You are currently browsing the archives for January 2012.

Goodbye, Joe Paterno

  • Posted on January 22, 2012 at 3:11 pm

This post may meet with some serious disapproval, but I feel the need to express my sorrow around the loss of former head coach of the Penn State Nittany Lions football team, Joe Paterno.

Growing up in a small town in central Pennsylvania, our athletic world revolved around professionals in Pittsburgh, local high school teams and Pennsylvania State University sports. Most notably, the Penn State Nittany Lions football team, led by Joe Paterno during my entire 2 decades in central PA. So much pride was generated amongst the fans by the amazing performances of the football program year after year. And that team relied on the leadership of Joe Paterno.

I still remember attending my first live game at Beaver Stadium (yeah, yeah, hold the snarkiness, please). The energy of a packed stadium was an incredible, visceral experience and I was swept up in all of the excitement of a great game and being part of my first “wave.” My heart swelled with pride as I watched what was considered to be our home university team (my hometown was home to a local campus) win game after game and fight valiantly in bowl games.

I am filled with sorrow knowing that such a seemingly great and honorable man was fired from his post because he failed to pursue to the fullest extent of what was surely his immense power the appropriate, severe punishment of Jerry Sandusky and the condemnation of his actions. I hurt for the many, many innocents whose lives were irreparably damaged by Sandusky. And I lament the role that JoePa played, or did not play, in this case.

However, what I remember of Joe Paterno, and what I choose to continue to remember of him, is the amazing legacy that defined most of his life. The ending to his story is terrible and tragic for so many and in so many ways, but I will remember him as the larger-than-life figure that he was so many years ago, not the fallible man that he turned out to be. If choosing to carry within my heart a positive image of this man and not a negative one (without downplaying the negative impact) is wrong, then I am happy to be wrong.


  • Posted on January 19, 2012 at 11:02 pm

I have officially killed another WIP for WIPocalypse – woohoo! It isn’t a big finish, but any finish is a big deal for me. 🙂

This design is Grow! from Just Nan’s Over the Top collection.

Here’s where it was when I started:

(This picture was actually taken after I had put some more stitches in. The brown and tweeded lighter green stitches didn’t exist when I picked it up.)

And here it is completed:

No, the fabric did not change colors, my stitching photography just leaves a lot to be desired and I didn’t have the time or patience to fiddle with the colors enough to make two pictures taken at different times of the day under different lighting conditions match up.

And so now I have pulled out another WIP and put in a few more stitches. But you’ll have to wait for my next WIPocalypse update or a happy dance post to see what it is. 😉

Onward and upward!

WIPocalypse Check-in – January 9, 2012

  • Posted on January 9, 2012 at 10:59 am

Yes, the WIPocalypse is officially upon us! Here is my January update with my current WIPocalypse WIP list, including status updates:

    My current WIP pile:

  1. Northern Pine Designs – Geometric II
  2. Mill Hill – Spring Weathervanes – Floral Vase
  3. Jenna Magee – Purin – mounted onto scroll bars and ready to go
  4. Just Nan – Over the Top – Grow! (Tin Topper) – current focus piece
  5. Lody Steward – Pagoda Pincushion
  6. Chatelaine Designs – Micro #1
  7. Lizzie*Kate – Dog Lessons For People
  8. Nora Corbett – The Sunflower Fairy – FINISHED!
  9. Older WIPs:

  10. The Victoria Sampler – Heirloom Memories Sampler
  11. Chatelaine Designs – Tiny Rose Mandala Garden – FINISHED!
  12. Leisure Arts – Pooh Sweet Dreams Afghan
  13. UFOs:

  14. Dimensions – Bonsai and Buddha
  15. Roz Watnemo – Flower Garden
  16. Mirabilia – Fairy Moon
  17. Mill Hill Treasured Spring Sampler Kit – Flower Basket Fantasy
  18. Jeanette Crews Designs – Computer Wizard – Started February 14, 2007
  19. Giraffe Pillow

As you can see, I have added links to current progress photos for the ones I have available. I’m taking pictures as I pull them out.

I have two finishes to report already! Nora Corbett’s The Sunflower Fairy and Chatelaine Designs’ A Tiny Rose Mandala Garden. To be fair, The Sunflower Fairy was nearly complete.

Here are the before and after pics:

The Sunflower Fairy, as of December 28, 2011:

Completed January 2, 2012:

She will be dropped off tomorrow night for framing.

A Tiny Rose Mandala Garden, as of January 3, 2012:

Completed January 7, 2012:

This one will also be dropped off tomorrow night for framing.

Now I have moved on to a very small piece – Just Nan’s Over the Top Grow! tin topper. I needed something that I could work in hand, as working on a stand for several hours every night for a week hurt my shoulders. I suspect my momentum will slow down a bit, as I really have some other hobbies and personal work that I have completely ignored since the beginning of the holidays! 😆

So, there you have it! I need to remember to take a picture of the current WIP today, before I get too far along, so that I can show my progress next month. I suspect I may have this one finished by then and have moved on to a bigger piece. Those I will have to rotate between so that I don’t get too bored and stop making progress on the WIPocalypse in general.

WIP Killa

  • Posted on January 7, 2012 at 3:50 pm

I’m starting the 2012 WIPocalypse off with a bang! Last night, I completed a UFO that’s been languishing, unseen in one of my several stitching bags for years. Say hello (and goodbye) to a freebie from Chatelaine Designs – Tiny Rose Mandala Garden:

I probably won’t have more finishes for a little while. I do actually have other things I’d like to focus on other than stitching. 😉 I need to switch to stitching in hand for a while anyway because stitching on a stand for several hours at a time over the past couple of days has been sending me to bed with a headache every night. Enough with that!

My Little Art Space

  • Posted on January 5, 2012 at 8:00 am

At the end of November, beginning of December, or somewhere around that time, I ordered another Ott-Lite lamp so that I could use it to illuminate my easel, allowing me to do some drawing and other artwork after the sun sets. Since that happens quite disturbingly early in the winter and was kind enough to run one of their 50% off of Ott-Lite products sales, I was happy to oblige by making a purchase. I ended up with a really beautiful lamp – the Lexington floor lamp in Mocha Pearl. It suits the other lighting in our little reading nook quite nicely and that is where I decided to set up a little artistic space for myself, since the craft/music/everything else room is too crowded for me to set up my easel in right now. Add in the gorgeous bamboo easel that I bought from Dick Blick a while back (probably when I was still taking classes at The Art Institute), a folding chair, a bunch of pencils (and erasers), a nice thick pad of high quality paper and the two amazing artist’s models that Terry bought for me for Christmas and voila:

A little doodling space pour moi. You’ll have to ignore all of the mess on the floor and in the background, but it is hopefully only a temporary space for now until I can find a more appropriate and permanent space after we finish the basement this winter. It works, though, and lets me keep all of my drawing supplies spread out all over the floor and reading chairs so that I can pick back up on the drawing that I’m hiding in the photo whenever the spirit moves me. 😉

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Black Friday (-ish) Fabric Splurge

  • Posted on January 4, 2012 at 8:00 am

Okay, I am ashamed to admit it, but I splurged on some stash after Thanksgiving. Silkweaver had a sale, I thought I needed some fabric and the rest is… well, infamy, really. Wait, I mean history. Yeah, that’s it. 😉 Anyway, it took a month to get to me, but I’ve really been wanting to get two of these colors, so I’m glad to have them in my hot little hands:

Top (L to R): Solo – 28 count linen; Solo – 28 count linen; Hocus Pocus (limited edition color) – 32 count lugana
Bottom (L to R): Scattered Leaves – 32 count linen; Witch’s Brew (limited edition color) – 32 count lugana; Iris Garden – 32 count linen

I could have sworn that one of the solos was supposed to be a blue, but it was so long ago that I don’t remember anymore and it’s pointless to try to argue. Everything but Scattered Leaves and Iris Garden was just for the heck of it anyway. I really have to start ignoring their sales (and I did successfully ignore their Christmas sale, due in large part to the fact that my previous order hadn’t arrived yet) unless I need a specific fabric for something.

At least I can slot this little slip-up into my 5 Finishes challenge and not feel so guilty about it.

I was going to try to slip in a couple of stitches last night on a UFO that I’ve pulled for the WIPocalypse, but I spent too much time running down what appears to be my only skein of DMC 501 for the UFO and then got stuck playing around with PCStitch, so I frittered away all of my spare time and forced myself to be a good girl and go to bed. Bummer. I’m hoping for stitching time tonight, but I’m also trying to balance out stitching with working towards goals that I want to accomplish this year. Speaking of which, I really need to write some of these things down…

First Stitching Finish of 2012

  • Posted on January 3, 2012 at 8:00 am

Say hello to Nora Corbett’s The Sunflower Fairy:

Design published in Cross-Stitch & Needlework Magazine’s September 2009 issue.
Stitched on 32 count overdyed linen named Days Gone By from Silkweaver.
Used the beads and fibers called for, with a few exceptions:

  1. Substituted Old Oak Tree by Crescent Colours for Valdani V4 Golden Brown
    (due to what I think was a mislabeling of my Valdani skein)
  2. Substituted Kreinik #4 braid 221 for the wings
  3. Substituted DMC 898 for the backstitching of the wings and antennae
  4. Substituted DMC 948 for the skin, which I recharted to stitch over one

WIPocalypse NOW!

  • Posted on January 2, 2012 at 11:26 pm

I’ve joined Measi’s 2012 WIPocalypse. So far, I have identified 8 WIPs/UFOs that I’m going to focus on for which I have photos. I also have the 8 projects in my current WIP pile, plus at least 1 more project I want to focus on. I suspect that the list will grow as the year goes on and/or as I finish projects on the list and/or as I start new projects. For now, though, this is what I have:

    My current WIP pile:

  1. Northern Pine Designs – Geometric II
  2. Mill Hill – Spring Weathervanes – Floral Vase
  3. Jenna Magee – Purin
  4. Just Nan – Over the Top – Grow! (Tin Topper)
  5. Lody Steward – Pagoda Pincushion
  6. Chatelaine Designs – Micro #1
  7. Lizzie*Kate – Dog Lessons For People
  8. Older WIPs:

  9. The Victoria Sampler – Heirloom Memories Sampler
  10. Chatelaine Designs – Tiny Rose Mandala Garden
  11. Leisure Arts – Pooh Sweet Dreams Afghan
  12. UFOs:

  13. Dimensions – Bonsai and Buddha
  14. Roz Watnemo – Flower Garden
  15. Mirabilia – Fairy Moon
  16. Mill Hill Treasured Spring Sampler Kit – Flower Basket Fantasy
  17. Jeanette Crews Designs – Computer Wizard – Started February 14, 2007
  18. Giraffe Pillow

Too much? 😉

My Stick Family from