smilebox below shares photos from that evening. Thank you to Jeff and Kathy Thorne, and Les and Elaine Page, from the Quilts of Valor Foundation, for making this a very special evening. These men will never forget it.

You can save the Smilebox or you can save the photos in it; just click on the Save button and it will give you the options for saving them.

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Photos by Jeff Thorne and Bonnie Browning.
Music: Medal of Honor and Near and Far.

Monday, September 23, 2013

MHS Class of 1963 - 50th Reunion

Last weekend was the 50th class reunion of the 1963 class at Muscatine High School in Muscatine, Iowa. Wayne and I enjoyed getting reacquainted with many of our classmates and their spouses. We started with an informal evening at The Lighthouse in Fairport, along the Mississippi River. I snapped several photos - it was crowded so it was hard to get everyone.

On Saturday, I had lunch with some classmates at Ellie's Restaurant in downtown Muscatine. What fun when we found a huge statute of Mark Twain in the lobby. Then we all went to our old high school for a tour. It is now an elementary school. Things looked somewhat the same, but we were happy to see computers in the library and in the computer lab.

Saturday evening was our dinner at The Rendezvous on Lucas Street - a new banquet facility. I snapped photos of couples and singles - hope I didn't miss anyone. But I can tell you, it sure was fun to try to put names on everyone on the photos after I downloaded them. It was a good thing I could see most of the name tags... and could blow up the photos to get the last names.

All of the photos are in the Smilebox below. Since the booklet did not have all of the spouses' names, I put the photos in alphabetical order by your first name. Married names were added from the booklet for the women. Please let me know if your name is not correct - I can fix it.

You can save the Smilebox two ways - you can save it as the Smilebox, and you can save all of the photos in it. I just save them to my desktop, make a new folder, and put the photos in the folder.

Hope you enjoy the photos as much as we enjoyed our time together.

Bonnie Kirkland Browning

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Sunday, September 22, 2013

A Quilting We Will Go...

Quilting... that's exactly what Diane Gaudynski, Darlene Christopherson, and I did last week. I took some vacation days and Wayne and I headed to Milwaukee where we met Diane and Darlene at Bigsby's Sewing Center for two fun-filled days of sitting at our sewing machines and doing some quilting. Thank you to Diane for bringing some of her samples of different machine quilting designs. Darlene and I soaked up as much as we could.

And, of course, we enjoyed some wonderful lunches and dinners together too. What's better than that, good company and good food?

Here is a Smilebox of photos from our retreat. Can't wait to do it again next year.

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Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Zentangle - The Basics

These photos were taken at a class held at Ephemera Paducah in July 2013. As you can see, we had all ages of men, women, and children in our class.

Zentangle is a art form that anyone can do. It is very portable so you can draw tangles anywhere. No drawing or art training is necessary to make beautiful Zentangle art. You'll be amazed at what you can do in just two hours.

You can even join me on a Magnificent Cruise to Alaska, May 17 - 24, 2014, and you will get to draw Zentangles with me, and learn Patti Hempen's famous free-form symmetry technique. You'll be able to apply what you learn to other art and quilting projects... and we'll have a great Show and Tell, and much more fun. Here is a link to learn more about the cruise: .

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I'll be giving two more classes as Ephemera Paducah on October 26, 2013. One class will be on Learn to Zentangle with Bonnie Browning, and the other will be on Holiday Zentangles. Here is a link for more information about these classes: . Sign up today - these will be my last classes in Paducah this year.
Join the fun - learn Zentangle... and come cruise to Alaska with me.
Bonnie Browning

Friday, August 30, 2013

Zentangle on the Norwegian Jewel Cruise Ship with Bonnie B

 Make your plans now to join me and Patti Hempen on the
Norwegian Jewel for a cruise to Alaska.

Over the years, Wayne and I have taken several cruises, and the staff on the ships always tell us that we need to do the cruise to Alaska. In May 2014, I will get to cross that off my "bucket list." And my Mom, Mary Kirkland, is coming with me - our birthday present to her. Just meeting my Mom will be fun for all of you - she's a very spry 90 years young and can run circles around me. Imagine that!

Dates:  May 17 - 24, 2014
Leave from Seattle on Saturday, May 17 and return to Seattle on Saturday, May 24, 2014

We will have classes while at sea; Zentangle® with Bonnie Browning/Certified Zentangle Teacher, and Creative Symmetry with Patti Hempen. Kits will be provided that include everything you will need for the classes.

If you haven't tried any Zentangle drawing yet, you'll fall in love with it on this cruise. I can't think of another thing that will help you enjoy and relax on a cruise. Bonnie, "The Quilting Tangler," will show you that Zentangle® is an easy-to-leam method of creating beautiful images from drawing repetitive patterns - one line at a time. -It's Art that Anyone CAN Do! We'll draw some tangles and then convert them to quilting patterns. You'll never again be at a loss for quilting designs to finish your quilts. Sewing machines will be provided so you can stitch out your designs. The kit provided  includes everything you will need - including pens and Zentangle tiles for drawing, and quilt sandwiches for stitching... plus some surprise items to tangle on.

Here is our Itinerary:

DayDate (2014)PortArriveDepart
1Sat, May 17Seattle 4:00 PM
2Sun, May 18At Sea  
3Mon, May 19Ketchikan7:00 AM3:00 PM
4Tue, May 20Juneau7:00 AM1:30 PM
4Tue, May 20Sawyer Glacier 
5Wed, May 21Skagway7:00 AM5:30 PM
6Thu, May 22At Sea  
7Fri, May 23Victoria2:30 PM9:30 PM
8Sat, May 24Seattle8:00 AM 
Inside staterooms from $1289 (includes classes) per person + taxes
Ocean view staterooms from $1419 (includes classes) per person + taxes
Balcony staterooms from $1949 (includes classes) per person + taxes
Book your cabin today with just a $300 deposit - there are still some cabins available.
Contact Cruise Consultants of North TX for booking details - Gloria Cook can be reached at 817-371-5329, toll free at 888-719-7698 or via email:
Have questions for Bonnie, email her at

Monday, August 26, 2013

Zentangle for Quilters - AQS QuiltWeek in Grand Rapids 2013

I taught two Zentangle® classes at AQS QuiltWeek® in Grand Rapids, Michigan, August 14 - 17, 2013.

Here are some photos from my Zentangle for Quilters class on Saturday morning. We had a full class of 24 students. If you were a student in the class and want a copy of your photo, just click Save at the bottom of the Smilebox after you click "play" and you can save it.

We had a lot of fun and the quilters just about finished their project for the class -- an 8" quilted Zentangle piece that can be framed or bound. At the end, some had their photos taken in my new Zentangled picture frame.
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Thursday, July 25, 2013

Mom's 90th Birthday Party

We had fun with more than 40 of our closest relatives at Mom's 90th Birthday Party on Saturday, July 20, 2012. Hope you enjoy the photos.

You can save the Smilebox album, or you can save the individual photos. This is an easy way to share the photos with you all.

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Saturday, July 13, 2013

It's Time to Celebrate!

On July 20, my family will be having a BIG celebration. First of all, we will celebrate Mom's birthday. She is 90 years young. We all should be as active as she is at that age. Still smart as a whip, lives in her own home, enjoys her flowers and garden, and exercises several times a week.

But that is only the beginning - we have even more things to celebrate while we are together.

Brother Gerry just turned 70.
Sister Marcia just turned 65.
Wayne and Bonnie just celebrated 50 years of marriage.

Wow, we are all getting up there with BIG numbers! We have relatives from across the country coming for Mom's birthday dinner. Can't wait to see everyone!

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Zentangle classes are coming to Paducah!

Learn to Zentangle® with Bonnie Browning

at Ephemera Paducah
333 North Ninth Street
Paducah, Kentucky 42001
270-443-0003 store
Saturday, July 27, from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m.

You won't need to bring any supplies.
Everything you will need is supplied in the kit with the class.

Join us on Saturday, July 27, and start drawing your own unique artwork
and you'll do it "one stroke at a time!"

Bonnie Browning

The Zentangle® art form and method was created by Rick Roberts and Maria Thomas.
Zentangle® is a registered trademark of Zentangle®, Inc. Learn more at

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Photos from Cairo - Part 1

People have been asking me for photos from my trips to Cairo... so here is Part ONE showing photos from some of the things Jenny Bowker and I visited while we were there. I'll do another one dedicated just to the Tentmakers - become a follower of my Blog and you'll receive it as soon as it's finished.

Here is the link to view this Smilebox. Enjoy!


Sunday, June 16, 2013

Today is our 50th wedding anniversary. We had a nice dinner at Outback Steakhouse, did a little shopping for Bonnie's next book on Zentangle, and then came home and took a few photos to mark the occasion.

We tried to include Tuffy, but he wasn't very excited about getting his photo taken.

Our hydrangea bushes just completely opened this week. Aren't they pretty?
And for those of you in the family that know how much trouble I always have figuring out how to use the timer on my camera, well, I have figured it out now. So the next batch of family photos should go much more quickly. LOL 

The other day Wayne told me that not many people reach 50 years of marriage. I asked him how he knew that. He went card shopping, and there were a lot of cards for 25 years, fewer for 30 years, even fewer for 40 years, and he only found two cards to choose from for 50th anniversaries. Guess they don't sell so many cards to those of us in the 50-year club!

Wayne sent me a dozen white roses on Friday. They are still beautiful. I put my favorite wedding photo with them for a photo. Fifty years ago, our wedding gowns were all lace and our photos were in black and white. Those were the days!


Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Zentangle with me on a cruise to Alaska, May 2014

Come sail with me... this is the first announcement of the Alaska Cruise that will feature Patti Hempen and me next May. It is not too early to sign up. Read on... besides seeing beautiful scenery, you'll have classes with Patti and me throughout the cruise. Reserve your place today!

“See Magnificent Alaska”

May 17 - 24, 2014

Bonnie Browning and Patti Hempen will amaze you with "Zentangle®" and "Creative Symmetry"!

Bonnie, The Quilting Tangler, will show you that Zentangle is an easy-to-learn method of creating beautiful images from repetitive patterns. It's Art that Anyone CAN Do!
Patti will show you how to create an amazingly fun, beautiful, and unique work of art using her world-famous Free-Form Symmetry technique!

Please join this delightful duo on NCL's beautiful Jewel for a week of learning, fun, and exploring Alaska.

Contact Cruise Consultants of North TX for booking details. Gloria Cook can be reached at
817-371-5329, toll free at 888-719-7698 or via email:

This will be the view from your balcony stateroom as we cruise the inside passage.  

This fabulous Alaska cruise vacation begins when you arrive at SeaTac Airport. Think about
arriving a day early in Seattle for a fun-filled afternoon and evening, checking out the local
attractions before transferring to the Seattle Cruise Terminal Saturday morning to begin our
week-long adventure.
Class fees are $540 per person and this price includes everything you will need for a great week
with  professional, knowledgeable, and talented educators. Please read their bios and check out
their websites to see samples of their skills. 

Pricing for cruising on Norwegian’s Jewel is based on double occupancy:
Inside staterooms from $749 per person + taxes
Ocean view staterooms from $879 per person + taxes
Balcony staterooms from $1409 per person + taxes

A deposit of $300 will hold your cabin. Balance due 90 days prior to departure.

Gratuities not included. No fuel surcharge exists at this time; however, Norwegian Cruise Line has reserved the right to reinstate this charge under certain conditions.

For those who are interested, a monthly payment schedule is available. 

Just let Gloria know if this appeals to you.

It's an experience of a lifetime - make your plans now to join us!

Monday, April 8, 2013

CZT Hideaway 2013 - Wooded Glen, Indiana

This past weekend I attended the CZT (Certified Zentangle Teacher) Hideaway 2013 at a fantastic resort and conference center in Indiana. Wayne and I drove there on Thursday. I'll let my photos show you the resort and what we did there...

The sign at the entrance of this 587 acre resort and conference center.

 You drive over this covered bridge as you enter the resort.

The lobby of the conference center

Thursday night we exchanged tangled boxes.
I received this wonderful house that was tangled by Peg Farmer.

Each morning as we opened the curtains to our room, we could see the wild turkeys walking past.

We hiked on the Zen-Trail and tangled as we went.

There was a bench at each station that told us the name of a tangle to use
or we sometimes had a choice.

The collage of our Zen-Trail tangles.
This jake spent a lot of time fanning his feathers for the ladies.
Here he is again, with some of the rest of the rafter.
Leslie Scott-Gillilan, Bonnie Browning, Angie Gamble
My photo with the organizers of CZT Hideaway 2013.
One of the lodges on the property. There were four groups - some scientists, a scrapbooking group, a sewing group, and our Zentangle group - in different lodges. We all ate in the conference center... and the food was really good.
This young deer bid us adieu as Wayne and I left the resort.
A fun, relaxing weekend. I worked on my next book on Quilted Tangles, and enjoyed the camaraderie with many of the CZT's that I previously only knew through our CZT Facebook pages. Let's do this again! 

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

A Special Gift for You for National Quilting Day

Dear Quilting Friend,

International Quilt Day is just around the corner, and as a featured artist on a past episode of The Quilt Show, ( I wanted to let you know about a gift that Alex and Ricky have put together for quilters around the world.  

Beginning on Friday, March 16 through Sunday, March 18, everyone who signs on to The Quilt Show will have free access to over 140 of their internet shows, including my episode #609.  You can watch the shows, check out the great tutorials, browse the gallery of over 19,900 member quilts, visit the forum for answers to the most burning quilt questions and lots, lots more. And if you missed my show, you can see it now.

You can also enter the TQS prize drawing with fantastic prizes from companies we know and love like Bernina, Gammill, Superior Threads, AccuQuilt, C and T Publishing, RJR Fabric, and Ricky and Alex will have gift baskets to give away too.  The grand prize is a new BERNINA 550QE sewing machine!

I wanted to make you aware of this amazing event so you can take advantage of everything this exciting weekend has to offer without leaving home and all for free.

Don’t hesitate to share this email with your quilting friends, fellow guild members, social networking friends and local quilt shops so that they don’t miss out on this fun weekend.  And feel free to post an abbreviated version of the details on your Facebook page.  I want everyone to know about this amazing 3-day celebration of all things quilting.

So check in at on Friday, March 15, and enjoy the shows and exploring The Quilt Show website and all it has to offer!  And I’d love to have you view my show, episode #609.

Happy Quilting Day...

Bonnie Browning

Saturday, February 23, 2013

It's Saturday

Today was my shopping day - a trip to Hayes Shoe Store to buy a new pair of shoes for the upcoming quilt shows. Always need to make sure we take care of our feet at the shows. Those concrete floors can be killers for your feet. We always tell our staff to dress to the ankles and make sure you wear comfortable walking shoes. For me, that has been my Birkenstock sandals, but this time I'm trying a pair of SAS sandals. They felt like I could put them on and wear them all day immediately. I'll be wearing them to work now to make sure they will feel good all day long.

The shoe store was very close to Michael's so I stopped there to browse a bit. You know I am working on a book on Zentangles and I found something new to try. I'll just give you a hint - it involves gold leaf. Can't wait to try my idea out. Our office is working on a group challenge quilt and I needed some small piping so the next stop was at Hobby Lobby.

And then Hobby Lobby was very close to Dillard's and I've had a Christmas gift card for Dillard's from Wayne's sister, Kathi, that I hadn't used yet, so I stopped and bought a new outfit there. And if you know me at all, you can guess what color it is. Yep, you guessed it - black pants, light aqua top, and black shirt that can be worn as a jacket. It's lightweight so will make a nice new outfit for spring.

By now, Wayne and I needed a treat so we stopped by DQ for a Blizzard and drove down to the riverfront to eat it. Paducah sits on the confluence of the Ohio and Tennessee Rivers and there was a lot of barge traffic going on today so I snapped a few photos. And right now my blog won't let me upload my photos... so I'll try to show them to you next time.

Anyway, we enjoyed sitting on the riverfront and watching the barges go by. A lady brought a big bag of bread and fed the gulls. I thought sure one was going to land on her head as she tossed the bread pieces this way and that way. They literally surrounded her. It was bright and sunny and a nice day to enjoy the river. There are always couples sitting on the benches and families who wander down close to the water. Often there are fisherman along the bank too, but not today.

Then it was time to go home. Shortly after we unloaded our packages, Andi Reynolds called to say she was bringing over some warm, homemade pretzels. They were yummy. I've never tried making pretzels. These were soft and warm and tasted lots better than the hard, dry pretzels I usually eat.

I just posted two new books on my website: AQS has revised two of my books and reissued them - Easy Paper Piecing; and Triangles at Play (by Phyllis Miller and me). They are $12.95 each and only $10.36 if you are an AQS member. You'll find ordering information on my website under the Books tab.

And now, the day is nearly done. Think I'll read a while...

Bonnie B

Sunday, January 13, 2013

Christmas 2012 Memories

It's always fun to go home for Christmas. I have finally sorted out my Christmas photos and have put together an album of some of them so you can keep up with the family.


Click this Link!