Monday, February 21, 2011

My Sunday SAL

I started a new SAL on Sundays only with my oldest Yahoo group: Stitching_Sisters. Here is my first progress pic. It's "Haunted House" from the book 'Tis Halloween' by Blackbird Designs. This SAL is for Halloween, Thanksgiving, or autumn designs.

I spent Sunday watching 3 Lifetime movies as I stitched and did other things, like joining a new Yahoo Group for fans of Diana Gabaldon, the PhD author of the Outlander series and other books. The group is called OutlanderGathering, and it's fascinating, but you definitely have to love the books that are so involved they take 2.5 years for her to write. I just recently acquired the last of her books.

Last week was a stitching bust, as I'd taken out a UFO to work on, and a couple of days I didn'r get to stitch at all, but any progress I made except finishing a goldfinch has to be frogged because of being one stitch off, and there's no way I can make up for it. So much for a week's time. I've discovered I can no longer count!

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Stitching Group

On the 2nd Tuesday of every month, a group of 12 stitchers meet at our LNS and eat dinner together at different local restaurants, then we go to the shop and stitch and share local newspaper stories, TV programs, movies, books, etc., with a little gossip thrown in for good measure, LOL! It has been a rough winter here, so the group these last couple of months has been smaller. At Christmas, we don't go to dinner away, but bring in finger foods made at home and a wrapped handmade ornament. The girls who own the shop put numbers on the packages, and we draw numbers that match the ornaments. It's a really nice time each and every month. Here are a couple of pix of the last stitching meeting in February. I should have taken more pix of the actual shop. It's a large, really nice shop, full of goodies for every stitcher!

Wednesday, February 09, 2011

A Finish

This one was fought for! I don't know what it was about this little design, but I started it before Christmas and it would have gone by the way of my other UFO's if I hadn't persevered and finished it. I simply couldn't count on this one and kept making the same silly mistakes over and over. It was like I could not count. It's Little House Needlework's "Winter Wonderland." The smaller design is just a smaller portion of the same. They're each sewn to Mary Kathryn's Impie, Hattie, and Bea products.

This last picture is on the inside of the pin notebook. I just love how this set looks finished togeher! Too bad it's not going to be in season much longer, or is it? I've had enough winter to last the rest of my life!

I'm currently working on another Little House Needleworks design, "Winter Sampler." It's a UFO of mine, put away a year ago, and not knowing why, I soon found out. All you see in the link has had to be frogged and done over. Yes, I was heavily drugged when I started this one, so I have had to forgive myself for stitching what I did with one stitch off. I also stitched it with the Belle Soie Crescent Colours overdyed silks with one strand, and I saw it in my LNS with two strands and liked it better, so I'm using two strands now.

I'm thinking of using a rotation and have been asking a small Yahoo Group for their suggestions on how to rotate five projects---2 UFO's, an ornament a month, and two new projects. I'm up for suggestions. Two suggested a project each day, a couple of others suggested I'd get more progress done on a project for a week, then onto the 2nd, etc. Any ideas of yours? Please? If you have your own rotaion that works for you, would you kindly email me with ideas?

Wednesday, February 02, 2011

Winter Storm of 2011

There is a definite beauty to a severe winter storm, especially when there's been ice. Last night, before the snow, which is not nearly what was forecast for this East Central IL area, it was so beautiful, as I looked out into the darkness, it nearly took my breath away. The little light there was shone on the crusty snow from all the sleet and freezing rain, and the driveway was a glare of ice. Treacherous, yes, but I didn't have to go out because I had planned well in advance of the storm. It was worthy of beautiful photography, but I just don't have the knack, so I did my best with these shots:

This is looking out my back screened porch to the east. The screens were covered with ice. Only the youngest kitty, Annie, ventured onto the porch this morning. They're all indoor kitties, but she's unafraid of the elements. Normally, one can see the eighth green of the golf course from these windows.

In warmer weather, this is the eighth green, just east of our house. It's the raised part in the upper right of the picture.

Our house from the road in front across from the ninth fairway. Too bad I didn't capture the beautiful ice on the trees. There is a Japanese Maple near the front door that's just gorgeous with the ice.

A shot from the garage yesterday before the snow, just after the ice and sleet.

Standing outside of the vehicle, I got this crappy shot of the near end of fairway 9. There are houses along both sides and one of the many ponds up the left behind the houses. It's hard to see anything with my photography.

This is (in warmer weather) the number nine tee box with the backs of houses (our closest neighbors across the street) along the ninth fairway.

This is the top of a hill going along number 14. My best friend lives at the bottom of the hill. She's also a cross stitcher. Notice how the evergreens are drooping with the weight of the ice. but aren't they pretty?

This is the ninth green looking back down the fairway to the tee, a dog leg to the left. It was fun driving around the neighborhood to see the beauty of our winter storm. We built the house 21 years ago and have lived amidst the beauty of the changing seasons all that time, encountering many forms of wildlife (snakes and mice in the house - we have farmland behind our house) such as foxes, turtles, geese, beavers (a creek runs throughout the course), coyotes, tons of different birds, etc. I'll miss all that, but I'm ready to leave it all and live in a smaller house, all on one floor. Our basement is mostly finished, with an unfinished portion for storage, but there are 14 steps to our computers, my sewing room, a big family room, and a 3rd full bathroom. It's a lot to clean and is getting to the age that things need to be either done over or replaced. DH has a bad back and his golfing has seen better days and we both have osteoarthritis. I just recently had to have a knee replacement, and I'm so afraid of banging up my new knee. Besides all that, we're retired and on a fixed income, and property taxes are very high here. What we'd both like to do is to move into a certain neighborhood in town and buy a smaller, all brick (little maintenance) home on one level. We'd have to sell our golf cart and a whole lot of my stuff too, and I love it all. I can't bear to think of getting rid of any of my stuff! Maybe we'll hold out till we're ready for assisted living and sell the whole household of stuff. I can't even stand to think about it! I've bought a load of space bags to store all my Boyds Bears (and cats, and a multitude of other critters) because they're not in style any more, but I love 'em all so much, I can't stand to think of them stored in airtight plastic bags. So I keep them out, decorating my house. No one understands me, but they don't need to. I'm harmless..... and my house is a home.