I just celebrated one of those big birthdays this week. You know, one of those where you move from one number where you have been for a decade to a new number where you hope and pray to spend another decade. With the help and love of family and friends, my birthday was a wonderful occasion this past week.
My incredibly sweet Andrew and Anna treated me to a surprise stay at the Ponte Vedre Inn and Club at Ponte Vedre Beach, FL last weekend. I didn't find out what was planned until I was about to take the exit off I-295 to their place. Andrew called just in time and re-routed me to Ponte Vedre which is about 15 minutes from Jacksonville. I arrived to find myself already checked in to a fabulous beach front room with this incredible view.
The beach was literally at my doorstep! The weather couldn't have been more perfect. Hot and humid - but what do you expect when at the beach? I hadn't been in my room more than 30 minutes when my next surprise arrived - my brother! Andrew had gathered our small family together to celebrate my birthday weekend.
We had a fabulous meal at Ruth's Chris Friday evening and celebrated again with more friends and family at another surprise dinner on Saturday night. The surprises just continued throughout the weekend! Saturday we drove up the coast to Fernandina Beach so that I could make a stop at The Bristly Thistle.
I enjoyed seeing Michele's great shop as always and her beautifully stitched pieces that are displayed around the shop. I added a couple of canvases to the stash - Mehitabel, one of the Creepy Characters from NeedleDeeva, and one of Kelly Clark's Heritage Series Christmas ornaments. We finished up our trip to Fernandina with a tasty lunch across the street (the name of the restaurant escapes me) where I had a fried green tomato stack (tomatoes, goat cheese, and red pepper jam) and pulled pork spring rolls. Delicious!
My needlepoint companion for the weekend was this cutie pie from Melissa Shirley:
I am using a stitch guide by Carolyn Hedge Baird for the little July 4th girl. Carolyn has written a wonderful stitch guide for each of the children in this series. I believe the series came out a couple of years ago but are still available. I have a companion piece that has a little boy dressed like Uncle Sam holding a flag. I can't wait to stitch her curls and the big blue bow in her hair!
Continuing with the patriotic theme, my July 4th Parade canvas, stitch guide, and threads arrived from Amy's just in time for my birthday. I love it!
I want to put this on the stretcher bars - now! - but won't let myself until I am much further along with the Christmas parade canvas. But this was the incentive I needed to pick up the Christmas parade and get back to work on it.
I spent my Saturday working on Santa's coat. It is stitched in a lovely Bargello pattern. I'll post a better picture next week. Night time lighting leaves a lot to be desired. See that beautiful wooden, handcarved laying tool at the top of the canvas? A very special stitching friend sent that to me for my birthday. I will treasure it for many years to come!
Not only did I receive my July 4th Parade canvas this week but my Melissa Shirley Bloom canvas arrived as well. I bought it specifically as a companion piece to her Whimsy canvas which I purchased earlier this summer from Bestitched. The flowers within the letters are the same as those in the Whimsey canvas. I love the background stripes which are in pink, peach, and cream. Lots of fun to look forward to with these canvases!
And last, but certainly not least, I finished the Sunflower & Berries canvas! I absolutely loved this project. A NeedleDeeva canvas and a Robin King stitch guide make for a perfect piece of needlepoint. Robin's class at In Stitches in Atlanta in April was so much fun. I learned a lot and also got to meet so many of my blog and Facebook friends at the same time. Let's do it again!
So, that was my birthday week. Pretty good, wasn't it? I love my family and friends for making it such a special one!
And now the Olympics are here! Let the marathon Olympic stitching begin! What are you stitching during the Olympics? Can we reach the finish line on some of our projects?