Monday, 30 June 2008

I Almost Still Do

I have nearly done my initials so I am quite pleased with this weeks progress.

Tomorrow I am going to order a clip-on OTT Light and that will help as I will be able to stitch more in the evenings. Since the lamp went on my work station I have been a bit lost in the evenings as stitching under the normal electric light in my den causes reflections in my magnifier which give me a headache. However I did not want another standard type lamp as I still have the clip for holding my frame and my magnifyer attached to what was the old lamp (the lamp bit having been removed), so a clip on lamp seems the ideal thing. Also I had a problem with my other light as it got so hot and as my den gets most of the days sunshine this is a very warm room anyway. I asked about and the OTT lights are very low voltage so do not get hot like normal lamps, I am also told that the "true colour" light they give off is excellent for stitching with so fingers crossed.

Tomorrow is my day for taking Mum shopping etc so it will be evening before I can stitch, but I am really looking forward to starting my Judy Dixon "Cottage Dreams" the first of the new additions to the rota.

Thank you once again for visiting my little nook and to those of you who find the time to leave me a comment. I so enjoy reading what you have to say.

May your frogs stay in their pond.

Sunday, 29 June 2008

J for Jasmin

Thank you for all the good wishes for our meal. It was here and it was as always a beautiful meal. I had a Goats Cheese tartlet for starters, Lemon Sole for main andfor dessert a Baileys & Cappacino Creme Brulee mmmmmmmmmm. After the meal the family all headed home but the friends came back to our house for coffee and a peaceful chat and it was almost 3 am before they left.

On the stitching front there was none done yesterday but today has been rather a lazy day so I have had some time to stitch. I finished J for Jasmine, though there is still a little bee and a bird to be added close by.
I have also made a start on the challenge as I have a plan 0-) I think. Tomorrow I had hoped to start the next project on my rota but as I have not touched ISD and I really want to do at least a little on that every week then that is my plan for tomorrow.
Rachael & Karen (Little Cat) the link above will help.
Andrea, welcome back hope you had a good holiday.
To everyone else, as always thank for all the lovely comments.

may your frogs stay in their pond.

J for Jasmin

Saturday, 28 June 2008

My Drop In The Ocean

I have had very little stitching time in the last few days, in fact none at all on Thursday. But I did manage a little on Wednesday and yesterday and the HAED is a little further on than when it last appeared in March.

It looks ok until you see in in proportion to the fabric lol.
Tonight we are taking the whole family and some friends out for a meal to celebrate Keiths big six zero. His birthday is not until Tuesday but it would have been too much to organise on a weekday, especially as Oz is always in bed for 7 pm on school nights.
We are going to our favourite place which is about an hour from here. If anyone knows Ashbourne in Derbyshire then it is not far from there. It is called The Coach And Horses and is on the main road going through Fenny Bently, 10 mins out of Ashbourne on the Buxton Road. Beautiful home cooked locally source food so the menu is always different. If you are in the area then I would highly recommend trying it.
Not sure that I will get much time for stitching over the weekend but if I do then today it will be on UFO and tomorrow on I Still Do.
Thank you for all your wonderful coments over the last couple of posts, some of them have had me laughing and many have made me smile. You are all so very supportive. Also yes I do know how many beautiful blogs are out there and of course there are times when even your favourites have a topic or a project that does not appeal to you leaving you with nothing to say, but I really do appreciate each and every comment when you get the time and the inclination so thank you once again.

Wednesday, 25 June 2008


I have just had to post tonight to say Thank You, Thank You, Thank You. Fifteen wonderful, wonderful people left a comment regarding my reorganisation of my rota. I really did not expect any comments at all. The main reason for writing that post was to set it in concrete so to speak before I changed my mind yet again.
Many of you said you admired how organised I was (oh how little you know me LOL). I started stitching about 14 years ago with a little kit I bought whilst down in sussex, it took me about a week to stitch. When I came home I wanted to try again and my son and his then girlfriend (now wife) bought me the DMC Mother & Child Chart. This was really the start for me. I didnt want it in the blues that the chart called for so i spend a good hour or so kneeling on the floor of the shop with all the blues in my hand and every shade of pink they had in front of me until I thought I had the equivelant shades in the alternative colour. I came home and hardly took my coat off before I started and for the next month I did nothing (and I mean nothing) but stitch. I was completely and utterly hooked. This one completed I went to look for some more charts and there was so many and I wanted to do them all now. I started one, but could not settle because another one was calling me, that one started and I knew I should have done the other one first, I am sure many of you will know exactly what I mean, before I knew it I had about 20 projects in my draw, all started but little hope of getting them finish - I had the worst case of startitise you could ever imagine, and I was still buying charts. At the back of my mind I felt guilty I knew I was spending money that we did not have a lot of, on things which were not satisfying me as the minute I started something I was in my mind looking for the next project. I read an article about someone who sounded just like me and she worked on a rota system. I took about 6 things out of the draw, wrote a list and started. I timed myself, 10 hours I only had to do 10 hours and then I could start the next one,
each time I got the end of the rota I took another out of the draw and added that, and I started slowly to get finishes. The day came when I got to the end of my rota and there was nothing in the draw - I got to start a brand new project. For me it worked. Even now I will be stitching away and planning what will come into the rota next, will it be this piece or will it be that piece. But I stick with the rota because I do get to start new projects but I do get to finish things too.
So you see its not a matter of being organised its just a way of coping with an addiction for me.
Sue asked how long I spend on each project. Well that is hard to say because I stitch while I am enjoying it to a great extent. I do try to work on a project for at least one whole day - but sometimes I may get 4 or 5 hours to stitch in a day and others I may be lucky to get half an hour. Also I work my rota Monday to Friday -saving the weekends for SALs and anything that takes my fancy- and I try never to carry a piece over the weekend but I may have worked on the piece for the whole 5 days. However it goes away Friday night and the new week brings out a fresh piece. In the past I have only ever started a new piece at the end of the rota round, so this time putting a new piece in where a piece is finished is just a completely different way to me. It also means if I have two finishes then next time I will have two new starts lol.
Once again thank you to all you wonderful people your comments were so kind and so encouraging as always, it is truely a privilege to have you visit me.

may your frogs stay in their pond.

Monday, 23 June 2008

Rota Reorganisation

Well thats what it is though I admit it does not make for a very thrilling title. It may even make for a very boring post but I am not going to apologise for that so if you dont fancy finding out what I am going to do then please feel free to give this one a miss.
I have been letting my rotation run down a little recently and not adding something at the end of each round as normal. The reason for this is I have a number of BAPS and they always seem to end up in a little heap together. I keep shuffling round and shuffling round but they still always slowly creep back together as the things between them are completed.
I am now down to 7 items I think the lowest I have ever had has been 6 - and the highest 19.
Five of these items are big ones, HAED, THE QUILTMAKER, GRACIOUS ERA, FAIRIES and TAJ. The other two are the Blackwork House and the Hardanger House.
I have decide that 12 is a nice number (for the now though I would like to reduce it to 8 eventually) and I am going to stick at that. I will have six cross stitch and six other stitches alternating between each other.
So what are the new ones I hear you asking? Firstly three of them are not new, they are I guess UFOs as two were started as holiday stitches and have not been touched since.
These are Jasmine and Come and Share, and the third one is Heirloom Christmas. This one was started as a Sal with Elaine, it then started to sink and Jane joined me and saved the day for a while but it soon became obviouse that it would never be done for Christmas and it again got put on one side. So I thought if I added it to my rota there is a very slight chance it will get done for Christmas either this year or next year, but having done such a lot of hard work on this one I really do not want to see it fade away.
The other two are completely new ones and they are Garden Recipe by The Drawn Thread, this was one of my Christmas presents from my friend Terri and I love it.
Lastly but not least is one i have been wanting to start for a very long time. It is the very beautiful Cottage Dreams by Judy Dixon.

1. XS - HEAD
12. SP - TAJ
Instead of adding a new piece at the end of each rotation I am going to replace a piece like for like as it is finished. So if I finish Blackwork House it will be replaced with something that I class as SP-eciality - which is anything thats not pure cross stitch. I do not know if this will work for me or not. I have until recently been really happy with my old rotation system but until I can get rid of some of the really big ones then I think this might be a better idea. The main problem is I always fall for the really big ones and do have quite a number of BAPS in my to do pile, but we shall see - if it doesnt work I can always go back to the old system.
I hope I have not bored you too much, and if you have got this far you are a real trooper, who is either a great friend or a glutten for punishment - lol and maybe both. So thank you so much and will try and make my next post a little more interesting. I am hoping to start on the new rota on Wednesday.
may your frogs stay in their pond.

Sunday, 22 June 2008

A Rose And A Challenge.

Last year I made a scissor fob for AnnTs birthday and she asked if I would make her another this year for her blue scissors. I thought it would be nice to do the Stich and Stash forum challenge into a scissor pocket (something I had not attempted before) and I was so pleased with it I decided to make the scissor fob for Ann to match and send them both to her. I am glad to say she liked them. I really enjoyed making this little scissor pocket. I think the hardest part was folding it so that the design was symetrical and I felt I did quite well. I was rather disappointed that having had two months and such a large choice there were only 6 pictures to show on reveal day. Karen puts a lot of work into searching out lovely freebie designs for us to choose from each month and its such a shame to get such a pathetic reaction.

I didnt get any stitching done at all yesterday and today I wanted to get EMS Rose done and out of the way as in just over a weeks time the next part will be out. I am so enjoying this one, I was really unsure about starting this, I couldnt get the colours I had originally wanted (I ordered the thread in bulk from the supplier but when it came it was nothing like the one I had in stock). Also its not the sort of thing that would normally appeal to me. However it did and by a fluke I chose the colours - or the colours chose me, I'm not sure which and I started it. Now I love it and love every stitch I put in it.
I know I have another hectic couple of weeks ahead. Mum is going to have her Living Room and Dining Room decorated. She is getting a professional decorator in to do it as I think she has given up on waiting for us. It is just so difficult when you are trying to manage your own home, help the kids with theirs - and as my daughter is buying her property on her own its always Dad she calls for help lol, and try doing everything for Mum too. I do not begrudge any of them help and we do as much as we can but it would be nice to be at a place where we could just sit down in the evening and not be rushing round like headless chickens which seems to happen far too often. Anyway Mum bless her has decided to have someone in but she has cabinets full of beautiful old and delicate china and they all have to be emptied and everything carefully wrapped and put away before the decorate comes. Luckily we have two weeks to do this but I think it is going to take a lot of doing. Also we have to go look for new curtaining fabric, and she still needs a little unit and some bits and bobs for her new bathroom.

We are also going to be having a visitor for the next couple of weeks. His name is Pete and he is coming on Tuesday so that he has time to settle in before his humans go away on Thursday. His humans are my brother and his family and Pete is a tortoise. I must admit I do not really know what you do with a tortoise, you cant really stroke them, they dont play ball or roll over to have their tummy tickled, oh well we shall see lol.

On a last note I am going to be doing ISD tomorrow if I get chance and tomorrow I will also tell you all about my new rota and what is happening with that.

Thank you for all your comments, I have had some really lovely comments in the last few weeks and they really mean such a lot to me. I do always try to leave comments when I visit other blogs which is probably why it takes me so long to get round to you all. If I see things I like I have to say so and can only assume that those that do not leave comments do not like what they see, but maybe that isnt the reason, maybe they are shy, or maybe for some reason they cannot leave a comment. I have visited blogs which do not like me and will not allow me to leave a comment. If this is the reason then I would be grateful if you could let me know and my email connection is is my side bar to help you. Thank you once again dear friends.

may your frogs stay in the pond

Saturday, 21 June 2008


Here was my darling boy this morning. It was lovely having him for his special birthday breakfast - home made pancakes, some with maple syrup (too sweet for me) and some with fresh lemon juice and a sprinkle of sugar (too tart for me). Granny and Grandpa had fresh orange sqeezed on theirs. We have now taken him home and this afternoon 10 little boys will run wild through space for two hours and this evening Granny and Grandpa will be going back to celebrate much more quietly with the adults. What a shame it is such a wet day today. It would have been nice to have had the party in the garden. It is also a shame as today is Long Eaton Carnival and it will be no fun sitting on a float in the rain. It is also the Derbyshire County Show which is to be held at Elvaston Country Park, and which I would love to have visited, but these will both be ruined by the weather.

The last time Taj came out was in February and I am afraid there has been little progress made this time. I have been so busy and I feel so tired that when I have sat down to stitch I could just feel my eyes closing. Still a little progress is better than none. And hopefully next time more will get done.
The Rocket - well the less said the better, in my opinion an utter disaster, it was such an arkward shape to cover and I think with being so tired my concentration was not what it should have been.

However that said the birthday boy was thrilled with it and as long as he is happy that I guess is all that matters at the end of the day. I have been very brave and added a picture but if you have to look please try looking at it through Oscars eyes lol then you will think its wonderful.


Wednesday, 18 June 2008

Quick Update on ISD

Just a very quick update on ISD. As you can see I did not get very much done this week , but just to prove there was some progress I have put a picture of last weeks below too lol. Considering how much time I actually spent stitching I am really pleased I got that much done.
Taj is already and waiting for a start later today.
I am hoping to get the middle done this time but I really think that will be impossible. No harm in hoping though.
Right I must away and get dressed or the funeral will be over before we get there.
Take care my friends, thank you once again for visiting and for all the lovely comments. Will try and reply some of you later.

may your frogs stay in the pond.

Tuesday, 17 June 2008

Gigi won the day

Yesterday I said I would be working a bit more on my UFO, but that was before I had seen the next part of Gigi (Sorry Mr Stick but I did do some this week). Part 6 was released and I just had to do it first. I just love, love, love this one. I love the colours, the design and most of all the stitching on it. I made a teeny tiny change though. I hate queen stitch - its not hard I know but its not the stitching its the finish of it. I just do not like it. Anyway there was a little tied windmill stitch and I liked that so I did another one in place of the queen stitch and I am really happy with the results.

Today I hope to get a bit stitched on ISD. I do not think it will be very much at all today though as I am off out in a minute (coffee with a friend), and then I really must make a start of the Rocket later. I have an oblong sponge type cake so I am hoping i can cut the shape out of that. We shall see lol.

Hope you are all busy with your stitching, and thank you once again for finding the time to come and take a peep into my little Nook.

may your frogs stay in the pond

Sunday, 15 June 2008

Part Five And A Half

I had hoped to be saying that part 6 was completed but unfortunately that is not the case. It is about half done and now it will have to wait until next weekend to hopefully be completed. I so want to stay up to date with both this one and Gigi.

Today I did a little more on Garden Alphabet, when I say a little more I mean all of about 40 stitches lol. Still it is progress of a kind but far from having the flower complete as I had hoped. I know I will not have a lot of time for stitching tomorrow so I am just going to stick with GA for the little bit I can get done then that too will go away till next weekend.

Monday should really be my day for the ISD sal with Dawn, but I am not going to Mums on Tuesday this week so will do it then, and as Dawn is moving house at the beginning of this week I am pretty sure she won't miss me one little bit.
Good Luck with the move Dawn and hope your internet connection goes smoothly.

After ISD will be Taj which is the last in my rota for this time. I am planning on a major overall of the rota before it starts again. Poor old Taj will not be getting much attention this week either though as time is going to be limited. Tomorrow is the lunch and hair trim I should have had on Friday but which had to be cancelled due to a migrane attack. Tuesday (shs I dont want to jinx this but it should be a day all to myself) . Wednesday I am taking Mum to a funeral, and hopefully back in time to go to the local carpet shop as she wants a carpet for her new bathroom. Thursday I am again at Mums to take her shopping and we need to pop into Derby but I need to be back early as I am picking Oscar up from school and he is coming to stay at our house till Saturday morning. Also during the week I have a card to make for Oscar and I also have a birthday cake to make and decorate for him as he will be 6 on Saturday. It has to be a rocket cake this year as his birthday party will be space themed.

I do hope Chris is reading this as she said to me today that she would like to finish work so she had time to stitch . Oh I would love time to stitch, but life is fun and there never seems to be a dull moment at our house and I guess that is what is important in life.

Thank you for all your lovely comment they really are appreciated, and just to show I take notice of what you say there is a little bit added under my signature which I am going to try to keep there. I would put it down permentantly if I could remember where I stored my signature in the first place. Someone (cannot remember who lol) has the words "of all the things I miss. I miss my mind the most" after their signature; oh they are my sentiments exactly and I know just what she means.

may your frogs stay in the pond xx

Saturday, 14 June 2008

All Made Up

I took a view of this on its side too as the edging was so pretty.

Have a wonderful weekend whatever are doing and if it is stitching then I hope your frogs stay in their ponds.


Helen x

Thursday, 12 June 2008

HD For Friends

Not a brilliant picture but it was 10.30 when I finished this and I wanted to share with you before I went to bed.

from The Victoria Sampler. Stitched on 28ct Antique White evenweave using Dinky Dyes Silks and Anchor perle. Started on 10th February and finished today the 12th June 2008.

This was lovely to stitch and I have really enjoyed it. I am going to finish it like a large pinkeep and it is going on the wall of my den where I keep the treasures from my treasured friends.

Not sure what I am going to do tomorrow but most likely it will be EMS Rose Sampler as I still have part 6 to do on that and I would like to get that part out of the way before Gigi is released on the 15/16th of the month.

Thanks for keeping your fingers crossed Karan - it worked.

Vonna, no more nattering in bed lol and yes I have heard of yattering but its not a word we use in this area.

I will try in the next few days to sort a new picture for the top - mmm wonder where I shall choose to share with you this time.

Goodnight all, thank you for continuing to visit me and for all the lovely comments.


Wednesday, 11 June 2008

A Little Unfinished Business

Yesterday was UFO day and I did the little dragon fly and started on the J for Jasmin. Was at Mums most of the day and my daughter came in the evening so not a lot got done but it was a lovely change from stitching ivy. I must stitch another couple of leaves down this left hand side before I move on though or I will be like before and having to stitch dozens of the things.

I forgot to say that I had been stitching at the weekend but it was the monthly challenge for the Stitch and Stash forum at Jaynes Attic and I am happy to say that is now finished and made up and ready for reveal day which I think is the 24th or 25th June. There was a problem at the forum at the beginning of last month when an update went wrong. During this time all the votes for the May challenge were lost so it was decided that we could do any of the chosen charts and also we were given until June to stitch as it took quite a while before people could get into the site again. So this month it will be a very mixed bunch of designs and finishes so I am looking forward to seeing all of those.

Today its rota and should be Taj but as I only have that one and Friends left to do this time I decided I would do Friends first - I am hoping that this one is going to be a finish (fingers crossed tightly) though I am not sure how much I will get done today. I have to go to the Post Office before I do anything else today and later I am meeting friends for lunch and going to have my hair trimmed. Still hoping to get a good bit of stitching in so watch this space....

Speak to you all again soon and thank you for your continued support.


Monday, 9 June 2008

The Frog was invited...

My darling hubby is normally very very supportive where my stitching is concerned. When I chose I Still Do to stitch for our next years anniversary he was shown the chart and he approved. I even consulted him on the colour, so last night he shocked me. I was getting I Still Do out and laying everything ready as I wanted to make an early start (before other things took over lol) and my darling H walked in and said "I don't like that". I was horrified, "but you saw it before I started" I gasped. What he did not like was the dark thread he thought it was awful. He said that he much prefered the original thread and though I would have been better sticking to that. Anyway I thought about it for a while and to be honest I think on looking at it for a 2nd time I had to agree with him. So this morning I actually invited Mr Frog into my den. I cursed him a little - well rather a lot really as frogging on 36 count is not easy. The frogging completed and much to my suprise it had not left a stain - I then began all over again with the border at the top. For this reason I have not actually got much further than I got last week but I must admit I really do think it looks a lot better. I wonder if Dawn will put a photo in her blog this week. I think she will be leaving me way behind. I had a nice suprise in the post this morning. A while back I admired a Blackwork Elephant that Beatrice had stitched. A couple of days later she sent me an email and offered to send me the chart if I would like it. Well today the chart arrived and she had also sent me the lovely gold thread that was left from her Elephant, some black linen thread and a sweet little chart from one of her local designers. Thank you Beatrice I was thrilled with it all.

Once again I want to thank you all for visiting me in my little Nook. You are all very welcome and I love it when you leave a comment and let me know what you think.

To Vonna & Kendra whilst I am having a natter or nattering my friend in Scotland is having a blether or blethering lol.

Thursday, 5 June 2008

HD Quicky

Another square for the Love Quilts UK. Managed to finish this one last night so that is another of the "bits" out of the way. It is taken from the same DMC Patchwork Animals book that the sheep came from.

This morning I have kitted up a couple of things, put some threads on bobbins, packed the squares for LQ ready for posting, put some threads away. tidied up my den, put some washing in and now Im off to hang it out before going to Mums. Lol also been nattering on MSN and then I wonder why I don't get more stitching done.


Wednesday, 4 June 2008

The White Rabbit..

"I'm late, I'm late", said the white rabbit and just like him I seem to be running late all the time recently. I feel like the dog chasing his tail, no matter how fast i go I always seem to be just that bit behind my targets. I knew this week I had a lot on and would find stitching time difficult so I have decided not to bother with my rota at all but just to try and do some bits that need doing and catch up with my sal and my ufo.
Yesterday was the day that was going to give me the most time so I devoted that to "I Still Do", I didn't get a lot done but I am pleased with my progress. I find I have to do it in quite short sessions as the 36 count is quite tiring on my eyes but I am really enjoying this. Advice please from anyone who has a collection of CC threads. I wanted to do the band across the top so that the outer parts were in the dark shade and the inner in the light shade. When I looked I had a thread called Bordeaux which was more or less the same as the darker part of Hearts on Fire, and that is what i have decided to use but now I need another shade something like the lights or the medium shade in Hearts to do the inner part. I have looked at the thread charts but the reds all look more or less the same on there so any advice would be very welcome.

And last but certainly not least look at this beautiful chart which will, I hope, not be too long working it's way into my rota. This was a gift from Karen who saw it on my wish list. Thank you so much Karen you are as always a star. I have started to kit it up ready but there are a couple that really need to go in front - I really need the time and space in my rota for at least 50 projects.

Sunday, 1 June 2008

Busy Weekend

Another weekend with hardly any stitching touched and I had such high hopes lol.

Saturday we went to York for the day as planned and it was the most beautiful sunshiney day. No we did not go the the racers, but there were lots of people on the train who were going. The couple on the seat opposit and their friends had bought a bottle of champaign, orange juice and "plastic" glasses and were drinking bucks fizz. I did find the Viking Loom and for anyone who has not been to York before I can tell you it is well worth a visit. This is a picture of my stash, though the tins were bought from the market the rest was bought from VL. I must admit to being very naught whilst there though, as I saw the Loopylou Elegance stitched and I just could not resist. It really is a beauty, even my DH thought so, and what better excuse could I have . I know I need another chart just about as much as a hole in the head.

On a slightly different though related topic, a while back while sorting things out at my mums I found my old sewing basket that I had as a child. If you look at this picture of My Stitching Place then you can see it hiding under the table. Anyway it was in a rather delapedated state, the fabric inside was ripped and the original foam padding had turned to dust with age. I have since this picture was taken, stripped it all down and given it a good scrub and I want to have a go at repadding and covering the inside and doing something stitched for the lid and recovering that. The large piece of fabric I bought from VL was with this in mind so I am hoping I will find the time to tackle that soon too.
Today has been very dreary and grey but we went to the garden centre this morning as planned and have since been working in the garden. I am now tired and my back is aching but I must admit the garden does look better for the work, though there is still quite a bit to do. I thought before I sat down and tried to do a bit of stitching I would come and update the blog, so now I am going to vegitate with my needle for the rest of the evening.
Hope everyone has had a lovely weekend.