Friday, February 27, 2015

Uneventful trip down, but the games will begin tonight!!!!

We arrived in Nashville ahead of the snow, and settled in nicely.  It started snowing around  7:00 p.m. and by then we were nestled in and eating dinner in the room.  Best time ever.  Pictured are the banners as they are started to be hung by the designers outside their rooms.  These started going up Thursday and then tonight the games begin.  We can't wait!  I'm hoping to find some exciting and magical new treasures.  I'll keep you posted.

Sunday, February 22, 2015

I was just patting myself on the back for finishing the 1st of the Gathering club kits when Mary arrived today with the Chessie and Me club kit and the Ladies Prim Society club kit, so I'm back in the hole again, but I refuse to let it get me down.  Anyway, "Hurt Not the Earth" was our first kit of 2015 from the club and I just love Plum Street Sampling and this was fun to stitch and a breeze to put together.  If you like the look of this, and don't belong to the Gathering Club take a look at Plum Street Samplers web site and look at her designs.  We have most of them in the shop because we all like them.   I have stitched a few of the designs now and I enjoy every one I've stitched.  Her colors are spot on, as are her design elements.  I had fun with this, it was stitched over 2 so it wasn't the strain that an over 1 can put on you.  And then it came as a complete kit so I didn't have to scrounge around for fibers, etc.  While she supplied the backing fabric,  it was a gray blue and I just didn't think it looked as nice as some of my fabrics,  (you know I just love to buy Moda fabric), so I looked in my stash and found a piece that was perfect colorwise as the colors are picked up from the design and matched the chenille edging that went around the pillow perfectly.  Fun, Fun, Fun and since I finished that I decided to restitch Purple Threads, "Back to Spool."  I stitched it once for a Christmas Gift but always knew I'd stitch it again for a shop model.  So it was a one day, start to finish piece and as always when you are finishing, I found an easier way to put it together so I'm feeling really smart right now.  But with 2 finishes this week I now have to pick out something else to start...whoppee!  The best news in the start!  Since Sara didn't want me slipping and sliding on the ice on the road today, she instructed me to stay home.  I was already to head down to the shop, but I am afraid of falling so I gave it a little thought and between she, Vernon and Michael decided it might be better if I stayed home and started packing for Nashville.  Oh...I can't wait.  As usual there's a lot to get done before we actually pull out on Tuesday morning, but I've got a head start since I started today, so I should be able to get it all done.  (fingers crossed). I can't wait to see the new charts an stuff.  We've already put in a couple of orders to pick up while we're down there and there are a  few I've seen that I know I want to do so I don't want to start something big now so I can start one of the things we pick up in Nashville while I'm in Nashville.  I love being ahead (you wouldn't know that from how far behind I am in club pieces, but it's my goal).    Last year I picked up a kit from Shepherd's Bush in Nashville, stitched it and posted it the next day and we heard a few people in the halls talking about how they saw someone had finished the Friendship piece by Sheoherd's Bush already and posted it.  For once I was ahead of the crowd, but that doesn't happen often.  Perhaps I'll work on my class piece....we're a little over a month away from Sherrie's class so it would be nice if I'd get the pre-stitch done.  I have to say I usually always have my pre-stitches done early so I'm sure I'll come through this time as well, especially since I'll actually be taking the class instead of Sara.  With the Tangles in town and the class, Sara felt it was best if I wasn't  the one in the shop (I think that is an indication that I'm too slow and perhaps not as focused as I need to be) and amazingly enough....I'm ok with that.  So I'll be helping in the shop before and after class.  In the meantime...I must get ready for a day at Toys R Us with my Izi, who is turning 5 and couldn't decide what he wanted and so we're going over to let him survey the store and pick out what he wants.  The best's been raining since yesterday afternoon so the snow is all but gone.  The bad part is it's raining and the fact that Izi won't be able to choose so I could be in Toys R Us until next week.  Well, I do have to be home by Tuesday for our annual Nashville ride.  Can't wait.  Have a great day

Friday, February 13, 2015

OMG...I can't believe I'm back on skatepark duty..

Michael was well enough to come to school today so we had class today until 1:45 and after 2 days off we were struggling.  I made him take an English exam and it wasn't pretty but we got through it and now we've actually finished and taken finals on two subjects, so we're doing well.  So after he left I took my usual position....resting on the sofa, dozing off and on and staring at my needlework.  Just about the time I was ready to pick it up I got the call..."Mom what are you going to be doing later?"  Which is Mary's call to arms for me to watch one of the kids.  So, of course, I said, stitching, what do you need and I heard the words that, with a wind chill of 15 degrees outside, I did not want to hear.  Skatepark duty because Izi has indoor soccer.  What can a grandmother do but grab her phone, money, and head out.  So I did.  It wasn't that big a deal, of course, because unlike spring and summer the skate park closes earlier, and I wasn't sitting outside but in the comfort of a warm car.  In fact the boys (there were only two kids there, Solomon and his friend Brandon) left the park to street skate so the park closed early....but the boys kept skaking until it got really dark and then Brendon asked Solomon to spend the night so I was able to leave the park but now they are skating outside my place waiting for Mary to get back with the pizza and then I'm done with skatepark duty for the day.  15 degrees and this kid is outside skating.  I helped them put the ramp I got Solomon for Christmas together so they could use it and my hands are freezing, I'm sure I've got frost bite and yet...they are still out there skating.  But I will say this....Solomon use to be a little sickly....they kept their house at 90 degrees, because they were always cold, so it was like he lived in a hot house.  This winter he hasn't even had a mild perhaps this skateboarding thing is a blessing, but 15 degrees....honestly.  Meanwhile they can barely get Izi out of the house which is why I don't mind doing this because Izi loves soccer and it gets him out, well it's indoor soccer at this point, but the point is he's off the damn IPad and computer. Mary's home...I free at last, Thank God I'm off skating duty.  Now back to stitching.

Things Unseen is finally done!!!!!

Michael is sick and has been home in bed for 2 days, and the extra time has given me the time necessary to finish, Things Unseen, the mystery sampler by Lizzie Kate Designs.  While I'm normally not a sampler person, this proved to be whimsical and since it was all over two relatively easy to stitch.  I created a problem for myself when I started the border stitch using one thread of floss, however, when I started the sampler itself I realized I like 2 threads better, but was too lazy to take out the border which I started so I left it in.  I jump around so that I don't end up with the border at the end, and I don't do it to begin with as any mistake made in counting would mean you'd have to tear out a lot if you made a counting mistake on the border.  So, I work the border right along with the design, that way any mistake is caught early.  Anyway, after working an inside section I would thread the needle with 2 strands and start on the border again.  After a while of stitching I'd realize it and pull it out and restitch the border with 1 strand.  However, I didn't realize I had done it with one section and by the time I noticed it I was so close to being done I just left it.  It isn't that glaring so I don't think it will show up once it is framed and hung....well that's what I'm telling myself anyway.  At first I had planned to use the 2 buttons made for this piece, but I also found I wanted to switch out the stitched bees for the Twisted Thread Bitty Bees and felt it might be too much extra stuff put on the sampler so I decided to go back stitch the portions what are covered with the buttons and then added the bitty bees where the stitched bees went.  I also added black beads to the center of the 2 motifs on the bottom, the one birds eye and the matching motif to the bottom motifs.  It gave me the satisfaction of adding beads, I do love a bead or two on a sampler....oh, yet on any stitching.  So with that finished it's off to find something new to stitch...whoppee!!!!  And back to finishing Sweet Heart of Mine.  Have a great day...stay inside warm and stitching.  It's -4 here with the wind chill so you know I'll be staying in, but Michael returns to school today so I'll be doing work, at least in the morning.

Monday, February 9, 2015

Progress being made....

Progress is being made on "Things Unseen" the mystery sampler by Lizzie Kate.  Of course as I've stitched this one I'm on the constant lookout for places to stick a bead or two.  I don't know what it is about me that I'm always looking for a place to stick a bead.  Almost an obsession...anyway, I've got a few ideas but won't be certain until I finish part 3.  Since I hate borders (well I hate the repetition of the stitching of borders) I always work my border along with my piece.  If I try stitching my border first, I always made a counting mistake and end up having to take some of it out, so I learned long ago to work the border along with the piece and that doesn't happen.  Also when I'm done stitching the body of the sampler, I don't have to go back and stitch the boring (for me) border.  Just got a call from Sara telling me to stay home today and I'm thinking I might just do it.  Since I worked Superbowl weekend I haven't had a full day off for 2 weeks so this will be a welcome reprise.  I just wish I could sit here and stitch all day, but alas I have a lesson plan to devise and my  house could really use a cleaning, so I guess my day off has become my cleaning day...rats!!!!  It's truly lovely outside with the sun shining brightly and the weather in the 40's.  I can't imagine what those in the Northeast are going through with snow after snow.  I use to wish for a snow day periodically, but since our year with 22 inches in a 2 week span I've decided I can look at the snow on T.V. elsewhere and just be happy to be snow free.  I guess I better get to cleaning.  Have a great day.

Sunday, February 8, 2015

I swear it's over now!

Christmas is done I'm sure this time.  The tree that you see at the top left is my final gift from Debbie Liming.  It is so cute and so perfect for me since I no longer am putting up a tree I can now put this one out and consider my tree up.  It's from Prairie Schooler and while the leaflet is in my stash it's so far back I can't even see it.  So believe me I was thrilled someone stitched it for me.  And the fabulous tree perfect and to tie it up in a bow, the cherry on the top, Debbie found a cookie cutter charm and that is attached around the bottom of the tree.  Love it.  Thank you Debbie for all your hard work in stitching and then finishing so expertly.  Classes do pay off don't they.  The other pictures are the Shepherds Fold part 4, Cherish Life needle book.    I made a couple of changes because as many of you already know I didn't understand the meaning behind the words they put on the pieces at first so I changed it on the first couple and now I'm having to change it on all pieces, so that's why my needle book says "needles and pins", but I'm O.K. with that because the design is still so sweet. Because of that change I moved the middle heart over and put a heart over the house.    In finishing the book, I couldn't get the buttonhole loop to cooperate and finally said the heck with it and just put in a perle cotton string with a thimble charm attached.  And I'm O.K. with that. (you can see the charm on the right picture of the folded book.  This is such a wonderful set.  If you haven't seen all 4 pieces you need to take a look. 

The the last two pictures are of the inside of the book...I wanted you to see the rick rack flower which is actually hidden when the needle page is laying flat.  I'm thinking that I should have cut the needle page in half and then stacked one on top of the other and then the right side with the flower would be visible so you could see it.  Live and learn.  Of course I could have taken it out and redone it, but I opted to let it go.  The bottom picture is the needle book open.  I have to admit I did make a horrific boo boo...I forgot about the buttons and ironed the top of the piece.  It melted the color off the star and melted a little of the black button in the middle of the flower.  After I got done hitting myself in the head I took the buttons off, turned them over and reattached them.  Perhaps I'll remember this next time.  I get close to finishing something and all I can think about is getting it done.  Sometimes you just need to take a breathe, take a moment and then iron.   Once that was finished I decided to get on with Lizzie Kate's mystery sample, "Things Unseen" and I'm almost done with part 2 and will be moving on to part 3 tonight.  I should be done with this in the coming week hopefully because Patriotic Patty is feeling really lonely since I haven't picked it up since Superbowl.  Plus when I got to work today the first  2015 Colonial Gathering kit had arrived. I haven't finished 2014 yet so I'm feeling a little pressure. 

Friday, February 6, 2015

Oh, happy day!  The Superbowl weekend was an enormous success, even with our web site down for the entire time.  Drats.  We're so sorry for that, but that wasn't our fault and thankfully Julie, our web person, got us up and running by Sunday, however, I wasn't able to blog until today for some reason.  Anyway, I've been dying to show you some special items I received as  gifts during the weekend.  Just for no other reason than she's sweet, Stasi Burhman handed me the red felt envelope (isn't it cute?) and said, "I have a little something for you."  Her little something was... 3 valentine bags inside the envelope, each with treats for me.  The first bag had some supplies I will enjoy using when I'm finishing my treasures, the second bag was full of the most delicious fudge she made....yummmo(needless to say it's gone now)!  And the 3rd bag had this precious little pin keep made to fit inside a locket (she got from Hobby Lobby) and then she stitched the one side on 52/60 linen (oh,, my!) and the other side she put in fabric with a little padding to hold my needles.  Needless to say the only needles that fit are cute.  I love this idea and she also told me she saw the original done with 32 ct. (I think or 28 ct) so I can replicate this...of course it can't say token of friendship because you need to do that on 52 for it to fit.  But how sweet is this piece.  I couldn't have been more thrilled.

Thank you so much Stasi.  I love, love, love it!  Tomorrow I'll show you my final (I know I said that before, but this time I think I mean it....Christmas gift.)  Unbeknownst to me, Debbie Liming had one more gift to give me.  I got a wonderful Christmas goodie bag when she was here before Christmas and had no idea she wasn't quite done with the stitched portion since the bag was filled with such wonderful treats.  So I was shocked to find another Christmas gift.  To say, "My cup runneth over" is an understatement.  Before I close I want to thank all the ladies from Pennsylvania who made their way here for the Superbowl retreat and shopped with us.  Also the locals who still left their homes to retreat here, as well as the Baltimore ladies who joined us and last, but not least, the Delaware ladies.  We also had several groups who car pooled down to shop and we thank them as well  You all made our weekend really successful so thanks to you all.  We had a full house that was for sure but a wonderful time was had by all.  Plus a whole lot of stitching took place.  Several of us were working on Patriotic Patty for our Sherri Jones class in April.  I have to say it is a fun stitch.  I've enjoyed every moment so far.  Stacy and Debbie from the Delaware Guild are almost done their pre-stitch, however, I got distracted so I am no where close to finishing and Debbie Liming has also faced distractions, but I plan to work on it next week and will hopefully finish it.   (I like to have my prestitch pieces done far ahead of when they are needed.)  We also got in the next part of the Shepherd's Fold on Friday so needless to say, I had to have one right away (part of my distraction) and got it stitched and finished yesterday.  Fun, and so cute, it was a joy to stitch and a great addition to my box.  Drawn Thread's new designs arrived, "Love Birds" just in time for Valentine's day and really a smaller design so it will go quickly.  Their "Treasured Tools" design is so fabulous if you are looking for a case for you scissors and needles.  And the last design is "Love Letters" which is a lovely alphabet sampler.  Mercy there is just not enough time.  Sara wouldn't let me take any of the new designs home (except the Shepherd's Fold piece because we have plenty of them)....I had to let the retreaters have first choice, but as soon as we get in a new supply,  one of each of Drawn Threads will be going home with me.  I love how delicate these designs look and the specialty stitches are so much fun to execute.  So many little time.  Got to run now though, school is about to open for the day.  Down here the sun is shining, and so beautiful, plus the sun distracts us from the cold.