Monday, 30 June 2008


A very special Happy Canada Day to all my fellow Canadian bloggers and to all of my US friends I wish you a very Happy 4th of July! I am so blessed to live in such a beautiful country and enjoy its many freedoms.
I had to return to work today following a week of holidays but I do have Canada Day off. If the weather holds we might even take in the fireworks on Parliament Hill in Ottawa. There are a number of free concerts being offered so we're just going to play things ''by ear" for now and see what we feel like doing tomorrow.
I had a very relaxing week off. I wasn't able to do too much in the garden since it rained just about every day at some point. Enough! Some of my poor flowers are water logged and the weeds are flourishing. Like I need that... more weeding, ugh!
I did manage to get up to Watertown for the day Tuesday and picked up some supplies at Joann Fabrics. Okay,so help me out here. I picked up a number of fat quarters while I was there. It wasn't until I went to open one that I realized I can't remove the store's stickers from the fabric. Has anyone else had this problem before? The stickers are coming off in shreds and I'm cursing them . I got so frustrated that I shoved the lot of them in a box and haven't touched them since.
Instead I picked up my stitching to calm me down. Pam, I'm finished stitching your secret gift and I'm halfway through the finishing. I hope to have it in the mail by the end of the week.
I can't show any progress pics of anything I did though because I left most of my stitching in my bag in Bob's office on Sunday after church. I was so annoyed with myself when we got home and I realized the bag wasn't in the car. I always take my projects along with me Sunday morning and stitch while he rehearses before the service. We went out for lunch with friends after church and I just forgot to bring the bag back to the car. It's an hour drive to the church so I wasn't making a trip back just for that. Gotta conserve my gas! I'm hoping we get a chance to stop in tomorrow and pick it up. I really feel lost without it.

There are a number of stitchers in the South Eastern Ontario region who get together every so often for a SAL. It seems that lately I'm always working on the weekends chosen. Rebecca is planning one for July 12/13 and of course once again I'm working. It's not as easy as it used to be to swap weekends anymore either. So I got thinking that maybe while I was off that Dani might want to drop by for a stitch one evening since she lives the closest to me. Friday ended up being the best night for both of us so when she was finished work she headed to my place. I told her to pack an overnight bag and that way we could get in a lot more stitching time. She stayed until Saturday noon and we had a most relaxing time stitching and catching up.
More thunderstorms arrived that evening after her departure but just before sundown the sun poked out long enough for a huge rainbow. I tried to get a better picture than this but the light was too low and the clouds kept passing over. Looks more like a streak of red than a rainbow.
Here's hoping the weather improves so that all of us can enjoy the festivities in our respective communities over the next few days. Take care everyone, especially around those fireworks!

Monday, 23 June 2008

A productive weekend

Despite the fact that I had to work all weekend, I managed to get a fair bit of stitching accomplished. First off is my gift to Pam which I can't show until it's finished and received. I want to get this done as quickly as possible so she's not kept waiting. Plus if I have a good deal of it stitched I'll be able to take it with me on Tuesday to pick out some finishing fabric.
It was steady at work so I didn't take the time to do any stitching. I also had some loose ends I wanted to take care of before my holidays. However it was beautiful both days when I got home so I sat out on the deck to do my stitching. Perfect weather actually... sunny and temps around 24 C ( 80 F) even though it rained most of the morning on both days. I spent the time working on Butterflies and Weather Wise. I spent all of my time finishing the red house on Weather. Had a really hard time of it too. My stitches just didn't seem to be very neat and I spent a lot of time frogging and restitching. At least it's out of the way now.

Butterflies on the other hand is great fun! An easy stitch and the blue is just so pretty to work with. I'm enjoying this one so much that I'm going to have to check out some more of these patterns. I see that Judy is doing a red monochrome of one now.

During my time spent out on the deck I let Finnigan join me. I only let him out for a short time when one of us is sitting out there. He's really not an outdoor cat and I don't let him roam. On Sunday I thought it was best to let him out since my DH was trying to get the back door painted and Finn kept getting in the way. At one point Bob had propped the door open just a smidge to let it dry. I cut through the garage to head out and water my plants only to find Finnigan in the back yard when I got out there. I don't know how he managed to squeeze through that little opening but he did. There was a clump of his fur stuck to the fresh paint on the door to prove it! The door was only open about an inch or so and didn't appear to be disturbed. Usually if he opens something with his paw he pushes it open quite a bit further.

I checked his fur but couldn't find the paint probably because he's a sealpoint and the paint we're using is the same colour brown as his fur.

In any case I thought it was safer to just let him stay out there with me until the door had dried.

He was good company and sat watching me(on Bob's chair of course!) as I stitched.
Last night I was checking out some of the designs added to one of the online shops and discovered a designer which is new to me. MiLady's Needle has some lovely new charts. I love the Quaker Christmas smalls. I'm really developing a love for these Quaker designs. It's funny how your tastes can change. A few years ago I would never have thought of stitching anything like this.
Looks like my plans for the week are changing already. My youngest was supposed to have all his wisdom teeth removed on Wednesday. He needs to be picked up after the appointment and was going to come home with me for a couple of days.When I called him to check on the time I discovered that he has a whopper of a cold. He'd just called the dentist to inform them and no, they won't do anything while he's sick. Now we have to schedule another date when we're both off. Sounds simple but our days are limited by our conflicting schedules plus the fact that he won't be covered under my insurance once he's finished his courses in the fall. I may just have to put in for a "sick" day in order to get this done. I hate doing that but can't book any other vacation time during the summer and don't really feel like forking out the $1600 to cover it in the fall!
I'd also hoped to see my grandchildren later in the week but now Jeff isn't sure if he can make the trip since he might have to work some overtime. This is a new job for him which he is loving and he doesn't want to say no. Guess I'll have a lot more time for stitching!
Aah, I see the sun trying to make an appearance now after all the morning's rain. Keep your fingers crossed, there's nothing I hate more than a week of rain when I don't have to work.
Happy stitching everyone!!

Friday, 20 June 2008

Bloggaversary winner

This morning, after checking all the comments on my latest post, I had my DH draw a winner from all those who commented. Pam, your name was chosen to receive an item stitched by me! I'm excited but also a little nervous about this since this is the first time I've finished anything for anyone like this. However I am so grateful for all the friendships I've made in the past year that I wanted to do something. Pam I have your email and will let you know when I'm ready to ship your item. If you could send me your snail mail (especially here in Canada!) address, that would be great. I've already started work on the item and hope to have it done by next weekend or shortly after. I have a weeks holidays coming to me next week during which time I hope to get in a lot of stitching. However it seems something always crops up so keep your fingers crossed! Thank you all for your comments. I enjoy hearing from all of you.

Since I'm off next week I'm going to take one day to visit Watertown, NY where I know there is a Joanne's Fabrics in the hope of finding some supplies for finishing. I don't find there is much of anything locally. There are also some department stores there that I love to frequent so I'm taking a friend along with me and we're making a day of it.

I promised a pic of my new start so here it is.

The pattern is one which I obtained from My Aunt's Attic. Since these patterns are not named I've dubbed this one Butterflies for now. I'm using a Dinky Dyes silk which I got in my goodie bag at retreat last fall. Blue is my favourite colour and I love the shade of this one. If you haven't yet checked out this particular blog, make sure that you do. As explained on the site, these patterns were found by Lillian Kok of the Netherlands in the attic of her husband's aunt. It is not known who the designers are. There are an incredible amount of gorgeous patterns, all free to download. It's well worth a visit!

Other than stitching on this piece and my stitching gift I haven't accomplished much of anything. It's been a lousy week here for gardening.... too much rain. The rain managed to beat down all my peonies and I was only able to save a couple of blooms for the house. I planted some Gerber daisies in my front garden but I not having much luck with them. They don't tolerate the heat well and this garden faces south so I find that by noon my poor daisies are wilting. Since I don't return home from work until around 4, they're looking pretty sad by then. I'm thinking of pulling them out to put in pots and planting something else in their place.

Not much else going on here right now. I'm working the weekend and will take my stitching along with me in the hopes that it's quiet and I can sneak in some extra stitches. I'm in the mood to stitch on Weather Wise tonight and I also plan on getting in some time on CdC next week while I'm off. Right now I'm headed off to do some baking. I've got a wicked craving for date squares right now and I don't think I've baked anything in the past 2 years since the boys all left home. It's way overdue!

Saturday, 14 June 2008

It's My First Bloggaversary!

I can't believe it... an entire year of blogging has passed by already! During this year I have met the most incredible ladies and made many new friends. Blogging has resulted in an increase in my stitching projects and encouraged me to keep up with my stitching. I would never have tackled a piece such as Cirques des Cercles on my own. It was your encouragement that motivated me to try. Visiting your blogs has opened up my eyes to the world of finishing techniques and greatly increased my stash, lol! To thank all of you I would like to have a draw for something stitched by me especially for you. Anyone who comments on this posting will have their name put into the draw. I'll accept names until Thursday, June 19th and will announce the winner on my post on Friday. Please keep in mind that I'm not that quick a stitcher but will do my best to finish the piece in record time.

Last evening my DH and I were invited to the home of friends for dinner. They live in the most marvelous Victorian home in a small town on the St. Lawrence River called Morrisburg. There were a number of us invited and shortly after our arrival our hosts gave us a tour of their home. During this tour I found some very old stitching. Two were done on firescreens in their living room and date from about 1800. The colours in them are still very vibrant. I think that these are needlepoint. The other piece found on their mantel is The Lord's Prayer (done in French) and is dated 1742. This piece is definitely cross stitch. Our hostess Jill is from the Gaspe region of Quebec and this prayer had been stitched by one of her ancestors. I was amazed at how well preserved it was. What a treat it was to see these works.

I've had another finish this past week. My Merry Tree by Helga Mandl stitched up very quickly. (Thanks for crossing your fingers Vonna, I had just enough floss!) I've really enjoyed working on this one. I personalized it by using overdyed floss, some Treasure Braid and beads. I love how this one turned out and I'm anxious to try another. Last year I ordered some of the personalized name trees from M Designs. They sent me an invoice, I sent my Paypal payment and then nothing. I kind of forgot about them if you can believe it until I started doing these other ornamental trees. I emailed them to let them know I'd not received the charts but got no reply. Finally on Tuesday I called and got Mary herself. She was very apologetic and said they had had some trouble in the past with receiving notification of the payments. Consequently she took my order again and has promised to mail them out this coming week. I can hardly wait to get started on some of them! Let's just hope I don't forget them again this time.

It's been another busy week here. I finally managed to squeeze in some time for dinner with my son Chris who just celebrated his 20th birthday. Our schedules have done nothing but conflict and we couldn't seem to find a day to celebrate. Tuesday evening we were both free and so dinner it was! We ate at a pub in Little Italy in Ottawa. Our table was on the patio and the skys were threatening all through our meal but we managed to escape the downpour. It started to rain just after we left! Chris is finishing up two classes over the summer and then he will have his diploma in Small and Medium Business Management. Some day he hopes to start up his own business.

Naturally since I finished my Merry Tree I've made a fresh start. No pictures yet though so I'll share it with you next post. In the meantime, keep on stitchin'!

Saturday, 7 June 2008

Two finishes and a fresh start

This week's stitching has resulted in two new finishes- Trilogy's Secret Garden and my ornie entitled Christmas Joy. The latter has actually been finished except for the straight stitches for awhile now. I've just been procrastinating and letting it sit while I got on with other things. Straight stitches and backstitching are my least favourite part of stitching. I know there are others out there who feel the same way !

With the finish of these two pieces came the start of another. At Creative Poppy I ordered a set of Helga Mandl's ornamental trees. I'm hoping to get a couple more of these done as Christmas gifts. You will recall my finish of her USA tree earlier. As you can see these are really quick stitches... fun ones too! I'm hoping like mad that I'm not going to run out of floss on this one. I'm using some hand-dyed I already had in my stash by Six Strand Sweets. When I got started it looked like I had a lot more than what has turned out to be the case. Keep your fingers crossed! As you can see this is the Merry Tree. I also have the Snow Tree all set to go.

The heat is finally upon us here in Chesterville. Heat by itself I can handle but the humidity has just been horrid. Thank God for central air! I hate running it too much because of the cost but this week I have my MIL visiting from Windsor. She's almost 90 and is really bothered by the humidity. I think she's entitled at this stage of the game!
The computer I use is in the room in which my MIL is staying so unfortunately my time is limited for posting right now. I'll check in again once she has returned home.
Keep cool!