Monday, December 26, 2005

Oak Tree After 1 Week

Here is Oak Tree by Hinzeit after one week. I was hoping to get more stitching done, but it has been a very busy week. I also had plans of stitching all day today, but we ended up shopping instead. No stash shopping just yet, but I will definitely go shopping this week.

Monday, December 19, 2005

And The Winner Is...

...Oak Tree by Hinzeit!

This chart was one of the many charts I purchased at The Needlehive on my birthday. I really like this chart. Its so simple, and yet so pretty.

I am stitching it on a piece of 30 count Legacy Linen in Vanilla Gold. The design only uses 8 colors. I've only done a bit of the border so far. I'll take a progress pic after a week.

I think that this design has been discontinued. I cannot find a picture of it on line. The pic that came with the chart was poorly taken. The border is supposed to be Xs and satin stitches, but you can barely see that on the picture.

I started stitching on the top left side of the design. I think I will leave the satin stitches last as I don't want the thread to snag.

I still haven't decided if I will do a rotation this year, or if I'll work on one piece at a time. We'll see I guess. I would really like to have more finishes in 2006 than I did in 2005.

Friday, December 16, 2005

Dance With Me!

I finally finished my super secret project. Unfortunately, I can't share pics right now. Stay tuned some time February 2006 (I think). Not being able to post progress pics SUCKS. I love sharing progress pics. I love looking at them. I love receiving comments about them. I cannot wait to get permission to share.

So what else is up? I got a nice bonus at work. Whoohoo. Of course, it disappeared in the land of bills and responsibility instead of disappearing at an ONS or LNS. :P Oh well. I plan on shopping after Christmas.
What else? We've been getting a LOT of snow. I'm lucky I work for a company that cares about its employees getting home safely. We've been sent home early 3 times since I started in October. The first one wasn't a snow day though. A girl at work had her wedding Friday night, so we all got to go home early to have time to get ready for the wedding. The other 2 times were definitely snow days. I got to go home at 2:30 today. The snow wasn't bad, but it was nice to go home early.
Now that the secret project is done, what to work on next? I was going to work on Celtic Banner, but I think I'll work on Wildlife instead... OR do I start something totally new? Hmmm... decisions, decisions, decisions.

Monday, November 28, 2005

No, I'm not dead

I'm not dead, just lazy about blogging . But today I'm back with lots and lots of pictures!

First of all, my very late bday prezzie piccies.

The flowers T got me stayed alive for a little over a week. They smelled really, really good and they were so pretty. The roses wilted before the other flowers did (I have no idea what they are). The other ones stayed alive for 2 weeks. They came in a pretty pink vase which I kept and is at the moment sitting in a cupboard in the basement.

I also got a whole bunch of Hello Kitty stuff. The Choco Cat pillow was something I picked out. It's so cute I just had to get it! Inside the tin box are a whole bunch of stickers, gel pens, colored pencils and stamps, all Hello Kitty, of course.

Next are the charts I got from The Needle Hive. I got A LOT! One day I'll be able to stitch all of them. hahaha. The Cross Stitch calendar I got at Media Play. It has yucky, stiff Aida fabric in it, but I figure I'll just replace the fabric. The designs inside are cute and simple. I like that it had the mat already. All I need is to find the right size frames. One day I'll learn to stretch and frame my own work.

I also got some lovely surprises in the mail. Sylvia sent me Dragon Dreams' Here Be Dragons, the JCS issue that had DVG's Lemons, Limes & More pillow chart and a lovely notepad. Recently, she also sent me another JCS issue with the Peach pillow chart in it. Yay Sylvia!

I also got Cross Stitch Gold issue #29 from Kati. Thank you Kati for filling a blank in my collection!

Ooh! And I almost forgot about a prize I won during The Needlework Show. I won 2 charts of my choice from Dames of the Needle. They are lovely and I can't wait to start working on Elizabeth Savilles 1841 Sampler.


Next up are Thanksgiving pictures! T & I stayed home and made our traditional Thanksgiving fare. The turkey was absolutely perfect. The skin was crispy, the meat was juicy and it was absolutely yummy! T stuffed it with apples, oranges, onions and all sorts of spices. Then he made a mix of softened butter, olive oil and spices and I had the wonderful job of rubbing it all over the turkey. Ick. It felt gross, but the results are amazing.

We also had acorn squash, mashed potatoes, stuffing, rolls, green beans, gravy and two kinds of pie (pecan and pumpkin).


As for stitching, I'm still busy with my super secret project. I can't wait until its done and I'm finally allowed to show pictures!

Sunday, November 06, 2005

Best Birthday Ever!

This has got to be my best birthday EVER. We started celebrating my birthday on Thursday night. DH took me out to a fancy dinner at The Red Mill Inn. It was amazing. He had Prime Rib and I had Tuscan Shrimp. The Prime Rib was the house specialty, so I had to try several bites of it.

After dinner, we went to Barnes and Noble, where I got 3 magazines: Cross Stitch Collection (Nov. 2005), Cross Stitch Gold (Issue #34), and DMC's Best of Cross Stitch Favorites. After that was more shopping at AC Moore. I got Fish City and 2 kits that were in the 50% off bin (Wintertime Friends and Universal Unity). I also got a Choco Cat pillow. It is sooo cute!

DH also bought me all sorts of things at AC Moore. I got a whole bunch of Hello Kitty stickers, a planner, a metal box (perfect for cross stitch trinkets), a memory book and he also got me a Sharpie set!

On Friday, DH had a bouquet of pink roses delivered to me at work. They're gorgeous! That night we went out to dinner again. This time at Chili's. I had Cajun Ribeye and it was really good. I couldn't finish the whole thing tho so I'll be having the leftovers for dinner soon.

Yesterday, we went to East Aurora to check out my not-so-LNS, The Needle Hive. I went totally crazy! The store is adorable. They mostly carry primitives and samplers and Americana items. There were two models that I fell in love with, but both were out of stock. The first one was the Red Reindeer Sampler and the other one was a kit of brightly colored coffee cups. Oh well, its not like I wasn't able to find other things that I liked. DH was the eager evil enabler, showing me all sorts of pretty charts and kits. Here is my haul:

Fabric: 28 ct Silvery Moon Cashel Linen, 30 ct Vanilla Gold Legacy Linen and 28 ct Blue Hand-dyed Linen

Fibers: 3 GAST (Blueberry, Briar Rose & Claret), and 4 Waterlilies (Black Forest, Midnight, Periwinkle, and Plum)

Pattern Packs:
Just Nan's Pearl Orchid
The Drawn Thread's The Treasure Box and Winter Into Spring

Bent Creek: Dance of the Bumblebee, Fox Hollow
Bleu de Chine: Birds
Little House Needleworks: Coffee Menu
The Good Huswife: Sarah's Marking Sampler
Hinzeit: Oak Tree
The Needle's Prayse: The Queen's Sampler (I got 129/1000)
Dimensions: Northern Dignity
TW: Tropical Dream
Elizabeth's Designs: Green Old Gardens
Permin: Sampler 1663, Sampler 1778
Jorinde & Joringel: Derfeine Faden

I got tired just typing that in! DH's card was definitely smoking by the time I was done. There's another store at Orchard Park, but I knew it would've been very dangerous to go visit there.

Ooh, I almost forgot! I also got a 2006 Cross Stitch Calendar on Wednesday!

I'm currently charging the batteries for the camera. I'll post pics as soon as I can :)

Tuesday, November 01, 2005

Celtic Banner

I started this project in January. I am almost done with it. But at the moment, my focus piece is my super secret project. The SSP is progressing rather smoothly, a lot faster than I thought it would. So as soon as that's done, Celtic Banner will become the focus piece. In the meantime, I will try to work on CB for a couple of hours a week. Here is the latest progress pic.

Saturday, October 29, 2005

Yeah baby!

Tonight was bowling night and I just scored 126 in game #2 (we play 3 games). It's my best score ever. I got 2 strikes too. I'm very happy. I started playing with a 6lb ball and tonight I used an 8 lb ball and a 10 lb ball. I have more control over the 8 lb ball, but the 10 does good damage. ;) DH wants to go bowling again tomorrow. I can't wait! Who knew I would get this excited about bowling? I can't believe how much I've improved. My average 2 weeks ago was 70. I only scored 80 something (I think) on the last game, but I broke 100 twice. :)

In stitching news, my super secret project is coming along beautifully! I really love working on it. I can't believe how much I've done already. I can't wait until I can show pics.
I'm going to work a little bit on my poor neglected Celtic Banner tomorrow. I'm almost done with it. I think I've done about 75% of the project. I'll take pics tomorrow.

Saturday, October 22, 2005

What's next?

I already started working on my next project. I absolutely love it. I am having lots of fun and its coming along nicely. I started working on it on Wednesday, October 19th. Unfotunately, this is a secret project so there won't be any progress pics. :( I'm not too happy about that part. I love my progress pics. Hehe. I think I'm going to have to work on another project (maybe a couple of nights a week) just so I have pics to share. :)

In other news, MIL will be visiting us tomorrow. We're also going bowling. Yay! I can't wait. DH and I are on a bowling league and I would really like to improve my game. We've gone to 2 bowling nights already. The 1st night was bad. I got really tired and my hand hurt a lot. The 2nd time was much better. My game was consistent (we play 3 games/night) and nothing hurt. Now its just a matter of getting better and stronger so I can use a heavier ball. A 6lb ball doesn't really do much. I'll be happy if I can bowl with an 8lb ball for the whole night without hurting myself.

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

YAY me!!!

Yay!!!!!! Its finally done! I finished the backstitching last night. The backstitching took forever. I was not able to stitch one bit last week. It was very upseting to be this close to finishing and then not being able to. But here it is! Its finally done! I absolutely love it. :)
I used up 2 skeins of the blue for the sky. If you're stitching this, make sure you have 3 skeins. I was going through my ort jar at the end to finish the sky. I also used up 3 skeins of white. Buy 4 just to be safe. I used DMC B5200 instead of the Anchor white.
I got the chart from Cross Stitch Collection issue #114 (February 2005). There are a couple of errors in the chart. The first one I should have noticed, but I kept on backstitching without bothering to double check with the finished picture.

Obviously the backstitching should be on the edge of the "brick". But silly me didn't think of that until way after I was done stitching that area and frankly, I didn't want to deal with frogging a whole section of backstitching.

The second error in the chart is this area:

The chart in the magazine didn't have the circled area backstitched. It was easy enough to spot.

Now that I'm done, this project will now join its buddy, Mini Cottages 1 in the box. :)

Friday, October 07, 2005

I'm happy dancing

No, I haven't finished Church Window as planned. I'm happy dancing because a friend who I haven't seen on line since March, finally made an appearance last night! I sent her a letter a month ago to ask how she was and she did say that she got it. Life has been very busy for her and she hasn't had time to go on line. She's doing really well and has a new baby! I am so happy for her.

In the mail, I got two RAKs. One was from U9corn Angel. She sent me Dracolair's Dragon Knot Bookmark. Its so pretty. I absolutely love it.
The 2nd one was from M. Over a year ago, I was happily clicking around a cross stitch gallery and found a project with a fox on it. I sent an email to the owner to say that the foxes were pretty and all that. A year later, she emails me and said that she would look for the chart and would happily send it to me. Yay me!

Wednesday, October 05, 2005

Almost there

I really, really wanted to finish this project last weekend. Unfortunately, we were very busy. I stitched for a bit on Saturday, but we had to leave at around 5 to go to Rochester for bowling night. Then Sunday was spent window shopping and hanging out. Anyway, here is the latest pic. I'm hoping that the backstitching won't take too long. I would like to finish everything by Friday night at the latest. My aunt will be arriving on Friday and I doubt if I'll be able to stitch while she's visiting.

Tuesday, September 27, 2005

Another RAK!

I cannot believe it! I keep getting wonderful things in the mail. I love it! Today, I got a Cross My Heart leaflet from Kelly that has this adorable red fox chart in it. I didn't even know this chart existed! What a great surprise.
I feel very special this week with 2 RAKs! My 2 plots turned out well. I really should find another set of "victims".

Monday, September 26, 2005

I'm almost done!

White, white, white. There was so much white. And when I got done with one section of the white, it was blue, blue, blue. Finally, the sky is done (the blue parts at least). Tonight, I will finish the black bits on the windows on the houses on the right side, as well as the moon and the star on the right. I think I have a good shot at finishing this project this week. I really, really want to finish it this week. Why?

Because I start my new job on Monday, Oct. 3!!!! Remember job #3 last Monday? The 2nd interview went so well that they offered me a job. The dot com that had the weird job offer called me on Thursday to say that they were going to revise their original job offer, but I decided to accept Job #3 anyway. The job is closer to home, I liked the hours and the benefits are really good. So there you go.

I absolutely love getting something in the mail (as long as its not a bill). Today, I had a wonderful surprise from Kati. She sent me the chart for Dragon Dreams' Blackwork Dragon. I love it, love it, love it! I have also decided on the floss for it. I will be using Caron Waterlilies Flame. I'm not sure about fabric though. The pic shows Flame with DMC linen. I can't seem to fix the image with Photoshop, but the fabric color is DMC 739. My choices are this fabric or plain ol' white fabric. What do you think?

Wednesday, September 21, 2005

Finally an update!

Wow. I haven't blogged in ages! Here's a re-cap of the past week and a half.

Tuesday, Sept. 13 - I got my hair cut! I love it. I don't have a decent picture of it yet though. I went to Cost Cutters to get it done. Not bad for $10.95 (I had a $2 off coupon) + tip. The last time I had my hair cut was probably a year ago. I was so tired of it and I just had DH chop off the ends. The uneven ends was never noticeable cause I always had my hair up. But with this new haircut, my hair feels sooo much lighter and it's much easier to deal with. I was worried that the stylist may have gone a bit crazy with the razor, but it turned out really good I think.

That afternoon, I had a job interview for a dot com. I left early for the interview. The place was right in the middle of downtown and I had no idea where I was going so I made sure I had plenty of time to spare just in case I got lost. The good news was that I didn't get lost. The bad news was that I didn't know that I had to 1. look for parking and 2. pay for parking. I almost always never carry cash with me. Thank goodness I had some quarters in my purse. So I paid for an hour's worth of parking and went off to the interview. The interview went well. I was excited that it had potential to move to marketing. The guy told me that the job would be 32 hours/week initially and then become 40 hours/week after 2 months. Okay, I can deal with that. If the job was right, I can deal with that. So they said that they would get in touch with me and I left.

Thursday, Sept. 15 - I received a job offer from the dot com. It was nothing like what was discussed in the interview. They offered $xx/year, which sounded really good for a 40 hour week. BUT they wanted me to work 50 hours/week for the first 3 months. Yikes! 10 hour work day, plus 30-45 minutes drive each day... that's way too much. I emailed them with a list of questions/clarifications. I wanted to make sure that I would go back to a normal 40 hour week after the 3 months. I also wanted them to know that I was leaving the next day for vacation. So I waited and waited and waited. No reply.

While waiting for a reply, I started packing up everything we needed for our mini-vacation at Thousand Islands, NY. This was my 3rd trip to the Islands and I was very excited. We left right after dinner and got to the cottage at around 9:30pm.

Friday, Sept. 16 - There are 4 messages on my cellphone from 3 days ago! Ack!!! I never heard the phone ring and the "you have a new message" thingy didn't show up on the screen. Shoot! I got calls from people wanting me to come in for an interview as well as a call from the dot com. So I call the dot com first and get the voice mail. I left a message apologizing for not getting back to them sooner, etc. Then I made appointments with the other companies for interviews on Monday.

We didn't get a chance to go fishing on Friday. We ended up sleeping in and Grandpa and B ended up leaving without us. Oh well. There's always tomorrow.

Saturday, Sept. 17 - We went fishing in the morning and DH caught a big pike and 2 basses. B and Grandpa caught a bass each and I caught 2 perches. How sad. They let me take a picture of all the fish I didn't catch.

That afternoon, we went fishing again and DH caught 2 more fish and B caught 1 more. Grandpa didn't catch anything and neither did I. Oh well. I'll try again next year.

Monday, Sept. 19 - I was busy with 3 interviews. I liked that all three were within 15 minutes driving distance from home. Job #1 sucked! The guy who interviewed me was a jerk. Moving on... Job #2 was very interesting. It's 40% admin asst 60% marketing asst. Its a small, family owned business that's been around since the early 80s. Good pay, good benefits, nice part of town, don't have to pay for parking, 10 min away from home. Job #3 is for a very unique industry. Very unique and very interesting. The job was going to be 50% personal asst 50% marketing asst. There was a relaxed atmosphere in their office and that was the first thing I noticed. I also noticed that there were a lot of young people in this company. I know that having people my age at a job is important. When I got back home from interview #3, I got a call from them saying that they wanted me to come back for a 2nd interview.

Fast forward to today:

The 2nd interview went well. I'm now leaning more towards job#3 now that I know more about the benefits that they offer. Job #2 was going to pay very well, have health and dental, 401K and good vacation. Job #2 though might get lonely as it is a very small company with most of the people working in the field. So if job #3 gives a good offer, I think I will accept.

I still haven't heard from the dot com. Whatever. I'm not worried about it anymore.


Stitchingwise, I've been working diligently on Church Window. I even got to stitch some on Saturday night at the Islands. Here is a progress pic after 5 weeks.

I'm very happy with the progress. I think I have a shot at finishing it at the end of the month. At least I'm hoping. I still have the sky to do.

I got my copy of Just Cross Stitch Christmas Ornaments issue last night. I like a lot of the designs in the magazine. I wonder when I'll be able to stitch any of them?

Monday, September 12, 2005

Church Window After 4 weeks

I am having so much fun with Michael Powell's Church Window. I love all the colors he used. I'm surprised that all the white hasn't made me go crazy yet. I try to mix in with the other colors so its not so bad. I can't wait to finish the houses on the right.


I went shopping this weekend. :) I got issues 32 and 33 of Cross Stitch Gold at Barnes and Noble. We have a member card so I got 10% off. I love discounts! I'm so happy I found a copy of issue 32. I don't think they're supposed to have both out. So far, I have issues 27, 28, 30, 31, 32 and 33. I'm not sure why I skipped #29.

B&N didn't have any copies of Cross Stitch Collection though. So far, I've collected issues 113 to 119 (January to July). I doubt if I can find the August issue in stores. Oh well.

I also went to AC Moore. DMC was on sale at 6 for $1. It wasn't even on the sales flyer! I'm so glad I went there. I was debating whether to go there or to Michaels. So I got some floss I need for a project for DH. I also got 2 plastic storage boxes at $0.96 each. It was a good deal. I should get more next time. I also got this kit from Dimensions Gold.

Its called Dragonfly Scroll. I had a 40% off coupon from Joann and AC Moore honors competitors' coupons so yay for me! I hate paying full retail for my things.

Wednesday, September 07, 2005

Stash, stash, stash!!!

I absolutely love getting things in the mail. Opening the mail box and finding something there that's not a bill always brightens my day. Even when I was younger, I always loved sending and getting letters, postcards and packages. When we lived in Australia, I rode my bike to and from school. I would always go as fast as I could going home so that I would get home before my sister (who took the bus). Whoever got home first got to check the mailbox.

This morning, my mailman dropped off an envelope from Kat. She sent me 2 bobbins of J&P Coats Pastelles, Dragon Dreams' Blackwork Princess, Cross Eyed Kat's Maze, and Monsterbubbles' Yourself. I love my new stash! :)

DH built me new shelves for my little office this weekend. We had a 10% off Home Depot coupon, so off we went on Sunday. It was cheaper to buy 4 shelves (2 for me, 2 for DH), brackets, the wall thingies, and screws and just build everything yourself than it is to buy one of those "furniture in a box". I will have to take pictures of my new office as soon as I get everything clean and organized. I'm thinking of eventually going to a dollar store to get some plastic bins so my things look more neat on the new shelves.

I also my only 2 framed pieces by my window (my other framed pieces are at my parents' house). I will mount a small shelf over the window for all my plushies. I think I'll do that today. The L-brackets need one more coat of beige paint first. Beige L-brackets definitely look better than icky gray L-brackets.

Monday, September 05, 2005

Church Window Week 3

Here is my 3rd progress pic for Michael Powell's Church Window.

I would really like to finish this project this month. I'm about halfway done. I love all the vibrant colors. I can't wait to do all the backstitching and see the whole piece pop.

Friday, September 02, 2005

Blog Facelift

My blog went from boring black to Hello Kitty pink! And it's all Scully's fault. She made me go to Blogskins, Blogrolling, and to Pinkyblinkies. Thank you Scully!

So why the decor? I'm a big Sanrio fan. I absolutely adore Hello Kitty. I currently have a Hello Kitty pen and a cute little Hello Kitty plushy sitting on top of my monitor. I also dressed up my cellphone with Hello Kitty stickers and now DH refuses to bring it to work with him. I also have some Hello Kitty and Chococat stickers.

The picture on the left is Chiyo Mihama from Azumanga Daioh, probably the most adorable anime series ever! I also like the works of Hayao Miyasaki. I've been looking for an Inuyasha blinkie, but I haven't found one yet.

Foxies! I love them. I've stitched several and I have a pile on my to-stitch list.

Coffee! Love it, need it to survive. My favorites include Hawaiian Kona, Gevalia's Signature Blend and Green Mountain's Rainforest Nut. I have several coffee cross stitch charts. I have yet to finish stitching one, but I hope to decorate our kitchen with various coffee designs.

And if you haven't noticed it yet, I love to stitch. I learned to cross stitch when I was 10. We had to do a project for school. I liked it, but not enough to start it as a hobby. When I was in 7th grade, we had to do another cross stitch project. I stitched a simple Celtic inspried sampler. Nothing fancy about it, just green letters with a shamrock. I had so much fun stitching that project and I've been stitching ever since.

That's it for now. Have a great weekend!

Thursday, September 01, 2005

September Goals

Here is my list of September stitching goals:

  • Finish Church Window
  • Work on Wildlife again
  • Organize stitching room/office
  • Stitch an ornie

I think I'll start with a short list for now. :) Who knows what I may end up buying and/or stitching in the next few weeks?


In other news... I sort of rediscovered an old friendship! Yay! It was really nice to talk to J again. We've known each other since... OMG! Since kindergarten. Wow I feel old now. We drifted off in different directions after high school and just recently found each other on line. The power of the internet never ceases to amaze me.

My conversation with J inspired me to reach out to a couple of on line friends who have "disappeared" not-so-recently. I feel so stupid for not doing this sooner. But yesterday, I mailed out two snail-mail letters to my two friends. Nothing crazy. Just short notes to let them both know that I miss them and that I hope they are both okay. I'm keeping my fingers crossed and I hope that I hear from them really soon.

Thank you, Kirsten!

I practically flew downstairs when I saw the mailman walking across our lawn with a big envelope in his hand. I didn't know if it was for me or for T, but I always get excited when we get mail. LOL.

Kirsten totally made my day! She sent me The Best of Teresa Wentzler Christmas Collection from my very long wish/shopping list. I am sooo excited. Must start the Byzantine Ornaments as soon as possible! I doubt if we'll have a tree this year, but I can always decorate our fireplace with the ornies. :)

Thank you, thank you, thank you soooo much Kirsten.

Monday, August 29, 2005

No Church Window Update Today

*taps microphone* Hello? Is this on? Testing one, two, three.

I finally decided to start blogging. It will be a great way to track my stitching progress. I used to write everything down, but then I'd forget where I wrote what down. Now, everything will be in one place. :)

I told myself that I would *try* and work only on Michael Powell's Church Window until it was done. Oops. I worked on a project by Cross Eyed Kat instead. This is called Wanna Trade?

I started it Monday night and finished it on Thursday night, stitching only a few hours each night. The details are really good for something really small. The stitch count is only 37x38.

I didn't really get to stitch after finishing this project. This weekend was spent hanging out. FIL came over on Saturday. That was really fun. We drove around town (saw a park that has a public pool!) and went shopping. That night, we built the hutch for DH's desk and watched the Inuyasha movie. I fell asleep in the middle so I will have to watch it again. Thank you Tivo!Sunday was spent just hanging out. I built the shelving unit for our bathroom and DH built my desk.

I now have my own cozy space. :) I absolutely love it. It needs paint and lots of arranging, but I love it. I will be getting a new bookcase sometime next month so all my cross stitch stuff will have a new home.