Saturday, May 1, 2021

A Bit of a Return to Normalcy....... (593-594)



Greetings.....I know it's been awhile, but time just seems to slip away...and I'm not totally sure how I feel about that.....I'd like it to move quickly so we can get past this Covid craziness, but I'd like it to slow down so I can enjoy every moment to its fullest. I am fully vaccinated and feel things are gradually getting back to normal. I attended my first retreat in well over a year..and managed another weekend at the beach to relax and chill with Rich and my brother and his family. I took on the co-chair position for programs for my Guild and my partner and I are working on some fun programs for the upcoming year. Fingers, toes and eyes are all crossed that we can start to meet in person come September.

Now on to some stitchy first retreat/ class was the second weekend in April with Jackie DuPlessis at Salty Yarns in Ocean City, Md. Jackie taught three classes, but I only took one.....ODE, a piece to honor Jane Austen. Here is a photo of the project:

It comes with a bevy of smalls and that beautiful wooden box. Mr. Miller, who made the boxes, was there and we were able to get him to sign
our personal box. It was so wonderful to be with stitchers again..... though we were small in number, we were BIG with enthusiasm. Now I have to be patient until October, when my next retreat is scheduled. We made a number of mock-ups and practiced stitches in our two day class, but the real work has yet to begin.

I have a couple finishes to share...first is A Petite Royal Sewing Set by Merry Cox. This was a class with the Orange Coast Sampler Guild in California. They allow away stitchers so I was able to attend. Sadly, I wound up with this class conflicting with Jackie's and was unable to Zoom in. The good news is I've had enough classes with Merry that I could figure the finishing out. It is such a sweet, petite piece and I included the initials of my grandmother, who was very petite...weighing only 78 pounds!!! The class included the smalls, the shaker box with a lovely stitched band and a a carrier bag we made from some very cool fabric.

 My other finish was a gift for a friend.....Scrim Busk by Eventide Designs. I shortened the design from the original thinking it would be a great size to store any Scrim rulers she may collect. It's about 4" high.



Now my stitch finishes that are patiently waiting to be FFO'd. April Wordplay is in the bag....I think I've decided how I'm going to finish this series, but am not ready to totally commit yet...will keep you posted.


This is Honeybees and Blooms  by Honeycombs and will eventually be made into a drum. It was purchased as a kit and has all the finishing supplies waiting for me.



I have completed all the stitching on the French Schoolgirl Sewing Bag and Smalls by Needlemade Designs. I have stitched this in honor of my granddaughter, Esther. She asked that I put the word 'Love" in place of "Amities" and I added her initials in the four corners of that section. Otherwise, stitched as suggested. 



  This is my March ornament for the SAL hosted by Carol (Stitching Dreams) on IG. I have not FFO'd it's so tiny, I'm not sure how I want to handle it, but it's awfully cute. I put my hubby, myself and my four grandkids on it. 

 I'm trying to keep up with my SAL's, but am lagging a bit. The Peppermint Purple Blackwork one is at a standstill. I'm two weeks behind on the iStitch Sampler Band, but here are the latest few bands I've done.


I got a ninth block done on Houses of Hawk Run Hollow, so only three more to go.....


And with that, I'm going to end today with some of our luscious flowering plants this spring. It has been a great year for our azaleas.....not so much for allergies.  Hope you're enjoying a slice of spring heaven...without pollen!!!


Thanks for stopping by and your 'twisted threads' of friendship!



Wednesday, March 17, 2021

Happy St. Patrick's Day (590-592)


 A perfect day to announce the lucky winners of my latest drawing--you must have the luck of the Irish with you!!!

The winner of the Hot Cocoa chart is:

The winner of the Shamrock Row chart is:


The winner of the Sweater Weather chart is:

I have all your e-mails and will contact you for your mailing addresses. Thanks for entering and I hope you enjoy your charts.

I'll share a few finishes and WIPs but am trying to keep this short today. I FFO'd three projects since I last posted. First up is the French Bee Etui by Heartsease Sampler Workes. This was designed to fit in an old Whitmans tin...and it did so beautifully.  This was my last start of 2020 and is stitched on 36 ct. Maritime White by Lakeside Linens with silks and Kreinik metallics.

The next FFO is Hot Cocoa (on the right) by Little House Needleworks. This is my March ornament in the #12in21ornamentstitchalong hosted by Carol (Stitching Dreams) on IG. This was stitched on a 30 ct. mystery linen with DMC. I changed the original red to a more Christmas red than what was called for and added a mug charm to the bow.

The deign on the left is from the Prairie Schooler Just Hatched chart. This was stitched on 28 ct. antique white linen with the called for DMC's. I stitched this last year for a class with my Guild that was sadly cancelled due to Covid. Although we did get the kits and instructions , I decided to go another way with it and made a flat finish. The original finishing idea was to mount the stitched piece on a large styrofoam egg and add a backing fabric and shirred fabric, at the joins,  to entirely cover the egg. It was a little too frou frou for me. The lovely ribbon that surrounds my egg was a gift from my dear freind, really makes the piece!


I am continuing on all my SAL's and completed the stitching on March's Wordplay by Brenda Gervais. 

I may have found my finishing idea for this series, but have to play around with it a bit before I dive in.

I had my Irish soda bread with Kerry Gold butter for breakfast and am decked out in my "green". I am a descendant of McNamaras on my Mom's side of the family. Sadly we don't know much about them as my great grandparents, who were immigrants from Ireland,  died in the flu epidemic of 1918 and left my grandfather and three siblings orphaned.  My grandfather, who was 10, was taken in by some neighbors. His two brothers were adopted by a well to do family, and he never knew what happened to his infant sister until she tracked him down many, many years later. I've been thinking about them a lot during this time of Covid and it makes me sad to think what they had to go through. But I do have a fun memory of being at my grandparents house on St. Patricks Day and them getting phone calls from total strangers singing McNamara's Band!

So, get your "green" on .......and thanks for stopping by and your "twisted threads" of friendship!


Okay, so I have to say something about the "Codd" shirt. Codd is my maiden name and my Dad has always told us we were 100% English from his side if the family. Turns out, when we did a DNA test on him, he's 33% Irish!!! So, this is my little joke on him!





Wednesday, March 3, 2021

I'm Back to Do Some Sharing and Strolling (585-589)


  Greetings! I am back from my Covid fog, waiting to get a vaccine...hopefully only one...and want to get on with it....normalcy!!!  Covid really knocked me out for awhile...ran a low grade fever every day for 10 days, lots of coughing and fatigue. The doctors don't really do anything except send you home to take over the counter meds and vitamin supplements. I didn't pick up a needle for over two weeks, but I made up for lost time when I did. Now my hubby, who sweetly shared it with me, had no real issues, except cold-like symptoms for a few days. But I will say, he took very good care of meals, doing laundry, etc..I am a lucky gal!!! I hope you are all well, getting vaccinated and looking to the future! Hang in there! And thanks to Mary for motivating me today to get this post done!!!

Now to get on with the sure to read to the bottom as I'm doing a giveaway of three separate charts.

First up are my finishes to add to my Stitch Stroll...all smalls and/or ornaments. The first two are ones I stitched many moons ago, but recently finished. Home for the Holidays  by Twisted Threads was stitched in 1998 and can be found in the 1998 JCS ornament issue. Wooly Man by Ewe and Eye and Friends was stitched in 2003. The TT ornament was stitched as called for but I substituted a JABCO bird button for the silver bird charm. The E&E&F was a kit using a wool fiber. It was supposed to be stitched on 18 ct linen over two, but I did it over one...not sure what I was thinking at the time, but that was way too thick a thread for over one...but I persevered!! I also left off the buttons on the brim of the hat as I thought it looked good with just the accent color.

I am participating in an ornament SAL on IG, sponsored by Carol from Stitching Dreams. The goal is to stitch and finish one ornament a month. Here are my two for January and February: On the left Is Ravens from Noah's Ark Christmas VI by Plum Street Samplers...I did this for my hubby who is a Baltimore Ravens fan. You can't tell from the photo but it's stitched on 28 ct Straw Gingham, over one. I finished it flat,  added some tiny blue rick rack and a bird  at the top of the hanger---we'll see how long that manages to stay put! :)   And Rudolph by La-D-Da was stitched on 30 ct. Dark Cappucino from R&R, over one. I had added the red highlights in the deer and '&' sign but when my granddaughter saw it she suggested I change the 'o' in Rudolph to red to look like his out came the black 'o' and in went the red. I had the tine frame on hand and it fit perfectly with some red rick rack on the sides.

My final finish is from a class I took recently with the Delaware Valley Historical Sampler Guild. They hosted Linda from Erica Michaels and she gave a class on finishing ideas for strawberries. We got lots of great ideas and she even designed a strawberry for the Guild. I kept my finish rather simple.. a large green button and a pair of JABCO pins that picked up the blue in the design. I did mine on a 40 ct mystery linen, which is darker than the photo shows. I also changed the wool top from green to red.


Now on to a couple stitch finishes that are waiting to be FFO'd. I started the French Bee Etui  by Heartsease Sampler Workes the end of December. It is stitched on 36 ct Maritime White with Belle Soie silk and Kreinik metallics. It will eventually all fit in the sweet Whitman's tin.

 Next are the January and February Word Plays by With Thy Needle and Thread. I've had these for a bit and was motivated to start them as I just love monthly designs...and they don't take long to stitch. I'm on the hunt for a fun way to finish them! They are being stitched on 40 ct Picture This Plus Oaken linen. I have changed out some colors to use hat I have in my stash...not really an issue as there isn't a lot of any one color.

 I  just finished my March ornament for the SAL on IG. It is Hot Cocoa by Little House Needleworks. I won this in a drawing by Vickie at A Stitchers Story and it is too darn cute! Thanks Vickie! Stitched on a 30 ct mystery linen using the called for DMC except for the red. The original color was too 'pink' for a Christmas Vickie may disagree with me. :) I used 498 in place of 3721.

I also managed to squeeze in some pre-stitching for a Merry Cox class I'm taking with the Orange Coast Sampler Guild in April. It will be a Zoom class and I am thrilled to be able to attend. It is a small piece that will go into a lovely tiny shaker box. It was stitched on 32 ct Sand, over one, with GAST Heirloom Gold. I put my grandmother's initials and DOB on it. It's called A Petite Regal Sewing Set  and my grandmother weighed all of 78 lbs., which was a miracle as she had a stash of Hershey bars, Devil squares and Goetz's caramels in her bedside table. That table happened to be a Martha Washington sewing cabinet which she gave to me, along with her bedroom set, when I got married. She decided at the age of 79 she needed a new bedroom set!!!  When she passed I got her 'goodie' tin and it's back in the cabinet...sans goodies!  She was a true lady and never wore a pair of pants her entire life; she lived to be 99 1/2. Her name was Mary Duke Codd , but we called her Gigi. I grew up with her, living with my family, from the age of 5 until I got married and moved out. She was an avid reader and crossword puzzle lover; she didn't drive so I often took her to the library.... I credit her with my love of reading. She passed away on the 21st of March, 1995.  
A funny siblings and I were always blamed when some of Gigi's 'goodies' went missing. Years later, my Dad confessed it was HIM!!!!

I am continuing with my iStitch Band Sampler SAL. This year I've chosen blues with a splash of yellow.

 And I got two more houses done on The Houses of Hawk Run Hollow ( the two on the bottom left). I am not stitching the saying at this time...thinking of using something else as I'm not fond of the morbid nature of this one. 

 Thanks so much for sticking with onto a reward for a few lucky people. I am paying these three charts forward...two were kindly given to me (Hot Cocoa and Shamrock Row)..and the third (Sweater Weather) I bought and downloaded as a pdf--it is NOT a copy. 

 If you'd like a chance at one of these, please leave a comment and put the name of the chart you're interested in in the comment. You can enter for any or all of them, but I will choose a different winner for each. I'll do the drawing on the I wish you the luck of the Irish!!! Please, if you are a no reply blogger and wish to be entered, you need to send me your e-mail address so I can notify you. My e-mail is Otherwise I will wait a week after I post the winners on the 17th and if  I haven't heard from you at that point, I will have to choose another winner.

To close, here is a photo of my bottle tree during one of our ice storms. At least it didn't get bent over/ damaged!!!

 Thanks for stopping by and your "twisted threads" of friendship!


Friday, January 15, 2021

We Have a Winner................


.......and that is Jean!!! 


 There were only four entries, so chances were good for the ladies that entered. Jean, if you would please e-mail me your mailing address I will get Be Merry and Bright  off to you. There is one caveat however. I will be holding the chart for another week or so before I mail as My husband and I both tested positive for Covid a week ago. I will wipe it down real good before I put in the envelope. :)

We are both doing okay--hubby more so than me. I have been extremely fatigued...can't even stitch...and lost my sense of taste and smell. It's been a lazy, hazy week but hopefully am on the upswing. 

So, there is not much to share, and to be honest, I'm not up for it. Please take care  of yourselves and stay healthy...this really isn't any fun!!! Until next time......


Friday, January 1, 2021

Celebrating a New Year and a bit of Stitch Strolling......(578-584)


 Happy New Year one and and all!!! I could wax on forever about the year 2020 but I will suffice it to say "good-bye and good riddance"! Here's to a happier, healthier 2021, albeit with a few more months of minimal sacrifice for the majority of us. Hang in there folks, we will make it!!!

On to some needlework topics......The USPS was, understandably, quite overwhelmed this year and there was some anxiety about whether items would arrive...or not. I still have one gift to a friend floating around in a distribution center somewhere, so won't share the gifts I made until I know all have reached their destination. But, I was thrilled to receive some lovely gifts from stitching friends. First up is Robin who sent three adorable ornaments all which jumped on my tree after arrival. The one on the right is a key painted as a snowman...this one really tickled my fancy! Thank you Robin, I love them all!

This photo shows my gifts from Vickie and Carol. Vickie made the bluebird from an antique quilt  and Carol's ornament is so sweet and  impeccably finished. These are also hanging on my tree with the exception of the quilted magnet, which I have stuck to my rolling metal tray next to my stitching chair. Thanks ladies for your thoughtfulness--it is much appreciated.


One gift I will share was to a dear friend.....Hand and Heart Stitchers Mat by Scattered Seed Samplers. This created a bit of worry as it was mailed across the pond, leaving December 3. It arrived Christmas Eve, safe and sound......a Christmas miracle, perhaps? 

Since this was a relatively low key holiday season, I managed to squeeze in some personal stitching/finishing. To be honest, I kind of liked the absence of the usual holiday frenzy. So, here are some pieces to add, officially,  to my Stroll.

I finished a 6th square on Houses of Hawk Run Hollow (second from left on bottom row) . I stitch right to left, so that is actually house #7.

Next is my finish of the 2020 Blackwork SAL by Peppermnt Purple. I have a lot of banding left, so I'm goingto continue to add the 2021 SAL to this. So far, it's about 38" long!


This is Be Merry and Bright by The Scarlett House...more on this later....stitched over 0ne on 35 ct. Lucky Penny linen from R&R.

Next up is the 2003 Santa from Prairie Schooler. I couldn't believe this was the first of their annual Santa's I have stitched!!! I saw this frame at Michael's with the checkered mat and had to find a design to fit...and get it stitched this year since it has 2020 engraved in it. The PS Santa fit perfectly with a little tweaking.



This fun piece is Rack Stack  by Plum Street Samplers. I did this the beginning of the year and finally got around to finishing it. I painted a wooden box and mounted the stitching on top. Isn't the reindeer charm cute?

This was a quickie I did for a friend's baby's first Christmas. Again a tiny frame from Michael's with December Joy from Twisted Threads. Stitched over one for a perfect fit!



I love how Reindeer Feed Sack by Carriage House Samplings turned out. (I think I'm on a reindeer kick). This hangs on my back door.


Last, but not least, is Merry and Minty, the generous offering from Brenda Gervais, made just in time for Christmas. I finished this on two halves of a wooden box (I took off the hardware) and joined them together with a  ribbon wrapping around the seam. I used beads for my candy canes, but otherwise stitched as called for.

Now, back to Be Merry and Bright..... an internet friend had paid this chart forward to me with the original fabrics and leftover fibers. I am now going to also pay it forward with a drawing. I did not use the fabric or leftover fibers she provided, so they will be included. To enter, please mention you'd like to be included and I will draw a name on January 15th.

Whew...that's it for 2020...I must say I did get a lot accomplished and am so thankful I had this rewarding craft to help get me through this challenging year. I remember at the beginning of lockdowns, stitchers joking "no problem..we've been preparing for this our whole lives"!!! Truer words may never have been spoken for us!!! I got a lot of stash stitching done, while trying to support LNS's. I did tend toward small projects that gave me a sense of accomplishment and that I could finish using items on hand..... I do have to admit to 'jumping for joy' when Hobby Lobby reopened. It has been a lonely 9 1/2 months but I have zoomed with my guilds, been active on FB and IG, and that has helped tremendously to keep connected. 

I truly appreciate all those that take the time to read and comment on my blog. I do try to respond to every comment, but if you are a no-reply blogger, I'm sad that I can't reply to your posts. If you'd like to strike up a conversation, please change that setting or add an e-mail address to your comment. Wishes to all for a happier, healthy New Year!!! May we get back to our retreats/events, meeting in person, hugs and NO masks!

Thanks, as ever, for stopping by and your "twisted threads" of friendship!


 * A little side note...I am starting my 10th year of blogging and finally got photos to be  side by side!!! Not sure how it's happening, but am thrilled...just hope it lasts!!!