a garden break.

ok my only excuse for not posting is the lady's chest. still stitching on it so not much else to show for the past week.
i attended a nice tea with some friends yesterday in Seattle and had a good time. always fun with my friends. it was beautiful weather sunny and cool just like i love it.
i love the garden this time of year everything looks so beautiful and all my hard work pays off.

i love my Big Purple Aluim every year when it comes back i Smile!

here is another one of my beauty's a pink poppy and some succulents.

a shelf on a little patio in my back yard next to my orange poppies.
it is time to get back to my stitchin' deadline.
enjoy your summer and plant a beautiful flower that inspires. you.


Stitching, Design and Deadlines!

i knew i had a deadline to meet and this one creeped on me so fast. Judy O'dell's Lady's Chest stitching should be done by the end of July in order to follow her online class on finishing. i have been busy stitching since i got back from both of my lovely retreats this past week. i probably would have been done with it but i decided to change most of the designs. i figure if i am putting all this work into something i hope will last many moons i want it to represent me and my ideas. it was a little harder to change this design since we were never given stitch count  and each piece came out over about an 8 month period. i did have the dimensions of each panel but i had to wait till the full design was shown. i decided i would add my late sweet Poppy dog in the design along with a different flower than Judy's. time went on and changed kept coming. 
the top of the chest is my initial and two crowns i designed with a little bead work for sparkle. the flower in the "B" looks a little weird so i will have to work on that.
i also changed the bands that go around the chest. instead of a simple cross stitch band i put the alphabet in since i do love school girl samplers.

allot to finish but i am determine i will. i also changed the door of the lady's chest and the one below you
can see i put a flower on one side, a tree with my sweet Poppy dog on the other and then i will stitch a short saying on the inside. the other door will have similar design only i will put my full name somehow on the inside. this is when i hate that i kept my maiden name plus my married name, a bit long when ya have to stitch it in a small space. i also have to finish the back of the chest and the sides. i am leaning towards a diamond pattern for the sides with a crown or a flower in center and the back um need to decide on that one.

i have determination and even if i don't win the free Mary Whigham design i will come close to finishing. i know i will be proud that i gave it my all and what more can i ask of myself.
what have you been designing lately? any deadlines haunting you?


taking the time

well the last retreat of the summer for me has come and gone. i had such fun and worked on my lady's chest and have only a month left to complete and start the finishing online. i saw some old stitching friends and met a few new ones. i love Fort Worden, Washington and it didn't disappoint me this year. the weather was sunny and cool just like i like it.

Beth and i spent time walking along the beach and of course spent many hours talking and laughing. you wonder how we could still have anything to talk about since we just spent 4 days together a few days ago. yet we always do and that is what makes her so special. she shares and loves to laugh. i must admit i miss her already.

 while we are at Fort Worden we always stitch in the same building and this year i looked a little closer at my surroundings. i always think about the history of this fort and all those who walked the halls and the grounds before me. yet i really haven't looked close at the buildings and this year i happen to look at the radiator? not sure why except they do remind me of older times and this one was incredible, the graphics on them were amazing. angels, dolphin type creatures, swirls  and such.  i also love the pictures they have hanging in the halls of the fort. some are pictures of the fort being built and  the original architecture drawings also hang on the walls. i think each of these would contribute to an incredible stitched piece. i haven't yet decide when i will put this together but the ideas are endless.

i love the stairs in this building that i climbed every day. the wood is golden and smooth to touch.
most things in life deserve a closer look. take the time.


Mad Hatter Tea with Retreat

i know, i know all retreats are great, but this was the best. we laughed, talked about anything and everything, we sang to the radio while we stitched, we even dance to get those kinks out of our necks and backs from sitting too long, we shed a tear for memories and those we loved, and then with all of this going on we ate. i think for most of us food is a big deal, but with 5 women it was an important part of this retreat. you will see by the posted pictures above that Becky and Julie of "In the Company of Friends" put on a "Alice In Wonderland Mad Hatter Tea" that couldn't, no way could be beat. this was our second retreat on Guemes Island and we talked about the menu and assigned dinners and lunches so we wouldn't have all the left over food we had last year. we even stayed an extra day in hopes that  it wouldn't happen or maybe it was to really stitch an extra day. needless to say when we packed up on Sunday we had tons of left overs. I think we need to try this again next year. i think it will take time, years maybe to get it just right with the food thing.
we had the best weather, cool but so sunny and a walk on the beach was delightful.
yet the one thing i am always amazed at is what creative goodies we make for each other. Julie and Becky even with all the goodies to eat with the tea made incredible boxes with pin keeps,needle threader, hat pin cushion, scissor fob with scissors sat by our name tag. we ate talked and ate some more. the menu was endless.
Beth made delicious waffles with a fruit compote on Saturday.Jan made shrimp risotto :) on Friday and i made lasagna Saturday. we did have allot of great delicious food.
 Beth made beautiful necklaces that she stitched the inserts each different, and she also gave us an acrylic needle holder just off the presses so to speak. mine was a beautiful blue and my necklace has a wonderful blue flower in the design.
Jan made each of us a paper weight with a replica of the little red house we stayed in.

i decided to make each of us necklaces with some old lace i had bought in Ireland and then i had Tshirts made with a pair of scissors and the Red Barn Ladies retreat stitched on it and a needle with Guemes Island written out. of course we had to take a picture of us all wearing our new shirts
how do we top this year, we don't have to we know that just making time to get together to stitch and share is enough. Friendships are like that. i feel so lucky to have these ladies as friends and i always look forward to our next adventure together. i know we have many more years to create memories.
thanks friends!
here is our Mary Wigham's slowly getting done!


sharing the old.

i decided to share some of my older creations with you since i have not stitched much this week. this is something i charted and stitched. it belongs to a good friend it has been in her family since stitched in 1811 by Eliza Perkins. i had walked by this sampler and looked at it for many years and one day i just asked her if i could chart it. she was happy and we stitched it together. the colors are the faded ones on the originial,a little hard to see not the best photo.there are two vases of flowers on each side of the piece, a religious verse and two rows of alphabets, plus a few birds,trees and a simpler border. all done in cross stitch. it was so much fun to chart and figure out all the goodies on it. plus we were able to go back in her family tree and find a few things out about Eliza.

here is another project i saw in a magazine and decided i had to create something like it. i love that it has all our families homes we have lived in since we became a family. i painted our house and then put pictures of each of us in the windows then drew each of us below that. plus the tree has stamps on it from the countries we have visited together.  i also added some video tape to the edges since my hubby use to make video movies. it was a fun project. canvas, paint, photos and ideas!

this next photo is one my mother in law had hanging in her house for many years they were given to me when she died.they are done on silk gauze.  a woman from Saskatoon, Canada stitched them back in the 60's. i love them and have them hanging in my bedroom.such sweet looking kids.