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Sunday, January 2, 2011

First and Last

Good Morning!  What a great winter season we have had in Kentucky this year.  We had a white Christmas with a beautiful snow fall during Christmas Day.  Yesterday we had temperatures in the mid-forties and DH and I had a really nice walk.  My jaw dropped when I discovered that some of the bulbs that I planted back in November are already sticking up their light-green, fragile looking tops.  I have a feeling that they are in for a rude awakening, since we can be pretty sure that winter is not over quite yet.  This morning we are back to freezing temperatures, so I hope that they are hardy.  Hopefully they'll learn their lesson for next year.

Today I wanted to share my first cross-stitch project and my last finish with you.
I first started stitching when I was 10.  Textile- and wood-craft are mandatory on the Swedish elementary school curriculum.  I don't really remember making much useful stuff during wood-craft, but textile-crafts was different.  We learned to thread and use a sewing machine and to wind bobbins.  I remember that the sewing machine project was to make a gym-bag (a basic square draw-string bag).  That was probably good, since I tended to loose a lot of my things on my way home from school - among other things plenty of gym bags.  My poor Mom!  The other project that I recall was a cross-stitch project.  We got to pick out our own patterns from the textile craft library, but I found a pattern in one of Mom's craft magazines instead.  I decided to make a belt.  It was probably a pretty ambitious project for a (modern day) 10-year old, but I did finish it, earned an A in class, and never wore the belt.  Today I may be able to wrap the belt around my neck or use it as a head band, but no way that I can suck my stomach in enough to wear it around my waist.  I still have the belt, rolled up and displayed in my stitch-room.  Thanks to the Swedish school system, a life-long love-affair had started.

This is my last finish of 2010.  It is Jackie's (It's Fineally Finished) Rip-It.  I did a couple of minor changes - moved the frogs eyes, to make the frog look more froggy, and made larger feet and hands.  I also added a strong magnet in the little "frog button" so that it serves as a needle minder.  (Thanks for this idea, L-bug)  This was a really fun project and super quick to finish!  I also gave one each to my friends L-bug and Hoppin' Frog for their birthdays.  It will be fun to see what changes they make - L-bug is totally crazy in pink, so you never know....
Here she is on the out-side and inside:

And the really neat thing is that this is not only  a small that is quite cute, but it is also really quite useful.  I have already used the seam-ripper to cut some floss with when I was too lazy to find a pair of scissors. 
Note the pretty, green scissors fob with a frog at the end?  That was a gift from L-bug to a group of us that were attending the big Shepherd's Bush shebang this year.  I love this fob!  Mine broke pretty quickly after I got it (the frog jumped the ship somehow) so I shamelessly asked L-bug to fix it for me..  I swear, she got this baby back in order in less than 5 minutes. 

I can also tell you that the Shepherd's Bush retreat was something that can best be described as "Wow!".  Utah was beautiful, the weather was pretty much perfect, the classes were so much fun, the Shepherd's Bush and Jill Rensel's stores were simply fantastic, and L-bug and I got to meet our idols; the Blackbird Design girls!  Unfortunately, I found this trip so overwhelming (in a fabulous way) that I completely neglected to take as many photos as I wish I had taken.  Here are a couple of precious few pictures from the trip; L-bug showing off a beautiful rainbow (ask her about that back-story sometime, she'd love to tell you... ;-)), yours truly in front of a couple of really neat bird statues, and an example of how the SB ladies take all kinds of designs and make them into their own (these ornaments are EE&F's Petite Exemplary I-IV).

Speaking of Blackbird Designs.... if you are a fan, I know that you are probably waiting as anxiously for their class-book as I am.  If you are not sure what I am talking about; Barb wrote on her blog a while back that Alma and she are planning on compiling all their class-project into a book that will be published this year.  How cool will that be!?  Truly something to look forward to, don't you think?

Well, I'd better go and feed all the parrots.  The sun is coming out right now, so it looks like yet another beautiful day here in KY!

Talk with you in a bit & Happy Stictching,


  1. You are crackin' me up with the frog jumping off thing. I'm glad you thought to bring it to me to fix. Happy to do it!

    Ahh...the rainbow...good times!!

  2. Kul att läsa om ditt första projekt, visste inte att det var så tidigt det startade :)Känner dock igen skärpet, har sett det förut. Himla fint, äääälskar blommor! Pusspuss