Thursday, July 28, 2011

Am I on hidden camera or is this just God playing with me?

Two days ago, I was bragging that the woman who usually appears 15 minutes before closing had finally learned and showed up at 11:00 in the morning yesterday. When Cynthia Radley called to try to cheer me on I was telling her I was safe last night and could relax because "the woman" had already been in early in the day. 9:00 (O.K. so that was early) I looked up and there she was again...2 times in one day, are you kidding me. I was working a double and I had to put up with her 2 times in one day. This time she wanted to know what button to buy for the chart she had purchased earlier in the day....the catch...she didn't remember what the chart was except it had a cat on it. Well that really narrows things down! She felt I'd remember what she purchased.....duh, I can't remember 5 minutes later what I did 5 minutes earlier so trust me when I tell you I don't remember a chart purchased 10 hours ago. She's coming back today with the chart...probably at 9:30. When I arrived for work this morning, in the office, I was informed that Connie called in sick so guess who has another double? Yup, I'm up again. So I've been in the shop working, which I really don't mind since it's air conditioned and I'm getting orders placed. But just as Sara brought my lunch in guess who arrived for help with her knitting. The lady with the friggin' ice cream cone the other night. Yes, she didn't follow the directions given her at all, and made a mess of the yarn. So while my burger cooled down and the fries cold (that may have been God's doing) I'm showing this simpleton how to knit her scarf. She won't shut the hell up and continues to chatter to her family telling them how easy it is and- she then makes a mistake (and the worse part I saw her doing it and didn't say a word) and when she counts stitches realizes she's done it wrong and guess who had to take it apart and redo it. Did she shut up then...hell no, this little chatterbox kept right on telling her family how easy it is...even though I told her she had to concentrate but she never shut up for one minute. While she was chattering the family was pulling on the tape measures and picking up everything on the counter while others tried on the peepers. By the time this group left my lunch was cold...thank you so much! (I ate it anyway don't you know.) But now I'll just sit and wait for my 9:30 lady...yes life in a needlework shop can be tough! But I'd rather be here working in a/c than doing road work (are they my only two choices?) I hear it's going to go to the 3 digits again today or what's new! I may never leave the shop again if that's the case. O.K., it's now Friday...usually a time for a big Whoppee!!! but honestly it's so darn hot out there I don't want to even think about it. So I'm once again back in the a/c and Salty Yarns. But today Renee was in this morning so I'm only doing the one that's reason to say Whoppee!!! The Hoffman order didn't arrive so no Prairie Schooler Santa for another 3 days...darn it. I'm tired of saying, "No I'm sorry while it's been published we just haven't got it in house yet." But we did receive the new Chatelaine chart by Martina..."The Sea Quilt." Of course it is spectacular...and I'm trying to figure out how I can fit this in to my already overpacked stitching line up. Last night in the shop I worked on my canvas work santa and I'm really loving doing this again. I thought I'd never go back to needlepoint, but canvaswork can be so much fun using the different fibers and different stitches. I can't wait to get a picture of this little guy and show you my progress. Tonight I've got to get back on the Bent Creek Quaker Noel row because Renee is sick of looking at the frame sitting on the cutting table. I just throw my stuff where ever and it frustrates the hell out of Renee....oops, sorry about that! Well I want to publish this before the info is another day old so I'll talk with you later. Wish me luck tonight...we're going into another weekend which means a whole new batch of people to see, some we love and others...well, let's just say they are a challenge to us. Have a great weekend and try to stay cool.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Well, we're into day 7 of the hottest temps in history

at least down here. I really can't say I can remember a time when the heat was this bad...the other day with the humidity it was 104...104 people, I'm pretty sure I could roast something just putting it in a pan outside. But, I'm thrilled to say I spend as little time as possible out there...I sit in "a/c" comfort in the shop or in my office, however, I do believe it has fried some brains out there. Either the people who are non-stitchers but fall through the door anyway, are suffering from fried brains or they are just stupid. You know I have to judge them! I'm pretty sure they are falling into both categories though...because I can tell some are just plain stupid! I had a first tonight though...I had a woman come in and ask if I would do her a favor...she sent her nieces and nephews on a scavenger hunt and their final destination was "Aunt Susan's favorite shop" and I was the lucky final destination. She asked if when the kids came in if I would hand them their prize...which I give her credit for thinking I was that honest because there was $40 dollars in the bag to be split among the 4 kids. Of course I said I would. I mean I am her favorite shop and well I thought it was really nice for her to do that with the kids. Of course when they came in with raised voices, etc., I started rethinking my decision, but they were nice kids regardless of the raised voices and after all they did find the shop. So that was my good deed for the day...and perhaps the last one I'll be doing for a while. After all, as the summer has progressed I've gotten rather cranky, if I do say so myself. My feet are killing the end of the day they look like blown up balloons and not even my favorite sandal is giving me any comfort. But I'm so grateful for the a/c here and at home I hate to complain too much because I know things could be a lot worse. I haven't put a needle in fabric for a few days and that's making it worse as I know I should be stitching, but I got a new knitting book on Entrelac in and I'm just dying to knit...but too uncertain to begin. Pat's entrelac scarf was a true inspiration to me, so I've been harping on this since spring. The girls in the shop don't want to hear it anymore which is why I'm bringing it to you. I'm getting close to starting something though. Of course I said the same thing about knitting socks and I'm not even close to doing that. Crap someone just walked in with an ice cream you know they should know better...what the hell do they think the sign in the window about no food or drinks means. Honestly, this may just take me over the top....all I need is her dripping cone to leave ice cream all over the place. My night is starting to get worse. And this is the week I have a returning customer who arrives around 9:30 and wants to look for about 1 to 1/2 hours when she knows I close. I go through this every night with her for a week, every year. It never occurs to her that perhaps it would be better if she came in perhaps a few hours before we close...but then why would she want to do the right thing when she can annoy me for days. Yes, this is what I'm dealing with. And now the woman with the ice cream who I have to say could win the gold medal for eating it as slowly as possible, has made a purchase of yarn, which thrilled me because I thought she'd get out of here with her ice cream...but no...she is now looking around some more. Damn...she's driving me nuts, although that is a short drive at this point. Tomorrow I work a double in here so by this time tomorrow night I will have gone completely around the bend. Oh, yes..there is a God...she dripped ice cream inside the bag over her own yarn. is sweet and so is revenge. But has she decided to give up the friggin I'm wrong, she has asked where the trash can is and then promptly dropped the cone on the floor. But she then picked it up so I guess it's alright except there sits my Salty Yarns bag in the trash...damn woman. And, of course, I did have to mop the floor from the spills which I guess she didn't feel the need to clean up. The only thing that is salvaging the situation for me is she got it all over herself as well. Everyone else tonight has really been nice and most have left me alone, although that really isn't a requirement. Last night I was run ragged helping people. But tonight we're sort of self serve which has been nice because it's allowed me to get the new stuff and reorders out. We got in the New Mill Hill Christmas kits and we got Bent Creek's Christmas Mantle back in. Everytime we get these Mill Hill beaded kits in I fall in love with one of them, start to take one home and then remember how much bead work there is and put it right back on the rack...Thank God! But the "Believe Santa" is really tempting...I'm hoping I can resist. We also got in the new Maureen Appleton kits last week, and I've been eyeballing one of them. I'm still working on Bent Creek's Quaker Noel and still enthusiastic because I have the tray frame sitting here urging me on. Of course I think I mentioned the last 3 days I've been too busy to stitch and tonight frustration has kept me from it. At home I'm working on the Betsy Morgan Toy Chest...still and probably forever. Although Paola has finished hers and is going to bring it to Jamboree when she comes and even insinuated that she would help me if I needed help putting mine together. I feel she's being very optomistic thinking I would get it done, but I'm going to give it a go and perhaps I'll surprise myself. I'm so far behind though on everything I'm not sure this is going to happen. But at least I didn't take on another class like Debbie, Sara and the rest who are taking Jackie's class next month. I know my limitations, plus I already have 4 of Jackie's class kits not finished...only one has been stitched completely and the other 3 I haven't even started. Does this sound familiar to you? I know there are many of us with this happening so I don't feel alone, but I sure would like to get perhaps one of them finished this year. Plus a thousand other pieces and I've got to start on my Christmas ornament exchange that I do with Theresa Wood at Jamboree. Last year I waited for the Just Cross Stitch ornament book so I would be certain to stitch an ornament she didn't have (hopefully) and I had it done in plenty of time so I was thrilled. But I'm starting to stress already about it so I've been checking out a few things. Oh, my God, I hear the Trollbead's being moved around. I feel so sorry for the girls working in Sea Trader...this has been a Trollbead summer since we've had them on sale and I'm telling you they are kept busy each day with these. We'll all be thrilled when they are finally gone and we don't have to fool with them. It's exhausting! And I've only had to do it a couple of days. And unlike the girls who really do it correctly, I just pull out the trays and let them have a free for all. I use to really work with people on their bracelets, but no longer. I'm out of the trollbead mood apparently. I still love them and believe you me I've got a few bracelets, but I'm done measuring, making bracelets, etc. All I want to do now is sit on my big butt. Oh, my tonight could be a first...we have less than 15 minutes and the annual lady who loves to come in 15 minutes before closing hasn't shown up. I hope I didn't just jinx myself. Please, please keep her out of her tonight and tomorrow night. Tomorrow with my working a double I won't be staying here one minute longer than I have to. O.K. I've locked the door...a few seconds, O.K., a few minutes early, but a necessity I assure you. I can breath easier now even though we have a shop full of people because I know she won't be here walking around like she's got all night. And while I wait for the people to evacuate the shop I shall say good night to you all. I hope you have a wonderful day tomorrow and that the heat doesn't do you in!

Friday, July 15, 2011

Good Lord, I'm way too old for all this....

I just got over the May retreat (yes, I do realize we're into the middle of July but I'm going somewhere with this)...and was ready to get back on track when the New York girls blew into town. Pat Ellis, Cindy Salow, Tina Rivellino, Norma Roberts, Roberta Grainer and Ruth Nobel. Well, those wild ladies kept me up each night so by the time they left I was exhausted and back to my, "Good Lord I feel like I'm 90" mood. I challenged Cindy to a stitching duel and that poor woman drove herself insane trying to stitch faster that I stitched. Sara had warned her that I loved a challenged and would sit up all night stitching just to win. What Sara and Cindy didn't take into account was the fact that I was still working on Renee's birthday gift which was due in 2 days. Actually I finished the Erica Michael's acorn fob for her but then decided to add the JABCO Acorn pin cushion as an added gift making it a theme I really had to focus on the pin cushion and the Strawberry pretzel salad Renee had requested back in April when she tasted it at the Betsy Morgan weekend. So I was up all night all right, but I was putting the salad together and stitching the pin cushion. When I got into the shop and Tina informed me that Cindy had stitched all night, through the visit to Assateague and through dinner, I said the hell with it and kept working on Renee's gift. So Cindy won the challenge and a pair of Gingher's too boot. Next time Cindy you might not be so lucky so you better be prepared. I let Cindy pick the project and she picked Lizzie Kate's new inspirational boxer" I really enjoyed the stitch even if I did lose the challenge and did end up finishing the piece after Renee's birthday, and as you can see, and I'm now searching for the perfect frame. I'm trying on different frames in the shop. I'm showing it right now sitting on the fabric table with the Eastside Moulding frame on it. Sara's vote is for this frame so it might just be the final one. Anyway, Pat and Roberta were new to the group this year, at least new to coming to Ocean City, but they fit right in. Roberta even took a dive into the Atlantic ocean and fell in love with it. Anyway, I had a great time with the girls and can't thank Cindy enough for taking over in the shop and cutting fabric, answering the phone and taking an order, and acting as the personal shopper for the rest of the group. All I did was sit on my fat butt and we know I've perfected that event. (if that was an Olympic event I'd have the gold medal.) Anyway, thanks all for was fun. Can't wait to do it all over again next year...but this time I'm coming primed, ready and will get a lot of sleep before you arrive. Add the lack of sleep to the fact that on Saturdays, my only day off, I am Solomon's personal assistant, driver, entertainer, toy buyer and Coco's Palace playmate you can understand I hope why I've gotten behind on blogging. Solomon is my 3 year old grandson and thank God his 16 year old brother takes care of Israel, 18 months now, or I'd have him too...but as it is, I try to give Mary a break on Saturdays (5 days a week he is in daycare) so she can perform her job without him hanging on her, so I know Saturday is my day with Solomon. Coco's Palace is our favorite hangout. I happen to like it too because it is self contained, and last week I took my stitching with me and worked on my Quaker Christmas Row by Bent Creek (loving it). I only look up periodically to make sure he's still with heart stops periodically when I can't find him, but sooner or later his blond curls can be seen coming down a slide. After 3-4 hours there he's tired and hurt because someone has pushed him or ignored him so our new thing is to head to Toys R Us where we head for the super heroes aisle. (this is so foreign to me I can't even begin to tell you.) After paying for some piece of crap that will be broken before I get home with it we head off for Ocean City where we arrive around dinner time, tired, beaten, but satisfied and filled with crap from a day at Coco's Palace eating whatever crap they serve...and trust me none of it is on my diet. I've been able to do better than my first week at Coco's when Sara had to drive me home I was so exhausted. I think last week I went home at 9:00 which is early, but beat the 8:00 the week before. But tomorrow, which is Saturday, is looming with no Solomon. Tomorrow he's headed to Baltimore for an audition. He got the call to audition for an X-man movie so we're keeping our fingers crossed for the little guy...but also realize he is just one of thousands who I am sure are lining up to try out for the same thing. Anyway, that means no Coco'a Palace for me (I think I'd look a little silly if I just showed up there with no child). Michael is back but he's headed out to lacrosse camp...and Izzie has his brother who is paid to look after him in the summer so I am child free....I swear I won't know what to do with myself. Anyway, I'm looking forward to the day off....well I'll still be working but a day off from child care. Although Friday became my day with Solomon as his daycare was closed so we were off to Walmart to find things for him to do on the car ride to Baltimore tomorrow. So I still had my day with him. I hope he has wonderful memories of me...I think he will....especially since he rules and I am here to serve him. Well, it's now Monday morning and I've decided to finish the blog. While I was child free on Saturday, my girls were both wrecks so my children were my problem. Mary was absolutely distraught over not being with Solomon while he was dealing with the audition. Brian rode by the audition spot when he arrived in Baltimore at 10:00 a.m. and saw the line had started to form so he decided they needed to get in line right away. He kept Mary informed about what was happening so he called about every 1/2 hour. Like every man, Brian didn't look in the bag Mary packed and just took Solomon's lunch box so he was missing most of the food, etc. So they were in line with a lack of supplies. When Mary found this out, plus the fact that at some point they moved the line out of the heat and into a room where the noise level went up, she became more distraught as our Solomon has a problem with loud noises and that includes rooms where the noise level is high. So he immediately wanted to leave. Meanwhile the auditions didn't start for some time and they weren't first in line. So Brian was trying to keep him occupied, calm, and engaged and Solomon was slowly breaking down. So I was dealing with Mary breaking down and crying during our first really busy weekend. Fortunately she would be crying, someone would come to the desk, she'd wipe off the tears, straighten up long enough to walk out with a smile on her face and greet the guests, do her job then come back in the office and cry because she felt perhaps Solomon was too young to be put through an audition. But around 3:00 we got the call that it was over and Solomon had done his job well. They got in for their audition and they asked if Solomon had prepared a monologue. He's 3 (well 4 next month) and while I think he's pretty smart..a monologue? When Brian said he didn't have one they asked him to sing a song and he stood on his mark and sang his little heart out. Oh, bless his heart, I can't believe he got through it. Anyway, while we were breathing a sigh of relief that his ordeal was over, my Michael, Sara's 10 year old, was melting down at Lacrosse camp. Vernon took him over to Salisbury University at 11:00 a.m. on Saturday for 3 days of camp. Apparently while he was excited to be there, he hadn't taken into account it was a lacrosse camp and therefore you would actually be required to run around and play lacrosse. So he was calling every half hour crying complaining that he was tired and wanted to come home. So while Mary stopped crying Sara was beside herself worrying about Michael. We really do not need this type of drama on a Weekend in July, but that's life. Anyway, Sunday was Sara's day to be upset while Mary was breathing easily. Sara went over to the university to watch Michael play but his mood continued which just about drove her around the bend. But she was determined he was going to tough it out and stay so she put up with his phone calls about every 1/2 hour all day, at least when he wasn't sleeping or playing lacrosse. Mary on the other hand was over joyed when she received a text from the audition people who informed her that Solomon was being called back along with 2 other boys for a second round of auditions. Because Solomon had such a long day on Saturday I decided to take him to Coco's Palace on Sunday. So I left Sara to deal with Michael and Solomon and I went off for a day at Coco's. We weren't there 1 hour when I noticed Solomon in one of the structures right in front of me screaming. I thought he was playing with other kids and they were holding his feet and not letting him crawl back through so I was thinking, " if those darn kids don't stop messing with him I'm going to have to intervene" when a mother (who was obviously more attuned than I) screamed and dove into the structure and grabbed Solomon who wasn't screaming causing he was having fun, but apparently he was caught and couldn't get free. I, needless to say, felt terrible that I was unable to assess the situation correctly, plus I now had a mother who thought I was incapable of watching any child and I had Solomon who was absolutely distraught. I just knew they were going to take away my grandmother status, as I tried to calm him down and offered to leave to take him home. But he was a trooper and after an ice cream cone he wanted to stay. Believe me after that I was tuned in for any sound that sounded like a distress cry. And at 3:00 I had to pry him away since I had to get back to Ocean City for work at 4:00. I was exhausted! So that's how my life has been going. And since this is suppose to be a shop blog I'll just say a little something shop worthy...I'm working on the Bent Creek Quaker Noel piece and I'm really excited. I love the tray they framed it in and have them coming from Eastside Moulding. The funny thing is I didn't even notice it until Cindy asked me about it. As soon as I saw how they had finished it I grabbed one for my bag and after the inspirational sampler I had to start this one. I'm changing a few colors however, as Sara and I both felt the brown, main color was a little drab for us. So I chose Acorn which is a bit more robust and I have changed the trees at the beginning to Seagreen (I think that's the color on the chart but don't have it with me at the moment) and I didn't like the red in the first large motif so I kept the entire thing brown, although I feel I should have done the middle cross in the gold color. But anyway, I'm loving this piece...I'm all about the Quaker stitch anyway, and I've pulled the other Quaker pieces Bent Creek have designed so I'll start on them next ... perhaps! At home I'm working on the Betsy Morgan chest since we are suppose to start putting this class piece together in the fall. This is a slow go for me since I'm exhausted when I get home and only work on it about 2 hours a day around 5:30 a.m. I'm certainly not as young as I use to be...why I remember when I could sit up until 2 stitching and then get up around 5 and stitch some more...yes, those were the good old days. Good Lord, the next thing you know I'll be talking about 5 cent cokes. I'll end here instead and go eat, another Olympic medal should it ever be a sport for me. Have a great week and try to stay cool and hydrated. I do have to admit one final thing...and only because the New York ladies knew I had the pictures. I downloaded the pictures into my new Mac computer and told the computer to erase the pictures off the disc....and then I couldn't figure out how to get them from the computer to the blog. So now I'm on the old computer and I have no pictures left in the camera so now I can't send you pictures of anything because I'm an idiot. I shall keep you posted on my idiot status and will continue to fight the Mac for the pictures.