Sunday, September 30, 2012

The End of September

Okay, I know that this sounds lame - but what the heck happened to September???  Seems to me that I just made a blog post and was just getting the kids back up to school.  Now I'm seeing Halloween (and in some cases, Christmas decorations - what's up with that?) in the stores, and October starts tomorrow!!  I thought that with school starting and everyone back to their respective jobs and school, my life would be free - free to quilt and stitch with reckless abandon.  Guess it didn't happen that way.  I had such good intentions on posting on a more regular basis.  Didn't happen.  But maybe things will get better, right?

There has been very little stitching going on - at least that I can show.  My progress on Charlotte Clayton (excuse the folds - too lazy to press) has been really lackluster:

Not a heck of a lot for the month of September or since my last blog post.  Mr. (or Mrs) Kitty Cat is in and so is Mr (Mrs). Rooster/Peacock - I'm not sure what that's suppose to be.  I would have been much further along, but I met with an unfortunate incident of "I can't count" (happens more than I care to admit) and I had to frog out an entire nights worth of stitching:

He's missing his whiskers, but the thread just came for those, so I will have to add them in.

I've also been stitching a little bit here and there on the Susan Singleton SAL which I can't show pictures until December, but we've had a new addition to the SAL list - Evelyne from Eef's Needle.  I think that we're now up to 8 participants.  Welcome Evelyne!!! The rest of the participants are listed in my previous blog post and if you'd like to jump on the SAL bandwagon - don't hesitate - the more the merrier!  Here's Susan just to refresh your memory - an ambitious project to say the least - but we're breaking it down over a two year span - plenty of time to finish the sampler (so I say with hesitant confidence):

So what has been happening besides my mediocre stitching?  Well, DD had a little mishap in walking one day.  Actually, not her fault - Mr. Bailey decided to bury a bone under his blanket, DD walked across the blanket, turned her ankle - and ended up fracturing her foot (see Bailey looking a little sheepish?).  So she's sporting this most attractive form of footwear and using crutches.

Not good as it will affect her dancing for another month or two.  But for all bad things, a good thing happens and yesterday was her birthday - her 15th Birthday - when did she get this old?

And her friend Max came over the house bearing a stuffed ladybug and a cup of her favorite Starbucks - Pumpkin Spice Latte - ymmm:

Aren't they cute?

See the HC on the lid of the cup?  That was his way of asking her to the Homecoming Dance.  So sweet!  He is a real sweetheart, although my heart goes into spasms thinking that she's old enough for a a boy to like her - I mean really like her!!!  He's even offered to come over and help decorate her boot as she'll still be wearing it when Homecoming happens.  Like I said - he's sweet!

I have managed to get a little bit of quilting done!  I'm still lovin' on some baskets and I managed to get 7 of them made in the past few weeks.  Working on this QAL with Siobhan has been so much fun.  She keeps me excited about working on these babies!  She's beating the pants off me though - I think 55 to my 30, but I'll catch up.  And some progress is good progress, right (excuse those threads you see - LOL)?

But there are more baskets waiting in the wings - about 60 templates pressed on fabric:

And more fabric waiting for some template love:

Did I mention that I love these little baskets?

And finally late last week I had room to breathe and I had missed sewing so much, so I took the bull by the horns determined to get the Cotton Club quilt knocked off the list of things to do.  I managed to get five blocks finished:

Which now only leaves two more blocks - Woo Hoo!!

So there's my month of September for you.  Not a lot accomplished, but October is looking really, really good!!

One last thing that has taken up some of my time this month was continuing to track my genealogy.  The large document that I found was a wealth of information and a lot of the month of September was spent building my family tree.  And a lot of Google Translator as a good portion of the front end of the document has events and information all in French.  Time consuming and I'm still working on the translating.  I finally managed to get the tree finished up at least as far as the document goes.  Mundia, which is the site I'm using to build the tree - tends to give you a lot of hints towards other things - you can see the little leaves at the top corners of each person.  So now it's a matter of checking out all the hints and start digging.  Because my family was so involved in things that happened in Detroit during the 1700's I've found that there are a lot of books that record a lot of their lives and so I need to start trying to track those down.

One funny story that I did find in the document (and there are a lot of stories pulled from newspapers and documents from the day) was that one of the houses of a relative started on fire and the woman in the house ran out in hysterics and on the way out the front door grabbed a gun that was sitting on a table.  Well, she ran out of the house screaming and waving the gun around, got so hysterical that when she got outside and her neighbor came to see what all the uproar was about,  my relation pulled the trigger and shot the neighbor dead!  Not good!!  I've managed to track my family down 28 generations.  I'm the 28th.  Now I'm in the process of tracking up from the first person that appeared and see how much further I can go back.  It's a lot of work, but so exciting!!

So that was my month of September.  Thank you for the comments you left on my last blog post, and I've tried to do a good job of keeping up with everyone (for once) and have really enjoyed seeing what everyone is working on!  I really missed that during the summer!   Take care and stitch a lot!!

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

It's My Blogoversary, Some Stitching and Tree Climbing

Hi Dear Friends.  It looks like I slid off the blogging wagon again for the past couple weeks, but I'm going to do better from this point out.  Promise.  The past couple weeks (or three) have been filled with getting DS back up to college, DD registered for school and all the related shopping (you know how those teenage girls love to shop), and my DH's beloved Aunt passed away after a long battle with Alzheimers.  So we've had a lot going on the past couple weeks.

With that said, it's my 4th Blogoversary today!!  I can't believe I've been blogging (sometimes rather sporadically) for four years.  I've met so many wonderful people, some in person, and I truly love the friendships that I have made through this blog.  I hope to blog for another four years and continue the friendships that have really grown close to my heart.  Blogging has also brought me an unexpected surprise - but I'll get to that a little later.  And yes, I'll have a giveaway.  I'm not sure when - soon - once I get the mayhem cleared up from a very busy summer!!

So what have I been doing the past few weeks besides the above?  Well, I've gotten a little more stitched on Elizabeth Clayton, although the progress has been slow.  I love working on her with the NPI's and think I'll have to use more silks in the future:

I had hoped to be finished with the entire side, but that didn't happen.

I managed to get a few more basket blocks finished with my QAL with Siobhan - 8 as a matter of fact.  They are the perfect thing to carry around with me.

And here are all the baskets that I've finished so far:

23 blocks total with more waiting in the wings!  I don't want to think of how many more I have to sew!!

So there you have it - not too much really.  But wait - there's more!!  I seem to have gotten myself into another mess with some stitching.  I've joined a SAL with Terri, Marsha, and Sandra.  Although I should call her Cousin Sandra, but I'll get to that in a minute.  The four of us are going to be working on Susanna Singleton by the Scarlett Letter:

This will be a lot of fun.  Although, truth be told, I totally stink at SALs.  We're all doing it over a two year schedule and will post every three months, so maybe there will be hope for me.  I've had this in my stash forever, so it will be fun to finally work on her.  I don't know where I'm going to find the time, but I'll give it the ole college try. (Edited to add:  It seems that since Terri's and Sandra's posts - we've acquired three more SAL girls - GabiSuzanne, and Margaret!  Woo Hoo!!)  This is going to be so much fun!!

I also noticed that Sandra recently posted some beautiful WIPs that she has going on, so you need to look at her most recent post.  Since I'm so bad at SALs, I hang my head in shame because the two of us were going to work on Marquoir de Justine together.  Take a look at her picture on her blog of her Justine and then look at my progress:

Shameful, I know.  But it's the linen - I'm not loving the linen, so I'm going to have to start it over.  This is also not a very good picture of it.  It doesn't photograph well!  But after seeing Sandra's beauty, I know that I have to stitch it with new linen!

Now, here comes the Cousin part with Sandra and I and what I meant about Tree Climbing in my post title.  That referred to Family Tree Climbing.  And if you get bored with reading family stuff, then skip to the bottom!!  But I'll try to make it as brief as possible.

When my husband's aunt died, I stood in the cemetery and started thinking about all the people and what their lives were like.  Sometimes we know so little about our relatives.  I've even thought about people and their lives when I've gone into an antique store and made a purchase - who owned what I was buying and what were they like.  Well, I decided to trace my roots with encouragement from Sandra.

Here's some of my immediate family - on the left my Great Grandmother, in the middle my Grandfather in his WWI uniform, and my Grandmother, and to the right is my Great Grandmother when she was small.  In the middle is my father when he was little.  I have a ton of pictures of relatives, but now I'll have some history.  Sandra has encouraged me time and time again to trace my roots and I started with my father's side of the family - actually his mother's side of the family - the one in the middle picture.  And what a mother lode I found.

I found out that my Great-Great-Great Grandfather married a woman named Victorie Pelletier (which makes me think of Anne Pelletier who charted Marquoir de Justine - are we related)?   Victorie's father was Charles Stanislaus Dagneau de Quindre dit Fortenay.  Victorie's mother was a Shawnee Indian.  His second wife (or 1st - there is no proof he married the Shawnee woman) was Marie Catherine Chene.  Both Dequindre and Chene are well known street names in Detroit.  And it appears that good ole Charles had Indian blood in him too (denoted by the use of Fortenay in his name).  Oh this is getting good - the black sheep in the family type of thing - skeletons in the closet.  Well, it seems that Charles and his family were very prominent and instrumental in the history of Detroit in the 1700's.  Are you bored yet?

If not, there's more.  In some articles I came across it was noted that Charles' family (who came from Quebec and France) was key in surrendering  Detroit to the British in 1760 (although one article says it was his uncle - Francois Marie Picote and another article said it was Charles - more investigation is needed, but since the records are in Detroit, I should be able to clear up that mystery). And that Charles was instrumental in the capture of Daniel Boone in Blue Lick, Kentucky.  Okay, this is cool.  But then I came across documents - one after the other and then the mother lode - a 294 page document about the Dagneaux/DeQuindre family beginning with a Henry D'Agneaux (I shortened the name) in 1068!!!  Thank goodness for the internet.  My direct family started showing up down the line at item 95 and at item 138 appears my GGG Grandmother and Grandfather, and further down the list there are more relatives.   I'm thrilled and some documents also tell me where they are buried in Detroit and Windsor.

In my excitement, I emailed the document to Sandra - not to read - heaven forbid, but just to see what I came across.  She glanced through a little of it and discovered another name, DeGrey, on the list that she thought I should investigate further.  A quick search on that name takes me back to some Queen in Denmark in the 600's (still investigating that one also).  But along the line what else do we find - that we're both related to William the Conqueror and that Sandra's line comes up and converges and she is my Cousin!!  To quote Sandra:

  "We are related to William the Conq. through his Grandfather Fulbert of Falaise and William's Uncle and Fulbert's Son Reynar.  William's Mother was the Daughter of one and the Sister of the other.  So that makes William our Cousin many many many times removed.  To make things easier, you could say that we all share the same Grandparents".

So there you have it.  How cool is that?

So, not only has blogging brought me so many great and new friends, it's also brought me in contact with someone who helped me find my past and is also related.  And who knows, a lot of us are probably related somewhere done the line.  I'm sure that we've all heard the term ,"We're all related"!

Now, what I'd love to do is find a sampler that one of my relatives stitched!  There are a lot of names in that big document.  Maybe I'll find one.  Wouldn't that be great??

If you're still reading this after the brief history of my family and you haven't bolted for the next blog out of boredom, thank you for following my blog, thank you for being a friend, and I hope that our relationships continue for years to come!!!  And I hope that we all share another four years of inspiration!!