Saturday, October 31, 2009

Friday, October 30, 2009

A pumpkin, cat, and bugaboo!

A sneaky chair stealer!!!

Look who stole my stitching chair this morning before heading off to work!

I think he thought he was getting vitamin D from sitting underneath my Ott-lite! Silly kitty!

Until next time! ^___^

More holiday stitching!

Hi, everyone! I stitched up two more Christmas designs this week :)

Designer: Season's Greetings by Country & Colonial Stitches, JCS 1990
Threads: DMC
Fabric: 28ct evenweave antique white by M.C.G. Textiles
Start/Finish: 10/27-28/2009

Designer: O Christmas Tree by Fanci That, JCS 1990
Threads: DMC
Fabric: 28ct evenweave antique white by M.C.G. Textiles
Start/Finish: 10/29-30/2009

I altered the designs a bit. The first design called for the snowflakes to be stitched one over one, but I couldn't see them on the fabric so I went with two over two snowflakes. The second design originally had snowflakes stitched on the tree, but I like the look of the plain red/green tree with snowflakes around it.

I hope everyone has a great Halloween! I think tomorrow I'll be going by my LNS to get some fabric for more holiday designs before coming home to get ready for trick-or-treaters.

Until next time ^____^

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Holiday stitching begins!

Designer: Christmas Joy by Needle and I, JCS 1990
Threads: DMC
Fabric: 28ct evenweave antique white by M.C.G. Textiles
Start/Finish: 10/24 & 26/2009

A few months ago I had found someone on eBay who was selling old issues of the Just Cross Stitch magazine. I bought about 10 issues from various years that featured their Christmas ornaments.

I finished stitching up this little cutie on Monday and I started another design yesterday, which I hope I can finish today or tomorrow.

I hope everyone is having a great week so far! Are you excited about Halloween? I know I am ;)

Until next time ^____^

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Emily Moreland

Hi, everyone! I had the chance to finish reading Emily Moreland just a little while ago after doing some housework earlier in the day. I will have pictures of the book and a summary of the story later this week.

I hope everyone had a great weekend!

Until next time ^____^

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Surprise birthday!

My family and I took a trip to Uriah, AL last Saturday to surprise our great-aunt as her 86th birthday was earlier that week. If you've ever had the pleasure of driving through Uriah, you will know that is mostly farmland and cotton fields.

My grandmother's family were sharecroppers. Their father bought 60 acres of land during the Great Depression for $900.00. Today the land is rented out to farmers by my great-aunt and uncle. The land is used for cotton crops.

A view of the cotton fields. The cotton hasn't fully blossomed yet, but it is lovely when all of it is open.

Close-up of the cotton rows.

Despite the cold windy weather, my sister, cousin, and I walked down to a pond that our great-aunt's son built about a half a mile behind the house.

View of the goldenrods while walking to the pond.

View of the pond.

Another view of pond.

Coming back to the house, we watched our great-aunt open her gift from all of us. My aunts and mother picked out a lovely ruby and opal pendant for her birthday.

We sung happy birthday and had the cake that my sister had made for our great-aunt.

Birthday cake

View of inside with strawberry filling.

My sister has never been fond of butter cream frosting so she made a whipped cream icing for the cake. The inside of the cake was made of vanilla cake filled with strawberry between the layers. My sister decorated the top of the cake with roses and a chrysanthemum with the words, "Happy Birthday to that Young'un," which is a pleasant memory for our great-aunt. As she was the youngest in the family, everyone would call her 'young-un.'

Later on my aunt, cousin, and I decided to go outside and pick pecans from the tree behind the house.

View of the pecan tree.

The fields as the sun was setting before we left back for Mobile.

I hope we will get back to Uriah soon before the end of the year. I hope to make something yummy from the pecans that we gathered and bring it to my great-aunt and uncle.

Until next time!

Haunted Oakleigh

Last night my friends and I went to the Oakleigh Period House Museum in downtown Mobile. For the last couple of nights, Oakleigh has been open from 6-9pm for 'Haunted' Oakleigh.

Picture from Oakleigh's website mentioned above.

We weren't allowed to take photographs inside the plantation, but I took a picture of my ticket before I had to give it back to the tour guide.

Our guide, Marie.

While being led through each room of the house by a tour guide dressed in period costume, we were told ghost stories pertaining to the house. Rooms usually had someone inside or outside the room's window ready to scream at us or bang the windows to frighten us.

Is it bad that I was more interested in the ghost stories themselves and not the theatricals? I noticed in the children's room upstairs an antique sampler on the wall. I haven't been to Oakleigh since I was in middle school and I would love to go through the house during its regular hours to see everything properly. ESPECIALLY that sampler as I have never seen a historical sampler from Mobile.

People waiting outside for tours to begin.

A picture of the front of the house. It isn't the best photo as I really needed a tripod to get a non-blurry picture. As my friend and I were taking photos of the front of the house, one of the volunteers dressed as a zombie was trying to sneak up on us. I'm glad we survived his onslaughter and weren't hurt for taken our photos ;)

All in all, my friends and I had a great time at the Oakleigh house. The volunteers were very knowledgeable and told their ghost stories well. I think my friends and I will definitely make this an annual trip during the fall.

Until next time!

Old friends, new friends

This morning I woke up early or rather my brain woke me up at 7:30 despite the fact that it is clearly a Saturday. I went by the post office to mail off some packages across the pond and then took a trip to my local library to look for some books to read.

The West Regional branch of my local library has a new exhibition upstairs called the Art of Reading, which features local artists' interpretations on the theme. My favorites were two photographs, one with a close up of a book spine entitled The Art of Wisdom and another with a view of the Library of Congress' pillars, titled Pillars of Knowledge.

Sadly, as much as I loved the various artworks, I was disappointed to see that a good majority of artists were ones that I normally see at the city's museums when they have an exhibition on local art. I was hoping that the younger audiences would have had a bigger part to play in the library's exhibition as a good percentage of patrons to libraries are parents and their children.

Despite all that, I came away with some books that I will start after I finish reading Emily Moreland: Maid of the Valley by the same authoress who wrote Rosaline Woodbridge: The Midnight Visit. I will have to take some photos of the book before I return it later this week. The book is in excellent condition for its age, one hundred and eighty years old.

I picked up some old friends at the library,

and some new friends,

As a child, one of my favorite series were the American Girl books. My sister and I devoured all the girls' stories that were out at the time. My favorites were Molly and Samantha. As I'm still a kid at heart, I picked up several new series today at the library, those of Kaya, Abby, and Josephine. Late in August, I bought the Molly series for my cousin Emily's birthday. Her mother said that she read them in no time at all ;)

While in middle school and high school, I started reading classics in addition to fiction titles. I loved reading the Everyman's Library editions of those books. There was something so special about those cloth covers. Even now when I see them on the shelves of my local library I smile.

I also picked up The Three Musketeers by Alexander Dumas. I started reading it in Egham, but never got around to finishing it. I was hoping to pick up Dracula: The Un-dead, but all the copies were checked out :*( I'll have to wait until next time.

Have a great weekend!

P.S. I won't be stitching any new until I've finished reading Emily Moreland, but no fear, I'll have something stitched up soon!

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Halloween is a Hoot ;)

This little guy took me forever to finish as I've only been working on it for a bit in the mornings before work and on my lunch breaks. It doesn't help that I've had a cold since Sunday. My family has come down with a cold bug. I blame our enthusiasm to pick pecans at my great aunt's house on Saturday in the chilly weather.

Two bags full of pecans that I laid out on our kitchen table to dry for a bit. They are now being stored in an old pillow case in our laundry room. My aunt read online that you are suppose to keep pecans in a cloth sack for two weeks before you shell them so the nuts come out complete. (I didn't know that!)

Halloween is a Hoot

Design: Halloween is a Hoot by Heart in Hand
Threads: DMC Alternatives
Fabric: unknown color, but 28ct
Start/Finish: on/off between 10/12-21/2009

This will be my last fall-themed ornament of the year as I have a lot of stitched pieces that I want to complete as Christmas gifts for my family and friends.

I hope everyone is having a great fall season so far! My friends and I are going to one of Mobile's antebellum houses on Friday as they have a 'haunted' tour that night. If they allow photographs, I will take some ;)

Until next time! ^_____^

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Antique Finds

My sister and I just got back from a local antique show at the Abba Temple in town. We saw a lot of amazing furniture and depression glass. I found two things that I came away with....not jewelry since my dealers weren't at the antique show, but some things that I couldn't resist and were very neat.

The needlework ladies/gents in my audience will love these photos!

An antique needlework made of quilting pieces, lace and ribbon!

The piece is decorated with pale blue ribbon which matches the lovely feather stitches on the edges of the needlebook.

Ribbon undone.... reveal pins.

Close-up of pins.

Does anyone know what this little needlebook dates to? I thought maybe the size of the pearl pins would be a clue perhaps. The dealer I bought the needlebook from said that she bought it from someone in Mississippi. I was thinking the book dates to maybe the 40s or 50s, but I'm no expert.

My other find for the day was an antique book dated from 1889 called Young Days, which is a collection of articles for children.

Front cover

Back cover

Title illustration

Date and publisher

Owner's signature: Mary Madden

There are some interesting articles in the book. Subjects like Queen Victoria, fairy tales, and the far off lands of Constantinople and Japan, with the city of Tokyo spelled 'Tokio.'

I'll post later with other pics from today. My family and I are going to visit my great-aunt in Uriah, AL. She had her 86th birthday earlier in the week so we are going to celebrate with a homemade cake decorated by my sister and a lovely bouquet of flowers.

Until next time! ^____^ (The temperatures today are in the 60s-70s. It seems cold for us since we have had temps in the 80s lately, but it's great to have Fall weather finally!

Thursday, October 15, 2009

A lovely surprise!

Look what I got in the mail today!!


A friend of mine in New Zealand told me that she would send me something 'kiwi' in the mail....I definitely wasn't expecting all of these goodies.

I received a beautiful 2010 calendar, a fridge magnet of Larnach Castle, a Maori talisman, tiramisu Cadbury chocolate (yummy!), two GORGEOUS brooches, and the best gift of all....

A beautiful bookmark that my friend stitched up for me! Isn't it lovely? It is my second piece of cross stitch that I have received from a friend. Those are the best kind of gifts.

A big THANKS to a caring friend in the 'down under' for such great gifts! I hope you had a great time with your family and friends in Canada during your Thanksgiving holidays ;)

Until next time!

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Winter Sampler finish

Hi! I finished up my Winter Sampler just a few minutes ago while watching So You Think You Can Dance and Glee.

Design: Winter Sampler by Little House Needleworks, JCS Christmas 2009 issue
Threads: DMC Alternatives blanc, 433, 524, 3052, and 3721
Fabric: 28ct white evenweave by M.C.G. Textiles
Start/Finish: 10/12-14/2009

I haven't decided on how to finish this design. Yes, it is in the JCS ornament magazine, but I think it would look nice in a small frame for the holidays or as a pinkeep. I think I'll put it aside until I decide what to do with it :)

Until next time!

Monday, October 12, 2009

A small start

Hi! While waiting for the laundry to dry, I decided to start a small design in the JCS 2009 Christmas Ornament magazine. I picked up the magazine yesterday while I was at my local BN. I almost missed it on the shelves as it wasn't in its usually location with the other craft magazines.

I love the colors for this design ;)

Design: Winter Sampler by Little House Needleworks, JCS Christmas 2009 issue
Threads: DMC Alternatives blanc, 433, 524, 3052, and 3721
Fabric: 28ct white evenweave by M.C.G. Textiles
Start: 10/12/2009

Hopefully, I'll be able to finish up the border around this design tomorrow!

Until next time!

Pinkeep finish ;)

Hi, everyone! I have the day off so I decided to finish up one of my Halloween designs before doing some more housework.

Design: Five Little Pumpkins by JBW Designs
Threads: DMC
Fabric: 28ct evenweave antique white M.C.G. Textiles
Start/Finish: 9/11-13/2009, finished as pinkeep 10/12/2009

Backing fabric.

I used black braid around the edge, accented with green pearlized pins and one of my fimo clay pumpkin pins on top.

This morning I got up early to stop by Hobby Lobby and got two pieces of foamboard cut into 5x5 and 6x6 squares. Yes, it might seem lazy, but I can't cut a straight line to save my life! Of course, I'll be using those squares for pinkeep and other finishes ^___^

Have a great day everyone! Until next time ^_____^