...of cold medicine! It's a snowy morning here in western Pennsylvania--actually our first real snowfall of the winter. So pretty outside, but, oh, how I wish I could just stay home today and stitch. Unfortunately, the real world of work and meetings and such calls and in spite of the fact that I have come down with a head cold that has swept through the entire library, I have to carry on as usual. Which, is why I took cold medicine last night (something I rarely give in to!) and I am feeling quite groggy and "out of it" this morning. Fortunately, I don't have to be at work until after noon today, so I have a few hours to "clear my head!"
So, that is how my new year is starting out... How about yours? I've watched as many of you began the crazy challenges of starting new projects each day and just can't imagine how you keep track of everything. I am such a "one-project-at-a-time" stitcher which is why I also don't post as often as others. Sometimes, I just don't feel that I have much to share with you. Today, though, I am going to share some of the Christmas stitching I gave away to blogging friends... This post will contain the pieces I sent to my friends here in the United States and the lovely things I received from them. And next time, I will show you the pieces that were sent and received internationally. I am still waiting for one of them to arrive!
I stitched this Prairie Schooler ornament called "Christmas Eve Deer" for my friend Robin (no blog), in Virginia. I used 40 ct. Newcastle and DMC threads and changed many of the colors to those that were used in the earlier PS charts including DMC 221 and 520. The deer was changed to a much lighter color: 610--just didn't like him so dark in the recommended 3371. I also left off the border! Lots of changes, but I think the final ornament turned out so sweet!
|Prairie Schooler "Christmas Eve Deer" finish|
To my friend Myra, in North Carolina, went this miniature Barbara Ana design that was featured in the November 2014 issue of "Cross Stitch & Needlework" magazine. It is stitched over one on 28 ct. black Monaco--I just love the tininess of it! And don't you love that chubby snowman just waiting to chuck a snowball at some passerby? The checked fabric that I used to finish it is from a kitchen towel that I picked up at a local craft store. It is a nice weight and lends a cheery air to the finish, don't you think?
|Barbara Ana design from CS&N November 2014 magazine|
My friend, Cindy, in Tennessee, was the recipient of this darling snowman pair that I have stitched at least twice before. They just never fail to make me smile! The Val's Stuff design is from the 2010 Just Cross Stitch ornament issue and is called "Oh, Joy." As usual, I made some color changes and used DMC 221, 520, 844, 301, and B5200. This is also stitched "over one" on some mystery 28 ct. fabric and uses the same fabric from the kitchen towel as I used in the ornament shown above.
|Val's Stuff "Oh, Joy!" finish|
Cindy and I also share January as our birthday month and have exchanged gifts for years. This year, I sent her this cute Trilogy piece called "Happy Bunny Bunny Day" made into a little pillow. I have always loved this design and Cindy was very pleased with her gift.
|The Trilogy "Happy Bunny, Bunny Day" finish|
I was delighted to receive packages from my U.S. friends in return! So many talented stitchers are out there--I am honored to be the recipient of your carefully stitched gifts!
From Robin, came not one, but two(!) darling Prairie Schooler ornaments along with some pretty pompom trims which will come in very handy with my next round of ornament finishing. Thank you so very much, Robin! Your beautifully stitched gifts made me smile :)
|Christmas gifts from Robin|
From Myra, came a box just jam-packed full of wonderful goodies including homemade pillowcases in the beautiful deer/cardinal winter themed fabric that you see below, a tiny cloth bell ornament, a wee zipper pouch that will be most handy when I travel or to clip on to my stitching bag (it is a perfect size for needles), some lotions, a jar of caramel pear butter, and a nice supply of candy canes. Thank you so much, my friend--I just love everything!
|Christmas gifts from Myra|
From Cindy, came this cheerful Lizzie Kate ornament, some snowflake fabric and two charts. I'm sure my youngest son would love it if I stitched that hockey playing PS Santa for him some day! Thank you, Cindy, you were so sweet to remember me after the difficult year you've had. Your gifts are beautiful!
|Christmas gifts from Cindy|
And another unexpected gift flew in from California! I lent Annette a chart a few months ago and to thank me she sent a beautiful needlebook (all done up in my favorite colors of blue and white!), two skeins of silk thread, and a charming hand-made Christmas card. What a wonderful surprise, Annette! You were so sweet to spoil me--your needlebook will come in very handy and is perfect for this time of year with its sparkly fabric. It mimics the sparkly snow that is falling outside as I write this! Thank you again for thinking of me...
|Thank you gifts from Annette|
I have to say, that it feels good to get the house back to "normal" after all of the Christmas festivities. It was hard to take the ornaments off my tree and put them to "bed" for the year. Thank you all so much for your wonderful comments about my Christmas tree in my last post. They meant so much to me! Here are all the little beauties nestled into their acid-free box just waiting to greet me next December...
|Piles of Christmas ornaments just waiting for next year!|
I still have more Christmas ornaments to share with you that were sent and received from my international friends, but that will have to wait until my next post. Right now, I have to run and shower and head off to work. My head is beginning to feel less groggy since I began writing this so at least I can drive safely now that the cold medicine has worn off. I have the rest of the week off after today so I'm sure I'll get well-rested and be back to my normal self the next time I post. But, there will be one big change--I will be a year older. Yep, I turn 61 on Saturday. Sigh... That sounds very old to me!
I do hope this will be a healthier year for my family. When my husband broke his neck last May, it clouded much of our year with worry and uncertainty. I actually think many of the health issues I faced were rooted in my anxiety over his recovery. But, 2016 is a new year and I am so hopeful for better days... I wish you the same! Bye for now...
|A snowy day here in Pennsylvania...|