Friday, July 31, 2015

Reading Challenge - July

I slowed down a bit in July and ended up reading The Princess Diaries series because the library was having a special book club party for the new Royal Wedding book.  It was a fun series to read but I skipped from book 5 to the new book.

The Wanderer by Sharon Creech - Sophie travels with her uncles and cousins on a boat over the Atlantic.
The Dark-Thirty: Southern Tales of the Supernatural by Patricia C. McKissak - An interesting collection of African American folktales from the American south.
Julie of the Wolves by Jean Craighead George - Julie is an Eskimo who runs away from an arranged marriage and is adopted by wolves.
Forgive Us Our Sins: Homosexuality in Light of the Bible by Richard D. Starr - A summary of what the Bible says about homosexuality co-written by a pastor and a man who lived most of his life as a homosexual.
Locomotion by Jacqueline Woodson - A novel in poetic form about a boy who lost his parents in a fire and copes with living with a foster parent.
Shiloh by Phillis Reynolds Naylor - A Newbery winner about a boy who rescues and hides a dog form his abusive master.
Shabanu Daughter of the Wind by Suzanne Fisher Staples - Shabanu is the daughter of a camel herder who is preparing for her older sister's wedding.
An Unwelcome Quest by Scott Meyer - Magic 2.0 series book 3.  Todd, a wizard who was exiled by the others, returns and traps some of the wizards in a computer simulation.
Homesick: My Own Story by Jean Fritz - Based on actual experiences, Jean is an American girl growing up in China.
Eleanor Roosevelt: A Life of Discovery by Russell Freedman - A nonfiction children's book about the famous first lady.
A Visit to William Blake's Inn by Nancy Willard - A collection of poems based on the works of William Blake.
Sugaring Time by Kathryn Lasky - A picture book about the process of making maple syrup.
Go Set a Watchman by Harper Lee - The "original" To Kill a Mockingbird with an adult Jean Louise is ok but needs editing.
Anpao: An American Indian Odyssey  by Jamake Hightower - A novel composed of different Native American legends woven together written by a man who apparently claims to be Native American but may not actually be Native American.
The Lunar Chronicles by Marissa Meyer
--Cinder - Linh Cinder is a cyborg who has a chance encounter with the prince in this sci fi/robot version of Cinderella.
--Scarlet - Cinder is on the run but meanwhile, in France, Scarlet is dealing with her grandmother's disappearance and the appearance of the mysterious Wolf.
The Princess Diaries by Meg Cabot
--The Princess Diaries - Mia finds out that she is the only heir to the throne of Genovia.
--Princess in the Spotlight - Mia finds out that her mother is pregnant and prepares for a huge televised interview.
--Princess in Love - Mia has a secret admirer but is he the same guy as her crush?
--Princess in Waiting - Mia spends her Christmas in Genovia but all she can think of is her new boyfriend.
--Princess in Pink - Mia wants to go to prom with Michael but he doesn't want to go.
--Royal Wedding - The 11th volume, Mia is now an adult and still dating Michael while the press hounds them about not getting married.

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

"Sweet" Treats

I decided it was time to make one of my Victoria Sampler cupcakes.  I don't do a lot of Hardanger, so I had to look up how to do the Kloster blocks and Blanket stitch.  I got the first one finished today.  The actual making of the cupcake will be much more difficult.

Gingerbread Cupcake
Victoria Sampler Beautiful Finishing Series
28 ct. Gingerbread linen by Picture This Plus
DMC Pearle Cotton 8 and 12 and NPI Silk
Beads/buttons from Accessory Pack

Sunday, July 26, 2015

Weekend stitching

I was able to do some stitching today.  Here's my progress on "Jingle as Ye Enter"

Next, awhile back, I bought some fabric from SCRAP with the intent of making a super hero cape for my oldest (Zoé).  I was finally able to get it done today.  Working with the Satin was a pain but I think it looks great.  And it passed my biggest critic's test.

Friday, July 24, 2015

My Daughter is in Love!

In November, around Thanksgiving as student teaching and my whole degree plan were winding down, I started a cute little blanket for my youngest daughter.  I've done two scarves for Zoé but nothing for Adèle, so I figured it was time.

Well, I finally finished it today.  I almost was not allowed to do the borders on it because she wanted it!  I changed the colors on the original pattern (it was more "boy" colors) and omitted the feet because I didn't like how they looked.

Snuggling with Pooh and her new blankie
Here's a picture of the blanket without the model

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Stitch from Stash - July Update

Month: July
Amount Spent: $7.98
Amount Earned: $12

Stitch from Stash starts over.  Can't believe that July is almost over.  Soon, it will be school time again which will either mean that I get a break from the kids or I will start work.  Not sure which one yet.  I had a job interview today so we'll see.

I decided to make a change in how I do WIPs.  My WIP basket was full to bursting and I always had issues trying to choose what to stitch.  Meanwhile, I have an HAED and another solidly stitched piece that will take years of work and probably need to be worked on more.  So, I decided to pull one piece besides the two large pieces to work.  My current "wildcard" is "Jingle as Ye Enter."

I had two finishes:

Peace - The Stitcherhood
Do Not Meddle - Dragon Fire Designs - My oldest WIP!
And here is the work on my three WIPs

HAED - Butterfly Rose Cross
Snow White Discovers the Cottage

Jingle As Ye Enter - Victorian Motto Sampler Shoppe

Monday, July 20, 2015

Some Finished Work **Edit - There's more!**

I finally finished "Tweet Gift" today.  Here's a picture.

Let me just say that metallic thread is a pain in a sewing machine.  Got it to work ok after finding a few tips online about adjusting the needle and tension.  Eternally thanking Brother for including the right sized needle in the kit that came with my Project Runway machine.

Later on, I decided to tackle "Shining in the Night."  I had my first run in with invisible thread.  I think it turned out quite well.

Thursday, July 16, 2015

A Trip to Jo-Ann's

I haven't had a lot of stitching time recently but I got a little bit of stitching done on Snow White.

I hit Jo-Ann today to get some metallic sewing thread for finishing Tweet Gift.

I also found a very interesting "invisible thread" that I thought I would try for assembling some pieces.

We've been spending some time in the mornings before it gets too hot playing outside.

Sunday, July 12, 2015

Current progress

I've been working on my three current WIPs a bit this week.

Thursday, July 9, 2015

Change in WIPs

I have a large number of WIPs at the moment, due to the fact that I started a bunch of pieces en mass a few years ago.  You can see all of them if you click the "Long Term Projects" tab at the top of the blog.

I decided I needed to narrow my focus so I cleaned out the stitching basket and put in both solidly stitched pieces I have, which will both take years to finish (Snow White and my HAED) and added one more other piece which I will rotate out as I get bored or finish it.  The current piece I have chosen is "Jingle As Ye Enter" by Victoria Motto Sampler Shoppe.

I got a bit of stitching done on it yesterday and added a bird.  Nancy is giving away another kit of it as part of her Christmas in July.  Such a nice lady.  I didn't enter (since I already have it) but you can.

It was a kit so she included her hand dyed floss which is wonderful to work with.  
Nancy has several other giveaways going.  I'm hoping for the $25 gift certificate myself but she is also giving away a sampler, her hand-dyed fabric and a bunch of her hand-dyed floss.  There's still time to enter.  

Who am I kidding, I'll take it all!

Tuesday, July 7, 2015

Solid Stitching

I decided to work on my two "solid" pieces the last few days.  I put about 300 stitches into my HAED and at least that many into my Kinkade piece.  Of course, it doesn't look like much.  I may take some advice off my Ravelry group and grid over to where the color action is on the HAED.

Justine asked what my next oldest WIP is.  I believe it's this piece here which I'm not sure I'm ever going to finish.  I started it for a friend and then severe morning sickness prevented me from working much on it and I really have no desire to finish it at the moment.  At least with "Do Not Meddle," I actually still was interested in the finished piece.

Sunday, July 5, 2015

Today, We Say Farewell...

....To the oldest WIP in my stash!

I started this piece in 2007 or 2008.  I am pretty sure that it was after the death of my father but while I was still living at home.  I had recently discovered that there were LNSs that weren't Michael's, Hobby Lobby or Jo-Ann and I saw "Do Not Meddle" while I was at this LNS over by State Fair Park in Milwaukee (I fear the shop has closed since then).  I was in my fantasy phase, so I picked it up along with some nice sparkly opalescent fabric.

Yes, it's out of print.  No, you can't have my pattern. Try eBay.
I started the piece with vim and vigor and got all the lettering done.  Then, I started on the dragons and two things happened:  life and a major stitching mistake.

I blogged a little bit about that over at Stitching The Night Away.

This piece is sort of like Mel's Dragons over at Epic Stitching.  Hers took about 7.5 years.  Mine took between 7-8 years.  Mine is nowhere near as complicated as hers though.

Since I've started this piece, I've...

  • Eloped
  • Moved from WI to TX
  • Moved twice within TX
  • Had two children
  • Had both those children get diagnosed with Autism
  • Been involved in a mass layoff
  • Got my MA in teaching with teaching certificate
Without further adieu, here is what the finished piece looks like:

Do Not Meddle
Dragon Fire Designs
28 ct. Opalescent evenweave
I will have to go frame shopping soon.  I have plenty of foam board now.

Friday, July 3, 2015


Having finished my ornament, I looked around trying to decide what I wanted to do next.  I looked through my stitching basket and finally settled on trying to at last actually finish "Do Not Meddle."  Once I started, I realized, there's not actually much left.  This is the last major page.  Just a bit of tail left after this is finished.

I got the outline done.  This page is much less complex compared to the wing so I didn't grid it.

And then, I started filling in shades of green. 
After this page, there's just a bit of tail work and it will be all done!  I can't wait.

Thursday, July 2, 2015

A finish

I finished the ornament for my friend.  For her privacy, I will not post a picture of the back.  It is double sided like many of my other Aida frayed ornaments.  I put the deceased's full name and the years of his life.

Peace - The Stitcherhood
Just Cross Stitch Ornaments 2013
Modifications: added blending filament to the flame and snowflakes, changed text