Jan 25, 2010

Marvelous Monday Update 1/25/2010

I wasn't planning on doing an update today since I've regaled you with my "latest and greatest" last Thursday and then again on Sunday, but hey... I have yet even more entertaining crap stuff to share with you!

In today's mail, I received two more cards from the CSE Birthday Floss Club. Everyone knows how much I am "enjoying" the winter weather, right? Glenda picked out the greatest card for my birthday. It certainly brought a smile to my face when I opened it. Thank you, Glenda!

I received this cheery card and beautiful floss from Di... who only lives about 2 hours from me. I didn't put 2+2 together (and yes, I work in accounting) until she invited me to come visit. Thank you, Di. :)

I also had a totally unexpected birthday surprise... from Danielle who says "I'll Be Perfect In My Next Life". She sent me a gift certificate for 123 stitch. Thank you so much, Danielle!

... all the way from Hungary. Jade's card arrived in the mail today. Thanks, Jade. It's beautiful, and better late than never. :)

The past couple days brought us temps in the mid 30's which was good for melting the snow, but it also made the air damp. Damp air makes my house feel much colder than it actually is, and the melting snow means water in my basement. *sigh* It's been snowing off and on all day. So far, very little has stuck. Forecasters are calling for more snow tomorrow and Wed. Noooooo......

I was the lucky recipient of a virus Friday afternoon. Apparently *those* a-holes jerks who think up these virus attacks have targeted Adobe Reader and Acrobat (the program that helps us read the .pdf files). The programs have fixes, you just have to do the updates. Apparently, I didn't do my update -- actually, can't even remember the last time I got a notice to update it. So, as I was working with a .pdf I downloaded from a state agency, I was attacked! The poor IT guy had to come in on Saturday to give my 'puter a shot of penicillin. The one thing that made me not feel so bad is that I'm the 5th or 6th person in my firm it's happened to recently.

I'm naughty, I know. I've had this on my wishlist for quite a while. When my eBay alert told me there was one up for auction, I figured a little S.E.X. (Stash Enhancement eXperience) was in order. I set my auction sniper and forgot about it until I received notice I was the high bidder. Woo Hoo!

Elegant Accessories by Beardie Designs

Jan 24, 2010

It's My Birthday!!!

I woke up to a cold rainy day, but my spirits were brightened by all the wonderful gifts I received from the ILCS Birthday Club and CSE Birthday Floss Club.

First all the wonderful cards:

Even Celeste got a belated birthday card (her birthday was in Oct). It is the cutest thing!

From the CSE Birthday Floss Club:

Look at all those *beautiful* flosses!

I was really spoiled by the ladies in the ILCS Birthday Club.

From Shelley: A beautifully stitched and finished tea wall hanging that says "With enough tea, I can survive anything". I'm thinking I will hang it in my craft/spare bedroom. She sent me two boxes of my favorite jelly beans -- Jelly Bellys! Also in the package was a Cross Stitch Forever emery board, a Quarter Flat of fabric, and the Enchanting Geisha kit. Shelley even wrapped everything in pretty paper. Thank you so much, Shelley. Everything was awesome!

From Rhonda: Two asian charts from Pinn Stitch -- Chinese God of Wealth and Japanese Beauties (this one was on my wish list), and a package of size 26 petite needles (my favorite!). Thank you, Rhonda!

From Ethel: Another chart from my wishlist, Traveling Stitcher by Little House Needleworks. She also sent a beautiful piece of fabric from Silkweavers called Shimmering Romance. It's gorgeous! Thank you, Ethel.

From Debra H: Stitcher Favorite Biscornu kit by Sweetheart Tree, one of my favorite designers. Thank you so much, Debra.

I also received gift certificates from Kelly, Kim in Oz, Nancy, Debbie Jo, and Melinda. What a shopping spree I will have!! Thank you, ladies .

It was disappointing that two people in the ILCS club didn't send packages like they were supposed to. Of course, these are ones whose birthdays have already passed and they received their gifts.

Courtney sent me a RAK so I saved it for my birthday. She sent lots of wonterful goodies. Thank you, Courtney!

Jan 21, 2010

Terrific Thursday Update 1/21/10

As you may have noticed, I missed my usual Monday update. Life has been a whirlwind since school has started, and busy season has commenced at work. Also add in my "gear-up" for the annual Get Fit Challenge, and training for tax season at work. *whew* When can I take a breather?

So anywho... Here I am on Thursday!

I'm pleading temporary insanity when the college counselor talked me into taking two accelerated classes (which is considered full time, btw) while I work full time. This route will have to be re-assessed at the end of the semester.

This is what has been consuming (and I'm not exaggerating) my time outside of work. Intermediate Accounting II and Business Ethics.

IA II is an online class which requires at least 1½ evenings of textbook reading and another 2 evenings of homework. We had our first test this week. It took me two evenings to answer the questions. I was pretty confident when I submitted my answers. I got an 85%! It just irks me when I go back to review the questions I missed only to find out I made "stupid" errors/omissions in which I knew better. Oh well... I'm happy with the 85

For BE, we have to write a paper a week on an current events article. At the end of the semester a compilation of the articles is turned as a portfolio. In class, we have this group project where we have to decide on a controversial issue, then write a little "skit". At the end of the semester, we have to give an oral presentation on one of the case studies in our textbook, then write a paper on it to be turned in. Oh, and there's also a 4-page paper which will be assigned next week. .

I can still hear the college counselor saying, "It's mostly class discussion. It will be a good one to take with another class. Just try it." Ummm..... Yeah. I am already two weeks behind on writing the papers for the articles, and a week behind on the reading. Which, btw, that blue textbook is the WORST book I have ever read. I consider myself pretty intelligent, but when I have to exclude what I call unnecessary "chatter" from sentences just so I can understand what the hell heck they're getting at, it's pretty frustrating. I'm also finding myself re-reading a lot of sentences/paragraphs.

Oh, and the instructor... He has got to be the most boring monotone instructor I've ever had. His lectures? He uses a powerpoint presentation (great!) but goes through them so fast and really doesn't elaborate on what he's talking about. Our first night of class (last week), several students asked him to slow down. It worked for 2-3 slides and then he was back at it again. There will be 2 tests in the class. I have NO idea what they're going to be like. *sigh*

I just heard on the radio that my county is the second top producer of dairy in the state of Illinois. Who'da thunk it?

The weather really hasn't been too bad (considering it's winter!), until yesterday afternoon. It started raining. Then it froze.

I couldn't even drive my car up my driveway because of the ice. Halfway up the incline, my car started spinning and sliding sideways. So, I stopped and it started sliding backwards down the driveway! Panic set in as I scanned the street for cars (I live on a busy street). It stopped sliding just as I got the end of the driveway. Hey, if ya didn't know... Brakes don't work on ice!!

I parked my car out on the street until after I put some salt down. Yes, I fell on the driveway trying to WALK up it to get to the house/garage. Annoyingly, my neighbors were being nosey neighborhood watchful and stared at my progress. It rained/froze a bit overnight and I ended up putting more salt down in the early morning hours today in order for me to get to work.

Once again, my office is participating in the Get Fit Challenge offered by the local hospital and fitness centers. Once again, I am participating. It officially doesn't start until January 31st, but I thought I'd get a jump start on a routine.

Week One (last week)
Mon: 30 min ab workout, 50 min cardio/strength
Tue: 30 min ab workout, 25 min cardio/strength
Thu: 15 min ab workout
Sat: 15 min ab workout, 15 min cardio

Week Two (this week)
Mon: 30 min stregth/cardio

As you can see, I'm failing miserably this week. In my defense, I've worked a lot of overtime so far this week. When I get home, I try to study and then go to bed. Thursday night, my class goes from 5:30-9pm (or later). Excuses, excuses! (Hey, 30 minutes is better than none, right?!)

I did take a couple hours for myself over the past few weeks to visit the two thrift stores in my town. The second one had ALL their ladies sweaters and long sleeve tops for ONE DOLLAR each. I'm not one to browse the clothing racks very often, but I couldn't pass the opporunity up. Especially since I was in dire need of sweaters and casual winter tops. I looked through every-single-rack there was. I came home with a new winter wardrobe of sweaters and shirts for less than $20! Some of the sweaters still had the tags on them! The best part? People say, "Oh that's cute. Is it new?" LOL "Why yes it is!"

You can't help but smile when a package like this shows up in your mailbox:

Last week, I was the lucky recipient of a RAK (random act of kindness) from the "Cowgirl from Hanna", Christine. You're probably saying saying, "Well, what is it?!"

Q-Snap Huggies

Christine actually makes these. She told me a while back how to make them, and I intended to make some for myself. Christine sent me not one, but 2 huggies... for my 8" and 11" q-snaps. Thank you again, Christine!

Jan 11, 2010

Marvelous Monday Update 1/11/10

If it ain't one thing, it's another.... LOL

Lucky for me, I have a desktop computer and a laptop computer. Unlucky for me, the laptop power cord had been acting up (or at least that's what I thought was wrong) and the battery wasn't getting charged. Even more unlucky is the desktop computer sits in my 3-season room that I keep closed off during the winter months. It's about 32F out there right now. Shortly after Christmas, I ordered a new power cord (hoping it was the problem child). It arrived in the mail last week. Score!! The laptop is back in business, and I don't have freeze my patooties off trying to use the desktop. It's too bad they just don't sell the top portion of the photo because that's the part that died. Oh well.

Why do things always seem to break at the most inopportune times??? During the freezing, frigid temps my garage door opener decided not to cooperate. It opened halfway... for which I am thankful, because the side door has a lock on it and I don't have a key! So, I step inside the garage and push the button, the door goes up about 1 1/2 feet and decides to die completely. No power. Fuse box in the garage. Check. Circuit Box in the house. Check. Reset button on opener. None. Fast forward a week or so. I climb up on a ladder for the 2nd time to see if the wiring is loose. Out of the corner of my eye, I spy the outlet attached to the rafters where the opener is plugged in. It appears that the vibrations from the garage door opener, made the plug come loose. Not enough to be obvious, but enough where the opener wasn't getting electricity. *Hmph* For a week and half I'd been getting in and out of the car to manually open the garage door because.... the darn thing wasn't plugged in!

Absolutely no stitching done last week. I guess I was mentally gearing myself up for school to start, so I focused on getting things in order for that. I did get a stitchy windfall, though. One of the ladies on the freecycle group listed a bunch of items she was wanting to get rid of. One was a "bunch of cross stitch thread". I emailed her, and she said it was mine. :) She also happened to be coming into town that day, so she delivered it. How can you beat that?!

Most of it was DMC, but there was a couple JP Coates and maybe a dozen Anchor skeins.

My DMC Windfall

Jan 4, 2010

Marvelous Monday Update 1/4/10

First, I'd like to say Happy New Year! Hard to believe we're a decade into the millenium, isn't it? My wish is for everyone to have a prosperous 2010!

And now, on to my latest news...

Temps have been downright frigid this past weekend. Subzero temps and single digits. Today, I woke up to 5F! Later in the week, temps are supposed to rise to about 30. It'll seem like spring. I heard Indiana got a lot of snow over the weekend. I'm glad it was there and not here.

For the past year, the blower fan on my car has intermittently been acting up. It was one of those things where it would make the screeching sound every now and then. I think Nancy heard it once when she came to visit. I didn't want to take it in to the shop and then it not "act up", if you know what I mean. Two weeks ago, it finally started acting up *all* the time to the point I didn't even want to use the heater. Thank goodness for heated seats, lol. As the temps got colder, I finally made an appointment to get it looked at. A new blower motor and $245 later, the 'ole car is back to normal.

After much contemplation and struggle, I've decided to take out student loans and go back to school. I'm considering myself lucky that I qualify for subsidized loans, which means the government will pay for the interest on said loans until I graduate. I've signed up for two classes this semester and the textbooks I ordered have arrived. Classes start next week. Wish me luck.

I spent a good part of the holiday weekend working on TMQ. I've noticed that if I just sit down and "just do it", it really does go pretty fast. Here's what I accomplished:

Other WIP pics can be seen HERE.

I wanted to start ABC Lessons, but I still haven't decided what fabric to use. I may just stitch a little bit on two of the fabrics and see what they'll look like.

Julie of I'll Cross That Leg is celebrating her 50th follower. Surf on over to check out what it is.

Karen of Sunshine Stitches is hosting her first ever giveaway. Go on over to see what it is, and while you're there check out her stitching.

As you probably have noticed, I've changed my blog layout. I'm still fiddling with it as it's not quite to my liking. Three columns is pretty neat, but I'm thinking it's making my blog a bit too "busy" Plus, everything seems crammed together. What do you think?