Dec 30, 2010

After Christmas mayhem

DH and I had a very nice Christmas visiting with our relatives up in the Dallas area. 

Once we got back home, we were both plagued with sinus problems.  Apparently, our sinuses did not like Dallas and they spent several days letting us know their displeasure.  Sinus drugs are wonderful, even if they turn you into major couch potatoes.

I've been stitching like a fiend on the beagle dog as I need to get it finished by late January.  He only has one eye right now, but I've started on the other one.  ;-)

During our Christmas in Dallas, my usually non-romantic dad surprised us all, especially my mother!  I'll share that story this weekend.


Dec 25, 2010

Merry Christmas

"For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, which is Christ the Lord."

"Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men."

Luke 2: 11, 14

Dec 23, 2010

WIPping along

I got a lot of stitching done on the beagle dog yesterday.  Here he is.  I think I need to stitch his eyes next.


Dec 22, 2010

Beagle WIP

I'm really enjoying stitching this beagle dog.  There aren't a lot of confetti stitches, just big blocks of color.  No quarter stitches or backstitching either.  I started it on Monday and here's what it looked like this morning.  (It's the dog's nose if you can't tell.)


Dec 20, 2010

A challenge for 2011

I tried to post several times this weekend, but Blogger wouldn't play nice with my photos. 

Many stitchers are planning on participating in a new stitching challenge for 2011.  The challenge is called something along the lines of "The Crazy 15 Challenge for 2011."  Each participant is to choose 15 brand-new projects and start one of the 15 on each of the first 15 days of January, thus giving her 15 WIPs which she is to work on and finish during 2011.

I am NOT participating in this challenge.  Having 15 WIPs would send me over the proverbial edge.  I can barely tolerate having two or three WIPs, much less 15.  And I recently acquired a UFO which is vexing me sorely.

As many of you know, I have a BAP that I am supposed to be stitching for a family member.  It recently became a UFO as it was driving me nuts.  As I am generally a one-at-a-time stitcher, I had planned to work on this BAP until I finished it.  Instead, I only managed to make myself thoroughly and completely sick of it and ended up chucking it into a corner.  I may work on it some in the future, but if I don't, I'm not gonna stress over it.  My hobby is supposed to bring me happiness and joy.  The BAP was causing me to avoid stitching, so clearly, a change was needed.  I highly recommend corner chucking for relieving stitching stress.  ;-)

I finished my oldest nephew's Christmas ornament.  I finally settled on making him a biscornu.  I found a small car motif in a Donna Kooler book and stitched it in four different colors on the front.  I stitched the word "zoom" on the back. 

Next I am stitching a beagle dog for a quilt.  The I35 Stitchers are making a quilt for a friend who is battling cancer.  Our buddy Georgia will be taking our stitched squares and making them into a real, live quilt. 


Dec 14, 2010

An ornament finish

I'm having a bad time with ornaments here lately.  I was about three-quarters done with my oldest nephew's Christmas ornament and just couldn't get it finished.  I didn't like anything about it.  I didn't like the fabric, or the stitching due to the fabric, or the design, or the finishing technique I was using.  So I chucked it in the trash and picked a new design to stitch.  

I found a train pattern for my youngest nephew that I liked better than the one I originally chose and it stitched up quickly.  I tried a new finishing technique (and I will not be using it again).  But in spite of that, I think it came out okay.  It will be handled by a two-and-a-half-year-old, and if anything, it is well glued.  ;-)

Next year, I am just going to stitch each boy an ornament of my choosing.  I'll pick Christmas designs that I like and stitch them.  I've learned that stitching something I don't like - even for someone I really like - is a real chore.  It isn't fun.  When your hobby becomes laborious, then it's time to make a change.


Dec 12, 2010

If you ask Emma...

...if there are any SQUIRRELS in the yard, she runs to the window to check. 

And Dunkin' Donuts Mocha Mint coffee is out of this world.  I'm just sayin'!


Dec 10, 2010

An ornament finish

The weather today is in the 70's.  I sincerely doubt that we will burn all the firewood DH cut, split, and stacked for this winter as winter seems slow in arriving.  Last year, we had an unusually cold winter and burned a cord and a half of wood.  This year, I've yet to stop wearing shorts!  Although I have started wearing shoes - bummer.

I stitched and ornified this recently, and as the recipient should have received it in the mail by now, I can finally post a picture.

This is a Chrismon ornament.  Chrismon stands for "Christ Monogram" and Chrismons are symbols of Christ and Christianity.  The ornament above symbolizes baptism (shell) and the Trinity (three crystals) - Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.  They are typically displayed on Christmas trees at Christmas.  They can be crafted from any medium, but must be done in the colors of precious metals and gems.  For example, gold or silver, and diamonds or emeralds.

I stitched this one from the pattern book "Fifty-Five Christian Symbols, Unlimited" (Book Number 54) by Designing Women Unlimited.  This book is OOP, but I was able to find a copy on eBay.  Another Chrismon pattern book, "Christian Monograms," by Country Crafts is still available at 1-2-3 Stitch!.

If you'd like to read up on them, here is a link to a great website that explains what each symbol means.  The website actually uses stitched pictures from the first pattern book mentioned above.

I was motivated to acquire the patterns and stitch a Chrismon when I helped a friend with the logistics in helping the women's group at her church stitch new Chrismons for their church Christmas tree.  (The old ones met an untimely end in the unairconditioned attic of the church during hot Texas summers).  The ladies ended up stitching the new ones over two on 14 count Aida in order for them to be seen well from a distance.   


Dec 9, 2010

Here she is, Gloria!

Gloria was lamenting that fact that I haven't posted any pictures of Emma lately, so here she is!  It was cold one morning and she was laying on the floor in front of the wood stove giving me the stink eye - "HEY! This floor is cold!"  So, being the obliging human that I am, I brought her bed over for her to lay on instead of the floor. 


I35 Stitchtogether report

I had a great time at our stitchtogether last weekend.  I'd missed in November due to going to the Houston Quilt Show, so I was really looking forward to getting together with all the gals.

We had nearly everyone there and had lots of great food.  Lynn brought a big crockpot of homemade soup that smelled heavenly and tasted even better as many went back for seconds.  I'm surprised that folks didn't wander into our stitching room because they were following their noses!

And I had to take our gorgeous quilt to show off to everyone.  And I had to fend off "sneaky" attempts to appropriate it.  There were lots of show-n-tell projects to see also.

We had a gift swap which was a lot of fun.  Georgia and I had traveled to Austin together and we each knew what the other was bringing.  However, neither of us thought to show the other the bag she had her gift in.  After randomly picking bagged gifts, we ended up getting the gift the other had brought and I like to have died laughing over that.  I was fine with it as I ended up with a great set of handmade quilted pot holders!

I managed to get some stitching done on my "Tribal Seahorse" and it's coming along.

As far as stitching on the home front, I've been reading a lot instead.  But I need to get to stitching as I still have two Christmas ornaments I need to stitch and finish.  Hey!  I've got a few days left until Christmas, don't I?


Dec 6, 2010

Lumberjacking - Part Two

DH took Friday off and brought home the log splitter he rented.  He then proceeded to split all the logs that he had collected a couple of weekends ago into suitable firewood.  

Then he had to stack the split firewood on the log racks.

And as he was a bit zealous in collecting logs, he had lots of extra firewood which he had to stack at one end of our horse shed (no, we don't have any horses, but a prior owner of our property apparently did).  I think we are good to go with firewood.  ;-)

I spent Saturday in Austin at the I35 Stitchtogether - more about that tomorrow.