March 30, 2011

Random Afternoon Question

Something non-stitching related this week: What's your favorite ice-cream flavor and do you have a favorite brand?

It's been getting really hot in S. Florida, and ice cream is sounding good again. (I think we're the only ones experiencing warm weather though, since I'm still reading and hearing about snow in other parts of the country.) I always gravitate towards coffee or chocolate.... double double dark chocolate.... yummmmmmm!!! :D

There is this SFL company, SheerBliss, that makes the absolutest best ice-cream... which reminds me... I have a can in the freezer. Anyone for ice-cream tonight?? :D

March 28, 2011

Taj Mahal and Orchids

I had a crazy last week and as a result was really tired every night had didn't get very much stitching done. The weekend was better and here is the result:

I'm almost there!!! And when I get to this point, the little engine is chugging energetically along and if all goes well, this will be finished inside of a week!!!! WHEEEEEEE!!!

I took some orchid pics for my parents over the weekend and they're so beautiful that I just had to share them with you guys:

Not sure what the name of this one is. It's a hybrid from an orchid grower.

Phaelonopsis & Dendrobium

A view of the orchids from our kitchen.

March 25, 2011

What Do You See?

When I was stitching Japanese Garden Mandala, the corner sections, with partial colors stitched, was a constant source of fun for us. We'd come up with different scenarios of what it looks like but no matter what, I always saw the bald headed man and the spiders.

This is a picture of the paisley corners in Taj Mahal Mandala. I can't help but the face of a cheeky ape.... with his nostrils flaring and a funny grin and mustaches!!! Or it could be a hippo.... that would explain those nostrils better. LOL!!! The chinese part of me sees the beginnings of a chinese opera mask.

Hubby sees a bunny, with cute little ears... but try as I might, I just can't see that. That shows who's the sweeter of the 2 of us, huh? Although, I *DO* see a butterfly. ;)

What about you? What do YOU see? :D

March 23, 2011

Random Afternoon Question


Mine boils down to 2 main things:

1. Both hubby and myself have to like it. We discuss pieces that I want to stitch quite a bit. He is super supportive and even if he's not in love with something, as long as he likes it a bit, he'll say "do it." But sometimes, art perfectionist that he is, he'll point out something wrong with the picture, and then, no matter how I liked it before, that flaw is all I can see. LOL!!!! (I do this to my friends too.... they've grumbled at me to no end.)

2. I have to know where it's going to go when it's finished. If it's for me, I have a wall all picked out before I even commit to thinking about stitching it. LOL! Yes, I know, I'm weird. I find that it goes a long way in motivating me when I can envision what the finished piece will look like on the wall. If it's a gift, I try and make sure that I pick something I know the other person will like, ie. dropping hints or sending them a picture outright and asking if they like it. ;)

March 21, 2011

IHSW March Update

I have to confess, I didn't get to Hermit and Stitch too much this pass weekend. We went to a hockey game Saturday night with some friends and with chores and groceries, most of the weekend was gone. But I did hermit most of Sunday though. :)

For the bottom 1/3 of Taj Mahal, I've decided to stitch my usual way of finishing one color at a time. As a result, it's looking kinda haphazard, but I love not having to finish one section before starting another.

On another subject, Martina has released the material list for Chinese Mandala Garden!!!!!!!!!! *SCCRREEEEEAM* and I just ordered the kit from this morning. Ship date won't be till Apr. 25th, so I think I should be done with Taj by then. :D

Off to check on everyone else's IHSW Updates. :D

March 16, 2011

Random Afternoon Question

What mother nature has done in Japan has been devastating and heartbreaking. It is unimaginable what they are going through right now. Just thinking about it makes me tear up and watching the videos and seeing the pictures is nothing short of horrifying.

I was telling a friend yesterday, that while we discuss it with sorrow and disbelief, it is easy to go back to our daily lives... to live and laugh, to have food when we're hungry, to have a warm bed at night...

With the sympathy and empathy, came the realization of how tremendously blessed I am... in more ways than I can count.

I am blessed to have a loving husband. One whom I'm always thankful to God (and my mom.... that's the story for another day) for. One whom I know will be there for me no matter what. One whom I can laugh with, whatever the circumstance. One whom, after all these years, I look at and think "Man, he's so darn cute!!!" and he thinks the same about me!!

I am blessed with wonderful parents and parents-in-laws. Parents who showed by example how to live and who taught us the value of family. Parents who never imposed their views on us, but rather let us find our own way.... always there to support, but never there to judge. Parents who love us unconditionally and have shown that to us since the day we were born.

I am blessed with good health and great friends. I count myself doubly blessed to be able to appreciate the beauty that is around me. It never ceases to amaze me, when I'm out driving, to see the stunning blue and white of the Florida skies, or how the sunsets change from the sweetest pastels of lilac and peach to the brightest oranges and reds with the change of the seasons.

I am blessed with the everyday comforts that I sometimes don't even think about.... having electricity and running water, hopping on the internet, going home and flopping on the couch after a long day, SOCKS when my feet are cold!!... and the list goes on!

These are just the top 4 things on my list.

What about you? What are you most thankful for?

March 14, 2011

IHSW - March

In the last 2 months, we've gone from International Hermit and Stitch Day to International Hermit and Stitch Weekend and have had fun with the both of them. I think it's safe to say that most of us preferred the latter as it gave us more wiggle room to stitch on either day or both. I personally stitched the entire IHSW in February. :D

I've decided to use a sign up list for our ISHW's from now on. This makes it easier for us to all sign up AND clicky links to your blogs are set in place pretty quickly. All you need to do is type in your name and blog address in the widget below and you're all set. :D

Please feel free to mention March's ISHW on your blogs with a link back to this post. Like they say.... the more, the merrier. :) Looking forward to hermitting with you guys this weekend!!

March 12, 2011

2 Floss Tosses

It's been a great week for me on the stashing front. I'm not a big stasher, so these events are few and far between. I'm not a big started either, so those events are even more seldom.

However... I see, looming in my future, two oh wait... three new starts!! (I forgot about Chinese Mandala... how could I forget about Chinese Mandala???!!!)

When my parents were here, I told my mom I wanted to stitch her a Chatelaine. About perusing and deciding, we finally picked Hummingbird Sparkly Mandala. I've loved this since the day I saw it but it's difficult for me to stitch something when I don't have a place to display it. Well... that problem is no more as it will go on a wall in my parent's house! :D My mom picked Ray of Light for the fabbie. That came in the mail about 2 weeks ago. Europeanxs got all their silks back in stock (YIPPEEEEE!!!) and the kit came in the mail a few days ago. When Martina said that this baby is full of sparklies, she wasn't kidding!! The bling on this is going to be GORGEOUS!! I jokingly told hubby that mom might not get this after it's done. ;)

Next up is Petal Fairy by Mirabilia. She's one of my favorite Mira designs and I've been wanting to stitch her for a few years now. I blogged about a few fabric choices a while back and finally decided on Heather by Picture This Plus. The fabric is more than I can hope for... the lilacs and purples are soooo beautiful!!! I think I'm going to have a lot of fun stitching her.

I won't be starting either of these till Taj Mahal is finished, so I guess I should be stitching instead messing around on the computer, huh? ;)

March 9, 2011

Taj Mahal Garden - 2/3 Done

A day late, but nevertheless, here it is. :D I managed to finish the top 1/3 of the flower border over the weekend and it's glorious!! The colors are both sweet and vibrant at the same time and it's breathtaking in person. There were many an amusing moment as all sorts of "faces" appeared while the colors were being filled in in the top corner paisleys. Drats, I should have taken pics to show you guys. No matter, I will do so when I'm working on the bottom section.

2/3 of stitching done.

I also took a couple of close up pictures of the top corners. Notice the color variances in the paisleys and the minute differences in the flowers?

Top left corner

Top right corner

March 8, 2011

Random Afternoon Question

Since we had quite a bit of fun with the last Random Afternoon Question, I thought it might be nice to make this a weekly occurrence. The idea was to do this every Wednesday. You know, as something to look forward to for the middle of the week. Well... that was until I forgot to bring my camera today to upload new Taj Mahal pictures. Siiiiigh. So, I'm doing this week's Random Afternoon Question a day early.

I've 'stolen' (in quotes cos I asked for permission to steal it and Lonneke said, "Is is considered stolen if you ask for permission? HAHAHA!) this week's question from Lonneke. (Go check out her blog. She's working on the cutest HAED QS.)

In stitching your pieces, what is more important to you: The end result or speed?

For me, it's the end result. Both hubby and I are picky about the artwork in our home, and as such, I'm very choosy about what I stitch. It has to be something we both like, as I don't think it would be fair for him to have to look at something he dislikes everyday. ;) Fortunately, we have similar tastes. :D

When I stitch, I have a mental picture of what the finished piece will look like and where it will be displayed. Gifts are stitched with that intention too... I have no attachment to the piece other than the love and care I have for the recipient and the hope that they will love it.

I'm also a hardcore finisher. I hate to leave things unfinished and having more than 2 WIPs around drives me up the wall. (Which also explains too why I'm mostly a OAATer (One At A Timer).) Many of my friends know that I despair at the thought of a new start. LOL!!! I hate seeing that empty piece of fabric and mapping out where to start and how to proceed. But once I get to about the halfway point, things really speed along and all I can think about is the finish and how it will look. One of my dearest friends says I'm a "Destination Stitcher" and I quite like that term.

So, every stitch I do go towards that end result goal. Of course, speedy stitching doesn't hurt either. ;)

March 5, 2011

Taj Mahal Garden Update

So far so good on the crazy Taj plans. ;) All the specialty stitches in the top left and right inner paisleys are done!! I was pleasantly surprised to find out that there are some variance of colors in each one.

Top Taj Mahal with left and right paisley corners and borders.

Close up of top left paisley

Close up of top right paisley

Back to it I go. Have a wonderful weekend everyone and happy stitching! :D

March 4, 2011

TUSAL & Crazy Stitching Plans

I shall start with the result of an attained goal. Thanks to Terrace Arch, my ORT jar is looking happy. I had used a normal tapestry needle since I was stitching on 14ct aida, and the thread tails were quite a bit longer. :D The blues and purple at the top are silks from Taj over the last 2 nights.

Notice I mentioned "attainable" in my first paragraph? Notice the "crazy" in my title? I present to you the following... you be the judge:
Joyce: almost had a Taj picture to show you today, but I couldn't finish the specialty stitches
Brenda: awwwww, a partial would have been good to!
J: LOL!!!!!!
fingers crossed they should be done tonight
then I just had the flower border and if I'm really good, that top part wil be done by the end of the weekend
B: wow! you go!!!!
J: hehehehe
soooooo, I'm looking at the calendar..... this is the first weekend. if I *DO* get that done, that leaves me 3 weeks to try and finish the bottom 1/3 and 4 days to bead
I crack me up!
B: oh no
J: I crack you up too????? HAHAHAHAHAHA
B: yes, yes you do
but I am envious too
your stitching is like crack
What do you guys think? Doable? We *DO* have an ISHW in a couple of weekends. :D I could've swore I told myself no more crazy ass stitching plans after I failed so miserably on Fire.

March 2, 2011

A Random "Afternoon Question"

I've picked up Taj Mahal again and while stitching is going ok on it, it's not moving along as fast as I'd like. No one to blame but me though, as I've been catching up on DVR'ed shows while I stitch. There are some shows where I just have to listen to but pay most of my attention to stitching. But some like The Good Wife, Blue Bloods, Fringe, and White Collar (Matt Bomer... c'mon... who'd want to do anything else but watch him? LOL!!!), I find myself watching more than stitching. Might need to give the DVR a break tonight, and put on some music or stitch in silence. ;)

What about you guys? Do you watch tv or listen to anything while you stitch? Do you prefer having things going on or silence when you're stitching?