Thursday, July 23, 2009

Road Trip, Stash and a wip update

Don't ya just love spur of the moment road trips? Tuesday afternoon Mary Ann (my boss and friend) decided that we needed to take a break and have some fun. We have been somewhat frustrated with trying to get fabric in the shop. Seems everything we order is backordered! So she looks at me and says, why don't you give Picture This Plus (PTP) a call and see if they have enough stock on hand to make the 4 hour drive worth our while. I called Marilyn from PTP and she said come on down so Wednesday morning, Mary Ann and I hit the road for Abilene Kansas! We had such a good time! I have never been to Kansas. I don't get out of Nebraska much so this was a nice adventure for me! I thought there wouldn't be much to see, as I have always pictured Kansas as a flat and somewhat barren state, and maybe some of it is, but the parts we drove through were quite pretty! One town we went through called Marysville was very quaint and I would have enjoyed puttering around but we didn't have the time this trip. I saw quite a few beautiful things on our way down. This view for instance was gorgeous!

I'm a little confused though by the definition of creek. When I hear the word creek, I picture small little running bodies of water that you can almost jump over or at the very least wade across easily. Places where you catch minnows and things like that. That is the kind of creek I'm familiar with. That's the kind I played in as a child. This is the state of Kansas' idea of a creek.

Seriously. Are they kidding me?? That's a creek?? Looks more like a big ass river to me. And this wasn't the only one we saw. There were 2 of them. Then we'd come across what they call a river there and I'd be like that's a river? I can spit across it. That can't be a river. I think someone has been driving around and switching up the signs in Kansas. Deliberately. And with malice aforethought! Just trying to confuse this almost 50 year old woman. And it worked!

I also saw this cute, old, obviously not lived in anymore house. For some reason it called my name. So I had to take a picture of it. Do you know how hard it is to get decent pictures from a moving car? I'm surprised they turned out as good as they did!

We got into Abilene at about 11:30. The plan was to do our shopping and eat some lunch, get back in the car and head home so I could make my hair appointment at 6:30. I should have known better. I'd show you a picture of the outside of PTP but I was so excited to get inside I completely forgot to take one. It was like walking into heaven. Not only is there a cross stitch store, they have a book store too. And it was awesome! Hence the excitement. We got to meet both Marilyn and Sherry while we were there. Marilyn showed us the back room where the magic of dying the fabric occurs. Way cool! We got to see all the beautiful colors of fabric in person which I have to admit made me salivate. They have tons of stitched models to look at and all kinds of specialty thread too. Well worth the 4 hours in a car one way. We picked the ladies brains a bit and they were very happy to allow us to do so. We also got to see some upcoming secret things but my lips are sealed. I'm not saying a word. No siree.

Here is a picture I had to beg and ask pretty please to get. Neither Mary Ann or Marilyn wanted to have their picture taken but I bullied begged and batted my baby blues until they agreed, reluctantly but they did agree.

Did I mention they dye their own fabric here? Beautiful fabric. Lots of beautiful
fabric. Sadly, my eyes were so much bigger than our pocket book. We still managed to come home with quite a few different colors, but I left twice this amount on the table. Mary Ann just kept saying, we can come back again Julie. I kept saying, I know that but I want it all now! (said with a definite whine in my voice) Our stash....

By the time I had whittled my wants down to a manageable pile it was already almost 1:30. We still had to eat lunch. Which we did, right there in the store as they have a cafe upstairs in the bookstore. Finally we had to pack up our purchases and head for home. Almost. Marilyn had suggested we stop at another shop in town. The name escapes me at the moment, I think it had the word creek in it, but it's a candle and decor store. Very nice place and I wish we had had more time to spend there. It was after 3:00 before we left town and I had no hope of making my appointment. See these gray hairs on the top of my head? Get used to them, they will be around a while longer now.

We motored on down the road and were making pretty good time until......

It was a loooong train. I think the engineer was a bit worried about my intentions when I took out my camera. I saw him watching me carefully. Like maybe I was pulling out a rifle or something. I waved at him and he eventually waved back. As a child I used to wait anxiously for the caboose to go by. As an adult, I wait for the graffiti go by.

Just 2 examples of the many many cars full of grafitti. I'd rather see a caboose.

One other sight we saw on our adventure was this:

Doesn't take much to entertain me does it? I suppose that is kind of pathetic if I stop to think about it but I prefer to take pleasure in the simple things. I'm not disappointed then. We got home about 7:30. Not bad but still a 12 hour day. I was tired. So I didn't do any stitching. But I still have progress to show you on my Live, Laugh, Love piece. See! Isn't it pretty? I'm still loving this piece.

Well, that's all folks. Thanks so much for going to Kansas with me! Can you imagine how long this would be if I went to Hawaii?? I don't even want to think about it!

Have a nice night everyone! See ya next time!

Monday, July 20, 2009

I Did a Bad Bad Thing....

Do you remember my saying on the last post that I was trying not to start anything new? That I wanted to get a bit farther on the pieces I was already working on?? Ummmmm, yeah. I lied. I'm not even terribly sorry for doing it. And to top that off, it's a chart I didn't even have on my immediate to do list. But I'm loving it! It's stitching up really fast. I started it Saturday night, stitched some off and on Sunday and some today. Now before I show you the picture I do have another confession to make. I kinda messed up on it. I was reading the directions where it said use one strand of floss over 2 threads and the first time I read it I thought it said one strand over one thread. Then I thought, that can't be right so I went back and read it again and sure enough I had read it wrong. But and there is always a but....somewhere between my reading the correct directions and my cutting the fabric and sitting down to stitch my brain farted and backed itself up to the point where I had read the directions wrong. So I'm happily stitching away today on my teeny tiny little piece when my brain must have farted again and suddenly it came back to me and I realized I was stitching the dang thing over one instead of the over 2 it was supposed to be. I won't repeat what I said at that point, it wasn't nice. Now, the anal part of me wanted to immediately rip it all out and start again but the sane part of me said are you freaking kidding me?? You.will.not. After some mental arguing, the sane side won out and I am leaving it as a teeny tiny delicate little picture that will fit on my bookcase in the library. I don't have the wall space for another picture anyway. Right? (You all nod your heads in agreement here.) There, I feel better now that you all agree it's the right thing to do. So without further ado.....

I'm stitching this miniature beauty on 35 count Straw Weeks linen and using silk threads from Carries. The colors I chose are Rusty Nail, Soot and Plankton.

In other news, Dan and I made some progress on the room in the basement. The moldings and doors are all painted and we are fixing to start painting the walls probably tomorrow night. After that we have to rip up the old floor and lay the new. I'm getting excited about it.

Amy left for journalism camp today in Lincoln. She will be gone till Thursday. Before she left she asked me what her father and I would do without her here and I told her we would probably have wild monkey sex on the living room floor every night. Her face was priceless! Wish I had had my camera at that moment!

I better wrap this up. Dan and I are alone and....just kidding! Our neighbor across the street is a fairly recent widow and a couple times a week Dan and I go over there to watch TV with her. Tonight is The Closer night.

Have a nice evening everyone! Thanks for stopping by and commenting!