Saturday, 30 June 2012

Elizabeth, Julius and the magic bubbles!

Lots to update you on today so let's get started!

First, some stitching! I've been stitching a lot to catch up on Elizabeth Savilles. The borders meet - sort of. I fudge everything with this sampler so I am just whistling as I go. Doesn't fit, no problem, let's fudge it!

I had fun with this basket on the left hand side. I took complete liberty with it and I like how the basket design itself worked out! It's different than anything I've seen before. It started off as "should I frog a lighter colour out or not?" then I tried weaving in a darker colour to fill in the basket and the rest just grew from there!

Here is how Elizabeth is looking! Oh, she is so pretty! (If I may say so myself!) 

Now I just want to get the flowers on the border done! They take quite a bit of time to do but I'm getting the hang of it.

Have you seen this cat toy? It's like a doughnut with a ball trapped inside. I showed the cats how to play with it. Daisy got bored quickly but Julius with all the boy testosterone, loves going crazy with it. The blurry photos are precisely because he was moving so fast!
 The concentration!

 Let's try a backward manoeuvr!
 Let's get the paw right in there and catch that rascally ball!
 How did I do Mom? I'm hungry now. Got some food for me?

Lastly, I want to update you on the work front. Thank you for all the lovely positive thoughts (I see bubbles everywhere!) and the prayers. Since last week, another job posting went up and I put my name in for that too. I have an interview on Tuesday morning! Cool, huh?!!! 

So, fingers crossed, we shall see what happens!  (Keep those positive thoughts zinging this way please!)

I will close with a shot of our beautiful yellow rose by our front entrance. Every time we walk by we are gifted with their wonderful fragrance!
Thank you again for your visits and supportive comments! For my fellow Canadians, Happy Canada Day tomorrow, rain or shine! For my friends across the border, Happy Fourth of July to you!  

Sunday, 24 June 2012

Changing Fortunes?

It's Sunday afternoon here, time slipping into the evening hours soon. Since last weekend we've initially had some 5 days of sunshine so I've been out in the garden catching up. Not much stitching was had but I will show you some garden photos including a new garden pal. I do have a favour to ask but I will wait till end of this post to do so. Don't worry, no money is involved!

The highlight this week is reacquainting myself with the wild and wonderful world of these wee succulents.  They are small and you really need to crouch down and look at them. When you do, you will see such little characters. I call them my new pets. I need to find names for them.

The first photo shows a big pot from last year. Some of these babies are in bloom!
Then in early spring I planted two smaller pots with more succulents...
Aren't they grand? They are so easy to please too and there is such a variety to choose from. So much so that when we had to rescue this long skinny planter, we decided that it was perfect for planting succulents in. I have named it our Succulent Trough!
This planter is rotting away and but we gave it some more life. It now sits on our sundeck and tucked under the roof line so it won't get wet too often. We shall see what it looks like come end of summer. This just got planted a few days ago and I'm really happy with it! 

Now, here's a new garden pal I found near our Benjamin Britten rose. Meet Danny the dragonfly. This guy likes to rest just in this particular rose bush because that's the only rose where I find him taking his snooze.
He's huge and a very handsome fella!  When I was a little girl,  a dragonfly landed on my head and I remembered screaming my head off! I still wouldn't want one to land on my head but I appreciate them a lot more! 

Now, you may be puzzled by the title of this post - "Changing Fortunes?"  My regular readers will know that I have been out of work for awhile now and not intentionally. On Thursday evening I checked my email and found a new "opportunity". Now these things have happened before but I just had a nice feeling, you know? 

So, fast forward a couple of hours later, I went to check my blog. I noticed on my blog list that Marly had just posted with a title "A Winner!".  Immediately I remembered I had put my name in the hat (as I love Marly's stuff!) and as I clicked to go to the post I was thinking "please let it be me!". I nearly fell off my chair when I saw my name! Then I'd thought "wait, girl, what if it's another Melissa?"  So, with hands shaking, I went to the post where everyone put their names in. Nope, I was the only Melissa. Even then I was not sure - that's an indication of my level of confidence in good fortunes these days! I emailed Marly who graciously and patiently informed me "no, you were the only one!"

I won! I won! I was beside myself with excitement! I'd thought, could my fortunes be changing? Gosh, I hope so. 

Here's the favour I would like to ask you to do, if you so choose - visualize a little thought bubble coming out of your head, like in a comics strip, with the words "If this is the right job for Melissa, please let her get the job!" Then wrap up the little thought bubble into a little thought airplane and zing it to me. That's it.  I don't ask for a prayer because they are precious and I save those requests for dire stuff like health crises, you know? This is just sending some cosmic cheering my way. Thank you! 

For that, I end with the lovely Leander rose, all peachy pink and girly!
It should be interesting what I will say in next week's post! Thanks for your visits! Have a wonderful week ahead!

Monday, 18 June 2012

200th Post has got to have more substance

Hello all. Thank you for all your sweet comments about Elizabeth S. I am so enjoying stitching her now and your encouragement certainly helped propel me along!

Today, I realized this is my 200th post. Lately I felt very rushed when I do my posting, and I never get to say all that I told myself I would say. So here is a post with a bit more content than usual:
  • Update on Elizabeth Savilles of course!
  • Blogger Comments settings (yes, once again)
  • Audio books recommendations
  • Garden stars this past week 
Stitching progress on Elizabeth:
Woo-hooo! I got a lot stitched since last week. That's the up side of rainy days! I am really enjoying stitching her now that I have decided I can make changes as I go. Some of those "missing" stitches may be "found" later too. I will see how I feel about filling in the little bits as I go. (ps I am so delighted with how she is looking!)
Blogger Comments Settings:
Some of us cannot leave comments on blogs where the comment setting is "embedded". I have mentioned this in the past but this problem has gotten worse as Blogger has made the "embedded" option as the default when people set up new blogs. 

I have looked but have not found "the cure" other than if the owner of the blog changes the setting to "pop up window" or "full page". I have let a few blog owners know and most are very happy to know this as they want people to be able to leave comments. You are under no obligation, of course to change this, but I thought I would let you know of this problem some of us have. 

To change the setting, when you are logged into Blogger and see your Dashboard, etc, select Settings on the left hand column, then select Post & Comments. Under Comments there is a drop down box. There you can select "Full Page" or "Pop Up Window" should you so choose.

If you have any questions, please email me. Thank you. 

Audio books recommendations:
Good stories to listen to always help my stitching! 

Garden stars this past week:

BIG, Bold, Beautiful pink Peonies followed by small, tiny-in-comparison Astrantia, then a photo of my small veggie patch.

Despite all the rain, the garden is still going! Some of the berries are behind schedule as there hasn't been enough sun but it will come. Today, as a matter of fact, is Sunny! How long it will stay is another matter.

Julius and Daisy say *yawn* It's Nap Time! Actually, it's always nap time for them! Cats are amazing at their abilities to snooze anywhere, anytime!

Any plans for summer vacation? We will be hanging around close to home me thinks. 

Thank you once again for your visits! Hope you are enjoying some nice weather. Have a great week!

Monday, 11 June 2012

If at first you don't suceed, Try, Try Again!

Good morning and good start of the week to you! Last week we had a lot of rain so I spent a lot of time really diving in and reorganizing my stash and then preparing linens for almost 40 projects. Yup, that's right, double digits - Four Oh. All different sizes from small to large to largest! In the process, I came face to face with my Nemesis, a project whose looks I loved but which I had a number of issues with way back in 2008. Here's the story:

The old story: back in 2008, actually when I started this blog I was still relatively new from returning to stitching. I loved the look of Elizabeth Savilles 1841 sampler as you can see here. I love the colours, just so Shabby Chic! 
When I first got the fibers, however, I was shocked at the colours chosen. The linen was Meadow Rue by Lakeside Linens which is a gorgeous fabric and I love it, but not for this. I had other issues with it and I put this down and picked it up a couple of times and this is where I stopped in 2009. 
That's Daisy helping me with the photo taking this morning! You can see it looks pretty nice but it just did not meet the picture in my head, which is a light linen with lots of pinks and reds.

So last week, I decided to "Try, Try again" but with a new start, with new fibers. I have been saving a piece of creamy linen mottled with some pink hues, just for this lady. I had struggled to figure out how to get the floss colours as per the photo on the chart but I finally decided the easiest was just to pull some colours I liked from my stash. Here's how Miss Savilles is looking.

I am experimenting with floss as I go but so far I have decided to use Belle Soie silks Attic Tea for the border vine, and Poison Apple for most of the flowers. 

The chart is another challenge I faced back in 2008. It is likely charted exactly as the old sampler appears with lots of broken lines (missing stitches).  I have decided that I will make some changes to this aspect as my mood dictates. I want to love stitching it and love having it hang on my wall! So far so good! I will not be defeated this time! ;-)  I also realize I was not a very experienced stitcher back in 2008 and that, most likely, contributed to my frustration when stitching E.S. as well.

Have you had your own version of a Stitching Nemesis? Do tell! 

Although we've had lots of rain, somehow some plants are still thriving. First is the David Austin rose "Golden Celebration".
Next up is the pretty "Benjamin Britten". The colour reminds me of red geraniums!
Finally, we have a clematis "Duchess of Edinburgh". It's funny that this year, the colour of it has turned to a pretty light lilac when it is in full bloom! So pretty!
That's it for another post! Thank you for all your visits and comments! They keep me motivated! 

Have a wonderful week!

Sunday, 3 June 2012

Nellie's Garden Revisited

Hello! Here we've had a lot of rain in the last week. We were starting to rust! However, it was really good for getting back to stitching and I can breathe a sigh of relief that this sampler is now Done! Yay! Hooray! 

Here is Nellie's Garden Revisited by Homespun Samplar in all her prettiness!

I used mostly the called for fibers, substituting only a little bit. I made small changes in the two pots of flowers and substituting a made-up name "Nellie Garten" for the designer's name. I thought of putting my name in but I liked the name "Nellie" and then added "Garten" as that's German for "garden".  I put in the date "1881" because that was the house number of a childhood home. 

I am very happy with it but I now don't want to stitch alphabets for awhile!!! 

Now onto my real "garten". Although we had lots of rain this last week, the plants are all parading in their glory. I have some amazing rose bushes full of blooms. I will give you a peek and show you more next week.

This next one was taken just before the heavy rain came. I had to push aside some branches as these were hidden inside the rose bush. Oh so pretty, like a painting! This one is "Strawberry Hill", a David Austin rose. 

This next rose is not as prolific but oh so pretty - Double Delight both in its appearance of two colours, and the surprise of a delicious fragrance! Aromatherapy! 
We have a huge trellis of this purple clematis that amazes us every year! Plants are often amazingly resilient and they try to be faithful every year!
It's heading into Sunday evening so that's it for this post! Thank you for visiting and I hope you've enjoyed both the garden on linen and the garden in bloom! ;-)

What's blooming in your garden?