Sunday, 30 August 2009

The End

It's the end of:
  • my one week off - a little *boo hoo-ing* going on here but I have to say it was a great time off to recharge. I got a lot of stuff done, some mundane, some fun and lotsa sleep!
  • summer/August! It's definitely feeling fall-ish but we are lucky to still have mostly sunny weather though cooler in the early mornings and at nights.
  • my current stitching project! A Happy Dance.
Here is Sampler Sisters, physically the largest piece I've ever stitched though an easy stitch.

Sampler Sisters of the Thread
by Primitive Needle
on 35 ct HDF linen (pale grey)

You can double click on the photo for a better look. I did change the design in 2 spots. The first one was by accident. The second set of alphabets - well, I goofed on my starting point and when I realized this the next day I'd already stitched 3/4 of that row so I just decided to improvise instead of frog. The second change is that I shortened the bottom of the design. You'll see what I mean if you compare it with the original, which you can see a couple of posts back.

I love this angel...
and the girl and horse.

This was a really fun stitch! I'm really looking forward to Lisa's new designs coming next month!

I also finished stitching something for an exchange which I'm really happy about. I still have to finish it and fingers crossed, I'm trying to do something other than a pinkeep, so hopefully it will come out alright. No photos of it for awhile.

Some of you asked me what I do with the plums I pick besides (1) eating them as-is and (2) giving them away. Well, I freeze some for baking. What do I make you ask? Here's a sample -

Shortbread Pie
original recipe used apples but I substitute just about any fruit in season

It's my last day of 'freedom' and of course have tons to do. One of the things I want to do is to organize next projects so we'll see what I come up with next!

I will leave you with some late summer roses (second round of blooms) from my garden.
Thank you for stopping by! Have a good week! September, here we come!

Tuesday, 25 August 2009

Lovely things to tell you

OK, this isn't about Moi but I am excited to tell you about a couple of great happenings! Here I go with my lists!

(1) Jan at Belfont Notes is releasing her first design and she is doing a giveaway of the chart. (pick me please!) Anyway, here's a photo.
Rare Treasures
by Tree of Life Samplings

Isn't it wonderful? I hope for once I win something!

(2) Dear Stacy of Stacy Nash Primitives has started her own blog! Congratulations! She also has a new Halloween booklet out. I had just ordered Hollyhock Farm so will have to wait.

Lastly, I've been working on organizing the Friendship Tour today. I need help - this is a shout-out to a few stitchers who signed up for the Friendship Tour (now closed as we have close to 2 dozens signed up) but I don't see your email in your profile, and I cannot leave a comment on your blogs due to the comment setting.

Loraine, Gaynor, and Alice - could you please send me your email address? Thank you kindly!

That's it for this post. I'll be back later this week with more stitching progress. I hope you are getting lots of fun stitching time in! Bye for now.

Thursday, 20 August 2009

August Rush

It's the end of a crazy August, almost. I'm off the next week taking a well deserved break (read - exhausted from work). Work should be made illegal during the month of August, don't you think? (Oh you know I'm just kidding...)

This post was meant for last Sunday and it's only 4 days late!

Stitching progress

Sampler Sisters of the Thread
by Primitive Needle
Slowly getting there!

I love books!

(1) The Glass of Time by Michael Cox. I got the audio version from the library and was immediately mesmerized by the reader's voice belonging to Josephine Bailey. She is incredible. I kept wondering if there were actually more people reading the story because she could project so many different characters with her voice. Then I went onto Amazon and found that this is a sequel to...

(2) The Meaning of Night by Michael Cox. I have this book on my bookshelf. It's about 600 pages and I had stopped at 100 quite awhile ago. Anyway, I had to read it and I did it the same time as I was listening to The Glass of Time. So, I was totally immersed in Victorian England and these 2 glorious books. I love them. It's one story line with a mystery, lots of details and complexities in the plots, great characterizations...yum! I can't say enough but you get the picture! I am looking forward to Book #3 and the last of the trilogy.

(3) The Angel's Game by Carlos Ruiz Zafon. This was one of those 7 day Rapid Read loans from the library last weekend. I opened it on Saturday evening and finished at Sunday bedtime! I couldn't put it down. Like its predecessor The Shadow of the Wind, this book is based in Barcelona and one underlying theme is books - specifically The Cemetary of Forgotten Books. I love that idea and it gives you a glimpse as to the atmosphere of the stories - Gothic. I so enjoyed reading The Angel's Game, and now will have to re-read The Shadow of the Wind! I just found out the author has planned 4 books all centered around The Cemetary of Forgotten Books, but each stands as a story onto its own. It's so nice to think there's more to come!

I must apologize that I am not doing justice to these wonderful books by my words. I'm too tired to do a good job. I'd just wanted to tell you about them so you might want to check them out. Now that I've been spoiled with three good books in a row, everything else I've picked up since pale by comparison.

Oh, and people asked me what I thought of The Physick Book of Deliverance Dane. Here it is - I was very disappointed. Need I say more?

Bountiful August

It's raining plums!
Yummy Italian plums!

So, that's my belated post. I had thought about dropping out for awhile but I think if I made a break from posting, I might never get back here! Maybe I will post more while I'm off, but first I have to recharge my batteries!

Hope you are doing well, and that it's raining, if not plums, then good fortunes! Thank you for stopping by and I enjoy finding your comments waiting for me when I come home from work. They put a smile on this tired face! :-) Byeee.

Sunday, 9 August 2009

Summer Ramblings

1) Was it something I said?
...coz since the last post, the weather has cooled down a lot. It was actually very pleasant in the low 20's last week so you can sleep easily at night! Today the rain has started and I'm actually thankful for it as the plants need it very much! Also, we've had wild fires throughout the province for the last month so I'm hoping that we get lots of rain in those areas to help with the fires. Plus, a group of fire-fighters from Austrialia and New Zealand have arrived. Our province sent firefighters in February to help with the Victoria fires so now they are returning the favour, which is so great!
another David Austen Rose - Strawberry Fields, snapped before the rain came!

2) Melissa lives here, Michelle does not.
Thank you for all the lovely comments about the Friendship Sampler on the last post. While I have been called Michelle IRL and in the blog comments every now and then, the last posts had Michelle all over it! Michelle is a lovely name, but it isn't mine! ;-) But then, Michelle is the name of the gorgeous US First Lady, so it ain't so bad! We do have one thing in common, our height!

3) On next projects.
Some of you asked me what I was going to stitch next after Friendship Sampler. I thought I was really clever and organized and had lined up two small projects to stitch. I had set up the linen and started on Sheepish Designs' American Beauty, but on light linen. However, after about an hour or so of stitching it, I had to stop. It didn't feel right!

I'm sure that's happened to you too. In this case, I had to stop and reconsider. It's actually the first time it's happened to me so early in the stitching. I finally decided on Sampler Sisters of the Thread by Primitive Needle. Here's a photo from Lisa's blog.

Here's a bit of progress on my start.

Perhaps I felt the clouds and rain coming. It is just perfect for me to stitch right now. After all the bright colours and colour changes in Friendship Sampler, apparently my inner stitching self craved something completely different, and this was it! I hope you can see from the second photo that there are lovely colours but they are more subtle. I'm also stitching with 1 thread over 2 on 35 ct HDF linen.

So, I'd like to know, dear stitchers, how many projects have you got kitted up ready to go? And how do you decide on the next project to stitch? Do you stick with a list, or do you pick one project at a time?

4) Current audio book
"The Physick Book of Deliverance Dane" by Katherine Howe. It is about the Salem Witch Trials, and the topic just seems perfect for stitching something by Primitive Needle. As you know, the designer, Lisa, has her blog called Witch Stitches. The header on her blog says "The Witch is In".

5) Friendship Tour
Wow, I was very surprised by the response. I have about 2 dozen people interested in doing this. Now I have to figure out how to make it happen, so bear with me. Most of you who showed an interest have your email address in your blog profile and that's fine you don't need to send me any more info. If you have a blog but no email attached in your profile, could you just send me an email so I know how to reach you? You can find my email address in my profile on this blog. Stay tuned for more details.

6) How can you tell...
...I write lists?

Another Sunday / weekly post is done. Thank you for dropping by. I would love to hear about your project selection 'method' if you have one. Sometimes it reminds me of the old Johnny Carson swami routine, where he took a envelope with an answer concealed inside. He then held it to his head to predict the answer. Similarly, it's like I have to take the next design/threads/linen combo, hold them to my heart and ask "are you the one?"

Monday, 3 August 2009

The Dog Days of Summer

We have been in a record breaking (read 'not-since-decades') heat wave. Last week it peaked at around 35 C (95 F). That's very hot for this part of the country! But I'm not complaining! I would rather have the heat and sun than the rain and chill, which we have had our share of in past summers.

All I needed to do was to make sure we water our gardens, like so...!

One watering can for you, one watering can for me, and the flowers will keep on blooming.

I love the girls' outfits, don't you?
The funky bolero jacket over a very gypsy skirt.

I love this polka dotted number with the apron, very 'me'.

Stitching this beauty was a challenge, with all the colour changes and the heat wave. I now understand when some of you have said it was too hot to stitch! At 3pm today, I put down my needle and can gaze with satisfaction. I love this piece!

Friendship Sampler
by Birds of a Feather

While I stitched this, I listened to The Help by Kathryn Stockett. It is absolutely superb! Please go and get the book to read or listen to. I think I heard about this on Nicole's and Kellie's blog awhile ago. It is such a great story, and is beautifully narrated. While the topic is a difficult one to listen to (at least for me) - about the civil rights struggle in the 1960's in the US - it is such a great story. In the case of the audio book, it was mainly narrated by 3 women and they did such a great job. The story was mesmerizing.

Well, I am so happy that I have had the good fortune to get my hands on the Friendship Sampler (thanks again to my stitching pal) and that it's now finished. While I was "putting out the call" for the chart to the Stitching Universe a few months ago, I had pledged this:

"If I can get hold of this OOP chart, I will do a Travelling Friendship Tour with this chart." So, if you are interested please leave a comment and I'll see what we can arrange!

Lastly, I leave you a funny photo of Mr Julius wanting to "get in the frame" while I was setting up the shot. He moved so fast. Luckily I stopped him before he ran off with it. He has a funny habit of taking things down to his 'lair'. When my mom was visiting, he took one of her shoes (plastic Croc) downstairs and it took us awhile to figure out where it went!

Oh, almost forgot - this is the last thing I promise! Please go and wish Terri a Happy 50th! Her Birthday is Aug 5 and she's also starting a SAL on SB's Sail Away too. I'm sure she would love to get Happy Birthday comments! I've gotten to know Terri a bit since starting my blog - she's such a nice person! Happy 50th, young lady!

I can't hang around my longer. My office is upstairs and I'm melting! Till next time, thank you for visiting and sharing your thoughts. Enjoy the week!