Sunday, August 30, 2009

Let sleeping dogs lie . . .

I was reading some blogs and was following links from one to the next when I came to this blog: The (other) View from bag end. The author's dog Ollie, wrote this but it could just have well have come from Spud:

1. The hound is not allowed in the house.
2. OK, the hound is allowed in the house, but only in certain rooms.
3. The hound is allowed in all rooms, but has to stay off the furniture.
4. The hound can get on the old furniture only.
5. Fine, the hound is allowed on all the furniture, but is not allowed to sleep with the humans on the bed.
6. OK, the hound is allowed on the bed, but only by invitation.
7. The hound can sleep on the bed whenever he wants, but not under the covers.
8. The hound can sleep under the covers by invitation only.
9. The hound can sleep under the covers every night.
10. Humans must ask permission to sleep under the covers with the hound.

Girly Gothic 2nd update

I am just loving this piece! I have stitched nothing else since last week Sunday. I just can't seem to get enough of it. :) It has been so relaxing to put the stitches in after the terrible workdays I have had. I should really start playing the LOTTO (our version of a lottery), so that I can "retire". Going to work is not fun!

Just look at this one

Isn't she just as beautiful? I am now in two minds - should I go with "Queen of Hearts" like I intended or should I try "The Passing" instead?

What do you think?

New design give-away

Jan has designed her first chart (and it is beautiful!). To celebrate she is having a give-away. Join the fun here. Ending 30 August 2009

EDIT: Congrats to Deb, Ladybug and Kartina.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Girly Gothic

As you have seen by my erratic postings, I am very excited to be one of all the HAED stitching sisters!

Thanks to the wonderful RAK I received, I had a piece of fabric large enough to do this stitch and was able to get started on this cute little girl on Sunday evening. I have tried to stitch on her a little every evening.

I have only stitched some little blodges of colour and can't wait to get to the "good stuff". But progress is progress :)

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Too many HAED's are running through my head

Okay, I have decided on two HAED designs. The one that I just can't seem to forget is "Queen of Hearts". Isn't she just beautiful? Unfortunately I don't have a piece of fabric that is large enough (she is huge!). I will just have to wait a bit before I get to start. I thought I had everything set and then I realized that I didn't take any seams into account, so the fabric is just a few centimeters too small :( I have a few of Rachel Anderson's other patterns too and they are all just WOW. Hopefully I will get to stitch them all.

And then I decided to try a little QS (Quick stitch) pattern by Caron Vinson called "Girly Gothic". I just love this little picture and I will be starting it tonight. Haven't stitched anything since Friday and I am actually feeling a little guilty . . . well some weekends just have to much packed into them!

RAK received

My friend, Leena went through her stash and decided to make some space for her new purchases and wish list. She send all her old Aida fabric to me (she doesn't stitch on it anymore). And off course I am a happy, happy girl :) I am so, so grateful :)
She also included the cutest little scissors (Leena this is just too cute!! And you know I have a thing for scissors.), q-snapes (doing happy dances), needles and even a magnet pattern holder. I just want to try everything out!
Leena is an accomplished stitcher, you will see some of the beautiful work on her blog, The Flying Itches Needle.
Thank you, thank you, thank you, Leena - you are just the sweetest!

Totally Useless SAL (TUSAL)

It's a "new" moon on the other side of the world again, so here is my container. I have started pressing all the orts down or else I won't get more in there. It is a total mixture of lots of projects and I even threw a broken needle in there :)

Thursday, August 20, 2009

HAED designs

I have been drooling over the HEAD patterns that is on the HEAVEN AND EARTH website. If you enjoy looking at their beautiful patterns, you will love the blog Our Friends' HEAD SAL. It is full of the SAL's of the HAED stitchers - amazing! Unfortunately the membership is full at the moment but we can still enjoy the posts :) Maybe one day . . . I am on the waiting list (hie-hie)
I was lucky enough to receive a few patterns from a fellow stitcher who already completed the projects and they are just WOW!! I also downloaded the freebies from the site and now I am trying to decide which ones to do first!! They have so many different colours that I just can't do them all at the same time . . . and I really shouldn't start a new project anyway. Shame on me . . . I am the next victim of "startaris", I think :) But they are just so pretty, how can we resist?

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Midweek update

Just a quick post to show what I have been up to the last few evenings:

This is the before picture . . .

And this is where I am now . . .

A lot of fun so far.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Happy Blogaversary to you!

The Daily Mel is celebrating her 8th blogaversary and is having her "eight chart giveaway"! But that is not all, go ahead and take a look! Ending 27 August 2009.

Congratulations Valerie.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Giving it another try

I procrastinated this whole week - I did not do ANYTHING and that also means that I didn't put even one stitch in. But I don't feel bad about it - I think sometimes you just need a little "lying around time". It was wonderful . . . and I have to admit, I miss watching CSI without anything demanding part of my concentration (note to self: no more stitching while CSI is on!!).

Yesterday the whole day went by in a eye blink - there is just so many blogs to read. But last night I felt like stitching something again (the bug was back) and after fumbling through all my kits, decided to give Cove Haven Inn another try. Remember the terrible time I had a few weeks ago?
This time it went much, much better. It was slow going (and I am slow in even normal stitching circumcises) but I still feel a little satisfaction from what I did manage to do even if it is mostly half cross stitches. Almost all my projects feel like just a whole bunch of confetti stitches and this one is no exception. Even with a lot of imagination, I can't yet see the tree in this little piece but it is only about six blocks along so far. So I might be a little optimistic . . .

Do you guys ever make Fruit Crumble? Via a long detour, reading lots of blogs, I finally came to Dana's blog. She has a (looks like) very easy recipe for a fruit crumble bake. It looks yummy! I think I want to try it in the next few days . . .

Friday, August 14, 2009

Spook-tacular give-away

Dee is having a Halloween give-away. All the details are on her blog, Tangled Up In Sticks and String.

EDIT: Congrats Daisy Girl.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

What a weekend!

We left Cape Town early Thursday morning. I was a bit worried as this would be the furthest Spud has travelled in the car with us and he has been known as a very active little boy! But four hours sitting still would be a challenge for any boy. Things went much better that expected and we arrived in Albertinia around 2:30 in the afternoon. We were lucky not having too much traffic on the road. This is not something that the guys arriving the next day, Friday evening, could say. They were not impressed - the roads were clocked with long weekenders then! Thank goodness we could leave a day early.

This was the view from the balcony, that first evening. It was beautiful and we were lucky to have some wonderful full moon nights. You just feel so much nearer to nature without the city lights and noises. :) And that extra day that we were alone was very precious to me - we had lots of fun just being together.
This is a photo of part of the farm house. We made good use of this balcony - that was our meeting and "being together"-place. And off course a weekend away would be nothing without lots of bbq's (braais in SA lingo!). The men would have bbq'ed for breakfast if they could!

Spud had such fun running up and down the river! He was exhausted every night. :) He imagined being the boss around the farm even growling at big, big farm dogs - I had to rescue the big dogs lots of times by just taking him in my arms and cuddling the stress away. :)

He loves water and had great fun swimming and playing in the river. It was very hot (about 29 degrees Celsius) and it is winter here in Cape Town at the moment. It was a relieve to have the river nearby. When we got home last night we drove right into the rain again.

The farm is a three part operation - one part being an aloe farm.

Another aloe photo. We drove up in the mountains where they "bleed" the aloe leaves and got a bit of a farming lesson - very interesting. The sap of the plants are cooked until it crystallizes before it is shipped to the rest of the world. It tastes terrible!! Luckily it is not for eating . . .
Another Spuddie photo. :) I have too many photos of him already . . . but we could not resist.

I took along some stitching pieces but in the end only worked a few stitches on the Boots Fairy. Here is a "before" and "after" picture.


After this weekend:

And now it is back to work tomorrow . . . oh no!

Monday, August 10, 2009

I'm back and totally exhausted . . .

. . . I think I need a holiday to recover from this holiday! We had a great time (and a few mishaps) but I am much too tired to sound even remotely intelligent right now. I will post about it all tomorrow.

Lori's give-away

Lori is having a celebration for her blogaversary! Congratulations on this milestone, Lori! Visit her blog, Stitchin Times Five and say hi.

EDIT: Congratulations CindyMae.

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

A looooong weekend away

It is 8:30 in the morning and I am sitting in bed, reading blogs! I am soooooo bad . . . I took off a day before hubby so that I could start the washing, do the ironing and start packing everything for our little trip that start tomorrow but nooooooo . . . I am online reading blogs. :) And don't tell anyone, but I am also online searching for a little stash building . . .
Our little trip is not so little anymore. It started with four of us just going away for a weekend and ends up with us being 11 people that is going to drive down to Albertinia (about four hours away) where we are going to invade a farm house that we rented until Monday. The house only sleeps 6, so some of us (with rooftop tents on our 4x4's) will be sleeping outside which is not a problem. We love camping!
The world is such a little place. Hubby phoned the farmer yesterday and it turns out that the farmer went to school with hubby's oldest brother!! The farmer is such a nice guy as he has given permission that our dogs (Spuddie and two of his "cousins") can also come along for a little relaxation. Now it gets even more crazy - since we basically know him now, he has arranged with the hotel in town so that we can all go and watch the rugby on Saturday. That is going to be so much fun as almost the whole gang is rugby-crazy and as you know the Tri-Nations is on at the moment! I think we will be taking over the hotel that afternoon! :)
Hubby also said that the farmer wants to arrange for some kind of farm dinner or something for us - I am sure that will include some strange parts of some or other farm animal that we city slickers are not used to. :)
Don't worry, I will be taking pictures and will post again on Tuesday when we get back. I also hope to get some stitching done - I am still deciding what projects to take with . . . Mmmmmm, choices, choices . . . but I have to get ready and go to the shops quickly to buy some supplies . . . maybe I will be able to sneak in another post this evening or else I will see you all again next week . . .

Bonnie's give away

Happy Birthday Bonnie and also happy blogaversary!! Bonnie is giving away this great magazine - go visit The Stitcher's Abbey.

Ending 29 August 2009.

Congratulations Gaynor.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Cookbook give-away

Leslie is having a cookbook give-away on her blog. Hurry on over and check it out - it is such a fun blog!

EDIT: Congratulations Rebekah!

Sunday, August 2, 2009

The Simple Woman's Daybook

I came upon this site via a long detour tonight (strange how one link can become such a long and very interesting journey). It is something that I will enjoy and hope you will join in the fun. How it works is that Peggy, the hostess, adds a few "conversation starters" on her blog and we can get going. . .

Outside my window... it is dark and black, not even the moon is shining.

I am thinking... that I only have to get through three days before hubby and I will have a few days of relaxing. Isn't it sad how we wish our lives away? I envy those that love their jobs and gets great enjoyment and satisfaction from the 9 to 5 hussle and bussle.

From the learning rooms... comes great silence. I have bought a book about quilting and am eager to learn something new but I have not even read the first few pages. Maybe I should take this book with on our little mini holiday.

I am thankful for... a husband that loves me and a warm doggie body curled up on my legs snoring the hours away.

From the kitchen... nothing is heard. My head is empty "what am I going to make for dinner tomorrow night"?

I am wearing... grey sweat pants and an old yellow sweat shirt.

I am reading... the Death series by JD Robb.

I am hoping...for love and peace and acceptance in my life . . .

I am creating . . . cross stitch projects and dreaming of creating quilts.

Around the house... I want to start making it feel more like a home. At the moment all the furniture are just set down here and there. I want it to feel welcoming and look"lived-in". Money is a bit tight at the moment but I am patient and can take it one step at a time. Everything doesn't need to be finished in one day.

One of my favorite things... are vanilla milkshakes :)

A few plans for the rest of the week... I just need to get through till Wednesday when hubby and I will leave for two days of relaxing - we will be going away for a little camping time far from any other people.

Here is a picture thought I am sharing with you...

Happy scrappy quilt give-away

Wow, this is such a beautiful quilt - go on over to the Marie-Madeline studio-blog to enter. I bought a "First time quilting"-book recently and took out my sewing machine (which was so dusty that he didn't seem white no more). I can't remember ever using the machine yet.

EDIT: The lucky winner is Karen!! I am so jealous . . . :)

Saturday, August 1, 2009

Go Bokke Go!

The second test of the Tri-Nations was played this afternoon. And South Africa won. Again. Yeah, the second victory against New Zealand. :) Yeeahh! Next week it will be Australia but we are confident . . . we will do it again!

I have come to the second day on my rotation table. I have found that one day on a project is not enough for me. I enjoy stitching a few days on a project. No set time, I just go on stitching until I feel like a change.
So I stitched on Kipper in the beginning of the week (first day of my rotation table) and now for two days on the second in line, Boots Fairy. This was the beginning of this project too, so I have only done a bit of her wing so far - lots and lots of confetti stitches and LOTS of color changes. This photo doesn't do it justice and I am sure you will only see the effect when the whole wing is finished. Now it just looks like a mish-mash of colors that do not seem to go together. But have faith . . . I have complete confidence in the talent of the designer and am sure it will come together in the end . . . (I hope . . . ) :)

Another give-away

Happy one year blogaversary, Lynn!

Take a look at the wonderful prizes that Lynn is offering on her blog.

Ending 5 September 2009.

EDIT: Congratulations to all the winners!

Hurry, this give-away is ending soon.

Stitching the Night away is having a give-away on one of their blog. You will have to hurry, it ends today!!

EDIT: Congratulations to Lelia!