Monday, September 18, 2017

September Start

I have been starting a new project on the 17th of each month this year, and this month's start just arrived in my mailbox the other day.

Yes, I gave in to temptation, without much of a fight I'm afraid, and had the Silver Needle send me this year's Lizzie Kate Spirit of Christmas Mystery Sampler, with the beads, floss, and fabric. This mystery will come in three parts and WDW has a special floss, Oyster, and PTP dyed Heartland just for this series. The Oyster floss is a greyed lavender over-dye - very pretty and all the floss is set off nicely on the Heartland linen. I chose 32ct linen.

Here's where I left off Sunday evening, after having to do some reverse stitching - argh!! I like this first part of the mystery, and am excited about the coming additions.

On Red Velvet Inscription I completed the E square and got a good bit done on the F square.

This linen is 40ct and I'm using one strand of floss. I have such a long way to go that I am thinking about keeping it close and stitching one length of floss every day on this project. Perhaps I'll see it finished sooner that way!

Saturday evening Gary and I went to Frichette Winery's 4th anniversary party. Chazzy Green provided the music for the event - he's awesome on the sax. Good food, good wine, and good music!!

My schedule is getting filled again with the usual activities now that the new school year has begun. Yesterday we had our first choir practice, and today we started adult ESL classes. I'll be teaching Monday and Tuesday morning, level 3. This level reads at about a 1st grade level, and they need confidence and experience speaking English. This year I have Vietnamese, Kurdish (who also speaks Arabic), Burmese, and Iraqi ladies in my class. We had a great time this morning and I know we're going to have a lot of fun learning this year!

We got rain in the Northwest yesterday and with it much cooler temperatures. I heard Montana even got some snow. I hope it helped cut the fires down! At least the sky is blue again, instead of flat brown from smoke. Thank you for praying!

I hope you had a marvelous weekend. Now let's have a grand time this work week!

Thursday, September 14, 2017

Keeping Up

This little guy was in my charge yesterday morning.


It's getting increasingly more difficult to keep up with him as he's into everything he can get his hands on. His balancing skills are getting better and he's even taken a few steps, although crawling still gets him places faster. But he does enjoy playing with the toys and Max, our dog, is quite a distraction. I just love that little boy!

Beach Cottage is coming along nicely.

The words on the edge say, "Dreams are made of sand and sun." The colors Thea used in this design are delightful. But I'm putting this one aside for awhile. All the Victoria Sampler designs are gorgeous, but that entails a lot of detail. The instructions include several charts that focus on one aspect of the design, plus stitch diagrams, and a couple of pages of instructions for backstitching, and bead placement, and other stitches that embellish the design. I mark off each section of instruction as I go along. After a few days I'm ready to work on something simpler.

Digging into my WIP bag, I pulled out Red Velvet Inscription Sampler. It hasn't been out to play since March! So here is where I'm starting this play session.

I wish I could get the color rendering to be more accurate. Guess there might be some editing I could do on my phone, lol! But the fabric is so pretty, a mottled dusky pink. This square is the "E" which is located right under those flower motifs in the corners. It's quite a game to find the letter in each square.

That's it for today! Have a great stitchy day, my friends!

Monday, September 11, 2017

Thinking of Florida

As Irma bore down on Florida this weekend, I spent quite a bit of time watching the storm track and praying for the best. We have a nephew and his little family in the Daytona Beach area that was hit yesterday evening with the edge of the storm. They were well prepared, having boarded up their house and supplies in hand. Word from them this morning was all clear and all safe and sound! So I drank my morning coffee from the Orlando mug!

Gary and I visited Orlando in January on a business excusion. The meetings were quite beneficial, but the weather was not good, much to my dismay. I was so looking forward to warmth and sunshine after the harsh winter we had been experiencing.

I also worked on Victoria Sampler Beach House. The beach in the design is definitely more of a Florida beach than the Washington beach as one rarely lays out on the chaise to soak up the sunshine in Washington!

Here's where I ended my last session and what I accomplished over the weekend.

Victoria Sampler Beach House
I will now spend a day or two beginning the backstitching before moving on in the rotation.

This morning I spent a couple of hours helping greet refugees who are interested in coming to ESL classes - which start next week! We do a little bit of testing to place them in the proper class, but some of my students from last year came to register and we didn't really need to test them as I was pretty sure they needed another year of Level 3 - and I'm reluctant to release them to someone else as we had so much fun together last year!

So another week is upon us - let's make it a good one!

Friday, September 08, 2017


The weather inversion that has kept the smoke trapped in the Northwest has begun to lift and the skies here are clearer - the health risk lower. It is such a relief to get some air movement! This does not mean the smoke is gone, or that the fires are out, just that it's better and we'll definitely take better!!

With better air quality I was outside this morning doing some watering and found a couple of surprises.

I found a beautiful new bloom on Lady of Shallot - are those colors glorious?!

And right behind her is an iris in second bloom!

So much fun! There is about a ton of deadheading and removing of spent blooms that I need to do. I love the phlox mixed in the garden, but when it's done blooming, it just needs to come out.

Coffee Quaker has been out to play all week and here she is at the end of her rotation.

I think I made some good progress and am just over half way done!

Have you seen the Starbucks You Are Here series of mugs - the ones that Michelle Garrette, Bendy Stitchy on Flosstube, features all the time? We have a small collection around here that we've picked up here and there on our travels. Our youngest daughter has worked at Starbucks for a couple of years, so we have an appreciation for that company now. :)  Anyway, I really like the size, shape, colors, just everything about them and look forward to choosing a new city or state each morning and thinking about the trip that took me there.

This morning I used Vancouver Island.

The city of Victoria is on Vancouver Island and that's where the Victoria Sampler retreat is, so I have many wonderful memories of several retreats, wonderful friends, and beautiful stitching!

As Hurricane Irma bears down on our friends in Florida, let's all keep them in our prayers and be ready to help in the recovery!

Tuesday, September 05, 2017

Stay Indoors!

We've had a horrendous time with disasters here in the U.S. lately. H. Harvey devastated Houston and the surrounding area, H. Irma is Category 5 and scheduled to hit S. Florida in a few days. We are all sympathetic to the people in Texas and sending prayers and dollars for their restoration. What hasn't been much in the news is the wildfires that are devastating the Northwest. Montana has been especially hard hit and the fires there may keep going until the snow flies. There's a fire about 150 miles from my home near Cle Elum, Washington, and now the Eagle Creek fire in the Oregon Columbia River Gorge has jumped that massive river over to the Washington side. That's just a few of the fires. It's bad here folks. Highways are closed, evacuations have been ordered, buildings destroyed in Glacier Park and other places, and firefighters have been working endlessly.

The air quality is rated unhealthy to extremely unhealthy and this is what it looked like out my window this morning:

No recess or any outdoor activities for the school children. In fact, no one should be taking any exercise at all outdoors. Those who struggle with respiratory issues are really having a tough time of it. So, as stitchers, we all have a fall back activity!

I was able to finally get Daisy Sampler by Country Cottage Needleworks finished.

Then I brought out Coffee Quaker for a turn in the rotation.

Worked on the sides of the design and made pretty good progress over the weekend.

I'll keep it out for another day or two, then move on to another project.

The air wasn't too awful yesterday morning and I was able to get some of my garden beds cleaned up and trimmed. Since I couldn't continue with that job this morning, I came into the office a little early - it's payroll time once again.

Keep the Northwest in your thoughts and prayers. A good rain (without lightning) would help things right now!