Monday, October 26, 2009

I Caved.......

....Yes, dear friends, I caved!  I caved and banished Ann to the corner.  I'm not proud of it and you can all flog me with wet floss if you wish (no throwing of needles though, please), but I caved.  Here she is when I left her yesterday morning:

I know, I know.  So close to finishing up that next section.  But putting in that lettering (which I normally find kind of mindless), was making my entire body itch, making me jump repeatedly out of my chair and circle the house mumbling to myself, and reaching for anything that was bad for me (like Fritos dipped in chocolate - ymmmmm - kind of sounds like I was PMSing, doesn't it?  And I was doing that at 7a.m. Sunday morning).  I finally knew when I was beat, and put her aside.  That's not to say that she won't be resurrected in a week or so, but for the time being she can sulk in a corner.  DS is still on his early to school in the morning routine, so that may be part of it.  When you only get about 20 stitches in at a pass, it becomes exasperating on such a large piece.

Speaking of which, this morning you would have found me in the kitchen at 4:45 a.m. making pancake batter for the masses at DS' school.  October 23 is Mole Day (and I'm probably not spelling that right).  It has to do with some equation that the AP Chem class has (10 to the 23rd power or something - I never took AP Chem, so I'm clueless and even though he tried to explain it to me, I was still half asleep).  So to celebrate Mole Day, they cook pancakes for the 400 kids in the Chemistry classes.  Last Thursday was the real Mole Day, but due to the teacher being out, it was held today.  And quess who was in charge - yes siree Bob, my son.  But quess who has to get the starter batches of pancake mix ready.  Yes, that would be Moi!  So you see why, at 9:00 at night when I finally land in my stitching chair, only 20 stitches get made!

So, what is a girl to do, but find something else - something that she can see light at the end of the tunnel even if there are only 20 stitches in a night.  It had to be in the stash pile - my goal is to clear up stash - no market orders that I was just itching to get to.  So I picked up this.  It's been in my stash for eons:

Mystery Sampler
35 count Parchment
DMC threads

Anyone know what it is?  Maybe I should make a guessing game out of it.  Maybe there will be a prize if someone guesses what sampler it is.  I'm curious to see if someone can identify it.  And, I have to make an admission, that this may not be the only new start I have.  I'm itching to fill every scroll rod that I have in this house with projects.  I feel like a man that's been in the desert.......I need new projects.......I need inspiration ......I need........perhaps I need some help!  LOL

So, anyway, I'm not proud of myself, but I just had to do something else.  I think that after spending two whole months and two days on Ann, I really made a good attempt, don't you think?  And she hasn't been banished to the stitching graveyard upstairs, just behind my chair.  I hear her whine sometimes, but I tell her this:

Yeah, that's right, "Don't make me get the flying monkeys".  I found this sign at a prim shop I went into recently and had to have it for my craft room.  The Wizard of Oz is just about my favorite movie (well, so is Gone With the Wind) and when my kids were little and had seen it for the first time, those monkey's scared the bejesus out of them.  So whenever they were bad I would tell them, "Don't make me get the flying monkeys".  After a few times of me saying that, they would laugh, but it did get them a couple of times (I know, mean mommy).   Even my husband laughed when he saw the sign in my room, just because it's been one of those sayings he's heard me say numerous times throughout our marriage (he's been on the receiving end of that saying, too!  LOL).

While I was going through my itching process with Ann and trying not to start another project, I did manage to get some knitting done this week:

After about four attempts of trying to remember how to do this pattern it finally clicked (You Tube was a huge help).  Now I've only done this pattern I don't know how many times, but it just didn't click.  Fortunately, while I was waiting for my ride to get new rubber (van getting new tires), I made some good progress.  This will look mucho better after it's blocked.

The same day that I found the flying monkeys sign, I happened across another store down the way that had a lot of furniture in it.  Two things I'm trying to find for my craft room are a bookcase, and a bar stool, but it can't be as high as a bar stool.  Well, the store had them, but in sets of four - they didn't want to sell just one, but the whole set.  I started to leave and the owner said, "Wait, I might have what you're looking for in the back and I can sell you one.  It's nicked on the leg, but maybe it will work".  Well, lo and behold, the most perfect chair was there:

It was exactly what I was looking (except for the color which is easily remedied - I wanted red).  And yes, there is a nick, but once painted it will be great!  I was so happy because it's almost an exact match, but taller, to my sewing chair!  SCORE!!!

I also had the misguided notion that I would possibly get some quilting done this week.  I have felt like a real slacker because I haven't done anything Halloweeny.  Well, I open a box (yes, I'm still unpacking things for my room) and what do I find?  This older Thimbleberries pattern and the fabric is all cut out!!  I was doing a happy dance for about ten minutes.  Then the phone rang, then I was off like a shot somewhere, and nothing was sewn.  Well, there is still Thanksgiving to get through, so maybe there is hope for this quilt.

Well, that's about it for me this week.  The pic above was taken from my side yard.  The colors have been so pretty around here (at least when the sun has been out).  But I think we're just about hitting peak.  Seems like a good time to make that final fall cider and donuts scenic tour this week and see what new goodies I can find.

Thanks for all the wonderful comments you leave.  I love receiving them!  Make a lot of X's.  And have a great week.

Friday, October 16, 2009

If You Can't Dazzle Them With Brilliance, Baffle Them With......

........FRAMING!  Ha!  Okay, I know that I'm not going to baffle anyone with framing, but I didn't know what to put as the title of this.  So bear with me.  I do have more framing this week and that's just about it.  I've been spinning my wheels doing absolutely nothing!   Well, I shouldn't say that - I've been busy, plus DS has been out the door every morning at 6:00 a.m. for AP Chem and Physics study groups (God love that boy for being so diligent), but God help me for being deprived of sleep.  By the time I sit down in the stitching chair, I'm dead tired.  Also, have been having some computer problems that sparked a call to the Geek Squad.  Mucho $$ later, it works, but it's still a little quirky.  I am so far behind on blog reading, so bear with me on that too.  I'll catch up hopefully soon.  Anyway, here's some more framing I picked up:

Home is Where My Heart Blooms
Blackbird Designs
I was surprised that the framing turned out so well.  Joanne's did this one and the fabric was hopelessly stretched out of shape even though I worked on scroll rods.  The framer was a little dubious of the outcome, but he did a great job.  I did it on the called for fabric (whatever that was - too lazy to look it up - LOL) and he was concerned because not only was it out of shape, but was stained and crumpled.  I assured him that was how the fabric was suppose to be.  He raised an eyebrow like I was telling lies.  I think he thought that I'd driven over it with my car and spilled tea on it.  In fact, he asked if I had spilled something on it.  But he worked his magic and it's perfect.

Sampler of Stitches
Drawn Thread
I was a little bit on the fence with the framing on this one - I'm not into these types of frames, but IRL is really looks good.  I really enjoyed stitching this piece even though there were some errors on the charts.  I think that in a couple of places I changed out some colors and stitches.  I know that there was one metallic red that was only used in one small place.  Well, dang, when you buy a whole spool of a thread, you want to get some use out of it, so I replaced a couple things here and there so that I could feel like I got my monies worth out of that thread.

I did make a little bit of progress this week on Ann.  Are you getting bored with her??  I certainly am.  Although I have to say that I have my days - some days I can't stand looking at her - and some days I'm in love with her.  I think that if I could get some good stitching time in, I would feel the love so much more.  When you only get about 20 stitches done in one night, it gets a little frustrating because of the size of this thing.

Not a whole heck of a lot of progress at all.  I'm working on the lettering over to the right now, to catch up to the middle section so that I don't have to do all the lettering at one time.  Although, to tell the truth, I could just about do that lettering in my sleep (now there's a thought!  LOL  Wish that were possible).  I hope that it goes quickly, as I'd like to get the woman in so the man doesn't look so alone (although he does have a dog and squirrel to talk to).

Last weekend, Terri and I went to a Bead Show before our monthly Sampler Guild Meeting.  It was a trial trying to find a restaurant after the show even with the help of her Garmin.  I think her Garmin sent us to two closed restaurants!  It was fine though - I like to call those types of adventures "Scenic Tours" and just go with them.  It was funny!  I think that Garmin needs to update its system a little though.  The bead show was fun.  I'm not a beader in the least, but it's so interesting to see what there is to offer.  Of course, you know me, I can't walk out of anywhere without buying something.

I found these three wooden beads that I thought would look great at the end of scissor fobs - a frog, a mermaid and a snake (the mermaid can't sit up straight on her belly - perhaps the tatas get in the way!).  Now all I have to do is learn how to make those fobs.  I've been assured that it's not hard at all.

Then I found this fob and scissors.  The price was $15.00 and I was sure that it was only for the fob, but it wasn't!!  I thought it was a pretty good deal.  Especially because......

......the scissors actually fit into the end of the fob to keep the points safe!  I like them and it saves me from having to make one and I got a pair of scissors out of it.  Speaking of which, Jolene asked if my porcelain artichoke frog is full yet.  Well, almost Jolene (waving at ya).  I have to find three more pairs of scissors and it's filled.  I don't think that I'll have a hard time the way I've been going.  I'll take a picture soon.

The weather has been quite crisp up here in Michigan.  Unseasonably so.  I should take some pictures of the country roads around here because the colors are breathtaking!  Anyway, reading what blogs I could this week around all the computer problems, I stumbled across people working on knitting projects (yes, Mel, you've managed to pull me over to the wool side!  LOL)  So, I started hunting around in my stash for some knitting.  I found this wonderful Noro yarn.  Last year, I was going to make a sweater out of it, but when I got done with the back, even though I was on gauge, it was too small.  Well, I decided that I'd make a Entrelac scarf instead:

That's the back of the too small sweater on the right, but don't you just love how that works up?  This is going to be my travel project.  I find it easier to knit than to stitch in a car and will be perfect for working on while waiting for DD at dance and at her basketball games.  I have a hard time just sitting with nothing in my hands to work on.

I did manage some more thrift shopping this week, but I'll save that for another time.  It's amazing the stores you can find when you're trying to find a vacuum repair store!  LOL 

Well, that's all for now.  I hope that everyone has a wonderful weekend.  Again, thanks so much for your comments.  I love and appreciate every single one.  Make a lot of X's. 

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Stashing and Framing (But Barely Any Stitching)

Woo Hoo!  I finally got some framing back from Joanne's.  It took forever, but they had one of their great sales again, so I was all over that!  Usually it only takes a week or two, but it took four weeks this go around.

Cape Cod Girls
The Primitive Needle
36 ct. Highland Fabric
GAST Threads

I just love the frame for this one.  This picture doesn't do it justice, but it looks like fish scales with small flecks of gold in real life!  Very perfect for the piece!  Sometimes it surprises me that Joanne's actually has some great frames.

I also picked up Queen Bee by Shepherd's Bush:

Queen Bee
Shepherd's Bush Kit

I love the framing on this one too!  These are not the best pictures.  It's been cloudy as heck with little bursts of sun.  Taking a picture inside is hopeless, and just as I'd get outside, the sun would go away again.  Michigan weather for ya!

Stalking of the mailman proved successful this week!  He hates when boxes or large envelopes come because our mailbox is at the curb.  If he has to get out of his truck and walk up the drive and walkway, he gets cranky.  Poor man - he'll get over it!  The day he brought this package, the squirrels were in our Oak tree tossing acorns down at the poor guy.  He came up rubbing his head telling me we had vicious squirrels!  HA!

But I was doing a happy dance.  I love getting stash in the mail!  The box included Paradise Lost by Plum Street Samplers, A Mind Independent and Free by Carriage House Samplings, In the Garden by Milady's Needle (and Lois from the Elegant Stitch also included the Little Gems scissors with it), and the Kelmscott Adam and Eve Needleminder.

Then I just had to have The Multiplication Table Examplar (although I don't know if I'll dish out the $80.00 for the hornbook - may have to be a project for my FIL), and Sarah Woodham by Shakespeare Peddler. 

Then, of course, I just had to add to the scissor collection, so I got the Tudor Rose Scissors, and then while picking up my framing, I found the new scissors by Gingher which I had to have.  I have a lot of flower frogs to fill.

Then a couple of weeks ago, I won a Giveaway on M Designs site:

Sisters Needleminder by Kelmscott Designs

It was a great giveaway that included the JCS Christmas Ornament Issue (which I was tickled over because I couldn't find it in my neck of the woods), four of her Angel Charts, Miss Mary Mack's Pincushion and Miss Mary Mack's Needleroll.  She also included the Sisters beautiful Kelmscott Needleminder.  Okay, now don't you think that's enough?  Well, I guess I didn't.  I must be getting really itchy for some stitching on something else besides Ann.  I ended up ordering three more charts from The Strawberry Patch yesterday because they were having a Wacky Wednesday sale and all Country Stitches patterns were on sale.  I definitely think that my DH needs to take that smokin' charge card out of my hands. Either that or he'll divorce me when that bill comes!  But hey, 30% off is 30% off, right?  I'm saving money, right?

So lots of stash, and no time to do any of them.  Once again, stitching has taken a backseat to everything else - basketball games (DD's team 3-0 - Go Vikings), parent/teacher conferences, DH being out of town so for some reason I don't sit down until late, so no pictures of Ann this go-around.  I know you're all probably getting sick of her like me!  Okay, I'll give you one - does this thing not look like some kind of Pterodactyl?  It seems huge in comparison to the rest of the piece.

I actually tried to get myself to stitch something else the other night.  I pulled out a cute Halloween piece by Mary Garry, found some fabric and the threads and thought that it would only take me a night or two to stitch.  Did I?  Of course, not!  I started to pull the threads out and that danged bird above started screeching at me!  Dang!   Ann is relentless, let me tell ya!  Although, quite truthfully, I think it's me.  I really want to see her done and hanging near And They Sinned.  I started her December 31st 2005.  I'd really like to (if I'm not lucky enough beforehand) to put the last stitches in before December 31st 2009.

Well, that's it for me.  Thank you everyone for the wishes about my cold/flu thing.  I'm feeling much, much better now.  My SIL said that it had to have been Swine because the regular flu hasn't even hit the State yet.   I'm still coughing and sniffling, but that's nothing compared to what it was.  All I know is that it was miserable. But thanks so much for the wishes and for your comments. I love every one of them. 

Have a great weekend and make a lot of X's.

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Ghoulish Stuff and Ann Progress

Yesterday, I met up with Terri at the Ghoultide Gatherings show in Northville.  We had fun, but I think we were both a little disappointed by some of the prices.  I think that the highlight of the time we were there was meeting Lori of Notforgotten Farms. 

She is a great lady and after Terri and I introduced ourselves, there were hugs all around and I asked if I could take her picture.  She was happy to oblige (although I think I heard her mumble, "Do I have to??" - LOL).  So I took one, and then she allowed me to take another one.   She came around the table and:

FLASHER!  LOL  Do you not love it!  She had witches stockings on!  What a hoot!  I'm still cracking up!  She is so funny!  I think that we're both glad we met her!  Terri and I both picked up these cute little pins from her display:

But that's about all we bought.  The prices were pretty high.  But there were some great things there:

I think that box in the first picture ran about $300.00!  Yikes!  A little rich for my blood.  Oh well, I love the pin!  After that I needed to stop by my the not-so-local cross stitch store for some thread and hoping for maybe some stitchy stash purchases.  I've been working on Ann too long - I needed a fix!  So off Terri and I went anticipating spending with reckless abandon!  Not to be.  The store didn't go to Market so there was NOTHING!!!  ABSOLUTELY NOTHING!!!  Do you know how that feels to be all reved up and there is nothing to buy????  Almost like all dressed up and nowhere to go!  Well, I think we both bought some fabric (they don't have hand-dyed linen - ugh), a chart each, some needles and that's probably about it!  So disappointing!  Maybe God's way of telling me I already pre-ordered too much stuff!  LOL

Progress on Ann has been a tad slow!  This is about a week and a half worth of work.  Reason being is that I've been sick with the flu and it's been horrible!   It's been two weeks with this thing and I have good days and bad days.  I'm still coughing and stuffed up!  Sleeping a lot has been a plus, but not so much for trying to get anything done!  I almost had heart failure one night because instead of stitching I only had the energy to watch some lame criminal show on TV, and during the commercial break, I picked up the the directions for Ann and read over the directions for the next section (I'm getting antsy to get there).  But, OH MY GOSH, it's entirely filled in and the whole background is ----done in tent stitch ----one over one-----on 35 count fabric!!  I'll tell you, Ann almost got sent back to the WIP dungeon.  I can't handle all that in tent stitch.  But when I felt better, I looked over the pattern again and think that I can do two over two in that section and be fine.  If I had to do tent stitch, it would never get done.  The hair, face and the hands on the dude above took me two hours!  It's not the easiest fabric to stitch one over one on!

Anyway, work on the craft room has stalled to a dead standstill.  I'm really hoping that I can get in there this week (after I catch up on everything).  I did make a couple small accomplishments.  I hung up one wall unit without taking down the wall:

And I dug out some of my rulers and hung them up.  My FIL backed the insides of my craft table with peg board and it's perfect for keeping them out of the way, but within close reach. 

I know, not much accomplished, but just getting that small bit done made me feel good.  A lot of the past couple weeks I've been sleeping 14 hours a day!  Now to actually get down in the room and use it!  The room still looks like a tornado went through it, so ,therefore, no grand pictures yet.  But it all will get done......hopefully this week after I catch up on all the housework that has piled up!

Right before I came down with this nasty bug (actually the day I came down with it so I probably infected everyone I came into contact with), I visited my local antique dealer and he had found this for me:

Yeah, a silver one!  Now the collection is up to nine or ten!  Where do I stop?  DH would hope that I stopped soon!  The man also had a vaseline frog that glowed under neon lights, but unfortunately he's not known for having the best prices sometimes.  I bartered for this one and then called it a day!

Well, have to fold some clothes (my poor kids were down their last pair of underwear) and maybe a little cleaning (very little - I don't want to strain myself here), and try to catch up on the past three days of emails and blogs.

Have a great week and make a lot of x's.