Sunday, January 26, 2014

Sunday's Random Snappers...

Good morning and happy Sunday. I'm up early this morning to make the cinnamon rolls for the boys, for they have an early hockey practice.

There has been a lot of hype around our rink lately because one of the Olympic figure skating hopefuls skates there...
The administration at the rink, as well as the public down in San Jose, CA has embraced their 15-year old Olympian. We have seen her skate down there over the years, practicing in the wee hours of the morning when we have had early hockey practices as well as in the afternoons. Her mother also works with some of the little figure skaters...warming them up in the hallways and showing them how to stretch out before and after they skate. Polina also goes to a school where some of both Robert & Matthew's teammates go. We are definitely rooting for Polina to do well.


I guess it is natural for a mother of a "now 18 year old" to go through old photos and reminisce about times when said-18-year-old was a little guy. It is just amazing how quickly they grow up. But I am not the only one, for it looks like my mother-in-law has been doing the same thing. In Robert's birthday card, my MIL sent this photo:
When Robert was about 8 months old, we took a trip to Colorado where we met up with my in-laws. For the first part of this summer vacation we stayed in South Fork, which is in the southern part of the state. We would fish, hike, rest and visit. The last part of the trip, we drove over to Durango, CO and stayed in a famous old hotel, walked up and down Main Street and enjoyed sightseeing around this area. It was here that we did the old fashion photo. It was a perfect set up - Robert in the tub, his 10-gallon hat on his head and the hankie around his neck. Oh, how I remember this photo. He was such a good natured little baby...always loved being the center of attention and getting his picture taken (my how time has changed).


It was sad the other day, when I was out taking my jog/walk. I was going up hill around all the new developments in our area and I spied this...
A lonely Hello Kitty, sitting all a lone on the sign. Her owner missing. Where o'where could her owner be? Why o'why was she left there to chill in the night air and the cool-damp morning?


Well, my friends...the sun still hasn't shown its warm face yet. The boys, who just finished eating their breakfast, are taking a shower before we leave for hockey (shower before hockey, a little strange if I do say so my self). 

Enough rambling for a morning. Thank you for visiting today. I hope that it is a wonderful day for you and yours. Until next time, take care and remember...

Live, Love, Laugh and Stitch Often!

Thursday, January 23, 2014


Creativity comes form the spiritual realm, the collective consciousness. And the mind is in a different realm than the molecules of the brain. The brain is a receiver, not a source. 
~ Candace Pert

Today's meditation from talked about creativity, which I found very interesting. It asked the question...
Do you let something "happen through you" or do you try to "make it happen"?

I know I have tried both approaches. I know when I try to force things, they don't always work out like I had hoped or expected and then I am disappointed. When I relax and let things happen without force or stress, they work out. So I guess there is a lesson there...

This meditation comes at a good relation to my Torah Portion. First of all, here is where I am on stitching my portion:
Obviously I haven't had much time since to stitch on it since the last time I posted a status photo. But my mind has been in total creative thinking about how I want to make this portion stand do I want to make this mine? As one of the 1463 stitchers of this international project, we all have the option of adding a border around the hebrew words - stitching a border on the sides and the bottom. 

Since my Torah Portion is of Moses kneeling in front of the burning bush conversing with G-d, I would love to create a border that represents flames and maybe even stitch a burning bush or large flame at the bottom of the piece. So, which I still have a lot of stitching to do before I add any color or border, my mind is going 100 miles per hour thinking about a design. Does your brain ever to this? Does it keep you up at night?

To help picture what my piece might look like with a border, the organizers of the International Torah Stitch by Stitch project have started a slide show of finish pieces...they are beautiful. If you would like to see what some of the pieces look like, click on this link. They are definitely inspiring.

If you are seeking creative ideas, go out walking. 
Angels whisper to us when we go for walks.
~Raymond Inman

Well, time to get my walk/jog in this morning so maybe I can sit and stitch tonight. 
Until next time, take care and remember...

Live, Love, Laugh and Stitch Often!

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Just 2 days ago and several thousand miles away

It is hard to believe that only 2 days ago I was here...

a land filled with blinding white snow, chilly polar air; a place where mittens, hats, coats and boots are a MUST.

A place where the frozen land begs for you to come skate until your nose hairs freeze and you can't feel your fingers and toes.

And today...

I enjoyed the warmth of the sun on my face as I took my morning 10.5 mile jog/walk. The poppies greeted me with their colorful faces as I ran by.

I probably shouldn't have, but I called my parents back in Minnesota to brag about the 70 degree temps, the blue sky and the fact that there was no snow on the ground. Yes, I know it was very mean :)

Well, time to sign off. Until next time, take care and remember...
Live, Love, Laugh and Stitch often!

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Home...where it is sunny, warm and no white stuff on the ground

It was a great weekend in Minnesota...although, it is nice to be home where the temperatures are well above freezing and there is none of that white stuff on the ground :)

Well, Matthew's team didn't make it to the Semi-Finals as they lost their last round robin game on Sunday night. It was a heart breaker loss. They were tied all the way to the last minute of the game and then the other team scored. Matthew's team needed to win or tie in order to advance to the semis on Monday. Oh, well..."ya win some, ya lose some".

Since we didn't have a game on Monday, we planned for the team to do a little outdoor skating on a pond...something that you don't get to do in California. It was a little chilly...dropped from 12 degrees when they started skating around noon, to 6 degrees when they finished up, which was around 2:45pm. It was nice that the facility had a beautiful warming house, for the boys would skate for a while...until they couldn't feel their fingers...or cheeks...or ears...or toes and then they would come in and warm up....and then go back out.
Matthew's team skating on a pond in Minnesota. 
Us, hockey moms, tried to bundle up as much as we could in order to watch the boys skate...but some of us just didn't prepare for the polar chill in the air.
My hockeymom friend, Rynette, and I outside the warming house. It was COLD!
My sister Jamie brought my niece and nephews to the outdoor rink to skate with Matthew and his hockey team because they didn't have school as it was MLK break.
Cousins - Sammy (age 8) and Matthew (age 14) out skating together
Cousins - Lizzie (age 11) and Matthew (age 14) warming up in the warming house
By the is a photo of Cousin Lizzie and my son Matthew from a long time ago... My, how they are growing up!
Cousins - Lizzie and Matthew from many years ago.
It was a great weekend. Always good to spend time with my family!

Well, time to get caught up on the laundry and a few of the house hold chores. Until next time, take care and remember..

Live, Love, Laugh and Stitch Often!

Saturday, January 18, 2014

Traveling to Minnesota for Hockey = time with family!

Anytime one of my sons have a tournament in Minnesota, you know I am on the plane with them. It is a great opportunity to visit with my parents, sisters, brother-in-law and niece/nephews. Since Matthew's team didn't have a game until 5pm today, we decided to plan the Team Lunch at my parents country club. This is something that I started last year with my older son's hockey team and it has been well received.

The venue always provides a great relaxing meal with pretty good food...and a wonderful opportunity for my family to meet the hockey players, the coach(es) and the hockey families that I hang out with in California. And we had some great photo ops!

The tall kid is my son front left to right - Jacob, Cousin Lizzie and Cousin Sammy
Matthew with Cousin Sammy
Left to Right: Aunt Jamie, Aunt Debbie, Son Matthew, Uncle Theo, Grandma and Grandpa
The Sisters
Left to Right: Jamie, Me and Debbie
Matthew's hockey team posing with his cousins
It was a nice time had by all! But now is nap time; so until next time, take care and remember...

Live, Love, Laugh and Stitch often!

Friday, January 17, 2014

A restful end to a crazy week

Hello from the tundra...otherwise know as Minnesota.
Looking at the backyard of my parents' house
I am at The Dolginow's B&B - my parents' house - the place I go when we travel to Minnesota for a hockey tournament for my younger son, Matthew. The team gets to stay at the hotel and I seek refuge at my folks house...a little pampering goes a long way :)

It has been a very, very crazy and stressful week. Started off on Sunday, when my older son Robert got back from a hockey weekend in LA with a hurt knee. Monday it was a trip to an orthopedic doctor where we had xrays done, was told that it was either a Grade 1 or 2 sprain of the MCL, which we ffollowed up by an MRI on Wednesday morning at 7am so we would know for sure. During this 3 day period, we struggled making an decision whether or not Robert would join his hockey team as they flew to Michigan this weekend for another hockey weekend. On top of that stress...Robert had to finish up 5 prep-school applications (college apps are a piece of cake compared to prep school ones!).

Well, long-story-short...we made the decision before we got the final MRI reports...we erred on the conservative side of things and decided it would be best for Robert to stay home - to go to school Thursday & Friday, to rest up his knee and start a little rehab to get it healthy, to prepare for semester finals which are next week; as well as get caught up on sleep.

Last night I received a phone call from the Orthopedic Dr office with the finding of the MRI. Robert has a Grade 2 sprain and a bruised we definitely made the right decision for him to stay home and rest up.

So the timing of Matthew's (younger son) hockey tournament in Minnesota comes at a great time...I get to do a little R&R.

While on the flight last night, I was able to put some stitches in my Torah Portion:
I restitched the last word on the first line: פִּיךָ and on the airplane I stitched this word: וְהוֹרֵיתִיךָ  which means and I will instruct you

After that was stitched I watched a movie - The Butler, which was very good - and then fell asleep for a little bit. is time to get ready to go to the hockey rink, to get my team checked in before they play their first game.

Until next time...take care and remember...
Live, Love, Laugh and Stitch Often!

Saturday, January 11, 2014

Where did time go (Part II)...and...The Frogs Go Marching :(

18 years ago today, my DH and I loaded my suitcase into the car and we drove to the hospital. At 7am, the nurse injected the meds to start my labor. Throughout the day, my parents, sisters, friends all came to visit. In the afternoon, I was given some painkillers and then in the early evening I demanded the epidural.

16.5 hours later at 11:37pm, Robert made his appearance...all 9 pounds 2 oz. It was an incredible experience! One of the most remarkable experience I have ever had.
Robert was such a good baby. He basically slept through the night; although I did wake him ever so often to feed him.
 He was always so curious and observant...looking around, listening to endless Dr. Seuss books...
 He went every where with us...was a great traveller from an early age...and definitely a great snuggler.
 Full of life...always smiling!

Robert is growing up to be such a handsome man...busy with school, hockey, track...filling out all of those college applications as we prepare for the next chapter of his life

I am definitely a proud mom of this wonderful young man!
Happy 18th Birthday, Robert!

Yesterday I spoke about my torah portion - finishing the first line and it not being centered correctly. Like I mentioned, I thought that I started the first line at the point it describes on the Torah Stitch by Stitch website. Well, I didn't quite count from the exact point I should, yes, my portion isn't centered like it should. 

So last night I emailed the contact person and got a response back this morning with several different options. None of which mentioned ripping the whole thing up and starting over...Thank Goodness!!! One of the options I have is to continue stitching and when it comes to the border (stitching a border is completely optional and gives the stitcher a way to be creative, to make it unique, etc) I will have to make a narrow one...1-3 stitches wide versus a 5 stitch wide band. It will make more sense when I get that far.

In the meantime, since I emailed a photo to the contact so that they could take a look at what I was describing, the spotted an error. The last hebrew word I stitched wasn't in the correct place, so the frogs ( צפרדע) came to visit my house after all. 

You can still see the faint hebrew word that was frogged. I hope that when I restitch it, you won't be able to see where it once was.

Anyway, in order to get unstressed after dealing with my Torah portion, I took out Seven Pines by LHN and put in a few X's and a button...
I still have a few more X's to add around the pine trees...but another LHN project was calling my name. Out came Monthly Samplers-April by LHN (sorry about all the wrinkles)...

Now destressed, it is just about time to call it a night. Thank you all for visiting. Until next time, take care and remember...

Live, Love, Laugh and Stitch often!

Friday, January 10, 2014

Flashback Friday...where did the time go? (Part I)

One upon a time, 18 years ago...with an additional 65 pounds on my body, 39 weeks pregnant (or so) and feeling HUGE like a beached whale...I went to my weekly doctor visit. It was time for an ultrasound to check-in on the life that was growing within me.

I watch the image the "popped" up on the monitor in the examination room. Long legs, arms and head...the sound of a heart beat steadily thumping...I looked at the technician and then glanced at the doctor. Frowns appeared on their foreheads, but it wasn't really concern that anything was wrong.

The doctor looked at me and said, "Well, given the measurements we are getting from the ultrasound it looks like junior is somewhere between 9-12 pounds."

Gasp! was my reaction..."9-12 way...not in my little is time to get the 'thing' out!"

Before my DH and I left the office, all the arrangements were made for Jan. 11, 1996. Reservations at Casa de la hospital, inducement drugs at 7am followed by personal attendants to take care of my every whim. I was excited and nervous all at the same time.
(Part II Tomorrow)

On another note...I finished the first line of my Torah Portion...
Torah Portion - Exodus 4:12-15
International Torah Stitch By Stitch Project
Above is the stitched line, below is the graph of the whole portion
Since the last post, the words I have stitched are: אֶהְיֶה עִם פִּיךָ...which basically translate into something like: I will be with your mouth. G-d is speaking to Moses, asking him to go to Pharaoh and ask him to let the Israelites go. Moses, according to some of the commentaries, has a speaking impediment; so, G-d reassures him that he will help him speak. 

I took the photo above and sent it to the lady who is working on this big, major project because I am concerned that I didn't start it totally correctly. It seems that the margin on the left hand side is too small...the letters are too close to the end of the fabric compared to the right hand side. However, I did follow the instructions listed on the website. It fits just fine, but it is not totally centered. I don't know...I guess I tend to be somewhat of a perfectionist. I want it to be totally correct. I did go through and make sure that all the hebrew letters were stitched correctly and the spaces were correct. All that checked out. Maybe I am just stressing over nothing...what do you think? 

Well, that is about it from here. Hope everyone is keeping warm and well. Until next time, take care and remember...

Live, Love, Laugh and Stitch Often

Saturday, January 4, 2014

Simplicity on Saturday

Hello from Los is a hockey weekend for my younger son. We drove down yesterday, leaving the house around 9am and arriving at the hotel in Long Beach around 2:30pm. Perfect time for the drive as we missed all of the horrible traffic that LA is known for.

It is nice to get away for a weekend. It is nice to spend time with my younger son, Matthew. Most of the hockey travel now-a-days tends to be "team travel"...which means that the boys travel with their team, room with their teammates and eat all together. However, travel down to LA for Matthew is "family travel", so I get an opportunity to spend time with him.

This time together seems to get less and less as the boys get older, so any time that I have with them one-on-one is priceless!!!!!

What on the itinerary for today? Well...EAT...SLEEP...HOCKEY and repeat. Matthew has a game this morning and one this evening, followed by one more tomorrow morning before we drive back home.

All is good...I wouldn't trade it for the world.

Until next time...take care and remember,

Live, Love, Laugh and Stitch Often!

I was regretting the past and fearing the future.
Suddenly God was speaking.  "My name is 'I Am.'"
I waited.  God continued.
"When you live in the past, with its mistakes and regrets,
it is hard.  I am not there.  My name is not 'I was.' 
"When you live in the future, with its problems and fears,
it is hard.  I am not there.  My name is not 'I will be.' 
"When you live in this moment, it is not hard.
I am here.  My name is 'I Am.'" 
~Helen Mellicost 

Thursday, January 2, 2014

Thursday's thoughts and stitching updates

Happy New Year everyone. I know that I am a day late from the official beginning of the year. But I enjoyed day 1 of 2014 by sleeping in until 8:30am (which I haven't done in a very long time), then went out for a 12-mile jog which was followed up by washing out my garage. It was a very productive day to say the least. I even got in a nice nap before dinner. :)

All the boys slept in too - Matthew (younger son) vegged out in front of the computer, playing games most of the day while Robert (older son) has been busy...filling out college applications, writing all the essays they require as well as getting his winter vacation homework completed before starting back at school next Monday (Jan. 6). Doesn't sound like a fun thing to do during one's break from school, but it has to be done. He has submitted all of his college applications, so at least that is checked off his list of "to do's" during break.

Anyway...after dinner last night, I settled in "my spot" on the couch to watch The Lord of the Rings marathon and took out my stitching. On My Torah portion, I got another word stitched:
Torah Portion - Exodus 4:12-15
International Torah Stitch By Stitch Project
The word is stitched is:  וְאָנֹכִי -which means "And I". Not too exciting...but stitching little by little on this.

I also got more X's put into Little House Needleworks "Seven Pines".
"Seven Pines"
Complimentary design from Little House Needlework

Unfortunately, after I finished stitching the Ecru border, I noticed that I made a mistake on top. Too lazy to "frog" the stitches and fix it, I have a plan...which I will unveil later as I finish this up. Anyway, this is a fun little project to stitch.

I have been reading through most of the New Year's blog posts, reading about what everyone is planning to do in 2014. It sounds like many of you are NOT making resolutions, as resolutions tend to fall by the wayside mid-year. I, too, am not planning on making any resolutions. However, yesterday there was a reading/meditation from in my email inbox which really got me thinking. Let me share it with you...

The Quotation:
We spend January 1 walking through our lives, room by room, drawing up a list of work to be done, cracks to be patched. Maybe this year, to balance the list, we ought to walk through the rooms of our lives...not looking for flaws, but for potential.  ~Ellen Goodman
Followed by the meditation that talked about taking a look at ourselves - not at our flaws, not at things that we feel we must "fix" - but take time focusing on the things that we do well and would like to get better at...what kind of potential might we create for ourselves? What kinds of things might we do and how might we be able to help others even more by strengthening our gifts, the things that make each of us unique? What does it mean to be you..."to just be yourself"?

So, for this New Year - 2014 - I want to focus on developing my gifts and strengths...and as I do, I believe that my flaws and shortcoming will fade.

So what do I do best? I am detail oriented. I enjoy crafting, especially cross stitch. I am a good mother and a good wife. I enjoy exercising, feeling my body move. 

How much time can I spend developing these gifts? Daily and I will feel grateful for the ability to do these activities and feel good about myself. These are my strengths...this is what makes me me.

This is not to say that I am perfect and I have nothing to fix; but it is important to remember that I (and you, too) are skilled, have specific gifts that makes us who we are!

Well, enough rambling for today. Until next time, take care and remember...

Live, Love, Laugh and Stitch Often!