You are currently browsing the archives for November 2006.

SBQ: To Knot or Not?

  • Posted on November 30, 2006 at 5:51 pm

This week’s SBQ is:

How do you secure your thread when you begin a new one? Specifically, do you or have you ever used a waste knot?

It depends on what I’m doing. In regular cross stitching, I use the loop start, stitch over my tails or weave them under existing threads. I do not like knots in cross stitching (including french knots :lol:). However, I do use waste knots in my hardanger work. I place the knot so that it is in the path of where I will be stitching so that when I reach the knot, I can simply clip it off and everything has been already secured and the tension of the stitching or weaving is maintained. It’s very effective in this context.

It’s Monday Again?

  • Posted on November 27, 2006 at 4:53 pm

Darn, I so wanted to sleep in this morning, especially when I realized that I had mild abdominal cramps when I woke up. Spoot!

Now I’ve spent half of my day coding in one programming language and I need to shift gears to code in one or two others now. I’m in the mid-day slump, so I’m completely lacking in focus and could really use a nap. I know that I’ll be feeling better once my lunch partially digests and the sleepiness goes away, but right now I want to curl up in a ball under my desk and snore.

Not much to write about. This weekend was rather uneventful. I had all of these high hopes and wonderful intentions last week, but by the time the holiday came around, I think I just needed some downtime. Though I did start cleaning out both our and the spare bedroom. We generated what I’m sure is too much trash to fit in the can, so I’m not sure what we’ll do when we bag it up and try to take the trash to the end of the driveway tonight. 😉

I did spend some time stitching on Cathy’s round robin piece. I’m probably 80% or more finished at this point. There’s no backstitching and I have 4 colors left to work with. Two of which are halfway or more finished. I knew I shouldn’t have left the leaves until the end. Working with all of those greens gets a little dull after a while. I should be able to get it finished this week, which is nice because I’ll be seeing Cathy this Sunday. Not that she’s necessarily going to get her round robin at that point, though… because I have a surprise for her. I hope that she ends up not reading this entry for some reason. And if you are reading it, Cathy, if you want it to continue to be a surprise, then don’t read the rest of this post.











Okay, is she gone? The coast is clear? Cathy’s round robin ran into a little bit of trouble when one member of our RR group got married and was very overwhelmed during the time that she had Cathy’s RR fabric. As a result, the woman was unable to finish her design, but she did include photocopies of the chart (let’s not talk about the legality of that at this time). As a result, I want to try to not only finish my part, but this other woman’s, as well, so that Cathy has a completed round robin when I send it back. Otherwise, she would be the only one in the group not to have a completed project and what kind of Christmas present would that be? So, here’s hoping that I can manage it! The piece the woman chose looks beautiful, but has a TON of partial stitching in it, so no wonder she abandoned it. I think that I might have been tempted to, as well. Wish me luck, please! 🙂

Something Old and Something New

  • Posted on November 25, 2006 at 8:40 pm

Something old that I found hidden in a box of my childhood toys and memorabilia (including a ton of pens and pencils, which Anne will find amusing) is one of my early cross stitch works. I would say one of my first pieces, but considering the use of a specialty stitch and beads, it wouldn’t have been that early, but it was still done sometime in the 80s. It was framed in one of those plastic jar toppers that were so popular back at that time (ick!), so it has been quite exposed to the elements and is very dirty. This photo is pretty much straight out of the frame, as I wanted to capture the piece before I tried to clean it, in case I accidentally ruin it in the process.

While we were out buying furniture yesterday at Thomasville, I could not resist stopping in at the Michael’s next door. 😉 Actually, I had to use the restroom, but I also wanted to look for some jewelry kits that I could make up for my youngest sister, Ginny, for Christmas. I found two kits with matching, pearl-like beads. One for a set of two barrettes and two hair combs and the other was for earrings, bracelet and necklace. I could not resist making them up while we were watching TV and afterwards last night. They made up quickly, once I figured things out. The barrettes and hair combs were a challenge because you string on all of the beads and then have to wrap the monofilament tightly around the hair piece, arranging the beads as you go. It took me several tries to get it right on each piece because I’m very precise, but I think they turned out beautifully. Enough so that I’m dying to go out and buy more kits for me. 🙂 I didn’t like the closures that they used, so I picked up some magnetic closures to use instead and they worked out great! Enough babbling, here’s the something(s) new:

Thanksgiving Happiness

  • Posted on November 24, 2006 at 8:38 pm

Happy Thanksgiving, my US friends! I know it’s a day late, but we’re celebrating a day late. I spent 3 hours on my new cell phone Tuesday night catching up with a friend from high school. Anyone who knows me knows that I can’t just sit still, especially when I’m on the phone, so I had my phone propped between my shoulder and my ear the whole time, doing various things like beading a bracelet, sorting beads, etc. So, it should come as no big surprise to find out that I strained a muscle in my neck and triggered a migraine that I had to stay home with on Wednesday. On Thursday, I still wasn’t feeling myself (in fact, my neck is still sore), so we decided to wait until today to make our Thanksgiving dinner.

I woke up a little after 8 AM this morning, which was a real shock, but felt good. I spent the time stitching on Cathy’s round robin and then I made some banana bread. While the bread was cooling, I decided to take advantage of the hot oven and bake a batch of chocolate chip cookies for Terry.

We then ventured out into the traffic this evening to go to Thomasville and order our furniture. The lady was surprised at how calm we were in dealing with such a large sum of money. She said that usually people get a rush of blood to the head and she has to take their hands and reassure them that it is a true investment, as the furniture will last a lifetime. Well, we’ve had over a week to come to grips with the numbers. I was just pleasantly surprised that a change from accent tables to true night stands did not send us over the next 1K marker. We have it all worked out where the money will come from to pay everything off before interest kicks in 12 months from now, so the keeper of the finances (that would be me) is satisfied that all of the ducks are in a row. We’ve been saving up for a while to get this furniture, so it’s not totally out of our reach.

Now I’m just waiting for my stuffing balls to finish cooking and we’ll be ready for our little feast. It’s just the two of us, so I made a small boneless turkey roast for me, Terry made pork tenderloin for him, mashed potatoes with sharp cheddar cheese and I made my mom’s stuffing recipe (yum!). I’m going to take the easy route with the gravy and just pour some from a can instead of using the turkey drippings. I’m feeling lazy. Besides, it’s 8:30 at night and I’m hungry! 😆

This year, I am thankful for my stablizing mental and physical health, my husband and the life we have built and are continuing to build together. It’s a beautiful thing to be able to cook together in our little kitchen. 🙂

SAL’ing and Rethinking Exemptions

  • Posted on November 22, 2006 at 12:28 pm

Michelle, Carol, Nicole, Andrea and I have decided to SAL together in the coming year on Just Nan’s Barnabee’s Quest design (all 3 parts).

We will be starting on February 1st, 2007. This gives us some time for life to settle down after the holidays and allows us some extra time to get everything kitted up. Anyone else have this design and want to join in? We’re very excited! 😀

Also, regarding yesterday’s post, Coral was kind enough to not lull me into complacency on my exemptions. So, following her suggestion, I am going to add at least 1 more project to my list for every exemption that I take. In fact, if I’m really determined to be true to the purpose of the challenge (to reduce the amount of unstitched stash that we own), I should actually add 2 projects for every 1 exemption. If I go for this option, I would be able to count any exemptions that I actually manage to stitch (which would allow me to count the Whimzi designs that I buy for my cubicle at work).

I went upstairs and tallied the number of exemptions that I’ve made use of abused to date and the grand total was 9. I’ve taken far more liberty with the whole exemption concept than I had realized. So, that makes my challenge either a 59 project challenge or a 68 project challenge! EEEP! That is a very sobering thought and one which will make me think long and hard before I take any more exemptions. Exactly as it should be.

So, let me take a deep breath and announce that I am now doing a 68 Project Challenge! With only 13 projects completed to date, this means I have actually lost ground towards my goal and need to complete 5 more projects just to catch back up to 50 projects to do. I’ve managed to dig myself into a hole. *sigh* Mea culpa. I made my bed, now it’s time to lay in it. I had better get stitching!

Great, thanks Coral… Had to keep me honest, didn’t you? 😉 Seriously, though, thank you.

Exemption Taken

  • Posted on November 20, 2006 at 2:23 pm

I talked about seasonal WhimZi designs being an exception to my 50 Projects goal, but I never actually added them formally onto the list, so I hope that it’s still okay.

Under my limited edition exemption, I bought Teresa Wentzler’s You Were Hatched design from last year’s Fantasy Faire. Bobby at Stitching Bits and Bobs has been hoarding a few of these so that she could sell them this month as Teresa Wentzler’s featured retailer for November.

I also added the Just Nan’s Snow Faces WhimZi design, plus the frame and charm.

All told, less than $25, including S&H, due to her current Thanksgiving sale. Does this count as an exception or did I just slip on my 50 Projects?

SBQ – Christmas Ornaments?

  • Posted on November 20, 2006 at 8:08 am

Do you stitch Christmas ornaments? If so, how many do you stitch each year and for whom? If not, why not?

Hahahahahahahaaaaa! If you don’t know my answer to this one, then you must be relatively new to my blog. I definitely stitch Christmas ornaments. At least, I have been. This year, I have not stitched a single ornament, though. I didn’t join the JCS ornie SAL that I usually participate in, so I didn’t end up doing anything. I would like to get some done before Christmas to give out, but time is rapidly disappearing on me, so I’m not holding my breath.

When I do stitch ornaments, though, I tend to stitch some for me, some for family and some more for friends. I went nuts last year with ornaments and had a giveaway on my blog, so maybe I’m balancing things out by not stitching this year? 😉

Overdue Pictures

  • Posted on November 19, 2006 at 4:08 pm

Woohoo! I am still feeling good. We lazed around yesterday, but today we went out and installed 10 more sections of fence along the property line. We’ll have to go back and buy more before the ground freezes, probably some time early this week, so we can work on it over the Thanksgiving holiday. I would really love to get back to the beginning of the woods this year, but it is a total of over 200 feet and the fence sections are only 3 feet. We’ll see, but I am awfully motivated right now. I feel like I can do anything!

Now, even though it was overcast this afternoon, I hung up the angel and snowflake faux stained glass pieces that I completed last week and snapped some pictures for you.

The angel suncatcher will go to my Mom for Christmas, so I tried to make her hair and skin tones closer to mine. The snowflakes will hang in my cubicle in the openings where there will eventually be plastic window inserts but are right now just open. Either that, or they will hang on our backdoor with everything else. 🙂

I also had Terry use his digital SLR camera with some of this special lighting goodies to get a photo of the mirror that I stained for my Gram for Christmas. Once again, I’ve had this kit for years, but fortunately the stains did not dry out, they just evaporated a bit. I had enough to complete the design, though just barely with the golden yellow color. I would love to do one of these for me, if Dimensions still makes them. Super easy, with a great looking result!

Itsy Bitsy, Teeny Weeny…

  • Posted on November 19, 2006 at 12:47 am

… Christmas biscornu!

I finished this little bugger on Saturday night. Putting it together was a little bit of a challenge, mostly when I got near the end of sewing it shut. Whew! It only measures 1 inch or just larger than a U.S. quarter. Is this the tiniest biscornu you’ve ever seen? It’s the smallest I have and will ever finish, I’ll tell you that much! 😆

And now, just for Outi, a range of different biscornu sizes. The smallest is the one I just finished, the next is the one Outi stitched for me for my birthday, the third is what I used to consider “small” for biscornus (stitched by Rosa Bjarna) and the largest one is one that I stitched and would consider a fairly “regular” sized biscornu.

I Am So Thankful

  • Posted on November 18, 2006 at 7:36 pm

While trying to make breakfast, I was frying up some bacon and I went into the refrigerator to get out the milk and Bisquick so that I could make pancakes. I grabbed a nearly full half gallon plastic bottle of milk, it slipped from my hands, went straight down and a huge flume of milk came up and hit me in the face. In my hair, all over my face, down my shirt, running all over the floor. All I could do was squeal. 😆 Terry came over and helped me clean up the huge mess and was perfectly kind about it. I can tell you a number of people in my life over the years who would have reacted by screaming at me. But there he is, on his hands and knees mopping up the milk from the floor, with the two of us just laughing about it.

It was a confirmation for me that I’ve made the right choice in picking my partner in life. I could not have found a better man if I tried for the rest of my life.

So, today I am thankful for my husband. And that he’s mine. 😀

My Stick Family from