Thursday, February 28, 2008

Not much progress

As you can see, there is not much progress from my last report on this piece (Two Blue Houses by LHN). I'm not quick sure I like the two blues I picked out. It's charted for DMC but I really love the look of overdyed so I converted it mostly with thread I had on hand. I'm sure it will end up ok once I get more stitched. And it's not like I would rip out colors on such a small piece. If it were a larger, more important piece I would of course.

I'm on my mini vacation and the plan is to get as much stitching in today as I can. I would really like to make a dent with TBH so I can move onto something from the Nashville releases.

Please wish Clancy and me good luck! We have a three day agility trial starting tomorrow. My goals are modest, one Q in Novice Standard and during one of our Open Jumpers run, a perfect set of weave poles. But I'm secretly hoping for his Novice Standard title. :-) We only need two Q and it's ours and we will have three tries to get it. But I think the reality will be just one or none. We have not been able to practice at all in the backyard for at least six weeks now because of the snow cover and Clancy is the sort of dog who needs that extra practice. At this point, I'm not even sure he will remember how to do the broad jump because we never to that in class and his has been under snow for weeks and weeks and that has given us a ton of trouble in the past.

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Sampler of Stitches STU finis

I finished up STU this morning. Super quick like the other six. I can't wait to the last two to be released. Hopefully they will be sent out together like the first six were. Then I'll be finished! I can't stand it when a project drags on this long. :-)

I received my first Nashville releases in the mail yesterday from Elegant Stitch. I need to start to gather silk for Shores of Hawk Run Hollow (that chart came) - I'm going with Hand Dyed Fibers instead of NPIs. I also received from LHN, My Needle's Work and Home of a Needleworker 2 and from BBD Mildred's Garden House and I Thee Wed. I'm still waiting for everything I ordered from Drema. :-( I sure hope it comes soon, I'm dieing to see it all.

I'm going to put my bitch hat on for a second. Does anyone else get pissed off by paying $30+ dollars for a photo copied chart? I love CHS designs but the quality of the charts just sucks. And they are not cheap. How is it that other designers manage to put out higher quality charts for the same amount of money and sometimes even less?

Monday, February 25, 2008

weather woes - again

The weather forecast tonight/tomorrow AM is for 5-8 inches of snow. When will winter ever be over? I need a week on a beach so bad right now I can taste it. :-)

Over the weekend I started on The Drawn Thread's Sampler of Stitches, STU. I'm actually hoping to be finished with this tonight and U is a fairly small band and I'm almost finished with T. I haven't been stitching much at all over the past several days. I worked at home on Thursday and Friday and barely made a dent on Two Blue Houses (below) and I didn't put a stitch in at all on Saturday on anything. Yesterday I went to the big Chicago Kennel Club dog show (not to participate but to watch) and I only had a little time in the evening. The good news is, this is a short week for me. I took off work Thursday, Friday and Monday! Yeah! The bad news is, I only have Thursday and Monday to stitch because on Friday, Saturday and Sunday, Clancy and I have an agility trial. I'm hoping for our Standard Novice Title this weekend. But I'll be happy with any Q he gives me. :-)

But in any case, it's ornament weekend and I'm already behind for the year as I didn't do anything in January. So I'll bring something small and easy to see with me to the trial and I'll try out my cool new mini stitching light. And since I'll be about 5 minutes from my LNS, I'll stop in on Friday and see what's new. Yeah, like I need anymore charts! LOL!

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Where My Heart Blooms finis

Where My Heart Blooms by Blackbird designs
32 count Silkweaver Purely Primitive
Recommended Weeks Dye Works and Gentle Arts threads

I finished up Where My Heart Blooms yesterday on the way home from work. Such a pretty piece. I can't wait to turn it into something. :-) I didn't get very far with Two Blue Houses last night or today. I got on the train and promptly fell asleep.

While I was taking my finis photo last night I looked over my shoulder and this is what I saw! So cute. From the left, Molly, Clancy and Aoife.

Aoife wanted a close up so she jumped off the chest.
Molly not to be out done, jumped down right on my cross stitch. :-0
Silly pugs....

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Just a bird

I have one little birdy to go and I'm finished with this piece. After finishing the house, it was a breeze. At this point, I'm pretty sure I want to turn this into a pillow. It matches my colors perfectly in both my living room and bedroom and I can have it out all the time except during the fall (when I put out my other BBD pillow collection).

So what's next? Well I'm dying to start on something from Nashville but nothing as come in the mail yet so I'll start on something small and hopefully finish it before I get to much fun new stuff. I'll start on Two Blue Houses from Little House Needleworks. I have all the three houses ready to go but I've had Two Blue Houses the longest. I know it's a series of four - I wonder what color will be number four? Green maybe? Yellow? I can't wait to find out. :-)

Monday, February 18, 2008

lazy weekend

I had a pretty lazy weekend. But I got a lot of stitching done. And I managed to stay away from my LNS who was having a Nashville release party. I have ordered way more than enough to get me though the next year. :-) Of course, since when has that ever had anything to do with buying stash? LOL!

Here is my progress on Where My Heart Blooms. As you can see, I'm in the home stretch now. I took a break from it on Saturday to work on this year's Papillion Creations Mystery. I managed to complete both part one and two which the exception of one color. I'm using Vikki Clayton silk thread for my version and I didn't have a good yellow color. I started with a gold but it was just lost in the background of natural linen. Actually the entire piece is pretty muted on my linen choice but I'm not going to do anything about it now. :-) I ordered a nice light yellow and I hope to have it by the end of the week. Then I can finish up over the weekend.

Friday, February 15, 2008

Peacock Chair Finis

Peacock Chair by Cat's Whiskers
Recommended linen and Dinky Dyes Silk

I finished up the finishing of the Peacock Chair this morning. Not totally happy wth it - I did add the trim on the front of the cushion (my chair has pipping :-)) - it helps to hide the cardboard where the drawer meets the front. I can't figure out how to hide the cardboard at the bottom. I received a really nice email from a lady who reads my blog, Denee said she had the same trouble and several other people she knows did also. We both agreed the good news is we won't make the same mistake on the new chair! :-)

I ordered more stuff yesterday from the Nashville releases. I caved and puchased Shores of Hawk Run Hollow. I already had a half yard cut of the recommended linen so all I'll need to get going to the NPI fiber. I'll buy it a month at a time like I did for the Village. I also purchased Celtic Birds II from Sunflower Seed (not a new release but a personal have to have) Home of a Needleworker II and My Needle's Work from Little House Needleworks and from BBD, I Thee Wed and Mildred's Garden House. I guess I'm planning on being busy this year!

No major plans for the weekend - have a great one! :-)

Thursday, February 14, 2008

almost half way

I'm almost half way finished with Where My Heart Blooms - this would make a great pillow and I don't have any spring/summer pillows. I'll have to think about it.

I didn't stitch much yesterday and I spent the bulk of my crafting time working on assembling my Peacock Chair from Cat's Whiskers. I'm totally disappointed in how I'm doing to this point. I must have cut my cardboard forms a little on the narrow side because you can see some of the cardboard where it joins the box. In the photos, there is no cardboard showing at all. A quick fix would be to put some of the trim that goes around the back of the card around the bottom cushion. It will look like my chair is piped. I'll see if I need to do that tonight. It takes forever to go from piece to piece because of the time it takes to dry the glue.

I did order some of the new Nashville releases yesterday from Drema. I can’t wait to see it all. I picked up Quaker Turtles (with those cool scissors), Baking & Roasting & Frying & Boiling (now I need a doll), Heart of America and one chart which I can't chat about since it's a gift. :-)

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

stitching update

First let me say thanks for everyone's comments and concern over yesterday deck disaster. I spent the day working with the guys who came to take away the part of the roof that was blocking the back door. The pugs were most appreciative that they could once again go outside into the back yard. :-) We plan on rebuilding it just like it was. We were very happy with it and can't see any improvements we want to build. Just make it stronger so it doesn't come down again. :-)

Here is my progress on Where My Heart Blooms. The house did take forever but I really haven't been stitching much over the past week or so.

I've been taking a look at the Nashville new releases and right now I'm in a lot of trouble! :-) I've already pre-ordered a couple of things - The Garden Chair from Cat's Whiskers and two from the Courtney Collections, Gem Show and AlphaBlu.

But there are at least a dozen more which I have to have. Rosewood Maner has a new tree piece out - Season of Trees. I loved the first one and love this one too! I guess this means its time to by the first one.

I love all the new Blackbird Design charts - at least four are have to haves for me.

There are two With My Needle I want - Quaker Turtles and Hornbook Examplar.

I love this new Quaker from Bygone Stitches called Quaker Virtures - how about the cool shape?

From Little House Needleworks Hearts of America.

I was pretty indifferent to the new Hawk Run Hollow (but it's growing on me) but I love this new piece. You stitch the apron and put it on a doll. I just need a pattern for the doll and I'm all set.

From La-D-Da is this piece, Quaker Alphabet. I'd even do it in a blue.

And a couple from Workbasket. I love pigs and roosters! I also liked Rabbit Roundel - I can already see it on a pillow.

And just to round things off, a couple more Quaker pieces from Primitive Traditions. These all stitch up into useful things - a glass case, a card case and a checkbook cover.
This by no means covered everything I liked. Just what made the list of top things I want to do. Yeah right, and just when will I get to them all?? LOL!

Monday, February 11, 2008

this was my morning!

I was getting ready for work this morning when I heard the most awful sound. It was the loudest crashing noise! It was the roof of the deck collapsing! The weight of the snow was just too much for it and down it came. It's a complete loss. We already have someone coming to clear away the debris so in a couple of hours we should be able to use the back door again. What is really scary is I was outside with the pugs just 15 minutes before.

I didn't get much stitching done over the weekend but I'll post a photo of my finished house later. :-) It's been a crazy morning. :-)

Thursday, February 07, 2008

you've got to be kidding

We received a foot plus inches of snow yesterday. This brings our week total to around 24 or so inches. I swear I'm going out with a yard stick just to check for sure. :-) That's Aoife above on the deck. I tried to keep up with the shoveling but you can see I got behind - it was really snowing hard when I took these photos.

Poor pugs! They have a small path around the side of the house. If they leave it, they are up to their heads in snow. When I get home tonight, I will shovel a couple more paths so they have a little variety.

Wednesday, February 06, 2008

just building the house

As predicted on Monday, I'm still working on the house. I'd love to finish it by tomorrow. Then I can start on all the pretty stuff! :-)

I'm working from home today because we are in the middle of another snow storm! I realize that it is only the start of February, but I'm so ready for spring. And so are the pugs.

Tuesday, February 05, 2008

a couple of answers

I don't have any photos today as I left my camera at home. Duh, I don't know how I did that. But I haven't been keeping up with answers to questions that people leave me in my comments. I'll try to fix that today.

First answer is to Terri, she asked why I was leaving the little bunny on St. Reatham to last. Back in April when I was trying to decide between SR and Mermaid's Folly, I noticed the little bunny on SR being chased by all those dogs. I just loved that little touch and that tipped the scales for me. So the bunny will be last.

Sandra from the UK noticed how much darker Aoife's head is compared to my other two pugs and she wondered if Aoife would lighten up at all. There is a huge range of light to dark within pugs. At this point at six months old, Aoife is the color she will stay. Rather than getting lighter with age, pug puppies start out light and get darker. But I think she is as dark as she will get. Which is much darker than both my other two. It helps to tell them apart when they are all running around. :-)

A couple of months ago I posted a photo of Aoife in a little pink jacket. Barbara asked where I do my doggy shopping. Barbara this little pink coat was from Target in their dollar section. I paid $1.50 for it! Such a deal. But for coats and such I usually have to shop at dog specially stores because pugs are hard to fit because of the wide chests. But I've been very lucky in the past and I shop off season. All of the other coats I have purchased for the pugs have been under $10.00 - they really drop the prices in the summer and that's the time to find the deals.

Barbara also asked me if the print in my bedroom is by Cambier- it's not, it's called the Singing Butler by Jack Vettriano - I love his stuff and I have a couple more prints around, just not framed yet.

Colleen in Canada asked if I used a pattern for the dog bed I made. I did use a pattern for the quilt top but the bed itself was just a wing it job. But I've made several pillows in the past and this was just a larger version of a pillow.

Monday, February 04, 2008

another page bites the dust

On Saturday evening I finished up another page of St. Reatham. I estimate that I'm about a third done. I love this piece so much. I need to work on it more often. To refresh everyone, I'm stitching it on 36 count Silkweaver Golden Promises using Vikki Clayton silk in Mermaid Blue 2327. I'm saving the little bunny on the lower left hand corner as my last motif.

On Sunday I started on the new Loose Feathers, Where My Heart Blooms. I have a feeling I'll be working on the house most of the week. :-) It's a biggy.

And lastly, here is a pic of Aoife watching TV. The Animal Planet channel was showing it's 4th annual Puppy Bowl. While this picture doesn't really show it, she watched it all afternoon. She would get really excited when the puppies on TV started to bark and this photo was taken while she was running around the coffee table. :-) Clancy also watched but from his spot on the couch next to me. Molly who is also in the photo, never pays any attention to the tv and is above it all. ;-)

Friday, February 01, 2008

Toccata II Finis

Toccata Number Two by The Drawn Thread
Recommended 32 count cream linen
Recommended NPI Silk thread and specialty threads

I finished up Toccato II last night! I can't believe it's finally finished. One down and two to go. :-)

All went well at the dentist this morning - one root taken care of! Now just a crown or two to go and I'll be finished with him for a while. :-) Actually the hardest part about the entire morning was just driving to the dentist seven miles away. I had somewhere around 8 to 10 inches of snow in the driveway and it took forever to dig myself out. And the drive there was horrible as it was still snowing and the plows hardly made a dent in all the snow in the road.

I'm not sure what I'm going to start stitching on next. I'm still working on St. Reatham as my train project (almost finished with the current page) and I know that Drema mailed me the new loose feather yesterday so I'll be getting that package tomorrow. I think I'll work on St. Reatham until the mail comes tomorrow afternoon and then I'll get started on the LF. I also need to finish putting my peacock chair together. All the pieces are are cut out, the boxes put together and the batting has been attached. I just need to start the real work of putting it all together. I'll think I'll make a start at that also this weekend. But I've got a powerful urge to start another large piece to replace Toccato. Either Celtic Sampler or Cirque des Circles. I'm not sure which is calling loudest to be but they are both starting to talk. :-)

Have a great weekend!