Monday, March 29, 2010

AND THE WINNER IS.............


JOLENE of Dip Diddly Designs!!!!!!!!


Out of 260 entries (between following, comments, etc.), I am surprised the number selected by the Random Generator came in so low!!!  I wanted to post the widget, but for some reason I can't get it to load into this post!  BUT CONGRATULATIONS AGAIN, JOLENE!!!!!  Email me with your snail mail and I'll get the frog out to you!!!

And thank you everyone for entering - whether you have been a follower or are a new follower, or just someone that discovered my blog.  I've discovered some wonderful new blogs and stitching from the comments that you have left.  I wish that all of you could have won - although I don't think that I could have found that many flower frogs!!  I'll keep looking!!!

Hope that everyone has a wonderful week!!!

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Spring Means Giveaway Time and more Thank You's

Spring has officially arrived, although by the looks of some parts of the country you'd wonder otherwise.  And I wanted to post this yesterday, but it was birthday party time in the family.  Not my immediate family, but my niece, nephew and BIL all celebrated their birthdays yesterday so it was busy.  Now the only thing wrong with that picture is that I didn't get to partake in cake three times - there was just one party - therefore, one cake!  A big cake, mind you, but just one cake!  Boo!  I love cake and my SIL makes the best ones.  So I wish there were three (although my waist line thanks me for not eating cake three times)!!!

Anyway, so as I'm always a day late and a dollar short, I think it's time to officially celebrate the beginning of Spring.  So to celebrate, it's Giveaway Time (almost as good as cake!).   So what would be good to give away for Spring?  Spring stand for flowers, I think.  And in the Spring, well, frogs start to appear, right?  Of course, to us stitchers frogs seem to appear during all seasons of the year whether we like it or not!  But this frog is a good one.  But it's not green.........'s pink!!!  Another one of those pink flower frogs.  Seems that my thrift shop and antique store jaunt last week paid off.  I found some new ones - but I only made it to one of the stores - this one store was so filled with wonderful things that I didn't have time to make it through the whole thing.  But I met a dear woman who worked there who was as enthusiastic about finding frogs in the store as I was and to top it off,  her mother collected these things.  She passed away and now her daughter doesn't know what to do with them.  Well, she knows what to do with them now!!!  She's been keeping them at home, just bringing in a few at a time, but she's bringing in some more for me to look at next week.  It should be fun.  So my good fortune - well, I want to spread it around.

The rules are really simple, just leave a comment for one chance, become a follower for another chance (or if you're already a follower, you'll get a second chance - I know who you are), and if you post it on your blog, you'll get one more chance.  I'll do the Random Generator thingy on March 29th!  There will be some other goodies with it, but I haven't decided what those will be yet.

I also want to thank a few people for their generosity recently.  I won a beautiful scissor fob from a giveaway that Mylene had and it came in the mail this week:

Isn't it pretty? (pictures are clickable).  Mylene did the most beautiful job stitching this and finishing it off!  Thank you so much Mylene, I love it.  And by the way, it came all the way from the Netherlands.

I also received four more awards this week:

I received the Beautiful Blogger from both Isadarena and from FayeRaye.  I can't tell you how wonderful you girls made me feel.

Sherry and Jennifer both sent me The Sunshine Award.  Jennifer said that I inspired her and I have to say that I'm truly humbled by her comment and the fact that all four of these ladies sent me these awards this week.  I don't feel like much of an inspiration.  It's all of you, the readers of this blog, and who have blogs that I can read that inspire me!!!  I can't tell you how many times someone's gorgeous stitching has made me yank things out of stash or made me try to set my charge card on fire.  Or someone's quilt has made me fly to the sewing machine.  Every blog I read is inspiring and I'm so glad that our paths have crossed.  I can't thank each one of you enough for really making my week.

I'll save the stitchy and thrift/antique shopping finds (and they're good ones) until next time.   I just wanted to thank everyone for their wonderful comments and for the wonderful awards I've received recently before too much time went by.

I wish each and every one of you a wonderful week and to quote my friend Di, stitch until it hurts!!! (hope you don't mind I used that, Di!!!).   

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Happenings at Chateau Roman

Okay, lame title, but you know, you just run out of snappy titles sometimes.  Actually not much is happening in recent days at the Chateau, so nothing real recent - like in the last week.  Spring always seems to bring a flurry of things with the kids and once again, I start living out of my car - so not a lot of crafting is accomplished.  And I'm so behind on blogs and emails - I'll catch up soon!

Anyway, it's a beautiful day here in Michigan - bright, sunny (oh, is that what that glowing ball in the sky is? - scared me for a minute), and it's warm - so warm that I had to take a walk this morning (after the grocery shopping, that is).  Going through my neighborhood is like a nature walk.  This morning I had my path crossed by a red fox (rather scrawny looking and leering at my thighs and licking his lips, and eight deer roaming the woods - one of them an albino deer which I had never heard of or seen before - definitely need to take a camera next time)!

In my own Garden of Eden around the old Chateau, we also have those two half-naked people in Paradise.  They've been finished for a week or so, but I just got around to the staining:

Margaret Pence 1781
The Goode Huswife
40 ct. Daily Grind (Walnut Ink Stained) and DMC Threads

This was fun, although once again, I can't stitch these smaller pieces without making mistakes.  Luckily they're not glaring. The only change I made to this was the date - since the date of her sampler was 10 days before my birthday, I changed it to my birthday.  I'm on to my next A and E and another project, although not much to show on either one of them yet so I'll hold those till next time.

I don't know why, probably because of Easter and it being spring, I always seem to get into some kind of sewing mood - not to do quilts or things like that, but to make fun things.  I went through the same thing last year, and that bunny, from Country Stitches, is now my header for Easter.  Anyway, I saw this pattern recently in my web surfing and decided I needed to make one:

She's meant to be a pincushion, and I'm still waiting for the base for her, so I have her sitting on one of my grandmother's antique egg cups.  And I just realized that I didn't put blush on her ears!  I'll have to do that.  Anyway, this pattern is Cottontail Pincushion by Under The Garden Moon, and she was a snap to finish up!  For some reason, I've fallen in love with pincushions and recently bought a few patterns to do. She's the first and was so quick - one night!  A couple blogging friends, Siobhan, in particular, has been trying to get me to stitch some seasonal things.  I so stink at doing that, but do you think that this qualifies???  I know it's not cross stitch, but.......?????

Here's another one that I made, but it was a year or so ago.  This was from Lori Birmingham:

I finally finished up my Bullseye Quilt, too.  Taken as a whole I really love it, but when I was working with some of those blocks, especially after you cut them in quarters and put them back together again, well, they offended me:

This turned out to be a lot of fun to do and not quite as wonky as I thought it would be.  I can't wait until I get it quilted and washed so that the edges of the circles fray.  I had a couple people ask me about cutting the layers away as you sewed the circles.  Since I can't really describe it without too lengthy of a description, I'll have to construct a block and take pictures as I go along.  But it's very easy to do.

With that quilt finished I started another one.  This one is a Civil War quilt called Women's Voices, but I only have a little bit of it put together.  These are the first set of blocks:

And these are the second set although not completely put together:

This was a BOM and included fabric to make two blocks in different colorways every month.  It will end up being a king sized quilt when I'm finished.  I was surprised at the size of the blocks - 15 inches each.  I am very proud of myself that these are from stash from a few years ago, and not some of the new goodies that I bought, although those have been really calling my name.  These blue and green blocks are called different things depending on how you lay out the fabric.  It can be called Underground Railroad, Jacobs Ladder or Trail of the Covered Wagon in Mississippi and the prairie states.  I love how each month there is a little history written about each block.

I have barely done anything on my poor rug since my class last Thursday.  My last class, I might add, and I'm going to miss it.  I hope that I can get involved with the Monthly group that Kris has.  This is all the progress I've made:

Not a lot of progress and I'm seriously of thinking about tearing out the white yet once again.  I don't like working with white anyway - whether it's in xstitch or now wool, and I can see all kinds of glaring mistakes I did, but Kris told me it looks fine and will look better when it's steamed.  And it's my first - a learning process - but still, it bugs me.  Part of the whole problem is that I haven't had a frame so it's been hard to get my loop length consistent while trying to balance a quilt hoop in my lap - not the best thing to hook a rug on.  But Mr. Postman - hero that he is (don't tell him that though, he's really a crank), dropped off the frame yesterday.  Was I home?  Of course not, so I'm high-tailing it to the post office now to pick it up!

Well, that's about all that's going on around here.  I don't expect to get too much done in the next week or so with all the kids activities, etc.  Plus I just realized that this is the time of year again for my annual Spring thrifty/antique store time.  Seems next week is about the only free week (knock on wood) that I see for a while, so hopefully the weather will hold out, I can get my Cafe Mocha from Mickey D's, crank up some tunes in the car and drive in pursuit of fun things.  Maybe!  Those fun times are always subject to change.

Thanks so much again for all your wonderful comments.  I loved the comments I received last time, especially those of you that shared a little fun fact about yourself.  Have a wonderful week and make it stitchy!!!

Friday, March 5, 2010

Change is Good!

Happy Friday everyone!!!  I don't know about the weather in your part of the country, but it's an absolutely beautiful day here.  Sunny, warming up, snow melting!  In the 40's all weekend!!  Definitely has to put you in a happy mood.  For some reason I keep hearing Martha Reeves and the Vandella's singing Heat Wave!  LOL   But it's also made me have Spring fever in the worst way, so I have barely spent a minute in the house the past week and when I have, all I can say is that you can see your reflection in my shower tiles - okay, maybe not, but they're clean!  LOL  I even tried to clean up my blog, but I'm not sure that I like it.  I'll just have to play with it some more.   It also made me clear out my change basket for some goodies, but I'll get to that in a bit (beware - a lot of pictures).

I didn't get a lot of stitching done this week.  Another night or two and this baby will be finished:

Margaret Pence.  I do love stitching on this, but once again, those danged frogs came out of hiding and were snipping at my tail all week!  I don't know what it is about these smaller pieces, but they are the bane of my existence.  My next piece will definitely have to be a larger piece.

Quilting is going slow too.  I've made a little bit of progress.  I went from this:

To this - kind of scary doing that:

To this:

Kind of crazy blocks, don't you think?  I have a hard time with combining all these crazy fabrics together.  As we all know, I'm anal - I like things to match up, coordintate, live in perfect harmony when finished.  This doesn't even come close - not even the circles match up because you cut them freehand!  So this is a real learning experience for me - learn not to be anal!  I hope to have the whole quilt pieced in the next couple days - that is if I stay home long enough to do it!

Yesterday, I had my rug hooking class, and I just love it.  Problem is that rug hooking doesn't seem to like me.  This is my progress or lack of progress.  Instead of going forward, I've gone completely backward.  In other words, I sheared my sheep:

Poor sheepie.  Thank goodness it's getting warmer around here because this poor thing is bare!  I don't hook high enough.  I seem to have the hang of it, but my loops aren't high enough, so I pulled the whole thing out.  I do love going to class though.  Kris is a great teacher.  Yesterday we learned about binding our rugs.  I think I'm a long way off for that!  But you may want to check our her blog.  She's posting a rug a day and her rugs are just beautiful.  So beautiful in fact, that I just had to pick up this baby:

This was the beauty that was staring out from the background in my last post.  I just have to do her, but like I said, I've got to get those loops higher!  I'm going for a make up class tomorrow, so more fun and more eye candy.

Anyway, Spring brings change, and I had a whole lot of it:

I throw all my change into this basket.  When it gets full, I roll it and start over again.  If there are a lot of quarters when this baby is full, I rake in about $100.00  I could get rich with the amount of change that my kids leave laying around, that comes out of their pants pockets on laundry, etc.  I also collect those bills that come out of pockets.  I don't keep anything over $5.00.  Unfortunately, I think my kids are catching on to my change snatching because I haven't seen a lot of it in the past couple of weeks.  So, anyway, I collect all the change, roll it, and hide it away.  But, of course, I'm not a rich woman because I go on road trips and spend it all on stash.

First stop was a quilt store that I had not been to before as it's quite a distance from my house, but near my rug hooking class, and well, you just have to kill two birds with one stone, right?  So I came home with this:

A bunch of patterns!!

And more patterns.  The fabric in the front are my first three installments of the Farmer's Wife Quilt.  But I needed the book before I can start on it, so had to pick that up along with the BBD book.

Then I had to pick these up!  Done in Civil War prints.  This store, Wendy's Simple Stitches in Howell, Michigan, had a whole room of Civil War fabrics.  Oh, be still my heart.!!! I have a funny feeling that I'm going to be burning a lot of that Goodyear rubber going out to that shop.

Then I had to make a couple trips out to my not so local LNS' to see what new Market goodies there were.  Now mind you, I wasn't going to buy a thing (yeah, famous last words):

Obviously the bad won over the good in this case and I didn't listen to me telling myself that I didn't need anything more to stitch.  And I'm still not finished.  Becky RAK'd me with a gift certificate to Down Sunshine Lane that I have to use and I did do a little bit of web surfing too.  I just had to have those scissors to add to the collection, and the sheep and tape measure just because, well, I'm a hooker now too.  And I love, love the BBD book.  So many great projects to do in that book.  I can't wait to dive into it!    Most of these goodies came from Stitches 'N Things, but I also picked up a few things at the The Rocking Horse  This store is a feast for the eyes, but the only thing lacking is that they don't carry the linens us sampler lovers love.  But here are a couple pictures:

This is the upper level (sorry for the dark picture)

Part of the lower level.  There is more behind me, but I forgot to take a picture of it.

This shop has a ton of things in it.  I forgot to take a picture of the Shepherd's Bush area, but I think you can see that it's full of eye candy.  Models are hanging all over the shop.  But they're not into the sampler things that I particularly like, but still fun to go to.

So that's been my week!  I definitely had Spring fever.  I'm exhausted.  All that shopping can really tire you out!  LOL  I do try to rationalize these purchases with the thought that my summer is really crazy with the kids and road trips are not something that usually happens.  So I need to stock up now!

Well, I'm off to catch up on everyone's blogs.  I've barely read anything in the past few days.  Tomorrow I'm going for a make-up hooking class, and I'm hoping that my sheep will look sheepy again.  And on Sunday I'm going to rest and play with all my goodies.  Okay, I lie.  I see a lot of laundry (oh, maybe more change too) and more cleaning in my future, but I can think about all the stitching goodies.  Maybe next week I can play with them - I'm not getting back in my car except for my hooking class if I can help it.

Thanks for stopping by and leaving comments when you do.  I do love hearing from everyone.  Have a wonderful weekend, and I hope that it's warming up in your part of the world too!