Friday, December 30, 2005
Richard already spent most of his day at the nursing home signing papers for his mother to get into a different part of the home, Medicare stuff, etc.
My thrill for the week was my Stash of the Month Silkweaver shipment, which you can see here. You get a partial glimpse at some ornaments that have yet to be sewn up (at top). I just dragged them out of hiding to remind myself. There's fabbie for a needleroll, beads, Stranded By the Sea hand-eyed fiber, beading needles, and a Tacky Bob box for the Mill Hill beads in the 4 pack at top. The pamphlet has a pic and chart inside to stitch, with instructions to finish into the needleroll, all designed to match the adorable little pouch at bottom.
I've wasted hours upon hours today surfing eBay and have the perfect anniversary gift for Richard coming. He loves the old Seinfeld series, so I found a cheap store to buy them on eBay. By now, I know exactly what's going to turn him on, so to speak (quit laughing), and this will. He's easily entertained, but put something on that I love, and he's asleep in a few minutes. Doesn't "get it." Farting salt and pepper shakers turn him on though. He bought some for the apartment where he and his best friend work (with whom we're going to dinner tonight) near Chicago in orthodontist offices. Bodily functions are his obssession. Whatever floats your boat. More excitement tomorrow! Living on the edge for sure, aren't we?
Wednesday, December 28, 2005
BTW, if you read about my sick blog that puked, I gave it a little TLC, and it got over the vomiting.
How do you balance your stitching time with your other obligations such as work, household chores, etc.?
I've never claimed to be a good time manager, but I'm getting plenty of motivation from my stitching bloggers' ideas to help me turn over a new leaf. I don't like resolutions, as I always break them. I'm really working on goals, and this balance of chores and stitching time is an important one for me for 2006.
Tuesday, December 27, 2005
I had a wonderful Christmas, but unlike some hardy souls, I'm always ready for it to be over. Even as a child, I remember being happy when it was over, even though, greedy as I was, I'd make notes of things I wanted the next Christmas. We always celebrated at my paternal Grandmother's, and I remember packing up my stuff and being anxious to get it home to my playhouse in the basement. It was "all about me." That's why I very seldom talk about the gifts I receive at Christmas now because it always seemed to be a brag session when I was younger; a one-upmanship, which is not what Christmas is to me now, though in another post, I'll have to tell you about the most meaningful gift I received.
The promise of a new year being more productive has never meant as much to me as it does this year, and since I began blogging and reading others' blogs, joining the Friends Gather BB and Carol's Mirabilia SAL Stitchers Yahoo Group, I've really been planning and scheduling and hoping to make this new bloggers' ring with all my new friends a fresh new approach to my stitching. 2005 was not a productive year for me, but my blog friends have provided me with so much friendship, entertainment, and inspiration that I've become refreshed by my stitching; whereas, before, I was pushing myself to stitch and have now pulled out all my hidden UFO's with a renewed vigor and have even quit feeling guilty about getting new stash. I had slowed down to the speed of a slug, and the thought of buying new stash made me feel criminal.
My plan has already been started, and it's working! I've been practicing, working my plan. I started Christmas Day after all the festivities were over and we were home. I stitched on a piece for two hours before my eyes said "sleepy time." I had worked so hard the day before making pies and other dishes to take to DD's house, and sewing up two gifts at the last minute for DD and granddaughter. After spending all day at her house with my grandkids, laughing, eating, watching new movies, playing their new video games, and watching fashion shows of their new clothes, I was beat. Stitching was the perfect unwinding after an exhausting day. Then, I turned off the lights and watched one of the movies I'd been given, "Brothers Grimm," which I had asked for. Richard bought it and hates that kind of movie, so he was snoring 5 minutes into it.
The grandkids were a joy to be with and loved all their gifts, but none are small anymore, so I guess I'll have to wait till I'm a great grandmother for the magic to return.Thought I'd share the two gifts I sewed up Christmas Eve. The one is a roll pillow; the other a wallhanging with rings sewn on back for hanging. You will also see my youngest kitty, Amber, who is my constant sewing companion, and has been instrumental in speeding up my cross stitching, as she chases the needle and thread from the underside.
Wednesday, December 21, 2005
May the angels of cross stitch who hover around me forgive me my transgressions of greed or wishful thinking in my finishing abilities in this fleeting lifetime with the ever-growing piles of threads, fabrics and charts. May the angels also forgive and comfort me in my weakness with the growing list of groups I feel compelled to join and participate in. May they kick me in the butt to get my chores done before sitting down to stitch.
May the big stick Anne S mentioned and BeckySC affirmed in my last post's comments come down upon me and knock in some common sense. May my pile shrink with time instead of grow higher when my guardian angel of cross stitch whispers "you don't need it" into my ear. May I find the strength from within to call a spade a spade and a WISP a UFO after several years in denial.
But most important of all, may I have the courage to reach deep down inside myself and list my UFO's in my sidebar.
Monday, December 19, 2005
Don't know why, but as Christmas nears, I always start reflecting on the year past and what high hopes I have for the next year. I've taken stock of all the stitching projects I've lain aside because I wanted to be sure I hadn't signed up for more than I could handle on BeckySC's Friends Gather board and my two most active Yahoo Groups, one unlisted and one owned by Shelleen, Faith, and me---Stitching Sisters. Holy cow! I counted up 18 projects, and I hate to use the acronym, but unfortunately, they've become the dreaded UFO's. The trick was to fit them into my sign-ups for the coming year on my groups. I believe that after being really careful, I have incorporated 4 into my SAL's, and I've added 2 new SAL's for interest. They were already in my stash, so no worries. I may add another to make it an uneven 7 to rotate.
What I'd like to do is figure out how to put them into my sidebar in a clever way, list all my UFO's in another clever way and show my progress in yet another clever way, the latter of which could be just a post with a pic, I guess. But I do love the bells and whistles of blogs I see around, LOL!
Don't wanna make this too long. Just a few thoughts and dreams I thought I'd pass by those of you who read this.
Friday, December 16, 2005
Wednesday, December 14, 2005
Please help! The woman is holding us hostage and sticking things on our heads now.
Personally, I tend to be very influenced by other stitching bloggers, and I really prefer reading tips on finishing or seeing new stash with which I'm not familiar, but most of all, I really enjoy watching progression on WIP's.
Sunday, December 11, 2005
I swear that this is the last of my new stash for a very long time, except for thread and my Silkweaver Stash of the Month shipment. These all came from Stitching Bits & Bobs from her last sale, waiting on an out-of-stock chart, and I had forgotten all about it, LOL! The kitty charts speak for themselves, but the two designs from White Willow Stitching are something new, and I had to try them. They're great charts, in multiple pages like HAED. I don't have a lot of fantasy, but I was smitten with "The Guardian." And "Herb Goddess" also speaks for itself with the cat in it. The colors are gorgeous!
Saturday, December 10, 2005
This year, there will be no resolutions made. My only resolution is to have fun and stitch whatever is calling to me; also get some long-standing UFO's into a rotation.
We're finishing up with a few more gifts to buy tomorrow and Monday (Richard has been a big help to me by being off for a week), then the shopping is over. I have a couple more posts with some pix in the next day or two of some things I've received lately. Just have to get my camera back.
Thursday, December 08, 2005
Wednesday, December 07, 2005
No, I'm sorry to say that I'm such a slow stitcher, it takes all my time just doing things for my family. I've just never had the inclination to do anything for those I don't know. I know---not a very charitable person.
I was pleased with Tuesday's weigh-in with Weight Watchers since I hadn't been there for 3 weeks, ate like a pig Thanksgiving and didn't too bad afterwards either. I had a big mug of coffee before the meeting, which I never do. Not even a sip of water, usually, and gave into the deep freeze temps we're having in the Midwest and wore my jeans and thermal top---plus my jewelry, which I nearly always take off. Hey, it weighs something! I still lost and was extremely pleased. Here's my weight ticker:
Tuesday, December 06, 2005
It snowed in the night, and it's still spitting a bit today. The ground is so cold, it's actually sticking, and it's beautiful. Very festive!
I'm cleaning my entire downstairs today, then picking up grandkids from school but hope to get some stitching done later this evening. We're getting down to the wire for Christmas stitching, especially if it needs to be framed. Yikes!
I have to take some pix of the stash I just received, and I'll get it posted tomorrow.
Monday, December 05, 2005
Saturday, December 03, 2005
Thursday, December 01, 2005
Do you have rules in the way you stitch? (i.e., Do you start in the middle? Do you determine which blocks to stitch first? Do you always start from the top or the bottom? Do you have special paths to prevent wasting thread?)
I know this is weird to most of you, but I start in the upper right hand corner and stitch to the left \\\\ and back right ////. I'm not a leftie, but it has always been most comfortable for me and perfectly acceptable. I always look enough ahead to plan the shortest way to economize on thread, mostly because of the look of my backs. Great question, San!
Tuesday, November 29, 2005
I have to remind myself now & then just how very fortunate I really am. We just had a lovely Thanksgiving, and though all of us have things to be sad about, we all have so much more to be glad about. Without my family and friends, I am nothing. Here are some examples of two of my friends who sent me birthday gifts, and I've never met either one. It's not that I treasure the things so much as the gesture, though I really do love the things too. The top and middle picture is of the package Dianne Collins sent me for my birthday. I don't even know how she found some of the kitty things. Look at the 3 brass kitty plaques on the 3 frames for my 3 kitties. There's an organizer for the most disorganized gal in stitching circles. Look at the larger picture of the outrageous "witchy" cat I LMAO at! The Liz Claiborne pin has the citrine stones on the bee and is the moss green of the bulk of my clothing. She made the mushroom-shaped pin cushion I had admired on her own blog. The "flaky" snowman is a Boyds, which I collect. You can see it all for yourself---chock full of goodies for a crazy cat lady---even the Charles Wysocki card. Words cannot describe how humbled I was by the care with which these things were chosen for me.
Then, there is a lady I love whose name is Ruth Carlos. I've known her as long as I've known Dianne. I would love to meet her, especially since 1.) she's older than I, and 2.) she lives in Australia. Ruth is a kindred spirit. She's a generous spirit with a twinkle in her eye and an Erma Bombeck-type sense of humor. Right up my alley!
Long ago, she found out that I love Karen Couchman's designs. She's a native Australian, and I've always been in love with her critter designs. I told Ruth which designs I had, and she was supposed to let me know something from the USA not readily available to her. I never heard another word till just before my birthday, here comes these two lovely charts autographed by Karen herself. I wrote to Ruth to thank her and ask her what I can send to her. No response. All three of us---Dianne, Ruth, and I, have November birthdays, and now that I'm shaking off my pity party, I'm going shopping for these two lovely gals. November is pretty much over, but no matter. The holidays are upon us and 'tis the season for giving. My ideas are starting to come for Dianne. What about Ruth? Any other ladies from "down under" who can give me ideas as to what is difficult to come by in your corner of the world? And what a wonderful world it is when you have friends!
It turns out that this autoimmune disease runs in families and his younger brother has it, as well as one of his daughters. His mother, my maternal grandmother, had rheumatoid arthritis, as does my mother, which is also an autoimmune disease, but it's even more closely associated to what I have, which is systemic lupus erythematosis. It happened that a week after my uncle's death, my mother and I went yesterday to see our rheumatologist 45 miles from here. She told him of her brother's death, and he became very concerned about all the immunologically-damaged family members on that side of the family. CE is strongly associated with a group of genes on Chromosome 6, so my mother and I are being tested for any signs of this disease. They took 9 vials of blood yesterday from me yesterday, and 7 from my mother, and we were both checked for tumors. I exhibit many more of the symptoms than my mother, but he could feel no tumors. Should the blood tests show anything, I'm sure we'll be checked by more revealing tests for tumors than just the doctor's touch.
My heart just hasn't been into the computer, blogging, or anything else, for that matter. It has been the week from hell. I just hope my aunt's kids get home in time to see her alive. They're all coming Dec. 3, but I don't think she'll see another Christmas.
Thursday, November 24, 2005
I used to forget to do so, but as I grew older, I realized what an important thing it was to sign and date needlework for posterity, no matter how small and insignificant the piece might seem to the needleworker. Now, I always put my initials and date each piece. If it goes to my daughter, I put "Mom;" to my grandkids, "G'ma;" to my parents, I put "Nancy." If it's in my home, I just use my initials.
Wednesday, November 23, 2005
This will be framed for my granddaughter, Moriah, for her room. It's almost a joke, but she'll love it. She is nearly 15 years old, but everyone in the family has called her "The Princess" since she was very young, and still do. Is she spoiled? Yes, but in a good way.
It has been a long few days since I've blogged. My mother-in-law became very ill and was hospitalized. She's nearly 93 years old and refused to leave her home or have any help come in. Now, it has reached the point that the kids had no choice but to put her into a nursing home. The doctors would not release her to take back to her home, so she was sedated and taken by ambulance to the home. The kids are very shaken up because she has called the shots with them their whole lives, and they feel so guilty, they're nearly sick. We'll see how it all plays out, but when she gets her wits back, and any of them are there, I'm afraid she's going to make it even harder for them. It has been very upsetting for us all.
Friday, November 18, 2005
I cannot tell you how much this precious friend's thoughtfulness means to me. Her birthday is tomorrow, and I think many of you know her for her giving nature and unending talents. She's known as Dianne Collins from PA. We both had the maiden name of Knowles and have so many similarities that we have always thought we are related somewhere along the line. I wish I were half the person she is. She does so much for others and is so full of energy, she puts me to shame.
Dianne, how can I thank you for the bright spot in my day? Tiffany is smiling down upon us today. Thank you, my dearest one, Dianne.
Oh, and you can't really tell in the picture, but my inspirational calender is set to November 18, and the basket beside my sewing machine has some "smalls" I stitched, then finished. There is a little tin heart with fancy letters tied to a bouquet of fake flowers, just to be pretty, and a scissor holder and pincushion with spools of thread XS'ed on each tuft.
I can't think of a better place to put the lovely gift from Dianne than in my sewing room. Thank you for saving my day, Dianne!
Thursday, November 17, 2005
I didn't panic, as I had copied and pasted my template just a few days ago, and all my posts were still intact when I went to my control page to "edit posts." That's why I could go to bed and sleep. It was all still there, but I had to figure out how to get it back together as it was originally. I discovered I'd made a little mistake in adding an image, and it really fouled up the works. When I saw it, I immediately recognized the cure, and sure enough; VOILA..... I'm back in business today.
So, if you gals haven't done so lately, back up your blog in whatever fashion you do so, and when/if things go awry, you won't be panicked and are only a step away from restoration.
Wednesday, November 16, 2005
The Traditional Princess
You are generous, graceful, and practical with both feet planted firmly on the ground. You tend to be a little on the old-fashioned side. You value home, hearth, and family life and love to be of service to others. Role Models: Snow White, Maid Marian You are most likely to: Discover a hidden talent for spinning straw into gold.
What Kind of Princess are You? - Beautiful Artwork (Original Music is BACK!!!)
Monday, November 14, 2005
My stuff from The Needlework Shop came Saturday and was on my front porch overnight. My niece found it yesterday when she came to have a car title signed by DH. We never use the front door, so I never thought to check for it yet.
The limited edition of Mirabilia's Christmas Elf Fairy is just so sweet, and I got it 30% off because of my birthday. The rest are just adorable little kitty designs. I especially like Val's designs, but the two cat samplers are cute as a bug too. Perhaps instead of saying bug, I should say mouse?
"This woman has really crossed the line this time."
Friday, November 11, 2005
Wednesday, November 09, 2005
When comparing large projects versus small projects, which do you get more excited about finishing?
My first inclination when I read the question was to say, "Definitely large projects." But when I thought about it a bit longer, I realized it depended upon the design itself. It it's something close to my heart, or the perfect gift for a friend or family member, a small one is just as exciting as a large one. I find gathering the materials used in a large one very exciting though.
Amber really doesn't care whether I get excited over my projects. She like to sit on my lap and chase the needle and thread, which is why I like to take advantage of times like those upper right. She likes to nap in my wastebaskets when they're empty.
Cool little lapstand by Images, now adorned with a project that I'm going to do for my granddaughter for Christmas---"Flip Flops" by Hinzeit. It's difficult to see, but as with all Hinzeits, there are little charms---transparent hearts in green and pink, the fabric is a Silkweaver hand-dyed, and the specialty fiber colors are going to be so much fun to work with, especially the Needle Neccesities.
Saturday, November 05, 2005
Recently, many of the ONS' had links and took orders from their customers to the Needlework Show online. I decided to treat myself to something for my birthday. It was so much fun looking at all the designers' new stuff. I have so much stash, and I was looking for something really special and practical. I already have a Legends Grip-It Plus floor stand, which I can convert to use in a recliner or sit-on-it style. I started with the latter because of its portability and eventually kept adding things to it. Well, I found this really cool lap stand, and I asked my ONS lady about it, and she had seen it at a show and really liked it, as the man who makes them was just singing along with it. I can't even remember the name of it. So Shirley, my ONS lady, tells me mine is on its way, but it came to her first. She has decided she has to have one of her own, so I think I made a good decision. I'll always use my Grip-It, but this adds a new element to my stitching convenience and is really more portable than anything I have to date.
Then, I get a card from QVC telling me that if I choose an item over $50, they will defer interest if I make payments. Great. Another money-making scheme. I haven't yet chosen anything, but my sister has a gorgeous watch from there that is sterling silver and has a turquoise face, and I'm a Southwestern jewelry fanatic. So.....
Then (oh yeah), I get a letter from the Needlework Shop telling me I get one item at 30% off, and the rest at 25% off. Yeah, I bit on it.
THEN (afraid so), Heaven and Earth Designs has a birthday club that if you pay $10, they send you the pattern of your choice, even in the large print format ($4 more per pattern), and no shipping. Yup, you guessed it. I just sent them $10 via PayPal. OMG, did I have fun choosing my pattern. They're to-die-for, literally, for me.
None of this stuff has arrived yet, so no pix, but you can be sure when it all arrives, I'll be showing it off. In the meantime, I can't afford any more recognition of my birthday!
Here's a cute link for a little Thanksgiving fun. It brought back memories of this one.
Sunday, October 30, 2005
And here it is the day before Halloween, having received it yesterday. It reminded me I had a couple of other kitty Halloween "smalls," which I dug out and got a picture of what I want to do next year. I should have pulled out my piece of Bittersweet Jobelan that Pumpkitten calls for. I couldn't believe my luck in having the fabric also.
I have tons of other Halloween charts, but "Pumpkitten" reminded me of my kitty charts, and "Pumpkitten" is the cutest thing I've ever seen! I love it!
Tuesday, October 25, 2005
My daughter, Vanessa, emailed me the picture at the bottom left today. She and I both collect cats and Longaberger baskets. She has four cats to my three, and the one on the bottom left is the Mama of my kitty, Caiti, two years old, upper right. Mama's name is actually Tigger, but she answers to Mama. See how much Caiti looks like her Mama.
Anyway, Mama decided recently that she likes the looks of Vanessa's pantry basket between the top of the cabinets and the kitchen ceiling. She's a petite springy little thing, but after her jump, she was a bit tired, so she just took her nap in the basket. They all say she's dumb, but I think she's just a bit accentric. Hey, there's nothing stupid about getting nice and toasty on a cool day up near the ceiling where it's warm and no one can bother her. Besides that, she made a lot of pretty babies and brought a lot of happiness to several homes before she was spayed.
My kitty family is as follows: My newest, whom I featured in a previous post is Amber, right, and I adopted the little doll from the Care Shelter this month. She's pretty much calling the shots with my oldest, top left, Pibbie (short for Pib---meaning Pain In the Butt), who is nine, and last, but not least, is my two-year-old Caiti (pronounced Cat-Tee). They're equally precious in their own ways and are so completely different that it's amazing they do so well together.
Saturday, October 22, 2005
you start buying little splurges like hand-painted needle and scissor magnets. The scissor magnet at top is painted with a kitty that says "Meow." I love it!
At the bottom of the same card, I just stuck my needle magnet, not hand-painted, so you could see it too (my first initial).
I'll have to gather my scissor collection I've been acquiring from eBay and use them in a later post. Little indulgences....
Thursday, October 20, 2005
In these, the low days of catastrophic tragedy that break our hearts and make us want to quit life as we know it, run to help our fellow Americans who are hurting in a way we can't imagine; prices at the gas pump that make us wonder if we're going to be able to leave home; and just stressful news at every turn, making us all wonder at our futures, it's nice to have some happy stitchin' like my little Bent Creek "Dance of the Bumblebee." He was a delight to stitch, and I have his mate, "Jig of the Ladybug," kitted and ready to stitch for my therapy. Bless their little hearts for gracing my life. This happy little guy's lady will be joining him soon. For now, he has a sweet, little bee fairy flitting around.
Monday, October 17, 2005
|Your Brain's Pattern|
You have a dreamy mind, full of fancy and fantasy.
You have the ability to stay forever entertained with your thoughts.
People may say you're hard to read, but that's because you're so internally focused.
But when you do share what you're thinking, people are impressed with your imagination.
And how about a Birthdate Calculator and how the moon looked on that day; then an analysis of your name as it pertains to you personally? Awesome!
Saturday, October 15, 2005
Wednesday, October 12, 2005
This one is a fallish freebie, sent to me by Dianne Collins of PA:
Kreinik Manufacturing Co., Inc. :: Freebies :: Cross Stitch :: Halloween Cross Stitch :: Roly Poly Scarecrow
Tuesday, October 11, 2005
I ordered these things from Bobbie at Stitching Bits & Bobs during her Autumn Sale, all at 25% off. From left to right, An October Box by Cherished Stitches, Bent Creek's "Let Us Be Thankful Row (sooo cute), "My Favorite Primitive Stitching Bags" by Hands To Work, and the newest surprise Mirabilia, "Garden Beauty;" at the bottom is "Shawnon's Travel Sewing Kit" by Keslyn's (really pretty). Bobbie included a skein of green Rajmahal Art Silk as a gift, which you will see on the Bent Creek leaflet. I love getting stash in the mail!
Monday, October 10, 2005
Everyone, please meet Amber. Cross stitches and kitty kisses go together like needle and thread in my home.