And here we are again--the end of another month! How have you been? I'm sure most of you have watched with heavy hearts as, yet again, parts of the world descend into war. My thoughts and prayers go out to all of the brave Ukrainian people--I honestly can't believe this is happening in the 21st century. The young mothers walking for miles while carrying their small children across the borders into the safety of neighboring countries especially break my heart. And then there are the elderly, many of whom lived through WWII only to see madness and evil swoop into their country once again. It is all so senseless... This certainly puts things in perspective, doesn't it? The little things we worry about on a daily basis seem so silly and inconsequential when compared to what the Ukrainian citizens are dealing with...
When I am anxious, my needle and thread offer a great deal of comfort and I have been stitching a lot over the past four days. I've finished my ornaments for February and for March. Both are Prairie Schooler Santas and both have a pear theme.
|My ornaments for February and March--Prairie Schooler Santas, of course!|
For February, I chose the Prairie Schooler Santa from "Santa's 12 Days of Christmas 1-4 (Book No. 125). I am not stitching all 12 so I'm leaving the large numbers off the ones I do stitch; in this case I left the number 1 off the right side underneath the pear tree. I stitched this one on 40 ct. vintage country mocha Newcastle and made a few changes.
|♪♫♪ A Santa with a pear tree! ♪♫♪|
The main change I made was to substitute DMC 221 for the suggested color--in my mind, that is the classic PS red! I also changed the border from a solid backstitched line to an alternating one and changed the shape of the top pear in the middle. My finish was the same as I've done in the past--a simple border of handmade cording and a gingham bow.
|My ornament for February 2022|
And, in keeping with the PS Santa/pear theme, I went ahead and finished my ornament for March as well. This one is from the Prairie Schooler Mini Card Set A which you can see right here. The set offers ten mini-cards for only $8.00. I used 32 ct. black Belfast linen for this finish and again, changed the red in Santa's suit to DMC 221. I also changed the pear color to DMC 832.
|And yet another PS Santa with a tiny pear tree!|
For the finish, I used a square of green gingham in the background and bordered the stitching with green cording topped with a festive checked bow. I also added a couple of sprigs of artificial holly (cut from a garland) and tiny gold bells which pick up the color of the pear. To back this sort of ornament finish, I simply use a square piece of black felt cut to size.
|My ornament finish for March 2022|
It's nice to have my ornament for March done early as I'm working on a couple of larger projects this month. What are they? Well, you'll just have to wait and be surprised!
I had a lovely surprise from another stitcher who reads my blog! Linda, from North Carolina, sent me two Lizzie Kate charts that I can use for giveaways. Wasn't that sweet of her? Thank you so very much, Linda! She knew one of you would want to stitch them and our hope is that after you've stitched one, you'll pass it along to another stitching friend. So, for spring (hooray!), I'm offering this cute LK chart called "Sampling Easter" (and the included rabbit charm) as a giveaway.
|If you would like to win this chart (with the rabbit charm), please leave a comment and follow the guidelines mentioned below...|
How do you enter to win the chart? 1) Specifically mention that you would like to win the chart in your comment; 2) Please be a follower and make sure to leave your email address if I don't already have it and; 3) Answer the "Getting to Know You" question below.
But, before we get to the question of the month, let's talk about the title of my blog post today: "A pair of Prairie Schooler Santas (with pears to pare)!" Oh, my--did you notice all those homophones (words that sound the same, but have different meanings and spellings)? It is said that homophones are one of the hardest ideas to understand for people who are learning English. In the case of my blog post today: pair means two or a set of two, pear is a fruit, and pare means to cut off the outer skin or reduce in size. And yet they all sound exactly the same! OH, MY!!! My hat goes off to you amazing folks who have learned to speak English as a second language.
Getting To Know You... So, my question today is: Can you speak another language? Was it hard to learn? Can you speak even more than two languages? I so admire those of you who leave comments in English and even blog in English when it is not your native language. My daughter-in-law is bilingual and she and my oldest son are raising my grandson to speak both Spanish and English. It's just fascinating to watch him pick up both languages so quickly at his young age. As for my answer... well, yes, I can speak a bit of Spanish and an even tinier bit of French, but am, in no way, fluent in either. I took Spanish for 6 years in school, but then made the big mistake of taking French when I went away to college (or university as many of you call it). Oh, that was a huge mistake... Here I was trying to speak French and all I sounded like was an American trying to speak French with a Spanish accent! So, all these years later, I remember some basic words in both languages, but not much else. How about you?
We made a quick trip to Maryland to see our grandson, Mister B, last week--oh, my, how quickly he has grown and changed in just one month! Word after word after word just comes out of that tiny mouth of his. It's amazing how quickly little ones pick up new words at this age. Since he loves airplanes (and really anything that moves--buses, trains, cars, trucks, etc.) we took him to the National Air and Space Museum Udvar-Hazy Center in Chantilly, Virginia. Planes and helicopters and rockets and satellites galore! Mister B loved them all.
|Airplanes everywhere the eye could see!|
|Mister B spent much of his time trying to scale the gates around the exhibits to get up close and personal with the aircraft!|
|The massive space shuttle Discovery was first launched in 1984 and completed nearly 40 missions.|
|The umbrella-like things hanging from the ceiling are tracking and data relay satellites. They look so delicate, don't they?|
Baking is another thing I do when I get anxious and, luckily, I had a good excuse to bake cupcakes for my middle son's girlfriend, who celebrated a birthday on Saturday. I've made these before, but I know many of you are new readers who might enjoy making this small batch chocolate cupcake recipe. I used this recipe from the "Celebrating Sweets" blog and it made seven cupcakes--so yummy and moist! There is a bit of brewed coffee in the recipe which really brings out the chocolatey taste! For the frosting, I made a batch of the vanilla (from that same blog) and also a half batch of the creamy peanut butter from the "Peas and Crayons" blog which you can find right here. Hope you enjoy them--let me know how they turn out if you do end up making them!
|Which one would you choose? For me, it will always be the peanut butter and chocolate combo!|
Thank you for visiting me today! I appreciate each and every one of you--I hope you know that... Do take care and, hopefully, my next post in mid-March will be under more peaceful conditions around the world. Bye for now...