Thursday, April 14, 2011

shows open!

Run on over to the Online Needlework Show and check out all the venues. Get your list flowing and head to your LNS so they can pony Anyway, you know the drill...Talk soon!

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

"good news" post

I said I had "good news" to share in my last post. At least good news to my eyes. On Saturday, my LNS called to say two of my stitched pieces were framed and ready for pick up. I didn't waste any time. Now, please forgive my photography because I'm no photographer, but more importantly, I don't own a good camera anymore so I do my best with what I have.

The Sampler Lady by Little House Needleworks
I must raise my own needle with this one. I love, love, love the framework on this piece. It matches perfectly with the floral-work in the design and that's why I picked it. I could not be happier about the finish. Kathy, at my LNS, did a superb job!

Schoolgirl Lessons by Little House Needleworks

Again, I'm very pleased with how this design turned out all framed. I liked the beaded edging and for a reason I can't quite put my needle on, I thought it went well with the design (shrugging my shoulders). You may not notice, but around the edges of the beading there is slight hints of red which between that and the Country Vintage linen (that has hints of green), the red Belle Soie I used really pops. It's a dainty piece and I like that.

I finished both these LHN design in 2009 but because of my divorce that ensued afterwards, getting them framed took a backseat. A lot took a backseat, but these ladies are framed and home with fresh walls and a new slate of life.

My late-Aunt Lora stitched this for my mother (her sister) when I was born. Don't know who the designer is, but my mother told me it is stamped cross stitch. I'm divulging quite a bit of personal information about my self in this photo (lol), but I thought it was more important to demonstrate that all the women in my family are needle-crafters.

I'm a 4th generation cross stitcher and I take great pride in that. Since I don't have much to show for in the way of hand-me-downs from my dear Aunt Lora, who passed away from brain cancer when I was 17, I wanted to share what she made. Mom gave this to me over the weekend. I often walked around the homes of all my "mothers" and was envious of all their earlier pieces, some childhood handwork and some that they created for others, especially those no longer with us. I'm going to cherish this piece no matter how juvenile it may be. It's vibrant, cheerful, in great condition, and it's something my Aunt Lora stitched for her sister, my mom.

As everyone knows, Aunt Pam and I are extremely close. She has a piece of needlework in her kitchen that she did at a very young age (possibly between 6-10 years of age) that I'd love to have one day. In fact, Aunt Pam has tons of giant samplers worked all throughout her home - amazing stuff! Unfortunately for me, Aunt Pam has a daughter (my cousin Kari) that will, more than likely, inherit these treasured pieces.

This is all my good news for now. We've had several severe thunderstorms over the last couple months and we'll continue to have more. Today was gorgeous and tomorrow shouldn't be too bad. It's been difficult to take good pictures with all this happening...Take care and Talk soon!

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

downton abbey

Another finish in my midst. It's really no big deal, but it counts.
It was a freebie by Tanya designed after a PBS production called "Downton Abbey." It was a fantastic series which I'd like to order on DVD at some point and re-watch.

Good news to share in an upcoming post...stay tuned...Talk soon!

Friday, April 8, 2011

i love a good mystery!

Don’t you?! Today I joined a club sponsored by Attic Needlework & Collectibles. And not just any club. A Mystery Sampler Club which will be sent in 3 portions over a 3 month period starting May 10. A photo of the sampler won’t be revealed until the 3rd and final portion is sent (oh the suspense!), but the fabric choices are terrific. I have chosen Lakeside Linen, 40 ct. Choice of threads are WDW or a conversion for silks, and since I don’t want to run out and collect 18 skeins of silk any time soon, I’m going to stick with WDW. This just works for me and it keeps the cost down.

The design is called “Birds of a Feather” by designer Brenda Gervais of Country Stitches / With Thy Needle & Thread. Jean Lea, from Attic Needlework & Collectibles, is extremely helpful and she creates a beautiful newsletter which I have also subscribed to. Jean's newsletter comes in a .pdf format so if you have trouble accessing the newsletter link I've provided, you can find it on her website under Newsletter - Here’s a sample of her recent newsletter – it’s fab-u-lous! But as of today, there's a new newsletter. Please subscribe AND sign up for the Mystery Sampler Club!

I also ordered "Feather Your Nest" cross stitch chart. It's so vibrant. That's it...Talk soon!

Thursday, April 7, 2011


Last Saturday night, Jose and I saw Andrew Lloyd Webber’s musical Cats. As a child, my parents took me to see these Jellicle Cats perform when we lived outside Chicago. I was a mere 9-12 years old (wow!). I remember it being just before Christmas - might have been Christmas Eve because I distinctly remember coming home and our Christmas morning was celebrated that night due to a trip back home to Cincinnati the very next morning. That evening with my parents is a fond memory of mine. I remember going into the city, catching a cab ride, seeing the musical, and even losing my blanket on the streets of Chicago. But dad convinced the cab driver to drive around the block to see where I had dropped it. In hopes we'd locate it. Luckily, it was still lying on the cold winter street waiting for my return.

I was engrossed by Cats. I learned that the stage was built at an incline so the performers could jump through the air and achieve their acrobatic maneuvers more easily, and as I remember the most about Cats, the stunning performance of Memory. Such a breathtakingly sad moment of the musical.

Now I have a new memory of Cats. I love musicals and I always enjoy the musicality and performance of such, but this time Cats was, well, kinda boring. I realize now that Cats has no plot. No story. Just a bunch of people dressed in cat-like costumes, pretending to lick and clean themselves and then bust out in song for no aparent reason at all. Albeit there were funny moments and entertaining parts that still caught my attention. The performance of Memory is still to die-for. Once again, it was a beautiful performance and still remains the highlight of the show. It’s still a wonderful memory for me and always will be.

The fondest memory of the evening was spending it with my well-groomed son (he does clean up well) and the company we kept. We all had a lot of much-needed fun!

[And thanks to mom for babysitting Cameron while I made a memory with Jose like the one they made with me – xoxo!]

Wednesday, April 6, 2011


Two must be my lucky number this week, but then I’m lucky to have finished anything at all. I managed to finish stitching 2 designs, both by The Sampler Girl.
My Everything by The Sampler Girl
I changed it up so it’ll suit my suitor. I took antique white linen and dyed it with taupe Rit dye. I used WDW Blue Topaz for the lettering and Perle Cotton for the heart. The turquoise batik fabric is being used for the back. My hope is for a hanging pillow. I have a leather-y type cord so it’s pretty masculine, I think. It’ll do.

Movie Night by The Sampler Girl
I started this in 2009 and got most of it stitched then. I used what I had on-hand so some threads were changed and I used a different linen color, but stayed with the same count. The popcorn buttons are adorable. They are by Just Another Button Company – had them forever too. It’s a wonder I was able to keep up with them for so long.

I recently decided that, although a stitching addict and it’s a sickness to start one project without finishing another (admit it, you are all guilty of this too), I’m going to attempt (ahem) to finish my past WIPS. But still continue with new projects. I mean, I have too much stash as it is and it’s only going to get worse grow so I might as well grab thy needle and start stitching. Sooooo, Movie Night was one of them and it's done! One down and onto the next “X.”

In the mail this week, came two new charts I ordered from none other than The Sampler Girl (maybe I have a thing for Tanya…hhhmmm).

The Beggar’s Purse Sampler, where I adore the brown color arrangement and the special stitches Tanya implements in this one. Plus, who doesn't like a sampler, right? Her newly released French Folio immediately caught my eye, with all the delicate pinks, whites and blues – very fresh and 'Gai Paris'. I can’t wait to stitch these up and decorate a spot in my home.

Also in the mail, came two of my quilting magazines that my Aunt Pam gifts to me with regular subscriptions.

Better Homes and Garden’s American Patchwork and Quilting and McCalls Quilting. Aunt Pam also provides me with Fons and Porter, but that one hasn’t arrived yet, and thankfully not, because it wouldn’t mesh well with this post, now would it?! I’m not the advanced quilter like my aunt. I’m more of a beginner and an itchy-wannabe quilter, even though I do know how to quilt, I still love my magazines. They are so inspiring if nothing else.

I may even come up with another finish this week. Don't hold your breath, but definitely keep your fingers crossed :D --- Here’s to hundreds more of two of everything…Talk soon!

Tuesday, April 5, 2011


If you are really loved, someone will gift you with one of these. But if you're really, really, really loved, then someone extra special will make one and gift it to you. No drooling allowed. I don't want my etui wet or

I spent Thanksgiving 2010 with my Aunt Pam and the rest of my mother's (my) family. While visiting one night, my aunt presented me with an unexpected gift bag. I was rather surprised, to say the least, but inside was this beautifully handmade, personally made-with-love for me, etui. I was in total shock and disbelief!

We both love the color blue so she was on the mark with her color choices. And as far as the etui itself, I was mesmerized by its detail and functionality. I really couldn't believe it was mine; still don't. It's such a special creation that even my mother has taken it with her to her guilds for show-n-tell and received many rave reviews (well, Aunt Pam has received the rave reviews). I've taken it to our LNS and again, mouths drop and mops come out to sop up the drool.

When I opened my gift and the etui fell open, as did my mouth, it reminded me of a bloomin' onion (without the smell, of course) and as such, Aunt Pam says, "Julie, when someone makes this for you, they really really really love you." And I know my Aunt Pam does. I love her too!

Talk soon!

Monday, April 4, 2011


I was off work today because Cameron was under the weather and so we hung out around the house. Even though Cameron wasn't feeling well he never loses his sense of humor or his need to show off!!!

After every pose Cameron would say "And this!" "And this..."
"And this!"

"And this!"

"Mommy, show me your face!" (How could I resist this child?)

"Good job, Mommy!" Cameron says ;-)

Friday, April 1, 2011

friday funny

Ha-Ha.....April Fool's Day!

Talk soon!