Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Over the Hump!

Well friends as Wednesday winds down we are over the hump and can start looking forward to the weekend.  It has been raining like mad here today but I am not complaining.  We needed it so desperately.  DH is keeping a close eye on his watermelons (we have 3) and is hoping the rain will give them a growth spurt.  We may be harvesting watermelons on Halloween!  LOL

I finished up another little ornament for my Halloween tree.

28 ct evenweave/DMC floss

I just couldn't resist this leggy bird with her purple pumpkin and witch hat.  :o)  I finished it rather primitively with a few decorative stitches from my sewing machine.  I am not sure if this will qualify as an entry for the Great Pumpkin Challenge or not.  It does have a tiny pumpkin motif but I envision it as one of those plastic ones we all used to take trick or treating when we were kids.  Remember those?

I sent out a couple of RAK's earlier this week and I just wanted to say a few words about those.  It occurred to me that someone might feel obligated to send me something in return.  Please know that is not why I send these out.  I send these without any expectations or obligations.  I am a firm believer that what comes around goes around and if I can bring a smile to someone's face with one of my little creations that makes me very happy.  I love cross stitch but I also love to sew.  Many times I will see something on the internet or in a book that I just have to try.  Sometimes they turn out well and sometimes they don't.  When they do I like to share them.  My 22 year old boys aren't really into things like project bags and pincushions and I don't have many friends or family members that appreciate the beauty of handmade items.  So, that is where my dear stitching and blogging friends come in.  You may not like what I choose to send you and that is okay too - just know that I thought about you and was trying to bring a smile to your part of the world.  If you were here I would probably be dancing around like a fool and cracking jokes instead because that's what I do.  I make things and give them away because that is what I do too.  :o)

Okay, enough of that.  I found another pattern for a cutie that I just have to try out.  Time to get busy!

Sunday, September 26, 2010

We have a winner!

Today is the 3 year anniversary of this blog and this is my 339th post.  :o)  Who knew when I started this thing that I would meet so many kind and generous people, many of whom have become very good friends.  Thank you all for your kind words, comments, and support.

The winner of the mish mash box of goodies is Bonnie of The Stitcher's Abbey!  Congratulations Bonnie - I hope you enjoy all the little things I made.   

Two More

I added two more goodies to the giveaway box.  (Plus a few little surprises too.) :o)
A fall themed project bag.

And a candle mat with a mulled cider scented candle.  :o)
Jolene inadvertently assisted me in the making of this candle mat as I used scraps of some fabric she sent to me.  Doesn't she have great taste in fabric.?

If you haven't entered your name in my drawing yet, run - don't walk, to my post of September 1st and leave a comment.  LOL  I will be choosing a winner around 7:30 this evening.

Friday, September 24, 2010

Another pretty

This gorgeous pin arrived in my mailbox yesterday.
It was made by my dear friend Norma.  It is in my favorite color and just look at that cute face!  I have already taken her for a test drive on the lapel of my winter coat - won't I be stylin'?  She also sent a little snowman cross stitch ornament kit which will make a nice addition to my tree.  Thank you so much Norma.  I truly feel blessed.

As you can see I finished my LHN September sampler just in the nick of time.  It is sitting on my mantle amongst my other fall decorations.  I can hardly wait to see what LHN will offer for the final installment of this series.

Thursday I spent quite a bit of time sewing and have made a project bag, and a bird ornament to add to the giveaway box.  I plan to put one more thing together this weekend before calling the giveaway complete.  I also worked on a couple of RAK's that will be winging their way outta here soon.   :o)

I hope you all have some wonderful plans for the weekend doing whatever it is that you love to do. 

Thursday, September 23, 2010

The Great Pumpkin Challenge

I decided to join in on Becky's Great Pumpkin Challenge 2010.  I am thinking this is a way to motivate me to finish a few more fall items before I go into Christmas stitching mode.  :o)  Here is my first finish:

Freebie from Homespun Elegance
(portion of design)
28 ct dirty linen/DMC fibers
Finished as a flat ornament

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Many Thanks!

A big thanks to all of you who commented on my exchange pieces yesterday.  I am still admiring the pillow Julianne sent me and it looks so pretty displayed with Mini Ziggy.  :o)

Carol sent me this wonderful Halloween ornament for my birthday. 
Isn't it cute?  Carol does the prettiest stitching and finishing.  I told her I want to be able to stitch like her when I grow up.  :o)  The design is by The Trilogy.  I just love all the little motifs and the orange bow is perfect!  Check out the little ghost she used in her signature on the back.  Toooo cute!  Thank you so much Carol for making my day extra special.

When I arrived home from work today there was another package waiting for me.  (I just love surprises, don't you?  Sweet Vera (no blog yet but we have to work on that LOL)  whom I met through Peggy Lee's blog sent me this wonderful little pillow.

Isn't it fabulous!  Pardon my terrible photo skills but it has the most gorgeous aubergine color in the tassels.  The little charms at the top say "September" and "Virgo" and the little crescent moon charm is a wonderful purple color as well.  Vera does some pattern designing herself and I am hoping we will see more of her lovely creations soon.  Thank you so much my friend for making me feel so special for my birthday.

I will leave you with a photo of another visitor to my yard.  He gave me quite a shock when I first noticed him.  :o)
I remember seeing these as a child and they always had a darker zig zag pattern in the center of their web.  As kids we would always scare each other by telling the others that if the spider wrote your name in his web you would die!  Then we would tentatively check the web each day to make sure our name didn't appear. 

I have the day off tomorrow and I plan to spend it in the sewing room.  I hope to have a couple of new things to add to my giveaway box.  There is still time to enter if you haven't already done so.  Just hop over to my post of September 1st and leave a comment.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Autumn Exchange

I was invited to participate in a private autumn exchange and look at what arrived in my mailbox!

Isn't it just gorgeous!?  (The pillow, not mini Ziggy - he is being my Vanna White right now.)  Julianne had my name and she made this wonderful pillow with a design by the The Trilogy.  Her stitching and finishing is impeccable and I just love the black ric rac trim.  The little blackbird button is a real treat too!  Lucky, lucky me to have received this beauty.  Thank you Julianne!

I had the honor of stitching for Susan and since she has let me know it has been received I will show you a picture of it too.  :o)

Waxing Moon Designs
28 ct evenweave/DMC floss

I sanded, painted, distressed, and waxed another of those little frames I had, mounted the needlework, added some raffia and voila!  I am glad Susan likes it as I really enjoyed stitching and finishing it for her.

I have lots more to blog about but I will save that for another day.  We can't share all the pretties at once now, can we?  :o)

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Some Finishing

I puttered around in the sewing room this evening and managed to finish 3 more ornaments to add to my Halloween tree.  I do believe I will stay with the homemade tree through Halloween and then switch over to the new tree.  I know it is too early to be decorating for Halloween but I do love seeing all my Halloween stuff and a mere month just doesn't seem long enough to look at it all.  :o)
Waxing Moon Designs

Ink Circles
Primitive Needle
I finished all of these as flat ornaments but I don't think I will try that again.  I am much better at stitching pillow ornaments and will stick with them in the future.  I had a tough time with these, just couldn't get the fabric to lie down after folding to the back,  and spent an enormous amount of time putting them together. 

I am off to frame my LHN September monthly sampler now.  :o)

Mother Nature

Mother Nature can really put on a show - when you least expect it.  When I opened the curtains in my sewing room this morning I saw all this color in the field next to my house.  I just had to grab the camera and head outside in my PJ's to snap a few pictures.
Is this goldenrod?
Morning Glory - September's Flower
As I was typing this, I looked out the window into the same field and saw our Mama deer and her two babies looking back at me.  :o) 

After admiring Faye's seasonal tree for quite some time, I headed out for Hobby Lobby yesterday with my 40% coupon to purchase one of my very own.  I had fashioned a Halloween tree from an old flower pot and a branch from the cedar we cut down in our yard.  I am trying to decide whether to leave the Halloween tree and wait to start using the new one or take this one down and redecorate.
New tree.  It has a more primitive style as when it is fluffed up the trunk peeks out between the layers of branches.  Decisions, decisons.  What do you think?

Monday, September 13, 2010

Giveaway Update

I thought you might want to take a peek at the things I have added to the giveaway box.
So far we have a treat bag with a pin pillow inside, a piece of 28 ct dirty linen, and the Honeysuckle Harmony pattern.  If you haven't left a comment to enter my birthday/blog anniversary giveaway yet you can find the post here.

On the sewing front - I managed to make two more candle mats last night.  This one to match the bench I recovered in my bedroom:

And this one for Christmas.  I think it is my favorite so far.  I fussy cut the squares for the prairie points to showcase the little dogs.  :o)  It also matches my Christmas stocking.
Some of you asked where I would be selling these.  Right now, mostly to friends and co-workers.  I have one on display at work so I may get some orders there too.  If you are interested, shoot me an email.  I have all colors and themes of fabric and some of it needs to be sewn up!

I hope you all had a wonderful start to the week.  My Monday was pretty good...for a Monday.  :o)

Sunday, September 12, 2010

More Sewing

Happy Sunday everyone!  I hope you have been able to enjoy some of the beautiful weather we have had here.  It is much cooler and the humidity is lower - just wonderful.

I have been spending some more time at the sewing machine.  I made this candle mat and am thinking of making up some of these to sell.  (It would look nicer if I had a candle in a color to match.)  It is quilted and measures 10" square.  I am trying to decide what a fair price might be.  I am thinking in the $10-$12 range, what do you think?  Along with a jar candle it would make a nice $15-$20 gift.
Since I have been in such an autumn mood and you can't walk in my backyard without stepping on acorns or their shells, I made up an acorn pin pillow.  If you visit McCall's website and sign up, they have several free patterns.  The acorn pattern was for a pillow and coasters and I just turned the coaster pattern into a pin pillow.
Lest you think I have given up cross stitch entirely:

"Halloween Cat"
design by Cathi
28 ct natural linen/CC & DMC

Off to do more sewing now.  I hope you all have a fantastic day!

Monday, September 6, 2010

Sing a song of sixpence...

... a pocket full of rye. Four and twenty blackbirds baked in a pie! I couldn't get that little ditty out of my head all day. Here are the results of my labors on Labor Day. I had lots of fun dressing these little guys. The pattern for the bird is from the Tilda book "Sew Pretty Christmas Homestyle"but I changed it up a bit to suit my need for autumn things. Let me introduce you to my flock:



and last but not least

I think I am going to make a garland with raffia or twigs and have lots of these "flying" underneath my mantle this fall.

I did find some information on John T. Pullen whose name was in the little book I found. (Gotta love those Google guys) Pullen Memorial Baptist Church still exists in Raleigh, NC - it was begun in 1884. Mr. Pullen was a lay leader in the church. I sent an email to the church secretary to see if she can help me with a little more information on the book itself. I found it very interesting to read about the history of the church.

Back to the grind tomorrow folks! I hope you all had a wonderful, relaxing weekend.

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Treasure Hunting

Hi dear friends! I am still recuperating from two days with 8 houseguests and about to return to normal. I was so glad to see and spend time with my in-laws, niece, and nephews and am happy to report that Earl spared their area. When they returned home yesterday they called to say it didn't even look as if a storm had been nearby.

A big thank you to everyone for the comments and well wishes on my last post and for entering my giveaway. I am still thinking of what to put into the box - I have lots of ideas. If you haven't entered, there is still plenty of time.

DH and I decided to stroll through the flea market today. We were looking for a saw to cut down a cedar in our front yard that is leaning quite precariously over our driveway. (Actually, DH was looking for a saw. I had other treasures in mind. LOL) DH did find his saw for $2.00 and I was rewarded with these for my $3.00 investment. :o)

I found the beautiful hand crocheted table scarf first. It is quite large and will be very pretty draped over my mantle. I can't help but think of all the work someone put into this beauty and I was able to purchase it for $1.00. At another booth I spotted the little book first and didn't ask the price because I thought it would be more than my $5.00 budget could stand. I then saw the skeleton key and paid $1.00 for it. Then I asked the price of the book and he said I could have it for $1.00 too. It was a day for dollars and I have 2 dollars left over for my next treasure hunt. :o)
Here is a picture of the inside showing the dedication. The copyright is 1906. I thought it was in amazing condition to be 104 years old. The leather binding shows very little wear and the ribbon page marker is still intact. When I find these old things I always try to imagine what the stories behind them might reveal. I have to wonder if John T. Pullen was a pastor and gave these as gifts to new members of his church. And where did he live? I might just have to do a little research to see if I can find a little more information on John T. Pullen. I was thrilled to have found these little treasures and am happy to give them a second life in my home.

Lola stayed inside for this photo session while my little familiar Ziggy acted as my assistant. Poor Ziggy has had another encounter with yellow jackets or fire ants, not sure which, but he has lots of little bumps and scabs on his ears. Crazy cat is so curious he will stuff his face in any hole he thinks might house a critter and sometimes he gets a big surprise.

I hope you are all able to enjoy a long Labor Day weekend. I have tomorrow off and am hoping to spend a little more time at the sewing machine.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Sweet September

September has always been one of my favorite months. It is also one of those months that brings on quite a bit of reflection. September is/was a big month for birthdays in my family - my oldest brother was born on the 4th, my mother on the 14th, and yours truly will celebrate her 47th on the 22nd. Since my brother and mother have both passed on I always spend time in the month of September thinking about them and remembering all the good times we had together.

This blog was also started in September. September 26th, 2007 to be exact. Wow! I can't believe I have been blogging for almost 3 years and have posted 326 times. Thank you dear readers for providing me with the inspiration and encouragement to keep on keeping on. I would also like to thank those of you who shared your addresses with me for my little RAK mission. I usually try to surprise someone at least once a month and just maybe it will be you next time. :o)

Now you know I couldn't let such milestones pass without also having a little giveaway of some sort. I really don't know what might end up in this giveaway as I just decided I needed to have one but you can bet it will involve some of this fall themed stuff you have been seeing in my blog posts. I have several other ideas for little projects involving fabric and the sewing machine and some of those will probably go into the giveaway as well. If you want to be entered in this giveaway to celebrate my birthday and my blog anniversary with me, just leave a comment on this post. I will draw a winner on September 26th. As I decide to add things to the giveaway, I will announce them here.

Now then. Do you want to see something cute? I mean really cute? I just think this little thing is so darn cute even if I did make it myself.

I told you it was cute! I set out to make a pumpkin pincushion that really looked like a pumpkin and this was the result. I am so enamoured with this little thing. (It doesn't take much to make me happy.) I am already envisioning several of these in different sizes and fabrics sitting on my mantle this fall.

I hope you are all enjoying a good week. My husband's family is evacuating from Carolina Beach tomorrow because Hurricane Earl is just too close for comfort. Please say a prayer for those in the storm's path as it has the potential to be a bad one for those on the east coast.