Monday, December 31, 2012

Taking stock

Wow, exactly one year ago, I started this blog, and what a year it has been! On the personal front, we started out last year with my mom and her five critters living with us as she recovered from a major health crisis. After transitioning to a local apartment, Mom is once again living in her newly remodeled house, with all but one of the five critters she came with. Sabrina, who Mom had taken in right before she got sick, is now my cat. ;)

My "little" guy, Tanner turned 11 this year, and will probably be taller than me by the end of the new year. He got his first pair of glasses, and he broke his first (and, hopefully, last) bone this year, his left ankle, and spent three weeks in a wheelchair at school. He is now walking pretty well without his stabilizing boot, and has hopefully learned his lesson about riding his bike in the dark!

On the stitching front, I started out the year with high hopes of no new starts and lots of WIP finishes; hmm, that turned out to be even harder than I thought it would be. Of the twenty WIPs I chose to start with, I completed six of them (although number seven is getting close):

Lady Alexandra, 1/8/12:

Percy Pig, 1/17/12:

Treats Collage, 1/23/12:

Pretty Wicked, 2/12 (along w/Maple Ravens, a new start and finish):

Halloween Rules, 5/28/12:

Dog Lessons for People, 12/21/12:

I also stitched three models for Rosewood Manor this past year, but the only one that I can share is Halloween Quilt Sampler:

Unable to resist making new starts, here are the pieces that I started and finished this year:

Ladyslipper, 1/27/12 - 2/19/12:

Gorjuss Laundry Day, 2/23/12 - 3/3/12:

Christmas Kitty, 3/12 (along with a previous year's ornament):

Very Scary bonus designs, 10/15/12 - 10/19/12:

Very Scary, 6/28/12 - 12/14/12:

Faerie Winter Dream, 11/16/12 - 12/6/12:

Snow Faces, 12/25/12:

Amazingly enough, I think I only had two starts this year that I haven't completed; one is the Passione Ricamo Fairy Mystery SAL. I just received part 7, but I've only stitched the first two parts. However, it still has five parts to go, so technically, I couldn't have finished it this year, anyway! The second is Silver Moon Tea, which is probably about half finished; not too bad! ;)

Wow, seems like quite a bit when they're all together like that! I also want to say thank you to all of you who have shared my journey this past year. I read and enjoy every comment, and just love knowing that this amazing craft is shared by so many people all over the world. 

I hope everyone has a terrific new year, filled with family, friends and, of course, lots of stitchy stash (and time to enjoy it!)!

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Christmas stitching

I hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas, filled with family and friends and lots of stitchy stash! My mom came for a few days, but has to leave today to get home and take care of her kitties. Here is a picture of her with my son, Tanner, and Mom's Sadie, who is very rarely NOT in any picture with my mom (since she is glued to her side almost all the time!):

Since it was Christmas, I couldn't very well bury myself in my craft room and stitch, so I picked a small project that I could easily work on in the kitchen/living room while visiting and making dinner. I stitched up Just Nan's Snow Faces during Christmas day:

And put it in a little Whimzi frame this morning:

When I can get back to my craft room, I'll be working on Nora Corbett's Pincushion Fairy, although I'm starting to doubt that I'll be able to finish her before the new year. Here is how she looked when I picked her up again:

Quite a bit left to do; we'll see how she looks on New Year's Eve!

I've also been doing a bit of year-end organizing in my craft room; filing patterns away properly, restoring threads to their rightful places, ironing finished projects (and deciding which ones to get framed with the gift certificate my wonderful husband gave me for Christmas!) and updating my stitching journal:

I started keeping a journal in 2006, and I really like being able to see what I've accomplished over time. I just wish I'd started keeping one sooner, as I stitched for almost 20 years before I started keeping track!

ETA: As I've already had two comments about the journal I use, here is a link to one: journal. They come in either blue or rust, and can usually be ordered from your local shop. HTH!

Finally, I'd like to give a shout-out to Missy, who is having an awesome giveaway of two pairs of Gingher scissors on her blog. Someone is going to get very lucky in the new year!

Friday, December 21, 2012

I'm shocked...

...shocked, I tell you, that the world is still here! I guess I should be glad that I didn't sell all my stitchy stash to fund a trip to that mountain in France where the aliens were going to come up and save the chosen few; the only UFOs here are the "Un-Finished Objects" in my bucket o'WIPs. ;)

I am happy to say that I did finish one more of the WIPs on the list that I made at the start of the year; Lizzie*Kate's Dog Lessons for People is now complete:

That sparkly little dog next to the dog house is the needle minder I used while stitching this piece; as I've stated many times before, I love bling!

So, six of the 20 WIPs I started with are done, and I'm wondering if I can possibly pull out one more finish before the year ends; I guess I'll see how far along Pincushion Fairy is!

Here is another cute picture of my faithful craft room companion, Maxie; as you can tell, our animals have a really rough life here with us:

Hope everyone has a great stitchy weekend, and a wonderful Christmas!!

Friday, December 14, 2012

Giveaway winners, and another finish

The winners of the Cross Stitch & Needlework magazines are Monique and Dena; congratulations ladies! Please send your mailing addresses to me at rrowe @ (remove the spaces), and I will get these in the mail to you. Thanks to everyone who commented. :)

While I have been busy trying to get ready for Christmas, I have still been trying to stitch a little bit here and there, and this morning I was able to finish Lizzie*Kate's Very Scary mystery SAL:

This was a very fun stitch, although I still think I might stitch it again someday on a different fabric. I mean, it's not like I already have a lifetime's worth of other stuff to stitch! ;)

It seems like I often post pictures of my kitties here, so today I decided to share my sweet little Chloe Rose, instead:

Although, sometimes I think that she thinks she's a kitty, since she's been surrounded by cats since she came to live with us. She loves to bask in the sun like a cat, but she can only do it for a short time before becoming overheated!

Hope everyone has a great stitchy weekend!

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Happy Dancing!!

I finished "Faerie Winter Dream" at 2:20 this morning, which was pretty late/early, so I saved my happy dance until a more reasonable time this morning! It seems like the majority of Mirabilia designs that I stitch are completed in the wee hours of the morning; after a bit of thought, I decided that it must just be the thrill of  putting that last bead (almost always a bead on a Mira!) on that keeps me going long past my usual bedtime.

I stitched her on a Silkweaver opal Belfast solo, and I did make a few minor changes. The pattern calls for Caron Wildflowers, but I used the corresponding colors of Waterlilies, instead. I changed the color of the outer portion of the wings, to differentiate them a bit more from the dress, and I used Kreinik braid for backstitching the wings and antennae; I figured a winter faerie can never have too much sparkle! ;)

So, here she is, in all her bling-tastic glory:

I would like to have a small giveaway to celebrate my happy dance: I bought two extra copies of this issue, and I would like to send them to a couple of people who would like to stitch this design, but are having trouble getting the magazine (Cross Stitch & Needlework, January 2013). I will send one to a person in the US, and one to a person anywhere else in the world, and all you have to do is leave a comment saying that you would like to be in the giveaway; in your comment, please note either "in US" or "outside US". 

I will draw the winners on Friday, December 14, and announce them here. Please note that you are responsible for checking back to see if you won; I will put my email in the post announcing the winners, who will then be responsible for contacting me. You'll have until December 21 to respond; if you don't contact me within that time, I will pick another winner. Please let me know if you have any questions.

Now I am off to start on some of the housework I've been neglecting during my stitching frenzy. I hope everyone (else) has a great stitchy weekend!