Saturday, May 1, 2010

Up On the Housetop

Yippee! I'm one third done with Christmas at Hawk Run Hollow! Block 4 seemed to take f-o-r-e-v-e-r. I felt like I was actually building this mansion brick by brick...all of those browns and tans are my least favorite colors to stitch with. But, I think the end result was worth all the hours I spent on it. (Is it just me, though, or does each of those peacock tails bear a striking resemblance to a traffic light?) Block 5, which I'll be stitching this month, is much less "stitch intensive," so it should go fairly quickly. I might actually finish it before the last day of the month for a change...

Below is the entire piece so far. For any new readers--I'm stitching it on 32 ct. flax Belfast linen using DMC threads.


I can hardly believe that it's May already...one of my favorite months. When I was a child, we celebrated the first day of May (May Day) in a very special way. We would decorate paper cones, fill them with flowers, and leave the flowers at a neighbor's doorstep. After ringing the doorbell, we would run and hide and then peek out as the neighbor retrieved her surprise. It was such fun! I especially recall doing this for a pair of elderly women who lived two doors down from us. They were always so kind to the neighborhood children, inviting us in after school for cookies and milk. I still remember sitting in their warm and cozy kitchen, munching on the best sugar cookies, and telling them about my day at school. Do any of you remember this May Day tradition? I wonder if it is still practiced anywhere...Times have changed and I don't think most neighbors are as close as they were back then. Or, even more likely, parents are afraid to let their children roam around the neighborhoods by themselves...


Can you ever remember a prettier spring than we've had this year? At this point many of the flowers and flowering trees have begun to fade, but I did manage to take a few photos of them at their peak. I wish you could smell the white vibernum--they just scent my entire kitchen with the most delightful fragrance.









I can hardly wait to begin Blackbird Design's "Something Sweet" this week. Don't you just love the start of a new project? Everything is so fresh and untouched--the fabric just waiting there for you to add some color... I'm stitching it for a very special person--hope she likes it... I love the colors in this piece and that giant violet next to the yellow house. It seems like the perfect piece to stitch during May. Thanks again, dear Kim for passing on this chart to me!

Well, that's about it for this week. I hope you all have relaxing, stitch-filled weekends. Thank you so very much for all of your wonderful comments each week. It just brightens my day each time I read a new one!

49 comments:

Stephanie (Joie de Bayou) said...

Beautiful stitching! Love the snowflakes.

valerie said...

Great progress on your CoHRH!! Can't wait to see your Something Sweet start. That's one of my favorite BBD designs. Happy weekend!

Rowyn said...

Hi Carol

CAHRH is looking beautiful. It is nice to see it being stitched with DMC and to see it looks just as vibrant and lovely as if it were stitched with silks.

Nice to see photos of all your spring flowers. I think that is so sweet playing knock and run, and leaving flowers for the elderly ladies :-)

I haven't seen the design Something Sweet before, but I am sure the recipient will love it.

MrsB said...

Great progress on your CAHRH...

Love the flowers, and your old tradition! We don't do anything like that here - we just have the May Day Bank Holiday on Monday, so most people are off work for the day.

KarenV said...

CaHRH is looking fantastic! I think that block is one of my favourites, with all the snowflakes. It's coming along so well, great progress.

Martine said...

Thank you for these beautiful flowers !!!
Here, in France, the first May is a holiday. People do not work and stores are closed. We offer of the lily of the valley to bring the happiness to all those who are dear to us.
I love the design Something sweet too... and I am sure that it will be a beautiful surprise for "your very special person" !!!!
I wish you a wonderful week-end, Carol and congrats for your Hawk Run Hollow Block 4 !
Hugs !

Cath said...

Lovely finish of block 4 , LOL at the traffic lights. X

Terri(TerriBoog) said...

Great progress on your CAHRH ~ it is really coming along nicely! The house block would have about killed me, I think!

Your flowers are so pretty. We ar still blooming and showing here in Michigan and it's just so pretty! It has been a wonderful spring.

I love your May Day tradition - we never did that but I sure would have loved to. I don't think I'd be able to get my boys to do that now though!

Looking forward to seeing your BBD start - the house and violets are really cute!

Nancy said...

I would say all your efforts are definitely worth it Carol because this is absolutely beautiful! Your stitching is so fun to see. Now that you mention it the peacocks tails do look a little like traffic lights, but the reindeer looks so regal with his crown.

I enjoy starting a new project too! I think it's one of the most fun parts of the hobby of needlework. Enjoy Something Sweet!

Your childhood May Days sound wonderful! In France they celebrate with sprigs of Lily of the Valley.

Have a fantastic weekend, and I'll email very soon!

Kathy A. said...

Congratulations of finishing block 3 of CAHRH - it is stunning done.
Love that new project. Enjoy!

Charlene ♥ SC said...

Congrats on your progress, and enjoy your new start. Our May Day was celebrated by being able to go barefoot... they don't allow that much anymore, either...

Lois said...

Congratulations on finishing the next block and what a stitching intensive block it was. It was well worth it though, it looks great! You are doing so well in keeping with your resolution to stitch one each month. What a lovely project you're starting next. Looking forward to watching your progress on this one.

I've never heard of the May Day tradition you shared but what a lovely thing to do.

Hope you're having a good weekend!

Karen said...

Your Hawk's is looking great! Love our new project too...so sweet. Can't wait to see it stitched.

Tricia said...

Wow you are doing great on Hawk Run. You must be overloaded with patience!!! And I adore that Simply Sweet Chart. I don't remember seeing it before. It looks like a fun stitch. Enjoy!

Barbara said...

Carol, wouldn't it be great to still be able to do those traditions without any fear. Oh to be able to go back to those simpler times. Love your HRH...it's looking great!!!!

Margaret said...

Congratulations on finishing block three! Yes, those houses can take forever, can't they? I think that's part of what stops me from starting this beautiful project! lol! Having done 4 HRH's, I think I'm sort of HRH'ed out. lol! That is such a cool May Day tradition you did as a kid. Yes, it's sad that nowadays we are afraid to let our kids do any such thing. I love that BBD project that you're going to start -- so pretty!

Katrina said...

Love CaHRH and your new start! Gorgeous. Flowers are just beautiful too.

Elaine said...

Carol your CaHRH is looking fab. Traffic light peacocks - too funny!

Gorgeous flower pictures, your garden must be just beautiful.

Something sweet looks so pretty, can;t wait to see it all stitched up.

Barbi said...

Carol, HRH is just gorgeous! I love looking at your stitching. And you new project looks like it's going to be fun to stitch! I'm with you, I love starting new projects.
Our spring is still slow to start here. We had a snow storm on Wednesday, but luckily with snow this time of year it melts the very next day.

Melanie said...

You are right - they do kind of look like street lights. It's a beautiful block, I just love the colors in it.

I wish there was some sort of May tradition like that around here. No wait, we do have a tradition - it's called 'start using the leaf blowers early and wake people up on a Saturday morning'. I think I'd rather have flowers on my stoop. lol

Have a great week! :)

Catherine said...

Carol,

CaHRH looks great! I'll never be able to look at those tails again without thinking "stoplight"!

I love the tradition you had of leaving flowers. What fun you must have had watching people open their doors!

Hope you have a wonderful weekend - we have to head back to the ball fields at 1:30!

Daffycat said...

Way to go, Carol! This is progressing nicly! I really love this block. That reindeer is so wonderful.

This has been an awesome Spring. Especially after the crap Winter we suffered!

Lisa Clarke said...

Beautiful job! Your post witht the PS Santa and Sunflowers made me go dig out my chart and start on this one! I'm doing it on 16 ct and it's quite small. Thanks for the inspiration! When I was teaching preschool, we did the May Day thing with the other classrooms - quite a challenge to herd a classroom of 4's down the hall to "quietly" put a bouquet on another teacher's door! Take care!

Deb said...

I can see why you thought you were building that house brick by brick - they're a lot of stitching in that house and the whole block! It does look great!

Your flower pictures look wonderful. We're getting there here in Michigan - the weather has been above average so everything is blooming earlier than usual. Still waiting for my lilacs to come up.

Carolyn NC said...

Congrats, Carol - CAHR looks wonderful! New starts are always such fun - enjoy!

Lee said...

Love the interesting sky patterns on your HRH block with the suggestion it could be winter time.
Your stitching as ever so neat.
No May day traditions for me, but I do leave little posies of flowers (Tussie mussies) for people to find. Last Sunday put one on the organists seat at Church.
Lovely colours in your new project

Myra said...

Christmas at HRH is looking fabulous Carol. You are making steady progress on it. I like the HRH pieces because I think I would feel a small sense of accomplishment with each block finished.

Your garden pictures are lovely. The peonies at work are blooming and they smell divine!

Love the BBD piece - the colors are just fabulous and I can't wait to see those flosses on the linen. The sentiment is so sweet too.

Melissa said...

Your CaHRH is looking lovely, Carol! It may be my favourite of the series!

I love spring because of the flowers I think. It's magical! I'm glad you are enjoying a nice Spring there.

Looking forward to seeing your new start!

Jackie said...

Your blocks are wonderful! I love the snowflakes too.

You've selected a perfect May project! It's going to be lovely.

Jules said...

Very beautiful progress and yes the peacock's tails do resemble a traffic light. Maybe switch the bottom one out for a green? Hmmm!? LOL

We used to make paper cones and fill them with flowers too, although we didn't just leave them and run. They were generally for a parent/grandparent. I love May Day!

Cindy's Stitching said...

Your piece is coming along wonderful Carol. Think how pretty it will be when it is done.

Kellie said...

You go, girl!! Block 4 looks great! Sadly, I have not met my monthly goal for this design again in April, which means I will be doubling up for May, sort of. I have finished the deer and the rooftop and a few snowflakes, but that is all. Something Sweet is just that... very sweet. :) I know what you mean about the start of a new project... I make way too many of them (starts, that is).

Hope you have a good week with lots of stitching time. :)

Ranae said...

Block 4 looks fabulous. Love that BBD. I am sure that person will adore it
Happy May!!!

Edit said...

Carol, your Christmas at Hawk Run Hollow is so beautiful, I can hardly wait to see it together, but yes, I know, it will take some more time :)

And your new start, oooh, it will be beautiful!

Here the first Sunday of May is Mothers day, we used to celebrate it in kindergarden, primary school... The beginning of May reminds me to these celebrations :)

Have a very nice week!
Edit

Always smiling said...

I just love your Hawk Run Hollow and your new start, it is so pretty. I am off to look for it as it would be a lovely present for some one. Your memories of May Day were lovely to read, if only we could go back to those carefree days for our grand children.

Chris x

Julie said...

C@HRH is looking stunning, it looks a great project to be working on.

I love the smell of fresh flowers, it is my one weakness to have at least one vase full in the house at all times.

The new start looks nice, i'll enjoy watching this one grow too

A lovely story about your childhood May Days, i've not heard of that tradition, not one we do here in the UK. We have the morris men dancing around the may pole!

BrendaS said...

Carol--
I love your CaHRH. Everytime I see it I want to go pull out mine and get stitching on it.

Your new start looks nice and spring-like. I can hardly wait to see progress pictures.

Thanks for sharing such lovely photos of the flowers in your area. Spring is a wonderful time of the year!

Have a great week.

Shirley said...

This is a beautiful piece of work. Very unusual. I love it. kind regards, Shirley

Jennifer said...

Hello Carol! I love your Christmas at HRH it is beautiful. One of my bday leaflets is Shores of HRH! I had to break down and get it especially since they are going to retire soon. Love your new BBD too. There are so many beautiful leaflets aren't there? . Love what you got in the give away too. Even the card is so sweet. Enjoy the spring!

Meari said...

HRH looks great, Carol. I remember making May Day baskets in school. We just took ours home to the parents. Pretty spring photos :)

Mylene said...

The new block finish looks great. And what beautiful spring flowers.

Siobhan said...

Good for you, Carol, staying on track with CaHRH! It looks great. You're going to love that BBD. I have it done up into a pillow and just love the sentiment on it.

I don't recall that May Day tradition. The only May Day tradition I have is a religious one. It sounds nice, though, to do that for neighbors!

Pumpkin said...

Horray!!!! Look at you go ;o) Your CHRH is looking fantastic!

A new project to start? Looks interesting and can't wait to see this one develop :o)

The flowers have been so beautiful this year and there's still much more to come!

When I was a little girl, I would pick wildflowers and take them over to a neighbor of ours. She always loved getting them :o)

mainely stitching said...

Oh what beautiful progress you're making! :D

Dani - tkdchick said...

Woo Hoo! That looks fantastic!!! Yup those tails do look like traffic lights!

Vinniey said...

Your CHRH is looking great! I love the first block, it's so colorful and the third block is pretty too. :) Congrats on finishing the forth block. Looking forward to see your fifth block. "Something Sweet" is so pretty, it will be beautiful. Thanks for sharing your childhood May days. :) Have a nice weekend, Carol.

Viooltje (Violet) said...

I ♥ the snow flakes/crystals and the crowned deer at your CaHRH.
Pffft, thát house isn't/couldn't be thát much work LOL have you seen my house blocks lately?
(I'm allowed to say thát ;oP)
*Ü*
Do you believe it if I tell you that just some hours ago I had BbD's Violets in my hands?
(I'm trying to bring some order in my stash, and am temted to start -umpfteen new works, but I'm still strong...)
;o)

AND we have the (same?) Viburnum (we call them snowballs here) in our garden too and yess I cann confirm they SMELL (with capitals) ENORMOUS OVERWHELMING, but are also only blooming for about a week... AND ATRACK FLIES instead of bees. LOL *Ü*

Brigitte said...

Something Sweet is such a wonderful design, I really love it but haven't started it yet. I love how you describe the start of a new project - it's exactly like this, putting colour onto a pristine piece of fabric. And this makes you feel so good, doesn't it.

Raven/Missy said...

Your CaHRH looks wonderful! The more I see this piece (and there a lot of people stitching it) the more it grows on me LOL