Tuesday, September 29, 2009

If you think your job is bad...

This was in my email Tuesday, and I had to pass it along.

When you have an 'I Hate My Job day' (even if you're retired, you sometimes have those days) try this out. Stop at your pharmacy and go to the thermometer section and purchase a rectal thermometer made by Johnson & Johnson.Be very sure you get this brand.

When you get home, lock your doors, draw the curtains and disconnect the phone so you will not be disturbed.Change into very comfortable clothing and sit in your favorite chair. Open the package and remove the thermometer. Now, carefully place it on a table or a surface so that it will not become chipped or broken.

Now the fun part begins.Take out the literature from the box and read it carefully. You will notice that in small print there is a statement: "Every Rectal Thermometer made by Johnson & Johnson is personally tested and then sanitized." Now, close your eyes and repeat out loud five times, ' I am so glad I do not work in the thermometer quality control department at
Johnson & Johnson.'


Guard dog at work

Here's Lester guarding his kingdom. Just so you know that he actually does move off that pillow sometimes.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Lazy Dog

I'm seriously considering entering Lester in a Laziest Dog in the World Contest, assuming I can find one. After our morning walk, which I know would probably disqualify him from the contest, he barely moves off his pillow in front of the TV until somebody pours more food in his bowl about 4:00 p.m. In fact, if you call his name, you should be very impressed if he even opens one eye to acknowledge your existence. Man, I love that dog.

More tweaking

Okay, I couldn't stand it. I changed the fish. Couldn't stand the darker blue fins which I originally thought would look better than an even lighter shade of blue than the main body blue . I WAS WRONG. They looked like they had happy faces painted on their sides and a patch over one eye. Had to go. And Faye reminded me that I had left off the stripes on the eel. So I had to go back to block 2 anyway. Not that it was all that far away. But in my head, it was complete. I told you I am a very serial stitcher. When something is done, it should be DONE. Now I'm about 30% done with block 5...lots of black and gray. Saving all the white for last. I hate stitching with white. It always looks like crap until it is washed and pressed. I'll probably drive myself crazy fiddling with individual stitches, but I'm determined to "enjoy the process". Remind me I said that when I start bitchin' about it later.

Friday, September 25, 2009


Well, I'm done with block two of "Shores of Hawk Run Hollow". It would have been done sooner, but a little tweaking of floss colors was required.

I'm sure you know how difficult it is to make conversions from one brand of fiber to another and maintain the original look of the project, not to mention your sanity. As I mentioned previously, I changed not only the floss, but the fabric also. So I'm having to exercise the right side of my brain and be a little creative. Unfortunately, that means frog stitching from time to time because what I thought would work, doesn't. I'm finding that the conversion made for color "x" may work in one motif, but not another, so I'm adjusting as I go along. All in all, it's working out, but taking a little more time than I'd like. I just have to tell myself to enjoy the process. And I am, except when I flick the needle across the room while frog stitching.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Stitching Wish List

I've been meaning to post this for a while, but it kinda slipped my mind. Some time ago a Facebook friend of mine posted a photo album containing pics of the projects on her stitching wish list. I thought it was a great idea and I decided to share some of mine with you.

Now the "wish list" is not to be confused with the "IN basket", which consists of projects I actually have a plan to do within the near future. Some are even kitted up. Now I know some of you are saying, "So what?". Well, I don't kit my projects up until I'm ready to work on them. I hate to duplicate materials (floss) and I really hate to go looking through kitted projects for something I need right now. Hence the pile of charts in the "IN basket" ready to be kitted. Do I sound really anal? How very perceptive of you.

The wish list consists of designs that I fully intend to do sometime in my ever shortening life, but for which I have no immediate plan. Some of you may not recognize some of these charts because you may not have been born when I bought them, but some of my favorite designs are classics. (Laura, you know which ones I'm talking about.) I will try to be as complete as I can (off the top of my head) with details about titles and designers, but I am not currently sitting in my library. So bear with me. Oh, and these are in no particular order.

"Virtue Outshines the Stars"
Needles of Prayse
Darlene O'Steen "Le Jardin de Plaisir"
Long Dog Samplers"Spanish Bleu"
Sampler Cove"Read Between the Lines"
Blue Ribbon Designs

Monday, September 21, 2009

A New Start

Happy Monday morning to ya. I can say that now that I've had my pot of coffee and it's almost noon. I am not a morning person. In fact, if I had my druthers, I'd shift my schedule about 3 hours later than normal.

Last night I got on a roll, stitching-wise, and told DH not to wait for me to come to bed. I actually finished the first block of "Shores of Hawk Run Hollow", hereafter referred to as SoHRH.

As you can see, I changed the fabric. I'm using 40 count "Lucky Penny" from R&R. I'm also using Anchor floss. As I mentioned last week, I spent the better part of a morning making then floss conversion, but so far, I think it's working. I may decide to backstitch the lighthouse at some later date, but I'm going to wait until I get more blocks done to see if I really need to. I detest backstitching.

I slept in til 8:10 this morning and have already done more productive stuff than I have in a week. So, at least until Christmas, I'll probably do the night owl thing. I am sooooooo in the Christmas stitching panic.

Friday, September 18, 2009

Fabulous Friday

Well, it's Friday again...already. Where does the week go?

I have been stitching on my new project, "Shores of Hawk Run Hollow", but don't have much done yet. So no pics. But I thought I'd share some more of my Etsy favorites with you. And in case these are enough for you, I have more on my Etsy Favs mini on the right side of my blog. Just keep scrolling til you see it. I find great new stuff all the time.

This hot and cold pack Mouse Keyboard support from theferriswheels is just what all us computer junkies need!

And finally, for those who REALLY spoil their pups, Pumpkin flavored dog cookies from BuckarooBones

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Ta Da!

Band Sampler I by Pat Taff of Golden Thread Designs is FINI! Woohoo! And I must say, I do love it. I x'd out the recipient's name, just in case she sees this post. I hope she likes it as much as I do. Not really worried though. We tend to have the same taste in needlework. By the way, I found the original design date on this sampler...1992. So if you're looking for it, you may have to dig pretty deeply.
And now, I 'm on to a new project. I spent the morning adjusting thread colors since I changed the fabric color. But I'm optimistic that there won't be many mid-stream changes. So, until next time...enjoy.

Monday, September 14, 2009


Back in early August I told you about meeting an on-line friend in person. We hit it off like we'd known each other for years. Sharing a passion for needlework tends to do that.

Well, Faye came to my stitching group for a couple of weeks while she was in the area on vacation. And to my surprise, she presented me with a precious little sampler that she stitched "over the weekend". I was so surprised I almost cried. It was a true random act of kindness from someone I'd only known for a week. I was truly touched. But she probably thinks I'm an ungrateful wench because I didn't show it off to all of you right away. I had a good reason...really. I wanted to show it to you after I'd decided how to utilize it. And since finishing is something I really have to psyche myself up for, it's taken almost 6 weeks to complete the project.

I decided to made a stitcher's pocket or pouch or whatever you want to call it. I found a beautiful batik and a companion fabric in my LNS, Angelwing Needlearts and I went to work. Now, you have to understand that when I use my sewing machine for anything other than zigzagging the edge of my linen I generally do at least one thing backwards. This was no exception. I won't bore you with the details, but suffice it to say that bad words were uttered and blood was shed. But it turned out almost perfect.

I attached the sampler to the outside back as a pocket and button hole stitched around the edge, but it's not as clean as I'd like it. So I made take it off and redo it (not today). There are also two inside pockets. It folds into thirds. The little sampler on the front flap is actually painted on a small chip of wood and has a pin back on it. I've had it for years and finally found a way to show it off too. The button loop is buttonhole stitches done in black pearl cotton. I purposely made it a little big because I have a habit of over-stuffing these little pouches.

So, now I have a constant reminder of Faye and that instant friendship IS possible. Thank you, Faye.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

It's getting close...

I get so involved with stitching on this piece that I forget to take pictures and post about it. I looked at the last picture I posted and I've done a lot of work since last Tuesday!
I hope to be done by the middle of the week, because...wait for it. I'm anxious to start my next project. All you multi-taskers out there just rotate between projects. I wish I could, but it makes my brain hurt. So I have to finish one before I start another. Doesn't mean I don't have a gazillion lined up to start, but sometimes being left-brained is annoying.
Here's a close up view of top bands which are so pale that you can hardly see them in the picture of the full sampler. And the bottom band as I left it last night. Actually, there's a personalization band to follow, but that doesn't really count.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Did I tell you?

I've added beaded bookmarks to my Etsy shop! I have some shepherd's crook style and book thongs. They're fun and functional. A teacher friend of mine suggested the book thongs and she should know. She and her boys are avid readers and they even beta tested them for me. I was holding my breath til I heard from them. Fortunately, they like the slightly heavier cord that I use and the color combinations worked too. Here are a few examples.

Peach and Pearl Book Thong

Red and Black Shepherd's Crook

Purple and Silver Book Thong

Turquoise Crook

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Now I've really done it.

I've been making coordinating scissor fobs and counting pins for a while. Well, now I've matched a scissor fob (pins, too) to a set of stitch markers for knitting. Don't know why I didn't think of it earlier. Knitters use scissors too.

Monday, September 7, 2009

I'm really cooking now

DH and I spent the weekend at my mom's so I didn't spend a lot of time on the computer. Boy, did I miss reading all the blogs I follow. Hope I didn't miss anything earth shattering. I'll try to catch up, but you know how it is.

Anyway, I did get some stitching done thanks to DH. I forgot my Ott lite and he saw me struggling to stitch under a floor lamp with a 40 watt bulb! What a nightmare that was. So he went over to Lowe's and got an Ott lite bulb for the lamp. Wow, what a difference. Then I stitched all the way home in the car. However, 3 hours of car stitching equals about 2 hours of couch stitching. I-95 in SC desperately needs repaving! I should email the DOT and tell them they are causing me stitching distress. Do you think they'd listen?

So I'm down to the last major band and it's a biggie. All the vine pieces are done in rice stitches, which I enjoy. The flowers, which I haven't done yet, are various other stitches.

These 4 bands were just chock full of fun stitches. The large flowers are satin and cross stitches. The acorns are palestrina knots (ych) and satin stitch. The bottom row of flowers are queen stitches.

So I should be done in about a week. I need to spend some time on my scissor fobs and counting pins, but I'd rather stitch.

Saturday, September 5, 2009

Great Hardanger tutorial

Hardanger has what I call a huge "Oh, Wow"! factor. It's one of my favorite forms of needlework, probably because it's logical and symmetrical. Yes, I'm very left-brained. LOL. I love to teach it, but teaching someone how to read the diagrams is the most important part since there are so many filling stitches that no one can actually memorize all of them. And, as I'm fond of telling anyone I teach, "I'm not going home with you".

I get the Nordic Needle email newsletter every Monday morning. Recently Roz posted a great tutorial on hardanger. Since this is one of my needlework favorites I'm always thrilled when I can convince someone that it isn't as hard as it looks. The link provided is for this specific archived newsletter, so if you don't get the newsletter regularly be sure to sign up for it and check the rest of the archives. There is some wonderful stuff there.

Happy Stitching!

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Etsy Goes Wolfpack!

I was just browsing the Treasuries on Etsy and came across this one which just made me smile. NCSU Wolfpack rules.!

Back to Band Sampler I

Well, I've had a bunch of other stuff to do lately, but I'm back to working on Band Sampler I. Do you have stitches you love and stitches you hate? I'm pretty sure we all do. I've had a little of both so far on this piece. I'm not a big fan of knots of any kind because it's so hard to make them consistent in appearance. The acorn tops are Palestrina knots which are easier than some others, but I still do not enjoy them. And I NEVER look at them under the magnifier. It just makes me want to rip them out. However, I absolutely love Queen stitches! Once I figured out that the key to a beautiful Queen stitch is pulling each leg snugly I was hooked. Eileen Bennett (The Sampler House) is the only instructor/designer that has ever given that tip, as far as I know, and I will be forever grateful to her.