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!

Sunday, November 29, 2015

More Christmas Finishes....

Hello again!  Goodness it ended up being a couple of weeks between posts. Work has been stupidly busy the last few weeks and I have been collapsing in a heap every weekend lately and, unfortunately the last thing my brain has been able to handle is facing the computer and blogging!  I have managed some stitching throughout the week but not on Friday nights... so I have nothing to report for the Friday Frolics blog, and I missed FNSI last weekend! (I had every intention of stitching but the office Christmas party had other ideas.... I so should have left early!!) This post is also a slightly late post for IHSW.... oops....

So onto the stitching update!

Surprise, surprise... I do have two finishes to show you today!  Both are "entries" in the Christmas Ornie SAL Blog... October's theme was Angels and November's theme is snowflakes / snowman or a winter scene.

October's theme first:
Remember some time ago I showed you my "Joy Angel" and she was looking bit strange....

Well, she is all finished now and currently on her way to England to be added to the Christmas Tree of Joy that Clare-Aimetu is organising for her local church.  Hopefully the tree will be full of cross stitched ornies from around the world all with the word "Joy" on them in one form or another.

The chart for this design can be found in the Cross Stitch Christmas magazine (1999), the design is called "Joyful Angels Triptych" (Designer Mona Eno).  There are three angels to stitch but I chose this one as she has "Joy" on her banner!  I stitched her on "Waratah" 32 count fabric from Stitches and Spice with DMC and Kreinik threads.  Unfortunately the shine I added to her wings doesn't really sparkle in the picture but it is there!

The second finish that I have to show you is my choice for November's theme.  I love snowmen and had a terrible time choosing which one to stitch.... so in the end I didn't do any!! Instead I went with a Fizzy Moon freebie and shoe-horned this into the wintery scene choice!

This freebie was published in the Cross Stitch Card Shop magazine (issue 92).  I decided to cover the plain white card with a vintage winter scene scrapbook paper that I had and then added a snowflake to fill in the rather large white space at the top.

This card is going to head off to the USA soon... The Birthday Thread Exchange Group that I am in on FB is doing a Christmas Thread Exchange, so I thought it would be nice to stitch a card instead of sending a bought one!

Well, that's all I have to show you today... the last couple of weeks stitching has been all about finishing these two pieces!  Now it's back to my November Halloween piece....

See you again soon.... have a great week!
Hugs xxx

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Mini Finishes on Show!

Nope... sorry.... no Frolicking was had on Friday.... we went and watched Daniel Craig in Spectre.  I just can't go past a James Bond movie - they are always so good for a laugh, and this one proved to be a right giggle in places! :o)

So I may not have stitched on Friday night.... but I did get some stitching done over the weekend while watching the cricket match between Australia and New Zealand.  I know I should have actually gone to the cricket seeing as it is on at the WACA at the moment.... but then I wouldn't have been able to stitch, especially seeing as Saturday was a whopper of a hot November day - 40 deg C! Hottest November day in years and then we finished up with a couple of wonderful thunderstorms that night. Unfortunately one of the thunderstorms happened right when everyone was signing Happy Birthday to Prince Charles... oops....

Now as my title suggests I have finishes to show.... and I am very pleased to show you my finished Cats and Mice...

First up I want to show you my ABC Chats from Les Brodeuses Parisiennes...

When I last showed you these gorgeous little beauties on my TAC post I had just started on "C"

ABC Chats as at 7 November 2015
Now "C" is finished.....

ABC Chats "C" finished 15 November 2015
I also finally got off my backside and ordered all the missing threads that I needed to finish off "A" and "B"... so that's all three done and dusted!  Right now my TAC ABC Chats afghan looks like this:

ABC Chats as at 15 November 2015
Aren't they so cute?  That is 3 down.... only 23 more to go!!  I must try and make a start on "D" before the month ends.... but somehow I don't think that will happen as I have some other deadlines looming that I must get stitching for!

I have also finished the final mouse from the set of 3 Margaret Sherry Christmas mice that I started way back in January!

Now that they are all done I will try and get around to finishing them into a bell pull or something similar...

So that's it... Cats and Mice finishes..... it does feel good to be able to finally show something that is finished!

Til next time, happy stitching
Hugs xx

Monday, November 16, 2015

Gifted Gorgeousness SAL 2015 - Update #11

This month's post is very much the same as last month.... a bit of déjà vu happening here I think!!

Moutons de Saisons "Printemps et ete" - Collection Tralala
Gift from Kaye from Kitten Stitching.  The original post of when Kaye gave me these charts is here.

Tralala Collection - Mouton de Saisons
Moutons de Saisons "printemps"
The last time you saw the cute "printemps" was last month...

"Printemps" - 15 Oct 2015
Because I love this piece so much I kept it out and kept stitching on it in between other pieces, and I am very pleased to show you that a considerable amount of progress has happened, including a frog and restitch of the brown line at the bottom (I misread the chart due to the fold line and stitched it as brown instead of green!)

"Printemps" - 15 Nov 2015
Again another déjà vu moment as this is all I have to show for November's GG post!  Hopefully December's post will be a bit more interesting and exciting!

Meanwhile, don't forget to visit Jo's blog for the link ups to see what everyone else worked on this month!

I do have some other stitching to show you including multiple finishes.... so stay tuned for that post tomorrow!

Til next time, happy stitching
Hugs xx 

If you're not sure what this particular SAL is all about.... Jo from Serendipitous Stitching hosts this SAL - the link to my post late last year about the SAL is here.... but essentially this SAL is about stitching charts/kits or using fabrics & threads that we have received as gifts, won in giveaways or anything that is intended be a gift or giveaway prize... or anything else that you can loosely use the word "gift" for!!  If you wish to sign up for this SAL, click on the button below or the button on my sidebar and you will be re-directed to Jo's blog.

Saturday, November 14, 2015

TUSAL November 2015

web image
As I write this post I am watching the BBC News while they report on the terrible events that occurred in Paris overnight.  When we first heard the news this morning I just couldn't believe what I was hearing.... and now I can't believe what I am seeing.  My heart goes out to everyone in France.... I know the French people are strong and they will survive these horrible attacks, but I fear there are dark days ahead...

My TUSAL post today will be short as I am struggling with the words....

TUSAL Nov 2015
Today's picture has the ORT's sitting in amongst the poppies with my Paris snow globe.  As the new moon date was Remembrance Day (11 Nov) and my garden is full of orange Californian Poppies I planned to take my photo out in the garden today... Typically the remembrance poppy is red... but my red poppies didn't re-grow - one day I must get some more red ones in the garden!  I decided to also add my Paris snow globe this morning after the terrible news of what happened in Paris overnight....

Stay safe everyone.... Paris and France we love you and are praying for you...

Hugs xx

If you don't know (or haven't heard) about the 2015 TUSAL, Daffycat is again hosting the fun Totally Useless SAL (TUSAL).  Essentially we stitch and save our ORT's (Old Raggety Threads) and every New Moon those of us participating in the TUSAL post a picture of our ORT's jar, and then leave little msgs for Daffycat on her blog to show that we have been stitching and have posted our wonderful pics.  Please head over to her sign up page and join in the fun!

New Moons - 2015
11th December

Saturday, November 7, 2015

The Alphabet Club - Detention for Letter "D"

"They only met online, but it changed their lives forever"
Today is the first Saturday in November.... 
which means today is posting day for
"The Alphabet Club" (TAC)

Here we are again... another Detention Saturday!  All these monthly milestones are showing just how quickly this year is flying by.  Are you ready for some more Aussie slang words and phrases?  As usual there are probably some which you know from other countries but hopefully there are some new ones in the list below that will make you smile.. ;o)

So here we go..... the letter "D":
Dag: a funny person, nerd, goof
Daks: trousers
Darwin stubby: 2 litre bottle of beer
Dead horse: Tomato sauce
Deadly treadly: a bicycle (push-bike)
Deadset: true, the truth
Dero: tramp, hobo, homeless person (from "derelict")
Digger: an Aussie soldier
Dill: an idiot
Dinkum or fair dinkum: true, real, genuine ("I'm a dinkum Aussie"; "is he fair dinkum?")
Dinky-di: the real thing, genuine
Do your lolly (mellon; nana; loaf): to get very angry
Don't get your knickers in a knot (or a twist): Don't get so upset about things (or something)
Doovalacky: used whenever you can't remember what something is called (we have other words for this problem as well - more on them another day!)
Down Under: Australia and New Zealand
Drongo: a dope, stupid person
Dummy, spit the: get very upset at something
Dunny: outside toilet

Australian Damper: Damper is traditionally a simple Australian unleavened bread baked in the hot coals of a camp fire. (The modern recipe below is not unleavened because it uses self-raising flour.)  The traditional way to cook damper was to wrap the dough around a stick and it was then cooked over the ashes or put into an iron pot and buried in the hot coals.  You could then put jam or something into the hole once it's cooked.  It is generally believed that the bread is called Damper because the fire is damped to allow the bread to be cooked over the ash covered hot coals, and as the recipe was passed on the drovers used to always remind people to dampen the fire to cook it...

Recipe: Modern version to bake in the oven or try while camping
450 grams (3 cups) flour, self-raising
¼ teaspoon salt
180 ml (6 fl oz) milk - if the mixture is too dry, add a little more milk
1 teaspoon sugar, caster (sugar, granulated)
80 grams (1/3 cup) butter, chilled
 extra flour as needed

1. Mix the flour, salt and sugar together into a bowl.
2. Rub the butter into the flour with your fingertips until it looks like fine breadcrumbs.
3. Add milk slowly and mix to form a soft dough.
4. Knead lightly on a floured board until smooth. Shape into a round loaf, brush with milk and cut a cross in the top surface of the dough.
For oven cooking
5. Grease and dust with flour a round cake tin. You can substitute a flat baking pan, but the round tin gives a better shape to the loaf.
6. Place dough in the pan and bake in a preheated oven at 190° C (375° F) for 30 - 40 minutes.
For camp fire cooking
5. Grease the camp oven (Dutch oven) and dust with flour. Add bread dough and cover.
6. Place in your camp fire, cover with hot ashes and coals and bake for about 30 minutes.

Note: to test if it's done, tap on the loaf and it should sound hollow. Cut into moderately thick slices and serve while still warm. Top with butter, golden syrup, or your favourite jam.

Variations: You can add a variety of ingredients to Damper for a different flavour. For example, add desiccated coconut, cinnamon, sultanas and extra sugar for a sweeter Damper.

So that's it for the "D" words..... now it's onto my TAC stitching (or lack there of!!)

Last month on my TAC post  I showed you where I was at with my "B" Kitty, and then a few days later I showed you a pic of a bit more progress.... well, I am sorry to say not much more has been done on the Kitties until this week when I finally managed to start on the "C" Kitty.  This is what my afghan currently looks like:

"ABC" Chats - Les Brodeuses Parisiennes
as at 7 Nov 2015
I just adore these kitties and I really should spend more time on them.... but as is the case with most stitchers I have too many things on the go at once and not enough hours in the day.... and then I keep finding more designs that I just have to start stitching... a never ending spiral!!

If you would like to join in the fun of "The Alphabet Club", pop over to Chiara's blog (The Grey Tail) to see what all the fun is about and link up your post for the Letter "D".

I think I have bored you all enough for now... so I will sign off and come back again tomorrow with a bit of a stitching update on what else I have been stitching over the last week or so.

Cheerio for now!
Hugs xx