Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Barnabee's Quest SAL

Here's my first night of Stitching on Barnabee's Quest for the SAL. It's such a cute piece. I had to blow the pic up a bit so you could see the bee and butterfly (click it). It's a smaller piece than I thought--only about 3.5 inches across.

I also learned that the hive-like structure they used to keep bees in is called a skep.

Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Jenny's Just Nan RR

I finished my portion of Jenny's RR this evening. I took sections from Just Nan's Hummingbead Heaven. Jenny's going to be making a book out of all the sections people stitch.

I had to do a few substitutions because the fabric is white, and I had to backstitch the bunny to make him stand out more. The scan is pretty bad--it looks better in person.

I'm working on The Awakening here and there. Tomorrow night I'll work on Barnabee's Quest since I have to game on Thursday.

Diet: I had to quit Weight Watchers because I'm pregnant. I'll still watch what I eat, but the doctor has already told me I'm not to lose weight while pregnant.

January goals reviewed

I did a lot of stitching this month. My mom thinks I should cut back on the stitching and do more housework. Yeah, right!

My Stitching Treasures--finish stitching it Almost but not quite
HAED The Awakening--finish 2 pages Nope
Love Quilts square--begin working on it I had to finish it because I didn't realize the deadline was Feb. 1
TrickORTreat--finish making it into a box, correct problems if I can Nope. I'm going to take this off the list for a while.
Exchanges--Work on HAED RR and next Just Nan RR; do finishing of birthday piece I sent off the birthday piece and did my RR work

I also figured out what I had ordered the Alpaca thread for! (That was really annoying when I didn't know what I had ordered it for.) Apparently I had looked at the back of the chart for Hummingbead Heaven where there was also a mini chart. The main chart doesn't use the thread, so I'll have to do the mini too.

Monday, January 29, 2007

I'm pregnant!

I took two home pregnancy tests yesterday, and they were both positive. The tests are as accurate as blood tests, so it looks definite! I'm about two and a half weeks along at this point. Fortunately I kept track of everything. That puts my due date September 20.

I thought I had started my period, but all I had was spotting, so I started wondering. I read online about implanatation bleeding, so I figured it was a good idea to take the test. Matt was in shock and says he's scared. I'm excited and am trying not to think of the scary aspects of being a parent.

I told my mom, and I know she's really excited (hi, Mom!). I told people at work too, and they were happy for me. I made a OB/GYN appointment for next week where they'll do the blood test and go through the whole routine.

Stitching: I'm working on The Awakening right now, but it's slow going. I need to switch to Barnabee's Quest Wednesday for the SAL (we game on Thursday). I also received the HAED and Just Nan RRs, so I also need to think about those.

Blog stuff: I entered all the blogs I read into Bloglines. That makes it much easier to keep up with blogs.

Friday, January 26, 2007

Rose Quilt update, with missing fibers

Of course, right after my last post, I received the floss I was missing for Chatelaine's Rose Quilt. Yay! So I filled in the colors I was missing on the butterfly and added the gold metallics. They make a lot of difference. I also have some larger pics on my website.

I have moved over to The Awakening, which has been much neglected. I don't think I'll get my two pages done for this month, especially since we're gaming this weekend. I'll have to make up the pages. On the agenda beginning February is the Barnabee's Quest SAL and the next installment of the Rose Quilt, which will only be one square. Whew!

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Rose Quilt update, block 2 finished

I finished the second block of my Chatelaine today, minus those fibers I'm still missing. I'll fill in the bottom border next month since there will be only one design released, not two like in January. That border can get a little tedious, but it's very pretty.

I ordered a book on how to make braiding since I can't ever seem to find cording. We'll see how that goes.

I went through some boxes of my mother-in-law's craft stuff yesterday (she passed away months ago). Unfortunately, she was a heavy smoker, and everything smells heavily of smoke. My throat and eyes were burning afterwards. There are a few items I can salvage. Can you believe that Qsnaps can smell like smoke? I washed them and left them out for a while, and I think they're OK. There's one piece that my MIL had almost finished, so I'll soak that in Orvus and then try to finish it. Her other kits weren't started, but they were taken out of the bags and such. I may offer them on one of the boards to see if another smoker wants them. They're not my style (Dimensions mostly). I just don't want to toss them because I know how heartbroken I would be if someone threw away my stash.

Gaming: This weekend is the double experience point event on City of Heroes. That means a weekend of gaming. No time for stitching!

Diet: I did so-so on the diet this week. I lost another 1.4 pounds in the last two weeks. Blah, but at least I didn't gain. I did actually get on the exercise bike for 10 minutes Tuesday. Any exercise is an accomplishment for me after the forced inactivity with the broken toe. Which has healed VERY crooked, by the way.

Sunday, January 21, 2007

Rose Quilt update, block 2

Here's my progress on the second block of Chatelaine's Rose Quilt. I'm missing some colors, so the butterfly isn't filled in yet. I'll probably keep working on this until I finish the borders. We get a new block in February.

I haven't finished my two pages of The Awakening for this month. I'm behind, ack! I want to be able to start Just Nan's Barnabee's Quest for the SAL in February too.

6 weird things about me

Sharon tagged me, so here we go!

6 Weird Things about Me
The rules: Each player of this game starts with the "6 weird things about you." People who get tagged need to write in their blog of 6 weird things as well as state this rule clearly. In the end, you need to choose 6 people to be tagged and list their names.

Since I don't really like tagging people, I'll ask for volunteers. ;-)

1. I hate geckos with a passion. I don't know what it is about them--the way they slither, their see-through skin, their icky little feet. If one gets in the house, it MUST be gotten rid of. I've vacuumed them up before and left the vacuum outside for a few days so they can either crawl out or die. Eeeeeeew!

2. I cannot participate in silly games. When I was in high school, I was a member of student council, and I just couldn't participate in those cute little mixer games. As an adult, we had to go to a team-building thing, which I absolutely dreaded. We had to run around and stuff, and I broke down in tears. I told them that it was my hip, which had been hurting, but I just couldn't make myself do those silly things. I thought it was a complete waste of time, but I also have a phobia of looking stupid. I guess it comes from being teased as a kid.

3. I have a severe case of verbal road rage when I drive. It's all smack talk--I'd never do anything stupid. People act like idiots when they get behind the wheel.

4. I like bats a lot. I'm fascinated by them. I had never seen them in Louisiana, but there are some in Texas. They're so graceful when they fly.

5. I don't eat onions or peppers. And I'm Cajun. My dad forced me to eat them when I was a kid, and most Cajun food has onions. To this day I won't eat them unless they're sliced thin and fried or completely unnoticeable. It's the texture that just gives me the willies. I'll pull the onion out of thick onion rings and just eat the breading.

6. I like fantasy and science fiction. That may not be that weird nowadays, but I felt like the freak of the week when I was growing up. I finally figured I needed to marry another weird person rather than dating "normal" people. And guess what, it worked!

I asked DH what was weird about me, and he said that was a loaded question!

Saturday, January 20, 2007

Rose Quilt update

I finished the first square last night. I'm still missing some gold Rainbow Gallery thread, but that should come in soon. I'll put the beads in later too.

The next square is a butterfly, and I'll start working on that today. I should have a good bit of stitching time. Matt's working on his computer.

I mailed my Love Quilts square today, so that's a load off my mind. Since OleTexas asked (can't remember your real name--ack!), the signature on my quilt square is just one I came up with.

Thursday, January 18, 2007

Military Hummer HD

It's not the most glamorous piece, but I stitched it because I figured a little boy would like it. This is a quilt square for Love Quilts. The little boy is Chris A., and his theme is heroes and the army. The square is due February 1, which had me scrambling. Fortunately, we had MLK Day off and two snows days (ice days really). I kinda got sick of stitching it, but I held the carrot of working on my Chatelaine before me. That will be the next thing that I work on now that the obligation stuff is out of the way.

And yes, it took me 6 days of almost constant stitching!

Ice everywhere: Today in Texas we thawed after a few days of being iced over. I tried to get in the car Tuesday, and my car door was iced shut! That told me that I shouldn't go anywhere. Our oak tree looked like it was split in half with all the ice pulling the branches down. Today the icicles along the eaves of the house have been crashing down, and the dog has been barking and terrified. I drove today--sheets of ice kept coming off my car and onto my windshield. Kinda cool!

Ouch: Due to the ice storm, I couldn't get to the pharmacy to get my Nexium refilled. So today the heartburn hit me full force. Ow.


I placed an order in December for some scissors and other stuff from Silver Needle during their sale. Today I get the package and there are no scissors!

I called Silver Needle, and the lady said the sale only covered in-stock items and the website said that. I don't remember seeing that, but OK. They could have emailed me or put something on their website telling us what was in stock and what wasn't. Had I known, I wouldn't have ordered the other small items and wasted the postage! All the lady could say was that's the chance you take. Well, I won't be taking any more chances with them, and they are off my list.

Sunday, January 14, 2007

Frantic stitching on Love Quilts

Since I discovered that my deadline is February 1, not later in the month like I thought, I've been doing nothing but stitching on my Army Hummer for Love Quilts this weekend. I have more than half of it done, so I'm somewhat relieved that I'll be able to get it in.

I was supposed to work on The Awakening for the HAED SAL this weekend, but I reluctantly didn't participate. What a letdown.

I also got accepted to the Stitching Bloggers Exchange Bulletin Board (SBEBB)!!! I'm so excited. I kept reading blogs and seeing all the lovely exchanges. Now I can actually participate! Now to find the time...

Weather: The weather's been cold and icy--finally some winter weather! Unfortunately, it's limiting what we can do. The grocery store was a madhouse Saturday in preparation for the expected storm. So far today, nothing but drizzle.

Saturday, January 13, 2007

Just Nan RR for Kari

I finished my piece for Kari's round robin last night. I selected bands from Just Nan's A Summer's Day. I just love the little strawberries.

Next is my Love Quilts piece, I think. I also need to work on The Awakening this weekend. So glad we have Monday off!

Diet: I think I forgot to mention I went to Weight Watchers Thursday evening and lost 7.4 pounds on my first week. That's about usual for me. It's the following weeks that will be tougher. I also haven't had a soft drink (soda for some of you) in two weeks. The only caffeine I've had was tea when I went out to lunch with work. Surprisingly, I haven't missed it.

Friday, January 12, 2007

Progress on Chatelaine's Rose Quilt

Here's an update on my Rose Quilt. I received some of my missing supplies from European Crossstitch Company yesterday, but I realized I have a Love Quilts square due February 1! Eep. So I need to put this one away for now, reluctantly.

I think I overcommitted for January. I have my Just Nan RR, a Love Quilts Square, two pages of the Awakening, and Rose Quilt to do. Good thing I have MLK Day off, but I don't think it's going to be enough.

Thursday, January 11, 2007

Birthday surprise

We don't usually do birthdays at work (my birthday was December 31), but my coworkers surprised me. They gave me a year's subscription to The Cross Stitcher magazine. I don't know much about it, but I've been wanting a subscription to something for a while. They also gave me a book called Something for Every Season that has four of the Teresa Wentzler rocking horses and other cute patterns. This was all in a band box that I'm now keeping my stitched Christmas ornaments in. I was going to go to Hobby Lobby that very day to buy one!

I'm working on the finishing of an exchange piece right now, plus putting a few more stitches in Chatelaine's Rose Quilt. I'll post a pic soon.

Reading: I'm onto Icefalcon's Quest by Barbara Hambly, a fantasy author I like. This book feels like one in the middle of a series, which I'm sure it is, so it's a little hard to get into. I had started it a while back and never finished, so I restarted it. I also ordered two more Mercedes Lackey books that came out in paperback recently. I can't wait to get those. I really like her elemental series.

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Received my New Year's exchange

Second post today... Seems to be the day for jars!

I got the neatest package from Melanie (Medieval Needle) as part of the Rotation Stitchers Bulletin Board New Year's exchange. She stitched a cute Kats by Kelly piece, and the jar has fortunes in it! The one for today is "Brush up on knock-knock jokes. They're on their way back." I of course love kitties, so I love the piece.

She also sent me other goodies: bath confetti, tealights, bath fizzes, a wishlist pad, and a weekly list pad. I love making lists, by the way, so that will come in handy!

I was so excited when I opened this. I feel completely spoiled, and she went above and beyond the call of duty. Thanks, Melanie!

Cheryl Ann received her goodies

I sent a few things to my friend Cheryl Ann (HasturTorres). We unfortunately didn't get to meet up during Christmas time, so this is a belated Christmas present. I stitched Dragon Dreams' Little Red Dragonlet. This is a freebie that Jennifer Aikman-Smith did exclusively for Ginger's (my LNS in Austin), whose owner collects Little Red Riding Hood stuff. I also threw in a few other goodies.

I'm stitching on Rose Quilt still. I have a few thread colors missing, so that's a little annoying, but at least I can get a start. The ECC kits aren't going to be out until February, I've heard, which is when I'll get most of my missing supplies.

Blogger: What's the deal with spacing? I have to work with it to get a space between paragraphs. Sometimes it works, and sometimes it doesn't. Blogrolling also isn't working for me again; it may be time to switch.

Monday, January 08, 2007

Chatelaine's Rose Quilt started

This is the top of the decorative border for one block of the Chatelaine Rose Quilt. There are 16 blocks, and we get one or two blocks a month. So far I have the first two to stitch. I'm still gathering my materials, which are going to be pretty pricey. I'll add the beads at the end since I don't want them to get in the way of my Qsnaps. This piece is huge--I have lots of fabric to manage as I stitch.

I've taken a short break from My Stitching Treasures. I started an over-one peacock in the wrong place, and now I have to rip it out. Ugh. All I have left is the top block and the satin-stitched border.

I need to get working on my Just Nan RR and another exchange piece. So much to do!

Diet: I've been doing well on my diet. I think I've lost 8 pounds so far, which is water weight. Being this heavy, it's easy for me to lose 10 pounds in the first week. The following weeks will be harder.

Reading: When I start reading, I go nuts. I finished Mercedes Lackey's Sanctuary and loved it. Then I devoured L.E. Modesitt's Wellspring of Chaos, and I'm now reading Ordermaster. I may have to see if they have any more out in paperback.

Friday, January 05, 2007

We caught the vandal

Remember when I talked about a vandal cutting our Christmas lights? Well, last night Matt caught him on camera. Can you spot the vandal in this picture?

Wait for it...

How about this picture?

That's right, the vandal was a cute little bunny. Well, not so little. We've seen this huge rabbit running around our yard a few times, just recently. Only last night we were talking about how it could be the bunny, but the wires were sheered clean through. I guess that bunny has some sharp teeth! This is obviously not a wild bunny. Someone let it loose, probably because it had gotten so big. Someone very irresponsible.

So all that stress, all that anger, all those police reports, and that $300 surveillance camera were because of a bunny. I'm glad I never confronted the neighbor!

Now Matt has to follow up with the police, and we need to call animal control. I'm just afraid they'll put the bunny to sleep. We'd adopt it, but I don't know anything about rabbits.

Tuesday, January 02, 2007

New Year's exchange piece revealed

Delivery confirmation shows Gigi received my new year's exchange piece December 28, so I guess it's safe to show it off. I actually did two pieces. The first is Sanman Originals' Seasons. I did this one because it has all the months stitched around it. It was my first pillow, and I made the button nose for the snowman.

I didn't know if this was "new year" enough, so I did a second piece, Trail Creek Farms' New Year Celebrate with Me. It was my first cube-it, and I really like the way it came out.

Thanks for looking!

Monday, January 01, 2007

Goals for 2007

I'll start with stitching goals since those are pretty easy:

The Awakening--I'd like to finish this piece. If I do two pages a month, I can get it done.
Maggie the Messmaker--This is a UFO I've lost interest in stitching but would still like to finish. I know how gorgeous it will look. I have three UFOs, but it's only realistic to set one as a finishing goal, I think.
Frame pieces--I have lots of pieces waiting to be framed, so I'd like to get some of those on the wall, especially my Teresa Wentzlers.

The life goals are harder:

Lose weight--Yes, I've been trying to do this my whole life. I have to do it. So many things are waiting on this one thing, and I'm not getting any younger. I'd like to see Europe and Disney World again, and I can't do that as fat as I am.
Get pregnant--This depends on losing weight too. I'd be miserable if I were both fat and pregnant, but since I'm 37, I need to get going on this. I need to make a concerted effort to track my ovulation days.
Move into a new house--We want to get out of this neighborhood and buy a piece of land. I think selling this house and not taking a loss will be a challenge. There are 18 houses for sale already, and it's the off season. We need to get the house cleaned and painted and get the house listed ASAP. I hate living here, and it's stressing me out.
Work--Keep up with work stuff better and be more responsible.

So, in order to lose weight, I plan to join Weight Watchers and start riding the exercise bike. My foot's not up to using the tread mill yet. I've never been able to sustain exercise, so I need to work on strategies. Maybe I'll make friends at WW.

2006 was a pretty crappy year for us. We lost Horus, our dear kitty, suddenly. I think that was the hardest part for me. My grandmother passed away, which was hard, but she was old and had Alzheimers, and when things are that bad, passing is a mercy. The same holds true for Matt's mom's passing, but that was not easy either. I can't imagine losing my mother, and I know it was really hard on Matt. We also lost Karma, my dog who was staying with my mom, to a car accident, which was very traumatic for my mom. A lot of other things have gone wrong for us too, like my broken toe and Matt's month-long virus. None of them have been earth shattering, but the sheer volume has just weighed us down. I really hope 2007 is better.

And on that note--

Happy New Year!