Marilyn Brown - I grew up in Westchester County, NY. My grandmother and my mother were both accomplished seamstresses, but I could never get the hang of that or of knitting at all. Then one day, way in the back of our local 5 and 10, something caught my eye. I was very drawn to it, picked it up and it was love at first site - it was a piece of needlepoint! I can still remember the brown Penelope canvas, and it went home with me that day, I was 15, and for the next 10 years, the piece went with me - from Harrison to Greenwich Village, and once I married off it went with my husband and I to Princeton.

There once again, a piece caught my eye - a lovely lamb by the old firm of Mazeltov. Home it came with me, and still hangs in my living room today. Our first child was born with a sever birth defect and I stitched on that lamb in many hospital rooms.

As the other children came along, there was always a sweet needlepoint to work on for their rooms. While I waited at school with my friends for dismissal time, I always had a needlepoint in my hands.

And now the years have sped by - I have stitched ring bearer pillows, "Welcome" signs, lots of Christmas stockings and am currently working on a tooth fairy pillow.

I find that whether just "tent stitching" a piece or using fancier stitches, the movement of the needle through the canvas is soothing and restful, and the end result is satisfying - and maybe even a family heirloom.

I hope that this new venture will be a blessing to many, and I personally give Russell and Stephen my heartfelt gratitude.

To those who will receive these needlepoint pieces, may the working of them bring you joy and peace. Happy stitching to all!

Mindy Bogue has also been a huge help in getting the PPS to allow needlepoint into their rehab/prison, which is a big deal.