Tuesday, December 15, 2015

December Gifted Gorgeousness

Well, here it is December...Whew what a wild ride the past 6 weeks have been!!  I don't have much to show you, and I fell off my scheduled stitching band wagon...but oh well, as my Mom always said, "That's the way the mop flops"!

Gifted Gorgeousness

I THINK this is the last month for the Gifted Gorgeousness SAL I was participating in.  I have REALLY enjoyed this SAL.  Not only because I got to search and stitch a lot of patterns I was gifted with, but because it also made me think more about gifting others with my stitching.  Even if Jo doesn't do this again next year, I just might continue on my own.  I like the idea of searching patterns and making something for other people.  Just so you know, here are the rules...

And here is where folks are posting what they've been stitching for this SAL...

So...Where do I begin?  Let's see, I made another square for Mouse's Birthday quilt.  She asked me to stitch a purple butterfly, in honor of her Dad.  So...I took part of a larger pattern, changed the color of one of the butterflies and stitched this...here it is before...

BUT...it just didn't look quite right SO...I Fretted, Fudged, and Finaggled until I added a little bit to make it fit into a square a little bit better... and from her reaction, I think I got it just about right!  It will be in the mail to you soon, Mouse!!

In case you didn't know, I have been helping my Mom out at her house in NY...nearly 500 miles from my home.  She had surgery on her leg and needed quite a bit of care.  I'm very fortunate I had the time to spend with her, and that my husband is so understanding and supportive of me and my Mom.  She is doing much better, and though she still can't drive, she is able to take care of her daily needs so I felt comfortable coming home.  Over the course of 6 weeks, I drove to NY twice (2,000 miles), and to Burlington, Vermont 4 times from her home in NY (another 2,000 miles).  Yes, I've spent a lot of time in my van...so not much time for stitching, and not much room to take large projects...so all I was able to accomplish were two ornaments, so here they are...

This one is a Shepherd's Bush from a Christmas issue of JCS a few years ago...don't let the frame fool you, it was one I had hanging around from a sale I stumbled across.

This one is a Brittercup design from a JCS Christmas issue a few years ago as well.

I also worked a wee bit on the hummingbird pattern I was making for my Mom.  NO it's not upside down, anyone that knows me, knows I always work from the bottom up...so this is the bottom and the objects just appear to be flying upside down...LOL!!

One last little thing, I have stitched this Santa a couple of times, and always placed him in this little frame.  I gave two away already, but love how it looks so much, I made this for me and I'm hanging it on my tree this year!

I feel a little guilty as I haven't had time to make anyone an ornament this year.  I've made several but haven't finished any into ornaments but these three, and I made these for myself.  If I hadn't been driving like a mad woman for the past 6 weeks, I would have been a wee bit more organized.  So...there you have it.  I kind of fizzled out at the end, but at least I have a wee bit to show you for the Gifted Gorgeousness SAL.

Thank you again, Jo, for organizing this SAL.  I enjoyed every second of it, I only wish I had more time over the past month to stitch more!  Unless I can get all my shopping, wrapping and partying done in record time, I probably won't post until Christmas...or even the New Year.  So...if I'm not back here beforehand, I wish all of you a very Merry Christmas, and many rich and wonderful blessings in the coming New Year!

I just want to add a little bit here...and if you are of the type that doesn't like to read personal stuff, you shouldn't read this next bit.  I just feel like writing it here as a reminder to live life to the fullest, no matter what the circumstances.  I was getting my list ready to send out Christmas cards (gee I'm really late this year!!  sorry folks!!) and ran across a person I hadn't heard from in a few years.  I wasn't sure the address was correct, so I looked her up on the internet (where I find you can run, but you can't hide...scary, huh?) and found her new address and a phone number.  I wanted to make sure it was her, so I gave her a call....and found out that after 15 years in remission, her breast cancer had returned.  She is a fellow stitcher, in fact she taught me hardanger many years ago, and owned a shop for quite a while.  It was wonderful reconnecting with her...but bitter sweet.  Adversity changes people, some for the good, others not so much.  I try to always look for the silver lining, it's just how I operate.  I can't live without hope, so search for it no matter what the circumstances.  I'm heartbroken to find she has lost her sparkle.  If you are of the praying kind,  please offer prayers for the lovely, talented, kind-hearted Ms. C...and all the others I know battling the cruel and destructive cancer beast.  I hate that it robs people of loved ones, but more than that, it robs people of their lively spirit.  You are in my thoughts and prayers, Ms. C!!

Sunday, November 15, 2015

Prayers for Paris

It is with a heavy heart I write this post.  I've been thinking about what I wanted to say for a few days.  I like my blog to be about happy things, about creativity and the fun I have with my guys.  But I also want to record events that touch me, and so I'm going to write about Paris, and my reaction to the horror that has happened there.

Many of you know my husband was in the military and he was stationed in Germany when the events of September 11, 2001 happened.  Someone called me (it was the middle of the day there) and told me the US was under attack.  I turned on my TV in time to see the second tower hit.  I couldn't not watch, just as I couldn't not watch when they showed pictures of the chaos in Paris. My thoughts immediately went to how I felt that day, the fear and uncertainty, wondering how people could do something so horrendous in the name of "god".  I don't understand it, I will never understand it.  But I do know that the only thing I can do at times like this is pray to God and ask Him to help the people of France, to guide the leaders in what they must do next, to relieve suffering both physically and mentally, and to fill me with compassion for those affected by this tragedy.  Not just the victims and their families, but also for those who committed these violent acts.  I do not hate Muslims, nor terrorists, nor anyone else who doesn't share the beliefs I hold dear, but I don't condone what they have done either.  We are called to love them, and so I shall with God's help.  And so to the people of France I send my heartfelt condolences, and offer fervent prayers for your safety, for healing, and for hope and peace.

November Gifted Gorgeousness...

Wow...time is flying by so fast I sincerely can't keep up with it all.  I haven't stitched much this month, I've been away in Northern NY staying with my Mom for a few weeks, made a mad dash home to Maryland for a week, and will be headed back soon.  Mom has been having issues with her leg and will be having surgery soon but there is a lot to do to get her house ready for this, making pathways a little wider to accommodate a wheel chair and things like that.  So...little time for stitching...breathing is about all I can handle at the moment!  LOL

So....what do I have for the Gifted Gorgeousness SAL this month?  Hm...well I stitched a few things for others, and had something stitched for me.  If you want to know what this SAL is all about, you can find information about it here.

If you want to see what others have posted this month, you can see their posts here.

I did partake in a Needle book exchange and my partner finally received hers, so I can show you both of ours here.  Here is what I stitched for her...

And this is what I received.  I was truly spoiled, and feel awful that I didn't include more in her package.  Sorry Denise, you got the short end of the stick (I was making a mad dash to get hers in the mail before I left for my Mom's house and didn't really have time to think about what I should include).  I really love my Needle book, and will be putting it to good use, I can assure you!  Thank you so much!!  (I forgot to include the little tin that came with it...and Denise must know I'm a box-a-holic...haha.)

Sorry, Mouse, I'm going to post the pictures of what I'm sending you for your quilt.  I stitched this little mouse to put in a shaker pin cushion.  It didn't fit...even though it was stitched on 36 count over two, it was just a tad too big, and since I promised I would stitch a square for your birthday quilt, hopefully this will work.  

I also stitched this for your quilt...even though it's not your favorite flowers, or a purple butterfly, I thought it would make a pretty addition to your quilt.  I hope you like it...and it's in the mail, so should get to you soon!  Happy Early Birthday!!  

I didn't get to stitch on my November picture so not even the beginning of a hint of anything on that.  I'm feeling really bad, my OCD about finishing things on time is kicking in.  Well...I still have a couple of weeks, but given my recent track record, I don't think I'll get it done.  I'll let you know on my next update.  But...who knows when that will be?  Hopefully I'll be back in time for the next gifted gorgeousness.

This will be the first year I didn't participate in the Christmas ornament exchange since I joined the group.  I'm a little bummed about that.  I always enjoy getting something new to hang on the tree.  But though I have a few ornaments stitched (and here is one I finished in NY...this really was all I had time to stitch there!!) they aren't finished into ornaments.  Oh well, there's always next year!!  

Off to pack my bags...I'll be headed north in the next few days (I had planned to leave tomorrow, but headaches are preventing me from getting myself packed...please let the weather stay clear for another 3 weeks....I'm a snow weenie and haven't had practice in quite a few years...I'm not ready to brave the great white north just yet!!)

Friday, October 16, 2015

Good Intentions and Gifted Gorgeousness...

Well, I had good intentions for trying to get stuff done this past month....and then life happened.  The story of my life!  LOL!!  As always I was thrown a curve ball.  BUT!!  The good news is that I have accomplished some stitching...so where do I start?

It's been a bit crazy here lately (does any of this sound familiar?)...and I don't have much to show for the Gifted Gorgeousness (though I think I have a bit more than last month...maybe...).  BUT...if you are interested in the rules, you can find them here.  If you are interested in finding what people have been posting, you can find them here.  Thank you again, Jo for hosting this!!

So...here's the scoop....I went to Ocean City with a few of my friends for a stitch weekend.  We stitched, we laughed, we pranked, we shopped, we ATE (our host made the most amazing breakfasts every morning!!), and we stitched some more.  At the end our host brought out this pattern...too cute for words...and I asked if I could stitch it for her.  So...here is the finished project!  Thanks again, Ms. W for a great weekend!!  Here is Beach Combin', but I prefer to call it "Bottoms Up!"

I'm still working on the monthly series from Cottage Garden Samplings.  I finally finished September's Morning Glory

And October's Marigold.

I am loving this series, and have everything gathered to start November!  YAY!!

I finished off the Needle Book I was making for an exchange with Friendly Stitchers and though it is in the mail somewhere on it's way to Saudi Arabia (wow...quite a journey for  my little stitching) she hasn't received it yet.  So....I'll just show you the back.  After she has received it I'll show the rest.  I hope she likes it, it was my first attempt.

I am making something for a friend of mine, I haven't finished assembling it yet...but the stitching is done.  I REALLY want to show you a piece of it...LOL...so here you go.  I don't know when I'll get it done, or if I'll get it to her by Christmas, but at least she knows I'm thinking of her...

I stitched on a Round Robin that just started up...Here is my contribution to Joyeax Noel for Gillie.


And last but not least, is something I've started for my Mom.  I'll be traveling to NY next week for an extended period of time.  I don't know when I'll be online again as she doesn't have internet service.  She is having surgery on the 26th so if you would pray for her I would appreciate it very much!  I thought I would work on this while I'm there so she can see how it all comes together.  This is a kit from Dimensions....here is what it should look like...

and here is what I have done so far.

It's been so busy here....we went to the season home opener for the Capitols hockey team...

Stayed up late to watch the eclipse...

Went to the second to last Orioles game of the season...where they beat the Yankees!!

And I know there are other things thrown in there I just can't remember it all.  LOL  But... 

I do want to remind you that it is October....the month where I remind you all to get your annual check up and to do self exams once a month.  Early detection is so important!!!  I have two ladies who I am praying for at the moment who have stage IV Breast Cancer.  They are both brave warriors, but it hasn't been easy on either of them.  PLEASE get your check ups .... if not for yourself, do it for the ones who love you!!  Sorry I can't host a give away this year, but hopefully next year I'll be back to my regular routine!  Guess that's all for today.  Happy Stitching!!



Thursday, September 17, 2015

September Gifted Gorgeousness and more...

Well....I don't have much to show for all the time that has passed...but here goes!

It's been a bit crazy here lately...and I don't have much to show for the Gifted Gorgeousness.  BUT...if you are interested in the rules, you can find them here.  If you are interested in finding what people have been posting, you can find them here.  Thank you again, Jo for hosting this!!

So, this month I finished stitching Hannah's Brownstone.  This was a kit my husband gave me for my Birthday.  He is my biggest supporter of my needlework obsession.  Where would I be without him?

I started on September's Morning Glory by Cottage Garden Samplings.  I haven't stitched very far....but hope to finish it up before the month is over.  These were loaned to me by my partner in stitching crime, Astrid.  It is stitched on 32 ct. over one thread.

I signed up to stitch a needlebook for a yahoo group I'm a member of.  I finished stitching it, but since it's for an exchange, I can't show it all to you just yet.  Here is a sneak peak, and the  materials I plan to use to finish it.  Hopefully I will show you the finished product in a month or so after she has received it.


And that's it for the Gifted Gorgeousness this  month.  Hopefully I'll have more to show next month.

I have been working on Aurora Cabin.  This project has it's moments....let me tell you!!  Sometimes I work on it like gangbusters, and then sometimes it sits taunting me from it's perch near my stitching nest.  I sooooo want to finish it before the year is over.  Keep your fingers crossed!!  I'm finished cross stitching the cabin, now I have to outline...my FAVORITE job...NOT!!  LOL

I spent the past weekend at a little place in Ocean City.  A friend has a condo there and we were invited to stay for three nights.  What a blast!!  These ladies are always so much fun to spend time with.  I would LOVE to go into details, but what happens in Ocean City, stays in Ocean City!!  Of course we took a little trip to Salty Yarns and all these things just fell into my basket.  Oooops...so much for stitching from stash.

A friend from the "retreat" gave me two books I've been looking for.  Inside the first volume is a pattern for a Needlework Casket.  I've decided I MUST make this for myself.  I have the casket, I recently acquired, and am chomping at the bit to get started.  I'm waiting for a "yard sale" they have annually at my LNS when I can get all the fabric I need.  I'll keep you posted on my progress once I get started.  I have wanted to make this for years....my wish finally came true.  I can't tell you how thrilled I am!!

We've had some excitement around a bit lately.  We took a trip into DC over the holiday weekend and visited Ford's Theater and saw the box where Lincoln sat...

and the National Postal Museum.  (You  may not know that I collect postage stamps...and inherited my albums from my Grandmother and Uncle.  It was exciting to hear the stories of the stamps and learn more about how they are tagged and other postal history.)

We attended a baseball game with Marsha, and had dinner at Dempsey's beforehand.  It's a fun brew pub to visit!  Even better was the shut out and win for the Orioles!!

At the ball park, Ben (our son) picked up a bottle of coke.  We love how they put the names on them, but this one said Quarterback.  He posted it on facebook with the tag.... Must be sharing with Tom Brady because it's flat #deflategate.  LOL That's my son...never a dull moment with my guys!

 Til next time....happy stitching!

Saturday, August 15, 2015

August Gifted Gorgeousness

What???  A month has gone by already?  I swear the older I get the faster time goes!!  It's been a busy time for me though.  Let's see, what HAVE I been up to?

I have a lot to share for the Gifted Gorgeousness SAL this month.  I've been busy making things for other people!!  If you would like to know more about this SAL, or visit other people taking part in this, please visit this page for all the rules.  Or if you want to see what is happening this month, please visit this page.  Thanks again Jo who can't think of a clever nickname.  I've been enjoying finding things to stitch for this SAL!

I'll start with the second afghan I made for DH's Nephew and his wife.  They had a baby boy a week or two after DH's Niece.  His brother and his wife were doubly blessed with two Grandchildren in such a short time!

I was in an exchange with Friendly Stitchers Yahoo group and we had a Christmas in July exchange.  I made her two ornaments because I was afraid the first one I made wasn't up to par.  It was the first time I had made my own cording and since I had no idea what I was doing I was afraid it didn't look quite right.  

The blue ornament was a "make up" and so much fun to stitch and finish!!  

And this was the ornament she sent me, along with some threads she hand dyed herself to stitch this piece, and fabric, a coin purse, some pens and highlighters.  I truly was spoiled!!  Isn't this a beauty?  Thank you so very  much Ms. R!

Another month bites the dust in the Cottage Garden Samplings.  Here is August's Poppy.

I have a friend who love the Minions.  Her Birthday was a little bit ago, so I made this for her.  It's stitched on 32 count over one so it would fit in the little pocket watch.   I love this lady so very much, and she is in the battle of her life with breast cancer.  I hope it made her smile.  Happy Birthday, Ms P!

I got my little Eskimos in a frame and gave it to my husband for our Anniversary last week.  Hard to believe we've been married 31 years!  The first thing out of his mouth was...this reminds me of the cruise we took for our Anniversary last year.  Yep...that was the point, Honey!  LOL

I finished a Mill Hill Kit that my husband gave me for Christmas.  I stitched it on fabric instead of perforated paper, I hope to make these into a stand up once I finish all the kits in the nativity series!  

I started a kit my husband gave me for my Birthday last year (can you tell he's a great supporter of my cross stitch?).  I fell in love with this when it came out at the market last year and I guess he heard me.  Here is my start on Hannah's Brownstone from The Scarlett House.  I stitched it on World Cross Stitch Day....what did you stitch on August 14th?

I also received a lovely gift from a friend.  A few months back I stitched a Gingerbread man for a friend.  As a surprise and a thank you, she sent a needle book that she stitched and finished.  Most people who know me, know I love violets.  I just love the design and will be using this to hold needles when I'm traveling!  Isn't it sweet?  Thank you so ver much, Ms. D!

Whew, I think that's the end of the Gifted Gorgeousness portion!  Told you I've been busy!!

I stitched up this little cross....a kit I found a little bit ago.  I love to see the Dogwood trees in bloom in the spring and always loved the legend.  I can't see a Dogwood bloom without thinking of the Crucifixion.  

Here is the legend:

At the time of Crucifixion the dogwood had been the size of the oak and other forest trees. So firm and strong was the tree that it was chosen as the timber for the cross. To be used thus for such a cruel purpose greatly distressed the tree, and Jesus nailed upon it, sensed this.
In His gentle pity for all sorrow and suffering Jesus said to the tree:
" Because of your regret and pity for My suffering, never again shall the dogwood tree grow large enough to be used as a cross. Henceforth it shall be slender and bent and twisted and its blossoms shall be in the form of a cross--two long and two short petals. And in the center of the outer edge of each petal there will be nail prints, brown with rust and stained with red, and in the center of the flower will be a crown of thorns, and all who see it will remember."
The pink dogwood is said to be blushing
for shame because of the cruel purpose
which it served in the Crucifixion.
The weeping dogwood further symbolized the sorrow.
The red dogwood, called the Cherokee, bears
the color to remind us of the blood shed by our Savior.

And sadly, my Aurora Nights is coming along very slowly.  So many confetti stitches, my eyes cross if I work on it too long.  I love the way it looks though...so I'll keep plugging along!

My husband and I spend a few days away to celebrate our Anniversary.  We drove to Lancaster, Pennsylvania and went to a few performances.  The first was Oklahoma at the Dutch Apple dinner theater.  Even Marsha enjoyed the show!

We also went to see Joseph at Sight and Sound.  They always put on a fabulous show!

We ran home on Sunday to take part in the Real Life Clue organized for the youth group at our church.  My husband and I were the Professor and his wife.  Here are a few pictures of the fun we had.  My son was the murdered person.  It was a load of laughs and so much fun!! 

 As I said, my husband and I were the Professor and his wife...we were introduced to our theme music, Pomp and Circumstance.  LOL  We all had our own theme music.  And this guy laying here (pretty good color for a dead guy, huh?) walked in to the theme music to The Walking Dead...hahahaha

Last week we went to see a show in Baltimore, the Jim Gaffigan Show.  What a hoot!  Can you say...Hot Pockets?

And that...as they say....is that.  Whew!!  Now I'm off to get my room a bit organized, I swear I can't find anything I'm looking for!!  Wish me luck, and if you don't hear from me for a while, send the crew from hoarders.  I'm either buried alive under my stash, or I'm lost in the maze.  Either way I need HELP!!