Huzzah! Hooray! Yippee!  Yee Haw!!  Okay I know you got the point already that I am exited about something.  I finally got a new laptop so I can blog again, and read blogs again because lets face it, blogging on a smart phone stinks.  My old laptop has been on the fritz for the past year so my hubby decided to buy me a new one for my recent birthday.  I have certainly missed being able to blog and I look forward to getting back into it. 

I have been keeping my stitching fingers busy since I last posted.  I was able to finish my seaside sampler from the Sampler Girl and can’t wait to have it framed.  I stitched it to commemorate my favorite vacation of all time; in 2009 to the Outer Banks of North Carolina.  It was just the four of us, my husband, my children and I. We had such a great time and I will be reminded of those great memories every time I look at this sampler.


I have also been working on my Mary Victor reproduction sampler that I started in 2010.  I actually purchased this sampler as a kit in Colonial Williamsburg, we spent a few days there before we took our favorite beach trip that I mentioned.  I want to finish it more than anything because I am quite sick of looking at it.  Does anyone else get stuck in those slumps where you are just sick of the piece or pieces your working on?  I know I could just start something else but I really hate to have more than 3 going at any given time as it makes me feel like I’m just starting more things that I will never finish and I like that feeling of completion.

Just the other day I picked up my Blackbird Designs, “Where My Heart Blooms”, that I finished way back in 2011.  Patty at Village Sampler in St.Albans WV did a great job framing it.  I really love this frame!!

Well I hope Spring is off to a good start for all of you, it’s been a little chilly here the past few days but it’s better than the 90 degree weather that I am sure is headed my way very soon.  Blessings to you all.


Catching Up

Wow!!  Has it really been 5 months since I last posted?  It really doesn’t seem like it has been that long but I guess time flies when your having fun.

The past 5 months have been a whirlwind for me.  Just shortly after my last post we took a much needed trip to Avon, North Carolina for some sun, sand and surf.  We had a nice time and even stopped for a night in Williamsburg Virginia on our way home.  I can’t seem to get enough of that place!

Not long after our beach trip we lost power for several days due to the Derecho storms that passed through our area.  My daughter and I didn’t hang around long for that, we packed up the car and headed to my mother-in-laws in North Carolina for a visit.  We really did make lemonade out of lemons because we had a really nice visit and got to go to Ikea for the first time.  Unfortunately my husband had to stay behind to hold down the fort and go to work.  I think we were without power for a total of 4 nights and we sustained minimal damage.  We lost half of a pear tree, had a water leak in the bedroom and lost a refrigerator full of food.  It could have been much worse and was for many people.

As I told you in my last post I finally finished my “It is Well” sampler.  I entered it in the West Virginia state fair and won a blue ribbon in the sampler category.  I was so thrilled, I nearly squealed when I saw it had won.  I am still attending sampler club and learning new things but I have yet to start a new sampler.  I have some ideas but I am just not sure what I want to do so I am taking a break from sampler creating for now.


I have finished some small things and I am nearing the end of my Seaside Memories Sampler by The Sampler Girl.  I have three other projects in the works right now, “Merry Christmas to Ewe” by Brenda Gervais, still working on the Mary Victor sampler from the Examplarery (which I don’t think I will ever finish), and I just started on the “American Sampler” from Cross-Stitch & Needlework magazine from March 2011, which is going to be a challenge for me.  Not to mention I am dying to start “Hallow Wee House” by Chessie & Me, I love these little kits!  They are so fun to stitch!

Joyous Heart-ornament & fob (Homespun Elegance)

Glory House (Chessie & Me), Winter Squirrel (Victoria Sampler), A Little Love (Lizzie Kate), Joyous Heart-ornament &fob (Homespun Elegance)

I sat down to stitch for a little while last evening and realized that I could not find my favorite pair of Dovo Hardanger scissors (pictured above).  I started thinking about where I had been and the last time I saw them and remembered I was at the Toyota dealership getting my oil changed.  I always take something to stitch when I have to wait.  Sure enough, I called and they had my scissors!!  I guess I need to make something to tie them around my neck because apparently the fob didn’t keep me from loosing them.  I must be more careful with my expensive scissors.  Big huge thank you to whoever found them and turned them in!!!  

I hope everyone is warm and safe.  My heart is so heavy for everyone who has been affected by the recent hurricane, super-storm.  So many here in my state of WV are suffering without electricity in freezing temperatures.  In our higher elevations roofs are collapsing due to the heavy snow.  We were very blessed, we only lost power for one day this time and didn’t have as much snow as others around us, even 6 miles down the highway they had several inches more.  Please remember everyone that was in the path of this horrendous storm and keep them in your prayers.

Well hopefully I won’t wait so long to check back in with you all.  Now that summer and volleyball season are over I hope to be able to get some stitching done as well as some blogging.  Until then everyone take care!!

It Is Finished!!

 Time has just flown by the past few months!  I have been a busy girl lately, families have a way of keeping you that way.  I have been trying to keep up with my blog reading however I have not had the spare time to post anything on my blog.  Not to mention I really haven’t had anything to blog about.  The only stitching I have worked on since March has been the Bargello section of my “It Is Well” sampler, and there is only so much I can say about that.  I can tell you by the time I finished the Bargello section I was tired of it, but it was well worth it! 

Completed Sampler with Bargello at the bottom.

I am so happy to tell you that my Sampler Club, “It Is Well” sampler is finished!!!!!!  I finished it last night and dropped it off to be framed this morning.  It was kind of bitter sweet as it has been my constant companion the past year and 3 months.

The two bands between the fish and the verse were redone. 

I would have been done sooner but I decided to pull out two bands I had done in the beginning that I wasn’t happy with.  I think it turned out quite well and I can’t wait to see it framed and hanging on my wall.  Now to figure out what to do for my next Sampler Club Sampler!  I have a few ideas floating around and I can tell you it will not be near as big as this one was.  I hope you are all having a wonderful summer so far!

This wonderful gift was on my doorstep the other day from Mrs.Meyers Clean Day.  I won a bucket in their Bucket Brigade giveaway.  Their products are fabulous!  Thank you so much Mrs.Meyers, your cleaning products are the best!

Oh what a bad blogger I have been!  It seems I have been neglecting more than my blog, I have also been neglecting my stitching.  I just can’t find the time to stitch lately as things have been a bit busy around my little cottage.  I have also been helping my husband a bit with his blog, he recently went back to work after 5 months of recuperating from shoulder surgery and he asked if I would write a blog post for him from time to time.  I think that is funny because I am not a writer and his blog is about gardening which I know absolutely nothing about.   You can check out what I wrote here and here, so far I have just written two posts for him, hopefully I can continue to help.  Although I am at a total loss as to what I should write about next.   

I am happy to report to you that my baby Robin is alive and well, I see him every day!  He likes to hang out in my back yard.  I even woke up the other morning to him sitting on top of the privacy fence right outside my bedroom window chirping his head off.   I can’t tell you how thrilled I am that this little fellow is doing so well and it is wonderful to see him fly!

I did a little antiquing this past weekend, I have to be very careful when I do this as my small cottage is busting at the seems and I always seem to find something I can’t live without.  I had to make a few rule’s several years ago for my husband and I to follow while antiquing (he is worse than me).         
1. You have to really love the item, if you think you are going to kick yourself for the next 10 years
about not buying it you should go ahead and buy it.
2.  You can’t buy it if you don’t have a place to put it.
3.  If you don’t have a use for it or a place for it you don’t buy it.

Thus far these simple rules have kept us from being hoarders of antiques and such.  So while I was on my little antique outing I did find a few things that I could definitely put to good use.  I found a little sewing stand to sit beside my stitching chair, it has a little tray inside for my scissors and tools and a place to put some of my projects.

 I also found two little canvas bags that you can stitch on with two bags full of floss, at $5.00 a piece I thought they were a steal!  I can’t wait to stitch something on them.

Well I must sign off now, I have a house to clean and a mountain of laundry to do, so that maybe I can get some stitching in this weekend!  I hope you all have a wonderful weekend!!

The Birds Among Us

I had fully intended to post some photos of the baby robins in my tree last week.  We started with four and after a cold front moved through with temps dropping into the 20’s we were left with one little bird.  I really didn’t think this little fellow would make it through the night Wednesday, he was lethargic and breathing very heavy.  But his mother knew best and didn’t give up on him, she stayed in the nest with him through the night and as the temps began to rise on Thursday morning I noticed the little lone Robin standing on the side of his nest.  He was a sight for sore eyes, he stood on the sides of the nest all day and chirped while his mother returned every little bit to strengthen him with worms.  They spent one last chilly night in their little nest in the pear tree in my front yard.

 The next morning the nest was empty.  I wondered what had become of my little friend, that is until I took my dog out and she discovered a visitor in the back yard.  It took everything I had to keep that little Robin from being my dogs first bird hunt!  The dog chased the little robin back into the front yard where mother Robin was waiting with food but after mother flew off the little Robin tried to follow her by crossing a busy street in front of my house.  Here I was in the street in my pajamas trying to get him to safety.  This little fellow had me a nervous wreck all day that he was either going to be eaten by an animal, hit by a car or a lawn mower.  He was all over the place, back and forth across the street and in and out of my yard and the neighbors yard.  I lost track of him some time Friday afternoon but I would hear his chirps from time to time so I was just sure he was okay.  My hope is that he finally took flight.

With all the bird drama going on around here along with my other daily duties I haven’t been able to get any stitching done since Wednesday.  I have been spending quite a bit of time in the back yard with my energetic English Springer Spaniel playing Frisbee.  My poor girl misses having her daddy around so much after he returned to work after 5 months of recouperating from shoulder surgery.  They spent a lot of time outside while he was home working on the garden.  I guess I am going to have to start stitching outside.  I hope everyone had a great weekend, I will leave you with a few pictures of my little darlings I took the other day.

Maple and Daphne, friend or foe?  Maple just wants to play and Daphne just wants to be left alone.

My beautiful Daphne and her cute pink nose.  She loves to be photographed, and she is very photogenic.  I think she knows she is beautiful.

Hello and welcome to my new followers, I am so glad you are following my little blog.  I hope everyone had a wonderful Easter!  We sure did, we started our day at church, had a delicious dinner, gorgeous weather and of course after that I fell asleep and didn’t get up until 7:30 P.M., I must have been tired.

 I did get a little stitching done this weekend, my progress is very slow on my “It Is Well” sampler.  I am almost done, I have about 4 more rows of straight stitches to add to my Bargello, and I have to redo a few rows at the top below the alphabet that I am not happy with and then I will be finished.  I would love to drop this off to Patty @ Village Sampler by Friday!!  It’s not looking promising since today I haven’t picked up a needle.  But I have plans to work some tonight, hubby is picking up pizza on the way home and I am going to stitch away and watch the voice.  I love to stitch while watching television, sometimes I get lucky and my daughter, joins me.

Progress on “It Is Well”

There are so many pretty flowers blooming here at Maple Cottage, I took several pictures yesterday to share with you.

Bleeding Heart
Japanese Lilac

Lilly Of The Valley

I hope you have enjoyed my spring blooms, next time I will share some pictures of the new babies living in my tree.

I have been catching up on my blog reading this evening.  What I have been reading makes me sad and angry.  I am sure most of you have read about the copyright issues that are plaguing the needlework industry.  I am not a designer just a gal who loves needlework, and I can’t imagine how frustrating this is for the designers. These designers are artists and their works are being copied and stolen.  They put a lot of time, money and effort into the designs they create and they are not making loads of money doing it, really if you added up their time, expenses and supplies they aren’t making anything.  

I am sure there are some who are ignorant to the fact that when they copy and share a chart it is illegal, but once you are informed that what you are doing is illegal you need to stop.  there are others who don’t care that they are stealing, as long as they are getting something for nothing and getting by with it they will continue.  Some people don’t have a conscience.  Wonder though how they would react if they pulled up to their favorite needle work shop only to discover that it has closed for good?  Or they visited an online needlework distributor only to find that they are no longer in business, and how sad would they be if their favorite designer decided to stop designing? All the while they contributed to their demise by downloading pirated copies of designs they should have purchased from the designer, an LNS or an online retailer. 

 I read in one article that one of the excuses people give is that they can’t afford the charts.  That is seriously lame!  Most charts I have purchased are around $8.00, and I spent almost that much on my lunch yesterday at Chix Filet without batting an eye.  If a person really can’t afford to buy charts and loves to stitch there are many designers who have down loadable freebies on their sites.  Truth is they want something for nothing, that is sadly how our society is, everyone wants a handout.  But I’m not going to get on my bandbox about that.

So next time your mom, neighbor, sister or your BFF wants to copy that gorgeous design your stitching, tell her no that she needs to purchase her own or better yet buy her one yourself and support the needle arts industry so it will be around for years to come.  And for crying out loud don’t ever download charts off the Internet from some free chart website, not only is it stolen but you don’t know where that thing has been either!  But hey if you are brazen enough to steal stuff then I guess you deserve to have a computer full of Trojan’s (virus’s that is).  And keep in mind that when you copy something that is copyrighted, whether you give it to your neighbor or upload it to a website, you are breaking the law, it was sold to you for your personal use and you don’t have a license to reproduce or distribute it even if it’s a pdf design it is still copyrighted.  Lets all do our part to support our needle arts industry, and please support your local LNS when possible if you are lucky enough to have one.  I have two in my area, the one I shop at is Village Sampler in St.Albans WV, I am so thankful to be able to shop and stitch there and I can’t imagine it not being there.  Village Sampler just celebrated it’s 25th birthday on my birthday March 25th, looking forward to many more birthdays with my favorite shop. 

Goodnight all, hope you all have a Happy Easter!!

Here are some more articles you can read on this subject: