Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Re: stitchy stuff

Working diligently on my ye Olde Colonial coffee house. Made a little oopsy yesterday as I wasn't really paying attention. Caught it before I'd done too much damage. But I put it down after that.

Figured out that using the steam cleaner on the stairs is a pain in the ass. And the arm. Only way to do it is using upholstery attachment. Which I think doesn't get things as clean as the using the regular floor things. But it is still an improvement. Got on flight of stairs finished and decided to leave the lower set for another day. I really should start to paint the kitchen. Need to spackle a little more and remove some grout. But the sun is shining and it might be warm enough to open a window later.

can we please

fix whatever it is that is making me sign in multiple times before I can post?

This is so annoying!

Friday, February 23, 2007

Hey I Won!

Unfortunately not the MegaMillions. But I went to our homeowner association's meeting last night and won a $50 gift certificate for the Town Center. Hmm? Restaurant money? William-Sonoma money? Appallachian Spring?

I did buy a lottery ticket earlier this week - first time in a long time - but I figured now that the baby boy is 18 I'd buy him a ticket. Maybe he needed to buy his own for beginner's luck to work?

Stitching Bloggers' Question

What is the smallest count fabric you have ever used? Did you stitch over one? Conversely, what is the largest count fabric you have ever used?

I have stitched plenty 40 ct silk gauze and 40 ct linen. Only stitched over one on the gauze. I do have some absolutely to die for 50 ct Italian linen that I did an ornie on that I bought with no idea in mind and only bought small pieces. That was over two. And I'm not sure my eyes up to the task of using the rest of it, but I'm not giving it up. It feels so luscious.

Large count fabric is yucky in my book. Largest thing I ever did was this 8 ct of a lighthouse, really simple, came with a ceramic whale charm. I have done one piece of 10 ct with perle cotton. But I didn't enjoy it.

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Ye Olde Coffe House

If you scroll down the Little House site you can see this piece here:


I have of course changed the threads to all overdyeds. And I changed the date, too, to the year my hometown was incorporated.

Contemplating how to stitch the roof of the house. I think if I work single cross stitches across the roof, it will look too stripey. So I am thinking either work across and come back to finish the cross which will give that tweedy look, or blocks of 3-4, moving diagonally down, which might give a shingled kind of look to the piece.

Good Report

My Bissel Proheat 2X steam cleaner report:

easy to set up

easy to operate

heavy, but not so cumbersome that I can't use it

my old carpet, looks new

All in all, a good investment. Cheaper than paying a company to do this. But I do have to provide all the labor. And after using 2-3 more times, it will be cheaper than renting one.

Tuesday, February 20, 2007


The Little House Needleworks Ye Olde Colonial Coffee House - or whatever its exact name is. A friend and I both bought these back at the end of December when we did a road trip to the Stitching Post in Baltimore. She has finished hers. I'm very proud of her!

We both chose to use overdyeds rather than the called for DMC. She went with a slightly brighter palette because of choosing the Fragrant Cloves color by Crescent Colours. I used that on my kitty sampler. But it's too orange for my intended placement of this piece and I chose overdyeds that more closely matched the original colors. I was going to use Q-snaps but don't have the correct size to hold the entire piece so I ended up starting this in hand.

Now it's off to discover how difficult or easy it is to operate my new steam cleaner. Here's hoping the instructions are decipherable.

Monday, February 19, 2007

boring - nothing happening

Which I suppose could be considered a good thing.

February is more than half over and I've accomplished nothing. Okay, a few little things.

I did rinse out my linen last night for the Little House coffee sampler. Which if the sunshine holds, I'll start this morning. Otherwise, I'm supposed to find someone Diddy Kong Racing for his DS and son wants to shop at Performance Bikes. He's gearing up for spring and has quite a wish list of things.

We're finally going to emergence from the deep freeze this week. Which is necessary for snow/ice removal. DH and I took a walk yesterday and were stymied by the lack of plowing in certain places. We'd start out on plowed pathway and then it wasn't. Took a much longer walk than I expected to and I was a frozen popsicle until about 8:30 last night. Took 2 cups of tea and sweater and afghan to warm me up. I'm usually the heat generator so this was painful.

Thursday, February 15, 2007

OH Baby

Today my baby boy turns 18. (insert usual ranting about where did the time go - here)

No school 'cause of leftover snow/ice. I guess plowing secondary streets just does not happen here. My development got plowed late yesterday, but the road leading in to it didn't. Went to the store to buy cat food (someone didn't tell me that he was using the last of the Fancy Feast). Only other people shopping were men buying flowers, balloons, cards, and chocolates. I gave the guy with red Twizzlers extra points for going beyond the ordinary - of course he did have flowers, a balloon and a card, too.

I'm skipping morning stitch-in this week. Just doesn't seem right to leave him alone on his birthday. (LOL - that's probably just what he wants.) And I need to shop for one more gift and food. An orange cake - what will he think of next?

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Someone was Sure

he was going to have a day off or at least a delayed start today.

Ha ha!

Jokes on him.

Snow is falling steadily in teeny, tiny flakes. Hasn't amounted to anything really yet. But it's all those warning about ice and sleet and freezing rain later that have everyone in a panic.

Me. I'm just glad some did not take a job in the lakes region of New York last year.

Made a wonderful risotto last night. That was the best Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese ever. Must go back to the store and buy more. And from here on, will only make risotto in the pressure cooker. It's so much easier.

Someone gave me a Peugot pepper grinder. What a magnificent piece of work. Don't know why these people got into pepper grinders, but hallelujah! Way too much money though. And have already said who gets it when I die (sorry, girlfriend, but the boy child is way more into cooking than you are.)

Monday, February 12, 2007

What. What.

Happy Birthday to Mr. Lincoln, Mr. Darwin and me!

Of course, I'm the only one around to enjoy it. But what the hey.

Sunday, February 11, 2007

Once More, Into the Breach

I've got this sore throaty thing going on. Living on ibuprofen. Keeping it under control. Yuck. But at least I don't have hives - see: DH.

Can't figure out what triggered them.

Thursday, February 08, 2007

just not my week

I have recovered my sanity. Tried to go buy a steam cleaner at Kohl's, but they were out of the one I wanted.

Am making lasagna for supper and thought I'd make some peanut butter fudge to send to the college kid. It's been a long time since I made fudge. Found my digital thermometer and everything. After this was taking forever, I realized that it's miscalibrated. Ugh.
I don't think I have fudge. It remains to be seem if it is edible at all.

I will most likely try again. Because I refuse to admit defeat.

Meanwhile, here's to a drink while assembling the lasagna.

3rd Finish of 2007

Before the pipe burst I was at my LNS for the a.m. stitch-in. Finished this quick little kitty project from the January Gift of Stitching mag. I changed all the fibers to overdyeds. Before I stitched the whiskers, the kitty looked kind of like Groucho Marx. I need to find fabric and finish this into a little pillow for my mom. Who swears she's getting a orange tiger cat.

So Yesterday

I walked in the house with absolutely perfect timing. I could hear water running through the pipes (the heat was not running, otherwise I would not have heard this.) Thought maybe Alex was in the shower. Went upstairs. He wasn't. Hmmm. Went downstairs. Walked into the office and heard a strange sound coming from the heating vent. I'm walking around trying to figure out what's going on. Finally zero on the fact the floor is wet near the corner of the room by the window. Run and shut main water line off - while swearing like a sailor of old. Alex and I start sopping up the water and moving things. Fortunately I must have arrived very soon after this happened.

Called DH. Who. Said. He. Was. In. A. Meeting.

Started calling plumbers. Started with the one I used last year for a clog in the main sewer line. No one could guarantee that they could get to me today. WTF?
Great. I kept calling. And found someone. And actually had a plumber here before 3 o'clock.

Now the horrid part of this story is: there were already holes in this wall. Plumber located the patched drywall right away.This particular pipe had already been patched twice!!! And they never thought to maybe do something about the insulation! Insert curse words here for previous idiots who have lived here.

About this time, DH shows up. He told colonel of my problem and colonel sent him home. I am seriously liking this guy.

The plumber was great. He put in a shut off valve for this outside faucet. Fixed everything within 1 1/2 hours. Cost less than $300. I'm feeling fortunate. And I'm glad I hadn't painted this room yet. 'Cause now I've got some drywall patching to do. Good a place to practice as any. After we fix the insulation.

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

What's worse than a broken stove element

I know. A burst pipe in a finished basement.

Oh crap.

Fortunately for me I came home before it got really bad. Walked in and heard a strange sound. Further investigatin led me to the office. And a much louder sound. And look a puddle on floor behind the recliner.

Plumber is on the way.

This is going to cost a fortune.

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

Self=cleaning my $%*

I ran the self-cleaning cycle on the oven this morning and voila, the element broke in two different places! LOL

Self-destruct is more like it.

Found a place about 10 miles away that has replacements.


Cause I was going to make lasagna tonight. Though now I have to go shop the appliance store, my whole schedule will be mixed up. So maybe not lasgana.

Monday, February 05, 2007

Just Right

Yesterday LNS was of course having a Super Bowl Sunday sale. We went to the diner for breakfast as DH and DS had slept late.

I, on the other hand, had been rudely awakened at 6:37 a.m. by a 20 pound cat climbing our headboard. Where this impulse came from, I don't know. Maybe there was a spider on the wall or something. Fortunately the upholstered headboard is still intact. I'm still waiting for the cat to apologize...

Dropped by the needlework store knowing I could find what I wanted quickly, but telling them that I had no control over how many people were in there. Lots of cars in the parking lot. Uh oh.

Found 9 skeins of Crescent Colours and 3 of Weeks Dye Works. But not the one that I was supposed to have. Picked up the 15 skeins of DMC that I'm missing or am extremely low on. Got in line. Listened to people harass each other. Watched the well-meaning, but clueless person try to ring up sales. (she couldn't operate an adding machine. It was sad.) Picked up 2 more skeins of Crescent 'cause they were right there in front of me. Straightened out a calculator problem for the woman in front of me - I can add/subtract/multiply/divide in my head. Finally got out of there - took way too long.

Later in the day, while boys were browsing CompUSA and EB Games, I pulled out my projects in the car and matched up fibers and fabrics. Got everything settled to my satisfaction except for the one missing WDW that was called for in the little kitty sampler project. Came home and looked online to see what that color is - I had the number but not the name. And it wasn't on the Weeks website. Emailed the nice designer - Helga Mandl in Croatia - and had my reply this morning. Seems Weeks has discontinued that particular shade. Oh well. I'll just match things up again this morning and see what works for me. Was thrilled at the prompt reply though!

Sunday, February 04, 2007

Floss Tossing

I've got two small pieces I want to start - the Little House Coffee piece and a kitty piece from the January issue of the Gift of Stitching. (Google it and subscribe - $12 for 12 issues of an online stitching mag - that's a buck a month. What have you got to lose?)

Decided I that the big box of fibers, containing several smaller boxes, needed to be organized because I want to use overdyeds on both projects. I had several projects worth of DMC to put back in floss away bags. Made a list of what DMC is missing or very low - only need 15 skeins. Then organized the overdyeds for the first time ever. They were all just tossed in a box. Now the GAST is alphabetized on rings. So is the Weeks. And my new favorite, for both depth of color and names, is Crescent Colours. Those are in their own bag as I don't have that many of them yet. And the few skeins of Six Stranded Sweets that I have, do not really appeal to me. (I didn't buy them. They were given to me.)

All this took me about 2 hours. Pulled fibers for both projects and picked fabric for the kitty one. But still want to visit LNS and check other fiber choices. Not looking for perfection, but for just right!

Saturday, February 03, 2007

Smaller Project

I have chosen to work on Little House Needleworks "coffe shop."

it can be seen here:


just scroll down.

And I love their new Old West design.

I've got a friend who's working on "coffee" piece. And she's using overdyeds. I'm thinking I may do the same.

Friday, February 02, 2007

No. A Shark!

I am having difficulty posting on blogger on our desktop. I keep getting kicked back to a sign in page. And then sometimes it just goes to an error page. Wah. I hate changes in routine. I usually am online in the a.m. on the desktop and really don't appreciate typing that much on the laptop.

But here I am. I've had 3 posts not get published this week. I am hoping I can find a solution.

If you've watched Wordplay, the documentary type film on crosswords puzzle enthusiasts, you might recognize the title of this post. Was tickled to see Will Shortz and Merle Regel on Oprah this week. I may have to switch my focus back to crosswords. Since I started doing Sudoku when we moved to VA summer of '05, I have rarely done the crossword. Just trying to limit the time I spend on things like this.

The stitching continues on Agnes Scott. But I think I may pick up a smaller project to work along side of her. As I get closer to working the large area of the house I may occasionally get intimidated - read: need a break.

Which leads me to wonder, is intimidate the correct word? I'm not sure. I know sometimes it seems like I need to work myself up, i.e. gird my loins, to work on certain things. I don't mean because it's something I dislike. But it's something that I need to wrap my head around before doing. Cutting threads sometimes falls into the category, but I'm no longer bothered by hemstitching. I don't really think there's anything intimidating about the house area on the Agnes Scott, it's just a large dominant area that I'll need to pay strict attention to.