Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Smell My Feet HD

Here's another ornament I finished yesterday. It's Smell My Feet by La D Da from Just Cross Stitch. I love 40-count linen. The stitches are so dainty. My eyes have just started having trouble seeing close up (I'm near sighted and soon to be 44 years old), so I guess I'll be needing some cheaters soon to work on 40 count.

Mill Hill kits HD

I finished these Mill Hill bead kits a few weeks ago and am just now getting the pictures posted. I've never done any Mill Hill kits, which seem to be pretty popular, before, but working with perforated paper is much more fiddly than I thought it would be. Putting the backing on can be a pain too, especially cutting it out, so I may skip that if I do another one.

The first one is called Wintertime Snowlady, and the second is called Christmas Dove. Cheryl gave me the Snowlady kit; it was looking for a home. I bought the dove when we were at ABC Stitch Therapy in Houston (one of my favorite places to order from, incidentally, and now they're a few hours' drive away).

Oh, Sarah Beth asked what kind of yarn I used for the scarf. I believe it was Caron Simply Soft. I find Red Heart yarn very scratchy. I may need to try wool or another material someday. Any recommendations?

Monday, December 23, 2013

Frosty Windows scarf

I crocheted this scarf for Logan's kindergarten teacher for Christmas. I found some nice, soft yarn at Michaels. The pattern is by June Gilbank and can be found on her website.

It's Grumpy Cat!

Merry Christmas, Grumpy Kitty! This is a freebie by Brooke's Books. You can get the chart on her website. I finished him up as a little pillow ornament, which you can see on my website.

Matt and Logan are both sick for Christmas, so we're a little subdued here. I'm taking the opportunity to relax and catch up on a few finishes. More posts soon.

Sunday, November 24, 2013

HOE Halloween ornament exchange

I received this beautiful Halloween ornament from Carol. The piece is Spells by the Stitcherhood from the Just Cross Stitch 2012 Halloween Collectors Edition, stitched on 28-count Potato Annabelle. It's over one, and the finishing is just perfect. The back has a lovely matching yellow and black fabric. Of course, I love it!

I stitched Mr. Bones by SamSarah for Margaret. This one is from Just Cross Stitch too. I'm going to stitch one for myself, maybe even more than one. The positionable limbs are very cool.

I've decided to make my way through the ornaments I like in JCS. I'm definitely going to need a Halloween tree if I keep doing these exchanges.

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Summer Faerie HD

I finished Summer Faerie by Teresa Wentzler a few months ago. This is the fourth and final faerie in the series. I'm considering sending these four to Jill Rensel for framing. I'm sure she'd do a good job with them, and I could get them done early as a Christmas present to myself (Matt likes these easy decisions).

I'm working on Santa's Village by Country Cottage Needleworks at the moment. I changed the piece to be three across instead of four across, and now that the pieces in the series have been revealed, I'm not sure I like the arrangement. This will teach me not to work on a "mystery" set again. I never have good luck with them.

I also have various WIPs I should be working on, but a new TW is more appealing. Hm...

World of Warcraft

To answer Zeb, I'm playing on the Antonidas server and going the peaceful druid route -- no kills. I've done raiding, and I realized that I hated it. Go through a rote set of instructions with no deviation from the program and lots of stress -- what's fun in that? I'm just playing alone and talking to guild members and going the no-stress route. Much more fun.

Web Authoring

I use FrontPage as a WYSIWYG editor, so if anyone can recommend an easy and cheap HTML authoring tool, please let me know. FrontPage is acting up again.

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Thanksgiving exchange pieces

Zeb called me out, and yes, I haven't been keeping up with my blog. :) FrontPage has been giving me fits, so I haven't updated my website, which means I haven't updated my blog. And it's been since April! Eek! Also, I don't see as many cross stitching posts as I used to, so I'm not the only delinquent blogger. I get the feeling our stitching community isn't as active any more. Or is it just me?

So let me do some catch-up. Here is a piece I did for a Thanksgiving exchange back in October. It's called Thanksgiving Comes Again by the Prairie Schooler. That's 40-count linen, by the way.

I also stitched an Autumn Mini by Waxing Moon Designs as an angel stitcher. Honestly, I don't know why people sign up for an exchange if they're not going to stitch. That's the most fun part!

I also finished Teresa Wentzler's Summer Faerie. Pictures soon.

Geocaching and Other Hobbies

So what other hobbies have been keeping me busy? A friend got me into geocaching, which is kind of like a treasure hunt without the treasure. I'm a compulsive collector by nature, so I figured I'd get hooked. I did.

I've also been reading a lot, and I started playing World of Warcraft again. I joined a guild that levels without killing anything -- right up my alley! You have to be patient and enjoy tedium -- that's me! I've also been working on the yard. My husband has been replacing the fence, and I've been working on the flower beds (of which there are many). This was a lot more work than I thought -- a lot. This bed should look better come spring when the lantana and irises go crazy.

I also did my first beading project and bought a felting kit. We'll see how those turn out.

Sunday, April 07, 2013


I did go to the show today, and I heard some nice comments about my pieces. Apparently the criteria for the judging were just whatever pieces the judges liked. Cross stitch did not get much, from what I heard. While I would like to be a part of a stitching group, I don't think I can put myself through this kind of thing. I hate competitions because I have this nagging drive to succeed, even when there's no real need to. I wish the show was truly a show and not a competition. I just don't see the point. Ah well, this is just the way my brain works and it's the only one I have, so I'll have to live with it. :)

I did see some very cute beaded ornaments, so I may need to take up beading. I've been meaning to for a while.

My stitching is home and safe, so I can relax and work on Summer Faerie (which I also saw at the show!).

Saturday, April 06, 2013

Feeling funky

I've been in something of a funk this year. I mostly attribute it to settling into a new house and new city and the fact that everything is disorganized, especially my craft room. My environment has to be organized, at least to a certain extent, before my brain can fully engage. OCD? Maybe a little.

So we bought three shelves from Ikea for my craft room, and I bought some plastic bins to organize all my stuff. Of course, that didn't take care everything. We then bought some wood and put up some shelves in the closet of my craft room (they still need painting). At last, almost everything was off the floor! I still have some things to hang, but I need to figure out where they need to go. At least I have room to work.

We also bought a new comfy chair (insert Monty Python quip here) for the bedroom so I could stitch. At last! I could enjoy stitching again!

I started on the last Teresa Wentzler fairy to complete my collection. I've finished the top border and bit of the sides.

Then today happened. When we moved here, I joined the Austing EGA chapter. I was very happy to be part of a group, but work and my general exhaustion after work prevented me from going to the meetings.  Today is their stitching show, and I entered some of what I thought was my best work. I showed up to volunteer today, and no one was there. At all. Then I saw the list of merit ribbon winners. Nope, my name wasn't on the list. OK. I didn't want to be childish, but I was hurt. My work is about as technically accurate as I can get it. I know my technique wasn't the problem. The subject matter? I don't do samplers or folk art, which seems to be all the rage. Cliquish behavior? No idea. I finally figured that this group just isn't into the kinds of things I do. So what's the point of being a part of this group? Defeated, I went home and emailed that I wouldn't be working today.

So yeah, I feel like a little kid who didn't win at the science fair. I'm an adult, right? Why am I sitting here depressed because some people didn't like my cross stitch? Grow up, don't take it personally, be mature.

I think I'll just take my toys and go home now.

Wednesday, January 02, 2013

Looking back at 2012 and ahead to 2013

Yes, it's the obligatory post about yearly goals. I like setting goals because I feel like I've accomplished something when I meet them. When I don't meet them, I don't get too heartbroken; I just reassess and carry on.

I didn't stitch much in the past year, mainly because my love of reading reawakened. Even with checking out books from the library, I think it's still a more expensive hobby than cross stitching. Kindles are very dangerous. Speaking of which, my mom bought me a Kindle Fire HD so that my son could have my regular Kindle Fire. He loves playing games on it, and it keeps him focused (he's ADHD) -- much better than having him bored and getting in trouble because of it. Matt also bought me a Kindle Paperwhite for my birthday because my first Kindle died after a cat knocked a glass of water onto it. I like the bare-bones Kindle because you can read it outdoors and the battery lasts longer; sadly, this one doesn't have Whispernet, which allows you to buy books even when you don't have an Internet connection. We're also trying out the Kindle Freetime app so that Logan doesn't accidentally buy games (again) and doesn't mess up the settings (again). The built-in parental controls only do so much.

My only stitching goal for the year was to work on Matt's Magnificent Wizard, which I didn't do. Now that I have a sewing room again and it's almost organized, I hope to get back to it.

Finished in 2012:
  • Band Sampler RR
  • Joan Elliott RR
  • Almost Halloween
  • Enchanted Swans
  • Frightful
  • Sizzle
  • Halloween exchange (I need to post a pic of the one I did)
  • Thanksgiving exchange (ditto)
As for my life goal of losing weight and getting fit, I did pretty well with it and actually jogged seriously for the first time ever, plus did two 5Ks. However, I backslid a lot during and after the house move, so like everyone else, I'm renewing my comittment to getting in shape. The new city has good walking trails, so I'm looking forward to trying them out once it's not dark when I get off work.

I hope you had a good year, and let's get stitching! If you read my blog, I'd like to read your blog too. Please post a link to your blog in the comments, and I'll add it to my reading list if it's not already there. I read blogs through Google Reader, and I don't know of a way to post which ones I read. Thanks.