Monday, November 29, 2004

Been Awhile!

First off - happy belated Thanksgiving to everyone. I hope you had a lovely time with family and friends, and didn't pig out on too much delicious food. We went to my brother's house, and had a feast. If you took a little of everything (not including the desserts), you would need more than one plate! There was so much food - and everything was delicious!

I can't believe it's been almost 2 weeks since my last update. It seems like I've been running non-stop since my last post. Finally, this weekend has brought some peace and quiet, and I've been enjoying staying home. Yesterday I did nothing, except veg out. It was lovely! Last night after everyone went to bed, I pulled out my stitching and stitched away until 1am. Then the guys got up at 4 needing breakfast, coffee, and sent off for their day out in the woods for the first day of deer season. So after they left, I sat down with a cup of coffee and stitched some more. I have a small finish to report - started it last night and finished and framed it this morning. It's Lizzie Kate's December Flip-it

It's done on a piece of unknown 28ct. evenweave with the recommended GAST and DMC threads. I changed the heart charm to a yellow wooden star. I thought it would bring a bit more color to the piece, and tie in the yellow hanger on the ornament. The scan makes the star so much darker, but its almost the same color as the hanger.

The Flip-its go above my sink. I bought a frame (with glass to keep the water splashes off the needlework) and all I do is change the flip-it each month. I didn't do any lacing or anything fancy like that. I just cut the piece to fit in the frame, and up it goes. Then all I do is just change the piece every month. LK's are cute, but I won't go to the expense or time to do a good job framing them. They just go in a cheap Walmart or Dollar Store frame.

Dragon Dream's "Late Knight Snacking" is all finished except for the lettering. I put it aside to work on my breadcloth that has to be mailed out on the 6th. Late Knight is just so adorable! I need to get to AC Moore's and find the perfect frame/mat for it. As for the breadcloth, I found the cutest pattern on the net for it at Cross Stitch Treasures. The pattern is called Gingerbread Deer, which I thought was different. You always see gingerbread houses and men, but not deer :-) I'm about half way done. I don't care for holding the piece in my hand, though, so I don't work on it a lot at one time.

I'm waiting on a model to come. Yup - I'm back to model stitching again. I like the designer and her designs are fun with attitude. I can't wait to tell more, but you know how that confidentiality stuff works - so, I can't tell much now - but soon!!

On to more personal homelife stuff.... I had two really neat things go on here these past 2 weeks - first DS had his braces removed. He's a handsome boy with a beautiful smile now. It's funny, because he has to learn to whistle all over again. He was wonderful at doing bird calls, then he got his braces, and couldn't. He was just at the point of being good at doing them again, when the braces came off. Now he's has to learn again! LOL

Now for the other news. This is bittersweet, really. DH's great aunt died a couple of months ago. She didn't have any children, so all the things were to be left to DH's mom. She called DH and his brothers, and said she wanted them at his great aunt's house to pick out things they wanted. They had to tag what they wanted, and the rest was to go to auction. The following week, DH picked up the stuff he picked out. I didn't go, as I felt it wasn't my place. It's uncomfortable enough dispersing a family member's things, but to go into a complete stranger's home and taking would be totally wrong. I never met the woman before. Sadly I didn't get to find anything out about her until after she died. Anyhow, when DH came home, he had the most wonderful gift for me that he tagged.

As many of you know, I LOVE Paula Vaughan's work - makes me think of my childhood and my grandmother. As I get older, I want to add more of the older things to my home. I have a beautiful roundtop trunk and a have wanted to add a handmade quilt and a treadle sewing machine to my "collection" for quite a long time now. Well, when DH came home, he had a beautiful 1889 Singer Treadle sewing machine that was his aunt's! Not only was it in great shape, but it came with a stool, a wooden cover to protect the machine, a puzzle box full of attatchments, and even the owner's manuals for the machine and the attatchments!! The best part is, is the machine works!! I've cleaned it up, and after talking to a furniture restorer, I am now using Lemon Oil since the wood is so dry. It is looking better and better as I work on it. I still can't believe that I got so lucky!!!

On the topic of Paula Vaughan, I'm so close to completing my collection of her leaflets! I have 3 to get that are still in print, and "PV in Miniature". That one may never make it in my collection. It always goes out of my reach on auction. I asked DH for the 3 in print leaflets, so I'm keeping my fingers crossed he'll get them for me for Christmas. He's usually pretty good at getting things that I love and want :-)

Tuesday, November 16, 2004


I've been stitching almost every spare moment I can get. And when I'm not stitching, I've been scouring the BB's. I'm a BB junkie at times and I hit them when I need someone to "talk to" about stitching, because it doesn't happen here. DH's eyes glaze over and he nods his head and Uh-huh's once in a while, but I know he's not listening. No complaints here tho. I dated a stitcher, and it seemed to be a competition for stash and who stitched faster and better. I didn't like the competition that he seemed to thrive on. He wanted to be better, faster and neater than I was. I stitch to relax - not to compete. Nuf said.

I ordered a Dragon Dreams pattern called "No Late Night Snacking". No, I haven't fallen off the wagon - as it's a purchase for a Christmas present for my brother (according to the "Wagon" rules LOL). My brother likes dragons which is one of the reasons I bought it. The other is Dad lives with him and is a diabetic who won't stay out of the fridge at night. So it's more of a joke than anything :-) It arrived, and I started on it right away. Here's my progress as of this morning:

Sorry about the scan. I was too lazy to take it off the q-snaps. It's about half done, now. The next time you see it, it will be finished.

I am in a breadcloth exchange on The Worldwide Round Robins BB, but sadly, only 3 of us signed up. I have narrowed my choices down, but still need to pick that right one.

The Sweetheart Tree BB is discussing a SAL for 2005. I'm looking forward to that one. You pick 12 designs you want to do, post them, and then stitch one a month along with everyone else. I'm going to need all the motivation I can get. I have a ton of them in my stash, but have only stitched a couple. I'm hoping more people will join in. There's only 2 of us right now.

Stitching Bloggers QOTW:

Do you find that having another distraction (music, movies, people to talk to) while stitching helps you make progress or make mistakes?

I don't have problems stitching to music, tv or movies, and I actually prefer it, but when I'm talking to someone, forget it. I lose count and easily get distracted making me frog more than I get done.

Wednesday, November 10, 2004

Question of the Week:

"What project has been a WIP/UFO the longest? Or what project took you the longest to complete?"

Oh goodness - I really have to admit to that, eh? It's the first stocking from the CS&CC series:

It's call "North Woods Stocking". I started it back in 1985 - 19 years ago!! I'm stitching it on 25 bone Lugana using DMC floss. Design also came be found from the book called 'Heirloom Christmas Stockings in Cross-Stitch'.
Another STRiP Finish!!

Oh yeah! Another off the list is finished. Yessiree - I'm doing well :-) That makes 16 finishes from my Strip list. And here is my last pride and joy:

It's Winter Wonderland from Mill Hill and as from the Buttoned and Beaded Kit Holiday II Series. It was stitched on perforated paper, and there's where I had my problem. I'm not fond of working on that stuff. I do love the piece done though. I think this has to be my favorite MH kit so far. The snow sparkles so much - has an ice quality to it. Actually, it makes me think of how snow sparkles in moonlight.

I'm now working on Marquoir Story I'm working on part 2 now. Here's part 1:

I changed the colors since I used a 28 ct. creamish color evenweave fabric that is just a little lighter than DMC 746. The floss colors I chose were 520, 814 and I stayed with the original 3852. I think it's about time I picked it back up again :-)

Saturday, November 06, 2004

Pictures - as promised

As promised, I'm posting pictures today. I got the JN "Love & Roses" in it's final resting place - another totally finished! Well, maybe not. The picture shows gold braid around the top edge of the box, and I haven't decided it I want to add it or not. I might take it with me on my next trip to the fabric store and try some out to see if it's the look I want.

I also put a few more stitches in L&L's "Celtic Spring" taking me up to 18 hours now. I had to do a little frogging though. I was off one stitch and just decided to pull the whole area out and do it again. I love doing these designs. It always amazes me that those blobs of color actually look like fabric from a distance. I certainly wish I had the talent to be able to design like that.

And for my last photo, my owl dishcloth. If you'd like to knit your own, the free pattern can be found at Dishcloth Boutique:

Friday, November 05, 2004

Down for the count

Wouldn't you know it - I hurt my leg somehow and couldn't walk on it for the last couple of days. It also kept me from putting weight on it, so I couldn't sit at the PC either - hence no blog update. Things are getting back to normal now - still really tender to walk on, but better. It's been a nice couple of days - no cooking or cleaning - just stitching time :-) This was good, as I got a couple of finishes - a knitted owl dishcloth, and Just Nan's "Love & Roses". I still need to mount in in the satin box. I'll post a picture soon.

I pulled out L&L's "Celtic Spring" yesterday, and am now working on that. I haven't decided if I want to put the border on it as I don't like how the word Spring was done. It looks like it was a goof that was fudged. Maybe if I rechart it. I'll have to look at the L&L gallery on Taneya's website again. I do love stitching this piece. Updated wip photo soon!!!

Monday, November 01, 2004

eBay Feedback....Skunks

I love eBay - in some aspects, but I think the feedback thing is wrong - especially when unwarrented negative feedback is left. When that happens, there's no way to remove it. How do I know? Recent experience!!! I went to purchase a book off (one of my favorite sites) and saw my feedback looked like it dropped. HUH? Ok, so I click on it, and sure enough I have a negative!!! So, I start look, and find it's from the last auction I won. Now, I'm totally confused, because the seller emailed me a couple days after the auction saying the book I bid on was lost, and he was sorry. OK - no biggie. These things happen - end of story. Or so I thought. A month later, this sweet seller leaves me negative feedback with "OK" as the comment. I've emailed him - with my emails ignored. Thought maybe he accidently left the wrong feedback, as I really shouldn't have gotten any - since the sale didn't go through, and the comment doesn't match the rating. Well, nothing from him. I went looking at his information - as when I bid, he was a new seller. He lost a few people's books, has a few negatives, and seems to love posting negative and neutral feedback for those that purchased from him. With that all being said, there's nothing eBay will do, except for me to leave him a negative and then have him mutually withdrawl his comment.

DH says it's no big deal, but I think it is. It has a reflection on my trading/buying reputation. I have always both bought and sold with the thought that I would treat all the way I would like to be treated. I have always sent the payments and packages out when I said I would - and if something did happen, where I couldn't, the recipient knew - as I emailed RIGHT away. I let the person know when things are sent, and received, and it takes a lot for me to grumble about a bad trade, as I am very slow to grumble and don't find fault with charts that have bends, marks, etc. as long as I can read them. I have had a few people take me for a ride, and not send their trade to me, and stop emailing - so I do know how that feels, but keep my fingers crossed that something happened and they will get it out ASAP. Well, some haven't in more than 4 years, so I guess those ones aren't coming :-) Well, I just hope they enjoy what I sent, because if I traded it, I really must not have needed it.

On to more fun stuff.... For the last few months, DH has found something nesting in our outdoor boiler. It is insulated, and something made a home in the insulation. He figured it was a cat or something of that nature. What a surprise we had, as our guest was none other than a sweet striped skunk. We came home one night and pulled into the driveway to see it run into its nice nest :-) Well, that then explained the times we went out and thought we called our cat, and it ran the other way.... why the cat dish was always knocked over, and why the nasty yellow jacket nest next to the horseradish was dug up and all the larva gone. That last was a blessing, as we garden organically and didn't know how to get rid of them without putting something offensive in our garden. Well these guys did it for us.

The skunks have been around for months and have never sprayed or be offensive in any way toward us. In fact, they are quite tolerant of us. Here's a picture of on that visits our patio to munch on the bird seed the messy birds dump every day:

And here is the same one, after cleaning out the cat dish some, and having a drink:

Now when these were taken, I was no more than just a couple feet away - I was on the top step of our porch landing, and he was only 2 steps down. The flash didn't bother him, nor did I. He just goes about his business every evening, and watches us as much as we watch him.

If you notice, I did say they a bit before. Yes, there's another that is about twice the size of this one, that is almost pure white on the top - including his tail. It looks like someone held him by his nose and tail and dipped him in black paint up to his chest. That one is a little more skiddish of us, but still doesn't bother.

We snicker about how many times we've all been out in our yard after dark - kids playing and running around, and us just enjoying the evening - and never being bothered. Makes one wonder what we pass in the dark every night!! :-)

The kids are back home and playing catch up. They did do their schoolwork while they were away. That really is a nice surprise. Wasn't sure if they would or not. Even with all the work they did, they didn't want to come home. My brother received a call from a neighboring farmer that needed help loading some hay, so my brother took DS and went up to help. The farmer was impressed by DS and told him that he'd like to hire him next summer if he was available. DS is in 7th heaven - as he's been wanting to get a job. He's saving for a car and that will help. Our kid is 13 and already saving for a car. My brother and DH both like rebuilding wrecks, so DS will be able to end up with a very nice car with minimal amount of $$ into it. His goal is to buy a wreck and work with DH and DB and do his own. I'm all for that, as with working on a car that way, he'll appreciate it a lot more, and know how to fix it when something goes wrong.

DD is saving for a trip to NYC. She wants so badly to go to the Big Apple and see life in the city. I've been to Detroit, Washington DC, Baltimore, and Nashville, and found all of them OK - fun to visit, but not for me. I'm much happier "watching corn grow" than being in all that "hustle and bustle" that I found in the city. I wonder if she will like it as much as she thinks she will.