Monday, March 26, 2012

Collecting My Thoughts


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I'm still working on getting back in the swing of things, so there's really no stitching progress to show (I just keep flitting from piece to piece). So, instead I thought I'd just show you some things I've been meaning to share and finally got around to taking photos of yesterday. First up is my framed Hand & Heart piece. You may recall I finished this right before Thanksgiving. I took it in to be framed in early January so that I'd have it in time to give to Eric for Valentine's Day. I was able to give him the piece in February, but missed Valentine's Day by a week and a half. Unfortunately there were problems with the frame, so after the first time it came in, it had to be reordered.



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I was really set on this frame after I saw it because I wanted a wide frame for the piece, since it's so small (similar to how Lisa framed the model). We also left a little more margin around the piece for that same reason. And I just loved the accents of red on the frame too.


And the piece has been hanging for awhile now, since I'm just getting around to sharing it. I knew, of course, when I stitched it that it would be hung in our bedroom along with Where My Heart Blooms (last year's Valentine's Day gift). As you can see, I have plenty of room for more framed pieces.



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And just as a reminder, for anyone interested in the specifics - Hand & Heart is a freebie from The Primitive Needle. I stitched mine with the recommended Weeks threads on the recommended 40ct Dill by Picture This Plus. It's funny because that Dill fabric didn't look green at all when I stitched the piece, but now that it's framed, it's definitely looking a lot greener.

And next up, another little something I've been meaning to share. I won a giveaway Laurie was having on her blog. I was so excited to win and have enjoyed looking through the book. Laurie also sent along a surprise of some great scissors that I will be putting to great use once I get back to quilting (which I hope is soon!).



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Thank you so much, Laurie, for the generous giveaway!!

And finally, a little crafting finish. Back at the beginning of October some friends and I got together for a fabulous stitching day. One speedy stitcher had already stitched up one of the pieces from BBD's A Schoolgirl's Work called Polly's Sewing Box. It's a sweet little piece, but then she made color copies of the piece and sized them down. And we were each presented with the little boxes (already painted) and the color copy so that we could make another project from the book - Polly's Thimble Box.



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Well, the plan was for us to work on finishing our little boxes that day, but we got so busy stitching that we didn't get around to it. So, recently, I asked if I could get a lesson on how to do the Briwax finishing on the box. So, a couple of us got together and voila - I learned how to sand my painted box and apply the Briwax finishing to it. Now I'm a Briwaxing fiend!!

Isn't it the sweetest little thing?



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So, a big thanks to my crafty friends who put all of this together and showed me how to do the finishing. I love my little thimble box!


That's all I have to show you today. And do go see The Hunger Games - it was really good! And I have two words about the casting - Lenny Kravitz. I think Lenny made an excellent Cinna, but mostly I just love me some Lenny Kravitz. And last week I decided to re-read the book before seeing the movie, since it's been since 2009 since I originally read that one. The book was just as good, if not better the second time around. Anyway - go see the movie, if you get a chance.


Maybe next time I'll have some stitching to show. It's coming up on WIPocalypse update time again!


I am grateful for getting to stitch on ATS last night.

Monday, March 19, 2012

Just a Reminder...




You know where I'll be on Friday.

Monday, March 12, 2012

Two Cakes in One

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So far this year, each one of my WIPocalypse posts have featured a finish, which is pretty fantastic. First it was Margaret Cottam, then last month it was the bonus block from Anniversaries of the Heart and this month it's another Anniversaries of the Heart block. I'm a little overdue for my WIPocalypse post this month, but I wanted to wait because I was so close to having another little finish - and this one is important.

You may remember that I decided to go ahead and start the June block instead of moving on to the March block next because I wanted my dad to be able to see it finished? The June block is actually called "Happy Birthday" and I made a some changes to it. I wanted this block to represent both my dad and his mother - they both have June birthdays only two days apart. I decided to put each of their names on the block, over one, instead of initials as charted. I also changed the color on the names so that they were a bit easier to read. And then instead of splitting up the year on either side of the house, I stitched the year each of them was born over one as well.

So, on the left side of the block - it says Margaret and the year 1915. This is my dad's mother.

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She died long before I was born. In fact, I think my mother only met her once before she died of cancer in 1965. The photo above is from 1937. She must have been an amazing woman, and to hear my dad talk about her, she was. He sent me an email once with the subject line "My mom is braver than your mom" and the photo below attached.

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She must have been something. (Although to be fair, there just isn't any photographic evidence of my mom being chased by a wild bison.)

The right side of the block has my dad's name, John, and the year he was born - 1944. As soon as I saw this block I knew I wanted to change the wording inside the cartouche from "Happy Birthday Dear Friend" to something more meaningful.

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My dad told me once that he and his mom would celebrate their birthdays together - she would make a big cake for the bottom layer and a smaller cake for the top layer. One for each of them. And she would whisper to him "two cakes in one" because it was their little secret. Here's my dad in 1948 with his mother's carving knife and their cakes.

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And here's my dad in the Air Force.

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Unfortunately, I didn't get my dad's block finished in time for him to see it. He died on February 24th. I did my best, but I just wasn't fast enough. But, I'm glad it's finished and I took it to show my mom yesterday and she told me he would have loved it. I think it's a good remembrance of him and his mom even if those lazy daisy stitches seemed neverending!

And speaking of the lazy daisies, on the morning of the day he died, I noticed my mom's neighbor's trees were all in bloom so I took my mom out to show them to her.

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Coincidentally, the block has little pink trees on either side. So, it will always remind me of that little moment of beauty and the peace of that morning.

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I miss you.

I am grateful for a legacy.