More Black Belt Stitching Wizard Stuff

Sunday, December 30, 2007

Looking Towards 2008 & January Goals

Well since I know we'll be busy on New Year's Eve I figured it was best to get this done and put out there for the world to see today.

I've scrolled back to my last entry in December of 2006 to see what goals I had set myself for 2007 and here they are :
  • Finish Noah's Submarine (yes!)
  • Finish Tour Des Marques (not even 1/2 done)
  • Finish The Castle (yes!)
  • Stitch Todd's Stocking (nope)

2008 Stitching Goals

  • Finish Tour Des Marques
  • Finish Paradigm Lost
  • Stitch Todd's Stocking
  • Stitch Enchantment of Winter for Dad
  • Start Arabian Woman
  • Start Scottish Castle Sampler
  • Stitch Moonlight Guardian

I think I'm being a little ambitious for the upcoming year... but there's a lot of large projects out there I really want to stitch. Some of these have been on my want to start list for years so this year it'll be one of my goals to get them started so I have to work on them!

Now its time to review my December goals and set goals for January (yes these are beyond my main goals for 2008).

December 2007

  • Finish The Castle (Yes!)
  • Work on Paradigm Lost (Yes)
  • Work on next RR that shows up (didn't show up until just before x-mas)
  • Stitch Fair&Square rd.4 (done & mailed)
  • Stitch Ornaments (did 3)
  • Work on Pomegranate Needlebook (yes & finished)

January 2008

  • Start Moonlight Guardian
  • Work on Paradigm Lost
  • Work on Tour
  • Stitch RR
  • Stitch one ornament
  • Stitch two models (when the supplies get here)

Needless to say not a lot of stitching got done yesterday with my new toy to play with, I did put in a little time on Mini Cottages 5. Today I plan to start that RR so it'll be done and out of the way ASAP!

Saturday, December 29, 2007

Todd Finally Got Me My Pressie

Well this morning we were sitting around, Todd playing on the PS2, me stitching away. When he says to me, I want to get you a new laptop for Christmas.

Ummmm okay!

So surfed online at all the local electronics shops and found myself a good deal on a Toshiba Satellite with a Duo Centrino Processor. Yay a fast computer that doesn't start to lag when I have multiple programs open or running Photoshop Elements.

I've been playing all day setting things up, moving files and so on.

So shall we consider Todd redeemed?

Photo Hunt #85 "Hot"

This is the Eternal Flame (or Centennial Flame as it is less commonly known as), its at the very top center of the walkway that leads to the entrance to Parliament Hill in Ottawa, Canada. It was lit just past midnight on Canada's Centennial it is surronded by water and the shields of each of Canada's Provinces. It represents our unity from sea to sea.

Paradigm Lost SAL Week 8

Here you go folks, my 8th week of working on Paradigm Lost! Its coming right along but I think the medallion I'm working on right now is one of the bigger ones and will take awhile to complete. So tonight's progress was the dragonfly (which I've been dying to stitch forever!) and two arms of the large medallion.

Tomorrow I'll settle in here at home while the snow flies (yet again) and I think I'll pull out Mini Cottages 5!

Friday, December 28, 2007

Answering An Old SBQ

Gosh I've been just horrible, not answering SBQ's at all for ages. I keep "saving" them for days I have nothing to blog about... but I always seem to find something to prattle on about.

Here's the one from December 19th

Q : Have you ever helped anyone else learn to stitch? Have you ever helped anyone learn a new stitch or technique?

A : Oh yes! Its a requirement to be one of my friends! LOL! Just kidding, however if you're a friend of mine I'll certainly try to teach you how to stitch. I've even been successful with my two best friends, Claire and Christin, I've even taught Christin's aunt Sue! I often see/think about how fast these people have progressed in their stitching knowledge/abilities. I spent YEARS afraid of linen and evenweave fabrics, I had these girls on them ASAP! They have really gotten to benefit from all of my trials and errors.

I've often helped other stitchers with new techniques and stitches! From sitting down with someone whose frustrated with french knots, teaching the colonial knot instead to teaching other stitchers finishing techniques. I like to help other stitchers, teach them tricks, and tips that make stitching so much easier and enjoyable!

I think deep down at heart I am a teacher... I like to help!

Today I've done my best to keep myself busy so I'm not sitting here sulking over the present thing that I mentioned yesterday. I started yesterday and finished today my gift for the Stitching Blogger's Birthday Exchange. I spent a few hours this afternoon on the finishing, and I got to try a new technique! Yay! I'm very impressed with how it turned out and I hope my recipient (who I don't know at all and her blog isn't in English so its hard to figure out her likes and dislikes... Babelfish didn't do a good job with translating either so I gave up) likes it.

When I'm done online I'm going to pull Paradigm Lost out for the first time in a few weeks.

Thursday, December 27, 2007

50th Happy Dance of 2007!

As I sit here typing this entry on my laptop, big, fluffy, white snowflakes are falling from the sky (again). We had a bit of a melt over the weekend which left my driveway a dangerous skating rink! I think when this snow is all said and done sometime tomorrow we should have another 13cm.

Sorry I haven't blogged in days, I had fully intended to blog the last few days but first I got wrapped up in Christmas. I had family over for Christmas Eve, and went to my parents for Christmas dinner. In between the celebrations I worked on Christmas Elf Fairy as much as I could, but still it wasn't enough for a Christmas Day finish, nor a boxing day finish. I put the last beads in her just 30 minutes ago! Without further ado...

Christmas Elf Fairy (kit)
c2005 Mirabilia Designs
Stitched on : 32ct Precous Metals Opalescent Lugana (Silkweavers)
Stitched with : Crescent Colours, Whisper, Kreinik #4 Braid & Mill Hill Beads

I have to say my new Tacky Bob made beading sooo much more manageable, beads weren't rolling all over the place, nor getting lost in my lap! Definitely worth the money if you don't have one! Oh yes, my chart if up for trade (see wish list on sidebar) or sale if anyone is interested its unmarked and in good shape! Just e-mail me (tkd underscore chick at hotmail dot com)!

Next up in the stitching roster is something for the Stitching Blogger's Birthday Exchange. My partner's birthday is next month and I've got to get something in the mail ASAP! Ack! I've picked out what I'm going to stitch, and its all kitted up ready to start after I'm done online.

I hope everyone had a great Christmas full of family and friends... and hopefully some great gifts (of course we all prefer stitchy gifts!). I have to say Todd totally failed this year. Needless to say he felt I didn't need any of the big items I put on my list so all I got from him was two DVD's... not wrapped nor the prices taken off just shoved in my stocking the morning of. I have to say that made me feel like crap, and it still does. After 15 years you'd think he'd know me and my likes and manage to pick up SOMETHING for me. This is twice this year he's managed to seriously disappoint me on special days (the last one was my d-day when I sat at home by myself until 11:30pm didn't even come home with a card). He used to be very good that this sort of thing and I feel at times in his eyes I'm not worth the effort anymore, or I'm just being taken for granted that I'm still here, and I still love him.

Here are my two favorite gifts this year, both from my Mum, who managed to totally surprise me! I had no idea she was making either one (yes both hand made)!

Tiger Quilt

Beaded Tiger

Sunday, December 23, 2007

The Tree Is Finally Up!

Yup! I finally had Todd drag the tree and the box of decorations upstairs. I've spent the afternoon putting up, fluffing, and decorating the tree. Like many of us my tree is an eclectic one. I don't actually put up a lot of glass ornaments.

Why? Do you ask? I'm sure this picture will tell all!

Yesterday between being in bed with yet another migraine I did get in a few hours on Christmas Elf Fairy. I'm getting ready to settle down and work on her some more.

Saturday, December 22, 2007

Photo Hunt #84 " I Love ______"

LOL I suppose I love Todd most days. Here he is in the role of domestic godess, sewing a patch on his Ju-Jitsu uniform.

Friday, December 21, 2007

Sweet, Sweet Freedom!

Yay! Christmas shopping is done, food is bought... the tree is not up! Best of all, I'm off of work for two weeks! Yippeee!

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Where Have You Been ... What Have You Been Doing?

Greetings everyone! Sorry I haven't blogged in DAYS! I've been busy/tired/migraines! Pick one and its been happening! I'm sooo looking forward to the massage I've got booked next Thursday. Needless to say not much stitching has been happening in my house!

Tuesday I was knocked on my ass by yet ANOTHER migraine! So, no stitching. I think I'm just stressed by the season... getting the gifts bought... work... the weather.

Wednesday was my running around day to get things done for Christmas (except for my fruit & veg. I'll get that tomorrow). We had MORE snow! At least another 10cm... I think we got a little more than that. This snow made driving a nightmare (see the above picture), my couple of hours worth of running around and shopping turned into six and a half hours! Once I got home I had ornaments to ornamentify, it took me until 12:30am but they're all done. Here's this year's bounty of ornaments (a total of 17).

Today I got to come right home after work! Yay! My ornaments are all packed up to give out at work tomorrow. I tell you that's a huge relief. I'm so looking forward to tomorrow, the last day of school! Then I don't have to step foot in the building until January 7th, 2008!!! I had a parcel and a card waiting for me in the mail today, what a lovely treat! Beatrice sent me a card with a couple of lovely DMC Light Effects in it. I also got this lovely Christmas ornament from and made by Jennifer Aikman-Smith (of Dragon Dreams), its sitting on the fabric for Moonlight Guardian that Jen was kind enough to pick up for me because I was having a hard time locating the required fabric in 28ct. Thanks Jen! The Santa is just too cute!

Now that this is all done, my biggest decision is what to stitch on tonight? Paradigm Lost, since I haven't participated in the SAL this week? Or Christmas Elf Fairy which I'd like done before the big day (not that its going to make it on the wall!).

Monday, December 17, 2007

Framing, Ornament, and Tour Oh My!

Well my drive into work wasn't as horrendous as I had feared it would be, but the board did call a snow day so it was nice and quiet at work!

The first thing I did when I got home tonight was finish up that framing job. Boy, this one was a lot of work! But you know what it looks great! Framed with a simple black frame, and mounted on a black suede mat. It looks sexy!

Once the framing job was finished I finally got to sit down and stitch. I finished up my second Victoria Sampler ornament. I have to say these Beyond Cross Stitch kits are great! They're pretty easy to stitch up and a cool way to learn new stitches. This kit taught me how to do a spider web rose in silk ribbon. I'm pretty pleased with myself over this one!

Christmas Rose
c2000 Thea Duek - Victoria Sampler
Stitched on 25ct White Lugana
Using : DMC floss & perle cotton, #4 kreinik, mill hill beads, silk ribbon

I also got in about an hour and a half in on Tour Des Marques! Wow two weeks in a row, almost a record for me.

Tomorrow when I get home I'll start ornamentification, then the big decision will be what to stitch on next... another ornament? Christmas Elf Fairy? Hmmmm....

Here are some photo's from the snow storm's aftermath. Pretty isn't it?

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Starting To Dig Out

Well the snow isn't over yet, but its finally slowed down. From reports on the news we're due for another 5cm by 4am when it should be all done and over with. I think we've had in the area of 30cm of snow so far.

This is what our drive looked like before Todd started the snow blowing at 10pm... an hour and a half later he's still out there! He have a HUGE snow drift in the middle of our yard. I'll have to get pictures of that in the morning when there's light outside.

Despite my dislike of winter, you can find beauty in it. Jack frost has paid us a bit of a visit, leaving artwork on some of our windows.

Now all of you who think this is just wonderful and beautiful all this snow (I know you're southerners!)... those of us who live with it from one year to the next just aren't thrilled by it at all. It means hard work getting our driveways passable and walkways cleared. If you live on or near a main road you may be lucky and your roads will be ploughed. If you don't you'll be lucky not to get stuck. I know I'll have to leave early for work tomorrow, and I'm sure my 20 minute drive will probably be more in the realms of 60 minutes. So far none of the school boards in the city have called a snow day... we probably won't know into the wee hours of the morning, I think my board usually makes that decision between 4:30-5am. Even once a snow day is called I am still supposed to make my way into work or the nearest school in our board... which for me means the school I work at! With Todd clearing out the drive now I can't see why I won't be able to make it into work... just take my time and not worry about being late.

Today I did manage to get that Sens jersey mounted. I have to say it took me several hours, and my hands and especially my thumbs were sore for most of the afternoon. I never did get around to getting my beads into watchmaker cases. After finishing up mounting the jersey I just vegged out with my laptop, reading a few blogs, commenting, and changing the format of my wish list. Previously it was an excel file you could save from my webspace, but I've found out that this doesn't work for everyone. So I started up a second blog with my wish list... there is an entry for each designer then I've listed the design(s) I'd like. This should be more user friendly now... I hope. If anyone has suggestions for improvement be sure to let me know!

This evening during the Survivor finale I finished up the ornament I started late last night, and started a second one.

Boughs of Holly
c2000 Thea Dueck - Victoria Sampler
Beyond Cross Stitch 2-3
Stitched on : 25ct white lugana
Stitched with : DMC floss & perle cotton, Kreinik #4 Braid & Wildflowers

Boy... I've got to do some ornamentification this week! Well before Friday at the latest... I hope my new cording drill shows up!

Settling In For The Storm

Well we woke up this morning to guess what??? Yup, SNOW and lots of it coming down. Before its all said and done tomorrow morning, we're supposed to get anywhere from 30-55cm. So, what better day to stay in and get things done.

So far I've managed to clear off the kitchen table so I can get to mounting that Sens jersey I'm framing. Next I cleared off/organized the desk in my crafting room. I really need to get rid of that thing, its a waste of space and pretty much useless. I'd like to replace it with another folding table. I've got beads organized to go in watchmaker cases. Oh yes and my frame for the jersey is cut and currently gluing.

My main task for today is to take my time and get the jersey mounted. Its my first time doing this so I'd like it done right. Then all that would leave me is to pick up and put in the glass tomorrow and it'll be ready for delivery on Tuesday.

Last night I started on the wings for Christmas Elf Fairy, she's coming along nicely. Then at around midnight I decided I wasn't going to have enough ornaments stitched up for Christmas... so of course I started one. It'll be a quickie so I'm not worried about it not getting done in time.

Also I spent some time last getting ready for my next start! Every January 1st for the last few years Chrisanne, Christin and I have started a new project on New Year's Day. This past year its was The Castle, and the start before that was Celtic Banner. This year Beatrice is joining us on our new start. I spent some time pulling threads for Moonlight Guardian from Dragon Dreams. We decided back in August at the Knowledge & Needles Retreat when the four of us were together that this would be our January 1st start! At the moment I'm waiting for fabric to show up in the mail. I also need to get a second pack of beads, and a couple of spools of Kreinik #4 braid. I've got enough to get started... but I know there won't be enough.

Saturday, December 15, 2007

Oops! Forgot To Share!

Gosh darn it, I think I'm loosing it in my old age! I keep forgetting to do/blog things!

Last night while I was out doing my running around I finally found the festive issue of the magazine "A Needle Pulling Thread". What does this mean? That I can share with you the model I stitched back in October!

January Carnation Fairy
by Dyan Allaire
Stitched on : 28ct black lugana
Using : DMC, Kreinik & Mill Hill Beads
Now that I've got my picture up I'm realizing this isn't the best picture. They've got a much better one in the magazine.

Finally A Stitching Update

Sorry that I haven't really blogged over the last few days, I was getting pretty consistent at it too! Its the silly season!

Grrrr... no I'm getting annoyed. I was just wrapping up a lovely post for you when my thumb hit the touch pad on my laptop and somehow managed to highlight and delete all of my entry except for the first sentence. Just as I tried to restore it... blogger auto saved the entry. So what I typed is definitely long gone now! Grrrr!

So Thursday evening and part of Friday night I worked on Paradigm Lost. The nice thing about this not being a set in stone SAL is you can change the day you work on it with no problems! On Thursday I almost managed to finish the motif i started the week before, so I decided that I'd work on it again on Friday to finish up that motif. While I had it pulled out I felt it would be fun to do a couple of the tiny motifs, and I got a small start on the dragonfly's wing. As I'm sure I've said before this is an enjoyable project.

Now as for Christmas Elf Fairy... I've had to do some frogging! Honestly I should of known better. On Wednesday night I was up for a few hours before heading back t bed with my migraine, so I thought well I could stitch. Yeah... right! By Thursday morning I had pretty much finished up her boots. In daylight I started to notice a colour difference. Crap! 3/4 of the way through the first boot I somehow switched from Black Coffee the colour I'm supposed to use to Zack Black. So I had to rip out a boot and 1/4. Last night I pulled her back out for a little bit after I was done with PL I finished up the first boot. When I pick her back up this weekend I'll get those boots finished up and move onto the wings.

I've got a framing job to get started on this weekend, I am framing for a client a Sens jersey, its a Christmas present. This will be my first time framing a jersey but I know how its supposed to be done. Fingers crossed I can get it mounted beautifully! Unfortunately this means I have to go outside today... right now its -21c and that's without the windchill. Its supposed to be super cold today. Then starting tonight we're supposed to get a HUGE dump of snow. I've heard reports of up to 30cm! For you Imperial folks, that's the height of a standard ruler! Its going to be fun and games getting to work on Monday!

Five days of work left!!!!

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Happy Belated B-Day Emma!

Gosh I'm a horrible Aunt! On Sunday we went over to my parents to have a little family dinner and cake for my niece's 7th Birthday which was on the 11th. I meant to post this picture on the actual day ... then I forgot!

I didn't work on Paradigm Lost at all last night like I should of. I'm having problems with Migraines again. All week I've had a headache that kept threatening to turn into a migraine. Well it finally did yesterday afternoon. After getting home from work and sleeping for four hours I still felt like crap so I called in sick for today. I'm feeling a little more functional but the migraine is still there.

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

I Got RACJ'ed!

Today I received a Random Act of Christmas Joy! At least that's what I'm calling it! This afternoon on my way home I stopped in at the General Store to pick up my mail. There was a parcel oh so gently shoved into my P.O. box (note the sarcasm). At first I just assumed it was the next Neighbourhood RR, then I looked at the return address. It was from Judy! I wasn't expecting anything from Judy at all (you may recall she won my 800th post draw earlier this year and I made her a needlebook)!

Here's the contents of her parcel!

A beautifully stitched pair of mitts! I've got them hanging up with my Christmas cards in my living room. Two Laura Secord chocolate santas which are long gone by now (Chocolate does not have a shelf life around here), gourmet hot chocolates which I will enjoy as this week winds down to Friday, and a beautiful Santa ornament for my tree. Thank you so much Judy such a pleasant surprise after driving home in another heavy snowfall.

We're supposed to get another 2-4 cm of snow ... however it was snowing when I was driving home at 4pm and its still coming down at 11pm.

I did stitch tonight but not like the madwoman I've been over the last few weeks. I'm tired and I'm ready for Christmas break! Only 8 working days to go. This time of year is always the hardest to get through... I'm sick of making lunches for work, sick of getting up, sick of deciding what to wear to work. C'mon Christmas break! I think only those who work in education will understand the grueling pace you go at during the school year. We just go, go, go and when Christmas comes along you're about ready to drop!