Monday, January 21, 2008

Part One is Finished

I really enjoyed stitching this first part. The colors are vibrant and cheery, and I found that I actually used DMC colors I've never used before. I guess that means the designs I usually stitch aren't as colorful. I find that quite interesting.

Seeing this piece done, I can't wait to see the next part. I have been trying to figure out what would be next and how it ties into the title "Back on the Road Again". Is it seasonal? This almost looks like a winter into spring panel, but the title confuses me. Since the next part comes out on Wednesday, it won't be a long wait - but still a wait. I feel like a kid waiting for Christmas on this piece. Maybe it's because this appeals to the child side in me. :)

Speaking of appealing to the child in me, I adore Margaret Sherry's designs. Being here in the US, though, they are expensive to purchase. Imagine my delight when I won this lovely piece from Elaine at the 1-2-3 Stitch Bulletin Board!! Thank you, Elaine!

I've promised myself that I will not start this kit until I get my 2 pieces finished. Now it's time to pull the needle roll back out and put some stitches in on that as well as on Wolf Portrait. This kit is my reward for finishing 4 pieces off my list.

My WIP/UFO list has gotten so out of hand. I'm really ashamed that it got as long as it did. Model stitching really cut into my personal stitching, and many of the projects were from being set aside to do a model, and then not picked up right away. Some were started as gifts - some for my mother who died before they were finished. They were put aside because I had two under the age of 3 and no real time to sit and stitch. I had always assumed I'd be able to get back to them as soon as they were older. I had no clue my mother would pass away at the age of 56.

Many projects were put in the closet, moved around the house, and forgotten about. When I started sorting things and putting my stitching stuff in one place, I was stunned to find so many things started and even more - how many were forgotten. A stitching friend of mine said to just purge the things and start over, but it seemed like not only a waste, but an easy way out. I'll admit, there are pieces that I don't like as much as I did when I started them, but I've decided to finish them anyway. If I still don't care for them, I can always pass them on to someone who would like the piece or donate them to a charity of some sort. I know it's strange, but I have this huge need to finish those that I started.

Sunday, January 20, 2008

Celtic Spring Update

Finally, I've been able to post a pic of Celtic Spring. Here she is with another 10 hours of stitching on her, bringing my total up to 42.75 hours.

I didn't want to put her aside, but I have the Mystery SAL to work on, and then there's the needle roll and Wolf Portrait to finish this month. So far, I've been doing pretty well on my stitching goals for the month. I'm hoping to put a check next to each one :)

I should have part one of the Mystery SAL finished by tomorrow - so look for that posting. It's really bright and cheerful. I look forward to the new posting on Wednesday!

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Mystery Update

Thank you all for such nice comments about the mystery piece! It's such a fun stitch, and I'm finding it hard to put down. I wish I had more time to be able to put into it. The colors are so vibrant and cheery - a total opposite of the weather here. We are getting hit with a winter storm, and even though we have snow now, it's supposed to turn to rain, making it dark and dreary. This piece is just what I need!

Here's my update for today.

This piece has to be put aside now, so I can get my last hour in on Celtic Spring. I hope to have an updated picture of CS tomorrow.

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Mystery SAL Begins!

I love mysteries, and mystery stitch-alongs are one of my weaknesses. When Helga Mandl and Barbara Ana announced that they would be doing a Mystery SAL, I had to join in the fun. The SAL is taking place at the Wonderful XS World yahoo group, and yesterday the first part of the piece was posted. I'm stitching mine on 14 ct. smoketone which I pulled out of my stash.

Celtic Spring has almost 10 hours in - just another day of working on it, and I'll have met this month's goal. If I keep this up, I'll have it finished this year. :)

Sunday, January 13, 2008

I Don't Like Sharing!

At least not when it comes to my PC. DH's laptop died on him, and is in need of a new part, so until the part arrives and can be fixed (I'm hoping it can be!!), I have to share. sigh.... The worst part was DH was home for part of the week sick, so he was online quite a bit during that time. Plus, with him home sick, I didn't get much time to stitch.

I did do a little sorting of things, and pulled out a needle roll that I had started a while ago. I had made a mistake on it somewhere, and try as I might, I couldn't find the mistake and back it would go into the WIP box for another time to examine it. This time, I decided that I would continue to stitch it if I found the mistake or not. I looked and looked, and try as I might, I couldn't find it. So I started stitching - and found it! Things were ripped back and fixed, and I now have more than two rows done on it.

Here is "Olde English Needle Roll" by Sweetheart Tree, after finding the boo-boo and adding a couple more rows.

And here it is as it stands today. I'm now ready to start row 12 - the middle row. Another thing I can soon cross off my list of long time WIPs/UFOs. The color on this scan is more accurate than the one above.

It really is a pretty piece, and I forgot how much I love stitching band samplers. I need to get my Just Nan's out and start working on them again.

With working on the needle roll, I didn't get much done on "Wolf Portrait". The one wolf is really starting to show, even with the little bit that I did.

New Contest

Tomorrow starts a Contest on the Lavender & Lace Bulletin Board. I have committed to stitching 30 hours on "Celtic Spring" over the contest period. I 'm looking forward to about doubling the amount of time I have on her now. Here she is at 32 and 3/4 hours.

I still haven't decided if I want to just stitch the girl of if I want the boarder around her. The boarder is beautiful, but I don't like how the word "Spring" is. I would have to rechart it to make it so it fits and I don't know if I really want to do that. I'll see when I come to that bridge.

Well, now it's off to make dinner and hopefully get a few stitches in tonight.

Monday, January 07, 2008

A Great Weekend to Finish Things

It was a good weekend. One that I actually pulled out the sewing machine and did finished a couple of things. Usually, I finish stitching, and then the item goes into a box to be a someday project - when the sewing machine comes out or I've found a couple of nice frames on sale.

First I have a stitching finish for Friday. I finally finished stitching "From the Heart" needle roll. It only took me 8 years from start to finish :) (Hey - I had a lot of good excuses!)

I was so ambitious, that I even finished it into a roll.

While the sewing machine was out, I decided to finish my House-Mouse piece. "A Mother's Work" is now up and hanging in my living room:

(Please excuse my photo - the piece is not really hanging crooked, it's the photographer LOL).

New Focus Piece

I had to pull a new piece out of my WIP box to make as my focus piece. Already two off the list. If I keep going like this, I will be able to knock the list to the lowest it's been in years. I feel like I'm getting more in control with each piece that I finish.

My new focus piece is called "Wolf Portrait" by Dimensions and is being stitched on 14 ct. black Davosa. When I purchased it, I didn't realize there was a sheen to the black as well as the obvious design - looking a bit like huck weave. I started the design on it, to find I didn't care for the Davosa, but instead of frogging/tossing, I've decided to finish it and see if it's really as bad as I had thought. This is where it stands as of this morning:

All my WIP's and UFO's seem to have a reason why they have sat in the box so long. From being set aside because of receiving a model, to really hating stitching a piece, to a change in recipients - like no one wanting it after it's been started. Every one has a little story of why it has taken so long to be finished. I wonder how many others have a box of stories?

Thursday, January 03, 2008

Coming Close to the End...

I can't believe that I'm almost through my 50 project commitment. Only 3 more to go, and I'm finished. So, how will I reward myself? By jumping on the Abstinence Wagon for a year. For my exception, I claimed this year's JCS Ornament issue. I love those issues - not because of the designs, but because of the little write-ups about the designers. I just love the stories and the recipes. The ornaments are just a nice little addition to the magazine :)

I'm going through things and getting all my junk organized. Lo and behold, guess what I come across? Another WIP! Well, that brings the total back up to 41. Here I was all excited about getting down to 40 - the lowest it's been in years. LOL The piece is really nice, and I'm so happy I found it (yes, I had forgotten about it!) It's called "Dinner Call" by Dawna Barton. It's being stitched on 22 ct. white using one thread.

DS started "Gettysburg" and he's doing a really nice job. I'm still stunned that he'd want to do it himself instead of handing it off to me. No complaints here, though! :)

Wednesday, January 02, 2008

First Finish of 2008

Yes! Here it is... The first finish off my WIP list for this year.

Now, just to decide what to do with it. On to the next WIP. You know, with a list this long, it's almost like going to the LNS and choosing a project - but without all the hassle of starting it. :)

Tuesday, January 01, 2008

A New Year!!

I hope that your holiday season was full of the love of family and friends and you stuffed yourself silly with great food. :)

You will notice that things here haven't been updated in a while. This blog goes along with the seasons - now the garden and things are on down time, and not much is new and exciting on the home front, so updates here are slow. As spring comes, there will be more activity and you'll hear my chattering about planting, canning, and everything imaginable. Now, with downtime, I spend a lot of time enjoying the slow season, and I work on my cross stitch. Cross stitching really has no place on a homestead blog. I really don't do anything with it except for decorating and gifts. I have another blog for just my crafting life, and if you'd like to see it, you can visit at:

Tweezle's Explorations

I've had the Explorations blog for years and it has always centered around my stitching and other needlecrafts. My homesteading adventures didn't fit there, so I found a need for this blog. I will be flopping back and forth between these two blogs, keeping my 2 interests pretty much separated. Please stop by and see what I've been up to. I've put my link on the sidebar so that you can find it, if you ever need to.

Have a lovely New Year's Day!!
It's 2008!

So begins another year. A new year brings a new start, and a new list of achievements, hopes and dreams. Each year, we all make a list of what things we'd like to do and check things off as we go along. Then at the end of the year, we don't look at the things we didn't do, but all the things we did. This method really appeals to the kids, and they make more goals and try harder to achieve them.

With new lists, comes new projects and commitments. So, I'm posting my first focus piece of the year. This piece was started years ago, and after it was started, the person that it was to be stitched for, decided they didn't want it. It went in the WIP box because I was just too frustrated to finish it. It came back out a couple of days ago, and I decided to make this my first finish of the year. This piece is designed by Lorri Birmingham and is from the LA book Bunnies Galore. Unfortunately, there is no title listed for it.

Coming Clean...

It is that time of year where I look at things to make changes. One of my biggest areas of excessiveness is my stash. The next is my WIP list. There - I said it. No taking it back now :) My WIP list is long - way too long (but is shorter than last year! LOL)

2008 WIPS

Cross - Stitch
Art Ventures – Old Sentinel - 15%
Bent Creek - Snappers (12 w/border) - 2 completed
Breast Cancer fund – From the Heart Needle Roll – 80%
Carriage House Samplings - The Houses of Hawk Run Hollow - 5%
Cross Stitch & Country Crafts – North Woods Stocking - 20%
Crossed Wing Collection – Hummingbird Garden – 35%
Curtis Boehringer – Needlewoman’s Murder Mystery
Diane Arthurs – Happy Everything – 60%
DMC – The White Bindweed Fairy - 15%
Dimensions - A Bird For All Seasons - 5%
Dimensions – Wolf Portrait – 10%
Drawn Thread – Miniature Reversible Sampler
Drawn Thread - Winter Spot - 5%
French Calendar free weekly - 23 of 52 finished
Hearts Delight – Noah’s Ark Kit - 50%
Just Cross Stitch 2001 Ornament Issue – Cinnamon Bear 70%
Just Nan – First Stitches - 10%
Just Nan – Last Stitches - 10%
Kustom Krafts – 4 Horses of Apocalypse - 5%
Kustom Krafts – Fire & Ice - 15%
Kustom Krafts – Sofa Cat – 5%
Lanarte – Romantic Picnic - 15%
Lavender & Lace – Celtic Spring - 35%
Leisure Arts – Bunnies Galore - 65%
Leisure Arts – Noah’s Ark Baby Afghan 50%
Magazine pull out – Hearts & Flowers - 5%
Marquoir Mystery Sampler – freebie SAL – 3 of 9 finished
Marty Bell - Hideaway Cottage - 5%
Pamela Kellogg – Cupid’s Garden Mystery SAL - 15%
Pat Rogers – Hearts & Lace Sampler – 70%
Paula Vaughan – May - 5%
Pegasus – Pekingese – Dogs V. 4
The Silver Lining – Aymar’s Amber Rose – 30%
SMO – Blooms - 15%
Sue Lentz – Grandmother’s Garden - 15%
Sue Lentz – Soft Terra Cotta Pillow - 15%
Sweetheart Tree – Jan. Needle Roll (needs some frogging) - 5%
Sweetheart Tree – Teenie Tweenies – Spring Has Sprung - 20%
Teresa Wentzler – Stretch - 15%
Teresa Wentzler – Under the Evergreen - 15%
Vermillion Stitchery - The Holy Family - 15%

EZ Thick Woodmen's Socks - 50%
Red, White & Blue Socks 50%
Diamonds Are A Girl's Best Friend Socks 50%
Drop Stitch Shawl 75%

Granny Square Afghan (using scraps)

Yo-Yo Quilt
Scrap Quilt
(these will be in progress a long time because I'm using just scraps from other projects or pieces of clothing)

As you see, I could work all year with never having to purchase another piece of stash - except for an occasional skein of floss or pack of beads I may have missed. If I did finish everything on my XS list, I'd be able to easily start some new pieces from my kitted stash. Shameful, isn't it?

Well, this year I'm going to put my nose to the grindstone and not buy any new stash, and limit my starts to only things I am making for others for gifts. I'm climbing onto the abstinence wagon again.