Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Christmas ornaments

I have finished this years Christmas ornaments in plenty of time, so here are the photos finally....

Variegated Christmas Tree

Penguin Hugs - Paw Printings
JCS Ornaments 2004

The Angels Sang - Shepherds Bush
JCS Ornaments 2001

Snow Joe - Heart in Hand Needleart
JCS Ornaments 2000

One Starry Night - The Stitchers Habit
JCS Ornaments 1999
I finished my stone path some time ago and never took any photos to show you....but I will wait for a while because now we are getting a new fence around the property and the backyard is a bit of a mess. Where the tornado blew down the fence between us and the neighbours we have had a wood and coloursteel fence put up which gives us more privacy....and then a new paling fence around the rest of the property. After the fence is put up we will have to stain it...but that shouldnt take long...just needs to stay fine.

I wish everyone a safe and happy Christmas and New Year. And to all my stitching friends...heres looking forward to another great year of stitching and blogging :)

Monday, December 08, 2008

Blogger is infuriating

I have all my favourite blogs on my feeds, but the annoying thing is, I can't seem to comment on anyones blogs. Its always comes up with - 'internet explorer cannot display the webpage'. Does anyone else have this problem...some blogs I can comment on, and some I can't. I just don't want people to think I am not visiting their blogs. Believe me I am.....its just this problem I have. Really annoying.

Trying to stitch up a storm in between work...will have some progress pics soon...hopefully :)

Sunday, November 16, 2008

More Stash

I have been flat out the last 2 weeks with work, and have been so tired when I get home, that not a stitch has been stitched :) or should that be :(

However I did get some goodies in the mail from The Silver Needle in USA. I had to wait for a while for the Shepherds Bush kit...that didnt bother me and my credit card thanked me for the delay.

Bent Creek Blue Bird Zipper, Shepherd's Bush Happy Wishes Fob,Just Nan When Barnabee Met Bella Biscornu + the 2 pieces of fabric to stitch it.

I have one more order left and then thats it for a while...the New Zealand dollar has dropped really badly against the US, so prices aren't too flash. But still it was cheaper to get these things from the US rather than Australia where I also saw them for sale.

So the next 2 months until the next lot of full on meter reads, (I still have daily reads but its more relaxed), I will be devoting my time to stitching and gardening, and preparing for Christmas. I have all my presents sorted so thats a weight off my mind.

I sat down last night and considered selling off some of my Thomas Kinkade kits and Paula Vaughan books. The rationale for that was that I will never stitch them. I used to have a lot of Paula Vaughan charts but sold them and replaced them with the books. I was ready to enter all the kits and books onto the NZ auction site and couldnt do it...I just couldnt bring myself to getting rid of them. Even though with both designers their own work is so similar with each picture...I still love them. I tried to look through the TK kits and choose one to keep, but couldnt do that either. Another thing is I know I wont get a good price for them, because I think half the time with the NZ auction site, people expect things to be almost given away.

Maybe its just one of those things. I guess I am not the only one that feels this way about things collected in stash. We know we will never stitch them...but to get rid of them is definately out of the question :)

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

No progress

Thought I would check in. I had intended to make the most of the long weekend and do some stitching...however that wasnt to be, we went away 4 W Driving and that was lots of fun....very muddy fun on Saturday and up over steep rocky areas on Sunday.

Updated my wish list...crossing off things I have already got, removing things that will be out of reach and adding a few cuties like the Shepherds Bush sheep with the little hats. The latest one out is Queen Sheep and I think she looks a little odd...still cute though.

Hope everyones weekend was a little more fruitful than mine :)

Friday, October 17, 2008

How to get rid of an UFO quickly

The other day I decided to have a big tidy up of my craft cabinets....targeting all my stitching stuff so I would have things more organised, so I could find them quickly if necessary. I went to the Warehouse and brought a large 5 drawer plastic container...this is where the most important things will be kept. A drawer for each of the following....kits, patterns, fabric, UFOS (thats scarey) and threads and accessories. All my backup threads and accesories will be kept in my old craft cabinet. I also have a thought with the new container...if there is a fire or a natural disaster (like the roof blowing off the house - which could happen with the tornados and gusts we have round here - I witnessed it happening in our neighbourhood a few months ago), I can grab it and save my important stitching stuff. Ok sorry thats sick...my family and pets would come first...then the stash!!!!!!!!

Now while I was sorting things out I found my Meoow.com by Kats by Kelly that was partially finished. I dont have the pattern now...but I looked at what I had done and thought there was enough of a picture to make a gift for my DH who is away on a promotional course up north. So I made it into a flatfold...did it last night while watching tv. And I am pretty happy with the results :)

Making a flatfold was surprisingly easy...and it looks a lovely tidy finish. And what a great way to knock a UFO off the list and add something completely different to my 50 projects list :)

I am off to the Salvation Army shortly to drop off clothes and unwanted bits and pieces to their op shop. We gave them half our house load when we moved into our little house, because we wanted to declutter and also we didnt have much room. Well now I have found more stuff.

Also I will drop off my Operation Christmas Child box. Some of you may be familiar with this. Its run by Samaritans Purse, and you fill a shoebox for a needy child in a poor country. You just pick the sex and age of the child and go for it...filling the box with toys, hygene products, small items of clothing and educational products.
My daughter and I really enjoyed doing this, especially knowing the joy some little girl will get from it :)

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

My Wordle

Ive seen these around peoples blogs so I thought I would do one too...nothing like being a sheep :)

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Nothing stitch related...photo intensive...birds, rocks and things

Ok I warn you now....none of the following photos are stitch related...but I just had to share. Most were taken today on my trip over to Christchurch to drop my son and DH off at the airport. I took the photos on the way home to break up the 3 hour trip and to make things not so boring for my daughter. The last two were taken a couple of days ago......

Firstly I spotted a huge US airforce plane around the back of the airport so I watched it take off...

Just before Arthurs Pass which is the half way mark is Castle Hill Station, and Kura Tawhiti Conservation area. This is where some of the Chronicle of Narnia was filmed, and it is very popular with rock climbers. I decided to take a walk to see the rocks a bit closer....

Looking back to the road

Looking towards the West Coast

People who know me, know I love birds. At Arthurs Pass which is an alpine village, we have keas...they are one of our native parrots. They are mischievious birds that do heaps of damage to things because they like to pick and peck with their beaks...they especially like the rubber around car windows. There are signs everywhere to discourage people from feeding them...so they wont hang around the village. They do hang around and the tourists love them.

Eating a tissue

Eating my car!!!

After Arthurs Pass comes the Otira Gorge. The road through here used to be horrendous...a zigzag road that was very steep and narrow...

the road was replaced with the viaduct....

All this concrete is to stabilize the road and stop water washing it away

It was a slow trip home , but we finally made it.
The last 2 photos are from when I was doing the stone path, and I had a couple of visitors...a pair of ducks...they were friendly and the female was very inquisitive....(Hey Anne...these are for you )

Well thats everything....I hope those that stuck around enjoyed my photos...and I will have more stitching photos to show in a few days :)

Saturday, October 11, 2008

100th Post - yummies from the postie

Wow 100 posts...LOL finally got there...and took a while to do it.

This morning I got a package from Country Stitch....decided to have a spend up because I felt it was time to have one. Actually its about the 4th big spend up I have had recently...oh well, it makes me happy.

A hand-dyed fabric grab bag, 14 WDW threads, JCS Christmas Ornaments 2008

Although I said last time that I would wait till my ornaments were completely finished before I showed you them, I decided to show what i have done so far

One Starry Night - The Stitchers Habit
JCS Ornaments 1999

Snow Joe - Heart in Hand Needleart
JCS Ornaments 2000

I want to get cracking next week and do a lot of stitching...no more mucking around, so I can have more to show you next time.

Gosh wait but there is more....another parcel had arrived the week before last and I forgot to let you know, so I have taken the photo and...here tis.....

The Simply Seasons set by waxing Moon, GAST threads & Mirabilia Christmas Tree 2007 kit

Yes so much for my not getting anymore charts...as said for the 50 projects pledge I made....but I can't help myself and I know I have an obsession and can't stop buying more and more.

Tuesday, October 07, 2008

Busy landscaping

I have been doing quite a bit of stitching lately...just this years Christmas ornaments...but it would be nice to get them done early this year. I would put up some progress pics, but I would much rather wait and show the finished ornaments.

The weather here hasn't been too flash, so that is why I have been able to do quite a bit of stitching, yesterday it was a sunny day so I decided to start on my stone path. I have been wanting to create a stone path that goes out to the garage from the back door of the house.

I am just extending a stone path that was there...where the stones were hidden by grass and some of the stones were missing. We have collected some more stones from a river where we went 4 wheel driving a couple of days ago.

Yesterday was spent digging the area where the path will go. Not too hard to dig, because being by the beach we have sandy soil. Here is the first stage of the mess.

Monday, September 29, 2008

The Dragonfly

I finished another mosaic project. This is the other 'Funky Glass Art' kit that I got from the Dunkleys Craft show. I really enjoyed doing this dragonfly, I love the colours and mosaics is one of those crafts where you don't really have to think much...just let the creativity flow. I have this hanging in the sun porch by the front door and on a sunny day it absolutely sparkles.

I also have another stitching finish to show you...I actually finished the stitching last year and added the fabric frame early this year, hung it up by my front door, in the sun porch and completely forgot to take a photo.

Still, 'Above the Clouds' rules my life...sometimes I don't know why I started it, but I know it will look stunning once finished. I think as I have said before TW designs drive me batty with the excessive amounts of colour changes...it sure is a challenge.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

The Beach

Well no stitching to show but I couldnt resist posting some photos I took on my phone while I was at the beach with my daughter and my dog this afternoon. It wasn't a overly sunny day, quite overcast in fact. The beach is just over the road from our house and its nice to wander down there in all types of weather. Nadia was engrossed with throwing sticks into the water for poor old Zoe to retrieve. We even met with a surprise as we wandered along the beach.

Nadia & Zoe on Blaketown Beach, Greymouth on the West Coast of the South Island

"Bring that stick back Zoe, I want to throw it again!"

"Ok, this is the last time I will throw it, I promise - yeah right"

Look what was watching us a little further down the beach...a young seal.

One last look over its shoulder at us, before the young seal heads back to the water - I don't think it was too keen on Zoe.

Sunday, September 07, 2008

I need to wake up & smell the roses

I think I have been feeling sorry for myself when I worry that no one reads my blog. I realised that unless I participate more...whether posting regularly or commenting on peoples blogs, I am not going to generate any interest in my own blog.

I have had yet another change in my life....this is for the better I think. I actually thought I had posted about it, but I must have deleted the post before publishing it.

A couple of posts ago I said we were settled into our new house and I had a job as a butchery assistant. I have left that job. The upshot of it was I couldn't handle the cold temperatures I had to work in. The work was fine...I didn't really have to extend my brain to do it. I went to the Dr who gave me a medical certificate recommending I get shifted out of the cold climate. The pills I am on play havoc with my joints as it is, and the cold was getting into those joints and at times I could hardly move. Anyhow the supermarket weren't having that...because of my hours...they didnt want to move me. I put up with it for a while longer...I was sick of the pain and the tears every Sunday night when I knew I had work again the next day (I suffered from really bad mondayitis) so I resigned.

It was stressful because of our new mortgage and with my wages I was paying the rates and buying the groceries...plus my vehicle costs, clothes and stitching stuff. We were comfortable. Now I was not going to be able to contribute anything much. I went for job interviews and failed miserably with them. Then a light went on in my head and I decided to ring the company I used to do meter reading for.

Now guess what I am doing........they needed someone to do reads on the coast, because one man comes over from Christchurch (3 hours away) and the other comes up from Central Otago. And you know what is even better...I get a vehicle...I am getting a silver 5 door Toyota Rav4. I will be working for the Central Otago man who contracts to the people I used to contract to. And he is relieved to have someone over here on the coast. Yippee. Basically I will be doing the 2 monthly reads...plus all the special reads (that I used to do when we lived down south). They are going to change some of the reads so I can do some each month and it is being worked that I will get paid as much as I got at the supermarket but for less time. And I get a vehicle. And I get exercise too and see various parts of the area.

I worked on Wednesday, Thursday & Friday....and it was wet and stormy...and wouldnt you know it, the weekend is beautiful....and next week it is forcast for wet again...and I will be out in it...again. But I am happy. I dont have to stress about finding babysitters for school holidays, my daughter can come with me, I am back working outside which I love and I am happy that I will have more 'me time' too.

When I handed in my resignation, my DH said God will have a plan for me, and he was right!

So thats why, despite being happy about my employment situation, I was a little disheartened with no blog comments, no stitching and basically no one to share my hobby with.

On the health front generally everything is good. I passed another year of tests with flying colours. I spoke with my oncologist who said I could stop taking the pills if I wanted because there is no way the cancer will come back...but I am happy to carry on with those for a while yet...I dont want to take any chances.

My DH is happy with his promotion to Sergeant, lots more responsibilities for him...he just come back from yet another course. My daughter loves her new school, and going to Girls Brigade and just the extra opportunities that are here in a bigger place to what we normally live in.

I will have more stitching time again yippee. I need to get started on some Christmas ornaments and finish 'Above the Clouds'. But because it is a Teresa Wentzler design it is not the easiest. Thank goodness it is only a small picture. I really really want to get on with all the beautiful designs I have on my 50 projects list.

Oh another thing...that exercise scale thing I had at the top of my blog has been removed...there was no way I was going to complete 3000 ks. The thought was good when I wasnt working. I still regularly walk and cycle but not to the extent of when I was in Reefton.

Gosh, sorry, I just realised that this blog is like a novel...does it make up for the lack of posts this year? LOL

Thursday, July 24, 2008

A bit of stitching and some craft finishes

Hello - well this post is definately long overdue. Life certainly changes once regular working hours become a weekly standard. Not a lot of computer time and even less 'time out' time. Some of my 'time out' time was always spent stitching.

However in the 2 months since I last posted I have had 3 finishes.

The first was a birthday present for a friend, from one of my favourite designers.

Welcome Door Knocker - Bent Creek

The next finish is a totally different craft that I have never attempted before. At the Dunkleys Craft Show that came to Greymouth I decided to buy a mosaics kit...well 2 actually...from Funky Glass Art

This is the first kit...4 coasters...I thought they looked relatively easy and could ease me into this new activity...before I tackled the dragonfly I have yet to start.

So here are the coasters...all the tiles are green shades. This pictures doesnt really show all that well how the colours sparkle. They are really nice in real life LOL.

The last thing I have to show is a small shoulder bag I made. This is a Susa Glenn Designs kit. Everything is included except fabric for the lining and interfacing. It was really easy and I have a really professional looking bag...complete with an exterior zippered pocket and interior pocket. The handle is nifty in that I had to cover the cording with fabric...easier than I first imagined. I think its cool and I really love the colours and the beaded tassel is really neat.

Well thats about it for this post. I really want to get back into more regular stitching but I am finding it hard to commit to much time these days. I am keeping in mind that before Christmas gets too close I must start and finish my annual ornaments. As well as 'Above The Clouds' by Teresa Wentzler that I am stitching for my better half.

Monday, May 12, 2008

One Very Old UFO Finished

Despite the lack of participation on my blog I have done a bit of stitching and have managed to finish a UFO I started in 2001. It wasnt an overly huge project, and one I started with gusto then something else just took its place. And because I finished something, and because I am earning a bit of money...and too much work make everyone dull, I had a bit of a spend up with ABC Stitch Therapy.

SO first up here is my finish. It will go to my friend for her birthday at the end of May...............Its called Garden Accents and was a Dimensions Weekender kit. It was hard to get a photo with all the glass.


Now I know I am doing the 50 projects challenge and said I wouldnt buy anything more, I thought it was time to spoil myself....so heres what I brought.........

Welcome Door knocker - Bent Creek, I love Sheep - Elizabeth Designs, Bless Our House - Country Cottage Needleworks, Cherry Hill - Country Cottage Needleworks, Lavender Hill - Little house Needleworks, Charity & Ewe - Lizzie Kate & 2005 Snapperville - Bent Creek.

I also got some more Weeks Dye Works threads which arent in the photo.

As for my 50 Projects Challenge...yes I am weak, but who cares...Life is too short and I think its fun ordering from USA and waiting for the package to arrive and I always get such fantastic service....

Friday, March 21, 2008

Still here

Yes I am still around. Just letting everyone know I am still present on the internet. We have finally settled in our new house, and have just removed the last of the boxes...we still havent found everything though. I have a new job, a butchery assistant (can you believe that!!!) so with that and my firearms vetting work, I dont get much free time. I am stitching "Above the clouds" for my DH, and really havent done much since we moved. I want to finish it so I can carry on with more stitching on my list.

I wish everyone a HAPPY EASTER...............

On Sunday morning my daughter & I are driving back to Reefton (an hours drive) (where we have moved from) to celebrate sunrise on Easter Sunday. Then we will spend the day there celebrating Easter Sunday with the various churches. I really miss where we moved from, but get to see plenty of the locals who travel from Reefton to Greymouth for their shopping.

Sunday, January 06, 2008

Happy New Year

Its been 2 months since I posted. Very slack. I have kept up with readling my favourite blogs though. Oh that website 'feeds' option is a great help in seeing who has updated their blog.

I finished all my Christmas ornaments in time for the big day. Didnt stitch as many this year.

We have just brought our first house...over in Greymouth...the next big town which is 45 minutes south of us. My DH has got a promotion to Sergeant so it means moving over there, and because there is no permanent hosing with the job, we have to buy a house. So we did. Its a 1930 bungalow 1 block away from the beach, and we live near the airport, so there are little cessnas and microlights buzzing around all day. No big planes go in there.

We are still in Reefton. The packers come in on the 21st and we should be over in our house on the 24th. We have been back and forth to the house adding our own little touches. I am thrilled there isnt much in the way of a garden there, because I can landscape where and how i want too.

This is our first house, so we will increase the value on this one and then sell and move into something bigger. Maybe...maybe not. We can see how we feel in a years time. It is just exciting that we finally own something together.

Here is the house....

So now with this big purchase my stash will not be increased....just as well I have my 50 projects goal for the next 30 years :)

The only things I have brought lately is 50 + Weeks Dye Works & GAST threads that I needed for all the patterns I have collected over last year - Elizabeth designs, Blackbird Designs, The Prairie Schooler, The Drawn Thread, Chessie & Me and Bent Creek. I have enough to keep me busy. The only cost will be the framing.

I hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas and I wish everyone the very best for 2008.