Thursday, June 19, 2014

Lazy, hazy, crazy days of summer...

Summer has hit with a's in the 90's and as we all know, I don't do well with heat.  Yesterday I never even got out of my p.j.'s, sat inside in the a/c and thanked God I didn't have to go outside.  I started a Pine Mountain for the shop, and after stitching one full line realized I hadn't centered it and had to tear out and start over.  UGH!!!  Made me want to chunk it, but since I haven't had a finish in a couple of weeks, I have to get something done.  It's so difficult to work on shop samples when I have so much that I want to work on personally.  And then I look at Amy's blog...oh, my God, she's about finished one of the class pieces...I don't think anyone else has even worked on theirs yet and there she is...almost done.  Hell, by now she is probably done.  She is the bionic stitcher and does such beautiful work.  I use she, Paola and Stasi as my inspiration each day.  While Sara wasn't watching I stuck the Patriotic Poppies in my stitch bag (no time for lectures), but last week I got 2 kits in the mail so I'm falling behind more and more every day.  I got the next Gathering kit and the Chessie Heirlooms kit #1...oh my, I hope Sara enjoys some of this because I won't live long enough to get all this stitching done.  And today I had to work the 10-4 shift...ugh I had to go out into the heat.  But I survived and now I'm in the air conditioned shop so I'm a happy camper.  And as always, we got new stock there's work to be done, but I'm too busy right now trying to find just the right threads for Drawn Threads "Summer Jumble."  It's great not to be the boss anymore...I feel free to do whatever I want.  Yeah!!!  I did put all the new stock  into inventory on the computer...I've done my job.  So I' m getting projects lined up.  Been dying to start Summer Jumble, but we don't have the right colors of Dinky Dyes, so I'm making a choice so I can start and have picked up Gloriana for the yellow/gold.  But the wings of the bee are giving me a headache.  They call for Needlepoint Inc. Beige, which we have, but my vision is white or Kreinik pearl.  I've looked at Amy's and I love it and I think she used beige so I don't know why I'm having such a hissy fit.  Then I changed the fabric...I'm back to the Lakeside Magnolia.  Can't give a reason, I just love it.   I need to make a decision and stick with it.   Beth Jernigan was in a while ago...always good to see our Stitch 'n Bitch members walk in.  She came to sign up for Jamboree and get her pre-stitch.  If you have signed up for Jamboree, but didn't get your pre-stitch yet give Sara a call because I believe all pre-stitch kits have gone out.  Don't panic if you didn't get yours, you have plenty of time.  These are not huge projects so you can get them done in a short amount of time.  And just think, you will be taking home 2 completed projects from Jamboree.  Whoppee!!!!! That's a win win.  About 3:45 UPS showed up with approx. 8 large cartons, several of which were yarn , are you kidding me?  So as I'm having a hissy fit over that (Sara still hasn't dealt with the cartons of yarn that came in earlier this week, and in rolls Fed Ex with 2 of the biggest boxes I've ever seen....we were out of room needless to say so I was fuming and Sara just wanted me gone.  In fact she saw a crisis coming so she mysteriously decided I didn't need to work tomorrow.  While I decided the best thing for all involved was to get the heck out of there, I assured her she better have a plan because I was coming back in the morning to get all the cartons out of the shop and then told Vernon he better make room in his apartment because that is where the yarn was going.  Sara is doing a wonderful job with the shop, don't get me wrong, but I can't stand cartons sitting around and she doesn't seem to care about that.  Didn't I mention earlier I was glad not to be in charge?  Is micro managing considered in charge?  Anyway, came home, made dinner and was taking out my stitching when I felt a twinge in my wrist.  OMG, I couldn't even hold the needle ... what the hell is going on?  I've taken  the night off from stitching (with all I have here to stitch) and rested my hand but it's now almost 11 p.m. and it's still hurting me.  Please God don't let this be carpel's tunnel....can that come on all at once.  So now I'm stressed over this and the shop, although Sara did call me earlier tonight to say she had a plan (I'm sure she does...get those cartons out of the shop before I arrive in the morning and act like she got it all put in the storeroom...which is already overflowing with yarn).  Well, this saga will continue I'm sure and in the meantime I found a elastic wrist thingy(I believe that's the technical term) but it's about 2 sizes too big (something too big for me...didn't know that was possible?)  I might try to alter it before tomorrow.  Meanwhile I'm typing with one hand and trying to figure out how to hold my q-snap and still stitch with one hand.  I might bring a stand home (Jackie donated one to me that she no longer needed and that way I didn't have to take one out of for me...thanks Jackie) tomorrow and see if I can manage that.  Not stitching is just not an option.  Anyway, that's my report for today....not in great shape but hopeful tomorrow will bring less cartons, more stitching and less pain.  Have a great day yourself.

Wednesday, June 18, 2014 cute are these pin cushions!

Had to show these new needlepoint pieces that just came in to the shop.  They are pin cushions (obviously) and the shell is a real Murex(about 5" in width) straight from the ocean.  The designer also makes shell pins(2 come with each kit) to stick into the pin cushion once it's finished.  Too, too cute.  And this should be a real easy finish since you simply stuff the shell with fiber fill and glue the needlepoint into the shell.  This is definitely a one night project.   Sara is really getting into the needlepoint, thanks to Renee, who loves needlepoint and is always coming up with new stuff she finds.  Of course once you tell Sara about it she's off and running to the computer for information and then the orders start flowing.  At first I missed this part of the shop, but then I realized I don't have any of the headaches from the ordering so now when I'm in the shop I get to look at the new rack to see what's just come in and have fun like a regular, win!  I feel a little guilty because initially when I retired I said I'd help with ordering, etc., but so far I've done very little.  I think it's helpful to stay out of the way as much as possible because otherwise I start micro-managing and no one want me.  I was sitting on the porch the day I went in 6 hours too early (oh, God) and was so distracted by a dirty chair and a rocker whose "rockers" hadn't been painted I had to go inside and complain about it.  Sara just looked like "it's not my problem" but Mary acts like she's being blamed for anything that seems wrong so when I left a note on her computer explaining what was wrong she sprang into action, apologizing and getting the problem solved.  Then I saw Vernon who had just finished putting a new door on one of the units (looking like a wet rag from sweat) and when I started with him, he said, "I just brought the chair up and haven't finished with it yet. How about giving me a minute."  Just like a man, you wash the chair  and paint it before you bring it up to the porch.  Yeah, he's not too thrilled to run into me when I have that look in my eye either.  And then Brian (Mary's husband)  is the one who ends up wiping the chair down and getting one of the guys to paint the rocker, because Mary runs to him first.  I can't quite explain how thrilled the kids are when I go home and how equally thrilled when I stay home.  Yes this retirement is a win win for everyone.  I finally broke down yesterday when at 95 degrees I was too hot....and was forced to put on my A/C for the first time and now it probably won't be turned off until September.  Win Win for Delmarva Power.  I held out as long as I could...darn it..... I just loved 70 degrees with an ocean breeze.  For now that's just a memory.   I swore after the winter we had I wouldn't complain when it got I'm not complaining...I'm just telling.  So because I'm inside in a/c, I decided to work on the web sight again.  I'm still working on straightening out the web site.  This will be an on going battle for some time.  Feels good to be back working on it again though.  Just remember while I'm putting new things up first each day, there will be some pieces that aren't so new but fell off into the blogosphere and I'm just putting them back where they belong.  Well, I guess I'll get back to work.  Have a great day

Monday, June 16, 2014

Summer is moving forward at a fast and furious pace....

Just had to show you the two needlepoint canvases we got in cute.  I love it when they put Ocean City on them...makes a great remembrance of your vacation, don't you think?  The other picture is my first watch fob stitching.  These come from Brenda Gervais and I love love love them.  The stitching is done over 2 on 40 ct. Confederate Gray (Weeks Dye Works).  I had no trouble stitching these...wasn't really that much to it.  My trouble came when I had to add the words.  But I finally mastered that and was thrilled with the end result.  Of course now I'm finding other designs that will fit.  This is my new passion apparently.  I'll keep you posted on my newest one, but I can't say much because it's going to be a birthday gift.  Today we got the July Just Cross Stitch which has the Christmas preview in it.  So now we can start stitching for Christmas.  OMG...I'm so far behind.  Today I had a reminder on my phone(Sara showed me how to do this on my new iPhone) about you may recall I missed work last Monday...I sat home all day when I was suppose to work 10-4.  So today I was quite proud of myself when I strolled into work at 9:00 a.m.  Sara asked what I was doing there and I proudly announced that I remembered I was suppose work today and then she said, "Mom, your shift is 4-10 not 10-4.  Whew....I'm having a harder time than I thought keeping up with this work thing.  Luckily I have 2 days off to think about this.  But this time I double checked...Thursday 10-4.  (It's just too much to have to remember. )  I've started updating the shop web site...that way I can still work from home.  When I had the web person update the software last winter it screwed things up a bit (which I didn't realize initially)and I'm slowly finding all the problems and that means manual corrections on my part.  UGH!  So if you go into the Just Arrived section   of the web site you will be seeing some things that aren't new and that is because they were dropped off the catalog during the update.  I found this out when I searched "Shepherds Bush" on our site and found just 3 items.  I about lost my mind.  But I'm spending my time at home working on getting everything put back on the site.  I seem to go 3 feet forward and 2 back.  But at least with some hard work and diligence I can get everything back.  Anyway, wanted to get a post up so I'll say good night (it's almost 2:00 wonder I'm always tired).

Thursday, June 12, 2014

A Great Weekend with Betsy Morgan....

We had a spectacular weekend with Betsy Morgan which started on Thursday as all stitchers made their way to Ocean City.  We were thrilled to have Paola fly in from Luxenburg.  We just don't get to see enough of Paola so when she's here it's a special treat.  This year we had several new friends come so it was expecially nice to see so many new faces.  I've talked about  her blog, well,  Amy Wilson was here with her bff, Kathy.  Amy writes the,  so that was exciting for me.  I've been following her blog since April and she is a fabulous blogger.  She writes everyday and adds tons of pictures.  She's also is a prolific stitcher.  She and Paola must stitch 23 hours a day with only 1 hour of sleep.  And the pieces they stitch are fabulous.  Class pieces...mercy they each take numerous classes each year, so their "show and tell" was multiple class pieces, and so exciting .  It is inspiring to see so many gorgeous pieces at one time.  It's a shame Paola doesn't blog...darn I should have taken some pictures to show you.  (why do I always think of this after the fact...drat!)  Check out Amy's blog though and see what I'm talking about.  And both Amy and Paola brought show and tell.  Now that was exciting.  Paola is now stitching on 45 count (omg..are you kidding me?)  And she has taken home some 52 count.  I thought I was doing well when I stitched the Halloween pieces in the watch fobs that you see above on 40 ct.  Amy loves to change up the designs to suit herself which is what you should do but so many of us don't.  You must see her Shepherd's Fold.  It is very different than the Shepherd's Bush original and looks wonderful.  You can see it on her blog.  Anyway, Betsy's class started Friday morning and went all day.  Then the stitchers  made their way to the lobby where they stitched and talked for the rest of the day with a break for eating dinner and then mingling during Sara's reception.  A whole lot of work was done on Day 1, followed by an equally demanding Day 2.  And while the stitchers were a little exhausted by the end of Day 2, they were excited about the progress they made.  Friday saw them finish the crown pin darn cute.  Saturday saw them finish the Thistle needlecase...just gorgeous.  Sunday, exhausted but undaunted they attended their 3rd day of classes but thankfully it was over around 2:30 and then they came to the lobby to hang out, stitch and talk about what they did.  Betsy does such a wonderful job of teaching, and putting together her kits that you really don't care how much work goes into the finishing of the projects.  Her finishing directions are complete so you will have no trouble when you get home finishing your project.   If you have never taken a class you will be amazed at how you learn.  There are many wonderful teachers out there...if you haven't taken a class before I encourage you to take one in your LNS.  As for me...well I worked the shop all weekend (which apparently made me lose my mind since Monday I sat home stitching and didn't show up for work...the first time ever!)  Sara called me and asked what I was doing and I said, "Just sitting on the sofa stitching" so instead of saying, "Mom get your lazy behind off the sofa and come to work," she just said, well have a great day.  I didn't find out I was suppose to work on Monday until Sara came to my house at the end of the day on Monday to bring me something.   In my defense, I really thought I was suppose to work on Tuesday, which is usually Renee's day but I thought I was working her shift because she had a doctor's appointment.  Apparently now I'm delusional as none of that was correct.  But I'm back on track now....of course I'm off all week (working 4 days apparently made me lose my mind).   Now about the pictures in the beginning of this post.  On the far left are the 3 fobs from Brenda Gervais, "With thy Needle & Thread".  I just love her designs and was thrilled when she designed for the watch pendant as I have seen what the rest of you are doing with them and I was dying to stitch one.  Now, of course, it's my new obsession.  Anyway, they are stitched on 40 ct. Weeks Confederate Gray linen, over 2.  Despite my eye issue, with my peepers, clip on magnifiers and my Daylight magnifier...I had no trouble seeing this to stitch.  I had such fun and was able to stitch each one in just a matter of a couple of hours.  The hardest part of finishing these was the cutting out of the lettering.  They suggest using an old book, or scrapbooking lettering, but I don't like to cut up books, and the scrapbook lettering...well, what I had at the time was too large.  God forbide I actually get out of my p.j.'s to go find some.  Anyway, in the end I did find an old, old library book that the library had put on sale to get it off their shelves.  The lettering was perfect so that problem was solved, however, getting them from the book to the project was almost my undoing.  I decided to stiffen up the letters by using double sided tape to attach them to card stock.  My fingers are too big and I'm too clumsy to handle such small pieces of anything.  I'd get them all set and then I'd hit the table and they would move.  I finally got them glued (yes I said glued) in place and after struggling to get the back off the watch pendant, I was finally finished.  I Love Love Love these pendants, fobs whatever you want to call them.  Now, of course I'm looking for other designs.  While I was really so excited about this, Stasi Buhrman comes for the weekend with a finished one (designed by her with the focus on the Bee...and stitched on 52 ct).....only smaller than the Tim Holtz pendant so that put me on a whole new hunt.  Wednesday, which was Paola's last day with us, I took her to Salisbury so she could go to Michael's and then Hobby Lobby.  We made a day of it and I found the smaller pendants (win, win) among other little goodies and Paola found a few treasures and then we came back home to sit in the lobby and stitch.  We agreed to meet in the lobby after my tutoring session with Michael and we were going to stitch for the rest of the night.  We made it to the lobby, however, neither one of us lifted a needle.  Paola and Sara were busy setting up her Fitbit, which we picked up in Salisbury and I was helping Michael write a 10 page paper (can you image 10 pages for a 13 year old).  He had to write a story that involved 5 different continents.  He was just struggling so Paola, Sara and I helped him out.  Paola and Sara were on tech devices and I was busy typing it.  Michael was on a computer as well and I was telling him what he should be looking for.  In the end before the evening was over, we had a paper alright...but it was only 5 pages and we all decided that was good enough since I don't think the teacher is even going to read them since they have 2 half days left and report cards are handed out on Friday.    So I bid Paola good bye and then I made my way home...tired but excited to get started with my stitching.  I pulled out my Welsh cottage, saw I made a mistake, tore it out and said, "That's it" I'm done.  I'll start on this tomorrow.  So in the stitching was done on Wednesday.  The middle picture is Drawn Threads "Autumn Jumble"...which I loved stitching so much I'm now going to do Summer Jumble.  In fact I might start that tomorrow just to get my stitching back on track.  The final picture is my 6 year old grandson, Solomon.  He had been taking Karate classes now for a couple of years and Saturday he went to get his black belt which I'm thrilled to say he earned by passing the test.  6 years old.  We're so proud of him.  Anyway, I've been sitting here since 3:00 a.m. and I do believe Candy Crush is calling my name.  Talk to you soon

Monday, June 2, 2014

Another beautiful day in Paradise.....the sun is shining, the beach is rocking with  high school seniors (ugh)...we all know I hate these senior weeks when drinking, peeing, throwing up seem to be all they do on our property and they aren't even staying with us.  So Paradise perhaps is a little tarnished for the next few weeks, but it's still sunny with cooler temperatures, which I love, but it's going up every day so my feet will be swelling at any time.  Our ladies start arriving tomorrow for the Betsy Morgan weekend.  We have a few newbies so we're excited, plus it brings Paola back again and we love Paola.  Can't wait to see her show and tell which is always extraordinary.  She never ceases to amaze me.  And Stasi Buhrman will be here along with Debbie Liming...oh, my a lot of our regulars returning for a weekend of stitching, laughing, a little cursing and a lot of stitching.  Speaking of which, these 2 Shepherd's Bush pieces followed me home from the framers.  You know I love Shepherd's Bush.  In fact I'm working on Shepherd's Fold as we speak and Sara handed me the 2nd piece, a scissor fob which will probably get done before I get the Box piece done because....I ran out of Olive Branch, knew we had it in the store so grabbed it and started using it kidding myself that with overdyes you can make it look alright if they are a shade different.  As I was using it and noticing differences, I then told myself it looked like some of the yard was in the shade but by today I'm saying...I need to redo all the light colored fiber and just use what I have in the that's going to take a while and put me further behind....but what the heck can you do?  Rats...and then I'm doing a piece for Renee's birthday and I swear there is a mistake on the chart where the designer forgot one section and repeated one section so the entire alphabet isn't there and one section is a repeat of the first section.  I'm having no fun stitching this piece as well....darn it, I want to stitch something I want to stitch in the worst way.  I'm thinking of stitching the Shepherds Bush fob just so I can have a fun fast finish.  I just can't figure out whether to stitch it over one, which I prefer, or go ahead and stitch it as they planned it.  Decisions are going to do me in!  Sitting here looking out on the boardwalk is yet once again, a huge mistake.  I cannot believe what some of these girls are wearing.  There certainly is no shame in their game...and yet, there should be.  Taste certainly does not come into play.  I did have an Asian family in earlier, and of course everyone was dressed beachy, but nice and the daughter was elegant in her straw hat and lovely black dress until she turned around and there was a keyhole back and there was her bra back.  Honestly, her mother should have told her seeing the bra through the keyhole was not the intent of the keyhole.  But as long as you saw her front the front she looked lovely.  Anyway, we're hanging out, eating Thrashers French fries, eating Alaska Stand burgers and dogs and waiting for you to come in.  So come on down and take a look at what's new.