Sunday, July 31, 2011

PROGRESS: a finish or two, a small start, a big start!!

My big start...the Birds of a Feather Mystery Sampler by With my needle. Here is my favorite part so far...I am doing it in silks and I must say, I am loving this sampler. I had some linen in my stash that I pulled Lakeside Linens "Lentil"'s not quite as grey as called for, a little more brown; but I do love it. I had mentioned to one of my friends that I was going to figure out how to do cardinals versus the blue birds. I have much more reds than blue in my house so I wanted to change it up.
But as you can see, I have a long way to go before I hit that section...and now I have seen a couple blogs where they changed the birds to cardinals, so I have a picture to help guide me along. I may also change the color of the letters, but I am not sure to what color. I have all three parts now, so I will do some other parts and see if I want to keep the letters the charted color (converted to silks) or change it up. Don't you just love this!!

My little start...This sweet (pardon the pun) little pillow thingie by La-D-Da. It's called In The Sweet and came as a kit with the backing fabric and ready-made binding. It truly is SWEET!! It's working up really fast and has been quite an easy stitch; especially when I want something that's easy.

Working away on the Blackbird Designs Merry Christmas Ella Vaughn that I started with intentions to complete in time for the Sampler Guild challenge I have mentioned before. I couldn't decide between this one and the one further in this I was going to do two - we had a year, I could do that! Then my year took a downturn for medical issues (also mentioned before and I will update in a minute). I did complete one...keep reading. This one has been fun and I am not even minding the border - usually that's my least favorite part; how about you? I love the house color and the pine tree and the moon...and well, all of it! I am going to put something in the snow different than patterned, to make it my own...but I don't know what, so it hasn't been graphed, nary a flake stitched at this point.

This is my little finish - yet to be finished-finished. It will be sooooo cute on my tree this year and it seems to be an easy finish-finish...just have to motivate myself and get the confidence in my finishing. Is anyone else like that? I like to do the stitching, the piecing of a quilt; but then it comes to finishing a project/framing a project or binding a quilt and I drag my feet. I guess maybe the more I do, the better I will get, the more I will like it - or there could be a lotto win and I can pay people to finish the basket full - and I mean full of stitching in my sewing room! Anyway, before my digression, this is Under the Mistletoe by Island Cottage NeedleArts.

I did finish one of the two things I started (the other BlackBird Designs mentioned above). This is My Missouri Home and I did alter it. I put "our home" with our last name in the grass. Over one in the roof are the initials of myself, my husband and my son. I will be making both of these BBD into pillows for a bench I change up with the seasons in my family room. Ahhh, into the finish-finish basket...

The little key charm on the right is what we received from the guild for a finish of the challenge piece. I wasn't at the meeting and didn't get to see what everyone brought and stitched, all personalized or not. I hope to make the meeting in August, I miss the creativity of that group.

So that's the stitching updates I have thus far. I have been able to stitch quite a bit and have really been making good progress now that I am feeling a bit better. Health update - so if you want to tune out, thanks for stopping by - I am making progress in that area too! I am feeling better, still having some pain while sleeping so that's not going so well yet, but it is getting better. I can drive, locally. I have graduated (or discharged, but the word graduation sounds much more fun) from occupational therapy. Physical therapy is still something that I am doing through August and then we will see. I have been able to not use the walker, using the cane now. I have been cleared to go back to work after Labor Day. While that makes me feel great on one hand, I will miss seeing my friends as much since I won't have any time off for a bit while I get caught up and build the PTO (paid time off) back up to something.

We've had a bit of rain here in Michigan - but it is still humid. You won't hear me complain about the cold or snow...but humidity - YUCK! I do like the sun but we have that in the winter too. And soon it will be my very favorite...autumn, when it's crisp and beautiful!

Heard this on t.v. today...can't even tell you where or on what show (it was about a musician which with I am unfamiliar), but I liked what the message said! She said to remember these ten, two letter words and instill into making things happen: If it is to be, it is up to me!

Thanks so much for taking the time to check into what's been going on in my stitching world, my health world - just my world! I appreciate all of the devoted readers, the new readers...and I read and love receiving each and every comment - even if I don't comment back - sometimes it's a time thing. Thanks for all the continued well wishes for my health improvement - they help! I check out your blogs too if they're not on my blog stalking/visiting list to the side...

Take time to stitch, take time to do what makes you smile!!

Sherry :o)

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Wet - Finally!

It's been raining off and on since yesterday afternoon. I was going to take some updated stitching pictures yesterday and was thwarted by the clouds and rain. Again today, it is going to be watch for pictures over the weekend! Believe me, I am not complaining about the rain - it is needed! Didn't do much for the humidity here, although we have a slight break from the heat. I, for one, am longing for the autumn weather....and maybe the snow. I am sure I will be a little nervous walking in the snow with all the issues I've had this year, can't fall! (Not that I make habit of that).

Thanks for all the well wishes and encouragement on my recovery/rehab from surgery. I have graduated (or have been kicked out, since there is no graduation party) from occupational therapy. I still am working with the physical therapists though - it's slow, but steady. Many things are returning to normal at home: sleeping in my own bed on the second level of our house, being able to stand long enough to help with dinner, baking a bit (though my weight doesn't need that), shower without aid of shower chair, ditching the walker for a cane, etc. And now that I am able and unrestricted on stairs, I have been helping with the laundry a bit and hope, HOPE to get in front of the sewing machine to work on a quilt that was in progress for my niece last Christmas. She wanted her turn last year even though she knew it would be Feb/Mar before she received it - then the back/virus issues happened and it is as it was in January. I would love to get it together before I return to work....that way it can be quilted and I will only have to do the binding. I only have two squares put together, I think, so I will put some pics up with the stitching pics when I check out where I left off. It's a Turning Twenty pattern with bright batiks - delicious!!!

Take care and hope this mid-week post finds all happy and stitching or doing whatever makes you happy!


Thursday, July 21, 2011

Wicked! Just Plain Wicked!

What's up with the title....well it's wicked HOT here in Michigan! I am a cold weather lover so this heat is not up my alley at all. Thank goodness we have air conditioning. Not much going on around here; still working on therapy to help gain strength in the back/abdomen/core muscles and am actually "graduating" from occupational therapy next week.

I have been stitching up a little storm. I don't have pictures, unfortunately, at this time since it is for a Christmas present and there are a few in the gift exchange group that read my blog and it's a secret!! And it is not finish-finished. I will post once gifted.

I am going to work on non-present stitching today and will post progress pictures in the next few days or so. I think today, with the wicked hot weather, I will work on a the snowman ornament in the previous you think it will aid in a cool down?

I also am anxious to get more done on my Birds Of A Feather by With Thy Needle &'s the mystery sampler on so many of the blogs in my blogroll and others, I'm sure. It is a wicked fun stitch and I am really enjoying it thus far, even though I am just on the border.

I have been reading some too. If you are a reader, check out these:

  • Secret Garden by Sarah Addison Allen (really good, easy read)

  • Die For You by Lisa Unger

  • Heart Full of Lies by Ann Rule (based on true crime - wicked good)

  • Water for Elephants by Sara Gruen (also really a movie too - haven't seen, it's on my list)

  • The Host by Stephanie Meyer (author of the Twilight series) It is an awesome book - loved it!

  • By Kate Jacobs - loved all of them. I read Comfort Food first and really liked it, then I read the knit series: The Friday Night Knitting Season, Knit Two and Knit the Season

  • Bone By Bone by Carol O'Connell (super book, a must read in my opinion)

What am I currently sticking my nose into? The Shack by William P.'s a read that is very though provoking. I am almost done and then who knows what is next...the stacks are tall.

Thanks for being a follower, stalker, occasional reader...comments are appreciated. It's kinda cool to know people actually are interested in what I have to type. I did have a follower drop off - thought that would bother me a bit, but not so much. I do wonder why...

No matter where you are, I hope your weather is great, you needle is threaded and you enjoy each stitch!
Sherry :o)

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Finally - some stitching....Really!

I can stitch!! I can sit in a chair, concentrate and stitch - FINALLY. I have my stitching cravings back!! I am still not allowed to drive, can't stand at the counter for a long time, can't sit in my kitchen counter stools or the dining room chairs, am still going to physical and occupational therapy, but I can sit in a chair to stitch. I have been reading quite a bit too...(more on that later, after stitch news). Daytime t.v. is not the best thing in the world but... I'll fill you in on how my recovery is going at the end; that way if you only want to check out the stitching progress you can skip the chattering. So on to what this blog is first and far most about:

I picked up this cutie - started it yesterday. It is an easy stitch as most of the time I stitch on 36 or 40 count. This is 28 or 32 count (I took the fabric out of my stash). Cute! Oops - had to take out the pic...forgot that it's for a Christmas goodie and who knows, she may read my blog. I will do some posting of this in a few months and it will be finished! Sorry about that - can't do a pic at this time....but there are more - keep reading!

Then I have this. I tell you, I have been thinking of this one so much that I had dreams of it for two nights before it arrived in the mail. I hope the mailman didn't think I was stalking him as I waited by the mailbox for several days in a row; yep, there I was, walker and all... In my dream, I saw myself stitching it, feeling the silks and the linen! Is that crazy or what? It's the Birds of a Feather by With Thy Needle & Thread. And you probably can't see that much of the border as it's close to the linen color but with the flower below, it did pop out more. I am not sure I will do the letters in that color, as charted; will have to play a bit. And by the time I get to the letters, part III will be out and I will see what other colors I want to enhance or emphasize. This one has me wanting to get all the chores done (although mine are still limited) and stitch until my body can't sit a moment longer and my mind can't think any longer.

Remember the Kindred Spirits Sampler Guild BBD challenge I babbled a bit earlier in a post or two about the was to do one of the Remember Me Series to be shown at the July meeting. I couldn't choose between Ella Vaughn or My Missouri Home. Before all my medical/illness issues, I was positive I could get two done. I am making them into pillows for my bench in our family room. Well with my time-out (not self imposed, you can bet your bitty on that) I knew that it wasn't possible. I didn't get the Ella Vaughn done. I am not sure what I am going to put in the snow, to personalize it for my family. But I do have quite a bit of it done. Don't you love the pine tree? I also loved the snow flakes!

This one is My Missouri Home that I personalized with initials of myself, husband and son in the roof (over one, to make them blend in and not stand out). I put our last name in the grass with the words "Our Home". I love the strawberries in this one - that's why I just had to do it! I am a strawberry gal, there's no doubt about that!!!

Sorry for the wrinkles - the iron is upstairs and I have not been cleared to do stairs without assistance, so my time in the sewing studio is quite limited...and it was going to be folded/rolled and sent with my friend, Paulette, to KSSG since I will miss yet again another meeting. Thanks Paulette for taking it for me to show off. I am sad I won't see all the other pieces from the talented members, the way they personalize them for their family...but then again, it will certainly cut down on the "I gotta stitch this now" feeling by not seeing the other seven in person!

I thought this is very, very sweet! I only have the snowman done so far. I did his head three times when I was hanging with some of my friends a few days ago. I am now able to move about a bit and my friends were getting together not too far from where I had therapy later in the day, sooooo some of my friends drove me there, then another took me to therapy and my sister works near there - she picked me up and brought me home. It was great to hang out and laugh! Boy was I tired, very tired! My endurance sucks...but it is better each week. Anyway - this is so adorable and I think I will be so cute on the tree, or somewhere like the mantle. It came with the red wool fabric, the fabric for the back and a rusty bell. It's by Island Cottage Needlearts and is called Under the Mistletoe. Can you say ADORABLE!! Well, that's about all I have for needle/stitchy updates. I have been post-surgery for over two months now. I really thought I would be walking with a cane, if not on my own. I have taken a few very shaky steps on my own (with supervision, mind you). I really thought I'd be back to don't get me wrong, I am enjoying hanging with friends and stitching and laughing, I am enjoying being home bit more with my guys - but I miss the routine of work, I miss $$$ too! I want to feel better and sleep without pain, but I am thankful that I am walking and able to function as I should. I realize when you have spine surgery and with the virus I had on my spine, it takes time. Maybe this is a test of my patience by God...well I am ready to say, I get the lesson - alright, all ready....

Thanks for sticking with me while I was absent and not posting. Thanks for the comments about my graduate (my chest is still full of pride)!! and for the comments about my health. I do appreciate and love that people read all about the thoughts that bang around in my mind. So until the next update: stitch happy, stitch lots and smile...



Friday, July 1, 2011

Happy Independence Day - America!!

Happy Independence Day to my U.S. friends....hope whatever you choose to do to celebrate the weekend is fun, safe and in beautiful weather!! We are laying low in my house. My son was away all week with Young Neighbors In Action - on a mission trip with our church in Detroit. I plan on taking it easy as I am still not doing nearly 100%. Yesterday was the two month mark from my surgery - sure is taking a long time to get my own self back.

Happy Canada Day to our neighbors!! Ditto on the safe, fun and beautiful weather weekend to you too!

Spent some time stitching yesterday with friends - what a great afternoon it was. I will post pictures soon.

Enjoy!! Stitches and Hugs,