Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Ornaments and Organizing

Well, well, well, here we are at the very end of July! Can you believe it? It has been a very up and down month here in western Pennsylvania. The first half was filled with hot, almost unbearably humid days and lately, it has been cooler and rainier--almost autumn-like weather. Which do you prefer? I honestly don't mind the heat--it's the humidity that does me in and it seems to get worse the older I get.

Before I show you a couple of new finishes, I want to offer my thanks and appreciation for all of your comments and emails on my last post about my parents' 60th wedding anniversary. I was so touched and my dear mother, who read each and every one of your caring comments, was as well. Dementia has touched so many families and it helps to know we are not alone in the struggle. I honestly think it is harder on the family than on the patient. My dad is in no pain and is, physically, very healthy. But, for us, his family members, it causes us great heartbreak and sorrow to watch his mental decline.  Anyway, I thank each one of you for taking the time to read that long post and for offering hugs, support, and your own stories of  family members struggling with dementia...

I've finally caught up on my ornament-a-month finishes for the year and I have two to share with you today. For the month of June, I stitched Homespun Elegance's 2009 Sampler Ornament called "Santa Arrives Tonight."  I fell in love with the little sheep climbing that steep hill in an effort to reach shelter before Santa arrives. And I even managed to suffer through making the French knot wreath on the front door (will I ever feel comfortable stitching French knots?!?). This one is stitched on 35 ct. natural Northern Cross linen with both DMC and overdyeds.

"Santa Arrives Tonight" by Homespun Elegance

I really wasn't sure how I would finish it, but ended up going with a flat, mounted ornament. (Vonna gives wonderful instructions on this type of finishing right here). It turned out a bit large for my tastes (the finish is 4 ½ inches wide by 5 ½ inches high), but I'm pleased with the final look. I know some of you struggle with sewing little pillow ornaments, but for me it's this type of finish which causes anxiety. I have the worst time getting the design centered!! Does anyone have any hints? I'll have to say it turned out better than most of my previous attempts, though, so I'm happy! I used an old flannel shirt for the backing and trimmed it with a gold cord in the same shade as the house. What do you think?

"Santa Arrives Tonight" finish

My July ornament is from an old Stoney Creek magazine (July/August 1994) and is called "Bird & Berries." This piece is stitched entirely in DMC on 40 ct. pearl gray Newcastle linen. A red berry bead was added in the four corners of the holly and also in the bird's beak.

"Bird & Berries"

For the finish, I backed the ornament with a soft black and white checked flannel (again, from one of my husband's old shirts) and ruched some red satin ribbon to apply on the sides. Chickadees are one of my favorite winter birds--I'm always in awe at the way these tiny things survive our sometimes harsh northern winters. So, this will make a perfect addition to our Christmas tree in December.

Finished "Bird & Berries"

The final bit of stitching that I can share with you (I've also been working on a couple of gifts which I can't show you today) is a piece I started back in June. My intention was to have it finished by the 4th of July. HA! Obviously, that didn't happen--maybe by July 4, 2014?  Many of you have already stitched "Betsy" by Sheepish Designs so you'll recognize my wee start on this one. I'm really enjoying stitching it, but I just can't seem to stick with one larger piece without getting my "smalls fix." I love the instant gratification I get from finishing a little pillow or ornament, don't you? 

A small start on "Betsy" by Sheepish Designs

Gifts arrived in my mailbox from "Jolly Old England" this month... I won a chart (CCN's "Party Cakes") from Mii's blog and when it arrived I found that the generous Mii had also included a packet of English tea and a bit of chocolate. Some confusion ensued as I thought the chocolate was liquid chocolate that you drank! When I wrote to Mii to thank her, I mentioned that we didn't have that here in the States. She replied that it must have melted as it was meant to be a thin bar of chocolate. Ha ha! Yes, as soon as I popped it into the fridge it hardened up into a delectable treat! Thank you so very much, Mii--I love the chart and, as you mentioned, those stitched cakes represent the best kind of baking--non-caloric!

Giveaway win from Mii!

Another treat arrived from my friend, Julie, also in England. Julie was raving about her recently acquired Turkish Delight candy on her blog and I happened to mention in my comment that I had never tasted it. I don't believe it is widely available here in the U.S. Anyway, sweet Julie decided it was an experience I shouldn't miss so she popped a bar into the mail and it arrived in fine shape. The piece she sent me was chocolate covered and was most delicious! I was surprised that it has a gel-like consistency inside--I was expecting a mixture of nuts and cookie. Thank you, my friend--you were so sweet to treat me to one of your favorite goodies!

A bar of Turkish Delight all the way from England!

I actually told Julie I was going to save the treat to eat while watching one of my favorite British shows--either "Downton Abbey" (I've been saving the last episode of Season Three to watch for a special treat--or a big cry as I've heard mention!) or "Call the Midwife."  Well, the Season Two DVD of "Call the Midwife" arrived at the library for me, so I promptly sat down to watch that and enjoy my very own bar of Turkish Delight. The Christmas special was so wonderful. I am thoroughly in love with this show--it makes me laugh and makes me cry with each and every episode. Some of the birthing scenes are a bit tough to watch, but the delightful characters, touching stories, and grim realities of life during the 1950s in the east-end of London are not to be missed.

In between stitching and reading and watching those wonderful British television programs, I've been doing a bit of organizing. I got so tired of searching through piles of charts for a certain one, that I spent all day Friday organizing them into notebooks. They are now placed in plastic sleeves alphabetically. Of course I have a giant notebook--the blue one in the photo below--just for my Prairie Schooler Collection! I may need two very soon as that is bursting at the seams. It was such a good feeling to get everything all tidied up...on to my freebies next! Here they are in resting comfortably in a cupboard right next to my stitching chair in the family room...



I don't have a ton of sewing threads, but, again, I got tired of hunting for the perfect color so I arranged them by shade in a drawer right next to my sewing machine. Pretty, eh?


Finally, my overdyed threads have been placed on a white pegboard attached to the inside of a closet door in my middle son's old bedroom (where I keep my sewing machine). The poor guy--every time he comes to visit, more and more of his room has been taken over by my stitching and sewing "stuff!" Here, I keep the WDW and GAST threads... Still have to make room for the Crescent Colours and other miscellaneous overdyeds. I would imagine more pegboard is in order for the other door!


I also need to tackle my ribbon and fabric collections, but I feel that I'm off to a great start. I suppose you would guess that since I am a librarian, I crave order--and you would be correct! When my house is cluttered or things are out of place, I just can't relax. For me, cleaning and organizing are very restful activities. Is anyone else like me, or am I just weird?!

Speaking of cleaning, the time had come for us to get a new washer and dryer. Although they were only 13 years old, you can just imagine the beating they took with doing laundry for three growing boys all those years. The dryer was stopping on it's own after only five minutes of drying and also leaving brown marks on the clothing. And the washing machine was rusting inside and making a burning smell. Definitely, past time for a new pair! So, look what arrived at our house last week...A spanking new washer and dryer--aren't they pretty? It's so funny to be excited by a pair of laundry appliances, but they really are a treat! There is just one "tiny" problem, however. The new washer lid won't fully open due to the cupboards above! I have to hold it open myself while loading or unloading the machine. You'll notice the new lid extends way out to the edge of the washer making it a good four or five inches wider than the old one! So, my husband and sons are trying to work out a system to hold the dryer up for me--either a pole of some sorts or a system of magnets... I guess nothing is easy, is it? But, I'm still thrilled with my new set-up!


I'll leave you with this pretty vase of flowers picked from our garden. Cosmos are some of my favorite summer flowers with their shades of pink, mauve, and white... My husband nicely shares his fenced in vegetable garden with me for growing my flowers, otherwise, our deer population would be mowing them down as soon as they appear! I'm so envious of those of you who have beautiful open gardens full of flowers--that just would never happen here with our hungry deer!


I wish each of you a happy last day of July and a wonderful month of August. I want to welcome my newest followers, too--so glad you're here! Thank you, as always, for stopping by today--I am so touched that you give up your valuable time to read and comment on my posts... Bye for now...

86 comments:

priscilla said...

Love your ornament finishes ,Carol ! I also L-O-V-E Betsy ! So nice that all your charts are organized ( wish mine were :)! I bet you are loving your new washer /dryer ! Hope they get the lid situation figured out for you soon !
Beautiful flowers !

Patty C. said...

Your finishing is great & I'm so glad you were able to enjoy some reorganizing - everything looks perfect!

Mii Stitch said...

Hi Carol! I simply love your 2 finishes! You always find the perfect fabric, ribbons or buttons :) Your new start looks very pretty too. Glad you enjoyed the melted chocolate bar :D and the Turkish Delight watching the best UK series at the moment (I fully agree!). Have a lovely day x

Krista said...

Great ornament finishes!! I can almost feel the snow in the air! :)
That Betsy pattern is the CUTEST!! Love all those bright colors!!
Enjoy the rest of your summer too!

Vickie said...

I just love Betsy! What a great pattern.
We seem to be having the same exact summer as you. I prefer this cooler weather.
I am somewhat organized, but not like you!! =)

Parsley said...

Great ornies! I need to get brave and finish some of my projects.

Oh how I smiled at your liquid chocolate. Lol! But the Turkish delight is something I've not seen or tried either.

cucki said...

beautiful finishes and great stitching.
the betsy pattern is so sweet <3
everything is looking so organised and perfect.
love x

Alissa said...

Carol,

I love your ornament finishes. They're really inspiring me to get some of my own done. Christmas will be here before I know it!

I also really like your organization tip for the patterns. Great idea!

P.S. Centering the design gives me anxiety too -- a lot of it!

Margaret said...

Lovely ornies -- you always make lovely ornies! Love your Betsy so far too! I want to stitch that one too someday. I love how you have organized your fibers, threads and charts. I need to get myself a peg board for my fibers -- and take over the closet in my DD's bedroom. lol! I hope your guys figure out a way for the washer lid to stay open -- that would be a pain to deal with. Lovely machines though! Lovely flowers too -- so pretty!

Melody said...

Hello Carol! Beautiful ornament finishes again. Your work always inspires me. :) Great job on organizing. I have had my charts in plastic sleeves in binders for awhile, but I'm not happy with the arrangement. They are grouped by subject now. I've been thinking about switching them to designer order.... Your new washer and dryer are lovely!

Gabi said...

and again as always, your ornaments are lovely. I like your organizing of threads, charts and fibres.
I can imagine how happy you are with the new washer and dryer, so am I with my new vacuum cleaner.LOL!
Big hugs from Germany

Elizabeth Ann said...

Love those little sheep going up the mountain and the cute reindeer, will have to find that pattern and I LOVE Betsy, is she still in print? When you are all organized there, you are more than welcome to come share your talent here....

Annie said...

Love your finishes. I think you've mastered the mounted flat ornament! Flannel shirt... who would have thunk it! Homespun elegance cuties are some of my favorites.

Betsy is progessing nicely. That's a pretty sampler

Fun to receive all of those gifts, especially with candy for your sweet tooth. Love how you are willing to drink it or eat it as long as it's chocolate!

The organizing bug really hit you! And leave it to you to make it all look so decorative.

Nice to have those men around to help with the cabinet issue. I'm sure it will all turn out well.

Mrs. GraceWorks said...

Beautiful ornament finishes, Carol! I really like the colors on your Betsy piece, too. I had to laugh about your drinkable chocolate. How funny!! : ) Your organizing looks amazing! What a great job, and how fun it will be to flip through those binders and see all the pretty charts in order!!

Have a blessed August!!

Tricia

Mavi. said...

Ohhhh ... Carol beautiful embroidery, as always and also super good finishes. I'm glad you enjoyed your mother with affectionate comments and I hope your father does not suffer.
I like to see everything so orderly in your home and with such beautiful views. If it is a pleasure to have new appliances and work perfectly. I used to be more orderly, now you get to live in the midst of relative chaos.
Happy August.
Kisses.

butterfly said...

Love your stitching again and your finish is always so amazing.
Almost another month gone !
My Grandmother came from poplar where the Midwives was filmed in east London it made me cry to see how they use to live. Times were very hard on the poor people back then.
Nice new washer and dryer .
I have been sorting out stash too. What I find it never goes back nice and tidy I end up taking up more space ha. Love your cosmos we have some new orange ones.

Kay said...

Love your ornament finishes!! I love Downton Abbey and Call the Midwife, I am anxiously awaiting the new seasons for both shows. For me Call the midwife always makes me cry. I love the new washer and dryer! In the months to come I have to go shopping for those as well, first on my agenda though is a new oven range in the weeks to come. Sending big hugs your way, I realize it has to be hard to see your father slipping away to dementia. My grandfather passed away from that about 10 years ago, it was not easy to see him the way he was at the end, he was not my grandfather that I remembered from when I was growing up. Hope you have a blessed August!

Robin said...

What a wonderful post, Carol! Your ornaments turned out super; congratulations on getting caught up! Betsy is off to a good start.

Enjoy your new washer and dryer as well as the pretty flowers from your garden!

Robin in Virginia

Melissa said...

I absolutely love your flat finish and I kinda think it would give me anxiety too. I can't imagine putting all that glue on something you've worked so hard on and then maybe just maybe have made a mistake. EEEEKKK I'm getting stress just thinking about it!!!

Love your new patriotic stitch - you can always aim for July 4 2014 ;) Plenty of time for little stitches then!

BrendaS said...

Carol -- Another great post! LOVE your ornament finishes -- you always inspire me to get busy and do one a month but then I never do...

Thanks for sharing your organizing tips. I use a pegboard system for my overdyed threads too. It's much easier to find what I'm looking for.

Congrats on the new washer/dryer. It's the small things in life that make us happy, isn't it?

Have a great weekend Carol!

Melissa said...

Carol, you always have the newsiest posts! The ornaments are lovely. I especially adore Santa arrives tonight. Betsy is such a fun stitch and you are off to a great start!

Organizing - yes I love it when I'm done but getting started and the chaos in the middle bits are the toughest! Your organizing efforts are looking great.

Enjoy your August. Hope you get some better weather!

Julie said...

Always love the way you do your finishes.The new series of Downton comes your way in December i think.I like watching the Midwifes too and being from East London try and figure where they are filming but a lot of those places are filmed in different parts of London and elsewhere..I have my patterns stored much the same but project themed.And i haven't seen Frys Turkish Delight in years,but then i haven't been looking,till now. :)

Friendship Crossing said...

Howdy Carol,
Your new finishes are sweet and so is the start of 'Betsy' ~ how cute!
Such nice goodies you received.
Never heard of that Midwife show, but I bet it's really good.
So fun getting organized too!

Hugs!
Tanya

Blu said...

Your new finishes are so pretty Carol!

I'm jealous of your well organized charts and floss. My charts are all just piled in a drawer at random. I always start to organize with the best of intentions but then get distracted by a chart and go off to start it lol

Annette said...

I think teh weather is awfull everywhere..
I hear is so much!

Your June and July piece are as always wonderfull made and beautifull finished!!!
How cool using a old shirt.. hihi

I don´t liek stitching large pieces.. I´m someone who love when it done fats..
When I+m working on something a months.. I get tired off it!!
This is a wonderfull design..
4 July 2014 you will make

Wonderfull goodies you got.

Great organizing .. It´s looking great..
I+,m reorganizing my attic.. we are just done with rebuilding.. I throw away 50 bags of stuffe I never never use!!
I found a lot of things I was lost..
Now I can craft again!!
Still many things need to be sorted out.. buit 75 % is done
Beautifull washer and dryer.. I alsways have a door in front....
Wonderfull vase and flowers..
have a great week!!!

LoriU said...

Another great post! Love the little smalls finishes, and I especially love the organizing you have done! The binders are a great idea!

Christina said...

Your comments about french knots made me smile Carol - I have exactly the same relationship with them - yuck!
I also gave a wry smile with your comment 'we've only had the washer/dryer 13 years'. Because of the hard water here we're lucky if a washing machine lasts 5 years! It always amazes me how different washing machines in the UK and USA are. We speak the same language so why the different appliances??? Lol!
Beautiful stitching as always Carol. I too prefer to stitch a pillow finish - so much easier.

boysmum2 said...

I love Turkish delight and luckily for me we can get it in NZ otherwise I may have to return to England!! Cute small finishes this month, so cute. We are just getting the 2nd of call the midwife on tv so am enjoying them too with my Turkish delight every Sunday evening, nice way to start the new week.

Linda said...

Great stitching and finishing as always Carol. Love the way you organized your floss.

Linda

Ellen said...

Beautiful ornaments! I always love your finishing! Betsy is pretty too, so colorful!

The cosmos are just so lovely! I have a love for flowers especially roses and sunflowers ha ha!

Enjoy the rest of your summer!

Hugs,

Mary said...

I love your new ornies, Carol. They are made even more special with the fabric from your DH shirts.
Betsy is coming along. The colors are so cheerful.

I'm glad that you enjoyed your chocolate in every form....haha
Oh yes, way to go!!

Enjoy your "new toys!" I agree that we do get excited with our home appliances. I asked for a freezer for Christmas one year and was promptly told that it "wasn't a fun gift!" I DID get it and had fun stocking all of the treats that everybody likes!

Have a good weekend ahead.
(((HUGS)))

Jennifer said...

Sometimes I cheat and substitute beads instead of doing French knots. Inevitably, I have a few okay knots, and a couple really nice ones, and I get frustrated that all the knots aren't nice. So if I can, I use beads and tell myself that it adds a little shine and interest to the piece. :-)

For centering, it might work to use a trick my husband uses for framing, especially when he's framing something with a stitched border that needs to be straight. He uses the chart I stitched from to find the center of the stitched piece and pins it gently to the center of the foam core he's mounting on, then works out from there to the center of each side. He pins from the center points towards the corners, pinning one side, then the opposite side to keep things evenly spaced. Does that make sense?

Love, love, LOVE the chickadee ornament. such a sweet finish - you're a pro at the ruched ribbon, which tends to frustrate me, but it's such a pretty look.

Your organization brings joy to my OCD heart.

Can the boys install some sort of magnet system inside the cabinet? With the doors closed, you wont see it, but it should be easy enough to open the cabinets while you're doing laundry and use a magnet, or even a hook, to hold the lid open.

An itch to cross stitch.. said...

Beautiful stitching as always Carol. I love seeing what ornament finishes you are going to come up with.
It made me laugh to see your stitching materials take over your sons room, I'm sure they don't mind! If it makes you happy. It's good you are trying to get organised.

Ooh we have those Fry's Turkish delight bars here in Australia, yummy! Glad you enjoy watching call the midwife. My mum has just given me season 1 on DVD, looking forward to watching it. :)

Lesleyanne said...

Gorgeous ornament finishes. Love Downton Abbey and Call the Midwife. I am currently watching the first series of Call the Midwife as I missed it first time round. Lovely gifts received. Your stash looks great.

Lillie said...

Fabulous stitching and finishes as always. Just love Betsy, had always wanted Betsy but it always got override every time I go stashing, LOL!

Love the idea of your pegboard for the ODs. Mine are all in boxes, not appealing at all :(

The flowers are so pretty.
Here's wishing you a wonderful month of August too :D

Manuela Albanese - Cross Stitch Designer said...

your christmas ornaments are really lovely !!!
Manuela

Elia said...

Wowww Carol cuántas noticias...
me gusta tu oveja escalando, es un motivo muy delicado y divertido, así también el pájaro, es muy bonito !!!

genial con tus nuevas compras, se ven muy bien y relucientes !!!
Y has tenido tiempo de poner en orden muchas cosas, yo también lo necesito !

Un abrazo muy grande a tu madre, me alegra saber que le gustaron los comentarios...
que disfrute de los momentos !!

Me he enamorado del cuadro de los pasteles, es tan dulce ;))

Un abrazo ya en agosto y que disfrutes de este verano un tanto loco por el clima y te puedas dedicar a lo que más te gusta

abrazos
y sé feliz

^^


Chris said...

We have been having rainy weather and cool temps here all summer. So strange for NC.
I love your ornament finishes. the Betsy start looks wonderful too, such fun colors in that design.
Your organizing looks great. This is something that I really need to tackle.
Have a lovely weekend. Happy August!!

Девушка с пяльцами said...

Carol, your new finishes are absolutely gorgeous! Love them! It's great you were able to enjoy some reorganizing - everything looks in perfect order!

Shirlee said...

Hi Carol! As always, I save your posts for last because they are so enjoyable to read : ) Your finishes are gorgeous, as always. As for hot vs. cool/cold weather,you know my thoughts on that : ) What nice gifts you received! John & I love British shows & when I read your thoughts on Call the Midwife, I called to him that we might want to get it. He answered "We already have it!" Hooray : ) We'll look forward to seeing it. Right now we are watching Endeavour ... the prequel. Very good! Congrats on your stash organization & your beautiful washer & dryer! Lovely flowers too : )

Brigitte said...

Oh great, some new ornament finishes. And great finishing as usual. I love the birdy design, it's so cute. "OH that's Betsy" I cried out when I opened your blog post. A wonderful design - and it's still in my stash, unstitched. I should pull it out and put it on top of my to-stitch pile.
Enjoy your gifts from the UK. They definitely have great sweets. Have you ever tried Maltesers? They are so good!
Oh yes, I love decluttering but only when I don't have any stress. I'm inmidst of decluttering and reorganizing my study and can't wait it to be finished and the way I want it to be. Good luck with the rest of your organizing.

Barb said...

Hi Carol, Your ornament finishes are wonderful and what a clever idea to use the old shirts. In the antique world(not that they are antiques!) one would say they have patina. The little chickadees are among my favorite birds so I fell in love with that design. I have no secret way of centering. Although I usually run it by my DH who was a mechanical engineer in his work life. He has a good eye for such things. Lovely garden flowers!

Melanie said...

I know, right? How is it August.....ALREADY?
I think the flat fold came out very nicely. I rarely do that type of finishing either, so no hints from me. :)
We get a ton of chickadees here year round and I love them. They are the cutest things.
Betsy is a great pattern! I don't think I've come across that one before. I love the sheep. And the colors. Of course. Can't wait to see it finished!!
I've never heard of Turkish Delight that was covered in chocolate. Um, YUM?
The organizing bit is awesome! I LOVE organizing things. It's like working on, and then completing a jigsaw puzzle. Huge sense of accomplishment when it is done. I have all my charts in a filing cabinet, separated by designer. Heh. I've yet to discover a good way to organize my linen, other than keeping it all together in one place.

thegreytail said...

ciao Carol!
I'm an organizing freak, I get that same soothing feeling in giving everything its place.
love the charts and your finishings, Santa Arrives Tonight ended straight into my shopping basket.
love the fact that you used shirts for the backing, pretty clever! :D
lots of hugs and happy xxx,
chiara

Barbi said...

Another wonderful post! The ornaments are so special, as usual! There is nothing silly about being excited about new appliances, I got a new dishwasher two months ago, and I kept opening and closing it to look at the shiny new stainless steel interior of it. My last one was old and had a plastic interior, so the stainless steel is breathtaking to me. LOL

Judy said...

Hi Carol. Your 2 ornaments are adorable. Perfectly stitched and finished. I agree, I like the pillow finish for ornaments.

We have the same organizational plan..I have all my charts in binders in plastic sleeves by designer. Plus I have 4 stackable plastic files with hanging folders with charts by season or subject. I do not have the peg board for floss. Just alphabetical on large rings by supplier. HMMMM...I wonder if I could get my husband to put up a peg board for me!

I'm glad you get to have a flower garden. They are beautiful.

Happy August.

Judy heartland stitcher

Cristina said...

I like very much this Santa design and your finish is sooooo cute.
I'm in love with your giveaway gifts...CCN designs are beautiful.
Hugs!

María Dolores Jiménez Acevedo said...

Son preciosos Carol, un beso grande

Anne said...

Oh those sheep climbing up the hill are so sweet! Love your flat ornament finish and I think it's perfect. I always worry about things being straight too but in the end it always looks fine. Chickadees are one of my favourite birds too. We have a lot of them in my home town up north. We feed them during the winter and I loved watching them perch on the clothing line all puffy and cute in the winter. That design is so adorable and your finish is beautiful. I have yet to try a ruched ribbon finish. Will have to someday. Betsy is a really pretty design with all its bright colours and motifs. Your charts and threads look great all organized. Wow you have a lot of PS!! Pretty cosmos too! They are such a happy summer flower. Hugs to you Carol!

Penny said...

Beautiful finishes, Carol! Love the little Chickadee! I know what you mean by your "smalls fix." Betsy is a lovely larger piece to work on - love the little black sheep. :) I'm in desperate need of some organizing, but don't want to miss one minute of stitching before school starts again. Things do go a lot smoother when everything is nice and organized though. :) Love brand new appliances. And those cosmos are so pretty! Need to add those to my to be planted list. :)

Lynn said...

I agree with you on the humidity Carol! I love the heat but it does me in every time. Fortunately it has left us for now.

Your ornament finishes are lovely! I had no idea that wreath on the door was all French knots! Amazing! I see we both had birds in mind for our July finishes. Yours is so sweet!

I was just told about Call the Midwife and I plan on borrowing the DVDs from a friend.
I love your pegboard idea for the floss. I've taken over my son's bedroom for my stash too. His closet door is rather narrow so I'm not sure if the pegboard will work there. Poor Daniel, his room looks nothing like what it used to, lol!

When we purchased our new W/D set we found that we could no longer close the louver doors that hid them in our bathroom alcove since the new appliances stuck out too much. I came up with the idea of a shower rod and curtain which was just the trick!

Michelle said...

Isnt it wonderful to sort out stash - I love doing this. Yours looks wonderful Carol. I adore your stitching - particularly the Birds and Berries xx

Andrea said...

Love the 2 pieces of stitching and the way that you have finished them. The chickadee is so cute and the red really sets it off so wonderfully well. Great re-organising. You keep putting if off but when it's done ... so rewarding to see what you have!
Have a great weekend.

Charlene ♥ SC said...

Your final finishes are just adorable - love the flannel touches! I think Chickadees are one of cutest birds, too. Betsy is definitely one of my to do one day pieces. Ah, organizing. I've always thought that any stitcher (or crafter) has a secondary love for organization, although I don't do as well as could be. Love your pegboard idea. I agree that is has been an unusual summer of weather. The humidity is what gets to me as well, and dreadful that it has only just begun! Be well, friend.

Kathy Ellen said...

It is always wonderful to read your posts, Carol and to see what you have been stitching. What perfectly delightful finishes for Santa Arrives Tonight and the sweet little chickadee.

'Betsy' looks like a wonderful design, and you have made a beautiful start of her.

I agree with you that it is always a treat, watching an episode of Downton Abbey or Call the Midwives. I have DVR's some of the episodes when they aired on Masterpiece Theatre, and am saving them to watch again.

Your organization of all of your stitching patterns, and threads is wonderful and inspiring. It really helps to have everything where you can just pick things out easily when you are ready to stitch.

What beautiful new washer and dryer! Isn't it funny how some of us women are just so tickled with new appliances? Hope that your hubby and son come up with a good solution to helping keep your washer lid open when you want to use it:)

Blessings, dear Carol!

Julie said...

Two beautiful ornaments Carol, your tree is going to look even more beautiful this year.

Your evening of brutish choccie nd TV programme sounds wonderful, I'm so pleased to have been able to send you something different to try.

Betty looks beautiful.

Great organising, want to come and do my stash.....I'll pay you in chocolate! Lol

Mary said...

As always, such sweet pieces and beautiful finishing! Isn't Turjush Delight well....a delight? The bit I've tasted was made with rose water.

Quiltsmiles said...

Beautiful finishes and love that you used an old shirt of your husbands for the back. What a great idea!!!
I too love organization and will serialize, alphabeticalize, and numerical order many items throughout my home and it's easy for me, but then typically DH will use whatever items and have no regard in the storage systems so I am also searching for whatever item he used or moved to get what he wanted. I kid you not, the kitchen is now His! lol
An idea I had for the washer dryer area when I saw your beautiful new appliances and wondered about is could those cupboards be raised and then a narrow shelf be installed underneath it for another area for some of your smalls to be shown? it could help with keeping the lid open besides give you another spot to share your love. Jane

Sherri said...

You always have the cutest ornaments. I love looking at them. I have to say, I like your ruched ribbon better than any I've seen as it seems to be a smooth round finish. Would love to know how you achieve that.

Scattered Threads said...

Carol, I love the finishes on your ornies and you always do a fantastic job.
So glad you were able to get away and visit with your Mom and Dad and that she was able to read all the wonderful comments…I know that just made her day:)
You have some fine friends everywhere Carol, ensuring you get the finest chocolate(s). LOL. That's great. Love it!
Love the organized folders, threads and floss. I have somewhat of an organized stash, but still find I spend way too much time looking for things.
Nice and pretty washer and dryer. I too was excited when I received mine also a couple years ago and it makes doing laundry a bit more pleasant. LOL.
The flowers from your garden are absolutely gorgeous. If I was a deer, I would chance at eating them too. Just beautiful!
Well my dearest, I've been much chatty, so I will close.
Hope you have a wonderful week.
Take care and hugs,
Jackie

Myra said...

I need to do some more organizing around here Carol. The bug usually bites me again when the weather gets cooler. Lovely ornament finishes but oh Betsy is a beauty. It won't be long before we fill the nip in the air, will it?

passionfruitprincess said...

I love your finishes, Carol! The flat ornament looks perfect!
And what a great way to organize your patterns! I hate when I have to "hunt" for things when I am doing a project, and organizing well makes a big difference.
Hope the boys can find a good way to fix the problem with the washer door. New appliances are exciting!
Have a wonderful day!
Ana Paula.

Angela P said...

Lovely ornament finishes and Betsy is going to be a lovely large design to finish. I'm torn between large designs and smalls too.

Call the Midwife and Downton are both wonderful shows. I love, love, love Turkish Delight.

All of your organizing looks wonderful!

♥ Nia said...

July was definitely a full month for me ;) heheheh

Your ornaments look beautiful as always!! :D

WOW!! Such a big collections of patterns :D Your house is a happy place! ;) heheheheh Wonderful organization! I need to find one of those pegboards, I'd really like one in my craftroom, looks so useful :)

Your new machines look like a perfect couple :D ehheehe
Our washers are different around here, it opens on the front, with a round door. Did you know that? :) Fun facts heheheh

Huge hug and a bundle of smiles for you sweetie!! :D

My Xstitch Place said...

gorgeous stitching, love your finishes

familiesadessaram said...

heel mooi, prachtig

Jennifer M. said...

Beautiful finishes Carol. They turned out wonderful as always. Vonna does have great tutorials for finishes.

Nice job on your organization. I hate cleaning. Its so hard to get the motivation to do it but its such a nice feeling when its all done.

Enjoy your new washer and dryer. It is fun having new appliances around the house.

Love the flowers too. :-)

Kate said...

Love that chickadee, Carol!

Catherine said...

Fabulous post, Carol! I always love seeing how you finish your pretty stitches. Oh, if you are in the organizing mood still, pop over to the east side, I have plenty I need help with! We finally took the plunge and got a new washer and dryer this year too ~ I never imagined I'd be so excited over appliances! Our dryer was newer, but our washer was about 20 years old ~ definitely time to go!
Beautiful flowers ~ hugs!

Deborah Schander said...

Those finishes are just perfect! Congrats on getting your charts and floss organized too. As a librarian myself, I know exactly what you mean about wanting everything to be in order and easy to find! :)

Poussy Stitches My Love said...

Oh I love the pictures, and very beautiful Besty ...

bisous bisous

Valma said...

2 beautiful ornaments again =)
each time you find the perfect fabrics, ribbons, buttons...and every simple piece is a delight =)
French knots, hahaha, I abandoned long ago to try and do them perfectly =)
I don't have enough supplies to be organised as you are =)
Just have my little craft corner in the laundry room upstairs, my little cocoon =)
I'm in love with Downton Abbey too !! I impatiently wait for the 3rd season which has not been translated yet and broadcast here...
I'll have to look what the show you're speaking about is...
I agree with you, British shows are very good those times (we just saw season 2 of the 'new' Sherlock Holmes and it was a delight =)
big big hugs to you sweetie
xxxxx

Wanda said...

Hi Carol,
Two more amazing finishes!I was laughing as you were talking about how excited you were about your new washer and dryer as I was excited last week about a new toilet! It is fun to organize. There is something very soothing and cleansing about it. It must have been particularly fun organizing your patterns and threads. I have some of my patterns organized by designer and some organized by season (which occasionally has resulted in the purchase of two of the same patterns). My DMC flosses are very organized but right now I have the overdyed threads each in their own box. It's fun to see and hear how everyone organizes their things.
Your flowers are gorgeous.

Thanks as always for sharing, Wanda

Phyllis said...

I just found your blog and became a follower! Love your ornament finishes! When I make the flat ornaments using mat board, I first find the center of the mat board marking an X from corner to corner and sticking a pin in the middle of the X. Then I find the center of the chart and poke a pin in the middle of the design going through to the mark made in the center of the mat board. Works every time!

Sally said...

You have been very busy Carol and as always I just love your ornaments. I really should take a leaf out of your book and finish mine much better.

Lovely gifts. Ooh Turkish Delight! One of my favourites!

Meari said...

Ooh, pretty flowers. :)

Beautiful finishes. To your question on centering. I find that lacing the stitching onto the cardboard first makes it easier to adjust it "squarely".

Nice gifts, too.

Congrats on the new washer/dryer. They look great.

Solstitches said...

Gorgeous stitching and finishing as always Carol.
I love Call the Midwife too and have read the books as well as watched the TV series.
It looks as though August has passed you by also.
I hope all is well with you and yours.
Hugs,
Margaret

Sofia Sana said...

Love Ur finishes..
Yes, that’s the point
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Jennifer said...

Hope to see a September post from you soon Carol. Perhaps you were away in August and now working . Hope all is well with you and your family and you are starting to work on your fall stitching , Jennifer

Heather said...

Hi Carol! I hope September has been cooler. :-) I love how you have organized your charts. I am going to copy your idea. I love Call the Midwife. It makes me cry and laugh. I love your ornaments, especially the chickadee one!
Love, Heather

Barb said...

Hi carol - just checking in to see how you are doing. Hope all is well with you and your family.

Nancy M said...

First I want to tell you that I know I had read and commented on all your last posts, but I did it from my phone and I don't see them anywhere! It was strange not to hear from you, because you are always so glad at replying to everyone's comments. Anyway....lovely finishes as always, I often think of you when I am trying my best to finish things! One tip about organizing, you might not have seen is the ribbons on tension rods and placed in an open shelf. I've done that in my cabinet and it works great!

Bekca said...

Beautiful finishes as always Carol, your Christmas tree is going to look delightful this year.
I love Call the Midwife too! It's such a heart warming show :)
Best wishes.

Berit said...

"Santa Arrives Tonight" is absolutely one of my favorite HE pieces--yours is lovely! I entirely know what you mean about it being large for your tastes (I've been on a "Make it smaller" stitching kick recently), but I think you did a great job on the finishing.

I haven't any tips, unfortunately; I need to do more finishing!!! I think it's been about a year since I finished something!!! :o (No, wait, I finished something in January. Still...)

I also ADORE organization/de-cluttering, though the excising-and-disposing (or recycling, donating, etc.) can be a bit exhausting--but the feeling you get later in the day or week--love it! Your thread rainbow is definitely beautiful!

Natasha said...

when you use those colored threads on your sewing machine do you wind a bobin of the same color or do you stick with a whote bobbin.

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