Thursday, 6 November 2014

November WIPocalypse and morning visitors


So Halloween has flown by already and the start of the Christmas season is in full force. We had a lovely fall evening for our trick or treaters and several of our neighbourhood kids dropped by. Loved these little fairies! I wish I'd taken a pic of their wings. They were awesome! As of today there is still about 6 more weeks of autumn but winter is definitely creeping around the corner!

It won't be long before this year has drawn to a close. I'm pretty much stitching as much as I did last year but I've varied from my original choices as I knew I would. My stitching tends to go with my moods. Also new releases often easily sway me into veering away from my first choices. This month I stuck to stitching charts that have been hiding in my stash for a bit.

Two of those charts were finished in the past week. The first is a freebie design from The Primitive Hare called Witch's Kitchen and can be seen on my previous post here.
The second finish is my first of the Fancey Blackett series by Pineberry Lane called Fancey Blackett's Brooms. It's also my first stitch on 40 ct fabric.

I loved stitching this one and it won't be the last Fancey Blackett that I stitch!

The rest of the past month was spent putting in more time on my Blackbird Design, House on Acorn Hill. I've spent a lot of time making colour substitutions on this one because the dye lots of floss for my leaves were just too similar. I wanted more variation and I'm happy with the looks of things so far.

  Just the border remains to be stitched and this will be finished too. Mind you, that border is full of acorns and will take me awhile yet!

 Now my mind has turned to choosing some Christmas designs for smalls and one larger project. Nothing decided yet.
Next week I'm taking a girls' jaunt and meeting up with some of the stitchers and bloggers that I have been chatting with for some time now. I'm so excited! We are meeting up at the From Our Hands show in Peninsula, Ohio.  Two of the designers participating in the show include Stacy Nash and Lori Brechlin (Not Forgotten Farm). Nan Lewis of Threadwork Primitives is also attending and will be rooming down the hall from me. There are also several other blogging and F/B friends attending that I'm so anxious to meet! It should be awesome!!  I'll try and get some great pics to share with you upon my return.

The title of this post refers to some morning visitors who landed in at our place. Literally! Bob went out to change the seed in our feeder and suddenly they were flying in from all directions. Here's a few pics I snapped in the process.

This is the first that we've seen of the female cardinal since spring. In past years she always arrived with her mate around sundown to visit the feeder. This summer he came alone and we wondered if something had happened to her. This morning she was back with hubby in tow.

 The next visitor was a bit of a surprise. We've had woodpeckers visit us before but always the Downeys. For the first time we had the Hairy Woodpeckers visit. I first saw the female on the far side of the suet. I mentioned to my husband that this woodpecker was quite a bit larger and didn't look like it needed any food. 

Then I clued in when the male arrived that these were indeed Hairy woodpeckers. They average about 3-4 inches more in size than the Downeys.

Next Mr. Robin arrived. I think he should be travelling a little further south at this point!


I'm not sure but I think this little fellow is a Nuthatch. 
See you all soon!

Wednesday, 29 October 2014

October Smalls SAL

I had really hoped to get in more than one small project this month but time just got away on me. Consequently this is my one and only Halloween small stitch which as you can see is still lacking the final finishing. This is Witch's Kitchen by The Primitive Hare and is a freebie which is available on her site here.

 I'm already scouting out some smalls for next month's SAL. My mojo has somewhat deserted me though and I just don't feel like any new starts. I must be sick!!

I know that winter is just around the corner but I was a little surprised when I came across this fellow on my way home late this afternoon.

We had a large number of the snowy owls in our area last year due to a shortage of food in their own habitat. The flew further south than they had ever been seen before. I wasn't sure how many we would see this year and I certainly didn't expect to see one here quite this early! Now I'll be keeping an eye out to see if others are arriving. 

My youngest son dropped by this weekend for a short visit. While he was here he decided to get started on some pumpkin carving for me. He picked out a pattern, got my pumpkin cleaned and scraped and then transferred the pattern onto the surface. After that he ran out of steam and I ended up carving out the pieces. This design was a bit of a challenge to carve but the results were certainly worth it.

This piece took about 2 1/2 hrs to complete so we'll see just how ambitious I am when it comes to doing another. 
Happy Halloween!!! 

Saturday, 25 October 2014

October Stitch From Stash

October has been one of those month where I seem to have lost my mojo for a good part of the month. I picked up a respiratory bug early in the month which I just can't seem to shake the remnants of. Most evenings I'm just too tired to stitch and my daylight hours have been taken up with other activities. Nonetheless I was rather surprised at exactly how much stitching I have accomplished. Most of this was done during the past week or so.

As you can see, Fancey Blackett's Brooms didn't advance too much this month.

 Carriage House Samplings Pumpkin Farm was finished off right at the beginning of the month prior to my getting sick. It can be seen at this post here. I dropped it off at the framer this week and will have it back in a couple of weeks.

With this finished off I allowed myself a new start from my stash by Blackbird Designs - House on Acorn Hill. I loved the colour scheme on this one from the very first time I saw the chart. As with many of the charts, either the lighting when the picture was taken or the dye lots of the floss result in far different results when you start stitching. Here are three of the main colours of floss that were called for in the stitching of the leaves and the acorn.

These are 3 different colours of floss but the dye lots of each resulted in 3 floss which didn't give me much variation in colour. The chart also called for Gentle Art Mulberry for some of the leaves and the lettering. My dye lot was so dark that it wasn't much different than the above colours. As a result I've done a lot of substitutions with this piece and I'm pretty happy with the results so far. My lighting here tonight wasn't the best. There really is much more variation in daylight between the different leaves.

I'm pretty close to a finish on The Primitve Hare's Witch's Kitchen.  I counted wrong and had to frog out some of the motifs on the right but all is well now. I should have this finished up by Halloween since only the border is left.

There was one chart I purchased last month that I forgot to include in my count but since it was my exemption month it doesn't count anyways. The chart in question was another Pineberry Lane Fancey Blackett pdf called October Ride. The only monies I spent this month were for the JCS 2014 Christmas Ornament issue. So I spent a grand total of $9.99! Yippee!!

Christmas stitching should begin any time now so I'm checking out my stash to see what goodies I can come up with. Stay tuned! 

Sunday, 12 October 2014

Thanksgiving Greetings

A very Blessed and Happy Thanksgiving to all my family and friends from our house to your house!

Here are some shots of the beautiful fall foliage which I'm so very thankful that I get to witness in my small corner of the world. These pics were taken over the past couple of days during my travels throughout the country around our village.

I'm not sure what these flowers are, mums perhaps. All I know is that they looked so pretty lining this garden fence.
However you spend it I hope your Thanksgiving is a good one, full of family, friends and food!

Wednesday, 8 October 2014

October WIPocalypse - missed the Lunar Eclipse

Looks like my post title will tell you what I was not doing last night. I did not wake early in order to see the eclipse. The need for sleep won out and I slept right through the alarm which intended to wake me for the big event. However I do have a lot of stitching to show for this month's full moon WIPocalypse.

From the looks of my original list I am in fact stitching a number of pieces but not necessarily the ones on my list. I tend to change my mind a lot so this really doesn't surprise me. My latest finish though was one of the original choices from my list. Carriage House Samplings Pumpkin Farm was stitched as a thank you gift for my quilting buddy Thea who has finished off two of my cross stitch pieces as quilted wall hangings and is about to start work on a third. 

Being as this is an older chart, I checked online for any corrections and did in fact find one on the CHS webpage. I was halfway through the sideways house though when I found a second mistake which had not been caught. The house is charted to be stitched entirely in the darker creamy yellow with no separate colour around the door or the eaves. I got thinking that I didn't remember the house as being that yellow and sure enough when I pulled out the coloured cover I noticed the difference. It meant frogging out every thing that I had stitched on the filling in so that I could add that differentiation around the door and eaves as well as stitch the front of the house in the correct colour. I will definitely be contacting them to correct this mistake.
Thea has asked me to pick out the frame for the piece and she may accompany me when the time comes. She was sooo happy when she saw it which made me happy too. Even the wacky pumpkin guys approve of this one!

After finishing this larger piece I allowed myself two new small starts. The first is a freebie from The Primitive Hare called Witch's Kitchen.

The second is from Lori Brechlin's Autumn at Notforgotten Farm book. It's called Turkey Trot pillow.

I'm also back to stitching again on Pineberry Lane Fancey Blackett's Brooms.

Lots of autumn/Halloween stitching going on around here so I figured it was about time I dug out some of my decor to match. I have most of my fall stuff out upstairs but the rec room was lacking much of anything so I filled it with some of my favourite Halloween pieces.

I'm still in the process of unpacking my Jim Shore Halloween tree but I should have it up shortly (if I can find where I stored it last year, lol!). Thanks for dropping by. Hope all my Canadian friends are getting ready for their Thanksgiving feasts this weekend!

Saturday, 27 September 2014

Stitching From Stash - Welcome Fall!

It's an absolutely gorgeous fall day here! It's actually more like summer than fall if it weren't for all the changing colours. I've been busy over the past week doing up some of my previous fall finishes which can be seen on my previous post. Now I have lots of lovely little pillows to add to my fall decor!

In keeping with autumn, I've continued to work on my Carriage House Samplings Pumpkin Farm. I apologize for the lighting in the pictures. My camera battery needs recharging and I wanted to get this post up before the deadline.

Lots of autumn colour and fun little motifs to stitch! It's moving along quite well now. It won't be long before I'm on to the border.

I decided to pick out a Halloween start as well which I've had in my stash since last year. I found a fabric that I thought would work but it was 40 ct which I've never stitched on. Well it's about time don't you think? So I plunged right in and here's where I am at this point.

This is another prim fall stitch which I'm really enjoying. I also finished off another small by With Thy Needle & Thread, ABC For Crow Pinkeep, which can be seen on my previous post. It's also an autumn finish.

As for money spent this month, well, I've decided to use this as my exemption month. I saved a little cash stash over the summer and broke down to use it on many of the new market releases as well as some fabric. 

All told, this spree totaled $170.23 which of course is well above my $25 allowance and is exactly why I have chosen this to be my exemption month. I know myself and I know that I will always spend more in the fall than at Christmas. Why? Well it's because fall is my favourite season and I love so many of the designs out there for fall/Halloween. The colours just speak to me. So I'm begging mercy and taking September as my exemption month. I think I've got things out of my system now and can behave for the rest of the year!

Now I'm off to see what the rest of you have been up to. It's also a beautiful summerlike day here so I'm heading out to the gazebo with stitching in hand. Enjoy your day!