Sunday, October 5, 2014

Another Dan finish and some Julie stitching too!

Happy October Everyone!

The weather in Nebraska turned chilly Friday so I have been starting my days with some hot chocolate in my favorite mug!  I have to say I love everything about this mug.  The weight of it, the color, the way the handle fits in my hand, the size and lets not forget the saying!  It's perfect!

Dan is off in Kansas City having a Nascar day.  Up to this point he has not really been a fan, he'd watch it some if it happened to be on but he could take it or leave it.   I am however, predicting that after seeing it in person he will be a convert.    *UPDATE:  Didn't even get this posted before he called to say he bought a Danica Patrick hat and she autographed it and he is a huge fan now! Silly predictable man!  LOL!

In my last post I promised to share his latest project.  I didn't get a chance to blog this past week though and now instead of a WIP I get to share his finish!

this will be a gift for a friend of Dans
When he started this project, Dan informed me that he will need a matching "man" fob for all his stitching projects and could I please make him one for this project.  He already has a ship fob which I thought would work just fine but noooo, he wanted a lighthouse fob.   I told him I didn't think there would be a lighthouse charm anywhere in the stores here. We live in Nebraska, why would we need a lighthouse charm?  So what did he do??  The man trotted his happy azz off to the store and came home with a lighthouse charm just to prove me wrong.  I then had no choice but to make him a fob.  If only it would stop there.  But I can see the writing on the wall already as hints are being dropped left and right about how he only has one pair of scissors.  Seriously dude, they don't make "manly" embroidery scissors!!

I am not sure what his next project will be.  He keeps telling me to choose his next piece and I keep telling him to choose his own.  It will be interesting to see what he comes up with.  

I have eased back in to stitching and am doing well.  I take frequent breaks and do my exercises and and so far so good.  I finished Blackbird Designs Midnight Watch last week but forgot to take a picture and I left it at work.  I was almost done with it before my neck went to pieces so I didn't have much left to do and I am beyond thrilled that I finished it.  I had set a goal to finish it  and Tuscan Rose this year and was shooting for before Fall Retreat.  One out of two isn't bad considering.  We're having a Christmas Ornament Exchange at Retreat this Fall and I was thinking I would be able to participate but I was wrong.  I stitched up a piece this week and now I just need to finish it.  I will have to wait to show you that one after retreat though.  And I dug out Tuscan Rose last night and put a few stitches in it but not enough to take a picture.   Which leaves me with showing a couple three pin pillows I stitched well over a year ago and finally put together a couple of weeks ago although I am still debating trims on them.

L- Jeanette Douglas,  R - Blackbird Designs 

 And a Lizzie Kate that I stitched right around Mother's Day last spring but haven't decided what to do with it yet.    

If I remember correctly, I switched up the colors a bit on this one.

Quick update on the kids,

Adam and Marcia are doing well and looking forward to finding a town house when their apt. lease is up.  We've seen quite a bit of Adam the last few months as work has brought him to town and Marcia popped in for a weekend before my surgery.  Both will be here for Christmas this year and we are very excited for that!

Abby is still dating Joe and they are doing well.  Joe just bought a house so Abby is busy trying to figure out how to decorate as Joe says she can do what she wants within reason with the main living areas as long as she doesn't touch "the man cave".   No girly stuff though.  Abby starts her new hours at work this week and is looking forward to seeing more of Joe.  Grandpuppy Lola is a spoiled rotten little ball of fluff but we adore her!

hard to find a pic where one or both of them
aren't making a silly face!  Sorry Joe!
Amy moved to Ohio for grad school in June and is doing well although busy doesn't quite cover it.  She was told grad school would be entirely different from college and they weren't lying but she is thriving and making new friends.   She calls almost every day and fills me in on what is happening but to be honest, most of it goes over my head!!  We miss her constantly and are looking forward to seeing her at Thanksgiving and Christmas.

Amy is on the far right
And with that I will call it a day.  I hope you all are having a great weekend full of stitching!

Take care till next time!


Wednesday, September 24, 2014

More on what Dan did this summer

Happy Hump Day!

I'm so pleased you all were impressed with the Mr's stitching.  I've chosen a wonderful frame for it and am just trying to decide on whether to mat it or not.  I'll share when it's finished.

Some of you might remember a few years back when I had my Achilles Tendon surgery.  To keep me entertained Dan remodeled the kitchen while I was convalesing.  Every day I would make my way downstairs and find that he had worked on one thing or another.  It was almost like Christmas!

Dan did not disappoint this time either!  It all started with the fireplace.  We had a lovely orangey oak surround that neither of us liked and since I had nothing but time to think about things, and the sofa faces the fireplace, it became the pea underneath my mattress until finally I couldn't take it and I begged him to do something.  We put our heads together and decided to paint it the same color as the kitchen cabinets but keep the mantle itself stained, just darker. It took him the entire 3 day 4th of July weekend but he got it finished and we both were thrilled with how it turned out.

Fireplace before

fireplace after
Meanwhile, the upstairs toilet leaked leaving stains on the kitchen ceiling, we got the toilet fixed but the stains remained and they bothered me every time I saw them.  So...he painted the ceiling and since the kitchen ceiling is open to the family room ceiling he had to paint the whole thing.  Dan watches HGTV  and he sees how they always empty out the room completely when they paint and remodel.  However, as much as he will moan and groan about having to work around the furniture the man will not empty the room.  Nope, he'd rather complain the entire time and this time he had to work around me since I was flat out on the sofa 99% of the time.  But in spite of the cursing and stumbling over things he got the ceiling finished and it looks quite spiffy.  But he didn't stop there.  We had been talking about how badly the walls needed painting for at least a year.  It's been over a decade since the last paint job and since it was suede paint we hadn't been able to touch it up because you can't touch up suede paint, it looks worse than the holes and black marks if you do.  But I loved my suede paint and didn't want to paint over it  with regular paint and Ralph Lauren,  the suede paint we liked, had been discontinued many years ago. However, as it so happens, with some research I discovered that Home Depot had just re-introduced Ralph Lauren's suede paint this past June!!! So Dan trotted his happy self to the store and brought home every last paint chip color in the line for me to look at.  And ponder.  And then ponder some more.  And then choose one color only to change my mind the next morning.  And then I would ponder some more.   I finally had it narrowed down to 2 colors, a brown, similar to what is in the kitchen or a sage green.  I went back and forth and back and forth between them so much that time passed.  Lots of time passed.  I had my surgery and still hadn't decided.  In fact it wasn't until I was somewhat mobile after my surgery that I finally chose and then it was at the store when we were getting the paint!  I intended to get the brown paint but at the last second I went with the green and I am so happy I did!!  It looks fantastic!  It looks so fantastic that Dan couldn't stand to keep the carpet in there.  He said he didn't spend all that time painting the suede paint (not the easiest technique) just to keep the ugly carpet when we both really wanted something else.  I wanted a medium colored hardwood and he was leaning more towards a dark laminate wood and in the end I let him have his way and we went with the laminate.  Again it was an interesting process since the man wouldn't completely empty the room.  He emptied the smaller pieces into the kitchen but left the entertainment center, sofa, recliner and the love seat.  He did half the room and then had to shift everything over to do the other half.  It took him over a week to finish and almost as soon as he did he said it was a mistake,  3 dogs, dark floor...lots of upkeep and I can't do any of it yet.  But it does look really nice.   We found an area rug at Lowe's and a clearance ceiling fan at Menards and with the exception of needing new furniture at some point (it's also a decade old and my lounging on it for the last 4 months didn't help it out any) the room is finished and we are both thrilled with it!

Family room before

all the many holes that needed to be filled.

north wall looking towards the kitchen
nw wall

west wall/sw corner

sw wall again
sw corner

se corner.  we removed the top of the entertainment center

south wall

new rug

new laminate floor
I think  we're done doing any further remodeling since it seems like the only time we do it is when I have surgery and quite frankly I don't want to have any more!  I'm sure you can understand that!

Dan has started a new small project that he intends as a gift for Christmas so I will share that with you next time and  will also share some pin pillows I had stitched before things with my neck happened.  

Hope you enjoyed seeing the remodel!  

Take care till next time!


Tuesday, September 16, 2014

All about Dan

Hello again!

Today is all about Dan, the stitching man!  While I was laid up he was able to squeeze in some stitching time in between working 2 jobs, having to cook, clean, do laundry and wait on me hand and foot.  Pretty sure I remember telling you all about the wonderful chart I was able to find at  February Market in Nashville.  Well, he finished the stitching on it but has yet to build his Mi'Lords necessities box to mount it on.  I think he's been a wee bit busy doing other things and box building isn't something you want to do late at night after you tuck your wife in bed!  He'll get to it eventually but in the meantime here is his finished piece.  Sorry no ironing, it's not on my list of approved activities.

This was his first time working on evenweave and his first time working with an overdyed floss.  I think he did a wonderful job!

Once Mi'Lords Necessities was finished he was ready to tackle a huge project.  One I wouldn't have touched with a ten foot pole.  Stitched on 32 ct Fog Linen from PTP using DMC floss he started the stitching in May I believe, since he brought it with him to retreat.  Yep, that's right, my man came to retreat!  The official reason he was there was to help bring the shop out for shop night but once we had things set up the man disappeared.  When I next saw him he was happily ensconced at a table full of women stitching away and laughing with the girls like he'd done it a million times! I wish I had taken a picture of it but I was busy working and didn't think about it.  The girls were very kind to him and even hooked him up with  his own stash that they pulled from the swap table.

Dan's Stash courtesy of the retreaters
There was a reason I am told for each chart they so thoughtfully chose for him but I am not aware of what those thoughts are.  Maybe some of them will chime in on the comments and let us all know.  One of our regulars, Carole, even made him a manly fob to go with his project.

Can you tell what the project is?  
But I digress...I have to give the man kudos, lots and lots of kudos.  Not only was this chart full of confetti stitches but it looks like one of the most boring pieces to stitch ever.  Cool when finished but one wouldn't get a sense of accomplishment as one stitched due to the nature of the chart.  You don't really see the picture until it's all done and you step back.  But I am happy to report that he finished this project this week and I think it's awesome.  Even his back looks good considering it's only his 3rd project.  Are you curious yet as to what it is?

Can I have a drumroll please!

This is a Ronnie Rowe Pen and Ink design called Concordia.  It's one of 3 ships, I'm pretty sure Dan won't stitch the other 2 but who knows?  It could happen.

Started back to work yesterday and stretched my first piece of cross stitch. I think it went pretty well.  I don't seem to have a lot of increased pain because of it anyway.  My arm is a little more sore but I also started PT so it could be that or a combination.  I plan to take it slow and easy, only working 2 hours a day at this time.  Still no stitching, I don't think I could handle having my head down to stretch and to stitch so stitching will keep till I get caught up a bit at work.

Hope you enjoyed hearing about Dan's stitching.  He's pretty proud of himself as he should be!

Take care till next time!


Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Back on my Feet

Wow!  Where does one start after such a long absence?  I'd say at the beginning of the absence but my poor pea brain can't remember that far back!  I do know at the time I was busy preparing for our Spring retreat so perhaps I should begin there in spite of it being old news.

The theme was Voyage of Discovery, based loosely on  Christopher Columbus and other explorer's voyages during the Age of Discovery.   Everyone there received 2 exclusive charts designed just for the occasion.  Dan designed and built the frame to fit either design and these were included in the attendees goody bag.  We offered a class where those that wanted to, could discover how to make a button bracelet.  We had a Rosewood Manor and a Fabric Flair Trunk Show, a swap table, brag table, massages, and door prizes also. All in all I think a good time was had by everyone.

Rosewood Manor Retreat Exclusive
My  Design
Goody Bags

Contents of the goody bags
this years ort container
complete with gold coins
Everyone received a brown paper package tied up with string
 containing the fabric and floss for the project.
all the goodies at check in 
Everyone had to "discover" buried treasure
 by digging in the jewels and coins
the treasure was a bottle containing the chart
Button Bracelet Class
the bracelet when finished
All the stitcher's stitching away!

It wasn't long after retreat that things kinda went to hell in a hand basket.  I had been having problems with my shoulders, neck, lower back since before Christmas. Went to the chiro, multiple times, had a deep tissue massage (never again!!!), went to physical therapy but nothing was making me feel better. Got up one morning found that sitting at the computer was no longer possible, the pain was too bad.  Went to work and spent half the time lying on the floor.  Went to the Dr. who sent me back to physical therapy. By this time (end of May)  I was flat on my back, not going to work, not stitching, not living.  I went back to the Dr. who decided I needed an MRI.  After the MRI, which showed a slight bulge of my C4-5,  the Dr. sent me to a neurosurgeon, by this time if I was upright my right arm had to be on the top of my head and my head had to be tilted to the left as that was the only way I got any pain relief at all.  If I tried to use my right arm to do something it would just flop around, I had no control over it.  Sitting in a chair was no longer an option.  My life was at a standstill.  The wheels of medicine spin ever so slowly anymore so it was August by the time I had seen the neurosurgeon, been told I needed a myelogram, actually had the myelogram and received the results.  While I did have a slight bulge at C4-5, it was actually my C6-7 that was bad and pressing on the nerve which was causing all the pain, loss of control and weakness in my arm.  Surgery was scheduled for August 19th and I am now 3+ weeks out from that.  I'm feeling better although that is a double edged sword because you think you are better than you really are so you have a tendency to over-do and then you pay for it!  I have a ton of restrictions yet, haven't tried stitching, stretching or anything like that at this point.  But I am hopeful that soon I will be able to pick up the reins of my life and move forward.

Think that'll do it for this episode.  My time at the computer is very limited still unless I want a massive headache which I gotta tell ya is a big  NO!

Take care till next time!


Sunday, March 2, 2014

A Happy Dance for His Lordship!

Hear ye Hear ye Hear ye!

M'Lord Dan is proud to proclaim a finish!  A first finish!  A fishy first finish!  Gather 'round all ye faithful followers and rejoice, for today marks an important date in the history of the McConnell Clan.   Despite working two jobs, plus catering to his lady's every wish (it's retreat time and his duties are many) His Lordship has proven the naysayers wrong and is pleased to share with you his very first, but certainly not his last stitchy finish!  Without further ado may I present to you His Lordships Ass Bass! Please forgive the un-ironed state, the ladies maid was busy cleaning the chamber pots and I didn't wish to wait till she was available.

M'Lord wishes to thank everyone for all the words of encouragement provided on my previous post.  He was overwhelmed by your kindness.  He also wishes to impart to those who inquired that he regrets to say he will not be starting his own blog.   One writer in the manor is enough.

Next up for his Lordship will be M'Lords Necessities Box and when asked if he was anxious to start he replied, not only anxious but excited.  I do believe he is turning out to be a true stitcher!

Take care till next time!


Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Thank God I can finally tell you The Dan Story!

Hello Ya'll!

That's my leftover accent from Nashville market coming out.  It seems I always tend to pick it up a little bit when I'm there.  The nice gentleman that rode in the elevator with us pointed out that it wasn't him with the accent but us.  When I asked him if our accent sounds as neat to him as his does to us he replied with a resounding no.  I wasn't quite sure how to take that.  Oh well...moving on.  We had a wonderful time in Nashville and brought back lots of beautiful charts, kits and accessories.  We managed to avoid any bad weather which is quite the feat this winter!  Met up with some folks we've known from previous markets, talked to a ton of designers, took a great class on social media and generally speaking enjoyed ourselves immensely!  Can't wait to do it again at St. Charles.  Our market open house is scheduled for tomorrow from 5:30-8:00p.m. should any of you be in the vicinity and wish to come.  We're supposed to get snow tomorrow so that could put a damper on things but I hope not!

I've been trying to figure out what to blog about for the last couple of weeks.  My life has really become a bit boring as of late.  I either have no money to go thrifting or the weather doesn't cooperate so I can't talk about my recent finds since there hasn't been any.  My stitching has been limited to working on the retreat piece which I can't show you until after retreat in May.  I haven't cleaned my house much less done any decorating to speak of so that topic is out.  The other topic I wished to blog about I couldn't do because I was sworn to secrecy by my husband.  But word has slowly been leaking out so he has now given permission for me to tell you all about it.  Or maybe I finally told him I was done keeping the secret, either way I'm outing him.  So here it is...The Dan Story!  I hope you enjoy it!

Chapter 1

Once upon a time in a basement much like any other basement there was a man cave.  Due to the massive Christmas Village that sucked up 98% of this basement, the man cave was teeny tiny.  Tucked away in a corner at the bottom of the stairs, it held only an old big screen TV, a recliner, a bookcase and a recent gift of an aquarium.  Even those few items were more than the space could comfortably hold, but somehow once the aquarium was set up, the owner of this teeny tiny little man cave, we'll call him Dan since that's his name, started spending more and more time in his little hidey hole.  At first, his wife who/whom? we'll refer to as Julie since that's her name, thought nothing of the amount of time Dan was spending in the basement.  After all, he had his new aquarium to get set up and fish to settle in and make comfortable, root beer colored water to change etc...but as time went on and Dan spent every night down there from the minute supper was over until well after she went to bed, Julie started wondering what she'd done to drive her husband away.  Too many Lifetime and Hallmark movies that eat away at his man card?  Too much talking during T.V. shows?  A general aversion to her company? Don't laugh, it could happen.  Generally puzzled and confused Julie decided she needed to get to the bottom of the problem.  So one night after Dan had gone downstairs to his teeny tiny man cave, she got up from her stitching chair and crept down the stairs to the basement.  Ever so quietly she tip toed down each stair, not knowing what she might find when she reached the bottom.  As she stepped down to the landing she got her first glimpse of the object keeping her dearest love so well occupied every night.  Sucking in a breath of surprise she did a double take.  Was she really seeing what she thought she was seeing?  The old eyes are bad but they don't usually hallucinate.  Blinking rapidly to clear her vision she looked again.  Yep, she really was seeing what she thought she was.  Stepping down the last few steps, Dan was so intent on what he was doing he failed to notice her until Julie said nonchalantly, head cocked to one side,  "what are you doing?"  At the sound of her voice Dan's head snapped up and he said "dammit, I wanted to surprise you!"  To which Julie replied "trust me, I'm surprised!"  There he was sitting in the recliner, her old pink pair of readers perched on the end of his nose, a pair of her good stitching scissors sitting on the arm of the chair and her backup Ott light at his side and what  you ask, was he doing?  The man was stitching!  Cross Stitching!  All on his own.

Thank God that's all it was keeping him occupied at night!   Months earlier, Dan had voiced an interest in learning how to stitch.  Julie, thinking it was just a passing thought in his mind that would soon fade did not jump right on that bandwagon.  But she did show him a Fish kit she had picked up off the swap table at retreat and told him that it might be something he could stitch, never thinking he was serious.  Apparently he was and when Julie didn't take the time to get him started he decided to surprise her and do it on his own.  Taking the stitched piece out of his hands and swiping the readers off his nose she set about looking at  his work.  She could tell where his very first stitches were but after that he seemed to have gotten the hang of things and was doing a surprisingly good job of it!  Handing his stitching back to him and praising him for a good job Julie voiced the thought that she couldn't wait to share this exciting bit of news with everyone!  Dan however, quickly nixed that idea saying he wasn't ready.  He wanted to finish the piece and then bring it to stitch group where he could show it off  and have everyone clap to celebrate his first finish.  So Julie kept his secret but eventually it slipped out in a conversation with Mary Ann and then Connie whom she works with.  Still, she tried to contain the secret for as long as possible.

Chapter 2

It was about this time that Julie was set to take part in the Snooty Stitcher Stitch Along.  Everyone in the group was all aflutter with excitement over the bonus charts Barbara Ana had generously designed for those participating in the stitch along.  Scissor Fobs were being made left, right and center with a parrot charm found at Hobby Lobby.  Julie decided she needed to have a parrot fob for her scissors to go along with the chart so Dan accompanied her to their local Hobby Lobby.  Picking up the charm, Julie then began the process of finding just the right beads to go along with it.  Deciding that he too needed a fob for his scissors, Dan searched for an appropriate fish charm and lo and behold he found one!  Granted it was a rainbow trout and not the bass that he was stitching but a fish is a fish so he handed it to Julie and asked her to pick out the appropriate beads to go with it.  Beads chosen they headed to the check out.  Having learned to make beaded fobs at retreat a year or two prior to this, Julie was sure she could make the fobs with no trouble. Menopause however, has robbed her of a good portion of her memory and she couldn't for the life of her remember how to do it and so she asked her stitcher friend Carole who taught the class at retreat if she would help her make the fob for Dan.  This meant letting Carole in on the secret since she would know there was no way Julie would ever want a fish fob!  Carole of course was more than happy to help and so Dan was able to have a special fob to commemorate his first cross stitch project.

Chapter 3

Weeks went by, long hard weeks trying to keep the secret contained and it was starting to wear on Julie.  She knew it was only a matter of time before word got a round.  Almost daily she would have to bite her lip to keep from saying something that would let Dan's secret out into the world.  Other days she'd have to glare at Connie to keep Connie from saying something to another stitcher at stitching Saturdays.  The clock was ticking down on Dan's secret.  As the days passed the Nashville Needlework Market got closer and closer. Conversations turned to what might be brought home from Market and Dan, die hard stitcher that he had become, asked Julie if she was going to bring him back a chart for his stash.  Thinking back on previous markets, Julie didn't think there was going to be much that would interest him but she said she would look around and see what she could see, never thinking the perfect chart would be waiting for her to find.  

Market arrived and Connie, Mary Ann and Julie set off on their adventure.  Having shared Dan's request with them, all three were on the lookout for something that Dan would like, but none felt confident they would find anything.  And as the day progressed it seemed as though they were right.  Each room they entered was scoured for anything that might interest him but always they exited in disappointment.  As they entered the room that housed Milady's Needle they expected more of the same.  Choosing charts for the shop they looked around one last time to see if anything else caught their eyes.  And there it was!  The perfect chart.  Right out there in the open for all to see...M'Lord's Necessities Box!  How perfect was that!

 In order for you to know how perfect it  really was you need to have the back story.  One of the shows that Dan and Julie like to watch  is Downton Abbey.  Shortly after starting to watch the series, Dan decided he wished to be addressed as Your Lordship or M'Lord.  He wouldn't answer unless you addressed him in such a way. He even asked the girls in the office to call him Your Lordship.  So to facilitate  things everyone at one time or another (except for Judy at his work) will refer to him in that manner.  Even Connie when she went to pick up some boxes from Dan's office was requested to call him M'Lord and did so without question cuz you know, she wanted her boxes.  So now you can see why M'Lord's Necessities Box was the perfect chart for him. The designer, Gloria Moore after hearing the back story even autographed the chart for him! We were giddy with delight!

Arriving home from Market, one of the first things Dan asked of Julie was whether she had been successful in finding him something for his stash.  To which she replied maybe but it would have to wait since it was late and she was tired.  His Lordship agreed that it could wait until the morrow.  The next day, knowing that she couldn't just hand the chart over willy nilly, Julie dug out a silver platter and a pair of white gloves.  Laying the chart in the middle of the platter she then donned the white gloves and presented Dan's gift to him with a bow and a very respectful "for you M'Lord".

And thus ends the story of Dan.  He is still to this day going down to the basement every night and stitching till the wee hours of the morning, determined to finish his fish before starting the next project...bwahahahaha!  How long will that last do you think?  Please leave him a comment of encouragement.  I'll share them with him and I'm sure his lordship will appreciate  them all.

I mentioned Snooty above so here is my progress on her/him? I'm behind due to retreat stitching, market and general winter laziness!

Finally, may I present for your viewing pleasure the Sheep Virtues all framed up and ready to hang!  Thank you all for the many wonderful comments you left on my last post!  I appreciated them all!

Have a wonderful evening and take care till next time!



Sunday, January 12, 2014

A mash up finish to share

Oh my word do I feel gross and disgusting!  Dan and I have been in the basement all day cleaning the craft room and getting Christmas boxes put away.  I planned to sort through crap and throw things away and organize other things so I knew it was going to be at least an all day job if not more.  I also knew it was going to be a dusty dirty job since it hadn't been cleaned since Fall Retreat.  So I didn't bother to shower this morning and now I just feel icky!  Soon as I finish this I am hitting the shower!  I don't care that it's 5 o'clock and I'll get up tomorrow morning and shower again.  I'm one of those people that has to shower and wash their hair every day or I just feel disgusting.  So this will be a quick post but I did want to show you another piece I just finished.

When Little House released their Sheep Virtue series I thought about stitching them up separately and making the pillows out of them as shown.  But I also thought it would be cute to do something different.  I wasn't sure what at the time though.  Then last summer Connie and I were going through charts in the shop pulling things out to put in the 50% off bin and I ran across Country Cottage's Sheep in the Meadow chart.  We still had all 4 of our original order of these charts so into the sale bin they went.  And then I had a thought...what if I did a mother/daughter mash up?  I could use the virtues from Little House and the Sheep in the Meadow in the middle!  Well of course it wasn't that easy.  I had to make some changes to Sheep in
the Meadow so it would fit in the center and I am not a lavender lover so I had to change some colors on it too.  But after working on it for a few days I finally got it all to work mathematically, at least I  hoped.  Math is not my strong suit so the only way I was going to know for sure was to stitch it!  But then I encountered some layout issues with the sheep.  By this time I think there were 6 of the 12 charts released and I discovered my original plan to stitch them in the order they came out wasn't going to work for me without some tweaking here and there.  For instance, some of the sheep in the series were whiter than others.    I didn't want 2 blocks in a row to have white sheep so in some cases I had to switch sheep colors.  I also didn't like the blocks with lavender in them so I changed color on those.  I wanted the blue color to be in all 3 rows so I made the bird house in the bottom row blue.  Nothing major but I did have to think some on how it was going to work before I stitched it and then I never knew what the next block was going to look like either so I had to be prepared to rip some stuff out too.  But in the end I think it looks pretty good.

Sheep in the Meadow by Country Cottage

 I stitched this piece on 40 ct. cocoa fabric using DMC floss.  It measures approximately 15 x 9. OH...and those 4 unsold charts I told you about earlier?  After I had my epiphany I pulled them back out of the sale bin and I am happy to say that they are now all sold.  When people saw me stitching this piece and were asking for my changes I had them purchase the original chart first.   It wouldn't be fair to Country Cottage otherwise!

Now it's off to the shower and then stitching time!  I hope you all had a great weekend and thanks to my followers that are still following and commenting!  I appreciate the loyalty!

Take care till next time!