Monday, October 29, 2007

13th Colony Bay

Here are a couple of updated shots of 13th Colony Bay. Part 1 to the left and my shadow is blocking a bit of part 2. We will not go into how I fell through the seat of the chair while trying to get a picture of the whole piece in one shot. I just really don't want to talk about it right now.

Here is part 2 and a bit of part 3 and I would have ironed this before the photo shoot except that my ironing board is loaded down with clutter and there just really wasn't anywhere to put it and I would have only created more piles of clutter. It's a never ending battle around here. Clutter is my Lex Luthor.

I'm taking a bit of a hiatus from 13th Colony Bay so that I can finish up some obligation stitching. Then my goal and I can't believe I'm saying it outloud because it means I will never touch this project again, my goal is to finish 13th Colony Bay--all three parts by December 31, 2007. I honestly and truly believe it's doable. I am in love with this design. It is a joy to stitch. I hate to set it aside but my swap partners are going to be a little PO'd at me if I don't meet my deadline.

Friday, October 26, 2007


Beatrix Potter:

I know that at times I have not provided you with the best of home environments. I have been neglectful. Leaving you laying around at the mercy of the cats or Polly the nightmare hellhound. I am so very sorry. Please forgive me for being so careless.

I have yet to find a "Dear Melissa" note from either one of you so I hope you are just playing some cruel game of hide and seek. It's really time now for you to come out, come out from where ever you are. You see I'm ready to gather up your supplies, my fingers want to put in those cherished first stitches, and now I can't find you.

Dearest Jane--I'm going to stitch you in silk. Don't you want to come out and play now? Silk. I'm giving in to the call of the silk threads just for you Jane. Come on now, just peak a little corner out from whatever pile you are hiding under. It'll feel really good. I promise. You know you want to.

Beatrix, you have been missing for quite some time now. I know you are around here somewhere. Somewhere close. I can feel you watching me, I know you're wondering if I'm ever going to move what ever it is you're hiding under and find you. Don't you think this has gone on long enough? I had no idea you could be so cruel. All those cute bunnies and geese, oh how misleading they are to your core audience. You are heartless Beatrix.
Fun and game time is over. It's time to get down to some serious stitching. Now you ladies need to suck up your pride, assure yourselves that I have learned my lesson and will treat you better in the future, and come out from your hiding places. Olly, Olly, Oxen Free!

Thursday, October 25, 2007

It's All CNN's Fault

This morning I couldn't figure out why I had to stitch. I couldn't stop stitching. Couldn't put the needle down. Then I looked over Kiran Chetry's shoulder and saw the big "X" and the word "Floss". CNN has been sending out subliminal messages. At least that will be what I tell the spousal unit when he wonders why absolutely nothing got accomplished around the house today!

And let me give a shout out to Laurie. Taking a picture of one's tv is definitely an acquired skill. This was not easy. I won't be trying it again any time soon. It doesn't help that our tv doesn't fit inside the armoire so it sits on top and watching tv at my house is like watching tv in a bar.
Did anyone catch the Planet in Peril series on CNN this week? I think it's going to be replayed this weekend. Definitely worth watching and a little scary.
I'm currently reading Animal, Vegetable, Miracle by Barbara Kingsolver. To say this book is good is an understatement. In this day and age when more people are trying to eat local, are reminded about the politics of food, it's so timely. This is her family's story of their move from Arizona to Virginia, to attempt to eat off the land and if they don't grow it, to only buy from local farmers. This lifestyle takes dedication but aspects of the book does make me rethink a lot of my choices.
Back in the late 80s early 90s I was a vegetarian. I read Frances Moore Lappe's Diet for a Small Planet. It explained the politics of food, how our food choices here could affect people a world away. I lived by Shopping for a Better World, thought about what I bought at the store. The craving for bacon made me give up the vegetarian lifestyle. I just couldn't do it forever. But I can see the difference in the food choices my oldest son makes compared to his brothers. To this day he chooses fruit over cake, juice over soda. This summer I plan to make a solid effort to grow as much of our own produce as I can. The drought last year was not good, I think I got a total of three tomatoes from two plants.
There's no way I can commit to always buying local, not right now, but I do believe I'm going to think long and hard about the food choices I make for my family. The price of organic anything is now only a few cents more than the regular stuff. I had to buy beef broth the other day, the organic was only 20 cents more. There was a time when the organic version would have been at least a $1 more.
Also--does anyone have a problem with the music player? Would you all prefer that I remove it? I saw it on another blog, can't remember where, and thought I'd try it out. I can't decide if I like it or not. Sometimes it takes the page longer to load and other times it loads right up. Not sure if that's an internet issue or my computer.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

A Letter From:

The Houses of Hawk Run Hollow Home Owners Association

To: Melissa

Re: Village of Hawk Run Hollow

Dear Melissa

In August 2007 you declared your intentions to start development on the North West Florida division of the Village of Hawk Run Hollow township.

Even though we approved your site plan, your choice of materials, we did so against our better judgement. We, the residents of the North West Florida division of Hawk Run Hollow, spent the better part of 2006 at your mercy, living with half completed houses, no electricity and a holiday season that appeared to be anything but festive.

You assured us that you would stay focused on the job at hand. Our Village would be completed in a timely manner. Here it is, the fall/winter holiday season and where, I ask you are our relatives supposed to stay over the Yuletide season? The whole community has been anticipating the completion of Opal's Boarding House. But no, due to your continued delays, the neighborhood will be suffering from overcrowded homes, inlaws, outlaws, cousins, nephews and nieces. Where are we supposed to put them all?

We need our City Hall. Hawk Run Hollow needs some form of government. Are you aware that the people in Lot 6 have not removed the Grinch statue from last Christmas? There is no control, we are a no man's land with no one to enforce our rules and regulations. How can we force people to keep their RVs, boats, and kids' bikes out of sight if we have no one to help us enforce our covenants? The people in Lot 1 have continually let their grass grow over the designated three inches. Can you believe that? Such disregard for community rules!

On top of that we need our school! Our children are driving us crazy! Please, please, please get that school completed ASAP!

It is our understanding that you have abandoned the development of our town and have been spending a lot of time in the Caribbean on a new community. This will not do. We demand that you cease and desist with the development of that project until we see some progress on our much needed town. We placed our faith in you and once again you have let us down.

We expect to hear from you soon with an update and a solid timeline for completion of the Village of Hawk Run Hollow.



Tuesday, October 23, 2007


Thank you to Anna and Edgar: Y'all made my day!

People who don't blog ask me all the time why I started a blog. I started this blog a few years ago as an excuse to write every day. To learn to put my words out there in the universe for better or worse. I never dreamed anyone would ever read it. I also found it a great place to keep track of my projects, my family, and just life in general. I had gotten pretty lazy about journaling so this gave me a place to just write it all down and not have to look for my Moleskine or composition book. I try hard not to plan my posts, I write like I talk, which might not always be a good thing!

I'm supposed to tag ten people but I do believe most people have already been tagged but I do want to say my friend Sharon always makes me smile.

Siobhan, who is blogless, the link to her Webshots album is in my sidebar, makes me smile too. If you haven't visited her album before, be prepared to drool. She just finished Mary Beale's Days of Advent. She is one of my stitching heroes. She doesn't just start a BAP, she finishes it and usually in the same year she started it. Wow!

Andrea always inspires me to stitch more. She has completed many projects I have in the workbasket.

Suz also rocks! Love the tales of the ferrets, the dogs, and her love of nature. She also has great taste in stitching projects.

Rain much?

We've been in the middle of a serious drought most of the summer. All the rain seemed to go to Texas or just miss us. On Thursday the rain moved in and from Thursday morning to Friday afternoon we got close to twenty inches of rain. The picture below is the main parking lot at the public beach. The beach is behind me. This is a little bike, float, skim board rental place. It's a long, long way from the water. This flooding is strictly from the rain.

Whoops loaded the same picture twice, I must try and fix that! The water in this picture reaches all the way to the road where you see that car near the water tower.
The powers that be built up the dunes behind the homes on the beach, that's great if there's a hurricane but now their carports are all flooded from the deluge. I'm not kidding. It's crazy. Fixing one problem and I don't know that those dunes will protect the homes anyway, but that created a whole new kind of problem.
My personal opinion is that no one should be allowed to build on the beach and if you do you do so at your own risk. There's a big argument now in the county next to us regarding beach home owners and beach goers. The home owners don't want locals to be able to use the beach behind their homes but at the same time they want us tax payers to pay for beach restoration for beaches that we can't use. Uh no way! I should state that the beach is public land up to the mean high tide line. The home owners only own, or lease rather, the land up to the high water line.
My dream used to be a home on the beach, now after a few years of bad hurricanes I'm perfectly happy to live a few miles from the beach. It's close enough thank you very much.

Okay, that is a car, water up to the doors. It's in the parking lot of the restaurant that backs up to the beach.
We've had one day of sunny weather since last Thursday. It's storming today and it's a good thing I have a crockpot of this going:
Tomorrow if weather permits, I'll take a new picture of 13th Colony Bay. I worked on it all day Sunday and it was easy to sit and stitch the afternoon away since Sorry Wrong Number was on. The only thing better would have been a Double Indemnity double feature.

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Wild Thursday

Due to these pictures in the September/October 2007 issue of Blueprint magazine I'm obsessing over red and white. I want my bedroom to be red and white and I'd like it now, instead of the three months it will take for me to get it anywhere close to this. My scanner didn't want to cooperate so the scans are about as bad as my photography.

I'm not a quilter by any stretch of the imagination, I play at it. Now I must make a red and white quilt. I have to. I am going to obsess over this for weeks. I can already feel the obsession taking over.
Pictures seen here:
Also add to my red and white obsession. I want to buy hundreds of these peg boards or coat hangers or whatever they are called and fill all the spots usually holding mirrors with stitching. I want them everywhere but most importantly I want one in my currently nonexistent red and white bedroom.
Thanks to everyone for the compliments on 13th Colony Bay and Donna--I would be honored if you posted my finished piece on your website. I really hope to finish it soon--before the end of the year. Thanks for designing such a wonderful scenic design. It really takes me away when I'm stitching it.
Mary-Navarre is home but I don't live on the beach. We're about four miles from the Gulf. I freaked out when you mentioned Navarre in the comments no one knows about Navarre! Pensacola, Ft Walton Beach, even Destin, but Navarre? Very cool!

Monday, October 15, 2007

Autumn in My Part of the World

But first an update on 13th Colony Bay Parts 1-3.

Here's your close up of part one:

Here's part 2:

And what little have done on part 3:

Since it's a very long, long, super long piece of fabric, this was the best I could do to get a shot of the whole piece. I fell off the chair or the picture might have had some of part 3 in it. Just call me the cross stitch papparazzi. I will go to any lengths to get the shot for y'all.

All over blogland, (the blogosphere?) people are posting pictures of fall foilage. It's beautiful, really but to me this is the most beautiful sight in the world. My beach, completely empty of people. It's a beautiful afternoon, 85 degrees in October and there is no one about. This people is about as close to Heaven as I can imagine. This is the view to the east:

This is the view to the west:

And this is the sky this afternoon over the Gulf. I love this place so much.

And here is Riley:

Thursday, October 11, 2007

A Trip to the County Seat

It's not often I venture up north, the north end of the county that is. Today the oldest son and I had business in the county seat so I made him walk around town with me while I took a few pictures. While I live in a small southern town, my end of the county is relatively new. We have lots of tourists, the feel of the community in the south end is different. When I get to go up north, I'm reminded that yes I really do live in a small southern town, and I almost want to move here. The picture below is near the free public parking lot. Wow, how many places still have free public parking? This is a close up the Exchange Hotel--or at least that's what it says on the awning.

Below is a street view of the Exchange. The hotels in my end of the county are Best Western, Comfort Inn, you get the picture. I'm not really sure this is a hotel, could have been a hotel and now maybe has businesses inside? I don't know. Didn't have time to really check it out. I loved the look of the building though.

This is one of a row of old hitchin' posts behind apartments or offices, not sure which. The picture I took of the whole row of posts didn't come out. Why does that not shock me?

This is the building where the hitchin' posts live.

This is the view behind that building. How pretty is that? Right in the middle of downtown.

I had no idea there was a Local History Museum in my county seat. They were closed today but next time maybe I'll take a tour.

This is an old theater. I think the marquee in the front dated it at 1912. Not exactly sure, the picture I took of the front didn't come out, of course.

I might have to try and catch these plays:

What exactly is a Ghost Walk? Trick or Treating?

This is the oldest son outside the Blackwater Joe Coffee House. He's kind of annoyed with me, so annoyed that I wasn't able to snap a picture of Reggie's pigfish sign. Guess I'll save that for next time.

We didn't get a cup of joe at Blackwater Joe because we spent our cash at the Milton Bakery. Darn!
In other news the family is about to toss me out of the house because I keep playing the White Stripes "You Don't Know What Love Is" over and over. I so love that song. I like "Icky Thump" too but not as much as "You Don't Know What Love Is"

Monday, October 08, 2007

Right Now

I am dreaming of starting this: Jane Atkinson

I'm wanting to finish 13th Colony Bay. Really. Really. Seriously. I want to finish this.

I want to work on Sonne Spotte--it's SO beautiful.

I have to finish 6 or 7 ornaments for a swap I'm in. I know what I want to stitch, but I'm not feeling the Christmas spirit at the moment.

I want to get over myself and sew the lining in the fat bottom bags. I hate it when I procrastinate.

I am so ashamed that I watched two straight days of America's Next Top Model on MTV this weekend. I absolutely positively did not want to leave the house at all, for anything. Ok, I didn't want to leave the couch for any reason, not just the house. It's such a great show. I am waiting patiently, sorta, for the new season of Project Runway to start. Come on Nov. 14th!

I want to start my Dresden Plate quilt, knit or crochet a few scarves, finish those fatbottom bags, make some Granny squares, and cross stitch all these amazing projects. There is not enough time in the day. I have overwhelmed myself with projects so instead I do nothing but watch two straight days of America's Next Top Model.

I did work a little bit on Samsarah's Always Be a Wildflower. Considering how much TV I watched you would think I would have that sucker finished but no, I only played at stitching. Made progress but not a lot.

Is it crazy that I'm not really a knitter but I'm wanting, seriously, if I don't get the whole interchangeable set of these I'll just die. I'm not a knitter, I only play at it right now, but these
needles are just beautiful! I think I could become a real knitter with these. Just gorgeous. I've been dreaming about them ever since I got the new Knit Picks catalog in the mail.

Anna-I made those Rachael Ray's Devilish Chili Dogs Recipe Recipezaar today for lunch.
YUM-O! Very good. Thanks for the link.

Tonight's dinner, chicken and noodles. I'm thinking I might make some Moosewood Lentil Soup from the original Moosewood cookbook one day this week. It's still ridiculously hot down here but I'm craving the comfort foods these days and few things are as comforting as that Lentil Soup.

And it's really hard to quilt when the dog ate the plug off the iron. Ironing is kind of important to quilting and if you decide oh well I just embroider some tea towels using one of Aunt Martha's Iron on transfers instead....DOH! The key word would be "Iron" on or maybe the key phrase is "the dog ate the plug off the iron"...hmmmm.....When does America's Next Top Model come on least that doesn't require ironing.

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

One Girl's Trash.....

Is another girl's treasure! A friend--Hi Diana! Gifted another friend--Hey Pam!!! with a box of old cross stitch magazines. This morning Pam and I went through the box to see what magazines we already had and which ones we couldn't live without.

I know what you're thinking, MEOW! Cat fight! Probably better than anything on Rock of Love. Well you're wrong because Pam and I have very different stitching styles. We ran across a few designs we both like but we are very civil. We One Potato, Two Potatoed for them. Very dignified and adult.

I love the Sunflower Sampler to the left and the Quaker, I can't recall if that is in the Best of CS&CC book or not(I have that in the cross stitch library), but I really love the ship sampler, the third from the left. You can't see it but there's a whale in the water. The pilgrim sampler to the far right, I don't know if I'll stitch it but I love those ships in each corner. I think I can figure out a use for them. Thanks Diana! What a fun way to spend the morning.

The generosity of friends never ceases to amaze me. This fabric arrived in my mailbox a few days ago. Thanks Anna! The fabric rocks! Now to find a very special use for it.

It's all Angry Chicken Amy's fault. I started buying Martha Stewart's Everyday Food because Amy kept mentioning it on her blog. I had been very good avoiding this magazine when it first came out. Now I'm hooked. Tonight's dinner is the Country Fried Steak pictured below. I'm making mashed potatoes to go with and will probably make that old staple, green bean casserole along with plain old green beans because I'm search of comfort food right now. Country fried steak and a casserole made with cream of mushroom soup, well that's comfort right there. Also made a Red Velvet cake, thanks a lot Kim-Threadheads Unite! You just had to mention Red Velvet cake the other day! I craved it for several days thinking I could make the mood pass, no way. I love Red Velvet cake. My all time favorite.

Today I was craving chili dogs big time but ever since the dog food scare and discovering that canned chili was canned in the same facility, I have decided that making my own chili would be for the best.
I found these tomatoes already seasoned for chili. Since I'm the only one that even likes chili in my house, this seems a good solution for my chili cravings and it makes a small enough batch that I don't feel guilty making it just for me to put on a hot dog.

Speaking of Rock of Love a few questions for those that admit to watching this GUILTY PLEASURE, how did Rodeo get eliminated? I have missed that episode three different times.
***SPOILER*****(we can hope Blogger keeps a bit of space between this line and the paragraph.)
What do you all think of Jes winning and Heather's hissy fit? I like Jes. Think she was the most normal and while she came off as boring, she did stay true to herself.