2000 Years Ago

2000 Years Ago Top

2000 years ago I started this project, um, I mean back in December of 2005. It just seems like 2000 years ago. Shepherd’s Bush designed a series of eight ornaments that were released in the annual JCS Ornament issues. Knowing that they were going to be doing eight, I ordered eight ornament cuts of the recommended fabric, 32ct Dark Espresso by R&R (back in the days when a lot of shops offered ornament cuts of fabric). Of course, each ornament also featured a sterling silver charm from Shepherd’s Bush, so each year I made sure to order the new one.

Of course, stitching this was a two year long project, since I started them after the first few had been released. The last ornament was released in 2007, I believe. Shepherd’s Bush has since released all eight of these designs in two leaflets (four ornaments in each).

In Spring of 2008, I decided I wanted to finish these into a wallhanging, so that the entire series could be showcased together. I’ve since seen my friend Ava’s finish of these and her’s are framed and so gorgeous – I almost regret not framing them. But, anyway, I think this post was the last time I posted (or worked on) this piece. Back at Christmas, I decided to pull this out and work on it a bit more, with the hopes of having it hanging for the season. No such luck, but this weekend I decided I really needed to get this done. And in less than two hours, it was finished.

You can see the top four ornaments in the photo above, and below and the last four.

2000 Years Ago Bottom

I decided to teach myself how to make Prairie Points, and I am so thrilled with how they finish off the bottom of the piece. I may have even squealed when I saw how they looked.

2000 Years Ago Prairie Points

And here’s the whole thing.

2000 Years Ago 022611

I am so happy with how it turned out and it will be beautiful hanging during the holiday season this year! So, that’s one more thing off of my to do list. I can now turn my sewing machine over to working on my Batiks BOM from 2007 that needs another six blocks.

As for stitching this week, there wasn’t a lot of it. I had a migraine for three days, so only minimal progress was made on Valentine Rose. I’ve started filling in the mortar between the bricks though.

AOTH 022611

I’m taking a break from Valentine Rose in order to work on the pre-stitching for a Stacy Nash workshop I’ll be taking in March. I managed a good little start on it yesterday, after finishing my wallhanging, and I’ll be continuing to work on it this evening.

I am grateful for Eric proposing six years ago.


Country Cottage Needleworks
From the 2007 JCS Ornament Issue
DMC on 32ct Everglade from Silkweaver
Finished 4/16/08

I’ve finished the stitching on my first ornament! I am so pleased with how it turned out. I’m not going to worry too much about doing the finishing on it for now, I’ll probably get a few ornaments done and then do a mass finishing day. At least my tree will have one hand-stitched ornament on it! I finished this Wednesday night, and dove right into my next one last night.

This is Snow Bunnies by LHN from the same JCS issue (2007).

I’m stitching this one on Silkweaver’s Smoky Blue. Love it so far. It’s a change from all the greens. I had kind of a rough evening yesterday, so stitching on something fun and small like this was exactly what I needed.
And since Christmas seems to be on my mind, I decided to work a little on putting together my Shepherd’s Bush ornament wallhanging. I finally got around to purchasing fabric for it when I bought the backing fabric for the wedding quilt. I’ve made a little start on the sewing and I think I’ve decided on a layout. I’m trying to decide how I want to finish off the top and the bottom. I’m trying to think a little outside the box, and not do the same wallhanging finish I’ve done twice. I’m sort of throwing around the idea of attaching ribbon to the top so that I can attach it to the hanging rod by tying little bows. I’m also considering adding some little silver bells to the bottom (since it has the silver charms on it, I thought the bells might pick up on that). I’m trying to think “Shepherd’s Bush-y”. Any thoughts? I really love how the ornaments look though – I am so happy I took that project on and stitched all eight of them to go together!

Romeo was helping. He sat on the windowsill over my craft table.
I went ahead and made a little bit of a splurge too. Since (I understand) Just Nan is only going to be putting out one more Limited Edition WhimZi this year, and I’m on automatics for those…I decided to sign up for the automatics for her Over the Top/In the Tin series. The first of four should be on its way to me soon.

Cute, huh?

On Monday I went to the local Quilt Guild meeting, as a visitor. It was really fun and I am thinking about joining. I am also thinking about visiting the local EGA Chapter to see what it is like. I figured it would be a great way to meet some like-minded people, or at least people who like to craft! I am really feeling the pull to get some more of my quilting done. We haven’t planned anything this weekend, so I am hoping to be able to spend some time with my sewing machine. Hopefully I’ll get my SB wallhanging finished! Next on my list after that is to put the binding on my $5 quilt that I had quilted at the end of last year and finish it up. Don’t worry though, my stitching won’t suffer! Oh, and I managed to finish up Barbara’s prize for my 250th post giveaway (about time I know) and it is winging its way to her now! I hope you like it, Barbara! Have a great weekend and enjoy your stitching!
I am grateful for renewed interest in quilting.

Merry Christmas To All

Sweet Baby
Shepherd’s Bush
Eighth in a series from the JCS Ornament Issue
Weeks, GAST and DMC on 32ct Dark Espresso Linen from R&R
Sterling Moon Charm
Finished 12/23/07

I finished the last of the Shepherd’s Bush ornaments on Sunday. I probably won’t get them made into a wall-hanging for a little while, but at least they are all stitched. My Christmas stitching plans were kind of thrown off by everything that has happened since Thanksgiving.

Here they all are together. Pretty, huh?

And to answer a few questions from my last post… Karin asked if those were Pampered Chef serving pieces. Why yes, they are! Eric and I registered at Pampered Chef when we got married, so we have lots of their goodies!

And Anna asked what the deal is with trains and Christmas. I found a couple of mentions of the tradition here and here. I think for Eric, he is a big train enthusiast, so a train around the Christmas tree is a must. Also the reason I chose to stitch Harry’s stocking for him (because of the train at the bottom). I didn’t grow up with trains, and it’s only been since we were married that a train has been at the base of my tree. The tradition in our family was going to see the Nutcracker ballet every year.

And of course, it is time to announce the winner of the 250th Post is Barbara! Congratulations, Barbara!! I’ll contact you for your mailing info!!

So, that’s a photo of me with the stocking my mom made for me. My parents have been working on scanning all of their slides from when my sister and I were growing up. I don’t remember ever seeing it before.

Merry Christmas!

I am grateful for another beautiful holiday with my husband (and apple pancakes too)!

Planning Is What I Do Best

I’m going to leave the giveaway open a little longer, since this is such a busy time of year. I know that I am WAY behind on blog reading, so I’m sure others are too.
I have managed to check in on a few blogs in the past few days, and I noticed that several people are beginning their look towards 2008. In an effort to keep my mind busy, I decided I would start some planning as well. The past few years I’ve spent a lot of time planning all the new projects I will begin and want to stitch that year. Needless to say, most of them I didn’t get to, and most of them if started, are still WIPs. So, this year I want to change my focus a little bit. I would really like to get my WIPs finished. I have so many – too many. I do enjoy my stitching for the most part and try not to set too many boundaries for my stitching, but I think that in order to finish some of these, I need a plan. So here goes…
The Plan:
Focus on finishing my WIPs. I have planned a new start after every third finished WIP in order to keep me motivated. I have also planned two January starts – one on January 1st, and the other a monthly SAL.

1. NEW – January 1 start and Monthly Red Thread SAL [Mermaids of the Deep Blue 1/1 start]
2. Mystery 9
3. Tesori d’Italia
4. Barnabee’s Quest
5. NEW – Nativity (this will be my 2008 Christmas project)
6. Mystery Sampler
7. Dorothy’s Garden
8. Bay Sampler
9. NEW – Pearl Lights (maybe)
10. Mermaid Treasure Box
11. Midi Mystery 2
12. Queen of the Needle Case
13. NEW
14. Water ACEO
15. Teeny Witch

I will also be focusing on stitching ornaments this year and will work those in as I can. Smalls will also include catching up on my Just Nan WhimZis and finishing up my Essie’s Friends pieces.

I also want to considerably cut down on the number of charts I buy. I have more than enough to keep me busy. I intend to continue with my automatics (Prairie Schooler new releases, Blackbird Designs Loose Feathers and Just Nan Limited Edition WhimZis), and will only buy charts that are time sensitive or needed for an RR/Exchange.

My “splurges” this year, rather than being stash will be having some things professionally framed or finished.

So that’s what I have in mind. Of course, it is all subject to change and may be thrown out of the window totally. But, I would really like to see some of these pieces finished, especially Mystery 9 which has a place in our bedroom already – I just need to finish it! It will be going to Jill Rensel for framing as well. You can see photos of the WIPs here, if you’d like a look.

And speaking of WIPs, I still have two pieces that I wanted to get done before the end of the year (well, before Christmas, really, but who’s counting?). Above is my TW Second Day of Christmas that is for Eric. I haven’t stitched on it since I last showed it to you before our trip. There’s still a whole lot to go on this one.
I also have made a start on the last Shepherd’s Bush ornament – Sweet Baby. This one should be finished soon, hopefully. I may not get my wall hanging made before Christmas though, but we’ll see how it goes.
Hope you’re all having a great week.
Walk to Rivendell: Still in the eastern edge of the Marshes. (Total Miles Walked: 209.25)
I am grateful for Othello and Romeo.

Two Finishes!

Baby Garden
Just Nan
DMC on 28ct Raw Cashel Zweigart
Embellished with Garden Bunny Bead
Stitched 2/5/07 to 11/24/07
I cannot tell you how happy I am to have finished Baby Garden! I am really pleased with the way it turned out, and I think it will be stunning framed. I’ll go searching for a frame soon so that I can mail it off for Christmas. I had a few issues with it near the end, mostly because I was anxious to finish I think. Half of the fence had to be ripped out and restitched because I had one stitch that went over three instead of over two, and it threw everything else off. That bottom row of green rice stitches had to be stitched twice because the first time I stitched it in the wrong color green. Although tempted to leave it, I felt like if it was worth stitching, it was worth doing right. So, I pulled that out and restitched. All finished on Saturday, but the majority of that last band was stitched during the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day parade. Here’s a closeup of the last band. I love the bird’s nest.
I plan to focus now on finishing the rest of my Christmas stitching, which is my Shepherd’s Bush ornaments and the 2nd Day ornament for Eric. So, in the interest of doing that – on Saturday, I also finished up the seventh of eight ornaments.
Mary and Joseph
Shepherd’s Bush
Seventh of Eight Ornaments from the JCS Ornament Issue
GAST and Weeks on 32ct Dark Espresso Linen (R&R)
Embellished with Sterling Rose Bud
Finished 11/24/07
Just one more to go, and then I’ll be finishing this up into a wallhanging.
Although I have a lot more WIPs to finish, I’ve decided to start a new piece in January. I think I’ve chosen the piece, but I’ll keep it a surprise for now! Last year I really missed having a new start for January 1st. There seems like so much to do between now and the time we leave for NY. I’m really looking forward to it, but nervous at the same time. Hopefully when we get back, I’ll be able to relax, enjoy my holidays and stitch on something for me. So, now I just have to get everything finished before the 8th!!
Hope you all had a fabulous Thanksgiving, and a wonderful weekend.

Walk to Rivendell: Ground becomes damp. Entering western edge of Midgewater Marshes. (Total Miles Walked 178.75)

I am grateful for a big finish and Thanksgiving parades!