cross stitch · Knitted Shawl · Knitting · Mermaids · mystery sampler · New stash! · Sampler · yarn

Happy Valentine’s Day!!


Hello my blogging friends, and Happy Valentine’s Day!  I hope you have a wonderful day however you celebrate this loving day.  I can’t believe it’s February!  I have been so busy and the days have just gotten away from me.  I had so many days I wanted to post, and just didn’t get to it. So, this one may be a long one.  Grab your favorite beverage and get comfy.

I suppose I should start with my birthday, that happened near the end of January.  To celebrate, Hubby took me to a winery about 1 1/2 hours from our house.  They just so happened to be having a Winter Wine and Wool festival the weekend of my birthday and I had decided that is what I wanted to do.

Winery sign

I was so excited to get there after the drive.  If you know me, you know I don’t like being in a car on the highway.  So nerve wracking.

Wine tasting room

This was my first time to an actual winery.  This one was a very sweet, inviting place. Once inside, I made my way to the yarn and bag vendors.  It was a very small place for an event like this.  There was almost no room to get up and down the hallways.  So I searched out the 2 main booths I wanted to shop at.

AJHC yarn booth

So many scrumptious yarns! See that yellow/orange and red cowl on the left?  I picked up some mini skeins to make that.  And a few other skeins to make a shawl.

Yarn stash from winery

Then I found the MidMitten Designs Project Bag Booth and purchased a bag and some small notions bags.

Me at Midmitten Bags booth

Midmitten bag

Love this new Sassy Style bag!  There is already a project in it 😉  Then is was time for some wine tasting.

me wine tasting

Winery

This was a Raspberry wine, perfect to pair with chocolate!  Hello!!  I came home with a bottle of this one and a Meade wine.  Hubby spoiled me so much for my birthday.  It was not so bad turning 55 😉

If you remember from one of my previous posts, we found out that we have to have our basement waterproofed.  So hubby and I have been going through things, donating things, pitching things and putting things aside for our boys and hauling it all up and out to the garage.  We have done quite a bit, but we are not going to be ready for the end of February, so we have moved it to April 1 with the contractor coming to remove the drywall and carpet the last week in March.  I can’t believe how much we have accumulated in the 23  years we have been here.  So we are still working on that a little at a time and in between, I am still stitching.  So, lots to show you with that.  First, I finished the Treasures of the Deep SAL.

Mermaid SAL finished

Sorry about the blurry photo.  Just couldn’t capture it right.  But it is finished with all the hundreds of tiny beads.  I have to admit, that looking at it from a certain angle, it looks a bit gaudy, but then from another angle it looks beautiful and sparkly.

close of december mermaid

I stayed up until 1:00 in the morning to finish it so I could take it to the cross stitch shop to put it in for framing.  Here is the frame I chose for it:

Frame for mermaid SAL.jpg

I was not going to go with a gold frame, but nothing else seemed to work.  I think this one will be perfect.  And while I was there, a framing was ready to be picked up.

2018 Mystery Sampler framed

I absolutely LOVE how this turned out!!  So beautiful.  The frame is so perfect, too.

Frame for 2018 sampler

The weathering on this one matches perfectly with the variegated threads.  Now I will need to find a place to hang this one, so I can see it all the time.

While in the cross stitch shop, I was inspired to start a new project; the 2019 Mystery Sampler.  I had already ordered a piece of Graceful Gray 16ct Aida by Wichelt, which was there for me to pick up.  On my last trip I had picked up a smaller piece of the fabric and a pink silk thread. I started stitching the peacock, but the pink was too light for the fabric.  So I hadn’t thought anymore about color, until I was in the shop.  And I saw the beautiful variegated thread that I thought would be perfect for a “Peacock Garden”, which is what the new sampler is called.  The thread is Gloriana, a silk and the color is called Rain Forest.  How perfect!!

Threads for 2019 Mystery Sampler

I will use it for the borders. So I picked out a color that matched for my peacock.  And this is what happened:

2019 Mystery Sampler start

And look at that! I am using a Q-snap frame :O I am cringing that my aida fabric will be pretty wrinkled.  I am not used to that with using a scroll frame.  But I used this for the beading the last half of my mermaid SAL so I didn’t roll over the beads, and it worked pretty good.  So I thought I would try it for this Mystery Sampler.  Here is what the January and February sections will look like for this sampler:

2019 Peacock garden

It is different than the last 2 samplers.  This one reminds me more of a Round Robin.  I can’t wait to see what will end up in all of those squares.  If you want to get in on this sampler (or the last 2) they are all FREE and put out by Linen and Threads.  So sweet of them to do this.  There is also a Facebook group where people from all over the world are stitching this and sharing and connecting.  It’s awesome.

Now for my last project.  On February 6, I started this project and was so excited:

Floral shawl first start

By the end of the day, I was so frustrated with this project.  It is the Floral Shawl from Woolenberry.  I was just not coming up with the correct amount of stitches at the end of row 7.  I knitted back several times, ripped out several times, and then just gave up.  Then I decided to leave a comment on Ravelry for the designer to see if there was an update or to figure out what I was doing wrong.  So after several emailings back and forth with the Sweet Janina Kallio, I kept trying.  I arrived at row twenty something and thought I was doing well.  My floral pattern didn’t really look right and I was still concerned about the yo ssk knit 3.  It just wasn’t feeling right.  I was ending up with a yo after the ssk.  Anyway, a light bulb finally went off in my head yesterday and I finally figured out what I was doing wrong.  I was knitting the ssk on the front needle instead of the back needle.  What was I thinking?  I knew better. All I can say is that it was a very senior moment.  And after a week of frustration, I am happy to say that I am all straightened out and I have the correct stitch count and my floral pattern is looking lovely.  I am using AJHC Wool’s Rhea.

Floral Shawl start

If you look in the bag, I am almost up to the frogged strands.

So there you have it.  I told you it would be a long post.  I think I am all caught up now.  If you are still with me, thank you 🙂  That is just about everything I have been up to.  So now I want to hear what you have been up to? Have you started a new project? If not,  what are you working on?

 

cross stitch · knitted cowl · Mermaids · Shannon Christine designs · WIP · yarn

Stitching My Blues Away


Hello my blogging friends!  We are only midway through January and so far the new year is not looking so good for me 😦   A couple of months ago I found a dark line along with a white line on our basement carpet.  Either hubby and I are in the basement just about everyday, but we couldn’t find the carpet wet.  Two weeks ago, I finally found it wet along the line, like a crack in the concrete line.  Oh No!  I just knew it was our foundation.  Last week we had the experts in and sure enough our foundation has been compromised.  As well as a crack in the block wall in the room where our well tank and water softener is.  So, we will need to have our basement waterproofed, which entails digging a trench around the perimeter of the basement, setting a sump pump into the floor and wrapping the walls from floor to ceiling, and pouring a new floor.  This also means that we will have to get everything out of our (finished) basement and storage room, have someone come in and tear off all the dry wall, wall mirrors and carpet, have the foundation specialists do their waterproofing and then having the guy come back and put dry wall back up.  During all of this our well tank will have to be unhooked and moved, so not sure how long we will be without water. We are also having new gutters installed, which is probably why we are in this position now.  Limited gutters on the house.  Then there is the task of painting the new drywall and getting new carpet.  And figuring out where we will put everything from the basement until we can get it all finished again.  Ugh. This process will start around the last week of February.  So not looking forward to it.  So, with this big expense, I am definitely looking to my WIP’s and stash to keep me busy for a long time.  So, here is what I have been up to, trying to keep my mind off of what is to come.

van goh pillow

I have been commissioned to do this pillow, so I started it on January 6.  It is definitely not something I would have chosen for myself. It has a color chart, which I absolutely hate and so much confetti stitching.  I have already had to rip several sections out and put them back.  I am blaming the color chart on this one 😉  It is being stitched on 11ct Aida, so I am hoping it will go quick, but so far it has been rather slow.  The 15th of January didn’t come soon enough so I could put this down and pick up this:

mermaid sal jan

Yesterday the last mermaid for this SAL came out and I had a start on her last night.  She is the January mermaid and I think she is my favorite.  Maybe because she is my birth month, or maybe because it is the last one.  Once I finish her, I still have all the beading to do and I just know it will be so sparkly and beautiful!  This was a very fun stitch for the year and I looked forward to each new mermaid every month. This is a Shannon Christine design and was put out by Fiberlicious.  The fabric is 16ct Aida Maldivian Dreams by Fiberlicious.  If you wanted to get in on this one, you may still be able to, not sure.  After the SAL, I do know that the charts will go up in price.

And lastly, I have been knitting on my travel cowl when I get the chance. And yesterday I had a chance to knit several rows while hubby had a little out patient procedure done .  He is doing well today.

teal and pink tweed cowl

I am using the Funny Rainbow pattern by Katia again.  The yarn is Kettle Tweed in Winter Blossom colorway.  I think this will look great with jeans and a black top.  I can’t wait to finish it.  Hopefully before winter is over.  It not, I will have it for next year.

So that is what I have been up to, trying to keep my mind off of other things.  I am really looking forward to Spring now.  The basement will be done and hopefully all back in place and warmer weather will be here.  So what have to you been doing so far this year?  I’d love to hear about it 🙂

cross stitch · Knitting · Legos · mystery sampler

Happy New Year!


Happy 2019!!  I wish for everyone a very happy, healthy and loving New Year!  I am looking forward to having a great year.  I did not make any New Years Resolutions list this year, as most of the time I failed and did not want to set myself up for failure this year.  There are things I want to do, accomplish and finish, but if I don’t do them this year, there is always the next, right?

I already have my first finish for 2019.  I tried my best to get it done by midnight on New Years Eve, but I just couldn’t get it done.  I frantically stitched from 9:00-midnight, but was still hours away from a finish. So I finished it on the night of January 1st.  Here it is:

mystery-sampler-finished.jpg

I am so happy with how this one turned out.  This photo really doesn’t do it justice.  The fabric is a beautiful 16ct Aida peach with gray, hand dyed by Johanna from Fantasy Dyed Fabrics.  I stitched with DMC 53 and DMC 310.  The pattern sections are still available from Linen and Threads as well as the 2017 one and the first section of the 2019 Mystery Sampler.  I haven’t fully decided if I want to do another year long sampler, but the first section is beautiful and I look forward to seeing more.

And I have to share a wonderful gift I received on Christmas from my sweet husband.

addi needles

A set of Addi knitting needles.  I have 2 addi circulars and I LOVE stitching with them.  There is nothing like knitting with these metal needles.  They just glide so wonderfully!  I was with him when he purchased them at the knitting store just a few days before Christmas as he didn’t know if I would like the short needles or the longer ones.  Definitely the longer ones 🙂

New Year’s Day was earmarked as Lego Day, and so I created this:

lighthouse legos

The Friends’ Heartlake  Lighthouse 🙂  I had a nice lego day 🙂

I am getting back to stitching on the mermaid SAL and will post my progress soon.  That is what I have been up to.  I’d love to hear what you have been up to?

cross stitch · Knitting · Passione Ricamo · Sampler

What’s New In My Stitching World


Hello my blogging friends!  Here it is, Christmas Eve.  Are you all ready for the big day?  I am.  Though I blew off baking today to take my Mom to do some last minute shopping she forgot. I also spent some time with both of my boys this morning, so that is always good.  Later today I will be going to the movies with hubby and #1 son.  Then relaxing for the rest of the night.  I must say, that getting all of my holiday stuff done a little early to have relaxing time is a must.  I have to try this every year 😉

Yesterday I did laundry and started knitting myself a hat.

knitting new hat

I casted on this chunky hat using size 11 and 15 needles.  I used Malabrigo Rasta in color Almond Blossom.  I have never made myself a hat before and after going to the zoo last week to see the Wild Lights, I realized I needed a winter hat.  So a few hours later, this is what resulted:

my knitted hat

It is so soft and such a pretty peachy pink color!  All it needs is a pom pom, but I don’t think this yarn will make a good pom pom.  So I will head back to the knitting shop after Christmas and see about getting a pom pom maker and figure out a yarn to make one with.

Me wearing my new hat

And here is me wearing my new chunky hat. It looks ok without the pom pom, too.  The pattern is the Chunky Cabled hat by Destiny Meyer and it is on Ravelry in case you are interested.  This will definitely keep me warm for the rest of the winter and next year when we go to see the lights at the zoo again.

Zoo lights

Us in a lighted Christmas ornament

This years big attraction was this larger than life lighted ornament that we had our picture taken in.  So pretty.

This weekend I picked up this beauty from the framer:

Pink-Princess-framed.jpg

I love the frame I chose and think she is beautiful!  I am hoping to hang my Pink Princess in my craft room this weekend.

I am still working on the Mystery Sampler from Linen and Thread and am hoping to get the December section done by the end of the month.  Here is where I left it yesterday:

mystery sampler december section

This section has been a little difficult for me to figure out where I want what color of the thread to lay where.  So I am just winging it.  So far it seems to be ok.  I hope to post a finish of the entire piece soon 😉

So that is where my stitching has stopped for now.  Going to go and enjoy some time with my family. Wishing you a very Merry Christmas if you are celebrating.  And I hope that you able to get some stitchy time in, too.  I’d love to hear all about what you are stitching these days 🙂

Crochet · cross stitch · Hand Dyed Fabrics · Passione Ricamo

Pink Makes Me Happy


I’m not in the best of moods, but seeing my pink stitching makes me smile.  So I finally got around to blocking that knitted baby blanket I finished a little while back.

Knitted baby blanket being blocked

I’m not sure if I stretched it a bit too much, but it looked so beautiful all stretched out.  And then I found a mistake.  Can you see it?  Well, there isn’t anything I can do about it now, so I have accepted that it is part of its charm.

knitted baby blanket 1

My hearts are a bit wonky, but I think it turned out rather lovely.  It looks so sweet hanging over the couch.  Maybe someday it will wrap around a sweet little one.

knitted baby blanket 3

For now I will put it away for a special someone.

I have been working on the Pink Princess, and here is how she looks today.

Pink Princess progress 3

She is coming along beautifully and she really makes me smile when I look at her.  All of those beautiful shades of pink!  And her black hair is stunning with the pink.  I won’t be stitching the wings, so I am getting close to finishing the stitching.  Then I will be on to the back stitching and beading.  I purchased a butterfly bead 3 years ago when I first started stitching this one, but I can’t seem to find it.  So I had better get to looking today so that I can decide if I will stitch the butterfly in her hand or not.  For those seeing her for the first time, she is Dawn, the Fairy Spirit of Grace by Passione Ricamo.  I am stitching her on 16ct Tintagel from Fabrics by Stephanie.  Love this fabric!  It is so perfect for my Pink Princess, having just the right amount of pink scattered here and there.

And I picked up my crocheting yesterday to see how my elbows would do.

Spicier life blanket 3.jpg

My elbows did ok, but I could feel them getting achy just after a few rows, so I stopped.  I had a bit of a problem with the popcorn row.  The popcorn puffs were quite easy.  I was only supposed to have 23 and I ended up with 24 😦  So much for my lesson.  I pulled it out a couple of times and recounted stitches in the row before.  I seemed to have the correct amount and just couldn’t figure it out, so I left the 24 popcorns and moved on.  I was so frustrated, I was ready to toss it in the garbage.  Instead, I threw it into a heap on my basket.  The right elbow is still sore today, so not sure when I will pick it up again.  I may have to wait until next week and make another trip to see the crochet expert.

So tomorrow is Thanksgiving.  I am having mixed emotions about the day, hence my moodiness.   If you are celebrating this holiday tomorrow, I wish you a wonderful day with family and friends.  If you are not celebrating, I wish you a wonderful day 🙂

Crochet · cross stitch · Hand Dyed Fabrics · Knitted Shawl · vacation · yarn

Getting Caught Up and Yarn Organizing


Hello Blogging Friends.  I am still trying to get caught up on my blogging; posting as well as reading your blogs.  I have a cross stitch project that I finished over the summer but couldn’t post, as it was a wedding gift.

love cross stitch

It is called My Love by Madame Chantilly.  I stitched it on 16ct Aida Jamie’s Kilt from Fabrics by Stephanie.  I stitched it as charted, except for adding beads in some of the flowers and in the heart. I also added the names and date. The frames was supposed to be a white washed frame, but it came back looking like cream.  This was a gift for my son and his now wife.  They were married last month.

IMG_3314 (2)

It was a nice outside wedding and I think they are happy with how it all turned out after a year of planning.

My Seagrass Shawl that I was blocking during my last post, turned out lovely.

blocked shawl

I wasn’t quite sure how to show it.  I hope you can see all of its awesomeness!  It blocked really well and I am so pleased with it.  It is the Seagrass shawl from Woolenberry.  The yarns are listed on my previous post if you are interested.  I can’t wait to stitch up another shawl from Woolenberry.

Before vacation, I picked up this crochet project:

spicier-life-blanket-progress.jpg

When I picked it up, it was only about half the size that it is now.  And while I do enjoy crocheting, my crochet skills are still not very good.  I can just about figure out how to do all the different stitches,.  But when it comes to my ends and beginnings, I really need more lessons.  So my sides are going in and out and it is not from crocheting too loose or too tight.  It is because I don’t have the correct number of stitches.  So, on Wednesday I will be going to my local yarn shop to see the crochet expert and hope that she can set me straight.  I would like to finish this blanket without the frustrations.  I don’t know that I will rip any of this out.  Maybe continue on the right track and hope that the border will hide my imperfections.  I will have to wait to see what the expert suggests.

This last weekend, hubby and I celebrated our 34th wedding anniversary.  We drove up north and stayed in a hotel on the beach.  It was cold, windy and rainy the first day that we arrived.  But we went out and walked around town and to the beach anyway.  We saw the Mackinac Bridge and had to go back later when it was dark so we could see it all lit up.  Beautiful.  But I am still not ready to cross it.  The next morning, we woke up to a gorgeous sunrise on the lake.  I am so glad we were able to catch it as it was cloudy the next day.  I already want to go back to my hotel room on the beach.

Sunrise in northern Michigan

Next year we will go back in the summer and I will see if I can get my courage up to take the ferry over to the island.  But we had a fun weekend of sightseeing. I even started a new travel shawl.

travel shawl

I am knitting the Funny Rainbow shawl again, but with a different yarn.  I am using Knit One Crochet Too’s Kettle Tweed in Winter Blossom.  I couldn’t find a project in my stash that didn’t have an intricate pattern.  So I opted to do the Funny Rainbow pattern again because it is pretty much all garter stitch with adding stitches to one side.  So we will see how it comes out.  While looking for this project, I found out that I have so many yarn projects waiting to be done. So many beautiful yarns and projects I had forgotten about, too.   I am sure it is over 30!!  I have written them all down and organized them in the little cubbies on my shelf  and have put myself on the no more buying yarn list until I get quite a few of the projects done.  I should probably do that for cross stitch, too, as I have way more cross stitch kits than yarn kits, but let’s not go too far, ok?

So how much yarn do you have in your stash?

cross stitch · Knitted Shawl · Knitting

I Have Been Stitching Away


Hello blogging friends.  It’s been a bit since I last posted.  A little over 2 months.  It was summer, and now it’s fall. The last 2 days here have felt a bit like the start of winter though.  We were at 80 degrees on Tuesday and Wednesday and today it’s 46.  Wow!  I do hope that we get a Fall season though.  I love Fall.  The beautiful colored leaves, just a nip of cold in the air, great stitchy weather and a time for change and new beginnings.  This year has been a difficult year for me.  Filled with many changes.  Some good and some not so good.  This week was a hard week for me.  Today, I have decided to forget about the negative things, and move on for me.  Wish me luck.  So on to stitching.  What would I do without my stitching.  It is my friend, my therapy, my salvation.

Last night I finished the Funny Rainbow shawl I have been working on since May.  It was mostly my car traveling stitch, but this week I decided to work on it more and give it a finish.

Katia Funny Rainbow Shawl

I really enjoyed stitching this and it is so soft and bouncy and the pattern was garter stitch, so easy to take in the car.  It needs no blocking, so I am hoping to wear it soon.  The yarn is Funny Rainbow by Katia and the pattern is Funny Rainbow Shawl by Katia. I have it on my list of things to purchase more of this yarn.

Two nights ago, I finished the Sea Grass Shawl by Janina Kallio.  It also turned out beautifully, but needs blocking.  So this morning I soaked it in cold water, squeezed out the water after about 20 minutes and started putting it on my set of 9 blocking blocks which I had purchased recently.  You see, this is my first time ever blocking anything!  But my shawl was too big, so I had to run to the local yarn shop and get another package of blocks.  So here it is all blocked out.

Seagrass shawl being blockedNot much to look at right now, but in a day or two, when it is all dry, it will be beautiful!  I hope I have blocked it right.  The Blue sparkly yarn is Tardis by Mint Rain Hand Dyed Yarns and the variegated yarn is Surf’s Up from AJHC Wools.  Both were nice yarns to work with.

This week I also finished the October section of the Mystery Sampler from Linen and Threads.  First let me apologize in advance if I offend anyone with this one.

October section of Mystery SALEver since the beginning of this one, I was hoping for mermaids.  And the designer did not disappoint.  I absolutely LOVE this section and it is my favorite.  I know the mermaids are naked, but they are old world mermaids and so perfect on this SAL.  I am stitching this on a 16ct Aida One of a kind fabric from Fantasy Dyed Fabrics.  It is more of a peach color with gray throughout.  The threads are DMC 53 and DMC 310. I am looking forward to seeing what the November section brings.

Since I last posted, I also finished the August and September mermaids on the Treasures of the Deep SAL.

Mermaid SAL Aug and SeptThese mermaids are so adorable.  In a couple of days the October mermaid will be released and I can’t wait to see her.  I may even start adding some of the millions of beads this piece has.

So that is all I have for now.  I did finish the Heirloom baby blanket I was working on, but it also needs to be blocked.  So hopefully I can get that done soon and have a picture posted here next time.  For now I am back to cross stitching on a piece that I am not too happy with.  But I will keep going with it, at least until the new mermaid comes out 😉  So I hope things are well with you.  I am doing my best to get caught up on all of my blogging.  What are you stitching on these days?