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Sunday, 31 January 2010

Reveal, reveal, reveal

Today is reveal day for the challenge at Stitch & Stash. This one was carried over from December as only 1 lady had managed to find time to stitch it in December. It's a complimentary design from Blue Ribbon Designs called Red Birds for Peace. A lovely design that gives you the chance to try over 1 stitching for the birds if you haven't before. An ornament finish seemed perfect for this design.

Happy Birthday Stephie ~ A small gift for a friend who comes to chat and drink tea with me. This free design seemed appropriate for her gift. I made a pocketed hanging ornament so i could add some various individual tea bags to it.

I think it's an old design from The Sampler Girl, but unfortunately it doesn't say on my print out. Could someone please tell me if not and i will amend it.

I still haven't put a stitch into my new project, in fact i haven't put a stitch into anything this week. Good guesses as to what it might be but no one guessed right. As the title here says, reveal, reveal, reveal and i have only revealed two things, i'll tell you what it is going to be (when i get started on it!) It's by Liz Turner Deihl and is called Irish Garden. Has anyone stitched one of her designs before? The chart was a gift a couple of years ago and DH bought me the fabric and specialist thread pack as a gift the following Christmas. It's come to the top of the 'to do' pile as he keeps asking about it and also i wanted to try different things this year.

Postie brought me a very thoughtful and lovely gift this week. Thank you so much Karan for the book and lovely handmade card, i hope you had a nice few days with DSis

I hope you've all had a lovely weekend, we woke to a sprinkling of snow but Mr Sunshine soon came out and its been a really nice day although very cold. February tomorrow, January seems to have flown by, although i must say it does seem a while since we were all saying Happy New Year, doesn't make sense though does it....

Tuesday, 26 January 2010

New start

The final birthday gift for this month is now finished but a no show till it's been received.

It did mean all my goals for January are completed so time for a new start. With fabric and threads finally chosen (Fabric - 28ct jubilee antique white, threads DMC 224, 315 and 3347, i decided to make all the greenery green!) Sunday afternoon My Ladys Quaker got its first stitch and a little more stitched last night. It's a lovely design to stitch and does seem to grow really quickly, i've put it away now till next week though.

I do have another new start ready to have its maiden stitch. This one i haven't mentioned before, its been in my stash for a very long time and keeps getting overlooked. Its by a designer i haven't stitched before and i haven't seen many stitched by her either. There are over 22 pages with the chart and instructions! Some of the stitches are new to me so a learning curve with this one. It's based on a garden theme and there are 5 in the series but i only have this one in my stash ... any ideas of the designer and what it might be?

Tonight is UFO night at Stitch & Stash so Mr Stick is on the prowl keeping the ladies in order and watching for their progress pics this week.

Happy Stitching

Thursday, 21 January 2010

Happy dancing

I took Lady Scarlets Journey by Just Nan with me to the stitching club last night as there wasn't much left to do and came away with only the cat charm and a few beads to add into the final band which i did this morning. It seems to have been on the frame for ages, started back in September but with Christmas stitching and knitting in between and me desperate to finish Beatrix in 2009 i guess its not that long really. It's been a super project to stitch and i have thoroughly enjoyed it. My fabric is 28ct laguna in bone and not the recommended fabric, i do prefer how the colours sit compared to the raw linen.


Chris asked on her blog if anyone wanted to SAL with her on last years free download of Le Grand Marquoir by Isabelle Haccourt-Voutier. I had already decided i would make this my 2010 long term project and have it printed off. I watched Sandra work on hers last year and wanted to make a start but with Beatrix on the frame i managed to resist. I just need to sort out fabric and threads and we can start next month. Do i want it red though? (thats the recommended colour and is nice) or would it be really lovely with all the letters in one colour and the rest in another, then again i quite like the idea of each one being a totally different colour!

Karen has also picked up her needle again and we are going to be stitching My Ladys Quaker together, she has already made a good start on hers but i'm still debating what count fabric and which colourway i want for mine.

The only project i have on a frame now is JN Ice Garden (and the HAED UFO sshhhh dont tell Mr Stick about that one though). I still have one more birthday gift to complete before the end of the month so i think i'll do that while i see what suggestions you all come up with, someone might mention something i haven't considered yet LOL

Thanks for visiting, i do appreciate your comments, thoughts and ideas

Monday, 18 January 2010

Blogoversary gift

I couldn't decide whether to stitch or knit something for my winner Gaynor, so i did both! She's let me know the parcel has arrived so i can show you what i made ...

Mrs 'Carrot Gathering Bunny' (because Gaynor and her family grow their own veg) accompanied the little scissor fob i stitched. The design is April Rose by Carol Tinson from the Gift of Stitching Magazine. She suggests in the pattern that you fill it with uncooked rice to make it firmer and weightier, i hadn't tried that before but it worked out well and i'll definately try it again.

A couple more bands were added to Lady Scarlet this weekend, but not a lot else has been done. Family are arriving from other parts of the UK for Uncle Bills funeral tomorrow so it's been a bit sombre here this weekend.

Saturday, 16 January 2010

Birthday gifts

January is a busy month for Birthdays for me. I need to plan in December for a couple that are Jan 1st and Jan 2nd, also 2 male members of my family had a birthday last week (i didn't stitch a gift for them).

The shaun fob was for one of the stitchy club ladies and these bookmarks are for two older members. I also give them a jar of my homemade marmalade as its become a bit of a tradition that they have one after they had a sample jar one year. I'll be taking these with me to the club on Wednesday but i can show you them as neither of the older ladies blog. The alphabet and flower design is from a very old magazine.

Last night i finished the stitching on the challenge piece for Stitch & Stash and put it together this morning. The Dec challenge was carried over to Jan as only one lady had managed to complete it by the deadline but i can't show you it until reveal day at the end of the month. I'm planning to continue with Lady Scarlet this weekend and try to complete it before i begin my new project. The rain has been falling since last night, the snows all melted and there are puddles everywhere so its far too wet to be outdoors doing anything.

Enjoy your weekend whatever your plans

Sunday, 10 January 2010

What did i stitch last week?

I was hoping to finish Just Nan - Lady Scarlet's Journey before the end of last year but time ran out as it does when Christmas draws near, there doesn't seem enough hours in the day to complete lesser important projects when gifts need to be stitched for a deadline day. This week in my quiet moments i completed Part 2 so still Part 3 left to do. Its such a lovely project and i do enjoy the little animals that are stitched 1 over 1 on the 28ct fabric, it adds such detail. Jan 1st was the start date for the Just Nan SAL at Stitch & Stash and i couldn't resist making a start on that too. You can choose any JN design, i have a few in my stash and finally decided on Ice Garden. There are quite a few ladies who have joined in this and its going to last all year long, how exciting its going to be to see lots of JN designs develop and stitchers who are new to JN try them for the first time.

You can never plan ahead too far and the monthly Christmas ornament SAL is continuing this year again at Stitch & Stash. With that in mind i knew the JBW 'Christmas Tree I' had to be my first this year, the chart was a gift from Karen and stitched up so fast.

I hope you had a nice weekend.

Saturday, 9 January 2010

Positive Thinking (long post!)

When i had my hospital appt just before Christmas, i read an article in the waiting room about the power of positive thinking. It said that if you lie in bed before you go to sleep and review your day and find at least one thing that was positive in your day you would get a good nights sleep and wake feeling more positive the next day, also it has an effect on your general health and well being. Over the holidays the article kept coming in my mind so i decided to give it a go Jan 1st and see if it really did make a difference to my thoughts and my life.

Seemed a good idea till Monday evening when i was on my way upstairs and the phone rang. My Aunt was calling to say that my uncle (who is also my godfather) had passed away 9.45 that evening. When i eventually got into bed i couldn't think of one positive thing that day.

Over the next couple of days i had some quiet time stitching, walked a bit even in the snow and bitter cold weather we were having, and the thoughts of Uncle Bill kept coming into my mind. The tissue box took a battering! But ... i also realised that there was something positive he had left me with. After 25 years suffering serious heart problems and the last 8 years he also had prostate cancer, he was in and out of hospital a lot but he didn't ever let these things take away his positive attitude and his beaming smile that were always there when i visited him both at home and in the hospital. His determination not to give in till he was ready and as he used to say 'there is nothing wrong with my mind, i was just given a body that wasn't up to the job, but i've made the best of it and lived a good life' and at 84 years old i think he deserves to be free from pain and suffering and rest in peace.

Thursday i woke up feeling much brighter (maybe positive thinking is working?). A few chores were done as i hadn't done anything all week and after digging out the car a visit to the supermarket to restock the cupboards - DH drove, no work this week due to the weather. Late afternoon i noticed when Midge came back in after playing out in the snow that he had a slight limp but thought maybe he had slipped on the ice and pulled something. Friday when we got up he couldn't put any weight on the leg. I had to be at the Dr's for an early checkup (DH dug out the car again and drove me) that went fine and we called the vet on our return. They wanted to see him immediately. She examined him and i heard the words "possible broken shoulder, x-ray, may loose a leg or could be fatal" we left him behind and headed home very subdued.

The vets is on a well gritted main road, but at the top there are traffic lights and we duly stopped at the head of the queue. All of a sudden the car lurched forward. An elderly gentleman behind in a brand new mercedes wasn't happy driving his own car and wanted to be sitting in the back of mine too!! DH got out and went to check on damage, the gentlemans response was "its new and automatic and it creeps forward on its own" DH not being in the best mood having left Midge behind muttered some words and i managed to hear his sarcastic comment of 'are mercedes making vehicles with no brake pedal or handbrake now then and i'll drive over the junction and we'll check damage then'. The traffic lights changed and we proceeded and stopped, the 'gentleman' never even stopped he put his foot down and drove off at speed.

On our return home DH investgated and there was only minor damage so that was lucky. Not long after the phone rang and the vet informed us that it wasn't a break, but he has been bitten a week or so ago she thinks in the arm pit by a fox or dog (teeth marks not close enough to be another cat) and he has an abcess inside the shoulder cavity. Sigh of relief and a couple of hours later he was back home recovering from the sedation with a bag full of antibiotics and painkillers and an appt to return Tuesday evening. He wanted to showing you his shaved paw what the naughty vet did.

DH and i were feeling somewhat stressed after our day and i needed to take a birthday gift to a friend. We'd had more snow so we decided to walk the mile or so to her house leaving midge with DS, it might clear our heads. I'd stitched her this fob, she's an avid Shaun fan. We helped deplete her biscuit mountain santa brought and enjoyed the cup of tea before wrapping up warm and heading home.

As i lay in bed last night and tried to think what positive thing had happend yesterday, 3 things came to mind.... Midge was back home safely, the little bump in the car could have been far worse and also the laughter and smiles we had with a friend yesterday afternoon positively lifted the mood for both DH and myself. SO.. does positive thinking work? i'm still undecided but think i'll keep giving it a go, i got up this morning with a smile on my face ready to face the day .... maybe it does after all.

p.s i'll show you the stitchy pics next time, this post is way too long now

Saturday, 2 January 2010

Happy Birthday Karen

When looking for something to stitch for Karen for her birthday, i came across this Just Nan design and the Sleeping Angel charm in my 'Mary Poppins bottomless bag' (i bet you all have a stash one too!). I put some little goodies into the bag for her too. Fabric was 28ct antique white laguna and the threads are DMC with the addition of gold and white Mill Hill seed beads.

I hope you've had a lovely Birthday Karen, it was really lovely to have a little chat with you on the phone this morning. x

The first time i made one of these little bags was in December for a non-stitching friend who turned 40. I wanted something to hold the glass 'fabulous forty' gift i bought. A bourse came to mind but then i found a tutorial for the lined bag here. I didn't show it last month as i wanted Karens to be a nice surprise. Design is from Just Nans 'Heartfelt' stitched on 28ct sky blue brittney using DMC.

Have a good weekend whatever your plans

Friday, 1 January 2010

First day of 2010

Having had a senior moment yesterday i forgot to get DH to draw a winner for my blogoversary so i asked him to draw a name out of the Christmas stocking before we put all the decorations away into the attic today, but he didn't want to. His reasoning was that as today was the FIRST day of a brand new year in a new decade wanted to choose the FIRST person that posted a comment .... so the winner of something made by me is **stitcheranon**

Congratulations Gaynor, having been a reader of your blog for a while i'll whip up something that i think you will like and get it mailed out to you soon.

Thank you all for taking part, i'm only sorry i cant make you all a little something, but that doesn't mean a surprise might not come your way during the year does it ....

I hope 2010 is a wonderful year for you all and i look forward to seeing the wonderful stitching and knitting projects you create

love and best wishes