Saturday, December 29, 2012

Last Post Of 2012

I think this Christmas season could be described as a whirlwind, speeding by so quickly.  Where did the month of December go?  I ask that question every year.  Our December was crammed full of fun activities, visits and visiting, and eating.  Very little baking was done - just a batch of cheese straws for a work party.  That's it.  And maybe that's a good thing. I figure that there's plenty of time for baking during the winter months ahead.  Unless the scale objects, that is.

I finally sat down and stitched this week, so "Holiest of Nights" is almost completed!
Just a little more border and it will be done.  Just in time for Christmas......of 2013.  But there you go.  I'll admit that I got stuck on this one for a while.  The many stitches of "Straw" which covered the ground in this chart made me yawn a little.  But after I got started on the little figures, I was more motivated. 

One stitching-related thing that I'm looking forward to participating in during 2013 is a Facebook group I've joined.  It's called Xstitch For Those Impacted by the Sandy Hook Elementary School Shooting.  Some kind ladies started this group with the intention of gathering stitchers from all over to create squares which will eventually be sewn into quilt hangings.  The quilts will then be given to parents, siblings and other relatives of those impacted by this tragedy.  The plan is also to create one (or more) quilt to hang in the school.  Many of the members signed up to participate in a quilt for a specific child or teacher, but others (like me) just want to create stitched squares to be placed where needed.  When I first signed up, there were about 125 members, and that number has grown to 455 when I last checked.  So if you're on Facebook and would like to participate, check out the link I've provided.  You'll find all of the specifics there, along with links to charts that would be suitable for this project.  You can use any chart or design you want, as long as it fits into the size limits.

I've seen other stitchers list their stitching resolutions for 2013.  As of right now, I don't have any specific stitching goals for the new year, but I could probably come up with a few eventually.  I'll have to think about that!  So, do you have any stitching resolutions?

I hope that you all have a very Happy New Year!  May 2013 bring good things to you!

Saturday, December 22, 2012

Other People's Creativity

All has been quiet in bloggerland for me lately.  I've been up to my usual pre-Christmas busyness and a little more disorganization than usual.  I also have not been stitching as much lately.  Oh, I've wanted to and I thought about stitching, but there always seemed to be something else more pressing that needed to be done in the past couple of weeks.  So I just wanted to get a post in before Christmas day and decided that I would showcase some creativity of others.

I've said before how much I like to get a hand-crafted gift, and I received one last week.  Sheila made this beautiful ornament for me!
It's stitched and finished so nicely, don't you think?  I'll add it to my collection of ornaments and each year will appreciate the work that I know went into it.

Many months ago I posted about a chart that I designed on PC Stitch for my friend Patty to stitch for her granddaughter.  Well, in the meantime the chart was stitched, framed and presented to the parents of this sweet little girl.  Therefore I can now post a photo of it.
Patty did a wonderful job of stitching it and her framer put it together so beautifully!  The baby's name is whited out, but you get the idea. 

One of the great things about the Christmas holidays is that our son, Matt, comes home for an extended stay.  He's been with us for a week so far, and his girlfriend, Stephanie, arrived a couple of days after he did.  Last Tuesday they cooked dinner for us, working together in the kitchen while I put my feet up and caught up on episodes of Project Runway Allstars.  (Why I didn't use this for stitching time, I don't know.)  Anyway, we were served some delicious spicy gumbo and a pear pie for dessert.  No store-bought piecrust for these two. 
Simply Delicious   

My last photo is something I never expected to see in December.  Mark and I planted two little rosebushes last summer and one of them decided that December is a fine month to display one perfect little flower.  This just made me happy.

And with that, I'd like to wish all of my followers, fellow bloggers and all readers of my blog a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.  I plan on starting the new year with a new project that I've gotten involved in and will tell you all about it soon.  Hmmmm, it's still early.  Maybe I can get a little stitching in tonight.......

Saturday, December 8, 2012

Christmas Treasures

It really looks like Christmas around here.  The house is almost decorated.  I keep finding things to put out, and I pretty much have to edit because over the years I've collect a lot of decorations.  Can't put them all up or it will look overly-festive.  Yes, there is such a thing as overly-festive.  While decorating the tree, I realized that we have quite a few ornaments that are very special to me.  Ornaments collected on various trips, ones from Christmas trees of my childhood, gifts from dear friends, very old ones (circa WW II, and two dating back to the 20's).  But the ones I love most are the handmade ones that I've collected over the years.
What an assortment!  You can see wooden ones that Mark made on the lathe, a cute snowman that Matt made in elementary school, and a funny macrame reindeer.  Then there are the clay ornaments that Matt and I made in a workshop when he was all of three years old.  When Mark and I were newlyweds, Sheila presented us with some beautiful handmade ornaments for our first Christmas tree.  Years later, she made us some pretty ornaments crafted from sand - yes, sand.  There are some little Christmas animals that I painted during my college years, along with some beaded bells and sputniks.  
These macrame snowflakes were fun to make, as was the Just Nan Santa and turkey that I stitched a few years back.

All of these wonderful treasures make the Christmas season special because they bring up so many memories.  I can't remember when the water bill is due, but I remember where I got each one of these little ornaments.  And, by the way, the tree looks so festive!  A photo of it will surely be coming up in the next couple of weeks.  So stay tuned.  Happy decorating!

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

All I Want For Christmas.....Stitchingwise

During this time of year, when we're all doing our best to find the perfect present for someone, Blog Hop #13 turns the tables and asks ME what I want.

The holidays are right around the corner and gift exchanges are happening everywhere you look. If an amazingly magical Stitchmas Santa were to fly overhead and bring you one stitching wish, what would it be? 

In general, I have pretty much everything I need -- good health, a home I love, a good husband, a smart and talented son, family, friends.  And I know that I'll be with family and friends during the Christmas season.  Yes, that's important to me.  But this question asks what Stitchmas Santa should bring me!  Ahhhh, that's an easy one.

As you may have seen from previous posts, I have enough stitching supplies to last a lifetime.  However there is one stitching wish that I have -- a location for our stitch group to meet.  You see, we had the ideal one which we loved, but circumstances made that one not possible anymore.  This new location has to be appropriate for the number of stitchers in our group, centrally located, inexpensive and accessible.  Stitchmas Santa, are you listening?   I do believe that he'll come through for us.  And that's it.  That's all I need.  In the meantime, the Sisters In Stitches will not give up looking for a place, and we'll gladly open our homes until we find one.

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.

Stitching the Night Away Stitching Bloggers Blog Hop

Sunday, December 2, 2012

A Little Joy

Last week I took a stitching finish from last year and turned it into a festive door hanger just in time for Christmas decorating.  The pattern is "Joy" from Little House Needleworks.  It turned out a little too big for a tree ornament so I figured that other parts of the house could use a little brightening up.

I stretched the stitched piece over foam core board, and thought about what I could use for a backing.  I liked LHN's idea of making a pillowy hanger, but wanted to do something a little different.  The pretty moss green felt that I had was regular felt -- soft and pliable -- not suitable for the backing I wanted.  So I went online and found out how to make standard felt into stiff felt.  All it took was one part white glue and one part water, mixed up and a paint brush.  I painted both sides of the felt and let it dry on freezer paper.  If you do this, you may notice that it looks really splotchy while drying, but have no fear.  Mine was very splotchy and it dried perfectly clear.  Also, you might want to turn it over a few times while it's drying.  It takes about a day for it to get good and dried out.

For the hanger, I used one of the DMC colors in the design and some silver metallic DMC and crocheted a chain.  I attached a couple of silver beads to the felt, and tied on the hanger and TA DAA!!  A sweet little door hanger.  A fun way to finish a stitching project.

Now back to my tree trimming.  And more about that coming up!