Thursday, December 31, 2015

So Long 2015 ~~ Hello 2016

A glimpse of the end of 2015

Dottie Dog and Skye (the Grand-dogger) celebrate Christmas
Notice Dottie's smile -- that's because she got her favorite treat -- Marshmallows!

Stitched these earlier in the year and finally finished them in time for gift giving.

Crocheted 8 little red hats for the American Heart Association's Little Hats, Big Hearts project.

Dottie Dog found a small stream of sunlight for a nap.
(I wish I could sleep like my dog, lol)


Monday, December 21, 2015

Does your tree have a pickle?

Does your tree have a pickle?

Or a fancy spider?

We bought a fresh tree for the first time in about 15 years.

Some of my favorite ornaments are older than me.

Hubby snapped a pic before I was even done decorating.

Even though there is much to still get done,
take time to enjoy the season!

Thursday, December 17, 2015

Not Even Gonna to Try to Catch Up

I thought I'd be caught up...


Not going to happen

So I'm not even gonna try to catch up, lol

Amongst the chaos of that thing called life,
I did manage to get a few things made these past few months.

 Completed several crochet blankets 
(yes, I was that woman crocheting blankets in August!)

This one was for my mom's 75th birthday in early November

One of several scarves I crocheted for charity.  
I also crocheted newborn hats for a local hospital. 

I even crocheted mittens!

Took a beading class
learned how to make stars

and beaded ornament covers

I have been stitching some as well,
but can't show any of that yet.

Still have so much to do and will be busy this weekend.

Enjoy your weekend!

Thursday, November 26, 2015


Thankful for you all!
Wishing you a very 
Blessed Thanksgiving!

and safe travels too!

Thursday, November 19, 2015


How is it possible that Thanksgiving is next week and I still have Halloween on my header?
 Life has kept me from posting and when I do get a few minutes to write a post, my internet is down.  I'm writing this post on my phone and it's not so easy, lol.

 Hopefully I'll be able to write a proper post soon.  We have a winter storm warning for tomorrow night and Saturday.  The predicted snowfall is 6-10 inches for my area. 

Be safe!

Sunday, October 4, 2015

Happy October!

Just a quick post today.  
I've decided there's no way I'll ever catch up, so I've quit trying.

Can't show you much in the way of stitching since most of it is for gifts.  I did get August done for the monthly SAL, but I haven't finished September yet.

Monthly SAL
Stitched on 28 ct Black Monaco
with Six Strand Sweets ~ Mango

Hubby had to travel to Dearborn, Michigan during September and I was able to get some time off and travel with him.  While in Dearborn, we visited the Henry Ford Museum, Greenfield Village and the Rouge Ford Plant.  Hubby had been to the museum when he was a kid, but it was my first time there.

From Dearborn, we drove north to Mackinaw City and then took the ferry to Mackinac Island. Having never been to that area, we enjoyed the ferry ride and seeing the Island.  We took the long way home by driving through Michigan's Upper Peninsula and Wisconsin to get back to Illinois.

Dottie Dog and Skye the Grand-Dogger enjoyed an early fall campfire with us at the campgrounds.  Both girls love roasted marshmallows! I do too.

The garden is still producing tomatoes and zucchini.  My MIL gave us some Heirloom Rose tomato plants for our garden this year.  I've never seen tomato plants get as big as these and the fruits have been HUGE.  The photo above shows the "average" size of the tomatoes!  We had some that were even larger. They have been so yummy and make great slices for sandwiches and hamburgers.
Wow, it's sure feeling like fall in my area.  There's a chill in the air and I haven't been able to get warm.  Hubby thinks it's too early and refuses to turn the furnace on or start a fire in the woodstove.  The trees have started to change colors and all the farmers are busy harvesting their crops.  Speaking of farmers, the local grain elevator has been running 24/7 for three weeks now and I'm miserable with allergies.

Have a great week!

Monday, August 31, 2015

Ummm....what happened to August?

Just a quick note to let you know I haven't disappeared. 
I've been so super busy and had to let some things slide.  

With things starting to settle down a bit, I hope to be back to blogging soon.

I can't believe September starts tomorrow.  

What happened to August?



Saturday, August 15, 2015

Who's Ready for Autumn Colors?

If you're ready for some Autumn colors, head over to Victorian Motto Sampler Shoppe.  Nancy is giving away boxed sets of her scrumptious Autumn Colored floss.

If you've purchased and used Nancy's floss, you already know how great it is.  
If you've not had the chance to use Nancy's floss, you're missing out.

While you're visiting Nancy's blog, check out her other items too.

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

July Finishes

I managed to finish my Patriotic SAL just before the 4th!

July Cottage of the Month
Designer - Country Cottage Needleworks
Completed July 2, 2015
Stitched on 28 ct Light Blue Jobelan

Floss Used:  DMC Variations 4129, 4080, 4000, 4205, 4230, 4045, 4240 
and DMC white
Trim Used:  Tizzy Baby Yarn (no longer available)
Changed month name to USA

While helping with the tornado recovery and clean up a few weeks ago, I took a nasty fall.  The fall forced me to take time off, but it gave me enough stitching time for a few more finishes!

Monthly SAL
Stitched on 28 ct Black Monaco
with Six Strand Sweets floss
June - Chocolate Covered Gummybears (completed June 30)
July - Sorbet Swirl (completed July 8)

July - A Year in Chalk
Designs by Hands On Design
Stitched on WDW 30ct Gunmetal
with suggested GAST threads

August - A Year in Chalk
Designs by Hands On Design
Stitched on WDW 30ct Gunmetal
with suggested GAST threads

Hard to believe just how fast the month of July is going.  My youngest DD has been away at a military base for training since June 13.  Last week, we made the 6 hour drive to visit her for family day.  All she wanted to do was leave the base and have "real" food, so that's just what we did.  She won't be back home until August 5 and then she leaves for an additional 2 weeks of training on August 7.  Her college classes don't resume until after Labor Day, giving her a couple of weeks off before she begins her senior year of college.

Have you started thinking about the Christmas gifts you want to make yet?  I always have great ideas in January, but never get ambitious enough to start stitching.  Then, I seem to really start thinking about it again in July and August, although I might not actually start on any of them until (almost) the last minute.  Why do I do that to myself?  Ornaments are always on my list and I have more people to stitch for this year, which means I really need to get stitching.  

I'm thinking of Christmas in July, lol!

Thursday, June 25, 2015

SFS - 06/2015


Spent:  $0
Earned:  $0
Balance to Carry Over:  $144.22

I'm happy to report that I didn't spend anything again this month!  It was easier not to spend this month because I haven't been able to stitch as much as I would like.  

Although I've met the goals I set for myself during Part 1, I've decided not to participate in Part 2 of the Stitch From Stash.  

I did manage a little stitching this month.  I'm participating in a Patriotic SAL on one of my facebook groups.  A friend sent me a package of her stitching stash because she can no longer stitch.  Among the floss, fabric and charts, I found the CCN July Cottage.

I chose a light blue evenweave fabric from my stash and then chose the floss colors.  I'm using DMC and DMC Variations.

Hubby and I spent a long weekend at our camper.  

It was perfect until Monday evening.  Severe storms moved into the area and 10 confirmed tornadoes came out of that storm cell.  One of the tornadoes hit the campground.  

Tornado damage in various areas of the campground.

We were not hurt and our campsite only suffered minor damage.  Our campsite is on the edge of the tornado's path that destroyed half of the campground.  It is a miracle that there were no fatalities, only 1 serious injury and 5 minor injuries.  

We have much to be thankful for!

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

SFS - 05/2015


Spent:  $0
Earned:  $0
Balance to Carry Over:  $119.22

I'm happy to report that I didn't spend anything again this month!  It's sure hard to resist splurging on the designs and stash that I want, but don't need.

Here's what I've worked on since the end of April and during May:

Monthly SAL
Stitched on 28 ct Black Monaco
with Six Strand Sweets floss
April - Heather's Sweets (shades of light green, blue and pink)
May - Name Unknown (shades of pink, purple and blue -- appears more vibrant in the photo than it really is)

May & June - A Year in Chalk
Designs by Hands On Design
Stitched on WDW 30ct Gunmetal
with suggested GAST threads

I know it's only Wednesday and it's already been a long week!  


Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Dismayed, Discouraged & Disappointed

I've thought about this post for a couple of weeks now.

I love reading everyone's blog and seeing all the great photos you share. When it comes to stitching, I'm always inspired by the choices of designs, fabrics, threads and finishes made by so many talented stitchers.

Recently, it was brought to my attention that the photos we post of our stitching are being used by some to stitch from as a way to avoid purchasing a design or chart.

I can't even describe how that makes me feel!  For the past couple of weeks, I've been looking at lots of photos.  I discovered that there are VERY FEW photos that cannot be used to stitch from.  Even the designers themselves are posting lovely photos of their designs that can be used to stitch from.

I do not want to contribute to copyright infringement in any way and I'm still trying to figure out how to show my stitching without actually "showing" my stitching.   I've made my stitching photos a much smaller size, but I'm not sure that's enough to prevent the photos being used to stitch from.

I welcome any tips or advice!

A Look Into My Backyard

Apple Blossoms

I think this is a new bird to my backyard.  It's smaller than the Goldfinches and House Finches, but I don't know what kind it is.

We enjoyed a few warm days, but the weather has turned cold again.  It feels more like March than May.  I even had to turn the furnace back on!    

Until next time...

Wednesday, April 22, 2015


Squirrel Activity

Spring Flowers

I've been so busy these past few weeks.  My mom is no longer in remission and we have been going to endless medical appointments.  The oncologist said there is no cure for the type of lymphoma mom has.  She can have treatment and hopefully go into remission, but there is no way to know if and how long remission will last.  Due to her many medical issues and complications, mom has decided not to have additional treatment at this time.   It's possible that mom will change her mind later and decide to have treatment, but for now, while she's feeling ok, she's putting off treatment.

Hubby is becoming more comfortable with the new company and he enjoys the camaraderie with the new bosses.  The new company works to keep employee moral high, but they lack in how they handle human resource issues.  The payroll and benefits are still not completely ironed out and that is super stressful for us.

Not much stitching going on these days.  I have high hopes and long lists of designs I want to stitch, just not enough energy or hours in the day.  I'm so exhausted by dinner time that I can barely keep my eyes open!

It's downhill until the weekend and for once, there is nothing planned.  I'm looking forward to some much needed down time.  Just got the A Year in Chalk charts for May and June so I might even get some stitching done!

What do you have planned for the weekend?


SFS - 04/2015


Spent:  $0
Earned:  $0
Balance to Carry Over:  $94.22

I'm happy to report that I spent NOTHING again this month.

I have only one small finish to show.  This is from the Country Cottage Needleworks Classic Collection ornaments.  This auto-ship collection started last year and is a birthday gift from my daughters, so it's not included in my SFS budget.

Dear Santa
Design by Country Cottage Needleworks
Stitched on Lakeside Linens 32 ct Light Examplar 
with DMC Variations Floss
Completed April 2015

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

SFS - 03/2015


Spent:  $0
Earned:  $0
Balance to Carry Over:  $69.22

I'm happy to report that I spent NOTHING this month!  I did get the March and April A Year in Chalk designs that my hubby got me for Christmas.  It comes as an auto-ship and since he ordered it in December and he pays for the auto-shipments, I have not included that in my monthly SFS.

I must admit, however, that I'm finding it increasingly difficult to resist purchasing all the designs and stash I keep seeing online.

I'm looking forward to seeing how everyone did this month!

More Chalk

March - A Year in Chalk
Design by Hands On Design
Stitched on WDW 30ct Gunmetal
with suggested GAST threads

April - A Year in Chalk
Design by Hands On Design
Stitched on WDW 30ct Gunmetal
with suggested GAST threads

Robin in Virginia passed along the tip of using starch on the fabric to stiffen it up.  I tried the starch.  Let me tell you, it made a world of difference!   I will most definitely be using starch on the rest of the fabric for this series (and any other flimsy fabric I have).

I wanted to pass along another tip about this series for those of you yet to stitch these.  The designer told me that each design will take 1 skein of GAST Chalk and that some of the future months may take a little more than 1 skein of GAST Chalk.

Monthly SAL
Stitched on 28 ct Black Monaco
with Six Strand Sweets floss
January -  Wintermint (shades of light blue)
February - Cherries Jublilee (shades of light pink)
March - Creme de Mint (shades of light green)

These will be finished with a coordinating fabric border as a flat piece with magnets so I can display them in my kitchen with the 
A Year in Chalk pieces.

For the first time in several years, I don't have consignment pieces to work on.  I'm loving the freedom of stitching whatever I want.  The problem is that there's just way too much I want to stitch and I actually have several projects started with more waiting.

 Last fall, this Impatient was brought inside for the winter.  It had been hit with frost and only a small portion of the plant was saved.  I'm now being rewarded with blooms!  Anyone know what the whitish things on the plant are?  They look kind of like grains of salt and appeared when the buds appeared.  

Are you having spring in your area?  I say we are having the typical spring here -- sunny and warm one day, cold and snowing the next!

 Happy Spring!

Friday, March 13, 2015

A Year In Chalk

January ~ A Year in Chalk
Designed by Hands On Design
Stitched on 30 ct WDW Gunmetal
with suggested GAST threads 

February ~ A Year in Chalk
Designed by Hands On Design
Stitched on 30 ct WDW Gunmetal
with suggested GAST threads  

I love chalkboards and chalkboard art so it's no surprise that I fell in love with this series.  Hubby gifted the fabric, threads and charts for the whole series to me for Christmas.  I've read on some stitchy blogs that they love the WDW fabric and decided to give it a try.  I have to say, however, that I had so much trouble stitching on this fabric that I wouldn't choose to stitch on this fabric again.  Even though I like the way these look, the fabric feels thin and flimsy to me and I think that makes my stitches looks sloppy.  I normally stitch in hand, but had to use a hoop, which is uncomfortable for me and because of the dark fabric, I can only stitch these during the day when the sun is shining.

I'm going to finish these in a flat ornament style and I'm thinking I'll add magnets to the back to make displaying them easier.  I'm looking for precut matboard.  Hobby Lobby used to sell it in different sizes, but they don't have it any more.  Any ideas where I can order it?

Anyone else stitching these?  What fabric are you using?
How are you finishing them?

Spring is coming!  In the past week, we've had much warmer temps and our snow is just about all gone.  One day the snow pile was 2 feet deep and the next it was completely gone.  The Resurrection Lilies and Tulips are coming up and I saw 2 Robins in the backyard this morning!

Have a great weekend!


Thursday, March 5, 2015


Late last summer, I heard an unusual sound -- over and over and over again.  It was loud and clear, but I didn't know if it was a bird, a tree frog or some kind of insect/bug.   I even did an internet search trying to find out just what I was hearing.  Except I couldn't find anything because I couldn't accurately describe the sound. 

I now know it's described as "wheedle-wheedle-wheedle" or "peter-peter-peter"

As the weather turned colder, I no longer heard the sound... 

Early in February, I saw a new bird visitor in my back yard.  I only caught a glimpse of it at first and it was so fast as it moved between the tree branches.  

Finally, I was able to get a few photos.  My new visitor is a Tufted Titmouse!  They have such a cute, happy expression. 

A few days after my first glimpse of this little bird, I heard that sound again.  I'm finally able to identify where the sound comes from -- it's the Tufted Titmouse's song

I hear the Tufted Titmouse much more than I see them.  Their song is so loud and clear.  I can even hear it when I'm in the house.

Until next time...

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

SFS - 02/2015


Spent:  $3.15
Earned:  $0
Balance to Carry Over:  $44.22

I ran out of thread for one of my WIP's and purchased a skein of GAST.  

Since I decided to participate in Stitch From Stash, I took some time to go through my WIP's, UFO's and designs waiting to be started.  Here are just a few:

Little House Needleworks
2011 Ornament Series -- 10 of 12 yet to start
2012 Ornament Series -- 10 of 12 yet to start
Snow In Love - WIP
Hands to Work
2015 Ornament Series

Country Cottage Needleworks
Frosty Forest Series
Santa's Village Series
Classic Collection Ornaments

Do Your Best kit
Snow Dudes
Snow Belles
4 Seasons
Things Unseen kit

Threadwork Primitives
Christmas Fruit Basket - WIP

I have tons more and if there was never a new design published ever again, I'd still have more than enough to keep me stitching! 

This is the design I won in the SFS January drawing.  I'm so excited to receive this chart as it's been one I've wanted.

I'm looking forward to March and (hopefully) warmer weather!