Sunday, 28 December 2008

A Stitching Year In Review

The year has almost come to a close and this is a great time to reflect over the past year and see what I have accomplished with my stitching.

This year I have stitched:

  • 12 Blessings of Christmas by Lizzie Kate - Very close, but no cigar
  • Red Thread by Bent Creek - Halfway there
  • Angel of Winter by Lavender Angels - Perhaps we shouldn't disscuss this one as there are no more than 100 stitches done on her (yes I am very bad!)
  • Five exchanges for Fair & Square completed
  • Five exchanges for Hooked On Exchanging completed
  • 3/4 of the way through the Little House Needeworks RR
  • Stitching Bloggers Birthday Club sent - I never received my gift and this is very sad
  • Ten finishes
  • 9 WIP's
  • 3 UFO's

Next year, I hope to get the following done:

  • Finish 12 Blessings of Christmas by Lizzie Kate
  • Finish Red Thread by Bent Creek
  • Make a real go at Angel of Winter by Lavender Angels
  • Finish the Little House Needeworks RR
  • Participate in at least three exchanges for Fair & Square
  • Participate in at least three exchanges for Hooked On Exchanging
  • Participate at least three exchanges for Year Long Prairie Schooler Exchange
  • Get a good amount stitched on the Me, Myself and I RR
  • Stitch 12 biscornu for the Basket Of Biscornu SAL
  • Finish all my WIP's and have no more than 3 news ones by the end of the year
  • Make a go at the following smalls:
  • Petit Hornbook Noir (Mon Ami Pierre)
  • Bluebirds and Daisies (Blue Ribbon Designs)
  • Providence & Tea with Jane (The Sampler Girl)
  • Wishing you all a safe and happy new year!

    Edited to include detailed list of finishes:

    Lizzie Kate Flip-It - Peace
    Scissor Fob Exchange (HoE)
    Lizzie Kate Flip-It - Charity
    Fair & Square Round #5
    Biscornu Exchange (HoE)
    LHN RR - Nicki's Square
    Lizzie Kate Flip-It - Family
    Lizzie Kate Flip-It - Faith
    Pendibulle - My Aunt's Attic design
    Lizzie Kate Flip-It - Love
    Blue Ribbon Designs - Health & Happiness Ornament
    Bent Creek Red Thread Snapper - Snowman
    Bent Creek Red Thread Snapper - Heart Of Love
    Bent Creek Red Thread Snapper - Fly A Kite
    Bent Creek Red Thread Snapper - Smell The Flowers
    Fair & Square Round #7
    LHN RR - Debbi's Square
    LHN Exchange (HoE)
    Lizzie Kate Flip-It - Home
    LHN RR - Joanne's Square
    Mill Hill Kit - Holly Days Stocking
    Fair & Square Round #8
    Elizabeth's Designs - Special Stitcher
    Lizzie Kate Flip-It - Friends
    Lizzie Kate Flip-It - Joy
    Bent Creek Red Thread Snapper - Maypole
    Bent Creek Red Thread Snapper - Road Trip
    LHN RR - Melissa's Square
    Elizabeth's Designs - Home Sweet Home
    Fair & Square Round #9
    Carriage House Samplings - Black Willow Farm
    Helga Mandl - No Frogs Allowed
    Midsummer Nights Design - Love Bird
    Floss Tag Exchange (HoE)
    Lizzie Kate - Bless The Baby
    Elizabeth's Designs - Bee Hive
    Christmas Ornament Exchange (HoE)
    Fair & Square Round #10
    LHN RR - Cathy's Square

    Saturday, 27 December 2008

    The Post-Christmas Post

    I can safely say that Christmas was a major success and Santa was very good to my daughters. Aurelia woke at her usual hour, having completely forgotten that she would receive any presents at Christmas. We first had to inspect the plate left for Santa and he had drunk all his milk and left all but a few crumbs of his choc-chip cookies. The reindeer also ate all their carrots. She was so excited when she saw all the presents under the tree. I don't think she really knew what to look at first.


    While she was playing with her presents, I made salads and Black forest trifle for lunch at my Mum's place. All Aurelia had for breakfast was jelly leftover from the trifle. She was too busy playing with her new kitchen.


    We had a wonderful lunch at my Mum's place and the weather treated us pretty well. Here is a picture of Aurelia dressed as a fairy at Mum's place.


    Towards the end of the day, Aurelia was so tired and grumpy, she wasn't even interested in opening any more presents. Amelie obviously was completely oblivious to all that was going on, but was also spoiled by her Nanna and Nonno and my brother and sister-in-law.


    Yesterday we had my DH's family and my parents around for a lazy Boxing Day lunch. It was a great day to use up all the leftovers and have plenty of salads and cold meats. Aurelia received a sand and water table and spent most of the afternoon playing with it. This morning, the area at the back door is covered in sand.


    The weather has been brutal yesterday and today. It's hot, overcast and incredibly humid. However, I did brave the weather and crowds and headed to the major chain store craft shop and purchased ribbon, trim and fabric for finishing the remaining Fair & Square blocks and to enhance my stash.


    I think the rest of today will be spent playing 'Crash of the Titans' on my Nintendo DS and watching Jamie Oliver DVD's. The game and the DVD box set were lovely gifts from my DH.
    I hope you all had a great Christmas!

    Monday, 22 December 2008

    A Merry Christmas To One And All

    I would like to wish you and your families a very Merry Christmas and a safe and happy new year. May you all be blessed with much love and happiness.


    Thank you to all those people who visit my blog and an especially big thank you to everyone who has left comments on my blog. Every morning I am eager to see what comments you have left for me, they definitely brighten my day.

    As a little gift, I have a quick stitch that I designed this morning. It could be used as a ornament or even a mini biscornu. Please choose whichever colours you like. The circle with a dot in the centre indicates a bead. Have fun and I would love to see what you all come up with.




    Saturday, 20 December 2008

    Christmas Party!

    Aurelia 'driving' the fire truck at the Volunteer Bush Fire Brigade Christmas Party


    I thought I would like to share some photos of my little angel at her Playgroup Christmas party.

    Aurelia was none to pleased getting her gift from Santa

    She very excitedly dressed up as an angel for the Nativity play

    Someone is completely oblivious to what is going on


    Thursday, 18 December 2008

    I am still here!

    Wow, what a week! Amelie received her first immunisation last Tuesday and what a roller coaster of a week she has had. On Wednesday she slept for about 20 of the 24 hours. Then the next two days she was really upset and couldn't settle or sleep very much at all. On Saturday and Sunday she had diarrhoea and vomiting, lots of gas and a very upset tummy as a reaction to the rotavirus vaccine she received. Aurelia picked up a cold from the Health Clinic where Amelie had her immunisation and suffered with that since Friday night. She then passed it on to Amelie who is still feeling sick. Needless to say, I have had very little sleep, no time for stitching and no time for any housework. My DH has been wonderful, pitching in and helping as much as he can when he is home.

    Unfortunately, it means no stitching gifts for anyone this Christmas and no baked goodies for any of the neighbours. I am sure that everyone will understand.

    Next week is going to be a busy week for us. I have visitors all this weekend. I have to prepare a few dishes for Christmas lunch at mum's place. I have more visitors and then on boxing day I have my DH's family coming to visit and lunch to prepare. I think I am definitely going to need a rest when Christmas is over. At least all the Christmas presents are purchased and wrapped. I have my DH to thanks for that, he has been excellent buying and wrapping and hiding all the gifts.

    Vonna mentioned on her blog about rude people and how people just don't seem to care about anyone else. Now I have my own two stories.
    On Sunday, DH and I went shopping to purchase the last of the Christmas presents. DH was off buying groceries with Aurelia, while I took Amelie to buy the presents. I was in Target looking at some toys in a very wide aisle. I had finally got Amelie to sleep when this very rude man ran straight into the pram and knocked a whole lots of toys onto Amelie. Thankfully she wasn't hurt, but she was frightened awake. The man then turned around and yelled at me to watch where I was going. Now I hadn't moved anywhere and the pram was pushed as close to the shelf as possible to get it out of the way.
    The second incident occurred at our at our local supermarket. Aurelia was upset and being difficult and Amelie was screaming so I had picked her up and was carrying her around. This meant that I had one free hand to push the pram. I was turning the pram into an aisle when this lady started to come out of the aisle. Now she saw that I was having difficulty pushing the pram, but she pushed her trolley into the pram and pushed it out of the way, so that she could get past. Now manoeuvring a pram singled handed is difficult at the best of times, but she made it all that more difficult when she pushed the pram is in the opposite direction.
    Now I know that at Christmas we are all busy and in a rush, but it's no excuse for being rude. I just don't know why people have become so rude and uncaring in recent times. I just hope this doesn't become a more common occurrence.

    Sunday, 7 December 2008

    Some Stitching pictures At Last!

    I was able to finish stitching my square for Cathy for the Little House Needlework RR. I have chosen the design from 'The Harvesters'. This one was a fun one to stitch.


    I also heard from Jenn that she has received her squares for Fair and Square Round #10. I decided to use a Christmas design from the Gift Of Stitching Magazine this time round.


    Design: Christmas Lace
    (from the Gift Of Stitching Magazine, Issue 23 December 2007)
    Designer: Ink Circles
    Fabric: 32ct Zweigart linen - Ecru
    Threads: DMC


    Unfortunately I have very little else to show as Amelie has been very unsettled again. She sleeps a little during the day, but from 3pm till midnight, she hardly sleeps at all. We have tried almost every technique to get her to sleep during this time with no success. I have even resorted to letting her sleep in my arms just to get her to rest, but she seems to wake within half an hour of falling asleep every time. They say that things usually get better by three months, so I am hoping that this happens with her as well. On Tuesday she gets her first round of immunisations, so I am sure that Tuesday evening and Wednesday are going to be very trying times.

    Monday, 24 November 2008

    Christmas Ornament Received

    I received my Christmas ornament for the Hooked On Exchanging Christmas ornament exchange from Georgie today. She has stitched me a beautiful design from the JCS ornament issue (I think?). I am not sure of who the designer is, I am still awaiting my copy of the magazine to arrive.


    Georgie also sent me some lovely DMC variegated thread, a colour I don't have and some lovely smelling soap. I collect little soaps, so this is a welcome addition to my collection. Thank you for this beautiful exchange!

    Sunday, 23 November 2008

    A little bit of stitching

    I can't believe how little time I have to stitch these days, Amelie is still having sleep issues. I have been drinking a herbal tea that's supposed to help her digestive system and enrich my milk supply so hopefully this helps her a little bit.

    I am glad to say that Jill has received the Christmas ornament I stitched for her for Hooked On Exchanging. I didn't end up using a very Christmassy fabric for the backing, because I just was unable to find a nice one that matched, but I think this one is just perfect.




    Design: Joyeux Noel
    Designer: Cat's Whiskers Design Studio (JCS 2007 Ornament Issue)
    Fabric: 28ct Zweigart linen - Antique Ivory
    Threads: DMC and Mill Hill Beads
    Finish: Pinkeep ornament

    I completed this little one as well. I needed to get some little finishes done, to get me back in the stitching groove.

    Design: Bee Hive
    Designer: Elizabeth's Designs
    Fabric: 32ct Belfast linen - Vintage Country Mocha

    Threads: Gentle Art Sampler Thread

    I have also completed my Fair & Square Round #10 squares, which will be posted tomorrow, so I should be able to share those some time next week. I have almost completed stitching my square for Cathy for the Little House Needleworks RR and I have been working on some Christmas ornaments for my girls and should also been able to share those in the coming weeks.

    I hope to get a few more little finishes done before Christmas, so in the new year I can take a trip to the patchwork store and purchase some lovely backing fabric for them all. That should be fun!

    Wednesday, 19 November 2008

    I've Been Tagged!

    Mylene has tagged me to share six things about myself.


    Here are the rules:

    1. Link to the person who tagged you.
    2. Post the rules on your blog.
    3. Write six random things about yourself.
    4. Tag six people at the end of your post.
    5. Let each person know that they have been tagged by leaving a comment on their blog.
    6. Let the tagger know your entry is up.

    So here goes, I am going to share six things about myself.

    1. I am a volunteer bushfire firefighter, but haven't attended a fire since I fell pregnant with Aurelia.
    2. I have given up chocolate and coffee (started when I fell pregnant) until I stop breastfeeding Amelie and I am in severe withdrawal already.
    3. I love to cook and collect recipes. So much so, that I had a special wall unit built into the kitchen to hold them all.
    4. I have a fear of moths.
    5. I have never held a driving licence and wouldn't know how to drive even if I tried, although I do know how to do basic maintenance on the car.
    6. My favorite food is crunchy Italian bread with some Gorgonzola cheese, olives and prosciutto.

    I have decided to tag the following people, because I would love to know something random about them:

    Kathy
    Margit
    Karen
    Nicki
    Beatrice
    Moni

    Thursday, 13 November 2008

    Fair & Square Round #10

    The other day I received two really beautiful squares from Jennifer for Fair & Square Round #10. I love them, because they are really colourful and use plenty of specialty stitches. I think I will finish these as a pinkeep, because a few months ago, I found this awesome ribbon, but didn't know what it could be used for as it was really quite bright. It will match these squares perfectly.

    Jennifer also sent me some gorgeous Silkweaver fabric as a baby shower gift.


    Thank you so much Jennifer, the squares are perfect and the fabric is beautiful and really appreciated.

    Today was my first trip out of the house since Amelie was born and it was quite a pleasant day. First I went to The Stitching Post and met up with Karen. I so rarely get to see Karen as she doesn't work weekends usually and that's when I usually visit. But today being Thursday, we were able to catch up and had a great chat.

    I used the gift voucher that Kathy had sent me and purchased the LHN chart 'Strawberry House' and some Crescent Colours threads. Thank you again Kathy, this was a perfect gift.


    I also purchased some 34ct cafe au lait legacy linen and 40ct antique white Newcastle linen, Gentle Art Sampler threads and some fabric for Christmas ornaments. Karen also gave me a baby gift of some charm squares. Thank you so much Karen, you are very kind.


    After that we went to Scenic World in the Blue Mountains at Katoomba for some lunch. DH then took Aurelia down the Scenic Railway, then a walk through around the valley floor along the Scenic Walk and then back up the The Scenic Cableway. She had a great day and I enjoyed the sunshine for the first time in many weeks.


    By the way, I must apologize for not commenting on anyone's blog for a little while. Amelie has been keeping me very busy with her erratic sleeping habits. Most days I feel and look like a zombie, but things are improving slowly. I will try and catch up this week, I hope!

    Thursday, 6 November 2008

    Floss Tag Exchange Received

    This is what arrived in today's post. I received my floss tag exchange from Mylene in the Netherlands. She has stitched a design from Little House Needleworks 'Blossoms & Blackbirds', my favorite designer. Mylene also included these wonderful goodies as well, including a chart from The Prairie Schooler ' Autumn Leaves' which is on my wish list. Some ribbon, which I so desperately needed, some extra floss rings and some Weeks Dye Works thread. Thank you Mylene for the wonderful exchange and for your generous gifts.

    Sunday, 2 November 2008

    A Little Happy Dance!

    I have been able to finally put the last few stitches in my baby sampler. Not that I haven't wanted to, but Amelie seems to want to spend all her time in Mummy's arms, when Mummy has a few minutes spare to sew and relax. Her sleeping has improved a little, so that every few days she sleeps in two hour blocks in the night and the same during the day. Last night I managed to get only 2 hours sleep, so my eyeballs feel like they are going to fall out of my head. Today Aurelia has emptied ever single box of toys in the lounge room and her room and pulled things out of cupboards and draws everywhere around the house. The house looks like we have been burgled. So much for a rest.

    Here is the baby sampler. A big thank you must go out to Clare who very kindly sent me this beautiful chart and another big thank you to Cathy who generously supplied me with the bunny button. I will be getting this one framed once I have a little time up my sleeve.

    Design: Bless The Baby
    Designer: Lizzie*Kate
    Fabric: 32ct Wichelt Lambswool linen
    Thread: Gentle Art Sampler Threads and Mill Hill Button



    Now that Kate has received her exchange items for the Hooked On Exchanging Floss Tag exchange, I can now show you what I stitched for her. I decided to stitch her initials for the floss tag and just the first initial for the fob.

    Design: Nature's Alphabet II (K & L)
    Designer: Elizabeth's Designs
    Fabric: 32ct Zweigart linen - Ecru
    Thread: DMC and Weeks Dye Works
    Finish: Floss Tag



    Design: Nature's Alphabet I (K & Date)
    Designer: Elizabeth's Designs
    Fabric: 32ct Zweigart linen - Ecru
    Thread: DMC
    Finish: Scissor Fob

    Thursday, 23 October 2008

    Look what the mail lady delivered!

    Hooray!! Finally my order from the ONS finally arrived. I purchased some GAST and NPS threads, a Mill Hill treasure, a Star De-Tailor and lots of charts.


    From LHN - Season of Growth, Season of Hope, Season of Plenty, Season of Rest, Autumn Harvest, Heart and Home Sampler, Needlebook and Fob and finally Chocolate Box.


    I also purchased my charts for the Me, Myself and I Round Robin. Their Song and Where My Heart Blooms by Blackbird Designs.

    Hopeful by Carriage House Samplings, Pear Orchard Farm by Barrick Samplers, Peace by Birds Of A Feather.

    The Good Neighbour by The Drawn Thread, Friendship Sampler by Hillside Samplings and Fruit of the Spirit by Plum Street Samplers.


    I also received a lovely card and gift voucher for The Stitching Post from the lovely Kathy. Thank you Kathy for your generosity, it's a wonderful gift and I am sure that I will easily find something that I need.


    I also received the missing button for my Lizzie*Kate "Bless the Baby" from Cathy. Thank you so much Cathy, I can now complete this design and I promise to share a picture as soon as it's finished.


    Finally, I received Barnabee's Bride, which I have been looking for around the place, for ages. I had been told they had been sold out and I was so disappointed. Then the day before Amelie was born, one appeared on eBay. My lovely husband bid on my behalf and purchased this for me. Isn't he a sweetheart.


    Thank you to everyone who has left such lovely comments regarding the birth of my beautiful daughter. I am truly blessed to have such wonderful blogging friends.

    Monday, 20 October 2008

    One week on..

    I have been home with Amelie for a week now and we are having trouble getting her to settle in. She sleeps relatively well during the day, but spends most of the night grunting and crying away in bed, keeping both DH and myself awake. The last few night I don't think I have had more than a few hours sleep. She wants to be fed every two hours and sometimes every hour, even though at each feed, she is completely full. I know that I had all the same problems with Aurelia, but a 2 o'clock in the morning it's had to recall those times. In a few weeks, I am sure that she will be fine and settle down quite well, but in the meantime it's really difficult to see that.

    I have been stitching a real lot in the last week and in hospital, but as they are all secret stitching, there are no photos. I have finished my stitching for the Hooked On Exchanging floss tag exchange. I have actually stitched a lot more than I had to, because a small floss tag looked like a very inadequate exchange item. I am almost three quarters of the way through my Hooked On Exchanging Christmas ornament exchange item as well. I am a little disappointed with it, as I was waiting on some hand-dyed threads to arrive from an ONS, but they still haven't arrived, so I have had to substitute DMC threads.

    Finally, my Lizzie*Kate 'Bless The Baby' is just waiting on one thread to arrive with my order and then it's completed. I made a big boo boo with this one, I ordered a JABC leaping bunny button to sew on it, but it's too big. I should have ordered the smaller one. To order another one, I have to pay too much postage to bother (postage is the same if I order a single button or a huge package of items). So I have a proposal, is anyone willing to swap a JABC bunny button (NH1009.L) for a smaller JABC bunny button (NH1009.S)?

    I am about to make a start on my Fair & Square Round #10 design. It requires some Vicki Clayton Hand-Dyed Threads, but with the Australian dollar so weak, the cost has become prohibitive, so once again I am going to have to substitute with DMC. So I apologise to my partner in advance.

    Monday, 13 October 2008

    A Picture At Last!!

    Firstly I would like to thank everyone for their well wishes. I am so grateful for having such wonderful blogging friends.

    I arrived back from the hospital this morning and I am so relieved to be home, I can finally get some peace and quiet. Aurelia is also very pleased that I am home as I think she has missed me so much. The birth went really well and was only six hours long from start to finish. Amelie somehow got all tangled up in her umbilical cord. It was wrapped around her arm, leg and around her neck like a scarf, but she was quite fine.

    Here is a picture of our beautiful new girl Amelie Capucine and a picture of my two girls having a cuddle.


    Friday, 10 October 2008

    The new arrival

    Folks, DH here. Suzanne has told me that you have all been waiting patiently for her to have the baby.

    Well, Yesterday morning at 6:15am Sydney time a little girl named Amelie Capucine was brought into the world. She weighed 3.54Kg (7lb-13oz) and is 49cm tall.

    Mum and Baby are both doing very well although Suzanne is exhausted as you would expect. I am on 2yo duty and having rings run around me. I respect Suzanne even more now....only a couple of days to go till she is back home...phew.

    A picture will probably be posted in the next couple of days.

    Cheers
    DH

    Wednesday, 8 October 2008

    Waiting.....

    Yes, I am still waiting for this baby to arrive. It's now over due and I have had enough! I saw the doctor yesterday and he seems to think it should arrive very soon, but that's what happened last time with my daughter and she was 10 days late. At least the house is all clean and all the chores have been done. This is leaving me with plenty of stitching time.
    I can't really show any of my stitching as I have been working on my exchanges for the Hooked On Exchanging Floss Tag exchange and Christmas Ornament exchange. I have finished the floss tag and am now stitching a few little extras to go with the package. I have selected the Christmas ornament pattern and hope to start it today some time.
    I have stitched as much as I possibly can on my Lizzie*Kate 'Bless The Baby' design, but I am still waiting on some of the threads to arrive. I suppose that's OK, as I can't stitch any of the details until this baby arrives anyway!

    Wednesday, 1 October 2008

    Another finish and a new start.

    Despite the yucky warm weather and my intolerable sweaty hands, I have been able to make a small finish. I decided to finish this piece off as a pillow and have sewn a crystal bead in the centre. I am still not sure of the bead, as I tried a button, but didn't have a button small enough to fit this design. I suppose it's too late to change my mind now.




    Design: Lovebird
    Designer: Midsummer Nights Design (freebie found here)
    Fabric: 32ct Belfast linen - Vintage Country Mocha
    Thread: DMC and Mill Hill Beads
    Finish: Pillow


    I have also made a start on my Lizzie*Kate 'Bless The Baby' even though I don't have all the threads for it yet. I made an order about a month ago and I am still awaiting the package to be posted, apparently there is a problem with an out of stock button. I have decided to use 32ct linen lambswool linen instead of 28ct, so it's going to be a little bit smaller and then I am going to finish it as a hanging ornament, so that it can hang on the wall in the babies room. I have no photo of this one yet, but I will post one when there is a good amount of stitching to show.

    Monday, 29 September 2008

    Baby Update!

    I went and visited the doctor today and he seems very happy with the progress of my pregnancy and the size of the baby. He is so happy, that he is going to leave me for another week. So I go back to see him next Tuesday, provided that the baby doesn't arrive between now and then. Hopefully it doesn't, as he is on holidays this coming Saturday, Sunday and Monday as it's the Labor Day weekend.
    Today the weather has cooled off, so I was back to my stitching. I should have a photo of another finish in the next couple of days.

    Saturday, 27 September 2008

    A little slack perhaps....

    I haven't been doing too much stitching this last week. The weather has turned warmer and my hands just will not stop sweating. Sweaty hands and stitching just don't go together!

    Instead, I have been washing, ironing and generally getting the house nice and clean for when the baby is born. The baby is due Monday week, but the doctor is considering inducing the baby next week some time depending on the outcome of the ultrasound that I had today.


    According to the ultrasound technician, the baby is a little smaller than average for it's age, but otherwise it is healthy and all it's organs are working as they should. She very kindly told us when to look away, so that we didn't accidentally discover the sex of the baby. I still want this to be a surprise and it would have been a shame if we had discovered it at this late stage.

    I have packed some stitching in my hospital bag, just in case I get some time to sew. Remembering my last hospital stay, I did have a lot of free time and I was climbing the walls to get home by the last few days. As I am going through the private hospital, the stay is generally for five days and this time round I don't need to attend any sessions on how to change nappies, bathe a baby or how to breastfeed. I also found last time, that I needed some sort of distraction to keep me awake for the last feed of the night. Maybe this is all wishful thinking!!

    I will post again on Monday and let you all know what happens with the doctors visit.