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Sunday, November 28, 2010

Birds Galore

Hi dear friends!  I hope you had a fabulous Thanksgiving.  Can you believe with all the cooking I do around this place I have never cooked a turkey?  We have always gone to either my mother's or my mother-in-law's for Thanksgiving and Christms dinner so I have never had to cook a turkey.  This year, we stayed home for Thanksgiving and I made my first turkey.
Ain't she a beauty?!  LOL  I cooked her on our grill and was very pleased with the result.  She weighed 13 pounds and only took 2-1/2 hours to cook.  I highly recommend cooking turkey on the grill as it was much moister and flavorful than oven roasted turkey.

 Yesterday, I hauled out the decorations and started decking the halls.  I made a few of these cardinals using a coloring book page for the pattern and painted the details onto the fabric.  This one is displayed in an arrangement of pine, cedar, and holly I collected from our yard and arranged in a trifle bowl.
 And this one is the topper for my 4 foot Christmas tree.  I love cardinals!
 I also made a few of these skate ornaments from the "Sew Pretty Christmas Homestyle" book by Tone Finnanger.  They were a bit fiddly but worth the effort in the end.

I also managed to finish this ornament that I stitched last year.  The design is "A Spot of Christmas" by Milady's Needle from the JCS 2009 Christmas Ornament preview issue.  Doncha just love the little blue bird and the reindeer on this one?

Stitching continues on the LHN December Sampler.  I just can't seem to finish stitching this one.  Do you think maybe it is because I keep getting distracted by birds?  And skates?  :o)

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Happy Thanksgiving!


Design by Primitive Betty

I hope you and your family have an extra special Thanksgiving filled with lots of love and laughter.


Saturday, November 20, 2010

Sweet Saturday!

Ahhh, it is Saturday and I didn't have to work today.  I still got a call at 7:15 this morning because the computers wouldn't boot up but at least I didn't have to go in and deal with it.  HA!   This week was another tough one, still trying to hash out all the quirks of the new system.  Several of my co-workers bodies succummed to the stress and 3 of them were out sick with cold/flu and even the owner was out with a stomach bug.  I am dodging it as best I can - I don't have time to be sick!  Each week promises to be a little better if I could just keep everyone at work.  :o) 

A few weeks ago Daffycat posted a fabulous needleminder tutorial on her blog.  I am always searching my lap and table for my needle and I NEEDED a needleminder.  (say that 10 times very fast) 
 I am just thrilled with the way mine finished up.  I stitched the first one over 2 with DMC on 30 WDW linen and liked it so much I stitched another one over 1.  I backed them both with the red fabric.  Now maybe DH will stop "finding" my needles on the floor.  :o)  Thank you Sharon for sharing your tutorial!
And here is yet another one from the "vault".  LOL  I have searched and searched and know I still have this pattern somewhere but I can't remember the designer.  This was a self-framed piece and was in a plain brown frame.  I popped it out of that one and put it into this pretty one that Raffaella sent me for my birthday.  I don't know if it will stay here but I am pleased with it for now.  This design uses drawn thread work, specialty stitches, and beads.

I have cleaned house all evening - now it is time to sit down for some sewing and stitching.  I hope you are all having a fabulous weekend!

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Back a little more

While in the storage building this weekend, I unearthed a few more treasures.  Again, it was difficult to get good pictures because these were all professionally framed with glass.



As you can see, these were stitched in 1993.  (How can I possibly be this old?!?)  My boys were 6 years old then and I wonder how I had the time or patience to stitch these with twin 6 year old boys running around the house.   These are from the Leisure Arts Leaflet "The Seasons in Samplers" by Linda Culp Calhoun.  They incorporate a variety of techniques - specialty stitches, drawn thread, and cross stitch.
Now, how would you hang these to display them?  In a row of four?  A cross pattern - 1 on top and bottom with 2 in the center?  Two by two?  I really want to put them on a wall but can't decide.  Please help. 

Again, this leaflet is up for grabs if anyone is interested.  If more than one person is interested I'll draw names from a hat.  :o)

Monday, November 15, 2010

Flashback

Before I get to the flashback part, several of you asked about the Dirty Santa game I mentioned in my last post.  The way we play it at our company Christmas party is a bit different than the original but it sure is fun. Everyone brings five wrapped gifts, each valued at around $1.00. Then we take turns rolling a set of dice. If you roll a 7 or 11 you get to choose a gift OR you can steal a gift from someone else. We usually play quite a few rounds before we start stealing gifts and sometimes there are a couple of the $1.00 gifts that are quite coveted. It makes for a good hour of fun and fellowship after our meal without a lot of expense. I have played it before where each person brings one larger gift valued around $20.00 and the premise is the same.  When it is your turn you can choose a wrapped gift or steal someone else's gift.  So there you have it - Dirty Santa in a nutshell.  Now, what were you thinking?  ;o)

This weekend my son and I ventured into our storage building in an attempt to find our Lord of The Rings books.  He decided he wanted to read them again and I just knew they were in that building somewhere.  After opening and inspecting every box there were no LOtR books to be found but I did come across this:


Back in the early 1990's I enjoyed drawn thread work.  This is "Miniature Drawn Thread Sampler" by Linda Driskell stitched on 25 ct Dublin Linen using two sizes of pearl cotton.  I finished this one in 1994 and is one of the few pieces I have had professionally framed complete with suede mats.   I don't know why it has the word miniature in the title as it is far from mini in my book - the piece measures 6" x 14".
It was really tough to get a good picture through the glass but this closeup gives you some idea of how intricate this thing really is.  I can hardly believe I stitched it myself and I am still very proud of it.  It is now hanging on a wall in my dining room.  
I did a little googling and found that this book is still in print.  I have my old, battered, been in storage for 16 years copy and if anyone wants to give it a try I would be happy to send it along to you.  I know I won't be stitching another of these anytime in the near or distant future. 

P.S.  I ended up requesting the Lord Of The Rings books from Paperbackswap.com. 

Sunday, November 14, 2010

A Better Week

Hello dear friends!  Thank you all so much for your kind thoughts and prayers for me this past week.  I am happy to say it was a better week at work though not any less stressful.  We are all working well as a team and helping each other through the transition to the new software. 

Yesterday, DH and I made a road trip to Bed Bath and Beyond to pick up some coffee for our Tassimo machine and you know the car just navigated to JoAnn's as well.  :o)  No big purchases but I did find some nice trims and buttons and some neat $1.00 items for the dirty Santa game at our hospital Christmas party.  We ended the trip with lunch at Olive Garden.  I just love their salad and ate my fill while there.  It was nice to get out and about with my husband for a change and just enjoy the day.

As you can see I managed to finish the "Hearts Come Home" design into a pillow ornament.  I tea dyed the pom pom fringe to closer match the linen and the button was one of the purchases at JoAnn's yesterday.  It is a bit larger than I had originally envisioned but will still work well on a full sized tree or as a doorknob hanger.  I fluffed up his beard with a small brush as it is stitched with Rainbow Gallery's Fuzzy Stuff. 


In the little time I have had for stitching this week I have been working on my LHN December Sampler.  I hope to get it finished this week as I am itching to start on the Hare's Christmas kit Mary gave me.  I have also been working on some needleminders using Daffycat's tutorial but the magnets I have just aren't strong enough.  I guess that will mean a trip to Hobby Lobby sometime in the near future.  :o) 

I hope you all had a great weekend and will have an even better week ahead!

Sunday, November 7, 2010

What a Week!

Happy Sunday Dear Friends!  This has been a crazy week for me - we installed new software at work and I am exhausted.  I have a huge learning curve to overcome as I have been using our current software for 10 years.  With the old software, I didn't even need to look at the screen to do most things.  I knew exactly how many clicks of the mouse, tabs, and enters I needed and didn't have to think about it.  Long hours this week didn't allow for much stitchy/sewing time so I spent most of today in the sewing room.

I am working on finishing up this ornament and trying to decide on buttons, trim, and hanger.  I do know that some tea dyed pom pom trim will be involved.  :o) 
This is a Homespun Elegance design - Wooly Tyme Club December.

I also worked on some of the zippered project bags as it is about time for another little giveaway soon and those seem to be very popular in my giveaways.  Stay tuned...

There was an extra special delivery this week as well.  On Friday when I really needed a little pick me up this beauty arrived in the mail as a belated birthday gift from Mary.
Isn't is gorgeous?  It is an Erica Michaels design, Random Thoughts of Autumn and I had admired it when Mary posted it as a WIP on her blog.  The picture really doesn't do it justice - there are pretty beads, the ribbon is just gorgous, and those little bows atop the pumpkins are so cute!  She also gifted me with 2 charts from my wish list - Hare's Christmas with linen and floss and Dog Lessons for People.  I squealed more than once when opening these lovelies.  Thank you so much Mary - you really surprised me and I am delighted with everything.

I hope you all have a wonderful week ahead.  If you have some good thoughts to send my way I (and my poor co-workers) am probably going to need them.  :o)