Thursday, January 22, 2015

Post 8, 2015 - Catching Up

Wow...sorry for the little hiatus. Life has a way of getting in the way of the best laid plans...but it has been good things. Here are some little snippets of life here:

January 11, 2015
My older son turned 19 - WOW! Where does time go. Hard to believe that I have a 19 year old. But it was a bitter sweet celebration this year.

It has been tradition to have a celebration at breakfast time - the birthday person would wear the traditional Birthday Hat, we would sing Happy Birthday and Birthday person would blow out a candle in their toasted waffle. But said birthday boy was 3000 miles away on the east coast of USA at prep school :(

But to make sure Robert had something to put a candle on, I ordered a chocolate cake from Harry & David.
So Sunday night, he brought out the cake and his housemates sang "Happy Birthday" to him. I guess, the days of celebrating a birthday all together will [almost] be a thing of the past.

January 13, 2015
My DH and I are knee deep into Valentine's Day planning for both our Edible Arrangement Stores. This is our biggest holiday, so it is important to make sure that we cover all basis. I took a trip up to our Brentwood store to converse with our employees up there, as I typically go up to this store to help out during holidays (DH stays at our other store, which is close to our house). 
It is always fun to visit our Fruit Experts up in Brentwood and touch base with them. They had the lobby decorated for Valentines, showing off some of our new boxes which will contain hand-dipped chocolate covered strawberries...

January 15-19, 2015
Hockey tournament in Minnesota with Matthew's hockey team. 
My son Matthew (the one seated in the window seat) on the airplane with his teammates
It is always nice to have a hockey tournament in Minnesota, because I then get to visit with my parents, sisters and their family. 
We have created a tradition over the last few years, where my parents host a team meal at their country club. It proves to be a wonderful evening for all.
Matthew with his cousins: Lizzie and Sammy

Matthew with Grandma/pa and cousins

My whole family (sisters, spouses, kids, my parents, Matthew and I)

And of course, if you are taking photos at an event like this, you need to get a team photo...

It was a nice weekend. The team won 4, lost 1...made it to the semis, but unfortunately lost in the last 10 seconds. 

While the team stayed in a hotel, I stayed at my parents house which allowed me to visit with my family when we were not at the hockey rink.
Me and my nephew, Sam, at his hockey game

Although that didn't stop me from going to watch others play hockey. My nephew, Sammy, just started to play. So of course I couldn't miss the opportunity to catch one of his games. There is a big difference between watching his Mini-Mite game and watching Matthew's Midget Minor :)

In addition to watching Sammy's hockey game, I also got to hang out with my niece Lizzie. As an aunt who isn't around much, I did feel the need to totally corrupt her. In fact, we picked her up from school early on the Friday I was there so she played hooky with me.

And, also, I felt the need to teach her how to eat Ready Whip from a can:
All good things a good Aunt should teach a teenage niece - right?

Well that should basically catch you up on my life. But just a couple of things to show to finish off this post. 

First, here is the status of SamSarah In My Garden -

And lastly, while in Minnesota I got to go to my favorite stitching store: Stitchville USA and picked up a little stash...

Which I felt that I just couldn't live with out...LOL!

Well, if you made it down to here, I thank you. This is one long post. 
Until next time, take care and remember...
Live, Love, Laugh and Stitch Often!

Friday, January 9, 2015

Post 7, 2015 - TGIF!!!

Time to do a "Happy Dance!"
Yipee - Skippee!

Here is why

D - E - L - I - V - E - R - E - D

My Torah Portion has reached it's destination -
it has been delivered and signed for! 
Such a relief! 
Now the organizers of this great international project will proof-read my stitching and if it all is correct, they will scan it and upload it to the website for all to see. Once every few months they create a slide show, which they post on the website, of all the new arrivals. As soon as mine is there, I will let you all know.

Another fun delivery was made today...not to me, but to...
Harry and David Birthday Cake
Robert (my older son) who turns 19 on Sunday, January 11. 
Since he is back at school several 1000 miles away, I wanted to make sure that he had a birthday cake to celebrate with. This will be the first year that we won't be able to celebrate as a family; but I am sure between the dorm-house of boys, his classmates and his hockey team, there will be some celebrating going on!

Over the last few days I did manage to put some X's into SamSarah's In My Garden. Just enough to finish the 1st border I was working on.

Now it is time to move on to the flower inside the square. It looks like it might be a quiet weekend...and Matthew (younger son) and my DH have started playing a new XBox I should be able to find some adequate stitching time.

Well, time to sign off. Hope you all are enjoying your Friday. 
Until next time, take care and remember...
Live, Love, Laugh and Stitch Often!

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Post 6, 2015 - "Hump Day"

Here we are, the first "Hump Day" of 2015. As my morning routine has been for the last few days, I have started by checking "where in the world my Torah Portion is?" When I click on the link of the USP tracking number, here is what I get today:

I guess it is getting closer for it is finally and officially out of California now. Still showing estimated delivery date of Friday 1/9.

Didn't get much stitching done yesterday, even though I sat at the rink for a few hours. Matthew's (younger son) hockey team has a tournament in Minnesota next weekend, so as the team manager I was busy finalizing some of the plans last night with some of the parents who will be traveling to the frozen tundra with the team. The team participated in this same tournament last year, during the coldest/snowiest winter on record. It seems that the temps are quite chilly again; so we have decided that renting a bus to transport the team around Minnesota next weekend would be the best choice. Could you imagine California bred parents having to deal with scraping ice or snow off their cars early in the morning to get the kids to their first hockey game at 7am? I can't.

Well, that is about it here. Time to bundle up and go for my morning walk (it is just 37 degrees here). Until next time, take care and remember...

Live, Laugh, Love, and Stitch Often!

Monday, January 5, 2015

Day 5, 2015 - Back to reality

Today it was back to school for Matthew (younger son) and back to "routine" for my DH and I. It felt really strange to be getting up at 6:15am and making school lunch again. I feel like we all were on holiday vacation, even though DH and I worked a lot in our stores during the boys' holiday vacation.

Nevertheless, it felt good to get back to the "routine". It means that I have the morning to myself, which is the time I can get outdoors for a run or a walk or a combination of a run/walk. Living in Northern California allows one to be outdoors even during this time of the year. The mornings have been cool though - getting down near 32 degrees - but I cannot complain when my family all lives back in Minnesota where it is very, very chilly :)

I was able to get in some more X's on SamSarah In My Garden...

Mullied Berries portion complete; just finishing up the Frog Legs on the corners; then it will be time to stitch the flower which is inside of this square.

Well, that is about all from here. Hope your week is off to a good start. Until next time, take care and remember...

Live, Love, Laugh and Stitch Often!

Sunday, January 4, 2015

Day 4, 2015 - "Empty Nest" weekend

Thank you all for soothing my anxieties about sending the Torah portion. I know that I have nothing to worry about...and since it was sent by UPS International, I can track it :)

Well, Saturday started off really early (alarm going off at 3:30am) so we could take Robert (older son) to the airport to catch his 6am flight back to the east coast for prep school. It is sad to see him go, but exciting all the same. He really is enjoying his school and hockey year and life in the New England area of the US.

With Robert on his way back to New Hampshire and Matthew (younger son) in LA, my DH and I find ourselves "empty nesters" this weekend until 6pm tonight (Sunday). 

It is strange to have the house to ourselves and to worry about only ourselves. It is like it was "back in the early years" of our marriage - BC "Before Children". Strange how the cycle of life works. 

Most of our day was filled with napping, as waking up at 3:30am can play havoc on one's old body. But we did fire up the Netflix on the big screen tv and watch some interesting movies, like: 

  • Mud - Matthew McConaughey and Reece Witherspoon. It was kind of a love, tragedy type of movie.
  • Our Idiot Brother - Shirley Knight and Paul Rudd. Strangely entertaining movie of a very messed up family.
  • Pulp Fiction - John Travolta and Samuel L Jackson. Can't go wrong with a Quentin Tarantino movie. Dialogue is always great.
I was able to put some X's in SamSarah's In My Garden...
Trying to get the border of this first square completed, which is stitched with Mullied Berries and Frog Legs. It is always fun to see how the variegated subtle color changes lay as you stitch, don't you agree? 

When you stitch with such fibers, do you try to control how the color changes come out on your stitched piece or do you just stitch?  

Well, my blogging friends, it is time for me to go and see what this day holds for me. Until next time, take care and remember...

Live, Love, Laugh and Stitch Often!

We cannot live only for ourselves. 
A thousand fibers connect us with our fellow men and women; 
and among those fibers, as sympathetic threads, our actions run as causes, 
and they come back to us as effects. 
~ Herman Melville

Friday, January 2, 2015

Day 2, 2015 - Little Anxiety Attack

I finally carefully wrapped up the stitched Torah Portion, packaged it up in a shipping tube and sent it off to Toronto Canada this morning...and while at the shipping store, I could feel my heart go pitter-patter in my chest and my stomach doing flip-flops. There is something about sending off a stitched piece - wondering if it will get there safely. Do any of you out there get that anxious feeling too?

I have a tracking number in hand, but that will not suffice my worries; only when I hear from the receiving party that they have it safely in hand will I feel better. :)

As part of the project, I have written up a little narrative about myself to send with it. From my understanding, after they put together all the portions in a wonderful scroll-like display, a documentary of sorts will be created highlighting the thousand of stitchers who worked on all the portions.

My narrative I sent along with my finished Torah Portion to be included in the information about all the stitchers who have participated in this international project.

Tonight we are planning to grill a couple of steaks and chops; thought it would be nice to have a little family dinner before Robert (older son) goes back to prep school. He leaves at 6am tomorrow. We have enjoyed having him at home and it will be sad to see him go back. But he is having a great year as he prepares for college, which he will attend next year. He spent most of the vacation at home finishing up his college essays, which my DH assisted him by proofing them before he submitted them. It was kind of like a deja-vu moment. Last winter vacation, he was not only filling out college applications but was also finishing up prep school ones too.

Matthew (my younger son), who is down in LA this weekend, scored a goal in this afternoon's hockey game which was the first of five his team is playing down south this weekend. Several of the parents who drove down there to watch the team play email updates throughout the game, so we can feel like we are kind-of-like down there. Nevertheless, I do miss being in the crowd and cheering: Go Sharks! Go Matthew! They have another game later tonight.

I did get in a little stitching on SamSarah's "In My Garden", while watching one of my favorite movies, "Driving Miss Daisy"...

Until next time...take care and remember...

Live, Love, Laugh and Stitch Often!

Thursday, January 1, 2015

Day 1, 2015 - Happy New Year

Out with the old...
In with the new.

And so today starts a new year - 2015. I woke up to a beautiful day, cool and sunny, vibrant blue sky contrasted by the ever so green of the grass. The beauty of Northern California peaks around this time of the year when other parts of the nation are deep in winter. 

I took a short walk around this morning enjoying the surroundings of the neighborhood. It was quiet, except for a few others out walking, allowing me to reflect back on the last year - which I am grateful for - and ponder thoughts to the new year - which I look forward to. 

Last year, one of the large projects I accomplished was my Torah Portion for the International Torah Stitch-by-Stitch project. I have been delinquent in sending in the finished piece, but will get on that this weekend now that my DH took a photo of me with it, which I will also need to forward to the organizers of this big project.
Me and my torah portion, standing outside in our backyard, in front of the orange tree on New Year's Eve.
With the beginning of a new year, I have decided to go through my stash and pull out a project that I will work on this year. 
I found...SamSarah - "In my Garden". 
While watching some of the New Year's shows last night, I went ahead and gave it a start...

This series is filled with wonderful bright colors. It caught my eye several years ago, but it has sat in a plastic zipper pouch, all kitted up. So, 2015 it comes out and I hope to make this a finish before the year ends :)

Today, Matthew (my younger son) leaves to go to a hockey tournament in Los Angeles with his hockey team. They are taking a bus down there - just the players and the coach. Lots of male bonding will be going on in that bus, I'm sure. 
Since Robert (my older son) is home from prep school for a few more days, neither me or my DH will be traveling down to LA to watch the games. Robert is doing a post-grad year at a prep school out East. He was home for Thanksgiving and then, now, for the holidays. The time always seems to fly by when he is home...and I know that I need to make the most of this time, because one day he will be really on his own. 

I always look back at the photos when my two boys were young....

 and wonder where those two kids went.

Definitely proud of the young men they are becoming.

Well, it is time to sign off on this 1st day of 2015. 

I wish you all a very Happy New Year!
May it bring you all my health and happiness,
Love and Laughter!