Monday, August 31, 2009

July Cup 'O Tea

Another finish! The July Cup 'O Tea was finished this weekend. Only 5 more tea cups to stitch.

When Just Another Button Company releases the 2010 Stitch Every Day Series, will someone please remind me not to order it?

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Airport Stitching - June Cup 'O Tea

I have been posting about my travels, but not much about the stitching I have been doing while traveling.

There wasn't much time to stitch things besides the cruise project recently, but the day I flew home from Seattle I did get this piece done. I had stitched a part of it on the flight to Seattle, but stitched the majority on the looooonnnnggg trip home. I left the hotel at 4 am and arrived at my house at 10:30 pm. It was a day filled with engine trouble, missed connections and weather delays. It has taken me less time to fly home from Europe!

Anyway, this is the June Cup 'O Tea from Just Another Button Company stitched over 2 threads on 30 count Weeks Dye Works line with 2 strands of Gentle Arts Sampler Threads and Weeks Dye Works threads.

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Seattle, Day 2

Saturday morning, Nancy and I set out at the crack of 10 to do some more sight seeing in Seattle. We parked near the space needle, and walked around the base. Neither one of us had any desire to stand in line for hours to go to the top.

Right across the street from the space needle was the ticket office for Ride the Ducks Seattle. It seemed like a fun way to see the city, so off we went....

The "captain" was very informative and entertaining. He wore many hats as the day progressed.

We saw Qwest field, home of the Seattle Seahawks football team and the Seattle Sounders FC, the MLS soccer team.

Right next door is Safeco Field, home of the Seattle Mariners MLB team. Tony would be proud to know I have visited both of these import landmarks.

The weather was great for riding around in a vehicle with open sides. And the scenery was very pretty. We learned allot about the history of Seattle.

Since a "duck" can travel on water as well as on land, we were able to cruise around Lake Union. It was a lovely "cruise".

We were able to see the floating home ( or houseboat) that was used in the filming of Sleepless in Seattle.

We also saw Gas Works Park, where a few other films were shot but I can't remember which ones right now.
After the duck tour it was time to go back to the hotel. Nancy needed to get home to her family and I needed to make it an early night as I had a 6 am flight the next morning.
All good things must come to an end, and so ends my vacation.

Friday, August 28, 2009

Back on Dry Land; Seattle, Day 1

Friday morning we arrived back in the Port of Seattle, and it was time to get off the boat. I had arranged to meet Nancy, who drove down from Vancouver, so we could explore Seattle together.

Friday's adventure was to visit Pike Place Market. Having read all the the "Fish" books, I really wanted to see them throw fish, but the market was so much more!

There were all sorts of fish sellers! HUGE lobster tails, and crag legs!

The flower sellers were amazing but they were closing up shop for the day and I couldn't get any pictures.

There was a big crowd at this fish stall. This is the one that the books were written about. There wasn't too much throwing of fish going on, but the guys were having fun at their job!

As we were walking around, Nancy spotted this German Deli, and we had to go in. Nancy has some fond memories of when we were in Munich and got some Leberkaese sandwiches for dinner. She has wanted to get some but didn't know what to ask for. I showed her the veal loaf in the case, and now she knows what to ask for. I got some Jaegersauce, which is hard to get, and Nancy bought some Knorr salad dressing. I had to translate the directions for her, but I am sure she will love it!

Nancy needed to have some t-shirts made, and while she was doing that, I sat outside a Starbucks (imagine that, a Starbucks in Seattle!) across from the Pike Place Market and was entertained by these fabulous street musicians! They were amazing!

We walked toward the car and found this little park with some marvelous views of the harbor with the baseball and football/soccer stadiums in the distance.

Right next to the park was a restaurant call Cutters, that advertised a "first seating" dinner. We both had a yummy salad, and salmon, and dessert! This was the view from the restaurant!

After dinner we headed back to the hotel to rest up for the next day's adventures.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Alaska Cruise, Day 7

On Thursday, our last full day of the cruise, we docked in Victoria, British Columbia. Suzie, Norma and I took a taxi downtown. The first thing we did was take a few pictures. Norma was busy snapping away!

The cab dropped us off in front of the Empress Hotel, which is famous for high tea. We really wanted him to take us further to the Needlework shop, but he told us it was just a block away and the traffic was too heavy. He lied, it was a lot further!

This is the view of the Parliament building and the harbor taken from right across the street from the Empress Hotel.
Then we started walking......

....and we finally arrived at Button and Needlework Boutique.

It was a very inviting shop, and we found it easily as one of the husbands was patiently waiting outside.

The shop was small, but we found lots of our cruisers inside, busily shopping!

There were lots of models on the walls.....
...and lots and lots of buttons!

The shop also carried some lovely yarns. Thank goodness I don't knit or I would have spent way too much money!

The shop carried lots of cross stitch, and many local charts. I found the Victoria City Sampler by Jeanette Douglas, a Canadian designer, and knew I had to have it as a souvenir of the trip. Unfortunately, the shop was out of stock and it isn't sold anywhere else, so I ordered it and the fibre pack. The shop will ship it to me once more are printed. If I don't get around to stitching it, I can always frame the chart!

Back aboard the ship, I found a very hungry Sue in our stateroom. She just devoured the fruit tarts I brought her from the buffet! They were yummy!

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Alaska Cruise, Day 6

Day 6 of our cruise was an "at sea" day, and we had two class sessions that day. Fortunately, they were both in the specialty dining room, which had the best light of all the spaces we were given to use.

Everyone was busy stitching, and many stitchers finished one or two of the smalls in the project book. One of the stitchers had almost finished stitching all of the pieces of the project!

Sue showed the participants how to finish the scissors fob with the ladder stitch (or outside join as I learned it from Joni) and I show the biscornu finishing and an alternate finish for the floss ring fob.

More door prizes were drawn, including a "grand door prize" which was a complete set of DMC floss. Congratulations to Linda Fenska for winning all of that lovely floss!

Sue also distributed one more design all kitted up. It was an Alaska bell pull

That evening was the second formal night, and dinner was a real treat! The matre 'ds were all introduced, and the waiters participated in the baked Alaska Parade. This picture shows Johnny, the assistant waiter, and Dalibor, our favorite waiter.

The parading of the baked Alaska is always great fun! They parade up and down the grand staircase, and all around the dining room while all the diners twirl their napkins in the air.
It was yummy, too!

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Alaska Cruise, Day 5

Day 5 of our Alaska cruise found us in Juneau. It was a bit hazy but very warm. This is the harbor.

Here is the view from the ship before we disembarked. There were lots of shops near the harbor, and it was quite busy.

Many of the stitchers found their way to Changing Tides, a lovely stitching and quilting shop.

Although Sue had tried to contact them about our arrival, all the e-mails ended up somewhere in cyber space and they were quite surprised to see so many of us. But the welcome we received was very warm.

The shop had lots of framed models of Alaskan themed counted cross stitch as well as beautiful quilt fabrics and Alaskan gifts.

I fell in love with Jeanette Douglas' Northern Lights Sampler after seeing the stitched model. It will make a wonderful souvenir of the trip. (If I don't get around to stitching it, I will just frame the chart!)

Once back on the ship, a group of stitchers was found diligently stitching on the cruise project. The natural light in the empty nightclub was perfect for stitching.....

.....and for untangling floss.......

Once underway, we cruised through the inside passage. The scenery and views were lovely to look at.

That evening there was a dessert extravaganza buffet in the nightclub. It was very crowded, and the lines were long, but.....

....a plate of yummy pastries made it's way to our stateroom for some midnight snacking.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Alaska Cruise, Day 4

Tuesday was a day at sea, but the afternoon would be spent in Glacier Bay, so we only had class in the morning. It was "Ask the Designer" day, and our cruisers could ask any question of Sue. Many were interested in the designing process and how charts were developed, printed and distributed. In between questions, there were door prizes. Here they are being guarded by Sue's faithful Gnome, who is sleeping on the job.

Our class was in a third location, and although it had windows, the light was not so great. Despite the light level, our stitchers were hard at work, stitching one of the pieces of the cruise design.

The afternoon was spent in Glacier Bay. The ship pulled in slowly and turned slowly, so that everyone got to see the spectacular scenery. Sue and I sat on our balcony sipping hot chocolate and munching on cookies as the naturalist spoke on the loudspeaker and explained what we were seeing.

The beauty and peacefulness was breathtaking. I was amazed at how blue the glacier was, and at the thundering sound as large chunks broke off and fell into the water.

The 2 and 1/2 hours we spent there seemed to go by much too fast.