Wednesday, 27 January 2010

Going Visiting

Just to let you all know that I'm still around and life has got a whole lot less stressful this week. :0)

The situation with my DSis has been sorted and things are settling down again for her, thank goodness! I am also feeling much better too, as the bug seems to have run its course.... and the easing of the stress has also helped. The hot flushes and night sweats have dropped back to being manageable again too, so that is something else I'm grateful for. Those Angels really work some powerful mojo! :0)

DH and DS went to look at a car the other night and are back there this morning to give it a test run. If all goes well they should be able to pick it up tomorrow, so DS will have wheels once more. That will ease off the pressure from DH, as he's been taking DS to work each morning and picking him up most evenings too.

And the going visiting? I'm off to stay with my DSis for a few days so we can chill together......... and the first thing I'm going to do when I get there is give her a huge hug! LOL The last week may have been stressful for me but it has been a hell of a rollercoaster ride for her. Hopefully having her help me spend some of my DH's cash on some much-needed new shoes and some bits we need for the house will help towards getting her mind off the recent events and back to normal....... it'll certainly work for me. ROFL I will probably be back some time on Saturday. And who knows, I may even have some stitchy updates to share. :0)

Thank you for the very much appreciated well wishes. Hope you all enjoy the rest of the week and have a happy and fun-filled weekend. :0)

Sunday, 24 January 2010

Here She is Again

It's that time of the week again so it's time to show the latest update on Mother Earth. Unfortunately there's not a great lot of progress this time around as I've not been feeling too well all week and my DSis is having a crisis and is needing a lot of support while it gets sorted out.

So, without further ado, here She is:

In case you were wondering where exactly I've stitched: the tattoos on Her arm have been infilled; so have the confetti stitches up the side of it, as well as some of the ones up the side of Her chest; more of the area under Her arm has been done and a start made on the dress. Not huge progress...... but every little helps, as they say. :0)

You might guess that not much else stitching-wise has been done........ and you'd be right. LOL Sea Stars didn't get to come out to play and I haven't finished the Monthly Challenge piece or even started the Just Nan SAL piece. I'll get to them eventually.

I'll be going to stay with my DSis for a few days next week, when I should have (hopefully) shaken off this bug, to give her some more moral support. Mother Earth will be staying home, as it's too much hassle to take my magnifying lamp visiting too, but am trying to get a bit done on it before I go so there'll be an update to show next Sunday, as I should be back by then. I'll probably take Sea Stars and my Just Nan piece with me, in the hopes of getting at least a few stitches in. :0)

As for other news: my DS's classic Mini failed it's MOT big time earlier in the week, so is now off the road. It's uneconomical for him to fix it, so the hunt is on for another set of wheels.... it's pretty urgent too, as he needs to be mobile to be able to get out to work. Buses going out that way are few and far between and there's no one at work he could offer to car share with, as they all live in other areas, so it's going to be a combination of DH setting off earlier in the morning's to take him or DS paying for a taxi to take him in. DH went out with him today for a trawl round some of the local garages (car lots)...... and guess what they'll be doing next weekend too. Plus DS and his girlfriend broke up Saturday night, though it was mutually agreed to do so. Shame, as she was a nice lass, but if they're not suited then they're not suited.

The appointment with my herbalist on Saturday resulted in her suggesting that we've gone as far as we can with the herbs and that, at this point, I would benefit more from a course of acupuncture treatment to help with the menopause symptoms that are really starting to kick off now. I'm booked in for my first session in a couple of weeks time...... so I shall finally get to find out what a pincushion feels like! ROFL The Reiki session I had after my herbalist appointment was very gentle and really helped me to relax. I'm hoping Aureen will teach us a little about this at the Development Circle, as I'd love to be able to use the technique on myself and my loved ones when life throws out these curve balls. :0)

Meantime, I remind myself that though things are a tad stressful at the moment, life is a whole lot worse in other areas of the world..... and I count my Blessings once more and remember to do some of that positive thinking (thanks Julie :0) ).

Thank you for taking the time to visit and for leaving your kind comments. Hope you've all had a good weekend and that life is full of Blessings for you. :0)

Tuesday, 19 January 2010

Mother Earth Update

The update for the 2010 Weekly SAL Blog was posted on Sunday so I thought it was about time I posted a pic here too, just in case you didn't get to have a wander over there yet for a look-see. :0)

This time I concentrated mostly on filling in the skin areas, with the occasional foray into the annoying confetti stitching realm........ after a while those little white patches in the middle of all the colour get to bugging me enough to make me persevere and not mind all that tail-end thread weaving on the back. Weeeellll..... not quite so much. LOL The rainbow will have to keep its white patches for a while longer though because I just can't work out which of the two very similar symbols it's meant to be when the only difference is that one is a bit thicker than the other. Unfortunately that similar symbol thing has been a big issue with this chart, despite DH getting the pages enlarged to an unwieldy A3 size........ until that beloved magnifying lamp came into my life. It has proved to be a gem with that too. Yep, I can now see the difference between most of the similar symbols...... apart from the one on that flippin' rainbow! Now curious, as this is my first HAED so I don't have anything to compare it with: has anyone else had a similar problem with their HAED chart?

The old stitching mojo seems to have decided that, yes, it definitely is going to stay around for a while, so I've been taking full advantage of it. The Monthly Challenge piece has had a fair bit of attention lately..... though it doesn't seem to be growing that fast, despite this. That has been another pain in the butt chart too, overcome by sitting at the computer and looking at the online version and writing notes on my print-out as to what bit is supposed be stitched in which colour. It certainly reminded me as to why I waaaaaaayy prefer symbol charts! Oh, and this is another piece I can't show you all as it has to wait until Reveal Day. Sorry!

Are there any Ink Circle Designs fans out there who are thinking of stitching The Bramble and the Rose? Well, some of the girls over at the Ink Circle Stitchers Blog are going to be having a SAL with this one around March time. I say around because, by the sounds of it, they are all itching to get going and may just jump the gun a bit. LOL They say the more the merrier, so you'd be welcome to join in. I'm trying so hard to resist temptation with this one as I already have a few BAP's on the go......... but I can't help wondering if I might just have finished Sea Stars by then and have an empty scroll frame that will cry out for another project to go on it. ;0) ROFL

As for other things: the Panto is now finished so the chaps are around again - exit the peace and quiet and being boss of the TV remote every night.... right when I was getting used to being in charge of it too. LOL Still, it's worth the losses as it meant that two more panels of the flooring got layed last night. I am sure DH is trying to see just how long he can make this one job last..... and just how far my patience will go. Not too much further, I can tell you, as it was supposed to have been finished before Christmas. I want to start moving things into my new Craft Room and get everything organised NOW! Oops.... guess I'd better keep on working at that patience thing. ;0)

The Development Circle went well last week (have updated my other blog now) and I'm looking forward to tonight's session and seeing what's in store. DH will enjoy his night off and a half in the pub while I'm there. Hopefully I'll not be too tired to pick up Sea Stars after I get back - I need to get some stitches into it or Julie and Mr Stick will be on my case. :0)

Thank you for visiting and also for all the lovely comments you take the time to leave - they are very much appreciated. Hope you are all enjoying some serious stitchy time. :0)

Friday, 15 January 2010

Lousy Weather = Lots of Stitching

Well the worst of the snow may have thawed around here but the lousy weather continues with one lot of freezing rain earlier in the week (not pleasant), the occasional foggy session and now it's back to rain, rain and more rain, with a little added wind chill added to the mix, just in case we weren't already shivering in our shoes (which I am..... when I'm not having a temporary tropical moment LOL). I yearn to get out into my garden but it's just not feasible right now........ so what else is a girl to do when she's cooped up indoors? Well, what else but get one serious case of Stitch Ass, of course (thanks Siobhan - I love that phrase. LOL)

Bouquet for Cheryl is coming along nicely but I can't show an update until 5th February, so am afraid you'll just have to take my word for it for now. ;0) Then Mother Earth has had more of those little x's added too. Oh, what a blessing that bargain magnifying lamp has been! It sure has helped me get to grips with a lot more of that 1 over 1 stitching..... and it's great knowing that I can do it without worrying that I might go blind in the process. The next update for ME is Sunday, so it's another wait for that too.

What I can show you is my first stitching progress update of 2010 for Sea Stars, as it's grown enough to be worth showing a pic. A pic of how it looked before can be seen here and this is how it looks now:

Two small motifs added (one to the left and one to the right), a medium-sized motif to the right, another rainbow fish and a bit more added to the very large central motif. Doesn't look a great lot when you see it like this but some of those motifs do seem to need alot of stitching to them to make them grow. I almost succumbed to making a start on one of those fabulous seahorses, as I do love them, but made myself stop and save them for another time..... otherwise I'd want to keep going with them and finish up not get anything else stitched. :0)

Last night I cut my fabric for the Just Nan SAL piece and marked the centre. As the centre panel of the Angel's dress is 1 over 1 I decided to count up and start elsewhere on the over 2 areas....... but the Most Haunted Live programme proved too much of a distraction and there were miscounts galore. OK, did not want to start in the wrong place, so it got put away again rather than a start made. It will come out again soon though, as I need to get on with it before the end of this month. It'll be nice to have something new to show you all, too - don't want you to get bored with seeing the same pieces over and over again. LOL

No start made on this month's ornie for the continuing JA/S&S Forum's Monthly Christmas Ornie SAL yet but I have got a design picked out for this and it's a small one, so shouldn't take long to do. Am also cheating for this.... but I'll leave the how and what until it's finished and I've posted a pic so you can see for yourselves. LOL Oh, and guess I'd better do something about finishing off the ornies that I stitched at the back end of last year at some point too.
The JA/S&S Monthly Challenge piece is a non-starter so far too. I've now got the threads I needed, thanks to Sew & So, but the colour chart is defeating me..... so guess I'll have to pluck up some courage and stitch my own interpretation of it.

I shall have all of Saturday to myself this week, as DH and DS will be at the theatre all day: there are three performances through the day, then the Get Out in the evening (that's when they break down the set, remove everything and take it all back to the Guild Room to store). They'll be out just after 10am and I'll be lucky to see them again before 1am. The Panto seems to be doing well, as they've had a sell out/near sell out most nights. I haven't managed to see it yet: the best night for me to have gone was last night (Thursday) but by the time DH and I had had our shopping session at the local garden centre's Edinburgh Woollen Mills area I was shattered and on the verge of falling asleep in my chair. Whoda thought that buying clothes could be so tiring? LOL Still, I now have four tops, three cardigans, four zip-up fleeces and a pair of trousers to add to my very depleted wardrobe...... it'll be so nice to have a choice of clothes that actually fit! LOL So Saturday will more than likely see some boredom-busting stitching being done. ;0)

Have also been having a bit of a nosey through my stash, with a view to resurrecting the NAY Basket (Not Another Year) and getting a few more pieces kitted up ready for going in there. The trawl came up with a fab Halloween chart I'd forgotten I'd got (as you do LOL): A Spot of Halloween by Midnight Stitching. With kitting up in mind, I ordered a lovely piece of Pumpkin Patch fabric from Sparklies today....... and I have a feeling that this piece might just end up as my second new start (not counting smalls) of 2010. This year I will be organised!

Oh, and the Development Circle went ahead this week, thanks to the thaw, and it was good to see the girls again - though one of our number has had to drop out since I last attended, which is a shame. I shall get around to doing a write up on my other blog about that at some point soon, for those that are interested.

Well that's all for now, especially as my stitching is calling loudly. The blog reading/commenting catch-up is going well, with only a few more blogs still to be visited - so if you're still owed a visit I'll be by soon.

Thank you for visiting and for all the kind comments. Hope you all have a lovely weekend, whatever your plans are. :0)

Sunday, 10 January 2010

Cards Galore and Stitching Progress

Before the festivities I managed to have a bit of a cardmaking fest, spread over a few days as the stamina was only up for so much standing around. I made four Christmas Cards, some of which were sent out to Forum/Blogging friends. This one I sent to Lynn:

This one to Barb: 

This one to Sally:

This one to Karen, I think (sorry, brain fart moments are coming thick and fast, thanks to the menopause!):

Then there were a couple of birthday's too. Our friend Alex's birthday was on Christmas Eve, so I made a card for her and had great fun using one of my Celtic style stamps, embossing powder and peel-offs:

I made this card a while ago and the colours immediately made me think of Karen, so that's where it went off to earlier this month:

Unfortunately I forgot to take a pic of the birthday card I sent to Sally but you can see a pic here (scroll down a little).

I received some lovely handmade festive cards from family and friends too:

The large blue one was made by my DSis, the fairy card by my PenPal Maggie, Let it Snow card by Helen, the stitched card by Jayne (no blog) and the snow wording card at the front by our friend Alex. Aren't they all fab? BTW, you are getting a sneak peek of my new computer table in that pic. LOL

Next up is the promised update of the progress made on Mother Earth. This pic is where I got up to by last Sunday (3rd), ready for posting on the 2010 Weekly SAL Blog:

I've been stitching on her again since, so there's even more progress and, as I've already posted the update on the SAL Blog, I'll post another pic here too:

When I'm stitching this it can seem like there's not been much progress made..... then I look at the pics together like this and see the noticeable difference. As the Most Haunted Live 7-Night Special started last night (Saturday) it means I shall be parked in my armchair from 9pm every night to watch it..... which guarantees plenty of time to stitch some more on this and my other SAL pieces. :0) The timing of this Special is perfect, as DH and DS are going to be out most nights, as they are involved with the Pantomime production that starts at the theatre this week. Normally I'd have to listen to DS moaning about it being on...... now I won't. LOL

I made a start on the Bouquet for Cheryl SAL earlier in the week but I can't post an update yet, as the first posting date for that isn't until next month.... plenty of time to get a bit more done. In case you haven't had a mosey over there and seen a pic of  my choices for this already, I thought I'd post one here too:

Initially I was just going to use the top thread for this but once I got the chart printed out I changed my mind (it's allowed - I'm a woman! LOL). I've broken some stitching rules with this piece, as the top thread is a Thai silk and the lower one is a Carrie's cotton but the design immediately made me think of contrasts and I wanted the thread to reflect this. I'm doing this 1 over 1 on a 28ct fabric - unfortunately I'm not sure what fabric it is, as the label has disappeared. I'm really pleased with how it's stitching up so far.

I have yet to make a start on the Just Nan SAL piece but will get around to that soon. The Sew and So order I was waiting for (Floss-Away bags and some DMC) has arrived, so I can carry on with my thread sorting and make a start on the JA/S&S Challenge piece...... or at least I can if I can suss out the colour only chart enough to work out which thread I'm supposed to use for which bit, as my printer has made some of the colours much too similar!

I've had my trip to see my Herbalist and now have some new tablets and potion, though the diet is staying much the same. There's a more detailed post on that on my other blog, if you're interested. I was pleased to find that, despite my thinking otherwise, I hadn't put any weight on since my op, despite not being able to move around as much as usual, but had stayed the same. :0) Once this cold snap ends I shall start making a better effort towards getting to my next goal. Fingers and everything else crossed! :0)

If I haven't visited your blog recently I will be doing, as I'm slowly catching up. Some of you have been very chatty, as there were over 400 posts in my Bloglines! I've got down to around 300... but you can see there's a ways to go yet. LOL

Many thanks for visiting and taking the time to leave your lovely comments. Hope you are all staying safe and warm and getting lots of stitching done. :0)