Thursday, January 28, 2010

A Whole Lot of Nothing

Happy Thursday everyone!  I hope that you're staying warm or that it's warmer where you are than it is here.  We are really experiencing a blast of Arctic air here - it's miserable.  Probably 10 degrees with about 25/30 mph winds.  BRRRR!  Is all I can say!!

I really don't have much to talk about this week.  Stitching has taken a backseat to a million other things.  No surprise there!  But I've managed a little bit more on The Yellow House Sampler:

I really thought that I would whip through this one, but it's taken me a little longer than I'd thought - plus not a lot of stitching time.  And this chart is a real adventure with some mistakes in the key and a symbol totally missing from the key!  But it's fun to stitch, but that border is looming in the horizon and I don't especially like borders even though they're so essential to the piece.   And because the borders are really making my skin itch, I think that I need to start something else.  I am realizing that a lot of people just have a lot of WIPs going and I think that I need to adapt this philosophy in stitching.  But I need smaller things and I've pulled a couple out.  Who says you have to stay on one project to the end (not that I ever do, but......what's a few more???)

Anyway, part of the reason there has been no stitching time is the fact that I've been spending the evenings with my son honing his entries into the Business Professionals of America competitions.  He recently won 1st Place in Entrepreneurship for a business plan that he put together and 3rd Place on his speech on the Sub-Prime Mortgage Crisis in the Regionals.  The State Competitions are in March and we're just trying to get a jump on fine-tuning them because, as luck would have it, the ACTs and a couple other things he has going on are also about that time and I prefer he doesn't have a lot of stress with all that going on.  Anyway, he's looking forward to the State's  - he gets to be away from Mom and Dad (and pesky sister) for three days!  So by the time homework is over, we go over those papers and it's after 10:00 before the stitching chair can even become part of my evening, and I'm usually dead tired by then.

I want to thank everyone for their wishes about my oral surgery.  It went very well - much better than I anticipated.  When they told me it was going to be a three hour ordeal, I had some fears, but it only took a little over an hour and I felt pretty good after (although don't think for a minute that I didn't milk the whole thing for what it was worth for a day or too!)  LOL  My periodontist sent me flowers once again:

And once again, my husband said that he should keep the flowers and spare us a little on the total cost of the whole thing.

For all my attempts to get into the sewing room and whip up marvelous quilts for you to all ooh and awe over, I got this far:

Sorry for the dark picture - but it's only 16 squares - 9-1/2 inches square.  That it's.  All I got done.  I have 16 light squares the same size to do and some miscellaneous strips, etc., but the rotary cutter gave up the ghost and as luck would have it, I didn't have another blade.  So that's all I got around to this week.  Pathetic.

But as I was cutting these squares out, I had a lot of fabric ORTS, so I ended up thinking about ORTs and those SALS where you show your ORTS.  So we have quilt ORTS:

And we also have thread ORTs:

I put them in a Longaberger basket I have.  I also think that it's fun to dump the whole thing over some times.  Hey, different strokes for different folks, right?

You wouldn't believe how compacted this mess of threads is.  In a couple months, in the spring, I scatter them in the backyard and let the birds take them to make nests out of them (just have to keep metallic threads out of the ORT pile).   I may do that with the quilt ORTs too.  I think it would be kind of fun to see a piece of my fabric hanging from a nest!

The only excitement I really had this past week was getting some new scissors that Yuko had for sale on her blog.  Being a scissors whore, you know that I just had to have them.

But I didn't want to display them in one of my frogs, and found this cabinet at Home Goods to display the prettier scissors that I have.  I'm also going to cover the back with a better fabric than the beige that is in this.

I have to thank Kim for her help last week in identifying some of the fabric that I had AND also giving me a clue as to where I could find the pattern - RIGHT UNDERNEATH THE FABRIC - DUH!!!

These fabrics:

Will make this quilt:

The pattern was right underneath those rolls of fabric the whole time.  Thanks Kim!!!

Well, as you can see it's a been an unproductive and boring week.  It hasn't helped that just as I get my stride every morning this week (i.e, a few cups of coffee, a hot shower, etc.), the kids have been back in the door because of finals week.  UGH.  Next week should prove to be better.

Thanks again for all the wishes for my surgery, and all your wonderful comments every week.  I love getting them.  Hope that everyone has a wonderful weekend.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

A New Start and Startling Discoveries

Happy Tuesday everyone.  I have to thank everyone for your wonderful comments on Adam Alone!  I loved reading each and every one of them.  And thank you too for the concern about the bat.  We did find it, but I'll get to that in a little bit.

I had a new start this week.  Yes, another Adam and Eve.  If I don't do them, I'll never get my wall done.

The Yellow House Sampler
Sheepish Designs
DMC Threads and 35 ct. Pearled Barley

This is going so fast!!  And I'm lovin' every minute of working on it!  I don't know why I'm on such a tear with the Sheepish Designs charts at the moment.  Probably because they've been in my stash for so long I figured it was time to stitch them before I stitch some of my newer A&E's.

I received in the mail this week a very special something from Cari:

I just love them.  It seems that Cari and I share the same affection addiction to Adam and Eve samplers.  It's alway great to have a partner in crime.  Thank you so much Cari!!

Nothing much more on the stitching front this week except that I also worked on another Mary Little pillow for a friend of mine.  After three attempts of stitching it - two times on the wrong sized fabric - I finally got it done!  AUGHHH!  I don't know what I was thinking.  It was one of those head smack moments.

I've gotten myself into a real cleaning mode lately.  We had numerous boxes on shelves in our workroom that I had been through before, but decided that since a year had gone by, and I hadn't used anything in those boxes, it was time for purging.  The Salvation Army got two van-loads of things.  But in the past, almost five years that we've lived here, I had never gotten around to my boxes and bins with quilt things in it.  I realized that I hadn't really quilted in seven years, and the urge has come back strong.  So I finally went through the boxes and what great things I found:

Seeds of Change
Kansas Troubles
Moda Fabrics

Hmmmmmm, I don't remember ordering this.

Are these fabrics not gorgeous?  I plan on taking the ole rotary cutter to these this afternoon.

Then I found this box of Moda fabric rolls.  If I remember right, it came with two wooden spoons, but I think I needed one at some point.  For the life of me I can't remember if they're for a certain quilt or not as I usually box the pattern in with the fabric.  Kim, do you have any idea what these fabrics could possibly be for (I'm relying on a Moda expert's opinion here - LOL)?

(Edited to add that Kim did identify the fabric and asked if the pattern was under all the fabric - but that, of course, would be too easy.  Well, Kim guessed the fabric correctly and yes, there was a pattern under all the fabric called Hearth and Home.  Thanks Kim!!!!!)

Next up is Old Glory from the book  Summer Weekend by Blackbird Designs.  I had originally thought that my first attempt at a BBD quilt would be Home Sweet Home, but since all the fabrics are wonderfully arranged for me (thanks to a BOM program I was in) I'm going to start with this one.  I'm not a hand quilter, but you have to start sometime.  This will be a great project to work on while DD is dancing.  For some reason I hate lugging cross stitch around.

Then another BOM from a shop.  I've been aching to work on a Civil War Quilt - I've seen a few on the blogs that I just love, but I'm trying to make 2010 the year of being frugal,  so since I've found one in my stash, the wallet is safe for a little bit!

And the next one (and last - I won't bore you with all of them now), is the Mother of all Samplers (kind of like Ann Medd, but in the quilting world):

The Jane Stickle quilt.  All 225 blocks of loveliness.  Another BOM, so all the fabrics are at hand!  This one is going to be a challenge.  But I figure that I have no deadline on this - it's only been sitting around here for the past seven years.  So now is the time.  It will probably take me seven years to complete, but what the heck!!  What thrills me more is that the software that goes along with the quilt is compatible with my old computer (which still runs if you talk nice to it), so I think I'm all set.

And now the bat  It was found and safely removed from the house.  It showed up at 3:45 Saturday morning in the guest room where I had fallen asleep reading.  Luckily I had pulled the covers down and gotten under them when I was reading.  Because when I heard that thing, those covers flew over my head!!!  UGH!!!  At one point I reached out and turned the reading lamp on and saw it on the floor, but was afraid to move.  I didn't want to call anyone either for fear that it would fly out of the room when the door was opened.  I finally got the nerve to high-tail it out of the the room, shoved a towel under the door and wake up DH.  We called a Bat Removal service who was there an hour later, walked into the room (the bat was hanging from the window treatment) shined a light on it and removed it with tongs.  Humanely, by the way.  He takes them back to his shop, makes sure they're okay and then releases them.  So all's well that ends well.  But what a fright!!

Well, that's all the fun for me this week.  Tomorrow I'm finally having the sinus lift and implant done.  I'm not looking forward to this at all.  I guess I'm suppose to rest for a few days after this procedure to prevent excessive bleeding being surgery in the head (bloody noses, etc), so I'm thinking that this just may be a good excuse to sit and stitch.  What do you think?

Have a wonderful week and thank you again for all your wonderful comments.

Friday, January 8, 2010

Adam Alone Happy Dance

Woo Hoo!  My first finish of 2010!  If I keep going at this rate, I may just have a bunch of finishes this year (okay, don't hold your breath anyone)!!

Adam Alone
Sheepish Designs
DMC threads and WDW 35 ct. Parchment Linen

I love the verse on this piece.

These two rather innocent birdies gave me an untold amount of grief.  I couldn't get them in for the life of me - I kept stitching them wrong!  At 11:00 last night, after ripping them out twice (and they're over one, no less), I called UNCLE and went to bed, but the minute I got up this morning, and everyone was out of the house, I was back in my stitching chair finishing it up.

I did make a couple additions to this - Adam and Eve needed a little bit of improving, so I did some backstitching on them in a darker flesh color.  I probably could have gone a little bit darker, but I think it's okay.  And then I outlined the sheep at the bottom to make them stand out a little better.  This was a lot of fun to stitch and I didn't run screaming down the street because of the Queen Stitches or the over one.

Yesterday, my friend Diane and I had our Christmas lunch (funny how two moms can't find time during the actual holiday to get together) and she surprised me with this:

Is it not beautiful???  These are not the best pictures which is a shame (why does the sun always go away when I want to take pictures), but the finishing is absolutely beautiful and I just love it!  Thank you, thank you Di!!!

Well, that's it for me this time.  Wow, a short post - what a concept!  But I've got to get going because we seem to have a bat flying around the house.  When I left the house to pick up my son this afternoon, my DD called me completely hysterical and said a bat was flying around the house (it could be a bird).  Well, I haven't see it yet so don't know what it is, but there is evidence on the walls that something has been flying around the house.  It probably came in through the furnace vent to the outside.  Looks like I'm going to have some fun tonight!!  Dang, and all I want to do is stitch!!

Thank you so much for stopping by and leaving all your wonderful comments!

Friday, January 1, 2010

Do You Make New Year's Resolutions???

Happy New Year everyone!  I hope that you've had and are having a wonderful and healthy start to the new year!!!  Can you believe that it's 2010???  It feels like I just watched the ball drop on 2009 yesterday?  Where the heck does the time go???  I guess it's true what they say about time going faster as you get older.

Do you make New Year's Resolutions?  Do you start a new project on January 1st?  I'd love to hear what you've resolved to do in the coming year and any projects you hope to start.  I started a couple projects before the ball dropped on 2009.  On the day after Christmas, I started (or should I say restarted) the Sarah Pope sampler by Sheepish Designs (excuse the poor quality of all these pictures - it's a gloomy day here):

Sarah Pope 1773
36 ct. Reindeer Fabric
DMC Threads

I originally started this back many years ago and put it down because the dreaded Queen Stitches were used throughout the design.  I resurrected it again and posted at some point (back in May, I think), that I had her on my hit list to finish up.  Well, I pulled her out, but hated the fabric I originally did it on (36 count natural linen, I think), so started her over.  I also anguished over the colors used - mainly rusts and light rusts.  The chart reads more mauve, so I spent a few hours with my head swimming over that.  I ended up going with the original colors and like it.  Lots of different stitches (the border is Rice Stitch), and yes, those dreaded Queen Stitches, but I rather like doing them now so it should be a lot of fun.

And then last night, I started And All Was For An Appil by the Scarlett Letter for my New Year's start:

And All Was For An Appil
The Scarlett Letter
40 ct. Busy Bee Blend
DMC Threads

I really went back and forth on the fabric for this one.  The picture above doesn't show really any color but it's a yellowish fabric with some mottling.  I think it's going to look great when it's done, although it's going to take me a while.  I have to admit that I spent about five hours circling the floss toss I did and asking everyone's opinions on it.  All the fill-in is time consuming, although mindless, and think that I'll probably do a little section at a time and then move on to another project through the year.

I also got my A block done on the Prairie Schooler Alphabet SAL and a little bit of the B block:

This is a lot of fun to stitch.  I'm planning on doing one block a month.  Yes, it will take me over two years, but that's okay.  These look small, but there's a lot of stitching going on in each one.

As far as resolutions go - I'm only making two.  I usually don't stick to any resolutions I make, so I figure why embarrass myself even making them.  I have the true Gemini personality to be sure - I'm always back and forth with my stitching (among other things).  Stitching ADD is what I have.  So I'm just going to embrace it and go where my heart wants.  Who cares if there are a ton of scroll rods with half finished projects lurking in the corner - it's all about what's fun (at least I'm telling myself that - LOL).  Anyway, the first resolution I'm making is to stitch from stash this year.  Yes, I did order a chart and fabric for my New Year's start (which was to be Ann Rayner and which never showed up in time), but I realize that I have so many great patterns in my stash.  It's time to stitch those babies up!

The second resolution I have this year is to finish Ann Medd:

Ann Medd
The Scarlett Letter
DMC Threads

What a whopper!!  At this point she measures 32 inches long!!  When I unrolled her to take this picture, I fell in love all over again.  I think that having her wound around a scroll rod makes me forget just how wonderful a project this is (although so large).  I just have a little bit of lettering to go in this section and then it's down to the final section.  Looking at these pictures, I think I'm going to have to give her some love tonight!!  So there you have it - I've made two resolutions and I'm going to try like hell to live up to them!!!

Christmas was good around here.  I asked for nothing really (I'd rather the kids get what they want), but DH surprised me with a new IMac.  Seems that it was just too expensive to fix the old computer when we could have a new one for pretty close to the same price.  I just love this thing, but after having a Dell for so long, it's taken me a little bit to get used to - but it's so fun!!  And then DH also surprised me with this:

I've wanted one of these for the longest time! Perfect for the craft room!!  Ginger has one other plate that I've got my eye on for the bathroom in the basement (where the Mermaids are residing) and maybe I can scam that for my birthday (fingers crossed).

Well, that's it for me.  I need to get that Christmas tree broken down (yes, the one that's going to find itself on the curb this year for sure).

I want to thank everyone who has visited my blog and left comments or emails for me this year.  I have loved reading each and every one of your comments and wish I had the time to answer each one of you back.  I've met some wonderful and very generous people this year.  People I hope that I know for years to come.  Your stitching and blogs are a source of amazement and inspiration to me.  I wish all of you a healthy, peaceful, prosperous and stitchy New Year!