Tuesday, September 16, 2014

All about Dan

Hello again!

Today is all about Dan, the stitching man!  While I was laid up he was able to squeeze in some stitching time in between working 2 jobs, having to cook, clean, do laundry and wait on me hand and foot.  Pretty sure I remember telling you all about the wonderful chart I was able to find at  February Market in Nashville.  Well, he finished the stitching on it but has yet to build his Mi'Lords necessities box to mount it on.  I think he's been a wee bit busy doing other things and box building isn't something you want to do late at night after you tuck your wife in bed!  He'll get to it eventually but in the meantime here is his finished piece.  Sorry no ironing, it's not on my list of approved activities.

This was his first time working on evenweave and his first time working with an overdyed floss.  I think he did a wonderful job!

Once Mi'Lords Necessities was finished he was ready to tackle a huge project.  One I wouldn't have touched with a ten foot pole.  Stitched on 32 ct Fog Linen from PTP using DMC floss he started the stitching in May I believe, since he brought it with him to retreat.  Yep, that's right, my man came to retreat!  The official reason he was there was to help bring the shop out for shop night but once we had things set up the man disappeared.  When I next saw him he was happily ensconced at a table full of women stitching away and laughing with the girls like he'd done it a million times! I wish I had taken a picture of it but I was busy working and didn't think about it.  The girls were very kind to him and even hooked him up with  his own stash that they pulled from the swap table.

Dan's Stash courtesy of the retreaters
There was a reason I am told for each chart they so thoughtfully chose for him but I am not aware of what those thoughts are.  Maybe some of them will chime in on the comments and let us all know.  One of our regulars, Carole, even made him a manly fob to go with his project.

Can you tell what the project is?  
But I digress...I have to give the man kudos, lots and lots of kudos.  Not only was this chart full of confetti stitches but it looks like one of the most boring pieces to stitch ever.  Cool when finished but one wouldn't get a sense of accomplishment as one stitched due to the nature of the chart.  You don't really see the picture until it's all done and you step back.  But I am happy to report that he finished this project this week and I think it's awesome.  Even his back looks good considering it's only his 3rd project.  Are you curious yet as to what it is?

Can I have a drumroll please!

This is a Ronnie Rowe Pen and Ink design called Concordia.  It's one of 3 ships, I'm pretty sure Dan won't stitch the other 2 but who knows?  It could happen.

Started back to work yesterday and stretched my first piece of cross stitch. I think it went pretty well.  I don't seem to have a lot of increased pain because of it anyway.  My arm is a little more sore but I also started PT so it could be that or a combination.  I plan to take it slow and easy, only working 2 hours a day at this time.  Still no stitching, I don't think I could handle having my head down to stretch and to stitch so stitching will keep till I get caught up a bit at work.

Hope you enjoyed hearing about Dan's stitching.  He's pretty proud of himself as he should be!

Take care till next time!


Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Back on my Feet

Wow!  Where does one start after such a long absence?  I'd say at the beginning of the absence but my poor pea brain can't remember that far back!  I do know at the time I was busy preparing for our Spring retreat so perhaps I should begin there in spite of it being old news.

The theme was Voyage of Discovery, based loosely on  Christopher Columbus and other explorer's voyages during the Age of Discovery.   Everyone there received 2 exclusive charts designed just for the occasion.  Dan designed and built the frame to fit either design and these were included in the attendees goody bag.  We offered a class where those that wanted to, could discover how to make a button bracelet.  We had a Rosewood Manor and a Fabric Flair Trunk Show, a swap table, brag table, massages, and door prizes also. All in all I think a good time was had by everyone.

Rosewood Manor Retreat Exclusive
My  Design
Goody Bags

Contents of the goody bags
this years ort container
complete with gold coins
Everyone received a brown paper package tied up with string
 containing the fabric and floss for the project.
all the goodies at check in 
Everyone had to "discover" buried treasure
 by digging in the jewels and coins
the treasure was a bottle containing the chart
Button Bracelet Class
the bracelet when finished
All the stitcher's stitching away!

It wasn't long after retreat that things kinda went to hell in a hand basket.  I had been having problems with my shoulders, neck, lower back since before Christmas. Went to the chiro, multiple times, had a deep tissue massage (never again!!!), went to physical therapy but nothing was making me feel better. Got up one morning found that sitting at the computer was no longer possible, the pain was too bad.  Went to work and spent half the time lying on the floor.  Went to the Dr. who sent me back to physical therapy. By this time (end of May)  I was flat on my back, not going to work, not stitching, not living.  I went back to the Dr. who decided I needed an MRI.  After the MRI, which showed a slight bulge of my C4-5,  the Dr. sent me to a neurosurgeon, by this time if I was upright my right arm had to be on the top of my head and my head had to be tilted to the left as that was the only way I got any pain relief at all.  If I tried to use my right arm to do something it would just flop around, I had no control over it.  Sitting in a chair was no longer an option.  My life was at a standstill.  The wheels of medicine spin ever so slowly anymore so it was August by the time I had seen the neurosurgeon, been told I needed a myelogram, actually had the myelogram and received the results.  While I did have a slight bulge at C4-5, it was actually my C6-7 that was bad and pressing on the nerve which was causing all the pain, loss of control and weakness in my arm.  Surgery was scheduled for August 19th and I am now 3+ weeks out from that.  I'm feeling better although that is a double edged sword because you think you are better than you really are so you have a tendency to over-do and then you pay for it!  I have a ton of restrictions yet, haven't tried stitching, stretching or anything like that at this point.  But I am hopeful that soon I will be able to pick up the reins of my life and move forward.

Think that'll do it for this episode.  My time at the computer is very limited still unless I want a massive headache which I gotta tell ya is a big  NO!

Take care till next time!


Sunday, March 2, 2014

A Happy Dance for His Lordship!

Hear ye Hear ye Hear ye!

M'Lord Dan is proud to proclaim a finish!  A first finish!  A fishy first finish!  Gather 'round all ye faithful followers and rejoice, for today marks an important date in the history of the McConnell Clan.   Despite working two jobs, plus catering to his lady's every wish (it's retreat time and his duties are many) His Lordship has proven the naysayers wrong and is pleased to share with you his very first, but certainly not his last stitchy finish!  Without further ado may I present to you His Lordships Ass Bass! Please forgive the un-ironed state, the ladies maid was busy cleaning the chamber pots and I didn't wish to wait till she was available.

M'Lord wishes to thank everyone for all the words of encouragement provided on my previous post.  He was overwhelmed by your kindness.  He also wishes to impart to those who inquired that he regrets to say he will not be starting his own blog.   One writer in the manor is enough.

Next up for his Lordship will be M'Lords Necessities Box and when asked if he was anxious to start he replied, not only anxious but excited.  I do believe he is turning out to be a true stitcher!

Take care till next time!


Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Thank God I can finally tell you The Dan Story!

Hello Ya'll!

That's my leftover accent from Nashville market coming out.  It seems I always tend to pick it up a little bit when I'm there.  The nice gentleman that rode in the elevator with us pointed out that it wasn't him with the accent but us.  When I asked him if our accent sounds as neat to him as his does to us he replied with a resounding no.  I wasn't quite sure how to take that.  Oh well...moving on.  We had a wonderful time in Nashville and brought back lots of beautiful charts, kits and accessories.  We managed to avoid any bad weather which is quite the feat this winter!  Met up with some folks we've known from previous markets, talked to a ton of designers, took a great class on social media and generally speaking enjoyed ourselves immensely!  Can't wait to do it again at St. Charles.  Our market open house is scheduled for tomorrow from 5:30-8:00p.m. should any of you be in the vicinity and wish to come.  We're supposed to get snow tomorrow so that could put a damper on things but I hope not!

I've been trying to figure out what to blog about for the last couple of weeks.  My life has really become a bit boring as of late.  I either have no money to go thrifting or the weather doesn't cooperate so I can't talk about my recent finds since there hasn't been any.  My stitching has been limited to working on the retreat piece which I can't show you until after retreat in May.  I haven't cleaned my house much less done any decorating to speak of so that topic is out.  The other topic I wished to blog about I couldn't do because I was sworn to secrecy by my husband.  But word has slowly been leaking out so he has now given permission for me to tell you all about it.  Or maybe I finally told him I was done keeping the secret, either way I'm outing him.  So here it is...The Dan Story!  I hope you enjoy it!

Chapter 1

Once upon a time in a basement much like any other basement there was a man cave.  Due to the massive Christmas Village that sucked up 98% of this basement, the man cave was teeny tiny.  Tucked away in a corner at the bottom of the stairs, it held only an old big screen TV, a recliner, a bookcase and a recent gift of an aquarium.  Even those few items were more than the space could comfortably hold, but somehow once the aquarium was set up, the owner of this teeny tiny little man cave, we'll call him Dan since that's his name, started spending more and more time in his little hidey hole.  At first, his wife who/whom? we'll refer to as Julie since that's her name, thought nothing of the amount of time Dan was spending in the basement.  After all, he had his new aquarium to get set up and fish to settle in and make comfortable, root beer colored water to change etc...but as time went on and Dan spent every night down there from the minute supper was over until well after she went to bed, Julie started wondering what she'd done to drive her husband away.  Too many Lifetime and Hallmark movies that eat away at his man card?  Too much talking during T.V. shows?  A general aversion to her company? Don't laugh, it could happen.  Generally puzzled and confused Julie decided she needed to get to the bottom of the problem.  So one night after Dan had gone downstairs to his teeny tiny man cave, she got up from her stitching chair and crept down the stairs to the basement.  Ever so quietly she tip toed down each stair, not knowing what she might find when she reached the bottom.  As she stepped down to the landing she got her first glimpse of the object keeping her dearest love so well occupied every night.  Sucking in a breath of surprise she did a double take.  Was she really seeing what she thought she was seeing?  The old eyes are bad but they don't usually hallucinate.  Blinking rapidly to clear her vision she looked again.  Yep, she really was seeing what she thought she was.  Stepping down the last few steps, Dan was so intent on what he was doing he failed to notice her until Julie said nonchalantly, head cocked to one side,  "what are you doing?"  At the sound of her voice Dan's head snapped up and he said "dammit, I wanted to surprise you!"  To which Julie replied "trust me, I'm surprised!"  There he was sitting in the recliner, her old pink pair of readers perched on the end of his nose, a pair of her good stitching scissors sitting on the arm of the chair and her backup Ott light at his side and what  you ask, was he doing?  The man was stitching!  Cross Stitching!  All on his own.

Thank God that's all it was keeping him occupied at night!   Months earlier, Dan had voiced an interest in learning how to stitch.  Julie, thinking it was just a passing thought in his mind that would soon fade did not jump right on that bandwagon.  But she did show him a Fish kit she had picked up off the swap table at retreat and told him that it might be something he could stitch, never thinking he was serious.  Apparently he was and when Julie didn't take the time to get him started he decided to surprise her and do it on his own.  Taking the stitched piece out of his hands and swiping the readers off his nose she set about looking at  his work.  She could tell where his very first stitches were but after that he seemed to have gotten the hang of things and was doing a surprisingly good job of it!  Handing his stitching back to him and praising him for a good job Julie voiced the thought that she couldn't wait to share this exciting bit of news with everyone!  Dan however, quickly nixed that idea saying he wasn't ready.  He wanted to finish the piece and then bring it to stitch group where he could show it off  and have everyone clap to celebrate his first finish.  So Julie kept his secret but eventually it slipped out in a conversation with Mary Ann and then Connie whom she works with.  Still, she tried to contain the secret for as long as possible.

Chapter 2

It was about this time that Julie was set to take part in the Snooty Stitcher Stitch Along.  Everyone in the group was all aflutter with excitement over the bonus charts Barbara Ana had generously designed for those participating in the stitch along.  Scissor Fobs were being made left, right and center with a parrot charm found at Hobby Lobby.  Julie decided she needed to have a parrot fob for her scissors to go along with the chart so Dan accompanied her to their local Hobby Lobby.  Picking up the charm, Julie then began the process of finding just the right beads to go along with it.  Deciding that he too needed a fob for his scissors, Dan searched for an appropriate fish charm and lo and behold he found one!  Granted it was a rainbow trout and not the bass that he was stitching but a fish is a fish so he handed it to Julie and asked her to pick out the appropriate beads to go with it.  Beads chosen they headed to the check out.  Having learned to make beaded fobs at retreat a year or two prior to this, Julie was sure she could make the fobs with no trouble. Menopause however, has robbed her of a good portion of her memory and she couldn't for the life of her remember how to do it and so she asked her stitcher friend Carole who taught the class at retreat if she would help her make the fob for Dan.  This meant letting Carole in on the secret since she would know there was no way Julie would ever want a fish fob!  Carole of course was more than happy to help and so Dan was able to have a special fob to commemorate his first cross stitch project.

Chapter 3

Weeks went by, long hard weeks trying to keep the secret contained and it was starting to wear on Julie.  She knew it was only a matter of time before word got a round.  Almost daily she would have to bite her lip to keep from saying something that would let Dan's secret out into the world.  Other days she'd have to glare at Connie to keep Connie from saying something to another stitcher at stitching Saturdays.  The clock was ticking down on Dan's secret.  As the days passed the Nashville Needlework Market got closer and closer. Conversations turned to what might be brought home from Market and Dan, die hard stitcher that he had become, asked Julie if she was going to bring him back a chart for his stash.  Thinking back on previous markets, Julie didn't think there was going to be much that would interest him but she said she would look around and see what she could see, never thinking the perfect chart would be waiting for her to find.  

Market arrived and Connie, Mary Ann and Julie set off on their adventure.  Having shared Dan's request with them, all three were on the lookout for something that Dan would like, but none felt confident they would find anything.  And as the day progressed it seemed as though they were right.  Each room they entered was scoured for anything that might interest him but always they exited in disappointment.  As they entered the room that housed Milady's Needle they expected more of the same.  Choosing charts for the shop they looked around one last time to see if anything else caught their eyes.  And there it was!  The perfect chart.  Right out there in the open for all to see...M'Lord's Necessities Box!  How perfect was that!

 In order for you to know how perfect it  really was you need to have the back story.  One of the shows that Dan and Julie like to watch  is Downton Abbey.  Shortly after starting to watch the series, Dan decided he wished to be addressed as Your Lordship or M'Lord.  He wouldn't answer unless you addressed him in such a way. He even asked the girls in the office to call him Your Lordship.  So to facilitate  things everyone at one time or another (except for Judy at his work) will refer to him in that manner.  Even Connie when she went to pick up some boxes from Dan's office was requested to call him M'Lord and did so without question cuz you know, she wanted her boxes.  So now you can see why M'Lord's Necessities Box was the perfect chart for him. The designer, Gloria Moore after hearing the back story even autographed the chart for him! We were giddy with delight!

Arriving home from Market, one of the first things Dan asked of Julie was whether she had been successful in finding him something for his stash.  To which she replied maybe but it would have to wait since it was late and she was tired.  His Lordship agreed that it could wait until the morrow.  The next day, knowing that she couldn't just hand the chart over willy nilly, Julie dug out a silver platter and a pair of white gloves.  Laying the chart in the middle of the platter she then donned the white gloves and presented Dan's gift to him with a bow and a very respectful "for you M'Lord".

And thus ends the story of Dan.  He is still to this day going down to the basement every night and stitching till the wee hours of the morning, determined to finish his fish before starting the next project...bwahahahaha!  How long will that last do you think?  Please leave him a comment of encouragement.  I'll share them with him and I'm sure his lordship will appreciate  them all.

I mentioned Snooty above so here is my progress on her/him? I'm behind due to retreat stitching, market and general winter laziness!

Finally, may I present for your viewing pleasure the Sheep Virtues all framed up and ready to hang!  Thank you all for the many wonderful comments you left on my last post!  I appreciated them all!

Have a wonderful evening and take care till next time!



Sunday, January 12, 2014

A mash up finish to share

Oh my word do I feel gross and disgusting!  Dan and I have been in the basement all day cleaning the craft room and getting Christmas boxes put away.  I planned to sort through crap and throw things away and organize other things so I knew it was going to be at least an all day job if not more.  I also knew it was going to be a dusty dirty job since it hadn't been cleaned since Fall Retreat.  So I didn't bother to shower this morning and now I just feel icky!  Soon as I finish this I am hitting the shower!  I don't care that it's 5 o'clock and I'll get up tomorrow morning and shower again.  I'm one of those people that has to shower and wash their hair every day or I just feel disgusting.  So this will be a quick post but I did want to show you another piece I just finished.

When Little House released their Sheep Virtue series I thought about stitching them up separately and making the pillows out of them as shown.  But I also thought it would be cute to do something different.  I wasn't sure what at the time though.  Then last summer Connie and I were going through charts in the shop pulling things out to put in the 50% off bin and I ran across Country Cottage's Sheep in the Meadow chart.  We still had all 4 of our original order of these charts so into the sale bin they went.  And then I had a thought...what if I did a mother/daughter mash up?  I could use the virtues from Little House and the Sheep in the Meadow in the middle!  Well of course it wasn't that easy.  I had to make some changes to Sheep in
the Meadow so it would fit in the center and I am not a lavender lover so I had to change some colors on it too.  But after working on it for a few days I finally got it all to work mathematically, at least I  hoped.  Math is not my strong suit so the only way I was going to know for sure was to stitch it!  But then I encountered some layout issues with the sheep.  By this time I think there were 6 of the 12 charts released and I discovered my original plan to stitch them in the order they came out wasn't going to work for me without some tweaking here and there.  For instance, some of the sheep in the series were whiter than others.    I didn't want 2 blocks in a row to have white sheep so in some cases I had to switch sheep colors.  I also didn't like the blocks with lavender in them so I changed color on those.  I wanted the blue color to be in all 3 rows so I made the bird house in the bottom row blue.  Nothing major but I did have to think some on how it was going to work before I stitched it and then I never knew what the next block was going to look like either so I had to be prepared to rip some stuff out too.  But in the end I think it looks pretty good.

Sheep in the Meadow by Country Cottage

 I stitched this piece on 40 ct. cocoa fabric using DMC floss.  It measures approximately 15 x 9. OH...and those 4 unsold charts I told you about earlier?  After I had my epiphany I pulled them back out of the sale bin and I am happy to say that they are now all sold.  When people saw me stitching this piece and were asking for my changes I had them purchase the original chart first.   It wouldn't be fair to Country Cottage otherwise!

Now it's off to the shower and then stitching time!  I hope you all had a great weekend and thanks to my followers that are still following and commenting!  I appreciate the loyalty!

Take care till next time!


Wednesday, January 8, 2014


Hello!  Twice in one week!  Better right this one down on the calender.  Ya never know when it might happen again!

I mentioned last time that I would show you some of the other things I have stitched on during my blogging hiatus. And so I shall.

 December is the busiest month of the year for me as a custom picture framer.  Anything I might personally get finished between Thanksgiving and Christmas is put on the back burner to await the end of the holiday rush. The same goes for Connie and Mary Ann's finishes.   And thus it was for Plum Street Samplers  Harvest Delivery.  I finished the stitching on December 1st, snapped a couple of pictures and took it off to the shop to await it's turn for framing.  That turn was supposed to happen last week.  Supposed to being the operative words here.  I was all set to play with some corner samples which is one of my favorite things to do and I was pretty excited about having the time to do it.  I took my happy self to the back room, walked over to where I keep the pieces waiting to be stretched, brought the bag down off the shelf, opened it up and... nothing.  It wasn't there.  I looked again.  Still nothing.  I got the ladder and climbed up to get a  better looksee in case it had fallen out and being the short person that I am I couldn't see it.  NOTHING!  At this point I was a bit surprised but not too worried.  In the hustle and bustle perhaps I moved it somewhere else.  I began a systematic search of all the places I might have moved it to.  There aren't that many so it didn't take long.  I still couldn't find it.  And to make matters worse I realized that Connie had finished Plum Street Sampler's Thankful for Thee right about the same time and it was no where to be found either.  At this point I was beginning to worry a bit.  Never in 11 years of framing have I lost any art that has been entrusted to my care.  EVER.  I decided to quit looking for the day thinking that maybe they were staring me in the face and I just wasn't seeing them.  You know how you look in your cupboard for something and you can't find it and then you ask your husband to look and he reaches right in there and pulls it out and acts all smug?  That was the theory  I was going with anyway.  Over the weekend I searched my bags of stitching stash here at the house.  Perhaps I had brought them home to stretch, and didn't remember since that's not something I normally do.  Nothing.   Tuesday I searched the shop once more,  then came home and again looked through my stuff.  Nothing. At that point the only place I hadn't looked was down in my craft room and I couldn't get to it until Dan moved or actually put all the Christmas boxes away and he was teaching a night class so it wasn't going to happen that evening.  Fast forward to this evening.  During dinner I was telling Dan my sad tale of woe regarding my missing pieces and how the only place they could be was in the craft room and how there was no way for me to check there because he'd piled the Christmas shit stuff in front of the doors and I'm not supposed to lift anything heavy right now and and and....lo and behold he moved the boxes to the side and voila!  There they were! (insert fireworks here)  Laid out on my craft table just waiting for me to find them.  Whew!  On the one hand talk about a sense of relief, on the other hand what kind of idiot doesn't remember bringing them home and putting them in the craft room!   I swear I'd forget my head if it wasn't attached.   While I'm forgetting things I guess it was too much to hope that I had forgotten I'd already stretched the 2 pieces but alas I had not which I suppose is for the best since I see that Connie has forgotten a couple of stitches on the "A".  And so without further ado may I present that which was lost and is now found.  Drum roll please....



stitched on 40 ct meadow rue using the called for fibers

And with that I think I shall call it a night and go stitch on something.  Have a great evening!

Take care till next time!


Monday, January 6, 2014

Happy New Year! A brief update

Well hello there and Happy New Year!  I should probably apologize for my prolonged absence but I'm not going to.  I have done it before and promised to do better and have never lived up to that promise so I don't see the point.  I have missed telling you all about things though if that is any consolation.

Now the question is where to start?  Do I back clear up to Fall Retreat and give you the promised blow by blow?  I don't think so.  I doubt you are still interested at this point.  I should at least mention Adam and Marcia's wedding though.   It was a beautiful wedding and the weather couldn't have been more perfect.  The fall color was at it's peak when we were there and it was gorgeous!  Our flights were uneventful if a bit crowded which kept us from sitting with each other.  We all shed a lot of emotional tears that weekend.  Except for the bride.  She managed against all odds to keep a stiff upper lip as she didn't want to ruin her makeup!  They had a beautiful first dance together to the Kip Moore song Hey Pretty Girl and everyone had a wonderful time at the reception, so much so that it was extended for an extra hour.  I enjoyed seeing my kids and their friends all grown up and having a great time together.  It's rare to see and it did this mom's heart good although it is a bit bittersweet as I know it will be a long while if ever before I see it again.
Adam and Marcia honeymooned in Mexico and had a wonderful time just hanging out at the hotel pool.  Married life is agreeing with the 2 of them and they are as happy as a mom could hope for.   The following 3 pics are courtesy of Jennifer Gulley Photography.

Aside from the wedding there really hasn't been a whole lot going on.  Abby and Joe are still dating and having a good time together.  Abby said just the other day that they have been dating for 9 months now. That shocked me a bit as I didn't think it had been that long.  They took a trip to Purdue and took in a football game this fall and not too long ago they traveled to St. Louis for a Penguins hockey game.  Abby is a huge Penguins fan.  I don't get it, she's the girliest girl ever and she loves hockey.  She's currently trying to arrange a trip to someplace warm.  Think she'd mind if I tag along?  Warm sounds good right now!

New Year's Eve 2013
Amy has had the busiest and most stressful semester of college yet.  In addition to working at the ball park this fall, she was working in 2 different research labs, carrying a full load of classes at college, and working on everything involved in applying for graduate school.  And lets not forget she was chosen to present her poster at some big psychology conference in Nashville in November that she had to be prepared for.  It was a lot to handle and I received many panicked phone calls from her over the course of the last few months.  She was sure she wasn't going to get everything done and if she did it wasn't going to be good enough.  Something was going to have to give and she thought it would be her grades.  I did not believe that would be the case though and I was correct.  She earned the best grades ever although I am not sure how they could be better than ever before since her gpa was already 3.9999....her presentation went very well and she has already been offered 2 interviews for grad school.   I was hoping this semester would be a calmer one but then I remembered we have to get through the interviews and then wait to see if she gets any actual offers.  Then and only then will things be less stressful unless of course she isn't offered a spot at Lincoln.  Then my personal stress level will be off the charts!  Note:  As I am adding pictures I realize I do not have anything recent of Amy.  My bad.  I will have to remedy that next time she is home.  If I can catch her when she isn't becoming one with the couch like she did all xmas break.

Christmas was okay this year.  I won't say great as Adam and Marcia were not able to be here this year and when you compare it to last year which was awesome, this year was just...there.  It was good but nothing special.  This year the kids and I gave Dan an aquarium.  He has had a little 5 gal. one at work and he dotes on those guppies of his so I thought he would enjoy having one here at the house.  I was right in thinking he would love it.  But he's having a little problem...can you see what I'm talking about?

Rootbeer colored water is not a normal condition. Apparently his piece of driftwood is releasing tannins into the water and until he can get it cleared up he can't put any fish in it. (that stuffed fish is as close as he has to fish in this aquarium)  So he keeps replacing the water.  By now I think we could have filled up an entire swimming pool.   I keep telling him to remove the darn thing and soak it in a bucket but that would be too easy!  He was also advised to boil it for an hour but we don't have a pot large enough to do that so I suggested we put it in the cooler and poor boiling water over it and let it soak.  Nope.  Silly man just keeps changing the water.  Someday he will have fish in his aquarium, but I don't know when that day will be!

I've been doing some stitching here and there.  I stitched and framed Nimble Netty from Jeanette Douglas.

I've worked on Tuscan Rose



and several other pieces I don't have pictures of right now so I will save them for next time.

I've also worked on the retreat piece but I can't show you that one until May.

And before this morphs into a novel I'm going to call it done and get it posted.  No promises on when I will post again since I will be working on retreat stuff from now until May but I will see what I can do.  Until that happens you all take care and keep on stitching!