Sunday, 26 September 2010

More fall stitching

In keeping with the season I've continued stitching a fall piece, most notably one with a pumpkin for the challenge. I enjoyed this stitch so much and consequently I've done no other stitching except for this one. I think this is a record for me. I started this one late Tuesday afternoon and had it all stitched and finished by Sunday. Could it be that I'm starting to know what I'm doing with this finishing business? More likely the fact that it was a very slow week had a lot to do with things. As you can see I finished this one as a pinkeep and I just love the fabric! I've had it in my stash for awhile now just waiting for the perfect finish and this was it.
I found this chart in the Dec. 99 issue of JCS and it's designed by Cecilia Turner of Heart In Hand Needleart. I've stitched it on 32 ct Silkweaver Mocha Lugana using DMC floss.

I know I should be getting back to Halloween Cove but I'm having so much fun right now working on these smalls. I've dug out some more older magazines and I'm checking out my collection of freebies to see what else I can come up with.

Today is a perfect day for sitting and stitching with a cup of tea. My favourite at the moment is Tetley's Warmth which is a cinnamon spice with orange blossom. Mmmmm! Originally my DH and I planned on heading to Gatineau Park in Quebec to view the fall foliage. The weatherman said that this afternoon we should see the sun and the temperature would be cooler but pleasant. Wrong! I've not seen a peek of the sun all day and cooler is the operative word. It's pretty breezy too so that cold goes right through you. Definitely not the weather I'd hoped for during a tour in the park. So we've put it off for now which has meant more time for my needlework.

My Tuesday night stitching group is starting up once again in our new location this week. I'm really looking forward to seeing everyone again. Hopefully there will be some new faces as well since we have a lot more room than at our former location. The more, the merrier! Mind you we do get a tad rowdy at times, lol!

This September has also meant the start of school for the first time for my granddaughter. My DS sent me some pics this past week so I could see her. It's the first time I've ever seen her hair pulled back in a ponytail and it looks so much neater. Is that the mother in me talking? Her younger sister is more than ready for school but she still has 2 years to wait. In Quebec they must be aged 5 before the start of the school year. Here in Ontario they need only be aged 5 before the end of December. So that means she'll be almost 6 before starting! Seems ridiculous to me.

A friend who saw these told me that the bus driver looked very much like me. For those of you who know me, what do you think?

I'll leave you with this photo of Clarisse. She was being a pest while I was trying to sort through stash earlier in the week, grabbing at ribbon, sitting on fabric, trying to chew on floss. So I shooed her out of the room or so I thought. Here's where I spotted her next, trying to look unassuming in the garbage can. I couldn't help but laugh. The quality of the picture isn't that great because I used a low light setting with the zoom. I didn't want to use the flash or I'd get nothing but red eye.
Has the devil in her eye don't you think?

May the coming week be a good one for all and with many stitches.

Tuesday, 21 September 2010


This is what happens when someone challenges me. I joined in the fun on the Great Pumpkin Challenge on Becky's blog .
This way definitely a motivator for me since I seemed to have lost my stitching mojo and just didn't feel like stitching a thing. Stitch pumpkins you say? Well I do love fall and anything to do with it. Throw in the opportunity to win a prize package and voila! My pin pillow Peekin' Tom by Homespun Elegance. This pattern was charted for stitching on 10ct fabric which would have made a lovely large pillow but I decided to give it a try on 28ct. I used some Antique Ivory linen I found in my stash and since I didn't have the required Weeks floss, I substituted with some GAST from my stash. The little lace trim I found at the dollar store. I'm really pleased with the results especially since I don't consider myself much of a sewer. The pillow could possibly have used a little more polyfill but I'm learning as I go along. I also need some practice on my whip stitching.
Now I'm off to search for my next pumpkin stitch. This is fun!

Stitching continues on my Halloween Cove although I haven't much more progress to show at this point. As you can see, I got a little sidetracked. I did manage to complete my LHN Red House In Winter ornament, finally. I thought I'd never get that one done. I can't figure what took me so long either. In any case finished it is. I had to change the floss colour for the snow since it didn't show up at all on the fabric I was using. The white doesn't exactly stand out either but it is a heck of a lot better than what it looked like before. I find that it stands out much better IRL than in the picture I took.

Yesterday was a day off for me and it was a gorgeous day! Since my DH was also off we decided to go on a little jaunt to Ogdensburg, NY where we would make a pit stop at JoAnn's Fabrics for supplies. Gotta tell you, there's not a heck of a lot to see in Ogdensburg but the fall foliage alone made it worth our while. We found a small local cafe specializing in homemade sandwiches and soups where we stopped for lunch. It was a really cosy little spot and after filling our bellies with some awesome food we continued on our tour. The architecture in some of the older homes near the river was spectacular. I wish I'd had my camera with me. After driving through most of the town and checking it out, we headed over to JoAnn's where I purchased fabric, quilt batting and polyfill. Can you tell I'm going to give this finishing business more of a workout in the near future? Once I've retired from work in the spring I intend to slowly try to empty that drawer of unfinished stitches. Wish me luck!

I ran into a dear friend this week who used to teach me decorative painting many years ago. She's now teaching quilting and asked if I wanted to join in. Can I really afford another outlet for stash? I think not. I'd be broke if I was involved in both crafts, lol! In any case she did mention a quilt SAL which takes place every Wednesday evening at her home and has encouraged me to bring along my cross stitch and join them. Since it's practically just around the corner I just might do that. I'm having to step back from many of my extracurricular activites right now due to work commitments. I find I'm just too tired when I return home to head off into Ottawa which is where much of this takes place. I've already done one commute to work. So until I retire I've bowed out of the church choir and I more than likely will not be joining in on my Tuesday night stitching group as often as I have in the past. A walk around the corner is much less tiring. Living out in the country does have its disadvantages in this respect.
Speaking of our Tuesday night group, we have had to change location for our get togethers. In the past our dear stitching friend Sally had opened the doors of her bookstore to us after hours so that we could meet. However this past week her store has announced its closing. The bigger stores like Chapters and sites such as Amazon have made it too difficult to compete as a privately owned store. I shall miss their store very much. It was one place I always paid a visit to when in Ottawa long before I even knew Sally.
So instead, one of the members of the group has found that St. Michael's and All Angels Anglican Church is welcoming us to their church where we can have the use of the church hall on Tuesday evenings. It also opens the door to new members for us. Recently we had to discontinue allowing
new members because we'd run out of room at the store. Now we'll have a larger space which will accomodate more people. I'm looking forward to meeting new stitchers!

Okay so I've taken a lunch break during this post and during that time I've come up with a new project. Grateful Hearts is designed by Cecilia Turner of Heart in Hand Needleart. It's from the December 1999 issue of Just Crosstitch. It's already kitted up and ready to go. I may have accumulated a lot of stash but I really love it when I can just pick out exactly what I'm looking for and have the fabric and floss on hand to boot. I'm excited to get started on this one so I'll leave you now and hope that your able to cross an x or two this week!

Sunday, 12 September 2010

Just give me a boathouse

I'm afraid I have nothing in the way of stitching to show you right now. The frogs have stopped in for the weekend and all the progress I made on my ornament the past couple of days now has to be redone. I promise I'll have some pictures to post in a couple of days. In the meantime I'll show you the pictures of the boathouses I mentioned in my previous post.

The title of this post is something I've said to friends many times. I don't care if I own a cottage in Muskoka, I just want one of their boathouses. After seeing these pictures you'll understand why. I'll let the pictures speak for themselves.

These are just a few of my favourites. They come in all shapes and sizes and as far as I'm concerned they're better than a cottage. I mean, who doesn't like to fall asleep to the sound of lapping water and the call of the loons? I think that's what I enjoyed the most about our rental this year. All of these particular boathouses are located on Lake Muskoka. I think I've accumulated about 75-80 pictures of these beauties. I told my DH that I'd like to head out into Lake Joseph and Lake Rosseau next year and see what I find there. I hope you've enjoyed my little peek into one of my obsessions. After all, you already know my main obsession. I think you're all afflicted with that one!

Wednesday, 8 September 2010

Muskoka stitching

Week two of my summer vacation resulted in far more time for stitching. Can you imagine stitching in the chair at the right?! This Muskoka chair is seen at the entry into the town of Gravenhurst and for us it has always signalled that we've arrived.

As you saw from my previous post, Halloween Cove showed significant progress. Besides that I had a small happy dance. My Trilogy Summer Lineup is finally finished. I got tired of waiting for the petit black beads which I planned on using in place of all the french knots in this piece. Then on my trip to Thread & Eye in London I picked up a pack of the beads. Just one minor point when it came to using them. I had not brought a single beading needle with me. Hmmm, do I wait until I return home to finish this or do it now with the called for french knots while I'm in the mood? I elected to give the french knots a try. It's amazing how easily they came when I was relaxed! And here are the results.

With the finish on this one came the need for a fresh start. I'd grown tired of Halloween Cove and needed a change. My resources were limited since I'd only brought a small number of projects with me. I browsed through my packings and decided to give my next LHN ornie a start.
Red House in Winter has been a really quick stitch. Most of this ended up being done in the car on the way home. Shortly after I started it at the cottage our time was taken up with visitors and visiting.

We were unable to rent our usual cottage during our visit this year. So I scouted the online rental sites and found another rental just down the road but on the other side of the point from our usual spot. This rental was a boathouse on the water and let me tell you, it was an incredibly beautiful view from the deck. This particular bay on Lake Muskoka was much calmer and quieter. We seemed to be sheltered more from the wind there. The boathouse itself was lovely and contained every amenity we could possibly need during our stay. Our hosts were such friendly folks and made sure that our stay was a pleasant one. We had chatted with them about my DH and his specialty of baking banana bread. Would you believe it? When we returned from an outing on our first day there we found a basket full of banana muffins on the dining table with a note asking how they compared! Thank you so much Nina and David for sharing your lovely spot with us. We hope to see you again next year.

One of the things I love to do while at the cottage is to head out in the boat and snap pictures of all the various boathouses on the lake. Over the years my collection of pics has grown and I have several favourites I love to revisit. Next post I'll give you a peek at some of the boathouses on the lake which I've come to love.

Our time in Muskoka was over too soon and once more we were on the way home. We had just left the cottage road and onto the main highway when I spotted something coming out of the woods in the distance. Was that a bear? As we got closer we could see that it was! He was sauntering across the highway and stopped briefly to glance in our direction. I was fumbling in the car, trying to find the camera. By the time we caught up with him, he'd already headed up the lane of a cottage. He refused to turn and look at us again despite Bob honking the horn so I only caught a pic of the back end of him. I'm sorry that it's not focused. I was so excited that I didn't take the time to focus before snapping the pic. I was afraid I'd miss him and then nobody would believe I actually saw him!
The weekend is promising to be a good one and I hope that yours is as well. Take some advice from the saying on my T-shirt in the following picture! From the looks of the size of me, I think I'm enjoying it a little too much, lol!