Friday, May 28, 2021

May Stitching and Bayou Pictures

 I am shock at how fast May has flown by me. I have been busy so I suppose that made it go by quickly. I have been all over the map with stitching too. I think I have too many large pieces in progress and that makes me loopy. I don't have a lot of visible progress, but I am sharing my May all over the place stitching.

I do have a finish. Lindsay asked for a small ornament to hang on her TV cabinet. I found a row of sailboats in the current issue of Just Cross Stitch. This would be so cute in a little boy's bedroom, but I took one of the boats and added some words and voila I have a stitch for her.



This is the part of the picture from the magazine.



I now need to do her a May stitch of a bird or flower and then a late summer or back to school stitch and then she will have a full set of seasonal ornaments to hang on her cabinet.

I worked on the heron and his legs are added.

*Warning, from this point forward the pictures will not be ironed or pretty.


Doing projects like this are not for the faint of heart. They take a long time, but the end result is just pure magic.

Then I pulled out a fall piece. I do NOT need anymore fall pieces, but this one captured my heart so I bought it and plan to make a drum out of it. I am making mine much brighter than the picture on the pattern, but it sort of says old school to me.


There are two more cats in the Cats on Parade. I also don't need anymore patriotic pieces, but I do have one more in my stash that is calling my name, but I will it have to wait until next year to start it. 

Moving on... I pulled out the Hart verse and started on it. I stopped because I am about to make some dramatic changes to the colors. I am going to lay them out in the next few days because I want this done and I want it to be brighter. Imagine some blue butterflies and brighter colors. It's going to happen.



I don't want to lose the beauty of this verse but this thing is screaming for more color. 

I pulled out something that has been in my stash since the early 1990s. It had some Aida in the kit, but I pulled out a piece of linen in my scraps. I started at the bottom and then moved it up. I may actually frame this. I then may do another one on smaller count for Lindsay later. Oh the plans....


I bought a kit off ebay a while back and have started this too but on a piece of linen. Not really enough to show much progress, but still a WIP.


It has the trespasses version included which I am going to do instead of debts. I learned it by heart that way and think that is what I want.

I have also worked on Let Freedom Ring. I told y'all I had been all over the place. I wasn't joking!


I have so many things I want to stitch. I have really been good about not buying much new since I have so much in my bins. However, I did see a new Plum Street Sampler piece from a video the other day. It hasn't been released to the public yet, but my goodness, my heart skipped a beat over it. 

There is no denying that cross stitching, dabbling in my flowers and reading are my hobbies.

Oh and we have a name for the new baby due in July. It is Palmer James ***** which means I have to stitch his name like Tucker's. That will take precedents over some of the other things when she tells me what she wants around the letters.

I have forgotten to share my May bayou pictures so I am popping these in with my stitching post.

These were taken around the middle of May.
Green galore.




I have been reading comments as I published but I have had a busier week or two than normal, so hopefully this week I can get to everyone's blog to catch up.

So grateful for the men and women who died to give me the country I live in. We are so blessed.
Sandy





Wednesday, May 26, 2021

The Play Area

      I am throwing in a very quick tour of my downstairs area. As I said, in a previous post, Mimi's Daycare starts full time again this fall with the new baby. Tucker will go to his daycare in the fall. He will stay home while Lindsay is home with the baby. I am sure I will get him on days to give her a break. All that coupled with a few other things had me thinking I needed to do some preparing for the arrival of the new baby too. My  bedroom and living room were  starting to look like a toy store. Then I will be adding to the mix with baby items.

That led me to go downstairs and do a good cleaning and purging of some stuff I had taken down there and piled on a table rather than dealing with. Then that led me to look around downstairs at all the houseplants that I wasn't taking very good care of...and well, one thing led to another. After two long days down there and several more bits of time it is finally looking good again. 

The upstairs is looking less cluttered with toys and that made my mind feel less cluttered. Sometimes you just need to rearrange and freshen and give some thought to how to make things better.

My downstairs is a big area where Paul Allen and his gang played and made messes during those teenage days. His bedroom was also down there. When I retired I got some new a new bed and chest and a new couch down there. You can read about that here and here. Both are very long posts, but you can learn more about some of the cool history of things down there.

So here we go with new pictures... They are all mixed up because I don't have it in me today to load them one at a time and Blogger is frustrating me these days!!! Big time! 

One corner with tubs of toys and stuffed animals. One entire tub is Beanie babies which I never should have kept:)

This is looking back at the entry to downstairs. I still have a few things to take outside. My oar for my paddle board and the boat cleaning brush. 

This is what you see when you enter downstairs. I did fix up a TV we had with a Chromecast to watch from the phone.

Lots of room to run around and play.


Like I said, a few more things to find homes for, although the lifejackets and floats do stay out in here.

All the rolling things or baby things that will brought up as age appropriate time occurs. I actually could put some of them in a closet downstairs, but Tucker does play with them even though he doesn't sit in them. 



I moved all houseplants out from down there. I now have 7 empty pots and one more angel wing begonia that went outside on the bottom deck to stay permanently. One mother-in-law's tongue went upstairs to make the total of houseplants upstairs to the whopping number of 18. I have a problem...don't you think?!!! I know I do and believe it or not, I feel so much lighter having moved them out of there. I haven't missed one of them at all.

It is time to use this energy I am having at the moment to get real about how much I can take care of. I have one more post this week to share. I want to do a long awaited stitching post to close out May and then I am going to be absent for a couple of weeks. I have two birthdays to celebrate in June and Kristan, our niece will be in town for another night. I will have plenty to share after those two weeks off. All that to say I am probably putting two posts out pretty close together.

Tuesday, May 25, 2021

A Child's Nautical Themed Room

    I have been promising a peek at Tucker's big boy bedroom. Since they are having another boy, the baby room will stay as it is and Tucker will move in the room next to it with a nautical theme. I realized when looking back that I never really did a final room tour of Tucker's nursery. This post was the closest thing I had to one. You can see the idea. It is safari animals and Lindsay is the queen of utilizing space without it looking cluttered. Tucker's closet is the best used of space ever.

    The pictures I am sharing with you are all taken at different times. She would send me a picture here and there as she added things. I have been there several times as she put it all together. Tucker has been in on the process too. He knows it is coming. The test is coming next week with sleeping in there. 

   The bedroom set is one Mother had in her home before moving down here and downsizing. Lindsay was  the lucky recipient of it. It only has a dresser and one side table but it is perfect for the room she has. Now, I know what you are thinking...way too fancy for a kid. I think it could be for some kids. Tucker is so good and neat and while he is all boy, Lindsay has trained the activity for outdoors. I knew that Amanda at Dixie Delights (see sidebar) always had nice furniture in her boys' rooms, so it is staying and can always be changed later if needed.


The first purchase was bedding. I happened to be looking at Pottery Barn one night after she said what she was looking for and the nautical striped coverlet and pillows were on clearance. She had the navy one. Step one done! I then had some LLBean points and bought here the perfect sailboat sheets. She found an anchor lamp and I stitched his name above the bed. You can see an unclose and how it came together post on the name stitch here.

They moved his little chair in and then added some baskets above for his books.


Gus approves also.


Then we helped Lindsay pick up this little shelf similar to the other room. It is great place to add the cutsie things to carry out the subtle theme. I know she brought all of his clothes and other goodies in this weekend and fixed up his closet, but I know have the final pictures. She has had a very busy week.


His dresser got filled with his clothes this weekend and he is working really hard on potty training and doing quite well. Mimi's baby is a little boy now.

Tyler made the cutest coat hook out of boat cleats. He can hang hats or book bags or jackets or whatever as he grows.




Here is a closeup. I thought this was so clever.


Here is Tucker holding his shark that is hung above it.


That is a quick trip of his bedroom that hopefully he will move into without tears next week. The rails for his bed are here, so time to move up and make room for the baby.

I will try soon to get a little tour up of my downstairs playroom. He is coming for a little while to play this afternoon. We will see if he approves of the changes.

I will close with ---------for the first time I have not been ready to put my summery stitches out in their basket. I love summer and that is good thing since I live in a climate which can feel like the surface of the sun from May to October. 
I have enjoyed spring this year and boy did this Memorial Day weekend just sneak up on me!!! I tucked my spring items away and pulled out the patriotic things yesterday. 
To me summer comes with this weekend. Here we go!

It came in with a bang. Home insurance was cancelled and the new company is ---well, Jeff and I are still trying to digest the amount. It has been a tough pill to swallow. All those people migrating to Florida may want to rethink it.

Everyday is a blessing, so I am going to toughen up and be grateful.
Sandy

P.S. Forgive any errors or misplaced words...no time to edit.

Saturday, May 22, 2021

Life Update

 I didn't mean to be gone from the blog so long but I have just been busy....some fun and some just the hectic stuff of life. No complaints though since it just feels good to see people doing life again with other people.

My one big piece of news is that I officially have a daughter-in-law. I couldn't be more excited or proud. Katie is an answer to a prayer that honestly is far greater than my small mind could have envisioned. 



It has made me extra grateful for the fact that I have both kids married to such good people that love them and bring out the best in them. 

Paul Allen and Katie did it their way...small and quiet and then left the dogs with us for a long weekend to Helen, Georgia. Lindsay and I both laughed and said that was as far as she could get Paul Allen to travel. He is a homebody! They are both so happy and that makes me happy. The picture was taken as they were leaving to go to Helen.

My absence can be summed up in several things. I will give you an abbreviated version of those things.

Spring weather...May is a great month and I find it the best month to get outside and get the outdoor things done. I haven't finished, but I have done a lot. Still need to clean some windows and hit some stone walls with the pressure washer, but progress has been made. I think summer weather arrives next week so I am glad I have prioritized the time outside. 

Family emergencies. My aunt had a spell that earned her a ride on a helicopter to Mobile and my mother a panic frenzy. She lives out in the country so that means you don't wait on ambulances. You get put in the car and drive like a bat of hell to either Brewton or Monroeville. Depending on that choice you will get shipped to Pensacola or Mobile. All this to say, my mother and her two sisters went into panic mode. I had to rush over to Mother's to calm her and pray. Then an hour later they had decided they must get to Mobile. I took Mom to Range to ride with the other two to Mobile. My aunt is home and doing well with new blood pressure medicine and lots of instructions. 

Mother has also had a couple of doctor appointments with her shoulder. She is doing some exercises and taking some medicine temporarily for some inflammation. Not sure what she did to aggravate it, but she is better too.

Tucker has a cold so I had to keep him one day for that and another for his mommy to go to an appointment. It was a logistical thing to make it all work and it was easier to keep him the whole day. Always good for me... so that was two days.

When you leave the house the day flies by faster than ever. You get the picture. We have all been there.

I haven't stitched much, but a stitching update will be done next week. 

I had been reading and am enjoying that past time again. I think when you turn off the TV and stay off the computer you find your way back to books again. I will say that I got so aggravated the other day. I had been listening to a book on Overbook from the library while doing some heavy duty moving around and cleaning the other day. I was 45 minutes in when the book just took a turn that made me stinking mad. I won't get into it, but the beauty of the library is you can just return it instantly. Done...no time for foolishness such as that when I have a stack of books to read that I am dying to read. 

I had a brilliant idea one day when Tucker was here about making downstairs the toy room. Upstairs (which is the main level) was getting a little crowded with all of it. I am also a person who will pile things up while I think about what to do with something rather than just making a decision so a corner of downstairs has just gotten pure junky. That took two whole days to do what I wanted to do, but now downstairs is looking so much better and Lindsay said it was Mimi's Playhouse now. 

Come fall the baby swing and just those things will have to come back out in the main room. It was time to make a new plan. Tucker loves it down there so we have one big room to run now.

Of course that led to some realistic thoughts on the houseplant situation. This is getting long so I will leave that for another day. I owe you a tour of Tucker's new bedroom and maybe some pictures of Mimi's Playhouse.

As I said earlier, summer weather is coming next week so I will be dropping my paddle board in the water. Pretty excited about that.

Summer groovin' kind of mindset,

Sandy



Monday, May 10, 2021

Weekend Wrap-up and More

 We left for  our Auburn home Thursday evening after Jeff got off work and had a wonderful longer weekend. It seemed like forever since we had been. While many have been a little slower with work during Covid, I feel as though Jeff has had very little breathing room. I feel like he has more on his plate due to the condition of people's minds over many issues and has been busier than ever. 

That said, we finally just decided it was time to break away and we enjoyed every single minute.  The house was fine, but we did throw a bit of fertilizer out on the grass and water that in. Other than that most of it was spent enjoying friends and down time.

I sat out on my little hidden porch and stitched and read. The Confederate jasmine was in full bloom and smelled divine. I did sneeze a good bit but I stayed through the sneezes.

This was my view from my chair.



The view of the chairs and the jasmine covered fence. All of the oaks that are so different than the ones here were so pretty and lush.




This is the view from the other side that the neighbors see.



I also finally hung my flower stitches up. Can you believe it has been that long since we have been up there? I have had them done so long and just waiting to be hung. I intend to remedy that by going up myself during the week before the new baby gets here.






We also took a chair that we had downstairs here to the master bedroom. I love that room and will enjoy the chair so I can sit up there. Jeff wanted it just to have a place to put on his shoes. I still sit on the floor to put mine on in the closet, so I didn't need it for that, but I could see how it would help him. Otherwise he has to wait until he gets downstairs to put on his shoes. I didn't need the chair here and had thought several times about getting rid of it. It worked perfectly for that spot in Auburn.


We took in an Auburn baseball game. I am telling you right now----it was wonderful to be back at a sporting event especially baseball. The weather was perfect. I enjoyed every minute of it. We were spaced out so our seats were down by left field. Again, it was just perfect.
I put my phone away and just soaked up the feelings. I had Jeff take two pictures for the blog.

Proof I was there.


I had told the kids they had the weekend off:) Actually Lindsay had her in-laws for the weekend, so it worked out well.

I ate lunch with them today and got the sweetest gift from them. Lindsay found this on Etsy. I have the digital link to size it however I want. It is just so thoughtful.



It is our family of dogs. Sally and Murphy on the left were black and white Springers. The only thing she couldn't do was make Murphy's butt look large. He had an extra large ham. Then Lucy and Gus are liver (aka -brown) Springer Spaniels and then Miss Lemony our Golden. What you can't see in this picture is that the coloring is correct for the black and brown ones. All but Gus have earned their angel wings and how appropriate that they are all sitting on a dock. 

Of course, I teared up. It is just so perfect.

I will close out with sharing a good book. Don't you love it when you actually read a book that is good and it leaves you with so many thoughts? This one did. I had to spend some time this morning just writing down some of those thoughts it had me pondering. A Land Remembered by Patrick D. Smith.
It is probably not for everyone, but I told my kids it should be required reading for Florida residents. It is historical fiction and as good a book for telling the story of Florida as I ever read. I taught Florida History for many moons and loved it. The scenario with the mosquitos brought to life what a textbook can't. 
It begins in 1863 and ends in 1968 (well, it actually had its beginning in 1968 and I had to reread the first chapter at the end). It brings a family from Georgia to Florida hoping to stay out of the Civil War. It follows them through three generations and has all locations and historical events accurately placed in geography and time. The final generation would have been born similarly to my great granddaddy Byrd. I have really thought lately of how much he went through in his lifetime. One of the wisest and most wonderful Godly men I knew. 

Not sure it would interest just anyone, but I do love history and I do love Florida so it was a win win. Paul Allen had put me on it. Katie had read it too and said I should read. Lindsay is currently reading. It was a book that started out somewhat slow and I felt no need to rush, but of course after 2/3s I wanted to rush but I forced myself to continue the slow pace to absorb the lessons in it.





That is it for now. I will share some stitching maybe soon. Oh ---one more thing. I really need to update my sidebar, but oh well. And Blogger is making me so mad...taking away some features such as subscribe by mail and it is so hard to do some things that used to be so easy. ALL THAT to say...Leslie Anne over at her blog has written some good articles lately. Her feed doesn't renew in my blog roll, nor can I even comment on her posts now. She is working on all of it. I loved her posts "Are Manners Gone with the Wind?" and "Grateful". You will have to scroll down for them. 

See ya later alligator,
Sandy



Tuesday, May 4, 2021

Nothing New Under the Sun

 and that's good with me. A boring day is a good one or at least I think so. I get to do my usual things and no crazy stuff happening.

That is about it lately. I have been puttering in my flowers, a little stitching, a little reading and a good bit of deep cleaning. What is about spring that shows all the dust you thought you got because you are pretty neat? The sun is shining in these days and has made me pull out the cleaning cloths. That is about it for around here.

We did take the boat out Saturday. The Billy Bowlegs festival is usually in June but they moved it up to May this year. It didn't have a big turn out at all. That was probably good for the locals but I am not sure if it had the intended dreams. I think it was great for downtown stores. The festival involves a pirate ship with Captain Bowlegs arriving at the Landing and taking over the city for a week from the mayor. IT will be complete with all sorts of activities and a parade. We took Tucker to see the pirates arriving. It was not in the usual pirate ship. I have no clue what happened with that. They arrived in three of the tourist boats. Tucker loved it. He was not afraid of the cannon fire at all.

We tried to pose.

The party boats arriving with the pirates and cannon fire.


We then went out into the bay for a little stroll and saw the party boat that is a pirate ship. Lindsay is looking at doing this for his birthday in October. We will see.


That is about all the excitement around here. 

Pelicans have been visiting the docks. I wish I were good at zooming in and photographing, but oh well.



Do you spy two pelicans on this neighbor's dock?

And there was one on this neighbor's dock too. 


Gus was just checking them out too. 
Jeff has planted a salsa garden hoping for some success. He loves to make salsa each weekend. I love it with my black bean chips which have become my favorites. There is cilantro, jalapeƱos and tomatoes in the buckets. The cilantro and jalapeƱos will produce very well. Tomatoes are questionable. He has been reading and hopes to correct some problems of the past.


There are some small ones on there, so we will see.


We are going to Auburn for the weekend. I told the kids they had the weekend off this year for Mother's Day. We are hoping to take in a baseball game. It seems like an eternity since we have been to a sporting event. I am just looking forward to the weekend away in Auburn.

Those April showers have brought in so many blooming flowers. The magnolia trees are popping with their beautiful blooms. Life is good if you turn off the news and look around at nature.

Enjoying May,
Sandy





Saturday, May 1, 2021

Some Stitching Finishes

 I finished Spring's Messenger by Scattered Seed Samplers. It turned out even cuter than I thought it would.


I stitched this on some 36 count raw linen I had in my stash. The model was stitched on 36 count but a lighter color. I am pleased though with the colors. I made only one change in the called for floss colors. It called for only 3011 on the leaves, but as I was pulling the colors out I noticed that 3012 was a tad lighter so I did some of the leaves in 3012. 

This would be cute finished up in a Priscilla style finish, but I don't have room in my home for anything else, so I did a simpler finish so that it can fit in more locations.


I just love this. I love birds. I love robins and their lovely blue eggs. I mean ---this is a Sandy piece.


Some rick rack I had in my stash along with a cute fabric also in my stash. 
This little birdie is going in the bird basket for now along with my other birds until it is time to pull out patriotic stitching. I will love it next year.

Oh, and two things happened in my bird watching this past week. I was in the circle playing with Tucker when he stayed with me one day and not 1 but 4 bluebirds came out in the circle and landed. They stayed a few minutes. I couldn't believe it. I have barely seen 1 in my life and 4 at one time. Incredible!

I had moved a bird bath up to the bed with the bottlebrush shrubs and I came back from a walk and came into the circle yesterday and a cardinal was enjoying some water in the bird bath. 

Both of these things just thrilled me....I am such a nerd.

While I was in a finishing state of mind on Friday, I pulled out the two Prairie School Santas from January and February and styled them up into ornaments. 

I love them in spite of my less than perfect finishing skills. 

Here is the Santa stitched in February.



The bells were a last minute thought, but I love them so I will be adding them to all of these stitches.

Here it is hanging on the hook I use to make cording on some shelves. Gonna be so cute this Christmas.


I might have had a little mishap with the one I did in January and I had to stitch it again in February. Just keeping it real here! 


I am not too sure about the ribbon on this one so it lightly attached. I will look for a little more muted blue satin ribbon next week.

They are done on 40 count. 




Here they are together. I just really like these. There may be more of these in the future.


That is for now.
I will be back to my heron next week.

We are headed out to see Captain Billy Bowlegs to land in Fort Walton Beach today. It is fun festive couple of weeks as the pirates take over the city. 

Arggghhh my friends,
Sandy