Wednesday, December 23, 2009

A Crazy Time of the Year, Computer Issues and 10 Book Challenge

It has been such a busy two weeks and I'm sure it has been for everyone!  I always feel like I've been sucked up in the tornado that went through Kansas and dumped down in a heap after the holidays!  But I do love it so, especially because my kids aren't getting any younger and I know that in a few years I'm going to be missing all the hustle and bustle, kitchen with flour and sprinkles from one end to the other, the kids being excited on Christmas morning (well, DD still is, DS is getting too old I think). 

Not a lot of stitching to show since I last posted:

Some of the verse on Adam Alone.  This over one stitching is killing me.  By the time I've been landing in the stitching chair, my eyes are just about crossed from sleepiness, but I've been plugging along.

And progress on my Prairie Schooler alphabet.  This is stitched one over one too!  I've already messed this thing up, but I'm going to keep plugging along.  I made the length of the block one square too long so there is an extra row above the A, and then for some reason I made the bird's tail one square over into the margin, but I think I can work around that.  I love how this looks and have set my goals on one block a month - we'll see what happens.  All of this stitching over one makes me want to pull out something else that's a little easier to work on, but I'm trying hard to resist.  Although I'll tell ya a little secret - I ordered a new pattern - Ann Rayner - that I hope arrives soon so that I can have her as a New Year's start -  Gotta have a gift to yourself, don't you think?

Other than that it's been cooking, baking, last minute shopping, wrapping, etc.  But then thrown into the mix to make me crazy was an emergency run to the Orthodontist for DD as she broke two brackets on her braces (she thought that she could just eat a couple Fritos - NOT), a couple items that needed to be picked up for relatives that DH forgot to mention, our computer crashed big-time so I'm hopelessly behind on all the blog reading (so bear with me - I'll get there) and I broke a tooth.  I was scheduled for my sinus lift and implant on January 4th, but it now seems that I need a root canal on this broken tooth, so that will have to moved once again.  How did I get so lucky to get all this excitement?  LOL

And I figure I can publish my list of books that I read for the reading challenge.  I didn't make ten - I made nine, and the book I'm reading now is probably going to take me through the end of the year.  But here's what I did get read:

1.  My Life In France by Julia Child
2.  Julia Child by Noel Riley Fitch (was I on some kind of Julia kick??)
3.  Mental by Eddie Sarfaty
4.  The Guersey Literary and Potatoe Pie Society by Mary Ann Shaffer
5.  Olive Kitteridge by Elizabeth Strout
6.  Finger Lickin' 15 by Janet Evanovich
7.  Twinkie Deconstructed by Steve Ettlinger
8.  The Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet by Jamie Ford
9.  Audition by Barbara Walters

As I said, I probably won't get Audition done as it's a large book.  I am enjoying it though.  I never was a huge fan of hers, but I'm enjoying her book.

Well, that's it for me.  Still more baking to do for our Christmas feast tomorrow night!  My in-laws are Polish and always have their big dinner on Christmas Eve.  And yes, there is homemade kielbasa, periogies, the most wonderful mushroom borsht and just about anything else you can think of as being Polish.  It's a sweatpants kinds of meal!  LOL

Hope that everyone has a wonderful, peaceful and joyous Christmas.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Very Little Except Mary Little

Happy Thursday everyone!  Are you braving the cold and snow in your neck of the woods?  Winter sure came through with a vengence yesterday, but we didn't get more than a few inches of snow.  But enough wind to make it bitterly cold and blow the wreaths off my windows outside and it's still howling out there.  I tried to get some Christmas shopping done this morning, but the mall near my house is an open air mall - definitely not the best place to shop on a day like today!!

I know that I'm breaking from convention with not having a Christmas finish, but the fill-in on my angel was driving me nuts, so I went searching for something little and came up with Mary Little:

Mary Little 1840
The Good Huswife
DMC Threads

Ivory 32 count tea dyed linen

I wish that I could get a better picture of this because I used Vonna's tea and coffee dyeing tutorial and I was absolutely thrilled with how it came out.  You may be able to see it better if you click on the picture.  I had the homespun fabric in my stash, but the linen was as white as snow, so I wanted the linen to be a better match. 

I started the Prairie Schooler SAL that Vonna also set up.  I'm making this my Sunday stitch for a while because that seems to be the day I can get the most stitching done.  I didn't get too far, but since I know this is going to take me a while, I might as well just enjoy the journey and get what I can done:

Prairie Schooler Alphabet SAL
DMC Threads and 28 count Ivory Jobelan
Stitched one over one

Other than that, it's just been decorating and shopping.  DD finally got all the ornaments on the tree - or as many as she could get on before I stopped her.  When she was done she called me out and this is what I found:

Pretty funny if you ask me, but she's a ham.  Anyway, here's our tree.  Usually I have garland on it, but this year, even though there may look like some spare branches, there weren't after I did some rearranging:

Now, for the life of me I couldn't get a picture where you could really see the lights on it.  As I said, I've done a little bit of rearranging of ornaments when she wasn't around, but she did a great job.  A couple more of my favorite ornaments are, of course, Wizard of Oz:

And Noah's Ark:

(Yes, I did cut the tag off this one!!)

I'm just finishing up the decorating in our family room today, but my husband brought home some beautiful poinsettias.  I think that red would have looked a little better because the room accents are red, but he said that he couldn't find two the same size.  In any event, they're beautiful. (Just a note here that the picture leaning against the fireplace has only been waiting for three months for DH to put up - he's always a little slow!!).

Well, that's all for me.  I want to get the family room finished up today.  When I think about it, Christmas is in , what, two weeks?  Yikes.  Still not done with the shopping!!!

Before I go (and I'm editing this post to include this), the great ladies over at The Quilt Shoppe are having a great Holiday Bingo - check it out:

Hope you have a great weekend and:

(you know that this is DD's ornament, don't you??!!  :0)

Friday, December 4, 2009

So Little Stitching

It seems like I just can't my stitching mojo back since I've returned back from my trip.  Of course, you know it took me at least three days to clean up the mayhem that resulted while I was gone!  Then, of course, there was Thanksgiving and trying to get the tree up, etc.   I've barely gotten any stitching done this week:

Sorry for the rather dark pics.  Winter came to Michigan last night with a dusting of snow on the rooftops and deck.  And the sun doesn't want to stay out for anything.  Anyway, I stitched up the border to the point that I've gotten to (have I ever mentioned I don't like borders - bad for someone who likes samplers), got the grass in with more of the Florentine stitch and made no mistakes like I did with the upper portion.  Then I ran out of steam when I got to the over-one letters.  That and that fact that I've been so enabled by everyone's blogs who are doing Christmasy things that it's made me feel like a Scrooge.  So I went into the stash pile and picked out a couple of things to do.  One was Angel Song by Shepherd's Bush.  I had seen Isadarina's start on this a while ago and decided that I needed to do it.  Well, I pulled it out, but didn't start it (figures).  I started this instead:

Hark the Herald Angel
Ewe Eye & Friends (Twisted Threads)

Again, bad pic, but I thought this would be a fun, quick stitch to work on.  Considering I've only worked on it two nights, I've made good progress for me!  I also finally rounded up the supplies for the PS Alphabet SAL and hope to start in on that this weekend.

I received some goodies in the mail this week.  Be still my heart for these fabrics:

Fat quarters from Moda's French General line thanks to Kim (Enabler Extraordinaire)!  She was the one that made me order that Phebe quilt that I alluded to in my last post.  Twisted my arm and everything!  Only kidding, but ya gotta blame someone, right!  Anyway, I can't wait to get the rotary cutter in hand and go at these.  Although I still haven't settled on a quilt to make with them yet.

Speaking of the Phebe quilt, I finally found a fairly good picture of it:

I am so in love with this quilt.  The center reminds me of a sampler with those two A&E-ish people.  I can't wait to get it.  I can wait to do the applique because I'm not very good at that, but I will learn.  I want this quilt too badly not too.  There is another quilt from this company too that I would like called the Civil War Bride quilt and you can see it on this blog - Civil War Bride Quilt  But that one has a lot more applique, so I think I should get my feet wet with Phebe first.

Then a couple weeks ago I won Jennifer's giveaway and received this Sensibility chart from The Sampler Girl and Jennifer included a fat quarter in with the chart:

I love them both and I think the fabric is going to look great in the Phebe quilt when I make it.  Jennifer's and my wedding anniversaries (18 years for me) are the same day - the day after Thanksgiving.  Kind of a cool thing knowing someone who was married the same day as you!  Speaking of Jennifer, she's having a great give-away on her blog so you may want to check it out!!!

Pathetic person that I am, my tree is still being decorated.  I keep begging for one of those pre-lit trees, but DH whines in the background, "But this tree still looks so good" (read - I am cheap!  LOL).  Well, it does, but my hands look like a disaster after I put the danged thing together.  Last year, after I took it down, I managed to drag the thing in its box out to the curb for the trash collector.  DH intercepted it and I walked down the basement a few days later and discovered it partially hidden in the corner of the workroom!  UGH!  Like seeing something out of horror movie!!!  This will be my last year - mark my words!  Anyway, when I get all the lights on it, there are over 3,000.   I'm surprised I haven't burned the house down.  But it's still not finished, DD and I will do that tonight - she insists on doing the tree trimming this year.  Our tree is nothing fancy, but encompasses ornaments from our lives:

This one I painted probably 24 years ago when I had a little Yorkie and was in my artsy-fartsy painting mode.

These two I just collected - the bear for my daughter when she was little and the hot air balloon , just because I liked it.

Then, of course, there are always the ones that the kids make you in school.  This one is compliments of my DD.

Well, that's about it for me this week.  Now I'm off to peruse Ebay, Amazon and assorted places to see what items my kids have on watch for me to buy for them!  There's no telling what's in there!  DD has probably marked everything that has a Peace symbol on it as something she wants - she's going through a stage with Peace symbols.  But, heck, it makes life so much easier sitting at the computer and not having to fight the crowds.  Then I need to string garland up the stairs, lug up the rest of the ornaments (which if DD has her way, every single one will be on that tree), and do some other decorating. 

Thanks for all your comments again.  I'm so happy that you stop and say hello.  Have a great weekend and make a lot of X's.