Tuesday, August 31, 2004

Not much to write about lately. Working way too much. This weekend the inlaws, came for a visit. My great niece Harleigh saw the granny squares I have been working on and said, "Oh are you making this for me? These are my favorite colors!" Of course I said yes. I had 44 blocks already finished so we measured her and my blocks and decided that 10 rows of 5 blocks would be just the right size for her. So I crocheted 6 more blocks on Saturday at the hotel and I tried hard to get it all together Saturday night but sewing all those grannys together takes a while. I have two more rows to add and then I can do the SC border around the afghan. I hope to have it ready to FedEx to her tomorrow morning.

Here's my progress so far:

Friday, August 27, 2004

Blogging's been sporadic at best lately. I've been working so much, not much time for life.

The inlaws are here this weekend. My house is a disaster. There is no walking space in the living room as DS#3 and one of his friends dumped out the toy bucket and of course they didn't pick them up when finished and my crochet and cross stitch are all over the place. The laundry is finally off the dining table. I told them they couldn't come over until I had time to run the vacuum. We have five cats too and a dog, this place is wild. I've been working so much that when I come home all I want to do is go to bed. I work in a barbque trailer, in the heat. No a/c. Yesterday I was especially shattered when I came home. The humidity was so high I was sweating from the time I got there until I left, top it off with no a/c in my truck--hadn't had time to take it to the garage and get freon put it in it. Hope I spelled freon correctly. All that said, I love where I work. It's exhausting and hot but I like the people I work with, it's five minutes from the house and for the most part I work the hours I want to work. Right now it's bad with tourist season winding down and losing one of the highschool girls who is off to college in NYC. After Labor Day I can go back to my regular schedule.

On the stitching front, I haven't finished L'Ete yet, but I try to work on it a little every day.

Yesterday at JoAnn's I picked up Sally Melville's The Knit Stitch and a Leisure Arts Crochet Dishcloth chart. I want to learn to knit and this book seems to be a good one. I bought the Purl Stitch a while back.

Time to clean. ICK. I hate cleaning. There are so many other wonderful, enjoyable things I could be doing. But nope, must find a place for all my clutter, vacuum, mop, all before going to work. My own fault. I should be following FlyLady and that wouldn't be a problem. I'd be organized and not embarassed, but I've just been so tired lately, housework has been the last thing on my mind. Now that has come back to bite me on the butt big time.

Tuesday, August 24, 2004

Do you ever just feel so tired that you can't sleep? That was me last night. I'm going on my sixth day straight of work. Tomorrow is my day off and I just have to make it through 5 hours. Just five hours and I have a day off. I told DH last night that my parttime job is starting to feel like a real job and that's not what I wanted at all.

Last night I was so tired I wanted to cry. Yep, I'm a baby. Every muscle ached, I came home, showered and curled up in bed and took a two hour nap. Of course when I woke up I felt worse. I hate that icky feeling when you've slept too long to feel refreshed and just long enough that you get into that good deep sleep only to be jerked from it thus feeling cheated out of those extra much needed zzzzzzz's.

Yesterday morning I managed to stitch for a while on L'Ete. I honestly see the end in sight. It's one of my favorite pieces and I can't wait to get it finished, framed and on the wall.

Here is a partial pic of DS#3 I Spy-9 Patch quilt. My inexpensive(cheap) digital camera doesn't have a flash and whenever I backed up to get more of the quilt top in the pic it would beep that there wasn't enough light. So to stay in the light zone, I could only get about half of the quilt top in the pic.

Sunday, August 22, 2004

Not too much to blog about lately. Been working way too much and that will continue through Labor Day, after that I go back to my regular schedule of Tuesdays, Thursdays and Fridays. Can't wait to get my life back.

I've been working a little everyday on L'Ete and hope to have a finished project pic in the not so distant future.

Because I am so in love with where I live I thought I'd share a pic of today's sunset:

Thursday, August 19, 2004

Today is going to be busy. I have to get my cat, Crystal, to the vet's early so she can be fixed. She's been in and out of heat for the last few months and it's making us all crazy. We also have a male cat who isn't fixed and he's really old but Crystal's dance of seduction has managed to catch his attention. It's not pretty around here. All that will be taken care of today, finally. Took me forever to get an appointment.

Then I have to get DS#3 to school on time since the vet's office is 20 miles in another direction and Crystal has to be there by 8:30. Since traffic is kind of iffy, I'm going to take DS#3 to school after dropping Crystal off, then I have to rush to work, then I have to rush out of work to pick Crystal up by 4:30. Guess I'm going to spend most of the day running here and there. I really hate these kind of days. I hate rushing anywhere. I'm one of those people that never understands road rage. You'll get there when you get there, ya know?

Guilty Secret

I'm so ashamed to admit this but I love Court TV's Nancy Grace and her coverage of the Scott Petersen trial. I'm addicted to listening to those tapes. I know it's idiocy, but I flip around the channels, find the tapes being played and I have to stop and listen. I also watch Dan Abrams on MSNBC and Greta on Fox.

Needlework Update

Still can't find my crochet hook for the Granny Squares so I'm making a Walmart run this afternoon and picking up several size F and G crochet hooks. I can't seem to find any of mine around the house in these two sizes. I know that at one time I had five of each because I tend to buy a new crochet hook to go with each project because I forget what I have at home. Since all of these are missing it means I must have put them in a safe place and have forgotten where that safe place is. I do this way too often. Thank Heaven crochet hooks are inexpensive. I do have my wooden crochet hooks but since I started the Granny Squares with a Boye hook I think I ought to keep using the same brand. My wooden crochet hook tends to make me crochet much tighter.

I've been working off and on L'Ete and hope to have her finished soon, since I just typed those words it means I'll probably now set L'Ete aside for the next 6 months. No, I'm going to do that.

Yesterday I was browsing my friend Siobhan's webshot album of her needlework and was so inspired that I am on a mission to finish L'Ete and pull out all my other Birds of a Feather designs that are kitted and ready to go and start working on those. Until I started looking at Siobhan's finished pics, I had forgotten how beautiful so many of these projects are. They are just sitting in the "ready to be stitched" bucket, ignored on a daily basis. It's must be awful for them.

I have so many projects started that I think I'm going to try to be a one at a time girl for a while and see what I can get finished. I tend to bounce around from project to project when boredom sets in but I'm going to see how disciplined I can be the next couple of weeks. I see the end in sight where L'Ete is concerned and if I could just get focused I might be able to finish several more projects thisclose to being finished.

Monday, August 16, 2004

Life Is Good

At least it was this morning. After spending some of the morning looking for my missing crochet hook, working on L'Ete for a little while, I got the kids off to school and headed for the beach.

On the way to the beach I stopped by Publix picked up 1/2 a turkey sub and some Calypso Crunch cookies. When I finally arrived at the beach there were only a few people there, almost my own private beach. I floated on my raft for a while drinking in the beauty of my surroundings. I so love where I live. Then I took a break, munched on my sandwich and cookies, and read my book, The Time Traveler's Wife. I'm only 50 pages into it but it's already got me hooked.

Also decided my next BAP cross stitch project will be Crossed Wing Collection's Great Blue Heron. I really want to get some of my great nature inspired projects finished and on the walls. Dimples Designs Wee Beasties are at the top of the list and my DD Garner Dragonfly is 3/4s finished.

Recently I haven't spent a lot of time at the beach, it's just been too hot. I never wanted to become one of those people fortunate enough to live here yet who loses their appreciation for the beauty that surrounds them. Today, I reveled in it. The water couldn't have been clearer or more beautiful. The sand was as white as sugar. Pelicans and seagulls soared above me, and fish nipped at my toes, that part was annoying because I kept expecting to look down one time and see a shark not a small hard tail. YIKES! But today no sharks, no dolphins either, but plenty of large schools of fish and birds and a minimal amount of people which is always a good thing.

We heard from a friend of ours living on a boat in Key West. He rode out Hurricane Charley on his boat. I can't believe he stayed, but fortunately the storm only grazed the Keys. He's only had the boat three weeks and had just gotten his phone installed when the storm hit.

Of course now I'm dreaming of living on a boat in the Keys.

Sunday, August 15, 2004

We were very lucky, neither one of the hurricanes came anywhere near us. We didn't get as much as a drop of rain or a breeze from Bonnie. My heart goes out to the people in Punta Gorda, but folks need to evacuate. No one can ever predict what a hurricane will do. The weather people were so sure Charley would hit Tampa, and folks got lulled into a false sense of security that people farther south thought they were safe. Some people from Tampa even evacuated to Punta Gorda. So sad.

One more hurricane rant, those barrier islands were never meant to built on. They are barrier islands. I wish FEMA and insurance companies would quit paying for these homes to be rebuilt. The barrier islands are just that, barriers to protect the mainland. They were not meant for homes or hotels. But nope, they keep being rebuilt, and keep being knocked down all at the tax payers expense. Why more people aren't mad about that I don't know, but one more time, barrier islands were never meant to be built on!

We went over to Panama City last night to have dinner with friends and just hang out. We had a great time and you wouldn't even know that Hurricane Bonnie had been there just a couple of days before. Traffic wasn't bad which is amazing for this time of year, but I guess tourists headed out at the first sign of the hurricane and I saw quite a few vacancy signs along the strip in Panama City. Panama City is a wild place and our friends live just off the strip. How many places can one visit that has a strip club on one side of the road along with a tattoo parlor and a liquor store and across the road from it is a Christian Retreat. This vision repeats itself all along the strip. I love Panama City Beach though, and Pensacola Beach. These places are alive. They have a heart and a pulse. These new "planned, perfect" communities they are building are so "sterile". They have no sense of place, just a feeling of perfection that makes me shudder when I see my footprints in the sand. They corrupt the perfect image. Give me a dumpy cinderblock house any day. Give me homes painted purple, tourquoise, fushcia. Give me decks on top of carports. Don't get me wrong, the planned communities are pretty, but they have no heart, they aren't alive.

I had planned to work on some granny squares during the two hour car ride to Panama City yesterday but when I pulled out my bag to work on the squares my crochet hook was no where to be found. So from no on I think I'll be keeping a granny square crochet hook in my purse. At least I'll always know where that one is at all times. I hated wasting all that time in the car and no crochet hook. Two hours wasted. I could have made several granny squares, but nope, kittens got in the old project bag and Heaven only knows where that crochet hook will turn up.

Wednesday, August 11, 2004

Look what I found at the local thrift store(does anyone call them junk or salvage stores any more?):

One is from the Summer '86, the other is Winter '87.

Not bad for 50¢ each. I'm not sure if there's anything in either one I'll make but it sure is fun looking at what they thought was stylish way back in the 80s. Not as much fun as the 60s but hey every decade can't be groovy.

Two tropical storms are headed this way. I went to library, checked out a stack of books, and have several projects to work on the next few days. The kids are hoping to be out of school on Thursday. We don't get snow days so hurricane days are what my kids dream about. We've been lucky and haven't had any hurricane days in the last three years. Looks like this is our year. I have two concerns with this one, the dead tree next to my driveway, it needs to be removed. If it falls it will take out all of our power lines. The second big concern is flooding with two storms back to back. We've never been in a flood zone before and we're right on the border between the flood zone and an area that is considered safe from flooding.

Oh and the other big concern, keeping my male cat from my momma cat until I can get her fixed next Thursday. Just one more week and it won't be a problem any more, but life should be fun with a female cat in heat and and a male cat who's suddenly noticed her and tropical storms raging all around.

Today is my day off and if Tropical Storm Bonnie becomes a hurricane I won't work on Thursday and I might possibly have Friday off too which works for me. I stocked up on hurricane staples, Cup O' Noodle and fruit cocktail, and need to check on the flashlights and batteries today. I can't find our camp lantern and believe we loaned it to a neighbor last summer and never got it back. Ohter than that we're good to go.

Big day on the Redneck Riviera. President Bush was making speeches all along the NW Gulf Coast yesterday. He drove right past my place of employment and like the hick goober I am, I stood out in the middle of the highway waving along with lots of other hick goobers. Whether I agree with Bush or not isn't the issue, I've never seen a presidential motorcade so this was huge for me. Is it still a motorcade if they're in big buses and not limos?

There were protesters outside the Pensacola Civic Center. A Bush supporter got all riled up at an antiwar protester, called him out, then backed down, when his back was turned the antiwar guy ran up and kicked the Bush supporter on the butt. Both were arrested. Seems a little harsh to me. I mean he didn't even kick him very hard, and the cops were right there, so was it really necessary to cuff both men and haul them away to jail? I know, the antiwar guy got a little carried away, but to go to jail for that, is it really worth it? Couldn't they have just separated the men and moved on?

Sunday, August 08, 2004

Finally A Finish or Two

This weekend I managed to finish this sampler from Sheepish Designs. It's Time Flies. I bought it several years ago when I went on a needlework retreat in Rochester, NY. It was my first trip alone after 16 yrs of marriage. I got to finally meet some longtime email loop friends face to face and it was one of the best weekends of my life.

Here is a very poor scan of a fob I finished for a Friendship swap. I filled it with, hmmm, not doll pellets, but something a lady at JoAnn's recommended that is usually used for floral arranging. They are pearl like tiny square bead thingies. My finishing skills are still not as good as I'd like them to be but my excuse this time is that I've never sewed cording to something filled with beads. Kind of awkward to say the least. I have a pair of silverish embrodiery scissors to send with the fob. The design is a Lizzie Kate Freebie, Friendship Grows.

I spent two hours this morning trying to figure out what I'm doing wrong with the old blog. All my links are showing up at the bottom of the page. I've read my Visually HTML book a thousands times and it never mentions how to set things up with two permanent columns. I know it's got to be something so flippin' simple that I'm making it difficult, but for the time being the Links are at the bottom until I can get past this brain freeze. It might be the template I'm using, but I'll try to figure all this out another day.

Another thing I'm trying to figure out is how to add buttons to my links. I have a few saved to my Photobucket album but tried several times today to add them to the links and to also add the 63 Squares CAL button along with a few others. Another very simple thing that I'm making way too difficult.

Let's see, crochet progress, so far I have crocheted 44 squares for my Peyote Granny Square afghan. DS#1 thought the squares were coasters. DS#2 is just fascinated by the wild color choices and I can't seem to keep the kittens off the three pile of squares I have on the sewing stand.

I've also decided on the 63 Squares CAL, I need to redo Block #4, it's way too large. I need to get back into a routine for this afghan. I, for some silly reason, thought I might just get the 63 squares finished this year. What was I thinking? I rarely ever finish anything the year I start it. That's not a good thing is it?

Tomorrow I don't have to work and I plan to spend the day stitching, crocheting, maybe pulling out the old sewing maching and finally getting the borders on DS#3's quilt and a million other things. Not to mention start getting the house company ready. We have company coming in next weekend. I'm not prepared. Not one little bit. I don't want to clean and vaccuum. I want to stitch, I want to create, I want to veg out in front of the tv and watch chick flicks.

Saturday, August 07, 2004

Today has been a lazy day. A very lazy day that I have wasted. I haven't crossed one stitch or crocheted one granny square. I haven't even read a page out any of my recently acquired library books. Today has been spent catching up on blogs that I haven't been able to read over the last three weeks.

I do have big plans for next week. I'm hoping to get a digital camera and also plan to buy the new Carl Hiaasen novel Skinny Dip and also pick up Maureen Dowd's Bushworld. The new Alice Hoffman book Blackbird House sounds good too. Uh, excuse me, I have just mistaken myself for someone with a bottomless bank account.

Just received confirmation from Amazon that this is on it's way to me:

I ordered another book at the same time, way back in June, but it's release has been delayed I guess. I'm hoping this book:

will be on it's way to me in the not so distant future. I'm also eagerly awaiting Interweave Knits Special Crochet issue.

Friday, August 06, 2004

Today I had a wonderful suprise. My computer is home! Yea!!!! I can catch up on all the blogs I've missed reading. It seems like forever since I was able to read anyone's blog or see their projects or pics. Very frustrating, especially when one is in serious need of inspiration.

I'm hoping to have a digital camera by the end of next week and update this space with current pics of my WIP.

The kids have started back to school!!! Double YEA!!!!!! It was time for them to go back. They spent the last four days of their summer break yelling about one or the other making faces or touching someone. Got really, seriously annoying.

This is so cool. I don't think I'll ever take my computer for granted again.

Sunday, August 01, 2004

This was a good weekend around here, the kids head back to school on Monday and it is definitely time they start back. The boys have been fighting for two weeks straight, DH and I have started getting on each other's nerves so it's time for something to give and thankfully it's back to school time.

Of course we're now broke. Between school clothes for three boys, a new bike for DS#1, and an astronomical amount of money spent on school supplies, we'll be eating peanut butter and jelly sandwiches and mac and cheese all next week.

Now I have to plow through all the same exact paperwork I fill out every year. You'd think for the sake of the environment maybe they'd carry one or two of these forms over every year, but nope, same pink cards, same yellow forms, same everything every year. Why not just ask parents if any of their info has changed, if not then leave all the records the same and pass them on along to the next teacher.

On the needlework front I've made a few more granny squares for my granny square afghan, I bought Leisure Arts Color Charged Throws. Most of the colors are geared for girls, well ok, all the colors are girlie colors but there's an afghan in there that I thought DS#1 would like and it uses the bright lime green he's so fond of these days so I'm planning on making it for him. It's the Beach Volley afghan. One of my favorites in this book. I like all the patterns in the book and plan to change some of the colors so that I can make DS#2 and #3 afghans from this book too.

I spent the afternoon putting DMC on bobbins and getting all my threads organized for Carriage House Samplings Houses of Hawk Run Hollow. I want to get a good start on this now that the boys are going back to school. I'll have some peace during the day and actually make some progress.

Honestly I haven't wanted to work on much of anything these days. It's just been so hot, I find myself reading more than anything. I recently finished the Shop on Blossom Street and am currently reading The Corest Diaries by Katie MacAlister.

Granny squares are also a nice mindless project to work on when one doesn't want to have to think too much. I've got a good rythmn going on my squares and am really enjoying them. I forgot how much fun they are to work on.