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Saturday, August 12, 2017

It seems that the older you yet

the faster time goes by, sometimes with you and sometimes without you.  It seems that it's been without me lately, I just wake up and it's a new week, or a new month.

I can remember as a child thinking how long it took holidays or vacations to come and it would take forever to grow old.

But here I am, much older than I was, but not as old as I hope to be, because heaven knows I have a ton of projects that need to be finished before I am :)

I've been working on my tooth pillow needlepoint and trying to decided what to do for the back ground.  The thread was picked out by my granddaughter, so changing it to something else really isn't an option (unless I let it linger for 20 years, then she might forget).

My first try was kind of a zig-zap stitch, but didn't like the coverage, I could see the white canvas behind it and didn't like how it looked.  I put in several rows before I pulled it out.

Next I tried a slanted stitch, but it looked too heavy to me.  Again I did several rows so I could see how it looked next to the animals.  Let me tell you, this one was a pain to rippppppp out.  I wanted the background to recede into the background so the animals stand out so I went with the old stand-by - basketweave.

The monkey might get lost in the dark color, but the elephant and giraffe should stand out OK. I'll know soon enough I guess.

I still need to go back and put in the back on the feet and for the eyes, and will add some back stitching to the elephant so you can see his ear better and the head.

I also posted a picture of the small pocket that will be sewn on above the monkey.  I'm hoping that I can do the finishing myself, so might have to start watching floss tubes to get some ideas.

In the meantime, I've started a new project, I wanted something small in my rotation (HAHAHAHAHA-that's what I'm calling my reach and pull system), that I know I can get done this year and feel like I've accomplished something. I'm saving it for another post, would have had more done today if hubby hadn't found my hiding place at Starbucks this morning.  I enjoy walking down to Starbucks on Saturday and Sunday morning, getting a cup of snobby coffee, pulling out my i-pad and stitching.  So totally relaxing, especially after a stressful week at work.  Since hubby is NOT a morning person like me, it's my time, but some mornings he wakes up earlier than usual and will come looking for me, which is what happened this morning.  But to be honest I'd been there for about 2 hrs. so it probably was time to head home.

I also finally broke down and got a new computer today.  My current one gets very warm, very fast, so I've been limiting my time using it.  I've back up everything from this computer and now need to restore to the new computer!!  I totally forgot to get a new excel program, the one I have could be transferred to the new computer, but I would need the code.  Which means I would need to remember where I put the box that it come in, so it won't restore to the new computer.  However, I would love to have an updated version of excel, that's the nerd in me.

So decided that I would post one last time on my old computer so if all crashes down around me at least you've heard from me one last time.  I'm told (by the guy that sold me the computer) that I will be amazed at how fast it is and will love it. We'll see if this all goes as presented, if nothing else I have 30 days to figure it out.  I'm sure I'll love it as it's another MAC and I've been happy with the one I have now and the one I had before this one.

Sandy




Saturday, July 29, 2017

Last Sunday of July


so must be time to post my monthly progress for WIPocalypse which can be found hear:

http://measi.net/measiblog/   Measi is helping/inspiring us poor souls who don't want to leave WIP's when the world comes to an end, but getting us to work on them during the year.

I won't say all of the WIPs will be done before I die or the world comes to an end, but hopefully there will be a few less.

I love the questions each month, not sure if I enjoy reading what others say, or if I enjoy thinking about it and answering it myself.

This month's question is:

What is your oldest and newest WIP?  I love it

Well my oldest is a kit needlepoint was started back in 1973 - something I was going to "whip" up for a Christmas present for my Mom.  She loves owls, and I had fund doing the owls and the tree branch/stump they are sitting on, but ran out of steam with the background.  there was also a matching barn, which is actually done, so I must have started with the one I really didn't care about thinking getting it done would mean they both would have been done.  Oh well, maybe next life.  As you can see I didn't know much about needlepointing and was going back and forth.  If you saw the full picture you'd see it is totally distorted as well.  I think I will take that out and do it correctly.

The second picture here is my second oldest WIP - I think I started this one 1989 - not sure of the month.  The plan was to put a "W" for our last name in the middle and then do squares for each of kids, like something for their birthday, the different pets we'd had and other things that were important to us.  It is still in the bag I bought the afghan material - I got it as Jacobson's in Saginaw MI, back when they sold crafts in the basement of their main store.  They have long since closed their doors, use to love that store.

I'm not sure why I never went back to this one after I finished the afghan I did for my parent's 40th Anniversary.  It took me almost 2 years to do my parent's between stitching and planning it all out, I finished up just in time for their party.

I will go back and work on this one again, it just might be awhile :), like the owl, it's been waiting this long, what is another year or so?  I know some of you are saying "WOW that WIP is older than me!!"  Well I was just a baby when I started to stitch  LOL.

What is my newest?   I started Plum Street Sampler's Vexation Sampler a week ago.  I've not gotten very far yet mainly because I'm working out the numbers.  I think doing them all in black is boring, so want to add some colors - but there can only be one true line that intersect with the same color - so that will be the 6's in black.  

OK, what have I been working on this past month?  I posted pictures of what I worked on last Saturday with our stitching group last week, so will post my progress on my lunch time project.

I'm a little bit further done than this shows - the brown stem is completed on the small pocket and I have all of the spots done on the giraffe, and all of the legs and the elephant is also done except for the tusks.  The monkey has been started, but not much progress.  I was going to take a picture of it on Friday after my lunch, but got a phone call and ended up putting it away without taking the picture.  Oh well, it will just look like I've done more next month :)  I had to take the spots on the giraffe a couple of times before I was happy with the results.

I went to the fair today and when we walked into the Craft building the first things we saw was Butternut Roads Earth Dancer - and I said to my friends - "I'm doing this one" and the lady next to me, looked at the picture next to it and said "And I'm doing this one", and I looked at her and said "no really I'm stitching this design"  and she started to laugh and said "oh I thought you were just saying that".  So now I know I need to pull it back out and work on it some more - here is where it is now.   While it's not my oldest WIP - it is probably the oldest one that was promised and not completed.  It was originally going to be for my young daughter's high school graduation, well that was about 15 years ago now.  I love it and did complete the Spirit Dancer, I really need to get it done.  Seeing it stitched has inspired me to pull it back out.   Happy stitching, Sandy









Saturday, July 22, 2017

Saturday Stitching

I belong to the Southern California Stitching group.  Over the years we have grown and changed, new members come while some old members have moved out of the area, or just kind of disappeared. Summers always seem to have lower turnout at get togethers, I had hoped to make more this summer, but hubby cut his vacation short and came home.  Since he is retired and home all day and I still work, I feel guilty spending my Saturday's away.  But I have resolved to make one get together a month, because I need to have a day for stitching just for me.

Well today was that Saturday :)  there were only two of us, but that is OK, we find things to talk about while we stitch.  We stop for lunch and today we treated ourselves to some ice cream in the afternoon.

So what did I work on??  First up is Nancy's Needle - Starry Night.  Sorry the pictures are dark.  I didn't do a lot, but got almost two more sides done with the lighter blue. (most butter border)

Second up is my new start!!  Plum Street's Multiplication Table.  I had wanted to start this last week, but just didn't get in the stitching mood.  Now I wish I would have because as I started it and realized that all of the numbers are in black, how boring.  So I decided I needed to jazz it up a little bit.  So while I will do the row of 6's in black, I think I'm going to find a few other colors for the other rows.  The chart currently only uses about 4 colors, one being a dark red, and a couple of creams and a gold color.  I think I might add a green and maybe a blue.  And I think I will change the wording at the top to a variegated.  I know that I won't be completing this the way that it was done so long ago by whom ever, but it's mine and I want it to be slightly different.  So we'll see how this one works out, but for now I'm just doing the grid, which I'm OK is all black.

And the last project I worked on was my SB - Angel's Song.  I know I had said that it was going into the dark recesses for the WIP bin because I was at a row I didn't particularly want to do.   However after thinking about it for while, I decided, just maybe if i got that row done, then it would get a lot more loving this year than it got last year when I hit the first row of Swedish Weaving (or Huck weaving).  So I brought it along and it got several hours this afternoon, the first row had to be taken out and corrected once, but after than it seem to fall in line.  I still need to do one more color of thread and three rows and then it will be done.  This row has 7 rows of running stitches, I have 4 of those 7 done in the picture below.  Once I get those last 3 rows of running stitches done I can either put it away, or keep it in my current grab and go rotation.  Sorry that is is sideways, I'm not sure how that happened, I tried to turn it, but it turned it back :(  

Hope you all had a great week of stitching!!  Now on to a new week and hopefully a hour or so tomorrow morning at Starbucks with coffee.  Then my plan is to come home and stitch while doing laundry - if I could get the clothes to fold themselves I would be in heaven :)

Sandy




Saturday, July 15, 2017

Does a new start get you absolutely giddy?

Well it does me!!  I had told myself - Self "NO NEW STARTS", well at least not until you get something done.  It doesn't make sense that you have 40 plus started projects and you want to start another one.

But then in my surfing the web I stopped off at Spinster Stitcher and she had a link to this YouTube (hopefully I've tagged it right)...... if not you can find it here

http://spinsterstitcher.blogspot.com/2017/07/oh-holey-schmoley.html

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VeJnytnz91g&sns=em

Well this is my new theme song :)  "Let It go, let it go...I'm got more stash anyways!!"  So the new start is totally from my stash :)

So I got my giddiest on and pulled out a new start for this weekend.    Vexation Sampler by Plum Street Samplers.

If you've been following me for awhile, you know I've already done a multiplication table for my daughter's second grade classroom.  I flaked out on doing all of the small squares in the top and bottom borders, but I think it looks OK anyways.

I was going to expand it to the 12's until I found the one above.  Since then I've seen lots of charts with this theme, but somehow having a motif right in the middle of it all doesn't seem right.  So I will work on this one.  Hoping it stitches up fast!!

But did I stop there today?  OH NO, not Ms. Obsessive Stitcher, not the mistress of starts.  I needed to get some threads for my tooth pillow I've been working on (and that is my story and I'm sticking with it), and while I was there I decided I needed a few small canvases so I could do two small mirrors for my daughters' new purses that I stitched.  While #2 daughter's purse is all stitched (red & black), #3's still needs it beads.    If I actually focused I could have it done.  So this is my aim for Christmas - we'll see if it gets done or not.  But don't you think the small canvases will go well with each or their respective purse flaps?

Well back to being giddy and planning my new start!!











Sunday, July 9, 2017

If you think you have money left over in the bank.....think again

Dear Self:

Thank-you for not believing your eyes when the checking account balance said you had LOTS of extra money left over at the end of the month.  You know your eyes don't always see things as they are....hence - taking too much food on your plate or seeing a chart and thinking you'll "just whip it up" in a day or two.   So when you were trying to convince me I could afford to get these two canvases, I'm so happy I waited and looked again later BECAUSE you lied to me!!    Yes, I totally forgot to subtract out my rent for the month :(  so these little beauties will need to wait for another day.  Both of them are by Sandra Vargas, I love her stuff and doing witches is one of my favorite themes.  I would totally love to all of her Wizard of Oz series, but alas not going to happen.  Oh well, I have so much stiff to do in my stash, this was really more of a want than a need.  But don't you just love them????

I have been doing some stitching this weekend.  I decided to work on my SB - Angel's Song.  I managed to finish 4 bands.   One of which had been started at my stitching get together a while back, so maybe 3 1/2 bands would be more accurate.  The next one is a huck stitch, which isn't hard, just not my favorite to do.  It is basically a running stitch of sort - you can see it second row after the second line of words, only this one is slightly larger, but same colors.  So I'm putting it away for awhile again, until I'm in the mood to do that row.

I love this one, and I really do enjoy stitching the rows, especially the ones that are just one type of stitch - goes fast and you feel like you've really accomplished something.  Once it's done with this one I have SB's Promise ready to start!!  I like having one or two band samplers in my WIP's, they are a nice change, and I love working with silk threads.

So what is up for next weekend?  Not sure yet, maybe it's time to bring out the angels for a day or two of stitching.

Sandy






Tuesday, July 4, 2017

Another Stitching Finish

I am enjoying a few stress-free weeks and getting back into stitching.   I take a needlepoint project to work with me for my lunch hour while I watch Netflix (which is currently Frankie and Grace - love it) and then I've been stitching with my southern cal group on Saturdays.  I enjoy stitching and when I have long draughts of not stitching and start again, I wonder why I stopped.  It is so relaxing and I feel so much better after stitching for a few hours.  And the bonus side is that when I'm stitching I have no desire to buy, so its good for my wallet too.

On the needlepoint side I've finished stitching my Emerald City!!  Was debating if I should put some red poppies on it, but not sure yet.  Might add it, what do you think?  Otherwise I'm loving the finish, it has lots of sparkle, as all Emerald City's should.

To celebrate this finish, I re-started the Ruby Shoes!!  I had started with the yellow brick road, but really didn't like it.  So I took it all out, not sure what thread I'll use, want something lighter so it recedes in the background vs. standing out.

So I started with the inside of the shoes, then will go and do the background and will finish with the shoes.  I have some red sequins that i got awhile back with this project in mind.  I just have to remember where I put them.....ahhhh those senior moments.

On the cross stitch front I've been working on a couple of projects.  I did pull out my Mermaid Letter A to work on, but just haven't been feeling that one.  So after a few stitches it was put away and I pulled out my Heart's Content's Inspire Others.  If you've even seen any Heart's Content, you know they are all done over one thread.  I've done Kindred Spirit and have it framed, I think this one is a companion piece and would like to get it done.  So here is where I stopped.  I don't think I was supposed to do the background in this section, but didn't realize that until I had started it and decided I wasn't picking it out.  I think it will be OK and since this is all DMC if I run out of thread I can easily get more.

Last is my With thy Needle & Thread design called Forget Me Not Sampler.  I was thinking of started the words under the picture "When this you see Remember me", and was reading the directions (novel concept) and realized I was supposed to be stitching over two using ONE thread.  Oh well, if I need to get more thread I will.  Since the motifs are not connected if the colors change a little or even a lot, it won't be noticeable.  The words are one over one with the exception of the W and the R.  I'm enjoying this one and will work on it more today.

Hope you are enjoying a wonderful day off.  While I love a short week, they always seem so long.  This weekend the group is stitching in Temecula, which would be fun, but not sure I want to do the drive.  We'll see how the rest of the week goes and then decided.

Until then may your thread always be enough to finish the section you're working on!!

Sandy


Friday, June 23, 2017

Where have I been? What have I been doing??

Would love to tell you that I've been on a fantastic vacation and been stitching up a storm, but alas I've been working and working and more working and not a stitch among the days in May and the first part of June.  

I did slip away for a short weekend to Boulder Colorado for the Memorial Day BolderBoulder race.  I walked the whole 6.2 miles this year!!  Yeah for me!!  My feet were fine, but my hips hurt so bad.  So I doubled down on the anti inflammatories and put some topical cream on them and decided I would live.  What makes this run so much fun are the people that come out - Elvis for example.  

I have always loved what I do, but this year was one of the most frustrating years I've had in a long time.   My load was heavier than last year and I had one person on maternity leave (early, but healthy baby so all is good), two new people and my one experienced person quit without doing their share of work......and top this off with some other work related issues I'd been having and a surprise of a new boss (no notice until the day before he started)...well if I could have found a rock to crawl under, I would have done so and not ever come out.  

I've gotten through the worst of it all, hopefully got over the aftermath of not getting stuff done timely and working my way into the busy but breathable workloads.  Which means I'm back to stitching on my lunch hour!!  So I'm hoping for lots of finishes on my painted canvases, which is what I like to take to work with me.

Do I have any pictures of what I have done over the last couple of weeks?  Sure do, here is my train belt.  All of the stitching is done, just need to do the edge stitch and then off to the leatherer for making it into a belt.  I started this belt over 5 years ago, OK probably more like 7 or 8 years ago when I was in my "belt phase" and stitching belts for all of my kids.  My son's was the last one, mainly because I couldn't find one I liked for him. I had seen one with two dragons, but didn't get it and regretted that decision as I couldn't find it again.  So when i saw this train one, figured I would get it and hope that he still likes trains.  it was fun to stitch because I could use thread I had in my stash.  I have 2 or more 3 more belts in my stash, but I think those will wait.



I also worked on my Mourning Sampler one Saturday, which was more therapeutic for me with the rough patch I'd been having at work.  Not a lot of progress, but happy with it none the less.  I got the wings done, now I need to go back and work on the face and hair again which are over one on 40 ct. (I know what was I thinking?)

So I totally missed the WIPocalypse posting the end of May, and it's almost time for the June posting, so going to kill two birds with one stone here and be little bit early.
May 28 – Which designer’s projects do you absolutely love, but are too intimidated to try?

I don't know if there are any designers who intimidate me, but there are designs that while I love them I know I would be overwhelmed if I started them - like TW's English Gardens.  I love it, but know I would get sick of all the green and blended threads.  


June 25 – Show us your stitching space!  Where do you sit, and what is going on around you while you stitch (TV, audiobooks, etc)?

We currently live in a small apartment, which isn't a lot bigger than my original craft room at our house.  So I'm limited to my chair between two couches.  The TV is directly in front of me and I have my stitching tucked in a footstool and in an old stitching bag under an end table.  

My chair was my grandmother's chair.  I've recovered it twice since taking position of it almost 35 years ago and wouldn't part with it for anything.  My stash is taken over the guest room according to my husband.  The sad part is I don't even have it all here, but to be fair my stash includes quilting, spinning, stitching and knitting.  It deserved its own room :)

Well I guess that catches you up on things.  I'm going to be better about posting and hoping to have something to post weekly.  I'll be doing more stitching too, can't wait.

Sandy