Thursday, December 30, 2010

Up For A Challenge

I joined a blog as a contributor for a 2011 challenge and instead of the other Crazy January Challenge 2011 in which you start one project for 15 days, the "up for a challenge" is one in which you take 15 WIP's or UFO's and stitch on them throughout the new year. I can't afford to start 15 new ones without trying to clean up all the UFO's I unearthed from the bowels of hell under the basement stairway next to my craft room. There are at least a dozen more I didn't even remember where I had hidden that I didn't dare list. I'll have to wait till another year to dig those out and work on them. I'm running out of good years to work on my stitching as it is, and I keep on buying like I had several lifetimes ahead to stitch, but I guess the collecting is as much fun as the stitching. Below is my list for 2011:

1. "Winter Sampler" by Little House Needleworks
2. "The Library" by Little House Needleworks
3. "Peaceful Garden" by Moira Blackburn (BAP - what was I thinking?)
4. "Family Treasure II" by Told In A Garden (Marilyn Leavitt-Imblum)
5. "Cottage Retreat" by Julia Lucas in The Cross Stitcher magazine
6. "Sanctuary" by The Drawn Thread
7. "Gathering Goldfinches" kit by Dimensions
8. "Dolphin Family" kit by Creative Accents
9. "Golfing" by Hinzeit
10. "The Promise" by Just Nan
11. "Scent of Old Roses" by Mirabilia
12. "Summer's End" by Pamela Kellogg
13. "What A Ride" by Ruby Slipper Needlework Designs
14. Beneath the Sunlit Sky by Blackbird Designs
15. "Flip-Its 2002" by Lizzie Kate (yes, I still have 2 to go 8 yrs. later)

I don't plan to finish all these, but I least want to finish a few and work on all of them through the new year. I will have trouble sticking to nothing but these, and I already know there are newer ones I'll want to do. What are your stitching goals for 2011?

Saturday, December 18, 2010

I Fixed My Blog!!!

Yes, I did! It's clean as a whistle, and I've not stitched one stitch because of shopping, other obligations, and hours working on this blanketty blank blog. I now know what to do with multiple tries of getting new backgrounds. I tried till my old dry eyes were blurry, and I figured out how to spot errors that screw with Blogger. Now I feel I can do anything!

Thanks to all who tried to help me with their suggestions. I found that nothing can teach you like making your own mistakes and repairing them yourself. If anything ever trips you up on Blogger, let me know, and I'll try to help you out.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

I'm Still Alive

Unless you just like to read, you can skip to the pictures that are the only things I've finished since I last posted many months ago, for very good reason. I not only quit blogging, but I quit stitching as well. I just recently felt well enough to start stitching again. Even then, I coudn't quite get up the courage to start blogging after such a long absense. I still haven't fired up the camera, but DH scanned (on his desk) the few little things I've stitched after I lost touch.

It all started last spring after I lost my two sisters-in-law. I started feeling like my anti-depressant wasn't working, and both that and the Abilify were so very expensive (even with our insurance) that I ditched the Abilify and thought all was status quo, and I told the shrink that I wanted to switch the expensive Cymbalta to a generic anti-depressant. For the last several years I've been on the Fentanyl pain patch, not knowing that it was 80 times stronger than morphine and that getting off it was going to be hell. I was also having knee pain which was caused by an arthritic condition causing bone-on-bone. It was very painful, and I limped all the time. I needed a total knee replacement, but the surgeon wouldn't do the surgery with me wearing the patch. And when I went on the generic for Prozac, I had a drug interaction between that and the pain patch, from which I was gradually withdrawing. I was already having gastro-intestinal problems, but the drug interaction really kicked my butt. I began losing weight, not a bad thing, but I was really sick. I had to get off the Prozac and couldn't take anything for some time. Then I went into seratonin withdrawal with many of the same symptoms and many more. I just kept getting sicker and losing more weight.

In the meantime, I was at my deceased sister-in-law's house one night, getting ready for the movers to come clean out her furniture so we could get her duplex sold and dispose of what was necessary. I got up at 3AM to go to the bathroom when my bad knee gave out completely, and I crushed my foot and broke it. We were in a suburb of Chicago and had to go to a strange ER where I went through all the motions of getting x-rayed, getting crutches, and an orthopedic boot for a broken foot. I had to wait for that to heal before having the knee surgery while also getting off the patch.

That was July 9th that I broke my foot, then I spent the next few weeks with seratonin withdrawal and got off the pain patch entirely. It took me through the agony till the middle of August, when I got so depressed that I couldn't deal with it any longer. I surrendered myself to the psych ward of our hospital, where they put me on the generic for Effexor (anti-depressant) and Geodon for anxiety (I was already taking Xanax, but it wasn't enough). Thank heavens the shrink found no drug interactions with the combination that was introduced. The Durogesic pain patch was out of my system, based on the urine test they did, but I tested false positive for marijuana, LOL! I had to convince the doctor that I had tried it many years ago, and it made me have panic attacks, so I never did it again. I did all the group things that I felt were not for me and got out of the loony bin 4 days after entering. All my symptoms gradually abated, but I was still without seratonin untill about 3 weeks later, when I began  feeling the effects of the new meds.

I limped around without the pain patch, which had been masking the pain a lot, till my surgery was scheduled for October 11. I then had the knee replacement which is the biggest major surgery I've had in my lifetime, which has included many surgeries. I worked very hard at getting used to my new knee, and I began walking with just a cane the 2nd day after surgery and gave up even a cane a week after surgery. I'm still fighting some pain and stiffness, but the surgeon tells me it's much like breaking in a new car, and he tells me I'm leaps and bounds ahead of most of his knee patients. He was very pleased that I was walking without any aids at one week.

The few things that I have finished since my last post are pitiful for a stitcher, I know, but it's a real milestone for what I've been through. I've messed with this blog so much changing layouts that I have a ton of HTML at the bottom, but it doesn't change the function of the blog. I noticed that there is still the function of seeing the older posts even with the crap at the bottom. Maybe someday I'll be able to repair this thing.