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Wednesday, December 31, 2008

It's New Years Eve

Wow, December 31st! Can you believe it? Where did the year go and what is in store for the new year? I think many of us will be stepping into 2009 with a bit of trepidation. Maybe fear. I know that I will be going into 2009 hopeful. Hopeful that the economy turns around and that everyone from the executive levels to the lowly hourly workers learn from our economic mistakes and the year becomes prosperous for business. Hopeful that a change in administration will actually change things in the US. I know that change will not come overnight but hey, even if the course is set, it's better than nothing. Hopeful that people will keep their houses and jobs. Hopeful that the US pulls out of Iraq and Afghanistan (I have a vested interest in this hope!).

I like to think that the New Year is filled with possibilities. That opportunities are endless and all I have to do is change my attitude about my circumstances. Because I am very blessed and have a tendency to think of the worst, my biggest opportunity will be taking an attitude of GRATITUDE. Grateful that I have enough and that enough is plenty. Thankful for what I have, a loving family, a husband I adore, a boy who has grown into a fine young man, a daughter in law (to be) that I feel is my daughter. Her family who shares the same values that the David and I do, love of God, family, honesty, hard working.
A home, even if it's not out of Architectual Digest, is filled with love, laughter and peace. There is oil in the fuel tank and food in my fridge. My job! A job that is very hard at times, a boss who is my coach, mentor and friend, who challenges me constantly to grow and change. Answered prayers. Horses. Friends. Cyberbuddies (Hi you guys!). My brother and his family. My love of Jesus. See, the blessings just goes on and on.

I read something recently, that I am going to challenge everyone who visits Joanie's World to consider doing this year. I'll be doing it and I hope you will join me. I am going to take a minute each morning and write down 3 things that for which I am thankful. It doesn't have to be big things. I can be thankful for the sun streaming into the bedroom. Birds singing. Olivia snoring next to my head. Anything. It will be a great start for the day. Join me. Focus on the good things, not the bad things.

As far as stitching, I only have 6 goals this year. They are my commitments for the year.
  • Finish Beatrix Potter (in the SAL, so that should happen)
  • Stitch the Cadet and Lovely Jenna's wedding sampler
  • Stitch True Virtue (we'll get there, Connie!)
  • Participate in the Prairie Schooler Exchange
  • Have fun! and not worry about my Wips, starts or stash
  • Stitch from my stash and limit purchases to patterns to those that I know I will stitch and not buy just because I want it.
I do have personal goals for 2009, some private and some not so private. I am sure that you can guess them...lose weight, save more, be a great listener and friend.

Anyway, here's to the New Year! A year filled with promise, expectation and opportunities!


Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Some News

Christmas at Chez Kitty was awesome! The Cadet was home and the house met his high standards for Christmas decorations...WHEW! He brought home Ella Kitty,who is visiting us for a little while. We've got 3 house cats now and the fun never stops. Olivia and Ella do the Kitty 500 around the house and for the first time in forever, SweetieGirl, plays along. When the weather is cold, Screamer, the barn cat, comes in too but she stays in the sunroom, snoozing mainly. She's the Queen of all and she will not lower herself to running around the house like the other 3.

Santa was good to The Cadet, much better than he anticipated, because the Elves (that's us) were on a very tight budget this year. But, true to form, the head elf (that's me!) HELL with it, I'll deal in January. Plus, the second elf (the DH) did return to his regular job part time during his student teaching stint so the purse strings loosened just a bit. The Cadet got his wishes and then some.

I got a few calendars (one for the house and one for the office), some socks, a very cute snowman votive holder, a gift card to Christopher and Banks, an amarylis bulb and an amarylis garden and a Josh Groban Christmas CD. I didn't get (nor did I ask for) any stitching gifts. I've been bad with ordering stash lately so that was my gift to myself. I'll gather up the goodies and take a picture to share my haul with you.

The DH got clothes, his closet needed an infusion of new things, most of his stuff is getting a bit threadbare. So it was shirts, ties, and dress pants. And jeans. Oh, and a desk chair. I've been threatening him with moving him into the 4th bedroom because he's overtaken my kitchen table and now, we are actually 2 steps closer to getting him set up into a proper office.

Oh, lest I forget, we got a new DVD/VCR player too, a cheap one cause we obviously are appliance/electronic challenged in this house. None of our appliances or electronics last more than 2 years. I think I am on my 35th can opener and 20th coffee maker. The DVD player had my name on it but really, we all know who it was for...

On the stitching front, well, I've stitched a little bit but not as much as I'd hoped. Actually, this vacation has been rather, umm, lazy. I've spent more than my share of time on this machine. I think as a New Year resolution, I'm going to limit the amount of time I can spend on it. I get caught up in reading blogs, I think I have over 50 on my feed list and I very diligently read everyone that's updated. A great time, I may cut back and read some one day and the rest another. Oh, we'll see how that plays out.

I did work on True Virtue a little bit. I'm working on the alphabets. I've stitched the upper case alphabet and a portion of the lower case one. I put in 4 numbers but I'm going to take them out cause I want to change the color. And I put in a couple more rice stitched motifs in the border. I thought that I'd stitch more but we've been busy, more than I've expected.

Jenna came here on the 26th to spend the day with us. It was much too short, we celebrated the DH's birthday (it's the 29th) at Red Lobster, made a trip to Barnes & Nobles and went home to have a piece of frozen Boston Creme pie. Long story. The Cadet's Best Friend, Charlie, was here too so it was ALL good for me!

Well, I will go for now... I'm leaving you a picture of the Cadet and the Lovely Jenna...

Thanks for stopping by and I'll get pictures up on the next post.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to everyone who stops by to see what's happening in Joanie's World.

Friday, December 26, 2008

Christmas Meme

Pinched from Liv N to play along?

Candy cane or peppermint patties? Candy canes.
Sugar or gingerbread cookies? Sugar cookies. Love the smell of them baking. Mom would make dozens of them and we got to put the sprinkles on them.
Tinsel or beaded strands? Neither, I have this fluffy garland stuff made out of tinsel.
Multi-colored or same-colored lights? Multi colored. The Cadet insists.
Wreaths or mistletoe/holly? Wreaths, fresh pine wreaths, please.
Rudolph or Frosty? Frosty! Snowmen. Love those frosty fellows!
Sledding or snowball fights? Sledding- growing up we went sledding at the Pumphouse (it was the place where the town would pump water from the Ohio river, clean it up and that's what came out of the kitchen tap. Anyway...there were terraced hills. It was a great bumpy ride with a 2 foot drop onto the Pump house driveway where you could sled to the river.
Snow or ice/icicles? Snow!
Snow hat or earmuffs? Snow hat even though I feel dorky wearing it.
Getting or giving? Giving…but getting is always fun.
Snow days or plow trucks? SNOW DAYS!!! But sadly, I can flex so when the roads clear, I'm off to work, late.
Stockings or presents? Stockings. Like Sue's Mom, my Mom always put fun stuff in our stockings…trinkets and nuts and an orange in the toe. The best presents were art ones for me. I always got a box of crayola crayons (the new crayon smell brings me right back to Christmas) and a coloring book. Then there was the year I got a watercolor paint set. Oh geez, I was in heaven.
Cookies & milk or letter to Santa? Cookies and Milk.
Christmas Eve or Christmas Day? Christmas Eve. It's a magical night for me. When I got to be a teenager, my Mom and Aunts would take me to Midnight Mass. We'd walk the 5 blocks to church no matter what the weather...they didn't know how to drive! But I don't ever remember being cold. It was magical, walking the neighborhood looking at the house decorations and trees in the windows of the houses we passed.
Log Burning Channel or real thing? Is there any question? REAL!!!
Cards or e-mails? Cards… it's like sending a small gift in the mail.
Shoveling or cleaning off the car? Shoveling. Great work out. Besides I hate cleaning off the Explorer. It's big and I'm not. I need a ladder to clean the windshield.

Feel free to play along...nice Christmas/Winter memories...thanks Sue!

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Merry Christmas!

Wishing you all a very Merry Christmas from our house to yours!

Thank you so much for your friendship and your inspiration. My hope is that you find peace, love and joy celebrating the birth or our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

True Virtues - Progress

Connie and I are SALing together. We are working on True Virtues, a Janie Applebaum sampler found in the April 1997 issue of JCS. We were going to wait until Christmas Day to officially start but neither one of us could do that. So we started early.
This is my progress so far:

The color is a little truer than in the first photo:

I am stitching it on Antique Ivory Edinborough linen (36ct) with one strand of DMC.
I have to confess, I had some of the green zig-zag border stitched before this picture was taken. My most recent work has been the alphabet and the leaves in the border. I am working my way done the left side cause I want to stitch the house.
You can see Connie's progress on her blog, Wandering This World. Her pictures are better than mine!
I want to thank Connie for agreeing to SAL with me. It's so nice to stitch with someone!

Monday, December 22, 2008

Ok, I'm Ready - Hurry up Christmas!

Today I finished up my shopping, just last minute things. My flowers for the in-laws are ordered. Groceries are in the pantry. The tree is up and decorated along with the mantel, the kitchen window and kitchen shelf. Tomorrow, I will spend the entire day wrapping all the gifts, picking up the clutter and cleaning up the house. That will take awhile because the house is not in good shape right now.

The Cadet will be home tomorrow night for a few days.

And for a change, I'm really looking forward to Christmas.

I am ready...

Sunday, December 21, 2008

What wonderful Customer Service!

In yesterday's post, I wrote about a pattern that I downloaded from PatternMart. I got a lovely email from Kelle, the owner. She writes:

I'm the owner of Pattern Mart. If you email me with the name of the pattern you had some trouble with I'll check it and see if it's something with that PDF. Most of the designers that are members on Pattern Mart do their own PDF's, so it could be that a setting was off when the designer created it. In any case, we are always happy to help if you are having problems with a pattern. They should print out nice and clear. Kelle

What a lovely email and such great Customer Service!

I know that I will be purchasing more patterns from her because a) the owner personally cares about her product and her customers and b) I can get them immediately!

Kelle, thank you so much! I certainly recommend PatternMart!

Saturday, December 20, 2008

It's been a couple of busy days here

Well, it's been a couple of busy days here at our house. I've been on vacation so they say, but if you ask me the last 3 days has been anything but leisure. Is it just me, or do you tend to spend your vacation, if you stay home, to play catch up with all the things you said you'd do once you got a scrap of time? That's what this past week has been. Playing catch up to get ready for Christmas.
I put up the tree on Friday. Olivia helped.

It took all afternoon, but that's ok cause I actually enjoyed it for a change and it looks spectacular. The Cadet though will think it's just OK, we used to go out and cut one down at the local tree farm and honestly, we've come home with 12 - 15 foot trees. The tree would be so big, it would take up the entire width of the living room and hit the ceiling fan way at the top of the cathedral ceiling. It's funny about the Cadet, he's been reminiscing about Christmas' past and the things he told me just took me by surprise. Honestly, he never said anything mattered to him at the time but now, he tells me that he loved it when I decorated all the windows in swags of garland, how festive it was, and how he loved going out and cutting down BIG trees and that he wanted me to make sugar cookies for him cause he remembered how we decorated them together one year (he was 5!). I never thought any of my efforts meant anything to him. Geez. Who knew?!

Today, I spent some time housecleaning, the family room got a good scrub and I did some laundry. I made 9 dozen cookies for a cookie exchange tomorrow, I hope it doesn't snow. We will be eating peanut butter blossoms for a LONG time if the party gets cancelled. The weather guy is predicting 3-6" in the afternoon. If that happens, then I will be staying put.

I stitched a little tonight, nothing to note really, it was quite a chore. I don't know if I am tired or just too wired on caffeine. I got tired of fighting off Olivia too. She is in one of her "moods" where everything she lays eyes on must be "killed". So far, she made off with my scissor fob (with scissors attached), a bobbin of DMC and a skein too. This morning, Olivia decided to go after my oatmeal while I was on the computer. She jumped onto the desk, jumped over the keyboard and slid right into my mug of coffee. The coffee cup went flying, she went flying off the desk taking the cable modem with her. The coffee was spattered all over the wall and onto the computer tower and wireless router. 12 oz of Irish Creme coffee with milk on ELECTRONICS. Do you know that liquids and electronics do not play well together? Fortunately, all that happened was the internet went out cause she pulled the cable out of the cable modem when she went flying and took it with her. Oh, I held my breath though, all I could think of was that the computer was fried. Not a good thing! But all is well and it took a while to clean up the mess from the wall, the hardwood floor and the computer stuff. She's a holy terror right now.

She is kidding, right? Do you think I am a "Holy Terror"??

I downloaded a pattern from The Sampler Girl (It's a Wonderful Life) from PatternMart and the download is fuzzy. Actually, I am a little disappointed in the quality of the PDF. I imagine they scan the pattern and convert it to PDF. I am having trouble reading some of the symbols. Has anyone else encountered blurry patterns from PatternMart when you do an instant download? Last night, I worked a little on True Virtue (Connie and I are SALing - hey girlfriend!) and I started a Prairie Schooler Santa ornament from Santa and Snowmen.
I am hoping that tomorrow I'll be able to take a few pictures of my tree and some of my stitching to share with you. I've been visiting blogs and I've gotten to see some really great Christmas decorating. I hope you are having a great weekend and are just about ready for Christmas!
Oh, and one more thing...can one of you computer savy bloggers come to my rescue and tell me how to fix my banner? I'd like to move the picture and enlarge and change the color and the font of my header. Thanks for your help!

Saturday, December 13, 2008

What's been occupying my time

First of all, here's a picture of Olivia after she terrorized SweetieGirl, attacked my stitching and played with a chunk of wood for most of this morning. She jumped into the office chair about 5 minutes ago and promptly turned "OFF".

I joined a group, Seasonal Ornament SAL, that's stitching ornaments throughout the year. Vonna started it and the first ornament was to be for Thanksgiving. Ok, so Thanksgiving was LAST month...sue me. I chose the cornucopia from Prairie Schooler's, Autumn Samplers, and personalized it. I stitched it over one on 28 count Lambswool Lugana. It's tiny.

Lately, I've noticed that I am grousing more and more on what I don't have instead of being grateful for what I do. I am doing my best to be grateful for what I have and not to worry about what I don't. It's very hard for me cause deep down, I am a MATERIAL Girl. No, I am not Madonna, but I do like expensive things. Over the years, I've toned down shopping almost to the point of hating it. But when I do shop, I have a tendency to blow through a lot of cash in a short amount of time. This will be made into a pillow ornament and put where I can see it. ALL THE TIME.

Progress on Beatrix Potter.

I got back into her and I know I shouldn't work on her until the first of the year when the SAL officially begins but working with silk is a guilty pleasure. Bea is the only sampler I have in the Wip pile that's in silk now so when I need my silk fix, I go to her. Plus finishing motifs is like instant gratification. I am almost 1/2 done with her. Her sister is waiting in the wings to be started after I finish her.

Last is Blessings and Kind Wishes.

I hate the thread. And no, I will not get it finished for Christmas cause I hate the thread. I force myself to work on it. And right now, in the frame of mind I am in, forcing myself to work on a sampler that I am not enjoying is, well, just stupid. I will guilt myself into working on it (probably in small doses) so it will get done.

I apologize for the quality of the pictures and the wrinkly fabric. I just couldn't bring myself to dig out the iron and set up the ironing board.

So, there. I've been stitching. Next week, I start my glorious 2.5 week vacation. After Wednesday, I will be off until January 5th! YIPPIE!!! So I will be doing a lot of stitching and I will be working on some Christmas gifties. And finishing decorating and starting to bake. I am so looking forward to this time off.

I'll be more active on the ol' blog too so come back again. Thank you all for coming by! I AM grateful for all of you!

Saturday, December 06, 2008

Oh for Pete's Sake

I just want to change the template on my blog. I want a winter / Christmas theme. I went to the site that I downloaded my current template and Ifound a lovely design. I followed the directions and uploaded it. But Blogger gives me a weird error code. So I decide to go to another site and download a new template. The template loads behind the current one. I am pretty frustrated. It shouldn't be so difficult to change a *8&##@*#***! template. As it is, I have to my cut and paste all my blog links back into gadget page.

I'll have stitchy photos for you tomorrow. I am not in the mood to attempt to upload photographs. I've worked on BBD's Blessings and Kind Wishes and Where My Heart Blooms. And a couple of ornaments that look like blobs. Not too much progress on those.

Oh, I've tried to stitch but my kitten will not allow me to do much needlework. She is a lap cat and when I try to stitch, she grabs the linen with her teeth and her paws (claws extended). I am afraid she's going to put a hole in my work. And, she will hook the thread with her paws too. I think I stitched a grand total of an hour between Friday and Saturday. Usually, I stitch an average of 10+ hours.

And we named her....Olivia. Her name just came to me and it fits.

Friday, November 28, 2008

Prairie Schooler - Can you help me??

Hi everyone!

I hope you had a great Thanksgiving Day with family and friends and you "gobbled till you wobbled"! I did!
We had a great time with the lovely Jenna and her family. And seeing the Cadet too! It was very fun talking with her sister and grandparents. The food was wonderful and it was a grand time.

Well, I need some help from you, friends. I am desperately seeking out these OOP Prairie Schoolers:

I can trade or purchase from you. Or if you'd be willing to lend the patterns to me (I promise to take really good care of the patterns) that would be fine too. I have OOP Mary Gary and Good Huswife and other OOP patterns too. We can work something out.

If you are willing and interested, please leave a comment and I'll get in touch with you. I really, really appreciate it!

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving!!!

Amid all the morning preparations to drive to the lovely Jenna's parents home for the feast, I couldn't pass up the opportunity to say Happy Thanksgiving to all my American internet buddies. I wish you a day filled with family and friends, love, laughter, good times and great food. And to my international friends, I want you to know that I am especially blessed by your kindness, generosity and friendship through the internet. And everyone, please spend time with your needles today!!! LOL!

I have much to be thankful for, a great husband, who loves me in spite of all my shortcomings and flaws, and a wonderful son and soon to be daughter. A home filled with light and love, a GREAT job (even though I complain about it a lot) and a country that I love. And a God who has provided wonderful gifts far beyond my wildest imagination. To Him I give all the glory and my heart swells with thanksgiving.

I am grateful.

I am blessed.

Have a wonderful day, everyone!

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

A Message from SweetieGirl (aka Miss Sourpuss)

Tap, tap...Is anyone on??

This is a message from Sweetie Girl.

Two nights ago, there was a disturbance in the force. An intruder entered into my domain. My people are smitten by her. I however am highly disturbed by the intruder. She must go.

This morning when I came into the kitchen for my morning treat, I found the big yellow fuzzyball (the wonderdog) and the little intruder snacking on turkey. When I was served my piece of turkey, the little twit actually STOLE it out from underneath my nose. SHE DOVE ON IT AND WOULDN'T LET ME HAVE IT. Well, I started swatting her HARD on her thick head but all she did was hunker down and GROWL at me. The brazen hussy. Well, being the lady that I am, I let her have the scrap but I did let her know that I was highly peeved at her antics. I retreated to the back of the sofa where my Mom let me eat my turkey out of her hand.

I am pretty annoyed.

Later on during the day, the little twit had the audacity, the nerve, to fall asleep in front of the wood stove. The Wonderdog knows that only I am allowed to nap in front of the fireplace and if she wants to have some of the heat, she has to stay at least 3 feet from me. I am going to have to put that kitten in her place. Doesn't she know that she's napping in MY space???

I know that Mom wants you to help name her. I have a name for you all to consider.


Sweetie Girl
A little pissed off

That's all for now.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

We have a new acquisition...

We got a gift last night: This cute little bundle of fur came to live with us last night. Our friend, Mark, discovered her while walking one of the gas lines about an hour from here. Mark works for the gas company and while he was out checking the line, he heard this plaintive sound. When he went looking for whatever was making this noise, he discovered this little kitten. She was a drop off, left to die on a country road. And Mark, kind soul, couldn't leave her to fend for herself on a road where the houses were few and far between. She never would have made the night, either she would have died on the road or from exposure. We got 6 inches of snow last night and the remote area Mark was working at was forecast for 8-12".

Mark packed her up in his truck and brought her home. When he got home, his wife Karen, called and asked if we knew of anyone who wanted a kitten. My DH said to bring her over. She's coming to live with us. (He's such a softie.)

Sweetie girl isn't too thrilled, she hisses and swats at her and Chrissy the Wonderdog isn't phased by her. Right now all she wants is to be held. And she is very vocal. Right now she is perched on my shoulder. If I put her down, she cries and climbs back on.

She looks to be about 8-10 weeks old. She is weaned. We haven't named her. I am at a loss. She doesn't look like a Cloe or an Abigail or a Sophie. I'd like a pretty name but her personality is all tomcat. She's not afraid of anything. Last night she tried to climb into the woodstove when Dave was putting logs on the fire. I don't think she's litter trained because I found a present in the back of the closet in the bedroom we are turning into an office. She's got to learn to use the box, otherwise, she will be a barn cat before she knows it. If anyone knows how to box train a cat, please let me know!

She's the sweetest thing and I am happy we've taken her in. I always believed that strays find the homes that God wants them to have and the folks that take them in and give them love are richly blessed.

Welcome home, little kitty!

Oh, if you come up with a name, please post it.

Monday, November 24, 2008

Broken teacups and friendships

Today, I ventured out for awhile to the mall to return some drapery rods that I bought at JCPenneys. While I was there waiting to be waited on, I turned and saw a lady that used to be my best friend looking at the shoes.

This lady was my closest friend for 25 years until 5 years ago when a silly misunderstanding and jealousy stepped in between us. Harsh words, silence, and then our friendship was broken. I don't remember what came between us, I know that during the that time we didn't spend much time together like we did when our kids were growing up. I think that we both neglected our relationship and I in particular, because I thought that no matter what time or distance was between us, she would always be there, even if I didn't make time for her or our friendship. But one day in July, she decided she had enough. And we no longer spoke to each other. I hurt her deeply, to the core, and even though I tried to reach out to her by email and snail mail and by phone, to make things right, to apologize, to explain, she has not responded to me.

And I miss her. Terribly.

Our boys are grown. And she was not there when the Cadet graduated from high school, when my Dad died, when things went south with our house. She didn't share the Cadet's engagement with me and she will not be there to celebrate his marriage. I was not there for her when her in-laws moved here from California or to help her with her aging Mom. I don't know what else in her life I wasn't part of.

It makes me sad.

I am ashamed to say that because I was so wrapped up in ME that I neglected a very important thing. A thing that I will never get back.

Today, while in Penneys, I wanted to go up to her. I wanted to look her in the eyes and tell her how sorry I am and ask her for forgiveness and the chance to begin our friendship again. But I didn't.


I was afraid. Afraid of what she would say to me, how she would react to me, if she would be rude (not that I wouldn't have deserved it) and tell me to leave her alone. But what if she would have reacted differently? Made small talk. Accepted an invitation to meet over coffee?

I'll never know.

So I stood there and watched her shop for shoes and then leave the store.

And my broken friendship and my broken heart is like this broken teacup. Unmendable.

Friendships are fragile...I should know, I broke mine.

Blessings & Kind Wishes - Progress

Good Monday! I am on vacation, YAY, this week so I thought I'd post a progress picture of Blessings and Kind Wishes. I was a good stitcher on Sunday and worked on it during football and in the evening.

Here's my progress:

You would think that I would be further along after approximately 5+ hours of stitching. But No--o-o-o! I am the world's slowest stitcher. Oh well, steady wins the race, right?

I know I've been crabbing about the WDW thread, it seems to be only the greens (and this whole pattern is green) that are thin and crispy (sounds like a pizza!). The GAST thread is nice to use, they are behaving properly too. The blue diamond shapes are stitched with Cresent Colors and oh my! they are really nice to use! They are smooth and they behave wonderfully. I railroad and the threads don't need much coaching to lay beside each other. I can't wait to use them again (on Strawberry Garden (snicker)). And no, I haven't started it yet. I am waiting until I get more done on Blessings cause if I begin Strawberry Garden, Blessings will fall into the black pit of misfit stitching projects never to see the light of day until I feel guilty and drag it back out into the light of day.

Well, I've procrastinated enough. I promised my house that I would do some heavy cleaning and possibly some painting while I was home. So far, all that has been is promises. I am unmotivated by housework and if I don't get busy, I'll be kicking myself into next week for putting it off. The house certainly needs some TLC. There is a reward at the guessed it, my needle and stitching.

So ciao, friends, it's off to find the broom, bucket and mop. Sigh.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Pictures as promised

Thanks to all of you who've left me comments on my insomnia. Yes, I did go to sleep around 2AM and I slept until 6:45 when I woke up with a start thinking that someone was calling from the sunroom. The DH was up already, taking care of the critters and I thought it was him. But I was dreaming. So I got up and started the day. Tired.

Are you afflicted with the disease known as "Your eyes are bigger than (fill in the blank)"? I know I am! This morning while perusing the blogs as I drank my cuppa joe and ate my cereal, I came across this beautiful picture on Aline's blog.

And now, it's on my very short list of things to stitch. You have no idea how close I am to starting this. I must have bought it when this piece first came out and I stashed it away. I do know that I was a bit put off about all the lazy daisy stitches (not a big fan of that particular stitch) when I first got the pattern but now I'd just tough them out if I started this piece. I have the required Cresent Color thread and the pattern. I just need to go fabric diving for something suitable. Tell me I should start it. I usually wait until Christmas Day to begin the first new piece of the year but this is calling my name so loudly. (Tell me to start it.) And it's the perfect gift for someone I absolutely, tell me what I should do! (Start it.) Be strong and resist or be weak and begin it? (You know which way I am leaning...I just need that nudge over the edge, hee-hee!). Leave a comment, thumbs up or thumbs down.

Here's my progress on Blessings and Kind Wishes. See I got some of the leaves stitched and my storks grew legs. And I added a word or two. But this piece really is a struggle for me. Sorry for the wrinkles, I don't iron my pieces to take pictures of them.

And lastly, is my progress on Beatrix.

I stitched the floral motif next to the vine-y circle this week and the lower left 1/2 medallion yesterday. I also worked on the motif under the vine-y circle a late last night. She's being true to her word, the AVAS is luxurious AND she wasn't a bit of trouble.
Well, my oven timer just went off, I am making a pumpkin pie. Today, the DH and I are celebrating our Thanksgiving. Turkey breast with all the trimmings. We are going to the lovely Jenna's parents for the big day so the DH wanted a "test run" before Thursday. I know I'll be good today cause pumpkin pie isn't my favorite. Now if it was apple pie, then I would be in trouble!!

So thanks again for popping in, leave a comment or a dozen. I LOVE hearing from you!

Mr. Sandman, where are you? Plus stitching news

It's 1 AM in Upstate NY and guess what, gang! I'M AWAKE!!! Oh gosh, I've got insomnia. Again. More frequently then I've had in the past too. It's stress and about 12oz of caffeine too many. So, here I sit, cruising on the computer, waiting for that Mr. Sandman. It's cold here too so that's not helping. I went to bed, realized that a) I was cold and b) I was hungry. No point in tossing and turning. So downstairs I came, woke up Chrissy the Wonderdog when I turned on the light and proceeded to boot up the computer. Next I went and got a banana. But it's not enough and I am seriously contemplating making hot cocoa. You know the warm milk, sleep inducing aid but I can't decide if I need the extra calories right now. See, I went to WW on Thursday and I am ashamed to say and honestly, I can't believe this either, I GAINED 4 pounds in a week. Yea, yea, I was not a good Weight Watcher during the week but I didn't think I was SO BAD to have put back on EVERYTHING that I lost over the previous 3 weeks. But I did, the scale doesn't lie, and I am sad and upset with myself. So now, I am watching and journaling and walking on the treadmill...and praying that I stay in control over Thanksgiving weekend which will be a veritable food fest.

Anyway, I got a ton of stitching done tonight. I broke my promise and stitched on Bea for almost 5 hours even though I should have worked on Blessings and Kind Wishes. Yes, I didn't do too much today other than fight the crowds at the grocery store and do a couple of loads of laundry. But in my defense, I needed to just decompress and she softly whispered, "Me, stitch on me, I have luxurious silk and I promise I won't give you trouble." The little hussy...yea, she seduced me and we shared a lovely evening together. I completed an entire 1/2 motif on the left side and started a second. I am almost at the 1/2 way point with her. Picture tomorrow, promise.

On Friday, I stitched on Blessings and Kind Wishes but for only an hour or so because I really wasn't enjoying the process AT ALL. My storks have legs now and there's a little more done on the vine encircling them. I am thoroughly disappointed with the Weeks Dye Works thread I'm stitching with though, it's very thin and well, crunchy to my touch. The floss is not covering well (actually it's skimpy) and it's knotting up terribly even though I ran it over a damp sponge before using it to see if I could get it un-kinked. I got so frustrated with it that I put it down. I have to work on it though, it's a gift. And even though I am 1/2 way done with it, I'm not feeling the love. I don't want this piece to be a chore because it's a gift and I don't want to resent having to stitch it.

I've got a question for you stitchers out there....I want to bead the edges of an ornament. I backstitched both the stitched piece and the backing piece and I will lace them together. When do I add the bead to the lacing? After I lace the backstitch or as I am lacing? Or in the middle, after I put my needle through the first backstitch then add the bead and finish lacing the 2nd backstitch? Help! Describe how you add beads to a laced edge.

Well, I broke down and made cocoa. And after I drink it, I'm going back to bed. Hopefully, the DH hasn't hogged all the blankets. He does that, you know, and I get left with the sheet. It's not warm enough even if it's flannel. So thanks for stopping by and tomorrow, I'll post some stitchy pictures. Stay warm.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Stitching pictures!!!

Thanks to Let's Stitch, I've been more diligent about taking pictures of my progress and I am more inclined to post them too. Here are some pictures of my stitching adventures from this week.

Blessings and Kind Wishes and the ornament from the 2008 JCS.

My storks are re-appearing with the correct color of tail feathers, I might add. The little ornament is such a quick stitch. If I get off my fanny and go upstairs and retrieve the thread for the bird, this ornament could be completed in an hour or so. But I am lazy right now, so it'll wait.

The piece below is a Quaker piece of my own design, stitched over one on 28ct Lambswool Lugana in Silk N' Thread, Autumn Foliage. About 5 years ago, I and many other stitchers got caught up in the Quaker frenzy. And yes, I still like them and snap the patterns up regularly, especially if they're reproductions. I decided I wanted to try to design my own sampler and stitch a box lid for a wooden tea box I picked up at ACMoore. And being the over-acheiver that I am, I decided to stitch the sampler over one thread to fit the box lid. This is my progress so far.

This week, I finished the 1/2 medallion on the bottom and started the 1/2 flower basket above it. I do not stitch regularly on this (or any Quaker for that matter) because after awhile, I find them monotonous. But it doesn't stop me from starting new Quakers (I think I have 6 Wips). You'll have to excuse the grey photo, it's raining terribly here in Upstate NY and the light is terrible. I don't know why I chose to stitch on it. I was going through my Wip stack looking for something to catch my fancy and this piece rose to the top. I don't know when I'll stitch on it again either cause I've had my fill of over one and Quaker motif monotony.

I am in the mood to stitch Christmas ornaments though. They are addictive. It's given me a boost in the happy dance department and it feels nice to finish something relatively quickly.

Well, I should stop rambling...I need to get on the treadmill and walk off the bagel that I ate this morning. The DH and I are going to go see Quantum of Solace tonight. I should say, we hope to see it because it opened last night to a lot of buzz so it may be sold out before we get there. I hope not cause a night out (even if we really shouldn't go because of our tight budget) would feel nice for a change.

So thanks for dropping by. Leave a comment! I like to hear from you!

Friday, November 14, 2008

Random Facts - I've been tagged and I'm IT!

Sue from Liv "n Laf tagged me to respond to this little questionare. Actually, she DARED me into responding by saying, C'mon Joanie, you KNOW you WANNA...ok, I'm game...Here goes.

The rules are as follows:
1. Link to the person who tagged you.
2. Post the rules on your blog.
3. Write six random things about yourself.
4. Tag six people at the end of your post.
5. Let each person know that they have been tagged by leaving a comment on their blog.
6. Let the tagger know your entry is up.

Random things about me:

  1. I do not like enclosed spaces or heights. I get sweaty palms on an elevator especially if it's full of people. I'd rather take the stairs (and I usually do) unless it's like 25 floors. Then I swallow hard, get on the elevator and pray we don't get stuck.
  2. I have a fear of clowns and praying mantis. OK, yes, I am weird. Just don't put me in an elevator with them. Because I'd turn into a quivering mess and be scarred for eternity.
  3. I don't like to walk across bridges, especially high bridges. (See #1.)
  4. I cry at the drop of a hat. Doesn't matter if it's a happy or sad thing. If I get moved by it, I'll cry. It's a given. I've watched You've Got Mail and Homeward Bound (the dog movie) and it's a sure bet that I'll cry at the end. My Cadet just rolls his eyes. When he was younger, he'd put those movies on the VCR just to laugh at me when I reached for the tissues when Tom Hanks called his dog at the end of the movie right before he met up with Meg Ryan. And in Homeward Bound when the old dog comes over the hill, that's when I start blubbering . The Cadet was amazed that I had the same reactioneven after the 500th time I watched those movies. Goodness, I'm getting teary-eyed just thinking about those movies. Pass the tissues.
  5. I love popcorn. And I'll eat it until I get sick. When the DH and I go to the movies, he buys the BIG bucket otherwise he won't get any popcorn. He thinks I am a pig because I'll eat the entire container if he'll let me.
  6. I love the Kentucky Derby, I've watched every race for the last 45 years (and not the replays either). And I've never missed watching all the Triple Crown races (the Derby, Preakness & Belmont) for at least 30 years. When I was a little girl, my Mom would call me in from playing with my friends to watch the race. And on the Sunday after the race I cut the winner's picture out of the paper and put it into a scrapbook. In college, my friends thought I was nuts cause I'd drop what I was doing to go sit in front of the TV.

Ok so there you have it. Weird Facts about Joanie. Hope you got a chuckle...and I don't think I'll be passing this on cause all the bloggers that I would tag have participated. Sorry...

Sunday, November 09, 2008

An ornament stitched and a progress picture too!

Don't look now but I actually stitched a freebie! This little snowman is from a little promotional card I got for buying all of the new Prairie Schooler patterns when they were released earlier this year. Since I am such a snowman nut, I KNEW I'd be stitching him up soon. There's just something about snowmen that make me smile and think all is right with the world.

Prairie Schooler - Snowman
32ct Rue Green linen
This is the progress picture. It's a Blackbird Design's Loose Feather pattern, Blessings and Kind Wishes stitched with the recommended thread but on Lambswool linen instead of the recommended R&R linen.

I am having the dickens of a time trying to keep the frogs away from this piece. I messed the birds twice, the border and the placement of some of the words. Honestly, I would be done stitching it if it wasn't for those contemptable frogs. But, I persevere and rip out my mistakes and try again, sometimes more than once (my stork had a rust color butt for pete's sake until I looked at the picture on the front of the pattern and found out that the feathers are grey not gingersnap) and move on, trying all the while not to loose interest or throw the thing in the trash. So the bird's are reappearing without rust color feathers on their behinds, in the correct place and with the right words.

Gosh, I hope that this business with the frogs are past. Hop away, hop away to a knitter (no offense all you yarn-lovers, but us poor stitchers have frogs 24/7 and it's time for a vacation) for goodness sake!

I did start another ornament and kitted up a third. I am working on yet another Blackbird Design, the stocking ornament from this year's JCS ornament issue. I've kitted up the 2006 Quaker design from them too, in Mulberry GAST on my favorite linen, Lambswool. No progress pictures on either of them because they are in the early stages of stitching, one is a blob and the other is unstarted.

I've started to paint again too, I am painting a very cool Christmas cookie plate that I will share with you when it's done. I will either Ebay it or put it on Etsy. And I have a few other ideas floating in the ol' noggin on some other painted pieces too. Stitching may slow down a little because I need to make some cash for a few unexpected expenses and I am hoping painting will be profitable enough to pay those bills.

Well, it's off to make some lunch and get dinner in the oven. I'm making pot roast and want to put it into a slow oven for a long time so it's melt-in-your-mouth tender. So off to the kitchen with me!

Thanks for stopping by this Sunday afternoon. I hope football is on and your needle is in your hand!

Sunday, November 02, 2008

A small update

A small update for you...I am not in the best of moods so I wanted to blog a little bit of stitching.
Below is La-D-Da's, Something Wicked. I started this for my SIL a few weeks ago and believed (erroneously) that I could get it stitched in time to send it to her as a pick-me-up for Halloween. She likes Halloween, she gets a chuckle out of it and God knows she certainly needs a cackle right about now.

I made a counting error near the instep of the boot which meant a run in with the FROGS. I had the entire top of the boot outlined including the curling toe. When I started stitching the sole of the boot I realized I made a mistake because instead of 3 stitches where the boot thins out, I had 5. I really thought about leaving it or fudging it but my anal retentive self stepped in and forced me to pull out at least 200 stitches. I am really glad I am using DMC instead of NPI silk that the pattern calls for. I would have been doubly mad at all that waste of silk thread. All that's left to remove is that black blob on the right. I couldn't stand ripping out any more stitches so I ended up fixing the error and restitching the top portion. And it was worth pulling out all that black DMC cause the charm of this boot is that L-O-N-G, thin section. And yes, I've counted correctly this time. And no, my darlin' SIL will not get this for Halloween this year. Sigh...until NEXT Halloween.

As part of the stitching challenge on Let's Stitch, I started a little freebie by The Prairie Schooler. It's one of those little freebie cards. This one is a snowman. I need to make some ornaments. I want to give the Cadet and the lovely Jenna some handmade things for their tree. I thought the snowman was cute. It's stitched on 32ct Rue Green linen with DMC.

Well, I think that's all I'll post for now. I was going to bitch to you all about my frustrations with this house and the fact that nothing is 100% complete and what is, is not right and that we have 12 windows to install, 1/2 the siding to re-buy, trim and moulding to install and NO MONEY to do any of it because my no good contractor fleeced us for an obscene amount of money and left us high and dry. But I decided not to pour out those feelings to you cause a) you can't help me b) I am trying to stop complaining about everything that's not right and just be grateful and thankful that I have what I have. It's not easy. And I took out everything on my poor DH who is just beginning to thaw out after my unlady-like outburst complete with angry words and tears.
Sometimes it just goes that way.

Friday, October 31, 2008

Happy Halloween!!

Just wanted to wish everyone a spooky evening!

Monday, October 27, 2008

Blessings & Kind Wishes, Beatrix Potter Update and Frogs

I started LA-D-DA's, Something Wicked last weekend while watching Russell Crowe in *A Good Year*.

I don't know why I started another new piece, it just called my name and I caved. I've been in a Halloween mood so maybe that's why. Maybe it was because I think the boot is too cool. And I love the design. Do I really need a reason to add another piece to my eleventy-dozen WIP? Nah...what's one more.

I stitched the outline of the boot so that I could mindlessly stitch some evening when I am burned out and don't want to count. On Friday, I needed to mindlessly stitch until realized that I am off by 2 stitches somewhere near where the boot thins out. I found the error and I will have to rip out about 50 stitches on the thin part of the boot. It's just a pain.

Last night, I worked on Blackbird Designs, Blessings and Kind Wishes, while I watched Pretty Woman on TV. I stitched some of the vines around the storks and I worked on the left stork and almost finished the bird's body until...DUM, DUM, D-U-M-M-M! I realized that I mislocated the stork by one thread too far to the left of where it should be placed..DRAT!!! DOUBLE DRAT!!! Now, I have to rip out 3 hours of work. Dang you, Richard Gere! Why are you eye candy???!!!

Does anyone have any frog repellant? Send some my way, PLEASE!!! I've been invaded by frogs. Actually, I have to stop watching movies with stars that are easy on the eyes.

I worked a little on Beatrix Potter during the Quaker Challenge on Let's Stitch and I finally got a picture of my progress.

I love the sampler and the AVAS silk is wonderful. I find this sampler very relaxing to work on but I don't think I will stitch any more on Bea until 2009. I joined the Beatrix Potter SAL and it doesn't officially begin until January '09. So I decided just to put Bea to rest for a few months until the SAL officially begins and until then, concentrate on making some ornaments for the Cadet and Jenna and work on some Christmas presents. I will be making a lot of my presents this year since money is a bit tight with the DH on leave of absence. I better get busy cause before you know it, Santa will be here.
I ordered a bunch of stash yesterday. I really shouldn't have but I needed some retail therapy. Just a bit down and yes, clicking on a few OLNs was theraputic. But I have to watch my pennies for the rest of November. I bought a bunch of Lizzie*Kate cause I saw on Amy Stitches some ornaments made with Lizzie*Kate designs that were adorable. I bought new Plum Street Samplings Halloween patterns and honestly, I can't remember what else. I do know that my mailbox will be happy when they get here. I am looking forward to opening my mailbox cause it's like getting presents instead of bills for a change.

Well, I just wanted to reach out to you today. I am sorry for the rambling post but it just felt good to *talk*. I hope you are having a good Monday. After dinner, I'll be in my cozy spot with my needle ripping out either a witch's shoe or a stork and I hope you will be stitching this evening too! But not frogging. You make progress. I'll keep the frogs from you.

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Don't look now....but I FINISHED something!!!

Tra-la-la-la-la!!! Happy dancin' in Upstate NY!!!!! I finished stitching Prairie Schooler's, Autumn Wind, last night and I have to tell you that I am more than happy with it!!! I am amazed! Here it is in it's completely finished state!

Prairie Schooler, Autumn Wind
28ct Lambswool Lugana
Stitched over one thread
I started this piece WAY back in (I think) 2005 as an SAL with Patti and Cathy. They finished their samplers a very long time ago but I am the turtle and usually get left in the dust during SALs. Funny thing about it though, that mainly happens because I have stitcher's ADD and generally move on to something that's more appealing to me at the time. But eventually, either guilt or guilt gets the best of me and I end up working on it again until that ADD strikes and it's off to the next shiney new project. Gee, now I know why I have eleventy-dozen WIPs...
But never mind, it's done now and I am swirling and twirling around my family room because it's GORGEOUSLY FINISHED!!!
I've also made some progress on Beatrix Potter but no pictures just yet.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Hello, hello? Are you still with me?

Whew! What a couple of weeks!!!! My life has been very busy so of course, my stitching has suffered. We did get through our hugh certification audit (with 0 nonconformances AND a 100% score! YAY!!!) and now it's on to an entirely different certification, one that my partner and I know nothing about. It never ends but I'll take the crazy as long as it means I will stay employed. After all, I MUST support my habit.
I did work a little on Beatrix Potter and I finished up a Halloween exchange piece that I can't show you just yet. That's been the extent of my needlework.
Can you believe October is over half over? I must start thinking about Christmas gifts. I need to decide on what I am going to make and get busy. I don't think I am going to stitch large gifts, most of what I am thinking of stitching are ornaments. Mainly because these gifts are for my Weight Watcher friends and a couple of my co-workers. Our family doesn't have any small children to buy for now, so the young adults get what they love..$$$ which is ALWAYS the right size and color.
Oh, and the Cadet and the lovely Jenna have set a wedding September of '09, which gives me only 11 months to work on a wedding sampler. I know which one I am going to stitch, it's going to be Victoria Sampler's, Heirloom Wedding Sampler.

I love it and I know that they will too. I am debating on whether to stitch it on a cream backround so the hardanger stands out. What do you think? If you have suggestions, please tell me. I know that I don't want to stitch it on the platinum cashel, I don't like the color. And I will be changing out a couple of things on the sampler too. That means I better get the graph paper and pencils out.

Well, I've got to to the big holiday craft show in Syracuse! This weekend has been one thing after another fun thing...a dinner Friday, a baby shower yesterday and now a craft show! I'll write more later!

Friday, September 19, 2008

Some pictures

Here you go, progress on Autumn Winds. I'm close to finishing it. Hopefully, if my eyes don't give out on me (since this is over one), I may have that happy dance this weekend. Ok, orchestra, get your instruments tuned up for that toe tappin' music.

This dropped in my mailbox this afternoon. I am thrilled with this issue. There are many, many ornaments that I want to stitch! JSC just outdid themselves with this issue. Usually, I find a few ornaments I might want to stitch but this time, each time I turned a page, I said to myself, "Oh, this one is a must stitch, and this one, and that one" to decide WHICH one to start first!

More later!

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Hi Everyone!

No, I didn't fall off the face of the earth. There is so much going on in life at Chez Crazytown that I have been a tad overwhelmed. Many, many things are tugging at me to do and to deal with, so much that I haven't even stitched at all in the last week, hence the lack of blogging. After all, this is a stitching blog (or I try to keep it to that but I don't always succeed). I was going like gangbusters to finish my Prairie Schooler, Autumn Winds, and I think I am just about 3 hours away from finishing it up but my stitching mojo was sucked up in the vortex of work, home, finances, worry, stress, So, maybe, just maybe, I'll find enough *umph* to siphon out a little stitching energy and finish it up. At least, I hope so!

I did join Vonna's Me, Myself and I Round Robin blog. I've always wanted to stitch one of these but I can not keep up with the pressure of a deadline right now. No pressure with this round robin! I've chosen to stitch a Prairie Schooler town and have it be perpetually in Autumn. I am plotting out a fairly elaborate border right now and thinking about my house placement. It's going to be great fun. Construction begins on December 31st, so stay tuned for updates. I can work on my border before then so you'll get a peek at it when I get something concrete down.

Have you seen this little gem? It's a Just Nan piece called Boo.

I almost bought it from ABC Stitch Therapy last night but I held firm. I am not a Just Nan fan, I think I was taken with the tin more than anything. Tonight, I lost my resolve and I broke down to buy it, but it's gone from the website. Oh snooze, you loose! Actually, I saved myself $50. Good thing too.

On the home front, the DH is on leave from work, hence the financial worries. He is student teaching. He goes back to work in January until August, then he *retires* to his *encore* career as a Math teacher (Middle & High School). He's good at it. He loves it. But it means a GREAT reduction in cash flow. Like a creek that shrinks down to a mere trickle. I'm nervous about it, particularly if he doesn't find work right away. Prayers, please.

My SIL was diagnosed with breast cancer on Friday. She saw a surgeon today and she will have a lumpectomy on Oct 3rd. They tell her if there is no complications, she'll be back to work in 2 weeks. Two weeks! Geez, no recovery time there! Prayers for her too, please. And for my brother too, who was let go from his job of 18 years a couple of months ago. They really need prayer.

At work, we are preparing for the biggest audit of my career. It's been a zoo and will continue for the next 3 weeks. We will get through it but it will be stressful.

On a lighter note, the lovely Jenna has returned from her Australian adventure. The Cadet is so happy to have his love home. They are joined at the hip whenever he's not in school or at work. She had a great experience Down Under. What an adventure! Anyway, I believe wedding bells will ring this time next year. I am so happy for them.

Anyway, that's the latest news from me to you. I want to thank all of you who've hung in there with me and I do appreciate all of you. I am so glad you've stopped by and I hope you'll continue to visit. I like the company!

Hopefully next time, the post will be filled with stitchy pictures. I don't think that my mojo is completely gone, it's just taking a back seat to a lot of other things. I could never give up my stitching...they'd be coming after me with that white jacket if I did! Hey, have a great day tomorrow...everyday is a blessing and a gift even when the days are filled with things I can not control.

Monday, August 25, 2008

Stitching Progress

Progress since my last true stitching post. See, there IS more to my blog than just me whining on about things that usually are out of my control.

I've stitched sporatically over the last month, mainly because my work life spilled over into my personal life and my personal life got equally as crazy. But true to form, stitching provided me with a respite from the nuttiness of my job, my house and my family (when they've irritated me).

Apologies for the quality of the pictures, they are not as dark as they seem on your monitor. It's a combination of my tremendous digital camera and the lighting in the living room.

First of all is Blackbird Designs, Where My Heart Blooms. I'm working on the house now. It's a good car project because the linen is 30 count and fairly open weave so with my cheater glasses, I can stitch while the DH and I drive somewhere (usually to see Mike).

And a finish!!! This is also a Blackbird Designs pattern from the book Trix or Treat. called Merry Hallowe'en.

I started it in 2005 (!!) and the only thing I had to stitch on it was the word Hallowe'en. So yesterday, I spent the better part of 3 hours finishing it up. I have the frame so let's see if I can frame it before Halloween. It's stitched on some no name fabric with Weeks Dye Works cotton in Mascara. I was really unhappy with the thread, it was stiff and kinky. It knotted up terribly and would not lay flat even when I dampened the floss. I think that was the reason it took me so long to finish this little piece up. It didn't live up to the expectation of an easy stitch!

Prairie Schooler, Autumn Leaves. Stitched over one with DMC on 28 count Lambswool evenweave.

I am working on it as part of a stitching challenge for the month of August with the Prairie Schooler BB. I also started this in (gasp!) 2005 right after the pattern was released. I was part of an SAL with Patti and Cathy. They finished their samplers and I, true to form, bring up the rear. I love how it's coming out but I can't work on it for very long because over one and my eyes don't seem to get along for an extended period. I'd like to finish it before the end of September to be able to display till the end of Autumn. Yeah, right!

Another Blackbird Designs, Blessings and Kind Wishes. This is a gift for a far away dear friend. I am working it on the recommended fabric with the recommended thread. So far, I am enjoying stitching it. The Weeks thread isn't behaving any better than it did on Merry Hallowe'en. Does anyone else have this problem with overdyed cotton fibers?

Lastly is my Beatrix Potter Quaker Sampler. I must be in the mood to work on her. Don't know why really.

So there you have it! I have been stitching when time and energy has allowed. I hope you like my progress and I welcome all feedback. Now, please excuse me, today is a vacation day and I intend to sit in my favorite spot cross stitching the majority of the day away.

Thanks for dropping by!

Saturday, August 23, 2008

When Life Hands You Lemons - PUCKER UP!!

Although I believe that the saying states that one should make lemonade. Whatever.

First of all, my lovely SUV decided it needed new brakes ($675 poorer, I am no longer grinding grooves into the rotors) AND my WOOBIE, Joe, now has an *ow-ie* that is going to cost me plenty because he and Maggie cannot co-habitate peacefully side-by-side in the barn. Seems they decided to fence fight over the stall wall. Maggie whaled on her stall door which she completely knocked off the track bending the wheel mechanism inside the track so the door does not slide correctly AND the force of kicking said door tore the door latch off the stall wall where it was found across the barn aisle lying on the floor 12' away. She is physically ok, just pretty pissed off. Joe, however, is not. He kicked his stall wall (made of 2 inch thick oak boards) and has hurt his left hind leg. He is gingerly resting his leg on his toe and will not bear any of his ample weight on it except to take short, mincing steps to where ever he wants to go. Mainly, he is standing in one spot. If he wants to drink, he just swings his head to his bucket so he really doesn't have to move too far.

So this morning, I made the call to Dr. Wendy. She is coming Monday morning to check him out. In the meantime, I am syringing bute (horse aspirin) down his throat 2 times a day. God only knows what this vet bill is going to cost me. I swear, I've had this horse for 16 years and he's only seen the vet a handful of times in those 16 years until THIS year when we've seen Dr. Wendy 3 times in less than 9 months.

There goes the extra paycheck this month...eaten by the car and the horse. Can't seem to get ahead...blech.

Mike is home from Australia and is terribly lonely because his lovely fiance is there until mid-September. He also is unhappy because school starts Monday and so does ROTC and work. So his Summer abruptly ended this morning at 5:30 when he returned to Dunkin Donuts completely jet-lagged and in desperate need of caffeine.

On stitching notes, I have stitched but there are no photos because I can not find the camera that the DH took with him to Pittsburgh when he visited his family last weekend. It's MIA. I've worked on a number of things (my Hungarian Sampler, Blackbird Designs and Prairie Schooler) and made significant progress on a few. So this is just a tease until I locate my lovely temperamental, 2 pixel wonder of a digital camera and take some pictures. So stay tuned!

But! Have you seen these new designs from The Primitive Needle? TOO CUTE!! MUST HAVES! Love them so much. I can't wait till they are released.

Near Halloween


So that's all from Chez Empty Wallet...stop by again soon, please...K?

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Exciting News!

I have exciting news to share! The Cadet and the lovely Jenna are officially engaged to be married!

The ever romantic Cadet proposed to lovely Jenna on an Australian beach at sunset on Tuesday. And of course, the answer was YES! To say they are excited is beyond words.

The DH and I couldn't be more pleased.

Congratulations, Jenna and Mike!

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Three years

Three years ago today, I lost my Dad. How I miss him....

He was a wonderful Dad, a good husband and a family man. I know that he is in Glory with our Lord and Savior, Jesus. I am happy for that but sad because he isn't here and I miss him so much.

Saturday, August 02, 2008

How can I resist???

These are the new releases from Prairie Schooler. HOW AM I TO RESIST STITCHING THEM???? Especially the Halloween pattern, since I love Halloween and all things vintage Halloween? Move over Beatrix. I think the Witches are taking your place in line!

Rainy Saturday in Upstate New York. It's nice and I wish I had time to stitch today. Busy weekend. Insane work weeks to come for the next few months. I will post progress pictures of the Hungarian Sampler later today.

Have a great weekend filled with stitching and family and friends. And food, don't forget food!