I don't have fireflies in my garden - which is a shame... only cats, bees, a dog and the odd dragonfly!! So please settle down with a cuppa, put your feet up and enjoy!

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Totally Useless SAL Update - New Moon 27 September 2011

Ok, now this is not funny.... where has the last month gone?  It doesn't seem that long ago since I did my last ORT report.  If time keeps slipping away this quickly it is going to be Christmas before I know it and I haven't even thought about Christmas stitching.....

So here we are again.... another ORT report.  As you have read in previous posts I haven't done a lot of stitching so far this month..... but I did have a finish -yippee!

This month's photo is taken in the craft room where this darling dragon lives overseeing all the crafty things that go on in there - mostly Hubby's quilting journeys!  I do my stitching in the family room at the kitchen table.... I know I should be using the craft room - there is a telly in there with Foxtel but for some reason I always park myself at the kitchen table when I stitch.

(Speaking of Foxtel, for those of us that watch "EastEnders" on UKTV David Essex has arrived!  I read ages ago that he was joining the cast of EastEnders and last night's episode ended with the man himself.  Can't wait for tonight's episode - I will be glued to the telly for the duration!)

Sorry, I digress (again)..... now to the ORT report:

September's stitching was mainly the "Cheerful Notes" quilt square and the pink of the kitty card that I started a couple of days ago.  The thin black ORT's on the top of the jar are from hubby's trousers where I had to re-stitch his hem the other night.  All ORT's are welcome in my jar!!!

TUSAL Update - New Moon 27 September 2011
Dragon and the ORT's
So that's it for this ORT report.  For more info on the TUSAL pop over to Daffycat's blog.

Til the next new moon on 26th October 2011, happy stitching and may your collection of ORT's keep growing!

New Moons - 2011
26 October
25 November
24 December

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

You can't stop the music!

No, this post is not about the Village People's movie... oh that was bad.....  This post is all about my latest finish for Quilts 4 Kids.

The design that I picked to stitch this time is actually called "Cheerful Notes" and in the end it has turned out to be a cheerful little quilt square. 

Kaitlyn M's theme is "Music and Dance" and when I saw this design I thought it was the perfect one for her.  I hope that Kaitlyn will like it when it is finally added to her quilt.

"Cheerful Notes"
Gloria and Pat Design
Stitched for Quilts 4 Kids - Kaitlyn M
The stitching took me slightly longer to do than I had planned due to little old me succumbing to the dreaded lurgy and not feeling like stitching for a couple of weeks.  But that is hopefully all long gone now and stitching mode is back in full swing!

Now that I have finished my last Quilts 4 Kids quilt square for the time being what I am going to do next....

Well, I have 3 November birthday cards to stitch for the Craftbubble "Crazy for Kitties" birthday exchange and also I have signed up to do the Margaret Sherry Bloggers SAL #2 also due in November; I also have to finish SAL #1 (hanging my head in shame...) and finally the "Crazy for Kitties" group are possibly going to be doing another Christmas exchange which I will be joining again if it goes ahead.  So I have lots of nice little bits and pieces to keep me amused for the next couple of months.

My current stitching is the first of the birthday cards.  I found these cute little black and white kittens in "Cross Stitch Collection" Issue 198.  There are four designs to stitch and it was a hard choice, but in the end I have chosen the one sitting with the watering can.  I may do another one as well.... who knows!

Cross Stitch Collection, Issue 198
Well lovely folks, that is it for now.... I must run off and take a photo of my ORT's jar as I have just realised today is the new moon!

See you all again real soon!  Til then, happy stitching!

Monday, September 26, 2011

Giveaways Galore!

Hi there!  How is everyone on this lovely Monday?  Hope you are all refreshed after a lovely weekend of stitching or relaxing.  Isn't it amazing how the weekends just seem to fly by - one minute it is Friday and I am enjoying my day off and then in the blink of an eye it is Sunday night and I am preparing this little old brain for work on Monday morning.

I do have a stitching finish and new start for you - but haven't got the pictures sorted out yet - so that will be for another post tomorrow....

So today's post is all about some lovely giveaways that I have discovered while blog stalking this lunchtime.  Details are below:

Giveaway Number 1:
Barbara at To Stitch or Not to Stitch is celebrating Halloween with a giveaway. Barbara has some lovely Halloween inspired stitching gifts and candy - waxed and real!  The waxed is a candle smelling of sugar cookies - yummo....  This giveaway runs from Sunday 25th September to Friday 30th September and Barbara will draw the winner on Saturday morning.

To Stitch or Not to Stitch Halloween Giveaway (Update: Giveaway won by Blueladie - Cathryn's Place)

Giveaway Number 2:
Debbie at Debbie's Cross Stitch is celebrating a year of Blogging with a giveaway.  Debbie's giveaway is a $10 voucher to spend at 1-2-3 Stitch.  This giveaway runs from Sunday 25th September to noon PST Wednesday 28th September.

Debbie's Cross Stitch Blogoversary Giveaway  (Update: Giveaway won by Sharine - Charbella Stitching)

Giveaway Number 3:
Cyndy at Crafty Stitchers is having another giveaway.  The prize is a gorgeous Halloween Raggedy Bagholder.  This giveaway runs from Saturday 24th September to Saturday 1st October, with the winner being announced on Sunday 2nd October.

Crafty Stitchers Halloween Raggedy Giveaway (Update: Giveaway won by Tam - "Scentfully" Country Gal Creations)

So hurry on over and see all these gorgeous giveaways!  Good luck everyone!

Til next time happy stitching

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Life is like a box of chocolates....

I'm back... in the land of the living that is!  Thank you all for your lovely comments on my last post when I told you that I was a wee bit sick....

Well, I was sick alright!  I had tonsillitis, headaches and joint pain, and generally felt very under the weather.  After a week of antibiotics, today is the first day that I have woken up without a sore throat and hopefully tonight I won't end up with sore shoulders and wrist joint pain again.  I have hardly done any stitching on "Cheerful Notes" - last week I just felt too ill to sit too long and stitch and then with the pain in my shoulders and wrists still hanging around in the evenings I haven't been able to do much at all this week.

Still positive thoughts - it's Wednesday today, which means after tomorrow I have 3 days off again and I will hopefully be back into a major stitching catch-up zone!!!  Stay tuned.....

I did have something happen on Friday that brighten me up - there was a package in the mail from the lovely Nia in Portugal.

A few weeks ago I entered and won Nia's blog giveaway and the prize was a lovely box filled with crafty goodies.  They are packed so sweetly in a lovely chocolate box.... just look at these cute cupcakes full of craft candy!

Candy and Postcards from Nia
Layer 1 - pink candy
Layer 2 - blue candy
Getting the "Royal Felix" seal of approval.
Oscar was on the cupboard as well
but wouldn't stand still long enough to get in the photo!
Nia also sent me a couple of postcards from Portugal... and one of the postcards was about the legend of the "Cock of Barcelos".  This postcard really made me smile as we have one!  I have admired the little roosters from afar for a long time, and then a few months ago the local newsagency/gift shop got some in - so I bought one!
Just look at him in all his glory next to the postcard from Nia
Well fellow bloggers, that's it from me on a wet Wednesday in Perth.

Til next time happy stitching

Monday, September 12, 2011

Monday's Stitching Update

Hello fellow bloggers....  I hope that this post finds you all safe and sound around the world.  Over the last few weeks there has been so much going on with hurricanes and earthquakes it makes you wonder what is happening to our lovely planet.

Today I am at home with a revolting sore throat and headache... but I am not getting a cold or the flu... ok, bugs you heard that so go away!  So far this winter I have managed to avoid all the dreaded flu bugs that have been going around and I do not intend to succumb now!!

The bonus of being home today though is that I am managing to finally catch up on my blog reading....  I can't believe how busy all these very clever crafty people have been since I last went wandering in blogland.  I really must go for a wander more often!  I apologise to everyone for my lack of wandering, but unfortunately the hours in the day just don't seem long enough to do everything I want to do.... Reading some of the posts on the blogs that I follow it seems to me that most of us are in the same situation.

I do have a small stitching update for you.  Over the last couple of weeks I have been slowly (and I mean slowly!) stitching on the latest quilt square for "Quilts 4 Kids".  This square is a "Gloria and Pat" design called "Cheerful Notes".  It is a really nice design to stitch now that I have got the hang of all the quarter stitches in it!  At first I was doing half stitches, but when I looked at the coloured print of the design I realised that they would be better off being quarter stitches as they are supposed to represent lines or strings on the instruments. 

Below is where I was up to as of last night.  I am planning on getting a few hours in stitchng this afternoon so will give you all another update soon.

"Cheerful Notes" - design by Gloria and Pat
Quilts 4 Kids
Speaking of updates...

This is an update of a different kind.  When I did my TUSAL post a couple of weeks ago I took the photo outside in the back garden with the Nasturiums.
Nasturtiums 2 weeks ago
 Over the last week heaps of flowers have appeared and now the flowing patch looks like this....

Nasturims today!
Before I go, I must say thank you to all the wonderful people who comment on my posts.  I really appreciate you all taking the time to visit and read my blog and to post a comment.  I do try to respond to everyone's comments but unfortunately some of you have a "noreply-comment" which simply means that you don't have an email address in your profile.  If you would like a reply to your comment you can add your email address to your profile quite simply - you don't need to use your everyday email address as you can set up a gmail account just for blogging...  In the meantime, if I can't reply to you in person, I do thank you for stopping by and leaving your lovely comments on my blog.
Well that's it for this very quick update.  I will catch you all again soon...

Til next time, happy stitching!

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Fresh veg from the garden.....

I love fresh veg from the garden!  It is such a treat to be able to go outside and pick some lettuce or spinach and eat it within minutes of picking it - the taste is so much better than shop bought!  In fact the difference is that there is a taste as most of the time shop bought produce has lost it's taste while it's been in cold storage for weeks and months on end....

The other night I picked some silverbeet, spinach and lettuce for dinner and lunch the following day.  I put it in the sink in some water to rinse off any dirt, etc... and low and behold when I came back what did I find looking up at me???
Just goes to show....
all creatures great and small love fresh produce from the garden!!
A lovely green caterpillar!!!  I'm sure he wasn't going to eat that much but I didn't really fancy finding him in my dinner so outside he went.  No doubt I will find him again in the vegie patch another day.

And while I was dealing with the caterpillar, what happened to my asparagus????

Oscar jumped up on the cupboard and promptly lay down on the asparagus and went to sleep.  Luckily the asparagus was still wrapped up in it's plastic bag.

Oscar the asparagus loving cat!
Normally he has his nose in Daisy's schmacko packet behind him.....
The trials and tribulations of trying to cook dinner in our house!!

Til next time, happy stitching

Saturday, September 3, 2011

A little stitch here and a little stitch there!

Last weekend I did not do a stitch in any of my cross stitch pieces, but I did stitch!

Many, many moons ago I got bitten by a different type of stitching bug - the patchwork and quilting bug.  Unfortunately I argued with the sewing machine (and my ex-husband) and didn't do many blocks.  You see my ex-husband was not as supportive of my stitching as my dearest darling husband of today is.  My motto is 'Stitching Forever, Housework Whenever', but that did not go down well with the ex!  Think that was probably one of the reasons I finally saw the light... but that is another story!

As I was saying, once upon a time I did try to teach myself to quilt.  I bought some templates and made some very simple blocks, which I found again only recently hidden away in a box with what was the beginning of my stash.  All the blocks were machine pieced and made using one set of templates.

Can't remember the name of this one
Card Trick
Ohio Star
Friendship Star
Can't remember the name of this one either
When I found my old blocks I also discovered a long misplaced piece of stitching.  This Pierrot was one of the first things I ever stitched.  Now that I have found it again I will have to finally do something with it.  I might turn it into a cushion... or not!  I actually have another kit that is the partner to this so maybe I should stitch that as well and then do something with the two of them... oh boy, my stitching list is long enough as it is!!

Pierrot - stitched way back in the 1980's sometime....
So that was then and this is now....

Since I started reading the "Elm Creek Quilts" series of books by Jennifer Chiaverini I have started to get this feeling that I want to start making these beautiful 9 patch blocks again.  The descriptions of the quilts in the books have fired up my imagination and for the last couple of months I have even dreamt about quilt blocks.... very strange!

So last weekend, I gave into the feelings and started to look around the internet to see what quilting blogs and info I could find to give me the hints and tips to start off again.  Dear Hubby has lots of quilting stuff that he has started accumulating over that last couple of months, but we don't have a lot of info relating to the traditional hand piecing and quilting that I want to have a go at.

On Sunday I pulled out my old templates and the material in my original stash and decided to have a go!  And this is the result.  The block is all hand pieced.  As you can see the seams aren't exactly the straightest, but overall the block turned out ok.  Nothing went particulary wrong, and lots of practice will make the block look better.
Hand pieced... in 2011
While I have been bitten by the "Quilting Bug" I am still going to be doing my cross stitch.  Cross Stitch is my first love and quilting will be just something else that I want to do when (if) I have the time.  For the next couple of weeks I will be cross stitching as I have a few pieces to finish off, and then I would like to have a go at playing with some 9 patch blocks for awhile.

Wish me luck!

Til next time, happy stitching no matter what type of stitching you might do...

Friday, September 2, 2011

Totally Useless SAL Update - New Moon 29 August 2011

Oh dear, late again!!  But as they say better late than never....

So hear we go, the latest TUSAL update from me.

As I didn't get to take my photo until today, and the sun was shining for a very brief time through the black clouds after a wet, thundery night, I thought that maybe I would take the photo outside today, and of course "Spring has also sprung" so what a better way to celebrate Spring than a photo with the Nasturtiums!
TUSAL Update - New Moon 29 August 2011
Daisy and the ORt's Jar
The ORT's this month have lots of lovely colours with a spattering of greys from Culinary Cat #2.  The reds on top are from the latest quilt square that I am stitching for "Quilts 4 Kids". 
The Never-Fail Nastartium patch -
dies off every summer and comes back every winter. 
This is the best they have ever been... all that lovely rain!!
Last night we had a significant amount of very heavy rain.  We were woken up around 11.30pm by the sound of heavy rain and the rain went on til about midnight when the thunderstorm hit and there was even more heavy rain.    Around 1am I dozed off and it was still raining... not sure how much rain we got but the forecasters predicted around 20mm (or almost an 1" in the old money)... I reckon we probably got at least that much...  Good start to our Spring rainfall!

The heavy rain did unfortunately batter my beautiful pansy pots around, but they will perk back up again soon (I hope).
One of the pansy pots after last night's rain looking very bedraggled!
Oh, and there is a geranium in that pot somewhere.....
 When Daisy Dog and I went for a very quick walk this morning (the sky looked very threatening so we didn't stay out too long), we wandered past the park down the street.  This park is like a big soakwell / catchment area for all the stormwater drains in the area.  Last week this park was dry.... today it is like a lake!  Even the ducks were there this morning....

If you look closely enough you can actually see the rings of where the water came up to.  It is now receeding and will probably be gone by tomorrow.  It takes quite a signifcant amount of rainfall for there to be this much water in the park - all very good news for our dams and catchment areas.
"Lake" in the park at the end of the street

Looking across the "lake"
So that's it for this ORT report.  I will be back in the next few days with a stitching update and a look at what I did last weekend.....

For more info on the TUSAL pop over to Daffycat's blog.

Til the next new moon on 27th September 2011, happy stitching and may your collection of ORT's keep growing!

New Moons - 2011
27 September
26 October
25 November
24 December