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Pumpkins for Cathey

Today is Cathey’s (Pumpkin Patch & Co) fourth blogoversary, and many of us in the blogosphere are celebrating Cathey with pumpkins, thanks to Daffycat’s coordination. Surf over to this page of Sharon’s blog to see more pumpkins, and check the comment section for links to more Pumpkin Day blogs.

pumpkins

Pumpkin Bunny by CondemnedWire @ Deviant Art

Pumpkin Bunny by CondemnedWire @ Deviant Art

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pumpkin smiley       pumpkin pom pom

 lego pumpkin

Mario pumpkin shelf made by the boy many, many moons ago

Mario pumpkin shelf made by the boy many, many moons ago

I was inspired to stitch a few pumpkins in Cathey’s honor. I didn’t factor in the husband’s homecoming into my timing, so nothing is finished-finished. Plus, I bit off more than I could chew. As usual.

Halloween Pumpkin Ornament by Jeannette Douglas Designs

Halloween Pumpkin Ornament by Jeannette Douglas Designs

Pumpkin Flower Sampler by Bent Creek

Pumpkin Flower Sampler by Bent Creek

Pumpkins by Prairie Schooler

Pumpkins by Prairie Schooler

Lost Spirits by Birds of a Feather wip

Lost Spirits by Birds of a Feather wip

Jacks are WIld, completed 11.11

Jacks are WIld, completed 11.11

Now, lest you think I don’t finish anything, and to extend the celebrations, here are some oldies…

October Tuck by Pine Mountain

October Tuck by Pine Mountain

Pumpkin House by Kreinik?

Pumpkin House by Kreinik?

And last, but by no means least–

Pumpkin Sampler

Pumpkin Sampler

PHOTO BOMB!!

All the best, Cathey. We love you, and are praying and pulling for you.

With much love,

Happy Stitching! :)

Full of Hope

So WordPress changed the page for writing posts. The old page was intuitive and helpful. This page, the opposite. I only see things that appear to help those that know HTML, in spite of clicking the Visual tab. I am not one of those HTML-type people. I’m pretty pissed and discouraged. WordPress doesn’t want casual bloggers? Tell me. <insert irrational, frustrated name-calling here> It doesn’t help that I discovered this on a day when other programs are successful in their  attempts to make me crazy. Oh, whaddyaknow? I saved the draft, and everything changed back to “my” normal. So that’s a good thing.

Anyway, Full of Hope is finally finished.

I used the ribbon from the kit and attached it in a simple serpentine fashion. I bought additional pink pearly pins to attach the ribbon with the serpentine pattern. I love it.

Here she is, ready to be mailed to my cousin. She was diagnosed with breast cancer just before Christmas. I stitched this in my mother’s honor, I finished it in hers. With the pinkeep, I sent all my hope for a smooth recovery. I noticed in the picture that one of the pins is sneaking out. I hope she slips that baby back in.

I hope this finds you healthy and that you enjoyed your Valentine’s Day.

Happy Stitching! :)

Jacks are Wild

The men in my life known as the husband and the boy are both named Jack. This meant stitching Waxing Moons Designs’ Jacks are Wild was inevitable. I began this project with big, speedy plans. I would finish stitching before Halloween. Stop laughing! OK, laugh. I know you share my delusions. I’ll enjoy laughing at you when it’s your turn.

Jacks are Wild 11.11

I had fun with this project. I used DMC Glow-in-the-Dark for the lightning bolts, DMC Rayon (I think they call it Satin now) for the sunglasses and DMC Memory Thread for the spirals. I figured if the Jacks were wild, the stitching should be, too. :D

Vitals:
Jacks are Wild by Waxing Moon Designs
Stitched 2 over 2 on 32-ct Silkweaver Superstition Reflections
Stitched with the following substitutions: instead of GAST Black Crow, I used Raven, and DMC Satin for the sunglasses; instead of GASS Butternut Squash, I used DMC memory thread for the spirals; and instead of GASS Picket Fence, I used DMC glow-in-the-dark.

I took of this picture of the project in the dark to test the glow-in-the-dark threads. They glow, with varying results. I don’t know if you can tell, but if you look at the center Jack’s teeth, some stitches are brighter than others. The brighter stitches are glowing. I used a photo editor to brighten the photo, so it doesn’t appear to have been shot in the dark, but it was. The lightning bolt on the bottom right doesn’t stand out in regular light, because that part of the fabric is white, too. It is detectable in the dark, though, just like in this photo.

Silly fun.

My birthday was yesterday. In addition to stitchy goodness, I also received a lovely drawing from the husband. I don’t know which is more moving: the sentiment or the drawing.

 

Happy Stitching! :)

Justice in our Hearts

I stitched Giulia Manfredini’s freebie Justice in our Hearts for the tenth anniversary of the 9-11 attacks. According to her, the translation of this Psalm comes from the book, Lighthouse Psalms, (Honor Books, Tulsa, OK), from the Holy Bible New Century Version.

Justice in Our Hearts 09.11

I made a few modifications. I used all Caron Waterlilies, but used pine forest for the green (my choice) and cherry for the red (to avoid a second trip to the LNS). I stitched the white stripes on the flag with honeysuckle rather than leaving them unstitched. I didn’t use the silver metallic, but stitched the stars with honeysuckle and the candle flames with Tahiti. The biggest challenge/modification was crafting my own heart. The pre-fabricated heart Ms. Manfredini used is no longer available. So I faked it. I’m very happy with the way it turned out.

Isaac Clarke

It’s been a long time since the boy has asked me to share a picture on my blog. How could I possibly resist?

Meet Isaac Clarke:

From the Dead Space Wiki: Isaac Clarke is a systems engineer working for the Concordance Extraction Corporation and the main protagonist in the {Dead Space} games . Oh, how the boy wants this game!

He whipped this off so quickly, I can’t tell you. It’s a God-given talent that he doesn’t get from his mother, at lease not directly.

Memorial Day

Since it’s Memorial Day, I guess it’s time to share a recent patriotic finish.

Glory Fob 04.10
Glory Fob by Shepherd’s Bush.

I didn’t finish it as a fob, just a pincushion. I didn’t want ric-rac for a scissor loop. *shrug* You’ll notice the floss on the back side’s flag ran. I don’t remember how it happened, but I do remember trying to use a Q-Tip and hydrogen peroxide to clean up the mess. Yeah. I don’t recommend that. It made it worse. I laughed (what else could I do at that point?) and smirked to myself, “So much for ‘These colors don’t run!’ ” I’m a wise-ass, it just came to me. I didn’t even have to try. :D

Also, since it’s Memorial Day, I’m going to honor my kitten, Hero. We put him down this week, as he had the rare, incurable disease known as FIP, or feline infectious peritonitis. In households with one or two cats, the odds are one in 5,000 that a cat will contract the disease. As my brother reminded me, I have terrible luck with cats. Hero was technically my son’s cat, so we plan to replace him this summer. For now, I can’t remove his bed from my desk, where he insisted on sitting when I worked on the computer.  He may have been the boy’s cat, but I was his mama.  He was a very sweet fella.  He couldn’t seem to catch a break.  It ain’t right, but nobody ever said life is fair.

My sweet Hero, helping me stitch, very sick

Happy Memorial Day.  I hope you get to stitch this weekend.

The boy was thinking of me

Want to know how I know?  It was written on the card that came with these yesterday:

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He saved to send them to me, and picked a date at random, b/c he wanted it to be “just because.”  He gave up a new video game to send these to me.

How old is this darling?  Twelve.

I am still verklempt. :)

Charlotte

May I present the completed Charlotte, the husband’s Christmas gift:
Charlotte 12.08

She was very well received.  Her name may be changed to Terri.  I don’t know.  It’s a mystery.

Vitals:
Charlotte by John Clayton from his Elegance Series.
Stitched 2 over 2 on 32-ct Silkweaver Cameo linen using DMC
Changes: I changed her eye color from brown to blue with DMC 930, 931 and 932

Angel on high

My mother always made Norman Rockwell Christmases.  Mad Skilz, I’m telling you.

For my tree, I’ve had a few toppers over the years.  Mostly stars, as I recall, because I love stars.  I never had anything that I felt attached to, that simply must top my tree until a few years ago.  My mother had two angel dolls in her china cabinet that I admired.  Once, she told me if I was good, she’d make me one.  She forgot about the promise (or I wasn’t good? *gasp*).   When I asked her about it again, she told me she would definitely make me one.  She didn’t.

She sent me her angels.  She was decluttering her home on a massive scale, and I don’t think she was well enough to bother making a new angel.  My forever tree topper is now one of these angels.   I look forward to stuffing a tree branch up her dress every year.  I’m reminded of the best of my mother when I see that angel.

This year, the boy had one item on his Wish List.  Well, three, but they’re all related to the main item: a Sony PSP.  I wrapped a couple of presents for him to shake.  One is tube-shaped.  It’s driving him bonkers.  He can’t imagine what it might be.  I told him I got him a PSP, took it out of the box, and put it in the tube.  He doesn’t believe me, but I know he wants it to be true.  In our home, we open one present on Christmas Eve.  I know what he’ll be opening tonight!

Last night, I told him my best Christmas Eve present story.  I was an adult, visiting my mother.  There was a small, oddly shaped present under the tree for me.  I was sooo curious.  Was it the small size?  The odd shape?  I don’t know.  I could not imagine what it might be.   When it was time to open our presents, that was the one I chose.  It was a pair of embroidery scissors!  It was the bestest ever!  I never, ever came close to guessing.

Tonight, we’ll learn if the tube has a PSP, embroidery scissors, or something else.  It’s going to be so fun.  And my mother will be there.

angel-close-425

I wish all of you a Merry Christmas.

angel-250

Ornament exchange

I participated in an ornament exchange, and Milly picked my name.  I squealed with delight when I finally got to open my ornament.  I love Santa, and I love Carriage House Samplings, and I love Milly’s beautiful stitching.  How lucky am I??

Santa Toy Sign from Milly 12.08

I stitched an ornament for Nancy. One thing she said was that she likes Brightneedle designs. So do I!, so this was an easy pick for me to stitch.

To The a Very Merry for Nancy 12.08

I’ve been busy working on a gift for the husband, which he requested. I haven’t been doing anything else. “Don’t worry about it,” the husband says. “I don’t care when I receive it,” he says. Is he crazy? How long has he known me? Don’t worry about it. Yeah, right. I should have stitched him this, I think it would have been quicker, but I know he’d rather have what I decided upon.  As a hint, I will tell you it’s from this series, which I know the husband loves.   While searching for a page with the series, my status as a slow stitcher was confirmed.  This stitcher stitched six from the series and each of them took less than two weeks to stitch.  I’ve been working on mine faithfully for three weeks.  Well, four, but I lost a week of stitching time when I visited my guy, so I’m only counting three weeks.  I’m hoping to finish the piece this weekend, so I can take it in to get it framed on Monday, and hopefully, it will be ready before he goes back to California.  That’s my hope, my plan.  If not, well, I did my best.  Did I tell you he asked me to do this for him on Nov. 11?  I had nothing to go on.  I was in a panic.  I had planned to stitch him Missing You at a leisurely pace, not as a Christmas gift.  I couldn’t give that to him for Christmas, though.  It’s not really his style, and if he wants me to stitch him something, it’s got to be something he would like.  He asked me to stitch him something with a University of Washington logo (his alma mater).  I laughed.  How am I going to get a pattern like that in a timely fashion?  I could go on and on about the stress and anxiety that has visited me in the last month, but I’ve got stitching to do! ;)

My presents

Lookie what I got! The boy made these for me.  The step-daughter sent me a beautiful bouquet of carnations in a cupcake vase (TOO cute!), but I was too lazy absent-minded to take a picture.

Wolf 11.08     Mario Pumpkin 11.08

Mario Pumpkin and wolf 11.08

Wolf on Mario Pumpkin shelf

Happy Birthday to me!

Today is my birthday!  The boy and I  took a very early flight to San Diego today.  It was a day of firsts for traveling today.   We had a theme-park experience at the Detroit airport.  I usually fly Northwest, but today we took Delta.  The walk to the Delta concourse was very entertaining.   Coming down the escalator, we saw a huge blue circle on the floor.  Then we could hear electronic music.  It was evocative of space and underwater exploration.  The walls resembled water, but there were bright colors that changed in time with the music.  It was like getting out of the heat in a long theme park ride line and entering the building to begin the attraction experience.  Who knew an airport could be so exciting?  We took a very small plane to Cincinatti, where we walked down stairs to get off the plane instead of using a jetway.  Very retro.  The boy was impressed.  For the flight to San Diego, we were assigned the last row, which turned out to be a bonus.  The flight wasn’t completely full, and the boy and I each had three seats to ourselves.  BONUS!  We squandered the room by napping.  “Mom, it was a day of firsts!”  Indeed.  Everything that could have gone wrong, didn’t go wrong.  Happy Birthday to me. :o)  I suppose the worst part  is that the husband had to go to work, but meh.  We’re together.

lord-vader425

This is my birthday card from the boy.  I was going to upload a photo of my gift, but I can’t find the husband’s USB cord.  *sigh*  I purposely didn’t bring any of my extra USB cords, b/c my sweetheart had one at his apartment.  grr.  Maybe he’ll find it, and I can upload pics tomorrow.  Or I’ll get him his own USB cord.   

butterfly-fairy-425

This is my birthday present to me, bought on clearance from ABC Stitch Therapy.  I’ve admired her for a long time, but she was too rich for my blood.  Now she’s mine.  I have plans for her, which knowing my track record, should only take a few years to finish.

Now, everyone celebrate!

Aack!

The husband and I are temporarily a long-distance couple.  The boy and I went to visit him last weekend, and I left something at his apartment.  It was my…my…my CAMERA!  *sob*  I’m not really a shutterbug, not a photographer by any stretch (perhaps you noticed?  how kind of you not to say anything).  That doesn’t mean I don’t miss the camera.  I have no stitching to share today, but…but…I WILL!  We won’t see the husband until Thanksgiving weekend.  *whine*

He said he’d mail it on Monday, but of course he didn’t.  I knew he wouldn’t, and yesterday I begged him to mail it today.  He just called to tell me he tried, but the private mail center he went to didn’t open until 9am, and he was there earlier than that.  Maybe tomorrow.  He’s a gem.  I mean, really.  He could tell me to wait three weeks, what’s the big deal, and all that, but he will go out of his way for me. 

And now, it’s picture time!  I’ll share a  picture of an old cross-stitch finish, a cherished picture of the boy as an infant, since we know I have nothing new.

 

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Did you vote?

I did.  I was voter #446 for my precinct.  I always get excited by voting, including when I’ve known I was voting for a sure loser.  So, what’s a girl to do when she’s got all that nervous energy?  Celebrate by going to her LNS, of course!  I got some floss I needed and some stuff I don’t exactly need, but couldn’t bear to leave behind.  Good times.

I want to share a Tiki Fox comic with you today.  This was entirely the boy’s idea, and he asked his Social Studies teacher if he could make the comic for school.  She was glad for his idea, because she wanted to do something for Election Day, but didn’t have ideas. She was very excited to see what he turned in–he said she hopped up and down.  I loved it, too.  I meant to scan/copy it to post today, but I forgot, so I made him re-do it for my blog today.  “FINE!  But I’m making bigger panels, since I don’t have to leave room for the voting!”  Ooookay, dear one.

vote-425

OMG, LOVE!

Every once in a while, you see something that completely grabs you.  These scissors qualify for me.  When I saw them, I was filled with wishing for them.  So much so, I actually contemplated making an unplanned visit to see my brother this weekend so I could visit the Silver Needle booth at Celebration of Needlework show in Louisville.  That’s just nutty, not to mention expensive.  I can daydream, though.   I’m not one for collecting scissors.  I have more than one pair, sure, but I don’t remember ever having been overwhelmed with scissor-love at first sight.  Until today. 

In other stitchy news, I picked up a couple of framed pieces today.  *clap, clap*

Dandelion Clock framed

Dandelion Clock by Margaret Sherry framed with our dwarf hamsters

Betsy framed 10.08

Betsy by Sheepish Designs.  I LOVE this frame.

I hope you have a good stitching day, too.

An improvement

Last weekend, we braved the rain to drive to Midland, MI, where we purchased a trikke for our son.   The dealer assembled it for us, and since it was going to take awhile, he suggested we go to the mall for an hour or so.  We left the boy there to practice and took off.  We’re not mall wanderers, so I suggested an adventure.  There is a cross-stitch store listed on the Hoffman site not too far from here!  Let’s go see if it’s still there.  The husband didn’t mind, and off we went.  It was there. :)

The Stitching Well in Bay City, MI (No website).

It was a very big store–a converted house, I believe.  It had some yarn, some needlepoint, a framing section, a room for Christmas, a room for samplers, a room for animals, Mirabilia in a hallway (which led to a necessary bathroom), and fiber, fiber, fiber!!  When the husband asked if I’d be OK if he left me there, I told him I’d manage.  Truth is, I had to cut short my leisurely investigation.  I enjoyed myself tremendously. 

Remember my picture of the completed Dandelion Clock?  And how I used dark gray Wisper thread b/c I didn’t want to go to my LNS to acquire a new color of Wisper b/c I’d spend too much money?  Well, lucky me, I got to spend too much money at a brand-new LNS and get a new color of Wisper!!  Here’s a shot of the stash I got, including a new skein of Wisper.

This week I frogged the gray Wisper and replaced it with the yummy, new stuff.  I do believe it was worth the too much spending. ;)

An improvement, yes?  Now I need to decide if I’m going to get it framed, or if I’ll incorporate some of our pet hamsters into the finished product.  I finished this just days before our beloved Ridley, father to our babies, died (9-13-08).  He was also the inspiration for the tail-stubbing of this design.

Vintage

My MIL passed away 07-1-08.  We had to double-back to Seattle for her funeral.  Very, very sad.  She was a wonderful woman.  She was nearly 86.  She had been diagnosed with 3rd stage lung cancer ten weeks before her death.  She was determined to be at her granddaughter’s wedding, and determined to die at home.  She accomplished both of these goals, dying just a few minutes before an ambulance arrived to take her to hospital.  We were on an airplane trying to say our final goodbyes, alas.  I’m glad for my son, having his last memory of his grandmother be a good one.  I’m sad for my husband, not getting to her in time. *sigh*

One thing I learned was that she stitched tea towels as a wedding shower gift for each of her grandchildren.  My step-daughters and son are among her remaining unmarried grandchildren.  We received these to pass on to the kids:

These were stitched for my eldest step-daughter.

These are for my other step-daughter.

And these are for my son.

I have no idea when she stitched these.  I’m not sure if you can tell from these images, but there is foxing on the towels she stitched for my step-daughters.  They must have been stitched a long time ago.  My step-daughters are fifteen and sixteen years older than my son.  I think it shows in the condition of the towels.  They must have been stitched when the kids were very young.

I gave her the second piece I ever cross-stitched.  I got it back last week.
birds for Leona 8-91

It’s going to look good in my kitchen, I think.  I may need to have it re-matted, like I did with the picture I stitched for my mother.  We’ll see. 

I wasn’t in much of a mood for stitching while we were gone, and I’m finding it difficult to get back in the swing of things.  I’ve stitched a tiny bit, mostly out of habit.  It will come back when it comes back.

My contest, my rules

I decided to choose 2 winners instead of just one.  The winners are posters number 52 and 37.

Poster 37 is Karen of Karen’s Place in Web Space.
Poster 52 is Carme of Un Parell de Coses. 

Congratulations, ladies!  I will contact you ASAP.

I want to thank everyone who entered for playing and for all your kind comments and good wishes.  I wish the best of luck to all who are battling breast cancer and to all survivors.  I thank you all from the bottom of my heart for making this anniversary a good day.

Stitch Pink contest

My favorite LNS, The Rocking Horse, sells some exclusive designs.  One of their newest is a breast cancer awareness design.  The kit includes 32-ct linen, floss, beads, the bird button from JABC and the frame.  They haven’t put it on their site yet, so I’ll share the picture with you:

 

I’m sponsoring a contest at the Stitch Pink blog in my mother’s memory.  It’s a very short contest, and for that I apologize.  My mother passed away 6-11-06.  I would have preferred to start it on the 11th, but we’re leaving town on the 13th.  I didn’t want the winner to wait over long for her prize, so I opted for a shorter contest.  If you’d like to enter the contest, surf over to Stitch Pink and leave a comment on this post.