Saturday, June 28, 2008

Happy Birthday, Grace

18 years ago, Grace Kathryn entered the world. She has brought joy and laughter to our home. Most importantly, she has trusted in Jesus Christ for her salvation, and truly loves and serves her Lord.

Grace, we are excited about the young woman you have become, and know that God has great things in store for you! Happy Birthday, sweetie.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008


After seating myself in the comfy recliner in the bedroom, I glanced to the right to look out the window, and saw two of these bugs on the screen. Sarah came in and told me that they are the European Chafer Bugs which Phil had told me about several days ago. These lovely critters feed on grass roots. There are insecticides which will kill them, but they must be applied in August or September.

And just when our lawn is finally filling in and becoming more weed free.

It's always something.

Saturday, June 21, 2008

Not Much To Blog About

Yet another week is almost behind us. It's been a busy one, so not much going on in the crafting department. I did finish the needle page for Floral Needleroll and I purchased the wool felt and ribbon I need to finish it.
Phil gave Klaus yet another combing tonight. I caught her in between strokes.
It's been a rainy and chilly week. We've had a lot of thunderstorms (which scare the dog,) the latest of which was tonight. I snapped this picture shortly after 9:00 pm.
I am looking forward to a quieter week, and perhaps finally completing my fabric cutting. Of course, I bought more today, so the pile is not getting any smaller!

Sunday, June 15, 2008

New Charts

During Mary Kathryn's Memorial Day weekend "free postage" sale, I picked up some new charts.
The Gathering Room - Little House Needleworks
Garden Girl - Country Cottage Needleworks
French Country ABCs - JBW
The Sampler Lady - Little House Needleworks
Summer Garden - Country Cottage Needleworks
Sonnenberg - Brightneedle
Rosevine & Willow Tree - Ewe & Eye & Friends
Love and Faithfulness - Little House Needleworks
I bought this kit from a fellow stitcher.

Guess I have more than enough to keep me busy for a long, long time! If only I could become a faster stitcher! (Or make fewer mistakes . . .)

Saturday, June 14, 2008

Dinner, Flowers, and Pets

The girls spent the day at my parent's house, helping by doing chores my mom can't do because of a shoulder problem. Phil and I had intended to have a quiet dinner, but since we didn't sit down to eat until 8:30, we had only 15 minutes before the girls came home. I made "Refreshing Shrimp Salad" from the current issue of Simple and Delicious. I originally thought I'd make Poppy Seed Dressing, but decided that a citrus dressing would be better, which it was. The only problem I had was that the shrimp Sarah bought was raw, so I had to cook and peel it.
We got some nice rain, so it was a good day to get out and clean up the gardens, and plant the rest of the calendula that Sarah grew for me. We discovered that my lavender died, so we pulled that up; it'll be replaced as soon as I can get to the garden center.

Does anyone know what this plant is? It's so rare to find a truly blue flower.
My Rose Campion (Sarah tells me that's the proper name for it - my mom and I always just called them Pinks.
Kelly let me take her picture today (I'm not sure why it's so grainy):
And here is our other kitty, Klaus. Klaus is a she; we adopted her from Phil's cousin. His cousin's children names her Klaus, after the cat in Treasures of the Snow.

What a Little Dye Can Do

I dyed my first piece of fabric on Friday night! As with a lot of pictures, the color isn't exactly right - it is actually a bit deeper in color, more like a dusty rose. The piece I did is 18 count Aida, approximately 12" x 6". I used Rose Pink Rit dye, 1/4 tsp. in 2 liters of hot water. I had saved two of the lovely bath basins they give to hospital patients (see the picture), which proved to be perfect for working in. It just goes to show that it's worth saving things, 'cause eventually, they will come in handy!

Cross Country Stitching

The August 2008 issue of Cross Country Stitching arrived the other day. This is my last issue; I decided not to renew my subscription since I have so many back issues, and because my style is changing. There were a couple of charts I liked:
Birds and Bunnies ABCs
Herbal Tea

I'll probably stitch this one for Sarah
So many charts, not enough time!

Friday, June 13, 2008


On my new camera, there's a setting for taking a picture of yourself. I decided to give it a try; this is the best picture I could get! I had my hair cut on Wednesday afternoon, so this is how it got styled. I usually just wear it in a half pony tail. We'll see how it looks when I do it myself!

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Stitching Progress

Here are some pictures of my progress on Floral Needleroll.

Floral Needleroll - Outside

The fabric color is a bit darker in this picture than in real life.

Close-up of lower section. The fabric color is more like the first picture.

This is the pincushion section.

This will be the needle page. The stitch around the outside is called "Nun's Stitch." It is like the Point de Paris stitch on my sewing machine. It is supposed to keep the fabric from raveling once I cut away the excess in the border.

I am excited that I'm close to being done!

Sunday, June 8, 2008

New "Baby" & More!

As of Saturday afternoon, I am a new mom! Here's a picture of my baby:I was at Sam's Club, and thought I'd check the cameras, conveniently located near the entrance. Since their website had said the camera was only available by mail order, I wasn't hopeful that they'd have it in the store, but there it was!

I made the big mistake of installing the software that came with the camera, which is why this post isn't being written until now. Not only did it take over the computer, but it took me nearly an hour to get pictures from the camera to the computer. Only then did I think to see if Picasa would recognize the camera, which it wouldn't, so I checked the help files and found out that if I uninstalled the Kodak software, Picasa would indeed recognize the camera.

Remember the decorative boxes I mentioned here? Here are some pictures of them.
The top:
One of my stops on Saturday was A.C. Moore. I wanted to get another 5" spring embroidery hoop, as I get tired of moving the same one from one WIP to another. Turns out they plan to rearrange the embroidery aisle (I asked) and a bunch of things were on clearance, including the embroidery hoops, of which I got several at 99 cents each. They also had variegated DMC floss for 17 cents, so I picked up 7 skeins, as well as the two packages of Aida cloth - one is 14 count (the seafoam green) and the other 16 count. These were $1.84 each. I've always wanted to try the green color, so this was a great find.

It's been so very hot, in the 90's. Once again, I am thankful for our central air. One more really hot day, then 87 on Tuesday. After that, the temps will return to the upper 70's and low 80's, and we'll finally be able to open the windows again.

So many things I need to do, but despite feeling better emotionally, I'm still not being very productive. Gotta work on that. Sewing, dyeing cross stitch fabric, washing the kitchen window (have to get the ladder out to do that), planting flowers, planning meals, doing laundry . . . I'd much rather curl up with Callie.

Thursday, June 5, 2008

Where has the week gone? Oh, yeah. Two trips to the hospital - one for Phil's oncologist, and the other for chemo today. (Good news! Phil's doctor has cut his chemo down to once every two weeks, feeling confident that Phil's counts will be down when they come in next week) After both afternoon appointments, we ran errands. On Wednesday, I was able to plant some flowers and do some other garden work. As I turned over the rocks ringing the side garden to pull up the landscape fabric underneath it, this is what I found:Sugar ants! Hundreds of them. Then they started crawling up my arms. And if that wasn't bad enough, some of them bit me! The more rocks I turned over, the more ants I found, so Sarah suggested getting the Raid, which we did. I sprayed and sprayed until the can was empty, and most of the ants were dead. I wanted to change the shape of the garden anyway, so those rocks will not go back into position!

Phil and I went to Goodwill after chemo today as I was looking for a denim skirt to replace the one that I got rid of when I lost weight. I actually found one, and a belt to go with it, since it's just a tad big. I also spotted a large rectangular basket - probably big enough for newspapers - for $2.99, so I picked it up. We can always use baskets for storage.

Tomorrow we're having company for dinner, the first time in what seems like forever. I've planned a simple menu: spaghetti and ready-made (frozen) meatballs, vegetable, green salad, Butter Dips (from an old Betty Crocker cookbook) and dessert, which Sarah will make.

We're entering a heat wave, complete with high humidity and the threat of thunderstorms. We broke down tonight and turned on the air conditioning, and it's comfortable in the house, so we all should sleep well. It was not fun vacuuming in the heat tonight.

I hope to get in some stitching time over the weekend. Or maybe I'll work on sewing the capris and split skirt I cut out last night. Oh, and I should finish cutting out the two shirts that are on the cutting table.

Guess I won't be bored!

Sunday, June 1, 2008

Creative Needle Magazine

Deby wondered where to get a copy of Creative Needle magazine. I got mine at JoAnn Fabrics. You might also find it at one of the craft stores. We have a grocery chain that carries a wide variety of magazines, so that's another possibility. If all else fails, you can order directly from their website - it's the May/June 2008 issue.

I'm off to do some cross stitching!

More From My Aunt

Back in January, I posted a picture of a tablecloth my aunt had cross stitched. This is the card she sent Phil and I for our anniversary.

I apologize for the blurriness of the photo, but I just couldn't get anything better. I plan to turn the cross stitched piece into a pinkeep. (I just peeked and there appears to be enough extra fabric around the outside to do that.) I love my aunt's creativeness: for many years, she crocheted everything she could find a pattern for, and in the past several years, she has taken up counted cross stitch and card making. Keep up the good work!