Sunday, March 29, 2009

Weekend's Over - RR ready to send & stressed out household

The weekend is finishing up and I was able to finish up Kathy's RR in order to get it in the mail tomorrow, before taking off to North Carolina on Tuesday. I love the colors that Kathy chose - lavendars, lime greens, dusty blues. I was going to do a different heart and even started to stitch it, but it wasn't lining up with her middle; so I decided to remove it and stitch the one that Michele did - that way I can be sure that I got my heart in the right place.

I am glad that the weekend is over...not a typical reaction most people have on a Sunday evening. But this was not a "fun" weekend. I felt like I was "walking on eggshells" around my DH - things get stressful like this when things don't go "his way". I think that all of this hockey travel for the 2 boys, which takes us in two different directions is wearing on us. Also, I have been doing the majority of the travel with the older son - and this weekend he is going to Nationals which is a HUGE thing - which DH would love to be at (but as the team manager, I have to be there). Our younger son is going to his hockey State Finals next weekend, so DH needs to go there with him. Well - we are looking forward for both boys' exciting finale(s) to their hockey season.

On the "good" side of the weekend - not only did I finish up the RR - but I got all the bathrooms cleaned today! That is a good thing and a nice way to leave the house.

I wish everyone a good week! Remember to Live, Laugh, Love and Stitch often! Lisa

Thursday, March 26, 2009

A fly by posting....thoughts of next weeks travels

Hello out there in blog land - it has been a basically busy week as weeks go here in my household. A lot of hockey practices to go to as both boys' teams are getting ready for the last Big Show of the year - Older Son, Robert is going to Nationals in North Carolina and Younger Son, Matthew is going to State Finals in Southern California. I'll be off to NC next week and DH will be off to SoCal. It seems like we all are never in the same place lately. However...tonight there is NO HOCKEY practice! Yahoo! And we all can be home together!

I am looking forward to the trip over to NC, not only to be there for my son and Nationals (I hear it is something to really take in and experience)...but I have family coming to meet us there. My parents, from Minnesota; my in-laws from Kansas and an Uncle/Aunt will be driving over from another part of NC to meet up with us. But the really neat thing is, my grandmother (Robert's great-grandmother) will be able to travel up from SC to meet up with us all. My parents are helping to make this happen. In the beginning of the season, when we heard the hockey schedule and the locations of Nationals being in NC...I kept hoping that the team would make it there - for how neat would it be to have my grand mother be there to see her great-grandson play hockey. When we were at District finals in Seattle on March 8, and we were getting ready to play in the Championship, my son looks at me and says "this is for Gi-Gi (great-grandma)." All during that game, as the boys played very well...I had a feeling that this year long "dream" would come true, but it wasn't until the final second ticked off the clock that it became a realization that we would be going to NC and grandma would be able to see this. I am a little sad that my grandfather (who recently passed away on Christmas Eve) will not be there...but I believe that he was at Districts in spirit and he will definitely be there at Nationals!

Well, I didn't mean to write all that above...but these are thoughts that have been going through my head as we get closer to the event.

On the stitching side of things....I received Kathy's RR from Michele on Monday. Very excited to stitch on it - I picked the heart I wanted to stitch and the colors of floss from her choices included in the package. I counted out the number of stitches from the heart she started with to the one that I chose...and began to stitch. After a while I saw that the center of the chosen heart wasn't lining up to the grid that she measured out. So after confirming with her - I decided to just rip out the stitches and then start a different one, which was located under the one Michele stitched...this was a little easier to count out to and begin, without the feeling that it was in the wrong place. While I am enjoying this RR a is funny how stressed out I get myself when stitching on others.

Hope everyone is having a wonderful Spring day! Take care! And remember:
Live...Laugh...Love...and Stitch Often!

Monday, March 23, 2009

Hockey weekend - and now to the beginning of another week...

It is Monday, and like everyone else I wonder where the weekend went. This weekend was "playoff" weekend for my younger son's hockey team. The top 4 teams in his age division (called Squirts which are 9-10 year olds) battled for the title "NorCal Champions" as well as battled for a 1st or 2nd place which advances them to the State Finals; which take place April 3-5....the same weekend I am in North Carolina with my older son for his hockey team's battle at Nationals. Matthew and his team battled hard - they won their first game 4-1 (and Matthew got the team winning goal, which is the 2nd one for this game). They lost their second game and tied their third...but due to the way the other teams ended up - Matthew and his team came in second and went to play in the Championship game yesterday. Unfortunately, they did lose - but because they did come in 2nd they still advance and go to STATEs. So, once again the family will be in two different parts of the US for a weekend. But I think that will be the last weekend of travel for quite awhile. It has all been good things to travel for...but the cost is hitting the pocketbook and it is time to curtail the spending for awhile.
However, while I have been home these last few weekends, I have been making a dent in some of the house hold chores that seem to get ignored when I am busy or out of town. I go the lawn mowed and started to weed the back yard - I will probably have another go at it next weekend before I take off for North Carolina on the 31st of March. I also got the kitchen floor cleaned & mopped. Yahoo (that should last a least for a few days).

On the Stitching side of life...I did get a little work done on my little "Wish, Dream...". But not enough to show right now. It sounds like I will be receiving Kathy's Friendship Sampler RR from Michele this week (please Mr. or Mrs. Postperson) - and I look forward to receiving it and working on my heart for hers. This is really a fun activity!

Well...time to get the week started - school for the boys and work for DH & I; followed by hockey practices for the National & State bound boys...hope this week brings you all much love, laughter and goodness! Remember to Stitch often! Lisa

Friday, March 20, 2009

An Update on Friday

It is Friday - Yippee! This weekend is NorCal (stands for Northern California) hockey playoffs for my younger son. Tonight is the first game, followed by 2 tomorrow - and then depending on how well his team does, there might be the Championship game on Sunday. It will be fun to all be home to focus on the younger son...for the older one has been getting a lot of attention regarding his hockey.

Earlier in the week, I mailed off the Friendship Sampler RR and hear that it has already been received in AZ. So, while I have been waiting to receive the one coming from WA, I have been working on a few other projects. I did finish Frosty Friends, which I have finished off as a pin-keep...this is my first time attempting one. I do need to put on a ribbon or something, just incase the person receiving this wants to hang it. I am planning to give this one to my grandmother, who might be coming to North Carolina when I am there (when Older Son plays in National Hockey tournament). I stitched the Frosty Friends ornament with her in mind. The pattern does call for the lime green coloring of the hat...which reminded me of the Gecko Green VW Bug that my grandmother would love to have (but was denied...for my uncle didn't think that a 90 year old woman needed to drive around in the Bug). The pattern also called for the bird to be stitched in blue (blue birds are a symbol of friendship). However, I decided to make it a red represent my grandfather, her husband, who past away on December 24th. My grandparents lived in St. Louis, Mo for a long time and the Cardinals were my grandfather's favorite baseball team. So, the more I looked at this little pattern, the more I saw my grandmother and my grandfather looking at eachother. Like the little bird came down to visit. I think that it came out pretty good...finishing it up around the corners was a challenge. But I am happy with it and I hope she likes it.

The new thing that I am working on is this little pattern I found in the Freebies on DMC website (I think). I am doing it on 32ct evenweave - 1 over 1. Very, very tiny! It says "Wish. Dream. Hope. Believe." It has a star, moon and heart - and then a border of triangles, which are done in varigated colors. I will post more photos are I do more. It really is a challenge to do 1 over 1. I have never really done this before...very challenging! to get my family around so that I can get my family around and out the door for the hockey game.

Have a good evening!

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Reading Blogs

Visiting and reading blogs has become part of my early morning exercise routine. Sound strange? Well, it probably is - and to prove that I do this activity, I posted an embarrassing photo (which was previously posted back in December) of me...on the bike...spinning...with the laptop on the reading shelf. Getting up in the morning to spin and sweat is almost like a drug. If I can get my ol' body out of bed in the wee hours of the morning (ie 4:30am) to get in about 2 hours of movement & sweat - it usually starts my morning off in a good way.

Two hours does get boring...I do have a supply of magazines (some health related, many are stitch related-love to look at all the designs & stitches and thinking about fun project to do), some books...but having the laptop and reading blogs has become a big part of my wee hour routine. One of the first blogs that I read was The Two-Handed Stitcher by one of my favorite designers. She would write about her designs, some of the free ones you can find on her website, or a little bit about the region she lives. Another blog, which really inspired me to start writing my own was Crossed Purposes. Not only did this blogger write about the projects she was stitching, but about her daily struggles - which really drew me in. It really drew me into her life. Since November, when I became a blogger myself, I started "bookmarking" all of the blogs that drew me in because of their stitching and/or their "open door" to their life.

Now, almost everyday, when I wake up and get on this silly exercise bike, I turn on this old laptop and run through my "favorite" visit "my friends"...checking to see how everyone is doing? What project are they starting? What have they finished? Are they looking for opinions regarding thread/fabric? Are they feeling better? Did they get the job? How are the kids/grandkids? If it has been awhile since they have written, I do find myself worrying about them - are they ok? Are they taking some time for themselves, like a needed vacation?

On some blogs, I feel inclined to post a comment - an opinion - offer compliments - offer sympathies - or encouragements. Through the blogging community I have found a belonging, a fellowship and friends.

It is interesting the impact that blogging and reading blogs has affected my life. I am grateful for those who have inspired me to blog & read blogs; I am grateful for the community out there. Thank you!

And thank you for visiting and reading my blog today. Remember to Live, Love & Laugh...and to stitch often! Lisa

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Picture Posting

As promised, I have taken pictures of my progress on a couple of projects. The first is the Friendship Sampler RR. I had Michele's, who requested that we stitch with a red color scheme. She enclosed some different threads in different shades of reads. I chose Pink Azalea (by The Gentle Art) to cross-stitch the heart. I satin-stitched the little squares with Pink Quartz (Belle Soie) - never have stitched using silk floss was a treat. For my name & state, I used Noir (Belle Soie), as per her request. It was fun...I hope that Michele likes did come out slightly pink, as per the name of the colors, but it was in her package so I hope that it is ok. All I have left to do is to find a postcard representing the area I live in, write a little message and send it all off...I hope to have this done tomorrow and get it in the mail on Monday.

My other project that I am working on, as per my earlier post, is Frosty Friend. Here is my progress:

This is an ornament from the 2008 Just CrossStitch Ornament issue. I am hoping that it will be a quick stitch, because this just might be a little surprise for my grandmother who might be coming to NC to see her great-grandson play hockey. Still keeping my finger's crossed. is time to hit the hay! Good night.

A Friendship Poem

Are you tired of those sissy 'friendship' poems that always sound good,
But never actually come close to reality?
Well, here is a series of promises that actually speak oftrue friendship.
You will see no cute little smiley faces on this card
Just the stone cold truth of our great friendship.

When you are sad -- I will help you get drunk and plot revenge against the sorry bastard who made you sad.
When you are blue -- I will try to dislodge whatever is choking you.
When you smile -- I will know you are thinking of something that I would probably want to be involved in.
When you are scared -- I will rag you about it every chance I get until you're NOT.
When you are worried -- I will tell you horrible stories about how much worse it could be until you quit whining.
When you are confused -- I will try to use only little words.
When you are sick -- Stay the hell away from me until you are well again.I don't want whatever you have.
When you fall -- I will laugh at your clumsy ass, but I'll also help you up.
This is my oath.... I pledge it to the end.
"Why?" you may ask
Because you are my friend!!

Friday the 13th isn't always unlucky...thank goodness

I have not been very good about keeping up with the blog this week...after getting back from Seattle, I have been busy. With the win of Districts for Robert's hockey team, comes more work to get ready for Nationals - paperwork, registration, plane ticket reservations and booking hotel room for the team...along with other organizational things. I have also decided to go to the dr to find out if there is anything that will help get rid of this cold I have been dealing with for over a month. Now with an antibiotic and the bulk of the hockey things organized I feel that I can get on with other parts of life for a while.

Before I update you on my stitching projects, I just want to express my thanks to my lucky stars...we have had car issues for a while with both our old cars (one is a 1995 jeep, the other is a 2001 jeep) - but we are the kind of people who just tend to "run them into the ground". Well, it looks like we might have with the 2001...this morning, DH was running Robert down to an early morning hockey practice @ 5:00am, when he called because the car died on the side of the road. I jumped into the other car and we got Robert to practice and then dealt with getting the other car towed to a service center. But the thing I feel very lucky about is...the car has been making funny noises since Wednesday evening, but we just wanted to make it to the weekend when we could deal with it. Yesterday, I drove carpool (i.e. had other kids in the car) to hockey - making it down there and back (on Fri. the 13th nonetheless) without any issues. No problems until this morning.

And, while I am expressing thanks...the inheritance from my grandmother who passed away in November showed up on Wednesday. The timing was perfect, because we were just about to get a loan to buy a used car. So...with some cash in our hands...and one "toasted" car...purchasing the used car couldn't come at a better time. It is nice when the stars line up nicely.

On the Stitching Front...(I will post photos later today)
I started stitching my heart onto Michelle's Friendship Sampler for the RR I am participating in. It was a little stressful stitching it because - I stressed over getting the count right, over making sure that my crosses matched her crosses, making sure that the color combo was correct as per her directions, etc. I have finished the heart and just need to stitch my name and state by it. We are doing mailings around the 15th and 30th of each I will have it done this weekend in order to send it out by Monday. One of the extra special things that she requested is each of us enclose a postcard that represents where we live and then write something about ourselves on the back. I haven't done this yet. I live near some of the famous cities in Northern California, but not near enough to purchase a I might just print out a picture that represents the area I live in and then write on the back.

The other project I am working on is called Frosty is coming is a nice easy project; but just having made time to really sit and stitch it.

Well, I have our plane tickets purchased for North Carolina for National Championship (son's hockey) for the first weekend in April. I have emailed the NC RR girls to let them know I will somewhat close by and hoping that I might meet one of addition, I found out that my 90 year old grandmother (who lives in SC) might be driven up to join us for the hockey tournament by my cousin. I am keeping my fingers crossed. One of the things my son said when he woke up for the Districts Championship game last weekend, was: "This game is for Gi-Gi (great-grandma)". We have been talking about the possibility of making it to Nationals in North Carolina all season and thoughts of my grandmother (his great-grandmother) coming to see him play hockey. How cool will this be if she does!!!

I promise pictures soon of my stitching...hope everyone is doing well. Remember - Live, Love, Laugh and stitch often! Lisa

Saturday, March 7, 2009

Friendship Sampler RR Rec'd

So, I am in Seattle for my son's hockey tournament and one of the Friendship Sampler members lives, I called her up to see if she would be interested to save postage and handoff her sampler to me in person...and, well, I suppose you can guess what her decision was...
I met Michele this afternoon while my son was taking a nap (something that he does when he has a morning hockey game and another one in the afternoon/evening). It was fun to meet Michele and get to know her. This is a wonderful "perk" to the RR!
Thank you Michele for taking time out of your weekend to come out to the hotel and meet me...and to hand off your sampler to me. I can't wait to choose my heart and stitch it!

Well, we will be leaving for the second game today. My son & his team won their first 2 games, lost this morning...this evening is the semis and, if they win, they go to the championship tomorrow at noon. Keep your fingers crossed!

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Packed for, yet, another trip...and looking forward to it!

I have been working on Frosty Friend (the snowman posted earlier in the week)...and I was going to take a photo of it to show my progress, but just didn't get a chance today. My older son left for Seattle, flying with 2 other hockey family friends - this is the first time that he has flown without DH or I was a little out of sorts. But he called as soon as they landed - and then tonight he called to tell me that they won their first hockey game for Districts (and he had the game winning goal! How cool is that?).

After going to work today, I ran a few errands - trying to stock the house with food for DH and younger son. I also made homemade banana bread for them - and double chocolate chip muffins.

Not only am I looking forward to getting to Seattle to be with my son & his hockey team, again, this weekend; but I have an opportunity to meet someone who is in the Friendship Sampler RR I am part of.

Well, I am sorry that this is short and very sorry that I haven't posted any stitching photos or stitching life is a little crazy right now.

Hope everyone is doing well...Happy thoughts being sent out to a good friend in Minnesota and more going out to Beth - a blog friend!

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Thoughtful Tuesday

Maybe there is something going around, something more than the common cold or the Super Flu bug. But whatever it is, there are a lot of us who are coming down with it...the Big Blahs. Symptoms...tired, dazed, "out of it", loss of focus, "too much on my plate - but no time", cranky, achy.

Maybe it is being caused by the weather - too much snow in some places, too much rain in others...not enough moisture for some.

Maybe it is the economy and the financial woes out there - some loosing their job, some in fear of loosing their job, some receiving pay cuts so that they can keep their there is not enough money to pay the bills, to live as we are use to or as we would like to.

Yesterday, I came to realize that it is I who has the power to control my thoughts, my desires - influence the outcome of my day. It is I who can control my reactions to things that might come my way, whether it be good things or not so good. No, I cannot control what others do and what events take place...I cannot really control my destiny...but I can decide how I am going to react to what is dealt to me.

Yesterday, I "willed" myself to get up and get going - to start my day. Today, I was a little late out of bed (by my standards), but I, again, "willed" myself to get up and get going - to start my day. The wee hours of the morning are MINE. They help me organized my thoughts and exercise my body (I am on the stationary bike as I type this posting). It also provides me with opportunities I might not have - this morning I was able to kiss DH good bye as he left for an early flight out east; this morning I was able to read some new blogs and meet some new bloggers (and learn a little about their lives & stitching interests).

I wish everyone to find their on "will" and to make the most of every moment - whether it is in the wee hours of the morning or the wee hours of the evening...or anytime in between. Make it YOUR OWN.

Dear Readers - thank you for your time, thank you for reading. If there is something that you take from my morning's rambling - I am grateful. If there isn't anything that you can gleem from my morning's ramblings...that is a-ok too. I am just grateful that you are here today!

Remember to: Live, Love, Laugh...and stitch often! Lisa

Monday, March 2, 2009

A Lit'l bit of Happiness for Monday Morning - An Attitude Adjustment

Happiness cannot come from without. It must come from within. It is not what we see and touch or that which others do for us which makes us happy; it is that which we think and feel and do, first for the other person and then for ourselves.
~ Helen Keller
It is Monday Morning and I am up and going. I have finally been able to "will" myself to get out of bed and on the exercise bike. While I know that I haven't felt 100% since I have returned from Quebec, some of my issue with getting "up and going" was just do to my attitude. Every day, it seems, that my daily routine is boring...get up, exercise, shower, get breakfast around for the boys, make lunches for DH & boys, DH to work, boys to school...and then I go on to work. That is just my morning - the afternoons & evenings can fall within the "boring" category, too - either I have errands to run (grocery store and/or dry cleaners) in the afternoon before getting the boys from school...or there is hockey to get ready for in the evening. However, I do think that it is an attitude that I need to adjust.

So, this morning I asked myself..."What can I find to look forward to, in order to WILL myself to get out of bed." The first thing I thought of was BLOGS...I can catch up on other's blogs while I exercise on my stationary bike like I did before I went to Quebec. So - I found the bookmarked "The Big Blog of Stitching Blogs" and I started to go down the list, starting w
ith the Blogs that begin with an A and caught up on those (reading & commenting). After a while, I knew that I needed to catch up on my email correspondence with some friends and family...and get out the St. Patrick's Potato Bar Party Sign Up List for my younger son's classroom party. Now with those few things to keep my busy - one hour has just elapsed while I have been on the stationary bike - and I am feeling better. So - to keep me going, I am now up dating my Blog with the story of my attitude adjustment. I can reflect upon this when I struggle with mornings again...and maybe a reader will find inspiration in it for their life.

News on the Stitching Side of Life

I found something new, fun and small to stitch. In the Just Cross Stitch 2008 Special Christmas Issue "Christmas Ornaments" - I found "Frosty Friends" by Mosey 'N Me. I will post my progress, but thought I would post a photo of the pattern I was referring to. I was scanning my stitching magazines and this put a smile on my face. So, I did put my first few stitches in it last night.

Well, time to sign off now - either to pick up my book to read (Stealing Home by Sherryl Woods) or to do some more Blog reading.

I hope everyone finds a lit'l happiness in today. Just remember to Live, Love, Laugh and stitch often.

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Showery Sunday - Hanging at Home

Happy March. It is raining here in Northern California, something that we definitely need. When I left town for Quebec on Feb. 10, the hills around our house were still slightly brown and the trees, which loose their leaves, were still bare. When I got back on Feb. 23...the hills around here were dressed in green is like a scene out of Ireland with the green, green hills. And the trees have started to flower the pink and white flowers that come before the green & red leaves of the crab apple/cherry trees. I love this time of the year, because when the stores start stocking their Easter eggs - that is what I think of when I look around at the landscaping around my neighborhood. With the pick & white flowering trees, the purple flowering bushes and the first hints of California poppies and other is beautiful. So...the rains that we have been getting and is in the forcast for the rest of the week is needed to continue this green!

DH and younger son drove to a city outside of Sacramento for a Sunday morning hockey game. Older son and I are at home. He is missing hockey practice this morning (might go to the later one) due to the cold/flu he still is dealing with. We are trying to rest him up because he/his team is going to the District Championship in Seattle next weekend and I don't want him to get any sicker. This cold/flu is not fun. We don't feel terribly horrible, but we are all feeling like we just don't have any energy. It is a drag!

I got my Friendship Sampler RR in the mail, so it is on its way to the next stop - should be there on Tuesday or Wednesday at the latest. I have gone back to working on Shoo-fly and trying to find another little project, but just cannot decide what I want to do - yet, haven't looked hard enough through my stash. Oh, well...

Hope all is well with all reading - remember to Live, Love, Laugh and Stitch often! Lisa