Thursday, December 31, 2009

The Very Long Update - Part Deux

And now to continue...

For this year's Christmas exchange, I received a wonderful package from Nancy!

There's a pack of note cards and matching notepad with my initial, a pack of pins, a fabric bag filled with See's peppermints and a dark chocolate bar (See's is my favorite!), a Stacy Nash Primitives chart (Fancy Peacocks Hanging Pinkeep) with the floss, some lovely paisley fabric, a beautifully sewn sewing pocket two skeins of WDW, crocheted pot holders, and two lovely stitched pieces from the Y is for Yarn from the Y&Z chart by Prairie Schooler - a pinkeep and a scissor fob! WHEW!

As soon as I saw the inside of this sewing case, I knew it would be perfect for holding my double pointed knitting needles and the large pocket in the back is perfect for my circulars! And since I knit, but don't really crochet, the pot holders are really appreciated :)

Here's the outside of the case with the great peacock fabric (Nancy knows how much I love peacocks!) and the back of the fob.

And here's a close-up of the sewing set. They're filled with crushed walnut shell, which gives it a wonderful feel.

Thanks again for everything Nancy!

I sent a package to Gaby - and I just found out today that it finally arrived after over three weeks - I was all set to stitch a replacement piece, so I'm really glad it showed up.

I forgot to take a pic of the entire package, so I snatched hers :).

I stitched Gaby Reindeer Parade by JBW Designs from A Few Favorites and made it into a Trinket Tray.

I used the instructions I found here. This was the first time I've tried this kind of finish and I had a lot of fun with it. I used a Christmas plaid taffeta, which gave it a nice stiffness.

Then I let the knitting bug take over!!

I really wanted to stitch a mini stocking and I found this wonderful pattern!! It's from the blog Little Cotton Rabbits. I love how it turned out! I'd like to make a whole bunch of them and hang them on a garland.

I knit slipper socks and ear-flap hats for Dad my Step Mom and DH this year for Christmas.

This is the third pair of these same socks I knit this fall. They were made with Lion Brand Wool-Ease Thick and Quick with a free pattern from their website called New Cottage Socks The first pair I did in Wheat and kept for myself, the second pair I did in Cranberry and donated to a silent auction and this pair was for my Step Mom in Blossom. I added the suede bottoms because they have hardwood floors.

I knit two pair of these slippers, also a Lion Brand free pattern - called Knit Slipper Moccasins made with Wool-Ease Chunky. The first pair was for DH in Walnut and this pair was for Dad in Bluebell.

For the hats, I knit this one for SM in Wool-Ease Thick and Quick Raspberry. The pattern is Snowstorm (also from

This hat for Dad is made with the same yarn as his socks with an added cream crocheted boarder. The pattern is Ski Hat with Ear Flaps and can be found here.

I used the same pattern for DH's hat, but I still need to take a pic - I just finished the ties on it yesterday.

I wanted to give something to DH for him to unwrap, since I gave him his slippers as soon as they were done and he saw me knitting the hat, so I made this neck warmer. The pattern is from the Bernat website. The yarn is Debbie Mumm Traditions in Adirondack.

My most favorite thing I knit this year was this guy! I found the pattern surfing on Ravelry and it was love at first sight - LOL. The pattern is by Danial Yuhas of Molting Yeti. I used the same yarn as the neckwarmer and it was SOOOO much fun to make! I've already started on the Christmas Trees and I hope to make the Octopus after that.

He looked adorable sitting on top of DH's stocking Christmas morning.

I think that's actually it for craft updates!

I made some additions to my Christmas decorations this year - mostly in my kitchen. This is all stuff I had, but I arranged them differently.

Here's my little kitchen tree - I just wish I had room in my kitchen for a bigger one! LOL

And since I have so many ornaments I took all the balls and piled them in some of my antique silver pieces and put them on the soffet.

And last, but not least, here is this year's Christmas stitching tree (with the addition my little knit stocking!)

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

The Very Long Update! - Part 1

WOW! Almost 6 months since my last post! Thinking about doing an update is a daunting task, so I think I'm just going to work on it a bit at a time.

Let's see - the first thing that happened after my last post was the receipt of the color exchange by Lody. Here are all the purple packages unwrapped :)

Since purple is one of my favorite colors, I had a blast finding all kinds of purple goodies.

I knit another Zig Zag Scarf with some Yarn Bee Boucle Traditions.

I found this Triangle Waves bracelet in the August issue of Bead and Button magazine and I just HAD to try it!! It was tons of fun, I'd love to try the pattern again.

And I tried bead crochet for the first time! The pattern is from a book I bought at the Bead Renaissance show in Ogden in 2007 called Bead Crochet Basics. It was a lot of fun too, but I couldn't for the life of me make the join look nice for a bangle, so I ripped back and attached a toggle.

Lody has much better pics of the package at her blog.

I received my Color Exchange package from Dane. My color choice was a pink and brown combo, and Dane did a wonderful job! You can see her post about it here. She sent two German chocolate and strawberry candy bars (NOW I know why I like pink and brown so much! LOL) and some lovely soft pink Permin linen.

She stitched me a wonderful needlebook and scissor fob by Tournicoton called Rose Chocolatée Nécessaires and sent some fabric, thread and buttons for me to make the matching Biscornu. And she included matching scissors.

I hope to get the Biscornu stitched and finished in 2010.

Let's see, what else?

I made a birthday card for my assigned birthday partner at work and stamped on a CD with Versamark for the first time. I love how it turned out!

Jodi's birthday was in July, but as usual, I was late with her present. I made her some jewelry.

I made this choker based on one on the cover of a book in one of my favorite series - House of Night. I love the choker on the cover of Chosen.

And I made this set from a Bead Retreat kit, but I swapped out the black crystals and used Tanzinite.

The next exchange was Halloween/Autumn and I received a great package from Laura! She sent two fun pillow cases that she made, cup cake liners and sprinkles and a chart from my wish list - Ghoul by Plum Street Samplers.

She stitched me Something Wicked by La D Da and made it into a charming cube. I don't know if you can see it in the pic, but that's a tiny black cat in the center of the bow.

The back of the piece had this wonderful black cat fabric. This was a great addition to my Halloween decorations :)

And I put together an Autumn themed package for Nancy.

I took a class at Kitchen Kneads to learn how to temper chocolate, so I tried it for the first time at home by dipping home-made toffee for Nancy.

The stitched piece was Gathering Acorns by With My Needle and Thread. I'd never put together a pillow like this and I was a little nervous, but I think it came out great. I'd like to make one for myself someday.

I also knit her a drop stitch scarf with some beautiful autumn ribbon yarn.

I couldn't find the pictures I took of this stuff, so I snatched them from Nancy - thanks for the pics! :)

I also had some pretty major finishes!

I finally finished Little House Needleworks Americana Sampling which I started on my trip to Virginia last March.

Then I got on a bit of a Halloween roll...

I finally stitched the Pumpkin Bag by Shepherd's Bush which I purchased at the Shepherd's Retreat in 2006. I also have the other two bags - RIP and Brew. I even think Brew is started. Hopefully I can finished them before next Halloween - they're quick to stitch and are already finished - gotta love that!

And I actually finished the stitching on the Haunted Needle House by Charland Designs from the Shepherd's Retreat. You can see close ups up individual panels on this blog post - I really didn't have that much more to do. Now I only have to do the finishing on it!

I also finished the front side of the Brightneedle class piece Ghosties and Ghoulies. I love this piece! This was an 0n-line class offered by Elegant Stitch in 2006 - another thing I need to finish! :)

And best of all - drumroll please....

My Halloween Fairy by Mirabilia!! I started this the summer of 2006, pulled it back out in June 2007, and finally finished it!! Now I can start on the Christmas Fairy - LOL.

I think that takes me up through the end of October! I'm going to try to post everything else by the end of the weekend - try to start the New Year off right! - LOL

Saturday, August 8, 2009

And now it's August?!?!

OK, I seriously don't know where the time keeps going!

I have to start by saying I had a GREAT shopping day Saturday! We were going down to Ogden and DH said he'd take me to Shepherd's Bush, even though I have SOOOOO many unfinished projects (which I agree with ) and I don't really need any more (which, unfortunately, I agree with too). So I started thinking, maybe I should be buying FRAMES instead of more stuff to stitch - Gee, what a novel concept! LOL

So I went through a pile of finished stitching and picked out 12 of them I wanted frames for and DH and I took them to a local frame shop that makes frames from leftover molding and sells them for great prices. Most of my local stitching group goes there, and I'd never been before - I had no idea what I was missing! LOL

I got 8 frames for $53 and picked out molding and got pricing information for 3 more pieces that will need a custom size so I can get them on subsequent paydays. The 12th piece DH decided would look better as a bellpull (which surprised the heck out of me! LOL). SO, now I've got some framing to do!

I also pulled out a bunch of fobs & ornaments that need hand finishing . I think I have my work cut out for me!! The saddest one is the 2006 Shepherd's Bush fob for the matching Gingher scissors which is 1/2 stitched together! I'm going to start on the fobs first.

We did actually go to Shepherd's Bush because I wanted to pick up a chart for the Halloween/Autumn exchange in my Yahoo group. Unfortunately they didn't have what I was looking for in stock, but they're ordering it for me. I DID end up getting a new chart, which I thought was TOO cute to pass up: Witches Stitch Too!! by Homespun Elegance. I figure it won't take me too long to stitch, and I know where to get a great frame for it when it's done! LOL

So, speaking of exchanges, I had Donna for the Birthday exchange in our Yahoo group in July. I made her some fun things.

I knit a nice wide scarf made with Sensations Rainbow Boucle in Black perfect for those cold Canadian winters.

I stitched a chart from Donna's wish list (I love it when I can fine something on a wish list to stitch) by Plum Pudding Designs called Stitched With Love. I used threads we dyed at out GTG in Wisconsin a few years ago and made it into a pinkeep and scissor fob. The backing fabric was muslin dyed that day as well, so it was a perfect match!

And the really fun piece was a little beaded teapot! Donna collects miniature teapots and I thought this would be so cool to try to make. The pattern is from the December 2008 issue of Bead & Button magazine. The pattern is by Diane Fitzgerald, who always has such beautiful designs! There were a few false starts, but I was pretty proud of it when it was finished.

Before the birthday goodies, I was working on my part of Summer Flowers Sewing Set by Lody that my local stitching group was making for Cindy, one of our members who is suffering from breast cancer.

I stitched and assembled the biscornu (my favorite thing to finish!) and I assembled the little scissor keeper. You can read more about the set on Loraine's blog and see the wonderful bag that Melanie made to match the set.

And something I stitched back in January and never talked about because it was for an April birthday surprise was the little butterfly I stitched for Isle's 50th birthday quilt that Dane organized and put together. It's also one my hand-dyed flosses and the chart is from the French book Repetoire des Motifs by Valerie Lejeune.

You can see the beautifully finished quilt on Dane's Blog post.

I doesn't seem I have much to show for how busy I've felt lately!!

I finished Welcome to Cupid's Garden by A Kitty Kats Originals, again using some of my hand-dyed threads. This is one of the pieces I got a frame for, so hopefully it'll be up on my wall soon!!

I've also been plugging away on my Little House Needlework's American Sampling, and I'm fairly close to finishing.

Almost half of my local stitching group is part of a SAL for Shepherd's Bush Sail Away. I was REALLY tempted to join this one, but I truly have SO much stash (and WIPs and UFOs!), I just couldn't justify it. But it prompted me to pull out another larger Shepherd's Bush kit that I bought years ago called Thoughtful Heart. I'm so enjoying stitching it, just like all their samplers!

The other thing I've been working on is a color exchange - my favorite type of exchange to do! This one is for Lody - can you guess what color she picked? LOL

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Geez, where has the time gone?!?

I can't believe it's been 3 months since I've posted - so much for bi-monthly updates! LOL I've been busy and trying to remember to take pics, but every time I thought about updating my blog, I thought I should be working on "The Token" instead. I'm very happy to report that on Tuesday, only a month late, I finally put the in the last stitch!! YEH!!!

So here is is! Since it's stitched on 40 ct, it really looks smaller than all the work that went into it, but I'm really pleased with how it turned out. It's stitched on a hand-dyed linen, but I can't remember which one. The thread is my favorite Gloriana Cranberry!

Now I can finally move on to something else! LOL Friday, I started Welcome to Cupid's Garden by A Kitty Kats Original. I'm using some of the threads that I dyed myself and I love how it's looking so far. I hope to finish it soon.

Now to be fair, I have stitched on a few other things the last few months when I was away from home.

I started Little House Needlework's American Sampling on my trip to Virgina. Didn't get too far, but it was fun to stitch on something patriotic while I was there.

I also started an Easter piece to work on while I'm away from home. It's Hop by The Trillogy. I bought both of these kits on clearance from Pine Needles almost two years ago - it's nice to finally be working on them.

So, that leads me to my Virgina trip! I went the first weekend in March for the Bead Retreat National Conference in Newport News. It was SO much fun!

Here is a pic of me with my sponsor Sarah (in the middle) and her sponsor Dawn (on the right) before the Black & White themed Friday night awards banquet.

And here is Sarah and me with co-founders Cindi Swett and Lisa Shephard on the final day of conference.

Everything was wonderful, but I have to admit my favorite part was the unveiling of the new Seven Collection catalog! We got to see EVERYTHING in person - it was overwhelming at first - but such a great opportunity! I went home with OODLES of kits to make - and I've bought more since - I just love it all - LOL.

After the showcase of the new collection, some of us went to the hotel bar and broke out our kits. I had a Newport News Mellontini - yummy! But I must admit, I had to work on kit with bigger beads! ROFLOL

In April, I had a Seven Collection open house and served Seven Layer Dip, chocolate cupcakes with Seven Minute Icing and 7-Up - too much fun! LOL

After the conference was over Sunday afternoon, I met Laura and Jennifer in Williamsburg! I've always wanted to go there, and we had SO much fun together - but 1 1/2 days is NOT near enough time to see what I wanted to.

Jen made the cutest little gifts for Laura and me from the Blackbird Designs book My Heart is True. You can see Jen's post about it here, she actually posted about it in a timely manner! LOL

So after we met up at the hotel, we went over to Colonial Williamsburg for lunch at The Cheese Shop, where I got (what else?) a fantastic cheese plate! I was so enamored with it, I took a picture. I actually had to save the rest of it for dinner - that was a LOT of cheese! LOL

We walked though the old cemetery and came across this stone - I loved the inscription. It says: Here sleeps in Jesus united to Him by Faith and the Graces of a christian life, all that was Mortal of Mrs Ann Burges once the tender and affectionate Wife of the Revd Henry John Burges of the Isle of Wight: She died December 1771 in giving Birth to an Infant Daughter, who rests in her arms. She here waits the transporting moment when the Trump of God shall call her Forth to Glory, Honour & Immortality. Oh Death where is thy Sting. Oh Grave where is thy Victory.

After looking around some of the shops, we took an evening Lanthorn walking tour, which was really interesting.

Here is the Battery at sunset.

And this is a picture in the wig-maker's shop by lamp-light.

After the tour, we went back to the hotel, ate, chatted, beaded, chatted, swapped stash, chatted and even stitched (a tiny bit!). LOL The next morning we went back to Colonial Williamsburg and walked around all day.

For lunch, we went to Chowning's Tavern, where I had a delicious slice of peanut pie for dessert! I ended up buying The Colonial Williamsburg Cookbook and made that pie for Easter :)

And here's Jen and Laura in the maze at the Governor's Mansion. I'd always wanted to walk through a maze like that!

Here's what it looked like from above.

And we saw a hornbook in the silversmith's house, which I thought was pretty cool.

Laura and I took a drop spindle class later that day after Jen went home. It was really fun, but I must admit, I haven't picked it up again. One of these days!

I could spend all night showing all the pics I took that day, but I'll spare you that and put them in my Webshots album - LOL

On April 16th, Justin and I celebrated our 20th anniversary!

We went down to Thanksgiving Point south of Salt Lake City and visited the Museum of Ancient Life, which has the largest collection of mounted dinosaurs in the world. We had a great time! When were were dating, we went to a dinosaur museum, so it was fun to do something like that again. For dinner we went to The Harvest restaurant, where I was able to have another cheese plate for our starter - LOL

On Sunday of that week, we drove over to Bear Lake and walked along the beach. Here's Justin trying to skip seashells (there were no flat rocks). He was actually pretty successful! :)

For Easter, I made a FANTASTIC pork roast. I found the recipe on the Food Network website and it's by Bobby Flay. I highly recommend it. I didn't get a chance to take a picture, but trust me on this, it was terrific!

After dinner, we went outside for a little pellet gun shooting. Wanna know what we were shooting at?


BTW, it was me who shot that pink egg :)

Let's see, what else has been going on?

Last weekend I participated in my first craft show. This was at Black & White Days in Richmond, Utah, which is about 20 minutes north of me. It was a very small show and pretty slow, but it was a beautiful day and I enjoyed myself. I hope to be able to do a few more this summer. It's a great way to reach new people!

I also had a great mail day this last week!

Cheryl sent me this piece in exchange for me making a necklace kit she bought from the new catalog (the beautiful Kyanite one on the cover!). This is a freebie from Aurelle called L'ete (Summer) and Cheryl made it into a sewing roll.

It's a perfect fit for my blossoming red-work collection!

And Laura made me this wonderful bag with some of the cutest kitty fabric!

Thanks again Laura and Cheryl!!

I think that about does it for now. I'll try not to wait another three months for my next post!