Saturday, January 28, 2017

End of January 2017...

~ Greetings and Warm Welcome ~
my dear friends

January...
what a blur it has been. January was rung in and basically it was a trumpet blaring the beginning of a race. I don't like life when I feel like it is set as if on a foot race.
Since January 6, there have been four deaths in our parish. I am the funeral luncheon lady at our church so that means, organizing the events, calling for food, ordering chicken....then of course on the day of the funeral getting there really early in the morning to set up, make drinks, set tables, get all the dishes, silverware, on and on...
I love to serve the families, I just can't believe all the funerals we have had at our parish in the last year. It has been one right after the other and nearly like a part-time job. Yesterday was #4, and it was an all-day affair. Let's hope that is the last one for awhile, myself and all my helpers - the servers, the food preparers, the cleaner-uppers...we all need a break. May it be so.

I have been stitching...
although I may not have gotten done what I really wanted to get done.
In fact I have to go back and look at my Instagram Account (@vonnapfeiffer) where I post stitching updates nearly every day...it really is a good way to track your progress, as if shows like a daily diary via pictures of what you stitched! Try it, you all might like it :)

I started on January 12...
my RST Sampler House, and everything was going gangbusters. Here was one evening of stitching: 

Untitled

Then the next day, I finished the entire square! I was so happy until I realized that I was over 2 stitches (THE WHOLE BLOCK) to the right....psssst: look at the flower above...you can see that the flower stem leaves are right on the edge of the snow (on the right side) of the square above... then see on the left hand side the flower stem leaves are two stitches inside the grass of the square above) WHAT WAS I THINKING???
...it was in the ditch and not lined up correctly...

UGH... rrrrribbbitttt...

So...
that took the wind right out of my sails for a couple of evenings and horror of horrors. I didn't stitch like for 7 evenings. (I NEVER not stitch...so that shows ~ I really was messed up in the head).

Here it is after I picked the entire block out.

Untitled

Then after pouting those 7 evenings, I decided to pick myself back up and get busy. 
Two nights later on January 22, 2017:
It was finished :)

Untitled


And here, my friends, is my 
Little House Needleworks 
"ABC Samplers" 
series all on one piece of fabric to date:
ABC Samplers Jan 2017

this photo is completely true to color in real life. 
The fabric is: Vintage Exampler by Lakeside Linens 32 ct. 
I've used all the called for threads. 
I haven't done the box frames around each individual piece as charted and created my own frame around it. And I have decided against a verse (I had one charted, but am afraid it will detract) so I have a new finish at the bottom all figured out! You will have to wait and see! The next pattern has arrived in my mailbox and I will get to it as soon as I can! I can't wait...I am SO CLOSE! to a finish!


Last Sunday...
after the victory of correctly completing the RST square. I decided that I next would stitch something that has been in my "want to stitch" basket. Today, January 28, I finished it. And I'm SO excited to share it with you!

LHN_Land of the Free

"Land of the Free" 
by Little House Needleworks
~ a thread pack available through Classic Colorworks ~
This one is stitched on 28 ct. Evenweave (MCG textiles) that I "baked and basted" myself with tea and coffee. Remember (for my longtime followers) when I did this a lot? For my newbies (or to refresh the oldies) HERE is the how and the why..
Anyway...I couldn't find anything that I had that had the "look" I wanted and so...I decided to pull some of my own dye lot and man it hit the mark!

This one will be framed and hung in my "Patriotic Room"
I know exactly the frame...and I have some ideas.
(Notice that I added a JABCO star for the pot. I love that)

I stitched a portion of this design the year it came out (2015) and made it into a pocket watch necklace: 
Land of the Free Pocket Watch Necklace

Yep...pretty much loved it then too...

So after I got this darling one all stitched up...
I went down to my personal needlework shop in my cave this morning and picked up this:

Untitled

"Long May She Wave"
by Little House Needleworks...
Here you will see that I have the thread colors laid out next to each other...
I was so happy with the way "Land of the Free" came out and the colors that just hit that "prim/country" look that I really like and matches in my home so well that I wondered if I could change a few of the colors. So here I was laying out the reds: Ruby Slippers was changed to Manor House (that was in Land of the Free) and Spinach was changed to Weeping Willow (that was from Land of the Free) that's going to give it the look I want in the red and blues. I am keeping the Blacksmith Blue, Eggshell and Roasted Chestnut. I am going to frame all of these separate, in the same frames, as a grouping on the wall and I want them to look similar.

Then when I cut another piece off my "own personal hand dye" vintage and laid it all out:

Untitled

WHAMO! isn't that going to be PERFECT?!

OH can't wait...
but I have to finish up a model first before sinking ONE stitch into this one...but I'm anxious!

Now then...
speaking about Little House and Patriotic Room.....
I'm certain that most of you have seen this announcement?


Well.... do I need to even think about it? 
NO!
I'll be setting up an Instagram Stitch-A-long, if you are interested. 
They can be stitched as one and/or as the small pillows. I'm stitching on one. And I think I'm going to dye my own vintage hank of fabric to my own personal specifications for this. We. Will. See.

Have I told you lately how much I love stitching? 
I am truly finding joy in my own stitching journey again. 
I was overloading myself.
too. much.
I am my own best stitching SELF when I am doing what I love and for me!
spreading the joy with others about my personal stitching...encouraging others...enabling them.
That's what I do best. I know where my talents lie.

Speaking of Joy...and journeys....
I had a "God" moment and want to share it with you.
I am really trying very hard to make 2017 MY YEAR of personal evolution.
So I'm reading my bible daily working toward a personal goal of reading the complete thing from 
"In the beginning.." to "Amen."
It is going well. In fact... I am enjoying it so much. I look forward to my time with the bible and the Lord every day. I also am trying to incorporate some reading from other authors that speak to spiritual matters throughout the week.
(Now I still read smut too, but sneaking a few minutes of something mind growing makes me feel good about my mind trashing reads)


So anyway...I digress...
this week I heard - from one of my coworkers at one of the funeral luncheons (there were two this week) - about how it is a "dying to self".... and I had never heard that phrase before (or if I did I had buried it deep into the - I don't want to hear it now crevice in my brain). It struck me... this phrase: dying to self....and I came home and began to research it with my bible and in all the blogs/people I read on spiritual matters.

"For whoever wishes to save his life will lose it; but whoever loses his life for My sake will find it." ~Matthew 16:25

Hmmm...I do that...right? I don't need to worry about that. I do that.

Well ....two days later after hearing this phrase, I was reading one of my spiritual growth books and right there in black and white....printed on the page:
...DYING TO SELF...

Whoa! That was twice in like 3 days that this phrase had jumped out at me. 
I'm doing that Lord...that's what I kept thinking. I do for others, I follow you.

Yesterday... at the funeral of a well respected parishioner, I was asked to sing the mass and hymns of the service. I was right up by the alter. Our pastor was giving the eulogy. He is a very wonderful speaker and always I glean much from his sermons and eulogies. He inspires "to be of things of heaven", he really does. Anyway, he's giving the eulogy and right there, with me sitting 20 feet away from him he says, "it is a 'dying to self' ..."

WHAT!?!?!? THREE Times in FIVE days that phrase was given to me.
What did I do right then and there?
I bowed my head and said in my heart, "I hear you Lord, you don't have to smack me with a wet noodle, I hear." So apparently, God is asking me to "dye to myself" and you know what? He's right. I have a pride problem. You can't dye to self with a pride problem. I've spoken to you before about complaining. I do that too. So...with my head screwed on straight and the Lord nearly having to smack me upside the head....I got the message! 

Last night I did some more research...
I can't say it anymore eloquently than Jan Johnson did on her article printed here:


I've got work to do and I'm going to do it!

Have you made it down here?
Thank you, if you have.
I don't often tell you how much I love each and every one of you. 
I do, you know.
And you bring a smile to my face. 
Each visit, each comment, each e-mail.
Brightens my day.

Thank you.

Love and hugs in stitches,
Vonna xxxx


30 comments:

  1. Hi Vonna, don't you hate it when the frog prince visits - he comes around my house quite regularly, too. Anyway your ABCs look fabulous as does your patriotic stitching and thank you for the heads up re the new LHN series - I have just PMed my LNS to order it for me! lol! I also have an Americana SAL blog (as well as my main blog, Kitten Stitching), so it is a perfect series for me! Lastly, I wish you well on your personal journey this year. K xxx

    ReplyDelete
  2. Oh that's so frustrating about the frogging. A beautiful finish once you got back to it though, and nice on the rest. Hope things slow down a little for you!

    ReplyDelete
  3. Hi Vonna. What a beautiful post. Your stitching is beautiful and sharing your God moment was especially meaningful to me. Something that I really need to hear and something that is very much in sync with other reading that I have been doing. I so appreciate you and all that you share. Take care and remember to be kind to you.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Hi Vonna. I enjoyed your post very much today. But I NEED to thank you for the link to Jan Johnson's article. This was so very, very good. Can you imagine how wonderful the world would be if we all took baby steps to become like this? I hope other followers of yours click that link above and read that article and decide to make a change. I am! Thanks again my friend! ♥

    ReplyDelete
  5. Sorry about the frogging, but everything looks really pretty now. I am not as spiritual as you are, but I did enjoy reading your entire post and I do believe that God leads us in the directions that we need.

    ReplyDelete
  6. Wow Vonna...I pray to that you don't need to be called upon for awhile from church either....my gosh your stitching is beautiful as usual love it all in one piece..such an interesting journey you are on one we could all try to be better at as well..will look forward to seeing all your beautiful stitched pieces😘, blessings

    ReplyDelete
  7. Sorry about the frog visit, but your RST block turned out great as did the Land of the Free. Your posts always inspire me to look deeply into and at myself. Thank you for sharing your journey and thank you for the link. Enjoy the rest of your weekend.

    ReplyDelete
  8. Vonna, your stitching is always beautiful! I find real inspiration in the pieces you choose to stitch and the ways your finish them -- thank you so much for sharing all of your needlework talents. And thank you also for sharing that wonderful article -- I needed to read that tonight and feel that reminder. I really appreciate all that you share.

    ReplyDelete
  9. Sorry to read about your frog visit. RST looks great now. You picked the perfect fabric for Land of the Free.

    ReplyDelete
  10. First, sorry about the frog visit. I am doing that design too so I know just what you mean. I was excited to see the new designs. I think a sew along would be fun. As soon as I finish I am going to read that article. I know just what you mean. I'm sure the Lord would often like to hit me on the side of the head about something I am doing or more often not doing!

    ReplyDelete
  11. Bless you for helping with the funerals at church. The families are always so thankful for the luncheons offered after the funeral of a loved one. I have been on the receiving end at our church and it meant so much to me and my family.

    I love seeing your stitching projects. So beautiful !! Oh the frog.........been there, done that. I'm so happy to share your passion for stitching.

    Thanks for sharing your blog with us; it is always a pleasure to read.

    ReplyDelete
  12. Love your alphabet houses - they are really beautiful. And thanks too for your honesty on having to rip one out and then losing your stitching mojo! Glad it came back quickly because I love to see what you're working on. Hope Feb is a little slower funeral month for you.

    ReplyDelete
  13. I'm glad your stitching is providing you with so much joy, Vonna! And I wish you well on your journey this year :)

    I think January is always filled with more deaths than usual. I am in charge of the memorial book giving program at the library and have noticed many more deaths this month, too. I think many just want to live through 'one more Christmas' and then they let go...

    Your little house sampler is so darling and I'm sure it is a joy to stitch (as long as that nasty frog isn't visiting!). And I look forward to watching your new patriotic piece grow--another to add to my 'must-stitch' list :)

    Happy Sunday, dear Vonna--and I hope February is filled with lots of love!

    ReplyDelete
  14. Vonna.... you have done so much for the world of cross stitch. I for one thank you for that. Our Lord is using you in ways you can't even imagine. Love you girl!

    ReplyDelete
  15. I just listened to the Podcast and it was just wonderful. I cannot express how much I enjoy your spirit. Thank you for all the great tips.....I am one of those who leaves way too much space around on my finishes.....working on that!

    ReplyDelete
  16. Sorry there was so much frogging to get done, but... it was worth it for sure! Looking forward to the final chapters of that piece! Also, the fabric you dyed for your patriotic pieces is gorgeous! They are going to look great in your room. Hugs!

    ReplyDelete
  17. Thank you for sharing that link at the end! I'm not a religious person but a friend and I had just been discussing a version of 'dying to self' last week. Very inspiring and I now have it marked to go back to in the future.

    ReplyDelete
  18. I have never heard the phrase so I will researching it Thanks for the link. Your stitching is awesome! I haven't done instagram but i might be stitching along with you anyway.

    ReplyDelete
  19. Thank you Vonna for sharing your spiritual journey.

    ReplyDelete
  20. What a lovely post Vonna. I'm sorry to read about your frog visit, so frustrating. So glad you picked this one up again and stitched the gorgeous house. This design didn't really grab me at first but seeing yours stitched as one piece...well, it looks beautiful.
    Good luck on your personal faith journey this year.

    ReplyDelete
  21. I love love love your ABC Sampler, Vonna. It looks so great!
    Happy to read that you enjoy your stitching that much. I some kind of lost my stitching mojo and I am missing it, when I read about your joy here.

    Have some wonderful last days of January!

    Hugs
    Hilda

    ReplyDelete
  22. Sorry about your frogging but it sure looks beautiful now and that's all that matters. Love your other finish and your new pieces you'll be starting soon. Good luck with them!! Thanks for sharing.

    ReplyDelete
  23. I have a pride problem too. admitting you have a problem is part of the fix (I hope) Loved the podcast - it was fun and you were great ! I think in your quest to make Twisted Stitcher bigger and better you need to start dyeing and selling your linen. Lots of people do it on a small scale - you don't have to do an Etsy shop - you could just do on an announcement/first come first served basis. You can probably set up a commercial account to buy the linen. You don't have to go big - just go comfortable and see where it leads if you don't like doing it for others - just stop. I'd buy some :) keep doing what you love ! I have to admit - I would have had a very hard time pulling out that RST - I think I would have adjusted and rocked on. I'm lazy that way ! have a great week - Mel

    ReplyDelete
  24. I think your little frogging event was a message from God. Enjoy the journey. You are letting people know it's okay to fall. Just get up again. xxoo

    ReplyDelete
  25. I used to work as a florist and the month after Christmas was always full of funeral work. It's tough, but like another person commented, the work you do is such a comfort to the families as everything is taken care of with grace and efficiency.
    Whenever we read spiritual texts we elevate our consciousness so it's no surprise you heard a spiritual message. I think the fact you heard it so many times is a wonderful affirmation of just how this works. I saw a video years ago, where a young evangelist was saying how there are burning bushes everywhere, but we just don't see them because we are slogged down in the everyday. Perhaps this message has been coming to you for a while, but only recently in your journey to read the entire Bible have you opened a window to hear it. I think it's neat, and you have inspired me to resume my Pray-as-you-go daily app.
    Happy Days!
    Jenn

    ReplyDelete
  26. URGH - gotta hate that frog! Sorry that happened. I'm the same way, I have to step away and give it a little time before I can go back. I'm glad you persevered, though, cause it's such a pretty block! :D Love the hand-dyed fabric, too, it works so well with the design!

    ReplyDelete
  27. Your stitching is awesome. Sorry that nasty frog visited but it looks so lovely. Love your hand dyed fabric.
    Your road of faith is so inspiring and reminds me to have hope in my faith filled life that I can do so much better. Thank you.

    ReplyDelete
  28. The ABC sampler is looking gorgeous ... even if you have had a visit from the frog. Your other stitching is lovely too and looks so good on your own hand-dyed fabric.

    ReplyDelete
  29. Sorry about the frogging, but your piece is absolutely gorgeous!! You will have many stars in your crown from providing the service you do for funerals. It truly makes a difference for all of the families. I am older than you so I have heard "dying to one's self" many times; it is just hard to do and keep doing, so easy to stray from the path. Blessings to you for your Bible reading and your journey in 2017. Hugs coming your way...............

    ReplyDelete
  30. How horrible having to do all that frogging but the reworked piece looks every bit as good. I love the enthusiasm you have for your stitching and your life in general. It comes through in your blogging.

    ReplyDelete

Thank you for following me on my blog. If you have any questions, please ensure that your e-mail is left or associated with your profile so that I may contact you. Or you may contact me personally at: thetwistedstitcher@comcast.net
My sincere thanks for taking the time to comment!
~Vonna
The Twisted Stitcher