Wednesday 26 March 2014

Stitch from Stash for March

I did think I'd had a slow month but actually I have achieved quite a few finishes - but they are mainly surprises or exchanges.

Here's my list

  • The Drawn Thread August - previously purchased
  • Monthly challenge - snowman Jura Point de Croix
  • Spring Exchange
  • Gift
  • Santa's House - previously purchased
  • Easter Exchange
  • 28 count ecru (spring exchange and easter exchange)
  • 14 ct aida (gift)
  • 28 count beige - monthly challenge
  • DMC colours as required for charts
  • ecru and green ribbon (spring exchange)
  • needlework fabric
  • snowman fabric
  • cream & pink cording
  • silver & gold cording 
 Additions to Stash 
  •  John Foster with fabric & threads - giveaway from Marsha 
  • Mini Rose kit - goody bag exchange from meet up
  • Dragon Floss thread - goody bag from meet up
These are some photos I can share - I can reveal much of my work in April as the spring and Easter exchanges are revealed then and my gift should have arrived.

Finishing items for my gift and monthly challenge

August - The Drawn Thread

Giveaway from Marsha

It's not long now until my Blogiversary - if you'd like to be in the draw just comment on this post (or my previous three) and include 'me please'

My overall spend for March was ....... ZERO ...... another no cost month !!

Sunday 23 March 2014

Meet Up and Giveaway

Yesterday was the spring meet up for Needlecraft Haven - we met here in Nuneaton in The Abbey pub where my son works. The new owner has changed the room slightly and repainted, it was so light an airy - perfect for stitching.

I arrived just after nine and set up the room before walking just across the road to the station to meet Julie, Angi and Gill. Lindsay, Tina and Lisa passed me on the way and when we arrived back at the pub my Mum, Angie and Lynn has also arrived making us a lovely group of 10.
All of us together
 (apart from the photographer hee hee)
Tina, Julie, Lynn, Lindsay and Lisa
 (along the back first)
Lynn, Lindsay, Angie, Gill, Angi and my Mum
 (going left around the table)

The meet up days are always so lovely - chatting, stitching, looking at each others work, goody bag exchange, book exchange and of course eating and drinking. It was great to meet Angi and Gill for the first time.

The Goody Bag theme this year was Nursery Rhymes - causing much brain power but the goody bags were all great fun. I made everyone a gingerbread man/woman with name tags and ribbon to fit the theme. Each man/woman had a raffle ticket and the corresponding ticket was placed on a goody bag. Whichever ticket your man/woman had you had that bag.

Goody bags and gingerbread people
Unwrapped people for the pub staff
Wrapped and tagged people for the goody bag exchange
My Gingerbread Man
 My goody bag was book heavy based on the nursey rhyme Mary Mary quite contrary. These are my interpreted goodies:

Mary Mary (two books by Mary Stewart) quite contrary (Marmite fridge magnets)
How does your garden grow (Jardin Prive chart with thread, fabric and backing fabric)
With silver bells (five silver bells) and cockle shells (a selection collected from our beach last weekend)
And pretty maids all in a row (a cross stitch book of maids and boys, a little like AOY)

Mary Mary goody bag - won by Tina
 Tina won my bag and I won Angi's which was on the theme of ring a ring a roses - it had a beautiful roses mug, roses tissues, roses kit, roses chocolates, Dragon Floss thread, roses notebook and a lovely card.

Roses Goody Bag from Angi
The book exchange is always fun as the books are wrapped so no-one knows what they are going to pick. I put in Delilah by Eleanor de Jong which I found so intriguing as I knew the Delilah/Samson story from the bible so really knew how the story would end. All the way through I was waiting and it was so well written it certainly kept me in suspense - Gill picked my wrapped book and hopefully she'll enjoy it  too. I picked Angie's book - 'To The Nines' by Janet Enanovich - an author I have not heard of,  it is always nice to read something new.

 Needlecraft Haven is a Yuku based forum and unless members pay contributions it does have adverts. At the meet ups we have a raffle and the money raised pays the contributions to keep the forum advert free. Everyone brought gifts for the raffle. Julie knitted a gorgeous Easter bunny and Lindsay made a chick bookmark. The raffle raised enough to keep the forum advert free until the autumn when we'll meet again and have another raffle :)

All the lovely raffle prizes
I managed to get quite a lot of work done on my Drawn Thread for August - I stitched the two tree trunks, flower stems and the daisy stitch flowers.

Drawn Thread - August

And in the last half and hour I did a very small amount on my Santa's Village tablecloth - just one window frame and the porch roof

Santa's House
We do have some stitching to do from the Meet Up as we have arranged another exchange. Everyone who wanted to join in wrote a few things about themselves in a card; three things they like about summer; favourite colour; favourite sweets and favourite smell. Those taking part then randomly chose a card and now need to stitch a coaster for that person using the ideas in the card. The coasters need to be with everyone by 30th June - I already thinking hard about my partners :)

The Meet Up was another lovely day with lovely people - thank you to everyone who came, most people travelling by train (Lindsay, Gill and Angi from quite a distance), and Lynn who drove down staying locally overnight. I'm looking forward to meeting again in the autumn

If you missed my last blog I am having a blogiversary giveaway at the end of March - to be entered just add 'Me Please' to your comment.

Tuesday 18 March 2014

Gift and a Giveaway

March has so far been an odd month for me - quite emotional both up and down. At the moment I have quite a few friends whose other halves are suffering, my very good friend Dusty being one.

Please say a prayer for those who are unwell and for those who are caring for them with worried hearts.

On a positive note I was the very lucky winner of Marsha's giveaway for John Foster. My parcel was here when we arrived home form a weekend at our caravan (more later) and it's gorgeous.

Giveaway from Marsha
Marsha included the chart - which looks amazing - all the beautiful hand dyed threads, Fabric Flair HD brown 32ct fabric and a beautiful hand made card with a stunning magnetic needlekeeper - thank you so much Marsha

I am going to have to review my rotation as I need to add in a few projects and maybe change my days around - although I will not be missing Barb's Wednesdays in the Parlour at Needlecraft Haven.

Last week in the Parlour I stitched Santa and some of his tree - it takes me ages as it is over one but it's growing slowly

Santa's House
My other stitching has been for the monthly challenge which is a gorgeous snowman design but for some reason I have struggled with it. It is finally stitched and I'm hoping to finish it later this week.

It's all busy with posting too as the Welcome RR is changing stitchers so I should soon have Lynn's to work on and it's Spring exchange posting. My parcel has been sent and I have received so I need to keep it safe until 30th March which is opening day.

As yesterday was St Patrick's Day my cooking skills were tested again. Hubby does not like stew so we had:

mussels in bacon and cider
potato cakes
Irish soda bread
mini Guinness cakes
black velvet cocktails

mussels and potato cakes

mini Guinness cakes

black velvet cocktail
We had a lovely weekend at the caravan - it did need quite a bit of cleaning as the sand had blown in due to the severe storms we'd had. Everywhere had a light layer of grit and all the mirrors/windows had a salty coating. It doesn't take long and it was a sunny day which helps. Afterwards we took Ruby along the beach to look at the ancient peat beds that the storms had uncovered - they are amazing.

Ruby loved the pools
I'm hoping to have a few more stitching photos next blog but it's hard when many of my items are gifts or exchange pieces. It's the spring meet up for Needlecraft Haven on Saturday which is always a great day.

The end of March is my Blogiversary and to mark my 8 years of blogging I'm having a little giveaway - the prize will be an assortment of stitching goodies from my stash as I am trying hard to stick to Stitch From Stash budget and I do need to decrease my stash pile.

Please add 'Me please' to your comment if you would like to be included in my giveaway.

Thanks for visiting - see you again soon :)

Tuesday 11 March 2014

Exciting news

Yesterday was a very exciting day for us - Philly was selected to be a Queen's Baton Bearer.

I have blogged about the day and all it's events on my other blog Aimetu's  please pop by and leave a comment as it will a great start to Philippa scrapbooking for the whole event.

Beth and Philippa

Sunday 9 March 2014

Such a surprise (big news added at the bottom)

It's been quite a busy week with quite a surprise. Marsha (Everybody Loved Clark) had a giveaway for her John Foster chart, gorgeous premium silk flosses, 32 count linen and a cute floss tag. It's a beautiful design which has been stitched by many stitchers since 1885. Here's Marsha's beautiful finish.

To my amazement, I'm still in shock really, I was chosen and John Foster is now crossing the ocean. I can't wait to start stitching on it, my rotation will definitely have to be changed. Thank you Marsha x

Although Tuesday was Pancake Day I did not have time to make any as DH and I went to De Montford Hall to see Richard and Adam. They were in Britain's Got Talent last year and are amazing singers. To everyone's surprise their Dad joined them on stage and the trio sang ' Bring Him Home' from Les Miserables - it was stunning, such a moving rendition. The video below is their audition piece for BGT - they are good :)

Stitching wise I have finished the Spring item for the Four Season's Exchange on Needlecraft Haven - we could stitch anything on the theme of spring so I stitched a ............. sorry you'll have to wait a while. It's all ready to post :)

I have started my next house on the table cloth - Santa's House. It doesn't actually look much but it is over one so takes quite a while. So far I have done the heading and the tree trunk - a little more this Wednesday.

Santa's House
The other stitching I've done is on the monthly challenge that Christine puts up for us on NH - unfortunately again I can't share. I've been first to finish the last two months but this design is a little larger so I'm not sure I'll be first again.

I have been busy in the kitchen, making my welsh cakes and bread for St David's Day, and cooking profiteroles for last night's meal as friends came over. This week I have no main cooking themes but I do want to practice a scone recipe I've seen and a week tomorrow is St Patrick's Day so I'll be busy then.

Today was the first really sunny day to DH and I took our first 'topless' trip in our new Street car - we popped over to MIL's as it's a nice country ride. It was lovely hearing the birds and feeling the sun on us as we drove along. It wasn't too windy and my hair did not get blown all over. We're both looking forward to many more topless trips.

That's all my news for today - I'm sorry it doesn't have much stitching in. I'll be blogging again tomorrow or Tuesday as we have some very exciting news which I can tell from 7am in the morning - keeping quiet has been so hard but only a few hours to go :)

NEWS: I can finally say - Philippa has been chosen to carry the Queen's Baton for the Commonwealth Games when it travels through Wales :-)

Saturday 1 March 2014

St David's Day

Diwrnod yn hapus dewi sant - Happy St David's Day to all my welsh friends. My daffodils have come out with perfect timing and I'm wearing my welsh dragon necklace.

Daffodils for St David's Day in
my grandmothers vase
This year I am cooking meals for special days/festivals so tonight we have potato and leek gratin with lamb meatball and homemade bread, followed by homemade welsh cakes. We brought back from Wales a cream liqueur for my Dad and he did not open it so we may do the honours tonight after dinner.

I have put up my mantle for March although it will change throughout the month as there are a few things/special days happening. At the moment it has my daffodils, candle burner, March (The Drawn Thread) and my smoking dragon. You burn incense inside it and the smoke comes out it's nose as if it's breathing fire.

March Mantle
As it's a new month we have a new Christmas Ornament Challenge on Needlecraft Haven which also means the gallery for last month's design is open. Last month Christine chose a beautiful reindeer design from Steekjes & Kruijes van Marijke - you can find the design here. The finishes are amazing, so many different ideas; here's my ornament.
February Challenge 2014
I have also finished the Poinsettia House on my Santa's Village tablecloth - well all but the white but I shall do all that at the end as it will be a long project. I took it to Julie's when I went for a coffee on Friday; she was amazing how big the cloth was and how small the designs are as I'm stitching them over one. We laid it on her floor to show the dimensions, Julie is either studying it very hard, or she's camera shy!
Santa's Village tablecloth
Poinsettia House
I have also finished my part of Ursh's Welcome Round Robin - her design is Birdhouse Welcome by Lynn Norton Parker. I'll be sending it onto Dusty next and Ursh will pass Lynn's onto me. I chose the second house as I loved the two hearts and it seemed appropriate for Valentine's month.
Ursh's Welcome Round Robin

It's been a week of birds and flying things really - we had an unexpected visitor in the garden on Wednesday - luckily Ruby did not notice. It stayed for quite a while before disappearing. It's very unusual as we live in an urban area - although one has visited before a few back.
Can you spot it?
Mr Pheasant happily roosting on the fence

The other flying thing happened today - Hubby !! I bought him a helicopter flight around Silverstone for his birthday back in December and today was flight time. We drove down early and were a little wary as there was thick fog everywhere but as we arrived at the race track the fog vanished with blue sky everywhere. The flight was only 5 minutes but he thoroughly enjoyed it.
Ready to go
All aboard

Pilot's view
Looking down
Afterwards to went into Towcester and had a lovely breakfast and a browse around the shops. It certainly was a beautiful sunny day. Now we're home it's time to start cooking.
Before I finish though I must add a thank you to Julie and her Hubby as when I popped over they donated a bottle of wine for the 100 Wine Tasting Challenge I'm doing for our scout groups 100th birthday - you can read all about it in my Aimetu's blog.
I cannot believe but my blog will be 8 years old at the end of this month - I will be having a giveaway for my blogiversary later in March, it will be from my stash as I am doing Stitch from Stash so watch out in my later blogs this month.