Friday, 30 April 2010

Beltane Blessings and a Giveaway

Beltane Blessings to one and all.... or Happy May Day for tomorrow, if you prefer. :0)


To spread a little happiness at this lovely time of year...... I thought it would be nice to do another little giveaway. :0)

I know there are a few folks who love fairy and Angel designs out there, so I thought I'd offer a little something that might just appeal.

This kit is Lily Maiden and was designed by Teresa Wentzler.... not sure if it's still available (the TW website says: not). I love fairy and Angel pieces and TW designs... but there are quite a few other kits and charts in my stash already that I want to stitch more than this one. Thought it was best to let it go to someone who will actually get around to stitching it soon. :0)

If you would like to enter the giveaway just leave a comment on this post. Mentioning this giveaway on your blog isn't a stipulation on entering but it would be appreciated, to generate some more interest/entries and make it more fun. Names will be placed in the Crystal Chalice of Fortune, ready to be drawn the weekend of the 8th/9th of May and the winner's name will be posted either Sunday or Monday.

Hope you all have a lovely weekend, whatever your plans. Good Luck if you decide to enter the giveaway. :0)

Monday, 26 April 2010

Not a Lot....

to share with you all this week, at least stitchy wise. You might be relieved to realise that there's no update pic of Mother Earth to show - between stitching on the tiger, spending some time in the garden, a weekend on a course and general tiredness (stitching + tiredness = frogging) resulting in early bedtimes I just didn't get around to picking Her up even once. Never mind, I shall make sure I spend at least one night putting a few stitches into that background this week.

There is an update on the tiger to show though, so at least there's something stitchy-wise to share. LOL Here's where he's at now:

Can you make out the start of an ear? He doesn't seem to grow very fast and I guess that's because there are quite a few colour changes. At least I've managed to get it up to the top edge of the design, so I can now work outwards each side, then down. I'll be putting a bit more time in on him this week, to make sure he grows much faster..... G needs him in her home asap.

Other news to share: well I've now had three solo drives in my car. :0) The first drive was just down to a local supermarket and back... but it involved driving down the local High Street and ended up a bit of a baptism of fire. There were cars and vans parked where they weren't supposed to be, with buses and lorries trying to drive round them, as well as other cars, plus buses coming up the street... and, just to make it even more interesting, kamikaze pedestrians leaping out all over the place. I didn't get out of second gear all the way down.... which suited me fine. LOL A steady wander round the supermarket for the shopping calmed me down enough to attempt the journey back up the street...... I had contemplated a detour to avoid it but I could hear my DS's voice calling me a wuss, should I fess up to that, so decided I wouldn't give him the opportunity. LOL Thankfully the journey back was way better.

The other solo drives involved journeys out to a local village and back, where I went to attend a Healing Course. The journey on Saturday had me passing a nasty accident that had happened just minutes before I got up there.... very nerve-wracking. I did debate stopping to help but there were plenty of folks around who already had, some on mobile phones calling the emergency services, so thought the best thing was to carry on and not clutter the road up anymore than it already was. So hope no one was seriously injured. I was shaking a tad by the time I arrived at my destination..... one of the ladies gave me healing, which calmed me down nicely. Sunday's journey was uneventful and much quieter....... I like Sunday driving. LOL  :0)

The course is proving interesting and is already having some positive effects. It's involved a lot of meditations and what the chap taking the course calls activations, which are designed to help us start channelling the healing energy. There's been the opportunity to use self-healing techniques and healing on others. My first hands-on experience (literally) was on W, the chap giving the course. Afterwards I asked if it had been OK (what I meant was: did I do it right?) and he boosted my confidence no end when he told me I was a natural and described what he'd felt and seen whilst I was treating him. It's also good to interact with the other participants outside of the Clinic and Development Circle setting. Next weekend I've been asked to take my drum and Tibetan Singing Bowl with me.... not sure yet what we'll be doing with those but it'll be fun to find out. LOL

Last week DS and I had a couple of sorting out sessions (another reason for the lack of stitching time). The first was in the caravan and resulted in a few things going in the bin, a few others being taken out to store elsewhere... and a pile of stuff within the caravan that we are keeping but need to work out where it's going to be stored before bringing it in, as we want to avoid having piles of stuff plonked all over the place that's to go away "when we get around to it".

The other sort out session was in the old air raid shelter in the back garden, that is currently used as storage (remember the door to the Secret Garden pic of it? LOL). More stuff for the bin (which is pretty full now), a bag of scrap tins and cans went into the recycling box, another bag of scrap metal bits went to the scrap skip at DS's work on Friday.... along with a bag full of rubbish that went in their rubbish skip. The BBQ charcoal was rescued and put into proper tubs, to keep it dry, the place swept out and everything that we decided to keep went back in tidily. You can now go in there and not fall over stuff... and actually find whatever you want. Roll on to when we can give DH's workshop the same treatment! LOL

DH has treated himself to a new lawnmower and christened it by giving the lawn its first cut of the season. The old lawnmower will be Freegle'd this week, so we don't end up with even more unwanted stuff cluttering up the place. Hopefully the caravan clear out/putting away session will continue too. Last week DH also managed to find the time to go to the office furniture place to get replacements for those three damaged shelves, plus the screw fittings we were short of, so that's no longer holding up the job. :0)

Rehearsals for Blackadder are picking up now, so DH and DS are disappearing off to those a little more regularly. The performance is in May and I really want to go and see it, so...... despite the fact that I won't have anyone to sit with, have decided I'm going to go anyway. I can drive myself there and back (DH and DS will be going far too early for me to go with them) and sit in an aisle seat, so I don't feel hemmed in by all those people - that will be a test to see how far I've come from being that panic attack ridden agoraphobic. LOL If it does prove too much I can soon pop out for some fresh air from an aisle seat without causing too much of a disturbance. Wish me Luck. :0)

Thank you for visiting and for the kind comments. Hope you all had a good weekend and a pleasant start to the week. :0)

Monday, 19 April 2010

The Winner, the Usual.... and Something New!

The names of those who entered the Giveaway went in to the Crystal Chalice of Fortune today, as I got back from my DSis's too late to do it Sunday night. My DS was  pressganged made the selection:

to reveal the winner as...........

Congratulations Cath. Please can you email me with your postal details and I'll get the package organised and into the post to you. :0)

I shall run another giveaway before too much longer, so keep your eyes peeled. :0)

Another Sunday has been and gone which means it's time for the usual Mother Earth update:

More infilling on the sky and it has some really pretty colours in there. Unfortunately there hasn't been huge progress made..... but I do have a good reason for it.

At my last Development Circle meeting one of the other participants, G, shared the news that she'd just been told that her DH's cancer is now terminal. All the ladies that go to the Circle are lovely people but G is one of those warm-hearted, caring individuals that you instantly warm to and feel like you've been friends with forever.... and, having lost family members to cancer, it was really upsetting to know what she's going to face in the coming months. I wouldn't wish that on anyone. After recently discovering that one of her Power Animal's is a tiger, she expressed the feeling that it was there to give her courage.... I thought that a picture of one would be a constant reminder to her of that courage, so instantly decided to stitch a piece for her. Oddly enough I had the perfect design in my stash: Tiger from the Janlynn Wildlife series, by Roger W Reinardy. So sharing my stitching time between ME and the Tiger means that ME will be growing at a slightly slower rate to usual until the tiger is finished. Here's the start I made:

I swapped the white 14ct aida (supplied in the kit) for that gorgeous Sugar Maple Pumpkin Patch fabric.... I thought it had the look of jungle about it, giving the right effect for the design. Can you tell that's an eye taking shape? Am glad to say that it's proving to be a nice piece to stitch. Good job really, as it would be nice to get it completed and given to G before too much longer. :0) 

As for other things: last week had a little excitement in it, as DS and DH both managed to sell their old cars on the same day! DS was very happy to make almost as much as he was asking for it.... and the Mini was going to a young chap who was going to spend time doing it up, as he was obviously a Mini enthusiast. The Tank went to a chap who was going to be using it off road.... so it will go from being a rock-steady towing vehicle and a general workhorse, to being a true 4x4. It is so good to get the front cleared and looking a little less like a scrap vehicle yard. LOL On Saturday DS and I gave the caravan's exterior a good wash, in preparation for putting it up for sale too. Someone who saw us washing it has already made enquiries about it, so we need to get the rest of it cleaned, decide what we're selling with it and on a price. Fingers crossed it's a quick sale for this too....... then DH might just get round to getting the front sorted, as in a new water pipe put in and having it block-paved. :0)

The driving is going OK. On Tuesday night DH sat in the passenger seat once again whilst I drove us out to the village where the Development Circle is held. Afterwards I drove us both home again too.... in the dark! That was another first.... and I was sat so rigid that when I got home I'd got a banging headache, until my neck muscles nicely relaxed again. Now I've done it the once I shall do it again. Unfortunately I haven't had much chance to get any further practice in as DH was busy in the evenings, Saturday I had a very intensive Reiki session in the morning, had to have a sleep in the early afternoon and then helped DS wash the caravan. Sunday DH and I were over visiting my DSis for the day and we went in his car. I do plan on driving on Tuesday night again though - with DH as passenger, as I'll be happier with him there for the return journey just once more. Am hoping to get out again a few more times this week, as I need to be confident enough to drive solo this coming weekend.... the Healing Course I am taking starts then. :0)

The move in to the Craft Room has stalled a little. I need DH to make up some dividers, for the filing cabinet drawers, out of mountboard card - the pocket dividers he got me just aren't working, as they are limited as to how much you can put in each of them and they don't go down to the bottom of the drawer. There's a lot of wasted space and I can't fit half as much in a drawer as I need to at the moment. DH still hasn't managed to find the time to take the damaged shelves back to the office furniture place for replacements either - another stall factor.

Whilst at my DSis's we had a trip to The Range. DSis had a small splurge on a few craft goodies and a duvet set to go with the new colour scheme in her back bedroom. I was extremely restrained and just bought another folder for storing peel-offs in.... so guess what I'll be doing in the next few days. LOL Unfortunately they didn't have any more storage boxes than the branch over here, so I am still looking for suitable ones. It's getting a tad frustrating now and is another contributory factor to the stall too. Ah, well.... it'll get there eventually. :0)

Thank you for taking the time to visit and for all your kind comments. Hope you all had a good weekend and a gentle start to the week. :0)

Monday, 12 April 2010

The Usual...... and a Cute Teddies Giveaway

Once again it's time for the usual weekly progress update on Mother Earth. Yes, it's getting boringly predictable... but persevere, as there's something nice afterwards. LOL  So here's where I got up to this week:

Although I'd enjoyed stitching those trees it was so nice to be able to stitch in some different colours. There are still some of those trees to stitch but I'll get back to them when I've done a bit more of that blue first. :0) I didn't get as much stitched on this as I'd have liked but that was because I wasn't feeling too great for some of this week... and I'd also been busy doing some other things (more of that later). Am feeling much more in the mood for stitching now, so hope to get a lot more done this week. :0)

During the last few weeks it occured to me that two Blogoversaries have slipped past without my realising it, resulting in no celebration.... nope, not even the letting off of a celebratory party popper or three. And my blog has recently hit another milestone too..... over 50 people have now added themselves as Followers. That one still amazes me - all those folks thinking this blog is worth stopping by for a visit! How cool is that? :0) This then led on to thoughts of having wanted to do something after my operation last year, as a thank you that the ovarian cyst was benign and for the operation and recuperation having gone well..... but time got away from me, as I got busy doing things again. 

There's also the new Baby to celebrate, along with my recent return to driving. Yes folks, I had my first refresher lesson on Thursday (8th), followed by a second on Saturday (10th)..... and both the instructor and myself have lived to tell the tale..... and both her car and mine still in one piece too, not a dink or scratch on either. ;0) LOL The Instructor boosted my confidence big time when she said there was no point in my having any more lessons with her, as my DH could sit and do what she was doing...... because everything I need to do is all there, I'm doing well, and all I need now is practice. So DH bravely sat in the passenger seat while I had a tootle out in my car on Sunday - still in one piece, though maybe with a few extra grey hairs..... and he swears the nervous tic has absolutely nothing to do with it. ROFL Actually what he did say was that I'd done very well.... I think I surprised him.

We also carried on with the clearout this weekend: DH has been going through all kinds of paperwork, shredding/filing/recycling as he went, resulting in a full blue recycling box and three bags of shredded paper going to a local animal sanctuary. We've also got an old cupboard out of the living room (currently sat in the hall - going to phone a local charity to come and take it) and pushed DH's armchair back.... suddenly the living room looks a whole lot bigger. Getting DH motivated to do this has taken a long while, so I definitely consider it worth celebrating. LOL

Another plus is that the new Craft Room is nicely taking shape too, after a looooong wait for it to get started. Getting things organised for that is unearthing things in my stash that I've decided aren't to my taste anymore and others that I know I won't get around to stitching..... which led on to my next thoughts: yes, I have many things to be grateful for and many extra Blessings to count..... and I'dreally  like to share some of the happiness..... spread a little good Karma around...... hopefully brighten someone's day, so I thought I'd have a few random little giveaways whenever the mood takes me.

I decided to start with cute and you can't get much cuter than these three little fellas:

Two Christmas kits because, lets face it, you can never start your festive stitching too early, can you? LOL And the other one makes me think of Spring, so thought it was appropriate for the time of year (btw, the packaging got damaged for this so I've popped it into a new bag - contents are fine/all there though).

There are no rules to this giveaway and no having to advertise it on your blog (unless you want to). All you have to do to enter is say so in the comments. No worries if you don't...... just keep an eye open for future giveaways, as there might be something in one of those that appeals to you more. I'll get my DH or DS (depends who I can pressgang is around at the time) to pull a name out of the glass fruit bowl Crystal Chalice of Fortune next weekend and I'll pop the winner's name in my next post on Monday 12th. :0)

Hope you all had a lovely weekend. Thank you for stopping by and for the kind comments you leave. Good Luck if you join in the giveaway. :0)

Monday, 5 April 2010

All Kinds of Progress and a Confession

Another slightly late posting but I do have a good excuse this week: yesterday (Easter Sunday) DH, DS and I were all over in Derbyshire, visiting DH's Dad and step-Mum, doing a belated Christmas present swap (we couldn't get over there at the time, due to my op and recuperation) and catching up with all the news. FIL is in his 80's nd MIL in her 70's but both remain very active and look much younger than their years. Of course the visit meant an early start and a late return, so no time to take pics or post on blogs during Sunday.

So, without more ado, here is last week's progress on Mother Earth:

Just a few random stitches and lack of time stopped the completion of yet another page. The next page has a much smaller section to stitch so am hoping it won't take too long to complete it.... it will also be nice to get on to some lighter colours, so am looking forward to stitching on that sky. LOL

As for other things: I haven't yet managed to have another drive in my baby as we've been busy - soon, I hope.
DS caught the sort-out bug over the bank holiday, so we tackled some of the loft clutter/junk. The result: the back of his Mini (back seats lowered) was filled with a dead printer (yes, DH had snuck one into the loft, to avoid it going last year!) and an old monitor, a dead kettle and assorted polystyrene infills and cardboard. When that was full he moved the car round the corner so we could get DH's on the front, to load it: that got filled with loads more cardboard (all empty, flattened boxes); a big red tub full of junk; two crates full of Tetra Paks for recycling; a black bag full of assorted cr*p and an old fibreglass sheet that came off the metal shed we got rid of last year. It was extremely satisfying to see all that lot go into the relevant skips at the amenities site. :0)

Last week also saw the arrival of the new furniture for my Craft Room and the start of the major organisation of all my stash, stitching and cardmaking. It's meant quite a few trips up and down the stairs and is going to mean a whole lot more before it's done. I'm taking the view that the enforced exercise is going to do me good and will help towards the fitness levels and weight loss I would like to achieve before our holiday in the Lake District in July..... I just hope my knees can hold out. LOL

I've taken some pictures, as promised, but they're not great - the room is small, making it impossible to get the right angles to take decent, overall, ones. Here's a view of the filing cabinet and some of the bookcase, in situ:

Only the first two shelves are in because those are the only two that I knew where I wanted them. Mind, the other three shelves couldn't go up anyway, even if I did know whereabouts I needed them, as they are all damaged. Nope, I wasn't a happy bunny when that was realised.... and we haven't been able to get them swapped yet, due to it being a bank holiday weekend. Plus whoever sorted this order can't count, as they also didn't send enough of the fixing screws to fit the final shelf, so we need to get that sorted too.
Here's a bit better view of the bookcase, which has since had about eight jigsaw puzzles stacked on the very top, their temporary home until DH puts up a shelf for me:

There's a funny gap left in the corner which I'm hoping is big enough to take one of those slimline bookcases, and that'll be used to store the things I don't use very often. As you can see some of my stuff is already in there. The piles on the top of the cabinet and on the corner of the table are kits: those are being sorted into themes (ie: Angels; dragons; historical; Christmas etc etc) ready to be filed away. I didn't dare take a pic of all of it........ DH might use it as evidence, trying to boost his argument that I already have enough/too much stash. Huh, what does a man know about what constitutes enough/too much, when it comes to stash?????!!!!! ROFL

Here's a view of the new computer chair:

I think it goes quite nicely with the colour scheme and, as you can see, has already come in useful for the kit sort through. LOL

It's been quite a voyage of discovery, this sort through. It's been punctuated with exclamations of: Ooo I'd forgotten I'd got that! and Oh, I so want to stitch this now! and the final one, when it was all stacked up: OMG, I'm going to have to live until I'm at least 200 to get through this lot - and I haven't even started on the charts yet! But please don't tell DH I said that - it'll back up his enough/too much theory.... and that "I told you so" look he'd give me would drive me crazy! LOL

OK, so now it's confession time: my name is Karan and I am a cross stitch stash addict. SABLE has most definitely been reached.

BTW, it was a whole lot of fun getting there. ;0)

Thank you to everyone who takes the time to visit. Hope you have all enjoyed a lovely Easter weekend. :0)