Saturday, June 29, 2013

Oh my .... I feel like a fish out of water

They said it was going to be hot today and they weren't kidding.  My power struggle with the electric company is over....I threw in the towel today and turned on the air conditioner..whew I'm perspiring like a whore in church (sounds better than sweating like a pig doesn't it?).   Last night upon returning home from work I experienced trouble with my remote control....oh, no!!!!!  I simply cannot function without the T.V. on.  So...I put in a movie and just watched that and started stitching....I was having a lovely time until the movie was over and still no working remote. I tried to figure out a way to change channels the old fashioned way, but couldn't figure it out so today I'm stealing one from the it considered stealing if you own the hotel?   Don't care I'm taking one anyway!  Renee's birthday is this week so I'm busy getting her gifts done.  One would think that since I know when her birthday is I'd do these things way in advance, but my brain just doesn't work that way, consequently I'm stitching like a mad woman trying frantically to get things stitched and put together (which is the problem), but I'm certain with just a couple of days to go I can make it.  Not having T.V. is not helping my mood though.  On the plus side the ladies from New York are down and Cindy made me a beautiful shawl in a beautiful green....I intend to tell everyone I made it so everyone will think I have many talents.  I've been forced to take a break from Shepherd's Bush Gratitude Sampler to work on gifts, but I'm on the second scene and loving it.  I did change a couple of greens as they didn't show up enough against the grass, sometimes with over dyed thread you can run into similar tones but switching out helped let the leaves stand out so no problem.  I don't have a problem switching colors around, and as I've already mentioned many times I switch all lettering on my Shepherd's Bush Samplers to their old lettering which I loved and could read...I have a terrible time (not all the time though) reading the words with the funky alphabet they now use...but I adore Shepherd Bush designs so a little problem like lettering is easy to solve, so I still stitch one any chance I get.  I've also had to put a halt to my Sherry Jones project, but will get it back in the rotation as soon as Renee's gifts are a done deal.  I'm also working on a Pine Mountain pillow "I can do anything, just not everything" for a display in the shop and I can't believe how long this is taking me.  I only work on it while in the shops, but I must be playing too many Hearts games because this should have been done in 2 days and I'm now on week 2.  It's hard to fit stitching in when I'm spending so much time talking to the girls from New York, and playing hearts, oh, yeah and don't forget my surfing on the's a wonder it's not taking longer now that I think about it.   The girls leave today to travel back to N.Y., so perhaps I'll get some stitching done while in the store.  I'm going to put a ban on playing hearts while least for the weekend.  O.K., it's been a few days since I wrote the aforementioned, so now I really have to finish this.  I worked in the Shell Shop today and finished the Pine Mountain pillow...Gloria alleluia and of course I'm now working Salty Yarns and have picked out a new project.  I've decided to begin the Little House Needleworks Mystery Sampler...I'll let you know how it's going tomorrow....of course when I get home tonight I'll want to work on my Shepherd's Bush....oh, my's much to hard for me.  But I'll start the mystery sampler while here at work and switch when I get home.  What a job...stitch all day and stitch all's quite the life down here and it has nothing to do with being located on a beach (although that is a perk.)  Anyway, I'll talk tomorrow, but will end now so the news isn't too old.  Have a great weekend.

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Another glorious day in the neighborhood....

Today is much like yesterday...sunny warm but not hot, plenty of people on the beaches and I'm working in a/c.  I am getting with the program and managed to upload the pictures all by myself...of course by tomorrow I'll forget how I did it, but that's m life..each day presents a new struggle.  Anyway, the first picture shows the fabulous, gorgeous scissors Paola gave me as a birthday gift a couple of weeks ago.  I just had to show you since I know that many of you are scissor fanatics, much like myself.  These scissors are hand made in France and presented in their own wooden case made just for them.  I have seen these scissors before, but never as fancy as the one Paola gave me.  I absolutely love them, but never intend to use them and will rarely take them out of their little case....they are just too valuable.  But lovely to look at and a real treasure for my stitching room.  (I'm sure Sara is eyeballing them knowing they will be hers one day).  The Second picture is a scissors case Renee did in needlepoint for me.  Needlepoint is her first love so I am thrilled I have something done by her.  She also gave me a beautiful pair of scissors for Christmas that will fit perfectly in this case (she actually made the case just for those scissors).  And the final picture is a pyramid needle case that Staci Buhrman stitched for me .  This isn't a good picture, but I'm doing the best I can....anyway, stitched on the sides is "Stitching by the Sea"....and I love it.  I should have shown it open...but try to imagine and the bonus is it's a C.A. Wells know I've had an issue with C.A. Wells, but I've always appreciated her designs, which is why we wanted her to teach here.  So inspite of her attitude,  I'm thrilled to add one of her designs to my stitching showcase.    Beautifully stitched and presented.    I had one more stitched gift to show you but it was too blurry so I'll have to redo and show it tomorrow.  On to other things, the firemen are slowly leaving town and are  being replaced  by skateboarders here to see the Dew Tour...which is really interesting.  The skate bowl is huge and placed down by the pier on the beach.  It attracts old and young alike and lots of families bringing their skateboarding children down for the weekend.  And so far today....nice ladies coming into both shops.  Oh, yeah, I just saw 2 young ladies walking down the boardwalk in bikini's and guess what...their rear ends were not hanging out of the bottom of the they do make them to fit.  Fabulous, now if I could just get everyone to start buying suits that fit my mission here would be complete.  Other than that my life remains the, work and then a little more work....but that's O.K., cause I'm still breathing so that's a good thing.
Had our first "Hotel Impossible" reservation.  They came down for the night requesting that unit and loved it.  We were so excited to show them the's been our passion since it was  finished.  It's ignited a fire under the entire crew.  Mary and Brian began a remake of  the  Lodge in the spring and they've managed to get the 2nd floor of the lodge completely painted and are now fine tuning the rest of the rooms with new bedding, etc.  It really brings new energy into our lives.  And what have I accomplished.  After 12 hours crunched over the Kreinik boxes I have finally, after 2 years of talking about it, finished getting them tagged and in order.  If my feet and my back didn't hurt so much I would have danced a jig.  As it was I sat and ate another chocolate....I felt much better.
So that's it for now....Have a great to you later.


Thursday, June 20, 2013

I almost have it figured out...but not quite....

I tried putting the pictures up by myself and just couldn't quite get there, but I'm convinced that tomorrow I'll be able to do it.  Sara, I know, is praying I figure this out because I don't care if she's on the phone or just sitting this becomes my all consuming thought and she has to stop everything to help me.  The first picture is the view outside the shop window.  I get to see everyone frolicking on the beach, but I'm inside in the a/c, clean, sand free and most of the time I'm happy....and while it's not in the 90's yet, it is promising that 90's are on the way with humidity...ugh!!!  I wish I had gotten the picture of a young lady in her bikini...she did have the decency to put a pair of shorts over it, however she failed miserably in getting her fatness contained.  Now I'm fat myself, so I'm not picking on the fat one fat girl to another...."girl you need to take a long look in the mirror and rethink your wardrobe.  I've never seen so much fat jiggling and hanging over the waste band....oh, not a good look.  But I have to say, even the young women who have near perfect figures...I still see the bottom of their rears hanging out and the boobs are also hanging out.  When did it become fashion to let it all hang out?  I love Rehoboth or Bethany is trying to get an ordinance passed that the men have to pull up their pants.  When in God's name did it become alright or even comfortable to walk around like that?  And now we have to pass laws against it.  People this is embarrassing...there are more important issues to be brought up...parents have to stress the pants up rule at home.  I insist!!!  I've threatened my grandson .... and forget the sideways cap...that is also something I won't allow.  For God's sake can't people look in a mirror and see what looks right?  Fashion?  I don't think so.  Oh, well, I need to move on.  The second picture is my work in progress (or should I say one of the works in progress) the Shepherd's Bush gratitude sampler.  You can see the pattern darning amongst the wrinkles...(you'd think I could iron it before putting it up, but then you'd be wrong.)  Anyway, I had so much fun doing the pattern darning I'm wondering if I could do an entire piece that way.  But then it would probably get a little boring, so I think I'll just enjoy a few snippets.  I'm working a 10am -10pm shift today, and wouldn't you know that darn UPS driver brought in 2 loads today...4 huge cartons (are there any other kind) of yarns and about 5 more for Sea Trader and then our Alice Peterson has arrived along with scarf kits from Great Adirondack I'm definitely in the weeds here.  I was busy all morning trying to get the 5 cartons of signs priced and put away from yesterday....I fell short and when the slew of cartons arrived I kind of gave up.  But I'm getting my second wind now and will be working at it again in a little while.  What happen to my retirement?  If you find it let me know please!  I have to say though, Sara did let me take a break and I got to go into one of the apartments and lay down for a couple of it's not all work, work, work.  But I've got to dinner just arrived.  Have a great night and I'll be talking to you.

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

New sheriff in town.......

Yes that's right, that's my Sara and she is taking over the shop....while I am still here, she's doing the heavy lifting and I'm just an employee of hers.  Of course, I still do some ordering when she's not watching (a girl has to have her "stuff"), but basically she's doing everything.  Thank God!!!  In fact today I stayed home until 4:00 p.m. and then came in to work the late shift from 4-10 p.m.  And the strange's really not taking me much to adjust to this new system.  I'm loving Mary is running the front desk of the hotel (of course Sara is also helping out there) but Sara's primary focus will be on the shops and I just get to sit here, help customers and stitch.  (well of course my hearts game is running all the time as well).  I also get to blame her for anything that comes in that I don't the cat doorstops today which I forgot was my order....ooops!!!  The firemen are in Ocean City this week which is a blessing since I can't see high school seniors for firemen.  Last week we had a slew of the seniors and it was a nightmare, but sanity is starting to return this week so I'm grateful.  Sara showed me how to put pictures on my blog so I'm going to have fun once again getting pictures up.  Thank God for my IPad....this should be a fun summer.  I'll be able to show you all sorts of sights down here.  Of course I've found other uses...I took a picture of a chart I wanted to use but it was in the new Sand, Sea and Cross Stitch book that is big and heavy, so I took a picture of the chart and e-mailed it to myself and now it's up on the computer at work so I don't have to lug the darn book with me.  Win, Win!!!  Right now I've got a few things working...I started Shepherd's Bush's new Gratitude Sampler.'s got 3 scenes on it which are beautiful but a lot of stitching and in between are the bands which I love.  Last night I finished the pattern darning and it is beautiful.  I've done that before on some of their other samplers and I just love stitching that stitch.  I've also got a Sherry Jones working as Barbara Nunez and I are both going to get ours stitched (we went to the same retreat years ago where it was a class...which neither of us bothered to start let alone finish.)  But we're hoping to have them done by Jamboree and then we'll work together to finish them.  At least that's the plan at this moment.  I love a plan I just hope I don't crash and burn.  I'm also stitching some of the designs from the Sand, Sea and Cross Stitch book.  Stacy Stinson brought it to my attention over a month ago and I just couldn't wait until we got them in.  It's perfect...every design, and there are plenty of them, is easy but fabulous for a beach cottage or anyone that is obsessed with nautical. Moving It's been a slow start to our summer...duh, is it summer?  By the temperatures we're experiencing you wouldn't know it's summer.  I have yet to turn on my a/c at home....I'm sure Delmarva Power will be raising rates since they aren't making much off of me.  I'm going to try to go all summer without a/c...I purchased a big floor fan to see if I can take it.  I know last year I couldn't so I'm not holding out much hope, but we'll see...I've made it so far but we haven't had temps in the 90's yet.  O.K., I'm about to go on a rant here....I have two people in the shop that don't have a clue what they hell they are doing or looking at and insist upon asking me 3 million questions while I'm trying to work on the website.  While I'm trying to be pleasant, if you don't know what the hell you are talking about stop asking stupid questions.  Of course the woman who is asking the questions doesn't do the work, but she feels she's helpful to the other woman who can't tell the difference between counted cross stitch and needlepoint if she keeps asking me questions.  She just picked up Sweetheart Tree's Quadrielle and asked if it was a pillow.  Really?  It's an ornament and it looks like an ornament...for God's sake leave me alone.  I guess I should count my blessings since everyone else who has been here tonight is a true stitcher and they have all been really, really nice.  So I guess one idiot won't ruin my day...especially since Sara taught me to get pictures I'm going to stop talking since it's time to close for the night, but I work a double shift tomorrow so I'll be on the blog for sure.  Have a great's suppose to be sunny! 

Monday, June 17, 2013

Oh, so much has has happened I don't know where to begin....

Since I last blogged we have had Betsy Morgan here for a weekend of classes and what fun we had with the attendees.  We just love having true stitchers around, sharing ideas, seeing what they are working on and the class pieces were just fabulous, and none of them ask me for string!   A big "Thank You" to Betsy...fabulous!  See you next year for another class....oops I hear you may be coming to our SuperBowl party to watch the ladies put together some of your projects...and perhaps assist them....we hope so.   Paola was here from Luxenburg and has stayed for a while to visit, in fact she is leaving today to fly home, but while here she's been stitching on her class projects and has completed one side of her acorn piece already...and gorgeous!   We've had fun with Paola during her stay and I've put her into action in the shop...helping customers and finding things for people.  She's a great salesperson, very knowledgeable, etc....and doesn't seem to mind helping and when she speaks with her European accent...welll she could sell snow to the Eskimos so she's perfect for Salty Yarns.  Now if I could just find a way to make her commute shorter I'd hire her in a second.  And I will show you later what she brought me from France...oh, my aren't going to believe it.  Scissor collectors will simply die when they see it...but first, I've got to learn to take the picture and ship it off to the blog with my new IPad which the girls gave me for my birthday.  I knew if I kept asking Sara to take the pictures with her phone she'd eventually figure out a way to get me doing it myself.  Anyway, since Paola leaves today I'll start taking IPad lessons and get the pictures on the blog.  But the really huge news for us February or March our Mary contacted Hotel Impossible from the Travel Channel.  As you are aware, we own a small family run hotel where we have our shop and hold the retreats and classes. Mary spoke to me about contacting the Travel Channel about our hotel being featured on Hotel Impossible.  I was shocked at first but then felt, "what the hell" they won't come anyway so I said "do whatever you want".  In todays world small hotels like ours without the ammenities struggle to compete.  We have a great many tenants who come back year after year, however, age has taken some of them from us and we need new blood.  So Mary felt the folks on Hotel Impossible could give us some ideas on how to compete.  I didn't get concerned about their coming, even when they sent us a questionnaire they wanted filled out.  No, I still said, "they aren't coming to Ocean City to do a small hotel."  When they called Mary, I began to feel a tad concerned but still thought they wouldn't show up.  But in May when they called for a date I felt conflicted.  I'm a reality show junkie, but don't want to be one  humilating myself and my family....I like feeling superior when I'm watching the others humiliating themselves.  So that's the point at which I started paying attention and questioning Mary about the humiliation factor.  But since I  was turning everything over to she and Sara I felt I had to let them make their own mistakes, but on national T.V.?  At that point she took it to Sara who looked a little like a deer in headlights as well as she thought about the embarrassment we would encounter makes idiots of ourselves on T.V.  But in the end, we all got on board and felt that if they could help us in any way it was worth it....or so we convinced ourselves.  First one of the producers and the interior decorator for the show came down and spent 3 days with us.  They went through the buildings, and interviewed us extensively.  Now, in case you aren't familiar with this show....the host arrives and from the get go starts critiquing everything about your hotel that he feels is wrong.  Sometimes it's a little brutal and that was my fear.  I was also afraid I might get a little defensive and start cursing like a sailor at him....even though they are here to help you in the end.  And before they leave they do a remodel of something, your lobby, a room, something to show you what you can do to improve your property.  But I wasn't focused on that and really while it would be great to figure out a way to remodel without going to the poor house, I was more focused on what he was going to say in front of the cameras.  Stacy, the producer, knew I was concerned about how humiliating this was going to be.  She was extremely kind and kept insisting that Anthony would not be here to embarrass us and would be very helpful.  We were scared to death.  Then they called and moved the date from August to June 9th as a start date to begin.  With only 2 weeks or less that was nerve wracking, because with the constant rain or dampness there was a lot of painting we hadn't done yet.  So everyone went into overdrive, getting the place into shape for the season (our normal routines) and I started cleaning up my office.  However, Stacy called Mary and told her to tell me to stop...they needed to film the office the way it was when she saw it....a disaster to say the least.  But I was being a sport and said fine, I'll leave it.  Betsy Morgan's class ended on Sunday and the show film crew and Anthony the host arrived on the 9th.  We were exhausted from the weekend, but managed to put on a brave face.  While the rest of us were dressed in Ocean City casual...well Sara kept coming down in brand new smart outfits claiming it was all she had to wear..while Mary and I just pulled on our t-shirts and slacks.  I called it being real, oh yeah, Sara also put on makeup every day.  Needless to say in the heat and humidity I wasn't about to put on makeup...hell I don't put it on in the winter when it's cold, who am I kidding.  The only time I wear makeup....going to church on Sunday.  Anyway, the first day we were sequestered in the shop and not allowed out because we weren't allowed to meet Anthony until he had taken the tour.  Frustrating for us as I had IRS crap to take care of ...never ending forms!  But I was a sport to begin with and stayed put in Salty Yarns for 6 hours....we couldn't even leave to go get lunch.  They had Alex, one of the producers, hold us hostage.  Of course Debbie and Paola were here with us so everything became a joke.  Anthony also drew crowds on the boardwalk as he went over the property (it was high school senior week in Ocean City and apparently they had seen him before) so there were always people trying to get in the camera shots driving the camera crews crazy.  There were several cameras and plenty of crew members.  We also were miked daily throughout all day, a fact I never remembered as I spoke openly and loudly about everything (big surprise).  And then around 4:30 p.m. we were summoned to meet Anthony.  So we were finally introduced to the host in front of the cameras.  I was my usual charming self (O.K., perhaps I was a little bit leary and showed that, but in a charming way.)  It was during this initial meeting that he started with how lovely this old hotel is and how well preserved it was and clean, so very clean...but you just knew there was a "however" coming.  So it was no surprise when he said, "But, your rooms are outdated (I believe we new this) and our systems were antiquated.  Well so far he had told me nothing I didn't suspect so I wasn't too surprised and was waiting for the worst news....which really never came.  The surprise for us was that while he did get tough at times with us, he always served that with a bit of niceness so while tears flowed from everyone at times in the end we survived and we loved Anthony and the entire crew who also treated us so nicely, especially when on the very last day I took a nose dive into the shop with the crew filming on the boardwalk out front.  I don't really think they saw it, although two men on the boardwalk came running in to assist. (talk about embarrassing...someone my size doesn't bounce back up) and of course this was the day two customers came in just as I was rolling on the floor, so I just said, "Good morning, just crawl over me I'll be up soon."  Fortunately Sara was working with me and helped get me off the floor (ever graceful of course).  Anyway, Thursday was reveal day....we finally get to see what the contractor, painters, electricians, tile men were doing for 4 days, and it was simply amazing.  They absolutely transformed one of the apartments....I can't wait until the tenants arrive and see the changes.  It was unbelievable and they did it keeping in mind that it had to be done so that we could duplicate it in the other apartments.  While they purchased new furniture, lighting, etc., the paneling was painted in such a way you couldn't tell it was paneling.  It was jaw dropping.  We are so excited about the entire thing the guys have been painting other rooms since they left.  New pretty linens on the bed....gorgeous.  I was always afraid of white bedspreads, etc., they got beautiful white bedspreads with a teal pattern running through it.  Throw pillows on each new chair and a queen size sofa bed in a salmon color...unbelievable.  Now for me that was far beyond the call of duty and we were thrilled but they weren't done.  Anthony also got us an upgraded, top notch reservation system.  When the gentlemen from roommaster came up to install the system he took one look at our computers and went to Staples and purchased two new computers with flat screens in the largest's like looking at T.V.  Anthony also gifts us a neat system so that we can scan all papers and get them filed and they are saved in Cloud.  I mean the gifts go on and on but the greatest gift of all for the girls and myself....I was told to retire from the hotel and let the girls take over which believe it or not I've done.  I have gone in while Sara is working in the shop to close out a couple of issues with insurance and IRS, but I'm done with the day to day bills, etc.  And once I get the insurance and IRS satisfied (are they ever) I'm out.  Sara is also trying to get me out of the shops but that's not as easy, so I've been in there every day, just not 2 shifts a day yet.  So my life is getting easier, I think.  And I want to thank everyone who e-mailed or called us regarding our new adventure as it hit all the papers, including USA Today and was on the local and Baltimore news.  Plus we've had daily tours through the updated unit from people stopping by to see what they did.  We've had an exciting two weeks and it was such fun to share it with Paola and Debbie.  Debbie hung out as long as she could on Thursday but they didn't do the reveal in time for her to see it.  Paola took photos though and sent them to her, so she felt she was part of the experience.  I can't say enough about the crew, producers, Anthony (who we love, love, love), Blanche the interior decorator who did such a fabulous job, Joe Dashiell who was instrumental in creating a lot of the design that Blanche thought up...yes there were a lot of people involved who worked through the night to get it done and we are truly grateful.  Can't wait for everyone to see it.  So for now I'm signing off and will get back to normal activity tomorrow.  Good night everyone.