Come visit with me as I stitch and craft my way from one Christmas to the next - I like to have Christmas projects close by me all year. I have a particular fondness for Santas and Angels. If you have the time, leave a comment so I know you've visited.

Friday, May 21, 2010

Two little finishes

My last two finishes before I leave on my big adventure - I just managed to finish them up in time. The smaller one is finished as a fridge magnet; the larger one is in a 13cm x 10cm ornate gold frame. These are both original designs.
I won't be stitching at all in the next month. Conditions will be too hot and primitive for needlework, so I'm leaving all my stitching supplies at home. I don't think I've had a stitching-free month in the past 25 years, so I'm not sure how that will go! But I may just get some reading done while I'm not stitching, so I will enjoy that. I love reading, but I get so engrossed in books that I get nothing else done - and I mean nothing , no sleep till the book is read, and no-one even gets fed in my house if I have a book in my hands. So I limit my reading to my holidays. I have packed in my on-flight bag two 'disposable' books (ie ones I don't have to bring home) so that should keep me entertained en route to Broome. The three friends I'm travelling with are all readers, so I'm sure we'll get a book-exchange going before too long.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

This is where I will be while I'm MIA

Kimberley Trip
click on the video link half-way down the page

I am so excited! and a trifle scared as well. The trip I'm going on is rated 'challenging' and involves a fair bit of bushwalking in rugged country. I've been in training for a year now, but I was very unfit to start with, so I'm hoping I can make the pace. I've wanted to travel to this area for so long - the far north of Western Australia is the only corner of Australia I've never visited. This trip covers a large area of land - around the size of California, a bit bigger than Germany and Japan, almost twice the size of Britain and New Zealand.

So - see you when I return.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Garden Visitor

I just couldn't resist snapping this gorgeous kookaburra when he visited my front garden this morning. He stayed posed like this for ages - gave me plenty of time to find my camera and take the pic. I consider myself very fortunate to have lots of wild birds visiting each day. As well as the kookaburras I have regular visits from sulphur crested white cockatoos, galahs, lorikeets, rosellas, king parrots, magpies, finches, and willy wagtails. This is probably the same kookaburra, taken later in the day - the angle's not so good on this pic, but the kooka was looking straight at me at the time.

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Two more ornaments

These are Christmas gifts for two little sisters. Their names are on the back. I used the same candycane design I used for a set of ornaments earlier in the month, but I finished these as diamonds rather than square-shaped.

Friday, May 14, 2010

More little finishes, and May TUSAL

I'll start with my TUSAL jar. I'm not sure of the TUSAL date for May, but it's ages since I put in a TUSAL progress pic, so here goes: The compressed pinkish threads in the bottom half are from Angel of Grace; the multicoloured threads on top are from the assortment of Christmas designs I've stitched in May.

And now for the finishes:

Five more tiny Christmas designs framed in gold frames
And this is my latest 'finish', a Christmas ornament for my 3 year old great-nephew Dylan, whose name for himself is 'D'. The Santa alphabet designer is Donna Vermillion Giampa, and the chart is in her Alphabet Soup leaflet (2005).

I have stitched another two little ornament designs - candy canes again, for two little sisters, and I'll be finishng them up into diamond shaped ornaments this time. I hope to finish them up tomorow.

Friday, May 7, 2010

Three more little finishes

These are Christmas gifts for some special children.

I am so enjoying getting some little projects finished this month.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

My Santa ornament for 2010

The design is Santa Face from LA leaflet 604 Here Comes Santa Claus (1988). I love his cheery face. This is my Santa ornament for 2010 - I stitch one Santa ornaments for myself each year.

Monday, May 3, 2010

Six tiny finishes

I had already stitched these tiny Christmas trees some time ago, and today I added the bead decorations and framed them in these tiny gold frames. The frames are just 4 cm x 4.5cm.

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Three little finishes

These are the three little Christmas designs I stitched last week in Kangaroo Valley. I added the beads and finished them as ornaments last night. Theyre all stitched with DMC floss on 18 count white Aida. The larger design is adapted from Barbara Mock's Christmas Quickies II leaflet (Dimensions, 1992) and will be a Christmas gift for my sister. The two smaller ones are also Christmas gifts for a brother and sister (I'll be stitching more of these for other members of the same family) and are from the February 1989 issue of Leisure Arts, from the Calendar design by Regina J Walters for Designs With Scissors. I found this issue of Leisure Arts in an op shop while I was on my camping holiday.

I really did enjoy these finishes!

Saturday, May 1, 2010

HD with me

My L&L Angel of Grace is finished! Yay! She has been my major project all this year, and I was so happy to take her off my lap-frame last night. She really does look a lot nicer than this picture suggests. She was stitched with DMC floss and Mill Hill beads over 2 on 28 count natural Jobelan. I made a few little changes from the charted design. Because I don't like stitching with metallic gold floss, I substituted gold Mill Hill beads (petites for the underskirt hem and bodice trim; seed beads for the overskirt trim and halo) or DMC gold-coloured floss (bodice). I omitted the isolated metallic gold cross stitches in the background of the design. I substituted Mill Hill beads for the cross stitches in the floral trim. I didn't actually follow the chart for the floral trim - I just filled in the space with beads, as the mood took me. I am very happy with the finished Angel. I also substituted Mill Hill petite beads for the two darker shades of DMC charted for the wings.
Now that my Angel is finished I can move on to some other projects (read - Christmas ornaments). I will be bringing Jolly Old Fellow down from the craft room to my stitching corner soon, and I plan to stitch on him for the first week or so of each month July through December.

It's May already ...

and I am just not ready for it! One-third of 2010 is behind us now, but I can't claim to be one-third of the way through all the things I have on my 'to do' list for 2010!

We're just back from a lovely week in the van at Kangaroo Valley, in a particularly beautiful part of the Southern Highlands of NSW. It was a very restful week, though we did quite a lot of day-tripping during the week. I learned something new during the week. I had always thought that ANZAC Day was a day on which Aussies stayed home, with most venturing no further than their local ANZAC memorial and/or march venue, with perhaps a visit to a pub or club later in the day. Not so this year. A very, very large number of families came to Kangaroo Valley for a weekend of camping with their friends. Perhaps because this year we had the benefit of a long weekend for ANZAC Day? We left our almost deserted caravan park Friday morning for a drive over the mountains to Berry and Nowra, and when we arrived back late afternoon, there had been a major population explosion at the caravan park. It was tent city - big time. Hundreds of tents had popped up all over the place, and every tent or group of tents had its own little cooking fire. It was so great to see all those people camping and having fun. On Monday we left the crowded caravan park in the morning, and late afternoon arrived back to an almost empty - but incredibly clean - park. All in all it was a very uplifting experience for me.

I didn't get a lot of stitching time while we were camping, but I did stitch three little Christmas designs that I will turn into Christmas ornaments next week. I didn't take my Angel with me, so I haven't yet finished her - just about half of the beaded floral skirt trim to go, so I'm hoping for a finish in the next few days.