Saturday, February 28, 2015

I've actually accomplished something!

Much to the chagrin of others, I actually love snow!   Love, love, love it.   So pretty.  The world is pure and clean and ever so quiet.   I love the rosy cheeks you get when you take a walk (or shovel snow) in the cold.  But enough....

I did tossed aside Oscar Wao's Brief Wonderous Life.   Just couldn't get into it.     Instead picked up Orphan Train.  A quick and enjoyable read.  What hardship and horrors these children who were orphans in the 1930's faced.  I never knew they loaded them on trains and took them out west only to be adopted by farmers looking for ranch hands or families looking for a mother's helper.

I signed up on Goodreads to read 12 books this year and I am already at 7 and it is not yet March.  Guess I'd better up that challenge next year. Hmmmmm, maybe that is where my time has been going.

 Buddy thought he wanted to go out.
 He didn't make it very far.

Seems like I have had a slow stitching start for 2015 but I finally can show some progress.

This is Lizzie Kate's Mystery Sampler - Things Unseen.   No spoilers here since I have seen others post the COMPLETED sampler.   Yeah for me, I finished Part I.   I didn't looked at Parts II and III when I received them as I wanted to hold the 'mystery' as long as possible.  I ran amok a bit and mixed symbols and colors in a couple places but I am not frogging so I guess it puts my stamp on it.  No worries that I saw Sally posted her completed sampler on Salty Yarns blog......I have the memory of a goldfish, or about 3 seconds, so as quickly I as saw it and enjoyed it, I forgot it.  Planning to start Part II this week.

Next up,  Prairie Schooler 1990 Santa.   This has been my take along project.  I used the suggested fabric and colors.  When I pulled the threads I kind of thought there were better Christmas reds and greens but the designer knows best and it works for the PS Santas.   I used the recommended fabric which took some getting used to.

This is my first PS Santa and I have about 4 or 5 more waiting in the wings.  I am not sure how I will be finishing it.

Here is the La-D-Da name tag I stitched in the fall and I finished it!   I have sewn the webbing on twice and it is still not 100% straight but it is going to stay as it.  

I think the pocket will be perfect for stowing my room key or cell phone when on a retreat.

I dug through my stash to look for a charm to add.   I can't decide on one of the bees or the bird.  I just love finding a trinket in my stash that I can use....something I saved just waiting for that perfect piece to add it to.  Kind of helps justify what could be classified as 'craft hoarding'!

That about wraps it up for now.  More snow in today's forecast!  Happy stitching all!

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Of Course I Started

my guild stitch-a-long piece.   I am the Queen of no willpower!   I "hope" when done the assigned rows each month and I put time in on my other WIP's.

I had a snow day after all.   After shoveling  - only to then get the second call that turned our two-hour-late-start to off-all-day, What else was there to do but sit in my sweats to stitch and binge watched part of season two of "Orange is the New Black".  

First row worked up quick.   Second row is in the process.   The satin stitches look better in person.  

The pattern calls for one thread of silk over two.   I am using two strands of cotton and like the coverage I am getting.   The fabric count is 32 and I not sure if it is the recommended linen type and color.   We received the pre-cut linen and pattern in one package from our guild's resident shop owner.

Not too much variation in the WDW Capri Blue.   The Shaker Threads Baby Spinach Green  does seem to have more color changing.  I hope I am not disappointed in my color choices.  (see my Feb. 15 post for a picture of the Girls of the Guild Sampler from Sharon Verbos of the Purple Thread.) 

Look at Buddy's new trick.   This is how he lets me know he wants to come in from the cold.  He paws the window.   He doesn't just pat it; he looks like his sparring with it.  Even if I am not nearby, I sure can hear him announcing himself at the door.  Good thing he doesn't have diamond tipped claws or I would have some very scratched glass.  Heaven help the screens when I put them back up!  Mr. W. thinks once the weather is warm, he won't be 'knocking' to get in.   I don't know.   Buddy has a few bad habits that I can't break him of.

   Getting ready for another record breaking blast of cold weather.   Stay warm and safe all!  Thanks for stopping by!

Sunday, February 15, 2015

Dead BRRR Cold here on the east coast.  I'd have to check but I think we are breaking some records. Not much snow - really none - for me.  My daughter is getting my share.   OMGosh those poor people in New England!  I can't imagine how brutal it is for them.   We experienced 50 to 60 mph winds with snow last night - just 3 or 4inches - but the howling winds!  We are experiencing white out conditions from the blowing winds along.  Yeowie!

So what have I been up to.....hmmm?   Not much really.   Seems I go to work, come home, hit the treadmill and not much longer after having my back side hits the recliner, I fall asleep!   This is driving me crazy because of course I am waking pre-dawn and repeating the process.  It is crazy time at work with covering an open position and working on the company's annual report, stir and mixed with the regular duties.   The only thing I care to stir is a Gin and Tonic!

I haven't worked on Things Unseen Mystery Sampler from Lizzie Kate since before my cruise.  I have seen it completed on the internet and I am liking it!    So far it has been a fun piece.  I plan to concentrate on this in the coming weeks.  Seems I am not as far along as I remember.

I have been reading a lot.   Not thrilled with my current read, "The Brief Wonderous Life of Oscar Wao".   Just not cutting it for me.  So many books and so little time.    I have permission from my Librarian daughter to toss it aside if after the first 100 pages I am not taken to it. I'm on page 85 now.  It's not looking good for me and Oscar.

I finished "The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society" and fell in love with the Channel Islands and its people.   I was not aware of the German Occupation during World War II and was caught up in how this group survived and - in true British form - were able to carry on afterwards.  I even Zillowed homes for sale there.

I have found a new show on TV to watch.  Grantchester on Masterpiece Theater.   It is kind of an Miss Marple meets the Vicar in 1950's England.   Sidney is great and Mrs. McQuire a character...."What the dickens?" is was she says all the time.   I think I need to start using that expression at work.   I wonder how long it would take for the rest of office to start saying it!  

I almost finished 1990 Santa from Prairie Schooler.  I hope this doesn't sit in my pile of finishes to be finished for too long once the last stitches are made.

And I got my guild stitch-a-long at our meeting this weekend.  The schedule allows for a year to finish it.   I think that is doable.   I stopped at the LNS afterwards to pick up some floss.   I think I might just overcast the edges and put this on my scroll frame to get started.    Oh woe is me!  Another WIP!

Here is the linen and I changed up the floss from the pattern.   Turquoise and brown is my favorite color combination with turquoise as my favorite of ALL colors.  After finding the best T & B combo I realized I would either be stitching brown flowers or using the brown for the stems and leaves so I swapped out the WDW Acorn Brown for ST Baby Spinach.   I know if I do little else than listen to this old house creak in the high winds today it will at a minimum put in the first stitches in this project today.   What is it will a new project?   Just can't wait to tear in regardless of what is left waiting for completion.

Stay warm all, stay safe an the roads, and keep on stitching.


Monday, February 2, 2015

Va-Ca Enjoyed

Looks like someone didn't want me to go away.   Funny how I found  my formal wear top under the table when I returned home.   I was fit to be tied when I couldn't find it on the cruise because I KNEW it was laid out on the dining room table with all the other outfits as I was prepping last week. 

Ahhhhh!  We had lots of fun and sun and more fun.   Had a fabulous time with my two daughters on our cruise.   They enjoyed the experience and there were talks of another cruise in the future to Alaska! which just happens to be on my bucket list.

How many pairs of shoes do three women need for a week?   Apparently 22 pairs!

Now for a bit of photos, some with captions and others not.  These photos are totally out of time sequence order!  I used two cameras and as I sit here this morning I am still feeling the gentle roll of the ship! so I am not up to dropping and dragging a lot.
It was a rough life.   Watching the sunset and soaking in the hot tub.   This was
after a day of ocean kayaking and I swear is why we weren't suffering from soreness the next day. 

Sunsets on the water are always beautiful!

Check out this walkway.    See below.   This section of the ship was called the sky walk and it extending OUT and OVER the ocean!  There are two levels.  Crazy!  I will have to see if I have more photos looking down as I walked on this.

Now this bizarre thing!  This is on the top deck of the Quantom of the Sea from Royal Carribean.   We were parked at the same dock while in St. Marteen.    People get in the silver ball and then the crane takes it up and over the water.   It is 18 decks about the water BEFORE the arm extends!!  Not going to catch me in that thing!

I always find a nice little out of the way spot aboard ship where the crowds are not.   This is where were would eat breakfast and lunch each day.    Can't deny the view.   This is leaving St. Marteen.

More from St. Marteen.
Side by side - Regal Princess and Quantom of the Sea

Other ships in port that day.

Leaving St. Thomas

Blackbeard's Castle and the 99 steps tour.

I never saw a hand crank sewing machine before.

Imagine this is your view every morning!

More venues from the 99 steps tour.  (actually it was 99 stairs!)

Swimming at Magen's Bay - chosen by National Geographic as one of the top 10 beaches in the world.

Swimming with beverages because they can!

Last day - sunrise in Fort Lauderdale.  Time to get breakfast, disembark and head to the airport.

This is arriving at  St. Thomas.
I love pulling into port and made my girls get up at sunrise to enjoy the arrival.

On deck after our first formal night.

Giant fountain show on the top deck.

One of the pools before the fountain show.

Save for a bit of hassle at the airport when we returned - the ENTIRE planes luggage took close to two hours to show up on the carousel.    Most people were OK but it was infringing on Super Bowl and Super Bowl Commercial time!

Oh and there was the little incident of the ship having to turn around and look for someone who fell overboard!   No one did, but several guests reporting what seemed to be credible enough account to turn the ship around and perform a search and notify the Coast Guard.  That caused a lot of excitement as well as grumbling......I mean really, I thought of it as a bit of adventure as we all were on the deck with our eyes searching the water for an orange life jacket.

I managed to read two books while relaxing on deck during the sea days and I stitched a bit.......and of course I started something new.....I mean you always do on vacation right?    Really, you need something small to take along and not something massive.   I have always wanted to do the Santa series from Prairie Schooler so I pulled everything from stash and got started.  This patterns stitched on the suggested linen (18 counts) required no cheaters - another good point for travel.

Back to the grind today.   Vacation is great and it does feel good to come home but going back to work will only feel great for about half the day!

Have a great week all and stay safe with all the ice and snow!  I will keep looking at all my photos to remind we why I work.....for vacation time!