Wednesday, July 30, 2008


I leave Pasadena tomorrow. I wish I had more time to walk around Old Pasadena to shop without having my male co-worker with me. It'd be a little awkward going into Victoria's Secret or the many swimsuit shops with him in tow and somehow, I don't manage to get into these shops when I am home. It's nice here and if I had to live in SoCal, I guess I'd have to pick the area around Old Pasadena for the sole reason that it is city-esque. I love city life and can't imagine being far from a city or a large body of water. But I already miss home. Things have been very busy and non-stop since I've been down here! I get back to my room about 930pm and only have enough time to check email and get ready for bed. Not much stitching, tv watching, reading, emailing or exercising has been happening the last few days. Ugh! Not to mention that this training I attended will be a waste. There is no way the projects will be ready for processing in the next four weeks. There is way more work than anyone anticipated and we are not prepared to tackle so much in such a short period of time. We'll be heading back to work with bad news for the head honcho.

The most exciting thing so far this trip was the 5.4 magnitiude earthquake in SoCal on Tuesday. I don't know why I always signify earthquakes with San Francisco. All of California experiences them but I guess I forget. I've lived within the state my entire life and the only one that made me jump out of my skin was the Loma Prieta earthquake in 1989. I was 14 years old back then...seems like a lifetime ago. The earthquake on Tuesday was strong and it surprised me more for the fact that I left what I consider earthquake mecca to only feel an earthquake. There were a couple of very sharp jolts and light shaking. At first, I thought there was some renovation happening on the level above our conference room before I realized that the speaker stand was rocking back and forth. I knew I was safe where I was sitting. Many people in my training class were shaken up and requested to be let outside so we headed out to lunch early. The moment we walked outside, everyone seemed to be outside on the phone telling their loved ones they were ok but were still standing under the awning. Geez, people!!! If you are worried about the building falling down on your head, you need to get entirely out of the way of said building. Go cross the street and make sure there isn't anything that will fall on you! It seems like common sense to me but maybe all those earthquake drills and working for a public safety agency drilled this into my head more than others would know? I don't know. All in all...strong big deal. No one was hurt and there were no major damages so it was just a reminder that we live in California and earthquake are just one of those things that happen every once in a while.

Monday, July 28, 2008

Random Bullet Points

Hello from Pasadena! I'm away on work travel this week so blogging may be more sporadic than usual. I already miss my fog. What is up with the smog in Southern California?!

The weekend was a usual. Why does it pass so fast? I made it to the Frida Kahlo exhibit at SFMOMA and it was great! The museum and the exhibit was so crowded though. I think everyone had the same idea on Saturday. I am happy I was able to see the exhibit as it usually occurs to me after the exhibit has already left. Now I just need to get to the DeYoung soon to see Chihuly. I went with a guy I recently met and still can't get over how shy he is. He'd make a good friend but not really a romantic interest. I like my guys a little bold and assertive. I have no idea how I've become a magnet for these shy, pansy-ish guys. Dating is extremely dismal and grim at the moment.

I went and met a friend for dinner at Burma Superstar on Saturday night. If there a day that this place is not crowded?! We waited over an hour for a table! But you know what, it was so worth it. I love this place. My favorite again was the wok tossed calamari. Tender calamari, napa cabbage, chili, vinegar....mmmmm, yummy! I need to get to this place more often so I can slowly make my way through the menu. And better yet, I had enough noodles and rice leftover for lunch the next day. I love leftovers!

I don't have an updated picture of my snappers since I left my camera at home. I managed to finish January and the surrounding border and have slowly made my way to February. As I sat in my hotel room, counting and winding down for the evening, I discovered a counting error all the way at the beginning on my heart! Grrr! I have to frog the entire thing! Looks like I'll have my work cut out for me later. But for's time to head to dreamland.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

January Snowman

Just a quick post to share some stitchy progress although this isn't the best snap. I managed to pull out all of the WDW Bark that I had used for the border and have started the border over with GAST Dried Thyme. I like it A LOT better! I still am not as far along in the border as I was with the Bark and I still have a long way to go seeing as I have to get through 12 months! Hopefully, I'll have some time to continue the border and get started on February.

Brillante Weblog Award

I heard from Carol R. a couple of days ago that she nominated me for the Brillante Weblog Award. I am honored. Thanks Carol! I love that this little award is in Spanish too. How fun!

Here are the rules for the award:

1. Put the logo on your blog
2. Add a link to the person who awarded you
3. Nominate at least 7 other blogs
4. Add links to those blogs on yours
5. Leave a message for your nominees on their blogs

Here are my nominees. Most are stitcher blogs...people who have inspired me to be more creative over the last few months by seeing what they create and pushing me to do finishes I've never done before. One is a dear friend new to blogging who I think has caught the blogging bug worse than me! I will not message most as I think most have already been bombarded by similar or the same award but I wanted to acknowledge that I think they are brilliante and that I love checking out their blogs.

1. Carol R.
2. Edgar
3. Carol S.
4. Yuko
5. Staci
6. Natasha
7. Ann Marie

Today, I decided to play hooky from work. I've been feeling very stressed and frazzled and just wanted some quite time to myself. It was also a good excuse to call in sick after all the excitement last night...or shall I say this morning. Around 1am, I heard shouting outsde my building. It's quite late for anyone to be shouting but I live one block away from a bar that can get busy late at night. I figured these folks were drunk and would move on. I was getting ready to go to sleep. I was wired and just can't get to sleep at a decent hour. As I turned off the lights, I looked out the window to make sure the shouters had really moved on. I see a man standing outside my building and a woman lying down on the ground. Weird but I had the feeling she was being a depressive drunk and the man didn't know what to do and was waiting for her to snap out of it. At least he didn't just leave her there. I decided that I would wait 10 minutes to see if they were still there before I either went downstairs or called the police to do a drive-by. A few minutes later...I hear the 911 response. One fire engine, one ambulance and three police cars come rushing to my building. Geez, sirens that late at night are liable to give anyone a fricking heart attack. It took me some time to fall asleep after all that excitement! Today, I relished in staying in on a workday. I watched some Sopranos, took my time getting ready, went and got a relaxing manicure and pedicure and went to my parents to drop off my mom's car and a friend came to get me to drop me off back at home. Tonight, I'll head into the city and try a new restaurant and see Cabaret. It should be a fun night! I wish I could play a hooky day more often. This is nice!!

910 Smakaroos

I finally got my car back from the mechanic yesterday afternoon and the damage was 910 smakaroos for:

3 radiator hoses
1 new radiator
1 new water pump
6 hose clamps
4 hours of labor

Ouch! I hope that the car appreciates this little makeover and that this is the only drama fit it has this year. As it is, I think my travel plans may be on hold for October since I should be focusing on debt reduction instead of travel. This little drama fit did not help my debt reduction goal.

I am happy to have my car back though. I felt nervous driving my mom's immaculate car. I'm much more comfortable in my old little jalopy.

Monday, July 21, 2008

Weekend This and That

So the weekend flew by. I don't understand how each week, it seems to pass by faster than the week before. Must be a sure sign that I am getting old. I always heard that I should take advantage of time when I'm young because time passes faster the older you get. I'm seeing that saying is true and I'm scared how fast tgime will be passing when I'm 10, 20, 30 years older than I am now!

Highlights to the weekend

I hit the Anniversary Sale at Nordstrom and managed to find some decent jeans (that didn't cost over $50) on sale as well as a comfy warm sweater jacket and some funky wedge heel shoes. The goal will be to not fall while wearing said cute shoes!

I went to Davies Symphony Hall to see Big Bad Voodoo Daddy in concert. I was excited to see them since they are a fun band but there are also some bittersweet memories intertwined with this group. This was the band that was playing during my first date with The Ex many, many moons ago. I've kept the lines of communication open with The Ex for many years to remain friends but about nine months ago, feelings and emotions reached the brink and we haven't talked to or seen each other since. He definitely isn't the same man anymore...the one who captured my heart so long ago. Many years later, after our break up, I was left with a broken heart again and it took me some time to find myself again. I don't think we were the best couple but we were both young and it was a lot of fun. I can't ever imagine us being a couple again. We are polar opposites so there are no worries about me losing my mind and running back to him. I'm too darn smart for that. He was a pretty decent boyfriend in the beginning but an awful friend to me as the years progressed. Now it's time to make real and true friends which is harder the older you get. Anyways, I digress, there are emotions tied to this group but they did such a good performance! It was so much fun and if I had been sitting in orchestra and had brought a dancing partner instead of a girl friend, I would have been down there dancing! I was disappointed that the Hall was only half full! They are great! I wonder if it's because swing music has fallen out of the graces of many or if people are being careful with their pennies because of the recession (come now...$4.50 a gallon? Total recession). Before the show, we hit Absinthe where I indulged in my usual sidecar, a Daedalus and some scrumptious shared appetizers and strawberry shortcake. YUM!

On Sunday, I headed over to Festa Italia and checked out the goodies and the vendors. It was nice and warm outside and fun to see all the different characters and the classic cars. I was able to find a toe ring booth and got new ones since my old ones had tarnished. So now I have adorned toes again.


I managed to actually get a good amount of stitching time in since I am pretty much carless until I find out what the damage is to my car. So I plugged away on my January Snapper block and started in on the border so I can do the border as I go instead of waiting until the very end. The pattern calls for WDW Bark. I'm working the border and I keep rechecking the pattern and it says Bark but why does Bark look so dark? I've done half the border and am really not liking the Bark at all. It's too dark for a viney-leafy pattern. So the frog is coming out and I have to frog out all the border that I've done. Gah! I should have followed my initial instinct. I probably won't have time to tackle that until the end of the week. I will replace Bark with GAST Dried Thyme. Since I can't stand how it looks with the dark border there are no snaps of my progress. Not to mention I haven't done the french knots yet so the poor snowman is eyeless!

With all the computer hoopla last weekend, I think my Tivo got bumped off my wireless router because it keeps giving me a message about program info. Seeing as I am the most un-techy person out there, I'm confused and a little freaked out at the prospect of figuring out how to get my Tivo back on the wireless router so that my program recordings go on uninteruppted. See...this is where it comes in handy to be dating a total geeky tech guy.

Friday, July 18, 2008

Broken Jalopy

In my previous post, I had mentioned taking my car in for an oil change and the mechanic guy telling me I had a potential oil and coolant leak. I figured that I would go ahead and monitor the situation. I told my apartment manager to let me know if he saw any oil or coolant left in my parking stall when I wasn't there. Then I would know what was actually leaking and how bad it might be. Well, forget monitoring the situation because 5 days later, my car is freaking out on me and I'm wondering why. I'm driving, the car is bucking and I notice that the temperature gauge is almost at H(hot) and I had better get the car off the main road. Luckily, I was only 2 blocks from home and I got there in one piece. After my initial frantic thoughts of "What the heck am I going to do?" and "What am I going to do without a car?", I go inside the building to drop off the things I was carrying and change into comfortable shoes in lieu of the 3 inch wedge sandals I was currently wearing. I ran into the apartment manager and right when I was going to tell him what was wrong, he tells me I have a coolant leak. Ummm, yea. I think I figured out that much by that point.

He comes out with me and we look at the car and the coolant reservoir was bone had been full only 5 days prior. We fill it up with water and I say that I will take it to the mechanic which is only 5 blocks away from my place. By the time I had driven four blocks, the needle was back at H...I was praying the car would make it one more block so I could give the mechanic the key and get out of what felt like a deathtrap car. When I see the mechanic, I explain the problem and he says he can't look at it til Tuesday. Tuesday!?! Geez, what do I do? I opt to leave the car there and call a friend to come pick me up and take me to my parents so I can borrow one of their cars for the next 4 or more days. I should mention that all this happened at the beginning of my lunch hour and I was supposed to be at work. By the time I got back to work, driving my mom's car, it was three hours later.

I am thankful that the car issue came to light during the day and close to home since my plan was to head into the city after work. If this had happened on the freeway, I'd have blown a vein. That would have involved traffic, the motor club and a tow truck and would have stressed me out even more.

So now my car sits at the mechanic and I am driving my mom's car...hoping that this car repair isn't severe and cost me a fortune.

Monday, July 14, 2008

Weekend Mishaps

If there was such a thing as a re-do button to start over the weekend, I would so push that button now. The weekend sucked. There were some nice points to the weekend but not many.


I got up early to go to an exercise class but drove to the wrong recreation center. By the time I figured it out, it was pointless to drive to the rigght center since I'd miss a good part of the class.

I went to get an oil change on the car and the mechanic wasn't there. I waited and decided to just leave my key and car there and have them call me when it's done. Three hours later, the mechanic is telling me that I may have an oil AND coolant leak. Great! Just what I needed. Some potentially expensive repair on my old dilapitated car. Can't really afford an expensive repair...or a new car right now. So I am worried.

I drove around to a kabillion stores looking for a storage solution for all my crafty supplies and good but cheap high thread count sheets...and found nothing. Frustrated!!

Finally got home and was dying to check emails and blogs and couldn't. Something happened with my wireless. I could connect in my "office" which is a converted closet I made into an office so is very small and claustrophobic. I don't like working in there really. I couldn't figure out what was wrong and techy computer problems make me anxious and stressed out. I asked my apartment manager to help me and he saved the day. Yay! But he lectured me about not writing important information in a place where I can find it later. Ummm, yea. The "office" is where I throw all the junk that needs sorting. There is more junk than I have time to sort through so it's a little scary in there. The whole router had to be reconfigured. Thank goodness he's techy because I may have blown a vein figuring it out on my own.

I wanted to check out art at Fabric 8 and I thought I knew where it was but apparently the store I thought was Fabric 8 was something else entirely and I was lost and confused in the Mission. It helps to look things up online before heading out of the house. Sheesh!

I had to entertain a nice, but amazingly shy guy. I wonder how I become a magnet for this type. They are nice...don't get me wrong...but I can't help wanting exciting too. The meetup wasn't bad but it wasn't great either.

Since the weekend was so crazy and I was running around looking for stuff I couldn't find, the sitching agenda got blown and I've barely worked on my January BC Snapper. It isn't even worth a snap since all I have done is the light blue border and maybe a third of the snowman. It is so boring and tedious stitching in white!!

The Cool Stuff

I met up with my friend Claire and we went to Rose's Cafe for brunch. We got there early enough that there was no wait and the potato hash and strong coffee was the perfect way to start my day. Eggs and potato make this girl very happy and I was able to sneak a couple of bites of Claire's french toast for a little bready sweetness. Everything was so good! We waked to Fort Mason and that was when I remembered I should have brought my camera to take and share pictures but I have been so scattered lately that I forgot. We were heading to the Renegade Craft Fair. It was cool to see what people create. A lot of things were cool, some were weird and some were quite original. I love looking at crafty stuff but I am choosy about what I buy since clothes are hard to pick out if you can't try them on and I am allergic to most metals in jewelry and I can make most textile related stuff so it's gotta be cool and something I can't make in order for me to pull out my wallet. I walked away with some very cute flat cards for writing notes and Claire bought a very cool cloth tote bag.

I did laundry. It's boring but having clean undies is very important!

So the mishaps far outnumbered the "cool stuff" this weekend. Where is that damn re-do button?!

Letter to the Cheater

It took me a few days to draft a short email to S, The Cheater. I didn't want to ignore him. He'd just think I had lost interest or gotten sidetracked emailing with someone else. I wanted S to know that I found him out and that if I so wanted to, I could contact his wife and rat him out as to his anticipated infidelities. So this is what I wrote...


I have strong suspicions that you are married. I didn't realize that I had to be specific in my post that only single and available men should reply to me considering the venue in which I posted is supposed to be geared towards dating and long-term relationships. Married men are supposed to be done with dating and have obviously found their long term relationship if they are wearing a wedding ring. I highly resent the fact that you have wasted my time. I am a pretty busy lady and don't have time for stupid games from unavailable men. I am looking for someone honest and true who I can feel comfortable sharing things with and that so obviously isn't you. If you are not happy within your marriage, you should definitely talk it out with your wife. Most of my friends have told me I should advise her that you are trolling on CL
but I don't need to put myself in that situation.

Please do not contact me...I don't have time to waste on married men.


So far so good. I haven't heard from him. I did, however, meet the other guy I was talking to during the weekend and he is so unbelievably shy. I'm really looking for someone who can take the lead in a relationship instead of me always being the dominant one. Lately, I don't know how I end up meeting this guys with no game, no action, no nothing. It's so amazingly frustrating and I have pretty much reached the end of my patience for this segment of my life. I feel lonely despite keeping myself really busy. I just want to meet someone I can relate to who I'm attracted to and who is attracted to me to hang out with and enjoy some fun "recreational" activities. I'm still pretty aware of what I deserve so I'm not yet willing to settle for just anyone but this waiting and being patient game is not working to my advantage. I'm going to act like an ostrich now and bury my head in the sand....

Friday, July 11, 2008

Birthday Gift for BossLady

Last night, we threw BossLady a surprise birthday bbq. I think we had her fooled until her husband drove into the parking lot and she saw all the company cars in the lot. Ack! Well, what are we to do? She was pretty surprised and happy at the bbq and there was lots of food and drink. I went home sleepy and full. Good way to end the day. I managed to whip "Woof" into a small flatfold and is what it looks like. I decided to tackle making a bow and used Vonna's tutorial. Vonna is a lifesaver with those tutorials in guiding a new finisher like me to create some cute things like Woof shown below.
Lizzie*Kate Woof Flip-It
28 count Light Mocha Cashel
Recommended threads - WDW, GAST and DMC
Finished as Flatfold

Here is the side view. I really liked the ribbon I used for the bow and the backing fabric. Can you see it? The backing fabric is a cream color with hearts, bones and pawprints. It is very cute! I did have problems joining the trim on the bottom because it began to fray at a crazy speed. I had to use lots of glue to get it back in order so now there is a little bump. But at least that is on the bottom. BossLady seemed to really like it and I also gave her some dark chocolate and strong mints as well.

Now my obligatory stitching is all done and accomplished and it's time for selfish stitching. Instead of working on Santa or Fairy Moon (like I should), I decided to start a new project, the Bent Creek Snappers. I started it this past week but have only managed the border on the January square. I'll share a snap after the weekend to show my progress as I definitely have stitching in the weekend agenda. Yay!

Oh and please keep the state's firefighters in your thoughts. California is in bad shape and my department is now in it's 5th deployment since May. I really wish that it rained in the summer here...

Happy weekend everyone!

Christmas in July Exchange From Becca

On Monday, I received a package from Becca for the Christmas in July exchange. It contained a cute mitten christmas ornament along with some goodies like christmas light trim, buttons, the Lizzie*Kate January Flip-It, some Vicki Clayton silk Perle in lovely colors and some bath beads and shower gel.
Becca, thank you for a lovely exchange! This Christmas in July Group was a cool mix of ladies.

Tuesday, July 08, 2008


I finished a small project that I have yet to transform into a cute birthday present for my boss at work. She is a huge dog fanatic and I thought that the Lizzie*Kate "Woof" Flip-it would be really cute for her. Below is a snap of the completed stitching. I think it came out very cute and I really like the combination of colors. Sorry, the snap is so wrinkled.
The Boss Lady has always commented on my stitching and how much she wishes "she can do that". I tried teaching her once but I guess trying to teach someone needlework after they've had a couple of cosmos isn't all that bright. Shoot....cosmos never stop me from stitching! Perhaps having her own piece to study will inspire her. I'm hoping to turn this into a pinkeep or a flatfold. I'll be sure to share the final product once I'm done with the transformation.

Little Hat

A few weeks ago, I got an email from my friends, The Ms, announcing that they are expecting their first baby...and it's a boy. Yay!! I love announcements like that even though babies scare the bejeezus out of me. I love babies and think they are totally cute...when they are quiet and clean. But that's besides the point. Yay...The Ms are having a baby and when I get this type of announcement, the knitting needles must come out! So I got to making one of my little infamous umbrella trim baby hats. I had hoped to give it to them personally when I saw them a couple of weeks ago but seeing I had just started the hat the night before, I just couldn't meet that self-imposed deadline. I whipped it up soon after and sent this to them in the mail.
I received an email from Mr. M saying that they received the hat and that they really liked it. Oh, that made me really happy. Mrs. M thinks the hat was very cute but I think the size of the hat was an eye-opening reality check for Mr. M. I hope it didn't scare him too much. A baby hat or as he called it, "little hat" is pretty darn small.

Since The Ms don't live that far, I may have to make Baby M my guinea pig for baby knitting patterns. I like making baby things but since I don't have a baby, I'm not sure how accurate these patterns translate to the average baby. Maybe Baby M can be my baby model!

Congratulations to The Ms. May November bring them much joy.

Monday, July 07, 2008

Dating Purgatory

Ha! This will make my old friends friends who tuned in for the crazy dating stories way back when, when I was truly a serial dater. Now I'm a recovering serial dater who still keeps her big toe in the dating pool but would rather be at home blasting music and stitching. Apparently, all I'm missing are the six cats but whatever. Don't my friends know I'd rather have six dogs than one cat?! Oh shoot, maybe I shouldn't have said that...there are a lot of stitchers out there with cats. Sorry...I didn' t mean anything bad about the cats.

Since I've taken my profile down from Match, I've tried not to think about dating and it's been pretty successful what with all the exchange deadlines and exercise classes I've been taking. I get home and barely have time to eat, shower, answer my friends' emails, stitch and blog once in a while. Dating Not totally into it. On the nights when I get antsy because I am yet again at home on a Friday or Saturday night, I will slum it and post an ad on that list there that our dear friend Craig manages. I've met people who have met off of Craig's list as well as Match and they are great couples. Apparently, I must be doing something wrong and exuding vibes that attract all sorts of guys than the type I would actually be attracted to.

That's not to say that there haven't been some decent meetups off of Craig's list. M was a match up through Craig but in the end, he was a self-centered pansy and drove me crazy. Yea, I said pansy...he was. The last guy I met through Craig was another M. He has no car which means that I've been the "guy" dropping him off at home. Not my idea of ideal. Not to mention he keeps suggesting that we meet up when I'm in the city which doesn't really work for me since I head to the city because I ALREADY have plans. Plus, he sounds like a muppet. I'm still trying to figure out which one. Ha! And I thought my voice was unique!

Off the same post, I was emailed by this guy, S. S sounded cool...seemed to like the same things I did and even admitted to being an old soul. In his last email to me, he sent me a link to his fairly political (i.e. boring) blog. I like to remain as anonymous as possible for as long as I can so my correspondance never has my last name nor any way for it to track back to me. If I feel ready and safe, I will share that with the potential suitor later. So no worries friends, I am a very careful online dater because of situations like this. Because there are crazy people (like S) and cautious people (like me). I love Google! Google is my friend and whoever invented it is a f-n genius! I will google guys I may go out with to see if their story matches up with what they've told me. This has come from having been stalked, approached my current girlfriends who are upset with their cheating boyfriends (I had no clue these guys have girlfriends seeing as they're using a dating site) and being completly lied to. I really do have enough material to write my own novel on the horrors of dating. Since S sent me the link to his blog, I briefly scanned it and saw that his username is different than his real name. So I googled that and found a huge array of applicable sites. Near the top of the list was Myspace. I hate Myspace but if it gives me more info, I shall follow and lo' and behold, S is listed as "married" and "proud parent". Ummm, what?! So I figure out who the wife is since she is in the number one spot and there are a bunch of pictures of both S and the wife at their wedding and their honeymoon and at Halloween and at Christmas and with her kid. Ummm, what the heck is a married guy doing trolling for girls on a dating site/section set aside for potential relationships?! It makes me so mad! All that wasted time emailing him when he's not actually available! What are men even thinking?!

I sadly had already sent S an email before I made this discovery so now I am waiting on pins and needles for him to email me back so I can TELL HIM OFF. Oh yea, I will. He is married, with a step-daughter and a wife who seemingly wants loads of his kids. If he doesn't want that, he needs to tell her instead of fooling around with unsuspecting women who don't bother googling his ass. I will completely relish in giving him a piece of my mind should he dare to write me back.

Now, I am left with just one other guy to chat with via email and we are both taking it slow. If he runs the course of S, I will act like an ostrich and bury my head in the f-n sand. The sand has got to be better than dating purgatory.

Saturday, July 05, 2008

Cute Threadholders

During an episode of blog trolling a little while back, I saw that all these stitchy bloggers were buying cool threadholders from Monique so I, of course, had to jump on that bandwagon. When I first looked, she didn't have any available that caught my eye but I knew she would be making more soon since her Etsy shop almost was out! I looked back a few days later and these jumped out as being completely me. Always the dreamer...chasing my dreams and seeing if they will come true...ever hopeful. I bought one clear "dream" one and an opaque "daydream" one with blue, green and white bubbles. I love them! And as a thank you, Monique included a skein of Vikki Clayton silk. I didn't know there would be thread in the package though and my letter opener sliced through parts of the skein. Oops!! But it's still useable and I can't wait to find a little project to try out this yummy silk. Thanks Monique...these threadholders are so cute!

Christmas in July Exchange

I saw that Nic posted on the Christmas in July board that she received the exchange that I sent to her. I am very glad that it arrived safely and that she liked it! I saw that she is a big Lizzie*Kate fan so I decided to stitch her the Joy ornament that appeared in the Just Cross Stitch Magazine Ornaments Edition in 2007. I think it is very cute and was eager to stitch it. Below is the exchange in it's entirity. I also included the Heart in Hand "Herbert" chart, DMC needles, a handful of DMC floss in christmasy colors, a piece of christmas backing fabric and some See's lollipops and funny christmas card which are not in the picture. This was my first ornament finish and I like how it came out.
Lizzie*Kate Joy Ornament
2007 Just Cross Stitch Magazine Ornaments Edition
28 count Tasted Almond w/charted WDW

Quaker Mouse Has Landed in the UK!

I received a lovely email from Carol R. in the UK saying that the Quaker Mouse I stitched up for her for the Quaker Inspired exchange made it to the UK safely. Whew!! I was so scared that this would be the package that would mysteriously disappear within the crazy postal system. I was so relieved it made it there in one piece and that Carol liked it. Yay!! That made me so happy.
Carol and I have become good friends within the past few months and she had talked me into joining this exchange. It didn't take much convincing though! We had both talked about the different Quaker Animals and how we thought the Mouse was so cute. Next thing I know, the moderator emailed me saying Carol R. was my partner! It was very hard keeping it a secret since I usually talk about all my exchanges with Carol! I was very excited but nervous to have Carol as my partner since I am very new to finishing and she is a super expert. I decided to stitch up the Quaker Mouse and make it into a flatfold. This was the first quaker pattern I've stitched and I really enjoyed the design. I didn't really envision how it would turn out until I made a trip to Britex, the super duper huge fabric and notions shop in the city. There I found some super Batik fabric and after staring at the wall of trim for about an hour and trying different combinations, my eyes landed on the funky ribbon trim and the snapshot entered my imagination. That was it! Here is what the flatfold looks like.
The Workbasket Quaker Mouse
32 count Vintage Light Examplar
Caron Waterlilies Silk in Flagstone
Finished as Flatfold with batik fabby and ribbon trim
I included some extras to make this exchange extra special for Carol. I sent her the Samplers and Such "A Spot of Tea I" chart with some coordinating Gloriana silk, some fancy french Bohin needles, a magnetic notepad, some cosmos flowers seeds and yummy chocolate bars. I had so much fun stitching and finishing Quaker Mouse. So glad you enjoyed your exchange Carol!

Quaker Cat Has Arrived!

Last Wednesday, I came home today to find a huge box in my apartment! I was a little surprised as the box was huge and I was expecting a stitchy order in the mail but nowhere near enough to fill up such a big box.
But then my poor ailed eyes saw that it said Quaker Exchange on the box! I received my Quaker Inspired exchange from Margie. Oh my! She spoiled me. She stitched me up Quaker Cat on a very pale green linen and finished it up in a lovely green box. It is lovely. This is the first box I've ever received so I will be sure to study it. She did such a great job and the green cording and tassel are perfect!
Plus she filled the box with goodies. She sent me a couple of pieces of backing fabric, charms, 2 skeins of Vikki Clayton silk that I've been curious about, M Designs Rose Mosaic Needle Roll chart, a box set of a tape measure, pin cushion/threader and needlecase that looks very interesting and Altoids. I feel very spoiled. Wow...what a wonderful day to end a long day filled with work, an exercise class and a climb up 50 stairs! Thank you so much Margie!

Wednesday, July 02, 2008

Happy Anniversary Mom & Dad!

Fifty-three years ago today, my mom and dad got married at La Iglesia Merced in Granada, Nicaragua. The church is pictured below. Today, they are in Granada so I can't celebrate with them and most likely they are quibbling with each other and have forgotten that they have been together for so long. They never were much for anniversaries but 53 years together is a very long time and I didn't want the day to go by undocumented.
La Iglesia Merced is a beautiful structure that has stood in the same spot for many years through political upheaval and revolution. I suppose the black patina is a testimant to all it has witnessed.

Three years ago, in 2005, we (the kids) decided to throw mom and dad a big party to celebrate fifty years of marriage. This involved a big family reunion as there are many relatives and most are in Nicaragua. So we saw a lot of relatives we hadn't seen in years, had mom and dad do a renewal of vows at La Iglesia Merced at the same tiny alter they said their vows at 50 years prior and threw them a big party at what is considered the "country club" over there. The renewal of vows was very special and at that moment, as I watched my parents, I realized that despite all the quibbling that I listened to all those years, they really loved and depended on each other. I guess quibbling is just a normal part of least for them.

Happy Anniversary Mom and Dad!

Tuesday, July 01, 2008

My Neighborhood Was Taken Over!

On Sunday, my neighborhood was taken over by crazy cyclists!! This happens every year. There is this event called "Centurion" or something like that every June and they map out this bicycle course through the downtown area of the city that I live in. It is madness since downtown in pretty busy on the weekends as it is and then they block off areas so the congestion moves to other areas of the my block! I was basically homebound for a good part of the afternoon since I did not want to lose my parking spot and also didn't want to drag all my laundry and packages to my car which was parked pretty far as it is due to all the crazy congestion. After my workout and a pit stop at the nearby farmers' market to pick up fresh goodies, I went back home to grab my camera so I could take a couple of snaps to share. Here they are coming around a bend. Can you see? There are a lot of them!!
And here they go around the other bend. They move fast!
I'm a little bummed that I did not have my camera for the kiddie section of the race. It was cute seeing all these little kids on their tiny racing bikes. Usually Centurion is children in the morning and then adults in the late(r) morning. Even though it was fun to see...I was happy when my neighborhood returned back to normal!

New Toy for Me!

I finally hopped on the bandwagon and got this new toy. Do you see it? It's an 8G iPod Nano! I've always been the last one to jump on any gadget bandwagon. Digital cameras, mp3 players, Tivo, etc. Recently, the IT Department at my job is cracking down on broadband streaming so I wasn't going to be able to listen to internet radio at work. Oh my gosh! It may as well be the end of the world! I need music in order to get through my workday. Music is like a white noise to me at drowns out any pesky little sounds coming from other areas of the office and I play what I like which is typically big band, jazz, 60s brit-pop, 80's and anything else that is NOT Top 40, rap, new country, R&B and most electronica. Yes, I am 32 and listen to music most people identify with older folks. I need that music to survive my 9 hour workday in front of a computer! When the music restriction came down, I knew I needed an iPod since I could them plug it in through the computer speakers and listen to my music all day and you know what?! It's the best thing I've done in a long time! I absolutely love this little music gadget. I still need to learn how to use it properly but it responds to my non-techy commands.
Here is the nano (not sure what that reflection is) posed with my red Fantasia Centaurette. She is so vain! She is always looking at herself in that mirror!