Saturday, October 22, 2016

What I've Been Up To

It's Saturday afternoon and I was sitting in my reading chair with my book for the Victober reading challenge "The Picture of Dorian Gray" by Oscar Wilde when suddenly I started feeling a little guilty.
At the beginning of 2016 I promised myself to give this blog a chance for another year, with a post at least once a month.
My last post was in August and all it did was show my gorgeous copy of Winnie the Pooh and the announcement that I was taking part in the Hundred Acre Read Along.

So here goes. This is what I have been up to.

I have made a lot of progress on "The Bookshop" and still enjoying every stitch.
You may remember I was stitching this for our son's birthday in 2015. When it wasn't finished then I figured his birthday in 2016 would be no problem.
Well, his birthday was at the end of August and still I'm not finished. However I now have less that 6000 X's to make and I'm hopeful that I will have it completed by the end of the year.
Wouldn't that be a grand way to end 2016?

I have been meeting some friends to sit and chat as well as knit, crochet etc.
Most of the women knit on a round needle. This is something I had never done but when I saw this pattern I realized it would be easier on a round needle as the entire sweater is knit in one piece.
My friend Vicki suggested I borrow one of her round needles to see whether or not I liked the experience.
So, with a skein of With Love 'Waterlily' 100% acrylic by Red Heart I knit this little sweater for my granddaughter's baby doll (actually her mama's baby doll Kimmy).
The pattern is called "In Threes" and is by Kelly Herdrich.

Since knitting the sweater on round needles was quite a success I decided to buy some myself and knit a scarf.
Now you are looking at the picture and thinking that these do not look like round needles. Right you are!
I figured it would be easier to start the pattern on straight needles and then to change to round needles once I had a good start.
I knit about 20 rows (four patterns) and transferred. On the next row I immediately made a mistake and had the hardest time correcting it.
So, long story short, I pulled it out and started over again on straight needles. I'm much happier with them on this project.
The pattern is "Seiren" by Roko and looks more difficult than it is.
I am knitting with Loops & Threads Woolike 'Denim Blue' yarn which is 85% acrylic and 15% nylon.

Here is the pattern up close.

While we were still living in Las Vegas I bought several Halloween panels.
Now that I have a new sewing machine and have taken a quilting course it is time to do something with them.
So I bought some cute polka dotted fabric for the borders & backing and got to work.
Sewing those borders on was no problem. Getting the layers laid out and pinned no problem.
But now I'm at the point in this project which is giving me a lot of headaches - the kind you give yourself because you are to anxious about what you are doing, keep on putting it off and then worry even more that you are putting it off till tomorrow.
I really have to finish it at the beginning of next week or I'll just put it away until Halloween 2017 with exactly the same feelings I am having now.

For November I've signed up for Non-fiction November #NonfictionNovember2016 which is being hosted by Olive  and Gemma.
I have chosen my books for the four categories.

1. New - "Whatever You Do, Don't Run" by Peter Allison

Whatever You Do, Don't Run: True Tales of a Botswana Safari Guide
My cover looks completely different as I am reading it in Dutch (bought for 1 eruo at Zeeman a few years ago when we were visiting The Netherlands under the title "Voor de Leeuwen".

2. Controversial - "Alive" by Piers Paul Read

Alive: The Story of the Andes Survivors

3. Important- "Infidel" by Ayaan Hirsi Ali


4. Fascinating - "The Face of Tutankhamun" by Christopher Frayling


I will also be taking part in  Lesley's  "readkidslit in November"
Although I don't know how many children's books I'll be able to fit in with the other challenge I will do what I can and will probably start with Roald Dahl's "Matilda".

Until next time,

Saturday, August 27, 2016

Hundred Acre Read Along

My 75 year anniversary edition 
Received from my children Christmas 2001

For all my reading friends 
and all the Winnie the Pooh fans out there 
this is a special announcement regarding the Hundred Acre Read Along 
which is being organized by Lesley.

You have heard me speaking about Lesley before as she is one of my favorite booktubers.

This morning Lesley invited us
to celebrate the 90th anniversary of the publication of Milne's first book
by joining a read along from September 14 through October 14.

and let her tell you all about the
 Hundred Acre Read Along.

Saturday, July 30, 2016

End of July update

Since today is July 30 and I can't see too many new stitching and reading activities occurring within the next 36 hours now seems like a good time to post my end of July update.

After another mini marathon half way through July this is where The Bookshop stands.
I love it more every time I look at it. 

Since then I have been working on The Bookshop on and off  but not enough to make a big difference.

I have been reading when I can and am currently reading:

I Capture the Castle is my buddy read with Brenda H.

Brenda & I have also started selecting our books for a "26 in 2017" reading challenge.
We will be reading 20 books (each choosing our own 20) using categories listed in the original 2015 challenge and 6 children's books (chosen together.
The original challenge can be found here:


Enjoy the rest of your summer.
Is anyone planning an Olympics stitching marathon next month?

Monday, July 04, 2016

Happy 4th of July

Happy 4th of July

DH's uncle Sam nutcrackers on  my Americana quilt top.

On June 30 I held a Bookshop marathon. The purpose was to complete the top of the piece.
It was a very long day but at 12:50 am on July 3 I reached my goal.

I hope to have The Bookshop completed by August 28.

Friday, June 10, 2016

BookTube and a small haul

Late last month I discovered BookTube.
I really don't remember how I came across but it has led me to a world filled with people who are just as crazy about books and reading as I am.

During the past month I have watched many episodes produced by a variety of Book-Tubers.
They are all wonderful but my absolute favorite to date is Wordsofabookreader.
She has huge book collection, a wonderful voice and so much great information.
Lesley you are the best!

This week I made a mini-book haul which I want to share.

Although I prefer new books I do check a local second hand book store regularly to see what they have in excellent/good condition.

Monday I found an almost new copy of Barbara Kingsolver's "Flight Behavior which we will be reading for our August bookclub get-together and like-new paperback "Maisie Dobbs" by Jacqueline Winspear.

Yesterday I went to Daytona Beach and found a few new books.

First a paperback edition of "The Old Man and the Sea" by Ernest Hemingway.
After reading "The Paris Wife" by Paula McClain I decided I really must read Hemingway's books.
I already owned "The Sun Also Rises" so that was my first real taste of Hemingway. I loved it.
Now I have the novella for which he won the Pulitzer Prize in 1953.
Am I the only Floridian who has never read it?

My second buy yesterday was truly my favorite of the week.
I found a Heritage Classic hardback copy of "The Hundred and One Dalmatians" by Dodie Smith.
This book is gorgeous, with a cloth spine, lovely end papers with white Heritage trees on a light blue/gray background and a ribbon bookmark.
Oh my, lucky me.

Have a great weekend.

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

More May Finishes

Since the end of the month is just around the corner it is time to show you the rest of my May finishes.
Looking back on the month I feel I've accomplished quite a bit.

First up the 4th of July quilt.
I appliqued the cornerstones and added the borders.

Here is a clearer picture of the attached cornerstones.

It was quite an experience appliqueing them and then attaching them to the top and bottom border before attaching these borders to the rest of the quilt top.
Next week we will learn how to sandwich and quilt.

On June 17 our granddaughter turns four. 
Like most girls her age she is a big fan of Elsa from Frozen so granny made her an Elsa cape.
Please be proud of me as although the finished project looks like it could be stitched within an hour this is not the case.
The organza is horrible to work with. It slips and slides every which way and several times I didn't pin enough or watch the material closely enough and found myself frogging.
The picture does not do it proper justice as the satin blanket binding I used shows up much more than the organza.
There was glitter everywhere when I was finished and I will not be using the rest of the organza. Done with it!!

Last but not least a knit scarf for a local charity group.
It was knit with "Autumn Red" Simply Soft by Caron on 5 mm needles.
The scarf is 64 inches long.

For my birthday last week my children and grandchildren spoiled me with five new books. 
All my life whenever I was asked what I wanted for my birthday my answer was "BOOKS"!
They are truly and obsession. I can just sit and lovingly gaze at my wonderful collection.

I received:
"The Little Paris Bookshop" Nina George
"A Man Called Ove" Fredrik Backman
"The Summer Queen" Elizabeth Chadwick
"The Signature of All Things" Elizabeth Gilbert
"Big Magic" Elizabeth Gilbert

Oh my, how well DS and DD know me. :)

Although I didn't have time this month to read as many books as I usually do I will share my favorite read of the past month:


Amy Tan's book from 1991 has been sitting on my shelf for a few years just waiting to be read.
I loved it!

and the book I am currently reading:

This is the first in the "Annie's Attic Mysteries" series which was written by various authors.
It is a sweet story and I am sure I will read some of the sequels.

Well friends that just about sums it up for the month of May.
I hope you are all well and enjoying life.

Thursday, May 12, 2016

The Bookshop

Just finished page 7.

The Bookshop will go back to being my evening project for a while.

Tomorrow the sewing machine is coming out and I'll be working on the quilt tops every afternoon until they are completed.