August 31, 2013

52 Weeks of Happy - Week 35

My happy things for this 35th week of the year:

 1.  Learning a new craft.  I took a punchneedle class on Sunday and finally put to use the pattern and needle I'd purchased about 5 years ago.  Hopefully, as I punch more, my technique will improve.  Just the last color to go and I will be read to tackle the finishing part. 

 2. The end of August brings the biggest issues of all the fashion magazines and I got my Vogue issue in this week's mail.  I love to browse through them and daydream about what I'd buy if I had thousands to spend on clothes!

3.  Fall means new nail polish collections as well.  This is the color I spotted in my fashion mags called "For the Twill of It" by Essie.  I wasn't able to capture the color in the photo but it's a really neat combo of dark green and purple and it looks different depending on the angle. 

I gave myself a manicure while watching the start of college football.  That's my #4 for the week!  OSU won it's game and Alabama is on the way to winning it's game as well. 

It's a long weekend here and I'm planning to enjoy every minute.  I hope you had great week!

August 25, 2013

52 Weeks of Happy-Week 34

This is week started with a bittersweet bit of happy.  I love fall and the changing of the leaves and seeing these red ones during a walk on Sunday was a bit happy and a bit sad because it means summer is ending.  I've noticed a few trees on the way to work that have colors starting to turn and we've had cooler nights which means fall is a lot closer.
I was happy to make it to knitting group two weeks in a row because it allowed me to finish the leg and start working on the heel flap.  I'm hoping I can make some quick progress on this so it's ready to wear once the weather turns colder.
Saturday I went to the Portland Sidewalk Art Show.  It was the first time visiting this great show.  They close off the main street through downtown Portland and artists set up along both sides of the street and down into Longfellow Square.

The weather was just perfect for being outdoors - cool breeze and warm sunshine.  I was able to purchase a painting for a friend painted by a coworker and I picked up these two small oils for myself.  I am hanging them in my bedroom.

And I'm wicked happy with the progress I'm making on my Christmas at Hawk Run Hollow piece.  For whatever reason, I am finding it very hard to put this piece down!  That bodes well for a quick finish I hope.  I'll try and get a better picture soon but I don't want to put down my needle!

Hope your week was a happy one!  It's a long weekend coming up and I'm taking Friday off so I should be able to get a lot more done on this piece.

August 19, 2013

IHSW Progress for August

I made great progress on Block 8 of Christmas at Hawk Run Hollow this IHS Weekend.  As you can see, I decided to go with blues for the lady's dress based somewhat on the colors in block 6 which has the skaters on the pond. 

So far, I'm liking my color choices.  I am really enjoying stitching on this block so I hope to have a lot more progress to show you this week depending on how things go.

I hope you had a great weekend and if you participated in IHSW, I'm off to tour the blog-o-sphere to see what everyone has been up to! 

August 16, 2013


All those letters together add up to the potential for a great weekend if you ask me!  It's an International Hermit Stitching weekend and I plan to get as much time in stitching as possible this weekend.  I have some blanks spots to fill in! 

What are your plans for the weekend?  I hope you are off to a great start whatever they are. 

August 12, 2013

Long past due Happy Dance

Yesterday, I finally finished square 7 from CHS Christmas at Hawk Run Hollow.  Woohoo! And boohoo to blogger for refusing to upload correctly.

I'm afraid to look back to see when I started it but it took a really long time to finish.  I am not a fan of the colors in the next block (the carolers) so I'm not sure if I will start that or go to block 9 and figure out what colors I want to use for the carolers.  It's the lady who I'm not enamored with - I don't love the greens of her dress.  I'm thinking blues but need to experiment a bit more before deciding. 

August 11, 2013

52 Weeks of Happy - Week 32

This past week's happy moments occurred mid-week and down on Cape Cod.  I took a lightening fast overnight trip down on the 6th and 7th and they were perfect and filled with lots of great moments.

Shopping in Chatam - a mostly annual pilgrimage made by the whole family.  This is the front of a store called the Mermaids on Main.  It was a perfect day, sunshine, 70s and virtually no humidity.  Not very crowded either which was nice.

We went to the beach in Orleans in the afternoon and stayed until after 7pm.  It was my first beach day this summer which is hard to imagine given that it's August 11th already.  I have to try and get a few more in before the season ends.
Dinner included a homemade birthday cake and some lovely gifts.  Nothing better than spending the day with family and close friends and celebrating a birthday.

I headed home on Wednesday and made trip to IKEA.  It wasn't exactly on the way home but close enough that I could justify making the stop rather than driving down specifically to see the store.  I'm so glad I made the stop because I was less impressed than I expected.

The displays and prices are all enticing but I ended up leaving empty handed.  Not sure why but there didn't really seem to be anything I truly needed or couldn't find at Target.  I did bring back the catalog for future reference but I don't feel the need travel almost 3 hours to shop here.

Hope you had a great week.  The weather is gorgeous this weekend so I'm going to take advantage and get outside!

August 9, 2013

August TUSAL

I did not get too much added to my TUSAL jar over the past month but there were contributions from the PS Halloween piece and a few strands of silk from my CHS Christmas at Hawk Run Hollow piece which I worked on this past Sunday.  I'm hoping to add a lot more to my jar this month.  I hope your jar is looking full these days!

August 5, 2013

Ornament Exchanging

I identified one of my happy things from last week was mailing out an exchange ornament.  I did a small "Christmas in July" ornie exchange with a private group I belong to.

This is the gorgeous BBD stocking I received from a friend in Germany.  Her work is perfect and it's hanging above my computer right now because it's too pretty to save until December.
We included a fat quarter of Christmas themed fabric and a holiday recipe. Here is my complete package.

I sent to a friend in Virginia.  It took me a ridiculous amount of time to do the finish finishing and much chaos ensued.  The finishing called for sticky mounting board but I didn't have any.  I tried using foam core board wrapped in batting but was not happy with how it looked.

So I made a trip to Michael's and of course, after much futile searching throughout the store, first by myself and then with a sales associate, they did not have any/no longer carry the product I was looking for.  I hate when no one tells me something has gone out of use/fashion.

When did this happen??  Are we getting "lite" craft stores these days that don't stock useful products?  Granted I haven't wanted that kind of product in years but I'm sure my finished ornament would have looked much lovelier had I had it to use.

So back I went home and used my original method.  I still wasn't pleased with the finish but I forged on.  The one thing that did go right this time was making the twisted cord with my cording drill.  Perhaps it worked because I used actual directions from the JCS ornie issue??

Here is my work space after finally finishing the finishing.

The recipient was very, very kind about my finished piece and I so appreciate her generosity.  Her finishing is always flawless so maybe I will travel to Virginia the next time I have to do finishing.  I bet her craft stores carry sticky mounting board!
I forgot to take a photo of the fabric I sent but it was red snowflakes on a cream background.  She is a quilter so I looked for something that was relatively neutral. 

August 4, 2013

52 Weeks of Happy - Week 31

Quick version today because I'm itchy to be stitching rather than messing around on the computer.
1. Mailing out a finished ornament exchange package - only  a week late due to moving.
2.  Getting back to regular exercising and bike riding - 4 times this week!
3.  Seeing on of these on the bike trail at the end.  So unexpected and just gorgeous.  The photo is from since I didn't have enough time to stop and whip out my iPhone before he flew off into the trees.
4. Unexpected bounty from a co-worker's garden.  Fresh zucchini and it was so yummy steamed with a little butter.
5. Finally getting to sit out on the porch and knit.  It was quiet, cool and refreshing!

August 2, 2013

Some Spooky Stitching

This week I've been working a bit on my PS Halloween piece.  Here's the last photo I could find from the end of May.
And where I am as of last night's stitching.  This is a fun stitch but I think I'm going to pick up a UFO as it's UFO stitching Sunday on the 4th.