Notta Christmas Present

I’m sure you are wondering what a Notta Christmas Present is.

Well, the answer is quiet simple. A Notta Christmas Present is a present that you get a couple of days before Christmas, but are not allowed to open until after Christmas—because it’s notta Christmas present.

This type of present is given to those of us who ask for “no presents” during this time of year.

My friends are generous to a fault and enjoy giving me things as a sign of their affection. I understand and appreciate this show of generosity, but the only gift I ask for—or will accept—each Christmas is the gift of friendship. Nothing is more precious than this gift and I cherish it with all my heart.

Some of my more over-the-top friends feel the need to add a little something extra to my gift. They aren’t considered over-the-top for nothing. These generous souls respect my wishes, but they still the need to give me a lil’ something extra to sweeten the gift. This benevolence manifests itself into the Notta Christmas Present.

My friend Jim Gatling has mastered the art of the Notta Christmas Present. What you are about to see is a prime example of his unique ability.

Nadda Christmas Present: Wallhanging 1

Jim sent me this amazing wallhanging as part of my Notta Christmas Present. He said that he recently finished the quilt at a Saturday Sew Day with friends. After completing this fabulous piece, Jim was urged to send the quilt to me. Several mutual friends thought I would love it—so that’s what he did—They were right!

Something to Ponder I like flowers and Jim quilted flowers. Coincidence or conspiracy?

Nadda Christmas Present: Wallhanging 2

Here are a few closeups of Jim’s thread painting. This isn’t exactly thread painting in the traditional sense. Jim has quilted the piece at the same time he drew it. Pretty cool . . .huh?

Something to Ponder I love details and this quilt is full of them. Happenstance or a strange confluence of events?

Nadda Christmas Present: Wallhanging 3

Jim loves variegated thread—and after looking at this piece—I think it loves him too. Isn’t it delicious?! 

Something to Ponder I love variegated thread and Jim has created the quilt using only variegated thread. Remarkable concurrence or chance?

Nadda Christmas Present: Wallhanging 4

Jim approaches quilting like he does most things in his life—with gusto and enthusiasm. This piece is a visual representation of Jim’s life.

Something to Ponder I know . . . You’re starting to wonder where your Notta Christmas Present is. How do I know this?
I’m psychic, remember.

Nadda Christmas Present: Wallhanging 5

If you know Jim, you can see him in every detail of this quilt.

Something to Ponder I think the package arrival was just serendipity—don’t you? 

Yeah, that’s it . . . ser . en . dip . i . ty. 

Nadda Christmas Present: Wallhanging 6

If you are fortunate to call him a friend, then you are blessed. He’s a thoughtful, talented and amazing man. He also continuously sends amazing things to the people he loves. I’m not special. He does this type of thing for many people in his life.

Important Note If you are fortunate enough to receive a Notta Christmas Present from Jim—then you are in for a treat.

Nadda Christmas Present: Wooden Box With Wood Burned Top

Besides being a great quilter, Jim is also an avid crafter, antique and button collector, painter, needle artist, teacher, lecturer, costumer, vocalist, broom maker, potter, wedding planner, stained glass artist, china painter, wood burning virtuoso and so much more.

Speaking of wood burning, this wonderful little box was included in my Notta Christmas Present. The box happens to have my name on it, but that has to be some type of metaphysical coincidence and nothing more. To make sure that I fully understand that this isn’t a Christmas present, I have been told multiple times since the package arrived (just in time for Christmas), that’s it’s NOT A CHRISTMAS PRESENT.

Something to Ponder If I were the type of person who liked to put two and two together—I might start doing so now—because things are not adding up.

Nadda Christmas Present: Red Chair 1

This amazing little chair was tucked inside the wooden box—in the Notta Christmas Present package—almost like a surprise gift. 

I don’t think I’ve mentioned this before, but I love little chairs and this one is a beauty. It’s so adorable, I melt when I look at it. Seriously . . . I’m a puddle of stupid right now. 

Nadda Christmas Present: Red Chair 2

Just look at it. It’s SO precious and SO tiny—I can hardly stand it.

I bet you’re wondering if the pins are oversized. I’m delighted to tell you  . . . “No, they are not.” These are normal glass head pins. I know . . . It’s almost too adorable for words.

Although diminutive in size, this chair is loaded with wonderful details. Check out the cushion. Ladies and gentlemen, this OTT cushion is done in needlepoint—and it’s perfect. I am in love!!

Thanks Jim for the wonderful, delightful and completely surprising Notta Christmas Present. You are truly the sweetest person EVER!

Important Note Whew . . . thank goodness this isn’t a Christmas present or I’d have to return it. 🙂


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23 Responses to “Notta Christmas Present”

  1. I Made a Quilt and Gave It Away – Something Unusual for Me. | Jim Gatling's CrAzY CrEaTiVe LiFe Says:

    […] his blog about his”Notta Christmas Gift.” Go red it and see his wonderful pictures: GA_googleAddAttr("AdOpt", "1"); GA_googleAddAttr("Origin", "other"); […]

  2. Jim Gatling Says:

    Crap! I have to get me one of those cameras!! You can make even my “Notta Christmas Gifts” look good. Thank goodness, I didn’t wrap them, or I’d be getting that junk back. It sure would be really hard to change the word”Tom” into “Jim” on that wood burned box!! I just wanted to make you smile this holiday. Only you could turn it around and make an old man smile through tears. Love you, Jim
    PS: I was waiting on an email thank you to post how I made the quilt, never thinking you might do a blog. Now go see my ugly pictures.

    • Tom Russell Says:

      Hey there and SURPRISE! Making these treasures look good was easy. You definitely put a smile on my face. I’m glad I could return the favor.

      I’ll check out your blog so I can learn the rest of the story. For those of you interested in reading it too, here’s a link to Jim’s blog

    • daniellewilkes Says:

      Hi, Jim, I’m Tom’s new stalker friend, and apparently, I’d love to be your new friend as well… although I might need a larger chair.

      The wall hanging is gorgeous. Expertly made. I can’t wait to check out more of your work:-)

  3. Jim Gatling Says:

    Ohhhhhhhhhh, LOL! You and ONLY YOU could coin a new phrase for the Urban Dictionary………….”Notta Christmas Gift”

  4. Brenda Wall Says:

    How can such a talented person have such a talented friend who both love to share? We are blessed to have Jim as a friend. There is NOTTA he can’t do. I truly believe that y’all inspire each other.
    Tom have a blessed New Year. Your blogs are a blessing and joy to me.

    • Tom Russell Says:

      Hi Brenda! I couldn’t agree more. Jim, like many of our friends are overflowing with talent and personality and we get to soak up the waves of their brilliance. Everyone should have friends like these.

      I hope you have a blessed year too. Seeing your comments are a blessing to me. I’m glad my posts bring you joy.

      Merry After Christmas and Happy New Year!

  5. Patricia Eaton Says:

    Tom, As one of your ‘old friends’ from Arkansas and thinking I knew you pretty well….I DID NOT know that you loved and collected chairs!!! ME TOO! I have quite a collection of them. I probably should post some of them one day soon. I KNEW you were getting this present that is notta a present….and knew you would post about it. Isn’t it just priceless!!! That Jim…’my old best friend’….what a talent! It would have been great fun to watch him make this beautiful quilt…as he has such a spontaneous way of working. And, your photos are GREAT!!! Two of my favorite guys….I can’t wait to see what you both create in 2012. Happy New Year, Tom

    • Tom Russell Says:

      Howdy Pat! I don’t consider us old friends. I prefer vintage friends. It’s a more accurate description.

      Yes, I’ve been collecting chairs for a few years now. I don’t know when it started, but I do have a small collection and dearly love each and every one.

      I knew we had a lot of things in common, but this is news to me. I feel closer to you already. This is so cool. You MUST post pictures on your blog. I can’t wait to see them.

      Each item in the box is like Jim . . . priceless.

      I’m glad you enjoyed the photos. I did my best to capture the beauty in each one, but to be honest, I spent most of my time on the chair. I couldn’t help myself. It’s SO photogenic. 🙂

      Happy New Year and Merry After Christmas to you! Love you!

  6. Jayardi Says:

    • • • I agree, he has talent and you must be one of his favorite people to make him share like that. But, of course, you are everyone’s favorite. Especially mine. 😉

    • Tom Russell Says:

      Hey there, Jim is something else. There’s no doubt about it.

      He’s a little shy, so I have to do things like this to get him out of his comfort zone.

      You are very sweet and one of my favorite people. Maybe you’ll give me the opportunity to share your work with the world. 🙂

  7. Carol Anderson Says:

    All I can say is wow! Fabulous work.

    • Tom Russell Says:

      Hi Carol, I’m glad you liked my Notta present. Jim did an amazing job on everything that came in the box, but the quilt is something else. I can’t get over how lucky I am to have such a pretty thing in my studio. I have to pinch myself when I look at it.

      He’ll say that it’s not big deal, but he is wrong.

  8. Analisa Says:

    My Gosh What a quilt! Was that ALL free motion? I wanna be Jim when I grow up!
    Thank you for the lovely compliments Tom.
    Analisa in Dubai xx

    • Tom Russell Says:

      Hi Analisa, Yes, the quilt is all free motion quilted. Lots of us would like to be him when we grow up.

      The compliments were justified. It’s good to see you post.

      Happy New Year!

  9. deb Says:

    What a great notta Christmas present! And from Jim? Even better! I have one of his snowflakes that he made for me using my name – is that not cool?! I’m sure you probably have one, too. ;-D I plan to get it framed and hang it in my studio because it is definitely a one-of-a-kind. You’re so right about Jim – they broke the mold when Jim was made! LOL!

    • Tom Russell Says:

      That’s wonderful Debbie. Jim’s snowflakes are fantastic. How lucky you are to have one of them and made especially for you. Nope, don’t have a snowflake. You are obviously more special to him than you realize. A framed snowflake in your studio sounds like the perfect decoration. You are a lucky woman. 🙂

      Jim = One-of-a-kind (No doubt about it.)

  10. Jackie Says:

    How fortunate that you have such special friends. What a great quilt and the chair is amazing. Does Jim have a website, I’d love to see his other work, what a talent he has. I wish, I wish someday I could do something even close to what he gave you.

    • Tom Russell Says:

      Hi Jackie, All my friends are special. They are loaded with talent and are a constant source of inspiration. I’m sure your friends are equally as gifted.

      Here’s a link to Jim’s blog

      Grab a cup of coffee and be prepared to sit for a while, because Jim does a lot and shares a lot. He’s always up to something—actually he’s usually up to many somethings—and he likes to share them all. You are in for a treat if you go to his site.

      If you keep working at it, you will reach your goal. After you reach it, you can send the quilt to me and I’ll hang it next to Jim’s. 🙂

  11. Carla Says:

    Your friend Jim has talent! He created those flowers as he went along and no predrawing. wow. Glad he made you smile. Would he like to adopt me as a friend. I want “Notta Christmas present”. LOL
    Talented people like yourself are surrounded by other just as talented people.
    Keep Smilin!

    • Tom Russell Says:

      Hi Carla, He drew a loose rough sketch with a washout marker, then stitched everything in. You can read more about it here

      He did make me smile. He’s had the ability to do that for years.

      I’m sure if he met you he would want to adopt you as a friend.

      You are right. I am surrounded by talented friends—like you.

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