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.

Friday, May 29, 2020

Whipping and cross eye-edness

And yes, before you tell me I do know that 'eye-edness' isn't in the dictionary but in this case it fits!  First of all, I'll show you a photo of what's been happening on the landscape....

Do you see the fence in the foreground?  Firstly, I stitched the wire part with the machine using a grey thread but it wasn't the colour or the texture I peruse of my embroidery flosses yielded one that rather looked (at least to me!) that it might represent a rusty fence.  One strand of floss - and I undertook to whip.  Every.  Single. Machine. Stitch. On. That. blankety blank. Fence.  Over 5 hours later and I'm about half done.  

Am I crazy?
Am I obsessed?
(don't answer that)
But is it worth it?
Oh yeah!

(and what's worse - trying to actually SEE
those little stitches while my eyes are percolating
cataracts - just another level of idiocy!)

Today's quote...."If you want to know how rich you are, find out how many things you have that money cannot buy"

Wednesday, May 27, 2020

Here we go again!

This morning I received a notification from Blog-grrrrrrr that they're changing things.  Again.  Why mess with something that's working....and telling us it's going to be 'improved' and oh so much 'better'.  Guess they don't subscribe to the old adage that if it ain't broke don't fix it!!  I'm testing it out right now so we'll see.  By the way it appears all of us will be over to the new format by sometime in June.    As of this moment it doesn't look TOO bad although I had a hard time figuring out how to continue working on this post (I add things to it as I come across them and then just finish it off prior to hitting 'publish').  I finally pushed the right button, but now darned if I can remember which one it was!!  I also prefer working with large print now (growing cataracts means I can't see as well as I used to) and it flatly refuses to give it to me.  Who knows what it will appear like when I do hit publish!

Okay - now THAT particular rant is over, how about an updated view of the landscape?  Here goes.....

Well, that was an interesting experiment in frustration!  Actually it didn't cause me too much angst to figure it out, but from what I can see at this moment I no longer have the option to embiggen the photo and I also can't caption it.  Hmmm.  Oh well, you can simply click on the picture to embiggen it.  I think.  I hope.  (will somebody let me know please??)

Today's quote (appropriate perhaps?)....."Don't be afraid of change.  You may end up losing something good, but you will probably end up gaining something better"

Stay safe. Stay well.

Okay - hitting publish.....fingers crossed.....
If you don't hear from me, you'll know the entire thing blew up.

Monday, May 25, 2020

A little more

There's been a little more progress on the landscape - hard to tell from the photo but there's pretty much two days of work gone into this since you last saw it.  

It's now ready to start quilting so hopefully that will happen today - or at least partially. 

Friday, May 22, 2020

A progress report

I finally got back to putting a few hours in to the latest landscape and this is the result...

It's pretty much at the stage when I'm not sure whether to scuttle it and start over.  I know from experience now that I need to just work through it and (hopefully!) it will come out okay in the end.  Time will tell!

Today's quote is from Nikita Gil...."Be the kind of person who is not afraid to ask someone if they are okay twice if they say they are, but look like they are not.  Be the kind of person who smiles at people even if they don't smile back.  Be the kind of person you wished for when no one was there for you.  Be the kind of person who is brave enough to stand alone in a crowd for what is right.  Be that person because we need more people like that in the world.  Be that person because people like that are rarer than the rarest diamonds and gold"

Be safe. Be well.

Wednesday, May 20, 2020

Another little finish

I had fun making this little fellow for our grandson and it's now in the mail heading out to live with him....

I used Paton's Canadiana yarn and the pattern came from HERE.  

I also finished making a little crocheted Harry Potter 'scarf' bookmark for our oldest grandson and of course put it in the mail before remembering to take a picture!  I had the appropriate coloured crochet cotton in my stash so it was a simple make.  That pattern can be found HERE.  I did the red and yellow version and worked it flat and then seamed it.  

Monday, May 18, 2020

A finish!

Yes, a finish, but not of my making!  Resident Chef has been working on this jigsaw puzzle for nearly two months and there was a resounding cheer when he completed it over the weekend.  It is THE hardest puzzle he has ever done, not because the picture itself is that difficult but the pieces themselves are all different  He would search and search for a certain-shaped piece and then discover it was actually two, or sometimes even three.  More than once he wanted to scuttle the entire thing but the end result was worth it....

He, being of diabolical mind, is now mailing it to my aunt for her to struggle  have fun with.  I wonder if she'll still be speaking to him afterwards?!!

Today's quote is from Bill Murray..."So, if we lie to the government it's a felony.  But if they lie to us, it's politics"

Stay safe.  Stay well.

Friday, May 15, 2020

For grandson #3

Used up some more of my scrap yarn to make a wee sweater for our #3 grandson....some of the colours are the same as the sweater I just made for his older brother....

The pattern is the same as the sweater I posted about a couple of days ago and the yarn is also Paton's Canadiana.  I know it's going to be too large for him to wear for a little while but perhaps by next winter it will be perfect.  

And....the mailman brought this.....

Enough for two pairs of socks (on the left);  upper middle is Scrubby yarn to make some dish scrubbers (perhaps for the Christmas box);  the green on the right is for a sweater for #1 grandson; and the orange....well, you're just going to have to wait and see what I'm making!.

Today the quote is from Desmond Tutu..."Do your little bit of good where you are; it's those little bits of good put together that overwhelm the world"

Stay safe. Stay well.

Wednesday, May 13, 2020

A new beginning - finally

Never let it be said that I don't procrastinate!  Sort of.'s a start at the next landscape....

The past few days I've been at odds it seems - perhaps this enforced stay-at-home-ism is getting to me.  Who knows, but I don't seem to have been able to settle into doing any one thing and have spent FAR too much time engrossed in the computer.  It's still cool here, with snow flurries over the past weekend, so I'm more than ready for spring.  This afternoon the plan is to do some more on this landscape and see where it goes.  

Today's quote is from Christine Caine..."Sometimes when you're in a dark place you think you've been buried, but you've actually been planted"

Monday, May 11, 2020

Well, the vote count is in and it 
seems that Option #2 is the 
clear winner.
So....ever a slave to my
readers, I will change my ways.
Please remind me if I happen to forget!
As I mentioned the other day I finished knitting a sweater for our #2 grandson using some of my stash yarn and this is the result...

The pattern is a paid one  -   'Wonder Years' by Elizabeth Smith Knits and can be found HERE.    I used Paton's Canadiana yarn for most of it, but I think the textured/patterned one is Vanna's Choice.  I'm using the same pattern to make one for  #3 grandson (the pattern ranges from size 2T up to 8-10 years) and am currently playing yarn chicken.  Fingers crossed I have enough!

Today's quote..."Only when normal things are not normal anymore do we realize how special normal things are"

Friday, May 08, 2020

A fore...and an aft....

Sometimes necessity is the mother of invention (or maybe desperation?).  As most of you know we live in a four story apartment building and have a small balcony which has a solid metal 'railing'.  Several years ago the building management decided to paint the outside of the building which included the balconies.  Unfortunately the day they chose to paint our balcony it was snowing and raining (there was at least a couple of inches of snow on the upper part of the railing).  Compounding that, they didn't use proper metal paint.  So of course it all started peeling.  Dreadfully.  Last spring we put in a work order for a re-painting and just knowing that they would be along 'any day' to do the job we didn't put any plants out  nor did we set up our chairs so we could sit out there.  Summer came.  And went.  No paint.  So....before the virus hit another work order went in for THIS year.  Good luck with that happening now. 

This is the peeling paint mess we've been looking at.  The dark brown is the 'new' paint and beneath that there are at least two more layers of other paint...all in varying degrees of peel.

Not at all appealing!

So, Resident Chef and I put our thinking caps on and ordered (via curb-side pickup) a 4'x15' canvas painter's drop cloth and three expandable tension curtain rods.  I cut the drop cloth into three sections, did some hemming, and voila....

At least it's not quite so hurtful to the eyes.  The chairs are set up and now we wait for warmer weather.  There will be several planters with tomatoes and some herbs added later on.

A further note regarding the discussion about ease-of-use for the links here at Magpie's Mumblings and it seems the general consensus is that the current system seems to be working for most.  All you need to do, in order to come back here after peeking at one of the links, is to simply click on your 'back' arrow button (which should appear on the upper left of your computer screen).  If you click on the 'x' when you're at the link itself, it won't end up taking you back here.  Clear as mud?!!

Instead of a quote today, I'm sending you (particularly if you're a mom) to listen to THIS .  Happy Mother's Day!

Wednesday, May 06, 2020

Just hangin' out in the sun

PLEASE NOTE............ 
 Please read Becki's comment below and let me know 
what you think of her suggestions re checking out my links.  Is anyone else having
going back and forth between the links 
and my blog? 
 Majority will rule because I can do it either way.  
I'm here to serve!

I made this little guy for our #3 grandson.  He's only about 3" high (the penguin, not our grandson!).  

All scrap yarn and the pattern is free from Lion Brand Yarn and can be found HERE.  

This quote is from Jesse Jackson..."Never look down on anybody unless you're helping them up"

Monday, May 04, 2020

Not much

There hasn't been much of interest happening around Chez Magpie I'm afraid.  I did finish knitting a sweater for #2 grandson but I will wait until it's blocked and the buttons are on to share a photo.  So...instead of that....

Resident Chef served this yesterday afternoon and it was SOOO good, so thought I'd share a photo and the recipe in case you'd like to try it over the warmer months....

2 c. cold coffee
2 c. milk (we used unsweetened almond milk)
3 1/2 T. chocolate syrup (we make our own)
1 3/4 T. white sugar
whipped cream and chocolate shavings for garnish

Freeze coffee in ice cube trays.  Add frozen cubes, milk,
chocolate syrup and sugar to blender and blend until
it's the texture you like.  Top with whipped cream, a 
drizzle of choc. syrup and shaved chocolate.

I happened to be talking about my clock in my sewing room and took a picture to share with my friend, so thought I'd also share it with you.  This was a Christmas gift from a friend a number of years ago and was found in a thrift store.  She added the bits of lace and buttons before she gave it to me.  

Today's quote is from Harold Kushner..."Do things for people, not because of who they are or what they do in return, but because of YOU are"

Friday, May 01, 2020

Just hangin' out......

Yep, I'm just hangin' out - with the likes of Neil Diamond, Kenny G, and Garth Brooks.  Bet you didn't know I moved in such exalted circles!!  They're all crooning in my ear as I stitch on this pile.....

All of this I hope will be turned into 40 face masks in short order, with the ironing prowess of Resident Chef who gallantly has volunteered to press the ties.....80 of them!  That man is a keeper.  

I laughed when I saw this so thought I'd share in hopes it would make you smile too...

Today's quote is from David Thomas...."Unselfish and noble acts are the most radiant pages in the biography of souls"