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End of year report

This has been a rough year all around. No stitching or blogging mojo was just the start. On the plus side, I’ve had a sleep study and discovered why my CPAP machine wasn’t helping me. :) Now I have a new machine, with a new pressure, and I’m sleeping better. I’ve decided it’s a sign of good things to come in the New Year.

On the stitching front, I’ve received a sweet, sweet ornament from Wendy. She and I have had a private ornament exchange the past couple of years, and I was determined not to miss it this year. Here’s what she sent me–

Wendy ornament 2014 425

I always enjoy reading her blog posts about her garden and the birds that visit there. She made this one because she has robins visit her, and they make the sweetest song. I loved the ornament without the story. It’s that much more special now.

This is what I made her–

Star for Wendy 425

It’s a freebie I found on a blog somewhere. I’m not sure where. I’m usually better about noting sources. Wendy was organized and early with my ornament. I was unmotivated and late with mine. The good part about that is that after I finished my ornament, I was able to photograph both of them together.

robin and star together

I love that I was able to get this photo.

The one thing I managed to do last year was read, quite a bit more than I normally read. It’s nice to feel I accomplished something for myself during a rough patch. This year, I’m going to participate in Book Riot‘s Read Harder Challenge. There are 24 tasks, that run the gamut from reading a book according to an author’s age when published, to where the book takes place, to specific genres, to self-help (traditional to non-traditional, which is inspiring people in the Goodreads group to read cookbooks to help them and other non-traditional books to help themselves). It’s a very loose challenge, so if you don’t normally read 24 books in a year, a book can cover two or more categories to accomplish all the tasks. It’s entirely up to you. I’ll have the hardest time with the poetry task.  I’m excited for the New Year to begin so I can get started. Like cross-stitch, I seem to think I can finish the challenge in five minutes. I have a list of selections for each category (with some books listed in multiple categories). My goal is to read books I already own or to check out titles from the library. I don’t want to purchase books specifically to complete a task. Unless I simple can’t resist…

Happy New Year to all and happy stitching!

:)

Merry Christmas

I participated in an ornament exchange with Wendy this year.  She sent hers early, but I had to wait to open it. Like all things this autumn/winter, finishing and sending Wendy’s ornament took longer than it should have. Here’s what she sent me:

425 Fresh Fallen Snow from Wendy 12 13It’s the gorgeous Fresh Fallen Snow by Little House Needleworks, which was published in the JCS 2011 Ornament issue. It was quite easy to verify the particulars, because this was on my list of ornaments to stitch–

to stitch list

I’ve got a few ornaments rated 10 before I move on to the ones I’ve rated 9 (or lower), but I don’t have to wait for this one. I’m so lucky! Thank you, Wendy. I love it.

Here is the ornament I stitched for Wendy. It arrived before Christmas, and we opened our packages sort of together on Facebook. That was nice. :)

425 Tweet Gift 12 13

A “Tweet,” Merry Christmas and Healthy, Happy New Year to you and your loved ones.

Happy Stitching. :)

Exchange Day Came Early

Because we couldn’t wait (kiddies, much?), because all ornaments had been received, the exchange moderator moved the opening day to yesterday. I gasped and squealed when I saw my giftie. It was on my to-stitch list. I’d admired it on other blogs. And now I don’t have to stitch it, or think about how I want to stitch it someday, because I have it! I’m thrilled to bits. Thank you, Carmen. :)

exchange from Carmen

Joy of the Snowflake by Litlle by Little from the 2011 JCS Ornament issue. How perfect is that trim? It’s whimsical and gives the ornament movement and life. Carmen attached it with matching beads.  Just gorgeous. Did I mention I love it? Because I do. :D

Here is what I stitched for Lyn, and previewed the other day–

Love was Born 12.11

She says she likes it, and I’m relieved. Exchanges always tie me in knots, which is why I don’t participate in them often. And then they’re over, and I’m so happy I did it.

Lizzie Kate, JCS Ornament issue from the 90’s, 32-ct shell linen, recommended fibers, flat finish. And stuff. I’ll likely edit it with proper info later, but you get the gist.

Happy Stitching! :)

Ornament exchange preview

I stitched an ornament for an exchange on a Yahoo group I belong to. The opening date is Dec. 20. I can’t show what I stitched until then, but I can have fun and show a preview here for myself.

This is sort of a picture of the back. The starry pattern is the fabric I used for the ornie back, and I did put our initials and the year on the back with blanket stitch. Really, though, I used a neon framing tool that eliminated the ornament’s image and changed the trim’s color and moved the initials to the center of the ornament. And now I realize how complicated that was, but I was goofing around and didn’t know what I was going to do until I did it. It was just a bit of fun.

Happy Stitching! :)

Thank you, Wendy!

I participated in an exchange on a Yahoo group I belong to, and Wendy was my partner. We had a bit of a scare, thinking the ornament she stitched me had gotten lost in transit, but patience won out. *PHEW!* Here is the ornament Wendy stitched for me:

I scanned the perfect fabric Wendy used for the back of the ornament, which I used as background for the picture. It’s so adorable. When the husband saw it, he exclaimed, “It’s Michigan!” It’s on our tree now, front and center so I can see it when I watch TV and/or stitch.

Thank you, Wendy. It’s terrific.

This is what I stitched for her:

Noel Stocking front and back 12.10

Vitals:
Souvenir of Paris Stocking. Designed by Barb Adams of Blackbird Designs, as appeared in Joyeux Noel book.
Stitched on 30-ct St Valentine’s Blend linen, as was the model.
Fibers as recommended except I used CC Black Coffee instead of WDW Caper.
Modifications: I used motifs from the design to stitch the back of the stocking, and used an alphabet from the Joyeux Noel sampler (Reproduction adapted by Barb Adams and Alissa Christianson) that appeared in the same book

It was a lot of fun to stitch. I enjoyed every minute of it.

It was a great exchange. I also loved the card Wendy handcrafted for me. Thank you, Wendy, so much. :)

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! ;)