How can it be the end of February already? I don't know, but I'm more than happy to bid it "adieu!" Lots of gray and dreary days here... March certainly has to be better, doesn't it? This week was another busy one with my six-month dental appointment (thank goodness I had no cavities this time!) and an informational meeting about Medicare thrown into the mix. I have to sign up for Medicare by April 16th so time is getting short. I'm slowly beginning to understand it more, but any helpful advice would be much appreciated by those of you "over-65ers!" My husband and I are leaning toward signing up for a Medicare Advantage plan--just need to pick the one that best suits us at this stage in our lives. I was relieved to hear that these plans can be changed each year during certain months--doesn't make it quite so stressful in making our selection. I feel like I'm a reasonably intelligent person, but this Medicare process has made me feel really dumb. Thank goodness, I have my stitching to relieve the stress, right?
That "big" (for me, anyway!) finish that I've mentioned in previous posts is finally done and I love it! May I present "Winter's Wisdom" by Cottage Garden Samplings. Oh, what a delight to stitch (although those pine cones about made my eyes permanently cross!). I'm using 40 ct. pearl gray Newcastle for this series and stitching each one individually. The suggested overdyed threads were used, except I painted the door on the teeny house a teal blue color.
|"Winter's Wisdom" all finished up!|
|The "argyle forest" is so unique, isn't it?|
|The tiny houses in this series are so sweet... I changed the door color to the teal blue found in the trees.|
|I saved the darling birds to stitch until last--these are Gold-Crowned Kinglets, which I've never seen. Have any of you?|
|The colors in this piece perfectly capture the mood of winter!|
This is the second of the series that I've stitched... Last year brought "Forever & Ever" (which you can read about in this post
) with the cardinal couple. I'm planning on stitching each of them on the same linen, framing them individually, and hanging them together.
|Forever & Ever finished in February 2019|
So, how many of the Songbird's Garden series will I stitch? Probably six or eight of the dozen offered... I need to step up my stitching if I want to have them hung in my home before I'm ancient, though, so I've decided to attempt to stitch two or three each year. For the next one, I'm trying to decide between these three. Which one do you think I should start next: Faith, Gratitude, or Simplicity? I just love the colors Vinniey (the designer) chose for her Songbird's Garden Series and I can't say enough about the high quality of her charts. Well done all around!
|Help me decide which one to stitch next!|In other stitching news
--I just received my latest blog book back from the publisher. Every two years I order a new book created through the blog2print.com
site. I suggest signing up for emails as they often send you discount codes for your blog book printing. This year, I had one for an amazing 60% off!
The book arrived quickly and I'm so enjoying reading through the memories of the years I had printed (2017-2018). Yes, I can read it online, but there is still something so comforting about a printed book--especially when it contains your own words, photos, and recollections.
Here are some photos of my latest book's cover and a few inside pages (not the best photos--as I mentioned above: gray and dreary weather here!).
|My newest blog book--all 329 pages of it!|
|My only complaint is that the captions are not directly under the photos. (But, I knew that would happen before I ordered the book).|
|The print is clear and easy to read and the color on the photos is quite good.|
|I especially like having the memories of our trips in book form. Here is a portion of my post on our "Hike From Hell" from our Panama trip in 2018. |
|And here are all five of the blog books of my "Stitching Dreams" journey dating back to 2009. As I mentioned, I order two years per book so at the end of this year, I'll order the book for 2019-2020. |
There were just a few entries for my last giveaway and the winner of the cute snowman and bunny chart is...
Carol Is Sewbizzy
|Carol Is Sewbizzy is the winner!|
Congratulations, Carol! Please send me your mailing address and I will get this mailed out to you as soon as possible. (My email is in my sidebar under "A Bit About Me.) Thank you to all who entered. And please keep an eye on this space for future giveaways!
GETTING TO KNOW YOU... It was so much fun reading your answers to my question on my last post about how long you spend stitching each day! I have often said that blogging is a one-way street--you know a lot about me, but I know little about most of you. So, in an attempt to rectify that, I'm beginning a new little feature called "Getting To Know You." On each post I will pose two simple questions--and I'd love to hear your answers in an effort to get to know you. This is just a fun way to get to know each other a bit better--participate or not. It is up to you! I'll answer the given questions for all of you, too...
1) What is one small living thing that you are scared of? For me--it's bats! I am absolutely terrified of those beady-eyed flying things. Having grown up in an old house with bats in our attic (who sometimes made their way down to our bedrooms and living areas), left me with a definite fear of them. Watching my dad try to chase them out of the house with a tennis racket that he kept near his bed just for that purpose is a memory I'll never forget!
2) What is one healthy food you couldn't live without? For me--it's nuts! I love, love, love nuts of any kind--walnuts, pistachios, pecans, almonds, cashews (well not Brazil nuts or hazelnuts so much!). I often start my day with a small handful of walnuts or pecans. I add them to granola, oatmeal, yogurt--so many things... Can't imagine life without them!
I'll leave you with a few photos of my feathered friends (and one very unwanted visitor) at our bird feeder last week. I guess you can tell from this post--I love birds, too!
|A Tufted Titmouse visiting the feeder right outside my kitchen window. As you can see our snow disappeared almost overnight!|
|This teeny chickadee is carrying a sunflower seed larger than his beak! They are among my favorite visitors each day--so sweet and delicate.|
|We had to move the bird feeder due to raccoons repeatedly knocking it down at night and, unfortunately, the squirrels have discovered just how easy it is now to jump onto the window ledge, bypass the cone-shaped squirrel buffer, and leap from the pole to the feeder.|
|There's the little devil enjoying the birds' lunch!|
I want to wish a warm welcome to my new readers--so glad you've joined us! As always, a special thank you to those who take the time to comment. There were over 500 views of my previous post, but very few comments compared to the "good old days." It does get discouraging, at times... I'll be honest with you. So, to those of you who comment--I truly thank you! Wishing each of you a happy, healthy month of March ahead--I'm counting the days until we turn the clocks ahead and have more daylight hours! Yippee!! Bye for now...