Sunday, December 30, 2007

Winter Wonderland

I's a winter wonderland here in Minnesota! We have about 10 - 12 inches of snow on the ground right now. It's been snowing on and off for about two weeks now. This is a shot of the trees that line the side of our yard.

I'm enjoying a four-day weekend; I took a vacation today tomorrow and then Tuesday is the New Year holiday. I've been cleaning through stash and doing some organizing. Maybe I'll have some WIP or UFO lists tomorrow - or perhaps a New Year's stitching resolution!

I have done some stitching too -- this is a work-in-progress shot of Judith's neighborhood RR. She has requested that we use the houses that were posted on Maryse's blog throughout 2007. I'm stitching November.

I also finished stitching my Fair & Square block for round #4. Here's a teaser - this is just the signature block. I can't show the other block until it is received by Darla!

Hope you have a nice evening. Have a safe New Year's eve too - wherever you might be celebrating it!

Monday, December 24, 2007

Merry Christmas to All!

Heartfelt Christmas wishes to all my stitching friends! Thank you for sharing your love of needlework with me. Best wishes in 2008!


Cathy B

Sunday, December 23, 2007

Weekend Update - Dec 23

Hello dear friends! It's been a busy couple of weeks! I'm sure we're all feeling the holiday crunch. I'm almost ready - made two batches of fudge today and wrapped nearly all of our presents. Whew!

I have some updates for you -- both gifts sent and received. I received a package from Anna on Friday. Anna was my exchange partner for the Stitching Bloggers Birthday/Christmas exchange in 2007. She sent this very pretty crocheted ornament and a pattern from "The Gathering Place" for Christmas. I must say that I am not familiar with this designer, but the design appeals to me very much and I look forward to stitching this! Thank you Anna!

Then I was surprised by a PIF package from Katrina which included a lovely fob stitched by her and two cuts of fabric (Blackbird Designs/Moda). It's beautiful and I will enjoy using this fob! Thank you Katrina!

I received word that my Specific Designer/LHN exchange finally reached Nela. She had been away for a couple of weeks so I suspect the package was waiting for her to return. I stitched this lovely design from LHN - Rose Sampling - and finished it into a needleroll. I decided to finish the ends with some Hardanger rather than hemstitching them. I didn't take a picture of any of the other goodies, but maybe Nela will post a picture on her blog.

I think that's it. It's snowing like crazy here in Minnesota - a good day to be inside baking and wrapping. Oh, by the way - my dear son, my first baby turned 18 today! We're going to celebrate tonight when he returns from hockey with dinner from Famous Dave's!

Sunday, December 09, 2007

Weekend Catch Up

Here I am playing weekend catch up again! This time of the year always seems to get so crazy! Of course, winter sports are in full swing now. My daughter plays basketball and my son manages the varsity hockey team, so we are spending more time at their games supporting them. As a result, there just is less time for other things, like blogging...

I received two wonderful exchanges this week. Carolyn is my exchange partner this year for the Seasonal Exchangers group that I belong too. She sent this lovely pinkeep and a box full of other goodies (a chart from Calico Crossroads, socks, notepad, Harvest decoration, etc., etc.) Here is the pinkeep - it's stitched and finished just beautifully! Thank you Carolyn!

Also in the mail, was a lovely exchange from Hitomi in Japan. She had my name for the SBEBB Specific Designer exchange. The designer we selected for this round is Little House Needleworks. Hitomi stitced the chart Garden Pleasures and finished it as a pinkeep. She also stitched a very dainty scissors fob with my initial "C" on it. Hitomi also enclosed some other nice things; here's a picture of the pinkeep and scissors fob. Thank you Hitomi!

Two of my exchanges were received this week too. Heather was my partner for the USEBB ornament exchange and Jenn was my partner this year for the Stitching Bloggers Birthday/Christmas Exchange. I sent both of them one of my Hardanger Angels. I really enjoy stitching these and I think they look so delicate and lacy when hung on the tree. Both of them received a few other goodies too!

Well that's it for now -- have a good day!

Saturday, December 01, 2007

Two Wonderful Packages

The package in the mailbox streak continues!

Yesterday, the package from my exchange partner on the Stitching Bloggers Birthday exchange blog arrived. It couldn't have been any more timely - yesterday was my birthday - woo hoo! Anna from Poland had received my name. I received a lovely gift from her - this ornament (a design from Blue Ribbon Designs), this ceramic rooster and ceramic bowl (which would be great for collecting orts!), a pattern from Notforgotten Farm (Family Tree) and lovely doily from Poland. It is so exciting to connect with stitchers all over the world and I was very excited to receive this lovely package from Anna. Thank you Anna!

Today, a package arrived from Marie. Marie had my name for the USEBB Ornament exchange! Check out this beautiful ornament design from Nutmeg Needle. If you know Marie, then you know that her finishing is superb! I am quite certain that this little tissue holder is also Marie's work. Lots of other goodies all packaged in a holiday tin. Thank you Marie!

My ornament for the USEBB Ornament exchange is on its way and should arrive at its destination early next week. I'll share a picture once it arrives. Also sent off a Christmas package to my partner on the Birthday/Christmas blog - that one too will arrive soon and I'll share a picture with you.

Aside from that, not much else going on. We received our first major snowfall today and it looks like we probably got about 6 or 7 inches of the fluffy white stuff. It wouldn't be a Minnesota winter without it!

Thanks for stopping by!

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

An Exchange and Wonderful Stitching Friends!

Today my mailbox runneth over! It's been a busy week at work so far, so I was happy to come home to lots of mail today.

Let's start with the exchange first - I participated in the USEBB Eye of the Needle exchange. This exchange was dedicated to our love of stitching. Nancy had my name and stitched this beautiful pinkeep for me. The design is from Mary Garry. The fabric is perfect for this exchange! She also sent me this cute little ort bag - the outside fabric has frogs in the design. Hopefully I won't be doing too much frogging! There were a few other goodies enclosed - a fat quarter of fabric, some ribbon and some stickers. A wonderful exchange - thank you Nancy!

Now, let's talk about my stitching friends Barbara and Carol! We'll start with Carol - she sent me this lovely pin pillow for my birthday. The design is from Plum Pudding Needlearts and it is called Blessed Be. Beautifully stitched and finished by Carol!

And Barbara has been a dear friend since I first discovered this online stitching world. She sent gifts for my birthday and Christmas. This little ornament is called The Gift and is a design from The Needle's Prayse. The pillow is a design called Reindeer Garden from Threads Through Time.

Wonderful gifts from wonderful friends!

I'm hoping that my Little House Needlework exchange will arrive soon at its destination. It had a ways to travel.

I forgot to share that I spent last Friday night out stitching with a nice grup of ladies - they get together every Friday night and invited me to join them. We talked and stitched and stitched and talked. Midway through the evening we took a short break for supper and then we stitched and talked some more! It was a fun time. If you have a chance, please visit Joan's blog. She just joined the blogging community recently, but has been stitching for a long time. This little group met at her house on Friday night.

Well, that's it for now. Thanks for stopping by!

Friday, November 23, 2007

Another Exchange Received...

I heard from Simone today that the Autumn Exchange (Seasonal Exchangers) package that I sent to her arrived! The piece I stitched for her is from Homespun Elegance and it is called "Delivering Harvest". I finished it as a flat fold. Of course, I sent other goodies too, I just never take pictures of them! Be sure to visit Simone's blog, her pictures are better!

Of the three exchanges I mailed last Saturday, two have been received. Just one more to go now!

Happy Friday!

The morning after...yes, we enjoyed our Thanksgiving feast yesterday - turkey, mashed potatoes, stuffing, carrots, wild rice, gravy, pumpkin mother cooked a delicious meal and for that we are all thankful!

I'm thankful too for all the great stitching friends I have made online since I started this blog a little more than two years ago!

Today I'm at home, enjoying a day off of work. I have lots to do - I have a newsletter to put together for EGA, a couple more exchanges to finish, well, and then there's always the laundry and other housework (it never ends!) It's still good to be at home!

Goldie sent me a note yesterday advising that she had received the Eye of the Needle exchange piece that I had stitched for her. I really liked the piece but was at a loss for how I wanted to finish it. I ended up finishing it as a pillow. Goldie also received some charts from her wishlist.

Mary Garry's Sew & Sew:

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Finally - Something to Post!

I know, I know! It's been a long time since I last posted. I've just been so busy working on exchanges that I really had nothing to share. The tide will be turning though -- I'm mailing three exchange packages tomorrow: Eye of the Needle, Specific Designer (LHN), and Seasonal Exchange (Autumn). I must say that I really liked all three items that I stitched and finished; it was very difficult packaging them to send away. My consolation is that they are going to good homes! Hopefully I'll be able to share some pictures with you soon.

I do have one picture -- my Fair and Square blocks arrived from Tuula on Saturday! When Tuula asked me what she should stitch on her square, I suggested a Finnish design. On the block she sent me, Tuula stitched a cap that is typically worn by reindeer owners in Lapland. Along with the square, she sent some mittens knitted with a traditional Lapland pattern. I love them! Finally, she also sent a calendar with beautiful pictures of Finland. I will be reminded of our friendship each time I look at it! Thank you Tuula!

Saturday, November 03, 2007

She Shops, She Scores!

Yes, I feel like I scored big time today. My SIL and I visited our favorite needlework store on the other side of the Twin Cities today. We hadn't been there in awhile, and I managed to get out of there without spending too much money!

On our way home we decided to check out another store. This shop has lots of yarn and offers knitting classes, but is now under new management and they are going to try to include more needlework supplies. In the back room, on the floor, underneath the shelves of linen fabric were two boxes of counted cross stitch patterns (left from the old owners I think!) Now my SIL and I love to dig through clearance bins and old patterns, so we started flipping through the stack.

I thought I died and went to heaven -- I found some old Prairie Schooler charts that I liked after seeing them on a blog (and purchased off of Ebay!) #74 The 12 Days of Christmas, #62 Kris Kringle, and #20 St. Nicholas! And the piece de la resistance....Raspberry Girl Sampler from Mary Garry! Needless to say, this little stop made my day!

Sorry for the dark photos, it's kind of hard to get a decent photo at this time of night! Talk to you soon!

Friday, November 02, 2007

Cleaning House

I've decided that I have way too much stuff! Too many patterns, too much fabric, too many threads! I was cleaning through some of my charts tonight. The following are available to anyone who wants them (you can pick and choose if you want!) The majority of these charts have never been stitched and are in good condition.

Heart in Hand
-Wee Santa '97
-Wee Santa 2005

Hillside Samplings
-House Samplings

I'm not asking for any payment, but perhaps you would consider a contribution towards postage, depending on what you would like and where it is going to! Please send me an email if you are interested. Thanks!

Saturday, October 27, 2007

Lauren's Neighborhood RR

Tonight I put the finishing touches on Lauren's Neighborhood RR. Lauren asked for a Winter theme. The design I selected is from an older Prairie Schooler chart. I think it looks pretty good, don't you? Hopefully Lauren will like it! You can see lots of cool neighborhoods under construction at the Hello Neighbor blog.

And here's an updated photo of the dogs! Our puppy, Maggie, is almost six months old and about 35 pounds now (she's the yellow lab). Zeta, our chocolate lab, pretty much lets the little one do whatever she wants!

Thank you for stopping by and for commenting. I feel horrible because I haven't had much time to visit and comment on your blogs, but I'm trying to work it back into my routine! Thanks for being so patient with me!

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Mid-week Update

Hello friends! I am really going to make the effort to post more than just "once in awhile", so here's a mid-week update for you.

In my last post I promised a picture of the Hardanger doily that I stitched recently. It will look familiar to my regular readers - it's the same design that I used for my PIF gifts this year. I think I used the remaining threads from the doily that I had stitched for Angela! This one is going to Jean at Attic Needlework for her Silent Auction for Breast Cancert.

I've been working on Lauren's Neighborhood RR this week. Lauren's neighborhood theme is winter. I decided on a Prairie Schooler house. I have to finish the windows yet and a horse and sleigh will be stitched underneath the house. I want to add something in the top left corner, but I'm not sure what yet...

Well, that's it for me today. Hope you are having a good week!

Saturday, October 20, 2007

Beautiful Fall Day

It's been such a long time since I've posted and I apologize for that. I don't know what has happened to me - I guess I've volunteered for a few too many things, or maybe I'm just not as organized as I used to be. At any rate, there just don't seem to be enough hours in the day to get everything done! Unfortunately, blogging always falls at the bottom of my to-do list.

This morning I was working on our local EGA chapter's newsletter. I took over this job last spring and it has turned out to be a bigger job than I thought it would be. We only produce a newsletter six times a year, but it's time consuming (and 12 pages long!) Today I had to put the stamps on the newsletters, make sure that I had mailing labels for all of the sharing chapters and advertisers, and then just do some general organizing! It's all done now, whew!

On the stitching front, I have been working on a few things. So here comes an update...

Fair and Square Round 3 - I think I had until Nov 2 to mail for this round, but I decided to get mine stitched and mailed early. Tuula was my partner for this round and I think that she likes her square. I took elements from LHN's A Stitcher's Prayer and combined them to make the 50x50 square. I had picked up a couple extra copies of the JCS Ornament issue and so I sent one along with my square; I figured that they might be hard to find in Finland.

Last night I completed a small pink Hardanger doily that I'm going to send to Jean at Attic Needlework for their Silent Auction for Breast Cancer in November. I'll snap a picture of it later today after I have steam pressed it. I met Jean at the Hands to Work retreat earlier this month - such a nice lady!

The stitching is complete for two of my upcoming exchanges - Specific Designer exchange (Little House Needleworks) and Eye of the Needle (dedicated to love of stitching). I just have to do my finishing and these will be ready to go by the deadline of November 15.

Today I need to go through my patterns and find some designs to use on Lauren's Neighborhood RR. She has selected a winter theme for her neighborhood. Oh darn, I have to go through my patterns today????

The Hands to Work retreat was fabulous! I am so glad that I went. It was held in Strasburg, Virginia (about an hour from Dulles airport). I had never been to Virginia before and the scenery was beautiful. We had time to drive through the Shenandhoah mountains and the colors were just starting to change. Just a beautiful area!

Tracy Riffle from Hands to Work did a great of organizing this retreat. The space was perfect for stitching, well-lit and comfortable. There were four classes - a wool applique needleroll from Maggie Bonanomi, a tulip pincushion and a beautiful needleroll class with Barb and Alma of Blackbird Designs, and finally The Virtuous Woman Stocking with Kathy Barrick-Dieter. It was such a treat to meet these four ladies! Another surprise - Anne Brown, the Goode Huswife, was there selling her new book which include reprints of ten of her most popular designs (of course, I bought it!) I haven't worked on any of the four projects since returning home, but I will be tackling the tulip pincushion soon as I don't have much left to do on it. Here's a picture of some of my new friends plus Tracy (back row left), Alma, and Barb (back row right). I'm in front of Alma and Barb. They are two of the nicest ladies!

If you ever have the opportunity to take a class from Barb and Alma - do it!

Well, since it's almost noon, I think I should probably get dressed and start doing some cleaning around the house. I need to make a trip to the post office with all of those newsletters too! It's going to be a beautiful fall day here. For the first time in I don't know how many days we have clear skies and no rain.

Have a great weekend and Happy Stitching!

Thursday, October 04, 2007

Gone Stitching!

I am flying out to Virginia this morning to attend this weekend's Hands to Work Retreat. Soooo excited. Look for a full report later next week!

Have a great weekend!

Saturday, September 29, 2007

Stash for Sale

I am parting with some of my stash – I had good intentions when I purchased these projects, but now I find that I have far more than I would ever be able to stitch in my lifetime!

All of these charts have never been stitched. Non-smoking home. Fibers or fabric are included where indicated. Prices include postage for U.S. addresses only. I accept check, mo, or PayPal – please email me at if you are interested or have questions.

The Drawn Thread

-French Garden Needlework Pocket & Scissors Keeper (original retail $21 – includes chart and Needlepoint Inc Silk, Caron Waterlilies, beads and charm) - $10

-Lily of the Valley (original retail $30.75 – includes chart, fabric, fibers, and beads to complete project) - $15

Saturday, September 22, 2007

Just a Bunch of Nunsense

Yes, that's right, I meant "nunsense" not "nonsense!" I usually limit my posts to stitching related items, but since I have nothing new to show I'm going to deviate a little bit!

Last weekend we had our fall festival at church. This year, our church is celebrating its sesquicentennial (150 years). Lots of things to do for all ages over the two-day celebration. On Saturday night there was a variety show. Some of my friends from church and I have done this act on and off for the past five or six years. Since it was such a significant year, we decided to "dust off our habits" and do the act again this year.

Let me explain...have you ever seen the play "Nunsense" - it's hilarious, especially if you were raised Catholic and went to private school where the teachers were nuns. Even if you didn't experience it first hand, the play is still quite funny. If you haven't seen Nunsense, then I'm sure you've seen or heard about the movie "Sister Act" starring Whoppi Goldberg.

Now why am I telling you all of this? See below:

We call ourselves the "Sisters of the OCC" (Order of Complete Chaos!) By the way, there was a real nun up there on stage with us! I'm the nun at the microphone in the middle.

We are an "equal opportunity" order!

Yes, I'm the good sister on the right. That's apple cider that I'm drinking by the way (yeah right!)

I guess you've just seen another side of me!

Friday, September 21, 2007

PIF Gift Received

My fifth and final PIF gift for 2007 was received a couple of weeks ago by Angela in England. What did she receive? Yup, you guessed right -- one of my hardanger doilies!

Sunday, September 09, 2007

A Few More Pictures

I'm going to be traveling this week for work, so before I go I thought I'd leave you with a few more pictures.

Lavender Rose asked what I do with all of the exchanges that I receive. I'm very lucky to have a room that's dedicated to my stitching habit. Our family computer is located in that room too. So here are just a couple of snapshots - some of the smalls are in baskets and some are up on a shelf. I have a few of them tucked away and then I rotate every so often!

Look at the thoughtful RAK I received from Lelia this week. She volunteered at the Midwest Stash exchange this past week and this was the project at the "make it, take it" table. All proceeds went to the American Heart Association. The beaded fob was made by another friend of Lelia's. Too cool!

Lastly, -- I got one! When I checked at JoAnn's last weekend, they didn't have the new Ashley scissors in, but this weekend they did. They are really pretty!

Have a good week everyone; I'll be back on Wednesday!

Saturday, September 08, 2007

It'a All About Me!

Yes, I had a great mail week - package after package all for me! It's always a lot of fun when exchanges start rolling in.

Package #1 - My Fair and Square block from Brenda. We discovered that our likes and dislikes were pretty similar, so it was quite easy to decide on a design for each others squares. I stitched the house from the bottom of The Drawn Thread's Sunflower Bellpull (picture was a few posts back). As you can see, Brenda stitched a house from an LHN design. It's great!

Package #2 - What's the Buzz exchange on the SBEBB. Wendy in Canada had received my name and she stitched this design from Shepherd's Bush and finished it into a lovely pillow that can be hung if desired. I also received a great pattern from Wendy - A Quaker Floral from Midnight Stitching. I haven't stitched anything from this designer so I'm excited to stitch this one.

Package #3 - Seasonal Exchange - Summer. Carolyn must have been studying my blog. She figured out how much I like designs from Homespun Elegance. This great design is finished and ready for hanging in my stitching room. Carolyn really spoiled me by sending lots of goodies - check out the picture below!

Hope everyone is having a great weekend. I've been doing my usual - laundry, cleaning, etc. Hopefully there will be time for stitching later this evening!

Monday, September 03, 2007

Not Much to Blog About

Hi everyone. Hope those of you here in the U.S. enjoyed today's holiday; I know I did. I will never complain about a long weekend!

I haven't got too much stitching to show. Recently I started The Counting House from Little House Needleworks. I've also been stitching Hardanger angels. I can make one in about 90 minutes - I still have the cutting and the wrapping to do, but that won't take too much time. I've got five stitched right now.

So that's all I have to report on! I haven't shared an updated puppy picture lately so here's a recent picture of our little Maggie - she's almost 4 months old now.

Thanks for stopping by. Hello to all the newbies that have stopped commented too!

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Two More Exchange Updates

It's always a relief to learn that packages mailed have been safely received! Jeanne emailed me yesterday to say that she had received my package for the "What's the Buzz" exchange. It took me awhile to decide on a design; I finally settled on this scissors fob from Shepherd's Bush. I included some other goodies with a "bee" theme. Here's the fob front and back:

Then today, I heard from my Fair and Square partner for round two - Brenda received the block that I stitched for her. We're supposed to keep these to a 50X50 stitch count, but with her permission I went slightly larger - 51X54. You might recognize this design; it's from the bottom of the Sunflower Bellpull by The Drawn Thread.

Sunday, August 26, 2007

Warning! Long Post Ahead

Hi! Hope everyone is enjoying what is left of summer. My kids start school on Tuesday, so we'll be getting back into a routine again.

The past few weeks have been kind of busy for many reasons - I've been working longer hours at work, our new puppy keeps us on our toes, and we've been working on some home improvement projects. I also accepted responsibility for writing my EGA chapter's newsletter - it turned out to be more involved than I expected! At the end of the day, there's just not much time left for stitching! Fortunately, I was able to keep up with the commitments I had made, but that's about all I had time for. I hope that I'll have more time this fall - I have so many things in my stash that I want to stitch!

Let's start with the pinkeep that I sent to Katrina - this was for the Summer House exchange. I really love stitching houses. This design was from a French website. I didn't take a picture of the back, but I used some of the pink/cream ABC sampler fabric from Blackbird designs.

Next up is the Summer exchange that I sent to Simone. This is a seasonal exchange group, so Simone will be receiving something from me for Fall, Winter, and Spring too. For this round, I stitched Blooming Summer bellpull from Homespun Elegance. I adjusted the flag on it to include the colors of the flag for the Netherlands.

Another thing I have been working on recently is a Neighborhood Round Robin. I've been stitching on Erin's neighborhood this round. Erin requested a "woodsy" theme, so I think I did okay in trying to meet her request. I actually combined elements from The Drawn Thread and Prairie Schooler to come up with a block that looks like this:

So, that's about it for now. In a few days I should have more pictures to post. My fifth and final PIF gift, my Fair and Square exchange block, and my piece for the What's the Buzz exchange were recently mailed.

Thanks for stopping by - I'm sorry that I haven't been very good about blogging lately. I do try to read blogs once a week but haven't been taking time to comment. It's always so much fun to see what everyone else is working on! Thanks again --- until next time, Happy Stitching!