Wednesday, October 31, 2018

Christmas Stitching on Halloween

Happy last day of October--or Happy Halloween if you prefer! How are my blogging friends today? I can hardly believe we are rounding the corner to the final two months of  2018, can you? October has been one tough month around here--I won't sugarcoat it. I just have to hope and pray that November is kinder...

My stitching retreat, two weeks ago, was such fun: stitching, eating, stitching, snacking, stitching, sleeping, stitching... Unfortunately, I had to leave a day early as my niece's baby shower fell on that last day. But, it was still nice to be there for even the short time I had with four long-time stitching friends. We don't have formal exchanges these days like we used to--if someone wants to bring something, that's fine. No one keeps track! I had some extra time to stitch while my mom was in the hospital so I made four little snowflake ornaments--one for each of my friends. Believe me, by the final one, I think I had the chart memorized. It is actually one I had stitched twice before--once for myself and once for a Christmas exchange--so I'm sure many of you recognize it.

A quartet of snowflake ornaments for four good friends

The pattern is a freebie which can be found right here. I also have a link to it in my sidebar under "Favorite Freebies."  These were stitched on 40 ct. white Newcastle using the variegated DMC 115 thread--love the crisp red and white look at Christmas time! The ruched ribbon edging is easy once you get the hang of it...  Google "ruched ribbon tutorial" and you will find some great instructions and videos to help you out. I simply apply it to the perimeter of the circle with a bit of glue on the tip of a toothpick. 

There's just something about red and white!

The problem of how to package my ornaments was made easy when I stumbled upon these red and white polka dot popcorn holders at the local Dollar Tree. Throw in some crimped paper ribbon shreddings and you've got a quick, easy gift box!

All ready for gift-giving!

My stitching friends brought me some goodies, too, as you can see in the photo below. We hope to get back on track and meet up next fall, too. This type of retreat is something that anyone can set up. Many of you told me they've never been to a stitching retreat. Well--why not set up your own? Contact a few friends, rent a house for a few days and let the stitching begin! I am not one for large groups so this smaller set-up suits me perfectly...

Gifts received from stitching friends at our retreat--thank you all!

I don't enjoy shopping, but I do make an exception to visit HomeGoods now and then. I love HomeGoods--you just never know what little gem you'll stumble upon. I recently picked up this "Measure, Make, Create"  Rae Dunn divided dish to use on my crafting table. I love it; it corrals small buttons, trims, and other accents just perfectly when I am finishing an ornament or small pillow. And at the clearance price of $5.00--who could resist?!

A handy little Rae Dunn dish for my craft table

And, I've been meaning to post this sweet little tool set that my daughter-in-law gave me for Mother's Day in May... How pretty are these floral hammer, scissors, and tape measure? I have them where I can quickly grab them--right on top of my craft table at all times...

Some "girl" tools from my dear daughter-in-law!

The handle of the hammer unscrews and is a screwdriver inside! How neat is that? And that hammer came in very handy yesterday as I finally got a 2013 finish all framed up. I use the method outlined here to prepare my stitched piece for framing. The hammer tapped in all those tiny pins while saving my fingers lots of pain in the process! Who remembers this finish of "Halloween Is In the Air?"  Well, as I mentioned...  it's been five years and that poor neglected piece was just waiting and waiting for me to pay it some attention again. Here is the framed finish--isn't it adorable?

Finally framed after five years

Many of you know that Halloween is a hard day for me... My dad passed away four years ago on Halloween and since then I haven't decorated at all. I've stitched a few pieces, but this is the first year I've done anything in the way of decorating. Just this one simple vignette... It's not much, but I'm getting there! Baby steps, right? 

Just look at that moon!

I really love the old-time vintage look of Halloween in this piece--the expressions on the moon's face and the candy corn "flowers" are priceless! I am not a fan of the bright purples and yellows and fluorescent greens that are so popular in modern day Halloween pieces. I much prefer the duller oranges and golds and more muted tones of Halloween decor from the 1930s and 40s. 

A basket of Halloween

GIVEAWAY WINNER... We have a winner! Yes, there were 15 entries for the Seasonal Kitties charts and the winning name drawn from the hat is:  

                                   PATRICIA DEE!!  

The giveaway winner is:  Patricia Dee!

Patricia, please contact me (email is in my "A Bit About Me" profile in the sidebar) and let me know your mailing address. I will get these out to you this week. Congratulations and thank you to all who entered. If you didn't win this time--watch this space. There will be future giveaways!

The synagogue shooting in my city of Pittsburgh has been simply heartbreaking and so horrific for the families of those killed, for the Jewish community, for western Pennsylvania, for the United States, and for the entire world, really. We, here in Pittsburgh, have always felt a bit sheltered from "bad things." We get few natural disasters like hurricanes or wildfires or tornadoes. Our cost of living is low and we are lucky enough to have excellent educational, healthcare, and technology systems in place. Now we are on an evergrowing list of "those" places--Littleton, Sandy Hook, Virginia Tech, Charleston, Las Vegas, Paris, and way too many others. You always think, "It can't happen here." But, you're wrong--it can happen anywhere, at any time, and your city or town will be forever changed. My thoughts and prayers go out to each and every family touched by this senseless act.

What I've been so proud to see during all of the news coverage of the tragedy are the many comments by outsiders and reporters of what a strong, resilient, and caring group of people make up the Pittsburgh area. We are a hard-working, friendly, "get right-back-on-your-feet" type and this will be evident in the days and years to come. I wasn't born in Pittsburgh, but I've lived here for the past 41 years--2/3 of my life. And I'm so proud to call this city my home... 

As wonderful as Pittsburgh normally is, it's not known for an abundance of sunshine! In fact this list shows that it is the 11th least sunny city in the United States--right after Seattle... And it's particularly hard in the fall and winter months when the weather turns too cold to spend time outside. I've known that I'm prone to seasonal sadness and have finally decided to purchase one of those special lamps to use that mimic the sunlight and help battle depression during the winter months. Have any of you purchased one that you can recommend? I'm thinking about this one as it has excellent reviews and looks to be very portable and small. But, I'd love to have your input!

So, as I said--October... sigh. A tough one! My mom has been in and out of the hospital twice and I have been driving back and forth to New York to be with her. Hopefully, things are resolved for now--thank you all for your kind thoughts and prayers for her health. They meant so much to us! 

The beautiful fall colors that brighten my yard

I also want to thank you for your kind, thoughtful comments and emails. I wish I could reply to each of you directly, but many of you are "no-reply" bloggers--and it seems that more and more of you are ending up in that category, sadly. For those of you who still take the time to read and comment, I so appreciate it! I was just checking my blog statistics and the number of views of each of my 2018 posts is about half of what they were last year. That really makes me sad and makes me wonder if blogging truly is a dying art. But, I'll keep plugging away for a while! Enjoy your November, everyone--may it be a kind month filled with the spirit of Thanksgiving. Bye for now...


Mary @ Neat and Tidy said...

As always, your stitching is just beautiful. I'm in Oil City, and our news is from Pittsburgh so we also saw more coverage than most of the nation. My heart and prayers go out to all those impacted by this violence. I hope your mom is on the mend; it's always so difficult when our parents age. Thank you for blogging in these days when so many have quit. Your work inspires me to stitch more and more all the time.

Manuela said...

Hello Carol,
deine Weihnachtsornamente sehen wunderschön aus. Der Stern ist einfach toll. Danke für den Link mit dem Freebie.
So ein Treffen mit Stick- und Nähfreunden ist immer etwas schönes. Ich freue mich auch jeden Monat aufs Neue mich mit meinen Bekannten zu treffen.
Auch deine Halloween Stickerei ist wunderschön. Niedlich der Mond und die Kürbisse. Der Rahmen passt hervorragend dazu.
Happy Halloween and a Big Hugs Manuela

Maggie said...

Those snowflake ornaments are just beautiful Carol, thanks for the tip on adding the ruched ribbon, I've never tried it but would love to have a go.
Your Halloween display is just right and I love the stitched piece.
I'm afraid that I haven't heard anything about the shooting incident, I don't tend to watch TV to be honest so miss any recent events. It sounds terrible, why people feel the need to behave this way is beyond me!
the colours around your house are amazing and your house looks beautiful (i think I may have said this once or twice, lol) but that porch, I love it :-)
Have a great rest of the week x

Vickie said...

I love your snowflake ornaments you created for your friends Carol. I hope the sunlight lamp helps you Carol. Interesting. I have been hiding out from the sun for almost 4 years now! It is a strange lifestyle, one I do not prefer, but must have. Your mother and Olivia's father are still in my prayers.

I too have noticed I hardly get the blogging traffic I once had. I push on for now also.

Sandra said...

Those snowflake ornaments are just wonderful, Carol.
You are not the only one who has noticed less visits and comments on your blog. Same here! In fact, many of the dear bloggers I followed a while back have just given up their blogs, sometimes with no explanation. I really loved exchanging with my blog friends and still miss them. So many people are posting on Instagram these days, though it's not for me!

Special thoughts for you on this day which also commemorates the passing of your dad four years ago.

Sandy said...

First and foremost you have been in my thoughts with your mom. I know that is hard and top it all off with thinking of your dad can't make for good times. Your reminder that it can happen anywhere is so true Carol. It was so terribly sad. I would definitely buy one of those lamps if I lived where it wasn't sunny. I simply must have light to feel good. It makes such a difference. I once worked in a school in an interior room with no windows. I hated that year. I had to go outside for planning no matter the temperature.
The stitches are all so cute. The snowflakes are finished perfectly and the Halloween piece is displayed just perfectly. I like the traditional colors as well. Old school here with colors.
As for the blogging things...don't give up yet. WE love you. When I updated to Safari 12 Blogger made me a no reply blogger. I can't even comment on blogs in any way other than with a URL or anonymous. I had to download Firefox in order to comment. I think that may the problem with some. I really like Safari better as a browser, but when I read my blogs I am using Safari which means now when I am traveling and am just using my phone I won't be able to comment. Technology is good when it works and frustrating at times. I still love blogs for the in depth that just can't be seen on Instagram. I guess we will see how it all plays out. Have to keep up!

Arlene G said...

Oh those snowball ornaments are so cute and the packaging is even better, Carol. I love that Halloween stitch as well. So sorry to hear about your mom. I understand as my mom who is 88 is having some issues as well. Hugs to you. Yes, what a tragedy in Pittsburgh. We sure do live in a different world from the one we grew up in! As for blogging, lots are going to You Tube but I just do not have the FACE for a Plus it would make me nervous so I will keep blogging. I hope you do as well because I Love your blog and find it so encouraging and inspirational.

Robin in Virginia said...

The snowflake ornaments are so elegant, Carol. You are so right about crisp white and red, but I think crisp white and blue would look equally as good.

I continue to pray for your Mom and hope she is feeling better. I am glad you are continuing to blog. I know many have moved to FB, YouTube, and/or Instagram, but also know that some are returning to their blogs. Pittsburgh has been in my thoughts and prayers since news of the shooting came out.

Thinking of you today!

Kay said...

Your stitching and finishing always so beautiful. You can never have too many hand stitched Christmas ornaments. Your halloween piece is lovely, I never get around to doing any autumnal stitching as I seem to go straight from summer to Christmas. Sending hugs and prayers for a good November. x

Wanda McColl said...

Dear Carol, I so sorry your mom has been sick. It is so tough when they are sick. I was thinking about your and the anniversary of your dad's passing - hugs. Time does help us to cope but the missing never ends.
I was thinking about you as well with the tragedy at the synagogue. It is so scary and such senseless loss of lives and lives forever changed.

I am so happy that you got to go stitching with your friends and your ornament gifts are beautiful - love the bags!
I love your Halloween piece and it is framed beautifully. I think I just finished the piece that you have started and shared a sneak piece of in your last post. I tend to be a Halloween person so was happy to have a fall piece to display.
Hopefully I am getting back on track and will do more than post a quick comment on IG. I absolutely love your blog and your quiet, beautiful way of being such an inspiration.
Sending long overdue hugs,

Julie said...

So many sadnesses in the world right now. You may have heard that the owner of our city football club and 4 others lost their lives on Saturday after their helicopter crashed as it was leaving the stadium. Our city is in mourning for an amazing man who donated so much money to the local hospital and other charities.
Your Halloween finish is beautiful, the muted colours are lovely.
Sending you a {big hug} to help you today and wishing mum a recovery as good as it can be from her recent stay in hospital.
love and blessings x

Vicki said...

I'm glad you'll keep plugging away, Carol. I'll be right there with you! Love the red and white ornaments. We live in exact opposite conditions - the 11th least sunny place for you and one of the sunniest places in the country for me. We actually celebrate cloudy days and everyone runs outside if we get even a spritz of rain drops! Glad you're mom is doing better. I'll be interested to hear how the lamp works for you. I've heard of them, sounds like a good idea. Happy Halloween!

Stasi said...

The red/white ornaments are so lovely and you are looks fabulous on a crisp white fabric. Your finishes are always inspiring and I hope you continue to share with us.
Wishing your Mom continues to improve and your November isn't so tough.

carolyn said...

I really enjoy blogs. Please keep yours going.

Jutta said...

Dear Carol,
I hope things go well with your mother. I'll keep my fingers crossed.
Your little christmas pendants have become wonderful, thanks for the link.
And your gifts are all great!
Happy Halloween and a good November for you,

Mary said...

Carol, I love your snowflakes, the crispness of the red & white is so striking. And, I love your packaging!! Very clever indeed!
I tried sewing rouching on and found it impossible to do, the gluing is so much easier.
SO glad the Halloween in the Air came out of it's resting place and is on display. What a pretty stitch with pretty colors and i have a thing for crows!
I hope November brings better health to your Mom, I know how worrisome that must be for you.
Congrats to Patricia Dee!

Lili said...

Your ornaments are lovely, Carol!
The Halloween piece is so beautiful, the colours are really pretty and the moon is so funny!

So sorry for your mother, I hope she will get well soon.


butterfly said...

So happy you had a great time with your stitching friends and love the snow flake ornaments and the way you packaged them .

Also your Halloween stitch is lovely.

Sorry your mom has not been to well , and it is that time of year that we all feel a little low and still early days after losing your father , time will heal my friend, but we will never forget our loved ones.

I did see the news on my TV and thought of you .

I Love your blog Carol and so do many others .

I know it takes longer to put on a blog but we get to know each other
and friendship is so important today .

It's a bit like letter writing , we have lost most of this in our busy world , we need to belong , hugs.

Kate said...

Another enjoyable read, Carol, thank you. I appreciate the link to the snowflakes. Blogging is definitely not what it used to be. For me, there are now only a handful of blogs on which I can leave a comment and thanks to Bloglovin I have a few followers from a porn website in Russia who send me lots of porn messages that, thankfully, end up in my spam box. I am no longer publishing new blog posts but continue to read other bloggers.

RJ said...

Hi Carol!
So happy you had a great time at your stitching retreat with good friends. I love the snowflake ornaments you took for your four friends and I know they will cherish them too. I also love the crisp look of red and white and love how rouching adds to the finish.

Your Halloween stitch is beautiful. I know how you feel about the holiday. My Mom passed on Valentine's Day and it is not a day of celebration for me either. It takes time to heal.

Love the gift your DIL gave you for Mom's Day. How sweet, pretty and useful too.

My heart is with Pittsburgh...that everyone can heal. It is wonderful how you have stuck together in this very sad time. RJ@stitchingfriendsforever

Barbara said...

Carol, Your 4 Christmas ornaments are beautiful! Thank you so much for the inspiration! I may be done with my cross stitched Christmas gifts for this year (and then again, maybe not!). But I'm already thinking ahead to Christmas 2019 when I should have more time to plan ahead and be more generous with gifting my cross stitched creations.

Thank you, too, for the link to the free pattern download for the ornaments. I have done that and put it in a safe place!

Your home nestled against the autumn leaves is beautiful, just exactly like I would want if I lived in Pennsylvania. We lived in northern Virginia many years ago -- such a lovely place at any time of the year!

As for your light to help with the lack of sunshine -- by all means invest in what you need for that. We lived in Seattle for not quite 3 years and although I absolutely love the beauty of the Pacific Northwest, the dark days brought me down something terrible! I did not know about special lights back then. I'm sure that would have helped me.

Since then we have lived in more sunny locals, especially Colorado and now northeast Florida, both places with abundant sunshine. I feel so much better.

I hope your mom continues to do well.

Thank you for your delightful blog. Blogging may be less than what it used to be, but I love it and have made many new friends, including YOU! Take care.

Cindy's Stitching said...

Carol this year is a blurr. Maybe it's our age, I feel like I am in speed warp. Glad you got to meet your friends, beautiful smalls you stitched. I had heard so really sad stories in the past couple of days. We live in crazy times. I hope your mom is doing well. Huggs sweet friend.🌻

Pamela said...

Your snowflakes are stunning. Thank you for posting the link for the chart.

Jennifer said...

Wishing you a happy Halloween and a day of good memories of your dad. Love all your pictures as always and way to go finishing a 5-year project! I will have a lot of those in the next few years, as I really ramped up my stitching 3 or 4 years ago! Hope November has some sunnier days for you and your city and for your mom.

Susan Lankford said...

Hi sorry this has, in general, been a sad month for you. I do think that you always remain positive regardless of the circumstances. I hope your mom has stabilized and yes, the Pittsburgh incident was a terrible loss and even worse (if it can be) when you live in the area.

Your snowflakes are perfect the beautiful red! And that Rae Dunn dish is super cute!

Please don't despair over the lesser numbers of readers....people are just busy and distracted. I really look forward to seeing your beautiful stitching and reading about your experiences.

Hugs, Susan

Beth said...

Very proud of Pittsburgh Carol. The community has stood united in love and shaming and naming those who spread this kind of hatred. Be proud. I continue to enjoy your blog posts and hope that you intend to keep on posting. I don't much care for Valentine's Day anymore for the same reasons that Halloween is difficult for you. Baby steps...

Wisconsin Stitcher said...

Hi Carol,
Always fun to read your blog. Your lovely house looks just like I pictured it. You gift ornaments are perfect as usual. I’m sorry you had such. Hard time after you lost your Dad. I lost both my parents awhile ago. My mother when I was 32 of suicide. She lived across the street from me so that was a tragic day that my mind goes back to every now and than and can still bring tears. And my Dad on Christmas Eve a number of years ago.

I don’t get seasonal depression but went through a horrible 10 month depression battle when I was in my early 50’s. It was the hardest struggle I ever faced ad didn’t think I would live through it. But I did and it has never returned. It was strange but during that time I went upstairs and laid on my bed just trying to vercome the horrible anxiety that went with the depression. I would go days without sleeping. But that evening no I had the strongest sensation of my Dad coming to me and putting his arms around me and telling me he was sorry I was going through this. I’m sure he really was there.

Happy Halloween.

My heart goes out to the people of the synagogue that suffered the tragedy.

StitchinByTheLake said...

Carol I had lost your blog address and was so happy to find it when Pam from Stitching Between the Lines mentioned you and showed her ornament. Adorable! You always make the cutest things! Blessings, Marlene

MartinaM said...

Hi Carol,
I think the little snowflakes are so great, the finish is great too, and such a nice, small gift idea. Both shell and tools are cute.
  I love pumpkins and I'm not the Halloween fan, but there are always a few motifs that I like, like yours.
I hope your mother is feeling better and I take her into my thoughts.
Your colorful garden looks oll, I like the colors in the fall.
Big Hugs, Martina

maxi said...

Hello Carol,
your snowflake ornaments are my number 1 and the finish is great!
Happy stitching

Marilyn said...

Those snowflakes are so pretty, & what a great packaging idea!
Cute little Halloween display also.
Your home is beautiful!
Love that porch!
Prayers for your Mom & all of Pittsburgh.
Take care.

Tricia B said...

Hi Carol, Beautiful sttiching and finishing! Your little retreat sounds perfect to me, too! I am not a big group person either. Your friends are so lucky to receive your lovely ornaments! I dont love the months of gray either. I’d love to hear if the lamp helps. Re: blog comments and ability to email, long ago I enabled that when i would comment but then I would receive an email every time anyone commented on that blog.(even when the comment wasn’t addressed to me, or in response to me.) That became tiring so now I never enable that feature. Maybe here is another way that I dont know about. It does seem to limit any communication with the blogger. It becomes a one way street. But, regardless, I love seeing your photos and hearing about your life 😍 May November be a better month!

Shelly said...

Carol, if I had to choose amongst all of your finished pieces, this round snowflake ornament would be the winner! Red and white colors are perfect for Christmas! I think I might have to stitch this for an exchange I'm in. Nice job on the framing and I love the face on the moon. Wonderful retreat gifts you received! As for blogs, I'll keep plugging away too. Even if I'm the last blogger left, I'll continue! In fact, I started rereading mine from the beginning and it was nice to see everything I have stitched and some of the less enjoyable home life stuff like deaths and health issues. I have made it to February 2017 so I'm almost done. Happy Thursday!

Meg said...

Hi, Carol!

First, thinking of you and your mom. Hoping all is well.

My son says he wants to live in a city bigger than Boise when he is a young adult, so he Googled the best places for twenty-somethings to live in the US and Pittsburgh was at the top. He has been researching housing costs, wages, cost of living (he is 15!) and he is convinced that Pittsburgh is the city for him. Glad I know someone who already lives there! When I was his age, I wanted to live in San Francisco, but I met my future husband my senior year of high school and I wanted to go where he was instead.

My heart goes out to the families and friends of the victims. You're right - violent, senseless acts can happen anywhere, but it is still a shock when it happens in your town. When I was a freshman in college, a 9-year-old girl was abducted just blocks away from my mom's house, and then later that year, in a motel behind her house, a man shot his wife, her friend and himself. Then later the SAME year, someone put an M-80 in the truck of the kid next door and blew it up. It was a shocking year to say the least, and I was so worried about my mom while I was away. Bear in mind that she lives in a small Idaho town with a population of about 1,000. This stuff is not supposed to happen there.

I love that Halloween design. Do you recall the name of the pattern or the designer? I'm glad you were able to do a little Halloween decorating. I'm sure your dad would not want you to stop enjoying the holiday, but it is hard. I get that.

Your snowflake ornaments are adorable. Love your ruching.

Remember why you started blogging in the first place - for friends like me! *grin* I love your blog and read it faithfully. Blogger has been bugging out lately and not letting people comment, too, so that is a factor. I found that if I clear my browser history, it lets me comment if I reload the page. I need to remember to mention that in my next post.

The seasonal light is a great idea. I don't have a recommendation, but I once worked with a nurse who had seasonal affective disorder and she kept one on her desk. It worked great for her.


Katie said...

Oh Carol I'm so sorry to read the sadness in your post. I wish I could email you hugs to brighten your day. My mother was adopted 5 days before Christmas then 8 years ago her father died on the same day. Christmas was always hard on her but now even more so. She always needs it to be perfect. So I always try so hard to make it perfect and normally we do have an amazing time celebrating together even though there is sadness. Good for your to decorate a small area and of course it's you so it's a beautiful October finish you have. It looks wonderful. I'm glad to hear you enjoyed your retreat gathering. The piece you made for everyone is just adorable to say the least. I bet they enjoyed receiving it. The attack in Pittsburgh was sad indeed. What a horrible even to have happen. This world is sure full of pain and sadness. Lots of love coming with this comment. I hope you have a much brighter November.

LoriU said...

Your snowflake ornaments are adorable! So festive! and I love the halloween display. So for that framed piece you pinned the piece to foamboard instead of lacing? Good thing you had that hammer LOL!

Preeti said...

Hi Carol,Your gifts to your stitching friends are lovely and I like your idea of gift packing:) You got great gifts too from friends and DIL.
That's really sad what happens to innocent people. This pain is manifold in the countries at war where many innocents suffer.

Kaisievic said...

Now, Carol, DO NOT GIVE UP BLOGGING! There, I have shouted it at you! I do so love reading your blog. Congrats to Patricia Dee, I am sure that she will have a lot of fun stitching those sweet kitty cats. Lovely stitching as always and prayers to you and your mum and to the victims and families of the terrible shooting in Pittsburgh recently. Lots of stitchy hugs, Kaye

Karen said...

The snowflake ornaments for your friends are lovely and elegant. It looks like all the leaves have turned up your way. They didn't start down here until last week. Please don't give up blogging. I would so missing seeing all your wonderful stitching and finishing.

Cathy H. said...

Beautiful snowflake ornaments! I know all about repeating the same chart over and over! Each year I stitch indentical ornaments for my five grandsons. By the 5th one, yes, I've almost memorized the chart. I do seem to stitch the last one faster than the first! I have been to many stitching retreats, but they just slowly faded away. I remember just how fun they were!! Probably didn't get all the stitching done I should have, but I always had a wonderful time! Glad to hear your mother is doing better. Praying your November will be an easier month!

Anonymous said...

Would you please share the info on the small brown pin keep in your header. . I am doing several turkey stitchings for my bowl.
I will wAtch for your replay.

Rebecca said...

I have been a dedicated reader of your blog for at least two years, although I do not comment much. Sorry about that. I enjoy your stitching, and beautiful finishing, along with you wonderful family. Please keep blogging I love stitching blogs, I will try and comment more! ;)
I am just West of Harrisburg, I feel for all of you in Pittsburgh, such a sad time. Thoughts and prayers are with you and your mother.
Rebecca C.

Anonymous said...

I enjoy reading your blog and I love seeing your finishes! Your stitching is beautiful! I love that I can read your blog about the craft that I so dearly love as well. It is my stress reliever and my creative outlet!

You are so right about the fact that these types of tragedies can happen anywhere, and my heart goes out to Pittsburg!


Andrea said...

Love the snowflake ornaments. Sounds like you had a lovely time at your retreat.
Sorry to hear about your Mum not being too well.
Your Halloween display is wonderful.
Have a good week.

Penny said...

Your ornaments are just beautiful, Carol, and a lovely presentation, too! Glad you could get away for a few days with some stitching friends - sounds like lots of fun! Love the "girl" tools, so pretty. : ) I will be interested to hear how the lamp works. I've been in a funk since the end of summer - for me, it isn't just the absence of sunlight it's the cold, and it doesn't seem to take much cold to do me. I just want to crawl under some warm covers and hibernate until the sun and warmth return. : ) You and your mom have been in my prayers - I'm hoping she is doing better. I'm always happy to see a blog post from you - even though it takes me a while to comment - hope you never give it up. : ) Sending hugs!

Sheryl said...

Sorry to hear of your worrisome month and hope your mother is getting better. Wonderful snowflake stitching, I love the ruched ribbon edging and pretty bow, ideal gifts in the popcorn holders. Thank you for the link. I like the useful gifts from your daughter in law and the awesome Halloween stitching.

Tammy Cianciulli said...

Your blog is one i look forward to every month! I love your finishing.. just drool here and on instant-graham as hubby likes to call it :) Thank you for blessing us with your finishes and the tidbits of your life .. much love from Deep in the hEart of Texas! Tammy C. (aka Dreams of Dogwoods)

Bethan said...

Beautiful snowflakes - the packaging was perfect. I'm sorry to hear about your bad month. Sending you so many good wishes and thoughts x

Clare-Aimetu said...

I'm late with my blog reading, sorry. I love your Christmas gifts for your friends, so beautiful. I hope your mum is feeling a little better. Your Halloween picture is gorgeous.

Xicila said...

Acabo de leer tu entrada. Normalmente entro para ver tus labores, me encanta los acabados que le das !!!
Lo del retiro para coser, comer y dormir me parece genial :-) es una idea que tengo desde hace tiempo, pero hasta ahora no he conseguido que nadie me siga, todas mis amigas bordadoras están demasiado ocupadas...
Un saludo desde Málaga - España.

I just read your entry. Normally I enter to see your work, I love the finishes you give it!
The retreat to sew, eat and sleep seems great :-) is an idea that I have for some time, but so far I have not got anyone to follow me, all my embroidery friends are too busy ...
Greetings from Malaga - Spain.

Margaret said...

Wow. So even you, who have so many blog readers, have noticed a decrease in the number of readers? But it seems to me that there's also a trend toward starting up (or re-starting) old blogs among some. I guess only time will tell. Anyway, love the little ornaments you took to your friends for the retreat! A nice, small intimate retreat sounds ideal to me -- I'm not one for big gatherings either. Love your Halloween framed piece. I'm glad you are to the point where you are slowly more able to enjoy Halloween again. Continued good thoughts and prayers for your mother. Oh, and I had a hammer long time ago that had a screw driver inside too! Unscrew the hammer, put on the screwdriver! It had multiple different choices for a screwdriver head. :D I love that tool set!

Linda said...

Oh Carol. Please don't quit blogging. We are enjoy reading it so much. Congrats on always on the beautiful finishes. I love the little floral tools.


Irene said...

Carol, l'anno in cui è morto mio padre, per Natale, ho comprato tante nuove bellissime decorazioni e ho reso la casa festosa perchè lui non avrebbe voluto un ricordo triste, ma che la mia vita andasse avanti. So che è difficile, ma Halloween è una ricorrenza per ricordare le persone che amiamo e non sono più con noi, in una casa bellissima e divertente, con tanti ricami, perchè i nostri genitori sanno quanto amiamo il ricamo e quanto ci fa felici. Un abbraccio forte forte! :)

Unknown said...

Dear Carol,
I enjoy your blog and am sad to hear that you're sad about how many are reading. I hope you don't stop. I'm sure it's a creative outlet for you to share what you've been doing and as long as you enjoy it, please continue. Blessings to you and thanks for your commitment to bringing your readers some joy.

Leonore Winterer said...

Your stitching and finishing is lovely, and I'm glad you had fun at the retreat! If any of my stitching friends lived closer buy, we'd organize something like this for sure.

Claire said...

Love your stitching and the picture of your beautiful house, Carol. The colours of the trees are just gorgeous. I bet you enjoy lots of stitching time on your porch in the good weather. Your framed Bonnie Sullivan piece turned out just lovely. I've always liked that one. One of these days I will try to properly frame a piece of stitching. Where do you buy the pins that you use in the foam board? Years ago when I used to frame my pieces at a U Frame It shop we used a staple gun for this part. I know Brenda recommended beading pins but I have never seen them. Hope you have found a good light lamp. Fall days can be beautiful but dark here, too. Good thing that we have the brightness and sparkle of Christmas coming up soon. Take care and my thoughts are with you and your mom.

Pam in IL said...

Your stitching and finishing is always so lovely and inspiring! I don't have as much blog traffic either and I have thought about not blogging too. I share things on my blog that I don't share on any other social media and I have some faithful followers that aren't on social media, so that keeps me going. Admittedly, I don't have as much time to blog and read as much as I once did, but I do still enjoy the blogs and bloggers I follow. Did you decide on a light? I have a friend who says I'm "solar powered" and that I should get a light also. I think I need one that also has a heater since I'm also always cold during the winter, lol. Keeping you and your family in my thoughts and prayers.

Jackie's Stitches said...

Carol I didn't realize you lived in Pittsburg. Such heartbreaking news from your beloved city. And others since then. So senseless. Sending you hugs.

Your packaging of the snowflake ornaments is beautiful and creative! I just never come up with ideas like that!

Mary - Lecoeurceltique said...

Beautiful stitching, Carol. The snowflake ornaments are so pretty.
I hope your mother's health improves or at the least remains steady.

rosey175 said...

Your snowflake ornaments are lovely in the variegated red. Ruching ribbon doesn't top my list of things I'm anxious to try but I really like the look it gives pieces. The popcorn holders are a great touch too hah!

I think I like all Halloween-ish colors. I love the old postcards of yesteryear but also the fun new designs with neon green witches haha. That surprised moon is great!

The synagogue shooting was terrible. And the recent nightclub one. I know we're actually safer now than ever before, but it still doesn't take away the feeling of being surrounded by doom. I get a bit messed up by SAD too but haven't purchased any of the lights. Too bad I couldn't just sit under my plant lights in my little indoor jungle of winterized plants. :) Hope your mom's health improves! This is a rough time of year.

Nancy M said...

Your snowflakes are adorable. And a freebie to boot! I forgot to mention in my last comment that we too went from a very short fall to white and stayed that way for about 3 weeks. This weekend was the first time we got rid of the snow that fell. I see your mom was in and out of the hospital, but still not sure why. If you even shared that. The shootings were a horrible thing. Just seems to be epidemic for sure. I’m still catching up!