Tuesday, January 9, 2018

Gifts given, goodies gobbled, and gorgeous Grumpy Cat

It's 2018--hope everyone is having a wonderful start to their new year! I have a few Christmas ornaments that I gave to friends and family to share with you today, but first, I want to tell you how much I enjoyed your comments on your favorite moment of last year. They certainly made me smile and I could truly feel how much they meant to each of you who shared... Blogging can sometimes feel like a one-way street; I share some of my life and stitching with you, but, often, I don't get to see your pretty stitching or hear about your life unless you, too, have a blog. So, I really appreciate your remarks and experiences and if any of you who don't blog would like to email me photos of your finishes--I'd love to see them. I have a couple of people who do that already and I always enjoy seeing what they have created! So, thank you for sharing a bit of yourself--it meant a lot to me!

This pretty blue and white ornament went to dear June, in England. This is a Renato Parolin design called "Inverno" and I just love the simple elegance of it.  I stitched it on 40 ct. white Newcastle with a Victorian Motto Sampler thread called "Sky Blue." The cording is made out of the same lovely thread and the ornament is backed with the perfect shade of blue gray fabric adorned with tiny stars. A gauzy ribbon and silver bell finished it off nicely. I'm happy to say that June loves it, too! (And there are some very nice freebies on Renato's blog if you click here and then click on "Schemi Free" in the tabs).

"Inverno" in blues

This next ornament was stitched twice and sent to my dear friends, Lois, in Northern Ireland, and Cindy, in Tennessee. Most of you will recognize this as Little House Needleworks' "Season's Greetings." I stitched this 'over one' on 28 ct. black Monaco using a variety of DMC threads and overdyeds.  I was so happy with how this one turned out and I may just stitch it again on black for a little gift in the future. The small ecru x's take a while, but they add so much to the overall look, don't you think?

Little House Needleworks "Season's Greetings"

The last one I'll show you today was given to my middle son in honor of the new (very non-grumpy!) cat that he and his girlfriend adopted. You will all recognize this sourpuss of a kitty--he's the cantankerous Grumpy Cat! He is a freebie from Brooke's Books which you can find right here. I changed up the design a bit; I eliminated the red and white border and added additional snowflakes and beads to turn it into a design suitable for turning it into a round ornament. I stitched this on a 32 ct. blue/gray linen with the suggested colors. My son loved it--but not quite as much as he loves his real cat!

Mr. Grumpy Cat himself

So, yes--I (sadly) have no grandchildren, but I now have a "grandcat!" My son and his girlfriend adopted him a year ago from an animal shelter and he has made himself right at home in their apartment. He came with the name "Spike" (because he has a white, furry "spike" going right up the middle of his forehead) and at first, my son wasn't sure if he would keep such a dog-like name. But, it really suits him--he is so much more of a dog than a cat in many ways and he's quite a handful. One of his favorite tricks is unrolling the toilet paper and then rolling it back up (I guess he's hoping no one will notice!). Hmmm... I'm afraid you can't hide that mess, Spike!!

Who, me? I didn't touch the toilet paper :)

I forgot to share my Christmas baking with you in my last post. I didn't bake nearly as much as I would have liked to because there were only four of us here most of the time  (except for Christmas dinner when we had seven). And you know what happens when there are too many goodies around--yes, the weight piles on! So, I baked just a few cookies which you can see below...

Which one would you choose?

On Christmas morning, we traditionally make some lovely frosted cinnamon buns, but our bread machine broke last year and I just didn't have the time to make the dough. I was simply going to run out and buy a coffee cake or some sweet rolls when this recipe caught my attention. It was so quick and easy and practically baked itself...  Oh, yum! Just click here for these tasty "Land Of Nod Cinnamon Buns" (how cute is that for a recipe name?!). We all loved them--in fact some of us loved them more than our old recipe. I would probably add chopped pecans next time, but the combination of cinnamon, raisins, and melted butter was the perfect way to start off our Christmas morning.

The easiest cinnamon buns in the world!

And there you have it--my first post of 2018 all done and dusted! I have a couple more ornaments to share with you, but I've run out of time today. I'm off to the dreaded DMV (Department of Motor Vehicles) to renew my driver's license and you know what that means... Sitting for what seems like hours waiting to have another horrible photo taken that must remain on my driver's license until the year 2022! Oh, my--not one of my favorite experiences...

Wishing you a wonderful week ahead, everyone! Hope it includes lots of time to sit and stitch now that the hustle-bustle of the holidays is over. I do relish these calm winter months so much, don't you? Thank you, as always for your wonderful comments--I do read each and every one even if I am unable to respond to some of you who  haven't included an email address. (Please, please remember to include your email address in your comments if you do have a question for me, okay?). Bye for now...

67 comments:

Vickie said...

Oh your ornaments are all so unique and perfectly finished! I love all three. Spike is quite the character,I can tell! I just love Spritz cookies, so that's the one I would choose. :)

Kate said...

Carol, your gifts are beautiful. You choose such lovely designs and your stitching and finishing is top notch. Grumpy Cat is such a cute design - I keep meaning to stitch him but haven't done so yet - it's time to put him on my 2018 'to do' list. Your grandcat is a cutie. :)

Stasi said...

Carol, Your Inverno in blue is divine--perfect stitching and finishing! I also love the LHN ornament and Grumpy Cat--too cute!
The iced cookies in the middle of your plate appeal to me--they remind me of the Italian cookies a friend of mine's Aunt used to make back in the 60's.
Looking forward to your 2018 projects!

Robin in Virginia said...

Carol, your ornament gifts are fabulous. I love the one by Renato Parolin. Spike is a cutie, but I can see the mischief in his eyes. Hard to pick a favorite from the cookie tray, so I will choose one of each. I hope you are in and out of the DMV in a timely manner. Thinking of you!

Sandy said...

You are the Queen of Ornament Making! I always love seeing your designs and finishes. The round and oval ones are my favorites. Those buns look yummy too.

marly said...

The ornaments you generously gifted are just beautiful! The blue is so elegant. But that cat! No mistaking the model!

They told us it would be in the 40's starting Monday. Still waiting. But at least we'll get two days to clean the slop off the garage floor.

LaNelle said...

Carol, your ornaments are gorgeous! What treasures....lovely blog posting so enjoyed it, Blessings

Vicki said...

What pretty ornaments! And your cookie plate... I couldn't choose just one to try, they all looked delicious.
Happy New Year!

MartinaM said...

Hi Carol,
you're right, the little motif is really beautiful, it does not always have to be colorful. Even with a color embroidered looks great.
Grumpy Cat looks cute, too. Just as cute as Spike.
Oh and your Christmas cookies look delicious. If I lived close to you, I'd like to stop by for a snack.
I wish you a nice week, hugs Martina

Kay said...

Beautiful stitching, I have already been over to look at the free designs. x

Mary - Lecoeurceltique said...

Carol, these finishes are beautiful. I have 'Inverno' and I now want to stitch it like yours. I've already stitched 'Season's Greetings' but I so love it in black that I might have to stitch it again, but this time in black :).

Carla said...

Love your ornaments!!

butterfly said...

For sure, Carol I love my blue ornament , such a peaceful colour just love it.
Talking of grumpy cats DH had to help my daughter today she takes them for injections every January and little Blue is a nightmare where rather large Rupart just sits there ha .
They are all happy that's over .
Lovely yummy bread and cakes , where do you find the time ?
Enjoy your week hugs.

Irene said...

Happy New Year!! Il colore del Parolin è splendido!! E bellissimi tutti i lavori

Katie said...

I just love your beautiful ornaments. So delicate and just finished so perfect. You and Vonna and definitely an inspiration to me. Your yummies look delicious and of course I would try each one haha. I have no will power when it comes to delicious things. I agree with you about these calm winter months. I'm enjoying it very much. Getting lots of stitching time while I can.

Shelly said...

Great finishes, as always! Congrats on becoming a grandma! I have a granddog, his name is Hunter and he's a great dog. Which cookie to choose, hmm. The Chocolate kisses cookies, of course. Second week into January and I'm ready for chocolate again! Have a great day!

Manuela said...

Hello Carol,
a wonderful post.
All the little ornaments are wonderful.
Your cake looks yummy.
Have a nice week.
Hugs, Manuela

Mii Stitch said...

Wishing you a Prosperous New Year Carol! Always lovely to read your posts. Beautiful finish and yummy food as always :) Spike is really cheeky indeed.... of course we wouldn't have noticed he's been playing with the toilet roll :D

Barb said...

Hi Carol - what a wonderful post you have shared with us! Thank you so much. As I always think and want to pass on to you is your stitching is so beautiful and your finishing is stunning! Truly, you make me want to stitch everything I see on your site and I wish (and dream) I could create finishes as beautiful as you do. Truly fabulous!

Spike is an adorable cat - it’s fun to read how “smart” he is! It’s one thing to unroll the toilet paper but quite another to re-roll it. He is obvuIosly a very special kitty. I love the Grumpy Cat ornament you made in his honor - just wonderful!!

I can’t pick a favorite Christmas cookie treat - they all look so delicious. I think I might have to try all of them. (Uh Oh, that could be a problem, huh?

Hope the DMV went smoothly and pretty quickly for you. Most importantly, I want to wish you a wonderful and very happy year ahead. Thanks for sharing so much with us, too. You truly are a very special person to all of us.

Karen said...

Lovey gifts, Carol. Spike seems like a very considerate cat. I've had both dogs and cats unroll the toilet paper, but never roll it back up.

For Christmas cookies, I'm partial to peanut butter blossoms. I've never made them, but love eating them.

Frances N said...

Your stitching is beautiful, as always!
Also, your beautiful cookie tray looks so inviting! ha It really is hard to turn down lovely holiday treats! I guess that's what January resolutions are all about!
Spike is so cute, and trying to be crafty with the tissue!!
Happy New Year to you!

Jo who can't think of a clever nickname said...

More lovely ornaments! And the wonderful Grumpy Cat too. I am very much a cat person and Spike looks like a fun cat to have around.

The cookies look good too!

Daniela Bencúrová said...

Your gifts are beautiful!

° 。 ° ˚* _Π_____*。*˚★ 。* 。*。 • ˚ ˚ •。★
˚ ˛ •˛•*/______/~\。˚ ˚ ˛★ 。* 。*★ 。* 。*
˚ ˛ •˛• | 田田|門| HAPPY NEW YEAR 2018.

diamondc said...

Carol: oh my goodness the ornaments are beautiful, I do have to say Grumpy Cat is my favorite, I need to look up this design.
Your Christmas cookies look yummy.
The bread looks so yummy, I can almost taste them now.
Spike is adorable we had to put a weight on the toilet paper to keep Blondie the Cat from playing with the toilet paper she stays away from it now.

Blessings
Catherine

C Reeder PhxAz said...

Had I been there I could guarantee not a single Hershey kiss cookie would have remained. I love them. Can’t bake them right for some reason but sure can eat them! The blue and white ornament is my favorite. Happy New Year. (Charlene Reeder paracletedesigns@gmail.com)

Belle Marie said...

Hi Carol -- Nice post and some beautiful pictures. Thank you for sharing the cinnamon buns - they look so good and tempting. Can you let us know the pattern for your new header? It is adorable. Thank you. Cindy from northern Illinois

deb said...

Oh I do love that alliterative post title.

Loved seeing the ornaments you stitched as gifts – Season’s Greetings looks amazing on black! And speaking of amazing, Spike is the only cat I’ve ever heard of rolling the toilet paper *back* after he unrolls it – such a useful skill, it would be hard to get angry with him.

The cinnamon buns look completely delicious and your cookies are beautiful! We used to have cinnamon buns for Christmas morning breakfast too (though ours came from Cinnabon’s), but have lately shifted to eggnog bread pudding which is Wonderful Husband’s creation.

Mary Ann DiGiaimo said...

Love your blog...have a few ornaments I made for my grandkids this year...after I get them "off the camera" I'll email them to you.

Mary Ann

Barb said...

Inverno is simply beautiful!! I love your cat story. We used to have a cat named Jinxy next door. He was more like a dog and we loved him. His goal in life was to get into our house. One day we came home and a young man who was staying with us for a short time was on the porch with a bowl of milk trying to coax him out. We got a good laugh out of that. Unfortunately, he had very irresponsible owners and they let him roam all night. One very sad night the coyotes got him. We were so sad!

Meg said...

Hi, Carol!

Wonderful post. Love the ornaments... you have a knack for bringing out the beauty in all the patterns you stitch. I was going through my stash of old cross-stitch magazines yesterday, and as I looked at patterns I’ve ignored over the years, I thought, “How would Carol finish this? Would she stitch just part of this? Would she change the colors?” I found myself seeing things in a new way and flagging patterns to stitch in the future. I don’t know why, but for so long I just thought everything I stitched had to be finished exactly as pictured in the magazines. Silly me!

The cinnamon bread recipe looks great! We’ve been having a hash brown casserole on Christmas morning every year for three years now, and I am ready to try something new. Costco has been selling these easy-to-make, pop-in-the-oven cinnamon rolls....hmmm....

The cat/toilet paper photo is awesome! I’m still laughing.

Have a fantastic January!

Your friend in Idaho,
Meg

Isabelle said...

Hello Carol,thank you for this wonderful post.
All the little you made for Christmas and your friends ornaments are just nice.
Hum !!! I must admit that your cke looks yummy and your kitty so adorable.
Have a lovely day.
Hugs,Isa

Aďka said...

Nádherné mini vankúše, krásne výšivky! A tie koláčiky vyzerajú lákavo...
Pekný deň,
A.

Very beautiful!!!

Justine said...

What a lovely post Carol filled with gorgeous stitching, your lovely grand-cat and delicious cookies! I love how you finished Inverno, it looks so striking on the blue fabric.

maxi said...

Hello Carol,
a great start in 2018 on your blog! I like to stopp on my "blog round" on your blog and look your great ornaments. Your style of ornaments inspire me!
Happy stitching
maxi

Marilyn said...

Your gifted ornaments are all beautiful.
That blue/gray floss is to dye for! Love it!
Hee-Hee, Grumpy Cat is too cute.
I would have to pic the Reese's cookie, for sure. :)
Marilyn

Christine said...

Lovely ornaments, a gorgeous cat, and those cinnamon buns look delicious

Cathy H. said...

More beautiful ornaments. I love "Inverno" in blue! I was thrilled when I managed to find the pattern on line! That ornament is definitely on my list to stitch for next year. I appreciate that you include what fabric and fibers you use. It's so very helpful! As far as the cookies, I'd chose the Christmas trees first, but then I'd probably sample them all!

Cathy H. said...

Me again! I meant to add that I mentioned you on my blog today. You've inspired me to stitch an ornament a month in 2018! Now that I've said that out loud, I'll be more apt to follow through! Thank you for your inspiration!

Patricia Dee said...

Beautiful, beautiful ornaments, Carol. I love Grumpy Cat! Inverno is sooooo pretty.

The cookies and cinnamon buns all look so delicious!! I'll have one (or maybe two) of the green ones, please. They look like shortbread and I love homemade shortbread.

I so look forward to reading your blog when it is updated. Thank you for being part of the bog commumity.

Janice Boucher said...

Carol your finishes are all beautiful... but that Inverno is just exquisite! I can’t do finishing. Wish you would do finishing for others!
As for the cookies, I love them all but I’ll always gravitate to chocolate brownies! I wish you a very Happy Healthy 2018 from cold snowy Massachusetts

Julie said...

I always admire your black fabric stitching, I really should try that myself.
Junes ornament is cute, but grumpy cat got me giggling - Spike really does look a sweetie and not naughty at all!

Beth said...

Wonderful gifts you stitched Carol - all so pretty. The same with the cookies - I certainly could not choose just one kind! Happy 2018!

Maggie said...

Such pretty ornaments, especially love the one you gifted to June.

Had a laugh at Spike unraveling the loo roll, neither of mine have done that but one of them used to go in the bin to get out the cotton buds to play with, i used to find them all over the house!

Preeti said...

Beautiful gifts, Carol ! The stitching and finishing is so neat. Your baked items look delicious:) I am not good at baking, I mostly cook. I have been making the resolution to bake fearlessly since last year but I baked only a few times in 2017.

Cindy's Stitching said...

Each ornament a treasure. You know I truly adore mine. The cat piece is funny. The cat looked caught in the photo. The cookies always look yummy. I hope you are having a great new year.

Mary - Lecoeurceltique said...

I've hunted out my Inverno chart and put it on my to do list for this year. Your colour choice is gorgeous.
Those cinnamon buns look tasty and I imagine if Spike lived with you they would soon be inspected :)

Jackie said...

Happy New Year Carol! Hard to believe it's almost MLK Day! Love, love, love the soft blue ornament. How in the world did you find matching ribbon?

Spike looks completely and totally innocent. I'm quite sure he has been framed!!!

Daffycat said...

Spike? HaHaHa - love it! Your ornaments are perfection and the Christmas goodies look delicious, well done!

Penny said...

Your ornaments are beautiful, Carol! My favorite, of course, is Grumpy Cat. You always make me want to whip out my sewing machine and finish some of the things I've completed. That's a cute little grandcat you've got there! And I agree with Jackie -- he doesn't look like he has any idea how that mess behind him happened. : ) The newest addition to our family likes to find the tissue box or yes, even the toilet paper and shred it. What's funny now is that with all the static electricity in the house he goes around with the shredded pieces clinging to his fur. : ) And I feel your pain on the driver's license photo!

Penny said...

Your ornaments are beautiful, Carol! My favorite, of course, is Grumpy Cat. You always make me want to whip out my sewing machine and finish some of the things I've completed. That's a cute little grandcat you've got there! And I agree with Jackie -- he doesn't look like he has any idea how that mess behind him happened. : ) The newest addition to our family likes to find the tissue box or yes, even the toilet paper and shred it. What's funny now is that with all the static electricity in the house he goes around with the shredded pieces clinging to his fur. : ) And I feel your pain on the driver's license photo!

Lois said...

I just love the ornament you stitched for me, Carol! It is still sitting here on display as I just couldn't pack it away for the next year. Such gorgeous finishing and stitching.
Loved your Grumpy Cat too, the perfect stitch for your son and his girlfriend. Love how Spike is lying there trying to look innocent!!
Those cinnamon buns look delicious and I imagine your baking didn't last long when they were put out to eat.
Happy New Year, my friend!

AnaCristina said...

"inverno" is "winter" in portuguese
:-D

Mary said...

Carol, You decorate your cookies as beautifully as you finish your ornaments!! I would have to try one of each! I love the Season's greetings on black, I'm going to have to try stitching on black soon, they looks so striking. The Inverno is so elegant, I'm sure June loved it! Thanks for the link. Do you use a cording machine to make your cording? Your cording is perfect! Love the grumpy cat stitch you made and Spike is a striking cat!! Looking forward to seeing all your stitching projects in the New Year! Mary

Lili said...

Wonderful gift ornaments, Carol!
Spike is so adorable!

Jennifer said...

Great gifts, and I really love Seasons Greetings, so pretty stitched on the black. Spike is a cute cat, and I hope you’ll get some grandkids before too long 😉. Your cookies look delicious! My mom and my daughter both baked cookies this year, so I was off the hook, but I enjoyed the fruits of their labor!

Lesley said...

Hello Carol,you have more really lovely finishes to show us.I think Grumpy Cat is gorgeous and Inverno is beautiful.
Your son's cat looks like an adorable bundle of mischief and those cookies...well I would have had one of each on my plate straight away never mind good manners!!
I hope you have a lovely birthday next week.

Andrea said...

Beautiful gifts, love 'Inverno', the colour you used is wonderful. Seasons Greeting just pops on the black and looks great finished with the fabric and extra 'x' detailing.
Grumpy Cat 'Spike' is just a bundle of fun. He wants to play .... but has a mischievous streak. :)

Jackie said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Jackie said...

Carol, I have missed reading your blog and have enjoyed reading this post. It is always a pleasure! Your ornaments are always so very beautiful as I can see your heart in the details and that is why they are so well received; and your cookies are no less than perfect as well; and so I will have one or two of those at the top center with the kisses chocolate. They immediately reminded me of a care package that was sent to one my comrades during my short stay in Macedonia. He willingly shared and many of us had thoughts of missing home during that Christmas season. We all had a request in to send more...LOL.
I love the photo of your grandcat. It gave me a chuckle. He has a proud face of "don't touch my work!" I love it. I bet your son does have a handful. :))).
Thanks for posting the links to your charts and the Cinnamon Buns and I will be sure to check into them.
I will be sure to part some time out to come and visit again...Take care and hugs...Jackie:)/

Linda said...

Congrats on the pretty finishes Carol. Spike is just waiting for someone to leave the room. Those cookies and cinnamon buns look yummy.

Linda

Margaret said...

That is so hilarious about Spike and the toilet paper! OMG, so funny! lol! Love all the ornaments you sent off to friends and family. Especially Grumpy Cat. :D Thanks for the cinnamon bun recipe -- I've pinned it so i can find it when "needed." lol! Hope all is well with you and yours. Happy New Year!

priscilla said...

Love your ornaments Carol... Especially the one stitched on black! Always perfectly stitched and finished!
The cookies look fabulous ..and what a cute "grandcat" I have one of those too:)

Mini said...

The ornaments you stitched for your friends are just lovely.The cookies look yummy. Welcome to the world of cat hooman.

Diane Prenatt said...

Beautiful stitching on the Renato Parolin piece! I have his "Village" that I need to get started on. Thanks for the link to his freebies and for the great recipe. This is one I'll try!

Von said...

What a lovely cookie tray, Carol! After a month of indulgence in treats like that, I'm trying to regain control and limiting my carbs to vegetables, lol!
The ornaments you created are so pretty.
At least your grandcat is entertaining until the time you have a grandchild. Sometimes I miss having a cat around the house, especially since I caught a mouse in the kitchen yesterday!

Have a lovely day, Carol!

RJ said...

Happy New Year Carol. I'm alittle late because I've had computer problems and electricity out for two days too. But better late than never and I'm so glad I got to enjoy this post. The ornament gifts you sent out are wonderful. Love the colors and finishes. Your holiday goodies look amazing. May 2018' be perfect for you and yours and lots of stitching. RJ@stitchingfriendsforever

Susan Lankford said...

Hi Carol...your gifts are awesome...anyone would be thrilled to receive one! I saw that you mentioned Victorian Motto threads! I JUST found out about the threads on a couple of Flosstube videos....they are beautiful.
Your Christmas treats look very yummy! And congratulations for getting your blog done...what would everyone do without it? Thank you!

Hugs, Susan