Wednesday, 31 March 2010


It's cold, rainy and very non-Spring like here in Southern England so I am thrilled to have received a gift of pure Sunshine :

This lovely award was given to me by Cath ~ The Stitchin' Chicken and I am very touched that Cath chose my blog as one of her nominations ~ thank you soooooo much!  As I am a fairly new Blogger my 'followers' list is not huge and I think most of you on it already have this award so I send a big thank you to all those who read my blog and who take the time to comment on it.  I thoroughly enjoy reading all your Blogs and it is truly inspiring to see pictures of both the progress and completion of your stitching projects that I would normally only ever see as a chart!

Can you believe Easter is almost here?
Where did January, February and March go?
Today was the last day of school term for my gang of three and now they have a long 18 day break (will probably feel a lot longer to me!!!!) and although they are all now non-believers in Santa, the Tooth Fairy etc., the Easter Bunny WILL be making an appearance!  I have been stitching as often as I can in the last 10 days and despite shutting my fingers in the car door last Saturday and spending nearly 2 hours at A&E with thankfully no broken bones I today finished two Easter stitches . . . .

'Happy Hoppy Easter' by Lizzie*Kate stitched on 28count Sand Minster Linen in Gentle Art Sampler threads with purple ribbon & small coloured buttons

The colours I chose were not too different from those listed on the chart but Buttons and I agreed that my 'Burnt Orange' sampler thread was not the colour of any carrot Buttons would want to eat so chose 'Bittersweet' instead, I stitched all the wording in just one shade ~ 'Purple Iris' (similar to the colour of my nails after being shut in the car door) and the carrot foliage is in 'Spring Grass'.  My choice of colours were inspired by the picture below which was a joy of colour to finally see appear in the front garden - not sure what my neighbour was thinking when she saw me planting fully grown carrots in the ground - probably that I was cheating with the vegetable patch!!!!

My second Easter completion is one of the charts bought at the recent Olympia show:

'Easter Blessings' by Lizzie*Kate (contains 3 different charts) stitched on 28count Cashel Raw Linen in Gentle Art Sampler threads and flower/heart embellishments

I've found it really difficult to choose my next project but finally decided to stick with the Spring theme and have just started the 'Cluck Cluck' kit I bought recently at Olympia.  I haven't stitched this designer before but the thread colours are so gorgeous and I know it will look great hanging in my Kitchen when it's finished.
The kit came with white Aida and it looked really stark against the soft muted colours so I am stitching it on the Minster Sand Linen I used for the Happy Hoppy Easter and I think it will give it a much more country rustic feel! 

I wish you all a very Happy Easter and hope the Easter Bunny is kind to you!  My strict routine of 10,000 steps a day and a careful watch on cholesterol levels mean NO eggs of any sort for me (how boring!) but you know me . . . . . a cappuccino and I'm in heaven!

Tuesday, 23 March 2010


I'm now going to sound like the very novice Blogger that I am . . . . .

Firstly I really appreciate you lovely ladies who have opted to follow my Blog, I have only been going for 1 month and the response I have had is fantastic!  I have recently been nominated for a Sunshine Award, something I never expected so soon  and am very grateful for it but I am unsure if I have the right to accept it?  I believe to accept it I would need to nominate 10 further people for the award and as I don't have lots of followers (yet!!!) and I think most of the ones I do already have this award, would it be the correct thing to do?  Also I have to add links to their names . . . . HELP! I haven't got a clue how to do that?

Secondly, I am struggling with abbreviations . . .  I have worked out that W.I.P. is 'work in progress' but keep coming across SAL, RAK, PIF, LNS, UFOs . . . how useless am I? L.O.L!  All help appreciated!

Now about my visit to the Stitch & Craft Show last Saturday.  DD (not very creative with needle & thread but loves a day out) and I set off early to London complete with food, drink and my shopping list in preparation for what might be a long, busy day . . .  MIGHT? LONG? BUSY!  I'd never seen anything like it and my DD looked at me horrified at the prospect of battling through the mass of people to fulfil my shopping list and after 2 hours suffering from sore feet and bruises from elbows, bags and shopping trollies we waved the white flag!

I knew which stall I wanted to shop at and thankfully it was there ~ a lovely lady with a huge assortment of charts from all my favourite American designers so here's the new Stash ....

'Stitches of Love' kit with rusty heart buttons  *  'Midnight Watch' chart by Blackbird Designs  *  'Cluck Cluck' kit by The Stitching Shed  *  'Coffee Crazy' chart by Lizzie*Kate  *   'Cuddly Bunny' Stitchlet kit by Mouseloft  *  'Happy Bunny Bunny Day' chart by the Trilogy  *  'Easter Blessings' chart by Lizzie*Kate  *  2 pretty Fat Quarters  *   28ct Cashel Linen  *  2 skeins of overdyed floss by Needle Necessities  *   a 'Buttons' jar from East of India  *  6 assorted buttons for W.I.P.s   * and finally by kind delivery from the Postman that same day : 'Snowy Pines' kit by Little House of Needleworks . . . . PHEW!

Now I see my new stash in pictures and words, yes it was worth it!  But poor DD was celebrating a friend's birthday the following day and was invited to go Paintballing at 9.15am early morning some 15 miles away. This involved a 7 hour duration of being dressed top to toe in what resembled the SAS outfit of black armour, black helmet, black goggles and a heavy paintball gun (DD loves 'pink', 'shoes', 'handbags' !!!) ~ when she finally got home she was exhausted and to add to the previous days sore feet and bruising she had even more purple patches and resembled a dalmation dog - we laughed together, opened a bag of cookies and picked ourselves up again with hot chocolate and cappuccino!


Thursday, 18 March 2010

HOT, COLD, HOT, COLD . . . .

The past few days has had me experiencing extreme hot and freezing cold temperatures and NO before you say it, it's not an age thing!

Monday morning saw our central heating boiler create a mind of its own and when running on timer would not turn off when it should giving us tropical temperatures and having to completely shut it down which then turned the house Siberian!  One minute we were running around the house in next-to-nothing and the next we were all dressed in multiple layers and looking like we had had a bad case of overeating!  A 'friendly'? Engineer came out Tuesday to inspect ..... ordered the necessary part for Wedneday ..... returned Wednesday with the wrong part ..... re-ordered for Thursday which hasn't now arrived and will be back tomorrow - I shall lock the door once he is in the house with the part and hold him ransom until normal service resumes!!!

BUT the good news is to keep warm I decided the only solution was to stitch ... and stitch ... and stitch and as from today Noah's Ark can finally set sail (oh! maybe not, the last thing I want now is flooding).

Noah and Company ~ The Ark ~ HeartStrings, The Artists Collection ~ stitched on Aida Rustico 14count with DMC threads

I am going to turn it into a cushion and have found some Noah's Ark fabric for the backing and ordered some Debbie Mum embellishments to add to the front - a really cute Noah, a whale and of course the white dove.

I've also sorted out another nautical stitch still waiting for the finishing touch . . . .

Bent Creek's Lighthouse Sampler stitched on Lugana 'New Khaki' 28count evenweave with both WDW and GAST

I am now counting down to one of the biggest stitching events in a cross-stitcher's diary here in England ~ The Stitch & Craft Show this coming weekend in London.  It is the one place where many of the exhibitors sell a lot of the American designs and showcase lots of new releases - can't wait, tickets for show and train are both sitting here ready and as long as I've set the Engineer free I'll be there!


Sunday, 14 March 2010


This weekend has been the perfect tonic for that happy feeling of Wahoo, Life is Good! (that reminds me another chart by Bent Creek waiting in the Stash box).

Yesterday we all did our own thing ~ DH and Twin II went to watch a local football match, DD celebrated a friend's birthday so went to see the new Alice in Wonderland/Johnny Depp film (verdict: excellent) and me and Twin I (beat Twin II by appearing 1 minute earlier in the World) went to the Garden Centre!  Now Twin I and Twin II, being typical boys aged 12, are not big on visiting Garden Centres and desperately hope they won't be spotted by anyone they know . . . . BUT today was Mother's Day so an exception was made and today I woke up to . . . . .

A beautiful boquet of purple iris and pink carnations with a pink bag and heart shaped chocolate and a cute little sheep shelf sitter with a bean-bag body, knitted arms and legs and a felt heart for a nose!

 My dear Mum and Dad (aka 'the patient' who's still recovering but doing really well) came for the day and Roast Beef with all the trimmings was thoroughly enjoyed by all for lunch and fresh cream scones and tea (or in my case, you've guessed it, cappuccino) for Supper.  Although it was a busy day I thoroughly enjoyed it and was all set up tonight for my final tonic of the weekend ~ a good dose of cross-stitching until DD offered me a manicure which I couldn't resist so I am right now a very happy bunny and will crack on with Noah tomorrow . . . . .

Friday, 12 March 2010


The signs of Spring have briefly teased us here in the South of England but now have gone away and today it's cold, wet and very gloomy ~ Buttons and I are not impressed!  I think the effects of last week's traumatic episode have caught up with me these past couple of days and I have felt a little the same as today's weather so Buttons has been in the Kitchen keeping me company ~ me with my daily essential Cappuccino and Buttons with his carrots and green beans.

I sorted out another past completed project today ~ 'Wildlife Sampler' and although I have a mount cut ready for it I cannot find a frame the right size anywhere so another small cushion ~ what do you think?
Although the bunny on it is a brown hare it reminds me of Buttons with the colouring and the upright ears, the little footprint at the top is labelled fox tracks and the mouse at the bottom is a field mouse.  Both these two are regular visitors to our back garden (unwelcome ones) - both come to visit Buttons - one to probably make a meal of him if he could, the other to eat his food and nest in his stock of straw!

I have been topping up the stash box the last couple of days ~ retail therapy DH, always cheers you up!  I have LHN 'Snowy Pines' on its way to me and see today they have just released the next ornament 'Winter Sheep' so will have to hunt that out too.  The Postie has also delivered LHN 'Snowflakes' chart, Just Cross Stitch 2009 Ornament publication and Lizzie*Kate's 'Cross Stitcher in Residence'.

And finally . . . . . from Buttons . . . . . HAPPY STITCHING!


Tuesday, 9 March 2010


Today was a 'normal' day and after the ups and downs of the last week it was very welcome!

I am pleased to say that the patient is doing well and under strict instructions is resting and doing as he is told!  Thank you to Deb for her good wishes yesterday, they were very much appreciated.

No time for cross stitching as yet but the guys are all watching footie tonight, DD is both blogging and facebooking so the study is mine for the night and the daylight lamp is ready for action.  Here are a couple of pics of previous projects that I thought I'd share with you, they live in the Kitchen and are always out on show ....

This is Archie Bear and is a regular in one of the UK's cross stitching magazines.
I stitched him in colours of my choice on natural 28count evenweave and made the finished design into a small bag.

'Cock a Doodle doo' is a Heart in Hand design called Wee Rooster.
He was stitched on 28count cream Monaco evenweave again in colours of my choice in both DMC and GAST.
I made the plate behind in our local Pottery Barn in matching colours.

Hopefully Noah's Ark will make a further appearance tomorrow night so until then Happy Stitching everyone ......

Monday, 8 March 2010


The past week for me has literally been a rollercoaster ride!

My dear Dad fell ill last Wednesday and by the evening was having a 3 hour operation with me pacing the hospital floor and visiting him in ICU at nearly midnight.  With lots of ups and downs inbetween, today has seen him being discharged and back home with my dear Mum with almost a 100% recovery - I am so happy tonight and so very proud of him.  Today is also my DH's birthday and we have just celebrated both occasions with a Chinese meal and sticky toffee gateau - I think an increase to 20,000 steps may be in order tomorrow???

Obviously due to all this excitement 'Noah's Ark' has taken a back seat and had to come ashore!  I think any attempts at cross stitching this past week would probably have meant a giant unpicking session this week.

I want to say a very BIG thank you to my new followers, I'm so pleased that people have found my news and projects of interest and  will encourage me to put Noah's Ark afloat again soon and aim for completion . . . . . . .

Tuesday, 2 March 2010


It takes some getting used to .. waking up to brightness, birds singing and daffodils springing up everywhere ~ but I'm not complaining and today made the most of it.  Buttons was out first thing so he could enjoy the whole day sunbathing and I did my 10,000 step walk accompanied by Coldplay and Timberland.

I listed some of my projects for 2010 this afternoon and was disappointed I didn't find anything in my stash suitable to stitch ready for Spring - no bunnies, no daffs and no easter eggs (not good for the diet anyway) but did find two past completed stitches which require the finishing touch - might have a go at that tomorrow.
Is it just me or does Christmas and Halloween just shout out CROSS STITCH?  The design and charts for both these occasions are just fab and there are so,oooooooo many to choose from - the only drawback is packing them away after the holiday has finished.

Noah's Ark had me stitching until the midnight hour last night - as I said in yesterday's post it's such an easy stitch : just stripes and blocks of colour.  There's always one part of a design that I just can't wait to stitch and on this one it's the heart, as you'll see from the pic I purposely stitched everything around it last night so that I can concentrate on that one piece tonight so that's what I'm off to do now before an early night becomes more tempting (perhaps a cappuccino or two will help?) . . . . .

Monday, 1 March 2010


Something strange in the sky today and from memories past I do believe it was the SUN!
After yesterday's horrible weather it was a welcoming sight and Buttons and I made the most of it ~ me with a cappuccino and Buttons stretched out soaking up the warmth ~ lovely!!!

Noah's Ark is making good progress and it's a really enjoyable stitch.  I actually started it a couple of weeks ago on blue evenweave as shown on the chart but found recently that I have been struggling seeing the fabric count.  DH sent me to the Opticians and the outcome was I was long-sighted in one eye and short in the other (only me!!!)
I now have a pair of glasses for close-up work and what a difference ~ I don't know how I was ever stitching in the right holes.  Anyway decided to carry on stitching on 14-count Rustico Aida which reminds me of a sandy beach and am happy with the outcome so far.