Monday, March 29, 2010

You are where you are for a reason

The ' L I T T L E ' Things~
As you might remember, the head of a company survived 9/11 because his son started kindergarten.
Another fellow was alive because it was his turn to bring donuts. One woman was late because her
Alarm clock didn't go off in time. One was late because of being stuck on the NJ Turnpike because of an auto accident. One of them missed his bus. One spilled food on her clothes and had to take time to change.
One's car wouldn't start.   One couldn't get a taxi.   The one that struck me was the man who put on a new pair of shoes that morning, took the various means to get to work but before he got there, he developed
a blister on his foot. He stopped at a drugstore to buy a Band-Aid.  That is why he is alive today..

Now when I am stuck in traffic, miss an elevator, turn back to answer a ringing telephone .....all the little things that annoy me. I think to myself, this is exactly where God wants me to be at this very moment.

Next time your morning seems to be going wrong, when you can't find your car keys, when you hit every traffic light, don't waste your day being uptight and angry......it may just be that God is at work watching over you.   You are where you are for a reason.

WIP Completion Project!

Just because I have to be confusing........I decided to extend my WIP project and give-a-way.   Truth be told, I am not a super woman and cannot expect to finish some of my WIP's in 4 weeks time!  So hey, what do you think would be a good time frame?    I was going to say June 17, the first day of summer; then I thought of Labor Day/start of the school year and I ended up with a date in the middle!   Let's get this going and add another wrinkle.   Let me repeat the rules, share the change to the deadline and add a step. 

This is my quest to tie up the loose ends. We have all done it....come within stitches of completing a project and gotten wooed away to another.  It is almost like being an unfaithful tart when I put it that way!   For whatever reason, we all have WIP's that we need that extra little encouragement to complete.   So here it is!  Join me in the WIP Completion Project!

To be part of the WIP  Completion Project:
1. Post here info about your finishes and I will have a give away on May 1st. July 18th revised date!!
2. Comment to this POST ONLY -  Not to worry/Hazel and Raven  I got you covered from your earlier responses! 
3. It is not necessary to post a link on your site to my site but you can.
4. It is not necessary to be a follower but you can.
5. Post a reply to this post about a project you've have in the pile for a least a year that finally finished it.
6. Your name will be added one time for each older project you finish between now and July 18th.
7. NEW - Post on your blog a before and after picture and let us all know about it.
8. Be sure to include your contact information.
9.  All that random generator number stuff to select a winner!!!

I will have to provide an update of what the give a way will be since the idea just popped into my head this second! There I go again, starting something anew when I have a pile to still do! Just think how good you will feel to get one of those items done/completed/finished!  Feel free to include any tidbit of info or story about your piece!
Now let's get stitching!

Sunday, March 28, 2010

I also received another award! I couldn't believe it! I received it from Tracey at I Stitch Therefore I Am  love that blog title! I feel so fortunate to be awarded given the company of all the great stitchers and bloggers out there.  Thank you  Tracey! This award is for bloggers who inspire others with positivity and creativity. The rules for accepting the award are:

1. Put the logo on your blog or within your post.  - Done
2. Pass the award to 8 bloggers.  - Done
3. Link the nominees within your post. - Done
4. Let them know they received this award by commenting on their blog. - Done
5. Share the love and link to the person from whom you received this award. - Done

With no further delay, here are my nominees. I tried to pick different bloggers from the last award. It has been fun to follow and find new blogs by following who my nominees passed their nomination on to...  
wonderful blogs!!

1. Feathers in the nest
2. I'd Rather Be Stitching
3. The Craft Room
4. Stitch by Stitch
5. Quietly Stitching

Week 13 - My Small Changes

The Queen of Unfinished Projects so aptly decribes my path.    Although not a revelation...me thinks it is time to do something about it.     I kind of got a real wake up call when I putting away my new purchases from last week and even though I know I have a STABLE Stash I was almost - I say almost - horrified at the sh$$load of STUFF!   This is even after weeding it out.   I kind of made a pledge to myself not to start anything new - key word start; no mention of not purchasing.    I have noted before that if there is such thing as a crafters ADD, I have it!  I start many a project with whole hearted zeal and somewhere along the line I become bored and start something new.   This is not limited to stitching.    Ha!  if only.   Let's see I had, just had to paint the bathroom last August.  I am happy to say I completed it, sewed the curtains and installed the crown molding.   But did I caulk the molding......well I started to.....and the bedroom I painted in February - walls and ceilings finished but look at the baseboard!  Seems I got to the corner where the paint cans and sawhorse were and I stopped. 

In spring, I have a heart to heart with myself and walk from room to room making a list of what needs to be fixed, patched, touched up, etc.  Well it is now time and my list is long.   To that end, I have two cross stitch finishes this week and a cross stitch resurrection!   I finished the stitching on the Dinah name tag from the Nan Tyson Euler class months ago, but I never 'finished'.  So this week I did.  I started to add the little picot edging but I was doing such an uneven job I knew it best to frog and move on, lest this project remain on the unfinished list.    Next I finished Bent Creek's Americana Blue.   I mixed it up a bit since the pattern called for dated it and the year in the chart was 2000.   This is the second in a series of three that I have completed so the framing will be waiting until all three are done.   Given my current mission, who knows when that will be....since I am not STARTING anything new until I FINISH a few more.     Granted, some of the items in my WIP pile are non-doers!  They are things someone else started that I don't have my heart in; they are class projects to complete; a wedding sampler for a couple who broke their engagement....I mean how can I finish that?

So in this quest to tie up the loose ends, I came across this beauty.   All I can tell you is that it is a Sunset design  and I know I was stitching on it 15 years ago!   I still like the design.   Although the fabric is stained I plan to stitch away and hope to tea stain it when complete.  It is in my current works basket along with my Between the Sheets Sampler.    This is where I am going to dedicate my time!

Another finishing project......I was in the monthly Shepherd's Bush several years ago.   Once I completed each month......I did nothing with them put them in my finishing basket.  And there they have sat with their respective fabrics.   My plan is to finish up in the next couple of weeks April, May and June in little fanfolds for my desk at work.  Seems I have stored away April so well I can't even find it!  Join me in completing projects! 
Be part of the WIP Project.
1. Post here info about your finishes and I will have a given away on May 1st.  
2. Not necessary to link to my site but you can.
3. Not necessary to be a follower but you can.
4. Post a reply to this post about a project you've have in the pile for a least a year that finally finished it.
5. Your name will be added one time for each older project you finish between now and May 1st.
6. Be sure to include your contact information.   
I will have to provide an update of what the give a way will be since the idea just popped into my head this second!   There I go again, starting something anew when I have a pile to still do!  Just think how good you will feel to get one of those items done/completed/finished!

And then there is the TUSAL!  How can I not even complete that challenge!!!!  At the rate I am adding to the mug, I may need to transfer for a different container.  Now to catch up on all the lovely posts and emails.   I have been lax this week on emails and postings so I have my work cut out for me.   

So for this week, I vow to finish two things on my list before I start anything new and hopefully I will be able to post a lot of finished over the next month and be able to start something new.   I always start something new on our retreat in May so that is my goal!

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Give-a-way

Jennifer at Feathers in the Nest is offering a great give-a-way to celebrater her son's return from Afghanistan.   Check it out    Give-a-way to celebrate Brandon's homecoming.

My Small Changes - Week 12

This week my small change is to read the local paper daily.   The paper, which non-resident friends have called only good for fish wrap, is only 10 to 12 pages long and 3 of those are real estate and car sales.   But I need to read it to keep up on local events, local sales and heaven forbid the obituaries to see if a loved one of a friend may have passed.   

I used to read the paper more religiously when the kids were younger to make sure I knew about upcoming events,  knew the school lunch menu, saw the game scores and event the occasionally name of your kid in print. 

I have to thank all of you who have commented on My Small Changes and other posts.   Blogging has become a great outlet and way to chronicle my life and I really enjoy it.   My Small Changes started because there was not just one thing I needed to change as a New Year's Resolution and there you have it.   I  am amazed at how my other's identify and have chimed in, .....hey yeah, me too, I need to do that.......Reading the paper each morning with fit right in with my stopping to eat breakfast each morning!  
 
Again, not a big change or a big deal but it wouldn't be a small change if it were. 

Have a great week and thanks for stopping by.

Wow - What a week!

Working backwards from yesterday..... I had a bus trip and I was so excited to go, I kept waking up all night for fear I''d oversleep and miss the bus.  Yeah, sounds like I have no life.....oh contraire'.   Anyway, I took bus trip to Woodlawn.   This was my first trip to Woodlawn and what a wonderful day.   So much thanks to Pam Silverman of the Creative Needlework Guild in NJ.   Check out the slideshow of the Woodlawn display.   It was a great day; meet some new friends, became better friends with some acquaintances and just thoroughly enjoyed the day.   My husband teased me that I would be wasting the wonderful springtime weather they were predicting on a bus trip.   Oh, he just doesn't get it.  

So after our lunch at Woodlawn, which was very  very good,  and a couple of walks through the mansion we went by bus to In Stitches needlework shop.   Oh I want to move to Alexandria VA so they can become my LNS!!!!  The ladies had lite refreshments set up for our little bus group in their classroom and we made it worth their efforts as we all left with purchases in hand.     Yes, there were some things that I just HAD to get to add to my STABLE Stash.  And I got smart, I did the whole soup to nuts and got floss and fabric too.  

The staff of In Stitches provided goodie bags which were handed out on the way home.   I snagged a Just Nan!    It is "Pansies Please".

I haven't made the pledge not to buy more but I am making the pledge to NOT START anything new until something is finished.   Must be why I have dedicated my time to the Nan Tyson Euler class project.  My stitching progress has been slow.   I am working on the strap work of the Between the Sheets sampler.   And because I don't follow instructions too well, I did stitch in the gold and did not wait to do it last.   I mean, c'mom.......a girl's got to see what it is going to look like.


Let's see what I couldn't bear to leave at In Stitches....Litte House Needle and Thread;
JBW - French Country Alphabet, love JBW!!!  I couldn't decide between the WDW Purple Majesty or CC Four Leaf Clover so I got both flosses.


Shephard's Bush - My Mom's Garden.  Doesn't SB put together such a nice product?  Then a little quickie from Bent Creek called Autumn.....you know if it has a squirrel, chances are I will stitch it.


Mrs. Waddlelow's Huswif --- another Ellen Chester....love it!  Last it is Pineapple Welcome from Sunflower Samplings.  I've done one of theirs before.

Since I don't do well with stitching on a bus, I k'nitted.    My skill level is not the greatest so I k'nit dishclothes.   I did manage 1 1/2 dishclothes on the way.

Working back into the week past, I'll just give the highlights.   It was so hectic I never even posted my TUSAL!  Oh no, can't even keep up with that.   lol   Monday was just a 10 hour workday and collapsed when I got home.  Tuesday I enjoyed dinner with my brother and sister - always lots of laughing.   Wedensday - I was lucky to have my Gavers for dinner.   He has been doing so well in school and cub scouts and loves to read that I let him download a book to him to read on my Kindle!   Strict strict instructions that he is not to go onto the Amazon Whipsernet for fear he would download their entire library!    Friday - I worked 13 hours!  We put the annual report for the company to bed on Friday save for the final final review by officers over the weekend.   I spoke with our publisher and got really nice kudos from them which made it all worth it!    Funny they gushed at how I went over the top but I was just doing my normal work ethic.  

Gee - left out Thursday - after a harrowing  two days of running around doing my job and the job of another who was out on both Wedsnesday and Thursday - I went to class and proceeded to fall asleep when they turned out the lights.    Not so bad, but the teacher annouced "someone fell asleep!" when the lights went on and they all chimed in about my snoring.   How embarrassing!   Oh well......guess I was relaxed and comfortable.  So suffice it to say I made no progress on My Small Changes - Working on my files.

Now to get outside and enjoy this gorgeous day.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Week 11 - My Small Changes

I consider myself pretty 'with it' considering others I know my age.   I mean, I blog, I have a Facebook account, I have a Twitter account, I pay my bills online, I shop online, have a Paypal account, I buy on eBay, visit Craigslist, I backup my systems, I've eaten tofu for Pete's sake!   My filing system, however,  has not evolved with me.    It is still in the 90's.   In this age of more and more electronic files and fewer paper files, I need to do something.    About 10 years ago my husband took over the bill paying to my great relief.   I hate to say it but we are in better financial straights than we were when I did it but there are contributing factors.   a. better salaries; b. kids out of college; c. kids out of the house!  And he has the whole electronic filing system down.   It is me that needs to catch up.    shhh! we can't tell him that.

So look at my current system(ssss).  This is the filing cabinet that I hope to downsize to.  



I have a file cabinet which still houses interims reports from grammer school and my baby is almost 30!    (Maybe I should give them to him at his upcoming birthday!)  Look at the valuable space this is taking up in my craft room!



I have every tax return, just recently shredded the paystubs from my first job in 1973....those paystubs that were banded by year and stored away with my husband's from 1973 til (almost) current.  Fortunately for us, his company went electronic a few years ago.    I recently heard on TV on a tax tip the time frame for keeping files.  I need to destroy this time capsule I am keeping.   Not only do I have EVERYTHING from day one, I have it stored in 3 or 4 places. 

Trust me, this antique trunk holds all the tax returns,  my father's final tax returns and my mother's estate papers. 

One plastic file under my desk; another plastic file in my walk in closet!  Wouldn't it be nice if something were to happen to my husband and I that my kids would not have to play huckle-buckle bean stalk and go on a scavenger hunt to find things... ..and then they probably wouldn't find things til years later!And this is the stack 'o stuff on the shelf in my closet waiting to be filed. 

I have been sorting and purging closets and cabinets in my efforts to downsize as a pre-emptive strike prior  to  any thoughts of moving so why not my filing system?   I know I have owner's manuals to items that have gone the wayside.   So this week my small change is to be pro-active on cleaning and consolidating my filing.   This is going to involve much more than a week.   I need to make the start this week, one file, one folder at a time.   What a pile of shredding I will create.   It may require me taking an entire lunchtime at the company shredder!

On to stitchie stuff......not a whole lot of stitching time this week.   Stayed a few nights late at work because I am involved with the corporate annual report (saw the proto type Friday - it is awesome!!  We are going totally electronic to be green and I will post the link when done.  It is so pretty!!!)  I am doing no more than creating the schedule, coordinating the schedule and maintaining the schedule to keep everything on time.  Not to worry, I am not belittling that task.   Days of meetings, seriously Thursday was 8:30 - 12:30, Lunch meeting 12:30 - 2 and meeting 3 - 5.....so how do you get your normal tasks done without staying a few extra hours.   And I had two days like that this week!!!!!  It's all good.  We all know we have those push times. 

And then there is the additional office I have taken on with my volunteer organization.   In addition to being the webmaster/secretary/membership chair, I am now the treasurer as well!  You know these volunteer organizations...there are never enough bodies to go around and we all wear multiple hats.   Long ago I learned that there are givers and takers in this world and that you can pretty much go through every situation and easily identify which line people fall into.....I know which line I end up in!   It is a good thing to give back and I am proud that my children all fall into that same line.

But to continue on the stitching......progress made on my Nan Tyson Euler piece and a couple of observations.    The progress part is the lettering in the center is now complete, I have extended the borders up the side to meet the band's progress and I learned I really dislike the stepped herringbone.   It is not a fast stitch.   Also, I have decided, even though the colors of the silks are beautilful and the feel is awesome, I am not a big fan of the *quick* change of the colors.  Literally, one stitch is light green and the next jumps right to dark green.    Personally I like the subtle varigation better but to each his own......like I say....it's all good. 

We had our monthly guild meeting yesterday and again it was no disappointment.   These ladies are awesome.   Awesomely friendly, awesomely talented.   We had a speaker in and although it takes from the stitching time the knowledge you gain is well worth it.  We are planning our annual retreat to Ocean City, Maryland and I can't wait.  It is 3 days of nothing but good food, good friends, good stitching, and good shopping in Salty Yarns - which adjoins the hotel, and it is on the boardwalk!   What could be a better?

and the award goes to.....

OMG!    Belinda at Samplings from a Blue Ribbon Girl  presented me with my first blog award today.   Actually it was a few days ago and it took me that long to compose my 'acceptance' posting.   I feel like Sally Field at the Academy Awards.....:"you like me, you really like me" which I have heard is one of those quotes attributed to people but were never really said.   Anyway......this is pretty cool! Thank you so much Belinda! It is strange receiving an award for maintaining my little online diary of my life, likes and dislikes.  Even stranger receiving an award for checking out other's postings.  In the beginning, I would have to ask my daughter....what's my password again? ...how do I get in?   However during the last year I got more into blogging.   It has allowed me to share my joy of needlework and life with others as well as take ''peeks" at others works, ideas, etc.   I have learned so much.   The blogging world of stitchers is a great place to be a part of.

Here's how this award words.  The rules are simple:
  1. One must accept the award
  2. Thank the person who gave you the award.
  3. Add a link to the person who gave you the award.
  4. Paste the award on your blog.
  5. Write 10 things about yourself others might not know
  6. Pass the award on to 10 others.

So, I have done #1, #2, #3 and #4 above.   Now for #5....  I don't know that there are ten facts, let alone interesting facts about me to share!  I don't think of myself at interesting but I will try.  The rules don't say they have to be interested, just facts.....lol!
  1. My right shoulder is lower than my left.  My children love to poke fun acting like Igor with arm dragging.  It is NOT that noticable but required four years of corrective gym instead of regular gym....which I believe only made it worse!
  2. I have only live in 3 houses in my lifetime, all within an 8 mile radius.  Four is you count the one I moved from before I was two so I don't remember it.
  3. I love watching Design Star and Project Runway. 
  4. I was addicted to HGTV long before Extreme Makeover ever existed.
  5. I had 5 years of Latin in high school - started in 8 grade.   (Boring fact!)
  6. I believe I am a little OCD.  Realizing this when I noticed I clean my desk at work 5 times a day putting away all the pencils, paper clips, etc. to have a clean work area. 
  7. I love Craftsman Style homes and my dream is to live in one some day.
  8. I have never been pulled over by a police officer and would probably pee my pants if I were stopped!  TMI TMI!  (Gosh - I hope I don't jinx myself!!)
  9. I am a left-hander person in a right-handed world.
  10. When I do things, like painting a room, cooking on the grill, playing shuffle board, I put my free hand behind my back which is a source of great amusement to my children.   I blame it on my father making me sit on my right hand at dinner so I would use it to help get the food on my fork!

And  if I thought #5 was hard......here are my nominations in no particular order.   This is hard because there are so many sites I enjoy following and learn from.   If only I could nominate more, my list of favs is a long one.  Like Belinda who nominated me, I considered writing something about each one but my comments would be a string of kudos and praises.  I so enjoy my time at each of the sites of these incredibily gifted and talented and generous people and hope you will too.   Check them out! 


  1. Istitchaholic 
  2. Between Crosses with Nina - I do have to say, she has the most exquisite photography!
  3. TeaKettle Corner
  4. Craftymoo
  5. Quietly Stitching
  6. The Twisted Sister
  7. A Work in Progress
  8. A Box of Chocolates
  9. The Painted Quilt
  10. Stampin Fun with Selene
I think one of the fun parts is visiting the other blogs you haven't found yet!

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Hand over Fist!

I have been plodding along here since the holidays watching my dimes and pennies for no other reason than it just seems to be my January - February ritual.   The calm after the holiday frenzy.   I have packed lunch, haven't been to the mall, haven't shopped at Boscov's, Target or Kohl's since the week between Christmas and New Year's and then BAM! all of a sudden the money have been pooring out hand over fist. 

It seems the last two weeks I have been to a  fundraising dinner, birthday lunches at work, dinner with a friend from high school, a quick dinner out before class, a special present for my little brother.   It seems to be feast or famine.  You have nothing or have everything at once.  Somewhere in there, I succumbed to one of my crazy passions.   Postcards!  I love to search ebay and find old post cards from my town.  Look at these....they were 5 for $5 so no biggie. 


  I just like to imagine what those ladies walking on pier were thinking or saying where exciting they were off too.  Click on the image above.   The ladies are on the top card to the right. 


Or what about the kids in front of the school.   Truth be told, it was probably some artist rendering.  


 Anyway......so then there was this pattern I couldn't live without......isn't it darling?  Thankfully I had never put in print a pledge to complete all my WIP's before buying anything new.    But I will go out on a little bit of a limb to vow to complete some before I start yet another project.   I often wonder if I have some sort of crafters ADD.   Seriously, I love the start, I love the progress and then somewhere at 85% finished I lose interest.  And it doesn't matter how large or small the project may be!

Then I ordered these pretty counting/marking pins.   Somewhere along the way I didn't read the fine print that these are suited to canvas work......just means they will be a give away and I will have to head over to Tommye's site to order the right size for me.   They are too pretty.  It is nice to surround youself with pretty things.   I just might have to order the matching scissors fob when I order the correct size for myself!

Sunday, March 7, 2010

Week 10 - My Small Changes

hhhhhhhhhmmmmmmmmmm, what to pick.   Believe it or not there is still a list of small changes I would like to make, I could make, I need to make so what will it be............

For my small change this week, I think I will try to take a deep breath before opening my mouth.   No big deal you may think but I have a habit over barrelling ahead with words spewing from my lips out of the fear I won't get my two cents in.     I do this at work especially when I feel I need to tell my side of the equation, when I need to jump on a situation where the people in my department are being taken advantage of, when I need to defend a decision I made for my department or when confronted with irrational behaviors and expections of others. 

I need to learn to take a deep breath.  I need to let others complete their say.   Or more important I need to think about what I may say before I erupt into a blurting of words....or at least appear to be thinking about what they are saying.   Maybe the pause will emphasize my point.   Maybe the pause will add drama but that is definitely not my motivation.   I hope my deep breath will show others I am receptive to their point; that I won't appear as one who goes off the handle; that I will show maturity in my position; and allow me time to evaluate all sides.   I will contemplate; I will let things sink in;  I will appear brilliant (cough) in my answers and responses.   

Hey!  I bet this method will work wonders with my kids when I delay a response even half a second.....I wonder what dancing they will do when Mom doesn't just jump on every whim.......the possibilities are endless. 

Saturday, March 6, 2010

Stitching and Cleaning

A quick post to show my progress.   I haven't had a lot of stitching hours this week but I am pleased the progress I have made.   Right now I am taking a break from the spring house cleaning!


 
This sampler calls for stitching from the bottom up.  Not my usually way but it is because of the painting of the linen where we placed the house.   The line under the letters is the half-way mark.   I love doing the letters!  They go so fast.   Sorry for the wrinkles and the long shadows cast by the early morning sunlight.   The table when I usually take my photos is still covered with freshly washed glassware that have not been arranged in display yet.


I have been following the lead of Susan from A Work in Progress and cleaning.  I am scrubbing walls, washing windows and sheers and cleaning glassware in my dining room.   OMG!  It is embassassing to admit I didn't remember the shades on the ceiling fan weren't frosted.   Back to the bucket o' vinegar water.

The George Read House - more Hearth Cooking info

This is the comment on the Hearth Cooking class from the Curator of Eduation.    I thought I'd make it a post of its own so everyone could get the info

"Anonymous said...

Wow, I must say that I love your entry on the Read House and Gardens Open Hearth Cooking Workshop! The Read House has a different menu each year and holds 3 or more workshops each winter, on select Saturdays. Information may be found on http://www.dehistory.org/ If anyone is interested in signing up for future workshops email (amilej@dehistory.org) or call me (302-322-8411) with your name and email address, and any other contact information you would like to share. Thanks for sharing our work with your blog!

Antoinette Milej
Curator of Education
Delaware Historical Society
Read House and Gardens"



I have been to classes two years in a row.   The first year we made Pies and Puddings.   But these were not the kind of pies you think.   They were meat pies and they were delicous.   With some adaptations for the modern oven, the chicken pie we made has become a family favorite.
This year the theme was of a dutch and swedish variety and equally delicious.   I have already made one of the recipes for my family.  Next year - tentative - they are taking about "Philadelphia Fare" so all things Philadelphian.   I say bring on the Philadelphia Cream Cheesecake!  See the post from last week on Hearth Cooking for more photos!

Monday, March 1, 2010

Great Give-aways!

Check out Jennifer's great give-away and good thoughts her son will be home soon!  http://feathersinthenest.blogspot.com/2010/02/st-patricks-day-give-way-dont-miss-this.html

Also check out Sarah at the Crafty Moo for her giveaway..  http://craftymoo-sarah.blogspot.com/2010/02/very-late-blogversary-give-away.html