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Monday, November 29, 2010

The Monday Blues

      The big Thanksgiving Day feast is but a fond memory. Black Friday was spent quietly at home with the pups. A relaxing weekend in my stitching chair... a perfect holiday weekend. Monday morning arrived with rain drops and gray skies... the dreary days of a long Midwest winter have arrived.
     Angel Gard Thy Bed has been completed since my last blog post. 
Angels Gard thy Bed
Scholehouse for the Needle
Lakeside 36 ct Vintage Buttercream linen
AVAS silk
      Way back in May of this year I started Hannah Lancaster. This is how she looked when I set her aside.
 Here's some snaps of Hannah today.
 Hannah Lancaster Sampler
The Porcupine Collection
Silkweaver - 40 ct. Days Gone By
Belle Soie and Gloriana silks
The house took forever to stitch, but I'm very happy with the results. I converted the DMC to Belle Soie and Gloriana silks.

 Look who managed to get herself included in the snap. Emma was in a bit of a snit over the fact that there were NO snaps of her in the previous post. I've made peace with her by featuring her in the new header and promising to include several snaps of her in this post. She's my little Diva.
      I did spend a bit of time at the Bernina stitching the latest two blocks from the French General BOM. 

Just one more block to go and then I can decide how I want to put the blocks together. I opted out of the finishing kit offered at the quilt shop. I have enough French General fabric to make sashing stripes and borders.
      I managed to get a snap of Emma during one of her reflective moments. I'm sure she's thinking about nature and all the lovely smells and sights we've been seeing on our daily three mile trail hikes we've been taking every morning. Or just about every morning, as long as the good weather lasts. We missed a couple of mornings last week due to icing on the trail. 
      Emma and I are serious about our daily walks as we both want to keep those extra pounds off this winter. I also get the added benefit of two very pooped pups. I let them run off-leash through the campgrounds, so I'm sure they're running at least another mile or so. As they recover from all that exercise, I get some uninterrupted quilting/stitching time.
Can you believe she makes me walk in the rain??? 

Thanks for stopping by. Wishing you a week filled with stitching, quilting and everything that brings you happiness.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

A Blessing and a Curse

      My computer has been a blessing and a curse. I was concerned about the amount of time I would spend, per day, on my computer and was trying to cut back in order to spend more time stitching, quilting, reading and pursuing other interests. I was having a hard time cutting back. You know how it goes, you just want to quickly check your e-mails and the next thing you know a couple of hours have passed by because you were drawn to blogs and websites for the latest and greatest in the stitching and quilting community.
      Well... my computer (this is the blessing part) helped me cut back by deciding to call it quits a little over two weeks ago. I was responding to an e-mail when the computer froze. Thinking a reboot would solve the problem, I was confident I'd have things squared away in no time. No so... all I got was the dreaded hour glass and my computer refused to allow me to open anything. Off to computer hospital we went, for an extended stay. She finally returned home yesterday afternoon... still a bit weak, but with some TLC I'm sure we'll be fine.
      You don't realize how much your computer becomes a part of your normal daily routine (this is the curse part) until it disappears. I missed my daily communications with my stitching sisters and all those lovely blogs. When I realized that I wouldn't be able to download another Audible book to my iPod I was truly at a loss. 
      It was time to get  back to basics and spend all my much sought after 'extra time' and get cracking on those quilt blocks that were tossed in the basket the beginning of the summer. Here's a few snaps of the past few months of blocks for the Civil War Tribute quilt. The first six months of blocks were challenging, but doable. This BOM saved the really hard blocks for the last six months. I conquered partial seams, but the set in seams on a couple of the blocks gave me fits.
 The first block has a total of 46 half square triangle units per twelve inch block. I still have to make seven more blocks. It takes a  l..o..n..g... time to cut and piece those HST blocks.

 I still need to construct the large center block of the quilt and then I can join all the blocks together before starting the border. Did I mention that there is a saw tooth border? Lots more HSTs in my piecing future.
      I completed the stitching on Jenny Bean's Halloween Sampler.

  Jenny Bean's Halloween Sampler
Shakespeare's Peddlar
Lakeside Linen - 36 ct. Maple Sugar
Limited Edition GAST 
      I was in a bit of a muddle when I completed the Jenny Bean Sampler. I just couldn't settle on which WIP to continue working on, so when in doubt it's always a good idea to start something new. Right???
       When I was at Country Sampler a couple of my Guild sisters pointed out a new to me designer, Pineberry Lane, and sampler that appealed to us all.
 The Rising Harvest Sampler
Pineberry Lane
Picture This Plus 36 ct. Ale Linen
Needlepoint Inc Silk
     We were all attracted to the verse, an excerpt from an old sampler verse, 1827:
"The rising harvest never mocks our toil, 
We're sure of fruit if we manure the soil."
 This is the first sampler I've stitched with the word 'manure' in the title. It will make a perfect companion to the Country Life sampler. 
       A couple of years ago a friend from Texas, Joann, gifted me with a lovely sampler chart from Scholehouse for the Needle. I chose to start this sampler rather than continue stitching on a WIP.
 Angels Gard thy Bed
Scholehouse for the Needle
Lakeside 36 ct Vintage Buttercream linen
AVAS silk
 The verse is charming:
"hush my dear lie still and
slumber holy angels Gard
thy bed heavenly blessing
without number Gently
falling on thy head"
 It would be perfect for a birth sampler or for a child's room. I plan to hang it in my bedroom.... I'm a child at heart. Thanks Joann... I'm enjoying stitching your lovely gift.
      There were a few questions about the Frances Eden sampler in my last post. The sampler was designed by Handwork Samplers. I found it on the House of Stitches website, Frances Eden
      Emma wanted me to reassure Bertie that yes indeed, she is a dog! Corgis are notorious for sleeping on their backs. I think it's a way for them to cool down quickly. Pembroke Welsh Corgis are double coated and get hot fast.
      Thank you so much for taking the time to visit my blog and leave your much appreciated comments. It still astonishes me that others are interested in my stitching, quilting and corgis. 
      I want to send a very public thank you to Sylvia, Running with Needles and Scissors. I was the winner of her Blogaversary giveaway. Sylvia sent me a lovely package.

Emma and Owen really enjoyed the Nylabone treats that were included in the package. They devoured them immediately and I wasn't able to include them in the snap. The chocolates are delish. I can't wait to stitch on the French Gander linen. Thanks from all three of us Sylvia... you really made our day!
      I have a lot of blog reading to catch up on, so it's time to close for today.
Happy stitching everyone!