Wednesday, 15 February 2017

Valentine's Day

Valentine's is a special day for Hubby and me as we got engaged on February 14th 1986. We always send each other cards and although we say no presents my lovely Hubby always surprises me - this year is no exception.

But before I share our Valentine's Day it was also exchange opening day for the Valentine's Exchange on Needlecraft Haven. This year it was a non-stitching exchange, we had to buy our partner a pair of pink or red socks with hearts or flowers design, a card and two skeins of thread to match the socks.

I used my orts jar to pick the partner details - it's always a fun thing to do when organising an exchange. I put everyone's name on apiece of paper and also on my list - starting at the top of my list I picked a paper and whoever's name was on was that persons partner.

Needlecraft Haven members taking part in
our Valentine's Exchange
Folded in my orts jar ready to be picked
 My partner was Mary and I bought a lovely pair of socks with love birds on and pink hearts. Unfortunately I knocked a cup of coffee over and of course it went over the socks; so they became mine and I bought Mary another pair. I was going to buy the same again but spotted a lovely pair covered in roses.

There was no requirement to stitch anything but I did stitch Mary a card, just a simple one and included a few choccies as 2017 has been a tough start.

My Valentine's gifts for Mary 
My parcel arrived in time for Receiving Day - we've started doing this, it's about a week before Opening Day and hopefully ensures everyone has their parcel. I knew who my partner was as I had organised the names but it is always exciting to open a parcel.

Inside was a lovely wooden card from Julie - I had not seen one of these before, they are very effective. The socks are beautiful but had me rolling around in laughter - they are the love bird socks I spilled coffee on - just perfect, thank you Julie.

My Valentine's gift from Julie 
I haven't baked anything for Hubby this year as I went to M&S and bought one of their £20 meal deals - starter, main, side, dessert, wine and chocolate !!

We always have a bottle of our favourite champagne on Valentine's Day so I also bought some nibbles to go with it. The table is laid so now Hubby is home we can sit down, enjoy the bubbly, enjoy our cards and Valentine's decorations I always put out and later on enjoy our M&S meal.

Our side board with our Valentine's cards 
Valentine's Mantle
Table's ready 
M & S meal deal
Nicolas Feuillatte our favourite champagne
And finally we'll be having coffee and the M& S chocolate hearts - coffee served in the tiny espresso cups we bought in Athens on our Honeymoon and the chocolates are served on the beautiful lace plate my Mum made us for our 25th Wedding Anniversary.

The metallic couple is actually a wine holder I bought Hubby for our 25th Anniversary - yesterday he surprised me with a new edition - it's just perfect, I'm a very lucky lady.

I hope everyone had a very happy Valentine's Day x x x  

Sunday, 12 February 2017

Anniversary gift

Our friends had a party the other Saturday to celebrate their 25th Wedding Anniversary. As a little keep sake I stitched this sampler for them.

25th Anniversary gift for Debbie & Carl
I have two exchanges that I have stitched for but as yet cannot share, although as one is for Valentine's Day it won't be long before I can.

I have been catching up on my Round in Circles SAL from 2016. I didn't get chance to complete October, November or December but have managed to complete the first two and I'm working on December so they will soon be all done. I have stitched them all in the same colours, at the start of 2016 I wasn't really sure about how to finish them but I think I have now decided. I'll see how my idea looks once all twelve are stitched.

October - Round in Circles
November - Round in Circles
Wishing everyone a happy Valentine's Day full of friendship and love x x 

Tuesday, 31 January 2017

January Challenge

Every month on Needlecraft Haven we have a challenge piece, usually a Christmas theme. Our lovely Havener Christine choses a freebie chart each month for us to stitch and uploads a Gallery at the end of the month for our photos.

January's chart was a cute New Year penguin, it's nice to have a momentum as each year changes. You can find the details of our Challenge on the forum Needlecraft Haven - if you are not a member already send a request stating you read about it on my blog

The forum is quite busy at the moment with our Valentine Exchange under way and our Easter Exchange sign up open. Being February 1st there will be lots of changes tomorrow too, one of which will be month two of our Four seasons' SAL stitching on spring. I've finished stitching and just have to make it up, all ready then for when the gallery opens in March.

I have just about finished a gift for early February and my needlecase for the Meet Up exchange. Talking of which it will soon be time to arrange our spring Get Together.

I've just written up my wine/travel blog Aimetu's about our three special meals last week - quite a journey all told.

This year I'm aiming to read 50 books, I've just finished my 4th which was The Miniaturist by Jesse Burton - very intriguing with all the various characters.

I'm not sure what I'll pick up next, I do have a few paperbacks I want to read so I can pass on and make some space on our shelves. I hope your January was a good one and that February will be too.

Monday, 16 January 2017

My first 2017 tree ornament

I've decided for 2017 my theme for the church tree festival will be 'Winter Wonderland'. Lots of deigns of snowy houses and snowmen, all stitched on blue fabric.

I have sorted through my stash and found a nice variety of fabric in various shades of blue and different count sizes.

I have all the Just Cross Stitch Christmas magazines so will be browsing through for designs to use. My first ornament was from the 2009 magazine - It took a Miracle by Still Stitching with Susan

I'll be finishing them all at once later in the year when I have a sewing machine and will get my sewing machine out. 

I have also finished stitching the Needlecraft Haven Meet Up exchange piece, this time it's gone a needlecase. I'll be making it up later this week but can't share any details for a few weeks until opening day. 

Another exchange I can't share just yet is the Valentine's Exchange, it's not a stitched exchange, just a bit of fun. 

I have also stitched Needlecraft Haven's first monthly challenge of 2017. I'll be finishing it later this week and can reveal it at the end of the month. 

Tonight I'm going to start my spring design for the Four Season's SAL - not a bad start to 2017 

Monday, 2 January 2017

First finish of 2017

Hubby and I are still unwell so plenty of sofa time which means plenty of stitching time !!

Every year I save my orts in a bonbon jar my MIL bought me from a second hand shop a few years ago. I love glass and this jar really caught my eye. It looks great as the year progresses and it gets filled with all my orts, their different colours shining through.

2016 orts
The jar is not so full this time so I guess I didn't stitch so much in 2016 - hopefully 2017's jar will be a bit fuller.

I need a full jar as I use the orts to fill an ornament. Every Christmas/New Year I stitch an ornament for the tree and stuff it with the orts. With being sofa bound yesterday and today I have stitched and finished my 2016 orts ornament.

It's Blackwork Journey by Yuletide Memories and is in the 2016 Just Cross Stitch Christmas magazine.

2016 orts ornament
As today I am still on the sofa it gives me a great chance to start 2017 stitching and start filling my jar!!

Saturday, 31 December 2016

Happy New Year

I was going to type more and do a review of 2016 but Hubby and I have come down with a cold (very achy and shivery) and I just don't have the energy :( 

However I do want to wish everyone a very Happy New Year 

Monday, 26 December 2016

Christmas Thank You

Thank you so much to my lovely friends and family for my gorgeous gifts. I love the build up to Christmas, putting up the decorations and adding gifts to the ever growing pile under the tree and then of course giving them out on Christmas Day. Giving gifts is one of the many pleasures in life.

This year I have been very spoilt by my super Hubby, a Swarovski crystal bracelet and a Radley watch, I'm one very lucky lady.

Over the last few weeks a few parcels have been arriving and my gift pile under the tree slowly growing - I really appreciate everyone's kindness especially as it's getting quite expensive to send items in the post.

Thank you Julie, Christine, Angi, Jane, Jeanette, Barb and Gill for my lovely gifts.

and thank you Brenda for my lovely fabric, threads and notebook - all the way from Canada.

I hope you all had a great Christmas and are enjoying Boxing Day (St Stephen's Day) - we'll have a quiet family day, a good time to listen to the fabulous cd from Philly. Michael bought us a new bluetooth speaker so there's not excuse now not to play my cd again and again - can you guess they are a favourite of mine !!

Enjoy the remaining days of 2016 - plenty of time to finish up all those Christmas goodies, turkey sandwich anyone ?