Jul 31, 2008

Charity Golf Tournament

For the past 8 years or so, I’ve been the “official” photographer of the annual golf tournament that raises money for the local catholic school system. No, I’m not an alumni catholic schoolgirl. My boss is an alumni and since I’m a photographer, I participate via association. This one day event usually brings in $20,000+. Mostly the golfers consist of alumni from the schools, some of them have been golfing in this tournament for 21 years!

It’s sort of a “men’s club” kind of tournament as the only females on the course are me and a couple of country club women. I was told many years ago that women are allowed to play, but they’re not encouraged to. *hmpf*

With that said, it’s usually a fun day. I get a golf cart that I can zip around the course on photographing the sponsor signs and the four-somes. The morning started off just peachy… I jump off the cart, slip on the wet grass (pretty wet at 7am!), and promptly fall on my butt. I look around quick to see if anyone saw me, LOL. Of course, there were two guys on a golf cart coming toward me so I’m sure they saw. I felt something twinge in my knee, but I’m hoping it’s nothing. Shortly after that, I’m photographing another sponsor sign and... the sprinkler system pops on! Ack! I wondered why the leaves of the trees were dripping when it hadn’t rained! Luckily, my cart was parked far enough away that it didn’t get wet. I didn’t either thanks to my lightning speed (LOL) actions to get out of the way. The rest of the morning session went pretty good... and fast.

The afternoon session was wrought with its own “excitement”. As I was on my way to the lab to pick up my CF card, I heard on the radio: Beeeeep, Beeeeeep, Beeeepppp... “We interrupt this program…” (OK, they didn’t say that last part, but it sounded good!) The national weather service had spotted a storm headed our way and had a watch until 1:15pm. The storm was capable of producing 60mph winds. The golfers were set to tee off at the same time. It was 85F and sunny out! By the time I got to the country club, the skies were clouding up and during dark. It didn’t take long and the winds picked up and things were being blown everywhere. The caddies were rushing to set golf clubs against the building and tables were being dismantled. Imagine 100+ men congregated at the 19th hole while the storm subsided! It was soooo hot in there and NOISY! Tee off was postponed for about an hour. Again, I zipped around the course photographing the afternoon four-somes. I witnessed one large tree down, and lots of branches all over the course. I also witnessed three men relieving themselves against the nearest tree... must’ve been the free-flowing beer! I had one very appreciative older “gentlemen” thank me for taking his photo with the other guys who volunteered to run the brat stand. I thought “Awww... Ain’t that sweet?” Another older guy (most of the men who golf this tournament are “older”), told me how charming I was... LOL, hardly anyone uses that term these days. I’ve never thought of myself as charming, but hey... if he wants to think that, I’ll let him!

For the past 2 years, this group had decided they don’t want the “traditional” golf poses. So each year, they’ve come up with their own creative posing. I just make sure their faces show. Last year, they laid on their stomachs with their hands propping their heads up, LOL.

Jul 28, 2008

Marvelous Monday Update 7/28/08

Note of Gratitude
I know I don't say it nearly enough, but I'd like to thank all the people who stop by and read my blog, and to those who take time to leave me comments. It's beyond words can say how much some of your comments mean to me. In my moments of triumph or trial, the support I've received is greatly appreciated. :)

I cannot believe how fast my planters are growing!

2 weeks ago

Planter #1 Now

Planter #2 Now

Other planters I created this year:

A "Little" DIY
I found this soap dish at the local thrift store. It's metal and I thought it was worth the 99c price tag! The finish was black, but I decided to paint it to match my bathroom mirror.

Mirror Detail

I forgot to take "before" pics, but here's what my soap dish looks like now:

Earlier this year, my Dad and uncle finished remodeling my parent's kitchen. Two weekends ago, my Dad brought over some of the upper cabinets so I could use them for storage in the basement. A problem came into play when I realized three of the cabinets were missing two shelves and the fourth one didn't have any! Dad thinks they got thrown away with the boxes from the new cabinets. (Otherwise he doesn't know, LOL) So, this past weekend I went over and he cut me shelves out of scrap wood he had... even sanded the surfaces down. :) Now I can finish organizing *that* corner of the basement.

We've had some really beautiful weather this week. Relatively low humidity and temps have been in the mid-70's to 80's. It was so nice that one day I grabbed something to eat, a magazine, stitching, and headed for the local park for my lunch hour. It was a great break from the work day, however it made me *not* want to go back to work! The next day, I sat outside the library and stitched while watching the demolition of an empty Ford dealership that had been in town since the 1950's or before.

'Blading Mania
I've really been itching to go rollerblading. There's a small park nearby that has a walking/bike path. I found it last year when my usual spot had been under construction (and the newly constructed roads nixed rollerblading). I must've been crazy to do 12 laps on my first time out! I was soooo tired afterwards. Surprisingly, I wasn't too sore the next day. My goal at first was only to do 4 laps, then I thought "Well, why not 6?" and it kept going up from there. I should've stopped around lap 10 because after that, my clumsy gene started kicking in and I almost lost my balance a few times. To top it off, group of 3 "young adults" with baby & stroller hogged width of path and almost made me crash. When I decided to stop and was taking off my gear, they walked by and didn't even apologize either. How rude!

Stitchy Stuff
I managed to get a little bit of stitching in this week. I finished the stitching part of my ornament for an exchange. I still need to get a button for it and then make it into an ornament. I hope my exchange partner likes it. :)

I've also got almost all my stuff for the Rainbow Exchange I'm in. Picking stitchy stuff in colors of the rainbow has been harder than I thought! I hope my partner likes what I picked out.

If you need some S.E.X. (Stash Enhancement eXperience), feel free to wander over to my stash-for-sale blog.... I've added a few more things.

Jul 26, 2008

Little Shop of Horrors

My college was putting on their summer theatre production... Little Shop of Horrors.

Seymour is a nerdy orphan working at Mushnik's, a run-down flower shop in urban Skid Row. He harbors a crush on fellow co-worker Audrey, and is berated by Mr. Mushnik daily. In an effort to bring customers into the business, Seymour suggests displaying a new mysterious unidentified plant which he calls Audrey II. The plant seems to have a craving for blood. As Seymour's infatuation for Audrey grows, as does the plant's appetite and it begins to sing for his supper... FEED ME! Soon enough, Seymour feeds Audrey's sadistic dentist boyfriend to the plant and later, Mushnik for concluding what happened to Audrey's ex. The ending of this production shows Seymour walking in on Audrey being eaten by the plant. In desperation, Seymour jumps down the plant's throat with the intention of hacking it to death from the inside out... an effort to save the world from this blood thirsty plant.

I have to say this comic musical went WAY BEYOND my expectations! The sets were made by the art dept and the student performances were absolutely phenomenal. A complete orchestral (in the pit) rounded out this fantastic play. I *really* enjoyed it.

Jul 25, 2008

For Cripes Sake!

This must be my week for complaining, LOL!

Someone posted on the Freecycle group that they needed moving boxes. I break all my boxes down flat and have been storing them against the wall in the basement. They are nice boxes! I offered my boxes to this person.

Her: Can I pick them up at 4:30 today?

Me: No, I don't get off work until 5pm. 5:30p would be fine, though. Let me know, and I'll give you directions.

Her: Any chance of my picking them up sometime tomorrow?

Me: 8:30am will work, or between 9:30-10:30am. I can't guarantee when I'll be home after that, as I have a busy day tomorrow. Sunday evening will work, too... after 5pm, if you can give me a specific time. Or, next week after 5:30pm. Let me know.

*** Now, I thought I offered up some very flexible and reasonable time schedules. ***

Her: Would it be possible for you to put them out on your curb, and I can just swing by tomorrow morning to pick them up? That way it's easier for the both of us.

*** I thought to myself: They're free! If she wants them, SHE can walk up and down my basement steps and haul them to her vehicle. I am NOT going to drag them to the curb. ***

Me: No. There are a lot of them and they are in my basement.

Geesh, I'm all for helping people out but where's the effort on her part??

Jul 23, 2008

Seriously... Do I Seem...

DESPERATE?!! What is it about some men that they just can't take "no" for an answer?

Ex-BF #1
This is all via text message...

S: I will be in town on the 29th. Would u join me 4 chinese?

Me: (looking at the phone in disbelief)

Me: Y do u want 2 go out 2 dinner w me?

S: Cuz I'm hungry & i like your company.

Me: (all sorts of mean responses running through my head)

Me: U didn't like my company 9mo ago. Like u said... I deserve better

S: (totally ignoring the "I deserve better" comment) I was very angry

S: If u r uncomfortable i understand & i can go alone...

Me: Not uncomfortable or angry. in disbelief that u would think i'd consider it. i'm not that desperate

S: Never said u were desperate

Me: (outside watering my plants and not responding)

S: So its a pride thing. gotcha. i have pride also yet im still asking u out. think about it.

Me: Not a pride thing... Just not willing 2 deal w next time u get "very angry"

S: Look. I'm gonna eat a mess of shrimp on the 29th. i just thought youd like 2 join me for the binge.

Me: Thx 4 askin & u enjoy your shrimp (I meant that to be sarcastic, guess it didn't work)

S: Just food. Food. Food! Me want shrimpies. I will ask again. Later.

LOL, am I the only one who thinks that whole conversation was unbelievable?! Why is it that I have to resort to being down right rude and insulting in order for men to get the hint? Does he think 9 months erased my memory? Did 9 months erase his?

Ex-BF #2
Actually B should be #1 because he came first, but I'm discussing him second so #2 he'll be. B & I dated over 4 years ago, only for about a year. Come to find out he lied about some very key issues in his life, which caused the collapse of a 3 year friendship (prior to dating) and the one year BF/GF relationship. Because it got so bad toward the end, for my own sanity I had to cut all communication with him. Yet, to this day... He STILL calls and leaves voicemail messages every couple of months. Why after 4 years of NOT talking to him, would he think I'd pick up the phone and talk? I can still tell how agitated he is when he calls and says "I was hoping you'd pick up the phone. I just want to talk." Other times, his voice sounds like the person I fell for. But after 4 years, wouldn't you think he'd get the hint??

And Then...
There's J, who last winter sprinkled my driveway with salt, has taken me out to dinner and has been polite, found me the snowblower, fixed said snowblower, changed the plugs in my car and fixed my lawnmower numerous times. He also drives by my house on his way to/from work (which doesn't need to happen), told my mother at my brother's wedding that we were "dating" (which gives the connotation we're BF/GF). I have to watch what I say because it seems he tells my brother things I'd rather him not know.

Last night, in the middle of conversation he says: "So are you still on the not wanting to get involved kick?" Totally caught me off guard and I said "Yes and No" (lol). After I said that, he changed the subject right away. I have my reasons as to why I don't want to get involved with anyone right now. I would love to be in a good relationship, but tired of doing all the "work" only to feel disrespected and taken advantage of. If that makes sense.

Today via text message... What's with these guys and all the text messaging about serious stuff?... J texts me about not answering that question. So I told him the above. I again was caught off guard when he texted me about how I'd have to trust someone sooner or later. (Like I don't know that?)

The way I see it is this: At least I'm aware of my feelings and I'm being upfront about dating and getting seriously involved. I'm not hiding the fact that I don't want a serious relationship. It's not that I don't like him... So far, he seems like a very nice guy, follows through when he says he'll do something (reliability is good!), polite and thoughtful. Going out once in a while is one thing, getting serious is a whole other ballgame.

'Nuf said! I'll get off my soapbox now before I fall off and hurt myself. LOL

Jul 22, 2008

SBQ - The Balancing Act

How do you balance your stitching time with your other obligations such as work, household chores, etc.?

I really have no rhyme nor reason as to how I do things. I detest household chores so I'll do some and then do something else, such as stitch or home improvement/DIY projects. I stitch when the mood strikes, regardless of whether the house chores are done. As for work, I'm not allowed to stitch during work hours... LOL, one should be so lucky.

Jul 21, 2008


I was the lucky recipient of the Brilliante Weblog, given to me by Lori and Carolyn. Woo Hoo... How great is that?!! Not only that she had some great things to say about moi! (Thank you, Lori)

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

Here are some bloggers I think are "brilliante":

Carol - i, Stitchaholic
Barb - My Stitching Treasures
Mercy - Pretty in Pink
Velda - Stitching Angels Solitude
Deidre - The Stitching Teacher
Chiloe - Chiloe's Corner
Terry - Shut Up & Stitch
Nancy - Nancy's Needle Notes

OK, OK... So, that's 8! I couldn't help it. ;-)

Update: I have since been nominated by Beth, Debbie Jo, Beth, and Dawn. Thanks ladies!

Ben Franklin times Two

You know, I really love when I figure out problem children and can articulate it to the auto repair shop. As I thought, the window master switch was bad on my car. It was fixed within 20 minutes at a cost of... *drum roll, please* $178. Not quite two Ben Franklins. I was lucky enough to receive some change back. And as Chiloe said: My wallet is now afraid to come out of hiding in my purse. LOL

Guess what happens when you reach inside the car and unlock the door? Can ya say “Alarm”?!! My car was locked but the window was down far enough I could unlock it rather than walk in the house to get my keys to do the job. Imagine my surprise when I heard “BEEP!!! BEEP!!! BEEP!!! BEEP!!! (That’s what I get for being “lazy”, eh?) At least now I know that the alarm system on my car works.

Simple Home Remedies

I thought I'd start this post off with a bit of humor... You'll see why at the end.


1. Avoid cutting yourself when slicing vegetables by getting someone else to hold them while you chop.

2. Avoid arguments with the Mrs. about lifting the toilet seat by using the shower.

3. For high blood pressure sufferers: simply cut yourself and bleed for a few minutes, thus reducing the pressure in your veins. Remember to use a timer.

4. A mouse trap, placed on top of your alarm clock, will prevent you from rolling over and going back to sleep after you hit the snooze button.

5. If you have a bad cough, take a large dose of laxatives, then you will be afraid to cough.

6. You only need two tools in life: WD-40 and Duct Tape. If it doesn't move and should, use the WD-40. If it shouldn't move and does, use the duct tape.

Now the real reason for this post...

Duct tape DOES come in handy! Yesterday, it was hotter than blue blazes so when I went shopping I put my windows down. I noticed when I pushed the switch for the power window on the driver's side, it acted a little funny. I didn't think much of it since the window went down. When I went to put the window back up, the switch wouldn't work. Being it was Sunday, the shop wasn't open... of course.

So this morning, I call.

Mechanic Dude: "Yes, we can look at it this afternoon. How long will it be before you bring the car in?"

Me: "However long it takes me to tape up the window."

Wouldn't you know that when I woke up this morning, it was raining... and raining... and raining. Searching the house, I came up with clear plastic big enough to cover my driver's side window.

With dry cleaning bag and duct tape in hand I go out to the garage and set to work. I kept thinking to myself... "Thank goodness this happened on a Sunday because it would so NOT make my day to find this out early on a Monday morning!"

I get it taped to the car... Coincidentally, did ya know once duct tape sticks to plastic.. it's stuck??! (LOL) I head for the shop. A block away from my house, the dry cleaning bag starts to fill with air! Well, crap. I pull over and after some investigation found that I hadn't pressed one of the pieces of tape down hard enough. Problem solved!

I'll find out later today, how much damage this will do to my purse strings. Always *something* isn't there?

I always knew there was a reason I had duct tape (and WD-40). Kinda like being a boyscout... always prepared!

Marvelous Monday Update 7/21/08

Not a whole lot to report this week. The trip to the ER and overnight stay at the hospital threw my whole week out of whack. I haven't stitched at all, nor have I gotten anything done around the house.

I'm thrilled to see the recent torrential rain falls didn't wash away the seeds in my garden, specifically the baby romaine lettuce I planted. They're actually coming up! The climbing peas are reaching their way upward, so I put up a string trellis. I'm hoping it will be strong enough.

The cherry tomato plant has a ton of little tiny baby tomatoes. Woo Hoo! The regular tomato plants have several green tomatoes, too.

Lastly, my cucumber plants are starting to spread out and actually look like cucumber plants.

Homestead News
For months, I've been looking for just the right (size) over-the-toilet shelf. My bathroom is really small and most OTT shelves are pretty deep and too wide.

This one was labelled as "compact" and it matches the bathroom vanity pretty well. It was a little tricky to put together at certain points, but I got it. (Woo Hoo!) It looks black, but it's really the rubbed oil bronze finish.

Jul 18, 2008

Things That Make You Go "Hmmmm"

Yesterday "Nuclear Medicine" called me and said that Dr. M, who is a cardiologist wanted me to come in and finish the "resting" portion of the stress test, even though there was nothing wrong with the "exercise" portion of the test... nor was there anything "remarkable" about all of the other tests they gave me while I was in the hospital for "observation".

When I then asked why... I was told that Dr. M wanted a complete test. Now the reason for my "Hmmm"?

1. The "just because" reasoning doesn't sit well with me. I'm not willing to pay for a test that's not needed "just because".

2. Dr M. is not the cardiologist who read my test results while I was in the hospital.

3. Nor was he the cardiologist who came to talk to me after looking at the results. I have never even met Dr. M.!

I called my primary physician's office and asked them about it. The nurse said she doesn't understand why they'd want a test "just because" either. I'm having the records of my observational stay forwarded to my primary doctor, and see what she says.

I called Nuclear Medicine back and told them what I wanted to do, and the nurse says: "Oh so do you want Dr M to transcribe the test results?" What??? She then tells me he just looked at the results on the computer screen, he didn't transcribe them because he wanted to wait until I did the "resting" part. Uhh, no. Transcribe and get them to my doctor.

Kreativ Blogger... Moi?

I received this award from Stefanie (all across the Big pond) CJ, and Trecie which I pass on with the following rules:

1. The winner may put the logo on her blog.
2. Put a link to the person you got the award from.
3. Nominate 5 blogs
4. Put links to the blogs.
5. Leave a message for your nominees.

I pass the award to:
Lisa S - Me, My Needle, and I
Rene - Rene la Frog's Ramblings
Jenna - Tale of a Shooting Star
Jennifer - Sweet Pea Stitches
Shari - Shari's Sharings

I had soooo many I wanted to award! It was hard to pick *just* 5. Thank you Stefanie, for passing the award on to me. :)

Jul 16, 2008

Home Finally

Four EKG's, three enzyme tests, one cardiac ultrasound, and one stress test later... I was finally released. Bascially, they don't know what's been causing what I describe as chest "discomfort" I've been experiencing over the past week and half. They do know tests show it's not cardiac related, and as the cardiologist says "Anything else that could be causing it is relatively benign." I'm supposed to follow up with my primary physician in about a week.

I came home and took a nap, since I didn't get much sleep in the hospital. Back to work tomorrow!

Jul 15, 2008

Never A Dull Moment

I was wrong... it wasn't a 3 hour ordeal. It turns out that it's an overnight stay! That's right, they are keeping me for observation. EKG, chest xray, and cardiac enzymes all came back negative. I'm on my second heart monitor and wearing a nitro patch. I have the "green light" which means I can do anything I want except leave, LOL. They'll be doing two more enzyme tests and possible stress test in the morning. The doctor did say it looks like I have a little bit of arythmia.

My sister drove 75 minutes to visit me in the ER... while talking to me on the phone! The little liar told me the "air" I heard was the fan in her house, LOL. Then she proceeded to call my parents, who showed up. And my oldest brother came, too. My little ER room was quite full when the doctor came in to do his initial exam.

Doctor: (looking into my eyes with a shining light) "Do you have any eye problems?"

Me: (wearing glasses) "Not that I know of"

Bro: (busting a gut laughing and being a smart@ss) "She's wearing glasses, that's a eye problem!"

Well, that's all she wrote. After that, my sister started with her comments, and between the two of them cracking jokes... Everyone was busting up laughing except the doctor... who was trying to do the exam. I was doing my best trying to ignore them so that I could answer his questions without laughing! I finally told them if they couldn't "behave" they could leave. LOL

So what do they do? They go out in the hall and the entire time I could hear them cracking and laughing. LOL They both walk in toward the end of the exam and I could tell they were laughing so hard they had watery eyes.

Bro: "I couldn't help it!" (still laughing)

Since I have to stay overnight, I talked them into going to my house to get an overnight bag and my laptop. Ten minutes after they left, I called my sister: "We're trying to figure out how to get to your house" I live less than two blocks straight from the hospital! LOL

It was weird answering some of the questions about family health history with family who had the health problems there...

Doc: "Any family history of heart disease?"

My Dad is sitting 3 feet at the end of my bed not saying anything.

Me: "Uh yeah, sitting right there" (pointing to Dad)

Same thing for diabetes, high blood pressure.

Mostly they are keeping me for observation because of the family history factors. All my paternal relatives have some or all of the unhealthy factors.

I keep thinking... But I'm the healthy one!! *sigh*

A Trippin' I Will Go...

...to the ER.

I’ve been having chest pressure and discomfort for over a week now. It comes and goes. Sometimes it feels like someone is pressing down in the middle of my chest... well not in the middle, a little off to the right actually. Other times it feels like a pulsating sensation. Squeeze, release, squeeze, release. Same general area.

On my lunch hour today, I called my doctor and of course she wants me to go to the Emergency Room. I don’t relish sitting in the ER for a minimum of 3 hours, which is why I held off calling the doctor. I *knew* that’s what she’d tell me. Of course, they wanted someone to drive me. Ha... There’s just me, I’ll be driving myself, thank you. To answer the nurse’s question: “Is that why you didn’t call me a week ago?” Yes, ma’am. Of course, I didn’t tell her that. I just told her it really wasn’t that painful… just uncomfortable. I could tell she was miffed at me. She even put me on hold to talk to the doctor.

So after work, I’ll be heading there. I figured I’ve waiting over a week… a few more hours isn’t going to hurt. I’m hoping it’s just stress, but with my family’s history of heart problems...

Jul 14, 2008

It's a RAK!!

I knew it was definitely a "Marvelous Monday" when I went to the PO and spied this in my mailbox:

It's a RAK!! Glowe had visited my blog and saw I had this on my wish list. She was kind enough to send it to me with a thoughtful little note. It REALLY made my day! Thank you, Glowe, for thinking of me. :)

Marvelous Monday Update 7/14/08

I've finally managed to get the rest of my little vegetable garden planted. Yes, I know it's kinda late. Oh well. I've got 3 tomato plants, 3 sets of climbing pole beans, 3 rows of baby romaine lettuce, 3 hills of bush cucumbers, and a row of climbing snap peas. The green beans are about 8" high already and *something* is eating up the leaves! I've started to sprinkle with garlic powder and will do cayenne pepper, too. That seemed to do the trick last year.

Will my 6 bags-at-time mulching project EVER be done? Let's hope so! I put down some more mulch this past weekend. I'm about 2/3 done.

Here's one of two planters I created this year. It's growing in nicely!

Here's a closeup of the Goldfinger Potentilla bushes that line my garage in the backyard:

I wish I could visit this garden: Beijing Olympic Garden. Absolutely stunning!

The Dating Game
Some of my faithful readers remember S from last year. We had some good times and I thought things were going OK until he whigged out over the fact that I dared to correct his kid misbehaving in MY home when Dad didn't. Details HERE.

Right before the July 4th holiday (almost a year later), he came to pick up the stuff he left at my house. Yes, I know... I'm a nice person for keeping it in my garage all that time. LOTS of people gave me suggestions as to how to dispose of it... Burn it, Sell it, Freecycle it, Give it away, etc. etc. I put it all out in my garage last Fall so it wasn't in my way. He showed up and acted like we were friends/buddies... like NOTHING happened! Are men *really* THAT ignorant? He let it be known that he wasn't dating anyone, too. Like I'd care about that? Here's the real kicker: He sent me a text message last Wed asking me if I wanted to go to a Thai restaurant with him! One of my friends said: Did you tell him HELL NO!? I wanted to text back and say: "Obviously therapy isn't working... What makes you think I'd want to go with you after the way you acted??" The man couldn't even bring himself to talk to me on the telephone after the "incident"! Geesh.

I texted him back, "Are you asking me out on a date?" He said yes, and when I didn't answer he sent me another text: "Are you still thinking?"

Yeah, I'm thinking all right...

Each time I receive something from a Freecycler, I thank my lucky stars. Being a new homeowner, there are lots of yard tools that I've needed to get and it can get expensive! I received this weedeater from a lady on Freecycle:

It's only a 7" cut, and the battery only holds a charge for about 20 minutes, but it'll do until I can afford to buy a bigger one.

Stitchy Stuff
I fell off the wagon and broke my self-imposed stash diet. I couldn't resist. These are cross stitch miniatures kits:

Aren't they the cutest things?

I've always loved books and reading. When I moved last year, my Dad was in disbelief at how many of my boxes contained books. LOL With that said, I rarely have time to read books of my own choosing... usually I am reading textbooks for school. Since I've had the summer off, I've actually read two books! What were they? Totally and utterly useless reading material, yet entertaining. ;-) Harlequin Intrigue novels! It's been decades since I've read Harlequin. These "intrigue" novels are advertised as a "breathtaking romantic suspense" series.

Phantom Lover by Rebecca York
Bree Brennan goes undercover as a schoolteacher to protect Troy London at the request of his sister. From the moment she arrives at the beautiful old mansion by the sea, Bree's encounters with dangerous tenants, ghosts and hauntings crank up the suspense. But Troy is not to be found—at least not in physical form.

I really don't think this had much suspense in it. The ending wasn't what I expected and the crux of this story was (to me) rather strange.

Under Lock and Key by Slvie Kurtz
Isolated in the family castle because of a childhood disfigurement, Melissa Carnes is in danger and doesn't know it. Her uncle calls in a favor to get hard-hitting investigative journalist Tyler Blackwell to protect his niece and find out who is threatening her.

This story kept my interest from beginning to end. It had all the elements of a romantic suspense: a dark castle, an incredible hero, a heroine whose courage is tested, tension and a twisted ending.

Can you say "Yummy!"?

Grilled Bourbon-Glazed Salmon,
Grilled Candied-Basil Carrots,
Grilled Dill Potatoes,
Iced Suntea

Jul 13, 2008

PIF Winners Announced!

I went through a *very* scientific process of determining the three winners of my PIF. I put all the names in a cup and chose three. LOL Here are the winners:

Rene, Beth, and Lynn in TX, please email me your addresses so that when I get the PIF's ready, I can mail them to you. Remember, you have to Pass It Foward :)

Jul 12, 2008

Victorian Pansies Needlebook

I finished the companion piece to the scissor fob I made last year:

Designer: Textile Heritage (Scotland)
Fabric: 18ct ecru aida
Fibers: DMC floss
Embellished with handmade cording

Jingles Revisited

I stitched up Jingles back in April, but couldn't decide how to finish it into an ornament. Here's what I came up with today:

Designer: The Stitchworks Ltd
Time: 6 Hours
Fabric: 22ct mauve aida
Fibers: DMC and Rainbow
Gallery Wisper flosses
Embellishments: gold cording,
bells, and pearlized pins

Nancy was kind enough to send me the two little gold bells. Thank you, Nancy!

Mon Beau Sapin

Mon Beau Sapin
Designer: Aurelle
Time: 4 Hours
Fabric: 18ct fiddler aida
Fibers: Six Strand Sweets & DMC
Embellishments: Button, Bead,
handmade cording & tassle

Jul 7, 2008

Marvelous Monday Update 7/7/08


I've been looking at tables for my backyard for when I get to sit out there and stitch. An older couple were giving away two small metal patio tables. They needed a little work...

So, I set to work. After primering and painting, I have a great looking set of new-to-me tables!

Matching Swing

Remember the last place I lived at? The family that lived there when I first moved in left this swing behind.

The landlords were just going to throw it away, so I scarfed it up for my own. Unfortunately, it's always needed a new paint job.

Again, I set to work. I scraped. I wire brushed. I washed. I primered both the wood and metal. I painted. After 3 days of painting, it was finally finished! Not perfect, but much better than it was. I still need to touch up some of the white where I smeared red onto it.

M-m-m, Good!
There's nothing like grilled food. Great summer weather, sizzling sounds, scrumptious smells!

Grilled Corn-on-the-Cob, Grilled Spicy Vegetables
(potatoes, onions, zuchini, mushrooms),
Grilled Honey Dijon Chicken, & Iced Suntea

Stitchy Stuff
One would think with all the stitching related posts I'd made over the weekend, I'd be done... But no! I managed to work a couple hours on Quakers Rule. Here's what it looks like after 7.25 hours:

Jul 6, 2008

Health & Happiness Ornament

I stitched this last month as part of an ornament SAL I'm doing in two of the groups I participate in. Today, I made it into a pillow ornament with handmade cording.

A Christmas Wish For Health & Happiness
Designer: Blue Ribbon Designs
Fabric: 18ct fiddler aida
Fibers: DMC floss, Kreinik Blending Filament

The photo really doesn't do the sparkly Kreinik justice. :( More details on this piece can be seen HERE.

It's a PIF!

I signed up for a PIF on CJ's blog, so now it's my turn to offer it on my blog!

*** This is how it works ***

If you would like to receive something made by me within the next 365 days, please comment on this post to say that you are interested.

I will take the first 3 people...or if there are more than 3, then I will do a drawing. In return, you must offer to do the same :)

I will be taking sign ups until Saturday, July 12th. Thanks for signing up!

What's a PIF? It stands for Pass It Forward or Pay It Forward, meaning pass forward a bit of kindness to make the world a better place. My guess is its origins come from the movie of the same name, starring Kevin Spacey, Helen Hunt, and Haley Joel Osment. Great movie, btw!

Tea Time Floss Tag

I stitched this up over the past week and finished making it into a floss tag at 2am this morning! I created the floss tag by using parts of a freebie design called "Tea Time" by Ria Lanser. The tag was stitched on 18ct mauve aida using Six Strand Sweets Tropical Punch and DMC 208.

Front Side

Back Side

Not bad for my first time, eh? I'd like to thank Shari for answering my questions on how to make one. Thanks, Shari!

Jul 1, 2008

Mime Revisited

The bullion knot required me to use spacers in the frame. I found a frame shop that was willing to sell me spacers, and offered to "staple" the piece in the frame if I brought it in. Today, with Mime in hand, I trotted into the frame shop. :) It was supposed to be a quick 5 minute job, but turned out to be a 30+ minute escapade. The board I stitched Mime onto was *just* a little to short (OK, about 1/4") for the spacers and it kept sliding out of place. The guy at the frame shop with really nice about it and kept at it until "we" got it. I offered to pay him and he said no. He just wants me to come back again. I think I can do that!

Without further adieu... I present, "Mime" framed:

Had an interesting chat with the framer about how people bring in their needlework. He commented on my lacing and said it's rare that he sees that anymore, and how much work it takes to do it. He said they use the sticky boards. He also said that some people use pins and pin needlework to foam core.