Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Maybe I Shall

spend the day stitching on Agnes Scott. Oh. Wait the sun is shining - I should go take a picture! And here it is!

There is still satin stitch to be done on the second band.

Re: A's Comment

LOL - hysterically!


I was talking to my MIL last weekend about how we missed the boat on him being a page - we were living in NY at the time and it just didn't occur to us to have him apply to the congressional page program. (They do this their junior year.) Then I said maybe it was a good thing. He might have gotten a certain congressman...

Monday, January 29, 2007

I'm in Love

with Agnes Scott. I'll have to take her picture and post it here. I had forgotton how much I like this piece. Didn't get much stitched on her today because I've been cleaning the kitchen ceiling before painting. The last people in this house may not have done much cooking, but at least one of them was a smoker. And I know they didn't clean or paint or kitchen. Most likely the last time the ceiling was cleaned was 2001-02. Ugh. I think my arm is ready to fall off.

But the real fun of today will be later. When I pick up my son. Who has joined the ranks of commuters. He has the unique opportunity of interning for a US Senator on Capitol Hill while still in high school. I can hardly wait to hear the stories. Today was his first day.

Saturday, January 27, 2007


Where in the world is this impulse to stitch UFOs coming from? After already finishing 2 projects in January, yesterday I picked up my Agnes Scott sampler by With My Needle. I last stitched on this at an EGA meeting and put it down because I knew I had a line of stitching to frog - thread had knotted on the back and I didn't notice it till I was at the end of a long piece of silk thread. Yesterday I frogged that. Restitched it. And continued on with the border. Spent sometime looking over my previous stitching and what is still to come. I am about 40% finished with this. There is some satin stitching that I have chosen to do later. I like doing the satin at the end of the project so it all lays beautifully flat.

Friday, January 26, 2007

Hand-painted canvas

This is my canvas that I painted, myself. No kidding. Thanks to Anna at the Scarlet Thread. Her design colors are in the purples, but I wanted pinks. I'm amazed at how easy the painting part was.

Round Robin Finish

This is a Judith Kirby design from 1988. I purchased it in 1996 which was the year this round robin was done. Of course, once it came back to me with one square not finished and the border incomplete, I never, ever once picked it back up. Until 2 weeks ago. To the ladies from the Xtrafun floss exchange group that was on AOL's cross stitch boards who participated in this round robin, thank you.

Now this sampler is a little too country for me. But I think if I had it framed, I could hang it in a bathroom.

That's another UFO monkey off my back!

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Round Robin UFO

I completed the border last night and started stitching the last motif - the train station. The sun is shining today so I can finally take a decent picture.

Am contemplating volunteering to work the Woodlawn show in March. Maybe I should get a job first so I know my schedule before committing?

Monday, January 22, 2007

Everything is White This A.M.

so we got a little snow. A couple of inches at most. Two hour delay for school.


they never went out to salt or sand the roads. Which are now totally ice covered.

We crawled at 5 m.p.h. to school. I wanted to go to the hardware store, but I'm not trying that with all these people who don't know how to drive in the winter. (Being a New Hampshire type, my winter driving skills are impeccable.)

Will eventually head to the grocery store 'cause someone forgot to tell me he used the last garbage bag.

And yes. Though the Patriots lost, it was a fun game to watch. Now, go Bears!

Saturday, January 20, 2007

Food instead of stitching

Okay. Today I did finish kitting up Lynne Nicollet's Posieden = everything except the fabric. I'm waiting till tomorrow morning when I can do that in the sunlight.

I was appalled at what I found at my local Micheal's. I had decided instead of going through all my floss for the 27 skeins of DMC, that I would take advantage of a sale and go buy some new stuff. At my Michael's the floss is in trays, in rows, but totally out of order. With many colors missing. Mixed in the regular DMC, was DMC rayon and Perle cottons. I bounced all over trying to find the 27 skeins I needed. I felt lucky to have located 23 of them. I had the other 4 at home. Had also bought the beads and Kreinik previously.

Of course my Michaels is right near a Whole Foods. And I was looking for fish for supper. We ended up with quite an elegant little meal. Organic baby romaine with asiago and cracked peppercorn dressing. Lemon sole with tarrogon butter. And parsleyed rice with an aged organic Gouda cheese. A nice unprentenious CA chardonnay from Modesto = Corq Dorq. Nice name. And brownies for desert. 'Cause a meal like that calls for chocolate.

Now to decide what to eat tomorrow night for the all important Patriots/Colts game.

Thursday, January 18, 2007

Fibers, Wonderful Fibers

I forgot to post about a trip to Needlewoman East in Falls Church. This was a trip to select fibers for the needlepoint canvas I painted in December. Though we painted shades of purple, my original intent was to make my flowers pink. I had the shop owner helping me and we couldn't find a run of five shades of purple in silk. I started looking at pink and the selection was even slimmer. Until she remembered that she had some Vineyard Silk from Wiltex in Boston. Sure enough, five shades of pink in the same family. Picking the browns for the stems was simpler. The leaf colors were a bit more difficult, but we managed. For the background I have off-whites in silk/wool blend and my accent stitching will be Rainbow Gallery's Mandarin which is made from bamboo.

I got excited. Came home. Put the canvas on the stretcher bars and started to stitch with the Vineyard Silk. Wow. That stuff is the slickest silk I've used.

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

No Stitching Yesterday

But I did find an appropriate substitute for some pale yellow rayon needed for Lynne Nicolletti's "Neptune." I picked a yellow silk, which will give that little bit of sheen. I still need to find the beads and pick the fabric for this project.

Also bought some 18ct brown canvas because I've always meant to stitch Mary Beale's "Boston Tea Party" tea cosy.

I've got a huge inventory of projects that are kitted, or partially kitted. And I feel excited about stitching again.

Friday, January 12, 2007


Yesterday morning, while waiting for DD to get ready for shopping, I did a little organizing of stitching items. I have a habit of buying supplies/stash and then letting the bags pile up till it all begs to be taken care of.

The box of items completely or partially kitted up which also now contains UFOs, is overflowing. But at least they are all together. Of course, I located fibers that I know I purchased for projects, but no longer remember which projects. So those are now with the rest of the fibers and hopefully if I decided to do those particular projects, I will look in my big box of fiber fun before heading off to shop. On the fabric front, things are not that bad. I know there are two cuts of linen that belong to some project. Oh well. I've got a tremendous stash of small cuts of linens and should really stitch some ornaments to use them up.

But the funny thing is a picked out one of my oldest UFOs to work on. I was ruthless last year and ditched several projects that I know I would never, ever work on again. No guilt in that, just relief.

Which makes my current project as of yesterday - a round robin project from 1996. I had this chart that was divided into 9 squares - it's a New England sampler designed by Judith Kirby. The middle square has a saying, the other 8 are buildings like a train station and flower shop. Seven of the eight people in my round robin did their job. Which means I still have a train station to stitch and the border to finish. It's on 18ct cream Aida. I remember stitching hearts, flowers, teddy bears, birds, etc. for others in the round robin. I have the initials of the participants. And am going to see if I've got names written down anywhere. They're not in my stitching journal unfortunately. But I was working on this the same time as my Newburyport Sampler and may have an old email or two printed out in my sampler book.

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

first finish 2007

My UFO Kreinik Kit - black and white kitty face - 40 ct. silk gauze with silk Mori - looks like our Zoe but with a fatter face - I changed the eyes from green to golden yellow

Tuesday, January 09, 2007

a little s.e.x.

Was dropping 19 year old DD off at a friend's yesterday and we had a little time to kill first. I talked her into a quick side trip to In Stitches in Alexandria. Where I promptly set her off on maybe a lifetime of stitching. She has resisted all attempts in the past. But a friend of hers knits and she learned from her grandmother, and now my daughter thinks it's cool to learn something like this. Her intention was to learn to crochet from me. But the siren song of all those cross stitch patterns was strong.

After much deliberating - many things too hard, simpe things too simple - she settled on M Designs "Dream." We decided to change the colors and picked out a skein of Silk N Colours that is mostly green with a tiny shot of blue. Found the appropriate beads and will pick fabric from my stash today when she comes home. And this is how it starts...

I only purchased one thing for me - it was on sale - and if you haven't looked at this lady's stuff, you should. I got the Lemon Meringue sampler and have printed off a copy a this month's freebie about chocolate covered cherries. So check out Casey Buonaugurio at

Monday, January 08, 2007

It's Back

The weather has returned to what is passing for winter this year. Gray, dreary 50s. Reminds me of my three long winters in Germany. The 73 degree day we had on Saturday was terrific. But like many people it makes me wonder. The record temperature for January here in the DC area was 79 and it was set in the 1970s. So I won't panic yet that the whole region is going under water due to melting ice caps from global warming.
But days like this sap all initiative from me and make me want to curl up with a good book.

Which brings me to what I am currently reading - Julie Powell's book "Julie and Julia."
I am thinking that it's slightly strange that just as this woman was discovering blogging and deciding to write about cooking her way through Mastering the Art of French Cooking, I was also beginning my blog. And discovering a renewed appreciation for Julia Child.

I bought a used copy of Mastering the Art a few years ago in an antique shop. Fascinating reading. Many recipes that I'd never touch - not a big fan of kidneys, liver, heart, tongue, brains, etc. But reading about someone else cooking these recipes has me considering that maybe I should branch out. I've also found a used copy the French Chef cookbook, which brings back many memories from my youth of watching Julia on WGBH out of Boston. I think the show where she deboned an entire turkey and then tied it back up to look like a turkey totally intimidated me. That's when I decided that though I was gaining competence as a cook, I could never begin to approach cooking like Julia.

Then a few years back, I discovered Julia's Rein de Saba cake (Queen of Sheba) and had a minor epiphany. I had the ability to follow her recipes and that there was gold in them ther' books.

This past fall I read Julia's autobiography, My Life in France. Jealous. What I was was jealous. I wanted to be her. I wanted to be there in Paris and Marseilles and all those wonderful places. To smell that food and drink that wine.

But as I can not, I will settle for occasionally cooking a Julia recipe. Maybe not the brains, but I suppose I could try calves liver once.

I Admit

To watching football yesterday. I thought I was through with this, but the Patriots dragged me back in...I did stitch on my needlepoint purse and crocheted on my lap rug. At least I didn't just sit there.

And booyah! I got my brain age down to 20. First person in the house.

Friday, January 05, 2007

From Thanksgiving Weekend

This is my son and I walking on beach at Assateague Island. A big storm had blown through the day before Thanksgiving and you couldn't drive the beach road. But you could park beside the road and walk to the beach. Which we did. They had had snowplows moving sand off the road, but still had a lot of clean-up to do.

Black Forest

This is a photo of my progress on the Goode Huswife's Black Forest. I have worked on it some since taking the photo. I have now figured out that my problem with posting photos here lies with my desktop computer. Now to figure out the exact problem and fix it.

Someone's Hiding

This year the kitties did not get under the tree at all before presents appeared there. But after the presents were opened, Elvis found plenty of room.

Current Projects

1) the black and white cat face Kreinik kit on silk gauze. I admit
this is making me blind. But it's 75% finished and I am determined.
I have also found silk that is more the color of our cat's eyes - she has yelowy
golden, not green eyes.

2) The Goode Huswife's "The Black Forest" which is stitched on black.
Another project which is taxing my eyes. But I love the colors. It's
maybe 25% finished. Why did this designer stop designing? Makes me sad.
I have emailed myself a photo of this and will try posting from the laptop
instead of the desktop.

3) An Alice Peterson Stitch and Zip needlepoint purse - this is a
small project destined to hold my Nintendo DS Lite. Because it's
needlepoint I can see it just fine. Even at night!

4) The Kreinik kit - Remember the Ladies - "Abigail's Wisdom." This is
a UFO I picked up. I know 2 other people who have it. Still looking for people interested in forming a support group for stitching this. I am determined that it should be finished this year. Only right as they swore in the first female speaker of the house yesterday.

Tuesday, January 02, 2007

No Stitching

On New Year's Day. Or today either. But all the Christmas decorations are put away except for a few candles and table runners. That's a plus.

But I'm dead tired being back on a normal schedule. Did manage to stay awake on New Year's Eve, which some years doesn't happen for me. I hate going out on NYEve as there are far too many drunk people out driving. (Grandmother killed by a drunk driver when I was six. I won't ride in a VW bug either.)

We went out tonight to Sweetwater Tavern for DH's birthday. His choice. I had 2 Wild West Fest Lagers and now I'm yawning.