Thursday, December 29, 2011

Redheaded Woodpecker

He is the cutest thing...the birds have been going crazy with the feeders on the front porch. Its not really visible in the picture, but he has a patch of red feathers right on top of his head. Maybe next time I try for a picture he'll let me get a little closer. I can see the feeders from my kitchen window and enjoy watching them when doing dishes and cooking. Next week is gonna get really cold...Im stocked up on suet cakes and ready for all my small feathery friends.

It was too funny, I opened the front door to put away the Christmas decorations before the bad weather hits and I swear about 20 small birds took flight. I almost peed my pants, I forgot that they were probably out there. They all waited in the branches of a near by tree for me to get done.

Monday, December 26, 2011

Christmas Eve

My daughter hosted Christmas Eve. She worked so hard & the food was wonderful! She made this ham that was to die for...and had homemade artichoke dip, Christmas cupcakes, punch, eggnogg cups rimmed with white chocolate and sprinkles, and lots of other goodies. She even handmade all her decorations!( the Fa La Laaa wall and the little Christmas trees...)

We all had a great time playing games & spending time with family. Thanks for such a great night sis:)

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

DIY Fancy Earbuds

Luv this idea for covering your earbud cords! It does help with tangling too. Used the same technique that was used to make these tribal necklaces . After endless searching for how to actually wrap it, I found this site . It has a great tutorial with pictures and directions. It wasnt hard, just a bit time consuming. I used the varigated purples (DMC thread),which used 2-3 skeins. I havent decided whether I want to do all the way up to my earbuds or not, so for now I just did the cord itself.
If you dont want to make your own these are available on Etsy.(top picture-green)

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Special Ornaments

I received some very special ornaments today. My cousin sent me the nativity scene (top) which is made of coal from Kimball, WV., a natural resource in her area...and the candy cane was especially made for me by my nephew David. My favorite color is turquoise....and the light on the tree reflects the colors perfectly! Good Job! I love them both! TY!

In a way, I guess I did end up getting coal for Christmas after all!

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Christmas Past

I enjoy looking through old Christmas albums... seeing how those you love have grown & changed over the years, or remembering those that will be missed, but held close to your heart all year round.
Usually, I look through pictures of my kids, but last year I came across some pictures my mom had. This is one of my favorites. My cousin and I visiting the "Talking Christmas Tree" at the Bergner's Dept. store. We did this every year when we were kids. We'd attend the big Christmas parade downtown, go Christmas shopping,do lunch, go to all the big department stores and see the huge Christmas displays in the windows. The stores always used to try to out-do each other.
Now days, the big department store buildings are gone, along with most of the Christmas spirit.
I remember that I couldnt wait for the Christmas season to start. Baking cookies with mom in the kitchen, Christmas caroling, sending out cards, the church Christmas programs, ice-skating, wrapping presents, picking out the candy for our advent ribbons, lots of Christmas movies, school parties and dont forget the pot-lucks with friends. As I get older I appreciate the Christmas memories more and more every year. No matter how hard I try to bring those feelings of Christmas to my family every year it just doesnt seem to work. To much has changed.The simple things replaced with fast paced activities and grumpy shoppers. I miss the good ole days, but we have new traditions for our immediate family now and other Christmas activities to keep us busy during the season. Hopefully my kids will have good memories of their own in a new generation sort of way. Ones that will put a smile on their faces for years to come as they remember their own Christmas magic.
Remember those you love, be kind to those you dont and help others when possible.
Merry Christmas.

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Cross Stitch Santa Hat

I recently found this pattern and thought it was adorable! Hoping it goes on sale after Christmas!

Monday, December 12, 2011

Cabled Keyhole Scarf

I know at least two people that would love this! Its a little late for me to start knitting projects for this Christmas, but a surprise gift is always welcome, right?
I read about the project on and got the link for ordering the pattern. Some of my favorite projects are the ones that you store in a bag and grab on your way out the door.The color she chose is very pretty ... shopping for the color of your project is a big part of the fun.

Christmas Kitties

Santa Kesha

Camille playing in the boxes on decoration day.

Now I just need a Christmas picture of Carmen.

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Needlework Trees

I thought these were adorable! Cant wait to get my leaflet.
I also have a "skein" alphabet that would go great with this theme:)

Friday, December 9, 2011

Christmas Kitty Cross Stitch

This biscornu served as a Christmas tag for one of my moms gifts, and yes there is a story behind it.
I found Bella as a stray almost two years ago right before Mother's Day. She was skinny & hungry. The other kitties that had been abandoned in that neighborhood wouldnt let her eat any of the food some one had put out for them. She wasnt of the same litter as them, she was a bit older but still hungry all the same. It broke my heart to watch her try to eat after I shew'd her away from the street. She kept following me on my walk, would run ahead of me and just drop in front of my feet till I practically tripped over her.(I felt bad for all the kitties, but the neighbors were looking out for the younger litter.) So, having a big heart I couldnt leave her there...I scooped her up & took her with me. Since Im allergic to cats, guess what my mom got as a present. I showed up on my moms door step sneezing & swollen-eyed. At first she didnt want anything to do with her, but allowed her to stay on the covered back porch until I could find her a home.(She was pretty adamant in saying she didnt want any more pets of her own, especially a cat.) Of coarse I came over every day to check on her and play ....then I discovered mom was sneaking out to the back porch to luv on her too. She must have grown on my mom because she decided to keep her after all. Now, Bella is a spoiled house kitty with a big princess attitude, and she is definitely not hungry any more. The best thing about the whole situation was the next Mother's Day mom took me aside and told me Bella was the best present she'd ever gotten & thanked me. Mom loves her and Bella loves my mom just as much. What a blessing they have turned out to be for each other.

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Crochet Snow Flakes

Luv these! I havent made these yet , but now that most of my stitching is done I can play around with some fun stuff. I think these are very striking in a natural sort of way. Since these arent colored for the holidays they can be used throughout the whole winter as a decorative pick me up. The colors just seemed to catch my eye. Just think you could work up some of these on a bitter cold night, curled up by a warm fire, with a nice cuppa hot tea & some good company. Sounds amazing right? (sigh)

Christmas Biscornu

This Christmas Biscornu was made for a private cross stitch Christmas swap with my cousin Heidi. She saved a spot on her tree for my ornament , front & center...'cause of coarse, I called shot gun!

I really liked the pattern when I first saw it, but it does look pretty busy on paper. So I wasnt sure how it would look all finished. I luv it!! Looks like " Candy Canes & Christmas"! After my very trying and disastrous experience with the 15 sided biscornu project, this one turned out the way it was supposed to! Halleluya! I hope she likes the results as much as I do. Now I have to stitch another one up for me.

For Pattern:

Monday, December 5, 2011

Handmade Pop-up Christmas Card

Hoping this will be a big surprise when she opens it! ( This was also made for the swap--cant you just feel the luv?) Any way, I wanted to do some thing special & fun. I did actually buy cards again this year but some times you just need that some thing more.

Friday, December 2, 2011

Olie's Christmas Pictures

We were trying ,without success I might add, to get Olie to sit still for a Christmas picture. Our goal was to get him to sit on the stool next to the Christmas tree. Doesnt sound to complicated does it? What were we thinking? We were lucky he didnt knock it over, as his tail made it look like a wiggling dashboard ornament. So I had my son help and tried to bribe Olie with Peanut Butter on a spoon. One of his favorites. Olie got so excited his boy was giving him a treat all he could do was run around howling (and he's very fast)! LOL We had no idea taking a picture would end up being such an "I Love Lucy" moment. (In the last picture he finally got his PB.)

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Knitting For Christmas

I am making a neckwarmer for my cousin this Christmas. The pattern stitch is featured in the book "Knit One Below". It took me a little bit to get in the rythem of the pattern, but after that, I am good as long as I'm paying attention lol. I do wish the stitches were a little tighter. Usually when knitting Im to tight but working with two yarns was another first for me. Im a little over half way finished and still have to figure out where to add the button holes. Hope she loves the colors, I like the color play of the pattern.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

15 Sided Biscornu / Tutorial

This was my first attempt for a 15 sided biscornu, and I have to tell you, I found it rather difficult to sew together compared to the regular ones. Im guessing it gets easier with practice...(wink wink). Any hoo this was made for my friend/neighbor's upcoming birthday. All the individual squares turned out great, so Im hoping it pulls together nicely in the end. I found this tutorial on finishing a 15 sided biscornu as it can be some what confusing the first time.Im almost done...have the bottom layer to finish and sew on & then I can stuff and close it.

While I was sewing the small squares together, I noticed it was causing alot of fraying around the edges. So, I went around the very outside of each square with Fray Block ,dries clear, flexable & washable. That should do the trick. (It might have worked better for me if I did this step before sewing the pieces together.)

Finished it today, but it looks really rough around the edges to say the least and the points didnt turn out at all! Not exactly the look I was going for!! I had trouble getting it together through the whole project! At least I can say I gave this one a try, but from now on I think Ill stick with the regular biscornus.(Never Again!)

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Pixie Dust Lap Blanket

Wow, I sooooo luv this!! The yarn was a bit out of my price looks like this wont be one of my upcoming projects in the near furture.What a shame they even have my favorite color--turquoise! Any one feeling jolly yet? Will work for yarn!

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Nursery Rhyme ATC

The full pattern for this is found in Mary Engelbreit's "Cross Stitch for All Seasons". I found a copy of her book at our local library. It has lots of great patterns, this book is a real gem.

This particular ATC was " lost" in the mail. My partner only received the front of the envelope!

She sent me a picture of what she received...the envie was even on all four sides like it had been opened with a letter opener, and it was sent as a machines. Hmmm sounds like I made some one at the post office very happy! What a shame!

I havent been posting as often because I dropped my camera after vacation & havent had the time to replace it:( Working on it though...

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Movie ATC / Sept.

I loved the idea of the movie theme for this month, but thought that patterns would be easier to find. I dug in the search for a pattern right away and three days later was ready to pull my hair out. After all that I had found only one pattern for a movie I totally love (Labyrinth) , but it had to be ordered --I wasnt sure it would get here in time for me to get it stitched up & I wasnt sure that the part of the pattern I wanted to use (David Bowie- The Goblin King) would fit on my card. Sooo, I was mulling over options with my stitchy cousin, Heidi , when it dawned on me that I had this Mary Poppins pattern all along!! Talk about a DUH moment. Any way I love this movie too so it all worked out.

Sunday, August 28, 2011

so...there comes a time in your life when you walk away from all the drama,
hate and hypocrisy and the people who create it.
You try to surround yourself with people who make you laugh,
people who speak their truths and have no ulterior motives...
Forget the bad, focus on the good, love the people who treat you right,
pray for the ones who don't...
Life is too short to be anything but happy. Falling down is part of life, getting back up is living.

by unknown
Dan Witz: New Night Paintings

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Fashion ATC

Another stitched ATC done! Fashion theme for the month of August. I was looking for something that reflected a Diva!

Received ATC- 70's Disco Diva , the picture does not do it justice! Made by Gill Bickerstaff.

Thanks ...she's awesome!

Monday, July 25, 2011

Knit Shop in Champaign

Found this great knit shop going through town when I went to pick up my daughter. She's not exactly into yarn crafts or shopping for them. So when I was pulling into the parking lot the expected groan and eye roll came. Granted she wasnt feeling 100% so I didnt spend as much time in there as I normally would have, but I enjoyed the side trip any way. Im pretty sure that Im not the only knitter/crocheter with yarn store radar. Half the cool shops Ive visited were found by accident. The store actually spans three large spaces-- between the two shop signs pictured. Since I already have yarn for alot of future projects I stuck to just getting some whimsical buttons for a hat pattern I plan on making for winter. Thanks for indulging your mothers yarn fetish<3