Thursday, October 30, 2014

California Update

Have been in California for a little over a week and it has been so busy.  I am STILL unpacking from the painting last year and am making donations to charity.  I decided I no longer need most of the cook books and cooking magazines I have accumulated.  I never open them anymore and everything seems to be on line.  So, off to the used book store they go.

We also discovered that the RV will not fit in our driveway nor in the driveway that Robert had made up the hill.  It is too steep. (laughing uncontrollably).  Guess being in finance and not engineering is showing itself.  Right now the RV is parked in DIL's driveway up the hill, which is somewhat inconvenient, as I always seem to find something else that is in the RV.

I have also been working to consolidate my stitching stash.  What I brought from Texas and what was here in California.  It is overwhelming.  I have enough kits, enough fabric and enough patterns to last me until I am well over 200 years old at my current stitching rate.  And it took me an entire 8 hours to organize and log all the floss (just the DMC).   Crazy.

I am putting myself on a stitching stuff diet.  Well, sort of.  I am determined not to get any more patterns and/or kits until I get some finishes under my belt.  All this organizing and such has left me little stitching time so I have not made much progress for the past couple of weeks. 

I did start organizing the Books Reading Books HAED project and cannot wait to start it.  I am intimidated by the fabric, so I ordered some 18 count aida in case I cannot get the hang of the fabric that came with the kit.  Daunting!  I also had to order two new scrolls because my max length was 20 inches and I need at least 22.  And I put the first 16 colors on bobbins.   This will probably take me several years to finish.

I also kitted up the Welcome Friends in Celtic that I want to do for my nephew and his wife.  I decided to change the  colors over to DMC and some of them are not even close!  So, I may delay starting this project as I need to get some threads for it.  I will post a photo of it once I start it.

I made some progress on Woodland Enchantress.  This project has been my focus this week.  It is kind of slow going although I am liking how it is coming out.  I am using the System 44 stand (I think that is what it is called) to see how it is going to work for me.  Since I had to put the project side ways on the scroll frame, it is a little awkward to stitch.  The floor standing is helping some, but it is still not so comfortable.  Another reason I ordered the longer scroll bars.  This is the second project I have had to put sideways on the frame. It is about 1/4 done at this point. 


I put the Santa and Mouse HAED project I am doing on my American Dream lap frame that was here in California and it is going OK.  Still slow progress.  It has not dampened my enthusiasm for the large project from HAED that I will start soon.


And Bay Dunes was the project I worked on during the trip.  It is coming along nicely.  I did some of the back stitching while I was listening to Grandgirl nap the other day.  The babysitting is PERFECT as I can stitch without guilt.  Nothing else to do but listen to the little gal sleep!  Loving it.

I have found that my magnifying light that I love is just not working for me here.  It works like a charm in Texas, but the chair I use here in California is wider.  So, I ordered a new light.  Just what I need, right?   It came in yesterday and is still in the box so the jury is out on how well it is going to work.

That is it for now.  I will do another update in November (only 2 days away, yikes) sometime.  Hopefully I will have a finish or two before that.  I wanted to finish Bay Dunes by the end of October, but that isn't going to happen.

Am really enjoying time with the Grand Girls, but I miss the river more than I thought.  It seems there are many more demands on my time here in CA.  The pace if definitely faster and everyone is in a hurry.  We have a lot more going on so perhaps it is my imagination.

More as it happens

Thanks for visiting.

Saturday, October 18, 2014

Day 2 of the Journey to California

Had a really good travel day.  The weather is just about perfect.  Tonight we are in Deming, NM.  I have always loved the desert, and it is just beautiful here. 

We are staying in a new park (new to us anyway).  It is a 55 and over park (for which we are well qualified).  They have some funny rules, and a lot  of goat heads, but it is really nice and they allowed us to park so that we have shade on the passenger side of the coach.  I do not know what the secret is to get shade, but we often have sun on the side where we like to sit out in the evening. 
 And the dogs are pretty comfortable I would say.

Am still working on getting a comfortable place to stitch while we are in route.  I have moved from the front to the living room area and it is a little better. 

Am working on Bay Dunes mostly.  Got some decent progress made.  Still over half way to go, but I am enjoying the colors.  I have to constantly remind myself that I am doing the half crosses the opposite of my usual way. 

I finally gave up on the Santa stocking that has been a WIP for what seems like ages.  All the fractional stitches just drove me nuts.  I have not totally given up on a WIP that I can remember, but I have so much more that I want to do.  I decided at my age not to stress about it.  So I took it off the frame and will start another project I want to do.
Bye santa

On to Arizona tomorrow. 

Friday, October 17, 2014

On the Road Again

Yep, we are headed West at last.  Our first night is outside Fort Stockton.  Not very picturesque, but it IS West Texas after all.  It sure doesn't feel like fall out here.  Hoping the night will cool down.

Have been trying to see if I can cross stitch while we are going down the road.  I usually do a needlepoint project while we are traveling.  I have, on the first day, found that it is not bad if I don't need to do a lot of detail and if it is 14 count.  The 25 count was WAY to small to see while going down the road.  It is certainly a lesson in discipline.  I have so much I want to work on while we are traveling.  I will try some different places in the RV tomorrow and perhaps a different set up in the passenger chair.  I am also thinking I need to put a lap frame in the RV somehow.  I can't seem to get the angle comfortable so far.

The dogs are doing really well.   I think they are ready for a trip.  I am so lucky that they travel well.  I can't imagine if they were bad travelers!

More as it happens. 

Sunday, October 12, 2014

DESIGN Post for October

I am participating in DESIGN which stands for Designer Everybody Should Instantly Get to Notice.  I found this through a facebook post, and it looks like it should be fun.  If nothing else, perhaps I will be more likely to post with a little more regularity than I have in the past.

I do a lot of kits, mostly because I am a little unsure about choosing fabrics and threads.  Since I discovered facebook I have been exposed to many  more options and am challenging myself.  I am also enjoying it quite a bit.  I have learned that there are a plethora of folks out there who design some incredible things for cross stitch.   This posting groups will definitely help me be more aware of the designers of the things that I do.

For this designer focused post I will one of my current WIPs.  It is a kit entitled Bay Dunes and is by StitchWorld.  The artist is Paul Brent. 

He has a website that shows some of his work:

The kit I s dated 1998 and I am not sure where I got it. (knowing me I picked it up at a thrift store!)
 I notice that this piece is not listed on his site, but he does have some needlepoint designs listed.  When I opened this kit I was surprised to find that there is another one of his designs charted.  I like the beach and airy feel of this.  The colors are very soothing and it really has been fun to stitch. 

I have never stitched anything by Paul Brent before and I may do the other design that came with this kit.  Time will tell.   The two design would make a great pairing for a house near the water.  I really like the way it seems to extend beyond the border of the picture.  A little hard to explain, but it enhances the airy feel I think.

This kit has lots and lots of half cross stitches which makes it go pretty fast.  This kit is on 14 ct. white Aida and came with DMC floss.  The finished piece is 9"x13".

I am just about half way finished with it and hope to finish it this month.  I am coming into the more detailed part of the design, so it make take me longer.    Here is my progress so far.

Thanks for visiting. 

Friday, October 3, 2014

October Update

Computer is back home and so far is working (keeping fingers and toes crossed).  So here is an update on my WIPs (works in progress)

I have been trying to set up a rotation on my projects, so my progress the past month has been a little slow.  Seems like I always have something that keeps me busy.  Especially since the weather has cooled off and the weeds have taken over the flower beds!

I am also getting the house ready for us to leave on the 10th and that keeps  me occupied.

 This is my first HAED (Heaven and Earth Designs) project, and I must say it is not going very rapidly.  I am happy with how it is coming along.  I am still winding floss on to bobbins as I go.....47 colors, although so far it is blues and purples.

This is Bay Dunes and it is coming along.  Lots of half stitches.  I decided to do the half stitches the opposite direction than I usually do them.  Making them in the direction of my top thread.  Not sure I like it, but it is a good practice.  I am liking this a lot.

Feasting Frenzy is kind of taking a back seat to the other projects at the moment.  It is my first project on a QSnap.  The jury is still out on whether or not I will use the QSnap again, but I did get an alternative way to put the fabric on the frame from a Utube video which has helped.  This is the project I work on when I am on the patio in the afternoon, so now that it is cooler perhaps I will get a little more done.

And last but not least is Woodland Enchantress.  I am really liking this project a lot even though it is going a little slowly.  It will be interesting to see how long it takes me.
I did not do anything on the Cranes project or the Santa Stocking during September.  I am trying to keep my works in progress down to 6.  Well, the major projects anyway, I still want to do some small things for cards..................................
This month I also purchase two apps for my ipad.  One is a cross stitch application called "X Stitch".  It is really a great way to keep track of projects and future projects.  The good news is that I am almost caught up inputting information.  You list your works in progress, future works, kits, threads and fabric inventories, etc.  The bad news is that I have WAY more projects than I need.  I think it is a sickness! 
The other application I added was Good Reader.  It allows you to download PDF charts onto your computer.  Rather than using paper patterns and marking them, it allows you to have the chart on your ipad and mark it using the highlighter function.  I am not sure I am liking it so far.  It is great for enlarging the pattern/chart and is easy to see that way, but so far I still use my paper and highlighter pens for marking the chart.  Habit I guess.  But it is time I move into the new century I suppose.  I am trying it on the HAED project.
And I also put Hours Tracker application on my ipad (it was free).  It has a function to record the time I am spending on each project, or job.  I like it a lot as I have always been curious about how long something takes me.  Of course I have to remember to clock in and out, but so far that is not a problem.
 That is it for updates. 
Thanks for visiting.

Thursday, October 2, 2014

Computer Woes

I am wanting to do an update of my projects for October, but my laptop computer is in the shop.  I have not had much luck posting photos from my IPad, but it just updated so perhaps I will try again a little later.

We are scheduled to be on the road on Oct. 10 headed West.  I should be able to post our progress during that trip.

While I am not sure I am looking forward to leaving, I am looking forward to seeing family and friends out West.  And, I must confess, I am looking for the time on the road to get some stitching done!

More as it happens!