Thursday, April 30, 2009


Yay!!! I had my haircut today and it looks great ~ fresh and soft! But that’s not what I’m “Yay-ing” about. When I got home I was pleasantly surprised at what was in the mail waiting my arrival. :o)

ountry Sampler Velvet Sampler Bag
Stacy Nash Primitives

This is the kit I received because I’m a member of Stacy’s girl club through the Country Sampler - a fabulous shop in Wisconsin. (I’ve never been there, but the website is great and I receive the newsletter.) This kit has some really gorgeous fabrics. I love, love, love the blue-flowered print fabric, the soft wheat-colored velvet, and the blue (DMC 930) peacock motif that compliments the whole design. I can’t wait to get started and have it assembled. It’s going to be a great addition to the everyday stitching basket.

On top of this amazing kit, and to end this happy trip to the mailbox, I also received my Fons & Porter's Love of Quilting magazine. I L*O*V*E the quilt on the cover and I will have to seek out ways to incorporate this into my quilting to-dos. That Civil War fabric gets me every time! I'm such a sucker. I NEED my Aunt Pam here though to help me pick the fabrics out.

I started reading The Host this afternoon and already I can see the difference in Stephanie Meyer's writing from the Twilight series. I have to put my current rotation aside and get busy stitching on a project that I cannot divulge at this time, so I won't have any progress photos until I get this done, but I'll check in of course. I’m off to stitch a bit and then to bed. I'm glad tomorrow is Friday - Whew!

Talk soon!

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

i'm done

I'M DONE! I’ve read all four Stephanie Meyer Twilight series books. I’m done and now I’m crying. I’m actually crying ~ started crying the last 3 pages. The end was perfect. I couldn’t have asked for a better ending. I love all four books, but Breaking Dawn is my favorite after Twilight.

Firstly, I am ashamed to say that I skimmed through New Moon a lot of the way and I believe I was unfairly bias through that book. I am going to re-read New Moon so that I can get to know Jacob better because he deserves my attention, every reader’s attention. And secondly, New Moon was really about Bella’s pain; pain so dark and deep that it was difficult to get through because I wanted Edward to return so badly. Meyer did such a tremendous job with yanking my mood from one spot to the other-through all four. I owe it to Meyer and to Jacob Black because I know how hard it was for Meyer to write New Moon. Writing N.M. didn’t come as naturally as Twilight. Jacob was and is such a good and decent friend to Bella. I’m envious of their relationship.

I mention New Moon in a Breaking Dawn review because after reading all four books it’s my opinion that N.M. is the book that catapults this story into what it has become, and then Breaking Dawn solidifies and ties the story together. Because of B.D., N.M. makes more sense. Ah, I just love Meyer for this!

Breaking Dawn, however, is the ultimate novel. I didn’t find this book to be teeny-bopper at all. In fact, it was rather grown up. This book has everything: love and hate, turmoil, lust, death, birth, renewal, trust, loyalty, confrontation, thirst, parentage, and Edward, Edward, Edward. I love him! He will always be one of my favorite characters till the day I die. There is no one sexier than he. I hate Bella for this, but love her because as Meyer writes, “Edward was hers forever.” I love that!

Through all these novels, I love how Meyer kept the dying question askew: Is Bella going to be changed into a vampire? I won’t tell you the answer, but Meyer delivers everything you’ve ever wanted from this story. I’m truly going to miss these characters. Thankfully, I own all the books so I can always go and visit Forks…and I will.

Thanks for listening…talk soon!

a new start

Yesterday I was at mom’s house and brought along a new project. I didn’t get that far into it, but hey it is something new, right?!?! Right!

This is (or will be) Movie Night by The Sampler Girl. This was probably one of the first Sampler Girl designs I ever bought. I couldn’t resist because I watch movies just about every night of my life whether they are brand new to me or reruns ~ movies comfort my soul.

It calls for the sweetest 7 popcorn buttons which I have. I just didn’t photograph them here. I didn’t have all the items the chart called for, but some. I know Tanya won’t mind that I substituted for what I had on stash. :o) I love the Presidential Blue and I didn’t have 28 ct Tea Dyed linen so I opted for 28 ct Amber which I think blends well with the floss.

I’ve got an idea for a collage that one day may end up being my blog topper and Movie Night will be an important cog in my blogging machine. The only other thing going on right now is that I have a cross between a sinus infection and allergy attacks. My sinus cavity won’t make up its mind and I have no control over it so it needs to make it up and fast. I’m embarrassed to say that I haven’t had my haircut in a year so tomorrow is the day I’m taking the plunge and getting it trimmed and highlighted.

I’ll be getting LOST in a few hours…Talk soon!

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

reading questions to all

Dear Fellow Stitchers:

I have a question that I'm dying to ask anyone and everyone who reads. I have noticed lots of people that have more than one "currently-reading" book on their shelf. Is that possible? Is that really possible to read more than one book at a time? How? I realize I can stitch on more than one project, but a book?!?! How can you put one down in order to pick another one up? I feel so foolish asking such silly questions since I run through the same motions with stitching, but storytelling is different. I would be afraid I'd get my stories crossed. My peeps mixed up. I'd be afraid I'd lose interest in one story so that I could keep up with another.

How do you do this?

Monday, April 27, 2009

stitching and reading

Second post of the day ~ Yay! Last night I finished assembling My Needle Book by Blackbird Designs and this morning I stained it with walnut crystals and let it dry in the sun for 30 minutes. To finish things off I used a flower eyelet for a closure with a piece of yarn.

I used all the called for supplies with respect to the DMC and 40 ct Antique White linen. I used walnut crystals instead of tan Rit Dye. Since I don’t know how to crochet I used a flower eyelet and a single piece of yarn as the closure. The yarn came from my grandmother’s supplies and I finished it with a buttonhole stitch around the seam. I’m happy with the results.

When I was at my mom’s house on Saturday I went through her bookshelves and picked out some books to read. I am on a reading kick. I’m so motivated to read whatever I can get my hands on. I’m just about finished with Breaking Dawn. I have less than 50 pages to go and I’m really streaming this one along as slowly as I can. I’m going to miss the characters so much.

I have been contemplating joining a book club. It sounds like a lot of fun, and to be able to get away for a girls’ night out book club meeting sounds fun. The group I could join meets at a bookstore in the coffee shop. That just sounds so relaxing.

On a side note…after waiting 2 months I finally received my hand gun carry permit. It came in the mail on Saturday. Today I went to the grocery store and was concealing my gun and I’ll admit it felt kind of strange. I definitely didn’t feel “powerful” as some might feel or think. Instead I felt like everyone was staring and noticing me more, but that wasn’t the case. People really don’t pay that close attention so no one even noticed because they aren’t looking for it. My DH said he felt the same way at first, but then he got over that. Besides, I have the right to carry so enough said.

Me and Cameron are going to mom’s house tomorrow. I don’t have anything else to add right now. I’m sure I’ll come up with something soon. :D Talk soon!

friends & stitching...well almost stitching

"Friendship is unnecessary, like philosophy, like art... It has no survival value; rather is one of those things that give value to survival."
- C. S. Lewis

Saturday I spent the entire day at moms with two of our stitchy gal pals, Sally and Susan. Mom and I see them at our LNS when there are sit ‘n stitches and other various needlework showcases. We have all attended local classes together. We have attended classes and events outside of Tennessee like Celebration. We’ve even shared a plane ride to Florida for a class in St. Augustine.

One thing mom and I have never done was spend time with them outside of these endeavors. The four of us have never spent leisure time just being girls and hangin’ out. This past Saturday was a real treat. Usually it’s just me and my mom and that is always A-OKAY because me and mom are friends and we spend a good amount of time together whether on the phone, through email or just together. It’s always just us, but Saturday was different. We got to be a part of a little group of stitching enthusiasts and we had so much fun.

We had lunch which mom and I made. Sally and Susan brought the Diet Cokes and dessert. And mom provided the overwhelming stitching stash galore. Susan and Sally were in awe over my mom’s room. Her entire house is covered in wall-to-wall stitching ~ much like an exhibit. My mom lives out in the woods so that is in itself a breathtaking experience. It’s cozy, quiet, cheery and bright…even when the trees hide the sun. Mom’s house is just a nice place to sit ‘n stitch. Mom’s a great hostess too.

Not a lot of stitching was had because mom has WAY TOO MUCH stuff…well never enough stitching stuff, but if you go to moms you’ll never pick up a needle – at least not for the first few visits. :o) You’ll be pawing through never-ending flowing baskets and bins of stitching stuff. She has everything! Lift a lid to something and inside is a little surprise. It’s just a lot of fun and I think Susan and Sally had a good time. I know we did! We hope to do it again very soon.

Talk soon!

Friday, April 24, 2009

samplers & such

I finished stitching My Needle Book from the My Heart Is True booklet by Blackbird Designs. In the finishing instructions it mentions crocheting a loop closure, but I don’t crochet. I have some brainstorming to do about how I’ll resolve this.

And I have a decision to make about which fabric to use on the inside of the needle book. Here are the two pieces I’m looking to for finishing but I need to pick one ~ which one?

This BBD piece was parked on Tuesday and right when I had a project chosen for this day I finished it the very next week and have to decide again (maybe I need a bigger project- hmmm) what will take its place. Decisions, decisions, decisions…

Most of you know that Alma and Barbara (BBD creators) started a blog and have listed a freebie called Petites Lettres Rouges so admirers can stitch it and enter into their contest. I’m using DMC and stitching it on 28 ct Antique Ivory. I haven’t decided on the finishing yet; maybe a pillow for my bed. I’m definitely using my late-grandmother’s maiden name and her birth year. Here’s my progress on the piece.

I finally picked a project for Wednesday. I discovered this sampler in the Sampler & Antique Needlework quarterly magazine. It’s amazing what a person can forget about. It’s a Dutch Band Sampler by Katie Trendell.

(I don’t want to mark up the magazine so I made a color-copy.) I have no clue who Katie Trendell is, but the reproduction and design is just lovely. I love all the colors and won’t be changing them. It calls for Gloriana silks, but I don’t have any of those and cannot afford a list of 11 so I’m using DMC. I’m adjusting the fabric though and using 36 ct Flax. I started stitching it on Wednesday night and even though I didn’t get a whole lot of stitching in, frogs descended upon my linen. Ugh!!! What little progress I made has been wasted and now I have to re-start. Is this some kind of omen??? I hope not because I really really like this sampler.

Saturday is going to be a fun-filled day! I’m heading over to moms for an all-day stitching extravaganza with our stitchy gal-pals Sally and Susan (no blogs). It is going to be so much fun. Sally and Susan have not been to my mom’s house and they are going to explode when they see my mom’s room and her stash (they’ve seen a few photos). My mom has everything under the sun ~ I swear!!! It’s like a shoppe. Anyway, I cannot wait. I’m taking a scrumptious dish and I hope they like it. S&S are bringing the dessert and Diet Cokes. :o) And ALL my boys are staying home. Yay for me!!

Talk soon!

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

one week later...

I am relieved about the progress of Cameron’s eye. His eye is healing so quickly. Every day there is change and improvement, I just can’t believe it. Right now it looks like a mustard stain, but the swelling has completely vanished and there is little evidence of a scab. One week later and his little eye is practically 100% healed!

I got her! I got her! Meaning, I was finally able to get a photo of mama robin perched in her nest. Since her nest is so close to our front door it’s relatively impossible to get a good photo of her outside so I had to improvise and get one through the glass door. I had the curtains drawn and had my camera zoomed and ready for action. Birds must have super sonic hearing because it’s difficult to walk up to the door before she notices and briskly flies away. But I got her this time. I tip-toed to the door and before she really heard me I got my photo of her one week after she began construction of her nest.

One week ago I put in a request to Sandy (she’s family) for a pair of handmade earrings. Sandy owns SLeeK Beaded Jewelry which designs customized jewelry and she’s really, really good at it. Sandy has a keen eye and pays attention to detail. I didn’t have a photo of what I wanted. All I could do was describe to her what I wanted and she pulled it together with such finesse ~ very impressive! Sandy and I went back and forth through email (she lives in Ohio) for a couple days. She had photos of examples to show me and through many questions and answers she pulled this together. I was pleasantly surprised because I didn't see them until they arrived in the mail yesterday. :o)

I absolutely love my earrings! I couldn’t have found anything like this in a store that mean as much and are as perfect as these. These are one of a kind and they are mine, all mine! Thank you, thank you, thank you so much, Sandy! I love them!

Yesterday, my mother came by for a short visit and with her came Stephanie Meyer's adult novel The Host. My mom was at Target and bought the book for me. I'm not starting The Host until I finish Breaking Dawn. I can't read more than one book at a time. Well, I've never tried to before but I still don't think I can so I'll wait.

That’s it for now. Talk soon!

Monday, April 20, 2009

from the babbling brook

Ahhhh!!! I’ve got so much to blab about it isn’t even funny. Ever since last Wednesday I’ve been rather busy and not just with stitching because I really don’t have a whole lot of stitchy-news, but just life in general. My Uncle and grandparents came to town for a visit on Wednesday and just left yesterday morning.

Sunday, April 19 was my Aunt Pam’s birthday and as far as I can tell she received a lot of lovely gifts. My mom sent her a Rascal Flatts CD along with a discontinued Vera Bradley bag called Little Traveler. This bag is genius for stitchers, let me tell you!

30 ct. Straw linen by WDW
DMC threads listed by designer

I stitched and assembled primitivebettys My Favorite Kitten Pinkeep for my aunt. I even added my own personal tag to the side of the kitty. My aunt’s home is a safe haven for cats of all denominations. :o) I think at one point she might have had 12 cats, and she has a dog too. She’s an amazing feline mother and thought it only appropriate for her to have one of “my cats” for her “studio” (as she calls her room). She loved it and I’m happy that she does. It may even be her first “primitive” piece. My aunt’s specialty is samplers. Her walls are like a museum of sampler art from the last 20+ years. She does amazing work. She received other wonderful treats from her friends and daughter too. I think she had an overall fantastic birthday. Happy Birthday, Aunt Pam!!!

28 ct. White Monaco (coffee dyed)
DMC colors of choice

Awhile back I stitched my mom primitivebettys Spring Time tulip freebie design as a just-because-I-love-you gift. I made moms into a wall hanging and used yellow and gold tones as the primary colors. I liked hers so much that I made myself one. I changed the colors just a tad, added some buttons, fabric on the back and made it into a pinkeep. I really like how it turned out. And I must admit that I’m getting better at whip stitching which is a much needed relief . The navy blue, flowery fabric in the background is what I used as the finishing fabric.

4o ct. White linen
DMC threads listed by designer

I have begun a dainty piece from Blackbird Designs called My Needle Book. It’s from the My Heart Is True booklet that was released earlier this year. I decided Tuesday needed to be filled so BBD took its place. Wednesday is still open, can you believe that? In addition to this project I decided to take a stab at the contest piece that Alma and Barb are having. It’s a sweet, sweet piece so go check out the details on their blog.

An outside report ~ Spring is definitely in the air and so are my allergies. I am miserable! Can’t say it enough. When I was younger I used to get shots in both arms twice a week. This went on for sometime, but now I have nothing to help me cope. I need to get on this and soon.

Aside from this, there is a robin that is making quite the home atop one of the columns on our front porch.

Before she accomplished her temporary home she had one hell of a time getting the initial twigs and debris to stay up there. We’ve had many, many storms come through and to say that it hasn’t been windy would be an understatement. As you can see, she made quite the mess on the porch, which I’m leaving there in case she needs extra insulation for her babies, but I believe she’s a good mama. She never quit. She kept on persevering until the job was done. Day in and day out ~ she never stopped gathering whatever she could fit into her mouth and find on the ground to stack up on that column. Yay for mama robin!

On Saturday morning the older boys were doing “manly” things outside while Cameron and I stayed inside. (I could barely take the outside because of my allergies.) It was perfect weather, but I couldn’t handle it. Once I stepped foot outside, it took at least 30 minutes to recover once I returned inside.

Jose mowed the front and backyards. We are almost on a full acre (.79 to be exact) and that may not sound like a lot to some, but when you live within city limits, 8 minutes if that from downtown, that is a gracious amount of property…and we’re paying for every shard and blade of grass too!

DH played with his Cobra Mustang while the child worked his tail off (he did assist though). DH does this every spring because he stores the car through the winter, so it is time to get Sally out and play around with her. He’s had this car a long time and has spent many, many nights, days and mornings with her. She’s been driven like 10,000 horses and treated like a baby all her life. She is a beauty though and she is extremely and violently fast. The torque is insane in this thing. There is some work to be done in the rear so DH is going to sell one of his guns in order to pay for it.

I have really been on a reading kick lately. Ever since I dove into the Twilight saga I have been so curious to read as many novels as I can cram into my life, for the rest of my life. I’ve read books here and there in the past, but never religiously or diligently; not like I have with the Twilight series and not how I want to continue from this day forward. I also met a really neat girl named Annie on Goodreads. She writes and has amazingly articulate reviews to what she reads. She is a read-aholic in my book and I love reading what she has to say. I find her opinions insightful and comprehensive.

my 'to-read' shelf:

 my to-read shelf

I joined Goodreads dot com in October 2008 and have recently added more and more books, especially in the last week. I’ve taken a few quizzes and read reviews. I have found numerous quotes that I simply adore if not stand true to myself. I’m a bit philosophical myself at times. I have a few friends and hope to gain more. I really need help and insight into the storytelling world as I’m fairly new to this arena and wouldn’t know what was good and what isn’t. Tanya is another great source of reading insight too. I don’t know how she crams all this reading into her already abundantly busy life. :D

Anyhoo, I’ve added numerous ‘to-read’ books on my sidebar and quotes that really mean something to me now or struck me when I read them, especially Stephanie Meyer. So far she is my favorite author, and she’ll always be a favorite but there are other favs of mine, but she takes top-spot right now. I love the quotes from Twilight.

I’m nearly finished with Breaking Dawn by Meyer (on page 601) and I believe I’ll pick up The Host by Meyer after BD. I hear The Host is excellent and that Meyer only gets better in tune with her writing. Since I cannot afford to buy all the books, I’ll need to head to the library. Hopefully, it’s available.

Ugh! I’m finished. My babbling brook has arrived at the precipice. Talk soon!

Friday, April 17, 2009

kindness and thoughtfulness

Yesterday Cameron (me too!) received the kindest gifts from the two loveliest of people on the planet that I haven’t had the privilege of meeting…yet: Zack and Tanya! They felt badly for Cameron’s BIG boo boo and felt determined to make him feel better and they sooooooo did make that happen. They sent him two precious little gifts to cheer up Cameron’s day and it did bring about that distraction that Tanya so desired. Your plan worked. He hasn’t stopped playing with the “milk and cookies.” They were the first things Cameron grabbed when he woke this morning.

I couldn’t open the package fast enough for Cameron. He was trembling he wanted the surprises so much. He received a book called Boo Hoo Bird and it has the most vibrant illustrations I’ve seen in a children’s book. The book is also very appropriate since Cameron did bonk his little head, just like Bird in the story. We had ourselves a giggle at the end when it happened all over again, just like Cameron. I had to laugh at the very beginning, Tanya, because there was a raccoon that was the first to help Bird, and we know how much Tanya loves, loves, loves raccoons. LOL Cameron also got this really cool toy called Milk and Cookies where you put colored cookies into the cookie jar. When its time for the cookies to come out, Cameron can dump the jar and a moo sound occurs – very, very cute!

There was two very cute little notes in there from Zack telling Cameron he hopes he feels better, sorry about his boo boo, and that he has the same toy so he knows Cameron will like it. Ah! Zack is the coolest little 2 year old I know. :D Thank you so much, Zack!!! You are a dear sweet boy! I wish I could just hug you!!!

I said at the beginning that “me too!” received a gift and I physically didn’t get a gift. In fact, I received something better than a material possession. I received continual friendship, kindness, understanding and compassion from a wonderful soul and mother herself. Tanya, you have no earthly idea what this means to me that you and little Zack felt enough to send Cameron along a couple gifts. It did distract Cameron and I think it made me feel better than it did him. Thank you from the bottom of my heart. I will never forget this day.

Since we're on the subject of Cameron, here are a few photos of his eye 2-days after his accident. There is some progress. The swelling has subsided, but it's a bit puffy and getting more discolored by the day. He checks himself out in the mirror from time to time. Where he had bled that has now scabbed over.

Cameron and I are off to Mom's house. Cameron's great-grandma and great-grandpa and Uncle Jimmy are here visiting so we're going to go spend some time with them this afternoon. They arrived Wednesday from Arkansas. I do have other things to share, but I'll save that for another time.

Talk soon!