Feb 28, 2012

Ta da! A finish!

My day yesterday started smashingly, as in I dropped the glass pitcher to our blender while putting it away and it smashed into pieces all over the floor.  Did I mention that I was bare footed at the time?  I managed to clean up all the glass without getting any in my feet.  As we use our blender daily, I needed to get another one quickly.  

I went online to look at blenders at Wal-Mart and thankfully, they had replacement glass pitchers available.  They also have this "new" feature where you can buy online and they hold it back for you to pick up at the store.  So I bought the pitcher online and DH picked it up on his way home from work.  Much cheaper than buying a new blender.  The new pitcher with tax was only sixteen bucks.

I finished "Bone Cheeks" by Prairie Moon yesterday afternoon.  It was a very fun stitch in spite of all the orphan stitches it had.  I've finally learned how to deal with them.  I used to do the labor intensive Pinn stitch, but now I just tie a tiny knot in the back of the stitch.  I learned of this from a lady who is a model stitcher, so I figured if she does it and the designers don't mind, then it probably won't make a difference. 

"Bone Cheeks" is stitched on 28 count white Monaco with the provided DMC floss conversions.  Next I'll stitch on the March block of "Crabby All Year."


Feb 27, 2012

A cooperative weekend

The weather cooperated and was mainly sunny all weekend.  DH was able to do all the things he wanted to do.  He started out the weekend by mowing our inside yard.  All the rain has caused the weeds to grow like mad.  They were nearly hip-high on me, and the dog was disappearing in them.  Of course, since we mulch when we mow, there was a lot of freshly-mowed grass on the ground and it made Emma sport green feet for awhile until the sun dried it all out.

DH did all the prep work necessary in the attic for installing the HVAC unit.  Then he dragged the unit onto the front porch and prepped it.  So now - besides a toilet and various construction debris - I have an HVAC unit on my front porch.  DH plans to have a male friend out soon to help him get it into the attic.  I'd help him but he fears that the unit would squash me if it slipped, so he's getting someone with male brawn out to help.

I'm *that close* to finishing "Bone Cheeks" and will probably get it finished today.  It's been a fun stitch.  I'll probably frame it and display it during Halloween.


Feb 23, 2012

Dratted rain

Yes, we need rain.  But we've had a lot of rain in a short period of time and the results around our property have been...interesting.  Due to the drought, we've had a lot of trees die off on our land.  We plan to do a walk through in the spring to assess which trees are still alive.  

Then there are the trees that have long been dead for many years.  DH has been trying to find time to cut them down.  Well, thanks to the rain, that won't be necessary.


Now he'll have to find the time to be a lumberjack and cut them up!  The tree in the photo directly above barely missed one of the sprinkler heads to our septic system.  Luckily neither one landed on anything other than the ground.  A miss is as good as a mile.

Feb 22, 2012

My current WIP

DH and I had a rather soggy weekend.  Poor DH, every time he tried to do something outdoors, it started to rain.  It seriously put a damper on his DIY plans for the weekend.  

And, of course, our lovely aerobic septic system started acting up due to the rain and we had to have the septic guy out to attend to it.  Thank goodness for cheerful guys who are willing to work at a job that requires close contact with septic systems!

While I know we need rain here in our drought-stricken area, I'm not one of those people who enjoys a rainy day; I prefer sunshine.  So I moped about and grumbled about the rain and stitched a lot.  I picked up "Bone Cheeks" and am having a lot of fun stitching on it.  So much so that I will not pick up "that durn flag" this month.  Heck, I may even finish "Bone Cheeks" before I start on the March block of "Crabby All Year!"


Feb 16, 2012

Stash enabling via newsletter

I'm on the e-mail newsletter list over at ABC Stich TherapyThey send out newsletters with new pattern releases and they often have patterns other shops don't have and can't get.  Such was the case this week when I received the latest newsletter and saw this pattern:

The subject matter didn't grab me but those bright colors sure did!  Yeah, there is a lot of pink, but look at all those luscious blues and greens!  It is BAP sized (220 x 245) with 64 DMC colors; it looks as if much of the pattern is in large color blocks without tons of confetti stitches.  The pattern is "Harana" by Cross Stitch Designs Rinna, a designer I've never seen before.  The more I looked at it, the more I decided I had to have it, so I ordered it.  By the way, there are a couple more patterns by this designer that are of the same genre.


Feb 14, 2012

A weirdly romantically unromantic Valentine's Day story

DH and I don't "celebrate" Valentine's Day.  We both think that if you can't show romance/love to your spouse during the rest of the year, then why bother?  And it is a media and overly commercialized circus that we prefer to ignore.

Many years ago, when I was in college, one of my friends and classmates was a very nice guy.  I'll call him "NiceGuy" to protect the guilty.  In my chosen major, there were about thirty of us and we typically spent the entire day together in our various classes.  We were a pretty close-knit group and everyone knew everything about everyone else; there were few secrets.

One fine day, NiceGuy woke up and decided to ruin a perfectly good friendship by deciding he wanted to date me.  *sigh*  We talked about it.  Repeatedly.  I told him I wanted to remain friends but did not want to date as I did not think of him as a boyfriend, only as a friend who happened to be male.  He thought that if he remained faithful, that I would change my mind.  Uh huh.

Of course, everyone in the class knew how he felt about me.  Everyone also knew that I did NOT feel the same way about him.  In fact, some of my other male friends in the class tried to talk some sense into NiceGuy.  He refused to face the facts.

So on Valentine's Day, I woke up as usual and went to class, not really registering that it was indeed Valentine's Day as I had no romantic interest at the time.  I got on the elevator to go up to my first class and one of my classmates said, "I'm sorry," and handed me a rose.  It was from NiceGuy (it had a sweet little note on it).  *sigh*

When I got to the classroom and sat down at my desk, another classmate walked up, told me she was sorry, and handed me a little box of chocolates.  It was from NiceGuy, and it, too, had a sweet little note on it.  *deep sigh*

This pretty much went on for the whole day.  A classmate would ambush me, tell me they were sorry, and hand me a little gift.  I was ambushed in the ladies bathroom, in the lunch line, in the supply closet - you name it.  I ended up with 10 little romantic presents, all with sweet notes and all things I liked (chocolate, a favorite pen, Dr. Pepper, etc.).

It turns out that NiceGuy had been pining away and one of the other guys in his dorm suite (all eight guys living in this suite were in our class) came up with the plan.  (I think the other guys were tired of listening to NiceGuy's constant declarations of undying love.)  He suggested to NiceGuy that he give it his best shot on Valentine's Day.  If that failed to move me, then NiceGuy should knock it off and go back to being just friends.  NiceGuy agreed and came up with his plan.  The people that ambushed me only agreed to do it if NiceGuy promised to keep his part of the bargain. 

It was the sweetest and most romantic thing anyone has ever done for me.  Unfortunately, I was not interested.  At the end of the day, I sat down with NiceGuy and explained to him again that I was just not interested in him as a boyfriend.  I also told him that what he had done was the most romantic thing ever and that I truly did appreciate his effort.  The poor man finally got it.  And yes, we did remain friends after that.

I ran into him about 10 years later.  He was happily married to the woman of his dreams and they had two children.  At that time I was happily married to DH, the only man for me.  But I guess I'll always have a soft spot for NiceGuy and his weirdly romantically unromantic Valentine's Day caper.


Feb 11, 2012

Bluebird of Happiness

I completely finished my birdie ornament.  This is "Bluebird of Christmas Happiness" by MDesigns from the 2008 JCS Christmas issue, page 73.  It is stitched with DMC on a piece of sky-colored hand-dyed Jobelan I had in my stash.  I finished it using a four-inch round finishing form.


Feb 8, 2012

A finished ornament

DH and I found the Super Bowl enjoyable.  We liked it that the Giants won.  It's not that we're big Giants fans, it's just that we don't really like the Patriots all that much.  

I stitched and finished a Christmas ornament.  It's from the booklet "A Cowboy Christmas" by FTL Designs (OOP).  It is rather eclectic.  I was rooting around in my fabric stash and noticed some light blue gingham Graziano linen and decided to stitch on that.  Then I decided to stitch with GAST and RGTB and the effect is "interesting."  

I plan to finish all of these Texas Christmas ornaments using round finishing forms and backing them with denim fabric while using red suede leather lacing for cording.  The hanger is hemp jewelry cording.  (And there's not two of them, the sun is out and cast a shadow.)

I'm currently stitching on another Christmas ornament that is not Texas-themed.  While I was rooting around in my pile of to-be-stitched working copies, I came across an ornament I'd intended to stitch in 2008.  Since it involved a lot of blue floss, I decided to stitch it.  I'll post a picture when it's done.


Feb 5, 2012

A neighborly visit

Emma was barking her fool head off one morning recently, so I went outside to see what had her so riled up.  It was a rather large turtle!

When we lived in Oklahoma, a box turtle had the misfortune of wandering into our fenced yard.  Emma didn't bother to bark at him, she just gnawed on him and tried to pick him up.  I found the poor dog-slobber covered turtle trying to hide in the corner on our back porch.  He wasn't hurt, just well-slobbered, so I took him outside the fence safely away from a dog who thought he was an interactive chew toy.  He never came back.

We plan to watch the Super Bowl tonight with a large bowl of homemade guacamole and some chips as is our Super Bowl tradition.  Go Giants!


Feb 3, 2012

A finish in an ongoing WIP

I finished the February block of "Crabby All Year."  I disliked part of the design so I had to "fix" it.  The design is supposed to be a trash can with love thrown away in it.  To me it looked like a badly rendered old-fashioned soda glass with weird-colored glop in it.  After closer inspection, I figured out it was in reality a badly rendered or heavily stylized metal trash can.  So I "fixed" it and stitched it my way.

Now that I am finished with February's block two days into February, I have to decide what to stitch on next.  Another Texas Christmas ornament?  Do I put in time on "that durn flag"?  Or do I stitch on "Bone Cheeks"?