Monday, March 30, 2020

Nature calls...

It's a lovely day in the neighborhood!  After the past few dreary, cloudy, dark days, it's a welcome relief to see the sun shining.  I had already told DH that I would get up today, take a shower and go for a walk with him.  It helped my resolve when I saw what a pretty day it is.  We live in a pretty subdivision that was built near a nature preserve.  It is within walking distance of our house!  So we picked up our camera and went for a walk.  




It's so pretty in the preserve no matter what time of year it is, and I guess my favorite is the fall when the leaves are changing, but it's really enjoyable in the spring when everything is coming alive.  The geese are laying their eggs, the turtles are coming out of hibernation, the bugs are coming alive so the purple martins are having a feast, and it's just a great time for a walk around the different ponds.  

We stopped nearby when a father was talking to his toddler son, pointing to the top of this tall tree.  As we walked by we could make out a nest...and then we spotted what they had been looking at.  I think we saw it flying by us later an American Woodcock flying overhead and I'm beginning to think it was that bird sunning his wings getting ready to soar for a while that day.  I couldn't get a picture of it as it soared by, but I'm sure it was the same wing we saw in the nest.





We saw so many turtles sunning themselves on various logs in the different ponds.  The signs said there were three different types that live there...painted turtles, snapping turtles, and box turtles.  The painted turtles are easy to identify, but the others have me baffled.  Can you identify them in these pictures?






The Canadian geese have taken over the area.  They are a protected bird here, and they are thriving!!  But they are beautiful, none-the-less.






We spotted a beaver den...



A little squirrel on a perch checking us out...



And lots of birds, including the only one we could get a picture of...this cardinal.


After days of sitting indoors, it was a welcome relief to get out and see the sun!  We were careful to keep our distance from others out walking, and we tend to forget that it's still safe to enjoy the great outdoors.  I hope the sun is shining wherever you are!  Maybe tomorrow I will have something stitch related to show!  In the meanwhile, be well, stay healthy, and happy stitching!!

Sunday, March 29, 2020

More Birds!

I cannot see a cardinal without thinking of my Mom.  She loved those red birds!!  And she loved to watch the birds, she would be in 7th heaven sitting here watching them out my back window.  Here are a few more who visited today.  I have to laugh at the woodpecker...he swoops down in, tries to grab the biggest seeds, then flies off before the little birds chase him away.  The cardinals only stay a few minutes too, as those goldfinches seem to rule the roost....Sorry for the craptastic photos...the windows need washing...haha



Maybe tomorrow I'll have more stitching photos...for now I'm stitching, but they are for exchanges so I can't show them just yet.  The joys of self isolation.........Happy Stitching!!

Friday, March 27, 2020

I'm afraid it's come down to this.....

I ran out of milk yesterday....and I needed something for my Cheerios...


Now before you think I've gone off the deep end...when we went quarantine shopping (trying to buy enough food for 2 weeks) I thought...milk is not going to last THAT long...so I grabbed this box...


When I ran out of milk yesterday I thought...gee I'm glad I bought the dry milk, so this morning I read the directions.  It says the best way to store it and have it still taste good is to store it in a air tight glass container.  Um...I hadn't thought of that...my Girl Scout Leader from way back would be horrified I wasn't prepared!  I looked around my kitchen and found this empty Growler size bottle of Adirondack Toboggan Company beer.  This beer is distilled in my home town!  We bought this bottle for Ben to try after he turned 21 and just kept the bottle.  Perfect!  So I made up the milk and continued with my tradition of Cheerios, coffee, and my morning Sudoko puzzle (I get a calendar with a puzzle a day page...it's my morning routine which has been SHATTERED since DH is home all day long...)  I'm hoping Big Brother isn't watching, I'm sure they'll pick me up for a drinking problem since it's the first thing I grab in the morning!  hic  LOL!!  


I hope you are coping with all life's little challenges...Happy Stitching!

Thursday, March 26, 2020

Playing Hopscotch

It must be a sign of the times...or maybe just that I seem unsettled...a little cabin fever maybe?  I can't seem to stick to one project.  Yesterday I worked on 3 different pieces.  I only have pictures of one though.  I threw caution to the wind and picked up something I could finish quickly.  I picked this up at our last trip to the beach, something for the kids to hang outside their door in their new apartment.  It's a maze in their building, and now that I have something identifiable, I can knock on their door with confidence...if I ever get over there again!  LOL!!  We are still keeping ourselves locked in at home...except for the occasional walk in the sunshine.  Hopefully today we can do that again.   Our son is supposed to stop by today to pick up a package that was delivered here for him.  We'll be good and keep our distance but it will be good to see his face again!  

Here is NeedlePrint & Play Alphabet Art P by Just Another Button Company.  This was a lot of fun to stitch and finish!  Hopefully I'll be able to get it framed for them soon!


Off to get something new started again.   This attack of startitis is keeping me running in circles.  This might be for a gift though...so I may have to keep it under wraps.  We shall see!  Stay safe and well, my stitchy friends!  Happy Stitching!

Tuesday, March 24, 2020

Stitching kindness...

Has everyone noticed the generosity of the Needlework community during this time?  I'm amazed at the lovely little free patterns being posted by almost all the designers I know!  I've been following the #bewellandstitch through the different groups online that I belong to, and if you google that hashtag, you can find even more online.  One of my favorite blackwork designers, Banu Demeril, of Seba designs, disappeared from the scene a few years ago due to trade problems in her country.  She had the prettiest blackwork designs.  I had my eye on one of them for quite some time but before I could buy it she had to take all her work down.  She just offered it for free on her facebook page.  I'm in tears here seeing all the generosity of these designers who are being so kind.  It's so refreshing to see how we are all coming together to help one another cope during this time.  It gives me hope after reading all the terrible stories of people trying to gouge prices on necessities.  I understand the need for self preservation, but cannot, for the life of me, understand how people can be so self serving and cruel during a crisis.  I'm praying daily for those to see the light, and for the safety of the rest of us.

So last night DH and I watched the movie, Midway.  I have a lot of admiration for the strength of character and valor of those men who fought so valiantly, even knowing their missions were, most likely, suicide missions.  I had the privilege of knowing so many military men, my husband, father and father-in-law included, and most of them were good men...kind, courageous, and full of integrity.  When you see what they may have seen in their days as soldiers, sailors and airmen, it makes me even more proud to call them friends.  Anyway...it was a really good movie, if you like that sort of genre.  

I worked a bit on Creation while I was watching the movie, and when the movie ended, I put my needle down, then looked to see how far I had stitched.....here is where I stopped.


When I read it, it made me laugh....I really should finish stitching the T H....it looks like it says that God created the heavens and the ear.  LOL!!!  I guess it will depend on what DH has lined up for today.  If the weather holds we will probably go for a walk.  Yesterday we saw this little guy near our neighbors steps.  He's a pretty big guy!!  And a little too early for Easter!   I think this is the culprit that has been eating my flowers...naughty Benjamin Bunny!!


I hope your quarantine is going well.  Know that you are in my thoughts and prayers.  Happy Stitching!

Monday, March 23, 2020

Bird watching...

As the weeks carry on with the quarantine we are learning new ways to entertain ourselves.  Thankfully we have Netflix,Disney +, and quite a few movies to keep us entertained.  I'm already trying to ration our food since we don't know how long we will be locked inside, but also to limit the number of times we have to go grocery shopping.  I'm also worried about gaining even more weight (and lets face it, I have an abundance in that department!  LOL)  We have walking trails through our housing area that are rarely used, so that has been an option on the nice weather days.  I've also gathered a few little "comfort" items...LOL


I think I finally impressed on DH how important it is for us to isolate ourselves, and he has been home from work for over a week now.  I'm grateful that he will continued to be paid, I know we are in a minority there so in an attempt to give back we are finding ways to help others who are not as fortunate as ourselves.  

Which brings me to our bird feeder.  We have stocked up on birdseed (many weeks ago just because we like to watch them) but have found we have a lot more feathered visitors than before.  Perhaps others have run out of birdseed...and the word is out that we have it here.  Or perhaps the birds are returning from wherever they wintered, but our feeder seems to be pretty popular right now.  I'm learning that female birds can be quite ferocious chasing those males away...LOL  Some spend way too much time at the feeder, keeping others away.  I guess people are more like animals than we realize!  LOL  



Watching people handle this quarantine ... by either ignoring the rules to self isolate, or hoarding supplies while others go without...or by not being empathetic to people who are going through a tough time and belittling their plight...or ignoring those in need.  Sometimes a word of kindness goes a lot farther than...get over yourselves your problem is trivial right now.  Emotional needs are as important as physical needs right now...so try a little kindness.  If you are able, check in on those less fortunate and provide a little relief for them too as long as you do it safely.  It's good for your soul!

I have to cheer on those who try to make life a little sweeter, like the stitching community offering free charts or discounts on their stock.  There are lots of lovely patterns being offered, just follow the #Bewellandstitch to find them!  

I'm also noticing the way leaders are handling the situation.  I applaud the Governor of our state.  I think he has the right idea, instead of pointing fingers or relying on federal aid, he is taking steps to gather the medical equipment we need, offering incentives for small businesses to help provide those needs, and monetary incentives to keep our economy from tanking.  Our federal government could take a few lessons here!

As the days go by and we begin to settle into a routine, and we have figured out how to survive this crisis, my mind has a little more space to really get more creative.  I struggled for a while getting this project started.  There are some lovely specialty stitches in this piece, but it really takes some concentration.  While I think it was meant to be stitched a little differently, I'm happy with the way it looks.  There are a few little oops in there, but I'm going to live with them.  It shows my human side...LOL!!  This is Creation by Tempting Tangles.  I have loved this since I first started watching Deb create it.  It was a gift from DH one year.  I finally figured out how to work the padded satin stitch, and the double herringbone and though I do see a few stitches that could have been worked a little differently, I'm pleased with the outcome.



I've also done a little stitching on Blooming Bouquets- Thankful.  I love the colors in this, and love working on it.  I'm in a SAL with a friend, but am afraid to go too fast on it because I don't want her to feel pressured to keep up...so I only work on it from time to time.  I'm thrilled to say the border met up...that is always a worry!  But the main parts have met at the top so now I'm free to fill in leaves and other stitching without fear. 


I think I'm caught up on the Christmas ornaments for this month too.  Here is Three French Hens found in Stoney Creek Magazine winter 2019.  This is stitched on 28 count white evenweave over two.  I love this little collection!  


I also finished Christmas Commute from JCS Ornament Issue from 2019.  I stitched this on 40 count over two on Midnight Tryst by Fabrics by Stephanie.  I really love this color!  I may have to order some in a different stitch count!


I learned about a lady who is requesting people to send her small cross stitched flowers for a Christmas tree she creates each year for her church.  Everyone who knows me knows that violets are my favorite flower, so here is my contribution.  I think I'll wait for a bit to send it to her...just till it's safe to visit other areas like the post office!


So....what have you all been working on?  Are you able to stay calm and stitch on?  Are you well supplied with necessities?  Is there anything I can help you with?  Let me know if there is!  Stay safe, and stitch on!

Wednesday, March 18, 2020

Social Distance stitching...

It's a crazy time we are living in!!  How are you surviving the Corona Virus pandemic?  Me?  I may have to be admitted to the psych ward after I'm done social distancing.  LOL  DH has been ordered to stay home until the government says it's ok for him to go back to work.  He's over 60 amid a few other things.  Our son is jealous!  LOL  This isolation is going to kill him (if I don't do it first...haha).  The man doesn't know how to sit still...he needs a hobby!!  I'm willing to share my stash (I know...no sacrifice is too great!!) but he seriously can't sit still.  So he's organizing things around the house.  As soon as I hear him rummaging around in things, I go see what he's up to.  I swear if he moves things and puts them where HE thinks it makes sense, I'll never see those things again!!  LOL  Don't get me wrong....I love him dearly, honest I do.  But opposites attract and we are as opposite as they come!

He went for a walk yesterday so while he was gone I got a little stitching in.  Then I got a little more done after he went to bed.  Here is Birds and Blackwork SAL by Lesley Teare.  This is a 12 month SAL being sold on Creative Poppy and this is the March issue.  It's stitched on 28 count over two on white evenweave.  I am really enjoying these pieces!!


I think you'll see a slow down in the amount of stitching I get done.  LOL  I'm off to sit in on a telephonic Bible study.  We are finding creative ways to still interact with others.  Still it feels weird to not be able to go out and do things as we wish, but I'd rather be safe than sorry in these uncertain days.   I'll check in now and then and let you know how the hostage situation goes.  I have to practically sit on the man to keep him from going out where the people are.  I swear he thinks he's indestructible.  Stay safe everyone, and keep on stitching!