Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Wantitis Has Struck Again :)

Quick post for today - tmj is acting up thanks to the sinus migraine from the other day - I got in the latest Stitchery catalog- that thing can be dangerous - especially when there are 2 other people in the household who also like to look at it -

I just adore this one:

Christmas GnomesGuess it's because they remind me of my favorite movie when I was little:

Indian Peacock - my sister loves this one
Country Morning - this would be perfect for 1 or a few of my cousins!

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Internal Clocks....

This is my mindset:
Courtesy -
This is the mindset of some of the trees around here:
Courtesy -


Monday, July 29, 2013

Sunday, July 28, 2013

Underway Again....

I am embarrassed to say it's been almost 5 months since I have worked on this. Guess I got burnt out a bit. But it is back. And I am very happy.

Teresa Wentzler's Tradewinds

Completed model:

My photos show it lighter than the original model. I wish you could see it in person - the model picture nor mine really do it justice - the colors are gorgeous and much more vibrant than what they look like in this post. And yes, my clouds do stand out more too then how they look here.

As of 03/07/2013:
As of today, after 3 hrs worth of work - telescope outlined, 2nd block somewhat close to being completed:
2nd block will read: And a star to steer her by (with 3 various shells intermixed)

Next will come the border - using another conversion for the mermaids - they will be done over 1.
Using recommended threads - linen by DMC (it's a slight off-white, doesn't show well in the photos). This will be the first piece I will have professionally framed.

Post script: I did do some more stitching on Quaker Motifs last night - think that has given me the gusto to work on Tradewinds again. I tried knitting - I honestly did. I completed 1 measly row (240 stitches) and my hands went nope. Pick up your stitching. Glad I did too :)

Saturday, July 27, 2013

Dreaming Of Leafy Things....

The older I get, the more I miss being around nature. Funny saying that since I live in the Pacific NW region - we are surrounded by gorgeous nature areas. But I am talking closer to home. At our little hobbit apartment. We get sunlight from the east in the morning - over the carports and into one bedroom and one living-room window, then a slanted version of sunlight from the north during the afternoon towards twilight through our patio door - once it makes it past the bushes, buildings, and patio fence. We get a touch more sun in our kitchen window (all 18"x 22" or thereabouts of it - did I mention it is put in backwards so one needs a basketball superstar's arm-length to reach the opening mechanism - we leave it closed) oh for about 30 more minutes than the patio door. The other bedroom gets the leftover vapors from the sun - it's under the stairwell walkway above to the upstairs apartments (so is our next door neighbor's kitchen window - at least she can open hers). As you can imagine, we grow a lovely moss garden out in the patch of dirt beyond our patio cement base. We've tried plants on the patio fence but the wind and neighborhood cats love to lay/knock/disturb them so we gave that up.

What am I dreaming of you ask (after all that rambling above)? A garden. A small but beautiful garden. It will have to be one that has easy access to tend to (back injury from work a long time ago). Think raised beds on platform shoes. Containers on wheel bases. That sort of thing. I love to look through garden plans at sites like Better Homes & Gardens (not affiliated with them, just like the info - they have some delightful plans and concepts to browse through -

I am listing a few here for me to refer back to and to share:

Grow Vegetables In Containers

Garden Plans - Attract Birds & Butterflies

Vegetable Garden Plans

The library recently had a new book put into their system - Gardening For Seniors - so I looked on and found a couple more that look good for reference - plus I want to encourage my mom to get back into gardening more (she does want to):


It might seem kind of strange to be dreaming of this stuff in the midst of summer - but so many people I know are harvesting detectible items and discussing what worked, what didn't - not being a year-around gardener (unless taking care of an African Violet and a Shamrock plant counts), stuff like this is probably talked about all time - and well, it only encourages me more!

I would love to also have an indoor Aero garden to grow tomatoes year around (again, no affiliation).

My dream garden would include:

Tomatoes, carrots, watermelon, corn, snap-peas, green-beans, chickpeas, celery, cucumbers, squash, lettuce, spinach, strawberries, potatoes, garlic, onions, green onions, pumpkins, apples, oranges, tangerines, peaches, plums, apricots, lemons, limes, bell peppers, other not too hot peppers, blueberries, blackberries, raspberries (small shrub types) - all sorts of flowers (not sure of the exact types except 1 - California wild golden poppies) oh and maybe some sunflowers - this would not be an extensively big garden - definitely on the small side but with a nice variety of things my family enjoys and can eat (due to allergies). I am just so glad that there are many varieties out now that can be grown on a smaller scale, some in containers, or that are multipurpose (such as apple trees grafted with more than one type).

Now I'm in the mood for a good fruit salad!

Friday, July 26, 2013

Quaker Motifs & Muti Dress Update (#3 I think?)

Quaker Motifs as of earlier today:

Muti dress:

Imagine skirt length from 1.5 inches to 4 inches.

Too hot to knit really and not in the mood to drag out the camera.

Keeping this short so whoopdeedodedodedodedodee la di da :)

Post script: am reading a book on handwriting analysis - so far, I'm on the weird side but then I think that is rather apparent (and it's nice to know there is a large percentage of the population that is in the same rubber dinghy as myself).

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Colonel Klink, Chihuahua Extraordinaire....

First, let me describe where I live. Imagine a large knoll (small hill). My apartment is by the driveway and if you go outside my apartment, and look to your left, looking upwards, you will see another row of apartments at the top of the knoll that are perpendicular to ours. You have to go down a set of stairs to get to my apartment (we call it the Hobbit Hole and not nicely either).  The apartments at the top of the knoll have their patios facing down towards us. There is a main sidewalk from their patio areas down past our apartment to the parking lot.

Earlier this morning, when starting to go out to run some errands (and finding a dead car battery), I turned to come back inside and there he was in all his regimental glory....

Colonel Klink.

If you are familiar at all with the old sitcom Hogan's Heros, then you will immediately know to whom I am referring. The defiant stance, the withering glare, the strutting walk - that is the chihuahua up the hillside from us. We very affectionately (in private) refer to his highness as Colonel Klink due to his voraciousness and courage in defending his territory, no matter if it is the wind blowing a leaf by or if someone sneezes.

His staunchest ally, Lady Schultz, was chasing after him down towards the parking lot, trying to gain his attention without avail. Fortunately, she is lucky that 1) she finally caught up with the Colonel and 2) that she looks nothing like her namesake.

Ah, as we speak, the rolling echoes of his latest complaint can be heard. I wonder who farted this time?

P.s. Yes, we love animals very much!

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Designing My Dream Bedroom....

We all have our fantasies.

Mine of late is wanting to redecorate my bedroom. It will be a long-term project, partially as I want to wait until we move, part because I need to find everything I want to decorate with and lastly but not least, I will want to incorporate some stitching projects in it as well.

My keystone piece for right now that I am picking up colors and inspiration from is a plate I bought at a local shop that carries such delectable stuff year around - Wights (don't get me started on their Christmas stuff)! The plate is only 7" or 8" wide.

These are a couple of pictures I found online that show what it looks like - it is sort of a cross between the two:

My walls will no doubt be white (as a renter, it is rather difficult to paint walls unless you have a really willing landlord and I don't want to go through all the fuss to be honest).

I do know of a rug I found at Ballard Designs called Monterey - it is an indoor/outdoor rug - I like the Mineral color version of it:

Then there is a cross stitch design I want to do for over my bed - I will most likely have a twin size (groan - I know, but I don't need that big a bed and prefer the open space) - I may have to increase the number of motifs across it to get it to the size I want. It is called Seashell Silhoutte by Imaginating. I will be doing the shell motifs in different silk colors - not sure if each replica will be the same color or all different - not sure about the background fabric - want something prettier than looking like it is on a burlap sack and I may leave off the top scroll work.

As for the overall color scheme to the bedroom, I want to incorporate similar colors as to my blog page to be very honest :)

Other pieces I am looking for will be a headboard and nightstand, a lovely writing desk with matching comfy chair, and definitely a very comfy chair for stitching. I am hoping to get a closet organization system that will allow me to have all my clothing and stitching supplies in the closet. If not, I may get a small armoire to place them in. If I do get a larger size bed, I may put either a bench or a small sofa table / console table at the end of my bed. Just depends on how much room I will have. Accessories, lighting, and linens to be decided.

One site I found today is Completely Coastal - it is a site full of ideas and DIY for coastal inspired decorating! So far, it is like the best of coastal & Pinterest all rolled up into one IMHO :)

So as you can see, I have quite a long ways to go in planning but I will get there. Eventually.

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Today's Connect Question....

Tuesday, July 23, 2013
Mark Zuckerberg has said about his site: "The thing that we are trying to do at Facebook is just help people connect and communicate more efficiently." Do you think he succeeded?

HAHAHHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAH *deep wheeze* have you seen his bank account?!?!


Tomorrow, back to our regularly scheduled programming.

Monday, July 22, 2013

Stuck in my mind....

Model Image - Apple Pickin' - Lynn's Prints / Diane Graebner

Have you ever had a pattern stuck in your mind that won't let go? Well, of late, Apple Pickin' by Lynn's Print / Diane Graebner has been floating in and out of my braincell the past few days. I bought the pattern last year and even started it - the tree branch if memory serves me right - but I put it up as I had other more pressing things to do - plus the size was larger than I expected it to be. Of course, doing it on 28 ct Monaco vs. 18 ct linen may have something to do with it (not by much I know).

For some reason, I placed the original pattern in it's shipping envelope (thank you 123Stitch :) up on my closet shelf. I know it's been sitting there for some time but I took it down the other day and looked it over. It is such a pretty and joyful design, I wonder why I haven't gotten back to it yet (I think I have startitis again as more and more designs are calling to me - NOT a good thing!).

I am not sure if I want to purchase hand-dyed fabric for it or take another go at painting fabric myself. I did it once for
Winter Wonderland by LHN and I really like the way it turned out (sorry for the dark & out-of-focus pic). The one thing that bothered me about painting is that some places had the paint too thick so it was somewhat hard to get the needle through. I think if I do paint a fabric for Apple Pickin', I want to use darker colors so the washes of them will show up better.

I've also been looking at other hand-painted fabric that is for sale by others and it's really difficult to decide. I like SunnyDyesFabrics' Autumn Meadow as that is sort of the look I want but I am not sure about the sky color - I would like it a bit brighter blue. Faerie's Meadow is another one but I think the green dress may not look so good on it? Sky Meadow is gorgeous but I am not sure if an apple orchard would look right in that setting. UnderTheSeaFabrics has Fairy Fields but I think it is too dark overall even though it is lovely as well. I don't know. I'll have to pull all the colors and maybe do some paint swatches to come up with something similar for a floss toss to see what I like best. And then go from there. Any suggestions anyone has would be welcome!

As for other stitching updates - I've gone from 1.5" of skirt length to 4" of skirt length on the Muti dress and I did get in some more stitching on Quaker Motifs. Hope to post some pics tomorrow.

Thanks for stopping by and all the nice comments too :) They are very heart-warming to receive!

Children & Pets....

In honor of HRH the new Prince of Cambridge & his parents, family, well-wishers, and just because a relative sent these images in an email (neither of us took them), I wanted to share these cute photos of children with pets!

Sunday, July 21, 2013

I think someone at the library has gone nuts....

Don't get me wrong, normally I love our local library system. They really have a lot to offer and if they do not have it, they will do their best to try to help patrons to get what they are looking for. Their website is set up with lists of everything recently put into their system - and also lists of recently ordered items not in circulation yet - all of which you can place a hold on. One of the reasons I think our local library is so popular is the number of dvds they have for checking out. The selection is great.

My family loves British comedy and Keeping Up Appearances is a top favorite. I mention this because the series is very popular at the library and since we haven't had cable for some time now, I decided several months ago to place a hold on 1 season's worth of episodes on a dvd. There were a couple of hundred people ahead of me but they have several copies to loan out so I don't mind waiting. I was notified the other day that I had some items being held for me that I had placed holds on so my sister stopped by there to pick them up for me - I was thinking it was a book and a couple of dvds.

This is what she came home with:

One episode per dvd. Yes, one.
I double-checked.

Saturday, July 20, 2013

Syrup & Honey....

On today's menu....

Banana pancakes with syrup and butter....and later, custard pie topped with fresh berries drizzled with just a hint of honey....all is needed is some whipped cream :)


Friday, July 19, 2013

Lavender, Tasha Tudor & Stitching....

Earlier today, before the headlines got too wonky, the main newspaper for this area had this lovely photo as their main image on the front page:

Ellen M. Banner / The Seattle Times
It just sets the mood for my weekend - relaxing, fun, whimsical, nostalgic, and peaceful.

This gentleman looks so much like my great-uncle - all that is missing is him wearing overalls! How he loved his ice cream!

I've decided to have a stitching / reading weekend. I was up late last night / early morning due to an asthma attack and decided to start knitting - I managed to get 3 rows completed on the baby dress. I am embarrassed to say I've only gotten 4 rows completed in about 3-4 weeks. Not good! But I will prevail! :)

Then I checked my email and to my absolute delight, Tasha Tudor's online web shop now is offering cross-stitch kits! Only 4 of them and they are pricey but oh what a delight it is to know that one of my family's most favorite authors/artists finally has their artwork available to stitch!!!! And yes, at least one of them is on my Christmas wish list :)

Also, here is the blog ran by her family - there is an email newsletter you can sign up for someplace as well:

In other stitching news, I got in an hour's worth of stitching on my Quaker Motifs project. Not enough really to show yet but hopefully by Sunday afternoon, it will be worth taking a photo or scan of to share.

Well, I think I will go read a bit more of My Cousin Rachel - I've read 3 chapters already and it definitely has me curious as to what happens next!

Enjoy the day and your weekend!

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Reading Marathon Part 2....

These are the two books I have lined up to read next (gotta love the local library!) - I am not sure which one I will read next as they both look like very good reads!

Summary: Rachel, a woman of exquisite beauty, descends on the great Cornwall estate of Philip Ashley. Despite his aroused suspicions, she soon enchants him. In this tale of good and evil, Philip must decide whether the glorious Rachel, the recent mysterious widow of his beloved cousin, is out to destroy him or is the innocent victim of devious man with a tremendous longing to be loved. His fate and his future lie in the answer to this deadly question.
I have always been fascinated by Daphne de Maurier ever since I saw the movie Rebecca. While I have not seen the movie My Cousin Rachel with Olivia de Havilland and Richard Burton, I think it will be soon added to my watch list. 
Summary: Tells the true story of a British soldier who was held in a POW labor camp in the summer of 1944 and willingly smuggled himself into the Buna-Monowitz concentration camp--known as Auschwitz III--to witness firsthand the cruelty there.

I tried to post more information about the story but Blogger is being a bugger tonight (yes, I know I gritched about it in my other Reading Marathon post too) :)

I'm feeling old and cranky today so that's that.

Reading Marathon....

Been on a bit of a reading marathon. In the past 24 hours, I've read 2 books.

First one I read was:

Summary: This compelling true tale offers a striking look inside a hidden Amish community as a woman comes to terms with her discontent and ultimately leaves her family, faith, and the sheltered world of her childhood. She bravely crosses over to a new and unfamiliar reality in hopes of better understanding her emotional and spiritual desires. The result is a powerful and inspiring story -- a search for meaning and the extraordinary lessons learned along the way.

It was pretty much what I expected - I've read on Amish life before so I wasn't too surprised at the severity of how things were for her. What is sad is the letters from home she would share with the readers and the effects of the temperament of her father on everyone in his life.

Second read was: 

Summary: "Drawing from a lifetime of lessons learned, seven-time Emmy winner Betty White's wit and wisdom take center stage as she tackles topics like friendship, romantic love, aging, television, fans, love for animals, and the brave new world of celebrity. If You Ask Me mixes her thoughtful observations with humorous stories from a seven- decade career in Hollywood"--Publisher's description.

This was a cute and very quick read - I had no idea she has already written 5 other books besides this one. What really impressed me is that she writes out all her manuscripts in longhand! Apparently her first love (besides animals and her deceased husband, Allen) is writing. I think that's wonderful. But then I adore this lady so I guess maybe I'm a bit jaded.

I have 2 books lined up to read next but will have to make another post for those. Stupid Blogger won't format properly :(