Monday, 1 November 2010

The November Blues

For those of us living in Canada, both Halloween and Thanksgiving have come and gone now as November greets us. November has always been such a bleak month for me with so many people that I've known having died during this month including my father and father-in-law. So I'm continuing my fall stitching since it cheers me and brightens up an otherwise dreary month. I know I should be getting on to some Christmas stitching but I'm just not in the mood yet. By the time I am it will be too late for any stitching, lol! So here is the latest happy dance, stitched in time for Halloween but not quite complete. I originally thought of a cube finish for this one but it's bigger than I expected so now I'm not quite sure how I'll finish it off. Any suggestions?

This week I found a lovely treat waiting for my when I visited the post office. Living in a rural community we don't have home delivery and must stop by the post office each day to pick up our mail. When I checked in on Friday I found a parcel waiting for me. Seeing the return address I knew it was my giveaway winnings from Carol. Oh Carol, this is such a lovely treat!! From the wrapping paper with it's Halloween greeting down to the cute card with greetings from your website to mine. They're such lovely touches! My DH is quite fond of the chocolates he found within and I'm in love with the pin pillow. It's adorable!! I can't wait to try out some of the lovely fabrics both for stitching and for finishing. Then of course there are the Halloween charts and floss. This was a very generous giveaway and I'm absolutely thrilled. Thank you very much!! As you can see from the picture the chocolates have already disappeared!

After opening such a spooky treat I was in the mood to get my Halloween carvings done. Several years ago I got hooked on the fantastic carvings of Pumpkin Masters. I have several books of their patterns accumulated and last year my DS got me interested in another source of patterns from Zombie Pumpkins. So this year I chose a pattern from each source, one simple and one difficult. I knew that after carving the difficult one I wouldn't have a lot of patience left for anything other than a simple one. The most time consuming portion of these carvings is the scraping of the inside of the pumpkins. You have to scrape them thin enough to make the carving portion easier and if you don't it will be too difficult to remove small pieces and the effect when lit won't be quite as nice. Here are this year's displays, Oogie Boogie and Evil Mind. Oogie Boogie is for my sons who are big fans of Tim Burton's The Nightmare Before Christmas. When I saw Evil Mind lit I knew it had definitely been worth the difficulty carving it.

Next up is a picture of my latest start. It's a freebie pattern from Gazette 94 and it's called C'est l'automne. It's pumpkins done in a Quaker style and you guessed it, since it's pumpkins I can enter this one into the pumpkin challenge. I'm enjoying this stitch immensely.

Although I haven't quite been in the mood for Christmas stitching, I have got a jump start on the holiday. I'd booked Friday off work last week which was supposed to have followed a very late night out at my son's punk group performance. However the venue was double booked and Chris' group got rescheduled so suddenly I was left with a vacation day and no plans. I decided to take a drive over to Watertown, NY which is a 2 hr drive from us. They have some lovely stores there where I could get started at my Christmas shopping. Not that they don't have lovely stuff here at home but the sales are just too good to pass up along with our Canadian money being almost at par. So off I went with the hopes of picking up a few things. A few things?? I managed to finish all my Christmas shopping for my granddaughters along with Summer's upcoming birthday gifts and a few items for myself. With a 15% coupon which could be used on the already 50% markdowns I saved a whopping 65%!! As my DH is fond of quoting, I do love to shop! No stitchy items this time, I've already bought my quota for the month. Oh yeah, that was October and now it's November. Guess I can get started again!

Have a great week everyone and may it include lots of stitching.


  1. christmas shopping already eh? well good for you to be ahead of that game. I tend to make things and only buy a very few items which I pick up through out the year at a really neat little shop here in town.

    I am looking forward to finishing off a stitchy piece for my SIL for all the work she has done in our kitchen and now that she is at home I can think of a million things that she could do here. lol
    ain't that the way?

    Have yourself a great week and I sure hope this November comes and goes without any circumstances for you and your family.
    Be always in stitches

  2. Your pumpkins are fantastic! Great job with the carving!

    It sounds like you had a productive day in NY. I'm with you in getting the Christmas shopping done early. I'm almost done mine.

    Enjoy your week!

  3. I love your pumpkin carvings, they're brilliant! I haven't even begun to look at Christmas shopping yet, but Christmas stitching is starting to call out to me :) Have a lovely week.

  4. Hi Lynn,

    Happy first of November ...
    I guess. November can be a
    sluggish month I suppose
    with no special festive
    holidays and weather that
    can be miserable at times.

    And when the anniversary of
    the passing of a loved one
    is involved even a festive
    holiday can't save that
    period of time.

    Having said that I must also
    say that I have found a few
    ways of making November an
    okay, if not down right
    enjoyable month.

    For instance, we put our
    Christmas decorations up
    around the 18h of November
    every year. Plus I always
    take a week off in November
    to relax, and to start my
    Christmas shopping.

    I have another big, eagerly
    awaited event happening in
    November but you'll have to
    wait and read about it in my
    blog after it happens.

    Your latest Halloween finish
    is cute. Is it too big for
    a flat fold?? Or a banner
    of some kind?

    That giveaway of Carols is
    incredible. She certainly
    was generous with her treats
    for Halloween. The pin
    pillow is my favorite as well.
    The fabric with the ghosts on
    it is adorable!! Did you get
    to try at least one piece of
    the chocolate???

    Wow!! You can come and carve
    our pumpkin for us any time
    you like. I don't think that
    I'd have the patience to do
    all that work cleaning out the
    pumpkin properly and then
    making the delicate and careful
    cuts necessary to create these
    Halloween masterpieces.

    Your newest Autumn project is
    so pretty. I'm going to go
    get this one for myself and
    stitch it someday. Love those

    Isn't it a great feeling to
    have some much of your
    Christmas shopping done so

    Have a great week!! Cheers!

  5. I'm so glad you won the giveaway - congrats !!!

    I love the gazette 94 freebie - too cute

  6. Congrats on winning the giveaway. That's a yummy package for sure. Love your new WiP. The pumpkins are so cute. As for your carved pumpkins... all I gotta say is Wow! You're certainly talented.

  7. So glad my giveaway package arrived safely, Lynn! And with my drawing of the pumpkin on the wrapping paper you can now see why I stick to cross stitching--an artist I am not!!

    Your pumpkins are wonderful--love them both!!

    Enjoy your goodies--you can get an early start on your Halloween stitching for next year :)

  8. How about a pillow? Or is it too big? Maybe a flatfold?

    Your pumpkins look so awesome! I've only carved one pumpkin and it was the standard jagged teeth one. The ones with patterns are so cool!

    What a great win from Carol!

  9. Your pumkin carving is amazing, Lynn! Enjoyed your latest stitcning projects also.

  10. Congratulations on having already finished your Christmas shopping. To me it sounds early as I'm a last minute shopper to say the least.
    I'm also in a fall-stitching crush, it brought my stitching mojo back and I just love it. The Gazette freebie you started is a very cute one.

  11. Awesome Halloween pumpkins, Lynn! I do love that evil ghostie one!

    Very cute finish would make a fantastic pillow if you can find a fabric you like!

  12. I'm just loving all your autumn stitching--and congrats on that awesome win!


  13. Your pumpkins are fabulous!
    I love your autumn stitching.

  14. Wow, your carvings are amazing! I used to love to go to a big carved pumpkin display in Chadds Ford, Pennsylvania. Harry Potter, US presidential candidates, etc--they were all immortalized in vegetable form. I admire your talent!

    Love the stitching, too!

  15. Those pumpkins are incredible.

    Me and my Wife carve a bunch of pumpkins for the trick or treaters
    When it's time to carve our pumpkins
    We could not live without zombie or

    Their the 2 best pumpkin sites out there. they put out amazing stuff