Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Finishes and Florida

HAPPY TAX DAY EVERYONE! Here in the U.S., April 15th is always a day of celebration at the library where I work: no more requests for tax forms, no more people taking out their frustrations with the government on us, and no more questions like "which form do I need to use"  until next year! My co-workers and I can go back to being librarians rather than dispensers of tax forms. So, are you done with your taxes? I hope you're getting big refunds this year (or at least enough of a refund to buy a bit of stitching stash!)...

ON THE ROAD AGAIN...  I don't have much to show you today as I've been traveling. Last week, my husband and I went to visit his parents  in Naples, Florida (otherwise known as one of the most beautiful cities in America) and today I leave for New York for a long overdue visit with my mom. I've been struggling with some eye issues for the past two months and with almost weekly visits to the eye doctor, I haven't been able to get away to visit her so I'm really excited to be heading north in a couple of hours.

I do have one finished spring ornament to share with you today which I stitched for my friend, Nathalie (no blog), in France. This is a freebie from Kissy-Cross which you can find right here. There are a lot of cute freebies on her site, so check it out. Nathalie has a March birthday so what better thing to stitch for her than a spring scene of birds and flowers. I stitched this on 40 ct. white Newcastle with DMC threads and used the pretty bird fabric (a gift from my sweet friend, Lois)  for the backing. It stitched up fairly quickly; in fact, I think the finishing may have taken longer than the stitching!

Gift for Nathalie

While I was in Florida, I stitched my Christmas ornament (for March--I'm a month behind, already!), but, unfortunately, I've had no time to finish it. Although this Country Cottage Needleworks design (from the 2013 Just Cross Stitch Ornament issue) is called "Snow Birds," these birds were so reminiscent of the shore birds I saw on my Florida trip (you'll see my photos below). I've always loved this piece and the white pops so well on the 32 ct. dark gray linen. For once, I didn't change a thing--all of the DMC colors are exactly as charted!

"Snow Birds" (Country Cottage Needleworks)

I'm so enjoying my Prairie Schooler Santa SAL each Sunday with Melissa and Hilda and have managed to finish my third Santa. This green-robed fellow is from Book No. 43: "Father Christmas." The only change I made to the suggested DMC colors was to the teddy bear in Santa's bag; I used DMC 610 for him. I was a bit worried about the shades of green and red when I first began stitching, but I really love the final look.

Prairie Schooler "Father Christmas"

MAIL CALL... The mailman was kept very, very busy over the past few weeks delivering packages from stitching friends.  From the always thoughtful Vickie, came this cross-stitched bookmark--a thank you for some fabrics I sent her for her pink quilt project. Vickie's stitching is so tiny and precise on this William Morris inspired design--just lovely. Thank you, my friend--you know it will be put to good use--after all, I am a librarian!

Thank you bookmark and card from Vickie

My sweet friend, Cindy, in Tennessee, surprised me with some wonderful Easter gifts. She (along with anyone who reads my blog!) knows how much I love bunnies so she included a burlap bunny with two felt orange carrots and a trio of black and white bunnies. It was a pleasure to add these to my Easter decorating this year, Cindy, and I know the bunnies will bring smiles for years to come. I just love them!

Easter gifts from Cindy

And to add to those surprises, I also received three gifts from overseas. From Gabi in Germany (no blog), came this darling and beautifully stitched Easter bunny (are you sensing that everyone knows I like bunnies?!) ornament and two pretty wooden eggs with flowers painted on them. Gabi, you are always so kind to remember me throughout the year--your little stitched pieces are always so sweet. Thank you, my friend! Your gift is adorable...

Easter gifts from Gabi


From Nathalie in France (no blog), came the most darling chocolate and caramel bunnies (most of which are now eaten), a French stitching magazine, and a pretty tea towel. The bunnies were almost too cute to eat--almost! I love your spring gifts, my friend--thank you again for thinking of me at Easter time!

Easter gifts from Nathalie

And from Gabriele  in Germany came this wonderful assortment of goodies which included a trio of little hens sitting in a wispy nest, some pretty fabric and trims to aid in my finishing, a lovely chart, and a cute little candle shaped like a crocus bulb. But, the highlight of this gift package was the stunning cosmetic bag that Gabriele made.

Gifts from Gabriele

I've put together a little collage of Gabriele's lovely cosmetic bag so you could see all the perfect details--the zipper-pull shaped like a leaf, the lovely ribbon inside the bottom of the bag, and the pretty lace. Gabriele told me that the fabric is vintage--over 50 years old--and is from Bavaria. I was so honored that she would choose to use such special fabric on a gift for me. Tucked inside the bag were some fragrant wipes and soap, a pretty tin, and the cutest bunny tissues. Thank you, dear Gabriele--I will treasure your gifts and I thank you for your friendship!

Cosmetics pouch from Gabriele

What wonderful gifts, don't you think? I have never met a single one of these lovely stitchers, but I feel like I could just sit right down with any of them and chat away like old friends. I feel very blessed to have "met" so many wonderful stitching buddies over the past six years since I started blogging. Thank you all so very much!

FLORIDA TRIP... I can't tell you how nice it was to feel the sun and walk outside with no heavy jackets or hats for a few days last week. After the horribly long, cold winter (and spring!) that we've had here in the northeast, I welcomed even the extremely high temperatures (in the 90s at times) with open arms. As I walked around Naples, admiring the lovely houses, flowers, and landscaping, I thought about how different life would be in a warm climate. I do love seeing the four seasons, but I just wish the winter season was a lot shorter and the others a lot longer. Hopefully, we'll be able to head south for a couple of months each winter when we retire. Does anyone else have a favorite city in the south to recommend for a winter visit?

Everywhere I looked, I spotted blooms--in every color of the rainbow! Below is a collage of just some of the glorious flowers I took photos of on our daily walks. You can click on the collage for a better look...

Florida flowers pop with color!

And everything was so lush and green! Here in western Pennsylvania, the lawns are just starting to green up, but we have no leaves on our trees yet and very few things growing other than the leaves beginning to sprout from tulips and iris bulbs. Can you see the large cluster of coconuts in the middle palm tree? I can't imagine what would happen if you happened to get hit on the head with a falling coconut!

Palms, ferns, and ficus abound

On our beach walks, the birds were everywhere. Just look at this assortment... They are all quite timid when you try to get near them so they made it hard to get good photos, but I managed to get a few. There was such a great variety of seabirds on this one beach in Naples.

Shore birds on Naples beach

My husband noticed this line-up of birds--each had his own perch! And it looks like there is one bird in the water just waiting his turn for a seat!


My favorite birds were these cuties! Just look at the expression on the one in the front--so comical! And I love the black feathers sticking straight up on the bird behind him. Does anyone know what these are called?

"Hey, what are you looking at, lady?!"

There weren't many good shells laying on the beach this year. Years ago, when we first began going to Naples (in the early 80s), we could find many. But, this year all we found were lots of little shells like this. This was an unusual amount all washed up together. I thought they were quite pretty with the rocks and the blue hues of the Gulf of Mexico behind them.

Shells on Naples beach

And just look at what swam right underneath the pier as we were standing there--a dolphin! I was lucky to have my camera in hand and ready to go. I'm really pleased with this picture... I was actually even closer to a dolphin once before. Years ago, on a trip to Bermuda, my husband and I actually got to "swim with the dolphins"--what an amazing experience! To hold a dolphin's head between your hands and gaze into their eyes was very special.


I hope you enjoyed my Florida photos... We're very lucky to have a nice place to stay when we go down each spring--my in-laws have a lovely house with a separate apartment above their garage so it is perfect for visitors. We helped with the cooking and grocery shopping and even went to the library for them--I never pass up a chance to check out a library and believe me, the Naples library is a beauty!

Well, I need to finish packing and get on the road for the five hour trip to New York. But, before I go, I want to share another cookie recipe with you. This one is my youngest son's favorite: Outrageous Chocolate Chip Cookies. Not only do they have chocolate, but also peanut butter--and who doesn't love that combination? I made these two weeks ago when he was home for a (way too short) visit and then again on Monday to take into work to share with my co-workers. Everyone loved them--hope you will, too! I managed to snap a photo before they were all devoured...

Outrageous Chocolate Chip Cookies

I am way behind on my blog reading, but hope to get caught up over the next week. Thank you all so very, very much for the wonderful comments you left on my last post. I was truly surprised at how many of you loved my bunny stitching. And I want to give a warm welcome to my new followers--so happy to have you here! Please remember to leave your email if you have a question you would like me to answer--otherwise I have no way of getting in touch with some of you. Have a great week everyone--and happy stitching! Bye for now...

84 comments:

Mii Stitch said...

Carol this is another fabulous post from you! I simply love your stitching and finishes :)
Your friends have also been so kind and sent you the most precious gifts.
Have a lovely time away with your mum x

Brigitte said...

Another post full of the most beautiful pictures. That little heart ornament you made for your friend in France is so darling, and as usual so beautifully finished. Kissy-Cross has such nice freebies but I hadn't seen this little bird couple before. Your March ornament is looking great on the somewhat dark fabric. And wow, another nice PS Santa for your Santa SAL.

Great gifts that you received from your friends, all the littlebunnies and hens and eggs, so sweet. Not to forget the chocolate bunnies, very sweet, too, lol.

Thanks for sharing the great pictures from Florida. Walking along a beach at this time of the year with summer temperatures sounds like a dream to me. Have a great time in New York, too.

Nancy said...

Your stitching and finishing is as beautiful as always Carol! Glad you were able to have some time away!

Stitching Happy said...

What a lovely post!
Beautiful photos and gorgeous stitching. You got some lovely Easter gifts.
I hope you enjoy time with your mum.
Happy Wednesday Carol x

The Queen Bee said...

Oh..lovely stitching...both yours and the ones you received.

Well, you already know the neck of the woods I'd suggest in Florida! You'd already have stitching friends.

I'll wave from across the lake...

Pam

Lee said...

Dave and I have come to love St. Petersburg, so add that to your list of Florida cities to visit!
Have a safe and wonderful trip to your mother's and we'll talk when you get home!

Beautiful stitching as always.

priscilla said...

So glad you had a nice trip to Florida Carol ! Love your two stitched pieces and both have been addded to my must stitch list :) ..Such nice gifts you have received ! Hope you have a wonderful visit with your Mom and that your eye problems get better !

Kate said...

Love your post, Carol, with all the beautiful pix and stitched pieces.
Thanks for the link. Enjoy your visit with your mom.

Elizabeth Ann said...

Thank you for showing the lovely sunny pictures! We had a cold wind yesterday and I thought we were going backwards to winter again! Now I can see why people retire to Florida - its wonderful! Have a wonderful visit with your mom and hopefully your eyes get better and better each day!

Lynda Harrison said...

Hi Carol!
How lovely to read your post and see the beautiful photographs there. Your stitching is, as always, wonderful, and a real pleasure to see. I always look forward to reading each new post - and it never, ever,
disappoints!!
I hope you are all ok, and I will write soon. Take care, and have a lovely (hopefully sunny!) week!
With love,
Lynda.

Barb said...

Oh Carol, what a wonderful post. You never fail to delight us with your wonderful stitching and great pictures.

I love the photos from Naples (I've never been there) - our weather is so much like yours - the grass is just starting to green up, but no leaves on the trees, no flowers in bloom yet - I'm always so envious of those places that already in bloom!

Have a safe & happy trip to see your Mom and take care of your eye.

I really owe you an email but so much has been going on around here - hard to find time to for all of it.

Hugs to you - xo Barb

Christina said...

I love to read your blog, for some reason it always makes me happy. Your birds are adorable and the finishing is just perfect. All of the lovely gifts you received are just beautiful. Great pics of your trip to FL. Hope your eye trouble goes away. Have a safe trip and a wonderful time with your mom. Will have to give the cookies a try, they look yummy.

Robin said...

What fabulous pictures to see this AM! It looks like you had a wonderful day in Naples. Your finishes are lovely and thanks for the link. Have a safe trip to your Mom's and enjoy the time there.

Robin in Virginia

PS Yummy looking cookies on that adorable bunny plate.

Jan Doling said...

Carol, what a wonderful post. Lovely stitching (I love the snowbird ornament), bunnies (so cute) and wonderful photos of Naples in Florida. Your bird photos are stunning, think those birds with the black spiky heads are Sandwich Terns, or at least that is what we call them in the UK. Have a wonderful time in New York and I look forward to your next blog post. xx

Ali said...

What beautiful Easter gifts you've received and sure to be treasured. Loved the holiday snaps those birds were quite comical sorry I can't help with identifying them they just look like gulls to me. Ali x

Barbi said...

Wonderful post Carol! I love the bird photos on the beach. I don't know what it is about birds, but I just can't get enough. Your March ornament is also one of my favorites out of that magazine, I just recently stitched it and can hardly wait to see it hung on my tree.
Have a lovely visit with your Mom :) Hope your eye is ok and it's nothing serious.

The Inspired Stitcher said...

What a great fun filled post today. I really enjoyed the Florida pictures. Being land locked myself, it makes me wistful for the sand and warmth. I'm glad you had a nice visit. I hope your visit in New York is good as well. Have a lovely time and be safe! {{hugs}}

LoriU said...

AH those Florida pictures made me feel warm!

I have to tell you, I showed my husband the line up of birds each on their own perch....he said "that's the port-a-potty line up" LOLOLOL MEN!!

Thanks for sharing the cookie recipe. I love baking!

Vickie said...

OH MY GOODNESS CAROL! I think I must visit Naples! Those pictures. One after the other, I thought this is AMAZING!!! Wow, such beauty!
I love the Kissy Cross finish you did. I mean love it!!
I think you might be well loved by us Carol. ;)
Have a wonderful visit with your mom.

Ranae said...

Lovely packages you received and gorgeous Florida photos, i do hope your eye problems get better real fast
Take care

Julie said...

What a fabulous post. A could write something about each and every picture..... the expression on your birdie friend made me giggle.
Have a wonderful visit with your mom
{Hugs} x

Melissa said...

Beautiful stitching and lots of beautiful gifts! What a lucky girl you are! Glad you had a nice trip!

Ann at Beadlework. said...

Lovely stitching and lovely gifts Carol. Your trip to Florida looks wonderful, I'm so envious:-)
I hope you enjoy your trip north. Those sea birds made me laugh - they are so comical.

Daniela Bencúrová said...

Dear Carol, you have a sweet gift!
Your works are wonderful!
Beautiful photos from Florida!
We still do not have leaves on the trees, blooming daffodils, as with you:-)))

Preeti said...

Your finishes are so lovely, Carol!! :)
The gifts are all wonderful , especially, the cosmetic bag!!
I loved seeing your vacation pics.

Dani - tkdchick said...

It sounds like you had a great time in Florida and I wish you safe travels to New York and a good visit with your Mom!

As always your stitching and finishing is just lovely.

You have the most generous of friends. Lots of lovely mail!

Amanda said...

The birds with the black caps are royal terns; the guys in back of them are cormorants. The delicate fellow wading in the surf is a snowy egret and the white birds with the red, down-ward curved bills are white ibis. You get so spoiled bird watching in Florida! Next time you're in Naples, head inland a little and take in the Corkscrew Swamp Sanctuary. It's quite possibly the last pristine cypress swamp in the state, completely different from the beach, but just as amazing in its way.

Ellen said...

Wonderful pictures! Thank you for sharing your trip to Florida!

Love your stitching and finishing, beautiful as usual!

Hope you have an enjoyable trip to New York!

Hugs,

marly said...

Lovely photos of warmth! Have a safe trip to and from, and a memorable visit with your mom.

Meari said...

Wow, so much eye candy. I love the bird photos. You're right, the ornament you stitched looks just like them. :)

You received a boat load of nice gifts. They are so beautiful.

Barb said...

Carol, I really did enjoy all your Florida pictures. My sister lives near West Palm Beach. They keep inviting us down in the winter. Your photos make me think next year will be the year. Have a great visit with your Mom!

Annie said...

Glad you had a nice visit in Naples. Nice way to forget the winter we just had. Sorry to hear you are having eye trouble. Hope it's nothing serious.

Beautiful job on Kirsten's ornament. Love the finish. Th Snow Birds really pop on that grey fabric. Great choice!

Just a boatload of lovely gifts. What fun it must be to open your mailbox each day!

The cookies look yummy and that plate is so cute!

Annie said...

Glad you had a nice visit in Naples. Nice way to forget the winter we just had. Sorry to hear you are having eye trouble. Hope it's nothing serious.

Beautiful job on Kirsten's ornament. Love the finish. Th Snow Birds really pop on that grey fabric. Great choice!

Just a boatload of lovely gifts. What fun it must be to open your mailbox each day!

The cookies look yummy and that plate is so cute!

Linda said...

Awesome post Carol. Love all of your stitching and finishing. You received some lovely gifts.

Linda

Judy said...

Hi Carol, I know you cannot get back to me, but I wanted to let you know I am still here enjoying your posts. Your stitching and finishes are always so perfect. The Florida trip sounds wondeful. And quite nice photos. I am heading to the Naples area on May 1st. So I am excited about that. All of your gifts are quite nice. Have a great time in NY with your Mom.

Judy Heartland stitcher

Lillie said...

I am always amazed with your creative finishing Carol. Lovely stitching and fabulous gift in the mail.

Thanks for sharing the photos from your walks. I know what you mean with the coconut falling, we had plenty here, LOL. Love the beach photo best especially the dolphin. I've yet to see one, that's in the sea not in captivity. And the birds they are so cute..did you line them up? LOL
Can I have both the cookies and the bunny please? "wink, wink" LOL

Have a good rest of the week Carol.

Jackie said...

Have a safe trip to NY to visit your mom! I'm glad you enjoyed your time here in Florida. It's already far too hot here for me. The AC is running like crazy. It's our summer season I wish was shorter.

I hope the issue with your eyes isn't serious.

Delightful gifts an finishes!

Shelly said...

Great post, Carol! The finishes are wonderful, the gifts are great, and the trip to Florida, ohhh, I could do with a beach! Enjoy your trip to see your mother. Hope the eye thing is very minor!

Belinda said...

Your trip to Florida sounds lovely Carol. It's nice having somewhere beautiful to go and people to visit. Gorgeous photos! I love the bird looking up at you taking his photo.
I hope you enjoy seeing your mum again. I am sure you are very much looking forward to it. Sorry to hear you have had eye problems.
You are lucky to receive such beautiful easter gifts from your friends. Stitchy friends are wonderful.

Happy stitching x

Lesley said...

A lovely post to start the day:-)
Gorgeous photos and beautiful stitching.
Your gifts are so obviously made with love and much thought for you.
I hope you are having a lovely visit with your Mom.Safe journey.

Lois said...

Such an enjoyable post to read with my morning cup of tea Carol! Lovely gifts, lovely stitching and lovely pictures from your trip. The fabric is perfect as backing! Safe journey to visi your mum, I know you are looking forward to spending some time with her.

Gabi said...

Wonderful post! Thanks for sharing pitures of Naples. They bring back so wonderful memories to me, while I was there with my Mom very long ago!
Have a very good time with you Mom.
Hugs, Gabi

Marilyn said...

Glad you had fun on your trip.
Thanks for sharing the pics.
The flowers are gorgeous!
Love the look on that bird's face. lol
Great goodies you received also.
Marilyn

Jane said...

A lovely post Carol and full of everything I love!
'Florida' ~ my favourite word and missing it so much at the moment ~ the warmth, the cleanliness, the people, the beauty ~ your lovely photos will do the job for now!
And ... bunnies :) :) :)
Adorable gifts especially the felted carrots and burlap bunny and what a fabulous bunny plate your cookie are presented on!
Enjoy your trip and hope your eyes improve for you very soon xxx

Vonna, The Twisted Stitcher said...

It is misery to have eye problems, I surely pray that your eyes are on the mend and the issue gone and done!
Your sweet spring stitch for your friend is perfectly stitched and finished as you are so famous for :)
I love Florida, I have never been to Naples, but I adore your pictures. I'm hoping that when we are retired that we may go for a month or two each year as well. We of course adore St. Augustine and go for a week each year with our family, but maybe someday we can go longer :) But that season of our lives is not here yet and I'm savoring what I have now :) Have a great week dear Carol!

Elizabeth said...

Carol i am sorry to hear about your eyes - hope it is only a minor problem and has resolved itself. Your work is beautiful as usual and what lovely gifts you got from your friends. After the winter you had it must have been nice to have been in the sun for awhile. Hope you have a wonderful visit with your mom.

Melody said...

Carol, what a lovely news filled post. It sounds like you had a wonderful trip to Florida. How nice that your inlaws have a place for you to stay. I know what you mean about needing a break from the winter weather. We feel the same. This year we did not get away, but for the years we did, it was such a treat to be away from the cold and yuck for awhile. My husband thinks the same in retirement, that we need some time away from the cold each winter. Your stitching is lovely as always.

Cathy H. said...

I would love to been along on that wonderful Florida trip! You have some gorgeous pictures to remember it by. I love your delicate spring stitching! So sweet!

Deb said...

Lovely gifts! Wonderful stitching!
Love your vacation photos. Oh those Florida flowers are fantastic!

Beth said...

I continued to be floored by how different, and great the La-d-da bunny looks stitched on white. Wonderful Easter gifts, Snow birds is charming, and it looks as though you had a perfectly wonderful vacation! Here is a link for bird id:http://www.whatbird.com/birdexpert/StateColorSize/3/5388/489/birdexpert.aspx

butterfly said...


Love your new header , love the way you placed the ribbon like a chocolate box , a great idea I will have to use thank you for sharing Carol.
You know I love all your stitching always so perfect.
And so are your finishes . Lovely gifts from your friends .
Love all the wonderful photos from your trip .
Hope you have a lovely time with your mother .
Enjoy your Spring big Hugs.

Pam in IL said...

Such lovely stitching and gifts! I'm going to try the cookie recipe too. Enjoy your visit with you mom!

Margaret said...

I hope your eye issues have been cleared up and that you are having a lovely time visiting your mom. Your trip to Florida looks wonderful! Loved that pic of all the birds lined up on the pier poles (or whatever those were). lol! Lovely stitching, of course, fantastic presents from friends too! I always wondered what it was like being a librarian during tax time. I still remember going to the library for the tax forms and stuff. I would hope it's a bit less for you now with online filing?? We usually just file online, no more going to the library. Safe travels!

Cindy's Stitching said...

Such pretty gifts. Gift the you made is just perfect. The pictures from Fla. So pretty. Enjoy time with your Mom.

Krista said...

What a wonderful post, like a breath of spring air! Love all the cute bunnies!! Your vacation pics are gorgeous and love the one with all the birds lined up!! You should enter that one in a contest it would win for sure! Happy Spring!

Ponto Cute said...

Lindas essas fotos e bordados!!!
Beijos e ótimo final de semana.
Tatiana

Sheryl S. said...

What wonderful gifts you have received. Pretty stitching and finishing, I love the snow birds.

Justine said...

So much to admire here! I love the finish you did for Nathalie, the fabric you chose is perfect, and of course all the wonderful gifts you have received. Your friends have really spoiled you!

CraftyGurl said...

Beautiful gifts both given and recieved. Those chcolates would have been the first thing to dissapear Ha!!


Dh and I both LOVE Naples!! I love the weather and the fact that it has still a small town feel. We found another FL town we love and it is only a 5 hour drive from here. St Auguastine! What a great charming place :)


I hope you enjoy your visit with your Mom. Safe travles

angelasweby said...

Carol what a lovely mixed post. I always like to see something Christmassy all the year round and your ornament and Santa are lovely. I do like the snow birds against that beautiful linen.
Your little ornament to your friend is so pretty. It's finished beautifully. Your backing fabrics are always perfect. I love that one from Lois. You have received some really loved gifts. The little bunnies in all shapes and sizes, edible and non edible are just gorgeous. What a lovely time of year to receive as many bunnies as possible. Your ornament from Gaby is so pretty. I have received some stitching from Gaby in the past and know how beautiful her stitching is.
Your photos are just stunning. I love the flowers. The hibiscus remind me so much of our years living in Cyprus. We had huge hibiscus bushes in our garden and a hedge of either side of our path. Your birds are definitely Sandwich terns, the smallest of the tern family. I love your husband's photo of the birds on their perches. We have a children's game here in England called Musical Chairs. There is always one chair less than the number of children playing. When the music stops the children all dash for chairs and the one left standing is out. i think the little bird in the sea was the last one to go out...haha!

Sally said...

Oh Carol I do so enjoy popping over to your blog and seeing your beautiful stitching and photos. Just love your finishesand the gifts you received.

Your trip to Florida looks wonderful. How fantastic to see a dolphin. Have a great trip to see your Mum..

*-* said...


Always a pleasure to read your blog & see your work & lovely gifts.
I hope you have a wonderful time visiting your Mother & look forward to seeing photos of your time away.
Kay.

Andrea said...

A wonderful post Carol! Not much to show eh ... oh but there is :) Love your March ornament and also the gift ornament. Beautiful Easter/Spring inspired gifts to have received too.Have a lovely visit with your Mom. Hope your eyes are alright and it's nothing too serious. Oh nearly forgot, just love that line of birds on the post, too funny!

Maggee said...

What another great post! Friends online ARE the best! I would love to visit Florida regularly... but don't have anyone there--yet! Augusta and Savannah are nice, as is Charleston. Glad Amanda identified the birds... and glad I checked before I started digging! As always, your stitching is perfection. I love the Snow Birds one too, because they look like Shore Birds to me! I love shore birds! Enjoy New York with your Mom! Hugs!

Kay said...

Beautiful finishes! Many wonderful surprises as well that came in the mail! Wonderful photos from your vacation to Florida, looks beautiful all the flowers and scenery!

Angela P said...

Love all your finishes Carol! Lovely gifts from your friends and loved your pics from Florida, especially the Dolphin!

Andréia Regina Sarmento said...

Hello,

I love your posts and fotos! I have changed the name of my blog, now it is:

ceubordado.blogspot.com.br

Visit my site!

Bye, Andréia from Brazil

passionfruitprincess said...

Lovely Florida pictures, Carol! The sitting birds picture is very cool!
I love your finishes and all the gifts you got! Lucky you, got a French magazine, they are beautiful. And your chocolate chip cookies look great on the blue bunny plate. Beautiful picture. Have a great time with your Mom!
Ana Paula.

Annette said...

I always love it when you have vist Naples, then you show us such beautifull pictures!!
That Dolphin, how cool!!!

You have been stitching up beautifull pieces, also got such beautifull gifts again!!
'
I love peanut butter, but never have such it in baking.. really need to do that, but I can;t eat chocolat, and mostly it's always with chocolat..
I'm still looking, I will bake some thing some day

Hilda said...

Hi my dear friend,
I hope you enjoy your trip to New York and your visit with your mom.
It is always so wonderful to read your posts.
I love your little finish of Kissys Freebie - the colors you have chosen are so gentle and smooth.
And you have been gifted with so darling things. But you really diserve all these beauties.

I am happy to read that you had some warm and bright days in Florida to forget this long long Winter for a short time. These last weeks I often thought that I should better look for a warmer and sunnier place when I retire, than where I live now. And we have not been had such a bad Winter than you had!

Hope your mother is well and I am so much looking forward to reading from you again!

Hugs
Hilda

Mylene said...

Such a lovely post, beautiful finishes as well as gifts both sent and received. Great pictures of your get-away and hope you are having a wonderful with your Mom.

Melanie said...

Tax refund and 'self employed' aren't two phrases you usually see together. Just saying. At least, certainly not when it comes to state taxes. OUCH. Heh.

Sorry to hear about your eye issues. Hope they can fix you up soon. :(

Love the new pieces. The snowbirds are going to look fabulous whipped up into an ornament, I'm sure. Can't wait to see what you do with it!

You got some really great photos on your vacation. Knowing me I would have dropped my camera in the water going for the dolphin. Have a nice trip to New York now. :)

Michelle said...

Lovely post sweet friend - love Snow Birds xx

Marie P said...

Thank you for bringing some sunshine, through your FL pics, into my world. It was snowing here a bit earlier, ugh!
Hope your visit to your Mom in NY was enjoyable.

You certainly got a ton of wonderful gifts from some sweet stitching friends.

As always your work is gorgeous!

StitchinByTheLake said...

Snow bird is adorable and, of course, who doesn't love Santa? It was good to see your Florida pictures since I'm sitting at a mission in south Louisiana with the rain pouring down outside my window! blessings, marlene

Annette-California said...

What a incredible post today Carol! I loved all your beautiful photos and all those precious gifts. I hope you have a lovely visit with your mom. And that cookie recipe - OH MY!!! I am a cookie monster LOL!!!
Safe traveling - love Annette

Kaisievic said...

Wonderful post, Carol. I love all of the photos and such wonderful gifts. Thank you for the link to the freebie and the bikkie recipe. It is so lovely to catch up with all of your news. Have a good trip to New York and a big hug for your mum.

♥ Nia said...

Ohhhh how I míssed reading these wonderful posts!!! Long as usual ;) heheheh full of beauties to watch and great stories to read :D it's always a joy!
I'm catching up on my blog reading, from A-Z (going on S so I'm almost there ;) heheheh ) I knew S would be waiting for me with the mosts wonderful posts to read :))))
I've been reading blogs for.. Maybe 2 months :p looks like your blog will be my week reading, solo! ;) heheheheh

Another round of christmas ornaments :D
How do you pick each pattern to stitch? Do you decide 12 at the beginning of the year or you just pick one each month? One thing I know, you always end up with another gorgeous collection :D

Hahahahah that bird is hilarious!!!! That look! Hahahah too good ;) lol!!!
And that other photo, with all birds in a row, fabulous! :)
Hugs to you!!!!

Nancy M said...

What a great post. It's a joy to see what you've stitched and then to see what others have gifted you. How wonderful. You are so talented at photography too! Those were some great shots taken in Florida. I love the last bird photo. Sorry I can't help tell you what they are. I'm hoping you had a wonderful trip to NY and that your Mom is in good health and enjoyed your visit. The weather here has been quite cold too. We are just seeing the spring flowers and the tree barely have buds on them. I am hoping this week will warm and they will burst open for the official greening! Carl bought a tandem bike so we are needing to take it on the inaugural trip. It will probably be quite entertaining to see! Amberlyn has learned to ride without training wheels, so she is always up for a bike ride. Enjoy the spring!

Brenda A said...

Oh looks like a nice break from PA weather! Looks like you had a wonderful time. :)

Mavi. said...

Hi Carol, I'm glad to see you've been enjoying a short holiday and good weather, nice photos, I do not know what they call those birds so nice, but I scare me, I will shun. Very cute embroidery, especially those white birds on gray linen.
A big hug.

Irene said...

che belli, ma il regalo per Nathalie è il più bello di tutti!

Geri said...

I believe the birds are Royal Terns.

sarindustries said...

Online Stitching Machine- Some quilters painstakingly part a quilt top with pride only to send it out to a professional quilter for finishing. Suppose quilting your masterpiece block machine by block for more control over the finished quilt and the satisfaction of completing the entire project yourself. This piece delivers a whole critique of the Stitching Machine.