More Black Belt Stitching Wizard Stuff

Sunday, October 31, 2004

Part 1 ... done!

Well part 1 of my 2nd Degree Black Belt test is done. Saturday I wrote my hour long test followed by the physical. This consisted of 6 minutes of skipping (my technique was admired by all), 250 sit-ups and 250 push-ups. Since it was raining cats and dogs we couldn't go do the run portion of the physical. So it got pushed back to today.

I'm very proud of my run this time around, I ran/walked 6.4 Km (that's 16 laps of the track folks!). I think I ran over half of it and I did it in just over an hour. I think that was much better than the 3.2 Km I had to do for my First Degree.

Now I can focus on next Sunday my technical test!

Friday, October 29, 2004

Studying, Not Stitching


I wish I could be stitching. But the pressure is on. Last weekend I really got a chance to escape and enjoy my retreat. This week has been hard work! All week long I have been studying and finishing off an essay. Tomorrow morning is the first part of my 2nd Degree Black Belt test in Taekwon-Do. I have been studying like mad for tomorrow's written test. Not only do I have a 1 hour written test I have a physical that consists of 250 sit ups, 250 push ups, 6 minutes of skipping and 16 laps of the track (6.4 km). Next Sunday will be the second and final portion where I will perform the technical portion of the test. Here I will either be promoted or fail.

This test has been so different from my 1st Degree. For my 1st I felt so prepared and that I knew everything so well. This time around I feel like despite all my reading and studying I'm not retaining anything. Wednesday night and Thursday night I finally got some direction from two class mates who have their 2nd degree and that has really helped me to focus and narrow my studying. I don't feel so panicked anymore.

Tomorrow is a big day!

Sunday, October 24, 2004

My Fall Retreat!

Back in March I signed up for the Cross Stitch Cupboard's 11th fall retreat. This was my first time going and boy was I excited when Friday the 22nd finally rolled around!

I was a good girl and went ahead an worked 1/2 a day before hopping in my car and zooming off to Gananoque (a little too fast if the cops had seen me!) I arrived at the Gananoque Inn at about 1:30 pm

I was able to check in to my room, my mystery room mate had not arrived yet! Once settling in, and picking my bed (great advantage to being there first!) I went to find the St. Lawrence Room where was the stitching room for the retreat. Well I didn't have far to go... You see that first unit on the white building on the left and the windowed room on the building on the right. Yup I had far to go! They must of known I was a keen stitcher!

I settled myself at a table in the St. Lawrence room and soon other stitchers started coming by and welcoming me to the retreat, obviously I was a newbie! Many of the women there had been going for the last 11 years! Maria a kind woman took me under her wing and made sure I knew what was going on and introduced me to her retreat pals. At 6pm it was time for wine and cheese... very nice wine and cheese! As we got into the lobby we were all given a name tag, not or own and had to go find the owner. Boy was that a challenge! The only people I did know was the staff at the CSC and Jeannette Douglas the weekend's guest instructor! After wine and cheese we all went and sat down to dinner. Boy were we spoilt when it came to food! Both Dinner and Lunch we received a menu with appetizer choices, three main course choices, and a dessert buffet! The main courses there was always a choice between a meat dish, a fish dish, and a vegetarian dish. You'll not go hungry at this retreat! After dinner it was back down to the St Lawrence Room for stitching until I couldn't keep my eyes open!

The piece I decided to work on Friday was Chatelaine's Mystery VI, I figured beading was something I could easily pick up and put down. Boy did my Mystery cause quite a stir. I think I spent more time showing it to each woman who came by and talking about it than actually beading. But by 10:30 I had finally finished the beading on part 4 which is something I wanted to get accomplished this weekend!

My Room mate arrived a little before dinner and I was relieved to find it was someone I did know, a member from guild. We chatted a bit before turning in, because we had class Saturday morning!

Saturday morning I was greeted with a gorgeous sunrise!

Breakfast was buffet style and once again delicious! By 9am it was time for my first class of the weekend which was Ottawa Sampler with Jeannette Douglas

As with the class I took from Jeannette last year she was an excellent instructor! The piece is beautiful and as usual full of creative stitches and great specialty fibers. This was a full day class, and I was lucky at lunch to sit and share it with Jeannette.

The afternoon turned out to be gorgeous!

Saturday's dinner was quite an affair, it was a dress up dinner! We had everything from dress clothes to gowns to tiaras! We were entertained by a piano player as we ate! Dinner was followed by door prizes and goodie bags! Also we could view the stitcher's pride gallery! Once the pomp and ceremony of the evening were over, I took that long walk to my room and got into my jammies for some more stitching! If I'm gonna stitch I'm going to be comfortable! Saturday evening was spent working on Dragon's Tea Party from Dragon Dreams.

Sunday, today I woke up to it being a little gloomy out. It also matched the way I felt because it was my last day at retreat. Many women were staying on until Monday but I just don't have that luxury with my job. This morning we were encouraged to vote for our favorite bookmark, there was a challenge to stitch a bookmark that showed your passion for stitching. I rose up to the challenge and came up with my own design.

At 9am I settled myself in the St. Lawrence room for Jeannette's Sunday morning class, Autumn Tree of Life Scissor fob. I was able to finish it by lunchtime!

While everyone rushed up for lunch at noon Jeannette and I stayed behind for a bit and had a nice quiet chat without everyone else around. It was nice to have a moment of peace and quiet before going for lunch together! Lunch was a big affair today, there was Ellen's annual retreat song, this year it was "Stitching Stash Blues", followed by announcing the book mark challenge winners... I didn't even get in the top 3 (pout). Then the big door prizes, one of which was a free retreat next year... I didn't win any of those either (pout). After lunch I took a walk to a small museum nearby to check out a little needlework exhibition then hit the main drag to find most of the stores closed. But I did manage to find a shop that sold Ice Dragonlets so I bought one for my collection!

Then it was time to go home....

Here's my favorite picture of the weekend ... (Jeannette and I with my finished fob)

First... a Model Stitching HD and an Ornament

Well lets get the fun and quick stuff out of the way first.

For this year's CSNF in Toronto I stitched a model for Dragon Dreams called Magic In my Needle, an introduction to stitching over two class. I have to say I had a lot of fun with this piece!

c2004 Dragon Dreams

I also managed to stitch my 2nd ornament for October at the beginning of the week, this was a blackwork intro class taught at my guild.

Friday, October 22, 2004

Its Finally Here!

Back in March when I heard that Jeannette Douglas was going to be the guest instructor at the Cross Stitch Cupboard's annual fall retreat I managed to grab the last spot! Boy that was a long time ago and for ages it seemed that the weekend of October 22nd was years away!

Finally its here! And I'm excited!

I got to meet Jeannette last year and take one of her classes, she was a great teacher and had such a wonderful personality. I really wanted to take one of her classes again!

So it turns out she's at the retreat this year and she has designed just for us a special Ottawa Sampler, the class I will be taking on Saturday.

We're staying in the gorgeous 1000 islands Region in an Inn I've told is just fantastic! Every thing is paid for at this point, my room, all meals, and classes, etc. So there are no money worries, no budgeting. And well I won't go over budget either.

So I'll catch you on the flip side... Sunday and I'm sure I will have pictures to share!

Saturday, October 16, 2004

Show Your Love of Stitching

That was my challenge. Next weekend I'm off to the Cross Stitch Cupboard's annual fall retreat for the first time. We were encouraged to design a bookmark to express our love for stitching. I've done just that! Its bright, and a little whitty, and nothing too fancy. I'm proud of it!

But I'm not going to show it to you until after the retreat is over. You never know, the competition may be reading this ;-)

Friday, October 15, 2004

Ahhh Small Finishes

I always like to have something small on the go, that way between the large projects you always feel like you've accomplished something. Some of those large projects takes months! You can't go too long without a Happy Dance!

I've been waiting on some supplies I hadn't had time to pick up to finish an ornament. Once again I'm going to just post a link. There was a mix-up with my Ornament RR, Group 7 so I've had to change my selection. So Click HERE to see my new selection. Its very pretty!

On Wednesday part 1b of Mini Mystery G was released and I finally got it finished tonight. I probably would of gotten it done last night but I came home with a killer migraine, the kind that puts me out of commission.

Mini Mystery G - Part 1b

Thursday, October 14, 2004

Two Weeks Worth of Stitching Blogger's Question Of The Week

You can tell when life gets busy for me... I don't blog as often! So here is two weeks worth of Stitching Blogger Questions...

Last weeks Question :
Thread organization: plastic bobbins, yes or no? How do you organize your threads?

Hmmm well how I organize depends on the threads. I always have one complete set of DMC floss on bobbins in floss boxes. But then all the extra DMC I've had left over from model stitching I keep in floss-a-way baggies on a ring. I try to use these first before I use what's on my bobbins. Specialty fibers I also keep in floss-a-way baggies. They're organized on rings, one for cottons, one for silks, one for Rainbow Galleries threads, and one for whatever doesn't fit the other categories.

This weeks question :

You've just been given a $100 gift certificate to buy anything cross stitch or needlework related - what would you spend it on right now?

Hmmm I think lately I've been on a fiber/fabric kick. Or at least I've been wanting to buy some! I could easily spend that money on some hand dyed fabrics, Sugar Maple Fabrics's Burnt Papyrus is one of them for sure! As for fibers I looove Gloriana Silk overdyed threads and would buy a bunch of those!

Sunday, October 10, 2004

Grrrr Technology... But Look I Can Share Piccys Now!

Okay I don't think technology and I are friends this week. After not being able to access my webspace for over half the week and now I just typed up a nice long blog for you only to loose it all because when I clicked post it gave me a page not found message!

So lets try this again...

I finished Lanarte's Duck. This is the third I've stitched in a series of very cute barnyard animals. Its stitched over one using tent stitch.

I finally finished Jeannette Douglas's Take Time To Quilt - Summer. This piece has been my Achillies Heel lately! Now don't get me wrong the chart and instructions were perfect... it was just my "interpretation" of them! LOL. Lets see... first I couldn't remember how to count, so while putting in the boxes I had to frog twice. Then when I was stitching one box's contents I thought I knew the pattern... wrong. So I just kept going on with what I had started. The next box's contents... got my colours mixed up... I left it anyhow. Then it came down to the beads. When you've got somewhere from 100-200 packages of Mill Hill Beads you'd think you would have two colours. Wrong! I didn't have either colour the chart called for. So I had to wait until I could get to the Cross Stitch Cupboard on Wednesday. So may I present to you.... Take Time to Quilt - Summer

Thursday I finally made it to my frame supplier to get the molding and mats I needed to get Celtic Heart framed. Its a gift for a Wedding Todd and I are going to tomorrow. Talk about procrastination! I stretched the piece and cut the mats on Thursday and made the frame and did assembly on Saturday

I got Part 10 of Chatelaine's Mystery VI finished! We're into the home stretch now!

Lots Of Piccys to Share!

Finally I can share my Happy Dances with you! Since about Wednesday I've been unable to access my personal web space. My ISP seems to have finally resolved the problem!

So lets rewind to Tuesday of this past week where I finished Lanarte's Duck. This is stitched over one using two strands of floss with the tent stitch. These barnyard animals are so cute! This is the third I've stitched in this series.

Wednesday I finally finished up Jeannette Douglas's Take Time to Quilt - Summer. If you've followed my Blog you'll know that this piece has been my Achilles heel! I had a number of counting problems... then I would get colours mixed up, not follow directions properly, and so on. Then came the beads. When you've got more than 100 different colours of Mill Hill beads in your stash you'd think you'd have the two you need. Well I didn't!!! So I had to wait until Wednesday when I could pick them up at the Cross Stitch Cupboard. Without further ado, and no more headaches....

Then yesterday I got around to framing a piece I stitched for a wedding Todd and I are attending tomorrow (nothing like procrastination). I've already HD'ed this so I won't go into all the details. Here's Celtic Heart and I've done the framing, I'm very happy with the results!

And now up to date with today... I finished part 10 of Chatelaine's Mystery VI! We're finally reaching the home stretch with this (12 parts) here is a close-up of the bottom right hand corner.

Thursday, October 07, 2004

Webpage Frustrations!

Well, for the last couple of days I've been itching to share two Happy Dances with you. Alsas my ISP is having issues with our personal webspace so I've not been able to upload anything! Grrrr....

So you'll have to remain in suspense until then!!!

Sunday, October 03, 2004

A New Mini Mystery!

Last month Chatelaine's Mini Mystery F wrapped up, and I enjoyed the project so much that I splurged and signed up for Mini Mystery G. Mini G, is another design in the gemstone series, this time sapphire. I have to say the colours in this Mystery are gorgeous, including 24kt gold beads! Yummy!

Part 1a was released on Friday but between being exhausted on Friday and the Grand Opening TKD demo I was in Saturday I just couldn't get around to starting it. Today I decided to pick it up since part 1a looked like a quick stitch. And it was!

Here's Chatelaine's Mini Mystery G - Sapphire, part 1a

October Goals

Well I'm about 3 days behind but here is the September recap...

September Goals
  1. Finish Bandon Lighthouse - Done
  2. Finish Mini Mystery F - Done
  3. Finish Celtic Heart - Done
  4. Stitch 2 Christmas Ornaments - Done, actually did 3
  5. Wee Beasites RR - Done
  6. Model for Dragon Dreams - Done

Now I might not get as much done this month... its a very busy one!

October Goals

  1. Finish Take Time To Quilt - Summer
  2. Stitch up Mystery VI part 10
  3. Stitch up Mini Mystery G parts 1 a&b
  4. Stitch 2 Christmas Ornaments
  5. Stitch up bookmark design

I would almost have goal number one done, however I don't seem to have the necessary beads in my stash! I'm going to have to hit the Cross Stitch Cupboard this week. I'd go today, but Toodles has my car... he's gone fishing. It was also a close call with the floss on this one I had to go through my orts to find a couple of SNC Plum Honey to finish the border!

Finally Got That Ornie Finished!!!

Earlier in September I finished stitching up an ornament for a Round Robin that is starting this month. The idea is you stitch up an ornament and supply enough materials for everyone in the group to stitch your selection, everyone else dose the same... its a way to save on buying specialty fibers, embellishments, etc. I've been waiting on an embellishment to arrive from Australia! This week it finally did and just now I've finished it into a proper ornament.

So instead of posting the picture here in my Blog like I normally do this time you'll have to follow a link. So if you're in Ornament Round Robin Group 7 with me look at your own risk if you wanted to keep my selection a surprise!

Dani's Ornament RR Group 7 Selection