January 10, 2019

The Kindness of Stitchers and the Amazing Gift I Received

I enjoy watching Flosstube from time to time.  It's fun to see what others are up to in their stitching life.  Instagram is also a great way to catch up with stitchers.  I have an Instagram account myself, but have never ventured into making a video, nor do I plan to do so.  Nonetheless, I do enjoy watching others' videos and adventures via YouTube.

While watching various videos I have enjoyed videos from Brian, or Blitstich as he is known on Instagram.  He has a great tutorial on diagonal parking if that interests you.  You can find that on his YouTube channel, along with so many other great ideas.

On one of his videos awhile back he announced a giveaway that included the Seedy Pumpkin Cottage pattern by Praiseworthy Stitches.  I submitted a comment to enter it, and lo and behold I won the giveaway! His generosity is amazing as he sent me not only the pattern, but also the corresponding hand dyed fabric and buttons /beads pack.  What a great surprise that was to receive such a package!

This amazing piece is definitely on my list of future stitching endeavors.  Our youngest grandson has always been thrilled by Halloween, so this would be a piece he would thoroughly enjoy seeing come to life.

Thanks so much, Brian, for your generosity.  Brian also has a blog so if you have the chance, please check it out along with his YouTube channel and Instagram  He does beautiful work, and he is a very generous person!

Here is what I won:

Thanks for stopping by today!

Happy Stitching to all of you. 

January 8, 2019

Post -Christmas Time and Sarah Braizear 1829

Pony Wall Decked Out- Village Arranged by our Grandsons

Stitched over the course of many years- How I love this series of patterns!

Our Very Old Front Windows- We opted to keep these old ones when we replaced. 
I took this photo on Christmas Night after all our family had left for the day. What a fun day we had together!

The holidays have come and gone.  Happy 2019 to all!

 It was a wonderful time for us, but I am always happy to put things away and start anew with the brand new year.  It feels bare when one first puts away the holiday decor, but for me it also feels less crowded and hence a bit more comfortable.  I wonder if I am one of the few with this outlook on holiday decor?

I have been working on Sarah Braizear 1829 and I am slowly making a small bit of progress.  I made it around the full length of the undulating vine border, but I had to be creative to get it to line up properly.  It is fine for now, hopefully my small miscount on stitches won't affect much in the middle of the border.  

I have been working on the lower left border and a bit of the interior tree found in that corner.  It is going slowly, but on the other hand this tree is large.  This large piece of flora corresponds with the overall girth of the project! 

I am fortunate to have a bit of time off work due to the holidays so there are more hours in the day to enjoy stitching.

Thanks for stopping by today, and please tell me what you have been working on lately.  :) 

Hurrah- I made it to the corner of this huge sampler!

The tree is growing each day! 

November 11, 2018

Update on Sarah

I have really fallen away from blogging. I miss reading blogs, and writing here as well.

Hopefully I can find more time to do so regularly.  I will make more time!

It used to be easier to post photos, and now it has gotten more complicated so I have fallen away a bit. I will strive to find an easier way to post them.

I have been working on Sarah Braizear 1829 since the beginning of June.  She has been my only focus except for a few times I worked on a small travel project.

I am plodding away on the border.  At this point I am not even half done with it, I'm sad to say.  Life is busy and afford little stitching time, that's for sure.

Here is photo that shows a bit of the border. 

I have completed the top part of it, except for the satin stitches.  I have decided also that from here on I will only do the outer green portion of the border flowers, with hopes of moving along quicker. I know that many are not doing to border first, but I am determined to do it this way to make sure it is correctly placed.  I have found some errors I have made, and fortunately was able to correct them.

Work keeps me very, very busy.  I wish life had more relaxation in it, but that is the nature of what I do. 

I did take some photos I wanted to share here.

First, here is a beautiful foggy morning in the fall where we live:

Secondly, I was amazed at this sunset one evening.  We do get pretty ones in the autumn here.

Thanks for stopping by today. 

July 19, 2018

Sarah Braizear 1829 Start

Summer is passing by so quickly.  We have taken a few lovely trips to various locations, and I am feeling very rested. 

Life has given me more time to stitch, and I appreciate it so much.

Here is some of my work on Sarah Braizear 1829. 

I am stitching this sampler on 36 count summer khaki linen using the called for AVAS silk threads. What great fun it is stitching this one!  I have also completed the undulating vine across the top of it, but unfortunately I just don't have a photo of that progress.  This is a large sampler with a stitched area of approximately 30 by 30 inches.

Finally, last week we visited Lake George in the Eastern Sierra Mountains of California.  What a lovely place it is!  It is incredibly idyllic and peaceful there.

Thanks for stopping by today. Happy Stitching!

May 27, 2018

Variegated Sampler Progress and Sarah Braizear 1829 Silks

It has been a busy few months.  I am a teacher and the school year will soon be over.  It has been a great year, but I am looking forward to vacation.  I miss my students at the end of each year, and thus at this time I feel that bittersweet emotion again.

My blogging life has been neglected. Alas, I am still here. I vow to return more often.

When I am not working and attending to life, I do find time to stitch here and there. I also watch Flosstube and watching these videos helps me indulge in my hobby when I am not actively involved in it.  On top of that I listen to Fibertalk as I commute to work, and that is enjoyable as well.

In the end of March we took a family road trip to Yosemite.  The beauty was amazing and awe inspiring. We hope to return there soon. Lovely place to go!

I also embarked on a new project around that time.  I love Instagram and get some stitching fix from hanging out there.  While looking through IG one day I happened upon a gal who was stitching a sampler I first adored thirty years ago.  It is the Variegated Sampler from the magazine CSCC.  The issue with the sampler is the March/April 1988 issue.  I recall wanting to stitch this piece when I first saw it, but you know how that goes.  So with the encouragement of other stitchers and the SAL group for the sampler on Facebook, I started this piece.

As luck would have it (and due to the encouragement of my then teenage daughter, who is now over thirty) I had purchased a package of variegated floss years ago.  I had all the required colors for the project.  I had used some of my variegated floss for various surface embroidery endeavors, so in the case of one color I relied on my DMC color chart.  I was able to match up some shades so that I could blend in colors and thus use just one strand of the 95 variegated color.  What fun it was to use that color chart, as always!

Here is my progress as of this morning:
And a bit more close up:

It has been a fun stitch!

In other stitchy news, I joined the Sarah Braizear 1829 SAL that was initiated by the podcast Fibertalk.  There's a group on facebook for it if this interests you.  I have my pattern now, as well as the silk floss.  Isn't it gorgeous?

I ordered and received my pattern and silk floss from Sassy Jacks Stitchery.  What a nice experience this has been! I am just awaiting the fabric, which is on back order. Evidently the SAL has created a worldwide shortage of silks and fabric.  I believe at this point the SAL group on facebook has over 600 members.  The pattern is gorgeous, and Sarah will be a big girl.  I will be stitching her on 36 count fabric, one thread over two.  I can't wait to get started and hope to get my fabric soon. We will see. If I don't, I sure have plenty of other projects that await my needle.

Thanks for stopping by today.

March 19, 2018

Houses of Hawk Run Hollow - WIP

It sure is slow progress on Houses of Hawk Run Hollow.

Last time I shared a photo it looked like
this .

I have worked on it just a tiny bit since I was mostly focusing on the mystery sampler, ornament, and life in general.  I wish I had more time to stitch, but someday when I retire I will, right?

Here is the piece as of last evening:

Thanks for stopping by today.

March 18, 2018

Finished Ornament and Progress on LK Christmas Mystery Piece

I finished this ornament by Little House Needleworks quite a while ago. Thus far it is not finished into an ornament, but here is the finished piece after stitching.

It was a lot of fun stitching this one!

I made a bit of progress on the LK Spirit of Christmas Mystery Sampler.  It's slowly coming along. Here is the last photo I took of it, before I did a bit more work:

I've also been working  a tiny bit on Houses of Hawk Run Hollow.  Photos are to come soon!

I wish I had  more time to stitch.  I keep figuring I will sometime, when I retire.

Happy Stitching to all,

January 27, 2018

LHN Ornament and Lizzie Kate Update

So I don't have stitching goals, but I did decide to veer off a bit from my very few WIPs. 

I started to partake in a facebook group's weekend stitchalong.  I spent a lovely evening looking through my various JCS ornament issue to find all the LHN and CCN patterns within the ones I have.  I found some very lovely ones, but decided to stitch one called Woodland Snowfall. 

I am stitching this little ornament on 36 count fabric, using one thread over two.  The fabric I am using is lighter than the model for this piece, so I thus changed some of the colors to better suit the fabric. 

I haven't had any time to stitch in almost two weeks now, but I hope to get to it soon.

Here it is-

I had time to work on the Lizzie Kate Spirit of Christmas Mystery Sampler last month.  I am now on Part Two of this fun holiday piece.

Here it is-

It is coming along rather nicely, and it is a fun stitch.

Today I went with a dear friend to meet another long time friend for a meal in a city a bit of a distance away.  After our meal, us two stitching friends returned to our local area and then visited our local stitching store.  I got to show her a piece that I adore called Fractur Flowers by La D Da.

 I had  bought the pattern earlier this week, and it is thus added to my large list of  STD "stitching to be done" projects.  I had suggested the term STD one time to a facebook group where the administrators asked for stitching acronyms, but for some reason my suggestion wasn't added to their list. I thought it was kind of a fun term, but I guess it could offend some. I thought too that it had a double meaning as well because STDs (stitching to be done) tend to be infectious, and others seem to 'catch' them too. Enough on that! 

Here is a photo of it, although the shop had a model and pictures truly do not do this beauty justice!

Thanks for stopping by today, and happy stitching! 

January 3, 2018

New Year Greetings, Stoney Creek, & Non-Goals

Happy New Year.  Here's to a great 2018 for all of us!

The holiday season has come and gone. It has been a VERY busy and fun season.  I hope you have also had a nice holiday time with your family and friends.

I finished this Stoney Creek Freebie in 2002 or so. I had started it in 1989, I believe.  It has sat in a drawer since 2002, which is awful.  This year I simply placed it in a hoop and had fun displaying it.

This pattern was sponsored by DMC, and the advertisement for it was on the back of a magazine.  This was of course way back before the internet was in homes, so I had to send away for the freebie pattern. 

Do you have any old completed pieces just sitting in a drawer and not displayed?  I confess I have a few others that are also sitting in drawers.  Maybe this year I will do something about that.  On the other hand, I won't stew over it if they remain in drawers.

I feel happy with things I have been able to do in my life, but I am not a huge goal setter, per se.  Therefore I don't have any stitchy or other goals to share as the new year starts.  Some would say that makes me a slacker, and I am okay with that.

I do strive to do more walking and exercise this year.  It isn't quite a goal, but it is something I need to do.

Happy Stitching today! Thanks for stopping by, and please tell me if you have things in your drawers that need to be finished.

November 12, 2017

Mystery Sampler Update

At this point all three Lizzie Kate Mystery Sampler parts have been released.  I have seen the finished piece, and I look forward to getting there eventually.

I am still working on Part One.  Life is so, so busy.

When I can't stitch, I enjoy watching Flosstube videos and looking at great stitching photos on Instagram.  Recently I have discovered Fibertalk and that podcast is enjoyable as well. These activities help me get my stitching fix, but just a bit.

Here is a bit of progress:

In other news, I was extremely touched to receive a gift from a former student.  He is now just seven years old, and I taught him last year when he was just in first grade.  While he was visiting Mexico last summer he and his mom bought a lovely breadcloth for me.  This sweet little boy knew I liked stitching, and birds. I will treasure this gift always. I love the bright colors and motif.  I can only imagine how hard some young or lady worked to stitch this piece.

Thanks for stopping by today. 

October 15, 2017

A Bit of Stitching

So life has been well, let's just say-  oh so busy.  That's just the way it is. Work gets in the way of stitching and relaxation. And so it goes...

Here is a small snippet of progress on my latest Lizzie Kate.  I love how it is coming along!

Thanks for stopping by today.

September 24, 2017

Houses of Hawk Run Hollow Update

I did manage to stitch a bit during August.  Here is the latest photo I have of
Houses of Hawk Run Hollow.

I sure love the rich colors in this design!

I also have been working the Lizzie Kate Christmas Mystery Sampler.  I am enjoying that one a lot, too.

Thanks for stopping by today!

Breadcloth from long ago & Peanut Butter Butterscotch Oatmeal Cookies

Recently I had a delicious meal at my brother and sister in law's home, and I was so excited to see them use a breadcloth I stitched for them years and years ago.  I had to share it here, of course. 

I recently baked up some delicious cookies.  Here is that recipe:

Chewy Oatmeal Peanut Butter Butterscotch Cookies

3 eggs
1 1/2 cups packed brown sugar
1 cup white sugar
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 Tbsp. honey
2 tsps. baking soda
1/2 cup butter, softened
1 1/2 cups peanut butter
4 1/2 cups rolled oats
11.4 ozs. bag butterscotch morsels

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Beat together butter, peanut butter until well combined. Add brown sugar , sugar, and beat until smooth. Add honey, baking soda and mix in well.  Stir in oats and butterscotch chips.  (see below for variation) Use a cookie dough scoop to put on an ungreased cookie sheet. Bake 12 minutes, do not overbake. Cookies are flat and chewy.  Cool on the pan for a few minutes, then remove and enjoy! 

I split the batter into two parts and added 1 cup butterscotch morsels to one part, and the other part was doused with 1 cup of chocolate chips instead of butterscotch. (semi-sweet chocolate morsels)  My family preferred the chocolate chip ones over the butterscotch ones.  To each his own, I say! 

Pasta Salad

This post is simply a recipe post.  If you are looking for a stitching post, please skip this post.

First I recently made a pasta salad for a large group.  It turned out quite well, so I am sharing it here.

Pasta Salad

1/2 cup fresh basil
1 1/4 lbs. small cherry tomatoes
3 garlic cloves
kosher salt
1/2 cup parmesan cheese
3/4 lb. seashell pasta
1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil

Mix and chill.

Stitching Here and There- And a Finish!

I haven't shared anything in a long time.

My job keeps me very, very busy.  I love what I do, but it is a demanding profession.

During the summer when I had a break from teaching I did manage to complete two tea towels, and an ornament. I shared two of those items in a previous post, but wanted to share the third item today.

It's a tea towel I bought already stamped while shopping in Solvang, CA a year ago.  I love how it turned out. I used DMC color variations for much of the pattern.

In other news, I am working on the Lizzie Kate Christmas Mystery Sampler.  It's slowly coming along. 

Also I did work a bit on Houses of Hawk Run Hollow during August.  

I hope to get in some stitching time today. We will have to see.

Thanks for coming by today!

July 9, 2017

Houses of Hawk Run Hollow Update

I finally finished the third block in Houses of Hawk Run Hollow.  I started this block back in January, if you can believe it.

Each block takes me about sixty hours of stitching. That seems very slow to me, but then again I know I am a slow stitcher.  I started the piece in April of 2016.  From then until now,  I have also stitched one small ornament and one tea towel.  You can see that I am slow, and that I don't stitch near as often as I would like to do.

I am excited to move on now to the next square.

Here it is at this point:

A close up of the third block:

In a previous post I showed a picture of the leaflet of a Plum Street design (Maxim & Zoya)  I wish to stitch. I bought the pattern at our lovely LNS We, of the Needle.  The other day I had to return to the shop to buy stronger glasses, and while there I took a photo of this lovely piece.  This was stitched by sweet Yvonne. Yvonne works at the shop, and is very helpful.  If you are ever in southern California and wish to go to a fine needlework store, do go visit We, of the Needle. It is the friendliest needlework store I have ever visited.  Kerry, the owner, is friendly and so personable.  She does fabulous framing as well as stitching.

Thanks for stopping by today.

July 5, 2017

Stitching and Memories

First of all, I hope those of you in the USA had a great time celebrating yesterday.  We watched a great display of fireworks near our daughter's home.  What a great time we had!

I often think of the things I have stitched over the years, and I remember the time in my life when I was working on that certain piece.  Do any of you do this, too?

Due to the 4th of July holiday yesterday I thought of a patriotic piece I stitched for my son long ago. It was from the now long gone "Cross Quick" magazine.  I started this piece when my son was six and finished it when he was eight! So much for quick.   I remember dragging it along with me to many of our children's activities at that time. It was also a pattern my son chose for me to do, so that made it special as he was just a little guy then. He is now 31 years old, so that gives a time perspective, doesn't it?

Once I brought the little patriotic sampler with me to a local hairstyling place so that I could work on it while my son got his haircut.  My daughter was about 10 years old at the time, and she was probably sitting there reading a book happily by my side.  I sat working on the sampler, waiting for my son's turn.  After a while a young adult  male walked into the salon with a group of about five teens. It turned out they were from a group home of sorts.

One of the boys from the group home was entranced by my cross stitching work, and he exclaimed to me, "I can't believe you are making this for your son. How kind of you!"  It just really struck me that he was so taken with this small token of love for my son.  One could not help but wonder about the roads he had traveled in his very young life.

In time, my son outgrew having this piece on his wall. That sort of thing has never bothered me.   He allowed me to take it to my work where I hung it on the classroom wall, near the flag.  Somehow in the course of moving either classrooms or homes during the last several years it has become packed away somewhere.  I can't seem to locate this cute sampler.  Just the same, its memory stays with me. I  know it is somewhere here in our house. It didn't just walk away, right?

Patriotic Sampler- Cross Quick Magazine

Thanks for stopping by today. I do wonder, what sort of memories do you associate with your stitched pieces?

July 3, 2017

Purchases, Finishes, and Progress!

I am so happy to have some time off. In fact, I have already been off one month. Time is passing quickly.

The last several months have been busy and full of happy events, with some stitching thrown in from time to time.

Some time in spring I was fortunate to be able to attend a Lizzie Kate Trunk Show at our local LNS. My dear friend and I had lots of fun oohing and drooling over all the fabulous patterns and models.

I had to purchase something, right?

Here is what I selected:

While in the shop, I saw this one stitched up as a model and just had to purchase this Plum Street Sampler pattern. It is gorgeous in person! 

Back to Lizzie Kate, I started stitching up one of the ornaments right away.  Despite having collected scores of ornament patterns, I do believe this is the first one I have ever stitched!   

I usually stick to large projects that take me forever, but I finally decided to do some smaller projects so that I get a sense of completion. 

Here is Jingle, which was a nice, fun quick stitch: 

I am not sure how I will finish this one.  I have been watching Flosstube videos for quite some time now, and love one gal's (Yvonne- Dough Bowl - Night Owl Stitcher Yvonne) dough bowl idea of displaying various seasonal smalls in a beautiful antique dough bowl. This is something I might pursue down the line.  I found one dough bowl while on vacation recently, but it was too rustic for my taste.  The hunt continues...and I must stitch items for this bowl. The finishing is the tough part for me, and I may have to call upon my finishing friends for help in this project.  I move slowly, so who knows when an actual dough bowl will be ready for display.

In June I purchased some plain tea towels at a discount chain store.  They were just crying out to be stamped and embroidered.  I thus went ahead and stamped one to stitch.  Much to my dismay, I found that the weave was way too loose to be of much quality for stitching.  Just the same, I had already stamped the towel so I decided to go ahead and stitch on it.  The weave was SO LOOSE that I couldn't do french knots but instead had to improvise a funky sort of stitch for the center.

I have collected way too many iron-on patterns for years, and I decided upon Aunt Martha's Colonial Girls and Puppies.  My stitches are very poor, but I did finish it. The towel is of such poor quality that this one will simply be a decorative towel. The good thing was it was done in just a very short time.

Besides working on Jingle and the tea towel, I have been working on Houses of Hawk Run Hollow.  Progress IS being made, ever so slowly.  Here are a few photos:

           Photo from April 

June and July Photos: 

I am enjoying this piece, but it is slow going. There are twelve total blocks, and I am on just the third one after over a year of stitching.  Perhaps I will just stitch four squares? We will see. 

We recently returned from a road trip that took us to beautiful places around the USA.  In our travels were able to visit a fantastic needlework store.  Oh, to live close to that mecca!  I will share more information on that journey in an upcoming post.

Thanks for stopping by today.