Wednesday, 31 December 2014

December Smalls SAL - Final Post of 2014

December 31....the last day of 2014 and my final post for not only this year but the Smalls SAL. I have really enjoyed being a part of this group over the past year and have added my name to the growing list of participants for 2015. If you haven't already done so sign up and join us. It's a lot of fun and encourages you to increase your number of completed small stitches or ornaments. You can join us here.

I finished up my final small on Christmas Day in the evening after all the excitement of the day had settled and the drowsiness of a satisfying meal was drifting over us. 
This design is called So This Is Christmas (pretty self explanatory!) and has been designed by Jenny Hoffman of Country Rustic Primitives .

I'll be staining this one with either some coffee or walnut stain to make it a bit more primitive. Then it will be finished up into a small pin pillow.

Speaking of pin pillows, here are the bunch which I finished up for display this year. Only the larger pillow with the Merry Christmas and the 2 deer was finished last year. The rest were all either stitched or filled this year. I am now using a mix of walnut shavings and crushed walnut shell to fill my pillows. In addition I added ground balsam shavings to these for that extra Christmas touch. They smell wonderful!

These pillows from lt to rt are as follows: Threadwork Primitives Be Ye Merry, The Little Stitcher Merry Christmas Deer, Blackbird Designs Floral Gift, Gettysburg Homestead Merry Christmas, and in front, Primitive Acorn Keep Christ in Christmas and Jenny Hoffman's Ornaments for Christmas. I love displaying these as part of my decor and have received so many compliments in regards to them. Some of my stitching friends have asked if I could host a day of finishing in the new year so they could learn how to do their own. It should be fun!

That's it as far as it goes for small finishes. I'm continuing to plug away on Promised Lamb hoping to complete the better part of this one before the end of the year. As of yesterday I seem to be winning the battle. I would like to have to carry very little of this one over into the New Year.

My hubby and I have both been ill with colds and flu so we have not been going anywhere lately. These pics were taken the morning of Dec. 30 and I am already further ahead on this one than it shows in these pics. The lettering has all been completed now and I'm working on finishing up the final motifs so that only the left hand border will remain by the end of Dec. 31. That will leave me open to several new starts in the New Year. I've already picked and kitted up my small for the month of January. Bring it on!

I wish each and every one of you of very Happy New Year and look forward to meeting up with you again in 2015.

Wednesday, 24 December 2014

Merry Christmas

Sending Merry Christmas greetings to each and every one of my blogging friends. May you enjoy your day in the company of those you love and keep in mind that it was He who came down to give us the gift of eternal love.

Saturday, 20 December 2014

December SFS

I can't believe that this is my final SFS post for 2014. How quickly a year seems to pass by anymore! It's been a wonderful first year and I have very much enjoyed being a part of this group. Thank you Mel for all the hard work you have put into making this work. I very much appreciate all your efforts!

This month I have been working on a new start, Plum Street Samplers Promised Lamb. It's a lovely Christmas design that was a gift last year. I know that I won't have it finished in time to display this year but I look forward to having it grace my walls next year.
Here's where I am at this point in time.

I've also finished the stitching on three more ornaments. Two of them can be seen here on my last post. I will post a pic of the third one on my final Small SAL post at the end of the month.

I ordered 2 patterns this month. One is for my Smalls SAL which you will see on the next post. Cost - $7.50. The other is a new release by Brenda Gervais of With Thy Needle & Thread called Heap on the Wood. Cost - $13.00. So my total for this month is within the $25.00 limit.

I wanted to show you a pic of some needlepoint that I spotted at a friend's home last week. My husband directs 2 community choirs and following the concert of one we were invited back to the home of one of the choir members, Dan. Dan lives in a lovely Victorian style home and collects antiques. I found this beautiful piece hanging on the wall in the powder room.  The frame is gorgeous! Click on the pic for a better view.

Dan loves antique needlework and has several other pieces throughout his home.

Christmas preparations leave very little time for stitching during the month of December. I decorated my home 2 weeks ago with the exception of the 2 trees which went up this week. Here's a pic of my twig tree on which I display cross stitched ornaments along with a few other small ones. The 2 porcelain cat ornaments were a Christmas gift last year from a dear friend. They're unusual and soooo cute!

Here are a few more pics of Christmas decor.

 I love bottle brush trees because they remind me of Christmas as a child. My grandmother had one or two but she also had several of the bottle brush wreaths which I have been unable to find.

All that remains now is to put out my Nativity scene. It didn't get put away in its usual spot last year and I just found it yesterday.

Now I'm off to finish wrapping gifts and to get started at some Christmas baking. I'd like to wish all of you a very Merry Christmas. Enjoy the season!!


Saturday, 6 December 2014

December WIPocalypse

I can't believe it but the year is almost over. This is the last WIPocalypse report for 2014. December is in full swing now with very little time for stitching.The above picture was taken less than an hour ago and signals the end of daylight for today. The day was mild although overcast and I'm not sure that we're going to see that full moon tonight. 

I don't have a lot of stitching to report since last month. I've completed a couple of smalls and started a larger project. My small finishes include Teresa Murgida's Keep Christ in Christmas and Jenny Hoffman's Ornaments for Christmas. Neither has its final finishing complete yet.

My new start and larger project is Plum Street Samplers Promised Lamb. I'm stitching this one on 35 ct WDW Confederate Grey. Not much to show yet but hopefully I'll have made much more progress by the new year.

I have a couple of other smalls that I want to start before Christmas but I'm not sure how much time I'll have.

This week my local village craft group got together as usual but we gathered for a potluck first. It's a Christmas lunch but our hearts were heavy this year since just days before one of the group passed away.

 Joyce was a breast cancer survivor of 13 years but just one month ago her cancer returned. I was shocked when I heard she was gone so fast. She was an amazing woman who loved crafting and loved sharing and teaching it to others. She had cross stitched many years ago but she loved quilting and knitting. She shared this love with so many children both at the campsite in summer and at her winter home in the south. When once asked how many children she had she replied, "As many as 100!". Rest in peace Joyce. We'll miss your ruddy cheeks and that precious smile.

We decided that our lunch would be a tribute to Joyce so we had a toast in her honour and then continued with our regular get together. I'm the only cross stitcher in the group. A lot of the ladies love to quilt, crochet and knit. Here's a small sampling of their current projects.

Beate with her crocheted German Christmas curtain

Lois' beautiful afghan

Monique putting together her sweater

Andrée's lacy ribbon scarf

Helen modelling her mitten

Virly's baby sweater

Virly is the lady on the left in the above picture. She's the oldest member of our group. I don't remember her exact age but I do know that she is over 90. She is not sewing and quilting as much now that she's moved into a retirement residence but here is a pic of the bag she completed last summer. Love those purples!

 So our lunch on Wednesday was the second of three potlucks I'm participating in this week. The final one will take place tomorrow night following my husband's choir concert. For each of these I've taken the same thing - pumpkin butterscotch gingerbread trifle. 

  It's been a big hit and I'm sure it will go over well tomorrow as well. Yummy!!

Enjoy your weekend and I'll be back with another post soon.