Monday, August 3, 2020

Birthday Weekend

Katy and Steve came home this weekend for my birthday.  Ed also took a day off so he could have dinner with us.  One of the things we did was go to Alpha, MI population 136.  We went for the beer at the Alpha Brewery.  We brough snacks since its just beer.  The beer is pretty good.  We had two brews:  Naughty School Girl and Brule River Red.  I'm not big into these small breweries.  I like Miller Lite.  After a couple of sips, heavier beer to me just gets ucky.   I did like the Naughty School Girl, not too heavy.  Ed was telling us that when he was in college and went to Beer Fest in Marquette, there was a booth that sold food on a string.  You wore it around your neck and they you had food to nibble on while drinking beer.  Being the smart aleck I am, I made some for us.  
Katy with her pretzel necklace.  Seating was outdoors.  Once we got to our table we took off our masks.  


Katy brought the most glorious gourmet cupcakes from GiGi's.  We had  Chocolate Sea Salt Caramel (my favorite), Lime, Dreamsicle, Cookie Dough and Chocolate 

Bob got me  a new yard art piece.  Its a dragonfly that is made out of pipe wrench and other scrap metal.  I love this stuff.  I have a couple of pieces I have blogged about in the past.  It is just so cool 
Its nice and rusty too!

Ed got me flowers, the colors were so pretty.  It was a wonderful birthday!
I got my latest piece of VMSS linen:  Heritage Sampler.  I think this one may be my favorite yet.  The picture doesn't do it justice.  It is a little darker.  I really do like darker linen. 
Started working on Carriage House Samplings Truth & Wisdom.  Its just a small piece.  I saw it again when I was on her website looking for A Free and Independent Mind.  It sparked me up.  
The Stitching Bee had a frame sale.  I called and had her put two aside for me and Katy was able to pick it up.  I paid for it ahead of time but, needed to spend at least $10 to put it on a credit card.  So I ordered a few more things.  Oh boy!
I'm going to Briwax this red one to tone it down.  The brown one is a nice size and I'm sure I will put it to good use. 
Black Bird Designs We Live in Hope.  This is a really lovely sampler.  Not sure if I will do the whole think or parts.  There are two samplers:  the large one on the front cover and just the sailing ship.  I may just do that.  Stay tuned.
I took the day off because I knew the kids wouldn't leave till this morning.  I had to go to a meeting at my new employers.  It was a just get to know everyone, a brief informational, some team building etc.  I'm so tired of the team building which generally is a load of crap if you ask me.  I have  yet another questionaire to fill out.  I've done three in the last couple of months  UGH!

Rest of the week is going to be busy since I was off today. Did get a little stitching done this afternoon after a power nap. 

Hope you had a wonderful weekend!  Have a great week!  Stay safe, healthy and wear your mask
Monica

Sunday, July 26, 2020

General Stuff

Work has been a roller coaster ride this last week.  Lots of turmoil as to be expected with everyone.  It's going to be bumpy to start with but, if the management of  company is good, ultimately I think it will be fine.  Will just have to wait and see.  Like I said, retirement is on the horizon.  I have mixed emotions about that too.  

I got my second set of 100/3 Ver au Soie.  The colors are so beautiful.  I need to find something I can try it out on.  I do have HATS Sarah Spencer and got these silks for.  Maybe that should be my next project.  Currently, I'm using a photobox to store them in.  I will have to figure out how to ultimately store them.  Next time I'm at Joann Fabrics, I will have to check out storage boxes.  
Some pictures of the latest blooms in the garden.  The first is an closed Balloon Flower (Platycodons).  They look like balloons before they open. 
The flower after it opens.  I had a plant that was a lovely shade of blue, until Henry trampled over it one too many times.  These are a light lavender.  Side note, I love blue flowers!  Delphinums are my favorite and I had beautiful ones.  They died out.  
I have four different types of Coral Bells or Heurechera.  These are flowers from the latest ones I planted.  The leaves are large and a burgundy and green.  I planted them in an area that I've had a hard time growing things.  I think gardening is often a lot of trial and error.  The flowers are small but, fairylike. 
I was watching The Saltbox Stitcher last weekend and she showed a project she may be starting on.  It really spoke to me so I tracked it down on Carriage House Samplings.  That is one stern looking woman!
The verse:  No glory I covet
                  No Riches I want
                  Ambition and
                  Beauty are
                  Nothing to me.
                 The one thing I
                 beg of good
                 heaven to grant
                 Is a mind
                 independent and
                 free

I really like how some of the alphabet goes around the edge of the piece. 
I finished the top edge of the satin stitch border of Sarah Braizear.  I believe I have come to the conclusion, I hate satin stitches.  I thought about not doing them and just filling in with a regular cross stitch but, I will power through. 
Taking a break from it and working on some BBD from the Sewing Club book.  It will be the stitching group's Christmas present this year. 

It has been a very hot and humid this weekend.  The populartion of the county is about 25,000.  We
have been having 2-3 new cases daily.  Fortunately, there is better compliance with masks.  Thank you Governor Whitmer. 

Stay safe and healthy and keep stitching. 
Monica

Sunday, July 19, 2020

Never Enough Vacation

Back to work tomorrow.  I really could use another week off.  Katy was home and that was great!  We got a lot done.  There weren't enough hours a day to get everything I was hoping to get done.   Bob laughed at my list with Stitch, stitch, stitch, stitch and stitch.  I think I only got stitch done.  

I finished Adam & Eve Revisited by Kathy Barrick.  I love how quirky this is.  I didn't use black for the background and used Weeks Pea Coat instead.  I wasn't sure I would have enough.  Katy proclaimed it playing Thread Chicken.  I won with quite a bit of floss to spare.  Not sure if I'm going to frame it or finish it as a pinkeep or something.   
I was lying in bed one morning just thinking about a BBD design I had stitched several years ago.  It may have been the first one I stitched, Rites of Spring.  I never really wanted to frame it.  I thought, "I wonder if I could make a drum out of it?  Found it while we were cleaning the basement and getting rid of a lot of junk.  I figured it would work so I went for it.  I'm pretty pleased with how it turned out.  Maybe a little too much in the dome but, I think it still looks great.  Generally used Vonna Pfeiffer's tutorial.  The fabric on the ends and the pompom needed some tuning up.  The background on the fabric was too white and didn't really go.  I coffee dyed it and Katy was amazed how much better it looked with the piece.  I lightly dyed the pompom with brown Rit dye.  If you don't concentrate the dye too much, it turns a lovely shade of pink like Weeks Sanguine or if a little longer, Red Pear.  I think that was the pink in the flowers. 


Its a keeper. 

Starting August 1, I'm going to have a new employer.  The hospital I work for decided it would be better to enter a contract with a Rehab company and move us off the campus to better fit into the hospital's strategic plan.  We had a meeting on Thursday.  Typical corporate procedure:  we got fired by the hospital and then received an offer and packet from the Rehab company.  Fortunately, I really only plan on working a few more years.  What a way to end a career.  Made me just want to cry.  Hopefully all will go well. 

Hope you are all well and staying healthy. 
Keep on Stitching
Monica

Sunday, July 12, 2020

Vacation, Just Not the Cruise

I'm so excited, I'm on vacation this week!!  Not going anywhere.  Was suppose to be the first week of my cruise with Jean Farrish.  It was such a long process, starting February 2019 with the initial booking.  Then all the land excursions planned.  We got all but the non refundable deposit.  Today, I would have boarded the plane at O'Hare.  It's a little sad but, okay.  

I finished the 2020 Prairie Schooler Santa this week. Tomorrow, I will fully finish it.  This really is a super cute Santa with the rabbits.  I did enjoy working with the Sulky thread.  I had no problems with it and the coverage was great on the 32 count.  I would use it again.  I think Prairie schooler works well because there isn't the depth of thread colors for extensive shading.  There are some Hands on Designs patterns that call for the Sulky:  Cranberry Christmas for one.  On 123 Stitch the thread pack is $10.  
I needed some thread to finish Sarah Braizear and Scarlet House Bringing Home the Tree that I  wasn't able to get it from the Stitching Bee.  Since I was already paying for shipping, I added a few other threads and some Lugana.  I have a few projects in the queue that call for Lugana.  I'm sure there will be more.  Its a great choice for stitching over one  I really liked the color of the Wheat.

Some of the additional threads I ordered are ones I seem to use a lot

Katy is home for most of the week.  We haven't seen her since the end of January.  Its great to have her home.  

Because of the uptick in Covid 19 in the area, there were a lot more people wearing masks as compared to last weekend.  Maybe because the tourists were there the day before or gone.  I was happy to see that.  I hope it keeps up.  

That about wraps it up.  The weather has been pretty good, temperature is more seasonal.  We've been in the 90's.  I do have to go into work for a mandatory meeting on Thursday.  I'm afraid we are headed for some big changes.  I'll keep you posted.  

Hope you have a good week.  Stay healthy
Keep Stitching 
Monica

Sunday, July 5, 2020

I'm Gonna Rant

I'm gonna rant.  If you don't want to read just look at the pictures.  
The population of the county I live in is around 25,500.  We have had three new Covid 19 cases in the last week.  We are up to 9.  Doesn't seem like much, I agree.  I was having lunch with Arttie on Friday, outside seating.  The traffic through downtown was unbelievable:  campers, campers with another truck following them with pontoon boats, side by sides, motorcycles, kayaks, bicycles.  Cars from all over country:  New York, Arizona, Florida.  People would say its great for the local economy but, at what cost.  The grocery store was insane.  People wandering around with empty carts, people just standing around blocking the aisles and about 10% wearing masks!   Our local hospital has 4 ventilators, limited ICU space and the respiratory unit is 5 beds.  I'm afraid things are going to blow.  

Getting my hair done this week.  Going to a new salon since  my hairdresser for 22 years has not called me to schedule an appointment.  The last time she cancelled, she assured me I was on the list.  Obviously, not on the list.  I'm sure she fired me for posting on FB the importance of masks in helping to curb the virus.  She does not feel the same and has complained about that and not being able to open sooner.  She was still cutting hair many weeks before she could officially open.  Okay now I'm done ranting.  

I was talking to my sister about last weekend and these prayer towers.  She said they look like prison towers.  THEN IT CLICKED!  I bet they were.  I remembered reading that the area had been used to imprison German prisoners of war.  They probably were guard towers.  
 Moving right along and Adam & Eve Revisited by Kathy Barrick  It it a really fun little stitch.  Doing it with the called for DMC on 40 ct Newcastle.  I am taking a little break.  
My friend Micky is having a hysterectomy because of endometrial cancer and I'm going to send her a care package with candy, puzzle books and this.  She has a four year old grand daughter who spends a lot of time with her.  I'm hoping it will brighten her day.  
I am using  Sulky Threads that my brother in law sent me.  He works for Sulky in the US.  It was awesome.  This is what he sent me:   Sulky Thread
This is a mystery 32 count linen and the coverage is fantastic with one thread.  


This how far I have gotten today.  Stitching this morning while watching the talking heads.  Was going to get more done this afternoon but, I fell asleep.  We were up late because of the neighbors setting off fireworks.  
Buster is healing nicely from his dental procedures.  I have gradually reintroduced his hard food and it doesn't seem to be bothering him. I don't think he's ready for Greenies.  The Vet did give  me some Oravet treats that are suppose to help with  the teeth.           
                                   
Henry on Friday night while the neighborhood was shooting off fireworks.  I have given him 150 mg of Trazadone to take the edge off. He still paced around a bit but, much less anxiety than without it.  He has a thundershirt but, it isn't enough. 


Hope you had a good 4th of July.  Ours was fine and I got a lot done.  Some of which I will show at a later post. 

Have a great week.  Stay healthy and wear a mask. 
Keep on Stitching
Monica




Sunday, June 28, 2020

College Girls Weekend 2020

If you follow my blog, every summer my girl friends from college and I try to get together for a weekend.  We usually go to Mary Beth's family cabin but, it was spoken for the weekend that all worked for us.  We found someplace different to go to.  We tried to do a VRBO but, by the time you can get everyone on the same page, the rentals get snapped up.  I remembered a convention center in Green Lake, WI: Green Lake Convention Center.  Arttie and I had gone to a stitching retreat there several years ago with the Garden of Stitches in Appleton.  Jan and I checked into it and we found a cabin that met our needs: Albert IV.  It worked pretty well.  We did need to bring our own linens, initially it would have been provided but, because of Covid 19, we had to bring sheet and towels.  Everything else was there.  

We took a ride around the grounds.  The deep roads are pretty rustic and the area is woodsy.  It really is a lovely area.  We were driving by and saw this guy hunting from a tree perch.  Not sure what kind of hawk it is.  
There are five of these prayer towers on the grounds.  We didn't get out to check them out.  I think they are kind of creepy.  One was kind of boarded up.  During our drive, we went past three of them. 
The view from the front window.  
The living room.  We usually spend the weekend, crafting, eating, drinking a little wine and shopping.  This weekend shopping wasn't much in the picture.  Only a few shops were open and we were busy until 430, so bagged it.  

We scrap book the pictures from the previous year.  We do other projects.  Jan saw this one and we made little books using Post It pads.  We used card stock type scrap booking paper and jazzed them up.  Or as I like to refer to it as "festooning them".  We stamped and paper artted them up.  
On the way, I stopped in Green Bay at the Stitching Bee.  First time there since the beginning of March before everything was shut down.  I kind of figured all hell was going to break loose when I starting hearing all the news coming out of China in the early weeks.  Picked up BBD, Come into My Garden.  Out of all the patterns I've gotten, besides the Sewing Club, I think this one is my favorite.

I thought this Annie Beeze was really cute.  I may change some of the colors, don't know yet. 
I had Kendra order this La-D-Da for me.  I just love this one.  Got the floss and picked up some fabric.  40 count Goldfinch.  Don't remember what brand. 
She also had the Prairie Schooler Santa for me. 
I finished my Margorie Massey piece, and fully finished it.  The inside.  I found my Stocklette scissor by Klemcott (hooray for me!)
I used the red house on the scissor fob and stuffed it with walnut shells and batting.  Used wool on the inside of the needle book and attached a loop and ring to hook the scissor to  I really like the way it turned out. 

Got my latest fabric from Victorian Motto Sampler Shoppe.  It's called Harvest and is a light pinky gold.  Can't tell by the picture.  I put it next to some white paper. 
Some flowers in my garden.  They're blue.  I have a thing about blue flowers.  Not sure what they are.  I may have them written down somewhere but that would mean I have  to get out of my chair. 
The satin stitching on Sarah Braizear.  I'm afraid I'm going to run out of the thread before I'm done and GAST is still difficult to get.  I'm in no hurry.  I'll probably just order from 123 Stitch. 
This came in the mail from Country Sampler in Spring Green.  It is latest in the ABC School Girls Club.  It's Shakespeare's Peddler Dolly Frank's Five Lion Sampler.  The colors are subdue and right up my alley.  
I found this one on a De-stashing FB page.  Perseverance Sampler from Chessie and Me.  I think there maybe a lot of satin stitches.  I'm not going to do them.  Well at least not all of them. 
Finally, I started Adam and Eve Revisited by Kathy Barrick.  I have a fondness for Adam and Eve's and this one fits the bill. I got the serpent done but, it doesn't look like much yet.  

This is a long one.  Going to wrap it up.  Hope you had a wonderful and healthy weekend. 
Keep on Stitching
Monica