Thursday, December 31, 2009

Happy New Year

There are only a few hours left of 2009 here in New Zealand, so I thought I would pop in and wish everyone all the best for 2010. I hope whatever you are doing that you enjoy it! DH and I went out for an Indian meal, and that is the height of our New Year celebrations.

Today I noticed a parcel sitting at our front door. I didn't want to get excited as I thought it might be for DH. But I picked it up and saw it was for me (yay!!) from Kathy. Thank you so much Kathy!

Kathy included a Canadian oven glove, Christmas pencils and erasers, some Christmas fabric and a beautiful zippered pouch which she made herself.



How funny that I was just recently thinking that once we move house I need to gather together all my scissors, needles, needleminder etc in one place so I can find them more easily - and now I have a zippered bag to do just that!

Of course, while I loved everything Kathy sent the most lovely thing was the thought behind it. Thanks Kathy, for ending my year on a high! :-)

This year has been full of highs - getting married in February, catching up with relatives at the wedding (some from overseas), my niece being born in April, lots of awesome day trips to beautiful places nearby, a break in relaxing Fiji, making friends through blogging and Flickr, catching up with old friends via Facebook, attending Ronnie's cousins wedding in October, catching up with our estranged niece and nephews at the wedding, adopting Petal (our disfigured, but beautiful cat), catching up with friends from Northern Ireland while they were out in May, seeing shows - Ed Byrne (comedian) and the Rhythms of Ireland, joining the gym and finding out I really enjoy it, buying the house we are moving to in two weeks time... and finishing my Long Dog Mystery Sampler (of course!). LOL. Sometimes it is easy to forget the good stuff until you start listing it!

Anyway, enough babbling. This is what I am starting tonight as my new project for 2010 (it's a Moira Blackburn sampler). If it takes as long as Long Dog, you can expect to see a happy dance in 2013!



Before I finish up, I thought I would let you all know that I really enjoyed seeing 'New Moon' at the movies last night. The same can't be said for Ronnie. After about half an hour or so he adopted his bored pose, looked at his watch and huffed and puffed a lot. My sister and I were quite excitable, have both moved to Team Jacob and are already talking about going to see Eclipse when it reaches New Zealand.

Thanks for all your comments recently, and Happy New Year 2010!

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Last finish for 2009

I imagine this is my last finish for the year, it is 'His Heart Belongs to Me' by Carriage House Samplings. (Ballymena is my DH's hometown in Northern Ireland).



I'm off to the movies tonight to see New Moon. My DH suggested we go. He tells me he quite enjoyed Twilight (cue surprised look). From memory he was surfing the net at the time I was watching it, and isn't it really for teenage girls (or your inner teenage girl)??? Still, I won't let on. lol

Hope you're all still enjoying the holidays!

Monday, December 28, 2009

It's a mystery no more!

Hooray, I finally finished my Long Dog Mystery Sampler. It was nearly three years in the making!! I started on 20 January 2007, and finished it nearing midnight on 27 December 2009. Spurred on in determination by cheeky comments from my DH about when it might eventually get finished!



I hope everyone had a lovely Christmas. Ours started off a little differently than other years with a trip to Te Papa to see the 'A Day in Pompeii' exhibition. I highly recommend it if you live locally (or are visiting Wellington between now and April). We mostly had the exhibition to ourselves (which was the plan by going on Christmas Day), so it was great to look around at our leisure.

Then it was lunch and dinner at my sister's house. Phoebe got lots of lovely pressies and stayed up late (she obviously didn't want to miss the party!). Here's my favourite photo from Christmas Day of Phoebe getting a Christmas kiss from Grandma(my Mum).



Ronnie is back to work tomorrow for a couple of days before New Year, but I don't go back until next Tuesday. I plan on doing some more stitching, hitting the gym, watching some movies and packing some more boxes in preparation for the house move on the 15th.

Hope you are all enjoying the holidays!

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Merry Christmas

I thought I would do another post before Christmas, so I can wish all my friends and readers a very Merry Christmas. I hope you all have a wonderful day!

I have been busy stitching. I have finished Just Nan's Christmas Wishes. I'm going to make this into a small cushion for next Christmas.



I have also been busy getting a WIP closer to being finished. Not long to go for my Long Dog Mystery Sampler. I know it would not be to everybody's taste, but I love all the colours in it. I started it on 20 January 2007, and it WILL be finished by 20 January 2010. It will, it will... lol





I forgot to share some nice mail I have received in recent weeks. I won the marking pins on MaryKathryn's Facebook page, and the threads are a gift from Judy. Thank you so much ladies!



It is already Christmas Eve here. My DH shut up shop yesterday, so today we took a long drive to Cape Palliser. It is one of our favourite destinations. The views are pretty...



... and the wildlife is cute and laid-back!



More photos in my Flickr album for anyone who is interested.

I will finish up this post with a picture of my niece, who is having her first Christmas tomorrow :-) She'll be in bed by the time we have the main event, but we're going to see her earlier in the day. I can't wait!



Have a wonderful Christmas everyone!

Monday, December 07, 2009

Little while, no blog...

Paula left a comment noting that I'd been rather quiet lately. Hmmm, it has been over a month since I posted to my blog so it is about time I did an update :-)

The only stitching finish I have to report is Just Nan's Blitzen Glistens, which I made into an ornament for my niece Phoebe's first Christmas. I chickened out of doing a beaded edging, but found a little hanger in my stash for it.



I thought I would share this Christmas card from my sister too (using Phoebe's photo). I thought it was very cute, and a neat idea.



In other news I joined the gym (and am really enjoying it) and we are no longer searching for a section to build on, because we found a house we love and are moving in on 15 January. We managed to sell our house within 4 days of it being on the market, and it was all tied up within 8 days. I think it was just meant to be!

That's all for now, off to find something to stitch on!

Thursday, November 05, 2009

Back from Fiji

We had a wonderful time on our short break to Fiji. We didn't do a great deal, we just tried to relax as much as possible.

We did however go on a jungle cruise, a champagne sunset cruise on a 35ft catamaran, sea kayaking, paddle boating, a shopping trip into Nadi, lots of walking along the beach and around the resort, watching the evening entertainment and we had a trip to the Garden of the Sleeping Giant (beautiful).

Ronnie (my DH) has had his own business for two years, and in that time he has been reluctant to take a day off, let alone go on holiday. However, much to my wandering feet's pleasure he is already talking about future travel. I think Fiji has reignited his wandering feet too! Thank you Fiji!!



And what better way to end a holiday? I came home and there was some new stash waiting for me!! (I know, I know... I am supposed to be destashing!)



Happy stitching!

Monday, October 19, 2009

I am being a good girl...

Instead of a new start, I decided to dip into the UFO/WIP pile and have made some small progress on the Long Dog mystery sampler which I started in 2007.



There really aren't too many bands to go, so I'm hoping it will encourage me to just get on with finishing it!

My DH and I are currently looking for a section to build a house on, so I have been destashing and thinking about getting old projects finished up. When we moved house in March, there were many, many boxes labelled 'craft room'. I'd like to decrease that considerably for when we do find that elusive section!

Have a great week!

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Progress halted

A big thank you to Gayle for coming to the rescue with my thread request. Progress has come to a halt now as I'm all out of thread.

If anyone else has this chart in their stash waiting to be stitched, I think it well underestimates the amount of thread needed. It was supposed to take 12 yards on 32 count, but I have already been through 20 yards. Make sure you have plenty of extra thread before you start, especially if your thread is not easy to lay your hands on.



Happy stitching!

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Does anyone have...

...leftovers/half/a whole skein of Antique Red Victorian Motto Sampler Shoppe thread they would like to swap for some threads/charts?

My niece is SIX months old today. Where did that time go? She also went for her first swimming lesson...



I am not sure that the novelty of posting cute photos of her will ever wear off, so readers and friends... you may have to bear with me :-)

Although I will have some travel photos to share soon. DH and I are off to Fiji in a few weeks. I can't wait to get away from all this wet and windy October weather.

Happy stitching!

Monday, October 12, 2009

New stash to counteract the destashing

I am doing a lot of destashing at the moment, but I couldn't resist Hootzi Humbug by Just Nan. I have long admired Just Nan's pretty pins... and I can say I am definitely not disappointed with my first!



There is not really a lot of progress on Live Simply, so I'll save the update photo for when there is something more substantial to show.

Thanks for those who shared their opinions on my last post about the OOP chart, they were much appreciated.

I see I have some new followers and commenters, I hope to pay a return visit to you all soon.

Hope your week is off to a great start!

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Opinions please

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What do you think is a fair price to pay for an out of print limited edition cross stitch chart?

What someone originally paid for it? Double? More? Put it on Ebay/Trade Me and let the buyers determine the price?


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So this is not a completely boring, photo-less, stitching-less post I've added another photo of Phoebe for baby photo lovers. Definitely my favourite photo I have taken of her so far.



I am distracted from my stitching at the moment (due to good things), but hope to get back into the swing of stitchy things soon!

Although I am having a little lull AND a serious destash at the moment, I did order something today - how cute is Hootzi Humbug from Just Nan?. I figured that even I, the non-finishy stitcher, could probably make a humbug. Hope I'm not wrong... 'cos I signed up for next year's four releases as well!

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Stickability

I am so loving stitching this, as you can probably tell by the progress!



We love getting out and about, and most Sundays we usually take a day trip somewhere. Last Sunday we drove out to Castlepoint, which is a very remote township about two hours north of where I live. It was a gorgeous spring day, and the walk up to the lighthouse and beyond rewarded us with these amazing views!

On the way back we stopped at our favourite Wairarapa haunt 'The Big Apple' a fruit and vege stall. Not for fruit and vegies though, for real fruit ice cream. YUM!!!

As my beloved Great Aunt says 'it's not a bad life, is it?' :-)



Tuesday, September 08, 2009

A new start

I am all over the show with my stitching at the moment, so a new start it is!

This is Live Simply by Papillon Creations. I think I might stick with this one a while. I am using Victorian Motto Sampler Shoppe thread in Antique Red, which I received in an awesome exchange from Nela a year or so ago. It is such a gorgeous colour.



Thanks for your nice comments on my last post, on my stitching and Phoebe.

My DH was high-fiving Phoebe on Sunday, and it looked several times like she was high-fiving him back. It turns out my sister has been trying to teach her to do this! It may well be sinking in.

Hope your week is going well!

Saturday, September 05, 2009

Stitchie Witchie and an update

I recently saw Cathey's Stitchie Witchie finish, and fell in love. It has been a while since I stitched so enthusiastically, but I just loved the colours and cuteness of it!



I have also been working on Curly-Q Ewe now and then. I've had this kit for a while so it is about time I did something with it!



Next up is Whale House by Bent Creek. I stitched it a year or two ago, but decided to make it into a little cushion for my smalls basket last week... I think it turned out cute!



I also got my sewing machine out recently for a play. I haven't quite got Souvenir de Paris finished, the opening is only pinned shut and the charm (which I mentioned in an earlier post) needs to be attached. I winged the construction - it turned out OK-ish but I need to work on those corners (they're not very pointy).



I also finished Popcorn the bear into a little door knob hanger. Not that I will hang it on a door knob... with four cats around I don't think it would last long. LOL :-)



I'll finish off with another photo of my niece in her Jolly Jumper, just because she is so cute and I love her.



Hope you are having a wonderful weekend!

Sunday, August 09, 2009

As promised...

in my last post, here is a photo of my niece Phoebe in the hat that I knitted for her.

Friday, August 07, 2009

Feeling Springy!!

I have the day off work today, and it is a beautiful Spring day. Not a cloud in sight, and warm out in the sun.

So I thought I would update my blog since it has been a while. I haven't stitched on Mary Wigham at all in the last month or so. But I have recently finished this little Christmas design from JBW Designs -



And I currently have Woodland Samplings by Little House Needleworks on the go.



I also knitted my niece a little hat. Hopefully my sister will take a photo of her in it so I can share it here at some stage. Phoebe is now smiling and very alert. I even had her laughing last night making silly noises at her... it's just so cute when babies laugh! Here is a photo my sister took of her the other day...



Although I haven't blogged or commented much lately, I am still keeping up with your blogs. I lost my stitching mojo for a bit, but it wasn't long before I found it again... reading blogs is good for that!

Hope you all have a great weekend!

Thursday, July 09, 2009

Wiggy progress

I have been working away on Mary Wigham, and have some progress to share. After taking this photo I have come to the conclusion I need a prettier pair of scissors to include in future photos - Quaker medallions and Cheetah print just do not go together! :-)



In answer to Bronny's question - I'm stitching over two on 32 count. I am not game enough to stitch such a large project over one :-)

I particpated in the Christmas in July exchange, and here is what I received from Joke. A lovely ornament, some Christmas fabric and some metallic thread. Thank you Joke!



My partner (Ina - no blog) has also received her parcel. Here is what I sent her. The Koala ornament was from Jill Oxton's Cross Stitch & Beading magazine.



Yay, it's nearly Friday again!

Saturday, June 27, 2009

Horrid photo, but...

Mary Wigham is officially underway...

Monday, June 22, 2009

Thank you Yuko

I recently won a giveaway from Yuko. It arrived today and it is absolutely beautiful! Thank you again Yuko!



Here is a picture of the back and sides, just as pretty as the stitching itself. I feel very lucky!



I haven't started stitching Mary Wigham yet, but I have decided on my colours. I was going to go with the recommended colours, but then decided maybe they were not to my liking afterall. The colours I have chosen are taken from another Quaker design (is that naughty? lol), and are a little more muted than they appear in the photo. The fabric is 32 count Antique Ivory Belfast. I have an exchange to get out before I get started on Mary Wigham.



Thanks for your comments on my organised threads. Of course, they aren't always that organised - I had a tidy up recently. I went out and bought two further thread boxes so I could get my DMC threads organised. I soon discovered organised threads don't actually take up much room at all, and they fitted into the three boxes I already had!

A funny story for cat lovers. We found a black and white cat on our spare bed last week. I mentioned it to my Mum who works at Animal Rescue, it turns out they had an escapee and somehow it found its way to my house! Perhaps Petal left instructions with the other cats when she left? lol Needless to say he has been returned to Animal Rescue (sadly, my house is full!). Hopefully he'll find a loving home soon.

I thought I would finish off with a photo of my niece which I took on Friday. I am very smitten with her, and it really melts my heart when she gets a smile on her face.



Have a lovely week!

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Mary Wigham

Yay, my fabric for Mary Wigham arrived today. I am looking forward to getting started on it.



I am pleased with my new Kelmscott needle minder, I think my DH will be too. No more whines of 'Ronnie, I've lost my needle'.

Zeb - congrats you are the winner of the Comfort House freebie chart. If you email me your snail mail address I will get it into the post for you asap. And in answer to your question, I got Mrs Darcy directly from Tanya at The Sampler Girl.

I am away to pull the threads for Mary Wigham, I hope to be back soon with my first progress pic.

Have a wonderful week.

Friday, June 05, 2009

Comfort House

As mentioned in my last post, I had another small design in the pipeline.

When I ordered Mrs Darcy I was sent this sweet freebie chart. It is called Comfort House by The Sampler Girl. It was a quick, fun stitch.



If anyone is interested in this chart, please leave a comment on this post - and if there is more than one person interested I will pick a name at random. Just the usual giveaway spiel :-)

I have ordered my fabric for Mary Wigham (32 count Belfast in Antique Ivory) from the Silver Needle. I was a litle ticked off with a short, unhelpful response to my query from a Kiwi ONS that I decided I'd shop internationally.

It was a blessing in disguise really, as something else fell into my cart while I was ordering the fabric (the Kelmscott Pink Lady needleminder which I have had my eye on for ages). I am sure you all know how that goes!

I got to cuddle with my niece this afternoon. She was the most alert I have seen her yet. She was lying on her playmat kicking her legs and making the cutest noises. She is 7 weeks old already... time flies!

Have a great weekend!

Thursday, June 04, 2009

Kiwi sampler lovers...

I found a website we should keep an eye on
New Zealand Sampler. I would love to see this website grow!

It's still cold here, but one nice thing about this time of year is the beautiful cloudless evenings where the hills turn a nice pinky-purple colour just before the light disappears for the day. Here's a pic of the Tararua mountain range I took from our dining room window this evening.



I will probably be back tomorrow with a stitching update. I have another little design just about finished.

Thank you for your fabric advice for Mary Wigham. I am chomping at the bit to get started! I will let you know what fabric I choose, but I think I will probably go with the Belfast - since I have used it before and it's the easiest to source.

Yay, one more day until the weekend. Hang in there folks (assuming that you live for the weekends, like I do... lol).

Wednesday, June 03, 2009

If you haven't seen this beautiful sampler

appearing all over blogland I'd be very surprised.

My question is - have you ever stitched on the recommended fabric - Permin Lambswool? Is it a nice fabric to use?

After my flopsy linen experience the other day, I want to be sure if I start this huge sampler that I at least am not going to get annoyed at the fabric.



Thanks in advance for your help!

And seriously, if you really haven't seen this sampler anywhere in blogland yet you can check it out over here at Needleprint.

Monday, June 01, 2009

Itty bitty...

Here is Mrs Darcy stitched up. I know how I want to finish her (a tuck pillow idea), but I need to find some instructions online and get my sewing machine out!



And here is Frost on the Pumpkins by Just Nan. I didn't like the flopsy linen - it made the stitches different sizes and they didn't lie nicely at all. I need to fix those eyes before I iron it and attach the beads. What I did love about this design was the amazing colours (the photo doesn't do them justice) they are really vibrant.



We had snow here yesterday. That happens only very, very occasionally. Even Wellington (near the sea) had a snow flurry - the first in 14 years.

We decided to heck with the horrible weather and went to the zoo (with the nephew and my sister). While we were there we had sunshine, rain, hail and even some of that snow Wellington hadn't seen in 14 years. The animals still come out in bad weather, so we saw most of them. :-) At one stage we huddled near some kangaroos under a tree while we all avoided the hail. It was a fun and memorable day!



Today is a public holiday, so I am going to do some more stitching and tidy up my basket of threads. I bought some new bobbin boxes so need to get them all back into order to make them easy to find. That should be fun! lol

Have a great week!

P.S. Hi Tanya - yes, I am 100% Kiwi. My Dad was born in England though, so I have a British passport too.