Wednesday, December 29, 2010

It's always something around here!

Merry Belated Christmas and Happy New Year Everyone!

I have the day off today and plan to do absolutely nothing that looks, sounds, smells or otherwise resembles work! I did go to P.T early this morning but that is the extent of my planned plans for the day. Amy asked if I wanted to watch a movie with her and I said I don't know, right now I'm trying to write my blog cuz that's what I feel like doing. She gave me a strange look until I explained that I was taking a me day. Selfish? You bet, but dang it feels good!

So how was everyone's Christmas? Ours was good overall. The week leading up to Christmas wasn't the greatest. Ya know how bad things come in 3's? Well, I'm hoping we are done now. First the toilet in the powder room on the main floor sprung a leak and leaked water all over which ruined the ceiling in the basement, specifically in my craft room. It also ruined the oak parquet flooring in the bathroom. And to top it off, it's still not working right. Dan is not a plumber. I don't consider having to take the lid off the tank and lifting up the black doo hickey in order to make it flush fixed. Not in any sense of the word.

After the toilet incident we move on to the garage door. Just had it installed this summer. New door, new opener. Which quit working for some strange reason and guess what? Dan is not an electrician either.

And finally on Thursday morning, Christmas Eve, Eve I went out to my car to go to P.T. before work and turned the key to start the engine only to have nothing happen. N.O.T.H.I.N.G. The lights and radio would come on but not a peep from the engine. No click, no grind, just dead silence. I called next door to our neighbor to see if he could give me a jump and he said sure so we get the cables hooked up and...Nothing. Thanked Steve nicely, went in the house and called Dan. Explained the situation and after he ran down a list of things for me to try, he agreed to call a tow truck and get it to the dealer. I called and canceled my P.T. appt. and then begged Steve the neighbor for a ride to work. Later that afternoon I received a call from Hyundai. They located the problem. And.....I said. Well, you aren't going to believe this ma'am but we found a rabbit inside your car. It ate your wiring. Scared my mechanic half to death, we took video to prove it to you. Actually sir, I'm not surprised at all because this is the second freaking time a rabbit has eaten my wiring!!! Why it eats my car and not Dans is a mystery to me. They are both sitting in the driveway, side by side. But it always seems as though my car is tastier to the little buggers! Set me back $200.00 and I must admit, I'm not feeling the love for Thumper right now. (click the pic to enlarge and read)

We managed to top the week off with a trip to the ER on Christmas day. Our dear darling adorable daughter Abby (said with much sarcasm) had traveled to her boyfriends parents house on Christmas Eve. They stayed the night there and then he brought her home Christmas morning. She arrived home unable to breathe. Had apparently stayed up all night because she thought she was going to die and refused to go to the hospital when the boyfriend suggested it. Her lips and fingers were blue, the rest of her was the color of skim milk. She couldn't talk without panting. And what do you think she said when I told her we were going to the ER? Yep, her response was...I don't need to go. I'm fine. I finally had to threaten her with staying home from Grandmas if she didn't go and she finally caved. But first she had to shower and clean herself up and when she was doing that she almost passed out so by the time we got to the ER she was starting to think that maybe it was a good idea. 2.5 hours later, oxygen, a breathing treatment, a shot in the butt of steroids, several puffs on her inhaler and 3 prescriptions later, we came home to overdone prime rib, rock hard baked potatoes and dried out dinner rolls. But she was still alive and that was all I really cared about. The boyfriend and I will be having a chat about ignoring Abby and listening to his gut where her health is concerned since she is her own worst enemy.

Way back before Christmas I won a giveaway from Meari of Meari's Musings and I haven't had the opportunity to say thank you publicly and to show what I won. So Thanks Meari! I love everything! Showing all the goodies is perhaps a bit harder. In all the hustle and bustle of the season, I put everything in a "safe" place where I would remember where it was and now I can't remember where that "safe" place is. But it has company because I also can't remember where I put Amy's Christmas Ornament or the gift for my sister in law. It's all here, just not HERE if you know what I mean. I can show you the needle book though as I put that with the other 2 smalls I have. Isn't it cute? It's my very first needle book! Thanks again Meari!

Started a new stitchy project. I haven't had much time to stitch but here is my progress so far on Jenny Bean's Friendship Sampler. I'm stitching it on 40 ct Sandcastle (I think that's it's name) over 2 with one thread. Once again I am enjoying the process and can't wait to see it all finished!

We had a first at work yesterday. Our first male stitcher! He is working on some hardanger ornaments and came in for some fabric. He ended up leaving with Blackberry Lanes Journey to Bethlehem, the new pendants in the same theme and The Three Wise Men along with his hardanger fabric. He said his wife would kill him if she knew so he wasn't going to tell her. Guess we women aren't the only ones who hide our stash from our spouses!

So I have probably bored you all to the point of why do I read this blog anyway so I will call it good. Thanks everyone for hanging in there with me and for leaving me wonderful comments and I hope the new year brings everyone nothing but great things like toilets that flush themselves, garage doors that open and close and rabbits that prefer carrots to car wiring!

Take care till next time!


Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Jenny Bean Finish and other stuff of importance? Maybe?

I finally have a few minutes to sit down and say hello! I hope everyone is doing well and that most are ready for the holidays! I'm a long way from being ready but closer than I was a week ago at this time. As usual, life has been one long series of busy, busy and more busy! Work is slowing down a bit now, I think I only have 3 more orders due for Christmas, then a football jersey, and a half dozen cross stitch pieces to frame after that. Not bad considering the 22 I had at one point! I finished framing this piece for Connie (a friend) yesterday. She's giving it as a gift this Christmas.

And speaking of finishes....I put the final stitches in Jenny Bean's Christmas late last night. What a fun stitch this was! I think I only changed 2 things on it. One was the one tree color and the other was the letter B. Just didn't like how it was charted.
A friend asked me today what I was going to work on next and I was a bit stumped for a minute or two. Then I remembered Jenny Beans Friendship Sampler. I'll kit that one up tomorrow and get a start on it. I was tempted though to start LHN's The North Wind. Of course if Journey to Bethlehem was in house right now I would most likely start that one. Can't wait to see it come alive as I stitch it!

Back to the busy part of this post, some of you might remember that my husband and I have a rather large Christmas Village. (click here to view last years village) Every year we try to host an open house so that those who are interested can see what changes have occurred in the village. This year we added a light industrial park. We cut it really close and finished the village on Friday. Here's a little peak at some of the new section.

Saturday was the open house. Friday morning I still needed to finish decorating, clean the entire house go grocery shopping and make food. Needless to say I was a bit busy and matters were not helped by my having to wear an orthopedic boot. I was prescribed one 2 weeks ago today due to chronic achilles tendonitis and it wasn't going well. It's awkward, heavy and because you are higher on one side than the other it makes your back and other hip hurt. In other words it was hampering my ability to get things done which caused me to be so far behind. Anyway, Saturday morning dawned cold, snowy and with winds blowing upwards of 50 miles/hour. I got to work on the cleaning all the while keeping one eye on the weather and finally, after Dan came home from getting groceries so I could start making the food for the open house we decided it was stupid to risk people coming out in the weather and we canceled the open house. I'm not gonna lie, it was a huge relief to me. I really just wasn't ready. By this time my ankle was a mess so the boot came off, I finished the cleaning, froze the groceries and re-issued invites for this Saturday. Once I have the open house behind me I will be able to concentrate on buying Christmas presents. I've started but am far from being done.

Monday I called the Dr. and asked if the boot was supposed to make things worse before it makes things better and she said no. She discontinued the boot and I am now in physical therapy for 6 weeks. I hope it helps because the only other option is surgery and I am just not jiggy with that!

Amy comes home tonight for the Christmas break. Dan is picking her up as I type this. Adam will be home on the 23rd. He received a promotion at work and they laid out their future plans for him. It's looking like D.C. will be his new home some time next year but it's all subject to change. Abby has been having issues with extremely dry skin and was starting to look like a lizard. The Dr. put her on some special cream which seems to be doing the trick. She and boyfriend Jordan have been getting along nicely, he seems to be treating her well so far so I will continue to let him breathe for now. :) Kidding! School is going well for her and she will start her final rotation after the new year.

And that friends is about it for this post. At some point I will take pictures of this years village and I'll let ya know when that happens. In the meantime, here's a pic of our tree, Merry Christmas!

Take care till next time,


Saturday, November 27, 2010

Are you happy now?

First let me say I am dedicating this blog post to all the stitchers from our stitching group that dinged me unmercifully all day today. If I heard it once, I heard it a dozen or more times...When are you going to update the blog. Jenny Bean has been done forever! You all know who you are and I hope this makes you happy because God knows I live to make you ladies happy! NOT! LOL!!!

Second, let me apologize to my followers for being absent for so long. Life has a way of taking over and the 21 framing jobs that came in at once certainly took over! I have never in 8 years of framing had 21 jobs at one time and while I am in no way complaining about the workload, it did make it difficult to find the time for blogging. Or cleaning, Or cooking. Add in all the other things going on like surgeries, Dr. appt's., Adam being home, Amy being home, Thanksgiving etc. and of course this time of year there is always the Christmas village to work on before the open house so given all that perhaps you will forgive me. I'll try hard not to let so much time pass between posts.

As my fellow LSS stitcher's pointed out to me today, Jenny Bean Halloween has been finished for quite some time. I changed quite a few of the colors in this as I just wasn't liking the substitutes for the original limited edition thread pack and I'm very pleased with the result. To finish it off I've chosen a sweet little black frame with a raised leaf design on it but the framing will be a while as it has to take a back seat to customer orders, of which I still have 12 in the queue. For now I will just post the unframed finish.

After finishing JB Halloween, I moved on to Jenny Bean's Christmas. I am loving the whole Jenny Bean thing, can you tell?! I'm stitching her on 40 count R & R Americana Blend fabric with the called for fibers. Love this fabric color with the colors of the floss. My picture doesn't show the true color of it, although it's close.

Speaking of true color, have you all seen the new LHN chart called the North Wind? I adore this chart so as soon as the fabric information was released we hopped on the phone and called Lakeside Linens to order the called for Vintage Tundra. It arrived today and looks nothing like the picture. The picture shows a blue fabric and the fabric itself has more green to it than pictured. I have to say I was a bit disappointed, the fabric is beautiful but just not what it looks like in the picture. Just wanted to warn you in case you are planning to stitch this cutie and want it to look like the actual picture.

Finally, I also started the chart called Sweeping Snowflakes. It's by With thy Needle & Thread. Such a cute idea don't ya think?

There is a drawback to this chart though. I hate stitching with white floss. It just never looks good to me and on top of that I get bored stitching so much of it at one time. Needless to say, I am not making a whole lotta progress on it. But here's what I have done so far.

And with that I am going to call it a night. I didn't sleep well last night as I was thinking all night long about what in the world I was going to bring for a snack today at LSS. I just couldn't come up with anything that sounded good. I think maybe because we've had so much food around the house the last few days. Anyway, I'm tired, cold and plan to go crawl under a blanket and veg a bit. Tomorrow will be a very busy day of decorating the house for the Holidays.

Have a wonderful rest of the weekend everyone and take care till next time!


Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Jenny Bean update!

It's a very windy Wednesday here in the heartland! Lucky for me it's my day off so I don't have to be out in it. I have been keeping myself busy cleaning the house, doing a bit of laundry, the oven is in the middle of a cleaning cycle, the piano man has been here to tune the piano and I made an appt. to have the furnace serviced for winter. A productive day so far but it's all about to come to a screeching halt because when I finish this post I am plopping my behind in a chair and stitching for a while. Later on I'll have to address the supper issue and then I took some frozen zucchini out so I will have to make some zucchini bread too but then I will sit back down and stitch some more!

I want to say Welcome to my new followers! Thanks so much for stopping in and more thanks for commenting if you did. I do appreciate all of my followers and all my comments!

Diane asked me if there was a secret to getting the lint out of a framing package. I don't know if I would call it a secret but I use compressed air and prayer. Toss in a few swear words and that pretty much sums up what I do. I am very picky about lint in my finished framing so depending on the project, I will close it and open it umpteen times until there isn't any left. A royal pain but I figure people are paying good money to have something professionally framed and they deserve the absolute best job I can do. Suede mats are sometimes the exception to that rule. If you only have one teeny tiny speck inside a framing package, and you cannot see it from regular viewing distance it is sometimes better to leave that one speck in there rather than opening the package back up and risking 5 more specks getting in. Love the look of suede, hate that dust and lint love it too!

Not much new going on around here. Abby and the new boyfriend are getting along well. School is going well and work is also going well so we have no complaints there. She's gearing up for Halloween parties this weekend. I had to help her into her peacock costume to make sure it fits okay and I was very pleased to see that all the important body parts are nicely covered. I was a bit concerned judging from the pictures online but it's all good! I'll try to get pictures on Saturday. She's having her makeup done at the M.A.C. counter at the mall. I wouldn't spend the money on that but it will be interesting to see what they do.

Adam is looking forward to coming home in November. He told me last week that his mouth waters every time he thinks about coming home. He got 4 inches of snow in Utah last night. He can keep it! One of his best friends just got engaged and Adam is feeling slightly envious. The boy really wants a girlfriend but I just don't know how that's gonna work when he's working 15 hour days and won't be staying in one place for very long.

Amy called late last week to announce that her senior high school yearbook, of which she was the editor, won the Cornhusker award, which is the highest award a year book can win in the state of Nebraska. She was on cloud 9. She and her staff put a lot of time and effort into that book so I am thrilled that others appreciated all of their hard work. It will hopefully be entered into the National competition but there is a new Journalism teacher at the High School this year and word on the street is, she's not quite with the program. I hope that is incorrect information.

Dan has been busy making Sampler Roundy bases for the shop. I can always count on him to make rough pieces of wood look and feel amazing! He took those cheap pieces of pine, sanded them completely smooth, had me paint them and then sanded some more to distress them a bit and smooth any roughness from the painting and then he applied a lovely coat of paste wax over the top. Awesome job honey! Thanks! See that yummy soft sheen?

Dan has also been working on a table that my girlfriend brought over to be repaired. He's almost finished with it, hopefully by the weekend he says. Wish I had taken a before shot of it but I didn't.

Had to take the baby dog to the vet this week. she was digging at her ear and it was all red and inflamed. We caught it early so she's feeling all better now. Can you tell?

Gracie says, "I would play but my hair is too long and I can't see anything! Please make me an appointment with Ashley."

I have mostly been stitching on Jenny Bean. I am enjoying this piece a lot. Here's my progress as of last night.

Other projects are calling my name but I am trying to stay focused. I'm a bit bummed out about my Chatelaine piece. I discovered a hole in the fabric, a fairly sizable hole, right smack dab in the middle. I have no idea where the hole came from and I haven't decided what I'm going to do about it yet. I have never had that happen to me before. Chaps my behind, I tell ya!!

Last Saturday Stitch is this coming Saturday. We are planning to have our 2nd annual freebie exchange for Christmas this year. We did it last year and everyone had a great time, it didn't cost much as most of us have freebies in our stash and pieces of fabric and enough floss to kit it all up for next to nothing, so we'll be discussing the best time to have the exchange. MaryAnn has removed the gag order regarding a raffle we will be having at spring retreat so I get to announce that also. Should be a great time! Stop in if you are in the area!

Well my stitching is calling my name so I am gonna go get comfortable and relax for a while. Hope you are all having a great week. Thanks for stopping by and commenting!

Take care till next time!


Saturday, October 16, 2010

Progress, a day I want to forget and football

It's Saturday evening and the last I heard the Huskers were losing against Texas....again. I'm not what you'd call a football fan. My favorite things to do regarding football are...mocking the announcers and rooting for the Cowboys because my husband hates them. Aside from those 2 things, I really could care less about the sport. I don't understand it, and believe me I have had many boyfriends and even 1 husband try to explain it to me. I just don't get it. Why a bunch of grown men would enjoy running after a pigskin ball, smashing anything that gets in their way while running, only to catch the ball and then have a bunch of the men pile on top of him because they didn't catch the ball and apparently they're not happy about it, is just beyond my comprehension. It ranks right up there with golf. If I want to take a walk, I certainly don't need to hit a little white ball 200 yards thataway so I can walk to where I think it might have gone only to find out that nope it's not where I thought it was. I can just step out the front door and go anywhere my little heart desires. No balls in sight! But, I seem to be in the minority so here's my token cheer, Go Huskers! Beat Texas! Football sucks, I want a Lexus!!

Hey don't judge me, not much rhymes with Texas.

We had stitching at the shop today. Had a good time, met some new stitcher's , talked, laughed and ate. All in all a great day! Now I need to get up from the computer and start cleaning. My in-laws are coming down in the morning early so they can leave early. We have my nieces birthday party at 3 at my sister's house. By the time we get home from there my weekend will be over and I haven't managed to recover from the day from hell I had on Friday.

Being sick for 2 weeks put me slightly behind where the framing was concerned. I had my day all planned out, what needed to get done and what could wait. The first thing that needed to get done was a Hole in One Golf layout. The customer had emailed us the day before and I had told him it would be finished by the next day. I had most of it done already, just needed to add the newspaper pieces that told about his hole in one. Everything was going just fine, I was cutting out the newspaper articles I needed for the layout when the phone rang. Now the smart thing to do would have been to step away from the cutter and concentrate on the phone call. But I never claimed to be smart. No I kept cutting while I answered the phone and when the voice identified himself and asked how I was coming on his jersey and would he be able to pick it up that afternoon as his dinner party was that night and he had a big empty spot on his wall....I cut the article in the wrong spot! Right across the man's name as a matter of fact. The man that had a hole in one. You see, jersey's are oversized and require lots of time and concentration and most times 2 people to get them finished. Add to that I had no idea the man needed his jersey finished by a certain date as it wasn't noted on the work order and it came in while I was sick. So instead of concentrating on what I was cutting I was madly trying to figure out whether I was going to be able to do the jersey and have it done by 5, MaryAnn was gone but Connie was there so if I needed 2 people to help hold the frame Connie could handle that, if the golf thing went smoothly I might just be able to pull it off and that was all it took to cause a major disaster! I tried taping the article but that just wasn't going to work. It just didn't pass the Julie test. So then I called the Omaha World Herald to see if I could get a copy of the paper from a month ago. They said sure, come on down. I called my husband to see if he could run downtown to get it. He said he could so I thought great, I'll start the jersey while I'm waiting for Dan. So far so good. Then the phone rang again. Would you believe that of all the issues of the newspaper they have, that particular days newspaper was completely sold out!!!!! They had it on microfiche but it wouldn't look like the paper. My panic mode really kicked in then. I started calling local libraries and was told time and time again that they no longer had that issue. I finally located a library that still had it about a half hour later. Connie volunteered to go make a photo copy of it as they said we couldn't have the actual paper. This was a problem. We needed it to look like the rest of the paper in the collage. So I got on the phone again and called the Papillion paper to see if we could get some newsprint. The lady there was very helpful and said she'd be happy to let us have an end roll. Great! It's just up the road so Connie could run there, get the newsprint and then go halfway across town to the Millard Library and get a copy. Except our local paper apparently moved their offices when I wasn't looking and instead of being just up the street, they were now in Bellevue. The opposite direction from Millard. Nothing is easy. Connie set out on her mission and I went back to the jersey. Things were going well, Connie came back with the newsprint thinking we should cut some pieces to fit in the copier since the newsprint came on a big roll. She left for the library and I continued working on the jersey. Then the phone rang again. It was Connie. The copier wouldn't work with the newsprint. It kept jamming the printer. I'm hearing her words and in my mind I'm thinking Oh shit. I'm toast. After a pause Connie says in this sweet soft voice, so they let me have the paper instead. I'm still stuck on printers and jams so it took me a minute to process what she said and then I wanted to kill her for causing me a heart attack! I think I asked if she was shitting me because I just couldn't believe they would give it to her but it turns out that branch was her local library and they knew her and took pity on her. Said if the paper just happened to disappear while their backs were turned they wouldn't say anything. So Connie arrives back at the shop with the paper, I finish the golf layout, then take it apart because there was a piece of lint in it, put it back together and take it apart again several more times to get lint out and finally it passes the Julie test and I get it done. It's now about 3:30. The jersey is to the point where I need to get it in the frame, make sure it looks good, no wrinkles, nothing touching the glass, no lint, take it apart and put it back together several times doing all that and finally at about 4:45 it's done. The owner shows up we take care of business, he has another jersey and several photographs he wants to do next so we take care of that, he leaves and I am finally able to relax a bit. I go in the back room to clean up the mess I made that day so the food can be put on my work table for Saturday stitching and as I am cleaning up I find......wait for it.......the autographed football card that's supposed to be attached to the front of the jersey I just sent home. I wanted to cry at that point. And I won't repeat the word that came out of my mouth over and over but it wasn't nice. At this point there was nothing I could do about it. I'll just have to call him Monday(if I don't hear from him before then) and tell him to bring the dang thing back in and I'll attach the card but my stomach is now in knots over the whole thing. I hate when I mess up.

I've been stitching some in the evenings. Here's Jenny Bean:

I've had to mess with the colors some to make myself happy but I'm thinking I finally have it figured out.

My Chatelaine is also coming along nicely:

Well, this isn't getting the cleaning done, I've enjoyed it a whole lot more though but I supposed I best get my rear in gear and get something done. I made Cheeseburger soup for stitching today and totally trashed my kitchen in the process so it's going to take some time to put it to rights.

I hope everyone is enjoying their weekend.

Take care till next time!


UPDATE: The Huskers lost. Guess my cheer didn't help. :-P

Thursday, October 7, 2010

My Sampler Roundy Pics


Gosh you guys didn't have to think at all to guess what my new start was! I'm impressed!

Finally went back to work today. Still trying to cough my lungs up but at least after my Dr. appt. on Tuesday I'm armed with the good cough medicine so I can sleep at night. I was given a different anti-biotic also and it seems to be loosening things up better than the other one was. My voice is still iffy, comes and goes and I kinda sound like a man . Dan is enjoying that as he has always liked Kathleen Turner's voice and I sound more like her now than I do me. He still has to close his eyes though cuz I certainly don't look anything like her!

Anyway, while I was at work I snapped some pics of my version of Shakespeare's Peddler's Sampler Roundy. I used my own selection of colors and I changed the placement of some colors and I moved a couple of letters up or down as I felt necessary. I'm thrilled with the results. This chart is so cute and the base makes the piece!

If anyone is interested in my color choices, please feel free to email and I will let you know what I used.

Got a call from Amy yesterday telling me that once again I was right. God I love hearing those words come out of her mouth! I just can't tell you how much I like to hear them especially from Amy. Earlier in the day she had told me about this boy that kept instant messaging her every time she got on Facebook. It was starting to bother her. I told her I thought perhaps he was interested in her and just hadn't gotten up the nerve to say something. She pooh-poohed that idea. Guys don't like me, she said. I agreed, in High School I think she scared a lot of them but I told her college is a whole new world. Turns out he was interested in her and was hoping to get her phone number. Someday, all of my kids will admit that I'm not dumb. Abby is still the holdout. She may think it, but she will never admit that I might know what I'm talking about.

Speaking of Abby, we had Halloween Costume drama around here the last week or so. She had ordered a costume back in August and needed it her by the 9th of October as she and a friend were renting a party bus and celebrating their birthdays with a costume party. The costume didn't show up or ship by the 25th of Sept. like they said so she called them. The costume was still in China. Not going to get here by the party date. Long story short....she threw a temper tantrum at the shop and was all upset until I suggested she call them back and ask if perhaps a costume she liked more but couldn't afford was available and would they maybe give her a discount since she had ordered way back in August. For $36.00 more she got the costume she really wanted and it arrived in just a couple days. I arrived home from work last week to see the costume on the floor in the entryway, not a good sign. Where's Abby I ask? In her room crying. The costume doesn't fit, she's fat and her life is over. I called her downstairs and asked her to try it on so I could see if it would stretch enough to close but she wouldn't do it. She held it up showed me how it wouldn't even come close to closing (and it was a medium, hence the I'm fat thought process, rolling my eyes here) threw it down and went back upstairs. I thought it best to let her pout and ponder overnight but in the morning I suggested perhaps she could call the tailor she's used in the past and maybe, just maybe she could help Abby with the costume. Muttering under her breath about how that was never going to happen she placed the call. The tailor returned her call Tuesday and asked her to bring the costume and she would look at it. I got a call later that day. The costume fits mom! The costume fits! Great I said, how did the tailor fix it so quickly? She didn't have to. She told me to put it on over my dress and then she just hooked it up in the back. Over my dress!! Oh, I said, you mean it's stretchy? Yes! It fits just fine! You mean you aren't fat??? Oh mom, don't be silly. Now I could have done the same thing with the costume but Abby would never have believed me if I said I thought it would stretch to fit so smart woman that I am, I saved myself some more drama, made Abby feel sheepish and once again proved that I am not as dumb as she thinks I am. I call that a win-win. Oh and guess what? Her bestie decided she didn't want to have to get a costume this early so she made Abby cancel the costume part of the party by saying everyone was complaining. Turns out it was only the bestie that didn't want to wear a costume. But what's done is done. Hopefully Abby will be able to attend some other parties so she can wear the dang thing since it caused so much trouble!

That's all for tonight folks. Thanks for visiting and commenting if you do.

Take care till next time!


Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Sick! and a New Start!

Good Morning!

I don't have too much to write about today. I'm still sick and when you spend your days laying around there isn't much interesting to talk about. But I'll give it my best shot.

Our open house on Saturday went very well. I think everyone found something they couldn't live without, with maybe the exception of 1 person. I was a bit surprised by the limited edition scissors we brought back from the Dinky Dyes booth. We brought 10 pairs of them home from market and I think we only had 1 pair left when we closed. Did not expect that! The charts by AuryTM sold very well also, along with Shakespeare's Peddler's Sampler Roundy. I was somewhat surprised that the Jennie Bean Friendship sampler did not sell at all as I think it's a wonderful chart. Her Halloween sampler however, sold out. But that's the nature of the business, it's hard to predict what will sell and what won't. All in all, it was a good day!

Market itself was good. I enjoyed seeing everything in person and meeting all the designers. There were a lot of needlepoint designers there but I never saw many people in those rooms. Doesn't mean there weren't any, I just didn't see them. It didn't seem very crowded to me in the counted stitch rooms either. Which for me was great, it was easier to see everything and to talk to the designers and such but I'm sure it must have disappointed the designers although I have heard from several that they were very happy with the turn out and sales. I was somewhat disappointed to see when we arrived home from Market that almost everything, with a few exceptions, we saw at Market was available already from Hoffmans. If you want more people to attend the Markets, might I suggest you make it worth their time and money by delaying the availability of Market Releases by a week or three to the general public, thus giving those that do make the effort an advantage over those that didn't. I'm just saying...

I had planned to show you my latest finish but I took it to the shop on Saturday and didn't take a picture of it beforehand. I've been home sick since then so I still haven't taken a picture of it. It'll have to wait. I did just get a call from the Dr. with a cancellation for today so hopefully I will be feeling better soon. The cough is gonna be the death of me.

In the is a picture of my latest start. Can you guess what it is?

I'm still working on my Chatelaine piece also but haven't taken a picture of it.

In family news....

Amy was home from college this past weekend. She's doing well at school and is settling in quite nicely. She's discovered that she cannot do everything and still keep the 3.5 gpa she needs to keep her scholarship so she has backed off a bit on some extra curricular activities for the school paper but otherwise is managing to study and have a bit of a social life too.

Adam is well from what we hear. He is still super busy at work and as far as I know will still be headed to D.C. after the first of the year. That could still change but it's not looking like it will.

Abby is also doing well with school. She's been doing a lot of tailgating down in Lincoln on the weekends but sticking pretty close to home during the week.

That pretty much catches you up on the goings on in my world. I'm busy working on things for the spring retreat. We're halfway booked now which I think is fabulous. I was getting caught up with the framing at work before I got sick but imagine I will be behind again when I get back. I know I have a graduation collage to design when I get back as it came in Saturday. Oh well, it's better than not being busy at all!

Enjoy this first week of October everyone! We're having beautiful weather here, too bad I haven't been out to enjoy it!

Take care till next time!


Friday, October 1, 2010

Market Open House is Tomorrow!

Whew! What a week! Between catching up with framing, pricing all the new goodies, getting everything in the computer and being sick since Tuesday, I need a vacation! We finished putting things out for display at 5:45 this evening and I am working feverishly (literally) to finish up a shop model for tomorrows Open House. I had a hard time finding places to display everything but I think we managed to spread it out enough that browsers shouldn't have a problem with, well, browsing! LOL!

I still have 2 paintings to stretch and 2 more cross stitch pictures to frame, plus a golf layout and then I am officially caught up! Should get that finished Monday and then the rest of next week should be cake.

Don't have anything to share stitching wise as I don't want to post the shop model until it's finished and it still needs to be mounted.

I hope everyone has a wonderful weekend and if you live in the area stop by between 10 and 4 tomorrow to see all the stash we brought home!

Take care till next time,


Monday, September 27, 2010

Back from Market

Happy Monday Everyone!

Got back from market last evening. Had a great time, met some wonderful designers, brought back some great new things! I even went out of my box and am going to give some different techniques a try. Gonna be a busy week getting everything priced and in the computer not to mention displayed so if you are in the neighborhood, we are having a Market Open House this coming Saturday. The shop opens at 10!

Have a great day everyone!

Take care till next time.


Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Retreat! Warning, long post lots of pics

Hello Everyone!

Sorry it's been so long since my last post. I was extremely busy getting everything ready for our fall retreat which occurred this past weekend. Along with all the stuff to get ready I also had some family things come up so stitching and blogging got pushed down the list of things that needed doing. Retreat is over and some of the family stuff has been resolved so hopefully life will settle back down to a somewhat normal routine.

Retreat was awesome! I can't speak for everyone else but I had a great time. Well except for the last night and stomach and I weren't getting along at the time so it wasn't as much fun then. MaryAnn and I were to leave for retreat Thursday morning around 11:00 so we could get there in plenty of time to unload everything and get set up for the stitcher's who were to arrive after 3:00. As usual things didn't go quite the way they were supposed to. My phone rang about 8:30 Thursday morning. An unsuspecting me answered only to hear this tiny little voice saying, Mom, I'm dying. I hate phone calls that start out with that sentence. I've gotten quite a few of them in my 26 years of motherhood and by now I realize it's usually an exaggeration but it still causes my stomach to drop into my feet. Not as long a drop as it could be since I'm short but still enough to give me that sick feeling your get when you hear those words. That morning it was Amy that was dying. I asked her what the problem was and she responded by saying she had been throwing up all night. She had a fever, couldn't breathe, was shaky and wanted to come home. There are 2 things Amy likes to have when she is sick. Her dog and her mama. In that order. So the fact that I was going to be in Lincoln where she currently was didn't deter her from wanting to come home. Her dog was here. I told her I could come and get her and could be on my way shortly but she nixed that idea. She has a class at 2 in the afternoon on Thursdays with a no absentee policy. Let me tell you what I think of no absentee policies. Stupidest thing I have ever heard in my life. Why on Gods green earth would you as a teacher want someone with the freaking stomach flu in your class room spreading the virus to all and sundry? Were you at the end of the line when common sense was handed out???? I know I as a fellow student wouldn't want you sitting next to me shedding virus. I asked Amy if she were to email the teacher and explain the situation whether she would make an exception. Apparently that was covered the first day. No absence means no absence. Period. You miss, you are out of the class. Okay then. Plan B. MaryAnn and I will drive down as scheduled with a slight detour to the college. I would bring with me the left over anti-nausea pills from Abby's tonsillectomy which would hopefully get Amy up off the floor of her dorm room, to the shower, to class, and finally through the drive home. We only had 2 pills. Timing was everything. Dan would pick her up at 4 and bring her home. After that her dog was going to have to take care of her. MaryAnn was called to make sure this would work for her and at 11:00 we were on our way. Amy looked pretty rough when I got there. No color in her face whatsoever. I gave her the pill (dissolves under the tongue) and after about 20 minutes she started to look a bit better. At 30 minutes she sat up and finally at 40 minutes she felt able to shower. This was a very good thing as she didn't have time to put her hair in a pony before throwing up the first time and she was smelling a bit nasty. I left her to it and headed out to the car where MaryAnn was waiting. We arrived at the B & B, got unloaded, set up chairs and even had time to relax on the front porch before our first stitcher arrived at 3:00 pm on the dot, followed shortly by everyone else. Retreat was officially in progress!

Upon their arrival, everyone was given a little present. I had been shopping at Hobby Lobby in August and had seen these small paper mache boxes and thought they would make a cute little gift to give to our stitcher's. Unfortunately, they only had 3. I needed 14. So I called Dan. Hey, can you check out the Millard HL store for these boxes I need? Not only did he check the Millard Store, but he also went to every other HL in the metro area. Sadly, we were still short several boxes. Lucky for me, he was picking up Amy from college that weekend and after I called the Lincoln HL to confirm that they had some he picked up a couple from there too. But still we were short. Enter Linda, one of our stitcher's. She lives in Iowa, not too far from Omaha and she said she would check her HL for boxes. She was able to pick up a couple too. But would you believe we still needed 1 more box???? Now it was MaryAnn's turn. She texted her niece in Sioux City who went to that HL and she got the last box that we needed. Actually she bought 3 so we ended up with 2 extras. MaryAnn already had a trip planned to Sioux City that week so she was able to bring the final boxes back. Now all I had to do was figure out what in the world I was going to do with them!! I searched and searched for a freebie pattern that was small enough to fit on the top of the 3" x 3" box but unless we stitched it over one it just wasn't going to happen. Not all of our ladies like over one on 36 count fabric so I rejected everything I found. Finally I came up with the idea to chart an initial for each person and put a border around it. After painting each box, then antiquing it, I applied the stitched piece to the top of the box and added a piece of trim to finish it off. Here's what mine looked like.

Here's a side view showing the embossing and antiquing.

I would have liked to get a picture of everyone with their box since they all finished them while at retreat but I was unable to do so.

Thursday night we all went out to Lonestar Steak House for dinner. We had a great time and then returned to the Roger's House and stitched till 11 or so. Some stayed up later but I was tired so I took myself off to bed.

Friday we enjoyed breakfast provided by the B & B and then everyone sat down and stitched the day away. Our last 3 retreaters arrived Friday afternoon.

We also had the pleasure of getting a massage Friday afternoon. MaryAnn and I wanted to see if this would be something people would be interested in for the spring retreat. The general consensus was Hell Yes!! Most everyone said they would pay twice what was charged for the massage. This was my first time getting a massage and all I can say is WOW!! I'd do it again in a heartbeat.

Supper that night was lasagna, ham, rolls and a veggie plate plus apple crisp for dessert. MaryAnn and I provided the meal this time. We were up stitching till almost midnight that night. I think it was also that night that we planned MaryAnn's wedding to Jim, her significant other. It was hilarious some of the ideas that were thrown out there. The laughter was flowing freely and loudly for quite some time that evening. In fact we were so loud for so long that when we did finally quiet down the night time inn keeper came out of the office to make sure we were okay. Guess we got too quiet and she was worried!! There is only one little hitch to the whole wedding plan thing, Jim has yet to propose to MaryAnn!! We're prepared though if he ever takes the big leap!

Saturday was a cool and rainy day, just perfect for staying inside and stitching. Breakfast was again provided by the B & B. We stitched until lunch and then I showed everyone how to finish their boxes. Later on, Nebraska had a football game on TV so some of the stitcher's went upstairs to watch the game while the rest of us stayed downstairs stitching. Ruby Tuesdays catered dinner Sat. night. It was not what we had been led to believe it was going to be so I was somewhat disappointed in the meal but I didn't eat anyway because my stomach was not feeling good at that time.

Sunday after breakfast, again provided by the B & B, we stitched for a while before it was time to pack up and head home. All in all I think it was a great time. We received several emails from the gals thanking us for hosting a wonderful retreat. We're already planning for next fall. We might try someplace new for a change of scenery. Or we might not. Only time will tell.

If you're wondering what it is that I stitched on for all those days, it wasn't what I had planned. I had chosen a new project to start but it didn't take me long to fling it aside in frustration and pick up an older WIP. Much less frustrating to work on and I quite enjoyed my stitching after that. Which WIP you say?
My Chatelaine! I got quite a bit done too all things considered. Here's a pic of it the last time I posted it.

And here it is now. I didn't stitch the whole thing this weekend, just the upper right corner. I love the colors in this piece. So bright and beautiful! Why have I not stitched on it in over a year??

Also have a finish to share with you...

This is the first pillow I have ever made all by myself. The pattern is a freebie that I found here
For my first attempt it turned out pretty good but I think I could have stuffed it a bit more.

This post is now a mile and a half long so I think I will call it done. Hopefully you enjoyed hearing about our retreat and remember, we are having a spring retreat next April. If you are interested in attending, check out my sidebar for more information.

Tomorrow MaryAnn and I leave for the St. Charles Market. I'll tell you all about it next week!

Take care till next time.


Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Stupid is as stupid does!

Happy Hump Day Everyone!

Hard to believe it's already Wednesday! Gotta love a short work week!

I'm glad everyone liked Hare's Christmas. Thanks for the compliments and thanks also for the lovely comments on Abby's art. I showed them to her and she was quite surprised that people liked them.

So I think I did a stupid thing Monday. I was browsing Craigslist when I spied a listing for 2 antique chairs. Clicked on the listing and up came the picture. The first chair is somewhat unique in my opinion and I knew Miss Abby would love the shape of it. The second chair was perfect! I've been looking for a chair to fit in the corner of my bedroom and I could see it in my minds eye all spruced up with a throw tossed carelessly over the arm. The price was great too, only $20.00 for both! I quickly emailed the person selling the chairs and got an answer back before too long, the chairs were still available and we could come look at them any time. I grabbed Dan and quick like a rabbit we hopped in the car and headed down the road to Bellevue. Arriving at our destination we rang the bell and were shown to the basement where these beauties were being stored. The young couple that was selling the chairs had just recently moved from Wyoming. With an infant and new jobs they just didn't have the time to clean the chairs up so they decided to sell them and get them out of their basement. Dan and I sat on them, turned them upside down, hemmed and hawed, discussed if we wanted one or both and the gal pipes up and says you can have them both for $15.00. Fifteen huh, well I guess if we can get them in the car we'll take them. I gave her the $15.00 and we carried them outside and lo and behold they fit just fine in the car. And that right there was where the stupid part came in. If I had a lick of sense in my head I would have pretended that they didn't fit, got my money back and got our happy asses out of there. But no....I brought these chairs home and chattered all the way about how awesome they were going to look re-done.

I have to blame my friend Becca for thinking these chairs would be a good idea. Mostly because I don't really want to take the blame for being stupid but also because she just finished a chair similar to the red one and it turned out beautifully! But, and this is a big BUT...she has a friend that knows how to upholster and said friend was happy to help her learn how to do it. I do not have such a friend. Becca lives in Dayton. Ohio. She isn't going to come to Omaha anytime in the foreseeable future to teach me how to do it. So what in the sam hill was I thinking buying these chairs????? I certainly can't afford to pay someone to reupholster these beauties. I don't want them in my house the way they are and I would really like to park my car in my garage this winter instead of harboring this disreputable pair of chairs!! But the deed is done so I need to come up with a solution to the problem. Did I mention Abby wants Zebra stripes on the pink chair? Nothing like adding stripes to an already difficult project! I'll keep ya posted on their status but if you know anyone in my neck of the woods that would like to teach me the craft of re-upholstery, have them look me up. I'll be the one beating my head against the wall repeating Stupid stupid stupid over and over.

Take care till next time!


Sunday, September 5, 2010

Hare's Christmas Pillowized!

Happy Labor Day Weekend!!

It's been a very relaxing weekend so far. All the kids are home, the weather has been awesome, the food good...can't ask for more than that! Amy has had tons of stories about college life, Adam has had tons of stories about work so most of our time together has been spent talking and catching up. Today Amy is upstairs doing homework, Adam is off at a Fantasy Football draft, Abby is working and Dan is in the garage working on Amy's headboard. I'm doing laundry, getting stuff ready for supper and even stitching a bit. We had to watch an action movie as part of Amy's homework so we sat and watched Die Hard this morning. Can't get much better than Bruce Willis in a die hard movie for action! Tonight the kids are all going bowling. This is a strange and unusual occurrence in this house. Never have the 3 chosen to do something together. Willingly. With no fighting. Still trying to wrap my mind around that one!

Stitching has been scarce this week. I've been busy working on a little project for our fall retreat. It does include stitching but it's not done yet and I couldn't share it right now anyway since it's for retreat and some of the ladies read the blog. Everyone will have to be patient for 2 weeks and then I can show you.

I did get my Hare's Christmas back from the "pillowizer". It's so darn cute I can hardly stand it! Those rabbits just make me smile! I backed it with the fabric it's laying on.

I wanted to share some of Abby's artwork with you. She's been bored at work lately. Last week she took her sketch pad and pencils with her and this was the result:

She volunteered to do the bulletin board at school too. The radiology students wear blue scrubs and they get to dress up for Halloween this year so they decided to be Smurfs. Abby took that idea and drew a Smurf for the bulletin board and then added the lead apron and thyroid cover that the patients use.

I think it turned out really cute but I'm her mama so I might be a bit biased. Just a little.

Guess that's about it for today. I hope you all are enjoying your weekend as much as I am!

Take care!