Wednesday, July 30, 2014

A Few Things….

I can't believe July is almost over!!  It's been a busy month, probably because I've gotten the bug to paint and "remodel" the two bedrooms in our lower level.  More on that later….

I was the lucky recipient of a LK traveling pattern from Pamela at Hokkaido Kudasai.  Can hardly wait to stitch it!!  Then it's off to another lucky stitcher.

I stitched a biscornu for the Hooked on Exchanging group I belong to.  It hasn't arrived at it's destination yet, so will be sharing a picture when I get the thumbs up.  HOWEVER, I received mine yesterday from Carol S, accompanied by a lovely Mirabilia Designs card - "June's Pearl Fairy".  I LOVE it!  Thank you, Carol!!

Here's my Smalls SAL for July.  "Joyful" is a design from the "Just Cross Stitch" July/August 2013 issue by Debbie Booth of My Big Toe Designs.  It measures 2 1/2 x 1 2/3".  I added the tiny silver charm.

The iStitch exchange piece I stitched and sent off is called "Strawberry Fields".  Alas and a lac - my exchange partner never received it.  It's circulating somewhere in the US mail.  (SOB!).  I really, REALLY liked it - so will share some pictures.

I stitched a replacement piece and sent it off - this time with a tracking number - so I can ensure it arrives safe and sound.  As soon as I know my exchange partner has it in her hands, I'll post pictures.

I've been working and working on the 25 gift bags for my daughter's baby shower - pictures of those to come, too!!

Keep yourself surrounded by stitches ~ Cheers ~

Saturday, July 26, 2014

Christmas in July Swap Linky Party

OK, you Elves - pop on over to this link and hook up to the Christmas in July Linky Party!


Friday, July 25, 2014

My Elf was SOOOOOO Good to Me! Plus a Give Away…..

I opened my Christmas in July Swap gifts this morning - I couldn't stand it any more!  Look at how neatly these were wrapped - and all with a handmade tag.
My kind Elf, Carol-Ann, sent these goodies:
A wooden NOEL door hanger, the tiniest, sweetest angel ornament (how did you do that, Carol-Ann??), a lovely 12 Days of Christmas Mug Rug and scrumptious chocolates.  (I had to snap the picture fast, because the chocolates have a short life in this house - HA!).  PLUS a little pattern from Freckles & Company - from right here in Iowa!

Thank you, Thank you, Carol-Ann.  I love it all.

OH!  Anna doesn't have a blog, but she shared her gifts from lovely Kaye at Kitten Stitching.
Anna's Elf (aka, Kaye) delivered her parcel personally.  It turns out they had lost touch with each other and have rekindled their friendship.  Isn't that wonderful?  (I feel like a fairy godmother ;)).

Looking forward to seeing all the gifts - stay tuned for a link tomorrow so we can all share our good fortune.

P.S.  There are a few who haven't received their parcels yet.  I know they have been sent and are coming from overseas.  Keep a watch out for your mail man…..hopefully the goodies will arrive shortly.

OH!  Pop over to Victorian Motto Sampler - she's having a fabulous give away to celebrate her birthday!!

Keep yourself surrounded by stitches ~ Cheers ~

Thursday, July 24, 2014

July Round Robin

I received the most GLORIOUS package from Lynda at Purple Pixie Dust - the Round Robin for July.

 Lynda Ruth was so gracious - the rose vase in the middle is the RR piece (I LOVE it!!).  She also knew how much I enjoy tea, so stitched a little tea themed-piece, complete with some herbal tea and threads so I can finish it off.  And - OH MY - look at the scrumptious rose fabric!  Not to mention the lotion, the Canada bracelet and pencils, tiny stones…..and some chocolate (but the chocolate didn't survive long enough to make it into the picture - HA!).
 Last, but not least, Lynda Ruth sent all these lovelies in a sweet padded pink bag, just perfect for stashing my stitching and carrying with me while on the go.  Lynda Ruth, you've spoiled me ~THANK YOU, THANK YOU ~
Here is the stitched RR piece I sent to Lynda.  There was some floss, fabric and some other goodies in her package, too.

OOOOOOOO - Christmas in July package arrived yesterday ……..I am itching to open it……mut must wait until tomorrow.  SIGH I feel like a little child on Christmas Eve….:)

Keep yourself surrounded by stitches ~ Cheers ~

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Jenny of ELEFANTZ is Celebrating with a Give Away!!

Jenny of ELEFANTZ is having a marvelous giveaway celebrating the creation of her new quilt.  Pop on over and see what she has to offer - you won't be disappointed.

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Give Away(s) from Epic Stitching

Mel from Epic Stitching has thrilling news.  She and her blog will be in Cross Stitch Collection magazine.  Isn't that exciting???  To celebrate, Mel is having TWO giveaways.  Hop on over to her blog and enter.


Saturday, July 19, 2014


What the heck is LVIII??  That's how old I am today.  I don't feel a day over 30 - except on those days  I feel 70 - HA!

I have such great friends - I received this beautiful baby blanket from my friend in CA.  It was knitted by my mother in 2008 for S's grand daughter.  Knowing my daughter and her DH will be having their first baby in October, S sent me the blanket in memory of my mother.  Wasn't that thoughtful and sweet??
And here is a great surprise from Jacquie!!  The cutest card and an embroidered tea bag holder with yummy tea!  The package was wrapped in white tissue paper with the most darling button as the bow.  It looks like it matches the card!  (How did you manage that, Jacquie??). Thank you SO VERY MUCH for thinking of me!!
I also received these wonderful treats from my SL in Hawaii.  She always manages to surprise me - and knows the way to my heart.  Hawaiian teas, a little stuffed monkey with a bib to cross stitch for the new little ones, another glorious cross stitch pattern and threads ("Q is for Quilter") from The Victorian Sampler, and a Stitch Starter from Blue Ribbon Designs.  Can hardly wait to sit, sip and stitch. Thank you, Val!
Dinner tonight with DH and my delightful Father-in-Law.  What more of a perfect day could a Birthday Girl ask for?

Keep yourself surrounded by stitches ~ Cheers ~

Thursday, July 10, 2014

Biscornu HELP!!


I've stitched a lovely (free) biscornu heart pattern I found on the internet.  It measures 3 x 2.75 inches.  When I started to stitch it together, I realized, since it's not a perfect square, I was up a creek without a paddle.

I've never stitched one that wasn't square.  Does anyone have any guidance on how to finish it off into a biscornu?  Maybe I should put the pieces aside and use another pattern??

I'm keeping myself surrounded by stitches - how about you?   ~ Cheers ~

Monday, July 7, 2014

By Golly, I Did it!!

I love to make things for others.  I feel when I give someone something I've made with my hands, I give them part of me - and my heart.

With the baby shower looming in the not-too-distant future, I started thinking about what I could do to make the day extra special.  Not only for my daughter and husband, but for those who'll be our guests. Whatever it was, needed to be something they could take and re-use - not something they would just throw away.


A gift bag!  Not just any gift bag, but a nice, lined bag.  Something classy and tasteful.  I set out to find a pattern I could handle.  And, thanks to dear Jacquie pointing me to "Sweet Sentiment" a book by The Bird House, I found the perfect pattern.  I couldn't resist a tea theme ;0)
 And here's the inside:
And the bag, again, nestled with my tea needlepoint pillows:

Now the fun begins!!  Off to the fabric store to get material to make 25 gift bags for the shower.  Hmmmmm…….think I'll be friends with my sewing machine by the time I'm done?  (Hope so).

Grabbing my purse and coupons - off I go!  ~ Cheers ~

~ Keep yourself surrounded by stitches ~

Sunday, July 6, 2014

Parsley Give Away ~

Parsley (Seasons of my Mind blog) is having a fabulous give away to celebrate her becoming an official EMT.
A HUGE CONGRATULATIONS!!!!  I'm sure it was countless hours of study and work - EMTs are so needed and so wonderful.  I met several over the past year when my mother was so ill.  Compassion, professionalism, patience and skill were characteristics of each and every one.

I encourage you to pop over and visit Parsley's blog and convey hearty congratulations.


Shrinky Dinks Adventure, Block and Tea

Lynn from Happiness is Cross Stitching had a tutorial on creating plastic tags.  Well, I can't resist trying something new, so ran out to Hobby Lobby and purchased "Shrinky Dinks" - love those 40% off coupons!!

Well, here is my first attempt at making these fun tags.  I learned a lot (like - don't make too many at a time.  When you take them out of the oven you have to be QUICK to press them flat or they are curved for life…..or they break - COUGH!).
I see all sorts of possibilities for other designs in the future - WOW!  What FUN!!!!!

Here is the next block from Jenny's Quilt Stitch Along:
And - last but not least - more from my tea collection:
A beautiful "tea for one" with Celtic designs (I see it was a bit crooked when I snapped the photo).  It was a gift from my mother.  The top of the lid says "May your blessings outnumber the shamrocks that grow."

And a Royal Albert tea pot with the "Old Country Roses" design.  Peeking out behind the pot is a crystal biscuit jar.

I'm stitching some things but can't show you right now because they're for some exchanges.  The Christmas stocking is S-L-O-W-L-Y coming along.  Hopefully I can show you some progress next week.

Until then - Keep yourself surrounded by stitches ~ Cheers ~

Saturday, July 5, 2014

Gifts from Friends and Baby Shower Guest Gift Ideas

All my friends know I stitch and how much I love it.  Two of my friends were at estate sales and found these for me -
The standing bag is fill of vintage threads for punch needle.  Not quite sure what to do with all of them (I've used floss for punch needle before) - but - WOW!!  What a surprise.  They are the best.

My best friend from junior high and high school and I are co-hostessing my daughter's baby shower in August.  There will be 20-25 guests.  All women (except for the father-to-be).  I had the brilliant idea to make something for each guest to take home as a momento of the event.  But there I stopped.  Ideas?  My first thought was a cloth gift bag - filled with "It's a BOY!" mints, etc.  Just a thought - any ideas or suggestions from anyone?  I'm open for any and all ideas.  I need to decide by the end of next week what I'm going to do so I can get the needles/sewing machine/ glue gun/ whatever going.

A huge THANK YOU for any ideas you can share.

In the mean time - Keep yourself surrounded by stitches ~ Cheers ~

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Tea and Panic

I love a good cup of tea.  I enjoy coffee, but LOVE tea.  To quote Jean-Luc Picard, "Earl Grey - HOT!" is a perfect way to start my day…..and I generally do.  Given my penchant for collecting things I love, tea themed things are one of them.

We have built-in oak shelves in one corner of our kitchen and I display some of my collection here.
 I painted the rose tea tray on the back left; the two little tea pots on the left are from a dear friend in CA; the Belleek coffee mug is from my best friend and the Lenox Irish Cottage tea pot was a gift from my mother.  Can you see a mini-Bella laying in front of the cottage?  And - LOOK! - there's Bitty Bear ready to serve tea.
I  painted the Limoges trembleuse (Trembleuse cups and saucers were specifically designed for a person who suffered from the trembles and were virtually "spill proof").  The Royal Albert "Old Country Roses" creamer and sugar was a gift from a dear friend, as was the book "If Teacups could Talk".  On the far right you'll see a mug purchased on my first trip to Ireland with my mother.  It was made at the Tara Bone China factory in Galway.  Sadly, it closed shortly after our visit.  It says "There is no fireside like your own fireside".  On the back is the same saying in seanfhocal or Old Irish.

There's more of my tea collection - but I don't want to bore you…..maybe more in a future post.

"Don't Panic!!" Well - easier said than done.  Here's the story - June 25th I read a post from Shirlee reminding us there were six months until Christmas.  First, I chuckled.  Then I panicked.

I have TWO needlepoint Christmas stocking to finish before November 1st.  One is for my grandson who will be 18 months old around Christmas.  The second is for my grandson-to-be due in October.  Not to mention the grand daughter-to-be due in August.  So I guess my math is a bit off - that's THREE.

I have one started.  It's roughly 19 inches longs 12 inches wide.  Here's the front:

So you can tell how much I've gotten done, here's the back…..all the white "inside" the stocking is what I have left to do.  Did I mention it's 18 holes per inch?

What else can I say?

Keep yourself surrounded by stitches ~ Cheers