With only one eye on 'the game', I was able to complete the background stitching.
My initial idea was to add texture with machine stitching, but after some test sewing, I decided to use Burmilana #12 for some hand embroidery.
Now that the top is complete...next a wool felt backing will be added and I'll adhere the layers together with more beadwork. I purposely left the edges slightly uneven which I thought was more fitting for this subject.
As you can see, I'm still uncertain about the color and perhaps even the style of beads I'll be using.......let's see what my marathon stitching this even will bring about.