Thursday, February 26, 2009

So...What Would You Do?

What a long day...what a busy week! I managed to get home after work and the chiropractor...and get some (not all) of the boring domesticity out of the way. I do hate chores...they keep me away from stitching.

I started in on the Snappers tonight...not really all that fond of the September square but eager to finish since that would mean I am 75% done. I decided to take a look at my border against the chart to just make sure I was on track and you know what. I wasn't!! Talk about having a heart attack! I've been doing the border as I go to avoid doing the entire border at the very end and by that point...want to never ever see GAST Dried Thyme ever again. I'm getting quite tired of looking at that color as it is. I came to the conclusion that I am off by one thread on the bottom leafy border and that I made the mistake from the very beginning...on the very first leaf. I am shocked and very disappointed in myself. Of course, anyone else looking at this isn't going to say "Gee Valerie, you're such a're off by one thread. What an awful stitcher you are!" They wont know...only I would know...and of course, you all know only because I told you.

I know that if I leave the mistake in, it won't detract or affect the pattern in any way. But if I leave it in, I think a part of me will go berserk. Can I really leave it be and then go spend a ton of money on framing knowing that it's not as perfect as it should be? I can be such a perfectionist sometimes!!

So what would you do? Honestly...I need to know. Leave it be or rip it out and start over?

I would insert a snap here but I'm quite bummed out and disgusted with myself that I can't even deal with the camera right now other than to charge it to make sure it's ready for my weekend class. I think it may be time to start something else for the time being. Damn frogs had to go and ruin my Snappers mojo.


Until next time...

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Tuesdays Are My Stitchy Night

Tuesdays are my stitchy night but I don't think I will get much stitching done tonight. On Friday, I had a talk with the powers that be to let me know that as with many other entities in my neighborhood and state, we'll be enduring some budget cuts. Luckily, my department is only succumbing to a 2% budget cut. Not bad compared to other departments' 10+%. There is the chance that we will be subjected to furloughs in the latter part of the year though so I will be going to the City Council Planning Meeting tonight to hear the bad news' from the horse's mouth. Is that how the saying goes? Well, you get what I mean.

The last week has not produced very much stitching time and I cannot seem to put down these Snappers! My gawd, there is so much calling my name and yet I continue. Below is my progress on the September block. Kind of boring so far.
Tomorrow is yoga night but Thursday will be a tv and stitching night for me so hopefully I can show more progress on this or a new start towards the end of the week.

Until next time...

And the Award Goes To....

:::drumroll please::: Me! Yay!! maybe I am internalizing the Oscars a little and I didn't even have a chance to watch them but I can only imagine the excitement in getting a gorgeous gold statuette.

I did receive a couple of wonderful awards in the past week or two and have been quite lax in acknowledging them on the blog. First up is the Special Friends Award and "Love" Pendant Award from Carol R. The description for this award reads "These blogs are exceedingly charming. These kind bloggers aim to be friends. They are not interested in self-aggrandizement. Our hope is that when the ribbons of these prizes are cut, even more friendships are propagated. Please give more attention to these kind of writers. When you pass this award along please include these guidelines. I am to choose eight friends to share this with".

Carol and I have become great friends though our love of stitching and blogging. Thank you Carol!

I am always torn to nominate people because my friends have already received this award or are too modest to accept one. However, I will name my eight nominees who are people whose blogs and stitching inspire me and have thus become friends. They are:

1. Edgar
2. Natasha
3. Lisa
4. Theresa
5. Diane
6. Carol S.
7. Mary

and last but not least, I send the award back to Carol R. I am very grateful that stitching and blogging have made us great friends despite the logistical distance between us.

8. Carol R.

As if that award wasn't enough, Theresa sent me this "Your Blog is Fabulous Award"! Awww! Thanks Theresa...I think your blog is fabulous too and as a California transplant, I love reading about your new discoveries near your new hometown.

With this new award, I am to list five addictions and five bloggers. I have already listed my five addictions here and since I've seen many of the bloggers in my circle posting this award, I will not pass it on. Besides...I think everyone's blog is fabulous and I just would not be able to choose. I can't choose...everyone knows what an indecisive Libra I am anyways! Everybody is fabulous!

And with this...the awards show must come to a close.

Until next time...

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Tuesdays are my Stitchy Night

Wow, Tuesday again already! Last week ended up being fairly busy but I made good progress on my August Bent Creek Snapper block anyways. Here is the progress as of Monday evening. The white seagulls and lighthouse are a bit hard to see with the flashback of the camera.
I decided to go ahead and keep stitching on it tonight to finish the border for August and move onto September. I have no idea why I suddenly seem addicted to this project. I have two other projects kitted up that I should work on too! The evening deemed to be quite distracting. Between tv shows, the computer, mail, tidying up and talking to *the boy*, I only managed to put a few stitches into this at a time. I managed to finish off the border for August but didn't have a chance to start September yet. Good thing Thursday will be a stitchy night for me as well. I'm not sure if I will pick up where I left off on this or start something new. We'll see. But for now, here is how the Bent Creek Snappers stand.
Until next time...

Monday, February 16, 2009

My Sweet Valentine

A word of warning...if you cannot bear to read sappy and cute and lovey dovey, you can skip this posting all together. I wouldn't want people to hurl their breakfast.

I wouldn't normally be all gushy about Valentines but seeing this is the first year in many years that I actually have one...I figure I can be sappy and annoying. I'm allowed! And I was incredibly surprised at the outcome of Valentine's Day seeing as my expectations were tossed into one of the many mudpuddles scattered around the Bay Area. *The boy* had many tricks up his sleeve.

I've already shared the roses with you and they are holding up very well. I have them displayed in perfect viewing distance near my tv. I also received a very cute card in the mail Thursday night which *the boy* woefully explained I was supposed to have received on Friday. You see, flowers on Thursday, card on Friday and him on Saturday when I drove out to the East Bay to see him. Cute, huh?

On Saturday, I treated myself to a 90 minute massage which was sinful. I wish I could afford to have a massage once a week instead of once a quarter! I slowly made my way to the East Bay to meet *the boy* and we hung out until it was time for dinner. We ate at this neighborhood italian trattoria called Acquacotta in Alameda. I was worried that we would end up waiting forever seeing as they didn't take reservations but they sat us right away and were very accomodating. For starters we had an olive medley appetizer and arancini. I love arancinis and these were quite good but I know this spot in North Beach where they are "o.m.g. so good!" that these couldn't even compare. For entrees, *the boy* had this pasta with a duck confit/ragu that was so good...the duck was so soft and flavorful and the meat just fell apart. I had pasta with meatballs in a light marinara that was very tasty and since it was a "holiday" we ordered two desserts...the pannacotta with strawberries and flourless chocolate cake. Both scrumptious. I am not the biggest chocolate fan but *the boy* is diehard about his chocolate and he was in heaven. I loved the pannacotta...and that was a great recommendation from the waiter. The restaurant was a hit. After we rolled ourselves back home, we just relaxed and watched tv. *The boy* liked his gift from me...Issey Miyake cologne, a small box of chocolates and a cute stuffed animal. In fact, he seemed quite surprised I got him a gift at all. Don't girls give their guys Valentine's Day gifts? I love giving gifts! And to make the day more special, we received a message late in the evening that *the boy's* dear friends, Ron and Pamela got engaged! Congratulations to them!

On Sunday, we woke up very late (1215pm!) and struggled to get moving. We hit Ole's in Alameda again for a very late but yummy breakfast and I dropped him off at the market so he could do grocery shopping. I tell you, he *loves* grocery shopping!! I was more than happy to leave him there and make a quick run to NiaH for fabric consultation and needles. When I walked into NiaH, the lovely Mary told me they had something for me in the store. "They do?!" Hmmm....I don't remember ordering anything?? I open up this envelope she hands me and it was a surprise gift certificate from *the boy* for NiaH. Woo!!! I was floored! That was so thoughtful and of course would come in handy as I am a weekend regular at NiaH (Hi Mary & Leila!). I didn't have much time to shop and only had a couple of things I wanted to buy so I decided to hold onto my certificate to help me pay for the upcoming CA Wells class at the shop. When I went back to the market to pick up *the boy*, I told him he was very sneaky with all his tricks. He was happy it turned out to be a surprise and that I was happy.

Today, *the boy* had to work and I had countless errands to run and parents to visit. It's exhausting driving all over the Bay Area in the rain! tired. I dropped off *the boy* at work in the am and drove everywhere and then picked him up in the evening and met his new bosses. They seem very nice. We then made the trek back to the East Bay and stopped at a gem of a sushi place in Alameda for dinner. Kamakura is a cute spot that seems quite popular with the locals. They had hamachi kama so I was in heaven...that, some tuna sashimi, rice and tea and this girl was a happy camper! The owner, this older japanese lady, was adorable to see playing hostess with the mostest. She was dressed very nicely and checked up on her customers to see how they were faring. One customer had a birthday and it is an all restaurant celebration. The lights go out, the whole room sings happy birthday with the owner taking the lead as they bring out the birthday treat all lit up on a tray. And the best thing of all, they give you a little glass of plum wine with your check as a treat. Any restaurant that is willing to booze me up on my way out the door is a-ok in my book. I will definitely be dragging *the boy* back to that little gem of a sushi place.

I had a lovely Valentine's and as much as *the boy* drives me crazy sometimes, I am very happy he's my valentine.

I hope everyone had a lovely "holiday" and weekend too.

Until next time...

**I'll be back tomorrow with stitchy progress! :)

Thursday, February 12, 2009

It's Like Christmas!

Yay! It's like Christmas today! I had a very important "learn how to use your new work phone" training today and when I returned to the office, one of the girls said I had a surprise at my desk. Now...I know most people like surprises. Me...not so into surprises so I walked to my cubicle with trepidation and low and behold, a beautiful and huge flower arrangement in honor of St. Valentine's Day. I honestly wasn't expecting anything from *the boy* but I guess he had a trick up his sleeve. There are one dozen roses: 4 bright pink, 4 red and 4 white with lots of greens and pussywillows. The photo does not do them justice. I kind of feel bad for yelling at the boy last night now...I suppose I should apologize?!
So in my excitement, I had to take a picture but I left my camera at home so I asked one of my coworkers and she produced this monstrosity that takes pictures onto a floppy disk! I've never seen one of these things before! I then had to find a computer that still had the floppy disk slot to "download" the picture. Whoa, talk about a Flinstones type camera!

Then, when I came back from lunch, I had an email saying that since we got new fancy work phones, everyone with a headset would be getting a new headset that is compatible with the new phones. So yay, I get a new headset too!!

It's like Christmas...roses...headsets...I really don't mind that the day started with spilt coffee in the car. It's a good day!

Dinner plans for tomorrow got confirmed so I hope that everyone has a wonderful Valentine's Day!

Until next time...

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Tuesdays are My Stitchy Night

As the title says, Tuesdays are my stitchy nights. I've just decided this. Mondays and Wednesdays are my yoga nights. Thursdays are my tv nights but sometimes it might be my "go out" night along with Friday. Those two nights are always up in the air. Like this week...I'm treating myself to a manicure/pedicure/chair massage on Thursday night and then will have to pack for my weekend in the East Bay. Friday this week, I am supposed to have dinner with my friend, Claire but that's still up in the air and I haven't a real clue if we're on or not since she has relatives visiting in the area. Thursday and Friday night are *always* up in the air, but sometimes they are stitchy nights. The weekend nights are now spent in the East Bay or driving about. Sometimes I can get stitchy with it but sometimes not. So my stitchy schedule is all over the place.*sigh* But Tuesdays?? Tuesdays will be my stitchy night no matter what because it's the night between yoga class nights and all I want to do is relax and I relax best stitching.

Last night was no exception. There were some obstacles like my landlord helping me move out a big tv *the boy* brought over to my apartment before broken leg. I realize that he had the best intentions but said tv did not have a good picture plus it had some psychedelic corner where everything looked either neon green or bright magenta. He did not realize this *before* bringing it up 50 stairs. Then he got his leg broken and I've been dealing with this monstrosity which brought me so much aggravation since my old tv worked perfectly fine and was operational with my remote. Gah! So the landlord took away the bad tv which will benefit another tenant who doesn't care about the psychedelic corner and I got my old tv back in place. But after having a big tv on my tv stand for the last three weeks, my 19" tv sure looks tiny!

I settled in to stitch and about an hour in, I decided to call this new credit card company to take care of a little business. What should have been a 5 minute call took 30+ minutes and I was ready to strangle the customer rep! Some people really shouldn't be in customer service!! But at least I had my stitching to calm me down.

I also had a rather long talk with *the boy* and tried to beat down an impending migraine all at the same time. The migraine won at 530am this morning but that's besides the point.

With the interruptions, I don't feel like I got a lot accomplished. Here was my evening progress on the August block of my Bent Creek Snappers. Border, some sea, some sand and a little bit of the lighthouse (in white, so hard to see). I was hoping to get more done.
Perhaps, if dinner plans on Friday fall through...Friday will become a stitchy night too and I can show more progress...

Until next time...

Monday, February 09, 2009

QFRR Weekend

I did it! My goal this weekend was to finish my section on Rowyn's QFRR so I could post it first thing this morning. Woo! So happy. I finished about 9pm last night and took pictures. Excuse the poor quality...bad lighting and all. Following is the section I stitched...three motifs on the left as well as my initials.
And here is how Rowyn's piece looks so far. I absolutely love the effect of the Needle Necessities overdyed floss she chose...goes from a lovely sea green to a dark blue. Love it!I was happy to get this off in the mail to the next person...especially seeing as I was one week behind due to all the drama revolving around *the boy*. But I am back on track and I have no stitching obligations for the next month or so. Yay!!

I debated long and hard late last night as to what my next project will be. There are so many calling to me...ornaments, Bent Creek Snappers, Peppermint Twist, Fairy Moon, Letter G-Gwendolyn, knitting *the boy* a many to choose from and only so little time not to mention only two hands!! I pulled all the materials to start Peppermint Twist but I felt unsure about the Woodsmoke linen with the threads despite that being the recommended color. It seems a little dark but I think it's because I'm not used to stitching on something so dark. I'm leaving it out on the coffee table to see if the combo grows on me. If it does, I'll head to NiaH for serging this coming weekend and if it doesn't grow on me, I'll head to NiaH anyways to buy an alternate fabric. So the projects at hand this week will be the Country Cottage Needleworks Peace ornament as my travel around project and I will work on the August block of my Bent Creek Snappers when I am actually home.

The weekend was filled with lots of errands and driving around. It is the new routine that I'm not so fond of but I try to remember that it's all just temporary. *The boy* is doing well and healing fast. I took him around to do some errands including grocery shopping. He drove one of those handicapped carts in the grocery store and I cringed in fear that he'd knock over an expensive display. Luckily none of that happened and he went grocery shopping for his own stuff. He loves grocery shopping whereas I hate it. The only demand I had for our time together was for him to treat me to breakfast so we tried Ole's in Alameda which had yummy waffles and to top it off...he made me dinner! Well I helped seeing as he needs crutches...and it was an easy dinner but he takes all the credit for the steaks.

The week is shaping up to be a busy one and I hope to get some stitching done to show mid-week. In the meantime, I hope that everyone has a wonderful start to their week.

Until next time...

Wednesday, February 04, 2009

Comforting Tra-la-la

I've been in hermit mode the last week or so. I figure it's normal considering the circumstances of the last two weeks. Hard to imagine that two weeks ago today, I was sitting in the hospital fielding calls from *the boy's* family and friends and waiting to see when his surgery was going to be performed. Now, two weeks later, *the boy's* facial coloring is back to normal and he's becoming a pro on getting around with crutches. His leg is still a lovely collage of purples but that is slowly and surely fading. He's managing his pain pretty well and has even started his new job. It sure has been a very interesting two weeks! Once I managed to get *the boy* settled in the East Bay, I really needed to take some time for myself...hence canceling my sewing class. And I took things out of rotation. I needed something that brought me comfort and made me happy. Since I started my Bent Creek Snappers, I had been looking forward to when I could stitch the July Block. I thought that the birds looked cute and it was a happy block. I finished the June block in early November and just haven't had a chance to get to the Snappers since. Last Thursday, I pulled it out and started on it...even though I should have been working on Rowyn's QFRR. Last night I finished the July block. I kind of wish that my skein of WDW Deep Sea wasn't so can't even see the frenchknotted eyes, but I do think the color goes with the rest of the muted earthy colors in this piece. July sings Tra-la-la!
Speaking of Rowyn's QFRR, here is all I've managed to get accomplish to date. Sad...very sad! I've stitched my initials and started the motif below the bunny. Two more motifs after that one and I can send it on. I'm late again! But this will be my focus for the rest of the week and I hope to get it in the mail on Monday at the very latest.
Last week, I put up a post asking people to join my PIF if they were so inclined and the deadline to sign up was last night. I only had one taker! I'm not surprised...I requested my PIF a tad late in the midst of a "selfish-stitching" year for most. I completely understand since I've cut down on exchanges for the most part and am aiming to finish a couple of decorative projects for the apartment plus ornaments. The taker of my PIF is Natasha! Yay! I will also gift two PIFs to bring it up to three. Natasha, please send me an email with your contact info. Thanks!

Well, that's all for me for now. Next time you hear from me...I hope to have finished the QFRR and move onto another project. Which one...nobody knows...not even me! :)