Saturday, May 31, 2014

View from my desk on Friday

Octorara Resouvoir, Chester County, PA

One never knows what any given day will bring at my job......the CEO is hosting a fundraiser at her home on Monday and it was all hands on deck Friday to help prepare.   I admit I was reluctant and not looking forward to it on Thursday.   We always have a good time at these prep events but it does take away from the work at the (real) office.    Fortunately, LA, a work BFF, and I got garden duty.    I arrived at work early and put in a couple of hours before heading out to nearby Chester County PA.  Off we went in a company truck to  an Amish farm to buy hanging baskets and flats of flowers.   The baskets serve at decorations for the event then the CEO hands them out to helpers.   So win win win for me.   I got to buy tons of plants with someone else's money, I got to work in the yard, I'll get my choice of baskets Tuesday and I had tons of laughter along the way.     Back to Delaware with the first load which was so well received, we took the truck back for a second load.   

I just got to giggling as this struck me funny when we stopped for coffee.    Where I am from we take the gas can to the gas station not the lawnmower.    This little mini market was at a cross roads in the middle of Amish farms and I have no idea where the little lady driving it came from.   It just tickled my funny bone.

Once back at the farm, we were greeted by one (of the 40 plus) peacocks that roam her property.   I only had my phone so the photos do not show how beautiful he was.   You can not imagine the load rustling noise he makes when he rounds his tail feathers forward.  I am sure it is a defense mechanism.

 Isn't nature too cool how the feathers and colors align perfectly?   Really and truly amazing.

And as for the baskets we got, right above his head to the left is one basket.   Hard to tell by this pic but the baskets were 36" across for $15.  See why we got two truck loads!

 We laughed at this parting looked like an audition for A Chorus Line.  OK enough of the lifestyles of rich and famous and their work crew.

Back just in time for a Memorial Day display from Rensel Studio in Ogden, Utah is this Jeannette Douglas class piece I stitched last year.    Ever have a piece you are particularly proud of?   Right now it is this one for me.

Pat, a stitching pal, took the class with me and we sent out pieces together to Rensel.   She picked a different frame.   One with more of a cottage look in white.   Amazing how the two frames give equally beautiful but different results.

Sorry for the glare - just trying to get a close up of the detail of the cut outs.

Have a great day all......may your tasks be few and your stitches many.

Next time, my great progress with Gracie Baby!

Monday, May 26, 2014

Happy Memorial Day

Visited my County's Veteran's Cemetery this morning.

 This gentleman looked like he was remembering friends since gone.

Immediate thoughts of those left behind came to mind with this view in my side mirror as a drove away.

Saturday, May 17, 2014

The List

Well I took a really critical and a much needed honest look at my "to do" list.  I'd have to a Wonder Woman to think I could do this all myself.  I am no longer the gal that feels compelled to do it all.  With that said, I have been getting estimates on painting.  The first estimate disappointed me.  Suffice it to say it was so HIGH I knew I would never part with my hard earned money to pay someone to do what I could do.....albeit it would take me ten times longer.  Second estimate in, but this guy doesn't do handyman work.  Not to be discouraged.  One step at a time.  

I took a vacation day yesterday to get a jump on all things yard-like for the weekend and we had torrential rain all day.  

This is the shredded mess of leaves left on the pool deck.  Leaves
look like they went through the blender.
I took the opportunity to finish painting the trim in the guest room.  I am embarrassed to say I painted the room a couple of (let's be honest) several years ago but never completely finished the trim or took care of the holidays. "Holidays" are what my mom always called the work we missed!   I used this expression with a girlfriend and she was amused.  She never heard of such a thing.  She was born and raised in the Chicago area and it got me thinking of the different terms we know based on where we are from.  My friend from North Carolina taught me to say "bless your heart" ...sounds nice but if you are from (at least her part of) North Carolina you know you've just told someone off!  Makes them walk away scratching their head....was she being nice or ....wasn't she?

As for stitching I have been concentrating on Grace Mason only.  I look kind of silly carrying a big bag with a pillow case covered q-snapped piece into work for a few quick lunch time stitches.   I am trying, ( I really am!) to stick to my vow to only work on finishing things and not starting anything new - on all fronts - until can decrease the size of my to-do lists.   My goal this weekend is to finish the two baskets.
I don't know why I was fretting about these baskets.   EZ-PZ 

I am liking the colors more and more.   Almost in the homestretch now
The sun came up today for a beautiful day and rather than tackle the flower beds and surely get a wet bottom from the soggy ground,  I am out the door to wire brush to prep for priming/painting the pergola and cross that job off my list.

Before I start I took a yard tour.   I re-located my gazing ball to the back yard.  Now I can enjoy it from my deck.
My Peony is getting ready to POP!

 English Woods Hyacinths - a favorite of mine.

Love the new growth on the Lucky Charms* tree.  

 * I will have to dedicate entire post to the explanation of why
it is called the Lucky Charms tree.   Maybe a TBT post.

This is my view backing out of the driveway on the way to work.

Coral Bells coming on strong

Bleeding Hearts - should have gotten a photo last week.   Another favorite of mine.  

 hmmm, don't remember the name of this one but it is looking like I have a lot of 'pink' flowers.

Hopefully I will have enough time left over this weekend to prep all my potted plants for their summer home on the deck.  And what do I see - more shades of pink!   Geraniums, sweet potato vine and marigolds waiting to be planted.

A wire brush and ladder and power washer await me....enjoy the day......get some stitches in and thanks for stopping by.

Sunday, May 11, 2014

Happy Mother's Day All

I had a fab day.....I spent the day doing something I wanted.    

Step one - painted a circle in the grass. 

 Step two - laid out the fire ring to check the size.

Step three - dug out the dirt and leveled the ground.

Step four - two courses of blocks completed.

 Step five - All done.  Start to finish an hour and a half.    Deb enjoying 
snacks and wine by my new fire pit once we were finished.  

This view would have been a much nicer view if I thought to move my 
wheelbarrow from the background!  

 Night time view with the new solar lights.

A great day and many relaxing nights ahead.

Sunday, May 4, 2014

Out of balance

Oh I do wish I could find a way to strike a balance between all the things I want to do and have to do.   I want to work outside but than things inside slide.  I want to stitch but that means things in the yard don't get done.  I could find myself busy outdoors all weekend but then there is no grocery shopping and we don't eat.  I have some needed website maintenance to do but than I can't stitch.  Oh me oh my!   No wonder I had so many things partly finished!   My daughter innocently commented a few weeks any room in your house finished?   I guess it struck a cord.  Trim needs painting in one room, another room has one wall with no quarter round, a new bathroom floor and new threshold are needed for the powder room, drywall repairs elsewhere, curtains need to be made for yet another room, and let's not even talk about the bedroom and closet doors upstairs that neighbor installed but never finished before he decided to divorce his wife and move away.  (Geez, I guess in the case of the doors, it shouldn't be all about me!).   Anyway I could fill a sheet of paper with all the "little things" that need to be finished (see below - I actually filled THREE sheets of paper!!!).  It can be so overwhelming with where to start sometimes!  Maybe I can tackle one a week and be realistic along the way by moving some of the chores to a list for a handy man to hire! and more important not stray and start yet another household project until some of these are done.  (I hear the laughter from family)

Some more things not completed but with progress to share.  Grace Mason took a giant leap towards completion.  I worked solely on Grace Mason at my stitching retreat in Ocean City Maryland last weekend.

This row is not fully stitched but the major counting and placement has been done.  Completion, of this row at least,  is not far behind.  Two of the eight of us stitching this are completed and framed.   The rest of us are at about the same place.

For my semi-annual retreat, the three-day weekend morphed into a four-day weekend a few years ago and I think it may turn into a five-day weekend in the fall.   (See my other blog for details).  I hope to dedicate the majority of all things stitching to this piece until I can complete it.......yeh, like that is really going to happen.  I am sure something bright and sparkling will cause me to stray.

Also a little to show on Penny America.  Not much to show with only a few stitches in each lunchtime.

This is a fun stitch that is near and dear to me.  I will keep plugging away, a few stitches each lunch hour.

Today I will do some much needed computer work and will work on putting things where they belong I the house.   I'd like to know how things go so quickly from being orderly to there being so many things out of place in the house!?!  Maybe that way I can strike that balance I need and tackle one household chore/repair at a time and actually run a great big fat sharpie marker line through that hire.

OMGosh!  I actually made that 'to do' list.   Either I do to much or I haven't done enough and created this backlog.

Thanks for stopping by.  Have a great week one and all.  Hopefully I will be back to share progress on all fronts soon.