Monday, March 31, 2008

I.R.S. here it comes....

Yes, by golly, I've handed over the records to our accountant...a lot late...but there nonetheless. I'm suppose to hand them over in February, but the only time I did that he still filed for the extension and sent them in April 15th..and he called me 16 million times with questions. I've noticed that if I give them to him at the last moment he doesn't have time to ask all the questions (which I automatically give him written down now when I turn the papers over to him..but I'm pretty sure he'd think of new questions) and he still gets them done by the 15th. So, that's my taxes..out of my hands...soon to be in IRS hands...please pray they treat me gently as they haul my fat behind to could be a weight loss diet that I hadn't thought of before...although with my luck I'd love the food in the jail house. Do they serve lobster with drawn butter? Folks I don't know where you are, but it's cold down here. The temps read 52 degrees, but I swear it's colder. I said to Sara, "I'm telling you I can't get warm, I was so cold last night I had on two quilts." To which she responded, "That's because your heat went out." Oops...I thought of that but since it's not my job to respond to that little emergency I don't. I figure Mary will get cold sooner than I will so I wait. She called Vernon this morning with the emergency and he called the plumber...each of us will call someone until someone gives up and goes and does something about it. Sure glad I turned the heat back when I left home. I'm saving a whole lot of money this month...thank God since I spent $1300 on oil last month. People need to stop taking showers and running hot water down here. Anyway, I'm almost done with my 2nd block of Shores...but I've run into a stumbling block. I don't like the last fish. Funky colors...but I love my middle tonight I'll have to tear out what I've done and figure this out. But I should have it ready to show tomorrow. I also started on the 3rd block of Hearts of America while I was in the shop yesterday. I won't work on Shores in the shop as it is 36 ct. and I need my magnifier and quiet...but Hearts I can do anywhere so I should have that block done in a few days....if only I put something together for heavens sake. I still have 2 things waiting for me to stitch them up....hate it! Fire update: The Somerset DoughRoller definitely won't be there this summer, nor the T-Shirt shop next door (no big loss there in my opinion..however, I do feel sorry for the gentlemen who watched it go up in flames and will lose out on this summer)...but fortunately with the firemen and the hoses in place the rest of the block was saved. Reminds me of the fire not so many years ago when Crab Alley here beside us went up in flames and burnt down the rest of the block, but our building not 12" away was saved because the firemen kept a water wall between the buildings. We have the best fire crew ever, and we are so grateful for them.

Sunday, March 30, 2008

Now I'll get nothing done!!!!

I just got on the blog site from the shop, where as you can see I'm not working since I'm sitting here blogging or playing solitare, and I'm so excited because now I can update while I'm actually sitting, ahhh, I mean working in the shop. If you are not in Ocean City wishing you were...stop's cold! Compared to Friday's 76 degrees, todays 42 (at least this morning) puts us right back into winter. I don't know whether to put on shorts (yea that's a good look for me) or thermal underwear the weather is so unpredictable, however, it's sunny so I have hopes we might get into the 50's before the afternoon is over. Guess what came in Friday....guess...alright I'll tell you. Remember the quaker basket's I told you about after Nashville, "Abigal Colby's Work Basket from Primitive Traditions...well they are here. The charts included are for the basket top, Sampler for underside of top lid, needle pocket, pin log, basket fob & 3x3 measure, scissor fob, scissor pocket, thread pocket, and a cartouche. There are directions for finishing each piece as well, and you get the Nantucket Basket...all for $118.00. There has been discussion lately about the designer having to redesign for oval baskets, but we have the round baskets in our order so I'm thinking she's redesigned for the reorders...either one is going to be terrific, trust me on this, and it's heart is doing flip flops I'm so excited, or perhaps that's the cold pizza slice left over from yesterday's lunch that I just ate for breakfast. Jennifer H. was in yesterday as was Linda W. Linda brought in show and tell, and left her Cancer Biscornu & scissor fob here for us to display. Thanks did a great job.. I'm going to have to get Linda her own cabinet shortly, so far we have her biscornu, the welcome plate and a 40ct. ruler she did. She's a fast worker and loves to stitch, obviously. Jennifer stopped by to get fibers for her Lauren Sauer class and ended up spending a lot more than that. Isn't that funny how you need one thing and end up with so many others. I can go into the grocery store for a loaf of bread and when I leave I have a cart load and I've spent $100 and don't even get me started on Walmart. I never leave there for under $100. In fact I purposely haven't been there for 3 weeks, it's killing me, but I'm staying out of the stores (I believe that is a request from my accountants). Yesterday we had spurts when we were busy and towards the end of the day (never a great time for me) we had a real push. Thankfully Sara came up from her shop to help me (for which I was grateful) because I had one customer, a local no less, who came in with her daughter and 3 other 10 year olds. Now, I don't mind most children if they behave themselves, but these kids were all over the store, pulling on stuff and then just setting it down, (who cares where they got it). I was such a wreck, and Sara thought telling me who they were would help..not really, I don't give a damn who it is...teach your children how to behave in stores. I don't blame the kids, its the parents (don't we always get the blame?) But in this case the blame lays squarely on the mother who was just looking at Vera Bradley like she didn't have any kids to begin with. And then I love it when they think they are getting them in line by saying, "How about helping me pick out a tote" as the kids scatter all over the shop. Hell, honey, I'll pick the tote for you and let's get you on your way (at least that's what I'm thinking.) The minute she stepped out the door believe me I locked it. I made sure all the kids were on the other side of course and thanked God they come in once and only once a year! Oh, yes, it's getting close to the summer when I get to experience this often. I'm excited!!!! Anyway, got home last all ready to stitch, in fact was stitching when Mary called to see what I was doing (that's her way of saying, I'm bringing Solomon down if you aren't busy) so I ended up babysitting until 9:15 p.m. which means my stitching time was limited. I did however, get the eel done on Shores of Hawk Run Hollow and I ended up backstitching the Seahorse since it really didn't show up all that well (remember I switched colors). I've decided I'm more of a realist than the design is...I need things to look more like they do in real life. I think that's why I have so many problems with samplers. I just can't understand when a person is taller than the house, etc., and so I've changed colors to make it more real like, so that's where I ran into trouble with the seahorse. But I like what I've done and after is all about me and what I love and don't love, isn't it? I'm assuming everyone's life is now revolving around my likes and dislikes...please don't disallusion me by telling me you are not running your life around would just hurt too much. Sara has arrived...she closed her shop because it's too darn cold. So we are now taking a stitch day in the shop. It just doesn't get any better. A great view, good music, take out food, my diet caffeine free Pepsi and stitching. I should have worn my P.J.'s and then I'd feel right at home. I need a lounge chair in this shop....I've got a portable DVD player so we play movies...yes, a lounge chair...will the accountant O.K. that do you think? It's work related isn't it. I never thought about this, but I could right off my house as a warehouse for needlework. Now we're talking..the closer it gets to the 15th of April the more creative I become. My house is now a warehouse (well, since the tree is still located on my living room floor that isn't far from the truth and closets and cabinets loaded with needlework)...this is the kind of creative thinking Leona Helmsley had...oops..she landed in jail didn't she? Well, I may still give it a try because jail would give me extra stitching time. Can I have needles and scissors in jail? Well, I don't even really need scissors since the thread cutters would work. O.K., I'm working this out just in case. If you don't see me in the shop after April 15th, I may be in jail, but I'll be they let you have a computer in jail? That way I could keep you updated on stitching in jail. From what I've seen on the news, you can have anything you want in jail, so I should be all set. I wonder if they will let me have the tree sitting on the floor since I've gotten kind of use to it. You can come down and see me in jail and we can have a retreat.. Ooh, bad news...just got word that the Doughroller on Somerset Street is on fire as is Marty's Playland...that's a major chunk out of the boardwalk and I mean burning to the ground according to sources. Vernon's taking a bike ride down to see what else he can learn, but this can't be good. O.K. the report just came through, Doughroller is gone but Marty's was saved with minor damage. While I thank God it wasn't our building, I'm so sorry to see these old places go. We're the only ones left standing built with wooden frames (and that's why we catch on fire). While the city and fire companies would prefer we take down these wood & frame buildings and construct with cinderblock, we just won't do it. We are dinasours down here, mentally, physically and apparently structurally. It's a sad day in Ocean City.

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Springtime in Paradise!

It's absolutely beautiful today...the sky is a beautiful blue with a few white clouds, the sun is shining brightly and while it's a little on the cooler side in the shade in the sun you can feel the warmth on your body...yes, it's gorgeous. I'm hoping the rain they keep talking about stays away, but even if it doesn't, we've had a touch of spring and I'm excited. Or perhaps my heart is racing because my accountant is calling and I'm late in giving him my books which I don't want to do because I know what he's going to say. Oh, Lordy, Lordy, I hate April 15th and the weeks leading up to it....tough time, tough time. Anyway, moving on ... Here is the picture of the 2 blocks I've managed to stitch on "Hearts of America" from Little House Needleworks. I just love this piece and it's so easy to stitch as are all Little House projects which I think is what makes them really appealing. Their designs are full of interest and yet there are no fancy stitches or fiber work to be done so it's a nice rest between stressfilled projects. The colors are good on this one and it's been a fun fast stitch. I can't wait to get to the third block, however, I have to finish the second block on my "Shores of Hawk Run" first. With my "Shores...." piece, I have created a monster in myself by changing so many of the colors. I decided to use colors I was using on my Mermaids piece on this piece for some reason which makes me change all of the colors on the second block of this piece. I did want to change some, but for some reason I've run amuck. Since we in Ocean City only think of the "blue crab" I just had to change the color of the crab. Sara suggested red, but I reminded her they are red after you cook them and since this is undersea the crab would still be the blue/green. So right now the second block looks too blue/green with the crab, seaweed and now the blue fish, however, the red coral is going to make this block really pop. Please excuse the wrinkled linen...I don't want to iron it until I'm finished. The differences between mine and the chart that I think are obvious are the difference in some of the colors, of course, but also on block one I make the seagulls smaller. To be honest, I wasn't sure if what was shown were seagulls or clouds, but Sara felt they were seagulls and I wanted it to resemble seagulls more and God knows if there is one thing I've stitched a lot it's seagulls and the water. Other than that, I didn't outline the sun in a third color and I make the rocks all shades of grey. So far on the 2nd block I've used greens on the seaweek I already had, and changed the crab to blue/green. I am changing the blues on the fish to blues I already used in the mermaid piece. But I'm loving this piece and it could be just because it's bringing out the creative side of me which I've never really utilized. Loving it!!!! Jamboree News: We are having a crisis of sorts (that comes as a surprise I know) as we have several stitchers who would like to come, but weren't here last year and therefore can't sign up until we know which stitchers from last year want to come. So I'm sending out the brochures today for Jamboree 2008 to anyone who hasn't already signed up. So..if you have already sent in your money you will not get a brochure in the next couple of days. However, if we do not have your name or deposit down, you will need to contact us before the 25th of April so we can let new people get their names in. So please, you know what happened last year...Sara about killed me for continually relaxing the policy until I had 69 (we initially stated we wouldn't take over 60) people coming. While we did reconfigure the tables and those 69 worked out fine, and Sara said we could take 69 again, but only 69 and frankly I can't go over that. I have taken a couple of reservations from new people because I knew a couple of people who wouldn't be able to attend this year. So please, even if you can't send in the deposit right away, please e-mail me, call the shop, anything to let us know you intend to come back and we'll give you until May 15th to get the deposit here. Thanks for helping us out with this....I want no problems from Sara this's painful. Well, I've got to get back to taxes, and I have a couple of stitchers who I promised I would open the shop for at 3:00 p.m., so I need to get some work done before they get here. Taking a 2 hour lunch is really working into my work schedule...well, I won't give up the lunch so I suppose I'll have to adjust the work schedule. Have a great day!

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

It's that time of year....

Yes, as summer approaches and we have more visitors coming into Ocean City I am once again astounded at the lack of consideration, respect, etc., etc., etc., the youth of today, or perhaps it's everyone has for other other people. I was coming to work one day this weekend and there was a car pulled up in the alley in front of the hotel next door with 3 people loading it with their luggage. Of course, all the doors were open so no one could pass and I pulled up to the car and sat with the motor running ($3.23/gal of gas no less)...waiting, and waiting, and waiting. No one was even using the doors on the drivers side, which was the side I needed the door closed on so I could pass. One young man was loading the trunk, the other two got in and sat in the car waiting, and no one took time to stop being a pain in my ass. Then the one finally gets done loading the trunk, comes around and stands a the door to the drivers seat, yes stands there, while he adjusts his Ipod ear phones. I hope the sob got stopped on the way home. I suppose I should be thrilled he didn't give me the finger or yell, "fat cow" which is what I usually hear from these a..holes, but then I didn't say a word to him, I just sat patiently waiting thinking, who the hell brought you up to think that you were the only one that mattered in the world and you didn't have to take anyone else into consideration because you are that important! However, after that my day got better. I don't have much time on the computer anymore because I am the only one working in the shop at this point, and even though we are still only open 4 days a week, something always comes up on one of the 3 days I'm in the office that keeps me from doing internet work. Today Sara came in to help with the mail orders as we both worked a function at our church yesterday so no one was here. It took her 3 hours to get all the more orders filled and to the post office...she was less than thrilled with me (she thought she'd be here for 1/2 hour). Since we got the Whitman charts for the tins we were in boxing tins and charts mode for the entire morning. But the good news is....most of the mail orders are speeding (I use the term loosely) their way to your door. Have fun! Now I'm back to the reality of my desk. I am going to take a picture of this mess because I know most of you can't even imagine what this looks like. I need the people from Clean House to come in and organize this thing. However, once I'm here full time in the office I should be able to do something with it....and then Mary will dump another day of mail on here and it'll look like a paper bomb went off, but nothing compares to off season and what this looks like. Unbelievable. Stitching News: I'm working like a mad stitcher on Shores of Hawk Run and Hearts of America and folks....I'm loving them both again. This is so extraordinary that I would love 4 projects in a row. Shores I'm changing so much that it's become a real project for know..finding just the color I want, etc. I'm having a ball, however, there are a few houses coming up so I'm not sure how I'll do once I get to them. I work on Shores until I get a block done and then I go to Hearts of America where I do the same thing. I can't wait to show you...I'm going to show you as I get a block done so tomorrow I will post the latest on Hearts of America. Weather news: Our weather has been typical March weather, blustery, cool or cold, overcast at times and we're just itching for spring weather, which apparently came today (although it shows possibilities of rain for the next week). Anyway, today is perfect, hot, sunny, just perfect. There are people riding bikes on the boardwalk, jackets are off, shorts are on and some even braved bare feet (a little early for that)...and the trees are in bloom on the parking lot. Yes folks...spring is here! Today! Probably gone tomorrow so we'll enjoy it while we can. It's almost 5:00 and I'm still here working (while this is not work, I consider it work related.) Haven't seen Sara since 1:00 p.m....mail room attendant is obviously not her cup of tea, but it makes her appreciate me more since it's usually my job. TV Update: I couldn't leave for the day without talking Housewives of N.J. I'm telling you people, if you aren't watching this show you are missing the biggest "hoot" on T.V. These women are so classless it makes me feel a lot better. And the couple living in Brooklyn are the biggest losers of all. Honestly, but at least they freely admit they are trying to move up in status by clinging to anyone who seem higher up on the "social ladder" than they are. Frankly, if you ask me, which you didn't but that won't stop me, these ladies, with one exception...the personal chef...are all bottom feeders. Now the chef...she's about to be informed by her boyfriend of several years that he has no intention of ever marrying her (at least that's what I'm thinking he going to say and to his credit...he has more sense than any of them...he won't discuss their arrangement in front of the cameras). So after wasting her time on him, she's got to find someone quick who wants to get married and have a family. This brings me to another subject...what is it with the unmarried woman who dates someone who clearly (to everyone else but the woman he's dating) has no intention of getting married and yet she insists eventually they will. Why wait around? We have a dear friend who's boyfriend has been telling her for years he won't ever marry her and yet she is at his beck and call. We even held an intervention (during my father's funeral reception no about class) 3 years ago trying to get her to see the light, but she keeps insisting he doesn't mean it. Meanwhile she is getting older and she wants a child. I nagged her so much Sara had to ask me to stop because she was afraid she wouldn't come over to the house anymore. It was hard (you know I don't shut my mouth easily) but I stopped saying anything, but I'm telling you it's painful to watch women humiliate themselves this way. I don't know why we do this to ourselves. Are we that desparate for a man? As a woman whose husband walked out after 31 years (I know that surprises everyone...for who would leave such an articulate and gracious person as myself) it's not so bad being alone. I love watching the shows I want to watch, cooking when I feel like it...enjoying the silence when it comes, and stitching at all hours without rebuke. Yes, it's a good feeling. It is not as if you don't miss another person being there at times, but the fun times so outweigh the other times you just don't mind. We must show our daughters that sometimes being alone is better than being with someone that doesn't love us, respect us and honor us. And on that preachy note I'm out of here. Have a great night.

Friday, March 21, 2008

Where Stitcher's Gather Must Have

Oh, my dear, the new charts are in from Victoria Sampler and Thea has outdone herself with "Where Stitchers Gather". You know how I am about smalls, but honestly, what I love about this is the theme...and how perfect this is for those of us who belong to stitching groups. This is so perfect for secret santa gifts (a little pricey perhaps, and a few too many pieces, but parts would be good too). Anyway, take a look at it and see what you think...I love it. We sold a couple today as we were ahhhing and oohing over the chart. The thread and charm pack is pricey but it's filled with all kinds of specialty fibers. As it is Easter Week in Ocean City, we've had people here all week with their families, but because the weather has been iffy at best I haven't been open until today and we had more traffic than a Friday usually has and some friends from the city are down, Ruth K. and Barbara C. and we always like to see them and catch up on what they are working on. Nothing is more fun than talking stitching...getting ideas from each other and comparing what we're working on. I think I'll be finished with my first block tonight, Shores of Hawk Run, and will take a break to work on "Heart of America" which I have also one block completed. I'm so addicted to these pieces I woke up at 4:53 a.m. today, thought I could either go back to sleep or work on my needlework...and you know which one I picked, but by 6:30 a.m. I began thinking about working all day with a lack of sleep and decided I'd lay down and take a little nap. I woke up and it was 9:52 a.m. and I had 8 minutes to get dressed, brush my teeth, and get to work. Thank God I only had 2 blocks to go and its and easy commute with little traffic so I arrived...a few minutes late (about 5) but I don't think anyone realized least no one was waiting so I opened up like nothing was wrong. But I spent the rest of the day praying no one would come to me and say, "did you realize you have your shirt on inside out or backwards" (and I've done both believe it or not) fact I kept my jacket on all day just in case. I'm not sure if I have underwear on I ran so fast. We did get our Hoffman order so all the charts for tins will be in the mail tomorrow along with the tins themselves...and I thank everyone for their patience. I have misplaced an email and can't find it for the life of me. Someone asked me for information because they were starting a stitching group in Annapolis...if you were the person that e-mailed me, please e-mail me again as I have the information you were seeking...and I apologize for the faux pas. Technology, still a mystery to me at times. Anyway, I'm going to run home to stitch....I'll talk to you tomorrow...have a wonderful Easter filled with chocolates and stitching.

Thursday, March 20, 2008

A Mystery Pattern for 2008

Just got word about a "Mystery Sampler"...brought to you from Blackbird Designs. The have to collect the Loose Feathers Club charts. There will be 6 charts released as usual in 2008 with a cross stitch pattern included. The twist is that at the end of the program (year) we will receive a "map" to put together a Mystery Sampler...i.e. a motif from each of the 6 projects will be arranged to form a bonus, 7th pattern (hence the mystery). So if you collect these charts you much remember to hold on to them in order to do the Mystery Sampler. Now while many of us hold on to patterns, there are those who loan them out and then lose track of them. I remembered to take a picture of my progress to date on the Shores of Hawk Run Hollow....I'm loving this piece even though there are times when I feel I will never get the water done, or the rocks done, but I look at the sun and it's so funny I just keep right on stitching. I've used about 7 different overdyed greys on the rocks under the lighthouse and love the look. I dropped the sun down to two colors instead of using one color to outline and love it as well. This is just pure this point. I really can't wait to get home at night to work on it....even though I have other pieces to work on I can't seem to leave this one alone. Next is the ABC Sampler...I'm waiting for the next 2 charts to come out so I can finish it. Loved this one and can't wait to finish it. I haven't put the charms on yet...want to wait until I'm done. Each time I finish a Drawn Thread it makes me want to do another...they are delicate and beautiful when finished.
You can also use your imagination on these, switching out colors to colors that really suit your tastes or the room in which you will be displaying it. But a piece like this is most important due to the lessons you learn. The great variety of stitches which you may use down the road on another project. I'm often refer back to a piece that's now hanging up to see what a stitch looks like. Teaching pieces, that what these turn out to be. Anyway, these are just a couple of pieces, I'll get more tomorrow to show you. I'm pooped as I've spent the better part of today reconcilling my bank account so I can take my records to the accountant (don't want to do it too early or they might find something wrong...they can always find something if I give them to them to early (at least that's my theory). Anyway, I do well until July and then I don't do any reconcilations until January or in this case March. Then I just struggle to get them right, but today I did Oct-March...I'm done, thank God I'm done. Of course I didn't get done without calling the bank twice...I have to tell you I'm not loving them giving me copies of checks instead of the cancelled check back. But at least I'm getting something to show. Poor Mary just doesn't give bookkeeping any thought because she doesn't really own anything, or have a store. So last year she and her husband filed with an accountant they picked out of the phone book (I guess) and she thought she was done early, got her refund and was going her way thinking she was happy because she didn't have to jump through the hoops Sara and I did until the hammer came down...she got a form regarding the stock from the hotel (something she never gave any consideration to). I use to get her stuff done for her by my accountant since he already was a part of stock transfers, etc., so when last year it was new to Mary she thought she knew what she was doing. So then she had to go back to her accountant, give them the tax forms regarding her shares and they had to amend the whole damn thing. This year she's going back to my accountant, so she asked me about what proof she needed on things. I said, your stubbs would be enough to reconstruct your bills, stubs and copies of all the bills. She does banking on-line and while they give you the statements monthly, they just show amounts (according to her) and she never gets anything back to look at and print out to prove. She says she can print out a page showing the amounts that were paid...but what the hell good does that do you? I'm sure IRS would be digging that. Of course, since she and her husband don't really own anything I really don't think IRS is going to be too concerned about their money but she's learned a valuable lesson. Oh, they will get her copies of her payments showing who was paid....for 14 cents a check. (yea baby, that's how they make their money). I'm telling you tax time is a pain for us all. While I take my files in neatly to the accountant (of course usually in a shopping bag...I'm sure Donald Trump does the same thing)...I had a good friend who would just throw receipts on her dining room table (they couldn't have used it to eat on if you paid them)...anyway, her house was a wreck and I mean that. You would go in and not know where to sit because there was no space to sit down...everything was covered in mail, newspaper, books, crap, and more crap. I would go to her house and ask her how the hell she could stand to live like that...but she just wasn't bothered by it. (I have a hell of a nerve at this point as the Christmas tree with it's lovely red cover is still laying on my living room fact I almost layed my pieces on it to take the picture so you could see it once again). Anyway, she took her receipts and everything else to the accountant in shoe boxes, pizza boxes, whatever she had laying around and....she didn't put them in any kind of order. Can you imagine having to do her records. She was a pip! Weather's windy as hell with no sign of letting up...however, it's also sunny and hovering around 45 degrees (temps say 55 but wind chill factors in). Anyway, rain is forecasted for the upcoming holiday weekend...sorry about that...but if you are in the area stop by and see me. I'll be the one behind the counter working on my needlework, unless Sara is there and then I'll be the one working (I feel guilty if I sit when she's there). Talk to you tomorrow...have a great evening.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Stepping out of the box

Yes folks, I've been doing this more and more and with the "Shore of Hawk Run Hollow" I've not only stepped out of the box, I've gone way around the bend. Of course you wouldn't know that because I've yet to take a picture but last night I finally finished the sun and began working on the rocks under the lighthouse and I'm loving this. This is fun is a whole other way than the Mermaids of the Sea or the ABC by Drawn's picking different colors and making decisions that will make this a collaboration with Carriage House Samplings (not that they know anything about my collaborating with them) a truly exciting experience. I spend a good deal of time just searching for that right shade, which I've never really worried about before. Now will this happen on every project? Hell no..I'm not that anal...and most of the designs I love just as they are. I also love Shores of Hawk Run too, or I wouldn't have picked it out, but I'm loving my subtle changes as well. Living at the beach, with a stone jetty right in front of our building, I've looked at rock formations in the sea for over 50 years, so our stone jetty has remained more shades of gray, so that's what I'm talking about. Subtle but make all the difference to me. So tomorrow, yes I swear tomorrow I'm going to start posting the pictures. Also thanks to Ellen S. up in New York (held hostage in her apartment) for telling me how to fix my link from St. Patrick's day blog. If I had known she was going to be that helpful I would have requested that she be held hostage much earlier. Thanks also to Stasi B. who while visiting her daughter has offered to pick up more tins for me. Yes, before I'm done I'm going to have more tins than brains (not really a contest is it?), so I will be the go-to for tins by summer as this particular tin is a spring only offering from Russell Stover. Did you see the "show"...Housewives of New York" last night? Honestly, these people are just "One Hot Mess." The only semi-normal person is the female chef and I'm still questioning her, but I think Meredith is almost normal...but then she's not trying to impress anyone except her boyfriends family (and then who doesn't). I loved when Jill facing the camera actually said, "I don't talk about money, it's just crass." That's crass but going on national television and putting your stuff out there isn't? What the hell are these people thinking. They all look like idiots...and I'm going to love the next one where the countess' children get head lice. Oh, yes, how we like to see the mighty who brag fall. This countess is so stuck on her name she feels she has to mention the fact that she's a countess on every show. Get over yourself already. This show proves one can buy you "crap" but it can't buy you "class" since there isn't a classy broad on here. Well, the verdict is still out on the chef, but I don't hold out much hope for her....after all she's on the same show with the other group of harpies. I was so busy watching "The Biggest Loser" I missed major parts of Dancing with the Stars. Oh, my God, I'm going to have to put multiple sets in my living room so I can have each channel set to one of my reality shows...I'm missing too much. (does this seem odd to I starting to seem pathetic to anyone else beside myself?) Anyway, I did see Priscilla Presley and Kristy and I found them to be amazing. I really thought Kristy, as a professional ice skater, would do well and did she ever. I was worried about Priscilla (we're on a first name basis now ... not sure if she realizes it...but we should be) but she did really well at 60...I look at her, look in the mirror, look at her, look in the mirror...I must be God's funny little joke...but that's O.K., I'm willing to play along with him as long as he opens the door when I arrive. I just wish I could do those dances...don't they look like fun? And the exercise...oh, wait a minute, maybe I don't want to do those dances. I just played the show on my computer so I could see the first 3 dancers...(am I getting more pathetic as the day wears on?) so now I can really say it's a crap shoot on who is going home. I hope the height challenged Broadway babe doesn't go because she is a hoot and a half. No one should be having that much fun, or should they. I've been to the dentist this morning, my mouth is now killing me...I'm going home to heal...catch you tomorrow. Have a great evening stitching and watching Top Chef.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Tin Saga goes on and on and on

I got a call a little while ago from Mary saying that Jackie J. (one of our Stitch 'n Bitch members) was trying to get in touch with me. I looked at Sara and said, "This can't be good...something has happened to Kay F." (Jackie's best friend and also a member of our Stitch 'n Bitch group). So I called her right away and Jackie is in Florida on vacation, but she and her husband stopped at 2 Russell Stover candy stores to check on the green tin situation and they found a treasure trove. So she asked, "how many do you want?" So Jackie is bringing 3 dozen green tins back to Maryland for me (she may eat the candy because that isn't so important to us) but we'll have green tins when she gets back people...crisis averted for now. And the other good news is...this is a tin that has been in their line for the last 5 years and they expect it to stay in their line, however, it is a spring tin if you don't get your tin this year...don't can get the stitching done this year and pick up your tin next year. Thanks are a prince! oops that would be Princess. I just can't let the day go by without commenting on "Dancing with the Stars." You know I love a lot of these reality (?) shows and my Survivor is just not that exciting yet (although with another person volunteering to leave it's getting there) so I'm searching for a show I can get excited about. While I didn't watch Dancing for the first 2 years, I'm on board now and love to watch the struggle. I give each of these stars credit for showing up, feeling the burn, and taking the comments from the's such a "hoot." Apparently it is also a great way to lose weight (perhaps I should start dancing non-stop.) Anyway, the first night started last night with the men and tonight the women take their turn. Now Priscilla Presley is the oldest woman, she's 60. I looked at her and I know what I look like and since I'm 60 I just have to ask, "What the hell happened to me." I have to say I've seen pictures of her in magazines and thought she had gone under the knife perhaps one time too many, however, last night she looked wonderful. I can't wait to see how she does, although how can a 60 year old compete in anything physical with a 20 year old. Really, let's be honest even someone who is fit at 60 I would think would find it a terrible challenge to compete one on one with someone 20. And the match ups are interesting. This years contestant men are really tall and when matched with a female dancer who is a lot shorter I'm not sure the dance works. The winner from last year who is short is paired with one of the tallest stars and I don't know how he can be expected to keep the proper stance when he has to bend over practically to dance with her. Last night they told him to keep his shoulders back...well that will only happen if he lifts her off the floor and carries her. Also, in the 3 years I've been watching men have always won. While we all know I'm behind the women's movement to a point...look at the techical stuff the women have to do as opposed to the men. It's the woman who are executing the move moves while the men swing them around, do the lifts, etc. But the fancy footwork is always the woman. So the men working with the professional women have such an advantage. As usual we woman have to fight harder. While I love the show now I do wish they would cut out all the bullshit. I don't want to have to sit through 40 minutes of crap to see 20 minutes of dance, but inevitably on that 2nd night that's what happens. But it's still a "hoot". Sara told me to remind people that because Easter is falling so early this year we will not be open full time again until April 15th...or until I get the office cleaned up which ever comes first (I think we can count on April 15th cause you know this office is never going to be cleaned up). Debbie L. took off this morning amid tears from Sara and I, and we both wish her well as she goes in for foot surgery in a couple of weeks. The good news...she will be out of work and sitting on her behind for at least 3 weeks stitching. Just think of all the projects she is going to finish. Why she might even get a tote empty of projects. Good luck Debbie...keep us posted.

Monday, March 17, 2008

Happy St. Patrick's Day

Happy St. Patrick's Day one and all!!!!! In Ocean City it's been celebrated all weekend so I'm about ready to move on, however, one more day won't kill me. The weather has taken a dip in Temperature so it's a good thing I didn't put away my winter woolies,, but the sun is shining and the forecast shows us getting close to 70 by Wednesday, so I'm hopeful. We had a gorgeous day on Saturday, however, Sunday turned into a rainy, blowing, wet mess of a day, just the right kind of day for stitching. Debbie L. and her husband came down for a "mini retreat" (at this point we're calling everything a retreat) and Debbie spent Sunday in the shop going over the Lauren Sauer project with Sara and shopping. She and I do a lot of the same thing so we were comparing projects. On the way down, in the car, she almost completed the border on the Maiden's of the Sea piece...the entire the car!!!! I have a hard time stitching in my favorite chair, I can't stitch in a car at all. I started the Shores of Hawk Run and since it's a bit daunting for me on 40 ct., I decided to stitch on 36 ct. and give myself a break. Then to make it even more confusing, I decided against DMC and silk and I'm using overedyed threads which I just feel this piece is screaming for. So we spent some time yesterday figuring on which threads to replace. Looking ahead I'm also seeing a few things I will be changing on the piece so I've decided that each time I get a block done I'll show it to you so you can judge me (oops I mean judge which way you like it). I did get the first block done on the Little House Needleworks "Heart of America" piece and I just love this piece. So I've got my 2 pieces in progress and hopefully will enjoy these as much as I loved the last two. Debbie is back and I wish you could see the stitching tote (one of many) she has with her today. It's a Vera Bradley Large bag stuffed with a multitude of projects, some not started, others started but not near completion and then those which are just stitches away from completion. Like all stitchers she takes many projects with her on trips so she has a lot of how much stitching actually gets done is anyone's guess, although I left her sitting at the table stitching along with Sara. Me, while I'd love to join them I'm working. Got to run...keep on stitching and smiling. I'm off and running...

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Spring has sprung!

Yes, it's spring in Ocean City, the sun is shining, the sea is glistening, people are walking the boards, surfers are out in force and shops up and down the boardwalk are starting to open up for the season. Why, just yesterday the Alaska Stand opened next door so you know we had to have our first hot dog and french fries of the year....ummm goood! Yesterday turned out to be a play day for us here in Salty Yarns. While we did manage to serve a couple of customers, Pat W. came by for a play date. She and Sara were working on a kit Mary gave me for Christmas which is felting. I wanted to try this, the kit was on sale so I showed it to Mary and said, get this for me for Christmas please and she did it. Pat came to Stitch 'n Bitch Tuesday night and said she had tried felting so we set up the play date. I handed everything over to Sara so that if it didn't turn out I could blame her. She took the bait and ended up felting all afternoon. I still don't have my squirrel and for a while it looked like she was making a felted penis, but as the day progressed the form became less penis like and more squirrel like so I do believe we may see a squirrel yet. But it's an interesting art form, reminds me of punch needle, repetitive motion of up and down with needles. Although with punch needle the design is outlined and with felting you are actually trying to form it into a design. O.K., perhaps it's nothing like punch needle, but I'll let you know if we ever get it completed. (notice that if it's completed it will be done by us, and if it never progresses any further it's because Sara didn't complete it.) Yesterday I went home directly from work, sat on the sofa and finished Maidens of the Sea...well at least the stitching I've got to try to put it together....I'm excited! And since I finished both projects, plus the Just Nan Ladybug, I pulled out the latest collaboration between Little House Needleworks and Crescent Colours, "America" and started stitching that. But I need something else in the rotation, so I think I'm going pull out a UFO and also put "Barnabee's Bride" in the's exciting isn't it when you get to start a new project, even if it's an old project the thought of getting something else out of one of my totes is too exciting for words. I'll keep you posted on my progress. I've got to get some more scanned onto the site so I'm leaving for a while...have a wonderful weekend, and I'll talk to you later.

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Glorious in the neighborhood...

Yes the sun is out, the sea is glistening, the temperature is rising (today is suppose to be hovering in the mid 50's), and spring is just around the corner. I almost walked to work today, but my purse is too heavy to walk the two blocks with so I drove instead, but I thought about it so that counts. Yesterday we moved more fibers around (and around and around and around), but since some stitchers had called on Tuesday to ask if they could come on in to the shop, we also were open (as many of you know I'll open anytime for anyone...) and as luck would have it we also had another call from a local wanting to bring in someone from out of town, so we had a fun day yesterday. I have almost as much fun as the ladies do..I get such a kick out of stitchers and their stories. So thanks to Ellen S., Janet L., Karen B., Judith J., Marie C., Sarah S., Rosemary K., Patricia A., & Helen S., and all the other ladies for stopping by and making our day. We had fun and I hope you did too, and I hope you enjoy all your new "goodies." I'm also getting numerous e-mails regarding the Whitman's tins. I can't thank Ellen S. who's held hostage in New York city for working so hard on my behalf finding tins, getting info on blogging, etc., for me...Ellen your diligence is appreciated. Also heard from Cynthia R. who has tracked some down in Maine and apparently they don't give a damn about the heat as they will ship. Heat...I still can't get over that woman in Virginia...are you folks having different temps than we are here? Cause I'm telling you it's warm and sunny during the day, but not 76 degrees that she was talking about...and how long would the ride have been anyway as I found out this store is between Ocean City and Williamsburg which is approximately 3 hours. So we're not talking sitting on a truck for days...and if it's UPS we're talking just a couple of days to begin with...oh my God, you got me started and I don't think I can shut up. If you don't want to ship something, if it's just too much trouble then say, "I'm sorry I don't feel like hauling my ass to the post office with your lousy candy tins and if you can't come into the store than you aren't going to see our tins." But don't, for God's sake, come up with "it's too hot to ship this time of year." First she didn't ask if I was north or south, or if I was two doors away or 6 states know the more I think about this the madder it makes me. She's obviously got more money than I do...hell I open the store for a skein of floss if someone needs it, I'd drive the tins to a customer if I had to (we actually thought about driving a dollhouse when we sold miniatures to Baltimore for a customer because the shipping would have been too high for her). Oh, well, I need to get over this...but you know what I mean. Customer service people...that's what I'm talking about. We can buy goods anywhere...what we're looking for are people who appreciate our business and let us know that by treating us like they appreciate our business. This brings me to another area of Customer Service. My adorable niece, Kelly, sent me a bouquet of absolutely gorgeous flowers...they arrived in the shop while I was busy with a salesman. I said thank you and the delivery person sort of stood there and looked like she was waiting for a tip, which I didn't produce and so she left. First I didn't have my purse with me as it was in the office, but I could still have come up with the money out of the drawer if I had to I guess, but I didn't do that. After she left and the salesman had gone I started feeling guilty and said something to Sara. She said not to worry about it and I should have to tip a delivery person in the first place. It's a weird area. Tipping in this country (we've discussed it before) is so out of hand. In self serve places, carry out counters, all over the place where we are actually doing the work ourselves we are being asked for tips. If I have to drive to your establishment and stand in line to pick up my order why do I have to tip you...what service did you provide? You cooked it, but then isn't that built into the cost of the item to the customer? If I stay overnight in a hotel do I tip. No, because the room wasn't cleaned for me; however, if I stay 2 nights or longer then yes I am required to tip, because after the first night the housekeeper has to come in to make the bed, vacumn and whatever else they care to do. But flower delivery....I suppose you could call and say you have flowers for me to pick up but I'm sure then you would put the container on the counter saying ,"tips appreciated." I was a waitress (before you had to pay waitresses) so I appreciate a tip, but I also appreciated the fact that the tip was for services rendered and it was adjusted on how well you performed. Does anyone care about performance anymore? It certainly doesn't appear to be the case. We've also had a strange thing happening when we go to lunch. We are creatures of habit and tend to go to the same places. In one of the places we are waited on by a woman who knows my daughters and she never charges us for the tea or soda or ice cream floats we have with lunch. The first time it happened I mentioned it to my daughter and she said "Mom, just leave the money you would have paid for the float as extra tip." Now when I'm in a restaurant and the service is alright with me, but the management feels it isn't up to par and they don't charge me for something I do take the cost of that item and tack it on to the tip so the waiter is the one who benefits (remember I use to be one). If the service stinks forget about it, I still tip but I don't tip 20%. Service is good it's at least 20% or better depending. Anyway, we've been back to that restaurant now 3 times and each time she's given us the drinks...and she doesn't own the business. When it happened again on Tuesday, I said to Mary, "This isn't right and I'm not sure what I should do." Mary then said, "Mom it's O.K., all bartenders do it." And I mentioned that just because everyone does it doesn't make it right, and then she tried this, "the owners of bars allow the bartenders to give so many drinks to customers free and that's what I'm talking about." Well, I didn't know an owner would give anyone permission to give away product. I don't I don't allow it, that's called stealing. If I want to give something away, well that's O.K. because it's mine, I paid for it. So by giving the price of the drinks to the waitress along with 20% makes this a reward doesn't it for stealing from her employer? I don't know, I just don't feel right and to be perfectly honest I don't want to eat there anymore. On the upside, we just had a Panera Bread open in the White Marlin Mall..yea!!! It's busy as I don't know what, but they did a bang up job running it so it's quick in and out which I love and no waitress to confuse me on this drink issue. But enough on tipping already...I won't tip to delivery flowers since in my opinion that's the job is to get the flowers to the customer, or isn't it. If you are a florist and feel differently e-mail me and perhaps I'll change my mind. On the shop front, the Miss Penny dolls finally arrived as well as Barnabee's Bridge and she's sparkly and bright so come on by and meet her. I've got to taxes are calling my name.

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Here's the cookie receipe

We had our monthly Stitch 'n Bitch session, I mean meeting last night and the ladies were surprised to see that changes were taking place. Sara and I got the fibers moved to their new home and we put up a table where they were for the meeting so it was like meeting in a cave, plus we were using Sara's bar table and a card table in place of the huge table we had over on the fabric side so it was like being in Alice and Wonderland with small tables...but we managed and had a great time. Joyce forgot to bring her enameled Lady bug so I couldn't finish putting her piece together but she was a great sport when I related what I had done with her piece so I appreciated the fact that she didn't get upset (of course I found her piece and finished putting it together so that might have had something to do with it)...and even left the finished pieces here until next time when she'll bring the Ladybug for me to put them in. Anyway, that ended well. Connie brought the most beautiful applique and quilted...quilt, just gorgeous for our advice and you know I didn't hesitate to tell her my opinion, Jennifer brought in a finished pillow she made with the cutest french design on it and the pillow backing was just perfect for it...good job ladies. Hedy C. brought in her finished camel, which is one piece of the JanLynn nativity scene she's stitching. She's now completed the camel, Mary and she took Joseph home with her to start next. By Christmas she's going to have a stitched nativity! Jennifer also was in charge of refreshments last night and we were once again delighted with a couple different types of cookies, brownies, grapes and 2 kinds of cheese cubes....another eating opportunity and we sure did enjoy it. Thanks Jennifer. Now before I forget, I was telling the ladies before Christmas about a cookie I made, Love it a lot, and kept going back to the container for one more until I gave up, brought the container into the living room and ate them until I got sick and then I was able to stop eating them. I made them for the Superbowl party and the ladies said, "We know which cookie you couldn't stop eating" because they also loved the cookie. They asked for the receipe and we kept forgetting to give it to them, so I'm putting it here and I know you will love them! Beacon Hill Cookies
1 Cup Chocolate chips
2 Egg whites
dash of salt
1/2 Cup sugar
1/2 Teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon vinegar
3/4 cup chopped walnuts (I've also used difference both great)
Preheat oven to 275 or 300 degrees F. (I believe I used 300)..Melt the chocolate chips and let them cool. Beat the egg whites and the dash of salt until it is foamy. Then gradually add the sugar until it is stiff. Once the mixture is stiff, add the extract and vinegar. Fold in the melted chocolate and walnuts. Place a spoonful of the beaten mixture onto a greased cookie sheet and bake for about 1/2 hour. Enjoy ladies....and bring me some!

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Whitman Tins Emergency

OK stitchers...we're having an issue with Russell Stover and the Whitman's tin, # 7164 for the new chart "My First Sewing Box and Scissor Fob"...while these can be ordered on-line...they are sold out a lot and you really have to check back daily. Then you can't pick your color and while for me that's not such a big issue I know for some it will be, so I called Russell Stover and talked to their top dog in the shipping department and they said you can't pick colors unless you go into a store, gave me the closest store near Ocean City...its a Russell Stover Store located at 23361 Business Center Ct. in Ruther Glen, Va. (yes that's the closest according to them) I called old Ruther Glen, Va., spoke with someone who wasn't top dog and put me on hold for more moments than I care to be on hold, but I was on the Whitman Tin hunt and I would have waited for an hour. Anyway, I asked if they could ship me the tins and she said no it was too hot! Now I didn't want to insult Russell Stover by saying we didn't give a damn about their chocolates so I decided I had gone as far as I could go...but if anyone lives near Ruther Glen, we need tins people...we have stitchers who want to stitch this piece and can't get their green tins. Right now in house we have 2 of each color, Green, Yellow and Pink....and I'll be ordering more as they show them in if you don't mind a color other than Green, give me a call and we'll hook you up. I say other than green because I think Jean wants the 2 I have but I'll be e-mailing her to check this out....Now I'm really going back to work.

Thanks and Apologies to Joyce C!

Well, as usually happens with me kaos has ruled since I last spoke with you because of my lack of organizational skills, or should I say my reorganizing gone wrong! At our January Stitch 'n Bitch, Joyce C. asked for help with a few of her projects, just minor questions regarding our opinions, etc., and I was unable to concentrate (I have the concentration as well as memory of a gnat) on one particular project so I said, "Oh, Joyce, let me take it home and I'll work on it when I can concentrate." Those are words to heed my friend, because while I have all the good intentions in the world is sometimes caotic and well, it's me...enough said. I remember taking it home, I knew I put it in a bag of my stitching stuff (but then I have approximately 50 bags of stitching stuff), in the living room (these are my most recent "have to do's"), but I remember thinking to myself, I should put it in the tote I carry with me or I might not remember what I did with it...I think you see where I'm going with this! Anyway, last month we got home from Nashville and I didn't think of it until the night of Stitch 'n Bitch and so I told Joyce I'd bring it to the next Stitch 'n Bitch. And the hunt began. First the panic when I searched my recent tote and didn't find the package. One problem was I was looking for a small bag and Joyce had handed me a large ziplock bag, which I never remembered at all. I paniced but then searched the other bags (embarrassingly more than a couple) in my living room, then the 5 large cabinets in my entertainment cabinet, then back in the "sewing/junk/master bedroom" and then I was in full panic. I spoke with Sara who just looks at me in times of stress and says, "It will be O.K. mom, you'll find it." What I really need is for Sara to bitch slap me a few times across the head to rattle the memory loose, but she's hesitant to do that since heritance is an issue here, and I dangle that carrot whenever the occasion arises, but that's a whole other subject. Anyway, each night I'd search again, then thoughts like, "What if I threw it away by mistake" starting creeping into my thinking...but then knowing I don't throw anything away that really wasn't much of a fear. I wish I threw things away. Anyway, Monday night I gave up and began stitching the project myself (I had one in my "todo" bag anyway)...and finished it in a couple of nights but then the thought of putting it together was daunting, but last night I knew the end was near as tonight is Stitch 'n Bitch. I knew I'd have to admit to Joyce what I had done, and hoped the pain would be eased with the presentation of mine to her finished. But do we ever want someone else's work when we've done the project ourselves...well maybe we wouldn't care at times but to admit such a faux pas was daunting to me. But I finished the project, Lady Scarlet, the enameled ladybug from Just Nan in which you have a stitched needle case and pin cushion, and spent an hour patting myself on the back for getting it done and it's adorable...gorgeous and then I kept thinking, well I'll certainly enjoy Joyce's whenever I find it and put it together. I also finished the last released section of the ABC Sampler until the final two sections are released, and you know what that means. I get to put a new project into rotation. So I started searching my closest totes and as I was pulling out project bags, I see something that looked like the pattern pieces for the needlebook for Lady Scarlet. I pull the bag out and my God, it's Joyce C.'s Lady Scarlet. I sat there for a few minutes thinking, I have to put another one together, but I enjoyed the process and decided to get right on it while the knowledge of putting it together was fresh, so I spent another hour on finishing and got Joyce's done as well. Yippee!!! Two finishes on one night....but I have another needle case I'm giving to Carolyn...there is only so much hell I can endure. But anyway...I feel like a new person, almost, having Joyce's Ladybug to hand over tonight. I haven't blogged lately because Sara and I decided this weekend would be a great time to move all the fibers over to the fabric section and move the table out. I don't know why we always do these moves so close to Stitch 'n Bitch, but we do. We had really bad weather, a north easter' this weekend so we weren't really that busy. So we began the big move and of course today we're scrambling trying to get enough done that we can have Stitch 'n Bitch here. I tripped going down the hotel hallway because the boys, (maintenance crew) left a piece of carpeting rolled up there (it's been here all winter) but today I tripped, went flying down the hall and spread eagled on the floor. First....I had to pee...yes, of course slamming down on my stomach certainly didn't help that issue and each time I moved so did it. So I called Sara on my cell, cried to her that I was down and couldn't get she came running. Of course I looked like a beached whale laying there and after she chuckled (which she will deny but I heard her...and she laughs whenever I fall) she asked if I was alright then suggested bringing Vernon in to help raise the ship...but I kept refusing because I knew I would pee on my self and didn't want Vernon in on that act. I embarrass myself enough around him to begin with, so I just wanted to lay there in my agony and figure out what to do. I sent Sara home to get me a change of clothes because I just knew I was going to need that...and while she was gone I struggled to my know it's not getting up so much as getting on my knees to get up. Boy, I'm telling you this weight on my knees is a killer. But I finally got up, and was none the worse for wear...I do have a bruised and perhaps a little swollen finger (the middle one no less...would you expect anything else?) but other than that....I'll live to see another day. So tonight is Stitch 'n Bitch and we're ready for it....well, the shop is a mess, the floor needs sweeping, the racks aren't done...I guess we're not as ready as I thought. But..we'll be here none the less working like a servant. By the way...I know we usually open up full time again Easter weekend, but this year we are not!!!! Folks it's just too early for me so I've decided to open up full time beginning April 11th. So starting April 11th we're open everyday from 10:00 - 4:00 pm. Well, I've got to get back to the threads....will talk if I ever get this job done....I'm in thread hell!

Thursday, March 6, 2008

You have got to see this show....

If you haven't watched, "New York Housewives" on Bravo you are missing the most obnoxious nouveau money people ever, and that is not a compliment. You know with the strike (oh, hell before the strike too) I have become addicted to many of the reality shows (not all, but darn close to all..still can't do Big Brother..but I digress)..anyway, with Survivor which use to be my favorite, having no one left that I can cheer on I was floundering in the reality show genre. However, these New York women beat anything I've ever seen. First let me say this...where I am from we have those born with money and those who earned their money later on...and there is a big difference. Those born with money just do not discuss it, nor do they flaunt it. But the women on this show, hell they'd make a dress out of it if they had any skills at all, and might I add they do not. I have never seen such wastes of air in my life as these broads, and they give all women everywhere a bad name. As far as I can tell not one of these women earned their own money, they are all married to money, except one, the chef and frankly she's almost too normal for this group and it shows. So we will leave her out of the discussion and just assumed she walked into the wrong show (I also know I've seen her on another reality show I just can't pin point it...was it the Martha Stewart wannabe show?) Anyway, we're only discussing the rest...the Countess of whatever proudly spouts how she became a countess by marriage. Now that's O.K., nice explanation but when the chef and she go to get in a car the chef introduces her to the driver and I thought the Countess would have a stroke. The Chef introduced her informally...can you imagine the nerve. Now the Countess is from the states, grew up here, had no title or money prior to the "big" marriage, and as far as I can tell no skills. So she marries the count and all of a sudden in her mind she is a big deal. Too much people...she's too much! But...not half as obnoxious as the other idiot women who try to up-one each other in homes, fashion and everything else. I think the funnest pair are the two who live not in New York city, but Brooklyn and they are true wannabes...they wannabe like the others on the show and feel they are moving along toward that goal, but I have to tell will never make it. These people are so pompous....hired a French nanny so that their 2 boys would be bilingual and learn French because as she says, "It's a disservice to your children if they don't know more than one language" and while that may be true, the boys are not even old enough to go to school. And the thongs these two wear in St. Barts are not to be believed people... And attitude...while all of them have it, you have to see this team shop for clothes. He sits while she goes in, puts the dress on and then comes out and models, I don't mean show, I mean models the clothes for him like she's on a catwalk. First of all, who the hell has this kind of time? And they discuss each outfit as if it were the plot of a murder mystery. Anyway, if you haven't caught this waste of an hour, you just have to. It's just too much fun to make fun of. That's another thing. My mother always said, "don't air your dirty laundry in public" and these people air everything. They have no pride, and no shame...they depend on people servicing them and enjoy giving their workers as much shit as they can pile on them. The countess puts the luggage out in the hallway, but it's up to the poor housekeeper who is 10 times smaller than the "Countess" to haul everything down the stairs and to the car. Anyway, please watch this and we'll discuss after the next episode where the St. Barts couple make a monumental faux pas with the jet set they so shamelessly think they are part of. Oh, what fun this is. Other than that, my life is about stitching, working and yesterday watching out for C.J. I knew I would have to check his homework which sent chills up and down my spine because I've forgotten more geometry, etc than I remember. But luckily when he handed it to me it was easy stuff...Thank God. I got through the homework maze easily and then it was waiting for Mary and Brian to get home. C.J. is no problem but like all kids he channel surfs continually. I don't like commercials anymore than anyone else, but honestly C.J. was on his phone the entire time flipping channels every 3 seconds...I'm telling you I was getting seasick. Finally after about 1 hr of me wanting to hit him over the head with the clicker, he handed it to me and went into his room to finish his conversation. A conversation where apparently you didn't have to speak. After holding the phone to his ear for 15 minutes with no conversation I asked, "Is someone on the other end talking?" And of course there was someone on the other end, but apparently they were just channel surfing together. Ah, yes, youth...don't want to go there again. Anyway, around 9:15 p.m. Mary and Brian finally arrived home from the 11:30 a.m. funeral. I was never so glad to see anyone in my I could stitch again. So I pull out the ABC Sampler and I'm looking at it feeling spectacular to be almost done when I notice something. I think I spoke about tearing out a section and re-doing it the other night...I shouldn't have bothered, since now I have 2 other sections...but we're talking 1 thread here, so I've made the decision to ignore it and just move on. So I started the STU and hope to have it finished next week, because I have something else I need to finish before next week, but couldn't start it because I didn't have all the floss at home. I can't believe I don't have every color at home, but apparently I don't. Anyway, have a great day, enjoy this glorious weather (yesterday it was hot, sunny and 64 degrees), and I'll talk to you later. Don't forget Survivor is on tonight (I may not enjoy it as much now, but I'll still watch it.)

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

I'm a human alarm clock....

Or so I thought. Mary (my youngest) and her husband Brian had to go to Baltimore for a funeral and Mary asked if C.J. (her 14 year old stepson) could stay with me as he'd rather not go to the funeral. Of course I said yes....and I went and purchased the appropriate snack food (cheesecake, coffee cake, cookies, soda) and when she asked if I had an alarm clock I proudly said, "I don't need an alarm clock...I'm a human alarm clock Mary and I'm always up before 6:00 a.m. I'll get C.J. up don't worry about it. Fortunately, they didn't buy that line and brought an alarm clock with them when they came down. So you can imagine my shock, dismay and embarrassment when I was awakened this morning at 7:10 by a pounding on my front door...C.J. returning from the bus stop having missed the bus. Poor soul didn't even have breakfast...crap! Anyway, I said, "did you eat" and he said, No so I said, "O.K., get your oatmeal ready and you can eat it in the car on the way to school. We've got plenty of time to get you there so don't worry.." and off we went in the car. I did get him there in plenty of time and knew I had to let Mary know I screwed up. Then I get in the office and get a call from Sara asking, "Did you know Roy is in the hospital where he has been since yesterday? Ms. Pat called and told Mary yesterday." Which I didn't know since no one bothered to tell me! Roy and Pat were tenants of the hotel for years and years and years. They came down and stayed here for a month every summer. Then their daughter went to college at Salisbury University and they decided to sell their home in Baltimore and moved down here to be close to her. While Roy was a guest here he would go out each morning and clean up the property (which we didn't realize for the longest time..I'm talking parents thought I was doing it and I thought my mother was doing it until Roy came and asked me for a shovel and when I asked what he needed it for he told me he used it while he was cleaning up the grounds...and when I asked what grounds and he told me I was truly embarrassed since he had been doing for a few years at that point.) Anyway
when he said they purchased a home in Mystic Harbor which is on the other side of the bridge I figured we'd see him no more. But he has come in here to work every single day of the year without fail winter and summer and....he does it for no pay. Yes, that's what I said, he does it for no pay! He refuses payment....every year. And he's a great worker and can do just about anything. I don't know what we'll do if anything happens to Roy, because I really depend upon him at this point. So for me not to know he's been taken to the hospital is a big deal to me. I noticed his car wasn't here yesterday and again this morning but I thought he was working on new doors at his house (yes he takes work home...the man's a gem)...anyway, I'm a little distraught at this point. I called Mary and questioned why didn't let me know this information and she tried throwing Sara under the bus...and of course Sara is throwing Mary under the bus, but I think it's Vernon that I'm throwing under the bus because Mary yelled out to him (with Mary sitting in the next room) to let him know Roy was in the hospital and she assumed (uh, oh) Sara heard it. Vernon though, didn't even think to say anything to Sara. So we're saying it's Vernon's fault. Enough said! Vernon's fault it is!

Monday, March 3, 2008

Please hold...your call is very important to us....

I hate that sentence because it means one thing...I'm on hold and they don't give a damn how long it takes. I had a slight problem with Verizon (apparently you have to pay your phone bills now and I was a bit overdue...oops...I have my priorities and Verizon certainly isn't one of them...although their call would be very important to me.) Anyway, I think they've disconnected which means I have to go through this whole thing all over again...Crap! I'm telling you now, today is certainly not a customer service day anywhere. While in Nashville, we picked up product in one showroom where the items are tiny and you fill a basket, drop it off on Saturday and go back Sunday and pick your stuff up and pay for it. It's a great system, so we did that, went back Sunday, paid for it and left. When I was pricing the stuff in Nashville I knew there was stuff in the bag which didn't look paid for (it wasn't on the bill)...but I thought perhaps Sara had gone back on her own and the show was over so what was I to do. I waited until we got home, unpacked all of Nashville (I forgot about the bag and until we unearthed it again)...and asked Sara is she had gone back and written a 2nd check...which she did not. So yesterday I e-mailed the company and explained that we had not been charged for several items...and then I listed the amounts of each item and the item #. I ended with, just send me a bill and I'll take care of it. (Hopefully they haven't been in touch with Verizon). Anyway, today I get a call and they say, "We got your e-mail, and we have no record of this. " DUH, sort of why I e-mailed you! I said in my nice voice, "Yes, that's why I contacted I could pay you for the items that we received that were not paid for." She repeated, "We don't show that." HELLO!!! Am I speaking with a machine or a person here? So then I said, "Well, things were very hectic in your showroom, there were 3 of us at one time pulling things, and clearly what happened is you didn't look at the 2nd side of the tally sheet. You only billed us for the items on the first side." To which she said, "You have a tally sheet." I answered, "Yes, unless I threw it away..but I probably still have it by the looks of my desk." Actually to my credit it was filed in the proper place stapled to the invoice...yes, I'm trying to get organized. So she says, "I will need the tally sheet, please fax it to us." You know, there was never a oh, how nice that you would be so honest and not keep our merchandise without paying for it, because you one would have known. I could have kept these items and just figured it was a win win for goods to sell, but being a Christian and knowing I've been given several breaks from God, and knowing it won't be long before I'll be seeing him I figure at this time of my life I need all the brownie points I can get. But I have to say, they have made it more of a pain in my ass than I had anticipated. I'm not sure why, when they had nothing, they weren't thrilled to have someone say, I owe you money, and just tell me how much. Anyway, I've sent the tally sheet along with a memo asking them what the heck the problem is. All I'm trying to do is give them money....hello!!!! Now, back to Verizon...first I talked to the machine who apparently hung up on me...and then I called back and refused to speak with the machine so they had to put a rep on. Now might I add, she was pleasant and took the information I gave her...I actually paid on line (love on line pay) and she couldn't have been nicer...she enjoyed getting my money...I need her to call the other company and tell them how they should act. I'm sure the other company is now wondering how many other people went out without paying fully....perhaps there is a glitch in their Nashville system. Although we do this everyyear and this is the first time we've walked away with so much as one thing they didn't charge us for. Nashville...just keeps coming back to haunt me. Merchandise is still dribbling's like Christmas all over again. I love getting boxes. Stitched like a demon last night and got to the last part of the section and was one row off because I forgot to move everything down a row to compensate for an earlier mistake...crap! crap! crap! So tonight I'll be redoing a few things, no big deal though because I will get this block done tonight. And then it's on to STU and then once that's done I have to wait for the rest of the alphabet to be designed and shipped. So I'll no doubt be moving on the finished the Mermaids piece...and then...oh, my God...I get to start a new project, my heart is beating a mile a minute at the prospect. I know we're all experiencing the warm weather's it beautiful...sunny, still cooler here than where you are, but lovely none the less. I feel spring is right around the corner...clocks spring forward this just know I'm going to forget and miss church...a couple of years ago that happened, almost. I got to church thinking it was 7:50 a.m., thought there were a lot of cars, but still I wasn't thinking anything was amiss, then as I'm going through Dewees Hall and people were in the Kitchen I thought, how unusual, everyone got up early today...and then when I got upstairs, just outside the santuary I heard voices and though, uh-oh...something is not I peek inside, see that the Bishop (who was visiting for the day) was giving his sermon. I thought...I'll just go in quietly, sit in the back pew, and no one will be the wiser. I sit alright, however, the Bishop stopped the sermon and says, "Well, welcome to church, we assume you overslept." I was like a deer in headlights. He then came down the aisle, shook my hand, with our minister at his heels smiling and doing the same much for my sneaking in. What made matters worse.....I had just been elected to the Diocesan Finance Committee, however, the Bishop had not met me up to this point. I figured I was still in the clear on that because he wouldn't remember by the time we had a meeting several months later. Unfortunately, I snuck out after the service and while at the Bishop's reception after the service Bishop Shand asked Father David to introduce him to Sally Rutka, the new appointee....yea I heard about this for months. Father David said, "you already met her, she was the one sneaking into the service late." What's amazing about this is I came from the era where you arrived early, never on time, slidding in as the clock struck the hour, I have always been anywhere I had to be 1/2 - 1 hr. early. You never know when you will have to call a tow truck, fix a flat tire (does anyone actually do that anymore, etc.) so I've always started out early. For the Diocesan meetings which are 1 1/2 hr. away, I usually arrive 1 hr early. They make fun of me because I'm so early, but I prefer to be prepared. So to forget the time change, especially with the Bishop there...well, it still haunts me (obviously). On the other hand, I can use it as a excuse to skip church (do you suppose God would know?) I'm sure my conscious will get the better of me and I'll be sitting there in my usual spot. It's it hour of stitching is over before I know it, but an hour of church feels like a long hour. What's that about? Have a great evening to you tomorrow..maybe.

Saturday, March 1, 2008

My security system

I have the disorder where you feel you haven't locked the door so you have to keep checking it...or at least I thought I did. There are some days where I will check the front door to the shops 2-3 times and each time I walk away but by the time I get to the back door I can't remember and have to go back again. When it happens too many times in one day I keep saying out loud, "you've locked the door, you've locked the door" until I get outside. Usually once I leave the building even if I can't remember I just go on home and pray for the best. However, while I seem to be able to function at the hotel, all security goes to hell in a basket once I get home. I don't know if it's because I'm so happy to be there or what my problem is. However there have been too many mornings where I can't find my house keys only to open the front door and there they are along with my car keys still hanging in the door. Security...obviously not a huge priority with me at home. I'm not sure if it's that I don't give a damn (so unlike me), too tired to know, to lazy to go look, or too stupid to remember (could be all of the above)...but anyway, if you hear I've been murdered in my sleep you'll know I left the keys in the door again. Last night I continued with the ABC sampler but I should have stopped...I ripped out more than I put in...damn it. I hope to do better tonight. I hope to have the scissor holder done and on line certainly didn't turn out as well as if Carolyn put it together, but it's together and while it could have been put together better, I love the color and the initials which came out of Eileen Bennett's new monogram book....the initials work up beautifully. Oops, Sara just brought over the to go. Have a great weekend...hope your weather is as beautiful there as ours is. It's 50 degrees and sunny, although there is a wind which is cooling it down.