Sharing my life and love of cross stitch. Thoughts about this and that.

Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Snow Bunnies Freebie

From Crafts 'n Things - also check out the archives! Sorry, link not working. Will try to correct.

Saturday, December 7, 2013

Grumpy Cat Christmas Freebie

from BrookesBooks  Click on Freebies then scroll down just past her Stitcher's Alphabet. I love it! Check out the Alphabet as well as her wonderful other designs while there!

Monday, December 2, 2013

New and Older Christmas Freebies

Stitchers Village - Click on the tree in the square, then on various items in the room for information and the freebies:  moon, tree pillow, Santa pillow, snowman stocking, 2 of the pictures above the fireplace. Apparently more freebies to be added.

Midsummers Night Musings - some older Christmas and other freebies on this blog

Craftfoxes - Cross stitch Christmas cards or ornies - funky 50's colors for 2 charts and a reindeer as a third. Step 1 is the "key."  DMC is the first of each group of 3 numbers listed (with no commas in between). It's very awkward. Not sure which chart the Light Effects are to be stitched on. You'll need to copy/paste. There is no symbol key. VERY awkward. Steps 2-4 are the individual charts. Click on Zoom, where you'll then be able to save the colored chart. Also maybe print it. I didn't try. If  you click on the link just before Step 1 you'll link to the site where you can get a preview of the book they were taken from. To get a better view enlarge the pages using the little doohickey that pops up and in combination with Control + on your keyboard if necessary. If you don't have Light Effects, prefer not to spend $$ to use them once or don't like working with them, substitute.

Just saw a preview of a new Sue Hillis release (next week maybe). No title as yet, but it says "Believe" which is surrounded by numerous little Christmas Stockings. Cute. For the next couple of days you can see a photo in her post on the Message Board. Sue has 4 nice freebies on her site. Look for "Freebies" in the left column but please do take the time to look at her many themes and dozens of wonderful designs. To make them that much better, each will fit into a standard-sized frame!

Friday, November 29, 2013

Antiques Samplers and Alphabets

Correction:  Make that SAMPLINGS.COM. Sorry about the error.

This is a commercial dealer's site which, in addition to other antique items, has a large collection of antique Samplers often stitched by very young girls in the 1700s and 1800s, and provides a detailed description of the work and about the stitchers, if available. The samplers are worked in cross-stitch and other embroidery stitches. Well worth the visit and long browse to view the excellent work and learn more about the history of the art of needlework. Note that many, if not all, of the different element designs as well as the alphabets are the same or very similar to those utilized by sampler and primitive designers today.  Once you click on a sampler, scroll over the photo for a magnified view. The details are below the photos. Very interesting from both a historical and more modern perspective.

Thanksgiving Day

I hope you all had a wonderful time with family and friends, or even if on your own you celebrated in your own personal way - even if it was a TV dinner and TV or shopping OR STITCHING!

I was at my sister's house with my Dad, she and her husband, and her 2 son's families making at total of 13. After some debate, I took mixed vegetables and added a package of frozen corn to them, and fruit salad. Since I only brought home a couple of servings of each, guess that was a good choice. Irritatingly, the beautiful red delicious apples I bought to include had almost no taste and had apparently been way too cold at one point as they were riddled with brown to the point I there was very little of it I could even use. My sister provided a quite scrumptiously tart Pink something apple to make up the difference and some blueberries. The other apples are going back to the store for $1.80 refund! The guys rushed through dinner so they could watch the Cowboys game, leaving my sister and I to do the clean-up. Her DIL might have helped had there been room, but did stay and chat. Dad wanted his pumpkin pie immediately following lunch (so he could eat it while watching the game), but she didn't even set the desert out until AFTER most everything else had been cleared and put away - to make room for the pie to BE set out. Good for her!  At her direction, Dad was first in line. She had made a him a separate no-sugar pumpkin pie, but I don't know why she bothers. He took an equally large slice of sugar-loaded cherry pie and drowned both with ReadyWhip. Her 5 grandsons, ages 12 thru 19 and have absolutely avoided all interaction with us since they were toddlers (a BIG bone of contention with Dad - I doubt any of them even know my name) rushed in immediately, jostling for position behind Dadm for more than their fair share of each pie with requisite heaps of ReadyWhip, and rushed out just as quickly. There turned out to be plenty of pie, but only because the women either didn't eat any or had much smaller pieces. I found the rush and pie-grab by her the non-interacting grandsons particularly irritating. Grandmother and and parents just brush it off as teenage male behavior. I call it totally spoiled, utterly undisciplined, and downright rude.  Because of the cinnamon and gingler, I couldn't eat any of the pies but did nibble what little cookie I could from around the embedded M&M's and added a dollop of ReadyWhip to a cup of coffee. My sister put together a couple of servings of turkey and dressing with some gravy for each of Dad and I. VERY APPRECIATED!! We left at half-time in order to be home before dark. It was still in the 3rd quarter when I dropped him off, and though by then definitely dark, the very last pink of  sunset was still on the low horizon as I turned in my drive.

Henna, who finally wandered out to see who had dared to enter her domain, was displeased I hadn't been home to feed her on demand and to use my lap as her favorite napping spot. She even turned her nose up at the bit of turkey I offered by way apology.

For anyone who read the originally posted version: the noisy motor on my fridge seems to have resolved itself. WHEW!!

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

DMC Thanksgiving Freebie

Give Thanks Sampler  Also check out their other freebies.

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Missed the North Texas GTG

And really bummed about it. It'd been on my calendar since late summer but a last minute specific request to assist in an JEOC activity meant that I wouldn't even arrive until mid-afternoon on Saturday, along with the fact that driving 15 miles WEST to Fort Worth meant it'd that much further and take a LOT longer to drive back EAST to North Dallas. By 1pm I'd given totally up on the idea and ended up staying until 6. As it turned out I did very little and probably could have just got up and left an hour after I arrived.  Wish I had! : (  The organizers, Lynn and Jenetta, reported 32 attended. They distributed stuffed goodie bags with floss and designer-contributed charts (including Sue Hillis) and other small treats as well.  Stitchers brought stitched designs to show off, others to work on, snacks to eat and charts and other items to sell or give away. Some visited a couple of local cross-stitch shops, and all went out and about to shop, eat and/or maybe get a quick glimpse of that part of Dallas. They'd even arranged for those flying in to be picked-up at DFW or Love Field. From the pics it looks like everyone had a really wonderful time and a heck of a lot of fun. There's already talk about another GTG next year!!

Monday, October 28, 2013

Itty Bitty Back Stitch Alphabets/Numbers Freebies

Although I haven't been able to edit my old Webring site for years, I find that the contents are still accessible. Here are some 2 and 3 backstitch high alphabets/numbers I created a long time ago - very useful for adding name and date to small cross stitch / needlework projects.  These are .jpgs so do a copy/paste.

The LMc Designs Webring Site can be found at If Webring rolls you over to their Home Page, reload and hit Stop or X on your browser Tool Bar, which kept them from doing that to me a few minutes ago. Come to think of it, actually the pages were originally created and posted to Yahoo's old, free up to a point, webpage site using it's affiliated online webpage editor. It was shut down years ago. Have to admit I've forgotten the name but many of you may have also have created a website using that program.  I also had a WebRing page where I linked in the Yahoo webpages.  I'm really surprised they are still accessible!

Saturday, October 26, 2013

Walk to End Alzheimers

Had to be in Fort Worth at 6:00 am this morning to help with radio communications for the Walk to End Alzheimers. It was bad enough having to set the alarm for 4:45. It was worse when I realized I'd already been up 30 minutes and it was really only 4:15. Really nice cloudy and cool weather for the participants, staff and volunteers. The Walk started at 9:00 a.m. The last walker had finished, the course had been cleared of supplies and signs, all the participants and almost all volunteers had already left, and we shut down the radios at 10:40.  I was at the super Walmart by 11, wandering up and down aisles telling myself I really did NOT actually need this or that while looking for a new can opener, managing to spend an hour in the process. But I did myself proud. I came home with only the new can opener and a ream of 24lb paper. :D

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Nov 22, 1963 - Has It Really Been 50 Years?

Because someone asked on the 123MB and since I took the time to put my memories together, I thought I'd go ahead and post this. Some are still very precise and distinct (I think anyway), some are a bit muddled due to the impact of the Kennedy Assignation, but probably no more so than they when this happened.

Memory of a local teenager:

I was a sophomore in high school in Arlington, Texas - Fort Worth 10 minutes to the west, Dallas 15 minutes to the east. It was Home Coming Friday with our short but enthusiastic Parade with floats made out of chicken wire, tissues and crepe paper to start at 4:00 or  maybe 4:30, the game and a dance scheduled later that evening. We were waiting in the choir room for our after-lunch choir class to begin. There was a Pep Rally scheduled for sometime that day but I frankly have no memory of when it was or was supposed to be. Some of our classmates skipped school and had been in Fort Worth earlier to see Kennedy live and had just returned or hadn't arrived back yet. Some played hookey to go to Dallas to watch the Presidential parade. At 12:35 the bells rang but our always waiting teacher still hadn't appeared. Some students were missing as well. After a few minutes it was obvious something was definitely wrong but no one knew what. This was the era of the cold war and only 13 months after the Cuban Missile crisis. Speculative murmurs of possible nuclear war could be heard and we were getting really nervous. No portable transistor radios were allowed in class. No cell phones, no nothings back in 1963. I think last period had already been cut for early Parade dismissal.  It was already 10 or 15 minutes into the class period (it seemed a lot longer) and some people were talking about just leaving when finally a classmate who had been in the office ran in crying and told us Kennedy had been shot. Utter shock and disbelief. A moment later Miss Ellis came in, about the same time as the principal Mr. Webb came on the intercom to announce what had happened. The lights were never turned on. I remember on a clear bright Autumn day how dark the classrooms, the entire school felt. Hardly anyone said a word. There were a lot of silent tears or quiet sobbing. The principal left the radio and intercom on so we could hear what was happening. Role was quickly taken then the bell rang early for next period.

Everything was cancelled. School was dismissed even earlier than originally scheduled but students couldn't leave unless a parent arrived or they had a car. Bus students had to wait until the buses could get there. I don't remember the next teacher even coming to the class room, or maybe she just took role. We either left the classroom or she let us go before the dismissal bell even rang. Some parents were already waiting. We rushed home to watch our local reporters (Dan Rather for one) become instantaneous national correspondents. We were home to watch the confusion and speculation, both live and immediately aired unedited 8mm or 16mm rushes, the first interviews with witnesses in Dealey Plaza or on the Grassy Knoll, and then to hear Walter Cronkite and the others formally announce Kennedy was dead. At some point we learned Officer Tibbets had been killed and it might be related to the assassination, then that someone had been captured in a Theater not far from downtown Dallas. About the time the Homecoming Queen would have been crowned, President Johnson was taking his Oath of Office on Air Force One.  We watched into the night to see the plane land in DC,  Jacqueline come down the steps in her blood-spattered suit, the casket being removed and placed in the hearse.

We were driving home from church on Sunday listening to a live radio broadcast from the basement of the Dallas Jail and heard Oswell get shot. School was dismissed the day of the Funeral. Whose heart didn't break when John John saluted the caisson?  I think most everyone in the nation and perhaps the world, watched it on TV.

I don't recall whether our high school ever had another Homecoming Parade or not.

Fast forward 8 years. My Ex and I were living in a rent house a block from Rose Hill Cemetery (where Lee Harvey Oswald is buried) and both worked in the Dallas County Records Building which is catty-cornered across the intersection from the Texas School Book Depository. Every day I walked in front of it past tens of gawking but usually quiet tourists in Dealy Plaza to get to my car parked just behind the Grassy Knoll. I drove under the Triple Underpass twice each day, on the way home directly over the X on the street which still marks the spot Kennedy and Gov. Connolly were shot. It always seemed surreal, and I still think about it every time I go to downtown Dallas and pass by and over those same locations these 50 years later. It's all still there. Except for the Texas School Book Depository, since spruced up and now home to The Sixth Floor Museum, it all still looks the same. I think somewhere I still have the yellowed copy of the Extra Edition of the FW Star Telegram.

Saturday, October 19, 2013

Updated my EMVolunteer Blog

Way past due as I haven't posted there since May. You might find it interesting.

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

In a Stitching & Blogging Funk

But I've read 13 novels in the past 2 months, all but 1 a cozy mystery. I go in spurts: either stitch or read. I logged in this morning to update my Reading List but instead inadvertently managed to delete the entire contents going back to 2009 or 2010. I'm naturally upset. I MAY try to reconstruct a partial list based on the "Reading History"  from my Library Account, but that only goes back to November 2011.   Few people even visited that Page, The only comments I've received, those from author Lea Wait, did not disappear. That, at least, is a relief!

I THINK about stitching and I've gone through some of the gallon plastic bags I keep WIP's in, but that's pretty much as far as it's gotten in the past 6 or 8 weeks. I haven't touched the Welcome Friends grapevine project since June or July, even though it's probably 80% complete. The only recent finish was the small PS halloween freebie - in July. I need to turn that into something to send to my DD before Halloween. I've still a few stitches left on the 3rd Patriotic Santa, also not touched in maybe 6 months. In early September I did briefly pick up my Lizzie Kate ABC's of Aging that I started in May or June of LAST year and has been sitting for almost a year.  Does just one wrong color just completely stop you in your tracks? I thought I'd FINALLY found a workable substitute. Did maybe 10 or 20 stitches recently- BUT NO, that won't work either. I could probably finish the stitching in less than a week, but I'm stuck! And then there are multiple-year's worth of WIP's still waiting for renewed attention.

There is a North Texas GTG scheduled for November 1 & 2nd in north Dallas.  Many out of area stitchers are coming and rooms are or were available at very reasonable rates. But since it's less than a hour's drive, I'll probably just drive over for one of those days - most likely Saturday. Looks like it will be fun, and it'll be good to get to put some faces with stitchers from the 123MB. The cost is $20 to offset meeting room rental fees. If anyone is interested, let me know IMMEDIATELY and I'll direct you to the organizers. Lots of goodies and some designer freebies to be passed around.

Found out last week that Henna, my 17-year-old ginger cat, probably has Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy - an incurable heart problem that involves thickening of the heart muscle thus a "gallop" rhythm and restricted blood flow and all that eventually portends. In fact, the vet now tells me she had the same "gallop" issues last year but I understood the rapid rate to be related to anxiety about the visit to the vet - who certainly didn't make a big deal over it at the time. The other possibility is pericardial effusion, excess fluid in the sac around the heart. For treatment either has to be formally diagnosed, which requires an echocardiogram thus a veterinary cardiologist, which I'm sure is very expensive.  She also has peridontal disease, but at her age the risk of anesthesia is too high. Otherwise she is in remarkably good health for a cat of any age. For now the doctor suggested a baby-aspirin therapy to help with blood flow, and antibiotics for her dental issues. Something I can do.

Like Dixieland jazz? Here's something UPBEAT. My brother's Dixieland Band recently played at what is the new incarnation of the former Crystal Cathedral congregation.  Here's the current link. At the bottom of the video player, move your pointer to 29:29. The tune is "Washington and Lee" and he has no idea how it fit into the theme of the sermon either. But it's GREAT Dixieland jazz!

Friday, September 6, 2013

Live moves on

As it always does. Thank you for your kind comments. The 2nd was another sad Anniversary - the last night I saw Brulet. I heard a cat meowing outside yesterday. I stuck my head out the window and called to him, then sat down and cried a while. Later I took Dad and met with my sister to visit a senior residence center much closer to her house than mine, and only 4 blocks from one her son's home.

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

I Miss Her

Today would have been Mother's 87th birthday.  My Dad's 89th was last week. We always celebrated them together over Labor Day Weekend. She's been gone 26 months and each day
 hurts just as much as that first one.

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

New Frimousse Freebies

Frimousse is one extremely creative (and busy) designer/stitcher who freely shares her designs and projects. Do check out her website! Her site is in French, but if necessary take the time to translate.

Poppy pattern on 15-face biscornu, needle book and scissor case.

Very creative and interesting  project that resembles perhaps a sugar bowl - with lid - with ribbon embroidery roses and beads, but suitable for any type of stitching. She calls it "a little thing." I think this is a technique that Frimousse may have created herself. Regardless, it is very interesting and worth a look.

Fabric bags  and here

This fabric bag holds a tea cup, bag of tea AND sewing supplies.

Measuring tape holders. and Here.

Sunday, August 25, 2013

Autor Lea Wait left a comment on my Reading List!

What a pleasant surprise!  Not sure how she found it since almost no one has visited that page, but I am indeed happy she took her time to post. She writes in the genre known as "cozy mysteries," and her Antique Print Mysteries weave a current mystery with well-crafted characters and her interest in antique prints and illustrations together in interesting stories that take place in Maine. I'm really looking forward to reading them!

Lea Wait said...
So happy you've been reading my Shadows Antique Print Mysteries, Linda! Next year, fall of 2014, I'll be starting a new mystery series with Kensington, set in Haven Harbor Maine, with a background of stitchery. I'll let you know when I have an exact publication date. Lea Wait

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Dad to Receive 25-year Library Volunteer Recognition

 A few months ago Dad told me he'd been asked, along with a few other volunteers, to pose for photos to be used in Library posters. I've seen a couple at my local branch, but not him. Last week he learned he's to be recognized for his 25 years of volunteer service serving on boards, teaching computer and genealogy classes, etc. . BTW, he's 89! Please read the article to see what he's done over the years.

Rather than stitching the past couple of weeks I've been reading cozy mysteries (it's stitch or read - read or stitch), am working on certification in Auxiliary Emergency Communications (ham radio operators to assist in disaster situations where most or all public service, relief agency and general communications are down), working on a couple of FEMA Independent Study courses, and MAY be taking a 3-day Train the Trainer class the end of this month. By the time I found out the dates registration had closed, but there may still be a couple of openings.  I go from plenty of time to stitch or read to a LOT of things I need to get done in a short time frame, and back again! What I REALLY should be doing is cleaning house!

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Patriotic Freebie Stitched by Cathryn of Blueladie Designs!

A big Thank You to Cathryn of Blueladie Designs who has shared her stitching. She promises to post a framed version later. Please visit Cathyrn's blog and website to see her designs and other stitching as well!  You can find this chart and my other patriotic designs here.

Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Halloween Biscornu Freebie - 2013 Update

Copyright 2011-2013 LMc Designs / Bits of Floss
All Rights Reserved

See the original design and charts HERE

Sunday, July 28, 2013

New Prairie Schooler Freebie Finish

July 2013 Freebie - Used a lighter orange since the charted DMC was the same color as fabric added a bit to the windows, and that's supposed to be a free-stitch "bat" hanging from the roof on the right. Wish the true colors would post. For my DD.

After 30 minutes I managed to scan and finally find this one .jpg. When I tried to scan the progress on my grape wreath project the program and my computer froze - AGAIN!!  At least this time I didn't have do to a hard shut down to get the frozen scan program to FINALLY end! But after 5 minutes I was just about to.

Sunday, July 7, 2013

WIP Update

When I tried to scan the progress of the grapes with the new all-in-one printer 1) I couldn't find the scanned image, and 2) in trying to find how to find it, my computer froze and I had to do a hard shut down. There are no instructions for using the scanner in the manual. NOOOO!!!  I'm already considering returning the !@##!@ thing.

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Wichelt freebies / More Printer Woes

Just a reminder that Wichelt and many of the other designers listed on the Freebie page put out new charts on a regular basis.  Wichelt's July free graph is a patriotic bird house.

Had lunch with my Dad and sister at Jason's Deli on the anniversary of my Mother's death last week. From there I had to return last year's new printer to Frye's for repair or replacement. This makes 3 returned printers in 3 years! I intended to change brands (again) and thinking laser jet but instead came home with a newer model of returned Canon printer, in part because I had just recently replaced the expensive cartridge of black ink and could use it with this one, and in part because I was told it had a $50 rebate.  But NOOOO! When I got home and had the opportunity to read the rebate slip, only available at check out, turns out one had to buy a refurbished something else AND the printer at the same time to get the rebate.  Because the cost of last printer was just over what they could do an even swap for, they gave me a credit slip for whatever I wanted to get (NEW PRINTER!!) and allowed me to take out another extended warranty for $20.  At this rate I've really only been paying for that extended warranty each return, plus maybe $5 or $10 more for each brand new printer.  AND, I get new ink with each printer, the cost of which exceeds the cost of the printer, of course.  I saved the new black cartridge for later.

What I really want is for my decade plus year old HPLaserJet6L to work again!! Which after many years of reliable printing -and well out of warranty - quit working, of course, right after I bought a new cartridge for it. : (

Thursday, June 27, 2013

WIP Update

Current status of Welcome Friends. I knew I wouldn't like stitching on the Aida 14, and I definitely do NOT,  but by the time I was hating it I just didn't want to start over. It's so stiff that in trying to "sew" a few of the stitches the needle bent. Ive decided to omit the top and bottom sections and just stitch the area including and between the horizontal vines above and below the grapes. I may leave out those horizontal vines as well and end up with an oval or circular design instead.

A very sad day for my family. Mother died two years ago today. I miss her more than ever. I remember clearly that last Sunday I visited her. If there is one day in my entire life I could do over it would be that one day. I would really LISTEN to what she was really trying to tell me then rather than being cheerily upbeat when she suddenly got uncharacteristically serious, only realizing in retrospect why she was being serious and loving her so much more for trying to make me understand. When I obviously didn't, she said nothing more. I so so wish she had. My failure to really listen and understand, and spend so much more time talking to and comforting her is a regret I will always carry with me.  I would give everything but my family  just to have a few more hours or days to be with and really listen to and talk with and hold my Mom.

My Dad tripped on the step of a porch and took a flying hard fall on to the driveway in mid-May. He claimed, only half in jest, that someone was trying to keep him from driving back to Kansas City (he's almost 89) the next day. How he did NOT break something even the doctor doesn't know, but he was badly skinned, bruised and swollen for over a month as a result and is still having some issues. Had he left when intended he'd have been in the middle of the Oklahoma/Kansas tornado outbreak, so I guess the fall was probably a good thing. However, he's decided he's healed enough and is once again driving over the objections of EVERYONE back to KC. My sister is trying to get him to promise this will be the last time. As he told me the trip last fall was the last time, I don't hold out much hope. If you can spare a prayer for his safe journey, it would be appreciated.

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Happy to Recommend New Blog

It's not cross stitch or needlework, but our 123MB friend, Rowland Cole, an amateur but professional quality wildlife photographer from England, has just started a blog:  Through My Lens. He takes beautiful photographs and tells wonderful stories about his photography adventures. He has the most amazing way with both wild and domestic creatures. Even baby squirrels want to go home with him. Check out his new blog!

Monday, June 10, 2013

Another new start

White Santa is still not finished. I've done very little stitching since that post. Just the past week I started stitching on a Dimentions kit I acquired from a fellow stitcher selling stash (which is what *I* should be doing!) with thoughts of my wine aficionado sister and BIL for Christmas - some year anyway.   The fabric is 14-count khaki aida, making the completed piece 10 x 14 (much bigger than I really want to ever frame), is horribly stiff even after I tried to rinse the sizing out, and which I do NOT like. I searched for something 32 count in my stash, but have started stitching on the aida anyway.  I'm normally a "stitcher" but this is so stiff I'm having to do the jab and pull method, which takes me twice as long. I'm hoping after it's been handled a while it'll soften up.

After applying for 2 part-time positions in the past month let me observe that being over 60 and instantly deemed vastly over-qualified for the types of positions that I'd even want to take on at this stage of life equates with being 16 and experienced at nothing - totally pointless.  Everyone is very happy and pleased with the knowledge and breadth of experience I bring to my volunteer activities, but no one will hire or pay me. It's very demoralizing.

Monday, April 29, 2013

Upgraded My Ham Radio License

Haven't been stitching lately, but I have been doing a lot of recent volunteer work and just passed the exam to upgrade my amateur ("ham") radio license from Technician to General. That required I learn a bit about circuits and electricity and electronics and antennas, etc. Absolutely NO background in any of those and wasn't sure my old brain would appreciate the tough work out!  I didn't really expect to pass the first time, but YEAH!!! I actually didn't need to upgrade my license because nothing I do requires it, but after 6 years I thought it was about time - and to hopefully give me a bit more credibility with the radio guys I'm frequently around. But here is the most amazing part: When the husband of my BFF heard I'd passed it, he personally emailed to offer me his father's shortwave receiver. I was stunned, humbled and honored. After checking out what it was he wanted to send me I said; YES, THANK YOU SO MUCH!! It's on it's way. I met my BFF on a prodigy BB in the late 80's and we've been friends and "sisters" ever since. She had her husband have been kind, caring and very generous over the past 25 years. (Wow, 25 years!!) Whoever alleges that you can not possibly meet and make lifelong friends via the internet just doesn't understand the real connections that bring people together in true friendship.  I'll probably need help getting an antenna set up properly, but I know a bunch of radio guys ... :D  One doesn't NEED a radio license just to listen, but it's a start on something I NEVER EVER thought about EVER doing.

As I've gotten older and my younger professional life is long behind me I've truly pondered to the point of worry about what I'm supposed to do with the rest of it. Guess volunteerism and radio stuff is going to be it - for now anyway. 

In the meantime, I put in 32 volunteer hours last weekend between handling radio traffic at the March for Babies and assisting at the Emergency Operations Center, which ramped up for a couple of public events because of the tragedy at the Boston Marathon. Will be doing similar this weekend as well. I'd like to officially report that other than meeting and talking with a bunch of very nice other volunteers and with some great police and fire officers, it was pretty boring. Which is a really good thing!  Next time I'm taking some stitching with me!

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Santa Update


After diligently stitching on this for a couple of weeks, I hit a wall when I realized there's a little error in the bag around his waist and can't figure out why it's not matching up right. Don't you hate when that happens? I haven't stitched on it or anything else since.

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Teacup Posies Freebies and ?? re Machine Embroidery?

Vermillion has completed posting all 12 of it's 2011 Teacup Posies freebies.  They also currently have  50% off their machine embroidery digital downloads through Monday, February 26th.

Anyone ever do any machine embroidery? I don't know that I've ever seen a finished piece. Does it look like cross stitch or other machine embroidered items?

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Stitchers Alphabet Freebies

By Brooke's Books.  Currently available:A through the new Y. Check out her other free and charity projects then scroll down for the Alphabet freebies.

Monday, February 18, 2013

Blue US Santa Completed

And added the few missing stitches to the Red Santa as well. Both from Down Santa Claus Lane by Leisure Arts (1994).  And, being on a bit of an unusual roll, started stitching the White/Gold US Santa as well.  So far today:

Friday, February 15, 2013

Newest WIP: Blue US Santa with Flag

Also from Leisure Arts Down Santa Clause Lane. I've been stitching on this for a bit over a week. It's a companion to the Red US Santa. Having located the book I see that the 676 and 729 should have a gold Kreinik blending filament mixed with it. Oh well. At some point, IF I can find the box with those in it I may add a bit over the top of some of the stitches. I'll rinse and iron it later, then maybe add blending filament. On 16ct white Aida with DMC.

Sunday, February 10, 2013

New Dragon Dreams Valentine Freebie

on Dragon Dreams FB page - be sure to Like and/or leave a nice Thank You!

Valentine Dragon 13

Saturday, February 2, 2013

Pulled my Designer and Inexcusable Chart Symbols Vent / Crochet is SOOO much easier

After far too many hours over 2 days I was FINALLY able to rechart a second impossible to read Santa with Flag chart. I'd gone on an internet hunt and found an image of one that had a similar look. Imagine my surprise when I saw the name of the book it came from, realized that SOMEWHERE I had it, finally found it then discovered new Santa with Flag was on the very same page as the one I recharted at least 10 years ago and just finished. As for recharting poorly chosen symbols that frequently looked alike, well, actually they are alike, just on different colored backgrounds, meaning on the dark simulated floss colors you can't even see them. I especially hated the full 1/3 of the color symbols that consisted of background color covered with teeeniney red or grey dots. You have no idea how hard it is to figure out which pink with dots is supposed to be which color, especially when charted right next to each other. It was all just too frustrating, and my eyes quit focusing a couple of days ago.

A long time ago I stitched a Santa with a similar look (must also have been from a Leisure Arts book or the same designer) on a heavy forest green sweatshirt  I only wear it to Christmas functions, but I've worn it to those for at least 20 years. I noticed this year it's developed little holes near one cuff.  I wore it anyway and hoped no one noticed.  I would LOVE to stitch another one but getting the needle through the waste canvas AND a heavy sweatshirt material killed my hands. It was all I could do to finish it then.  OTOH, despite all the washings in warm water the floss and colors have held up remarkably well. Wonder if there is a way to cut out the design and attach it to a new sweat shirt. Hmmmmm.

BTW, I gave up on knitting after only 2 weeks. Instead I grabbed a skein of bright yellow yarn (the pre-school great-nephew I made an afghan in primary colors for will graduate from high school this year) and a size J crochet hook to take with me to the Knitting and Spirituality group instead.  I did try to knit, just that my brain doesn't want to help me and it takes just too much concentration, and too long. One Sunday I made a complete bright yellow granny square in well under 10 minutes - since unraveled and rolled back into a ball.  Last Sunday I grabbed a skein of heathered "Mid Grey" and started playing with the idea of a prayer shawl. After a bit of hit or miss, I came up with this combination of half-double crochet stitches. The texture is created by going under only the back loop in one direction and the two top loops in the other. It's a really easy combination. (Click on the picture for a larger image.) I did start out trying to make a triangular shawl but sitting there in the Narthex couldn't get that tip to work out right, so this one is rectangular. Or, if I'd thought more before I started, I could have made it about 6" wider and it could have worked as a lap blanket, but alas not now.  I'm hoping it'll be long enough for a shawl. I'm already almost through the 2 skeins I had in that color and I doubt it's still available.That's an actual color scan, even if it looks like it's in black and white.

Saturday, January 26, 2013

Another Volunteer of the Year Award!

Tarrant County RACES* 2013 Jan and Ulis Hair Volunteer of the Year Award received at NWS SKYWARN (storm spotter training)  program today in Fort Worth. My goodness gracious! Thank you Tarrant County Office of Emergency Management and RACES!!

*Radio Amateur Civil Emergency Service

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Pam Kellogg freebie

Cardinal Guest Towel - by Pam Kellogg - 1 day only from CraftsNThings Blog, however this may continue to be available in the Archives for January 23rd. Click on ARCHIVES then SEWING, where you'll find a cross stitch "Love" pillow posted on January 14th, also a Pam Kellogg design.  There may be others in the Archives as well.

Friday, January 18, 2013

US Santa Finish!

I think, I may yet spot a missing stitch. Yeah!! I'll make it into a Christmas ornament for my sister (wish me luck as I am finish-challenged), and give it to her next time I see her, since it was my intent to have started and finished by last Christmas.  :D It is from a chart in Leisure Arts  Down Santa Claus Lane (c)1994.

1/19 Addendum: Well, phooey, I missed a few back stitches in the beard. Will take care of that. BTW, I had to frog the entire left hand (see WIP below). After quite some time trying to figure out what was wrong and the stitches weren't lining up I realized I'd inadvertently doubled the height of the furry cuff and it was something like FOUR spaces too high. Well, no wonder I was having issues. LOL BTW, last Sunday we were taught how to purl. I tried once at home but was doing something wrong so haven't practiced further.

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Updated Finishing Tutorial Link

The Twisted Stitcher - Learn to Finish - various cross-stitching finishing ideas and techniques

Monday, January 7, 2013

New Projects for 2013

As if I need any more WIP's and UFO's!

Started on New Year's Day. For my sister. Have intended to stitch it for ... mmmm ... 10 years, at least. Santa has wrapped himself in a US Flag. The blue star field is over the other shoulder. It's from a hardback Leisure Arts book I have, but the chart is in color, which makes an awful working copy and stitching from one of those books is a pain, so I recharted it into Pattern Maker for the duration. It occurred to me after I started stitching that if I stitched it on 32ct white evenweave, I could probably avoid stitching all that white.    16ct white aida. 66w  x 59h
LEARNING TO KNIT! My very first stitches, almost. The first 6 rows were so much more awful I pulled them apart and started over this morning. As you can see, I have a LOT to learn!  The Ministerial Student at church is offering lessons as part of a program she's calling "Knitting and Spirituality." I need her to figure out  what I did wrong on: the first row, and near the middle, and how I managed to already add 2 extra stitches. and what the heck I did wrong to end up with that extra loop at the end. And how to avoid same in the future. Next lesson: How to purl.

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

! ! ! HAPPY NEW YEAR ! ! !

My best wishes for your good health
and much happiness in the coming year. 
And may all your stitchy dreams come true /

Kind Regards from LindaMc at Bits of Floss

* * * * * * * *

Aha! I met my final stitching goal for 2012. At last I took up needle, eventually found the right threads and FINALLY finished my 3-PSSanta piece just before midnight!  I've got several other WIP's to complete in 2013 and more things I REALLY  would LIKE to stitch than I will ever get to. Don't we all??? And I have yet to design and stitch the Wedding Sampler I've intended for my daughter and her husband, who recently celebrated their THIRD anniversary. Oy vey! I need encouragement to finally tackle that one. Perhaps what I have had in mind since that day is more complicated than it really needs to be. 

Happy Stitching for all in 2013 as well!