Monday, April 7, 2014

Cherry Blossoms

Hello everyone!

It's been almost two weeks since I've posted and to tell you the truth, I don't have much to show today in the way of stitching.  I've been busy working on Meari's mailart and am almost finished it.  I made some decisions regarding the granny stripe and quilt.  Thank you all for your input and advice.  It's so nice to have others put in their opinions, based from experience, which helped me make an informed decision.  I decided to rip out the granny stripe and redo. Probably will restart this weekend now that there's been some time in between the ripping.  As for the quilt, I will stitch in the ditch for the main parts of the quilt, then hand quilt some sort of leafy, floral design on the red panels with red thread.  That way I will not be taking 8 years, ahem Barb!, to hand quilt my first quilt!! 

Titus trying to help me with quilting...not!

Unraveled yarn, ready for a new start

Pinned and ready to sew the red panels!
 
I made some minute progress on Magic Garden.  Dear Maggee hasn't been very well so I've been trying to put off the finish, which is fine since I have a gazillion other things to do!! I've also worked on JCS a bit and have contemplated starting Sarah Chapple.  I wanted to start her on Spring break but forgot! Oops! 

The peacock is finally DONE!

Magic Gate

My granny square has grown by 5 rounds.  It's taking longer and longer to do each round.  I'm hoping that I'll only have to do another 10 or so.  


Spring is special to all of us.  It brings the prettiest flowers and feelings of hope surging through us. In the Lower Mainland, we are quite blessed with a large number of cherry blossom and magnolia trees.  I tried my best to take photos of my favourite trees however, they didn't capture their true beauty.  Enjoy a few flower photos.

The cherry blossoms were taken at Burrard Station and the Magnolia tree at 22nd skytrain station at night.




The star Magnolia, so fragrant


I couldn't resist buying some pretty daffodils to cheer up the place.  They make me smile.  (I still have St. Patrick's day pillows up since I don't have any spring/Easter pillows!)



I'll leave you with some sleepy Titus photos. I resisted taking another Vampire Titus photo.  It's so funny how when he sleeps like that how much he looks like a vamp!




As for blogger issues, if there are anymore, I might just switch over to Wordpress...but we will see!!

Take care everyone

Anne

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

We Survived!

Well, it was a crazy, cold camping trip but we did it! My hubby wanted to stay another night but on the second night, I woke up mumbling/complaining about the cold and he heard me so we left the next day.  It was definitely an experience I'll remember...being freezing! I was like a lizard during the day following the sun, trying to get warm.  There was also no water there, which we didn't know about.  Luckily for us, there were some older campers who were very kind and gave us water from their warm motor homes. On the last day though, we had to use creek water, boiled of course, to sustain us until we got back into Sechelt.  The water was very clear and crisp yet one can't take risks and should always boil water in case of parasites.  I managed to get a fire going on the second night which is a small feat considering the damp woods all around us.  I found dry kindling and we sprinkled some fuel to get it going.  I was very proud of my spring fire! We made a good choice in leaving that day for the very next, the coast had a downpour of cold rain.  Phew!! 


The trip over to the Sunshine coast

Sunset at Porpoise Bay

Morning sun at the Estuary
Rising sun



Frosted seaweed




Sea Snake!!

Hairy trees
I didn't take as many pictures as I usually do since my hands were so cold!! Very thankful for warmth now :D

Stitching Stuff and Conundrums    

Since I've been back, I made some progress on my projects however, I'm feeling stuck on my granny stripe.  When reading the instructions for the granny stripe, I found another post of Lucy's stating that it would be good to make the chain loose or use a larger gauge for the starting chain. Hummmmm....that's not what I did and so now, my granny stripe has a slight curve from the chain.  I'm not sure what to do.  Do I rip all my progress out or hold onto hope that the curve will "straighten" itself out?  Calling all crocheters for help!!  It's hard to tell in the photo but there is a definite curve.



I think ripping it out would have to happen now instead of adding more then deciding to rip....it's just so hard to think about counting 240 chains again!! That gave me a headache!

Quilting conundrums...I pulled out my quilt and measured, cut, pinned and sewed the first border the other day.  The second border, which was going to be 4 inches, is now going to be larger in order to cover our bed.  I think I have enough fabric for the border and the back but even if I don't, I'll improvise.  My conundrum is whether to hand quilt or machine quilt.  Machine quilting would mean I could only go in straight lines, which would be okay, but boring.  Hand quilting would allow me to be more creative and do swirls and things....yet it would take an age especially with all my other projects on the go.  I know I'll make the right choice for me in the end however, I can't visualize it at this moment!! The putting the quilt together part is still a bit of a mystery to me...hopefully when I get to that point the mystery will be revealed!


The brown border

The red fabric which will be the border and the back
Stitching, oh how I love you! If problems arise, I always (usually!) know what to do.  Thankfully, with stitching, I haven't had any conundrums...just pure, wonderful stitching.  I am happy to say that all of my little packages arrived to their owners.  I crocheted a little mug cozy for Mouse as a thank you for the 123stitch GC.  These little cozies are so easy to hook up and send on their merry way.  


Photo borrowed from  Mouse!
The little BBD pincushion I stitched for Shirlee arrived safely too.  I stitched it on 40 ct. Linen using a mix of DMC and GAST threads.  It's from the Agnes Platt's Strawberry Sampler book.  It was a fun one to stitch with some specialty stitches sprinkled in for variety.


Photo borrowed from Shirlee although my watermark showed up??
My spring biscornu made it all the way to the UAE!! Sarah loved the package and we both enjoyed doing this private exchange together.  Again I had to borrow photos from her to show you...sigh...next time I'll remember!!





The biscornu design is a spring biscornu freebie from Ancsanaplo.  I used 28ct Baby blue lugana with a mixture of WDW, Dinky Dyes Silk and Carrie's Creations threads. I chose the colours to represent the beautiful tulips of spring. 

Before I sign off, I wanted to show the progress I've made on Knotgarden and...wait for it....TEA BATH FAIRY!! My hubby again said "Why don't you give her some love and stitch on her tonight?"  So I did.  I pulled her out and am slowly filling in all the baby pink in the cup before I complete it with that wonderful stuff called Kreinik...Not!!! You can probably barely tell any difference but there has been about 2-3 hours put in filling in that pink!





Oh, and I got my love birds finally framed.  It's not the best DIY framing job, but it will do.






I feel like I have more to say...I'm sorry if it's been too long of a post! 

I just want to say to all of those who have joined my blog, and to those that I wish to join their blogs...that I CAN'T.  Google/Blogger are at odds and so am I.  For whatever reason, I can no longer join blogs and this is actually a problem for a few people.  You can read about it here. I also don't have any blogs on my reader list for some reason.  When I click on the settings, all of you are there, but not in the feed part.  Feedly is back to working for me so I can add people there...just can't be an actual follower on blogs...very sad and irritating.  

Take care everyone and thank you for taking the time to read this post! I know it's a long one!!


Hugs

Anne

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Spring Break Brings Rain

Hello my lovelies!

This is a fly by post.  There's a break in the rain and it's sunny now.  We have been waiting for 3 days to go camping, my hubby's crazy idea.  Before I left I wanted to do a quick post of a few things that have been going on. 

First, thank you all for your lovely comments and the time you take to do so.  I have been so remiss to respond but I plan to when I get back.  Yesterday, I tried using Feedly to visit everyone's blogs but I hit a button that wiped out my blog post count! I was not to impressed and ended up shutting it down.  I'm trying to use my blog reader on the side to catch up with people since me and Feedly are not talking to each other for awhile.

I mailed out three little packages two weeks ago and only one has arrived, in England.  The one to the States and UAE has not arrived yet.  Hopefully this week.  I forgot to take photos of all three...sigh.  Hopefully the recipients will take photos! **wink wink** I started my granny stripe last night and it's more a curly pink mess than anything interesting as of yet.


I made a teensy bit of progress on Magic Garden.  I'm letting dear Maggee catch up! Plus the fence is taking awhile to stitch up.


I tackkled that pesky peacock and have been making headway.  I want to start on other motifs so I'm trying desperately to finish him.



Knotgarden's progress is abysmal yet progress is progress!!


I'm also starting another Spring/Easter mailart exchange with Meari. I've got the fabric and patterns picked out to start when I get back. Pretty excited to see how this one turns out! There's also another few Raks I want to stitch up, start Sarah Chapple, work on my quilt (snorts...yeah right!), and continue working on my granny stripe.  Hopefully all will get done by the time Spring Break ends! I am always hopeful!!

Take care everyone! I'll be back with some photos of our trip.  Hopefully we won't be too cold out there....crazy man!!





 
Hugs from me and Titus,

Anne

Monday, March 10, 2014

March Surprises Me

Bonjour mes amies!!

It's been too long since I've posted but I know everyone understands that I've been busy.  Reports are finished! YAHOOOOO!! I still need to add a few things here and there but they are finito. Huge waves of relief washed over me when I completed the last kid's report.  I had quite the past couple of weeks.  This reporting season was especially difficult for me for some reason.  Other teachers felt the same.  One gave me some good advice about saving my first, second and third term comments so I can use them for next year which will save me a lot of time and agony.  I'll take that advice! I also suffered a cold/lost my voice last week.  The kids said I sounded like Yoda and laughed at me. It was pretty funny to hear me, although my hubby told me to stop talking since he couldn't stand hearing it anymore!
Like Yoda I sound. Yes Hmmmm
I have a lot to share with you today so be prepared! There wasn't a whole lot of stitching done until this weekend so I only have two small things to share.  My Friday night SAL with Maggee has been going well.  I'm nearly finished Magic Garden! I can hardly wait! 



Although it's now March, I managed to finish LHN's February last night.  I think I've said this before but I need to plan my stitching a bit better! I'm always late with monthly themes...stitching them after the fact! I think I'll make this into a pillow since that's the easiest finish for me. 



It was stitched on 28 ct. Lambswool using CC threads that dear Cindy provided in the kit.  I by accident stitched the roof white but I like it! We had a lot of snow in February so it's a good reminder of the snow we've had!

After leaving the peacock for awhile, I picked him up again Sunday night and tackled him.  No frog came visiting me that night! Yay! 



Now for the best part of the post....all the wonderful packages that have been sent to me.  

I did a biscornu exchange with Sarah, from Sarah in Stitches and our theme was Spring. She sent mine a bit early because she has other exchanges to stitch and send out.  Hopefully mine will get to her in two weeks. Anyways, she sent me the most beautifully stitched biscornu and pretty monogrammed pillow, plus some mint tea from UAE, fabric and two VMS charts. I am a lucky gal! Thank you so much Sarah for such a wonderful package!Your biscornu is so sweet and finished beautifully. It made me very happy especially after the harrowing report card experience!! Hugs to you my dear!


Setting up for a photo and look who pops in and flops all over it?!
The pretty two-toned biscornu.


Front
Back
Hanging out with new biscornu friends
Tea, chart and fabric from UAE...the tea is amazing!
Sarah is such a sweet heart and I remember seeing her blog over a year ago and was one of her first few followers.  It's so nice to "meet" kindred spirits from around the world!!

The next surprise was from dearest Carol, Stitching Dreams.  She has told me she was going to lend me a chart I'd admired on her blog, but didn't tell me she was going to send something extra!! Boy was I surprised! She made me a beautiful pillow personlized to me! She stitched a little cat in the corner and made it look like Titus. We have become quite close friends over the years and I treasure her friendship.  Thank you my dear Carol! Your finishing skills are so admirable and very creative.


The sweet pillow and chart
Such a pretty design and I love the added button detail

Love those little spools of thread!

Little Titus!
I feel so spoiled by Sarah and Carol.  They have truly made my week, month! I mailed out a few packages last week and hope that my recipients receive them soon.  This Spring Break, which I'm itching for desperately, I hope to stitch a few more RAK's and do another mail art exchange with Meari.  So looking forward to catching up with everyone too.  I've been very remiss with blog commenting and posting.  But that's how life is and I now you all understand.  

Almost forgot to show my fabric and thread toss for Sarah Chapple.  I ordered it way back in January and it finally arrived. The R &R Rook 36 ct. linen is quite dark but I like it.  Hubby says he wants me to keep it since it's very army like and manly.  I had to laugh since the sampler is anything but manly!!  I'm going to start her properly during Spring Break.  


Beautiful silks and fabric
I'll finish with a few photos of our late spring.  We had some snow at the end of February which set back the flowers from blooming.  Now I'm starting to see some sprouting around.  Can't wait for more to come!


Snow berries

Some pretty pink flower bush on the river
Finally I spy a crocus!


The last of the snowdrops

That's all for now.  Titus and I are going to lie down in a sun beam and relax.

Hugs

Anne

PS Lent started and I have 5 more weeks to go without dairy and meat...sigh...