Thursday, November 29, 2012

An Award

Wow!! Thank you Monica for such an honor!! I spend most of my time chronicling what it is I do so I don't forget what I worked on and how long it took me, and so that there is a record of my "accomplishments" for my children. It's been really great for me to receive comments from you, and I cannot put into words how awesome it is for me to have your support and encouragement. 

So, Monica gave me this Liebster Award which I am going to proudly display on my sidebar. And, of course, there are some rules to follow with this:

Liebster is a German word meaning dearest, favorite or beloved. Liebster Awards are given by bloggers to other bloggers who have fewer than 200 followers, to spread the word and help newer bloggers gain wider recognition. 

1. Choose 5 bloggers with fewer than 200 followers to award the Liebster to.

2. Show thanks to the blogger who awarded the Liebster to you by linking back to their blog. 

3.  Post the award on your blog. List the bloggers you are giving awards to, with links to their sites, and comment on their blog to let them know that you have given them the award.

It was not easy for me to pick five blogs to give the award to. My first problem is that all of my "favorites" are linked to my home page, so I had to open that blog first and then go through the list. My first couple choices are very popular, so they didn't qualify, but I quickly found my list of 5:

1. Leslie at Stitching Under the Sea
2. Monique at Cross Stitch Ramblings
3. Shaunterria at Ca11i0pe's Reviews and Stitching News
4. Pull the Other Thread
5. Rosie at ishkabibble

To everyone who visits and especially those who comment - thank you always for visiting. I love seeing what everyone is working on! I learn new tips and tricks, and I'm always happy to find a new stash item. There are days when I'm not inspired to stitch, but I will peruse the Web and look at your blogs with all of your beautiful work, and then I find my muse again and pick up my own needle. It's a lot of time and work to maintain these sites, but I always love that we do it!

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

A Hostess Gift: Wine Charm

I needed to get a gift done for my friend - not only is it her turn to host Thanksgiving, but I had done a post to have people get a handmade gift from me this year and she was one. I spent months trying to figure out to make each person, and then I saw the latest Cross Stitch and Needlework Magazine - PERFECT!!
 So, I sat down last night and stitched the Christmas Tree. It only took an hour and a half to stitch it (it would have been less if I hadn't added an extra row and had to frog). 

This morning, I used Aleene's Stiffen Quik on the white felt in order to stiffen it to hold the backside of the charm. I had received my order from Fusion Beads which included the Sterling Silver Beading Hoop, the jump rings and the 3mm Swarovski Elements Crystal Mix- Christmas blend. 

I put everything together based on the picture, and added the crystals. I decided to add the jump rings prior to gluing the felt on the back. I didn't see how I would be able to add the jump rings through the felt and it seemed the better way. 

So, in just a few hours, I have a great little gift to give my friend. Even my hubby has decided that he likes the looks of these and has requested a custom order for his own Wine Charm.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

IHSW Update

The weekend for stitching came to an end. I already posted my progress on the Month of December which kicked off the IHSW weekend. How cool to have a finish during the Stitching Weekend!!

I did not get much time to stitch for the rest of the weekend. I'm stuck having to work on the week off in order to prepare for a State Audit, so I wanted to focus on getting the work done, but I did manage to get a little progress done on the Baby Sampler:

Some frogging was necessary on the collar, but the jack-in-the-box is coming along nicely. My daughter, for whom this is being made, has been watching my progress very carefully. She is asking questions about what I'm working on and when I think I'll me done. It's cute and fun for her to see something for her come to life.

Blog Hop # 12: Being Thankful

Stitching the Night Away Stitching Bloggers Blog Hop

This prompt for #12 is:  
When it comes to the stitching part of your life, what are you most thankful for?

Wow! There is so much for me to be thankful for, and given that this week is Thanksgiving, I find myself more reflective than normal. House, food, family, love, my dreams and goals - that's just a small list of things I am thankful for. 

However, to include my stitching in this opens up an entirely new train of thoughts. I'm grateful that I have a hobby that I can afford. Being able to fund my passion is always a great thing. 

I am so thankful that my stitching allows me to get away from all of the stress and chaos that goes on around me. I love that I not only have the ability to "unplug" from the world, but I am able to create something. It's a great feeling to see the end result of my time and have decorations or presents for others.

Another thing I am thankful for is the people I have met. While most people do not stay in my life and there are countless others I do not know because of Facebook, it is great to chat with others who have the same hobby and learn new techniques, tips, and get information on projects I never knew existed. While it is a "faceless" group of people that I will probably never meet in person, it has been great for me to see that their lives are similar to my own. It's always helpful to know you are not the only one going through trials, and again, to share an outlet for this stress is great!

I've moved a number of times, but only once was there a Local Needlework Shop. It did help me to acclimate to the new area, but I have found that just having my supplies in my new home or location helps tremendously especially since cross-stitching is not a big thing here in California. There just aren't many LNS. I just love being able to have "my" things hear me, and again, I'm thankful to have the items as well as the comfort of the hobby. I remember when I had to give up everything after leaving my now ex-husband. It was horrible to lose so many of my possessions, but not having anything to stitch really made it more difficult for me when I obtained my own apartment again. I was so thankful and happy to make my first purchase again after the separation, and I realized quickly how much easier it was to adjust to the new life and it gave me the ability to help my daughters more with their transition as well.  (I have made up for all of the lost stitching supplies and now have more than what I lost - the loss of my girls' baby pictures is still something that grates, but I've learned to deal with it.)

Which brings me to my ultimate "Thanks" - for so many reasons, I am thankful to Ken. Without him, I would not have the "things" that I desire in life but his love and total support makes my life enjoyable and possible. He and I have many similar interests, but while he does not try stitching himself, he is supportive of my hobby as I am his of wood working. It's great to know that I can count on him for anything and everything, but it's also great to be able to enjoy my hobby with him supporting me from the sidelines.

I can't wait to see what others have written about this prompt....

Visit all the blogs in this round of the Stitching the Night Away Stitching Blogger Blog Hop:
Find the instructions on how to participate in this round by clicking here.

Saturday, November 17, 2012

An Early IHSW

It was just the beginning of the International Hermit and Stitch Weekend, but I have a finish to start it off. My December Stockings is complete and going in the frame to wait for the month to start!

Now, I hope to concentrate on the baby sampler for the rest of the weekend!

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

November TUSAL

Here is my latest TUSAL picture:
I've been working hard to get each of my little month's done resulting in the fun changes in the colors for each season in my jar.

Monday, November 12, 2012

December Prep

It was a long weekend to honor the sacrifice made by our Military this weekend, and with that comes my girls all home and camping out in my living room. They take over control of the television, the dining room table, etc. which makes it difficult for  me to spread out and do the stuff that I want such as working on the large stitching project.  So, I put Netflix on my computer in my office and started the smaller project for the Month of December:
After a few episodes of Frasier, this was what I accomplished:

A really cool plus for the weekend was my middle son has suddenly taken an interest in what it is that I do (step-son, but I usually don't make the differentiation). He was watching me go through some patterns and he started asking questions. After some time, it seems that he realizes now the amount of time and energy that goes into this, and he's seeing everything a bit differently. I was really surprised by the change, and very happy with his interest. I wonder if I can get him to learn to cross-stitch now. Hmmmm......

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

By Request...For Bonnie

Ahhhhhh, now that I have my house back in order (we had the interior painted and were displaced for a week), I was able to find my stitching supplies, and I took a couple pictures of my frogger for Bonnie who mentioned she would like to see a picture of it. 

It's not very large; just 4 1/2 inches from the tip of the flower to the tip of the needle. However, this little gem has been completely invaluable.  Again, mine was made for me by Stephanie Bishop who also does her own hand-dyed fabrics, so if you are interested in one of these, you can contact her through her page on Facebook:

Or, she has her email through her website: 

I believe that I paid $4 for mine, and it was shipped with my fabric order. I have not been tearing floss or fabric when I pull stitches out, which has saved me valuable time and money. If I used one of the embroidery needles, I inevitably had to re-do a lot more than the portion that I originally intended.  None of us like to "Frog", but this little do-dad really helps when you have to.

Monday, November 5, 2012

Blog Hop #11: Interesting Aquisitions

Stitching the Night Away Stitching Bloggers Blog Hop

The prompt for this Hop is: What has been your most unusual or most interesting stash acquisition to date?

I have sat in my office for a couple days and looked at everything that I own. There is nothing in my stash that would be considered "interesting" or "unusual." I have never received a stash gift other than from my hubby (and he was good about learning where my wish lists are), and I have seen other stitchers who have far more interesting stories and items. 

The most unusual thing I purchased is called a frogger. It's a blunt needle with a beaded FOB, and I purchased it from the amazing and talented Stephanie Bishop of Steph's Fabbies. I never thought that this would be a useful tool, but it has become invaluable to me as I had to pull stitches out - the floss doesn't break and I don't tear the fabric. Yay!!

I will credit all of the amazing stitchers out there for my intense growth of stash over the last year: from charts I never thought I could possibly do myself to notions and specialty floss to just great tips and tricks! Thank you for always sharing what you know and helping me to be a better stitcher!

Visit all the blogs in this round of the Stitching the Night Away Stitching Blogger Blog Hop:
Find the instructions on how to participate in this round by clicking here.

Thursday, November 1, 2012

November - ready in time!

I love it when I'm able to get things done in the time that I "allow" myself. Even with a very busy schedule this last week, I managed to squeak out a finish on my Month of November and I was able to get it framed and put out with the November/Thanksgiving decorations this morning.
 Outlining started
 Finished the wheat and beaded
Whew! Now, I can concentrate on finishing the baby sampler, and I'll hopefully have it done so I can work on the Month of December without having to interrupt the sampler.