Saturday, January 14, 2017


The New Year of stitching has begun!  Tomorrow (if I can manage to hold off that long) we will post our first lesson in our Online Mystery Classes on a brand new project the Large Easter Rabbit from Brenda Stofft!

As I generally do, we will start with the sky and then come forward.

Additionally, we'll be gearing up to  post lessons for another newbie - a squeeze into the schedule - the funky Steampunk Fox!  He, too, is from Brenda Stofft.  He'll make his debut on February 15.

And we will continue in our series of the Pillow Collage, Robins Wreath and Santa's Rewards.

CUPCAKE CLASS ALERT!  Our canvas is a special paint contract and is larger than the one normally seen so be sure to get the proper canvas if ordering through your local needlepoint shop!  

In the background, as we can work in a few hours here and there, we are busily kitting up surprises for our wonderful Needles 'N Fins activities.  Our land tour for the Boston/Cape Cod area Have a Ball in Boston needs some help.  If we do not get enough participants to meet the agency's minimum then it may become just a dream.  But we are optimistically working ahead on the fantastic class that we will get to do as an exclusive debut when staying in Cape Cod.   This is a design from Osterville Needlepoint!

Wait until you see what we do to those shells - and those flip flops - and, - and, - and.

Party on the Po,  riverboat stitching cruise on the Po River in Italy, on the other hand, is holding its own.  We are still having people inquire regularly and signing up at a good pace.  One more laid the money on the line, so to speak this week, and four more are at the door wanting to try and take advantage of the early bird booking discount! So, my initial 'hope' that I could get 25 people interested has become looks like we are going to make at least 50+.  That would mean that I would need to have more canvases painted and kits put together for our exclusive design for the optional Class Kit for the cruise.

This piece was such fun to stitch and I can't wait to share it with the group.

Back in the real world, I just finished packing the kits for the TNNA Winter Market where I will be teaching.  It is in San Jose this year so that, for me, is a long flight.  I am needing to get together what I want to work on while on the plane and in the terminals between flights since I must always change planes when going to the West Coast - well, actually going almost anywhere from Lexington!

I am also putting together kits for the lovely Owls classes from JP Needlepoint that I will be teaching at the Blue Bonnet Retreat in Austin after I return from San Jose. 

I am so fortunate to be able to 'work' at what I love to do.  That does not mean it is not work and that does not mean that it does not get to be tiring.  But, so far, I never 'tire of it'.  A very dear friend cautioned me this past week that she feared that I was going to burn myself out.  So, I have promised myself that I will start to be much more selective with my choices.

I definitely love, love, love the Online Mystery Classes.  I have 'met' so many wonderful people.  I have learned that this media provides them an opportunity to dip into our world that they may not otherwise have. We are able to reach people that do not have the luxury of shops or guilds or stitching circles that many of us take for granted.  That is a wonderful experience.

I am amazed at the response for our Stitching Cruise!  We have another great one on the sidelines for 2018!  And it will likely be in the Fall time period also since this one has been so well received.  This has introduced us to a whole new set of stitchers!  While many have taken some of my Online Mystery Classes , and a few have been in face-to-face classes, most I have never met but through this Internet process.  But, great friendships have developed even though we have not heard each others voices or seen each other in person as yet.  It reminds me of the 'Pen Pal' days.  Did any of you have a pen pal?  It was a method of dreaming and reaching out and touching places and people that we would never be able to see or visit (at least in my neck of the woods and background) or trips that would never come to fruition.  That was a time when we had 'imagination' and were required to use imagination to entertain ourselves.  I believe that is why I still prefer to read a book first and make my own visuals before a movie comes out and brings to life someone else's imagination.  

Well, until we all actually meet face-to-face on these adventures we have been working  towards for a year or so, how many of us has had fun developing what we think someone is like?  We have the secret Facebook Page that is very active.  We are interacting with each other and have developed a closeness that is unreal.  My participants have the most wonderful attitude and open mindedness!  We cannot help but have a wonderful time once we all get together in Milan, Italy.  And think how that relationship is going to grow as we travel on down (or is it up) the Po going to Venice and visiting wonderful sites along the way. But until then I can still sit here and wonder 'is Sally short or tall, does Anne have dark hair, what about Jela, her profile presents a beautiful lady,  Susan has a lovely smile,  is anyone in our group quiet and reserved (lordy help them) because that does not appear to be the case at this point, what about the others that we don't get a sneak peek of them because of a different type profile picture so we cannot develop a fixed image of them?  WOW!

The non-stitchers will be wondering what on earth this crazy bunch of individuals is constantly laughing about and why are they so boisterous? (Yep, my classes are not quiet!)  These are a group of little ole ladies doing their knitting for gosh sakes!  Can't you just see the other people on the cruise who do not have a clue as to our craziness! Maybe we can get them to sign up for our trip next year, lol,  I LOVE IT!

Good gravy, I'm on a roll here - I better quit typing and get some work done.

Have a great week and remember to start the year by Stitching With a Smile!


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