Thursday, March 30, 2006

Cherry Blossoms Deux

I am always disappointed that they don't have a fragrance like apple blossoms. But, they are pretty. Posted by Picasa

Cherry Blossom Time

Guess who was up before dawn to bring DS to school for a class trip...

Seemed like a logical time to drive into D.C. to take photos of the cherry blossoms. Today is peak.

Just me and 1,000 professional photographers. Boy, was my camera outclassed. Posted by Picasa

Wednesday, March 29, 2006

my LNS haul

Went to Needlewoman East in Falls Church to see what I could find for fibers for embellishing this crazy quilt ornament. Oh la! What a selection of fibers. I must have walked around the spinning racks and walls 20 times.

I originally went in with the intent of matching my Silk N Colors Spotted Cobra. (what I bought this for, I do not know. But it must have been for some reason.) Along the way, I of course changed my mind. I kind of had a piece in the current issue of Pieceworks in my head and started to plan a lily pad, cattail, and blueberries theme. Maybe a pine tree or two. And yes, a spider web.

This entailed buying some Petite Glass Beads, a blue based Waterlilies, a brown Whisper, a pink and a green card of Splendor, 3 colors of Sparkle! Braid, and just to try, a green Mandarin Floss which is by Rainbow Gallery and is a 6-ply 100% bamboo thread. Now to finish up the background so I can start playing with these things. Well, maybe I should just put a doodle cloth in a hoop and have some fun!

Tuesday, March 28, 2006

Agnes Scott Progress

Since taking this photo I've completed the line of chain stitching under the third band and continued working down the sides. Posted by Picasa

After Sorrow

Been trying to post this picture here since the SBQ about stitching over one. This is a Heart's Content kit. Twenty-five colors of silk on 40ct silk gauze. About 2 1/2 by 4 inches. Something like 16,000 stitches. Started it in 1998 and finished in 1999. Posted by Picasa

Typing Fettered

Yeah! bandage is off my pinky and I can type at speed again. That was an annoying little interlude.

I knotted up a piece of perle cotton on the crazy quilt ornament I'm doing for EGA on Sunday. I just set it down and walked away from it. Guess I'll deal with today. What an idiot. Meanwhile I've been choosing threads for embellishment. And I have no idea why I have Silk N Colors Spotted Cobra. But I think this is my color pallette. Unfortunately the only other thread I have that matches is a Balger cord. That means a trip to a stitching store. Maybe Needlewoman East because I haven't been there since returning to VA last summer.

Friday, March 24, 2006

still got a band-aid

on my little finger, but at least now I can press down with it and not have a lightening bolt of pain shoot up my arm. Who is the genius who invented fingertip bandages? I'm grateful, whoever you are.

Had a nice chat with a friend from the past last night. I knew that things wouldn't fall apart in a certain group when I left. But I am happy to hear that more people have been joining and that the group continues to evolve. There was a fair amount of news of the "bad" variety. Car accidents, deployments, cancer, and a friend with alzheimer's who is unfortunately leaving this world at a fast rate.

Sometimes a laundry list of things like that would make me depressed. Instead I feel mostly guilty that things are so good for me.

Thursday, March 23, 2006


or more likely, why?
As in, why can I not post pictures here with Picasa? I've been trying for the past week and it just hangs. Heavy sigh.

No visual aids for me today.

And poor Agnes Scott has been shunted aside for a class project from EGA. Not much I can do about that. Four hours of stitching on it yesterday leads to believe, this is 30-40 hour project. More if I spend a lot of time deciding exactly how to embellish and with what threads.

Tuesday, March 21, 2006

typing without the letter A

Yesterd@y I bent b@ck the n@il on my left little finger - did @ splendid job - @bout 1/4 inch below the white p@rt. Not good. Silk thre@ds @nd b@nd@ids don't go well together. Typing is out, too, @ my norm@l speed. Just killing time before DS rings me up looking for ride home. Bought gloves so I will be @ble to do dishes. Idiot. Yes.

Monday, March 20, 2006

stitching blogger's question 3/17/06

Do you stitch “over one?” If so, describe your experiences. If not, have you considered it?

I took 2 SOXS classes in 1997 - one with Paula of Crossed Wing in which we did birds silk on silk gauze - and one with Maureen Appleton - a lily design on 40ct fabric. These were my first exposures to the pleasures of over one. Loved it. Still love it.

After making many bird pins on silk gauze, I moved on to a Heart's Content kit - After Sorrow Comes Joy. Ah. A solid sampler on silk gauze. I worked on this as an alternate to my largest project, the Newburyport Sampler. It was quite a contrast. My favorite place to stitch on this piece was in church on Sunday morning while the choir was rehearsing. The minister would always stop and check my progress and offer to buy it. Told her for $800 she could have it. It's still in my possession. LOL

From there I moved on to various over one projects. On silk gauze and on linen. Some crossed stitch, some petit point. My Celtic Christmas has her face and hands done over one. Looks so much better that way.

I only hope my eyes continue to permit me to work small. So far, so good.

Friday, March 17, 2006

Woodlawn Day

I made there bright and early - well, 10 a.m. 'cause that's when they open.

There are some amazingly talented individuals out there with needles in their hands. *applause*

Though again I have sometimes have to wonder at the judging. The piece that won the Pope Leighey Award was puckered. It was two of the Kreinik 40 ct over one with silk on silk gauze cat faces and the black and white cat had a huge ripple in it. Now I realize that the framing is out of the stitcher's control most of the time, but that doesn't mean that the stitcher should accept a less than perfect framing job. Trust me that wasn't all that I noticed. 'Nuf said.

But I think they nailed Best in Show. It was stitched by Sharon Hines of Smithfield Virginia and contains the stitcher's prayer written by Mary-Dick Digges. A stunning sampler.

Though the Japanese threadwork piece was absolute perfection.

I did wander over to In Stitches afterwards. Needed some supplies for an EGA class. And wanted to pick up the fabric for A Most Noble Pursuit. Which will make it into the rotation sometime. And I'm planning on stitching 8 of the 10 designs.

I picked up Sheepish Designs Kitty Exemplary, the fabric for it, and the threads. But somehow the graph didn't make it into my bag (nor did I pay for it.) Oh well. An excuse to return. Also bought Carriage House Samplings "Matter's Choice" and the 2 skeins of Needlepoint silk needed to do it. Will look in stash for fabric for this one.

Wednesday, March 15, 2006


I've been reading accounts of various stitching camps and I am so jealous.

Green with envy.

Would love to attend.

Last time I did anything like this was (*gasp*) 1997!
SOXS in Sacramento.
I enjoyed my classes so much.

At EGA all any can talk about now is National Seminar. And though there are some classes I would certainly enjoy, it just seems rather expensive. If you don't stay overnight at the hotel, they charge you $125 so you might as well stay. There's a $75 fee in addition to class fees. So now I'm up over $200 and haven't even taken a class. Sigh. Maybe someday. But not this year.

Still chugging along

Making progress on Agnes Scott. Stitched farther down the side borders yesterday.

But I'm feeling the need to have a smaller alternate project. I need to decide between a UFO or maybe I should kit up the Blackbird Designs piece I picked up to stitch for my niece and her fiancee. I'm afraid of starting the Blackbird piece because I'll want to stitch right through and Agnes will languish. Again.

Ah decisions, decisions.

Monday, March 13, 2006

eh hmm

Okay. I made a mistake. And compounded it by stitching for another 6-7 hours. My Agnes Scott is no longer perfect. And I'm leaving it in. Why not? It's a reproduction sampler with original mistakes included. So I checked the pattern carefully and think I can get away with it. I inserted an extra row down and the pattern moved two threads over to the left. But I've got room to leave it and don't want to frog and restitch.

Lazy git.

a big thank you

to the national media for ignoring women's college hockey.

Thank Bob we have the internet so I can get my news.

Big congratulations to the UNH women's team for a terrific season 32-2-1! including an unbeaten streak of 28 games. They last lost in Nov and tied a game in January.

Playing Harvard in the NCAA tourney on Friday at the Whit. That place will be rockin'! Wish I could be there.

Thursday, March 09, 2006

not time for stitching

Been running around with the college girl. Which is so much fun. I'm glad we genuinely like each other.

On Tuesday we even did lunch with girlfriend followed by shopping at Victoria's Secret and then found her a new skirt and a pair of winter white pants. (It always a joy for me to see her in something other than jeans.) Then it was off to get our hair cut. Just a trim (but when your hair grows an inch a month and you haven't cut it since June...) Much, much better.

Will be sad to see her return to school, but she will be back very soon. The semester ends at the beginning of May. Wow. Maybe today we'll go pick up a job application or two...

Monday, March 06, 2006

American Indian Museum

Yesterday we were going to see the Cezanne in Provence exhibit at the National Gallery, but left a little later than we should have. So first we stopped at the AIM to look around for an hour and then have lunch in that amazing cafeteria.

This was my second trip so I just went an viewed the newer Pacific Coast exhibit. They did have 3 Tinglit weavers there. Amazing stuff. Once again I was blown away by the beadwork that was included. And I admired the mother-of-pearl button blankets.

Now if you go to D.C. you must visit this cafeteria. You get to choose regional cuisine done with native food items. I had smoked trout salad on walnut apple bread with dandelion greens. Yummy. DS had a navajo taco - sort of a tostada made with fry bread. And sassafras tea - not something you can get just anywhere. DH went for the cedarplanked salmon with wildrice and a seaweed and mushroom side dish. The setting of cafeteria alone is worth the trip. If you're lucky you'll score a table near the window and get to watch the water.

Then it was off to see Cezanne. Pretty powerful stuff. Wish there had been fewer people there, but what are you gonna do.

Came home and finally had DD's birthday meal - nice thick ribeyes, with sesame green beans and pinenut couscous.

She had asked for a raspberry cake and I sold her on a chocolate cake with raspberry accents.
I used the chocolate cake recipe from the King Arthur cookbook, put raspberry jam between the layers, frosted it with a special dark cocoa frosting and served it with whipped cream and raspberry sauce and raspberries. Went well with the Oscars.

Saturday, March 04, 2006


As I'm driving DH home from the airport last night (about a 10 minute drive -yeah!), I said that I thought of what I wanted from Hawaii and apologized for not thinking of it before he went - some Kona coffee please!

And what did he buy? Kona coffee. Good boy.

And what else did he buy?


You'll never guess...

Most women might be pissed, but not me...

I love that he knows me well enough to know he can do this...

Hawaiian wedding rings.

It's not that we don't already have wedding rings. In fact we have 2 sets. The original plain gold bands that us poor starving college students bought for - I think - $70 for the pair. Then we have the Black Hills rings that we bought in the early 90s. Beautiful rings, but they are silver with gold and have changed shape slightly over the years.

When we were in San Diego in 2004 we looked at Hawaiian weddings (military exchange carries them out there). We even drove to Mirmar just in case they had some we liked. The problem was finding 2 that both liked and that fit us.

So the man that won't sleep on flowered sheets, bought us flowery wedding rings. LOL ah the irony. But they are beautiful and I love them.

14K gold bands with thin black bands top and bottom with cut out flowers in the middle - plumeria, hibiscus, bird of paradise.

Friday, March 03, 2006

stitching blogger's question 3/3

What cross-stitch magazines or other publications (as opposed to blogs) do you read on a regular basis? What do you like about them? What do you not like? What would your perfect publication include?

The only mag I still subscribe to is Sampler and Antique Needlework Quarterly. I miss Fine Lines. I read Piecework and leaf through Just Cross Stitch at the bookstore and then usually choose not to purchase them.

The other two mags that I will always buy if I can find them are the Jill Oxton's Cross Stitch and Beading from Australia - Jill Oxton's Cross Stitch & Beading and Stitch from Great Britian - Welcome to STITCH with the Embroiderers' Guild.

I started buying the beading mag when I took a peyote beading class. So many beautiful designs. So little time.

And Stitch - wow. Why can't the Americans have a guild magazine like this?

Thursday, March 02, 2006

Agnes Scott

This is a photo of my Agnes Scott sampler by With My Needle. This was the 3rd or 4th project chosen by the Internet Sampler Band (which has since moved on to a different format and name) which was being run by Ellen Chester. Look we chose one her designs!

This poor thing has been an unloved UFO for the past year.

I dug it out on Sunday and have stitched from the crowns over to the middle. Ah Au Ver A Soie on Glenshee. What a pleasure.

I was stitching this in hand, but went and bought 24" scroll rods as there is just too much material for me to keep going on that way.

I will go back later and do the satin stitch that belongs in the arcaded band below the ABCs. Posted by Picasa

Wednesday, March 01, 2006

Agnes Scott

My Agnes Scott sampler was resurrected from the UFO pile this weekend. I pulled her out and spent some time going over the pattern details and what I had stitched. It's been at least a year since I've stitched on her for which I feel terrible. She doesn't deserve that fate.

I put Cormac McCarthy's "All the Pretty Horses" in my Walkman and put on the headphones as DS was having himself an XBox marathon and it's tough stitching to Band of Brothers, any Star Wars game, or NHL Hockey.

I have been meaning to read All the Pretty Horses for quite some time. I was just reminded of it by some saying it was one of the favorite books. So when DH finally went to check out our local library I picked it up on CD. It is unfortunately abridged. But I did manage to stitch and listen for nearly 2 hours before deciding I had better think about supper.

Once I recharge the camera battery I will post a pic of my Agnes Scott progress.

need another cup of coffee

DH is in Hawaii and I never sleep that well the first few days he's gone. Tonight should be better. And he calls me yesterday just to say hi and that he has a few minutes to kill so he's watching the surfers off Wakiki...


He'll be home at the end of the week 9 hours ahead of the college girl.