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Friday, 26 February 2010

The Happy Couple

Since my last post, I haven't been feeling great - maybe it's to do with the weather. I haven't done as much stitching as I would've liked, but here's my progress on the SAL with Jane. I need to add some flowers quick as it's looking quite dull! 

Here, at least, is the happy couple! I feel like the branches are pointing at each of them, here's Wilma, and here's Fred.


I had to swap out a couple of colours as they were too light for my linen.  As much as the photo makes the linen look dark, it's actually a light cream colour.  I had to darken the colours used on the guy's shirt and for the apron and pantaloons.  I think the pantaloons are a hoot! 

This has been a great week for presents from other stitchers. I won a giveaway on Eva's blog. She was giving away the beautiful pink crocheted fob, but she included lots of other goodies in with the package. It is also the first biscornu I've ever received! Her work is beautiful. Thank you so much, Eva, for your generosity! 


Speaking of giveaways, Terri has a great one for her one year  blogoversary! It's always a pleasure to visit Terri's blog and you will usually leave there with tears of laughter! (That was meant as a compliment!)

Lastly, as we head towards the end of the Winter Olympics, let me share with you a piece of creative Olympic 'art'.  Someone in the neighbourhood decorated this traffic circle with a figure skater.  Isn't that great?



I am anxiously waiting for my new Blackbird Designs goodies from Market but I have not even heard a peep from the ONS so I'm not sure what's happening.  I threatened Margaret that if she finishes stitching anything from the book before I even receive mine, she will be in big trouble! :-)

Thank you for stopping by and thank you for your concerns re my dental saga! I'll let you know when it has a happy ending! Have a wonderful weekend!

Tuesday, 23 February 2010

It's all about Balance

Why is it all about Balance, you ask? Hmmm, we'll figure that out at the end of the post. 

Yesterday morning I had a dental cleaning appointment. Now, anytime I have to go near the dental office, my heartrate usually goes up a few notches depending on what it is I'm having done. Being as it was a dental cleaning I told myself to calm down. The only thing was my previous hygenist, a very good one (as in gentle), moved out of the city last year and I was now going to have somebody brand new. Can you guess the rest of the story? 

I won't go into details but suffice to say I need to look for someone with a much gentler touch. I was pretty stressed out from that, and also the fact they said I will need a crown sometime soon which will cost around $1200! I left there shell-shocked from the pain suffered and the looming costs to come! 

When I got home, the stash fairy had left me something via the post. 


The stash fairy's name is Becky! She is so sweet. One day she emailed me and said "Hey you! I've just ordered 2 charts from your wishlist and they are on their way to you!"  I was in shock, pleasant shock but still in shock! I asked her why. She said "just because!"  Well, what can you do? I thanked her graciously and did a happy dance! Thank you, Becky! Not only for me, but as you all know she is very generous stitcher! 

The stash took away a bit of the sting from the dental visit! 

Here's an update on my SAL with Jane.  

We hadn't planned on it but she worked on the left side, and I started with the right. So while I have the little man done, she has stitched the woman along with the flowers on the left.  If you read her blog post, you can see that she mentioned that the designer of this piece, Brenda, posted about this SAL on her blog

Brenda, if you are reading this, I just want to thank you for mentioning our SAL. I can't leave a comment on your blog just because of the comment setting (comments below post). It's the bane of my blogging existence!

Jane and I are just zipping along merrily on this SAL. 

I haven't mentioned much about the Winter Olympics even though it's being held here.I'm not that up-to-date with sports to really talk about the events though there were lots of great moments.  However, there are two things I want to say:

1. Loved the ice skating/dancing finals last night. The young Canadian couple won gold and was a dream to watch. It was amazing! 

2. Check out this video on these amazing rock sculptures someone did on the beach here. It's a 5 minute video but it's amazing how this man manages to balance rocks one upon the other. The last bit will amaze you, I promise! 

I guess that was the bit about "balance". 

Thanks to KarenV last time for pointing out that ABC Stitch Therapy had the latest Nashville releases on their site. I did go and have a look  and found more goodies! It never ends...which is, honestly, a good thing! 

Thank you for visiting. I may report to those groaning over my spring weather report that it's overcast today with rain in the forecast. And the price to pay for the sudden spring weather is the start of hay fever! ach-oooo!

Sunday, 21 February 2010

SALing along with Miss Jane

Good morning! It's a fine Sunday morning in Olympic-land. People in this city are living in some kind of weird happy bubble, whether locals or visitors because the weather is so fine! (No, I'm not rubbing it in.)

For me, I try to avoid the crowds. My Olympic event yesterday was going to Michael's as they had a "20% off entire purchase" sale so I made a list of DMC floss for 10 projects and headed out.  I got most of what I'd wanted which was a pleasant suprise. Then I sat in front of the TV and sorted! 

Worthy of a Gold Medal, eh? ;-)

On the stitching front, I started a SAL with Jane on Be Kind and Be True, by With Thy Needle and Thread.  Now, I'm fortunate that Jane is my partner as she is great with displaying her photos, artfully arranging them on her blog.  The reasoning in my mind is I can always tell you "Mine looks just like Jane's! Go and look at her blog!" On the other hand, I know that my photos will pale by comparison to hers! ;-)

We are both starting from the bottom of the design. I am a bit more ahead of Jane's because she didn't stitch yesterday, but we are going to try and keep pace with each other. 

 
I am stitching on a piece of 35 count HDF linen (no name). It is a bit more in the yellow-brown tones that the WDW Linen that Jane is using.   This is a lovely stitch and I am really enjoying it.

Still quiet on the Nashville Market front, don't you think? I really want to get my hands on the Blackbird Design book! 

I will leave you with some sunshine in a tulip to brighten your day and mine!

Thank you once again for stopping by. Your wonderful comments last time left me with big smiles! Enjoy the rest of the weekend!

Thursday, 18 February 2010

Five Lollipop Flowers

Hello there, my friends! Finally, I have finished stitching Birds of a Feather! This one seemed to have taken me longer than ever. Blame the stitcher, not the design! 

 

It just dawned on me that I could have stitched those five lollipop flowers in the colours of the Olympic rings! Wouldn't that have been appropriate for what's going on right now?! ...no, I was just kidding! 

Here she is, all finished!

 Birds of a Feather
by Blackbird Designs
Fibers: NPI silks and 35 ct Parchment (WDW)

I substituted  a couple floss colours so that they are slightly more subdued.  I used 573 for 534 (red) and 523 for 525 (blue). Near the end I just changed colours here and there just because I felt like it! There are some mistakes in the charting so you will need to check against the photo to decide what colour to use sometimes.

I am very happy to have gotten this done today as tomorrow Jane and I are starting our SAL on Be Kind and Be True.  I am still mucking about trying to decide on the linen to use so we shall see what I end up with! I do so love the WDW Parchment but if I use it too often it will get boring! 

On another happy note, I have finished stitching both exchanges. I have finished the finishing for one, and hopefully will get the other finished done this week as well.  I always feel like celebrating when I've made deadlines! (Annemarie, are you twitching yet?)

So, now, do you have a funny "waiting room" feeling? You know, it's really quiet, and everyone keeps flipping the magazine pages, and you are waiting to see who...what's all coming out from the Nashville Market! You know a lot of the shopkeepers have closed shop and are en route to Nashville today so no word for, hmmm, at least two days? Argh!  For those in the US near a LNS at least you can go and shop next week!  For the rest of us, we'll just have to wait patiently online to see the photos and news as they are posted. *sigh* Yup, waiting room syndrome. Twiddling of one's thumbs. Legs doing that impatient jig. Constantly checking websites for updates. Sad, isn't it? ;-)

Have you got a must-have list from the Market already? I'm thinking definitely the Blackbird design book, the latest Goode Huswife book, and...?

Thank you for stopping by and thank you for your comments. It makes me feel that I have good reason for keeping this blog going! Take care!

(whisper - I can't believe it but the cherry trees have started blooming this week!)


Friday, 12 February 2010

Go Canada Go!

As the Winter Olympics prepares for its grand opening ceremonies, I have to do my little patriotic bit and wave the flag and say "Go Canada Go!". 

The excitement of having the Olympics in our home town has been building. It is nice to see. The kids especially seem very excited as the Olympic torch is relayed from community to community.  We, like a lot of the locals, have our flag out in front of our house. Some cars have little flags sticking out their windows. I always smile when I see that. 

I hope it will be go smoothly, with fun and good competition all around.
 
o   o
o   o   o

Now, onto some stitchy updates. Here are the two remaining items I had framed recently. 


 Sarah Salter
by Sheepish Designs

I was lucky to have bought this frame on sale before and was able to re-use it for Sarah Salter. In its previous life, it housed a 'greeting card' art print, hence the reason for the sale!

 

My Betrothed Sampler
by Birds of a Feather

I love this frame. It's so unusual. It reminds me of uneven cobblestones, which somehow goes with the design of this piece.  I have hung it up with Tulip for my Love from last year. 
 

And that's all my framing for awhile! Thank you for all your compliments about my new sampler wall. (Oh shucks, blushing and all!) Can I share with you a couple of tips how I got to start mine?
  1. Keep similar frames together - e.g. all brown, all gold. I got this tip from one of the decorating shows. 
  2. Try to pick one piece that's a focal point, then build a collection around it. 
I have to thank my DH for actually helping to design the first sampler wall.  I had all my pieces out and had trouble putting a 'collection' together and he came along and started moving pieces around, and actually came up with the final design! Thanks honey!
(By no means am I saying this is THE way to do it, but it was how I did mine.)

Thank you for your visits and especially that I had 39 comments in one post - I think that's the most for me (not counting giveaway posts). I always enjoy reading your comments even if it's to say 'hey, I hear ya!'

Have a lovely weekend. Happy Valentine's Day! Happy Chinese New Year too on Sunday! It'll be the Year of the Tiger!  ...and of course, "Go Canada Go!"

Tuesday, 9 February 2010

New Sampler Wall

Here is the second installment of the framed pieces:

 Windmill Sampler
by Examplar from the Heart
The photo does not do it justice. The frame is a deep gold-y colour and really brings out those tones from the sampler. 
A Weary World Rejoices
by Shakespeare's Peddler 

You may remember that I'd shown you an old Cricket Collection piece stitched on aida that was in this frame. Well, I'm so glad I re-used that frame for this piece. I just love how this turned out, and this became the focal point to build my new sampler wall. 

And now, here's a new Sampler wall of smaller pieces that I gathered together. Except for the small piece in the lower right hand corner, all the pieces were stitched in 2009.

New Sampler Wall 2010

Coincidentally this wall is directly opposite the other Sampler Wall that I built last year. This one is in our living room and the other is in the hallway.

Thank you for all your comments about the framed pieces and sharing my giddiness with stash-happiness with me!  I'll be back soon with the last two pieces of the framing.

I hope for all of you snowed under in the U.S. that you are keeping safe and warm and able to use it as an excuse to stitch to your hearts' content! Till next time, thank you for stopping by! 

Friday, 5 February 2010

Giddy!

As I write this, it's a couple of hours after my last post. Mr Postman did arrive and I was giddy with excitement. You see, I had won Jolene's giveaway and she had emailed me a couple of days ago concerned that I hadn't received it. But eh, voila, zee treasures!

Jolene had hosted a giveaway of 10 grab bags that she had picked up at Shepherd's Bush in January. She enclosed yummy chocolates too. In the enclosed card, she wrote:

Life is like a box of chocolates, you never know what you are gonna get. Enjoy your mystery bag of patterns. Hopefully you will find at least one "keeper".

As I open the package of 10 charts, I would go 'no', hmmm 'maybe' as to whether I would stitch each one. When I got to the last one my heart leapt up. Can you guess from the photo above which started the pitter-patter?


It's an A&E chart! I think I saw this on Siobhan's blog last year and knew it was oop. I got bitten by the A&E bug from seeing all her A&E. I guess this is a sign!

Thank you so much, Jolene! You are very generous with your giveaways and this one has given me a lot of joy!

The other package I received was from Em-lis.
I started off with just wanting to buy Mary Corey to add to my A&E collection, then found all these other charts for sale. What's a gal to do? I especially love Lady and the Flower at the bottom.

Lastly, I want to mention this giveaway at Andrea's and it's one with a purpose. It's connected to helping women help themselves in the recovery of life in Haiti. You can read about it at Haiti by Hand. Because I was doing a much of clean-up earlier in January I had put aside things like DMC floss, beads for donating. This is the perfect venue so I am happy I can send these to those who will benefit from them.

So now I will say 'adieu' and 'merci beaucoup' for stopping by. A bientot, mes amis!

A Stitchy Update

Hello there! I have been busy with other things and haven't stitched as much as I would have liked. Also, it seems to be an uphill journey on Birds of a Feather, but here's some progress.

Last time it looked like this:
Now, it looks like this:

Yesterday I put this aside for awhile as I have some exchanges to do. However, I do have some stitchy things to show you. I took 6 pieces to the framers. I will spread out showing them to you over the next 2 weeks as I don't think I will have any other stitching to show you in the meantime!

Quaker House
by Blackbird Designs

The Simple Things
by Blackbird Designs

Both these two pieces use new frames that my framer got in. They are two different shades of green but both were used effectively with each design. I normally gravitate to the brown older-looking frames with designs on them. This time, my framer suggested that I branch out and try this new colour series. They turned out quite nicely!


I placed The Simple Things with another Blackbird Design piece called August Melon. Whether they will stay together in the future is a mystery. When I get new framed pieces I like to see whether I can get a new grouping made with older framed pieces. I can tell you now I have a new sampler wall, but you will have to wait till next week before you see it!

Thank you to everyone who left a comment on the post about Kindle vs i-Pad. It was most interesting to read. The people who own Kindles seem to love them. I agree that waiting at least 6 months, maybe a year, to buy an i-Pad is a good idea. New technologies always require kinks to be worked out. One particular comment stayed with me though, and that was from Berit:

"Get a Kindle (this from a Mac user) I have the first version of Kindle, and if you are planning to read (primary goal), then the kindle wins hands down thanks the fact that it works using reflective light (eink) rather than transmissive light (LED or LCD), which is immeasurably better for the eyes.

This ipad (a friend of mine who works at the apple store and I have dubbed it the iMaxi!) is too little device for the money, and anyone who possibly has the patience should wait for them to work out the *MANY* kinks and see if they still want it in 8 months to a year when version 2 hits. Plus, as it doesn't start shipping for 60 days yet, you'll be in luck if you get one before 6 months are out. Rabid appleites are, well, rabid.
"

The idea of one gadget that will do everything, while appealing, is not likely. It may meet 80% of the requirements but the 20% are things you may not want to live me. It makes sense if you want something primarily to read, you want it to be easy on the eyes. Thanks Berit for pointing that out!

I'm feeling a bit blue - I woke up in the middle of the night with a scratchy throat and stuffed up nose...but worse than that, the postman has NOT come yet today! This is my last chance this week to get long awaited for stashy stuff and if he/she does not come, another wait till Monday! Agony. Boo-hoo! You know the feeling! ;-)

Well, there are a few more hours to the postal day, so I will keep my fingers crossed!

Thank you, as always, for stopping by! Enjoy the weekend, whether you are into the Superbowl or not as there are a few stitchy sales around! Till next week, stay healthy and happy my friends!

Monday, 1 February 2010

Winner of Giveaway

February starts off with a winner. Natasha is the winner of the giveaway.

Natasha said:

Well happy 100th post :0) I would LOVE to enter for this I love that design and it is super sweet of you to add the floss AND fabric :)

For my birthday
1)I would LOVE to have a WHOLE set of DMC, never having to worry if I am out of a certain color 2) A nice big juicy steak :) 3) A new pair of ski pants

Thank you for a wonderful drawing


Congratulations Natasha. It turns out, when I read her blog, that her birthday was last Wednesday so a belated Happy Birthday to you as well and I hope some of your wishes came true! Please contact me with your address information.

Thank you to everyone who left comments on that post, whether you wanted the giveaway or not. I loved reading your birthday wishes! I hope they will come true for you this year!

I will be back with photos of framing soon! Have a good Monday!