Showing posts with label Finish. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Finish. Show all posts

Monday, January 6, 2014

2013 in 60 seconds

I'm still alive!

My friend Shawn came for a visit from Chicago, one of the things we did was go on a bike tour of Coronado Island.  Total blast, and a bit of a cheat since we had electric bikes (but I swear I barely used the battery).

I got serious about losing weight and participated in a medical study through the VA.  Part of it involved having genetic testing done to link my genes to an "ideal" diet.  I can officially say I have the fat gene.  Despite what a lot of people would like, its actually fairly rare.  By the way, my ideal diet is low carb (30% fat, 30% protein, 40% carb).  Lean meat, veggies and Greek yogurt are my friends now.  Oh, and I'm down 25 pounds (it was almost 30 before the holiday season struck).

I went to my first ever pro football game, 2 actually (pre-season) and had a blast.

Managed to hook up with my college roommate that lives less than a mile from the house.  How's that for coincidence?  We've been having fun and I get to spoil her kids like an Auntie.

She hosted a Halloween party and I sort of dressed up.

I took up a new sport/hobby - paddle boarding!  Totally love it.  Even better I love the San Diego weather that allows me to go paddle boarding on Boxing Day (December 26 for the non-Anglophiles).

There was a single stitching exchange with Parsley.  She sent me a gorgeous gold box and tons of extra goodies.  She knows I love to cook, so included some cookbooks.

I chose to stitch a covered shadow box, borrowing design inspiration from Blackbird Designs, and using pattern elements from Blue Ribbon Designs.

I had some other stitching finishes as well

The last two are part of a larger project - a collage.  I borrowed inspiration from Gigi's large sheets she stitches.  I was getting tired of having a bunch of small pieces.  You can only  have so many pillows and framing gets expensive, not to mention running out of wall space.

Christmas snuck up faster than usual, and then was gone in a blink of an eye.  Jim, Mary Lou and the goldens came out as usual.  Buddy (on the left) is their newest rescue, and he's a mix, there's definitely some hound in him.  Holly (on the right) is a playful as usual, despite getting up there in years.

I found out Annie is a total ham when it comes to taking pictures.  I was trying to get the settings right on my DSLR and she had fun posing for me. No, the settings weren't correct for this shot, its over exposed!

Mom even got me to eat turkey this year.  I enjoyed the duck I cooked for Christmas Eve much better, but never got a snap of it.

And probably the highlight of the season for me was getting my picture taken with Santa.  I was bundled up in a ton of layers, we were at a members-only event on the Midway to watch the Parade of Lights (various boats decorated for the holiday cruise the bay in an aquatic parade).

Uncle Greg and his daughter Delaney came down for a visit after Christmas.  Delaney is severely handicapped and has the most wonderful companion dog, Breona.  Unfortunately she's getting up there in years.

Hoping everyone has a joyful and blessed 2014!

Thursday, March 28, 2013

My stitching sister

You probably don't know, but Terri is my stitching sister.  We share very similar backgrounds - both of us were in the Air Force, we're both accident prone, we both have ankle issues, we're both going through graduate school, and most importantly, we both love to stitch.

Out of the blue a package arrived yesterday.  I wasn't expecting anything, so I was totally blown away when I opened it and kept pulling out item after item.  Terri had chosen to surprise me with the most adorable Easter bunny stitched over 1, and all sorts of other goodies.

You might notice 2 of the chocolates are missing.  Both parents were hovering as I opened the package, and chocolate was immediately consumed.

Terri - thank you so much for spoiling me!  Random surprises are the absolute best!

A few weeks ago I posted about a new blog, The Snowflake Diaries, and an adorable freebie on it.  I chose to go out of my normal comfort zone of 36 or 40 count linen and stitch on 28 gingham.  For some reason the pale green gingham screamed Spring! to me and seemed perfect for this design.  I'm still trying to decide if I'm going to be brave enough to sew this into an egg-shaped pillow, or if I'm going to try and find an oval frame.
Spring Bunny Love, stitched on 28 ct gingham with
Nina's Threads (slightly altered from charted colors)
Several months ago I posted about having artificial turf put in the back yard.  I thought I was going to hate it, but I have to admit, I love it.  I never did take a true "before" picture.  The one below is after we'd spent several days pulling up plants and cutting out bushes.  Its hard to see, but what's left in this picture are the root balls of about 40 bushes.  I spent an hour trying to dig one out without any progress.  The easiest solution was to rent a stump grinder for half a day to grind them out.  Dad was done in about 90 minutes.

And here's the after pictures.  The yard is just so open now, doesn't look like a total overgrown mess (only partly overgrown now).  Annie has gotten used to it, and we have a great area for me to throw a ball for her.  We're still working on the part of her bringing it back and dropping it for another throw.  She thinks the game is for me to chase her to get the ball.

Friday, March 22, 2013

Word Play

Its been a long time since I've really devoted any time to this project, and even longer since I've shown any pictures.  December Word Play was completed back in 2011, I worked on November all through 2012 and finally finished it this month, along with October and a start on September.  The whole series is being stitched on one loooong piece of 40 count Flax linen, which I gave a coffee bath.  For those of you that are curious about the specifics, it will be roughly 890 stitches lone (including 5 blanks between each month) and 129 wide.

And here's a pic of the whole thing as of a few days ago (there's been some progress on September since the picture).  Please excuse the wrinkles!

Its a bit strange working backwards, but I don't trust myself to count correctly up to the top, and I'm too lazy I don't want to take the time to baste in the lines.

I'll leave you with some pictures I took while we were at Sea World last week, taking advantage of local resident Fun Passes.  Mom rode the Manta rollercoaster with me, since Dad's back is a ticking time bomb for a 3rd back surgery.

Shamu show

Falcon used to scare off snowy egrets that steal food from the seal and sea lion area

Mom (and Dad next to her, but hidden) on the whirly-gig ride.  This is actually in the children's
area, but what the heck, the park wasn't exactly swamped with kids mid-week in March.

Harbor seal clapping to get attention and hopefully fed some
mackerel (assuming the snowy egret didn't steal it first).

Saturday, March 16, 2013


I was getting a bit depressed about the lack of pictures in my 2013 Finishes album, so I decided I'm going to count each of the Santa's Village houses as its own finish.  Cheating?  Maybe, considering I am stitching it all on one piece of fabric, but it keeps me motivated.  I swear Santa and Mrs. Claus's eyes aren't really as freaky as they look in the picture.  I took these outside in bright light, and you're seeing shadows cast by the itsy bitsy tiny beads I used for their eyes.

I did make some changes to the cookie shop, and turned it into a bakery by stitching a chocolate cake on a silver stand.  The cookie button is borderline too big for my 36 count fabric, but oh well.

For those that follow me on Instagram, these next pictures will be a bit of deja vu.  June, hold your breath, I finally finished Eve's Garden and the chart will be in the mail to you shortly.

Shepherds Bush Eve's Garden, stitched as kitted

The orange tree is absolutely loaded with flower buds, and smells heavenly as you walk by.  Just like a bottle of my favorite Jo Malone Orange Blossom cologne!

The lavender is coming into bloom as well.  If it were my house/yard, I'd have this all over the place.  Its beautiful and one of the best natural bug repellents around.  I had 3 plants right next to my small patio up in Utah, and could sit outside in the evening and never be bothered by gnats, no-see-ums, or any other kind of flying insect that tries to eat me alive.

I've totally gone California hippy with my breakfast.  Greek yoghurt is fine, adding homemade pomegranate jelly is delicious, the ground flax is healthy, but the hippy part was the local bee pollen I added.  Oh well, it fits in with the Birkenstocks I seem to live in due to my various ankle surgeries.

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Winter Exchange

I participated in the Winter exchange over on Stitched with Love.

Lynda very obviously read and paid attention to my"likes."  The package was filled with gorgeous red things, and she stitched me a Blackbird Designs pin pillow in my favorite color.  I absolutely love the combination of red with the grey fabric, and the silvery grey ribbon trim.

Gorgeous pillow, so elegant with the colors an finishing touches

Look at all that red stash!

Just what the wooden pedestal bowl needed,
some red to break up all the pink.

Living in southern California can make it a bit hard to get into the "winter" spirit.  To make things even more difficult, I was mailing out to another Californian - Teresa.  Instead of going with an obvious winter theme, I chose to stitch with icy colors - overdyed Caron Waterlilies silk in Polar Ice and frosted beads that reminded me of icicles.  The design was one of Jeannette Douglas's Quaker Pincushions, which I finished as a box topper.

Box with matching fob

Navy blue paint and a coat of liming wax.  No, this isn't that disgusting 80's pickled oak look.  Hard to tell in the picture due to glare, but it turned out gorgeous and was hard to part with.

You can just barely see the magnetic needle minder I made to match the scissor fob and box.

Thursday, February 7, 2013


My plan was to work on Jane Rees.

What actually happening is I'm working on Shepherd's Bush Eve's Garden.

My plan was to knock out my Social Responsibility class quickly.

What's actually happening is I'm taking lots of break from the computer and getting some stitched things finish-finished.

Why am I not sticking to my plans?  My eyes - they're bothering me again.  I can't handle 40 count linen right now, but Eve's Garden is on 32 count.  Reading on the computer monitor hurts my eyes after a bit, so I take breaks and try to work on the pile of stitched items that need finishing.

Charlene created a fantastic blog that has been very motivating - Stitched: Now to Finish

Valentine designs stitched last year, BBD stitched 2 or 3 years ago

With Thy Needle and Thread Home for the Holiday
stitched 4 years ago

Cuffed and lined stocking

I've also been painting my nails!  I ruin a manicure faster than you can say snap, so I don't usually paint my nails.   Mom hated this color (Orly Night Owl - a taupey-grey with some shimmer), I liked it.

I've also been baking.  Easy-peasy whole wheat bacon cheddar scones.  The weather was gorgeous on Sunday, so we had breakfast outside.

I'll leave you with a snap of "rescued" trimmings from the flowering apple tree.  Dad decided to scalp trim it.  I wasn't sure if the buds would open up, but they did.