Sunday, September 15, 2019


I am slowly adding leaves to the Halloween Topiary. I have managed to finish the right side and I am hoping to finish the top and start the left side. 
I had the wild idea that I would finish all of the leaves last weekend, but alas that was not to be. I use the needle minder to hold up the cloth on the left side so I don't get it dirty while I stitch....I use my left hand mostly to stitch.

I have been adding one or two rows to my sweater on a couple of evenings when I am not too tired. I am so happy with the way this is turning out. The pattern is so easy to follow and I think it looks great. Somehow I think the wedding day is going to be too busy for me to manage any knitting. LOL
I am hoping to get a bunch done in the car ride to our daughter's wedding at the end of the week. Maybe work on it during some free time before the rehearsal and the rehearsal dinner too. 

I am gathering items to bring with us. Katie wants the crocheted bear at the wedding as well as some of the decorations from the shower so they are waiting by the front door until we pack the car later this week.
I can't believe the wedding is almost here already. Wow!

I am joining Kathy for some Slow Sunday Stitching. Pop on over to her site to see what other bloggers are stitching.

Thanks for stopping by!

Sunday, September 8, 2019

It got better!

I am talking about the book I was reading. 

I finished it and I have to tell you that just about a third of the way through I began to really enjoy this book. I didn't want a book with angst as well as marriage and family strife, but the book evolved and became a really thoughtful book about couple and girlfriend relationships. I was hooked and I will definitely read more books by this author. I am very glad that I stuck with it.

Last weekend we celebrated my MIL's 86th birthday. 
That's her with Hubby and our son, Matt. She is looking good after a recent health scare.

I made some progress on the Halloween Topiary last weekend. 
Not much has been happening with it since then as school started this week and I have been exhausted. 

The only crafting I have been really doing during the week is knitting my sweater as I can just complete one or two rows here and there even if I am tired. 
I think it is looking very nice. The pattern is easy to follow and I think it is pretty.  I am looking forward to wearing it. Right now it seems like it will be the correct size.

I am joining Kathy for some Slow Sunday Stitching. Pop on over to her site to see what other bloggers are stitching. I want to add more leaves to the border of Halloween Topiary today.

I am also planning on making a bunch of food that we can just heat and eat this week for dinner. We are eating dinner at 8:30 and 9 o'clock or later at night, because we work late. really don't want to come home and cook at that time, so I will be making some Spaghetti Sauce with Sausage and Meatballs as well as Red Cabbage Slaw and Tomato and Mozzarella Salad. I want to make a big batch of mashed potatoes too, because I can keep some for us and also give some to my mom to heat up during the week. I might cook up some Chicken Tenders to heat up also. I don't want us to be eating junk food just because we are tired. This past week Hubby made Scrambled Eggs and English Muffins on our first late night and boy did that taste wonderful. I really want us to have some real dinners most nights though I am not averse to breakfast for dinner.

Thanks for stopping by!

Sunday, September 1, 2019

Where did the summer go?

It is the first of September. Wow! My summer vacation went by so quickly. Tuesday starts both my day job as a Math Teaching Assistant at a local high school and my evening/night position twice a week as an Adjunct Professor of Mathematics at a local university. I can't believe both start on the same day! Ugh! Usually I get one day of the day job before having both. I am going to be exhausted Tuesday night that is for sure. 

Now on to more pleasant subjects. I have made a lot of progress on my Halloween Topiary.
I have completed the brown part of the border and now I am adding the leaves. Once this is done I will go back and add the moon, last two satin bats and the ghosts. Since I stopped working on the satin parts, the stitching is much more fun.

I frogged the sweater I was making for Hubby. It was going to be too small and when I measured it against a couple of his other sweaters I found that he had two heavy maroon sweaters. He didn't need another and he really didn't want me to make him one. I really liked the pattern though so I may make him this sweater in the future with a pretty blue yarn. He doesn't have a blue sweater and the color looks so nice on him.

I was really enjoying knitting though so I found a pattern for myself called Sangria, where I can use the yarn that I had bought. 
It is quite an easy knit and it doesn't bother my wrist/thumb. The pattern is pretty too.
I am also reading what will most likely be my final book of the summer.
This is another new author for me. I am about halfway through. I almost stopped reading this book after the first chapter. It isn't bad, but I really am not into books about cheating husbands and marriages and families falling apart. It is quite easy reading though so I have stuck with it. I still can't say that I really like this book, but it is too late in the summer to start something new so I will find out how this ends and hope there is something uplifting at some point in this book. My mind will be too busy with math come Tuesday to get immersed in another book unless I decide that I need something to read before bed.

I bought a whole bunch of Italian Prune Plums at a farm-stand last week and whipped up my Aunt Alice's recipe for Peach Cake, but I substituted the plums.
The recipe makes two cakes like you see above. It came out quite tasty if I do say so myself. I gave half of a cake to my mom and the other half to my MIL. Hubby and I have been sharing one of them. Yum!

I am joining Kathy for some Slow Sunday Stitching. Pop on over to her site to see what other bloggers are stitching. I will spend some time on my Halloween Topiary today.  

Thanks for stopping by!

Sunday, August 25, 2019

Satin Floss

The Halloween Topiary that I am working on recommends using DMC Satin floss for some parts.....the jack o'lantern, bats and cat. I really dislike working with it and I don't really love the way it looks on the piece. 
I will stick with it as I don't feel like picking it out, but I am finding it somewhat difficult to work with. I am using shorter lengths to discourage fraying. I can't get it to lay nicely on the fabric either. I have read some tips and watched some You Tube videos, but I just don't like it. To tell you the truth, I don't really feel like it is adding anything special to this piece either. I would be just as happy with standard embroidery floss rather than the somewhat shiny satin. I actually was avoiding finishing the jack o'lantern, because I don't like the floss. I am now trying to finish the cat and the bats so that I am done with the offending satin floss.

I have been slowly working on the sweater for Hubby. I am finished with the ribbing and just started on the body of the back of the sweater. 
I have changed to the larger needles, so I now I can work on more than one row at a time. I am trying to avoid aggravating the arthritis in my right thumb. It is better with knitting than with crochet. 

That fact is quite discouraging for me as I really love to work on crocheted items. I am still slowly working on this lavender scarf.
I can complete one four row pattern at a time, but then I must put it down. There have been several nights recently where all I want to do is sit and either knit or crochet all evening, but I just can't. 

I have been getting some reading done instead. This book was on the swap rack at my local library.
The author is new to me. I am totally enjoying this book. The characters, setting and story line are quite interesting. I am so glad that I picked this book up. I will definitely look for more of her books in the future.

I am joining Kathy for some Slow Sunday Stitching. Pop on over to her site to see what other bloggers are stitching. I will be working on the Halloween Topiary.

Thanks for stopping by!

Sunday, August 18, 2019

In or On

I finished stitching the confetti on the Halloween Topiary. 
Now I can move on to the rest of the stitching which is all solid blocks of stitching one color. I have already started the Jack-O'Lantern at the base of the tree. The rest should stitch up fairly quickly barring any mistakes.

The title of today's post comes from the first sentence. I was debating whether to use "in" or "on". Obviously, I used "on". That got me musing though about a sure way to tell a native Long Islander from someone who does not frequent Long Island, NY. Now I have relatives who live "in" Boston or Racine or Florida. I claim to live "in" New York, but I live "on" Long Island. Don't ask me why this is so, but when an acquaintance or TV personality talks about going somewhere "in" Long Island, you easily know they are not from the Island. They might visit often, but they haven't learned the lingo. I am sure there are quirks in language wherever one lives that easily identify "outsiders".  

Well, enough of that. I bought yarn! Okay, so it is not any high-end yarn, but I want to knit a sweater for my hubby and he is not real enthusiastic about it. He wears pull-over sweaters in the winter and I have never made him one.
I am not an accomplished knitter (I will try anything though), so I did not want to buy expensive yarn. I am going to make the Dan sweater from Ravelry. I have swatched the pattern in this yarn and had to change to smaller needles. The pattern is quite easy though and I think hope Hubby will like it.

I am joining Kathy for some Slow Sunday StitchingPop on over to her site to see what other bloggers are stitching. I will be working on the Halloween Topiary today. I want to finish that Jack-O'Lantern. 

Thanks for stopping by!

Sunday, August 11, 2019

Slow Sunday Stitching

There is a lot of confetti stitching of 4 different oranges in this Halloween Topiary, but I am working through it. 
I decided to start with the confetti, because then the rest of the piece will go quite quickly as it is all solid colors. I am finishing up the third color and there is not much of the 4th. I am quite please how it is looking.

I finished the second donation scarf. 
What I thought was a full skein of red yarn wasn't so I had to add a different color. I had just enough of the blue yarn to add 11 rows to either end of the red. The scarf is just over 50 inches now so I can stop. I just have to weave in the one blue end.

I am joining Kathy for some Slow Sunday Stitching. Pop on over to her site to see what other bloggers are stitching. I will be working on the Halloween Topiary. 

Thanks for stopping by!

Wednesday, August 7, 2019

Yarn and Books

I finished the knitted variegated donation scarf. 

I discovered that I don't have enough of this awful red yarn to make a full scarf. 

Thankfully, I have more of this yarn in blue. I think I will just crochet blue on either end of the red to get the length I need. At least that will get more of this yarn out of my stash.

I enjoy reading, but during the school year I just don't have the time to invest in reading a novel. I am trying to make up for that this summer. I have finished these two books recently.
I loved "Last One Home" by Debbie Macomber. This is the first book that I have read in a while that I just didn't want to put down. I enjoyed "The Sugar Camp Quilt" by Jennifer Chiaverini. This is the 7th book in the Elm Creek Quilt series. I was surprised that this entire book was set in the past which was not what I was expecting. Other books in this series usually have both a contemporary and historic part to them. Never-the-less this was an enjoyable book to read.
I am about to start reading "Angel Falls" by Kristin Hannah. I am hoping to finish this book and maybe one or two more before the summer is over. 

Joining Ginny for Yarn Along today. Pop on over to her site to see what other bloggers are knitting and reading.

Thanks for stopping by!

Sunday, August 4, 2019

Slow Sunday Stitching

I am making progress on my Halloween Topiary. 
The topiary stem stitched up quickly, but the top is full of a confetti of 4 different colors. It is taking some time to make sure that I am not making any mistakes, but I am really enjoying stitching this. 

I have briefly put aside "Jingle as ye come, Jingle as ye go" in favor of the Topiary, but I did make some progress on it at the beginning of the week.
I added the holly berries. Not much, but I am pleased with the way this is going.

Yesterday, I paid a visit to a local quilt shop in order to start gathering fabrics to make this quilt for my daughter. It is a scrappy quilt and I will need a multitude of fat quarters. This is what I have so far.

Life has been hectic here since last weekend's shower. My MIL hadn't been feeling well for quite some time, but is very doctor adverse. She did not make it to the shower on Saturday. On Sunday, Hubby had to call an ambulance. MIL needed 3 units of blood due to an extremely low hemoglobin number and then tests to determine where she was bleeding. Needless to say, she had surgery on Friday to remove a tumor from her colon and is now on the mend. It has been a long and stressful week. 

I am joining Kathy for some Slow Sunday Stitching. Pop on over to her site to see what other bloggers are stitching. It is a beautiful day here, so I think I will sit on my porch and work on my topiary.

Thanks for stopping by!

Wednesday, July 31, 2019

A new start

Many of you know that I am not a big fan of Halloween. I have my reasons, but for some reason I had the urge to work on a Halloween cross-stitch. I was looking through some cross-stitch magazines and this popped out at me.
It is from the September 2011 Cross-stitch and Needlework magazine. I had the fabric and most of the floss. I ordered the glow-in-the dark and the satin floss. Now I am ready to stitch.
I have also made a decent amount of progress on "Jingle as ye come, Jingle as ye go". 
I need to add some snowflakes to the upper left-hand corner and then I can move on. 

My new Stella Dora day-lilies are in bloom as is one of my hydrangea plants. 

My other two bushes don't have even a single bloom this year. I don't know why. 

My tomato plants are yielding a bountiful harvest.
This is only one of two bowls, this one being the smaller.

Thanks for stopping by!

Sunday, July 28, 2019

Bridal Shower and Secret Stitching reveal

My daughter's bridal shower was Saturday at my home. I can finally reveal the secret stitching!
I took a photo that Katie had taken of she and her fiance. 
I added it to a pattern designed by Ursula Michael called Best Friend Wedding Sampler that I found in a "Cross-stitch & Needlework" magazine from July 2013.
 You can see the changes that I made.
We had a wonderful celebration!
Her bridesmaids were extremely helpful.
There was plenty of food. Appetizers
 and lunch
This is a delicious Mimosa Sangria that I found online. I used Prosecco instead of champagne.
Of course we had to toast the bride!
There were games... 
and more games...
with prizes made by the groom's mother, mason jars filled with a delicious nut mixture that is the groom's specialty recipe in keeping with the mason jar theme.
I made the mason jar floral arrangements for a little decoration on the food and drink tables.
The weather was beautiful. This is the bride-to-be and me
and with her future mother-in-law.
Most of the guests came from out of state.
A few were from nearby.
Thankfully two of the grandmother's were able to make the party.
Everyone brought a recipe card to help fill this personalized binder.
There were lots of presents too.
Katie was quite surprised by my special gift.
The cake was beautiful. I gave the baker a copy of the invitation and she matched the colors and flowers.

Katie also thought that the bridal bear is adorable.
That is my wedding veil hanging on the door as a decoration. The crown was also my mother's. Katie wore it at the end of the day for a picture. She will have a different veil on her own special day.
The gift bow bouquet was made by one of the bridesmaids who also made the sash. 
She will use it during the rehearsal.
That same bridesmaid made the cookie treats that everyone got as a favor.
All-in-all it was a wonderful day!

I am joining Kathy for some Slow Sunday Stitching now that I can share what I was working on for many Sundays. Pop on over to her site to see what other bloggers are stitching.

Thanks for stopping by.