Friday, October 12, 2012

October 12, 2012

The Monster Blanket is finished - hallelujah!

It's called Monster Blanket because of this:

That's my three seater couch under there.   A counting mistake at the beginning of the project turned it into an incredibly long blanket.  On the plus side, it will cover all of you when you are lying under it.  No having to decide if you want your shoulders or your feet covered.  It can also cover two people sitting at opposite ends with no tug-of-war match.  The dog can even sit in the middle and everyone still has enough blanket.  So it's all good.  I'm still happy to be finished it though, it was feeling like the never ending project.  I already have the yarn for my next blanket, and you can believe it when I say I will be extra diligent about my counting at the beginning!

Thursday, October 11, 2012

October 11. 2012

A few things I worked on in September and October.  I can't decide how to finish the cross stitch just yet; am trying to think past framing or small pillows.

This burlap and felt banner will go on my mantle next Thanksgiving.  Fingers crossed anyway!

My variation on an ornament from Glendon Place in the JCS Halloween issue:

A freebie from Sullivan's Floss.  The green fabric is actually much brighter than what shows here.

A free design from Plum Street Samplers.  I finished the stitching just before Thanksgiving Day and meant to post it, but the weekend was just too lazy relaxing!

'Gather' by the Trilogy.  I made fimo leaves but I like these better that I just found the other day.  I still need to stitch them on.

Some holiday fimo pins I have been wanting to try for a very long time.  It was a fun way to spend a sunny afternoon at the kitchen table.

The Monster blanket is almost done.  I'm not feeling well today so I plan on curling up under it and sewing in the rest of the ends and adding a quick border to the two short ends.  Libby is going to lose her cozy spot!

Sunday, September 23, 2012

September 23, 2012

A few fall things.

It's taking me much longer to get my stitched pieces finished off than I anticipated, so I only have two to show today.
The first design was a freebie by Nouveau Encore Designs.  I was just at the site and it appears it is no longer available, but there are still some lovely free charts there.  What I like about the designs are that they have a very French feel to them.  The designer, Stephanie, uses motifs from centuries old French samplers to make up her work.

My second finish is an excerpt from a design in a Cross Eyed Cricket booklet called 'Falling Leaves'.

My baking attempt the other day at pumpkin scones was a success.  I tweaked a recipe I found here to come up with my own version that has an apple cider glaze.  I had one (okay two) fresh from the oven with some maple spiced coffee and it was de-lish!  They certainly didn't last very long.

Enjoy your day!

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

September 19, 2012

Do you remember these I posted a long time ago?

I picked these up off the side of the road in July.  I swear our neighbourhood has the best garbage anywhere!  We need new kitchen chairs and these seem to be much studier than what we've got.  I would have been happy to leave the stained finish and just recover the seats if all the chairs were brown, but as you see there is a rogue blue one.  I started off quickly enough with sanding two of them and applying paint and primer.  The problem was, it was so hot this summer that the glossy paint never really dried well, and you could always see brush marks in the paint.  It was also going to take three coats of paint plus two coats of primer for each chair.  Ugh!  Not the way I wanted to spend my summer.  So I made the decision to spray paint them.  Each chair took one full can can of primer and one full can of paint.  I used 'Heirloom White' by Rustoleum.  For the seat cushions I used fabric left over from my kitchen curtains.

I'm happy with how they turned out and I like the creaminess of the Heirloom White better than the B.M. Cloud White I was originally going to brush on.  My free chairs ended up costing $50 due to the paint, but I still consider it a good deal for four "new" chairs.

Our breakfast nook got an unplanned for makeover in the last two weeks.  The old blinds were breaking down so I picked up some new wooden horizontal blinds at Zellers close-out sale.  I thought white may have been a better choice but I love how the brown wood makes it feel warmer.  I also found a new light fixture at Home Depot on clearance.  It makes such a difference in there I can't believe it.  The whole space just feels cozier I think, just in time for fall:)

Speaking of cozy, I just finished two projects I can show you.  The first is a flannel quilt for the newest little arrival in our family.  I hope he enjoys having tummy time on it.

In addition to the blinds I picked up at Zellers close-out sale I also picked up lots of new yarn at 50% off.  I made this wrap out of a soft and bulky yarn by Red Heart yarns.  The colour is Antique Blue and it's a lovely tweedy looking blend.  It looks much better in person!  I think what I liked most was that I crocheted it up in four days.  That felt really good:)

I have also done a fair bit of cross stitch but I want to finish them up before I post them here.
I'm off to make pumpkin scones as I have been seeing them all over blog-land lately.  I think it must be a sign:)
Thanks for visiting!

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

August 7, 2012

Our long weekend zipped by and honestly I don't think I could account for my time too well.  Mr. Crafty World was on call all weekend, so we couldn't venture too far from home.  I puttered around my sewing room a bit; I didn't sew anything but I made a bit of a dent in organizing my fabrics.

I did get some cross stitching done however, and have a fully finished piece to show you.
This is a quick stitch from new JCS Halloween issue:

I finished it like they did in the magazine with the beaded border.  I used a small scrap of some starry fabric to finish the back:

It was really fun and I have started on another ornament from the same issue.  I brought out all of my fall and halloween charts in a bout of wishful thinking of all I would like to  accomplish in the next few weeks.  I know I won't get a fraction of the charts stitched, but it's fun to dream anyway!


Friday, August 3, 2012

August 3, 2012

Today was house cleaning day and that always puts my world to rights.  Despite my grumbling every time I vacuum (it must be the high pitched noise that makes me crabby), I do enjoy cleaning my house - mostly because I have such a lovely house to clean:)  Anyway it is a good cap to the week and I always feel good that things are clean and orderly for another few days at least!

(Libby on squirrel watch)

We have celebrated two birthdays here in the last two weeks.  Both of my babies are now one year older; the oldest having left behind single digits forever.  We didn't have any parties this year, which I am glad of, because I don't think I would have had the energy to make it fun or have fun myself.  Months ago we gave the kids a choice of a party and no gift; a family outing somewhere; or gifts and no party.  My Favourite Boy opted for the gifts, and chose the video game Skylanders.  He's been having a blast with it and we have gone through three sets of batteries for that darn wireless portal already!

My Favourite Girl opted for an outing to Canada's Wonderland, which we took early in June.  Her birthday was yesterday, but we thought it would be much more enjoyable to take the kids out of school near the end of the year and go when the crowds were smaller and the heat index lower.
Yesterday while I made her cake she organized a little crafting party for some neighbourhood friends and made everybody loot bags with some things she found in the craft cupboard.  She had three crafts to make and then they each had a cupcake from the freezer with buttercream and sprinkles.  So in the end she did get a party too, but I didn't do any of the work and I didn't spend a dime on it!

These are the cakes I made this year for them:

Skylanders cake for My Favourite Boy.  Really I could have tried a little harder but he was super happy with it and that's all that matters:)  If you don't know the game at all the top part of the cake is supposed to be the portal that the figures are placed on.

A kitty cake for My Favourite Girl:

I forgot to take a picture before I put the curly candles on.  Have I said before how much I love sheet cakes?

These are the cards I stitched for them:

My Favourite Girl picked out her design: she's on a little critter kick lately.

I have been experimenting in the kitchen with things other than cakes too.  I made some melon custard puddings with cantaloupe melon:

...And peach crumble pie, which I haven't even tried yet!

Both of these recipes came from a previous issue of Everyday Food magazine.

I also got some stash!  I put an order in with 1-2-3 Stitch and got these in the mail the other day:

The halloween magazine is great and I can't wait to get started on some of the pieces.  Never mind  my other works in progress:)  Tonight I just want to put my feet up and stitch something that does not have a deadline to it.  No more birthday cards for at least a month!

Here is a sneak peak at my next project:

I'll keep you posted:)

Sunday, July 29, 2012

July 29, 2012

Things definitely seem to be getting back to normal around here.  The other day I woke up and actually felt efficient.  I made brown sugar and super-whole grain granola.  The granola has been on my list for some time now, but it is one of those projects that when you think about making it there are just too many steps.  Once you do get your butt in gear and make it, you think, "Why didn't I do this before?  What was I complaining about?"

Same goes for the brown sugar.  I'll never pay for it in the store again.  All you do is mix one tablespoon of molasses into each cup of white sugar.  If you want darker, mix in more molasses.
The granola is super whole grain because I used spelt flakes and kamut flakes along with my oats.  It's really yummy and I'm trying to convince the kids it's so much better than Cheerios.

We have been taking advantage of the summer clearance sales and got ourselves a new "outdoor living set": a.k.a outdoor sofa and chairs.   

Best idea of the summer I think, although very b-r-o-w-n.  To match the brown deck and brown-y bricks.  I headed off to Fabricland and picked up some outdoor fabric on clearance.  For $10 I gave it a punch of colour:

... and I have enough fabric left over to make a runner for the coffee table or some place mats for the patio table (which has now moved to our "lower" deck).

Yesterday we took a lovely detour on our way to Mountain Equipment Co-op in Barrie through the lovely historic main street of Schomberg. I didn't take any snaps but it was full of of the old, brick farmhouses; tea rooms, pubs and gift shops.  Whenever we drive through communities like these I am reminded that I live in one of the most beautiful areas of Canada and feel so blessed to do so.

Today we explored something else new, and that was the Monastery at Mary Lake.  This is a beautiful piece of property that was originally owned by Sir Henry Pellatt, who was the person that built the famed Casa Loma mansion in Toronto.  If there were pictures in the dictionary under "idyllic", this would certainly be the one.  This property in King County was his summer home, and in the 1930's he sold it to the Augustinian order to build a farm school.  We did not get to see the shrine today because of an event going on, but we did walk through the forest and part of the grounds.  We actually tired Libby out!  The fieldstone house was just a bit too far off the path for me to get pictures of.  As this is private property that the owners graciously allow visitors to walk the trails, I did not want to be too forward and go tramping up to the old house!  This is the most impressive barn though:

I am hoping the weekend's energy shifts into the coming week as well.  My Favourite Girl has a birthday on Thursday and I still need to stitch a card for her and think of a cake to make.  After that I should be able to get back to some of my W.I.P's  languishing away!

Have a wonderful day:)

Thursday, July 26, 2012

July 26, 2012

Pseudo-normalcy: at last!  I think I almost got my groove back:)  Summer has not gone as completely as I had planned, but I am finally enjoying it.  We have had such hot weather.  Really, really hot weather.  It has made it hard to be outside and take Libby on longer walks.  We have been puttering around the house and just taking it easy for the most part.  The kids had a full day, week long summer camp last week and that made it easier to get things back to normal.

We are still getting to know Libby and loving all the little things we discover about her.  Libby likes to eat canned pumpkin and cottage cheese.  She loves her home made stew and sneaking up onto our beds when we're not looking.  She is a very, very good dog and we are very, very grateful!

I was excited to do some sewing for her.  I gave her bed a make-over from boring denim to pink bouquets:

I have plans to cross stitch a name plate to cover the "doggy" sign on the front.  All in good time:)

I also got rid of the yucky leash she came with and made a prettier one:

I saved the hardware from the old leash and used the same heavy cotton from the bed for the strap.  Mr Crafty World was concerned the fabric leash would snap so I encased a thinner strip of polyester webbing from a dollar store leash inside.  Now it's strong, washable, prettier, and more comfortable to hold than the webbed leash she came with.  I also added a D-ring to the handle loop so I could attach the cute little pouch that holds clean-up bags.

 I used the tutorial from Loft Creations website.  You can find it and other goodies under the tutorials tab.  I have plans to make her a few toys as she rips through hers with startling speed!

A couple of weeks ago I doggy-sat a friends dog, which was kind of an adventure when you're just getting used to having a dog yourself!  Every mealtime I encountered this behind my feet:

Yesterday the kids and I went off to Ikea so I could spend some of my doggy-sitting money.  I haven't been in a very long time and was excited to find some pretty new things for my kitchen.  

I love the bowls - they're made in France.  I washed them up right away and used them for last night's dessert: Raspberry Fool:

Lastly, I'll leave you with a few photos of flowers from my garden.  A little jug of summer if you will:

Enjoy your day!

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