Harvest Moon WIPocalypse

Mase took these photos last night, as we headed down the North Western motorway to pick up Dad. A cell phone can’t capture the sheer size and the colour – no wonder the American Indians & Maori (among others) called this a Harvest Moon.

My September has been all about my round robin prep. This was a love/hate relationship for sure and I AM NEVER USING DMC SATINS AGAIN. Until next time. However I am finished with the frames & thinking that they do look amazing – even if I had to dig in my ORT jar to finish the top leg of the last 20 or so stitches! Playing thread chicken is not as fun as you might think.

I’ve also finalised my layout, and the lovely Elizabeth has come to my rescue and has ordered Bluebeard’s Princess mermaid for me (www.stitchnz.co.nz) so while I may have to post the intended portion on the FB group, I will have it in time for someone else to stitch. Just not Mel in Australia – but there’s four others for her to choose from. My start is the Queen Mermaid – but I’m thinking about adapting her “purse” to either a treasure box (Atlantis-type) or a shell, like this one I found on Pinterest:


I am looking forward to Christmas 2017 when I should get this one back! First posting isn’t for 3 weeks, so Queenie will be done by then.


Question of the Month

Tell us a story about the journey you took through one of your completed pieces.


This is one of my favourites – the first I completed and had framed intending to keep! Which was a Big Deal, as it marked 10 years of stitching history. This is Bran’s birth sampler, the Alma Lynne Noah’s Ark Collector. I still have the chart…but I can’t find it in online stores, sorry, so it must be OOP.


It’s the first that I re-charted portions on – I added personalisation to include Bran’s name, DOB. I used Kreinik for the first time (the lightning bolt) and I gave myself permission to stop angsting over those French knots. Beads all the way! This hangs in our hallway and even at 16, B still appreciates it. There’s true love for you!

Movie Review – In-Lawfully Yours

inlawfully-yoursFollowing both the death of her father-in-law and a divorce, Jesse, a New Yorker, returns to a small town to live with her now widowed mother-in-law. Jesse struggles to fit in with the local townsfolk who don’t welcome her with open arms to say the least. Jesse becomes acquainted with the local pastor, her widowed brother-in-law, falling in love with him, much to the dismay of the community. Things get even more complicated when her ex-husband comes calling, suspiciously trying to win her back. Between her love life and entangled in-laws, Jesse is tested as she seeks the answer to where she truly belongs.

For an interview with Marilu Henner: http://www.gospelherald.com/articles/66576/20160916/in-lawfully-yours-actress-marilu-henner-discusses-new-faith-based-romantic-comedy.htm

Trailer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DL0Y68422Gw

Take-away concept:  the importance of embracing everyone – no matter where they are on their (faith) journey.

This one popped up on my Netflix queue yesterday as I was having a hermit day (solo parenting 4 kids is no joke, peeps). I do like Henner’s work, and think she’s really funny as an actress, and her performance didn’t disappoint. I’d never seen some of the other actors (clearly I stopped with the Grey’s Anatomy too early) but they also seemed well cast. I particularly liked Erin Muroski as Daphne.

Three quarters of this movie is good, bordering on great. Some of Jessie’s dialogue definitely made me smile. My only issue is the ending – it was too neat & I didn’t feel that the baddies got their comeuppance. I guess as a book it would work better – SPOILER ALERT – you’d understand why Ben felt it was time to move on, and why Doris is so judgemental but I guess that is one reflection of how some Christians are.

Don’t look to this movie to answer any of the big questions but it’s one to relax with & safe for the younger tween/teen girls who look for a rom-com.

3 ½ stars (out of 5).

Sharing is Caring: & so is doing good :)

Last month I chatted with Chris Marlow because I love what he’s about: reminding us that we can do good in small, simple ways, right where we are. And those small, simple things can be a force for major global change. In this conversation, Chris and I talk about his experience starting a nonprofit organization,…

via Podcast ep. 41: Doing good is simple — The Art of Simple

Book Review: Just One Thing by Holly Jacobs

jot“Sometimes, you find yourself inadvertently in the dark. But I’d discovered that if you stopped fighting against it and just stood still, sometimes something marvellous comes along.”

Artist Lexie McCain spends her days literally weaving the story of her life into a gorgeous tapestry. But on Monday nights, she walks to the Corner Bar, drinks a Killian’s, and answers the same question every week from Sam the bartender: “One thing?” She starts with her name, then her cottage, slowly moving on to the devastating tragedies that tore her life apart.

Sam Corner’s smile doesn’t seem to hide any pain. One night, Lexie turns the tables on him, asking Sam, “One thing?” To her surprise, Sam reveals his own tragic history. Together, Lexie and Sam learn that, with good beer and a trusted friend, sharing just “one thing” might lead to the one thing they both thought was lost forever: love.

From award-winning author Holly Jacobs comes the story of heartache, hope, and the power of sharing just one thing.


This one popped up thru my Kindle for Samsung app as a freebie. It’s not free anymore, but still cheap – and I totally recommend it. This author’s been around for a while (mainstream and HMB) & I’ll be picking up some more. First I think will be “I Waxed My Legs for This?”🙂

I read this on-and-off as my “appointment” book, so it’s been about two months total since I started it. The short chapters and flowing dialogue make it easy to read, & I didn’t manage to confuse it with the others I read during this time. The themes of getting knocked down then needing to find strength to go on are universal. The characters (like the ones I recently reviewed by Susan Mallery) are carefully crafted and realistic, and most importantly (if you’re going to get a message from this book) – likeable. The romance is secondary to character growth, there’s little PDA (so if you have littlies and listen to audio books, this is safe). Just get it.

For an excerpt, or book club questions, click here http://www.hollyjacobs.com/JustOneThing.html

Solo September SAL

Reading today’s blog digest lead me to this SAL – just what I need to get committed to the large stitch Mirabilia round robin I was invited to join. Andie is organising it, & she’d be one of my favourite people.

I decided on Mermaids, got the Simon input (vertical, so it will hang in a certain spot in the house), sorted designs, then got a mad hair on and decided to stitch the “frames” in a shiny thread. Couldn’t get to Ribbon Rose and I was too impatient to mail order, so I grabbed a DMC satin.

Never again. I am not enjoying this part of the process at all!


The fabric is actually much deeper than this picture: Catherine @ CountryStitch’s Cook Strait, in a 28ct lugana (my fav). The frame is from Cathy Habermann’s Chalk Christmas ornaments set II.

Sharing is Caring: Smartest Person podcast

As you know, I listen to quite a few podcasts. One of them is Sorta Awesome, which is made by Megan Tietz & features some regular co-hosts. I love the ridiculous and interesting bits that make up this podcast, and it’s always good to look for the little awesomes in your life (and I am NOT talking kids here. Not).

cover170x170Anyways, Laura Tremaine now has her own podcast, Smartest Person in the Room. It’s available thru iTunes and the android app Podcast Addict (so I’m sure it’s available elsewhere).

Description : Laura Tremaine is not the smartest person in the room, but she knows someone who is. Driven by her belief that we all learn, grow, and become better when we surround ourselves with people who are smarter than us, she’ll take you along to meet people who are brilliant in their fields. With the casual tone of the best dinner party conversation you’ve ever had, Smartest Person in the Room offers fascinating, funny, and thought-provoking learning you won’t want to miss!


Review: Daughters of the Bride

cover-daughtersDaughters of the Bride – Susan Mallery, July 2016, HQN Books

Courtney ~ The Misfit ~

As the awkward one, Courtney Watson may not be as together as her sisters, but she excels at one thing—keeping secrets, including her white-hot affair with a sexy music producer. Planning Mom’s wedding exposes her startling hidden life, changing her family’s view of her—and how she views herself—forever.

Sienna ~ The Free Spirit ~

When Sienna’s boyfriend proposes—in front of her mom and sisters, for crying out loud—he takes her by surprise. She already has two broken engagements under her belt. Should she say “I do” even if she’s not sure she does?

Rachel ~ The Cynic ~

Rachel thought love would last forever…right up until her divorce. As Mom’s wedding day draws near and her ex begs for a second chance, she’s forced to acknowledge some uncomfortable truths about why her marriage failed, and decide if she’ll let pride stand in the way of her own happily ever after.

This book links into Mallery’s Mischief Bay series (see here for my reviews  ) which I loved. This title is one I’d solidly rate 4 stars also; it ticked nearly every box. I would put myself in the Rachel camp, so I’ve learnt something from this book – it is okay not to expect the same effort in bathroom hygiene from my boys as I would put in, but it’s definitely okay to give them a checklist for guidance!

  • Well drawn characters
  • Believable plot
  • Consistency in character behavior
  • Consistency in story line
  • The animals didn’t hurt the story either!

IRL, I have not lost more weight altho I have stayed static for the last two weeks. I can however slide my jeans off without undoing them and I need new bras. This is progress! Simon’s torn some cartilage in his knee, and is on a wait for surgery. Understandably, he’s in discomfort most of the time and outright pain at other times. Yesterday I picked up a brace – and we both slept solidly. 7 hours or so my Polar tells me! Apart from the night he fell asleep on the couch, I haven’t had more than five to five-and-a-half hours for a few weeks. I’m hoping this is the start of a beautiful friendship. It’s very hard to get up at 5am and go swimming without restful sleep!

20160814_205158I didn’t stitch for a couple of weeks, but then I binged a little over the last weekend and finished Afternoon in London! It’s currently on my noticeboard here at work, as I need to make time and go to the framers in Mt Eden. I’ve started the Harry Potter House Banners for Z, and it’s BORING. Seriously boring. It’s going to be a Netflix binge watch to get thru these things. I have also joined up a large format (5K stitches) round robin – what was I thinking?!



IMG_20160816_213950.jpgMase is collecting the Countdown Star Wars cards right about now. He wrote Pete, our COO, this cute letter to say thanks! It’s one for his 21st wall.