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And Now For Some Finishes I Can Share!

  • Posted on October 31, 2005 at 10:12 pm

Yay! I have two ornaments that I finished stitching tonight. And I can actually share a finish for the first time in a while. 😀

The first one I finished tonight was my wildcard pick for October as part of the JCS Ornament SAL with the Chartswappers Yahoo group. It’s called Christmas Poinsettias and comes from Cindy Valentine Designs. Having model stitched for Cindy, I happen to be a little partial to her designs. 😉

Christmas Poinsettias Ornament

The second finish is called Love Heart from Charland Designs. This is one of the ornaments that I liked out of the 2004 JCS Ornament issue that didn’t make it into the SAL.

Love Heart Ornament

I also have two new starts this week. Last night, I stitched my first star onto the Pooh Sweet Dreams afghan I’m stitching for friends who are having their first child in February. Normally, I wouldn’t do something this big, but the mother-to-be is a fellow cross stitcher and I didn’t want to do a birth sampler in case she wanted to do one herself. This is my first afghan and will be good practice for the one I want to do for myself at some point.

Tonight, I was hoping to start the Christmas Hearts bellpull, but seeing how it’s after 9:00 PM and I haven’t eaten yet, I don’t think that’s going to happen. 🙂 I’ve also pulled out my Chatelaine Tiny Rose Mandala Garden and attached it to the needlework frame that DH made for me. That needs to start moving, too.

Ahhhh… the sweetness of new and returning projects!

Woohoo! It’s DONE!

  • Posted on October 29, 2005 at 1:22 am

Yes, that’s right folks. The model stitching project that I’ve had since August is finally completed! The final touches have been put into all of the pieces, the final scans have been done and sent to the designer and everything is ready to be packed up and shipped back. Now I just wait for the designs to be published so that I can see the fruits of my labor. 🙂

Gosh, I almost don’t know what to do with myself, stitching-wise, now that this is finally done. Oh no, wait, I have a SAL for the Christmas Hearts bellpull from Victoria Sampler starting on November 1st. And an ornament to finish for this month’s JCS SAL. I’ll be taking that with us tomorrow to South Jersey. Terry’s maternal relatives will be in town and visiting his dad to have an informal family memorial in honor of his mom. It’s amazing how much a few weeks can do to take the raw edge off of that pain. However, tomorrow may be full of Kleenex moments? Anyway, we’ll get to see an aunt and uncle that we haven’t seen since our wedding in 1999. I thought I was going to finally meet the notorious aunt whom I’ve never seen except in pictures, but it turns out that she’s not coming now. And I’m looking forward to seeing Uncle Dave and Aunt Carol, whom we had the pleasure of visiting in Phoenix last Thanksgiving. All of us sitting around for an entire day holds the promise of some good stitching time! 😉

Well, it’s past my bedtime and I have a headache from concentrating so hard for hours. I’m going to take some Tylenol and hit the hay. Hopefully, the Tylenol will help the multitude of problems present in my body right now (including the headache, a pulled muscle in my neck from Monday and a potential UTI) so that I can get some good sleep. 😯

A Tour of My Stitching Areas

  • Posted on October 27, 2005 at 11:04 am

This was all started by Vero’s blog entry about stitching places. And so, I’m rising to the challenge set by other stitchers to show my stitching messes! I even had Terry take lots of pictures for you. 😉 Please note that you can click on any of the pictures to get a bigger view. I just didn’t want to overload the front page of my blog with full sized pictures.

First off, you’re only seeing the left side of our “craft room” here. The middle of the room is taken up by a folding card table containing Terry’s boat stuff and right side of the room is taken up by musical instruments and accessories, including my flute, Terry’s violin, a music stand, an electric piano and a computer for MIDI interfacing with the electric piano. Then, you’ll see slightly closer shots of the left side of the room, from the doorway to my desk under the windows in the middle of the room. Keep in mind that the whole room is only 9′ x 12′, so it’s not very big.

The box with the blue lid contains all of my commercial charts. The binders contain the freebies. The clear box contains all of my kits. The two black containers and all of the bags next to the desk all contain my scrapbooking supplies. Yes, I have another addiction…

Here’s a close up of the desk. Pictured on top of the desk are two pieces that I am going to enter into the Silkweaver contest this year. The piece at the top center is going into the jewelry box next to it for a Christmas gift. Also on top are a small scrapbook and miscellaneous little notecards I’ve received, along with two books containing decorative papers for tea bag folding and a magazine on card making.

And the box containing all (or the vast majority) of my kits:

And then the file box containing my charts:

And finally, in that room, we have the closet, which is completely overrun with my craft supplies. On the left, you will see a hanger containing my dozens of Mill Hill Christmas ornament kits. There’s also another hanger holding my larger fabric cuts that won’t fit into my fabric drawers (hmmm… forgot to take a pic of those, let me know if you want to see them). On a hanger against the back are rings containing a lot of my specialty threads, including WDW, GAST and Waterlilies. I also have unlabeled Waterlilies in plastic bags on rings in a container buried on the left side of the closet. On the right and left sides, at the bottom, you can barely see the 3-drawer plastic units that I have which hold various things, from fabric in tubes to fat quarters to finishing to plaster houses and wood boxes for decorative painting. The silver plastic unit on the right side is a 6-drawer unit containing all of my rubber stamps and supplies. On top of that are my 6 Stitchbow containers, 3 traditional floss boxes and 1 mini floss box that holds my Kreinik spools. On the shelf are various crafting supplies ranging from empty scrapbooks to canning materials to wax for candle making. On the floor are my sewing machine, a mini ironing board, a mini travel iron and my sewing supplies. Yes, that closet is definitely all mine! 😉

Oh yes, and as an added bonus, I have a picture of the Sudberry House items that I bought for a steal at the yard sale in August at their factory outlet in Connecticut:

The final stitching spot for me is my “stitching corner” in the family room. This is the area that I’ve overrun with all of my current WIPS. Sorry I had to block out what was on the Q-snaps, but it was part of the model stitching project I’ve been working on, so no peeking allowed! The notebook on the arm of the sofa was to track my model stitching time. On the little tray table are my blue lined ort basket (which had just been cleaned) and my basket of assorted necessities, including two types of braces for my wrists, extra needles, extra scissors, Thead Heaven and pins and sewing thread for hand-finishing. On the floor, on the frames attached to the lap stands are my Heirloom Memories Sampler and my restarted Bonsai and Buddha.


  • Posted on October 26, 2005 at 10:50 pm

I just finished the last of the hardanger on my model stitching project. Now I just have some minor stuff to go and then I’ll be all done. Wooohooooooooo! 😀

Stitching Blogger’s Question of the Week – October 26, 2005

  • Posted on October 26, 2005 at 8:28 pm

Today’s “Stitching Blogger’s Question” was suggested by Outi and is:

Have you ever stitched something as a gift and later realized that receiver doesn’t respect your stitched gift a bit (for example it’s never on show, or you have other reason to suspect that it may even be nonexistent or at least placed in some dark storage room corner)? If so, what have you done? If you’ve been lucky enough to avoid such people what would you do if it’d happen to you?

Yes, I have. I have put quite a bit of work into things that have never even been acknowledged. I chalk it up to a lesson learned. I won’t stitch for those people again. In fact, I have a very small number of people, a few family members and close friends, for whom I will stitch a gift. It takes a specific type of person to be able to understand and appreciate all of the time and love that we pour into our stitching. And while I cannot understand someone who doesn’t value any work from someone’s heart, I cannot blame them. I just feel sad for them.

I Had Fun Last Night!

  • Posted on October 26, 2005 at 12:09 pm

Despite the pouring rain and the pulled muscle in my neck that is really hurting me, I had a good night last night. A friend of mine bought me an awesome new game for my birthday, called Age of Empires III. Obviously, judging by the number 3 behind it, it’s not a new concept, but they have thrown a lot of additional, new concepts into the game to make it even more challenging, giving me even more things to lose track of as I’m playing! I think you really need at least two brains going at the same time to play it effectively, but it’s still a lot of fun.

Anyway, I decided when I walked through the door last night that I was going to spend a couple of hours playing the game and a couple of hours model stitching. I played until nearly 8 PM, then made a late dinner (we’re used to this), ate, cleaned up (yes, I even cleaned the dishes first) and then sat in my stitching corner to stitch. BTW, I had Terry take pictures of my stash areas and my stitching area this weekend. I just need to pull them off of the memory card and put them into a blog entry. Maybe I’ll pull them off tonight and post tomorrow. We’ll see.

At any rate, I spent a good 2+ hours working on the models and was able to complete stitching on all but one lone, last piece. It will take me about 45 minutes to do the remaining piece because it’s hardanger with filling stitches and I’m getting to be quite anal about my hardanger stitching, especially as I do more and more models containing hardanger. Once that is done, I just have some additional stuff and beading before I can send everything back to the designer for finishing. I really wish that I could share photos with you, as the stitching I whipped out last night was really well done, IMHO. 😉 Of course, I’ll post photos once the designs are released, but I have no idea when that will be.

So, the gaming/stitching balance worked really well for me last night, even if my wrists are starting to become overused. I will try it again tonight, but maybe start with the stitching instead to get that last 45 minutes worth done, then do some gaming as a celebration/reward and then start the wrap up work.

I can’t wait to go home and it’s only lunchtime! 😆

Birthday Weekend Recap

  • Posted on October 24, 2005 at 10:57 pm

First, I want to take a minute to thank everyone who has posted such lovely birthday greetings. I’m officially 30 years old now and I am perfectly content to be so. 🙂

I had a wonderful birthday weekend. While I didn’t necessarily enjoy my Friday off, it did give me time to continue cleaning up the house and to visit with my parents for a bit.

Saturday, though, was WONDERFUL! I cleaned up a little bit in the morning, but then Terry took over and let me relax by handling everything else left as far as cleaning went. I was able to play video games and generally relax. Then I took a long, leisurely shower that ran the hot water heater out of hot water. 🙂 Having company in the house and a timer on the hot water heater to save electricity happens to do that to a gal. 😆 I got out of the shower and ready for dinner at a nearby restaurant with my parents, Terry’s dad, Terry and me.

Terry’s dad arrived before I came down, all decked out in a nice blouse and matching silk skirt, with dark pantyhose and black heels. I pulled my hair up partially with a pretty new hair clip, put on a good bit of makeup (which is unheard of for me) and was ready to go. It was chilly out and I had on short sleeves, so I got to use the off-white cashmere cardigan that I picked up last year for just $20 on clearance. 😉

I had been having this vague feeling that maybe there was something up with the dinner that I didn’t know about. When we arrived at the restaurant and were shown into a private room, there were three of our best friends. We’ve known two of the three since college and we all work in IT (Information Technology) at the same company, so it was a very comfortable setting. I have no idea if I looked surprised or not, but the feeling that had before been vague was so strong before we walked into that room that I was nearly in tears by the time we got there. We had a wonderful dinner and then afterwards, we all went back to the house for a little bit (except for Terry’s dad, who left after dinner). Two of the friends had actually never seen our house since we built it nearly 4 years ago. Hence my frenzied cleaning of the house. 😉

I was able to grab some sleep overnight and then was up in the morning to see my parents off at 9:30 AM. An attempt at an hour and a half long nap met with mostly failure before I had to get up again and get ready for the arrival of my birth father and stepmom. Once they arrived, we sat and talked for a while and then went out to Applebee’s for lunch. A pleasant lunch was had by all, after which we returned to the house and spent some more time talking. All in all, it was a nice, unhurried visit and it was very important to my growth as a person. I won’t explain right now, as it is a very long story of what has happened with that relationship over the years…

By the time Sunday night arrived, I was starting to feel a little down, probably from the end of all of that excitement. I didn’t have anything scheduled for work today, so I decided to take the day off to recuperate, which turned out to be a good idea. As far as gifts go, no real stash enhancements, sorry! Terry did build me a nice prototype stand to hold my scroll frames, though. He’s quite creative and had fun engineering his own design according to my needs. Other than that, though, we apparently had a communications breakdown, so I’ll be taking some of my own money and having some S.E.X. later this week. I just need to take a close look at what I want to schedule for stitching early next year, and determine what materials I may still need to work on those projects.

I’m sure I’ve made this post quite long enough for now.

a love note

  • Posted on October 23, 2005 at 12:01 am

This post is from Jenna’s mom. I hijacked her blog. 😉

On midafternoon of October 23, 1975, an extraordinary event occurred: A comet was seen dancing across the skies and a beautiful new soul took form. Her name was Jennifer Lynn, and she was a dark-haired beauty.

Fast forward to Jenna (as she now called herself–and insisted that everyone else call her) to the night of her one-time-only dance recital. Though her little group of girls consisted of maybe a dozen kids, Jenna might as well have been the only one on the stage. She played to the audience, right out in front — she was having a ball and the audience loved it.

Fast forward again and once again she is performing again—this time in “acapella”, a little singing group some of the local teens had created for themselves. The audience was larger than we had expected and nearly filled the church. They went from one piece to another and then one jazzy number broke into a “skat song ” by Jenna, pleasantly surprising her mom and (step)dad. Fluid and high in pitch, her voice once again made one think of her heavenly and cosmic beginnings.

On the day she took her vows to wed our second son, Terry Magee, she was an ethereal Being. Rustling, silky sounds surrounded her when she moved. It was, of course, one of the most joyful days in her life. But the funny part is–it was one of the happiest of mine. My heart was so full, I smiled ’til my face hurt.

These little cameos are just some little memories that I carry within me, to be pulled out over and over like a favorite photo. Of all the thoughts I hold of you, Jenna, these are just the ones that come to mind now. I won’t tell the world the stories of how you spent your entire allowance on candy at “Leslie’s Corner’; of how you bought Swedish fish candy then ran around in circles laughing’ til you’d run into something, then drop to the floor, crying. (How were we to know that red food dye made you crazy?)

Remember our apartment where you and I lived together, alone, watching Days and Nights of Molly Dodd, and L.A. Law? We were bachelorettes for a year. Kinda neat, huh, despite the changes we were learning to live through. We became good friends then, partly due to our need for each other, but eventually becoming even closer as you grew up?

All her life she has been an extraordinary soul-expression. With everything she touched she met success. But more importantly, she became such a loving, sensitive, and giving person. When you are around her even for a short time, you become aware of her intrinsic sweetness.

To say that I am proud of you, Jenna, does so little to cover my feelings as you near your 30th birthday. I wish you could see you as I see you. Lovely, generous, multitalented—there is nothing about you I would change even if I had the power.

Thank you, sweetheart, for coming into my life and gracing it so.



Stitching Update

  • Posted on October 21, 2005 at 9:49 pm

I know I haven’t posted much stitchy stuff lately, but y’all have to know by now that this model stitching project has taken over my stitching life. However, I am nearing the finish line with it and can see the light at the end of the tunnel. Hallelujah! 😀

In the meantime, I did a quick finish of a little ditty that I stitched last year and sent it off to a surprise recipient this morning. I neglected to take any pics before sealing it up, but I wouldn’t be able to post them, even if I had, so there’s plenty of time and maybe the recipient will be so kind as to take some and send them to me.

I also finished my ornament for the Christmas Ornament Exchange on the SBEBB. Woot! I haven’t taken a pic yet, but again it’s something I can’t show you yet anyway, so there. 😛

Finally, in anticipation of completing my model stitching project by the end of the month and being able to start something NEW, I have unpacked my Christmas Hearts kit from Victoria Sampler, sorted the threads and ironed the fabric, all in anticipation of starting it as part of a SAL on November 1st. And seeing how I can’t work on the models while I have company and I cannot possibly refrain from stitching any longer, having not stitched in days, I think I’m going to start working on the ornament in the kit to give me something to do. Of course, I’ll have to wait until I either have better light or I get my stitching corner back from my mom! 😉

I am SOOOOOO looking forward to getting to do some stitching for me for a change!

My Thursday is a Friday!

  • Posted on October 20, 2005 at 4:12 pm

Woohoo! I’m leaving work in about two hours and won’t be back in until lunchtime on Monday (if at all; might work from home that day). I’m so excited, which is a good thing because the endorphins from my excitement are helping to override a headache I’ve had since this morning. 🙂

I feel like a kid on Christmas Eve, waiting for my birthday on Sunday. That seems silly and it feels odds since I have felt pretty blah about my past couple of birthdays. I think the fact that I’m actively going to be celebrating with friends and family is part of what has me wound up. The other part is that my parents are coming in tonight and will be here until Monday morning. I don’t normally get excited about parental visits (even though I’m very close with them), so again, I’m not sure what’s going on, but I’ll take it! 😉

So, I will probably line up a couple of automatic posts over the next few days just to keep my readers entertained, unless I feel like logging on and blogging. I still have a lot of housework to do so that everything looks nice and clean and as organized as possible for company on Sunday. I officially gave up last night on painting any more trim. It doesn’t look like Terry’s going to have the time to put it all up in the rooms before Sunday anyway and I was really draining myself of energy by coming home every night and painting for hours. I hadn’t gotten enough sleep on Tuesday night, so by the time I got home from work last night, I just wanted to lay down and take a nap, so I did! I reminded myself that this weekend is about ME, not about my house! LOL

I’m also bouncing around in my chair because I’ve had a totally successful day at work in a very short time span. I know most of you won’t understand, but it is SO satisfying when you write a bunch of code and it works on the first try! It’s a geek thing, I know, but it makes me feel REALLY good to get things working quickly and painlessly. I had two such events today, back to back. Things that I thought would take forever to figure out took no time at all and within about 2 hours, I finished everything I had on my list to do today. WOOOHOOOOOO! Makes me feel better about taking some time off. 😀

So, now it’s time to go home, clean up, eat and wait for my parents to arrive.

My Stick Family from