He who has the Son has life; he who does not have the Son of God does not have life. 1John 5:12

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Swan Lake

Hi friends! I would like to show you a gift I received from our friend Mary. She went to an estate sale and bought a collection of linens. She gifted me with these lovely guest towels since they have pink and she thought of me. She also included the sweet pink notecards. Thank you once again Mary for your generous gifts.
I have been stitching away on Swan Lake and it is finished! Marly you were right! I did not even know I was going to add pink to this pattern! I really did not. I thought this would be the only sampler thus far in my AotH that does not have some version or shade of pink. Truly. Until I got to the swans. Oh dear. Yep. On this linen, the called for DMC 3865 does not show up. So then Ecru? I could not get myself to stitch Ecru swans. I just did NOT want cream swans. No.

Now I know what you are thinking. Pink swans?!? Is Vickie crazy? Quite possibly! I stitched the first leg of each cross stitch in VMSS Baby Pink and White, then followed through with  the second half of the cross stitch in B5200 on top. Keep in mind, I am doing this so the swans show up on my 25ct cream Dublin linen, NOT because I fancy pink swans.πŸ˜‰ This is how it turned out.
What do you think? They are still not very dark. They have the faintest pink to them. Their back wing is half VMSS Baby Pink and White and half  DMC Ecru.
Once again I had to make many, many color changes to this pattern to make it look anything like the pattern cover picture.
Instead of CC Camouflage, I used DMC 3023 and647
Instead of CC Magnolia Blossom, I used VMSS Baby Pink and White and B5200
Instead of GA Parchment, I used Ecru
Instead of GA Tin Bucket, I used DMC 3768
Instead of GA Toasted Barley, I used DMC 644
Instead of WDW Dolphin, I used DMC 169

The DMC alternatives given in the pattern did not match up to the picture. That is why I had to pick my own.

I found the capital letter N in my BBD Honeysuckle Manor pattern book. I just used the satin stitch as directed in the pattern.😊

Yes, Brian and I are married 25 years this year. October 3rd is our Wedding Anniversary.

Okay. Am I the only person who has NOT read Jane Eyre? Maybe. I thought it was time I fixed that. So I listened to it instead.πŸ˜‰ I really liked this book a lot, but wowza, this is a looOooOng book.
Jane Eyre is the story of a small, plain-faced, intelligent, and passionate English orphan. Jane is abused by her aunt and cousin and then attends a harsh charity school. Through it all she remains strong and determinedly refuses to allow a cruel world to crush her independence or her strength of will. A masterful story of a woman's quest for freedom and love. Jane Eyre is partly autobiographical, and Charlotte BrontΓ« filled it with social criticism and sinister Gothic elements. A must read for anyone wishing to celebrate the indomitable strength of will or encourage it in their growing children.
I would like to offer a pattern as a giveaway to all of my follower friends. Once again this is a pattern that was taken from a magazine. It is two pages, and I will be folding these pages to fit into a business size envelope. This giveaway is open to all of my friends anywhere. I will draw a name on Monday the 28th of August. Just leave a comment on this post if you would like to receive this pattern.
I have been very busy with projects not involving cross stitch at all. Well, I did organize all my linen. And all of my patterns.😲I hope to be back soon. Until next time, have a blessed day my friends!

Stitching and praying,
Vickie




Monday, August 7, 2017

Swan Lake

Hi friends! Do you recall the lovely hearts I stitched for Claire, Jacob's girlfriend? I got this piece done and just needed to pop it  into a 5x5 frame. Easy. So I left it sit. And sit. The day before her birthday I set about measuring the linen to center and frame the finished piece. NO. NO WAY. This is NOT happening. The stitching is too big for the 5x5 frame by about 4 stitches in width.

So.... I called a few stores around town. I visited a few stores around town. Nothing. No one has a 6x6 white frame. Tick...tick...tick... goes the clock. Ahhhhhh! I need to get this done. Now! Yep. Time to make it a flat fold. I always rely on Vonna's old tutorial for that. I have it memorized.πŸ˜‰ Good thing I have about 825 different pieces of pink material at home to go hunting through.(No, I am not kidding or exaggerating.)  I found the perfect pale pink almost right away actually. It might be hard to see here.
I did not decorate with any trims at all. I left this sleek and unadorned. I like it this way.
And? Claire does too!😊 That is a good sign.

Here is where I am at on Swan Lake.
One of the greens in the vines is the called for color, otherwise I had to change every other floss color to make them look even a bit closer to the pattern cover. Grrr! Drives me nuts.
That is my project for this week. More Swan Lake stitching.

I do hope you have a beautiful week my friends. Thank you for stopping by and thank you for your words of encouragement.

Stitching and praying,
Vickie


Friday, August 4, 2017

Shirley Poppies

Hi friends! Today is the day to announce the winner for the Nora Corbett pattern Gathering Eggs.
 
JUNE! Your name was drawn.😁 I will get this pattern off to the Post Office for you my friend. Enjoy stitching this young girl!
I finished reading In the Steps of Jane Austen by Anne-Marie Edwards. I found this book at my library when our library had a display of Jane Austen books recently. This was interesting, but not captivating. The few pictures included are in black and white.
This detailed and engaging account of Austen's life and work is arranged as a series of walking tours through the towns and countryside she knew and loved—the settings for her novels. This book introduces the people she met on her journeys and explores the country houses, churches, great estates, and elegant cities she knew, which have changed surprisingly little in the course of two centuries.
Sorry for the lack of cross stitch pictures. My week has been hectic. I have been stitching, but I have not taken pictures. I will share updates next week.

Thank you for stopping by today. I appreciate your friendship. I hope you have a very nice weekend my friends!

Stitching and praying,
Vickie




Monday, July 31, 2017

πŸŽ‚

Hi friends! Today is Madeleine's 19th birthday! We had a party with family for her yesterday. I made a chocolate cake with pink buttercream icing.😘

I have a finish to share with you. I stitched up a gift for our Jacob's girlfriend, Claire's birthday.
This is a freebie pattern from Luli you can find RIGHT HERE I stitched this two over two with DMC 818. I used a nice script I found and added their names. I stitched the names one over one with DMC 3713. This is 32ct lambswool linen. I still have to find a nice frame for this. I have a few days yet.

I have begun stitching up the next AotH pattern, which is Swan Lake. I find this one sooooooo pretty. And it does not even have pink!😲
I finished reading Jane and the Barque of Frailty by Stephanie Barron. I have yet to be disappointed by one book in this series. Stephanie is a very good author. She writes so very well, you believe it is Jane who wrote these books. I could not figure this mystery out. It kept me guessing all the way until the very end.
In her latest spellbinding escapade, Jane Austen arrives in London to watch over the printing of her first novel, and finds herself embroiled in a crime that could end more than her career. For it is up to Jane to tease a murderer out of the ton, lest she—and her country—suffer a dastardly demise.…

On the heels of completing Sense and Sensibility, Jane heads to Sloane Street for a monthlong visit with her brother Henry and his wife, Eliza. Hobnobbing with the Fashionable Great at the height of the Season, Jane is well aware of their secrets and peccadilloes. But even she is surprised when the intimate correspondence between a Russian princess and a prominent Tory minister is published in the papers for all to see. More shocking, the disgraced beauty is soon found with her throat slit on Lord Castlereagh’s very doorstep.

Everyone who’s anyone in high society is certain the spurned princess committed the violence upon herself. But Jane is unconvinced. Nor does she believe the minister guilty of so grisly and public a crime. Jane, however, is willing to let someone else investigate—until a quirk of fate thrusts her and Eliza into the heart of the case…as prime suspects!

Striking a bargain with the authorities, Jane secures seven days to save herself and Eliza from hanging. But as her quest to unmask a killer takes her from the halls of government to the drawing rooms of London’s most celebrated courtesan, only one thing is sure: her failure will not only cut short her life. It could lead to England’s downfall. A compulsively readable, uncommonly elegant novel of historical suspense, Jane and the Barque of Frailty once again proves Jane Austen a sleuth to be reckoned with.
In case you did not know, I am having a Nora Corbett pattern giveaway. You can get in on the giveaway RIGHT HERE

And finally, guess what?! Little Henry who many of you have been rooting for, has made progress with Murphy. Yes, it is true!! Now it is not much progress, but it is progress. I have not discussed Murphy on this blog a whole lot. How shall I describe his personality? He is almost 14 years old now. He is quite set in his ways. He is extremely attached to me. Wherever I am, Murphy is. As in he must come into the bathroom with me.😐 I love Murphy. I do, but not in the way I love Henry or even Mabel. I just cannot help it. He cannot be fully trusted. If I want to trim his nails or brush him out, he must be muzzled. I have never had a dog like that. I know you must expect all things when you rescue a dog. And so here we are. Every day things, he is perfect. Brian says he could care less about the whole world as long as he has mama. Murphy is a grumpy, old man. There you go. That sums it up. He likes love, but not too, too much. So our cuddling and extra loving needs to be with our tiny 6 pound Henry.😚 Now there is a poodle who was born to cuddle. He looooves it! And that was my point! Good grief. I got off track here.

I was making buttercream frosting for Madeleine's birthday cake and looked down and surprise, surprise! Henry did it! He got into Murphy's bed and Murphy finally stayed and allowed Henry to stay.
Not exactly cuddling, but they are together in one bed. Notice Murphy is NOT looking?πŸ˜‰Maybe if he does not look, it is not really happening.

Stitching and praying,
Vickie



Monday, July 24, 2017

Our Hearts Are Healing In Poodletown

Hi friends! I hope all is well in your little world? If all is not, and you should like me to pray for you, I am more than happy to do so. I am doing this for several of you friends.πŸ’• Just let me know by private email.

I have made progress on Forever Be My Always.
I have a giveaway going on for a Nora Corbett pattern.Click HERE to sign up for it. 

Thank you for stopping by today. I am so glad you did.😊

Stitching and praying,
Vickie
Precious, precious Mabel


Friday, July 21, 2017

Nora Corbett Giveaway

Hi friends! I am still stitching away on Forever Be My Always. No update picture today.

In Spring our friend Carol had a giveaway for a chart called Gathering Eggs. It is a chart taken from a magazine by Nora Corbett. I know, because I have the same chart, and I too planned to give it away. I am doing that now.
Our friend Jo was the winner of this chart from Carol. Would you perhaps like to stitch this along with Jo? Or did you enter that giveaway, and would you like another chance now? If you would like this chart, please understand these are two pattern pages taken from an older magazine. I will fold these to fit in a business size envelope to save on postage. This giveaway is open to all of my followers. Please leave me a comment telling me you would like the chart. This giveaway will end on Friday August 4th.

The audio book I just finished listening to was The Mapmaker's Children by Sarah McCoy. I liked this book. I really, really liked the historical fiction half of it. The half about abolitionist Sarah Brown.The modern fiction half, eh, kind of.
When Sarah Brown, daughter of abolitionist John Brown, realizes that her artistic talents may be able to help save the lives of slaves fleeing north, she becomes one of the Underground Railroad’s leading mapmakers, taking her cues from the slave code quilts and hiding her maps within her paintings. She boldly embraces this calling after being told the shocking news that she can’t bear children, but as the country steers toward bloody civil war, Sarah faces difficult sacrifices that could put all she loves in peril.

Eden, a modern woman desperate to conceive a child with her husband, moves to an old house in the suburbs and discovers a porcelain head hidden in the root cellar—the remains of an Underground Railroad doll with an extraordinary past of secret messages, danger and deliverance.

Ingeniously plotted to a riveting end, Sarah and Eden’s woven lives connect the past to the present, forcing each of them to define courage, family, love, and legacy in a new way.




Thank you for your wonderful friendship in my time of sorrow over our Mabel. I appreciate you all.

I hope you have a stitchtastic weekend my friends!

"What dreadful hot weather we have! It keeps one in a continual state of inelegance."—Jane Austen

Stitching and praying,
Vickie
Three and half years ago, when we rescued Henry.



Monday, July 17, 2017

🐩

Hi friends! Here is an updated picture of where I am at on Forever Be My Always by Emma Congdon.
We had a nice birthday celebration for Emerson yesterday. He actually turns 21 on Thursday. Thank you for your birthday wishes for him.😊
The Baker's Daughter, by Sarah McCoy  is a novel I listened to last week. It was good, but I had a hard time getting into Reba, one of the two main characters. 
In this New York Times bestseller, two women in different eras face similar life-altering decisions, the politics of exclusion, the terrible choices we face in wartime, and the redemptive power of love.
In 1945, Elsie Schmidt is a naive teenager, as eager for her first sip of champagne as she is for her first kiss. She and her family have been protected from the worst of the terror and desperation overtaking her country by a high-ranking Nazi who wishes to marry her. So when an escaped Jewish boy arrives on Elsie’s doorstep on Christmas Eve, Elsie understands that opening the door would put all she loves in danger.

Sixty years later, in El Paso, Texas, Reba Adams is trying to file a feel-good Christmas piece for the local magazine, and she sits down with the owner of Elsie's German Bakery for what she expects will be an easy interview. But Reba finds herself returning to the bakery again and again, anxious to find the heart of the story—a story that resonates with her own turbulent past. For Elsie, Reba’s questions are a stinging reminder of that last bleak year of World War II.

As the two women's lives become intertwined, both are forced to confront the uncomfortable truths of the past and seek out the courage to forgive.
I see beautiful sunsets like these a few times a week out my kitchen window while I sit and stitch in the evening. I just love pink in the sky.❤️

Thank you, thank you, thank you for you dear words of comfort and compassion. I am so blessed to have friends such as you! How nice of you to take a moment and leave me a word, after little Mabel's passing. I read each and every one of those comments and they all touched my heart so very much. We are healing and crying less. Sure, we still wish we had our precious girl, but she suffers no more. Henry seems to be over his depression. God bless his little heart. He is trying to become buddies with Murphy. Since Murphy was adopted by us at 12 years old and is now almost 14 years old, he is very used to being a lone dog. We will see if little Henry can make a buddy out of Murph yet!πŸ˜‰

Stitching and praying,
Vickie
puppy Mabel


Friday, July 14, 2017

Happy Birthday

Hi friends. I want to thank you with my whole heart. You have reached out and shown me true friendship. I have been comforted by your sweet messages. Thank you. Thank you for caring. It means a lot. It makes a difference. I feel the love. It brings joy, yes joy to my heart knowing so many of you cared about little Mabel. And my heart needs that. I know so very many of you know just what this feels like, losing a dear, beloved pet. That broken, crumpled heart feeling. Thank you once again for your kindness.

I finished Happy Birthday, pattern #6 in the Anniversaries of the Heart series. This sampler is dedicated to my paternal grandparents. My Grandpa died when I was only 6 months old. My Grandma died right after I turned one year old. Here is their wedding picture. Isn't this fantastic?
The upper third of my Happy Birthday had to be altered. When stitching this entire sampler series one over one on 25ct linen, some alterations are necessary to fit names and dates. So I created a different border to go across the top of the pattern. I am happy with how the names and dates fit. 😊
(One over one on 25ct cream Dublin linen)

I used all DMC on this. I changed the pinks and the purple, in the same way I did on Pink Hill Manor. I also changed the brown of the house to 3864. I changed the grey of the roof to 318.

And the really obvious change?! HA! Out with the birds, in with the poodles! I put in two Mabels in Pink Hill Manor. I put in two Henrys in Happy Birthday. How do you like that?!? Personally, I LOVE it!πŸ’•
 That is my father's sampler you can just see above this one, his parent's sampler.❤️


Okay, tied with my favorite Maisie Dobb books, is this book for best book I read this year. Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet by Jamie Ford is sooooo good! You should read it. There. That is all I need to say.
In the opening pages of Jamie Ford’s stunning debut novel, Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet, Henry Lee comes upon a crowd gathered outside the Panama Hotel, once the gateway to Seattle’s Japantown. It has been boarded up for decades, but now the new owner has made an incredible discovery: the belongings of Japanese families, left when they were rounded up and sent to internment camps during World War II. As Henry looks on, the owner opens a Japanese parasol.

This simple act takes old Henry Lee back to the 1940s, at the height of the war, when young Henry’s world is a jumble of confusion and excitement, and to his father, who is obsessed with the war in China and having Henry grow up American. While “scholarshipping” at the exclusive Rainier Elementary, where the white kids ignore him, Henry meets Keiko Okabe, a young Japanese American student. Amid the chaos of blackouts, curfews, and FBI raids, Henry and Keiko forge a bond of friendship–and innocent love–that transcends the long-standing prejudices of their Old World ancestors. And after Keiko and her family are swept up in the evacuations to the internment camps, she and Henry are left only with the hope that the war will end, and that their promise to each other will be kept.

Forty years later, Henry Lee is certain that the parasol belonged to Keiko. In the hotel’s dark dusty basement he begins looking for signs of the Okabe family’s belongings and for a long-lost object whose value he cannot begin to measure. Now a widower, Henry is still trying to find his voice–words that might explain the actions of his nationalistic father; words that might bridge the gap between him and his modern, Chinese American son; words that might help him confront the choices he made many years ago.

Set during one of the most conflicted and volatile times in American history, Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet is an extraordinary story of commitment and enduring hope. In Henry and Keiko, Jamie Ford has created an unforgettable duo whose story teaches us of the power of forgiveness and the human heart.
 I am now finally back to stitching on the big anniversary gift I am making for Brian, Forever Be My Always by Emma Congdon.
I hope you have a restful weekend my friends. We will be celebrating Emerson's 21st birthday with family on Sunday afternoon.

Stitching and praying,
Vickie




Tuesday, July 11, 2017

Our Mabel

Oh friends. Our Mabel is gone. She died very early this morning with all five of us around her, here at home. She is so very loved.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

 
 
 
 Thank you for your love and support and prayers. God bless you all.

Crying and praying,
Vickie