Friday, May 18, 2012

Needles and Pins

Well, it should actually be "needles and needles"....cross-stitch and knitting that is.  My first cross-stitch finish in a while.  A lovely Threadwork Primitives design called "Pride & Glory".  Check out her stuff on Esty (shop of the same name).  She really has some beautiful Prim stuff there.

The next finish was sort on an emergency job.  I gave a pair of hand-knit socks to my friend's step-son for Christmas.  Last Sunday I got the call that those socks had been worn on nearly a daily basis, only torn from his feet over much protest to be washed and then immediate worn again.  So a second pair was in order.  These are Hobby Lobby brand yarn, Yarn Bee "Walkaway Sock"  Color #3. These went out in the mail yesterday.  I have a pair of Kroy stripes on the needles now since TWO additional pairs were requested.

Under the category "Pins & Needles" :  That is what these ladies are on!  Waiting for the end-of-season picnic to see who's moved up to the next competition level.  I already know who's going, but I wish I could keep them all with me.  Thank you for a fun and very successful season!

Now for some pet snaps.  I got everyone to pose for me this week.
Twinsy, the neighbor cat who is now a permanent resident.

Mel, enjoying a roll on the warm sidewalk.

Coal, who just needs to learn how to turn the key and take this thing for a few laps around the yard.

The elusive Mocha.  After nine years with us she is finally overcoming some of her shyness and venturing out during the day.

Roy, looking rather long and lean in this photo.

Even Bud made it into the photos.  A thunderstorm last week drove both Bud and Joe on to the porch.

Tonight is the last night of regular practice sessions at the gym for two weeks.  Although I love gymnastics, I welcome the break so I can be outside from dawn 'til dusk.  Managed to get the San Marzano tomatoes out into the garden today.  Not sure what the weekend holds for me but it's bound to be busy.  Hope everyone enjoys their weekend plans.

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Do You See What I See?

While wandering aimlessly through my local Walmart in a valiant search for the correct hepa-filter for my vacuum, I became overwhelmed by the numerous sizes, shapes, aromas and prices so I went to check out the craft department.  About 2 years ago all the area WalMarts began "phasing-out" their fabric and craft departments and revamped them into a single isle that sold popsicle sticks and pipe cleaners.  Over the past year the WalMart 15 miles north of me ( yes, that is considered "local" around here) brought back it's fabric by-the-bolt and tonight, yes tonight I saw THEM again for the first time.  By them I mean DMC floss!  I also saw a few off-brand packages of aida and some prefinished aida items.  OK, it's not the return of the local needlework shop that disappeared 8 years ago, but it's a step in the right direction.  At every WalMart in the area (there are 4 within decent driving range) I always make a stop at the customer service desk and mention how much I miss the fabric and craft department, the bolts of fabric and the DMC floss.  Well, someone was listening in Wilmington Ohio!
Craft on my friends......................................

Friday, May 11, 2012

The Vivian Apron

A beautiful Friday and time to tear myself away form Facebook and YouTube and the ongoing flow of information from the European gymnastics scene.  Time for that later after I'm done with my own gymnasts and the sun has set. 
A stitchy finish of sorts for today:  The Vivian Apron by Rebecca Ruth Designs.  My neighbor bought this kit at the Chatfield College Quilt Show two weeks ago as a birthday gift for her daughter.  A nice chance for me to brush-up on my rick-rack attaching skills.  Now I have a pattern that I can use over and over again.

A really cute cookie/baking themed print

Everything is the garden is blooming!  It's just amazing what a mild Winter can do.  I didn't lose a single perennial this year.  I'm even seeing things bloom that I didn't know I had.  When did I plant this color iris?  It probably didn't make it through Winter 2010 and got through Winter 2011 to grace us with it's presence this Spring.  My Baptista and Red Hot Poker have also "resurfaced".

Kitty Roy enjoys the abundant crop of cat nip.  A few more bites and he'll be groovin' with the Party Frogs!

Happy Friday everyone.

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Totally Obsessed!

Please excuse the lack of stitching, knitting, crafting or even blog-updating lately.  I am totally obsessed with the 2012 European Gymnastics Championships taking place in Brussels, Belgium this week.  The fact that I finally have a hi-speed Internet connection has made the obsession even worse.  Hours of downloading not only gorgeous photos (these by the artist Grace Chiu ) but the multitude of VIDEOS out there has consumed hours of my time.  Well, not the numerous hours it took before on dial-up.  I never thought I could be so enamoured of a piece of modern technology.  As a coach and judge this is just priceless for me.  To be able to see these routines moments after they occur.....OK, maybe you have to be a total gymnastics geek to appreciate this.  Anyway, enjoy these lovely photos while I go back to watch some more of the competition.

Thursday, May 3, 2012

In The Bag

Up a the crack of dawn with the kitties and off we go for our usual stroll.  Not so much for exercise, but to direct them to the proper play area and away from the street.  Back behind that green shed is a favorite spot.

The iris are in full bloom and all the other flowers are soon to follow.

 Now on to the bags.  The "Origami Bag" pattern is certainly getting a work-out.  Six more were finished this morning.

All were made from this gorgeous fabric collection called "Letter From Abroad".  All vintage images of stamps, letters, feathers ink wells and fountain pens.

On the project wish list is this felt creation, Strawberry Charlotte.  I don't have a pattern, but from my recent ventures into felt cookies I have most of the techniques down.  Now to get the courage to cut out the pieces...................

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

May Day

The First of May.  I remember this day had quite a bit of significance when I was younger.  When I was an aspiring gymnast May Day equalled Soviet Union and Soviet Union equalled the Mecca of the Gymnastics World!  In my childish mind I built up the myth that if I celebrated this day, I too would become a champion gymnast.  I even wore a little red bandanna around my neck in my idiotic interpretation of the Russian 'Young Pioneer' group.  Of course the teacher made me remove it, as she was far more aware of the actual significance then I was.  Luckily I had three team-mates that did exactly the same thing, so I wasn't a total geek all by myself.  As time progressed (and I became more knowledgeable about world history) May 1st became 'Beach Day'.  Yes,  it was far too cold at the Jersey Shore this time of year.  It was simply the romanticism of cutting school and heading down to Seaside Heights with a group of friends.  It never hurt if there were a few hot boys included in that group.  If I stood close enough to one of them someone might even think he was my actual boyfriend.George L. if your out there you know exactly what I mean.

Now May 1st means a bit of sun after a downpour last night.  The beginnings of my fairy garden held up pretty well.

Not so lucky were the baby tomato plants.  Hopefully a some of sun and they will bounce back.  They are destined to be my major food supply this Summer.

The irises are about ready to burst forth.  So may things are already blooming from the unusually warm weather in March and early April.  I'm getting confused as to what the schedule is for the flower beds.

Back to the world of gymnastics for a moment.  My first attempt to upload a short video clip.  This is Abby performing an insane drill for flyaway dismounts.  To most of you that's "bla,bla, bla, bla bla"  Some of you gym fans my understand the concept behind this.  The younger group just stared in disbelief...............