Sunday, February 28, 2010

My Weekend Tatting

Okay I said I'd show you today my weekend's tatting progress!  Here it is!  These will all be used in my FF postcard swap "garden critters" along with another project this summer.  These are some but I need lots more yet to complete it all!

Stitching Party!

It was lovely to be around others who LOVE their stitching as much as you do yourself and to enjoy the ambiance, supper prepared for you and finish off the evening with a few purchases at a discount!  Yes just lovely and I even tatted three dragonflies (will post those maybe tomorrow) in between the chatting.  Kathryn also prepared a make and take project and I came home with my very own Swarski crystal bracelet and I just love it (first time for me). 

And my purchases were a emerald crystal and charm scissor fob by Kathryn, a couple of metallic threads to try tatting the butterflies and dragonflies for some pizzazz and then lo and behold on the counter was the spring 2010 "A Needle Pulling Thread" magazine and featured on the cover is my dear friend Dale Anne Potter's Wrapping up Memories album - YAHOOIE!!!  So yes I now have my own copy and the next time I visit Dale Anne I'll take it and have her autograph it for me!!!  WOW I just love it when I see people I actually know being published!!!  Way to go my dear friend!

Then to make the evening even more special Kathryn got updates on the men's gold medal curling game - YAHOOIE!  Way to go Canada on winning the gold in curling, speed skating, another in snowboarding and a bronze in 4-man bobsled.  WOW!!!  Let's hope the men's hockey tomorrow will be a gold too - just play it clean but yet intense and do their best!!!

Thursday, February 25, 2010

More Tatted Butterflies

Yep while watching the Olympics and with teary eyes too as the girls hockey team win GOLD and Joannie Rochette wins BRONZE in ladies figure skating for Canada!!!  Talk about a heavy heart tonight!

Here are the newest attempts of the easy butterfly pattern but a pain with the metallic thread within the cotton and then the braided irridescent thread too.  All have either a metallic gold bead or a glass clear/irridescent/gold bead for the body.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Sugar Plum Fairy Block Finished!!!

YAHOOIE finally I have completed a very tardy block commitment!!!  Yes, I've caught up on the CQI Faces 1 DYB block for Leslie!  I sure hope she likes it and I'm sorry I took so long to catch up. 

Okay first off it was around Christmas and thankfully for Avon's "Heavenly Tree Topper" this year in helping generating my initial Sugar Plum Fairy idea.  Yep initially it was inspired by this lovely photo and then details from the Avon angel and my own creative ideas.

Okay, here's the block with my seam treatments - this time done first before the "motif" or in this case the doll is attached - not like my other attempt of stitching after the motif is attached.  Nope not smart at all!!!  And if you look closely I've tried to practice some BAS seam treatments here.

So now it's the "birth" of my Sugar Plum Fairy - known as Ms Aurora!  The reason for this is I started stitching her towards the end of the week and she was turned and stuffed at my Aurora Online Quilters gathering on Saturday.  So the girls and I thought it appropriate she be Ms Aurora!  And once home again I started turning ribbon into her skirt points - think they turned out not bad at all!!!

Okay, now the hard part began as I had to figure out how to attach her dress, head and staff - I can tell you it was not easy!  Then the MAJOR trial was trying to "tat" the wings!  I finally found a butterfly pattern and then improvised it for wings.  I wanted to attach a burgandy bow to her hair but it just did not look right so I've left it off and will send it with the package and let Leslie decide to use or not.

I decided that this block did not need any detailed patch embellishments so then I decided to audition various tatted butterflies for the two major patches but zippo - none appealed to me.  So I scrounged my stash and came up with this rose colour and quickly tatted up two smaller versions and I think that's it!!!

Ms Aurora will be mailed tomorrow to Leslie!!!

Here are the other four blocks that were made for Leslie:

Sunday, February 21, 2010

I'm Using a THIMBLE!!!!!!!!

Yes finally after a marathon of stitching (finally) I've kinda done in my poor middle finger and yesterday was just so SORE I could barely hold my needle, never mind stitch!!!  My friend, Ricky, sitting beside me at the Aurora gathering yesterday insisted I try the half metal thimble before I do in this poor finger!!!  When I got home I had forgotten my promise, and after a couple of hours stitching and numerous painful pokes I decided it was time to find my leather thimbles (worn but at least I could work with them) and also that half thimble (which in the past HURT on my finger) for another try.

Now I'm not sure if it's the weight I lost this past year (11.5 pounds) or the DIRE circumstances for my finger and more stitching yet to continue with, BUT I've stitched most of yesterday evening and this morning with this metal thimble and barely feel my pained fingertip!!! 

SO THANK YOU RICKY for your persistence that I try this baby again!!!  Much appreciated.

NOW I can get back to Leslie's Sugar Plum Fairy which is really growing up to be a beautiful "Aurora" - named after our group where she was born!!!  Pictures to follow when she's all finished - hopefully this week.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

One-on-One Postcard Swap

Well first off I missed signing up for a swap I know I would have really wanted to do "Garden Critters" but luckily I was able to "join in" and now am enjoying the preparation part.  And the Hearts swap is just about all finished.

BUT my CQI Valentine's/New Years swap along with my first FF One-on-One swap are finished and here's the cards.

Left to right:  Mine; Sheri D; Kerry L; and Maria S

I'll be posting the sent and received cards like this in future - great comparison and viewing opportunity.

2010 Gimli Quilters' Getaway

Yes I can say I enjoyed my weekend with my sister, niece and many quilting friends!  I took many pictures but for some reason did not give my camera to others to take pictures of me this time around!  For more Show n Tell photos are in my Webshots album.  Guess I'll have to wait until Sylvia comes in for MPQ Quilt Reflections Quilt Show in April and download some of her pictures. 

Well Pat did finish off last year's quilt class project and just has the binding and I hope a label left to finish.

Sylvia worked on her BQ quilt but I also did not get the stitched together photo, just the blocks laid out on the floor - totally weird.  BUT when she finished as much as she could do on the BQ she switched to a fun Heron landscape wall hanging, finishing one totally and got the second one bonded together ready for stitching.  She didn't expect to get as much done as she did - sometimes you don't - this time she did!!!

I basically worked on some of the checkerboard blocks of my still ongoing Moondance quilt (have 5 blocks to go yet) and took breaks to do some hand stitching on the Winter DYB blocks.  There's a constant tug towards doing some handwork no matter what plans I have and I find that so rewarding.

And yes I have now booked my "totally free" one night's stay at the resort for end of May and now have the Aurora retreat end of April just before that - lots to look forward to!!!

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Rita's DYB RR Blocks Finished

PHEW this was a tough one to get through for me.  I've just been too wiped out after work since I've taken on part of an ex-coworkers responsibilities and my mind is just churning till I leave.  Some days I'm just not up to stitching and yet time was a running out!  SHEESH!!!  I think I'll have to slow down on my swaps etc for a while as I've a few more here to finish off yet!!!

Okay first off I just LOVE Rita's blocks but was intimidated by the woven fabric for some strange reason.  So I started off doing all the seam treatments then worked on the stem stitched lines within the upper left flower and attached the stone in the centre.  While at my quilt retreat I found this awesome Christmas ornament and cut out the pine cone/branches and stitched that into place.  Then I worked on the silver sequins and beads along with the small star beads in another patch.  I then found a tatted snowflake pattern Elmo's Snowflake that FINALLY I was able to tat along with adding beads at the points for another patch along with my snowflake charms touched by a SRE bow and ribbons.  And last but not least I tackled the woven patch after finding my tree sequins and charcoal beads - I think that did it - along with some Colonial knots for snow falling.

Then I tackled the round robin block after finding this awesome beaded snowflake within my "Bead Embroidery the Complete Guide" by Jane Davis and after a minor "rippit" I'd say it turned out not bad!  After that I did the upper corner and attached another of the tatted snowflakes and then finished off both seam treatments.

Here are all the blocks stitched so far.  Top left is the RR block with my work; right is Margreet's awesome block with hand knitted flower; bottom left is mine; and bottom right is Lisa's with her amazing stitching!!!

Now it's packaged up and ready to fly to Karrin.  My next set has not arrived as yet so maybe I'll get more work done on Leslie's Sugar Plum Fairy block.  I hope so!!!

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Changes to my Blogs

Okay you may have noticed already that above the entries there are "Pages" listed with "Home" at the beginning.  See I've deleted My Creative Extras blog and now have those items in various Pages within this one Blog.  It's a lot easier to manage for me at least.  Yes I have saved all my entries along with comments posted for my benefit.  Sorry there are no comments for the various Pages, just within the main blog, unless I've missed something in the setup. 

2010 Olympics

I too have my own “kickoff” - my souvenir Olympic Coke bottle with changing light - it's on and in my window!!! This was from my viewing of the Olympic torch when it arrived here in Winnipeg on it’s cross Canada relay. I’ll try to remember to turn it on each evening while the games are on.

Okay I am sick and tired of all these "artists" putting their own slant on the anthem - WHAT - are they not proud enough of our song as it is – that they have to twist it this way and that! I find it disgusting period! And of all places to do it too – when the whole world is watching!!! It was bad enough starting off with the news telecast of the hot tub and bar activities! Yes such does happen, but do you have to flaunt it? I guess I'm just getting tooooooo old. And guess what, I’m not alone on some of these thoughts either!

“I don't think it would have been just her.......the producer or director would have had some input. Why do they have to turn our National anthem into an Americanized version?”  quote by my Canadian friend

“I agree. I don't like the "Hollywoodization" for national anthems. They should sing them as they were written. At least your Canadian national anthem is "singable." The range for ours is terrible. It is very difficult for most people to sing.”  quote by my USA friend

OMGG I'm in tears watching this AWESOME presentation of the First Nations People!!! That was just beautiful, even if I don't know much about their cultures. WOW!!! AND I LOVE seeing the smiling athletes entering the arena!!!! Ahhhh Canada has 206 athletes this year!!! I hope they all do themselves, us and Canada PROUD!!!! Ohhhh gosh a blubbering idiot and I'm glad I'm not Clara Hughes or I'd be just a bawling my eyes out with all the emotional feelings during this ceremony and probably trip over my own feet too!!! Hey, I just realized that the First Nations are still all there dancing while the athletes march in!!! WOW they are getting a workout!!!

OHHHHHH OHHHHH OHHHH that is just awesome how they are doing the Aurora Borealis  light show!!! WOW!!! OH MY!!!!!!!!!!!!! That inflatable puppet bear is LARGE - I'm speachless!!! OHHHHH MYYYYY this has even scary parts too!!! How the HECK are they doing this?????

I just realized something, we may not be China with mega dollars for a spectacular show, but boy oh boy Canada is doing it's own distinctive ceremony I think. And like the announcers said “without the volunteers, this would not be possible” – so my hat goes off to all of them. THANK YOU!!!

Okay I love the music and dance of the fiddlers and tappers, but I'm not at all thrilled with the tattoos or their get ups! Oh well it would be boring if we were all alike.

Now this segment of the “girl in the prairie winds” is something else!!! I wonder how many in the crowd (like me) are clutching their tummies with all this twirling and flying above the moving prairies scenes! But whomever that is up there, it looks like they are having fun! I love the scenic images that is for sure and the movement too - it truly portrays the wind on the prairies. How the HECK are they doing all this (yes I know there is a harness but you still have to perform and it's not Hollywood)??? I'm just in AWE!!! And I think the crowd was too from the looks of the panning cameras!!!

Okay, this may not be Bejing but it definitely is CANADA!!!!! My stomach can barely tolerate all those flashing lights from the crowd but Ohhhh what dramatics! That rising mountain and all the athletes traversing downwards is phenomenal!!! The choreography is spectacular!

That sure is some STAGE that all these flags etc rise from and fall and disappear into without incident!!! I can imagine how many engineering headaches these stage changes created but so far so GREAT!!!

“TRUE NORTH STRONG & FREE!!! WE ARE MORE!!!”  quote by my Canadian friend

Hey one of the flag bearers is Barbara Ann Scott - that is who my Mom wanted to name me after, but Dad did not like the Ukrainian translation, so I became Rose Anne!!! And Anne Murray too!!!!

OH OH, now I spoke to soon - the hydraulics have a glitch! OH NO and Catrinna can’t participate in lighting the cauldron!!! That’s too bad! But WOW that was some ceremony. Then Wayne Gretzky is taking the torch outside to the waterfront - I'm not sure if I would have liked to be Wayne on that ride in the rain, some of those citizens lining the way seemed a might toooooo enthusiastic. But yes it was something! A great start to the Olympic games! Now it’s up to all the athletes of the world to do their best!

Go Canada Go!!!

Monday, February 08, 2010

More Good News!

Previous Post on the home front!

Now you've probably just read about the retreat getaway and naturally the food was GREAT and I enjoyed myself muchly so was wondering if the scale had maybe gone up instead of maintained or dropped.  Well I've just come from my Dr apt for nutritionist and podiatrist referrals and asked if he'd weigh me just because.  {grinning I was when leaving}  See even with having more food portions than I've had this past year or so, I still managed to drop 1.5 pounds - YAHOOIE!!!

The good news is he's happy with what I've been doing and wants me to continue and maybe with some diabetic nutritional information I may even do better and postpone or even stave off diabetis within my life.  That would be awesome as I definitely don't do well getting needles or donating blood!!!

Gimli Retreat Getaway

Okay my weekend started Thursday morning with my sister Sylvia's arrival and then zipping around Winnipeg picking up or checking out various items on her list finishing off with supper at my niece Pat's before heading home and finishing my packing for the quilt retreat!  Friday morning I was packed up by 8:00 am and headed to my niece's to switch to the van then we headed out to Michael's before travelling to Gimli (maybe 1.5 hours from Winnipeg). 

Then we stopped into my sister's SIL and BIL for a cup of tea and a brief stop at the unique Dollar Store in Selkirk.  Then onto Winnipeg Beach to check out Keepers Quilts where I picked up some awesome northern lights fabric by Timless Treasure Fabrics Inc. (now I don't have to make my own up paperpiecing!!!).  Now we're off to the retreat and check in!!!

Well when we got there it was packed and space was very limited but Pat's friend had already garnered our sewing stations together after some rejuggling.  See some 80 quilters had arrived Thursday and had a table to themselves and some did not want to double up and share (as required) to make room for the 138 in total that were booked for the weekend.  Tracy did an awesome job and I think all were finally settled into sewing.

Anyways, I had taken my Faces DYB blocks all basted together so none got lost or dropped and the faces broken (Heaven forbid) along with Rita's blue blocks too.  WELL I was just inside the doorway in our room and talk about a show stopper they were.  Most of the quilters are amazing with their talents but they were all FLOORED with the Faces DYBs and especially with Gerry's Star Goddess and Leslie's Goddess of Light blocks.  Then they wondered why the 6th block was blank so I had to explain the process (they were appalled that we actually sent these in the mail sometimes around the world) and then they all looked at my idea for it and were shocked that I would try it.
I had to laugh as they kept coming back to see if I had finished Mother Earth yet and would have it for show n tell Sunday!!!  YEAH RIGHT!!!!!!!!!!!!!  Guess I'll have to bring it back next year finished for them to all see what can be done when creativity is unleashed - eh girls!!!

They also just LOVED the blue blocks and the delicate embroidery on the two finished blocks and also my embroidery emerging but most said it seems to slow a process for them to attempt.  See some stitched up whole quilt tops and onto another project within the three days and me - well I worked on 7 of my 9X12 inch blocks for my quilt (moondance which is like from 2004) and also worked on two seams on Rita's block.  I felt that I was not really producing and actually that was the busiest quilting weekend I've ever had - most times I've spent cutting out or hand work which takes forever. LOL!

Well Saturday evening we had some table and door prizes awarded.  The table Party Dress pattern by Heather Lair was won by Sylvia's friend Dale who now resides in Winnipeg and she was thrilled.  AND I won the second door prize and included is a one-night stay at the Lakeview Resort along with two totes and a book Cookies n Quilts by Judy Martin.  I think I'll be using that certificate to celebrate my birthday this year - great idea me thinks!!!
There will be another post including some quilt pictures but that'll take some time and I thought I'll just post this one separately.