Dec 31, 2009

Getting all stove up

Yesterday we did indeed sign on the dotted line and purchase a Kubota tractor. It will be delivered Saturday next. DH is salivating. We have decided to call it "the tractor" as we have no need to differentiate between other tractors as we have only one. Plus DH said that he didn't want anything named Bevo sitting around our place unless he could shoot it. Spoken like a true Red Raider. (Irene, when I suggested to DH that we paint it Aggie maroon, he just gave me "the look.")
Today we begin installing our wood stove. DH will do most of the work. Here are all the boxes of pipe and rooftop pieces. Yes, those are DH's hunting boots hiding by the door. He thinks I don't see them there. He is wrong.
Here is the stove unboxed and removed from its wood pallet shipping platform. The door is still in a box as it was shipped separately.

Dec 30, 2009


As a child, I was never fascinated by cars, trucks, tractors, or planes. As I grew up in the city, I never thought that I would ever own a tractor - only farmers own those.
However, now I live out in the country on a dirt road with "the long driveway with drainage issues and Texas slick-as-snot-when-wet dirt" that needs repair and maintenance. Our acreage is covered in trees and some grass areas, all of which have been neglected for a long time and are very unkempt. We need a tractor. We need a tractor with landscaping capabilities, not crop tending capabilities. Before this week, I never knew there was a difference. ☺
While farming tractors have implements like discs or harrows or hay balers, landscaping tractors use implements like pasture shredders (mowers), front-end loaders, back hoes, box blades, and post hole diggers (and snow blowers, although I doubt we'll need one down here). Yes, I now know the difference and usage of all these. ☺
DH has spent a lot of time on the phone this week talking to tractor dealers, friends with tractors, and people who repair tractors. I have spent hours on the internet researching and pricing tractors. We learned that - as with cars - there are "grades" of tractors. We will be buying the "Hyundai" grade (Kubota) of tractor, although DH will be going out and talking to the guys at the "Chevy" grade (John Deere) of tractor store this afternoon.
Unless they make him an offer we can't refuse, we will then go to "The Nation's #1 Volume Kubota Dealer" up in Normangee and buy this tractor with a pasture shredder, box blade, and front-end loader.
I have no problem with the Kubota tractor other than it is a nauseating shade of t.u. orange. Maybe I'll name it Bevo.
I haven't stitched in two days as I've been online looking at tractors. I am tired of tractors and doubt I'll ever feel compelled to stitch one. However, I do intend to learn to operate this new tractor; DH can't keep all the fun to himself. Look out world!

Dec 28, 2009

Beyond Christmas

DH and I survived Christmas. We traveled up to the Dallas area which was hit by the first Christmas snowstorm it has had since 1926. Texans do not know how to drive in snow/ice; they mostly crash. It snowed on Christmas Eve and there was snow on the ground on Christmas Day, but most of it was melted off by noon. It was pretty while it lasted.
It was a weird Christmas. We were unable to visit all of our relatives due to the weather and illnesses, so it feels unfinished.
We came home on Saturday afternoon and spent yesterday as football-watching couch potatoes. The Colts got beat (ha ha!), Denver did not succeed in beating the Eagles (poop), and the Cowboys won against the Redskins and clinched a play-off spot! Emma enjoyed the day by lounging all over her potato humans.
Today I am doing laundry and researching tractors online. DH and I have finally figured out that buying a tractor will be the best and least expensive way in the long run to get our driveway fixed and maintained. So I am learning more about tractors than I ever wanted to know. We plan to go tractor shopping later this week. Whee.
Our wood stove and all its varied and sundry parts have finally all been delivered. DH hopes to get it installed over New Year's. It shouldn't take more than a day if all goes according to plan. I'll take pictures of the installation process as it happens.
I've stitched some on the March boot and have until Thursday to get it done this year.

Dec 21, 2009

I went to Wal-Mart before Christmas

Today I had to go to Wal-Mart. It was a mostly uneventful trip. Oh, it was crowded with shoppers and children and wandering people and carts and stockers and people and people and people, and did I mention people? But everyone was mostly nice and polite and patient, and most folks tried to smile.
Among other things, I had to get a little toy for both of my nephews. I made them each a Christmas ornament, but I know this will not "wow" them at this age. DN1 was excited to get to hang his on the tree last year, but an ornament is not a toy.
DH and I vowed to always make sure that nephews and nieces get a toy from us on Christmas, at least while they are young. We both remember Christmases where we got needed items like clothing, but no toys from relatives. While we appreciated the gifts of clothing as much as a little kid can, a small toy can go a long way.
I got DN2 a small truck, suitable for his age of one and a half years. He is following his big brother's example of being a car nut. I tried to think of something different (besides a car) for DN1, but then I thought, why go against the grain? I got him a Hot Wheel car that changes color when placed in ice water. Apparently, I am the car Auntie. DH thought I was nuts for getting DN1 something that needs to be dipped in ice water. I responded that at least it doesn't make noise!
For years I have threatened my DBro that DH and I will buy his children loud and noisy toys if he annoys us. (I really wouldn't do this unless I asked first, but it's fun to threaten.) When our nieces were young, DH used to threaten his sister with the same thing; noisy toys from the aunt and uncle!
I could have been the book Auntie as I love books, but my nephews have another Auntie who is the "official" book Auntie. She has the added advantage of finding books that she and her sister (my nephews' mom and my DSIL) read as children. This makes them more special. I still give books on other occasions, but Auntie N usually gives them books at Christmas.
DH installed the medicine chest and the new light fixture in the new bathroom this weekend. He also worked on building a small medicine chest to fit in the hole in the wall in the picture as the one we had originally chosen didn't work out.
While checking out at Wal-Mart today, a small child dropped her nearly-full McDonald's drink on the floor right behind me, splashing my jeans legs liberally with soda. She was distraught (mainly because mom wouldn't buy her another as she had not been careful with the first one), and she did help her mom clean it up. Her mom didn't notice that I had been splashed, and I didn't say anything because the jeans will wash and well, there are bigger hills to die on.
While the northeastern part of the country is buried in snow, we have balmy and sunny skies here. It was 34 degrees this morning, but is now 66 degrees. Tomorrow promises to be in the seventies. I love winter in Texas!

Dec 20, 2009

Party hardy

Well, the office Christmas party was a lot of fun. Due to the fact that DH failed to properly note the start time, we arrived half an hour early. No big deal as it gave us time to visit with the boss and his wife and their three youngest children who are fifth-graders and triplets - two boys and a girl.
As their dad had allowed them to have a soda as it was a "party evening," the boys (as boys will) discussed having contests with drinking the soda. I told them that that was silly; they should drink their soda quickly - "slamming it down" - and then have a belching contest. This was met with enthusiasm and much belching. (I'm such a bad influence. I regularly get myself and my nephews in trouble; I seem to do that with kids.) The boys' sister just rolled her eyes; she is a very mature and sensible girl for her age. ☺
The gift swap was fast and furious. As the boss also owns part of a business for hunting wild boar/pigs (he owns the "pig attractant" part - Black Gold), there were many fancy hunting knives as gifts and these were getting stolen by the men. Starbucks gift cards were popular among the ladies.
I ended up with four jars of home-canned jam and pickles! Yippee! And no, I will not share with DH. I used to can a lot. I will again once we get the propane line moved and my stove top hooked up. Right now, I cook on two electric hotplates, not the ideal thing for canning.
And how 'bout them Cowboys! They beat the Saints! We did not see the game as we don't subscribe to the NFL Network. Poop. I am sorry that the Saints got beat, but if they had to get beat, them I'm glad it was the Cowboys that beat them. Now if someone would just knock off the Colts.

Dec 18, 2009

Ponderings, WIPS, and a tale of stupidity

Note to Mary: shoot me if I ever go over to the "dark side!" (The lime is in the back shed.)
The sun is finally out today (WHEE-E-O!!) so I took a picture of my WIP. It's stitched on 25 count antique white Lugana with DMC. Well, the boot vamp is actually an AVAS brown. I'm stitching each different boot vamp with a different brown fiber. I stitched January with GAST and February with Silk 'n' Colors. (The green blob is a cactus.)
Recently, the lid on my Crock-Pot fell apart, so I had to chuck the whole thing as buying a new lid was cost prohibitive (a sad state of affairs). After doing a little looking online (because my local Wal-Mart was out of four-quart models which was what I wanted), I came across a 3-in-1 model on Amazon made by Hamilton Beach. This slow cooker is highly rated and I love the idea of having three different crock sizes (2-, 4-, and 6-quart).
After seeing what shipping was going to be (and shuddering), I looked online and googled in vain for a local store that carried it. Every local store that did was out of stock with no due date. Even the manufacturer (with free shipping but a lot higher price) was out of stock! So I went back to Amazon and bought it. A gal can't be without a slow cooker for too long!
When reading the instructions (yes, I'm anal and I do that, even when I'm sure I know the product well), I came across this "because you can no longer think and reason logically" statement. Now note that this model has three different crocks of three very discernible sizes. The instructions state that the sizes are stamped on the bottom of the crocks so you can tell the difference in size. Fer cryin' out loud.
And now, for the epic tale of the Oklahoma chimney fire. When we bought the house, at the closing the previous owner mentioned that he had cleaned the chimney so the wood stove was ready for use, and that the "chain was hanging in the garage." As it was June, DH and I filed this away in our minds.
We'd never had a house with a wood stove before and assumed that this was the way you cleaned them when connected to a chimney. We'd grown up with fireplaces, but our parents always employed the occasional chimney sweep to clean them. We were idiots for assuming anything. I should have researched this online immediately. Doh.
We had nice fires and the house was heated comfortably for most of the winter. Then one morning, while I was in the shower, I heard a sound like a 747 jet was flying low overhead. It got louder. And louder. It seemed as if the entire house was rumbling. Then I heard clanging, banging, and DH flying about the house while exclaiming.
The creosote in the chimney had caught fire. DH was able to put it out by closing the damper so it smothered. He went up on the roof to look down the chimney to check that it was out, and then opened the ash door and sprayed water on the ashes to kill it beyond a shadow of a doubt.
As spring was near, we used our HVAC for the remainder of the winter and spent the summer assessing our problem. We called out a chimney sweep to inspect/clean it. He came down off the roof shaking his head. Apparently, if you use a wood stove, it is really best to vent it through stove pipe because it is much easier to clean. If you vent it through a brick chimney, you must be meticulous to clean it at least four or five times a season PROPERLY - as in with a chimney brush and lots of elbow grease.
The previous owner had used a long heavy chain that he whacked around down inside the chimney to knock off some of the creosote deposits. His whacking had also cracked and chipped the bricks inside the chimney. If DH had not gotten the fire out so quickly, the fire could have gotten out through the cracks and into our attic - not good. The previous owner was lucky that it hadn't happened to him. The previous owner, while nice, was a dingle-brain.
The chimney sweep said that until we relined the chimney with Class Two chimney pipe, we shouldn't use the stove. He said that he'd be happy to do it for us for *an exorbitant price* or that if we were handy, we could do it ourselves for much less by buying the supplies we needed at Lowe's. We are handy so we did.
We also bought a stove pipe brush and really long handle to clean the pipe regularly. Thereafter, DH went up on the roof and cleaned the pipe monthly during the time we used the wood stove. No more chimney fires for us! (Now, why do I have visions of Dick Van Dyke dancing on a rooftop and singing?)

Dec 17, 2009

Ready to party

I stitched this in March and finally got around to finish-finishing it today. I had to - I have to give it away tomorrow evening at DH's company Christmas Party.
We always have a gift swap (with stealing) and I stitch something for the swap every year. Actually, I really stitch it for Georgia, the quiltin' lady who works with DH. I show her the wrapping when we get there so she knows which package to get. So far, no one has dared steal it from her! You don't mess with the head office lady!
The picture is barely passable. We have another day of gloomy and rainy weather. I tried taking a picture of my WIP, but it kept coming out too dark. Maybe tomorrow as the weatherman is promising sun. We'll see.

Dec 16, 2009

Heating and cooling

When DH and I lived in Oklahoma, the house we bought had a wood stove for primary heat. Oh, it had HVAC, but the previous owners mainly used the wood stove to heat the house during the winter. The stove was piped directly into a brick chimney for venting.
It was mule's backside ugly and you couldn't see the fire, but it did a good job. It looked kind of like this, only uglier:
The first winter we lived there, DH learned to be a master fire-builder and we luxuriated in the even heat. That is, until the chimney fire...a long and arduous story. So we went back to HVAC for the rest of that winter. PSA: Folks, clean those chimneys regularly and PROPERLY to avoid chimney fires. (And yes, they do sound like a 747 roaring by overhead.)
The next winter, after having the chimney inspected by a chimney sweep, we relined the chimney with Class 2 pipe per his recommendation. We did it ourselves and a video of our installation process would be worthy of "America's Funniest Videos." And once again, we were in business and enjoying the even heat.
After one winter (albeit a south central Texas winter) of heating our house with space heaters, and facing yet another winter of going the space heater route as our new HVAC system is not yet installed, I began to yearn for that old ugly wood stove in Oklahoma. DH, ever the closet pyromaniac, was also missing it. So we decided to get one and it will be our primary source of heat.
I went to the one fireplace store here in town to research what was available locally and was unimpressed and my tightwad self was shocked. Then I spent about a day online doing more research. There have been a lot of advances in wood burning stove technology in recent years; modern stoves burn a lot cleaner and more efficiently. Al Gore would be so proud. (Said with my tongue buried very firmly in my cheek.)
We ended up buying a stove from Northline Express, an online store out of Michigan that specializes in all things fire-related. The new stove is very energy efficient and qualifies us for a green tax rebate! We should get it between Christmas and New Year's and DH should be able to install it very quickly. It looks like this:
Our land is very wooded and DH loves to use his chain saw, so finding wood to burn should not be a problem. And there are always neighbors with downed trees who would love someone to come out, cut up, and haul away said tree.
On the stitching front, I am moving along nicely on the March boot. I'll post a picture tomorrow or Friday when hopefully the sun will come back out and I can get a good picture. I feel like a mushroom as the sun hasn't been out much in the last five days. Gloomy, grismal, damp, and cheerless.
I'm 99% done with my Christmas shopping. Why is it that Christmas shopping always falls to the wife? I do make DH wrap everything. I figure if I bag it, he can dress it.
Back when he was single, DH used to go Christmas shopping for his family a day or two before Christmas and have the store wrap the presents. Tightwads do not do such frivolous things; we shop or make presents year-round!

Dec 12, 2009

An ornament finish

Here is the "Yo Ho Ho Ho" Santa all finished into an ornament.
After I got it all done (and got all the glue off my fingers), I spent some time fondling my stash in search of a quick project that I can finish before the end of December. I've started on the March boot from Redbird Designs "Southwest Seasons."
I stitched January in '07 and February in '08, so I figured I'd better keep up the trend and do another one in '09. At this rate, I'll have them all finished in 2018. :-)

Dec 11, 2009

Yo Ho Ho Ho

Here's my progress on Sue Hillis' "Yo Ho Ho Ho" Christmas ornament pirate Santa freebie. He's all stitched - I just have the backstitching to do. I stitched on him on Charles Craft tea-dyed Monaco with DMC.

Dec 9, 2009

"The Boys Are Back in Town"

Here is the picture of "The Boys Are Back in Town."
I stitched it on the called-for Weeks Dye Works 30 count linen in gunmetal color. (Bleagh.) I used DMC, DMC Effects (940), NPI silks, a VC silk, and GAST - I did not use the called-for Weeks Dye Works or Crescent Colors floss. I also did not stitch the spider's web as I did not like the way it looked (and because spider webs creep me out). The buttons are stitched on with Nymo thread.
Next I'll be stitching a Sue Hillis freebie, the "Yo Ho Ho Ho" Santa face.

Dec 8, 2009

Yippee Skippy and a mystery solved

Yippee skippy and happy dancing! I finished "The Boys" although no picture tonight because it's dark and I can't get a good one. But I'll post one first thing tomorrow.
Remember that I mentioned that DH had lost his favorite jacket and that he is not one to lose things? I got to thinking about it. I put two and two together. I was right. Mystery solved.
DH's boss is the proverbial absent minded professor; he would lose his head if it wasn't attached. He is a very nice guy and a wonderful boss, but he is like a little kid in some ways. Yep. He needed a jacket one day at work and thought the one hanging up was the one a supplier had given him, so he wore it home. It was DH's jacket. DH asked him about it today and the jacket will be returned tomorrow. DH is very happy that the jacket isn't lost!

Dec 7, 2009

Stitchtogether fun

We had an absolutely sunny and gorgeous day for our Saturday stitchtogether, although it was very cold. We had a lot of great food and ate well. We laughed until our sides ached and most of us got some stitching done. Our ornament swap was fun. I received this really cute Santa ornament stitched and finished by Melissa.
And here are the ornaments I stitched and they ended up going to Melissa! These are from an older Christmas booklet and I used a couple of small tuck ornaments I got off eBay from TrulyN2Stitching Designs. I've bought from Barbara on several occasions and she does very nice work.
Sunday, DH was hit by allergy/sinus problems so we ended up watching a lot of football instead of working on the bathroom. We'll not mention the Cowboys. *sigh*
Emma had a great day on Sunday as both of her humans were usually on or near the couch and under the fleece throw. She loves to nap on us when we are on the couch.
She got a little vexed with DH when he got up to get a snack, so she moved to the couch armrest in protest.
I'm nearly finished with "The Boys" and hope to be done this week. I'm still trying to make Mummy look like he should, and then I have all the buttons to stitch on. I'll post a picture when I'm finished.

Dec 4, 2009

Weird weather and a sweatshirt

The weatherman has been making dire predictions of snow and/or sleet and/or frozen rain for us today. This morning, it snowed lightly for about an hour. Now the sun is out and the skies are clear and promise to remain so until Sunday. (If you don't like the weather in Texas, just wait a few minutes, as the saying goes.)
I stitched on "The Boys" yesterday. I finished the old tree and then stitched the spider's web. It looked dorky and overpowered that side of the design to me, so I frogged it and will add the spider button hanging down from a tree limb off one strand of floss instead. (Plus spider webs really creep me out.) Now I am anally stitching Mummy. And restitching. Ad nauseum. Eventually, he'll look like I think he ought to as the pattern is a "guide only, your results may vary."
On another topic, I love all-cotton sweatshirts and they are really hard to find. I found a website that sells them (Sahalie) and bought a blue one last year. I liked it so much, I bought another in the color purple. They are a bit pricey, but I just LOOOVE them.
They came out with a new dark navy color this year that I yearned for, but I figured two was enough. Then this morning I got an e-mail advertising a sale on sweatshirts, an additional 10% off and free shipping (code 13474), so I indulged myself. All the online stores are having sales and offering free shipping for the holiday season - yippee!
Maybe I can find another sale so DH will be able to replace the Polartec 300 jacket that he lost. No, he doesn't know where it is or where he lost it. It's not in the car or the truck or the house or the shop or at work. It is not in his deer blind (I made him go out and check!) He is not one to lose clothing. It was his favorite jacket and he is sighing a lot and lamenting its loss.
Tomorrow is the I35 Stitchtogether and I am greatly looking forward to it. We're having our 2nd Annual Ornament Swap and that should be fun. There should be a lot of large finished projects for show-n-tell. And of course, there will be food and fellowship.

Dec 3, 2009

Do you goal?

Do you make stitching goals for yourself? I don't. I'm mostly a one-at-a-time stitcher and deadlines/goals make me feel stressed. Stitching is supposed to be relaxing and fun.
I'm always amazed at folks who do make monthly stitching goals and manage to accomplish them. I think they must have flying needles. My needle is slow and plodding, but it has fun.
I also get a kick out of folks who admit to having lots of WIPs. If I have more than three WIPs (current, take-to-stitchtogether, and MIL's BAP), I go nuts. I read a blog this morning where the stitcher admitted to having 44 WIPs. ACK!!!
I guess my goal for December is to finish "The Boys" and have enough time left in the year to stitch Sue Hillis' "Yo Ho Ho" Santa face freebie from last year. On January 1, 2010, I plan to start back stitching on my MIL's BAP and stitch on it until it is done as I'm tired of having it hover around my mind.
I've stitched on "The Boys" and Frankenstein is fully clothed now. I'm working on the tree and will stitch the spider's web and then Mummy. And then it will be finished!

Nov 30, 2009

Frank's britches

I got some stitching time in yesterday and managed to finish the lettering (I dislike stitching lettering) and give Frankenstein some shoes and his pants. (The buttons are just sitting on the fabric for show.)
This pattern is driving me nuts. It is a much-copied copy from an apparently low quality printer. JABC allows shop owners to make copies of this to give out to people who buy the button pack. The copy the shop gave me is blurry. I tried enlarging it, but it just made it blurrier.
Frankenstein is very difficult to read. I knew he had some shadows under his arms, but I couldn't read the pattern as the symbols are too similar. I found a picture online and after squinting myopically at it for several minutes, I think I managed to figure it out. We'll see once I get him stitched.

Nov 29, 2009

Name Tag FF

DH was happy to see that Texas Tech managed to win their game against Baylor yesterday. It was close.
I got my name tag finish-finished (FF). I used WonderUnder to iron it on some card stock. Here it is in the neck wallet.
I plan to get in some stitching this afternoon while DH putters in his shop working on bathroom cabinetry. I'll have to paint what he makes, but that's okay.

Nov 28, 2009


DH and I went down to Rockport for Thanksgiving to celebrate with his side of the family. My MIL had the misfortune of having her refrigerator die on Tuesday, so she was dealing with that (and five ice chests in the house).
Luckily, we had Thanksgiving dinner at DH's aunt's and uncle's house. As usual, we had a lot of fun. Dinner is always a very traditional and delicious meal, although this year a cousin brought some homemade tamales which were very good. We all cram around a couple of pushed-together tables in the dining room sitting elbow to elbow. At this table, if you ask for someone to pass a roll, they will - it will sail through the air down the table and you'd better catch it!
After we ate, Uncle Jerry and I by tradition washed and dried the dishes that needed it. (Aunt Sue is very sensible; we eat off paper plates!). This is always a hoot because Uncle Jerry is much more hard of hearing than I am, and doesn't wear a hearing aid in the ear I stand by as chief dish dryer. We yell at each other a lot. ☺
After all that, we all settled in to watch the Cowboys game. Go Cowboys! And later in the evening, we watched the Aggies and t.u. Boy! the Aggies really put up a valiant fight against t.u. this year - t.u. was worried! Gig 'em!
Friday morning, very early, DH and FIL went off to spend the morning fishing in the Gulf. They caught only one "keeper" and we had it for supper along with some previously caught fish and some fresh oysters as they're currently in season.
While the men were off catching supper, I went with MIL to continue her quest for a new refrigerator. She and FIL had found one at Sears the day the old one died, but the salesman called Friday morning and said that it couldn't be delivered until December 15th. Understandably, this vexed MIL, so we went in search of an acceptable "get there sooner" refrigerator. Happily, we found one.
We left for home this morning and we always stop at Turtle Bay Cafe and have brunch with MIL and FIL on our way out of town. This eatery is very tiny and it used to be a bait shack. It has very mismatched furnishings but really delicious food which is served on paper plates. The owner, Caroline, is a great home-style cook. MIL thinks she used to be a biker chick as she is a bit rough around the edges. ☺ DH had her homemade corned beef hash with eggs and a blueberry pancake that was at least 12" in diameter. I had ham steak, scrambled eggs, sliced tomatoes, and grits. Yep, that's a traditional southern breakfast.
After we got home, DH unpacked the car and then went off into the woods to hunt. The last thing he unpacked was Emma.

Nov 24, 2009

Fer cryin' out loud!

Yesterday I posted about my cute little name tag design. Afterwards, I sat down to continue stitching on it in hopes of getting it finished. At one point, I stopped and attempted to insert it in the neck wallet to see how it would look.
It looked too big. I tried again. Nope. Too big. Good grief! Did I measure the name tag area incorrectly? I got out my tape measure. Nope. I measured it correctly. Did I use the wrong dimensions while designing? I pulled up Pattern Maker to check. Nope. I used the correct dimensions.
Okay. It's not the neck wallet area and it's not the pattern. Therefore, logically it must be the fabric. So I pulled out my fabric gauge. Yep. The fabric measures 25.5 threads to the inch when it's supposed to be 28 count. Stupid fabric.
I stitch on Charles Craft Monaco a lot. I love it. And I also never check the gauge. I do all my own framing and rarely worry about dimensions. This time, it came back to haunt me. Or rather, it made me stitch something over. Fer cryin' out loud!
Not to be deterred, I spent the morning stitching. Here it is hot off the hoop. I stitched it on 32 count Lugana this time to be safe. I'll recommend that everyone use 16/32 count when they stitch it, especially if they have a long name. (Don't worry I35 Stitchers, your pattern does not include the Aggie emblem.)
I'll post a picture once I get it mounted in the neck wallet. It may be a few days as I've got Thanksgiving festivities to plan for and participate in.
May all y'all have a Happy Thanksgiving. Stop to reflect and give thanks for all your blessings in life.

Nov 23, 2009

Deer, dear!

It was a good football weekend as the Cowboys, Texas Tech, and the Aggies all won! Emma was especially enthused about the wins this weekend.
Wives of hunters are special people. They put up with a lot. This weekend, DH's alarm clock went off twice at five in the morning. This happens pretty much every weekend during hunting season from the first weekend in October until early January or until the hunter has bagged his limit on whatever he is hunting. DH's alarm always wakes me up. I don't sleep through alarms as they annoy me.
However, this weekend DH bagged his second deer of the season. It was a large spike buck that yielded a lot of meat for the freezer. Wives of deer hunters are special people because they allow their hunting husbands to put their clothes in the washing machine after they have field-dressed a deer in the mud. Thank goodness for the "extra soiled" setting.
Of course I heard the rifle shot at 6:30 a.m. shortly after I had fallen back asleep. I gave up and got out of bed as I knew I would soon hear the roar of the riding lawnmower putzing around in the woods. We have a pull-behind cart for our riding lawnmower and DH uses it to bring the deer in from the woods to the area near the house where he field dresses it. Modern deer hunters - don't let them kid you, ladies; it's all about the tools, motors, and machines.
We wasted a weekend on the bathroom. We tried to overcome the problem we had pop up by fixing it inexpensively and we were not at all pleased with the results. So we had to go with the $$$ solution and are pretty much right back where we started before the problem came up. Oh well.
I stitched a little bit on Saturday while DH was doing more cleaning duty out in his shop. I can actually see the floor of it now. I haven't been able to see the floor since shortly after I painted it in June of '08. ☺
At our last I35 Stitchers meeting, Cindy said we all ought to have I35 Stitchers name tags for when we go to stitching retreats. She thought it would be fun to identify our group and Lynn thought it would be handy for recruiting more new friends for our group.
So I pondered this and came up with a cross stitched name tag design for us all, and I found some neck wallets online for us to put our stitched name tag in. I've used neck wallets before at events and they are very handy. Ours have an extra pocket and a zippered pouch on the back - very nice for carrying money or your room key at stitching retreats instead of lugging around your purse.
I wanted to have my name tag finished for our next meeting on December 5th for the other ladies to see. So I put "The Boys" away for a day or two to stitch on my name tag. Here it is so far. I'm stitching it on a scrap of Monaco I had with NPI silks.
And here's a picture of the neck wallet. The clear plastic display area doesn't show up really well, but that's where the name tag will go. I'll post a picture when I get mine finished.

Nov 20, 2009

"The Boys" are a pain

For those of you that asked, I bought my little recipe binders (4" x 6") at Office Depot in the index card area of the store. They come in 3" x 5" also.
It's raining and it's gloomy, grismal, and glummy here today. The sun should be out tomorrow, but today just makes me want to drive to a sunny beach somewhere. It's starting to get colder (okay, colder for south central Texas), too. I may have to break out the long pants soon and put on shoes. Blech.
I've been stitching on "The Boys" and I have decided that I will never buy or use Weeks Dye Works linen fabric again despite how fabulous their fabric colors are. It's just too...too...too...limp and icky; you could strain tea through it. And yeah, that's just my opinion as many of y'all probably love it.
To me, it looks like I was drunk when I stitched on it, and I don't drink. Anyway, here is a picture of my progress. (The buttons are just sitting on the fabric for now.)
DH was a little late getting home last night and Emma was looking for him out the front window (ignore all the construction piles on the porch). That's the arm of our couch she's standing on.