Saturday, January 30, 2010

13 Days - Let the Games Begin!!!

The Kid went out to get the mail today, in the sleet and crap, and came back in with 6 pounds of junque mail, and a little envelope all the way from the Great White North :) That Trish, who I was describing as a master enabler over in TheSamplerLife group just the other day, sent me something! I open it up, and inside is a card, wishing to share a little Olympic Spirit!

Inside, there were a skein of lovely HDF silk, in Old Maid of Liberty, a pack of Juicy Fruit gum, sponsoring the Canadian Team and complete with a little Maple Leaf stamped on each piece - and two Canadian quarters with Olympic events on them!!

Of course, I was trying to beat the 12 yo off the gum long enough to get the picture :)

Around our house, everyone's gearing up for this summer's World Cup in S. Africa; I'm looking forward to the Olympics more, especially as it's in my part of the world this time, so I might actually get to see some of it!!! I saw very little of the Athens or the Beijing Olympics, pretty much just daily recaps, since it all took place while I was asleep :) I'm ready for skating, and the ski jump, and the luge & bobsleds; I love hockey, but it's too hard to watch on tv, unless it's a really good game :) So thank you, Trish - I'm counting the days!! Good luck to all the teams and go for the GOLD in Vancouver!!

Monday, January 25, 2010

Another Monday Update

Hi, people! Here it is, the last Monday of January, already!!! Holy cow, where'd it go? Half frozen, and now under water, due to the rain we've gotten this weekend - wow am I ready for winter to go away (and yes I know I have less room for complaint than most of you - but I did move away from that white stuff on purpose :) )

Well, you've probably already seen my finish of my 2nd RR piece for '09 - that was really fun to finish up :) And just to be clear, the new shop is going to be a very bad influence, with those By the Bay charts coming home with me, after I just bought those others on Opening Day :) But after taking advantage of a 25% off entire purchase coupon for Michaels yesterday (for which I had to go out into the torrential downpour, and coming back on I-85, down to 40 mph with semis trying desperately not to slam into all the people slamming on their breaks in the nearly white-out conditions), I now have Murky Manor, Sleepy Hollow, and those By the Bay charts 99% kitted with floss :)

You'll notice the wrap-around receipt there - I really hate that store have to individually scan the skeins; I understand why they have to, but wow, you could wallpaper a room with one of my annual DMC buys - unless I go to HL, where they don't have scanners, so just need an accurate count. this is 135 skeins, and 1 ball of #12 perle - $30! NOW I ought to be done for a while, until I need fabric for these (need a PTP sale for both of the Glendon Place designs).
On to the actual stitching for the week :) This was Sampler Week, so my main focus, once I finished up that RR at Tuesday's stitch-in, was AD Samplar 4 Saisons. I was hoping to get Spring all done this time - but I didn't quite. I did get it really close, but also did more of the border, and got some of the tree branches going - trying to count to get the Spring leaves on was becoming a nightmare, so I figured I better get some branches in there before I made a horrible boo boo...
I only have a few motifs left in Spring, and then getting that section of tree done so I can get it's leaves done - we'll see how far I get next time :)

This weekend, my local stitching group met - we haven't since October, with the holidays screwing up our 4th Saturdays. I started a little project out of the Joan Elliott book Mel got me for Christmas - Dream. This is a quick little project, and I picked out a small solo I had for it. I have to get beads for it tomorrow at the shop - can you believe I don't have anything I like with it? The solo is 32ct, the design calls for magnificas, but I may go with petites if they fit better, though the magnificas are 12/0, so smaller than 11/0 delicas or regular seeds. We'll just have to see what I find to match :) And the left side of the D is missing because HL didn't have the only color I needed to buy - but it is in that pile from Michaels :)

Saturday, the 23rd, in memory of Lori (who's birthday was 11/23), I broke out Noah's Sub. I haven't worked on this since 2008!! Man, is that bad, or what? But it is my plan to work on this the 23rd of every month, and see if maybe it doesn't see some progress in this new decade :) I got some water in this time; the pink backstitch is kinda weird, but I guess it works okay - just not what I was expecting there.

I do wish that I had gotten a little meatier fabric for this; I love Vikki's linen (that she's not going to carry anymore :( ), but this solidly-stitched piece probably ought to have been on something with a bit more body to it. Oh well - as far as I'm concerned, I am past the point of no return, so onward ho!

This week, back to Lady & unicorn - which I took to my stitch group on Saturday, so they can get an appreciation for the true level of my illness :) I'll go to stitch-in tomorrow, and then we have Indoor soccer finals Wednesday, so those nights are out for L&U - hopefully I can still get some progress in the rest of the week. Outdoor starts in a couple of weeks, so I better enjoy this while I can! Happy stitching this week to everyone!!

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

I love my new LNS!

I've gone to 2 stitch ins already! How fun is that? And last night, there were 8 of us there, along with Terrie, and the kitties were also there! And, as if getting together with other stitchers wasn't enough, last Wednesday, I sent an e-mail, asking for a couple of the By The Bay charts (one of which was there, but I didn't see it in my effort to see everything, I guess), and when I got there last night, she had them already!!! How freakin' cool is that?

Okay, I am officially out of Christmas money :) Visit Terrie and Joey and Scooter at The Stitch Store!

Oh, and guess what else??? I finished off my 2nd RR for 2009 while I was there!!!! That was really fun to work on - I hope everyone who worked on those two designs enjoyed them as much as I did! Though, I do gotta say, doing the 4-sided stitch in white perle on white fabric - umm, headache :) Why was that any harder than the eyelet/Rhodes border? Dunno. But it came out AWESOME and I can't wait for Frames By Mail to have a sale on their metal frames, so I can get one to match the other RR (that needs to get into it's frame - maybe this weekend, if I can get the glass cut for it).

I now return you to your regularly scheduled whatever....

Monday, January 18, 2010

A Warmer January Update

Ahhh, back where we ought to be - 50's & 60's! That's why I live here, folks - supposed to be mild winters! Of course, now that I've typed that out loud, prepare for the ice storm that will probably hit. It'll get crappy again as soon as outdoor soccer starts in a few weeks....

Well, I had another busy stitch week - I started & finished a piece, and got my last RR back from Shawn. I worked on Lyne's piece at the LNS stitch-in Tuesday, worked on my new RR, Mary Wigham, and Knotgarden. I love January with little or no soccer!! Okay, first things first - Lyne's wedding sampler, updated:
If I go to the stitch-in tomorrow, too, I will take this along again, though it is a bit hard to work on for long without benefit of my floor stand. But I did get quite a few stitches in, even if you can't really tell where :)

I also did a couple more motifs on Mary Wigham - was going to work on this at the stitch-in, too, but we got to messing around on the computer, looking up blogs & whatnot, and then it was 10:00, and I told DH I would probably leave about 9:15 or so! But I did manage 2 more motifs during the week, one using a d-bag teal (kinda looks like Indigo Ocean) and BeLeaved - I love these Be colors!!

On Thursday, I started a freebie from By the Bay Needleart - I have really become quite obsessed with their designs lately, and actually have my LNS ordering in a couple of them for me. So I started the freebie on Thursday night, worked on it Friday night, too - and was compelled to finish it up Saturday :)

On Friday, I got my 2nd RR for last year back from Shawn - it has come out so pretty!!! And I get to do the last few bands!! I actually did 2/3 of one at lunch today :) :) Thank you all who worked on the two pieces I sent out last year - I need to get the first one stretched and in it's frame, and then get a matching frame for this 2nd one, as soon as I get it done :)

I then worked on my new RR, this time Carolyn's ABC Zoo Sampler from Blue Ribbon. This is such a neat design, and she picked such a pretty thread for it. She had the boxes for A & B done, and B was complete, so I did A, and got it done. That Alligator had a frog issue while I was working on the bumpy back, but I figured it out without too much pain - if I'd paid better attention at the beginning, I'd have kept the frogs at bay. Anyway, I got A done, and got a small start on the next box for C:

And lastly, I did actually work on my main piece for the week, Knotgarden. For some reason, this 3rd Giant Green Corner seems a LOT bigger than the other 2 did... I thought for sure I'd get into the garden bit, but maybe I was pushing my luck with all the other stuff I worked on all week :)

The overall to date is here.

And that's all I did last week :) This week is Sampler Week; AD Samplar 4 Saisons will get some time, and I'm hoping to do some more on 6 Bats, too; would like to finish that up so I can start concentrating on this year's Halloween projects :) I may work on my returned RR during lunch this week and see if I can't get that finished up, too. Who knows what all I'll work on? Until next week, Happy Stitching everyone!

Thursday, January 14, 2010

When Worlds Collide - an RAK :)

Tracy was talking about pepper jelly on her blog one day, and that got Tina & I off onto our own tangent. I used to know a lady who made it every fall, but as I don't know where she is now, I haven't had any for a while - and it looks a little more labor-intensive to make than I'm willing to invest right now. So Tina told me she has some locally - and I googled the Southeast US stores I have access to, and no one in the greater Atlanta area seems to carry any. How can that be? Anyway, Tina said she'd pick some up, next time she was there.

While she was in Paris over the holidays, she saw one of the Cluny tapestries in Musee du Moyen Age, and there was a book there on them; she thought of me (and my insanity at working one of them from SQ), and sent that book along with the pepper jelly!

Not pictured - a jar of Red pepper jelly - it's already been opened and is in the fridge - only because I ran out of cream cheese already :(

I opened that box up, and pulled out the book - everyone in the house recognizes the picture on the cover, even if only vaguely. It's a very nice history of the tapestries, and the various theories surrounding the pieces - I can only imagine seeing them in person! Then I pulled out each jar of jelly and unwrapped them from their protective coverings - and I was met with questioning looks from a couple of kids (and at least one dog had her nose going). "What's that for?" "Ummm, you eat it, on crackers with cream cheese?" I know they go to public school, but jeez, JELLY is kinda self-explanatory, innit? They both backed away, looking at me like I was totally out of my tree. Though the Big one did come back out later and asked if he could taste it - then promptly spit the cracker I'd given him out into the trashcan!!!! WTF??? "Hey, don't waste that!" All of which means "IT'S ALL MINE!!!!!!" Though I think DH has eaten if before, too, but I think cream cheese creeps him out. Some people don't know what they're missing...

Thank you, Tina! I will enjoy both jelly & book, and try to keep one from the other :)

Monday, January 11, 2010

A Cold January Update

And I know cold here isn't cold like elsewhere, but after almost 16 years here, I am completely acclimatized, so all these days below freezing, I am COLD! After last week's snow "storm" (we got less than 1/2" from our house, to less further south), there are roads still closed all over, because it hasn't gotten warm enough to melt off (like it usually does), and my kids are out of school again today. This has been the coldest fall & winter since we've been here, and there's months to go still :( Time to move!! I wish :) AZ is looking better & better! But, I am thankful that we didn't lose power over any of it - this sustained cold here tends to make things break here, since we aren't equipped to deal with this for more than a few days (knocking furiously on wood). Here's the "storm" out my front door last Thursday - as of yesterday, that was all ice in the yard, hopefully melted & gone by the time I get home today, if we do indeed get over freezing as predicted.

Onto the stitching! You've seen my new LNS pictures by now, I'm sure. I hope to go to this week's stitch in tomorrow - depends on how tired I am after work tomorrow (this cold is taking it out of me more than usual). I am really looking forward to visiting that store often. It's by no means one-stop shopping for me, with a lack of Carrie's and a lot of European charts like Long Dogs, but the other fibers and fabrics, and the charts they do have are pretty great - and who knows what I can talk them into carrying? LOL

SINCE I found a piece of fabric for Mary Wigham while I was there, and because there seems to be this rash of startitis going around (Jodie VBI), I caved and began Mary Wigham :) I told you before it was screaming at me; well, the only way to stifle it was to start it. And since it's being done over-1, it ought to be quick, huh? Yeah, that's what I said about that littlest Foursome Reel, huh? Oh well, so far, so good:

I am just randomly choosing HDF silks as I go, though I do know the carnation will be done in green & red. All of those Be's I got in the fall, and a few more that I ordered last week, will be in this, as well as some Mystery Spools, Detritus, and whatever else feels the need to make an appearance :) I really, really like this French Country linen - it's so easy to work on, even with the odd slub here & there. I think in the picture you can see how distinct the holes are in this 32ct - this is easier than some of the 28ct I've worked over-1. Might have to invest in more of this for future samplers :)

Other than that, I got back to my regular rotation, and did a good bit on the fountain scene in EGS. I could actually keep working on this, since I finally got back in the groove on it (I just wasn't in the mood for it the last couple of times it's been up) - but I really want to work on Knotgarden tonight, too, so time to rotate! I am debating on modifying the peacock tail colors - the symbols using the BF look off to me, but I will have to wait until I get the other symbols stitched to make a final verdict - and I left the black thread in with the actual filament, and I might need to redo just that. We'll see next time - unless I avoid that area and keep going along the top part...

And that's all I worked on last week! I'm still just reading at lunch - plowing through book 3 of the Outlander series now, I think for the 3rd or 4th time now. Somehow, I see me reading them all through again - I can't put them down! I also picked up copies of The Fountainhead & Atlas Shrugged at Borders yesterday - a couple more gaps to be filled in my classics reading. Only because they didn't have the trade paperback version of Rutherfurd's Russka in stock - it's the only non-current of his I haven't read yet.

As I mentioned above, back to Knotgarden tonight. Today is our anniversary, but we are going to wait and do dinner on Friday, so we don't have to jam it in before rushing home to go to bed to get up to go to work - and it's supposed to be warmer by then :) I should have my new RR arrive this week, to, so maybe some work on that, too! And you know me - who knows what else will go on? LOL Until next week, happy stitching (and reading) everyone!!

Monday, January 04, 2010

The First Update of the New Decade

I'll try to do a little catching up here, since I missed a week or two :) You've seen my recap of 2009 already. We survived Christmas and the trip to Cocoa, and I had a great time at Kennedy.

The week of Christmas, since my schedule was all screwed up with getting ready for Florida, I decided to not bother with my rotation for the week,and just work on stuff that doesn't get much time. So for the few days before we left, I worked on Celtic Banner :) I love this piece - it really deserves more time.

The whole time we were in FL, I was only able to get in about 40 stitches - and I didn't crack my book open but for a few minutes, either. I put the only stitches into Lyne's wedding sampler - barely enough to even notice, but hey, it's all I did for 7 days, so I need to write it down.

One day of the week of Christmas, I got out my RM RR and got the top blue flower added to the stalk I started. That's all I'm doing on it :) It is packed up and ready to go to the PO, either today or tomorrow. I hope everyone likes working on it!

I also threw some beads in with it, in case anyone would rather bead than French Knot - entirely up to whoever has those sections :)

I didn't pick up a needle again until New Year's Night, and since again the week was hosed, didn't bother with rotation, but again worked on a couple of pieces that don't get enough time :) Friday night & Saturday afternoon, I worked on Chat Noir - I was thinking about Booger, and Lori, and thought it was time to put some more stitches in. Lotsa orange, and some black - it's hard to tell, but I added a few hundred stitches, mostly on Page 2.

And then, Saturday night and yesterday, I worked on World Tree. I really, really wish I had more time on this one, too - it was hard to get going on it this time, I guess my eyes were too tired for the over-1. But I did get to a big section of black, after confetti-ing myself to death - and left lots of confetti around the black for later.

This week, back to the normal routine, whatever that is. I should get out EGS tonight, but I might work on my current RR piece instead - Lyne sent her choice early, to get it off her To DO list around Christmas. I looked at it when it got here, but haven't touched it since. That'll be a nice way to ease back into the routine. Right now, though, I am off to the new LNS opening today!! The Stitch Store used to be The Dogwood Patch, before Terrie decided to move - and now I have to pass the place on my way to and from work! This is going to be dangerous! AND she's about 500 yards from where my DH works now (they moved over the summer) - so shopping for me just became infinitely easier :) We do have an anniversary next week Happy stitching this week to everyone - and here's hoping 2010 is a great year for needleworks!!!!