Sunday, August 29, 2010

Up On the Housetop



Can you believe we are down to the final two days of August? Where has our summer gone? I feel like I was hardly outside due to the heat and humidity this year... And to prove it wasn't only in my head, the Pittsburgh area tied with several other cities as 10th highest in the nation for number of days (61) with temperatures above normal since June. Is your city shown on the slideshow? My sons kept telling me it's always this bad and I kept saying, "No, I never remember a summer this hot and humid!" It's nice to know that old mom is right every now and then!! So, you can see why I've been stitching Christmas ornaments in an attempt to cool down...


My first ornament is what I should have stitched during July for my ornament-a-month goal. I'm sure you all recognize it as a Prairie Schooler, don't you? It's from "Up On the Housetop" Book No. 25 and is stitched on some 32 ct. dark grey mystery linen that I bought on Ebay. I changed the color of the house to this pretty yellow (DMC 676), but the other colors were as charted. I've always had a thing for little yellow houses--they look so cozy and inviting. Do I have a yellow house? No...but maybe some day! I didn't plan this, but look how well the house color matches the trim color. Guess it was just meant to be...



For my August ornament this Prairie Schooler addict chose, what else--another PS design! This one is stitched over one on 28ct. Country French Cafe Mocha linen with the suggested DMC colors. It is just about 3 inches square--the perfect size for an ornament. This design can be found in one of the new PS charts: "And To All A Goodnight" Book No. 167.



Since this is quite a "busy" design, I kept the finishing pretty simple--just backed it with the fabric shown and added the plaid bow and red buttons for the hanger. It didn't even strike me that I was stitching the same basic theme as the previous ornament (Santa with his sled and reindeer) until I was just about done with the second!


The mailman delivered this beautiful Hillside Samplings chart this week as a gift from Melissa at Words and Blooms. Melissa had a special giveaway for some of her already-stitched charts for her regular vistors/commenters (see it pays to comment!!) and I was lucky enough to win this beauty. Thank you so much, Melissa--I am truly looking forward to stitching it and will definitely "pay forward" your kindness when I am done...


Most of you know that I love to bake, but without my sons around (except for Sunday dinners), I bake very little anymore. My middle son kind of teased me about it a while back saying, "Remember when you used to bake cookies, Mom?" Well, if I did bake them as much as I used to I would gain 100 pounds. My three guys were little cookie monsters when they were younger--there was no keeping up with them. So, as a special treat for their Sunday dinner today, I tried a new recipe: Oatmeal Raisin Bars from Everyday Food magazine. I love that magazine because it uses ingredients that you actually have readily available in your kitchens rather than having to hunt down exotic ingredients that you might use once in your lifetime! These were just great--moist and flavorful and you could really substitute any dried fruit for the raisins. Yum!!

I really enjoyed reading all of your comments on my last post about how many "unfinished finishes" you have hiding away at your houses. It was nice to know that I'm not alone! Some of you even had more than my 82 which made me feel much better. At least I've been good about finishing my monthly ornaments this year. And to show you how well I've kept up with their finishing...here they are from January through August:

Thought I would leave you with a collage of the winged beauties that have visited my garden this month. I'm just fascinated by dragonfly wings--that iridescent quality is so lovely...


And once again, thank you so much for each and every comment and email--they mean so much to me and I truly appreciate the time you take in writing me. May your week bring you only good things and I hope my American friends have a relaxing and stitch-filled Labor Day weekend. Bye now...

61 comments:

chris_stitch said...

Carol, your ornaments are beautiful. I am inspired to start some finishing.

Chris

Jackie said...

Your collection of ornaments is beautiful! I've stitched ONE this year and it's not finished! Ugh!

valerie said...

It's great that you are keeping up with your ornaments. I haven't even stitched one this year and 12 was my goal! I really love the first ornament and I too have a thing for yellow houses or periwinkle blue ones too.

Your oatmeal raisin bars look great! Yum!

Katrina said...

Your ornaments are just gorgeous!!! Love how you finished them too.

Karen said...

Great job on your ornaments. I love the finishing on all of them....it is perfect.

Angela P said...

Seeing all your ornament finishes so far all together has inspired me to attempt this for next year's stitching :) And I always love coming over to your blog to see what you've stitched up next by Prairie Schooler! I love both ornaments that you made for this month :) I don't even want to guess how many unfinished finishes I have but there's a few (at least).

Margaret said...

I just love all your ornaments! That is so wonderful that you're keeping up with this!

Shannon said...

Your ornaments are so pretty! :)

Myra said...

I don't know what happened to summer either Carol - like you I stayed inside for most of it because it was so hot! I love all of your ornaments, your finishing just makes them wonderful. Those cookies look yummy - wish we could sit and have one and a cup of coffee or tea together. :o) Have a wonderful week.

KarenV said...

Carol, I love all your ornaments for this year, including the two latest ones! Congratulations for keeping up with one a month!

Mary said...

Carol, your stitching and finishing for your ornaments are beautiful. Your tree will be exquisite this year! You can be so proud of your stitching accomplishments!
I like Everyday Food, too. I made a batch of cookies the other day and then realized that MY cookie monster is away....next batch...CMU! (*HUGS*)

Deborah said...

Love all of your ornaments. The finishing of them is beautiful.

Lisa V said...

Your ornies are all beautiful.
I really like the new PS design and I think I might have to do that one for a friend this year.
LISA V

Melissa said...

You've done so well with producing your ornaments, Carol! Not only is the stitching lovely but so is the finishing!

I used to bake a lot too and miss it sometimes, though my waistline doesn't!

Glad you like the chart! Happy Happy Stitching!

Theresa said...

Wow!!! You have some handsome ornaments there!!! Your finishes are so beautiful~~

Those cookies look yummy~~~~

Isabelle said...

All your Christmas ornaments are very nive and the finishing is perfect. Have a nice day, Isabelle

P.S. : here, in France, in Brittany, summer was not very hot... unfortunately for all of us...

Isabelle said...

All your Christmas ornaments are very nive and the finishing is perfect. Have a nice day, Isabelle

P.S. : here, in France, in Brittany, summer was not very hot... unfortunately for all of us...

Isabelle said...

All your Christmas ornaments are very nive and the finishing is perfect. Have a nice day, Isabelle

P.S. : here, in France, in Brittany, summer was not very hot... unfortunately for all of us...

CATHI said...

The Christmas ornaments are soo beautiful!!!

Cathi

Lois said...

Carol, what great ornaments and well done for having them all finished. Your tree will be lovely this year. Of course, I love the latest PS ones that you've done. Enjoy stitching the chart from Melissa!

Brigitte said...

Your new ornaments are so gorgeous - says a PS addict to another one, lol. And I so love the picture with them all, they all look completely harmonious and as if they belong together.
We also had a heat wave in June and July but since the beginning of August it's been cold again, more or less. Mostly more, lol.

Hazel said...

Love your ornies. Those oatmeal bars look great. xx

Lesleyanne said...

Your ornaments are gorgeous. I love the finishing on all of them.

Annie said...

That's a beautiful collection of ornaments. You do such nice finishing.

And oatmeal-raisin cookies qualify as health food in my book!

Vonna said...

Indianapolis, IN is on the list and I know it to be true since I live 40 minutes south of Indy....UGH!!!! Is all I can say. There is no green grass in Bloomington, only brown, dry, short straw. Trees are dropping their leaves. It's still hot!

LOVE your ornaments, each one is beautiful and unique! Congrats! Stay COOL!

Shari said...

as usual, everything looks wonderful!! Your stitching is so beautiful!
As for the cities shown, my city is pretty small, but I saw Indianapolis & Chicago & Detroit, which all surround me close, so yes, here too!!!!

riona said...

Now you've done it ... I feel totally guilty about ignoring my goal of stitching one Christmas ornament and one Thanksgiving ornament a month. I was doing well with stitching and finishing until May arrived and with it the brutally hot weather. I just lost my momentum. Inspired by your progress, I have designated September a catch-up month.

Sheila said...

I just love your finishes. I have not ever stitched that designer and those look very nice. Cookie bars look yummy as well, i know what you mean by the pounds.

Kathy A. said...

Oh, I love your yellow house ornament. I live in a yellow house or at least I do for the next three weeks. Then we move to our new home.
What a lovely job you have done on your Christmas ornaments. They will look so lovely on the tree.
It is been incredibly humid here this summer too. I don't ever remember a summer like this

Moreen said...

All your ornaments are lovely - I especially love the yellow house one.
Congratulations on your superb finishing.

Catherine said...

Yes - we're on the list!! We just started what will likely be heatwave number 8!

Your ornaments are lovely. Your finishing fantastic!

Those bars look fantastic! I just sent the boys off for their first day of school - the youngest will be there all day now that he's in first! Maybe I'll have to bake some cookies for when they come home!

Martine said...

What a beautifull collection of ornaments !!! I love it and this two other designs of Prairie Shooler are beautiful !!!!!!

Here, in France, near Paris, the summer was not hot and now, it is already the autumn : we have wind and rain all the days... and Thursday, children will return to the school !!! I can't beleive that the summer is already finished !...

Congrats, Carol and thank you for your blog : it is my sunbeam !!!
Hugs !

Cindy's Stitching said...

The christmas ornaments are so pretty. I also have done a couple of the PS ones myself. Yes it was a hot summer, but better then a cold rainy one. All the ornaments together are so pretty. Your pictures are always so pretty.

BrendaS said...

Carol --
I just love your ornaments. You do such a nice job stitching and finishing them. I especially like the plaid ribbon and buttons on the 2nd one.

I agree with you that this summer has been "awful". Way too hot for me. I think this weekend it's supposed to cool down and be very nice. Just in time for football!

Thanks for sharing and have a great week.

Pumpkin said...

Okay, I think you're putting us all to shame Carol! Look at you...TWO FINISHED ornaments! ;o) They are absolutely lovely and I like what you did with the yellow house. I too like the look of yellow (soft) houses. Your tree will look so beautiful this year.

We're going through ANOTHER week of HOT and HUMID weather :o( If we were a US city, I'm sure we'd be on the list. Ugh!

Berit said...

Oh, how gorgeous those ornies are! I share your opinion on little yellow houses entirely. :D

Also love the "bottom bow" on that first one; may have to "borrow" that idea! Thanks for sharing!

Melanie said...

Love your ornaments! You always have the best looking photos. :)

Joanie said...

I stumbled across your blog via another and I am so taken with your year of ornaments! Beautiful!

Where in Western PA do you live? I am originally from the Pittsburgh area (have relatives in Beaver Valley) and I'm always looking for folks from "back home"! I now live in Upstate NY.

Elaine said...

Oh Carol your stitching and finishing are such a treat. All those ornies are gorgeous!
Those treats look really yummy.

Blu said...

Very cute ornies.
The yellow house is lovely. Such a warm colour. And you've finished off adorably.
Those raisin bars look yummy!

Vinniey said...

Reading your post before my meal and your oatmeal raisin bars making me feel more hungry, Carol. Congratulations on the win, such a beautiful chart from Melissa. Admired all your ornaments finishing, I love them all! Well done, Coral. :)

Meari said...

The commentary about your boys and baking brought back memories of my teenage years when I baked a LOT for my family. My brothers would eat anything (including burnt cookies)! Even after I moved out of the house, I baked for my family at Christmas. One year I didn't and I heard: "Where's the cookies?" LOL

Your stitchy finishes look gorgeous! Well done, my friend.

Edit said...

As another Ps addict, I just love your new finishes Carol! And to see all your ornaments of this year in the same photo... they are really really beautiful. I am also stitching christmas pieces, but most of them are secret ones ;)

Our summer was also very hot, it arrived later than usual but became much hotter. We even made it into the news, when some days the temperature was so high that tourists could not leave their hotels during the day... Well, lets see how the autumn will be. Hopefully long and nice and warm :)

Jennifer said...

Wow - your finishing on those ornaments is just AMAZING!!!!!

The Queen Bee said...

I don't know why my blog list doesn't update in a timely manner.... so it looks like I'm a little late to the party. Such cute little ornaments. I love anything to do with 'Twas the Night Before Christmas. I think I have the one pattern book but not the other so I'm going shopping and maybe stitching soon after. Thanks for inspiring me.

Pam

Joanie said...

Beautiful finishes! I stumbled on your blog through another and I am so glad I did! Where in the Pittsburgh area are you from? I am originally from a small town in Beaver Valley and I have family there! I always like to touch base with folks back home. Now, I live in Upstate NY.

Lynn said...

That heat and humidity is the reason I started stitching my Halloween piece but it still continues even here at the cottage.
I love your ornaments. That soft yellow house is so pretty!

Meadows08 said...

Hi Carol, I love your ornaments! How do you attach the cording like that? It looks great!

Kajsa said...

Love the ornaments, they are both so pretty!

Kajsa said...

Love the ornaments, they are both so pretty!

Pam said...

Your ornaments are beautiful!! Makes me want to start my Christmas stitching.

Danielle said...

Love the ornaments!!! Great job on stitching and finishing.

Nancy said...

Hi Carol! Well August left us and September began before I could pay your blog a visit. What a delightful post to read.

Your ornaments are just gorgeous, but they always are. I also love yellow houses. They make me think of white sheer cutains blowing in the breeze, apple pies on the windowsill, do you get the feeling?

Thanks for posting about the Oatmeal Raisin Bars. My husband's favorite cookie is Oatmeal Raisin so I'll give these a try.

I love the butterflies and dragonfly! Every year we have dragonflies that light on the antennas of the cars! They are beautiful bugs!

Sally said...

Lovely ornament finishes Carol.Love how you've finished them.

Siobhan said...

Great job on the ornaments, Carol! They are fantastic! I hadn't recognized the first one as a PS. I can't believe how quickly the year has flown--I am already thinking of the ornaments that I must have done for Christmas this year! Love the butterfly pics!

Carolyn NC said...

Ornies are just gorgeous!

Mary said...

Hi Carol
I just love all your Christmas ornaments. I am always late starting on my Christmas gifts so I rummaged in the cupboard to find the Wee Santa patterns from Heart in Hand that I bought to make for a friend for last Christmas !!! They are now on my desk as a reminder. I am looking forward to seeing your CHRH for August. This was going to be my big project for this year but I fell in love with Elizabeth and got waylaid.
Mary

♥ Nia said...

wow! Your ornament is so pretty!!! I love the dark fabric, beautiful piece :)
The second ornament is also pretty :)

Oh.. I miss the summer already =/ Today is raining, sad-sad weather..

Tell your sons that you'll cook more if they show up more often ;) heheh

Your ornaments are so pretty! I stitched Fa La La too :) The thrid one is so cute! But my favorite is July! :D Good job with all!!!

Julie said...

Another 2 beauties to add to your collection, i do love to see a santa with his reindeer.

Yummy looking homebakes

Solstitches said...

What a gorgeous collection of ornaments! Each one is so beautifully stitched and finished.
I love them all especially the little yellow house.

Margaret

Kirsten said...

All your ornaments are just gorgeous!
But I especially love the Prairie Schooler one. Perfect finish!
Kirsten