Friday, 27 May 2016

A Bit of This and That - Warning.... Picture Intensive!

Lots of family get togethers over this month. Between Mother's Day and my birthday we have had a lot of fun celebrating.

On Mother's Day I met with my youngest son Chris and his girlfriend Violet for a brunch. 




I knew that I would be meeting with all of my sons later in the month when it was more convenient for everyone involved. At that time we would have a delayed Mother's Day/ Birthday celebration.

Not being involved with the family on my special day meant that I could get together with good friends Paul & Michelle and Dan & Carol for a meal. We had a lovely BBQ with pork tenderloin, a favourite of mine and of course, birthday cake.







As you can see, it was a special birthday indeed! Oh no, the big 60 as my candles clearly state!

May also means the arrival of the Tulip Festival in Ottawa. This year's offerings did not disappoint! There was a new tulip introduced for the upcoming celebration of Canada's 150th birthday in 2017. It is fittingly called Canada 150 and is a red & white tulip in honour of our flag colours. Here are a few pics of the lovely displays.












The majority of the tulips are displayed at Dow's Lake where the park land is the perfect setting. More tulips can be found at Parliament Hill and at various downtown displays.

Then our holiday, Victoria Day weekend arrived and we were off to Quebec to celebrate with all my sons at my oldest's home. After an afternoon of visiting, I was treated to a lovely dinner followed by a stop at the local ice cream parlour.


Daniel - my second born

Jeff, my eldest and Mylene

Chris, my youngest and Violet

My granddaughters Oceanne and Summer

And of course, my hubby, Bob

It was a really lovely day and rare in that we aren't all able to get together very often. The boys surprised me with a very special gift for my 60th. 




I absolutely LOVE it!!! Chris found the artist on Etsy and the boys submitted photos for her illustration. Then Chris had the drawing matted and framed where he works. In the photo each boy is holding something that is a hobby for each. Jeff - a vinyl disc as he collects them, Dan - a writing journal and Chris - a microphone as he is the lead singer in his group. It was The Perfect Gift!! Thank you so much guys! I couldn't love it more!

There is one more celebration yet to come as Chris has his birthday this coming Monday. I'm not sure at this point if we will be able to meet up with him but you can be sure there will be a small visit at some point. 

Thank you to everyone for making this such a memorable month!

MAY Wipocalypse and MAY Smalls SAL

I know I thought April was busy but boy oh boy has May ever surpassed it! We've had a cool month but the heat arrived here in a big way over the last couple of days and should be with us for a few days yet. 
I had hoped to finish up more than one small for this month's Smalls SAL but I only managed to finish up the piece that I had started last month.
Here is It's a Perfect Day, designed by E Sub-Rosa.



For WIPocalypse, I've continued to make progress on Dreaming of Tulips, slowly but surely.
Each week there has been a little more progress and as of now I'm stitching on the final page of the design.






I would love to have this one complete by the end of June but I'm not sure it will happen with all that is going on here these days.

I'm in the process of picking out a small design for next month which will also be a birthday gift for a friend. Also hoping to find a Canada Day design to stitch as a small. See you next month!

Tuesday, 3 May 2016

A Tardy April WIPocalypse

So April has just flown by and it was a hectic month around here. Unfortunately it left little time for stitching. The first few days of April I did manage to make some significant progress on Dreaming of Tulips. I had completed the first half of this design by the week's end.


Last week I picked it up again and started on page 4 of 6. Here's my progress at this point.

  Besides some stitching on smalls this is as far as I have got on this wonderful piece. I love stitching this one and would stitch the day away on this if possible. However, as I said, April has been a rather busy month around here. For one thing it's a month of family birthdays...... my eldest granddaughter Oceanne, my youngest sister Lana and my niece, Dana.


 I drove to Quebec where my granddaughter lives to celebrate with her. My eldest son and his family have recently moved but it was easy enough to find. I had a wonderful visit with his girls! Oceanne just turned 11 and is a very thoughtful, quiet girl. In my previous post you will see the piece which I stitched for her as a gift. Her younger sister, Summer, likes to have lots of fun and tease. 


 Sisters and great pals! (at times at least, lol!)

 Grandma and the birthday girl

 What are these two giggling about?

Kat has jumped in the gift bag, hoping to hide from all the excitement.

I had an awesome time with the girls and missed them as soon as I hit the road again. I really wish we lived closer!

The next two family birthdays are only a day apart. This is my niece Dana and her mom, my youngest sister, Lana. Lana's birthday is first, followed by her daughter's. 

 
 Besides their birthdays, they were also celebrating Dana's graduation from university with her bachelor's degree in Social Work. Congrats to all!!

April also brought some sadness with it as we learned of the passing of three friends, all on the same day. Two of the funerals were on the same day in different cities so my husband and I split up, each attending one of the services.  
 The third service was for my husband's thesis advisor from his time spent at university.  Bob and John had kept in touch and John was always a strong supporter of Bob's music.
We travelled to the beautiful little town of Goderich, Ontario for his service. Goderich sits along the shores of Lake Huron and is a well-loved summer destination for many. The lake looked rather barren and quiet without all the crowds but it only seemed fitting considering the occasion of our visit.

  
 Despite the solemnity of the occasion, it was a time of friendship renewal as many of John's former students and fellow staff joined together to celebrate his life. For my husband, it was an opportunity to reconnect with many friends he hadn't seen for quite some time. 

On our travels home we stopped to visit one of my husband's cousins. She had in her possession something which she thought I might be interested in. It's a quilt from the late 1800's which had been presented to her great great grandfather on the occasion of his leaving the Methodist church in Fraserville, On where he had been the pastor.

As you can see from the pictures the name and location of each parishioner was added to the squares along with the date. 




   
I found it fascinating! The quilt was all hand stitched and is in remarkable shape. What a wonderful heirloom!

Things have quieted down here now so I'm off to spend some time with my needle and thread. See you soon!

Thursday, 28 April 2016

April Small SAL

This month has been a productive one as far as small stitches are concerned. I managed to finish my granddaughter's gift into a pinkeep, finish stitching a second piece and then start another before the month was over.
 You saw my granddaughter's finish on last month's post but I had yet to do the final finishing. We had originally hoped for a pillow finish but because of its size I decided to do a pinkeep. I thought that it would be much easier for her to display it this way. I also have to admit that I detest using the sewing machine and I was much happier doing it this way. Once again, this is a finish by Blackbird Designs called Bird in Hand. I've also posted some pics of her opening her gift. 






 
Océanne has just turned 11 and she was so pleased that I had remembered to stitch the piece she had picked out. She was afraid that I might forget! I added a little charm to the bottom of the piece which says Stitched With Love. She loved it!


After finishing this I started another Blackbird Design, Pins and Tulips Pincushion which I shared the start of last month. Stitching is finished on this and it will be turned into a small pillow for displaying in my dough bowl.



I changed this up a little. I added a small sun charm in place of my initial. I then stitched my initials in a different colour within the small partial alphabet. 

I've started another new small by E Sub-Rosa called Such a Perfect Day. I love the little spool of thread in this one. It should be finished up within the next couple of days and then on to the next one! See you next month.


   

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