Friday, November 30, 2007

If Your Results Are Lloyd Dobler, Call Me

ETA: I forgot to add A Cup Of Cheer from The Sampler Girl. A cup of cheer? I'd like to get a freaking tanker truck of cheer delivered to my door. I sure could use it right now. 

Maryse has posted the Decembre chart for her year long Stitch-A-Long. I have yet to do any of her little houses SAL but I hope to get to them some day. Last year, she shared a chart for this winter cottage and I did do that one. You can see all the SAL charts here and find a floss list and directions here. You might want to translate the second page.

Small Cross-Stitch Patterns has links to a bunch of my favorite kind of charts: smaller ones. Some of them I've seen before (and are on my to-do list) but others were new to me.

There are x-stitch charts for a few Christmas "primitive"ornaments on How Did I Do It? I like the country look of these.

TipNut has been posting some nice vintage embroidery patterns of Days of the week gingham fruits. So far, there are Monday pears, Tuesday cherries, Wednesday apples and Thursday strawberries I'm not sure if I linked to the cute kitten embroidery patterns she shared last time. Beware: there are tons of great stuff at TipNut so you may be there for awhile.

An oldie but goodie:

Which John Cusack Are You?

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Tiny Hiney is Five Years Old

If I was still updating my first blog, today would be its fifth anniversary. This is how it began:

Start Me Up

5:59 p.m. - Thursday, Nov. 28, 2002

I am such a cheater...
This diary was originally started like 11 days
ago. But now that I've learned some basic html, (bold, anyone?), changed my template, paid extra to add images, and now have diary #2 going, I can officially begin this one. Except right now I have nothing to say and I probably never will have anything to say. I just like adding links.

Why call it Tiny Hiney? Well, why not? Actually, I once heard about this Chihuahua named Tiny whose last name was Hines so he was called Tiny Hiney. That just totally cracked me up and I knew one day I'd have to use it somewhere. And I have used it a few times in the past. I wanted to call this Blah Blah Blah but that was taken, so once again, Tiny Hiney comes in handy. (Hey, I never claimed to be creative or anything.)

By the way, the first blog I ever read was The Daily Dewayne. I forget how I found it. But after reading that one and a few others, I decided to do my own blog. Except it had one entry on each page so it wasn't very blog-like. I had tried Blogspot first and didn't like any of their templates so I figured out how to change a free template by learning some simple HTML from Webmonkey (check out their Special Characters page if you want to learn how to make ™ or ♥) and Lissa Explains It All. And, the code for the box around the text came from Mandarin Designs (thanks, Guava for sharing that site!).

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Apron Giveaway and Some Rescued Dogs

Apronista is having TWO giveaways this week! The first is a mother/daughter apron set from Modern June and the other is from Pat Sloan of Quilters Home. To enter both giveaways, leave some comments on the posts at Apronista, and also link to the giveaway on your own blog, if you have one, (and, don't we all these days?) to be entered a second time.

Speaking of aprons, here's a picture (finally!) of the one that Suzan from Bombshell's Panorama made for me. I still can't believe she did that! I love the fabric and the vintage hankie in the pocket was so sweet. Thanks again, Suzan!

Apron from Suzan
Originally uploaded by PipStitch

I just stumbled on this while watching another video on YouTube. It's from one of my favorite Shih Tzu rescue groups, Lone Star down in Texas, and directed to those of you who still buy puppies in pet shops and through the internet. I hope it makes a difference for at least one person.

Sunday, November 25, 2007

My Two Favorite Gadgets

One of these does not play Milli Vanilli.

My two favorite gadgets
Originally uploaded by PipStitch

Actually, neither one does.

(I was trying to figure out how to center an image from Flickr. Looks like it worked.)

Friday, November 23, 2007

Snowman Biscornu

I made this snowman biscornu last week. The side seams did not come out even. I didn't feel like re-doing it but if I make another one for a friend, I will make sure it's even.

Snowman biscornu top
Originally uploaded by PipStitch

Snowman biscornu bottom
Originally uploaded by PipStitch

This biscornu was done on 18 ct Fiddler's Cloth or Fiddler's Lite. I always forget which is which. (And, if I ever labeled anything, pigs would fly.) I originally stitched "Christmas 2007" on the bottom piece but that didn't leave any room for the button so I ripped out the year. The lettering, holly leaves and candy canes all came from different charts I have around.

You can find the free chart for the biscornu here.

And, I think I used Fiddler's Lite Oatmeal after seeing it on the Charles Craft site.

Gobble Gobble

Turkey cross stitch
Originally uploaded by PipStitch

I couldn't sleep the other night so I cross stitched this turkey. The free chart is from Carol at X-Calibre Designs. He was pretty quick to stitch. Next year, I might make a few more of him and use him for some Thanksgiving cards. For this one though, I just added some felt to the back and added some floss to hang him up (I am so boring). I used 14 ct Aida and I forget the name of the color now. I had all the recommended floss colors except the one for the outer edge of his feathers so I just used a color that was a shade lighter.

Hope you have a Happy Thanksgiving!

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

The New Me

Just a few random thoughts...

I'm done with trying to keep this blog craft related only. There some days when I'd much rather link to someone looking like a "pregnant eggplant" than another cross stitch chart.

Then again, here's a free Christmas biscornu chart for you with trees and holly and a cute Santa button. And, more freebies from the same blogger.

Remember: November is Adopt A Senior Dog month. Check Petfinder for older dogs in your area who are available for adoption. You know, giving a dog a home would be a nice "fuck you" to Ellen. And, make sure you email her and tell her all about the dog you just adopted and how you will be returning it to the shelter or rescue if it doesn't work out because that is what you do and everybody knows that. And, if you didn't know that, you need to do a little research on how dog rescues operate. And for Christ's sake, people, stop buying puppies at pet stores. This is 2007. There is no excuse for that anymore. The same goes for breeding your pets.

Help the ASPCA crack down on puppy mills by taking their survey on where you got your dog.

Oh my God, I totally thought he was gay. In fact, if you Google "gay peter pan," his site is the #1 result. But, look, he got engaged. I think it's sweet that Peter Pan found his Tinkerbell and I wish them lots of happy days.

And, just in time for the holiday season: how to draw Olive, The Other Reindeer.

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Cheering Myself Up

Last night, I was still feeling pretty upset over my knee. I decided that I needed to do something fun instead of go to bed so I started on this dog house. I stitched the front and the back, and tonight I'll probably finish the rest of it. And, I am making this for myself. I need some cheering up and this cute little dog house will make me happy. I may make a few other things from Les chroniques de Frimousse too. I'd love to do the gingerbread house but I don't have any brown Aida and I don't want to do it in white or off-white. This past week, I made the snowman biscornu (I still need to take a picture of it). It's one of four charts on this page.

I just now finally found the directions on putting the houses together. I had planned to do it like I would a biscornu -- stitch the "walls" and roof separately and then attach them all together -- and it looks like that's what you do. The Google translation of the instructions is here. There aren't any photos of making the house though.

Saturday, November 17, 2007

The Latest On My Knee (and it's not good)

I wasn't going to say anything about my knee but if I need to get this out.

I haven't felt like blogging much lately. You can thank my fucked up knee for that.

It's been over three months since I had my first surgery. I've been up and walking for a few weeks now. At first, it felt weird to do that, after not using my leg for so long. I thought eventually I would do better with walking and I stupidly thought everything would get back to how it was before I fell. But it hasn't gotten any better. For one thing, I can tell there's something in my knee (stainless steel plate, anyone?). I can walk but that's about it. I can't kneel (I can really feel the plate then), I can't squat, and I can't bend my leg much unless I'm sitting down. I have no feeling in my lower leg, right below my knee. I could stick myself with a pin and not even know it. And, my foot has been swelling so much. I couldn't put on a shoe if I wanted.

I am so disappointed. Why in the world did I have the operation if all I got out of it was a bum knee? I should have just been put in a cast for three months because the surgery obviously didn't do anything for me except fuck up my leg.

Once upon a time, I was a preschool teacher. I can't see me going back to that if I can't sit on the floor with the kids, or get down to their level to talk to them, or pick them up and carry them, or chase after them. I used to ride a tricycle on the playground. Seriously. I never imagined the inability to do the hokey pokey would mean I couldn't work. I'm really glad I wasn't a skier, snowboarder, surfer, or tap dancer before this happened.

I go back to the orthopedic surgeon on Monday and he had better give me some good news. I have a feeling he is going to suggest removing the plate, but that's more surgery, more stitches, and the risk of another infection. And, not something I'm ready to sign up for. I'll only do it if I get a guarantee that I will have full use of my leg once the incision heals.

Sorry to be so negative. I just can't believe what a mess this is.

Monday, November 12, 2007

Enter This Apron Giveaway

This week's giveaway from Apronista is an apron from Carolyn's Kitchen. To enter, pick your favorite apron and leave some comments at Apronista. To be entered a second time, link to the giveaway on your own blog.

The vintage-inspired aprons from Carolyn's Kitchens have stripes and polka dots and heart-shaped pockets. How perfect!

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Free Heart Charts

My mom asked me to make a biscornu for her friend so I started on one this week and finished it last night. But when I sewed the top and bottom together, I could not get it to square up. Both pieces had the same amount of stitches yet when I put one on top of the other, it seemed like one had an extra row, even though every time I counted, I came up with the exact same number for every side. I'm convinced I'm a moron who cannot count. It was really frustrating because I couldn't figure out what the problem was. And, to make it worse, the bottom piece's threads started to unravel all the way to the backstitching and there was nothing I could do to fix it so I just gave up. I don't usually do that but life is short and I was not going to sit any longer, trying to get the pieces to fit together.

Maybe I will stop making biscornu (biscornus?) and move on to hearts. There are a bunch of free heart cross stitch charts here. [Link via Freebie Gallery where you can see a finished heart.)

Saturday, November 10, 2007

Felt Ornaments

Every time I get online these days, I see something else I want to make. Check out these adorable mitten ornaments. There's a Flickr pool for finished mittens too.

The mittens were linked on Sew, Mama Sew as part of Handmade Holidays, which I keep forgetting to check.

Also, linked were instructions on making embroidered felt ornaments from Sunshine's Creations. And, for more inspiration, there's a Flickr group for them too.

I also recently found (and joined) a Flickr pool for biscornu.

Friday, November 9, 2007

Some Freebies

Last night I was at Casa Mia and I saw these pretty floss bobbins (or thread winders) that she had made. Of course, I had no idea how to make something like that. Well, The Small Object has come to the rescue by posting instructions on just how to make your own floss bobbins. Yay! Now I want to make enough to take the place of every boring plastic one I have.

Casey Buonaugorio has a free chart for a frog biscornu on her site (it's right below the picture of her soon-to-be-released design, Irish Cream Sampler). I suggest you print out the chart now because it won't be there forever.

And, over at All Sorts, you can find a tutorial for making an Advent Calendar from felt and embroidery floss. I have got to make this one.

Speaking of felt and floss, I made another cat bag for a friend. My mom asked me to do it and I realized on Sunday that Monday would be my last chance to get it to our friend by Halloween, so I stayed up that night and put it together. I'm happy with my blanket stitch but I wish I had done a more decorative stitch around the nose and mouth. I think it needs whiskers too. It doesn't look very cat-like to me. The pattern and directions were in the October 2000 issue of Country Living.

Felt cat bag
Originally uploaded by PipStitch

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Holiday Softie Awards

Don't forget to vote for the Holiday Softie Awards. It's not an easy thing to pick just one in each category since there are so many great Softies to choose from. You have until noon on November 13th to get your vote in. I love, love, love the Zombie Christmas Choir Girl.

Another Apron Giveaway

Apronista is having another apron giveaway. This time it's for an apron from Sommer Designs, which are all worth drooling over.

Sunday, November 4, 2007

It's Up and Running

I know no one who comes here looking for free biscornu charts will care but it's a big deal for me: I am wearing my insulin pump. The trainer came to my house today and we went over how everything works. I had spent several hours last night watching the dvd and going through "pump school" on the Medtronic website so I felt pretty comfortable with all of the buttons and what they did even before she got here. She had me put insulin in the reservoir and then insert the cannula (the little teeny tiny you-don't-even-feel-it-going-in-plastic-needle thingy) into my tummy and here I am. And, here's a picture of my pump in action. And, no, normal people don't usually have tubing sticking out.

I don't know why I didn't do this 20 years ago. Seriously.

Saturday, November 3, 2007

Tie One On Local Pride

The latest Tie One On gallery is up -- the theme was Local Pride -- and it was all I could do not to leave lame "I love this apron!" comments on just about every single photo. Go look at all the fantastic aprons now, I command you.

You know, the Tie One On gallery always leads me to discovering more great blogs, not that I don't already have enough of them to read. And, people wonder why it takes me a month to answer an email.

Friday, November 2, 2007

My New Pal

Meet my new friend. (I refuse to give it a name like some people do.) After 29 years of taking insulin injections, I'm finally going on an insulin pump. A nice shiny blue one. I'm not thrilled at the thought of having this thing attached to me all the time but I'm willing to give it a shot. Hah.

I did a quick search on "insulin pump cozy" (I'm a goober) and nothing came up but I did find this lovely case that someone had custom made for their pump. Very nice.

Handmade Holidays at Sew Mama Sew

For the month of November, Sew, Mama Sew! is doing Handmade Holidays: 30 Days of Gifts to Sew [link via Sunshine's Creations]. There will be a different theme every day, with ideas for fabric and patterns for making holiday gifts, and links to tutorials. November 1st was Aprons and November 2nd was Pincushions & Pins. They're also giving away two $25 gift certificates every week (winners will be chosen from the comments).

Well, I just spent half an hour looking at fabric. I keep going back to this one. I would love an apron made from that.

It's Adopt A Senior Dog Month

Did you know November is adopt a senior dog month? Check Petfinder to find an older dog in your area who needs a home.

Thursday, November 1, 2007

Happy Halloween A Little Late

I was online for hours and hours last night and still forgot to put up a Happy Halloween here. What is it with me and holidays? I never remember to mention them until after the fact. So, in keeping with tradition, here's another photo of my dog with my cross stitched Halloween Cats. I'm not sure what is up with her tongue in this picture. Hope you had a Happy Halloween!!