Monthly Archives: February 2009

The sisterhood gathers…

…and portentous signs, wonders and deeds are in the offing. Or something like that. No, we’re not the Continental Congress or even the 21 century version of that esteemed body, but when we gather things get done. (I do wish we had their budget! :-)) So let the Earth tremble as the High Test Estrogen Fest begins!

This coming weekend at approximately 10 p.m. on Thursday night the festivities will commence with the arrival of dear friend Janet on my doorstep.  She is  coming almost 300 miles just to be with us. I imagine it will be a late night as we catch up. It has been wayyyy too long since we had a chance to put our feet under the same table and have a good visit whilst knitting and sipping tea.

Friday will involve a trip to Amazing Threads, one of the finest purveyors of yarn and all manner of knitting esoterica in the country.  Because we are taking a cabled vest class on Sunday, we need to invest in yarn, needles, cable needles, pattern and all manner of fun stuff.   After shopping, I will keep my appointment with the king’s torturers (aka: trainers and cardiac rehab folks).  I gotta do it, because Ms. Janet has promised to bring her specialty…Red Velvet cake. Do you really think I’m going to say ‘no thanks’?  No, I’ll just do 25 extra minutes on something. 🙂

Friday evening the entire sisterhood, save D’Arcy (not making the trip from the east coast, but still with us in heart) will be gathering at Old Chicago restaurant in Minnetonka for a bit of dinner. In addition, to having a nicely varied menu, Old Chicago has one other great advantage as a meeting place. It is a block down from the largest needlework store in Minneapolis Can you say…CCCHHHHAAARRRRGGGGEEEE!!!  We hope a lot of the new Nashville pieces will be out and we plan to fall off the wagon together…probably with a resounding thud!

Saturday is reserved for stitching, talking and probably a bit of eating here at the house, with dinner out following. I will be making some soup and chili, cracking a bottle of good red wine and relaxing with some of the best women in the universe! We will also be divvying up the pot for the 2008 Sisterhood Challenge. I will NOT be a winner, but it was still really good for me!

Sunday is knitting class for Janet and I and Monday…well, that’s for recovery. 🙂

I am…excited, blessed and will share some photos of the event next week.

May your weekend hold both stitches and times with loved ones.




I am soooooo…

…ready for spring! We had a gorgeous weekend here but the last two days the temps have fallen back below zero. I guess I’m getting old. I love winter, but weeks of weather this cold is a pain.

Well, enough whining. It is time for me to respond to the comments left here yesterday. First of all…at the beginning of the year I ALWAYS think my goals are doable. 🙂 I am the incurable optimist!  I have to be the incurable optimist…because as those of you who have seen my stash know…I have a lot to accomplish in this life.  So…onwards and upwards.

Second, hi mom!!! Thanks for stopping by. As I recall we are going to be doing a lot of lunching in the warm, soft breezes of the Caribbean in just a couple weeks. But be prepared, I am bringing stitching! After all, I’ve got goals. Maybe you’ll even catch the bug. Maybe?

So, yesterday. What did I do? I worked a bit on getting the studio/sewing room habitable and I knitted about 4 inches on the baby afghan I hope to finish by the end of the month. Good progress.  I don’t have a photo because DH has the camera, but I love the way this little blanket is coming out. It is double knit (holding 2 colors of yarn together) in a beautiful soft white and soft blue.  I’m a little afraid because it’s time for me to change skeins and the last one (white) proved a nightmare of epic proportions, involving two people and about 3 hours untangling it to a point of usability. (Thank you Paula and Ray!) I hope this one goes better.

In addition to my needlework I exercised for 45 minutes and saw my doctor. Things are looking pretty good, given the way I started my year. In January I only missed three days of exercise, after I got permission to start (about the 7th), I lost 11 pounds and halved my insulin usage. I feel much better.

One exciting non-needlework goal is to ride the Minnesota Ironman Bike Tour (30, 62, 100 miles on a bike). This is an annual ride at the end of April and I, of course, will be riding the 30 mile loop…this year anyway.  I need to get my nether regions prepared for the the ride as well as making sure I have the lung capacity to suck in that much air. But it’s a good way to get started on conditioning. DH and I used to enjoy long trail rides together and I am looking forward to getting back to those this summer.

Since my bike is over ten years old and has seen better days, I bought a new Trek cross bike last weekend. It will be coming home at the end of March and I am really looking forward to riding it. It has both front and post suspension, so I’m hoping those nether regions will be standing in line to thank me. 🙂 Or is that sitting in line?  Whatever.  It is also my very first step-through bike since I was very young. I like that feature, especially as I seem to be getting older.  It’s…are you ready?  It’s purple.  All I need is a red helmet (I have a gray one right now) and I’m ready to go!

And right now I need to get ready to go in a different way. It’s off to work, then to work out and then…ah, then…I get to settle in with my stitching.  What a great incentive to keep moving through my day.

Here’s hoping you all have a productive, wonderful and stitchy day!



It is the third of February…

…and I am just beginning to look at goals for my needlework year. How sad is that??? But, I do have a good um…excuse.   I lost the month of January to a New Year’s day heart attack and the subsequent lifestyle alterations I am making to ensure that I will have the 300 years here on this earth necessary to stitch my stash. 🙂  So now, not only will I be a stitcher…I will be an athelete too. Scary, huh? I hope to discover there IS such a thing as aerobic needlework.

So, 2008. How did I do? Well, I didn’t achieve any one of my Sisterhood Goals. I fell off the wagon three times. But that is opposed to way more times than that in previous years. I didn’t finish my Emie Bishop hardarger piece, but I did get all of the Kloster work and a lot of the cross stitch done. I didn’t finish the Kingsland Sampler. This is my biggest disappointment and  is going to get more attention this year. It’s for two special people and I would like to have it done before they head overseas late this summer. More on this in 2009 goals. I didn’t finish 25 projects. But I did make progress and I renewed my knitting skills.  I began Japanese embroidery classes and started work on Phase I.  In addition I finished two lovely counted needlepoint pieces and three smaller counted pieces. All in all, I completed ten projects, including some gifts. I also finished and passed the first level submission in the ANG Master Needle Artist program.

All in all, it wasn’t a bad year for me.

As always, I have big dreams for this year. Okay, I have really big dreams for this year…never mind that one month is already gone with nothing but a bit of knitting done. But, nothing ventured, nothing gained. Here are my 15 goals for 2009.

1. Update this blog at LEAST twice a week. I love ‘My Needle in Hand’ because it keeps me focused and on track with my needlework.

2. Finish and submit the next level projects for my ANG Master Craftsman.

3. Finish my Japanese embroidery Phase I project and begin Phase II.

4. Finish the Kingsland Ancestral Sampler no later than July 15, so I can have framed and given by the beginning of August.

5. (Start and) Finish four charted needlepoint pieces. (These can be WIPS or new ones out of stash)

6. (Start and) Finish 2 painted canvas needlepoint projects. (These can be WIPS or new ones out of stash)

7. Finish the Kingsland Ancestral Sampler

8. Finish the Emie Bishop Hardanger piece

9. Finish the Colinette Meadow afghan (nope, still not done :-()

10. Finish knitted baby blanket by the end of February.

11.  Start and finish a knitted sweater or vest.

12. Develop at least one teaching piece and hold class.

13. Cull stash, sell it here, on EBay or at Guild sale. (Watch for future postings)

14.  Start one small piece each in crewel, beading and blackwork

15. Start and finish quilted Christmas tree skirt kit.

‘There’…she says, dusting her hands off on her sweats…’that ought to keep me busy’.

My biggest challenge is simply to remain focused when I have the time to give to my needlework.  I want to improve my skills, make a dent in my stash and enjoy the company of my stitching sisters.  One thing I don’t want is for my stitching to become a chore or a stressor. Life is too short and too precious. Amen? So, yes these are my goals, I’m going to do my best and call it good.

In other news…I have finally transferred my bookmarks to the new computer, so I will be catching up on my blog reading as I have time over this month. Yippee! I’ve missed you all!

Here’s hoping each one of you has had a happy and ‘stitchy’ start to your new year.