Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Five Friends Stitching

Hello, hello! I'm back from my stitching retreat and visiting my parents and find myself with only six weeks left until Christmas! How on earth did that happen?? Are the rest of you feeling like this year has passed in a blur, too? Seriously...I don't know where the past 10 1/2 months have gone!

Many of you have asked what stitching retreat I went to... Well, it isn't an organized retreat--there are no teachers, no classes, no "stuff" for sale. It is just five friends gathering together at a lovely bed and breakfast in the town of North East, Pennsylvania (yes, why a town in the northwest corner of Pennsylvania is named "North East" is a bit ironic, to say the least!). This is the fourth year that we've traveled from towns in Ohio, New York, and Pennsylvania for three days of stitching, chatting, and eating. I love the casualness of it--I am not a big group person. I tend to be a quiet, rather shy person and crowds just overwhelm me so this sort of retreat is just perfect for me.

This year we decided to have an exchange of gifts with absolutely no theme and it was such fun. We could stitch something, give something stitchy-related, or present one another with any sort of little remembrance. I chose to make these "A Spot of Christmas" scissor fobs designed by Milady's Needle (from the July/August 2009 Just cross Stitch magazine). They were stitched over one on 28 ct. tea dyed Monaco using a variety of overdyed and DMC threads. I added my own border to the design, though, rather than using the one charted.

"A Spot of Christmas" fobs

Here is a close-up of one of them. Can you see the little white snowflakes and the eyes in the bird and reindeer--so teeny!  I told my friends they could use them for fobs or Christmas ornaments and they seemed very happy with them...



Of course a scissor fob needs a new pair of scissors, doesn't it? I bought Kelmscott's primitive Vineyard scissors because the name of the inn we stay at is the Grape Arbor Bed & Breakfast so I thought the vineyard theme tied in nicely. I purchased the Kelmscott scissors from Anita's Little Stitches and just wanted to let you all know what quick and perfect service I got--thanks, Anita! To complete my gift I added a scented Banana Nut Bread candle and a bar of Dove chocolate...


I found these cute red snowflake boxes at my local dollar store to make wrapping the goodies up quick and easy... Here they are all set to go!


And what a great bunch of goodies I received from my four stitching friends...  We all agreed it felt like Christmas morning as we opened each gift!

From Linda, we each received a darling Lizzie Kate kit, some handy clips, a pad of paper and pen to write down those charts we must buy, and a magnetic pick-up wand for locating those "disappearing" needles. I have no more excuses for not finding those missing needles, do I?


Barb stitched us each a sweet sled ornament from Foxwood Crossings... How cute is that little snowman with the cardinal nesting on his hat? I'll have to order some of those little sleds for myself to stitch up for friends!


Lee, our fearless "leader" and chief organizer of this wonderful retreat, asked each of us what our favorite color was and proceeded to buy us a scarf in that very hue. Isn't it lovely? Everyone knows I'm a fan of any shade of blue and the blues  in Lee's scarf are particularly pretty.


And Pam made each of us an adorable table runner/mat appliqued with a circle of six snowmen. How perfect for my blue and white kitchen! She also included a lovely glass ornament for my Christmas tree.


Thank you Linda, Barb, Lee, and Pam for those gorgeous gifts, but even more thank you for your special friendships. I honestly can't remember the last time I laughed as hard as I did on our retreat. It was all just so much fun... and so easy. Simple, uncomplicated relaxation... And to make it even better, the inn has two resident cats who would occasionally park themselves next to me while I stitched. Talk about pure contentment... If you're even thinking about doing a similar retreat with stitching friends, I highly recommend it. We all met online and who knew that we'd all hit it off and our friendships would just keep growing each year!


BLOGGING SLOW-DOWN: Our get-together prompted a discussion of our blogs and blogging in general. All five of us have blogs, but they are in various stages from inactive to blogging just now and then. Lee started us all thinking about why we are blogging less and offers up some very good points in this post. I began blogging almost five years ago and posted once a week because I was stitching an ornament a week. But, since then the number of posts have dwindled each year until 2013 when I've barely posted twice a month.

Lee asks (in this post) why those of us who have blogs lose interest in updating? I think my problem is I tend to procrastinate and end up with these way-too-long posts and it seems overwhelming to me to sit down and write. Also, I'm one who only likes to show finishes or at least a good start on a new project. In other words, I want to have something interesting or something of substance to share with you. I have no cute pets or darling grandchildren to show photos of so I doubt that my everyday life seems very interesting to the outside world. I love my life, but to others it probably seems very simple... I keep having to remind myself that I started this blog only to keep track of my cross stitch finishes and I do want to try to keep that up. As a result of our discussions, my friend, Pam, has decided to revive her old blog, so why not run over and say "hello." How about you? How have your blogging habits changed through the years and why? And for those of you who have been blogging regularly for years, what motivates you?

GIVEAWAY WINNERS:  I was very surprised that so many of you entered the drawing for my little Thanksgiving pillow! Such kind comments were left and I would love to have something for each of you, but there can only be one winner and the winner this time is:

BARB (Wicked Stitcher blog)

Congratulations, Barb! Please send me your mailing address and I will make sure this little turkey gets to his new home by Thanksgiving! He has to fly clear across the U.S. to Washington State so it may take a while.I'll miss the little guy!

And the winner of the Shepherd's Bush "Give Thanks" chart is:

Chris (Tot Hill Farm Stitches blog)

Congratulations, Chris! I know you'll love stitching this as much as I did and I hope you will pass along the chart in a giveaway of your own after you're finished. I'll get this in the mail to you as soon as you send me your mailing address.

I'll leave you with the gorgeous first snow of the season which I awoke to yesterday morning. This was the view that greeted me as I looked out my upstairs window...

 First snow of the season: November 12, 2013

Our backyard looks so pretty with the blanket of snow and the hint of yellow leaves still visible on a few of the trees. And here is a close-up of our pond...so tranquil looking. I hope the fish are keeping warm somehow! Poor things--amazingly, they do survive the winter each year.

Backyard pond

Well, I do have more finishes to show you, but I'll save them for another post--this one is way too long already. Next year, I'm hoping to shorten my posts up and make things easier on myself (and on you, my dear readers!!).  Thank you, as always, for your kind comments and emails. I truly appreciate each and every one.  I've added a "Follow By Email" link to my sidebar since I've had so many requests for that. Hope it makes things easier for you to follow "Stitching Dreams". Bye for now...

88 comments:

Belinda said...

Sounds like you had a lovely time at your little stitching retreat Carol. What a wonderful yearly tradition. I love the scissor fobs you made for your stitching friends, just gorgeous.

My blog can be active at times and then inactive at others. It just depends on where I am at with my stitching or what's going on in my life. I also only like to blog if I have progress to share or have started/finished a project. I do love blogging though and reading others so its something I hope to keep up with. :) Like you said, its not the quantity of posts, its the quality.

The Queen Bee said...

Lucky us that we found each other!

Thanks for the 'shout out'. Now I just need to get out my camera and take some pictures to inspire some posts!

Pam

Dawn said...

So happy to hear you had a wonderful retreat. Lovely gifts Carol. Cute stitches shared.

Krista said...

It does seem that time has been flying! The snow was so pretty yesterday, a bit early but at least not so much!

Your scissor fob gifts are so sweet and the perfect holiday gift.

Re: you blogging question, I think for me I just run out of time, as I am working full time. I sometimes feel like I am pulled in too many directions. I enjoy posting and reading everyone's blogs, and so happy I have found a community who loves the same thing I do. Sometimes it is also because i have not had time to stitch and show and feel that others do not want to see non-stitchy stuff, although my last two posts were non-stitchy pics and garnered more interest than my stitchy stuff, lol! Have a great day!

CalamityJr said...

Your retreat sounds just perfect, with time to stitch and visit with great friends - that's the best you could ask for! Everyone was so thoughtful with their gifts, too, and you'll be reminded of this special weekend every time you use them. You are blessed!

Shirley TURNER said...

Hello from the UK!
I really enjoyed reading your blog, & your retreat sounds just perfect, I would love to do something similar.
Lovely to see the snow, it looks very beautiful in your garden.

Mii Stitch said...

Sounds like you really had a lovely time. This kind of retreat would suit me to a T too :) Not too many people, just a few friends is perfect. Love all the goodies you girls offered to each other, a very touching gesture :) My blog habits have changed a bit as time goes by. This is a stitching blog, so I don't want to elaborate to much on my private life but I only want to share my finishes when they are finished! So if it means having a few days (or weeks) without a post, so be it :) Congrats to the winner of your lovely giveaway & looking forward to reading an other post soon xxx

Vickie said...

That sounds like a super time with friends.
Your backyard does look wonderful.
Keep warm!

Mavi. said...

La primera nevada, madre mía, que frio.
Muy bonitos los regalos que has preparado y envuelto con tanta delicadeza.
Que suerte las chicas afortunadas de tu sorteo.
Muchos besos.

The first snow, my mother, that cold.
Very beautiful gifts you have prepared and wrapped so delicately.
How lucky your girls lucky draw.
Many kisses

Jackie said...

A small intimate stitch in with friends sounds like loads of fun! Lovely gifts you all exchanged as well.

The blogging slow down has hit me too. I'm working on getting out of it. I do enjoy hearing about bloggers personal lives and don't mind seeing a bit of that creep in.

Heather said...

Carol, I love all of the gifts! Your scissor fobs are gorgeous!!! How fun to be able to get together and stitch for the weekend. I am with you about big groups! ;o) We had our first snow yesterday too. Nothing stuck but it was fun to see it fall and the neighbors probably thought we were nuts out there taking a bazillion pictures! ;o)

Mrs. GraceWorks said...

What a beautiful post, Carol! And I found a new blog or two to stop at. How nice! Your retreat sounds SO relaxing and enjoyable, and the gifts made it all the more memorable. You have such a way with making things look beautiful! I love the fob and scissors and candle and CHOCOLATE... and then the crowing touch of the sweet little box. Just perfect!!

Enjoy your prelude to Thanksgiving!

Tricia

denise said...

sounds like you had lots of fun! congrats to the winners.

Vicki said...

The stitching retreat sounds so fun and relaxing. I'm leery of attending a large retreat where I don't know anyone. I'm basically shy, although I've learned to overcome it somewhat. Maybe I'll organize a "retreat" with my daughter and DIL one of these days! Your backyard is lovely in the snow..

Catherine said...

Wonderful catch~up post, Carol!! Your retreat always sounds so perfect to me!! Perhaps one year when the boys' schedules slow down, I can do something similar. What lovely and thoughtful gifts ~ given and received!! The boys were waiting for the snow, but sadly, it missed us....soon enough....
Congrats to your winners!!

Barb said...

I 'love to read your blog and I always think it's a happy day when you do post a new one, but I know everyone is busy so it is a treat when you do.

Your stitching retreat with just a few friends sounds so lovely and so much fun - your gifts to each other are so special.

And...congratulations to your winners - lucky ladies!

Robin said...

I was thrilled to see a new post, Carol! Your stitching retreat sounded fabulous and you gifted each other with perfect gifts! Thank you for sharing your winter wonderful land picture; hope the fish survived.

Robin in Virginia

PS Congratulations to the winners of your giveaways.

Kate said...

A delightful read as always, Carol. The scissor fobs you made are quite lovely. Loved your snow pix.

BrendaS said...

Carol -- Always so good to see a post from you! So glad you had a good time on your retreat and what wonderful things you all shared with each other! Good times and good friends are good for the soul.

We had a little bit of snow this week too. It was real pretty but I still want to enjoy the little bit of Fall we have left.

I hope you and your family have a wonderful Thanksgiving.

Take care my friend!

HUGS to you.

Cole said...

Sounds like a wonderful getaway with your stitching friends, your gifts to each other are great!

Congrats to the winners :D

Melissa said...

What a lovely retreat to look forward to each year! The gifts you made are just wonderful as are the gifts from the other stitchers.

Snow! I've been seeing snowing pictures lately. Is it usually this early? Here we just have lots of grey skies and rain!

Congrats to the winners of the lovely giveaways!

pam said...

the snow is lovely!

butterfly said...

looks like you had a great time at your retreat .
Love all your gifts the girls gave you.
Oh yes and just loved your gifts you gave.

Congrats to the winners of your giveaway.

Love your snow photos we had mr frost visit last night it is getting colder.

Looking forward to more posts from you , I always do.

Christina said...

Yes, please tell me where the year has gone.

Glad you had a good time with your friends and family. I do miss getting together with my quilting friends and doing our own retreat. But I just can't seem get back into quilting. I have found my way back to my first loves, books and cross stitch.

What lovely gifts you gave and received.

I don't blog for the same reason, I feel my life is very ordinary and don't feel the need to document it. Plus I stitch so slow that it would never be updated. LOL

Beautiful pic of the snow.

Kay said...

How wonderful, it seemed to be the perfect retreat to me. The presents are all amazing, it really seemed like Christmas.

Sally said...

I bet you all had an amazing time! Love all those sweet gifts.

Congratulations to all the winners!

Oooh how lovely your first snow looks. I'm rather envious!

LoriU said...

Hi Carol! Just yesterday I was wondering how your stitching retreat had gone! Glad you had a nice time. The little gifts you made for your friends are very cute, and that snowman sled is adorable!

I too am guilty of not blogging hardly ever. For me, I just feel I don't have anything to say really. So I post when I have a stitching finish, which is few and far between!

We also got snow yesterday here in Ohio. Too cold for my liking!!

Beth said...

What a nice retreat.. all the gifts so well thought out.

cucki said...

Aww I love snow so much...
Such a lovely retreat....sending you big hugs xx

Shirley said...

Your stitching retreat sounded fun and those ornies are so cute.

I think sometimes life gets in the way of blogging. In the uk we have had such hot weather this year that I had to make the most of it rather than sitting in front of a computer. That is my excuse anyway,LOL

take care, Shirley

Charlene ♥ SC said...

Your special retreat sounds like a great event! All the goodies look perfect for each one of you. How about that - the first snow of the season for you and for me on 11/12/13. Thanks for the follow by email - love it!

Linda said...

Lovely exchange gifts Carol. Sounds like you had a great time. Congrats to the winners.

Linda

Lisa T said...

I love your blog & am happy to have found you! Your stitching work is incredible. I for one would not mind seeing works in progress. :)

Great gift exchange & sounds like it was a great time too. Congratulations to the winners of your wonderful giveaways.

Lisa

Lynda Harrison said...

How good to hear that you had such a lovely and relaxing time at your retreat! I have been reading your blog for a while now, and look forward with pleasure to each post. I find it wonderful to read of ordinary people doing ordinary things day by day, just as I do, and the love of stitching is universal - stitches are such a lovely lot! Your love of your family, life and stitching comes shining through in every post, and it is an absolute joy to read! Have a happy day!

RuthB said...

While your retreat sounds heavenly, and I have to admit to being terribly envious while viewing your pics and talk of your weekend.... once I got to your pictures of your backyard after the first snow I thought -- Why would anyone go away from that?! :)

thanks for sharing!

Małgorzata Zoltek said...

Świetne spotkanie! Piękne prezenty. Masz już pierwszy śnieg-niesamowite. W Irlandii niestety to rzadkość :( Ale w Polsce skąd pochodzę zimy zawsze były piękne,śnieżne. Pozdrawiam.

The Inspired Stitcher said...

I always enjoy our visits. I'm so glad you had such a great time with your peeps. It's amazing how a retreat can refresh you.

RE-blogging, I tend to not want to show a bunch of progress pictures because I don't want to bore people. Since I started doing more samplers I feel like my post frequency has suffered since all I have is progress to show. I do like my smalls and hope to do more in the coming year. We'll see.

Deborah said...

The retreat sounds lovely. The gifts were all beautiful. I can't agree more about the lack of blogging. My life is perfect for me but I don't haven grand kids. I do put the cute dog in the blog. For me, it's just about the stitching. My goal next year is to blog more frequently. Who know show well I will do.

Annie said...

Glad to hear the retreat was such a success. Love your fobs.. I stitched that design when it first came out onto a card. So quick and adorable! And you really included nice goodies for accompaniment. Good thing because you got some excellent gifts in return.

What is that snow doing there this early! I want summer back!

marly said...

What a lovely box of gifts you gave. Glad you enjoyed the get together. I'm so sorry you said it was 7 weeks until Christmas! I was trying to avoid the reality! I feel a blog slump coming.

Margaret said...

Looks like a fun retreat with good friends and lots of goodies too! It's an interesting question about why people are blogging less. I do think a lot of us just feel that blogging isn't fulfilling the need we had once upon a time. There are faster ways of being social like Instagram, for instance. I'm still posting every week, but there are definitely times I think about cutting down. I always enjoy your posts, so don't stop!

Ellen said...

Wonderful gifts! I love your scissors fobs!

Glad that you have a great time at your annual retreat!

I also procrastinate and sometimes too lazy to post ha ha!

Hugs,

Mary said...

Your retreat sounds fabulous, Carol. The scissor fobs and treats are wonderful!
What a special time to be with fun friends who share a common interest.
Congratulations to your winners of the giveaways. Your stitching truly is a treasure to be gifted with.
Oh, the snow....I'm not ready yet but we did have flurries and lots of cold wind.

Have a good weekend, my friend.
((HUGS))

Barb said...

Wow! I COULD NOT BE HAPPIER. YOU KNOW THAT I THINK YOU DO AN AMAZING JOB FINISHING. I WILL BE SO HONORED TO HAVE ONE OF YOUR PILLOWS. I WILL HAVE IT ON DISPLAY FOR MY FAMILY TO SEE AT THANKSGIVING!!!LOVE THE SNOW PICTURES AND I WILL CHECK OUT YOUR FRIEND'S BLOG1

Vonna Pfeiffer said...

I've slowed down in blogging too, for many of the same reasons as yourself Carol, I lead a simple life, albeit hectic and I want to show completions not in progress. So.... Slower than most. Live your retreat post and I definitely will check out your cohorts blogs :)

Simply Victoria said...

Your retreat sounds like a perfect time away - with special friends and quiet. Love the gifts you gave!

Kathy L. said...

What a wonderful retreat. Your lovely gifts to each are so special.

Kathy

Sweet Sue said...

Snow here too Carol, brrrr. Cute fobs, am sure they will be treasured. Glad you gals had a fun time, sweet gifties too!

Mylene said...

Sounds like you had great fun with your friends meet-up. I so love the scissor fobs you've made for everyone. I never tried stitching on one over one, seems not an easy one.. Everyone's gifts are love too,looks like all are spoiled!

I haven't been blogging much during the summer, working almost 40 hours a week, not much sparetime for stitching so not much to show. Now is low season so almost no work, hope to get more time for some stitching.

Lesleyanne said...

Sounds like you had a great time atnthe retreat. Lovely gifts exchanged. Congrats to the giveaway winners. Gorgeous photos of your first snowfall.

Bekca said...

Your style of retreat sounds perfect to me, good company and plenty of stitching :) I hope you enjoy all of the lovely goodies you've received.
I'm terrible at regular updates, life just gets in the way sometimes. But I like blogging and sharing my stitching, so I always come back in the end.
Looking forward to seeing your recent finishes. I can't believe you've got snow already, although, if the temperature today is anything to go by, we might have our own white blanket soon!
Best wishes.

Shirlee said...

Lovely post my friend ... the retreat sounds perfect! Like you, John & I live a simple life that others would no doubt find to be extremely boring ... but we are happy & content & that's what's important : ) I always look forward to reading your posts. In fact, I usually save them until last so I can really savor them : )

Lesley said...

It is always lovely to see a post from you waiting for me to read in my blog feedCarol.
Your retreat sounds delightful.I,too,always prefer a small gathering of friends,especially friends with similar interests.
Lovely gifts given and received and great photos.

Lumiruusu said...

What a wonderfull post again!
The ornaments You have stitched are very pretty an I like the finishing too! Thank You for visiting my little blog and leaving such a friendly comment!! :)

Chris said...

Good Morning Carol!
Thanks for making my week extra special. I have emailed you with my address :) After stitching the chart I will pass it on :)
Your retreat sounds wonderful. What kind an lovely things you all exchanged.
I know that my blogging slow down has been due to a lack of stitching this year. I really need to get back to it. I miss it. I enjoy sharing my adventures but work gets in the way of that too :) I love seeing everyone's progress and projects. It inspires me to keep stitching!
Hugs!

feather-stitching.com said...

Your retreat sounds wonderful and you gave (and received) some exquisite gifts!

As for blogging, I think a lot of my 'old blogging pals' have given up the blogging ghost, or so it seems - I know my situation changed when I moved to a 1/2 to 2 hour commute each way to/from work and I barely had spare time to stitch never mind blog about it ... and I ended up spending more time on Facebook because it was quick and simple ... I've just started blogging a bit more regularly again, though, and finally going back to catch up on others blogs are a two-year reading hiatus ... my department is finally moving back closer to my home again next month, so hopefully that will make it easier to keep up-to-date more regularly once again ... I miss reading blogs, it's so much more entertaining and personal than FB!!

Meari said...

Beautiful backyard photos. We got a light dusting of snow here earlier in the week, too. It's supposed to get to 60 this weekend so, it'll be gone soon. I'm definitely not ready for winter!

Sounds like your little retreat was fun. Lovely gifts from you all.

Christina said...

Dear Carol - I LOVE to read your blog...it matters not how often you update it - I would read it even if you only updated once a year!
The gifts you exchanged at your retreat are beautiful. I especially like the boxes in which you packaged up your gifts. I simply must come to the States soon just to visit the dollar store! My dad is working in Texas at the moment, but he's 6 weeks on, 2 weeks back home so we don't really have a good enough excuse to come and visit. You also reminded me how much I love those little sledge ornies. In fact, I had planned to make those for friends/family this year...oops! Next year perhaps.

Keeper of the Crowes said...

Such lovely gifts! Your backyard looks like it should be on a Christmas card.

priscilla said...

Such pretty gifts for your friends , Carol ! Can't wait to see what else you are stitching ! We got that snow too , its almost gone now and supposed to be almost 60 this weekend . Your yard looks so pretty !

msmartello said...

Hi Carol,
Sounds like a fabulous time and what great gifts you gave and received. I would love to start something similar with a few friends on the off year of our retreat. That would be so much fun. After my holiday stitching I will work on that. Love your pond. What great, relaxing place to sit and stitch. When the weather is nice of course! LOL!
Take Care
Maureen

Elia said...

BEAUTIFULLLLL!!! CAROL

Your backyard is like Cristmas, I like so much ^^
very cold, this is true ^^

lovely all this gifts!!

lovely post my friend,

hugs !!

^^

Elizabeth Ann said...

Oh dear snow.... Happy that you got it and not us at least for this week. Yesterday was t-shirt weather for a whole day, today we are back in cozies and thermos, I know that stuff is right around the corner..... Love your presents that you gave and sweet ones you received. I am so happy you had a good time!

Valma said...

I'd love to join such a retreat ! it seems you had a very great moment and I'm jealous =)
very beautiful gifts offered and received
I love the boxes you found !
each detail is perfect ...as usual :)
I must admit that I also blog when I have a finish done (that's why there can be weeks before any update ! I stitch but don't finish my pieces quickly and I don't like posting WIPs =D ) and also the places we visit with hubby...because of my situation we 'travel' less this year...so less posts in 2013 ! I really hope it will change next year !!
congratulations to the lucky winners
have a great weekend my sweet friend
big big hugs
xxx

Lois said...

Goodness, snow! Hope it didn't stay around for too long! How lovely to get together on your retreat. It's always nice to get-together with fellow stitchers and friends. Seems like many of us are having blogging burn-out at the moment. I know I haven't posted as regularly this year, time just seems to get away from me. Love all the goodies that you exchanged and lucky Barb and Chris winning your giveaways!

Lee said...

Oh Carol, I think you described our weekend perfectly! I hope your visit with your parents went well. You were in my thoughts that week.

Pam in IL said...

Wonderful retreat and I love all the things you and your friends gave each other!

Congrats to Barb and Chris too.

Your backyard looks wonderful in it's winter beauty.

passionfruitprincess said...

Hi, Carol! I am glad you had a good time! Lovely gifts, the little sled is darling, i love it!
And you yard looks wonderful!
Have a wonderful day and enjoy your weekend!
Ana Paula.

Karoline said...

Sounds like you all had a wonderful time at your retreat, everyone's gifts are lovely.

♥ Nia said...

That retreat sounds so fun and cozy at the same time :) Big groups can be fun to meet friends and different persons but small groups are as fun!! We just enjoy in a different way, I think we enjoy it more. I would love to have a weekend out with other 3 or 4 crafters :)
Wonderful gifts!! And so lovely :)
Congratulations to the lucky winners!! :D

I really think I still post a lot on my blog, even now, during pregnancy. I've seen so many people slowing down and saying it was all about the pregnancy.. not me. I still have a lot of motivation to post.. I just have fun with my blog! I can't tell you what motivates me more than that.. I think it's just so fun to share with my blogger friends :) I really enjoy it.
I like to keep it interesting too, of course ;) heheheh I always try to post pics, I think it's nice for those who visit and read, images are always nice to watch.. I think! :) And I try not to make long posts, because I blog in 2 languages, you know. I try to share themes along posts! heheeh
I will visit your friend's blogs for sure ;)
hugs!!!!

Andrea said...

Your gifts given and received are all beautiful. It sounds an idyllic retreat, no pressure to do anything, just do what you want, when you want, with good friends.
No, not snow just yet, please tell me it's not coming across the pond.

Michelle said...

Carol it sounds like you had a lot of fun on your retreat. How lovely to get together. Stunning photos I so enjoyed looking through them. Its getting cold here in the UK at the moment with a little snow forecast this week xx

Donna said...

I loved your update, thank you. Your gifts are beautiful and what fun it must have been to share with a few friends on your retreat. I think I can wait on the snow until Christmas Eve
have a good week

Rachel said...

I hope I'm able to attend a retreat some day! What lovely, sweet little gifts!

Brigitte said...

You all must have had a wonderful time together with lovely gifts, beautiful stitching and interesting talks and discussions. And a lot of laughing, I'm sure.
And yes, you are right, this year went by in a gallop - but it seems that the older I get the faster time passes. But that's what my dear mom always said, lol, so it must be a general feeling.
We saw our first snow in October in the Rocky Mountains, but I hope that it will stay away from here still a bit longer - I'm not really ready for snow yet.

Myra said...

I can't believe we have had snow here already too Carol. Your gifts for your friends are just fabulous. I know they were thrilled. It sounds like such a wonderful getaway.
I also can't believe Christmas is almost upon us. Mom was right when she said the older we get the faster time flies.

Anne said...

Very sweet little retreat the four of you planned. I adore the little fobs/ornies you made for them as well as the gifts they made too! That applique snowman runner is so beautiful. The sleigh is adorable!! I can imagine stitching a whole bunch of those and hanging them from the tree! As for blogging, my thinking is in alignment with yours. I always feel I need to have some sort of stitching to show if I post because I set mine up as a stitching blog. Time is also another matter for me. I will definitely go over and say hello to your friends!! Congrats to Barb (lucky gal) and Chris!! Hugs

Katie said...

That's my kind of retreat:) Ours is very informal as well. For me it's just under 2 days dedicated to kid free stitching :)

Cari-in-VA said...

Your retreat sounds lovely and relaxing! Your scissor fobs are so sweet!

Lillie said...

What a great retreat it must have been. Beautiful fobs given away and lovely gifts received in return.

Love your blog post, never a dull moment and am always inspired by your stitching and finishes.

Escargopotte bordados said...

Hello Calol! lovely embroidery! and killed already have snow at home? in Paris it's still nice but it rains ....
good week to you and thank you for showing us these wonders.

Michelle said...

Sounds like a wonderful retreat, with beautiful gifts given and received! I must say, that sled ornament is too adorable for words!

Cindy's Stitching said...

How pretty Carol. Yes, time has passed in a blurr. I am looking forward to a new year. The ornaments you did are so pretty. Your little touches add just the right finish to each piece. I am glad you had fun. Winter is here :( I am a summer person. As always your blog brings a smile to my face.

Julie said...

Your time with friends sounds so wonderful Carol, such beautiful things you gifted each other.
I too have blogged less this year, the whole year seems to have whizzed by and I have intentions if showing pics and writing and before I know it another weeks gone by. I also seem to be spending more time with people locally having made new friends through my Book Borrowers group and computer time is less.....hence I am catching up here long after you posted. Although, I have been sick this past week with a cold so that's not helped either.

Giovi's Creations said...

Dear Carol,
What a lovely meeting and interchange... it's a great idea!
Interesting your notes about the 'hard life of bloggers' It's difficult to write every week, isn't it?
Congrats to the winners and have a nice week there!
Giovi

Kay said...

Your retreat sounds like it was so much fun!! I love the fobs you made! Wonderful finsihes that everyone gifted to the others in the retreat. I love the pictures you shared of your snow covered yard, so beautiful. Autumn and winter are my favorite seasons! Happy Thanksgiving!

Melanie said...

I'm terribly, terribly behind on leaving comments but I was determined not to miss even one of your posts. I have 100% dedication to 'my' Carol. ;)
I'm glad I didn't miss anything - the ornaments you stitched up are ADORABLE. Just perfect, perfect, perfect! The package as whole is just fab and I'm sure they were well received. I'm glad you had such a great time.
I've gotten things in the past from Anita and I have to agree - WONDERFUL vendor to deal with. Couldn't ask for any better!
I definitely go through periods where I blog very, very little but I always come back to it. It's harder, also, because I actually have TWO blogs to keep up on. My 'beady/crafty' one and my more personal one at Livejournal. (Which is set to private and the people I know there have all been with me for over a DECADE, which is insane.) I've been posting more over there since summertime when I started doing the weekly Fresh 20 menu plans (no processed food thing) and talking about my experiences with it so I haven't had as much 'gas in the tank' for my Blogger. Add in a busy work period, new kittens and.......something has to give. Also, I think people tend to start leaving less COMMENTS first, before they start doing less blogging, which causes people to comment less on YOUR blog, which can make it less fun and more likely you won't keep up with it. Because let's be honest - we all do like comments. That's why it's so important to me to really make the effort to get out there and comment. Not to ensure I get more BACK but because I WANT THE PEOPLE I LIKE AND ENJOY TO KEEP BLOGGING. I LIKE reading and being inspired and awed and having all that creativity around. It totally deserves a comment. :)

Nancy M said...

Lovely gifts and I'm sure a fantastic time together. I too have met a group of online friends and we have gotten together on a few occasions. But I think our group is a bit more spread out. Tx, GA, NC, NY, Mi you get the picture. I went to lees blog before you told me too and enjoyed reading about her "reasons for not blogging" I'm definitely not blogging like I used to. I think the ease of posting a photo on FB or Instagram is so much easier and quicker than trying to figure out what to write about. I am not a writer and don't pretend to be one. At first I tried to keep my stitching out of FB, but now there are so many xs groups on there I find it simpler. I still follow lots of blogs but to be honest they are the last thing I get to anymore. I do so much on my phone now and reading blogs isn't very easy on them. I'm moving my mom to an apt on dec 11 so this month will be crazy! Hope you have a wonderful holiday month!