Sunday, April 29, 2012

Hello Shepherds Bush, Goodbye Stash Budget

The title pretty much sums up the sort of trouble I got into this week...

Yesterday LMS, LBH, and I headed for Shepherds Bush.  LMS had a list of Shepherds Bush patterns or kits she was after, and I'm always good for a trip up there.  LBH decided to come along to see what it was all about.  She doesn't stitch and was pretty sure that her money was safe for the trip.  So off we went!

We didn't make it past the front vestibule before we were picking out flosses. SB was clearing out their old Needle Necessities flosses for cheap, so I picked up some pretty pink and purple flosses to do something with. I'm sure I have some cute monochromatic freebies around here that will suit the flosses just right. I also had to get one of the little Namaste sewing cases. I've loved these since I first saw them, and caved this time around. And then I picked up a little floss pallet and corner gage that are a new to me item with the SB logo on them. Cute! And practical.

The three Country Cottage Needlework patterns were on my list of things to look for and buy while I was up at Shepherds Bush. They had them, of course.  Plus I picked up one of the ornaments from Little House Needleworks 2011 series. Had I stayed with these four patterns, I would have been on budget for April...

But then I wandered around a corner, and there was the cutest model stitched up of the above pattern. Adorable! I need it! SB had the pattern and flosses all kitted up, and I went and hunted down the sky fabric to go with it. Their model was stitched on a neutral, but I was feeling something a little more colorful.

The flosses on the orange fabric were also on my list of things to buy. This is going to be this years Christmas present for my two SIL's. I already had the pattern and the orange fabric. I just needed to lay out the flosses and see what looked the best. It turns out that this is the same color of floss that I used for my boot when I was stitching on Something Wicked. I think this is going to be the project that goes with me on the Cruise and Italian adventure in June. It's simple, not a lot of flosses are needed, and small. I just need to go cut out my fabric, zig-zag the edges, and I'll be good to go.

And finally, whilst wandering around and poking into all the corners of the shop, I saw the cutest pumpkink ornament all made up in the Halloween section. I had to have this pattern too! It will be the perfect ornament for the SIL's for Christmas of 2013. I don't think I'm thinking too far in advance... Anyway, SB hah the fabric all cut out for this and I pulled the specialty flosses. There are a couple of DMC's that I need to get out of my stash, and these are ready to go! (There are three cuts of fabric because I stitch one for myself when I'm doing the one for them... This is why I have more Halloween ornaments than Christmas ornaments, even though I like Christmas better.)

LMS found the patterns and flosses she was looking for, and LBH was tempted into picking up a beginners lean how to stitch kit. I think with a little influence we might get LBH to be an addict too! Although it will be hard to get her away from that scrapbooking addiction.

On the way home, we stopped by a beading shop. LBH was looking for double spacers for a watch band project she is working on putting together. She make LMS and I a really pretty beaded watch band for Christmas this past year. I looked at everything but managed not to buy anything. I kept thinking I'd blown my budget at SB and now there really was no more money to spend on fun stuff.

As I was putting all my new stash away, I came across the Garden of Love pattern.  I bought it when I saw everyone else on the A Year of Smalls blog working on it.  I didn't really like it on the neutrals that were shown, so I just bought the pattern and the flosses.  I pulled Garden out and went to my drawer of fabrics and started to sort through them.  I found a nice bit of linen, Peach Whisper, that was left over from another project a few years back.  Ooooh, pretty!  All the flosses show up nicely on this, and the color is nice and very mottled... Even though it's looking very washed out in the photo. I think I'm going to get this one set up to work on when I'm not feeling up for Flower Power.

I made some good progress on Christmas ABC's this week. Although I did give the caroler one row too much of hair, and didn't figure it out until I was stitching the scarf. So out came the scarf and face so I could take out the extra row of hair. Two days of stitching in, one day of stitching out... Just a few quick stitches and I'll be able to move the hoop. I'm thinking there will be two or three more weeks on this before I have it finished up... and knowing how I tend to underestimate things, that really means four or six weeks.

Here is Flower Power. I stitched a lot of green the past couple of weeks. I've got all the daisy leaves and stems done, and have gone as far as I can with the stargazer lily leaves and stems. I'm working on back stitching the daisy bits, and after that I think I'll put in the butterfly before moving onto the pink lilies. There is still a lot that needs to be done before I can even start to think about being finished with this section of the pattern. I turned the flash off on my camera when I took the picture. That seems to have solved the problem of it being too pink, but the photo is a little grainier than normal. Maybe one of these days I'll figure it out.

And here is the Heirloom Nativity Sampler. I'm closing in on finishing up this band of white lace, and then it will be a section of angels and snow. I will have reached to top of the sampler when I get to that point. Hurrah! I've completely forgotten when it was I started this thing! I'm thinking it was back in 2010. But that's okay given I only work on it on Sunday. I already know what my next Sunday project is going to be. It's the nativity by Stoney Creek. But I have a year or so (probably) before I need to start gathering up flosses and fabric and what-not for that one.

I had one non-stitchy related adventure this week. On Thursday evening my left eye was irritated, so I took out my contacts but that didn't solve the itchy-pokey feeling in my eye. I went to sleep thinking that whatever it was would be washed out overnight. Friday morning, and my eye was still irritated. Off I went to work and while there the itchy-pokey became more painful, so I called up the eye doctor and made an appointment to come in right after work.

At the eye appointment the doctor did see that there was a spot that was irritated, but didn't see anything that would be causing the irritation. He suggested numbing my eye and then swabbing out the area, I agreed to it, and that's the procedure that took place. I was pretty much up for anything that made the itchy-pokey-pain go away. When looking at the swab, the doctor could identify some odd fibers that came out. Neither of us had any idea where they came from since I just work in an office type environment and hadn't been around construction sites or any such thing. He gave me some various types of eye drops and said as soon as the numbing drops wore off I wouldn't be so sure about swabbing being the right thing to do. Boy he was right!! I was irrigating my eye with the wetting drops as soon as the numbing drops wore off!

I will say that on Saturday my eye felt a lot better, if not a bit dry, so more wetting drops was the order of business. As I was getting ready for my adventure to Shepherds Bush, I looked at my mascara... It contains little fibers that stick on your eyelashes to make the longer. Ah-ha! I've discovered where the eye irritation is coming from. No mascara for me until I can get over to Target on Wednesday and buy some new stuff. Stuff without lengthening fibers.

I hope you have a great week!
Hugs and Stitches,

Sunday, April 22, 2012


Well, while I haven't stitched much at home on Flower Power, Christmas ABC's is seeing some decent time at work.  Here's the progress from the past week of working on it.

I'm pleased with how it's coming along. I figure two more hoop-fulls (after the current one) and I'll be done with this. What to work on next at work is the question... Although the bigger question is: Will I still have a job when I get back from my Italian & Grecian Excellent Adventure. Since I'm a temp, it's not looking good. 53 days to unemployment, again. 52 day to the cruise. Maybe it's time to think about what project I want to take with me on the plane... Hmmm...

I got out the glue and acquired some fray check and went to work on the Cowboys ornament. I'm thinking it turned out pretty well. It's not perfect, but nothing I ever do is perfect. Here's the front:

And the back:

A big thank you to Vicki of SewFun for sending me the backing fabric. It's just perfect.

Hugs and Stitches,

*Edit: The scheduler doesn't seem to be working. This should have posted earlier this morning! Oh well.*

IHSW April Wrap-up

I finally managed to sit down with Flower Power and stitch on Sunday. It was me and the greens as I fleshed out a leaf headed down to the bottom of the scrolls, and then started the fill in work with a light green. There is still plenty to do with that light green filler, and then some with a green even lighter than that.  It's a good thing I don't hate stitching with green!

For the before IHSW roam back a couple of posts to see that picture.  I still haven't figured out how to correct for the pink hue of my photographs.  The coloring to the right of the piece is a little truer than what is being show to the left.

Quite by accident, I learned that the creator of my StitchMate floor stand has passed away.  I can't express how much I love my StitchMate, and what a wonderful job it does.  If it weren't for the StitchMate, I don't think I'd ever had even tackled Flower Power.  You can read Roger's obituary here and if you follow the link to the mortuary's page you can leave a personal condolence to the family. 

From what I understand and have read here and there, the business is on hold while the family searches for a trustworthy manufacturer.  In the mean time, the web page has been taken down (as most of you Google-ing have found).  I hope they are able to find a way to continue producing the StitchMate and it's accessories.  I was thinking about ordering a set of larger stretcher bars and perhaps the chart extension arm.  I am glad that I bought pretty much everything I thought I'd ever need when I made my initial order.  I clearly remember Roger making sure that I wanted four sets of the regular sized stretcher bars and the assorted lengths of scroll bars.  Yes, I was certain, and I'm so glad to have them now.

Now go hug your loved ones.
Hugs and Stitches,

Saturday, April 21, 2012

April's TUSAL 2012

My goodness, where has the first of the year gone. I swear it was just New Years the other day...

And with out further ado, here are Pinky and Dude with the jar:

It really doesn't look like much was added, which is the sad truth.  There are some more greens from Flower Power, and some random colors from Christmas ABC's, but not enough to make a big dent.  And here it is 8:30 pm on Saturday night of an IHSW and I have yet to sit down in front of Flower Power.  I'm tempted to stay up as late as I can working on it... But as we all know late night stitching is typically followed by early morning frogging.

Hugs and Stitches,

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Pre April IHSW

Okay, this weekend I am really going to do it! Sit down and stitch to my little hearts content! ... Well, after I serve my morning shift at the Temple, go grocery shopping, visit the gym, and do laundry on Saturday, then I'll stitch!!

Crafty-Stitchy Night with the girls was this week and at the house.  It's always fun to have them here.  I baked up some peanut butter blondies and put a chocolate frosting on top and we at them all.  No pictures of that, I'm afraid.  I worked on finishing up the Cowboys Jersey ornament.  Here's where I'm at with it so far:

I still need to glue some ribbon around the edges to hide where the two bits of matting board meet up.  I'm so glad that LMS was here.  I about lost my patience with pinning the stitching on centered.  She has more patience than I and pinned it for me.  As always, the name has been redacted to protect the crazy fan. 

I'm kind of bummed at how the stitching is all squished after being under a heavy book to make sure the two bits got glued together.  Any suggestions on how to puff them up?  I'm thinking next time around to put it face down on a fluffy towel before applying the books.

Here's an update on Flower Power... The starting point for the week.  I've put in an hour or so since I last posted it, so it doesn't look like much has happened... and well... not much has happened!  Looking forward to stitching on FP this IHSW.

When I finish up with the green I can go back and do some backstitching on the daisies.  Then I can count most of them done.  There is that one near the bottom that won't be done until I roll the scrolls next.  The stitching has a bit of a pinky hue to it.  I don't know how to correct for that, so just pretend that it's not nearly as pink as it looks.

A big hello to my new followers!  Thanks for stopping by!

Hugs and Stitches,

Sunday, April 15, 2012

The week that was

Yeah, I know... An unoriginal title. But what can you do when your mind is half asleep and there are still tons of things that need to get done before the end of the day?

This week was just as busy as the previous weeks, the highlights of which included a completely new haircut on Wednesday followed up by a completely new hair color on Saturday.  I haven't taken pics of the new color, but here's a shot of the new cut.  The old cut was down past my shoulders... I think we took off about 6 inches.

The new color is darker with a red undertone.  It's probably a little too dark, but I'm hopping it fades up into a slightly lighter shade in the next week or so.  We (stylist really...) put in a few chunks of violet in some of the under layers.  I love them.  They don't show up in all lighting situations, which is good.  I wanted some purple, but I didn't want it to scream purple.

My family had dinner together on Thursday before Mom & Dad flew to Brazil for their 18 month temple mission.  It was good to see everyone.  I really like it when my family is all together.

I've been stitching pretty good at work during my lunch breaks and am making good progress on Christmas ABC's by Lizzie*Kate.  I actually remembered to bring it home this week to take a picture!! (Shocker, I know!) I just have a few more things to fill in and it's time to move the hoop down. I'm seeing the end of the project and am starting to think about what I want to work on at work next.

And I found the Heirloom Nativity Sampler in it's bag behind some other projects that I had been sorting through.  I've finished up a couple rows of specialty stitches and am working on a band of white 'lace'.  That should take a couple of weeks to finish up...

I've also moved my stitching spot.  I went from this location in a spare bedroom:

To this spot in the main family room:

With a lovely view of the TV!

Woo-hoo!  I can watch/listen to my favorite shows as I stitch now.  I'm excited.  Why wasn't I set up here before?  Well Dad loves his TV, but I don't like all the mystery, lawyer, crime procedural shows that he loves.  So I chose to stitch where I didn't have to watch them.  But I'm in control of the remote now!  Mwa-ha-ha-ha-haaaa! ... Ahem... Pardon the evil laugh there...

I did stitch a bit on Flower Power this week.  But not really enough to show any progress on from the WIPocalypse post.  I know that International Hermit and Stitch weekend is coming up this weekend, and I have plans to do just that.  Sit and stitch... and do my laundry.  (Oooooooh, thrill a minute lifestyle!!)

Crafty Stitchy night with the girls is coming up this week too.  I am really looking forward to that.  I've got all the bits gathered up to make the Cowboys Jersey I stitched a few weeks ago into an ornament.  I hope it turns out really well.  It'll be my first finish of this variety that I've ever done.  It'll be a battle between perfectionist me and not-so-patient me.  Be interesting to see who wins that round.

About the only other exciting thing to have happened this week was the power went out at work on Tuesday just after lunch.  We hung around in my department trying to decide what to do, and when the power hadn't come back on after an hour, we packed it up and went home. ... Well, I went to the gym first, but eventually did get home.  The next day we found out the power had come on about an hour after we'd left, which is an hour before going home time, so I didn't feel bad about leaving at all.

I hope your week is productive, stitchy, and not nearly as crazy as the last.
Hugs and Stitches,

Saturday, April 7, 2012

WIPocalypse - April 2012

I don't know if I have actual pictures to show of what I've been up to for the past month...  I went and left Christmas ABC's at work and I don't know where I put Heirloom Nativity Sampler.  Hmmm... I'd better go searching for it.  So I guess that leaves the one project that is too big to misplace, Flower Power by Crossed Wing Collection.

March's progress picture:

April's progress picture:

I do wish there was more progress on this one, but life has gotten a bit away from me right now. So much going on and not much of it is stitching. Maybe things will quiet down soon and I can get back to it.

Hugs and Stitches,

Liebster Comes for a Visit

I've been following the Liebster around the stitchers blogs for the past month or so.  I must say I've been able to add a ton of great new blogs to my reader.  Almost too many to read and keep up with, but you really can't have too much of a good thing!  And now the Liebster has landered here.  Everyone wander over to Lee-Ann's blog, A few of my Favourite Things (who nominated me for this award) and check her out!

Now some background information about the award :

Liebster is a German word, meaning favorite, dearest or beloved and the Liebster is awarded by bloggers to other, newer bloggers, who have fewer than 200 followers, to spread the word and help the new(er)bies gain wider recognition. The award comes with four conditions that each recipient must satisfy when accepting:

1) Choose five up-and-coming blogs (with fewer than 200 followers) to award the Liebster to.

2) Show your thanks to the blogger who gave you the award by linking back to them.

3) Post the award on your blog. List the bloggers you are giving the award to with links to their sites. Leave comments on their blogs so they know about the award.

4) Share 5 random facts about yourself that people don't know about you.

So here's 5 random things about me:

1)  The Easter Bunny does not come to my house.  No. The Easter Pig comes instead.  "The Easter Pig?" you say?  Yes.  The Easter Pig arrives and leaves a whole mess of chocolate on the kitchen table.  None of this hunting for your basket sort of thing.  No sir, the E.P. doesn't have time for that sort of thing (and he's kind of lazy anyway.)  The chocolate is left up front where it's easily accessible to everyone.

2) My dream job is to be a Professional Driver.  Not a long distance trucker kind of professional driver.  Nope.  I'm thinking more of the brand new car on sweeping curves in the commercials.  They ones where "Closed Course. Professional Driver." appears at the bottom of the screen.  I want to be that guy!  How do you get that job?

3)  I compulsively sing along to music.  It doesn't matter where I am, in the car, at work, shopping... If there's a song on, chances are I'm singing along.  Once upon a time my sister and I were at a buffet with some friends in Vegas.  A song came on and at the same time we started singing along (in harmony to each other none-the-less.)  One friend looked at us startled.  Another friend shrugged it off and said: "They always do that."

4)  I dropped a guy because he didn't think cross stitch was a 'cool' enough hobby. ... Well there were other things wrong with the relationship, but STILL.  I support you with your hobbies and dreams (even though I don't understand them), the same courtesy would be nice.

5)  I would much prefer to be independently wealthy. ... But then again, who wouldn't?

Okie dokie, now for those 5 blogs for nomination.  This is much more difficult because I think everyone I read in cross stitch land has already been warded the Liebster... If I completely disregard the bit about having less than 200 followers, I might get closer to the proper number.

1) Lisa, one of my BFF's, and her new blog No Worries; Craft Happens.  She stitches, she quilts, she beads, and she just started blogging this year so she could join the WIPocalypse.

2) Charity, another of my BFF's, and her blog Charity's Writing Journey.  She's striving to be a published author and this details her journey.  She's got 1 full novel under her belt and is working on two or three more.

3) Penny, my Mom. Her blog is Quilt 2 Sur5.  She's changing it up as bit as she and Dad leave for an 18 month mission to Brazil on Friday.  But her backlog of quilts is a lot of fun!

4) LJ, my fantasitc Aunt, actress, and baker.  Her blog Frosted! is all about her cupcake obsession.  Good eats!

5) Well hmm.... I'm having a devil of a time finding a 5th that hasn't already been nominated.  How about your put a link to your blog in the comments for everyone else to follow along to?  That'd be fun.  I do love to look at all the pictures of your projects.

Hugs and Stitches,