Saturday, December 29, 2007

Engelbreit Progress

We are coming to the end of a very pleasant week. My husband has been at home this week, and it is very nice to have all of us at home at once for several days. We have had a big breakfast every morning. We have had waffles twice, french toast, breakfast burritos, and homemade biscuits with sausage and gravy. Not exactly a low-cal menu. It is a very good thing that this doesn't happen too often. The kids are happy with their new things, especially new Wii and Nintendo DS games, and my husband is happy and fixing things around the house that need to be fixed. And I am happy to spend time with them...and, of course, to stitch.

I picked up my Engelbreit piece yesterday and made some progress. I have stitched part of the sign which will say "To a friend's house, the road is never long" when it is completed. I find this to be such a fun and easy stitch...quite a break from my HAEDs. The bright colors are very different from my usual stitching, and it is fun to do something different. I can even sort of watch TV and stitch this one. Tonight I stitched on it while we were watching a couple episodes from season one of Babylon 5, which was one of husband's Christmas gifts.

I have also been thinking about what I want to start in 2008, and even what I would like to finish in 2008. There are a couple of SALs that I would like to join.

I am trying to choose a sampler to stitch in the Sampler SAL on the HAED Forum. I would really like to do Sampler Saisons by Anagram Diffusion. I just love that design, but the more I think about it, the size of it (549 x 557) is just too intimidating. I am also tempted to start the Historic Countries Sampler being released in sections in The Gift of Stitching online magazine. And finally, I would love to start Mouline Rouge by Long Dog. I am going to have to make a decision soon so I can get the fabric and fibers before the 3rd weekend in January.

Thursday, December 27, 2007

December Thoughts

I have not posted in a while. It has been just too crazy busy with the Christmas season. I think next year, I am just going to put the blog on holiday during December. But finally things are now getting back to normal. The decorating, the baking, the crafting, the shopping, the wrapping, the cards, the packaging and mailing, the caroling, the Christmas performances and parties to attend...all that has come to pass. I love the holiday season, but I also love when it is over. I still need to take down the decorations, and I traditionally do that on December 30th.

I have not had a whole lot of time to stitch, but I did participate in the HAED monthly SAL challenge. I managed to stitch on Fairy Village in each of the 12 monthly SALs in 2007. Here is a picture of this month's progress. I went ahead and signed up for the 2008 SAL challenge on the HAED forum with this same project. Also I finished my squares for the Fair and Square Exchange and I will be mailing them out to Ruth tomorrow.

And today I managed to drive over to my LNS, which was having a store-wide sale, and make a few purchases. I now own these charts: Redbird Sampler by Bent Creek, Fuchsia Chick Chat by Valerie Pfeiffer, and Colonial Homes by Little House Needleworks.

I also purchased some 32 count Lakeside Linen in Nutmeg and some threads for the Red Bird Sampler. The threads are WDW Bark, Lancaster Red, and Juniper; GAST Harvest Basket; and CC Roasted Chestnut (this last one because my LNS was out of WDW Chestnut and this looked like a good substitute). This store was missing two different colors of WDW that I still need for the Red Bird Sampler, so I will probably run over to the other LNS near me tomorrow to see if they have it. That particular store is more needlepoint oriented, so they don't have many cross stitch patterns, but they have a huge array of fibers.

Happy stitching everyone, and have a good Friday!

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Busy December

I have been so busy with Christmas approaching and the season's preparations that I haven't had as much time to stitch as I would like. So I don't have much to show here, but I did get this nature alphabet picture back from the framers. I stitched this last summer for my son's bedroom which is done in the theme of the Great Outdoors. He is very happy with it.

I also did manage to stitch another ornament, but the time to get it sewed together seems to vanish each day before I can head over to the sewing machine. Also, I am having trouble finding some matching ribbon for a hanger...the 3 stores I went to had bright red and bright green, but not the deeper red or evergreen that I need. I have just about decided to make my own twisted cord hanger. Anyway, this one is from a Prairie Schooler booklet called Holiday Homestead. I am hoping that after tonight, which is nearly the last of my children's Christmas performances (save one at church for the candlelight service), I will have more time to stitch.

Thank you to everyone who has visited here and left your kind comments. I treasure each and every one of them. My hope for everyone is that you find some peace and calm in the midst of this hectic season.

Saturday, December 1, 2007

Petite Maisons - July

I barely made my personal goal of finishing thru the month of July on Petite Maisons de Campagne in November. I put in the last stitch about 10:00 last night. I find that it is not as enjoyable to stitch something out-of-season. I want to be stitching winter samplers and ornaments with snowmen and snow-covered pine trees, not beach scenes with lawn chairs and sailboats. Ah well, it is done. Note to self: do not let yourself get behind on a calendar SAL.

But now I can get on with some other stitching. I was looking through my collection of Just Cross Stitch Special Ornament magazines and picked a couple that I want to make. Both have a formidable specialty thread list for such a tiny project. One, Decorating the House by Brightneedle, uses Old Willow Stitchery threads and Weeks Dye Works while the other, Starry, Starry Night by JBW, uses Gentle Arts Sampler Threads. I have most of the GAST, but I don't have Old Willow or WDW. I will probably try to substitute some DMC and GAST...I just don't want to buy 10 skeins of specialty hand-dyed to make one ornament. Especially as the stitched area is tiny, no more than 10 stitches of a color...not enough to take advantage of the shading created by the hand-dyed threads.

I am also going to start stitching for my Fair and Square exchange. This is my very first exchange! I got the fabric yesterday.... I studied my partner's likes and dislikes... I have picked out a pattern... I am ready to start.

Well, I hear my family beginning to stir, so now I am off to make breakfast. Merry stitching everyone and may your December be wonderful!