"A very Merry Unbirthday to you, to you. A very Merry Unbirthday to you." from Walt Disney's Alice in Wonderland"

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Quilting, Cats, St. Francis and Odd.

Yesterday and today I listened to Brother Odd by Dean Koontz. I loved it, even though I do not go in for horror stories. I did a search for Catholic mystery writers and on Catholic Answers Forum one of the participants suggested Koontz. I will definitely get the other Odd books, and sample some of his others as well.

I am working on learning to quilt. I have mentioned the Mrs. Moen Mystery SAL I am doing, and today I joined the Postage Stamp Quilt Along by Handmade by Heidi. What a coincidence that I too received my LLBean Home Catalog this week, saw the postage stamp quilt they have, and wished I could get it. Now I will be making one, if I can follow along to the end. Heidi states it is an easy quilt to make, perfect for beginners, and a good way to use up a fabric stash.

Puffy had me concerned today. She disappeared this afternoon, and when I found her she was laying under a cabinet. I knew something was wrong, but not what it was so I just watched her. She stayed like that for several hours, then got up finally. She seems okay now, but it's finger crossing time. I prefer her like this:
Puff is 13 years old. A year and a half ago she almost died due to a food allergy I didn't know she had. Neither one of us wants to go through that again. I adopted her on the feast of St. Francis of Assisi, so today I prayed to him for her, and he came through. Thank you, St. Francis.

God Bless.

P.S. You need to see today's comic on Knocking on Heaven's Door. It is precious.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Les Chroniques de Frimousse is a favorite blog of mine. Her patterns for counted cross-stitch are very sweet, especially her "lutins", or elves, maybe imps. They are so cute, and she puts them in all kinds of scenes. This is her pattern that I used to make a casual scissors fob. It isn't stuffed, but I used one layer of batting. I might make another to use as a key chain. I didn't use Aida cloth, but monks cloth which I guess makes it really, really casual.

Friday, January 22, 2010

Yesterday I listened to Round Robin by Jennifer Chiaverini. I love the characters in her books. I was wishing I was at quilt camp even though I was happy cross-stitching. It must have been the hand-sewing I was enjoying. I worked on the Mary Poppins pattern during most of the book, and today I worked on it again while listening to Joanne Fluke's Plum Pudding Murder. I have made mis-counts if that's what they are called. I consider they make my work personal, not necessarily wrong because I am choosing to leave them in the work. I corrected an error in one corner, but I am not being a perfectionist about this work. I'll see what it looks like when I'm done and decide what I think of it. I think it will be fine for my first big project in counted cross-stitch. God Bless You.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010


Sue at Alderwood Quilts is having a giveaway because she reached 100 followers. Drop by her site to enter to win beautiful batik fat quarters and a pattern. If you are interested in other giveaways, visit Quilt Hollow. She has listed some on the right sidebar.

Moxie had a goal and tonight she achieved it:

Posted by Picasa

Yes, that is my bed and canopy she is patroling. We have been in battle about that territory for a quite a while, and she has won.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

We dodged the bullet.

On an unrelated topic, but still a happy one:
One of my favorite blogs to follow is Wee Folk Art. The creations you will see there are magical. Today's post is about a Valentine's Day project and giveaway, everything needed to make napkins and napkin rings. I have added their link to my blog list, so even if you are not interested in the giveaway, you should visit the site to see the whimsy and talent. I hope I win!

Listening to Charles Todd while puttering. God Bless!

Monday, January 18, 2010

Rhonda at Patches and Pieces is having a giveaway to honor her sister's birthday which is on January 29th. If you are interested in entering to win a Moda Soiree Honey Bun than visit Patches and Pieces and see what you need to do. How nice is it that it's her sister's birthday and one of us gets a gift.

I posted a rant yesterday about all of the calls I was receiving from the Democratic candidate for senator. Today I only received one call. Do you think they read my blog?

Over the weekend I listened to Mary Higgins Clark and Carol Higgins Clark and today I started a Charles Todd book. My bedtime story this week is a Ralph McInerny collection. I'm listening to quite a few books but I am not getting any crocheting or needlework done so something is wrong. I'm slacking off.

Sunday, January 17, 2010

I have voted in every election since I registered to vote, almost forty years ago. I do not need anyone to remind me to vote, or tell me who I should vote for. But if I get one more call from anyone in the Coakley group coercing me for my vote, I will know that the Democratic Party has hit bottom and are desperately afraid. Enough of that. But since I support life, they won't be getting my vote.

Today I listened to an Agatha Raisin mystery by M.C.Beaton whose books I love, worked a little on the Poppins cross-stitch, and baked two Amish Friendship breads and two plain white breads, all looking pretty good to me.

God Bless You!

Friday, January 15, 2010

My brother begins his much-deserved retirement today. I hope his years ahead are plentiful, trouble-free, healthy and fun. In fact, I wish that for all of us.

Last night I attended a Do-It-Herself course in plumbing at Home Depot. Apparently, 26 people had signed up for the class, but I was the only one who showed up. If you have never taken one of these courses, try it. This is the second one I have taken, the gardening class last spring being the first. The plumbing session covered replacing shower heads, faucets and toilets. Will I ever replace any of those myself? Probably not, but other information came up that was good to know, and I could ask all the questions I had. And I won the door prize, the book Home Improvement 1-2-3, since I had no competition. And anyone who attended received a Coca Cola reward points card with 20 points. I noticed they were running one for kids on making what I think was a flower press. I'd sign up for it but I don't think the apron would fit me. HA!
Again no crafting. But I did pick out the fabric I will use for the Mrs. Moen Mystery project.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

This is the Lion Brand Squiggles and Grins Baby Hat that I made. I did two things differently from the pattern. I bordered it with three rows of single crochet instead of one, and I used a yarn needle and yarn to gather the top before tying on the cord. I just couldn't keep the hat together at the top without doing that step.

I will make a pair of booties, and then the blanket, hat, and booties will go to my parish's Birth Right collection box.

No books today. I told my cats we were having a vacation day, and then something came up and I've been busy all day with household chores. So, no crafting either (pout.)
Good Night and God Bless You.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

I have a correction to make from yesterday. The pattern I followed from the Lion Brand site is the Squiggles and Grins Baby Hat. I finished one and will start another because it is so cute. Picture to be posted tomorrow.

Knitty Bitties (http://www.knittybitties.blogspot.com) is having a giveaway of her 'Oh Snap Mini Wallet' to one lucky person who leaves a comment telling her what you are crafting this week. How easy is that.

Maybe you know about this comic, but I have just found "Knocking on Heavens Door.' I don't know where I've been, but I never saw it before today, and now I love it. Check it out. The link is in my list.

I did listen to a book today, but I am not sure if I'll continue to the end, so I won't mention it yet. And I have become a fan of Veronica Black for her gentle, little mysteries.

Good Night and God Bless You!

P.S. You may see a resemblance in the stance of the cats in the pictures to the left. They are both looking at the cozy spot right next to me on the couch. It's saved for them, of course.

Monday, January 11, 2010

I love Mondays. Even when I worked, I loved the energy and newness of a Monday, even though I did not like the sinking feeling one gets on Sunday afternoon. So, today being Monday, I had lots of interest in getting things accomplished. One of those things was to complete a mission that was begun in November.

I belong to the Holy Rosary Sodality of my parish, and back in the autumn several of the us wanted to do something for members who are no longer able to attend meetings due to age and infirmary. We made sixteen or so of these blankets:

and we teamed up in two cars to deliver them. Visiting these people and giving them the blankets made them happy, and that made our Christmas. There was one person, however, we did not get to that night because of her location. With a blizzard, more snow, and personal commitments, I didn't get to complete this mission until today.
It took me about 45 minutes to arrive at the rest home. It is located in what must be one of the most beautiful spots in New England, and I hope the developers leave it alone! Anyway, the person I visited told me that she turned 100 years old this past Saturday. We both cried a little, especially when she told me what she remembered about my mom, who passed away last year at the age of 96. Apparently, my mom gave her some encouragement when this person needed it and she never forgot. Again, I left feeling lifted and special. I hope she felt the same way.

When I got home, I did this:

I made pierogi filled with onions and mushrooms, with a little cheese. Now, I am a woman who has made pierogi filled with peanut butter and jelly, so I thought these tasted pretty good. Of course, these are the "Shar Pei" version of pierogi, as you can tell by the wrinkles. I suspect that more filling would have taken care of that.

Growing up, our family had a small tradition that I confess, at times made me feel a little funny, but we always did it. Before we went to bed or left the house, we always blessed each other. "Good Night, God Bless You" and Good Bye, God Bless You" were always said. I suspect this came from our mother, but our dad picked it up. I have been bringing it back into my life when I can, and beginning today, I am bringing it to my blog.

I started a new baby hat, a Lion Brand pattern, Squiggles and Stripes. It's very cute so far, but I am only doing the squiggles, no stripes. You'll see it when it is done.

Good Bye and God Bless You.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Between Saturday and today I listened to Louise Penny's 'the Crueliest Month.' Fortunately, this was a 10 disc audio book because at 1:00 a.m when I was still awake I decided to listen to more of it and work on a baby hat.

This morning I took apart the hat. In the light of day I could see that the sizing wasn't right. I'll find another pattern to go with the blanket, which is done except for the blocking.

Friday, January 8, 2010

If you go to this website http://marypoppins-hu.blogspot.com/, you will see the Mary Poppins cross-stitch done beautifully by its designer. Also some pictures of what other stitch alongers have done. Its such a neat design. The wind and the umbrellas blowing across the scene just make it for me. The author is Hungarian, but she made the design in English as well.
I have gotton part of the border in and one little corner umbrella. I must be the slowest counted cross stitcher on the planet, but I think I want to frame this one after its done so it needs to look good.

No audio books today, but my bedtime story for the past few days has been a Veronica Black mystery that I am enjoying. I found her by doing a search for Catholic mystery writers. There don't seem to be many, but there are quite a few formerly-Catholic mystery writers. Too bad. I also enjoy certain regional mysteries, and when I did a search for Canadian writers, I found Louise Penny. Her Armand Gamache series is one of my favorites. My sister told me about Charles Todd (an American mother-son writing team), and I highly recommend their Ian Rutledge series. My sister worked in a library for many years, and she is a good source for me for well-written books. I don't enjoy gory awfulness, but what I think makes a good mystery are the characters, location, the 'life going on activities' while the case is being investigated, and even the food. For instance, I didn't know until I was reading Louise Penny that the Tim Horton coffee shops are Canadian in origin. The detectives are always picking up their coffees at a Tim Hortons on their way to the murder. It's that kind of detail that brings me into the book.
I've been meaning to do a search for mysteries set in Poland or by Polish writers. And if I find any, hopefully I'll be able to get the books.

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Busy Day

Listened to G.K. Chesterton and worked on the Mary Poppins counted cross-stitch project. My cats, as you can see, let me.

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Today I put Christmas away. I listened to an Anne Perry book which was a Christmas story about self-forgiveness, friendship and gratitude. I am grateful that I was not a citizen in England during the 1800's because I probably would have been a downstairs maid or scullery slave or something like that. And if I had been in society I would probably have a nervous breakdown trying to follow the mores of the era and not disgrace myself. No thank you, the twenty-first century is hard enough for me.

Unfortunately, I didn't get to work on any crafts. But there is always tomorrow. God Bless!

Monday, January 4, 2010

While I listened to a book by Nicholas Blake, I made progress on the Mary Poppins SAL (stitch along.) I like the challenge of this design, but it's not going very fast. Anyway, it's beginning to look like something. I am working on the first third of the design. The source of the design, and the beautiful work of the designer is here http://marypoppins-hu.blogspot.com. I like working on this beautiful design because I wanted to do something more challenging in counted cross-stitch, but to make it easier I'm doing it in one color.

And I took some time to bake a banana bread

In addition to Miss Poppins and crocheting the baby things, I plan on following the crewel work that Mary Corbet is doing on her blog, Needle n Thread.com. I need to do some setting up, so I'll probably make a JoAnn's run tomorrow.

And to make my day even sweeter, I received a thank you note in the mail today from two of my grandnieces. You're welcome Katrina and Brenna.

Sunday, January 3, 2010

It's Sunday night and it's been snowing on and off since last night. So, after shoveling snow this morning, I spent my day listening to a Colin Dexter book on tape while working on a SAL from the Mary Poppins blog. The SAL is, surprise, Mary Poppins. I am late joining this SAL, but the photo shows my progress so far. She's standing on a roof, so that's a chimney near her, not a fire hydrant, although it could be mistaken for one I guess. The border of the pattern has little umbrellas in each corner which make it so charming. I'm using 2 strands of DMC rayon floss 30336,a navy blue.

When I had enough of cross-stitching, I picked up my crochet project, a small baby blanket to donate. It's very simple, just a row of single crochet then a row of double crochet in a shell; repeat the sequence till done. I'm using Bernat Softee Baby in pale blue and a G hook. I have a few skeins of this yarn so I'll probably make a few premie caps and some booties, maybe another blanket or two.

This is my first blog entry ever, and I know I will get better at it. Thanks for stopping by.