Thursday, February 19, 2009

Belated Valentine's Greetings

I hope you all had a nice Valentine's Day...I piled up on the bed with my 2 favorite guys (and my 2 favorite girls) and we watched tv and stitched. Not unlike every other day here. Anyway, here are some "heart-shaped" finishes...

This is The Trilogy's Secret Crush:

This is a Hob-Nobb Design called Hearts:

And this is a 2006 limited edition kit from JBW Designs called Simply Love...the stitching is to be mounted on the pillow with the buttons shown:
I am stitching a little Blackbird Designs complimentary chart called Lovebird Freebie, and then I think I'm going to get back to some of my WIPS...since I started stitching on my Sense and Sensibility piece a couple of weeks back, it has been on my mind...

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Some Women Are Gluttons For Punishment, Or My Interpretation Of Jane Eyre Accompanied By WIP Photos

I spent 4 hours today watching the BBC mini-series version of Jane Eyre starring Timothy Dalton. And it provoked lots of thought, let me tell you!

First of all, let me say that I was an English major for 2 of my 4 years at college. I started out as a psychology major, but changed it after the first year when I discovered a true love for literature. I had always excelled at English in high school, but this was a whole new world and I was ecstatic. For 2 years I was ecstatic until I realized that unless I did actually manage to marry and live happily ever after, I was likely to wait tables for the rest of my life. So my senior year, which was supposed to be all electives and a real blow-off year, I went back to psychology and finished all the degree requirements in that year. While my career has nothing to do with literature, it is still something I really like.

That being said, I sat down to watch Jane Eyre. I vaguely remembered the storyline...after so many of those period novels, and after the passage of 25 years (has it really been that long?!) things do become a little fuzzy in the mind...

If you are not familiar with the story of Jane Eyre and want to be here is a synopsis...mine that follows is a tad different.

So she goes to Rochester's house to be a governess to his ward and from the very first he is a jerk and talks to her worse than the servants. Somehow, she finds this charming, and despite being ridiculed, yelled at and talked down to, she falls in love with him. I can see how, him being such a prince and all (ahem). While she is living in this house and falling in love, she hears strange laughter from the 2nd floor and is not allowed to go up there. Red flag#1. Then in the night, someone sets fire to Rochester's bed with him in it. Coupled with the strange laughter, this should be a burning (no pun intended) red flag #2. He's evasive and won't answer any questions about it. Then a visitor goes to see someone on that upper floor and ends up torn up from bite marks while there. That is not only #3 but a most definite in out of there. But no. Meanwhile, he is planning to marry some stuck-up witch from down the road and this just breaks her heart. I'd call it good fortune and a pair that deserve each other, but anyway. So after leading her to believe that he is in love with this beast Blanche while she (Jane) is proclaiming her love for him, he proposes to her instead and admits to just trying to make her fall more madly in love with him. Too bad that the burning bed thing didn't work out.

Apparently this is just good courtship, because in spite of the fact that he is not honest about his feelings and toys with hers, and there is maniacal laughter from the upper parts of the house, and he refuses to do anything about the person who tried to set his bed on fire, she is eager to marry him. I would not spend one night in that bed after it was set on fire and the pyromaniac is still lose in the house. But that's just me.

So the happy day arrives, and just in time to prevent the ceremony arrives an attorney to announce that Rochester is already married to someone named Bertha and cannot marry Jane. They all trudge back to the house and go in the upper room where his poor deranged wife is confined (except for when she is burning bedrooms of course) and she turns into a snarling animal at the sight of her husband...which actually may be an argument in favor of her sanity. Jane is so overcome that he flees the house. First sensible thing that she does. And the last.

She is taken in by 3 siblings who turn out to be her cousins who have just discovered that they have lost the inheritance they were expecting to another relative. Guess who the relative is? And because she is such a good person, she divides the inheritance - which was all hers- 4 ways so that they each are rich. Now, I'm all about family, but if I had just been through what she had been through, no way would I part with a cent of that money until I figured my life out. Jane is a good person, just somewhat misguided (or else I am mercenary, you decide).

So these cousins are living in harmony and doing well, and the male has decided to go overseas to be a missionary and wants her to come with his wife. Hopefully they were not actually first cousins. I would not want to see the offspring of that. She is not in love however, and will not marry him.

Now, let's stop and consider a moment. Love has led her to almost make a bigamous marriage to a man who keeps his insane wife locked up in the upper reaches of his house (except of course when she escapes to try to kill him and tears hunks of flesh out of her own brother when he comes to visit) At some point on some of these country walks, she perhaps should have come to realize that her man-picker is broken. This new one has a quarter of her fortune and does not yell and as far as we know, is not married. I'd bet it all on that horse.

But while he is trying to convince her yet again, she gets a good case of the hallucinations and hears her beloved's voice and goes running out into the fields yelling "where are you?". A good answer would be in the nuthouse, but alas, this is not true. So she is inspired to go searching for him, and finds that his manor where he had lived with his wife and his wife-to-be has burned to the ground. Using all the clues we've uncovered so far, who do you think was the arsonist? Yep, Bertha the Batty, playing with fire. However, Rochester did try to run back into the blaze to save Bertha...she ended up running from him and jumping to her death. See how she may not be so insane after all? In the process he has lost his sight and one of his hands. He has moved to some little secluded place with only 2 servants. So she goes there to find him, and takes a tea tray into him in place of the female servant. Once he figures out who she is, he STILL raises his voice to her and talks badly to her.

This would have been it for me. I would have grabbed that tea tray in both hands, swung it and cracked him upside the head and told him he better adjust his tone. She, however, falls to kissing on him and professes her love.

AND SHE MARRIED HIM! After the fates and destinies gave her all those chances to get away!

The moral is that some women are gluttons for punishment.

I had decided to get out one of my (many) WIPs to work on called Sense and Sensibility. It seems to be an especially appropriate thing to stitch.

This I where I started:

And this is where I ended:

I think I'll watch Wuthering Heights next...Cathy and Heathcliff are crazy too if memory serves.

Monday, February 2, 2009

Recent finishes

I have been away from my longer than I realized and certainly longer than I intended, but I do have something to show for it!

This is a Bent Creek special edition kit called Wish Upon A Flake. I have had it for years and years. It will have a stick attached with ribbon loops and buttons to the little tuck banner when it is finished. I also have not ironed and trimmed the fabric so that's why it looks so "puffy"!

This is Let It Snow from the JCS 2008 Ornament issue. Mine will probably get finished as a little decorative pillow instead of as an ornament.

This is an old Heart In Hand kit called Valentine's Day Roundabout. My patience was sorely tried doing those stupid satin stitches last night. Obviously it is fresh off of the hoop. Just so you know, I do iron my stuff...eventually.

My Blog Is Fabulous!

I received this honor from Cathey:

I am supposed to award it to another 5 people who have fabulous blogs and then tell 5 things I am addicted to. So...

I am addicted to:
  1. My dogs...they are my children and my family. I am an only child who has lost both parents and although I do have some aunts, uncles, and cousins, only 1 elderly aunt lives in the same area. I had a beagle for 17 yrs when I was growing up who was my best friend, so I guess I have always looked to dogs for companionship and comfort.
  2. Books...again as an only child I fell in love with reading early on. I knew hw to read some when I started the first grade and was bored to death while the teacher put up these big posters for the group to read. There was a picture of a boy that said "Mike" and then 2 kids that said "Mike and Jeff" and then 3 kids that said "Mary, Mike, and Jeff" and we were supposed to remember what word was what. I looked at them and said who it was and was ready to move on to another poster, and everyone else was still struggling over Mike and Jeff. I have always loved to read, and my passion is historical fiction. Some historical romance, but mainly just historical fiction. Wonderful examples are Sharon Kay Penman and Diana Gabaldon. I'm still trying to get back to my Eleanor of Aquatine series by SKP.
  3. Historical drama movies...I love "period pieces". I recently watched Braveheart for the first time and thought it was one of the best movies I have ever seen. I've been having a festival of movies and stitching lately.
  4. My computer...I spend WAY too much time on here. I am either reading the message board at 123Stitch, playing games (especially at or as my friend David puts it "reading the internet".
  5. And last but far from stitching of course. Since I have not been working for the past year, I have gotten back in the habit of lots of stitching. Hopefully this will continue once I do go back to work. In the past, I have had a very comfortable routine of working all day, and then coming home and settling in to stitch all evening. My idea of the perfect life!

And then the award goes to....

There are a couple of more that I think are great blogs but those people have already been awarded so I tried to find people who had not.

Thanks for the compliment Cathey!