Tuesday, 30 December 2008

Friends and A Dance

Do you like my new header? I received it earlier this month but was assured it was not a Christmas present and I was to open immediately - and when I did it was definitely a wow for me. It was made by my dear friend Ann but as I have made so many friends both through being here blogging and from the couple of chat rooms I belong too (Jaynes Attic Stitch and Stash and A Crafty Natter), I knew at once that I wanted it for my header. For me this is what blogging is all about - Friends.

Here is another stunning gift I received a couple of days ago and it was my prize for winning the Blogoversary draw on Dani's blog a while back. It is hanging on my living room wall at the moment, too nice to be hidden away on the tree. Dani chose this for me as I had admired it on her blog a while back. Isn't is beautiful and once again Thank You Dani.

Last but certainly not least in the Friends catagory is the picture of all the stitching stash I received at Christmas. The Fiskars Scissor Sharpeners and the Floss away bags were part of my present from my son and his wife but the rest are all from friends. I must make mention of the beautiful hand stitched items, needleroll from dear friend Terri, little box with hand stitched lid from our own Colly (Col's Creations) and new scissors with a lovely fob (that is a great match for the needleroll) from the lovely Rachael. I felt so very spoilt.
The dance of the title is for my happy dance as I finished "Off To Plough" yesterday. I will not be framing this one for a while as I have another two (First Post and On the Beat) to do and would also like to get a couple more of these too and I want to frame them all the same so they can hang as a group. I actually bought this as a kit but because I hate Aida and because the other two I had managed to get as "chart only" bargains I have not used anything from the kit. Its DMC threads which I have and I substituted the fabric for a 28 count DMC linen. I have enough to do them all but would not recommend this linen as I found it quite difficult to stitch on. It is far finer than any other linen I have used which meant that you could see through it and I found that this meant it was distracting to stitch on, though thankfully the holes are quite distinct which is a bit of a bonus on a Heritage Chart. I find that Heritage uses a lot of horizontal and verticle half stitches which while not difficult seem very time consuming but the results are really good. Where else on such a small chart would you get the movement that you can almost see in the horses and their leader. LOL just sitting here typing and I glanced at the picture and realised I have not added the long stitches lol. Still there are very few of them so for the now I will leave it. Oh well an almost HD. Also an almost HD though I do not think it will make it now is the Hardanger Tissue Box. I was feeling very content as I put the last stitch (or so I thought) in the body of the work - just the buttonhole stitching round the edge to do!!!! before I realised I had not done all the tiny algerian eyes. I have done three sets of them this afternoon but my eyes do not deal well with white on white so no stitching on this one tonight. So it will go away for a few days and come out to be my first finish for 2009 I hope. Tomorrow our little darling is coming to stay and spend the night so that he will be here when all the family arrive for dinner on New Years Day. This means that not much stitching will get done and also I really want to start on my Neighbourhood tomorrow, getting all the prep finished and maybe even making a start on the verse.
Oh I almost forgot that I was to tell you my plans for next years stitching. I am going to try to concentrate on I Still Do, Water Tiger and My Neighbourhood Village to start with. I know that with two new babies due (the Christmas Day one has decided its too cold to arrive yet) things may get a little side tracked. Also I will fit in some of my smaller and quicker projects I have been wanting to do for so long. I will continue working mainly with these three projects as and when I please up until my holidays (mid feb) and then will have a review again. I guess at the moment that means all my WIPs have become UFOs as there will certainly be a couple of months when they stay in their box in the dark - but I hope to draw these in a little at a time.
I have happily worked on a rota system for over 10 years and for me it worked - or it did until last year when for some reason I just felt as though I was getting nowhere fast and began to get rather despondant about the whole stitching thing. It was not doing the stitching but the projects themsleves that I was getting bogged down with. As soon as I started on something instead of relaxing and enjoying the stitching a niggly little worm in the back of my head was saying - get on with the next one this is taking too long - and so the thought came that it was time for a change. I am sure I will return to the rota but my problem is I like big projects and as I have now been working on at least one of them for 5 years it was getting out of hand. I could bring in a small project and complete it but instead of feeling the elation that once accompanied these HDs it was more a feeling of guilt for not getting on with the big projects - so as guilt and hobby are not two words I wish to put together - well time for a new approach and see how things go.
I want to take this opportunity for wishing you all a VERY HAPPY AND HEALTHY 2009
and to thank you once again for visiting and reading my blog. Also to the many of you who I have over the last few years come to call Friend, thank you from the bottom of my heart - you are all treasures.
may your frogs stay in their ponds


Anonymous said...

Lovely Ornament gift!! and a super finish,I do like those shaded pictures!!
I have finally got some more thread so I may have a HD on my Tissue box cover as well!
Have a wonderful New Year!!

Andrea said...

You have received some wonderful Christmas gifts and a great finish.

Have a happy and healthy 2009.

Marita said...

Happy New Year.

Lovely stitching gifts :)

I hope you can work out your rota issues for 2009.

jane said...

lovely gifts Helen - enjoy them, I hope you have a great New Year and find a stitching routine that suits you.

Anonymous said...

What wonderful stitchy gifts that you have received. Hope you will come up with a nice stitching plan that works for you in the new year. I'll be along the line watching. :-) I love visiting your blog and want to wish you and your family a Happy and Healthy New Year.

Kathy A. said...

Wishing you and your family a Happy and Healthy New Year. I consider you one of my new blessings in this past year and look forward to sharing with you in 2009.
Hugs from Canada

Dani - tkdchick said...

Helend I'm glad you really like your little giftie! Why make something totally different when I knew you really liked something!

You got some fantastic stitchy gifts this year! Lucky you!

I've tried rotation stitching and it just doesn't work for me. I really am happiest when I'm focusing on one project at a time... things get finished!

Best of luck with your new stitching plan in 2009!

Happy New Year!

Mylene said...

You received so many beautiful gifts and that's a wonderful finish.

A very HAppy New Year to you!!

Chiloe said...

Happy New Year Helen !!! Hope to see more marvelous pieces in 2009 !!!

The new headezr is nice but the image is huge on my computer screen (I can't even see it all) Maybe it's because you didn't change your templates on Blogger? You need to use first their Minima templates before to be able to change the background with cute templates.

Angela said...

As Chiloe noted the new header is also too large to fit onto my 20 inch monitor properly.

You have recieved some gifts.

Sally said...

You received some lovely gifts Helen and I love your prize from Dani. It's gorgeous.

Happy New Year!

Julie said...

Great gifts received.

Happy New Year

Christine said...

A very happy new yaer to you too. I love those sepia heritage designs, I did the pit head one once, they do have a lot of strange fractionals in them, but the efffect is stunning

Elisa said...

Happy 2009 to you and yours!!
Elisa x

Karen said...

Happy New Year Helen I hope 2009 is a wonderful year for you all

Karan said...

Love the new header - gorgeous piece, as is the ornie from Dani.
Very nice stash gifts too. :0)
Great finish - I love this Heritage range & stitched several some years ago. Will check & see what charts I have kept & let you know.
Good Luck with the goals & hope you can settle on a new way of working your rotation.
Best wishes for a very Happy, Peaceful & Prosperous 2009 for you & yours Helen. :0)