Monday, April 30, 2007

Our first ribbons!

The pugs and I had an agility trial over the weekend and we won our first ribbons!! :-) Clancy had two second place finishes in events called Tunnelers and Touch N Go and Molly had a third place finish in Touch N Go. I so proud of the both of them. The picture above is from Sunday evening. They were so tired from the weekends activities. Clancy is on the left and Molly on the right. I think they look so cute when they are asleep.

Not much stitching happened as a result of the agility trial. I did manage to finish all the stitching related to My Treasured Workstation. The finishing kits should be mailed to us this week and the official finishing weekend is May 19th and 20th. I'm so glad the stitching part is over.
I wasn't able to finish my ornament from the Ornament weekend but I'll work on it on the train this week so I'll be just a little behind. It's Topiary IV from Hillside Samplings. This one has a cute lady bug beed on it.

Not so good news for the Village of Hawk Run Hollow - I didn't put a stitch in at all so there is no way I'll finish block 6 before the end of the month. This will be the first month that I haven't been able to complete a block. I'll of course work on it until I leave for vacation on Saturday and I'm hoping I'll be able to get it done before then. I need to work on my goals for May - they will be very modest since I'm starting the month behind and I'll be away on vacation for a week. I also have an agility trial at the end of the month so no stitching then either. As for my vacation, I'm so busy with work and everything else, I'm having a hard time getting ready. I'll have to dedicate an entire evening choosing clothes, ironing and packing. I'm thinking Wednesday night. Then I can get my nails done on Thursday after work and still have time to work on St. Reatham. On Friday Molly and I have a one day agility trial so no packing that day. It's going to be a busy week.

Friday, April 27, 2007

A finis and a start :-)

Alyssum Scissor Pocket
The Cat's Whiskers Design Studio
32 count Little Boy Blue Belfast linen
Dinky Dyes Thread - Coolibah

I could not decide on which photo to lead with, my completed Alyssum Scissor Pocket or my St. Reatham start. :-) I'll go with the scissor pocket - there will be plenty of time to watch St. Reatham grow.

Here is my St. Reatham start. I completed a dog and a tail! I love the silk I picked out. I'm so excited to start this piece. It will be hard to only work on it once a week but maybe that is what keeps it fresh? Next week I won't have much time because I'll be getting ready for my vacation and the following Thursday I'll be on said vacation and currently I don't plan on bringing it along. Unless I have room in my luggage of course. ;-)

Yesterday was also a good mail day. My Lakeside Linen fabrics arrived from Needlecraft Corner. Now I'm almost ready to start the Girl Series from Carriage House Samplings (just need the silks). And Quaker Study is all ready to go. Now do I bring Quaker Sampler II from With My Needle or Quaker Study on vacation?

Also my My Picture This Plus fabric arrived for my Cirque des Cercles. I'm not sure what to make of it. The swatch of Phantom I saw at my LNS was so much darker, which is what I wanted and the swatch online was also very much darker than what I received. But how many more times should I try to find what I'm looking for? Or do I try to re-die this piece to the dark shade I want? Or do I just try and give it a go and see how it looks after I start? I thinking I should have waited until I found a piece in person - then I would get what I wanted for sure but I so seldom go to places where the linen is sold I could be waiting forever.

Here is my scissor pocket when it is open with the scissors. I still need to make a bob.

Here is the back.

Thanks for all the comments I have received recently! And a few new people stopped by - thanks for that also. :-) I haven't had much time to check out other peoples blogs lately but I plan to catch up while I'm on vacation.

Thursday, April 26, 2007

A monthly finis

I'm calling part 7 of Marquior ABC finis. There is still a tiny bit of the letter "I" to complete but since I did so much from part 8 I'm thinking it's a wash. And I need to move on to get totally caught up with my goals for the month. Yesterday when I was saying that I should meet all my goals I totally forgot about My Treasured Workstation. I still have the last section to complete. The finishing is scheduled for the third weekend in May but I really want to complete all the stitching on time which is by Monday. And it really is a small section. I should be able to do it this weekend or on Monday's train ride to work.

I'm all done with the stitching on Alyssium Scissor Pocket. Now onto the finishing. I'm working from home today and tomorrow and while I love to be at home and not have to go through my long commute I'll lose five hours of stitching time because I never get up early when I'm home just to stitch! So I probably won't have this finished into the pocket by the end of the weekend. Oh well! Things happen.

Today is the start of St. Reatham. The goal is to stitch three hours on every Thursday. We shall see how it goes.

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

making progress

I finished up the main part of the Alyssum Scissor Pocket yesterday on the way home from work - did I ever want to finish it up last night! :-) But I put it aside to work on Marquior ABC. The progress photo is a mix of part 7 and part 8 - I'm working on both right now to make it go quicker. I plan on working on it again tonight and Friday night. Thursday is my St. Reatham start and over the weekend I'll finish up block 6 of the Village and work on my ornament of the month. Time is really moving - it feels like I just did last month's ornament. I should be able to complete all my April goals - plus one! I love it when that happens. I need to start thinking about May and what project I want to take on my cruise to Alaska. I'm thinking Quaker Sampler II and my Barnyard Wool Whimsy series as a backup in case I get bored with QSII.

I'm almost finished with the cross stitching part of the scissor pocket. I wish I could get a better photo of it. It's not on tan/beige linen at all but a very pretty light blue. Hopefully once it is done, I'll get a good photo.

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

St. Reatham - all set to go

My linen for St. Reatham arrived last night and am I ever happy with my chosen combo of linen and silks. I think it will look great. I did go with 36 count linen and I'm glad that I did. I'll be able to use one strand of silk and I much prefer that look to using two strands of silk. I'm planning on starting on Thursday evening. I can't wait to put in that first stitch.

Here is my progress on Alyssum Scissor Pocket - over half way with the bigger section. This is coming together nicely. I did the right thing (for me anyway) and worked on Marquior last night - no progress photo though, I left my camera at work. Again. Not much stitching time tonight - agility with the pugs but what time I have will be dedicated to Marquior.

Monday, April 23, 2007

My Quaker House finis

My Quaker House
Blackbird Designs
32 count Sandcastle linen from Silkweavers
Weeks Dye Works fiber

I was a bad girl yesterday and didn't put a stitch in Marquior yesterday. :-( I could tell I just didn't want to work on it because after I finished up My Quaker House I still had hours and hours of stitching time left in the day. I told myself the only thing I would allow myself to work on was Marquior so I didn't stitch at all. I just I told myself where to go! LOL! As you can see from the photo above, I did finish My Quaker House. I can't decide yet if I want to finish it using fabric into a bell pull type hanging or self finish the linen into a bell pull. I'll decide which is best next month because that will be my May FAL project.

For my train rides this week I pulled out my Alyssum Scissor Pocket from the Cat's Whiskers. I love the silk they chose for this piece - Coolibah. Such a bright tealy blue color - it will look great with my scissors just like they planned. This should go quickly - I hope to have my scissors living in it by the weekend. :-) Of course I'll have to make a matching bob - who could resist after all.
I'm way behind on my goals for the month right now. Being away last week really messed me up. I really had hopes of stitching at night but I was so tired from the class each night that I just went back to my hotel room and chilled. While I was away, I received my St. Reatham Long Dog chart and my Mermaid Blue silk from Vikki Clayton. I think I picked out the perfect blue. My fabric should arrive this week and I think I've settled on Thursday evenings as St. Reatham night. I'll see so how it goes and if it's hard to get into a rhythm on that evening, I'll look at a different night. I can't wait to get started on it. Eight pages of chart though! Yikes! I guess it's just one stitch at a time though.

Sunday, April 22, 2007

home sweet home :-)

I'm so glad to be home! My conference ended on Thursday afternoon so I drove up to NYC for a taste of the big apple. I thought Chicago was loud and busy (I'm a country girl at heart). Yikes! What a city - I could never live there. My luggage never arrived in NJ and I had to pick it up at the airport on the way home on Friday evening. What a screw up that was - American is getting a letter for sure - my bag arrived on Tuesday and they never even tried to deliver it! I finally had to go shopping on Wednesday. Of course I hit a huge sale at Talbot's so I ended up quite happy.

I was way to busy during the week to do any stitching so I didn't get a chance to finish My Quaker House. But I don't have much to do and I'm sure I'll be finished after tomorrow's train rides to and from work. I need to get a move on with Marquior ABC and the Village - I'm getting way behind on both. I think in regards to Marquior I'm going to proceed with working on both part seven and eight at the same time to make sure I'm all lined up across the piece. I have a feeling I'm a bit off this time and I want to be able to get even before I start section 9 which is the start of the bottom half and next months section.

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

lost luggage

Due to the terrible weather on the east coast Sunday and Monday, I had many productive hours at O'Hare International Airport yesterday in which to work on My Quaker House. I'm closing in on the last quarter of the piece. :-) But since my luggage never made it to New Jersey, I can't take a photo of my progress because my camera was in said luggage. Please send your warmest good wishes for my bag to join me here in Princeton, NJ. :-) I have hopes it will join me soon.

Saturday, April 14, 2007

some progress

I didn't really do much on my day off work yesterday. And I really didn't much stitching either. But I did have a great nap! :-) Here is my progress on My Quaker House - half way with this piece. I had planned on finishing it over the weekend but I need to get caught up with Marquior so I'm working on that instead. Speaking of Marquior here is my progress on part 7 - I hope to finish it this weekend since part 8 will be available on Monday.

Have a great weekend!

Thursday, April 12, 2007


I had almost four inches of snow in the backyard when I got home from work last night - a new record for this time of year - and about an inch more is expected today. What crazy weather we are having. My poor daffodils!

I worked on Block Six of the Village last night. Almost half way finished with this block. I love it when the blocks start to look like something. The second half should go super quick - it's just a bunch of horses and the blacksmith's name. I'm going to make my name, Clancy O'Shay after one of my pugs. :-) I need to start back on Marquior ABC to get caught up - part 8 will be out on Monday and I've barely made a start on part 7. It's so much nicer to stay current than to feel behind.

And lastly here is my progress on My Quaker House - I recommend this piece if for no other reason it's fast. :-) But the colors are really pretty also and I think it will make a really cute bellpull type hanging.

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

and the winner is...

St. Reatham from Long Dog. I ordered the chart yesterday afternoon. I'm going to stitch it on Golden Promise from Silkweavers using a silk from Vikki Clayton called Mermaid Blue 2327. I'll need to buy two spools! Yikes. This piece has over 52,000 stitches! What am I thinking. :-) I think I'll go with the 36 count then I won't need to buy premium floss.

Here is my progress on My Quaker House. Not much of a change from yesterday since I fell asleep on the way home yesterday. I didn't realize how tired I was until I got on the train. :-) This piece is fast - I'm almost a third of the way done so I'm sure I'll be done before the end of the weekend. I have Friday off work. I was planning on going to the Rosemont Quilt Show which has hundreds of vendors but I think I'm going to skip it. I'm really not quilting all that much right now and I want to use the money I'd spend there for my cruise to Alaska in three weeks. And I just spent close to $100 getting St. Reatham ready to go. So I'll be good and pass this year. Of course I'm still taking off. Long weekend before I have to go out of town on business. :-)

I got an email this morning from Silkweavers letting me know that my Bluebird's Message from BBD that I stitched on Cameo won the drawing for the FOTM club. I get April free! That will help offset the cost of my huge hunk of Golden Promise that I ordered today. :-)

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

some letters

Here is my progress on My Quaker House - I didn't get much done - had a visit from a frog that occupied much of my time this morning. ;-) The colors sure are pretty, even the two I had to substitute are working out ok. I'm already thinking ahead to how I want to finish this one off and so far I'm thinking a narrow wall hanging would look nice.

Here is The Village - slow going last night - I was watching the last four episodes of season 3 of 24 so not much stitching was going on. Tonight is agility with the pugs so nothing tonight either.

Call me crazy but I have an urge that I'm finding impossible to resist. I want to start another BAP! I'm torn between two possibilities right now. And of course I don't have the charts, linen or silk fibers and both will be over $100 to kit. The first is St. Reatham by Long Dog Samplers. I'm thinking of a golden yellow linen a la Vintage Autumn Gold from Lakeside Linens with a dark blue silk thread. I'm thinking that if I set aside one evening like a couple of my fellow bloggers are doing with Paradigm Lost would work. Sure it will take a while but at least I'd make a start. Both ladies post once a week their progress photos and I can see they are moving along.

My second choice is Mermaid's Folly by Courtney Collection. I'd go with the same combo of golden yellow linen with dark blue thread.

Both of these are long long term projects with Mermaid's Folly being the larger/longest of the two finishing on 32 count linen 36 x 15 while St. Reatham on 32 count would finish at 24 x 19. Of course I could go with a 35/36 count but I'm uncertain at this point if that is how I want to go. But I need to think of the savings in money - it won't be much but a savings is a savings. Not to mention the difference in framing.

Right now I'm really leaning toward St. Reatham. It's just calling me....

Monday, April 09, 2007

Spring Feaver Biscornu Finis

I participated in the Focus on Finishing FAL (finish along) over the weekend by finishing Spring Feaver from CAt's Whiskers into a biscornu. What a fun project! I'll do many more like this. It's so tiny, it fits right into the palm of my hand. I got clever and desided to reverse the other side switching the color sequencing. The below photo is the reverse. I also found time to quilt for a couple of hours and work on block six of the Village. I'm using 32 count Sand Dune which is the recommended color.

And for my train project this week I started on a Blackbird Designs chart from the booklet, With Needle and Thread called My Quaker House. I had five of the recommended WDWs threads and I subtituted two. I stitching it on 32 count Sandcastle from Silkweaver Fabrics. I really should have taken something from my waiting in the wings list but just didn't feel like it. :-) I spent a couple of hours going through my stash on Sunday and this is what kept jumping into my hands.

Friday, April 06, 2007

Their Song Finis

Blackbird Designs
Their Song - Loose Feathers #24
32 count Lambswool Linen
Recommended Weeks Dye Works Floss

Here is my completed Their Song - love the colors and how quickly it stitched up. I think I will frame this one. Last night I started back on The Village of Hawk Run Hollow, I'm now on Block 6 which is the Blacksmith block. I'd like to have this completed before I go on my business trip the week after next.

As my train project, I put Spring Fever from Cat's Whiskers in my bag. It's pretty cool because the instructions illustrate how to sequence overdyed threads. I had an idea on how to do it but I love having it spelled out for me. The silk floss from Dinky Dyes is so pretty, once again my photo doesn't even begin to do the colors justice.

Yesterday Jacque asked how long I'm on the train everyday to get to work. I average about three hours a day. :-) So even if I didn't stitch at night and on weekends, I still have a lot of stitching time each week. :-) No plans for the weekend - Easter is not a big deal at my house and it's still going to be below average outside so I won't be working in the garden. Hopefully I'll work on my quilt for a couple of hours.

Thursday, April 05, 2007

just a couple of birds left

I only have three birds to go and I'll be finished with this piece. :-) So I'll be done before I get home from work. I did work on it last night while watching season 3 of 24. Season 3 is nowhere as good as 1 or 2 in my opinion. Maybe it will get better. I hope so! :-)

I plan on starting a Cat Whiskers design for my next train project. I'm leaning toward the little pillow from the Nashville Market. That should go super quick. At night I really need to get back with the Village since I'll be a week short of stitching evenings this month. But it's still early and I know at this point I have plenty of time.

Wednesday, April 04, 2007

chilly day

Today's progress photo is slightly better than yesterdays thank goodness. This piece is stitching up super fast. And since I have no agility tonight now that Clancy has moved to Tuesday's, maybe I'll work on it tonight while watching season 3 of 24. :-)

Today I made travel plans to Princeton NJ for the week of April 16th. I have to attend a conference for work for most of the week. It will really cut my stitching for the week down since I won't have any train rides. I'll have to make sure I have a book on tape for the flight so I can stitch on the planes. I think I'll take of of my Cat's Whiskers with me. And a back up project just in case I have more time than I think I will. I also need to start thinking about what I want to bring on my cruise the first week in May. It's only four weeks away and I'm sure I'll have to purchased a few things. I'd love to start on one of the girls series from CHS - but I'm still waiting for my linen to arrive.

The pugs did great in agility last night. Clancy keep up with the dogs that have been in training for over a year with no problems. Not bad after only five months of classes. :-)

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

a bad picture

It's really storming outside in Chicago today so I could not get a good photo at all - it's not really so yellow looking. :-) I'm still making good progress and I'm on target to complete this by the weekend.
Tonight is agility with both the pugs! Clancy graduated to Molly's class last week. We'll see how it goes with both of them there at the same time. They are both used to Mommy and Me time and chances are they will both be put out by having to share.

Monday, April 02, 2007

No ribbons but a great weekend!

Molly was a star on Sunday at the agility trial. We had our first finish! :-) We managed to cross the finish line for the time in 12 runs. It feels like we won first place. On Saturday she was ok and we met the goals I had set for us. Six obstacles and a good start on both runs. Check! The only sore spot and I mean sore was when I twisted my ankle over nothing at the first jump on Saturday - Molly just sat there looking at me and it was like she was saying, well this is new, Mom is on the ground! LOL! I was sore for the rest of the weekend. On Sunday on our first Jumps with Weaves course, Molly did 10 of the obstacles and we just missed the finish jump - Molly ran around it. But on our last run of the day, the standard course, Molly did the first seven obstacles only bailing on the teeter which I had a feeling that she would because it's a heavy teeter, meaning she has to go farther up the teeter to make it move on down on it's apex. She is not comfortable doing that yet so she jumped off. She also ran past the weave polls (we need to work on that a ton because she also ran past the weaves in both her jumper runs) and then I made a mistake and ran her past a jump rather than take it but in the end she did 11 or 12 obstacles including that last jump. :-) For pugs in agility it's all about baby steps and she sure took some huge steps this weekend. I'm so proud of her. It's worth noting that along with my Molly and my friend Peggy's Molly there were a total of seven pugs there! It was great to see so many pugs at one trial.

As for weekend stitching, like I predicted on Friday morning I didn't do much except finish off part six of Marquior Friday night while watching the end of season 2 of 24. I did start on part seven but I didn't take a progress picture of that yet.

Here is my progress on Their Song. Almost half way there. Just one biggish motif on the bottom left and I'll start the top half. Hopefully I'll be at that point by tomorrow. The rest will fly because the bulk of it is the wording, the five small birds and just a couple of berries with leaves. I'll be finished with this no problem by Friday.

I meet all my goals for March plus a couple of extras. I love months like that. I hope April goes the same.