Sunday, May 29, 2016

All Over the Place

Yes, that's me.   Project jumping yet again.   As if I don't have enough irons in the fire (i.e. that wallpaper removal project I got myself into.....) I started another major overhaul.  This one is a LARGE flower bed.    Over the years the ground cover has just expanded and expanded.....the look I thought I liked I have now grown (ha ha) tired of.   I want the clean lines of shrubs and mulch....neat, crisp, clean.   When I am done, this side will better match the other landscaping I have in the front yard.

Look how far PAST the bed edging the ground cover had grown.
I have only managed a few hours here and there after work.  And all the rain we have had has not helped.   I think if I had 3 more pairs of hands and some rain free evenings, I could get this done more quickly.  Well at least this just lets me work outside in the garden which is always so nourishing for the soul.   I haven't make quite the width of the bed to the property line but slow and steady wins the race.
This is will be ALL summer job!
This year's goal will be to go as far as the large Abelia bush.......I think it is doable (as do all my undertakings when I launch them!)

Yesterday I meet with friends to work on a finishing project.    We all have stitched Pining to Stitch and finishing is so much more productive with a group.   Not to mention it helps conquer that fear factor we all have.
After putting in all those button hole bars on the scissors got it, I decide I'd rather have cording.
 Not to difficult to remove them. Messy with bits of threads everywhere.
At this point, I am almost satisfied to just leave it with no trim.

I have all the pieces of the set stitched.  I have finished the biscournu, the scissors fob, 90 percent done the scissors haven.....that leaves me the needle book, pin keep and the envelope pouch that will hold all the pieces to finish.   We are expecting torrential rain starting tonight so I am hopeful to  make some progress tomorrow.  

Last weekend I pulled out a UFO.   This is Lizzie Kate's "Things Unseen Mystery Sampler".   Here is where I was last week.    I am sure there was another project that just had to be started and had me move this to the UFO basket.

And this morning.      I've turned the corner.   Some border, some wording, a couple of motifs, buttons and beads and I will be done!  My goal is to complete this by my next guild meeting in two weeks.  No pressure.....especially since yard word has me falling asleep not much after I finally sit in my stitching chair in the evening.

And let me jump back outside again, we are re-doing our back deck replacing the wood with Trex decking.   We did the same out front a few years ago.  Yeah for more powering washing, scrubbing, and restaining every other year.  However, we are at a standstill......contractor had gotten ill and we are not finished.   No worries for picnic plans for us this weekend.  The decking is done so I can pull up a chair and sip a cuppa and stitch or read with no problem.  I don't need railings to enjoy the outdoors and am actually enjoying the unobstructed view.   It is just another slow and steady project.  Give me lemons and I will make lemonade.

 Colors along my side walk are so much prettier in real life.
 My morning cup of coffee view.......
This is the vision I have for the project I am working on.

And of course, I can't post without a pix of Will.   I can't believe he is four weeks old already!    
He looks all relaxed after his bath taking over daddy's side of the bed.  

OK, time to head out and get my veggies planted before the rain starts.....

Wishing all a wonderful Memorial Day Weekend.   Enjoy your parades, your picnics and take a moment to remember your service men and women.

Saturday, May 28, 2016

May Guild Project

At my May DVHSG Meeting one of our members bagged up beads and wires and scissors and gave us a tutorial on a beaded scissors fob.   The sheath 'snaps' on the point of the scissors.   So nice for carrying about and not fear a puncture into your project!

Like I needed another pair of scissors or two.   

And after 14 days of raining, clouding damp days,  I just had to stop and take a picture of the world on my way home from grocery shopping.  

Thursday, May 12, 2016

Mother's Day and More

I had a great Mother's Day spending it with No. 1 daughter at her home.   It started with flowers from her.  Her husband made us a delicious brunch and then she and I crafted all day.   A friend of her's joined us....missing her kiddos, ages 6 and 3, because her husband took them camping for the weekend.   Wow, where were dad's like 35 years ago?   At any rate, we laugh and enjoyed the day together.

This is what I accomplished on Sunday.  At my d-in-l's baby shower, my daughter had guests color pre-cut blocks with baby themes.   She pieced them together for a baby quilt top.   I quilted them up quickly with the help of a new trick my daughter taught me....spray basting.   Life changing product!

I love the little personalized blocks and love the backing fabric she choose.   Her idea really came together.   I washed and dried and packed it up to delivery in person.

Monday morning I was on the road heading west to visit the baby.   I did gramma duty at my son's.  I have been chauffeuring for lacrosse practice,  grocery getting, dinner cooking and laundry doing.    Somewhere I even had some baby time.  I got my craft on while my Little Mr. Wonderful slept.    I quilted this for him.   I had the front and backs already pieced.  Spray basting made this EZ PZ to put together.

Will all snuggled down under the blanket Aunt Amy knitted.

I made progress on my knitted baby blanket.   (oops! too busy with baby pix to snap a photo of the baby blanket)

Stitched my name on my sweatshirt for work - it gets so cold in the office some days - we all went to the uniform clerk and got zip up hoodies.

And last but not least, one of my favorite pix, father and son taking a nap.

Heading home in the morning and knowing I will be missing Little Man.

Saturday, May 7, 2016

Fits and Starts

I seem to accomplished not a thing so far this weekend except for balancing my checkbook and cleaning the bathroom.   I have started about a half dozen jobs.  Fits and Starts is what my M-in-L used to call it.   These fits of mine have lead me down the rabbit hole and the oft asked question....what was I thinking when I bought this? what did I plan for this? or why are these bundled  fabrics together?  Not to mention, I seemed to have also lost April!  Where did it go?

I have a week of vacation this week to head west and visit that new grand baby and of course, help my d-in-l.  The new parents are very sleep deprived.....I remember those days.  Somehow we get through it.  Just let grams get there and help.  I am sure I will have a pix or two to share of my Will snuggle time when I return.  As well as I am sure there will be more snuggle time then project work to share.

I finished my pre-stitching which was a breeze.....except for those darned bees!  Three stitches is all they are and I manage to put them two threads too high, or two threads too low or, flying the wrong way.  Frog, frog, frog!  Silly, you can stitch a row of herringbone cross no problem.  I can almost hear the ocean waves and porch rockers calling me from my upcoming June class.

I have moved back to concentrating on my Pining To Stitch smalls as my main stitching project.  The last piece I need to complete is the needle book.  The pattern requires paying attention a little more then the other pieces so it is not  a piece to carry to work.   For this week in Grammy-Land, I am taking my sewing machine and hope to work on completing the fabric pouch the pieces are to be housed in.  Great expectations right?  A group of us are getting together on Memorial Day weekend to work on the actual finishing of the smalls and I'd like to have my bag done, at a minimum,  by then.  I am sure I am being a little over zealous in what I think I can accomplish between laundry, cooking and cleaning for the new parents.

I also started to knit a baby blanket.  Now nothing like waiting until the baby got here.  I did attempt this with several starts, both knitted and
crocheted, and several times of pulling it off the needles and rewinding the yarn.  I sat next to a friend at a guild meeting and she was knitting a baby blanket using the same pattern I use for making wash cloths and it was a light bulb moment!  Why not?  I have spent so much time in the car lately driving here and there that if only I could knit and drive I could've done by now if only.....I guess it is best for everyone that I stick to a book on tape while I drive.   My current read is the second trilogy by Petra Durst-Benning, "While the World Is Still Asleep".  It does make the ride more enjoyable to listen on tape as I go as well as a good read while on the treadmill when at home.  I read her first trilogy last year, "The Glassmaker's Daughter", and enjoyed the series.  It is light, easy reading.

Next up on the stitching front, I am changing out my challenge pieces for my guild challenge.  What was I thinking when I put humongous projects on my list?  Thank goodness we are able to do a  mid-year swap out.   I need to do a little more than a simple stitching bag sorting this weekend as well as craft room sorting.  Not much else one can do on this 13th day of rain here on the east coast.   I think I can almost hear the weeds growing in my gardens.   I already lost an hour in my craft room this morning when I went to put something away.  It is the room where anything I don't know where I want to put gets stashed.  And it seems to squash my creativity when it is out of order.  Having  a grand sort out of my craft room  is a good way to refresh the memory on what may be hiding up there and to spark the creative juices with something that may catch my eye differently this time around.  After spending the day up there I hope to have a new, more manageable lists of challenge pieces ready to switch up at my June meeting but first to tackle the kitchen, dining room and bedroom and get them shipshape before I play in my craft room.

OK, break over, back to work....

May your stitches be many and your frogging be nonexistent! Happy stitching all.

Saturday, April 30, 2016

Something I thought would never be

The words me and grandmom in the same sentence.   Little William Geoffrey was born yesterday morning at 10:18 a.m., 8 lbs., 8 oz., 21 1/2 inches long with a healthy set of lungs.

Such joy.  We were making the drive out for (3 1/2 - 4 hours) the scheduled c-section, planning to leave home around 7.  We got a text the she was in labor around 4:45 a.m.   We left a little quicker than intended and arrived to meet our first grandchild.   

Just the whole miracle of life is so mind boggling that two cells join and make this!    This is now my wall paper on my iPad and cell phone.  

OK, I guess I just could continue to gush but I will do my best to suppress it.  Needless to say we are over the moon with little man.   I just wish they didn't live so far away.   I see many a weekend trip in my future.  

To catch up on last weekend, I was at my semi-annual retreat to Salty Yarns in OCMD.   It was another great weekend.   Weather did not allow for stitching on the porch rockers and I really missed that.   However, there was much laughter and fun with friends (24 of us!), great food, good times.   

I picked up my pre-stitching for a Betsy Morgan class in June.   Not much to it and easily doable.    I hope to finish up once I am back home. 
This is the finished piece which I just really liked from the time I saw it on Swan Sampler Guild last summer.  Do I need it, no, but that is a whole other issue.  This will be my first Betsy Morgan class and I have been told it is a real treat to have her as a teacher.   She did speak at my guild earlier this year and I got a preview of her teacher style.   She is a very sweet, talented and sharing lady.    I am looking forward to the June class.

Something else from OCMD.   My friend Diane from Tennessee makes the semi annual trip to meet us at Salty Yarns.  She gifted us with these pretty project bags.  She picked them up at the marketplace at a retreat she attended in Marietta GA.   They are from none other then Faye at the Caroline Stitcher.   I have been a follower of her blog for years.   She does beautiful finishing and  I love the top stitches and embellishments she adds to her finishing.   Each of our bags had different linings and I should have photographed the french seams on the inside.  This present was doubly wonderful to receive.   (Thanks again Diane!  You are the best.)

Finished my second cup of coffee and time to head to the hospital for some more snuggle time with little man. 

Monday, April 18, 2016

Hangin in there

I do love Bleeding Hearts.   This may need
transplanting into a shady spot.


What a difference a week makes.   Feeling much more in control of my life.  Spring has sprung and it is so awesome to be able to enjoy the seasons!  Let's see if I can be brief with a catch up on what is up in my neck of the woods.

So enjoying the trees coming into leaf.   Camera doesn't catch the variety of greens I can see from my deck.

I did take a time out from the weed pulling to stitch a bit on Saturday.

This would not be one of the gardens I have cleaned up.
It is begging for my attention.
Got a couple or three flower beds done with my divide and conquer method.  Vegetable garden has been tilled and is ready to plant. Last weekend we had three inches of snow, today I was working in the garden beds.  Go figure!  No where near done getting the yard in shape but it felt good to get my hands in the soil.   Feels good except for how dry my hands know how the soil just pulls the moisture out of them.

I have also been trying to purge my clothes closet.  (I know, I am spreading myself across half a dozen tasks again.)  I have made walking into the closet miserable  because I refuse to throw anything out just in case I drop five or ten pounds.  Well, I been having that argument with myself long about five years.  It is time.  I just see dollar signs when I fold and bag it up.  But the frustration of not being able to hang everything up and the frustration of so many clothes that don't fit now outweighs any thought of the cost.   I am doing a full top to bottom sort of every drawer and every will feel good to have a nice neat closet/dressing area.  It just might take me a couple of weeks.

I am happy to report as of Sunday night I finished Jeannette Douglas My Stitching Treasures.  I made a vow to myself come heck or high water I would get it done this weekend.   I have been a lazy stitcher this winter.....time to get it in gear.  Good thing I'm done because I will be picking up my pre-stitching for my Betsy Morgan class in June at Salty Yarns at the end of the week.

 I am using the beads and charms I have on hand but may 
need a charm or two more from Salty Yarns.  
A few more beads, mounting on backer board and move this to the completed column.

Mr. W. started a fire for me on Sunday night,  What a nice way to end the weekend.   Fire, 
glass of wine, current book I am reading and Simon and Garfunkel playing in the 
background.  It was a refreshing weekend...

Need to start my list and get packing for OCMD.   Have a couple of little things I want to finish and maybe a new Jeannette Douglas start.....which I hope to adapt to the colors of the My Stitching Treasures box.

Have a great week all.   May your stitches be many and your frogs few.