Sunday, December 27, 2009

More Christmassy stuff..

I'm not ready for Christmas weekend to end.  I don't feel like it's time to go back to work yet.   So I am going to share with you a few ornaments from our tree.. some have special meaning/sentiment and some I just really like.. and there really are so many more.. but here are a few.

This one I stitched myself, from a freebie I think, not sure how many years ago. I just think he's cute.

This is a neat one my mom gave me- I love snowmen and old looking ornaments so this one is a favorite.

This one I received from Deb in Kentucky from an exchange a few years ago. This one is from a freebie from a UK stitching magazine I think.

My grandma stitched this one for me, along with two or three other ones with a similar theme.

I received this one this Christmas from a pen pal of mine whom I've been writing to for years- since high school at least, I think!

I dont' really remember where this little wooden Santa came from.. I just like him.

Another one my mom gave me...

I bought this one when I was in grade school- it is looking pretty rough, but it is a mouse sleeping in a half a walnut shell-her little quilt is real fabric. I bought it at a "Christmas fair"- where your parents give you money and the gym has a bunch of craft-type things for kids to buy for their families as presents. I still love this ornament--maybe I should touch up her paint..

My dad made this one..

A Prairie Schooler freebie I stitched several years ago..

 A berry ornament I bought in historic St. Charles, MO (one of my favorite places)

My mom made this one for me along with a couple of other pretty ones.
And my friend Rhoda asked about Hanna's stocking - I stitched hers years ago- I don't remember when I finished it, if it was before or after her first Christmas- but here it is. It was from an issue of Cross Stitch and Needlework(or it may have been called Cross Stitch and Country Crafts then)- I looked for a similar one for David but never found one I really liked, so I went with Shepherds Bush.

Well I hope you enjoyed my little pictorial! lol And for those of you heading back to work/normal routine tomorrow- just remember you aren't alone! ;)

Friday, December 25, 2009

Merry Christmas!!

I am just chillin' at home with my family- kids are playing Lego Batman on the Wii, Rob is working on Hanna's new ipod, getting it ready to roll.. thought I would check in with my blog friends and see how everyone's Christmas is going! I am wearing a warm snuggly poncho my mom made for me- I will have Hanna take a picture later so you can see. :) I did get two stitchy gifts- an Ott-Lite (Michael's had them 1/2 price, woo hoo!) and a beautiful hardcover book "A Cross Stitch Christmas" from my FIL and his wife.  All kinds of designers are featured including Donna Vermillion Giampa, Ursula Michael, Gail Bussi, Nora Corbett, and a lot more!! There are some beautiful winter scenes and a gorgeous stained glass window pattern.   Dh also go me a new camera- a Canon Power Shot(thanks Edgar! I love it!) so maybe now that I have a camera that's a little more portable I will have more pictures to share with you all. 
Rob helped me finish my ornaments the other night-he is better with a sewing machine than me-and they were sent out yesterday. I only have one to finish yet and get out, which I will hopefully take care of this weekend. I am just trying to decide how to finish it because it's a rectangular shape with a rounded top.  I never did finish stitching the Tinkerbell design for dd, I think she has forgotten about it- so I will continue to plug away at that and my Dec. flip-it. I have joined the Brooke's Books Stitcher's Alphabet SAL- I am hoping to get the fabric I  need this weekend also.  I have never started a project from the corner before, always the middle- but since all the letters aren't done yet I'll be starting in the top left corner- any tips?
Dh and I watched "The Accidental Husband" the other night- the reviews I had heard were not so good but Colin Firth was in it so I gave it a try anyway.. it was predictable but still cute, I thought.  Don't know that I'd buy it for my DVD collection but it wasn't so bad. I mean we rented it from a Redbox and it was not a waste of 1.00. lol  We've also rented "All About Steve"- hope to watch it soon. I would like to watch at least one version of "A Christmas Carol" this weekend - I have two tivoed. 
I don't think I have shared a picture of our Christmas tree yet- this was taken with the old camera-

It was taken right after we put it up.  The kids and I made Christmas cookies yesterday- this year I opted for the Toll House pre-made dough- it is delicious and so much more convenient!  Here is the finished product- the one with fewer cookies was decorated by Hanna and I decorated most of the larger plate- there are a few decorated by David- those would be the ones with the piles of icing. lol

I also got a great deal on a gingerbread house kit at Michael's so the kids and I will hopefully do that this weekend as well.
Well, I am sure chatty today aren't I? That's about it for now- hope I will have some stitchy pics soon- but in the meantime here are my attempts at taking the kids' pic for the Christmas card- they would not sit still- I finally gave up and chose the one in the middle.

This bottom one would have been perfect if David didn't have the goofy look on his face!

Merry Christmas and as Tiny Tim said -"God bless us every one!"

Wednesday, December 23, 2009


Why is it that every time I get out my sewing machine something goes wrong?  Why? Tonight I wanted to sew up some ornaments, that are already going to be late. I ironed all the pieces and sat down to work.  I placed the pieces of fabric under the needle and as I began to sew- not even one stitch- my needle broke!! And of course I couldn't get the lever to un-screw to get the needle out- Rob will replace it for me later. I hope I have the right replacement.  The more I attempt sewing, the more I see why women send their pieces out to be finished.  I know this is just something minor but it seems like every time I sew something goes wrong!! I am just so frustrated.

David's stocking is now officially a stocking!

I finally remembered to take this to a lady at my church, and ask her to finish this into a stocking for me.  I finished stitching this last winter I think, but after Christmas, I also couldn't find buttons I liked for a while, and I didn't want to pay $30 for the accessory pack- I think that's how much it was. So here it is- finally!

And here is a pic of some of the ornament kits I did for my MIL- I forgot to take a picture of the others and have already sent them to her! Oops!

Hope to finish up some ornaments for other people soon and get them sent so I can post them!;)

Monday, December 21, 2009

Just a quick post (w/ a finish!)

I am still working on ornaments- I am afraid some are going to be late. :( But I did get this one finished- I made it for my friend/zumba instructor Pretz- the winter scene is from For The Love of  Cross Stitch magazine(I think!) and the alphabet is from a Gloria & Pat alphabet leaflet.  My hubby assembled the ornament for me. :)  The fabric is Silkwaver I think- Blue Dynasty? DMC floss and Kreinik #4 braid- it actually called for blending filament but I didn't have any - so instead of using floss and filament I just used the braid. I think it turned out pretty well, and Pretz loved it, which is the important thing. :)

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Companies taking the Christ out of Christmas!

I am a Christian, and it really upsets me that so many stores are willing to recognize other winter holidays such as Hanukkah (forgive me if that is spelled wrong) and Kwanzaa, but not Christmas. I know not everyone is Christian, and am not offended by those celebrating the above holidays, however most of the people I have spoken to that are not Christian, or know people who aren't Christian, say they and those they know are not offended by those saying "Merry Christmas."  So why is Christ being taken out of Christmas? Below are a list of companies who have chosen to do so.  Please take some time to let them know that this upsets you.  This list was given to me by a friend of mine, so if any links/emails don't work I apologize.

These companies have banned "Christmas" from their retail ads, in-store promotions or television commercials.

Please take time to let them know you are offended by their anti-Christian and anti-Christmas bias. Their contact information is below.

We cannot stress to strongly how important it is for you to be firm, yet very kind in your correspondence with these companies. Please be respectful and choose your words wisely.

In addition, companies marked with an asterisk* have gone so far as to substitute the phrase "Holiday or Dream trees" instead of "Christmas trees" in their promotions.


* Target (612) 304-6073


Click Here to read the AFA Press Release

In their official statement, Target said: “Over the course of the next few weeks, our advertising, marketing and merchandising will become more specific to the holiday that is approaching – referring directly to holidays like Christmas and Hanukkah. For example, you will see reference to Christmas in select television commercials, circulars and in-store signage."

Original Target Issue Concern:

Target refuses to use the word "Christmas" in any of their corporate advertising. Their latest 36-page ad insert did use the phrase "holiday" 31 times. In addition, Target has banned the Salvation Army bell ringers from their stores, but opted to sell items online for customers to donate to the Salvation Army. Ironically, Target doesn't give a single cent to them, but profits from your purchase. They also charge you to ship the item to the Salvation Army.

Nordstrom (206) 628-2111 President Blake W. Nordstrom

On their "holiday shipping" section of the website, they only refer to "December 25." Their catalogs do not mention the word "Christmas." Mr. Nordstrom says he welcomes your comments.

* Sears (847) 286-2500

Sears, owned by Kmart, is advertising "Holiday" trees on page seven of their circular. It also was noticeably absent of the word "Christmas." UPDATE: Sears has confirmed that it now displays a sign reading "Merry Christmas" at the entrance to its stores nationwide.

Walgreens (847) 940-2500 President Jeffery Rien

Because of your efforts, Walgreens has released the following response in 2006: "Next year (2007), you can be assured our advertising will better incorporate 'Christmas,' and our holiday trees will be called Christmas trees. Unfortunately, all of this year’s December ads are already printed, so it's too late to make changes for this season."
(Just for the record, I (Tracey) looked at their online ad for this week- all the Christmas-themed items say "holiday" socks or "holiday" gloves- the only reference to Christmas I found was for Christmas pencils!)
Lowe's (800) 445-6937

We are pleased to update you about Lowe’s sale of Christmas trees. Lowe’s informed the AFA that it is removing banners referring to “holiday trees” from its stores (the actual product signs inside Lowe’s stores did say Christmas trees, but the outside banner did not). Lowe’s says it has proudly sold Christmas trees in its stores for decades, and continues to do so this year in all of its stores nationwide. All 49 varieties of live and artificial trees at Lowe’s and on are labeled as Christmas trees.

Lowe’s assures AFA that the language on the banner was a mistake, and was not in any way an attempt to remove Christmas from the season.

We applaud Lowe’s for listening to its customers and responding to their concerns. Just as we alerted Lowe’s to our concerns, now let’s show them our support by sending thank you emails and shopping in their stores.

Office Max (877) 484-3629

Office Max offers no "Christmas" in their advertising.

Kmart (800) 635-6278

Kmart promotes a "Holiday Sale" on their website. Links to the trees webpage asks if you "Need it by Christmas," but refers you to its "Holiday Shipping Dates" section.

Staples (800) 378-2753

In searching for "Christmas" on their website, results show only three matches. Staples ads avoid using "Christmas."
Best Buy (888) 237-8289

Best Buy offers no "Christmas" in their advertising.

Kohl's UPDATE: Kohl's has provided AFA with a corporate statement. They dispute the charge made on The O'Reilly Factor and provided a letter stating they "would use the word 'Christmas' in some of our advertising." AFA is pleased to let you know that this in, in fact, the case. Kohl's asks us to inform you of their plans to incorporate "Christmas" in future advertising. We appreciate Kohl's listening to their customers concerns and responding in kind.


These companies have banned "Christmas" from their television commercials. In a review of commercials aired on prime-time broadcast network, these companies clearly marketed their ads to Christmas shoppers without using the word "Christmas."

In a total of 116 commercials, only 11 (9%) included the word "Christmas" in the ad.

SC Johnson

Therese Van Ryne Public Relations Manager


L.L. Bean



David H. Sternblitz, Vice President



Julian C. Day, President and Chief Executive Officer


Outback Steakhouse

Emails to Outback are being rejected with the message, "Your message was deleted without being read." You may wish to make a personal call.

Stephanie Amberg, Director of public relations


Chris T. Sullivan Chairman of the Board

A. William Allen, III Chief Executive Officer

Benjamin P. Novello President, Outback Steakhouse



Old Navy


Old Navy is proud of their anti-Christmas stance, simply referring to the "holiday" (Christmas) as nothing more than a tradition.



Best Buy

Susan Busch Director, Corporate Public Relations

612-292-4000, ext 4


Stephen M. Carter, Chief Executive Officer


Reckitt Benckiser

Tom Corran, SVP IR and corporate communications

973 404 2600

Pier 1

Merianne Kimmel Roth, Senior PR Manager


Red Lobster

Darden Media Relations

Joe R. Lee, Chairman & CEO


Office Depot

Bruce Nelson Chairman & Chief Executive Officer



James (Jim) M. Kilts Chairman, Chief Executive Officer, and President

John F. Manfredi SVP Corporate Affairs



Laurie, Ellison, Executive Director of Communications


Burlington Coat

Monroe G. Milstein – Chairman, President, and CEO

Phone: 609-387-7800




Gail Carvelli Media Relations Manager

401) 431-8697

Thursday, December 10, 2009

To Thee Hope

I finished my Brightneedle ornament today- still need to "finish" it- but thought I'd post anyway. I didn't use the recommended DMC but used overdyeds instead- if anyone is interested this is what I used:

DMC 169- GAST Barn Grey
           318-GAST Bankers Grey
           372-SSS Green Tea Ice Cream
           407-SSS Mocha
           452-WDW Carnation
            524-GAST Green Apple (I didn't actually use this- the two letters that were to be stitched in this color I stitched in a different color-SSS Spice Drop-by accident and just left them alone. )
            927-GAST Evergreen
            3013-WDW Ivy
            3046-WDW Beige
            3053-SSS Spice Drop
            3774-SSS White Peach
            3863-GAST Cidermill brown

I stitched it on BCG Textiles linen, 32 ct.  This was from the 2006 JCS Ornament Issue,  stitched  one strand of floss over one fabric thread .  Now off to work on a Christmas gift...

Wednesday, December 09, 2009

Sushi boats and giveaway goodies!!

The other day I received my giveaway from Robin - it made my day cause I was really having a bad Monday- and this was a spot of sunshine in it all! I know she posted pics on her blog when she had the giveaway, but I thought I'd post some too..

Isn't this a lovely journal? I love the quote on it- I even have it written in a book of favorite quotes/poetry somewhere. :)  Thank you so much Robin!
I also won a book on Goodreads! I was notified yesterday. I won The First Rule.  I'm really looking forward to receiving it and checking it out!
A friend of ours from Illinois is taking a class near by for a couple of weeks, so he stopped in to see us last night.  We went to Hanna's concert at school then all went our for sushi. Look what we got:

A boat full of sushi!!! It was delicious!! And very artistic. I wish I would've had a real camera to take a picture.  Although two women sitting at the sushi bar already thought I was a bit weird for taking a picture of our dinner.. lol.  We had just never had one of these before!
On the stitching front- still stitching away on gifts and ornaments. I am hoping to finish my Brightneedle ornament tomorrow.. unfortunately I don't even know if I am going to give it away- it's so dainty and pretty!!  lol Speaking of stitching.. that is what I should be doing right now.. so until later..

Saturday, December 05, 2009

the right day for some stitching supplies!!

I am so sorry I haven't been blogging much lately- been working feverishly on Christmas gifts, added to the usual day to day stuff.. phew! I have cut back on my computer time somewhat for now. 
Today I went to my LNS to pick up some beads and Kreinik braid I needed for a gift I'm working on (thanks so much Michael's for phasing them out so I have to drive 20 min or more to get them! Argh!). But anyway, it was probably a blessing in disguise- I went to my LNS because she always has her Mill Hill beads and Kreinik stocked- also picked up some beading thread... and I wanted to check the price on Butternut Road's "Winter Sampler" cause I really love that pattern. I'd like to start working on it after I'm finished with gifts.. I checked and she asked me how much it was- I said "14.00." And she said "I'll give it to you for half price." I had only brought a certain amount of cash with me but she took checks so I figured out a way to work it all out. :) She also let me know from time to time she has half-off sales on her charts and asked me if she had my phone number. I said no and she passed me her little blue book where I promptly wrote it down! Am hoping to go back soon and take advantage of the sale when I have a bit more money.  "Winter Sampler" is an older pattern but here's a pic if you aren't familiar with it-

The only think I'm not too sure of is the white moth at the time.. to me it doesn't fit.. but I guess there would be nothing to put in it's place so maybe I'll try it, it is kind of pretty, for a bug. lol

Thursday, December 03, 2009

Me and my little man

Taken this morning-I got all my hair chopped off yesterday!
Oh, and that hat used to be mine when I was little. My mom or grandma made it, can't remember! :)

A Gathering of Secrets by Linda Castillo

I know, not much stitching lately but I have been on a roll reading books!  I was recently given the opportunity to read this awesome novel,...