Monday, October 25, 2010

Progress is progress...I guess, I guess!

Hello dear blogging buddies!

I hope that everyone had a fabulous fall weekend!  I had a wonderful time at home.  It was the first weekend  I have spent completely at home in months and it was glorious.  I cleaned and stitched and loved every minute of it!  It was difficult getting up to go to work this morning but it was made easier by the fact that we only have a half day of school today.  It was a teacher workday to begin with but my principal decided to give us leave at 12:00!  We have had a very difficult and long couple of weeks.  I don't teach in a "normal" school (if there is such a thing!,) I teach in a school that is located within a psychiatric hospital for children and adolescents. October is a very busy time because we have numerous admissions.  We have been at capacity for several weeks and we are all feeling a little crazy!  Our principal decided to give us a half day off just to say "Thanks for doing what you do!"

I have had several friends ask "Why is October so busy?"  Well, we are not sure but we think it is because generally schools have been in session for over a month and children with mental issues begin to present their abnormal behaviors more frequently after the few beginning weeks.  Those of you who teach school (or just have kids in school) know that there is a "honeymoon period" at the beginning of every school year.  It lasts from two to four weeks.  If there is a student who is possibly struggling with a mental illness/behavioral illness, it usually takes about four to six weeks before any serious intervention is made.  Students with serious mental issues (many are behavior related, such as oppositional defiant disorder) are then sent to the center where I work.  It is operated by the state and is an acute care facility.  Students live at the center (similar to a hospital) so that they can receive around the clock psychiatric care.  They are also provided with a true school experience so that they do not get behind in their studies.  I teach teach World History and middle school social studies and some elementary social studies.  So, I work with students in grades K-12.  In short, I teach the kids that nobody else can momentarily deal with. We try to stabilize children so that they can return home and continue moving forward.  The job can be stressful but in the end it can be very rewarding. 
Ok, enough about work...time for some stitching!  Here is my progress on Richmond Sampler (Anne Maria Clarke)...

I am almost finished with the over one verse...thank heavens I only have about three to four lines left.  I have Anne Maria Clarke's name still to stitch (on the left above the birds) but I have decided to wait till the end to "sign" it for her! 

I just love this sampler and even though I am sure that I will still be stitching it a year after starting it (February 2010,) I am happy to be comfortably stitching with Miss Clarke.  When I find myself wishing her finished (which I must admit, is quite often) I go to visit Margaret over at Days of a Sampler Lover.  She is currently stitching the beloved Richmond Sampler as well and making significant progress.  I have thoroughly enjoyed watching Margaret stitch this sampler and I have also enjoy dreaming that her progress is MY progress!

The birds on the left are looking a little lonely, they are supposed to be flying over the house.  Guess I should help them out and start on the house next?

I also made some progress on my Mom's Christmas present, La D Da's "Bushel and Peck."  This is a special piece for me...my mother used to sing the "Bushel and a Peck" song to me as a child.  At the end of the song, when she sang "hug around the neck" she would grab me, give me a huge hug and shower me with kisses. 

I am 34 years old and still feel warm and fuzzy inside when I hear that song!  So, when I saw the model stitched at my LNS, I knew that I had to stitch it for my mother.  I am using a different fabric than what is called for and different threads (they escape me now) but I like what I have stitched so far.

I also started another project, Cinnamon Stick Christmas IX "Santa and the Merry Animals" by Homespun Elegance. 

Teri, the owner of my LNS has several of these model Santas in her shop.  I have always loved them and decided this year I would stitch one.  Santa can be stitched on linen as a framed piece or he can be stitched on 7ct. Klostern as a 3-D free-standing Santa.  I am stitching on the 7ct Klostern with the hopes of finishing him to stand freely.  So far, I have only finished his mittens.

I am stitching with DMC since this Santa EATS thread.  I hope to have more to show later.

Well, thanks to everyone for stopping by and making my day!  Your wonderful comments mean so much!  Oh, and a big thank you to everyone who commented about my Clark's Spool Cabinet.  Yes, I realize that I am VERY lucky to have one and I promise, once I get her polished up, I will share more pictures!  Happy Stitching!

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Back from another world...

Hello my dear blogging buddies!

My, how long it has been!  I apologize for my extreme tardiness in posting.  All I can say is life just sometimes gets in the way.  I started my new teaching job (love it!) and am still trying to adjust to my new schedule.  I have been wearing my teacher hat late into the evenings and unfortunately, my stitching has taken a back seat. 

Since I no longer have to work weekends, I have been happily attending estate auctions around the area.  I was very lucky to attend an auction that had this beautiful piece...


Yes, that is an original Clark's Company Spool Cabinet.   Was I lucky to be the winning bidder or what?  I was so excited (still am!) and have been working on "sprucing it up."  Really all it needed was a good washing with some Murphy's Oil Soap.  I have now taken to oiling the outside with good ol' furniture oil.  Once I polish the brass knobs, she will look almost new! 

Although I have been busy with school and estate auctions, I have been able to put in a few stitches here and there over the past couple of months.  Here is my progress on Richmond Sampler...ignore the water on the right side...I was trying to blot out a small spot...

Believe it or not, when I have a moment to spare, I try to read the blogs.  I have been pea green with envy watching Margaret's progress on the same sampler over at Sampler Lover's Blog.  This is such a beautiful piece and I am thrilled that Margaret is stitching it too.  Watching her reminds me that yes, I can finish it too!  I just love the Richmond Sampler and have been doing a little research on the young lady who stitched the magnificent original.  Anne Maria Clarke was from Virginia and is buried in Richmond.  I hope to have more interesting tidbits on Miss Clarke soon...I do enjoy getting to know the young ladies whose stitching I love to reproduce.

Again, I apologize for being absent for so long.  I have numerous emails to send out and even more blogs to visit and comment on!  I promise to catch up and I will enjoy every minute!  Thank you all for stopping by and I love hearing from you!