Saturday, February 25, 2017

2 today

Poor Mr. Daffodil is confused.   Hope we don't get a
March blizzard and freeze the little guy!
2 posts that it.

Wow, working outside in a t-shirt in February!  Unheard of but welcomed all the same.   I got home from setting up the Heart Ball Auction  (no, I don't attend; I would much rather be at home in my pj's stitching while my co-workers are dealing with bodyshapers and pantyhose and pinching high heels.  Mr. W. wouldn't go either and then you have to answer all those questions of why he won't come....) but I digress.....

I came home and went outside and did some yard work.  Crazy talk I know.   It felt so good to get out there and dig and scratch and rake to work off the stress.   I never realize what pressure the auction is until my part is done.   The items are unpacked and in place, their  easels with numbers and descriptions are by their sides, the room is dressed, the boxes are stowed and the rest is not my responsibility.








I let my mind go blank scratching in the garden.  No worries, no stress, nothing to think about anything but the next weed to pull.  And I love the 'tired' you get from yard work and then you look back and think ah....I see progress.




Started on the raised bed vegetable garden.   Don't mind my crazy path of clearing the chickweed.   There was a squirrel in the nearby tree that was not happy I was working there......so I moved on.

This spring I will remove more ivy (yes, MORE).  This time across the back property line.    I am just clearing up the edges to make a nice straight property line across the back for me.....

Signs of spring - my wheelbarrow full of garden waste.

Yuck, I need to put lattice or something around the nasty trash cans in the background.  And maybe a paver area around the fire pit.  
 My tulips are coming up too!
And new growth on the hydrangea...
I'd be out there still but a thunderstorm has blown in.  Yes, a thunderstorm in February. My mind is going in two directions with this weather......worries me if we got socked with the real winter weather, it will be brutal after this week of record breaking warmth.....or.....early spring and long hot summer...........hmm, the pool is scheduled for it's makeover in April........it will be what it is......time to wash up, make dinner, and stitch a bit on Corsica River!

My Week in Stitches

A quick update on my stitching progress.   Stealing minutes here and there to get a few stitches in.   Extra hours at work continue but I do see light at the end of this tunnel and IT IS NOT the oncoming training.

Uncle Sam is zooming along.    He is stitched to about his knees.   The rest of his pants should go quickly, then add his shoes.   The pattern is marked to stitch them in dark navy but I may change them to a brown.   I'll have to pull some colors and think about it.


I started my SAL Corsica River.   This is a Queenstown Sampler by Barbara Hutson - and how cool that she has joined our FB SAL page!  She has already shared info and detailed photos.

It is kind of hard to visualize but these are 36-inch scroll rods.

 And that is a 15-inch floor tile behind it........oh what have I gotten myself into here!

It actually is going nicely.   Easy for me to say since I am only halfway across row one of page one of  the pattern.    I am enjoying the fun of charting the path in and out on the blackwork.   I like the challenge.  If I keep up at this rate, I will be able to finish all of Row 1 in the 8 weeks I allowed for it.   It would be kind of a faux pas for me not to keep up since I am hosting the SAL and I created the schedule!  


I'm off to the convention center to set up the Silent Auction for the Annual AHA Gala and checking that job off as completed!  One major work project done and one to go.....then back to the normal bedlam!

Thanks for stopping by and happy stitching all.
SaveSave

Saturday, February 18, 2017

Sam is coming along

Alma Lynn designs from 1992, duplicate stitch pattern for a sweater.
I am amazed at how fast Uncle Sam is coming along.   This is a super great project for me right now.  



Still working mad, crazy hours including going into the office today.   I can get more done in four hours on a Saturday than I probably will accomplish on a full Monday and Tuesday!




I am allowing myself 15 to 20 minutes each morning before getting ready for work rather than an hour each morning.   As you can see, it is working.  I thought I was being extremely hopeful to attempt to finish by the 4th of July......as for now I am feeling like that is not unrealistic at all.


Sam is stitched on 18 count.   On a previous 18 ct. finishes I have used 3 and even 4 stands of floss.   I charged ahead here using only two strands but as fellow stitcher Pat pointed out, it gives him a more faded, weathered look and I am OK with that.   He is supposed to have a stitched flag but I will be using this flag instead....that is if I can attach it well enough to keep it sturdy and not from dipping down.    When the stitching is done, I will be finishing him to stand on an easel.  

As for me, hi ho, hi ho, it is off to work I go.

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

Blooming

Yeah!   Good things do come to those who wait.   One orchid bloom has popped and more on the way...


Sunday, February 12, 2017

A Detour or Two


Here is what I have been up to stitching wise this week.   Really moving along with Uncle Sam.   Was so excited as I sipped my second cup of coffee this morning to see how far I moved along.   Well......what I thought was the beard down the right hand side, it actually the vest, and the difference between "V" and an upside "V" on the color chart is gray and red.   Thank goodness this is stitched on 18 count.   Frogging will be a piece of cake.   My plan is to get this corrected by end of day.  On a good note, the bottom of the beard is the bottom of page one of the graph so that is encouraging.


I am getting ready to start my Corsica River Challenge (See Corsica River Stitch Along on Facebook or see this post) so  today I wanted to make sure I ran a basting stitch down the left hand side to avoid that sampler spraul that can happen and to mount this on my scroll frame.   Well.....another detour.....seems I need to order longer bars or if I can't find them on Amazon (already looked at a couple of cross stitch store websites) I will be sending the hubs to Home Depot for two 5/8's by 28 inch dowels.    That should be interesting.  I recently asked him to pick up a 3 1/2 inch by 42 inch piece of glass from the local auto glass store.   While giving him the existing piece of glass from my grandfather's clock that was mysteriously broken one day and no one knew who did it (albeit 20 years ago) and I am finally replacing it.   I tell him to get the cut 1/8 inch narrower than the old piece so I can ease it back into place easier.  Mr. W. takes my direction, takes my note, walks away and comes back after much thought and says......why do I want the thickness an 1/8 inch less adding that the glass is pretty thin already.   God bless him!    You want your stereo, your tv, your computer connected, wired, or on the cloud, he's the man but not so much with carpentry.   Just get the same size dear and I will get out the glass grinder to make it fit.    Men and women really do see things differently and maybe I really am just not ready to be home with him all day, every day.


And a finished finish.  This was fun to do.    When at Salty Yarns in January, I saw the "Postcard" series from Beth at Summer House Stitch Workes and thought her finishing idea was the bomb.   I hopped on to her website for more info and sure enough she has a YouTube video to demo how to do the finish.   Aren't stitchers just the sharingest of the people?   I had fun doing this mixed media finish digging through my stash of bits and bobs that we crafters keep for that 'just in case I need it' moment.  I made a color copy of my stitched piece and cut it to size to work with until I knew everything would work.



New camera zooming on in the bird bath even shows the  glue gun 'hairs'.    Yes, a new camera.     Mine has been givens me fits and starts the last month.   It finally evolved to taking a photo and then it would shut off.    Mr. W. bought me a new battery and a new charger.      (again, his speciality, anything to do with  electronics).   Neither helped.   He made an appointment at Best Buy only to find out it was $130.00 to send it to Canon and that was only to be told what is wrong and IF is could be fixed which would cost additional.   Home he came with the updated version of the same camera.   
Don't you just hate that  this is  such
a throw away society?   It is easier and sometimes the only option to replace an item rather than fix it.    I have a clock in my bathroom that was on the wall in the bathroom of my childhood home.   This little plastic clock has to be 45 to 50 years old.   And I can't even remember when the batteries were last changed and it is still ticking.  What will millennials do if they ever need to repair something?  


 But enough of my carrying on.  I am leaving you with this sweet finish that I am proud of.
Happy Valentine's Day and Happy Stitching all.   Thanks for stopping by.



Wednesday, February 8, 2017

Two Weeks to go.....

Just two weeks and the Corsica River SAL Challenge will start.   Hop on over to the FB page at  https://www.facebook.com/groups/131778023996184/  to get on board.  Go to the "files" tab to check out the premiss, the pattern, the stitching schedule and  see who's onboard already!

See my earlier post from this past fall about the SAL.   I have updated the rules to include the Facebook Option - Option, not necessary.   I just need to know your preference.


Here are the names of those who have signed up via the Facebook Group -

Pat L., Elmer, NJ
Stacy S., Newark, DE
Evalina, British Columbia, This and That blog (EvalinaMarie@blogspot.com)
Laura K., VA
Ann S.,  DE
Barbara S., New Zealand
Lynn M., Lancaster, PA - not sure if Lynn is along for the ride or is watching the ride
Christine K.
Dianne M.
Dorothy H.
Jo B., New Guinea
Kris A.
Kristina H.
Melissa B., Atlanta, GA
Sandra B.
Sarah M., Seattle, WA
Sharon F., Buffalo, NY 
Sue W. Buffalo, NY


 Ack!   I can't believe I am taking this on....the SAL AND the CHALLENGE of this piece!

Saturday, February 4, 2017

Happy Weekend Everyone

I know I sure am glad for the weekend and lingering over the second cup of coffee in my pj's rather than racing out the door in the early morning cold.

I do have a finished to share and a hot mess of tidbits I need to complete the finish.  This was such a  sweet project and what I needed when time is limited.   So nice to have quick finish for that quick gratification.
The Drawn Thread - Love Birds
I have a neat idea on how to finish this and jumped right online to Amazon and ordered what I needed.   
I sorted through all the bits and pieces of paraphernalia that a crafter saves and started pulling items I need for this mixed media finish.  I feel sure by next weekend I  will have a finish to share.


I managed a teeny tiny bit of stitching on my take along piece.  Just need to remind myself, slow and steady wins the race.   I am close to halfway and feeling good about my progress.



A couple of posts back I mentioned I was planning on doing ten stitches a day on a project.   Well that method doesn't work for me.  For me it is more work to count and stop at 10.   I have had success in the past with 'loading' three needle's worth of floss and working until they are empty.   For me that is a win-win.   I can make progress without dedicating a lot of time and while not taking time from other projects.   Wandering down that merry trail of a stitching method, I am making progress on my Thursday night girls SAL.  Several of us in the group have gravitated to like projects in the past and completed them as SAL between us.   We did enough Santa's so it was time for something different.  We did know we wanted to do a stand up finish.

We decided on a patriotic stitch.   We finally found a pattern we all like, Alma Lynn Designs from 1992!  The pattern is a duplicate stitch for a sweater but it is just as easily stitched on 18 count.   For me, Sam's hat is coming along.   I am not sure if the others have started.    I'd love to have this done by 4th of July....maybe not 2017.

Thanks for stopping by.   Happy week and happy stitching everyone!

Sunday, January 29, 2017

Sunrise and Sunset

It is that time of year again for me in the world of work.  I am leaving for work in the dark and pulling back into my driveway long after dark.   Just a couple or three heavy more work weeks and then I will be coasting through the rest of the winter with just the normal hectic workload.   On those chilly dark mornings I let my mind fantasize.  I cross a high suspension bridge each day on my commute and as I descend from the top, I see laid out before me a vast sea of blue-black velvet which is heaped in mounds and folds across which is a spilling of jewels......diamonds, rubies, topaz, emeralds.....I bring myself back to reality and the realization that the diamonds,  rubies and emeralds before me are the street lights, red and green traffic lights of the busy outskirts of the city waking up.   Back to reality my mind wanders into the houses and homes where children are getting more snuggles from moms, fathers are coming or to and from work, teenagers are taking their time getting up and getting ready, firemen man the station waiting a call, school bus drivers are warming their buses for their routes, a cat is sleeping on a child's bed and dog is begging at the door to go for a walk and all those everyday, wonderful, normal things just going on as I take on another day.     You see, for me, it is all about a positive attitude and I choose to see the good.  With this I am content and I am appreciative for what I have and do not worry about what I do not.  Enough gushing and my Pollyanna views of the world.  

Because of work, not much stitching was accomplished this past week.   Not even at lunch at work as lunch has been as my desk.....and so much for doing 25 stitches a day on this piece.....counting does not seem to work for me.  For me that makes it work, besides it is too cumbersome to stop mid-bird or letter.   I just keep stitching.  
This is proving to be a sweet, fast little stitch considering the stolen few minutes I have had this week to stitch.  I am hoping for more progress on this later today.

Yesterday I did truly take a day to do nothing but sooth my inner creativity with a day of finishing. Mr. W. has been in Atlanta, GA most of the week for the Winter Meeting of Drum Corp.....(planning out the summer season) which makes it easier to do nothing of a household nature.  My daughter came down for the day and brought her serger - a machine I don't want to try for fear I need one.   She sewed a jacket, then cut out a dress and started to stitch that up while I made Miss Mary Mack into a pillow.     I should have done some much need computer work but alas after long days all week with contracts and spreadsheets the last thing I felt like was logging on a computer.

I did have a vision and it actually turned out the way I saw it in my minds eye save for I ran out of stuffing.  (Diane! I need a new BIG bag)    For the back I created a bit of whimsy by making it have the look of a shirt placket.  I had four buttons to complete the back but the forth had no hole in the shank so  I fashioned a tiny bow of 1/8-inch satin ribbon and added three petite silver beads to the center.


A true prim and proper dress for Miss Mary Mack.  
Wishing you all a great week filled with many stitches and good days. Until next time, thanks for stopping by.  

Sunday, January 22, 2017

Progress and New Adventures in Cyberland

I had a great day with friends yesterday.   One friend generously hosted a stitching weekend.   Those that traveled far stayed overnight and others dropped in for as long as possible.    Great friends, good chatter, fabulous food and stitching.   Wahoo!   (Thank you Stacy for a great day!)

Here is what I have to show for it... This is where I was after last weekend........and happy with the great progress below.   I am almost to the halfway point.    I may put this aside when I get to the point. Yesterday my friend, Francine, translated the french name of this pattern.   Yes, I could have went onto google translator but it was so much cooler to have her say it in french.

"A Stitchers (embroiderer's) Dream".   This is proving to be a great take along piece to stitch on.   Maybe I won't put it aside. 

Below, progress on Drawn Thread's Love Letters.    This has been on my wish list for some time and it was gifted to me by the best PenPal in the world!  (Hi Shirley!  I'll write soon, I promise.)  I think I will pledge to stitch 25 stitches a day on this piece  Those stitches will add up.

No more progress to share on Rosewood Manor's Cornwall Cottage.   hmmm, maybe I should dedicate Sundays to stitching on it.   That deserves some thought.

And....buds on my orchids after two years.    Yeah!   Three buds on this orchid and two on another.   It is a fine balance of returning them to their favorite window and neglect!  I will be sure to share photos of the blooms.    Glad I didn't give up on these babies.   Good things come to those who wait.


Next up I need to update my other blog since I missed the last monthly DVHSG Meeting (Thank you Caryl and Lynn for notes and photos); I need to create a new blog for my EGA guild (down the rabbit hole further for a couple of hours); and finally, I need to attack the creation of a new Facebook page to launch the Corsica River SAL, starting 2/22/17.  (Ack! Could be the cyber point of no return!) It is just fear of the unknown for this one.  And I am sure it is an easy thing to do but unlike the millennials that have no fear of anything internet related, I still have the mentally that once it is out there is it out there so no "whoopsie daisies" allowed!  Not the Corsica River is in any way risqué!   LOL   An hour of computer work, an hour of stitching, rinse and report.   Sounds like a good afternoon to me.

Have a great day all.   Happy stitching, happy week.

Facebook page has been created!     Title - Corsica River Stitch A Long

I also have a link to a great tutorial for the Assisi Stitch which is part of rows 2, 4, 7, 8 and 9.





Monday, January 16, 2017

Keeping up with my goals....

I am keeping my promise to put more time into completing that white elephant of a project of the wallpaper removing I started last year.  I made great progress spending a Sunday afternoon attacking the mess.
and making a mess with all the bits and pieces.    An hour here and there and I will continue the progress so I can reach my goal by summer.  Good thing this is the upstairs hallway that no one but me sees!  





















Today, I am just back from Camp Wannastitch in Ocean City Maryland.   In addition to stitching you know that means a trip to Salty Yarns for shopping and seeing old friends.

What a fabulous weekend.   Camp Wannasttich is part of the MAR (Mid Atlantic Region) of EGA (Embroiders Guild of America).   How can one be so tired from sitting and stitching for a weekend?   And how can one stitch all weekend and come home and want to stitch more?   It's a mystery I guess.  I got to see old friends and met some new.   We shared a table with four fabulous ladies from Williamsburg and now have great invitations to visit them in Williamsburg.

I was able to make great progress on a couple of my challenge pieces.
Before -  



I ran out of the Anchor floss I was using.   Fear not, it has been ordered


Rosewood Manor's Cornwall Cottage - before


and after -
I managed to almost complete page 3 of 12!
I am happy I starting working on both of these projects.   Both were put aside because I thought them too large and too tedious.   What was I thinking when I packed these away under the guise both were too difficult?....both are moving along nicely....for the moment.

And of course, staying true to my lack of restraint, I started this little cutie from Lizzie Kate.

Hopefully I can be done by Easter.  I have plans  for this quick  little  stitch.
Happy week and happy stitching all!