Friday, September 30, 2011

EEKS!! - Another Closet De-Stashed!! - September 30, 2011

We are still just having the best of best times!! We have pretty much stitched all day, except for short de-stashing time. Going to stitch tonight and some tomorrow. Then, come Sunday will be my tears as Debra must go back home!!

We opened "the" closet today!! Hundreds of kits, most untouched and unopened, come flying out at us. Now, I have to decide "keep" or "out" so we can begin our evenings stitchings.

We "think" tonight is the night for Karen to finally give in and pick up the needle!! I sincerely hope she does. Each kit is just more cute than the last for her. I keep telling her she needs to start stitching to help me get through them.

Got lots I want to keep, but many more that I love, but simply know I will never get to.
I had to take a break for a few hours yesterday to attend a luncheon honoring my dear friend, neighbor and caregiver, Eunice. She was selected as top teacher in Iowa that returned to work after age 55 for 2011. There were two Iowa Senators in attendance. I am sitting at head table in bottom left hand corner across from Eunice's daughter, Zennia, who came in from Chicago for this great honor of her mother. Eunice truly deserved to be given recognition for all she has done for every one.
They told of every year of her life and what she accomplished right down to 2007 when she realized she had neighbors who were experiencing very "tragedic and serious problems" right across the street from her and how she simply just ran and took over even before she truly knew us. She surely helped me in giving Max and I another four years together that we probably would never have had. And, I know I would not have been able to gain as much independence as I have without her continual presence in our lives. It was very nice to see her receive such an award and honor.

We are sadly starting Debra's last day and evening to be with me in Iowa. I am going to be quite upset when she has to go back to the airport. My dear friend, Karen, has been with us a great majority of these days as her husband is away in Arizona for a few weeks. Karen is not a cross stitcher, however, she has had as much fun with us as Debra and I have had. Karen will be the one driving us back to the airport which is about a hour away on Sunday morning. This will make it a bit easier on me, but I truly am going to hate to see this time come. However, I was very fortunate in that Debra was able to extend her stay these past five days!!

Debra and Karen became almost instant friends also. They worked very hard in trying to finish yet a bit more of my "de-stashing". It is almost impossible for me to get into the closets and totes and other areas to access the piles of stash. They went through and pulled many, many boxes out and brought them to me to go through while sitting in my chair and assisted me in sorting it all. I believe the last I was aware of that Karen had taken five large boxes of just charts down to the lower level of my home. I truly do not know how to go about finding new homes for all these things!! At least now, they are all out of sight and hopefully will go out of mind until I can decide on a way to do this process.

Very excited about getting back to stitching this evening as some very all time favorites were pulled out for me to see and keep at my reach today!!

Love and Hugs!!


Wednesday, September 28, 2011

PROGRESS - September 28, 2011

First, this is NOT starting out well!! I wanted to add more pictures and it will not let me and then I got this blue lettering with lines. Well, I know not to push my luck and will take it as it is!!

Debra Hall came last Thursday and was scheduled to leave this morning. We have had such a good time that she extended her airline ticket until Sunday morning. Going to be a real sad day on Sunday!!

We have had my local best friend, Karen, with us most of this week. The three of us have had such a great time!! Karen has become very important in my day to day independence and keeping it. Thus, she can remember and just knows things that I should and has kept us busy doing all we intended and wanted to do. She knows where things are and makes sure we get there!! She has just added to the fun we have been having even though she does not stitch - at least not yet!!

Yesterday, we happened by an old memory for me. I was once engaged to a man who needed to make an entry to a town's competition to decorate for their local festival. I designed and came up with his entry!! I had forgotten all about this ole boy fishing until we happened on it again!! The picture is below.
AND, much more importantly Debra and Karen are attempting to sort and organize my "de-stash"!! Below are pictures of the progress!! Now, just how to make these piles disappear to new homes!!

AND, I am off to have fun with Debra and Karen. OH, Karen did purchase her first "starter" stitching kit while we were touring the Amana Colonies on Monday.

Love and Hugs!!


Monday, September 19, 2011

And, Another Week Goes By - September 19, 2011

Once again, I had another thoroughly enjoyable week of stitching. Just did not have as much time as the week before. Still so yearning and aiming for time I am caught up and can stitch all day and all evening till I can not stand to do it any more!! Oh no, that can not happen or I truly will be one very bored woman!!

I was just plain all out tired this week. Also, I got invited to several different functions out this week. I did go and enjoyed my self immensely, however, it truly takes so much out of me to transfer and get my self settled and then re-settled. I think almost every evening this past week, I would collapse in my stitching nest and promptly go to asleep!!
Still have the "nasty" problem of lights surrounding my face each time I do this and it is a bit too much chance of extreme danger that I have to remedy ASAP.

AND, falling asleep can cause a multitude of other problems such as below on my Little House Needleworks "Fresh Fallen Snow". I evidently fell asleep with my darn marker in my hand. I woke with it smeared all over a favorite night gown. I kept praying "okay God, just not............."!!
My luck had run out and my beautiful project became instant dust rag!!
Oh, I was so mad!! Oh well, perhaps it will give me more incentive to try and stay awake while in my stitching nest!! I can only hope!! However, I have started making sure I set my marker down immediately after each use on the table beside my chair.
Many "old-timers" can remember my last encounter with my marker. I was in the hospital and out of my mind on morphine. Max's friends came in to visit me to find me putting my needle through my working copy and very boldly marking my fabric!! They were scared and did not know what to do as Max evidently had fallen asleep while I was stitching. I am sure Max fell asleep and I decided I had a clear chance at stitching as he usually would not let me have a needle and/or scissors when I am that out of it as I was. I was less than 100 stitches from finishing "She who dies with the most patterns"!! I did re-stitch that one and it is hanging in my Stitching Sanctuary and I will re-stitch "Fresh Fallen Snow".
I have learned to not "sweat" the little things!!
Below is a new start by Plum Street Samplers entitled "Yuletide".
I really like this and it will be a very cute ornament!

Below is the before rotation and after of Lizzie Kate's "Halloween Rules". It is coming along very slowly, but nicely. It will ultimately be a bell pull I think.Next is another Lizzie Kate called "6 Fat Men". It is going to be a darling snowman piece and every home needs some snowmen.

The next rotated this past week was by Bent Creek and it is called "The Haunted House". It is a three part series before it is completed. I love doll's houses and any kind of type building to stitch.

The following is by Cherry Wood and it is called "Good Witch". It has a couple of "google" eye buttons for finishing. I love the colors.

This is what I did this past week!!

Two More Days!! Two more days and I am going to go to the area airport, about one hour away, and meet Debra Hall's plane. I am so excited and so looking forward to our visit. Surely, I will have a whole lot to update next week!!

I want to thank every one for all their help in assisting me to find a chart for me to stitch my EGA Guild Name Tag. I ended up with several to choose from. And, yet another new start!!

Love and Hugs!!


Wednesday, September 14, 2011

DAH!! 30 Minute Rotations Does Not Make It!!

It appears right from the start of this I have made errors. This was to have been in context of post with other pictures, but it did not quite work out that way!!
Below is Blue Ribbon Designs MOONLIGHT MIDNIGHT. The top picture was the progress before it's three hour rotation. I made adequate progress.

This has been a strange week!! I was overwhelmed with invitations to join six different social groups. I have been told people are beginning to feel it is "okay" to approach me now that my dear Max has been gone six months. I choose one of the "four" different church circles with all vying for my picking their group while at church last Sunday!! My LNS owner also invited me to attend the local chapter of EGA Stitching Guild meeting. I went to EGA meeting last night and thoroughly enjoyed it!!

However, they have a rule that you must wear a name tag and you must stitch it!! You are given a length of time to finish a name tag, but from then on you must have it done and wear it to each function or you are assessed a fine!! Good Lord, I don't stitch that fast and it is going to take many days for me to find some sort of chart to follow for this!! Better be shaking down the piggy bank!! I also attended the church guild meeting this afternoon and enjoyed it much!!

I had an excellent week, and particularly weekend, of stitching again!!

Woo Hoo - Two weeks in a row now.

And, I know now, you absolutely can not just do 30 minutes per rotation. That only allows setting up chart, pulling thread out and threading the needle!! I have a very short attention span that goes along with my illness. Thus, I thought keep rotating of this ever growing pile would take care of this!! Another great moment, in my "I thinks" that were grossly wrong!! I easily got through the entire pile with this 30 minute idea, but hardly got any stitches done to even consider or be able to see. Thus, I finally have went to doing three hour rotation times and it seems to be working beautifully. Now, if I can just cure my constant need to start new projects and more to point to quit purchasing new products. I go in to my LNS with firm resolve to just pick up the threads I am needing, but never come out without dropping $100-$200!! This has got to stop!!

But, once again, I am so very, very much enjoying every single "x" and hope all the more that I can get the few things left to be done on my home finished and be able to devote each day and evening to just stitching!! I can not foresee ever getting bored with this, but I suppose it could be possible. However, if I truly get involved in all the social groups that I have become involved with since Max's passing it they should be a welcome diversion.

The picture below is yet another new start. I had ordered this kit from Herschners and had forgotten about it. It arrived, and I LOVE tea cups, and I had to instantly being to sort it all out and stitch on it. It is by Alma Lynne and is called CHRISTMAS COFFEE CUP TABLE TOPPER.

Not quite which Christmas this will be done for, but am sure I will keep it in rotation. Thinking of doing three-hour one and then stitch on this for remaining time till bed each evening. I LOVE it! Below is Little House Needleworks HALLEUJAH. I have to say, I am a bit disappointed in this "ornament" as I think it too big and it should have some brighter color. But, since I am completely anal about changing any thing it is what it is.

The top picture is my progress with rotation this week!!

Below is my Bent Creek THE HAUNTED HOUSE MANTLE. The fabric is a very coarse and stiff linen and the entire project is stitched with Perle cotton. This has taken me some extreme adjustment, but I am now okay with this.
The top picture shows progress of this week.

The next photos show Lizzie Kate WHEN WE DO. I am quite fond of this picture and it's companion pieces, one is pictured below these also.

I forgot to take a photo of this piece prior to stitching this week.

It truly helps to be able to compare before progress and after to see there is progress!!

Below is yet another new start!! I am not particularly fond of snow men, but you have to have snowmen and snow ladies in your holiday decorations!! I just was drawn to this piece and spent an entire evening stitching on it. It is by Sam Sarah Studio and is called SNOWFLAKE.

It has words "just another snow flake" on it. I kept staring and thinking on this all day and evening and I guess that was my draw to it. I suddenly discovered it is a pregnant snow lady and it is ultimately an ornament for some one expecting a new baby!! Granny Lou, my beloved 87-year old neighbor who lives directly next door and comes over to check on me every day, has a granddaughter expecting a baby in February so this piece has her name on it.

Below is the Lizzie Kate I KNOW GOD which is a companion piece for WHEN WE DO above. I very much like this piece also.
The top picture shows this week's progress!!

Well, this was this past week's progress and I am back to stitching every day and evening thus far this week!!

Any one know of any charts I can get for making my self a name tag for my EGA meetings? I simply am not that talented to just start some thing.

And, I am still on count down to Debra Hall's arrival next week, now just down to one week away after tomorrow!! I am so excited!!

Love and Hugs!!


Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Virtual Stitch In Results

I had my self a true virtual stitchathon!! I had a fabulous holiday weekend. I had started it with total dread as it was to be another "first" with out my beloved Max.

I stitched all evening Friday and most of Saturday day and evening with the exception of a quick trip to LNS to get more thread. I NEVER simply skip church, however, I just did not feel very well and decided to stay home. Eunice decided I was going to get out of my home though and sent her husband, Marion, to help me over to their home. They just live across the street, but access to their home is most difficult for me. But, I did have my needles a smoking even over there as I started some Halloween coasters on plastic canvas while there. Unfortunately, some thing is wrong and I got some hunting to do to find out what it is. Regardless, it is a complete "frog" job!! I was back in my "stitching nest" on Monday and Monday evening. Guess I got so comfy that I fell asleep in my "stitching nest" all but one of the evenings. Very comfy, however, I have about six lights all positioned right over me and they can get VERY hot. And, I am waking my self up to my head bobbing very close to these lights and this is just an accident waiting to happen!! Got to figure out a remedy for this ASAP!! Everyone keeps telling me the moment I feel like I am going to fall asleep that I should get up and go to my bed. I truly do not need to be told this as I am very well aware of this, however, I simply have no indication that I am going to fall asleep. With my large daily morphine dosage, I can easily fall asleep any where that I am sitting still.

Now, to my progress this weekend!! Fortunately, or perhaps unfortunately, I pretty much concentrated on new starts as I picked up the new JCS Christmas Ornament Magazine on Friday afternoon. I also picked up about a dozen pieces of fabric to do some of these new ornaments on.

I have decided to try setting a timer to rotate my extensive present rotations. I will just have to do some "trial and error" on deciding on how I plan to do rotations.

This is HALLOWEEN RULES by Lizzie Kate. I have been working on this for a few weeks now as I.L.C.S. SAL. Not getting too far, but am progressing.

Below is MERRY CHRISTMAS by Country Cottage Needleworks. It is a very simple ornament to do, I think.

This is COUNT YOUR BLESSINGS and is by La-D-Da.

Bloew is HO HO HO RIBBONS and is by Cherry Woods. I just noticed her designs and have purchased quite a few.

Below is FRESH FALLEN SNOW and is by Little House Needleworks.

I truly love this design.

This is BAD WITCH by Cherry Woods. I am also very fond of this Halloween design and she has a companion piece below this.

Below is GOOD WITCH by Cherry Woods.I have my JCS Ornament Magazine looking like it is years old as I have read and re-read these pages so many times. It must have been the third time looking through that I discovered the ornament below. I immediately LOVED it, however, shortly after beginning to stitch it the horrorific memories of "that" wedding sampler all began to come back. I am truly finding this very hard to do with the "lace" effect because of this.

But, being I want to find as many "memory" ornaments as I can find to make in memory of Max I will persevere and get it done. This is called ALWAYS IN MY HEART and it is by My Big Toe

And, that was my weekend. I can not wait till I have the final few things I need to do to have my home the way I want it done. After these few things are done, I can stitch, stitch, stitch and stitch every morning, noon and evening. This was a long standing wish of mine, BUT I wanted it to be with my husband sitting beside me and teasing me about each project.

I would much rather be working, tending to family and being with my husband, but that is just not part of my life unfortunately!! I just hope and pray that I never tire of my little "x" any time soon.

Love and Hugs!!


Friday, September 2, 2011

My Master Disorganized Organization - September 01, 2011

I have tried to promise my self that I want complete organization in my life . I am desperately still trying to figure out what my new "normal" is now without my beloved husband, Max. I have learned that the definition of grief is that it is the price you pay for loving some one. I just want to know how much more I have to pay if this is true!!

Oh well, it will be six months this Monday since I lost Max. It has gotten a bit better, but I still have to admit I have a LONG way to go yet.

TWENTY DAYS and counting!! Debra Hall is flying up to visit me on the 22nd. I am so very excited and happy!!

Now, for tomorrow's I.L.C.S. "Virtual Stitch In"!! I plan on extending it by beginning as soon as I finish this Blog update and not quitting till I go to bed on Sunday evening. Of course, if I am being real honest, I never got to bed the previous two evenings as my stitching nest is so comfortable that I have fallen, and stayed, asleep in my lift recliner!!
I truly have been stitching quite a bit the past few months and I have so been enjoying each, and every, "x" I make. A few more things left on my "ToDo" and "Deborah's De-Stash" lists and I will pretty much be able to stitch most of each day and evening as the weather will be turning again soon and I simply am not able to get out by my self. I have truly been wishing to see my self getting to this point of having nothing left to do and just being able to stitch day in and day out - as I have no husband, children, pets, responsibilities, etc. to have to do any thing but what I want to do.

Below is a picture of today's accomplishment!! I went to LNS for simply just TWO skeins of DMC and ended up with $174 worth. But, who could have not done the same thing as my copy of the brand new JUST CROSS STITCH Christmas Ornaments Magazine was also just waiting for my arrival there also!! I got the fabric for about a dozen of the ornaments and five new charts and their needed things to start them. I just had my new "rotation" set up as pictured below and now it has suddenly doubled!! Oh well, I have a BIG smile for every "x" tonight with my biggest problem being which one I want to begin tonight!! God is Good!!

Below is my start on NOEL EN ROUGE by Sue Hillis. I am doing this on a sparkling bright white fabric with garnet thread.

Below is GOBLINS ON PARADE by Blackberry Lane Designs. I am doing this on Weeks Dye Works Linen and I absolutely DETEST it. Sorry, I have dust rags that look better than most piece of Weeks Linen I feel, but that is just my personal opinion. Of course, I have always stitched "in hand" and perhaps this linen works out better hooped. My best guess is this will end up a dust rag as I am not enjoying it much at all!!

And, this is SPOOKY HALLOWEEN MANTLE by Bent Creek. I originally did not care for the fabric or perle cotton threads that came with this three part kit. However, I persistented in at least trying to do this one and have surprisingly found that I love this one more than any other in this "rotation" group (that is growing by leaps and bounds and about two dozen new pieces of fabric)!! I very much look forward to each time I pick this particular piece up and predict it to be a finish for this Halloween

I LOVE doll's houses and any type of "buildings" to stitch better than any thing else other than my beloved tea cups and tea pots. Below is a spook house called THE HAUNTED HOUSE also by Bent Creek. I very much like it, however, I encountered confusion in two of it's symbols. I took it back to my LNS and asked the owner, Diana, how she was interpreting these symbols. As always, Diana was most helpful and got me back on track again. I can not wait to get some real progress in to this house now!!

The project below is quite dear to me as Max picked it out and specifically requested that I stitch this for our Pastor's birthday. This Pastor spent his own birthday with Max all day and well in to the evening this year as it was the day Max decided to stop his dialysis and begin hospice. This was a special verse that the Pastor read daily to Max. Thus, this PSALM TWENTY-THREE BY My Big Toe. I am hoping to have it finished for the Pastor's birthday next year on March 01. This is a real BAP that is going to take some real discipline by me!! But, it does have real special meaning to me and some how I WILL get it done!!

This project is going to be a real P.I.T.A.!! However, I do love it and I will keep at it till I get it done. It is called QUILTED GARDEN by Blue Ribbon Designs. It has SIXTY-THREE little square quilts and almost every one is full of fractional stitches that I do not particularly care for!! But, it is going to be absolutely exquisite and fairly good in size. I think it will be worth every little nasty word I have to say to it as I stitch it!!

And, my next little project is called SANTA BISCORNU. It is going to be so cute. You put little yellow star buttons on the top of each tree and these threes make up some of the corners in the Biscornu. I am hoping to get a few of these made for Christmas gifts.

I know this one does not show too much, but it is called POCKETFUL OF PEPPERMINT and is by Blue Ribbon Designs. It calls for a great number of specialty stitches, but I very much enjoy trying to master each of these. I think this will be a very pretty finish for holiday decoration.

Below, is a very special project I have started. I have a passion for collecting older perfume bottles. I LOVE these and have several placed around my home. This project is called PERFUMES and is by a woman named Isangel. She was one of the nicest ladies I have met online as she could not help me enough to get this complete chart. There is a different perfume bottle for each month of the year. This is going to be a very unique and beautiful piece!!

I just began the project below. It is one from CANDY CORN CRAZY from Sue Hillis. Can not say I am too much liking the designs, but the candy corn shape is unique and different for my Halloween decorating. And, below is Number Nine of Twelve ornaments for a Bride's Tree by Brooke's Books. It is called HOSPITALITY. And, it is "tea" related so it is a very automatic favorite for me. In fact, I have the previous eight ornaments all kitted up staring up at me, but feel no urge to begin any of them!

This is becoming a real favorite for me and I absolutely love it. It is called WHEN WE DO and is by Lizzie Kate. There are some companion pieces that go with this one and I have another right below this. This is going to be a very exquisite piece!!

This is the companion piece for the above project. I have to figure out a way to finish them to be displayed together. This is called I KNOW GOD by Lizzie Kate. I very much am looking forward to this becoming a fin

The next project is one of the Little House Needleworks Ornaments and is called HALLEUJAH. I am a bit disappointed in the colors, but they are exactly what the chart suggests. I think the right finish will make it a real beauty though

This became a great favorite very quickly with me. It will be quite colorful and all in over-dyed threads. I like Halloween and it will be a real heirloom to me. Max and I used to decorate every inch of our home, inside and out, for each holiday season. It is now utterly impossible for me, but I still want some special favorites to decorate with each holiday that will be easy for me to do. This is called MOONIGHT MIDNIGHT and it is by Blue Ribbon Designs. I think this may get a bit of preference in rotation order

This is going to be a real cute Christmas piece. It just makes you smile. It is called simply SIX FAT MEN and is also by Lizzie Kate. I think it will end up being very colorfrul also. I am anxious to see more progress on this one!!This is an error. This should be HALLOWEEN RULES by Lizzie Kate. Guess I will have to do some checking in to what happened here and post my HALLOWEEN RULES progress in next post.

I have no idea, as of yet, as to how I plan to "rotate". And, to be perfectly honest, I KNOW I will be having a few more additional starts from the new things I picked up today. The new JCS Ornament Issue is a real good one and has so many things I want to get stitched. I need about ten more life times.

Bottom line, I am MOST enjoying my stitching and more importantly I am finding "normal" again. It is definitely a very slow, and quite painful, process, but I never give up as there is always hope!!

20 more days and counting till Debra arrives!!

Love and Hugs!!