Friday, September 29, 2006

Work stress for DH

Matt was in a foul mood last night, and he explained that his boss was giving him a hard time for missing four weeks of work. He said no one had ever missed more than three days of work at a time, which is why they didn't know the leave procedure. I find that really hard to believe. And the boss said that when his wife is sick, he doesn't stay home with her. Did your wife ever think she had hepatitis A? The doctor specifically said that if I started running a fever, I had to go to the hospital. I am much more important to my husband than his job. And apparently when other people are sick, they still go to work. Great, they're spreading their germs to everyone else at work. It just gets me so mad that this boss thinks work is more important than someone's health. Matt wasn't faking. He went to the doctor at least three times. He had an ear infection, was dizzy, and was taking medication that knocks you out--how can he drive a car, much less get any work done? Grrrr.

So now I'm stressed out too.

Stitching: I'm working on The Awakening. I was going to work on my Lizzie Kate acorn scissor case, but it lists Weeks Dye Works threads, which I really like. Of course I don't have all the colors it takes. I hope to go to Ginger's Saturday, so maybe I can get them then. I've been finishing smalls so furiously that it's hard to switch to a bigger project until I get them all done. I still have these left to do:

Army Hummer (Love Quilts)
TW Futurecast
Porcelain Nosegay (waiting for fabric)
Siamese Cat
Gray Cat
7 ornaments to finish
Lizzie Kate acorn scissor case

Blog stuff: I got all my blog entries moved over. Whew!

Kitties: The kitties went to the vet yesterday. Hathor's still sluggish from her rabies shot. I hate seeing her like that, even though I know it's nothing serious. And Anubis hasn't lost any weight. We're going to have to cut back on his food even more. He's going to love that.

Thursday, September 28, 2006

Just Nan RR block HD


I finally managed to grid the thing after many frogging sessions. I also stitched a block--Four Calling Birds--and wrote up my directions. I'll mail it out to Cathy (Froggingpro) tomorrow. So exciting! By the way, I'm doing Just Nan's 12 Days of Christmas Whimzi.

So that makes 10 finishes for the Challenge! I made my goal, mostly done with smalls and finishes. Here's my list:

French Cow -- Zebra
French Cow -- Mer-Cow
Witch Way
Flower Girls
Honeysuckle Rose
Just Nan Round Robin, Day 4 of 12 Days of Christmas

Ornament Finishes: Santa's Trimmings
Peace Tree
Christmas Jewels
Honeysuckle Rose (biscornu)

They can be seen at

Since I still need to reduce my stash and I don't have a burning desire to buy charts right now, I'll keep going. I have 7 ornaments still to finish (I ran out of mat board) and about 5 smalls I could knock out (and not all are Just Nans either!).

Blog details: I've decided to move my blog to So now I need to copy all my posts over. That may take a while.

My first biscornu!


Annette posted instructions on how to make a biscornu, so I figured I'd give it a try. What else am I going to do with these smalls? I have enough big pieces I still haven't framed. I'm also going to get the Jeannette Douglas My Stitching Treasures box for Christmas (I hope), so I'll have a place to put these.

This was quick and easy. I think a square piece would have looked better, but this looks acceptable. I placed my initials and date on the bottom (MB06), one letter or number on each corner.

I have Jump for Joy that I could also make into a biscornu, but I need to decide how much I like the biscornu format first.

Otherwise, I've been stitching on The Awakening. I hope to finish the page this weekend, but we've been playing computer games more than usual lately.

Time waster: Suzemo posted this very cool M&Ms game just in time for Halloween: I got 28, but it took me a while. (I hate horror movies because I can't stand the gore. Science fiction movies I love.)

Honeysuckle Rose HD


I swear, I've had more frogging with this little piece. The back isn't as neat as I'd like, but I think it turned out nice. The bead is really cute. I've been finishing up these smalls because of the 10 Project Challenge, and just to get them out of the way. It would be nice to have just 5 projects on the go at any one time, and I feel better about the bigger charts just sitting there, if that makes any sense. Charts for small pieces just seem to be taunting me to finish them.

I also worked on the gridding for my Just Nan round robin. Frogging yet again. I spent more than an hour trying to get the first squares right, and I still didn't manage it.

I received my Lizzie Kate acorn scissor case. It's adorable, but I don't know what I'll put in it. It's too cute to just throw in a drawer.

So what's HAED has been sorely neglected. I think it's time to get another page done.

Gaming: Matt sent me a link to Stargate Worlds, an MMO in development. This one looks good, and Matt said he'd consider playing it. They'd better hurry and get it out before the show goes off the air eventually!

Flower Girls HD


Yesterday while the guys were playing computer games, I worked on Just Nan's Flower Girls and got it finished. It was a very quick finish. This makes two of the WhimZis I've done so far.

Cherylann's challenge to finish 10 or 25 or 50 projects is giving me an excuse to pull out the small pieces. I think I'm going to start Dragon Guard II and work on it today and then go back to The Awakening. Edit: I decided to ditch Dragon Guard II. I was doing it for a friend, and I just don't like the way it looks over one. Over two would take me forever.

Kitties: They were so cute yesterday evening. Anubis was curled up on the couch, and Hathor got very close to him and lay down. Anubis started bathing her face. Of course, then he started licking inside her ear like he did to his brother, so I had to discourage him from that. Later she again lay down touching him, and they both went to sleep. Anubis wouldn't even put up with that from his brother when Horus was alive. I'm so glad they're getting along. Anubis plays with her and is careful not to hurt her. This from the little snot who used to beat up his brother. Hathor has also taken to sleeping right against my face at night. I don't get as much sleep, but I love having a kitty to cuddle. We took a nap yesterday, and at some point I woke up to a kitten foot up against my lips. Fortunately I wasn't sleeping with my mouth open. Matt said Hathor was telling me to stop snoring. hehe

Christmas Jewels ornament


I finished this one today. It was easy, just sewed it up on the machine. I made the cording, which is a little tricky, but still not too bad.

I hope to finish Witch Way tonight. We have our favorite shows to watch (Stargate and Atlantis), so I should have the time.

Witch Way HD


I finished Just Nan's Witch Way last night, gave it a bath, and stitched the charm on this morning. I just love this piece, though the witch's hair and broom were a tiny bit of a pain. I think this one needs to get framed and stay up year round.

I discovered last night that I have the wrong fabric for Porcelain Nosegay. I checked the Just Nan website, and apparently the chart lists the wrong thing. Argh! So I need to call Ginger's and order the right fabric. There's probably not much difference between lavendar and lilac, but I don't want to take a chance.

My TrickORTreat kit came yesterday! I'm so excited! But when I looked at all the materials and instructions, it's a little daunting. I'm sure I can do it, but it will be fairly involved. I'm going to keep it for a little later.

So today I think I'll work on Flower Girls by Just Nan. I should be able to finish it this weekend, though we have a lot of work to do around the house.

Peace Tree ornament


I finished this one up today. I swear, I just hate finishing these things, but I'm not willing to pay someone else to do it. And this one didn't turn out as well as I had hoped. I should have used two piece of mat board instead of one piece of foam core. Some areas are lumpy, and my thread shows in a few areas. Argh. I'm just not brave enough to use glue either; I have to stitch it. It's really annoying to stitch a pretty ornament and then have the finishing be a disappointment. Not too many people would notice the problems, but I do.

Seven more of these ornaments left to finish. That's it, I'm not stitching anymore.

Halloween poem


I had an idea...dangerous, I know. I'm thinking about designing a Halloween sampler. So...I looked for a good Halloween poem and couldn't find anything even close. Therefore, I had to write one. I don't know how good it is, probably not very, but here it is. If anyone can help improve it, let me know!

Poor Jack

A man named Jack, sore tempted was he.
He tricked the Devil straight up a tree.
Took a knife to the tree and carved out a cross,
And made the Devil promise never to toss
Him into the pit. But soon we all die,
And oh! his soul from body did fly.
But Heaven said no, not pious was he,
Nor did hell want him, too clever he be!
One ember the Devil gave him to light his way.
Poor Jack o' the lantern wanders ever today.

Copyright by me, that is to say, it is mine and belongs to me. (Yes, I've been watching Monty Python.)

I met Cherylann!


I met Cherylann (HasturTorres) yesterday for lunch. I'm sure they wanted us out after 2.5 hours! We had a little show and tell with some pieces we brought and talked about stitching and life in general. She's a gamer, which I find very cool. She's my kind of people! I wish she lived closer, but we did talk about maybe having a get-together at some point. Here's her webshots page.

Diet: I start the diet yet again today. I'm going to have headaches from my body adjusting, but it needs to be done. My goal is to exercise at least three times this week. I may walk the dog this afternoon (and hope my foot doesn't give me too many problems). I've tried so many times. I just don't know if anything's going to work.

Disappointing Monday


Typical Monday. Matt found out that the doctor won't fill out his paperwork for compensation unless he sees him at an appointment. What a scam! We have to pay for an appointment after already seeing the doctor twice. Then I discovered that Hathor knocked my large Ecosphere Matt gave me for Christmas off the buffet table. He paid at least $200 for it. I'm very disappointed. Matt's pretty pissed. He said he was "having second thoughts about her," though I'd never give her up. I have a dentist's appointment this afternoon (yuck!). All I need now is a call that I didn't get the job I interviewed for.

I started working on Witch Way, and it's very cute. I'm afraid to work on it today!

The Awakening Page 20


I finished another page, and this one has a face (well, page 20 and 21). Very dark, but it still looks OK. I'm closing in on the halfway point on this piece. And not bored yet!

I don't know what I work on next for a bit. I might start Witch Way. I'm in the Halloween mood. And so looking forward to getting in my TrickORTreat box. I'll start that one as soon as I get it.

Matt: He's feeling better, finally!

French cow part deux


I couldn't resist stitching another French cow. I swear, I'd design tons if I let myself. I love this idea. The mer-cow, or la vache de la mer, is my own design, based on the template.

I plan to continue working on The Awakening this weekend.

I received my chart of HAED's The Metamorphosis. I've loved this one since I first saw it so long ago.

I also broke down and ordered Just Nan's TrickORTreat. I've been spending way too much money lately. I guess that makes up for all the times I went into Gingers and bought nothing.
Fraud: We discovered today that someone had stolen Matt's credit card number and subscribed to some dirty website. We've been billed $40 each month since February. Since this is the card he keeps in his desk drawer, they could have only gotten it from one of the online stores he shops at. Our home network is secure, so the person must have gotten it from the store. We've canceled the credit card, and we'll get a refund withing 48 hours. Matt got the person's IP address, so we're going to see if there's some way to prosecute the dirty scumbag who did this. I swear, I hate people sometimes. I could have gotten very angry about this, but I'm keeping myself calm.

New job: I was supposed to hear back this week, but I haven't yet. That doesn't bode well. Oh well, I didn't want it anyway. It probably wouldn't pay much at all. Still, depressing.

Diet: I asked the doctor for an appetite suppressant, and she gave me Meridia. Great...but I can't take any diet pills while I'm trying to get pregnant. Drat! So I have to keep trying (and failing) to do it on my own.

French cow


Autumn is doing a quilt and asked her friends to send in blocks. I've done the zebra cow and plan to do a mer-cow soon (I couldn't help it). So cute!

I did a little cross-country stitching on The Awakening so I could stitch the woman's face. I'm disappointed because it's VERY dark. I knew the piece in general was darker than the painting, but I didn't think about what that would mean about her face. It looks good and will probably look better once the background is stitched in, but it just irks me that it's not true to the painting. Of course, you have no way of knowing that until you actually stitch it. That's taking a lot on faith (and I've been burned before). No help for it now but to keep going!

Matt: Matt is still sick. We found out work will cover some of the time we thought would be no pay, and that's good news.

Diet: Bleh, not so good. We've been eating candy.

The Awakening Page 19


Yet another page done. I pushed through and stayed up a little late so I could finish it. I didn't notice the cattails until I scanned the page. The next page starts the woman--part of her hair and shoulder. I had planned to switch to an old WIP (trying a rotation), but I think I may have to continue on with this piece.

I forgot to mentioned that when I took the piece in to Ginger's, the ladies working their made a big deal about it (they get so excited about stitching, which is nice). I hope to bring it to Camp Stitchalot in the spring. I know it won't be finished by then.

I volunteered to do a French Cow for Autumn. I didn't have enough to do! I'm going to do the zebra cow.

Someone at work also requested something for the silent auction for charity. I'm still thinking about it, maybe a Christmas piece.

My WIPs list


I have so many things going right now that I figure it's good to list them. I keep an Excel spreadsheet, but this way I can do links and such so they look nice. I'm going to try a rotation on my WIPs and hold off on the new starts (at least as long as I can!).

HAED The Awakening (my focus)
Magnificent Wizard (bleh)
TW Angel Procession (bleh, it's been around for ages)
Maggie the Messmaker (bleh)
Army Hummer (Love Quilts charity piece)
HAED RR (all done!)
Just Nan RR (doing the 12 Days of Christmas, waiting for fabric)

These are ones I want to start soon:
Siamese Cat and Gray Cat (silk gauze)
Just Nans: Witch Way, Honeysuckle Rose, Flower Girls, Porcelain Nosegay
Dragon Guard (for a friend)
TW Futurecast (to match one I did, beads on order)

Kitten: Hathor's belly is looking better.

Matt: He went back to work today, poor baby.

New job: I should hear whether I got it or not this week. I'm sorta hoping I don't get it. They probably won't offer me enough money anyway.

Diet: I was bad this weekend and had pizza and Taco Bell. I did lose 7 pounds, but that could be water from being off my period. I'm doing Slim Fast shakes again, so we'll see.

Wedding anniversary!


Matt and I have been married for three years now! We met September 1 and got married the following September 9. It was a struggle waiting that long!

Matt's the best husband ever. He's respectful and loves me and takes an interest in everything I do. We rarely argue, and when we do, it's minor. He does his share of the work, which is really important. I feel like I have a true partner in life.

So since he's sick, we'll probably just get supper from somewhere. He's getting a little better, but he needs to rest.

Ornament finish: I finished an ornament from the Ginger Snaps kits today. It's a gift bag, but I'm not giving it away! This one was a pain in the butt to do. I actually had to pull out the sewing machine. It's not something I would have chosen to stitch, but it's OK. I still have a pile of ornaments to finish, but I think I'm done for this weekend. I couldn't find any good backing fabrics, but maybe I'll find some next week in College Station.

Kitten pic: Matt snapped this one with his phone.It's blurry, but it's great.

Cleaned out the stitching room


My stitching room wasn't too bad, but with the potential move in the spring, I thought it was best to tackle it now. I bought some mesh bags for my WIPs, and picked up some things that were just dragging. I also straightened out the bins that I keep my fabric and such in. I found stuff I didn't know I had! I also organized my cross stitch fabric in large Ziploc bags--one for linen, one for evenweave, and one for aida. I don't keep a lot of that stuff around; it's mostly leftovers. But at least now it will be easy to determine if I have the fabric for a new project. So I think my closet would be worthy of packing up if I needed to. I still have photos, my work portfolio, and some odds and ends to sort out. Not looking forward to that. Still, I feel pretty good about having cleaned up and getting a handle on what I have.

I stopped by Ginger's after my job interview this morning (ugh, I always feel so stupid at those things--and fat). I picked up some fabric and the 12 Days of Christmas leaflet for my Just Nan RR. The fabric for that's on order, so I hope I get it in time. I may need to pick up some specialty items for it too.

I have the fabric for my Love Quilts army Hummer (joy) and some black evenweave for a dragon I promised so long ago to a friend at work. Oh, and the fabric for Porcelain Nosegay. I didn't find the buttons I was looking for for an ornament finish, darn it, or Christmas fabric. I'm getting the urge to do ornament finishes, and that's rare!

Jeannie-Marie gave me the chart to Fenech's Beauty and the Beasts, the full piece to the quick stitch I finished. That was so sweet of her! She said it was for my help with setting up the stitcher's showcase, but I loved doing it. It must be the organizer in me.

Matt's still home sick with his ear infection, poor thing.

Kitten: Hathor got her stitches out today. Apparently she was pulling on them, and that made them bleed a bit. It's pooched out some, which the vet said was layers of skin underneath healing. I gave her the last of her pain meds today.

Christmas ornament finish


I decided to finish this Christmas ornament. I have a bunch stitched but just haven't finished them up. I don't enjoy the finishing nearly as much as the stitching.

It's from the Just Cross Stitch ornament magazine and is done by Mosey 'N Me. It's not really my style (sort of primitive), but it was one of the kits from Ginger's last year. I do like it, and I think it finished up well. Of course I had to get advice from Matt about centering it in the triangle, and he never fails.

It's a Cajun thing: I keep seeing this commercial about visiting Louisiana, and Dan Akroyd is in it. I know he likes the place, but does he have to lay on the Cajun accent? He's from Canada!!!

My stuff came in!


At long last the order I placed over a month ago came in! Of course, it was pretty beat up because they crammed it into a small mailer, and it was missing one of my fabrics. I won't order from them again. I'll just get my LNS to order it, which seems to take less time.

So here are some projects I want to do:

-- I got Just Nan's Witch Way and Flower Girls, plus the fabric for Honeysuckle Rose. I can start those whenever I feel like it. And of course I don't feel like it anymore.

-- I need to order the fabric for Just Nan's Porcelain Nosegay.

-- I bought the HAED mermaids for my round robin. They're larger than the angels, but I think they'll work OK. I hope. I also bought Reone Silver Dragon for someone's piece on dragons.

-- I saw a Lizzie Kate Acorn Scissor Case I liked.

-- I was bored and also looked through Jeanette Douglas' site. I'm toying with getting her Summer Stitches (and other seasons). I don't need more stuff, argh!

-- I'm also thinking of getting some black Jobelan and doing a dragon piece (rather than doing it on aida). I promised it to a friend at work years ago.

-- Gotta get beads for another TW Futurecast too. This one's called Fire to go with Ice.

-- I read that Chatelaine is doing a roses and butterfly mystery quilt. I may have to do that one.

-- I volunteered for a Just Nan round robin.

I'm also taking care of the TW forum Design Discussion now. I must be insane.

I also got a nifty magnet to hold my needle on my fabric. I keep damaging my tongue by putting needles in my mouth, not to mention dropping needles that way.

I finished my round robin outlining today. Not sure what I want to work on next.

Kitten: Hathor pulled out one of her stitches last night, which has Matt worrying. She must have gotten the knot loose because she didn't damage her skin. We're watching her today to make sure she doesn't split open or pull out more stitches. I'll include some pics of her. She's been tackling Anubis lately, and he's been taking it with good grace.

Diet: I topped out at 310 pounds today, my heaviest. I'm starting the Atkins shakes today. We've been so bad because we were sick. My foot has been hurting, so no exercise for a while.

Job interview: I go in Thursday for an interview. Parking on campus is going to be a terror. I'm really not looking forward to that aspect of it.

HAED RR Angel of Love HD


I finished my section of Angel of Love yesterday for the HAED round robin I joined. The first mailout date is early November, but I'm glad I got an early start. I also volunteered for a Just Nan RR, but I haven't heard anything about that one yet.

I like the piece, but I'm sad that the details in her fingers are lost. And the heart charm dangling from her pinkie is just a blob. That's my biggest gripe with HAEDs. You never know if they'll turn out well until after you're completely finished. They could include a color image of the stitches, but they won't. I've asked several times and been ignored. Grrr. And yes, I have had a piece turn out really bad and had to get it recharted.

It seems people like the border I've chosen. I like it too. I'm working on the middle section where I'm putting "Selena Fenech." That's kind of a pain, but I think it will be striking and give some purpose to the piece.

I still have two silk gauze kits to do, probably after I finish outlining the RR piece. I'd like to get that one out of the way and ready to mail out.

My order of Just Nans FINALLY shipped yesterday. Woohoo! Now I can see if it includes the fabric I wanted or not.

Kitten: Hathor's doing well after her surgery. She's randomly tackling Anubis around the head, and he sometimes notices. We're watching those stitches because she pulls on them with her teeth.

Mom: Mom was going to come visit this weekend, but with Matt still sick, I'd hate for her to catch this junk. He now has a sinus infection, probably due to his body being weak from the virus.

Doctor's office: I saw the specialist for my liver. My doctor's office didn't send over all the blood test results, just one of them. So, he really couldn't get a good idea of what's going on, though it does look like a virus. My doctor's office said the specialist only requested the latest test results, not all of them, and they had no way of knowing. They were a little indignant that I was mad because they hadn't sent them all over. I assumed that my doctor would tell them what needed to be sent over because the specialist sure wouldn't know. That's apparently not the case, and the only one looking after me is me (and Matt). Sheesh. I just can't assume that they're doing their job. Oh, the specialist said I need to lose weight. Ya think!

Started my HAED round robin piece


I'm doing a round robin with a few other ladies from the HAED board. My piece will be Selina Fenech's angels and mermaids. I'm not fond of the fairies, so I figured it was OK to leave them out. I needed a change from The Awakening for a bit, so I decided this needed some time. The first mailout is in November, and that will be here before you know it.

I outlined 3.5 of the top squares in black, going for the nouveau look. I couldn't stand to wait any longer, so I started working on my Angel of Love. She's mostly random stitches right now. I think she'll look good in a little while. So many strange pinks!

I decided for the signature blocks, I want to do the name of the piece, like "love" for mine, with the person's first name under it. Only problem is that "compassion" won't quite fit. Argh.

My silk gauze kits of the two other cats came in. That was super fast delivery from the eBay seller! I also managed to get Wolk's Metamorphosis in a trade. Woohoo! I've loved that one for a while and was really sad to have missed it. Someone else has already stitched a good bit of it. That's less fun if I stitch it too, but it's still a great piece.

Kitten: Hathor went into heat Saturday. Ugh. She wasn't nearly as bad today, and she gets fixed Tuesday. Anubis beats her up when she tackles him, and of course she has to squeal.

Sick: I'm feeling better, other than being tired. Matt's feeling bad now, which is not good news. I go for more blood tests Monday, and he'll probably get some too.

Hepatitis A scare


Sunday night I threw up and had a really bad pain just under my heart. I couldn't get comfortable and spent most of the night dozing. I assumed it was my hiatal hernia, so I decided to wait and go to the doctor. Matt and the doctor thought it was a gall bladder attack, so I went for blood work and an ultrasound.

It wasn't the gall bladder, so the doctor thought hepatitis A. Boy was I grossed out! The transmission is fecal to oral, and I was mad at someone. I took another blood test, however, and that ruled out hepatitis A. The doc said maybe a virus that attacked my liver. Like Matt says, when they don't know what's wrong with you, it's a virus.

My liver levels are approaching normal, which is a good thing. I'm going to go back to work tomorrow. I have very slight nausea, but the big thing is that I'm just so tired. I have an appointment with a liver specialist next week. Another blood test tomorrow.

Matt's been home taking care of me. Since we don't know what it could be, it's best to have someone watch me for fever or something serious. And he wants to stay home. :)

Stitching: I finished another page of The Awakening today (page 17). I didn't win the stitching competition (missed by about 500 stitches), but then I don't like feeling trapped into stitching. I 'm apparently not the only one.

I also ordered the other two silk gauze cat kits. That's my reward for slogging through this illness.

My order still hasn't shipped from the online store. No more orders from them, ever!

Job search: I have a phone interview tomorrow. Ack, butterflies! Oh well, no biggie either way.

You Were Hatched HD


I finished TW's You Were Hatched. I did another page of The Awakening.

For a better pic...

Having a rotten time right now


Life sucks at the moment. So many little things are piling up that they're getting us down. First, the president of the homeowner's association is having it out with Matt, who is the vice president. The guy's completely incompetent, yet he faults Matt for not doing anything for National Night Out, which isn't even a function of the HMA! The guy has decided that he's the architecture committee, even though by law it has to be made up of three people. He's allowed swimming pools to go in, which are forbidden. He's considering allowing solar panels, which are also restricted. He said in the newsletter that there's no grass height restriction, even though if you read the deed restriction, it says 6 inches. Is he going to print a retraction? No way. I don't think he's even read the deed restriction. He's not too bright. Update: Matt resigned from the HMA board. I hate giving in to bad behavior, but it's probably the best thing. He's never going to change things with the idiot around, and it's too much stress. He did get to send in a scathing email with his resignation.

Anubis had to go to the vet again today. His eye is red and pusy, and the vet said it could be a form of herpes, which is incurable. We have to give him eye drops. Plus, they apparently mis-weighed him last time, so he hasn't lost any weight. We have to start monitoring how much he eats.

I also want to move and can't because we have to pay off credit card bills and work on the house a little. Maybe in the spring. I applied for a job and took the writing test, so now I'm waiting. I hate this part.

Matt's mom is in the hospital, and I think it's just a matter of time. She's so sick and in pain.

So generally I'm just blah right now.

Black and White Cat HD


I'm on a roll! I finished my first silk gauze project the other day. I love the outcome, though the actual stitching was rather tedious. I'm glad I chose a simple design for my first one, rather than a HAED. I do want to get the other two cat kits, but I think I'll hold off for a little while so I don't spend too much money.

I started another piece, Teresa Wentzler's You Were Hatched. I have all but the mother dragon's wing done. I'm waiting on a Dinky Dye floss as well, if Ginger's can order it.

This week is the HAED competition. I need to get as many stitches done as possible, but with all the confetti I'm working on at the moment, there's no way I'll win. Oh well, I'll give it a try. I'm still pretty fast because of the two-handed method.

I still haven't received my items. I'm not ordering from that store again if I can help it.

Work: I got a call Friday about the job I applied for. I have to take a writing test this week. Butterflies in the stomach, of course.

Diet: I was really bad Friday. I'm so discouraged about the diet. I just feel I'll never lose the weight. I decided I just can't eat chicken anymore. I hate it. I thought of going vegetarian, but I won't get enough protein. So, I bought some high-protein Atkins and Slim Fast shakes. I'll give that a try. So much of what I eat now I hate, so it won't be that big a sacrifice. I'll have a shake for breakfast, maybe a shake for lunch with something light. Then a salad and such for supper. At least Matt will have two meals out of the chicken and we won't have to cook it as often.

Kreinik cat silk gauze kit


My very first silk gauze kit came in. I was so excited I couldn't wait to order it.'s a lot tougher than I thought. It's hard to get the stitches to lie perfectly because the two parts of the silk strands don't stay together very well. I think it will look fine, but it's not something I can do for hours on end, and that's not just because it's small. It's also hard to bury your end threads. I have a good part of the kitty done, so I should have a HD soon.

I still haven't received my Just Nan stuff. Ugh. Or my fabric from Ginger's.

Organizing: I need to get rid of some stuff. I sold my Charming Tails cards on eBay, and I have a club kit left to sell. And then there's the wedding dress... It needs to be cleaned first. That's going to be a big bill, and then I'm worried they'll destroy it. It does need to get done.

Gaming: I tried EQII a little, rather half-heartedly. Matt won't play it, so it's kind of pointless. I'm frustrated because I want to have that same feeling of excitement from when I first played City of Heroes. I'm really hoping Vanguard will be it, when it comes out, but I have a feeling it won't be. As much as I love stitching, I need another hobby, this one with some interaction. I spend all day at home working, and I'm bored!

Decided on a Just Nan RR piece


So I volunteered for the Just Nan RR since they had a few people drop out and it shouldn't take that long. I decided to go with the 12 Days of Christmas. There are seven people, so people can opt to do one or two blocks. I ordered the fabric for the piece from Ginger's today (along with some other fabric and the beads for Futurecast). I'll do it two across and six down and make a bellpull out of it. Or I'll let Mom make a bellpull out of it. :D

I think I've decided to go with DMC for Witch Way instead of silks. It would cost $48 for silks, which I can't really justify for such a small piece. I just love Halloween pieces.

I have so many things I can work on now that I'm in a quandary. What to do next? So I just keep working on The Awakening until I can decide.

Weather: It's overcast and drizzly, which hasn't been common lately. It feels like fall! I love that feeling so much. Unfortunately, it's probably just going to get hot again in a few days.

Kitten: The vet checked out Hathor, and she's fine. We'll bring her in again Friday to get her stitches out. She's apparently been chewing on the thread.

Page 15 of the Awakening


Saturday Matt had the guys over so they could play Unreal Tournament all day. And I mean all day--8:00 a.m. to 12:00 a.m. I ran out of small projects (Stitching Bits and Bobs is not speedy sometimes), so I decided to try to finish the current page of the Awakening. I finished it today, but it took longer than I thought it would.

So I should get some fabric and stuff for my Just Nans soon. Plus my silk gauze kit from eBay and my round robin fabric from Ginger's. The HAED BB is having a stitching contest from the 14th to 20th, so I figure I'll work on The Awakening then. I'll play computer games this coming week so I can then spend the following week stitching. I probably won't win, but I might as well try.

DVDs: I was watching the first season of Farscape again, and two episodes are pixellated and unwatchable. ARGH! I'll have to try the discs on another DVD player so I can see what's to blame. I rather hope it's the DVDs. Those I can replace, though at a cost.

House: I got an email from a subdivision we'd like to live in, but the houses there are $450k and up. I wonder if we could just get a small house built on the land out there. It would probably still be out of our price range. With our current house's value the same or less than we paid for it, we're not going to get much out of any sale we make. That's what I get for using the proceeds from my last house sale to pay off some credit cards.

Lost Dragon Sampler HD


This one didn't take long at all. I kept having to frog that second-to-last row because I'd miscount. I really like the way it turned out. Those silks are so vibrant, and the beadwork is gorgeous, if I do say so myself.

I still haven't gotten the fabric for my Just Nans. The owner just emailed me today, so they haven't even gone out yet. I'm going to have to look for a new store to order from.

I did break down and order the silk gauze kit I was drooling over. It's of a black and white cat.

For a better pic...

Kitten: Hathor was really sick and hasn't been eating. I got some meds for her yesterday, and she's perked right up. She's not eating, but she's drinking a little. I'm really tired of forcing meds down unwilling cats.

House, etc.: I'm going nuts because I really want to move. We've looked at places online where you can get a few acres, and I'd love to have some land. The problem is that we might break even on selling this house. That doesn't give us any down payment, plus we need to pay off credit cards, and I need to get a job in Austin. I keep looking at jobs but no leads yet. I'd hate to have to wait a few years, but I may have to. I'm also waiting for Vanguard, a new MMO, to come out, and it's driving me nuts. I hate waiting! I'd love to have a game to play, but City of Heroes/Villains is getting boring.

Lost Dragon Sampler by Dragon Dreams, Jump for Joy HD


I had to order fabric for my other Just Nans, so I started working on another small project, Lost Dragon Sampler by Dragon Dreams. It was a kit from a class I missed at Ginger's. DD is releasing it next month, so I didn't really scoop much. It's fairly simple, so it shouldn't take long. It's very cute. No pics online to link to, though.

Oh, and I forgot to post my HD for Jump for Joy from the 30th. I love this one. I may have to paint a frame myself.

Kitten: Hathor is doing well. She went to the vet today. She's got a runny eye and a temperature, but hopefully she'll get over it soon. I wonder if it's the same stuff Anubis had.

Frost Flower HD


I finished this one in a day. I really enjoyed it. I tried some HAED stitching tonight, but I need a break.

I ordered Flower Girls (a limited edition that's already sold out), Witch Way (a Halloween piece I've had my eye on for a while), a needle holder, and a mesh project bag. I feel guilty for spending money, but I want it!

Kitten: We picked up the new kitten from my friend Dolores. She's an orange tabby and very friendly and playful. She purrs like crazy and keeps kneading everything. I need to take some pics. Anubis and she are hissing at each other, but I think they'll get over it. She instigates some of it, I think mostly because he's been snotty to her. She's taken a few swipes at him too. So far I like the name Hathor, though Matt says we're still deciding.

Fence: We finished putting the fence back up today (kind of crooked, though). It was 102 degrees, and I just can't take the heat. Bleh!

Silk gauze...mmmmmm...


Someone posted about silk gauze kits at Crossed Wing Collection. I'm highly tempted. I just love the chickadees, especially Chickadee in Flight. But do I want to have more WIPs? No! I want to finish what I've started. But they're so cute. And the idea of even tinier stitching just intrigues me, not to mention the thought of fondling silk. I've asked to see if people know of other silk gauze kits...maybe I'll find something even better. I'll hold off buying anything to see if this urge persists.

I also started organizing my threads for Eternal Promise. I felt like doing something a little different while Matt was setting up his computer with new hardware. I have floss all over the place. All the more reason to finish the WIPs I already have!

Found other places:
Threads Through Time
Heart's Content
Micro-Stitchery (Dollhouse Items)
Vintage Designs

Love Quilts square finished


I finished a quilt square for Love Quilts called Fish and Bubbles from Stoney Creek. I added the seaweed, which was the first thing I've ever designed, go figure. I wanted to make the image more square than rectangle, but I'm not sure I prefer it this way. I also added 032 blending filament to the large bubbles, though it was a pain. Matt was right--it does add a nice touch. One more project knocked down--yay! I love finishes. Now I can wash it and mail it off.

I also finished another page of The Awakening. I love it. I'm amazed I'm not sick of it by now.

Argh--What a weekend


This weekend is the double XP event for City of Heroes and City of Villains. So of course we got all our chores out of the way and planned to play all weekend. Yeah, right! First Matt's computer dies. We have another he can play on, but it's not the same. We're also having to spend over $1,000 for an upgrade for his computer.

Then I go to a drive-thru, and my window won't go back up. So we take it in to the dealership Saturday and have to spend $650 or so to fix the window and the AC, which had a short. We still need to bring it someplace to get a new radio and back speakers, and the air bag light of course didn't go out while the car was in the shop. Plus there's the drive back home to pick up the car Tuesday morning. Not looking forward to driving in Austin.

Then yesterday we had a storm with really high winds that knocked down two sections of fence and tore another partly loose. We fixed the loose section, and now Matt is out there trying to dig out the concrete from the post. I gave up a while ago. We'll have to replace the soil, dig a new hole, pour concrete, and put the fence back up. Not all today, of course. Can I scream now?

Gaming: We did get our main villains up to 33. My fly trap is a bit disappointing. A lot of fights, it just sits there and does nothing. We also played with Twister, and Loup is up to 39. She took two nosedives yesterday rather unexpectedly. Oh well, knocked out the debt quickly.

Stitching: I did get a little stitching done this weekend. I won't finish the next page on The Awakening this weekend, but I will sometime this week. I hope. I also need to finish the bubbles on my Love Quilts piece. It shouldn't take long, but I'm just not in the mood. I may not start another HAED like I had planned. I keep waiting to get bored with The Awakening, but it hasn't happened yet. Very unusual for me. I wonder why.

Kitten: I may pick up the kitten this coming week or the weekend. It depends on when I need to go in to work, I guess. I really want a Maine coon cat, but we've committed to this one, and Matt really wants a kitten. I hope this one works out. Blue eyes, white longish fur...sounds beautiful, even if it's not a coon.

DVDs: I bought the whole series of The Vicar of Dibley (Brit com). It's very funny, and I usually miss it on Saturday nights. This way I have something to watch while I'm stitching. Not sure if Matt will like it. Ack, I just remembered I forgot to buy Nanny McPhee. Darn it!

A hard decision about Osiris


The past two weeks have been really tough. Matt and I finally came to the decision that Osiris was not right for us. Osiris insisted on doing his business on the carpet in whatever dark corner he could find. He required constant supervision. He had no personality, he didn't play, and all he wanted was to eat and be in your lap. The vet said he had been malnourished and taken from mom too soon. He might never develop into a normal cat. Matt really didn't believe he'd be anything more than a problem, so it wouldn't get better. I had to agree, though it tore me up. Matt brought Osiris back to Petsmart Sunday; I just couldn't bear to go with him. Honorina, the rescue lady, said they would work with him and find him a home. I really hope they do. As patient as we are, we couldn't deal with him. I feel so bad because I made a commitment to that kitten I couldn't keep. I'm relieved not to have him around, and that's really sad. Like Matt said, he'd come home from work and dread seeing the kitten. That's just not right.

Since Anubis seems to have contracted something from the kitten, we're going to wait two weeks to get a new kitten. I'm just impatient, though I know he's right. I want our family to get back to normal, and I'm looking forward to a kitten that acts like a kitten. But Osiris took such effort that I know we do need a break.

I have a vet appointment for Anubis. They mentioned feline leukemia and AIDS, which he wasn't vaccinated for because he's an inside cat. Now I'm worried. Had they given me the choice, I'd have said vaccinate him for everything. Argh! If anything happens to Anubis, I will be so upset. He's the only baby we have left. We have Lufy, but cats are just near and dear to me. I don't have that same bond with a dog, though I do love her.

Such a depressing few weeks. I'm stressing about the cat situation, but thankfully the basketball at night has stopped. I guess I won't be back to normal until Anubis gets a clean bill of health and we get a new kitten settled in.

Stitching: I finished another page on The Awakening, the first of the third row. Next weekend we'll be playing CoV/CoH since it's going to be double XP. No stitching for me! That also means getting the chores done during the week. Get to it!

Diet: I've been eating healthy, but I've been snacking too much. Not surprisingly, I haven't lost weight. We did exercise every weekday last week, which I'm very proud of. I didn't exercise today because of tummy troubles, but I will get it done sometime today.

Argh, no cable


We got our cable back after almost two days. Apparently Matt hit it with the weed eater.

I finished another page on The Awakening, and that completes the second row of pages. Woohoo! So much more to go.

Osiris went to the vet yesterday. Apparently he's only 8-9 weeks old and pretty undernourished. Today he ate several times, 2-3 pieces each time. He's also had trouble using the litterbox. I put him in the box--nothing. Then he goes sniff behind the desk, I put him in the box, and he eventually uses it. (I think I just scared him when I yelled at him for starting to pee behind the desk.) Very weird. I was pretty upset to hear that he might have given Anubis a disease. I'll just have to watch both cats closely.

I've been depressed the last few days. I attribute this to the stress of the kitten and the basketball players in the circle. Also, I've decided that I just don't like working at home. I'm going to start applying for jobs in Austin. I have my references now. I just need to scan some of my samples. If I'm going to apply for jobs, I also need to lose weight. I'm so self-conscious interviewing while I look so bad, and I know some people may be prejudiced against fat people, conscious or not. So, course of action: lose weight, get a job in Austin, get a house in Austin. Maybe that will make me happy. Maybe.

I started exercising this week, walking on the treadmill for 10 minutes each morning. It's not much, but it tires me out. I'll increase the time each week, I think.

Finished another page of The Awakening


Hurray, I finished another page of The Awakening last night. See it here: It was all trees, which had a lot of scattered stitches. It took longer than some of the other pages. I admit it looks really good, but it was pretty boring to stitch at the time. The next half page is trees as well, but it's small and will finish up the second row of pages (hopefully this weekend). The next row of pages is pretty uneventful except for some birds. The row after that is the girl, which I've been looking forward to since I started the piece. I set my goal for the rest of year at 10 pages -- 1 down, 9 to go! I think it should be pretty easy to do, unless something else grabs my attention. This one has held me for quite a while, better than I expected. The BB keeps me going. I just love getting comments -- must be my training as a kid to love praise. Finishing a page is like getting an A+. ;-)

Having Matt take the kitten so I could stitch was such a relief last night. Now I have some idea what SAHMs go through. I was so stressed by the end of the day with his screaming. I was also thinking about the basketball situation, but they didn't play last night. I feel pretty good now. If I can just make it til tonight.... The kitten seems to have a preference for me, but that's just because I spend so much time with him. Matt can have him all weekend!

Anubis is getting used to the kitten a little. No more hissing. And he's started to eat again and sleep with us. My poor put-upon kitty.

Poor lighting, but Matt took this picture this morning.

The new kitten


Matt's named him Osiris, continuing on the Egyptian gods theme. He's lying on my neck as I type. I have never seen a kitten this affectionate/needy. He wants to be held and petted all the time. Phew, and he farts. If I put him down, he starts crying. He cried for two hours straight today when I put him in the bathroom. It gave me a splitting headache. He's worse than an infant!

We brought him home Tuesday from Petsmart. The name on his papers is Joey Riffle. It's really freaky because Horus was named Joey West; I checked. Maybe this is the kitten we're supposed to have, as annoying as he is.

He also peed in Anubis' kitty bed this morning. I'm guessing he just didn't know where to go or he didn't want to go back in the dreaded bathroom.

He's not eating much. Matt's supposed to get him some Science Diet today.

Anubis is getting used to him. He's not thrilled, but he's mostly stopped hissing. He'll sniff the kitten and let the kitten prance around him a little. He's also eating the kitten's food.

So I'm stressed about the kitten, and I'm stressed about the neighbors. Damn kids were playing basketball in the circle at 11 last night. I can hear the sound in my bedroom over the AC and over the floor fan. I asked them to stop, and one smart ass said they were just trying to have fun. Well, I'm trying to sleep so I can work tomorrow, genius. No one in your family may work, but we sure do. I then called the cops because they wouldn't stop. Who knows if the cops showed up or if the kids were even still there. Matt said he thought he saw a white car. At one point there were 10 kids in the circle. My parents would NEVER allow me out at night. Apparently these kids' parents don't care. They're pre-teens, I think, and too young to be out that late. I really hate this low-class neighborhood. That's not being snobbish--they really just don't care about anything. Given a few years, this neighborhood will look like crap.

I applied for a job at UT, but I need to send in my resume, etc. I hate going to interviews, fat as I am. But I'll give it a shot. I might have to take a pay cut, but then we can move into Austin and I can work in an office again. Will I like it? Can it be better than what I'm doing now? I don't know, but I do know I'm not satisfied with my job as it is.

More about Horus


Matt had said maybe to getting a kitten this weekend, but now he's said not yet. I told him that we can wait as long as he wants. I just hate not knowing when. Same old thing with me.
Back to remembering Horus... When we brought the kittens home, Horus meowed at the top of his lungs nonstop. He just hated being in a moving vehicle. Poor guy. When we got home, Horus explored, while Anubis sulked. They eventually adjusted and showed us their personalities. Horus was Matt's cat, and Anubis was mine, so to speak. Horus would go up to Matt at his computer and put his paws on Matt's leg. Matt would pick him up, lean back in his chair, and lay Horus on his chest. Horus would just purr like crazy (for him--he was never a very loud purrer). He crossed his front legs and rubbed his cheek on Matt's nose. It was the cutest thing.

Horus loved birds. He would sit in the front window with his upper half in the window itself (the windows are almost floor to ceiling).

Starting to blog...and how Horus came to us


I might as well give it a shot. But then I'm probably too boring to interest anyone. ;-)

The most recent devastation to enter our lives was the death of Horus, one of our two cats. So let me chronicle first how he came to us.

We adopted him about three years ago, the day after we got back from our honeymoon in Las Vegas. I really wanted cats in my life again, after having to give them up for the ex-husband (he was allergic). Matt and I went to Petco, where I found a lovely Siamese adult cat named Samantha that I wanted to adopt. Unfortunately, so did someone else. The seller was Lisa, who took animals from the shelter, rehabilitated them, and then adopted them out for a fee. So we went back to Lisa's house to look at prospective kittens since Samantha was taken. I wanted a Russian blue, but the one she had had an eye infection, which Matt said no to. We looked at a few, but when Matt saw Horus, he was a goner.

Horus was such a tiny thing, barely three pounds, with hairs sticking out every which way. Cute in an awkward sort of way, but Matt has a soft spot for tiny helpless things. His brother was much bigger and looked like a flame-point Siamese. He was white with some orange points. Anubis suited me just fine. He reminded me of my childhood cat, Phoebe, without looking too much like her. Horus poked around Lisa's house and didn't seem too worried by us. Anubis was more timid and standoffish.

So we went home that day with two kittens. We soon discovered which would be the good cat, and thus named Horus, and which would be the bad cat, and thus named Anubis, despite their coloring. We had just spent our honeymoon at the Luxor, so the names seemed appropriate. They were originally named Jimmy and something else...can't remember.

We had to fatten up Horus. He was such a tiny thing. I'm sure his brother ate all the food, so we had to make sure Horus got some too. Lisa had said that these two were the only ones she had managed to save from the litter, and at first she worried about Horus. It's amazing what huge, beautiful cats they grew into.

(Horus is the black-and-white kitten, and Anubis is the orange-and-white kitten.)