Sunday, August 31, 2014

Last Move on Scroll Bars!

I am so excited!  Last night I made the final move forward of this project on my scroll bars.  The next move will be off the bars as it will be done.  I've stitched the house at the top right of the project since this photo last night.  

This is Harvest Time by Prairie Schooler.  I have stitched it on a piece of 28 count Jobelan in Copper Penny.  I've used the called for colors except for the church.  The called for color was the exact same as the base color of my fabric.  It felt like "Beauty in Simplicity" by Blue Ribbon Designs all over again.  I went through 14 colors when stitching the house until I found one that suited me on the fabric I chose.  Thankfully I only went through 6 changes of colors on the church before I found a keeper.

I've already picked out my next project.  Again keeping to my goal of trying to stitch Prairie Schooler designs from my stash.  I will be stitching July (my birth month) on 32 count Lambswool.  I'm doing something a bit different on this one which is stitching it using Hand Dyed Fibers Premium Silks.  You can see my project box of spools ready to go.  I think I have done a pretty good job of matching colors to the called for DMC.  I chose to do this as I stitch so much "prettier" with 1 thread and know Premium provides great coverage on 32 count with 1 thread.  I will post a list of my conversions on one of my future posts.

Also in keeping with my goals this year of stitching on my projects in the works,  I have pulled out this large project.  I started Jan Houtman's Flower Bouquet in Green several years ago.  It is one I would really like to complete so have decided to keep it by my chair and work on it periodically while I stitch my other projects.  I've decided if I dedicate myself to spending just 15 minutes a day on it I will complete it much sooner than if it just continues to sit in the cupboard.  It may not get done this year but am hopeful it will at least get done.  The pattern has 35 pages and I am just a few stitches from completing page 2 of the pattern.
I am stitching it on a piece of 25 count Jobelan and you can see it took an entire 1/2 yard of it for this project.  I am using the called for DMC colors.  I will keep you posted on my progress.
On Wednesday night we participated in a Car Show at a local church here in town.  They have a big festival to kick off their Fall schedule of classes, etc at the church.  This is a picture of my husband and son next to a 1929 Lincoln.  It was an amazing vehicle as even the interior is all original.  I wouldn't mind owning that car.

In addition to the car show, inflatables for the kids, a dunk tank, food and hay rides there was a hot air balloon doing a nite glo.  We met some wonderful new people and ran into someone I grew up with.  It was a fun evening for the family!
For those doubters out there - I really do get to drive the super fast Camaro!
Husband's brother is here visiting for a long weekend and I got them to pose for a couple of pictures with this piece of artwork that will be moving on soon!
Now I'm off to finishing making the homemade ice cream using the recipe handed down through our family for generations.  YUMMY!

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Catching Up!

  It seems like it has been forever since I've had the time or energy to sit down and catch up with what I've been up to over the last month.  It seems the Iowa State Fair (11 days),  my son's birthday, a couple of car shows, evening rides in the Camaro, doctor's appointments, exercise, getting ready for an out of state visitor tomorrow, and some time with my friends has kept me pretty busy. 

Here are some pictures I took this month.    The first is a hummingbird moth.  It seems to like my tall garden phlox in the front and hung around for about 30 minutes while I was waiting for my son's bus to get home.  I usually sit out on the front porch reading but went back in for my camera.  I got some really nice pictures.
As always, I can't resist taking pictures of the moon.  I took this one in the morning as the sun was coming up.  I just like the color of the sky and how you can be more creative with your photos when taking morning shots of the moon.  At least until I learn to take better night photos.

I spent quite a lot of time this summer wondering where these hornets that were around my flowers were making their home this summer.  Checked eaves, under the upstairs deck, etc. looking for their home this year only to be sitting on the swing on the upper deck one evening to spot it 40 feet up in the tree at the back of the yard.  It is quite large (about the size of a basketball) and shaped like a strawberry.  I was either very brave or very stupid to get underneath it to take some photos.  It is an amazing structure.  It is too far up for us to do anything about it.  Hopefully this winter we will have a heavy snowfall that will knock it out of the tree.

The Iowa State Fair was very enjoyable this year as the temperatures were in the 80's most days.  We managed to get out there on 3 occasions and saw something different each time we went.  Here are some photos of the Fair through my lens - and yes I do love ferris wheels.

 Here is Keith showing off our 3rd purchased plaque with donation going to the Blue Ribbon Foundation to maintain and improve the fairgrounds.
1st Place - Tabletopper/Breadcloth/Napkin
1st Place - Verse/Motto

2nd Place - Pic Under 15"
2nd Place - Afghan
3rd Place - Pillow

4th Place - Pic Under 15" Linen

4th Place - Sampler
I entered 7 items in Fabric and Threads this year and was stunned to have been awarded 7 ribbons.  I was equally thrilled that they were all 4th place and higher.  No honorable mentions this year so feel like I've elevated my stitching.  I was looking forward to reading the judges comments as they always help me to improve my stitching.  All very positive but on the pieces using 2 strands of floss over 2 threads I seem to have a tension problem at times.  I would agree with this comment which is probably why I prefer to stitch 1 strand of floss over 1 on 25 count.  I chose to stitch on larger count fabric this year with 2 strands so I could have some larger pieces to put into the Fair.  I am already thinking of how to improve in this area so I can still do some larger pieces on 28 or 32 count for next year and suggestions on how I can improve my technique are always welcome.
This lovely quilt was entered by my friend, Kathy.

This was my personal favorite on display.

This one just made me LOL!  So creative.

I'm thinking of branching out next year and trying this category.  Everyone is given the same fabric and you design a quilt block and enter it.  They take all the quilt blocks and make them into the quilt that is raffled away each year.

Who knew you could crochet an owl?!

Attended a few horse shows.

Saw all things made of butter.  The usual cow and this year they did a nod to the 25th Anniversary of the movie Field of Dreams.  You know the famous line "Is this heaven?   No it is Iowa!"  I still have my t-shirt purchased at the ISF the year the movie came out.

Enjoyed the architecture of the 100+ year old buildings.

Was amazed at how a cupcake could be decorated in such detail.

Always fun to see all the produce that has been entered and judged.  Congratulations to family friend, Tim for his 2nd place in grapes.

This is the Biggest Bull named Big Daddy weighing in at 3,012 pounds.

This is the Biggest Boar named Peabody weighing in at 1,273 pounds.

On Veteran's Day there was a parade as is tradition.

Always love to go the last day after the Dahlias have been judged.  Tables of beautiful blooms.

My guys enjoying their favorite ride - the Sky Glyder!  Just couldn't resist the photo of the bottoms of their feet as they went overhead.

As I said, I do love a ferris wheel.

Always fun to hear the screams of those on these 2 rides.  

The last thing we saw before leaving on the last day was the majestic Clydesdale horses.  I think they are the most magnificent animals and it is always a thrill to see them.

 I've taken to walking the trail put into the park last year behind my house.  It is such a peaceful place to walk.  I've only run into 2 people on the 3 times I've walked it this week.  I've actually seen more deer than people.  This covered bridge was built around 1875.  It was in 2 previous locations before Parks & Recreation purchased for $1 in the 60's and located it where it is now.
I'm am just about to finish Harvest Time by Prairie Schooler and can't wait to take it for framing.  I have in the back of my mind a couple of frames I think would look great.  As always, will have to wait until frame corner piece and stitched piece are together to decide.

By the way I wonder if any of the rest of you have your blogs make into bound books?  It is something I started doing back in 2011 after losing my blog on 2 occasions.  I so enjoy going back at different times of the year looking to see what we were doing as a family or what I was creating back then.  I also find it a great reference for when I want to use the same fibers or fabric from a previous project.  It is one of the reasons I try to include this information in my blog so I have an easy reference for future projects.

Looking forward to some stitching over the long holiday weekend!