Thursday, April 18, 2019

Game of Stones

Without getting into too much detail, Dave had some medical tests two weeks ago that resulted in his getting Pancreatitis. Painful and potentially dangerous stuff, putting him in the hospital for about a week for observation and to move slowly from no food intake to liquid-only diet to a strict non-fat diet until his gallbladder is removed (the test confirmed that he has gall stones that are too big to be removed without removing the entire gallbladder) later this year.

This all made my last couple weeks a 'little bit' stressful. Things are much better now and everything is getting back to a routine, but I found myself in the position to learn very quickly what foods are included in a low-fat diet. Actually this is going to be a good exercise for both Dave and me. And, of course, there's always a way to clever-up some mini-bagels, jam, and fruit, right?

Low Fat breakfast, bagel, jam, and banana

(I'm not sure Dave appreciated my efforts to create this low-fat 'Happy Meal!')

In between back-and-forth trips to the hospital to check up on Dave's progress, I managed to steal away some time to finish up a couple of near-complete projects. This hummingbird cross stitch quilt that was started earlier this year is complete.

This has been a detailed step-by-step process: Cross stitch the main image, add the border in one piece with my sneaky applique technique, layer and machine quilt the borders, quilt the center with seed stitches by hand, embellish the border seam with four different blue perle cotton colors, then bind.

Hummingbird Cross stitch quilt wall hanging

Hummingbird cross stitch wall hanging close up border embellishments

The photos in full sunshine, don't effectively convey the varied texture and dimension all these steps added to this wall-hanging piece.

It's going to go in the Genesee Valley Quilt Fest show later next month. So if you're in the area, you will be able to get up close and personal there.

Hummingbird cross sittch wall hanging quilt

This table topper (approximately 40" across) featuring four 8" blocks from The FLOCK is also complete. Last time I mentioned it here, I think it still needed a bit of quilting and the binding. All that is done now.

I am hoping to include this pattern as a bonus pattern for FLOCK members soon, but, understandably, the pattern is off to a somewhat slow start. . soon is as best I can promise right now.

Four block bird table topper, bonus pattern for the FLOCK

The first couple days at the hospital meant a lot of sitting and waiting for test results and doctor visits and updates. I was glad to have my Erica Michaels alphabet project, and the letter "F" and all necessary threads and tools ready to go in a project pouch. 

alphabet letter F stitich pattern from Erica Michaels

I started this block during hospital visiting times, and completed the 'foxy' F block just a couple days ago. 'G' and its featured Goose are up next.

alphabet letter E and F sttich pattern from Erica Michaels

I am continuing to incorporate the stitching/border technique I'm developing for stitchy/quilty combination stuff.

I keep promising more how-to details, and they will come, but this isn't the week. The process has lots of steps, but I really like the end result. Hey, if you've spent the time on the stitching, what's a few extra steps to make a dramatic finish, right?

More to come on this, I promise!

alphabet letter F sttich pattern from Erica Michaels, close up of border treatment

And then, of course, I'm a "Game of Thrones" follower - read the books, watched the series from the start.

These socks with the Seven Kingdoms' sigils, a gift from a friend, put me in the appropriate attitude for the first episode of the final season.

Game or thrones socks

Happy Stitching! And Happy Easter!



  1. (((dave)))
    You don't cross stitch in a frame? I've never tried it without, but I've seen projects finished completely out of shape by others ;) Any tips? Do you tape your edges? Sharyn

    1. ((thx))
      Not a frame, but a hoop. You can see a little corner of the hoop in the photo of this piece here (scroll all the way down):

    2. I don't tape the edges, but I do zig zag along the edge with the sewing machine to keep the fraying down.

    3. I agree, I don't think I'd enjoy the process without a hoop to keep the cross stitch fabric flat. I also used a hoop (a bigger one) when I did the hand quilting on the hummingbird.