Friday, November 30, 2012

Whoa Nelly.  It rained hard here today.  Like build an ark hard.  It was raining sideways much of the day.  At one point I had to get to my car and I was absolutely soaked.  Liesl, my little beach baby, who loves to play in the surf of the Pacific, refused to go out in it.  At one point I was standing out in the rain in pajamas and slippers begging her to go.  She just stood at the doorway like, "No way, Mom."  She is made of sugar and will melt away in the rain.  sigh.

We are expecting an even bigger storm here on Sunday.  The one today caused a bit of damage and flooding.  Hopefully, there is an opportunity to clean up the area before the next one hits.  

I was doing a little research online earlier about dog behavior.  This is always an interesting subject to me.  There is also a lot of interpretation that differentiates over different behaviors.  I was looking because in the past year Liesl has started sitting on my feet but only after I give her hand signals that I would like to rub her head and ears.  When she sees me give the signal, she will come over and sit on my feet while I give her a little head massage.  Now several web pages say that it means that a dog is disrespecting you.  Others say that it means that they just want to be close to you.  To me, it just looks like she is just looking for a warm place to sit and does not want me wandering off.  Like all dogs, she loves when I rub her ears.  

I believe in massage for dogs as much as I do for people.  I was in a class once where it was said that dogs carry their stress in their hindquarters.  Therefore, it is a good idea to massage their rear and their back legs in the evening.  So generally, I give my stressed out from being spoiled schnauzer a little mini massage.  She loves this time.  I was told by my doctor that it is important for circulation in particular and he thought it would be really healthy for dogs, too.  I figure it is just nice to give her the focused attention, but I am glad that it has health benefits, too.  I think there are a lot of health benefits of giving and receiving love.  

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Waiting For The Storm To Pass

Well, we are all hunkering down for about three days of big storms here.  Our big storms consist of pouring rain and heavy duty winds.  We also get some warnings to stay away from the beaches and the rocks because Monterey Bay can become pretty angry.  Sadly, we have had some folks who do not know better or who do not heed the warnings who tragically get swept out to sea by standing in the wrong place.  Those of us who know this Bay have a really healthy respect for it.  

The rain is supposed to be really intense this weekend and we are supposed to get some significant rain totals out of it.  This suggests some extra stitching and snuggling on the sofa with a little dog and my cup of hot cocoa.  Maybe I will even get my grapes square close to being done.

I got to stitch this evening and catch up on my episodes of Duck Dynasty.  This show is so darn funny.  I have to say that Uncle Si is my favorite on the show.  I can not believe it when I hear myself laughing out loud at some of the stuff that happens on this show.  Some of the things that Si says are so quotable, Jack.

Speaking of my reality show guilty pleasure.  I am so glad that RHOBH is back on.  I could not even watch the reunion shows for New Jersey.  All of the fighting was just depressing and not entertaining.  I am loving RHOBH.  I am also so excited that Shahs of Sunset is starting back up.  I can not help it that I love these really cheesy shows.  Plus they are really easy to stitch to. 

I have decided that I am going to learn how to do lacing for mounting and framing my stitched pieces.  I have seen a couple of tutorials and it does not seem to be that hard.  I think it will ultimately make my pieces look a bit more professional by creating the proper tension all around the piece.  It should be a lot easier to put into the frame, too.  I would have to do so much shifting around of the fabric to get it to sit right in the frame.

Well, off to dream about chocolate!

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Incremental Progress

Okay, I know I have not made huge progress on the piece, but that I would share because it is starting to look a bit more "grapey."  I know that it looks like the grapes are all the same color, but there are about six different shades of purple in there so far.  The color variation is so subtle.  I think it will really pop when I get to do the back stitching.  

I pulled out my old JCS Christmas Ornament issues this week.  I have every issue going back to 2001 or 2002.  There are some really amazing designs in these collections.  I am feeling very inspired.  I really need to set ornaments as a bigger goal in 2013.  I really like the earlier collections, but they are all so fun and would each probably take a weekend to stitch up.  

I think I may have a mental block about stitching ornaments, even though the designs are so beautiful.  I think it is the finishing that is off putting for me.  There are some amazing tutorials on the internet on the different methods for finishing.  I will need to face my fear and get ornaments some out in the next year.  

It is supposed to rain tonight and I am so looking forward to hearing that pattering on the rooftop.  It is like a lullaby for me and helps me to sleep so soundly.  We had some serious wind and rain today.  This is what I love about our winters here.  Plus we really need the rain (even though the weeds in my yard are thriving!  My personal battle with Oxalis Megalorrhiza continues.)

Well, off to dream happy dreams.

Monday, November 26, 2012

Grapes Square

Here is my progress on the grape square of the bell pull.  You can already kind of make out the individual grapes in the cluster.  I really love the colors that Teresa Wentzler chose for the purples in this.  They are, of course, blended threads.  I am enjoying stitching this square and got quite a bit done while I watched The Voice tonight.  There is something about all of those beautiful songs that enhance the stitching experience.  

Tonight is pretty chilly.  Like, wear your socks to bed chilly. It is pretty clear outside.  I let Liesl out a little a while ago for the last time tonight.  I stepped outside, too.  Everything was so aglow with the moonlight.  I looked up at the moon and it just looked so bright and so beautiful.  I was in awe for the moment.  

It was pretty nice to step back inside, where everything was warm and cozy.  Every evening, as I get ready for bed, I put my lavender scented neck warmer in the microwave for a couple of minutes.  Then I put it under my blankets to warm up the bed while I finish letting Liesl out and putting all of my stitchy stuff away.  Everything is nice and toasty when it is time to turn in.  Plus my room smells like lavender, so it is so nice and cozy.  

So I am falling asleep thinking about all of the beauty and blessings in my day.  My sweet little dog, the gorgeous moon, the nice people at the smog place that not only got me in right away, but gave me a nice discount, too.  I made a super good dinner, talked to my best friend, and stitched while watching one of my favorite shows.  It was another blessed day, filled with miracles and wonder.

Hope your day is beautiful, too.

Sunday, November 25, 2012

A Non Stitchy Project

Today was a really good day.  I was the assistant minister and cantor at church.  I always feel so honored to serve in this capacity.  Being in church always centers me for the week ahead and gives me such peace.

The other thing that happened was one of my best friends invited me to lunch at our favorite Mexican restaurant.  I have been watching what I eat for the past few months and wanted to get back on track, so I planned on having a salad.  (Yeah, right!)  However, my friend talked me into having our favorite nachos that we both love.  They are loaded with cheese, sour cream, guacamole, etc.  So they are totally fattening.  It was nice to sit and catch up with her and have our own version of a thanksgiving meal.  I love having old friends that you can always settle right into a discussion with.  We know each other's history so we do not have to rehash anything.  Old friends rock!

My friend had invited me to go to lunch with her today and to Michaels.  This is her mom's first Christmas in an assisted living facility so she wanted to make her room as cheerful and festive as possible.  She wanted an extra pair of eyes while she pulled stuff together.  My friend is a retired interior decorator, and totally rocks at flower arranging.  She wanted to dress up several wreaths and wall hangings with those cute picks you get at Michaels.  I went through bins finding the cool picks and she arranged.  She can make really inexpensive items look very chic and expensive.  

She was putting together the most beautiful bough with additional floral picks.  I fell in love with it. Of course, everything Christmas related was at least 50% off.  So I asked her to help me to put together one just like it.  She started pulling stuff out of her cart to arrange mine.  You can see the finished product above.  We made this for about $10.  I committed to memory how she had it arranged in the store.  When I came home I immediately put it together.  It is on my front door now.  You can see it above.  I still have to fiddle with it a bit now that I have seen the photo.

I am pretty tired out from our excursion.  I am picturing a really early bedtime tonight.  I am so glad that I went though.  One of my life's greatest gifts are my true blue friends.  We all love and accept each other as we are through thick and thin.  Acceptance and unconditional love are precious things and should be cherished.  

So now I am going to relax with my little furry friend.  She is in need of some smoochies.  She loves to be kissed all over the top of her head.  She is pretty happy to have me back home and I  am happy to see that sweet, goofy schnauzer smile.

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Perfect Day!

I have had two beautiful days of celebratory dinners over Thursday and Friday.  I have felt so grateful to be among people that I love so much.  It makes me realize that more everydays need to be celebrated.  

I needed to re-group a bit today, so I had coffee and relaxed in my pajamas for a while.  Then I decided the time had arrived to clean my craft room/office.  As I have shared in the past, that is the room that everything ends up in.  My desk had stuff just stacked up on it.  There were small pieces of fabric that I was practicing hardanger on.  There was mail that I needed to go through.  There were puppy toys that were in need of surgery.  It was quite the hodgepodge.  I was glad that I had gone through my tray that has mail in it.  I found my car registration bill that had slipped my mind.  It is due Monday!  Yikes!  All I can think is that I had angels watching over me.  (Here in California, they send out the bill in August or September for a registration that is due in late November, so it had just ended up in the bottom of the bill bin.)

I can not work in a room that is not clean so I have not been spending any time in that room.  I am the same way in the kitchen.  I can not wake up to a messy kitchen.  Nor can I cook in one.  Both are my play rooms.  I am happy to say that the room is immaculate.  The puppy toys have come through surgery successfully.  One is Liesl's absolute favorite, so she was pretty happy to play with it again.  It was a joy to sit at my desk this afternoon, listening to the classical station on Pandora, cute little dog snoozing on a handmade quilt.  It was a little bit of Heaven.  

It is amazing how invigorating it is to clean the clutter out of one's space.  It is like clearing your mind.  Everything is now nice and tidy.  It makes me feel creative again.  It is also far more comfortable.  Hopefully, it can stay like that a bit longer.  :)

I have been thinking today how blessed I am.  Even with the health issues and adversity I have faced this year, I feel so fortunate.  I feel so grateful for the quality relationships that I have in my life.  Each relationship has been strengthened as a result of being on a journey together.  I am grateful that I have access to healthy food.  I am grateful to have hobbies that make me feel alive creatively.  I am really grateful for the unconditional love and lots of antics that make me laugh from my small cute schnauzer girl.  Life is so beautiful.

Friday, November 23, 2012

Yuletide Greetings!

I hope that each of you had a really wonderful Thanksgiving.  I had a pretty awesome day myself.  I feel that I have so much to be grateful for.  While this has been a really difficult year, I still see so many blessings in it.  I truly feel grateful and I was filled with the happiness of giving thanks to God for all of the love and joy in my life.

One of my favorite traditions on Thanksgiving is to watch the dog show.  I love seeing all of the pups bathed, brushed and groomed for picture day.  Of course, my favorite group is the terrier group.  I just about fainted when the mini schnauzer got pulled out of the main group for final judging in the best of class.  Sadly, she did not make it into the top four.  Liesl said we were robbed!  I was uber happy though that the best of show was a terrier.  (I am now hearing that song,  "God Loves a Terrier" from Best of Show, playing in my mind.)

I have been working on decorating my blog for the holidays.  I am not totally feeling it for the background I have chosen.  I have looked at so many now, they are all starting to look the same.  I wanted something a bit more vintagy looking but it has not been happening thus far.  So please bear with me.  I should have it figured out by, oh, say, February or so. :)

Speaking of vintage, oh my goodness.  I am having a serious case of falling in like with fabric that I saw on the Moda Fabric Blog the other day.  It is so absolutely darling and vintage.  If you love vintage too, you must check it out.  There are several prints in the Dear Mr. Claus collection by Cosmo Cricket.  Here is a link: Dear Mr. Claus

Well, I have to go sleep off that turkey and all the carbs I ate today.  I regret nothing.  Be safe out if you go out into the Black Friday madness.  

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Happy Thanksgiving!

Wishing you a happy and blessed Thanksgiving!

Monday, November 19, 2012

Grape Expectations

I have started stitching the grapes into the second panel of my fruit bell pull.  There are, of course, a bazillion different shades of purple in each one.  However, the square is going much faster than I had originally anticipated.  Maybe I have just gotten used to all of the blended threads.  In any case, I will have to take a photo in natural daylight when I have completed the square so you can make out all of the shades in it.

When I started this piece I had really had the expectation that this was going to be a really difficult piece to stitch.  While it is one of the most difficult that I have stitched, once you get your groove, you can really see the progress somewhat quickly.  I will admit that there is no way that I could stitch this without a working copy.  It has been filled in with pink highlighter ink all over the place.

I am happy to report that Liesl is back to her perky, sassy self.  Yay!  In fact, she started to walk into mischievous territory.  I had to take her over to Petco to get her nails cut and her feet neatened up.  I do not have the courage it takes to cut her nails (she has black nails so I have no idea where the quick is.)  Plus she does not like me trimming her feet.  The super nice groomer said that terriers do not like having their feet messed with.  I was really surprised because she also said that Liesl is beautifully groomed.  I told her that I do it at home and she said that it was really impressive how I got the lines on her skirt.  Then she gave me a couple of extra tips on things I can do.  Liesl was not impressed and kept letting me know it was time to go.  

As we walked to the car, a lady came up to us exclaiming what a beautiful dog Liesl is.  Now Liesl knows when someone recognizes her stellar beauty.  The lady asked if she could pet Liesl.  Liesl went trotting right up to her.  As we walked away, Liesl had her ears all up and walking with a swagger.  She is a total diva.

I have been reflecting on all of the wonderful things in my day.  Talking with nice people, the chill in the air, good books, hot tea, and stitching.  So much beauty and so much to be thankful for.

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Poor Sick Puppy :(

Today was the last day of racing season.  It was the day that the championship was decided.  It was a good day to camp out on the sofa with my race day snacks, my furgirl, and my stitching.  An ideal day!

I made hard boiled eggs for breakfast.  Liesl's vet allows her to have one a week.  Generally she only gets them maybe twice a month.  She seemed perfectly content, and laid down to snooze.  Unfortunately, she got up and got sick.  She just looked so sad and little.  I took her outside for some fresh air.  She came in and went back to sleep on the sofa for about another hour.  I sat on the sofa and stitched while she slept.  She woke up and was walking over to me and getting ready to get sick all over my floss.  Yikes.  Luckily, crisis was averted.  

Liesl is a really healthy little dog.  She is very robust, energetic, and never gets sick.  So it was very jarring to see her looking so pitiful, with her tail down.  She was feeling yucky enough that she let me pick her up and put her in my lap a few times. (This never happens when she is well.)  I do not know if she got into something in the yard or if she got a bad egg.  She slept all day and ate the rice with chicken broth that I made her for dinner.   I am happy to report that she has brought me her ball to play with her and she has been begging for cookies for the past hour.

I feel much better now that she seems to be better.  It is another thing to be grateful for.  I was able to get a lot of stitching done since my little companion slept most of the day, although I had one eye on her at all times.  I have started on the grapes.  They are really taking shape already and I am pretty stoked about it.  

The best part of my day was my best friend calling this evening.  Her daughter had a little surgery last week so she went away for a week to help with her grandchildren.  She had called me from Denver airport last night while she was awaiting her layover.  Our connection was not so good so we could only relay the most important news of the last week.  I figured I would give her a few days to get settled before I called her.  But she called me tonight and we were able to catch up.  We have been friends for about 11 years but best friends for about the past 4-5 years.  We act more like sisters most of the time.  She had me just laughing my fool head off.  We have so much fun together so I really missed her while she was gone.

I think that I tend to appreciate the gifts that God has blessed me with.  With this week being Thanksgiving I am even more aware.  Tonight I am so grateful for all of the days that my little dog is well, for days that I get to stitch, for healthy food, and for being able to enjoy a sport that I like so much on television.  I am really grateful to have really close friendships with people who I can put complete trust in, who I can depend on, and who I could call at 3 am if I need to. (I have not  had to use this privilege, thank goodness.) Best of all, I am so glad that I have close friends who have great senses of humor, who are wise, and can make me laugh really hard.  I have a lot to be thankful for.

Saturday, November 17, 2012

A Perfect Day

Today was an absolutely perfect day.  I woke up to a rainy morning.  It felt nice and cozy to get up and have a leisurely couple of cups of coffee.  Liesl decided to doze the morning away and looked so nice and comfy.

By afternoon, it was time to clean the cozy cottage.  It was time for one of those pre-holidays deep cleans.   It was actually pretty therapeutic to work and get the house that clean.  I still have to clean my office/craft room.  You know how you have that one room that everything ends up in...  Anyway, everything else is nice and sparkly clean.  I even washed the sheets.  One of the great treasures of life is getting to sleep on fresh sheets.  

After vacuuming, scrubbing, etc., I decided to sit down and enjoy the rest of the afternoon.  I put the Mozart Requiem (a true masterpiece!) on the stereo system, made a cup of tea, and stitched while the rain continued to fall outside.  I also lit candles to keep the moisture in the air to a minimum (this also makes it seem warmer.) It was so lovely.  I am making progress on the grapes square.  I will have to put a little purple in there in the next few days.  

After my decadent afternoon, I decided to make leftover pizza for dinner and catch up on the new season of Real Housewives of Beverly Hills.  As my shows ended, Liesl decided it was time to be perky and play with her momma.  

Now I must tell you that Liesl is one of the happiest little dogs that I know.  She smiles a lot and just thinks that everything is pretty gosh darn exciting.  Just her walk is so happy, that I sometimes giggle when I watch her.  Tonight I played hide and seek with her, which is her favorite game.  Then we rough housed for a while, played with her ball and her bunny.  She got a bunch of hugs and gave me a few kisses.  She got her blankets washed today, too.  So she is all tucked in and dreaming happy puppy dreams of chasing squirrels.

The rain has stopped for a while and I am now all relaxed and ready to read my book.  Days like this are such a blessing.  It is wonderful to be home and to take the time to reflect on all that I am grateful for.  It is on days like this when I feel like I am totally in the moment, and the pace of the day is dramatically different.  What a gift!

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Here Comes The Rain Again...

Well, four days of rain are about to start here on the Monterey Peninsula.  This will probably mean indoor fun most of the weekend.  This is okay with me and I am already imagining hot cocoa, perhaps getting out the sewing machine, snuggling with a cute little dog, and some classical music in the background.  It sounds heavenly.

One of my favorite things about the Thanksgiving holiday is that the dog show is on that day.  Liesl and I will be cheering on all three sizes of schnauzer (although they are ALL big dogs!)  This is the show that John O'Hurley is a part of.  You can tell he is a bona fide dog lover.  I am looking forward to seeing all of the pretty dogs all cleaned up and brushed out. 

I was talking with one of my close friends and fellow schnauzer momma today.  She was telling me that her schnauzer has to cut back on the treats.  Schnauzers are notorious for eating more than they should.  I mentioned that I give Liesl veggies for snack.  Sometimes I will nuke a small potato or a small sweet potato.  They last for a couple of days.  Veggies are really good for dogs and are a better lo cal option for treats.  My friend said that she was reminded that her dog loves cucumbers and tomatoes.  She said that she was going to cut some up to keep at the ready for dog treats.  There are some really great Kong recipes using vegetables like potato with a little chicken broth.  This is a good alternative to peanut butter.  Liesl will not touch peanut butter so I look for other options.  You can google Kong recipes.  There are lots of them.  

It is nice to be all tucked in and ready to go to sleep.  I will read my book for as long as my eyes will stay open, which is probably about 30 seconds.  

Be well!

Wednesday, November 14, 2012


I looked out the window this evening to see this beautiful, take your breath away gorgeous sunset.  As you can see there is a beam of light shooting straight up.  The sun had already sunk behind the mountains, so what looks like the sun is actually a beam from it.
I am stitching this evening, however, I had another craft project earlier.  I have shared in the past that I groom Liesl myself.  I had a wonderful groomer, but Liesl just became so anxious when I dropped her off.   It was brutal to watch.  She would be panting, shaking and drooling, something she never does otherwise.   Schnauzers have hair (and do not shed) instead of fur so they have to be groomed every few weeks.    I finally decided it was time to learn myself this year.

Now grooming Liesl is a multi-stage process that take place over the course of a couple of weeks.  Liesl is patient for only so long, then she starts wiggling and pulling away.  So I do things in small parts.  I will shave her neck, back, tummy, and hind quarters all at once.  By this time my clippers have usually gotten hot and she is over it.  So we stop.   Today, it was the most scary for me time of all.  It was time to do her head.  

The head is really tricky because, understandably, she does not like the clippers on her face.  Add the scissors snipping around her eyes and beard and you have the perfect storm.  Plus there is the stress of her ending up with a really bad looking home made haircut.  Get the bowl...

Today, Liesl decided to be absolutely perfect.  So so so perfect.  I shaved the parts of her head without any struggle, even her neck.  Then she sat still while I trimmed her eyebrows, did the dark patches around her eyes, then trimmed that fabulous beard.  I keep her beard short because she drags it around while she is sniffing and she gets it dirty quickly.  Again, she sat still and let me trim her beard.  She looks so pretty.  I keep telling her how pretty she is.  She loves that.  She is so proud of herself that she was a good girl, too.  

My camera is pretty slow so the only photo I could get was one where she was finally asleep. Usually I just getting a photo of her tail as she is moving around or a photo of the rug where she used to be...

It is experiences like this that make me appreciate her even more.  She has days where she is beyond belief stubborn.  However, more often she is pretty accommodating and is such a joy to have as a companion.   

Sunday, November 11, 2012


It is really cold here right now.  I came home from church just feeling like I was freezing.  I turned on the heat but it was too late, the cold was already in my bones.  I have just felt chilly all day.  I have tried socks, slippers, sweats, a blanket, all to no avail.  I am one of those people who can tolerate heat much more than the cold.  Once my feet get cold, I am one cranky cross stitcher.

I had gotten under my blanket to watch the NASCAR race today.  I think that was the craziest race I have ever seen.  It had a fistfight, an insane crash at the end that took out half the field, and Jimmie Johnson finished 33rd.  I would never have believed the insanity if I had not beheld it with my own eyes.

Speaking of television...I will share with you that I am an educated person.  I adore classical music, classic literature, documentaries, particularly those about ancient cultures, the ballet, and the opera.  However, when it comes to television, I am a reality TV junkie.  I love me some RHONJ, RHOBH, Duck Dynasty, Storage Wars, Long Island Medium, and various other reality show offerings.  Today, however, a line was crossed for me when I saw that Discovery was advertising a  show called, "Amish Mafia."  What the heck?  After that, I had to put down my remote, take a deep breath and decided it was time to read a book.  

So now I have come to the end of the day.  The Furry One has been tucked in and given her night night kiss.  I am left to reflect on the day.  I have been thinking today about the sacrifices that have been made by others in service to this country.  I think of the fact that we have so many opportunities as a result of so many others who have put their lives on the line.  Today we thank our veterans and honor the service that you have given to this country.  We are forever in your debt.   

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Square One, Done!

Well, here it is.  Square One is d-u-n, done!  A big thank you to quiltluvr for the advice on how to post a more color realistic photo.  She recommended putting it near a window and taking a photo in daylight, without the flash.  So now you can see that it is almost psychedelic in color.  Groovy, baby!

Anyway, I am happy dancing that I got this far.  I get to move the fabric up on the scroll bars and start the grapes square.  I am pretty excited about it.  It is like getting to begin a new project.  

We had a night of rain which has given way to a clear but cold day.  Liesl and I took a brisk walk this morning, but have remained inside otherwise.  It has been really cold.  It has been such a good day to be cuddled inside with a schnauzer.  She has found a nice sunny spot to lay in and is snoozing away.  I love days like this.  What a gift!

Hope you are having an enjoyable fall day, too!

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Don't Know Why...

...There's no sun up in the sky, stormy weather...Well, it is rainin' all over town here on the Monterey Peninsula.  Rain is one of the happiest sounds I know of.  It is so peaceful and so relaxing.  It made for a perfect stitchy night.  I got to watch the eliminations on The Voice tonight and stitch.  So here is my progress, thus far...

I am working on the backstitching and getting those little odds and ends cross stitches in.  I really wish that you could see how truly vibrant the colors are in person.  This is so beautiful.  I should have the first square totally completed this weekend.  I am going to do the vines on the border all at once.  I am so happy with how this is turning out.  It really will be an heirloom piece when it is done.

This is a really challenging piece, however, it is so beautiful.  If you have this OOP pattern in your collection, it is totally worth it to go ahead and stitch it.  I happen to like challenges and BAPs so this is working for me.  :)

I believe that all of us continue to hold the survivors of Sandy in our thoughts and prayers.  There are moments when I am watching the news where I join these good people in their tears.  So many have lost absolutely everything.  So many are cold and still without electricity.  May they know comfort and peace.  

Be well and stay safe.

Wednesday, November 7, 2012


Well, I can't fall asleep.  I have frequent bouts of insomnia, which really bothers me.  I have found that the best way for me to deal with it is to not lay there looking at the ceiling.  It always seems to help if I get up and read, catch up on email, drink warm milk, or watch TV.  Although I have found that if I put Craig Ferguson on, I start laughing too much and want to stay up longer.  He is so goofy.  Anyway, it does help to do something other than trying to fall asleep.  

I got to have a personal floss untangling party this evening.  When I wound my floss onto bobbins last week for my project, I left one card of all greens as is.  However, since green is the most used color in the bellpull, there are a lot of different colors.  Every time I pulled a section out, it would cause the others to get all tangled.  Plus I had several that I had taken one thread from but not put back on the card.  They were going kind of free range all over the sofa.  Finally, I decided that I had had enough.  So tonight when I got home I wound all of them onto bobbins.  Some of the bobbins have so much floss on them you can't even see that bobbin itself.  Then I matched up all of the willy nilly floss to the correct bobbin and put everything into a ziploc bag.  BTW, what did we ever do before ziploc bags?

It is nice to feel like my project is totally organized now.  I can not believe how much floss there is.  It will be interesting to see these bobbins get whittled down over the course of the project.  

I am finally getting to the point that I think I am very close to backstitching.  I have been trying to fill the holes that are missing a stitch first.  On a side note, if you are considering working this project, do check out Teresa Wentzler's web page as there are errors in the chart.  She has noted the errors and the corrections on her web site.  It has been extremely helpful so far.  

The eyelids are starting to feel heavy.  I am off to count my blessings and say my prayers.  

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Almost Done, Square 1

Well, I have almost completed the first block of the fruit bell pull.  I have to finish up a few small items here and there.  Then I have to back stitch.  Ugh. You can probably detect from the photo how many colors are in just the peaches.  I do love the colors.  Unfortunately, a photo does not really capture the depth of the colors.  It is so pretty!  Yay!  The next square is a cluster of grapes on the vine.  

This is an absolutely stunning piece. It is one of the most challenging pieces I have ever stitched.  I know why so many shy away from Teresa Wentzler's designs.  There are no blocks of color.  It is almost all confetti stitching with blended threads.  However, it is so rewarding to stitch a piece like this.  

The time change is kind of nice.  I woke up way too early for church.  It was kind of nice to have a couple of hours to have an extra cup of coffee.  Unfortunately, I forgot that time change affects puppies.  Yikes.  Poor Liesl was looking for her dinner at the appointed time, which was not the same time that it was yesterday.  I felt terrible.  Luckily, I had her favorite dinner in the oven.  I was making baked chicken breast, roasted yam, and broccoli.  Every single one of her favorite foods.  She was so excited that she was doing spins in the kitchen while I was making up her little plate. (She wolfs hers down and then comes and works on me with big brown schnauzer eyes for mine.)  I think she forgave me.  I had made a little fruit plate for myself for dessert.  Liesl decided that she should also have half of my sliced bananas.  (I do not mind when she wants fruits and veggies.)  She did something she never does, afterwards.  She gave me a little kiss.  It made my day.  

Today was All Saint's Sunday at church.  This is the day that we honor and remember those that who have passed on.  This has been a really difficult year full of some really significant losses of people for me.  It was kind of peaceful to have that time honor and to pray for those who have been important in my life.  I feel as though I have been getting angel visits lately, as I have had some really amazing coincidences in the past couple of weeks.  

May your week be blessed with all good things.