MAGPIE'S MUMBLINGS

A blog about my interests, which include fabric landscapes and various and assorted other artsy pursuits and sometimes known to contain mumblings of a random nature.

Wednesday, June 16, 2021

Motoring onwards

 I've been plugging away at the little Christmas stitcheries, as you can see from this photo....



Yesterday was a banner, red-letter, exciting day - we had coffee with our friends that we haven't seen for over a year!  We met in a local park and socially distanced and it was wonderful.  Funny how something so small as having a cup of coffee together ends up feeling like the thrill of a lifetime!

- As a general service (and in case you didn't see the comments from last time), Cathy said that she has her blog printed using THIS company.  If you have any other suggestions, feel free to let me know and I'll update this post.

- THIS might be of interest if you're thinking of caring for the environment.

- Have a peek at the creations by THIS amazing artist!

- For those of you who work with water colors, perhaps you might like THIS nifty little travel idea!

Today's quote..."A cup of coffee shared with a friend is happiness tasted and time well spent"

Monday, June 14, 2021

Crosses - of the fun kind

 I'm so much enjoying creating these little stitcheries for the advent calendars.  After a couple of years of deteriorating eyesight due to the cataracts I haven't been able to do any cross stitching and I've certainly missed it.  Here are the latest additions to the collection....


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A question for those of you who are in the know about these things....the question has arisen and my memory is such that I remember someone saying that there's some sort of printing service that will take your entire blog for a year and print it into a book form.  Does anybody know who/how/where that can be done??  Please comment if you do and I'll pass the information along.

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- There's a most interesting post HERE concerning the sheer amount of garbage we manage to produce.  The post itself is interesting but be sure you also check out the comments.  Some interesting ideas and commentary.  Someone suggested that all school-aged children should be taken on a field trip to the local landfill to just see for themselves just how much garbage their community generates.  Sure would be an eye-opener and might make them better stewards of our planet in the future.

- Some of you might find THIS project a fun thing to do with older kids. 

- If you would like to improve (or just play around!) your photography skills, perhaps you might be interested in THIS.  

- And seeing all of THESE was just plain fun!  (be sure to scroll down)  I had to take it one step further with the first artist and checked out her website - go HERE to see more!

- I may have sent you to see the works of THIS artist before but even if I did, they are well worth another look!

Today's quote is from Nido Qubein...."Your present circumstances don't determine where you can go, they merely determine where you start"

Wednesday, June 09, 2021

A few more additions to the collection

 I've been working steadily on the little stitcheries for the advents and have completed a few more (and also re-stitching the offending 'bleeders' from the other day).....

Some of you may be familiar with the children's book 'The Snowman' by Raymond Briggs...


I must admit the book itself is rather underwhelming because there's no story and it's all small pictures....not something that I think would enthrall a 2 year old.  However....the snowman himself is adorable and Sirdar has a pattern!  So....I had to make one for the Christmas box.  I used Bernat Velvet yarn because the original Sirdar yarn is no longer available.  Sooooooo soft and cuddly!!!!


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A short update - I saw the specialist again this morning and the lesion on my tongue is, as he thought, labeled as being 'pre-cancerous'.  I am now part of a new study that will further access my risk for actually developing cancer.  The results of that assessment won't be back until mid-September at which point it will be decided if I will need to be seen by him on a 4xyear basis or whether the risk level is low enough to be looked at once a year.  Either way, I am confident this was caught in time and now we go on to the next step.  Evidently tongue issues such as mine are on the rise, so please - check yourself and if anything doesn't look or feel right, get seen by a professional.  
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- Wouldn't a bowl of THESE look pretty for your fall decor?

- If you have a little girl in your life, perhaps making her one (or more!) of THESE would be special.

- THIS is another of those things that make you want to say 'awwwww' right out loud.

- Have a look at THESE marvelous sculptures!

Today's quote is from Glenn Close..."What mental health needs is more sunlight, more candor, more unashamed conversation"

Monday, June 07, 2021

A needle - in a haystack....or.....

 The Saga of the Red Thread

by Your Intrepid Stitcher

Chapter One

As we enter the sewing studio of your intrepid stitcher  (hereinafter known as IS) we are greeted by many different little piles.  Here a pile of yarn, there a pile of little stitcheries, and over there - yes, over there - we see a pile of plastic boxes chuck full of embroidery flosses.  As the scene unfolds we see our IS stitching merrily away but coming to the realization that if she were a clever person she would damp stretch the little stitcheries as she goes along.  "Yes, a marvelous plan" said she to herself and proceeded to pin out a number of little bits onto her board.  A spritz of water and our IS went back to stitching more.  "This is fun" she thought.  

Chapter Two

Time unfolds.  Drying happens and our IS decided it was time to remove her freshly stretched stitcheries.  But wait!  What's this?  "Oh, no...... (bleep, bleep)...."  Just look at this....



Some of the red embroidery floss has run!!  It's made a huge mess.  And now our not-so-thrilled IS will be re-stitching several of the wee stitcheries.  Good thing she's stubborn!

Chapter Three

As this tale unfolds, the IS is eyeing her plastic box chock full of different shades of red threads and wondering 'Which one is the Culprit".  "Which one needs to be thrown into the Great Wastebasket Collector?"  Our IS is also bemoaning the fact that for once in her stitching life she actually put something AWAY as she went and therefore the offending culprit is now merrily sticking their tongue out at her and saying 'catch me, if you can'.

THE END

Epilogue: 

As this story goes to press, your IS is pleased to inform you that the offending stitcheries have been re-stitched....with non bleeding thread AND the little blighter has been banished to the Wastebasket Collector.


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- have a look at the gallery HERE.  

- THIS is a really cute design and could use some scraps from your stash - and would make great gifts too (or used as the gift bag with something else tucked inside).

- Have a peek at the work done by THIS amazing artist.

Today your quote is courtesy of Winston Churchill... "Success is not final, failure is not fatal.  It is the courage to continue that counts"

Friday, June 04, 2021

A box of inspiration and progress

 This box of yarn-y goodness appeared in the mail and will evolve into two more mile-a-minute afghans at some point between now and Christmas.....



And, there's been a little more progress on the Christmas stitcheries too....


You will note that I'm doing two of each 'theme', but each of them is different from the other.

- Not that we adults would know this for a fact (ahem) but the kids in your life that enjoy those Freeze Pops would probably benefit from some of THESE.  

- Some of THESE would be fun for summer use.

- I've been on the lookout for the directions to make THESE for quite awhile.  Perfect addition to tuck inside a letter to our grandsons!

- Have a look at THESE and be prepared for an involuntary 'awwwww'.

- If there's a nurse or a doctor in your life, they might appreciate a thank you in the form of one of THESE.  

Today's quote from C. Beaudin Hamada:  "The happiest people don't have the best of everything.  They just make the best of everything.  Live simply, care deeply, speak kindly, love generously and leave the rest to God"

Wednesday, June 02, 2021

More, and a lack

 Over the past couple of days I completed another two little stitcheries for the advents, as you can see...

I blinked and miscounted the number of stitches so I'll be redoing the Mrs. Santa on the right so she's centered.  Oops.

This time I'm not giving you any links because I haven't had the time to search for any (I know, be still your beating hearts.  Do try to curtail your disappointment).  BUT - instead of that how about a few photos from our walk along the river?  For those of you who don't know, our apartment building overlooks the local river and there's a nice walkway all the way from here to the downtown core.  These things caught my eye...







These are the locks and on the left (out of frame) is where the boats go through.




A little snapping turtle sunning himself on the rocks




The Old Mill that burned many years ago and now is a 'Heritage' site (some would say eyesore).  I maintain it should be revamped as a restaurant on the lower level, the Art Gallery on the middle level, and artist studios/shops on the upper.  Of course the town fathers don't agree with my opinion!



And, finally, some fun mail!  


These will be used in the Advent calendar creation when I get to that point.





Today's quote is from David Russell..."The hardest thing in life is to know which bridge to cross and which to burn"

Monday, May 31, 2021

More for the Christmas box and little stitcheries

 Over the weekend I completed knitting another pair of socks that are destined for the Christmas box...


And, a few more little stitcheries for the advent calendars were created too...


- THIS is for those of you who, unlike me, love the scent of lavender.  I like it, but my sneezing mechanism certainly doesn't!  Right now I'm dying to snuffle deeply of lilacs but I know better!

- Like many of us you are likely to have lots of yarn scraps and perhaps THIS might be a great use for some of them.

- Have a look through the galleries of THIS amazing artist!

- And read THIS article and then go and visit his galleries HERE to see more.  Amazing work!

Today's quote/poem is from Laura Ding-Edwards...

The Mountain

If the mountain seems too big today
then climb a hill instead.
If the morning brings you sadness
it's ok to stay in bed.
If the day ahead weighs heavy
and your plans feel like a curse,
there's no shame in rearranging,
don't make yourself feel worse.
If a shower stings like needles
and a bath feels like you'll drown,
if you haven't washed your hair for days,
don't throw away your crown.
A day is not a lifetime,
a rest is not defeat,
don't think of it as failure,
just a quiet, kind retreat.
It's ok to take a moment
from an anxious, fractured mind,
the world will not stop turning
while you get realigned.
The mountain will still be there
when you want to try again, 
you can climb it in your own time,
just love yourself 'til then.