Thursday, September 29, 2005


I may have to change the name of this blog as I am definitely no longer in stitching non-paradise.

I went to my first EGA meeting here yesterday. Met many wonderful and talented people. Lots happening in this chapter and even better they have both day and night meeting times.

Since arriving here I have been to exactly one stitching store - the nearest one to me. Limited stuff, but very nice people. I think it's only fair to restrict my stashing opportunities as I have not been stitching much. But I'm coming out of that and will be taking advantage of a variety of LNSs soon.

Tuesday, September 27, 2005

too sad

DH and I were switching back and forth between watching the Red Sox and Army Football last week when we learned of the death of premier Army Hockey player, Derek Hines. We had the extreme pleasure of watching Derek play his firstie (read: senior) year. We join the Army Hockey family in mourning the loss of a fine young man.

Fallen Heroes Memorial: Army 1st Lt. Derek S. Hines

Sunday, September 25, 2005

National Book Festival

Joined the vast crowds of people on the Mall in Washington D.C. yesterday. I had to go see and hear from other writers at the National Book Festival. For a companion, I had only a stalwart 16 year old boy. We first joined the crowds on that amazing conveyance that barrels along underground - the Metro. Just us and a couple thousand war protesters. I have to admire these people for the wit they displayed on their signs and t-shirts. I was particularly fond of "better sentences, not war" and "apathy - a conflict of disinterest."

My companion and I soon found seats under a large white tent listening to a young writer, Jonathan Safran Foer. I have been meaning to read his first book - "Everything is Illuminated" - will have to see if I can scare up a copy at the library.

He was followed by a still handsome though somewhat grayer than the last time I saw him - John Irving. I am well acquainted with John's life having attended the same schools. I have vivid memories of his reading to us from "the Hotel New Hampshire" - the chapter titled "sorrow floats." This man writes the last sentence of his books first, then spends month deciding how to get to the last sentence before ever writing the first sentence. Which means when finally does begin to write, he attends to his word choices quite carefully: a fact I much appreciate.

After consuming the world's largest hotdog, we next settled in to hear the wonderfully accented tones of Neil Gaiman. Another man I should read more of. He was followed by that satorially splendid, Tom Wolfe. Who gave us his version of best American fiction from Crane's "Maggie, Girl of the Streets" to "Grapes of Wrath." From his lovely vanilla ice cream white suit to his slightly long, slightly thinning hair he looks every inch the writer who is strained by contact with ordinary people. By that I mean people who are less well-dressed. Highly entertaining.

Our last writer - the one the 16 year old had come to hear - is man after all our souls here - George RR Martin. To those of you who haven't read his Song of Fire and Ice series - starting with "A Game of Thrones" - what's wrong with you? There is enough conflict and intrigue to satisfy every castle dweller. And his 4th book in this series comes out in November - a wonderfully dismal time to curl up with a cup a tea and nice long story.

After hearing Mr. Martin, we took us ourselves to the back of a very long line to meet him and get a book signed. While doing this (which took 2 hours), said 16 year old and I bided our time by calling his sister at university and teasing her because she wanted to be here. Ah, well-placed cruelty can be so much fun!

During the course of this entire day we were aware of the war protesters. The man we most admired went by shouting "make books, not bombs." At one point I found myself the only person with 70 feet of two middle-aged men of opposing views. My first instinct was rush between them and tell them to stop being idiots. Fortunately my second instinct stopped me. Their yelling finally attracted the attention of official people from the Book Festival who then encouraged them to part. There were sirens all day long and helicopters circling. We tried to go back to the Metro station but found a thousand other people had the same idea at the same time. Instead of waiting around, we walked a few blocks north to another station, which was a sea of humanity also, but not quite so bad. In between stations, we had to cross the protestors parading along Pennsylvania Avenue. Democracy in action. Lastly a bumper sticker in the Metro parking lot - "Frodo lost - Bush has the ring."

Wednesday, September 21, 2005

missed anniversary

Ah. I missed the second anniversary of my blog. I posted for the first time on September 3rd. A lot has changed in 2 years. Not going to insert laundry list here - blah, blah, blah.

but I am off to find my local EGA chapter now. I know my meetings used to be a source of material for blogging. Good inspiration. New things to learn. Etc.


just when I started stitching again, my son gave me his back-to-school cold. And it's a whopper. Can't sleep, can't breathe, massive headache.

Past 3 days have not been pretty. At least today I'm starting to see a little improvement. But now I'm so far behind on all that needs to be accomplished that I don't have time to stitch.

But I am contemplating the first stashing trip since moving to Virginia. Not that I need anything - just inspiration!

Friday, September 16, 2005

First Stitches

Since moving out my in-laws (temporary home) in July I have not picked up my needle and thread.

Till yesterday. Did 3 threads on my Goode Huswife sampler. Was too tired from painting rec room to do more. Felt good. Hopefully I've broken the dam and a whole bunch of stitching will now come pouring out.

Thursday, September 15, 2005


Good word choice. Now I'm hearing Bowling for Soup in my head...

I have almost gotten rid of all the empty boxes. Is it bad when you start making friends with the guy who works at the transfer station??? LOL I have 2 big boxes of folded paper and a short stack of flattened boxes left.

I do have a growing collection of things to freecycle or take to the thrift shop. With gas prices where they are, I need to find a local consignment store - otherwise it's 30 minutes to either military thrift shop. So far I've had great luck w/freecycle. Only one person didn't show. I've gotten rid of empty moving boxes, a portable basketball hoop, 3 oak chairs, a wine rack, 2 plate racks, and a folding banquet table. Off to post more now. Got some vintage 70s hanging lights, a box of boy's books, some craft stuff, another table. So far the only thing I can't seem to find takers for is my old blue recliner.

Tuesday, September 13, 2005

right whatever

Sorry. Got a miserable end of period headache.

Did follow through on my plan to paint yesterday. Managed to do the wall with the slider and the long wall into the dining room which necessitated moving the bookshelves and all the books, the hutch and the sideboard. Only did one coat. I'm sure a second would look better. But not sure it would be enough of an improvement to bother doing it. So I didn't. Instead I put the room back together and made dinner.

Round two tomorrow. Obviously I can not handle painting in my current condition.

I did get out a stash box last night for fondling while watching Tootsie on AMC.

Monday, September 12, 2005


We are making progress on many fronts in the new house. Got new living room furniture, but not going to get rid of any of the old which makes for fun shifting things around. Hung a new light in dining - we are all much happier now. Original fixture was an ugly, ugle 70s chandelier. I couldn't stand it. Complained so much that DH replaced with an extra ceiling mount fixture we had. Of course, he couldn't stand that. We found a "cheap" version of what we wanted at Lowe's. A four arm stained glass chandelier that is rectangular not round and has a central downlight. Arts and Crafts looking. A huge improvement!

Picked out paint colors for bedroom. One wall blue, remainder a warm beige color, kind of like latte.

But I still haven't picked up a needle and thread. I'm getting much closer as I've spending time purusing my books. And I have an old Frank Lloyd Wright window pattern that DH would love me to do.

Today it's back to the paint cans as I need to finish living/dining room. Just me, some music (oh oh - bought the Patridge Family's greatest hits...), and lots of drop cloths.

Wednesday, September 07, 2005

in the aftermath

Katrina was a natural disaster. What happened after is a human tragedy.