... so I thought I would show you a piece I stitched and had framed about 10 years ago. I'll be giving this piece to a woman I respect a very great deal, Sister Joan Curtin. Sister Joan is the Director of Catechestics for the Archdiocese of New York and has held that position for 25 years. At the upcoming annual retreat for Certified Directors and Coordinators of Parish Religious Education Programs, we will be celebrating her anniversary. We were all asked to bring something to the celebration that was an example of our personal gifts. Some will be writing songs or testimonials [no doubt, some of those last in the form of "roasts"], others will be working as a group writing and performing skits, others will be sharing favorite stories ... but for me, cross-stitch says it best. And I think this quote from the psalms pretty much describes Sister Joan's life's work. This finish dates from a period when I wasn't too careful to note down the name of the design or where it came from but I am guessing it came from the magazine Celebrations, to which I subscribed many years ago. Excuse the glare please: this is an indoor picture of a piece framed with glass ... I accidentally deleted a better photo ... but I have to get this wrapped up for gift-giving and do not have time to photograph it again.
While the focus of the retreat will be spiritual, I will be bringing a number of cross-stitch projects with me ... to give my hands something to do as I let my mind and spirit regenerate. I am planning on bringing, a few small ornaments along to stitch unobtrusively while listening to lectures and witness talks. And for the down time in the evenings, when we all gather to socialize, I will have Brightneedle's Esmeralda's House. I am also thinking of bringing the Peacock Biscornu along ... maybe in the peaceful setting of the Franciscan monastery at Mt. Alvernia, I'll finally find the patience to frog back to my error and complete the piece.
Picking out this piece for Sister Joan has got me thinking that I really ought to do an inventory and photograph all the other finished and framed pieces that I have stored in a closet against the time I should need a gift for someone quickly. At this point, I am not even sure what I have in storage since all the pieces are wrapped in bubblewrap and brown paper. Though I have pretty much covered my walls with pieces that work with my decor, there are probably a few pieces in storage that I'd like to display. I'll probably have to start taking some of my current stuff down to do so, much the way I do non-framed finishes [stand-ups, easel-backs, pillows, bell-pulls and wall hangings]. Most of the non-frame finishes are seasonal and are rotated intentionally to decorate for the various holidays throughout the year. But, I am guessing, that when I finally unwrap and inventory all the framed pieces [about 20 or so] I am going to find things I had forgotten all about and will want to display or give to someone appropriate. Stay tuned over the next couple of weeks for photographs and descriptions.
I did finish the Pine Cone ornament and will be getting that off in the mail later this week. A photo will be posted when I have gotten word that it was received. And I stitched a quick little Prairie Schooler ornament, an old fashioned Christmas Tree lit with candles. I shall finish this as a padded flat ornament. I also started Elizabeth Needlework Designs' Have a Jolly Halloween but haven't gotten very far on that yet. And I downloaded a lovely Thanksgiving design that says quite simply "Give Thanks" in one of those monochrome designs ... a bit Quakerish looking. It is my hope that I'll have as many Fall/Harvest/Thanksgiving ornaments by Thanksgiving 2010 as I currently have for Halloween and Christmas. That way I will be able to keep my little wrought iron tree up in the entryway from October right through Christmas. Once that is done, I'll work on Valentine's Day, St. Patrick's Day, and Easter ... which will keep the tree on display pretty much year round since I already have a number of patriotic ornaments as well.