Tuesday, June 19, 2012

TUSAL, June 2012

Well... I only had two weeks to stitch between the last TUSAL and this one. Mostly because of the trip. And I only stitched during one of those weeks. The second week was taken up getting stuff ready for the trip! As per the usual, here are Pinky and Dude and the jar. This time, they're checking out the wee pile of orts before they go in the jar.

Hugs and Stitches,

Sunday, June 17, 2012

The Traveling Traveling Pattern

So I threw the traveling pattern in my bag this morning so that I could take a picture of it here and there about town. I don't know how well this is going to work as I'm not much of a picture taking person in the first place... But I remembered to get one in today. Here we are on the balcony of the Uffizi Gallery with the the Palazzo Vecchio in the background.

And here I am sometime later enjoying a peach gelato. Sooooo tasty!

I have walked past the stitchy shop twice now and it has been closed both times. Tomorrow (Monday) we are going out to Cinque Terra for a day trip which leaves Tuesday as the last day to stop by the shop and hope it's open. I really had wanted some stitching products from Italy as part of my souvenirs.

Today, we spent a ton of time at the Uffizi Gallery and looked at a lot of art. We then went up and saw the David at the Academia. After we looked at the sculpture and all of the art there we can safely say that we have hit art overload.

It's now about 7 o'clock and time to get out and get out last gelato of the day. Strawberry or Pineapple? Or maybe a bit of each?

Hugs & Stitches,

Made it to Florence!

And here are a pair of bad self portraits to prove it!

In front of the Doumo

Infront of the Ponte Vecchio (No I'm not going to look up how to spell that properly right now. Yes I know my eyes are closed.I was looking directly into the sun.)

It only took us about 36 hours to get here, from the time we left the house for the air port to the time we got off the train from Rome and found our hotel. Yesterday was spent in a sleep deprived blur of travel and looking for gelato. We found the gelato.

Due to a layover and several delays I was able to get a lot of stitching done on the travelling pattern before we even got here. I need to remember to take it with me today on our travels and 'flat stanley' it infront of everything.

Hugs and Stitches,

Friday, June 15, 2012

International Hermit and Stitch Weekend

Depending on the day and time you see this, I'm on a plane bound for Italy. Not much hermiting being done on a plane, but in this case lots of internationalling. And I'm stitching. Something of one of these two projects below.

I need to get the traveling pattern done asap so it can go on it's merry way, but I had hoped to get Long Spider done on this trip as well. We'll just have to wait and see, won't we.

Hugs and Stitches,

Sunday, June 10, 2012

A long week, little stitching, lots of shopping, and a win or two

Well this week was very busy. My boss was out of town on vacation so I was trying to get her job done and my job done all week. On top of that, the server that hosts our SharePoint 2003 site kept crashing and failing so I had to do a bit of emergency conversion and creating forms for SharePoint 2010. We're doing the official migration Monday morning, and I hope it goes well. We knew that the 2003 server was on it's death bed and were working towards a conversion, we just didn't expect it to go mostly belly up while my boss was gone. I tried to take it in stride and just did the best I could.

My ticket to the Barenaked Ladies concert arrived in the mail this week. I'm excited to go and see them. My 20 year high school reunion is this summer and I had been debating on if I was going to go or not. I knew the pricing of the fancy pants dinner and program they were planning and it was just on the edge of what I would be willing to pay for the thing. Then I found out that BNL was playing in Vegas the same evening of the reunion, and the ticket prices were the same for the two events. I called up Uncle N in Vegas to see if I could stay with him and Aunt J that night after the concert. When he said 'Of course!' well I knew which event I was going to. I bought my ticket and now that it's here, I need to put it in a safe place... but not too safe a place since everything that is put in a safe place tends to end up lost.

Let's see, oh yes, I won a few things!

First of is a Traveling Pattern gets to come stay with me for a little bit. It's a cute cute design that says Thankful for Ewe. I have appropriate fabric and flosses, and if the pattern arrives before I leave for my Italian and Grecian Adventure, I'll take it with me and try to get it done while I'm there. The pattern is coming from Ziggyeor. If you don't already follow her blog, you really should. I like the stitching, but I also love her posts on what she wore. Very very creative! Here is a picture of her finish of the pattern in case you aren't familiar with it.

The second surprise comes from Jess over at Tat-ilicious. (I've been shamelessly stalking tatting blogs in addition to the cross stitch blogs.) When Jess put out a call for some inspirations for her hand dyed thread, I of course suggested something like a purple pansy... you know, a fade from light lavender to dark plum with a splodge of golden yellow in there. Well, she liked the idea enough to dye up a little bit of it and is sending me along a few skeins of it. I'm very excited, although I'm not sure exactly what I'll make with it as I still haven't managed to do anything more than a few chains a few loops and a few picots! Time has not been on my side this week for indulging in the hobbies! Jess is also dying up many of the other suggestions and sending samples to the people who suggested the colorways and putting more skeins up for sale in her Etsy shop: Tatilicious. I'm so tempted to buy some of the Mother of Pearl thread and the fun red, white, and blue thread. But I am being strong and not spending every penny I have... I'm going to Italy to do that. Here's a picture of my suggestion all dyed up.

I think last week I mentioned that I had gone out shopping in search of shorts, pajamas, bras, and walking shoes. Well this weekend was a repeat of last weekend, only I stopped mid shop to have my hair cut and color freshened. (Love it!) I was only half successful... or maybe it's two thirds successful... I found new walking shoes and new pajamas. The shorts were the most frustrating thing. I tried on shorts everywhere! Target, Kholes, Lane Bryant, JC Penny, CJ Banks, Christopher & Banks. No shorts that I liked. I finally did buy some crops at Lane Bryant, but since I'm short, they look more like floods. Ugh. I guess I'll be wearing jeans, floods, and a skirt all around Italy.

I did debate about those beige shoes. They are light in color and will show dirt easy. They were also available in white, grey, and black. The white ones were out for looking more athletic and being white. The black ones were out because hot sun on dark shoes equals hot feet. So it was down to the beige and grey ones. Well the beige ones won out because the box that contained my size of the grey ones were waaaaaaaaaaaaay at the top of the shelves and there was no way I could reach them. There weren't any helpful ladders or step stools around, and the sales people seemed to be very busy. So the beige ones won in the end.

Mom asked if I had started packing last week. The answer is sort of. I got the suitcase out and opened it up. I've just been throwing stuff into it as I go or think of something that I need. I looked like this Saturday night, but I've rummaged around my drawers and thrown on a bunch more shirts and shoes and what not. I am having a huge shoe dilemma. I don't want to take more pairs than I absolutely need... but I love shoes!! I had also thought I'd take along my gym gear for when I hit the ship, but that thought has been on and off and on and off so many times now. The actual gym clothes aren't bad, it's another pair of shoes that make up the biggest part of the quandary. Maybe I'll keep them out and see how much the bag weighs once I get the rest of the stuff packed.

Speaking of shoes. While I was out doing the shopping I came across a pair that would be perfect for my Saturday morning service. What do you think? So cute! The bow might be a bit much, but I think it slides off of the strap. (I didn't stop to try them on as the store was very crowded and I needed to hurry on to my hair appointment.)

Alrighty, and finally the tiny bit of stitching that I did manage to do during the week. Garden of Love saw an hour of work this morning. I love the purple, I'm not loving the cream. I haven't decided if I'm going to backstitch around the butterfly and birds or not so that their bodies show up better. I should probably make a decision on what I want to do before continuing any further. But it's just so darn cute! Even with my counting errors!

Kathy's Violets didn't get a lot of time at work what with SharePoint being down and what not, but I did manage to finish up the Anchor quadrant and start in on the Sullivan's quadrant. My first impressions of the Sullivan's is that it isn't as soft and pliable as Anchor or DMC are, which means compared to the Cosmo it's stiff stuff indeed. However it does cover well and I haven't had any problems with knotting. Then again I rarely have knotting problems regardless of what I use, but I think that's more due to some random technique I subconsciously employ than anything else.

And that pretty much sums it up. Thanks for sticking with me thus far! I want to give a big welcome to the new followers and an even bigger thank you for those of you who comment. I really do appreciate all the nice words. I hope you have a great week. Me, I'm getting on a plane on Friday headed for Rome, Florence, Venice and then a cruise of the Grecian islands. (Once again, don't bother trying to rob the place, my Brother and Sister-in-Law live here too... and he's a mixed martial arts fighter type. Very scary!)

Hugs and Stitches,

Monday, June 4, 2012

WIPocalypse - June 2012

I'm making good progress on my WIPocalypse projects. I actually managed to finally finish one off. But I didn't pick up another WIPocalypse project to replace it. That might be a wee bit of a problem. Here's the update:

Christmas ABC's by Lizzie*Kate from May's Report:

Christmas ABC's by Lizzie*Kate for June's Report. It's a finish! Woo-hoo!!

Flower Power by Crossed Wing Collection from May's Report:

Flower Power by Crossed Wing Collection for June's Report:

I got a lot more stitched on Flower Power than I though I did before looking at the pictures. That butterfly is over one and took a good while to get done with.

Happy WIPocalypse everyone, and we'll see you again next month!

Hugs and Stitches,

Sunday, June 3, 2012

Stitch Stitch, Hurray!

It was a good week. I was busy, I did stuff. I'm looking forward to less busy weeks where I can stitch on stuff more. That would be really good. Why don't they pay people to stay at home and stitch? Wouldn't that be a dream come true?

Kathy's Violets didn't see a lot of time at work this week because 1) it was a short work week, 2) I left the project home on Tuesday, and 3) we were very busy at work.  I did finish up those Algerian eyelets and started on the border of the pansy.  This is the Anchor floss quadrant I'm working on, and I continue to feel that it's pretty much the same as DMC as far as my stitching experience goes.

Next up is Garden of Love.  I know for a fact I'm going to run out of flosses in the pink since I only bought them in a simple kit and then decided to stitch it with two instead of the one strand recommended.  And I'm a little sad that the cream of the butterfly body doesn't show up so well against the Peach fabric I'm using on the background.  Maybe a wee bit of back stitching will be in order once I get a little further along.

I sat down one evening and practiced my tatting knots for a while.  I started at the big blue twisted picot and just kept going.  I'm not sure what I did to get the picot to twist like that, but I'm pretty sure it's not supposed to do that.  I will say that I am getting better at getting the knots onto the right thread and my tension is improving, but I am still moving at an incredibly slow rate.  That's okay though.  I've just started.  I can't expect to be perfect right from the get-go.

I have about come to the conclusion that I need a simple pattern to tat... for a book mark or something.  So I feel like I'm making something.  I hate making nothing when I'm learning new stuff.  I want to make something now!  I guess I'll have to poke around the tatting blogs some for an easy pattern.

And last, but certainly not least, is the monster we all know and love: Flower Power.  I am adding the first of three Stargazer lilies that are left.  I'm going to have to roll the scroll up and then down to get enough linen showing for the other two lilies.  Tomorrow is the WIPocolypse too,  so I guess I'd better go put in a few more strand of floss so it looks like I've done something between now and then.

Ugh.  It's another badly colored picture of Flower Power.  One of these days I'll figure out how to do color corrections. ... Or maybe not.

There are now 11 more sleeps until I get on that plane and head off for two weeks in Italy and Greece with my sister and Aunt.  Don't worry, my brother and his wife will be here at the house, it will not be empty so don't even try to burgle the place.  But I digress.  I have a list of stuff to get done longer than my arm and I'm not really sure where I'm going to get everything to fit!  But I am very excited to go.

On my list of things to get are walking shoes, Burmuda shorts, pajamas, and new bras.  First up was the shoe store and I tried on every low profile walking shoe that I could find.  I didn't really like any of them.  I don't want something too athletic looking, but I do want that kind of support. I'll have to keep looking.  Next up was the fat lady store (Lane Bryant) for all my other clothing needs.  Now, I can order the shorts online, but I really want to try them on first.  So I went into the store but they didn't have my size.  Next on the list was the pajamas.  Once again, the shop didn't have my size in the ones I wanted.  (Why does everyone have to buy the purple ones?  Purple is my color, people, keep your hands off of it!)  As to the bras, once again, nothing in my size.  It was a cheap shopping excursion.

Since the only problem with the bras is that the under wire is poking out, I'm toying with the idea of pushing it back in (which I've been doing this past week) and super gluing the thing in place.  It's not like I can really ruin the bra any more than it already is with the super glue...  At the best I'll extend the life of the bra until I get back from my trip and have more time to hunt down bras that fit.

My plants seem to be doing pretty good.  My brother installed the sprinkler for the lilac bushes the other day, and they seem to be pretty happy about things.  I have lost some of the alysium I planted out front.  I don't know if they got any water at all (even after I cut back the box wood) because they are all shriveled and dried up.  I guess I'll have to pull them out of the bed.  I need to go out back and check on the peonies.  I was out there the other day looking at the lilac bushes, I can't believe I didn't think to check out the peonies!

The family of humming birds has returned and is visiting the feeder again.  It's fun to watch them and when it's cool enough to have the door open to hear them zooming around out there.  It looks like we have one big one back from last year, plus two or three smaller birds that must be hatchlings.  The big one bullies the smaller ones around and sometimes doesn't let them get near the feeder.  They sure are fun to watch.

Off I go to work on Flower Power.  I have two whole hours to stitch before I need to go to bed.

Hugs and Stitches,