Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Sew overwhelmed!

Just another chaotic day here at DJ's digs...I'm sitting here at my computer when I should be in  my stitching place slaving away...right???  LOL!!

Just in the past week, I've undertaken a few new projects.  Some I asked for, some I did not, and some I just wanted to because I wanted to!!  But in the end, I feel like a hamster on a wheel.  Spinning like crazy but not getting anywhere fast.

Well, poor Mom will have to wait on her afghan...but mostly due to her own fault.  Why, you ask?  Because she decided to take an office in her organization where she will have a staff, and she wants homemade gifts for them for Christmas.  She THINKS I'm good at crocheting cross bookmarks and thought that would be a dandy gift.  Yay me...LOL!!  So...I'm making 12 bookmarks.  The first one she didn't like...

So...on to the next...wrong colors...

Hopefully SOME of these will work for her...

I guess this little beauty will have to wait a while longer.  Maybe I'll get it to her before summer...wish us both luck!  LOL!!

The group I belonged to that did a round robin last year...you know the one I haven't finished yet?  This one...

has decided to do another one.  I have decided on a chart from a magazine called Berries, Birds and Blooms by Blue Ribbon Designs... here is my start so far.  I'm hung up on trying to decide if I will personalize it with the title of the group again...decisions, decisions.  I suppose I can wait until it gets back to me...but...I'm afraid it will end up unfinished like the last one...

In trying to decide on a project for the above group, I stumbled across this little beauty.  I debated on using this as the round robin, but since the fabric I had chosen was 40 count, and when I started stitching it was a challenge for me, I decided it wasn't such a good choice for this years project.  So...here is the beginning, I wonder if I will ever finish it....but honestly...I LOVE working on this one!  This is the Weathervane, by Little House Needleworks.  For now it will have to remain on the back burner...*sigh*

Last, but not least, is my little plug for October, and Breast Cancer Awareness month.  In the past few months a dear friend, the mother of a young man at church, the friend of a lady at church and the friend's sister have all been diagnosed with breast cancer.  Some were found with routine mammograms (as was mine), and some found through other means.  It's so important to have your screening done!!  Or at the very least, do your monthly breast exams.  You may not realize it, or even feel like it, but those around you, your friends, coworkers and loved ones depend on you.  So....I found this amazing pattern on the internet, and decided to make something.  It will be for one of those mentioned above, and my guess is I'll be making quite a few (unfortunately).  But the most awesome news is that being diagnosed today means there is so much more hope and advanced treatments than when I was diagnosed 4 years ago that there is hope that you will be cured.  So please...get checked annually.  Those who love you will thank you!!  Here is my progress on this project...

I was invited by my cousin last week to get together to make some pillows for the breast cancer patients at Johns Hopkins Hospital.  I enlisted the help of the lovely Miss M and her husband, we were joined by my husband and friends of my cousin to stuff and sew 98 lovely pillows.  My prayer is that they will find a cure fast so we don't have to make any more of these pillows soon!  Thanks again for the invite, Cuz, and I hope we can see one another soon!

Today is my Dad's birthday.  It's been more than 5 years now since he passed.  There are times my heart aches at his passing, I miss him so much.  I love that his birthday is in the fall, as it has always been my favorite time of year, so even though it is so sad that I miss him, I can't help feeling warm and wistful on his birthday.  Love and miss you, Dad.  Happy Birthday!

Friday, October 3, 2014

And Sew it Begins...

Well, it didn't take me long to get behind in all those SAL's I am working on!  LOL!!  There are new pages for all three of them that I haven't had time to stitch on yet...but hopefully next week will be a little better?!

I say that tongue in cheek as I'm desperately trying to finish up an afghan I'm making for my Mom before snow hits the Northeast!  I have all the blocks made now, I'm just beginning to sew it together.  This may take more time than I imagined!!  I'm averaging 4 hours to make one strip of 25 blocks.  There are 20 strips in the afghan...so I can only  make about one strip a day...it seems very laborious!!  Here's my progress so far...

I can't remember when the last time was I talked about the Round Robin I was doing with a few other women.  My piece finally came home about a month or so ago.  I haven't had time to pick it up until the other day I decided to work on it a little bit.  I would like to finish it before the end of the year...wish me luck!  Here's where I am so far.  I've been working on the middle square...

Last, but not least, I have to talk about  my beloved Orioles for a wee bit!!  I missed a lot of the games my guys had tickets for this year.  I've been sick for a lot of them for some reason or other.  I did make it to the first post season game last night.  What a game!!  I can't remember when there has been that much excitement, or orange in the stands!!  They really mopped the floor with the Tigers, and my favorite sign that I saw in the stands was the Oriole Bird calling "Here Kitty Kitty Kitty" with a tiger tail hanging out of his mouth!  LOL!!  Anyway, here is how my husband dresses for the game...

The great thing is this was an exciting game...one of the best I've ever been to.  And not only did they win last night....but they came from behind and won today too!!  Let's go O's!!

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Gaining Momentum

Whew!  So here I am, finally in an upright position!  Still coughing, but not like before, this sure has been hard to shake!

A couple of days ago my brain finally kicked in so I was able to concentrate a little and get some stitching done.  I was way behind in a few SALs so I stitched like mad on Au Point du Croix and managed to catch up.  Since I'm on a scroll frame with this piece, you can only see the last few pieces.  I really like this one!!

Just as soon as I finished stitching up parts 9 and 10 (which you can see here) they published part 11.  I guess that can wait until tomorrow...I really wanted to stitch on something different!!  Here is Marquoir Francoise...

Part 9 of the SAL Maryse is having came out a couple of days before I left for Alaska, so I wasn't able to get it stitched before I left.  It took an entire day (well a day with a fuzzy brain from the flu I had) but I was able to catch up with this one too!  (Just a week before the next part comes out...suddenly I feel like I'm on a treadmill!!  LOL)

I did a little rejoicing when I finished these up last night knowing that today I could work on whatever I wanted.  So this morning I thought for a bit, and pulled out one of those crazies from a few years ago...the Christmas Quaker Bellpull from Wienhenberg.  I love this pattern, but because it's stitched over one, it is one of those patterns I can only handle in small doses.  I'm going to start a weekly rotation and hope to make a concerted effort to try and finish before Christmas 2015.  I need to make some goals on it...

After a little while working on that I pulled out something I haven't worked on for a little while, Royal Garden.  I was determined to finish these motifs that look like curly Qs.  In order to finish with one length of thread I had to start with 90 inches.  I can tell you my arm is tired from pulling such a long thread through each time!!  I finished up 6 of them today!!    The next section I will be working with satin thread...this could be challenging as it has a mind of it's own.  Wish me luck!!  Here's my progress so far...

I still have some time left over tonight so I think I'll do a little crocheting.  I really want to finish an afghan for my Mom before the winter is over.  I have close to 200 squares left to make but I've already made more than that, so if I really concentrate I could probably get them done in a few days.  So....off to get some squares done.

Thanks for stopping by!  I hope the predictions of a harsh winter don't have you too discouraged.  All I can think is that sometimes those hard winters lead to getting a lot of crafts done, so stock up on supplies and hot cocoa and get ready to enjoy creating things with your hands!  Happy Stitching!

Monday, September 15, 2014

Klondike Fever

Hi folks!

This has been an incredible year.  It just seems like the hits keep on coming!  Some good....some not so good....and some just plain fabulous!!

My husband and I celebrated our 30th wedding anniversary back in August.  (At first posting I had written 39th anniversary, but it is only our 30th...sorry for the confusion!!)  We knew it was a bad time to get away, so we thought long and hard and decided we wanted to take a cruise to Alaska in September.  We didn't tell too many people, first because our son would be home alone and because we knew of others who had taken a cruise to the same place, and we wanted to make our trip our own.  So...then we got terribly busy, too busy to really plan, or rest, or contemplate our navels...and so we didn't have much time to make up our minds what we wanted to do or see.  So, we had to wing it, but in that we had the ability to be spontaneous, and though that is FAR outside my comfort zone, it really worked for us this trip.  It was exhilarating, it was relaxing, it was invigorating, it was exhausting all at the same time!  We came back refreshed, and ready to tackle another 30 years on the road to wedded bliss.  LOL!!

Everywhere we went, they told us it was the first nice day in ages.  We saw that it had rained overnight a couple of times, but it never rained on us directly.  The sun was out most of the time, but cloudy when it was important to be cloudy.  The Naturalist on board the ship told us that it was best to view the glacier on cloudy days as that is when you see the lovely blue tints.  Seriously, there wasn't a day that went by that I didn't say WOW at least 10 times at the amazing scenery we saw.

We saw all kinds of animal life, whales, seals, eagles, ravens, sea otters, deer, salmon (this is the time of year that they migrate back to where they were hatched to spawn) but no bears or moose.....or northern lights (really a bummer!!) BUT...We saw other fabulous sights so I'm not complaining, and that will give us a reason to go back another time!!

I did get to visit a cross stitch shop (though it was really in a quilt store) and picked up a couple of patterns I hope to stitch to commemorate our trip.

I did NOT get any stitching done to speak of.  I maybe stitched two sides of a block I hope to make for a Christmas ornament, but not even enough to show you my progress here.

I DID get to meet someone who stitched on my round robin!  My new pal Sally from Friendly Stitcher's yahoo group made a trip to Seattle with her hubby to meet me and  my hubby and we had lunch together.  We had a lovely time and I hope we can meet up again another time!!  Turns out we had quite a few things in common, so it was a lot of fun to sit and talk at lunch (which was yummy from the Pink Door in Seattle!!).

I found the most amazing nativity to add to my collection....isn't this the bomb??

So without further ado, here are a few of my favorite sights from our trip...

Mt. Rainier

Chilhuly Glass Museum

The Space Needle...it was a beautiful day to see Seattle from the observation deck!
 Johns Hopkins Glacier in Glacier Bay National Park

 Mendenhall Glacier in Juneau

 The salmon run in Ketchekan

 Marsha made a new friend...a "Good Time Girl" in Skagway, and this stores facade is made of drift wood....so neat!

The wild life was pretty amazing!

 And the full moon made quite an entrance one night!

All in all we had an amazing time....and I hope we get the opportunity to go back another time, and this time spend a little more time on land.  Thanks for visiting, I hope to actually get some stitching the next time I update my blog!