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.

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...

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.

Friday, May 28, 2021

yewwwwwww and other mumblings

 Well it was certainly a rude awakening here this morning - looked outside and it's snowing.  SNOWING!!!  And it's three days before the end of May.  What's with that?!!!  Canada in the spring - you see it??

It's right above there ^ ^ ^ ^ ^ ^ ^ ^

You mean you STILL don't see it???

Well, I can't UNSEE that snow this morning so thought I'd take a video to show you.  Unfortunately I can't get it to load onto the blog.  


Oh.  Well then.  Surprise!!!!

Today's quote is from Steve Maraboli..."Why let go of yesterday?  Because yesterday has already let go of you"

Wednesday, May 26, 2021

A little progress and RIP

 First of all, I've completed the stitching on three more pieces for the advent calendars, as you can see here...

I'm trying to come up with two designs that reflect the same 'thing' but yet be different too.  I couldn't find a second gingerbread man that I liked any better than the one on the top, so I simply used the same design but changed it up to make the second one.

And I'm very sad to report that there have been recent additions to the Teddy Bear Graveyard here at Chez Magpie.  Plans are underway for an appropriate ceremonial burial with all due pomp and circumstance necessary under such sad circumstances. Prior to that there will be a certain amount of organ donation.  Please do observe a moment of silence in honour of the body parts....

A new pattern has been drafted and hopefully you can stay tuned for the birth of a new life.  The circle of life, what can I say.

Today's quote..."This woman has fought a thousand battles and is still standing, has cried a thousand tears, and is still smiling.  Has been broken, betrayed, abandoned, rejected, but she still walks proud, laughs loud, lives without fear, loves without doubt.  This woman is beautiful.  This woman is humble.  This woman is YOU!  

Monday, May 24, 2021

A finish and a little progress

 Over the weekend I put the finishing touches on another mile-a-minute afghan.  This one was also designed to use up scraps - a lot of them left over from when I had to order more yarn to complete the earlier mile-a-minute (it's the galloping ick!!).  I've also ordered enough yarn to make two more - one will be grey with black 'centers' and the other will be black with ivory 'centers', not quite so colorful perhaps but I think they will suit the people I'm gifting them to.  More additions to the Christmas box!

And....I did a few more additions to the cross stitch advents, although I think I'm going to replace the candy cane on the right with another design I like better....

I don't normally put too much of a personal nature on this blog but today I am going to make a small exception if only to tell you not to leave something that's happening in your body in hopes that it will go away.  Seek medical help and don't worry about wasting their time.  Last week I had an area of concern removed from the underside of my tongue.  I'm assured by the specialist that it's 'pre-cancerous' and even if it isn't, it was caught in time (concrete results in 3 weeks time).  I have stitches and am relying on the skills that Resident Chef uses with the blender to make me something I can eat.  Some of it doesn't look too appetizing but at least it tastes good!   I've had French toast, beef stew, potato soup, and this morning I had quiche.  All pureed of course.  Makes me a have a whole 'nother appreciation for what babies have to eat!!  All this, not to upset you or make you concerned about me, but to ask you to please not wait to have something checked out.  Early intervention is the key here and something I'm grateful to have known.  

Today's quote..."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.  Leave the rest to God"

Friday, May 21, 2021

#2 - 4

 I've added some more little cross stitch designs to my advent calendar collection as you can see...

Sorry it's not such a great photo!  I'm hoping that I can come up with two different designs for each (ie. 2 snowmen, 2 Rudolph's, etc).  I know as I get towards the end that's likely to not happen but for the most part I'm going to try.

- I must admit that THIS intrigued me, not that I have need of such a thing but nevertheless it's rather fun!

- Many of us are facing another stay-at-home summer so perhaps you might find THIS tutorial useful.

- THESE would make wonderful gifts - and the designs can be used in a myriad of different applications.

- There are some great tips HERE to help you deal with the influx of mosquitoes this time of year.

Today's quote..."Today, close the door to the past, open the door to the future, take a deep breath, step on through and start a new chapter in your life"

Monday, May 17, 2021

A new project - or forty eight

Some of you may remember me showing you fabric advent calendars I made for two of our grandkids last year.  I never was overly happy with them, especially after I realized that the parents would have to come up with 'something' to put in each of the pockets.  Since then I've been thinking about what else I could do and finally have settled on cross stitching little  designs that ultimately will be hung on a quilted Christmas tree.  At the moment the plan is to make 48 little designs (2 calendars) and if I don't keel over in boredom I will also replace the one I made for our older grandson.  Grandma wasn't thinking when she thought it would be smart to make pockets that needed to be filled!  So, here's the first one....

I thought I'd crop this picture so you'd just see the little snowman (which, btw, measures a little less than 2") but then I decided I'd leave a little bit of the prep for the next one there to show you.  For those of you who don't know, that's waste canvas.  The design is worked on that and then the threads of the canvas are removed one by one leaving only the design itself behind.  You can also see faint pencil lines marking out the squares at 3"

Today's quote..."Never think that what you have to offer is insignificant.  There will always be someone out there who needs what you have to give"

Friday, May 14, 2021

Ho hum

 I've looked around for something I could show you today and the pickin's are pretty slim.  So I settled on showing you something that arrived recently in the mail.  Since the pandemic began Resident Chef has been cutting my hair (and doing a fine job!) firstly because the hair salons were closed and then because I realized just how much money I was saving (and now the salons are closed once again anyway).  He's been using his beard trimmer so I thought I would buy the 'proper' equipment for him to use.  This is what we got...

It comes with so many attachments (9) that it will take us eons to figure them all out!  Tonight will hopefully be the inaugural run so we'll see how well it performs...or if I'll need to scrounge out some brown paper bags to wear over my head!

Today's quote..."If you don't like something, take away its only power - your attention"

Wednesday, May 12, 2021

Two 'nothers

 Over the weekend I finished off another of the projects I had begun pre-cataract surgeries and this will also be added to the Christmas box.  This is a crocheted mile-a-minute design that is very simple and uses up some stash.  Unfortunately the stash didn't extend to enough colours SOOOO....what's a girl to do but order more?  And then THAT set of circumstances leads to having to use up THAT additional've started another of these, only with black as the main colour.  In the meantime, here's the first one...

and here is a closeup...

Here is another recipe we just discovered and love ... it's courtesy of the May 2021 issue of the Food Network Magazine...


Freeze 2 sliced bananas and 1 diced mango until firm, at least 4 hours. Puree in a food processor with 3 T. agave syrup (we use maple syrup), 1/2 tsp. grated fresh ginger and a pinch of salt until thick and smooth.  Transfer to a small baking dish and freeze until firm.  


SERVICE ANNOUNCEMENT - For those of you who follow my blog via email, you no doubt are aware that FeedBurner is going away and now there's a mad scramble to find a replacement.  There's a good alternative that you can read about in THIS blog post.  AND...another might consider signing up for INOREADER which is a free service.  It's what I use and where I follow all the blogs I like.  


Today's quote..."Respect yourself enough to walk away from anything that no longer serves you, grows you, or makes you happy.  If you aren't being treated with love and respect, check your price tag.  Maybe you've marked yourself down.  It's YOU who tells people what your worth is.  Get off the clearance rack and get behind the glass where they keep the valuables"

Friday, May 07, 2021

 I didn't have anything ready to share in the way of a photo today and then these arrived.....

Thank you Shawn and Winnie!!

Today's quote..."Sometimes doing nothing is doing something very important"

Wednesday, May 05, 2021

Another finish and a recipe

 Today I have a couple of things to share with you.  First up is that I've finished the latest landscape (well, all but the label!). The photos are pretty awful because we're in a period of dull rainy days here, but you can get the general idea I'm sure.

Above is the original photo, shared with the kind permission of Dale Stewart (thank you!), and is of the Uneeda School near Paradise Valley in Alberta.  Below is what I created using his photo as inspiration...


And this is a closeup of some of the embroidery and the border detail

And, because I haven't given you a recipe lately, how about this one?  It's one of my favourites that come out of Resident Chef's kitchen...


2 eggs
1 c. milk
1/2 tsp. salt
1 c. all purpose flour

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.  Grease a standard muffin pan & set aside.  Beat eggs until creamy and add remaining ingredients.  Beat until smooth. Note: the batter will be thin!  Fill each muffin cup half full with batter.  Bake for 35 mins.  

Today's quote..."Your terrible job is the dream of the unemployed.  Your house is the dream of the homeless.  Your smile is the dream of the depressed.  Your health is the dream of those who are ill.  Don't let difficult times make you forget your blessings"

Monday, May 03, 2021

A finish

 I began this project before I had my cataract surgery in hopes that I'd be able to work on it during the hiatus period.  That didn't happen, but I did finish it over the weekend....

I was given four balls of the Bernat Velvet yarn and needed to find a project that would use it up (those balls are HUGE and take up way too much stash space).  I don't have an immediate use for a baby blanket but at least it used most of the yarn.

Another wee note re the Velvet yarn - it feels so wonderfully soft but the balls I have had a number of knots which were quite annoying.  And trying to use a pattern with much stitch definition would be frustrating.  I just used a double crochet post stitch which worked fine.

Today's quote....