Stitching and Life in the Company of Pets

Sunday, January 28, 2007

Frog pond visit - but almost done

Well I thought I was finished with everything but the nunstitching the other night. I had put in the last part of the one cat and then held it up to look it over. However, in looking it over I noticed I'd missed the back stitching on one of the pumpkins. Not much, as it is just the bit to make it look like the top is cut off for the Jack-O-Lantern, really quick. But in looking just a bit closer it appears that I was not consistent in how I did this on the different pumpkins (the directions just say backstitch, they don't say how). On half the pumpkins I did the backstitch taking a stitch over every square. But in going around the topper at one point I stopped and started taking a long stitch if it was over several squares. Not a biggie, but having half the pumpkins done one way and half done the other will drive me nuts. Also, since is a tabletopper decided if the long stitch was left in at some point it could start to sag or get snagged, neither of which would be good. So... I had to frog the backstitching on half the pumpkins and put in new tops. Needless to say that sat for a couple days.

This weekend worked out perfect though. My DSIL came over as my parents were taking my nephews to see the Harlem Globetrotters (which they loved). So Kim came early and we just sat and stitched and stitched some more. In total I got in about 7 hours of stitching yesterday. That was enough time to get the frogging done, the new backstitch put in, and get three sides of the nunstitching done. Now I just need to nunstitch the last side and then fringe in out. I just may get it done by the end of the month. It would be so nice to have a finish, and a fairly large one for a change. Kim was able to get a pretty good amount of the palm tree pattern she is working on done as well.

Also, I finally figured out how to use my digital camera, or at least to a minimal level. I still don't know the details of the focus, and other adjustments. But, for a first test run of it, I don't think I did to bad. The pictures of my topper I have here were on it. Now I just need to figure out a bit more of the details, but it will be nice to have options for pictures other than my scanner and my camera phone. The second picture, which is more close up, is truer to the pretty purple color of the fabric (which I've scanned in for other entries). This has been a fun one to do. I may set it out for a while just to admire when it is done even though it isn't Halloween. :)

Saturday, January 20, 2007

Toppers almost done

Well I'm almost there. I have one motif left to finish (up in the top right) and then the nunstitching and fringing all around the edge. This has been a fun one, evidenced by my still hanging in there and working on it when it is substantially past Halloween. Oh well, I'll just be early for this year's Halloween, LOL.

I'm still using my camera phone to shoot pictures, so it is a bit fuzzy. And while still washed out in color, I'm getting better at playing with lighting to get it to show better. Here is a picture from my scanner so you can see the true colors it is done in. I really like the purple fabric and the colorful border. A lot of the flosses (Caron Watercolors) are varigated, which is nice as that way I don't have to change colors all the time. The one on the outside border is called Tahiti. I wasn't sure I would like it at first, as it seemed kind of bright, but I loved it once I got going. The way the colors change from yellow, to orange, to green, blue, purple, etc... is a lot of fun. I'd like to figure out something else to use it on. I was thinking of maybe doing a small fob or a pinkeep in a geometric design. Other ideas?

I wish I was better with technology stuff, but new stuff really does intimidate me, and I do not enjoy trying to figure it out, talk about frustration. However, I finally got the digital camera out that I was given and have at least figured out how to turn it on and how to hook it up to charge the battery (which it is doing this morning). While that might not seem like much to some, to me that is a major first step. However, still need to 1) load the software on my computer, 2) figure out how to use the camera and, 3) figure out how to transfer the picture from the camera to my computer. Ugh! I'll get there eventually, and then I'll really be able to get some good shots. Although I don't think I'll be able to get as good as Lynn, she always manages to have wonderful pictures.

On a critter note, Sasha is doing much better. It took three follow up visits to the vet to check where the two back teeth had been removed before she was given an ok to have chewies again. I'm still keeping her to the softer type ones (more chewie than real hard) as don't want the ones that are really hard (like the nyla bones) or maybe kind of sharp when chewed (like pig ears) to risk hurting the area yet. I figure I'll give her another week or so. However, just being able to have the longer lasting chews has made both her and Jazmine very happy. Jazmine has another ear infection, so she is on drops twice a day for two weeks. Jaz seems to get ear infections all the time, it seems she has a minimum of 2 or 3 a year. I sure wish I knew what caused them to try and prevent it.

It is sunny out today, but cold. However, just seeing the sun is wonderful, a much needed boost to the mood. I wish it would melt some of the snow and ice, but it is just to cold. I'm very thankful though that even though we have the ice and snow that we didn't lose power like so many areas did. I can't imagine trying to deal with the extreme cold, snow and ice and not having power for heat.

Sunday, January 14, 2007

Fabric and luck

Sometimes it seems that you just stumble over the perfect fabric. Earlier I went to the local quilt shop who was having a sale, but didn't really expect to find anything. However, on the sale table I found two wonderful fabrics.

The piece that I was hoping to find some fabric to use to finish into a flatflod was this one - Beware Of Cat, which was a Lizzie Kate pocketbook kit. I finished this last year, and it has been sitting waiting for the fabric (well also for me to learn to do a flatfold too, but that's another story).

At the quilt shop the first piece I found was this lovely tan one that I think the color goes well with the fabric of my piece, and the pictures certainly follow a Halloween theme.

However, as I looked a little further I found this wonderful purple fabric. It really isn't Halloween (but it could be) however, the the purple fabric and little black cat heads I thought were great.

So...I picked them both up. I haven't been able to decide which I like best (although I think I'm leaning towards the purple). However, figured which ever one I didn't use this time I'd for sure be able to use another time.

I also got another piece of fabric for another project, but that will have to be for another post. So, what is your opinion? The tan or the purple fabric to finish it off?

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Dogs and life

Hmmm it has been a while since I posted. Time just flies when you're having fun, or in this case working and having life/pet issues. Anyway, lets start with a little about life -

On one of the Cross Stitch boards one of the ladies posted a link to a longevity quiz.

I came in at 87, which isn't anywhere near enough for me to get to all my stitching and stash, but then I don't think I could get everything done in three lifetimes there is just so much fun stuff out there, LOL. However, what really surprised me was the impact that some of the choices had on your life expectency. I never would have guessed that some of them would be that important, like flossing your teeth daily. I knew it was good for your teeth, but didn't realize how important it
could be to your overall health. Or, taking vitamen E daily. Based on this, and my yearly nagging from my doctor, there are a couple of things that I think I'll try to focus on a little more this year.

One on the new things for this year is taking a NIA class. NIA is kind of like a mix of yoga, Jazz, and light aerobics. It is low intensity (which is good for my knees) and you can work at your own pace (which is nice if you're out of shape, which is the about 30 lbs I should lose). There is quite a bit of stretching type work, which is great for my neck and shoulders, as that is where I carry my stress. I did this for a while last year, and actually got my cholesteral count down some. So...Tues. and Thurs. NIA here I come, I'm all signed up and I started yesterday.

In addition to work and NIA, the other area of my life lately has been my dogs. Both did fine at the vets a couple weeks ago. However, Sasha's area where one of the two teeth she had to have removed does not seem to want to heal. We went back last week to have her one week follow-up, and she needed to be on the antibiotics for another week as it hadn't healed up completly (the other spot where one came out is fine). Today we went back for the 2 week follow-up (since she had issues last week) and it still isn't healed all the way. It is better, so at least she doesn't need another week of antibiotics (which for a 130 lb dog are pretty expensive when she gets them twice a day, 2 pills a time due to her weight). However, she still can't have any more of the harder chewies she so loves. Since she can't have them till she heals, I am not letting Jazmine have any either, as Sasha wouldn't understand (best case) or would steal it from Jaz and eat it anyway hurting her mouth (worst case). So... we'll watch it for another week and go back next week for a 3 week check-up. At least the vet doesn't charge me for the check up. But between the two having the dental work and biopsies of the lumps and then Sasha needing extra antibiotics it has been an expensive new year so far. Since I had a picture of Sasha before, here's a picture of another of my furbabies, this is Jazmine, she's 10 yrs and about 80 lbs. That's D'artagnon in the background .

On the stitching side I now only have 3 cat/pumpkin motifs left to do on Jack and His Cat, my tabletopper, and then I'll be done except for the nunstitching edging. I'll see if I can get a picture posted of it by this weekend. Also, found some really cute fabric to use to finish a couple of projects, and I'll post a shot of them too.

Monday, January 01, 2007

Happy New Year and Chocolate

Just a quick one to wish everyone Happy New Year.

Also, for those of you that like Chocolate and want a fun freebie checkout the cute Chocolate Covered Cherries pattern here (at the bottom of her web page)

The EggNog Fob freebie at the top of the page I thought was cute too, but the Chocolate Covered Cherries is my favorite. I saw this done on Cindy's blog and it worked up really cute.

When I was at Stitches 'n Things Oct. Stitching Weekend I picked up the Hot Cocoa Sampler (this picture is from Casey's web page). I'm going to do it on 28ct Jobelan in English Rose rather than the Cocoa bean color it calls for. I liked that color better when I saw it being stitched that weekend. The Hot Cocoa one will be for my kitchen.

I'm still eyeing Casey's Carrot Cake design too (the Chocolate Cake one that will be released soon I really like as well), but I need to have some restraint, at least they are calorie free, LOL.