Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Last post for 2013.......I think....

Wow!  Where has this year gone to????  I don't know but it's hard to believe that it is now December 31 and this could be my last post for this year.  It's only 4:50pm right now so I still have this evening to still post something.....if I get a chance!

I am going to try and finish up a small ornament that I had started just 2 days ago.  I had wanted to get 3 small finishes done before tonight but I will be happy to get this one done and HOPEFULLY (fingers crossed) another small ornament finished tonight.

I am stitching on Threadwork Primitives NOEL.  I just pulled some 36ct Sassy fabric and cut it to size for this ornament and changed the red color to a different color.  I will hopefully be able to share this finish tonight or sometime tomorrow.

This year has been a wonderful one for me......like every year.  My husband made it home from a 6month deployment in time for our 21year anniversary and then shortly there after my daughter flew home for Christmas as well.  Thankfully our son was here to help me while my husband was deployed and daughter was off to college.  He helped me with cleaning the house, chores and cooking meals.  Secretly I'm just training him to be able to live on his own without really coming out to tell him, but he really was a great help those nights when my MS had me very fatigued and I didn't feel like cooking.  But he did it for me.  I would have been just as happy to eat a bowl of cereal on those nights.

As I said, I'm off to finish up a small ornament.  I have my JN project already pulled out to get started on tomorrow.  Yes....it's a little Whimzi ornament!!!  You can check out Zeb's Just Nan SAL here.  You can see Zeb's blog Keep Calm and Cross Stitch.  The 2nd link shows how she's pulled her JN charts out.  I need to take a picture of all my binders tomorrow to share with you as well.  I keep telling myself that this will help me stay focused on small JN projects in between those huge SALs that I like to do as well.  Plus.....it gets my JN stash stitched up!!! 

I have soooo much that I want to cross stitch this coming year but there are a couple of old UFOs that I REALLY want to finish this coming year so I can get them framed and hanging on my walls.  I will let you know when I get them done.  Until later.....or tomorrow.......HAPPY STITCHING!

Saturday, December 28, 2013

Samplers Not Forgotten Chart WINNER!!!!

YEAHHHH!!!!  I see that I've reached 100 followers!!!!!  I had the contest to help Kimberly's new cross stitch design company, Samplers Not Forgotten, be spread around the cross stitching world and what better way to do that than on my blog and offering a contest!!!

I have pulled a name out and the winner is:  Debbie of Debbie's Cross Stitch!  I have included a link for you to go see her blog as well.  So Debbie, if you will be so kind and email me and tell me which chart you would like to have, I will get it and send it right out to you!

Thank you to everyone who entered, posted my contest to your blog and helping me spread the word about Samplers Not Forgotten!!!

Happy Stitching Everyone!

Wednesday, December 25, 2013


This morning we all slept in a little bit but did get up to open up presents together and record our opening the presents and taking lots of pictures.  We received many wonderful and fun gifts from family and friends!  And as usual.....we had to sample some of the chocolates that we received this morning as gifts.  It's the only day of the year that I let my kids eat candy for breakfast because I know I don't let them eat a lot of the candy.  But I feel soooo spoiled by my family and friends.  I received LOTS of wonderful gifts!! 

Here is my final gifts from my Stitcher's Garden Advent partner.  I had one present left that was wrapped like the last 24 presents so I opened it first.  It was a Christmas notepad which I just LOVE these for making my grocery lists!

My second gift from Linda, my Advent partner, was a package of overdyed fabric that had 2 pieces in there, some loose hanks of HDF silks that I will need to wind onto bobbins as I can just see myself getting it all knotted up and tangled, 5 mini's of HDF silk, a patriotic felt square which I had never seen before, and  LHN Snow White chart!!!  I have the perfect green Sassy fabric to stitch this on with some white silk!!!  I love all my gifts!!!

So now.....my dilemma is what project do I want to start today or do I want to just continue stitching on something that I've already started??!!!  Hmmmm but what fun would that be if I didn't start a new project today because my kids and husband got new movies for Christmas and I stitch while I watch movies.

We all got lots of wonderful gifts as I said, but the best present for me was having us all here together as a family!!!  Family is sooooo important! 


Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Advent Day 24.....

Today I opened my Stitcher's Garden Advent gift and I got a beautiful new ornament along with some Sassy's 25ct Desert Sandstorm Lugana fabric!  I love using Sassy's fabrics!!!  I think this 25ct will be great for some ornaments next year!  Linda also cross stitched me an ornament from this year's JCS Ornament magazine and it was included in today's gift with the lugana.

I woke up really early today so I decided to make great use of  my time this morning since I could not sleep.  I didn't want to wake the rest of the family by starting some baking this morning so I just paid some bills and updated the checkbook.....you know those quiet things that you can do early in the morning.  I went to print off my daily iStitch Advent SAL and oh no!  I could not get logged onto yahoo.  I don't know what was happening but it was really making me irritated as I REALLY wanted to xstitch this morning in the quietness.  So after a while, I finally managed to get logged into yahoo and my Day 24 printed off.  So here is my final part of this wonderful iStitch Advent SAL!!!


Thank you for following me along this SAL!  You can see other charts by iStitch Designs here.

Now I'm off to do that baking that I need to do so I can xstitch the rest of the day until it is time to leave tonight for our Christmas Eve service at our Air Force chapel.

Happy Stitching!

Monday, December 23, 2013

Advent Day 23

Today my Stitcher's Garden present was a small kit called Cottage Magnet Kit.  I love the house as it reminds me of the cottages I saw when I visited my best friend Karen in England.

I just finished stitching the iStitch Advent Day 23 just a few minutes ago.  I did stitch Rhodes Hearts on each side of the 2013.  I just LOVE to stitch Rhodes Heart.  They are one of my favorite specialty stitches.   Then I almost stitched the 2013 in green just to add a little more color but decided against it.  I can always go back and rip out the white and stitch it in green later on if I decide it needs more color at the end. 

Now I'm off to stitch for the remaining evening after I check email and few blogs. 

Happy Stitching!

The Victorian Motto Sampler Shoppee contest!!!

Oh My!  Did I stumble onto a wonderful blog and website!!!  The Victorian Motto Sampler Shoppe is having a contest to win 25 skeins of her 1795 Sampler Collection floss.  But as always, there are rules to winning it.  You can find out more about the contest here at The Victorian Motto Sampler Shoppe.  Wouldn't that be a wonderful gift to receive?  I've never heard of her floss or blog but I'm soooo happy that I stumbled onto it!

Happy Stitching!

Sunday, December 22, 2013

Advent Day 22.....

Today I opened up a fun gift from my Stitcher's Garden Advent exchange.  I got a  Chrismas Word Search!  I've never seen these before and I love to do these on occasion when I'm needing a no brainer kind of day!  I think they are fun.  I also received some much needed needle threaders as I have some scissors that do not have them.

On today's iStitch Advent SAL, we got to stitch in the word ADVENT!  I debated whether to stitch it in red or green but went with the white like it was charted.  I did make the "A" in Advent a little different than what was charted.  I am enjoying these little snippets each day as I know when Christmas comes, I will have a completed project!!!

Here are a few more pictures from the Attic's Sampler Sunday on Dec 15.  After seeing this little JN Gingerbread Mouse released again this year, I HAVE to get mine stitched up.  I have the JN Gingerbread Jingle Mouse almost complete for this year.  I just have to add the beads and get him finished.  And seeing this one done makes me more motivated to getting Jingle mouse done!!!

Here is the Attic's Sampler of the Month.  This is a picture of the "original" that was brought in to show us.  It is just exquisite!!!

Happy Stitching!

Advent Calender Blog Hop Day 22.....

Welcome to Day 22 of the Advent Blog Hop hosted by Jo of Serendipitous Stitching,

When I received notice that I was included in the Advent Calender Hop, I thought and thought what ornament am I going to include???  I had stitched ornaments for my friends, family and for my husband and kids this year.  My husband and kids ornaments are already wrapped and under the tree but oh no.....I had forgotten to stitch one for myself.  So I pull out my Just Nan Whimzi's charts, a whimzi frame, fabric and DMC threads and got to work immediately.  I chose an ornament from JN Christmas Wishes chart and how appropriate since I am wanting to send Christmas Wishes out to Jo's Advent Blog followers and my followers as well.  This ornament stitched up soooo quickly and I had fun stitching it because I knew it was for specific purpose......Jo's Advent Calender Blog Hop Day 22.  Here is my JN Christmas Wishes ornament.

I love Just Nan whimzi's and one year I did her Twelve Days of Christmas.  I have a small tree that I display them all on.

Our tradition for our Christmas meal growing up was always ham.  I think that is why I love it so much!  I have carried this tradition on with my family as well.  Our Christmas meal is always ham.....no matter what.......mashed potatoes, green beans, (deviled eggs sometimes), and brown and serve rolls.  Our dessert would always change in my family growing up but I started a new tradition when my children were really small.  My mom gave me a Wilton tree cake pan to use for decorated cakes.  My children decided one year that we should make a cake and it would be a Happy Birthday Jesus birthday cake.  So since then, we've always made a tree cake and it was the Happy Birthday Jesus birthday cake.  My children loved the fact that they got to "decorate the birthday tree cake" any way they wanted.  We even include candles and sing Happy Birthday on Christmas Day.  I unfortunately don't have a current picture of any our past cakes because the pictures are all on the old computer that died this past June.  So now that my children are ages 18 and 13, they still want to have the Happy Birthday Jesus birthday cake. 

The cake that I make is not from a box either.  It is Hershey's Deep Dark Chocolate Cake, and I ice it with buttercream icing.  We put food coloring in to make the icing green like a tree and they decorate it with candies such as Skittles, M&Ms and different kinds of sprinkles. 

Here is the recipe for both the chocolate cake and buttercream icing if you want to make it.

Hershey's Deep Dark Chocolate Cake
1 3/4c unsifted all purpose flour                           1 tsp salt
2 cups sugar                                                          2 eggs
3/4 cup Hershey's Cocoa                                       1 cup milk
1 1/2 tsps baking soda                                           1/2c vegetable oil
1 1/2 tsps baking powder                                       2 tsps. vanilla
                                                                               1 cup boiling water

Combine dry ingredients in large mixer bowl.  Add eggs, milk, oil and vanilla.  Beat 2 minutes at medium speed.  Stir in boiling water (batter will be thin).  Pour into greased and floured
13"x9"x2" pan.  (I use the Wilton tree pan and use Crisco shortening and then flour the pan to keep it from sticking.)  Bake at 350 degrees for 35 to 40min (or whatever time your decorator cake pan suggests listed time for baking) or until cake tester inserted comes out clean.  Let cool and then frost.

Wilton's Buttercream Icing recipe
1/2 tsp Wilton Butter Flavoring
1/2 tsp clear vanilla flavoring
2 1/2 tbsp. water
1 cup of shortening (I use the Crisco sticks but not the Crisco butter sticks)
1 tbsp. Wilton Mereinge Powder
1 pound powdered sugar sifted

1.  Mix powdered sugar and mereinge powder together in medium bowl.
2.  Cream shortening, flavorings, and water together in large bowl.
3.  Gradually add dry ingredients until all have mixed thoroughly in large bowl.
4.  Blend additional minute until creamy.  (Additional water may be added to make it creamy but only tiny bit at a time.)

Since my daughter was off to college this year and my husband had been deployed for 6 month, I knew all the Christmas decorating would be left up to me and our son.  So instead of putting up 2 trees this year, I just decided to only put up the smaller 6 1/2foot tree and put all the hand made ornaments on it as I do every year.  The 8" tree just wasn't going to get put up this year.  I decided simplicity was this years theme for decorating since I had 2 less people to help decorate.  But that is ok.  Sometimes we just need simplicity in our lives.  But.....I also knew I wanted it all decorated by the time both my husband arrived back home from his deployment and my daughter from college.  Yes....both were surprised and glad that they did not have to come home to do that this year.  LOL  I just had to laugh because I kept it a secret from both of them as a surprise and boy were they surprised.  Here is what our tree looks like this year.  I think I did a pretty good job decorating it.  My son did help me with the lights and the garland!!!  This is the first tree my husband and I got when we were first married 21years ago.

Now.....to just enjoy our time being all back together as a family! We will go to a Christmas Eve Service at our Air Force Chapel this coming Tuesday night.  When we get home, the kids have started a new tradition in the past several years of choosing one present from under the tree to open.  I had never done this growing up as a child but my husband had and once our kids found out, now they want to continue that tradition as well. 

I hope you and your family have a very MERRY CHRISTMAS! 

Saturday, December 21, 2013

Advent Day 21.....

Today I opened something totally unexpected from my Stitcher's Garden advent partner.  She sent me the Puffin & Company Thread Separator.  I don't have one of these and it wasn't even on my wish list but it looks really fun to use.  I also received some 25ct Peach Lugana fabric!!!

Then I just finished stitching my iStitch Advent SAL just now.  I love how delicate it is looking and today's specialty stitch was another satin stitch below the stitching.  I used 2 strands for the satin stitching.

We had a fun family day today.  We went to see the movie Frozen and then lunch afterwards.  It is a cute movie and a definite to buy when it comes out on DVD.  Then I had errands to run afterwards and pick up 1 last gift.

Here are some other pictures I took while at Sampler Sunday.  I am wanting to start stitching this With Thy Needle and Thread Christmas at Hollyberry Farm.  I have it all kitted up and ready to start.  I'm thinking Christmas Day would be a great time to do that.  Then there are other picturs of other
finishes that were brought to share.

Happy Stitching!

Friday, December 20, 2013

Advent Day 20......

Ooooo today I opened my Stitcher's Garden Advent gift and could not even guess what might be inside.  It was really hard and square.  I opened it to find this wonderful trivet to cross stitch a hummingbird for the middle.  I just love hummingbirds!!!  Isn't it just beautiful!!! I love the flowers on this design too!

I just finished stitching up my iStitch Advent SAL Day 20 as well.  I had to go back and refer to the past sheets to make sure that I used 2 strands for the Satin Stitch on the previous bands.  I wanted to do the same for this one and I was right.  I used 2 strands for the satin stitching. 

If you are wondering, I did stitch red French Knots on the previous band.  I don't think I noted it on the Day 19 post.

Here are some pictures from our Sampler Sunday this past Sunday at the Attic.  These are in no particular order.

I will have more over the next few days. 
Happy Stitching!

Thursday, December 19, 2013

Advent Day 19....

Today I opened Stitcher's Garden present Day 19 that had a package of Mary Engelbrit blank notecards and some beautiful Christmas fabric that has words written all over it!!!  I just love fabrics with words on them and of course.....I love notecards/stationery!!  I think the little dog is sooo cute!

I just finished stitching my iStitch Advent Day 19 portion!  I know I've said this before but I am just enjoying this SAL soooo much!  It is sooo delicate looking!!!  Today is Carol of iStitch Designs birthday!!!!  HAPPY BIRTHDAY my dear friend Carol!!!  I hope you had a wonderful fun filled day of stitching!!!

I apologize for not ironing it once again.  I'm off to enjoy a family movie night tonight.
Happy Stitching!

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Advent Day 18

Today I opened a box from my Stitcher's Garden Advent exchange.  It was heavy and I could not guess what might be inside.  So I thought today was a great day to open it.  I opened it and found a nice wonderful smelling Cranberry Vanilla bath soap.

Now for today's iStitch Advent SAL part is a continuation of yesterday's band.  It didn't take me that long to stitch it in and I've already stitched the dividing band 17 so I really got it stitched quickly.  BE SURE TO WATCH though......Carol sent out an amended chart as the original had an extra stitch on the graph.  Hopefully you saw her amended email containing the corrected chart before you started stitching.

Now to share a very special picture with you.  As I had mentioned briefly before, my husband is home from a 6 month deployment and this past Saturday, my daughter flew home to AZ from college.  Here is the whole family and Daniel beat me to Grace when she got off the plane.  But he missed his sister really bad so I let him hug her first!

Daniel and Grace

Ted, Grace and Daniel

Mom and Grace
 Daniel and Grace

No more stitchy pictures for now.  I hope to have some soon.
Happy Stitching!!!

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Advent Day 17......

Today I opened up another wonderful Stitcher's Garden Advent gift.  It had some Christmas fabric that I can use for LOTS of things and a set of Christmas(y) blank notecards.  I love stationery and pens/pencils.  Here is today's gifts.

I did manage to get today's iStitch Advent SAL almost finished while waiting to pick up kids after school.  I've had a busy morning getting packages mailed and a wonderful lunch with my husband.

Here are the last of the ornaments from our Attic Kris Kringle last Saturday night.  There are about 5 or 6 ornaments that I missed photographing.


Happy Stitching!

Monday, December 16, 2013

Advent Day 16

Today I chose from my Stitcher's Garden Advent box a gift that was bumpy feeling.  I opened it up and found these adorable little wreaths to embellish my xstitching ornaments.  Well.....that's how I plan on using them.  Also included in my package as another small stitched ornament that I get to hang on my tree!!!!  WOOHOO!!!

Here is my iStitch Advent SAL Day 16 part!!!  I stitched almost all of it while I had taken my daughter to her dental appointment this a.m.  What did I do but forget to take my scissors.  Oh well.  I managed and almost finished it there in the waiting room.  But then she and I had a wonderful mommy/daughter day out shopping and looking.  We only went to a few stores of her choice.

Here are some of the ornaments from our Kris Kringle Exchange at the Attic last Saturday.  We have some very talented stitchers.  These are in no particular order.  I tried to photograph most all of them but I think I missed 5 of the ornaments so be sure to watch The Attic's newsletter.  I am only going to put up a few each day.  I posted my ornament last Saturday night.

front of this ornament

back of this ornament

I actually stitched this last ornament and gave it as a present this year.  It was such a fun project to stitch.  That is all for today.

Happy Stitching!