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Category Archives: Presents

Julie and Ian Dollery, some of my closest friends who for some reason seem happy to feed me two, three or more times a week.  I’m not sure it’s because I fulfil the role of ladies companion for Julie, making her tea while she works from home, or keeping her company on lunches out at swanky restaurants (it’s such a hard life some weeks!) or whether because I provide an excuse for Ian to make dessert, discuss outrageous political theories and watch animated movies with 🙂

All I know is these two have fast become two of my best friends! And this year, in a few weeks, they are taking me on a one-week all-expenses-paid trip to Phuket in Thailand!

Yep – an all expenses paid overseas holiday. I’ve never left Australia so this will be an exciting time. Also I’m feeling quite nervous about being well enough for the Dollery’s to get their monies worth ( Julie has informed me that I’m being quite silly).

This is the resort we will be staying at:  Mandarava Resort and Spa Karon Beach

Overview of Mandarava Resort

Overview of Mandarava Resort

They have massage facilities .....

They have massage facilities …..

Also I have been promised tigers!

Kay Jones is my internet mum 🙂 She’s on social media, cross stitch groups and has known me for years.  She’s never afraid to tell me to pull my head in when I’m being a doofus 🙂 🙂

As she knows I’m on a stash diet this year, Kay has bought me access to the Alessandra Adelaide Christmas Mystery Stitchalong (SAL) for my birthday.

The design is a Mystery ....

As it is a Mystery – here is the design teaser ….

Kay bought me option 2 for the mystery, which includes the chart, five ceramic ornaments, 1 ceramic button and four jingle bells.  All of the buttons and what not will be hand-crafted by Alessandra herself!

I am sooo excited! Thank you Kay mum!  Expect to see pictures here as I do floss tosses and choose fabric 🙂


There is a popular meme going around that says something to effect of “Good friends are those you may not talk to all the time, but when you do it’s like you spoke yesterday” or you know, something of that nature.

Debbie Lord is one of those friends. We don’t chat often, but when we do the phone calls last for hours 🙂  Many many thanks for my birthday presents Debbie!  Cross stitch charts of course 🙂 🙂 🙂

Ciro Marchetti – Heaven and Earth Designs

Armada - Ciro Marchetti

Armada – Ciro Marchetti


Bubble Telescope - Ciro Marchetti

Bubble Telescope – Ciro Marchetti


Randal Spangler – Heaven and Earth Designs

Computer Catastrophes - Randal Spangler

Computer Catastrophes – Randal Spangler


Oooooh my!! Today is THE DAY!! I have also received a lovely package from Kay Jones!! I presume some of these gorgeous bits were collected on her recent holiday! TWO pairs of gorgeous earrings – I don’t mine which pair to wear first!!! A beautiful bookmark and a key ring big enough and shiny enough that I’ll stop losing my house keys!! Thank you thank you thank you Kay for thinking of me!!

PS the chocolate was yummy.




Over on the Stitching Hangout we are about to start a Chocolate Swap.  Yes other groups have talked about this on and off for a few months now, but we are DOING IT!

So, for our first exchange the theme will be ….. CHOCOLATE. You can send to your designated partner chocolate bars, chocolate boxes. Some people unfortunately do not or cannot eat it so the exchange will also include chocolate themed stitching items. Charts, threads, fabrics etc. If you don’t stitch then chocolate cookery recipes, or items. Chocolate to drink. If none of this is suitable then how about chocolate wool for those who knit or chocolate coloured fabric for the quilters. Its just a case of using your imagination and we all know that you all have loads of that 🙂 :).

Postage for such an exchange can quickly escalate, especially if you elect to send internationally.  We request that you keep your package around one pound or under 500gm in weight. For those feeling more expansive the maximum weight is 2lbs.

We’ve set up a database but please be VERY EXPLICIT in your likes and dislikes.  The more you put down, the better your partner can pick something you really like. Sign ups will be until the middle of June and I’ll send out partners around the end of the month.

Anyone can join in. The more the merrier.

Here’s the link to put your name down if you are interested in joining this exchange 🙂


Chocolate coloured Wool

Snail mail ....

What with Easter and the flu and Tiger, April was pretty much of a blur for me. I managed to get the Project-a-Day posts written each day, but I haven’t kept up with reading and replying to all of the comments and I’m sorry for that. I plan to do a little blog tidy up and catch up each day this month.

To start, I’m off to the Post Office this afternoon with:

  • Dad’s Birthday present
  • Ocean’s Daughter to Deb
  • Jenny’s birthday present from the old Stitch Specialists’ Birthday group
  • DVDs to Stephen

. I’ve also just sent out emails asking for postal addresses to send off:

Also just a reminder that the following charts are still available free to a good home if people are interested. I usually only send one per person:

Now what else have I promised to send to people who I haven’t yet done so?  Please don’t be shy to remind me.  I know I have memory issues and need reminding if things fall through the cracks or fall off my To Do lists.  And these Lists have fallen apart!

Thank you soo much Tim!

This arrived in the mail on Friday.  It’s a stitchable iPad cover.

iPad Stitch Kit from Tim

I haven’t opened the packet yet, but it looks like you use the blue and brown floss to stitch a motif in the perforated area, and then the beige string to tie the two sides of the cover/pouch/sleeve together.  According to the back of the pack, there are 30 motif designs included and at least one is a cat 🙂

Well I have my weekend project organised – now just to select a motif pattern …. hmmm that may take weeks …  maybe I’ll need to put up a poll ….

Thank you Tim !!!!  I’ve not seen one of these before. It is sooo cute and perfect!

I received some crap news from the specialist yesterday, and on of my best friends had a really bad morning this morning so on the whole “Fuck you Universe – you can’t treat people like that and get away with it!” I’ve spent quite a few hours Christmas shopping.

Unfortunately my time organisation skills like most other brain skills are pretty much crap these days, dear friends so please listen closely:

Some of you will receive packages in the mail from shops you don’t remember ordering from in the next couple of days.  Do not open them – these will be Christmas presents.

Some of you will be receiving packages between Christmas and New Years.  Never fear, I haven’t forgotten you – it’s just that your fantastic gift actually requires a lead-in time to create or a bigger sacrifice to the International Mail Gods than I was prepared to make.  I’m happy to sacrifice babies but I can’t afford International Global Express.

Some of you will receive little electronic emails and such on Christmas Day or just before (for I am also crap with International time zones).

Finally if you are a regular commenter on my blog and/or my friend and none of the above happens to you, then the International Mail Gods hate you, or me.  Or I couldn’t figure out what to send you – do you know that half of you do NOT have wishlists.  Wishlists people!!!!  How can I send the right gifts without a wishlist!!!! Your homework before 1 January 2012 is to create or update your wishlist and remind me of your birthday!  Each one of you! I have a spreadsheet now and I want it updated!

Now before I get a flurry of “Oh my God Mel – don’t be so fiscally irresponsible”:

1. The money is spent. I do believe in recycling, regifting, bargain hunting and buying local so there wasn’t that much hard cash spent really.

2. I want to do something nice to all of my friends who have been here supporting me through all my of whining and crappiness this year and I just don’t have the “spoons” to it any other way

3. I’m an adult, I can take the consequences of my actions and I choose to say “Fuck you Universe” in any damn way I want.

I just hope you guys like your pressies 🙂


Well Skeleton Crew is still providing headaches.  I’m working on the middle mast and everything is lining up! YAY!  That’s not the problem. Everything is where it should be.

The problem is that my stitches don’t look anywhere near as plump as everyone elses.  I’ve tried loosening my tension but that just looks horrid. Glow in the Dark thread does not forgive loose stitching, it has a spring in it like metallic thread does.

I think it’s related to the fact that I stitch backwards to everyone else so I’ve been stitching 90 degrees so my stitches go the same way.  When you turn the piece sideways my stitches do look as plump, but not when you look straight on.  I’m perplexed.

So I’ve left it alone for a day or two to think about it.

Skeleton Crew Cross-Eyed Cricket

Skeleton Crew Middle Mast

In other news I’ve moved across another two months of old 2006 posts so we have June and July 2006 now.  I do apologise to those who receive this blog on email subscription, I do not know how to turn off the email notifications for the older posts 🙁 Any suggestions from more experienced WordPress users?

I’ve also uploaded a few WIP galleries for pieces I was working on in the first half of 2006 an I’ve started moving across some of the my finished pieces photos.  That gallery will be a work in progress itself for a while to come 🙂

Anyway feel free to have a look through the old posts or the galleries at any time.  The galleries are listed on the top right hand side of the widget area.

Only other area of stitching interest is that I’ve uploaded some photos into the appropriate Google plus area for one of the sneaky Christmas presents I’m working on.  Mum and I did some floss tosses yesterday and these are available for anyone in that circle to comment on.

Now back to figuring out figuring out what to do with Skeleton Crew … maybe I’ll go and bake a loaf of bread.

I’m stitching some Christmas gifts this year. As some of the recipients read this blog, all conversation regarding these presents will be via circles on Google Plus. A different circle per project.

Comment here if you want a Google Plus invite or contact me  if you want to be in the relevant circles. Planning, conniving, secret sharing and fabric selection starts next weekend.

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