All Hearts Come Home

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I thought I’d share a few little photos of our holiday home. I absolutely love having seasonal stitched pieces out, and I hope in the next year to have more of them.
I had hoped to have all of my ornaments finished and hanging on the tree at this point, but it hasn’t happened yet. I should just bite the bullet and get over it, like Siobhan did. But, at least I have two new ornaments to hang on the tree (actually, now that I think of it, there’s three…I just forgot to photograph this one).

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Maybe before the tree comes down on January 1, I’ll be able to add a few more to it?

And I will let you in on another little secret. Since sometime in mid-June, I’ve been looking everywhere for the fabric I used on my 2000 Years Ago piece. I needed the extra fabric for the back of an ornament as well as to make a hanger so that 2000 Years Ago could be displayed at Christmas. Well. Let me tell you, I tore this place apart. Looked in every bag, box and basket of fabric I have. Looked in places I didn’t really think it would be…and never found it. I was getting very sad that I was going to have to use thumbtacks to put up my pretty wallhanging, or just drape it over the tree like some kind of Christmas poncho. But, when I pulled out my boxes of Christmas decorations, guess what I found. My bag of fabric, that had fallen behind the Christmas decorations in the closet. Hallelujah! So, I zip zip zip sewed a little sleeve on the back of the wallhanging and hung that sucker on the wall.

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Of course, now that I look at it on the wall, I think it needs something. Some extra little ooomph of some sort. I’ll just have to figure out what. But, it’s hanging!!
If you’d like to see more photos of our home decorated for the holidays, take a look here, on the other blog. There are photos from NYC at Christmas a few years ago too, if you go back a couple of posts over there.
Anyway, I’m sure you’re all wondering when I’m actually going to talk about stitching and if, in fact, there is any going on. Well, wonder no more. This was my Thanksgiving Day start.

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Margaret Cottam, by La-D-Da. I have finished part 1 and am well into part 2. I don’t have part 3 yet, but I’m sure it’s coming in the near future. I’m stitching MC on the called for Weeks Cocoa linen, but on 40ct. Isn’t she lovely. I have really been enjoying her.
And MC is not alone. I’ve got some other stuff I’m up to, but I can’t share quite yet. I’ll just have to leave you with a little teaser.

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I hope you all have a wonderful holiday, filled with lots of friends, fun & family. Oh and eggnog too, don’t forget the eggnog!

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I am grateful for pumpkin seeds in my salad.

Sweet are the flowers…

Eric brought home these beautiful roses for me on Thursday to celebrate 11 months married. I can hardly believe we’ve almost been married a year! These are called Freedom. I stitched some on Barnabee last night. Not as much as I would have liked, due to book club. I did finish up the row of clover and stitch the wording, with Lady Scarlet making her cameo appearance. This was a fun little band. Next week, I should be able to finish up Part 1. I just love this piece!

And my productivity last weekend paid off. Last weekend I sanded and painted and stained to my little heart’s content. And today, I was able to assemble all the pieces. Here is First Snow, now with stained hanger.
And here is Winter Snapperland all laced and framed.
I love the way both of these turned out. I went ahead and bought frames for the other three Snapperlands (Spring, Summer, Autumn) since I already have them in my stash. And the frames were super cheap…I think I paid like $3.99 or something for them. They didn’t have a white frame, like I wanted, but they had a natural wood frame. So, I sanded it lightly and painted it myself. You can’t beat $3.99!! I am glad to have the finishing done on both these pieces…a little late for Winter (since it was 80 degrees here today), but finished nonetheless. And look at me, getting all crazy with the angled photos. LOL! I had hoped to finish off another little project today, but I still need a couple of things, so it will have to wait awhile. I’ll be stitching more on Mystery 9 this weekend. I hope to finish up at least one artichoke. And the next piece for the Just Nan RR showed up today, so I will probably start stitching on it Monday. I really hope the piece I mailed shows up soon…I am getting concerned about it because I sent it over a week ago, and it was only going like 300 miles. Ack! Well, that’s it for now. I’ll leave you with a quote from Snow Country, that we discussed at my book club last night. It was wonderful, and seeing all the Japanese scrolls and screens was amazing!

“The Milky Way. Shimamura too looked up, and he felt himself floating into the Milky Way. Its radiance was so near that it seemed to take him up into it. Was this the bright vastness that the poet Basho saw when he wrote of the Milky Way arched over a stormy sea? The Milky Way came down just over there, to wrap the night earth in its naked embrace. There was a terrible voluptuousness about it. Shimamura fancied that his own small shadow was being cast up against it from the earth. Each individual star stood apart from the rest, and even the particles of silver dust in the luminous clouds could be picked out, so clear was the night. The limitless depth of the Milky Way pulled his gaze up into it. “

-Yasunari Kawabata, from Snow Country

I am grateful for art.

Thank You Stars

I hope everyone has had a great holiday! Mine was fabulous and relaxing. Eric gave me the most gorgeous Venetian glass heart earrings and necklace. They are just exquisite! And aside from that, here is the best gift I received.

My best friend, Julia, who lives in Rhode Island is an amazing quilter. For her birthday this year, I gave her a selection of 200 squares of fabric from Keepsake Quilting. She used those 200 squares and made matching quilts for herself and for me. Isn’t this the most gorgeous thing?! You can see how big it is because that is Eric holding it up. She included a flanged border on it as well that is three-dimensional. I cried when I opened up the package and I have been carrying it with me all over the house (I feel like Linus). She titled the quilt “Thank You Stars”, and I cannot be more thankful for it. My photo here does not even do it justice, it is so vibrant and beautiful.

In stitching news, I finished up Winter Snapperland last night. I am so pleased to have this finished before the end of the year. I started it on January 2nd, so I was determined to get it finished before the year ended. I am so glad I did. It really is cute, even though they used essentially the same chart for the first and last. I also actually signed and dated this (discreetly), which I have never done on a piece before (unless you count Quaker Garden, which had my initials and year in the design). I plan to find a frame for this soon so that I can enjoy it for at least another month. I am now working on my January sheep blanket, in the hopes that I can finish it before January starts. Where, you might ask, is the December blanket? It is finished and I will show it to you tomorrow. I have to break up the pretties…. And Arthemise has decided to join our little Barnabee’s Quest SAL in February. I need to get my fabric on order soon probably, so that I am ready to go! That’s about it for today – have a great rest of the week!

I am grateful for losing 1.8 pounds over the week of Christmas! Go me! (That makes a total of 15.8!)

The Villa

The Villa is finished! I finished it up on Saturday afternoon, and got started on the border. Here’s the whole thing before I started on the border.
I am pleased to be making some progress on this. Thank you everyone for your compliments on my beaded handbag. The beading itself wasn’t hard, just took a lot of time. Actually putting the purse together and attaching it to the frame was the hard part. I had to sew in a lining and then attach it to the frame. That was exasperating. But, it turned out pretty! Today is my first official day of vacation. I had to get my allergy shots this morning, then I went over to my LNS to buy a little something for a gift. I ended up buying gifts for myself too…I’m so bad.
I love Fox Forest. I have never seen another sampler with foxes in it, so I thought it was unusual too. I also had to have Birth of Jesus, because I’ve been watching Glenna’s gorgeous progress on this piece. Last night Eric got the lights on the tree, and the Polar Express train set up underneath. Tonight, we’ll put on the ornaments. I am excited. I worked on our stockings today. I got them both cut out and the lining and backing fabrics cut too. Unfortunately, I cut Eric’s first going by the outline on the chart, and then cut mine. They are two different sizes. Mine is a good inch to two inches bigger than his. Urgh. I hope it’s ok, because I can’t fix it now. The outline of the stockings in the chart have you setting your seam pretty close to the stitching, so oh well. Maybe it won’t be that noticeable once they’re hung up? I can hope. I also finished reading Labyrinth by Kate Mosse and it was really good. I’ve started Eragon just this morning. So far, so good!

I am grateful for going and working out even though I’m on vacation.

Tired

Sorry everyone that my posts have been so sporadic of late. This week has been really tiring. I finished up my class module and now have three weeks off, which I can sure use. I have been continuing with my weights in my workouts. I am also officially on vacation for a week (I go back to work the day after Christmas) as of 5 o’clock today. I am just so tired. I haven’t stitched at all this week since Monday. Does that tell you how tired I am? But, here is my progress on my Winter Snapperland so far. I am almost finished with this part. I have the trees, some smoke, and stars to do (plus eyes on my snowman). And you have to go and take a look at this French blog. She turned her Winter Snapperland into a cube. I love this idea!

I will probably end up just framing mine. But, she even gives you a tutorial on this blog so you can make one too! And since I have no progress to show you really, I thought I would throw in another finish from earlier in the year. I made this purse for my wedding. I beaded the entire thing and then attached the frame. I’ve never done beading to this extent before, and I’ve never attached a purse frame to anything. So this was a reall learning experience.
I stitched on satin with little seed pearls and then used gold delicas for the initials. The fabric it is laying on is fabric for my wedding quilt which I intend to get around to one of these days.
Also, I just wanted to make everyone aware of two things…first, I (among others) am unable to leave comments on beta blogs for some reason. I can only do it if your blog allows anonymous comments. Someone please tell me I don’t have to sign up for a freaking Google password in order to fix this. Secondly, I appreciate all of my fellow bloggers and I have so much respect for those of you that are stitching gifts or even sending cards to each other this season. I am not doing either, so I hope that no one is disappointed or feels neglected if you don’t get something from me. I am doing good to get gifts for my family. And my time is so precious these days, that I just can’t spread myself any thinner. So, I hope you all understand. That’s all I know for today…I am off to try to finish reading Labyrinth (it’s good, go get it).

I am grateful for the love of my life.