Saturday, January 5, 2019

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Okay 2018 is History!  Let's meet the new year head on!  I'm ready (I think)!

I'm not much for making resolutions.  For me it looks as if I am setting myself up for failure if I do not 'accomplish' what I resolved.  And if I did so, top of the list would be health but hey I just take it a day at a time.  I have good intentions of moving around more (ain't gonna happen when I sit on my butt stitching all day), losing weight - LOL we know how far that one gets, and getting outside more - that one might have some possibilities. There are 2 things that I am wanting to focus on for now.  One is the upcoming Mediterranean Stitching Memories Cruise and the second is the Online Class Agenda.

I have been so fortunate to have repeaters on my cruises to the point that now it feels even more like my friends and I are planning our next runaway.  But I am not surprised at all because that is what we stitchers do.  We become a sisterhood.  We understand either other like no one else can.  Has nothing to do with our background, upbringing, or any other demographics.  It is all about our passion for the beauty, satisfaction (sometimes frustration) and results of needlework.  Doesn't even have to be the same medium - can be needlepoint, cross stitch, knitting, crocheting, beading, etc., etc. etc. Maybe instead of saying 'needlework' I should say 'creating.' There is just something about it.  I cannot put my finger on it and I don't need too.  It is just there.  So what better way to spend our fun time traveling than with those that have a strong common interest?

I'm excited about this next cruise because I've never been to any of the places beyond Italy for this one.  Hubby was in the Mediterranean when he was a Marine in the US Military.  He is funny because he talks about being excited to see these places again but like the French Rivera it is nothing like his memories from the Korean War.  But it is fun to see his amazement.

I'm also excited to be on our ship.  She appears to be spectacular.

I make no secret of the fact that I do not care for the humongous ocean liners - and they just keep getting bigger and bigger.  But they are fine for those who like them.  My passion is the riverboats so I am reaching a little for this slightly larger vessel so that we may explore the Sea.  A similar vessel is required whenever we are able to plan our Alaska journey. This will be a good trial run for me.

The Azamara will still allow us the intimacy that I so cherish with our group adventures.  Everywhere we look we should be able to spot a familiar face - whether they are in our specific group or they are just traveling on the same journey.  And speaking of journey - look at these ports of call!

If you have not yet done so, take the time to go over on Needles 'N Fins Stitching Adventure Facebook page and read the extensive description of possible excursions that Liz shared with us!  Wow!  But, wanna know something?  I am also perfectly happy to just enjoy what is handy to us just when we get off the ship.  So I know that no mater what - the weather, how I feel, the area, etc. - I will have plenty to entertain me.  But those who know me also know that I am perfectly content to go up on deck, pull out my needlework and just enjoy the day.

We personally have chosen to add a few days to our adventure.  Although we have been to Rome a couple of times, our daughter and SIL have not. So we will be spending a couple nights extra in Rome.  I love Rome.  One reason is because I feel so comfortable there.  We find it easy to navigate (for old folks) and there is always something of wonder to feast the eyes upon. Did I share with you that we walked around Treva Fountain 3 times before we found it?

We are also taking a couple extra days in Barcelona. I don't remember if I'm doing one or two but I just didn't feel that getting off the ship and heading to the airport would do the area justice since I had not been there before.  So that is something for me to look forward to also.  I think if I could only do one of the extensions mine would be Barcelona.  The main reason is because it seems so many other touring possibilities hit Rome if we want to return there again in the future.

My biggest challenge right now in front of me is getting our stitching piece designed.  With the major holidays behind me (almost) I think that I will be making tremendous strides towards completion on this front.

So if you are not a member of the Needles 'N Fins Stitching Adventures group please consider joining us.  Heaven only knows what we will end up sharing over there!

Just as a bit of information for those of you who are in Needles 'N Fins, once you register for a cruise you are invited to participate in a secret group specific to that cruise only.  Invitations have been sent to those registered at this time.  The group name is Mediterranean Stitching Memories 2019.  Let me know if I have overlooked getting an invitation out to you.  Some are discovering that I do not have their FB email but a different one.  So it could be that I do not have the proper email address to get your invitation to you.


Next on my priority list is the Online Mystery Class Agenda for 2019.  This is in good shape!  Classes are lined up.  People are registering.  And, most importantly, stitching is progressing almost feverishly.  I love the items my participants have chosen for me to feature and I am most impatient to get them stitched.  That's where this issues of having more hands would come in handy.

In just a few days we will be sharing our first sessions on the Penny MacLeod piece entitled Dana - Life of the Party, last in my series of Raymond Crawford's Reindeer - the one with the Poinsettia Blanket and the first of our Quickie Series - Butterflies from Burnette and Bradley. 

The butterflies can be finished as stand alone ornaments if desired.  As we have shared before, Deaux Bijoux Bijoux has made custom painted stands in 2 color ways that will work with all 8 of the designs we are featuring in these Quickie Series.

There is still time to join in any of these classes so just email me at and we can get it all arranged for you.

Etsy Shop - DuoDesignsbySandra

I am enjoying working on my Etsy Shop much more than I ever imagined. (Shop Name:  DuoDesignsbySandra).  I wish I was better at grasping what all my options are but for now I'm happy that I have learned to share some of our surplus things with you guys.  May not look the best professionally but we'll get there in our presentation. As I've stated before, I tend to over purchase so end up having some extra class kits, or canvases, or both.  But I also discovered this was a great venue to share our stitch guides.  I try to add a new one or two a week.  Eventually I'll have them all listed.  I also want to pull out the cross-stitch packets and get them into loving hands.  Here's the latest stitch guide we added this week.  

One of my students from another class commissioned this guide and I know it is going to be wonderful when she gets it stitched.  Can't wait to see it.  I will confess that there is an enormous amount of bling on this design from Penny MacLeod - Glamour.  

When visiting the Etsy Shop please be sure to list as favorite.  I understand that these listings help push your shop up in the search engine categories.

Have a great beginning to the New Year!


Unknown said...

I can't seem to find the dates for the Mediterranean Cruise

Debbie Kimbrough

Sandy Arthur said...

October 24 to Nov. 4 2019 - come join us! Bring all your buddies! We have such fun!