Saturday, April 30, 2011

Long Time Gone

Okay, it's only been a bit more than two weeks, but that's a long time for me. Unfortunately, I don't have masses of photos of progress or finishes to show you (heck I haven't finished anything this year yet!), only this one that shows my lack of progress more than anything.
I did finish the sky and part of the two flanking columns, but that's not great progress for two weeks. What have I been doing with all my "free" time? Reading, lots and lots of reading. No, nothing that's enriching my life or expanding my knowledge, just reading for the fun of it. 

After getting some of the housework done and spending a bit of time on the porch reading, I will limit myself to one hour, I'm going to push myself to stitch. I know I can finish those flanking columns, close in and bead the pyramid unit, start a cat and box and probably start the last border this weekend. I am very concerned that I'm going to run out of one thread. I have two boxes left on either side of the pyramid to stitch and I'm not sure I have enough to do even one. I'm going to try doing the bottom leg in the substitute DMC with the top leg in the called for Gloriana and hope that people's eyes only register the top leg. If that doesn't work, I'll have to order another skein. Sooooo frustrating.

Monday, April 11, 2011

Long weekend update #3

While I should have been outside picking up branches and things that were blown from the trees during the windstorm a couple of weeks ago, I decided to stay inside - none of the stuff that's in the yard is going anywhere on its own - and stitch. As before, here is my before and after:

Hmmm, that "after" picture is really washed out. Oh well, professional photographer is DSon's job, not mine.

Not sure how much stitching I'll get in today as I'm going with the Hubs to a doctor's appointment, but whatever I do will be on the pyramid. Back to what passes for normal tomorrow.

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Long weekend update #2

First, thanks to everyone for the kind comments and good wishes. DDad went home yesterday. They did send him home with oxygen and an appointment with a cardiologist, but so much better than what we were looking at earlier in the week. Not what he was planning for this week, but so glad he didn't decide to make the drive here. It's bad enough having things like this happen but I can't imagine how much worse it would feel if you were hundreds of miles away from home.

Again, not as much stitching as I'd hoped, after lunch with the in-laws they came to the house and helped us put in the new storm door (it was my birthday present - yes I really asked for it, if I don't ask for things like this for birthdays or Christmas - one year I asked for new handles for the kitchen cupboards - they'll never get purchased or installed). We hadn't seen them in a while so it was nice to spend some time with them.

My before and afters (these should be clickable):

 Finished off the palm border and also filled in some backstitching on a column that I missed earlier (you can't see that). The plan for today is to work on the pyramid. I only need to clean up the breakfast dishes, and throw a load of laundry into the washer and I'll have the day for stitching. I pulled spaghetti sauce out of the freezer, so dinner will be a snap and as I don't have to work tomorrow, I can stay up a little later than usual. Such great plans, hopefully they actually come to something!

Saturday, April 9, 2011

Long weekend update #1

I managed to find lots of things other than stitching to do yesterday. The stitchy bug finally bit around 6:30 and I stitched until about 11:00. Here are my before and after photos:
I still haven't quite figured out what this border is, but the colors are pretty and it fills the space nicely. I still need to fill in those gaps you see, add some trunks, backstitching fill in, and some backstitching. Hoping to have a finish on this part today and then, onto the pyramid.

A couple of my bummers from yesterday's post have been lessened.  "They"'ve agreed on a budget, but it still has to be voted on. If it doesn't pass than we'll go through this all again on Thursday (they agreed on *another* continuing resolution). It will be interesting to see what was cut. The program I work in was scheduled to be zero funded in fiscal year 2012, so will see if they grabbed it early. Fortunately, I do have a few options if that happens.

And it seems some of DDad's heart problems may have been worsened by one or more of his medications. The doctors have been changing and adjusting dosages and his heart beat and rate seem to have settled down. He still has to see a cardiologist and a pace maker may still be in his future, but they're not talking about transferring him directly from the hospital and he may go home today. And his pneumonia is almost 100% gone.

Friday, April 8, 2011

Three bummers, I think I'm out!!

One non-bummer, I have already started my weekend and for the next 3-1/2 days - or maybe longer as I'm a federal employee and if there's not a budget passed in 11 hours and 47 minutes there's no money and I'm out of a job - I'm home with the housework almost done (just need to do the laundry) and nothing planned except lunch with DMIL and her husband (I call him DFIL but someone said that was limited to the Hubs' father, meh) tomorrow and stitching (I know you've heard that before).

So bummer #1, the job situation. Although I know what they mean when they say it, it's hard to hear yourself called "non-essential" when you work you a$$ off for 8 to 10 hours a day. We should be okay for several weeks as I set the tax refund aside just for this reason, but sure didn't want to use it for this.

Bummer #2, my parents were supposed to be here yesterday. Unfortunately, DDad ended up in the hospital with pneumonia on Tuesday. According to the doctor, they've got that pretty well cleared up BUT it stressed his body enough that it exasturbated a heart condition (unkown until now) so they're trying to get that under control. There's a possiblity he will be transferred down to UMich hospital for a pacemaker, but they're trying a few things before they do that. This is one of those situations when I hate that I live so far away.

And for bummer #3, the Hubs has been told that he's diabetic. It's really not much of a shock, but I am very irritated with him as he didn't tell me the results of his previous blood tests (or that he'd even had them) so I didn't know he was even "pre-diabetic", so I wasn't able to adjust recipes and food purchases to take that into account. Just grrrrr...

There are a few not bummer things though so maybe I"m not totally out just yet. Today is my birthday! Yep, the big 5-0!! I've officially reached middle-aged!  Hey, in my family, the women do tend to live into their late-80s to mid-90s so I've got a pretty good chance too. Not doing anything really special. I did order some stash (isn't that what any holiday is for?) I got Forget-Me-Nots in Stitches' Deep Peace and the fabric for it. I'll slowly collect the threads and other special things.

I also signed up for the Birds of Feather Mystery with Karen at Wasatch Needlecraft. I'll add it to the other mysteries that I've signed up for and never finished...

I do have some stitching to show, Egyptian Garden of course. I finally finished the ibis/papyrus section and backstitched the last set of columns. I'm hoping to get a LOT done this weekend, so here's the progress through this morning:
The count of remaining parts is:
  1. Faraway palm border (started)
  2. Pyramid
  3. Two cats boxes
  4. Outer border
  5. Ibis and papyrus
  6. Find all those little stitches that I missed.
  7. Beading (crystals, cubes and bugles)
I'm debating starting a daily "here's where I am" posting just to see that there *is* progress. I have great plans for lots of things...

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Cat tail and TUSAL

Here's my TUSAL photo for April. Trouble cat once again assisted with the photo. I originally had this in the curl of her tail, but she kept swishing it around, so now you just get to see her tail end.

There's bits and pieces of Egyptian Garden and Grandfather's Sleigh added since last month.

Saturday, April 2, 2011

Another month...

Funny, I was thinking the other day that March was certainly a long month, now it feels like it went by way too fast. Stitching wise it was definitely too short. I started out like a bat out of Hades, but really slowed down.  My March goals were:

EGYPTIAN GARDEN-Finish outer border Done
-Cat block Done
-Columns Done
-Ibis and  papyrus section almost... But I did do the thin border above the columns and start the last faraway palm border, so maybe it evens out.
-Stitch band 3 No
-Stitch band 2 No again
-Finish and another No

*sigh* Not a very good month. I am, as I've mentioned repeatedly, having a terrible time working past my block on Egyptian Garden and that's creating havoc with all my other stitching. With that thought in mind, my goals for April are:


That's easy enough. And hopefully those weren't famous last words.

While I haven't done much, I do have some progress to show.  First, Egyptian Garden:

Even though I should clean house today (my parents are coming to visit this week) I think I'm going to work on this and see what I can get done.  And there, I'll have met my goal for April!!!

Next is:

I've now got more than the center crease to worry about getting out. I roll this up when I'm not stitching as I don't want to permanently set the crease, but it lives in my work bag and gets crushed, so I'm setting additional creases. The blank spots in the lower windows will be candles - the kit came with the cutest little star charms for the flames. There will also be a wreath on the door. The Hubs is having some health issues, so I may get a bit done on these as I'm waiting in doctor's offices. Yes, I go with him, not because he needs help, but because he doesn't remember what the doctor's tell him. He was over-medicating himself a while back because he forgot the part where the doctor said to stop taking one of his medicines and take another instead. I might understand if he were 81, but he's only 41!

And last, but not least:

Not a great picture, but it wants to roll up so I had to take the picture in the rolling process.

One more piece of fabric in the mail this week. The Mourning Dove for Sarah Elliott's Home Port came in. I'm not sure what I was expecting, but I felt sort of "eh" when I saw the fabric. There's a slight grey cast to it, but my mind apparently thought Mourning Dove should look totally different than it does.