Saturday, December 31, 2011

Snowman Freebie .....

For those of you that left comments wondering where I found the Snowman freebie I finished...  I have done some looking at the chart, but the url at the bottom of the page didn't lead anywhere.  And I'm sorry to say I don't remember where I found it.

The best I can offer is to make a copy of the chart and mail it to those of you that would want to have it.  Since it was posted as a freebie, I think this would be o.k. to do. 

So, send me an email with your name and mailing address if you would like me to send a copy of the chart to you.

Ringing in the New Year...

Hello Friends!

Happy New Year to you all.  I have been busy today undecking the halls.  I still have the tree to take out of here, but most of the other things have been put away.  I still have snowmen around, but they will stay through January at least. 

We are having mild weather still around here.  It's rather surreal.  It's not normal for me to be able to run outside to the storage shed putting away holiday totes with no jacket...  We do finally have some sunshine this afternoon.  It has been gloomy outside for days.  It's nice to see the sun. 

I just finished up the book I have been reading.  Another cozy mystery.  They seem to be my favorite genre.  I think I am pulling the new Patricia Cornwell off the shelf to read next.  I enjoy using the Good Reads site.  If you haven't explored it yet, and are a reader, you should. It's a great way to keep track of what you've read, add friends and explore authors.  I've kept track of the books I've read since about 1975.  A few years ago I added them all into an excel spreadsheet.  (I know, I'm a nerd).  But what do you expect from a librarian??  I haven't entered all the titles from my spreadsheet into good reads, but have done a good portion of them. 

I am close to having a finish of 'Winter Wonderland' by LHN.  I have been thinking about a New Year's Day start....  I am strongly leaning toward starting the Shores of Hawks Run Hollow.  I have the linen, and chart, just need to pull the flosses.  So, I may be doing that tomorrow....we'll see. 

I'm sure most of you are familiar with Shores, but if you're not, here is a photo of someone's completed work.  I am contemplating some changes in my piece.  We will see what I come up with.  I usually most always follow the chart religiously, but there are about three blocks in this piece I'm not so fond of...I am thinking my piece may be 9 blocks in all, not 12.  I feel almost sacreligious in writing this...I am a big fan of Carriage House Designs....

Stay tuned to see what happens.  As always I appreciate your comments and insights.  If you're wondering which blocks I'm thinking of eliminating, they would be the three in a vertical row on the right side. 

For the first time in many years, Mike is not going to have to work second shift tonight.  He traded with a co-worker and worked first shift today.  So, this means he'll actually be home for New Year's Eve.  I'm looking forward to it.  We're planning a quiet dinner at home, and then maybe go uptown to the local hotspot.  Our children and their dates are planning to be there, so we'll join them for awhile.  It will be a change from my usual routine of staying home stitching and reading.... 

Happy New Year's to all my stitchy friends in blogland.  See you in 2012!

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Christmas is past

Hello stitchy friends...I hope all of you had a wonderful Christmas. We had a very nice day at home. We did our traditional breakfast of egg casserole and homemade cinnamon rolls...yum. Our son brought his girlfriend to join us. We all opened presents together in the morning. Santa was generous to all. I was especially surprised to unwrap an iPad! I am experimenting with my first post from it this evening.

I started Winter Wonderland from LHN recently. It is coming along, then I've had some extra time for reading since I don't go back to work until Thursday....nice! We have been experiencing mild temperatures here for this time of year...and no snow yet. This is pretty unusual for Illinois in December.

I was going to include a picture of stitching progress but am still learning how to do this from the iPad. Hopefully I will figure it out for next time.

Happy stitching!

Friday, December 23, 2011

Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas to all!  And to all a Good Night! 
I hope you have a lovely Christmas full of memories to treasure. 

Thursday, December 22, 2011

In the air there's a feeling of Christmas...

Hello Friends.

Christmas is rapidly approaching.  It's been two weeks since my last post...the days have been full with work, shopping, baking and getting ready for the big day.

I think the house looks it's prettiest when it is all decked out for the holidays.  I have been off work all this week, so I have enjoyed lighting the Christmas tree and enjoying the decorations around the house each day. 
I walked around this morning and took some pictures to share with you of other Christmas cross stitch pieces I've done through the years.  I love this Prairie Schooler Night Before Christmas piece.  This is the companion to the one I hung in the kitchen that I displayed on my last post.  Again, my husband made the frame for this one.  I don't remember where he found the molding, but would like to find it again, since the frames turned out so nice.
I love this little metal tree.  I found it at an auction this summer, so I chose some of the cross stitched ornaments to display on it.
This is my latest finish.  I worked on this little snowman for a couple of weeks.  I'm trying to decide how to finish it off.  I like the mini ball fringe I have laying beside it.  I just haven't decided if I should sew it into a small pillow ornament, or mount it on padded mat board.. Those are the two ornament finishes I know how to do best...  The pattern was a freebie I found online.  I'm sorry I don't remember where.  He reminded me of a Jim Shore design.
Here is another Prairie Schooler finish.  I did this one as a flat fold.  Love the houses along the bottom...
This little one is sitting in my kitchen windowsill.  I enjoy looking at these everyday.
Another little piece on my kitchen windowsill.  I have a collection of snowmen here as well.  And below it is a small wreath that a stitching friend made for me years ago.  She has done these cute small ornaments on paper.

This Winter band sampler from Little House Needleworks finally made it into a frame.  It was an inexpensive frame from walmart.  I was so happy to find it fit perfectly.  This is hanging in our kitchen.

This is another favorite Christmas finish.  I think I found this in an ornament magazine years ago. 

I guess I will have to add a picture of my assistant Joplin.  She loves to help with everything these days.  She was especially interested when I was wrapping presents!  I found her under the tree ripping paper from packages...So I had to do some emergency repair work.

I have some last minute grocery shopping to get that I've checked the supplies and made my list.  We will be celebrating together on Christmas day.  Mike will be working Christmas Eve.  But I'm very happy to say he will have Christmas Day off.  That will be a treat. 

 I hope this wonderful Christmas season brings you joy with those you love.  Happy Holidays dear friends.

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Deck the Halls....

What a busy season this is...I have been busy decorating the house.  We got our Christmas tree put up last weekend.  I have a few pictures to share.  Our tree is a mix of ornaments I've made and received through the years, along with some ornaments the kids made when they were little.  Each one makes me smile.  We place the tree in the corner of the living room near one of the bookcases.

We have also been putting up wreaths, garland and lights outside.  We had to take one of the garlands down today, because the lights quit off to get another string of lights to wrap around the garland.  Our outside decorations consist of wreaths hung with red velvet ribbon in each of the large windows.  Simple, but pretty.  This Fall I picked up two small prelit trees at an auction.  I think I paid a whopping dollar for the pair.  So, we placed them on either side of the front door.  Can't beat that.  Then we ended up by doing lighted garland on the top of the railing around our deck behind our house.  So, all in all, not bad.  This year the house next door to us went all out with colored lights everywhere.  So, we're kind of living by the Grizwolds.

I have watched my absolute favorite holiday movie the other night to get in the holiday mode...National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation.  There are so many funny lines in the movie.  Our family loves to interject them into conversation for a laugh. 

Our Stitching Group is getting together tomorrow night for our Christmas party.  I've made the treats I am taking to share...  mini cheesecakes.  :) yum.  I've also got my ornament made for our exchange, I just haven't wrapped it yet.  It wouldn't be normal if I had it all done the day before...  At least the glue is dry on my ornament finish....  :) 

I haven't done any holiday baking except for a batch of rusks today.  However, these won't last very long around here.  If I want to do any for holiday giving, I will need to make another batch closer to Christmas.  For those of you that have no idea what they are, I'll share a picture.  They are a Swedish baked treat.  Best enjoyed with a cup of coffee.  The recipe is my Mom's.  She taught me how to make them when I got married.  They are a tradition our family enjoys.

 This is a picture of a Prairie Schooler Christmas sampler I did several years ago.  It's one of my favorites.  My husband made the frame for it. 

Next post I will share some pictures of other stitchy Christmas things around our house....

Happy Stitching everyone, that is if you have time for it this busy season.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Happy Thanksgiving!

Happy Thanksgiving Everyone!

I have been busy doing some baking today in preparation for the big day tomorrow.  The desserts and salads are done.  So, that leaves the rest for tomorrow morning. 

We are planning to eat around noon since Mike has to work.  After the cleanup is over, I plan to relax with some stitching! 

I hosted our cross stitch group this past Monday night.  That is always fun.  I didn't seem to get much stitching done tho.  But, we all had a  good time.  I finished up stitching my ornament for our exchange in a couple of weeks, all that is left is the final finish work. 

We are experiencing some mild weather for a few days.  Mike got some of the outside lights up on our deck today.  They always look so pretty.  He put white lights around evergreen garland and affixed it to the deck railings. 

He is planning on doing the front of the house in the next few days.  Just hanging wreaths on the two big front windows and some garland with white lights over the windows.  Simple.  But I like that best. 

I do have something to share that I'm very happy about.  I recently (finally) got my two Hawks Run Hollow pieces framed.   *yeah!

The Village of Hawks Run Hollow was the first one  and then two years later I did,

Christmas at Hawks Run Hollow.  I am so glad to finally have them framed and hanging on the wall.  I am still thinking I might want to tackle the Shores at Hawks Run Hollow someday, and Autumn at Hawk Run Hollow.  But, for now, these are finally framed.

Hope all of you have a wonderful Thanksgiving tomorrow! 

And, Happy Stitching!

Friday, November 11, 2011


Happy Veteran's Day.

Today I am thinking of the date 11-11-11. What a unique occurance.  Kind of makes you want to go out and buy a lottery ticket.  I was just reading online how many marriages are going to take place today.  I guess it would make it easy to remember!

On Veteran's Day I often think of my Dad.  He was a Veteran of World War I.  I was his last child born to him from his second marriage.  Dad was 58 when I was born.  I have lots of sweet memories of Dad.  He was so proud to walk me down the aisle at my wedding.  I suspect he didn't think he would still be alive to do that.  He shed happy tears that day. 

Monday, November 7, 2011


Hello Stitchy Friends.

I finally have some current pictures to share with you! They are even pictures of stitching! 

Wow, I know?  This can't mean I'm getting it together so early in the week can it?  Oh well, here goes.

Finally here is the picture of the completed Prairie Schooler Christmas piece I finished a couple of weeks ago.  Black is not my color of choice to work on, but it did look great with this chart.

Another view...  I haven't decided how I am going to finish this one...maybe a flatfold.

This is a current photo of my progress on the Winter band sampler by Little House Needleworks. This has been a fun one to stitch, and is going rather quickly.
Finally, another finish.  This is a sampler I started several years ago.  It's by Sheepish Designs.  It's been tucked away in a bag for awhile.  I dug it out after I finished the Prairie Schooler on black, and decided there really wasn't much stitching left to be done on it, so decided to finish it!  I'm not so sure of the color choices I had made with this one.  I'm thinking that is why it was in the unfinished state for so long.  But, for better or for worse, I've finished it. 

That about wraps up my photos of current projects completed.  And, since it's Monday, the dryer is buzzing and the grocery store is calling...  so best get on with it.
Hope you all have a great week and...Happy Stitching!

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Pictures of winter band sampler...


Here is a picture of my progress on the Winter Band Sampler.  This has been an enjoyable piece to work on.  I will work on getting more photos taken of my other recently completed pieces soon.

Happy Stitching!

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

October's gone already?

Hello Stitching Friends.

I am finding it rather mind numbing it is the first of November today. 

I have such good intentions about posting more often, but the days seem to be flying by.  The only excuse I will offer is I think about posting, and tell myself I will as soon as I take some pictures to add.

Well, no current pictures for this post.  I will try to have some for the next one.  I finished the Prairie Schooler christmas piece on the black fabric.  It turned out great I think.  I haven't decided how to finish it, but I am thinking about doing a flat fold finish. 

I then moved on to 'Merry Christmas' by Shepherd's Bush.  I have done the stitching and back stitching, just have to press it and sew on the buttons.  I am thinking this should be a christmas gift. 

I then started the Winter band sampler by Little House Needleworks. 

I did find one picture that managed to get uploaded that I'll share.  We recently took a trip to Banner Marsh near Peoria.  It was a beautiful Sunday, and I got some pictures of some swans on the water.  I also managed to get some good pictures of a crane.  I will have to do some looking to find those to share.

I promise next post, I will get some stitching pictures to share.

Happy stitching!

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Stitching progress..

I have been on vacation this week.  The weather has been beautiful, almost too warm for October in the midwest.  Low 80s.  About 10 degrees warmer than it should be.  I'm not complaining mind you.  The trees are really showing their beautiful autumn colors. 

I didn't have any goals I had to meet this week, just have done some jobs around the house that needed some attention.  It is just such a wonderful feeling to have time to putter around.  Today is my last day of vacation at home before Mike joins me.  He will be taking some days off also starting tomorrow. 

Mike helped me with taking some pictures this morning for my blog.  I had the autumn themed pieces in mind to change my blog header photo.  I actually have frames for two of the pieces, just need to stretch them and get them framed...

I have been enjoying some extra stitching time.  I have been working on a Christmas piece.  My friend Cathy handed it off to me at our last stitch group claiming the black fabric was just too hard for her to see to stitch.  She knew I liked the design also, so she just handed me her fabric and chart and said 'go for it'.

So, this is what I've been working on this week.  I finished all the gray at the bottom and I'm going to stitch the outside border next.  It will look good when finished I think.  Black fabric isn't my favorite color to work on but it does look really good with this design.

I recently finished up this Crows freebie.  I purchased some black and gold fabric for finishing.  I need to sew it into a long pillow.  I've seen photos of some of the finishes you all have done on this piece, and it's really cute.

This Jolly Jack piece was the last one I've finished.  I substituted some of the overdyed flosses from what was listed on the chart, but I'm pleased with how it turned out.  I need to press it, and decide on how to finish it.

I finished up this Silent Night ornament by Little House Needleworks recently also.  Again, it just final finish work needed....*sigh*  Can you tell this takes me much longer to get inspired to tackle instead of the actual cross stitching??? 

I got my favorite old quilt out for the photos I've posted.  I bought just the quilt top years ago at an auction, and then had the local senior citizen's ladies quilt it.  The local senior quilters have done many quilting projects over the years.  At the time I added my name to their waiting list it was like at least a year's wait.  But they do beautiful quilting.  I'm not sure if they still do this or not, it has been several years since I had this done.  I have one other quilt I had them quilt for me, it's a sampler quilt I pieced by hand.  My sister sewed the blocks and sashing together for me.  I will get a photo of it sometime and post it.  That is my total experience with  I do love quilts, I just love cross stitching more.

I will end this long post with one more cat photo.  Our daughter, Holly took this photo the other day, and I have to share.

Annie is pretty photogenic.  She likes posing!  LOL.  Holly caught her looking out the living room window the other day and got this shot. 

Well, guess that's the update from my neck of the woods...hope you are all enjoying some beautiful Fall weather.

Happy stitching..

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Hello again.

September is almost gone.  I have been reading blogs, stitching and reading...just not posting very often.

Since my last post, I finished Geranium House by Country Cottage Needleworks.  Not framed, but stitching is done.  I did a small freebie, Crows.  I did find some fabric to make it into a small pillow, hopefully will sew it up soon.  Then, I stitched 'Jolly Jack' by Prairie Moon.  I didn't have the overdyed threads the chart called for, so I substituted my own.  I like the way it turned out.  I'm not sure if I will frame it or sew it into a pillow. 

I picked up Silent Night by Little House Needleworks, one of the monthly ornament charts the other day, so I've been stitching that.  I haven't decided which project I want to stitch after that one.  I do have a few to choose from..... ha! 

We went for a drive Sunday, but the trees haven't started to change too much yet.  Maybe in another week they will be putting on a better show.

Mike took this photo at a nearby State Park.  He will have to go back after the trees change color a bit more.

I love Fall weather.  We've been busy around home, trying to clean out the basement...and our daughter has been working on her large walk in closet. I've made a couple of trips to Goodwill to drop off unwanted items, which is a 'good thing' as Martha says.

I have a week off work next week, so hope to get a few more things accomplished around here. 

I'm sorry I don't have any stitchy pictures to share.  Hopefully by next time, I will have taken some to share.

Happy Stitching!

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

September already?

I don't know where the time is going, but it's going by quickly!  I've been thinking about a blog post for like a week, but never seem to sit down to do one.

I finally uploaded some photos tonight from some recent activities and some stitching believe it or not, so thought I'd best sit down at the computer and share.

I have been stitching.  I finished up Trick or Treat Smell My Feet.  It was a fun stitch.  It's pressed and waiting it's turn in the to be framed drawer.  I enjoyed doing that one.  I've moved on to 'geranium house' by Country Cottage Needleworks. 

I did sit down after work last Saturday afternoon, and frame two pieces.  I always feel so good when I actually get something completely done!

Sorry for the glare on this, but I was happy to get this one in a frame. 
This is the second one I framed Saturday, the designer is la di da, not sure that I remember the name of the design.  It also was a fun stitch that went quickly.  Both frames were from auctions or garage sales.  I love it when I find a usuable frame. 
I have to share a picture with you of our oldest cat, Ranger.  She is the senior resident in our household.  It's a long story about how she came to live with us, but has been a good cat.  She is about 14 years old. 
We were in Dubuque, Iowa Sunday.  We walked along the river front there and found some good subjects to photograph.  The modern looking building above is the River Center.  I thought it made a pretty picture with the clouds reflected in the glass.  They also had many pots of pretty flowers.  I don't know what these large purple and white ones are, but they were very distinctive.
We also found a good restaurant there called Star Brewery that was very enjoyable.  It was a nice day trip only about 2 1/2 hours from home.

We are now experiencing some beautiful fall like weather here in Illinois.  Fall is my favorite season, I just love the cool nights and crisp air.  I started putting away summer things over the past weekend, and began getting out some of my autumn accessories. 

Love these longer evenings for stitching and reading.  I recently finished A Trick of the Light by Louise Penny.  If you haven't read this author before, I encourage you to do so.  This was a great read, and I hated to have it end.

Happy stitching!

Friday, August 19, 2011

August is rolling along

I seem to open each post with an apology for not posting often...

I do have stitching news.  I finally finished the Friendship piece by Prairie Schooler.  It's an old chart, but I've always liked this one.  I'm glad I stitched it.  Sorry the picture isn't the best...

I did make it to a nearby needlework shop a couple of weeks ago, and limited myself to some linen for charts I have that I want to do...  I was thinking I would start a Christmas ornament next, but instead I was inspired to stitch something I've had in my project basket for a few years... 

It is going pretty fast.  I already have the pumpkin in the middle done, as well as 'or treat' on the left.  I was in the mood for some halloween stitching, and I'm glad I started it.  It's going to be a fun stitch. 

I've been busy at work, we've just finished the budget for the year and I've finished the Annual Report for the library.  I'm glad to have those big projects done for the year!

I've just gotten caught up on blog reading.  You are all so productive and inspiring!  It's so much fun to see the pictures you post of your home renovations and of course all the wonderful stitching you're doing!!

I've been busy reading some good books also.  I am eagerly awaiting the new Louise Penny book, "A Trick of the Light".  It should be here by the end of the month.  If you haven't ever read any of her books, I encourage you to start with "Still Life", her first title.  You are in for a treat. 

Split Second by Catherine Coulter was the last book I finished.  Her FBI series is very good.  As you can see in my sidebar, I am on Good Reads.  If you enjoy books, it's a great site to explore. 

As I was taking the picture to post of the Prairie Schooler piece, I found my daughter had been using my camera....

I can only hope she won't be reading my blog anytime soon, or I'll be in trouble for posting this!

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Minnesota Visit

Hello.  I don't know where the time is going, but it seems to be flying by at a fast pace.  I've been going to sit down and write a new post for at least a week.

We did get to my sister's house the weekend before last.  We had a great visit, spent lots of time enjoying their pool.  It was a lovely relaxing get away, just what we needed. 

We did go to visit some beautiful gardens in St. Cloud on Saturday morning.  They are the Clemson Gardens I believe.  The flowers were beautiful.  There were many beautiful fountains as well. 

Mike had a great time taking some pictures.  The gardens end up alongside the Mississippi river, with several benches and garden swings for sitting and enjoying the views.
Pink flowers are among my favorites.  These pretty petunias lined some of the walkways.
Another pretty fountain.  I didn't count how many there were...

One of the gardens was all white flowers.  They were so pretty amidst the green bushes.  But I think the hydrangeas were my favorite.  They had white, blues and pinks.

I promise to post again soon with news about stitching.  But I wanted to take the time to share these beautiful garden photos first.

Happy Stitching!

Saturday, July 16, 2011

A Book related post

Hi All

I just had to share a few book updates. I just finished Bones of a Feather by Carolyn Haines.  A good cozy mystery series.  I think they are getting better as she goes. 

It sounds like we are in for some hot weather over the upcoming week. Think it will be a good opportunity to stay in the air-conditioning and do some stitching and reading. 

We hope to head North next weekend to visit my sister, brother-in-law and their family in Minnesota.  Hopefully the heat wave will have abated some by then. 

I stitched some last night on the friendship square by Prairie Schooler.  It is going to be cute.

I had an excellent surprise today.  I received a birthday gift from my son, a little late.  But am the happy recipient of some new charts and a beautiful new klemscott needle keep!  He knows what his Mom likes!

Thought I'd share a picture of some beauties blooming on our deck. We have enjoyed these colorful celoisa flowers this summer.
The pots of pink geraniums and lobelia have been pretty too. 
I also want to share a picture of Susie with her Autumn at Hawk's Run Hollow finish.  Since I was able to successfully upload my camera pictures, finally!  I love this piece, I'm thinking I will want to start it one of these days...

Happy Stitching Everyone, and Stay cool.