Thursday, January 28, 2010

L*K Exchanged received

Today when I got home from work and went to the mailbox, I found a little puffy package waiting for me from Lori...and look at the beautiful pinkeep that I found inside (Bridal Bear decided to model with the beautiful exchange):
Isn't it beautiful? The colors are so soft (she used GAST threads) and stitched wonderfully on 28ct fabric. According to a notecard Lori enclosed in the package, this was her first pinkeep she has ever made. If she didn't write that in the card, I wouldn't have been able to figure it out as it was perfectly made!
Attached to each pin was a small clear Swarovski crystal, which added a lot of sparkle and I am sure added with a lot of love. The ribbon...well, that was chosen by her youngest son and I believe that he did a wonderful job of finding the perfect ribbon - it is soft in texture and color - the perfect finish for the pinkeep.

And look what it is sitting on...a little stand. Lori spoiled me with adding this in the package. Thank you so much, I love it. I have set it on my nightstand, by my bed, where I have all my exchange treasures displayed.

Well, my friends, my weekend has begun as I am off of work tomorrow - which will give me a little "me" time while DH (is at work) and the boys (are at school) are out of the house. While housecleaning should be on the "to do list", I might just put that off for another week and make some time to stitch...good idea?
Take care and remember:
Live, Love, Laugh and Stitch often!

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

January Ornament Swap I get to show you the finish :)

I found out that my ornament I sent to Sharon for our 2010 Ornament Swap was received, so I get to share with you another finish - yahoo! I am so glad that she received it and likes it. Sharon now has 5 new ornaments to adorn her Christmas tree in 11 months (didn't we just take down the tree?).

The ornament was a design from the 2009 JCS Ornament issue. In the magazine, it was stitched all in white, but I decided to use some hand dyed fabric (I used blue food coloring and it turned a pinky/lavendar...go figure) and stitch it in a red theme. I used varigated reds as well as adding some Krenik blending filament in red. It was a fun stitch!

Looking at the calendar it is hard to believe that January is just about over. Next month both boys have a hockey two different places during the same weekend. DH will be travelling with Matthew (younger son) to Phoenix and I will be travelling with Robert (older son) to Pittsburgh. It has been a while since we all have had to travel at one time - but that is the life of our hockey family. Any readers in Pittsburgh? When I travel for these activities, it is fun to see if there are any blog friends in the cities we visit for hockey tournaments.

Well...not much else going I will end this posting for now. Hope everyone is having a good week!
Remember to Live, Love, Laugh and Stitch often! Lisa

Monday, January 25, 2010

Finally a finish to post and just a weekend update

Good day blogger friends,
I hope that you all had a good weekend. Ours here was very nice...and I will share a little of the activites in just a bit, but thought I would post a stitching photo first (YAHOO!). I saw that Lori received the L*K Rnd3 I stitched and finished for her. So without further ado, here is what I stitched:

Fabric: Pink/Maroon-ish color...something I had in my statsh
Thread...used the colors called for, but added a little JAB heart button in place of a stitched design

I saw this pattern when I was shopping in NiaH last month and, knowing that I had a L*K exchange to stitch, decided that it would be perfect for Round 3 which was so close to February. According to Lori's post on the L*K blog, her wedding anniversary is also in Feb - so my decision to go with this pattern sounds like it was a good one!

Well, that is one exchange that made it to it's new soon as Sharon shares that she received the ornament from the ornament exchange we are doing, I will post that one soon. At this time, I am still model stitching for CindyMae, who just announced that she will be published 2x this year in The Cross Stitcher magazine - August and September. I am so excited for her. When I first met her via blogging, she was creating free designs and then started working on some to sell via internet. Soon we became friends and I started to stitch some of the models for her so that she can upload photos of what the design will look like.  The design I am working on right now is called "Doggone Napping" and it is a counter part to "Cat Nap":

Again, I am so excited for her and everything she has accomplished in the short amount of time! Congratulations Cindy! that I finally had a stitching post going, I thought I would also (bore you) are a couple of photos of Robert from his tournament in Seattle over MLK weekend - this is the tournament that he and his hockey team - San Jose Jr. Sharks Bantam AAA - won.

Hockey filled our Sunday yesterday, with both boys playing games. Robert (older son, pictured above) had 2 "league" games versus the LA Jr. Kings Bantam AAA; Robert's team defeated them in both games....Way to go Sharks! And Matthew (younger son) had an evening game, which they won as well. Good outcome to a great hockey Sunday!

Hope you are having a good Monday! The boys are off of school so we are all relaxing today!
Until the next time...remember:
Live, Love, Laugh and Stitch often!

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Time to pack up the Ark and get sailing...

Mrs. Noah, busy at work...after folding the laundry and storing it on board SS Arck, she grabs her clipboard and starts to check off all the animals...
2 giraffes (male/female)
2 alligators (male/female)
2 lions (male/female)
2 zebras (male/female)
2 elephants (male/female)
2 monkeys (male/female)
With all the animals accounted for it was time to set sail, for there was another storm on the horizon..."Noah, husband, time to get off that sofa and get on board."

Ok...not very nice, I know. But by the looks of the sky, we are in for another strong storm. After 2 on Sunday, 2 yesterday and one doozy that included thunder and hail this morning...I am getting tired of all this rain. I know, it is good in preparation for the dry summer as I mentioned the other day, but one gets tired of this dark, gloomy wet weather. is great stitching weather!

Take care everyone and remember:
Live, Love, Laugh and Stitch often (even if you have to do it under the umbrella)

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Tuesday's thoughts...

My Tuesday started out very early when DH and Robert (older son) got home from the hockey tournament in Texas at 12:30am. Due to the weather in California, their plane was delayed 3.5 hours and had the stress of being stranded in Texas attached to it...but all is ok, as they did get home early this which I am grateful!!!

Robert's team managed to make it into the championship and won that game. This is their first championship win for the year. Congratulations to Robert and the San Jose Jr. Shark Bantam AAA team! which I am grateful!!!

The Winter Rain Storms are strong right now. As I am spinning on my stationary bike and updating my blog, I can hear the waves of rain hit the front window. Being somewhat near the ocean our storms literally come in waves (like the waves of an ocean). While it is a mess to get around town in, it will definitely add to our moisture and will help keep down the number of fires we could have during the summer dry which I am grateful!!!

I am sorry to report, but once again I don't have any snapshots of my stitching projects of finishes. However, I do have some news...I have totally finished my L*K Rnd 3 exchange and my January OSE (for Sharon). They have been photographed (which I will share as soon as I hear they have received them), they have been packed up, envelopes have been addressed and I should be able to put them in the mail which I am grateful!!!

Today I woke up hearing the rain on my window, not really wanting to get out of my warm bed in order to get my spin in this morning...but I did and feel really good about it. In my email inbox was the latest edition of Living Life Fully's E-Zine. I get their daily emails and then their monthly notification of the E-Zine. Sometimes I read them and delete them...sometimes I find a reading that really "hits the spot" of what is going on with me at the moment...and sometimes I find a gem that I would like to share.

In this edition of Living Life Fully, there is an article on Committment vs. Attachment. Attachment: "is a reflex, an automatic response which often may not reflect our deepest good"....Committment: "is a conscious choice, to align ourselves with our most genuine values and our sense of purpose". Anyway, if this is something that interests you, click the link: Living Life Fully's e-Zine, and have a read.

And with that I will end this post for the day. For you, my friend, I am grateful that you took time out of your day to visit. May your day be blessed with my Love, Life, Laughter and Stitching!

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Weekend update...

Hello dear friends,
The weekend has been nice and somewhat quiet so far. With DH and Robert (older son) in Texas for a hockey tournament, I have a few less people in the household to manage (LOL). Matthew does have some hockey committments this weekend, the first was a scrimmage with a team in his age division last night. Matthew's team won. It was a good game, followed by a potluck which the other team was also invited - which made for a nice evening. Today, Matthew has another game at 11:15 and then in the afternoon the team is doing Lazar Tag; which I signed up to participate in too (yes, it was open for parents and siblings...thought I would see what this game was all about).

On the stitching front, which I have not written about in a while...well, I have just about finished 2 exchanges which are due mailed by the end of the month - 2010 OSE and the L*K Rnd 3. They are stitched and prepped for the finishing I am going to give them. And since tomorrow is MLK Day (Martin Luther King Day), and there is no school (and I will be home from work), I am planning on sitting in front of the sewing machine and accomplishing those finishing touches so that I can get them in the mail next week. I have also been working on some model stitching for CindyMae - it is a really cute design which coordinates well with the Catnap pillow I did for her, but this one has a napping puppy on it. Oh, yah, if you visit her website, she has just added some wonderful Valentine designs (model stitched by April)...don't you just love how we blogging stitchers support eachother :)

So, bottomline...with most of my stitching right now exchanges or model stitching I do not have anything to show off again...and MW is feeling neglicted. I do miss Mary, but I would like to get my "committments" accomplished first so that I can dedicate my attention when stitching is not a good one to loose focus while stitching. Nothing worse than trying to frog 1 over 2...well, 1 over 1 is hard to frog...but frogging is no fun, so no stitching Mary without focus!

Oh, more out for the dreaded software virus that is going around right now. We have one laptop at home that is sick with it. I haven't done a lot of reading about it, but I have read that it has come from some of the yahoo groups and/or downloading software from some of the social communities (aka facebook). So, make sure that your antivirus programs are good...but just be careful!

Well, it is time to stop rambling on...Have a great Sunday and remember:
Live, Love, Laugh and Stitch often! Lisa

Friday, January 15, 2010

Aaaaahhhhhhh....end of a week...

It is Friday. It has been a very, very busy week. Mostly, it was due to extending my hours at work, which I am definitely not complaining about, but it is something that just changed my routine. I think that I posted some about work earlier in the week - but quickly...I have a part-time job in a global company working in the Communications & Marketing department. "My boss" is in our Duxford, UK office; she was in town this week as we were starting a new/large project regarding our company's website, so we were interviewing webdesign companies. While here, she did my performance review from 2009 (which was wonderful) and we set my 2010 targets (lots of fun and exciting things to work on!). The meetings were wonderful, the review was great and, well, basically it was so nice to have someone to talk with all day (normally everyone stays in their office/cubicle or is travelling to all the other offices and it is quiet). But I do have to say that adding that extra hour or hour and a half does change my week...basically I was going from work right to picking up the kids and I am use to having that time to myself to either catch up on some household things or just to sit and stitch. But it was wonderful having "my boss" in town.

Last night we didn't have any hockey practice to deal with, so after I got home from work I did take some time to catch up on the grocery shopping and laundry. That always makes things see better. Also, DH and Robert (older son) are leaving this morning for a hockey tournament in I used the evening to get them organized and packed up. Yes...I was the one who got most of the things done for their travels...Yes, I know that they are capable of packing their own bags...Yes, but if I don't do it when I want to do it, then they decide to pack and organize when I want to relax and then it seems like the stress level rises 100% because something is missing that I have to instead of waiting until they are ready to tackle the packing, I go ahead and just do it! If they have anything to complain about, then I can say "you should have done your own packing."

I am looking forward to this 4 day weekend (Martin Luther King weekend)...the boys have Monday off of school as it is a US holiday. So, today I will have the house to myself, as I do with my typical Fridays off and then Monday it will be Matthew (younger son) and I...until the other two come home Monday evening. So I see a lot of relaxing, stitching and hockey in our plans here at home! I hope to have some stitching stuff to show you at the end of the weekend!

Have a good day and remember....Live, Love, Laugh and Stitch Often! Lisa

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

A gift for me...and the "official" birthday boy

I don't know if you will remember, but I have been (and still am) a participant in the L*K exchange. Round 2 was due in the mail around Thanksgiving...and I did complete mine and sent it to the assigned exchange partner. Unfortunately, for whatever reason, the exchange partner hasn't acknowledged receiving what I had created & sent, nor did she send anything to me (it seems that we were eachother's partner). Because I am well aware of "risks" associated with participating in exchanges, I got over it and signed up for Round 3 - I love the people I meet through these exchanges and I love to stitch & finish & share with others. Nevertheless, an Angel Stitcher contacted me and let me know that I will not be without further ado, here is what the mailperson delivered to me yesterday:

"Life's a picnic" by Lizzie Kate
Stitched and finished as a pinkeep by my Angel Stitcher (Lisa V)
And I found the perfect place to show it off...on my little wall shelf with my fruit and vegetable dishwear. This design is so me! Watermelons...strawberries...pears...well, I live on Watermelons (as long as the grocery store has them in stock; we seem to be at a low point right now).
Thank you Lisa...while you definitely didn't have to do this, I so appreciate it and love my new addition to my kitchen shelf, where I will be able to enjoy it every day!

The Bithday Boy

Well, my oldest turned 14 years old yesterday. It is hard to believe. I still remember the day/evening that he arrived...fourteen years ago. I looked like I had swallowed a watermelon, and this is before I ate as much watermelon as I do now. After going into the dr for a check up and complaining that I was getting so big, they decided to do an ultrasound which showed that I would be delivering a baby between 9 to 12 lbs (and I am a pretty small person: 5'3" tall and pre-preg weight was 102...when I was pregnate with Robert I gained 60 pounds). So I was scheduled to be induced the next day; and after 16 hours I had a 9lb 2oz bouncing baby boy. It was one of the most incredible things that I ever experienced (until 3.5 years later when Matthew came along). I am very proud of Robert and all that he has accomplished in his 14 years. I pray that he continues to find excitement and enjoyment in life, learning and physical activity. I feel so blessed that he is in my life!
Happy Birthday Robert!

Robert (now 14years old) and Matthew (10.5 years old)

Have a great day and remember...
Lisa, Love, Laugh and Stitch often - Lisa

Sunday, January 10, 2010

A walk in the woods on Saturday

I know that many of you out there are in a deep freeze or covered with hundreds of feet of snow - so I hope that I don't upset anyone when I share with you photos and stories of our Saturday walk in the woods. Around our neighborhood, we still have some undeveloped land; one reason is because of an army base being nearby and some of this undeveloped area is used for their training drills (that area is fenced off). And some of the area has been deemed a park or a nature reserve. Anyway, wintertime in Northern California typically means cooler weather (low 30s in the morning and mid-50s in the afternoon) and rain...and lots of fog. We have been talking about taking a "fog" walk through the woods, but we didn't get outside yesterday until 9:30am and most of the fog had lifted by then. But we had a great time exploring the area... I hope that you enjoy our walk and maybe, just maybe it will give you hope that spring is on its way to you.

Our Walk in the Woods

Because of all the rain we had, the wild mushrooms were well as the moss and other fungi that grows on the ground and the trees. And the grass and floor covering was so green, you can almost say that it "hurt yours eyes". What I enjoy in a situation like this is when the grass is so green, there really is a contrast between the green of the vegetation and the brown/gray of the leafless trees.

There was a little spring or creek that had some water running. There is nothing better than listening to nature...hearing the "babbling" of a brook as it runs through its trail it has created in the woods, as well as the 
call of all the birds.

Getting out and exploring was good for the boys. Lets them get out in nature, explore the holes dug into the earth (who could live in those? our neighborhood skunk? maybe a racoon? or could it be a mountain lion?). It also provides challenges - like getting over the babbling brook without getting wet or climbing an old oak tree.

Robert and Matthew really had a good time. Matthew had made this nature walk with DH while Robert and I were at one of his hockey tournaments, so Matthew was our nature guide; and he did do a great job of leading us through the trails, pointing out some neat sights and making sure that we took the correct paths down the hills so that we could go down by the stream without breaking our necks.

Well, thank you for visiting. I hope that you enjoyed our walk - hopefully you were able to do it from the warmth of your house and you didn't get water in your shoes and chilled fingers like we did. Oh, here is one more picture in endure...Matthew and I (remember it was an early morning walk for I'm looking like I just got out of bedBlushy Girl)

Have a wonderful Sunday...until next time, remember:
Live, Love, Laugh and Stitch Often (hopefully I can do some of the later activity today)!

Friday, January 8, 2010

A clean dog, a visit to the eye doctor and a soon to be 14 year old

Today was my day off from work and it was pretty relaxing. Although I get a few things done. First up, was to take Bruno to the groomers. He is an outdoor dog. Our house has a nice set up, for Bruno has an indoor place inside our garage where he sleeps and eats and then there is a door to the backyard where he does his...."thing". We take him out for walks/runs, but haven't let him into the house since we moved here because he is a big dog and has a tendency to chew things. But, as the vet always says when we visit, "My, Bruno, you are a happy dog aren't you?" And I think he is. Next week he gets to see the vet to get his yearly check up and rabies shot.

Yesterday, Robert (older son) and I went to get our eyes checked by the eye doctor. I do this once a year, as I am very near-sighted and my eyes seem to continue to get worse (but I did find out that they haven't changed in the last year, which is a good thing!). However, we found out that Robert was slightly near-sighted so it was time to get him glasses, which he will only have to wear to see the whiteboard (remember when it was a blackboard or referred to as the chalkboard?). Poor kid, I guess he got my "eye genes", for when I was in 8th grade my eyes started to change and I got my first pair of glasses. After his exam, he tried on several designs of glasses and settled on a pair that he like and feels that he will be able to put on in school without feeling to embarrassed (I took a photo with my camera in the store...I think he looks "smart" in those, don't you).

And speaking of Robert, his birthday is Monday...and he will turn 14. Fourteen years old...OMG! It is hard to believe that I will be a mother of a 14 year old. I am sure that I will post a memory of the day he was born as I always get sappy on the birthdays of my sons!

On the stitching side of my life, I did take some time to stitch on a L*K exchange today, but don't have anything that I am able to show you...I am sorry, but know that you will understand.

Well...time to get the boys ready for bed. Tomorrow Matthew (younger son) had a hockey game in the early afternoon. So I bid you "good-night" and remember...Live, Love, Laugh and Stitch often! Lisa

Thursday, January 7, 2010

The week is marching by and my weekend starts now.

Wow, what a first week in 2010. On one hand, I don't remember what I did or didn't do; on the other hand I feel like I have been going...going....going. We went back to our "normal" routine which includes school for the boys, work for DH and I; and the hockey practices Monday-Wednesday. I have been doing just "ok" with some of my goals...I have been ingesting less sugar (haven't totally omitted sugar gum or a little candy yet) and doing my situps/pushups/weights, which has been a focus of mine this week. Little baby steps to change a life style is my motto.

At work, which is something I don't talk about much, I have been getting ready for my boss to visit next week. Strange as it sounds my boss is located in our Duxford England office. We basically communicate by primarily email. I am looking forward to her visit as we are getting ready to start some very fun and exciting projects. In fact, today I was ask to present information about our Website redesign project to our upper manager via a conference call...and I was nervous. Ten years ago in a previous job, which was at a party store company, I was in public relations/marketing/advertising and my main responsibilty was the PR part of it...I would fly to different states where we had stores and get on local tv talk shows and talked about "how to plan parties", or "how to uniquely wrap Christmas presents", or showed the trendy Halloween costumes. You would think that talking to a speaker phone wouldn't be nerve wracking for someone who use to do tv talkshows...but my stomache was tied up in knots. But it was fun and I think I did a good job - so I feel good and honored that they would let me do something like this.

So, here we are at Thursday...I will be leaving in a few minutes to pick up the boys from school and we are heading to the eye dr. Time for me to get a check up and there is a need for Robert to get checked out as a note from school said that he doesn't see very well.

Until next time, remember...
Live, Love, Laugh and Stitch often! Lisa

Monday, January 4, 2010

MW update and hockey photos

I wanted to quickly post a photo of an update of MW (as promised) but, please note, I didn't get as far as I had hoped before posting an update. Yesterday I spent the morning taking down the Christmas decorations and tree and vacuuming up the needles from the old fake tree, the afternoon at Matthew's championship hockey game (which they, unfortunately lost in 3 OTs) and just getting ready for the end of the holiday break (the boys started school today and I went back to work). But here is MW...

It is coming along...but didn't get as much done as I wanted over the weekend. I have started some exchange stitching projects and also had the hockey tournament. And speaking of tournament, I thought I would share some photos we purchased and scanned in...

Here is Matthew (younger son) - various photos from the Winter Classic Tournament in San Jose, CA

And the best is a 2-photo series where Matthew was working hard to take the puck away from the opposing team by lifting his stick away from the puck...and the one below it shows Matthew successful in stealing the puck away, turning to try and stuff the puck in the net. Unfortunately, the goalie (whose family is good friends of ours) stopped it.

We are definitely proud of Matthew, for he really worked his tail off the whole tournament! Actually the whole team played very well...nevertheless, after the 3 Overtimes in the championship game, they lost. Oh well...there is alway another game and another tournament!

Have a good week everyone and remember...
Live, Love, Laugh and Stitch often! Lisa

Saturday, January 2, 2010

Happy New Year (one day late)

Happy New Year to all. I hope that everyone was able to celebrate the end of 2009 and the beginning of 2010 in some fashion. Ours was a very quiet one, for we are in the middle of another hockey tournament, so we had just come back from Matthew's (younger son) hockey game Thursday late afternoon, had a little dinner, played a little family game, enjoyed our 9pm (celebrated the New Year on the East Coast) and then stared the bed time routine. I think that we all were in bed around 10:30pm.

As the saying goes...
Place Setting
Hammock 1
Hockey 1
And that is about all we have done since December 27th...some days we even repeated that list a second time if there were 2 games or 2 hockey events in one day. But there are worse things in life that we could be doing.

2010 Goals and Projects
I haven't had much of a chance to read many blogs lately, but those I have read have started posting their goals and projects for 2010. One of my main goal (which unfortunately at the rink yesterday I broke) is to cut my sugar consumption down and eventually cut it out all together. What I am referring to is the large amount of candy and sugared gum I consume, especially when I am sitting around at the rink or at work. It is in those kinds of solutions where I am either "bored" or "focus" and just need something for my mouth to do - like chew. Unfortunately sugarless gums contain a faux sweetner called sorbitol, which I seem to be sensitive to and causes a lot of discomfort after I chew several pieces of gum. There have been many studies in health magazines, which say chewing gum can help you think or chewing a piece of gum after a meal as a dessert will help you know the meal is over and you will eat less. The problem with me is I go through a lot of bubble gum in one I need to remember "everything in moderation" is ok.

That is one goal as it pertains to eating; another related goal is to work on adding weights, sit ups and push ups to my exercise routine.

And stitching...I would like to or have signed up for:
1. Finish MW by the end of the year
2. 2010 Ornament Exchange/Swap
3. Keep exchange signs up managable - continue with L*K
4. Finish Friendship RR - stitching on the remaining RRs and then as soon as mine gets back, finish it!
5. Continue to model stitch for CindyMae
I think those are nice simple goals to have - I am sure that I will have other projects that come up over the course of the year, but these are the ones that I would like to focus on!

I know that there should be other "life style" goals I should have that would cover family (extended and nuclear), financial goals and marriage. To cover all of those, I think stop procrastinating would definitely help in all facets of life.

In Closing...
I though I would add that above sub-title so those who skimmed the above, knew when I was getting ready to finish this post :) I have been working on MW when I allow myself to sit. I have finished another motif and started on another. I am planning to finish it and then post another photo Sunday as a closing to the week and the holiday break. I have 2 exchanges to get done and send out before the end of the month - one is the 2010 OSE (aka Ornament Swap Exchange) and the other is Round 3 of L*K. I also received a new pattern from CindyMae, which I am looking forward to stitching. It is a counterpart to "Catnap" those who are dog people stay tuned!

Have a great Saturday! Take care and remember...
Live, Love, Laugh and Stitch Often! Lisa