More Black Belt Stitching Wizard Stuff

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Stitching Progress & Photo Hunt

Boy, all I wanted to do this week was STITCH!  Too bad silly things like work, and exercise kept getting in the way!  Besides those silly things I think I did well this week.

Teresa Wentzler's Byzantine Ornament #3

The Accolade, almost finished another row on this!

The end of Art Deco Spirits is getting closer and closer!  I'm filling in all the black at the moment

I missed last week's PhotoHunt, so I'll get us caught up on that before I get to this week's in my next post.  The theme for last week was "Hands"

This is from my friend Jason's wedding in July of 2010, I stitched Wedding Row for Jason & Roxanne

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Murphy's Law Monday

I love Mondays... did you catch the sarcasm in that?

This Monday was an especially brutal in more ways than one!

First of all, we woke  up to -30c... that was without the windchill.  Due to the cold temperatures and my car not having a block heater, and not in the garage... it didn't want to start.  Todd first tried to start the car at about 6:40am he finally got it going at 9am!

While he was outside in the freezing cold trying to get my poor little car-car started I knew the furnace just wasn't working right.  You could hear it start to pump oil from the tank, the furnace would prime, the fan would come on for about 45 seconds then it would cut out and the whole process would start again.  There were fumes in the house that had started to burn my eyes after a few hours and we were struggling to maintain a consistent temperature.  I just knew it wasn't right but I had to get into work!  Because of our concern for the fumes and the cats we did leave a window open when we left the house. 

Todd and I agreed I would call the oil company (we have oil heat) who we have a service plan on our furnace with and deal with this.  Unfortunately if Todd doesn't work he doesn't get paid, whereas I have a personal day and sick days.  I was a little flustered when they asked me if I could be back at the house an hour later for a service man.  So I pretty much left work not long after I got there.  It took the poor service guy until 2:30 PM to fix my furnace!

Excuse my french, but what a shitty day!

I swear I'm never going to feel warm  ever again!

I was able to make some use of my time at home (besides trying to keep warm), I did the finishing on my latest snowflake.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

First Annual Knowledge & Needles January Retreat

Early on in the fall Ann, owner of Knowledge and Needles decided  to host a new retreat for 2011.  She wanted to open up a retreat to a different group of stitchers, instead of the usual suspects you have seen in quite a few of my past retreat reports.  She set this one up first for her Friday Stitchers and then the remaining spots were opened up.  I of course e-mailed Ann back in September letting her know if there were any extra spots or drop outs that I would be happy to come.  The retreat took place at the usual spot, the Timberhouse Bed & Breakfast in Brighton.

Snowy, cold weather kept us inside stitching

I had met some of the Friday stitchers on past visits to Brighton, so I knew some of the ladies.  Also some of my good stitching friends were there, some of the usual suspects you have seen in the past on this blog.  This retreat, my roommate was Bonnie, we had the same room as we did back in November which was nice, we had a King Sized bed!!!  Boy did we stitch this weekend!  The weather really helped in this endeavour because it snowed and it was cold!  During the spring and fall retreats I always do my best to get out for a run each morning, now I am a fair weather runner, there is no way you're going to catch me out in the snow running!

I think at this point, I'm going to let the pictures do the talking!

The ladies chatting over Saturday morning breakfast

Ann & Sharon consulting over the DMC colour card

Sharon was pooped from stitching!  She couldn't make it in November I was so glad to see her this weekend.  She's moved further away so I dearly miss her!

The "stitching room" at Ann's set  up for lunch

Loot bags at our place settings

Chef Butthead aka "Dan" explaining Saturday's lunch menu

Ham, amazing potatoes and broccoli for lunch.  Ann made a great marmalade cake which I forgot to photograph

Saturday night I lit a bunch of candles for atmosphere and I got this awesome picture!

Ann (not Knowledge & Needles Ann) was so intent on her work this weekend!  Her enthusiasm was contagious!

Brenda was fairly new to the group and we had a few good chats

Judie checking out Fran's work

Wendy, I've not seen her in awhile either!

Clare intent on a happy dance this past weekend!  I love getting  to see Clare its just too bad she lives over 5 hours from me!

Back in September Bonnie showed up to our get together with a great stitching bag... well they're becoming popular... notice we're in alphabetical order?

So ladies, another fantastic retreat!  I can't wait for the next one in March at the tail end of March Break!  I'm coming back from Arizona just in time to attend!

So what did I get done this weekend?  Lots!

Art Deco Spirits - Air

The Accolade

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Stitching Progress

Sorry I haven't posted in awhile, there's been two reasons... first of all I'm enjoying my stitching so much that I haven't wanted to "distract" myself with the computer.  On top of really wanting to stitch I've been physically and mentally exhausted.  I've been pushing myself to stay up to my regular bed time just so I can stitch more.

So here's the progress on my WIPs as of bedtime Wednesday...

Art Deco Spirits, Water is coming along beautifully and I'm enjoying her!  Its also been nice to know that when I am done with a particular colour... I'm done!  Its such a nice feeling to know you won't be working with that colour again.

The Accolade, I've been working on this every day, a 10x10 block at a time before I pick up Art Deco Spirits.  I am loving it!  There is something just so pleasing about stitching over one!  Yes, yes, I'm a sick, sick girl.

I finished another snowflake... just one more to go!  I still haven't done the finishing, yet can't let that resolution slip yet!
Snowflake Cross Stitch Gold
Stitched on 28ct Ivory Jubilee
Stitched with DMC floss

I went to Tuesday stitching again this week, really enjoyed it again, my friend Amy from work joined me too!  She's not a die-hard stitcher like the rest of us... but she shall be converted!  Yes Amy, I've got you in my sights (she's a blog lurker)!  I did cut out early for two reasons though, bad weather and I was just exhausted!

I have some new stash to share with you... but I forgot to photograph it and well I can't be bothered to get the camera back out, so you'll just have to wait.

On Monday... it was FREAKIN' cold out... that's my weather station, so it really was -26 Celsius at my house and that didn't include the wind chill.  We've been having a cold week and I don't like it at all.

Hunter was being cute again... we caught him beating up my lunch bag Sunday afternoon!  Gosh he's so easy to photograph!

Saturday, January 15, 2011

PhotoHunt - January 15 "Shadow"

This is a favourite photo of mine.  I was working in my craft/stash room, and Hunter came and made himself comfortable on the table.  I just love how the sunlight is filtering through the blinds.

Friday, January 14, 2011

I'm A Bag Lady!!!

I am a bag lady, I LOVE bags.  Now this love of bags fortunately isn't detrimental to my pocket book but there's nothing I enjoy more than a new bag and deciding what its for, what I'm going to put into it and how.

With the aid of Bonnie and Beatrice I've got two more bags to add to the collection!

Back in the fall I was drooling over Bonnie's new monogrammed stitching bag, loved the colours, the design and the monogram.  I also love the fact that it has a flat bottom and stays standing up.  She's here for an overnight visit as her and Blair were attending the Ottawa Senators game tonight and they are always more than welcome to stay with us, instead of spending money on a hotel.  So Bonnie asked me if I still wanted one, and deliver she did!  Thank you Bonnie I love it!

She also delivered a little gift from Beatrice.  Beatrice is a whiz at sewing and figuring out how to make things she sees.  In the fall a fellow stitcher had these great fabric "project envelopes".  She has figured out how to make them and has gifted me with one!  Thank you Beatrice, I love it and will put it to good use!

Here's the PhotoHunt from December 19, 2009 the theme was "Curved"

I came across this "lifesaver" while out for a walk with Bonnie back at retreat in November, its curved!

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

First Stash of the Year!

Once upon a time I used to buy a lot of stash, I don't buy anywhere near as much as I used to.  Part of that is because I already have a lot of it... I mean a lot, I have a room.  I have a good selection of fabrics and fibers, and well so many charts I don't know where to start!  The main reason I haven't been buying charts like I used to is because a lot of what's being released these days just aren't to my tastes.  Yes there's one here or there I'd like to have but nothing on the scale I used to purchase charts in.  The up side to this... I have lots to stitch!

So over the holidays I ordered myself a new pair of designer Gingers!  That seems to be my latest craze, collecting these fancy-handled beauties!  These Sonia scissors are my latest acquisition.

Here's the whole Gingher family I've put together chez Dani.

Thanks to everyone who pointed out where my mistake was on the ornament I posted a few days ago.  Some of you have asked had I found it yet?  Yes I have, and look the circle meets up!

Here's the PhotoHunt from November 28, 2010 the theme was "technology"
One of the highlights of my adult years has been witnessing this piece of technology rocketing off into space.  When I was a kid, we rarely missed a shuttle launch that was televised.  I was even very lucky when once it did a low level fly over of the suburb of Montreal I lived in (back in the 80's).  During my first trip to visit Claire in Jacksonville (the same visit where yesterday's bird came from) there happened to be a launch while I was down there, we were in St. Augustine that day and we decided on the spur of the moment to drive down to Cape Canaveral to make it to the launch.  What an AMAZING experience, this was as close as we could get to the launch site but it was still wayyyy cool!

Recharging the Creative Batteries

My usual Tuesday night routine for the last almost 3 years has been go from work, to visiting with my parents, to my Weight Watchers meeting, to Taekwon-Do and even sometimes staying for Cardio TaeBox afterwards.  Tonight I decided it was time to change that and I'm so glad, and excited that I did!

For some time now I've known that there's a little stitching group in Ottawa, one that Lynn goes to and I decided why not change my routine and go?  So go I did... well first I got in a visit to the gym before stitching began (gotta get my workout in).  Lynn was back form a trip to visit family, Lori was there who I met about a year ago now, so were many other ladies I have met over the years at various stitching retreats, classes, events and get togehters.

I didn't really get that much stitching done tonight.  When I got home, for the first time in ages I felt really excited and re-energized over my stitching that the first thing I did was pull my stitching back out!  Wow it just felt so good and so right!

Now to share a few non-stitching related things with you...

I noticed this on my odometer when I got home!  Guess what my favourite number is?  You've got it 27!

Also yesterday while waiting for my turn at an intersection to turn, the winter sky was just so gorgeous!  I was glad I had enough time to pull out my camera and snap a quick picture.

Finally another old PhotoHunt, this one is from November 21, 2010 and the theme is "birds"

I photographed this fellow a few years ago at the Jacksonville Zoo.  I just loved his "headdress"!

Monday, January 10, 2011

The ABC's of Me

I saw this on Lisa's blog, and I thought it would make a good blog entry for me too!

A - Age: 34, I often get mistaken for being in my mid 20's
B - Bed size: Queen
C - Chore you hate: cleaning the house, takes away from my stitching time!
D - Dog's name: I am not a dog person at all.  I have two cats, Cuddles and Hunter!  Long rule cats!

E - Essential start of the day item: a shower, it wakes me up in the morning.
F - Favorite color: red
G - Gold or Silver: silver
H - Height: 5'2"

I - Instruments you play: an iPod
J - Job: Library and Information Technician
K - Kids: two cats
L - Living arrangements: house in the country with DBF and two cats, lots of dustbunnies too!
M - Music you love: Rock!  Favourite picks : Nickleback, Foo Fighters, and Billy Talent
N - Nicknames: Dani
O - Overnight hospital stay at hospital: Breast Reduction
P - Pet Peeve: People who let their kids push the cart when the kid can't even see over the bar of the shopping cart
Q - Quote from a movie: Hmmm nothing is hitting me right now...
R - Right handed or left: Right

S - Siblings: Big sister, baby brother
T - Time you wake up: 6:05 am

U - Underwear: yeah I wear it
V - Vegetable you dislike: brussle sprouts
W - Workout Style: Taekwon-Do classes 3x a week, the gym 2x a week (cardio & weights), running
X - X-rays you've had: dental, right ankle, right foot, brain (cat scan), lungs
Y - Yummy food you make: Kick ass lasagna
Z - The best place to visit: Friends!!!!
For your viewing pleasure here's a Photo Hunt from November 14, 2010 the theme is : Music
I can't play an instrument but I sure can enjoy a good concert.  This is the base player from Chris Cornell's band.  He was uber-cool!  Base players are always cool!!

Sunday, January 09, 2011

This Week's Stitchy Porgress & Photo Hunt

Once again I think I've spent more time on my laptop than I have stitching.  I've spent a lot of time today visiting blogs, and getting caught up.  You see its a personal policy of mine that every comment I receive stays in my inbox until I've had a chance to visit you back.  I've been doing a lot of that today between putting in stitches.

I did start and finish yet another snowflake today... and I did the finishing too!  I'm getting quite a little collection of these. I changed up the beading on the edge of this one.

Snowflake Cross Stitch Gold
Stitched on 28ct Ivory Jubilee
Stitched with DMC floss

When I haven't been working on those adorable snowflakes I've either been working on my two main WIPs:

Art Deco Spirits - Water panel, seas and seas of white again!

The Accolade - I'm almost at the top right hand corner on page 1!

Here's this week's PhotoHunt, and it was a free week so we could pick any photo we wanted to!

I took this picture back in December when we were having some freezing rain, we were out and about and Todd had to get some gas for the truck.  The icicles dripping off of this car wash sign caught my eye.

January TUSAL

So I decided, late in the game to join the TUSAL (Totally Useless Stitch A Long) which is be running off of Daffycat's Blog.  So you pretty much collect your stitching orts (those are the little bits of thread you cut off when you're done) in a jar ... pretty or not.  Then on or as close to the new moon as possible you photograph your jar and share it on your blog.  I was feeling so left out I just had to join in!

January TUSAL progress

Today before I picked up my actual stitching I did the finishing on my last little snowflake.  I did the same finish as the last one.

I have sat down to stitch today, but I don't seem to be able to "settle" into my stitching.  I seem to be flitting from reading blogs and the weight watchers message boards, to stitching, to playing Bejeweled Blitz, to stitching, and back to blogs again.  For some reason this has been going on for awhile now, hopefully tomorrow I'll "buckle down".

The PhotoHunt for January 1st was "Fuzzy"

I came across this fuzzy bulrush while out for a walk this past fall

Thursday, January 06, 2011

Dude... somethign's amiss at the Circle K

Don't worry this isn't a re-visit of Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure... but somethings wrong with this picture.  Sigh, I took a quick look at this when I realized the circle wasn't going to meet and couldn't easily spot where I went wrong.  So now I need to sit down and compare this to the chart stitch-by-stitch.

I was going to blog late last night, but Blogger wasn't co-operating with me.  I started and finished another adorable little snowflake last night.  I had been hoping to have a more productive evening, stitching wise but I spent wayyyy too much time online.

Cross Stitch Gold Snowflake
Stitched on : 28ct Opalescent Lugana
Stitched with : DMC cotton

Here's the PhotoHunt from December 25th -- "Circle"

I thought this picture was appropriate since this should of been done on Christmas Day, its a round Christmas ornament that I saw decorating a tree in someones yard just before Christmas when I went to a friends for a little "Holiday Cheer".