Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Retreat!! Warning, long!

Good Morning!

I finally have all the photos from everyone! I have them resized and purtied up, figured out some caption code all by myself and now I'm ready to post!

Let me begin by saying this was my first retreat. Not even really a retreat, more like a stitching weekend getaway. There were no door prizes, there was no cross stitch shopping, and there were no classes offered. Just stitching with friends and a bit of regular shopping thrown in just because. And I had a great time!! I think everyone else did too.

Our weekend started on Friday afternoon with most of the stitcher's arriving around 3 p.m. Sleeping accommodations were then chosen based on people's individual needs and preferences. Once that was taken care of the serious business of stitching began. (click on pics to enlarge them and hover mouse over pic for captions)

I think everyone was in bed by midnight that night but they were at it again bright and early Saturday morning!

After breakfast Saturday morning, 7 of us headed out for a bit of retail therapy! Merrilyn and Mary, dedicated stitcher's that they are, stayed behind. This would explain why they actually came close or did finish a project! We drove 10 miles down the road from Stuart to a town called Atkinson. If you are ever driving hwy 20 in Nebraska and you go through Atkinson, Stop!! It may not look like much but it has one of the best gift shops I've ever been to. It's a large 2 story building full of every kind of gift item you can imagine and Christmas all year round! Everyone had a great time and some of us even bought some things. I would be included in the buying category. Connie bought some gifts also but she had more fun just ringing the bell on the front counter. Not because she needed help, okay yes, she needs help but she isn't going to get the help she needs by ringing the bell. No Connie was ringing the bell because it was there. And she could. So she did. Look out those of you who are heading to the PALS convention, Hurricane Connie is headed your way!

When everyone was finished at the gift store, we decided to head on down the street to the 5 & dime store. Tucked inside this store is an old fashioned soda fountain. Not too many of those still in existence so I try to go whenever I'm in town.

The five and dime is a wonderful little store. They have a bit of everything crammed in this place. And I mean everything! You remember Connie the bell ringer from above. This was her kind of place, let me tell ya. It's like taking a 2 year old into a candy store. Ya never know what they will find that they have to have.
Like this for example: (make sure you click the pic to enlarge)

or this

and then she made poor Mr. Goeke hold her frog for her.....

I believe she bought 3 yards of the fabric so she could wrap herself up in the all the hunky cowboys and I'm pretty sure the frog came home with her too!

BUT! One of the best reasons for going to Goeke's is......

Candy Cigarettes! You remember them don't you. Come's in a box, looks like cigarettes complete with red tip? Well, they aren't called cigarettes anymore, now they're candy sticks, there isn't any red tip unless you color it with your red lipstick but the taste is the same and it's the only place I know of to buy them so I usually clean them out when we visit. This trip I couldn't buy them out. I had to share with the rest of the group. You wouldn't believe how many candy cigarette addicts there are out there! At first it was just Deb and I hanging around outside.

But soon we were joined by others of our kind.

We were just too cool weren't we? At least I thought so until they all turned to me and said, you never really smoked did you? Dang, and here I thought my candy cigarette technique was so good!!

At last it was time to head back to Stuart, we had caused enough of a stir in Atkinson for one day and I'm pretty sure they were happy to see the last of us! But that Connie had to get in one last laugh. Leave it to her to spot a sign in a local window and turn something innocent into something not so innocent.

We arrived back at the Sister's House to find it empty of our 2 stay behinds, figuring they had gone out to lunch we quickly settled in for an afternoon of stitching and laughter. Except for our youngest stitcher Stacy. Stacy is going to school and she had homework to do. So being a good student she went out to the sunporch and finished up what she hadn't get done on the car ride to Stuart the day before.

Soon we were joined by our missing stitchers and everyone got back to the business at hand.

Here are some of the projects being worked on...

We took a break from stitching later in the afternoon and walked over to the Catholic Church to have a look at the beautiful windows and then we sat outside on the deck for a bit as it was such a nice day. Stacy went one further and got a blanket and laid out on the lawn. We had sandwiches for supper that night and later on my Aunt Edith stopped in to visit with us. Can ya tell we're related?

Everyone drifted off to bed at different times Saturday night but Sunday morning, we were up early and stitching away. Breakfast was eaten, more stitching was done and finally it was time to pack up and head home.

Stacy and I were the last to leave so I checked all the rooms for left behind items. Didn't see anything so we closed up the house and headed on down the road. Everything was just fine until I dropped Stacy off at her house. For some reason, and I don't know what that reason is, I suddenly remembered I had left my pillow draped over a chair in the living room of the Sister's house. My pillow that I can't sleep without. You do not want to know the words I used at that point. But the story ends happily, my Aunt was able to get my pillow and she overnighted it to me so I only had to sleep without it for 2 nights! :)

That finishes our Stuart Adventure Story. I hope you enjoyed as much as we did! I think we should do it again next year. Only maybe we could all arrive Thursday evening so we had all day Friday for stitching instead of traveling on Friday. It's not a short drive so more stitching time would be nice. I might actually get something accomplished then! NOT! World's slowest stitcher here!

Thanks for stopping by and hanging in there. It's a long post! Comments are always welcome and appreciated! Have a great day everyone!!

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

A start and a finish


Hey, I am so sorry for ignoring my blog for the last week. It's been a busy one and I just haven't had any time. I'm still working on the pictures from retreat, trying to get pictures from another gal to add to the ones I took. I should have them in my hot little hands this afternoon and then I can get them ready and post but I didn't want to leave ya'll hanging for another day so I will show you what I started while at retreat. I should have stitched on one of my wip's but everyone voted and said I should start this one since it is for fall. Not too much done on it though because I needed to finish another project but I will talk about that one later....

My new start is from an old issue of For The Love Of Cross Stitch, November 1994 to be exact. I have always wanted to stitch it and just haven't gotten around to it. When I was going through all my stuff to organize the craft room I ran across it again and said to myself, I really need to stitch this. Then myself answered back "Well what the heck ya waiting for? " That's all it took. No arm twisting involved whatsoever! My plan for this new piece is to put it on top of my hutch in the kitchen in the fall. Probably not this fall at the rate I'm going though. Usually this picture sits on top of the hutch:

This is the new project:

Just the stitching:

I think it will work just fine for up there in the fall. I'll have to find one similar with a Christmas theme next!

The other project I stitched on while at retreat has been in the works for about a year now. A friend of mine saw a chart I designed for our stitching group and wanted to know if I could design her family crest from a picture and then stitch it for her. I told her I would give it a shot but wasn't going to make any promises. She said she would like to have it for a gift for her father this year for Christmas. Seeing as how it's getting close to the holidays, I thought perhaps I oughta get 'er done. I finished it up last night and I think it turned out pretty good. Debi seems to be pleased with it anyway and I guess that's what counts!

Oh! I ordered a couple of new things this week. I don't know why I keep doing that! I have plenty to work on and no hope of ever finishing most of it. It's a sickness I tell ya. A sickness.

I had Last Saturday Stitching at my house this past Saturday. It was fun and I think most had a good time. I'm a little torqued at myself though. I dumped a crock pot of weenies and barbeque sauce all over the carpet. I now have a nice pink stain on my floor down there. Stupid of me.

Amy, Dan and I traveled to Des Moines last Friday for a college visit. This was our first college visit ever. I have 2 older kids but they went to school here in town. Amy isn't planning on doing that. She has worked very hard to have the grades to win large scholarships so she can go where ever she wants to. We toured Drake University. She wants to go into journalism, specifically magazines. Meredith publishing is in Des Moines so they have a wonderful program for magazine journalism. She fell in love with the campus and was impressed with everything. That's just fine and dandy in my book except for the fact that a year there is in the neighborhood of $33,000.00! That's a lot of scholarship!! Did I mention I have recently lost my job? Not sure how this will work out, I hate that she might not get to go where she wants after all her hard work. But maybe, with a lot of prayer and tons of applications for scholarships it will work out. I hope so.

And that folks is about all I have today. Thank you all so much for stopping by and leaving comments. I'm so happy that I have inspired people with my craft room. Now I just need to find the time to go down there and enjoy it!

Have a great day! See ya soon!