Monday, August 30, 2004

Still Plugging Along

Woke up this morning and added more to my ever growing chart inventory. Current count is 850 - stopped because it is a nice round number. Still have all my Lizzie Kates to add - this list only has 39 and I know I have over a hundred. Now do you believe me when I tell you it is a sickness??? If I had 850 pairs of shoes, or purses, or any other thing, people would be talking behind my back saying I "had a problem". But us stitchers tend to encourage this behavior, which is part of the problem. Anytime I mention that I have enough stash for several lifetimes, people say "Oh, honey, me too!". So, are we all nutcases???

Didn't stitch as much as I had hoped this weekend because my finger, even though it feels better is still tender and something as skinny as a needle really bothers me. Didn't start Treat Time either, just stitched a little on my RRs.

It's back to work this morning, and as much as I enjoy what I do, there's a low level groan about it. I managed to forget this weekend all I have pending but this morning my mind is bringing it all back to the front.

Today's feature of the day is
European Cross Stitch. I really don't want to feature stores on my blog - and I'm not getting anything for sending traffic there in case you are wondering - but as one of a handful of places that is licensed to sell Martina Weber's Chatelaine designs, the site is worth visiting. I am currently a member of Mystery VI - not stitching it, but am part of the group and am getting parts of the design. If you are not familiar with this designer, you are really missing out on some awesome designs. One of these years I am going to do Convent's Herbal Garden and Knotgarden - they are just amazing!!!

Stitcher's Question of the Week is : Do you feel cross stitching requires patience? Tricky question. Yes and No. Yes in the sense that it requires hours to stitch even the simplest of designs, and because it's not an activity you can rush through or do mindlessly - you have to be careful or you will lose count. Yes also in the sense that it is something you have to wait for and that requires perserverance. No in the sense that since it is something I enjoy, there's no suffering involved. Except for some pieces that have made me want to pull my hair out. Patience implies a resolve in the face of adversity. I don't view my stitching as something onerous, but as pleasurable.

Sunday, August 29, 2004


Yesterday I spent time thinking about how many charts I had and that I really didn't know how many - it would be good to have a number to get an idea. I think we tend to underestimate the number of charts we have since you can put away a whole lot of them in a small place. So this morning I woke up and went looking for some software that would help me catalog my inventory, and I looked high and low and was not able to find any to my liking. I have heard others comment on The Stash Can, but when I went to the site it had not been updated in two years. Thanks, but no thanks.

So I was really thinking of doing something in Access, but I really don't know how many different fields I was going to want, so I went the Excel route instead, since it's so easy to import from it into Access. I brought out some of my binders and simply started flipping the pages, entering designer name, pattern name, Main Category, Secondary Category, and Notes. Two hours later, I had entered 409 charts; by time I called it quits, it had swelled to 737 and I'm nowhere close to being finished. I think I might need a business license to have this many.

My Dad showed up and I had promised to help him move a bed bed to his house because he needs to replace his. It was a heck of an ordeal, especially since it's 100 degrees today. I just now got back and rembered that I hadn't put in an entry to my blog. I believe that discipline is 99% of success, so here I am.

Today's site of the day is
Cross Stitch Corner, a site I had been to before but was not aware that it had some very specific information. If you click on Cross Stitch Information, you will find a wealth of instructions for working various charts. I will definetely be back when I stitch Drawn Thread's Random Thoughts and Sanctuary.

Saturday, August 28, 2004

Stitching Saturdays!

Finally, a day where I can stitch! My finger is better - not 100%, but certainly enough to stitch. Today I had planned to start "Treat Time" by Lizzie Kate but have two impediments. The first one is that WDW Lucky didn't come in last week, so I am short a thread and I don't want to stitch it if I can't finish it. The second is that I haven't been able to stitch all week and am behind on Round Robins and the Sampler Gameboard for this week.

I am a stash addict. Stash is my kryptonite - it makes me weak and I cannot resist. I was looking for pictures of future projects to put up on
my website and I was finding images from online stores, and of course, I ended up buying something. On top of the three charts I got off eBay this week, and another order I placed this week for charts on sale. I think this brings the weekly total addition to my stash to 9 charts, one magazine, and the BHG calendar for 2004. Do the math folks, 11 items times 52 weeks is 572 items a year. I'm doing good if I can stitch 40-50 projects a year. I am sick. Sick I tell ya! Somewhere there has to be a support group for this type of behavior. I don't compulsively buy anything else. Just stash. Never mind that I have enough for several lifestyles. I seriously need to get my head examined. So today's feature of the day is a cute page I found that let's know know if you are a cross stitch addict. I can't seem to find a group or page anywhere to help if with this specific behavior, if you do, let me know.

In world news, Dubya finally admitted to having
"miscalculated" on Iraq. Duh! You think? He should have gone back and read what his father said about the first Iraq war. So now, of course, the GOP wants Bush to draw the attention off Iraq during the convention. I don't know what they want to distract us with. I don't think rising poverty will cut it and there really isn't a whole lot that he's done that is positive. Besides, NOT mentioning Iraq, and our future plans there, would be like declaring it an unimportant issue and ignoring the huge sacrifice so many American service members and their families are making to support Bush's dumb plan. Two U.S. servicemen die per day and about 16 are injured, 80% of which are 29 and under. This is not something you can sweep under the rug and pretend isn't there. I think if people asked themselves "Am I better off this year than I was three years ago?", Bush wouldn't have a chance in hell of getting elected. But most of us are too busy and too tired from working our butts off to sustain an increasingly lesser lifestyle to reflect. Maybe that was his plan all along.

Friday, August 27, 2004

Latest Issue

I bought two magazines Tuesday night: the latest issues of Stoney Creek and Just Cross Stitch. Both were slightly disappointing. I like the funky purse on the cover of JCS, and while I would never carry such a thing - too impractical - I view it as an alternate way of displaying cross stitch. I am sending away for the Monsterbubble freebie that Wichelt is offering, "Home is where my bed is". That freebie is the ONLY thing in that magazine I would stitch. I bought JCS out of habit more than anything else and I'm starting to think that if they keep with the "Precious Moment" patterns, this will be the LAST year I buy them all.

Stoney Creek was better. I love the afghan they are doing this year. I don't know that I would ever stitch such a large piece, but I enjoy the fantasy of thinking that I would and that others would ooh and ahh over it. But, like JCS, there is nothing in the magazine I would actually stitch - except for the "Home Town" patterns, but it is better because there are other patterns I might stitch for my future grandchildren, whereas there aren't any patterns in JCS I would stitch, unless my taste changes. There was a pattern for a "Mourning Sampler" in Stoney Creek and it got me thinking that I would like to stitch something to honor my grandmother. It really bums me out that I never stitched something for her - I was either to busy with kids or too sick - either way, I am thinking that perhaps I should stitch something to honor her, since I wasn't able to stitch something for her while she was here.

Today's feature of the day is the
CATS Cruise which will be January 23-30, 2005 from Miami aboard Royal Caribbean's Explorer of the Seas. Teaching will be Lorri Birmingham, Liz Turner Diehl, and Marilyn Vredevelt. I don't know if these folks know that the Caribbean is at its worst during the winter, but they are probably snowbirds who wouldn't know the difference and are just trying to get away from the cold. (Isn't it Jelly Fish season too???)

Last but not least, did y'all notice the news yesterday that the Census Bureau put out? They issued their yearly report and it showed that the ranks of the uninsured and the impoverished grew in 2003 for the third consecutive year while incomes stayed level. Level being a euphemism for FLAT, as in incomes did NOT increase. Gee, I wonder who's been in office for three years...

I posted the latest scan of my Sampler Gameboard to my website. I added some pictures last night too.

Thursday, August 26, 2004

Website Up!

Well, since I am still injured from trying to fix the A/C last night I finally put the website up (see, I TOLD you if I bought the hosting I would not let it go to waste!). I am at Bravenet - for now. No commitment and I paid through PayPal so they can't charge me without my approval. The site is a work in progress and yesterday was just Day 1 of it, so stay tuned folks. I am hoping to give it 20 mins a day, don't want it intruding into my stitching time and, besides, this is what I do all day anyways and what I stitch to get away from.

Today's feature of the day is
Dragonfly Stitches. I am in a blackwork kick lately, so you will have to excuse me until it passes. She has some nice freebies and I just learned a Yahoo! group with more freebies. I placed an order for a blackwork kit with Cross Stitch Station in Miami when I was down there on a "field trip" with my friends from the Cross Stitch Cupboard SAL. It's coming from the UK, I think, and I guess I better check on it because it's been weeks. In my stash I have a pattern called "Miranda" from Fanta Cat Designs. It is a 20" long mermaid done mostly in blackwork. I just realized that she didn't make the list of projects. I have so much stash it's obscene.

Wednesday, August 25, 2004

Tuesdays are My Favorite Days

Had a great time last night at my LNS! I really love the SALs, it is always a fun time. I picked up my buddy Orrell 'cause she recently had surgery and had a blast chatting with her driving up there and back. All in all, a great night. (Even though Anita didn't share a story)

I can't go out to my
LNS and NOT buy something, but I was very good and only bought two magazines (latest Stoney Creek and Just Cross Stitch), two kits for my buddy Debbi (because what I ordered for her had not come in) and a skein of WDW Louisiana Hot Sauce. I didn't need it, I just liked the name. Once upon a time, I used to carry a list of WDW and GAST threads I did not have and I would buy 1-3 skeins each time I went to my LNS to build up my thread stash. I got away from that and now I have so many of these threads I can't do it from memory any more.

So, my feature of the day today is:
Stitcher's Organizer. She has a lot of lists there and even though they might not be completely updated, it's a cinch to do so in Word, or any other word processing software. For the latest colors, visit Weeks Dye Works and Gentle Art's websites. And while we are featuring threads, let's not forget Crescent Colours (I have yet to use them, but they have a wonderful sheen to them), Caron Collection, and Needle Necessities.

While at my
LNS, I was sad to hear that they struggle so much and work so hard. Karen, one of the owners, was mentioning that there were days like yesterday where it would have been more profitable to keep the store closed and that they make up all their deficits of running the store throughout the year in the last quarter with xmas shopping. She also mentioned that it was not unusual for her to be working up to 11 or 12 each night. I don't know what we would do if we did not have a place to meet and they are so generous to keep their doors open until late and give us a place to hang out each week. So, for now, I am placing a link to them on my side bar. Their website is a work in progress, I have offered to help them maintain it and make changes to it, and the will take me up on it hopefully soon, I really think there's a lot of business they are missing out on because the site is not being tended to.

Tuesday, August 24, 2004

Injured While Trying to Stay Cool

Please forgive me if I don't type much today. I was injured last night trying to save myself from a hot house. I got home around 6 to a house that was still over 85 degrees AND the air conditioner was still running. So I turned it off and called our a/c guy again, but he wasn't answering his cell. This is South Florida. We all die without a/c. Knowing it was a life or death emergency, I started calling places out of the yellow pages. Realizing that they would charge at least $65 to come out, when our unit is still under warranty, I decided to check the unit before I dragged someone out here for nothing. When I opened it up to see the coils, I saw that they were all frozen up. Looked like one of those old freezers.

So I took a hair dryer to the coils, melted all the ice off, opened the unit and there was a thick layer of ice over the fins. I ran the fan of the air conditioner while it was still open after I had melted a little of that ice to help it melt from both sides, since the house was hot. I kept checking back on it, and I could remove chunks of ice from the fins that was coming loose. Trying to push some of the ice off, I sliced my right index finger on the fins. And so, I became injured. By 7pm, all the ice had melted off, and the a/c was working again. I took a nice cold shower because by then I was dripping in sweat from working on the a/c in an 85 degree + house.

So, I wasn't able to stitch last night because my stitching finger is bandaged and I really can't type all that fast either. Last night I went by a friend's house to pick up an afghan we are working on for one of the owners of our LNS. It is all done in red and I will take a picture of it after I finish my part. We all meet on Tuesdays - which is today, YIPEE!! - and stitch from 6-8. It's a fun group and I very much enjoy going. Today I will bring my headless angel to stitch.

Stitchers Question of the Week this week is: What would you most like your favourite designer to design next? Well, it depends which favorite designer you are referring to. I love
Drawn Thread and I would love for them to do a beach/nautical/lighthouse pattern or a patriotic design. I'm really into those. I also love Prairie Schooler, Birds of a Feather, Twisted Threads, Little House of Needlework, JBW, and of course Lizzie Kate, Bent Creek, The Trilogy and Heart in Hand, among others. I would love Twisted Threads to do some designs about the workplace. I think those would be really fun with their twisted sense of humor! (Hope they are listening!) And, I guess those ten links I just gave you are my daily feature. Killed two birds with one stone - got to, I am typing with out my right index finger.

Monday, August 23, 2004

Monday, again? NO!!!

I managed to stitch quite a bit yesterday and finish the Round Robin that was giving me trouble the day before. I was able to find where I went off and fix it, so today I have two more RRs to mail out. Yipee!! Not only that, but I am COMPLETELY finished with one of the RRs and it can come off the list. My goal this year was to cut down the number of RRs I am in. I started the year with being part of a dozen and right now that number has been pared down to five and by the end of this week, hopefully I will knock off another one. I have some large projects I plan to stitch next year and tons of projects I have not been able to start because I was so busy stitching for RRs.

I watched the season finale of Dead Zone and it did not disappoint, however it was predictable in the sense that I anticipated that they would revive the Armageddon theme that ended last year's season and began this one. I would have liked them to have had at least one or two episodes on that theme this year (besides those at the beginning of the season) because, frankly, I have lost interest in that part of the storyline and don't think they will probably resolve it until they get ready to wrap up of the show. I got better things to wonder about. Like which twin will get evicted from Big Brother 5.

In case you missed the announcement last week, today is the day that time-and-a- half for overtime dies. They had the audacity to call this piece of fat cat legislation "FairPay". Who does this affect? Just about anyone. Techies. Nurses. Administrative personnel. Professionals. Executives. Anyone getting paid on a "salary basis". Which means that employers can switch their employees from hourly to salary and instantly make them exempt from overtime. What surprises me the most is that no one seems to care. There is no outrage.

Today's feature of the day is Cross Stitch Pattern and Fabric viewer. Hands down a site I can spend far too much time playing to see how different designs look on different fabrics. Whoever thought of this is a genius. It does give you a pretty good idea of how a design will look on different colors. I don't think it can substitute for a good ol' floss toss, but it will narrow the field down considerably and give you some options that perhaps you didn't think about.

Sunday, August 22, 2004

Almost Ripped!

Have you ever been working on a project, and suddenly you realize you are off by one stitch, and you go over and over and over and over it and can't, for the life of you, figure out how it happened? It's been a while, but it happened to me last might working on an RR which will for now remain nameless to protect the owner from freaking out. I put it aside and went on to the next one. Maybe next time I pick it up I will be able to figure it out with fresh, no longer angry, eyes.

Today's cross stitch feature of the day is a Canadian LNS . Not for it's selection, though it has some charts and designers that aren't as popular in America, and by the way, I wish it would put its designer listing alphabetically. If you click on "Galerie" you will see that it has had some very interesting freebies, contests on Postal Cross Stitch Art, and even a gallery, for what I guess must be some of their customers. It is really interestig to see what some folks came up with. Freebies haven't been updated since May. Maybe we should all write them and get them to post a new one.

Saturday, August 21, 2004

No time to breathe!

I barely got any stitching done yesterday. I got home at 8pm and was so tired. I did force myself to put a few stitches in an RR. More out of discipline than anything else.

The season finale of Monk was not as good as I expected. I guess instead of creating a cliff hanger with the story line, they created it with their commercials for it. Is Monk cured? Well, if you watched the show, you know he's not and he'll be back for another season, but as far as the story line goes, nothing is left "hanging". I think Dead Zone will do a better job with their season finale.

I have promised myself that today will be the day I choose my website host. I may not put up the site this weekend, or next, but the clock will start ticking and I know I will have SOMETHING up in a month. I want to choose one that will give me a good price, but not force me to pay a year up front. Who knows if I will still be interested six months from now.

Blog feature of the day is: because they have some old freebies that are no longer available on the internet. Also they actually have a blackwork collection and it's pretty decent I would say. I think I would like to get those balconies for myself.

Thursday, August 19, 2004

Is this what lucid is like?

Today I removed two WIPs from my rotation. No, I did not finish anything. I realized today that I really don't want to stitch the Marquoir story or the Anne-les-petit-croix Mystery Garden. Not because I don't think these are good projects - they are - I just rather work on something else. Isn't that what they say? Good is the enemy of Best? Something like that.
Maybe I butchered it, but I probably did a better job than our President who last week told the world his adminstration would never cease looking for ways to harm the US. What an idiot.
So now my rotation goes like this:
1. MLI Angel ornament
2. RR
3. Dog for charity quilt
4. RR
5. Beach scene for charity quilt
6. RR
7. DT's Sampler Gameboard
8. RR
9. Santa Huck Towel
Waiting in the wings to be incorporated in this rotation, in order of percentage finished are:
1.The Rose Garden (from old CS&CC)
2.Lighthouse (Dimensions pattern)
3.Mystery she wrote sampler (Curtis Boehringer)
4.Who's the Boss (from a Stoney Creek book)

I am sending Maidens of the Seasons - Spring out after all. I was going to stitch on everyone's RR and not send mine out, but what they hey - I might as well. I just discovered that one of my RRs is OVER!

Sunday, August 15, 2004

Rainy Days in a Sunny City

It's been raining the better part of this week so far. Not complaining as I LOVE the rain.
Last night I did not feel like stitching at all. Happens sometimes.

Tuesday I went to my LNS to the SAL and Houses of Hawk Run Hollow had come in for me. YAY!! I am obviously not a StRIPper.

I stitched on the Sampler Gameboard because I hadn't touched it in a month. Yes, it is ex-rotatio, but it was also the only piece I had packaged and ready to go to take. I decided to go to the SAL at the last minute. Had to force myself to go.

Today I will get back to my rotation. Whatever the next project is.

I also scanned current WIPs so I will remember they exist. LOL!!!

Wednesday, August 11, 2004

Morphing into an old biddie at warp speed

Nick left yesterday and I've been weepy ever since. I so hate saying goodbye to him. I think I am turning into my grandmother. She'd get weepy everytime I left too. I didn't understand what the big deal was. I do now.

Went to my LNS's SAL again. It is so much fun! There is a new, local designer and I bought one of her charts with the embellishement pack - looking so forward to stitching this! I also bought two Halloween Shepherd's Bush charts and one Lizzie Kate halloween Snippet (Got Treats), a magnetic needleholder (a cute puppy face), and a surprise for my good buddy Debbi. Spent about $55 (the new designer's chart was $20.50 )

Then, as I was driving home I wondered why the heck did I spend so much on stuff I wasn't going to be able to stitch any time soon, but then I got home, fondled my new stash, and I was all better. LOL!

However this morning I woke up and some of my first thoughts were that I should probably put up on ebay charts that I know I won't be able to stitch. (Gosh, this mental health thing sucks - I may just go off my meds!)

My rotation needs to be adjusted to nine pieces because those are the slots I have and I just want to think that it's Tuesday so I should be stitching on the Sampler Gameboard. At least until I get caught up and the rotation changes to a workday/weekend rotation.

I worked some more on the Sampler Gameboard - my Tuesday night SAL project. Finished another square and a half.

I was at Barnes and Noble yesterday and on the journal shelf I found a journal book called "40 Days and 40 Nights" it is a companion to another book called "List Yourself". I didn't have time to look for the book, but I think it may be someting that might interest me. I know

I am an INTP, and introspective by nature, but since I am in this whole improvement kick...

Sunday, August 8, 2004

Sanity has been overhyped

I don't think I'm liking this mental health thing. I just did an inventory of my kitted projects and they total over 115. Taking into account their sizes and time needed to stitch, I am totally booked for the next 5 years.

I was happier when I didn't know. Now I have stash indigestion again - pass the pepto!

Saturday, August 7, 2004


I went through all the RRs I had.  I am sending Lily's Bent Creek on for two reasons.  The first is that she is expecting us to stitch a full Bent Creek Row sampler EACH - way too big.  The second is that she ruined my Seasons RR and stitched horribly on my teacup RR. Bonnie probably has had to rip what she stitched of my Bent Creek RR anyway and and I don't feel I owe her. 

The Monthly Mania RRs are being forwarded because I dropped out.

I am mailing Lily's Teacup sampler to Jorja - finished stitching it.

An Alphabet RR to Carolyn - don't remember whose - the Noah's Ark Alphabet - finished stitching it.

I don't have Carolyn's piece from my SanMan RR - I have sent her an email asking about it.  If she doesn't respond, I will send her Alphabet RR unstitched and we'll be even.

I don't know what is going on with Shepherd's Bush RR - worried that it will suffer the same fate as the SanMan one - sent an email to Bonnie asking about it.  I wasn't able to get rid of any RR without stitching on it - just Lily's.

Back in February I did a tally of the projects I had that I wanted to stitch - they were so many that I was completely overwhelmed!  I am NOT going to become a StRIPper, but I do want to make a listing of kitted projects and projects for which I already have fabric.  Then maybe I will plug them all into an Access database and assign them priorities.  Going to ponder this tonight.

It's now 10pm.  RJ and Nick are off the the Hard Rock Cafe Casino.  Rick and I are turning in for the night.    See y'all tomorrow.


Friday, August 6, 2004

If I could spit, I would

I am spitting mad. I just got my SanMan RR today. I sent out 6 pieces. I got TWO back and only ONE fabric. No explanation as to what happened to the other three fabrics let alone the unstitched projects.

I am packing up the RRs that I have here and sending them on. I will only keep some I feel I ought to stitch on like Norma's and Bonnie's among a very few others, but everything else is being mailed tomorrow. Took myself off all future RRs too.

Nick is here. My precious baby boy. He's so sweet. We were looking at an old dining room table and discussing how to convert it into a work of folk art. We got some pretty good ideas, but this visit won't be long enough to implement them. We will plan to do it when he comes home for the holidays in December because he will take two weeks leave. Also, it won't be raining like it is now.

Sunday, August 1, 2004

New Month, New Goals

Today I settled on a rotation with a heavy emphasis on my RR commitments. The list is posted on the Rotation Stitchers on EzBoard and is as follows:

I am going with a daily rotation of 10 items with every other day working on a Round Robin piece until I get caught up on my RRs. I have about 9 stitching opportunities of about 4 hours per week. The evenings of each work day and two time slots on each weekend day so I should get through most of my rotation every week, which I hope will provide me with the variety I crave.

So basically it is going something like this:

1. EMS Pig Baby (for charity quilt)
2. RR
3. Dog for charity quilt
4. RR
5. Beach scene for charity quilt
6. RR
7. DT's Sampler Gameboard
8. RR
9. Marquoir story

Waiting in the wings to be incorporated in this rotation, in order of percentage finished are:

1.MLI Angel ornament
2.Santa Huck Towel (Design Connection book)
3.The Rose Garden (from old CS&CC)
4.Lighthouse (Dimensions pattern)
5.Anne-les-petites-croix Mystery Garden
6.Mystery she wrote sampler (Curtis Boehringer)
7.Who's the Boss (from a Stoney Creek book)
8. Maidens of the Seasons - Spring

Each to be incorporated to replace the charity squares. I am starting today. It is the evening and I am off to work on an RR, having already worked on the Pig Baby this morning.