Thursday, June 30, 2011

Want some wine

with that whine? 

I have a WIP picture and a complaint.  First I'd like to explain why I don't post WIP pictures very often...which is not what I'm going to whine about.  I took this picture on Monday before stitching the whole roof, the door, and the rest of the letters.  So now when I look at the picture I think I should take a new one to show how much more is done.  It's always like that... if I just wait one more day I'll have so much more done to show everyone.

ABeeC Sampler by Country Cottage Designs.  One of my Crazy January Challenge pieces.  

 That pattern has sure taken a beating.  It's been to Florida and back so got a little crunched up in my bag. 
This second picture illustrates what is causing my fits.  I have used up every last bit of Crescent Colour's Poblano Pepper with the exception of this last skein which is an entirely different color!  So maddening.  Last fall Barb, of Stitching Again, wrote this post  illustrating that very thing.  I'm not sure if I should keep stitching on this piece or what.  I hate to invest the time if it's just going into the UFO pile.

I am lucky enough to have 2 cross stitch stores in my area but neither carries Crescent Colours.  I wrote to my favorite online store (where I've spent a whole lot of money over the years, I might add) asking for a little personal service in choosing a darker skein for me and I HAVEN'T HEARD BACK.  I'm not happy and I'm not going to forget. 

So, what's a stitcher to do?  I'm going to contact another online store and see if they'll look at their inventory and pick a darker green for me.  If not, I'm going to give serious consideration to not stitching pieces that use threads we can't easily get.  Designers need to get the message. If we can't get the supplies, we can't stitch their designs.  Both my local shops have told me the same thing.... they can't afford to stock the entire line of whatever threads designers decide to use.  They stick with the tried and true Week's and Gentle Arts.  I get it.  They don't know what designs are going to be a hit and continue using a thread line, making the investment worth it.  Local shops struggle.  We're lucky to have the ones we do so I'm not faulting them.  I'm just whining! 

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Anyone home?

You all must think I dropped off the face of the earth.  Not so much.  Mostly I've been sick which means nothing worth mentioning has been happening.  I had to curtail all sorts of plans while forcing myself to continue with things that just couldn't wait..... like all the doctor's appointments for kids leaving for their summer jobs.  It's hard for me to miss work so I had to drag myself out of bed and go there.  It was all the fun stuff that had to be missed like our family graduation dinner and a co worker's retirement breakfast.  Such is life. 

We did watch the Boy Wonder graduate high school.  What a proud moment.... those tassels show he graduated with honors and as a member of the National Honor Society. 

That's him in the middle. 
The kitty and I have been doing the same thing.  Watching the nest empty.  In that hanging basket there was a nest of house wrens.  We've been watching 5 babies grow and slowly leave the nest....much like what's happening in the house.  The Scholar and The Boy Wonder have left for their summer camp counseling jobs.  While they return each weekend to catch up on sleep and do laundry, they've essentially left the nest.  They'll both only be home a few days at the end of the summer before heading off to college.  I have 8 weeks to prepare for that so we won't go down that road quite yet.  

I have stitched a little.  However, today is a very gray and dark day so I won't even try to get pictures.  The sun is supposed to shine tomorrow. 

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Block of the months

have a draw that I can't seem to resist.  They're usually for more complicated quilts... the kind that you'd look at and feel over-whelmed you pass them by.  The idea is simple.... break it down into 6 or 12 steps that are much more manageable.  Then, only send 1 month at a time.  I'm a sucker.  I sign up, I see myself keeping up, I start (maybe), then get involved in something else.  I will eventually get back to it and finish.  I've proven that over and over again, so I continue to admire BOM kits and have most recently signed up for 2 such projects! 

First, this photo is of a block of the month quilt that I made by taking a class at my local quilt shop.  I showed it in a blog post last May..... but it's the basis of what made me sign up for the first of the 2 I'll show today.

It hangs in a hallway and I love it every time I see it.  (I think it's redder in real life)

So, when I saw this quilt I knew it was the perfect compliment to my house quilt.  

This one is thru Shabby Fabrics.  (Which is where I also got the picture.)

This next one is from Quilting by the Bay and is called The Great Pumpkin.  I love anything fallish with pumpkins. 
Don't they both look great?  I can't wait until they start arriving. 

On the cross stitch front..... I've put aside my Crazy January Challenge pieces to start another challenge..... this one is less formal... leaving room for my not-so-creative mind to personalize it.  Read all about it here.  Somehow I suspect mine will have a strong resemblance to the original. 

Now, if there would just be something worth watching on tv so I can get back to my usual stitching schedule.  It doesn't help that our DVR imploded and took all our taped programs with it.  Darn technology. 

Monday, June 13, 2011

In two weeks

all the end-of-year festivities will be over and the 2 older kids will have reported to camp to begin their summer jobs.  Maybe THEN I'll have some stitching time.  Last week was the busiest, by far.  It doesn't help that I snuck a little R&R with The Scholar into the schedule.  This week begins finals so I will still be doing some driving back and forth to school. Soon that will be finished.... until swim practice starts in August, and dance classes, and summer music lessons.  Oh, it's best to not think ahead! 

In the mean time, when we're not off celebrating someones school or extra curricular successes, we've been working in the yard.  We're still working on establishing the landscaping and flowers around the house so each year we fuss and fix, hoping to enjoy flowers and greenery all summer long.

I snapped a photo that makes me happy we have a fence around the pool area protecting all sorts of beautiful flowers....

They were just grabbing mouthfuls of those flowers and ripping them from the bush.  They were cute to watch, but I'm certainly glad they weren't doing that to the flowers that I lovingly planted.

Has anyone ever seen one of these??  (I had to get the picture from Google Images because no amount of waiting around with my camera led to a picture of my own.)
This is a Bumblebee Hummingbird.  They're about 2 inches long and, apparently, rare around these parts.  He was something to see.  I watched and watched until he flew off.  Now I'm stalking all my plants that draw the bees and the regular hummingbirds in hopes of seeing it again.

Must run.....Buttercup has her first final this morning.  Soon I'll show you the 2 BOMs I signed up for to keep me busy this fall when I'm down another child. 

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Dead or alive?

That's the question I bet you're asking.  I haven't fallen off the edge of the earth either, despite evidence to the contrary.  I think we'll have one more very busy week then everything will settle down.... cross my fingers and knock on wood.

I had to stop in and show pictures from my quilt guild end of the year dinner Monday night.

Remember from this post the project we did in my quilt guild?  At Christmas we had a secret exchange where we placed 3 half yard cuts of fabric in a bag.  Participants received a bag of fabric and had to create something from what was inside.  At the end of year picnic we gave the bags back to their original owner after making it into something.  I made a table runner and received the same.  Isn't it cute? 

The fabrics I included in the bag were the dark green, red with ants, and the watermelon in the center.  I thought the novelty fabric would be easy for someone to work with.  We were allowed to add some fabric and my quilter added the light green and the watermelon border fabric. 
Everyone had so much fun opening their bags... not to mention how fun it was to watch what people made.  There were lots of table runners, a few bags, and a wall hanging or two.  Sorry I don't have pictures but it all went kind of fast and didn't lend itself to picture taking.  Happily, the same program committee that came up with this idea is staying on for another year.  Can't wait until September to see what they come up with for the next year. 

Thanks for stopping.  I should have something to show soon, even if it's just a couple WIP pictures.