Monday, December 28, 2009

Generosity Of A Stitching Angel

On Christmas Eve, a package arrived in my mailbox from Lisa…Who is Lisa? I truly had no idea what was in the box. When I opened it up, I found this:

PS Fans Halloween Exchange
Replacement stitched by: Lisa

A great PS Halloween Pinkeep, some adorable buttons, and some DMC floss. I was so surprised when I read Lisa’s note and learned that when she read about the MIA stitcher on the PS Fans blog she immediately contacted the moderator and offered to step in and stitch an exchange piece for me. I must say that was so thoughtful and such a generous gesture on her part! Although we were in the same exchange, I did not know Lisa nor had I ever visited her blog but she found it in her heart to stitch me a wonderful pinkeep. With all that she had to do during this busy holiday season she still volunteered to “make right” another person’s “wrong” ~ Lisa, you are a stitching angel and I cannot thank you enough. I will treasure your pinkeep; it will be a constant reminder of your selfless generosity.

One of the last exchanges that I mailed out for 2009 was an Ornament to BeckySC. I know how Becky loves snowman so I stitched this design for her:

2009 Ornament Exchange
Stitched For:
Sampler Winter by Marika Belfiori ~ Freebie

I put a musical button inside that, when pressed, plays Frosty the Snowman. I also added a cute silver mitten/snowflake charm to the front.

Now that I have actually put needle to fabric and stitched most of the PS "A" block, I feel like an official member of the PS Alphabet SAL group. With much of this block completed I look forward to stitching the remaining 25 letters!!!

Designer: Prairie Schooler
Design: A*B*C

Wondering what this will look like when completed? Check it out.

Wishing you only good things in the New Year~

Until next time...

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

What's That White Stuff?

My first winter back in Texas and I am welcomed with a wonderful snowfall....

December 2009 Snowfall

This is very unusual for the Houston area and I am not too sure when I will see it again. For me it was a mere "dusting" but for the natives it was reason to close schools early, close shops early, dump 2 bags of sand at the entrance to the bank, and for some a reason to drive down I-10 with the hazard lights on. Like so many others, I left my house with camera in hand to capture the moment. When I am wishing for the whitecap mountains at Okemo in Vermont, I will grab this picture and glance at the "whitecaps" on my house. Yes, we had snow one day and 71 degree temperatures the next!

With all of that snow, I am ready for Christmas. I spent much of the day turning the tree from this:

To this:

Just in time to hang this gorgeous ornament from Pilar:

2009 Year Long PS Exchange ~ round #4
Stitched by: Pilar

The ornament is stitched on very tiny count; it looks like 40ct over two (?) ~ truly perfect stitching and finishing. Pilar inserted dried lavender inside so the ornament smells wonderful, such a nice touch!

Thank you so much Pilar for the beautiful ornament, I shall treasure it.

Here is a sampling of some of the cross stitch ornaments hanging on the tree this year:

Thanks to the old and new visitors that take time to stop by ~ I enjoy and appreciate all of your comments!

Until next time...

Thursday, December 3, 2009

2009 Exchange Finale

The last of my 2009 Exchanges are now officially complete! Here are the three beautiful exchanges that were delivered to my mailbox...

The first is from my very dear friend Paula C. who stitched for me in the Christmas Gifts Between Friends Exchange. I was so excited when I saw her name on the box and very happy when I opened it and found this amazing Prairie Schooler ornament:

2009 Christmas Gifts Between Friends
Designer: Prairie Schooler
Stitched by: Paula C.

Oh my word, there are so many seed beads perfectly stitched along the outer edge! What a fabulous job stitching and finishing this piece ~ Paula, you are a pro and you are always so good about personalizing. Here is a picture of the back (see what I mean about those tiny beads?).

As I sat at the table opening all of the gifts I truly felt like it was Christmas morning. I opened beautifully crochet slippers, a knitted kitchen wash cloth that has a steaming cup of coffee knitted into the design (very cute), a coffee themed dishcloth and some tasty coffee, some nicely scented kitchen soap as well as a small purse size, a handy notebook and notepad, a really neat stitcher’s caddy, and a box of See’s chocolate candy! Not only did Paula send a box of my very favorite candy she had them fill it with my favorite Lemon Truffles. I am nibbling on a truffle right now and I am in heaven!

Stitcher's Caddy

Thank you Paula for this amazing exchange, I love everything that you sent. I will forever cherish the beautiful ornament and look forward to hanging it on the tree this weekend. Most importantly thank you for your friendship I value it more than you know. :)

So, what did I stitch for this exchange?


Have you seen these? How cute is that? I saw the pattern while shopping at the International Quilt Festival this past October. I had never seen this before and I knew immediately that I would be stitching this for Tracy. This is the second time, in only a few short months, that I stitched for Tracy and I must say she is an amazingly appreciative and very sweet woman.

2009 Christmas Gifts Between Friends
Designer: Prairie Grove Peddler
Design: Little Candle Mat- Snowman
Fabric: 30ct Alma
Stitched for: Tracy C.

The next package that I opened came from Suzanne S. who stitched for me in the FTT Ornament Exchange. Honestly, this ornament took my breath away. What a masterpiece this is with flawless stitching and finishing!

2009 FTT Ornament Exchange
Designer: Praiseworthy Stitches
Design: Christmas Poinsettia
Fabric: 36ct Edinburgh cream linen
Threads: GAST
Stitched by: Suzanne

Thank you very much Suzanne for this gorgeous exchange it certainly is a wonderful addition to my handcrafted collection of Christmas ornaments.

So, what did I stitch for this exchange?

2009 FTT Ornament Exchange
Designer: Blackbird Design
Design: Quaker Medallion Strawberry
From: 2006 JCS Christmas Ornament Edition
Stitched for: Margaret

Look familiar? Yes, I recently stitched this same ornament for Tracy C. in the Christmas Ornament Swap (round #2).

The third exchange that I opened was sent by Faye R. and was stitched for the Christmas Ornament Swap round #3. Take a look at this little beauty~

2009 Christmas Ornament Swap #3
Freebie Design from Hearty Craft
Stitched by: Faye R

I absolutely love the design and the stocking finish, it just does not get any cuter than this!

Thank you Faye for this beautiful ornament. I certainly appreciate all of the time that went into stitching on this very tiny count, you did an amazing job. :)

Since I have not yet finished my Christmas Ornament Swap #3 I have no picture to share just yet.

I don't think that I posted pictures of the Fair & Square round #16 exchange that I participated in. My partner for this round was Christine R. (no blog yet) who stitched this wonderful PS design! Thank you again Christine, I love your blocks.

Fair & Square ~ round #16
Designer: Prairie Schooler
Stitched by: Christine R.

This is what I sent to Christine:

Fair & Square ~ round #16
Designer: Shepherd’s Bush
Stitched for: Christine R.

A huge thank you to Becky for organizing the Christmas Gifts Between Friends and Christmas Ornament Swap and to CathyB for organizing the FTT Ornament swap. You both put in a lot of time to ensure that the exchanges are enjoyable and successful...Thank you so much for keeping me happily stitching throughout the year!

I know this post was lengthy, but I had so many wonderful exchange pieces to share with you! Thanks for hanging on till the end and for taking the time to stop by for a visit.

For those of you who have sent me an exchange in 2009 be sure to stop by again and read about a "Give-A-Way" contest just for you.

Until next time...

Saturday, November 21, 2009

She Was Too Busy ?????????

I recently learned from the moderator of the Prairie Schooler Fans, that my partner in the PS Halloween Exchange failed to send me an exchange piece because she was "too busy" ~ I am wondering how busy she must be that she could not even acknowledge or thank me for the exchange that I sent her. Fortunately, I am not too busy to post this:

As one person stated on the Prairie Schooler Fans Board: May you constantly be reminded of your poor behavior each time you look at the exchange piece that I sent you.

I honestly understand that things happen in a person's life and sometimes people are unable to meet an obligation. If you have a legitimate reason (and let's face it "too busy" is not an excuse) please just email the individual and let them know.

A number of people commented on my earlier post regarding MIA Stitchers stating that we should name names...I am naming names in hopes that people think twice about slighting another person and going MIA. For all the trustworthy stitchers and wonderful exchange group moderators, I hope this is of assistance to you ~ be on the lookout.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Two Beautiful Exchanges Received

I am so glad that I signed up for Becky’s Ornament Exchange; it is an ongoing exchange that runs for an entire year. My second ornament arrived from Donna this past Friday and I must say that it certainly made my day! I truly love the design and the finish on this one. I love how Donna tucked some tulle and adorable Christmas lights into the cone shaped ornament!

2009 Ornament Exchange from Donna

Thank you so much Donna, I can hardly wait to hang this beautiful ornament on our Christmas tree.
Here is the ornament that I stitched for Tracy:

2009 Ornament Exchange for Tracy
Designer: BBD
Design: Quaker Medallion Strawberry
From JCS 2006 Ornament Edition

After spending the entire weekend scrapbooking, I was glad to get home and feast my eyes on Cross Stitch. Waiting for me was a large envelope from Kerstin who was my partner in the final round of FTT Seasonal Fall Exchange. I was so excited when I opened the package and found all of this:

Kerstin stitched a fun design on some ginger type fabric then finished it into this great little pillow. She sent me two pieces of neat cross stitch fabric in my favorite fall colors, a large cut of cotton fabric that compliments the cross-stitch fabric perfectly, two skeins of hand dyes threads (such gorgeous colors) and two new patterns for my stash. What a way to finish this year long exchange with a very talented group of women. Thank you so much Kerstin for this amazing exchange, I love everything that you sent and I adore my new decorative pillow.

I must thank Cathy for organizing the FFT Seasonal Exchange and for inviting me into the group. It was one of my favorite exchanges and I feel so blessed to have received beautiful exchanges from four talented, generous and sweet women. Thank you to Kerstin, Brigitte, Moni and Gaby!

Here is the Exchange that I sent to Kerstin:

2009 Seasonal Exchange Fall for Kerstin

I must confess that I stole the finishing idea from Brigitte who sent me this beauty:

2009 Seasonal Exchange Winter from Brigitte

I do believe that I taxed my brain a bit too much this weekend trying to figure out color schemes and page layouts for my scrapbook. I am also feeling a bit sleep deprived so I must end now so that I can rest and maybe stitch a bit.

I will share a Scrapbook page with you before I end:

Have a great week~

Until next time...

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Exchanges: One Down Four To Go

Over the course of three years, I have participated in 80+ exchanges. I have never been late in mailing, and pride myself on always meeting my commitments. Fortunately, those assigned “my name” have been just as responsible. There have only been three individuals (I shall not mention names but shame on them) that failed to honor their commitment and have forever gone MIA. That averages only 1 per year so I cannot complain but I will never understand how people can receive an exchange and not send one.

Here is an exchange that I sent out over three weeks ago but I have yet to hear from the individual, she has not responded to my email, and I have not received her exchange so I must assume that she too will join the ranks of MIA.

Designer: Prairie Schooler
Design: Trick or Treat

It is hard to believe that I only have 4 more exchanges this year! One of those is already packaged up and ready to mail, the other three need to be stitched. Maybe next year I will do as I had planned and not sign up for as many exchanges. Like everyone, I have so many projects that I would like to complete. The WIP basket keeps growing, as does the new stash bin ~ so many projects so little time.

My new neighborhood is large and filled with children so I thought that I would need quite a bit of candy for Halloween. I purchased 12 bags of the Fun Size chocolate bars but only used 6 so I quickly tossed the rest into a flat rate box, taped it up, and mailed it to my son at college. I certainly do not have the willpower to keep all that chocolate around.

Costume creativity was top notch this year. The one that made me laugh was 4 teenage boys standing at my door with only their boxers on and a gold medal around each of their necks. They quickly stated "We are the US Swim Team" ~ I thought that was rather clever. As for this year's cutest trick-or-treaters:

Misha dressed as a clown ~ Lily as a witch

I am heading out this weekend to attend a Scrapbook retreat. I have attended quilt retreats but never a scrapbook one. I just found out that the retreat is being held a mere 26 miles from my house, somewhat close for a weekend get-a-way. I am not much of a scrapbooker and I have very few scrapbooking gadgets. I never intended to add Scrapbooking to my list of hobbies but I am on a mission to create three scrapbooks for family vacations to London, Paris, and Tokyo ~ after that I call it quits!

I shall leave you with this "Wishing Custom"...

Potato Chip

When you have a potato chip that has a bubble in it,

put the whole chip in your mouth and chew exactly

ten times. Make a wish as you swallow. If you

swallow the whole chip at one time, your wish will

come true.

Thanks for visiting!

Until next time...

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Fabulous And Fun Exchange

In 2007 I participated in 24 exchanges, in 2008 I topped off at 28 and my 2009 total (thus far) is 28. That is a total of 80 exchanges and I am SO happy to report that I have finally been blessed with a wonderful piece stitched by Edgar! I have been an admirer of his work for quite some time and secretly wished to one day receive something stitched by his hands. If I saw his name on the list of exchange participants, I would think “oooooh, maybe this time!”

My DH walked in with the mail and handed me a box. You can imagine my excitement when I saw the return address label…Yahoo, my heart skipped a beat! As I rushed to open it I was running my mouth about Edgar and his amazing stitching, I am not sure my DH understood a word that I said. I carefully opened the package and saw this fantastic Pinkeep:

Designer: BBD
Design: Trix or Treat
Stitched By: Edgar

I did not get to gaze at it too long before my DH took it from my hands and, impressed with what he saw, commented that it is quite nice. Edgar select a BBD (one of my favorite) titled Trix or Treat and stitched it on 28ct Birds Of A Feather Sandpiper using WDW and Gentle Art threads.

And look at this fun backing fabric!

Cute huh? Edgar also included the display stand, which was sweet of him.

He packed the box with a bunch of fun, and I mean fun, Halloween treats.

2009 HOE Halloween Exchange from Edgar

I love everything but I especially loved the Lip Pop and Pez dispenser. Not only did they make me laugh they made me wish that I had thought of sending that in my exchange ~ very cute! It would be an understatement to say that I am over the moon with this exchange. I guess you can say that wishes really do come true! Edgar, I cannot thank you enough for the wonderful pinkeep and the many treats; you certainly made my day!

I spent the last two days at the huge quilt show here in Houston viewing beautiful quilts and walking in an out of over 900+ vendor booths. My company has left, the house is quiet, I am exhausted, and I am definitely ready to plop on the couch and stitch for as long as I can keep my eyes open.

Thank you Edgar for the wonderful exchange I am so excited and very grateful. Thank you to all that find time to stop by for a quick read, do come again.

Until next time...

Monday, October 12, 2009

Treats And More Treats

And what a treat it was to open my Halloween exchange from Paula C and find this beautiful Halloween Ornament that Paula stitched:

I truly love it! “Happy Jack” makes me smile; he is so very cute (and perfectly stitched and finished). The design was taken from the 2009 JSC Halloween edition.

The box was packed to the rim with so many wonderful treasures:

I gasp when I saw the box of See’s chocolates…my very favorite. It did not take long for me to gobble that up! I shall save the other edible treats for later. Paula also treated me to some of her very useful scrubbers. These top my list of favorite kitchen gadgets they really do work! My kitchen is now looking more festive with the Halloween dishtowel, orange scrubber and washing cloth. There is also a cute pumpkin pincushion, two fabulous Halloween fat quarters, ribbon, and post it notes. Thank you so much Paula for this amazing exchange it was such a treat and you are such a treasured friend! :)

My Halloween Annalee Doll is the perfect place to display "Happy Jack" ~

Fair & Square round #15 arrived today as well. Bridget stitched this cute square:

Thank you Bridget, your selection was perfect!

Here is the block that I sent to Bridget:

Designer: Prairie Schooler
Design taken from: When Witched Go Riding

I have not posted any pictures of the dogs lately so I shall leave you with these:

Lily (1 year)

Misha (12 years old)

They are both tuckered out from their visit to the vet for annual shots.

Thanks for stopping by and I hope that you have a wonderful week!

Until next time...