Friday 29 July 2011

The fun of working

Hello Everyone,

I am now working 6 days a week ... I never realised how much effort it takes to work that much. I don't have to do much planning but it is frustrating I have barely any time to myself!

I have done a tiny tiny bit on Lickle Ted, a very tiny bit.

Lickle Ted
So not much done since last time, but it is almost all filled in in the middle!


Thursday 28 July 2011

Finished ... Sort of ....

well I am finished with to have and to hold except for the names and dates. Since you don't need to see those :D it is to all intents and purposes finished. It is a good feeling. I loved the way that the colours came together at the end and the back stitching looks so interesting with the thick and thin lines. All the french knots are on as well which was quite pleasant to do. I like french knots I've decided.

I haven't been doing much stitching at all! I've been sick with a BAD cold for the past week and I haven't had much energy after 8 o'clock in the evening and I don't get home from work until 7! Oh well hopefully I will get over this soon and get my energy back. I am barely making it through the days. I have to sleep after my morning classes just so I can do my afternoon ones. So if you don't see me around much that is why, the energy to keep going leaves me very little for anything but surviving.


Saturday 23 July 2011

The Show

So the show is today and tomorrow though it is almost tomorrow less than 2 hrs to go!

There was some beautiful art work. The quilts were amazing, the paintings gorgeous and of course the cross stitch was stunning. (I'm not biased at all).

Here are my frogs on display!
And a view of All Our Yesterdays

I didn't win any prizes, I talked to the lady and her comment was that they were too small. Not big enough to win against some of the bigger works.

Here's the big winner
The cats were gorgeous I had a look at them and the detail is pretty. There isn't much I could do against that! Here are some other works that I liked.

This also won first in another category
A pretty pillow :D
So now I know what to do for next time. Make it bigger but not too big that I'm not allowed to display it at all.
These cards caught my friends eye
The cards are stitched. Where you use the thread to make the shapes you want it to.

As the day wore on out came the fireworks :D I just had to try to take photos and I don't think I did too badly.
So with a lovely end to the day I have got on here put up the post full of lovely photos and I hope to win next time!

Night night,

Friday 22 July 2011

Avoiding the computer

I've had that sort of week. I haven't had time to think. I've done barely any stitching but I seem to have not stopped. I now teach 4 afternoons during the week and 5 mornings. I also nanny one morning and one afternoon during the week. Yes that means I am essentially working 5 days full time and one half day. As much as I love softball I can't wait until it's over so I get some of my weekend back!

I have been reading a lot because I haven't been able to settle in to any one thing, and I can read in 5 minute breaks. I have been reading Mercedes Lackey's "Sleeping Beauty". It's from her 500 kingdoms series, fairy tales with a twist. I love her writing it's so enjoyable to read. I have quite a large number of her books in my collection. I have most of her Valdemar series and I am collecting the 500 kingdoms books now.

I do have some pictures to post. I have put some words on the To Have and To Hold and I have been making labels to put on the back of my pictures.

To Have and To Hold 20-7-11
Labels for my finished cross stitches
 The labels say "Handmade with love Caitlin 2011" I have stuck them to the back of the frames because you can't put signatures on the front or they don't like them when you put the exhibits into shows. I put the frogs and all our yesterdays into the Mt Gravatt Show yesterday and tomorrow I get to see them :D. I know this is just a local show for my area and nothing compared to the royal queensland show (EKKA) but the Mt Gravatt Show means a lot to me. For as long as I can remember I have gone to the show. Every year we looked forward to seeing what fun stuff will be there to see. I live just behind the showgrounds and we can see the fireworks from our back porch. We walk out our back gate and up to the show, the memories are many. So being able to see my own work in this show will be amazing.

I will post pictures tomorrow of some of he displays, they are always gorgeous and I saw them setting up the quilts when I dropped in my cross stitch so it is exciting.

I will try and get on more frequently this week but we shall see it should hopefully be not that bad.


Friday 15 July 2011

Update: To Have and To Hold

Well I am well and truly onto the backstitch. One colour is all done. Actually all the backstitch around the flowers and leaves is done, now the only parts are the words and the design of the 2 people. I love watching this come together.

To Have and To Hold - 13-7-11
Yes I know that says the 13-7 I lost my camera for a couple of days and I haven't done any work on it since then. That and I've been really sick. One of the kids has given me a gastro bug, thankfully I'm over it now but.....

 Anyway I took my entry into the Ekka on Tuesday but I have to wait a month to find out whether I've won. That was the Land In Sight. I also took my form up today to the local show, to hand it in. I'm putting the frogs and the AOYs in there. It is so exciting. That show is next weekend the 23rd and 24th of July so I don't have to wait as long to find out. I will make sure I take my camera and take lots and lots of pictures!


Thursday 14 July 2011

Joan Elliott

I have fallen in love with Joan Elliott's designs. I bought her Bookazine, the one that has a collection of her works that have been published in the cross stitcher magazine. I love, love, love, love, love her seasonal faeries. She uses a lot of purple in her designs and it just happens to be my favourite colour. I love the detail she puts in all her designs, they are a joy to just look at and the detail... I've never dealt with beads and metallics and she uses a tonne in her designs. After I've gone through the current WIPs and the boxer chart I will seriously consider doing this set.
Bookazine with Summer Fairy on the front

 I know the images are really bad but you get the idea on what they look like. They are amazing.


Saturday 9 July 2011

Framed and STUNNING!

Hey everyone :D

Well I went to the framers yesterday and I came back with two absolutely gorgeous cross stitches and a MUCH lighter wallet! Let's just say I am going to do as much as possible myself next time.

Tree Frog Trio
Land In Sight
Land In Sight goes into the show on Tuesday and in a months time I will find out how I did :D
Don't the frogs look amazing in that colour? I never would have picked those colours out myself. The lady in the shop was really good and had such an eye for picking the right combination.

I just wanted to show you the finished pieces as soon as I found my camera and actually had the pictures in front of me :D I'm so happy with them. My first really framed cross stitch :D

Friday 8 July 2011

pictures :)

To Have and To Hold
finally there are picture updates :)

my wrist is NOT broken!


Well I spent 3 hrs yesterday going from one place to the next. From the doctors to the xray and then back to the doctors, then I got my good prognosis. It's still sprained but it isn't anything worse than that! I then worked 4 hrs and then went straight down the coast for the Landrover meeting. Which was great, good food, great company makes for a lovely evening.

I WILL post pictures tonight. I don't have time to hang around on the computer now as I got a call from the framer saying my Land in Sight and Frogs and ready to be picked up. An expensive venture but it will be worth it. Then I have to go into work again today to deal with this database.


Thursday 7 July 2011

Onto Backstitching!

Well I am now onto backstitching. I am in the train that doesn't really like backstitching but I think that is because I would rather be doing crosses. I do love the effect backstitching gives and I will happily backstitch away just to see it ping. And it does start to ping.

I will post photos later of to have and to hold. I will be going to the doctor soon to get my wrist checked because 2 weeks after I hurt it it is still hurting, and throbbing. Hopefully all the doctor says is that it is badly sprained and just be careful. I really hope I haven't broken anything. I don't know how I will survive if I have broken it because I need both hands to play the piano and teach. Or at least I should be using both hands and if I need a cast softball will be out for the rest of the year.
Oh well off to the doctor to get a verdict.


Tuesday 5 July 2011

Quick Stitch update

Well this week is crazy. I'm not only doing my job at work but also doing the job of the receptionist. I have a new respect for the receptionist. I have been fighting with the computers, calling parents and organising lessons and I haven't done half of what she does! I'm glad I usually only have to teach.

Here are some photo updates :D I have actually found some time to stitch and I have just a little bit more of the light light blue to do in half stitches and then I only have back stitches and french knots left for To Have and To Hold

To Have and To Hold
 I also have a body and feet that are now connected with my hedgehog. It looks gorgeous :D

I spent a couple of hours shopping for yarns on Saturday to try and find just the right colour for the skin. Do you know how hard it is to find a skin coloured yarn? Apparently noone wants to stock quite so light a pink! I finally found an apricotish colour. Hopefully it will work otherwise it's back to the drawing board.

I'm now reading one of Nora Roberts trilogies. The first book is called Jewels of the Sun and the name of the trilogy itself escapes me. More updates later as I get the parts done.


Monday 4 July 2011

The City Of Dreaming Books

This book by Walter Moers starts in an unconventional way. It starts by warning you not to read on. If you have thin skin and weak nerves you shouldn't continue but if you are a reckless soul then you will enjoy this adventure.

It's based in a world called Zamonia, and it is a translation of a novel written by Optimus Yarnspinner. Zamonia lives and breathes books. Everything has something to do with books, either writing, reading, publishing, or selling. This story is how Optimus finds the orm the creative force that great stories are written from. He goes on a search for a mysterious writer and ends up in the adventure of a lifetime.

I won't go into anymore detail but I will give this recommendation. If you have kids this is an easy read and kids will either enjoy reading it or have it read to them. There are wonderful illustrations mixed throughout that add to the enjoyment. If you don't have kids don't despair! It is a book that is enjoyable to read for everyone and I would recommend it to everyone but if you don't like fantasy then you may want to skip this book. I give it 5 stars, I thoroughly enjoyed reading it and loved the whole adventure.


Friday 1 July 2011

Book List

Book List

BBC Book List
Apparently the BBC reckons most people will have only read 6 of the 100 books here.
1) Look at the list and make those you have read bold.
2) Star (*) the ones you LOVE.
3) Italicize those you plan on reading

I've organised it like I saw someone else do it in read, partially read, and yet to read.

  1. Pride and Prejudice – Jane Austen
  2. The Lord of the Rings – JRR Tolkien
  3. Jane Eyre – Charlotte Bronte 
  4. Harry Potter series – JK Rowling
  5. His Dark Materials – Philip Pullman
  6. Great Expectations – Charles Dickens
  7. Little Women – Louisa M Alcott
  8. Oliver Twist – Charles Dickens
  9. Alice in Wonderland – Lewis Carroll
  10. The Wind in the Willows – Kenneth Grahame
  11. Swallows and Amazons – Arthur Ransome
  12. Notes From A Small Island – Bill Bryson
  13. Chronicles of Narnia – CS Lewis
  14. The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe – CS Lewis
  15. The Da Vinci Code – Dan Brown
  16. Anne of Green Gables – LM Montgomery
  17. Sense and Sensibility – Jane Austen
  18. The Secret Garden – Frances Hodgson Burnett 
  19. Charlotte’s Web – EB White
  20. The Faraway Tree Collection – Enid Blyton
  21. Hamlet – William Shakespeare
  22. Charlie and the Chocolate Factory – Roald Dahl
  23. The Hitch Hiker’s Guide to the Galaxy – Douglas Adams
  24. David Copperfield – Charles Dickens
  25. Winnie the Pooh – AA Milne
  26. Adventures of Sherlock Holmes – Sir Arthur Conan Doyle

Partially Read
  1. The Bible
  2. Complete Works of Shakespeare
  3. The Hobbit – JRR Tolkien
  4. Animal Farm – George Orwell
  5. Count of Monte Cristo – Alexandre Dumas
  6. Moby Dick – Herman Melville
  7. A Christmas Carol – Charles Dickens

Yet to read
  1. War and Peace – Leo Tolstoy
  2. Wuthering Heights – Emily Bronte
  3. Nineteen Eighty Four – George Orwell 
  4. Catcher in the Rye – JD Salinger
  5. The Time Traveller’s Wife – Audrey Niffenegger
  6. Gone With The Wind – Margaret Mitchell
  7. The Great Gatsby – F Scott Fitzgerald
  8. Grapes of Wrath – John Steinbeck
  9. Tess of the D’Urbervilles – Thomas Hardy
  10. To Kill a Mockingbird – Harper Lee
  11. Memoirs of a Geisha – Arthur Golden
  12. Dune – Frank Herbert
  13. The Lovely Bones – Alice Sebold
  14. Bridget Jones’s Diary – Helen Fielding
  15. Midnight’s Children – Salman Rushdie
  16. Dracula – Bram Stoker
  17. The Inferno – Dante
  18. The Bell Jar – Sylvia Plath
  19. The Color Purple – Alice Walker
  20. The Remains of the Day – Kazuo Ishiguro
  21.  Heart of Darkness – Joseph Conrad
  22. The Little Prince – Antoine De Saint-Exupery
  23. Watership Down – Richard Adams
  24. Les Miserables – Victor Hugo
  25. Catch 22 – Joseph Heller
  26. Birdsong – Sebastian Faulks
  27. Middlemarch – George Eliot
  28. Bleak House – Charles Dickens
  29. Brideshead Revisited – Evelyn Waugh
  30. Emma – Jane Austen
  31. Persuasion – Jane Austen
  32. The Kite Runner – Khaled Hosseini
  33. One Hundred Years of Solitude – Gabriel Garcia Marquez
  34. The Woman in White – Wilkie Collins
  35. The Handmaid’s Tale – Margaret Atwood
  36. Lord of the Flies – William Golding
  37. Atonement – Ian McEwan
  38. A Tale Of Two Cities – Charles Dickens
  39. Love In The Time Of Cholera – Gabriel Garcia Marquez
  40. On The Road – Jack Kerouac
  41. Jude the Obscure – Thomas Hardy
  42. Vanity Fair – William Makepeace Thackeray
  43. Possession – AS Byatt
  44. Madame Bovary – Gustave Flaubert
  45. The Five People You Meet In Heaven – Mitch Albom
  46. Confederacy of Dunces – John Kennedy Toole
  47. The Three Musketeers – Alexandre Dumas
  48. Anna Karenina – Leo Tolstoy
  49. Rebecca – Daphne Du Maurier
  50. Captain Corelli’s Mandolin – Louis De Berniere
  51. A Prayer for Owen Meaney – John Irving
  52. Cold Comfort Farm – Stella Gibbons
  53. The Shadow of the Wind – Carlos Ruiz Zafon
  54. Germinal – Emile Zola
  55. Cloud Atlas – David Mitchell
  56. A Fine Balance – Rohinton Mistry
  57. The Wasp Factory – Iain Banks
  58. A Town Like Alice – Nevil Shute
  59. Crime and Punishment – Fyodor Dostoyevsky
  60. Ulysses – James Joyce
  61. Far From The Madding Crowd – Thomas Hardy
  62. Life of Pi – Yann Martel
  63. A Suitable Boy – Vikram Seth
  64. Brave New World – Aldous Huxley
  65. The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time – Mark Haddon
  66. Of Mice and Men – John Steinbeck
  67. Lolita – Vladimir Nabokov
  68. The Secret History – Donna Tartt
Ohk I an slightly appalled at myself! I pride myself on having read a variety of books but I realise how little I have actually read. I tend towards fantasy of course which isn't represented much on this list. But that is no excuse.

I'm starting a book review page and I am going to make a vow to start reading a lot of books I have never read.

My parents have gone through their books and over half of the books in their bookcase I haven't read. So at least once a month I am going to have a book review of a book I have never read before. It will be good for me. I'm halfway through a new book at the moment. So when I'm done I will post a review.


Knitted Toys

I want to explain the patterns I use for the toys. I use Jean Greenhowe's designs because they are very simple to stitch. I find her instructions are easy to follow and I really love how cute they are.
I'm currently working on a baby hedgehog design. You can see a picture if you press the link below.
I couldn't resist this little hedgehog, it is very cute. I love the fact that everything including the hair is all knitted.

Here's what I have done so far.
This is the body of the hedgehog and one of the shoes (I have 2 made). I've already stuffed the body but haven't got around to the shoes I need to be able to cut cardboard out to create the soles. I have the cardboard so I just have to get around to that part. These patterns are so easy to  follow and really simple to do. but now this is going away for a couple of hours and I'm going to hopefully have a stitching update to show you this afternoon as well :D
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