Just a little blog to document my needlework projects and various other things along the way.

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Catching Up

Wow!!  Has it really been 5 months since I last posted?  It really doesn't seem like it has been that long but I guess time flies when your having fun.

The past 5 months have been a whirlwind for me.  Just shortly after my last post we took a much needed trip to Avon, North Carolina for some sun, sand and surf.  We had a nice time and even stopped for a night in Williamsburg Virginia on our way home.  I can't seem to get enough of that place!

Not long after our beach trip we lost power for several days due to the Derecho storms that passed through our area.  My daughter and I didn't hang around long for that, we packed up the car and headed to my mother-in-laws in North Carolina for a visit.  We really did make lemonade out of lemons because we had a really nice visit and got to go to Ikea for the first time.  Unfortunately my husband had to stay behind to hold down the fort and go to work.  I think we were without power for a total of 4 nights and we sustained minimal damage.  We lost half of a pear tree, had a water leak in the bedroom and lost a refrigerator full of food.  It could have been much worse and was for many people.

As I told you in my last post I finally finished my "It is Well" sampler.  I entered it in the West Virginia state fair and won a blue ribbon in the sampler category.  I was so thrilled, I nearly squealed when I saw it had won.  I am still attending sampler club and learning new things but I have yet to start a new sampler.  I have some ideas but I am just not sure what I want to do so I am taking a break from sampler creating for now.


I have finished some small things and I am nearing the end of my Seaside Memories Sampler by The Sampler Girl.  I have three other projects in the works right now, "Merry Christmas to Ewe" by Brenda Gervais, still working on the Mary Victor sampler from the Examplarery (which I don't think I will ever finish), and I just started on the "American Sampler" from Cross-Stitch & Needlework magazine from March 2011, which is going to be a challenge for me.  Not to mention I am dying to start "Hallow Wee House" by Chessie & Me, I love these little kits!  They are so fun to stitch!

Joyous Heart-ornament & fob (Homespun Elegance)

Glory House (Chessie & Me), Winter Squirrel (Victoria Sampler), A Little Love (Lizzie Kate), Joyous Heart-ornament &fob (Homespun Elegance)

I sat down to stitch for a little while last evening and realized that I could not find my favorite pair of Dovo Hardanger scissors (pictured above).  I started thinking about where I had been and the last time I saw them and remembered I was at the Toyota dealership getting my oil changed.  I always take something to stitch when I have to wait.  Sure enough, I called and they had my scissors!!  I guess I need to make something to tie them around my neck because apparently the fob didn't keep me from loosing them.  I must be more careful with my expensive scissors.  Big huge thank you to whoever found them and turned them in!!!  

I hope everyone is warm and safe.  My heart is so heavy for everyone who has been affected by the recent hurricane, super-storm.  So many here in my state of WV are suffering without electricity in freezing temperatures.  In our higher elevations roofs are collapsing due to the heavy snow.  We were very blessed, we only lost power for one day this time and didn't have as much snow as others around us, even 6 miles down the highway they had several inches more.  Please remember everyone that was in the path of this horrendous storm and keep them in your prayers.

Well hopefully I won't wait so long to check back in with you all.  Now that summer and volleyball season are over I hope to be able to get some stitching done as well as some blogging.  Until then everyone take care!!

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

It Is Finished!!

 Time has just flown by the past few months!  I have been a busy girl lately, families have a way of keeping you that way.  I have been trying to keep up with my blog reading however I have not had the spare time to post anything on my blog.  Not to mention I really haven't had anything to blog about.  The only stitching I have worked on since March has been the Bargello section of my "It Is Well" sampler, and there is only so much I can say about that.  I can tell you by the time I finished the Bargello section I was tired of it, but it was well worth it! 

Completed Sampler with Bargello at the bottom.

I am so happy to tell you that my Sampler Club, "It Is Well" sampler is finished!!!!!!  I finished it last night and dropped it off to be framed this morning.  It was kind of bitter sweet as it has been my constant companion the past year and 3 months.

The two bands between the fish and the verse were redone. 

I would have been done sooner but I decided to pull out two bands I had done in the beginning that I wasn't happy with.  I think it turned out quite well and I can't wait to see it framed and hanging on my wall.  Now to figure out what to do for my next Sampler Club Sampler!  I have a few ideas floating around and I can tell you it will not be near as big as this one was.  I hope you are all having a wonderful summer so far!

This wonderful gift was on my doorstep the other day from Mrs.Meyers Clean Day.  I won a bucket in their Bucket Brigade giveaway.  Their products are fabulous!  Thank you so much Mrs.Meyers, your cleaning products are the best!

Friday, April 27, 2012

Baby Robin Update and Some Antiquing!

Oh what a bad blogger I have been!  It seems I have been neglecting more than my blog, I have also been neglecting my stitching.  I just can't find the time to stitch lately as things have been a bit busy around my little cottage.  I have also been helping my husband a bit with his blog, he recently went back to work after 5 months of recuperating from shoulder surgery and he asked if I would write a blog post for him from time to time.  I think that is funny because I am not a writer and his blog is about gardening which I know absolutely nothing about.   You can check out what I wrote here and here, so far I have just written two posts for him, hopefully I can continue to help.  Although I am at a total loss as to what I should write about next.   

I am happy to report to you that my baby Robin is alive and well, I see him every day!  He likes to hang out in my back yard.  I even woke up the other morning to him sitting on top of the privacy fence right outside my bedroom window chirping his head off.   I can't tell you how thrilled I am that this little fellow is doing so well and it is wonderful to see him fly!

I did a little antiquing this past weekend, I have to be very careful when I do this as my small cottage is busting at the seems and I always seem to find something I can't live without.  I had to make a few rule's several years ago for my husband and I to follow while antiquing (he is worse than me).         
1. You have to really love the item, if you think you are going to kick yourself for the next 10 years
about not buying it you should go ahead and buy it.
2.  You can't buy it if you don't have a place to put it.
3.  If you don't have a use for it or a place for it you don't buy it.

Thus far these simple rules have kept us from being hoarders of antiques and such.  So while I was on my little antique outing I did find a few things that I could definitely put to good use.  I found a little sewing stand to sit beside my stitching chair, it has a little tray inside for my scissors and tools and a place to put some of my projects.

 I also found two little canvas bags that you can stitch on with two bags full of floss, at $5.00 a piece I thought they were a steal!  I can't wait to stitch something on them.

Well I must sign off now, I have a house to clean and a mountain of laundry to do, so that maybe I can get some stitching in this weekend!  I hope you all have a wonderful weekend!!

Sunday, April 15, 2012

The Birds Among Us

I had fully intended to post some photos of the baby robins in my tree last week.  We started with four and after a cold front moved through with temps dropping into the 20's we were left with one little bird.  I really didn't think this little fellow would make it through the night Wednesday, he was lethargic and breathing very heavy.  But his mother knew best and didn't give up on him, she stayed in the nest with him through the night and as the temps began to rise on Thursday morning I noticed the little lone Robin standing on the side of his nest.  He was a sight for sore eyes, he stood on the sides of the nest all day and chirped while his mother returned every little bit to strengthen him with worms.  They spent one last chilly night in their little nest in the pear tree in my front yard.

 The next morning the nest was empty.  I wondered what had become of my little friend, that is until I took my dog out and she discovered a visitor in the back yard.  It took everything I had to keep that little Robin from being my dogs first bird hunt!  The dog chased the little robin back into the front yard where mother Robin was waiting with food but after mother flew off the little Robin tried to follow her by crossing a busy street in front of my house.  Here I was in the street in my pajamas trying to get him to safety.  This little fellow had me a nervous wreck all day that he was either going to be eaten by an animal, hit by a car or a lawn mower.  He was all over the place, back and forth across the street and in and out of my yard and the neighbors yard.  I lost track of him some time Friday afternoon but I would hear his chirps from time to time so I was just sure he was okay.  My hope is that he finally took flight.

With all the bird drama going on around here along with my other daily duties I haven't been able to get any stitching done since Wednesday.  I have been spending quite a bit of time in the back yard with my energetic English Springer Spaniel playing Frisbee.  My poor girl misses having her daddy around so much after he returned to work after 5 months of recouperating from shoulder surgery.  They spent a lot of time outside while he was home working on the garden.  I guess I am going to have to start stitching outside.  I hope everyone had a great weekend, I will leave you with a few pictures of my little darlings I took the other day.

Maple and Daphne, friend or foe?  Maple just wants to play and Daphne just wants to be left alone.

My beautiful Daphne and her cute pink nose.  She loves to be photographed, and she is very photogenic.  I think she knows she is beautiful.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Some Progress And Spring Flowers

Hello and welcome to my new followers, I am so glad you are following my little blog.  I hope everyone had a wonderful Easter!  We sure did, we started our day at church, had a delicious dinner, gorgeous weather and of course after that I fell asleep and didn't get up until 7:30 P.M., I must have been tired.

 I did get a little stitching done this weekend, my progress is very slow on my "It Is Well" sampler.  I am almost done, I have about 4 more rows of straight stitches to add to my Bargello, and I have to redo a few rows at the top below the alphabet that I am not happy with and then I will be finished.  I would love to drop this off to Patty @ Village Sampler by Friday!!  It's not looking promising since today I haven't picked up a needle.  But I have plans to work some tonight, hubby is picking up pizza on the way home and I am going to stitch away and watch the voice.  I love to stitch while watching television, sometimes I get lucky and my daughter, joins me.

Progress on "It Is Well"

There are so many pretty flowers blooming here at Maple Cottage, I took several pictures yesterday to share with you.
Bleeding Heart
Japanese Lilac

Lilly Of The Valley

I hope you have enjoyed my spring blooms, next time I will share some pictures of the new babies living in my tree.

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Cross Stitch Contraband

I have been catching up on my blog reading this evening.  What I have been reading makes me sad and angry.  I am sure most of you have read about the copyright issues that are plaguing the needlework industry.  I am not a designer just a gal who loves needlework, and I can't imagine how frustrating this is for the designers. These designers are artists and their works are being copied and stolen.  They put a lot of time, money and effort into the designs they create and they are not making loads of money doing it, really if you added up their time, expenses and supplies they aren't making anything.  

I am sure there are some who are ignorant to the fact that when they copy and share a chart it is illegal, but once you are informed that what you are doing is illegal you need to stop.  there are others who don't care that they are stealing, as long as they are getting something for nothing and getting by with it they will continue.  Some people don't have a conscience.  Wonder though how they would react if they pulled up to their favorite needle work shop only to discover that it has closed for good?  Or they visited an online needlework distributor only to find that they are no longer in business, and how sad would they be if their favorite designer decided to stop designing? All the while they contributed to their demise by downloading pirated copies of designs they should have purchased from the designer, an LNS or an online retailer. 

 I read in one article that one of the excuses people give is that they can't afford the charts.  That is seriously lame!  Most charts I have purchased are around $8.00, and I spent almost that much on my lunch yesterday at Chix Filet without batting an eye.  If a person really can't afford to buy charts and loves to stitch there are many designers who have down loadable freebies on their sites.  Truth is they want something for nothing, that is sadly how our society is, everyone wants a handout.  But I'm not going to get on my bandbox about that.

So next time your mom, neighbor, sister or your BFF wants to copy that gorgeous design your stitching, tell her no that she needs to purchase her own or better yet buy her one yourself and support the needle arts industry so it will be around for years to come.  And for crying out loud don't ever download charts off the Internet from some free chart website, not only is it stolen but you don't know where that thing has been either!  But hey if you are brazen enough to steal stuff then I guess you deserve to have a computer full of Trojan's (virus's that is).  And keep in mind that when you copy something that is copyrighted, whether you give it to your neighbor or upload it to a website, you are breaking the law, it was sold to you for your personal use and you don't have a license to reproduce or distribute it even if it's a pdf design it is still copyrighted.  Lets all do our part to support our needle arts industry, and please support your local LNS when possible if you are lucky enough to have one.  I have two in my area, the one I shop at is Village Sampler in St.Albans WV, I am so thankful to be able to shop and stitch there and I can't imagine it not being there.  Village Sampler just celebrated it's 25th birthday on my birthday March 25th, looking forward to many more birthdays with my favorite shop. 

Goodnight all, hope you all have a Happy Easter!!

Here are some more articles you can read on this subject:






Saturday, March 31, 2012

It's All Yellow!

Greetings to you from my pollen filled neck of the woods!!  Is it as yellow in your area as it is in mine?  It's pretty terrible here, yellow sneezing powder everywhere.  I battle asthma and allergies 365 days a year, I get allergy shots which are helping little by little but sometimes there just isn't enough medicine or immunotherapy to combat the seasons changing save a bubble to live in.  So to make a long story short, I haven't gotten much stitching done lately.  I don't know about you but when I don't feel well I don't feel like stitching either.  I did manage to finish reading Nicholas Sparks "The Best of Me", WOW, can't wait for the movie, I will be there with my case of Kleenex!  I love his books, but are they ever hard on my emotions.  I got to see him at our 2010 Kanawaha County Public Library Book Fair, my daughter and I got our books signed and had our picture made behind him.  Diana Gabaldon was there the next day, my other favorite author, it was the best book fair ever!!

Me and Nicholas Sparks, could I have smiled any bigger?

I did work on my "It Is Well" sampler last weekend, I started the bargello section which will be the final section.  However everything I got done I had to rip out because I didn't graph it, I winged it and it didn't look right so I started over.  I'm glad I did start over otherwise it wouldn't have looked right and I wouldnt' have been satisfied with it.  It looks great!!  I'm hoping to have it completed in the next few weeks so I can take it to Village Sampler to be framed.  I can't wait!!  Oh and I did manage to get Miss Maple Darling to the groomer this week, she looks like a new dog and she smells amazing.  I'm threatening to take Miss Daphne Darling for a lion cut, she would be furious.

Can you see all the glitter?  Just call her glitter puppy.

My daughter is on spring break this week so I am hoping to get some stitching done, unless she has other plans for me.  I'm already hearing talk about shopping, sleep overs and the Hunger Games movie, so who knows how much of anything I will get done.  Hopefully I will be feeling better and can fulfill my duty as her activities director (Is my sarcastic tone coming through here?).  I liked them much better when they were 3 and didn't have their own social lives outside of kindermusic, Bear and the Big Blue House and nap time.  I never dreamed that toddlers were easier than teens, boy was I in for a rude awakening!

Hair cuts make her sleepy.
She's out.

Well, I have rambled enough, just wanted to check in.  Hope you all have a wonderful week!

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Spring Flowers, Bird Bottles and Mama Robins

Spring is my favorite time of year, I love everything about it with the exception of pollen and shedding pets, I even love the rainy days.  This time of year is full of new life.  We have a mommy Robin nesting in our front yard in one of our Bradford Pear trees.  I am very concerned that she has nested way to low in the tree, I'm praying that critters don't get her babies.  That happened in our back yard last year and I was devastated! 

In various places around our house we have bird bottles.  We first saw these in Williamsburg Virginia and I fell in love with them!  Bird bottles were discovered in the Colonial area there in Williamsburg and have been reproduced from their 18th century findings.  Small birds will nest in these bottles and are quite fascinating to watch.  Last year a family of sparrows took up residence in one of our bottles and had a piece of white foam that resembled a mattress hanging from the bottle, guess it wouldn't fit through the door of their humble abode.

These are just a few of our bird bottles, we have bought one every time we have been to Williamsburg VA.  We have bought all but one at the Pottery Factory, which is getting ready to have their big grand re-opening.  The only other place I have seen bird bottles was in Manteo, NC.  It was a blue one hanging on the side of the Roanoke Island Inn, I never did find them for sale but the next time I go I will be inquiring as to where I can find one for our collection.

Bleeding Heart
Crabapple Tree Blooms.

Everything is starting to bloom in our yard.  The Crabapple tree in our back yard is blooming and it is one of the most beautiful trees for having such a crabby name.  I'm really looking forward to the Hydrangeas, Rhododendron, Azaleas and my Roses.  Ahh, there is nothing more beautiful than Spring!!

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Painting, Rain Barrels, Hungarian Stitches And IHSW

WOW!!!  Can I just tell you that I am still reeling from my crazy weekend?  It was a roller coaster.  It all started when I found pinterest as I mentioned in a previous post, then I decided I wanted my bedroom painted for my birthday that is coming up.  So hubby and I spent the whole day working on the bedroom and I spent the night cleaning the house, this whole process went from 8:30 A.M. to 1:30 A.M., and I had to be up early Saturday for Sampler Club.

Maple painting the floor

When we got up Sat. morning we realized we had no water, apparently there had been several main breaks and a leaking valve.  Some parts of our area were under boil water advisories but we were the lucky ones with no water to boil. We have these problems quite frequently in our area, our water works need a serious overhaul.  I was not going to miss Sampler Club because I had no water, lets just say rain barrels come in real handy when you need to clean up and go somewhere. 

What a difference, from taupe to blue in a day!

At sampler club we worked on a stitch that is very difficult with 4 hours of sleep and a rain bath.  We learned three different variations of the Hungarian stitch.  It really is gorgeous!!  But I wanted to know what drunk Hungarian came up with this confusing stitch.  But as it turns out it's not so hard when you have had a full night of sleep.

Three variations of Hungarian Stitch.

When sampler club was over there was still no water and no answer as to when it would come back, so like the troopers we are my daughter and I checked into the Embassy Suites, hubby stayed with Daphne and Maple.  I have never been so thankful for a real shower in my life!!  We had a nice mother daughter night of rest and relaxation and plenty of water.  After two tiring dramatic days I needed a break.  And there is nothing better than waking up to a breakfast buffet waiting for you, I could get used to that.

The other half of my closet and my grandmothers sampler.

So needless to say I missed the IHSW (International Hermit and Stitch Weekend) , so because I am the birthday girl this coming weekend, and I can do whatever I want on my birthday weekend, I am just going to make my own IHSW weekend and plan to sit on my bum with my favorite movies and stitch away while I eat sinful amounts of birthday cake and Dr.Pepper.  So if any of you would like to join me on my special birthday IHSW weekend get yourself a cupcake or 12 and join me!

Monday, March 19, 2012

I Won An Award!!

I've won an award!

Milly from Milly's Stitches  honored me with my first award.  You can check out her blog by following the link.  Thank you so much Milly!!

Some background:
Liebster is a German word meaning favourite, dearest or beloved and the Leibster is awarded by Bloggers to other newer Bloggers who have fewer than 200 followers to spread the word and help the new(er) Bloggers gain wider recognition. The award comes with four conditions which each recipient must satisfy when accepting:

1. Choose five up- and- coming blogs (with fewer than 200 followers) to award the Liebster to.
2. Show your thanks to the Blogger who gave you the award by linking back to them.
3. Post the award on your blog. list the Bloggers you are giving the award to with links to their sites. Leave comments on their blogs so they know about the award.
4. Share five random facts about yourself that people don't know about you.

And the award goes to these favorite, dearest and beloved blogs:

1. Vickie at A Stitcher's Story
2. Margaret at Margaret's Blog
3. Carolyn at Taking One Stitch At A Time
4. Maggie at Black Country Wench
5. Kathy at Sew Crafty Kathy

Five random facts about me:

1. I like peanut butter and miricle whip sandwiches.
2. I love childrens books, especially Goodnight Moon and my favorite book is the bible.
3. I am a night owl, and much more prductive after 9:00 P.M..
4. I'm addicted to Dr.Pepper.
5. I am a house cat, I like to be at home.

Congratulations to the winners - please visit their blogs.

Monday, March 12, 2012

Stitcher Slacker

I have been such a stitcher slacker this past week, I have been distracted.  I love those books for kids, If you give a pig a pancake, If you give a mouse a cookie and so on by Laura Numeroff.  I am learning that the reason I like those books so well is that I can totally relate.  If you give Dana a pinterest board then she will look for things to pin, then she will find new ways to be organized and will have to try them at 1:00 in the morning and on and on.

 So I am new to this Pinterest thing and I have a love hate relationship with it, I love all the ideas I am finding, I hate the time I want to spend looking at all the pins.  And most of all I hate that it has given me clean out and re-organize fever which has taken over my stitching time.  It is nice however to have things organized and freshly cleaned.  I found things I forgot I owned, and lots of things I don't need anymore which makes extra space in a house where every square inch is valuable. Living in a small cottage size house does not allow for keeping things that one doesn't absolutely love or need.
Hopefully today I will be able to get some stitching done, it's chilly and rainy here in my neck of the woods so I can't think of anything better to do than to stitch and drink coffee.

I hope you all had a wonderful weekend and everyone is adjusting to the springing forward, hopefully you are adjusting to it better than I am!  Have a great week!  

Friday, March 2, 2012

Seaside Memories

There is nothing like a day spent at the ocean, toes in the sand, salty breezes and the surf washing over your feet.  My family has vacationed on the Outer Banks of North Carolina for the past 3 summers and we have had so much fun there and made so many great memories.  But by far the very best vacation we have ever taken was the first time we visited OBX in 2009.  I don't know why this was such a special vacation, maybe because it was my daughters first trip to the beach, our first time there or our first trip as just the four of us?  Maybe all of the above, but we all agree it was the best vacation yet, and it was special.

So when I saw Tanya Marie Anderson's "Seaside Memories" pattern I knew I had to stitch it to commemorate our special trip to the Outer Banks, it even has the date 2009 on it.  The only thing I have to change are the four initials for the four of us.  You can see the entire design here and can order it from The Sampler Girl or visit her blog here.  She has quickly become one of my favorite designers and I have a few more of her designs ready to stitch in my near future (hopefully nearer than farther)!

                                                              My progress so far.

Thursday, March 1, 2012

It Is Well

I have decided to call my Sampler Club Sampler the "It Is Well" sampler, because it just needs a name besides my Sampler Club sampler.  So how did I arrive at that name?  From the Hymn "It Is Well With My Soul" by Horatio Spafford.  I was going to add another bible verse to my sampler but after adding the ship and the waves I decided instead to add the first portion of one of my favorite hymns.  I felt like the hymn would fit right along with the stormy theme of my sampler, and the storms of life were something Horatio knew well.  While my life has never known tragedy and trial such as Horatio knew, the past year of my life has been stormy and rough for my family.  When I started this sampler it was just a sampler but through the year it has become much more.  It represents to me a reminder of life's trials and storms while trusting God to see me through them, a reminder of the great times had at Village Sampler with new friends and also a reminder of wonderful times spent at the seashore with my family.   The verse Psalm 107:29, the saying "Through the storm you do not walk alone and the hymn "It Is Well With My Soul" have been a great comfort and inspiration to me through this past year.

Here is Horatio Spaffords story:
In the late 1860s life was good for Horatio G. Spafford and his wife Anna. They were living in a north side suburb of Chicago with their five children, Annie, Maggie, Bessie, Tanetta and Horatio, Jr. He had a successful law practice in Chicago. The doors of the Spaffords' home were always open as a place for activists to meet during the reform movements of the time. Horatio G. Spafford was quite active in the abolitionist movement. Frances E. Willard, president of the National Women's Christian Temperance Union as well as evangelical leaders like Dwight L. Moody were often guests in their home. Spafford was a Presbyterian church elder and a dedicated Christian.
Until now Horatio and Anna Spafford had led a charmed life. They had everything going their way. However, in 1870 their faith was tested by tragedy. Their four year old son, Horatio, Jr., died of scarlet fever. The Spaffords were devastated. In October of 1871 when the Great Chicago Fire broke out Horatio faced another test of his faith. A few months before the Great Chicago Fire, Spafford being a wealthy man, had invested much of his wealth in real estate by the shore of Lake Michigan. Not only did the Great Chicago Fire destroy most of Chicago but most of Spafford's holdings were destroyed. 250 people died in the Great Chicago Fire and 90,000 were left homeless.

The Spaffords did not despair. Their home had been spared and they had their family. God had been good. Even though their finances were mostly depleted, Anna and Horatio used what resources they had left to feed the hungry, help the homeless, care for the sick and injured and comfort their grief stricken neighbors. The Great Chicago Fire was a great American tragedy; the Spaffords used it to show the love of the Christ to those in need.

In 1873 Anna Spafford's health was failing and hoping to put behind the tragic loss of their son and the fire and to benefit Anna's health, the Spaffords planned a trip to Europe. They would sail on the French steamer Ville du Havre to Europe with their four daughters. Spafford not only wanted to visit Europe but he wanted to assist Evangelists Dwight L. Moody and Ira D. Sankey in a revival they were conducting in England.

Moody and Sankey had met at a convention of the Young Men's Christian Association in Indianapolis in 1870. After hearing Sankey sing, Moody at once invited him to come to Chicago and assist him in his evangelist work there. Ira D. Sankey considered Moody's invitation and after much thought and prayer, decided to accept. Six months later he joined Moody in Chicago.

Dwight L. Moody and Ira Sankey were in the middle of a revival meeting when the Great Chicago Fire broke out in 1871. Moody and Sankey barely escaped Chicago with their lives. It is said that Sankey was on a row boat a long distance out in Lake Michigan where he watched as Chicago burned. With most of Chicago having been destroyed, Moody and Sankey decided to accept an invitation to visit England. In 1873 Moody and Sankey started a work in England. Moody and Sankey made such a profound impression in England their names became household words all over Europe.

The Spaffords planed to leave in November on their voyage to Europe. As sometimes happens, God had other plans for Horatio G. Spafford. The day they were to sail for Europe Spafford had a business emergency and could not leave. Not wanting to disappoint his wife Anna and their daughters he sent them on ahead and planned to follow on another ship in a few days. Accompanying Anna Spafford were her French governess, Emma Lorriaux, several friends and several ministers.

On November 22, 1873 the steamer Ville du Havre was struck by a British iron sailing ship, the Lockhearn. The steamer Ville du Havre, with Anna Spafford and her daughters aboard, sank within twelve minutes in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean. Only 81 of the 307 passengers and crew members survived this tragic shipwreck.

Even though the Lockhearn was in danger of sinking the unconscious Anna Spafford was picked up from floating debris by the crew of the Lockhearn. An American cargo sailing vessel, the Trimountain, arrived in time to save the survivors of the Ville du Havre and the Lockhearn. Anna Spafford was taken to Cardiff, Wales where she telegraphed her husband Horatio. Anna's cable was brief and heartbreaking, "Saved alone. What shall I do..." Horatio and Anna's four daughters had drowned. As soon as he received Anna's telegram, Horatio left Chicago without delay to bring his wife home. Sailing across the Atlantic Ocean the captain of the ship called Horatio to the bridge. He informed Horatio that "A careful reckoning has been made and I believe we are now passing the place where the Ville du Havre was wrecked. The water is three miles deep." That night, alone in his cabin Horatio G. Spafford penned the words to his famous hymn, "It Is Well With My Soul." Horatio's faith in God never faltered. He later wrote Anna's half-sister, "On Thursday last we passed over the spot where she went down, in mid-ocean, the waters three miles deep. But I do not think of our dear ones there. They are safe, folded, the dear lambs."

The following account is taken from the Christian History Institute.

"Anna Spafford later spoke of being sucked violently downward. Baby Tanetta was torn from her arms by a collision with some heavy debris, with a blow so violent that Anna's arm was severely bruised. She flailed at the water trying to catch her baby. Anna caught Tanetta's gown for just a moment before another smashing blow tore the little girl out of her arms forever. Reaching out again, all she could find was a man's leg in corduroy trousers. Anna, barely conscious, was then swirled about in a whirlpool before surfacing near the Loch Earn. She instinctively clung on to a small plank and the next thing she recalled was the splash of an oar as she lay at the bottom of a small boat. Bruised and sick, her long hair was matted with salt and her dressing gown shredded. But the pain in her body was nothing compared to the pain in her heart as she realized that her four daughters had been lost in the disaster. A young male passenger, afloat on a piece of wood, came upon Maggie and Annie, the two oldest Spafford children. At his direction, each girl grasped one of his side pockets as he tried to find a board large enough to support all three of them. After about 30 or 40 minutes in the water, he found a piece of wreckage and struggled to help the two young girls climb atop the board. But as he watched, their weary arms weakened, and he saw their eyes close. Their lifeless forms floated away from his own fatigue-paralyzed arms. No clues ever surfaced about the fate of little Bessie."

After Anna was rescued, Pastor Nathaniel Weiss, one of the ministers traveling with Anna and Horatio's group remembered hearing Anna say, "God gave me four daughters. Now they have been taken from me. Someday I will understand why." Anna was utterly devastated. Many of the survivors watched Anna closely, fearing she may try to take her life. In her grief and despair, Anna heard a soft voice speaking to her, "You were saved for a purpose!" It was then Anna remembered something a friend had once said, "It's easy to be grateful and good when you have so much, but take care that you are not a fair-weather friend to God."

Following their reunion in Europe, Horatio and Anna returned to Chicago to begin their lives again. God blessed Anna and Horatio with three children. They had a son in 1876, again called "Horatio." Not so much for his father but for their lost son. In 1878 their daughter Bertha was born. Tragically, when little Horatio reached the age of 4 just as his brother before him, he died from scarlet fever. In 1880 Anna and Horatio had another daughter they called Grace. After the loss of little Horatio, the Spaffords decided to leave their home in America and settle in Jerusalem. In September of 1881 the Spaffords and a few of their friends left America for Israel.

When peace like a river attendeth my way,
When sorrows like sea billows roll;
Whatever my lot Thou hast taught me to say,
“It is well, it is well with my soul!”

Though Satan should buffet, though trials should come,
Let this blest assurance control,
That Christ hath regarded my helpless estate,
And hath shed His own blood for my soul.

My sin—oh, the bliss of this glorious thought—
My sin, not in part, but the whole,
Is nailed to His Cross, and I bear it no more;
Praise the Lord, praise the Lord, O my soul!

And Lord, haste the day when the faith shall be sight,
The clouds be rolled back as a scroll
The trump shall resound, and the Lord shall descend –
“Even so, it is well with my soul”

For me, be it Christ, be it Christ hence to live;
If dark hours about me shall roll
No pang shall be mine, for in death as in life
Thou wilt whisper Thy peace to my soul.

Read more here

The ship, waves and compass all from "Sampler and Antique Needlework Quarterly" by Tricia Wilson Nguyen for Refined Inc.  The star motifs are from "A Stitchers Journey" p.33 by Blackbird Designs.

 All materials for this sampler have been purchased by me for my own personal use, this sampler is being done for my own personal use and at no time in the future will be duplicated.

Wednesday, February 29, 2012


I can't even begin to tell you how exited I am that two of my house plants have blooms!!!  This is no small thing.  I used to drag half dead violets to my Gramma, who had the most beautiful violets, as does my mother, in the world!  I however did not inherit this house plant violet growing gene.  So imagine my surprise when my violet started blooming, apparently it loves my son's bedroom.  And even more exiting than the violet blooming is the peace lilly that has been on the brink of death since it came to me when my father in law passed five years ago, it has never bloomed and has done good to survive.  Well I guess it also loves my son's room because it too is blooming.  My plants have not always lived in this miracle working plant room, that used to be my daughters room and for about a month was my sewing room until my runaway bunny (my son) came home to live after trying it on his own for a summer.  This room gets the morning sun, which my son hates but the plants love.  So here are my beautiful blooms.

                                               Not quite a bloom yet but it's coming!

                                  These look more blue in this photo but they are the prettiest purple!

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Works In Progress

Normally I am a one at  a time kind of girl.  I don't ever like to work on more than two projects at any given time unless I am working on something to give someone.  Well somehow in the past year I have gone WIP crazy.  Yes I know some stitchers out there would laugh but this is a lot for someone who does one project and finishes it before starting a new one. 

While working on my "Mary Victor sampler", from The Examplarery,  I became aggravated because I messed up the border and I grew tired of Algerian Eyelet stitches, so I started another Sampler "Seaside Memories" By Tanya Marie Anderson "The Sampler Girl."   So no big deal, that's just two.  Then I started my Sampler Club sampler and my two project minimum flew out the window!  And now I am working on three small projects "Joyous Heart" from Homespun Elegance, The Posy Collection "Mount Hood", and a "Festival Of Trees" by Mill Hill on perforated paper. 

I have vowed to start no more projects until I finish at least a few of these.  I haven't even mentioned what I have stashed away and kitted up ready to stitch when these are finished.  They are my motivation to finish what I have started.

The WIP'S  

                                                                  Part of the Stash

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

This and That

I have been in a stitching frenzy the past few days!!  I hadn't worked on my Sampler Club Sampler since before I left for my trip and as I told you in a previous post I wasn't sure what I wanted to do next.  Going to our Sampler Club meeting always inspires me to work on my sampler.  So yesterday I organized my stash and got to work on the next portion of my Sampler.

I am so exited because I can finally see it all coming together and an end is near.  It will be a bitter sweet moment when I finish this sampler. I have been working on it diligently for a year and it is to date the largest needlework project I have ever done not to mention the most challenging as there is no pattern and much of what I have done I have just learned in the past year. 

I also wanted to share with you that I think I have finally figured out what my green silk mystery thread is!  I love this thread and have used it throughout my sampler but have been referring to it as mystery thread, well I am pretty sure it is The Thread Gatherer Silk N' Colors Marsh Grasses.  How appropriate is that name, considering how I used it to look like sea grass in one of my bands?

I didn't take any pictures of my progress yet, hopefully tomorrow I can get some taken and loaded on my blog.  So I will leave you with a video of my favorite Downton Abbey character, since I am in Downton withdrawal waiting for season 3.

Friday, February 17, 2012

Susan's Stitching Party!!

I have joined Susan's Stitching Party!!  You can check it out here and join the party!  Thank you Susan for this opportunity to share with other stitcher's what we are working on.  I love to see what other's are working on, it gives me inspiration!  Happy Stitching!!  

My Sampler Update

I was able to finish my drawn thread bands on my sampler before leaving last week for Oregon but just haven't had the time to take photo's and put them on my blog.  I am so glad to have these bands finished, they have been the most challenging thing I have done on my sampler thus far.  Maybe because I wasn't paying attention to what I was doing and messed them up.  Well regardless of all my repairs I made to fix my stupid mistakes I think they turned out quite well.  Now I just have to figure out what I'm going to do next, I have a few ideas but nothing definite.
The drawn thread bands are all done with Petite Silk Lame` Braid SP33 by Rainbow Gallery (I love this thread!) and the other two bands done in green are a varigated silk that I have no idea what it is, I bought it discounted because it was missing it's tag.
The first drawn thread band is the Diamond Hemstitch.
The first green band is the Montenegrin Stitch.
The second drawn thread band is done with half Diamond Eyelets and Coral Knots.
The second green band is done with Scotch Stitch and alternating Scotch Stitch.
The third and final drawn band (the one I messed up) is done with Hemstitch and Herringbone Stitch.

Please excuse my terrible photography and my un-pressed linen, I am a work in progress when it comes to photos and I hate to press linen.

 Our Sampler Club meets this coming Saturday so maybe I will get some feedback from the other ladies on where to go from here.  Can't wait to see what we will be learning!  Hopefully I will get to write a post about it this weekend.  My daughter is having 4 of her friends over for a birthday sleep over, eek!  Should be an interesting weekend!  Hope you all have a good one!

Monday, February 13, 2012

Hello and Welcome

Me, view from Silcox Hut

Hello and welcom new followers!  I have been absent from my blog the past week and wanted to thank you for following my blog.  It was a nice surprise to see new comments and followers while I was on my vacation.
I just returned last night from a trip to Oregon.  I flew out there for my brother's wedding last week.  It was the trip of a lifetime!!  It really was one of the most beutiful places I have ever been and I had a wonderful time.  My brother and his beautiful wife put together the most amazing wedding, and the most beautiful wedding I have ever been to.
I am off to rest, recover and relax from living in the Pacific time zone and a much higher altitude than I am used to here in WV.  I leave you with a few pictures from my trip.  Hope you all have a wonderful week!

Mt.Hood Oregon
View from condo, Government Camp

View from Silcox Hut
Silcox Hut, the wedding venue